#267 - Much Ado About Nothing
Here’s how I imagine this movie came to be. Joss Whedon sent a hand-written letter to everyone he’s ever worked with, ever:
"Dear Disciples,
Join me at my home on May 5, 2012 to enjoy punch & pie, film a movie and swim in my Scrooge McDuck pool of Avenger’s money.
Sincerely,
Joss Whedon, Executive Producer.
PS: Grrr, Argh.”
Viewed on September 16, 2014.

#267 - Much Ado About Nothing

Here’s how I imagine this movie came to be. Joss Whedon sent a hand-written letter to everyone he’s ever worked with, ever:

"Dear Disciples,

Join me at my home on May 5, 2012 to enjoy punch & pie, film a movie and swim in my Scrooge McDuck pool of Avenger’s money.

Sincerely,

Joss Whedon, Executive Producer.

PS: Grrr, Argh.”

Viewed on September 16, 2014.

#265 - Death Wish
Anytime someone tells you that movies today are too violent and crime is out of control, just show them a movie from the 70s like Death Wish. What a depressing decade.
Although I gotta know, did gang members dress like this in the 70s? Obviously I don’t think gang members dressed like it was The Warriors, but if I got mugged by a dude in a leather vest with a bandanna around his neck, like the world’s lamest railroad conductor, I’d start beating people with a sock full of quarters too.
Viewed on September 15, 2014.

#265 - Death Wish

Anytime someone tells you that movies today are too violent and crime is out of control, just show them a movie from the 70s like Death Wish. What a depressing decade.

Although I gotta know, did gang members dress like this in the 70s? Obviously I don’t think gang members dressed like it was The Warriors, but if I got mugged by a dude in a leather vest with a bandanna around his neck, like the world’s lamest railroad conductor, I’d start beating people with a sock full of quarters too.

Viewed on September 15, 2014.

#264 - Birth of the Living Dead
Basically a glorified DVD special feature, but given the confusing nature of Night of the Living Dead’s copyright, I doubt there will ever be a definitive Blu-ray out there, so might as well release this separately.
There’s nothing really new here, but it’s nice to hear Romero himself talk about the political undertones, both intentional and unintentional that are in the film. Romero has frequently said casting Duane Jones as Ben was never a statement, just that he was the best guy for the job. But making a film in 1968 with a black hero who takes charge, slaps a white woman, shoots a white man and not acknowledging his race was a statement in itself.
I’m sure there’s a lot of pearl-clutching over the scene where a teacher uses Night of the Living Dead to make his literacy class fun for his students, but keep in mind, NotLD was frequently a matinee horror film that parents used to drop their kids off for. Everyone needs to have a movie that scars them for life as a kid, can’t do much better than Night.
Viewed on September 14, 2014.

#264 - Birth of the Living Dead

Basically a glorified DVD special feature, but given the confusing nature of Night of the Living Dead’s copyright, I doubt there will ever be a definitive Blu-ray out there, so might as well release this separately.

There’s nothing really new here, but it’s nice to hear Romero himself talk about the political undertones, both intentional and unintentional that are in the film. Romero has frequently said casting Duane Jones as Ben was never a statement, just that he was the best guy for the job. But making a film in 1968 with a black hero who takes charge, slaps a white woman, shoots a white man and not acknowledging his race was a statement in itself.

I’m sure there’s a lot of pearl-clutching over the scene where a teacher uses Night of the Living Dead to make his literacy class fun for his students, but keep in mind, NotLD was frequently a matinee horror film that parents used to drop their kids off for. Everyone needs to have a movie that scars them for life as a kid, can’t do much better than Night.

Viewed on September 14, 2014.

#263 - 12 Angry Men
"It’s always difficult to keep personal prejudice out of a thing like this. And wherever you run into it, prejudice always obscures the truth. I don’t really know what the truth is. I don’t suppose anybody will ever really know. Nine of us now seem to feel that the defendant is innocent, but we’re just gambling on probabilities - we may be wrong. We may be trying to let a guilty man go free, I don’t know. Nobody really can. But we have a reasonable doubt, and that’s something that’s very valuable in our system. No jury can declare a man guilty unless it’s sure."
As relevant to current events today as it was in 1957.
Viewed on September 14, 2014.

#263 - 12 Angry Men

"It’s always difficult to keep personal prejudice out of a thing like this. And wherever you run into it, prejudice always obscures the truth. I don’t really know what the truth is. I don’t suppose anybody will ever really know. Nine of us now seem to feel that the defendant is innocent, but we’re just gambling on probabilities - we may be wrong. We may be trying to let a guilty man go free, I don’t know. Nobody really can. But we have a reasonable doubt, and that’s something that’s very valuable in our system. No jury can declare a man guilty unless it’s sure."

As relevant to current events today as it was in 1957.

Viewed on September 14, 2014.

#262 - Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work
I was never really a Joan Rivers fan. I was a little young to really remember her on The Tonight Show and I had no interest in the red carpet stuff, the only thing that she’s done that I can genuinely say I love is Spaceballs and that one episode of Louie.
But A Piece of Work is a fascinating look at someone who refused to stop working. Someone who wanted to become an actress, became a popular comedian instead and parlayed that into talk show host, red carpet host, podcaster, author, and perhaps comedy’s biggest villain.
The documentary shows another side though, the typically acerbic, controversial, and downright mean Joan Rivers is shown to be just as insecure as the rest of us. George Carlin once wrote in one of his books that Joan became the type of person she used to make fun of and you can see it eats her up inside as filmmakers chronicle the year she was on Celebrity Apprentice.
The social media age has not been kind to celebrities, it broke down the barriers between us and them and showed they can be just as much of an asshole of anyone else on the internet. But for Rivers, someone whose public persona was an asshole, this documentary softens her image.
Viewed on September 13, 2014.

#262 - Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work

I was never really a Joan Rivers fan. I was a little young to really remember her on The Tonight Show and I had no interest in the red carpet stuff, the only thing that she’s done that I can genuinely say I love is Spaceballs and that one episode of Louie.

But A Piece of Work is a fascinating look at someone who refused to stop working. Someone who wanted to become an actress, became a popular comedian instead and parlayed that into talk show host, red carpet host, podcaster, author, and perhaps comedy’s biggest villain.

The documentary shows another side though, the typically acerbic, controversial, and downright mean Joan Rivers is shown to be just as insecure as the rest of us. George Carlin once wrote in one of his books that Joan became the type of person she used to make fun of and you can see it eats her up inside as filmmakers chronicle the year she was on Celebrity Apprentice.

The social media age has not been kind to celebrities, it broke down the barriers between us and them and showed they can be just as much of an asshole of anyone else on the internet. But for Rivers, someone whose public persona was an asshole, this documentary softens her image.

Viewed on September 13, 2014.

#261 - Invasion of the Body Snatchers 
Confession time: I’ve never seen the original 1956 Body Snatchers. Given the general hokeyness of sci-fi films in the 50s, Body Snatchers has to be praised for its willingness to hold back. There are no men in rubber suits, no giant robots, just these half formed pod people. Not that there’s anything wrong with giant robots and men in rubber suit movies, but Body Snatchers’ scares still hold up thanks to the minimalist approach and I imagine it was downright terrifying in the 50s. 
Viewed on September 11, 2014.

#261 - Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Confession time: I’ve never seen the original 1956 Body Snatchers. Given the general hokeyness of sci-fi films in the 50s, Body Snatchers has to be praised for its willingness to hold back. There are no men in rubber suits, no giant robots, just these half formed pod people. Not that there’s anything wrong with giant robots and men in rubber suit movies, but Body Snatchers’ scares still hold up thanks to the minimalist approach and I imagine it was downright terrifying in the 50s.

Viewed on September 11, 2014.

#259 - Good Morning Vietnam
 “Excuse me, sir. Seeing as how the V.P. is such a V.I.P., shouldn’t we keep the P.C. on the Q.T.? ‘Cause if it leaks to the V.C. he could end up M.I.A., and then we’d all be put out in K.P.”
Apologies for the delay in updates, I’ve been moving.
Picking the first movie to watch in a new home was a big decision, but Good Morning Vietnam is pretty much everything on my checklist: Robin Williams doing improv, a movie about radio, and something for political junkies.
Viewed on September 6, 2014.

#259 - Good Morning Vietnam

“Excuse me, sir. Seeing as how the V.P. is such a V.I.P., shouldn’t we keep the P.C. on the Q.T.? ‘Cause if it leaks to the V.C. he could end up M.I.A., and then we’d all be put out in K.P.”

Apologies for the delay in updates, I’ve been moving.

Picking the first movie to watch in a new home was a big decision, but Good Morning Vietnam is pretty much everything on my checklist: Robin Williams doing improv, a movie about radio, and something for political junkies.

Viewed on September 6, 2014.