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“Tree of Life” and Indian Delite at Market East by Dr. Mary Burgers
Jun 14th, 2011 by maryburgers

Tree of Life

dir. Terrence Malick

 

The Tree of Life is a CGI comedy romp starring Sean Penn as Loci the Talking Raptor and Brad Pitt as a strict navy officer. They form an unlikely bond after another raptor (played by you) intervenes on their fight over the significance or insignificance of all events in life, clinic which is displayed through a contrast between present day events and the creation of all life and time. You resolve it with laughter, try song, salve and an hour long perfume commercial, directed by Calvin Klein, complete with the principal actors whispering abstract narratives over flashes of sun-dappled imagery.

 

You lucky raptor you, you are there to bear witness to every event, every event that has ever happened in all of time:  you watch the original mitochondrion merging with a cell, you are there running with your brothers through cornfields in Texas, you witness a plesiosaur bleeding into prehistoric waters. Each of these events is handled with equal weight by Malick’s camera. The merging of hands at a funeral is as big and vivid as a piece of earth breaking off and creating a magma-fall.

 

You are always looking up with Malick, up at stained glass spiral ceilings in a church, up at the tops of trees blooming in spring, up at your red-headed strong-willed mother who never thought she would have a life revolving around four boys. She whispers delicate entreaties to God, and soon her oldest son does the same. It seems stilted and precocious when he asks why God let a young boy die, but it becomes more meaningful as you see him ask the same questions of his father.

 

Though the mother opens the movie by saying the weather will always find a reason to be unhappy, the entire movie is vibrant, all sticky southern summer nights, no grayness or rain, just fields and rivers and rope-swings.

 

Enough about you, Mr. CGI Raptor. Back to me.

 

I considered it a great compliment to the movie that, after I exited the theater disoriented and crying, an older woman came up to me and asked about the single most important plot detail. She had missed the first ten minutes of the movie, and still thought it was spectacular.

 

I would really like to see it again, but next time allow myself to fall asleep more often. It is not a boring movie. Every shot of every scene is careful and deliberate and beautiful. But it feels like fragments of memories you might see before you fall asleep, and to go in and out of those dreamlike states seems to be as valid and true a way of watching it as enduring it straight through.

 

6 out of 6 burgers

 

I stumbled out of the movie theater wishing I could die right then and there but somehow managed to get myself on the EL and back to Market East Station. And I was hungry.

 

INDIAN DELITE: MARKET EAST STATION

non-vegetarian curry platter

like $10 with a mango lassi

 

For some reason I was like “No, it is not a bad idea at all to get food court Indian food!” I went up and asked for the non-vegetarian curry with a side of mint sauce. I did not ask for a platter. I got a platter anyway! And no mint sauce. Then I asked for mango juice and the lady gave me a $4 mango lassi instead.

 

I couldn’t be sure, but I think the mango lassi had gone off. It tasted much more sour than I think should have been right. I kept sipping at it to make sure, and I realized if I continued doing that I was putting myself at risk for food poisoning. “But it was $4! And I didn’t ask for it!” I guess I finally decided having my stomach pumped would be more expensive than a $4 lassi and I threw it out.

 

The platter came with vegetarian curry (which I guess sounds exactly the same as “non-vegetarian curry) and some cheese in some kind of cream sauce, some rice, and a samosa. The curry was fairly nondescript with some cauliflowers and carrots and peas. I guess most of her customers are not Indian so it was not spicy at all. The cheese stuff was also ok. The samosa was kind of dry and gross. Mostly I just kept crying about how all events in life are the same level of significant and I wondered if someone would make a 2 hour perfume ad about my life if I died of food poisoning right then. I should have gone to get bahn mi!

 

2 out of 6 burgers

 

“Black Swan”, reviewed by the Revered Phil Burgers
Feb 25th, 2011 by maryburgers

cialis serif;”>Black Swan

Director/stars/etc @ www.imdb.com

This movie actually uses the psychology to lead the viewer on a psycho-sexual journey through the mind of a ballerina, but in the end we learn that that ballerina’s mind is actually our own.

Before I go on, please be aware that although this is a movie review that I guess is supposed to make you decide if you want to see the movie, reading this will pretty much spoil the whole thing for you except some parts that I probably forgot happened or didn’t feel like writing about.

Anyway, Black Swan has clearly been inspired by some of the greatest psychological thrillers of all time such as probably only the Japanese anime, Perfect Blue. For those unfamiliar with the classic, Perfect Blue is the story of a young up-and-coming actress named Mima whose life spirals out of control as she is manipulated by her stalker, who actually believes herself to be the true or maybe just another, second Mima. There are actually two Mimas who believe they are one another when, in fact, they are aware that they are not actually each other because they occupy separate physical space, which is probably obvious even to people who are mentally unstable? And the stalker Mima maintained a blog that the real Mima thought was her own blog even though I’m not sure if the real Mima even knew how to start a blog, which I think used to be more complicated back then and maybe would require some basic knowledge of HTML or something? Though I guess she thought she actually did possess such skills or maybe she actually did? Otherwise I’m not sure why she would think it was her blog? It was a really good movie, and, like Black Swan, will surely captivate the mind of anyone who is inspired by movies that are cerebral and long with many thrills along the way.

Much like other movies of such high caliber, Black Swan begins by masterfully drawing the audience in with a series of events, which occur in roughly chronological succession. The main character, Nina (Natalie Portman) is a ballet dancer who wants to be famous and successful to whatever extent is possible for a ballerina in America, and she’s willing to do whatever it takes. Before long we realize that being a ballerina is no walk in the park, and Nina must spend grueling hours prepping her ballet slippers with her controlling, weird mother.

Upon hearing that the theater needs a lead for its newest production, Nina knows that this is her chance to finally prove her talent. However, a French guy doesn’t believe she is ready to take on the complex role, comprised of both the white and the black swans, which are two types of swan on completely opposite sides of the color spectrum. One day Nina bites the French guy when he tries to kiss her and so he decides to give her the role because he believes that biting someone is something a black swan might do.

At some point after getting the part, Nina is confronted by Winona Ryder, who seems to be making a comeback after not having been in any movies seen by me sinceMermaids with Cher or perhaps Alien Resurrection (logically it would have to be the more recent of the two). Honestly, I don’t remember Mermaids at all, but I’ve definitely seen it and I know Winona Ryder was in it even though I can’t really picture her character. Conflict ensues and a bitter Winona Ryder makes a scene and storms off, at which point she is basically not relevant to the plot anymore. Although there is a scene with her later that was messed up and used psychology to make the movie better and more psychological.

Indeed we soon discover that Nina’s mind, much like a mixed up Rubik’s Cube, is chaotic and crazy, and only through the perfect ballet performance can she twist it back so that each side only has squares that are the same color. But much like the algorithm or whatever that solves the Rubik’s Cube, it is difficult to do the part of the Black Swan. Even after trying several times, Nina could not do the Black Swan dance well enough.

Sensing Nina’s distress from the pressures of ballet, another ballerina, Lily (from That 70′s Show), takes Nina out for a night on the town. First they go to a bar and then Lily thinks it would be a good idea if they did some drugs. Nina declines because she is afraid that doing drugs might negatively influence her dancing the next day. After thinking about it, however, Nina realizes that she will actually have more fun if she does the drugs.

After doing the drugs, Nina has a lot of fun, and it becomes clear that her initial apprehensions were unfounded. Then Lily and Nina go home together and they make love. In the throes of pleasure, goose pimples appear on Nina’s skin in waves. They are not actually goose pimples, though, but featherless swan skin. This shows that Nina is becoming more and more like a swan because she has thought so much about swans while preparing for her role. Indeed, her mind is just swimming with swans.

The next day Nina was surprised to discover that Lily did not, in reality, go home with her the previous night, and it had all been a vivid and elaborate hallucination. Later (or whenever) there is some dialogue between some of the characters and the camera captures them at various angles and then Nina is convinced that Lily is after her part. Afraid that she would become the victim of fowl play, Nina begs the French guy to intervene and prevent Lily from stealing her role. He doesn’t do anything and then it is opening night.

Various things that have to do with the plot occur and there are several psychological thrills. Finally, the time for Nina to either sink or swim as the Black Swan has arrived. Nina dances with overwhelming passion and she is actually transformed into an anthropomorphic black swan (but not really).

All the people in the audience, who must be very interested in ballet and would only be happy to see the best ballet, clapped loudly and some even cheered and everyone seemed very impressed by Nina’s good job doing the Black Swan. All the other dancers surround Nina offstage to congratulate her, but then everyone sees that Nina is wounded and they know she might have to go to the hospital. Before or after this, Nina was like, “I was perfect,” obviously very satisfied that she danced so well at the end even though she fell once earlier. That is the end and we do not know if Nina continued to dance as passionately for all the countless times she would surely have to do this same performance in the future.

I give this movie stars for its high quality performances. Natalie Portman and the girl from That 70′s Show have several facial expressions which they use at all the contextually appropriate times. But actually they do not just both use the same expressions at the same time. Sometimes Natalie Portman might make a surprised face while the girl from That 70′s Show makes a serious face or whatever. That is pretty important in acting because maybe some actors or actresses who are less talented do it in a different, wrong way and the audience might think the movie is not real. Acting isn’t just about being good at making different faces, though. All the other things that are good acting are also done in Black Swan by Natalie Portman and the other girl. In a movie it is also important that everyone has the right clothes and makeup and even hairstyle, and maybe these important things are also considered acting. This is why I believe that many Oscars will be bestowed upon Black Swan, and if the Academy Awards Presentation for 2010 is something that has already happened, I am confident that many Oscars were, indeed, bestowed upon it.

I hope reading this review has given you some insight into Black Swan and how movies are made. I give this movie maximum burgers, but I honestly can’t imagine why you’d still go see it or download it or whatever if you actually read all of this.

Signing out,

D. Philip McToo-large-novelty-burger

Love and Other Drugs and a Review of Myself as An Audience Member by Dr. Mary T Burgers
Dec 9th, 2010 by maryburgers

Love and Other Drugs

starring Anne Hathaway’s boobs and Jake Gyllenhaal

directed by Edward Zwick

I’m pretty sure this movie was about a really hot but emotionally distant pair of tits that is afraid to commit because of their fear that no one will love them because of their terminal penchant for displaying themselves. Anne Hathaway’s mouth makes a cameo as the thing that screams “WHYYYYYYYYYYY” suddenly and overdramatically when she drunkedly drops a bottle of vodka. It’s supposed to be a moment that shows that the character the boobs are attached to is facing a terrifying loss of neurological control in her battle with early onset Parkinson’s, but people drinking almost an entire bottle of vodka are pretty likely to accidentally drop the bottle anyway, with or without Parkinson’s.

Jake Gyllenhaal is Jamie Randall, a happy-go-lucky playboy who loses his job selling high-tech stereo equipment and becomes a pharmaceutical rep. He is the black sheep of his family, even though his little brother happens to be a terrifying science experiment, the result of a DNA melding of Jonah Hill and Jack Black. He has a smart, uptight sister that he argues with at the dinner table and who is never seen again as she is just there to show the viewing audience that Jamie is so much different from everyone and lacks a moral compass, because only uptight bitches have those.

While Jamie desperately tries to shelf his samples in the office of an influential doctor, Hank Azaria as Dr. Why-the-Fuck-Are-You-In-This-I-Expected-Better-From-You,-Hank-Azaria, he ends up throwing out (why?) the samples in a dumpster every day, and as he does this we see a homeless man stealing them and becoming cleaner and eventually telling Jamie Randall that he has a job interview. We never see the homeless guy again, probably because Zoloft has made him into a human being. So thanks for throwing away the one potentially interesting (though immediately predictable) plot point this movie could have had, this movie.

Then Jamie meets Maggie Murdoch, the pair of boobs that are Anne Hathaway’s. She gets mad that he sees her boobs and she is frustrated and so world-weary because she has Parkinson’s and no one can help her and even though she somehow manages to pay for a loft in Chicago on the wages of a waitress working approximately one day a week, she is utterly cynical and unhappy. Also why the fuck would you be a waitress or barista if your hands were shaking all the time? Either way, her boss (one of two people of color in the film, neither of whom have any dialogue) is very forgiving because he lets her wallow at home for days on end, or make surprise trips to Canada, or bang Jamie Randall in a bathroom.

I shouldn’t explain how Maggie Murdoch and Jamie Randall got together because you already know, in your heart: she is mad that he did a thing, he wants to see the boobs more and is intrigued at her unavailability, she screams at him, he asks her out for coffee, banging ensues. And then they fall in love because they eat organic cereal together and the sex is no longer feral, because people in love only ~make love~. Then there are about a dozen montages of them playing in leaves or something. Then a conflict occurs, which is that Maggie doesn’t want to be Jamie’s girlfriend because then she’d lose the one facet of personality the movie attributes to her: her lack of availability. Then they break up and get back together.

The movie takes place in the 90s, to showcase the pharmaceutical boom that happened as a result of increased use of anti-depressants and the introduction of Viagra. The only way that you know it’s the 90s is that women are wearing florals and denim vests and people do the Macarena. I guess that’s the only way the 90s were different, though. It wasn’t a completely different time period in terms of the economy or the political climate or anything like that. NOPE NOT AT ALL.

Rating: 1 out of 6 burgers, for WHYYYYYYYYYYY, and for every time I was accurately able to predict a plot point before it happened

Because I was doing that. Out loud. Which leads me to my next review.

Myself as an Audience Member

starring me

I talked the whole time. The entire time. My friend and I went to the 10:15 PM showing on a Wednesday night. We sat in the front and the only other people there were sitting in the very back. And from the very first moment we did not shut our mouths.

Most of it was accurate predictions:

“SHE IS GONNA REBUFF HIM”

“SHE IS GONNA TAKE ISSUE WITH THE WORD GIRLFRIEND”

“THAT ASSHOLE IS GONNA BE HER EX-BOYFRIEND”

“HE WILL CHANGE HER WITH HIS ~LOVE~”

“THE HOMELESS GUY IS GONNA GET ALL CLEANED UP BECAUSE OF ANTI-DEPRESSANTS”

Some of them were not-so-accurate predictions:

“SHE IS GONNA DIE”

“SHE IS GONNA DIE IN THE STORE”

“SHE IS GONNA DIE ON THE BUS”

“HE IS GONNA GET A CALL AFTER HE BANGS THOSE GIRLS  AND FIND OUT SHE DIED”

“THE HOMELESS GUY IS REALLY A PRIEST AND WILL MARRY THEM AT THE END”

I was also leaning over and making cynical comments at the same time that Maggie Murdoch, in the film, was leaning over to Jamie Randall and making cynical comments. And I made fun of her for it. I also made fun of her vintage robe while wearing a vintage sweater and vintage boots. I rolled my eyes at her eye-rolling.

“Newsflash: no one says newsflash”, I newsflashed at her newsflashing.

About ten minutes before the movie ended, the group of kids in the back got up to leave, and each in turn gave me a death glare, ostensibly because I ruined the movie for them. I was able to ruin a movie that already had a cut&paste script from every other romantic comedy and in which NOTHING HAPPENS.

So for that I suppose as an audience member, I deserve 0 out of 6 burgers.

Last House on the um…not this side, but the other…like, if you’re facing this way, then I guess it’d be on this side, but it really depends on which way you’re going. Sorry, I’m terrible at directions. So where are you coming from again? by Prince TJ Burgers
May 13th, 2009 by maryburgers

A Review of Last House on the Left (2009)

By T J Burgers

As a fan of the original Last House, sick directed by Wes Craven, I felt that it was somehow my duty to seek out and watch this undoubtedly horrible remake. Wait, let me back up for a second. Maybe I shouldn’t have referred to myself as a “fan” of the original. I mean, that was a pretty fucked up movie guys. A “fan” implies a certain level of enjoyment that I’m not entirely comfortable with people knowing that I experienced while watching what amounted to constant emotional and physical brutality set to the tune of utterly inappropriate banjo ditties. So let’s try this again.

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Special Guest Review!- “The Wrestler” by Dave V Burgers
Apr 12th, 2009 by maryburgers

“The Wrestler”

dir. by Darren Aronofsky

review by Dave V Burgers

I’m not going to jerk myself off in verbosity. I’m not going to impress anyone with my writing ability. I’m not going to turn this into a study of false emotional nuance and romanticism by creating things that don’t actually exist in the movie like a lot of critics do. If that’s what you are looking for go listen to NPR with a red rose sticking out of your ass.

“This is a harrowing tale of…” – umm – this is a harrowing tale of shut the fuck up!

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I’ll Enchant Your Face by Dr. Mary T. Burgers (8/30/2008)
Mar 6th, 2009 by maryburgers

Enchanted
Disney Pictures
directed by some guy
starring Amy Adams and that guy from Can’t Buy Me Love

Really, store Disney? You want to replace your manufactured but still charming childlike innocence with heavy-handed “satire”?

“Enchanted” was an attempt by Disney to make fun of its earlier masterpieces, health such as “Snow White” and “Sleeping Beauty” (as well as more recent hits like “the Little Mermaid) by throwing a stereotypical fairytale princess in modern day New York City and playing off of her naivete and innocent ideas about love.  Of course the satire had to be as obvious as possible, seek while throwing a few winks to the parents, but obvious and funny don’t necessarily have to be mutually exclusive. Unfortunately for me, “Enchanted” presented me with many cases in which the two don’t meet.

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There Will Be DRAAAAINAGE. by Prince T. J. Burgers (8/30/2008)
Mar 6th, 2009 by maryburgers

There Will Be Blood
directed by Paul Thomas Anderson
starring Daniel Day Lewis and Paul Dano

Shortly after watching There Will Be Blood, cialis I saw an interview with the star, recipe Daniel Day-Lewis. Imagine my shock when Day-Lewis genially answered questions rather than crushing the interviewer’s windpipe. While this turn of events has lessened my opinion of the actor, check it hasn’t changed my feelings about his character, Daniel Plainview, who threatens, manipulates, and murders with such magnetic charm that I couldn’t help wishing that I would be next in line to be bitch-slapped and shoved in the mud.

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Disturbia: More Like Distoopia (Because It Is Stupid) by Prince T.J. Burgers (5/1/2007)
Mar 6th, 2009 by maryburgers

Fuck Disturbia
-Anonymous

The above is a scrap of paper I found on a corpse lying next to a dumpster. The body was too horribly disfigured to discern age, advice race, or even gender. To the average person, the letter would have had no particular meaning. But to someone who has witnessed the horrors of Disturbia, tossed restlessly, hopelessly in bed, plagued by the night terrors, and, with a trembling hand, pressed the cold barrel of a shaky gun to his temple, eyes welling with tears, determined to put an end to his suffering, the meaning of the letter was all too clear. I have postponed my suicide long enough to warn others, but I lack the strength to continue living beyond that. After this is written, I will execute myself, and join the others who had given in sooner–the lucky ones–in the afterlife. And yes, the letter was signed “anonymous” for whatever reason. Maybe that was the person’s name, geez.

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