Talking Nerdy, Ep. 106: Covering the Galaxy with Nicole Sbaffoni

Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy has been out for almost a full week, and that means it has been plenty of time to launch a spoilercast full of all of our favorite bits from the film. Honestly, there’s no way this movie could possibly be “ruined” for you by anything we say, so have fun, sit back, and join the abridged Talking Nerdy crew with very special guest, singer/songwriter Nicole Sbaffoni!


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The Top Ten Best Films of 2010

2010 has been host to some
truly inspiring works of cinematic art. In a year of catastrophic
oil spills and Chilean miners trapped 2,300 ft underground, films
allow us to momentarily forget these instances outside the theatre,
letting us get sucked into the realities they create and raise a
smile or arouse a tear. Sure, 2010 hasn’t been the strongest of
years for moviemaking (don’t we say that every year?), but a select
few flicks are nothing other than superb examples of committed
. Without further ado, here are my ten
favourites. See these if you can.

10. “Rabbit Hole
— A true cry-a-thon if I ever saw one, “Rabbit
” stars Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart as two
parents who are in grieving. Their four-year-old son has been
killed in a car accident, a tragic event that changes them as
people and as a once-happy couple. The film is a melancholy one,
almost depressing, but the melodrama that surrounds it is
stacked-up on emotion that doesn’t seem forced or contrived. Kidman
near cries herself to dehydration for an
Oscar, and by golly she’s worthy of it. A bit
of a downer, but an effective piece of poignant filmmaking that
will make lips quiver and eyes fill with tears.

9. “Exit Through the Gift
” — The fact that
Exit Through the Gift Shop” might
possibly all be a hoax makes it all the more fascinating. A
documentary on a documentary, it follows shop keeper Thierry
Guetta, a quirky Frenchman who has a passion for filming every
aspect of his daily life. He doesn’t have any focus for the
mountains of tapes he’s collecting — that is, until he begins to
point the camera at local street artists. The footage (of which
there is many) has been hijacked and re-edited by British graffiti
icon and genius Banksy, the faceless artist Thierry ends up working
with. Unexpectedly hysterical, “Exit Through the Gift
” is a compelling exploration of not only the
world of art, but of a man who shows how easy it is to become what
some blindly consider a visionary. Real or fake, fact or prank,
it’s a bloody brilliant documentary/mockumentary that should
provoke some thought in your noggin.

8. “Black Swan
— Haunting and bizarre, Darren Aronofsky’s drama-horror and
psychological thriller shows how ambition can drive one totally
nuts. Natalie Portman is a ballerina who lands the role of The Swan
Queen in a New York production of “Swan Lake,” causing her to
obsessively rehearse and rehearse until her grip on reality begins
to loosen, with nightmarish hallucinations taunting her fragile
mind. Portman is astonishing in the lead role, and Aronofsky’s
direction is a visual jaw-dropper. Disturbing and bold, this will
linger and twirl in your defenceless brain for quite some time —
and not only for the lesbian sex scene.

7. “Let Me In” —
The only remake on the list, Matt Reeves’ “Let Me
” is based on the cult Swedish vampire horror “Let
the Right One In,” directed by Tomas Alfredson. Relocated to 1983
New Mexico, the American remake centres on a bullied boy, Owen, as
a blood-thirsty, yet innocent-looking girl, Abby, moves into the
apartment next door. She’s been 12 for a very long time,
apparently. The two bond over the course of the film as mismatched
friends, Owen blissfully unaware of Abby’s vampiric state. A creepy
aura surrounds every shiver-inspiring scene, the film as
unforgettably unsettling as the acclaimed original, making for a
chilling and remarkably enticing horror-drama.
Twilight” fans, take note.

6. “Scott Pilgrim vs. the
” — It’s rare that a film is as
zany or creative as “Scott Pilgrim vs. the
,” an adaptation of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s
six-volume cult comic book. Edgar Wright’s astoundingly energetic,
cartoonish hipster-comedy is set in a world in which the laws of
physics are similar to that of a video game — Nintendo
sound-effects, people exploding into coins, etc. The titular
character, played by a shaggy-haired Michael Cera, must battle the
seven evil exes of the girl of his dreams to win her over, leading
to some beautifully-shot action sequences, as well as a Bollywood
musical number. Brilliant, mesmerisingly inventive stuff that nerds
everywhere will gawk at in wonder.

5. “Toy Story 3
Pixar expectedly did it once again with the
third instalment of the celebrated toys-gone-wild franchise, mixing
deep-rooted nostalgia with colourful visuals to make for a
magnificent family film. This adorable adventure had our iconic
stuffed characters accidentally sent away to day care, where they
must try to escape from the once-comforting residents.
Fantastically comical, angelically animated, and eye-wateringly
sentimental, “Toy Story 3” is a
triumphant ending to the rightfully-idolised trilogy. Woody and
Buzz are still as awesome as ever.

4. “Four Lions
— This Brit-flick revolves around a group of wannabe radical
Muslim terrorists as they prepare to mercilessly suicide bomb the
London Marathon. Perfect subject matter for a comedy, then. Chris
Morris’ seemingly controversial, side-splittingly funny satire
balances hilarity with surprising tenderness as we watch our
utterly incompetent jihadists screw everything up for 97
titillating minutes, aiming bazookas the wrong way round and
accidentally blowing up sheep in grassy fields. Fuck mini baby

3. “Kick-Ass” —
Kick-Ass” can easily be described as
the filmic definition of the word
fun.” A hilariously sick-minded
satire of the superhero genre, Matthew Vaughn’s gorgeous comic book
action-comedy-thriller is a rare example of a popcorn
audience-pleaser at its very finest. Aaron Johnson stars as Dave
Lizewski, a young adult who dreams of one day becoming an
ass-kicking superhero, and so decides to take on crime as a
wetsuit-wearing vigilante named Kick-Ass. An awesome cast —
including a foul-mouthed, relentlessly violent 11-year-old girl —
makes for the best superhero feature of the year, with bullets
piercing through the air and blood spraying with no end in sight.
This is my kinda movie.

2. “Inception” —
Christopher Nolan, how I love thee. The “Memento” director proved
himself once again to be nothing short of a genius of the
filmmaking profession with his ambitious, original, and beautiful
Inception.” Following fugitive
Leonardo DiCaprio as he tries to get back to America to see his
kids, “Inception” takes place mainly
in the dream world as DiCaprio and his loyal team raid and
physically explore the mind of Cillian Murphy to plant an idea in
his subconscious. Innovative and intellectually stimulating,
Inception” is a blockbuster
masterpiece that never fails to amaze. I’ll have antigravity fight
scenes with a side of buildings folding in on themselves, and a
dash of Hans Zimmer’s breathtaking score, please. Extra epicness,

1. “The Social Network” — Easily taking the top, bright, golden prize for 2010, “The Social Network” is the kind of Oscar-baiting stuff that actually deserves the naked statuette. David Fincher’s stylised
drama tells the true story of the invention of relatively
well-known website Facebook, mixing in themes
of betrayal, loss, ambition, and power to the superbly intriguing
narrative. With an awe-inspiring, godly script by Aaron Sorkin that
has machine-gun characters mercilessly blasting bullets of sharply
scribed dialogue at each other, and top-notch performances from the
magnificent cast, “The Social Network
is a friend request you know you’ll accept. Stephen Watson likes
this, and you should, too.



OK, you cunts. Let’s see what you can do now…

It has become increasingly clear that the day of Batman and Robin is over. No longer will comic book inspired movies have an underlying need to appeal to the goofy broad base of children and popcorn shovelers.

Are there bad comic book adaptations? Absolutely–but KICK-ASS is not one of them.

KICK-ASS is set in a moderately realistic America where all of the superheroes we currently know of only exist in graphic form, and modern conveniences like YouTube play a significant role in society.

Another fit, attractive young British Actor taking our American jobs.

Perhaps I’m naive, but until this movie was announced, I had no idea it was a comic book that I will, at some point, force myself to read. Though a large chunk of the movie is devoted to brutal violence and a little girl cursing like a sailor, the film goes much deeper and darker than I had anticipated.

For those of you expecting a dumb anti-Superhero date-comedy, you might be pleasantly surprised. The film is very funny, yes, but it’s also thrilling, dramatic, and–well, fucking kick ass.

Where the film diverges from the original source material, it works on a cinematic level. Some elements were altered, but not necessarily for the sake of a “Hollywood ending.” Yes, the main character gets the girl in the film, and loses her in the book–but in the film, Hit-Girl has a slightly more tragic story…so, it’s give and take.

If you haven’t gathered this from the preview, KICK-ASS is the story of Dave, a total comic book pussy who every girl thinks is a fag. He decides to create an alternate reality wherein superheroes exist–and he is one of them. He gets mixed up in some mafia shit and teams up with some costume-wearing assassins, Hit-Girl and Big Daddy (played weirdly and neurotically by an Adam West impersonating Nicholas Cage)…and guess what: lots of people die.

The theater I attended to see KICK-ASS during the afternoon was–not surprisingly–practically empty.

…but then a woman entered with about 8 fucking little fucking kids, who proceeded to plant themselves directly in front of us. About 10 minutes into the film, they all got up and walked out of the theater as if to say, “We came to see a hard R-rated blood splattering revenge flick, not some actor masturbating to images of his teacher’s tits. We have been misled.”

KICK-ASS is getting a lot of shit because it’s “not a kids movie,” as if half of America is blissfully ignorant of the concept that young actors in a movie does not mean that movie is going to be High School fucking Musical 4. –I own the rights to that title, so nobody try to steal it. I’m looking at you, Wayans Brothers!

She'll be taking over for Chris Hansen soon enough.

It’s an adult movie with a lot of shit that adults like–sex, violence, and 11-year olds saying shit like: “OK, you cunts. Let’s see what you can do now.”

I was in love with this movie…and as soon as I left the theater I wanted to see it again. Take that, Avatar…I bet right now James Cameron is swimming in his lake of money, emotionally distressed by the idea that I thought his movie was pretty gay.

KICK-ASS ftw. See it…then see Death at a Funeral or something, because that might be pretty funny, too. What do I know?

Alex G/

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