Movie Review: Sideways (2004)

In vino… funny! __ 9/10

SidewaysMaya: No, I… I like to think about the life of wine.
Miles: Yeah.
Maya: How it’s a living thing. I like to think about what was going on the year the grapes were growing; how the sun was shining; if it rained. I like to think about all the people who tended and picked the grapes. And if it’s an old wine, how many of them must be dead by now. I like how wine continues to evolve, like if I opened a bottle of wine today it would taste different than if I’d opened it on any other day, because a bottle of wine is actually alive. And it’s constantly evolving and gaining complexity. That is, until it peaks, like your ’61. And then it begins its steady, inevitable decline…
Miles: Hmm.
Maya: And it tastes so fucking good! Continue reading

Movie Review: Win Win

Subtle morality play w/ HS jock backdrop _ 8/10
Reviewed by Brian Wright

Win WinDirected by Thomas McCarthy
Written by Thomas McCarthy

Win Win is a terrific multigenre sleeper. It’s funny, even hilarious; it has mystery and action; and it features brilliant performances by the always-reliable Paul Giamatti and Amy Ryan. It’s also not a movie that wallows in treacly messages, and it’s not a movie that uses sports as a crutch for “finding one’s inner strength.” In short, it’s a wonderful, top-notch movie. — from user review, IMDb, Dan Franzen

Exactly. The kudos for this film lie in two general areas: story and acting. So it could easily be a stage play except for the difficulty capturing nuances of dialog of the ‘younger generation,’ mainly from Kyle (Alex Shaffer) the lead character who talks with the modern youth slanguage, in a clipped under-the-breath manner. [Though distinctly and with a moral force that belies his years.] But let’s back up… because this movie is all about making ethical choices. Continue reading