And the Oscar Goes To… Not a Clue

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Quickie Review: Emily @ the Edge of Chaos

Looking for something funny and quirky and thought provoking? This live performance documentary by the late stand-up performer Emily Levine will keep you laughing and scratching your head for all its 61 minutes.  It’s a hard one to describe. She’s telling jokes and stories, but relating everything in the world to the physics that controls the entire cosmos. Animated scientist characters voiced by John Lithgow, Lily Tomlin, Leonard Nimoy and others add to the fun. Her stories about her life and an illness that robbed her for a time of the wit and intelligence plainly on display here are an entré into her view that we are in the midst of a huge paradigm shift. It’s a lot to take in, but entirely fascinating!

Arty Chick’s Seven Picks: Week 10

This week is heavy on movies about couples. They include rom-coms and complicated relationship stories, and the characters range from criminals to musicians to politicians, from kings to bakers. The genres include classic dramas, and film noir, and brilliant satire. And there’s a good dollop of sex, for good measure.

They’re mostly from the 80s and 90s, though one is from the 60s. And something they all (except one) have in common is that they were nominated for a lot of Oscars, and won quite a few.

 

The films are: Moonstruck, Kiss of the Spider Woman, Body Heat, Nashville, Out of Sight, Four Weddings and a Funeral, and The Lion in Winter

Grandma

Grandma is a bare-bones indie that will likely appeal to those in the artier crowd who like a simple, dialogue-driven movie and the acerbic wit of Lily Tomlin. The veteran actress and comedian plays a lesbian Grandma named Elle Reid whose granddaughter Sage (Julia Garner) shows up on her doorstep requesting about $600 to have an abortion that is scheduled for later that day. Elle doesn’t have the cash — but she’s willing to help Sage get it. The two spend the next few hours cruising around town in Grandma’s vintage automobile in search of friends, and others, who may be willing to float them a loan or give them the money outright. Their unannounced visits rattle a few cages and stir up old memories, especially when they drop in on one of Grandma’s old male flames (Sam Elliott). Needless to say, there’s an interesting dynamic at play here – and it results in one of the more surprising moments the film has to offer.

Admission

This one sneaked past us while it was in the theaters, but it feels like a “stay home with a big bowl of popcorn” kind of movie anyway. It’s basically a pleasant flick in search of a genre. It’s not really a comedy or a romance or a romcom or anything else. It has a good cast, but there is no chemistry between the two leads, Paul Rudd and Tina Fey. And even though the characters are likeable, they are not given a whole lot to do. Perhaps the problem lies with the setting, the Admissions Office at Princeton University, not the first place you think of for hilarity and romance.