101 Dalmatians (1996) Rated G

Live-action film to the story of 101 Dalmatians written by Dodie Smith. Starring Glenn Close, Jeff Daniels, Joely Richardson, Joan Plowright, Hugh Laurie.

This live-action film is based on the book and the 1961 animated film by the same name. All of the actors recreate their roles from the children’s book wonderfully. Close was in her element as Cruella de Vil, and Daniels and Richardson were convincing in their affection for both each other and their dogs. Although the scenes with real Dalmatians were fun to watch, the minute they started talking, I lost interest. I’ve never been fond of talking animals in films; it doesn’t happen too much in this movie, but it still bothered me, as did the mechanical pets. Still, this film is delightful overall and worth a watch.

 

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A Cure for Wellness (2016) Rated R

A young executive is sent to a wellness center in the Swiss Alps to retrieve his company’s CEO and return to New York. Starring Dane DeHaan, Jason Isaacs, Mia Goth.

This thriller explores questions regarding the cure for wellness. The young executive arrives, wishing to make a good impression at the wellness center where his CEO is staying, in hopes of bringing him back to the States. However, during his visit, he finds that the center isn’t at all what he expected. This film keeps you on your toes, trying to figure out if he is simply imagining what he sees and feels, if he is losing his mind, or if it is all real. They expect to keep you guessing until the end, but I figured it out early and did not find the ending to be shocking. This film failed to impress me; it is a pass.  *Note: This film does include nudity.

 

Posted in 2016, Drama, fantasy, films, horror, Movie reviews, movies, Mysteries, Rated R, reviews, Sci-fi, Thrillers | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New This Week on DVD, June 27, 2017

 Absolutely Anything (R)

A group of eccentric aliens confer a human being with the power to do absolutely anything, as an experiment. Starring Simon Pegg, Kate Beckinsale, Sanjeev Bhaskar, Rob Riggle, Eddie Izzard, Robin Williams, John Cleese

 The Autopsy of Jane Doe (R)

A father and son, both coroners, are pulled into a complex mystery while attempting to identify the body of a young woman, who was apparently harboring dark secrets. Starring Brian Cox, Emile Hirsch, Ophelia Lovibond

 The Belko Experiment (R)

In a twisted social experiment, 80 Americans are locked in their high-rise corporate office in Bogotá, Colombia and ordered by an unknown voice coming from the company’s intercom system to participate in a deadly game of kill or be killed. Starring John Gallagher Jr., Tony Goldwyn, Adria Arjona, John C. McGinley, Owain Yeoman

 CHiPs (R)

A rookie officer is teamed with a hardened pro at the California Highway Patrol, though the newbie soon learns his partner is really an undercover Fed investigating a heist that may involve some crooked cops. Starring Michael Peña, Dax Shepard, Vincent D’Onofrio, Adam Brody, Jane Kaczmarek

 Grey Lady (R)

A Boston police officer goes to Nantucket to investigate the murder of his partner, but he finds more than he bargained for. Starring Eric Dane, Natalie Zea, Amy Madigan, Rebecca Gayheart

 Money (R)

Two wealthy businessmen are about to get away with $5 million in ill-gotten money until their plans are revealed by an uninvited house guest. Starring Jesse Williams, Kellan Lutz, Jess Weixler, Jamie Bamber

 Power Rangers (PG-13)

A group of high-school students, who are infused with unique superpowers, harness their abilities in order to save the world. Starring Dacre Montgomery, Naomi Scott, RJ Cyler, Elizabeth Banks, Bryan Cranston, Bill Hader

 T2: Trainspotting (R)

After 20 years abroad, Mark Renton returns to Scotland and reunites with his old friends Sick Boy, Spud, and Begbie. Starring Ewan McGregor, Logan Gillies, Ben Skelton, Robert Carlyle

 Dirty Dancing: Televison Special (TV-PG)

A musical re-imagining of the 1987 film, Dirty Dancing. Starring Abigail Breslin, Sarah Hyland, Colt Prattes, Nicole Scherzinger, Katey Sagal

Synopsis by IMDB.

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35 Shots of Rum (2008) Rated UR

A relationship between a father and daughter changes after the daughter meets a young man. Starring Alex Descas, Mati Diop, Nicole Dogué.

This film follows the intricacies of life and how there are stages to each aspect of life. Here we have a father and daughter who both depend on each other but come to terms with life’s changes and let each other go. Although visually beautiful, this film is slow at times, and it fails to sufficiently explain why and what the characters are feeling. Even without a strong story line, the characters themselves are compelling, but not enough to make it worth a watch. This film is a pass.

 

 

Posted in 2008, Drama, films, French Film, Movie reviews, movies, Rated UR, reviews | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

World of Dance (NBC) Rated NR

Dancers perform in front of a panel of judges to compete for a million dollars and the title of best in the world. Starring  Jenna Dewan Tatum, Derek Hough, Jennifer Lopez, Ne-Yo

This reality show brings the best of the best to perform in front of three judges to decide whether they are the best in the world. There is multiple groups in different categories that perform. There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to who performs when or how many in each group performs. Then you’ve got the three judges all of whom work in the world of dance but what criteria do they really have in judging all these people from different dance backgrounds. They aren’t all schooled in the techniques of the different dance. This show is mainly another way for dancers to showcase their projects, maybe become famous, or maybe win some money. There is no significance to the show other than that, we don’t see them weeding out the people who think they are the best dancers, we don’t see any bad performances. Just performances that the judges don’t think is worth being on the show. This program isn’t worth the watch.

 

Posted in 2017, Rated NR, reality tv, reviews, Tv shows | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

After All These Years (2013) Rated NR

A woman is wrongfully accused of murdering her ex-husband. She sets out to find the real killer before she is arrested on the day of his funeral. Starring Wendie Malick, Andrea Martin, Martha Burns.

This Hallmark movie has a perfect blend of humor and mystery. They keep the suspense by not revealing too many hints about whodunit. However, the humor didn’t always fit with the inherently heavy theme. This wife just lost her husband, and in the process found out that he was planning to divorce her. It is not realistic to think she would find much to laugh at in life. The film fails to touch on the logical emotions of grief and devastation. Although it has some good qualities, this lack of emotional insight makes it a pass.

 

 

 

Posted in 2013, Canadian Films, films, hallmark movies, Movie reviews, movies, Mysteries, Rated NR, reviews, Thrillers | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Young Guns (1988) Rated R

A group of young men, lead by Billy the Kid, hunt down the killers of the rancher who was their benefactor. Starring Emilio Estevez, Kiefer Sutherland, Lou Diamond Phillips, Charlie Sheen, Dermot Mulroney, Jack Palance, Terry O’Quinn.

Young Guns tells the story of Billy the Kid during his time with The Regulators and during the Lincoln County War. I don’t know how historically correct the film is, though.  I think they may have stayed pretty true to his character but took some liberties with the supporting cast. What interested me most was watching the interactions between Sheen and Estevez, knowing that they are brothers in real life. It was fun to see how their characters butted heads on-screen.  Also, I thought Estevez captured the charismatic presence that Billy the Kid had. Entertaining: yes.  Historically accurate: not so much. The latter makes this a pass.

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New This Week in Theaters, June 22, 2017

 Transformers: The Last Knight (PG-13)
Opens on Friday, June 23
Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Josh Duhamel, Anthony Hopkins

Humans and Transformers are at war, Optimus Prime is gone. The key to saving our future lies buried in the secrets of the past, in the hidden history of Transformers on Earth.

 The Big Sick (R)
Opens on Friday, June 23
Starring: Kumail Nanjiani, Zoe Kazan, Holly Hunter, Ray Romano

A couple deals with their cultural differences as their relationship grows.

 The Beguiled (R)
Opens on Friday, June 23
Starring: Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst, Elle Fanning, Colin Farrell

At a girls’ school in Virginia during the Civil War, where the young women have been sheltered from the outside world, a wounded Union soldier is taken in. Soon, the house is taken over with sexual tension, rivalries, and an unexpected turn of events.

 The Bad Batch (R)
Opens on Friday, June 23
Starring: Suki Waterhouse, Jason Momoa, Jayda Fink, Keanu Reeves

A dystopian love story in a Texas wasteland and set in a community of cannibals.

Synopsis by IMDB.

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127 Hours (2010) Rated R

A mountain climber gets trapped and must resort to desperate measures to survive. Based on the book, Between a Rock and a Hard Place by  Aron Ralston. Starring James Franco, Kate Mara, Amber Tamblyn, Treat Williams.

This film is intense! Franco is compelling as the man who goes hiking on his own and becomes trapped. You can feel his pain, mental anguish, and desperation as he tries to survive. I was horrified and riveted right up to the end. If you like watching stories of human nature under duress, this is the film for you. It is worth a watch.

Posted in 2010, Adventure, Based on a true story, Biography, Drama, films, Movie reviews, movies, Rated R, reviews, Thrillers | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Summer Snow (2014) Rated NR

A family still grieving the loss of their wife and mother learns how to continue on. Starring Rachel Eggleston,  David Chisum, Cameron Goodman.

I keep hoping that these Christian film will succeed in their writing and production, but I am constantly disappointed, and this movie was no exception. It is one of the worst written Christian films I’ve seen, with an inconsistent and incomplete story line. The story itself is good, as we see these grieving family members each receive a personal letter from their wife/mother reminding them what is truly important in life. The gospel is clearly presented, which I appreciate, but the movie’s story is not. We never find out why or how she died, and there is a gaping hole in the conclusion with regards to the youngest daughter’s attempt to raise money to help another child. More thought needed to go into this script; it is a disappointment and a pass.

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