Batman Concludes with The Dark Knight Rises

Seven years ago, there was a spike in the pop-cultural “cool” factor of enjoying the Batman. With the release of Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins, those put off by the silliness and absurdity often associated with comic-book narratives were enraptured by the film’s far more grounded take on the Caped Crusader. When the much anticipated follow-up, The Dark Knight, was released in 2008, that “cool” factor increased tenfold, as did the amount of Joker cosplayers. Four years and far too many “Why so serious”es later, has Nolan delivered a fitting conclusion to his beloved series, or does the trilogy crash and burn in the home stretch?

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Marvel’s “The Avengers” Team Up to Take Your Money

In 2008, Marvel Studios released the first of many film adaptations of their own comic book properties. With “Iron Man,” the legendary publisher took great care in making sure the summer blockbuster did the source material justice, and succeeded with flying colors (red and gold, primarily). Those who stayed after the credits were treated to a short scene showcasing Samuel L. Jackson as a mysterious man with an eye patch saying something about an “Avengers Initiative.” With that moment, comic fans everywhere collectively shit a massive brick made of tremendous excitement and towering expectations. Four years later, Marvel Studios has delivered on their promise of an Avengers film. Was it even remotely possible for them to meet the staggering expectations of their fans? Find out after the break!

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Netflix Pick: “Submarine” comes of age

I’m one of those people that finds it very difficult to resist the draw of a good coming-of-age story. Something about tales of young people discovering who they are and what it’s like to be a part of the “real world” really gets to me, particularly if they’re presented with style and a unique voice. Therefore, I was very excited when I heard the rumblings of a great one making the rounds at film festivals a year or so ago. That film was “Submarine,” and it’s now available on Netflix Instant Streaming, allowing me to finally check it out for myself. If you’re wondering how much I loved this movie, read all about it after the break!

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Recap & Reactions: Mad Men reads your “Tea Leaves”

On a night of exciting season premieres (Game of Thrones, The Killing), I’ve decided to keep my focus trained on the continuing efforts of AMC’s period epic, Mad Men. Earlier tonight, we were treated to the fifth season’s sophomore episode, “Tea Leaves.” While it may not be clear exactly where this season is headed just yet, there are definite traces of the series’ characteristic slow burn. Check out my spoiler-filled thoughts and comment with your own after the break!

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Netflix Pick: “Shut Up Little Man!” will invade your privacy

After a couple of weeks off due to complete, inescapable entrenchment in following the Mass Effect 3 controversy, my weekly Netflix Pick feature HAS RETURNED! I know, I know… You were all just stuck having absolutely nothing to watch because you are unable to decide for yourselves, and for that I apologize. I, myself, had a bit of trouble deciding what to watch this week, so I deferred to the “Top 10 for Darren” section of my PS3 Netflix interface. Of the recommended titles, I was most intrigued by an odd-sounding documentary entitled “Shut Up Little Man!” Was Netflix right to have the audacity to recommend this film to my discerning tastes? FINDOUTAFTERTHEBREAK!

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Recap & Reactions: Mad Men returns with “A Little Kiss”

I recently took the time to catch up on Mad Men, AMC’s critical and populous smash hit, by watching all four previous seasons on Netflix Instant Watch. Luckily, I managed to do so in time for the series’ eagerly anticipated return earlier tonight. We here at Wrecked have been wanting to branch out, content-wise, so I’ve decided to take advantage of Mad Men‘s heated, two hour re-entry into the pop culture atmosphere and start a series of episode reaction articles. Safe to say, spoilers and personal opinions after the break.

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Take Back Earth (and, like, the rest of the galaxy) in Mass Effect 3

FemShep doesn't get nearly enough play. SHE'S JUST AS BADASS, Y'ALL.

In 2007, Bioware and Microsoft Studios introduced the world to the sprawling science-fiction universe of Mass Effect, a vast, story-driven action/RPG. In 2010, Bioware brought us the much anticipated sequel with the aid of publishing behemoth Electronic Arts. Mass Effect 2 was a much leaner, more action-focused experience, stripping out many of the dense RPG mechanics in favor of streamlining the cover-based action mechanics. The constant in the Mass Effect series, however, has always been a notable attention to detail in the story, lore, and character; something Bioware has been known for as a studio for quite some time. Just this past week, Bioware and EA released the final game in their epic space-faring action/RPG trilogy, Mass Effect 3. Does it go out in a blaze of glory, or retreat disappointingly into the darkness?

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Netflix Pick: “I Think We’re Alone Now” is Sadly Fascinating

This week’s Netflix Pick is oddly similar to last week’s in a few ways. Most notably, it’s a story about two troubled people from very different backgrounds finding friendship by bonding over mutual interests. Unlike “Mary and Max,” however, this film is a documentary. It follows a couple of people very much obsessed with 80’s pop star Tiffany. Why? You’ll just have to watch the film to find out. See if it’s worth your time after the break!

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Netflix Pick: “Mary and Max” Will Break Your Damn Heart

If there’s any place better known for availability of quirky independent films than the eclectic library of titles available on Netflix’s instant streaming service, it’s the Sundance Film Festival. Held annually in Park City, Utah, the festival is the premier location for a wide and varied selection of independent films. In 2009, the festival opened with a strange, Australian stop-motion film called “Mary and Max.” Often, the opening film is not one of the strongest of the festival, but I remembered hearing how surprisingly fantastic this one managed to be. Did this weird little film deserve such praise? Find out after the break! Read more of this post

Netflix Pick: UHF Will Rot Your Brain

This week, I crossed a movie off of my comedy nerd list of shame. I was aware of the cult following of “Weird Al” Yankovic’s absurdist sketch film, “UHF,” and I’d been a fan of his parody songs since I was a kid. For some reason, however, I’d just never gotten around to seeing the movie. Thanks to Netflix, I was recently able to right that wrong.

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Netflix Pick: Pontypool

As you are probably aware, today is not just any Tuesday. Today is Valentine’s Day. I could very easily have found some sappy, romantic, love-conquers-all drama or inane rom-com, but that wouldn’t be very Wrecked. Instead, my weekly Netflix Pick is an exercise in counter-programming. How about a movie that simply takes place on Valentine’s Day, but in place of cards, chocolates, and kissing in the rain is a small-town zombie outbreak? Got your attention? Read on after the jump.

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Chronicle OR: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Telekinesis

Though the style may be running rampant recently, I must admit that I am a fan of the “found footage” gimmick. Something about the whole let’s-all-pretend-just-for-like-an-hour-and-a-half-that-this-is-actually-happening shtick makes for some creative (if contrived) uses of camera and sound that often have the effect of making the ridiculous seem tangible. With the debatable exception of “Cloverfield,” most found footage films thus far have been of the horror persuasion. “Chronicle,” the latest release to utilize the style, is more of a high-school-set action/dramedy. Is this where found footage films jump the proverbial shark, or does this gimmicky style still have some battery life left in its camera?

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Netflix Pick: 13 Assassins

I’m about to admit something that may lose me a few points of modern film geek cred… I have never seen a film by Takashi Miike. Everything I’ve heard about “Audition” and “Ichi the Killer” has caused me a bit of hesitation on account of the modicum of squeamishness that still sits within my hardened, grown-up sensibilities. The descriptions of Miike’s “13 Assassins” seemed free of such warnings for the weak of stomach, so I figured that its addition to the Netflix catalog was the perfect opportunity to right that wrong. Read more of this post

Netflix Pick: Happythankyoumoreplease

If there’s one thing I love about Netflix Instant Watch, it’s the abundance of independent films from promising first time writer/directors. This week’s pick is a notable indie dramedy that fits comfortably in that category, seeing as it is the debut feature from Josh Radnor. If that name sounds familiar, then you may be a fan of the beloved sitcom “How I Met Your Mother,” in which Radnor plays serially romantic protagonist, Ted Mosby [if you’re not a fan yet, “HIMYM” is also available on Netflix (hint, hint)]. How does he fare as a writer/director? Find out after the break!

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Netflix Pick: The Perfect Host

This week’s Netflix Pick is a movie I’ve been dancing around checking out for a while now. I remember hearing tell of a strange, twisty thriller starring David Hyde Pierce making the film festival rounds a couple of years ago, which piqued my interest for a variety of reasons. I noticed a few months back that it had been added to the illustrious Netflix instant watch catalog, and was flirting with idea of checking it out, despite the mixed reviews I’d seen. For the purposes of my little weekly feature, I decided to finally take the jump. Is “The Perfect Host” worth your hour and a half? Find out after the break!

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Netflix Pick: The Vicious Kind

FYI: This is not the poster Netflix uses. It is infinitely better than the image they chose, as are all other posters I found for this film.

Just in case you were worried that I would forget about my promise to keep this up as a weekly feature, I’m here to PROVE YOU WRONG. There’s an absolute wealth of great content available on Netflix instant streaming, a great deal of which most people have probably never heard of. There’s nothing I love doing quite as much as showing people fantastic films they didn’t even know existed, and that goes double for myself. Therefore, this feature will essentially be a chronicling of my journey through the wilds of Netflix’s library, watching a new film every week and letting you know whether or not it’s worth your time. Luckily, “The Vicious Kind” is absolutely worth your time. Find out why after the break!

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Netflix Pick: Tucker and Dale vs. Evil

Given the rampant availability of devices that are able to stream the vast library of titles offered by Netflix instant streaming,   I thought that providing recommendations of said titles on a somewhat-regular basis might be a useful feature on the site. After all, there are SO many great gems on the service that a lot of people might easily overlook, especially given the relative shittiness of many of the title browsing interfaces on certain platforms (mine being PS3). To get this feature started, I bring to your attention the wonderfully slapstick horror-comedy “Tucker and Dale Vs. Evil.”

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The Adventures of Tintin

I can quite honestly say that I would not be as enthusiastic about the medium of film as I am today without the films of Steven Spielberg. Specifically, that enthusiasm would be nonexistent without the Indiana Jones trilogy (that’s right, TRILOGY). I can remember seeing “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” for the first time as if it was yesterday (yes, I saw them out of order, don’t judge me). Even on a crappy VHS on a small TV, I was swept up in the globe-trotting, treasure-hunting adventures of Dr. Jones and his affable gang of companions. Recently, Spielberg gave us a return to that kind of film with “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” but the results were lacking in a certain je-ne-sais-quoi. Actually, je sais precisely quoi; it was lacking in heart and character and quality setpieces and any appearance of genuine giving-a-shit. Thankfully, Spielberg has been given a second chance at producing that brand of cinematic adventuring (this time sans the confused mind of a 2012-fearing George Lucas) with the animated motion-capture spectacle “The Adventures of Tintin.” Was Spielberg able to find redemption this time around? The answer is a surprising “Pretty much, yeah.”

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Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

He can tell EXACTLY what you had for breakfast this morning.

It’s nearing Christmas, which apparently means studios are required to release ALL THE MOVIES right fucking now. It’s a winter season full of rollicking action/adventure romps, dour oscar-bait, and family-friendly crowd pleasers. With so many choices available to you during your holiday break, you may be wondering if “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows,” the sequel to the 2009 hit “Sherlock Holmes,” is worth your hard-earned coin. Does it provide more exciting mystery and slow-motion fisticuffs? Is Victorian London still grey as a shark’s backside? Do Sherlock and Watson just SHUT UP AND KISS ALREADY? The answers to these questions after the break!

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