Logan Lucky: A Review

Movie Reviews

It’s been described as a redneck Ocean’s Eleven or “Ocean’s 7/11”, but as catchy as those names are, they don’t measure up to the subtle genius that is Logan Lucky.

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Logan Lucky is Steven Soderbergh’s latest film starring Channing Tatum and Adam Driver as brothers who, with the help of a motley group of characters, decide to rob the Charlotte Motor Speedway. I have been following this film from almost the beginning. And by beginning, I mean ever since I found out Adam Driver was going to be in it (because I am low-key high-key obsessed with him and keep up with all of his projects). Also, it was filmed in Atlanta, so I had some personal ties to it.

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Anyway, for those who are not obsessed with Adam Driver and therefore know little to nothing about this movie, it was made very differently from other popular heist films. First of all, it was not made under the heavy influence of a major Hollywood studio. Soderbergh financed the film himself so that he had full creative freedom over the entirety of the project. He is a director who wears many hats, according to Tatum, who has worked with the director many times in the past. I’m sure you’ve heard of Magic Mike. Soderbergh does everything from directing to making sure he gets the exact shot he needs, and he is even the one at the end to tie it all together in the editing room. To ensure there wasn’t unnecessary spending, he cut most of the marketing and press expenses, which meant there was not a huge press junket for the film and there was minimal marketing aside from social media.

The economics surrounding the film were enough to lure me in, aside from seeing Adam Driver on the big screen again. And if that wasn’t enough, Soderbergh threw in the hat from directing in 2013, so I knew it had to be pretty good if it pulled him from retirement.

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Now on to the film itself, I absolutely loved it. However, I went into the theater knowing that it was going to have an “indie” feel to it since it wasn’t going to have that overpowering Hollywood studio touch. For me, that made it better. There was an actual story that was being told. It wasn’t just a spectacle for the sake of being a spectacle where laughs are forced down your throat. It was subtle in its humor, deadpan sarcasm from my favorite actor.

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The actors were incredible. The West Virginian accents threw me for a loop but became endearing as the film progressed. Adam as the one-handed Clyde Logan was amazing, as always, but I doubt I would ever find a performance of his less than phenomenal. I am not as well versed with Channing Tatum’s repertoire as I am with Adam’s, but I was pleasantly surprised to see such a real character portrayal from him. He was a delight on screen and deserving of the heart strings that he pulled. Daniel Craig was a fire-cracker. Even as someone who is not familiar with his role as James Bond, I was still amazed at the reckless energy he exuded as Joe Bang. He stole every scene he was in, which is a lot for me to say considering that meant I wasn’t looking at Adam Driver. Riley Keough played the Logan brothers’ sister, and she was just as fierce with her spit-fire knowledge of muscle cars and highways.

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The only performance that irked me was Seth McFarlane’s. It just felt like Seth McFarlane pretending to be an annoying man with a fake British accent and a bad wig. I feel like there are two types of actors: the ones who pretend to be someone else and those who become someone else. And surrounded by actors who so flawlessly became their characters, McFarlane stuck out like a sore thumb.

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Despite it feeling like an Indie film, it still was just a damn good heist movie. Even though as an audience member, I knew the premise of the film, I was still surprised with how it unraveled. As a viewer, you think you know exactly what is happening until you realize that you don’t. It was unsettling at the end, like clashing notes on a piano, but then once I got my bearings on what was actually happening, it left me with an excitement that carried me through the rest of the evening. I walked out that theater wanting nothing more than to turn around and see it again, to find the things I might have missed, to stare at Adam Driver’s beautiful hair once more (Ok, I’ll lay off the Adam Driver love).

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For those who may be expecting a plot-driven Hollywood blockbuster, it might have a slow buildup. The storytelling of the film is truly beautiful. As I’ve said a million times by now, it is subtle, but utterly engaging. When films try and force a reaction out of me, it yanks me right out of the narrative. It truly was beautifully written. In fact this is the writer, Rebecca Blunt’s, first script to be made into a movie. There were some theories that she is perhaps a ghost writer or doesn’t exist at all, but I like to believe that female screenwriters can write a kick-ass script right out of the gate without being accused a fraud.

So with this review/history of Logan Lucky, I urge anyone who reads this to go see it. If you get nothing at all from the film, well, at least you get to stare at Channing Tatum for 2+ hours.

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I Have A Lot of Feelings About This Episode Of Girls

lifestyle, Uncategorized

I just finished watching this week’s episode of Girls, and I have so many emotions right now that I felt the urge to write a post. Just be aware, there are definitely spoilers, so continue at your own risk.

Let me just start from the beginning. I have been watching Girls on and off since I was 18 (I am now 22), but I have really become obsessed with it in the last year or so. The fact that I have a very unhealthy obsession addiction to Adam Driver has not helped this. Anyway, from the very beginning, I have loved Adam and Hannah’s relationship. Yes, they had their issues, but I felt like they had both grown so much since the beginning, that maybe they could finally live happily ever after. But of course, we can’t always get what we want.

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Ever since I first saw the teaser last week for this week’s episode, I’ve been thinking about how they could possibly resolve the show. Because, let’s face it, we only have two more episodes left. To be honest, I was completely under the impression that Adam and Hannah would end up together, but when Lena was doing press before the season started, she made some comments about Hannah and Adam’s relationship. Basically, she said that she was surprised that so many people wanted them back together because that meant she hadn’t done a good enough job of showing how messed up their relationship was. From that moment, I had been mentally preparing myself for complete and utter heartbreak. Instead, I found myself very conflicted.

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This week’s episode starts with Adam telling Jessa that he wants to raise Hannah’s baby with her, and Jessa is seemingly okay about the whole thing, which was unsettling to me. Because, like everything about them is so explosive especially when it involves Hannah. But whatever. Then, the rest of the episode is like one big happy montage of Hannah and Adam being in love. I thought I would be ecstatic, but there was something in the pit of my stomach that knew it wasn’t going to last. They had been too far gone.

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What really shocked me was how guilty I felt for wanting Adam and Hannah to be together when it was obvious that Jessa needed Adam. Seeing her go back to her old ways of hooking up with random men in bars really hurt me. There was also a very strong parallel to Jessa walking into bar, and it was later confirmed in the “Inside the Episode”. The shot of Jessa walking down the street into the bar was the same shot they did in the first season when Jessa decided to go into a bar instead of have her abortion. It was obvious that her way of dealing with her feelings made her revert to her old ways, but she couldn’t just disappear into her old vices. When she said “I don’t want you” to the guy she was hooking up with, my heart broke for her. But then, seeing Adam and Hannah together again was so satisfying, which made me feel even more conflicted.

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In a way, Adam making that movie about him and Hannah was a self-proclaiming prophesy. Because when he was filming he mentioned something about even though they wanted to be together, the relationship was too intense to survive. And once they find themselves sitting in a diner, planning out their lives as parents, it becomes obvious to them that they can’t be together. Watching them cry reminded me of the end of season 4 (which is both my favorite and least favorite season finale) when they are faced with the reality of being back together, but know that it just won’t work. Throughout the show, they have tried and tried again, but they just aren’t good together. I think it was hardest for me to come to this conclusion (haha).


I can’t believe, though, that Jessa would just let Adam come back knowing that she is essentially his second choice. It’s sad. But at least she knows that being with him makes her happy. I feel like a part of her always considered herself this lone-wolf, but once she found herself actually alone, she realized that she wanted more. Also, she thought she was pregnant in season 1 when she went into that bar and hooked up with someone, and this season there was a scene of her throwing up and then going into the bar just like before. Seeing those parallels made me realize how much Jessa has also grown throughout the years, and she deserves to be with the person she loves. I feel like Jessa in the first season would have been too prideful to admit that she needed somebody; at least she is strong enough to make a decision based on her overall happiness rather than “winning”.

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I have to admit, if Hannah wasn’t going to be with Adam, I would have wanted her to be alone anyway, because she is a strong, independent woman who don’t need no man!

This show makes me so happy and so sad all at the same time, but I will never tire of these characters. This is a show that I will re-watch over and over again. And I will fight anyone who thinks that Girls is anything short of genius.

Get Out: A Review

Movie Reviews

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! I know I did. MAC was together again for another weekend of adventures. They came over to my neck of the woods and we grabbed dinner at Mellow Mushroom. We had a really great night just laughing and hanging out. We originally planned on seeing Get Out Friday night, but it had a really late showing and 2/3 of us are basically grandmas. 

So, we decided to see it Saturday at the Collections in Forsyth. I have been really looking forward to this movie ever since Allison Williams started promoting it on her social media. And then all of the reviews came pouring in and I had to see it. 

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I won’t give any spoilers but it really was amazing. It was the typical horror/suspense movie on the surface but the underlying truth of racism in America made this movie so moving and beautiful. This film sheds light on how ignorant some people are towards minorities. You are able to experience the film through Chris’s ( the protagonist) perspective. At least for me, it was really eye opening to see something firsthand that I have had the privilege not to experience. 


It’s one of those movies that I want to watch over and over. Even now, I feel like I can’t do it justice because there’s so much I probably missed and didn’t notice the first time. 

My face throughout the entirety of this film tbh


After seeing this movie, I want to bring everyone I know to see it. I hope it opens people’s minds and brings them awareness to what happens everyday all around them. 

Whoever you are or wherever you’re from, just Get Out and see this movie! (I’m sorry. I couldn’t resist.)

***Images from Google 

Paterson: A Review

Movie Reviews, Uncategorized

I saw a film last night at the Midtown Art Cinema in Atlanta, and I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it. Paterson is Jim Jarmusch’s latest work about a bus driver/poet named Paterson who lives in Paterson, NJ. The film follows Paterson and his wife, Laura over a span of seven days while they go about their life. Nothing monumental or life-changing happens, and yet there is a noticeable shift in the characters by the end of the film. I’ve never experienced anything quite like this. I’ve never felt more peaceful or been more creatively inspired by a movie before. I am not well versed in any of Jarmusch’s previous works, so I’m not sure if this is his style or not, but it was unbelievably refreshing to see a film so devoid of conflict. Like any film, it has a rising action and a resolution at the end, but it is a very gradual rise and fall. It is really hard to explain why I love this movie, other than the fact that it stars my favorite actor right now, Adam Driver. I have been following this film since it made its first premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in May, and without having even seen it, I knew it was going to be one that I watched over and over.

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Even though I was prepared for it to be a pretty mellow movie, I still tensed as if waiting for the other shoe to drop. The music in the beginning had a horror feel to it as Paterson walked unassumingly to work, and I was tense as I awaited the impending doom I was sure was to come. But nothing really bad ever happened. We were teased by potential dangers, like the threat of Marvin, Paterson and Laura’s English Bulldog, being kidnapped or even when (SPOILER) Everett brings a fake gun into the bar. No matter what situation arose, Paterson still woke up the next morning in bed with Laura.

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Their relationship, by the way, is so beautiful and pure. Their love and mutual understanding of each other is the real heart of the film. Everything Paterson does is for her. He starts and ends and his day by her side, and their relationship is such a beautiful portrayal of two people in long-lasting love. Where Paterson internalizes his art, Laura is so energetic and outward with her art. They are a perfect balance. She supports him and encourages him just as he encourages her ever-changing dreams. It is very rare for such a thing to be captured in film and television. Especially since everything portrayed in television and film is so revolved around sex and drama. By no means am I saying that it is perfect, because I firmly believe that there is always room for improvement, but it’s pretty close to what I consider perfection.

The only thing that irked me was Laura’s constant berating for Paterson to make copies of his poetry. Poetry is just a part of him, and who says that you have to share your talents with the world? Sometimes it is nice to keep them to yourself for a bit. After all, that is where they are most safe. I also feel that since Paterson analyzes and observes everything, his poetry wouldn’t be the same if he knew that other people would potentially read it. By keeping it in his secret notebook, he was able to write freely without inhibitions. There was one scene where I thought he might have regretted not making copies of his poems. When he was in his study in the basement, he was looking at William Carlos Williams’s book and it felt like maybe he had a bit of yearning to have one of his own.

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I didn’t realize how much I had to say about this film until I sat down to write, but I want to touch a bit on the acting. The whole cast was phenomenal. My favorite kind of acting is the kind where I don’t even realize I’m at a movie. Golshifteh Farahani was strikingly beautiful and delicate in comparison to Driver’s lanky, yet bulky stature. He seemed to hunch his way around the house, where Farahani moved as graceful and lithe as a bird. There were a few scenes between Paterson and Laura that pulled me away, but I’d have to re-watch the movie to see why I felt that way exactly. Overall, though, it was incredible. Adam Driver was amazing, but I’m kind of biased since I will literally see anything he does. He could do a three-hour-long movie about him eating cereal and I would think it was a masterpiece. But seriously, he is such a unique actor. He is unexpected in his movements and is a master of the micro-expression. He is silent the majority of the film, but not in the “lights on, but nobody’s home” way. You can see him listening and absorbing everything around him and it is beautiful. I want to go on the record here and now by saying that he is going to be one of the greats. I think that too many people get caught up in superficial expectations for actors in “the business”, and not enough people see what true craftsmanship looks like.

I highly recommend this film to literally everyone.

The Genius of ‘Girls’

Movie Reviews

HBO (Home Box Office) is a Time Warner owned premium cable and satellite television network. Its programming consists mostly of original television shows and movies or documentaries that have been made specifically for cable. One of HBO’s original television shows is Girls, which was created, directed and starred in by Lena Dunham. The show’s premise and many other factors came from aspects of Dunham’s personal life. Throughout its five seasons (the sixth and final season comes out this spring), the show has received a lot of backlash for the characters and overall themes. However, it is because of the conflicts in and around the show that make it a great show for this generation.

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Girls is a satirical sitcom about five girls trying to “make it” in New York post-collegiate. It is a social commentary on white privilege that exists so prominently in America today. The show begins with Hannah Horvath, played by Lena Dunham, an aspiring writer who was cut off financially from her parents so she is forced to find a real job in order to keep living in New York. All of the characters seem shallow and two-dimensional on a first impression, but as the show progresses so do their developments. The show faced many criticisms, mostly for Dunham’s constant and unabashed nudity as well as its all-white cast. The lack of diversity is very significant to the story that Dunham is telling throughout the series. That a story could even be told in New York with an all-white cast is comical, but because the show overdramatizes everything, many viewers find the show to be narrow-minded.

Girls is supposed to make its viewers feel enraged or uncomfortable. It opens dialogue about race, feminism, and overall ignorance. The main characters are infuriating because there are people in this country who act and think like them. Hannah is a self-involved, Rosie the Riveter wannabe who walks through her life as if the world revolves around her. Her on-and-off-again love interest, Adam Sackler, is described by Dunham as a rhinoceros that runs full force at something repeatedly until he is tired and moves onto something else. Unlike some television romances, theirs is not a relationship that most long for. It is an example of the kind of relationships that exist today among young adults. Girls does something that other shows do not, which is show the raw, honest truth of life in your twenties. Hannah’s best friends are equally as naïve and the men they surround themselves with are no better.

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Dunham’s portrayal is an exaggerated version of everyday life for many people, but that does not mean it is any less real. Just because Girls depicts a group of all-white friends in New York doesn’t mean that the show is culturally insensitive or that it is inaccurate. For those characters in that time frame, it is their truth. That doesn’t make it any less infuriating, but again, that is what makes the show work. It portrays the prevalent privilege in America and how privileged people take their status for granted. The characters on the show seem to be in their own bubble with hardly any regard to what is happening around them. Unfortunately that directly correlates to how many people live their lives.

In a New York Times article by Wesley Morris, it goes through the latest season and comments on how brilliant the show actually is once you dig a little deeper. When the show started, it “was received as an anthem for entitled white women,” Morris said. “Detractors had a field day with Ms. Dunham…for privileging privilege.” However, as the seasons progressed and the characters developed, viewers were able to see past the superficial layer that hovers over the show.

In addition to the show’s commentary on privilege, it also addresses mental illness, wayward relationships, and social injustice. Drawn from Dunham’s personal experience with OCD (Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder), the main character, Hannah, struggles to maintain her writing career. By the end of the latest season, “Hannah’s narcissism seems terroristic. Her personality disorder has the power to disorder other people’s personalities”. Watching Hannah struggle throughout the majority of the show with her OCD was discomforting, but it was also seen as encouraging. For a long time, mental illness was something that wasn’t talked about openly. In recent years, many television shows and movies have opened dialogue about mental illnesses, and Girls is definitely part of that movement.

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Morris also notes that “the national indifference that’s accrued around a show whose fealty to discomfort, poor choices and social cannibalism, which felt new in 2012 [when the show started], are now just part of television’s oxygen.” Throughout the past five seasons, the show has not lost its sense of satire. In fact it can be argued that the pathos and satire are stronger than ever. “But it’s true: Funny narcissists are indeed easy to come by (even on HBO).” What sets the show apart is that even if it isn’t a refined spectacle, it “still has the confidence to jump along a tightrope of displeasure.”

Despite the show’s success, there are still plenty of people who find Girls to be crude and deemed unwatchable. In fact, Dunham has received a lot of backlash over the years for how she looks and how she portrays white women in America. The show is definitely not everyone’s cup of tea, but for someone to watch it and only be able to see the first layer of a highly intelligent, meaningful series, comes across as sheer ignorance. Girls is the summation of how ridiculously millennials are viewed by other generations, and the fact that people take it so literally is more comedic than the show itself. In closing, Girls is a show where people either love it or hate it. But despite the backlash, the show and its creator have managed to create something that has captured the essence of being a young adult in the “real world”.

http://hbowatch.com/how-to-watch-girls-online/

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Click here for the review of the movie, Paterson.