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VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: It’s Complicated (2009)

Claire: 4.2/5 stars, 8.2/10.
Carolyn: 4/5 stars, 7.6/10.
Native ratings: 3.7/5 stars Netflix, 6.5/10 IMDB.

A romantic comedy, but in this case the emphasis is on the romance: It’s a Romance-Comedy not a Comedy-Romance.

And yet, for some reason I could stand it. It was done very well. Streep and Baldwin had excellent chemistry, which drove a lot of the movie. That alone was surprising (the Baldwin part, not the Streep part). But there was also chemistry between Streep and the “dork horse” suitor played by Steve Martin.

Claire was rooting for Alec Baldwin; Carolyn was rooting for Steve Martin. They kept you guessing until the very, very, very end as to how things resolve. Seriously… You think it’s resolved, and then it’s not… And then you do, and then it’s not. This actually kept things suspenseful.

This was a chick flick, but it was done extremely well compared to the average rom-com.

…And yet there was still comedy. A fair amount of marijuana comedy, and some additional comic relief from John Krasinski (Jim from The Office).  And it didn’t stop mid-movie like with most rom-coms and their goddamn fucking Turning Point(tm). It went pretty consistently. If anything, there was possibly more comedy in the 2nd half than in the 1st half.

So yeah. I don’t go out looking for rom-coms to watch, but I do prefer comedy to all other genres, so I do end up watching these a lot simply to have something funny to watch. And in this case, it exceeded my expectations by actually being pretty good.

Written & directed by Nancy Meyers (wrote Father Of The Bride, Baby Boom, directed What Women Want, wrote & directed The Parent Trap).

Starring Meryl Streep as Jane Adler.
Steve Martin as Adam Schaffer.
Alec Baldwin as Jake Adler.
John Krasinski (Jim from The Office, Smiley Face, Shrek 3, 1 ep of Arrested Development) as Harley.
Lake Bell (Cat from Childrens Hospital, 1 ep of Newsreaders, 1 ep of Robot Chicken, 1 ep of Tron: Uprising) as Agness Adler.
Hunter Parrish (Silas from Weeds, 17 Again, 1 ep of Batman: The Brave And The Bold) as Luke Adler.
Mary Kay Place (Smashed, Youth In Revolt, Being John Malkovich, Girl Interrupted, Shrek Forever After, 6 eps of My So-Called Life, 3 eps of King Of The Hill, 1 ep of The Life & Times Of Tim) as Joanne.
Rita Wilson (Sleepless In Seattle, 1 ep of Curb Your Enthusiasm, 1 ep of Frasier) as Trisha.
Alexandra Wentworth (Office Space, 1 ep of Seinfeld) as Diane.
Nora Dunn (Pineapple Express, Bruce Almighty, Zoolander) as Sally.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1230414/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Oblivion (2013)

Claire: 4.6/5 stars, 8.8/10.
Carolyn: 5/5 stars, 8.6/10.
Native rating: 7.1/10 IMDB. Don’t see this on Netflix for some reason.

This had a little bit of everything – mankind moving off planet because the planet is inhabitable, Matrixy aspects, “Go out into the radiation zone to find out the truth”, romance, science, plot twists, a long story with several arcs.

Everything comes together, and it was really well-done.  Well worth the 2 hours to fit it all in.

Granted, I did say “I bet there is a twist, and it is either W, X, Y, or Z”, and it was one of the ones I thought… And that is slight points against. But still… This was very, very, very interesting and entertaining.

Directed by Joseph Kosinski (Tron: Legacy, he wrote the Oblivion graphic novel orignal story).  Written by Karl Gajdusek and Michael Arndt (Toy Story 3, Brave).

Starring Tom Cruise as Jack. Morgan Freeman as Beech.
Olga Kurylenko (Seven Psychopaths) as Julia.
Andrea Riseborough as Victoria.
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as Sykes.
Melissa Leo (Patch, 21 Grams, 3 eps of The L Word) as Sally, Mission Control
Zoe Bell (Django Unchained, Gamer, Grindhouse) as Kara.
Jaylen Moore (The Host) as Radio Operator (uncredited).

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1483013/combined

VIDEO: Just Go With It (2011)

Claire: 3.3/5 stars, 7.2/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 7/10.
Native ratings: 3.8/5 stars Netflix, 6.3/10 IMDB.

Claire’s thoughts: It was a pretty funny movie. Nothing super, but high quality for a generic rom-com. Not the peak work of anyone in it, but a good cast nonetheless.  It felt like it was written by NBC sitcom writers, who absolutely loved plots revolving around everyone lying an unrealistic amount. That was points against. But the difference between this and and NBC sitcom is that the joke goes on for about 5.5X as long. Things do start to get predictable and formulaic in act 3 — which is expected in a rom-com — but the movie is almost 2 hours, so the comedy survives as long as a typical comedy movie before it putters out into the inevitable romance-genre ending all rom-coms have.

Carolyn’s thoughts: Entertaining.  Not spectacular.  It was no Click, 50 First Dates, or Wedding Singer, but it was decent.

Directed by Dennis Dugan (You Don’t Mess With The Zohan, Saving Silverman, Big Daddy, Happy Gilmore, also an actor in a shitton of shows & movies).  Written by Allan Loeb (Rock Of Ages) and Timothy Dowling (Role Models, George Lucas In Love).

Starring Adam Sandler as Danny Maccabee, Jennifer Aniston as Katherine Murphy, Nicole Kidman as Devlin Adams, and Kevin Nealon as Adon.
Nick Swardson (Grandma’s Boy, You Don’t Mess With The Zohan, The House Bunny, Blades Of Glory, Click) as Eddie, Danny’s cousin.
Brooklyn Decker as Palmer, the young love interest.
Bailee Madison (1 ep of Holliston) as Maggie / Kiki Dee, Katherine’s daughter.
Griffin Gluck (Sideways, 1 ep of The Office) as Michael / Bart, Katherine’s son.
Dave Matthews (You Don’t Mess With The Zohan) as Ian Maxtone Jones, Devlin’s husband.
Allen Covert (Grandma’s Boy, 50 First Dates, Deuce Bigalow:Male Gigolo, The Wedding Singer, The Waterboy, Airheads) as Soul Patch.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1564367/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Junior (1994)

Claire: 2.8/5 stars, 6/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 6/10.
Native ratings: 3.4/5 stars Netflix, 4.4/10 IMDB.

Skylar from Breaking Bad? Larry from the Newhart Show? Tony Soprano’s sister from The Sopranos? Chris from Oz?

We decided to get this after watching Kindergarten Cop.  This was about on par with Kindergarten Cop, but not quite as good (kids are slightly less annoying than babies & pregnancy).  Lighthearted fun.

Claire: “Wasn’t there a movie with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito were twins?”  Carolyn: “Yes, it’s called Twins.”

Directed by Ivan Reitman (also directed Ghostbusters 1-2, Kindergarten Cop, My Super Ex-Girlfriend, Stripes)
Written by Kevin Wade (Maid In Manhattan) and Chris Conrad.

Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger as Dr. Alex Hesse.
Danny DeVito as Dr. Larry Arbogast.
Emma Thompson (Brave, Sybil Trelawney in the Harry Potter movies, Agent O in Men In Black 3, I Am Legend, Dead Again) as Dr. Diana Reddin.
Frank Langella (Frank in Robot & Frank) as Noah Banes.
Pamela Reed (Kindergarten Cop, 3 eps of The Simpsons) as Angela.
Aida Turturro (Janice Soprano in The Sopranos, 1 ep of Curb Your Enthusiasm) as Louise.
Christopher Meloni (Chris Keller in Oz, Green Lantern in Green Lantern: First Flight, Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, Harold & Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay, Wet Hot American Summer, Twelve Monkeys, Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas, 1 ep of Michael & Michael Have Issues) as Mr. Lanzarotta.
Anna Gunn (Skyler White in Breaking Bad) as Casitas Madres receptionist.
James Eckhouse (The Avengers, 1 ep of Nip/Tuck, 1 ep of Batman Beyond) as Ned Sneller.
Tracey Walter (Erin Brockovich, Man On The Moon, Young Guns 2, 2 eps of Justice League) as Janitor with Information (uncredited). Not Larry from The Newhart Show.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0110216/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: CARTOONS: REVIEW: My Little Pony: Equestria Girls (2013)

Claire: 4/5 stars, 8/10.
Carolyn: 5/5 stars, 8.6/10. “I am a chick and I like cartoons, so I am allowed to love My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic.” (Notice how she leaves me in the lurch there?)
Jesse: 3/5 stars, 7/10. “OK, I actually enjoyed that. It was actually constructed in such a way as to be philosophically relevant.”
Native ratings: 4.7/5 stars Netflix, 6.3/10 IMDB.

My Little Pony:Friendship Is Magic decided to make a movie about Twilight Sparkle becoming human in a parallel pony world. This actually happened specifically because of bronies, yet they were the ones who backlashed the hardest. Bronies be like, “WTF is this shit!?”, and other bronies be like, “Calm down, maybe it won’t be that bad….” and “Trust the writers…” We were somewhat skeptical ourselves.

Then it comes out, and brace yourself…memes are coming! So many unending memes. We finally got to see it, so now the madness will make sense again. Plus we wanted to be caught up on everything prior to attending Bronycon 2013 (with 8407 other bronies).

Anyway, it was pretty entertaining. I didn’t like how the fighting scenes basically had no fighting in them, relying on deus ex machina tropes to resolve things. I didn’t like how super-convenient the plot was with these kinds of things. But I also accept that this was supposed to be a warm piece about friendship and magic, and that if I’d wanted long and gratuitous fight scenes, I should be watching one of the many animated superhero cartoons I regularly watch. It was a neat exploration of “what if non-human characters became human”, a trope that every non-human animated series should explore for at least one episode. Only this time, we got a whole movie out of it.

Carolyn: It turned out that it wasn’t so bad. It was actually pretty fun. I really enjoyed it.

Directed by Jayson Thiessen.

With the standard My Little Pony crew:

Written by Meghan McCarthy.
Starring Tara Strong (Bubbles from Powerpuff Girls, Toot in Drawn Together, Mary Jane Watson in Ultimate Spider-Man, Sym-Bionic Titan, Wolverine And The X-Men, 20 eps of Family Guy, 4 eps of Clerks-TAS, 4 eps of Gravity Falls) as Twilight Sparkle.
Ashleigh Ball (Allura in Voltron Force, Iron Man: Armored Adventures) as Applejack / Rainbow Dash.
Andrea Libman (1 ep of X-Men: Evolution, a bunch of My Little Pony and Care-Bear stuff) as Pinkie Pie / Fluttershy.
Tabitha St. Germain (12 eps of Aaagh! It’s the Mr. Hell Show!, Olive Oyl in Popeye‘s Voyage: The Quest For Pappy, 7 eps of Iron Man: Armored Adventures, 5 eps of Voltron Force, 8 eps of DragonBall Z, The Legend of Zelda-TAS, The Super Mario Bros. Super Show!, ALF-TAS, 1 ep of X-Men: Evolution, other My Little Pony stuff) as Rarity / Princess Luna / Vice Principal Luna / Cup Cake.
Cathy Weseluck (Thor: Tales of Asgard, 2 eps of X-Men: Evolution, DragonBall Z, 1 ep of Aaagh! It’s the Mr. Hell Show!) as Spike.
Rebecca Shoichet (3 eps of Iron Man: Armored Adventures) as Sunset Shimmer / Twilight Sparkle – singing.
Lee Tockar (3 eps of Iron Man: Armored Adventures, 3 eps of Beast Wars, 2 eps of X-Men: Evolution, 1 ep of Wonder Showzen, 1 ep of 2 Stupid Dogs) as Snips.
Nicole Oliver (9 eps of X-Men: Evolution, 9 eps of Aaagh! It’s the Mr. Hell Show!, The Vision of Escaflowne) as Princess Celestia / Principal Celestia / Cheerilee.
Vincent Tong (Daniel in Voltron Force, Iron Man: Armored Adventures) as Flash Sentry.
Britt McKillip (other My Little Pony stuff) as Princess Cadance.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2908228/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Funeral Kings (2012)

Claire: 3.8/5 stars, 8/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 6.6/10.
Jesse: 3.4/5 stars, 7/10 (I think).
Native ratings: 4.1/5 stars Netflix, 6.1/10 IMDB.

SLEEPER ALERT: This movie isn’t well-known at all, so I’d like to point out this might be the only time you see it mentioned.

“Two altar boys decide to play hooky.”

At first that tagline didn’t grab me, but then I had to consider: This is actually a comedy, and not a rom-com. I better watch it, because there aren’t enough good comedies.

I think this movie has some similarities in feel to Stand By Me, but with tons more profanity. Tons more. A lot of profanity. A lot of fucking profanity. These kids curse more than the fucking Sopranos.

…And that’s part of the charm. It’s so authentic that it almost feels unrealistic… But then I remember just how foul-mouthed some kids were when I was in school. It may actually be a bit over-the-top, but it works. You make the movie about those kids that are over-the-top. A movie about normal kids doing normal things would not be entertaining; it would be a documentary.

Anyway… This was good. Things did not go where I expect. The end hit me a bit abruptly, and it helped to have Carolyn the Movie Whisperer explain it to me a bit.

Speaking of Carolyn, her thoughts:

“This was OK. We expected more of a comedy, but we should have remembered that a review on IMDB compared it to Stand By Me. That is a good comparison. Kids being kids and learning how to grow into themselves. How to cope with other kids’ perceptions of you. How kids who are trying to be “cool” may find themselves in bad situations and over their head.”

Here’s a good review: http://www.larry411.com/post/review_pictures_red_carpet_funeral_kings_world_premiere_sxsw_film_festival

Written & directed by Kevin McManus & Matthew McManus.

Starring Dylan Hartigan (The Stepford Wives) as Andy Gilmour.
Alex Maizus as Charlie Waters.
Jordan Puzzo (uncredited in What’s Your Number?) as David Mason.
Kevin Corrigan (Seven Psychopaths, Pineapple Express, Superbad, The Dictator, Wake Up, Ron Burgundy: The Lost Movie, Detroit Rock City) as Iggy Vannucci.
Michael Delaney (The Dictator, The Onion Movie, 1 ep of Human Giant, 1 ep of Curb Your Enthusiasm, 7 eps of Upright Citizan’s Brigade) as Brendan Hamilton.
Sarah Baldwin (1 ep of The Office) as Amanda Prescott.

Ian B’s review can be found here.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1951133/combined

P.S. HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Trance (2013/I)

Claire: 4.4/5 stars, 8.4/10.
Carolyn: 4.4/5 stars, 8.4/10.
Jesse: Seemed to really like it.
Native ratings: 3.3/5 stars Netflix, 7.0/10 IMDB.

I wasn’t sure about this movie — stealing art? Hypnosis? Not my thing. But then it was pointed out to me by Jesse that this was a Danny Boyle movie. Trainspotting, 127 Hours, Sunshine, 28 Days Later, Slumdog Millionaire…. Completely different movies, and all done very very well (though I didn’t see Slumdog).  I should be watching other Danny Boyle movies! What is Alien Love Triangle? That sounds interesting…

Anyway, this was a good movie.  It kept you on your toes.   I really liked it… I can’t say I loved it, but that’s more because it wasn’t quite my type of movie than because of the movie itself.  But this was a good drama/mystery movie that, when watching, was really hard to guess what was going to happen next.

The hynopsis stuff got somewhat confusing, but that also kept it interesting…  Spoiler talk: Carolyn still doesn’t understand if Franck was hypnotized also…. When the burning car got pushed into the water, why did it flash to Franck waking up in his pool?  She didn’t understand if that was explained ever….  (I never even got to the point of asking that question, oops.)

Regardless… Lots of thrills and twists. Well done, writers.
Also, for the record… Rosario Dawson, full frontal nudity. Even before the full frontal nudity, I was thinking — she’s getting better and better looking as she ages. She is especially hot in this movie.

Starring James McAvoy (Charles Xavier in X-Men: First Class, Mr. Tumnus in The Chronicles Of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe, 1 ep of Band Of Brothers) as Simon, the protaganist.
Vincent Cassel (Black Swan, Oceans 12 & 13, Renegade aka Blueberry, Monsieur Hood in Shrek 1) as Franck, the antaganist.
Rosario Dawson (Sin City, Clerks 2, Kids, Men In Black 2, Death Proof, Grindhouse, Persephone in Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief, The Haunted World Of El Superbeasto) as Elizabeth, the hypnotist.
Wahab Sheikh (Red 2) as Riz.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1924429/combined

 

VIDEO: MOVIES: CARTOONS: EVIEW: Iron Man: Rise Of Technovore (2013)

Claire: 3.6/5 stars, 7.4/10.
Carolyn: 3.4/5 stars, 7.4/10.
Jesse: ??
Native ratings: 3.0/5 stars Netflix, 5.2/10 IMDB.

An animated Iron Man movie is something to look forward to. Unfortunately, this was very anime-ish, which meant storytelling flaws — like most anime. Things seemed to happen a little too conveniently, with so much of a lack of an explanation for why a situation-solving event would happen that it may as well be a deus ex machina.

You’re probably better off watching the Avengers and Iron Man cartoon series than this… However, this has some blood and death, and is a full length movie, and is starring one of the Walking Dead cast members as The Punisher, who plays a fairly prominent role in this movie. These are some of the good aspects. The first act is the strongest, and the movie gets weaker through the deus ex machina-ish ending.

There is still value in this movie, though.

Directed by Hiroshi Hamazaki. Written by Kengo Kaji.

Starring Norman Reedus (Daryl from The Walking Dead, Boondock Saints movies, Pandorum, Mimic) as Frank Castle / The Punisher.
Matthew Mercer (Tygra in the new Thundercats, Resident Evil: Damnation, some video games such as Soul Calibur 5, Call of Duty, Mortal Kombat 9) as Tony Stark / Iron Man.
Eric Bauza (Lord Stingray in Superjail!, Stimpy in Ren & Stimpy Adult Party Cartoon, 4 eps of Adventure Time, 3 eps of Gravity Falls, 1 ep of Ultimate Spider-Man, 1 ep of Iron Man: Armored Adventures, 1 ep of Black Dynamite-TAS) as Ezekiel Stane / Technovore.
Kate Higgins (Scarlet Witch in Wolverine And The X-Men, Yukio in the Wolverine anime, 1 ep of The Legend Of Korra, Barbie in Barbie: Life In The Dreamhouse) as Pepper Potts.
John Eric Bentley (Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen, 3 eps of Tron: Uprising) as Nick Fury.
James C. Mathis III (Black Panther in The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, 4 eps of Star Wars: The Clone Wars) as James ‘Rhodey’ Rhodes / War Machine.
Kari Wahlgren (Gladys in The Life & Times Of Tim, Milan in Good Vibes, 14 eps of The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, 5 eps of Gravity Falls, 2 eps of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Tigress in Kung Fu Panda: Legends Of Awesomeness, 5 eps of Sym-Bionic Titan) as Maria Hill.
Clare Grant (5 eps of Mad, 4 eps of Robot Chicken, 3 eps of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, 1 ep of Warren The Ape) as Natasha Romanoff / Black Widow.
Troy Baker (Hawkeye in Marvel’s Avengers Assemble, Yellowjacket in The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, Loki and Hawkeye in Ultimate Spider-Man, 6 eps of the X-Men anime, and 1 ep of the Wolverine anime) as Clint Barton / Hawkeye / J.A.R.V.I.S..
JB Blanc (Barry Goodman in Breaking Bad, 8 eps of the Wolverine anime, 2 eps of the Iron Man anime, 3 eps of Black Panther, 5 eps of The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes) as Obadiah Stane.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2654124/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: The Big Hit (1998)

Claire: 4.2/5 stars, 8.1/10.
Carolyn: 3.6/5 stars, 7.0/10.
Native ratings: 3.4/5 stars Netflix, 5.9/10 IMDB.

A comedy-crime-romance, with the comedy coming first. It was Carolyn’s first time seeing this movie, but Claire had already seen it in the theater in 1998 when it came out.

The chick they kidnap is China Chow. She is 3/4 Chinese, 1/4 German. Check out her IMDB pictures. Beautiful.

Carolyn says: “It was entertaining. I enjoyed it. The vomit scene was disgusting, but also pretty funny.”

Almost all movie covers and posters at the video rental store are from Troma Entertainment. And that says a bit about this movie’s penchant for the ridiculous. What other movie has ever employed a TraceBuster-Buster-Buster?!

You know what would make people not want to watch this movie? The fact that the screenplay was written by the same writer as the Dragonball:Evolution writer.

But you know why people SHOULD watch this movie? Because it’s ridiculous, funny, and unique. I’m glad I watched this a 2nd time, a treatment the majority of the movies I watch do not receive.

“Is this the movie with the disturbing chicken-feeling scene?” Yes, yes it is.

“Is this the movie with the car chasing the guy… In the middle of the woods?” Yes, yes it is.

People are trying to say this is in the same vein as In Bruges, The Transporter, True Romance, Shoot ‘Em Up, Grosse Point Blank, Demolition Man, Last Action Hero, Face Off, or the A-Team movie. THEY’RE WRONG. This movie is better than 80% of the ones I just listed. And funnier than 100%.

It’s cheesy as hell. It’s “bad” by many measures. But I REALLY REALLY LIKE this movie!

Directed by Kirk Wong (we haven’t seen his other movies, and he mostly does international stuff).
written by Ben Ramsey (Dragonball: Evolution).

Starring Mark Wahlberg (Ted, Date Night, The Happening, I Heart Huckabees, Planet Of The Apes) as Melvin Smiley.
Lou Diamond Phillips (Young Guns, 2 eps of 24, 1 ep of American Dad) as Cisco.
Christina Applegate (Kelly from Married With Children, Veronica in the Anchorman movies, Mars Attacks!, Jesse, Samantha Who?) as Pam Shulman.
Avery Brooks (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, 1 ep of Gargoyles) as Paris.
Bokeem Woodbine (The Host, Black Dynamite, Total Recall remake) as Crunch.
Antonio Sabato Jr. (The Three Stooges, 260 eps of The Bold And The Beautiful) as Vince.
China Chow (Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, 1 ep of That 70’s Show) as Keiko Nishi.
Lainie Kazan (You Don’t Mess With The Zohan, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, Harry & The Hendersons, Beaches, The Journey Of Natty Gann) as Jeanne Shulman, Pam’s mom.
Elliott Gould (Jack Geller in Friends, Ocean’s Eleven movies, Contagion, 1 ep of The Life & Times Of Tim) as Morton Shulman, Pam’s dad.
Sab Shimono (Uncle in Jackie Chan Adventures, Waterworld, The Shadow, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3, 6 eps of Avatar: The Last Airbender, 3 eps of Samurai Jack, 2 eps of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, 1 ep of The Boondocks, 1 ep of Max Headroom) as Jiro Nishi.
Lela Rochon (13 eps of The Wayans Bros.) as Chantel.
Danny Smith (Senior Trip, The Three Stooges, 3 eps of Detentionaire) as Video Store Kid.
Joshua Peace (Interrogation Surveillance Tech in Red) as Lance.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0120609/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Red (2010)

4/5 stars, 8/10 from both of us.

This was pretty good. It was more action than comedy, but the comedy was there. Not quite a 100%-serious movie. John Malkovich’s character was the comic relief. Imagine that.

That DC Comics had its name attached to the credits surprised us. We didn’t know this was a comic book movie. That really added to things. And helped explain the feel. Retired CIA operative being forced to go rogue. Respect for your elders. It works, and makes a fun movie. Nothing unique, but fun nonetheless. I’ll watch the sequels.

Directed by Robert Schwentke (The Time Traveler’s Wife).
written by Jon Hoeber (we haven’t seen his other movies) & Erich Hoeber (we haven’t seen his other movies).

Starring Bruce Willis as Frank Moses.
Morgan Freeman as Joe Matheson.
John Malkovich as Marvin Boggs. Originally it was gonna be John C. Reilly!!!
Mary-Louise Parker (Nancy Botwin from Weeds, The Spiderwick Chronicles, Fried Green Tomatoes) as Sarah Ross.
Also Julian McMahon (Christian Troy from Nip/Tuck, Dr. Doom in the Fantastic 4 movies) as vice president Robert Stanton.

Karl Urban (Judge Dredd from Dredd, Bones in the Star Trek reboots, Eomer in the Lord Of The Rings movies, Julius Caesar in Xena: Warrior Princess, 2 eps of Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, Ghost Ship, The Chronicles Of Riddick, The Bourne Supremacy) as William Cooper, the CIA operative ordered to bring in Frank Moses.
Ernest Borgnine (doorman in The Single Guy, Gattaca, BASEketball, Renegade aka Blueberry, Mermaid Man in Spongebob Squarepants) as Henry, The Records Keeper.
Chris Owens (The Incredible Hulk (2008), 13 eps of The X-Files, additional voices in Saw 6 and Saw 7) as Hanged Man.
Jaqueline Fleming (Harriet Tubman in Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) as Marna.
Jefferson Brown (Silent Hill: Revelation 3D) as Fred.
Audrey Wasilewski (3 eps of Sym-Bionic Titan, 3 eps of Family Guy, Rosie O’Donnell in Queer Duck: The Movie) as Businesswoman.
James Remar (Harry Morgan in Dexter, Django Unchained, Narrator in The FP. X-Men: First Class, Transformers: Dark Of The Moon, Pineapple Express, Ratatouille, 4 eps of Justice League, The Girl Next Door) as Gabriel Singer.
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 Simonov.
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.
Richard Dreyfuss (4 eps of Weeds, Jaws, Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, James And The Giant Peach) as Alexander Dunning.
Rebecca Pidgeon (we haven’t seen her stuff) as Cynthia Wilkes, the CIA boss.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1245526/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: CARTOONS: REVIEW: Superman: Unbound (2013)

Claire: 4.4/5 stars, 8.6/10.
Carolyn: 4.6/5 stars, 8.6/10.
Native ratings: 3.7/5 stars Netflix, 6.4/10 IMDB.

This one was still good, but it didn’t seem as good as the last movies. This wasn’t Bruce Timm’s work.

But it’s still pretty damn good, because we love us some superhero cartoons! Especially ones not made for TV.

That being said… How many times do we have to watch Superman fight off Braniac? It seems to have happened like 5 times now. I’m getting a bit tired of it.

This was still pretty solid, though.

Directed by James Tucker (5 eps of Batman Beyond, 5 eps of Static Shock, 4 eps of Legion Of Super Heroes).
Written by Bob Goodman (Batman: The Dark Knight Returns 1&2, 51 eps of Batman Beyond, 51 eps of Superman, 2 eps of The Batman, 4 eps of Justice League, 8 eps of The Zeta Project)

Matt Bomer (In Time) as Superman / Clark Kent.
Stana Katic (3 eps of 24, 2 eps of Heroes) as Lois Lane.
John Noble (The Dragon Spirit in The Last Airbender movie, 100 eps of Fringe, 3 eps of Transformers Prime, 3 eps of 24) as Brainiac.
Molly C. Quinn (105 eps of Castle, Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story) as Supergirl / Kara Zor-El.
Diedrich Bader (Batman in Batman: The Brave And The Bold, Guy Gardner in The Green Lantern-TAS, Kraven The Hunter in Ultimate Spider-Man, 2 eps of Gravity Falls, 3 eps of King Of The Hill) as Steve Lombard.
Jason Beghe (X-Men: First Class, Thelma & Louise, Maid To Order) as Terrorist Leader.
Frances Conroy (the mom from Six Feet Under, The Wicker Man remake) as Ma Kent.
Melissa Disney (Blade in Batman Beyond) as Thara.
Alexander Gould (Shane Botwin from Weeds, 1 ep of The Life & Times Of Tim) as Jimmy Olsen.
Sirena Irwin (Persephone in Striperella, 3 eps of Adventure Time, 80 eps of Spongebob Squarepants, 3 eps of Batman: The Brave And The Bold) as Alura.
Andrea Romano (voice actress casting director) as News Anchor #2 / Superman‘s Ship.
Stephen Root (Bill Dauterive in King Of The Hill, Office Space, NewsRadio, Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, The Men Who Stare At Goats, Penguin in Batman: The Brave And The Bold, 4 eps of Gravity Falls, 2 eps of The Legend Of Korra, 1 ep of the new Thundercats) as Zor-El.
Wade Williams (Harvey Dent in Batman: The Dark Knight Returns – Part 1, Black Mask in Batman: Under The Red Hood, The Dark Knight Rises) as Perry White.
Michael-Leon Wooley (Twayne Boneraper in Ugly Americans, 2 eps of Batman: The Brave And The Bold, 1 ep of Delocated) as Ron Troupe.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2617456/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Vampires Anonymous (2003)

Claire: 2.8/5 stars, 5.8/10.
Carolyn: 2.6/5 stars, 5.6/10.
Native ratings: 2.8/5 stars Netflix, 5.1/10 IMDB.

A vampire joins a 12-step program to stop drinking human blood (and use animal blood instead). Good premise…though tainted by the Twilight stigma.

Anyway, this was pretty generic. The one thing it had going for it was that it was a comedy. However, it was only OK, and not that good.
It was somewhat funny, but not that much.
The romance angle of the romantic comedy grew to overtake the comedy, like with most romantic comedies. That’s bad.
But not quite as much as the average rom-com; That’s good.
It wasn’t even widescreen, it was fullscreen!
Lots of booms! The most booms I’ve ever seen in a movie. Also the furthest into the screen I’ve ever seen a boom go in any movie.
Some bad editing.
Bad filmstock.
Sometimes unbelievable plot — even for a movie about vampires.
Still…. It did have laughs. A vampire-loving comedy-completist might want to check this out.

Directed by Michael Keller (he directed some 4 “Expert Insight” things, whatever those are…), written by J.P. Srinivasan (the only thing he’s written) and Michael Keller.

Paul Popowich (1 ep of Dark Angel) as Vic Weller.
Michael Madsen (Mr. Blonde in Reservoir Dogs, Scary Movie 4, Kill Bill: Vol 1, Not Another Not Another Movie, 4 eps of 24, 1 ep of Bob’s Burgers) as Geno.
Nicole Forester (298 eps of Guiding Light, Jack Reacher (action movie like Parker that we haven’t seen)) as Maggie Miller, the love interest.
Judith Scott (1 ep of Frasier, 1 ep of 24) as Christine, the VA moderator.
Carolyn Lawrence (Orel in Moral Orel, Spongebob Squarepants, Resident Evil, 1 ep of Caroline In The City) as Penelope. She must have been the blonde chick from the VA group.
Michelle Stafford (1468 eps of The Young & Restless, and she plays *THAT SAME CHARACTER* from Young & Restless in the movie Parker [WTF]) as Taffeta Munro, the vampire slayer.
John Boyd West (21 Grams) as Jimmy.

So yes. There are 2 women in this movie who were in hundreds of episodes of soaps, and then one 2013 action movie each: Parker and Jack Reacher. What The Fuck.

Another, personal coincidence: The night we watched this movie, Carolyn was reading her book (Discworld#24: The Fifth Elephant) and there was a reformed Vampire who talked about how she was addicted to blood and how she only drank animal blood now. Hmm, from the imdb message boards: “I haven’t seen the film but it sounds exactly like the vampire in Terry Pratchett‘s Discworld novel ‘The Truth’.” Carolyn hasn’t read that one yet. Oh, that is #25, so that will be the next one she reads. Go figure. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0197996/board/flat/4225539

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0197996/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Sightseers (2012)

Clio: 2.3/5 stars, 4.4/10.
Carolyn: 2.0/5 stars, 4.4/10.
Native ratings: 3.4/5 stars Netflix, 6.6/10 IMDB.

Bonnie & Clyde meets Dumb & Dumber? If I’d known this was British, I might have [correctly] decided to skip this one. British comedies are rarely as funny. Awkward, subtle, dry humor is indeed hilarious, but overt, in-your-face, ridiculous humor is more hilarious.

This movie wasn’t that good.  We thought it would be funnier, but it was mostly just awkward and creepy.  None of the characters were likeable or relateable — which is okay — but the characters were one of many aspects of the movie that just didn’t do anything for us.  It was slightly interesting at times, but mostly pointless.

Girl meets boy. Roadtrip. Girl finds out boy is serial killer. Girl accepts boy.  That’s the whole movie. Well, there’s some interesting aspects I’m not sharing — and some slight twists that you wouldn’t expect… But for the most part, this is not a comedy. This is just a set of fucked up circumstances that conclude with no more message or afterthought than nihilism itself.

Directed by Ben Wheatley. Written by Steve Oram and Alice Lowe.
Starring the movie’s own writers: Alice Lowe (Hot Fuzz) as Tina and Steve Oram (1 ep of Life’s Too Short, 1 ep of The Increasingly Poor Decisions Of Todd Margaret) as Chris.
Jonathan Aris (Gulliver’s Travels, 1 ep of Bob & Margaret–how weird) as Ian.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2023690/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: CARTOONS: SHOWS: REVIEW: Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008)

Clio: 3.6/5 stars, 7/10.
Carolyn: 3.6/5 stars, 7/10.
Native ratings: 3.5/5 stars Netflix, 5.6/10 IMDB.

We forgot to watch the pilot movie to The Clone Wars cartoon series! For the uninformed, Clone Wars is the the CGI animated TV series that’s been airing since 2008. It chronicles the period of time between Episode 2 and Episode 3 of the Star Wars movies. We recently finished the last season of Clone Wars, and decided to go ahead and watch the introductory movie — since apparently we are doing things backwards. (And no, we haven’t seen the Clone Wars animated shorts by Dexter’s Lab/Samurai Jack animator Genndy Tartakovsky, which precede this movie that precedes the series we watched. Maybe we’ll do that next.)

This was a great introduction to the show. This seemed better than the 1st season of the actual show. We didn’t really like the first season all that much, and the “roger roger” droids were really annoying and juvenile. We barely slogged through the 2nd season. By the 3rd season we were begrudgingly admitting this series’s awesomeness, but we still were into it at a lower level than most other shows, procrastinating so much that when we watched Season 4, season 5 started a mere week after we finished. But here’s the kicker: We watched Season 4 in like a week. A season at a time, this series goes down MUCH better. It got totally worth it. The ending of season 5 is a shocker. We’ve also gotten to enjoy many side episodes, for example an episode about only the droids. There are some pretty epic lightsabre battles in the series, like watching Dooku go toe to toe with Darth Maul.

As bad as the first season is, I strongly recommend any Star Wars fan to slog through and watch all 5 seasons of The Clone Wars — plus the remaining bits that are still to be released. (New animation has stopped, but they’re still going to release some stuff to wrap it all up.)

But perhaps, unlike us, you should watch this movie/pilot first.

Starring Matt Lanter (Harry Osborn in Ultimate Spider-Man, Brody Mitchum in Heroes) as Anakin Skywalker (voice).
Ashley Eckstein (8 episodes of That’s So Raven) as Ahsoka Tano (voice).
James Arnold Taylor (Wooldoor Sockbat in Drawn Together, Green Arrow in Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 1, 4 eps of Young Justice) as Obi-Wan Kenobi / 4-A7 / Medical Droid (voice).
Dee Bradley Baker (The new Thundercats, Adventure Time, Avatar The Last Airbender, Ultimate Spider-Man, Waddles the pig in Gravity Falls, and many more) as Clone Troopers / Captain Rex / Cody / Fox (voice).
Tom Kane (Professor Utonium in The Powerpuff Girls, Magneto in Wolverine And The X-Men, and much more) as Yoda / Narrator / Admiral Yularen (voice).
Ian Abercrombie (Mr. Pitt in Seinfeld, Green Lantern-TAS) as Chancellor Palpatine / Darth Sidious (voice).
Kevin Michael Richardson as Jabba the Hutt (voice).
Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury in the Marvel movies, Django Unchained, Snakes On A Plane) as Mace Windu (voice).
Christopher Lee (Saruman in the Lord Of The Rings movies, Death in The Color Of Magic, The Golden Compass) as Count Dooku (voice).

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1185834/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Upstream Color (2013)

Clio: 1.4/5 stars, 3.6/10.
Carolyn: 1.6/5 stars, 4/10.
Native ratings: 3.4/5 stars Netflix, 6.8/10 IMDB.

Written, directed, and starring Shane Carruth, the brilliant director of Primer. And that’s why we watched this.

And damn, what a shock. Primer may be the most confusing time-travel movie of all time, but this movie is way less coherent, and way more confusing!

I sum it up as: “That movie was awful and I have no idea what it was really about.” Carolyn agrees.

Basically, this movie jumps between 4 different substories a LOT. It’s similar to Cloud Atlas in that style, except lacking the coherence of Cloud Atlas (which continually jumped between 6 different stories in 6 different time periods).

It’s actually somewhat skillfully crafted. This image illustrates the concepts in this movie, and how the scenes fed into each other. And in retrospect, it all makes sense: http://www.flickr.com/photos/30585110@N04/8700138325/in/photostream/

…But when it’s so obtuse that the two of us couldn’t even piece that together… That makes it less enjoyable. Carolyn pieced together maybe 25% of it, but Clio pieced together close to 0% of it.

It helps if you are aware of worm charming (wiki that). I wasn’t.

Carolyn’s thoughts:

This movie was pretty bad. It did not compare to Primer. It started out interesting enough, but it got confusing pretty quick. Halfway through, we almost aborted, but then it seemed to get more interesting (with the shared memories between the two characters.) So we kept going, and then it STILL didn’t get good. Eventually, we put it at 1.5X, then 2.0X speed, and we didn’t feel like we missed much by speeding through the ending. IT WAS STILL SLOW, even at double-speed. Unsatisfyingly slow. It just left me unsatisfied.

Clio sent me this this morning: http://briansfinas.com/review-of-shane-carruths-upstream-color/ That review says I’m too dumb to enjoy this movie. Thanks, reviewer, that makes me feel wonderful. Anyway, based on those 2 paragraphs of summary of what happened, I had gotten all that, but there are pieces in between that are still missing.

It didn’t make any sense to me how they were able to find the pig guy so they can free the pigs. (This review says they were able to track him down because they were listening to his music…. That still doesn’t make sense to me.) I mean, it didn’t make any sense how she even went to the pig guy to have the worm extracted in the first place… it was just so confusing, drawn out… there were interesting moments (such as the shared childhood memories), but nothing really solid that this movie could stand on.

Also, I guess you don’t need real actors when there is hardly any dialogue.

Written & directed by Shane Carruth (Primer)

Starring Amy Seimetz (she’s in a lot of stuff, but we’ve only seen Wristcutters: A Love Story) as Kris.
Shane Carruth (the writer & director, and Aaron in Primer) as Jeff.
Andrew Sensenig (also in a bunch of stuff we haven’t seen) as The Sampler.
Thiago Martins (some nobody who has only been in 2 movies (including this one) and 1 ep of a TV show) as Thief.
Kathy Carruth (a caterer for the movie Primer, and other than that, this and Primer are her only movies. And she did craft service in this movie) as Orchid Mother.
Meredith Burke (she’s a co-producer in 3 movies, and this is her only acting gig) as Orchid Daughter.
Andreon Watson (absolutely nothing except for this movie) as Peter.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2084989/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Once Bitten (1985) [vampires] [Jim Carrey]

Clio: 3/5 stars, 6/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 6/10.
Native ratings: 3.0/5 stars Netflix, 5.1/10 IMDB.

It was a light-hearted 80’s movie, completely agreeing with an IMDB review we had read. It basically stated that this movie was not great, and wouldn’t make you laugh out loud much, but that it was still funny and amusing and worth watching ONCE.

Carolyn had heard of it, but didn’t think she had seen it until the library scene at the end.

Jim Carrey was good in this, but not great. There were definitely hints of Jim Carrey’s later, future greatness. He had a few moments of physical comedy that would later become components of his ongoing wacky shtick. It was interesting to see him pre-fame.

Also: Both famous ex-model Lauren Hutton, and lesser-known Karen Kopins were great women to watch in a movie. A Ginger and a Mary-Anne, if you will… Too bad Kopins stopped acting.

 

  • Jeremy: I remember this movie. It was okay, but it was no Earth Girls Are Easy.
     
  • Parthena: I think before I saw Vampire’s Kiss I had confused that movie with this one….and was, um, surprised when I realized how dark Vampire’s Kiss was. 

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0089730/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: The Host (2013)

Clio: 4.6/5 stars, 8.6/10.
Carolyn: 5/5 stars, 9/10.
Jesse: 3.4/5 stars, 7/10.
Evan: 4.1/5 stars, 8/10.
Native ratings: 3.7/5 stars Netflix, /10 IMDB.

Written & directed by Andrew Niccol, which had me hyped up to see the movie! We’ve seen every movie he’s directed (Gattaca, Lord Of War, In Time, S1m0ne), and also half the movies he wrote-but-didn’t-direct (The Truman Show, but not The Terminal). It is all excellent stuff, though we enjoyed some (In Time) more than others (Lord Of War, S1m0ne).

This movie, strangely, is based on a novel by Stephenie Meyer, the woman who wrote the Twilight Trilogy. Really?? This knowledge alone causes a lot of people to hate on the movie without watching it. Such sheep behavior is sad to witness.

This is Twilight-esque in the sense that teen romance is inserted into a genre that it is not normally so prevalent in. Is that a crime? Is mixing genres a crime? Should an action movie have no comedy? Should a comedy movie have no romance? Should a horror movie have no comedy?

So yes, this is a sci-fi movie about parasitic symbiotes taking over the planet by taking our bodies from us, but it is focused more on a few specific characters, and the love story that ties them together. There are no explosions or big gun fights. It’s about a race taking over humans and controlling them. They aim to live along with us and bring us further than we would get left to our own devices, but they also basically genocide us by killing our consciousnesses and replacing them with their own.

But some of us resist. The alien parasite hears the voice of the original human in their mind. It’s rare. And that is the case here.

Apparently a lot of people just reduce that to “watching a girl talk to herself”, which is a sad reducto absurdum applied to an idea that is actually far more interesting than that. I think it requires a litte bit of empathy that some people don’t have. I don’t find it a valid complaint.

There is REALLY a lot of hate here. The anti-Stephanie Meyer bandwagon is kind of pathetic. It’s like they are scared that someone might like something she’s involved in, because it would invalidate their own opinions — which are often themselves based on groupthink and expressed by people who have never seen one of her movies or read one of her books.

Fuck those guys. This was a great sci-fi, and had an unexpectedly interesting emotional/relationship angle, that most sci-fi movies don’t have. Good for Andrew Niccol — keeping his track record intact. Good for Stephanie Meyer — improving her track record, which needs it.

Evan: “I really liked the concepts and the story was good, but I’m going to have to knock it down a bit for the cheesy teen-movie moments.”

Saoirse Ronan (Hanna from Hanna, the voice of Arriety in The Secret World of Arrietty) as Melanie Stryder / Wanda.
Diane Kruger (Adult Anna in Mr. Nobody, Inglourious Basterds, National Treasure, Helen in Troy) as The Seeker / Lacey.
Chandler Canterbury (Repo Men, Benjamin as age 8 in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) as Jamie, Melanie’s little brother.
Jake Abel (Luke in Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief) as Ian O’Shea, [highlight for spoilers] Wanda’s love interest.
Max Irons (Dorian Gray, 9 eps of The White Queen) as Jared Howem, Melanie’s boyfriend.
William Hurt (The Village, The Incredible Hulk, Dark City) as Jeb, Melanie’s uncle.
Frances Fisher (Sex & Death 101, 1 ep of Childrens Hospital) as Maggie, Melanie’s aunt.
Scott Lawrence (The Social Network, Avatar, Cloverfield, Star Trek Into Darkness, 2 eps of 24, Darth Vader in a bunch of Star Wars video games) as Doc.
Rachel Roberts (Simone in S1m0ne, In Time) as Soul Fleur.
Marcus Lyle Brown (Snatched) as Healer Fords.
J.D. Evermore (Django Unchained) as Trevor Stryder.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1517260/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Spring Breakers (2012)

Clio: 3.4/5 stars, 7.6/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 7/10.
Jesse: 3/5 stars, 7/10.
Native ratings: 3.7/5 stars Netflix, 5.9/10 IMDB.

Written & directed by Harmony Korine (Kids, Gummo, Julien Donkey-Boy), but to tell the truth, this movie is, to me, exactly what it would be like if Harmony Korine directed a Gregg Araki movie — especially something from Araki’s Teen Apocalypse trilogy (Totally Fucked Up, Nowhere, The Doom Generation). The feel of this movie REALLY reminded me of the fatalistic feeling found in Aaraki’s work.

Compared to Korine’s other work, this had wayyyyy more structure than Gummo. Korine has matured, and his movies now actually have specific plots.

Carolyn thought it was somewhat drawn out with the monologues and repeating phrases. “But it seemed right when I would start to get actively annoyed, they would finally move on.” I really disagree with that critique.

Plotwise, It’s worth watching. An interesting plot that captures the feel of Spring Break, but then diverges into a totally different, crime-related angle. And a strange romance — of sorts. “You guys are my soulmates.”

Ultimately, it is entertaining yet artsy at the same time. Which is what I’d expect.

Also: Bonus points My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic appearing on screen TWICE during this movie! The Elements Of Harmony..Korine!

Outlaw Vern’s got a good review of the movie, which is what caused us to watch it: http://www.outlawvern.com/2013/03/26/spring-breakers/

Starring:
A barely-recognizable James Franco (127 Hours, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, Oz in Oz The Great And Powerful, Date Night, Pineapple Express, Harry Osborn in the Spider-Man movies) as Alien.
Selena Gomez (Justin Bieber’s girlfriend, Barney & Friends, Wizards Of Waverly Place) as Faith (the brunette).
Vanessa Hudgens (High School Musical, Sucker Punch) as Candy. I think she’s better as a blonde.
Ashley Benson (13 Going On 30, Days Of Our Lives, 75 Pretty Little Liars, dated Justin Bieber’s “swagger coach”) as Brit (the other blonde).
Rachel Korine (Harmony Korine’s wife) as Cotty (the pink-haired one).
Heather Morris (Glee) as Bess.
Real-life rapper Gucci Mane as Archie, Alien‘s rival.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2101441/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Black Death (2010)

Clio: 2.4/5 stars, 4.6/10.
Carolyn: 2.4/5 stars, 5.6/10.
Jesse: 2.4/5 stars.
Native ratings: 3.4/5 stars Netflix, 6.4/10 IMDB.

This was recommended to me. It held promise, but just wasn’t that special. It was way, way too slow (an hour passed without much happening), relyed too much on mood over substance, and kind of droned on.

Jesse seemed to like it about half-way through, but then by the end he had changed his mind and thought he didn’t like it.

It wasn’t very action-packed, except for a few brief, awesomely visceral fight scenes.

Moreso at the beginning, it reminded me of the Dreamweaver album’s plot, which filled me with naive, inspired promise, but ultimately things didn’t go in the direction I’d hoped.

The movie does have a few neat structural tricks up its sleeve.

But still. I’d rather have my time back. I was (unfortunately) reminded of Valhalla Rising.

Directed by Christopher Smith (who directed and wrote Triangle, which WAS FUCKING AMAZING).
Written by Dario Poloni.

Starring Eddie Redmayne (8 eps of The Pillars Of Earth) as Osmund.
Sean Bean (Game Of Thrones, Boromir in Lord Of The Rings, Zeus in Percy Jackson, Silent Hill, Troy, Mirror Mirror) as Ulrich, the emissary of the bishop.
John Lynch (Shades [the one who dropped acid] from the movie Hardware!!!!!!) as Wolfstan, the older soldier who survived to the end and was also the narrator.
Carice Van Houten (Game Of Thrones, Carol from Repo Men) as Langiva (anagram for vaginal?!), the necromancer.
David Warner (Archmage in Gargoyles, Ra’s Al Ghul in Batman, In The Mouth Of Madness, Lord Downey in Hogfather, Sweeney Todd, Avatar, 9 eps of Men In Black: The Series) as Abbot.
Kimberley Nixon as Averill, the Osmund’s girlfriend.
Emun Elliott (Prometheus) as Swire.
Johnny Harris (Snow White And The Huntsman, Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, Dorian Gray) as Mold.
Andy Nyman (1 ep of Holliston, Death At A Funeral) as Dalywag.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1181791/combined

VIDEO: MOVIES: REVIEW: Parker (2013)

Clio: 3/5 stars, 6/10.
Carolyn: 3/5 stars, 6/10.
Native ratings: 3.5/5 stars Netflix, 6.1/10 IMDB.

Generic Jason Statham movie.  It was OK, but not as good as Crank or The Transporter.  It was about the action, not the story, and the action wasn’t *that* special.

Directed by Taylor Hackford (The Devil’s Advocate).
Written by John J. McLaughlin (writer of Black Swan, 3 eps of Carnivale).

Based on a novel by Donald E. Westlake. The 6th movie to be based on the same character, but only the first one to actually call him Parker! He was actually “Porter” in Payback!

Starring Jason Statham (Crank, Transporter, The Expendables, Death Race, Snatch, Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels) as Parker.
Jennifer Lopez as Leslie Rodgers.

Michael Chiklis (Ben Grimm in the Fantastic Four movies, 4 eps of Family Guy, voice in the English version of Spirited Away, 1 ep of Roughnecks: The Starship Troopers Chronicles) as Melander.
Wendell Pierce (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2, 1 ep of Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!, 2 eps of God, the Devil and Bob) as Carlson.
Clifton Collins Jr. (we *just* saw him in The FP the previous night, Rules Of Attraction, Crank 2, Star Trek (2009), Traffic, Scott Pilgrim Vs The World) as Ross.
Bobby Cannavale (Fake Superman in Movie 43, The Ten, Snakes On A Plane, 3 eps of Six Feet Under, ) as Jake Fernandez.
Patti LuPone (Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd, Heist, 7 eps of Oz) as Ascension.
Nick Nolte (Tropic Thunder, Hotel Rwanda, 48 Hours) as Hurley.
Daniel Bernhardt (Agent Johnson in The Matrix 2: The Matrix Reloaded) as Kroll.
Jon Eyez (Django Unchained) as Jack.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1904996/combined

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