Krush Groove (1985)

Review Krush Groove

Complex.com has been looking back at various classic hip hop songs for a while with interviews with those involved in their series Magnum Opus . It is an enjoyable look behind the scenes which shows how these songs came to into existence. In one of the latest videos LL Cool J’s Rock the Bells was featured and a clip of the movie Krush Groove was shown, where he had a small cameo. Despite the fact that I had seen quite a lot of hip hop related movies, this was one I missed. Time to add this one. Continue reading

Pitch Perfect 2 (2015)

Review Pitch Perfect 2

The original Pitch Perfect was an unexpected success. The expectations in advance weren’t really high, whih is why it managed to surprise many people, including myself. I loved it. The story about an a capella group, the Bellas, who had to form a team to win hit all the right notes (no pun intended).

This wasn’t only because the music choices were great and performed weel, but also because of the cast. Anna Kendrick carried the story, but the weird supporting characters were memorable. Rebel Wilson shined in her role as Fat Amy and Hana Mae Lee was very funny as the almost silent Lilly. Add to that the politically incorrect comments from Gail (Elizabeth Banks) and John (John Michael Higgins) as commentators at the various competitions and the result was a surprising, almost (pitch) perfect combination of these elements. That surprise isn’t there now and the expectations are high. Does this second movie manage to meet them? Continue reading

The Swimmer (1968)

Review The Swimmer

The Swimmer is one of those movies that probably wouldn’t be made. The concept of it sounds odd: A man, Ned Merrill (Burt Lancaster), is visiting friends and realizes that all the houses between where he is and his home all have a pool. He sees it as a river through the valley and decides “to swim” home, meaning that he’ll have to swim through each of them. Continue reading

Art and Craft (2014)

review Art and craft

That the art world is a special subculture won’t surprise anyone. For outsiders it is sometimes hard to understand why a specific painting or object is so loved or why the story about who made it is just as important (for example see the documentary My Kid Could Paint That) as what you are seeing. Various documentaries have been made who look critically at the art world, like F for Fake and Exit Through the Gift Shop.

Recently The Art of the Steal showed that art is, just like any other business, all about money. Getting a highly valued piece of art in your collection is important, because it will be the reason for people to visit your museum. The subject of this documentary, Mark Landis, uses that knowledge. What this forger did was copying famous paintings and then, after telling a story about a deceased loved one leaving it to him or pretending to be a priest, donate it to a museum. It is something he had been doing for decades and without knowing, over 60 museums were displaying his work. He seemed to be able to keep doing this, until he met Matthew Leininger, who worked for a museum in Cincinatti. Continue reading

The Captive (2014)

Review The Captive

Most movies are easily digested: You start them, don’t think much and after about an hour and a half you are hopefully entertained. Of course there is nothing wrong with that, but once in a while you need a challenge. The Captive is a film which manages to provide that at its start. Continue reading

Selma (2014)

Review Selma

A title like Selma doesn’t ring much bells over here. Is it the name of a person or a ship? In the Netherlands we don’t have much knowledge of American history. That isn’t to say that we don’t know Martin Luther King, his famous “I have a dream” speech and his shocking end. He’s the subject of this movie and Selma is the town where most of the story is set. Continue reading

Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)

Avengers Age of Ultron review

One of the most visually striking elements from the first Avengers movie was the long shot in which the camera showed all the Avengers in one swooping move through the city. Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Captain America (Chris Evans) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) managed to beat their enemy by turning into a team. They are now back and this second film opens with a similar impressive scene, all in one shot, where all the Avengers are introduced while attacking a Hydra base. This action filled opening shows a lot of promise, but does Age of Ultron succeed in keeping the movie at that level? Continue reading