Anna Karenina (2012) Rated R

Russian aristocrat Anna Karenina begins an affair with Count Alexei Vronsky. Based on the novel by Leo Tolstoy. Starring Matthew Macfadyen, Eric MacLennan, Kelly Macdonald, Keira Knightley, Jude Law, Domhnall Gleeson, Alicia Vikander, Aaron Taylor-Johnson.

I don’t know who decided to film this movie in a theater; the entire movie takes place inside a theater, and I can’t say it was the best decision. The film has beautiful cinematography and great direction, but it is quite confusing. There is something lost in the telling of the story with all of the changing of screens (due to it being held in a theater) that creates a disconnect with the viewer. Unfortunately, it is a pass.

 

 

Posted in 2012, Based on a novel, Drama, films, Movie reviews, movies, Rated R, reviews, Romance | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Passengers (2016) Rated PG-13

A spacecraft traveling 90 years to colonize a distant planet malfunctions, waking two of the sleeping passengers. Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Chris Pratt, Michael Sheen, Laurence Fishburne, Andy Garcia.

The film was passable. I didn’t find anything exceptional or unique about this movie to commend it. It felt like every other film featuring two hot actors aboard a “sinking” ship.  I also felt there were too many parts that didn’t make sense or were out of place in the film.  Finally, the ending was a disappointment. Instead of giving us a seemingly open ending which actually left no question as to the outcome, I wish they had spent more time exploring what happened to both the two main characters, as well as the rest of the passengers aboard the ship.  This film is a pass.

Editor’s Comment:  Surprisingly, I completely disagree with Laura.  I was riveted to this film throughout, wondering and worrying about how things would turn out.  Yes, there are the token “hot actors,” but I was actually very impressed with Pratt.  He has great, understated comedic timing which added a lightness to an otherwise desperate situation.  Also, the film posed a lot of questions that I found myself pondering even after the movie was over.  The more I thought through the ramifications of the movie and how precisely the story had to be told in order to unfold like it did, the more I appreciated the attention to detail that went into making it.  I say this movie is worth a watch.

I know Laura and I would both love to hear what you thought; be sure to let us know who you agree with in the comments below.

 

Posted in 2016, Adventure, Drama, films, Movie reviews, movies, Rated PG-13, reviews, Romance, Sci-fi | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Killing Kennedy (2013) Rated NR

Based on Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard’s book on the assassination of President Kennedy. Starring Rob Lowe, Will Rothhaar, Jack Noseworthy, Michelle Trachtenberg, Ginnifer Goodwin.

Although this film doesn’t give us any new information about the “Killing of Kennedy,” it does a good job of telling the story. Since I wasn’t alive when it happened, I was particularly interested in the details about Lee Harvey Oswald’s life and what motivated him to kill the President.  Lowe and Goodwin did a fine job playing the first couple, but it was Trachtenberg whom I thought stole the show. She was unrecognizable in her role as Marina Oswald. As a film that focused on the truth surrounding this piece of history instead of highlighting the abounding number of conspiracy theories surrounding it, I definitely say this one is worth a watch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in 2013, Drama, films, Movie reviews, movies, Rated NR, reviews, Thrillers | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New This Week on DVD, March 28, 2017

 20th Century Women (R)

The story of three women who explore love and freedom in Southern California during the late 1970s. Starring Annette Bening, Elle Fanning, Greta Gerwig, Billy Crudup

 Arsenal (R)

A Southern mobster attempts to rescue his kidnapped brother. Starring Nicolas Cage, John Cusack, Adrian Grenier, Johnathon Schaech

 Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (PG-13)

The adventures of writer Newt Scamander in New York’s secret community of witches and wizards seventy years before Harry Potter reads his book in school. Starring Eddie Redmayne, Sam Redford, Scott Goldman, Colin Farrell

 A Monster Calls (PG-13)

A boy seeks the help of a tree monster to cope with his single mother’s terminal illness. Starring Lewis MacDougall, Sigourney Weaver, Felicity Jones

 Patriots Day (R)

The story of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing and the aftermath, which includes the city-wide manhunt to find the terrorists responsible. Starring Mark Wahlberg, Dicky Eklund Jr., Michael Marchand, John Goodman

 Silence (R)

In the 17th century, two Portuguese Jesuit priests travel to Japan in an attempt to locate their mentor, who is rumored to have committed apostasy, and to propagate Catholicism. Starring Andrew Garfield, Adam Driver, Liam Neeson

 A Tale of Love and Darkness (PG-13)

The story of Amos Oz’s youth, set against the backdrop of the end of the British Mandate for Palestine and the early years of the State of Israel. The film details the young man’s relationship with his mother and his beginnings as a writer, while looking at what happens when the stories we tell become the stories we live. Starring Natalie Portman, Tomer Kapon, Shira Haas

 Why Him? (R)

A holiday gathering threatens to go off the rails when Ned Fleming realizes that his daughter’s Silicon Valley millionaire boyfriend is about to pop the question. Starring Zoey Deutch, James Franco, Tangie Ambrose, Cedric the Entertainer, Bryan Cranston, Megan Mullally

Synopsis by IMDB.

Posted in 2017, DVDS, films, Lists, movies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chasing Mavericks (2012) Rated PG

Jay Moriarity discovers the Mavericks surf break, one of the biggest waves on Earth, is just down the road from where he lives, so he hires Frosty Hesson to train him. Starring Gerard Butler, Jonny Weston, Elisabeth Shue

I rather enjoyed this film. It’s a great clean story about a young man who wants to make his dream of riding the Maverick. The film does remind me of the Karate Kid films. It’s a great mentor/mentee relationship film. The story tells the true story of Jay Moriarity training to riding the Maverick. The film seems surreal but I think that the surfers that ride these wild waves do train like crazy for the waves. It is pushing your body to the extreme. This film is extreme and worth watching.

 

Posted in 2012, Based on a true story, Biography, Drama, films, Movie reviews, movies, Rated PG, reviews, Sport | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Manchester by the Sea (2016) Rated R

An uncle returns home to care for his nephew after his brother dies. Starring  Casey Affleck, Ben O’Brien, Kyle Chandler

This film is not spectacular drama but it is a great story. We have two brothers both of whom had struggles in their lives. Then one of the passes away and we have the one brother trying to over come his grief and guilt over the past. It’s a beautiful story. It’s a sad story. It has some dark comedy that made me laugh, as the characters grieve and try to move on in life. I would have liked a more positive ending but what can you do when life doesn’t always sweeten with sugar after giving lemons. This film is worth a watch.

 

Posted in 2016, Drama, films, Movie reviews, movies, Rated R, reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hacksaw Ridge (2016) Rated R

WWII American Army Medic Desmond T. Doss, one of the first conscientious objector who earned Medal of Honor during the Battle of Okinawa. Starring Andrew Garfield, Richard Pyros, Jacob Warner, Hugo Weaving

Hacksaw Ridge highlights the battle where Pfc. Doss earned the Medal of Honor for the lives he saved.  The film covers Doss’ decision to enlist and his training. The film brilliantly covered his decision to be a conscientious objector but still wanting to serve his country. It showed what his decision did for the company that he was apart of. What this man did to hold onto his faith is astonishing. Then you have the God giving strength and courage to do what he had to do for the job that he is given . It’s amazing. Mel Gibson takes us to war and shows us the brutality of it. The film is an honest look at Doss’ Battle of Okinawa. The film is worth a watch.

 

Posted in 2016, Based on a true story, Biography, Drama, films, historical, Movie reviews, movies, Rated R, reviews, war | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Tom Hardy

 Inception (2010) Rated R

A thief, who steals corporate secrets through use of dream-sharing technology, is given the inverse task of planting an idea into the mind of a CEO.

 Band of Brothers (2001) Rated TV-MA

The story of Easy Company of the US Army 101st Airborne division and their mission in WWII Europe from Operation Overlord through V-J Day.

 The Dark Knight Rises (2012) Rated PG-13

Eight years after the Joker’s reign of anarchy, the Dark Knight, with the help of the enigmatic Selina, is forced from his imposed exile to save Gotham City, now on the edge of total annihilation, from the brutal guerrilla terrorist Bane.

 Lawless (2012) Rated R

Set in Depression-era Franklin County, Virginia, a trio of bootlegging brothers are threatened by a new special deputy and other authorities angling for a cut of their profits.

 This Means War (2012) Rated PG-13

Two top CIA operatives wage an epic battle against one another after they discover they are dating the same woman.

Synopsis by IMDB.

Posted in 2017, Actors, films, Lists, movies, Top Films... | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New This Week in Theaters, March 23, 2017

 Wilson (R)
Opens on Friday, March 24
Starring: Judy Greer, Woody Harrelson, Laura Dern

A lonely, neurotic and hilariously honest middle-aged man reunites with his estranged wife and meets his teenage daughter for the first time.

 Life (R)
Opens on Friday, March 24
Starring: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rebecca Ferguson, Olga Dihovichnaya

An international space crew discovers life on Mars.

 Power Rangers (PG-13)
Opens on Friday, March 24
Starring: Elizabeth Banks, Bryan Cranston, Sarah Grey

A group of high-school kids, who are infused with unique superpowers, harness their abilities in order to save the world.

 CHIPS (R)
Opens on Friday, March 24
Starring: Michael Peña, Dax Shepard, Jessica McNamee, Adam Brody

The adventures of two California Highway Patrol motorcycle officers as they make their rounds on the freeways of Los Angeles.

 Prevenge (NR)
Opens on Friday, March 24
Starring: Gemma Whelan, Jo Hartley, Kate Dickie, Alice Lowe

Widow Ruth is seven months pregnant when, believing herself to be guided by her unborn baby, she embarks on a homicidal rampage, dispatching anyone who stands in her way.

 The Levelling (R)
Opens on Friday, March 24
Starring: Ellie Kendrick, David Troughton, Jack Holden, Joe Blakemore

After he brother dies, Clover returns to her family farm in Someset, where she discovers her estranged father is a shell of his former self and the farm is in shambles due to floods that destroyed the area six months earlier.

 Slamma Jamma (PG)
Opens on Friday, March 24
Starring: Chris Staples, Michael Irvin, Jose Canseco, Ryan Gunnarson

Wrongfully accused and sent to prison, a former basketball star prepares for the national slam dunk competition while finding redemption in himself and in those he loves.

Synopsis by IMDB.

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Hugh Jackman

 The Prestige (2006) Rated PG-13

Two stage magicians engage in competitive one-upmanship in an attempt to create the ultimate stage illusion.

 Prisoners (2013) Rated R

When Keller Dover’s daughter and her friend go missing, he takes matters into his own hands as the police pursue multiple leads and the pressure mounts. But just how far will this desperate father go to protect his family?

 Drive (2011) Rated R

A mysterious Hollywood stuntman and mechanic moonlights as a getaway driver and finds himself in trouble when he helps out his neighbor.

 Les Misérables (2012) Rated PG-13

In 19th-century France, Jean Valjean, who for decades has been hunted by the ruthless policeman Javert after breaking parole, agrees to care for a factory worker’s daughter. The decision changes their lives forever.

 X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009) Rated PG-13

A look at Wolverine’s early life, in particular his time with the government squad Team X and the impact it will have on his later years.

Synopsis by IMDB.

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