Ben Is Back (2019) – Mmmkay

Released: 31st January
Seen: 13th February

Ben Is Back

Every day in the United States, 130 people die from an overdose of opioids. Brought on by the pharmaceutical companies pushing painkillers that turned out to be highly addictive, this crisis has raged on through several communities and destroyed countless lives. While the phrase “Gateway drug” is one usually associated with pot, it should probably be used for opioids exclusively since (According to this piece by the National Institute on Drug Abuse) 80% of heroin users started by misusing prescription opioids. This is an absolute crisis that was inevitably going to be touched on by some form of media other than a documentary. So, how did Ben is Back handle this topic? Pretty well, to be honest.

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Another RuView: All Stars 4, Episode 9

Welcome to another week where a fan talks about drag queens for a few thousand words and over describes everything to the point of actual madness, brought to you a day later than usual because I was at the Werk the World tour that came down here last night and didn’t have the time or energy to do this sooner (if only THIS episode had been the one to leak, I might’ve been able to prepare properly). Before we begin though, if you get a chance to see the Werk the World tour then you should go see it because it’s a lot of fun. Also, if you’re one of the people leaving “Team Manila” all over Naomi’s page, stop it. You’re making the rest of the fandom look bad with your petty crap and while we can call out things that are bad, there’s a line and it seems like it’s constantly being crossed when a fan favourite get’s taken down OR when a black queen does something that would be praised forever if it was done by a white queen… so yeah, now that I’m off my high horse, let’s talk about an episode that revolves around a show I never watched because that’s going to make this so much easier to talk about.

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Cold Pursuit (2019) – The Plow King

Released: 8th February
Seen: 8th February

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When I was picking what film to go see this week, I put a poll up on my twitter account to ask what to see out of the multiple options available at my local cinema. The movies available to choose from were On The Basis Of Sex, Cold Pursuit and Ben Is Back. By the end of the poll, it was a tie between Cold Pursuit and Ben Is Back. A randomiser then picked the winner, so it’s not my fault that I went to see Cold Pursuit, it was fate… horrible, horrible fate

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Escape Room (2019) – Get Me Out Of Here

Released: 7th February
Seen: 4th February (Advanced Screening)

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In 1997 there was a film released called Cube, a glorious little horror film about six strangers waking up in a cube that turned out to be part of a gigantic maze. During the 90’s horror resurgence this was one of the big markers of change, showing you could basically create a tense powerful horror film that relied on people being intelligent instead of just being the dumb jock and the virgin girl. They also dealt with things like suspicion, doubt and the general fear that comes from not knowing which room is going to carve you up into tiny pieces like a box-shaped blender, creating a sense of tension that built every time they would enter a new room and find a new math puzzle. That’s right, it’s a horror film and everyone tries to save themselves with complicated mathematics. It’s a genuinely brilliant thrill ride and I highly recommend it… because that’s basically what Escape Room is, except Escape Room wishes that it was as intelligent as Cube was.

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The Mule (2019) – No Relation to Gladys the Groovy

Released: 24th January
Seen: 2nd February

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In 2014, the New York Times printed an article titled “The Sinaloa Cartels 90-year-old Drug Mule” about a man named Leo Sharp who spent around a decade as one of the biggest drug runners for El Chapo. Dubbed Tata (The Grandfather), Leo would drive around the country in an old truck with hundreds of pounds of cocaine in the back. He’d go undetected due to his age, his clean record and by how fragile he could appear. The article itself is a fascinating read, exploring just how a senior citizen could go from being a veteran to transporting potentially thousands of kilos of cocaine. It’s a tale that seems tailor-made to be a movie and I guess Clint Eastwood thought that too because now we get a film about the 90-year-old drug mule and honestly, it’s not that bad.

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Another RuView: All Stars 4, Episode 8

We’re getting down to the nitty gritty, it’s not too long until the finale and we still have half a dozen queens to get through. The upcoming weeks are destined to be absolutely insane, the queens are now so good that hairs will be split and we have to deal with some strange eliminations that we didn’t expect to happen at any point… yeah, this week’s going to be interesting to talk about, but let’s talk about it.

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Velvet Buzzsaw (2019) – Did Somebody Mention Art?

Released: 1st February
Seen: 1st February

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According to Urban Dictionary, the term “Velvet Buzzsaw” is a term with two possible meanings. The first one is a slang term for vagina (Which the dictionary itself uses in the sentence “As the conversation became sexually charged, she could feel her Velvet Buzzsaw begin to hum”). The second being an extreme oral sex technique where the male essentially motorboats the aforementioned vagina, meaning it’s theoretically possible to Velvet Chainsaw a Velvet Chainsaw. Interestingly, both these meanings of the term predate the conception of this movie by decades and neither one really has anything to do with the actual content of the film. It’s a vulgar title that elicits an image that the film itself chooses not to use; it merely refers to it when one female character explains that she used to take that on as a name in a moment that implies it reflects on her past. It’s a nickname that links her to female art groups like Pussy Riot, an artist group that intentionally chose a name that suggests sexuality in order to gain attention so that their message can be heard.  Now, I bring all this up to show you the disconnect between this film and the very idea it’s trying to explore… that art critique done for the purposes of profit is a crime worthy of the death of the critic and all those who might profit from their work. This idea makes this a fun film to try and talk about, but let’s see what happens.

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