California Literary Review

Profile of Matthew Newlin


Matthew Newlin lives in St. Louis, Missouri and has been a film critic for over six years. He has written for numerous online media outlets, including “Playback:STL” and “The Weissman Report.” He holds a Master’s of Education in Higher Education from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and is an Assistant Director of Financial Aid. A lifelong student of cinema, his passion for film was inherited from his father who never said “No, you can’t watch that.”

Email Address:

matthewnewlin [at] yahoo [dot] com

Articles written for the California Literary Review:

  • SXSW Film Festival Day 1: Evil Dead‘s a Winner
    Posted on 09 Mar 2013 in Movies, Movies & TV

    The real treat of the night was director Fede Alvarez’ remake of the classic B horror movie Evil Dead.

  • Movie Review: Oz the Great and Powerful
    Posted on 08 Mar 2013 in Movies, Movies & TV

    But, where the 1939 movie was an unbelievably forward-thinking work of art that inspired filmmakers for decades, the movie we get in 2013 does nothing to advance the medium and only capitalizes on the technology of its predecessors. Director Sam Raimi takes no risks and his lack of inventiveness ruins what could have been a very entertaining prequel.

  • Community Recap: ‘Paranormal Parentage’ (Season 4, Episode 2)
    Posted on 15 Feb 2013 in Movies & TV, Television

    Previous episodes like “Epidemiology” and “Horror Fiction in Seven Spooky Steps” have lampooned genre films and provided some of the series’ most memorable moments, “Paranormal Parentage” was just…boring. The story was subpar and the meta-references were practically winking at themselves. Is it possible to be nostalgic for something that aired less than a year ago?

  • Community Recap: ‘History 101’ (Season 4, Episode 1)
    Posted on 08 Feb 2013 in Movies & TV, Television

    “Troy and Abed back from summer!” Actually, it’s Community back from an unnervingly long break between the end of Season 3, which culminated with three of the series’ most creative episodes, and the start of what will likely be its final season.

  • Republicans Invade Primetime
    Posted on 28 Jan 2013 in Movies & TV, Politics, Television

    When I logged onto the Twittersphere after the show to congratulate @LenaDunham on a job well done, I was shocked at the vitriolic speech of those commenting about the episode and Dunham’s decision to write a character who was not ashamed of his right-leaning political beliefs.

  • Eight Reasons To Watch HBO’s ‘Girls,’ Regardless Of Your Gender
    Posted on 24 Jan 2013 in Movies & TV, Television

    Everyone makes mistakes. And making mistakes won’t ruin your life. Everyone has rough patches, especially when they’re young and figuring life out.

  • On Being A Movie Geek in the Age of the Television Drama
    Posted on 08 Jan 2013 in Movies, Movies & TV, Television

    We are in the middle of a very peculiar cultural crossroads. For the first time in the history of the medium, the quality of television programming (in terms of production value, writing and acting) has equaled most of the movies being released in a given year.

  • Movie Review: Django Unchained
    Posted on 23 Dec 2012 in Movies, Movies & TV

    The real gem, though, is Jackson as Stephen, a character so loathsome that audiences will want to throw their snacks at the screen any time his face appears.

  • Movie Review: The Central Park Five
    Posted on 15 Dec 2012 in African American, Movies, Movies & TV

    The police grilled the boys for over 12 hours, eventually convincing each one that the others were trying to blame the rape on them. The cops could “let them go home” if they would just tell them what happened, i.e. admit to the bogus story the detectives were crafting for them.

  • Movie Review: Hyde Park on Hudson
    Posted on 08 Dec 2012 in Movies, Movies & TV

    Director Roger Michell is obviously in love with the story and the characters, but it is hard to discern why. Michell treats his material with a sort of reverence too honorable for the drivel which it is.

  • ‘Tarantino XX: 8-Film Collection’ Review
    Posted on 25 Nov 2012 in Movies, Movies & TV

    Though Tarantino has said he plans to retire from filmmaking after his tenth film, there will no doubt be enough material generated by him in the next twenty years to hopefully warrant another collection.

  • Movie Review: Rise of the Guardians
    Posted on 21 Nov 2012 in Movies, Movies & TV

    In Rise of the Guardians, we discover that not only are Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny real, they also comprise an ancient league chosen to protect mankind’s children. The Guardians, as they are called, are made up of some of the most beloved characters from our childhood who, as we grow older, become less and less real.

  • Movie Review: Skyfall
    Posted on 09 Nov 2012 in Movies, Movies & TV

    Our latter-day Bond, played to perfection by Daniel Craig, has re-energized the character created by novelist Ian Fleming and encompasses both the class and style typified by Bond in the early years of the now five-decade old franchise. The super spy’s latest outing, Skyfall (a.k.a Bond 23), is not only a humble homage to the earliest films (Dr. No, Goldfinger), but also a gigantic leap forward in terms of the character’s mythology which has been, up until now, rather blurry.

  • Movie Review: Cloud Atlas
    Posted on 26 Oct 2012 in Movies, Movies & TV

    Spanning over 500 years and following more than a dozen characters, the film is composed of six separate stories that do not intertwine (see Magnolia, Love Actually) but instead link from one to the next with the sense that each character is re-living his or her life again and again. While the word “reincarnation” is never used, the sense that this is what Mitchell intended is undeniable. Like the resistance fighters in The Matrix or the protagonist in Run Lola Run, the characters of Cloud Atlas are given the chance to correct mistakes from “past lives.”

  • Movie Review: Argo
    Posted on 12 Oct 2012 in Movies, Movies & TV

    As the eyes of the entire country are watching news reports of the hostages, the CIA, FBI and White House are scrambling to get the six embassy employees out of the country before they are found, captured and, most likely, killed. Tony Mendez (Affleck) is a CIA “exfiltration” expert, having dealt with a number of dangerous and improbable missions throughout his career.

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