Tag Archives: contest

Love the Coopers

Last week, Jay and Sean got to see The Night Before, Seth Rogen’s tale of Christmas debauchery. That I wound up seeing the latest holiday offering from the producer of The Family Stone instead wasn’t- as you might think- because I drew the short straw at the Assholes Christmas love the coopersparty. My family is just REALLY into Christmas.

For me, it’s not Christmas until I’ve tried every Starbucks Christmas drink on the menu at least once, wept to the end of It’s a Wonderful Life, helped my colleague understand her granddaughter’s Christmas list, and shared the Swiss Chalet festive meal with my parents. Because my visit home last week happened to coincide with our first snowfall, it seemed the perfect time to scratch the Festive Meal (chicken leg, cramberry sauce, stuffing, and french fries) off the list.  After supper, which was well worth the wait, tradition dictates that it’s time for a Christmas movie.

love the coopers 3The Coopers have clearly not had their festive meal yet because their Christmas is getting off to a Bah Humbuggy start. We meet Elanor (Olivia Wilde) in an airport bar on Christmas Eve where she is stalling and trying to gather up enough nerve to face her family’s Christmas. Her brother Hank (Ed Helms) can’t bring himself to tell his family that he has been out of work for a month. Sam and Charlotte (John Goodman and Diane Keaton), their parents, are getting a divorce but are putting off breaking the news until after Christmas. Charlotte’s sister Emma (Marisa Tomei) has just been arrested by a closeted gay cop (Anthony Mackie) for shoplifting. Meanwhile, Charlotte and Emma’s father (Alan Arkin)’s world has come crashing down when he learns that his favourite waitress (Amanda Seyfried) is moving away.

I didn’t enjoy this movie as much as I’d like to tell my parents that I did but didn’t hate it as muchlove the coopers 2 as I’d like to tell the internet that I did either. Featuring one Avenger, two former Dunder Mifflin employees, and three Oscar winners, it does its best to appeal to a modern audience. Sam frequently and unintentionally misquotes Joy to the World and Silent Night to make them sound dirty. Elanor meets and clashes with a Republican soldier (Jake Lacy) at a bar. There’s even a toddler with the adorable catchphrase “You’re such a dick!”. Coopers is still a holiday sap like me though with all the predictable family reconcilations and unlikely displays of Christmas spirit.

love the coopers 4That we’ve seen it all before is not the only reason Love the Coopers feels insincere. The unusually talented cast phones it in, probably because they know they can afford to. Almost all of them have appeared in their share of good movies over the last couple of years and seem to be counting on the strength in numbers that come with a cast of so many recognizable faces. Wilde is a notable exception. Whether she is the only one on set who actually likes this script or is somehow better at hiding it than her more experienced co-stars, she plays her scenes with Lacy as if she’s sure these are the ones they’ll remember her for. I wouldn’t nominate her for any awards but her confidence does make her dynamic with the Republican soldier the most endearing in the film.

Overall, Love the Coopers earned some big laughs from the Silvercity crowd last week while working in some genuinely sad and tender moments but way too many jokes don’t connect (Mostly from trying too hard. Did I mention that Steve Martin is the narrator?) and mostly feels trite (mostly from not trying hard enough).

For a chance to win a Holiday Prize Pack with a GOOD Holiday movie, tell us about your own favourite Holiday movie in the Comments section of this post. Check our Contests page for more details.



Pixar Twofer

For the first time ever, Pixar is releasing two movies in a single year. You’ve already seen Inside Out (I hope) and today The Good Dinosaur is roaring into a theatre near you.


To celebrate, we want to send someone a prize pack including a copy of Inside Out  on DVD.

To enter: pick an emotion – ANGER \ JOY \ FEAR \ SADNESS \ DISGUST – and leave us a comment telling us which one you’re feeling today.


Gain additional entries by:

  1. Reading about why Jay thinks Inside Out is a bit racist, and leaving a comment.
  2. Tweeting a picture of your best angry\sad\happy\scared\ disgusted face @assholemovies #assholeemotions.
  3. Sharing an “emotional” story or picture on our Facebook page.
  4. Commenting on our review of The Good Dinosaur.

Multiple entries welcome as long as they’re all different.

And congratulations to Ashley at Syncopated Eyeball for winning our Assholes Reading Movies contest!

Room VS Brooklyn

The great think about being an insomniac – the only good thing, in fact – is that it gives plenty of time to pursue my heart’s true passion: reading. If I had to pick between movies and books, it wouldn’t even be a contest. No hesitation: give me books or give me death (and actually, losing the ability to read is the thing I fear most about aging).

Some of my favourite books inevitably get turned into movies. Sometimes it’s a good thing (The Martian was great!) and sometimes it’s a goddamned travesty (The Golden Compass – ugh). This month you can see two movies based on books that for once, I can actually get behind.

Room, starring Brie Larson, is a revelation. It was deemed “unadaptable” but director Lenny Abrahamson delivers a unique cinematic event with a powerhouse performance by its star. The novel, by Emma Donoghue, is smart, taut, and emotional without sentimentalizing. It’s told from the perspective of 5 year old Jack, held captive in the room where his kidnapped mother conceived and gave birth to him, who has no knowledge of the outside world.

Brooklyn, written by Colm Toibin, is simply beautiful. I fell in love with Eilis, the young Irish immigrant, and her voice – so truly and honestly written. She is brought to life on the big screen by Saoirse Ronan in a feature directed by John Crowley. It debuted at Sundance to such appreciation that it sparked a bidding war that landed the biggest Sundance deal ever. I think it’s worth checking out.

When the cool weather arrives, there’s nothing I like better than curling up by the fire with a glass of wine and a good book…except maybe relaxing in the hot tub with a cigar and a good book. In any case, you need a good book. So here’s your chance to win a book and maybe get inspired to see the movie. Enter the contest and let us know which one you’d rather win – Room or Brooklyn –  either way, you can’t lose.

Contest closes at midnight EST November 24 2015. Winner will be announced and notified by email November 25 2015. Anyone can enter in the following ways:

  1. Like us on Facebook (1 entry)
  2. Follow us on Twitter @assholemovies (1 entry)
  3. Tweet this contest to your friends (1 entry)
  4. Check out our review of Room, and leave a comment (1 entry)
  5. Leave a comment on this post and tell us which book you’d like to win (1 entry – mandatory)

Be sure to check our Contests! page often – we’re giving lots of stuff away to celebrate 365 days of Assholes Watching Movies.