The Couch Potato Report – March 12th, 2011
This week The Couch Potato Report has glory, the gory walking dead, and loveÖ love that will tear us apart.
The very first release that I have for you this week stars well-known Hollywood veterans Harrison Ford and Diane Keaton, alongside London, Ontario born actress Rachel McAdams from MEAN GIRLS, THE NOTEBOOK and WEDDING CRASHERS.
In the romantic comedy MORNING GLORY Rachel is a young television producer who ñ because she has no other options ñ accepts the challenge of reviving a struggling morning show programÖa program that has two hosts who do not like each other.
Ford and Keaton play the hosts.
MORNING GLORY is one of those films that isnít completely plausibleÖthere is no way that someone with McAdams limited experience would get the job producing a network morning showÖbut if you buy into the characters, and their stories, youíll enjoy it.
McAdams is just so likeable, that you canít help root for herÖher budding relationshipÖand her show, and Ford and Keaton bring their substantial talents with them as well, and as a result MORNING GLORY a film that I liked.
It isnít great, but itís nice, and I liked it!
Now, when it comes to this next releaseÖlike isnít a strong enough wordÖI did not ìlikeî the television adaptation of the comic book series THE WALKING DEADÖI LOVED IT!!
THE WALKING DEAD tells the story of the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse based on the comic book series of the same name by Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore and Charlie Adlard.
It is about a small group of survivors, traveling across a ravaged United States in search of a new home ñ one far away from the walking dead.
This show is well written, very well acted, has some great shocking moments, and is extremely enjoyable!! But with only six episodes ñ SEASON ONE of THE WALKING DEAD is far too short!! As the group’s desperation to survive pushes them closer and closer to the brink, you will wish there were more episodes, I sure did!!
Luckily the show has been picked up for a second seasonÖand we do have the comic books to enjoy as wellÖso pick them upÖthe show, the comics, all of them!!! And I hope you enjoy them as much as I doÖas I said, I LOVED IT!!
Two weeks ago, at the 83rd annual Academy Awards, this next release was named Best Documentary Feature.
It is called INSIDE JOB and it offers up a comprehensive look at the global financial crisis of 2008.
INSIDE JOB features a wealth of information presented through interviews with key financial insiders, politicians, journalists, and academics, as it traces the rise of a rogue industry which has corrupted politics, regulation, and academia.
The research and information presented are stunningÖ and Matt Damon does a great job narrating the pieceÖbut ultimately it suffers because the presentation of the research and information isnít very strong.
It is insightful and informative, but in the end there are just too many numbers. Had the way they were depicted and offered up been more interesting, the film would be much better.
I still recommend it, because of the information it does give us about the financial crisis, just donít expect it to hold your attention the whole time you are watching it.
There are some lyrics from a song called ìTake The Blameî that came to mind while I was watching INSIDE JOB, and they are ìYou can take the money, But can you take the blameî.
The song was co-written by a man born Ian Fraser Kilmister, a man better known today as just Lemmy, the leader of the hard rock band Motorhead.
Lemmy ñ the 65 year old man ñ is the living embodiment of the sex, drugs and rock and roll lifestyle. He lives hard, and he rocks hard and the documentary about him ñ called LEMMY ñ is a love letter to him, his music, and his lifestyle.
In addition to showing us Lemmyís world and lifestyle, the documentary also features musicians from Dave Grohl from FOO FIGHTERS and NIRVANA, Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper, Joan Jett, Slash, and members of The Clash, Guns N Roses, Jane’s Addiction, and Metallica talking about what Lemmyís words and music have meant to them.
As I said, LEMMY is a love letter to the man and it doesnít offer up much of an opposing point of view. Basically, love him or hate him, here he is, in a documentary that I highly recommend.
Alright, letís have some fun now with the guys collectively known as the Jackass crew.
Jackass was originally a television show that ran from 2000 to 2002. It features people performing various dangerous, crude, ridiculous, and self-injuring stunts and pranks.
Once the show ended, the Jackass crew ñ including Johnny Knoxville, Steve-O and Bam Margera ñ started to make movies and the most recent one ñ the third ñ was filmed in 3D and I have to admit that JACKASS 3D is a blast!!
Yes, JACKASS is stupid, dumb, idiotic, and fun!! I love it!!! It is a group of friends hanging out and doing dumb stuff with each otherÖand that is gold to me!! It isnít for everyone, but I thoroughly enjoyed it! I still donít know why they put themselves through thisÖbut I enjoy the fact that they do.
Plus, JACKASS 3D is available on DVD and Blu-ray in both 3D and 2D.
Comedy will always be subjective. What is funny to you might not be funny to me, and vice versa. Luckily there are many different types of comedy, so usually there is something out there for everyone.
If the JACKASS type of stunt and prank comedy isnít your style, maybe you would enjoy a comedy about terrorismÖand yes there really is a comedy out about terrorismÖit is a British film called FOUR LIONS.
FOUR LIONS is about a group of British jihadists who pursue their abstract dreams of glory, but their plans start to fall apart as their competing ideologies clash and the result is meant to be a cinematic farce.
FOUR LIONS isnít great, but when it works the film is very entertainingÖand it is often funny.
Should a comedy about terrorism sound appealing to you, pick it up.
We have arrived now at the COPACABANA…but not the one that is the hottest spot north of Havana, instead this COPACABANA is a French film starring the great actress Isabelle Huppert as a perpetually happy, yet self serving woman who has lived her life not caring about social conventions.
However, when her daughter refuses to invite her to her wedding, she decides to get a job ñ and keep it ñ to try and make her daughter proud.
COPACABANA isnít a great film, but it is interesting and full of characters who seem real. I liked it.
I also liked a movie called EVERY DAY.
EVERY DAY stars Liev Schreiber and Helen Hunt as a couple in New York City who are having marital woes, and Carla Gugino from SIN CITY as a co-worker of his who is looking for some fun.
He initially goes along with her because he is tired of what happens in his world every day.
EVERY DAY is not a great film, but it kept me engaged the whole time and I found it interesting. Call that a mild recommendation.
Finally this week is another great movie about a musician, but CONTROL is not a documentary, it is a movie about Ian Curtis ñ the enigmatic and ill-fated lead singer of the eighties band Joy Division ñ whose personal, professional, and romantic troubles led him to commit suicide at the age of 23.
THE BLU-RAY BEACON is shining on CONTROL this week since it is new to the format, and this Black and White movie looks amazing in High Definition!! It is so crisp and clear and it sounds amazing!!
CONTROL is a fantastic film about a very interesting, and ñ unfortunately ñ sad individual. If you have never seen it, I highly recommend it.
CONTROL, EVERY DAY, COPACABANA, FOUR LIONS, the tasteless but very funny JACKASS 3, the documentaries LEMMY and INSIDE JOB, the fantastic series THE WALKING DEAD, and the likeable romantic comedy MORNING GLORY are all available now for you to watch and own.
Coming up on the next Couch Potato Report
The theatrical documentary INSIDE HANNAíS SUITCASE, Clint Eastwoodís HEREAFTER, the BEST FOOD EVER, and the Academy Award winning film THE FIGHTER.
I’m Dan Reynish. I’ll have more on those, and some other releases, in seven days.
For now, that’s this week’s COUCH POTATO REPORT.
Enjoy the movies and I’ll see you back here again next time on The Couch!
The Couch Potato Report – March 12th, 2011