Chekhov's Gunman


Archive for the tag “film”


Looper Poster 2

Rian Johnson is about to be one of the biggest filmmakers on the planet. The man is bringing us the middle piece of a new STAR WARS trilogy, the EMPIRE STRIKES BACK of this much-awaited series. But long before his name became one of interest to the culture at large, Johnson was already a huge figure in the filmmaking world. Read more…


TALKING BACK TO THE MOVIES: The Marvel Cinematic Universe

Avengers Age of Ultron Team

Another TBttM series successfully brought to completion!*

*Don’t laugh

Almost double the length of our previous record-holding series, The Marvel Cinematic Universe has made for a fun summer sojourn into franchise land. My co-host Gabe Levy and I (TV’s Kevin Lanigan) are ecstatic to bring you these twelve episodes that we are very proud of–or “of which you are very proud” if you gotta be that way. Each one comes with a lively discussion of blockbuster filmmaking, and many have accompanying segments about Marvel Television, in case that wasn’t enough for you. If you’ve been waiting for the series to be done to jump on board, now’s the prime time to do it.

And don’t worry: we’ll be back every few months with another episode in this series each time Marvel gets up off its butt and decides to spit out another one of these. You can subscribe to us on iTunes or Stitcher, and I’ll link to each of the episodes on SoundCloud below. Read more…

Talking Back to the Movies: The Brothers McDonagh

In Bruges Colin Farrell Ray

Recently I started a podcast called Talking Back to the Movies. Every few weeks, my friend and fellow filmmaker Gabe Levy and myself pick a filmmaker and go through their works film by film, discussing each one both in terms of itself and in the context of the director as a whole.

We boys recently wrapped up their first series, covering the works of the Brothers McDonagh (that’s Martin and John Michael). Here, for your listening pleasure, are all of the episodes in that series. Read more…

In Praise of the Great Good Movie

galaxy quest

This one goes out to all the wonderful 3 out of 4 star movies, beloved by all. This does not go out to crap.

Not every film is going to change the world. Some movies change our entire outlook on certain issues, shaping our viewpoint in a bold, new way. Some affect us on such a deep and emotional level that we hesitate to ever watch them again, for fear of being rendered a slobbering, tear-stained blob once more.

But there are some films (rare though they may be) that simply aim to entertain. They aim to tell you a story, complete that story, and most likely make you laugh as you marvel at just how many famous people got paid to be in this thing.

I am one of those avid film-watchers that gets slammed because I “just don’t like fun movies. Why are you being so critical? It’s just there to have a good time.” So let me clarify something: I don’t hate fun. Like most people, I enjoy fun. Sometimes, when I’m not debating within myself whether every choice in Citizen Kane was the correct one, I like to just pop in a flick and have a good time. However, fun movies are not precluded from criticism. Read more…

Ten Disappointing Movies- A Mexican Standoff

If there’s one thing film nerds can be accused of, it’s perhaps letting themselves get their expectations a little too high when it comes to the craft they love. I’m as guilty of this as anyone. If The World’s End winds up stinking, I am going to absolutely devastated, and probably inconsolable, liable to be lured out of my sorrow cocoon only by high-quality chocolate and cuddles.

Comic book movies get the blunt end of this stick especially, and I’m going to try my best to prevent this list from getting overwhelmed with spandex and Shakespearian actors collecting a hardy paycheck. Because of this Iron Man 2 and Spider-Man 3 will not be appearing on this list. But they’ll probably be on the next one.

Also not on this list is Star Wars, Episode I: The Phantom Menace, as that is the easiest cop-out answer to this question. That being said…

Pearl Harbor Movie Poster

10.)    Pearl Harbor Read more…

Top Ten Fictional Companies- A Mexican Standoff

The following, as you may have been able to discern from the title as you are most likely a keen traverser of the Internet and thus can put two and two together, is a list of the best companies to be found in fiction. If I missed one, feel free to yell at me in the comments below. Be sure to subscribe so you can really give it to me.

Reaper Cast Workbench

10.) The Work Bench, Reaper Read more…

“Better Than Bladerunner”- Top Fifteen Uses of Voiceover- A Mexican Standoff

Voiceover is a mechanic that I hate. Most of the time, it’s superfluous and annoying and really just only explains the absolute obvious, pandering straight down into the audience’s faces. Personally, it turns me off.

That’s why proper use of the mechanic should be awarded. It’s not without its merits. Sometimes it’s necessary to understanding the plot, while others use it for an added injection of comedy. It can be a handy feature, but only if used correctly. The items on this list will be immortalized for their not being as bad as the voiceover from Bladerunner.

AUTHOR’S NOTE: The entire genre of film noir has been discounted from this list, as the vast majority of its films contain voiceover and it’s all so strikingly similar that it’s hard to differentiate them. That being said, on with the list…

Mean Girls

15.) Mean Girls Read more…

Top Ten Depressing Comedies- A Mexican Standoff

“Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall down a well and die.”- Mel Brooks (probably, who knows if I can trust the Internet)

I don’t quite know what draws the line between comedy and tragedy- jokes I suppose- but I do know that the two intersect more often than you’d think, and I simply can’t pass up the opportunity to use a Mel Brooks quote.

Comedy and tragedy have a closer relationship than we initially believe. There’s a reason we find out later on that many of our favorite comedians suffered greatly with depression. Behind all good funny, there’s something inherently sad. Here’s a list of items that lets the sad shine through a bit more than normal…

Community Troy Birthday

10) Community Season 2 Episode 10- “Mixology Certification” Read more…

Top Ten Pet Owners- A Mexican Standoff

In the real world, many perfectly normal, standard people own many perfectly normal, standard pets. Lots of white people with lots of dogs.

But this is the media. The Liberal media. Here, we don’t have WASPs that own pets, we have pet owners who own wasps for pets. Ash Ketchum has elemental rodents. Ozymandias has a strange tiger-moose thing that is probably explained in the comics but I didn’t read that noise.

Keep in mind that these are not the ten best pet caretakers, but really just ten awesome people who happen to own pets…

Commander Shepard Femshep

10) Commander Shepard from the Mass Effect franchise Read more…

“Big Damn Heroes, Sir”- Top Ten Heroic Sacrifices- A Mexican Standoff

Chekhov’s Gunman is a film and television blog moderated by Kevin Lanigan, a future writer of awesome movies and television and several subpar G.I. Joe sequels. This is a Mexican Standoff, a categorical list of things having to do with movies and television- the essentials of life.

Big Damn Heroes. It’s what everyone wants to be. If you’ve ever played any kind of role play game, you know that everyone thinks they’re the fire hose swinging, yippie-kay-aying hero man John McClane. But in reality, most of us are Ellis, doing cocaine and poorly pronouncing German until we meet our inevitable and unceremonial demise.

But fortunately for the peeps on the following list, they did get to be Big Damn Heroes. For clarification’s sake, these people didn’t necessarily have to die from these sacrifices, but if they didn’t then they totally got off easy. More like Medium Damn Heroes.

Read more…

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