December 4, 2012, - 2:16 am

Movie Coma Day: Where I Was & What I Saw Today

By Debbie Schlussel

As many readers know, I’m a a longtime film critic for the SiriusXM Patriot Channel’s terrific morning show, “The Mike Church Show,” and you can hear my movie reviews on the show, every Friday morning between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m. Eastern (in addition to reading them here on Fridays). Today, I spent hours and hours and hours in a movie theater watching special movie screenings put on by the Hollywood studios for members of the Detroit Film Critics Society (yes, membership has its privileges, including wasting valuable hours of life in a movie theater that you’ll never get back). It’s our annual all day screening day, which I call “Movie Coma Day.” I see so many movies, I’m in a movie coma by the end of the day. I was literally seeing movies from 10:00 a.m Eastern this morning until nearly Midnight. Five movies today, and at least two of them were were three hour sagas badly in need of bathroom break intermissions. One of them was the much buzzed about Bin Laden kill movie, “Zero Dark Thirty.”


I know it sounds like fun, but trust me, seeing every movie that comes out is work, NOT fun. While this is my choice and I’m not whining, I sit through a whole lot of dreck and miss a lot of hours of beautiful daylight just to see the few cinematic gems and warn you off of the rest. We have this annual movie day in order to vote on our annual choices as a major city movie critics group for the year’s best movies, actors, etc. Every major city has one of these movie critics groups, featuring mainstream media movie critics. (We also get many more movie screener DVDs in the mail that we are expected to watch and then cut up and throw out. You wouldn’t believe the number of DVDs I cut up and throw out–a ton of ’em.)

Below are the movies we saw today. Can you guess from the trailers which ones I liked and which I didn’t like? I’m not allowed to say until I review the movies on the date of their debuts. But you, my readers, are very, very good at guessing the answers to that question, which means I’m either very consistent or too predictable (I like to think a little bit of both is a good thing–you know what to expect from me, and I’m not coming out of left field, pun intended). Stay tuned for my reviews when the movies debut.

Again, can you guess which of these movies I liked, if any?:

* “Not Fade Away“:

* “Django Unchained“:

* “Les Miserables“:

* “Rust and Bone [De Rouille et D’os]“:

* “Zero Dark Thirty“:

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20 Responses

I guess that you liked “Zero Dark” and “Les Miz”, hated the others.

DS_ROCKS! on December 4, 2012 at 2:48 am

FYI, I researched the origin of “Dark Thirty.” The term seems to come from Texas and New Mexico in the 1940s and 1950s.

If you don’t like the movie, you can always give it a few Osama bin Ladens!

BP: Very interesting. Wondered where that came from, and they don’t explain it in the movie. DS

Barry Popik on December 4, 2012 at 3:39 am

You hated Dongo (Django) Unchained aka Mandongo Unchained, I’ll guess it will be one of your picks for worst pos of the year

Maybe you can go o a jag about Django like Roger Ebert did with the movie ‘North’, in which he said “I hated hated hated hated this movie”

I’m pretty sure it’s Quinton Tarantino’s way of playing kiss and make up with Spike Lee for all the gratuitous N word drops he did in Pulp Fiction

AnusPresley on December 4, 2012 at 4:12 am

So many trailers. So many IMDB entries. So little time.

“Not Fade Away” – this would make a nice coming of age flick, provided that one would accept James Gandolfini as a father figure. Which, of course, he had done on a cable series some time back. 2 Reagans + 2 smashed guitars + 4 cannolis + 1 loaded .45

“Django Unchained” – it’s Tarantino, goddamnit! With Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah freaking Hill. “Kill Bill” with more guns. Plus, it’s freaking Tarantino. I’m seeing that, just because. 3 Reagans + 5 buckets of blood + A Fistful of Dollars

“Rust and Bone” – why pick Xmas to unleash that flick. Depressing, grimy, has Marion Cotillard with whom DS has major beefage, and it’s en français. Best suited for viewing on the Oprah channel, but not during this time of year. Non merci – je preferais “Django”. 2-and-a-half-Marxes + 5 Oprahs + 4 boxes of Xanax + some professional help

“Les Miserables” – not everyone likes musicals these days, but for those who do, this must be on movie to watch, especially when you have a showdown between Hugh Jackman and Russell Crowe (yes – he can sing). Disregard Anne Hathaway, and all will be well. 2 Reagans + an old bottle of Cognac + Susan Boyle + 5 pillows (it might get a bit boring, or exhausting)

“Zero Dark Thirty” – is it just me, or is someone trying to do a “Munich” job on the OBL job? Provided, of course, it did happen. Destined to be the tax write-off of the year. 3 Marxes + 3 Obamas + 3 Osamas + Golan + Globus

The Reverend Jacques on December 4, 2012 at 4:12 am


I can’t really hazard a guess how DS will go on the rest, but I will bet you a pinch to a pound of shit that she will hate Mandongo Unchained, despite a big budget, lots of guns and big name actors. It’s just more of the ‘get whitey’ crap being recycled over and over again.

I know how DS thinks when it comes to this ‘kill the honkies’ garbage, which was passe’ in cinema by 1990. It’s been there done that. Tarantino, just go buy Spike Lee dinner at Spago and tell him you’re sorry for being a racist in ‘Pulp Fiction’ already

“Kill white people and they pay you for it? What’s not to like” – Jamie Foxx aka Mandongo Unchained

AnusPresley on December 4, 2012 at 4:36 am

Besides, “The Quick And The Dead” (with Sharon Stone, DiCaprio, Gene Hackman, Russell Crowe) will always be vastly superior to most ‘spaghetti” and homage westerns in the last 20 years

AnusPresley on December 4, 2012 at 4:40 am

Les Miserables?

In France, Hugo’s reputation rests on his beautiful poetry. He is the greatest of French poets.

His verse will never be equaled in France.

NormanF on December 4, 2012 at 4:56 am

I got no idea.

Jack on December 4, 2012 at 10:59 am

Django Christmas day release.

The perfect Christmas movie,right?

The Southern white male.The preferred target of Hollywood bloodlust.

ebayer on December 4, 2012 at 12:33 pm

Not – looks OK

Django – at least the message looks good and LD as a very bad guy is good

Les – pompous

Rust – a partridge

Zero – If it does not go Hollywood. It may take itself to seriously and blow it.

panhandle on December 4, 2012 at 1:00 pm

In the military after midnight was referred to as “Oh Dark Hundred”. Always thought it was just some funny invention of some guys sitting around…

SumDum Phool on December 4, 2012 at 1:08 pm

BTW- I saw the trailer for Zero Dark Thirty and I’m also afraid it’s gonna get the Hollyleft touch…somehow spin that Osama was innocent or some shit, and that ultimately it’s all some rich white dude’s fault…

SumDum Phool on December 4, 2012 at 1:09 pm

Because of their high-pitched speaking voices, I will always have trouble taking Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Cruise seriously, either as leading men or villains. No matter how hard they try, they simply never can manage to sound either authoritative or threatening.

Irving on December 4, 2012 at 1:56 pm

I cannot wait to see Les Miserables…it’s gonna be FABULOUS!

HotwasabiPeas on December 4, 2012 at 3:25 pm

I was hoping that Hollywood at some point would make a serious movie about Nat Turner, John Brown and/or Denmark Vesey that took an honest look at the moral issues involved. But alas, all we get is “Django Unchained.” Nothing inherently wrong about making movies about American slavery. The problem is the lack of good ones.

Gerald on December 4, 2012 at 4:07 pm

Judging from the order I’m going to say Not Fade Away, Django Unchained and Les Miserables. From the trailers I really can’t tell they all look like potentially solid productions. Django’s probably a bit stereotypical in the way it’s trying to invert stereotypes but the cast looks solid so maybe it’s entertaining. I have no idea really.

Frankz on December 4, 2012 at 5:18 pm

NOT to take anything from our heroes in the military but Debbie is like them in one thing. The military do bad things to bad guys so we can sleep in peace at night. Debbie sees then writes bad things about bad movies so we don’t have to. Thanks for taking one for the team

ceannrua on December 5, 2012 at 8:43 am

may be for me not fade away.. This movie tell the teenage when they fall in love..This movie have a a roll music.. This story tell about the teenager..just watch this film because this is related for a teenager.. it a nice film or movie..

neth the lawyer on December 6, 2012 at 2:50 am

Since it is from the director/writer of, “The Hurt Locker”, i’m going to guess that “Zero Dark Thirty” will rank high on the DS scale.

Second pick would go to “Les Miserables”, hard to totally screw up a classic threatrical production, although you can never count hollywood out on screwing up something.

The rest i don’t think Deb enjoyed. The promos are generally way better than the actual movies.

Dave on December 7, 2012 at 1:38 pm

Just saw Zero Dark Thirty.

Random comments:

Makes it seem there was less good evidence for the raid than there actually was. No mention that a notably “tall man” was observed walking on the grounds many times. The evidence of this man being tall and matching Bin Laden’s build was obviously quite significant. Movie makes it seem like he could barely be made out and was only viewed from directly above and obscured by vegetation.

Movie was far more about the CIA operative than the raid. They made it seem like the SEAL team was given the mission and just went in and did the raid. No mention of the significant training on the actual mockup of the compound that took place.

Waterboarding is extremely uncomfortable and I assume in real life administered in a far more controlled and civilized manor. I am guessing that the brutally violent torture that the film portrayed was an exaggeration (just my speculation).

Was the CIA operative actually in real life ambushed in her car by automatic weapon fire and escaped unharmed? Again I am guessing some of the scenes in this film are pure fiction.

George on January 10, 2013 at 3:19 am

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