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Red Eye (2005)
Poor Brian Cox
A decent little thriller, nothing groundbreaking or that we haven't seen done before but for a short, simple movie, well done. It follows hotel manager Rachel McAdam's (who is so Canadian; sweet and polite) on a night flight to Miami when she becomes a pawn in a plot to assassinate the deputy secretary of homeland security after she is seated next to charming terrorist Cillian Murphy. Murphy wants her to reassign the officials room at her hotel and has kidnapped her father as insurance.
I enjoyed the suspense in the air after Rachel discovers who the cute guy actually is. I didn't like the fact that she became an action hero towards the end or that her terrorist forgot how to do his job, stumbling over things as he clumsily chases her with a knife. The pen in the throat was cool.
Poor Brian Cox, not a great role for him as the father he's completely underutilized all he does is shuffle around in slippers, being dad, asking his daughter if she is alright, napping and getting knocked out. He's a great actor too.
A rags to riches story that never really grabbed me
Joy is a bio-pic of entrepreneur Joy Magano, a divorced mother of two who risks her life savings to create the miracle mop. The success of that product leads to a home shopping empire and her rise to the matriarch of her family business dynasty.
It was pretty good, Jennifer Lawrence is always a treat so watch on screen, she is so compelling, but if I'm honest this was also kinda meh. A rags to riches story that never really grabbed me. It just wasn't compelling and dragged at times with very little character development. I always felt like this could have been more than it was showing. The A-list cast doesn't even help move things along. There is also some weird soap opera stuff here that went on way too long including Susan Lucci and Donna Mills from the view of her shut in mother.
Intresting and unique..mostly
I liked this one especially the first 3/4 of it, the end goes a bit silly. Its a cool movie, very Luc Besson identifiable, his style. Great action sequences, interesting locations China, France- I always like to see movies not specifically in America.
Very interesting and unique story idea -that humans only use 10% of their brains and Lucy can break this barrier and reach a whole new level in human evolution. Scarlett Johansson is amazing here, impressive, when she first gets kidnapped so scared then as the drug leaks into her system so badass.
Morgan freeman -much as I adore him often does these sort of cameos in movies these days and not much acting. He is good here as the sympathetic scientist... Just thinking he was also in that movie with Johnny Depp, Transcendence very similar story, he does more here.
Get Out (2017)
Refreshing and original
This was refreshing and original, I tend to seek these types of movies nowadays with all the reboots, remakes, part 7's and superhero stuff.
Get Out is unique, A very different take on Guess who's Coming To Dinner. It's a bit strange, Hitchcockian. Not really a horror movie, more on the WTF scale. Brain washing, cult like. Chris's best friend was funny, a breathe of fresh air. Is this what America is really like in terms of racism?
I'll See You in My Dreams (2015)
A nice movie
A very cute movie, dubbed a comedy/drama its more on the drama end. Watched with my Mum, mostly for Sam Elliot. Story follows Blythe as a widow who after the death of her beloved dog grows bored in her numbness of structured routine and decides to make some changes.
Over time she befriends the lonely pool man and finds romance with an intriguing stranger. Lots of drinking; wine beer martinis etc. A few laughs with Blythe Danner's friends (June Squibb, Rhea Perlman, Mary Kay Place) Just a nice movie.
The Choice (2016)
Another Nicholas Sparks adaption
One of the weaker Nicholas sparks adaptations, also one that is easily mixed up with all of the (11) other movies as there's nothing too stand out here. This time we follow the relationship between a med student and a charming vet over the course of a decade as they try to decide what they want out of life and what is important to them.
It's beautifully filmed wherever it is they always shoot these movies with lots of water, beaches, boats, rain, birds, and sunsets. There's love, sadness, happiness, a bit of mystery and ultimate tearjerking. Its your formulaic Nicholas Sparks but you know that going in.
Benjamin Walker as the main dude is cute but unremarkable, Teresa Palmer just reminded me of Kristen Stewart. Couple things that annoyed me; this has a "7 years later" thing take place but none of the characters change whatsoever in that time. Children are born, but everyone is exactly the same as the last scene. I mean at least alter their hair a bit. Enjoyed the dogs, although the puppies used were not golden retriever puppies or puppies at all just some small breed of dog.
Welcome to Marwen (2018)
This was different and it worked for me because of it.
Steve Carell plays real person Mark Hogancamp who after surviving a brutal attack from a group of Nazi thugs works through his brain trauma in the most imaginative way possible, by creating a tiny World War II-era town in his backyard.
I enjoyed this probably because it was different than anything I've seen before. Really cool the way the actors are CGI'd into dolls. It's quite a tough story and Steve Carell does well, acting the trauma, PTSD, anxiety, memory loss and addiction Mark is facing daily. Carell is a good actor. I also enjoyed his portrayal of Capt. Hogie the action hero figure. The romance with Leslie Mann was meh, weird, the dolls adventures awesome, the woman's shoe fetish, random. Yeah this was different and it worked for me because of it.
While We're Young (2014)
Amusing but nothing memorable
Ben Stiller are and Naomi Watts are in their forties, living in New York and seemingly happy. They befriend two young hipsters and enjoy the idea of feeling young again, cool clothes, new ideas and parties but their cross generational friendship eventually sours when Adam Driver shows his true colours. I found this pretty dull, a good cast, some funny moments with the older couple trying to be cool and the hipsters looking like losers in their pretentious aloofness. Amusing I guess but not memorable in any way.
Boy Erased (2018)
This was an ok movie, Russell Crowe and Nicole Kidman are very good in their roles as staunchly religious parents who out their son and send him to a gay conversion camp. Most of the movie takes place at the sinister conversion camp, it's honestly not all that interesting, sure it's messed up and horrible and like holy crap these places actually exist but not super memorable.
Some flashbacks thrown in to when the son starts to realize he might be gay and a strange college rape scene. Joel Edgerton is the counsellor, he is a bad man. See what happens when religious zealots have free reign, messed up.
Everything you'd expect
This was good, high quality as in budget and performances. You also know exactly what your getting going into #5, more of the same. A bit long winded at times, some of the scenes went on and on like the opera take down. I remember this from the last one too.
Amazing stunts, and not just the famous Tom Cruise on the outside of the plane taking off but him shimmying up a pole while handcuffed and flipping over the top of it. Amazing motorcycle sequence too. The drowning one freaked me out. Simon Pegg was less annoying this time around, less buddy cop banter. Enjoyed the kick ass girl.
This movie is a good time, everything you would be expecting from an MI movie. Why was Alec Baldwin in this?
American Made (2017)
Tom Cruise Made
Based on a true story of an airline pilot in the 1980's who is recruited by the CIA to (at first) take photos over Cuba and then later to smuggle drugs and weapons for the U.S government. Barry Seal slowly gets in over his head when he becomes involved with the Medellin drug Cartel.
I thought this story could have benefitted from a different lead, Tom Cruise is just his MI character, the same action guy as always with a different background and it just sucked the movie down for me so that I wasn't watching a true story about Barry Seal but a Tom Cruise action movie.
Its entertaining enough though and plays out like 'Scarface' or Johnny Depp's 'Blow'. All the money, so much money he doesn't know where to keep it after a while. Interesting unbelievably true, worth a watch.
The Mummy (2017)
Dark, tons of action, good SFX, Tom Cruise running and yet surprisingly dull
Tom Cruise is a tomb raiding rogue (Indiana Jones style) who inadvertently revives the long sleeping Ahmanet, a murderous Egyptian princess with a bloodthirst thousands of years in the making. She forms a bond with Tom as they crash about England.
This had great special effects -the plane crash is amazing, Ahmanet's escape from her prison of mercury and such and then draining bodies of their life force and regenerating her decayed body was cool. Tom waking up naked in the morgue - wow his body looks incredible. On the flip side Russell Crowe as mad scientist Henry Jekyll refers to Tom as a young man. I think they're the same age aren't they?
This is dark and somewhat violent, tons of action, lots of awesome Tom cruise running, very entertaining, great SfX but also surprisingly boring. Not sure why.
The Accountant (2016)
Liked this one a lot, a smart movie, makes you think, slowly unfolding characters twists and reveals. I had a couple of oh wow moments.
Ben Affleck is very good in this role as an autistic math genius who works as a financial consultant for criminal organizations. No emotion required for this role which I guess works in his favour because I just watched 'Live By Night' and he was terrible in that, showing zero emotion and one facial expression for the entire movie, Anyways I digress.
This is an intelligent thriller following Ben as he agrees to help Anna Kendrick, an accounting clerk look into fraud at the company she works at while at the same time being investigated by the treasury department. Way more action than I was expecting, believable action scenes though, lots of bullets flying 'John Wick' style, it works, is explained in a manner I believed, he doesn't just become an action hero for the sake of the movie. Good use of flashbacks there.
Big cast, everyone is awesome (J.K Simmons, Jeffrey Tambor, John Lithgow, Jon Bernthal) I liked the relationship with Anna K, liked Anna K very much. Loved the surprises and twists towards the end, the voice on the phone.
Appreciated that this story made me think, slowly unfolding and revealing, answering my questions -whatever happened to..? oh of course.
Sicario: Day of the Soldado (2018)
Intense and well done
FBI agent Josh Brolin enlists Benicio Del Toro -a mysterious operative, to help investigate and bring about a war of rival drug lords from the Mexican drug cartel, kidnapping a kingpin's daughter to deliberately increase tensions.
This was very good, intense, brutal and well done on all levels. A bit convoluted confusing about half way in where it becomes Benicio's movie and not so much Josh's anymore. He is amazing, that bit near the end.. The young girl that gets kidnapped to spark the cartel war is also very good. The scenes at the border crossing are eye opening the, the amount of people crossing it in all manor of ways, wow.
Good sub cast, (Catherine Keener, Jeffrey Donovan, Matthew Modine,) lots of violence, gunplay, boys toys, Blackhawks, car chases etc.
This sci-fi thriller was almost really good, some missed opportunities as we follow Ben Kingsley as a dying new York real-estate tycoon who undergoes a top secret procedure to transfer his consciousness into the body of a healthy young man. Of course he soon finds out (now as Ryan Reynolds) that neither the procedure or the company are quite what they seem.
I appreciated the uniqueness of this story unfortunately it could have been better. When Ben wakes up in Ryan's body he no longer acts like Ben, any of his mannerisms or oldness and they also should have played more into Ben discovering that his body knows how to do spy stuff like fighting, basketball etc. maybe Jason Bourne style instead of focusing on peanut butter. I liked the ending, sacrifice.
This never went anywhere
An okay movie, It had potential, started out good enough and then just kind of flopped as we spend 12 years watching two married scientists home school their kids in the woods. They've taken on a project and grant to explore the concept of 'nature vs nature' by raising three children in opposition to their supposed genetic tendencies.
This never really went anywhere and got boring fast, the breakdown of a marriage, winter in every single scene no matter the passage of time. It's meant to be a comedy, not so much, more occasionally amusing, the Russian guy had his moments "I'll be in the shower." I'd give this a miss.
Live by Night (2016)
Long, boring and meandering
This sprawling crime epic set in the prohibition era was long, boring, and meandering. It follows Ben Affleck as the son of a Boston police lieutenant who moves to Florida after a bank robbery gone wrong and stint in jail. He then becomes a bootlegger. As his operation grows he faces off against local gangsters, Klansmen and religious evangelicals.
Some decent action scenes using guns and cool cars from the 1920's and an impressive cast attached to the many characters but the storyline is so jumbled and flat you don't really get to know or care about anyone. Except maybe Elle Fanning who shines.
Ben Affleck just seemed out of place throughout, bored and miserable with one single facial expression (see movie poster -that never changes). He's also too old for this role, playing a young man in his 20's/30's rising to power. For some reason he also looked laughable in in his fancy, ill-fitting 1920s zoot suits although no one else did, I can't figure out the whys of that. By the end I just didn't care how it all turned out.
Gripping true story.
That this is based on a true story blows my mind. It follows Regina Loise as a young African American girl who navigates over 30 foster homes. Unbelievable what this child went through, unable to be adopted by her counselor Miss Kerr because she's white, Regina instead ends up in a loony and fed drugs, along with all the other white kids to keep them complacent.
You get a hate on for the director of the orphanage who fights to keep Miss Kerr and Regina apart based on race. Eventually Regina ages out of any kind of care and is just put out on the street with nothing. The two never forget or give up on each other being a family.
I'm assuming this was a made for TV movie, it felt that way. A balanced, gripping story though, decent enough acting, Ginnerfer Goodwin is her usual bubbly self. My only criticism would be the adult/older teen they choose to play Regina as a child/10 year old. It was hard to take her seriously, maybe a child actor would have been a better choice then trying to ignore the womanly figure on a little girl.
I liked the ending, seeing the real people very moving that even after all that time they still want to be mother/daughter.
Backdraft 2 (2019)
"Who are you man?' "I'm a firefighter!"
The opening scene sets the tone; bad guy is being chased, after getting caught he says 'who are you man?' Good guys explains 'I'm a firefighter!' Dun dun da, cue opening credits. After that I was like wow this is going to be crap, well it wasn't exactly crap, it wasn't great either but based on initial feelings better than I expected.
Couldn't tell you what the main story is really about, Chicago fire investigator Sean McCaffery is an arson investigator, his dad was Kurt Russel from the original 1991 Backdraft, Sean is a lone wolf, he's grumpy, takes risks, gets a new unwanted partner, they discover that a deadly fire was anything but accidental, the investigation leads them to suspect a link to international terrorism, they spend time trying to find a missile or something. Some neat stunts, cool Halloween explosion, bad shootout at end, belly wound, hero is literally spewing up chunks of blood but can still run and aid the girl.
Donald Sutherland is a bright spot in this he is awesome, repeating his role as creepy arsonist from the original. William Baldwin also returns, he looks (and sounds) exactly like Alex now, which was weird.
The 33 (2015)
Worth a viewing
Based on the true story of the mission to rescue 33 miners who were trapped in an underground mine In Chili for 69 days. Considering the source material this was actually a bit dry and slow going in parts. The cast is great and the families are included in the story as are the guys up top trying to find them but the actual story of the miners survival felt kinda glazed over.
There were things that I remember unfolding in the news that were very interesting and they weren't included in the story here. The guy jogging, the prayer meetings, mostly we just saw fighting amongst the starving scared men. Still an incredible story. Worth a viewing.
Men in Black 3 (2012)
Decent sequel, Watch it for Josh Brolin
Decent sequel to the franchise. Not great or even all that memorable but okay. I thought the story idea was clever which has Will Smith as agent J traveling back in time to 1969 and reuniting with his partner, agent K who is still a young man.
Josh Brolin is just amazing as a young Tommy Lee Jones, nailing his looks and mannerisms perfectly and that to me was probably the best part about this movie. Some decent action sequences, a cool motorcycle chase, aliens and CGI.
Jason Bourne (2016)
DId I miss something?
This was a big letdown, I'd had been looking foreword to it for ages too but for the most part this was boring, the storyline was... nothing... a same ole Bourne is trying to find out about his past, people in an office looking at computers trying to find him. Just flat, predictable and redundant.
Tommy Lee Jones, wow was he even present for filming? He was just going through the motions here and appeared to shoot most of his scenes from his living room as he's on his own, on the phone or seated at a desk, appearing grumpy (as per) and bored.
Even the synopsis is dull "The CIA's most dangerous former operative is drawn out of hiding to uncover more explosive truths about his past." Meh.
On the plus there are some decent fight scenes, car chases as expected, an exciting motorcycle chase and a great bad guy with Vincent Cassel but nothing stand out or special there, everyone is just going through the motions.
Maybe I should give this another try, did I miss something?
The Sixth Sense (1999)
I watched it during the day and built myself a blanket fort
Hadn't seen this in years and enjoyed it just as much in my rewatch. I will say though that knowing the outcome changed the fear factor a bit, almost like watching a different movie in that respect, and the makeup on the ghosts looks a little cheesy now but still excellent, scary as hell, even knowing the famous twist.
Blurb describes this as "best picture nominee with Bruce Willis as a child psychologist to the superb Haley Joel Osment, his tormented patient who has visions of the dead.
This is definitely a must see movie, I still wasn't sure that I would be able to get through it as I'm not great with the ghost stories but I watched it during the day and built myself a blanket fort. I remember back when this came out, the most remarkable thing was that nobody gave away the big surprise ending which would never happen today with all the spoiler alerts.
Toni Collette as the mum is excellent, Bruce is quietly tortured, Haley Joel Osment is amazing. Its scary and very clever. Follow the red clues.
Enjoyed my rewatch
Hadn't seen this in years and thoroughly enjoyed myself in a long overdue rewatch. Special effects still stand up today, fantastic cast, humorous and excellent in terms of an action popcorn flick.
Sure it heads into far fetched, over-the-top territory by the end as one thing after another goes wrong while shuttling about through an asteroid field, but I was invested. Its a fun ride including a sweet romance, multiple side stories from the extended cast and that iconic theme song from Aerosmith.
If I remember correctly there was a string of asteroid disaster films that all came out around the same time Deep Impact was another I enjoyed.
Space Cowboys (2000)
Old man humour from a fantastic cast
I enjoyed this one, good not great, with old man humour from a fantastic cast who all seem to be having a great time working together -which in itself makes this worth a watch.
The story flows, even if it tends to go on a bit and feel clichéd at times, its entertaining. Directed by Clint Eastwood, who also stars as one of a group of retired former pilots, recruited by NASA 40 years after their heyday to stop a runaway Russian satellite from hitting earth. He insists that his equally old teammates accompany him into space. They go through training again, bar fights, old wounds are healed, romances begin. Decent special effects and a bittersweet ending "fly me to the moon"
The opening flashback scene from the 1950's also makes this worth a watch, where we get to see young lookalike actors portraying Clint Eastwood, Donald Sutherland, Tommy Lee Jones and James Cromwell -using voiceovers from the real men. Very clever.
This did remind me of Armageddon -which I watched about a week ago, almost the same story, a bit less action here, not sure which came first?