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What looks good for the rest of 2015?…

Posted on August 21st, 2015
What looks good for the rest of 2015?…

by Coop Cooper

“Straight Outta Compton” about the rise of gangster rap group N.W.A. has been a critical and commercial success with impressive box office numbers this past weekend, and it also marks the end of the summer movie season. Here are ten other highly anticipated movies audiences have to look forward to for the rest of 2015…

“Black Mass” (Sept. 18) – Johnny Depp once again makes a bizarre physical transformation to play real-life murderous mobster-turned FBI informant, Whitey Bulger. Depp seems most comfortable when he finds a role he can disappear into, but he always walks the line between drama and parody. Could this be a sincere attempt by the actor to gain the attention of the Academy?

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Coop’s top 10 Movies of 2014 (so far)…

Posted on January 9th, 2015
Coop’s top 10 Movies of 2014 (so far)…

by Coop Cooper

Keeping in mind I haven’t seen several of the hyped filmed which may be up for awards (ex- “Unbroken”, “Birdman”, “American Sniper”, “Inherent Vice”, “Selma”, “Foxcatcher”, “The Imitation Game”, etc…), here are ten of my favorites so far from 2014…

10. “Guardians of the Galaxy” – Possibly the most re-watchable film of 2014, this obscure Marvel comic book became the surprise blockbuster of the year. With comic Chris Pratt reinvented as an action hero co-starring with a menagerie of weird aliens, this franchise could be the “Star Wars” of this generation…

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10 gritty ‘Rural Noir’ films to catch up on…

Posted on September 12th, 2014
10 gritty ‘Rural Noir’ films to catch up on…

by Coop Cooper

Rural Noir’ is a category that can include western, horror or Southern Gothic elements, but more accurately, they are dark and gritty crime thrillers based in rural locations, giving them a kind of isolating, ‘country’ feel. Here are ten of my favorites in chronological order…

10. “Deliverance” (1972) – Over forty years later this Oscar winner still packs a punch. Many mistake it for a horror film and while it has become the inspiration for many backwoods horror films to date, it remains a solid and shocking mainstream thriller about four men pursued by bloodthirsty mountain men while rafting on a Georgia river.

9. “Badlands” (1973) – This artfully-scripted Terrence Malick thriller about two teen lovers (Sissy Spacek and Martin Sheen) on a killing spree in rural South Dakota was the inspiration for “True Romance” and “Natural Born Killers”, both scripted (but not directed) by Quentin Tarantino…

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10 Mississippi actors the state can be proud off…

Posted on May 31st, 2013
10 Mississippi actors the state can be proud off…

by Coop Cooper

While there are many famous actors technically born in Mississippi, not all of them grew up here or have a strong connection to the state. Here are a few who do…

10. M. C. Gainey (Jackson) – This prolific, gruff character actor often plays crooked cops, cowboys, bikers and convicts in films and is recently most recognizable as the scripture-spouting, whip-wielding slave overseer Big John Brittle in “Django Unchained”. He appeared in 20 episodes of the hit TV show “Lost” as character Tom Friendly and is also notorious for his bizarrely hilarious full-frontal nude scene in the movie “Sideways” (2004)…

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Coop’s top 10 movies of 2011

Posted on January 4th, 2012
Coop’s top 10 movies of 2011

By Coop Cooper

10. “Battle: Los Angeles” – This remake of “Independence Day” mixed with “Black Hawk Down” got very little love from critics and a lukewarm response from audiences but I maintain my opinion that it’s the most visually satisfying, most action-packed sci-fi film of the year. I have re-watched “Battle: LA” more than any other film on this list.

9. “Captain America” – This lead-in for “The Avengers” superhero team movie (opening in May of 2012) is second only to “Iron Man” in the series of Marvel Comics films. A “Cap” film was previously regarded as too difficult to sell to a foreign market and potentially corny. Director Joe Johnston allayed all fears by creating a Hollywood blockbuster and introducing new fans to the star-spangled hero…

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6 great movies for the Halloween season

Posted on October 31st, 2011
6 great movies for the Halloween season

by Coop Cooper
There are many great horror films out there but very few actually take place during or around Halloween. Here are six of the best…

6. “Ginger Snaps” (2000) – Ginger and her sister, Brigitte are two high school Goth outcasts… Until Ginger gets bit by a werewolf. The infection gives Ginger the confidence she’s never had… and an appetite for human flesh. The climax occurs during a Halloween party where Ginger doesn’t need a fake costume to look scary. One of the great underrated werewolf films, “Ginger Snaps” is a sly, grim allegory to the pains of female puberty. It spawned two bizarre and substandard sequels but the original has a large fan following…

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10 reasons why film festivals are important

Posted on May 9th, 2011
10 reasons why film festivals are important

After attending numerous film festivals over the years, I quickly learned the benefits of such an event, but was frustrated I was not exposed to them sooner. I feel it is necessary to highlight the advantages so people in my community, and others, can understand what the big deal is. These positives do not apply exclusively to film festivals, but to music, art and all other creative festivals as well…

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10 Most Overrated Movies of 2010 by COOP

Posted on January 18th, 2011
10 Most Overrated Movies of 2010 by COOP

Every year there are several acclaimed films that really rub me the wrong way. It’s not that I don’t agree they are all good, some are and some aren’t, but something about them bugged me and no one can convince me otherwise.

I plan on getting some hate mail for these because they are all popular choices for critics as well as the general public. Hopefully many of you will agree with me on one or more of these because let’s face it, it’s awards season and I’ve got a bad feeling that Inception isn’t going to win a thing despite being the best movie of the year. That sad realization makes this list feel like sweet justice…

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COOP’S TOP 10 MOVIES OF 2010

Posted on January 4th, 2011
COOP’S TOP 10 MOVIES OF 2010

Wow, shooting even a short film takes a lot out of you. Especially if you’re handling the writing, producing, directing, etc… It distracts you from things, such as the website you’ve been building for the past few years.

No, the Small Town Critic site is not defunct, just transitioning to encompass all of my projects, including movie reviews, short films, festival screenings, screenwriting seminars and whatever else I’ve got going on.

To get things on track for the New Year (2011? When did that happen?), here are my top 10 movie pics of the last year…

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Action Flick Chick’s Zombie Survival Guide for a Small Town

Posted on June 15th, 2009
Action Flick Chick’s Zombie Survival Guide for a Small Town

Everyone has at least seen one zombie film, and, if you haven’t, I don’t think we can be friends until you do. So get on it! I’m not waiting around! You have to be prepared for when a zombie outbreak occurs in your own small town. The zombies have to be nipped in the bud (or head) before it takes over the whole world and it is up to you to do it. Prepare yourselves! It’s inevitable…

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10 MOVIES DESIGNED TO OFFEND YOUR RELIGION (Part 2) by COOP

Posted on June 10th, 2009
10 MOVIES DESIGNED TO OFFEND YOUR RELIGION (Part 2) by COOP

The movies in this list fully expected and possibly depended upon offending certain religions in order to succeed. Sometimes the film in question preys upon longstanding fears and prejudices in order to make a point. Here are 10 movies designed to offend your (or someone else’s) religious beliefs (Note: The Small Town Critic does not endorse or defend any of the viewpoints these films present)…

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10 MOVIES DESIGNED TO OFFEND YOUR RELIGION (Part 1) by COOP

Posted on June 9th, 2009
10 MOVIES DESIGNED TO OFFEND YOUR RELIGION (Part 1) by COOP

Movies don’t try to please everyone. Tailor-made for certain demographics, some filmmakers try to entertain or provoke discussion, knowing full well their movie will offend a particular group. The most inflammatory of these movies attempt to question taboos, rituals and customs of many of the world’s most popular religions…

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Top 11 Baddest Killer Robots! by COOP

Posted on May 26th, 2009
Top 11 Baddest Killer Robots! by COOP

Most of us would agree that the bare-endoskeletal Terminators and all of its other models are probably the baddest killer robots of them all, so in honor of them and “Terminator Salvation,” I’m going to rate them higher than #1. Hey, it’s my list I’ll do it if I wanna so I can leave more room for the Baddest Killer Robots of all time in film…

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TOP 10 GREATEST MOVIE TITLES EVER by COOP

Posted on May 13th, 2009
TOP 10 GREATEST MOVIE TITLES EVER by COOP

Here are the movie titles that – when you see them – completely grab your attention. Whether they are the best piece of cinema of all time or a complete piece of crap, one thing cannot be denied… You gotta love that title. Here are the 10 best movie titles of all time in descending order all the way down to #1…

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Porky’s Revenge: Swine Flu and the Virus in Film… by JAY

Posted on May 6th, 2009
Porky’s Revenge:  Swine Flu and the Virus in Film… by JAY

In 1999, civilization teetered on the brink of annihilation as the oracles of doom lined up for a spot on the talk show circuit to pronounce the end of the world as we knew it. According to the naysayers, the Y2K bug was poised to wreck havoc on computer systems across the entire digital spectrum from finance to air traffic control to eBay. In short, it was claimed that this viral Boolean mutation would infect the operating systems of every computer on the planet and thereby destroy our global infrastructure; plunging mankind back into the Dark Ages. NBC, in a deplorable yet completely predictable vulturistic fit of negative opportunism, pounced…

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BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 7 of 7) by JAY

Posted on April 29th, 2009
BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 7 of 7) by JAY

Jay’s final installment of sports films includes all the sports I’m best at. Except for running. And wrestling. Olympics, here I come!…

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BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 6 of 7) by JAY

Posted on April 28th, 2009
BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 6 of 7) by JAY

The penultimate installment of Jay’s list, this one includes a few favorites from the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s and today. Think you know the best surfing and skydiving movies? Think again…

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BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 5 of 7) by JAY

Posted on April 27th, 2009
BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 5 of 7) by JAY

In his fifth installment, Jay focuses on movies that feature sports involving ice/water (and a horse?). C’mon, Hollywood! We need some movies about polo out there!

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BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 4 of 7) by JAY

Posted on April 26th, 2009
BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 4 of 7) by JAY

Did you know there was a movie about lacross? Neither did I. Jay counts down #’s 16 through 20 of the sports movies you may (or may not) know about. Now, if only they’d make a movie about competitive cockfighting…

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BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 3 of 7) by JAY

Posted on April 25th, 2009
BLEEDIN’ WICKED GOOGLY… Films about 35 of those “Other” Sports (Part 3 of 7) by JAY

Jay continues his list 35 of films that feature your favorite (and possibly not-so-favorite) sports. Man, these bring back some memories. This one makes me want to go diving, fencing, fishing, freediving and vault the pommel horse all on the same day. Especially fencing…

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Coop’s latest! The teaser for the upcoming 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 is Coop's latest, most ambitious short film and will be ready for a late 2013 festival season.

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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