Reviews

Imitation-Game-Review

MOVIE REVIEW: ‘The Imitation Game’ Is Both Thrilling & Heartbreaking

Film: The Imitation Game
Starring: Benedict Cumberbatch
Directed by: Morten Tyldum

Though it feels created almost entirely for the purpose of generating awards season buzz for its lead actor, The Imitation Game is well-crafted World War II tale that is made a tad foolish thanks to bad CGI.

The story of Alan Turing is one that has long been needing a big screen adaptation, but it wasn’t until the last decade that his story found any real sense of closure. The reasoning for that is something I won’t give away in this review, but suffice to say there is a …

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SINGLE REVIEW: Fall Out Boy – “The Kids Aren’t Alright”

Artist: Fall Out Boy
Song: “The Kids Aren’t Alright”
Album: American Beauty / American Psycho

The rumors of Fall Out Boy’s plans to release a follow-up to Save Rock And Roll in 2015 have recently been proven true, and now we find ourselves in the midst of a promotional campaign that has encountered its fair share of criticism. We have made it a point to review every new song that has surfaced thus far, and today are continuing those efforts by taking a look at “The Kids Aren’t Alright,” which premiered online earlier this week. If you missed the …

The-Pinkprint-Review

REVIEW: Nicki Minaj – ‘The Pinkprint’

Artist: Nicki Minaj
Album: The Pinkprint
Genre: Hip-Hop
Label: Young Money

Whenever new material from Nicki Minaj arrives online people are quick to ask whether the pop star’s delivery falls under the category of ‘radio’ or ‘mixtape’ Minaj. The former is typically viewed a hook-heavy club offering, while the latter tends to refer to tracks where Minaj drops all pop sensibility in preference of her hip-hop roots. The Pinkprint is a perfect combination of both, though I would argue that it offers the least radio ready collection of tracks Nicki has shared with fans to date. That’s not a complaint, …

top-five

MOVIE REVIEW: ‘Top Five’ Is The Funniest Film of 2014

Film: Top Five
Starring: Chris Rock, Rosario Dawson
Directed by: Chris Rock

Taking filmmaking cues from everyone who has previously captured NYC and relationships with unflinching honesty, Chris Rock has crafted one hell of a comedic feature with Top Five. It’s a story about love, both for others and yourself, as well as a satirical take on our society that will leave you in stitches for days.…

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MOVIE REVIEW: ‘The Homesman’ Offers First-Rate Storytelling

Film: The Homesman
Starring: Hillary Swank, Tommy Lee Jones
Directed by: Tommy Lee Jones

In a world overrun with over-the-top CGI epics, The Homesman serves as a reminder that sometimes the simplest stories are also the most compelling.

Directed and co-written by Tommy Lee Jones, The Homesman tells the story of an unlikely adventure that takes place in 1850s North America. It’s based on the 1988 novel of the same name by Glendon Swarthout, which I have never read or even heard of prior to researching this film. I’m all for recognizing the works that films are based upon, but …

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MOVIE REVIEW: ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1′ Leaves A Lot To Be Desired

Film: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence
Directed by: Francis Lawrence

I can still clearly recall walking out of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire with a sense of disbelief coursing through my veins. After being horribly underwhelmed by the initial outing of the Hunger Games franchise, the first sequel proved to be top notch entertainment. I was legitimately excited for the next chapter, despite the fact it was the first entry in a two-part finale fans of the novels had told me never really needed to be split. I didn’t care, at least not at the time, …

cursive

REVIEW: Cursive – ‘The Ugly Organ’ Reissue

Artist: Cursive
Album: The Ugly Organ Reissue
Genre: Post-Hardcore, Indie
Label: Saddle Creek

Cursive recently reissued their monumental album, The Ugly Organ. Featuring the original work remastered, and eight bonus tracks, The Ugly Organ revisited is a wonderfully eccentric trip down memory lane.

Featuring a fuller, more prominent production, every percussion hit, guitar resonance, and vocal outburst feels all the more weighted. For those who–and there are many of you–adored the psychedelic rock experience that was The Ugly Organ back in 2003, there is no reason for you to not once again be gawking over its glory these eleven …

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MOVIE REVIEW: ‘Penguins Of Madagascar’ Offers Fun & Adventure For Everyone

Film: Penguins Of Madagascar
Starring: Tom McGrath, Chris Miller
Directed by: Eric Darnell, Simon J. Smith

Several years after first appearing as lovable side characters in Madagascar, the flightless birds better known as the Penguins Of Madagascar have finally been given a hilarious film all their own.

Spinoffs are tricky. On the one hand, these features exist to allow beloved characters from popular films a chance to shine away from the large shadow of the original work’s leads. On the other hand, these features also help build cinematic universes, which in 2014 is something every major studio wants to …

tvotr

REVIEW: TV On The Radio – ‘Seeds’

Artist: TV On The Radio
Album: Seeds
Label: Harvest
Genre: Indie, Synthpop

I approached TV On The Radio’s Seeds as a newcomer to the stratosphere of sound the band creates. Being my first proper experience with the band that has been so heavily recommended to me, Seeds was a needed escape.

Seeds is a collection of fun, electronic indie-pop that doesn’t quit from beginning to end. Starting off with the surreal introduction of “Quartz,” TV On The Radio bleed fun through soundwaves emitted by their instruments. The opening of “Careful You” caught me immediately, and remained as one of …

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MOVIE REVIEW: ‘Sex Ed’ Is The Best Comedy Of The Fall

Film: Sex Ed
Starring: Haley Joel Osment, Laura Harring
Directed by: Isaac Feder

Topping off a year-plus run of great supporting roles in several underrated indie gems, Haley Joel Osment is back in the spotlight with a hilarious new film called Sex Ed.

Hollywood contains a long history of finding humor by showcasing children behaving badly, but rarely has a story riddled with filth been met with the amount of heart found in Isaac Feder’s Sex Ed. Based on a script from Bill Kennedy, the film follows a twenty-something named Eddie — who, following a long bout of …

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REVIEW: One Direction – ‘Four’

Artist: One Direction
Album: Four
Genre: Pop
Label: Columbia/Syco

A year after delivering their hit-filled record Midnight Memories, One Direction have returned with a new album that features a far more mature sound.

It’s hard to understand when the members of One Direction found time to record new material over the last twelve months. Between seemingly endless world tour plans, promotional appearances, charitable efforts, pop-up shops, and everything in between, it’s kind of hard to believe the five-piece boy band have recorded and released an album every year since 2011. Four is by far the most mature record of …

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REVIEW: Various Artists – ‘Punk Goes Pop Vol. 6′

Artist: Various
Album: Punk Goes Pop Vol. 6
Genre: Covers/Compilation
Label: Fearless Records

Two years have passed since Fearless Records shared Punk Goes Pop Vol. 5, and in that time the world of top 40 music has undergone quite a transformation. There is less music created by actual instruments at radio today than ever before, replaced at a startling rate by EDM headliners and star-studded collaborative efforts that revolve around mindless hooks backed by thumping bass. Transforming these tracks into well-executed covers performed by artists using guitars is no easy task, but Fearless found thirteen artists up to the …