Saturday, November 29, 2008

Transporter 3---Kill the Girl, Save the Movie

The first Transporter was great, it demanded a second.
The second was completely awful. I kept expecting the Spy Kids to show up and fly Jason Statham out of that terrible film. I did enjoy that bit with the fire-hose though.
In Transporter 3, Jason Statham reminds everyone who kicks the most butt.
He doesn't use a fire-hose (disappointed me) to beat the dickens out of all the bad guys in this one. Instead Statham just uses his fists and his suit jacket.
He punches like some kind of a machine.

"You must be the smart one."
"No. I'm the big one."

The film does like to pretend that Frank Martin (Jason Statham) and his car are both indestructible, but not in such a distractingly idiotic way as in Transporter 2. I don't wanna say too much, but Frank does get smashed through a cinderblock wall like it's nothing, then continues to fight as if he's just had a minute in the corner with Paulie Pennino (That's Rocky's manager/corner man in case you're like, "Who the f-word is Paulie Pennino?")

Now the girl.
The mandatory hotty.
Natalya Rudakova plays Valentina, the annoying annoying mysterious but still annoying hotty in this action flick.
Like some kind of Ukrainian lingerie-modeling Jar-Jar-Binks-type slut.
Honestly, I kept comparing her to Jar-Jar.
I was wishing someone would either shoot her or toss her out of the car while it passed over a bridge spanning a dried-up river bed.

"Meesa ho-bag! Meesa want roast duck with pepper and frozen wine and--"
"Shoulda fastened your seat-belt like I told you."

It was good to see Jeroen Krabbe (Dr. Charles Nicols from The Fugitive) back in an American film. I mean, he was in Ocean's Twelve, but does that count?

Aside from Jar-Jar, my only complaint would be about the fight choreography. Jason Statham was looking better and badder than ever, but there wasn't as much creativism. The film didn't set any new bars or even meet previous ones. The fight scenes were generic and unoriginal.

Loved it though. I'll just pretend the second movie never happened. Even if the fight scenes in the second were awesome.

Transporter 3.
Check it out.


Australia---Jackman's Sexy Shower

OK, so, I saw Australia in theaters Thanksgiving day and then went to the store and saw Jackman on People magazine's cover as "Sexiest Man Alive!" and immediately made the connection.
Aside from the completely out-of-the-ordinary, bucket-of-water, slow-motion, un-asked-for shower scene with Jackman, I totally loved this movie. I got all weepy and crap a few times, stupid allergies...
My small complaint would be regarding the lack of a continuous theme, or a main theme for that matter. Sure, the story flowed and everything was connected, but I was left wondering what Baz (Director of Moulin Rouge and Romeo and Juliet) wanted me to take away from his masterful film. What was the moral? You can't tell me that the creator of the Red Curtain Trilogy made Australia without a moral in mind.

I was also glad to see the Australia club starring in the film. Hugh Jackman (Wolverine and the best Curly in Oklahoma I've ever seen), Nicole Kidman (Moulin Rouge, The Golden Compass, The Invasion), David Wenham (300, Van Helsing--also with Hugh Jackman--, and Faramir from The Lord of the Rings) , and Jack Thompson (Original Sin and Leatherheads).
Honestly, pretty much the whole cast was from Australia, even King George.

I'm glad I got to see this movie, and Baz has proved once again that he is a masterful and diverse director.

But seriously, Wolverine's borderline Chippendales shower scene??? At least he had his jeans on...


Friday, November 21, 2008

Twilight---Romance or Thriller?

Even though I had to pee like a racehorse during the opening credits, I couldn't get out of my seat for one minute of Twilight.
The movie starts out almost exactly like Last of the Mohicans, and ends winking to the audience of the trilogy yet to come.

From start to finish I totally loved the cinematography of Twilight. The directing and editing styles didn't remind me of any other movie I've seen before--totally original. Director Catherine Hardwicke (Thirteen, Lords of Dogtown) must have a lot of creative juices. They must have mounted a camera on Peter Parker's shoulder for some of the shots, it seemed.

And, I admit to being wrong about my predictions of Twilight being miscast. The cast was almost perfect, with the exception of Rosalie and perhaps Dr. Carlisle.
The character Rosalie is lame enough to begin with, but Nikki Reed's (Thirteen, Lords of Dogtown) performance of her was even more lame. A very lame lame. Guess it helps to be friends with the director...
And Dr. Carlisle's character was supposed to be young but wise, however, Peter Facinelli's portrayal was just young and creepy--like a narrow-nosed version of Odo (shapeshifter from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine).

Bella and Edward (Kristen Stewart from In the Land of Women and The Messengers; Robert Pattinson from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire) were not only perfectly cast, but went together perfectly.
In the books (I read them in case you haven't figured it out) Bella was always awkward, and Edward was always serious and seemingly in pain. The whole relationship was portrayed perfectly. Pattinson, despite all my doubts, was the perfect Edward. Stewart was born to play Bella as well. She's beautiful, but she's not from another planet.

My only complaints, I suppose, were that the story seemed rushed. It was two hours long already, and there wasn't anything I would have cut out, but it felt rushed.

But, in all honesty, the first movie's job is to introduce the relationship between Edward and Bella, and to introduce Stephanie Meyer's (author of the Twilight book series)version of vampires.

The special effects were, sometimes, distractingly obvious and low-budget. I think I saw similar effects in Xena: Warrior Princess.

Overall, I completely loved this movie even though I thought it was just going to be a flop designed to lure Twilight fans.
For those who don't know; a Twilight fan would see this movie THREE TIMES even if it was terrible and directed by Ed Wood's retarded nephew or someone. I congradulate the Twilight's film crew for doing a fantastic job even though, honestly, they didn't have to.

I'm still left with the question, however:
Romance or Thriller? Has a film ever been both? If you count Will Smith's relationship with a certain manakin in I Am Legend then yes.
But I don't count that.

Either way, bring a date.


And I peed for over a minute in the bathroom after the movie, in case you were worried.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Quantum of Solace---Fantastic but Lacking...

Quantum of Solace picks up shortly after where the last one ended. Bond has Mr. White and is being pursued by bad guys who, I assume, want White back.
What happens after that all seems pretty clear. The plot didn't leave me confused like Casino Royale did. And we are reintroduced to most of the same cast as Royale.

I want to say that I was disappointed with Daniel Craig's (Bond) acting during the first half of the movie, but really he did ok. I can't specifically identify what I didn't like, but I know that something was missing.
He lacked that "I-just-killed-you-so-piss-off" attitude that he had in Royale.
It was like M (Judi Dench) kept playing off some kind of bad-boy Bond attitude that wasn't even there. She might as well have been talking about someone else half the time.

---massive complaint---
Even though the characters all connect to Casino Royale, and they talk about those Royale events throughout this film, I failed to see the PLOT connection between Solace and Royale. It was like the movie's writers were saying, "oh look, they're connected! See! He just said that Vesper chick's name so OBVIOUSLY the plots are connected!"
I wasn't fooled though...
---end of massive complait---

But the plot was original.
The main bad guy, Dominic Greene (the oober-creepy Mathieu Amalric who's been in nothing but French films 'til now), reminds me of the character Renard (Robert Carlyle) from The World is Not Enough. Creepiest CEO I've seen in a film.
---Note: Renard was the bald, creepy Russian psycho who couldn't feel pain.---

The film DID have some really intense and well-crafted fight scenes that did NOT disappoint. Start to almost finish was non-stop action.

I loved this movie, but, still, was mildly disappointed.


PS-In Solace's defense, I didn't like Royale the first time I saw it either. I plan to give this another go around.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Eagle Eye---Not Dumbed Down.

I had high expectations for Eagle Eye and they were exceeded.
I'm a big Shia LaBeouf fan, and I loved him in this movie.
I'm also a Michelle Monaghan (Mission Impossible: III, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang) fan, so this was a movie I'm surprised I didn't see sooner. She's a beautiful actress who still looks like an actual human being, instead of something plastic.

My only complaint is that sometimes the action scenes, namely the car pile-ups, were played out in ways that left me unable to follow them. I'd watch LaBeouf plow through a green light and cops behind him would suddenly start crashing and I'm sitting there going, "What happened? Did that cop hit something?"
Director D. J. Caruso needed to assemble those scenes better.
There was some really cool stuff in this film too.
I don't want to give too much away, but some of the scenes were very well choreographed.

Another thing I appreciate, something many film-makers are afraid to do, is that this movie doesn't "dumb things down" for you. If you aren't paying attention you will miss important, subtle little things and you won't know what's going on.
I always admire movies that aren't afraid to assume that I am intelligent.
I enjoy movies a lot more when I hear some 13-year-old punk behind me going, "I don't get it."
Ha ha, stupid punk. Go to college.

Eagle Eye.
Good, good movie.
Great for a date too.


War, Inc.---Not for Duff Fans.

Not totally unrealistic (unfortunately), War, Inc. was a very entertaining movie.

The plot is simple enough, easy to follow, and sometimes predictable.

The acting was great, esp John Cusack. He makes a surprisingly good action star.
Strange though. At one point Cusack pukes after watching Hillary Duff dance, and that almost turned me off to the extremely hot pop-music star.
But, Marisa Tomei's performance was hardly up to par with what I expected from the Oscar-winner. She's apparently a very loud kisser too.
However, Tomei is still extremely hot for an almost-44-year-old...

Dan Aykroyd and Joan Cusack were very funny. They were minor leads, and garnished the film with hilarity.
Towards the very beginning Aykroyd has a wire-meeting with John Cusack's character, Brand Hauser, while Aykroyd is taking a crap.
I can't wait to see Aykroyd in Ghostbusters 3...
(Google that!)

Overall, I liked this movie. Having followed politics, knowing something about the shituation in Iraq, and knowing how big businesses think, I found this movie very true-to-life, accurate, witty, and entertaining.

If you are a Hillary Duff fan you won't like this movie though, cause you won't get any of the jokes.
Although, I confess, for years I thought Hillary Duff was Hannah Montana... so what do I know?


Sunday, November 9, 2008

Changeling---Oscar for Jolie?

I haven't had a movie move me like Changeling did in quite some time.

The acting was fantastic. Angelina Jolie breaks her slutty type-cast streak by playing the frustrated, desperate mother, Christine Collins who is fighting to get her REAL son back.
The movie also combines all of the elements that went into this dramatic story, all of the related side stories.
The whole thing was fascinating to watch.
And the set crews and costume designers effectively created a legitimate-looking 1928 California.

The whole time I'm watching this I'm wondering how much of this really happened, and, if it is all true, I feel so bad for the real Christine Collins, and what she must have went through.
Afterwards I did some homework, and the writer of Changeling used authentic writings, records, and recordings for his whole script. He said that 95% of the script for this film came from old records like that. Very genuine.
That's why it felt so real.

Go ahead, watch the trailers, they won't spoil anything.

Changeling will make quite a show at the Academy Awards.


Friday, November 7, 2008

Underworld: Rise of the Lycans---Can't Wait...

Of Course this film hasn't come out yet.
I just wanna say how totally and completely happy I am that it's coming out at all.

Thank you Lakeshore International for answering all of my wishes and making this highly anticipated, fervently prayed-for, extremely looked-forward-to final trilogy installment.

The first one is one of my favorite films. I wondered what happened next, and how did the Lycans rise?
The second one disappointed, but showed me what kick-butt stuff happened next. It left me still wanting a prequel about how the Lycans rose...
This third one will be the prequel to end all prequels.

Rise of the Lycans seems to maintain the successful, fitting and dramatic directorial style of the first two.
It uses the same blues and dark shades that made the first two such feasts for the eyes.
And it's always difficult to make a prequel with stars who are 6 years older than they were when the first one came out.

It's also hard to resist the temptation to make the characters from the past have better technology than their descendants in the future...
Oh wait, no, that's stupid... who does THAT?

I wanna watch Quantum of Solace next week and then fast-forward to January 23rd so I can watch Underworld III.
And I want to go up to Rhona Mitra and tell her she's the new Robin Wright...
Random but true.


Skinwalkers---Werewolves Killin' Eachother

The credits for Skinwalkers aren't even half finished and I'm writing this.
I'm always skeptical of PG-13 horror movies, even after being scared witless by The Ring and The Grudge. I've always thought that a good horror movie should be rated R.
Skinwalkers wasn't supposed to be a horror movie though (despite the freaky cover art which was why I even gave this film a chance) as much as it is supposed to be a thriller.

What the hell is a "thriller"?
Lets ask the Bible, aka,
Thriller: a work of fiction or drama designed to hold the interest by the use of a high degree of intrigue, adventure, or suspense.
End of SIDENOTE-----

I don't have much bad to say about Skinwalkers. It was a very well-done, well-cast thriller.
The acting was good sometimes and bad at other times, given the potential in this movie for intensity and dramatics. The characters frequently seemed to underplay what was happening to them.
It was good to see Ninja Turtles' hero Casey Jones (Elias Koteas) back in action though. He's a fav of mine...I'm bias towards friends of the Turtles...

The film brilliantly featured hotties Rhona Mitra (Doomsday star and star of upcoming Underworld :Rise of the Lycans), Natassia Malthe (from such instant classics as Bloodrayne II: Deliverance, DOA:Dead or Alive, and Elektra), and Sarah Carter (Final Destination II, DOA, and TV's Shark).

I also enjoyed watching TV's Sons of Anarchy star Kim Coates (not hot, Kim is a dude) packin' heat.

The rest of the cast were blackhorse, to me at least.

Oh and did I mention Skinwalkers is about werewolves and that vamps have NOTHING to do with it?
That's good to know cause I'm a huge vamp fan and the Skinwalkers' cover grabbed my interest. Wouldn't want ya to get confused like me.
No vamps in this film.
---Sorry Twilight fans. You still gotta wait 'til Nov 21st like the rest of us.

I recommend this movie, I liked it, but I can see others maybe not liking it. Something was missing. I never found myself rooting for the good guys, and it's important to get viewers behind ya on that...
I was more curious to see how it ended than I was hoping that good would prevail.
'Course, I'm a heartless bastard so what would I know?

Werewolves killing each other.
'Nuf said right?


Felon---Dorff Beating Dudes Up

Stephen Dorff is Wade Porter; the honest family-man convicted of murdering a man who is robbing Porter's house.
I thought, at first, that this was a movie trying to push a message down my throat about how corrupt the penal system is; like some kind of adrenaline-powered Shawshank Redemption remake.
Not at all though. This movie is totally new and bold.
(And Shawshank was about a whole lot more than just our crap judicial system, of course)

Action-movie fans need to know; Felon needs to be on your watch-list.

If you saw this on the wall at Blockbuster it looks like some B-quality movie that managed to get a couple of big-time stars (Dorff, Val Kilmer, and Harold Perrineau from LOST) on the cover. But this movie is, in all reality, far from low-grade.
It's perfectly acted, the cinematography is simple and appropriate, and the story is full of violence.

Note: If you don't appreciate violence in films then don't see this movie.

Porter finds himself in deep crap before he even gets off the prison bus, and he keeps sinking deeper as he finds himself trapped in a corrupt "cock-fight" gambling ring the guards throw using the more dangerous prisoners.

Believable and far-fetched?
Heck no.

Felon keeps it real, keeps it bloody, and is totally enjoyable for dudes of all ages (17 and up...).

So if your in the rental store and see a B-quality-looking film called Felon; grab it and watch it.
It'll make you wanna punch your friends.


The Strangers---Scared Me

That's right, The Strangers scared the crap out of me.

I don't know what the actual crime scene that this movie was based on looked like, but I feel bad for the victims.

I was scared the whole way through.
If any visitors had tried to visit my home during this film they'da got a gun in the face AT LEAST:
"Is Tamara there?"
That's how it woulda gone.

If you are looking for a horror movie that will make your girlfriend rip the pocket off your shirt, stretch your collar, or just generally claw at you in terror, then The Strangers is it.

It scared ME.
I shouldn't have watched it alone...


PS-The acting was ok. Liv Tyler was good.

Revolver---Original, yet, Predictable

I'm a huge Jason Statham fan, can't lie, so I'll try not to be biased.

I just checked, and this movie was made in 2005... so why was it on Blockbuster's New Release wall?
Either way I watched it and liked it a lot.
It had plenty of action, surprises, and enough plot to confuse a...lesser individual.

The film did try to be artsy farsty a few times, and that's not the kind of thing Revolver fans would be particularly looking for. The artsy parts left me rolling my eyes going, "OK, I get it, there's depth, there's depth, now SOMEBODY SHOOT SOMEBODY!!!"

Ray Liotta was great too. His character was unbelievable though, only because he was so incompetent and, yet, manages to be rich, powerful, and feared...most of the time.
Maybe that ISN'T so unbelievable...

I'm proud of myself that I predicted the ending too. I won't give it away, but I will say that the ending left me with a feeling like I'd seen this ending before.


Red---Small but Steady

I kinda like these movies that aren't about the world ending, or some massive government conspiracy.
No, Red keeps things small and simple.
Red is about an old man, Avery Ludlow (Brian Cox from The Bourne Identity, Supremecy, The Ring, and X2) who's dog, Red, is murdered point-blank by a gutless teen with something to prove.
The film follows Ludlow as he tries to seek legal justice for the murder of his best friend.
The law, of course, lets him down.
That's enough spoilers.

The characters were all well cast.
Tom Sizemore (from Saving Private Ryan, Pearl Harbor, and Black Hawk Down) plays the gutless teens spineless, enabling father. He does a good job being a piece-of-crap person, esp since I've only seen him play more heroic types in war movies.
Noel Fisher's (Hostage) portrayal of "Danny MacCormack" was the best. He plays the cowardly, out-of-control teenage boy who shoots Ludlow's dog for sport. The entire movie I wanted to lash out and knock Noel's head in. I realize that's cause he did such a good job in the role.

It starts well, the story stays interesting throughout, and it ends differently than I'd expected.


Friday, October 31, 2008

Hancock---Totally Different

If you think Hancock is just a comedy about a drunk superhero then think again.
Hancock is different from every superhero movie I've ever seen.
If you've seen the previews then you only know a piece of what's coming in this comedy/action/drama.
I want to tell you the story but I won't.
You're welcome, and you'll enjoy it more this way.

I'll tell you that Hancock might very well be Will Smith's best performance ever.
He does it all in this film.
I've never seen an actor be so divers in a movie, making me laugh one minute, exploding with action the next, and wrapping it up with powerful emotion.
I haven't ever seen an actor apply Method-acting to a superhero so affectively.
Does that make sense?
I mean, where would Will Smith go to learn how a superhero should react emotionally?
How did he do his homework so well?
He broke my heart in several scenes. He was amazing.

Also in this film were Charlize Theron and Jason Bateman (together again after the final season of Arrested Development!). Charlize was hot as always, and Jason Bateman was excellent.

An interesting point about this movie was how so many of the scenes seemed partially ad-libbed. Some of it felt very unscripted and off-the-cuff. It was all executed well though, and added a natural feel to the movie that helped me fall into it.

My only complaints were regarding those things that are never explained. Movies don't have to explain themselves ENTIRELY, but some occurrences in the film were out of place to me. I still think there's a hole or two in the plot, which only matters because they're big, important holes, and the filmmakers seemed to make a lot of effort to keep things "real".

I'm left wondering to myself......."sequel?" I can't decide yea or nay.

A warning for families though:
This film contained way more swearing (lots of a-holes and humorous f-bomb) than I expected. It would have been so easy to do without the swearing, even though the writers tried to incorporate it into the plot.
It didn't bother me much, but I'm a 25-year-old, single dude... nothing bothers me.

But yeah, I've seen it 4 times now and it's great.


Get Smart--and SEE THIS MOVIE!

Now that I've seen this movie 3 or 4 times I think I know enough to write a blog about it.
I had low expectations the first time I saw it.
I highly recommend having lower expectations ANY time you see a movie cause it's always better that way.
Anywho, I laughed like crazy the whole way through.
The casting was dead-on almost all throughout. The man who played the President of the US (James Caan) was mediocre. Beyond his "eh" performance everyone was great.
This movie had:

Steve Carrell
Anne Hathaway
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson
Alan Arkin (histerical)
Terence Stamp (leader of "Chaos")
Terry Crews
David Koechner
Masi Oka (Hiro from the show "Heroes")
Dalip Singh (WWE's giant wrestler)
and brief appearances by

The plot was a little better than you'd expect from a slap-stick comedy, but it's also not important.
You need to know that this movie IS FUNNY and it's worth seeing.
Steve Carrell's best performance I've seen.
Anne Hathaway is HOT, and was in a scene similar to a popular scene in Entrapment... You know the Catherine Zeta Jones scene I'm talking about.


Monday, October 27, 2008

Miami Vice--I'm Beating a Dead Horse Probably

(I wrote the following review two years ago and posted it on facebook. This movie came out almost 3 years ago, but whatever, you need to know what to avoid).

And I quote (myself):

"So I'm wide awake, and wanted to enjoy the movie I rented. I should have known that the "unrated" version of Miami Vice was gonna suck.

7 out of 10 times they make an unrated version of a movie cause it did terrible in theaters and they think if they throw in some sex and f-bombs it'll boost dvd sales. It works every time, of course, but it doesn't mean the movie still doesn't suck.


The best is when the sex scenes weren't in the original cut at all, and so the characters who got it on 5 minutes ago are acting like they totally didn't just scronk it when they interact again in the next scene.


I actually stopped the movie an hour and 10 minutes into it. I couldn't take how dumb it was anymore. Cliche? Did somebody here order a helping of cliche with a twist of unoriginal cinematography? Anybody?
Colin, Jamie; your movie sucks.


Maybe I'm too much of a purest at heart, but I hate the whole unrated thing that's been going on with new movies.
It's just too obvious to me that Hollywood's marketing teams are practically writing the scripts for these sell-out unrated versions of flop movies. "Sex sells". If they can get the words "sexuality, nudity" or even "brief nudity" onto the mpaa rating box on the back of DVDs then it's missioned accomplished for the marketing teams.
Dudes know, unrated equals boobs. Boobs sell crap movies.
Why do you think horror movies have sex.

Take Bloodrayne for example: CRAP MOVIE!!! I've seen video games with WAY better stories. Kristanna Loken is SOOOO HOT though. I watched this on DVD before I'd gotten wise to the unrated-game Hollywood was playing. The movie sucked SOOOOO BAD, but there was a long, random sex scene where Loken goes topless. Probably saved DVD sales. The scene was obviously cut out of the original cause the characters who got it on don't even look at each other later. Course, that happens in real life too sometimes... eh?
It's to the point now where when I see the unrated version available for sale, I assume the movie sucked in theaters and will suck STILL.
But I'd be wrong sometimes.
I hear
The Hills Have Eyes scared the crap out of people (mission accomplished Dune Entertainment), and yet there's the unrated version available for sale... why? If people love the theatrical... I honestly don't see the logic.
Maybe, like I said, to boost DVD sales.
So I guess not ALL unrated movies suck--just MOST of them.
Either way, Miama Vice is on my top 4 worst movies of all time list. I should make a list.
Right now?
Miami Vice
Bloodrayne (boobs couldn't save it)
Dark Water

I've whined enough.


Doomsday--Wish I'd Been in It

Doomsday looked like it must have been the most fun movie in the world to be a part of.
It starts by setting a very bleak, pile-o-crap future where millions (maybe billions, not sure) are dead from some virus. Now it's time to go see if there's a cure to be found among the survivors.
Oh, it takes place in England so everyone has cool accents.
The sets and vehicles the characters interact with are freaking awesome. They must have spent a fortune building the tanks that the soldiers cruise around in.
Oh, and the main character (Rhona Mitra from Shooter, The Number 23, and Skinwalkers)is bangin'. Super hot. That's vital.
And the character, Sol (Craig Conway), who is leader of the cannibals... he's just such a believable psycho. He was born for that blood-thirsty role.
I don't want to give too much away, so I'll sum up my next thought in three words:
Yeah, you wanna see that now.
The action is big-time. The writers must not have been friends with ANY of the stars cause by the end I wondered if ANYONE was going to survive the numerous action scenes.
Very cool.
Every scene I watch I was going, "Man, that must have been fun to act in."
Esp. the
It's out on DVD so watch it with your sicko, blood-and-guts-loving friends NOW!


Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist--Bring a Date

I didn't make the mistake of going to see this one alone--I saw it on a date. PERFECT date movie. Her idea...
I don't like to write reviews on comedies, cause the ONLY issue you care about is, "Was it funny?"
Yes. I laughed my butt off. I cheered out loud at parts. I rocked with laughter at other parts.
It's also got that dramatic, lovey-dovey aspect that the more emotional gender would enjoy.
Will dudes suffer through it?
Heck no!
No suffering involved.
It stars Michael Cera from Arrested Development and Superbad! You'll love it!
And Kat Dennings (Norah) isn't a bad piece of eye-candy.
The two of them play off each other well.
Great, great movie.
Predictable in all the right places.
Make sure you bring a date.


The Eye--A Different Kind of Horror

I really enjoyed The Eye. I watched it in my basement with my bro-in-law and we both got scared by it. Him more than me... honest!
That's really what a horror-movie review is about right? Did it scare me?
Yeah, there was some scariness. My bro was more scared than me, and of course theres the mandatory shower scene with Jessica Alba (Something she should include in more movies) that was a nice intermission to the terror.
I did enjoy this movie, but it's really a horror movie for people who scare easy and don't want to pee their pants. For me, the plot and suspense far out-weighed the terror. I was hoping to freak out, jump out of my skin, and I only did that once or twice.
The plot was very cool, different in many ways. I liked following Alba around as she tried to get a handle on what was going on.
It was cool seeing Alessandro Nivola again too. I hadn't seen him in a movie since Jurassic Park III (SUCKED!) and Face/Off (AWESOME!!!). He started out in the typical horror movie role of the guy who thinks the victim is crazy and seeing things (There has to be one in every horror movie). By the end he kicked butt.
I really liked the ending of Eye too. It was different from other horror movies. That's all I'll say about that.
So yeah, good movie.
Something a group of friends could either enjoy, scream, or laugh at together.


PS--If they ever make a sequel it will suck. You hear that Lionsgate? NO SEQUEL.
Random but true.

Max Payne--Wahlberg Should Hold a Gun

Saw this on Oct 17, the day it came out. I was excited, but also prepared for a bit of a flop. M. Night Shyalaman told Mark Wahlberg, after finishing filming of The Happening, "you can never hold a gun again."
I entered the theater wondering if Shyamalan's "prophecy" would come true... After watching Max Payne, seeing Wahlberg blowing dudes away with such extreme prejudice and in such a "HOLY FREAKING CRAP!!!"-way, I see the mistake in Shyamalan's advice.
It was no prophecy.
Mila Kunis' character was different from roles I've seen her play. Though I confess, I never did see American Psycho II...
In Payne, I thought she was going to ruin it. Hot, hot, hot as she is, I thought she was too petite to hold a gun unless it was at a Cabela's convention. But she fit her role well, and didn't distract from the movie in any negative ways. She was almost too tough to fantasize about. ALMOST.
There were noticed flaws, however.
The preview shows Wahlberg jumping backward with a shotgun and firing behind him at bad guys, and I thought it would be cool in the movie, but the actual event in the movie seemed to take way too long, even with "bullet-time" in mind. It was too slowed down, drawn out, and wasn't creative enough to justify the cinematic attention it was given.
That was just one of the flaws.
The demons flying around are explained, but I kept expecting them to play some role in the plot, and their purpose in the "grand scheme of things" is never really revealed. It's like the screen-writers kept them in the plot cause they're cool, but didn't know what to do with a bunch of demons in a shoot-em-up super-cop movie.
Overall, despite the failed artistic attempts and the unexplained demons, I left the theater raving to my buddies. We all loved it, we all freaked out, and we all hail Wahlberg--who should always tote a gun.


Sunday, October 26, 2008

Pride and Glory--Farrell's Best

I entered this film with mediocre expectations, but spent half the movie on the edge of my seat almost falling off the front.
If you are a cop-movie fan, or if you liked the raw grit of films like Casino or Harsh Times, then you'd LOVE Pride and Glory.
This was Colin Farrell's best performance that I've seen, and I've seen six of his past movies including SWAT and Alexander. Farrell wasn't in a scene that didn't widen my eyes or whiten my knuckles.
Performances from Edward Norton (American History X, The Incredible Hulk, and The Illutionist), Jon Voight (National Treasure and Deliverance), and Noah Emmerich (Frequency, The Truman Show) were good, but couldn't match Farrell's character's strengths.
Not bad at all considering Farrell's "Worst Actor" nomination in the Razzies for his role in Alexander just four years ago...
The plot was a complicated one to follow, considering the story was shown from the perspectives of two brothers (Emmerich and Norton) and their bro-in-law (Farrell) who are all cops and all involved in the same murder investigation in different ways.
This film DID leave me questioning the title... a strange thing to question, but I like the title to fit. I can't suggest a better title, besides maybe "1013" or something generic like that.
Overall though, fantastic movie. Almost Dark Knight quality, very close. And that's sayin somethin.


Body of Lies--DiCaprio and Crowe's synnergy

I admit, after reading a negative review on Body of Lies, I went into the theater with mediocre expectations. The review stated that the mediocre plot was made bearable only because of DiCaprio's acting. I confess, I only saw it out of loyalty to DiCaprio--who's performances in The Departed and Gangs of New York absolutely blew me away.
All through the movie I wondered what would happen, where would the story take me next. DiCaprio's performance was Oscar-worthy, and Russel Crowe's sarcastic, bastardy attitude kept me rocking my seat laughing.
The two were brilliant together.
DiCaprio has completely established himself as an action star.
Crowe is just always great, and is dynamic as always.
Ridley Scott's directing was superb as well. He kept combining totally different viewpoints into very flowing, easy-to-follow cinematography. It was perfect.
The plot is a similar story. I loved it. It surprised me all through-out and (unlike other espionage movies) I did NOT leave the theater wondering what happened when and to who and why and who's the real bad guy.
Body of Lies also doesn't touch on the whole, "Why are we in Iraq?"-thing much, if at all. It ignores the bull-crap politics and delivers a realistic, gritty, rock-in-your-seat, entertaining action movie.
What a relief.
I loved it.