Monday, April 30, 2012

Only You (3.5)


The classic 1994 romcom by Norman Jewison ( Moonstruck ) about a woman how flies to Europe in an attempt to find her one true love.

I have never NOT liked a Robert Downey Jr. ( Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, Due Date ) movie, even if I thought that I would hate it...I always love it. I guess there is just something about his acting that I really like and I'm not just talking about his handsome face and great sense of humour (although it doesn't seem to hurt). He just has a certain way of taking a character and giving them certain facial expressions or habits that are interesting or just over all entertaining. He makes me laugh and I liked that.

I was surprised by how much I liked Marisa Tomei but I know that it was mostly because of how natural and amazing she is on screen with Bonnie Hunt. These two fine ladies made me laugh throughout the entire movie.

The script is ridiculous. They knew it was and used that to find an amazing cast who could bring the comedy down to earth and make the movie, in the end, a really good romantic tale. It's entertaining enough that I didn't feel like I need chocolate, Kleenex and fuzzy slippers but had just enough 'awe' moments to make my heart flutter. I am still shocked by how much I liked this movie.

I think this just confirmed my new obsession with going back and watching old 80s and 90s romcoms. You are warned, there is more to come.

Hurray the 90s!!


Colombiana (4)


A 2011 action/crime Olivier Megaton film about a young girl watches as her parents are killed by a major crime boss and seeks revenge 14 years later.

You can never really tell if a revenge/action film is going to be a decent movie or just filled with explosions and unnecessary car chases. This movie was happily not anything like that. The story itself is far more interesting, emotional and in depth.

I think my liking of this movie depending highly on Zoe Saldana and her performance. She actually blew me away. I haven't seen her in that many movies so I wasn't sure what to expect but she rocked it. She did the action just as well as the more tense and emotional moments.

I liked how this movie jumped into the story right away and did a great job with the characters and continuing a consistent motion with every scene advancing the plot. Sounds easy, but the more movies I watch the more I notice how easy it is to mess it up.

Good action. Great suspense and tension. Some really cool fight/revenge/badass assassin moments and just an all around good movie. Sure, the basic idea behind the story has been done before and it's not hard to guess the ending but that didn't make it any less enjoyable.


Monday, April 23, 2012

The Cabin in the Woods (4.5)


The less you know about this movie the better it will be. You need to sit back and accept what is happening and just enjoy it. If you do that you will see that this is actually a brilliant movie, especially concerning the script, from the one and only Joss Whedon. And if you like Joss Whedon you will love this movie.

It was witty, it was stupid in the most hilarious way and because it didn't take itself too seriously the gore was surprising, the action was fast paced and the story allowed itself to go deeper than one would suspect. I loved the layers of this film and I thought when coupled with the horror/thriller and the humour that this was the ultimate 'joke' horror film. Comedy horror is not an easy bridge to gap and I thought this movie did it well.

Director/writer Drew Goddard did a great job. He nailed the horror side of it while still keeping the audience interested in the over all outcome of the core of the story and ultimately the characters.

Joss Whedon does characters like no one else. He creates real people based on harsh stereotypes yet in the end throws the stereotype back in the audiences faces. This time around it was the stoner teen character and man-oh-man did I love it. So good.

Only issues: the pace slows while the plot begins to reveal itself and I found it distracting but I see why it was necessary - you can't keep uping the pace without completely losing the story. Other thing was the graphics. At times they were kind of crap which was also distracting.

I liked this movie a lot and so did the other people in the theatre as I could tell via the bursts of laughters, the screams and the merge of yelling things out at the movie. Awesome.

Check it out.

Bonus: Chris Hemsworth ( Thor). ;)


Haywire (3)


2011 Action flick by Steven Soderbergh about a super soldier is set up after a mission goes wrong and when she avoids her assassination, she looks for those who tried to kill her.

This movie had some of the most realistic fight scenes I have ever seen! I also loved how this is maybe the first action movie I have ever seen that had no audio or sound effects playing during the action scenes. There was some music playing here and there but once the fighting started they cut the track and just used the raw audio of the action scenes. Loved that. Made it seem so real and believable.

While the cast is amazing: Ewan McGregor (Beginners, I Love You Philip Morris ), Michael Fassbender (Hunger), Channing Tatum (The Eagle), Michael Douglas and Antonio Banderas, I wasn't really impressed with any one performance but I did like how the main character played by Gina Carano was believable as a trained solider and her movements were smooth and precise. I liked the story too but found that it didn't go deep enough to really shock me or make the ending seem like a surprise. Also, the plot twist just kind of lame and slowed the pace of the film.

Loved the hand to hand combat though, there were some amazing scenes in this movie and that is what it is all about. If you like action movies I suggest watching this. The acting and story are decent enough but it's the fighting that makes this film worth while.


Friday, April 20, 2012

Contraband (3)


In order to help his brother-in-law from a drug lord after he messes up a run, a former smuggler goes back into the business for one last run.

A few people told me to watch this movie as they found it realistic, fast paced and a good suspense/action flick. I guess the bar was set a little too high because, while it was an entertaining and interesting movie, I wasn't really impressed. Here are some reasons why:

1. I found that Mark Wahlberg ( The Fighter) was not giving it his all. I like him in action movies but I found his character and therefore his performance annoying at times.

2. It had a great story at the base, but as soon as more characters were involved and emotions were on the rise I thought that the story lost some of it's meaning and the big trip lost a lot of it's purpose.

3. It had action and built up nicely and then...a ship. And they are on the ship. Yes, here is where they added in some needed comedy to lighting the mood a bit before diving back into to the dark stuff but they lost me here completely. I was BORED. Bored. Bleh.

4. When the action did come back my lack of interest before gave me time to figure out exactly what was going to happen in the film so the big climax and story twist was boring because I saw it coming waaaay before it happened. I also felt like they tried too hard to stretch out the suspense before the climax and by doing so cut the suspense and surprise in half.

I liked the general story. I would love to read the book that the movie was based on as I think that would fill in a lot of the blanks that I just talked about. I wasn't overly impressed with any one performance but I did enjoy to comedy that was thrown in by the supporting cast. I didn't hate this movie and I did enjoy myself while watching it but once it was over I couldn't help but only think of the flaws and now, 2 days later, I know I am not interested in seeing it again.

Good action, an interesting story but the suspense and surprise factor was too low for me to stay interested.


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Larry Crowne (3.5)


2011 comedy/drama written, directed and starring TOM HANKS (the best). Larry Crowne loses his job because he does not have a post secondary education. So he heads to college for the first time and turns his life around.

I love Tom Hanks. I wish Tom Hanks was my dad...or maybe an uncle OR I would even settle for a neighbour (please be friends with me, Tom Hanks!).

I wasn't sure how to prepare myself for this film though as I love Hanks but the movie received bad reviews and then sort of disappeared. I thought I'd chance it and I am glad that I did because it's a really cute, little movie.

Tom Hanks ( The Burbs, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close )was great as always. Julia Roberts ( Eat Pray Love )was bearable but I haven't been able to stand her for years now so that is actually impressive. What I love most about the acting in this film is that I truly felt that every character gave something to this movie. It is, after all, a movie about people and I thought that the lack of any one character would have made the film less enjoyable.

I thought that it lagged near the end and that the last 30 minutes should've been compressed into a 10 minute ending that would've kept the pace of the movie and hence would've kept my attention on the film and not to the dirt on my living room floor (I need to clean...).

Before the ending though I loved the characters and I laughed literally out loud several times and some times uncontrollably (my neighbours probably think I'm crazy).

...the one thing I cannot get over is how Julia Robert's character was the main person who changed Larry's life. I honestly just do not see it. She is not even really a part of his life until the end and I think that's the one major flaw in this movie. It should've stuck with being more of a comedy and less of a romance but then it switches over and becomes this weird chick flick and it just didn't work.

If you like cute, witty drama/comedies or Tom Hanks or feel like a light hearted movie then I suggest this flick. It won't change your life but it will make you smile.

Bonus: Wilmer Valderrama. It's good to see his face again. Oh, how he made me laugh!

3.5/5 (I would give it a 3/5 but it did make me laugh several times)

John Carter (3)


2011 action/adventure/fantasy movie by director Andrew Stanton.

John Carter wakes up in a weird place that is in the midst of a war only to realize that he is not so far away from home as he originally thought.

Okay, this movie did not do well in the box office and didn't make near enough money to even break even but I honestly think that it just didn't come out at the right time and that people refused to go see it without even caring what it's about.

I liked it. I mean, it was not a great film but I would totally watch it again and was really entertained while watching it.

It was looong though. It was about 30 minutes too long. The story is really fast paced but then it slowed down near the END, which is the OPPOSITE of what any movie should attempt to do. The reason it slowed was because the movie had to stop and go back to the events that were shown at the beginning of the movie and it just didn't work and halted the flow of the story.

Taylor Kitsch was good as John Carter and I thought he was kind of sexy in this movie. Maybe it was due to the fact that he wasn't wearing pants for a lot of it and running around with weird alien weapons...alas, I liked him. his performance wasn't nearly as painful as I thought it would be. Hat tip my man.

Just like every other super action movie that decides it wants to be sentimental here and there the emotional aspects of the character and the story didn't break past the fourth wall. It rarely does though so I wasn't upset by not caring about the 'romance' bits of this film.

The rest of the movie and your liking of it will be up to you. If you can accept this alternate world and these strange creatures and allow yourself to sit back and enjoy the action the this movie may very well surprise you. If you, on the other hand, have already decided that you hate this movie even though you haven't seen it then you will hate this movie.

I thought it was cool and liked the main character and the story itself is interesting. The effects are meh at times and the movie is far too long but in the end I am glad I watched it.


Friday, April 13, 2012

My Blog's Archive - aka. Blogger Fail

Hello My Lovely Readers,

As you may have noticed, the blog archive shows up as a huge white block. I've been trying to fix this but apparently it's a blogger wide issue:

"Known Issues for Blogger: Some users are experiencing problems with the Blog...: Some users are experiencing problems with the Blog List widget. We're working on a fix and will update this post when we have more information..."

Hopefully it is fixed soon. Until then, sorry for the ugly white blocks and lack of clicking abilities to see my older posts.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Red State (3.5)


In a small town in the middle of America, 3 boys are kidnapped and wake up to find themselves in the hands of a hard core religious group.

There was a lot of Hype around this film last year when Kevin Smith was doing these small screenings across North American instead of doing a wide release of the movie. I thought that was a cool idea but people ended up talking more about the tour instead of the actually movie, so I didn't know what to expect.

What I thought it was going to be it definitely wasn't. I thought this was a great film and I was really impressed with Kevin Smith. The thought the script was interesting and liked the cast. The whole plot was interesting and thought provoking. This is far from a slap-stick comedy!

John Goodman was great. I thought that the main cast worked really well together.

A story that stops to look at how humans view the difference between right in wrong in terms of who can be wrong if they truly and utterly believe that what they are doing is right and between the Government or super power who do what they want because they can is always appealing to me and not easy to portray.

There were some messy transitions during the film and some weird script jumps that I just assume were caused by final edits and scene cuts. Regardless, slightly rough around the edges but nothing major.

I dug it.


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Our Idiot Brother (2.5)


2011 film by Jesse Peretz about a brother who is a bit of a hippie and falls victim to secrets and lies regarding his sisters.

This movie was kind of a let down. It wasn't what it advertised itself to be and from all the reviews that it read via other movies to watch lists I read it really didn't live up to the hype.

Don't get me wrong, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Banks and Zooey Deschanel were all amazing and I enjoyed the basic idea behind this film but it kept pushing that it was a comedy and I just didn't see it. Sure, it was a light dramatic comedy but I would definitely not call this a pure comedy.

Even with Paul Rudd being a nice, charming hippie who was stupid and clueless and therefore entertaining to watch he just wasn't funny to me. I was disappointed because I wanted lots of laughs but really all I got were face palms and humour sighs over the silly things that were happening.

If you're looking for a nice, soft flick to watch while making dinner or playing with your friends dogs then it's a great time filler but other then that I would've rather watched Conan again. *shrug*


Conan the Barbarian (3)


2011 action/fantasy flick based on the original film.

This movie is all about the ACTION! The acting isn't mention worthy, the story has obviously been done before for the original but this movie had all the blood, fights and weaponry that I needed and wanted.

There really isn't much more to this film. If you enjoyed the original Conan film then you will most likely enjoy this movie. I thought Jason Momoa was great as the new Conan but once again no one performance really blew me away as this movie wasn't made to be an Oscar winner.

Action, action, action and blood. If you like these things, you will love this film. I was actually impressed with the fight choreography and weapons in this movie and I now regret not seeing it in theatres. I should have because it's these kind of mindless action flicks that make your $12.00 movie ticket worth while.

Take your chances, don't expect miracles. I was highly entertained.


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Darkest Hour (3)


2011 sci-fi/action film by Chris Gorak about 5 young people who try to survive in Moscow after an alien invasion.

I thought this movie was going to be cheesy, especially after I read a couple of reviews. I can see why this film didn't amaze people but it is far from bad. In fact, I thought it was pretty entertaining and interesting. But then again, I'm a sucker for sci-fi so that's probably a huge factor in my liking it.

Emile Hirsch is definitely a way better actor than this film and character allowed him to be. I still liked him, but there wasn't much to any character to be honest so it's hard to discuss acting.

I will say that the people they chose to play the running, scared females were less annoying and had a lot more clothing on then in most films with those type of characters. Also, unlike Transformers the main chick (aka Olivia Thirlby) didn't spend the entire movie running in 6" heels but instead realized she should take them off within the first mile of running. Yup. Makes sense, even if it makes you look less sexy when you're about to die...shame.

I liked the general idea behind this movie. I liked the whole concept behind the aliens. I wasn't overly taken with the look of them once their shields were down and you could get a good look at them...but they were neat when they blew up!

Interesting story with some new concepts and less annoying young people running around trying to survive made for an entertaining film. I liked it. To each their own. Give it a chance though if you like sci-fi/alien invasion flicks. Just don't expect a lot of sustenance.


Monday, April 2, 2012

Carnage (4)


2011 dramatic comedy by Roman Polanski about 2 married couples who get together to discuss their sons after one of them wounds the other in a fight.

I had no idea what to expect from this movie. I honestly thought it was just a drama with a couple of laughs but it ended up being a really hilarious film with drama on the side. What a lovely surprise.

And what an AMAZING cast. Seriously. Kate Winslet ( The Life of David Gale) has been a long time favourite of mine and I love her in everything, including this film. Especially when things start heating up...just amazing to see her on the screen. Love how natural her performances are. Christoph Waltz ( Water for Elephants ) was great. He was pretty serious in this movie but worked so well with everyone else. I liked Jodi Foster ( Nell ) more in this movie than I think I ever have before. Seriously, she was perfect in this role. Last but not least John C. Reilly comes up and steals the show from everyone. I was stunned when his character loses it and I loved every minute of it.


I mean, the story itself is basic and sounds like it would be boring but this isn't a movie about a story, it's a movie about people and these four characters are perfect. Written so well and came across as so natural and powerful, AND hilarious...

I am actually surprised by how much I liked this movie. I mean, the first bit seemed pretty straight forward but then it just takes off and doesn't slow down. Very well done and so funny.

I could watch it again right now. I also would love to see this as a play.


The Trotsky (1)


A high school student learns he was named after Leon Trotsky and begins to live his life just like him and try to change the world.

I only watched 30 minutes of this movie. I only watch that much because that was as much as I could take. I have never not finished watching a movie before, even the really bad ones, because sometimes movies can swing back around and surprise you...

I don't think this one would have. For one, I didn't find the story interesting at all. Secondly, I didn't find it in the least bit funny or entertaining AT all. I was actually un-amused with all the characters. Third, I was so bored that I therefore had no care what so ever in seeing the remainder of the film so I opted to make a pizza and play Scrabble instead (true story).

I would give this movie a 0/5 but I do feel slightly bad for not watching the whole thing so I will give it the benefit of the doubt that I would have maybe giggled at least once before the 2 hours were over (though I doubt it). Also, Jay Baruchel who plays the main character is actually a decent actor and I have liked him in the past so I shall not judge him on this.

Yup. That's it. Watch if you want. IMdB has a rating of 6.8/10 so maybe it's just me. Regardless, I feel no shame in wanting to spend those 2 hours NOT watching this movie.

The most hilarious part about this movie is that it was supposed to be a comedy.


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