We Hate Books: Matt Reviews “Dallas Buyers Club”

Written by Adam Schenkel. Posted in Movie Reviews, We Hate Books

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From left to right: Jared Leto as Rayon and Matthew McConaughey as Ron Woodruff

Prior to his diagnosis, Ron Woodruff (played excellently by Matthew McConaughey) believes that HIV, the virus that can lead to AIDS, only affects homosexual men. Ron Woodruff is a junkie who among other things has unprotected sex with a large number of women. He initially doesn’t understand how he has acquired HIV, but slowly accepts and understands his fate after being given only thirty days to live upon initial diagnosis, but he rejects the notion that he will die in thirty days; having a rodeo background he absolutely refuses to go down under the time given. He was given thirty days in 1985. He lived until the year 1992.

Just around the time Woodruff was diagnosed, a new drug called AZT was the first pharmaceutical approved by the FDA to help treat patients stricken with HIV/AIDS. The drug was only approved for testing purposes, however, and only a small number of patients got a hold of it.

Matt’s Compressed, Cynical Analysis of the “Hunger Games: Catching Fire”

Written by Adam Schenkel. Posted in Movie Reviews, We Hate Books

Jennifer Lawrence getting rid of Meryl Streep

Jennifer Lawrence getting rid of three-time Hunger Games winner, Meryl Streep

It’s rather interesting, as there really isn’t much for me to say about “Catching Fire”. It was a good film, it was extremely enjoyable, and had fun and more mature performances from its leads, but it just ended up feeling artificial to me. The post-apocalyptic nation of Panem is nightmarish, and the ideas behind the “Hunger Games” are wonderfully inventive, but to me, any teen-centered film series based on books after the “Harry Potter” films have a huge weight on their shoulders. Films like the “Hunger Games” are challenged to remain loyal to the books they were based on, while also making the films fun to watch over and over again. J.K. Rowling’s series was able to do this; I don’t feel the same way about Suzanne Collins’. With each successive “Harry Potter” film, I was able to re-watch each picture multiple times, discovering something new on every occasion. I have now seen the first “Hunger Games” three times, and it offers nothing more to me. It’s a shame that I have to compare these two film series and I can’t just let each stand alone, but that’s the way it is in the world of movies. Next week catch my review of “Dallas Buyers Club” right here at wcyt.org. Until next time, I’m Matt Hamilton and I have a severe aversion to books.

We Hate Books: Matt Reviews “12 Years a Slave”

Written by Adam Schenkel. Posted in Entertainment Interruption overview, Movie Reviews, We Hate Books

12 years

Michael Fassbender (Left) Threatens Chiwetel Ejiofor (Right) in “12 Years a Slave”

An estimated 10-12 million slaves were brought to the United States in the course of the slave trade; thousands more died during the course of slavery in the U.S. Our protagonist, Solomon Northup, was born a free man in early 19th century New York; he married and had children of his own. Solomon’s parents died free. Solomon remained a free man until the year 1841 when he was tricked into a job by two men; as Solomon travelled with the men they arrived in Washington and ate and stayed at the Gadsby Hotel; Solomon fell ill and the men offered him medicine. This would be the last thing Solomon would recollect as a free man before being tricked and sold into slavery. “12 Years a Slave” is a touching story based on real events as accounted by Northup. There has really never been a movie like this, and much like Alfonso Cuaron’s “Gravity”, it’s an enormously important film.

Independent wunderkind Steve McQueen directs a film unlike any period drama the world has ever seen. Rather than following a typical Spielberg-esque narrative that’s common for this genre, McQueen’s film goes where it wants, not being afraid to allow long, roaming takes into the movie. The film works at times like a documentary in that respect, letting the camera remain on what is happening rather than using unnecessary cutting and sentimental shots that are often seen in films such as this. Cinematographer Sean Bobbitt was also a former CBS war cameraman, explaining much of the fluid and intuitive nature of the camera movements.

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