Photo: Universal Pictures

Bob Odenkirk takes the bus to Painburg

Dad Wick. In Nobody, Bob Odenkirk plays a mild-mannered middle-aged family man who cures his impotence by killing a few dozen heavily-armed, home-invading Russian mobsters. It helps that he has a particular set of skills that come in handy in just those kinds of situations: Odenkirk’s timid sadsack is actually a secret super-soldier who is good at two things. Number one, lasagna. Two, mayhem.

Odenkirk is a versatile actor, and he has come a long way from his legendary sketch comedy show Mr. Show. Currently, he’s tragic weasel Saul Goodman in Better Call Saul, a rare spinoff TV show that…

The cast of Zack Snyder’s zombie epic ‘Army of the Dead’
The cast of Zack Snyder’s zombie epic ‘Army of the Dead’
Photo: Netflix

He should make nothing but zombie movies

Director Zack Snyder kicked off his movie career with the 2004 remake of George Romero’s zombie classic Dawn of the Dead — a movie that was both respectful of its source material and absolutely bananas. It was inspired.

I am not a fan of Snyder’s cinematic comic book adaptations, from the soft-core fascist of 300 to his recent triumph, the legendary ‘Snyder Cut’ of troubled wannabe blockbuster Justice League, an unhappy superhero orgy. But Dawn of the Dead crackled.

Thankfully, he’s returning to the land of the unliving. In Army of the Dead, Snyder is back at it in a…

Photo: Orion Pictures

A society is what it tells its children it is

I saw the 1988 animated Robocop TV show before I saw the R-rated 1987 movie that inspired it.

The cartoon toned down many aspects of the movie. Robocop isn’t a killing machine, for one. The show also didn’t openly mock Reaganism. And Robocop doesn’t shoot bullets in the cartoon. He shoots lasers. That’s nicer. The vibe is very cyberpunk meets GI Joe.

Clearly, an ambitious executive took a nuclear toot of cocaine and thought “A transformer policeman? Little boys are going to eat this shit up.” He thought correctly, too. It helped that the original Robocop was clearly an adults-only…

Photo: 20th Century Studios

The veteran movie director makes smart shoot ’em ups about men who brood

5. Collateral (2004)

This movie has four stars: Tom Cruise, Jamie Foxx, Michael Mann, and Los Angeles at night. Tom Cruise turns in one of his best performances as a silver-haired assassin who forces kindhearted cabbie Jamie Foxx to drive him from hit to hit. Cruise and Foxx are exceptional as the night turns deadly, and predators become prey. Mann is at his most cerebral — and visceral — in this underrated cat and mouse game.

4. Heat (1995)

Al Pacino and Robert De Niro, top cop and master criminal, sit across from each other in a diner. Two grim men of purpose with personal codes…

All 10 seasons of ‘Columbo’ are streaming on Peacock

Columbo is the best television cop character and that’s partly because he’s a wonderful, quirky little man, a gentle genius played with vulnerability and dignity by Peter Falk. Columbo is…

Jim and Ron Watkins in the new doc ‘Q: Into The Storm’
Jim and Ron Watkins in the new doc ‘Q: Into The Storm’
Photo: HBO

Stream the new HBO Max doc ‘Q: Into The Storm’ right now

One day, a soft, bored, angry man will tell the perfect lie and destroy the world. That is a theory. My theory. It is based on nothing but fear and the captivating new documentary Q: Into The Storm on HBO Max.

The six-episode series — directed and written by Cullen Hoback — is about the so-called far-right QAnon conspiracy theory, which started out as preposterous fake news on a fringe imageboard and then mutated into a combustible political movement.

There were many followers of the QAnon conspiracy theory involved in the storming of the U.S. Capitol on January 6th of…

Morfydd Clark in ‘St. Maud’
Morfydd Clark in ‘St. Maud’
Photo: A24

A holy warrior on a mission from God

Fear the fanatic. In the stylish horror movie St. Maud, we are introduced to Katie, a meek nurse who turns to Christ after failing to save the life of a patient. Her conversion also inspires a name change: Maud. With her new faith and identity, she accepts a job caring for a dancer dying of cancer. The pair form an intimate bond that is broken, sending Maud down a path to madness. Unless she isn’t mad? God spoke to Moses and Joan of Arc. Maud yearns for connection and purpose and He hears all prayers.

Director Rose Glass’s debut feature…

Photo by Diana Polekhina on Unsplash

First came the jab, then the crying jag

The good news is it has been two weeks since I got my second jab of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine and I can’t stop crying.

That’s the first side effect. I have become hopelessly sentimental. I tear up for no good reason. There are other side effects, like a sore arm and for some reason, my freezer is full of frozen pizzas. But my main reaction to the vaccine is sudden, involuntary, weeping.

After the nurse gave me the needle I looked at her with tender eyes welling up with tears and said “thank you” and without saying a word she…

The host of “Real time with Bill Maher”
The host of “Real time with Bill Maher”
Photo: HBO

The late-night host hates movies that make him uncomfortable

Does Bill Maher know Fox News just launched a new late-night comedy talk show?

Because he looks like he’s auditioning to be host. Last night on his HBO talk show, Maher breathlessly scolded liberal Hollywood for being liberal, which is just the kind of courageous free speech programming that attracts medical device advertising dollars on Fox.

The right-wing media machine provides a service to their viewers who return the favor with total attention and fealty. …

Photo: StudioCanal

The pros and cons of the drinking life are explored in the movie “Another Round’

There are so many words in the English language for drunk: wasted, trashed, sloshed. But my favorite is probably ‘lit,’ because it perfectly describes that first swallow of liquor. It burns going down and ignites the senses.

And then some of us turn into full-on wildfires.

The four main characters in the new movie Another Round are middle-aged men who have lost their spark until one of them makes a modest proposal during a particularly dull 40th birthday dinner: they should drink during the day at their jobs as boring high school teachers.

It would be an experiment based on…

John DeVore

Currently: Humungus. Formerly: NY Post, CONAN, Sirius XM. 2X James Beard award-winning essayist. I write about culture, politics, feelings.

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