iOS app Android app

Michael Jones
GET UPDATES FROM Michael Jones
Michael Jones lost it at the movies watching 'The Third Man.' Later, he produced a movie review show with Roger Ebert for a Chicago radio station.

He has been writing columns on public policy, movie reviews, and stories for years. He was honored by the Sea Park Surf Association for his nose riding skills, ran with the bulls in Pamplona three separate times, and won the Badminton Invitational Golf Tournament once.

His opening gambit in any interpersonal communication is to ask what one's top ten movies are. From 1992 until late 2003 he verbally communicated only using dialogue from 'One Eyed Jacks.' Since then he has worked much of 'Going South' into his conversations.

Entries by Michael Jones

'9 Voices': The Childhood of a Family

(0) Comments | Posted March 25, 2014 | 6:30 PM

Years after their parents died, the nine children, now adults, decided to do something extraordinary. They would each write about their childhoods, from earliest memory until they left home for college. There were two stipulations: no subject was off limits, write what you want; and second, no one could read...

Read Post

The Grand Budapest Hotel

(2) Comments | Posted March 17, 2014 | 11:17 AM

What a charming movie. What fun everyone seemed to have in making it. All the actors get to overact outrageously. The set designers, at the mercy of Wes Anderson's exquisite taste in all things, seemed to beg for more: one more hotel room, one more hotel lobby, one more corridor...

Read Post

Tim's Vermeer

(0) Comments | Posted February 19, 2014 | 9:29 AM

This is a wonderful documentary about obsession.

Penn and Teller have a friend named Tim, and Tim, after reading a book, decided to try to discover how a Dutch artist created art that effortlessly reaches across three centuries to create more art in mediums that didn't exist when Vermeer painted.

...
Read Post

'Lone Survivor'

(2) Comments | Posted January 15, 2014 | 2:38 PM

"No soldier ever really survives a war."- Audie Murphy


The theater was packed for the first show of Lone Survivor on a Saturday morning.

We sat riveted by the story of Marcus Luttrell, a big, shambling Texan who was the lone survivor of a botched mission in the...

Read Post

The Counselor

(4) Comments | Posted October 27, 2013 | 1:18 PM

This movie is like the spreading dull ache of a sinus infection. A slight discomfort initially, then spreading more generally until your entire head hurts. Your teeth ache. Did you catch a cold from that sniffly young woman in the elevator yesterday? From Algernon at the office who kept sneezing...

Read Post

Django in Black and White

(19) Comments | Posted January 2, 2013 | 12:18 PM

Django Unchained is a nasty, brutish piece of work.

God knows what goes on in Quentin Tarantino's mind these days, but whatever ravings that too much success, too early, created it's a pity that there seems no muse he can turn to for editing. Inglorious Basterds was nasty and...

Read Post

It's Veterans Day

(1) Comments | Posted November 11, 2012 | 2:18 PM

It's Veterans Day.

In The Great War and Modern Memory Paul Fussell, a combat veteran of WWII, reviewed literature and art created by the first world war and wrote of how the shock of millions being killed by high explosives and machine gun bullets affected how we think about...

Read Post

@aiww

(1) Comments | Posted August 16, 2012 | 1:35 PM

@aiww is the Twitter handle of Ai Weiwei, an extraordinary Chinese artist/activist. Through it he has become an international figure and, with the help of other forms of social media, he has painted a more complex portrait of China than the one trumpeted as an example for America by some...

Read Post

Review: Act of Valor

(4) Comments | Posted February 26, 2012 | 6:33 PM

It's been a dry spell movie wise lately, punctuated with god-awful experiments in recherché des movies perdu: Ben-Hur, proving that even a re-mastering in HD, with a state of the art sound system, watched from leather seats in the Evanston Cineplex Theater 1, can't hide its late fifties treacle earnestness;...

Read Post

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

(9) Comments | Posted December 19, 2011 | 10:46 AM

There's cultural self-loathing at the heart of Tomas Alfredson's Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. A tearing at the fabric of Western culture and values based on historical illiteracy and ideological hipness. You know, like typical network news anchors, showing their chops on the au courant issues of the day. Which was...

Read Post

Baseball: A Love Story

(0) Comments | Posted November 21, 2011 | 4:08 PM

A few weeks ago, driving north on I-55 at night, the car buffeted by a gale sweeping down from Canada, I searched for something to listen to on the radio.

FM stations playing automated hits from the '90s or country songs about trains and pain, over to AM, and...

Read Post

The Ides of March Review

(14) Comments | Posted October 10, 2011 | 12:04 PM

There is only one adult in the room in The Ides of March: Philip Seymour Hoffman as the campaign manager for a candidate in the Democratic Primary for president. The rest is sort of an MSNBC/Jersey Shore political cartoon. George Clooney's ego trip of superficial insights into politics from a...

Read Post

The Guard

(6) Comments | Posted August 9, 2011 | 1:44 PM

If I could figure out how to mass tweet the world's population I would tweet: go see The Guard.

It's been a while since I have enjoyed a movie so. I could reach for a comparison that would be too too and write "I haven't enjoyed a movie as much...

Read Post

Cowboys and Aliens

(16) Comments | Posted August 1, 2011 | 2:32 PM

I wonder what the director of Cowboys and Aliens has against Daniel Craig's forehead, or, his eyebrows? But, then again, I wonder what the director has against coherence, soap, Westerns, American movies, Apache Indians, aliens, or Vice President Biden?

We all know and acknowledge that Joe Biden is the...

Read Post

Bride Flight Review

(1) Comments | Posted July 5, 2011 | 6:27 PM

This is an absurdly melodramatic, improbable, romantic, guilty pleasure of a movie. Complete with corny music, more throbbing of propellers whirling on airplanes than any film since Casablanca and with two of the most fecund female characters since the Catholic League's Sex Education tapes warning against the dangers of premarital...

Read Post

13 Assassins: Review

(4) Comments | Posted May 31, 2011 | 12:23 PM

I saw 13 Assassins two weeks ago in London. It's playing at the Music Box.

If you have ever faked grunting laconic Japanese phrases while sipping sake at a sushi bar, you must see this movie. If you've ever imagined the feel of a Hattori Hanzo blade in your...

Read Post

Atlas Shrugged

(280) Comments | Posted April 22, 2011 | 12:14 PM

I went to see Atlas Shrugged with a shrug and little enthusiasm.

I remembered The Fountainhead vaguely. Mostly I remembered the dense prose, and a sense of what...turgidity, if that is a word? I was prepared to walk out on the slightest pretext; there were a number of other...

Read Post

Revisiting Manhattan

(5) Comments | Posted January 17, 2011 | 2:45 PM

I just saw Manhattan again at the Music Box Theater in Chicago for the first time in twenty years.

It was magnificent.

Not as much for the story, which is a little creepy at the fringes: a 17-year-old girl having an affair with a 42-year-old man, but for how the...

Read Post

Truer Grit

(9) Comments | Posted December 29, 2010 | 10:01 PM

Thank goodness we now have a truer grit.

Courtesy of the incredibly talented Coen brothers. Put them on a deserted island with an iPhone and a palm tree and they'd be able to use the video feature to make a South Beach-ian equivalent of Citizen Kane in a week.

...
Read Post

Black Swan -- A Second Time

(16) Comments | Posted December 16, 2010 | 7:54 PM

As the father of a ballerina I wanted to see Black Swan again with her ballet teacher of many years.

The first time, seeing it by myself, I made mental notes of what I noticed: a bit of Repulsion, Adrian Lyne-style over the top sexuality, the cold white light of...

Read Post