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Movies for the Week of March 7th, 2014

Need for Speed
Veronica Mars
Bad Words


Need for Speed

Need_For_Speed_New_Oficial_Poster_JPostersMike White: I remember when this movie was called The Fast & The Furious but starred someone I could take somewhat seriously. Not having watched more than a few episodes of “Breaking Bad,” I don’t know much about the main character in this film but I do know pretty much everything that’s going to happen in this movie and don’t really care to see it.

Josh Hadley: The video games this movie are “based on” are devoid of story, empty when it comes to characters and this movie looks to be a perfect emulation of that. Not exactly something that makes for an admirable goal but one they seem to have hit in spades nonetheless. I thought these vapid, shallow and pointless excuses for car porn movies went out in the early 2000’s, guess I was wrong.

Cecil Trachenberg: With the popularity of the Fast and Furious movies, I’m surprised it took this long to adapt Need for Speed to film. It looks ok. Lots and lots of car crashes, most of which look a tad cartoony. Also, I have a feeling the end of the trailer spoiled a big escape sequence. Not in a rush to see it but most likely it will be a good time.

Charley McMullen:  Well, I was going to call Too Soon, but that was a really good impression of a Paul Walker movie! [tips hat]  These movies are not my thing.  Not even a little.  I’m not a car guy, so I’m not really not a car movie guy.  I am just not interested in any of this.  However, douche-y white guys love car movies, douche-y white guys love Jesse Pinkman, and I don’t know how long it’s been since your last visit to a mall or a Buffalo Wild Wings, but Sweet Creeping Jesus, there are a fuck of a lot of douche-y white guys out there!  This will win an MTV Movie Award for every sequel that will happen within the next five years.  Call it a fucking hunch.  For every movie like this that gets released,  a hipster dies of jean-strangulation.

Jillian Zurawski: Wow, the new Fast & Furious looks INTENSE! …But seriously, if they really wanted to do a movie of a random racing game, I think a Twisted Metal movie instead would’ve been a much better choice. Other than making me wish that were the case, this trailer doesn’t really invoke any feelings one way or the other. It just appears to be another generic notch in the “tricked out fast cars go fast, sexy women, uh oh trouble with the law, & we’re in trouble with bad guys & gotta set things right!” genre. But, of course they’re gonna show all the actiony stuff in the trailer, so perhaps it could be more on par with Gone In 60 Seconds, instead of The Fast & The Furious.

Alex Jowski: Remember last week when Charley chastised the trailer for 300: Rise of an Empire for it’s inappropriate use of a Black Sabbath song?  I’m doing that now with this trailer and the song from Muse they featured so prominently (that song, btw, is Butterflies and Hurricanes and it is fucking awesome).

Aaron Paul is a fine actor – but he’s no action star.  There’s a reason I called him Junkie-Cries-A-Lot from his role on Breaking Bad.  Watch the movie Smashed sometime – he’s terrific in that.  He’s an actor that can cover a wide variety of emotional depth.  What he cannot do well it seems, however, is convey an archetype of a character written without any kind of depth.  He seems so out of place in this trailer.  This is a movie about fast cars and explosions and all that typical action movie stuff.  And then you’ve got Aaron Paul trying to put in a real performance and the way his seriousness juxtaposes with the genre is rather off putting.   I’ll give the DVD a watch for curiosity’s sake – but there’s no way I’m experiencing this in theaters.

Martha Page: Just because I enjoyed the video game a whole lot doesn’t mean I’ll see the movie.  I liked the Need for Speed video games so much because I actually got to play them – I got to pretend I was driving that awesome car.  I’m not that doucehbag looking blonde guy behind the wheel of a car I so wouldn’t have picked.  I don’t have a game controller in my hand.  This isn’t Need for Speed.  Call your movie something else.

mister X: not even close to my taste but i will say this:
-advance previews have been saying this is better than it looks
-they claim that the majority of the stunts are practical not cgi
-for a vidgame ‘adaption’, gotta admit at least it looks like they tried

Veronica Mars

veronica marsMike White: I’ve seen a lot more episodes of “Veronica Mars” than I have of “Breaking Bad” so I’m slightly excited to see her again. However, I’m slightly afraid that this is going to be like Romy & Michelle meet Grosse Point Blank. I guess I’ll find out when I see it at the theater.

Josh Hadley: I watched about 4 episodes of the series Veronica Mars and I hated them. I know this series (somehow) acquired a cult following as I guess deals with the lords of the underworld are becoming more commonplace but a movie? I know it was Kickstarter funded and that says a great deal about the box office prospects of this endeavor… that no one besides the already established fanbase would be willing to touch this thing. As to the trailer itself, it looks bland (love triangles? REALLY?), insipid (“was that original enough for you”) and most of all juvenile (the bar “joke”).

Cecil Trachenberg: Not watching the trailer. I donated a nice chunk to the Kickstarter and have full faith this will be the movie the fans asked for. I should be getting my copy of the film a few days after it hits theaters. Can’t wait.

Charley McMullen I went into this trailer having never seen the show.  I still haven’t seen it.  I always meant to, but this is one of a handful of shows I always meant to catch up with some day.  Battlestar Galactica is another one.  Without any prior knowledge of the show other than knowing this is where Kristen Bell debuted and I am a big fan of her, I think this looks like a just-slightly above average “tough-smart-funny-disproportionately-attractive-for-a-lawyer” action movies.  This character is a lawyer, but might as well be a cop, or a secret agent, or a federal marshall, or whatever.  I will give the benefit of the doubt that the show is way better than this movie will be, so I’m trying to take this with a grain of salt, but it really did look a lot like a feminist Grosse Pointe Blank at a couple of spots there, didn’t it? But, on the other hand, Enrico Colantoni is one of the most underrated actors ever.  I mean, Galaxy Quest, you fuckers!  That guy’s awesome, and I’m glad that he’s getting more screen time.  It’ll be better than …I don’t know…Charlie’s Angels.  That’s something.

Jillian Zurawski: *SQUEEEE!* <—Pretty much has been my state ever since production was green lighted. In case you can’t tell, I LOVE Veronica Mars. Funded through Kickstarter donations, the project reached the 2 million dollar goal in a little over 4 hours, and fans ended up contributing 5.7 million total. Have to sadly admit, I didn’t even know about the campaign until it closed and the records made news. It’s been 7 years since the show ended, but the actors have managed to maintain the characters’ essences & chemistry, making it feel like the series never left us. Curious to see if any exposition will be covered filling in the plot cliffhangers from Season 3, which left fans wanting when the series was not picked up again. One thing that struck me odd in the trailer is that Veronica is still with her boyfriend “Piz” from college, but after all these years it appears she has yet to meet his parents, as he says that he’s talked her up to them & they don’t think he could have landed her. *shrug* No big deal, I just find it strange that they’ve been dating for nearly a decade & he’s yet to introduce her. Now, considering where the series ended & via the voice over here from her father saying she’s a big shot New York lawyer, I’m led to believe that Veronica gave up on her FBI dreams & perhaps followed Piz to New York for his radio career, as he had gotten an internship in New York. I really hope they do address why she decided against going into the FBI, especially since the DVD box set teased us with an extra feature of the pilot where Veronica is in the FBI. Clearly geared towards fans and having the same old Veronica Mars feel, it will be interesting to see if the movie ends up being enjoyable solely for fans, or if it has been made to also “hold its own” so to speak, and still be enjoyable for those who have never seen the show as well.

Alex Jowski: My first exposure to Veronica Mars was… just a few minutes ago when I watched the movie trailer.  I never had the opportunity to catch the show when it was on the air.  Not that I had anything against it, I just never had the time.  The only negative things I heard about the show were from Josh Hadley up there – so I guess it should be a pretty good show with a movie that gives it’s fanbase everything they’ve missed since it went off the air.   If I ever do go and watch the show and end up enjoying it – then I’ll watch the movie as I’m sure going into the movie without that prior knowledge I would miss out on just about everything.

Martha Page: I have no choice – I’m seeing this.  My husband loves the show and made me watch every single episode with him.  He’s going to make me watch this movie as well.  I’m not a fan of Veronica Mars but shhhhh don’t tell him that.

mister X: only caught the show once or twice so this is probably not for me, but damned if i can’t admit it’s AWESOME that crowd-funding allows stuff like this to happen

as for the trailer itself, it was cute n’ stuff but obviously it’s designed for the hardcore fans who paid for it…and that makes sense.

Bad Words

bad_words_xlgMike White: Jason Bateman directs one of those “man child who needs to grow up” movies. I imagine I’ll catch this as an illegal download sometime. I have no intention to pay for this one, sorry Jason.

Josh Hadley: I really, REALLY, do not like Jason Bateman, that said though this movie looks incredibly damn funny. It has a mean and yet centered sense of humor and could really work.

Cecil Trachenberg: ehhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

Charley McMullen:  This -not unlike the previous movie- looks just-above average for the Bad Santa / Dr. House sub-genre of antihero vehicles of recent years.  Riddles with clichés, but well-written.  However, this has the added stank of having been directed by the star.  That smacks of all the vanity project bullshit we’ve seen over the years.  Best case scenario:  this movie will be loved by a thousand people, hated by a million, but still talked about on podcasts in 20 years.

Jillian Zurawski: Oooooo red band! Not sure if loving Jason Bateman has anything to do with it, but I think this looks promising. Hopefully all the good parts aren’t wasted in the trailer though. Watching this kind of invokes the feeling of my first impressions of the movie “Ted” – in that it appears to be just cussing and vulgarity for the sake of such, and nothing more. But i LOVE “Ted” & it was more than it had appeared to be, and hopefully “Bad Words” has a decent story structure as well. Either way, it looks like it could be good for at least “a one see”.

Alex Jowski: I’m conflicted.  The premise of the movie is great and Jason Bateman playing this asshole entering in to spelling bees is fun – for a sketch.  I can’t commit to a whole film with that character though – not based on what I see in the trailer.  This character is such an irredeemable asshole and I hate him – which is fine for a brief comedy sketch where you are not expected to develop even a fleeting emotional attachment to a character.  But for a feature?  Where you have to see this asshole doing some horrible things and then suddenly feel compassion for the inevitable character arc?  That’s really asking a lot.  And there is a lonely kid added to give his future character development some weight – so this is Bad Santa without the holiday charm.  That wasn’t a terrible movie and I’m sure this one isn’t either – Bad Santa had some hilarious moments and if the trailer for Bad Words is to be believed then this movie will have some great laughs as well.  But Bad Santa was in no way a GOOD movie – it was a bitter, antisocial shell of hollow, hate-fueled depression masquerading as a comedy – I kinda think Bad Words is going to be the same.

Martha Page: Damn.  I’m going to watch this movie and I’m going to laugh my ass off and enjoy it.  But then I’m going to have to go online and bash this offensive movie along with all my fellow Christian Republican Mothers.

mister X: can’t front-this kinda looks like it could be my kinda shyt. if this  doesn’t get syrupy at the end, it has the potential to be one of those  really quirky dark comedies…those i dig


EnemyTiffHeadteaserposterFirst5901Mike White: Jake Gyllenhaal stars in another movie. He’s got a beard. There’s another Jake Gyllenhaal out there with a beard, too, apparently.  I’m not sure which one of them saw the trailer for the new Jessie Eisenberg movie — The Double — but it seems that 2014 is the year of the man who has a double. I wonder if either of them will have anything to do with time travel, but I imagine they won’t.

Josh Hadley: The trailer makes no sense and I care none to find out more. This looks stupid and frankly full of itself and I will have no part of this.

Cecil Trachenberg: Stopped the trailer about 45 seconds in. Trailer was going to ruin the whole story. I’m in, this looks very cool. Although given how it looks to be fairly intelligent, it will probably open in about 2 theaters. Gotta make sure there is enough room for Muppets Most Wanted.

Charley McMullen “From the director of Prisoners, comes Enemy”  I can’t wait for this guy to remake The Passion of the Christ but call it Jesus!  This movie does look interesting, though, to be honest.  Not good, per se, but interesting, which is more than I can say for most of the shit that’s come out this year.  I like Jake Gyllenhal.  Yeah, he was Bubble Boy, but he was also Donnie Darko.  It’s called balance, people.  The twins thing has been done, and probably better, but I do like a movie that I can’t fully understand every now and then.  It’s good for the brain.  I could see this.

Jillian Zurawski: I call tell something crazy’s going on by all the sharp music stingers! Other than that, I can at least tell there’s a doppelganger in the mix here, (possibly involving time travel, inter-dimensional, lost twin, or total-recall type stuff… who knows). Trailers set up in this way either hook you with the in depth unknown craziness, or simply because there’s an actor you really love in it. I honestly don’t care if I ever see this, but that’s mostly because of how the trailer was put together. It may very well be a great movie, but perhaps with all the crazy involved conspiracy suspenseful plots that have come out over the years, it’s hard for me to discern what’s worth watching based on an obscure trailer such as this. Based on the movie title though, I’m thinking that at least one of the Gyllenhaals there is probably an unscrupulous character of sorts!

Alex Jowski: There was a Fyodr Dostoevsky novella called The Double.  It was pretty good.  This movie looks pretty good as well.  I liked Prisoners and am surprised to see the director follow it up with something so soon that seems to match the intensity of his previous film.  I’m going to watch this.  But, from looking at the trailer I can’t help but notice a HUGE plothole starring me in the face.  The fact that every problem presented her can be solved with one simple thing:


Martha Page: Jake Gyllenhall has a beard AND a mustache.  Jake Gyllenhall has a beard AND a mustache.

You know… because there’s two of them.

mister X: atmospheric, surreal, abstract, doesn’t give away whole plot…did a 60 year old edit this trailer, cuz movies aren’t marketed that way anymore!

as for the clip itself…i’m mildly intrigued-feels like a netflix kinda viewing for me.

Next Week:
Muppets Most Wanted
Nymphomaniac: Volume 1
Rob the Mob

About The Author
Matthew Coats
Matthew Coats
Formerly known under the pseudonym of Alex Jowski. Site owner, movie aficionado, and film school grad. Matthew Coats presents reviews, some written, some as vlogs, and some as weekly shows, for a variety of different movies and television shows. After years of struggling to get his own projects off the ground amidst the normal routine of living, Matthew Coats decided to create a site in order to share and promote movie reviews, video games and much much more from talented and original people all across the internet.

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