Then Playing — Laggies; This Changes Everything; Buck and the Preacher

Laggies (Lynn Shelton, 2014). There are other films that depict a twenty-something character’s panicked retreat from the looming responsibility of adulthood, but few make the minor insurrection as charmingly pathetic as Laggies. Directed by Lynn Shelton (working from someone else’s … Continue reading Then Playing — Laggies; This Changes Everything; Buck and the Preacher

Spectrum Check

I was kept plenty busy by Spectrum Culture, this week. For one thing, this week was a fairly uncommon instance of me having two films to review instead of one, although that was more a product of a slight tangle with the prior week’s schedule than any ambition on my part. So even though I shouldn’t have been scrambling to get it all in, that’s exactly what happened. I started with a significant disappointment: Lynn Shelton’s new film. I really enjoyed her prior directorial effort, but the new film is a mess, entirely wasting her best cast yet (and sadly … Continue reading Spectrum Check

Top Ten Movies of 2012 — Number Nine

With Your Sister’s Sister, writer-director Lynn Shelton positions herself as an auteur of particularly tricky terrain. She structures her scripts as if they’re challenges to herself, writing the story into tight corners and seeing if she can plausibly extricate the characters. It’s a little like she’s the creator of a television series that specializes in crazy cliffhangers, but instead of meth empires or bipolar spies, Shelton’s territory is far more treacherous: human emotions. As opposed to the earlier Humpday, which found comic drama in the trap of escalating bravado among two friends, both heterosexual, who commit to making a gay … Continue reading Top Ten Movies of 2012 — Number Nine

Jason, Milestone, Minnelli, Scorsese, Shelton

Humpday (Lynn Shelton, 2009). While I don’t always give the background on my viewing choices, I will note that this finally made its way from out queue to our screen in preparation for watching Lynn Shelton’s excellent follow-up. I’m mostly sharing that to give myself a public chastisement. Humpday is pretty terrific, providing a surprisingly plausible narrative progression to an utterly implausible scenario. Mark Duplass and Joshua Leonard play old college buddies whose reunion after several years apart winds up involving an odd pledge to make a man-on-man pornographic film together, in direct opposition to their heterosexual tendencies, for Seattle’s … Continue reading Jason, Milestone, Minnelli, Scorsese, Shelton

Spectrum Check

I had a few contributions up at Spectrum Culture this week, including one more than I originally anticipated. The first thing that posted was a review of the new album from Lemonade, which I actually forgot landed in my iTunes because I was supposed to write about it. So while I’ve been listening to it a fair amount since I got it, I hadn’t been thinking about what to say about it until the official deadline crossed my inbox. I think I pulled it together fine, but it was a little more of a scramble than it needed to be. … Continue reading Spectrum Check