Monday, April 30, 2012

Battle Royale (2000)

Here at Blood Brothers we like films that push boundaries. Although certainly not a bad film, "The Hunger Games" didn't push buttons like one would hope. So let's go back a decade or so and scope out "Battle Royale", the Japanese film about a society where we make kids kill one another and a film that loves to push the boundaries of cinema to the brink in all of the most intriguing and ferocious ways. A film whose intensity and brutality is only matched by its clever social commentary and superb execution.

The world is a different place. Society has failed to keep the youth of its countries in check and spreading violence and anarchy has lead everything to this: Battle Royale. A program where one class of students in Japan are taken to a remote island, given weapons, and told they have 3 days to kill each other until only one remains. If more than one remains, then they all die. Now a reluctant class of youth have been chosen and with a few willing participants to edge the game forward, they must make decisions about their lives that will change them forever. It's kill or be killed.

Don't let the track suit fool you, Beat Takeshi has a mean streak the size of the Pacific Ocean.
Ironically, the best thing about "Battle Royale" is with its relatively simple concept it covers an insane amount of ground in its writing and concepts. Everything from how adults and youth misunderstand each other's needs to suicide to love to friendships to the act of death on one's psyche. This movie touches on all of it. With its wicked fast pacing and need to take it to the next level whether it be by paranoia, terrorist ideologies, or plain and simple violence, "Battle Royale" is a film that entertains for two hours, but sticks in the brain for years with its complex characters and twisting leaps of storytelling.

Reminds me of last Tuesday. Oh how I love pheasant hunting.
Only added to this is expert finesse when handling the onscreen execution. The cast is stunningly good with particular nods to our leading students and a brief but very intense performance from legend Beat Takeshi and director Kinji Fukasaku lays the atmosphere of the island the the intensity of the situation on thick with great cinematography and classy thought provoking shots. Although the film is littered with great black humor (more often than not you're not sure whether to laugh or cry like how some of the characters are willing to kill for the most asinine things that seem important to youth), its the intensity and bursts of violence that always stick out. Watching these kids kill with whatever they have (everything is a weapon in this film) and the reasons they kill for really does stick with someone after the film is done. It's this ability to blend entertainment and depth that makes "Battle Royale" the instant classic it is today.

The overreaction to her friend's eating the last of the Cinnamon Life cereal might have been drastic. Might have.
Really the only part that seems out of place are some of the oddly situated dream sequences. The ones between our leading girl and Beat Takeshi seem too artistic for their own good, while some of the basketball game "memories" just flat out come off as awkward. Depending on whether or not you watch the director's cut of the film or not also elongates this further and adds more to it.

The bottom line remains: "Battle Royale" is a brilliant film that combines the great aspects of cult cinema into an artistic and relevant message about humanity and our reluctance to understand what we are doing. It's got amazing execution with a ferocity to push the boundaries of what this film could be and its a film that will remain with its audience long after its finished. Blood Brothers approved!

Written By Matt Reifschneider

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011)

"Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" is ripe for cult attraction. Directed by Tomas Alfredson who gave us the undeniably amazing "Let The Right One In" and starring the massively underrated Gary Oldman in the lead role, this espionage film about a Russian mole in the higher ends of British Intelligence in the 1970s contains so much talent in its confines that there isn't any possible way it could be bad...and its not. The film does happen to be quite boring though.

George Smiley (Oldman) has just been given a new assignment. After a botched attempt by his boss to uncover a supposed mole within the British Intelligence (deemed The Circus here) that gets an agent shot and apprehended on foreign soil, he was forced to retire from service along with his mentor and boss Control (Hurt). Things haven't gotten better though and Smiley is brought back in to dig deep and bring out the shadowed mole or prove it was a ruse. Like a puzzle of lies and double truths pieced by both the Brits and Russians, Smiley will have to gather enough intelligence and facts to bring to light one man who threatens it all.

Running in flip flops...the most dangerous game.
Starting with the positives, "Tinker" is a beautiful film. This cannot be understated. Alfredson takes a very 70s approach to filming it focusing on long winding shots, lots of silence, and very subtle detail work to make this film is as nuanced as the clues our protagonist is sifting for. Even the rather timed look of the visuals and decadent use of costumes and sets make one feel like they are living in that time period and never does that feel awkward. This is partnered with stunning performances from Oldman and a plethora of great supporting cast members. Character actors like Mark Strong, Tom Hardy, John Hurt, Colin Firth, and a half dozen others all litter the film with detailed characters that more often than not feel completely brushed over with its over zealous plot twists and detail focused storytelling. Which is a great problem to have.

I'm intimidated by Gary Oldman too. Even when he looks normal.
On the other side of this 'expertly executed' fence, comes the more realistic and now artistic side of film making. Did the damn thing entertain? To a certain point it did. It's execution is damn near flawless and its complex characters and script make for a film to tease out details on further watches. It also happens to be quite boring. For all the details and plot twists, rarely did the film connect with me on an entertainment level. As if one is along for the ride watching the tale unfold rather than in the mix and letting it happen around you. One is so encased with thought at its nuances that one forgets to be in the moment. A rather haunting flaw that leaves one rather uninterested with how the film eventually ends.

In any upcoming elections I would vote Gary Oldman as Zorg for leader. (Picture from "The Fifth Element")
The one major flaw of the film is one that its script and style embraces with a passion, allowing the art of "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy" to pour over with grandeur. This is a film that is one to sit and analyze for its great executions, but not one that I would throw on for fun...which can be a deal breaker in my book.

Written By Matt Reifschneider

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Black Caesar (1973)


The Blaxploitation subgenre is a vast field of all sorts of varying styles. Some are made to be taken seriously, some made to be laughed at and others just made to have dumb fun. For this I love the genre as it is just a great amalgamation of different styles depending on the mindset of the directors and stars. Out of this genre, one film is mightier than the rest and "Black Caesar " is its name and in my house Caesar sits high in his thrown of gold  even above such popular genre namesakes as "Shaft"  and "Cleopatra Jones".

The film opens in the 1950's with a poor black boy doing money collecting for a corrupt cop. Blamed for stealing, the cop severely beats the boy and that sets forward the boys goal of eventually running the Harlem underground. Years later in 1972, the boy has grown into the intimidating Fred Williamson, and with his iron fist takes control of the city by stealing valuable ledgers containing names of corrupt predominate figures in the city. This of course pisses a lot of powerful individuals off and it's not long before William's life is under the gun.
He smiles... right before he kills you!
I've always been a fan of Fred Williamson but he usually plays the same, arrogant but loveable cornball black figure. Director Larry Cohen actually coaxes a great performance out of the ex-pro football player making the actor go down dark territories that he would never go again. Williamson is able to emote an array of emotions, from fear, to anger, to love... something I never thought the actor could ever do! It's a shame that Williamson wouldn't revisit more complex characters as this in future outings in the genre.
 The definition of cool... back in 1972 at least
Cohen's direction and writing and tops making this a Blaxploitation film to be reckoned with. The villains are downright evil and Williamson's character is both engrossing and engaging. The audience gets sucked into his world to see how deep in the rabbit hole he will go and if will emerge alive. Cohen's dark style pulls no punches when it comes to violence, including a powerful scene where Williamson beats a corrupt cop to death with a shine-box after the cop uses it to humiliate Williamson. Great stuff!
"Shine this mother fucker!"
Black Caesar is a character you don't fuck will as he will hunt down, bullet wound and all, to kill any traitoring mother fucker. The engaging character mixed with Williamson's powerful performance and Cohen's dark writing and gritty directing makes this the best Blaxploitation film I've ever seen. James Brown's funky soundtrack only makes it that more great! Hell there are many scenes that would influence later crime classics such as "Scarface" and "Goodfellas" so crime fans shouldn't write off "Black Caesar" as 'just another Blaxploitation film'. The film of course was a success and was quickly followed by a sequel, "Hell Up in Harlem".
 Written By Eric Reifschneider

Friday, April 27, 2012

Hangover: Part II, The (2011)

Despite my initial despise for most modern comedies, "The Hangover" had me in tears. It was unique, clever, and completely out there - pushing limits of atrocity all in the name of humor. "The Hangover Part II" tries to recreate this seemingly impossible combination of ridiculous elements that made the original one work. By recreate, I mean copy it scene for scene in the most asinine ways possible. By tries, I mean fails. Fails hard. What made "The Hangover" work was its unique way of going about its script. When its completely carbon copied for its sequel...its hardly unique or all that shocking. Just leaving us with a film that seems like a knock off of its first entry while adding nothing all that new or impressive.

The legendary wolf pack is back, but this time Stu (Helms) is the one getting married. To make matters even more scary, they are getting married in Thailand. To prevent the problems that arose in Vegas, the four friends along with the bride-to-be's little brother decide to stay in for the party...only to awaken with no recollection of the previous night's events in the middle of Bangkok. Now its a race against time for the wolf pack to find the missing brother of the blushing bride before the wedding is to take place.

Taking this great set of very funny guys into Bangkok should have been comedy gold.  At times, it does work. The reemergence of the offensive Chow character adds some delightfully offensive scenes and there are a couple of moments that utilize the Bangkok scenery to its benefit including a staff wielding monk with a hatred for loud mouth individuals. These moments spark with the insightful combination of offensiveness, wit, and timing that made the entire first film work.

A rarely scene picture of the cast trying to keep originality from making it into the movie.
Beyond simple moments though, "The Hangover Part II" treads water. It repeats the same scenarios. The writing seems repetitive and often forced (along with the jokes where the punch lines are obvious) and the chemistry between our leads just doesn't click like it once did. Bradley Cooper isn't offensive enough. Ed Helms isn't pathetic enough. Galifianakis isn't quirky enough and when he is it never feels natural. It's a watered down script that rarely invokes the same shock and awe that was expected while desperately trying to recreate a once in a lifetime explosion of all the right elements. Director Todd Phillips takes it on a slightly darker route with his visuals and artistic touches, but its all for naught considering the faulty foundations that its all built on.

"The Hangover Part II" is proof of the carbon copy syndrome. No matter how many times you copy an original, it's just never as good. This film flounders under its forced chemistry and formulaic plot progressions while its three leads desperately cling onto anything to make the film funny. As a once great comedian once told me, "If the joke isn't there, don't force it. Humor happens." "The Hangover Part II" doesn't happen and comes across as pressured to bring the same thing when it already happened. Let's hope the recently announced "Part III" improves from this one's failures.

Written By Matt Reifschneider

Monday, April 23, 2012

Private Duty Nurses (1971)


With "The Student Nurses" being a hit, Roger Corman with his new company New World Pictures decided to make a follow-up with "Private Duty Nurses", the second of what would become a five film series (followed by "Night Call Nurses", "The Young Nurses" and "Candy Stripe Nurses"). Though I haven't seen previous film "The Student Nurses" in order to make a proper comparison, all the films in the series have no continuity between one another other than fact they all revolve the subject of exploiting sexy nurses so one can watch each film without worrying about being lost by not seeing the film before. With that said this second film comes off perhaps being the cheapest looking of the whole series I have seen thus far and one of the of the more dull entries as it focuses more on lame 'drama' and less on having our sexy nurses go for broke in the exploitation department.
Like the formula Corman liked to follow after being inspired with "Valley of the Dolls", "Private Duty Nurses" focuses on three separate nurses (a Caucasian brunette, a Caucasian blonde and the token black chick) and how their lives intertwine. We begin with our three nurses looking for an apartment while dodging advances of a sleazy landlord. They end up at a bar where one nurse goes home with the landlord and is amazed by his high tech waterbed, a luxury back in the day this was, and then gets tangles up in a drug cartel. Another nurse while back on duty starts falling for a Vietnam vet who risks his life racing motorcycles where our token black chick becomes sexually involved with a black doctor in the ghetto who tells her about racism in the hospital she works at.
"Doctor, if I take my clothes off do I get detention?" (get it... same guy from "The Breakfast Club")
The film tries to include underlying politically motivated subplots and female liberation into the main plot structure but don't be fooled as this is nothing more than an excuse to play off the fantasies of having sexy nurses undress. With that said director George Armitage takes the material far too seriously and instead of having fun with the sexy nurse theme, he bogs the film down with all the uninteresting melodrama padded with unnecessary montages to rock music to get the film to feature length.
Racial subtext... pretty heavy for a Nursesploitation film isn't it?
I'm afraid to say "Private Duty Nurses" is not that enjoyable of an exploitation film. Armitage takes the material far too seriously and the humor he arbitrarily throws in get lost in the sea of poorly handled scenes of melodrama. Will our Vietnam Vet survive his surgery? Will our brunette nurse finally find love admist being tied up in drug trafficing? Will our token black chick bring racism to light? Will the audience care? Well I sure as hell didn't and I'll bet but a majority of the audience watching this film won't either. If you looking for a nurse themed exploitation film with some entertainment value... look at one of the other entries into the Nurse Pentalogy. They are definitely more enjoyable than this heavy-handed cluster fuck.
 Written By Eric Reifschneider

Shepherd: Border Patrol, The (2008)

"Fuck the border." - Jack Robideaux

Growing up when action films were at the height of their ridiculousness spoiled me. This is one of the many reasons that when the heroes of my youth began doing direct to home video films, it was hard not to be crushed in some ways. Each of these films are still fun and goofy on their own, but its not quite the same as the big budget ass kickers they used to headline. "The Shepherd: Border Patrol" is one of those films where its lead basically has to carry it the entire time and with Jean Claude on autopilot, it leaves this cop on a vengeance film out in the desert for the vultures.

Jack Robideaux (Van Damme) is a cop transferring from the streets of New Orleans to the border patrol facilities of a small New Mexican town. He motives unclear, his scarred psyche and pet rabbit, Jack, are all he seems to carry with him. When a group of ex-Special Forces militants look to smuggle loads of heroin in from Mexico, its up to new man Jack to take his fists, feet, and guns into the fight...

Van Damme and his Van Damme rabbit.
It's actually quite humorous at just how incredibly cliche this film is for the genre. Literally, every little detail one should expect from an action film is clearly on display here. The anti-hero with hidden agendas for bringing some justice to a small unlawful town. The power female lead who begins as a tough as nails individual but must eventually team up with the anti-hero for the greater good. The group of villains sponsored by rogue foreigners trying to lay their own groundwork. They even have the silly buddy partner who smarts off. It's as if "The Shepherd" took the ABC's of action films too seriously and tried not to deviate from what has proven to work. It certainly makes the film very predictable with its simple story and characters.

Jack lends a helping hand to the locals.
That's to be expected though from a film like "The Shepherd". Unfortunately, it sits nice and steady in the B-grade area of film making to be anything more than that. Van Damme seems on autopilot through most of the film and even a great villain henchman played by Scott Adkins can't save the film (despite having a fight between the two! The first of many to come later in various other films). Director Florentine does his best to add in artistic touches, but you can only do slow motion so much before it just gets irritating. And boy does the slow motion get that way. Not only that, but the low budget of the film and its poor directing overall just undermine the entire experience. Not what one wants from an action film ever.

It takes two to tango. It also takes two to kick one another's asses.
There are only two real highlights to this film: the fight between Van Damme and Adkins and the ridiculousness that his pet rabbit adds. It's the best pet for an action hero since Norris had the armadillo. Beyond that though, "The Shepherd" plods along with miniscule plot and characters that only seem relevant when its just cliche enough. Go pick up "Assassination Games" or wait for the new "Universal Soldier" film for better Van Damme/Adkins combinations.

Written By Matt Reifschneider

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Angel III: The Final Chapter (1988)


Though not strong enough to warrant a full fledged film series, New World Pictures couldn't pass up on the opportunity to franchise their money making hooker with a heart of gold character "Angel" thus they forged on to bring audiences a so-called "final chapter" into their "Angel" saga. To my surprise "Angel III" ended up better than I expected but I did go into the film with low expectations after the utterly disappointing second entry "Avenging Angel".
Angel (this time played by Mitzi Kapture) is a successful photo journalist (so much for that law degree she worked so hard for in the second film!) and while on an assignment runs into her mother that abandoned her in the first film. Not long after confronting her mother and learning about a sister she never had, her mother gets blown up so Angel sluts herself up to go undercover as a call girl to find her sister and bring down a high class drug/slave operation.
Mama go boom
Lots of changes in personal between the "Avenging Angel" and "Angel III" occur, most notably series creator Robert Vincent O'Neill stepping down and letting exploitation filmmaker Tom DeSimone take over the franchise reins. DeSimone, hot off his women-in-prison spoof "Reform School Girls", surprisingly takes the film into more serious territory, a breath of fresh air from the overly silly second film. Sadly he also does away with many staples of the original two films, like the quirky secondary characters and the whole street prostitution backdrop causing the franchise to get farther and farther from it's roots.
Our new 'girl next door' version of Angel with her new sidekicks
Also new to the series is star Mitizi Kapture, the third actress to portray the title character. Was it seriously that hard to get an actress to return for a sequel? Though Donna Wilkes fit the role the best, Mitizi comes out being my personal favorite actress in the role and seems much more comfortable than Betsy Russell in "Avenging Angel", though she does maybe have a hair too much of 'the girl next door' image to pull off an ex-hooker. Dispite that she is gorgeous and has a strong presence for an exploitation film. Alongside her is an 'old friend' named Spanky (Mark Blankfield) who never appeared in a film before this. Why not bring back one of the secondary characters from the other films? Even if the same actor wouldn't return why not replace him/her? It never stopped the filmmakers from recasting Angel! We also get Richard Roundtree in one of his many stock cop roles and ex-Bond girl Maud Adams as the leader of the whole drug operation.
"Where's my paycheck?"
"Avenging Angel" was a better 'sequel' but "Angel III: The Final Chapter" is a better film, if that makes any sense. "Avenging Angel" was a much more solid when it came to continuity but the more serious plot and darker tone of "Angel III" made it more engrossing film experience for me, though the tone shift may alienate some "Angel" fans in the long run. For a third entry into an action exploitation series, it wasn't that bad. Much like "Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter", the subtitle is a complete lie as an "Angel 4" did emerge some years later but this one marked the end of the theatrical run of the franchise.
 Written By Eric Reifschneider

Avenging Angel (1985)


With "Angel" being the sleeper it was in 1984, New World Pictures quickly put this sequel into production employing  the same director, writer and a majority of the same cast. One key actress is absent  however with Donna Wilkes passing on the film leaving the title character to be played by the beautiful, yet completely different looking Betsy Russell.  Does she have the assets to make this sequel the loveable campy hit the original was? Let's just say it's hit and miss... a majority being miss.
Angel, now graduating law school, has cleaned herself up and living the good life. When she gets news that the cop that got her off the streets is murdered, she sluts up again to beat the streets with the aid of her quirky friends to take down the criminal operation that killed him.
Angel is back... different looking but 80s as ever
Director Robert Vincent O'Neill decides, unwisely in my opinion, to make this sequel even sillier and campier than the first film. He takes the sense of realism and drop kicks it to outer space as the humor and misfit characters are even more cartoonish than they were in the first film. These eccentric characters (Rory Calhoun, Susan Tyrrell and Steven M. Porter) instead of being loveable, tend to grad the nerves and grow tiresome very quickly. Bettsy Russell also seems uncomfortable in the role of "Angel" never making the character her own or as empathetic as Donna Wilkes' portrayal in the original.
The highlight of Rory Calhoun's career
O'Neill also adds some 'new friends' into the mix, but these guys are hardly as memorable. First up is a pair of transvestites that the audience barely gets to know and the second is some guy called Johnny Glitter, an annoying shit bag that continuously throws glitter over everyone that is accompanied by a ridiculous wind chime sound effect on the soundtrack. I seriously wanted  to reach through my television to strangle his douche bag!
Somebody shoot this guy, please!
I did enjoy the reprehensible villains who are uber violent in their goal to steal property and the return of the wonderful Hollywood Blvd. locations but I didn't dig O'Neill's overexaggerated approach to the film. The sillier, more cartoonish approach makes the B-level campy charm of the original absent and in its place is annoyance. I still enjoyed it for what it was but typical with sequels I didn't like near as much as the original film. "Avenging Angel" still made enough money to warrant two more sequels.
 Written By Eric Reifschneider

Angel (1984)


By 1984 Roger Corman had sold his company New World Pictures in order to start his other film company Concorde Pictures.  Even with his presence and infinite wisdom gone the remaining team at New World had enough experience making entertaining cult exploitation pictures to still produce likeable cult ventures, without the guidance of Corman, proved by the 1984 sleeper hit "Angel".
The name angel refers to the street name of our main character Molly Stewart (Donna Wilkes). Honor student by day, she hustles the streets of Hollywood Blvd by night to pay the bills after being abandoned by her parents. Shit turns worse when a serial killer starts brutally murdering her friends and she goes all Charles Bronson to take her revenge. Can a vice cop help her catch the killer while at the same time convincing her to get off the streets for good?
She looks so angelic... doesn't she?
For an exploitation picture, "Angel" is relatively well made with some good actors well handled by director Robert Vincent O'Neill. Sure the dialogue and gratuitous nudity can get in the way of its story telling (imagine an exploitation film doing that?!) but O'Neill is still able to craft empathy for our main character and her questionable moral decisions to get by.
He's a psychotic killer... because he drinks raw eggs
For me the best part of "Angel" is the quirky secondary characters that aid Angel in her goals and ambitions. We get Dick Shawn as the witty transvestite Mae, Susan Tyrrell as the Jewish dyke apartment manager Solly,  Cliff Gorman as the respectable empathetic vice cop (with a crazy eye) and Steven M. Porter as yo-yo street entertainer Charlie. The real winner though is Rory Calhoun as Kit Carson, a loveable snile ex-western actor turned street entertainer. He totally owns the scenes that he is in.
The picture perfect apartment manager
What helps "Angel" is that it strives to be more than just merely another exploitation picture by providing the audience with empathy for our lead character, a suspenseful killer and even some good old fashioned vengeful action with colorful secondary characters. At it's heart it's still an exploitation picture with some silted dialogue and a few subplots that go nowhere (what happened to Angel's guidance counselor?) that keep it from being better. "Angel" really struck a chord with the grindhouse audiences who in turn made the film a modest hit, paving the way for four sequels: "Avenging Angel", "Angel III: The Final Chapter" and "Angel 4: Undercover".
 Written By Eric Reifschneider

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Killer Elite (2011) - 3.5/5

I've said it before and I'll say it again, I will watch anything with Jason Statham in it. When you throw in the ever awesome Clive Owen and Robert DeNiro with him in a film about 1980s world assassins, then you're damn right I'm there. I'm there in my Sunday best with shoes shining and a big smile plastered on my face. Don't be fooled by the trailers for "Killer Elite" though because it's not the action film it was made out to be. It's much more serious than that. More espionage, character work, and plot that half of Statham's movies combined.

Danny (Statham) and his partner Hunter (DeNiro) have been killing for money all around the world for quite some time. When a job goes awry, Danny finds himself disenfranchised with the life and calls it quits to go live the quiet life in Australia. Killers are killers though and soon Danny becomes entangled in the hardest gig of his life. A Middle Eastern warlord has his ex-partner hostage and Danny has to put together a team of experts to take on some of the most highly trained and paranoid British agents out there...the SAS and the ambitious ex-member Spike (Owen).

Between the two of them, their in-movie kill count has to be near a billion.
"Killer Elite" is fascinating film that earns many, many merits. It desperately tries to combine modern action sequences with an old school approach to espionage film making. The 80s feel is mostly done through writing rather than the visual approach that many films try to replicate (something that ironically comes off as a bit disappointing in the end) and the writing is definitely one of its strongest points. The long winding character driven sequences with extensive team building portions and massive plot progressions featuring its story of betrayal and paranoia at assassinating the individuals are what make this film tick. It's thick with atmosphere and lots of tension on how different portions are going to go down and with the charisma of our three leading men (and a shockingly effective secondary cast who easily give the namesakes a run for their money) the film rocks and rolls with the best thrillers in the last few years.

Tying Statham to a chair can't keep him down...neither can gravity apparently.
Most of the issues that arise in how "Killer Elite" works, comes from its inability to fully adhere to its style. For a film that was broadcast as an action film with all of these awesome sequences, most of them feel oddly out of place. In a more modern style film they would have worked, the fight between Owen and Statham in the hospital is a great little fight to cuffs battle that blends a realistic tone to the sequence, but the film switches from a long shot, old school approach to suddenly having the shaky camera and quick edits. It's not that the action scenes are poorly done or boring - just the opposite really - but the flow between the story and action set pieces seems choppy.

"Killer Elite" was much better than I expected from it. The trailers portrayed it as a rapid fire action film, but the end result is a finely crafted and tension drawn espionage film that homages its 80s roots with a clever story and great characters. It's definitely one of Statham's better films overall (one that can be placed in the ranks of "Blitz" and "The Bank Job" stylistically speaking) and a definite surprise to this long time fan.

 Written By Matt Reifschneider