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Get Hard (2015)
Idiocracy About Getting In Shape for Prison Rape
A Gross-Out, Un-PC, Picture Teaming Two Popular Comedians that Wants You to Believe that it is an Equal Opportunity Offender. It is Offensive but Not Really Equally Offensive.
Compare the Time Spent and the Opposing Manipulation of the Two "Hard" Gangs that Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart Visit Attempting to Get Ferrill in Shape to Do Hard Time.
The Black Gang has a Full and Fleshed Out Ensemble of Likable "Homeys" and the White Supremacist-Neo-Nazi Biker Gang are Unlikeable and Played Nasty Straight and Want Nothing to Do With This and are About Sand Ferrell's Face Off with a Spinning Motorcycle Tire When Hart Shows Up with a Flame-Thrower.
The Movie is Clearly Not On the Side of the White Guys. There are Other Examples of Reverse Racism but No Need to Go Into It to Make the Point Because in a Thing Like This What's the Point.
If You are a Fan of the Two Stars or Think That Homosexual Rape is Hilarious, You Might Want to Give This a Shot to See the Lengths that Our White Turned Black Hero Endures to Not Be on the Receiving End of Hard Hot Shot.
The Film Tries Hard to be Charming with Its Two Leads Effortlessly Displaying One Cringe Inducer After Another. To its Credit there is Not One Fart Joke. That's Probably Because for Most of the Running Time Ferrill has Put Something In His Butt. How's That for a Complement.
Danny Collins (2015)
Imagine Film as Inspiration
Al Pacino Struck All the Right Chords in this Peppy Sentimental Tale. This Along with the Recent "The Humbling" (2014) is Making Everyone Talky (again) About the Talented Actor "Nailing It".
He Along with the Also Talented Cast of Annette Bening, Christopher Plummer, Bobby Cannavale, and the Charming and Spirited Giselle Eisenberg, as a Child Named Appropriately "Hope" Dealing with a "I can't stop talking!" Personality.
The "Small" Role of the Child Actually is Used for Many of Pacino's More Quiet Return to the Feeling's He is Desperately Attempting to Get Back in Touch With and May Be the Heart of the Charm of This Winning, but Familiar and Predictable Tale of a Troubled and Successful Singer Riding the Adoration of His Fans While Abandoning and Escaping Reality that His Time has Come and Gone and He has Nothing to Replace it with.
This is a Quality and Enjoyable Philosophical Picture with a Message that Never Goes Beyond What is Necessary to Keep the Cringes Away. A Winner by Any Measure of Movie Making and is a Good Example of What Hollywood Puts Out Now and Then as a Balance to All the Goofy Glory of Big and Heartless Exploitations of Explosions, Car Crashes, and SFX.
It is a Reminder of What Can be Done by "Accentuating the Positive" of People and Using the Art Form and How it Can be Utilized to Inspire and Infiltrate the Consciousness of the Masses and Promote Noble Behavior with Feel Good Films that are Well Done.
Skin Trade (2014)
Disappointing Considering but a Noble Effort and Worth a Watch
A Slight Disappointment, Even Considering the Low Expectations of This Type of Thing. Topping Off a Higher Anticipation is the Cast of Admittedly Aging Dolph Lundgren and Peter Weller, Combined With the Kick-Assers Tony Jaa and Michael Jai White, with Ron Pelleman Added for a Bit of Spice.
The Story of Human Trafficking, is Central to the Plot and is as Evil as it Gets, but the Movie Stays on That Course with Some Exploitation that Comes Across as a Voyeuristic Inclusion. The Non-Martial Arts Action Scenes are By the Book and are Quite Dull, Especially a Mid-Way Inclusion of a Motorcycle Chase that is Really Bad Production Wise.
The Editing is Sloppy and the Movie Could Have Used Some Serious Post Production Enhancing. On the Up Side the Hand-to Hand Scenes are Expectedly Realistic and Punched Up by the Talent of the Participants. These are Really the Highlight of the Film.
This is Lundgren's Baby and He has been Trying to Get it Filmed for Years. It's a Noble and Good Try but Cannot Escape its Low-Budget Roots and International Awkwardness at Times. Worth a Watch for Fans of This Type, Especially Lundgren/Ja/ White.
Longer, Better, Louder, and More Charming The Series Takes Off
Following the Success of the First Movie, This, The Sequel was Awarded a Bigger Budget and it Shows From the First Frame. The Digital Effects Also Improved.
As Everyone Knows This CGI Stuff Exponentially Grows at a Fast and Furious Pace. The Same can Be Said About the Overall Look and Feel to the Second Installment that Only Improves on its Predecessor.
As a Result, the Follow-Up is One of Those that Can Say, Without Hesitation, That the Sequel is Even Better than the Original. All of the Popular Characters Return and Some New Ones are Added and Contribute to a More Rich and In Tone a More Self-Righteous, or At Least Self-Conscious Message.
The Acceptance of Mutants Into Society as a Metaphor for the Gay Rights Movement is Anything but Subtle at Times. Iceman's Mother Asks..."Have you ever tried to NOT be a Mutant?" Nuff Said.
Along with Magneto, There is Now Brian Cox as a Nasty Nazi Like Experimenter on Mutants that is Creepy and Criminally Insane and Even Sadisticly Tortures His Own Son Because He is a Mutant. On the Good Guys Side, Nightcrawler (Alan Cumming) is Introduced and Plays a Major Role in a Charmingly Stunning Performance.
Fans of the Franchise, the Comic Books, and Superhero Movies Will Not Be Disappointed and the String of These Things, Thanks to the Wow of This Sequel are in for More X-Men. This Series is Just Getting Started.
The Invisible Boy (1957)
Disturbing, Awkward, and Unintentionally Bizarre
When it Came to B-Movies MGM Usually Didn't Have a Clue. Here is Another Example of the Haughty Studio Cashing in On the Popularity of Robby the Robot and Abandoning or Not Caring About Any of It.
This is an Unintentionally Disturbing "Kid's" Movie Where the Child is Literally Beaten by His Father, Threatened to be Beaten by His Father Even More, Spanked by His Mother, and Threatened by the Supercomputer to be Put to Death "Slowly". This is All Qute Cringe-Worthy.
The Movie Also Shifts Tone Half Way Through from a Light-Hearted "Having fun with my pal Robot" Story to a Kidnapping, Ultra Smart Computer Doing Brain Implants and Aspiring to Take Over the World.
Robby the Robot, Halfway Through the Thing Turns from Friend to Foe and it is Imaginable that Kids who Saw This in the Fifties Went from Amused to Terrified as it Unfolded.
It is Worth a Watch Just Because it is So Bizarre as it Turns Every Which Way and the Disjointment is "Ed Wood" Like the Way it is Handled. The Look of the Film is Shiny and Some of the Supercomputer Sets are Fifties Nifty.
Overall, it is a Very Odd Movie and its Strangeness and the Bizarre Behavior by the Parents is Part of its Retro Appeal, and That was Certainly Not its Intention.
The First One is Fine and the Series Only Got Better
The X-Men Franchise Got Better and Better, but This, the First in the Series is Actually a Fine Beginning. There is Very Little Origin to the Story and That Might Have Been a Decision to Enter the Team in Midstream to Appease the Masses.
This was Probably Done Because Many in the Audience Not Familiar with the Long and Deep History of the X-Men Comics Wouldn't Have the Patience for That Complex Back Story and Wildly Amazing Lineage for All of Those Characters and Subplots.
So, We Jump Right Into the Action and There Is Enough Dialog and Exposition for it All to Work Well. The Casting is Good Too. Patrick Stewart's Professor-X, Hugh Jackman's Wolverine, and Ian McKellen's Magneto are the Standouts, but the Rest Fit Nicely Into Their Characters and Costumes (Rebecca Romijn-Stamos as Mystique, fits quite nicely).
The CGI Looks Flat at Times as Does the Overall Template of the Movie Which is Strange for a Comic-Book Film. But there are Some Outstanding Set Pieces, Like Magneto's Standoff with the Police, and the Train Sequence. The Ending Statue of Liberty Battle Comes Off Rather Lackluster.
The Mutant vs Human Confrontation Can Obviously be Analogous to Real Life Prejudices, as Magneto Says "Humans always fear what they don't understand." On a Comic Book Level This is Fine and is the Story that the Franchise will Exploit for the Most of the Series and Why Not?
That's is Exactly What the Comics are About. The Struggle has been Going on in the Pages of the Stan Lee and Jack Kirby Creation Since 1963 in its Many and Varied Mutations.
Night at the Museum (2006)
Dumb-Dumb As It May Be It's Still a Lot of Family Friendly Fun
Laughing in the Face of the Critics, This Very Light-Hearted Family Comedy Managed to Come In as the Second Highest Grossing Film of the Year and Spawned Two Sequels So Far.
Ben Stiller is the Catalyst to All of the Museum Mayhem and He Does Yeoman Work Helped Along by a Well Known Supporting Cast Featuring Robin Williams, Owen Wilson, Carla Gugino, and Ricky Gervais. Small Parts Go to Dick Van Dyke and Mickey Rooney.
The Highlights of the Movie are Really the Clever Coming to Life Displays (only at night) of the Many and Varied Historical Representations. It's Mostly Dumbed Down and Slapstick is the Flavor of the Day. Hardly an Inspiration for Inspiring Young Eggheads or Curious Children in General.
But, the "Come-On" Seemed to Have Worked. The Real Museum in NYC Found its Attendance Up 20% During its Run. Mostly Going for Cheap Laughs the Movie is Shallow Stuff Considering the Educational Template.
However, it Can Be a Fun Time for Families and is One of Those that is Entertaining Enough and Could Easily Be Given a Pass for its Brainless Script. Good Enough to Recommend and its PG Rating is Rare for Non-Animated Movies These Days.
The Jacket (2005)
Stunning, Sensitive, and Sincere Derivative, Demanding, Psycho Sci-Fi
Not Surprisingly, This Psychological/Time Travel/Life Affirming/Sci-Fi/Horror Show Did Not Do Well at the Box-Office and was Tepidly Reviewed by Critics.
Derivative as it May Be, it Presents its Dense, Complex, Story in a Flashy Style with Some Very Good Performances. Besides Adrien Brody Who is Superb, and Keira Knightley Who Struggles Just a Bit, there is Kris Kristofferson Playing a Crusty and Unethical Doctor, Jennifer Jason Leigh as His Counterpart with Scruples, there is a Riveting Daniel Craig as an Inmate in a Small but Compelling Role.
The Film is Obviously too Much to Take In for the Mainstream and it's One of Those that is Disjointed by Design and May be Ambiguous to a Fault (especially the ending), but it is a Thriller that Keeps You On Your Toes. It Does So with Enough Artistry and Thoughtfulness to Make it One of Those That is Underrated for its Type.
It is Haunting, Terrifying, and Disturbing, but Also Touching and Philosophical in Ways that Some of its Contemporaries Are Not. The Ensemble Working This Film Do Everything They Can to Make it a Palatable Picture for Everyone, but it is Just Too Heavy and Demands Thinking and Contemplation. Something Most in the Audience Might Consider Taxing and Exhausting.
Recommended for Others that are Willing and Able to Strap-In and be Taken for a Ride, Fully Aware that the Destination is Anything but Predetermined. It's Just Too Good a Film to be Ignored and Can Most Likely be Appreciated by Discerning Audiences.
The Film, Once Again, is Not For Everyone but Worth a Watch to See If It's For You Because of the Professionalism Involved and Because it is Wrapped in a Stunning and Sensitive Package.
"Fear of the Internet" Film A Clever Experiment
Let's Get This Out of Way First. This is a New Modern "Gimmick", Not Unlike "Found Footage". A Novel, New Way of Presenting Cinema that Some Have Said May Have Founded a Genre.
But Like the "Found Footage" Format that May Not Be a Good Thing, Because the "Novelty" Will Probably Not Wear Well in the Long Run. It Doesn't Make the Viewer Physically Sick with the Camera Bobbing All Over the Place and Vibrating Ad Nauseum. In Fact the Camera Never Moves.
It's Static and Focused on a Computer Screen During a Skype Chat. Now, While the Camera Never Moves, the Screen's Images are in Constant Motion with Pop-Up Screens Coming and Going at a Blistering Pace with the Mouse Always in Hyper-Cyber-Drive, Searching and Landing on Various "Tools" and Websites.
Standing in for the Detective of Fiction, the Mouse, and By Proxy, the Users are Trying to Figure Out Just What or Who is Hacking Into Their Place in Cyberspace Making Threats and Following Through with Terror and Murder.
This Could Be One of Those that Could Be Called a "Fear of the Internet" Movie. The Plot is Complicated and You Have to Pay Close Attention. That's At Odds with the Intention Deficit Disorder of its Target Audience. It Was a Risk Worth Taking.
Because Overall, This is Quite Compelling and a Bit Scary at Times with the Pixelation of the People's Pictures Online Distorted Into a Freaky Horror Show by the Limitations of the Streaming. Their Faces Turn Into Grotesque Monsters that Make Them Appear Mutated.
Worth a Watch for its Newness and Because the Creativity of the Filmmaker is Applaudable. Un-Hip Viewers Over the Age of About 30 are Unlikely to Stay With It, but for Everyone Connected to its Virtual Vibe it is a Clever Experiment.
Omen IV: The Awakening (1991)
They "Don't give a damn about their bad reputation"
Looks Like a Made-for-TV Movie and It Was. That Said, It's Not as Awful as Some Say, Quite Naturally a Final Cash-In Produced After Omen III: The Final Conflict (1981). Go Figure.
The Makers of This Average TV Movie Figured There Were Still a Few Ring-a-Dings in the Franchise Cash Register. So, This is What We Get. There is Enough Creep Factor to Make it Watchable, with a Fine Lead Performance from Asia Vieira as Delia.
The Rest of the Cast is OK and the Thing is Handled with the Feel of a Rush-Job, but Fans of the Series and Horror Enthusiasts Seem to Pummel This Routinely. There is Certainly a Hellish Amount of Really Bad Horror Movies. Maybe Because Fans of the Genre are Suckers for Anything Remotely Relating. They Pay Their Money (once again) and are "Horrified" at What They Get.
Gullible, Comes to Mind, but That May Be Too Kind of a Word for These Pretenders that Seem High-Minded When it Comes to Their Beloved Horror Films. The Track Record is Really Quite Abysmal, Especially When it Comes to Franchise Films in the Genre. So, Don't Pretend to be "Shocked" at Mediocre and Bad Movies. Mostly, That's What You Get and Still Support This Stuff. Then Feel Cheated. What?
Overall, This is Typical in Late Numbered Series Films. Jason (Friday the 13th) Actually Went to Double Digit Sequels. This One is Not as Bad as its Reputation. But, Just Like Joan Jett, These Types of Filmmakers, "Don't give a damn about their bad reputation."