Where’s your blog been, Brodie? Right here, and it’s new!

Brodie Fanns!

So, some of you are probably wondering why I haven’t posted a blog or a list in while. Or you’re not, cause you don’t read my blog. Who knows? But if you do, then you’ve noticed it’s been a while since I’ve posted a review or a list.

Well, to be honest, there are several reasons. For one there have been weekends where I just haven’t seen a movie. Remember, I’m busy with two jobs and since I have to pay for all this out of my pocket, I can’t always afford it. But I try. Rest assured by the end of the week I’ll post 3 new reviews. I have one written. What the hell, I’ll post that one now. (Scroll to the end of the post to read the review of “The Kingdom”

Another reason is, as some of you know, I’m also a writer of scripts. Screenplays, if you will. I’d say “aspiring”, but that means I hope to be one some day. And as I’m currently writing one, that is a full 15 pages in, I think I’ve moved past the “Hope to be one” to just “I am one.” I got in a groove with my script, and I’ve been focusing a lot of energy on that.

I haven’t hit a wall with the writing of the script, I’m still going strong. But that being in the zone with it time period has past. I’ve got the next few scenes that I’m writing mapped out, so to speak, so I know where I’m going. I can return to telling you what films to watch, and what is cool in the top 10.

Just so you know, I am working on a few HUGE posts that are time consuming, just compiling information, stuff for the lists and what not. One is what currently stands as a “Top 13 Reasons Why Scrubs is the Best Medical Show On Television”, but that number could change. I’m also working on what I call a “Love Letter to the Movies.” It’s a mini-auto-biography on why Brodie loves movies so damn much. This fall’s must read. Well… it’s the must read as far as myspace blogs written by me go.

Anywho, that’s just a little update, so you know I’m not dead. And to give you a taste of the upcoming reviews… Yes, it is possible for me to not think a George Clooney film is not the best thing known to man (shocking, isn’t it) and gangland flicks starring Marky Mark kinda peaked with The Departed.

Keep it real, homies,

-Brodie Mann

AND NOW… THE KINGDOM

The Kingdom

3 Stars

Movies covering any war are always a touchy subject. But covering a current one is just asking for controversy. Peter Berg tackles current American/Saudi relations in his new thriller The Kingdom, and isn’t exactly the political thriller it could have been.

Following a carefully coordinated series of attacks on an American oil company’s community in the Saudi capital of Riyadh, which left several FBI agents dead, a team of agents is sent to collect evidence and find out who was the mastermind of the attacks. American bureaucracy, Saudi traditions and cultural differences hinder their investigation along the way, but the team stops at nothing to catch the perpetrators of the heinous attacks.

At first glance, it seems like a noble effort on the part of Berg (Friday Night Lights, Very Bad Things) to fuse the action and political thriller genres, and on some levels, it works. It really does. But it’s also a deterrent, because by that same merit, it seems doomed to fail. Which makes this film hard to pin down. I honestly can’t tell which genre to put it into, and subsequently which one to judge it as. It moves around in both with great ease, but never really breaks the two to be it’s own film. It fascinates audiences while confusing them at the same time. Ultimately I have to determine which one is more dominant, and write my review as such. Hopefully I figure it out by the time I’m done writing it.

One must give credit to the cast, Jamie Foxx, Jason Bateman, Chris Cooper and Jennifer Garner play the FBI agents sent to Saudi Arabia, while their Saudi escort, Ashraf Barhom, should get equal attention, as he really pulls the story together for the characters. They could have played it as the atypical Americans vs. Saudis, us vs. them type of mentality, with the rah rah governmental attitude, but they didn’t, and it’s a true credit to their abilities to not do so with a story such as this, considering the geopolitical climate.

The strongest asset this movie has is it’s script. It perfects the balance of a political thriller and action war flick, one too few movies have even attempted. And it packs an emotional punch at the end that the general American audience may not even appreciate, but is full of impact none the less.

Overall, it’s definitely worth a look. But would I expect any sort of attention come awards season? Probably not anything outside of technical awards, and even that’s stretching it a bit, as that didn’t stand out. Though in a year of mostly underwhelming films, even the moderately good stand out as the cream of the crop.

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