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Chris Packham

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Category: Film24 Night&Day1 The Exhibitionist1

Year: 20133 201223

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Recent Articles

Film, "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone": Your Magic is Showing

"The Incredible Burt Wonderstone": Your Magic is Showing

The degree to which contemporary mainstream comedies adhere to a Joseph Campbell storytelling model is interesting and exasperating — yes, the Hero's Journey is a natural way to tell a story, but individual comedies these days are pounding out the…
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Film, "Stoker": Gothic Teen Meets Creepy Uncle

"Stoker": Gothic Teen Meets Creepy Uncle

In the 19th century, the Romantics changed Gothic fiction, making it palatable to mainstream novel readers by jettisoning the supernatural elements and digging in to the psychology of terror. Two hundred years later, modern embellishments include cell phones and incest…
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Film, "Oz the Great and Powerful": The Trickster Learns Real Magic

"Oz the Great and Powerful": The Trickster Learns Real Magic

At this point, MGM's 1939 The Wizard of Oz is so inextricably tangled up with L. Frank Baum's novels that any new adaptation of his work inevitably references the motifs, characterizations, and music of Victor Fleming's film. And so Sam…
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Film, "My Worst Nightmare": Love Has an Agenda

"My Worst Nightmare": Love Has an Agenda

The early, awesome stage of romantic relationships, characterized by firehose neurochemistry, socially off-putting behavior and a lot of chafing, eventually diminishes into bored, sexless collegiality, open bathroom doors, and socks in bed. Love has an agenda (babies) and once a…
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Film, "Parental Guidance": Modern Life Is Rubbish

"Parental Guidance": Modern Life Is Rubbish

In much the same way that pig-romancing hill folk felt slandered by William Denison "Bill" McKinney's performance in Deliverance, the elderly have cause to feel scandalized by their portrayal in Andy Fickman's Parental Guidance. The Billy Crystal/Bette Midler vehicle is…
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Film, "The Guilt Trip": Seth Rogen Takes his Centrum Silver

"The Guilt Trip": Seth Rogen Takes his Centrum Silver

Once comic actors reach a particular career stage, they often choose one of two paths: A) They stop being funny and start being all Hallmark heartwarming, i.e., by growing a beard and playing a psychiatrist; B) They accept unambitious, work-for-hire…
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Film, "North Sea Texas": Falling in Love with the Boy Next Door

"North Sea Texas": Falling in Love with the Boy Next Door

Recently, popular films about gay characters have started moving beyond the overarching plot about society's acceptance of sexual identity and the tricky navigability of a hetero-normative world to instead just tell stories about people who aren't straight. This is a…
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Film, "Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning": Suffer for the Fights

"Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning": Suffer for the Fights

Depending on whether you count direct-to-video releases, Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning is either the fourth or sixth film in the low-rent, Panda Express-level Universal Soldier franchise, the descendant of a ripoff of The Terminator. But less money equals less…
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Film, "The Big Picture": Thrilling Alienation and False Identification

"The Big Picture": Thrilling Alienation and False Identification

"You're as free as the wind," says Paul Exben (Romain Duris) to the son of a legal client to whom he has offered the choice of drug rehab or disinheritance from the family's fortune. Oh, irony. Paul is himself encumbered…
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Film, "Rise of the Guardians": Adventures with Santa and Co.

"Rise of the Guardians": Adventures with Santa and Co.

Unlike such vengeful, justice-dispensing figures as Jehovah and RoboCop, the traditional pantheon of made-up childhood gods are all carrot and no stick, dispensing toys, hiding hard-boiled eggs, and remunerating children for their deciduous teeth. It's fun to tell lies to…
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Film, "This Must Be the Place": Sean Penn Is Gothed Up and Great

"This Must Be the Place": Sean Penn Is Gothed Up and Great

If you Google the phrase "Danzig shopping for cat supplies," you'll find links to phone-cam shots of former Misfits singer Glenn Danzig crossing a grocery-store parking lot while wearing a Danzig T-shirt and carrying Fresh Step. He's a striking figure,…
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  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"

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