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Articles written by D.k. Holm


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  • What's On: Those Upsetting Oscars

    D.K. Holm, For the Courier|Mar 7, 2018

    Statistically or numerically, not that many people care about the Oscars. Only about 26 million people – worldwide – viewed this year’s award “ceremony,” which aired last Sunday night, March 4. And why should anyone watch it? People in the heartland have too many serious things to think about, plan, and do each day. If they even bother to see a movie, the motivating forces must override the hardships of getting real work done. People in the cities, too, are really only tangentially aware of cinema, what with the alternative distracti...

  • Thanksgiving Movies

    D.K. Holm, In Defense of Criticism|Nov 22, 2017

    Thanksgiving is not a time for movies. It’s a day for football. And eating. Lots of eating. And getting together with family and friends, and then maybe watching some kind of variety show on the tube late at night. Yet the few Thanksgiving movies that exist actually tell more about the reality of the holiday than you’d expect. Probably the signature Thanksgiving movie of the small group of them made is Jodie Foster’s Home for the Holidays. It’s another entry in that turgid American tradition of the contrived family get-together, most often s...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, GCCL, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Mar 2, 2016

    Valley Cinemas is holding over the unstoppable Deadpool and adding Zootopia, an unexpected animated feature from Walt Disney.The latter film represents a real break from the conventional animated offering, which usually concerns itself with cute animals taking a trip to rescue one of their own or save their habitat. Zootopia is a film noir mystery disguised as a cartoon. In that way it slightly resembles Who Framed Roger Rabbit, but here the whole city is anthropomorphized. The story concerns as...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, GCCL, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Feb 24, 2016

    Two new offerings make their debut at the Valley Cinemas this week. Zoolander No. 2 is a film that didn’t need to exist – except for once existing already previously in 2001 when the first film came out. That satire on the fashion industry was so popular on video that many years later carrying on with the characters seemed like a profitable idea. As heavily promoted in the media as Deadpool, Zoolander No. 2 is silly and a whole lot dumber, and not just because the two male models at the center of the contrived and barely comprehensible tal...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Feb 3, 2016

    The third Kung Fu Panda prevails at Valley Cinemas this week, with the theater adding Sisters. This is a Tina Fey and Amy Pohler comedy that flips the usual expectation that Ms Pohler would be the messy, drunken, white trash sister, with Ms Fey playing as usual the uptight square. Its slim premise has the two sisters in Florida dealing with their childhood home, which their aging parents (James Brolin, Dianne Wiest) are selling off. A house party ensues, among other tedious things. The large cast is padded out with Saturday Night Live staffers...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Jan 27, 2016

    This week the Valley Cinemas carries on with The 5th Wave and adds the family friendly Kung Fu Panda 3 to the mix. Panda has received glowing reviews, and the previous two films were successful as funny and touching and also tolerable to parents chaperoning their kids. The 5th Wave, meanwhile, is the latest teen dystopian multi-part narrative based on a popular YA series. What's unusual about this first entry, however, is that it tells the story of the alien invasion from the day before. Cassie...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For the Courier|Jan 20, 2016

    This week, Valley Cinemas is holding over the already-award-winning misery-fest The Revenant. When one resides in a town with a single movie theater, it can be hard to pass on a feature that garners as much praise as director Alejandero Gonzalez Inarritu's film has thus far. But be warned: It's pretty rough stuff, and the rough stuff isn't much fun. Being added to the mix is The 5th Wave, a dystopian, world-in-the-balance film for the teenage set directed by J. Blakeson. The Worx, the local vide...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For the Courier|Jan 13, 2016

    This week, Valley Cinemas holds over The Revenant, the Alejandro González Iñárritu's survival tale about Hugh Glass, the region's trapper scout in the early 1800s. The film has been validated by a Golden Globes win for the film, the director, and lead actor Leonardo DiCaprio. The film is joined by the new animated sequel, Alvin and the Chipmunks: Road Chip, in which the 'munks conspire to come between their manager Dave (TV's Jason Lee), and his girlfriend. If you liked the novelty songs from 19...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For the Courier|Jan 6, 2016

    It's still a Star Wars New Year at Valley Cinemas, as Star Wars: The Force Awakens stays on for a fourth almost unprecedented week. It's joined by The Revenant, Oscar-winner Alejandro González Iñárritu's film about Hugh Glass, the historical figure who scouted for trappers in Montana and thereabouts in the early 1800s. For the past few seasons and for the foreseeable future, we've been surrounded by remakes and reboots. That man from U.N.C.L.E., James Bond, the Mission Impossible team. The Ha...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For the Courier|Dec 30, 2015

    It's a Star Wars New Year at Valley Cinemas. Star Wars: The Force Awakens stays on for a third week. It continues to be paired with the lame comedy Daddy's Home, this month's Will Ferrell enterprise. That's probably because there is no other "product," as theater operators sometimes call movies. But the New Year will bring good tidings as well. Coming up as possible VC candidates are The Revenant, the survival western partially set in Montana. The film stars Leonardo DiCaprio as the real life...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For the Courier|Dec 16, 2015

    Star Wars is – are? – coming to Glasgow. The long anticipated new Star Wars film, seventh in the series, and two years in the making, cost Disney a mere $4 billion – that's what they paid creator George Lucas to step away and take Jar-Jar Binks with him. Star Wars: The Force Awakens makes its debut at Valley Cinemas this Friday. So what does a professional movie reviewer do the weekend before a new Star Wars appears? Watch the previous six in order, of course. This reviewer chose to watch the L...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For the Courier|Dec 9, 2015

    The Good Dinosaur proves that it is indeed easy being green, as it's held over for another week at Valley Cinemas. Joining that film is the latest iteration of the Rocky franchise, unofficial as it may be: Creed, in which an aging Rocky Balboa trains the illegitimate son of his old foe, Apollo. It's one of the best films of the year, especially once Sylvester Stallone as Rocky appears about 15 minutes in. Before that, the viewer is given the life story and psychological profile of Adonis Creed (...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For the Courier|Dec 2, 2015

    Valley Cinemas is holding over its two popular films, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 and the kids-oriented The Good Dinosaur. So if you've already got these two works under your belt, it's time to hit the small screen. First, try the Glasgow City-County Library (408 Third Ave S, 228-2731). There you'll find the second season of Elementary. When did America suddenly become so Sherlock Holmes crazy? We watch the wittily modernized BBC show with Benedict Cumberbatch, and the athletic m...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For the Courier|Nov 25, 2015

    Valley Cinemas is holding over one film – The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 and adding a new feature, this week the kids-oriented The Good Dinosaur. With its 16 animated feature Pixar has returned to a familiar well, the story of a friendship between man and animal, or at least boy and dinosaur, who, with bravery and self-esteem issues finds himself washed away on a river and must – guess what? – struggle to get back home. The Good Dinosaur is one of those reassuring, platitude-filled family stories disguised as a cartoon in which a centr...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Nov 11, 2015

    This week, Valley Cinemas is holding over its two films from last week. A good entry in the James Bond series, Spectre shows signs that the filmmakers thought the long-running franchise was getting to resemble the Bourne movies and so have retooled Bond to hark back to the glory days of Sean Connery, with the result that new film resembles Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, as others have pointed out. The dimensional CGI of The Peanuts Movie takes some getting used to, but once that’s accomplished the film is in the tradition of the daily comi...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Nov 4, 2015

    Valley Cinemas is offering two films this week, Spectre and The Peanuts Movie. One of the interesting phenomena surrounding the James Bond movies is that viewers, or at least one viewer, have the feeling that they had just seen one a few months ago. Now the latest Bond film, Spectre, is here and it comes as something of a surprise that its predecessor, Skyfall, was released way back in 2012, during the last Olympics and when there was a Queen Jubilee, Arab Spring, a Mars rover, and Argo was the best picture ever made. Like Beatles songs,...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, The Worx

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Oct 28, 2015

    Among the films leaving Netflix in November are, unsurprisingly, some Halloween related items, such as the first Scream, still an effective slasher film, especially if you don't know the plot, and the first five Saws, if you are a student of incredibly complicated horror mythology. For those interested in the trials and tribulations of the young, there is the Stephen King adaptation Stand by Me, and the inspirational college football tale, Rudy. For fans of chaos, there is the Saturday Night...

  • Film Review: The Visit

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Oct 21, 2015

    Most horror films entail someone going somewhere hazardous where they are scared (The Fall of the House of Usher, The Haunting), or settled people visited by the unholy (Poltergeist, The Exorcist). The Visit blends the two things in a tale of two kids sent to spend a season with their grandparents. The oldest is Becca (Olivia DeJonge), a budding filmmaker who is chronicling the visit in the manner of other movies produced by the filmmakers of "found footage" films such as Paranormal Activity....

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, the Worx

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Oct 21, 2015

    Valley Cinemas is introducing two films this week, The Visit (see review), and Jem and the Holograms, an adaptation of an ‘80s cartoon series about a Hasbro doll who runs a record studio and fronts a pop band. Adventures ensue. Meanwhile, if you snoop around long enough online for freebies, you are bound to find a lot of free movies available for streaming on the Internet … I won’t reveal them all right now, but they are there, awaiting the click of your itchy finger. This week, I shall present one excellent source: Shout Factory. Curre...

  • Film Review: Everest

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Oct 14, 2015

    The beauty of mountain climbing is its absurdity. Climbers do not follow their bliss in order to make scientific discoveries or chart new lands; they do so for self-glorification. It's a competitive sport, against one's own record, and against competing mountain stalkers who are equal or unequal seekers of fame, endorsements, biopics, and book deals. The recent documentary Meru, which has Montana connections, delved into the psychology of the climber. Jon Krakauer explored this psychology in...

  • The Truth About Reviews

    D.K. Holm, In Defense of Criticism|Oct 7, 2015

    Reflections on the value of movie criticism in general and their necessity to newspapers in particular could fill volumes, and do. The answer to the question “Why run film reviews?” is short, however. It’s a sad truth that there is little good film writing these days. Staff movie reviewers have been dismissed from their posts across the nation, and those who remain are granted less and less space. The Internet seems ruled by a lynch mob mentality, as shown in the online pileup that purported to be rational comment on the second season of True...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, the Worx, and Beyond

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Oct 7, 2015

    It must be a particularly galling fact to members of the political right that few humorists are conservative. For the lefties, there is a host of comedic news sources all week long that preach to their choir. On most week nights at Comedy Central there is The Daily Show, recently taken over by a South African comic named Trevor Noah. He did all right his first week out. Around 11:30 you can turn to CBS for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. While taking on the trappings of the moribund talk...

  • Book Review: Author Brings Dashiell Hammett, Butte to Life

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Sep 30, 2015

    No one knows when detective fiction writer Dashiell Hammett first heard of Butte, Montana, but we know when the narrator of Red Harvest first heard of Personville, Butte's novelistic stand-in. In the novel's famous opening paragraph, the narrator writes, "I first heard Personville called Poisonville by a red-haired mucker named Hickey Dewey in the Big Ship in Butte. He also called his shirt a shoit. I didn't think anything of what he had done to the city's name. Later I heard men who could...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, the Worx, and Beyond

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Sep 30, 2015

    The new “fall” season of television is already a washout. On the four main networks, ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC, there is a deadening similarity to most of the shows, which fall into four categories: sitcoms about big families; sitcoms about loser singles on the make; police-courtroom procedurals; and conspiracy tales that develop over a season. Fortunately, the second season of Fargo, returns on Monday, Oct. 12, with a prequel of sorts to incidents in the first season. Minority Report and Limitless are adapted from movies and end up being two mor...

  • Film Shorts: Valley Cinemas, Streaming, the Worx, Etc.

    D.K. Holm, For The Courier|Sep 16, 2015

    Back in the previous century when I was a kid, we looked forward to the fall season of television, when the three networks unleashed what seemed to be hundreds of new and returning shows in the course of a week. We’d tick them off with the help of the fall season preview issue of T. V. Guide, which lavishly covered the event. Nowadays, there is too much television, the shows are announced in about 400 magazines and websites, and there is no fall season. New programs dribble out perennially, like baby’s drool. Still, new and returning shows are...

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