Author Archive: Jon Bastian

Jon Bastian

Jon is a playwright and screenwriter who lives in Los Angeles, where he has been currently appearing in Flash Theater LA when not working for Cesar Millan to keep his dogs rolling in kibble.

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This Sherlock Knows His Sh*t

This Sherlock Knows His Sh*t

| April 30, 2012

For the last decade, some of the best television in America has been… made in Britain, no small amount of that from the mind of Steven Moffat, who gave us the British Coupling (quite good), as well as the pilot for the American version (quite dreadful, courtesy of network meddling), and also managed to successfully […]

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NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN: 3-Disc Collector’s Edition

NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN: 3-Disc Collector’s Edition

| April 7, 2009

“You can’t stop what’s coming,” Ellis tells the Sheriff, deep into No Country For Old Men’s barren, abandon-all-hope backstretch. As potent quotables go, it ain’t exactly “Here’s looking at you, kid.” But this sobering little nugget of advice does provide the Coen Brothers’ dusty desert noir with its summative catchphrase—not to mention, to every Oscar […]

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YEAR IN REVIEW: 2008

YEAR IN REVIEW: 2008

| February 2, 2009

A disgraced despot in the waning years of his tyrannical reign. A maverick soldier hocking his values and his individualist spirit for a shot at absolute power. Two—count em’, two—deadly femme fatales: Lady Macbeth in a power-suit and Serial Mom in nerd-chic bifocals. Fire-and-brimstone preachers, reformed terrorists, fanatical newsmen, muckraking journalists, and everyday “Joes,” plumbing […]

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Zack and Miri Make a Porno

Zack and Miri Make a Porno

| November 4, 2008

The funniest thing—the only funny thing, really—about Clerks 2, Kevin Smith’s noisy backslide into his own sloppy seconds, was the unflattering irony woven right into its dirt-cheap fabric. Here was a belated, cash-grab sequel, a return to the same characters and situations Smith began his career chronicling, that actually had the audacity to extol the […]

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Funny Games

Funny Games

| March 23, 2008

When George Sluizer remade his late-’80s, Euro art shocker The Vanishing for American audiences, his original vision got a bit lost in translation. Gone were the Euro, the art, and the shocks, but what truly got buried in the filmmaker’s watered-down, dumbed-down, Hollywood do-over was that bleak, claustrophobic corker of an ending. Stripping the tale […]

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Chicago 10

Chicago 10

| March 9, 2008

They say those who don’t know history are doomed to repeat it, but what of those who only remember the fun parts? It was the decade that spawned Vietnam and the Civil Rights struggle, but if television and the movies are to be trusted, the 1960s was little more than the longest, grooviest party in […]

Be Kind, Rewind

Be Kind, Rewind

| February 27, 2008

Great films often speak great truths, but they can also whisper beautiful lies. According to Michel Gondry, the beating-heart visionary behind Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and The Science of Sleep, those lies can be valuable, too. The heroes of Gondry’s brain-teasing fantasias are dreamers and poets of the unreal: in Sunshine, Joel reshapes […]

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4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days

4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days

| February 7, 2008

It’s been called a wave, but something with “neo” or “realism” in the title might be more appropriate. The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, 12:08 East of Bucharest, and now, 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days–these are the celebrated films of the new Romanian cinema. Boldly naturalistic and steeped in the traditions of verité, these […]

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There Will Be Blood

There Will Be Blood

| January 20, 2008

Seeping out of the ground like some primordial ooze, dark and thick and fluid, a priceless poison. It’s pure crude oil, and what Daniel Plainview sees in it is nothing less than the future–his and a whole nation’s, reflected in the shiny slick that spews from the dirt and coats his hands. The year is […]

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Short Takes – December 2007

Short Takes – December 2007

| December 1, 2007

Television The big news in TV this month and last month–and what will probably continue to be big news in the months to come–is the WGA strike. The Writer’s Guild officially went on strike on November 5th, citing the studios’ stringent policies on negotiating contracts and their continual refusal to cut writers in on residual […]

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