Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides Film Review

This is going to be a short review while I cool down from Hangover Pt II rant. So here come the magical bullet points!

  • Entertaining
  • Too long
  • Stop shoehorning in love stories. Especially 2/3rds into the film
  • Mermaids are hot and deadly but aren’t most chicks?
  • Johnny Depp and Geoffery Rush are incredible here as was Ian McShane because well, Ian McShane is the man!
  • Penelope Cruz is purty
  • So was the mermaid chick
  • I fell asleep during bits of it

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The Hangover Part II Film Review

This review will be short because my hands will fall off if I get on a complete rant. I will state this: The Hangover Part II may not only be the worst film I’ve seen halfway into 2011 but the worst film I’ve seen in the last five to ten years. The sequel that had no setup from the first one proves throughout it is merely a cash grab. Not only does it constantly show you the finger for paying for it, it does so in such a cynical and cruel manner I was actually angry when I left the theater.

The Hangover somehow has a place in a lot of people’s hearts. In truth, I’ve always fel the film was incredibly weak when compared to Todd Phillips’ first major breakthrough film Old School. Was The Hangover funny? Certainly. Yet I cannot consistently laugh at the film like I can with Old School. The first film didn’t do anything to warrant a sequel except earn income…

So here we are America, the movie apparently you all asked for. If you want to know exactly how the film plays out, watch the first film. There is nothing new here except the back drop of Thailand replete with obvious jokes about Bangkok and lady-boys. The film reduces Alan (Zach Galafanakis) to a mentally challenged man-child (the film goes so far as to show his “mind” as a fat child). It’s cruel, it’s stupid, and uninspired. For fuck’s sake the film pretty much ends the exact same damned way as the first.

So congratulations to Todd Phillips and all involved for taking your first film, flipping it over, fucking it, then giving it a middle finger. Yet of course this piece of trash made money so guess what? We get to have The Hangover Part III in a couple years. Fuck Hollywood…

I hold this work to be original thought. If I have used copyrighted material please email me. I will bring it down immediately. I merely mean for this blog to be a means to discuss and dissect my favorite things.

Thor Film Review

Okay, I am truly failing to update this blog. Shameful, I know. Since 5 people in the world read it and 1000 people spam me, I’m okay with that.. Here we go with another lazy Friday bullet pointed review of Thor.

  • The film is largely a great success. I had deep reservations about how the sometimes goofy character of Thor could fit in with the way Marvel has been presenting their heroes. My concern was the “realism” of The Incredible Hulk and Iron Man would be lost once you introduced a Norse god. Envisioning Asgard as an alien planet was a good call and helped to suspend disbelief
  • Chris Hemsworth was well cast. He did a good job of playing up Thor’s arrogance and lack of control and then his humility
  • Tom Hiddleston as Loki was a casting stroke of brilliance. The man plays the cunning and violent weasel really well. It’s definitely encouraging to know he’ll be a part of The Avengers.
  • The film has a great setup for next years The Avengers after the credits roll.
  • Some of the costuming was goofy but given the nature of Thor’s characters it’s to be expected. The film envisions Asgard well enough to make some of the shiny cheesiness dissipate
  • I wish Kat Dennings had more to do in the film then comment on her lost iPod. She is too beautiful and talented to waste like this…
  • The film had good call outs to the other Avengers

I hold this work to be original thought. If I have used copyrighted material please email me. I will bring it down immediately. I merely mean for this blog to be a means to discuss and dissect my favorite things.

103 Days?!

Holy moly have I fallen behind on the whole “blogging” thing. I’m being told that it has been 103 days since my last film review. I’ve seen several films in that time and now it is sadly too late to give them full and detailed reviews. So I am going to have to just throw very generic, unprofessional, and poorly written reactions to many films I’ve seen over the past four months. Here goes nothing.

The Green Hornet

  • Entertaining
  • Seth Rogen didn’t ruin the film like so many Internet haters thought he would
  • Cameron Diaz is starting to age. That is a great but inevitable tragedy of us all
  • There were some genuine laughs and decent action scenes
  • Chrisoph Waltz is a good actor if you want a villian

Battle: Los Angeles

  • Awful, cheap, and loud
  • Aaron Eckhart should fire his agent as should Michelle Rodriguez
  • The alien design looked as though someone threw up in a junkyard. Terrible
  • Just because you are filming from the “perspective” of soldiers doesn’t mean your camera work has to be erratic and nausea-inducing. Show some damned restraint
  • I didn’t even hear half of the character’s names

Paul

  • Super funny. I will always love Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. They truly demonstrated a love of American Science Fiction films. There are so many geeky references in the film I will be watching it again on Blu Ray just to see what I missed
  • Seth Rogen did awesome voice work
  • The CGI wasn’t horrible
  • Aliens cursing and smoking may be low-brow, but it’s FUNNY
  • Sometimes, you just need a movie that isn’t trying to be anything more than what it is

Source Code

  • Astonishing and nearly masterful follow up for Duncan Jone’s after Moon.
  • Takes a silly premise but introduces and expands on it in an engaging way that  eases the viewer towards suspension of disbelief
  • Strong human story driven by character action and not plot points
  • Excellent performances from the cast
  • So far has a place in the top ten films of 2011. Best film I’ve personally seen so far this year
  • When given the right director and script, Jake Gyllenhaal can indeed act.
  • Michelle Monghanan is pretty

Your Highness

  • I laughed, a lot
  • Film critics need to get their heads out of their asses. Sometimes, a stoner comedy is just a stoner comedy. It doesn’t have to be an Oscar contender
  • You will be astonished at the mileage gotten out of a Minotaur’s penis
  • Natalie Portman is so beautiful it’s cruel to know she’s pregnant
  • If you come into the movie without pretension, you too shall laugh heartily.

Scream 4 (or Scre4m if you want to use the stupid marketing)

  • Paid decent enough homage to the original
  • Don’t think this is going to do well at the Box Office
  • Allison Brie is smoking hot and had incredible cleavage in the film. She is giving Scarlett Johanssen and Natalie Portman a run for their money in terms of most gorgeous Jewish actress in Hollywood.
  • Neve Campbell didn’t look too beat up
  • Courtney Cox almost appeared plastic, like they used CGI to cover up her age
  • Some of the kills were lame
  • The movie takes a trip to Absurdville as it winds down

That’s all I can say for now folks. I’ll try to do better in the future about keeping this blog up to date.

I hold this work to be original thought. If I have used copyrighted material please email me. I will bring it down immediately. I merely mean for this blog to be a means to discuss and dissect my favorite things.

Ten Films I WISH I Saw in 2010

2010 was a big let down in some ways. I missed a lot of great films for various reasons. Here is a list:

  1. Winter’s Bone
  2. Restrepo
  3. Dogtooth
  4. 127 Hours
  5. Never Let Me Go
  6. The Town
  7. The Fighter
  8. Tangled
  9. Black Swan
  10. Blue Valentine

I hold this work to be original thought. If I have used copyrighted material please email me. I will bring it down immediately. I merely mean for this blog to be a means to discuss and dissect my favorite things.

Top Ten Films I Saw in 2010

Holy schnieke, it’s been 64 days since my last update! What a bloody slacker.I didn’t get to see as many movies this year as I would have liked. Most of what I saw was a bit of a let down and some movies I think I saw I didn’t review… Just a lot of things happened this past year to distract me from writing good and timely reviews…

 I’ll be formulating my review for the excellent True Grit shortly but for now, here is a list, in no particular order, of the best films I got to see this year:

  1. The Social Network
  2. Toy Story 3
  3. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World
  4. Up in the Air
  5. Inception
  6. Kick Ass
  7. Fair Game
  8. How to Train Your Dragon
  9. Iron Man 2
  10. Shutter Island

That was a a difficult list to compile but there ya go.

I hold this work to be original thought. If I have used copyrighted material please email me. I will bring it down immediately. I merely mean for this blog to be a means to discuss and dissect my favorite things.

The Social Network review

Wow, I have gotten horrifically behind on my writing. It’s time for another “I sort of remember enough of the movie to be fair about my opinions on it” bullet-point laden review. This time around, I will be giving a disservice to the great film The Social Network. This is the much-hyped, “Facebook Movie”. It is a dialogue-driven character study of Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s 26-year old founder. In the movie, Zuckerberg is played by a self-absorbed Jesse Eisenberg in a great turn as a person too smart for those around him.

  • The movie is really three separate stories about the creation of Facebook. None of which seem to be the “true” story. Do NOT enter this film thinking the portrayal of the people involved is true or accurate. These are stories and hearsay merged with dramatic storytelling
  • The beauty of The Social Network is in its look at friendship. Zuckerberg is a person with a core group of friends but wanting something, “significant” to happen in his life. When he creates Facebook (or is accused of stealing the idea), movie Zuckerberg begins to burn the bridges of those closet to him. The irony of the film is that Zuckerberg creates a refined way to be involved in the lives of friends while simultaneously isolating his own.
  • Another interesting portion of the film is how the film tackles the challenges of entrepreneurship. It shows how the Facebook team financed and tried to reach out to get seed money necessary to keep things active.
  • Justin Timberlake can act. I know… I was shocked too
  • Brenda Song is gorgeous and plays a pyscho girlfriend really well
  • Trent Reznor did the soundtrack with Atticus Finch and it’s great
  • The Social Network will win Academy Awards and Oscars
  • Forget your expectations. This is a story about friendship, wealth, youth, and betrayal all rolled into one. The dialogue is snappy if sometimes verbose. The acting is convincing. There is even some dark humor to be found
  • The film is not a completely fair portrayal of Mark Zuckerberg. Also, the film depicts college women as one of two things: sex objects or so cruel they force the invention of a world-changing idea. The writer of The Social Network,  Aaron Sorkin has tried to defend this but his defense rings hollow to me. I don’t think the movie is inherently sexist as some attest but it definitely lacked any multi-dimensional female characters. However, feminists need to take a chill-pill because the founding of Facebook was started by nerds who probably had a lot of trouble with girls until they found one that was special (which Mark Zuckerberg has as he has a long-time girlfriend in real life)

I hold this work to be original thought. If I have used copyrighted material please email me. I will bring it down immediately. I merely mean for this blog to be a means to discuss and dissect my favorite things.

Scott Pilgrim vs the World

I’ve been meaning to write about this film for a long time. I apologize that this will be a very lazy review. Going to go to bullet points for this one:

  • The movie is AWESOME
  • Michael Cera does just fine
  • Everyone who grew up on video games owes themselves to see this film
  • Kiran Culkin stole the damn show.
  • Seriously, the movie is great
  • Only flaw is that Scott Pilgrim (the character) is a dick and his infatuation with the “girl of his dreams” isn’t that believable.
  • Whatever, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is a great film. Probably one of the strongest of the summer

I hold this work to be original thought. If I have used copyrighted material please email me. I will bring it down immediately. I merely mean for this blog to be a means to discuss and dissect my favorite things.

Inception Movie Review

My other most anticipated film of the summer finally came out this weekend. Christopher Nolan’s Inception, like Toy Story 3, salvages a very disappointing summer movie season. To see a major studio tentpole film like this is the reason why I love movies. Kudos to Warner Bros. for rewarding Nolan’s The Dark Knight success with a cart blanche ticket to craft this amazing film. Whilst many films have delved into the nature of dreams, no film has done what Inception has. Inception takes concepts of time, physics, and sleep and takes them to places I’ve personally not seen.

The rules of the dreamworld that the characters create in Inception are spelled out early and often. Perhaps the biggest flaw of the film is that it continues to tell us the rules rather than show us the rules. There is a scene where Leonardo DiCaprio’s character (the protagonist Cobb) explicitly explains to Ariadne (the lovely Ellen Page) not to mess with the dream’s architecture she built nor build with her memories as she runs the risk of making the mind aware it’s dreaming. All the while Cobb explains this the projections of his dreams (the extras) begin to get violent. I felt this scene could have used less dialogue. It would have been much more jarring to see the dream turn violent and have Ariadne awaken in shock, learning her lessons the hard way.

No film can ever be perfect. The incredible ambition of Inception could never really be perfected. In spite of my minor quibble illustrated above, I absolutely adored this film. There was not one moment in its runtime I was not engaged or intrigued. When Ariadne begins to experiment with the physics of the dreamworld she’s training in with Cobb, the inverting and twisting city-scape is an incredible visual feast. Nolan has masterfully played with the notion of physics within this film.

The central conceit and titular idea of the film is astounding. The concept of instilling an idea into someone so that they feel the idea was naturally their own rather than a suggestion is an amazingly powerful thing to ponder. I wish Inception would have done more to examine the morality of such an endeavor but the action set-pieces were so thoughtful and engaging that I was rooting for the cast of characters anyway.

As far as the action set pieces go, they are some of the most engaging and original I’ve seen in a sci-fi film since The Matrix. The scenes where Joseph Gordon-Levitt is battling projections in a dream that has lost gravity were incredibly well done. Seriously some of the most visually interesting fight scenes Nolan has ever directed. The cinematography of Inception was also top-notch.

There are tons of layers to this film, both literal and figurative. I didn’t want to spoil too much in this film. I’ve left a lot of detail out of this review. The cast turns out excellent performances all around. The film generally strays away from holding the audiences hands which is a rare feat these days. The film is a brave cry to Hollywood that thought-provoking films can also be major summer tentpoles. Inception is another feather in Christopher Nolan’s well stocked cap. Now if the man can complete his Batman trilogy unscathed by studio meddling the world will be a better place. I’ll be seeing Inception again in the future for sure. I highly recommend this to anyone who wants to see something unique and engaging this summer.

I hold this work to be original thought. If I have used copyrighted material please email me. I will bring it down immediately. I merely mean for this blog to be a means to discuss and dissect my favorite things.