Tag Archives: kyle mclaughlin

Inside Out – Review

26 Jun

There’s movies that come out once every so often that grab you by the head and makes it loud and clear that you are watching a work of greatness. Fortunately for Pixar, they’ve done that quite a bit with the Toy Story films, Monsters Inc., and Up.  I’m proud to say that they’ve done it again with their latest film, Inside Out. I didn’t know a lot about what the movie was about going into it other then the basic idea of it, nor was I extraordinarily excited about it, but this movie completely blew me away and will have me thinking for weeks.

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Riley Anderson (Kaitlyn Dias) is a normal young girl with loving parents who one day has to undergo a move from her house in Minnesota, leaving her hockey team and friends behind, to San Francisco. While normally keeping things under control in her mind’s control room, Riley’s emotions begin spiraling out of control not being sure on how to handle something like this. Joy (Amy Poehler) is getting increasingly worried that Sadness (Phyllis Smith) is going to turn all of Riley’s “core memories” into sad ones, which she doesn’t need at this point in her life. This clash of interests sends Joy and Sadness on a journey through Riley’s mind, leaving Anger (Lewis Black), Fear (Bill Hader), and Disgust (Mindy Kaling) in charge. While Joy and Sadness work to get Riley’s life back on track, the other emotions may inadvertently cause her to do something drastic.

While Toy Story and it’s sequels appealed to kids who obviously love their toys and Monsters Inc. let kids face their fears in a humorous way, I’m not very sure that Inside Out will stay with kids as much as it will teenagers and adults. This movie deals with complex human emotions using different personifications and metaphors to explain them, that I feel only people who is of the age to wrap their head around these ideas are going to feel the overwhelming happiness and appreciation that I have for this movie. Like the emotions and processes of though that it is personifying, this is actually a pretty complex film.

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What other movie can you say actually had its characters ride the Train of Thought? That’s only one example of the fine creativity that is at work here. There’s another great scene where a few of the characters enter the realm of abstract thought, resulting in some great animation but also unusually intelligent psychological banter. Really, the whole world of Riley’s mind is a place to behold. It’s so colorful and full of movement and different mind employees that there are plenty of things to laugh at and enjoy onscreen at any one moment. It’s no surprise that this movie looked so beautiful, considering Pixar has never really made an ugly movie.

Once again, like all of the emotions of Inside Out, your own emotions will run the gauntlet. This is promise you. Remember the first 15 minutes or so of Up? The movie doesn’t quite hit you that hard, but the sadness that you feel is a kind of nostalgic sadness. There are moments in this movie where you’ll look back on your own childhood and remember feeling a way that is shown in the movie. In that same vein, however, this movie will make you laugh, and laugh a lot. How extreme the emotions act with each other is such a joy to watch along with all of the mental puns thrown throughout. Also, the fact that Anger is always reading a newspaper can’t be a coincidence. It’s a perfectly casted movie with nearly perfect writing.

Simply put, Inside Out is probably going to be one of the best films I’ll see this entire year, and definitely one that’s destined to be a classic. I don’t mean that just for animated movies, but for movies in general. While I can’t say it’s exactly for kids, I’m sure kids will really enjoy the movie, but adults are going to have the times of their lives with this movie. It’s undeniably smart, highly emotional, and just completely beautiful. It would be a sin to miss out on this film, so please don’t.

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Twin Peaks and Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me – Review

24 Aug

Diane, it’s 4:37 on August 24th. I’m laying in bed thinking about the best way to review Twin Peaks and Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me. There are some things in this world that go beyond words and traditional description, and I believe that I have found one of them. As a proper introduction, imagine you are reading 10 different books at once but they each are part of the same bigger picture, despite how different they are. Some are romance, comedy, horror, sic-fi, and drama. That’s how you feel while watching the television show and subsequent movie.

When a local teenage girl, Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee) is found dead floating in the water, the quiet town of Twin Peaks turns into a beehive of criminal activity. FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper (Kyle McLaughlin) is sent in to investigate Laura’s mysterious death, but no one in Twin Peaks is as innocent as they look and massive web of murder, love, lust, and supernatural occurrences  tangles the town into chaos.

To really say what the entire plot is about would take many paragraphs of detailed information and explanations that it would pretty much ruin the experience of watching this fantastic tv show for yourselves. I don’t consider myself much of a tv person, but I have seen my fair share of shows, and Twin Peaks is my favorite for many reasons.

The characters are all so memorable. Special Agent Cooper is one of the most confident and likable protagonists despite all of the crazy things he says about dreams, mystics, and Tibet.  Then we have villains like Leo (Eric Da Re) and Windom Earle (Kenneth Welsh) who are so easy to hate. Characters come and go, but are always remembered due to the unique mark that each one leaves on you. When something good or bad happens to them, you care very much. We want to see everything turn out ok despite all of the drama.

Special credit goes to Angelo Badalamenti who has created a score for this show that is just as important as the dialogue. If something seedy is happening, we are treated with an undercurrent of smooth jazz that perfectly complements the scene. If things get romantic or dramatic, then cue the strings because a sweeping song is ready to play.

This was not a show that lasted for too long. Only two seasons were made due to a decline of interest half way through the second season. Also, if you look at this show and any other show, you’ll find that Twin Peaks is on a whole different playing field. It’s so strange and twisted that I can imagine it really wasn’t for everyone.

Think of your favorite genre. Drama? Twin Peaks is a drama. Comedy? Twin Peaks is a comedy. Sci-fi? Horror? Twin Peaks is these as well. Get my drift? This show has something for everyone. To me, it is the perfect television show. But that’s not all. In 1992, David Lynch released a prequel to his show, the feature length movie Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me.

In the town of Deer Meadow, a seventeen year old girl has just been murdered. Special Agent Dale Cooper is sent to investigate, and soon begins to predict that this same type of murder will happen again. Cut to one year later. Laura Palmer is not your typical high school girl. She is in deep with all of the wrong people both of this world and not. In one week, she will be dead.

Again, that’s all I can say about the plot without ruining anything. The great thing about this movie is that it perfectly answers some of the questions that the show asked, and all the while creates a few more questions that can only be answered by digging deeper into the hell that is Twin Peaks.

This movie goes way crazier at times than the show ever could because of either the censors or just what people would want to watch on television. There are scenes that left me speechless because of how strange they were. One scene in particular features a whacked out David Bowie yammering on about who knows what. Only David Lynch can think up this kind of stuff.

A lot of the great stuff about the tv show is in the movie. For instance, we see some characters that we have come to enjoy and also the great music composed by Angelo Badalamenti. The story is all about Laura Palmer, so not everyone is in the movie, unfortunately. As much as I would have liked to see everyone, it would have been really hard to and keep the main story on track. That’s why the show was so great.

Look at the picture above this sentence. Yeah. Pretty freaky. This is a lot more intense than the television show could have possibly hoped to be due to what was allowed. This is no hold bars David Lynch. It’s violent, sexual, dirty, and raw in the most twisted and repulsive ways. It may not be Lynch’s best work, but it is certainly a perfect compliment to the show.

Twin Peaks and Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me have one of the most addicting narratives ever put to screen because, I guarantee, you have never seen anything like it before. Prepare your mind, lose all sense of sanity, and enjoy the trip into dementia with these two excellent pieces. It’s one of the best trips I’ve ever been on.