Sunday, January 22, 2012

Underworld: Awakening (2011)

Directed by mans marlind, bjorn stein
Written by Len Wiseman john Hlavin, j. Michael Straczynski, & Allison Burnett
Starring Kate Beckinsale, India Eisley

If you like the series this is the best one. The action sequences are compelling and exciting. Every moment of this film has an element of danger and immediate importance. The emotion of the film is congruent with the action. All sides are fighting for good reason.

This film takes CGI a bit further then the original Underworld or Evolution because the lycons are much more animal-like. There are still the usual lycons but in this film there’s a new type of lycon forced to live underground in sewers and mutated to something resembling a large rate.

This film was fun and exciting to watch. No real need to see it in 3D, like I did, but I can’t wait to see the next one.

No rating. This is just a solid day at the movies. It’s the kind of film you can appreciate coming out of Hollywood. It’s just good fun. 

Friday, January 20, 2012

The Muppets (2011)

Directed by James Bobin
Written By Jason Segel, Nicholas Stoller, & Jim Henson (characters)
Starring Amy Adams, Jason Segel, & Kermit The Frog

This is a good movie. Kermit the frog is super pimp, and the gang still has that edgy dangerous fib we remember as kids. Ms. Piggy isn’t featured enough as usual and the story has lots of tangents that end up meaning more to us then the actual plot.

Jason Segal is brilliant as a terrible dancer and singer. He doesn’t have much to offer in terms of Muppet performances but he did co-write the thing so I’m glad he get to play a small role in the film. Amy Adams is my personal hero and so beautiful she steals the show. I love Amy Adams she is brilliant. You should go see this film just for her.

No rating. This movie by all rights should have gotten a top 5 rating. But the meaning of the film was lost on me. The whole movie is fun and totally Muppet-esk. To be honest, they should have added one thing to this film. There was just one element missing and all they had to do was simply insert this one single thing and the movie would have been perfect. That one thing that they left out is not so obvious but I want to reveal it to you. That one thing is… Mahna Mahna!

The Artist (2011)

Directed by   Michel Hazanavicius
Written By Michel Hazanavicius
Starring Jean Dujardin, Berenice Bejo and John Goodman

I could complain about this film quite a bit. First of all, it’s a film about filmmakers… that type of story within a story is a huge red flag… Also, our main character is a main character actor… you see where I’m going with this?

Not to belittle the story line but I don’t feel so bad for a rich actor who looses the limelight. To me that just seems obvious. Also, I tend to dislike films that have children or animals as main characters because they get away with cheap cuteness and easy adoration. The Dog in this movie is a Jack Russell and it is adorable…

Now, that I’ve ripped the story a new one, I want to say… “GO SEE THIS FILM.” I’m not saying that because it’s amazing, brilliant, or hilarious, it isn’t. But I promise no one will even attempt something like this again for a long time.

 There is nothing like sitting in a theatre watching a silent film. It’s an experience to sit in a crowded room of people… in the dark… and be silently watching a flicker of lights on a screen. This kind of movie makes the viewer self-aware.

Top 5 rating. Great film told through action and emotion. It brings me back to my film school days watching old Charley Chaplin films and talking about production politics and film sequences. Go see this film. It’s a new experience for filmgoers of our modern era. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Tinker Tailer Soldier Spy (2011)

Written By Bridget O’conner & Peter Straughan, John le Carre (novel)
Starring Gary Oldman, Colin Firth and Tom Hardy
Directed By Tomas Alfredson

Who doesn’t love Gary Oldman? Really! He carries every character he plays with such confidence and zeal. I could watch this guy act for a lifetime. And so far I have.

Colin Firth is an interesting character also. He plays an aloof jackass but his character is likable which creates a confusing experience. He is possibly a genius or a tool but either way he can carry a role. Besides he was amazing in The King’s Speech… 

Frankly this was an all-star cast and a thriller novel with a following. It was going to be well receive no matter what. Maybe I am expecting to much but I felt like this was done poorly. It could have been done in a much more thrilling way. I love suspense, mystery, espionage, and even psychological thrills but this film didn’t seem to pick anything specific to enhance the story.  It was shot as a book in picture form.

I did enjoy the story but almost as if it was a commercial to read the book…

Bottom 5 rating. Not the greatest movie ever but it ends well. The problem is the characters are not fleshed out and the goal of the story is not really capitalized. I enjoyed the movie but it wasn’t British enough for me. It wasn’t compelling enough to invest emotionally. 

The Devil Inside (2012)

Directed by…
Written by…

I won’t waste your time...

Do Not Go See This… Do Not Rent This… its terrible. You will literally want your 120 minutes back. It's not scary, not interesting, not fun to make fun of…

Bottom 5 rating. This is a great reason to hate Hollywood with movies that waste your money and steal your time… Go see 'The Artist' instead. 

Friday, January 13, 2012

Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol

Written by Josh Appelbaum, Andre Namec, & Bruce Geller (Television Series)
Directed by Brad Bird
Starring tom Cruze, Jeremy Renner & Simon Pegg

If you liked the last three you’ll like this one. I’m a fan of Tom Cruze. His personal life is scrutinized and over analyzed to the point where there is nothing but speculation and so I stay way from that type of conjecture. But as an actor I think he’s an upfront, clean cut, leading man. He is wildly successful and he stars in almost every classic movie you can think of: Top Gun, Jerry Maguire, A Few Good Men, & Tropic Thunder… to name a few. Tom Cruze “Brings it” every time and this one it’s no different.

The film it’s self is kind of geared toward the original series of Mission: Impossible which sets it apart from the prequels. The Film, instead of focusing on Ethan Hunt’s (Cruze) struggle, focuses on the team’s impractical assignments and character arks as well as structure. It’s still Cruze running the show but it’s less motivated by his character and more on the severity of the situation.

I’m new to this director Brad Bird and from what I can tell he did a fine job. Nothing seemed out of place or confused. Having said that the final seen of this film is a bit cheesy and makes me think it was added on to appease some studio suit. The emotion of the character isn’t really there and the story doesn’t need a love interest after the resolution of the film. Other then that I thought Bird did a fine job.

No rating. I was entertained and happy. I’m a big fan of Tom Cruze so I need to wash my hands of this review. It’s really a phenomenon how much I like Cruze considering I like almost everything he does… even the film ‘night and day’…

Monday, January 9, 2012

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011)

Written by Arthur Conan Doyle (novels) Michele Mulroney, Kieran Mulroney
Starring Robert downy Jr., Jude Law, & Jared Harris
Directed by Guy Ritchie

Robert Downy Jr. is awesome as usual. Having said that, Downy takes a rather unique twist on the classic Holmes character. Something about the foolishness of Downy as a comedic actor comes off wrong when he plays Holmes. It’s as if Downy is just some classic gifted investigator just like the countless television sitcoms of the past few years. Sherlock Holmes should be more dignified and regal or at least that’s what I find missing in this film.

Jude Law is a fantastic actor. Just see 'the talented mr.ripley.' He plays Watson beautifully in this thriller but also seems to be missing something. It’s interesting to watch such a different take on these characters.

Guy Ritchie is one of my favorite directors. Lock Stock, Snatch, & RocknRolla are all classic films that display his exceptional directorial style. But Sherlock Holmes is an entirely different kind of movie for Ritchie. Its obvious he is trying to appeal to a more family friendly audience and looking to make an iconic film with well established stories and characters.

Guy Ritchie still brings a strong directors style to this film. He always keeps the audience guessing and keep the film moving at a fast pass. He keeps your attention while wowing you with interesting cinematic effect. But at times it becomes too stylized, dizzying and difficult to follow.

No rating. Its fun to watch Robert Downy Jr. dress up in masquerade but doesn’t always ring true to Sherlock Holmes. Jude law is awesome and has my full support in whatever he does. The whole thing is just too sexy and safe to be truly ground breaking. But I fully endorse renting ‘A Game of Shadow’ at least once.