Midnight in Paris

Cast: Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, Marion Cotillard, Mimi Kennedy, Kurt Fuller, Kathy Bates, Michael Sheen, Tom Hiddleston, Alison Pill, Lea Seydoux, Carla Bruni, Corey Stoll, Adrien Brody…

Written By: Woody Allen

Directed By: Woody Allen

Genre: Comedy/Fantasy/Romance

Running Time: 1 hour, 34 minutes

Release Date: May 11, 2011 (Cannes Film Festival)

MPAA Rating: PG-13


Gil Pender (Owen Wilson) is a frustrated and nostalgic screenwriter who wants to be a novelist. He’s also in a seemingly loveless engagement with a woman named Inez (Rachel McAdams).

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High School

Cast: Matt Bush, Sean Marquette, Adrien Brody, Colin Hanks, Michael Chiklis, Adhir Kalyan, Luis Chavez, Max Van Ville, Mykelti Williamson, Andrew Wilson, Yeardley Smith, Erica Vittina Phillips, Curtis Armstrong…

Written by: Erik Linthorst, John Stalberg Jr., Stephen Susco

Directed by: John Stalberg Jr.

Genre: Comedy

Running Time: 1 hour, 39 minutes

Released: January 24, 2010 (Sundance), wide release in June

MPAA Rating: R


Today being April 20, aka “4/20,” it seemed like the perfect day to rewatch, and write about, a stoner comedy. It just so happened to be the next movie up chronologically, as well, so… here we are.


Henry Burke (Bush) is a prodigy of sorts, with a 4.0+ grade point average, and a full ride MTI scholarship waiting in the wings. He is also quite serious. Travis Breaux (Marquette), on the other hand, a childhood friend of Henry’s, is a hero among his fellow “stoners,” and doesn’t take anything seriously. 

So, Henry smokes his first joint (with Travis in their childhood treehouse), at the worst possible time. The day before campus-wide drug testing is announced. Henry panics, because if he fails the drug test, he will be expelled, his scholarship will fall through, and basically his entire future is blown.

Travis comes up with a plan to make sure everyone fails the drug test. They’ll steal kief (essentially concentrated THC) from a local infamous dealer (Brody), mix it into brownie mix, and dose everyone. If everyone tests positive, no one will be singled out (and the results would likely be questioned). Oh, it also happens to be the day of the annual school bake sale. Convenient, right?

So, that’s basically the plot. It sounds like it would be a bad movie, I know, but it’s actually pretty decent, mostly due to the great performances.

Adrien’s Role: Edward “Psycho Ed” Highbaugh, Esq.

A quick backstory on Ed tells us he graduated high school at age 15, and became a lawyer “before he could drink.” Then, he went on a trip to Mexico, smoked pot laced with PCP, and damaged some part of his brain. He came back home, revolutionized cannabis growing with his smarts, and became a local legend.

This is easily one of Adrien Brody’s best performances. Yes, I am completely serious. “Psycho Ed” is a perfect blend of genius, mad man, villain, and hero, and he brings the quality of the movie up several notches. I realize I’m biased, since he’s my favorite actor and all, but Ed really is the best part of this movie.

Yes, he’s doing somewhat shady stuff. Yes, he’s considered ‘crazy.’ Yes, he looks like the love child of Hugh Jackman and Snoop Dogg (actually, put that one in the plus column). But darn it, there’s an intelligence and depth to him, too…. His approach to growing, security and the like are all very innovative. This is a brilliant man.

Me, from something I wrote some years back

In Closing

There is a lot of good acting going on in High School, which I think is somewhat unique for the “stoner comedy” subgenre. Brody, as I mentioned, is brilliant, but he’s not the only one.

The leads are both excellent. Colin Hanks is fantastic in a “straight man” role, but he does get his turn at being hilarious, as well. Yeardley Smith has a small, but definitely memorable, role. Mykelti Williamson (of Forrest Gump fame) and Andrew Wilson (brother of Owen and Luke) are both solid as friends (and roommates?) of Psycho Ed’s.

Michael Chiklis is almost unrecognizable as the school principal, and his performance is genius. He and his band do a song during the end credits that’s impressive, as well. Sort of a 1970s-styled rock song called “Get Me High.” Because, of course.

If you’re someone who wants to see a variety of Brody’s performances, you don’t want to miss High School. It’s a side of him not seen in any other film.


Movie Overall: 6/10
Brody Performance: 9/10



Fantastic Mr. Fox

Voice Cast: George Clooney, Meryl Streep, Jason Schwartzman, Bill Murray, Eric Anderson, Juman Malouf, Michael Gambon, Robin Hurlstone, Hugo Guinness, Willem Dafoe, Wallace Wolodarsky, Jarvis Cocker, Owen Wilson, Wes Anderson, Karen Duffy, Brian Cox, Adrien Brody, Mario Batali …

Written by: Roald Dahl (book); Wes Anderson, Noah Baumbach (screenplay)

Directed by: Wes Anderson

Genre: Wes Anderson is his own genre, as is Dahl. IMDb says “Animation/Adventure/Comedy”

Running Time: 1 hour, 27 minutes

Released: October 14, 2009

MPAA Rating: PG

Side note

One of my favorites. I love Wes Anderson, and, as you know, I love Adrien Brody. When they work together, it’s like Heaven on Earth for me. Adrien had a simple voice cameo in this one, but I wanted to include it anyway.

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The Brothers Bloom

Hi there, I’m back!

Cast: Adrien Brody, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel Weisz, Rinko Kikuchi, Robbie Coltrane, and Maximillian Schell 

Written by: Rian Johnson

Directed by: Rian Johnson

Genre: Comedy, Adventure/Caper, a bit of Romance

Running Time: 1 hour, 54 minutes

Released: September 9, 2008 (Toronto International Film Festival)

MPAA Rating: PG-13

Side Note

As some of you know, I also write for a movie blog called MovieBabble. I recently did a piece about The Brothers Bloom over there. *Note: that piece contains some minor spoilers, as it’s a retrospective for the 10th anniversary, not a review. If you’d like to read it, you can find it right here.

Adrien’s Role

Adrien plays “Bloom” (no first name is ever given), a semi-willing partner in con to his brother, Stephen (Ruffalo). The two have run scams for years, with Bloom usually playing the charming one who approaches the mark. Bloom wonders who he really is, after a lifetime of his brother writing roles for him. And he wants out.

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The Undertaker’s Wedding

Adrien Brody, Jeff Wincott, Kari Wuhrer, Burt Young, Holly Gagnier, Ralph George

Writer: John Bradshaw

Director: John Bradshaw

Genre: Comedy, Crime

Running Time: 1 hour, 29 minutes

Release: August, 1997 (Canada), February 10, 1998 (U.S.)

MPAA Rating: R


The title alone should tell you this one is a comedy. The Undertaker’s Wedding is definitely just for laughs, there’s nothing overly deep or meaningful going on. If you’ve seen films like Mafia! and Corky Romano, you’ll have some idea of what to expect here. It’s a semi-slapstick comedy about an undertaker named Mario Bellini (Brody) who gets most of his work from mafia killings.

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