Friday
Mar182016

5 REASONS TO WATCH THE BRONZE WRITTEN BY A FOUL-MOUTHED FORMER GYMNAST

5 REASONS TO WATCH THE BRONZE WRITTEN BY A FOUL-MOUTHED FORMER GYMNAST

Since everyone will be pledging Allegiant to the third installment of the Divergent trilogy, it’s safe to say that The Bronze may not be winning any gold medals at the box office this weekend. But after reading tons of terrible reviews (probably from those who have never done a cartwheel or step foot in a gym to work out), we thought it was my acrobatic duty as a former gymnast to provide a different perspective on what makes The Bronze a head-over-heels hilariously funny movie. So here are 5 reasons to salute to the red, white, and Bronze

Reason 1: Originality

Much like having a gymnastics skill named after you, The Bronze is an original piece of work. When was the last time you watched a movie on the big screen about a foul-mouthed has-been gymnast? It’s like Stick It but for adults. Trust us, the strong R rating is pretty accurate and definitely not suitable for children unless you want to explain what “taint locket” is. Melissa Rauch stars as Hope Ann Gregory, who was once America’s sweetheart has now turned sour post winning bronze at the “world’s most prestigious gymnastics tournament” aka The Olympics. We gathered that they couldn’t actually say Olympics for legal reasons. It’s a refreshing (and rather dark comedic) take on what would have happened to a gymnast once their career is over and they have to deal with life as their endorsement deals dry up.

 

Reason 2: Magnificent Cameos

Gymnastics fans may flip out knowing that The Bronze had cameos from the oldest and youngest members from the gold-medal winning “Maginificent Seven” team from the 1996 Summer Olympics. The movie also had a cameo from a gymnastics legend, and no, not Nadia Comăneci, someone else BEFORE her. 

Reason 3: Keepin’ It Real

As a gymnastics fan and former gymnast, it’s frustrating watching a movie or TV show that shows gymnastics skills that are either too basic or overly exaggerated. It’s always something we would never see in real competitions. However, like Stick It and American Anthem, The Bronze had real gymnastics. I was most impressed that they even had a Podkopayeva vault (see below) in the movie. The Bronze also incorporated the current elite gymnastics D + E scoring system, which is probably still confusing for a lot of people who’s used to the century old 10.0 system (college gymnastics still uses the 10.0 system but that's a different story). What can I say, they’re keepin’ it real, son. 

Reason 4: Sebastian Stan

Hit play. You're welcome.

Reason 5: Stick the Landing and then some some

Remember when I said Sebastian Stan was enough of a reason to watch The Bronze? Yeah, I wasn’t joking. The hottie plays Lance Tucker, a former gold and silver medal winning male gymnast who once hooked up with Hope. There’s a scene in the movie where Hope and Lance do more than just stick the landing. If judges were to score the epic sex scene in The Bronze, the only appropriate number that comes to mind is 69. This is the scene everyone has talked about (for those who have seen it) and will talk about (for those who aren't total prudes). Check out the Sebastian Stan's tattoo in the movie. There's a slight glimpse of it in the gif below. Really sums up his character. Oh Bucky. 

As mentioned before, this is the movie you watch with your adult friends while your kids are in the other theater watching Allegiant or Zootopia. We recommend going somewhere that'll allow you to drink alcohol, if not, bring a flask. Hope would. Sip that drink and get ready to have your stomach in somersaults from laughter. The Bronze deserves a gold in our opinion. 

The Bronze, in theaters TODAY. 

Wednesday
Nov112015

SPECTRE REVIEW

SPECTRE REVIEW BY GREG LEWIS

SPECTRE is the fourth outing with Daniel Craig playing Ian Fleming’s iconic spy James Bond and the 24th entry in the franchise’s history. Craig doesn’t appear any worse for the wear in this latest installment as he deftly pulls off the hyper-demanding physical requirements of Bond and looks just as good wearing a Saville Row suit while enjoying his signature martini shaken not stirred.

Spectre begins with possibly one of the strongest opening sequences in the franchises recent history as Bond navigates an assassination assignment in Mexico City during the Day of the Dead ceremony. A jaw-dropping helicopter sequence follows and the film is literally off with a bang. The rest of the film never quite captures the intensity of the first 15 minutes or so despite an impressive number of action sequences and strong performances by the supporting characters when hand-to-hand combat is not occurring. 

Spectre follows Bond and latest Bond girl Madelaine Swann (played by doe-eyed Lea Seydoux) as they attempt to bring down the terrorist organization “Spectre” that has orchestrated a number of attacks globally. This film does not work from a Fleming novel and feels all the more rooted in the 21st century as a result. The notion of technological menace, constant surveillance and the government’s ability to keep an omnipresent eye on the entire nation gives it a far more modern and eerily realistic feeling than many previous Bond films.

Spectre doesn’t bring as many new revelations to the franchise as the last Bond film, Skyfall did. However, it does a great job of weaving together Craig’s previous three outings as Bond and gives some deferential nods to the series Dr. No origins.

The ethereally beautiful Seydoux makes a capable if not particularly memorable ‘Bond girl’. Judi Dench’s absence from the film is definitely palpable and viewers will no doubt miss the chemistry between her M and Craig’s Bond. Try as he might, Ralph Fiennes never quite comes close to filling Dench’s shoes as her no nonsense successor. Ben Whishaw continues to be a scene-stealer in the small but pivotal role of Q. Andrew Scott as the duplicitous C is a standout among the supporting cast.

Christoph Waltz is ideally cast to play the film’s main villain, and despite the very modern backdrop of technological peril, his character is clearly based on previous (and therefore a bit antiquated) Blofeld incarnations. Waltz’ Blofeld has less of a physical presence than previous Bond villains but instead of detracting from the film it actually allows for some truly absorbing scenes, though the dialogue in which he and Bond engage never comes close to matching the crackling repartee between Bond and Skyfall’s villain Silva.

Much speculation revolves around whether Craig will continue on to play James Bond. I can only hope so, given how his charisma more than makes up for any flaws that this film has. If anything, this latest installment shows how much the supporting characters truly add to the film. Naomie Harris’ resourceful and flirtatious Miss Moneypenny was given scant to do this go-round. The hulking presence of Dave Bautista as Mr. Hinx proves the series villain’s are often more memorable and just as much an audience favorite as Bond himself.
Spectre does move at a notably slower pace than most other 007 films in recent years,which isn’t necessarily a negative. Perhaps this even helps as it wisely takes a reverential look back on the franchise’s history. Spectre opened to box office records last week, signaling it will be a major hit for a franchise that has seen so many reiterations over the last fifty years.