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Ben Sears

The Obsessive Viewer Podcast – Ep 369 – Men (2022) & Our Father (2022) – Avatar: The Way of Water trailer, Ozark, and Better Call Saul

In this episode, Tiny, Ben, and I discuss the trailer for Avatar: The Way of Water and review the latest Alex Garland film, Men. We also discuss the new Netflix documentary, Our Father.

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The Obsessive Viewer Podcast – Ep 368 – Extended Potpourri – Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Euphoria, Language Lessons, The Gilded Age, The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent, and The Adam Project

In this extended potpourri episode, Tiny and I discuss a handful of recent movies and shows we’ve watched.

Matt Hurt's Columns 0

Movie Review: Memory (2022)

Memory, from director Martin Campbell, is the latest in the seemingly never-ending slew of Liam Neeson action films. Its plot is as bare bones as they come as it spins its yarn of a dual narrative between Alex Lewis (Neeson’s hitman with a conscious) and an FBI agent (Guy Pearce) who crosses his path. The straightforward plot finds Alex (who’s battling the early stages of alzheimer’s) turning his gun on those who hired him after he’s contracted to murder a child. Meanwhile, Pearce’s Vincent forms a connection with the young undocumented victim of human trafficking that Neeson has spared.

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The Obsessive Viewer Podcast – Ep 367 – Everything Everywhere All At Once – X, Summer Movie Preview, and OV’s New Theme Song

In this episode, Mike and I review the new film Everything Everywhere All At Once and discuss the upcoming summer movie season and premiere our brand new theme song, A Little Mad Sometimes (Theme from The Obsessive Viewer Podcast) by Mike’s band, As Good As It Gets!

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The Obsessive Viewer Podcast – Ep 366 – Ebert’s Great Movies Part 12 – Rebel Without a Cause (1955), The Conversation (1974), and  My Neighbor Totoro (1988)

In this episode, Tiny, Ben, and I continue our journey through Roger Ebert’s Great Movies List. In this installment, we discuss Rebel Without a Cause, The Conversation, and My Neighbor Totoro.

Matt Hurt's Columns 0

Movie Review: Deep Water (2022)

For the briefest moment in Deep Water’s increasingly ridiculous tonal massacre of a climax, there’s a slight glimmer that something sort of unique may happen. However, the feeling is fleeting as the film’s ending simply confirms what we’ve already assumed through the previous hour and a half; not only does Deep Water not have any idea what it wants to be, but director Adrian Lyne doesn’t seem up to figuring it out himself. Instead, Lyne poses the question, “What if an erotic thriller was devoid of sexuality while also lacking any suspense whatsoever?” The jumbled and maddeningly awkward Deep Water is the answer and it’s not something that’s worth seeking out.

Matt Hurt's Columns 0

Movie Review: The Adam Project (2022)

Though it can be rote at times (and downright bad in some places), The Adam Project manages to be a surprisingly good experience with an unexpected amount of heart.

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Movie Review: The Batman (2022)

Matt Reeves’s dark and angsty noir take on Batman finally hits theaters this week following production hiccups and multiple release date changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Batman finds a young Bruce Wayne (Robert Pattinson) struggling to make a difference in Gotham two years into his nocturnal crime fighting. Following the biggest drug bust in Gotham City PD history, a cryptic serial killer begins murdering Gotham officials and leaving notes at each crime scene.

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The Obsessive Viewer Podcast – Ep 364 – Ebert’s Great Movies Part 11 – Psycho (1960), Goldfinger (1964), and Alien (1979) – Academy Award Nominations, Music Biopics, and Fandom

In this episode, Tiny, Ben, and I continue our journey through Roger Ebert’s Great Movies List. In this installment, we discuss Hitchcock’s Psycho, Connery’s 3rd outing as Bond, Goldfinger, and Ridley Scott’s Alien. We also discuss the 2022 Academy Award nominations and debate the merits of music biopics and toxic fandom.

Matt Hurt's Columns 0

Movie Review: Marry Me (2022)

Sometimes a formulaic romcom can be fun and other times it can be excruciating in its obviousness. Marry Me, the new romantic comedy starring Jennifer Lopez and Owen Wilson, falls somewhere in the middle. The charm of Owen Wilson’s Charlie carries a little bit of cache when offset by the fame and spotlight of Lopez’s Kat. However, the film’s insistence on doing nothing unique with its concept and instead steering into the tropes of the genre is its ultimate downfall. Marry Me offers nothing to the romantic comedy canon that hasn’t already been explored to death in the late 90s and early aughts. It’s as formulaic as they come without much entertainment value.

Matt Hurt's Columns 0

Movie Review: Death on the Nile (2022)

Kenneth Branagh’s follow-up to 2017’s Murder on the Orient Express finds Agatha Christie’s iconic detective Hercule Poirot entangled in a murder plot aboard a cruise ship on the Nile. Adapted from Christie’s 1937 novel, Death on the Nile is an exercise in laborious plotting, weak characterization, and astonishingly poor visual effects. As a murder mystery, it suffers from an overabundance of motives and red herrings that are too easily introduced and dismissed. While Branagh does bring some slight pathos and intrigue to his portrayal of Poirot in the film, it’s not enough to leave a worthwhile impression.

Matt Hurt's Columns 0

Movie Review: Scream (2022)

It’s been two and a half decades since Scream (1996) revitalized the slasher genre and changed the game for mainstream horror with a clever, meta script from Kevin Williamson brought to life by Wes Craven’s masterful direction. Scream ’96 was as much a twisted love letter to the horror genre as it was a slasher in its own right. And it garnered three sequels of varying (though all solid) quality. Now, the directing team behind 2019’s Ready or Not, Radio Silence (Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett), have brought the Scream franchise back with Scream (2022), an endlessly clever and violent “re-quel” that honors Wes Craven’s legacy and shows reverence for the franchise he created with writer Kevin Williamson.

Matt Hurt's Columns 0

Movie Review: See for Me (2022)

See for Me is a home invasion thriller with a unique spin. The lead character is blind and relies on a service app called See for Me, where an operator guides the user through their phone’s camera. It’s a fine enough hook for the film to start with but See for Me quickly shoves the concept aside for a more formulaic thriller. Sadly, what could have been an interesting entry in a tired subgenre turns into a dull limp to its expected finish line.

Matt Hurt's Columns 0

Movie Review: The Matrix Resurrections (2021)

Eighteen years have passed since the Wachowskis concluded The Matrix trilogy and were met with varying degrees of disdain and disappointment from the fan base. Now, Lana Wachowski (sans sister Lilly) has brought audiences back into the Matrix with The Matrix Resurrections. With this installment, Wachowski reintroduces us to Neo and Trinity and some familiar (and not so familiar) faces as they find themselves once again at the whim of machine overlords who’ve imprisoned humanity in a simulated world.

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IFJA Awards 2021: “Mass” and “Drive My Car” Big Winners for This Year’s Awards

The Indiana Film Journalists Association has named “Mass,” an intimate and harrowing drama about two sets of parents facing off over a shared tragedy, as Best Film of the Year. It won four awards total, including Best Original Screenplay for Fran Kranz, the first-time writer/director who also was named Breakout of the Year, and Best Ensemble Acting for the cast of Reed Birney, Ann Dowd, Jason Isaacs and Martha Plimpton.