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Will escalating political correctness result in the censoring or banning of classic movies?

Posted on May 15th, 2017
Will escalating political correctness result in the censoring or banning of classic movies?

by Coop Cooper

Last week I happened to catch the 1939 film “Drums Along the Mohawk” starring Henry Fonda about colonial settlers running afoul of Indians and the British during the American Revolution. In an early scene, Fonda’s character, Gilbert, brings his pampered and delicate new bride, Lana (played by Claudette Colbert), to his modest homestead in the wilderness. The first night they arrive, while Gilbert is out gathering firewood, an old ‘Indian’ appears at the door, frightening Lana. She collapses in a fit of hysteria and when Gilbert rushes in and tries to explain to her that the Indian is his trusted friend ‘Blue Back’, she continues her hysterical fit until Gilbert slaps very hard her across the face, snapping her out of it. Blue Back walks outside and brings back a large stick. He tells Gilbert that Lana is a fine-looking wife but a stick would be more efficient in beating her next time she gets out of hand.

In 1939, this scene was meant to be humorous, but now in the modern era, the laughter would more likely come from how un-politically correct this moment is…

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The dark side of online Film/TV content providers…

Posted on April 18th, 2017
The dark side of online Film/TV content providers…

by Coop Cooper

I often praise the virtues of online Film/TV providers such as Netflix and Amazon Prime in this column, and while I feel the web is the future of film distribution, I am starting to see some problems with it. While it might seem like a jackpot for a filmmaker to get their films distributed on a streaming site like Netflix, it doesn’t always add up to positive results for the filmmakers or viewers. What that could mean for us: We might miss out on some great films – or tricked into watching bad ones – because they aren’t being promoted ethically, have misleading ratings or they might be tampered with in such a way that ruins it for the rest of us…






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Celebrity gaffes: Why they can’t shut up and stop offending everybody…

Posted on January 23rd, 2015
Celebrity gaffes: Why they can’t shut up and stop offending everybody…

by Coop Cooper

Becoming a celebrity is a double-edged sword. On one side you gain the admiration of the public, you are offered ample opportunities to obtain wealth and you receive special treatment due to your status. On the other side, you lose most of your privacy, people have unrealistic expectations of you and every word you speak (or type) in the public arena is scrutinized. While some celebrities bemoan this scrutiny, some use it as a platform to promote their beliefs and pet political causes, as well as expand their fame and influence. Some express these beliefs/causes thoughtfully and eloquently. Many do not…






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THE INTERVIEW has a lot in common with ISHTAR (and that is never a good thing)…

Posted on January 2nd, 2014
THE INTERVIEW has a lot in common with ISHTAR (and that is never a good thing)…

by Coop Cooper

The most controversial film of the 21st Century has been released. Was it worth all that fuss? Of course not.
Cheesy entertainment talk show host, Dave Skylark (James Franco), and his producer, Aaron Rapaport (Seth Rogen), suddenly find their meager show getting a lot of attention when rapper Eminem spontaneously comes out of the closet, live on their show. With their sudden boost in ratings, celebrities begin to come onto their show to air out their darkest secrets. When they find out that North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un is a big fan of the show, they land an interview with ‘The Supreme Leader’ who has recently detonated the country’s first nuclear bomb. The CIA sends Agent Lacey (Lizzy Caplan) to Skylark and Rapaport to convince them to assassinate Un (Randall Park) for them which they reluctantly accept…






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Texting in movie theaters: It could get worse…

Posted on May 4th, 2012
Texting in movie theaters:  It could get worse…

Modern movie theaters have done a lot in order to attract viewers. Many now advertise full meals, gourmet coffee, frozen treats, state of the art digital projection, stadium seating, Dolby 7.1 sound, 3-D films and many other amenities to make spending a couple of hours at the theater more attractive. Not all of them work.

Even now, big Hollywood theater chains are considering a move that might send many traditional movie patrons running from the aisles. In a terribly misguided effort to keep the younger generation in movie seats, AMC Regal theaters and other chains are considering allowing viewers to freely text on their cellphones during movies…






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“John Carter” box office bomb? It’s Disney’s fault, not the filmmakers!

Posted on March 20th, 2012
“John Carter” box office bomb?  It’s Disney’s fault, not the filmmakers!

Exactly 100 years ago, “Tarzan” creator Edgar Rice Burroughs wrote the novel “A Princess of Mars” which was serialized and published in “The All-Story” magazine beginning in 1912. Thus began the “John Carter of Mars” novel series which ended in 1964, fourteen years after Burroughs’s death.

Now in 2012, after many tries and failures reaching all the way back to 1931, the first film adaptation of the series has released in theaters under the title “John Carter.” The result is a rousing spectacle of a sci-fi/fantasy film, the likes of which were common in the 1980’s, but are sorely missed today…






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Why negative movie reviews really don’t matter

Posted on August 19th, 2011
Why negative movie reviews really don’t matter

Why negative movie reviews really don’t matter

Article by: Coop Cooper

Energized by the power and fantastic performances of “The Help,” this weekend I ventured online to see what my fellow American movie critics thought. The website Rottentomatoes.com averages the positive and negative reviews from critics of major print publications and assigns a percentage value. Anything under 60% is considered “rotten” and anything over that number is deemed “fresh.” While “The Help” gained a respectable 73% average, compared to the averages of “Crazy, Stupid, Love.” (76%), Captain America: The First Avenger” (79%) and “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” (82%), its average seemed rather low. Considering the film’s box office and awards potential, I wondered where most of the negativity was coming from…






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Communists have already won in RED DAWN remake

Posted on April 4th, 2011
Communists have already won in RED DAWN remake

A favorite film of my childhood, “Red Dawn” (1985) told a bloody fantasy about American teens forced into guerilla warfare against an invading Soviet/Cuban coalition. It starred the late Patrick Swayze, Hollywood’s most popular current meltdown Charlie Sheen and an ensemble of up-and-coming young stars. A new 2009 remake intended to update the concept, making China the primary invading force, but the film was mysteriously shelved and unspoken of until now.

The venerable Hollywood studio MGM revealed this month that it spent an extra $1 million dollars to change the film so as not to offend a country that is far from being a U.S. ally. “Red Dawn” remake producer Tripp Vinson spoke to the press to try to explain why the studio paid an exorbitant amount of money to digitally change the Chinese invaders of the film into the North Korean military: “We were initially very reluctant to make any changes, but… READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE AT THE CLARKSDALE PRESS REGISTER WEBSITE






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A SERBIAN FILM… DARK SIDE returns to review the most controversial horror movie of the year!

Posted on September 20th, 2010
A SERBIAN FILM… DARK SIDE returns to review the most controversial horror movie of the year!

So apparently THE HUMAN CENTIPEDE is no longer the most disturbing film of 2010…

A SERBIAN FILM has been shocking and flabbergasting audiences in the festival circuit this summer and for good reason, it features some grisly set pieces and sequences that have caused people to both condemn it for audacity and praise it for its satirical and political messages. I had to see it for myself and now that I have, I see what the big deal is. I also see the movie what it truly is: A missed opportunity.

Milos (Srdjan Todorovic) is a retired Serbian porn star trying to go legit with a Swedish interpreter wife and a 10-ish year-old son. He can’t seem to get a break, so he takes the odd skin flick job to help pay the bills. One of his scumbag ex-co-stars gives him a lead on a supposed well-funded filmmaker offering Milos an exorbitant amount of cash to make an arthouse porn film. This crazed filmmaker, named Vukmir Vukmir (Sergej Trifunovic), explains to Milos that the cash agreement will be honored as long as Milos enters the scenes without a script or prior knowledge of what they are about. Milos must then improv his way through the scene. Though uncomfortable with the conditions, Milos cannot turn down the money, so he agrees. The scenes start off mildly disturbing, then escalate to violent and illegal…






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What Most People Don’t Know About Movie Piracy by COOP

Posted on July 24th, 2009
What Most People Don’t Know About Movie Piracy by COOP

Elementary school kids and soccer moms have illegally downloaded free music for nearly a decade, but with that problem coming under control thanks to iTunes, the focus has now shifted to movies. People buy bootleg DVDs on street corners from Hollywood to Singapore. Chances are someone in Antarctica is streaming a hot download of the new “Harry Potter” movie as we speak. Movie piracy has hit an all-time high as studios desperately try to develop new strategies and technologies to combat it. With the Motion Picture Association of America claiming a 2.3 billion dollar loss from piracy in 2005 alone, perhaps it’s time for the casual movie buccaneer to become informed about his/her impact on this popular industry…






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V returns and we have advanced clips! Death to the lizards! by COOP

Posted on May 19th, 2009
V returns and we have advanced clips!  Death to the lizards!  by COOP

Yep, it’s another (sigh) remake. But I actually don’t mind if they update this one since the old 1985 TV miniseries/short-lived series doesn’t hold up well these days. In case you don’t remember, were stil in diapers or sitting around in the guff waiting to be born, “V” begins with a bunch of city-sized spacecraft that appear over every major city in the world (yep, “Independence Day” kinda ripped that part off). Turns out they look exactly like us with the exception of their robot-sounding, metallic voice. Instead of attacking, the aliens announce they are happy to find us and would like to share their technology in exchange for some raw materials such as…






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ANNE HATHAWAY + GOLDEN GLOBES + LOSING = SCANDAL! SHOCK! SCANDAL!… worse than we thought???

Posted on January 12th, 2009
ANNE HATHAWAY + GOLDEN GLOBES + LOSING = SCANDAL! SHOCK! SCANDAL!… worse than we thought???

Holy Hannah!!! Click here to read my report on the matter BEFORE the award announcment, then Coop’s opinion on the entire Golden Globes proceedings last month. Ok, not only did Anne LOSE to Kate Winslet, a feat that could’ve been ignored (although a HUGE upset) except for one thing… Hathaway was IGNORED for the entire […]

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THE DARK SIDE CRITIC sez: With My Last GASP… I… BOYCOTT and CURSE the 2009 GOLDEN GLOBES…***UPDATE! FRESH SCANDAL!!!***

Posted on January 11th, 2009
THE DARK SIDE CRITIC sez: With My Last GASP… I… BOYCOTT and CURSE the 2009 GOLDEN GLOBES…***UPDATE! FRESH SCANDAL!!!***

You heard me… (UPDATE AT THE BOTTOM!!!) By the way, hey Coop… “To the last, I grapple with thee; From Hell’s heart, I stab at thee; For hate’s sake, I spit my last breath at thee.” – Khan from “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan” I hear Khan stole that from from a jerk […]

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2008 GOLDEN GLOBE NOMINATIONS (commentary by COOP)…

Posted on December 12th, 2008
2008 GOLDEN GLOBE NOMINATIONS (commentary by COOP)…

I’m one of those naysayers who thinks the Golden Globes (handed out by the less-than-scrupulous Hollywood Foreign Press Association) are no longer valid or coveted. Due to the writer’s strike last year, no one attended and it made for an exceptionally shallow and pointless televised ceremony. When the stars actually attend the ceremony they usually […]

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HOLLOW MAN (2000) *** movie review by COOP

Posted on May 14th, 2008
HOLLOW MAN (2000) *** movie review by COOP

A “teaser trailer” is usually the first thing that the general audience sees of a feature motion picture. Coming out far before the film ever hits the silver screen, the teaser either shows a few attention-grabbing frames of the film or sometimes, nothing of the film at all. I particularly like these trailers due to […]

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Trailer for the award-winning short PRISMA…


A corporate promotional VHS tape from 1984 conceals a brain-altering signal which is said to grant increased health, longevity and psychic powers to those who watch it. View at your own risk...

WINNER: SPECIAL JURY PRIZE, 2017 Oxford Film Festival

WINNER: BEST EXPERIMENTAL FILM, 2017 FantaSci Short Film Festival

SEMI-FINALIST: 2017 NanoCon International Science-Fiction Film Festival

NOMINEE: BEST ANIMATION, 2017 End of Days Film Festival

NOMINEE: BEST GRAPHICS, 2017 FantaSci Short Film Festival

OFFICIAL SELECTION:
2017 Nightmares Film Festival
2017 A Night of Horror Film Festival
2017 H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival
2017 Oxford Film Festival
2017 Crossroads Film Festival
2017 Clarksdale Film Festival
2017 Twisted Dreams Film Festival
2017 Tupelo Film Festival
2017 NanoCon International Sci-Fi Film Festival
2017 FantaSci Short Film Festival
2017 End of Days Film Festival
2017 Grenada Afterglow Film Festival
2017 Shiver International Film Festival

Trailer for the lost short GOD MAKER…


Northern Mississippi 1932:
In a cabin in the woods, a blind blues guitarist will discover his destiny from a lovesick goddess who seeks to corrupt his soul.

GOD MAKER remains unfinished and in limbo for now, but the trailer expresses the mood and imagery intended for the project...

Coop’s award-winning 48 hour short film trailer for REGRESS…


Told in reverse, this experimental made-in-48-hours film begins with a shocking murder then backtracks (like a viewer rewinding a VHS tape) to reveal the chilling origins of this tragedy.

WINNER: BEST SHORT FILM at the 2013 Clarksdale Film Festival...
NOMINATED: BEST DIRECTING by the 2012 48hr. Guerrilla Film Challenge (international contest)...
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2013 Crossroads Film Festival

Watch Coop’s award-winning short film THE BEST DAY…


WINNER: 2012 MAGNOLIA FILM FESTIVAL "Best Homegrown Film"
WINNER: 2012 SEATTLE TRUE INDEPENDENT FILM FESTIVAL "Best Scream"

OFFICIAL SELECTION:
2012 OXFORD FILM FESTIVAL
2012 CLARKSDALE FILM FESTIVAL
2012 CROSSROADS FILM FESTIVAL
2012 NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI FILM FESTIVAL
2012 ATLANTA INDIE HORROR FILM FESTIVAL
2012 OTHERFEST
2012 MISSISSIPPI INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL
2012 SUN AND SAND FILM FESTIVAL

Morgan Freeman asks Coop a question at THE BEST DAY premiere! Video below…


My short film THE BEST DAY premiered in October 2011 at the Delta Cinema in Clarksdale, Mississippi.

Little did I know I had a special guest in the audience who was about to ask me a question during the Q&A. Yep, I got a little flustered when I saw who it was.

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