Trailer Thursday 9/24

Posted in Trailer Thursday with tags on September 24, 2015 by Mystery Man

It’s Trailer Thursday!!!

Earlier this week, Jimmy Fallon pulled off the impossible, reuniting Keenan & Kel on his show. In case you missed it, the clip is all over the internet. One of the highlights of their reunion was a sketch from their cult hit, Good Burger.

I got to thinking, why not use the trailer for that film for this week’s “Trailer Thursday” So, please enjoy!!!


Frankie & Alice

Posted in Movie Reviews, Drama with tags , , , , , , , on September 20, 2015 by Mystery Man

PLOT (spoiler alert!!!):

The film primarily takes place in Los Angeles in 1973. Frankie, a black female gogo dancer, unknowingly suffers from dissociative identity disorder, caused by a traumatic incident from her childhood (the death of a white man she was in love with, and her mother murdering her newborn when she realized the child’s father was her white lover), which she has repressed. The film begins with Frankie performing at a local strip club. She is one of the best strippers at the club, and often demands the attention of wealthy Wall Street businessmen. One night the club’s female employees go out for a “Girls Night”. As the girls observe all the men at the bar, Frankie gets the attention of a well-known bartender. She agrees to go to his home for casual sex. Before the two can engage in any sexual activity, Frankie switches to an alter ego and cracks the man’s head open with a vase. Word of Frankie’s violent activity spreads to the strip club quickly, and Frankie is fired from the needed job. The same manic episodes occur while Frankie is at the laundromat and a wedding. During a session with the psychiatrist Frankie learns that she has two alters: Genius, a seven-year-old child; and Alice, a Southern white racist woman, whom Frankie struggles to overcome. Through regular psychiatric sessions with her doctor, she begins to recall the traumatic events that led to her split personality. She realizes that a white man with whom she was in love died in a car accident while they were on the road. In the same session, she also uncovers the memory of the birth of her child. Moments after the birth, her mother realizes that the child is half-white and takes it away to kill it, thus triggering her personality to split.

After she watches the taped sessions and puts everything together, she begins the healing process, taking control of her life and semi-integrating the personalities that Dr. Oz assures her will always be present.


There was a time when I was obsessed with all things Halle Berry. I even wanted bad things to happen to the guy she was married to at the time. To an extent, I’m still obsessed with her, which is why when I come across a film of hers that I did not know existed I have to check it out. Here’s hoping that Frankie & Alice will be far superior to Dark Tide.

What is this about?

In this true-life psychological drama, a black woman battles to vanquish the racist alter ego that’s taken root inside her unsettled consciousness. With help from a psychiatrist, she explores the traumatic childhood event at the root of her problems.

What did I like?

Oscar was no fluke. Remember when Halle Berry won that Oscar for Monster’s Ball? There was speculation that she only got it because she got naked and had dirty sex on screen with Billy Bob Thornton. Only the voters know for sure, but i can say that she acted her firm little behind off in that movie and is doing just as much if not more in this one. She has to portray not one, not two, but three distinct characters, but they all live in the same body. It takes some talent to pull that off, true talent, ladies and gentlemen! Now why couldn’t she do Storm justice in the X-Men films?

Mama, is that you? I’m from the era where families would gather around the television every night and watch shows together. With my family, one of these shows was The Cosby Show. I shudder to think of what it would have been like had I had Claire Huxtable for mother and got in trouble at school. “Let the record show” that this woman was beautiful, successful, and able to do her matronly duties. What a woman! Phylicia Rashad more or less disappeared after the show ended, popping up here and there. I must say that i can see her as Halle Berry’s mother, though. They have enough of a similar look, even though Rashad has not aged well, to pass for mother and daughter. Good on you, casting people!r

Music. Set in the 70s, one has to know that you’ll be hearing some good ol’ soul/r & b hits, but i wasn’t expecting to also get a nice influx of jazz, as well. Not just a random jazz song playing in the background, mind you, but an explanation for why he was listening to jazz. For this jazz lover and aficionado, I really was able to appreciate it because typically these films just give us some popular songs of the day and a current rap song to play over the end credits.  By not following that pattern, this film earned tremendous amounts of respect from me, and many others who have similar viewpoints when it comes to film music.

What didn’t I like?

Supporting players. Halle Berry and Stellan Skarsgard are not only the focal point of the film, but they are the shining points of this film. While this is great, the other cast members do little to nothing. Why is this? Who knows? My theory is that the writers were so intent on making sure Berry was given a meaty part that everyone else’s suffered. I also believe that there were some scenes that ended up on the cutting room floor, which would have fleshed out some characters and not made them so one-dimensional, such as Berry’s sister, played by Chandra Wilson.

Alice. I wonder how it is that Frankie came up with a southern belle racist as one of her personalities. What triggered the mixture  e, if you will, that would go on to create such an ironic personality? Seems to me that she didn’t see Frankie’s reflection in the mirror. She must not have. I can just tell this is the kind of woman who would go crazy if she saw she was in a black woman’s body. This isn’t Quantum Leap, after all! Alice is the creepiest of all the personalities. They should have made this a genuine thriller and let Alice run wild.

Tara. A few years back, there was this show called United States of Tara in which the titular character had multiple personalities brought on by childhood trauma. As the show progressed, a new personality appeared and began to kill off the others. It was…interesting, to say the least. Where am i going with this? Well, i can’t help but wonder if that was made with that show lingering overhead. The similarities are there, women with multiple personalities, supportive families, etc.

Frankie & Alice is a dark, emotional, psychological drama that captures the audience’s attention from beginning to end You are constantly invested and intrigued as to what will happen to this woman and her other personalities. I think that is the real selling point for this film. Such a shame that it didn’t get better publicity. I believe this could have been a contender. Do i recommend this? Yes, it is isn’t very often we get to see Berry flex those acting chops, and her ability to seamlessly transition between characters is remarkable. You need to check it out ASAP!

4 out of 5 stars

Trailer Thursday 9/17

Posted in Trailer Thursday with tags on September 17, 2015 by Mystery Man

It’s Trailer Thursday!!!

The last time I visited Disneyworld, I meandered over to MGM Studios and took a ride on “The Great Movie Ride”. A rather tame ride, if you must ask, but for a movie geek such as myself, it was like taking a bath in chocolate.

While standing in line, waiting to board the ride, we were treated to the trailer for a film from the 30s, Footlight Parade. One of these days, I’ll get around to watching this film, myself, but in the meantime, check out the trailer…

The Other Woman

Posted in Chick Flicks, Comedy, Movie Reviews, Romantic with tags , , , , , , on September 15, 2015 by Mystery Man

PLOT (spoiler alert!!!):

Carly, an attorney, has just started a relationship with Mark, a man she had sex with eight weeks prior. She is upset when Mark tells her he has to go out of town but decides to go over to his house to seduce him. She is horrified to meet Kate, Mark’s wife. While initially hostile, the two women befriend one another. Kate then discovers that Mark is seeing another woman, whom she initially believes to be Carly, but both she and Carly discover that Mark is seeing a third woman, Amber.

Carly and Kate travel to the beach, where Kate has a run-in with Amber, and the two women inform her that Mark has been cheating on all of them. They decide to take revenge. They spike his drinks with estrogen to give him breasts and a laxative to cause him diarrhea, and put hair-removal cream in his shampoo. In the course of carrying out their pranks, they discover that Mark has been embezzling from various companies at his workplace. Meanwhile, Carly begins to connect romantically with Kate’s brother Phil. In addition, Amber confides to Carly that she is seeing someone else as well. However, their camaraderie begins to fall apart when Kate finds herself falling in love with Mark again after an investor’s dinner. Carly exposes Mark’s fraud, upsetting Kate.

Later, when Mark goes to the Bahamas on a supposed business trip, Kate decides to follow him there and expose him. She finds Carly and Amber at the airport, who explain what Mark has been up to – using Kate as the owner of the companies he defrauded, which if discovered would result in her going to prison. She also finds out that Mark has been seeing yet another woman: someone he has met on this trip. This, and the possibility of facing prison, motivate Kate to take action with the help of Carly’s legal expertise.

When Mark returns from vacation, he visits Carly at her office. He is locked in the conference room by Carly’s assistant and friend, Lydia, and is shocked to find all three women who proceed to confront him with his infidelities and embezzlement. With Carly as her attorney, Kate presents divorce papers and a list of their assets. Kate reveals that she has returned the embezzled money to the companies, which saves the couple from prison time but leaves Mark bankrupt, much to his shock and hysterical outrage. Additionally, Mark’s business partner Nick arrives and fires Mark upon the discovery of the crime. In his anger and rush to leave, Mark smashes into the glass office twice, the second time shattering it and severely injuring himself. He then finds his car being towed away and earns a punch in the face from Carly’s father, Frank. Appreciating Kate’s honesty, Nick offers her the chance to take over Mark’s job.

In the film’s epilogue, Carly and Phil fall in love, and the couple are expecting a child; Amber marries Frank; and Kate works as a CEO with Mark’s former business partners, with the company making a profit under her leadership.


Alright! Today, I’m going to sit here and actually watch The Other Woman. I’ve been putting this off pretty much since it was initially released. Featuring the fantasy inducing trio of Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann, and Kate Upton, I think this will be a worthy viewing. Let’s find out if I am right, shall we?

What is this about?

When she finds out that her boyfriend is married and that she’s his mistress, a woman teams up with the jerk’s wife to get revenge. Nicki Minaj makes her live-action debut in this comedy about getting the upper hand in a relationship.

What did I like?

Now and then. For the longest time now, Cameron Diaz has been the poster girl for hotness in Hollywood, but time is starting to catch up with her. Don’t get me wrong, she still looks amazing, but age is starting to show, which is a good thing, I guess, as it just shows us that she isn’t going under the knife every other day or using some other outlandish technique to stay young and relevant. I bring this up because there is a scene where she is on the beach in a bikini and sees Kate Upton’s character, immediately comparing herself to her. This brought to mind her scene from Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle for some reason. Maybe it was the body comparison. Still, seeing what used to be hot and what currently is was interesting (they both are smokin’ in my book, btw)

Working together. Diaz, Upton, and Leslie Mann should not know about each other, let alone become good friends. Interesting that the film went that way, but what I found more intriguing was how well Mann and Diaz played off each other. The comedic sensibilities of these two women was on point as they bounced jokes off each other like a seasoned comedy duo. When Upton, who is not an actress, joins them, all she has to do is tell her lines and look hot. It helps that she does seem to have a bit of a knack for comedy. Maybe if she sticks with the acting, we’ll get more of her in comedic roles.

Hit the beach. Your films stars 3 gorgeous women, 2 of which are known for having amazing bikini bodies. Do you stick them in an apartment in the city or take a trip down to the tropics where they can show themselves off? Not to mention the scenery itself was breathtaking. Now, I feel as if I should make some mention of the fact that this was nothing more than an excuse to get these women to parade around half-naked for most of the movie but, the fact is, Leslie Mann never dons a bikini, Cameron Diaz only has one scene where she is bikini clad, and Kate Upton has two. They aren’t parading around “setting women back” or whatever.

What didn’t I like?

Fart jokes. In theory, this is more of an “adult” movie. That is to say that the target audience is a more mature demographic. So, why is it that they felt the need to lower themselves to the use of potty humor? I understand that they were out for revenge on this guy, and the laxative thing was funny, up until they went all the way to the bathroom with it. Some things work better through the power of suggestion, if you know what I mean.

Schoolmarm. Leslie Mann’s character is arguably the best thing about this film. While Cameron Diaz is too busy being the cold-hearted lawyer bitch and Kate Upton is stopping just shy of being a throwback to the ahead beach bimbos of yesteryear, Mann is a bag of emotions that is normally too much for me, but I found myself easily connecting with. Maybe because I’ve recently been in a similar situation. That being said, I take umbrage with the decision to dress her as frumpy as can be. Now, given the fact that she’s standing toe to toe with Diaz and Mann, she’s bound to look a little out of place, but some of the outfits she wore were more fitting someone living alone with 12 cats, rather than a housewife with a husband (loving or not).

Annoyance. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the big screen debut of that future Oscar winner, Nick Minaj! Yes, that creature of untold fairness and absolutely no talent is here playing the typical sassy black “friend.” Making matter worse, she speaks in that weird accent she uses in her raps  and her time on American Idol. This woman, and I use that term lightly, is a pox on out society. She brings absolutely nothing to this film, other than some diversity.

As despicable a character as Nikolaj Coster-Waldau is on Game of Thrones, this film let him be the total douche we expect him to play. The problem is, we don’t get enough of a backstory to allow us to form a bias one way or another. Obviously, we should be cheering the ladies on in this endeavor, but he’s just so charming. The Other Woman presents the ridiculous idea of what would happen if a guy is cheating on his wife with 2 other women. A fantasy of many a man out there, I don’t think the execution worked as well as the filmmaker would have liked and this came off more as a some sort of man-hating chick flick. Do I recommend it? Well, it had plenty of funny moments, and you can’t go wrong with 3 beautiful women but I have to say no.

3 1/2 out of 5 stars

Royal Wedding

Posted in Classics, Movie Reviews, Musicals with tags , , , , , , on September 14, 2015 by Mystery Man

Royal Wedding

PLOT (spoiler alert!!!):

The story sees brother and sister Tom and Ellen Bowen as stars of a show Every Night at Seven, a Broadway success. They are persuaded to take the show to London, capitalizing on an imminent royal wedding.

On the ship, Ellen meets and quickly falls in love with the impoverished but well-connected Lord John Brindale. Whilst casting the show in London, Tom falls in love with a newly engaged dancer, Anne Ashmond. Tom assists Anne to reconcile her estranged parents and also asks his agent to locate Anne’s supposed fiancé in Chicago – only to discover that he’s married.

Carried away by the emotion of the wedding, the two couples decide that they will also be married that day.


Last night, I was watching some old TV shows on YouTube and Royal Wedding was recommended for me to watch. Normally, I don’t pay attention to the stuff they recommend, but this is a film that I’ve been curious about for a while now. Hopefully, this will be worth the wait!

What is this about?

Brother-sister dance duo Tom and Ellen Bowen (Fred Astaire and Jane Powell) get the chance of a lifetime when they’re booked for a London performance on the eve of Elizabeth II’s nuptials. In the course of their journey, Ellen meets her match in Lord Brindale, and Tom finds romance with a British hoofer. Will love break up the act?

What did I like?

Song and dance man. I am firmly entrenched as a member of Team (Gene) Kelly, but that doesn’t mean I don’t respect and admire the things Fred Astaire does. The man is a master show man when it comes to dancing, his warm voice brings emotion to the most lifeless of songs, and he isn’t a bad actor, either. What ever happened to guys like this? I know Hugh Jackman and Neil Patrick Harris can sing and dance, but the only time they get to show off these skill is when they host award shows or are in a play. Just think…NPH! Jackman! Kelly! Astaire! Now that’s some talent!

Art imitates life. It isn’t part of the plot, but there are shadows of a subplot where Jane Powell’s character wants to have fun rather than practice all the time. As it turns out, this is what happened with Astaire’s actual sister. She got fed up with him being such a taskmaster. This was about the time that he was making it big in Hollywood, so breaking the duo up was no big deal. Still, this must have been a deeply personal project for Astaire.

Solo. Early on in the picture, Astaire is waiting for Powell to show up so they can rehearse. While he is waiting for her (to not show), he performs a solo routine that is quite entertaining. Along with his trademark tap and class, he appears to parody himself and his friend Gene Kelly by using props known to both of them. It really is quite a treat to watch, if you ask me.

What didn’t I like?

Love interest. I don’t want to comment on someone’s looks, but in comparison, Sarah Churchill is nowhere near as attractive as Jane Powell. Perhaps they should have switched roles. I say this because I also bought the chemistry between Astaire and Powell more than I did between him and Churchill. When they were on screen together it was like watching magic happen, but when he and Churchill were together, the audience might as well have been watching paint dry.

Royalty? For a film called Royal Wedding, there sure is very little to do with said event. It is mentioned here and there, but not until the last few minutes do we get anything resembling royalty, unless you count the opening number. Does this hurt the picture? No, not really. I think had they forced some sort of royal in there, things would have been worse, but perhaps there should have been more of a focus toward the wedding that they made the trip to England for. Eyes on the prize, people!

Momentum. Pacing is something that nearly every film has an issue with it seems. In this case, things were going fine, for the most part, until the last act. At this point, everything needs to be resolved and tied up in a nice little package. Before we can rush into all of that, though, there has to be a point where everything comes almost to a complete stop. Why do these films follow this formula? It completely takes the audience out of it and by the time we get back into the swing of things, the film is over!

Royal Wedding was actually very entertaining. This is one of the few times we get to see Fred Astaire let his guard down and do comedic dance routines, as opposed to his normal classy ones. Great acting and some decent songs are really what spur this on, as well as outstanding production numbers. I guarantee you that without those, this would not be worth watching. Do I recommend it? Yes, this is a film that can be found pretty much anywhere, as it is currently in the public domain, so give it a shot sometime!

4 out of 5 stars

Trailer Thursday 9/10

Posted in Trailer Thursday with tags on September 10, 2015 by Mystery Man

It’s Trailer Thursday!!!

One of the films that gets tons of hate, but holds a special place in my heart is Dick Tracy. Since I’m a generous guy, I decided to share it you fine people this morning. So, enjoy the trailer!

Chicken Run

Posted in Animation, Family, Movie Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , on September 7, 2015 by Mystery Man

PLOT (spoiler alert!!!):

Mr. and Mrs. Tweedy run a failing chicken farm in Yorkshire; the chickens are caged in the style of a prison camp with a high fence and barbed wire, with two dogs that patrol the grounds. As their chickens are producing fewer eggs, Mrs. Tweedy comes up with the idea of converting their product from eggs to chicken pies, and orders a large automatic pie maker.

One chicken, Ginger, has long had visions of escaping with the help of her hen friends Babs, Bunty, and Mac, and two rats, Nick and Fetcher, that helps to acquire “contraband” from the Tweedy’s to aid Ginger’s plans. However, she is always caught and put into solitary for some time. During one such escapade, she learns of Mrs. Tweedy’s plan, and hastens her attempts to flee the camp. While thinking of a new plan, Ginger witnesses a Rhode Island Red rooster fly over the fence, and crash into one of the coops, breaking his wing. Ginger and the other chickens help to hide him from the Tweedys and care for his wing, learning that his name is Rocky. Ginger is particularly interested in Rocky’s ability to fly, and begs him to help train her and the other chickens to do the same. Rocky is coy, but proceeds to try to help train the chickens, unable to fully demonstrate due to his broken wing.

The pie making machine finally arrives and after some time, Mr. Tweedy completes the assembly and immediately goes for Ginger to test it out. Rocky is able to save Ginger and helps to damage the machine, giving the chickens only a short time to plan to escape while Mr. Tweedy repairs it. Amid the training, Rocky holds a large party to help relieve the stress, where it is revealed his wing is healed, and Ginger demands he show them how to fly the next day. When morning arrives, Ginger finds Rocky has fled, leaving behind a part of a poster that shows him to be a stunt rooster, shot out of a cannon from a nearby circus, and unable to fly on his own. Ginger and the other chickens are depressed. Fowler the rooster tries to cheer Ginger up by telling tales from his days as an RAF mascot, leading Ginger to the idea of creating an airplane to flee the Tweedy’s. All the chickens with extra help from the rats secretly construct the required parts for the plane from their coops while racing against Mr. Tweedy’s repairs. Meanwhile, Rocky, traveling the countryside, sees a billboard for Mrs. Tweedy’s Chicken Pies, and is inspired to go back to help.

With the machine fixed, Mr. Tweedy again goes for Ginger, but the chickens are ready to escape. With Rocky helping to knock Mr. Tweedy out, they tie Mr. Tweedy up and distract the dogs long enough to complete assembly of their plane. As they are taking off, Mrs. Tweedy chases them down and catches onto a light strand caught in the wheels. Mrs. Tweedy climbs the strand, intent on chopping Ginger’s head off, while Ginger races to severe the strand. Ginger does so in time, and sends Mrs. Tweedy straight into the vent of the pie machine, causing it to rupture, the force of the escaping gravy knocking down the barn they had constructed it in.

Later, the chickens have found a quiet glade where they can enjoy their freedom and raise their chicks, while Ginger and Rocky have developed a romantic relationship.


Wow! Has it really been 15 years since Chicken Run was first released? Where has the time gone? Seems like it was just yesterday, I tell ya! Since it has been quite some time since I last saw this film, I wonder how my opinion has changed on it, if at all.

What is this about?

Facing mortal peril, Rocky the rooster and Ginger the hen decide to rebel against evil farmers Mr. and Ms. Tweedy and lead their fellow chickens in a great escape from the farm where they are being held captive.

What did I like?

Cock of the walk. All but two of the chickens in this film are hens, even if one of the hens is questionable. Rocky, played by Mel Gibson, is pretty much the living embodiment of what you would expect from him. Cocky, full of himself, slightly deceitful, all characteristics that were associated with Gibson (at this point in time). He was a good choice for this character, though I do question why, since Rocky is American, they went with him. Why not just make him Australian? Oh well, no big.

Don’t need a man. Feminist, girl power stuff is not my cup of tea. I’m not against it, mind you, I just am not a fan of the “movement”. I tend to be in the unfortunate minority of people who think that everyone is equal. That being said, every now and then it is a treat to watch the girls take the lead, and this is a film that had maybe 5 males in it total and 4 of them are minor characters. The hens, specifically the one named Ginger aren’t fawning over Rocky. Well, they do, but that passes. I applaud the film for making these characters more realistic than one would expect, even if they are a bunch of hens.

Claymation. Even back in 2000, computers were running studios. For example, this was made at the time Pixar was really starting to take off, and yet it isn’t done with computers, but rather old school Claymation, a technique that in many ways parallels stop motion. It takes time, patience, and skill to get just a one second shot, imagine how long it took to do 90 minutes! Bravo, animators, bravo!

What didn’t I like?

Other animals. My grandparents lived on a farm and they had horses, chickens, pigs, cows, goats, and a couple of guinea. Most farms tend to have a variety of animals, so why is it that this chicken farm consist of all these chickens and a couple of rats? What, no cows? Horses? I’d even settle for a dog! It just felt unnatural to not have any other species around.

Barren maidens. Chickens lay eggs, everyone knows that. We also all know that chicks come from said eggs. Excluding the incubation period and all that jazz, one would figure that there would at least be some younger chicks around. As it seems, these are all the old housewife versions of these hens. They could have at least made the airheaded one that was always knitting sit on a nest or something.

Mr. Tweedy. If there is a villain in this film, it is the Tweedys. Mrs. Tweedy would be more of the primary antagonist, if you ask me. Mr. Tweedy, on the other hand, is just the typical henchman husband. He doesn’t seem to be particularly bright, he does whatever she says, and is called on to do “manly” tasks. He does however notice that the chickens are a bit organized, but who listens to the help, right? That is the problem I have with his character. This guy should have been made into more of a force, but instead they just stick him in a couple of situations and hope for the best.

Chicken Run has earned its place in animation history. Not only is this film full of fun, action, and comedy, but it does so without resorting to pop culture references, gross out humor, or insulting the audience’s intelligence. While I am not totally on board with the casting, they did a good enough job. I have to say that in the end this is a film that the whole family can sit together and enjoy. I highly recommend it!

5 out of 5 stars


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