Category Archives: Movies

Midwest has never looked as fun as in ‘Cedar Rapids,’ although Ed Helms shows early signs of Michael Cera Syndrome

Cedar Rapids posterCedar Rapids (Now on DVD)

Grade: B

Starring: Ed Helms, Anne Heche, John C. Reilly

Rating: R

I thought going to Ikea with my sister was hell on earth, but it turns out I was wrong, and I’ll never complain about it again. At least it’s not an insurance convention in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Then again, “what happens in Cedar Rapids stays in Cedar Rapids,” according to Joan Ostrowski-Fox, played by Anne Heche in the 2011 dramedy “Cedar Rapids.” Who knows what kind of weird stuff you might encounter when you head to the “big city.” You might end up making out with a topless babe in a swimming pool, partying with a hooker or spending a little naked time with an industry big shot in the locker room.

(Suddenly I’m feeling a little cheated I didn’t experience any of this at my last journalism convention in Portland, Ore. All I got was explosive diarrhea after having lunch at Taco Bell. Maybe it’s time to move to the upper Midwest?)

In the film, small town insurance agent Tim Lippe, played by Daily Show alumnus Ed Helms, is sent from podunkville, Wisconsin, to the glorious town of Cedar Rapids for an industry convention that culminates with the presentation of the prestigious “two-diamond” award. It’s his job to bring home the trophy, proving that his company is the best in the, well, Iowa-Wisconsin-Minnesota-ish region.

Continue reading


Leave a comment

Filed under Movie reviews, Movies

Now playing in my brain: ‘Jurassic Park’

Jurassic Park logo

I can recount just about every line from “Jurassic Park.” I’m not sure why, and I can’t help but feel like there are other, more important things for which I could use this space in my brain. For example, I would find it particularly helpful if I could remember to pay my credit card bill before the due date, set my alarm every night or get my mom something for her birthday.

Jeff Goldblum Jurassic Park

"What you call discovery, I call the rape of the natural world."

I’ve been blessed with the gift of being able to recite Ian Malcolm quotes, imitate Mr. DNA with remarkable fidelity and remember eerily specific details about the film (such as how Dr. Harding drives a gas-powered Jeep, which is bafflingly stupid in and of itself).

So, I embrace my gift. I walk around whisper-yelling “shoot her, shooooot her” and telling stories about how some west African frogs have been known to spontaneously change sex in a single-sex environment. (Come to think of it, I think I actually have an aunt who spontaneously sprouted a penis after a long weekend with her female friends. Life finds a way.)

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Movies, Random movie ramblings

‘Friends with Benefits’ proves Justin Timberlake is second-worst actor ever behind Roseanne Barr

Friends with Benefits

Grade: C+

Starring: Justin Timberlake, Mila Kunis

Rating: R

Spoiler alert below (but take a wild guess how this one ends)

Just weeks after the critically acclaimed mind-bender “Black Swan” hit theaters, leading lady Natalie Portman appeared on the silver screen opposite Ashton Kutcher in “No Strings Attached”: a movie all about casual sex.

Six months later, her “Black Swan” co-star Mila Kunis appeared in “Friends with Benefits”: a complete rip-off of “No Strings Attached” that, surprisingly, received much better reviews than its counterpart.

Given that all good things come in threes, we know exactly what this means: In about six months we’ll see Vincent Cassel is the classiest movie about sex since “Deliverance.”

Vincent Cassel

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Movie reviews, Movies

Top 10 Scariest Movies

Well, it’s Halloween, and that can only mean one thing: Tis the season for scary movies! Being a movie fanatic, and one who loves scary movies, I couldn’t help but put make a list of the scariest movies ever made.

If you don’t like my list or you disagree with my choices … well, bummer. Make your own list.

10. Deliverance (R, 1972)

I haven’t traveled all that much, but this movie has made me realize that I should put Georgia on my states-never-to-go-to list.

The plot: Burt Reynolds plays the role of an adventurer who takes a few friends —including one played by John Voight — down Georgia’s Cahulawassee River on canoes. What they find is anything but friendly.

The verdict: This movie is a classic piece of American cinema.  It’s manly, touching (perhaps a little too much so at times) and it gives you every reason you’ll ever need to prefer staying inside to exploring the outdoors.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Movie lists, Movies