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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Out Now with Aaron and Abe: Episode 113 – The Wolverine




This week’s episode of Out Now with Aaron and Abe, finds the gang delving back into the world of Canadian mutants.  The Wolverine is upon Aaron, Abe, and guests Jose Cordova and Jordan from Jersey, and they are all anxious to talk about what old man Logan has been up to this time around.  Additionally, all of the regular segments are present as well, including “Know Everybody”, “Out Now Quickies”, “Movie Call Back”, “Out Now Feedback”, and Trailer Talk (47 Ronin and The Grandmaster).  The gang was very careful this week, as adamantium claws are nothing to joke about and sitting on one can be terrible.  They took caution as they recorded, but were also happy to try and keep everyone entertained.

So now, if you’ve got an hour to kill…

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

‘Drinking Buddies’ Have A Fun, Improv-Heavy, Good Time



Drinking Buddies:  3 out of 5

Kate:  That’s the problem with heartbreak, because with you it’s like an atomic bomb and to the world it’s just a really big cliché, because we all have the same experience.

Drinking Buddies is a step forward in the film world for writer/director Joe Swanberg, who has specialized in making films of the mumblecore variety.  To catch some up on what that term means, the concept of mumblecore revolves around independent films that are very low budget, largely improvised by the performers (generally amateur actors), and shot in very naturalistic ways, including lighting and real world-locations.  Swanberg’s latest feature is the largest in scale, as it involves several well-known actors and a clearer structure that is somewhat familiar, but still working off what the cast brings to the material most of all.  As a result, Drinking Buddies feels somewhat slight, overall, but the quality of the performances (one in particular) is enough to make it a solid watch.  Setting a lot of action around a craft brewery does not exactly hurt either.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Out Now with Aaron and Abe: Bonus Episode – Comic Con 2013 Recap



The special bonus episode of Out Now with Aaron and Abe is all about San Diego Comic Con 2013.  Aaron was in attendance for all five days along with frequent guest and friend of the show Alan Aguilera.  The two of them are both present for this episode, talking at length about what happened mainly in regards to the big movie panels that occurred within the always incredibly packed Hall H.  Both Aaron and Alan share their experiences within the hall and talk about the footage seen and what went on with the panel participants.  The two also talk about some of their favorite experiences and sights seen at this year’s Comic Con.  It is a lengthier discussion than anticipated, but certainly packed with info.

So now, if you’ve got an hour to kill…

Friday, July 26, 2013

‘The Wolverine’ Sinks His Claws Into A Strong Standalone Feature

The Wolverine:  4 out of 5

Yukio:  It's an honor to meet the Wolverine.
Logan:  That's not who I am anymore. 


You have got to hand it to Hugh Jackman.  He began his American film career by starring as Wolverine in Bryan Singer’s X-Men back in 2000 and he has remained loyal to the franchise.  Despite proving his versatility as an actor, including his garnering of an Oscar nomination this past year for Les Miserables, Jackman has stepped into the shoes of Logan 6 times now (7, if you include next year’s X-Men: Days of Future Past).  The man clearly has a love for playing this character and that is expressed better than ever in The Wolverine.  Taking a step away from the X-Men franchise as a whole, this film is content with telling a smaller story with focus, as it deals with the journey of just one character and what it means to have lived a life full of everlasting pain.  It also happens to be set in a world of comic book characters, allowing it to still have lots of action and fun with the premise.  The result makes me happy to view The Wolverine as the best comic book movie of the summer.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Get On That ‘To Do List’



The To Do List:  3 ½ out of 5

Amber:  Freshman year at college is like one big sexual pop quiz.  You need to do your homework.

I should start by saying I liked this movie.  The To Do List is a fun summer comedy that mixes absurd raunchiness and some sincere qualities in terms of what the journey means to the lead character, when all is said and done.  It also happens to be another coming-of-age film, which will be in far less theaters than some of the bigger comedies, but still fits the bill of a little indie that could, were it to break out.  Also, it’s a coming-of-age film that was written and directed by a woman and centers on a female character.  I am not one to do too much discussion about gender politics, but aside from being a pretty funny (and filthy) movie, it is coming from a perspective that does not get seen as much, when it comes to these sorts of stories.  Emphasizing once again that I liked the film, it does help that this is not only a movie by a women, starring a women, in a genre generally dominated by boys, but one that does not throw that fact into your face.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Out Now with Aaron and Abe: Episode 112 – The Conjuring


This week’s episode of Out Now with Aaron and Abe, the gang gets back to spooky basics, as they discuss The Conjuring with guests Aaron Fink and Markus Robinson, a re-teaming for the ages!  The guys all dig into this movie and whether or not it made them worry about things that went bump in the night.  Additionally, all of the regular segments are present as well, including “Know Everybody”, “Out Now Quickies”, “Movie Call Back”, “Out Now Feedback”, and Trailer Talk (Seventh Son and Insidious: Chapter 2).  Plenty of fun is had this week, because if there was no fun, it would just be too scary to sit and the dark and record all the movie chatter that occurs between all these guys.
 
So now, if you’ve got an hour to kill…
 

Monday, July 22, 2013

Out Now "Nights" - Episode 3: Pacific Rim Spoiler Talk, Including Rocket Punches


Here's another new podcast episode that is a little different.  Often times after Aaron and Abe wrap up the main show, they tend to keep talking, sometimes with the guest(s) still around.  So, for this exclusive Podomatic episode, of Out Now "Nights", Aaron, Abe, Alan, and Josh continue to discuss Pacific Rim in more explicit and spoilerific detail, and then bounce around to other films and topics throughout.  Keep in mind that there are a bunch of spoilers for many movies and more foul language, but mainly let us know what you think of this kind of free form discussion.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

‘Red 2’: Those Wacky Elderly Are At It Again



Red 2:  2 out of 5

Marvin:  You haven’t killed anyone in months.

A few years ago audiences were treated to RED, a film based off a not-very-well-known comic, which centered on the idea of a retired CIA agent getting back into action.  While the film was nothing like its comic counterpart, it got by on its playful sense of humor, fun cast, and the fact that it allowed Helen Mirren to wield a mini gun.  For whatever reason, a sequel was green lit and the results are far from great.  Red 2 does not have a whole lot of novelty this time around, as we are already used to the concept of older folks cracking wise, while cracking skulls.  It does not help that the film has an alarmingly twisty narrative that relies on globetrotting and double crosses throughout, but still never manages to be compelling.  The loose tone is definitely still apparent, but I can’t quite say that I needed to watch more of these retired, extremely dangerous folk.

Friday, July 19, 2013

‘Turbo’ Allows Us To Watch A Speedy Escargot



Turbo:  2 out of 5

Turbo:  I wish I was fast.

Turbo presents the idea of a snail racing in the Indy 500.  There are reasons why this happens and the fact that the film is animated and intended for children allows for an obvious amount of suspension of disbelief, but let me reiterate that this is a film that presents the idea of a Snail racing in the Indy 500.  Sometimes my tone is not too clear, but I can just say right now that did not like this movie.  It is certainly bright, colorful, and full of talent from all sides, given the production value of the animation, voice cast, etc., but in terms of being entertained by Turbo, that just wasn’t happening.  I can imagine that those who buy into the premise will be more entertained, but given that the movie settled in its groove early on and did not have me on board, I can say pretty easily that I just did not care for this film.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Out Now with Aaron and Abe: Episode 111 – Pacific Rim



This week’s episode of Out Now with Aaron and Abe puts the apocalypse on hold so Abe, Aaron, and guests Alan Aguilera and Josh L’Heureux can discuss Guillermo Del Toro’s film, Pacific Rim.  It is all about big monsters fighting big robots and it’s the kind of thing that the guys are all pretty excited about already, so perhaps they had a good time.  Additionally, all of the regular segments are present as well, including “Know Everybody”, “Out Now Quickies”, “Movie Call Back”, “Out Now Feedback”, and Trailer Talk (Captain Phillips and The Lego Movie).  Plenty of fun is had this week, as the guys are all about talking extensively about Jaeger vs. Kaiju, while keeping spirits quite high.

So now, if you’ve got an hour to kill…

‘The Conjuring’ Is Rated R For Really Trying To Be Scary



The Conjuring: 3 out of 5

Carolyn Perron:  There's something horrible happening in my house.

As much good as The Conjuring has in it, I wish the marketing didn’t spoil the film’s key scene.  I am not going to delve to deep, but Lili Taylor (one of the unluckiest actresses, given that for such seemingly nice woman, she always seems to play emotionally or physically scarred characters) is involved in what is easily the film’s most accomplished horror set piece, based on the setup and payoff.  No, not everyone has necessarily seen the same marketing for the film, but the point I am getting at is that the film is effective enough, but does not do much to push the genre forward, nor does it have to.  The Conjuring is effective in merging 70s horror sensibilities with the vision of a modern day horror filmmaker.  There is not much more to glean from the film, but it looks good, will scare many, and is not obnoxiously dour.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Out Now "Nights" - Episode 2: The Lone Ranger Spoilers and Other Summer Fun!

Here's another new podcast episode that is a little different.  Often times after Aaron and Abe wrap up the main show, they tend to keep talking, sometimes with the guest(s) still around.  So, for this exclusive Podomatic episode, of Out Now "Nights", Aaron, Abe, and Jordan Grout continue to discuss The Lone Ranger in more explicit and spoilerific detail, and then bounce around to other films and topics throughout.  Keep in mind that there are a bunch of spoilers for many movies and more foul language, but mainly let us know what you think of this kind of free form discussion.


You can also find links to the episode at Podomatic HERE or Subscribe via iTunes HERE

Of course, in addition to this episode, there are many more episodes to be found on iTunes, as well as on the hosted site, The HHWLOD Podcast Network, and still at outnow.podomatic.com for mainly the newest episodes and some exclusives.  One can also learn more at the official Facebook page for Out Now, facebook.com/outnowpodcast (“like” it), which features updates from Aaron and Abe’s personal blogs, other random posts, and some photo albums.  Finally, feel free to e-mail the show at OutNowPodcast@gmail.com with any sort of feedback or add an iTunes rating/review.
 

Friday, July 12, 2013

‘Pacific Rim’ Brings Forth A True Clash Of Titans And Its Monsterific

Pacific Rim:  4 out of 5

Stacker Pentecost:  Today we are cancelling the apocalypse! 

Obviously several thoughts come to mind when explaining that Pacific Rim is about giant robots fighting giant aliens, which includes properties like Transformers or Godzilla.  More importantly, it would seem that one’s mind is probably already made up in regards to how seriously they want to take said premise.  Even if one is unsure, the film certainly is not.  Pacific Rim is larger than life and it knows that.  The film is wildly outrageous at times and no matter how much stock is put into the logic behind how this may actually be able to work, physics is not the thing that people have to worry about.  Deriving fun from the film is and director Guillermo Del Toro is quite happy putting his imagination on display and letting people consider that for themselves.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Out Now with Aaron and Abe: Episode 110 – The Lone Ranger




This week’s episode of Out Now with Aaron and Abe is full of Fourth of July-inspired joy as the guys are joined by guests Jordan Grout (in studio with Aaron) and David Yeh (newest guest, but fitting in nicely), to discuss the latest Disney-Depp adventure, The Lone Ranger. Additionally, all of the regular segments are present as well, including “Know Everybody”, “Out Now Quickies”, “Movie Call Back”, “Out Now Feedback”, and Trailer Talk (Runner Runner and The Counselor).  Plenty of fun is had this week, as the guys are all about talking extensively about movies, while keeping spirits quite high.

So now, if you’ve got an hour to kill…

Thursday, July 4, 2013

‘The Lone Ranger’ Trades A Pile Of Silver For An Overblown Adventure



The Lone Ranger:  2 ½ out of 5

John Reid:  You want me to wear a mask?
Tonto:  There come a time when good man must wear mask.

In 2002, audiences were able to see what came of a failed film that would have starred Johnny Depp.  This film was Lost in La Mancha, a documentary that chronicled the attempt by director Terry Gilliam to make a film about Don Quixote, only to be undone by production and budget problems, forcing the film to ultimately be shutdown.  It is an entertaining documentary, but a sad tale for Gilliam, Depp, and all involved.  After watching The Lone Ranger, a film that has had its own share of issues in making its way to the big screen, I wondered if seeing a documentary about the attempt to make this film work would have been more entertaining.  As it stands, The Lone Ranger is an overlong, excessive, and violent picture that has all the elements to bring the fun sensibilities of director Gore Verbinski’s ‘Pirates’ films to the old west, but only manages to do so, after a long build up.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Out Now with Aaron and Abe: Episode 109 – White House Down


This week’s episode of Out Now with Aaron and Abe finds Aaron taking the reins of the show for a good portion of it, as Abe is mainly around for just the beginning and the end.  Still, that doesn’t stop Aaron from gathering together guests Christian Spicer and Brandon Peters to talk about the latest explosion-fest from director Roland Emmerich, White House Down.  Additionally, all of the regular segments are present as well, including “Know Everybody”, “Out Now Quickies”, “Movie Call Back”, “Out Now Feedback”, and Trailer Talk (Escape Plan and Anchorman: The Legend Continues).  Lots of discussion underway this week, but be sure to note that Channing Tatum and Jamie Foxx are the kind of duo that won’t let you down, even if they blow up your house.

So now, if you’ve got an hour to kill…

Despicable Me 2: Attack Of The Minions



Despicable Me 2:  2 ½ out of 5

Gru:  Good night Agnes.  Never get older.

It would appear that the Despicable Me films are not for me.  Despite having a love for animated films, wacky humor, and films that have original songs and themes by Pharrell Williams, I remained unattached to what should be entertaining me quite easily.  The concept of pulling a reverse-Incredibles and having us follow a reformed super-villain seems like such a good concept, but I continue to feel fairly indifferent to the series.  A lot of it comes down the scripting of these films, which seems to be happier on delivering cute moments than having a film that holds together all the way through.  That said, many others were more appreciative of the first film than I, so more of the same may be enough for those excited about this sequel.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Find 'The Way Way Back' To Stories About Life In The Summer



The Way Way Back:  4 out of 5

[Note: I originally reviewed this for WhySoBlu.com, as a part of my coverage for the Newport Beach Film Festival.  Check out that site for my upcoming posts of interviews with the cast and crew of The Way Way Back]

Owen:  How sexy does authority look on me?

The Way Way Back is a fairly standard coming-of-age story about an introverted boy opening up to others thanks to good-natured people he befriends, away from his family.  The film is not breaking any new ground nor is it taking a familiar story to the next level in the way a film like Adventureland did, but it is incredibly likable, thanks to some key performances and a winning level of energy.  Not every film needs to be something new and in the case of The Way Way Back, it succeeds by going back to the basics and letting us enjoy a traditional tale.

Monday, July 1, 2013

‘The Bling Ring’ Gets Caught In Coppola’s Clutches



The Bling Ring: 3 out of 5

Rebecca:  Let's go shopping!

The Bling Ring is Sofia Coppola’s 5th theatrical feature and it seems like her least essential effort.  Coppola’s confidence as a filmmaker is certainly apparent, though this film, much like her previous film, Somewhere, relies a lot on repetition.  Much different from Somewhere, however, The Bling Ring is a film that is much more dynamic in pacing and use of edits.  Regardless, whether it is the subject matter, the characters, or the basic presentation, something about The Bling Ring made it only satisfying to an extent, as I felt it ended up having about as much depth as some of the personalities of the characters we see in the film.

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