Back in October Dono did a post about the Geography Club movie trailer and it peaked my interest. Not only was it starring two very handsome men, Cameron Deane Stewart (Pitch Perfect) and Justin Deeley (90210), but it also genuinely looked really good. I’m a bit of a gay movie junkie and love attending the VQFF every year so I’ve seen my fair share of tacky gay cinema. I’m happy to say that Geography Club was not your average cheesy bad gay movie.
Synopsis: At Goodkind High School, a group of students of varying sexual orientation form an after-school club as a discreet way to share their feelings and experiences.
A new gay romantic comedy called John Apple Jack is making it’s world premiere tomorrow (Saturday, November 9) here in Vancouver at the Vancouver Asian Film Festival (VAFF). John Apple Jack tells the story of a modern-day boy-meets-boy romantic comedy about finally finding love… after having slept with everyone else. I had the opportunity to watch the feature film ahead of time and I definitely recommend checking it out!
The film is written and produced by Vancouver’s Rick Tae, directed and co-produced by Monika Mitchell, and produced by Selena Paskalidis. Here’s a little more about the plot of the film: When a glamorous playboy realizes that his dream guy is about to get away, he turns his life upside down in a mad rush to confess his love. Tae’s semi-autobiographical tale unfolds around the escapades of John (Chris McNally), a handsome gay man and heir to a restaurant empire. John lives a lifestyle of extravagance – champagne, fast cars and fast men. But when he discovers his sister is about to marry his childhood crush, Jack (Kent S. Leung), John realizes that the wedding must be stopped. His life spirals out of control as he loses his job, his playboy reputation…and even his underwear.
“John and Jack were childhood friends whose lives have taken different paths. One is living a life of privilege but finds emptiness under its slick veneer. The other is earnest and lovable, but struggling to face his true desires. How do they bridge differences and find each other?” explains Tae. “At its heart, John Apple Jack is a universal love story of ‘opposites attract’ that will resonate with a wide audience. I’m excited to debut my first feature right here at home in Vancouver as it’s a tribute itself to the city’s culturally-diverse community.”
After last month’s Getaway I was really looking forward to a good movie to review. Unfortunately for Runner, Runner, this isn’t it. The gambling themed thriller doesn’t even live up to the genre, has a boring hero, an equally boring plot and an ending as predictable as rain in Vancouver.
The film is about Richie Furst (Justin Timberlake), who is a student and teaching assistant at Princeton University who gets all of his tuition money cheated from him by a poker website. Richie then heads to Costa Rica with proof that he was cheated to convince the site’s billionaire owner, Ivan Block (Ben Affleck) to give him his money back.
This movie is not for everyone. First off, if you’re obsessed with Ryan Gosling (as I’m slowly finding out half the man-loving world is) then you’ll want to see him as severe and lean and sexy as ever in this. Second, if you love Asian revenge movies (plays really), then BAM this is up your alley. Third, if you liked the film Drive by director Nicolas Winding Refn then you’ll love this because it’s basically Drive 2, set in Bangkok… with an equally amazing and eerie sound track. Oh, fourth, if you like violence: watch this.
Set in modern day Thailand, this is a revenge film about family honour and drug lord crime. The two protagonists are both severely flawed as they attempt to restore peace to their respective homes. Ryan plays the brother of a murdered child rapist who is tasked by the incredible Kristin Scott Thomas (whom you will remember from Gosford Park
Drop Dead Gorgeous but CERTAINLY not recognize) who acts as matriarch to this f-ed up family and who through horrendous guilt and near-incestual flirtation demands for retribution of her dead son. Ryan is pitted against a retired police officer who murders without shame the worst members of society in this vast asian city. There’s sword fights, massive gun shoot ups, beatings to death with bare hands and a lot of kinky sexy: if you’re into any of that, this movie is worth a look.
Wednesday night I had the unfortunate opportunity to see the embarrassingly terrible film Getaway, a film that packs an hour and a half with so many crashes, wrecks, flips, stunts and swerves that the audience barely knows where they are or what is going on at any given moment. After about 20 minutes I was nauseous with a headache.
Allegedly there was a very thin plotline somewhere underneath the crashes and explosions but I found it hard to keep track of or give enough attention to. The film follows retired racecar driver Brent Magna (Ethan Hawke) who comes home to find his wife has been kidnapped. He soon learns that if he doesn’t follow the instructions of a mysterious man on a phone (Jon Voight), his wife will be killed. His first instruction is to steal a car, and this is where the film goes downhill. Magna soon picks up an unexpected passenger (Selena Gomez), who turns out to the owner of the car attempting to steal her own car back from Magna. If this sounds as stupid to you as it did to me, you might as well stop here.
Cheap as in…. well, not amazing.
The only reason I fought the urge to ignore yet another “demonic possession” movie scoring a whopping 4% on Rotten Tomatoes was the protagonist role accredited to the ever-lovely Julianne Moore. The ageless ginger has constantly saved difficult movie after difficult movie for me with her tremendous acting ability and today is no different- though, this time she can only do so much to bolster this pained script. Honestly, I wonder if she was friends with the director or owed her bookie a couple mil cause things production seemed sloppy at best.
6 Souls is an admittedly scary look at the intersection of multiple personality disorder and demonic possession (according to this film they mingle). Julianne plays the role of a critical psychologist who debunks cases of MPD (actually referred to in the psych world as Dissociative Identity Disorder… but that sounds less sexy to the audience). Called in on a special case by her father, she starts to question how her (quite handsome) subject can so perfectly portray the personalities of other dead actual living beings. Played by Jonathan Rhys Meyers, the “antagonist” of the film also adds some decent acting chops to the film but between the two of them it’s really not enough to call this film an actual success.
Oh Kristen, can’t you please just focus on finishing the Veronica Mars film?
The Lifeguard is a boring look at an existentially angsting 30-something (good god I hope she’s not pretending to be in her 20s) who quits “the rat race” lifestyle of big city living and working as a reporter to return to her sleepy town in Nowheresville to take up her old home with the rents’ and job at the local pool as a lifeguard. Already I can tell you’re clicking to the next article. Yes, this movie is much more for those looking for drama, a pseudo love story and for us 20-30 year olds who likely have too much time on our hand to think about the minutia of daily comings and goings as they/we search for meaning outside of “making money and being powerful“.
Kristen Bell is by all means a fine actor in this production and there’s nothing hoakey or bad about it, but good lord does this thing move slowly. Focusing on her sad return to a simpler time, this movie follows the older lifeguard as she slowly but surely falls for a high school senior (I think his name is David Lambert… he is MUCH too young for me to call hot, but he’s cute enough for those into that type). The story is painful as you watch the blond regress but eventually discover herself through the eyes of a younger and non-spoiled younger man. To be honest, I did NOT watch this one all the way through but saw enough to warn you about it.
Melissa McCarthy returns to the big screen today alongside Sandra Bullock in the new comedy, The Heat. Bridesmaids director Paul Feig directs the film, so naturally I went in expecting another hilarious comedy.
The story has Sandra Bullock reprise her role from Miss Congeniality 1 and 2 as the stuck up FBI agent Sarah Ashburn, while McCarthy plays her unlikely, rough around the edges partner Shannon Mullins. The two have been unwillingly paired up and assigned to catching a drug lord. The two clashing personalities make for a hilarious combination and while predictable, garnered many laughs from yours truly.