If you were an alien longing to look up some old friends, you’d probably use the Men in Black franchise like a high school yearbook. Certainly there’s no end to the menagerie of extra-terrestrial mutations, but after MIB and MIB2, they’re feeling their age–like your friends (but not yourself, of course) at high school reunions.
Shot in pieces as fleeting as a pre-teen’s attention span, I Wish reveals a culture deeply fissured by modernity through the eyes and actions of a set of children in two schools several hundred miles apart, linked only by a pair of brothers separated by their parents’ divorce. Though it starts from the point of view of its two boy leads, Koichi and Ryu, the film’s humanity and psychological depth of field is deep and wide.
The train grand vitesse is packed, everybody snug in a reserved seat except for this disruptive young mother standing in the aisle, babe in arms, asking if someone will switch so that she and her family can sit together. No one will, and her stubbly-faced husband says, “It’s only three hours.” She kisses him.
Mixing splatter and hilarity, the surprising Cabin in the Woods makes a good case for post-modern horror. Consider first, if you will, the ingenious poster for the long-delayed project: There’s a basemented cabin (not in the woods) suspended in blank white space, whose naked architectonics reveal that the structure can be manipulated like Rubik’s cube, twisted this way and that.
It’s too bad that the word “icon” has become the most overused term in what passes for modern celebrity journalism. But if the word icon doesn’t apply to Bob Marley, who became a kind of quasi-religious figure to millions, a sign of hope, and, as it turns out, financially generous, to whom can it possibly apply?
This writer saw The Three Stooges, the longest-running comedy team in American movies, in person only once–as a late-career stage act at a state fair. And after a more than 30-year career, the three–minus the marvelous Curly Howard (substituted by the mediocre Curly Joe DeRita)–had honed down their best movie sketches, brought along their all-important soundman (Bonk!
Oka! tells tales within tales of primitive, transitional and perhaps sustainable Africa. For her third film, part-time Hawaii writer-director Lavinia Currier (Passion in the Desert, full disclosure: this writer worked as a consultant on this film) has chosen an intricate challenge: a narrative without melodrama, telling several stories: Equatorial Banzele forest pygmies enduring enmity from neighboring Bantus; incursion by timber companies and illegal hunters (some from China) chasing after the magnificent elephants within the forest; a quest by a terminally ill American ethnomusicologist trying, before shades fall, to complete his musical-instrument collection by finding the befabled Molimo, an extremely rare instrument said to be able to call elephants.
Karen, a sophisticated 40-something poetry and dance teacher almost exclusively referred to as “Ma’am,” gazes around the classroom before zooming in on her prey. “When you stare at a woman, do you undress her with your eyes or cover her up?” she asks Marlon (Paolo Avelino), a struggling student utterly enamored by the enigmatic poetess, played by Jean Garcia in this film, the lineup in this weekʻs Third Annual Filipino Film Festival.
Franchise comedy movies–meaning a stable of at least three or four films with related casts and plots–are rare, the most lucrative of the lot belonging to the American Pie collective, six and counting (two of these on direct-to-DVD). The newest, if not the freshest, is the current American Reunion, replete with scatology, cunnilingus, fellatio, infidelity, sex-with-food, major drunkenness and old jokes.
The comedies of director Lasse Hallström (Chocolat, My Life as a Dog come to mind) are like no one else’s: deft, “humanistic,” character-driven and funnier as they go along. They often begin gently, with here and there a few chuckles, and then rope audiences in, ending up far more eccentric than they first appear.
Yes, it’s all true, Disney spent $250 million on the budget for John Carter, which only reinforces what Dolly Parton said about her enhancements: “It takes a lot of money to look this cheap.” Well, not cheap exactly in the case of Carter–just maybe uninspired. Your humble reviewer could spend the rest of this page listing the titles of the movies from which Carter borrowed.
For as long as we can remember, Chinatown has been notorious for drugs, homelessness and filthy streets. Some claim nothing has changed–and that it never will.
Bicyclists have long been overlooked by four-wheel riders on Honolulu’s congested streets. In the gleaming, armored pecking order of the road, cyclists are too often dismissed as lane hogs, hand-signaling nuisances and unfortunates who can’t afford cars.
The fate of some 1,525 acres of land at Hoopili in ‘Ewa may have been decided last Wednesday in Hawaii’s First Circuit Court. The decision might have gone differently, but the appellant attorneys’ strategy seemed to collapse as Judge Rhonda Nishimura picked it apart based on technical errors.
Last Thursday, May 9, the Caldwell administration revealed its action plan for solving Honolulu’s homeless problem. But at the City Council’s budget meeting the same day, Budget chair Ann Kobayashi wanted to know where the money for “Housing First” (see Cover Story, pg.
The Mayor Wright Housing project has been slated for major redevelopment by the Hawaii State Housing Authority (HSHA); requests for qualifications will be going out to developers in three to six months. Nonprofit group Faith Action for Community Equity (FACE) wants to make sure the project’s tenants have a say in the redevelopment process, which could include major renovations or a total rebuild.
The Honolulu City Council held a special Committee on Transportation meeting on Tuesday, May 7, to go over its Complete Streets initiative with input from the department directors of Design and Construction (DDC), Planning and Permitting (DPP) and Transportation Services (DTS). At prior meetings, including the Moiliili workshop, community members pressed the idea of combining Complete Streets with Caldwell’s repaving projects, which Dan Burden of the Walkable and Livable Communities Institute and some councilmembers have said makes sense.
Not much to agree with my friend Doc Berry (“Limits of Growth,” April 17). None of the scenarios he posits will ever materialize.
In your Diary of May 8 (“End of the 27th)” you reported on SB 1214, passed by the Legislature. In their nimble way, the Legislature tacked the wheel boot prohibition on a bill that was intended to abolish the Commission on Transportation.
On Friday, May 3, at 3:45 p.m., I was driving town bound through the Wilson tunnel on the Likelike. I was parallel to another car, and there were several other cars following closely behind me.
Congratulations Honolulu Weekly on the recent Pai award for investigative reporting (“Boss GMO,” Jan. 4, 2012).
When the biofuel guys say that costs are “confidential” (“Big-foot Biofuel,” May 8), I reply that since I am the one who is going to end up paying the cost, I have a right to know. Frankly, when everybody tries to hide the costs, I smell rat …
The Foster Botanical Garden never ceases to inspire for an urban setting it is like a step back in time (“See the Flora,” May 8). If Koko Crater Botanical Garden contains the world’s largest plumeria collection as suggested, it may be thanks in part to the Prussian born Dr.