First Impressions: Trial & Error

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4/5 Stars

Summary: “Josh, a bright-eyed New York lawyer, heads to a tiny Southern town to defend an eccentric poetry professor accused of the hilariously bizarre murder of his wife. Josh’s optimism never ceases despite his legal team of unqualified local misfits and a makeshift office behind a taxidermy shop. Winning his first big case isn’t going to be easy, especially when his client continues to unwittingly say and do things that make him look guilty. Despite being complete underdogs, he and his ragtag team continue to take two steps forward, one step back to keep his client from stepping into death row.”

It’s The Office meets a murder trial and I absolutely love it!

John Lithgow starring in Trial & Error (and Nicholas D’Agosto cause I love him) were reasons enough for me to check out the show, but then the humor in it is what got me to stay.

First off, these characters are so out there, you can’t help but love them.  Seriously, Sherri Shepherd’s character is perfect.  They’re all kind of the weirdest of the weird, trying to come together to do something that ordinarily would be taken very seriously.

I am starting to be over all the police/crime dramas because they are blending in to being the exact same thing with different characters.  Adding the comedy of a half hour sitcom is extremely refreshing.

Like I said with Making History, I am not sure how long the show can last story-wise, but I am so excited to watch it happen.  If you think you might like a mockumentary show with a little bit of dark humor (not too dark, this is network TV) give it a watch and let me know what you think!

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First Impressions: Making History

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4/5 Stars

Summary: “College facilities manager Dan Chambers is misunderstood, but when he discovers time travel, he finds that he can claim movie quotes and stand-up bits as his own and be the cool guy in the 18th century. He doesn’t initially realize that by transporting himself back in time to hang out with his girlfriend, Deborah, he is altering events in the present. When Dan’s meddling leads to Paul Revere postponing his famous ride and altering the events of the American Revolution, he must turn to popular history professor Chris Parish for help. Together, Dan, Deborah and Chris try to set everything right.”

This season of new TV brought a bunch of shows dealing with time travel, Making History is the one that I have been excitedly waiting for since I first heard about it.  Seeing Leighton Meester and Adam Pally star and then the premise itself seemed perfect.

The first two episodes have aired so far, and I’m glad to say I wasn’t disappointed.  It’s awesome seeing a historical comedy instead of the usual drama.  The jokes are great and relevant to things going on today.  I’m not really sure as to where the show is going to go after the second episode since it kind of solved the problem from the pilot, but I’m interested to find out.

My only complaint would be that it is too short.  I’ve become less and less a fan of the half hour format of TV, especially for shows that aren’t your typical sitcom.  A show like this could be something really great if given the time to develop the characters and get you into the world.  I know it’ll never become a full hour, but hopefully it’s going to be given (at least) a full season and people give it a chance.

Seriously, watch it.  And make all your friends watch it.

Sausage Party

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3/5 Stars

Summary: “A sausage strives to discover the truth about his existence.”

I really wanted to love this movie, but it was just middle of the line.  Throughout it, there were a few moments where I thought the storyline was pretty good, but then others where it was just a movie relying on the fact that it was an adult animation to get by.  Which, if that’s what you want, that’s fine—you’re going to love the movie.

The villain in the movie didn’t work too well for me, because none of his scenes seemed to matter.  I almost feel like the movie would have been 100 times better if the main characters had made it out of the food store and had to battle against the humans the entire time.

To be fair, there were great jokes all over the place as you would expect from Seth Rogen and co.  Some of it was actually pretty smart humor, not just all easy sex jokes.  It was just that when there wasn’t a joke I was kind of bored.

Also, I really could have done without that orgy scene at the end.  That was weird.

Available on Netflix.

The Truman Show

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3/5 Stars

Summary: “An insurance salesman/adjuster discovers his entire life is actually a television show.”

Look at me watching another one of those “classic” movies that I’ve never seen and people always talk about!

Unfortunately, like with The Usual Suspects, I didn’t really get the big deal.  It was an okay movie with an interesting idea, but not something I would choose to watch a second time or really even talk about afterwards.  This could be because of the time I’m watching it though.  Back in 1998, when it came out, I can see the appeal of how strange a story it is.  But now we have people who are sharing many aspects of their life with us on YouTube and all the other social media sites, it’s not that big of a deal.

There are a few funny moments, but it’s definitely not a Jim Carrey comedy.

I love that when The Truman Show first came out, the movie got categorized as fantasy/sci-fi, but now it’s kind of just life.  As I was watching the movie, I did start to think about what a remake/sequel would be like.  It’s like the perfect time for something like that to be made.  There’d be people wanting to put themselves in the same situation as Truman instead of (or probably along with) people trying to break him out and tell him the truth.  Plus it would feel a lot less cheesy like I thought some of the moments in the original were.

Overall, kind of a take it or leave it movie for me.  But if they sometime decide to pick up this world again, I will definitely be interested.

Available on Amazon Prime.

The Lobster

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4/5 Stars

Summary: “David has just been dumped by his wife. To make matters worse, David lives in a society where single people have 45 days to find true love, or else they are turned into the animal of their choice and released into the woods. David is kept at the mysterious HOTEL while he searches for a new partner, and after several romantic misadventures decides to make a daring escape to abandon this world. He ultimately joins up with a rebel faction known as The Loners, a group founded on a complete rejection of romance. But once there David meets an enigmatic stranger who stirs up unexpected and strong feelings within him.”

Time for me to binge watch all the movies nominated for Oscars this year…well not all of them, but the ones that look interesting.

Before looking through the different noms, I’d never even heard of The Lobster.  I feel like a lot of the time those are the best ones because they haven’t been hyped up, but are still going to be that kind of movie that’s a little weird yet good.  Does that make sense?

Because this movie is weird.

I mean, come on, people get turned into animals if they don’t find the person they want to marry after staying in a hotel for a few weeks.  I’d love to know who came up with this idea and why!

The Lobster has a dry sense of comedy that is a little bit dark at times.  It embodies the feel of an independent movie, meaning do not watch this if you only like traditional storytelling.  It’s interesting because it’s almost like two movies put together.  The first half focuses on David at this hotel and the other main character isn’t introduced until the second half.

I started watching Black Mirror recently, and I’d say if you’re into that, you’ll definitely enjoy this movie.  Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Yes Please – Amy Poehler

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3.5/5 Stars

Summary: “In Amy Poehler’s highly anticipated first book, Yes Please, she offers up a big juicy stew of personal stories, funny bits on sex and love and friendship and parenthood and real life advice (some useful, some not so much), like when to be funny and when to be serious. Powered by Amy’s charming and hilarious, biting yet wise voice, Yes Please is a book full of words to live by.”

I kept forgetting to write my post on this book, so it’s actually been a while since I finished listening to it…oops.

I picked up Yes Please as something to listen to while at work instead of listening to the same songs over and over again.  It’s a good listen with chapters that will make you laugh out loud—even if you aren’t technically a fan of Amy Poehler.

There are chapters about her life, kids, relationships, and of course Parks and Rec and SNL.  I don’t think I would have actually sat down and read through the entire book, but as something to listen to casually I really enjoyed it.  There are little asides strictly in the audiobook and hearing it in her own voice makes it a little more interesting to someone who hasn’t really followed her career or know much about her, like me.

Pick up the book (audio or not) if you’re a fan of Parks and Rec or if you’ve just seen and liked the comedy movies Amy is known for.

Chewing Gum

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4.5/5 Stars

Summary: “The life of Tracey and the mishaps of her neighbourhood, friends and family. Oh, and obvs her boyfriend!”

This show!

I sat down and watched the entire first season in one sitting, which isn’t something I’d usually do.  Yes, there are only 8 half hour episodes, but still.  Chewing Gum (I don’t really get the name) is so funny and perfect I’m mad I didn’t watch it earlier.

Tracey is 24 years old and still has A LOT to learn about the world.  She’s trying to figure out the whole relationship thing while dealing with her very religious mother and sister.  It’s about life in your twenties if your life isn’t the kind that is typically shown on TV (ahem, me).

The jokes are great and will make you laugh out loud more than a few times.  I know season 2 just started to premiere over in the UK on E4.  I’m guessing it will appear on Netflix after the entire season airs.

Available on Netflix.