Movie Review – Controversial ‘Ghost in the Shell’ is the First Good Anime Adaptation

Anime to live action adaptations have a troubled history. Unless I’m forgetting something, I don’t believe there has ever been a successful or well-done adaptation of an anime movie or television show. Of the most recent ventures, Dragonball: Evolution and Speed Racer were both critical and box office failures, and that’s putting it nicely.

Ghost in the Shell, then, had quite the mountain to climb to overcome past grievances and honor both the original anime movie while introducing the story to non-anime audiences. While it’s not perfect by any means, struggling to go as deep as the original, it still keeps the soul of the movie rather than settling for a shell, but also knows when to be its own thing. The end result is a satisfying science fiction that many people will enjoy.

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Filmed in Minnesota, ‘Wilson’ Premieres to Excited, Packed Theater


The line to see the Minnesota-based film Wilson grew quickly at the Showplace Icon Theater at the West End in St. Louis Park, hosted by the Twin Cities Film Festival. The excitement was palpable. It’s been some time since a major studio out of Hollywood set up shop to film an entire movie in the Twin Cities. Local actors and crew were excited to see their work on the big screen.

According to director Craig Johnson, the film was originally planned to be shot in Oakland, but that location was “cost prohibitive.” However, With the help of the “Snowbate” by the Minnesota Film Commission, a reimbursement program to attract major films, Johnson and Fox Searchlight decided to bring the production to the Twin Cities. According to Lucinda Winter, Executive Director of the MN Film & TV Board, they filmed over 50 Minnesota locations in under 30 days, hiring local actors and production crews, totaling 165 people working on the production. Overall, Fox Searchlight spent 4 Million dollars in Minnesota, benefiting the local economy.[Continue Reading]

Movie Review – ‘Kong: Skull Island’ Isn’t Monkeying Around

After the roaring success of Godzilla, the resurgence of the monster movie was officially in full swing, giving studios the green light to release several more remakes and reboots of classic monster films. And while we wait for them to unearth Steve McQueen’s The Blob (crosses fingers), we’ll have to settle for more popular franchises like King Kong.

Kong: Skull Island does everything it needs to be a crowd pleaser minus one pretty important piece. It’s heavy on the action and comedy, providing a fun escape to the theater, but the overflowing humor and lack of solid, likable three-dimensional characters weaken the stakes. It has great potential, but it doesn’t seem to care to go any further.

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‘Dunkirk’ PG-13 Rating is Nolan’s Boldest Move Yet

Christopher Nolan has never shied away from bold decisions, creating unique cinematic effects like Inception‘s mind-bending hallway scene, casting oddball actors like Heath Ledger as The Joker, and telling stories in mostly non-linear and splintered fashions. In the past, his creative instincts have led him to great success both critically and financially. Now, he’s making another bold move, and no it’s not casting One Direction heartthrob Harry Styles (though, that is head scratching), it’s creating a PG-13 war movie.[Continue Reading]

Gopher Men Ready to Dance After Surprising Rebound Season

Xeroxed copies of brackets are pinned to cubicle walls across America in anticipation of the start of March’s annual “Madness.” Amateur office bookies are collecting five and ten dollar bills from last minute entrants, each of whom believes they can employ their personal method of bracketology to foresee the hidden upsets and ultimately “win the pool.”

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“Flowetry in Motion” — 2017 All Hockey Hair Team Announced

The king of flow – Jaomir Jagr.

In its seventh year of existence, the much-anticipated annual YouTube video that celebrates the unique hairstyles of Minnesota’s best prep hockey players has turned… poetic.

After a quick jab at the sitting POTUS’s notorious hairstyle, our droll narrator (John King) channels the likes of Whitman, Wilde, Poe and Dylan to grace his viewers with a poem honoring the hair highlights of this past weekend’s tourney, before taking us through his picks for this year’s AHH team.

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Russell Westbrook Eyes 55-Year Old Triple-Double Record

Last year, Golden State Warrior superstar Steph Curry launched an individual offensive display of historical significance, making 402 3-point field goals during the regular season while shooting a highly accurate 45.4% from behind the arc. This total bested the previous record (set by Curry the year before) by a remarkable 116 and really is a ridiculous outlier stat no matter how you look at it.

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A Case Against Disney Cartoon Remakes

Originally, I was going to write up a review about the upcoming Beauty and the Beast live-action remake, but the more I considered it, the more I realized it was better to take a different direction.

The Beauty and the Beast remake is essentially a frame-for-frame copy of the cartoon. That isn’t to say that changes weren’t made, but overall, the cartoon to live-action transfer is fully complete to ignite millennial nostalgia. It’s a gorgeous CGI-display of Emma Watson’s Beauty prancing in the open fields and Dan Steven’s Beast growling and mostly being angry until he’s not supposed to be anymore. Musical lovers will gush at all the wonderfully choreographed singing and dancing scenes and Disney fanatics will be perfectly happy accepting this newly repackaged gift. In other words, there’s nothing I’m going to tell you that will change your mind about seeing Beauty and the Beast, with one exception.

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‘Imagination Theater’ Leaves Airwaves, But Not Fans’ Hearts

You are in your bedroom. Or, perhaps you’re driving down some country road. Or, maybe you’re sitting around the bonfire with your family. In any of these scenarios, you’re tuned into a radio station, captivated by the drama that has your attention.

The program is Imagination Theater, a program reminisce of the old time radio dramas, featuring mystery and suspense. Its creator, Seattle area radio veteran Jim French, along with other writers, write the scripts for the shows. A typical program is an hour long and features two different radio dramas. Sometimes, a single drama will take up the entire program.

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Movie Review – ‘Table 19’ is a Great Idea, But Never Lands

Unless you’re one of the lucky few who gets to parade around in the bride and groom inner circle, weddings are atrocious affairs, filled with sitting, waiting and talking with strangers you’d more than likely avoid in everyday life. And, much like the seven circles of hell, the further you get away from the wedding party, the more the torment increases until you’re just not sure why you showed up in the first place.

This is the genius behind the idea of Table 19, a quirky and awkward indie-wannabe comedy starring Anna Kendrick. Unfortunately, any initial greatness the idea possessed dies upon implementation and is tossed in its own leper colony along the way.

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