December 20, 2006


If you ask me, Christmas has come early at FFC, as this past week has truly been one of our finest in recent memory. In case you missed any of these, allow me to draw your attention to Travis' Revolutionary twofer comparing La Commune and 1900 as well as the final instalment in his series of Gary Cooper reviews, Sergeant York. Meanwhile, Walter says Dreamgirls is something of a nightmare and newcomer Ian gives the old Yuletide smackdown to Ron Underwood's live-action version of The Year Without a Santa Claus.

This Friday may be light on theatrical reviews as Walter recuperates from a minor but no less incapacitating injury.

December 10, 2006

Something About Inmates and the Asylum

Hello fellow Film Freaks:

If you've been reading this blog for long, then maybe you know me as the anonymous "ian" fellow who's always posting responses to the missives that appear here, usually a dashed-off paragraph or a humorous shot in the dark at the latest screencap contest. However, contrary to popular belief, I do actually have a last name and, what's more, write professional criticism; I've been peddling my wares to various publications lately, and as you may have already guessed, I've landed what amounts to a real dream gig. So with great excitement, I'd like to introduce myself: I'm Ian Pugh, and I'm the newest staffer here at FILM FREAK CENTRAL.

Never fear, I'm not going to be the Dick Sargent to anyone's Dick York around here in any way, shape or form, but I will be specializing in TV on DVD. Finally, an opportunity to fully delve into the pleasures and pains of the boob tube without having to live by the networks' clock. Suffice it to say that this means fewer commercials that try to call Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest the "film of the decade," or try to pass off an Air Bud sequel by way of Look Who's Talking as anything less than goddamn terrifying. At the very least, I'll be armed with a "skip" button. Wonderful invention, this "dee-vee-dee."

My deepest thanks go to Bill, Walter, Travis and Alex in allowing a relative greenhorn like me to join their ranks. After leaving comments here for so long, I feel a little like Mark Wahlberg in Pittsburgh epic Rock Star... or maybe its Philadelphia counterpart, Invincible. (Memo to Marky Mark: I'm onto your diabolical plan to control Pennsylvania's inspirational film market.)

For those interested seeking out more of my critical work beyond the blog comments, check out my biweekly article "What's at the Movies" at The River Reporter of Narrowsburg, NY (this week it's Deja Vu) or The Triangle, the student newspaper of my collegiate alma mater, for which I still write the occasional review of a theatrical release. A brief cross-section from the past few months: Death of a President, Poseidon, Open Season, The Queen.

But my love affair with television is a lifelong one, and to tackle it head-on like this will be a fascinating endeavor. I look forward to trading barbs and ideas with all of you good folks here at the blog, who have been immeasurably helpful in my critical escapades. Look for my first FFC article soon.

But until then, let's open the floor for a somewhat generic question: with much of the water-cooler fare on holiday hiatus, what has everyone been watching on the old idiot box lately?

Update - 12/13/06
Feel the sting of The Monarch with my review of The Venture Bros.: Season One. Meanwhile, Walter documents the slow, painful decay of Anglo-American relations in The Holiday. In case you missed them: Bill checks the specs on the Little Miss Sunshine DVD, and Travis continues his Gary Cooper odyssey while tackling oddly-named DVD collections with The Taking of Porky's 1 2 3.

Update - 12/15/06
Walter takes on a weekend of movies that went without a spell checker with Eragon and The Pursuit of Happyness.

R.I.P. Peter Boyle -- for as many great moments you could find in the man's career, my personal favorite is a throwaway from Taxi Driver: his weary salutation, "Char-lie T..."

And despite the news reports, the Golden Globe nominations fail to surprise anyone.

December 08, 2006

Lindsay Lohan: Auteur

Nudge, nudge, wink, wink.