Lonely, socially awkward dude becomes obsessed with an eerily lifelike female doll. Uh, I've seen that movie before, when it was a horror flick called Love Object. But if you can imagine the same plot transferred into a bittersweet romance and with the kink factor dialed way down, you'll have a grip on Lars and the Real Girl, a movie so softhearted it implies the silicone-worshiping misfit in question (Ryan Gosling) doesn't even have sex with his sex doll. They do smooch on occasion, though.
People always ask me why I love horror movies so much. That, I can't answer ... though probably for some dark, disturbing psychological reason we needn't speculate upon here. More concrete is when I started getting into horror movies. There was the first time I saw Poltergeist (at a slumber party in fifth grade; a year later, at the sixth-grade slumber party for my own birthday, I gleefully played host to a roomful of terrified classmates as we huddled in my basement, watching Psycho). Read more »
SCREAM QUEEN What kind of a woman tempts both Dracula and Frankenstein? Gorgeous Veronica Carlson, that's who star of Hammer classics Dracula Has Risen from the Grave (1968) and Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed (1969). Now an artist and devoted grandmother living in Florida, Carlson's coming to town to share her memories of the golden age of British goth horror as part of this weekend's "Shock It to Me!" film fest. Read more »
Breaking Ranks, which plays at SF DocFest Oct 2 and 3, will surely be appreciated by anyone still engaged with and infuriated by the war in Iraq. It’s particularly powerful to hear the first hand accounts of US soldiers who have been there and have changed their minds -- and have withdrawn their support from an endeavor they now see as a malicious folly. Read more »
Cleveland's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame announced its nominees this week. Of the nine nominees, five actually get inducted into that great hallowed institution, and get to take part in one of the more self-congratulatory ceremonies that makes its way to VH-1.
And they are:
The Dave Clark Five
The Beastie Boys
Madonna is maybe the most surprising -- or least? -- name. Hell, I remember being ten years old and hearing "Holiday" for the first time. Read more »
If you can end your Toronto International Film Festival experience with a movie that climaxes in a 10-minute fistfight (roofs collapse, cinder blocks are smashed, tables become splinters, ankle bones snap like twigs, and vengeance is won ... but at what price?), that qualifies as a joyous note in my book. Read more »
A young woman struggles to heal from the aftereffects of a traumatic rape in Lumo, a moving documentary about a tragically common occurrence in the Congo, "where rape is used as a weapon of war." In Lumo's case, she develops a fistula (which makes her incontinent) and may never be able to achieve her dream of being a mother -- plus, her family shuns her. Fortunately, she's welcomed into a hospital for rape survivors, staffed by kindly doctors and counselors, and populated by other women who've been through similar traumas. Read more »