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"Superstorm" Sandy wreaked havoc on the east coast. Unlike the aftermath of Katrina's attack on New Orleans, Congress sat on its hands and wouldn't release emergency funds to aid the area. So Paul McCartney called some friends: The Rolling Stones, Roger Waters, Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band and they called their friends; Michael Stipe and Eddie Vedder and two hours of rock music masterworks kept us happy while 12-12-12 uses its down time and other musical pauses and segues to remind all of us of the damage that was done. This is a glorious sit, if just for the music. Cranky's movie review

Madea's Christmas

It's a shame but, as with most of his films, Tyler Perry's A Madea's Christmas was not screened for us. We don't want to say it's because we're white but, well, we've said it before...

That written, we know more about the Madea character than we should, having not seen any of "her" movies. It's a damn shame

Walking With Dinosaurs

Parents with kids will have a great time at Walking With Dinosaurs. Parental age adults without kids will have a great time at Walking With Dinosaurs. If we hadn't been fighting the losing battle with tech problems plaguing the site this week, we'd be writing a lot more. [WARNING to Parents: the film is as educational as it is fun. Don't tip that fact to the kidlets and don't bring any kid under age 4. Some dinos eat other dinos Just saying.]

Last Vegas

Last Vegas stars Michael Douglas as the last confirmed bachelor on the planet <g> who succumbs to a lovely woman half his age. His bestest friends of 60 years -- Robert DeNiro, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Kline join him in Vegas for the final blowout. Rarely does a preview audience cheer and applaud a film, but this comedy / tug at your heart romance got all that and more. We had a great time despite the fact that our legs stopped working in the middle of our screening. The film is highly recommended despite the fact that Cranky fall down go boom.


A fractured family is reunited by the Christmas spirit... which may or may not be a good thing in Black Nativity, stuffed with name brand stars Forest Whitaker, Angela Bassett, Tyrese Gibson with Nas and Luke James from the musical side of the street. Jacob Latimore stars as a street punk teen, whose single mom (Jennifer Hudson) ships him from Baltimore to Harlem to meet grandparents -- for the first time -- and learn the New York streets, at Christmas. A story that relies so heavily on faith excludes those of us not of that faith; as a story of (potential) family reconciliation, we left the film not 100% sure why the fracture was so deep. Start with a teenage pregnancy, years in the past, and see if you can figure it out.


Homefront stars Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen, Sharlto Copley, Michael Imperioli and Samuel L. Jackson in an old script written by Sylvester Stallone. A bullying incident links en ex-cop to a battle against meth cookers, old revenge-minded mobsters. Wynona Ryder squeezes in a kidnapping, too. Not that Stallone lays things on too thick . . . Cranky's movie review


Spike Lee's Old Boy stars Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Olsen, Michael Imperioli and Samuel L. Jackson in a film that redefines what violence on film looks like. In one word: "Overwhelming" as in "distracting," as in, pass it by. Cranky's movie review

Hunger Games Catching Fire

The Hunger Games Catching Firebrings Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson (and Donald Sutherland and Stanley Tucci and Woody Harrelson) back to the big screen -- with Philip Seymour Hoffman joining the merry crew -- in the second of four movies in this trilogy . . . yeah, that makes my head hurt, too. This film was much better than the first stinker but it isn't a complete movie on its own. For those (like us) who hated The Hunger Games, this is a better.Cranky's movie review

Wallpaper downloads here.

Thor: The Dark World

Thor: The Dark World is where you're gonna be going and you know it <g>. It's a stand alone sequel pitting the God of Thunder (Chris Hemsworth) against the King of the Dark Elves (Christopher Eccleston). Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), significantly, is caught in the middle. Download wallpapers or read Cranky's movie review

The Motel Life

The Motel Life (ltd) is the serious indie flick of the week. While it's basically two men hiding from the police -- a hit and run accident comes into play -- the film is well scripted and well performed and should be well received by those who don't want to spend their dollars on special effects and fantasy. Cranky's movie review

Bettie Page Reveals All

The documentary, Bettie Page Reveals All was watched because ex-fanboy Cranky knows all about the now out of fashion idea of the movie "sex symbol." Page was an incredibly successful and popular star in the 1950s who disappeared from public view. Cranky's movie review

book thief

The Book Thief, stars Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson as the adoptive parents of a young girl (Sophie Nélisse) in an ever evolving Nazi Germany. The film fails to build tension and suspense when plenty of tension and suspense is built into the screenplay -- think "Jew hiding in the basement that the Gestapo wants to search..." Nevertheless, Cranky was crying like a baby when the film hit its conclusion. Those seeking a serious film, seek here.

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The Cranky Critic® is a Registered Trademark of, and his website is  Copyright © 1995-2017 by, Chuck Schwartz. Articles and interviews by Paul Fischer are Copyright © 1999 - 2006 Paul Fischer. All Rights Reserved. All images, unless otherwise noted, are property of and ©, ®, ™ their respective studios. Used by permission. Not to be used or copied for any commercial purpose. Academy Award™(s) and Oscar®(s) are registered trademarks and service marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.