The Other Woman: Nicki Minaj Actually Has an Office Job

Hello everybody! For this week’s movie club, we watched the hilarious Cameron Diaz romantic comedy The Other Woman.

THE OTHER WOMAN

STARRING: Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann, Kate Upton, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Nicki Minaj, Taylor Kinney, Don Johnson

DIRECTOR: Nick Cassavettes

GENRE: Romantic Comedy

YEAR: 2014

COUNTRY: United States

Kate is married to Mike and thinks he’s a great guy. But in reality he’s seeing another woman, Carly who doesn’t know he’s married. When he tells Kate he has to meet a client and won’t come home when in reality he’s planning to see Carly. But when Kate says she’ll go join him. He tells her he’ll cancel the meeting. So he tells Carly he has to take care of something at home. Carly then decides to go surprise him but runs into Kate and she freaks out and walks away. Kate later tracks Carly down and asks her if she and her husband are involved. She reluctantly admits it. And Kate has a breakdown of her own. They later get close and Kate is uncertain of what to do. When Mike comes on to her she thinks there’s hope. But she overhears him talking to someone and she thinks it’s Carly but she denies it. So they follow him and discover that he’s seeing another girl and when they tell her about him, they decide to get back at him. But Kate is still unsure.

The character of the wronged wife is the movie’s best creation, and Mann’s performance is its revelation. Mann has always been funny, but her performances have been usually within a particular range, playing off a sort of harried but knowing comic persona. But here she’s playing someone naive, and zany, and needy, who can’t shut up and is slightly ridiculous. At the same time, she must also be hurt, and worthwhile, and serious – the carrier of the movie’s emotion.

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If you see The Other Woman, watch Mann and don’t take her for granted. Watch what she’s doing – or rather how much she’s doing simultaneously. Her line readings seem intuitive and spontaneous, guided by some unerring sense of comic timing. Yet, while nailing every laugh, she ropes in aspects of the character’s history, too. The pain of her betrayal. Her anger at letting herself get talked out of having children. This is the ideal comic synthesis – all the laughs on the surface, but with all the pain underneath.

The Other Woman

Once The Other Woman trots out the gigantic, slobbering, non-house-trained Dalmatian for laughs, you can sense that somebody (maybe Cassavetes, maybe some studio dolt passing down unnecessary notes) didn’t trust that the women and their relationships could carry the story on their own. Or maybe they just learned the wrong lessons from Bridesmaids and decided that there really, really needed to be laxatives brought into play.

PROS:

  •  Female characters.
  • Character relationships.
  • Smart comedy.
  • Main cast performances

CONS:

  •  Dog/stupid humor.
  • Plot dips in some places.

SCORE: 7.5 / 10

If you have any suggestions for films/TV/Games/Music/Anime for me to review, drop me a comment! Remember: Like Media In Review @ https://www.facebook.com/MediaInReview?ref=hl Follow Media in Review @ https://twitter.com/Media_In_Review.

 

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Silver Linings Playbook: Bipolar Meets Commitment Issues

SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK

DIRECTOR: David O’Russel

STARRING: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Jacki Weaver, Anupam Kher, Chris Tucker

GENRE: Romantic Comedy-drama

YEAR: 2012

COUNTRY: United States

Against medical advice and without the knowledge of her husband Pat Solatano Sr., caring Dolores Solatano discharges her adult son, Pat Solatano Jr., from a Maryland mental health institution after his minimum eight month court ordered stint. The condition of the release includes Pat Jr. moving back in with his parents in their Philadelphia home. Although Pat Jr.’s institutionalization was due to him beating up the lover of his wife Nikki, he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Nikki has since left him and has received a restraining order against him. Although he is on medication (which he doesn’t take because of the way it makes him feel) and has mandatory therapy sessions, Pat Jr. feels like he can manage on the outside solely by healthy living and looking for the “silver linings” in his life. His goals are to get his old job back as a substitute teacher, but more importantly reunite with Nikki. He finds there are certain instances where he doesn’t cope well, however no less so.

Every single one of us is at least a little fucked up mentally. Obviously some people have worse conditions than others, but deep down there’s something tweaked within all of us – it’s part of the human experience.  And that’s what makes Silver Linings Playbook, the new movie from writer-director David O. Russell based on the novel by Matthew Quick, such an impressive piece of filmmaking: the lead character is described is an undiagnosed bipolar locked up after a violent attack, but his recovery and the sometimes cockeyed support he gets from his loved ones only exposes the fact that none of us are anything close to what could be described as “normal.”

Following intensely serious roles in “Winter’s Bone” and “The Hunger Games,” it is such a joy to see yet another facet to Lawrence’s talent. She’s already demonstrated a maturity beyond her years, but “Silver Linings Playbook” allows her to let loose and have a little fun while still maintaining a dramatic integrity.

On the flip side, Cooper gets a rare chance to show his dramatic side. The early scenes in last year’s “Limitless” (in which De Niro also played a father figure to him) were always the most interesting – when he’s shaggy and paunchy and depressed, before he takes the pill that makes him Bradley Cooper. There’s a mania to his performance here as his character strives to convince himself of his capacity for happiness, but also a raw dark side.

The romance is the point of the movie, but as this plays out, it lessens the comic potential that had been banked up so steeply at first: as so often in the past, it’s more rom and less com. We know Pat will transfer his affections – of course he will – and the first inklings of this strange possibility on Cooper’s damaged face are entertaining to behold. The actual shift itself, however, and the new emotional maturity in Pat it implies, are fudged. But Russell’s storytelling, pacing and audience reaction control are muscular and surefooted. This is a date movie that doesn’t offer the sophistication it thinks it does, but is as enjoyable and good-natured as the genre requires.

PROS:

  • Jennifer Lawrence performance.
  • Robert Di Niro performance.
  • Bradley Cooper performance.
  • Character relationships.

CONS:

  • Too much romance.
  • Not enough balance between romance and comedy.
  • Gives us the bare minimum.

SCORE: 6.5 / 10

If you have any suggestions for films/TV/Games/Music for me to review, drop me a comment! Remember: Like Media In Review @ https://www.facebook.com/MediaInReview?ref=hl Follow Media in Review @ https://twitter.com/Media_In_Review.

Don Jon: Addicted to Pornography

Hello everybody! Today we have an interesting film about pornography addiction, Don Jon.

DON JON

DIRECTOR: Joseph Gordon-Levitt

STARRING:  Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore, Rob Brown, Glenne Headly, Brie Larson, Tony Danza

GENRE: Romantic Comedy

YEAR: 2013

COUNTRY: United States

Jon Martello objectifies everything in his life: his apartment, his car, his family, his church, and, of course, women. His buddies even call him Don Jon because of his ability to pull “10s” every weekend without fail. Yet even the finest flings don’t compare to the transcendent bliss he achieves alone in front of the computer watching pornography. Dissatisfied, he embarks on a journey to find a more gratifying sex life, but ends up learning larger lessons of life and love through relationships with two very different women.

Don Jon is an interesting look at the deadly world of pornography addiction. Joseph Gordon Levitt embodies the character just like many of his roles, but he really takes his character and makes him whole. His character is definitely not always likeable (just like the rest of the characters in the film) but he could be easily related to by some people. I really enjoy the dialogue in the film, especially since most of the film they talk about taboo topics of conversation.

There were a few things that bothered me about Don Jon. I thought the film looked too cheap and like an amateur shot it. I know the budget wasn’t insane for the film, but felt like they could have done more. There wasn’t a single character I liked, which is disappointing especially since I really enjoy watch Joseph Gordon Levitt. Really disappointing.

PROS:

  • Main cast performances.
  • Blend of romance and comedy.
  • Joseph Gordon Levitt

CONS:

  • Dislike main characters.
  • Amateur style.
  • Could have used larger budget.

SCORE: 6.5 / 10

If you have any suggestions for films/TV/Games/Music for me to review, drop me a comment! Remember: Like Media In Review @ https://www.facebook.com/MediaInReview?ref=hl Follow Media in Review @ https://twitter.com/Media_In_Review.