Friday, October 25, 2019

Friends are the family we choose.

You know what I hate most about my job? I genuinely want to help people. 

Wait. Let me be clear. It's not the wanting to help people part that I hate, it's that so often, for an infinite number of reasons, it's f--king impossible to actually do any good. 

Traditionally, it's the awful nature of rotten kids interfering with the education of those that really need (and want) one, but lately, it's the adults. As countless initiatives are hurled at me, it's negated the impact I can have.

So when I see someone truly help another person, not only do I get inspired...

...but I also get jealous.

There have been few films this year that I have loved as much as Peanut Butter Falcon, even if it almost f--king killed me. 
Like running into an old friend after it's been too long, this incredibly touching tale of brotherhood and friendship left me grinning from ear-to-ear. And trust me, the smiling part was fun, you know? Helped offset all the snotty-faced ugly crying. (but more on that in a bit)

I mean, they had me at hello with Zack Gottsagen's performance, as it is legitimately impossible to not root for this dude. But while I'd like to say he's the ultimate underdog, the cast also features Dakota Johnson (who forever has my vote) and an impossibly forlorn Shia LaBeouf. I shit you not, I found myself not only cheering for these characters, but damn near clapping my ass off for these actors. 

Gottsagen plays, well, Zac, a young man abandoned by his family who is currently living in a rural North Carolina retirement home. Zac is a good guy with a big dream, but unfortunately wasting away with his roommate Carl ain't it. See, Zac yearns of being a professional wrestler, and, according to his nearly worn-out VHS cassette, there just so happens to be a top-flight wrestling school nearby. Under the tutelage of the legendary Salt Water Redneck, Zac believes that he can become a wrestling superstar.

While that plan is extremely f--king dicey at best, Zac has Down syndrome, and the state isn't necessarily jumping at the chance to support him on a road trip that likely ends with him breaking his goddamn neck. He's lovely case worker is supportive...but not crazy. And presumably, she needs her job. If only Zac could find a handsome drifter with nothing to lose to guide him.

Enter LaBeouf's Tyler, a down-on-his-luck fisherman on the run from both imaginary and actual demons. Tyler has f--ked up in immeasurable ways, and his chance encounter with Zac affords him the opportunity to heal, even if he doesn't see it at first.

The Watermelon Falcon sounds pretty rad, too.
What I hope you do see coming, are the Yays and Boos, if only so you can get a head start in running in the opposite f--king direction.

The comeback kids.

  • Goodness, I just sat down and you're hitting me with the trailer for A Hidden Life? Are all movies amazing and life affirming?
  • I feel like pudding for an actual crime is honestly, all things considered, a pretty good trade.
  • Dude, the Salt Water Redneck is cool enough. But the fact that he's played by Thomas Haden Church? *chef's kiss*
  • The inclusion of Jon Bernthal was much appreciated, even if whenever I see this guy I'm basically on the verge of tears immediately (damn you, Wind River [review], damn you).
  • Hey, do you want to come to my birthday party? 
  • Two movies, in a row, where some shitty kid gets punched directly in his awful face. *sigh* I guess dreams do come true.
  • I don't really give a shit. Yeah, but you do.
  • Maybe if Anton Chigurh would have been nicer to his Shopkeeper Guy, he too would have been offered moonshine.
  • Tyler, I'm gonna give you all my wishes for my birthday. Can, I get one, too Zac? Maybe something to remove this giant lump in my throat...
  • It's debatable whether or not Zac saved Tyler's entire life, but the rescuing of his right hand goes without question. (loved this scene)
  • He kisses her on the head! Aw.
  • And finally, that goddamned meeting with Clint. Just everything about that scene was absolute perfection. You want to feel all emotions possible? I'll give you this scene, you give me four minutes.
No better way to celebrate the finding the Allspark.
  • I don't know how this is even possible, but the next trailer after A Hidden Life? John Cena's Playing With Fire. Like...I was embarrassed. 
  • Here, Shia is in trouble for stealing crabs. Unlike in Nymphomaniac [review], where he was in trouble for sharing them.
  • While I'm all for packing light, Zac's escape in ONLY his tighty-whities seems excessive.
  • My wife can't handle scenes featuring vomit. (good thing I saw this alone)
  • The reveal of Tyler's past is handled masterfully, but goodness...the more information we get about that thing he did the more we understand why John Hawkes is so f--king pissed off. (oh yeah, by the way, John Hawkes is in this...and he's f--king terrifying as usual)
  • Oh, hold on. The sad/bad thing that Tyler did? There is another. 
  • I liked him and all, but Blind Jasper John kind of scared the shit out of me. 
  • Hey, Ratboy, could you please f--k the f--k off? Thanks.
  • Uh, Sam...maybe we dial it back a little bit, huh? I think you're taking this fake shit a bit serious. (but that was Jake the Snake? Holy shit!)
  • And finally, what the f--k was that ending? I'm barely keeping it together, and they pull some major f--kery here. Maaaaaajor. I'm not kidding you, I was so shocked, it legitimately took my breath away. I think everyone in the theater heard me gasp. Not the auditorium, mind you, the entire theater.
Due to a death in the family, I'm wrapping up this post in a moderately-sketchy hotel a few miles outside of Boston. The funeral service was yesterday, and now my brothers and I are going to spend the day together doing...something. We're not that good at planning...anything. 

I just spoke to my wife, and she's trying to hold it down back home, with sick kids, sports, and taking care of my mom's annoying parrot. Simultaneously, some poor/lovely person is standing in front of my classroom four hundred miles away trying to manage twenty-five sixth graders.

*smiling* I wish I could help.


  1. This seems like a really sweet movie! I know Jon is in it for a little bit only but I think I'll give this a go, I'mm intrigued abut what the hell that ending everyone talks about is

    I'm sorry you had a death in your family :(

    1. You should see it...I think/hope you will really like it!

      Ah, thank you. It was my mom's mom. Not too unexpected, but still pretty sad.

  2. The ending almost ruined the entire movie for me. It is SO stupid and manipulative. I'm glad you liked this though, I thought you would. I got so excited when Mick Foley showed up.

    I'm sorry for your loss.

    1. I don't think I would have hated the movie, but I probably would have been unable to speak for a few days.

      Shit! I think I either forgot Mick Foley was in it...or I missed him. Either way? UNACCEPTABLE.

      Oh, and hahahah...this is totally something I would like. Poor sap...

  3. I wasn’t really into the movie (really loved the idea but wasn’t a fan of the execution) and the ending completely ruined it for me.

    1. But was so sweeeeeet, right? Like, just the nicest little movie. Yeah, that ending cut me deep, but only because it BROKE ME.