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Mitch Perry Report for 8.10.15 — A summer cinema surprise

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Happy Monday, y’all.

While the entertainment show that is the 2016 GOP presidential campaign continued to make the headlines over the weekend, I was at the movies, checking out the newest Woody Allen film and the surprise Hollywood picture of the summer.

First the Woodman: Let’s face it, Woody Allen films rarely are a completely satisfying experience these days — maybe because he’s too darned prolific. He’s good for a flick a year, but only one of every three or four really come through.

Irrational Man is his latest. It stars Joaquin Phoenix as a brilliant but troubled philosophy professor who comes to teach at a Rhode Island college, and quickly finds himself the object of love (and lust) from a comely co-ed (Emma Stone) and a bored colleague (Parker Posey). Yes, it’s classic Woody — an intellectual who is loved for his mind by a couple of hot women. It’s not bad, but maybe because he’s made so many movies in his brilliant career, he actually rips off parts of the plots from his earlier films — in particularly 1989’s Crimes and Misdemeanors, as well as 2005′s Match Point and 2007’s Cassandra’s Dream. It’s just OK. But if you’re a Woody fan, you should see it.

It should be noted that Woody Allen is now 79, moving on 80. It was at that age a few years ago that another American original, novelist Phillip Roth, hung up the keyboard, saying he had said all he needed to say as an artist. It doesn’t look like Allen’s ready to do that just yet.

My big recommendation is The Gift, a psychological Hitchcockian thriller starring Jason Bateman, Rebecca Hall and Joel Edgerton. Edgerton is the Australian actor who has been in some big movies, like The Great Gatsby.

But who knew this guy was a triple threat? He wrote and directed The Gift, and it’s really, really good. The least said about the plot, the better. Let’s just say that it unfolds in an unpredictable way. If you’re tired of most of the Hollywood crap that’s been churned out this summer, I strongly recommend you check out this film. You can thank me later.

In other news….

There were a plethora of GOP presidential want-to-be’s appearing on the various Sunday morning shows yesterday. We paid particular interest to Marco Rubio’s appearance on Meet The Press.

Bill Nelson — a strong supporter of Hillary Clinton’s campaign for president as well as personal friend of Joe Biden — says he doesn’t believe the vice president will challenge Clinton for the Democratic nomination.

Nelson also told us that he has no second thoughts about coming out in support of the nuclear accord with Iran, despite Chuck Schumer’s declaration of opposition.

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served as five years as the political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. He also was the assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley. He's a San Francisco native who has now lived in Tampa for 15 years and can be reached at mitch.perry@floridapolitics.com.

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