Tuesday, June 14, 2011
When discussing it with my colleagues, Chad and my brother in law kept saying how awesome it was.
Chad: That’s cause it was really awesome!
I just couldn’t get myself that enthused. All I could come up with was how much it reminded me of Superman 2. Thor was so tough, yet half the movie he didn’t have his powers and was taken down by stun guns, sedatives, and probably terrible one liners as well. Now while I love a great movie, I am able to turn my brain off and indulge in mindless action and effects. But I still want something more that to be teased with what felt like a preface for The Avengers movie in 2012.
So, to get inspired and brainstorm, I started browsing some of my favorite review sites; Listening to the idiots on You Tube, reading real person reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and Flixster, and of course Roger Ebert. He hit it spot on and that’s when it all hit me. I found myself agreeing with everything and finally seeing why Thor wasn’t like the Iron Man, Spiderman, or Hulk (the Edward Norton version, obviously) movies.
So instead of our standard review, I invite you to see why Ebert is the top movie critic and read his review of Thor. It couldn’t be said any better.
Oh, and I give Thor a 5 of 10 stars mainly because the post production 3D was decent (I know I’m always ragging about it), Gina gives Thor a 6.5 of 10 stars, and Chad probably gives Thor a 4.5 of 5 beers. You probably need to drink that many to give it a review that high. Go ahead and disagree now Chad!
Thursday, March 31, 2011
First Twilight ruins vampires, then Red Riding Hood ruins a classic, and now Beastly tries to ruin another great aspect of American literature? What the hell is going on with movies these days? Can anyone come up with his or her own great story without remaking an old movie, book, or poem or dragging on a movie with multiple mediocre sequels? However, we will still give Beastly its fair shot.
Everyone knows this story. Not only was it a Disney movie, but there was a show in the 80’s starring Linda Hamilton (or Sarah Connor). Guy is an asshole, crazy woman turns him ugly, only true love will “cure” guy. It has probably inspired many more movies than you realize because of the basic human nature psychological study. The twist for this is Vanessa Hudgens, Mary-Kate Olsen, and the icing on the cake… NPH himself! (Neil Patrick Harris? Doogie Howser? In case you didn’t know.)
Kevin: NPH + Blind + Tudor = FUNNY
Gina: The banter with NPH was great. It really picked up the movie.
Kevin: It was too bad that everyone kept turning down the lead role. It would have been great to see the dialogue between NPH and Zac Efron, or NPH berating Rob Pattinson. Two hopefuls who said no… No idea why. ::sarcasm::
Gina: It wasn’t that bad.
There were a number of actors that denied the various roles in Beastly. So the lead went to Alex Pettyfer. “Who?” you ask. Oh sorry… I am Number Four. And boy did he branch out and show off his versatility for these roles! In one he was a High School kid who feels degraded because he is different, in the other, he is a High School kid who feels belittled because
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Paul had the best opportunity to be the most horrific comedy of the year. Come on, Seth Rogen as a rude and vulgar alien prankster on the run from the Feds? For sure you have to be thinking this was one for the trash pile. However, you also have the comedy genius of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. Is that enough to bring it above .500? Yes.
Pegg and Frost were cast and delivered their stellar performances but without their usual British humor (which is what makes them so funny) and somehow as the writers they worked it more towards the Seth Rogen style and came out as winners once again.
Kevin: This is the perfect role for Rogen because his voice doesn’t annoy you so much when it’s not coming from his face.
Chad: The Pegg and Frost comedy wasn’t really in the movie, but they were still funny.
Gina: I like when Paul was asking if the Pegg and Frost characters were gay, almost charades like.
There were also as many cameo’s in the movie as there were original jokes. All with just enough screen time to be funny with out wearing out their welcome. Bill Hader, Jane Lynch, David Koechner, Jeffery Tambor, Jason Bateman, Sigourney Weaver, Kristin Wiig… Just to name a few.
With what this could have been, we were pleasantly surprised with what we were given.
Chad: I got a Regal Rewards card…
Kevin: Way to jump into 2007.
Chad: It took forever, like five weeks to get to me. I ordered it online.
Gina: Why didn’t you just get it at the theatre?
Kevin: That’s what I did. You get it right then and there.
Chad: But is yours all professional looking like this?
Kevin: Like this?
Chad: Damn it!
Chad: 3 of 5 beers
Gina: 6.5 of 10 stars
Kevin: 6.3 of 10 stars
Combined Rating: 6.27 of 10 stars
Sunday, March 27, 2011
There was a lot of curiosity with this movie due to the District 9/Cloverfield-esqe trailers. However, they were showing quite a lot of the “enemy” so the question to ask was whether there was anything left as a surprise when you would go to see it.
Battle: Los Angeles is pretty straightforward; a cut and dry shoot them before they shoot you gunner flick. It is basically the opposite plot of District 9, instead of landing on earth as an accident they are coming to inhabit earth, minus the political subtleties. Throw in the gimmicky (now-a-days) shaky cam, and you have the makings of a potential blockbuster shoot-em-up.
The problem is that a lot of the movies front running highlights are not new, and have actually been seen in other movies fairly recently. A few years ago the look and style seen in Battle: LA would have been fresh and new, but now it came across fairly flat. The dialogue was non-existent, and the acting was pretty bad considering the most of the requirement involved screaming the lines.
There were some pros as well, though. If you like first person shooter games, then this movie will be like playing a video game the entire time. There was lots of action… lots of action! And a couple suspenseful “in the line of fire” battle scenes. Some people will really like it.
Chad: The only thing that could have made it better would have been Will Smith punching an alien in the face… oh, and a different leading woman. Anna Lucia shoulda never left the island.
Monday, January 31, 2011
Natalie Portman has been doing a lot of movies lately, and with quite a range in variety. The raw, dark indie comedy Hesher with Joe Gordon-Levitt (yeah, he likes to go by Joe), Black Swan where she imagines making out with Milla Kunis, and soon coming out in Thor and Your Highness. Even more unique from those is the romantic comedy No Strings Attached where she ACTUALLY makes out with Ashton Kutcher.
Ashton Kutcher has not been in much lately, and nothing very far out of his comfort zone. Valentines Day with so many big name actors that it ruined the whole thing, and Killers with movie killer Katherine Heigl, and in that same comfort zone, No Strings Attached. So why pair the award-winning actress with the goofball from Dude, Where’s My Car?
Chad: Who cares, Natalie Portman is hot! That’s the only reason I wanted to see it.
Gina: You got to see Ashton’s bare ass!
Kevin: OK… Looks like I’m taking this review solo!
This movie is make or break for Portman much more than Kutcher. If it fails, Kutcher could care less. He still gets paid and it can’t be any worse than any other roles he has done, however, it reflects badly on Portman who is coming off her ground breaking performance in Black Swan. If it does well, Kutcher could care less. He still gets paid and it can’t be worse than any other roles he has done, however, it is one more genre that Portman can notch in her belt.
Fortunately, it wasn’t bad. It was pretty funny for the most part and showed a lighter, humorous side for Natalie, kind of on the lines of her SNL Digital Short “Natalie Raps” (look it up if you haven’t seen it, very good). Obviously no one is winning any awards, not even Kevin Kline for playing Kutcher’s immoral dad, or Cary Elwes as the head doctor at Portman’s hospital. But it looked like everyone had fun, and that comes out in every ones performance.
Fun fact: The original casting for the poor mans Batman (that’s the Green Hornet by the way) was Nick Cage. Thank god that was changed! He has a large repertoire of fine films, but lately everything he has done, save Kick Ass, has been terrible. The problem was the cast change was to writer, producer, and almost director, Seth Rogen.
Chad: The problem with Seth Rogen is that he tries to bring the bromance shit to every movie!
Kevin: And his voice gets annoying. He did all right though, and I’m glad he got to play a superhero cause he has wanted to be one for a long time.
Chad: Too bad he had to write his own movie to do it.
The only thing you really need from a movie like this is entertainment. It’s not going to win any awards or even gain a record attendance or anything on those lines. If people aren’t bored throughout the entire thing, it’s a win.
Like so many films of this nature, however, it had its period of repetitive, boring content. About fifteen minutes could have been removed and it wouldn’t have bothered anyone. It wasn’t really the drab characters or the actors portrayals necessarily, just the content. The actors actually did a decent job; again, you don’t need too much. Though, Cameron Diaz did a fine job of making her part feel obsolete, a great James Franco cameo made up for it!
Chad: The guy from Inglourious Basterds (Christoph Waltz) was a good bad guy.
Gina: His accent was really bad, though.
Kevin: Uh… I think that is his real accent.
Gina: Are you sure?
Monday, January 24, 2011
It is always interesting how movie etiquette differs between people and how it is perceived though different generations. Our viewing of True Grit was a perfect experiment in movie viewing psychology… and the movie was pretty interesting too. Did the most recent western “masterpiece” live up to the surrounding hype?
First off, the average age in the theatre was 75, which isn’t a problem as much as it was interesting to see the difference between this afternoon show time and seeing something like Transformers at a midnight showing. Also, with the entire two rows behind us completely open, we still had one guy come in and sit one seat away from us in the same row! Really?!?
Chad: Yeah, I made sure to comment on it loud enough for him to hear it.
Kevin: Didn’t faze him though.
Anyway, True Grit was a good western film with real heart and soul put into its creation. Which is beneficial because a poorly made western really sucks. The dialogue alone carried you thoroughly through the entire run time without a real lull at all.
Kevin: The back and forth between Jeff Bridges and Matt Damon was great.
Chad: Yeah… Jeff Bridges will always be The Dude in anything he’s in, though. It always comes out.
Kevin: That’s a good thing.
Chad: And you can’t go wrong with a main character that has an eye patch!
Saturday, January 1, 2011
Everyone knows how classically terrible (in the best way possible) the original Tron movie was, so kudos to Tron: Legacy for not referencing its cult classic predecessor too much when promoting the release. It was ridiculously hard to find a copy of the original to re-watch; there was no Blu Ray or special edition DVD release even right before Christmas. Really though, how embarrassing is it that the movie’s video game has grossed more money since their release.
Anyway, 28 years of nerdly anticipation has finally come to realization and this time around in 3D and DBOX, the newest movie gimmick. This completing a trio of movies we’ve seen in DBOX, it is easily the best so far.
Chad: The light flyers, yes there are flying versions of the light bikes, is easily the best DBOX scene ever.
Kevin: The light bikes were great too. And thank you for filming in 3D, enough with the post-production crap!
Chad: You could tell it was really good 3D but it was so dark that it was lost most of the time.
Kevin: Yeah, you didn’t get a lot of the depth. But when it was bright it was great.
Now I know there will be a lot of people criticizing the plot line, but you really don’t need much to put together what is important to the movie as a whole. What everyone really wants from Legacy is crazy awesome effects, revamped game sequences, and a graphically updated computer world. Done. You get all of it. Do we really care why Kevin Flynn disappeared, or why Clu (his computer world created clone) wants to invade the real world? Yes, but we don’t need forty-five minutes of it…
Friday, November 26, 2010
Clint Eastwood’s latest was released with not much publicity and trailer’s that didn’t really give a lot away or do anything to suck you in. Think Unbreakable but more boring. However, if you did pay attention, the plot was quite intriguing, had much to work with, and with the style that Eastwood can put through in his cinematic vision, had potential to be pretty moving.
Hereafter was essentially a character film, revolving around the story of an ex-psychic troubled by his ability cursing him into a life with out emotion of the unknown. Matt Damon falls into his role nicely and solidly performs to the standards of what is expected from Eastwood.
Gina: You could really feel Matt Damon’s draw into his character, which is what made it such a character chronicle.
Kevin: Even with the plot following three major stories, the Damon story draws you in the most.
Gina: The French woman was intriguing.
Kevin: She did have a subtle but true charisma.
And this isn’t to take anything away from the other third of the storyline, which was interesting in it’s own. It’s just that you knew the psychic was who would connect everything in the end somehow.
Eastwood has a peculiar way of having everyone of his films having the same dramatic feeling while still being completely different; which is much more skillful than you might
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
We’re not going to spend too much time on this. The story was mediocre, especially since the material is already there. The acting was even worse, and that IS giving the benefit of the doubt to the fact that it was a cast of predominantly first timers. The effects were underwhelming, and the 3D (like we have said time and time again regarding post production 3D) was lack luster to non-existent. You’re not missing much with the subtraction of the 3D for the Blu-Ray release.
There was more than enough opportunity to make this an epic film. When watching the trailers, it was mind boggling how something that had what looked like such cool effects had been getting such bad reviews; right now I think it still is at 7% on Rotten Tomatoes. But it deserves it. It was that bad.
It is supposed to have four parts in the series. Right now, if it even gets the funding for a sequel, everyone is looking to strip M. Night Shyamalan of his directorial duties. NO! That’s like firing the coach of a 0-10 football team in the middle of the season. A change of management is not going to miraculously make you win out the season; it just creates a fail-fail opportunity for the next man in charge.
Let the captain go down with the ship! He has a vision, and supposedly two sequel screenplays written for what he says are much darker story lines. Let it play out with him at the helm. That is the only thing that can salvage what this first movie has created.