Month: August 2007

Elvis Costello and the Attractions’ Get Happy!! The Album I Can’t Stop Listening To

I’ve owned this album for ten years, maybe more. I’ve always liked it. About two months ago I started playing it again frequently. About one month ago I’ve started listening to it twice a day, sometimes more. (At work, I spend much of my time with headphones on.) What is it about this little Irish pipsqueak’s twenty-seven year old collection of faux R&B...

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The Host, TNG 4

Trills are introduced to the world of Trek and they just may be more trouble than they’re worth. So much isn’t explained about their world here (wait til DS9) but the overall concept is pretty cool. A dual-life form of symbiote and host – kind’ve a Dr. Who thing, but the host (I guess) is a real person first. Anyway, gay rights activists were offended by this episode and they had a right to be. Dr. Crusher is willing to go to bed with Riker (whom she thinks of like a brother) but kiss a girl? No way. A real problem: and this happens from time to time — the LA surfer dude phenomenon. Was every casting person on vacation when they put out the call for Odan? Ridiculously...

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Half A Life, TNG 4

1/2 Lwaxanna Troi is back and she is as annoying as ever. This time she lucks into a neat episode. It is basically a mix between Sunshine (trying to restart a dying sun) and Logan’s Run (“Renew! Renew!”) Charles Emerson Winchester stars as the scientist with a date at Dr. Kervorkian’s. The ending is surprising. Well...

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The Drumhead, TNG 4

Sometimes I just wanna tell Picard to STFU. He’s never survive against the Cylons with his attitude, I tell ya that much. Well… turns out he’s right. We have rushed to judgement. But pretty strange that the Warp core just happens to go kablooie while there is also a Klingon feeling info to the Romulans on board. Pretty strange. ....

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BloodRayne (2006), Uwe Boll, D-

I hate to jump on the “Uwe Boll is the world’s worst filmmaker” bandwagon. . .but. . .Uwe Boll is (one of) the world’s worst filmmaker(s). My favorite was right before the closing credits, when the hero closes her eyes to “remember her journey” I suppose — and we see different takes of shots from the movie. As if there was a mandate that no footage go to waste. Anyway, if you thought the blood shot out funny in 300, you really owe it to yourself to see this. For shame Ben Kingsley. For...

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The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford (2007), Andrew Dominik, A

Before anything: Roger Deakins. Quite possibly most exciting, expressive cinematographer working today. He may be, in this film, too good. There were some scenes where I was so enraptured by the visual appeal of this movie that I forgot to listen to the dialogue. Seriously. A scene happened in the back of a general store – and the lighting, the framing, the smoke trailing up through the moustaches were so awesome I didn’t hear anything – and later I realized this was an important scene. Many shots are vignetted with old timey out-of-focus ireses that just never get tiresome. A great movie. Basically GoodFellas out west. Many people will name check Terence Malick when they see this, but that is false. Malick’s films are in love with their environment – this film is filled with a dark, slow rage. Brad Pitt’s performance is terrific, but the real stand out is Casey Affleck. He is absolutely superb. As is the original score by (?) Nick Cave. I was also fond of the Ken Burns-esque voice over shtick. A long movie, but the extended epilogue was so fascinating I wanted more. Lord knows how the general public will react to this movie, but considering how brooding westerns are just about my favorite things on earth, I am quite taken with this...

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Jordan Hoffman is a New York-based writer and film critic working for The Guardian, Vanity Fair, Thrillist, Times of Israel, NY Daily News and elsewhere.

He is the host of ENGAGE: The Official Star Trek Podcast, a member of the New York Film Critics Circle and challenges you to a game of backgammon.

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