Archive for April 13th, 2012

13th April
2012
written by Adam

Five college friends head out to a remote cabin in the woods for some rest and relaxation; but, unbeknownst to them, they’re actually set to be the entertainment in what appears to be some sort of reality TV-esque game of death. Now it’s up to Dana, Curt, Jules, Marty, and Holden (Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth, Anna Hutchison, Fran Kranz, and Jesse Williams) to survive the ordeal and outsmart two cocky producers (Richard Jenkins, Bradley Whitford). But, who’s really watching the ritual and who will pay the ultimate price if things don’t turn out as expected. Written as a love letter to the entire horror genre writers Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard effectively have created a gem for folks who love to be scared and manage to keep their sense of humor in tact at the same time. Acting from the ensemble is a direct hit to the archetypes of horror, at times predictable but also loved, laughable, and still leaving room for the unexpected. And, with winks, nods, and direct references to so many horror films, including a merman, the film works as practically a complete encyclopedia of who’s who and what’s what in the genre. If there’s one thing that can stop the Hunger Games this weekend it’s The Cabin In The Woods, which incidentally is rated R.

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13th April
2012
written by Adam

From Director Lee Hirsch comes the controversial documentary that follows the lives of five families in the South and Midwest affected by bullying behavior for a year. Spanning the gamut the film examines the lives of families that have already lost children to bullying, those currently in the thick of things being bullied for various reasons, to those who’ve done something about being bullied—which in one case extends to an unlikely student bringing a loaded gun to school. With the intention of opening eyes and educating the public about the devastating impact bullying behaviour can have, Hirsch exposes the ignorance of a select group of school administrators and various law enforcement officers who would apparently choose to turn a blind eye rather than actually address the roots of the problem. Next comes the resolution and call to action for community involvement that looks to educate adults and youth alike. Carefully constructed to raise the viewer’s ire at the obvious injustice in a number of scenes, the documentary is spot on in delivering a potent whiff of smelling salts to anyone who doesn’t believe bullying is a serious problem. By all means an important film for all pre-teens, teens, and their parents to watch, my only major disappointment with the film comes from the final step—what can be done about the behaviour? All too often documentaries end with the almost textbook “What can be done? It all starts with you” copout answer, and sadly Bully is no different. For those looking for answers, there doesn’t really appear to be a clear guide here. I suppose the argument that the film’s intention is to “start the conversation or dialogue” could be made; personally, I just wish there might have been a bit more instruction or a citing of resources for those in need of help. Now with an appropriate PG-13 rating Bully is worth seeing, maybe a family matinee or rental.

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