Chris Chiarella

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Chris Chiarella  |  May 15, 2014  |  0 comments
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Bearing the lofty Jackass mantle, this feature film eschews the basic format of the erstwhile MTV series, which bombarded viewers with a string of standalone stunts and running jokes performed by a brave troupe with a high tolerance for pain. Instead, Bad Grandpa emulates the Borat model, crafting a basic plot and characters as a scripted backdrop for multiple outrageous set pieces that unfold before unsuspecting bystanders.
Chris Chiarella  |  Oct 22, 2014  |  0 comments
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At its best, science fiction sparks the imagination, inspiring the question, “What if…?” And in the world of cinema, this enthusiasm gives way to conjecture, even debate: Remember the decades of geek chatter about the version of Blade Runner that might have been, eventually leading to Ridley Scott’s Final Cut? We come away from Frank Pavich’s remarkable documentary Jodorowsky’s Dune with that same excitement. The second half of that title is no doubt familiar, either as Frank Herbert’s seminal novel or as the much-reviled 1984 film by David Lynch that it eventually became. The first part, not so much: Chilean-born filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky is perhaps best known for the surreal Western El Topo, widely considered the first “midnight movie” for its offbeat appeal.
Chris Chiarella  |  Oct 28, 2005  |  0 comments
"I put a good deal of thought into how my movies will look on home video."
Chris Chiarella  |  Oct 14, 2005  |  0 comments
The October issue of HT featured our one-on-one interview acclaimed director John Landis, but those pages were scarcely adequate to contain his boundless enthusiasm, and who are we to restrain the mind that perfected the R-rated comedy? We hereby present this unfettered version of our discussion with the man behind Animal House, The Blues Brothers (celebrating its silver anniversary this year with a new special edition DVD from Universal Studios), and An American Werewolf in London, to name but a few, in addition to Michael Jackson's groundbreaking video "Thriller," which once ruled MTV.
Chris Chiarella  |  Sep 04, 2012  |  3 comments
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An old adage (OK, I just made it up) says that if you’re going to make a movie in 3D, you’d better give the audience something interesting to look at. The Mysterious Island does just that, dazzling the eyes with nonstop wonders held together by a wholly adequate plot. Young Sean (Josh Hutcherson) is having trouble living the suburban life of a normal teen after the excitement of his journey to the center of the earth. And soon enough, a cryptic message from his missing grandfather sets him off on a new adventure halfway around the globe, this time chaperoned by his supercool stepdad (Dwayne Johnson).
Chris Chiarella  |  Jun 25, 2014  |  0 comments
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When you think about the serial nature of comic books and the virtually limitless stream of new stories published each month, big-screen sequels in this genre should be a slam-dunk, right? Unfortunately, Kick-Ass 2 loses its way; its themes becoming at once muddled and more clichéd. High-schooler/hero Kick-Ass (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) is upping his crime-fighting game under the tutelage of 15-year-old Hit-Girl (Chloë Grace Moretz), who soon faces her own identity crisis. Inspired by the duo’s exploits, an all-new team of masked heroes has assembled, just as the vengeful son of a dead mob boss begins recruiting his own evil army, and a showdown is inevitable.

Chris Chiarella  |  Apr 06, 2018  |  1 comments
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England’s super-secret civilian intelligence agency, Kingsman, is dealt a devastating blow by a mysterious new enemy. It’s been one year since ballsy-yetcompassionate Eggsy (Taron Egerton) and his crew saved the world from an eccentric criminal mastermind, but with their resources and personnel all but eliminated, they must now seek the help of Statesman, their American counterpart. Together, this unlikely team travels the globe to uncover the truth behind the recent attack, as well as the details of another ruthless plot that could soon kill millions.
Chris Chiarella  |  Sep 18, 2015  |  1 comments
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As popular as 007’s grittier, more credible exploits have been of late, fans raised on the character’s more extreme tendencies have wondered what those movies might be like if he had continued his cheeky, over-the-top evolution. And for them, there’s Matthew Vaughn’s Kingsman: The Secret Service. Here a small but well-funded super-secret organization, independent of government, is populated by consummate gentleman (and lady) spies, quietly risking their lives to save others and maintain peace. Headquartered in a posh Savile Row tailor shop, they have access to impossible high-tech gadgets, bold training, and virtually unlimited resources.
Chris Chiarella  |  Jul 14, 2017  |  0 comments
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Right or wrong, writer/director Damien Chazelle knew what he wanted. From the cinematographic techniques to the costumes and sets to the staging of the elaborate song-and-dance numbers, he employed every tool at his disposal to bring this uniquely Hollywood tale to life.
Chris Chiarella  |  May 31, 2013  |  1 comments
The toys are back in town, another classic is rescued from obscurity, and a bunch of really good actors behave really badly as doom approaches.

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