Archive for January, 2017

Anger Management

Posted in Comedy, Movie Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , , on January 27, 2017 by Mystery Man

PLOT:

After a dispute on an airplane, gentle businessman Dave Buznik finds himself in anger management counseling. But when his therapist — who seems to have his own anger issues — moves into Dave’s house, he approaches the brink of insanity.

What people are saying:

“Unless you’re 15 at heart, you may need anger management yourself after sitting through this aggressively crass comedy, which alternates between mean-spirited slapstick and arbitrary uplift.” 2 stars

“Hysterical. Funny. Outrageous. If you dont laugh during this film you ought to stop watching comedies. The best Adam Sandler film yet. It makes me angry that anyone could doubt this film. And if you dont get that joke I dont know how I can help your movie tastes. Seriously, though its got a lot of laughs. ” 4 stars

“”Anger Management” had a lot of potential pinning Adam Sandler and Jack Nicholson together, but it is ultimately crass and stupid, like most Sandler films. It does, however, have some very funny moments that help push the plot along.” 3 stars

“It’s one of Adam Sandler’s last decent comedies. Anger Management is a hit-or-miss type of comedy but it’s enough if you looking for time to kill.” 3 stars

“This movie was one of the strangest movies I have ever seen. I don’t necessarily mean that in a bad way, it was just different. The twist ending really made me happy, because I got so upset when everyone was like, “CALM DOWN, SIR,” and he wasn’t doing anything. Looking back (and trying not to spoil anything), I realize they just wanted him to express himself because he was so quiet. Also, at times it made me laugh really hard. It was funny and even though it was sort of weird, I think it was worth it.  ” 3 stars

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Small Soldiers

Posted in Action/Adventure, Animation, Movie Reviews, Sci-Fi/Fantasy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 27, 2017 by Mystery Man

PLOT:

The Commando Elite are toy action figures programmed to annihilate another toy group, the Gorgonites. But before the Elite have been tested, the son of a toy store owner opens them, causing the Elite to attack the children playing with them.

What people are saying:

“…this smells like a script slapped together around a toy-product launch.” 2 stars

“This film broke new ground in movie puppetry and special effects when it was made in 1998 and continues to influence directors working with practical effects. Equal parts cautionary tale and comedy, with a little bit of brilliance thrown in for good measure. Add in an all-star cast and an intelligently written script and you have one of the 90’s best movies.” 5 stars

“Too disturbing to really be a kid film, Small Soldier brings back childhood memory thanks to the Toy Story like storyline with an adult twist.” 3 stars

“After watching this, I am firmly convinced that somebody HIGH on drugs decided to write a screenplay combining war, science fiction, and Toy Story. Then somebody out of their mind said “This sounds like a GREAT idea! Let’s make this movie!”. This movie is indescribably weird. One of the bright spots in this movie is Tommy Lee Jones, who did a really good job with his military role.” 3 stars

“Another underrated gem in a career full of them by ever under-appreciated master filmmaker Joe Dante, he of Gremlins, Innerspace, The Burbs and Explorers to name but a few, in fact this is a sort of spiritual sequel to Gremlins, only with military microchipped toys terrorizing a small town instead. It’s frequently inventive, loads of fun and has great effects plus the sly, lightly subversive and biting edge that Dante brings to his movies (this is a hugely anti military/anti-corporation movie that even rips into it’s own Burger King promoted merchandising, biting the hand that feeds it as it were) It’s also surprisingly violent and gleefully anarchic. A great film!” 4 1/2 stars

Trailer Thurday 1/26

Posted in Trailer Thursday with tags on January 26, 2017 by Mystery Man

It’s Trailer Thursday!!!

Bringing this month of musicals to an end, is a very early musical that stars a very young Bing Crosby. Check out the trailer for Going Hollywood.

The Equalizer

Posted in Action/Adventure, Movie Reviews, Thrillers/Mystery with tags , , , , , , , on January 20, 2017 by Mystery Man

PLOT:

In this action-thriller based on the hit 1980s TV series, former intelligence operative Robert McCall comes out of retirement to help a young prostitute, only to end up in the Russian Mafia’s crosshairs.

What people are saying:

“great, bloody action. it’s always fun to watch Washington get revenge Man-on-fire style. the villain did a great job, Washington did a great job, fight scenes were great, the music was horrible, the ending was too far fetched. over all it was fun entertaining film, but it was nothing g too special” 3 1/2 stars

“Extremely everything you think it will be; extremely violent, extremely clique, extremely predictably ……BUT extremely AWESOME! We loved it! I have noticed that the critics either love it of hate it and I agree that is how it will be with most people. So here goes my opinion. I think in places The Equilizer seems a bit slow at the beginning (better said, it is methodical), but when it takes off it is like a rocket. Make no mistakes this is a extremely violent, vulgar language revenge film . For those who care there is no nudity just a few racy pictures. To say too much about the plot would give too many spoilers. So I’ll just put it this way…If the movie “TAKEN” and the comic “The Punisher” had a child it would be The Equilizer.” 4 stars

“I really did not like this particular Denzel movie and I am a fan. the script was mediocre, the story line- predictable and altogether boring. I love action and it had a lot of it. I like Antoine Fuqua films however, this must have been part of his contract for X amount of films as this one was lackluster and pretty meaningless.” 2 stars

“oh snap! Liam Neeson can suck it Denzel is the man to be! this movie blew away my expectations. it was a little slow in the beginning but with enough pay off that I very much enjoyed it.” 4 stars

“Much more that simply an action film, I particularly liked the character development of Mr. Washington that encouraged viewing him as a real person, most likely an insomniac due to his regrets over performing his former duties as obviously a government agent of some type, who had gone back to a somewhat “normal” life, and was anything but a robotic killer bent upon avenging those abused by the Russian “mafia.” All told, it was a well-told tale and, though violent, occurred in the “formerly” violent world inhabited by his “former” self. A very good portrayal by a very good actor surrounded by all types of likewise good actors, and very well directed. ” 4 stars

Trailer Thursday 1/19

Posted in Trailer Thursday with tags on January 19, 2017 by Mystery Man

It’s Trailer Thursday!!!

Keeping with the theme of classis MGM Musicals for this month, let’s have a look at the popular French themed musical, Gigi.

The Intern

Posted in Comedy, Movie Reviews with tags , , , , , , , on January 15, 2017 by Mystery Man

PLOT:

Agreeing to participate in a community outreach program, e-commerce entrepreneur Jules Ostin hires a 70-year-old intern — who ends up bringing his special brand of business savvy to her fashion enterprise.

What people are saying:

“Interesting premise where the intern is a retired senior citizen. Originality basically stops there. This movie relied on its two stars. Hathaway is worthy, but DeNiro’s brilliance carries an otherwise mediocre film.” 2 stars

“Truly loved this movie! My wife couldn’t stop raving about it. I disagree about what some other reviewers commented on regarding the last “third” of the movie and it’s ending and I’m a hard judge on endings. I believe what happened in the last third added to the reality of the situation and the ending was quite appropriate. This is the “supreme” feel-good movie with some wonderful life-lessons. It was perhaps Anne Hathaway’s best piece of work. You will enjoy it immensely!” 5 stars

“Probably what I liked best from this movie was seeing Robert De Niro and Anne Hathaway as the two lead characters here as I really like the both of them. Anne looked especially gorgeous in this one and did a great job as usual. De Niro is very likeable too. The supporting cast is fine enough, not really annoying except for one of the interns named Davis, but it didn’t really do anything to take away from this film. If anything maybe it’s just a tad too long, but overall it’s a good watch.” 3 stars

“I LOVE Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro so I was guessing this was going to be a pretty decent movie. I was wrong. I have no idea why this movie is getting high reviews from people. The story is about a widowed old guy failing at retirement and going back to work at a job. Does that sound appealing to you? He meets a beautiful female boss and has no romance or sexual tension with her. THAT is the story. They try to dress it up. But in the end the take-away message is “Don’t work things out with your spouse.” The worst movie I have seen in a long time.” 1 star

“it’s not the comedy that will make you laugh, it’s the comedy that will make you smile. Nancy Meyers makes movies for women, and this time for senior as well. There is no single story, more like fragments of people’s lives. Senior internship program of an e-commerce start-up founded by a young female already set the scene up for the drama and conflicts. Women can relate to this movie, especially women with a purpose. It was also nice to see the office scenes with a lot of open space, MacBooks, large windows, and the CEO bikes in the office.” 3 stars

Underworld: Blood Wars

Posted in Action/Adventure, Movie Reviews, Sci-Fi/Fantasy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 13, 2017 by Mystery Man

PLOT (spoiler alert!!!):

The remaining vampire covens are on the verge of being wiped out by the Lycans. Both species are searching for Selene: the vampires seeking justice for the deaths of Viktor and Marcus, and the Lycans, led by Marius, intending to use her to locate Eve, whose blood holds the key to building an army of vampire-werewolf hybrids.

Semira, a council member of the Eastern Coven, wishes for Selene to be granted clemency so that the latter can train the Eastern Coven’s neophyte Death Dealers. To that end, she enlists Thomas to plead Selene’s case before the full council. Thomas succeeds and Selene arrives at the Eastern Coven with David. Selene is betrayed by Varga, Semira’s ally and lover, who poisons the former and slaughters the Death Dealers at the behest of Semira, who then begins draining Selene of her blood, which Semira intends to drink and gain her power, but is interrupted when Thomas and David come to her rescue. In the ensuing fight, Thomas is killed delaying Semira and Varga so that David can escape with an incapacitated Selene. During the escape, Semira and Varga are shocked to observe that the pair is immune to the effects of sunlight.

The pair seeks refuge with the Nordic Coven. They are pursued by Alexia, an Eastern Coven vampire dispatched by Semira, who consumes the blood from Selene and appears to be strengthened by its ingestion. Selene and David arrive at Vador, the stronghold of the Nordic Coven, where Vidar, the Elder, reveals that David was the son of the High Elder Amelia, making him the legitimate heir to the Eastern Coven.

The Nordic Coven is attacked by Marius and the Lycans, who were alerted by Alexia, Marius’s mole and lover. The Nordic vampires, led by Vidar’s daughter Lena, fight with Selene and David. Selene engages in single combat with Marius, who demands to know Eve’s location; Selene insists she does not know the location, being confirmed by Alexia by tasting some of Selene’s blood. Marius sounds the retreat for his troops and Selene, no longer wishing to live, slides herself under the now-broken ice of the lake.

Upon Alexia’s return to the Eastern Coven’s castle, she informs Semira of the events at the Nordic Coven. Semira kills her, revealing to have always known of Alexia’s treachery, and has been manipulating Alexia for her own ends. David returns to the Eastern Coven and informs the Elite Council of his parentage, presenting himself as the rightful heir to the coven. Semira is arrested by none other than Varga, whose ultimate loyalty is to the rightful leadership of the coven. She is subsequently imprisoned in the dungeons. The coven comes under attack by Marius and his forces. The Lycans blow holes in the castle’s walls, letting in sunlight, killing most of the vampires. David continues fighting, only to find himself face to face with Marius. Selene suddenly reappears, wearing a Nordic appearance and coat over her normal Death Dealer uniform. It is revealed that the Nordic Coven revived her and in doing so enabled her to develop new abilities. She swiftly begins dispatching the Lycans, as the rest of the Nordic Coven, led by Lena, join the fight. While Selene is making her way through the castle, the guards in the dungeons are killed by Semira, who then escapes from her cell. Selene and David find Marius, but David is waylaid by Semira. As Marius and Selene’s fight continues, a drop of Marius’s blood lands on Selene’s lips. She is suddenly flooded by a series of blood memories in which Marius finds Michael. She sees Marius capturing Michael and slitting his throat in order to collect his blood and consume it. Believing that Michael is dead, she bites her own wrist, using her own blood memories of the time she has spent with Michael, Eve, and David to fuel her rage. Although Marius has transformed, Selene rips out his spine, killing him instantly. David manages to kill Semira. He shows Marius’s severed head to the Lycans, who decide to retreat.

In the aftermath, Selene, David, and Lena are chosen as the new Elders. It is revealed that after being resurrected at the Nordic Coven, Selene was reunited with Eve, who has been following her mother.

REVIEW:

Vampires and werewolves aren’t really the popular thing in our culture anymore (thanks, Twilight franchise). They’ve mostly been replaced by zombies. Yet, here we are with a 5th Underworld film, Underworld: Blood Wars. I’ll be the first to admit, I’m not exactly jumping up and down with anticipation. Hopefully, after I watch it, I’ll change my mind,

What is this about?

The next installment in the blockbuster franchise, UNDERWORLD: BLOOD WARS follows Vampire death dealer, Selene (Kate Beckinsale) as she fends off brutal attacks from both the Lycan clan and the Vampire faction that betrayed her. With her only allies, David (Theo James) and his father Thomas (Charles Dance), she must stop the eternal war between Lycans and Vampires, even if it means she has to make the ultimate sacrifice

What did I like?

Violent femme. I may be remembering wrong, but I seem to recall the Underworld being a bloody masterpiece when it came to the violence. Yet, the following films in the franchise were much more frugal with the way they showed the killings. As this film begins, we return to the ways of the first film. Kate Beckinsale’s Selene shoots, claws, and bites her way through her army of combatants.

Leather. Let’s be honest about one thing, shall we? A very big reason that this franchise is so popular is because Kate Beckinsale is running in skintight leather. Well, there is plenty of that in this film, though, in the final act, she is covered up with a fur coat. It is cold up there in the Nordic country, after all.

Immortal Kombat. Chances are, if you’re reading this, then you either have played Mortal Kombat, or at least know about it. Well, there is this scene late in the film where Selene and Marius, the primary antagonist and leader of the Lycans, are fighting. Not to spoil anything, but let’s just say someone pulls a fatality on the other.

What didn’t I like?

In the blood. Given the length of time between this and the first couple of films, I can understand a need to refresh the audience’s memory. However, with all the blood flashbacks were forced to endure, we might as well have watched the previous films all over again. On top of that, these flashbacks seems to get longer and longer each time and, after a while, it seemed as if they were nothing but something to fill up time.

Pulver-ize. The secondary antagonist, a scheming vampire called Semira is part of another issue I have with this film. First off, the actress that plays her, Lara Pulver, seems to be doing her best Eva Green impression (at one point I thought that’s who she was). Second, I wasn’t buying into her. Had her little boy toy, played by Bradley James been a secondary antagonist, I could have understood it. He was there to train Death Dealers and now Selene has come in. It makes sense, but with this chick, all I could think of was the cliché lover scorned.

Humans…or lack thereof. On one side we have vampires. On the other, Lycans. In the middle, regular human beings. Wait…I don’t recall seeing any humans in here. The last film, Underworld: Awakening, gave us plenty, perhaps too much human interaction/casualty in the war. The others, have at least shown a few bystanders, people frequenting the local pub, etc. I’m not sure why we don’t see some sort of human this time around. Perhaps they were all wiped out. Who knows? Still, the lack of humans, whether they were interacting with the vampires and lycans, or not leaves one to question.

Final verdict of Underworld: Blood Wars? Putting it bluntly, if you’re not already a fan of the franchise, then I doubt the film will do anything for you. While it was mildly entertaining, at best, I feel that so much more could have been done to keep the audience invested. The time to change anything about this franchise may be too late, though. Do I recommend this flick? I am not saying yes and I am not saying no.

3 3/4 out of 5 stars