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Barry Wurst II

Barry Wurst II
Barry Wurst II is a senior editor & film critic at MAUIWatch. He wrote film reviews for a local Maui publication and taught film classes at the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs (UCCS). Wurst also co-hosted podcasts for Screengeeks.com and has been published in Bright Lights Film Journal and in other film-related websites. He is currently featured in the new MAUIWatch Podcast- The NERDWatch.

Movie Review: St. Vincent

Any movie starring Bill Murray announces itself as a must-see. Few American actors have displayed the kind of transformative career, smart character choices, downright rebellious career shifts and decades-long, 100% hipster factor more than Murray. There has never been, and will never be again, a former “Saturday Night Live” featured player to emerge as a comedy movie star, Academy Award-nominated …

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Review: The Glass Menagerie

Tennessee Williams” “The Glass Menagerie” has always been a masterpiece of twentieth century drama, a compassionate, emotionally probing exploration of human sadness, longing and love. The empathy Williams felt towards his characters (who famously were representations of his own upbringing) comes across in the performances and direction in the new Maui Academy of Performing Arts production, playing now through November …

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Looking Back: Supergirl (1984)

On our NerdWatch podcast, the topic of super hero movies and TV spinoffs comes up on every single episode. It’s such a hot topic for film studios, who are currently running around and frantically green-lighting spin-offs based on every comic book character and property they own. The Marvel Studios set the bar absurdly high with their winning streak that began …

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The Glass Menagerie: A primer for the MAPA Production

Compassion isn’t a quality one instantly associates with the works of Tennesee Williams. Most of his plays famously come with attractive casts, sporting juicy Southern accents, feigning the sweat of a long hot summer, pushing against moral constraints and fiercely expressing their barely contained frustrations and lust. If there exists of a trilogy of essential Williams plays, its unquestionably “Cat …

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Movie Review: Fury

Do we really need another World War II movie? With all the hundreds of films depicting the battle against the Germans and the Japanese, many of them masterpieces and definitive war films, is another one really necessary? I hope I don’t sound disrespectful or insensitive in asking this, as my question has nothing to do with how I feel about …

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Movie Review: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

The creative output from the Disney company has most famously been showcasing cutting edge animation. Yet, there is also the somewhat under-appreciated live action family comedy genre, in which the studio has long excelled. I grew up with the original “The Shaggy Dog,” “The Parent Trap,” “The Absent-Minded Professor” and Kurt Russell-narrating the hilarious, “Dad, Can I Borrow the Car?” …

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Looking Back: Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1994)

Back in January, I had the privilege of sitting in on “The Mike Rosen Show,” Denver’s #1 talk show. Rosen had me there to discuss movies. The topic of the woeful, forgettable “I, Frankenstein” came up. Rosen asked me who was my favorite Frankenstein (he meant which actor playing Frankenstein’s Monster did I prefer). Without hesitation, I answered, “Robert De …

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Looking Back: The Abyss (1989)

James Cameron is nearly unmatched in crafting limitlessly imaginative spectacle. His detractors could rightfully claim that the value of the story and accompanying dialogue didn’t always live up to the staggering imagery. Yet, when the imagery and film craftsmanship is this good, the storytelling succeeds in spite of the flaws. There are two titles in Cameron’s remarkable filmography that stand …

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Looking Back: Wolf (1994)

The introductory scenes of “Wolf” are so perfect, it feels like a slow build to the definitive werewolf movie. Even the titles are just right, as the beaming Columbia Pictures logo is suddenly engulfed by fog, then a full moon. The credits unfold over spooky sounds, Ennio Morricone’s playful score and imagery of a dark, sinister-looking night in Vermont. We …

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Looking Back: Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989)

Is there anyone alive who could resist the charm of “Honey, I Shrunk the Kids”? For a movie that was made in the late 1980’s, it holds up even better than I remembered. My adoration of this breezy, exciting family film hasn’t waned over time but I was amazed how well this still plays. It seems there’s something timeless about …

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