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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.

Wait Until Dark: A Primer for the Maui OnStage Production

It almost doesn’t seem possible, that a play could be scary. With all the things movies have going for them, like creepy soundtracks, ominous sound effects, actors pretending to be petrified and a voyeuristic camera, you’d figure the same effect couldn’t be replicated on stage, in a theater, with actors clearly performing in front of you. Yet, Broadway and theater …

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Review: The Maze Runner

The more Dystopia-laced these Young Adult movie adaptations get, the more they’re really about high school. Let’s examine the evidence. Films based on books with mainstream youth appeal is now one of the hottest brands in film right now. Rarely a season goes by that we don’t see some New York Times Bestseller made into a big budget film, for …

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Review: No Good Deed

It’s a dark and stormy night. You’re a mother of three, home alone with your two very young children. The doorbell rings and you see a good looking man on your doorstep. He says he just survived a car accident and hopes you could let him use your phone. He seems really nice, so you invite him inside. He sits …

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REVIEW: The November Man

Halfway through “The November Man,” it occurred to me that I’ve never, in my life, met anyone named Pierce. I’m blessed with a name so goofy, I’ve never met another Barry Wurst II, either. Still, has anyone ever heard a name more manly and action movie-ready than Pierce Brosnan? It’s hard not to be a fan of the man’s work, …

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Backstage and Review of Maui’s “Miss Saigon”

The lights inside the Castle Theater lower and we’re suddenly jolted by the loud, immense sound of a helicopter swooping down into the audience. This persuasive sound effect sets the tone immediately for the Maui Academy of Performing Arts production of “Miss Saigon,” which begins with a roar and never ceases in exuding confidence. While not a traveling production of …

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REVIEW: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Late into this movie, there’s some hesitation by one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to say his signature line, “Cowabunga.” The turtles, rendered via layers of CGI pixels by Industrial Light and Magic, seem almost embarrassed by the famous catch phrase. Nothing ruins an audience’s nostalgia-fueled goodwill than a movie that’s too proud of its corny identity. I’m reminded …

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Robin Williams- Remembered

Artists like Robin Williams never truly die, as the extraordinary reach of his work will always be felt and never diminish, nor be forgotten. I don’t mean this in some short-sighted, insensitive way. It will take time for all who loved him to mourn, for his millions of fans to grieve and for the details of his death to become …

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Miss Saigon: Why It’s Important- A Primer for the MAPA Production

As the Maui Academy of Performing Arts prepares for the opening of “Miss Saigon,” I’m reminded of the things that make that show, and its potential to reach young Maui audiences, so important. Following last year’s successful, large scale undertaking by MAPA to produce “Les Miserables,” the efforts of local performers and theater artists to replicate the power of “Miss …

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Looking Back: Blown Away

Its embarrassing, I imagine, to be upstaged by a bus, but that’s exactly what happened to the underrated 1994 summer thriller, “Blown Away.” Released a few weeks after the monstrously popular and somewhat similar, mad-bomber-on-the-loose adventure, “Speed,” “Blown Away” suffered in comparison and saw its thunder stolen by Keanu Reeves vs. Dennis Hopper, a movie stealing Sandra Bullock, lots of …

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Looking Back at “Weekend at Bernie’s”

I appreciate the recent slew of articles that fondly remember the summer of 1989, particularly giving attention to Tim Burton’s landmark “Batman” and the effect it had on the zeigeist, appreciative audiences, worldwide box office receipts and the shaping of the modern day comic book movie. I love the film but I’m fond of most of the big summer movies …

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