Margaret (2011)

Margaret
Director: Kenneth Lonergan
Writer: Kenneth Lonergan
Cast: Anna Paquin, J. Smith-Cameron, Jeannie Berlin, Mark Ruffalo, Matt Damon, Jean Reno, Allison Janney, Kieran Culkin, Rosemarie DeWitt, Matthew Broderick, Olivia Thirlby, Matt Bush, Michael Ealy
Part of: Viennale

Plot:
Lisa (Anna Paquin) is a normal teenager until the day she co-causes a bus accident by distracting the driver (Mark Ruffalo). The bus hits and kills Monica (Allison Janney), leaving Lisa distraught and unsettled. Unable to find another outlet for her feelings of guilt, she gets on a crusade to get recompensation for Monica’s death, while everything around her keeps spiraling out of control.

Margaret is 2 1/2 hours long and you get to feel every minute of it.* It’s 2 1/2 hours of an hysteric teenager and emotionally incompetent adults, a combination that is at the same time boring and nerve-wrecking. What it isn’t, is enjoyable.

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Piranha 3DD (2012)

Piranha 3DD
Director: John Gulager
Writer: Patrick Melton, Marcus Dunstan, Joel Soisson
Sequel to: Piranha
Cast: Danielle Panabaker, Matt Bush, Katrina Bowden, Jean-Luc Bilodeau, Chris Zylka, Paul James Jordan, Meagan Tandy, David Koechner, Christopher Lloyd, Ving Rhames, Gary Busey, David Hasselhoff
Part of: /slash Filmfestival

Plot:
After the death of her mother, Maddy (Danielle Panabaker) and her stepdad Chet (David Koechner) inherited the family’s waterpark. Unfortunately for Maddy, Chet owns 51% and has very specific plans for the park (they mostly include boobs and parties). But right before the opening, with star guest David Hasselhoff (David Hasselhoff), Maddy’s friend is attacked by piranhas in a nearby lake. Maddy worries that the fish will find their way into the park. But nobody takes her seriously.

By no means is Piranha 3DD a good film. But watching it during a film festival in a sold out cinema that greeted you with David Hasselhoff songs to get you in the mood and with a cup of vodka, graciously given by a fellow festival-goer, in hand, it was an absolutely glorious experience.

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Adventureland (2009)

Adventureland is Greg Mottola‘s latest film, starring Jesse Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart, Bill Hader, Martin Starr, Matt Bush and Ryan Reynolds*.

Plot:
1987. James (Jesse Eisenberg) has is life planned out: First, a trip to Europe with his best friend. Then university and becoming a journalist. Unfortunately that’s when his dad gets “transferred” and has suddenly less money. Which means that James not only can’t go to Europe but has to work to make to university at all. And since he has no work experience whatsoever, he ends up at Adventureland, a rather run-down amusement park where he meets not only new friends like Joel (Martin Starr), but also a new love in Em (Kristen Stewart).

Since I’m often disappointed with Indie comedies, I didn’t expect much from Adventureland. But it was actually extremely sweet, funny and (least surprising) very well-acted. The script was wonderful and the movie is definitely a keeper.

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High School (2010)

[Viennale.]

High School is John Stalberg‘s first film, starring Matt Bush, Sean Marquette, Michael Chiklis, Colin Hanks and Adrien Brody.

Plot:
Henry (Matt Bush) is on the best way to finish High School as the valedictorian, when the spelling bee champion on his school gets stoned before the championship and triggers an anti-drug campaign led by the principal (Michael Chiklis): He wants compulsory drug tests for all the students. Usually that wouldn’t be a problem for Henry, but just the day before the principal announces this, Henry gets together with his old friend Travis (Sean Marquette) [who has the wonderful last name Breaux] and smokes his first joint. Out of desperation, Travis and Henry hatch the plan to drug the whole school. For that, they only have to steal from the drug dealer Psycho Ed (Adrien Brody). Who’s called Psycho for very good reasons.

I’m usually not so much for stoner movies, but Adrien Brody pulled me into this one – and it was actually really entertaining. The story is really predictable, but it had some very nice touches and good jokes.

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