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Review

If only the Star Wars prequels were even a tenth of how good this kinda, sorta, updated Star Wars flick.

I was way off on my prediction for this Guardians of the Galaxy film. I thought with the stream of Sci-Fi wannabes from sometimes acclaimed novels and a relatively unknown live cast, this was going to bomb and bomb hard. Unfortunately for me and fortunately for the movie, I couldn’t have been more off. (In my defense and demise, I predicted this 6 months prior to opening. Sheesh! That’s way too early to predict any box office number.)

I didn’t think the movie would necessarily suck, or would be barely watchable, but I’m just not into Sci-Fi and because of which, it took me 30 days to the day of release to finally see this. Poor choice #2 on my part. (Almost 4 months for The Matrix – and I wish I had seen that one sooner, as well.)

While not perfect, way too many predictable lines and twists and slightly longer than it needed to be, the movie worked extremely well overall. Though the highlights were the literal laugh-out-loud humor, killer soundtrack and very good and inventive effects, the best aspect for me were the fantastic and memorable characters.

How they worked on their own, their depth and the comradery between them was simply divine. Too often characters, and especially ego- driven actors portraying them, ruin what could be a fun adventure flick with depth. Everyone’s chemistry was spot-on and I couldn’t help but love everyone individually and definitely together. Heck, even The Avengers dragged too long on the conflicts within.

What was also nice about the bond of our heroes was the reasons of being together. Not a single weak part to everyone’s story line – everything worked splendidly as a whole. To have this many characters – five main and exclusive characters – all feeding off each other while maintaining their own direction isn’t easy and should be praised when it does occur.

I went into this movie with ZERO expectations. I neither really wanted to see it nor did I think it would be bad. What I got was one pleasant surprise after another. For example, the opening nearly had me in tears – and not from laughter.

The movie opens with our future hero and “Han Solo’s nephew,” Peter “Star Lord” Quill’s mother passing and that’s immediately followed by his space abduction and eventually 20+ years later. Now, a full blown Han Solo renegade, he’s trying to steal a sphere, Raiders of the Lost-like and the adventure begins with him being chased, him meeting the rest of the title characters and the rise of heroism.

To be honest, the story is not the newest or freshest out there, but it works beautifully here. Even the negative of occasionally predictable scenes, as mentioned above, was necessary for a movie like this to have. It’s enormously unique on its own, but needed to tone it back to be more accessible to the general audiences while giving homage to the greats like this before it.

The emotional scenes also worked, as in the beginning – that was tough! not to get upset then – and a couple more later. Also, the laughs were plentiful even with the ones absolutely not geared towards me. I appreciated that they spread out the humor so not to just please one audience type. Further, the sometimes ingenious ways of solving problems were fantastic as was the loyalty amongst our crew – something I love to see in movies like this. Yes, I know it’s more realistic to show more conflict than they did here, but I’m certainly not going into a movie like this and trying to find too much realism. And finally, I am HOOKED, as most people are on that dang good soundtrack.

I look forward to more follow-ups and cross-over’s. I am super glad my prediction didn’t come true and happy for a genuine blockbuster in one of the most lackluster box-office summers in many, MANY years.

* * *

Final thoughts: I might need to watch it again – ha, I’m definitely buying this on Blu when it arrives, and I might be wrong, but far too many people survived way too long in space and exposed. I kept saying “NO” out loud as if I were Grumpy Cat when I saw one fly through space with only a secured helmet on. His hair was flowing with the transition and his hands were ungloved, even. Again, I might be mistaken, but this and a few other minor anti-physic-issues I couldn’t get past.

Did this downgrade the movie in any way? Another “NO.” As much as I didn’t like to see such obvious mistakes, it’s still a space- adventure-comedy. Heck, even the very-fun Gravity had its share of issues, and that was supposed to be realistic.

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Review

This movie is terrible, and what is worse, is saying that they are going to make a franchise out of this. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014) has NO REASON TO EXIST, NONE WHATSOEVER!!! It’s badly enough that they want to make as movie after a semi-successful series, but it is downright insanity that drove Nick Movie Studio’s Michael Bay, and John whatever his name is who made the crappy sequel to Clash of the Titans, to acquire the movie franchise to dig it up from retirement, only to murder the franchise and then parade it’s body like a F%&*king Parade float.

But surprisingly enough their is some things, in this movie, which gives it higher than a 1/10, and that is the personality of the Turtles themselves, they can be funny, but then they can also have vague humor. Will Arnett is completely miscasted in this film, he sucks in it, he makes this movie worse. And Megan Fox (while having the look of the Character) still did a bad job, she just like her other films, has no emotions, and that is just terrible.

The Villain Shredder, is boring, and Eric Sachs is their for no reason, only to have William Fichner in the credits, but the thing that get’s me the most, the thing that pisses me the F^&k off is saying “we are going to make a franchise out of this” what the *Bleep* this movie made a horrible first impression, for a franchise, are you kidding me, me a big TMNT fan, had no fun watching this piece of S&%t movie at all.

The Foot Soldiers are Soldiers with Machine Guns, did they realize that the swords, cannot stop them, did these foot soldiers watch the original films, and think F&%k this, i don’t want to get beaten to a pulp, let’s use guns, because that is totally what people want in a ninja Turtles movie, foot soldiers with Machine Guns.

No I cannot justify this piece of S*it any longer the Final Score for this Crap fest is a …

2/10!!!!!!!!!! Terrible!!!!! If your a little kid, you might like the movie, if you grew up with the 90’s you will hate it!

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Review

The trailer to this film made it look decent, so I was hoping to enjoy it… But I really didn’t. This film just isn’t good. It has almost all flaws and very few positives to it.

To start off with, the story is an interesting concept, but it’s executed in a way that is extremely cliché. The story has your typical plot points that a lot of cheesy romance films have. The fight, the make up, etc. We really don’t see a lot of the in between dead and alive kind of stuff, and even that isn’t executed. It got so cliché that it started making me incredibly bored. I wanted to yell “STAY OR DON’T, JUST MAKE A DECISION!”. It really just doesn’t work.

What make this story worse is the acting. It can be pretty bad. Chloe Moretz just isn’t very good. I haven’t seen much of her work, but I just don’t see why she would be cast in a lead role. She is cute, but her acting just can’t hold a film together, especially a film with such an emotion driven plot. I didn’t feel for her in the least bit, which completely ruins the film. It was very tough to get through.

Another little detail that I couldn’t get over was the CGI head. I’m sure you’re asking, what does that mean? Let me explain. Chloe plays a character who plays the chello extremely well. I am assuming Chloe doesn’t know how to play it, because in scenes where we see her playing it, they obviously CGI her head onto the body of someone who knows how to play, and the issue is, it’s extremely obvious. Her head floats and bobs and looks so odd. What’s worse is that in shots where it’s from the side, you can tell it’s not even Chloe at all! They don’t attempt to CGI her head from the side, but just leave the different actress who you can tell from the side isn’t Chloe. It was so distracting and I couldn’t help but laugh at how bad that was.

Overall, if you wanna see this film, just watch the trailer and then find out whether she stays or not. The trailer gives you a better emotional journey than the film as a whole does.

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Review

I just got done watching this movie at the theater.

I actually REALLY enjoy the hand-held-horror flicks (”The Blair Witch Project”, “Cloverfield”, “Chernobyl Diaries”, “The Descent”, etc.) so as one would expect, I was fairly excited to see this film. In fact, the hand-held-horror genre are the only films I am willing to pay to go see in theater (to get the full effect). But I have to say, “As Above, So Below” was quite the letdown.

I never have high expectations for these films, for I feel their purpose lies in their cheap thrills and edgy ambiance (which needs to be experienced in a theater), but this movie just struggled to captivate me.

First off, and maybe this has nothing to do with the movie, but I did feel quite nauseous within the first five minutes or so, and I have NEVER had a problem with this in the past. Maybe I am just getting older, or maybe it was the redundant zooming/shakier-than-usual cinematography? Second: the characters. Just about every other film mentioned above had at least 1 or 2 sensible/believable characters… I was chuckling quite frequently at how ridiculously insensible the characters in this film are. Unreal. Where’s the emotion? They seemed more fascinated than terrified. I’m not buying it.

Last, while the plot was somewhat original (2 stars for originality), the characters’ indifferent attitudes combined with the mediocre plot points just made it boring. And while I am all for cheap thrills and pop-out scares, the real thrill of a horror flick is generated via its despair-ambiance; the psychological trauma induced by the eeriness and overwhelming sense of hopelessness and the characters’ vulnerabilities… absent in this film. (The 2009 movie “Triangle” offers a good example of this).

In conclusion, if the idea of venturing deep underground to explore the mysteries of an abyss intrigues you, I recommend watching “The Descent” instead. I feel it is a much more satiable film exploring a very similar idea.

Watch Let’s Be Cops Full Movie Online

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Review

The moment I saw that trailer for this I knew exactly what to expect. I am honestly mind blown by the “poor” reviews for this film and people calling it crude and unfunny and stupid. Yep! This film reeks of crude and stupid (I won’t say unfunny because I laughed.) I knew immediately this was going to be a brain dead stoner comedy and I actually expected I would hate it. I knew it would be filled with middle aged guys acting like teenagers, sex jokes, drug use and toilet humour and I’m not sure how you could expect anything more. Now all that being said the film actually has a decent plot and some action and its sort of cute with a little bit of heart and decent enough characters to make it entertaining. It isn’t amazing at all but far better than I thought it would or better than it has any right to be. It has a buddy cop vibe, 48 Hours/Another 48 Hours, Beverly Hills Cop, Lethal Weapon-ish….and although not anywhere near as good as any of those films, it is decent for a modern day spin where brain dead comedy usually goes a long ways. The movie going public lacks a certain amount of brain cells and comedies tend to be dumbed down to appease them (yah I said it.) If you can turn your brain off and just prepare to be goofy then you’ll have fun.

I like Jake Johnson a lot from New Girl and from his role in Safety Not Guaranteed (an amazing indie comedy!) This is sort of his leap to mainstream big screen and he does well. He always sort of plays the same type of role but his character is fun and even has a little bit of depth and he definitely has charisma enough to carry the film. I do think he will find his break out role if this isn’t it. Damon Wayans Jr. does what the Wayans brothers know best…silly comedy. Wayans is decent and has solid chemistry with Johnson (an integral part to a buddy film) and he has some genuinely funny moments and lines. I don’t think he’s quite as good as Johnson but the two of them together are solid. Rob Riggle is actually fantastic in a small but important supporting role as a real cop that they inadvertently end up working with. Riggle is actually more the straight guy to Johnson and Wayan’s comedy and he’s great at it. He was probably one of my favourite performances and worth seeing! One big thing that Let’s Be Cops did right was to give this action/comedy film a really good villain. I love a good villain in any film and they really nailed this. He is sort of stereotypical and monstrous but it works on two different levels. James D’Arcy and Andy Garcia both have terrific roles. Honestly, they really took this up a notch by being completely evil and adding so much to the story. Much like Lethal Weapon who flawlessly perfected action-comedy so many years ago, they gave Let’s Be Cops near perfect villains to give the story some edge. Nina Dobrev who I’ve never been a huge fan of is okay as the lead girl and Wayan’s love interest. She’s not a great actress and they sexualize her too much to have any character depth. When she’s trying to be serious, it seems campy and she doesn’t fit the cast at all.

I assumed after seeing the film that whomever directed it probably didn’t have a lot of experience. As I said before I enjoyed the movie far more than what I expected to but I also saw a lot of flaws in its silly and stupidness and overuse of drugs and sex rather than focusing on the fun angle and more on the action and plot. Director and co-writer Luke Greenfield has been around quite awhile and did direct pseudo-cult classic “The Girl Next Door” but I still think he could have done more to make this work better. Its good but because of the similarities from other films that I have mentioned previously I think it could have been great. Or maybe because it was too similar to things that were done so long ago, it could have never found new ground to tread on. Regardless, you can enjoy this and if you went in thinking you were about to see some masterpiece of cinema then you only have yourself to blame. Even if you saw all the funny parts in the trailer, you should have known exactly what to expect. The trailer did show most of the gags but the action and decent plot and actual character development in some cases are surprising enough to entertain you. I liked it…so sue me. 7.5/10

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Review

When I first viewed the trailer for “The November Man”, I thought it looked average and kind of like a straight to DVD movie. So my girlfriend and I were looking for a movie to watch and I suggested this and went in with low/average expectations. I must say, I was surprised by the movie and how entertaining and thrilling it was.

First things first, Pierce Brosnan proves he still has that charisma and flair which most people seen when he played James Bond, he brings that same level of personality to the role and is just pure bad ass and cool as “The November Man”. I felt the actors all did a wonderful job from Luke Bracey as the cocky, young, and easy to hate protégé to the smoking hot Olga Kurylenko. The story may seem predictable and simple, but is still intriguing,thrilling and provides for some edge of the seat excitement. The action comes fast, bloody and unexpectedly. The scenes are shot with crisp and it will invigorate your adrenaline rush for all the action junkies out there. Like many of the reviews have pointed out, the story takes some twists and turns which may leave the viewer confused. It still provides an above average, edge of your seat, action thriller.

Overall, a decent popcorn flick that will surely entertain. It has a little bit of everything. Action, suspense, thrills, drama, humor and is surprisingly quite entertaining. It will surely make you gasp or jump at least once! Don’t listen to Rotten Tomatoes, go watch and judge for yourself.

6.5/10

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Review

This is my first time ever reviewing a sports movie. Along with that comes the fact that I do not watch very many sports movies… Anyone who is reading this be warned that I understand that the true story was life changing and a huge deal in football history and the coach was one of the greatest of all time. I get that, but I will be directing the negative review towards the film not any of the people that participated in the real life events. So here we go. The acting was not that good. The whole movie was at best some B-string actors that were doing such a terrible jobs of holding focus that it left me wondering how the kid who was trying to get the scoring record (who also played Cato in the Hunger Games) was able to use the same emotion in this movie as The hunger Games. Then the coach was played by the guy from Person of Interest and he was unwilling to show much emotion at all. Since the story was based on real life events I will let the writers have a free pass and not critique them. A major problem I noticed was the jumping back and forth between scenes. It is very difficult to get the timing just right. Too long and you get bored of seeing the same thing, too short and you cannot develop the connection with the characters that is needed to fully enjoy the movie. In this case the scenes were too short. With as many characters as there were I was unable to learn anyones name, let alone any reason to support them over another team in the movie. This mistake dulled the entire movie. The heart crushing scenes were dimmed to a feeling of sadness for the family and the triumphs were reduced to a simple “congratulations you won”. There was not really any of the edge of your chair excitement you look for in a sports movie and there was not great acting or humor to make up for it. The lessons the movie taught you were nothing new either, so it wasn’t like you walked out of there having at least gained some great wisdom to apply to your own life. Definitely no Seal of Approval.

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Review

Everyone is judging this movie based on its accuracy to the book, which is understandable. I re-read the book 2 days ago, so it would be fresh in my head before viewing the movie for the first time. I absolutely love the book, and I had heard varying opinions about the movie (mostly negative), but I wanted to watch it with an open mind and present my own opinion. I must say: this movie is simply amazing. Firstly, the acting is top-notch: Meryl Streep and Jeff Bridges were perfect of course, but Brenton Thwaites and Odeya Rush also brought depth to their characters. I loved seeing Taylor Swift make an appearance in the film, and she gave life to a character who was only mentioned in the book. Katie Holmes and Alexander Skarsgård showed flawless acting in their supporting roles as well. The movie excelled in more than just its acting. There were so many powerful “chilling” moments, particularly with the portrayal of the memories. The contrast of the sensory-rich memories of the past with the colorless and boring Utopian community is what brought real depth to the film. My favorite aspect was the slow transition from black-and-white to vivid colors. My only true complaint about the movie is that it was too short. I didn’t want it to end. As far as staying true to the book, there were minor changes, such as the ages of the characters and the career assignments, but these made sense. People must understand that when a book is adapted on screen, there are certain things that must change for viewing continuity purposes. I will say that, as always, the characterization was better in the book, and I was able to form a connection with the characters quicker with a written description. The movie jumped right into the plot, which was good for the pacing of the story, but this meant it took longer to really understand the characters. Having already read the book, this was not a problem for me. The overall themes and concepts (such as sameness, colors, emotion, and love), were portrayed ingeniously throughout the movie. As much as I love the amazing use of imagery in the book, being able to actually visualize the transition from a dull community to a vivid, colorful world was breathtaking. Also, without giving spoilers, the movie gives explanations to concepts in the book, especially with the “memory boundary” that separates the society from Elsewhere. The movie doesn’t stray from the book, it just provides more clarity. Finally, I loved the ending of the movie. It gives more closure, and was even more satisfying than the book was. My overall conclusion is that this movie serves as an excellent counterpart to the book. The detailed characterization of the book and the sensory stimulating scenes in the film complement each other nicely to make one cohesive, stunning, and powerful story.

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Review

This is, first and foremost, a really enjoyable film – the prototype for a feel-good comedy, you could say. A certain predictability comes included with such a premise – yeah, it’s pretty formulaic, and no, there are no surprises – so “only” 8/10. On the other hand, such movies live or die with the performances and timing, and everything is in perfect working condition here. Helen Mirren as the iron lady – but with a golden heart, of course, Om Puri as the equally iron patriarch of the newly-arrived culinary competition, Manish Dayal as the self-confident hero and the ridiculously pretty Charlotte LeBon as his competition/love-interest – excellent cast and performances.

Plus there’s nice – very low-key – music, and even some good cinematography – not that typical for your off-the-mill feel-good comedy, but look for that dancing and sweeping camera in the minute-long take during the renovation works in the newly bought restaurant – that’s a shot Cuaron could be proud of. Overall, highly recommended if you can sit through a movie with not a single gunshot (there’s some explosions and fire, at least).

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Review

The first two ‘Expendables’ movies followed pretty much the same format, with a big cast (literally) and a shed-load of explosions filling in for the lack of story line, character development and just about anything else that constitutes a “good film”. This ultimately left the first and second picture falling into the “so bad it’s not good but we love it anyway” category. The same could be said for sequel no. 2, just with the “love it anyway” part left out.

The first was a guilty pleasure because it was fun, the second was a guilty pleasure because we wanted more fun and didn’t really care if the filmmakers couldn’t be arsed with new material, but by the time came for Sly and the gang’s third outing, we’re too exhausted from the last one to care anymore.

What plot there is proves so totally irrelevant that i’m not going to bother boring everyone. While I could go into detail on the numerous flaws this is, as we all know, a film that doesn’t take itself too seriously and to enjoy it you simply have to take it at surface level for what it is. The problem however is that you can have too much of a good thing, so you can definitely have too much of a bad thing; even viewers new to the franchise will notice that the film is terribly dragged out.

An array of fresh faces are on-hand to deliver brand new corny one- liners (well, not entirely brand new….GET TO THE CHOPPER!), the only factor that really makes this tired second-sequel worth a watch; Wesley Snipes fits right in as the imprisoned hard-man, Antonio Banderas offers comic relief, but it’s Mel Gibson’s impressive turn as the most memorable bad guy yet that keeps this sinking ship afloat.

To say that you have to be in the right mood to enjoy watching such anarchy (in every sense of the word) would be an understatement; more of the same here, however if you enjoyed the first two then be sure to check it out.

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Review

The Transformers film franchise, which started in 2007, was always highly criticized for its chaotic, messy plot, over-the-top bad acting, the tasteless, offensive and crude humour, cheesy and cliché ridden dialogues, features blatant product placement for many companies and overly long screen time for every instalment. But, why people are still flocking to cinemas to watch them? It is simply because Michael Bay always managed to leave the audience wowed each time with realistic and life-like CGI robots, big action sequences with explosions, beautiful scenery, stylish luxury sports cars and sexy hot stars.

The film takes place 5 years after the events of Dark of the Moon, start fresh by telling a new story with the Yaegers replacing the Witwickys, which got caught up in the battle between man and machine when Cade bought a rundown trailer truck, unaware that it’s actually Optimus Prime himself. This puts him and his family right in the path of ruthless corrupted CIA agents, who seeks to destroy all Transformers and eliminate anyone who’s involved with them. Many of the Autobots or Decepticons who remained on Earth are either hunted down and killed or forced into hiding.

The film takes a serious approach, darker tone compared with the previous trilogy. The story centers around the Yeagers’ father-daughter relationship, which is slightly refreshing and better compared with the unrealistic relationships between Witwicky and his two exceptionally hot girlfriends. For this film, Michael Bay finally managed to clear up the film’s visuals with better action choreography. The slow-motion action sequences actually help the audience to follow what is happening on screen and who’s fighting who. This makes the action sequences more enjoyable for a wider audience. Not to mention, Bay also reduces and removes many of the stupid, offensive, racist jokes that the previous trilogy had.

Another noticeable improvement which never been done in the previous films: developing distinctive personalities for the robot characters by giving them more screen time to interact with each other. This time, Bumblebee shares his screen time with the newly-introduced Autobots (Hound, Drift and Crosshairs) for the audience to really get to know them, instead of big hunks of metal clanging against each other. The film has lesser military combats and focusing more on the robot action. There are more interesting character dynamics between them than before, especially Optimus. Optimus is more compelling than previous films, showing his anger and disappointment towards the humans for their betrayal. He is losing faith in humanity and questions his ideals.

As usual, the visual effects by ILM are absolutely stunning and groundbreaking. The CGI effects actually manage to bring these non- existent mechanical beings to life. The details of the Autobot transformation remains impressive and convincingly realistic. The film still managed to put me in awe at how lifelike these robots are on screen, despite the fact that it’s 7 years after the first Transformers film. It is truly a sight to behold when Optimus rides the fire- breathing Grimlock to war after he swiftly convinces the Dinobot leader to assist his cause. Once again, ILM has proved that they are the best in the visual effects industry.

Mark Wahlberg has proved himself that he’s a better actor and a better lead than Shia LaBeouf. Mark actually involves himself in the action sequences, never overacts, runs and screams “Optimus!!” or “Bee!!” like Shia in the previous trilogy. Stanley Tucci is also better as the tech corp KSI founder Joshua Joyce compared with the annoying stupid Agent Simmons (John Turturro) or Leo Spitz (Ramón Rodríguez) in past films. Kelsey Grammar is perfectly cast as the villainous CIA black-ops head, Attinger as well. Unfortunately, Nicola Peltz’s character as Cade’s daughter and Jack Reynor’s character as her boyfriend falls flat though, with Reynor giving the worst performance among the cast.

Despite the numerous improvements, the film still suffers from numerous plot logic issues, unnecessary cheesy dialogues and scenes, overdone jokes that failed miserably and lots of annoying blatant product placement advertisements to reduce the film’s budget. The film also feels overly long with its 157 minutes of running time (excluding film credits). Dinobots are the main attraction for this film, but sadly there’s not a lot of screen time for them at all. It would be interesting to see more of them in robot mode, speaking and interact with other characters in the film. The film also ends abruptly with many questions left unanswered in the end, which opens for another sequel again.

Overall, this is not a great film by any means, so do not expect deep, meaningful story lines which this film does not have. However, this one actually have its heart at the right place this time compared with the previous two sequels. Age of Extinction is the film that Transformers should have been a long time ago. In my opinion, it’s the best Transformers film so far. A blockbuster entertainment.

Rating:7/10

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Review

In 2012, Steve Harvey had his best selling book, Think Like a Man adapted to the big screen. Even with it not being proclaimed as “the greatest comedy of the year” and having the most recognizable cast, its portrayal of psychological warfare between genders and their personalities were displayed in an accurate manner and still performed well as result. The intertwining connections between each relationship led to a story with solid drama and comedy, along with tight editing that didn’t allow the audience to linger too much on one particular subplot. Thankfully, the majority of these traits are kept in tact, although there are some issues that the first movie did not suffer from.

Starting where the first movie left off, Michael (the mama’s boy) from the dude crew decides that he and Candice should get married in Las Vegas. So to make sure everything goes according to plan, he asks Cedric (Kevin Hart) to take care of the event. Once everyone meets up at Las Vegas, the genders break off in their separate groups again decide how they’re going to enjoy their Bachelor(ette) party. However, like most stories, nothing goes according to plan. Michael’s mom (yes she tags along) begins meddling with both parties, mainly the females. But even with this, Cedric begins to have trouble convincing his male buds that they need to live it up since it’ll be a while before they can be a wild and free crew again. Of course Michael, being the one to refuse going to strip clubs and such. Thus the title, “Think Like a Man Too”. Get it? You know, like the guys now have to think more like men should? Yeah it’s a vague play on the title but I’m pretty sure that was what the concept the producers were going for.

Quite honestly, I’m surprised they didn’t just label it as “Think Like a Man 2″. How do you extend a story beyond its source material anyway? The whole idea behind the first movie was that it flipped the relationship role playing on its head. Now, it’s more like a gimmick; but I digress. Having the guys try do more guy activities is a different thing so kudos to director Tim Story for going that route. The problem however, is that the writing doesn’t stick to this particular plot line and develop it with its established characters. Instead, the execution starts off like its predecessor with initial conflicts, abruptly leaves them to loosely weave them in for the meat of the story and then finally crams them in at last minute so that there’s a sense of closure. This is a bit disappointing considering how effective the first film was when it was defining its characters with such purpose.

What takes control over these character arc subplots are the improvised bachelor(ette) parties. That and Kevin Hart hogged the camera more this time round. The weird thing is, even with more screen time, Hart’s character is lesser defined than before from the last movie. One of his particular subplots were not even finished. Hey Mr. Keith Merryman and David A. Newman, your writing’s getting a little sloppy. In exchange for the important developmental arcs that involve romance AND comedy, the party scenes are used only for comedic purposes. Shockingly, even with the more importantly dramatic scenes being rather absent, the comedy still is effective throughout the movie. Kevin Hart again steals the show, but there are also times where various crewmembers get into some strange and funny situations. Some of which, I’m not sure anyone would be able to see from too far away.

The music, once again composed by Christopher Lennertz made a decent score. Although I’m sure it’ll never be released to the public, the background music was still easygoing – no main title of course. Peter S. Elliot’s editing is still tight and keeps the story going which is good. Christopher Duskin’s cinematography is also well shot for its location. Even though many scenes take place inside a building (and some out), the view always looks grandiose and has an upper class feel. Of course, along with the main cast, who perform well, audiences will get to see a slew of other celebrities. Dennis Haysbert, better known as the “Allstate guy” plays a minor role. Who would’ve thought. Also Adam Brody and David Walton have minor roles too, they should be tolerable although I hope they don’t turn out being apart of the main cast. There’s enough characters already. All in all, it’s a decent sequel, but more character development would’ve been appreciated.

The writing minimizes a lot of the character development and drama in exchange for humor. Although it works, the product of the title doesn’t match its premise. Not that anyone will complain too much. It’s still a fun ride.

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Review

From director Clint Eastwood, comes the cinematic adaption of the Broadway musical, Jersey Boys. The story is based on the real lives of the rock and roll hall of famers, The Four Seasons. The film is about the band’s rise to fame and the speed bumps that they face along the way. With a talented director and some of the cast from the actual Broadway musical who know the material better than anyone else, this had the potential to be a great musical. The music is very catchy and wonderfully performed, also the era in which it is set is well realized. While the musical aspect is great, the rest of the movie falls apart due to a poorly structured and executed storytelling.

Full Review:

Despite not knowing much about The Four Seasons, I usually quite enjoy life stories of famous past artists and their struggles along the way. So considering this was a popular and successful musical, being directed by a legend in Hollywood, Clint Eastwood, I was quite intrigued. In the beginning I saw some promise, but as the movie went on I felt my interest wane.

This is after all a musical, so the one thing that has to be great is the music, and thankfully it is. As I mentioned the songs are indeed catchy. I never listened to The Four Seasons, and I don’t carry that genre of music on my phone to listen to on the road. And yet I really enjoyed all the songs to the point I want to check out more of the band’s discography. So the credit goes to the actors for their amazing voices (and of course The Four Seasons for actually making the songs originally). On the other hand the acting style of the cast felt out of place. Some of them come directly from Broadway, and that is clearly seen in their performance, because everything is very exaggerated. That style is perfect and very much needed for on-stage, but on-screen the acting needs to be more subtle. So there are points where it feels like the cast is over-acting, which can get distracting.

The main problem with the movie is the structure of the story. There are events and situations that occur very abruptly. The reason for this is because there is no coherence in the time-line of the movie. You don’t know whether 5 months or 5 years have passed between scenes, there are no visual cues. So for example, there might be some argument that may break out as a result of tension building up over 10 years. But because you don’t see that build up at all, much less know that 10 years passed in just 3 scenes, the eventual fight breaking out feels like it came out of nowhere. This completely took me out of the movie several times because to me the reactions of the characters made no sense without the much needed proper context. There are times where a character breaks the fourth wall and speaks directly to the audience. This would’ve been useful for filling in those gaps, but instead is used to state some obvious things that are happening or about to happen.

In the end, I can’t say that I enjoyed the movie. The unorganized flow of the story can get the motives of the characters confusing. This completely removes any emotional effect of some critical scenes. As a result you have little care for what’s going on. Ultimately this is a slow and boring movie with some good music. I would only recommend this to fans of The Four Seasons, with caution though. At least Jersey Boys got me exposed to some good oldies music **off to Spotify**.

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Review

What I liked about 22 Jump Street was that it was confident. The writers knew it was the same movie, and they address it as often as possible. So yes, it’s the same movie, don’t get all critique about it. But, the jokes are so much better, and they don’t rely on dick jokes as much as they did in the first one. There’s not a lot of build up to the gags also, what happens, happens, and that’s awesome!

The chemistry between Jonah and Channing is brilliant. They bounce off each other perfectly and I just can’t picture anyone else playing the dynamic duo. Ice Cube, who wasn’t in much of the first film, has a lot more screen time here. And his scenes are mainly filled with absolute hilarity! There’s one scene in the middle of the movie that involves him, will make you laugh so hard you might tear up a bit.

The action sequences were well done, a whole lot more exciting than the first movie, the scale was bigger and the locations were better. It’s great movie with lots of laughs and a couple of hearty moments.

I would say this is the funniest movie of the year so far and the funniest R movie this year (I didn’t enjoy Bad Neighbors as much as 22 Jump Street).

8.4/10

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Review

Just watched it today and the anticipation from the last couple of months, weeks, days were all so worth it. The movie will let you bring out all emotions, even those you have not even experienced yet, whatever it is.

I am very much happy I’ve seen this on it’s first showing date and with my siblings. The message about caring and protecting your family and the ones you love and the ones who need it most will hit you right in the heart. The comic reliefs were intelligently placed, especially those that are happening in the background while another scene is being played. TIP: Watch out also for those dragon antics when the humans are interacting. You’ll notice this in the first few scenes where everything in the frame is real busy. You won’t even feel it but you’ll be able to just magically see these until the last part of the movie. Don’t hesitate to point at the dragons. Lol, in the theatre where we watched this, everyone’s seen doing this at least once. Don’t worry, they won’t get annoyed :)

It’s just sad that there was a death in the movie, I didn’t see this coming. Almost everyone, sniffed and brought out tissues in this scene. It was simple, yet there were a lot of emotions that will make you feel sad. One – when you try to shoo a friend, blame a friend, lose a family, and then realize you lost a friend at what you just did.

One very outstanding sequence was the Alpha at Berk. Boy the Night Fury really lived up to his status. The blue luminescence of Toothless was so emotionally uplifting, better than the rendition of the blue atomic breath of Godzilla. Add to that the narration in the background- “He’s protecting Hiccup, He’s protecting the dragons, he’s challenging the Alpha.” (something like that, we were almost at the edge of our seats with this one). Prior to that, we thought there was another death, but lo, a super saiyan type of change happened to Toothless. The battle scene was like classic David and Goliath, but was beautifully interpreted as their own.

Eret (Kit Harrington) was entertaining here. His character was also very beautifully built right from his first appearance. ROFL really on Ruffnut’s interest in him.

Overall, just watch it. The film doesn’t need gimmicky press releases like from Godzilla or X men or any previous movie shown this year. (The prankster in America F’s dress not included.) This is great quality.

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Review

For some reason, during the marketing of ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ this film seemed to have a lot of scepticism surrounding it, but I was excited for this movie from the moment I first heard about it. You know why? Because I really like Tom Cruise. I couldn’t care less about his personal beliefs; he’s a good actor so I can separate who he is from the roles he plays. Unfortunately, there are some people who can’t do that and will refuse to see this movie just because of Tom Cruise. Those people don’t know what they’re missing out on, because ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ is one of the best original sci-fi movies I have ever seen.

It’s abundantly clear that Tom Cruise is passionate about sci-fi movies, and he definitely gives some great performances in them. Last year we saw him in ‘Oblivion’, and now we have him playing Major William Cage, a solider fighting in a war against aliens. Cage soon realises that he’s stuck in a time loop of his last day in battle, and whenever he dies he wakes up at the beginning of the day again. This immediately draws comparisons to ‘Groundhog Day’, but there are also several other movies that ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ seems to take inspiration from, with ‘Aliens’ being one that felt like a huge influence. This film even has Pvt. Hudson himself, Bill Paxton, who gives a very entertaining performance as Master Sergeant Farell. Another reason I was excited for this movie is because of Emily Blunt, and she did not disappoint. I’m always happy to see strong female characters in film, so it’s great to see that Emily Blunt has her fair share of badass moments in this movie.

Even though ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ obviously draws inspiration from many other movies, it never feels like a rip-off. Although its highly generic title may suggest otherwise, ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ is actually a very original movie. It’s incredibly unpredictable, and unlike other movies within the genre I wasn’t picking out plot holes as I was watching. Even though a lot of the movie involves the story going back on itself and repeating events, it never feels boring and is constantly engaging.

Doug Liman gives excellent direction, creating a world that feels alive and interesting. The action scenes are especially well directed, they don’t rely on shaky cam and the mech-like suits that characters wear create interesting new dynamics in the battlefield and they’re a lot of fun to watch. The VFX are stunning as well, there were no moments where there was any noticeable bad CGI.

This year had already been a great year for big summer blockbusters, but ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ just supports that statement even further. It’s an incredibly memorable sci-fi experience that I would strongly recommend.

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Review

The movie was awesome, from visual effects to the plot of the the story. Well, if you watched Disney’s frozen then maybe you will have an idea, that its maleficent who will be the one to kiss aurora. however the movie was outstanding. Its nice how Disney transforms a into a darker one. The movie was not pure fairytale, or shall i say, a doll that turned into an action figure. Hope that Disney makes more movies like this one. One can see the Disney was able to transform a villain into a hero. I highly recommend the to movie to little kids to adults to male to female. Other outstanding movie from Disney. Well this movie, you would not blink to miss a single action from the movie. Its great how maleficent retrieve her wings from the altar. My words are not enough to describe the movie, better watch it yourself. But like i said the movie was pretty awesome.

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Review

Sound the distress signal! No pile is safe!

My advice to the tissues out there : slip from the top pocket, whisk yourself into the aisle, and cloak yourself behind a tossed popcorn bucket. The alternative? Slime – and lots of it. From the eyes to the nose to the wet debris of the cheeks… it will come, and there’ll be nowhere to hide!

“The Fault in Our Stars” will single-handedly spike the Kleenex death toll.

Based on the similarly eye-flooding book of the same name, “Stars” is a very sweet but sad teen romance that educates and enriches as much it entertains. Unlike most other films that carry the ‘youngsters in love’ tag, it’s set in our world – as opposed to that bl-inky-eyed, butterfly- buzzing haven beyond the screen where Michael Schoeffling and Molly Ringwald come together at a kitchen table for a 16th birthday kiss, and Freddie Prinze Jr manages to convince Rachel Leigh-Cook he’s more than the weight of his jock jacket. This ‘anti’ teen-romance movie is grounded, devoid of fluff, does away with a ‘happily ever after’ ending, and mostly, skips on the OMD. And the pragmatism is what transports “The Fault in Our Stars” to a whole next galaxy, far beyond the juvenile romances of cinema yesteryear.

As our lead character says at the beginning of the film, “I believe we have a choice in this world about how to tell sad stories. On the one hand, you can sugarcoat it. Nothing is too messed up that can’t be fixed with a Peter Gabriel Song. I like that version as much as the next girl does. It’s just not the truth.”

You’ve had plenty of fruit salad, now it’s time to dig into the chicken breast – it’s good for you.

Hazel (Shailene Woodley) describes herself as a ticking time bomb – but Cancer will do that. She seems to be just waiting around for the boom. And fair enough. Though not big on socializing, her mother’s insistence leads her to a support group, there she immediately catches the eye of courteous Gus (Ansel Elgort), who lost a leg to the disease. He’s only there supporting a friend. Hazel and Gus begin to grow closer – thanks to a mutual love of movies, music and literature – and things get serious just as Hazel’s health takes a turn for the worse.

“I am in love with you Hazel Grace”, responds Gus. “And I know that love is just a shout into the void and that oblivion is inevitable…and I am in love with you. All of your efforts to keep me away from you are going to fail.”

A secondary subplot strings the main thread together. Hazel’s found comfort in a book about a young girl, also with Cancer, who feels exactly the same about the disease as she does. The book leaves her hanging though – it doesn’t give her the answers she’s looking for, so she writes to the author who invites her to meet in Amsterdam. With the assistance of her ever-loving beau Gus, Hazel’s able to convince her doctors that she should be allowed to take the trip and so sets off – with boyfriend and mother (Laura Dern) in tow – to Amsterdam to get the answers she so desires. The trip is a memorable one for a whole different set of reasons.

It’s the realism of “Stars” that sees it effortlessly make out with the lump in your throat. From the credible and amazing performances of its two leads (Shailene Woodley has emerged as one of today’s best young actresses – here, she embodies true leading-lady potential; Ansel Elgort is as equally as good, serving up a wide-ranging, eye-catching and likable performance) to the realistic but heartbreaking story being told (you know walking in, there’s not going to be a happy ending for anyone here), there’s nothing inauthentic about the film. I pinched the reel – and its reflex suggested it was the real deal. True. Not a false beat in director Josh Boone’s orchestra.

In its depiction of terminal illness, Boone’s adaptation doesn’t attempt to evoke sympathy from the audience, nor does it ask you to pity the lives the leads have been granted. The film almost offers a positive spin – not unlike Gus does every few minutes in the movie – on cancer, reminding audiences that until you’ve breathed your last breath, you’re still alive and should embrace that. Inspiring. It also reminds that even a short but well-lived life is far from a waste — one can search forever for that special thing that makes their life complete or, like Hazel and Gus, they can find it in just a few months.

“You gave me a forever within the numbered days, and I can’t tell you how they cry out for a little infinity.”

“The Fault in Our Stars” is a movie that will ultimately still stir sniffles and flip smiles (particularly knowing how it’s going to turn out for the central characters), but it might also slap a few of the living dead out there into a new beginning, where they’ll start to make the most of their being.

Everyone will get something out of this – but especially those who’ve been working themselves over for months to years on end because of something that was out of their hands. Find happiness where you can, push on even when you think you can’t, and keep the tragic losses locked behind the padlock guarding your heart – after all, they’re yours. “I will not tell you our love story, because—like all real love stories— it will die with us, as it should.” Amen.

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Review

If Seth McFarlane created this film just for the opportunity to snog Charlize Theron then well played sir, well played. Unfortunately one mans opportunity to kiss a beautiful movie star is another mans two hours of average entertainment.

As a longtime fan of Family Guy I went into the cinema armed with popcorn, M&M’s and a drink with pretty high expectations. The popcorn was salty, the M&M’s were sweet and my drink wasn’t flat but sadly I can’t say the same for A Millions Ways to Die in the West. It began poorly and only just rose above that standard on a couple of occasions until the final credits.

To be fair, the storyline wasn’t too bad but Seth and his writers spent a quarter of the film introducing the main protagonists before getting on with the narrative. Charlize Therons character introduction was almost an after thought and her friendship with Seth went from introduction to firm friends in 5 minutes. The writing comes across as convenient, lazy and disjointed.

As an actor McFarlane tries hard and is at his best when his emotions are extreme. Anger or depression are his best moments but in between he appears unsure of himself. Theron and Neeson are clearly having fun in their roles with the Northern Irishman thoroughly enjoying himself as the villain of the piece. Sarah Silver is excellent as always but Giovanni Ribisi could not have appeared more disinterested as her fiancé. He all but checked his watch in every scene and appeared to want to be anywhere else but in this film. The same could be said of Amanda Seyfried and Neil Patrick Harris who practically phoned in their performances.

I’m not saying the movie was unfunny because there were a couple of laugh out loud moments but over two hours they were few and far between. Perhaps the film could have been reduced to 30 minutes….and produced as a cartoon…….and Seth could have still kissed Charlize if he wanted.

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Review

After seeing this movie I tried to compare it to others I had seen, as I often do. I usually find most of the ones I watch to finish somewhere below the traditional greats: X2, The Dark Knight, Spider-Man 2, Avengers, Superman…until now. I’ll have to see it a few more times before the novelty wears off but that may have been the best superhero film I have ever seen. And I stress the word “film” because that’s the only way I can describe a movie with so many emotional beats, such strong subtext, so many layers, so much complexity and so many gut wrenching moments.

From watching Mystique review autopsy files, to painfully watching the X-Men graphically die in a lynch mob of Sentinels can not be describes in comparison to other superhero movies. They felt less like scenes from another cape-inspired summer blockbuster and more like scenes from Schlinder’s List.

The movie also does an excellent job of being an allegory for racism; the trump card X-Men holds over all other heroes. It means something. Unlike Batman who is a rich playboy, or Iron Man who is a rich playboy or Spider-Man who is a broke supposedly hard luck case who none the less bags tons of pretty ladies, or Cap who is a universally loved war hero, the X-Men are outcasts. As the movie so perfectly depicts, they’re lives are not perfect. These characters don’t fall into normal caricatures of “good” and “bad”. Everyone is a mix, everyone is broken.

There’s no pretty girl for them to impress, most of them are not surrounded by wealth and all of them are normal faces who blend into the crowd but are not part of the crowd. The movie makes you feel truly sorry for that.

There is no superhero formula in this movie. The good guys don’t necessarily “win”, the bad guys don’t even “lose”. Even with a future averted, the future still is not set. And it leaves you with the feeling that maybe this never ends, and there is more to come. Much more.

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Review

Eish – used in South Africa to express exasperation or disbelief – where does it all go fiber on us exactly? I can’t finely pinpoint but somewhere in the rain (again) and behind the Vegas take down there is some sort of snore factor that takes precedent. I enjoy a destruction film but when a filmmaker becomes too preoccupied with the pretentious ideal that the film in question is somehow more than a destruction film, then there is so much human drama fodder to sift through in order to get to the good stuff. The flip side – the good stuff is truly awesome and relentless without skipping on annihilating as much as possible.

Maybe I just didn’t care about the main characters and their lives? Maybe I just didn’t care about anyone’s existence if it meant that the destruction would have to cease? Maybe I am just annoyed that Juliette Binoche and Bryan Cranston seem to set the precedent of how great the performance in this movie is going to be but then it turns out that they’re the best thing that isn’t a special effect?

Did Aaron Taylor-Johnson worry about how hot he looked constantly? Yes. He was ripped. The end. Did Elizabeth Olsen get to flex anything other than her sob skills? No. She cried so much. She cried probably just as much as Ken Watanabe stares, into the distance, at screens, out windows, he stares so much.

But the title is Godzilla and as far as the title is concerned, the film delivers. Godzilla is definitely well worth it. The humongous, roaring, destructive anti-hero with rocky-leathery skin and the somehow illusive existence is fun to watch. The build up was well timed. And the action was nicely paced so the viewer could soak it all up.

The story – Basically there are two new mutant creatures out to destroy all in order to procreate and destroy even more. In steps Godzilla because why should something else destroy what he is not? What more does one need to know?

The Amazing Spider Man 2

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(NO SPOILERS) The movie was awesome. The opening scene was intense, just how I’d predicted it. The way it became darker throughout the movie. The chemistry between Gwen and Peter was amazing. Dane Dehaan’s Harry Osborn was creepy, but damn good. I know this is a short review, but the movie was really good. I personally prefer Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker. Emma Stone makes a great Gwen Stacy. Green Goblin’s new glider was AWESOME. Dane Dehaan did a pretty good job with the character he was playing. Electro was awesome, and you did feel sorry for him BEFORE he became evil. Little old Max Dillon on his own made you feel sorry for. Although, I hated Paul’s performance of the Rhino. The Rhino sucked. I thought he was gonna be awesome, but man, was I wrong. In my head, I skipped his scenes.This is about the best Spidey movie since Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 1.

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Review

Attempting to determine the very worst thing about the oeuvre of Adam Sandler is akin to trying to decide which sort of cancer is the most horrible: even to finally settle on one isn’t to say that all the rest aren’t blights on humanity. But I think I may now have it.

It’s the smugness. The Sandler smug reaches a new nadir of appalling with Blended. For everything is presented with the same self-satisfied confidence that the audience is entirely onboard with the indisputable fact of every assumption with which the film presents us. “Parents should always be there for their kids” is thrown out here as existing on the same level of “clearly obvious truth” as “lesbians are hilarious,” “teenaged girls who aren’t Barbie dolls will constantly be mistaken for boys, and this is appropriate and hilarious,” “horrible bratty children who behave like violent felons are hilarious,” and “black people are wonderfully kooky minstrel entertainers, and hence hilarious.”

When I say that Blended is “Adam Sandler goes to Africa, via the tampon aisle,” I am being factually descriptive of this physically repulsive excuse for a movie. After an absurdly long setup that involves single dad Jim (Sandler: Grown Ups 2That’s My Boy) and single mom Lauren (Drew Barrymore: Big MiracleEverybody’s Fine) having a terrible blind date and then later meeting ugly — the opposite of the meet-cute — in the feminine hygiene section of a drugstore, they find themselves, along with their collective five kids, on a family holiday in South Africa. Don’t ask how it could possibly happen that two people who despise each other — and rightly so; they’re awful, and so is almost everyone else in this movie — can end up being surprised to discover that they are not only in the same far-distant foreign country, not only in the same resort hotel, but also forced to share a suite and every meal together. Even screenwriters Ivan Menchell and Clare Sera don’t seem to know how this could reasonably happen, and hope that we won’t notice — or won’t care — how they elide right over even the most major of plausibility issues.

The African stuff that makes up the too-chunky center of the movie was shot at the Sun City resort in South Africa, which was created as a luxury fantasy retreat for rich whites during the apartheid era. It’s like Disney World and Las Vegas wrapped up together, and it looks about as authentic as Epcot Center. If it didn’t already exist, it would have had to be invented for this movie, which appears to presume that “Africa” isn’t an enormous continent of varied cultures, but an invented exotic backdrop in which romance between visiting white Westerners will naturally blossom.

Oh, haven’t I mentioned? We are intended, from the very beginning, to see Jim and Lauren as perfect for each other and destined to be together. And even while your skin is crawling when they are “forced” to participate in a couples’ massage session, the movie is trying to force you to see them as adorable together. We are offered no evidence for the inevitability of their impending couplehood; we are presumed, perhaps, to have brought over some sort of good feeling from Sandler and Barrymore’s previous outings together, in The Wedding Singer and 50 First Dates. (I’ve seen neither movie, and can’t imagine I’d have found them appealing there either.)

That’s not even the best example of the can’t-be-bothered laziness of Blended. Sandler’s typical reflexive cruelty is a given — making fun of children really is low, but not unexpected. But there’s also random grandma abuse. There is no “joke” that won’t be rerun a dozen times, beaten until it’s dead, and then run over by a steamroller, just in case you missed it the first hundred times. There’s a take right into the camera — by one of those “funny” minstrel servant types — who shares the wisdom that “you won’t see that in New Jersey” after a sight that is considered to be comically shocking. There is some blatant product placement that is not only blatant product placement but also structured as an attempt at rehabilitation for that brand, which does not have the greatest of reputations. And of course, there is the stuff like a moment meant to be charming and sweet (and might be, in another context) that is interrupted by the sound of Sandler urinating nearby. We don’t even have to guess that Sandler — and by extension his presumed audience — is terrified of actual human emotion, because Jim states flat out that this is the case.

Wait! Maybe that’s the worst thing about Sandler movies: He cannot bear to let any moment onscreen not be about him and his smugness and his childish idiocy, even if it means he literally has to piss his way into a scene.

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Review

I am a pretty big sports fan. Despite this, though, I can be fairly picky with my sports movies. A few general questions that I always ask. First, why was this movie made? There are a ton of great moments that happen in sports, but not all of them deserve movies to made of them. And along with that, sometimes an ordinary event is glorified in the movie, which causes you to raise an eyebrow when you learn the actual events. Next, how faithful is this to the actual events? Yes, I know this is Hollywood and they are going to change things. But if they change things too much, it can be a problem. For example, if the actual person portrayed in the movie doesn’t like what Hollywood did with them, that is a problem. Finally, sports movies can be really cliché and predictable because there are only really two options for the ending — the team/player succeeds in their goal or the team/player fails, but a lesson is learned. So what else do you bring to the table that will give your movie substance and avoid being just a cliché sports movie?

Going into Million Dollar Arm, I was actually really excited because Disney had been raving about this movie for quite some time. I’m happy to report that it passes this test with flying colors. First off, yes this is a movie that deserved to be made. And no, it’s not just an ordinary event that was glorified. And while I’m at it, it seems pretty accurate to the actual events. This is a movie about a sports agent named JB Bernstein. He’s in a pretty dire situation and needs to make a huge splash or else business-wise he is in a lot of trouble. Using Yao Ming’s situation as inspiration, he decides to go on a quest to get the first Major League Baseball player from India. Just like all of China followed Yao Ming’s journey in the NBA (he made the all-star team even when he didn’t play most of the season because of fan voting in China), an MLB player from India would be equally as huge with how many people live there. With this idea in mind, Bernstein sets up the competition called the Million Dollar Arm, which is essentially a try-out where the top two throwers would get to come to America with the opportunity of trying out for an MLB team.

Is this a predictable sports movie? Of course. The events of this movie took place just a few years back and a quick wikipedia search can tell you all about these two players. But the point here isn’t to throw a curveball at audiences. The main focus isn’t even on telling the world about an extraordinary event that happened less than a decade ago. It’s all about relationships. Bernstein is a single man that is all business at first. What he seems to have missed is that he’s brought two human beings halfway across the world just to make a successful business move. These two Indian boys are still teenagers that have never been away from home, at least not so far away from home. They are scared, nervous, alone, and don’t even know the language at first. This is an emotional roller-coaster for everyone involved and watching it unfold is touching and beautiful.

What makes this movie work is the performances from all the actors. It’s a grand slam performance. Starting from the top, Jon Hamm plays JB Bernstein and if this movie came out in the fall, I’d say he’d be a good contender for Best Actor at the Oscars. It’d be a deserving nomination. Lake Bell plays the neighbor/love interest for JB. She does a fantastic job as the mediator between JB and the boys, helping JB come down to earth to treat the boys right. Finally, our two Indian players, Rinku and Dinesh are played by Indian actors Suraj Sharma and Madhur Mittal. These two are the stars of the show. From the very beginning, you become emotionally invested in them and their journey. You want them succeed. You cheer for them when they perform well. You are devastated when they slip up. You scream inside at Jon Hamm when he treats them poorly. You fall in love with Lake Bell when she takes them in. Sharma and Mittal are fairly new in the acted business; however, they are not unrecognizable. Sharma plays the lead role of Pi Patel in Life of Pi and Mittal shows up in Slumdog Millionaire. There’s also other great performances in this movie from the likes of Aasif Mandvi, Alan Arkin, Bill Paxton and Tzi Ma, but this will suffice.

Overall, Million Dollar Arm is a movie that is a must see in my opinion. Yes, there are a ton of huge summer blockbusters in the next month or two that will all fight for your attention, but don’t let this movie slip past you. If for some reason you find yourself tired of all the huge blockbusters, then this is definitely a movie that you should check out, because it will be a breath of fresh air. Even if you are not a sports fan, I think this is a movie that you will love, because like I said, it’s all about the relationships in the movie as opposed to the historical sporting event that is portrayed. If this movie were to come out at the end of the year, I would think it would be the type of movie that contends for an Oscar nomination or two. It’s that good. It will certainly join the ranks of all the great sports movies. My grade for Million Dollar Arm is a 9/10.

Neighbors Full Movie

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Review

Kelly and Mac, parents of baby Stella and talented swearers (in terms of quantity, if not quality), buy their first home and are worried when a fraternity acquires the house next door. After trying to get on, the late night noise proves an insurmountable problem and the two factions go to war.

Seth Rogan’s presence (as dad Mac) should tell you that this is a comedy: Rose Byrne as mum Kelly and Zac Efron as fraternity president Teddy, not so much. I went into this as someone who isn’t a fan of Rogen (but quite likes Byrne and Efron), predisposed to sympathise with the parents, and therefore tending towards prejudging the movie as something I would feel antagonistic towards despite having read positive things about it – I hate hate hated Project X, another “comedy” about party loving young people making their neighbours’ lives a misery because their right to be disruptive trumps the right of others to a peaceful existence.

But Bad Neighbours is quite funny and moves towards an ultimately satisfactory resolution (in the course of which Rogen and Efron have an improbable fight which is physically very funny indeed).

It is not without fault. It’s unclear exactly where Efron’s character lies: the affability with which he starts and finishes the film is at complete odds with the Mr Hyde transformation which appears to be provoked by the fact that Mac and Kelly phoned the police after specifically agreeing not to (even though they only did it because their repeated requests for quiet were ignored). The actions of the idiot policeman are not even slightly credible, and neither is the inactivity of the other neighbours. But, hey, it’s a comedy, and it turns out right in the end, so I can live with that.

Baby Stella is adorable.

Chef Full Movie

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Review

“Chef” explores potentially engaging and emotional themes of reconnecting with family and the quest for contentment and fulfillment in one’s vocation. Yet it does so in such a lighthearted, jovial manner that any gravity to the situations presented are all but lost. There’s entertainment in the scattered jokes and the overwhelmingly good-natured mood that permeates the entire film, but when every conflict is quashed within minutes and the predicaments barely register concern, the power to affect audiences dwindles. The drawn out pacing also lends to the feeling of insouciance towards weightier drama as a prolonged setup gives way to an even lengthier denouement that features almost exclusively playful nonchalance. “Chef” is unique and uplifting in its abundant display of merriment, but will likely leave viewers hungry for something with more substance.

Chef Carl Casper (Jon Favreau) loves to cook. Despite battling stifled creativity from his oppressive manager (Dustin Hoffman), Casper runs the kitchen of the Gauloises restaurant with relish, making even his relationships with his ex-wife Inez (Sofia Vergara) and young son Percy (Emjay Anthony) secondary to his culinary exploits. But when a very public clash with uppity food critic Ramsey Michel (Oliver Platt) finds its way onto the internet, and Caspar finds himself out of a job, he travels to Miami at the behest of Inez to attempt to reconnect with his son. Initially reluctant to the drastic change, the headstrong cook finally agrees to run a mobile food truck, and with the help of his former sous-chef Martin (John Leguizamo), Carl and Percy embark on a road trip that will take them from Florida to Louisiana to Texas – and back into each other’s lives.

It’s undeniably unusual to see a film with essentially zero conflict and a setup that lasts nearly one hour – resulting in an opening and a closing but no real significance in the middle. It’s also understandably odd to see a theatrical feature about a food truck. Although “Chef” is largely focused on a cordon bleu who learns to love his job again, while also bonding with his son and patching his kinship with his ex-wife, a prominent portion of screen time is devoted to the comestibles themselves. Close-ups of dishes sizzling, fillets being sliced to reveal rare juiciness, fish and shrimp receiving colorful garnishes and sauces, and desserts lightly dusted with powdered caramel and sugars are practically characters of their own (save for the shocking discerping of a pig). It’s tantalizing and inspiring but certainly doesn’t coax the story forward.

Emjay Anthony delivers a fine performance for a child actor, though his use as a motivation for Casper to pursue new enterprises and relate with his son are noticeably flimsy. Percy only pouts offscreen and the few times he does so are brief and easily amended. Similarly, Casper never fights with Inez or Molly (a throwaway role for Scarlett Johansson) or even rival Marvin (a nothing part for Robert Downey Jr. – yet another example of a big star in a tiny role). As for the rest of the cast, Favreau is genuine and right at home as a food connoisseur, while Vergara proves once again that she’s only capable of playing one type of character. Downey Jr. also restates his comfort with quirky, sarcastic, overconfident personas.

There’s commentary on social media in the form of both mockery and flattery, at once teasing the technology and touting its effectiveness. Older, disinterested Carl can’t quite comprehend the details of Twitter, while his young boy doesn’t understand the emotional complexities of divorce. The food critic’s name is too obviously a reference to Gordon Ramsey, whose show “Kitchen Nightmares” famously introduced the world to an unavoidably comparable Twitter meltdown and self-imposed character assassination in the Amy’s Baking Company episode. And the conclusion feels like a live-action take on “Ratatouille.” The extreme lack of cinematic friction results in the plot languishing in easygoing meandering; creating a pleasant, breezy, feel-good flick that has no poignancy or pathos.

Watch Obvious Child Full Movie

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Review

When I went to Sundance, I was just trying to see any movie I could, and I decided to try and see this movie. I do not regret seeing this movie at all. It is a very original story and has heart. It is a very interesting take on the ‘Pregnant but don’t want a baby story’. While this movie might have benefited from one or two extra scenes in it, I still give it a 10/10 because I loved the movie and it was filled with solid performances from everyone. The movie itself is one of the stories where a girl decides to have a one night stand, gets pregnant, but does not want to have a child. I won’t go any further for fear of spoiling anything but you should see it

Moms Night Out Full Movie

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Review

Just in time for this weekend’s annual homage to our mothers, “Mom’s Night Out” overtly reminds parents everywhere — and moms in particular — of the daily, moment-to-moment demands put upon the women who have delivered us all into this crazy world.

The premise is pretty basic: Three moms are looking for an evening off from chasing after their kids and worrying that those children are one small step away from either causing or being the victim of some horrible disaster.

Sarah Drew of “Grey’s Anatomy” fame is Allyson, an aggressively Type A personality and total neat freak, wound so tightly you think she’s about to snap at any moment. Sean Astin sweetly plays Allyson’s ever-patient husband who clearly supports his wife’s deep need to have a break from being what she calls “the Bruce Banner of stay-at-home moms.”

A funny note: Allyson’s way-too-intense (no surprise there!) mommy blog has been losing followers. She’s dropped (ahem) from four readers down to three.

Along with Allyson we have her guru — her pastor’s wife, Sondra, played by Patricia Heaton — plus Izzy, Allyson’s BBF (Andrea Logan White) who is stuck in a big quandary. Her husband (Robert Amaya) is not so wild about his parenting abilities with the couple’s twins, and she can’t bring herself to tell him that another baby is on the way.

In this year seeing an increase in faith-based films, “Moms’ Night Out” also falls into that category — but in a far more subtle way than “Heaven Is For Real” or “God’s Not Dead.” The life lessons about morals and values are soft-pedaled pretty well and packaged in a mostly funny romp as the trio of mothers’ night-on-the-town turns in all sorts of bizarre and wacky ways.

From an ill-fated trip to a fancy restaurant — where they only sought to have a lovely, fancy dinner they did not have to prepare — to a missing car to a missing child to run-ins with the cops to a tattoo parlor caper, things quickly go downhill.

Some of these plot twists require more than the normal suspension of logic that often happens in similar comedies. Yet the characters are all appealing — especially the ones played by Drew and Heaton. Country music star Trace Adkins adds a humorous touch as a motorcycle gang boss named “Bones.”

It is Adkins, along with Heaton’s character (she’s also a major producer of the film) who deliver some of the best lessons of all here: that despite the difficulties, raising children is a true gift and blessing. Now that’s something worth remembering as we approach Mother’s Day 2014.