VIDEO: MOVIE: REVIEW: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (2012)

Clint: 5/5 stars, 8/10. Carolyn: 4/5 stars, 9/10.

Native rating: 4.5/5 stars, 6.0/10.

Produced in part by Tim Burton, directed by Timur Bekmambetov —  the same director as Night Watch and Day Watch — so he already has experience with awesomely-visual surreal worlds involving vampires. Very good choice. I’m glad this guy is doing English-language movies now.

This was an awesome concept. I pretty much instantly knew from the title alone that I would love this movie.

But then… Even despite all that… It completely blew away my expectations. Way more than I thought, and I already thought I’d love it.

I did not catch on that Abe’s wife was Ramona Flowers from Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World.

Anyway… Abe Lincoln was already pretty awesome, and this movie made him even cooler than before. Doesn’t matter if it’s fiction. This stoked simultaneous feelings that no other movie has ever stoked before. Great job!

This also wins the award for “best movie idea produced by manatees” (that’s a South Park Vs. Family Guy reference, in case you missed it).

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1611224/

VIDEO: MOVIE: REVIEW: Safety Not Guaranteed (2012)

Clint: 3/5 stars, Carolyn: 4/5 stars, both: 7/10.
Native rating: 7.2/10 IMDB, 3.5 stars on Netflix.
So for once, we’re in agreement with the general public.

We’re a sucker for time travel movies, and Aubrey Plaza is awesome in her own way as well… Did you know she’s “like that” in part, possibly, because she had a stroke right before her acting career started? Who knows?

Anyway, because we’re a sucker for time travel movies, this was an obvious choice once I saw a little blurb on it in Rolling Stone magazine.

It turned out to not really be a comedy so much as a romance movie with an interesting sci-fi-based perspective…. But lacking much real sci-fi.

So it was a bit disappointing in that it was kind of a bait and switch into a romance movie with SOME adventure and SOME comedy.

Still interesting, but a few complaints: The agents weren’t really explained/fleshed out as much or as realistically as they could be… And the ending could have maybe had some more exposition. Even the subplot (the paid reporter and his old blonde-turned-redhead squeeze) story didn’t really conclude well enough. . I don’t think that was the end of it — and that kind of annoys me too.

But it was still quite interesting and entertaining. And Aubrey Plaza is awesomely quirky, showing more of a range here than she’s typically been allowed in past roles.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1862079/

VIDEO: MOVIE: REVIEW: Men In Black 3 (2012)

We’re fans of the first 2 movies AND the animated series (which is friggin’ awesome), so of course we’d be watching this!

Carolyn: 5/5 stars, 9/10.
Clint: 4.4/5 stars, 8.4/10. Maybe I should give this 5 stars. It was pretty awesome. I love time travel.
Parthena: 4/5 stars, 8/10.
Eli: 4/5 stars, 7/10.
Native ratings: Netflix: 4/5 stars, IMDB 7.0/10.

Carolyn: I’m a sucker for Men In Black, and I enjoyed it immensely.

Parthena: I really really liked the movie, but one tiny thing I noticed- in the beginning, when Agent J went to the young guy in the store to get the time-travel device, the guy shouldn’t have acted surprised to see those weird jelly-fish things on the tvs in the background- he seemed surprised, and said something like, “Oh, yeah, I guess me sending Boris back did change things,”etc.  But if Boris had succeeded in changing the entire timeline, Dude in Store would have no idea that anything had ever been different than the way it currently was-hopefully that makes sense.  Not a huge deal but just a tiny timeline-continuity thing that I noticed. :)

Eli: I really enjoyed it.  Surprising for a third in the series.

Matthew: It was pretty good. The whole time travel thing was confusing to both Julie and I, but those types of situations in movies always seem to be a little hard to follow. Overall it was a good, fun experience. It didn’t really lag or drag on, it was pretty smooth flowing throughout. There were some holes in the plot, like what happened to those motorcycle type things they were riding and the Ford Galaxie that was on fire? How did the bad guy get from the moon to earth? Did he just swim through space? Whatever, it was still fun.

Julie: I liked the movie. I did like the fact that I didn’t have to have seen the first two to figure out what was happening. I really hate when movies in a series require you to have seen all the previous ones to follow the plot.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1409024/

VIDEO: MOVIE: REVIEW: Starship Troopers: Invasion (2012) (anim)

3/5 stars, 7/10 from the both of us.
Native rating: Netflix 3.2/5 stars, IMDB 5.8/10.

A nice coda to the movies & the Roughnecks animated series.

This really opens up possibilities for the story to progress much further than it ever has… But will we ever see anything out of the Starship Troopers franchise again?

After watching all 3 movies, the 40 episodes of the Roughnecks cgi series, and even the shitty anime version — how much more steam can Starship Troopers have?

Time for a reboot?

Hell no, I’d much rather then continue the story further, beyond the realm the books ever went to.

Actually… Instead of making this fucking movie, they should have concluded the final unfinished story arc of the Roughnecks series. In a way, this movie is like spitting in our faces, spitefully saying “we could have finished Rougnecks, but no, fuck you, we’ll make this instead”.

But it’s still better than nothing. And to many, better than Starship Troopers 2 & 3.

But not to us — we LIKED the sequels, especially Starship Troopers 3.

I would like to know more.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2085930/

VIDEO: MOVIE: REVIEW: The Campaign (2012)

4/5 stars, 8/10 from both of us.
Native rating: 3.5/5 stars Netflix, 6.3/10 IMDB.

Yea, pretty frickin’ funny! Great cast.

The political commentary kind of held the comedy back a bit, but that’s an okay price to pay to add political awesomeness to comedic awesomeness.

After all, it is election season.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1790886/

VIDEO: MOVIE: REVIEW: Snow White And The Huntsman (2012)

Carolyn: 4/5 stars, 8/10.
Parthena: 4/5 stars, 7/10 (was 4.4/5 stars, 8/10 but then she decided to lower it).
Clint: 3/5 stars, 8/10.
Eli: 3/5 stars, 6/10.
Native rating: 3.7/5 stars, 6.4/10.

I found this to be quite a serviceable remake. Certainly more enjoyable than a bunch of gay Disney characters singing and whistling, and the production was pretty awesome.

Charlize Theron was great as the wicked witch, though the idea that Kristen Stewart could ever be fairer than her was less believable than the entire fantasy world this took place in :)

It was also interesting how they used CGI to have dwarves played by normal-sized actors — I totally recognized Nick Frost and Ian McShane. I am sure Warwick Davis was livid! [UPDATE: Just read the trivia, and Warwick Davis *WAS* pissed! And made a public statement!]

Anyway.. Nice to see a familiar fantasy story and not have it be totally juvenile.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1735898/

VIDEO: MOVIE: REVIEW: Audition (1999) (Japan)

3/5 stars from Clint, 2/5 stars from Carolyn.
5/10 from both of us.
7.3/10 from IMDB in general.

“Well… That escalated quickly.”

Not quite as hardcore of a movie as I was expecting from all the talk of this being one of the most traumatizing movies in all of cinema.

It was slow for my taste, and I didn’t care for it too much, except for the final “payoff” scene, which even then was not all that.

Saw, Hostel… You’ve been outdone, Audition. You being Japanese just made you more boring, not more profound.

The fake-out was decent, but only enough to redeem you back up to 5/10.

LINK URL: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0235198/