Saturday, December 8, 2012
The only wide release movie this week is so bad there is a good chance it's on the way to home video by Christmas
Gerard Butler plays a divorced ex-jock who needs to be a father to his kid in the terrible romantic comedy "Playing for Keeps." Jessica Biel plays his ex-wife who just happens to be getting remarried. Uma Thurman and Cahterine Zeta-Jones play a couple of horny housewives who can't resist Butler. Dennis Quaid has a small role as a creepy team soccer dad who loves throwing money around. This may be one of the worst romantic comedies I have ever seen. Butler is a decent actor but this is not his finest hour. He stumbles though the movie as a good-looking, bumbling fool. The notion that no woman in town, even those who have suffered most from his womanizing, can resist this hunky, dim-witted, loser guy is, well, offensive and even …
Saturday, December 1, 2012
Brad Pitt plays a hitman who is sentimental and deadly.
Brad Pitt is a hitman brought in to restore some much needed street credibility to a weak-looking mob syndicate in "Killing Them Softly." Pitt prefers to kill victims “softly” from a distance rather than watching them get “touchy-feely” up close. While trying to fix things he works alongside local mob lawyer Richard Jenkins. James Gandolfini resurrects the spirit of Tony Soprano as a boozing, hooker-loving hit man who has lost his killer touch. Ray Liotta plays a poker manager wrongfully accused of ripping off the mob. They are a solid cast in a dark, artsy movie peppered with hard-to-watch violent scenes. Slow-motion bullets flying and brain matter splatters. They all try to convey the message that capitalism and organized crime are …
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
State Rep. Karla Drenner asks people to shop local this holiday season.
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
It’s easy to get caught up in the rush of after Thanksgiving, Black Friday sales followed by the ease and enticement of cyber Monday discounts. The trend of internet shopping and overnight urban camping in front of retailers entrances is perhaps an irreversible reality of today’s consumerism. Yet, last year ABC's World News with Diane Sawyer launched a series, “Made in America,” that focused on American manufacturing and our economy. The series made me think about possible economic implications for Georgia. What if our state and local governments, along with our school systems, leveraged their purchasing power to favor Georgia and local businesses? Imagine the impact to our economy and the jobs this could create. While there is little we …
Friday, November 23, 2012
Jack Frost takes a 3D animation adventure to save all that is good and nice in the world.
Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy and the Sandman draft Jack Frost to be in their gang to guard against all things evil as they protect the magical state of childhood in "Rise of the Guardians." Stars such as Alec Baldwin, Jude Law, Hugh Jackman, Chris Pine and Isla Fisher lend their voices to this visually stunning film perfect for the holiday season. I'll be the first one to say that it's easy to be cynical about holiday movies but this one won't let you. This certainly isn't a Judeo-Christian holiday-themed film, as you might imagine. That's what makes it a better than your average Christmastime film. Turning these mythical beings into superheroes is clever. If it does well at the box office I see a franchise in the …
Saturday, November 3, 2012
The bad guy in an old video game is about to become the good guy in a new movie. It's a wreck the whole family should enjoy.
The bad guy in a low-resolution 1980s video game is a reluctant villain who tears down buildings with his sledgehammer fists. He's ready for a change in today's high-resolution world in "Wreck-It Ralph," in 3D. In order to break out of this bad-guy image Ralph travels to grand game central, where there is access to every video game in the world. If he can win a few levels, who knows, he may become that good guy he has always wanted to be. The clever writing and character development is met with a solid voice-over cast which includes John C. Reilly as Ralph, Sarah Silverman as the voice of Vanellope and Jane Lynch as Sgt. Calhoun. There are dozens of retro games for the grown-ups and a solid storyline for the kids. As in the tradition of "…
Saturday, October 20, 2012
If you enjoy watching characters sleep while their furniture moves around them, I have just the movie for you.
A Nevada family plays host to a very odd 6-year-old neighbor boy whose unseen mother has suddenly been hospitalized in "Paranormal Activity 4." A group of young unknown actors jump into the Paranormal Activity formula without a hitch. The long stretches of green night-cam footage manage to creep you out as you try to figure out if you just saw movement in the corner. And when something eventually flies across the screen, no matter how much you try to anticipate it, you jump. A neighborhood witches' coven plays into the proceedings, adding to the drama. In the end, as expected, all you really get is a whole bunch of jolts and scares. If you have seen any of the previous films, it's more of the same. This time around I was more tricked than…
Sunday, October 14, 2012
Why voters statewide should vote for House Resolution 1162 — a constitutional amendment to allow a state-commissioned board the ability to approve charter schools when local boards refuse.
Sunday, October 14, 2012
Dear Editor: I am writing as both a parent of students who attend a charter school and a teacher who works at one. The school I speak of is Pataula Charter Academy (PCA) located in Edison, Georgia. This is one of the controversial schools that was created by approval of a state commissioned board rather than the local school boards. Now we are in danger of having our doors closed unless an amendment to the constitution is approved in the November election stating that it is legal for a state commissioned board to approve charter schools when local boards refuse. I am urging everyone reading this to please vote yes to this amendment. PCA serves students in five counties. All five of the local school boards of the counties that we serve …
Saturday, October 13, 2012
Six Americans are rescued from Iran in 1980 (true story), and now the real-life drama is a movie, and a good one at that!
On Nov. 4, 1979, a large group of Iranians stormed the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, taking 52 Americans hostage. But six Americans did escape. The story about how those six made it out is the set-up for the film "Argo." The six find refuge in the home of the Canadian ambassador. That's when CIA operative Tony Mendez comes in. He's played by Ben Affleck, who also directs the film. He cooks up a plan to fly in alone and fly out with the six, all of them posing as a film crew scouting locations for a faux "Star Wars" knockoff titled "Argo." It's a crazy scheme to get hostages out by fronting a fake movie, but it works…and, at times, it's very funny. There are some great supporting roles for Bryan Cranston, the CIA boss; Alan Arkin, the fake movie …
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Patch polled Georgia elected officials and activists in both parties to find out who they felt won the debate between President Barack Obama and Gov. Mitt Romney.
A flash poll of influential members of Georgia’s GOP and Democratic parties found rare agreement on the question of who won Wednesday night’s presidential debate between President Barack Obama and Gov. Mitt Romney. As a Democratic respondent put it, “Mitt is back in the race.” Patch tapped our panels of Democrats and Republicans who hold office, are former elected officials, candidates or party activists for twin polls that were conducted in the first hour after the debate ended. Patch received responses from 32 Republicans and 15 Democrats. The poll is not scientific. Of the GOP respondents, 87.5 percent said Romney won “by a wide margin” and 12.5 percent said he won by “a slim margin.” Democratic respondents were less emphatic about …
Saturday, September 29, 2012
A new animation about vampires is a twisted version of "Twilight," with a whole bunch of fart jokes. The good news is it doesn't stink.
Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy...they all come out in this 3D animation where monsters who have to get away from humans and the horrors of modern life head to Hotel Transylvania. Dracula (voiced by Adam Sandler) is the head of the house at Hotel Transylvania. And when his daughter Mavis (voiced by Selena Gomez) longs for the human world, problems arise, causing quite a scare for the hotel guests. There are more than a dozen celebrity voiceovers here which do add to the mainly slapstick animation consisting of supernatural chase scenes and jokes involving excrement, ectoplasmic goo, rear ends and breaking wind. The film is a perfectly Halloween-themed movie for kids, but leaves very little for the adults. It's a fun film but the 3D really…