review

Movie Review: Opening Night

What would happen if Anthony Rapp‘s character from Rent grew up, sold out, and started teaching a high school drama class? Well, Opening Night would happen.  (more…)

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Movie Review: Good Kids

An indie coming-of-age movie, Good Kids follows four incredibly smart best friends as they spend the summer after graduation making up for all the fun they missed in high school, which basically amounts to drinking, drugs, and sex. A lot of it. (more…)

Movie Review: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

I finally got around to watching Birdman the other day, and I have very mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, the cinematography was beautiful, the acting was phenomenal, and it was all-around a well-made movie. The creativity and rigor that went into making it look like one continuous shot is definitely admirable, and it deserved most of the praise and awards it received.

On the other hand, the movie is self-important, pandering, and inexcusably pretentious.

Spoilers. (more…)

Movie Review: Pitch Perfect 3

I absolutely love the first two Pitch Perfect movies. I know they’re not quality cinematography or anything, but they’re cute, quirky, fun, and a whole host of other adjectives that make me love movies. Anna Kendrick is adorable, Skylar Astin is perfect, and the films are filled with off-beat humor and, of course, a cappella music.

Spoilers. (more…)

Book Review: Windfall

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What would you do if you won the lottery? When Alice buys her best friend Teddy a lottery ticket for his eighteenth birthday as a gag gift, they find out that against all odds, it was a winner. A millions and millions of dollars winner. But of course everything comes with a price, and luck isn’t always good luck. Will the money be too much for their friendship to weather?

Spoilers. (more…)

On Political Correctness, Plausibility, and Really Bad YA

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I started reading How to Keep Rolling After a Fall, but I’m not going to finish it. It was bad on so many levels. It was poorly written and not very interesting, and the characters were mediocre and unlikable at best. But, the worst of it all is that the premise of this book isn’t even remotely plausible. Here’s the synopsis from Goodreads: (more…)

Double Book Review: The Promise of Amazing and The Secrets of Attraction

Both of these YA novels by Robin Constantine feature some of the same characters, and I read them one right after the other, so I’m just going to review them together, The Promise of Amazing first.

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Wren Caswell is an academically and socially average girl getting over a breakup and working at her parents’ medieval-times-type restaurant. Grayson Barrett was a star athlete and top of his class—until he got kicked out of his prep school for pimping term papers. Their paths cross one night when Wren saves Grayson from choking at a wedding, and they can’t seem to stay away from each other since. But will both their pasts (and the threat of their futures) let them be who they want to be? (more…)

Book Review: Alex, Approximately

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Expert evader Bailey Rydell just moved across the country to live with her father in California. Her only consolation is her online best friend and fellow film buff, Alex, who not only serves as emotional support, but happens to live in the same coastal town she just moved to. Scared that he’s not all he seems online, she sets out to find him before telling him she’s there, instead meeting Porter Roth, a.k.a. her archnemesis. Porter works at the museum where she got a summer job, and makes her life miserable. He mocks her, argues with her… and makes her completely unable to concentrate on anything else. But as the summer unfolds, Bailey has to decide whether to keep chasing a potential online romance or to go with the one that’s right in front of her, in all his sarcastic, scarred glory. But Porter has a secret of his own: He’s Alex… approximately. (more…)

Book Review: The Geek’s Guide to Unrequited Love

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Graham is in love with his best friend, writing partner, and next-door-neighbor, Roxy. And a trip to New York Comic-Con is the perfect place to tell her. Or, at least, it would be if things didn’t keep going wrong for him. As reality continues to get in the way of his perfectly-planned-out fiction, Graham has to face the fact that life is never quite as perfect as we want it to be. (more…)

Book Review: How to Make Out

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How to Make Out is the story of Renley, a sixteen-year-old math geek with an incredibly hot, womanizing best friend, some serious daddy issues, a crush on some hot senior, and a need for thousands of dollars to go with the math club to New York City. So, she starts a blog to make the money, and typical YA emotions ensue.

Spoilers. (more…)