The Paws Report – Daddy’s Home, Hateful 8, and The Revenant

It’s been a busy movie time since getting back from Sioux Falls.  I started out with a fluff piece – Daddy’s Home.  Will Farrell has a very mixed bag of movies – mostly silly and uninteresting.  Unfortunately this falls into that category.  It was slow, uninspired and worst of all – unfunny!  Oh well – why did I go?  Well, it was about dads and step-dads and I’m a sucker for movies about family – especially fathers.  For that  reason – it gets 1 paw.  Might have gotten 2 but when you take an important topic and screw it up, what can I say?

Now, The Hateful Eight was a bit different – really??  Oh well, it was Quentin Tarantino’s eighth movie.  So of course that means it’s supposed to be great.  Well, not so much.  Is it just me, or does Mr. Tarantino have a blood fetish?  People don’t just get shot – they get shot and then explode in a shower of blood, and if you have a shower, then you need to have somebody get showered!  In this film the only woman around gets to be the “soakee”.  Stunning really – a bunch of folks get shot, and she just happened to be there to get covered with blood.

Now with all this blood you would expect that people were getting shot all the time.  WRONG!  Nope in reality most of the movie was just people talking – talking talking talking.  And then when they get bored – they shoot each other, and have their bodies/heads, hands, feet, tummys explode.  I don’t know – not much.  2 paws.

So I just got home from watching this, and I’m a bit conflicted.  It was pretty good, but it was so far from the reality of what happened, that I couldn’t stop thinking about what actually happened.  The event in which Hugh Glass got mauled by a grizzly bear happened around Lemon South Dakota.  Now if you haven’t been to Lemon you may not know exactly how flat it is, but I can attest to the fact that it’s flat – flat flat flat.  No mountains, no big rivers, no stands of very very tall pine trees, no river gorges, no earth lodges built in the middle of a forest.  NO beavers (at least not a whole pile of them)  So right from the start I was disturbed since this was pretty much what the film was.  Wyoming, the Big Horns, maybe the Rockies.  I don’t know – heck it might have been filmed in Idaho, but all in all – it just made me a bit nuts. The original and true story is that Hugh Glass got muched by a grizzly bear, left for dead, but recovers enough to CRAWL (broken leg) over 200 miles.  Crawled.  Over 200 miles.  Seems like a pretty good story to me.  Evidently not.  2 paws.

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The Paws Report: 99 Homes

Happy New Year!  I wanted to start with something upbeat since this movie was pretty tough. 99 Homes is basically the other end of the scale from The Big Short.  

Where as The Big Short was about how the people who had money made more money by betting on the housing crisis, this movie is about the actual people who were sucked into using their homes like a giant ATM machine.  The big boys played on the weakness of regular folks – folks who thought that prices would always go up, and that they were going to be fine.  But it didn’t work out that way.   3 paws.

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The Paws Report: The Big Short

OK you know I’m a bit wonky.  I read books like Debt: The First 5000 Years, and The Fine Print, and lots of other crazy books about finance and capitalism, and the American Way.  Plus numerous articles in the Atlantic, and Paul Krugman,  and are you getting it?  I glory in find out about archaic and arcane financial machinations.  So when I heard The Big Short was coming out as a film – I had to see it.  And I was not disappointed.  It was wonderful.  A great primer for those who didn’t really follow the financial melt-down of the American and world economy (loving known as the Great Recession).  And it was funny, and also so so sad.  It made me laugh, it made me cry,  it made me want to puke.  You need to see this, and then go vote for Bernie Sanders.

This is the story of the greatest FRAUD in the world’s history.  You must see it!  4 big gigantic paws.  One of the top 10 of 2015.

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The Paws Report: Star Wars, chapter 700

Oops, my mistake – it was actually only 7 – it just felt like 700.  After 2 hr, and heading into the 3rd hour, I realized that the whole movie was only 2 hrs long.  I couldn’t help but think about the fact that with all their travel around the universe, where the air is always breathable, and there’s always water to drink, and everybody speaks English, or some space language that only they can understand, with all that, they never eat anything.  They never sleep, and they certainly never change their clothes or take a shower.  Just wander around and kill everybody they see.  Never take in a movie, or read a poem, or go dancing.  No, these jokers just kill people and fly around (in vehicles that they know how to fly, even if they have never seen one before).


Now there is a new character in this version of Star Wars: A  Horse Opera.  A really nice looking girl, who kinda jumps off the screen.   I read a review that talked about the new feminism and this actress,  Daisy Ridley, definitely defines the new woman.  She was really really good.  And they brought Harrison Ford back, and he was just like Harrison Ford.  Old, craggy, fun.  And they had all kinds of special effects which look just like these things always do.  The planes are dirty, which I guess is George Lucas’s idea of making all his planes and such look like the just came out of WWII.

I give it 2 paws – one for Daisy, and one for Harrison.  If they had hired a writer, it could have gotten 3, but they forgot.

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Paws Report: Sisters

Trigger Warning:  This movie has the “F” word (amazing that I have to give a warning for Fabulous – what has this world come to?)

Anyway,  I had a lot of fun last night.  For one thing, I didn’t go to Star Wars.  Secondly, I did go see this one.  Now if you don’t like stupid,  slapstick, silly comedy, based around people getting drunk, and stoned, then this is not the movie for you.  If on the other hand, you like Amy Poehler and Tina Fey, and a whole cast of old SNL members doing some great physical comedy, and witty lines, then you will probably like this – 4 paws (and a big wet tongue).

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Call of the Wild

The Call of the Wild is a call to your heart, a call to that deeper part of yourself that you want to express in the work that you do. And sometimes you can even make a living doing what you love, and sometimes you can’t but you still do it. 

Each week Jamie Lee and I do a new piece for KBXE-KAXE radio in Bemidji/Grand Rapids Minnesota.  I’m always on the look out for interesting people to profile.  Artists, business people, collectors, builders and makers – who knows who we might find.   Here are some of the pieces we’ve done so far.  I hope you enjoy them.

Louie Fournier is from Cass Lake, and collects Chain Saws.
Louie Fournier is from Cass Lake, and collects Chain Saws.






Louis Fournier  – Call of the Wild

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The Two Paws Report: Love the Coopers & The Night Before Christmas

Ah the holiday season – where Christmas movies come out like kittens – soft, cuddly,  and peeing on your hands.

Well what can I say – there are a bunch of great movies out that I’m dying to see but the manager at the Bemidji theatre doesn’t seem to have the same taste that I do- such is life.  But back to the Coopers.  You know, it’s just sad that people take the same script that’s been out there for 100 yrs and decide that we need another version of the same thing – family doesn’t seem to get along – but down deep they are all cuddly – like a bunch of kittens.  1 paw.

Now trigger warning, and dirty talk warning:  This movie is absofuckinglutely obscene, but I like that.

Seth Rogen, Joseph Gordon-Levett, and Anthony Mackie are old buds who do all the traditional buddy movie tropes – but in a Christmas vein – and high.  Yep, I know – it’s a surprise that Seth Rogen would be high in a movie, but that seems to be what he can do.  The part that I enjoyed was that there was lots of magic in this film – just like Miracle on 34th Street, and It’s a Wonderful Life – even a guardian angel.  Except of course – this guardian angel is a drug dealer.  Hilarity ensues.  What can I say?  If you don’t like obscene movies with raunchy humor – then don’t go – otherwise – it was a lot of fun – 3 paws.




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The Paws Report: Steve Jobs

OK – Spoiler Alert – I’m not fond of Steve Jobs.  So you may be able to guess my reaction to this film.  But enough about me.

This film was pretty well put together.  It basically tells about the 10 yr period when Steve Jobs directed the building of the Mac, got fired, started NEXT and the did the bubble gum looking computer.  But it’s not a movie about computers and how Steve Jobs did all that -it’s a movie about his relationship – or lack there of – with his daughter, Lisa.  Now if you have read the authorized biography of Steve Jobs called – wait for it – Steve Jobs, then you know that he had a girl named Lisa, and you also know that Mr. Jobs was adopted, given back, and then adopted again.  This being the case, one might think that he would be a little tiny bit friendly to his daughter, but no, not Steve Jobs.  He denies her – denies that she is even his – for years!  So now I have lots of reason to hate him – one – he was a complete asshole with every person he ever worked with, and two – he denied his daughter – even though he knew how much it hurt to be abandoned.

Lots of people seem to like apple products.  And there may even be people who liked Steve Jobs – but I’m not one of them  – 2 paws.

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The Paws Report: Rock The Kasbah

I really enjoyed this movie.  Now here’s a funny thing.  I was watching a  Seth Meyers show tonight (from a little while ago – you gotta love Hulu)  – Anyway he had Zooey Deschanel on the show – talking about how she was the star and like that.  STAR??? She was in about 5 minutes of the show – had 10 lines – maybe.

Kate Hudson and Bill Murray with a tip of the hat to Bruce Willis were the stars.   And I really enjoyed it.  Not top of the heap but quite funny.  Washed up Rock promoter goes to Afghanistan to take one of his singers (the aforementioned Zooey) on a USO tour.  She freaks and the movie begins – without Ms Dechanel.

Kate Hudson on the other hand was good as a street smart hooker saving her money to buy a business back home, and even Bruce Willis was good as a mercenary who’s writing a book on his amazing (not) life.  Bill Murray does a great washed up agent, and I really enjoyed seeing all the Pashtuns (speaking pashtun).

So I say 4 paws.



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The Paws Report: Sicario

This is was a crazy movie. Very dark, but also really well acted and written.  With Emily Blunt, Josh Brolin, and Benicio Del Toro, it’s got some very good folks.  Now this movie is not for the faint of heart.  It’s all about drugs, and Mexican drug lords.  And I have the feeling that it’s supposed to have been happening a few years ago.  But it also seems to be based on a very real thing that used to happen (maybe it still does??) with the CIA in cahoots with drug folks in Mexico.  Anyway I liked it – 3 paws.


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