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On the Big Screen

Nothing like a little comedy to lighten up the holidays

2014 has revealed several "trends" at the big screen multiplex. First, the romantic comedy which generally has a couple unite, break up, then reunite for a happy ending, now has trouble finding an audience. Second, lots of CGI bells and whistles does not guarantee success. Ironically, a washed ...

‘Ouija’ not a perfect scare fest, but will do

Don't play alone with a ouija board.Warnings abound about using the "game" that may open conduits to the spirit world. One could make movie after movie about urban legends that have arisen from adverse consequences from playing with a board to contact the dead. Hard to believe, it is just a ...

John Woo-inspired ‘John Wick’ a good vehicle for Reeves

"John Wick" has the most nondescript flick title in a lengthy time frame. Without a glimpse at the poster or a preview, you would, like Iosef (Alfie Allen), the young son of a Russian gangster, have no fear of the unkempt squiggly bearded nobody (Keanu Reeves) who steals his classic Mustang, ...

‘Tombstones’ a gritty mob-inspired drama

For those earning a living by drug trafficking, infernal conduct surrounds efforts to mask their "profession" as legitimate. When the wife of heroin dealer Kenny Kristo (Dan Stevens) is kidnapped, he does not dial 911 or call the police. He pays the ransom. The two dealers holding her hostage ...

‘Maze Runner’ holds movie viewers captive

A self-described who, what, where, when and why puzzler, "The Maze Runner" has a "Lost" stranded perception intertwined with an intensifying deadline for determining the risks of standing still or plunging forward.Once Thomas (Dylan O'Brien) emerges memory-less from a lift carry drums, ropes ...

In 50s & 60s, biker babes and boys ruled

Hot rods, motorcycles and black leather jackets in the 1950s symbolized Hollywood's youth rebellion characterized by James Dean, Marlon Brando, and Jack Nicholson, who portrayed characters running against norms either as defiant loners or in biker "gangs".Young women such as Nancy "These Boots ...

Fans of the franchise will enjoy latest trip to Miller’s ‘Sin City’

Combining modern elements of the graphic novel and harshly honed extractions that accent a 21st Century brutality and sexuality disallowed by the "code" in the film noir era, "A Dame to Kill For" (a.k.a. Frank Miller's "Sin City" sequel) accents stylish artistic backgrounds. The story wobbles ...

The ‘greatest football story’ ever told?

West Virginians remember the buzz and glamour associated with a Hollywood-style premiere. Warner Bros. shot for three weeks in Huntington during the production of "We Are Marshall," which, of course, concerns the tragic plane crash, the community's sorrow, and how they rallied to restart ...

W.Va. documentary filmmaker wins Emmy

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - A documentary produced by a Parkersburg native filmmaker recently took home a Heartland Emmy for Best Short Format Program at the 2014 NATAS Emmy Awards. The award-winning production, "Going Dark: The Final Days of Film Projection," profiles two projectionists during ...

‘Lucy’ one brain cell short of campy parody

Tip-toeing on a wobbly tightrope of hokum, the science fantasy, "Lucy" starring Scarlett Johansson presumes that humans utilize a minimum of cerebral capacity so the blonde, sassy and fashionable lady plunges into a neuron vortex after overdosing on an experimental chemical.Director/writer Luc ...