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A review of a movie or TV show.

Undercity (mini-review)

Bitter, Bitter Balcony, Movie Review, Undercity 2010Andrew WonderSteve Duncan Undercity(2010)
 

“Undercity” is the first of two documentaries we recently found online and hope the beginning of a trend in quality, while short, documentary filmmaking. The documentary is not light on content while filmmaker Andrew Wonder and our guide Steve Duncan takes us through places in New York we’d probably never be able to see. Both members of the crew risk life and limb and show us a near-lost piece of underground history.

As mentioned above, the documentary is short, but it really does capture one’s attention and holds on the entire length of the project. The project really makes us wonder how many other interesting places are hidden from view or blocked off from access in New York and what fascinating treasures they contain. The fact that the documentary ends high atop New York is both ironic and poetic in a way that really makes this documentary stand out for us.

All that information and content held within and we haven’t even mentioned that Steve Duncan is one cool dude.

Check out the full documentary below!

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Underrated Films presents: The Chocolate War

Bitter, Bitter Balcony, Movie Review, The Chocolate War 1988Keith GordonKeith GordonJohn Glover, Ilan Mitchell-Smith Robert Cormier Bitter,Bitterometer,meter The Chocolate War(1988)
 

The teenage years are a tumultuous period where defiance is met by the humiliation of peers. “The Chocolate War” was a controversial 1970’s youth novel by the late Robert Cormier, a study of the institutionalize pack mentality and the price those who defy it pay. In 1988, first time director Keith Gordon (the scrawny actor famous for his “Christine” lead) took Cormier’s book and made an understated, artistically ambitious yet faulty film version that gathered a lukewarm reception. While the film couldn’t quite reach out to a generation that grew in front of John Hughes’ spectacles, “The Chocolate War” found late fanfare driven by Eighties’ nostalgia. A small gem, Keith Gordon’s surrealistic view of adolescent pain, like the characters it follows, perhaps needed time to grow up.

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The Fighter Punches Bitter Balcony, and We Say Thank You!

Bitter, Bitter Balcony, Movie Review, The Fighter 2010Paul Tamasy, Eric JohnsonDavid O. RussellMark Wahlberg, Christian Bale Bitter,Bitterometer,meter The Fighter(2010)
 

“The Fighter” is a movie based on boxing brawler "Irish" Mickey Ward, who at the tail-end of his career managed notoriety with a legendary trilogy of fights with John Gotti. However, the title could also apply to director David O. Russell, whose temper and ability to push actors to their limit has caused infamous and documented on-set riffs with George Clooney and Lily Tomlin. Or maybe it can be attributed to Christian Bale, who went bonkers during the “Terminator: Salvation” set over an assistant’s error. The two talented but enraged men finally get to butt heads, and wonderfully, put their ire to good use in bringing Ward’s underdog tale to a hard-hitting, emotionally charged sports film.

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Black Swan (The White Swan Version). BTY, Winona Ryder is in this, right?

Bitter, Bitter Balcony, Movie Review, Black Swan 2010Andres Heinz, Mark HeymanDarren AronofskyNatalie Portman, Mila Kunis Bitter,Bitterometer,meter Black Swan(2010)
 

Ballet is the last thing I would ever care to sit myself through. A carousel of pirouettes and flips in an auditorium full of penguin suits and fur vested madams seems a bit snobbish, even when I’m humbled by the wealth of talent these dancers possess. However, mix some blood gashes and hot girls making out and “Swan Lake” suddenly comes down to my level! Darren Aronofsky goes DePalma all over Tchaikovsky, whose classic ballet is turned into this year’s “Rosemary’s Baby,” with “Black Swan.”

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Black Swan review [Black Swan version]

Bitter, Bitter Balcony, Movie Review, Black Swan 2010Mark Heyman,Andres HeinzDarren AronofskyMila Kunis,Natalie Portman,Vincent Cassell Bitter,Bitterometer,meter Black Swan(2010)
 

Nina practices ballet real hard. Nina gets role she’s been practicing for. Nina is barely pressured to do a good job. Nina looses it because, well, who freaking knows? Her mom’s an ass and her instructor wants her to do a good job, but there isn’t a reason there beyond Nina’s own neurosis.

Needless to say this Bitter Swan was not impressed. Aronofsky’s decision to direct this in the style of ‘70s horror sounds good on paper, but all we get are some awful shot selection, mediocre lighting, and 20 too many shots of the back of someone’s head while they walk. It’s incredibly uninteresting and bores the audience. It would have been better to direct this in a beautifully shot high art style and had the horror/violence in stark contrast to the rest of the film.

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Bitter Balcony Dusts Off the Arcade with Tron: Legacy!!!

Bitter, Bitter Balcony, Movie Review, Tron: Legacy 2010Adam Horowitz, Edward Kitsis Joseph KosinskiJeff Bridges, Garrett HedlundSteven Lisberger, Bonnie MacBird Bitter,Bitterometer,meter Tron: Legacy(2010)
 

It’s been about two decades since we first saw “Tron” as one of those TV movies of the week. While the basic story was fun (good versus evil, neon Frisbees, etc), the plot was somewhat convoluted for computer illiterates and quite honestly, a little corny. However, the florescent world that director Steven Lisberger envisioned is one of the most aesthetically pioneering landscapes ever captured on film. Originally a box office failure, “Tron” found a loyal and increasing fanbase that understood how ahead of its time this Sci-Fi darling truly was. Attempting to capitalize on the first movie’s longevity, and finally make a franchise out of it, Disney pushed “Tron: Legacy” as this Christmas’ showcase feature; And if something has to be said about the Mickey, the mouse doesn't play around: with a close to 200 million dollar budget and a 3-D wide release, a lot is riding on the light cycles of this revamped series.

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That's Deep, Bro! Enter the Void review!!!

Bitter, Bitter Balcony, Movie Review, Enter the Void 2009Gaspar Noé, Lucile HadzihalilovicGaspar NoéNathaniel Brown, Paz de la Huerta Bitter,Bitterometer,meter Enter the Void(2009)
 

If there’s any movie out there that most reflects how a director spent his teenage years, it's definitely Gaspar Noé’s latest descent into psychedelia chaos “Enter the Void.” Mostly shot overhead from the first person perspective, this plumage into the other side feels like a Friday night Pink Floyd hologram show at the local planetarium. In this venue, underage stoners could philosophize over the secrets of the beyond, letting their inner Philip K. Dick take over while the drugs do their trick. Noé takes this experience one step further, supplying a potent dosage of spiritual rhetoric and jamming it with a kaleidoscopic vision of Japan into each frame of his near 3 hour odyssey. While it might be easy to accuse Noé of indulgence, or even pretension, “Enter the Void” is so equally fascinating and ludicrous that one can’t help but see it through.

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