If you want the gravy…

…You've got to get the biscuits!


Boylan Heritage Ginger Review

I’m quite familiar with Boylan’s soda, but I’m not entirely sure what this drink is. I would assume some type of ginger ale or beer, but who can say…taste untasted? (I guess “sight unseen” doesn’t really translate to the other senses.)

Cracking it open, I’m getting a sharp, ginger beery smell.

The first taste is a bit harsh–almost medicinal, like it might have fermented. It hasn’t, but it’s definitely not fitting comfortably into the ale or beer categories. It’s got a crispness, but that comes mostly in the aftertaste–up front, it’s very subtle, bordering on the bitter.

So far, I’m not overly impressed, but a look at the label suggests it was created more as a mixer than a standalone drink. So fair enough: let’s mix it with something!

I’ll go with Hochstadter’s Slow & Low whiskey. A very fine drink, especially for the price (around $20 a bottle).

Unfortunately, I seem to have screwed up the ratios, as I can barely taste the ginger for the whiskey.

It looks like it’s separated into two layers. No idea what that’s about.

Maybe this wasn’t a good choice of liquor. I’m not sure what would’ve been, but this isn’t working for me. And I don’t want to get drunk, so I’m not going to finish it.

Unless you know what to do with it, Boylan’s Heritage Ginger is not strongly recommended.


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Season’s Greetings from the Gravy!

I was hoping to have my Force Awakens review ready for you today, but it’ll probably have to wait until Saturday or Sunday. I want to make it a good one.

Just a few thoughts and notes to tide you over:

  • I saw The Big Short and The Good Dinosaur yesterday. The former was very, very good (on the cusp between ***½ and ****), but I want to give it a second viewing to be sure. The latter, however, has to be one of Pixar’s weakest films to date, and it only manages a low *** from me. Gorgeous animation, mediocre story.
  • I’m seeing Carol today. High hopes for that. Might put that review out for Monday. (Might just hit you guys with Carol and Star Wars at about the same time. We’ll see.)
  • Monday I’m seeing The Hateful Eight (in 70mm!!!). I’ll be getting a review of that out as soon as possible.
  • Joy (ugh), Concussion, The Danish Girl (UGH), and Youth will all be showing near me starting tomorrow. I’ll try to see and review all of them, though most of them will end up in a package review.
  • I swear I’ll get around to Hard to Be a God one of these days.
  • Sobering note: as of this moment I’ve seen 69 films for 2015, and have only 5 **** films. I might not even break 10 this year. I don’t know how much of it is me and how much of it is the cinema, but this has been an odd year. I’ll get into this more when I do my Top 20/Bottom 10 list.
  • Parting note: Home Alone 2: Lost in New York is better than Home Alone. I’ve seen each enough times (I couldn’t even begin to count how many) to say.


SPOTLIGHT Review – ***½

Spotlight poster

“It could’ve been me, it could’ve been you, it could’ve been any of us.” (Source)

Spotlight is the kind of film I would probably review as part of a 8- or 10-review package, but for the fact that, as it stands now, it’s a solid front-runner for Best Picture and the overwhelming front-runner for Best Original Screenplay. And for that, I need to discuss it in greater detail. Because I don’t totally agree with or even understand its status as such.

Now, this isn’t a case like Argo. This doesn’t fall laughably short of Best Picture status. I saw it a second time, in order to gain a more objective opinion of it, and I must say–it is a pretty good film. But a masterpiece it is not.

It’s good history. It’s not great drama.

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AFI Top 10 List: 2015

Big Short poster

First I was dreading it. Then I was curious about it. Now I’m looking forward to it. How often does that happen? (Source)

The American Film Institute announced their Top 10 list today. They delayed the announcement so the members would be able to factor in Star Wars, and…you’ll see how that panned out.

I’m gonna go over the list and consider what each film’s Oscar chances are at the moment. Although this is still one of the more open races I’ve seen in a while, something like a consensus is beginning to form. I’ll get into that at a later date, but first, the list:

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Proper Soda Co. Hibiscus Soda Review

Let me start by apologizing for not having put out more content lately. I’ve been increasingly busy with work (at a movie theater, no less!), and with awards season heating up I’ve been more focused on that than on the comparatively grueling process of writing reviews (and I feel like my recent reviews, Chi-Raq especially, have not been my best work). I will endeavor to get a review of Spotlight out before The Force Awakens opens and wipes out my free time for a week or so.

In the meantime, I’ve got some brand new sodas on hand, the day off, and I haven’t done one of these reviews in ages, so let’s get to it!

My last experience with Proper Soda Co. was interesting enough, and the prospect of a soda flavor I’ve never so much as seen before has me intrigued. I have no idea what hibiscus tastes like, and I haven’t smelt one recently enough to remember the odor. So we’re going in blind.

Which is just fine by me.

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Golden Globes Nominations: 2015

George Miller

Look at this dapper son-of-a-bitch. (Source)

I told ’em.

I fuckin’ told ’em!

You can’t keep a great film down.

You just can’t.

And they didn’t.

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Screen Actors Guild Nominations: 2015

Trumbo poster

A stronger showing than anyone could’ve expected.

SAG announced their nominations today.

Historically, the film that wins Best Ensemble here has to be considered the Best Picture frontrunner. Looking at that category, it seems pretty likely.

But as far as the individual acting categories are concerned…things can get strange. Sometimes SAG nominates actors who seemed primed for an Oscar nod and failed to connect (Oprah in The Butler, for one), and other times they nominate someone seemingly out of the blue (Naomi Watts in St. Vincent, Nicole Kidman in The Paperboy).

I can’t speak about the former, but the latter is surely on display today.

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