Movie Review: The History of Time Travel

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The History of Time Travel * 2014 * Ages 13+ * 1 Hour 11 Minutes

😸😸😸😸🌑 4 Happy Lap Cats

“One small step for Russia, one giant leap for Communism.”

The History of Time Travel is a quiet, low budget fictional documentary that asks the question, “What would happen if time travel were developed secretly, for personal reasons, by a single family of scientists? Would anyone notice the changes?” It answers the question as the documentary is being made, in small increments, that require the viewer to keep up with the details of the storyline. Easter eggs abound, as the story plays out on both the intimate scale of a family drama and the large scale of 20th century history.

The story is told through fake interviews, staged photographs and stock footage. The science of time and time travel are explained early on. We’re introduced to physicist Dr Edward Page (Daniel W May), who’s assigned to work on the secret Indiana Project during World War 2 after President Roosevelt is informed that the Germans are disturbingly close to developing time travel. Dr Page works diligently on the project throughout the war, becoming obsessed with his subject and ignoring his family.

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Daenerys Targaryen and Natasha Romanoff: Two Powerful Women Meet Demoralizing Ends

In the Age Old Choice for Female Characters Between Powerful or Good, Wh*re or Madonna, Modern Writers Frequently Land on a Third Choice: Insane or Suicidal, Then Dead

When Joss Whedon’s dream came true and Natalia Alianovna Romanoff willingly flung herself to her death, I felt nothing. I knew from the moment she and Clint went off for the Soul Stone that she would die, but, stupidly, I didn’t quite get to the realization that she would be the one to kill herself – one of the few decisions she’s made for herself in her time in the MCU.

There aren’t a lot of options for women and girls to look up to as role models in media – not female ones, anyway. Growing up, I was always looking for female role models in media, and I frequently ended up in love with the ones who had agency, above all else. The “powerful or good” dichotomy that I wrote about in a post in response to the Frozen musical details the struggle I’ve always found in female characters. You can be powerful or good, have agency or compassion, intelligence or charm, be sexy or moral – wh*re or madonna.

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Movie Review: The Breaker Upperers

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The Breaker Upperers * 2018 * Not Rated- Probably PG-13 for Language, Nudity and Adult Situations * 82 Minutes 

😸😸😸😸🌑  Rated 4/5 Happy Lap Cats

Spoiler-Free Review:

As the poster above says, 6 different times, The Breaker Upperers is hilarious. It is, first and foremost, a wacky comedy that’s not afraid to go for the laugh in whatever situation it finds itself in, whether that’s with a newly pregnant woman becoming nauseated while sharing the news with a friend, or engaging in drunken karaoke on a party bus.

Actually, those situations are likely to end the same way, so maybe that wasn’t the example of opposites I was looking for.

The great thing about this film is that, while it’s a wacky, screwball, sort of romantic, sort of musical, sort of dark, comedy, it’s also real. It’s the kind of female-oriented film I’ve been looking for on Netflix, as I’ve watched their romantic comedies pile up over the last year, almost all so laden with stereotypes and misogyny that I can barely manage to finish one viewing. The two female characters at the center of this film are just people, living their lives, not heroes, not villains, not stereotypes, and not trying to be any of those things. So are the rest of the characters.

The Breaker Upperers was written, directed by and stars Madeleine Sami and Jackie van Beek, two multi-talented women from New Zealand, who have been friends for many years in real life. In the film, they play Mel and Jen, who have also been friends for many years. Mel and Jen own and operate their own business, the titular Breaker Upperers, who clients hire to do the dirty work of ending a relationship when they can’t or don’t want to do it themselves.

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Movie Review: Bohemian Rhapsody

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Bohemian Rhapsody * 2018 * Rated PG-13 * 2 Hours 14 Minutes

😸😸😸😸🌑 Happy Lap Cats

Freddie Mercury and Queen are musical legends. As with Elvis Presley and the Beatles, whether you love them or hate them, there’s no denying Queen’s talent, uniqueness and cultural impact. Bohemian Rhapsody, the film, chronicles their history, and especially Freddie Mercury’s history, with that legendary status in mind. Though he only lived to be 45, Mercury was such a larger than life, complex figure that no single film could do justice to his life and work.

This film, made under the guidance of the surviving members of the band, who still tour using the name Queen (as is their right), was created with the goal of preserving the public history and legacy of Queen and Freddie Mercury, and introducing them to new generations. In short, this film is meant to continue the legend. With that goal in mind, it succeeds.

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Movie Review: Roma

Roma Film Poster

Roma * 2018 * Rated R * 2 Hours 15 Minutes

😸😸😸😸🌑 Happy lap cats

Roma, written, directed and filmed by Alfonso Cuarón, is a project that is clearly close to the filmmaker’s heart. The film is a barely fictionalized version of a year in the life of Cuarón’s childhood, a tumultuous year which changed the family’s dynamics and drew them closer together. The ostensible focus of the film is Cleo Gutiérrez, an indigenous Mixtec woman who serves as the family’s maid and nanny, with a secondary focus on Sofia, the lady of the house and a stand-in for Cuarón’s mother. Cleo is based on Cuarón’s beloved real life nanny, Libo Rodriguez, now 74, to whom the film is dedicated.

The family Cleo works for, headed by Dr Antonio, lives in the comfortable Mexico City neighborhood of Colonia Roma, with their four young children (Pepe, Sofi, Paco and Toño), Sofia’s mother, Teresa, another maid, named Adela, a man who acts as their driver and their enthusiastic dog, Borras. In the beginning of the film, the children and the maids are laughing and happy. Cleo’s biggest problem in life appears to be keeping up with the messes Borras makes in the alley where he runs free and Antonio parks his massive Ford Galaxy, which barely fits into the space allotted.

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Movie Review: Netflix’s IO

Netflix's IO- Poster with Margaret Qualley & Anthony Mackie

IO * 2019 * Unrated/~PGish * 1 Hour 36 Minutes

😸😸😸😸½  Rated 4.5 Happy Lap Cats

IO, which is the name of one of the moons of Jupiter, is also a new apocalypse/slow dystopia film from Netflix. The film takes place in a time when a rapid rise in man-made levels of pollution reached a tipping point, which caused a snowball effect, wiping out almost all life on earth and making the air and water even more toxic. Most of the human race has escaped the planet to live in a space colony orbiting IO. Now, years later, the colonists are ready to move on to a new planet, outside of the solar system, so the last stragglers on earth must catch the final shuttle to IO or be left in isolation on the dying planet forever.

Sam Walden, a young scientist, lives on a small farm at high altitude in one of the last few places on earth with breathable air. Her father, who was a famous scientist named Dr Henry Walden, believed that the earth, its species, and humans could evolve quickly enough to survive this crisis, because the earth would also be repairing itself while life was evolving. He was against the migration to the IO colony.

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Movie Review: BlacKkKlansman

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BlacKkKlansman * 2018 * Rated R * 2 hours 15 minutes

😸😸😸😸½  Rated 4.5 Happy lap cats

BlacKkKlanman is a comedy-drama film that is a semi-fictionalized version of the true story of Ron Stallworth, the first black cop in Colorado Springs, CO. It follows his rise from a desk job to becoming an undercover detective, working on a case based on a classified ad he saw in the newspaper, recruiting new members of the white supremacist organization the Ku Klux Klan.

The film was directed by Spike Lee (She’s Gotta Have It) and produced by Jordan Peele (Get Out). It was written by Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott, and Spike Lee. It stars John David Washington as Detective Ron Stallworth, Adam Driver as Detective Philip “Flip” Zimmerman, Laura Harrier as Patrice Dumas, Topher Grace as David Duke, Jasper Pääkkönen as Felix Kendrickson, Ryan Eggold as Walter Breachway, Paul Walter Hauser as Ivanhoe, and Ashlie Atkinson as Connie Kendrickson.

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New Trailers: Marvel’s Runaways, Syfy’s Deadly Class, Captain Marvel & More

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12/7/18: Added Avengers: Endgame trailer.  12/8/18: Added Umbrella Academy trailer. Also, added Emergency Awesome’s breakdowns of  the Marvel film trailers, including his ideas on the Spiderman: Far from Home trailer (no footage from trailer, but it was shown at Comic Con in Brazil).

Christmas has come early this week for trailers, with Marvel rumored to be on a spree and Syfy putting out 2 more trailers for their new show Deadly Class, which starts January 16th.

Before we get to the trailers, let’s start with the new poster for Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel. It is so exciting to see her flying around, all powerful and lit up like Thor! You never realize how much you need to see something until you get it.

Glorious.

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Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD Renewed for Season 7, with One Agent Missing

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Is This a Sign of the Effect That Avengers 3&4 Will Have on Agents of Shield?

This is good news! Disney/Marvel/ABC announced today that Agents of SHIELD has been renewed for season 7, even though season 6 won’t air until Summer 2019. Many had assumed that the shortened, 13 episode season would be the series last, so early confirmation that the network is still supporting its original foray into Marvel TV programming is very welcome.

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How Star Wars Invites Trolls Who Are Toxic to Diversity

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Last week, Kelly Marie Tran, the Asian-American actor who played Rose Tico in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, shut down her Instagram account after being bombarded with racist and misogynist insults for months. Daisy Ridley (Rey) was harassed into leaving Instagram in 2016. John Boyega (Finn) has received similar negative attention for his Star Wars appearances.

There were many things wrong with The Last Jedi, but Kelly Marie Tran, Daisy Ridley and John Boyega were among the bright spots in a badly conceived story. Rian Johnson wrote and directed a film with a diverse cast that put the women and some of the people of color in prominent positions. Then he tore them down.

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