Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The King's Speech (5)




The story of King George VI of Britain and his surprising ascension to the throne and the speech therapist who helped him get there.

Watching movies like this makes me disappointed to see movies like Little Fockers and Yogi Bear(which mind you, I haven't seen yet, but really...come on) owning the box office while such a astounding and once in a life time film like this sort of hides under the lime light. So sad. This is a masterpiece. Every little bit of news you have heard about this film is true. It is such an amazing story with extremely impressive performances and perfect comedy to top it all off.

Colin Firth, I heart you so much. I respect your choice in keeping to where your audience likes to see you, in the romantic type films, while leaving yourself some room to grow in movies like A Single Man. Yet, seeing you play something so perfectly, so intensely beautiful as this makes me want to shake you and kiss you at the same time. You really are an amazing actor. I don't care what anyone says. I watched A Single Man and thought you were at your prime but no, you were just getting started. This is the best performance of yours to date. Hands down. Thank you very much.

Not only was Mr. Firth at his extreme, ultimate high but then here comes Geoffrey Rush. What an amazing supporting role. So well done. There were scenes with him and Colin that took my breath away. Seeing these two on their own is one thing but when they were in one shot together...it was so powerful. I can't even explain it. They made this film what it is. They really did. Without one or the other it wouldn't have been as fantastic. I hope they work together again soon...

It was good to see Helena Bonham Carter in a role like this as well but even with her good performance she just didn't shine as much as Rush and Firth.

The story is really good. I know you might tell yourself that you're tired of all the royalty stories and gossip but this movie isn't like what you think it is. No. Not at all. They humanize the family more than in any other film I have ever seen. They were just people with extra ordinary problems. I loved that. They don't actually spend that much time at all focusing on them in that way, which was a nice break from your everyday royal family tale.

Best scene: the swearing one. You'll know what I'm talking about. I haven't laughed like that for a long time. Actually, this film was full of moments like that which really surprised me. I never thought it would be as hilarious as it was. Moments filled with honest, every day, sarcastic humour. Fantastic. I was laughing my ass off.

I liked how they added in some personal stories about King George IV, ones that I had never heard of before. Some really sad true stories from his childhood that made me really latch on and connect to the character. I was teary eyed for a few parts. The speech at the end was all the more powerful because of it. Not only is it a King leading his people through hard times, but it was an everyday man over coming himself, his fears and humility. Strong stuff. Very moving.

I want to give this a 5/5...there was some slowness at the beginning that had me worried, but then it was necessary in order to set the characters and the reality of the whole thing before diving into the butter of the story. So. I guess...

5/5

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

127 Hours (4.5)



Based on the true story of Aron Ralston, the mountain climber who gets trapped under a boulder while canyoneering alone near Moab, Utah for 127 hours.

I had wanted to see this film since I first heard it was happening. I've been a fan of Danny Boyle (director) ever since Slumdog Millionaire. I've been a fan of James Franco ever since, well, ever. I tried to go see it at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) but it was sold out before I could blink. It was worth the wait though. Oh boy, was it ever.

I love any adventurer story. Into the Wild is another ultimate favourite of mine, if you end up liking this film (which you should) I highly suggest you check it out. The book is great as well. Anywho, I love all stories like this one. There is just something about raw survival that heightens the senses and inspires you; gets your blood flowing. This film did that and then some. Right from the very first shot I was in. I was in it. They had my full attention and they kept it right until the credits.

James Franco, you're amazing. I don't know how he did it, but he really really did it. I felt so connected and on the roller coaster with him. Any little change in expression I was there with him, mirroring his emotions from the audience. Fantastic.

I can definitely compare the suspense to Buried. It was such a ride. I think I started to get a cramp in my arm from being tense for so long. The close up shots and the very well done and synced music definitely helped with that. Sometimes the music effected me more than the visuals, which is always a treat.

The big scene which I'm sure you have all heard of by now was super gruesome. Not for the light of heart, yet I have seen worse. That shouldn't calm you down that much though seeing as I've seen some really horrific horror/slasher/rater super R films that make you lose sleep. Still, it could've been worse but I'm glad they had it the exact way they did. Any less or any worse would've ruined the whole thing I think because the rest of the story would have paled in comparison to this one "big" scene. Still crazy though. Gives me the shivers.

Best scene was when he starts talking about how his whole life and the rocks entire life was set up for this to happen. That it was fate or destiny or whatever you want to call it. That was amazing. I got pretty emotional, well, more than I already was at that moment. They way the set that whole part up was really well done. It gave me chills. There were a few others scenes like that too that had me thinking harder than was required about my own life.

Great story. The fact that it really happened makes it even more intense. Amazing performance by James Franco with great directing by Danny Boyle. Good music and all the rest. Yup, easy to say that this is a film that you don't want to let slip by you. Go out and watch it. The horrific scene shouldn't keep you away, it's worth the grimaces and tears.

4.5/5

Inkheart (3.5)



A man discovers that he can bring characters from the books he reads to life. As his daughter gets older she finds out who her father really is when a mysterious man, a character from a book called Inkheart that he has been looking for for 9 years, finds them and threatens her dad. Suddenly they all find themselves kidnapped by the villain from this same book and all must fight to get back to the families they have lost.

I have no idea why I decided to watch this movie. It looked so cheesy and so lame anytime I saw the cover and a trailer. I was tired but wanted something fun and simple to watch before bed but I had already seen all the family-esque films that we offered to me, all but this one. I took a chance, and it was way better than I ever could've thought. This movie is surprisingly decent.

Brendan Fraser. I forgive you. You got older and had a family and still wanted to act but didn't want anything too crazy or serious. You had some bad films buddy. Some really bad choices that have coined you as, well, a wash up. I liked you in this role though. I really did. You have some action and some family stuff but you also had some good scenes that had me raising my eyebrows in remembrance of how amazing you used to be. You still got it, it's in there. I felt it while watching this film. Now bring it on back!

Paul Bettany is easily one of my natural favourites these days. I am always so drawn to him. I have no idea why, but he is just amazing. Even in this silly little roles, he is always 100% the character he is portraying and you can't ever blame him for a movie being bad. He is always the best part of any film he is in. Yet, he is just slightly out of the lime light, which makes it even better. Even after films like The Young Victoria and Legion you can't help but feel connected to him no matter the character or film.

This is a family movie though so you can't blame them for the action and the cheese. All things considered though this movie could have been awful but instead it was a fun flick with some good acting and not so awful ending. Huzzah!

3.5/5

Me and Orson Welles (3.5)



A teenager is cast in the Mercury Theatre production of "Julius Caesar" directed by the up and coming Orson Welles in 1937. Here he finds out the hard way how life in theatre can be and who this Orson Welles guy really is. There's not room for love or kindness in show biz.

I'm a pretty big supported of Zac Efron. He especially had me convinced after I watched Charlie St. Cloud. I know that he got a bad rap and was type casted after his days of High School Music 1 through 78, but he really is talented. If you step back and allow yourself to look at him as an actor now you would (hopefully) see that too. Come on, he's a pure bred triple threat. That is more rare than you'd think. He can actually act and sing and dance without any voice overs or fill ins and what have you. That's awesome. And he's a looker...which always helps. heh. Really though, he was great in this role. It was nice to see him 'on stage' even if that stage was being filmed.

I have found myself liking Claire Danes these days as well, especially after seeing her as Temple Grandin. She was good as the love interest, the selfish love interest.

One big question I had while watching this film was where the hell did this Christian McKay fella come from and why isn't he in every single movie I watch?! He plays Orson Welles and was fantastic. I was shocked to look him up and find that I had never even heard of him before. Hopefully he starts getting more attention because if Zac was so hot I would've been completely glued to him for the whole film.

The story is basic. It was nice to see some theatre on film action going on. It is weird though, as someone who works in theatre, to see it on the big screen. Yet, it's still good to see it. They did a good job of making the theatre seem theatre. All the little stage tricks are real life theatre tricks. That was great to see.

I don't know that much about Orson Welles to be honest, at least not his early years, so it was nice to see this film for that yet it's not a biography. Not at all. It follows the teenager more than Orson so don't bother renting this film and expecting to get an inside look at Welles. The whole movie had a bit of a family feel to it but that didn't make it bad, it just stopped them from digging too far into the real going-ons throughout the film.

Still, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed watching this movie. It's different from watch I usually watch which is always nice. Acting was great. Story is entertaining and there are some really funny moments and a few inspiration lines that had me "hmmm" with my chin in my hand. Literally.

Worth a gander for sure.

3.5/5

Friday, December 24, 2010

Hamlet (4.5)



A BBC film of The Royal Shakespeare Company's 2009 adaptation of the classic play starring David Tennant, Patrick Stewart and Penny Downie.

I am a pretty big David Tennant fan at the moment. I have been watching the new Doctor Who series almost religiously and I love, love, love watching him play the doctor. I also remember him as Barty Crouch Jr. from the fourth Harry Potter film. There is something about how David acts what as soon as he enters the shot you cannot take your eyes off of him. It's almost like he is electric. I thought that was caused only by my love of Doctor Who so I was rather looking forward to watching him in another role. Not just any role, but in my favourite play and my favourite theatrical character of all time: Hamlet.

He did no disappoint. He did the complete opposite of that and completely blew me away. I have seen numerous live productions of this play and have watched almost every film version I could find and he might just be my favourite. That's right, he is right next to if not surpassing Lawrence Olivier's portrayal of Hamlet. That is huge. That is hard for me to say. Yet, it's true.

It's something about his little facial reactions. His tiny snaps in dialect and use of words that had me grinning like an idiot or stunned into silence. It was amazing to see. His physicality was astounding. I have never seen a more physical portrayal of Hamlet in my entire life. It almost shocked me really because it was so new. Every other Hamlet is still unless he is 'acting' crazy...but no. David was in this character body and mind. Fantastic to see.

If you can't tell already I am going to go out and buy this movie on Boxing Day. That's right, it is so good I will face the crowds to get my hands on my own copy.

Even if David Tennant isn't enough then, oh, who's this? Patrick Stewart! I mean, come on! How amazing is that?! He did an amazing job as Claudius. Fantastic.

Okay. So. Even if you think you hate Shakespeare I say give this version a chance. It is never dull. You would never know it was a 3 hour long film. The set is stunning, I really loved the use of reflective surfaces and playing with the "play within a play" scenario with the cameras. David does one of the best if not the best portrayals of Hamlet I have ever seen. The everything is amazing...

Ya. Okay. I'll stop now.

4.5/5

The Ghost Writer (2)



A ghostwriter is hired to complete the memoirs of the former British prime minister after the previous writer's body washes up on shore. With no experience in politics, the new writer begins the work on this long awaited book but the deeper his research goes the more his life is in danger.

I'm generally a sucker for the corrupt political films. I am slowly getting tired of them as the most recent ones tend to be pretty dry and, in my opinion, exaggerate a little too much. I was hoping this movie would be different but alas it was worse than I could've guessed.

Boring.

So boring. I started fast forwarding during the last 30 minutes of the movie. It was that bad. And even after all that I didn't miss anything. Some of the 'ground breaking' events in this movie were less than a surprise. In fact, the whole movie moves at a slow pace so you think it's because something big is building but when that 'big' thing comes it's almost as exciting as a firework that never goes off.

I was pretty disappointed. The beginning of this movie takes far too long to start up. It starts up and every character is dull and adds almost nothing to the story. Then some other events take place that don't seem to matter all that much. Suddenly the writer is running away on less than exciting get away attempts then...what you thought was true is true.

End.

Lame. I really didn't like it. The only reason why I am giving it a 2 is because I'm a huge Ewan McGregor fan and he can never do wrong (this movie was not his fault). Also, you get to see his bum. That was exciting.

The very, very ending was cool. I love that shot. That was the only time in that 2 hour chunk of my life that I was remotely interested and then 5 seconds later the credits rolled.

*sigh*

2/5

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past (2)




A life time bachelor and sleaze finds himself haunted by the 'ghosts' of his ex girlfriends during the weekend of his brothers wedding.

Oh boy. How to start this review...

I sort of wish I hadn't wasted my time on this movie. To be honest, I was playing games on my phone and nothing else was on that I hadn't seen before so I just started to watch this and suddenly I had watched the whole thing and I had no idea why.

I don't find Matthew McConaughey extremely sexy but there is something there so maybe that was the reason. His role wasn't anything wondrous, you are meant to dislike him anyways, but the writing was not so great. Well, by that I mean that it is the most basic and classic case of romcom I have ever viewed. Almost as amazing (sarcasm) as The Back-up Plan. *shiver*

I also could care less about Jennifer Garner and haven't really enjoyed her in any of her films I have seen yet (there is still hope). I can never seem to care anything about her characters. She is just...dry, to me. I guess that's an appropriate word, there is no juice to her characters. What you see is what you get. I guess that works for this simple romcom.

Story is nothing amazing. It's an eye rolling spin off of one of the best stories ever created: A Christmas Carol.

If you want a brainless, not so funny or even so sexy, semi-entertaining and simple movie you should watch this. You don't even really have to pay attention in order to watch it. It sucks because I've liked Matthew in romcoms before this movie and now I'm back to thinking I don't like him...

It's a romcom. It's corny. It's not humourous. It's meh.

2/5

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Waterworld (3.5)


1995 action/sci-fi starring Kevin Costner.

Okay, stop rolling your eyes! I feel like most people, even those who have never even seen this movie, they just assume that it's bad or remember it being bad. I am one of those people who quite enjoys this movie. I am going to tell you why! And, no, Kevin Costner is not hot so that is not the reason.

Set in the future when the entire planet is consumed by water, we follow the story of one drifter who gets stuck trying to help a woman and a young girl to find dry land. There is something special about the girl that this drifter didn't know about until the outlaws begin to track and hunt them down. Now they are not only looking for land but for a way to save their own lives.

I will admit that there are gaping holes in this story so don't bother trying to look at it in any sort of realistic way; it wont work and you will hate it. Also, yes, the acting is nothing short of awful (for the most part), but even if the acting was a little better, what makes this movie good has nothing to do with the acting.

Maybe it's because I grew up with this film so I've always liked it but I really like the over all idea. I liked how they tried to look at the "end of the world" scenario in a new way. I mean, I think this was one of the first movies that made people stop and think about the ice caps and the environment in a whole new way. This was a decade before movies like Day After Tomorrow and 2012 and what not. Those aren't very good either but they force you to think about how bad stuff could really be. The only thing is that Waterworld didn't have the CG or the effects that the end of days movies do now which to me adds to it's awesomeness.

I liked the cheese. I enjoy that every thing, though bogus, was real...it's basically Mad Max on water and Kevin Costner is Mel Gibson. That's basically what it is. It also said screw you to the 90's movie go-er crowd and just threw this story in their face which ultimately back fired but I still think they need some credit for doing that. It really is a cool idea.

Granted, if you don't like action movies, Kevin Costner, or sci-fi type films you will probably want to stab your eyes out but if you do give it a chance. It's not so bad. IF anything it's entertaining and some of the seriousness will make you laugh pretty damn hard.

...it could be worse. Trust me. It really could.

3.5/5

Casablanca (4)


The 1942 romantic/war time classic that still wins hearts.

Starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, a American owns his own salon in Casablanca, Morroco during the second world war. This man seems cold and/or neutral to everyone he meets until the most beautiful girl anyone has ever seen walks into his salon with a man every Nazi wishes he could arrest. Soon everyone finds out how fate wasn't ready to let these two people forget one another and how far it will go to make them be together again.

Ever wonder where some of the most quoted romantic movie lines come from? They are probably from this film.

This is one of the most classic films of all time. I had seen it years ago during a random black&white film kick but then I put it behind me and moved on. Since then I've come across a ton of people who had never seen it so I felt the need to go back and watch it again. It was just as good the second time around.

Keep in mind that this is a movie from the 40's so the action isn't what we're use to. The romance isn't what we would really call romantic. The dialect and difficulties are not as intense as they normally are, but it's so fantastic. This is an incredible movie and a must see for all movie watchers. Even for those not-so-avid movie go-ers, you should really consider seeing this movie.

The story is amazing. The characters are fantastic. This movie is all about its characters and that's what makes it so amazing. The majority of movies I watch now don't spend enough time on the people but rather look at the scenery and the special effects. There is very little of that in Casablanca. That's what makes it so raw and so powerful. Simple sets. Straight forward characters and a solid, believable story.

See some good old style acting with Bogart and Bergman and enjoy the simple yet complicated story. Just sit back and enjoy this one, it's a part of history.

4/5

The Proposal (4)




The leading editor of a big publisher in New York City is about to be deported back to Canada when she announces that she is in fact getting married to her over-worked assistant Andrew. In truth, she is blackmailing him into the whole ordeal in order to get a visa so she can continue working for the company. What she doesn't know is who Andrew is, or more importantly, how amazing he could be.

I've always liked Sandra Bullock so I tend to attempt to watch all her new releases. This one slipped past me last year though and I only came upon when web-stalking, I mean, researching Ryan Reynolds online. Then a friend told me about it and another and another so I had to see it. Even after watching it about 5 times I still love it. It's far more hilarious than I thought it could be.

Sandra is amazing. She nails the role. I always find her funny though, not sure why. Ryan Reynolds is amazing and super as always hot in this film. I like them together in this movie because just like their characters you would think they would be good together...but they are. Really liked watching them work together.

I'm not sure if I 100% believed them being in love by the end though. Not sure why, I just didn't believe it.

Bonus: Betty White is Andrew's Grammy. Fantastic. She is part of the most hilarious scenes in this film. That whole "give thanks to the universe" chant thing kills me every time. So good. So glad to see her as this character. You rock Betty! ...and the puppy. I love that little fur ball.

When it comes down to it though, and you get past the hilarity of at least half of this movie, it is a romcom. With that comes an obligation to not question every thing and allow yourself to be entertained. If you can do that this movie will surprise you just as much as it did me. I really like this movie.

Funny. Cute. Some magically hilarious scenes and Ryan with his shirt off. Yum.

4/5

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Temple Grandin (4)




Based on the true story of Temple Grandin, an autistic woman who becomes one of the top scientists in the humane livestock handling industry.

I had never heard of Temple Grandin before, or maybe I had but then forgot about her so this movie was a very random find. At first I turned it on because it sounded lame and because I had no idea what the hell it was about. I am so glad I did, this was a delightful surprise!

The story of this women is enough of a reason to watch this film. Spectacular. Really amazing. From where she started to where she ended up, it's so inspirational. Temple herself seems like an amazing person, Claire Danes did a fantastic job portraying her. Such a great character.

There really wasn't a dull moment at all in this film. Not sure if I really liked the ending or not but there was really no good way to end this movie so I'll have to let that one go. All the characters were interesting and the writing was great.

The best moments were when they gave you a glimpse into how Temple sees things. For example, one character uses the term "husbandry" but Temple pictures it as marriage and they cut quickly to a cow with a wig standing beside 'her' husband on their 'wedding' day. Hilarious. The little things like that made this movie.

Like I said, Claire Danes was fantastic. Really amazing performance. I felt so connected to her the entire time. It was nice to see David Strathairn too, even though it was only for a brief time. I've always liked him.

Fantastic true story that I feel is a must see. Very well done with an amazing portrayal of this magnificent woman. I'm really glad that I stumbled upon it!

4/5

The Bounty Hunter (3)




A bounty hunter gets the assignment of his dreams: to find his ex-wife and bring her to jail. The only problem is he is wanted for gambling money and she is wanted for sticking her reported nose into a corrupt suicide case and they both need to make it to the courthouse on time. There's nothing wrong with one last adventure together, until you're fighting for your lives instead of fighting over who is to blame for ruining the relationship.

I'm not sure what it is but no matter how bad, I cannot help but like every single Gerard Butler film. I mean, I have never liked Jennifer Aniston (settle down Friends fans) but it didn't seem to matter because Butler was there. I mean, he isn't even all that attractive so it must be something about his personality that draws me in. Who knows, it's a mystery, but I enjoyed this film.

When you put aside the hilarious obviousness that is the plot you can really sit back and enjoy the ride. This movie was fun and should not be taken seriously. Mind you, I didn't laugh as much as I wanted to or could have but it was still enjoyable.

The action is shrug worthy for the most part but for some reason once I started watching I couldn't turn it off. I was looking for a simple before bedtime film that I could turn off half way through but then I had to watch it all. I guess there is something to be said for that...

This is your average rom-com meets action flick. Same-ish style characters with all the obvious plot twists and turns. So, if you dig those types of films you will most likely love this one.

Also, Gerard Butler....

3/5

Red Cliff (4)




A 2008 John Woo film about a story centered on a battle fought in China's Three Kingdoms period (220-280 A.D.).

This may be my new favourite of this genre. Usually these types of films have a certain percent of unrealistic scenes and fighting styles (ex. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon). I personally enjoy that style but I know it stops the majority of people from being able to take the genre seriously. Whether you're in the first category or the second I think you will like this movie.

Any exaggeration is minimal and almost non-existent. The fight scenes were magnificent. They were so beautiful. Some of them I literally gasped out loud they were so stunning. The action was pure and the way it was laid out and executed was perfection. IF anything watch this movie for that; for the fight scenes.

Acting was generally amazing as well which also isn't always the case when discussing this style. Some of the performances were very memorable and the characters thoroughly thought out and portrayed. Mind you, this is based on a true story, so that adds another layer to the film that I always enjoy. These people existed and did these amazing things and that is fascinating.

I really liked how John Woo structured this film. All the strategic meetings/plannings were split screened with images of the tactics in action. I love when movies do that; you really have no choice but to get sucked in. It's like they're letting you in on the plans, that you can see into the minds of those speaking. Fantastic.

Like I said, stunning film. Good acting. Amazing everything else. Also, they throw a little character strife, slight romance and personal struggles that makes it all the more real. Some parts dragged a little too long but nothing overly annoying or distracting.

Unless you hate all things action I promise you will get something out of this film. I really liked it.

4/5

Monday, December 13, 2010

TRON: Legacy (4.5)




One day Sam's father, Kevin Flynn, disappears. The famous computer game creator and programmer drops off the face of the planet and no one, not even Sam, knows what happened to him. When Sam grows older he gets a tip to check out his fathers deserted arcade. He finds a secret door behind the Tron game. This door finally reveals to Sam a new side to his father, the side that took him away from him all those years before. His greatest creation...

I was really, really, really looking forward to this movie. For a long time now. I held back a bit though because I felt for sure that they weren't going to do it right. I mean, Disney is great, but generally when they try to do these types of films it's always lacking something. Missing a key part that would make it fantastic.

They found that part for Tron. This movie was way better than I ever thought it could be. Maybe it was because I didn't get my hopes up or maybe it's because I don't know as much about Tron as I should...regardless. This movie is one of my new favs. Hands down. I wish I could watch it again right NOW...

Jeff Bridges. Just...amazing. I loved him. He was perfect for Kevin Flynn. I don't think anyone else could have played it just right, just the way he did. Double high fives.

I was a little worried about Garrett Hedlund as Sam Flynn but he was actually pretty good. I liked him. He handled all the action and what not really well. Nothing ground breaking but he wasn't annoying and for that I tip my hat. He could've played it all wrong but no, he did me proud.

Okay. Now for the good stuff: the visuals. Only exclamations and swear words come to mind here. It was beyond imagination. I was breathless for some of the shots. I mean, whoa. Really amazing. All the game stuff, the lights and even the 3D was spectacular. It was a nerd dream come true. Amazing action. So good. Well paced, well edited and didn't need to be used to cover any flaws in the story (at least I didn't think so) so it made it all the more raw. And fun. Amazing.

I am not generally a 3D supporter but this movie finally showed me what potential lies in that technology. It was a wild ride, very well done.

Only one thing that bothered me and it was only in the slightest: the young Flynn CGI. I mean, it was only so obvious because the rest of the movie was so perfect, but still. It bugged me a little. You can't blame them though really, it looked amazing but it just wasn't real.

Word of advice: don't treat the plot like a puzzle, even if you don't know anything about Tron before now you will be fine. There are no secrets hidden or anything (well, there are little nerd things but if you don't get them it doesn't ruin anything). Basically what I'm saying is if you get too caught up in the story and put all your focus on the plot than the whole movie will flash by you. Just listen and take everything at face value and go along for the ride. If you have questions after do what I'm about to do and go back and re-watch and re-read what came before. Honestly though, not knowing any Tron history does not matter at all.

Daft Punk. You're Gods. Really and truly. The soundtrack is 50% of what makes this film so perfect.

As the credits rolled my mind was on fire. My imagination was at it's peak. I love when a movie can do that. I saw things just a little bit differently than I normally do.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.
See it!

4.5/5

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Paper Heart (4.5)



Charlyne Yi goes on a hunt across America to try and grasp a better understanding of something she's never felt and doesn't belive in: love. Sometimes when you look for something hard enough it finds you, but will she be able to feel it when it happens?

I was interested in this movie when I first saw trailers for it last year but then it slipped under the radar and I hadn't thought about it until a friend told me I had to watch it.

So glad that I did.

Yet another, thank ye lords, Michael Cera film that I love! Woohoo. I'm so glad that I'm a fan again (sorry Michael, you had some awful, awful movies and I lost faith). He was super amazing in this movie. I was grinning and giggling because of him the whole time. Also, strangely the cutest thing ever. High five.

Charlyne Yi was someone I had never heard of before and at first I wasn't feeling her. Then I really got to love her. I don't know, there is something about her that is very interesting and by the end of the movie I was sucked in.

Best parts of the movie were the little puppet things that Charlyne did/does. I can't tell if she did that just for this movie or if that is one of her things she does. No idea, but I LOVED them.

This movie definitely warmed my heart and a little bit of my soul. Listening to all of the stories and seeing all these people was amazing. I really liked the way this film was set up and how it all came together. Well done. It honeslty made me feel less awful about being single than most rom coms do. I didn't feel bad and lonely, I felt refreshed and excited about this whole "love" thing. It's not as easy as it sounds to talk about love without making those without feel like garbage. Hat tip for that.

I really want to know if this was fictional or not. I want to know if they actually met like that. I feel like not, but at the same time I feel like it's part truths. Charlyne Yi and Michael Cera are dating in real life...that makes it all the more cute.

I dig it. I thought it was different and super amazing. Definitely will be watching it again soon. Maybe even tonight.

4.5/5

Thursday, December 9, 2010

My Top 15 "Not So Christmas" Christmas Movies

Hello to all. Sorry I have been away and completely neglecting my blog but life is at an all time crazy high right now. That being said I took some time to make up a list of my favourite holiday themed films! Sometimes I get tired of the same old, same old that is on the television and I usually resort to these fantastic films (in no particular order):

1. Love Actually (2003, Romantic Comedy)

This isn’t only one of my favourite of favourites Christmas themed films; it’s also one of my favourite all around movies of all time. With a stellar cast and brilliant characters left, right and maybe all too close and centre, you really can’t let this movie slip by you. The writing is fantastic and everyone can relate to at least one story or one character in this movie, even the kids and even the man folk. I don’t really suggest this as a family film though as there is some slight nakedness and a few sexual slams (aka jokes) but I think it’s very PG-13 worthy. A great laugh and a great heart warmer for all!

2.The Holiday (2006, Romantic Comedy)

That’s right, another romantic comedy! Who doesn’t feel a little more succumbed to rom coms this time of year? For me nothing makes me want to cuddle on the couch with a cup of tea more than 30 below freezing. Even if you are spared the harshness of winter, there is something about the holidays that makes your heart warm. One of those things may be this movie, The Holiday. If Kate Winslet and Jack Black don’t make you want to watch this already, how about being shocked by how much you will like Judd Law and Cameron Diaz. I’m not usually a Judd fan but I love him in this role. He makes me grin like an idiot. A big, girly idiot. Jack is fantastic in this movie and really shows you a side of him that I am still stunned by every time I watch this movie. A little more couple-ie than Love Actually but I think the man will be pleased with Jack Black being involved. Once again, not so family friendly but I’ll leave that to you.

3. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (2005, Family/Fantasy)

Such an amazing story with generally good acting and the animals that steal the show (I love when they do that). Narnia is such an amazing family movie. Everyone loves something about these stories. There’s snow, there’s polar bears, there’s good and evil and what not, but there’s also something very Christmas like about it all. Plus, Mr. Tumnus. Come on. That’s worth it right there. And there’s a lion. Brilliant. Not super scary but I’m not sure how younger kids would handle this movie. There are quite a bit of tears, some blood and fighting. Once again, I leave that to you.

4.Babes in Toyland (1986, Family/Musical)

This movie is hilarious! It’s one of my all time favourites. Keanu Reeves and Drew Barrymore when they were really young is amazing enough but over all it’s just a very entertaining movie. It’s got “written for television” all over it. Yet, it’s a quirky adventure flick and a good one to put on while decorating or baking. If all else fails at least it will take you back to those crazy 80’s. Family friendly for sure!

5.Planes Trains and Automobiles (1987, Comedy)

A man is trying to get home for Thanksgiving and ends up with the worst travel partner ever. Nothing says the holidays or comedy quite like John Candy. Already you know it’s good. This is another classic John Candy film. So if that isn’t enough incentive: Steve Martin. End. It’s great! Not so family friendly but it will guarantee to make you giggle.

6.National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (1989, Family/Comedy)

I wasn’t sure if this fell along the same classic lines as The Grinch for anyone else so I thought I would put it in here. I love this movie. To me and many others it is as classic to the holidays as any other Christmas flick but I know it’s sometimes forgotten. Don’t forget. It’s hilarious. It’s entertaining. It’s pretty family friendly too in my books.

7.Die Hard (1988, Action)

How could I not put this one in here? Not only is it one of the best action movies of all time but it’s Christmas themed! Win for everyone! I don’t have much else to say about it as I’m sure you’ve all seen it before but you can have some gun fights while still keeping the Christmas spirit alive and warm. Yippee-Ki-yay! I watched this when I was really young but there is some swearing here and there, nothing crazy though.

8.Lethal Weapon (1987, Action)

If Die Hard wasn’t enough action for you and you’re feeling traditional still why not continue your festivities towards this classic flick. Such a great movie. Not as good as Die Hard (in my books) but it will do. Oh yes, put this movie on and you will remember the good old days…when Mel wasn’t crazy yet. I mean, when you would sit on the couch Christmas Eve with the family and feel the holiday joy. I also watched this when I was young but once again, caution.

9.Edward Scissorhands (1990, Drama/Fantasy)

Such an amazing film and perfect for the holidays. It’s all about family, love, cheerfulness and Johnny Depp. What more is there to life really? I’m sure you’ve seen this but, once again, it is a nice break from the normal Christmas flicks but doesn’t stray too far away to make you feel like you’re skipping the classics on purpose. I think it’s family friendly but Edward is pretty darn scary as it is so best judge that for yourself.

10.The Shinning (1990, Horror)

A little Jack Nicholson for the holidays is just what the doctor ordered. Plus, nothing says Christmas like hiding in the arms of someone you love, or maybe just that favourite pillow/blanket on the couch. It’s family friendly…for a bit. Really though, not a family flick. Something good when you’re enjoying a night cap though! Baileys anyone?

11.Kiss Kiss, Bang, Bang (2005, Action/Comedy)

If Jack and John aren’t enough to bring the holiday cheer why not add a little Robert to the mix? One of my new favourites and with just enough Christmas in it to make it to my list, the whole thing is hilarious and amazing. Val Kilmer is fantastic in this role and with Robert Downey Jr. added in this movie is a must see during the holidays. The action is amazing and the comedy is pure. Hear those sleigh bells ringing…

12.Ghostbusters II (1989, Action/Comedy)

Another classic. Man I love these movies! Plus I think this is my favourite of Ghostbuster series, mainly because it has Sigourney Weaver in it. Win. This movie was definitely part of my traditional Christmas programs while growing up. Pretty hilarious and with some ghost. Think of it as A Christmas Carol but with Bill Murray and a lot more jokes. You just can’t go wrong.

13.Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004, Drama/Romance)

This is one of my all time favourite movies. The fact that it has some snow and maybe mentions the holidays and/or Christmas at some point (at least I think it does) was enough to make me put it on this list. It’s wintery for most of it so it counts. Kate Winslet and Jim Carey are fantastically amazing in this movie. It’s a little heavy and will probably be boring for kids but there isn’t anything too awful in it. It’s not entirely a feel good movie but it is when you take the time to think about it. It’s a thinking movie, I mean it’s entertaining but it’s more intense than any of the other films on this list. It’s still amazing. A nice change from the other holiday flicks.

14.Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001, Romantic Comedy)

Another of my all time favourites, these movies make me laugh and laugh and laugh some more. I love Renee Zellweger as Bridget; it’s my favourite role for her. Colin Firth is a deliciously handsome touch and Hugh Grant is tolerable in this role. It suits him, I’ll say that (sorry Hugh fans). It’s got some Christmas stuff here and there and is all about love and family and isn’t that just what the holidays are all about! Definitely a feel good flick. Not so much for the whole family but I didn’t think it was that bad. I suppose it has a lot of swearing though. Best to take caution, it’s a good afternoon-while-wrapping-presents kind of film.

15.Happy Feet (2006, Family/Comedy)

You know what they say, save the best for last! I love heart love this movie. I always have. Penguins and dancing and singing. It’s so amazing! A well done film with such a great story. Robin Williams is hilarious. The cast for this is actually really intense: Elijah Wood, Hugh Jackman, Nicole Kidman, Hugo Weaving….The list goes on and on. Happy Feet is super awesome for the family. The whole family will love this movie. It will easily be a new holiday favourite if it isn’t already.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

TiMER (3.5)




What if there was an invention that could tell you when you will meet your soul mate, would you want it? Would you get a timer? Why leave love to fate when it hurts so much and seems so hard to find the one you're suppose to be with? Is it wrong to want to know? Oona doesn't think so, until her life gets turned upside down all because of the timer.

I didn't know how to feel about the story at first but as my friends and I watched it the more questions I noticed we were asking. Some out loud and some we discussed after the credits rolled. I liked that about this movie, more than anything else, I loved that it caused me and others to question what they think is right when it comes to love. When it comes to soul mates. When it comes to planning fate...

The writing wasn't amazing but at least the story leaves you questioning. Obviously there were flaws in the story but it did the best it could with the allotted 2 hours.

Emma Caulfield (Oona) was decent in this movie. Having watched her in Buffy I couldn't help but notice how similar both the characters were. Not sure if that just happened or if it was bad acting, but she did a good enough job. Nothing life changing or brag worthy, but she wasn't annoying or make me roll my eyes.

I now have a huge school girl crush on John Patrick Amedori though. He plays Mikey, the younger and slightly greasy lover of Oona. I liked his character. Once again, nothing amazing but he had me giggling and sighing at the proper parts. His good looking face helped him out there though, what can I say...

No one acting wise was impressive, but once again I liked the story. Some parts didn't match up and caused some eye brow action but it still left me thinking about "the one". That whole obsession with that. They didn't try to candy coat anything, all the relationships were pretty raw.

The ending wasn't the greatest but I know I wouldn't have liked it no matter how they decided to end it. There really was no good way to finish this movie so I can't really complain about the end.

If you want a different take on the whole romcom bit than check this movie out. It wont amaze you but it should leave you questioning one or two things by the time the credits roll.

3.5/5

Monday, November 29, 2010

Miss Potter (4)




"The story of Beatrix Potter, the author of the beloved and best-selling children's book, "The Tale of Peter Rabbit", and her struggle for love, happiness and success."

How magical is this?! Two of my all time favourite actors, Renée Zellweger and Ewan McGregor, together. Fantastic. And if that isn't reason enough to watch this film than the story of one of the most cherished children's authors should convince you.

I, and I'm sure almost everyone, grew up with Miss Potter's books. They were my favourite when I was growing up. The whole time I was watching this movie I felt a strange connection to Beatrix. There were some similarities between her and I, or at least the ones Renée portrayed, and that brought me extremely close to the whole story. I love this character. I love Renée Zellweger. Perfection.

Ewan as always was amazing. That man...I swear he can do no wrong. Even if the movie he is in are less than impressive, he is always the best part and ultimately makes his characters and the movies whole. This was no exception. Loved him as Norman. So cute...

Story is brilliant and written so well. I was surprised by the end of it how smooth the whole movie was. Each scene seemed natural and each jump in the story was bang on. Really no complaints there at all. I liked how it's sort of a romantic movie but not really. It never dives into the gushy stuff or embellish on any of the relationships. I guess what I'm trying to say is that it felt very natural.

Some slower parts but nothing really noticeable. Also, it's basically a biography, and like in real life things go up and down. Not sure if I like the ending or not but it wasn't crucial to the film. They did get tears though, which is rare for me when watching movies. High five to that.

Great acting. Beautiful and emotional story. Really great film all around. I will definitely be watching this again soon.

4/5

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Tangled (4)




Revisiting the classic Rapunzel tale but with a new twist. A bandit steals a crown and while running away from the guards stumbles upon a mysterious tower. He climbs up and goes inside to hide from the guards only to be greeted by Rapunzel. Through a serious of events Flynn, the bandit, comes Rapunzel's guide as they work towards the city for the lantern festival. It turns out that everything is more complicated and more deceiving than anyone ever guessed.

I rolled my eyes when I say the first trailers for this movie awhile back. I'm not sure why, I've always been a fan of Disney, but this story was never one that did anything for me. So I sighed and mumbled about it but I was in the mood for a Disney flick tonight and this one was rumoured to be good. It was, it was a classic Disney movie.

I loved the story. I loved all the characters and even some of the lesser seen ones. Some of the side characters that were thrown in were my favourite, so random and so weird. I really liked this movie for that, so many great characters. Can I say characters again...

Mandy Moore as Rapunzel was actually amazing. I don't know why she disappeared but I'm glad she's back. Good songs, good job. Her with Zachary Levi (never heard of him before but he's dreamy) was awesome. It seemed that they fit together well.

Rapunzel's little cameleon guy was awesome. The horse was amazing! So hilarious.

Surprisingly enough there was a lack of face palm/sigh-cause-that-was-awful moments for me. I usually suffer a lot more of those when watching the new Disney. Not so much this time. Awesome.

Liked this way more than I ever thought I could. Super fun. Great story and characters. Hilariousness but by the end I had tears in my eyes. Classic, golden Disney movie. See it.

4/5

Due Date (3.5)




A soon to be father is trying to make his way home on time for the birth of his child when he runs into an aspiring actor and walking disaster by the name of Ethan Tremblay. Peter gets swept up into the chaos that is Ethan but through a serious of mishaps at the airport Ethan ends up being Peter's only way home. Enter the worst and most hilarious road trip of life.

I'm a big fan of both Robert Downey Jr and Zach Galifianakis and I was really excited to see these two together. I had a feeling that it would be something magical and it turns out I was right. They were perfectly matched in this film. So great to see them work together, I bet it was even more fun for them while filming.

The story is okay, it wasn't anything mind blowing. I also wasn't completely sold on the characters but it was a comedy so I didn't get caught up in it. Some of the scenes were ridiculously amazing and hilarious. There were times I was saying "Oh my God!" in response to the craziness that was happening. So good.

It felt like the movie took awhile to really get rolling. I was rusty at first. The best moments all happen within a 45 minute period, right at the middle of the movie. The beginning and end were meh. The middle was delicious.

I just felt like some things didn't connect and/or were just randomly thrown into the mix to move the story forward but then passed by and forgotten. Like the random best friend (aka Jamie Foxx). Weird.

Loved the pairing of Robert and Zach. I cannot look at Zach without laughing and Robert is an all time favourite. Loved a bunch of scenes but definitely wanted this movie to be more hilarious than it was. It was still pretty hilarious. Writing was okay. Story was okay. It was an over all good comedy and late night flick. I liked it.

3.5/5

Everything is Illuminated (4.5)




A 2005 directorial debut for Liev Schreiber, based on the novel by the same title by Jonathan Safran Foer.

A young jewish man loses his grandmother and realizes that he never really knew his grandparents, especially their lives before they immigrated to America from Ukraine. He enjoys collecting things, specifically family artifacts, so he decides to go to Ukraine to discover his families past and add to his collection. He in lists the help of a local named Alex who ends up being beyond eccentric. What Jonathan finds on his journey he will never forget.

This is one of my all time favourite movies. This is also one of my all time favourite books/authors. The book is amazing. It's different than the movie but together they are double fantastic. If you like the movie please read the book, it will answer some questions and vice versa.

Big Elijah Wood fan. He is amazing in this role. I really, really, really liked him throughout the entire movie. This is another film that I have no idea who else would have played Jonathan if Elijah had not. The movie would've been ruined...maybe not ruined, but definitely not as good. Such a good actor. Love it.

Eugene Hutz who plays Alex and just so happens to be the lead singer of one of my life favourite bands Gogol Bordello (check it out, they're so good) was amazing. I am always surprised at how well he can act. Don't ask me why. It's not like it's the first time a singer is also an actor, but he was extra impressive. Once again, no idea who else could have played Alex. He was even better than Elijah in this movie and for me to say that is the biggest of big deals. Double thumbs up. So hilarious.

I think Liev did a wonderful job of getting this movie just right. It was his first movie as a director but you wouldn't of been able to tell. At least I couldn't. Hat tip to you good sir.

The dog was amazing. I love that dog. I want that dog. And Alex's grandpa...fantastic character. Brilliant. So hilarious.

Well written. Well adapted. Amazing characters. Hilariousness to the max. The story is beautiful. I cried for sure, a lot. The balance and flow from one emotion to the next is flawless. I love this film.

Love it.

4.5/5

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Made in Dagenham (4)




A new movie looking at the true events surrounding a group of machinist that worked for a Ford plant in Dagenham, England in 1968. They began fighting for one thing: equal pay for women. With 187 women in one factory who walked out on strike and never gave up until they got the respect and equality they deserved.

I love a good based on true events film. This one was no acception. In fact, it's more powerful than ever seeing how I'm a woman and seeing what my not so distant sisters (if you will) had to go through in order to lives their lives and make mine easier.

Sally Hawkins who played Rita was amazing. I wasn't sure of her at first but by the time her major speech came near the end you would be heartless to not get a little teared up and fall in love with her. Very powerful character and I think she did a great job.

A few bonuses: Bob Hoskins, love him! Loved him in this movie. Rosamund Pike, so beautiful and fantastic, always a treat. Miranda Richardson and every single scene with her was hilarious and magical.

Over all I liked this movie. There were some strange edits (at least I noticed) and they slowed down a little too much right before the climax, but nothing major. I liked how they kept the look natural and didn't try to fancy anything up a bit, including the actors involved. All were wonderful and real. Some more than others of course, but really good job with casting.

Humour. Intelligence. Strong story. Strong characters. Didn't make it blockbuster-esque, kept it real and down to earth. Very powerful and inspirational film.

4/5

Friday, November 19, 2010

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (4.5)




The epic story continues as Harry, Hermione and Ron begin the search for the Horcruxes. In a race against Voldermort's rapidly increasing army, Harry and all wizards must begin to make sacrifices, take life or death chances and in some cases walk away from those they love. The discovery of an old legend may change the outcome for both sides: the Deathly Hallows.

I am a huge Harry Potter fan. I've grown up with these characters so I feel an extra intense connection to everyone and everything. The nerd in me secretly believes there is a Hogwarts and that in an alternate reality I'm dating Harry Potter, but that's a whole other discussion...

I am one of those people who was glad when they announce it would be in two parts. The book covered so much, not only action and plot wise, but so much character development and interaction takes place, especially within the first half of the novel. Therefore, I knew this wasn't going to be a fast action and rapid paced film so the conversations were all the more delicious.

All actors involved have been absorbed into this world completely and you can see how intense their connections of their characters are. The most beautiful scenes were ones filled with behind-the-back faces and quick looks to one another. Of built up tension and a truly believable past between all characters...awesome.

An interesting note, at least for me, was I found myself paying more attention to Rupert (Ron) a lot more than in any other movie. I'm not sure why but he seems to really be blossoming as an actor these days and I look forward to seeing what he does next.

Dan(Harry) no shirt was a plus too. Heh...classic awkward emotional talking though. Classic.

And actually Emma (Hermione) was the least amount of annoying since the beginning of time so that was good for me too. Definite plus!

When the action started to happen though I was on the edge of my seat. Or bunched into a seat ball in anxiety. It was all really well done. The directing and script AND score were all so amazing. So amazing.

Only down side was that some of the scenes dragged on a little too long. They weren't boring, no, no, not at all. But they did need to have a more even pace when it came to scene changes and flow. It was so minor though that it didn't even matter.

Best moments: The dance scene, when the Horcrux opens, the end (obviously) and over all DOBBY!! *sigh*

Loved it. Cannot wait for the next one, it is going to rock me to the core. I liked where they ended it. I was worried about that but they picked the perfect spot. Hat tip for that!

Sit back. Enjoy the characters, get to know them even more and love the interactions that take place. Don't mistake carefully thought out dialogue/conversations for bad edits or whatnot and get bored. Just listen and you'll get how every word spoken is important.

Loved it!!

4.5/5

Monday, November 15, 2010

Easy A (4)




A nobody girl makes up a lie about sleeping with a boy. Then makes a deal with a nobody boy at her high school that she'll pretend to sleep with him at a party. Everything spirals down high from there. Suddenly everyone is either trying to pay her to have fake dates or hates her for what she has become.

Someone told me months ago that this was actually a good movie, but I still had my doubts. How would I be remotely interested and entertained by watching some girl pretend to be a slut?

I enjoyed it a lot.

The character Olive aka big skank was hilarious and amazing. Emma Stone is ace in this role. I really loved watching her. The way her character was written, how she spoke and dealt with things....well, let's just say that I wanted to be her best friend.

So many perfect one liners. So many scenes that had me completely surprised due to their overly fantastic hilariousness. I really had no idea this movie was going to be as funny as it was. Brilliant. I love surprises.

Ending = BRUTAL. It was awful. I was literally groaning over it. Really, really bad. Did I say bad...ya. Not even corn but like a corn field of bad. Which sucks because the film was really good up until the last 10 minutes.

Great character. A lot of familiar faces. Super wicked humour.

And Thomas Haden Church. *grin*

Perfect late night film. I still cannot believe how much I liked this movie...

4/5

Monday, November 8, 2010

Amores Perros (4)




An awful car accident connects three people who are all dealing with loss, regret, and life's harsh realities, all in the name of love.

This movie started off with a bang. Literally, gun shots. I was really involved with the story and the different characters but then they started to switch to one of the other three people and I lost my connection. In all honesty, I started to get pretty darn sleepy. I could relate to and be interested in 2 of the 3 characters but the model who messes up her leg did nothing for me. Not sure why, I just didn't give a rats ass.

I've always been a fan of Gael García Bernal who played Octavio and was one of the three main characters. I liked the character and his story. And the dog. Really did not like the dog fights, not because of the way they were filmed but because I hate animal fights. Makes me angry and sad. They did a good job of making it look like real fights though...I was right pissed when they happened.

The old man with the dogs I didn't get at first but I'm glad they wrap up the film by looking deeper into his story. I got to really understand and feel empathy for him. Also, amazing last shot. Beaut.

Great stories and generally good characters. I liked how they didn't make their stories connecting the main focus, if anything it was used as a transition rather than a turning or focus point. I liked that.

Over all good film. Boring for a good chunk though, but once you get past that bump it's all roller coaster from there.

4/5

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Black Book (4)




Original title: Zwartboek (2006, Netherlands).

A Jewish women tries to survive in Nazi occupied Holland but after her family is brutally murdered in front of her eyes she joins the Resistance and poses as a German women to infiltrate the Nazi headquarters in Holland. After many missions turn into traps the Resistance tries to find who is the traitor, but who could really kill their own people in order to save their own lives? Could she? One tiny book holds all the answers...

Carice van Houten who plays the main character Ellis was amazing. She defiantly rocked this movie. Not only did she look the role but she fit the role. I was completely convinced. Not sure the film would have been quite the same with someone else.

I enjoyed this story because it didn't follow the usually good guys or bad guys of WWII films. It didn't even seem to fall into the usually set up of Resistance-esque classics but rather it merged all of them together. It wasn't your every day war film and I liked that. So much more emphasis was on the characters rather than the action. This is definitely not an action movie but it is anything but boring.

It was based on a true story, so that already is in my good books. I love me a good story that actually happened, it's instantly easier to believe and therefore get sucked into.

Still not sure about the very beginning. They tried to do the whole her-in-the-future thing and then he looking back on the war. I feel like seeing her in the future at the very end would have been just as good. Actually, it would have been better because you immediately knew she was going to survive and that killed a little bit of the suspense as she experiences these life or death situations. You know she's going to make it. Ruined.

Still fantastic. You will enjoy this if you like war flicks.

4/5

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Zach Galifianakis: Live at the Purple Onion (5)




2006 live taping at the Purple Onion in San Francisco. This was back in the day when very few people, myself included, knew who this guy was and how fcking hilarious he is!

This is my new favourite stand-up since Robin Williams Live on Broadway. The thing with Zach that I love and cannot help but laugh constantly to are all his one liners. He's the king of one liners. Some comedians build this story or talk about one specific topic and throw in punch lines here and there. I like that sometimes but comedy for me needs to be more spontaneous, a little more random than a funny story.

He nails it. Every time. I mean, there really is NO way you can tell what he will say next which had me listening even harder and laughing even louder. Just...ridiculous. I'm laughing as I type this...

His face alone. His facial reactions and expressions are what get me the most. I cannot look at that guy anymore without chucking. Even a picture of him makes me smile. Hilarious. Just, fantastic.

I also liked how they broke away from his routine to show you a mock interview with his 'twin brother' Seth or his road trip to San Fran with his friend. Not as funny as the stand up for me but still hilarious. *head shake* So good.

Watch this movie if you need a good laugh. I give you a 100% laughter guarantee.

5/5

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Before Sunrise (5)




A must see from 1995. The original film who's sequel Before Sunset I fell in love with and had no idea there was a film that showed how they first met. I wish I had watched the films in order now that I've seen them both, but they are both such amazing films that it ultimately doesn't matter.

An American backpacker meets a french traveler on a train. After talking for most of the train ride, Jesse (Ethan Hawke) talks Celine (Julie Deply) into getting off the train and spending his last day in Europe exploring the city of Vienna. She agrees. Is it fate that put them on the train or just a happy coincidence? Regardless, as the day progresses, they both realize this will be the only day they have together and make the most of it. Could you really say goodbye after the best day of your life?

I liked this movie even better than Before Sunset. This film is perfect. The delicious conversations, the focus completely on the characters and those they interact with. The simple shots and casual scenes. Every word, every place they visited, every look was perfect. There is really nothing I would change about this film. It had my complete attention. Especially when they started having conversations that I have had myself. Almost the exact same words. So surreal to me that it added this extra layer of connection to the whole story.

Ethan and Julie are amazing together. Completely believable. It's almost sad to me to know they are actors and they really didn't fall in love and live this story. I really wish they had. It was that good.

I loved how it was real. They were clumsy and said stupid things and had the nervous laughter and the weird yet beautiful first kiss. Everything. Just awesome writing, direction and acting.

Ya. IF you didn't get it by now I am in love with this film. I could keep going and going but I'll save you the text.

This movie is one of my new favourites.
End.

5/5

Monday, November 1, 2010

Shine (3.8)




A 1996 Oscar winning biography focusing on the life and talent of pianist David Helfgott.

David has a tough childhood growing up with a controlling and sometimes abusive father who pushes him to play the piano. As David begins gaining popularity and winning awards his father begins to turn on David, forcing him to leave home. At music college David is the top of his class, until a life changing performance does just that, changes David forever. He is diagnosed with a mental illness and put into a psychiatric hospital. For awhile, David's life is on hold. Until he has a chance encounter that will change it all and put him back in the spotlight.

Geoffrey Rush plays David Helfgott. This is a once in a lifetime performance. He was astounding. He was this film for sure. He made it. Hence the Oscar win. Definitely deserved it!

The music was fantastic. The story is heartbreaking but uplifting at the same time. I love movies like this that remind you that life is never a straight line, that everyone experiences an innumerable amount of experiences that shape them. Very inspirational.

This movie was different from other biography type films I have seen. They didn't try to make David come across as some hero. They didn't elaborate on his personal struggles and strife. They just showed us how it was for him. Plain and simple and perfect. There was a perfect balance between story and character. I got to know David so well and also everyone around him at the same time while getting deeper into the story that was David's life. Fantastic.

Only complaint is sometimes they stayed on one part of his life just a little too long. I guess that was it, I'm not entirely sure. I just found my attention coming and going during certain parts of the film. Mostly during the second half of the movie. Not entirely sure why but it did.

And the ending. Not sure if I really liked it or not.

Geoffrey Rush...so good!!

3.8/5

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Teen Wolf (3.5)




Scott wakes up one day and starts going through some changes. One second he's a teenaged boy and the next he's a teen wolf. He can finally become more than average, but at what price? Is Scott himself, or is he the wolf?

Man I love 80's flicks. I think I've seen this before but it was just as fun this time around. This movie was weird in a good way and such a feel-good film. It's nothing special, the story wont knock you off your chair and the acting is about as good as 80's comedy can get, but the whole film is so entertaining. You just sit and watch and smile. It's awesome.

I didn't laugh as much as I should have for how ridiculous some of the scenes were but that being said I still had a big smile on my face for about 80% of the movie. It's more fun than anything. Michael J. Fox did a great job.

If you like 80's movies, goofy comedies or are looking for a no-brainer, fun movie than you'll like this.

...I kinda want to learn the Teen Wolf dance now.

3.5/5

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog (4.5)




How is it that I haven't seen this movie until now, I have no idea! It seemed like this was made entirely for me. Magical.

A nerdy man strives to be the next all-star villain called Dr. Horrible. Two things are in his way: the girl of this dreams and the little problem of having to kill someone to get the title he wants. Oh, that and Captain Hammer!

This short movie was bursting with hilarity. I was super sad when it ended, I definitely could've watched another hour of it. Easily.

I finally get the Neil Patrick Harris obsession. I really, really, really do. My little heart is bursting with fandom right now. I might have to fan girl scream. *squeee*

Okay, right, that's over with.

Joss Whedon, you're a God. This had Whedon written all over it. A cinematic genius. It's like Buffy, Princess Bride, Kick-Ass and something else that is awesome came together and made a baby. The baby called Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog.

Everyone was awesome. The music was amazing. I cannot believe how much I loved all the musical numbers. I was laughing my face off the entire time. Ridiculous and amazing!

...I think I'm going to go watch this again. Too much fun.

Only one complaint: why couldn't it have been longer!

4.5/5

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Hereafter (3.5)




A psychic tries to hide from his gift and attempts to live a normal life. A woman dies in a tsunami and goes to the after life but is brought back to life yet cannot escape the images she saw. A boy loses his twin brother and cannot cope with the lose. One day their lives will collide, but why?

I was looking forward to this film. I was excited to see Hollywood trying to make a paranormal movie like this one. Any other non-horror film, especially concerning psychics, is laugh worthy. You cannot take them seriously. The image of the short lady in the Poltergeist films or some random person with frizzy hair, weird eyes and a cat comes to mind. I had my hopes up that they would have a more realistic portrayal of that side of the paranormal.

The film didn't quite match my expectations but that being said I definitely didn't hate it. I enjoyed watching this film. The story was really good but they didn't get deep enough into it for some reason. They kept going from character to their stories and back again so much that they only skimmed the surface of what this films full potential should have been. I felt that the script should have been looked over 2 or 3 more times before they filmed it.

Matt Damon was good in this movie. I liked seeing him play a non-action movie role. He didn't blow my mind or anything but he was still good. Thumbs up.

I was really hoping that they would show a little more about what it is like living as a psychic. They touched base on it but never went into details. Matt Damon's character was essential to this film but I felt like I never got to know him. I wanted and needed to get more from him to feel connected to him. To feel bad when he was suffering. I didn't get that at all and it wasn't his fault.

The story had more potential than they gave it but it was still good. I enjoyed watching this. A little boring at times and the ending is awful, but I'm still glad I went to see it. The ending had too much cheese for me. Especially after having the bare minimum amount of cheese up until the ending. Crappy. I need movies to start and end strong.

Didn't hate it, didn't lose my pants over it, but glad I saw it.

3.5/5

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Paranormal Activity 2 (3)

I had heard that this movie was better than the first one so I had my hopes up. I may have had them too high. I like the first one better still. This one didn't have enough action in it. When it did, it was good, but I felt there was too much space in between things happening. The things that were happening were not as intense as I wanted them to be. Also, watching this movie in a packed theatre didn't help at all and ruined the experience for me a little.

I liked how they brought the two stories together. I'll leave it at that. Still wasn't a surprise to me though. Seemed obvious once they let the first bit of the puzzle surface. I knew the ending about 45 minutes before it happened. Judging by the sound in the theatre when it did happen makes me believe I was one of the few who did. So maybe you will still be shocked.

The baby scenes were awesome.
And that poor dog...

Still good. Still interesting. Still very well done in terms of effects when they had them. Characters were not as appealing to me for some reason.

Not as impressed but still glad I went to see it.

3/5

Monday, October 25, 2010

Udaan (3.5)

A new film from India (2010).

Rohan gets expelled from school and returns home to his abusive father he hasn't seen in 8 years and his 6 year old step-brother he never knew existed. Will he be able to except his old life for what it is or fight for it to be what he wants it to be?

Rajat Barmecha who played the main character Rohan was amazing. I kept feeling like I had seen him in other movies but it turns out this was his first film! Which is even more crazy because his performance made this movie. He was awesome.

The story itself is what keeps you watching. This film is still pretty messy in my opinion. Scenes seem almost random at time with random shots that just don't need to be there. Birds flying. Tree leaves. People walking for 10 seconds.

Strange.

And distracting. Yet, the story was so good that I was glued. It was hard for me to stay distracted for long, even when all this randomness was thrown about.

All the characters have so many layers. The fear, suspense and anxiety that goes along with this film never ended. Every time something good happened I would just be waiting for him to run into his father. Or mess up again. Or for his little brother to get involved. Every time the father stepped into the room I was nervous. Every. Time.

Watch this for the story (I know, I said story about a million times now). You'll forgive every flaw because of it.

3.5/5

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Hairspray (4)

I don't generally like musicals. I was looking for something to distract me and lighten my mood and this movie was perfect for that. The dancing is pretty awesome too.

Not going to lie, the story was pretty great. I liked the characters and, even though it was a musical, I thought that the corny level was pretty low. Well, until the end. There was no getting around that though.

Zac Efron. As always. You rock my world.

John Travolta as a women who is married to Christopher Walken. Yes, please. More of that! Hilarious.

Nikki Blonsky who starred as Tracy was pretty good. I didn't feel connected to her at all though. Compared to everyone else I'd say she was my least favourite but not to the point of ruining the movie or anything.

This movie is really fun. Even if you don't like musicals but are looking for something fun, light and entertaining, you will like this. I had a blast. Thought it was really well done!

Trust me, I'm more surprised than you are.

4/5

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Inside (4)

I'm starting to think that the French can make a better horror movie than the Japanese.

A pregnant women loses her husband in a car accident and has trouble couping with the loss. The closer her due date, the more withdrawn she is. One night her door bell rings...what's on the other side of the door isn't what or who you think it is.

Here is what you need to know: a pregnant women and giant scissors.

Ya. That's right. Even the toughest person will cringe and shout while watching this movie. I was pretty much gagging for most of it. Some I could barely watch. Jesus this is an intense and bloody mess...they just don't hide anything.

That being said, it's a spectacular movie, especially for a horror movie. The story is good. The acting is amazing. The effects are ridiculously good. I would say this is one of my new favourite horror flicks (next to Martyrs and 7 Days, both also being French films).

If this doesn't slightly scar you then maybe you should sign yourself up with a therapist. Such a great movie to cause so much emotional trauma. If you love horror you'll dig this flick.

You wont be disappointed.

4/5

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Social Network (4)

The facebook movie.

I am not a fan of facebook. I have it and use it but it doesn't make me happy anymore. So I guess it's easy to say I wasn't looking forward to this film. Actually, I had planned to never see it because I didn't think it would be interesting to me at all and would ultimately suck.

...I was wrong.

This time it feels so good to be wrong.

This movie had everything I was looking for.

I loved Jesse Eisenberg who played Mark. He nailed it. I was and still am super impressed. I liked him before in Zombieland and Adventureland as well (weird, I never made that connection before) but this role, for me, solidified his awesomeness. It is easy to say I am an avid fan now. Double, spinning high fives. Jesse made this film.

The movie started out so perfectly. I was impressed with how they set this film up. Right from the first sentence I was hooked onto every work Mark said and was instantly along for the ride. The amazing soundtrack definitely helped too.

The story itself that I didn't really know too much about was instantly fascinating. It really sucked me in and kept me there the entire time. Even when the legal mumble started happening I was following every word and was really emotionally tied to the characters.

I don't know if I liked how it ended but I'm not entirely disappointed. The pace was set and flowed perfectly up until the last 15 or 20 minutes. I think they did that on purpose though, sort of mirroring his life. It started fast and picked up but then dropped right back down.

Joseph Mazzello who played Mark's friend Dustin was good. He wasn't in much of this movie but I couldn't not look at him when he'd enter a scene. Don't know why. Okay, okay. He's the Jurassic Park kid but I'd really like to see him star in a major, leading role sometime soon. He drew my attention right away so it must be for a reason... *shrug*

Justin Timberlake. Don't make me go liking you now...you're so close. So close. You're a funny chap but this almost sold me on you. Interested to see what you have in store.

Great acting. Great story. Amazing writing.

It's great. See it.

4/5

Red (3.5)

The new action flick with a stellar old school cast: Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Morgan Freeman and Helen Mirren.

About a group of retired CIA coming together to solve one final case: who is trying to kill them and why?

Bruce. Dear, dear Bruce. Why is it that you must rock so? You kick ass dude! The best fight scenes were with you. Some of the moves were mind blowing awesomeness. Ace. Just, fight five sir. I just want to have a Scotch with you...

Morgan Freeman. Always a delight. Love your stuff. John Malkovich. Thank you for not sucking and actually surprising the hell out of me. I really enjoyed you in this film, which is way more than I can say for some of your more recent film/character choices. Helen Mirren. You're a class act. Beautiful, especially with an automatic in your hand. Whew. I hope I'm as cool as you one day.

I really liked Karl Urban in this film too. I lost track of him over the last few years but this movie made me pay attention again. Look forward to what he has coming up next.

Action was awesome. Some really funny scenes too. The flow of this film was just right and some of the sequences were perfect. Not a half bad story but nothing that will blow you away either. Go for the action. There were some one-on-one hang to hand fight scenes that had me jumping out of my seat. Literally. Quite embarrassing yet epic.

Plus. Come on. Bruce Willis. 'Nough said...

3.5/5

Life as We Know It (2.5)

Man, I had already forgotten what the movie was called. I guess that's a bad intro to my review for it...

Girl with a plan. Guy who's plan is to be a manslut. Enter baby. End.

The new romcom that in my opinion isn't very romantic or filled with laughs so I think it should really be dubbed the possibleharshlovedrama. Ya, that works better.

As a 'romcom' it was about as general as they come. You know the ending, you know the characters. The main story twist I didn't really see coming but that's because I knew nothing about the movie before going in to see it but I'm sure if I had watched the trailer than nothing would have been a surprise. Also, it happens pretty much right away so, yeah. Story in general...meh. I mean, it's better than a lot of the other romcoms floating around out there but still. Average, meh-worthy tale.

Why do I give it a 2.5/5 then? Here is why: There were some scenes that I found myself grinning like an idiot so they had me there with some cute baby stuff and a few good scenes. Katherine Heigl you've done it again. I just can't hate you, even when I look forward to not liking you, I also walk away satisfied. Creepy. You're good girl. Josh Duhamel was pretty good looking. That was a plus.

I just didn't believe them together. They didn't fit so no matter how hard they tried to make me believe it as actors I still couldn't. They seemed like buds the whole time. Strange.

Stop with the close-close-close up make-out scenes without music. I don't need to see, hear and feel when they make out. Gross. Just gross.

My one friend hated it. The other felt about the same way I did. Wasn't awful but wasn't really worth going to the theatre to see.

I doubt anyone will watch this in 5 years.

3/5

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Martyrs (4.5)

A French horror film from 2008. This movie will scar you for life.

A girl is kidnapped and torchered when she is younger but somehow escapes. She spends the next 15 years trying to recover while secretly trying to find the people that had done this to her. When she does...blood. Yet, just when you think the story is done, a completely new plot begins to emerge and evolve...one that you just didn't see coming. Or wanted to.

I don't scare easily like I've said before. I enjoy a good gore film here and there but generally laugh at the effects because it is so rare to find a horror film where the story and the gore are realistic and work together. This film had that. They did it so well, almost too well.

Some scenes I had to look away. I have a very vivid imagination and sometimes it can be dark but even this was too much sometimes. It just...ugh...and they show everything. Disgusting. I felt sick at times.

Suspense. Story. Thriller. Horror. Gore. Emotions. Acting.

Fantastic.

I still cannot believe how good this movie was. Not even as a horror film but just as a film. Amazing.

Don't see this if you don't like blood/awful torcher type things. Eek.

Still don't know how I feel about the very, very end though. Still haven't decided if it worked or not...

4.5/5

Paranormal Activity (3.5)

Getting ready for the Hallowe'en season means an increase in the watching of horror-esque films.

I had already seen Paranormal Activity when it first came out in Canada and I went to the theatre...alone...and loved it. I don't get scared easily in films but I do love the heightened scenes and general fun thrill that comes with a good horror flick. Paranormal activity held my interest and I thought it was one of the better hand-held-cam type horror movies that I have seen.

I'm sure you know the story. A couple begins experiencing paranormal activity in their home so they decide to try and document their experiences. Suddenly things start happening more frequently and continue to get worse as they film. Not all hauntings are ghosts...

I am very much into the ghost shows and really enjoy researching and discussing the paranormal on a completely serious note. I liked this movie because it was like watching a good episode of a ghost television program but having it show you everything that is happening. Okay, the acting is less than average and the guy in this film, I just...I wanted to dick punch him so bad on more than one occasion. Yet that didn't really matter that much.

The suspense was killer (heh, puns). At first the movie is pretty damn boring. Nothing happens and the chick is freaking out and what not. Then stuff starts picking up...then more...then wham. I still would love to know how they did some of the effects that they show 'cause man, no idea how they pulled some of it off on that low of a budget. Awesomeness.

All in all it was way better than I thought, I actually semi-jumped at parts and the suspense is perfection. Definitely more fun with people who scare easy...

3.5/5
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...