GOTHAM

Poffy The Cucumber

The Batmanless Years. GOTHAM: It’s the city of the Batman. Before the Batman. And that’s the Damoclean ambiguity hanging over the bat-eared head of this television series. We all “know” this city of sin; we all “know” who turns up to clean everyone’s clock; we all “know” this spunk-filled ‘burg is holding its breath for a dark savior – but … Read More

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HOUDINI 2014

Poffy The Cucumber

The trick is not to fall asleep… Uh-oh, narration. Uh-oh, magic. Uh-oh…. HOUDINI. Adrien Brody stars (narrating interminably) as Harry Houdini, the greatest magician in history. But from this biopic, you’d never guess it. Upfront, Houdini is a god among men; an icon, innovator, pioneer, legend. And Adrien Brody, a fine actor, does his best with what he’s given to … Read More

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SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE

Poffy The Cucumber

Just when you thought it was safe to get blown… Yeah, it sucks – but it was meant to suck. — Jon Stewart, THE DAILY SHOW. SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE is one of the stupidest movies you will ever see. Yet from a moviemaking, storytelling point of view, it is actually better than its original. My God! Does this … Read More

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4TH AND LOUD

Poffy The Cucumber

Football by old Ballers. Love KISS. Could care less about foopball. Hate reality TV. 4TH AND LOUD is a quirky combination of all three. If you like even two out of three, you’re in for a treat with this rollicking, bollicking reality series from AMC, that follows KISS founders Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley as they put together the first … Read More

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CHARIOTS OF THE GODS

Poffy The Cucumber

Of The Clods… Long before Giorgio’s ANCIENT ALIENS, just before Leonard Nimoy’s IN SEARCH OF…, there was Erich von Daniken‘s jam-packed movie from the compelling 1968 book of the same name, CHARIOTS OF THE GODS. The book Chariots of the Gods? makes the compelling argument that ancient cultures in Earth’s past were visited by astronauts, who were mistaken as gods … Read More

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DEEP PURPLE: CALIFORNIA JAM

Poffy The Cucumber

Slammin’ Jammin’. Immortal! They just don’t play ’em like this anymore. As the sun set over the Californian suburbs of Pomona, Chino and Rancho Cucamonga on April 6th, 1974, after an hour’s delay, the loudest band in the world, Deep Purple, would take the stage at Ontario Speedway for the California Jam Festival. DEEP PURPLE: CALIFORNIA JAM is a vintage … Read More

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THE GREAT HOUDINI

Poffy The Cucumber

The Great Snore-dini. The great magician, escapist and mysteriarch, Harry Houdini (1874-1926), lived such a storied life that it is impossible to capture any semblance of it in the fleeting medium of the feature film. The best we can hope for is Tony Curtis flashing a winning smile or for Johnny Depp to flash a winning bangle, and to then … Read More

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BIGFOOT 2012

Poffy The Cucumber

Big Foot In Mouth. Greg Brady and Danny Partridge face off in a battle over BIGFOOT! The horror, the unmitigated horror – of watching Danny Bonaduce (aka Danny Partridge) trying to find a facial expression besides Douche No. 3. He’s Harley Anderson, a radio talk-show host who clears 50 acres of forest to hold a rock festival. Barry Williams (aka … Read More

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DENNIS MILLER: AMERICA 180°

Poffy The Cucumber

The Comedian Formerly Known As Dennis Miller. Dennis Miller is smart. I used to record THE DENNIS MILLER SHOW on VHS (that’s an olden-days DVR, chillun) and marvel at the way his mind spiraled headlong into esoteric references to rail against ignorance. In his 2014 standup special, AMERICA 180 DEGRESS (a one hour routine, filmed in Irvine), Miller is now … Read More

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WHY WE DID IT

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Illicit President, Illicit War. The short answer: Oil. The long answer: Oil, money, prostitutes. First of all: Who’s “we,” sucka? WHY WE DID IT, an MSBNC documentary, narrated by master journalist Rachel Maddow, details the deep background on why president George W. Bush and his slavemaster VP Dick Cheney took the United States to war in Iraq in 2003 under … Read More

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MOTHMAN

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Like a Moth to a Lame… In MOTHMAN, the eponymous man-moth returns to the small town of Point Pleasant to avenge a murder that has gone unpunished. And all cheap special effects break loose. A group of Point Pleasant teens accidentally kill one of their own on a camping trip. Instead of alerting the authorities to what was a prank … Read More

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COSMOS: A SPACETIME ODYSSEY

Poffy The Cucumber

Starstuff Redux. COSMOS: A SPACETIME ODYSSEY is the 2014 “reboot” to Carl Sagan’s 1980 monument, COSMOS. Producers include Sagan’s widow, Ann Druyan, and FAMILY GUY Seth McFarlane; narrated by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. 1. Standing Up In The Cosmos 2. Some Of The Things That Molecules Do 3. When Knowledge Conquered Fear 4. A Sky Full Of Ghosts 5. Hiding … Read More

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COSMOS 2014: EPISODE 2

Poffy The Cucumber

COSMOS continues treading H2O. COSMOS: A SPACE-TIME ODYSSEY is an ambitious venture, treading in the footsteps of gods, attempting to explain Life, the Universe and Everything, while retaining a connectivity between the farthest galaxy, the smallest microbe, and you and I. The opening montage says it all, with its morphing images of a chasm into an eye, a spiral galaxy … Read More

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COSMOS 2014: EPISODE 1

Poffy The Cucumber

COSMOS Lite for the generation of attention-deficit gamesters. They call COSMOS: A SPACE-TIME ODYSSEY a reboot (which is a fad term for movie properties rehashed due to lack of original scripts, brand recognition and merchandising venality). So this update of ever-changing scientific information is most decidedly not a reboot, but a new introduction to the same old information about Life, … Read More

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REVIEW

Poffy The Cucumber

REVIEW in need of review (of its soon-to-be lost financing, soon-to-be fired employees and cancellation policies). I wonder if Andrew Daly realizes he is as funny as a dick rash. Thankfully, his new TV series, REVIEW, is as painfully devoid of humor as he is, and will be gone long before my dick rash. Daly plays a “life reviewer” – … Read More

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CHRIS ROCK: BIGGER AND BLACKER

Poffy The Cucumber

The Biggest and Blackest! The shot across the bow was BRING THE PAIN (HBO, 1996). A rising comedian then, now Chris Rock has honed his standup act to a knife-keen incisiveness in his third HBO Special, BIGGER AND BLACKER. On the famed Apollo stage in Harlem, New York, attired in shiny black leather, Rock paces like a jungle cat, spitting … Read More

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DUEL

Poffy The Cucumber

The Original Road Warrior. One car. One truck. One highway. One big problem! DUEL is the zenith of simplicity, effectiveness, suspense: a trucker, on a whim, goes after a lone car in this chase movie of the decade, if not the millennium. We’ve reached an era in moviemaking history where car chases have become passe; the drum solos of movies. … Read More

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FEYNMAN: THE CHALLENGER

Poffy The Cucumber

A Smart Guy for Dumb People. A scientist at the opening of FEYNMAN: THE CHALLENGER describes Richard P. Feynman: “He was physics with a human face”; able to transform the esoteric worlds of theoretical physics into lay speak. In other words, A Smart Guy for Dumb People. He was a roarer, a rogerer, a gorger and a puker. And a … Read More

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THE CHALLENGER DISASTER

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Hubris Greed Politics vs. Genius. For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled. — Richard Feynman, “Report to Congress on Challenger Investigation 1986.” Indepth chronicle of Dr. Richard Feynman’s investigation into the Space Shuttle Challenger’s 1986 explosion. When I first heard about the TV movie, THE CHALLENGER DISASTER, I shrugged it off, … Read More

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BILL COSBY: FAR FROM FINISHED

Poffy The Cucumber

Far From Funny. What most vexes me about Bill Cosby is not his refusal to use profanity – but his holier-than-thou attitude towards people who do. And that’s everyone else. It has become such an obsession with him that he opens his latest comedy special, FAR FROM FINISHED, whining about the fact that he doesn’t swear and other comedians do. … Read More

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