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Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike are perfectly cast as husband and wife in this where is she thriller. He comes home one day to find his woman missing. As the film unfolds it appears more and more likely that he killed her and disposed of the body. Through series of flashbacks, we discover that all was not well in the marriage. I was completely caught up in the drama to see where it would end up. Unfortunately, the final half hour becomes rather silly with an unlikely character played by Neil Patrick Harris as a very wealthy man with an incredible house with elaborate cameras which leads to plot hole number one. The second one occurs in the next to last scene which I will not reveal in order not to have a spoiler alert. It will be on cop It will be obvious to any alert viewer. Even with the criticism, I would still recommend the movie.
The one reason to watch The Equalizer is Denzel Washington. He is Bob, a seemingly ordinary man working at a Home Depot type of store. Every night at 2am he visits an all night diner to drink tea and read classic novels. Here he meets a young prostitute, played well by the always good Chloe Grace Moretz. Of course, bad things eventually happen to the girl. Her pimps are Russian Mafia guys are the personification of evil. Denzel to the rescue over the next two hours. The action is standard stuff, which we have seen before, but Denzel makes it worthwhile. A bit too long at two hours and twelve minutes, with typical villains, it is nevertheless entertaining enough to recommend as a good night's distraction. A 7.5/10.
Jake Gylennhaal is Lou Bloom; a loner in the mold of Travis Buckle from Taxi Driver. He is a petty thief who steals in order to survive, and eventually gets the idea after witnessing a car fire where a freelance photographer is shooting the scene to sell to a TV news program, to do the same thing. He buys a camera and police scanner, and he is in business. His first shoot is a close up of a bleeding victim and is night by an ambitious news director played by Rene Russo. They develop a relationship which is advantageous to both. He gets better and better at shooting graphic footage for Russo to use on air. They are both completely amoral, and by the end of this film you despise the both of them. Jake's Lou is an extremely quirky character who spouts strange pearls of wisdom throughout. Russo is just as vicious, and will do anything necessary to survive. Nightcrawler is one of the ten best movies of 2014.
A homicide detective is driving along his merry way when he stops for a dog in the road. He then continues to drive and runs over a pedestrian. After checking out the victim, he discovers that he is dead. Thus begins this roller coaster ride in what only be described as Murphy's law; or whatever can go wrong, it will. The cop ventures on to his mother's wake in a most unusual and different manner that you have ever seen. A cover up using a creative and strange tactic makes for a funny moment in between some fairly brutal violence. The Korean police are more corrupt than I expected; surpassing our legendary NYPD for bribe taking. The plot is standard crime material, and the acting above average, making for a 7/10.
I am mystified by the high score for this movie. It starts off well enough when David shows up at the door of a suburban home and tells mommie dearest that he has just walked from the bus station and is delivering a promise to the family that their son loved them all very much, and Dave is delivering that message from the last moments of his life during combat in the Middle East. Of course, David happened to be his best friend in the military. Mom invites the stranger to stay at the house with her and hubby and teen son and hot blonde daughter. Strange and bad things happen to many people; some with severe violence. The first hour is silly but entertaining, nonetheless. The problem is the last twenty minutes or so where The Guest turns into an episode of the A Team. The acting is TV movie level and the ending pretty much ruins the whole thing.
Bill Murray is the main reason to watch St. Vincent. He is Vincent; a hard drinking, compulsive gambling, and cynical, foul mouthed son of bitch as you have ever seen. Along comes a neighbor with a little boy who is struggling as a single mother when their paths cross. Although predictable and overly sentimental, I was still able to get lost in the relationship between Vince and the kid. He takes him to a bar and race track and along the way teaches him to defend himself. Melissa McCarthy is sympathetic as the mom and Naomi Watts provides comic relief in her role as a Russian hooker. The writing is crisp and I love the use of Brooklyn, New York for its gritty backdrop. One of the ten best films of 2014.
This film has the look and feel of Tree of Life. Moments of beautiful imagery, mixed with numerous ponderous scenes for an overlong three hours, makes wonder why it wasn't edited better. Seventeen separate movies ranging from ten to fifteen minutes make up the one hundred and eighty minutes. The beach is a recurring theme throughout, with frequent narration with contemplative music in the background. The storyline is simply the harshness of everyday life, told with a realistic and mundane tone. There are no happy endings at anytime; just a gritty seriousness with very little humor thrown in, with the exception of Kate Blanchett and a swimming pool at Christmas. Otherwise, this is a long and depressing ride. The acting is superb, but the length is a definite drawback in what could have been a contender.
Two men from different cultures, a journalist investigating a corrupt rich man in Jakarta, and a banker turned serial killer from Tokyo meet in a chat room and form an unholy alliance. The Japanese man abducts and tortures women on camera and uploads them on to the internet. The Indonesian writer becomes fascinated by the videos, and through a series of events becomes a killer himself. The movie switches back and forth between the two characters in a fairly seamless fashion. The acting is excellent, with vivid camera work, but be warned of some explicit and bloody violence. It runs a bit too long at two hours and eighteen minutes, but I still recommend Killers as one of the better films of 2014.
This is sort of a remake of a 1976 film of the same title. A killer wearing a burlap hood kills couples making out in lovers lanes. Clips from the original movie are used throughout the 2014 version. A college age girl, played well by Addison Tomlin, is about to get her groove on with her boyfriend when the masked man appears and puts a quick end to the romantic evening. She escapes and transforms into Nancy Drew, super detective. Besides living with grandma, our young heroine does not seem to have a job. In lieu of employment, the lady assists the Texas and Arkansas Rangers in solving this mystery. Other than above average cinematography and a decent performance by Ms. Tomlin in the lead, a silly ending ruins The Town that Dreaded Sundown.
This is a wild ride of a movie. Patrick Wilson is a high strung limo driver who, due to gambling losses, owes $6000 to some very mean bookies who promise great physical violence if they are not paid their money. Wilson encounters David Hasselhoff in an early scene where the Hoff plays himself and shows some unexpected comedy chops. The same applies to Ray Liotta in a cameo where he asks the driver what movies has Hasselhoff appeared in. Chris Pine is an eccentric rich guy who puts Reedus through hell in order to earn the six grand in order to pay off his debt. Pine and Wilson have excellent timing in their screen time together. The story is a bit uneven, but overall I was entertained by Stretch and score it between a 6 and a seven.
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