AND SO IT GOES - Not as Good As It Gets, but Good

Friday, July 25, 2014

And So It Goes marks the first on screen collaboration for film legends Michael Douglas and Diane Keaton 


I think of myself has someone who keeps up with pop culture and has no problem enjoying things aimed at a younger audience, but I have to admit, when I was given the choice between seeing Diane Keaton & Michael Douglas in a Rob Reiner comedy or attending the screening of Red Band Society, which looks like a good new show on Fox, aimed at the The Fault in Our Stars audience, which included free refreshments, Q&A with the cast and giveaways.  I unequivocally chose And So It Goes,  because I feel comfortable with these actors.  Keaton, Douglas, Reiner, although much older than I am, feel like old friends and I couldn't wait to be in their company.


And So It Goes is about Oren Little (Douglas) a somewhat cantankerous widower who still runs a real estate agency in an affluent Connecticut suburb, Oren walks around with the swagger of a privileged rich, white male, but like most after the bottom fell out, is not doing quite as well as he used to, making him determined to get every penny out of selling his family estate.

Perhaps purposefully, art imitates life, as Oren's son, (Like Douglas' own son) because of or in-spite of a privileged up bringing, has screwed up his life with drugs. The one thing he's done right is produce an adorable 10 year-old daughter, Sarah (Sterling Jerins), who Oren meets when his son drops her off at his doorstep, as he's leaving to go serve time.


Leah (Keaton) (click for Diane Keaton interview on Youtube) is a semi-professional chanteuse singing in her sweet, but reed thin voice, at a small bistro in town.  She's also Oren's neighbor.  As with all rom/coms, no matter what the age of the couple, there's plenty of friction, which leads to heat, which leads to disappointment and misunderstandings.


The movie features a cast of other assorted neighbors of "Little Shangri La" the apartment complex Oren owns and has taken up residence while his house sells. One of the tenants is a pregnant Yaya DaCosta (Alafia), an actress on the rise who I got to interview (click for post) last summer, when she truly was pregnant. Yaya is currently set to play the late Whitney Houston in Angela Bassett's upcoming TV movie.


And So It Goes  is written by As Good As It Gets screenwriter Mark Andrus, only it's not as good as what we got from that movie.  And, no offense to Michael Douglas, but he can't hold a candle to Jack Nicholson when it comes to playing a crusty, but charming old guy still trying to win the girl. Still, this movie is sweet, watchable and feels nicely familiar -  And So Go To See It ... or wait for the DVD.

While You're Here

You may as well purchase Diane Keaton's latest book "Let's Just Say It Wasn't Pretty" and support Tinsel & Tine as an Amazon Affiliate:


T &T's LAMB Score: 3 outta 5

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SambWrite Blog Contributor: LUCY


 Ready for Scarlett Johansson to perform “Through the Wormhole”-esq feats with Morgan Freeman conveniently there to explain it all? 


By Tinsel & Tine Blog Contributor: Sam Watson

“Lucy” was written and directed by Luc Besson, and judging from the trailer, I wasn't quite sure what to make of this movie -
Would it be straight up science fiction?
Or be similar to recent comic book flicks in which we see characters develop superhuman abilities?  -
I wasn't sure, and after seeing the film, I don’t think it nails down what it is, either.

The film revolves around Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) – a 25-year-old student, who may or may not be studying abroad, but definitely partying it up, in Taiwain. Her friend Richard (Pilou Asbæk) forces her to deliver a suitcase to some pretty bad people led by Mr. Jang (Choi Min-shik), who we find out plans to distribute the next “it” drug across Europe. Problem is, Jang needs mules to deliver said drugs to targeted cities. So, they implant bags of the drug- blue rocks that may elicit the copyright ire of Walter White- into the bellies of Lucy and three other poor saps. Jang’s English-speaking associate then threatens their lives and families if they don’t complete their mission. Lucy is eventually roughed up by one of her guards, which causes her belly bag to rupture, spilling the drug directly into her blood stream in huge quantities. This has a surprising effect on the woman as it drastically enables her to use more brainpower than anyone has ever before.

Professor Norman (Morgan Freeman) is introduced, while sharing his research on the brain with the most polite class ever. As with “Through the Wormhole”, Freeman’s character is there to explain all this weird science stuff to us. “Lucy” employs one of the most well known tropes of science fiction: The notion that humans only use 10% of their brains, and what if we could unlock the other 90? This is something we’ve seen in countless other films and sci-fi mediums, but “Lucy” fails to establish the rules of its own universe. In general, movies require us to dispel our beliefs about reality and to buy into the rules of the fictional world on the screen. This is especially true of science fiction and fantasy flicks, which require us to believe that a man can fly, ships can travel faster than light and suits of armor can make mere humans into living tanks. So, it’s important to set up the rules of a movie’s universe and to stick to them. “Lucy’s” rules are basically explained
to us when Professor Smooth Voice tells his class what would theoretically happen if someone started to use more than 10% of his or her brain. He goes through it in stages. What would happen at 20%? What would happen at 40%, 50% and so on? But his predictions only go so far, so we are left wondering what Lucy will be able to accomplish as her brain reaches full power. And that’s a good thing. You don’t want to know what’s exactly going to happen. The audience should be able to experience Lucy’s transformation with surprise and fear for her well-being. But things happen to her onscreen, and are never explained. There’s a scene on an airplane, where Lucy’s body appears to be on the fritz, and we’re not quite sure why. It’s as though the audience is supposed to simply accept what we see without any sort of cohesive explanation that makes sense.

I feel that if this were a “Superman” film, we would never get the explanation of why Superman can fly, but Amr Waked), a cop, who, when witnessing Lucy’s abilities for the first time, doesn’t have any reaction that indicates surprise or confusion. He only states that it was one of the more freaky things he’s seen on the job, and that’s it! He immediately accepts that Lucy can perform these supernatural feats and doesn’t question it. He simply straps in for the ride. 
simply just that he’s a man who can fly, so deal with it. I actually have a theory that Besson wants the audience to be just like Pierre Del Rio (

One of the film’s central conflicts revolves around the fact that Lucy is losing her humanity as her brainpower nears 100%. And that is a very tragic notion- to loose the emotions, desires and functions that make us a complicated, relatable and unique species. The film wants us to feel bad for Lucy’s continued evolution into some sort of machine-like state, but we never do...

And that’s mainly because we never get to meet Lucy as an actual well-rounded and fleshed out human being before her change. It’s hard to care about someone loosing her humanity if we were never able to connect with it in the first place. Presenting Lucy as nothing more than a student/party girl leaves us with nothing to relate to on a human level. So every time she expresses concern over becoming less human, those scenes just don’t carry the weight they should.


Lucy has a penchant for telling us all the different ways she feels different and it usually comes off as very silly. Even Morgan Freeman eventually sounds more like someone who’s stoned, as if he just smoked his best weed and feels like explaining grand scientific concepts to all of his friends. Also, less than halfway through the film, I realized that “brain” is a very awkward word to say in excess. Brain. It just doesn’t sound quite natural, especially when used in lines such as “I can feel my brain”, which is something Lucy says at one point. I half expected her to then utter, “Whoa, man” as a puff of scented smoke emerges from her mouth.

 This film could have been a fun science fiction/action movie to fill our eyes with without our brains getting in
the way. But the director doesn’t allow us such an escape. From the very first line of the movie, it’s apparent that the film has a message and it doesn’t let us forget. It also manages to confuse us on what that message actually is. Should ultimate knowledge be shared among mankind or is such knowledge dangerous, because of what mankind might choose to do with it? I think that the film does state which side of this issue it supports, but the getting there is very muddled by Lucy’s confusing display of power. Professor Norman flip-flops on this issue a couple of times. And, judging from a Morgan Freeman voiceover, we are supposed to link the dangers of ultimate knowledge with the corrupt and violent bad guys who are after Lucy. But that falls flat, because these guys are really only pissed that she screwed up their drug business and are out for vengeance.

This movie wasn’t without its moments of fun and light heartedness, though- especially when the action ramps up to a sudden ridiculous degree (rocket launcher). One of Mr. Jang’s minions runs over to his master and declares Lucy a witch after he witnesses her power during a pretty comedic showdown in a hospital hallway. But these moments are short lived, because the rest of the story feels as stilted and mechanical as Lucy herself. So, now let me amend my opening sentence by saying: If you want to see Scarlett Johansson perform “Through the Wormhole”-esq feats with Morgan Freeman conveniently there to explain it all, well, you should probably ignore the good professor, because he’s totally high and she’s obviously tripping on something synthetic.

T &T's LAMB Score: 2.5 outta 5

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OPENING SOON! FOODIE FILM



THE HUNDRED FOOT JOURNEY

Speaks to our brand of Food in Film -

Based on the best-selling novel by Richard C. Morais, Produced by Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey and stars Academy Award®-winner Helen Mirren.

Hassan Kadam (Manish Dayal) is a culinary ingénue with the gastronomic equivalent of perfect pitch. Displaced from their native India, the Kadam family, led by Papa (Om Puri), settles in the quaint village of Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val in the south of France. Filled with charm, it is both picturesque and elegant – the ideal place to settle down and open an Indian restaurant, Maison Mumbai. That is, until the chilly chef proprietress of Le Saule Pleureur, a Michelin-starred, classical French restaurant run by Madame Mallory (Mirren) gets wind of it.


Opens August 8th, 2014

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FIFTY SHADES OF GREY TRAILER



Personally, I still maintain, what made the book(s) a guilty pleasure can't be captured in a movie, it's just not the type of story that will translate well on screen. That being said, I'll still be the first one there come Valentine's Day 2015! Here's Tinsel & Tine's Review of the Books - My Two Cents on Fifty Shades of Grey (Book / Movie)

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Hot Movie Coming this Fall - ADDICTED

This rather reminds me of one of my favorite movies "Unfaithful"




SYNOPSIS: Based on the best-selling novel by Zane, ADDICTED is a sexy and provocative thriller about desire and the dangers of indiscretion. Successful businesswoman Zoe Reynard (Sharon Leal) appears to have attained it all – the dream husband she loves (Boris Kodjoe), two wonderful children and a flourishing career. As perfect as everything appears from the outside, Zoe is still drawn to temptations she cannot escape or resist. As she pursues a secretive life, Zoe finds herself risking it all when she heads down a perilous path she may not survive.

DIRECTED BY: Bille Woodruff
CAST: Sharon Leal, Boris Kodjoe, Tyson Beckford, Kat Graham, and William Levy
SCREENPLAY BY: Christina Welsh and Ernie Barbarash

#ADDICTED opens in theaters nationwide on OCTOBER 10th, 2014!

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AFRICAN AMERICAN FILM FESTIVAL RELEASING

AFRICAN AMERICAN FILM FESTIVAL RELEASING
Latest distribution from AFFRM - VANISHING PEARLS:Following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, Nailah Jefferson's VANISHING PEARLS chronicles the untold story of personal and professional devastation in Pointe à la Hache, a close-knit fishing village on the Gulf coast.

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Spotlight: Philly Phaithful Event

Spotlight: Philly Phaithful Event
I'm moving into West Philly next week from Mt. Airy in an effort to be closer to happenings in Center City and the outlying areas. I'm hoping a shorter commute will allow me to cover more events, events like this one that kicked off my Memorial Weekend. The Philly Phaithful Launch Party for the World Cup Collection by Live, Breathe, Futbol READ MORE

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If you’re a fan of "The Fault in Our Stars", than you’ll probably get into this new show premiering on Fox - RED BAND SOCIETY, which takes place in a hospital for young adults coping with a myriad of health concerns while still dealing with regular teen issues and becoming friends. See the pilot episode in the theater! INCLUDING FREE concessions, bracelets and t-shirts along with 3 cast members from the show for a Q&A after the screening.
DATE: Thursday, June 26, 2014 PLACE:Riverview Theater GET PASSES

Philadelphia Magazine » Blog » Foobooz

15 Top Food in Film Flicks

15 Top Food in Film Flicks
Cozy Quilt of Food Movies, we'll add more patches as T &T discovers more films where food plays the biggest "roll"

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About This Blog

is about discovering what I find pleasing in screening & eating - in case you missed it, the name is a play on Tinseltown using the Tines of a Fork.

Feel free to send me info on a film or new restaurant you'd like me to highlight.
-tinseltine@gmail.com


Will there ever be a cap on movie prices?

Will we one day pay $20 a pop?

Why don't we pay on a scale?

A crap movie like everything Adam Sandler has ever done should cost about $4.50.
Big action movies like"Lord of the Rings", "Iron Man," "Transformers" are worth $10.
Woody Allen movie or something like "Silver Linings Playbook" $6-$7.
A chick flick or light comedy $5.75 and most Indie Films $5.25.

You could even do it by seasons - all summer block busters from May to August - $10
Sept - November 15th $3.50 - $4
Back to $10 for Thanksgiving and Christmas etc...

Or you can do it by A Actors ($9 - $10), B Actors ($6 - $7) TV actors on the big screen ($3.50 - $4)

Surely I'm not the first person to realize this makes sense. Has it been voted on in the Motion Picture Industry and then vetoed? If so, why?

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