Abominable. Detestable. Dismal. Deleterious. Humorless. Salacious. Scatological. Revolting. Ridiculous. Vile. Wretched.
Only partially describes this disgusting movie, starring Mark Wahlberg and his foul-mouthed, bibulous , drug-addicted, good-for-nothing, copulating Teddy Bear.
Teddy Bears of the universe unite, join in a class action suit; sue for defamation of character. No matter the monetary reward it will take generations to erase the damage "Ted" has done to your once warm and cuddly reputation!
Achingly poignant, mythically powerful film, told from the perspective of six-year-old "Hushpuppy" (Quvenzhanem Wallis, a forceful sprite with a gift from the gods); living in the disastrously destitute Louisiana bayou; alone, she resides in a shack, next door to her abusive, alcoholic, terminally ill father, "Wink" (brilliant portrayal by Dwight Henry) in an island of muck, detritus, prehistoric, called "The Bathtub" a euphemism for an ark, comparable to "Noah’s"; when the deluge strikes, only the few, the "chosen" and their animals survive. This is a community rarely focused upon (herein lies the genius and prescience of Benh Zeitlin, Lucy Alibar; based on the stage play she wrote, "Juicy and Delicious"); comfortable in their inebriated squalor, entitled in their refusal to move from their doomed environment, weirdly, they demand and earn our respect.
The southern wild and their mythological beasts (aurochs) belong to "Hushpuppy"; she envisions a universe of magical equality, where opposites in nature and mankind find their destiny; she sees herself as a specimen for future scientific studies; her splendid and luminous imagination distance her; hovering far above her elders; she is an observer, and so innately formidable that you never fear for her triumphal survival. She is "the man"!
Hushpuppy, like "Ulysses", is challenged with vicissitudes that would fell most mortals; with each victory she is enhanced to the point of invincibility; she is "Eve" a "Valkyrie" , an "Amazonian" force , nature does not intimidate her, she thrives; she flies.
The cinematography is breathtakingly beautiful, reminiscent of the Big Bang Theory when universes collide, glaciers melt, the world is formed and mercilessly magnificent beasts thunder, plunder the land.
"Beasts of the Southern Wild" is profoundly spiritual; humbling in its magnitude; Hushpuppy is a metaphor for endurance, life; she embodies the immortal, and shimmers with divine resilience. We admire her, we are awed by her; from birth she inherently knew that all strength comes from within; she covets, protects and enhances its powers, every second of every day, with each breath she takes; she is mighty, magical, unforgettable.
Steven Soderbergh's intimate portrayal of the lives and performances of "male strippers' was an enlightening, enticing slice of reality for this neophyte; knew they existed, gave them no thought; realized for a certain segment of the female population they were a titillating source of entertainment. I was totally bamboozled, mesmerized and shamefully, overwhelmingly, enthralled with the scenario.
Matthew McConaughey is "Dallas" the owner and MC of Club Xquisite (Tampa, Florida); he slithers and shines as the sculpted, gyrating, teasing, tempestuous, seductor of the screaming, hyperventilating "ladies"; he ignites, and the rest of the "boys" feed their flaming fantasies. McConaughey (you either love or hate him; no middle, lackadaisical ground; I reside in the former) is flamboyant, stunning, slippery and sensational; his modulated, wickedly intoxicating, crooning voice, resulting in resuscitation of the worshipful.
Channing Tatum (who practiced "male stripping" in his juvenile, halcyon years) is incredible as "Mike"; proving once again he is not just a pretty face; an acrobatic moonwalker, sensationally sexy; gifted as he glides, sinfully alluring; no woman immune to his aptitudes ; melting hearts, wilting limbs; he conquers while on stage, but painfully struggling, with his unrequited dreams, when he exits Club Xquisite.
The success of the film resides in "Mike", a good, likeable person; sensitive to the needs of "The Kid" (Alex Pettyfer) a nineteen –year -old college dropout, living with his sister (Cody Horn). Mike's decisions, oftentimes go astray, but his intentions are genuine and spring from the heart; there is something "magical" about his kindness, sense of humor, love of living and quest to design furniture, you care about him and root for his righteousness. Tatum's performance is riveting and real.
Yes "Magic Mike" is raunchy, salacious, chimerical; not for the prudish or squeamish, but a jolly romp in a world few have trampled in; fun and exciting for those who have!
THREE & 1/2 STARS!!!
Is an abomination, travesty, an insult to the craft of filmmaking and a humiliating example of a auteur (Woody Allen) gone amuck. Out of respect for my, if at times limited, but still viable insights; I am composing this review in 15 minutes (which is approximately 14 more than it deserves.)
1) All the men in the film are clones of "Woody Allen" at some point in his life.
2) All the women represent the "forbidden fruit" he has either owned or held in a time/share.
3) The blatant metaphors for "fame", "misplaced adoration", "insignificance of the adored", "press power"; are bludgeoning at the Machiavellian, ad nauseam, level.
4) Puccini ("Tosca"), Leoncavallo ("Pagliacci"), Modugno ("Volare") are fortunately not alive to witness the desecration, "drowning" of their masterpieces.
5) Rome did not deserve this, nor did the audience!
ONE STAR! BECAUSE OF THE SOUND TRACK
A supercilious, insignificant, "like-infested" film about 30 -something's with too much time on their hands; not enough intellectual substance, just aimless individuals who have reached a hiatus, a cavernous lacuna that overwhelms them, stymieing their decision -making process or powers. Loss, love, grief are experienced by all; how you deal with the vicissitudes in life make you the person you are. Not holding my breath or anxiously anticipating the onset of maturity for these, not unlikeable, but far from galvanizing individuals.
Looking forward to this film because of its stars: Emily Blunt, Rosemarie Dewitt and Mark Duplass. Alas, a star can never (or hardly ever) transcend a poor script. This script reigns with the "impoverished of the impoverished"; in the running for first place with "The Color Wheel" (reviewed 6/24/12).
The title alone was a troublesome clue, foreshadowing a bland, uninteresting scenario; but optimism is my Achilles heel and I gave it a shot. On the plus side it is very short; fortuitously I only purchased a small popcorn and coke; so for a fraction over an hour I sipped, chewed and groaned through this supposedly unique love triangle. So regretted the temporary hiatus of my "Cassandra" gene.
To conclude, the sister's sister never did appear and the audience is left "filling in the blanks"; in actuality a variation on a theme of complete, pristine blankness; reminiscent of the Black Hole where light does not enter or escape; with alacrity, glee and winged feet I made mine.
ONE & 3/4 STARS!