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273. It Happened One Night – Valentine’s Day 2022 (#241)

Hosted by Andrew Quinn and Darren Mooney, and this week with special guest Ciara Moloney, The 250 is a weekly trip through some of the best (and worst) movies ever made, as voted for by Internet Movie Database Users. New episodes are released Saturdays at 6pm GMT.

So this week, Frank Capra’s It Happened One Night.

Wealthy heiress Ellie Andrews has married playboy “King” Westley agaisnt her father’s wishes. Hoping to reunite with her lost love, she absconds and finds herself on a night bus with recently-fired reported Peter Warne. Even drunk and unemployed, Warne can smell a story. He decides to join Andrews on this unlikely adventure, and sparks begin to fly.

At time of recording, it was ranked 241st on the list of the best movies of all time on the Internet Movie Database.

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New Escapist Column! On “Venom: Let There Be Carnage” as a Romantic Comedy…

I published a new column at The Escapist today. With Venom: Let There Be Carnage releasing in Irish cinemas this weekend, it seemed like as good an opportunity as any to take a look at the film.

Like its predecessor, Let There Be Carnage isn’t really a functional superhero movie, at least in the sense that modern audiences understand the genre. It’s lumpy, it’s irrational, it’s more interested in immediate thrills than world building. However, despite this, Let There Be Carnage is a surprisingly effective romantic comedy. It’s built around many of the same conventions and adheres to many of the same beats, telling a heart-warming story of an alien symbiote and its parasite.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

Sight Unseen: Killers and the Future of Film Criticism…

I remember it was only a few years ago that it was just really unapologetically bad movies with built-in audiences that refused (or simply couldn’t be bothered, knowing the inevitable trashing they’d receive) to be screened for critics. You know the films I’m talking about: horror remakes, horror sequels, horror in general. However, it seems that since G.I. Joe demonstrated that blockbusters can still bust blocks even without advanced critical presence. Perhaps it’s a side effect of the viral age we live in, but you don’t need a review in the Friday papers to put bums in seats. Anyway, apparently it looks like there’s more to come: Killers will not be screened for critics either.

Do we have a hit on our hands?

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Is the Romantic Comedy Dead & Gone…

I’m a romantic at heart. I really am. Underneath my cold, cynical exterior beats the heart of a poet. A bad poet, no doubt, but a poet nonetheless. Which is why I find it somewhat disingenuous when my mother or my aunt feel the need to attack me for not appreciating or understanding films like My Sister’s Keeper or The Ugly Truth. It’s easy to joke that “ha, I’m a dude and dudes don’t understand the romantic or emotional drama movies!” and so on, but I think that belies the problem. And the problem is that I don’t like too many romantic comedies because… well, they aren’t good movies (or, to qualify, I don’t believe they are good movies). Read on to hear my reasoning.

The only gold standard in the traditional romantic comedy is Matthew McConaughey's fake tan...

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Musicals For Macho, Macho Men…

A trend I’ve noticed appearing over the last few years is the none-too-subtle attempt to genre-shift movies away from the stereotypical audience demographics associated with those genres to other stereotypical audience demographics. I’m speaking of course of the trend to sell movie genres that have generally been associated as ‘chick fare’ to ‘manly men’. At the moment we have the news that a manly manly musical is being adapted to big screen by Hairspray helmer Adam Shankman – Rock of Ages will be a jukebox musical featuring artists like Journey or Twisted Sister and appears to be a blatant play for the middle age male audience.

Rock on, man...

Rock on, man...

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