Tag: Mary Lynn Rajskub

The Tomorrow War

When do you all wanna go? Tomorrow? Sure. Tomorrow will never be here, so that works, I am a fan of procrastinating war.

Unfortunately, The Tomorrow War has nothing to do with procrastination, although it uses something procrastinators wish they have.

See, this is a war that takes place somewhere in the future, not the present. You know, like the concept of tomorrow! So this is a war with time travel, but it shouldn’t be anything like whatever the fuck was going on in Tenet.

Back to procrastinators. Don’t you wish you had a time machine to go back and slap yourself into doing something before a project got overwhelming? Hells yeah.

I said slap, not shoot, what the fuck dudes. 

It was a day like any other day. People were doing sports watching on the TV, and then…and then…a large portal appeared from nowhere. A human lady came out and so did a lot of soldiers. They had a message. They were in a war in the future, against aliens. And they were definitely losing that war. A war that was going to kill every remaining soldier. So they needed help, recruits from the past, so that they could have more people for fighting. Oh shit.

Dan Forester (Chris Pratt) is just a science teacher during all this, but sure, he was in the military before. But retired now. The war first asked for the actual armies around the war, and then volunteers, and then sure enough, drafts happened. Not everyone was eligible to go to the future. They had to be scanned and matched with the history of the future, to make sure bringing that person to the future (and them potentially dying) wouldn’t alter the future in a way that ruins everything.

Dan has a wife (Betty Gilpin) and little girl (Ryan Kiera Armstrong) but sure enough, draft bells still came to his doorstep, and he was enlisted. Each term is only meant to be a week long, after about a week of training. If they survive, they get automatically sent back to their time line, richer, and won’t be picked again. But in Dan’s group, everything gets messy. They are sent to the future without full training, so it is up to him and one other to keep his team of mostly untrained people slightly together to help out the best they can, and they are thrown right into the fray.

Can they save the future?…By fixing the past? And stuff?

Also starring Yvonne Strahovski, J.K. Simmons, Sam Richardson, Jasmine Matthews, Edwin Hodge, Keith Powers, Mary Lynn Rajskub, and Mike Mitchel.

It is like we are glancing at the strangest Parks and Rec and Chuck crossover ever.

A sci-fi action movie has a lot of easy potential to just turn into a generic action flick with stranger weapons or people being killed. A lot of films have done it. The movie has to say something, or offer some nice twist. Give me something good to eat, a famous children’s rhyme once said.

To break down this film, I would say I did enjoy the beginning, the first arrival, the draft, the logic, the training. And even when they were first sent to the future. But real quick after that first sort of mission, it went real hard into generic pewpews for me. There were some plot scenes that mattered, but for a film that is 140 minutes, a not so insignificant chunk of it it doesn’t do a lot for me. However, the ending? I did enjoy the ending/final act/set piece of the movie. It took it away from the plot of the rest of the film, settings changed, and it gave me a fresh look on the action and the events and by then, it featured mostly just characters I could care about.

The ending saved the whole thing for me, that was trending pretty average in the middle, almost towards bad. But at this point, I think The Tomorrow War is actually a movie I could imagine watching (shock) a second time!

Pratt has perfected his twist of an action star on us, although I still prefer him to be a bit more goofy. I haven’t seen Strahovski in awhile, and I am bit disappointed that Gilpin was just given a generic house wife role. More importantly, with the time travel element, it never became confusing. The rules were pretty straight forward, and I don’t believe they broke any of them in getting to the end of the story.

We haven’t had a big rush of new sci-fi action films lately, or at least ones that were big enough for people to notice (I saw a few indie sci-fi action duds). Is this thing on par with films like The Thing or Starship Troopers? Nah. But it has a straightforward enough message and is entertaining in its own rights, so it is by far a passable entry into this genre.

3 out of 4.


Who the fuck is Wilson? Is this a movie about a volleyball?

Those were the only thoughts I had going into this movie. And when I saw one poster, that it would be able a creepy dude. Not just any creepy dude. A creepy older dude, with glasses, and a beard.

I also quickly learned that the movie would be a weird movie, because it was directed by Craig Johnson, who directed The Skeleton Twins. I didn’t love that one, but man, it was weird.

How shocking, that it is about a real person, not a volleyball.

Wilson (Woody Harrelson) isn’t actually creepy, really. He is a bit weird. He is weird because he hates the way the world is changing. He hates that everyone is so anti-social nowadays. He wants to communicate with people, even if they are strangers. He wants to just say what is on his mind and let other people say what is on their minds. He isn’t going to be trapped on his phone, or sleeping on the train, he just wants to experience the world. If he doesn’t slow down once in awhile, he might miss it, after all.

And then his best friend moves away, without any warning. Now Wilson is all alone. He has no purpose. Just his dog. No family, nothing. Well, he does have an ex-wife. Pippi (Laura Dern) was with Wilson for a few years, a real piece of work. Then one day she up and left him. Got an abortion and moved far, far away. But it turns out she is in the area again! So maybe he can try and see how she is and get to know her again. Maybe start a relationship so that the hole in his life can be filled.

Speaking of filling holes, turns out she didn’t get an abortion. She put the kid up for adoption and the girl is like, 17 now, living in the same city this whole time and he had no idea! Now Wilson has a family. He has a purpose. He just has to bring it all together.

Starring Isabella Amara as the daughter, along with Brett Gelman, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Judy Greer, Margo Martindale, Cheryl Hines, and Bill McCallum.

Apparently this is also the most shocking movie ever, from his point of view.

Wilson was a surprise hit, and surprisingly hysterical at points. The man was just so absurd and so socially weird it was constantly surprising. The main poster shows him standing next to another person at a urinal, with a ton of open urinals. The biggest social faux pas you can do in a restroom, outside of also hold a conversation with them, which he does. And it is a nice scene about families and how to raise your kids. And it ends with one of the funniest, unexpected yet completely expected lines ever. I was laughing way too long at it.

Wilson was great. As a person and a character study. A movie I could watch over and over again and still crack up. An instant classic on just its humor.

But its story could use some work, a lot of work. It feels so long but the movie is only about an hour and a half. It takes awhile to get to the point, and then it goes in several weird directions. Including jail, which lasts a long time for that late in the film. And we even have a post jail tiny plot to take care about. It is a bit disjointed in these regards.

Harrelson does a great performance though and always seems to find new ways to entertain me.

3 out of 4.

The Kings Of Summer

I’d argue that there are two really “big” coming of age indie movies competing for top dog status this summer. The bigger of the two is The Way, Way Back, as it was written by the same guys who brought us The Descendants a couple years ago. The lesser known movie is The Kings of Summer, written by Chris Galletta, who is writing his first movie.

If you are surprised that we have a first time movie writer, stop it. They are called indie films for a reason.

Indie films tend to include forest dance scenes and drum solos, right?
Being in high school can suck. Why? Well, your life is changing, you feel like an adult, but you still live with your parents. You just might lash out against your parents. Like Joe (Nick Robinson). His mom died a long time ago, and his dad (Nick Offerman) is now dating. He is also a bastard and has become very strict in his single parent raising. His sister (Alison Brie) has already moved on, but he is stuck with him for at least three years more.

Patrick (Gabriel Brasso, from The Big C) has a different problem. His parents (Marc Evan JacksonMegan Mullally) are over bearing. Not in any mean way, just nice. Way too nice. Really fucking nice. Also they are ridiculous, it is just hard to feel alive under their care.

Eventually, Joe has the idea to build a house in the woods. Not just some lame tree house either. A real house, with two stories, multiple rooms, and they can live there, by their own rules, live like MEN. You know, hunt their own food, boil their own water, the whole nine yards. Biaggio (Moises Arias) is there too, neither of them really know him, but they are afraid to tell him to leave.

We have a few kids, building a house in the woods, and attempting to live on their own. They of course will also discover a bit about themselves, their family, and maybe what it means to be a man. Potentially with the help of Kelly (Erin Moriarty), a fellow high school buddy. We also have Mary Lynn Rajskub (most well known as Heartfire from season 4 of Arrested Development) and Thomas Middleditch as the head cops on the missing kids case.

The race to grow the best pedo-stashe is on.
Coming of age films tend to be hit or miss with me. They are popular for both indie and mainstream movies, so to have a great one nowadays, you really have to offer up something new. Not just another misunderstood kid with big dreams.

The Kings of Summer takes the running away story, and well, runs away with it. For the first time movie writer, his dialogue was pretty top notch. Full of memorable quotes, I found myself looking for a piece of paper in the theater just to write some of the absurdly funny things I heard.

Witty comedy doesn’t make a complete film however, so the plot has to also stand on its own. I was afraid I would be dealing with a lot of teens who thought they were god’s gift to suburbia, the standard definition of first world problems. Thankfully, I found myself agreeing with Patrick and Joe, at least a little bit, and thought leaving home made sense for both characters.

It wasn’t perfect though. No, I would have changed the ending a lot. It was a bit too cliche at that point, which made it feel off from the rest of the movie. I am also pissed off by the romance element in the film, although it is more at the naivety of youth, and not for being actually bad. In other words, it hurt me square in the feels.

But despite that, The Kings Of Summer is wickedly funny and unique. For sure, it is worthy of at least one viewing, if not two in your summer line up.

3 out of 4.

Sunshine Cleaning

Definitely another movie I bought, just on the cover.

Sunshine Cleaning shows two women, carrying…the title of the movie, behind some caution tape.

Oooh, how mysterious. And possibly illegal? Here’s hoping for some dead bodies.

Blue suits
Oooh, definitely going to have some dead bodies.

Amy Adams is a single mother working as a maid in a cleaning service. But hey, at least she has a job. Her sister, Emily Blunt, is a slacker and fails at a lot of things she does.

Only real job is that she gets to occasionally babysit Amy’s son (Jason Spevack), while Amy goes to her “class”. And by class, we of course mean having sex with her former high school sweetheart, Steve Zahn. He is a cop and married with kids, but hey, affairs are fun. And he will totally probably leave his wife for her someday, right?


Well thanks to her inside connection, she hears that crime scene cleaning can be a pretty nice business, monetarily speaking. She is going to need new money for her kids private schooling, since he has a lot of behavioral problems at public and is getting kicked. But until then, the grandpa, Alan Arkin, will be able to look after him and teach him real world smarts.

Enlisting her sister as an employee, and figuring out the right paper work, they open up Sunshine Cleaning! You know, to clean up dead people blood and stuff. They also get the help of Clifton Collins Jr., a one armed man with a cleaning supplies shop. The film however makes the main characters recollect a lot on their own mothers suicide, and go on their own miniature journeys to self discovery.

Emily Blunt also starts a lesbian relationship with Mary Lynn Rajskub…because she saw her in a picture at one of the houses they were cleaning. Yeah, definitely weird.

Sunshine Cleaning
Needless to say their methods improved throughout the movie.

This film was definitely a lot more dramatic and sobering than I had thought. With such a colorful and sunny cover, it all kinds of come out of no where. There are some amusing moments, mostly between the grandfather and the son. Well, the grandfather and everyone really. Alan Arkin is the hidden star of this film, and is a nice surprise to watch.

I personally didn’t like a lot of the moments with Emily Blunt’s character, not because she is a screw up, but just…weird slow motion falling and sad time parts. There was this weird montage moment in the middle that just felt way overly dramatic and kind of stupid. In my mind at least.

The ending was a good one though, and most of the characters ended up pretty well. Some plot lines I don’t think they answered as well as they should have though.

2 out of 4.