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.