Archive for 2010

24 Films of Christmas - One Week In

We’ve been adhering to our movie Advent calendar (if not to our promise to blog about each of the films).  After watching Christmas special after Christmas special I’ve come to a conclusion — most of these movies suck. I feel that the word “suck” applies most directly to the steaming pile of cynical corporate shilling... Read more »

Movie Essentials: 2009

10. ZOMBIELAND. Stylishly funny and wickedly demented, Zombieland kicks serious ass and features a truly great A-list star cameo.  Jesse Eisenberg and Emma Stone are just getting warmed up - they're both going to have very long careers.
If you can remember all the way back to last year, then you’ll know that 2009 saw the rise of the Swine Flu.  Michael Jackson passed away in June (the same day as Farrah Fawcett).  Balloon Boy pulled a fast one on media outlets everywhere.  Bill Clinton met with Kim Jong-Il in North Korea to... Read more »

Movie Review - Black Swan (*****)

Black Swan.  107 mins.  R.  Directed by Darren Aronofsky.  Written by Mark Heyman and Andres Heinz and John J. McLaughlin.  Starring Natalie Portman, Vincent Cassel, Mila Kunis, Barbara Hersey, and Winona Ryder. I fully expect that there are people who are going to hate this movie.  I can hear the complaints now – too sexual,... Read more »

'The Walking Dead' Recap - 'TS-19'

Last night was the premiere of the season finale of The Walking Dead.  Does AMC use the same wording for the finales of Mad Men and Breaking Bad?  That’s just…awkward.  At any rate, here’s the premiere of my final recap of the premiere of the first season finale of AMC’s The Walking Dead. The two... Read more »

The Mouse House: A Look at Tangled and Other Disney Classics

BY ROBERT HAMMERLE, special guest contributor to Hammervision The sad but undeniable truth is that most “Baby Boomers,” including myself, have had a special relationship with Walt Disney that is impossible to define. Like Konrad Lorenz’s famous study involving geese, we were imprinted at an early age. Just as we hit our pre-teen years in... Read more »

(162) Days of Ron Santo

I made the all-important radio dial switch to WGN during the fall of 2002.  It was one of my first big grown-up moments.   Not long after I became a WGN devotee, the news around the Chicago sports world started to be that Dusty Baker had been tapped to be the new Cubs manager.  I... Read more »

24 Films of Christmas - Thomas and Friends Holiday Express

Thomas and his band of Really Useful Engines band together to (per usual) screw up, get cross, and then eventually do the right thing — All in the name of the holiday season! The Verdict: This was just a collection of the usual Thomas episodes (some narrated by the late George Carlin — Bonus!), but... Read more »

24 Films of Christmas

This is the first year that our son (who’s two and a half) is really getting into the holidays.  He loved Halloween, especially trick-or-treating and getting spooked by the skeletons on our neighbors’ lawns.  He didn’t quite get Thanksgiving (except for the whole pie part).  But he is already starting to get excited about Christmas.... Read more »

Movie Essentials: 2008

10. LET THE RIGHT ONE IN. This Swedish import was recently given the Hollywood remake treatment.  I loved the remake, and find it to be just as good as the original.  This one did it first though, and did it near-perfectly.  Screw those Twilight bloodsucker teens, for a real clue as to how to mine the vampire genre for hidden meaning and subtext, let this one in.  Both scary and touching.
In 2008, Barack Obama defeated John McCain to become the first African-American President of the United States.  Heath Ledger died of an accidental prescription drug overdose.  Miley Cyrus drew controversy by posing with a bare back and shoulders in Vanity Fair.  Madonna turned 50.  Blu-Ray beat HD-DVD in the high definition format war.  T.I. scored... Read more »

Movie Essentials: Leslie Nielsen

THE NAKED GUN 2 1/2: THE SMELL OF FEAR..  Nielsen reprised his role as Drebin in this above average sequel.
On Sunday, November 28, 2010, the film world lost one of its great comedic actors when Leslie Nielsen passed away at the age of 84.  Born in Canada, Nielsen started off his acting career beginning with television in 1948 – two years later, he had logged over 50 appearances.  Films followed, and though he took... Read more »