My Top 10 (and Bottom 3) at the Movies in 2014

2014 has come and gone, and while there were some definite highlights to the year of movies, overall I’d say it was a bit disappointing compared to years past.  There were some movies that I really loved, but I wasn’t nearly as enthusiastic in 2014 as I usually am for the world of cinema.  However, things are looking up for 2015, with a lot to be excited about, plus there are still a few movies I need to catch up on from 2014 that I either missed or haven’t gotten around to (Big Eyes, Selma, The Imitation Game, etc.).  But now that 2015 is underway it’s time to take a look back at the highs and lows of 2014 at the movies.  Instead of a traditional top 10 list of movies, I like to list out my favorite cinema-related things from the year.  Some of them are movies, but others might be scenes, characters, moments, or even just announcements.  So without further ado, here are my top 10 and bottom 3 of 2014 at the movies.

Continue reading

Recap: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – “The Only Light in the Darkness”

Happy Earth Day, readers!  SHIELD is back with another dynamite episode!  Last week we watched as Ward and Garrett emptied the Fridge, while Coulson and company chased some mysterious coordinates to Fury’s secret bunker, Providence.  Tonight’s episode introduced us to a couple new characters, all while taking another big step along the “who can we trust?” boardgame.  Things are really starting to build towards the season finale in a few weeks, so let’s jump right into “The Only Light in the Darkness,” written by Monica Owusu-Breen and directed by Vincent Misiano.

Continue reading

Recap: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – “Providence”


After last week’s game-changing episode of Agents of SHIELD, we were left with just as many questions as were our heroes.  This week both we viewers and the characters we watch got some answers, along with some clues about where the show goes from here.  There’s no way that this episode could live up to the huge moments of last week, and the show was wise not to try.  In many ways, it felt like the first episode of a mini series, heading into the finale of season one, setting up both the type of conflicts our heroes will face as well as the internal strife they must confront to find their place in a changed world.  So without further ado, let’s dive into tonight’s episode, “Providence,” written by Brent Fletcher and directed by Milan Cheylov.

Continue reading

Recap: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – “Turn, Turn, Turn”

A lot has happened since we last left Coulson’s crew just one week ago.  In the real world, Captain America: The Winter Soldier was released this past weekend, setting box office records and generally getting rave reviews.  In the process it changed almost everything about the Marvel Cinematic Universe and by extension our beloved Agents of SHIELD.  (Needless to say, there will be spoilers ahead for Captain America: The Winter Soldier.)  Never before has a film had this level of impact on a TV show, and tonight’s episode resolved several mysteries, altered the lives of our heroes for good, and set the show on its path going forward.  So without further ado, let’s jump into “Turn, Turn, Turn,” written by our married showrunners Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen and directed by Vincent Misiano.

Continue reading

Review: Captain America: The Winter Soldier

I have to say that I wasn’t particularly thrilled by Captain America: The First Avenger.  As the last film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to be released before The Avengers, it felt like just one more piece in the puzzle rather than a compelling story in its own right.  That’s not to say that I disliked the film, or that it was particularly bad (still a big step ahead of Iron Man 2), it just wasn’t as interesting to me as Thor or Iron Man.  It was another solid origin story, with a strong cast and a fun setting, but the end result of the film seemed to just serve as setup for The Avengers.  (In a recent rewatch of that film, I’ve realized that I might have judged it a little too harshly upon my first viewing.)  Three years and four movies later we now have Captain America: The Winter Soldier, which might be the most complex and interesting film Marvel has made to date, not to mention one of the most entertaining, and it’s a game-changer for the universe its predecessor helped to create. Continue reading