January 2022


VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Iron Man 3 (2013)

Claire: 4/5 stars, 8/10.
Carolyn: 4/5 stars, 8/10.
Native ratings: 3.9/5 stars Netflix, 7.4/10 IMDB.

Claire’s thoughts: Man… That movie was a bit hazy for me. I enjoyed myself, but I often didn’t have a clue what the plot was. Alcohol is a hell of a drug!

Carolyn’s thoughts: This one didn’t seem to have the same Iron Man charm as the first and second movies, but it was still good overall.  I don’t think it had as much of the comedic elements as the other Iron Man movies, and the Avengers movie.  Oh, this one was directed by someone else, and not Jon Favreau, so that probably explains the different feel.

Claire: It seems as comedic if you’re drunk! But then it’s hard to know what’s going on.

Well anyway… At least this was another Iron Man movie. I’d watch 100 of these. The end.

Directed by Shane Black (writer of the Lethal Weapon movies).
Written by Drew Pearce and Shane Black.

Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark.
Gwyneth Paltrow (Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow, The Royal Tenenbaums, Se7en, Contagion) as Pepper Potts.
Don Cheadle (Ocean’s Eleven movies, Hotel Rwanda) as Colonel James Rhodes.
Guy Pearce (Memento, Prometheus, The Count Of Monte Cristo, The Time Machine (2002), L.A. Confidential, The Hurt Locker) as Aldrich Killian.
Rebecca Hall (Vicky in Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Dorian Gray) as Maya Hansen.
Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan.
Ben Kingsley (Ender’s Game, The Dictator, Prince Of Persia: The Sands Of Time, The Wackness, A.I. Artificial Intelligence, Sneakers) as Trevor Slattery.
James Badge Dale (World War Z, 24) as Savin.
Stephanie Szostak (R.I.P.D., Dinner For Schmucks, 1 ep of The Sopranos) as Brandt.
Paul Bettany (The Da Vinci Code) as Jarvis.
William Sadler (Machete Kills, The Shawshank Redemption, Freaked, Bill & Ted‘s Bogus Journey, Die Hard 2) as President Ellis.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1300854/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Red 2 (2013)

Claire: 4/5 stars, 8/10.
Carolyn: 4/5 stars, 8/10.
Native ratings: 3.7/5 stars Netflix, 6.7/10 IMDB.

Carolyn’s thoughts: This was on par with the first one.  Some action, some comedy, some government politics. Mary-Louise Parker‘s character grows and gains experience.

Claire’s thoughts: How do they keep making Helen Mirren look so good when she’s 68 fucking years old?  Yay Hollywood makeup artists? But anyway, I don’t remember the first movie that well. I mostly just remember how much I liked it. And I like this movie pretty much that same amount.  I think maybe this one didn’t feel as comic-book-y as the last one.  And yes, these kinds of movies are a bit formulaic.  But the fact that it stayed funny is kind of what Red movies are: Comedy-Action movies that are over-the-top and unrealistic.

Daniel Hagan’s adds: “Yeah, they’re empty calories – fun to watch but not particularly notable from a cinema viewpoint”

And since we can never get enough comedy at our house — and prefer comedy to action — it’s great to get both at once.

Plus the cast was great. Anthony Hopkins was particularly fun to watch.

Directed by Dean Parisot (Galaxy Quest, 1 ep of Curb Your Enthusiasm, 1 ep of The Tick live-action series).
Written by Jon Hoeber (Red 1) & Erich Hoeber (Red 1).

Starring some of the same people from the first movie:
Bruce Willis as Frank.
John Malkovich as Marvin.
Mary-Louise Parker (Nancy Botwin from Weeds, The Spiderwick Chronicles, Fried Green Tomatoes) as Sarah.
Helen Mirren (Deep Thought in The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, Georgina Spica in The Cook, The Thief, His Wife & Her Lover, National Treasure: Book Of Secrets, 1 ep of French & Saunders) as Victoria.
Brian Cox (Captain O’Hagan in Super Troopers, The Campaign, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, X-Men 2: X2, Adaptation, Fantastic Mr. Fox, narrator in The Color Of Magic, The Bourne Identity movies, Troy) as Ivan.

Plus some new people:

Anthony Hopkins (Hannibal Lecter in The Silence Of The Lambs, Odin in the Thor movies, Beowulf, Titus) as Bailey. A great performance.
Byung-hun Lee (G.I. Joe movies) as Han Cho Bai.
Catherine Zeta-Jones (The Mask Of Zorro, Ocean’s 11, Traffic, Rock Of Ages, Side Effects) as Katja.
Neal McDonough (Captain America: The First Avenger, Minority Report, 8 eps of Band Of Brothers) as Jack Horton.
David Thewlis (Remus Lupin in the Harry Potter movies, The Big Lebowski) as The Frog.
Wahab Sheikh (Trance) as Iranian Clerk.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1821694/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: The Last Days On Mars (2013)

Claire: 3/5 stars, 6/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 7/10.
Native ratings: 3.3/5 stars Netflix, 5.9/10 IMDB.

This was your VERY average VERY formulaic VERY generic run-of-the-mill rom-com. Overall it was entertaining, but it was not that wonderfully great. Jennifer Aniston was nice to look at. Ben Stiller was pretty funny, and somewhat awkward. We watched this because Philip Seymour Hoffman was in it and we decided to watch a bunch of his movies that were beneath our radar since he passed away. As a bonus: Hank Azaria, the Simpsons voice of sooo many characters. Always rare to actually see him ON screen. He always seems so delightfully miscast, but that’s really just his cartoony stage presence at work.

Directed and written by John Hamburg (director of 3 eps of Undeclared, 2 eps of Stella, writer of Meet The Parents movies, I Love You Man, Zoolander).

Ben Stiller as Reuben Feffer.
Jennifer Aniston as Polly Prince.
Alec Baldwin as Stan Indursky.
Hank Azaria as Claude.
Missi Pyle (Miss Nobody, Visioneers, Harold & Kumar 2, Pretty Ugly People, Live!, Anchorman 1, Dodgeball, Big Fish, Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Percy Jackson 2, Galaxy Quest, 4 eps of The Sarah Silverman Program, 2 eps of Heroes, 2 eps of American Dad, 1 ep of Family Guy) as Roxanne.
Philip Seymour Hoffman (The Hunger Games 2, The Invention Of Lying, The Boat That Rocked aka Pirate Radio, The Big Lebowski, Magnolia, Boogie Nights, Scent Of A Woman, Twister) as Sandy Lyle.
Debra Messing (Grace from Will & Grace, 2 eps of Seinfeld) as Lisa Kramer.
Nick Jameson (President Yuri Suvarov in 24, Batman: Year One, Eurotrip, Beowulf, Extracted, The Critic, 15 eps of Spider-Man-TAS (1990s), 13 eps of Mission Hill, 6 eps of Star Wars: Clone Wars, 1 ep of Star Wars: The Clone Wars) as Van Lew Executive.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1709143/combined

HAPPY NEW YEAR, FUCKERS!

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: The Last Days On Mars (2013)

Claire: 3.4/5 stars, 7.0/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 6.6/10.
Native ratings: 3.1/5 stars Netflix, 5.5/10 IMDB.

Claire’s thoughts: Martian zombies oh my. This was an entertaining movie that straddled the genres of “sci-fi”, “horror”, and “zombie”.  It might have been better if they hadn’t gone the zombie/monster route, but it was interesting nonetheless.

Unfortunately, it feels more sci-fi at the beginning, and more horror at the end.  When the sci-fi decreases and the horror increases, the movie becomes less good.  Less about Mars and more about running away from monsters. Less of the rarer, more difficult, more intellectually complex genre of scifi, and more of the easier, less complex, more generic genre of horror.  I love horror-comedy and scifi-comedy, but scifi-becomes-horror is much worse.

While still a good movie, this could have reached a greater potential.

A better movie that straddles sci-fi, horror, and zombies would be Pandorum. If you are tempted to watch Last Days On Mars – I’d go watch Pandorum instead.

Carolyn’s thoughts: This was alright, but it didn’t leave me feeling all that excited about it.  I give it a slightly-above-generic pass.

Directed by Ruairi Robinson.
Written by Clive Dawson.
Based on a short story by Sydney J. Bounds.

Starring
Liev Schreiber (Victor Creed in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Movie 43, Goon, The Ten, Repo Men, Salt, Kate & Leopold, Scream 2-3) as Vincent Campbell.
Elias Koteas (A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas, Let Me In, Defendor, Shutter Island, The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button, Exotica, Casey Jones in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 1 & 3) as Charles Brunel.
Romola Garai as Rebecca Lane.
Olivia Williams (Hanna, Moira MacTaggart in X-Men: The Last Stand, The Sixth Sense, 1 ep of Spaced) as Kim Aldrich.
Johnny Harris (Snow White And The Huntsman, Dorian Gray, The Imaginarium Of Doctor Parnassus, Big) as Robert Irwin.
Goran Kostic as Marko Petrovic.
Tom Cullen as Richard Harrington.
Yusra Warsama as Lauren Dalby.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1709143/combined