In Katrina's wake: Bowdoin grad Mónica Guzmán shares her experiences
I think it first hit me when Shanelle stepped into the 93-degree heat outside the Astro Inn holding Erick in her arms. Erick was barely a week old. He was born on a Friday?the Friday before Hurricane Katrina drove his mother and so many others from their homes in New Orleans.
Movies are a girl?s best friend (boy?s, too)
I guess it's possible that you may not be as movie mad as I am. Maybe you haven't memorized Regal Cinema's floor plan or the Eveningstar's popcorn prices. Maybe you didn't shed tears of joy at Sin City. Heck, some of you have read this column in the past four years and laughed at my all-too-obvious malaise. And that's okay. I won't take it personally. But as high brow as you might consider yourself to be, you can't deny this: there's no escaping movies in college. If you hooked up at the toga party, you have Animal House to thank. Everywhere you turn, Scarface posters. Kill Bill soundtracks. Tyler Durden as your Facebook friend.
Plus-minus: three years later
A faculty-approved change to the grading system passed amid a wave of student controversy three years ago still has some students and faculty members debating its impact on Bowdoin's academic environment.
A safe interpretation of politics
Political thriller. What an oxymoron. Luckily for us, Hollywood always loves a challenge, and in this case, they usually deliver. Resembling the disaster movie's ability to make water and air exciting, the political thriller gets to say, aw, the hell with it, and put C-SPAN in a big, swirling tornado of stuff that just doesn't happen but would be really really cool if it did. But the best in the genre buckle their seat belts. The explosions can't blow up more brain cells than are required to follow its high-brow smarts, after all. You know, the kind of smarts that ooze out of every scene in The West Wing, where the speed at which characters scamper aimlessly through corridors matches their speaking rate, and all the overlapping dialogues rush just as quickly right over your head (though you'll never admit it).
Sin stuns senses with brutal brilliance
If you thought Kill Bill's flying body parts were as glorified as movie violence could get, think again. Sin City is violence and violence is Sin City. Nothing is made tolerable through cartoonish exaggeration, like Tarantino's ode to gore. Nor does this film ride on something as simple as the Bride's rampage of revenge. Not only is it deeply, darkly vicious, but Sin City is also viciously emotive, telling three tales of three men with a passion as graphic as its content.
After 11 years, film fest is back
If you've ever had classes in Sills, you may have taken a closer look at the wall next to Smith Auditorium. There, in two rows, hang 17 plaques, announcing the titles of films that won annual awards like Best Picture and Best Documentary from the 70s to the early 90s. But these were not Hollywood productions; they were student films.
The Letter explores racism in Maine
The city of Lewiston is coming to the big screen in a powerful documentary with an important message. But the story director Ziad Hamzeh's The Letter: An American Town and the Somali Invasion tells of the old mill town is not an easy one to hear. This is because The Letter is about something many Mainers believe they are far away from?racism.
Professor Profiles: Welsch knows film like it?s her job
Bowdoin?s Film Studies professor knows how to pick the good flicks
Most Bowdoin professors' shelves sag under the weight of books accumulated over years of study. But in Tricia Welsch's office in Sills Hall, you will find only movies. Lots and lots of movies. Bowdoin's one and only film professor has taught courses on everything from Alfred Hitchcock to biopics to crime films. The Orient sat down with Welsch to talk dog-running, Gloria Swanson, and the movies' power to banish death.
Pitch has good tone, but lower-key humor than its predecessors
Yes, friends, the 2004 Red Sox season was just begging to be a movie romance. We've all seen it: that undying, completely insane loyalty, the tears dripping into the bottle of Sam Adams, the pain, the triumphs, and David Ortiz. There's a real special, powerful, psychotic love between a Boston fan and his team. And oh yeah?Fever Pitch, the sweet, unexpectedly tame Farrelly brothers labor of love just in time for spring training, is also about a girl.
Bremer, students spar
Ambassador L. Paul Bremer spent more than 13 months under heavy fire as the most powerful administrator in an occupied Iraq. Standing behind a podium in Morrell Gymnasium last week, he became the target of an entirely different kind of bombardment.
Guess Who? An underachieving movie
As we all know, Hollywood is a loot it and shoot it industry. It has no qualms milking anything and everything for pay?whatever it's worth?over and over again. Strictly speaking, it's a plagiarist's paradise. And when the assignment is blockbuster comedy, Guess Who wanted the passing grade?
Presentation format, Rock's edgy humor dominate post-Oscar buzz
Not too long ago in Los Angeles, Hollywood was a little concerned that people wouldn't show up to its biggest party. First, those pesky elves and hobbits?such a hit last year?did not even RSVP. Second, the good movies went mostly unseen. Not even a Million Dollars could make your average Ray turn Aviator and fly Sideways from the norm to visit the Neverland of quality cinema, Baby, so the public at large would barely know this year's guests of honor.
Countdown to Oscar Night: Our Critics' Top Ten
Million Dollar Baby?A story of love and loyalty where even shadows illuminate and silence speaks poetry, Eastwood's masterpiece finds beauty in simplicity and completely won me over.
Countdown to Oscar Night: Our Oscar Predictions
Best Picture: The late surging Baby might take this from The Aviator, or then again, it might not.
Constantine a hell of a good time
Constantine seems like such an evil undertaking on so many levels. First, it's a comic book movie not released in the summer, where comic book movies belong. Instead, it's been flung into the February purgatory of action films that don't quite make the cut. Second, not only is Francis Lawrence a debut director, but his name sounds like a monk's and that doesn't seem right. And finally, the title character is played by Keanu Reeves, the one and only king of "whoa," and he's presumably reviving Neo for the fourth time, because the Wachowski Brothers ran out of Matrices and what else is he going to do?
Knitwit café offers haven for knitting and caffeine addicts
Before Anna Poe '87 opened the Knitwit Yarn Shop and Café in Portland in May, she met a fellow fan of the craft who could not have been more surprising. "I never would have thought he'd be interested in knitting," she said of the big, burly man who sat next to her on a plane as she knitted the time away
Hitch not great, but worth the hike
It may not be nutritious, but cotton candy is cute. It's light, pink, fluffy, all sweetness, and bad for your teeth. To exploit the sugary charm amassed within, it only asks that you kindly accept its chronic hydrophobia and forget everything you've ever learned about not eating string. Easy, but fun. Airy, yet irresistible.
Don?t put this Date on your calendar
There's a second after the end of a movie when you know if it was worth it. It's right after the screen goes black and the credits begin their crawl up from the off-screen abyss. If you're lucky, that second can bring nothing short of euphoria. Like at the end of Million Dollar Baby (the best film of last year and don't dare question it), in one precious instant I exhaled everything I had absorbed in those two-plus hours, keeping only the rich Eastwoody aftertaste. When the lights came up, I shook the dismembered popcorn flakes off my lap and walked tall all the way to the real world. Yeah. That's one way to leave a movie.
Enjoyment of Hide depends on what you're seeking
If big lonely houses are the classic cauldrons for toil and trouble in Hollywood horror, little kids are its most active ingredient. From The Shining to The Sixth Sense, the corrupted innocence of kiddies turned morbid or outright evil keeps coming back to haunt us.
Filmmakers and actors chase little golden men in the year of the biopic
It's the end of another year in Hollywood, and the Oscars are here again. Prada and Armani may still be wrapping red-carpet stars in their latest rags while host Chris Rock practices comedy in a tux, but something feels off.
Students lack knowledge of BSG officers, operations
Before Alkhaaliq Bashir '05 submitted his electronic ballot in the Bowdoin Student Government elections last April, he read some of the candidates' campaign proposals linked to the election site. Although these helped inform his selections, Bashir said he was wary of the promises they contained.
Kinsey '16 inspires controversial film
It's not every day that a star-studded motion picture with Oscar aspirations details the life and work of a Bowdoin alum. Kinsey, a Fox Searchlight release starring Liam Neeson, has received much critical praise since opening in select cities November 12.
The Incredibles is Pixar?s latest incredible triumph
The Incredibles is another sure sign that Pixar can't go wrong. The first time that quirky 3-D desk lamp bounced its way across movie screens and took its place as the 'i' in the Pixar Animation Studios logo, we were nine years younger and still in the reign of the Disney musical. But by the time the Toy Story credits rolled, a change was in the popcorn-scented air. Could it be? No more weepy Ariels or Mulan princesses, mushy love stories, or Hunchbacks and Simbas prancing around in song? That little lamp was a herald of a new age, and the beginning of the end of an important era in children's animation.
Where do we go from here?
In the days following the election, insecurity plagues Bowdoin students from both parties
Some watched it in Macmillan. Others tuned in at Morrell Lounge. But Ken Akiha '08 watched most of Tuesday's election returns in the "CNN room." "It was a little ridiculous," said the California native of the curious T.V. setup in Hyde, his first-year dorm. Fellow first years thought it would be fun to see what news network called the state results first.
Docs are latest political weapon
Why settle for a 30-second ad when you can make a movie?
In early July of this year, Democrats and Republicans were viciously at odds over one very hot, very divisive topic. It was on all the newscasts and the networks' verbal wrestling match shows. Chris Matthews bellowed and Bill O'Reilly spewed. It could have been gay marriage or abortion or job outsourcing?but it wasn't. It was a movie.
Do you bear a Grudge against silly horror movies?
In the old days of old flicks in monochrome, there was Nosferatu and The Mummy. Then came werewolves, robots, zombies, high-rise apes and acid-spewing aliens with mouths like nesting dolls from outer-space. Now, the world trembles before a new cinematic abomination, a creature so horrible, millions shrink and shriek at its mere presence on the screen. It's?it's?Sarah Michelle Gellar!
Team America wins with satire and salient puppet sex
Why leave all the big-screen up-chucking to Michael Moore when Trey Parker and Matt Stone's Team America: World Police can do it livelier, funnier, messier, on more people?and with puppets?
Mega-hit movies are usually pretty good, actually
It may have started back in our wild days of high school, but ever since it became cool, a certain crop of insubordinate post-teens have loved to say they hate Titanic. This isn't just another lewd teenage annoyance, like Barney and pogs. At its worst, it's a vicious, vilely anti-conformist movie loathing. Lady Leo lovers beware. These guys are still out there, still raging, still jealous of DiCaprio's ability to steam up a car.
Sky Captain flies with first-class eye candy
One fine day a few years back, director Kerry Conran had a vision, and most everything in it was fake. Fake sets, fake monsters, fake airplanes?real weird. So he got his crew together, busted out the blue screen, filmed for a measly 26 days and let the computer do the dirty work. And out came Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow.
Cellular makes for brain-free fun
If you thought your cell phone could only make funny noises and maybe take a lousy picture or two, think again. It can kill bad guys. It can save lives. It can make you a hero. Behold the wonders of modern technology.
Vanity Fair is pretty but vacant
I've often wondered if long-dead English authors ever roll in their graves when Hollywood takes a whack?often literally?at one of their masterpieces. It's not that Vanity Fair, a film based on William Makepeace Thackeray's classic novel, is akin to literature shredded to pieces?not exactly...
In fond remembrance of the summer?s blockbusters
Spider Man 2, Shrek 2, Harry Potter 3, Kill Bill 2, and Dodgeball
We've made it, everybody. Another movie summer come and gone. Catwoman, Club Dread, and Troy are safely behind us, groveling in the deep dungeon reserved for the celluloid sludge that should have never made it to the screen. Now it's full speed ahead into a fall season promising the usual suspects for Oscar glory.
First five days still busy for first years
Making the jump from high school lockers to roommates and shower shoes can seem daunting to some incoming first years. Then again, so can First-Year Orientation.