Tag Archives: TJ Miller


IMG_2469.jpgLet’s face it, sometimes we’re all in the mood for a good shark attack movie.

And by let’s, I mean me, and by sometimes I mean pretty much all the time. Since “The Shallows” bit me in June last year, I guess shark movies are just my jam. (Okay, to be fair I learned in my “research” for this post that Vox just published an article on “Why We Love Shark Movies,” but I maintain that I was first to sink my teeth into this trend.)

So much that I was probably the only person excited to see “47 Meters Down” this weekend. It’s not just a shark attack movie, it’s a shark horror movie. “The Shallows” is more of a suspense woman vs. shark tale focused on the vulnerability of Blake Lively’s character, Nancy, as she is stuck on a rock just off the shore in Mexico with the cousin of Jaws circling about.

“47 Meters Down” has all of the vulnerability and formulaic tropes of characters facing a life or death situation, combined with the claustrophobia of “Open Water” and “Panic Room,” (no sharks, but small spaces.)

I thought for sure there would be no one else in the theater at the 11:10 a.m. showing today (not early enough in my opinion,) but alas I had to get my shark on with some other weirdos and a guy who did not know how to eat popcorn without letting everyone else know that was what was going on.

I wish a shark would have attacked him in the theater and really brought the movie to life.

This brings me to a joke by Ian Edwards noting that shark attacks don’t happen on their turf.

“Sharks live in the water. If you get caught down there, you’re trespassing …  a real shark attack is if you’re somewhere you’re supposed to be, and a shark shows up.”

For example, if you decide to go on an excursion in which you get locked in a cage and dropped into the ocean to “see” some sharks, you can expect that they’re going to stalk and bite you.

Mandy Moore’s character was all like “I don’t know if I want to do this” to her sister Kate, but Kate changed her mind by saying Lisa’s ex-boyfriend would take her back because she would seem adventurous and “not boring.”

Yeah, well not if you’re dead.

I was not on board with that plot point but, to build suspense and empathy for the characters, these movies often find a way to include an extra layer of vulnerability to an already vulnerable situation the characters willingly put themselves in.

Lisa agrees to join Kate and, within probably minutes, the rope holding their cage at just five meters below the water breaks and they plummet to 47 meters with not enough oxygen and sharks EVERYWHERE!

Believe it or not (don’t believe it) there is actually some mystery as to whether the boat crew was in cahoots with the sharks to try to do away with Kate and Lisa. However, (again, if you can suspend your disbelief) most of the horror is set between a school of extra large ocean monsters, declining oxygen levels and getting the bends.

Love or hate the formula of these movies, I was truly scared on a few occasions and tried not to think about whether Captain Taylor ( finally a chance for Matthew Modine to return to the big screen) was a bad guy and orchestrated the whole thing. Let’s (again by let’s I mean me) be real, that would have been way too much effort for the plot of a shark attack movie. Plus, there always has to be room for a sequel.

I knew what to expect with this movie, but couldn’t resist seeing it in the theater. Coming from a true fin, I mean fan, shark movies definitely need to be eaten up at your local cinema house.

Being that “47 Meters Down” is billed as a shark horror film, you’ll see some other horror trailers like “IT” (terrifying) and “Happy Death Day” (not as terrifying), which helped amp up the underwater scares once the feature started.

While I haven’t seen it yet, I recommend “It Comes at Night,” the sophmore project from “Krisha” director Trey Edward Shults, who also plays with the idea of claustrophobia in his films.

After this dose of horror, even just the trailer for “IT,” I know you’ll need a little comedic relief. Try “Detroiters” on Comedy Central starring and created by Veep’s Sam Richardson.   I assume T.J. Miller’s new special on HBO, airing tonight, will also do the trick. “Oh, Hello,” I almost forgot, John Mulaney and Nick Kroll’s Broadway brilliance is now streaming on Netflix.


And Kid Gorgeous himself just added some dates, including Minneapolis in September, to his tour this year.

Yas and k, bye.








59 of 366: Deadpool


I’ll admit some references and the full background of Deadpool were probably lost on me when I saw it last night, but what I did gather as the key characteristics and motives for the “anti hero” and especially the over-the-top style of the film did not work for me.

My friend, who knew the general build of the character going into the film, said one of Deadpool’s traits is that he breaks the fourth wall.

I noticed that early on and just thought the extent the style is used as well as continually making a point that Deadpool isn’t a typical super hero comic book movie or character were unnecessary.

I can appreciate and understand the filmmakers wouldn’t want to stray away from who Deadpool is in the comic books, but a little bit of restraint would have gone a long way in bringing his character to life in a full movie. Why not just make an “anti hero” movie rather than overtly show how and why you’re making one?

The idea could have been refreshing to watch play out and I usually enjoy movies based on comic books, even without ever having read them, but the creative minds behind Deadpool seemed to be trying too hard.

I did find some scenes funny, but the comedy that played as more immature and for cheap laughs took Deadpool down even more for me.

However, anyone who knows me as a comedy nerd will understand that T.J. Miller’s role as Weasel, who is probably Wade/Deadpool’s closest friend and confidant, was my favorite part of the film. His deadpan jokes as Wade’s story as an immortal man with a revenge mission was developed worked well in between the action scenes and gratuitous violence.

It’s at this point that I feel like I am missing something in the reasoning behind the style of the movie and doubting my opinions, maybe because I was really excited to see Deadpool and really wanted to like it.

While Deadpool is a new take on the flood of comic book movies in the last decade or more and a new character, I didn’t find much beneath the surface of that idea and wanted less – not more – from it by the end.