Saga of the Leftovers

How do we deal with the fragility of life? How do we cope with lost love and lost family? How do we contend with the forces of nature, the forces of mortality? It took some patience, and some diligence, but I powered through the first season of HBO’s _The Leftovers_ through all the perceptively melancholy, depressing episodes to get here: season 2. 

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The Time I Decided to See a Movie Without Watching Its Trailer

I was three hours from wrapping up a ridiculously long week of work, adjusting my posture in the seat of my chair, when I really started feeling like seeing a movie after shutting off the computer and saying “fuck it” to a dozen outstanding to-dos. My girlfriend was working the evening shift, so the gameplan was to tell her I was seeing either one of two movies out of the sorry-ass selection in theaters this month, and that — I hoped — neither one would be too extraordinary so as not to ruin the notion that we only see good movies together. (I already biffed on this last year when I saw both *Birdman* and *Boyhood* without her.)

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All You Need is Edge of Tomorrow

Leaving a movie theater thoroughly entertained is usually rare. Or perhaps my opinionated tendencies have gotten the best of me. I’ve been let down more than often than not over the past few years, and it has cost me far too many buttered popcorn bowls. I can happily say, however, that 2014 hit the mark on several occasions, and most notably with Edge of Tomorrow, a film that was unfortunately marred by horrible marketing and tragic failure at the domestic box office. But Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt’s sci-fi foray joins the ranks of other hugely enjoyable, critically- and fan-loved vehicles that fell short only in making money in theaters. You could lump in there such flicks as the recent Dredd 3D and canonized classics like The Shawshank Redemption and Blade Runner. Yes, that’s good company — and rightfully so.

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Jodorowsky's Dune - A Documentary on Artistry

When I originally saw the pre-release poster for the documentary Jodorowsky's Dune on a February visit to the Music Box theater in Chicago, I was excited. The prominant visual -- a colorful, wildly insectoid starship design -- immediately captured my interest. The subject matter, paired with a director with whom I've only once been aquainted via Holy Mountain, intrigued me all the more. I didn't even know anyone else had attempted to bring Dune to the big screen, let alone failed. I made a note to see the film in theaters, but alas, didn't get around to seeing it until a few days ago. But even several months post-release, the film satisfied most of my appetite for what it had teased earlier this year.

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