This Week in Rixflix #9: May 5-11, 2017

With all honesty, for me there was really only one reason for living during this week, and that was seeing the new Guardians of the Galaxy movie. Perhaps I actually had a great many reasons for continuing to breathe in this span, but the anticipation I had surrounding the second volume of Guardians adventures clearly overrode everything else in my brain.

If you are already suffering Cinematic Superhero Burnout, I totally understand. It certainly seems like there is a new super-powered flick on the horizon every single week, and for the next few months, because we are entering the official Summer Movie Season, we will meet that horizon over and over again. Cinematic Superhero Burnout is how we weed out the posers. The second one of you goes, "Why doesn't Hollywood give us real stories with real characters anymore?," that's when we roll our eyes collectively and hear nothing but the whining of an overly spoiled baby. We are a long suffering lot, having to put up with su…

A Cult of My Own: Maria Bamford

I know she is an acquired taste. I know some people don't like the weird noises she makes. I know some people don't like the zillion voices she uses. But Maria Bamford makes me laugh in ways that no other comedian does. Her comedy seems so deeply personal that if you were not exposed to her previously, you may well wonder where the artist meets her material. 
Bamford's complicated history with bipolar disorder, depression and OCD informs her act, which can go from refreshingly innocent to starkly confessional and back again in mere seconds. The bleakness and dysfunction that hangs heavily over some of her comedy might be a little much for some people, but I find her absolutely refreshing. The uneasiness (somehow both hand-crafted and sincere at the same time), her frequent use of non-sequiturs, and the "just where is she going?" mood to some of her bits makes watching her anytime a delight. 

It's not in the Andy Kaufman way, however, where you would wonder just…

This Week in Rixflix #8: ALL-DEMME EDITION – April 29 to May 4, 2017

Director Jonathan Demme's death from esophageal cancer and heart disease at age 73 on Wednesday, April 26 hit Hollywood hard. There are relatively few major players in the industry today who hadn't crossed his path in some way, and the general consensus seems to have been that Demme was a truly nice guy who stuck by his friends, casting or working with them repeatedly over the course of his four-plus decade career. From the interviews I have seen or read with his collaborators and friends from across the span of his career, it is clear their grief is very real, and that his loss went beyond the usual lip service that many in the industry throw out automatically when asked for a sound bite.

I am not in the movie industry. I am a putz with a flailing film blog (or five) but I am also a putz who is simply too doggedly obsessed with film to really have a thought towards doing anything else with his time. I average 2-3 films a day throughout every year, and they take up the majority…

Face Analysis Face-Off, Part the Second...

Chilean werewolves... Argentinian space aliens... and a Swedish Dracula.

In our last episode, I (in partnership with my pals Aaron and Amber) discovered how to meticulously drain the validity out of an online personality test by bombarding it for days with images of various movie monster faces. The results were mostly hilarious, but they really got me to thinking about exactly how this particular game – titled "Which Nationality Do You Resemble Most?" – was designed in order to determine its various outcomes.

Did the test, as hinted at in both its cover and results images, use three pinpointed target areas on a candidate's Facebook profile picture to capture the necessary information? Or was the whole thing really just a hit or miss affair, especially when none of the results made a lick of sense, except in what I would offer up as circumstances of pure coincidence. An example of this would be when Aaron's picture of Godzilla came out as Japanese, which m…