‘Super’ Review: A Schizophrenic Film About a Psychopath

Super, written and directed by the cult-equipped James Gunn, reminds me of two recent movies. The first, and most obvious, is Kick-Ass. Like that film, and the comic book upon which it was based, Super takes the last decade of our nation’s obsession with anything and everything involving people in brightly colored underpants fighting crime to its logical conclusion: a real, non-superpowered individual puts on brightly colored underpants and fights crime. Also like Kick-Ass, the movie is shockingly violent in the way it dissects our fascination with superheroes. Which brings me to Hobo with a Shotgun, the other film Super reminds me of. Hobo with a Shotgun is a grim, joyless piece of work masquerading as nerd comedy, in which a vigilante mercilessly exterminates scores of criminals who rape, rob, and murder scores of innocents. Super sort of falls into the weird, misshapen chasm between the two.

Continue reading

Top 100 Characters in Modern Pop Culture: #80-71

Well, better late than never, right? On last Friday’s show, Paul and I continued our countdown of the Top 100 Characters in Modern Pop Culture. We’ve each got our own lists, and on Friday, we revealed our respective #s 80-71. Be sure to listen to the show for our full run-down, but here are our picks with excerpts of what we said:

#80

PAUL: Chief Martin Brody (Jaws)

Falls into one of my favorite categories: the reluctant hero.

AJ: C.C. Baxter (The Apartment)

So many of Billy Wilder’s movies are so cynical, but The Apartment is one of the few where hope is allowed to shine through.

Continue reading

Movie Review: Peacock (2010)

Originally published on April 15, 2010

Director: Michael Lander
Writers: Michael Lander and Ryan O Roy

I went into Peacock as I am rarely able to go into a new movie: Totally blind. Usually when a film stars Cillian Murphy, Ellen Page, and Susan Sarandon, I’ll have heard about it. Not so with Peacock. I hadn’t seen the trailer, hadn’t read a review, hadn’t heard a plot summary, hadn’t even heard the title. I knew nothing of its existence. It’s like it appeared out of thin air. Was I making a discovery? Was this some great, underground movie that I’d be able to champion long before it was set loose on the mainstream?

Continue reading