Reviews

738 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
1/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
5 February 2018
When you watch a Terry Gilliam film, you should expect for there to be a fair amount of weirdness. When you add Science Fiction to the mix, there is the possibility that anything can happen. With this in mind, I was really excited to see The Zero Theorem, and what I got was simply one of the worst films I have ever seen! Qohen Leth (Christoph Waltz) is a computer genius, who has been assigned by Management to discover the meaning of life. He does this alone in an old abandoned church. This movie made absolutely no sense to the point where I don't even know how the hell to describe it in any way that would do it justice. Waltz is running around like a madman the entire time, talking so fast, with that accent, that he's impossible to understand. He meets Tilda Swinton at some type of party, and she keeps showing up for some unknown reason, personally I just think it's because she's weird and she likes being in weird movies. Waltz has all these odd computer programs, strange characters he interacts with and talks non-sense with, all in a film that moves faster than his internet connection. I really just didn't understand a thing that was going on and watching it a number of times or doing any amount of any drug in the world wouldn't change that. How is a solitary man playing strange computer games supposed to discover the meaning of life? Who are all these people who keep showing up? What in the hell are they talking about, and what does anything have to do with anything? I'm not entirely sure that another person on this planet besides Terry Gilliam understands what was going on in this film. All I know is that no one should have ever been exposed to whatever this nightmare was intended to be.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
3/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
5 February 2018
The more things change, the more things stay the same. That is supposed to be the message of this unique Sundance Film Festival winner, however any message the film intended to share was lost by it's sheer disturbing nature. Ryder (Logan Miller) is a Gay California teenager who is going with his parents to a family reunion in Kansas. Knowing that her rural family will never understand, Ryder's mother has kept that little detail from the rest of the family, much to Ryder's chagrin. Ryder rebels in his own way by wearing an outrageous outfit and keeping to himself at the family outing, only spending time with his young cousin, Molly (Ursula Parker) who wants to play in the barn. When Molly comes running back from the barn with an unusual bloodstain, Ryder earns the ire of the rest of his family and wants to tell them he's gay, but apparently being thought of as something else is even better than that. If this film displays one thing, it's that homophobia is alive and well, and that should have been more the focus of this film. While I think everyone pretty much suspected Ryder was gay, the whole situation with Molly made them think he was something else too and the focus was on that. The families reaction to it was what was even more disturbing as it ranged from what you'd expect to sheer ridiculousness. I honestly can't believe some of the things that happened in this film, as they were both disturbing and seemingly without much of a purpose. Logan Miller stars and now that I've seen him in a few other things, I can honestly say that he's the kind of actor who has to fit the role. He has this kind of whiny, emo boy personality that just doesn't fit with everything. In a film like this, if anything I'd expect him to be more outraged, emotional to the point of being over the top but he really wasn't, it was as if he didn't grasp what he was being accused of. Take Me To The River focused on a single event and just didn't let go, everything else became irrelevant. The film was disturbing, the acting was sub-par, and a lot of what happened just didn't seem to make a whole lot of sense.
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Mr 3000 (2004)
7/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
5 February 2018
Bernie Mac was one of my favorite comedians, but I have to admit that I wasn't expecting much out of this film. Mac played Stan Ross, one of the best baseball players to ever step foot on the field in Milwaukee. He retired right after he got his 3000th hit, something that is very difficult to do in the Majors. After his career, Mr. 3000 became his personal moniker, as he launched a number of businesses under the Mr. 3000 name. Ross is even being considered for the Hall of Fame, when a review of his statistics finds an error. As it turns out, three of his hits had been counted twice, and now to maintain his Mr. 3000 persona, Ross must return to the game, at age 47, to try and get three more hits. While this was supposed to be a comedy, the part I really enjoyed was seeing how this superstar, who had everything handed to him, his whole life, struggled to do the simplest of things. The other players hazed him, the younger players resented him, and he had to somehow rectify this with his massive ego. As for Mac, he was outstanding! The man was truly unique and I feel as though he never got the chance to reach his real potential. Films like Mr. 3000 were fun and definitely enjoyable for the audience, but they weren't the kind of award winning, career defining roles that he was really capable of. This film is full of laughs and the sports action wasn't bad either, to say the least, I was fairly impressed and I think you will be too.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The 5th Wave (2016)
6/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
5 February 2018
The 5th Wave is a rare of example of a film I enjoyed despite hating the novel it was based on. The book was extremely slow, as it was narrated by the lonely girl the film is focused on. She re-lived her experiences in flashbacks in the book, while the movie is more straightforward, therefore eliminating some of the monotony. Still the film isn't without it's flaws, as it is based on an idea that has been done to death. Aliens have invaded the Earth once again and this time they have done it in four crushing waves. Most of the planet is in ruins, millions are dead, and the few that are left have banded together to try and form some sort of resistance. A 5th wave is coming and the military has surmised that children will be the least affected by it, and have begun rounding them up and training them as soldiers. Cassie Sullivan (Chloe Grace Moretz) is one of these children, who is devastated to be separated from her family, but at the same time happy to be fighting along side her life long crush Ben Parish (Nick Robinson). For me, this film was less about the story and more about it's stars. As I said I didn't really care for the story, it's been done, and the whole Hunger Games love angel just seemed to be a lazy rip off. What I did enjoy was seeing two of Hollywood's biggest young stars together in the same film, Chloe Grace Moretz and Nick Robinson. Both of them have been getting bigger and better roles and to finally see them together in a major blockbuster film was a treat. Moretz's character was just another Katniss Everdeen/Tris clone, but she played in well. The true star of the film, was Nick Robinson, the popular kid in High School who transforms into Zombie, the fearless leader of the youthful army. Films like Kings of Summer and Being Charlie saw Robinson take the reigns and make those films his own, and in a way he did the very same thing here. He may not have been THE star, but he certainly was the one to watch, as he was involved in every great scene this movie had to offer. The 5th Wave is a mix of elements and characters simply stolen from other similar stories. The special effects were terrific, the young cast was out of this world, but as a whole, this film wasn't anything special.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The Glades (2010–2013)
7/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
31 January 2018
The story of The Glades is one of consistency, as the show was consistent to a fault. From the series premiere to it's finale, across four seasons, nothing ever changed. When the show went into re-runs, the only way you knew what season you were watching, was by seeing how big Uriah Shelton was, it had become that ridiculous. What could they have done with an episonic police drama that hadn't been done before, not much, but something would have better than nothing, as like most, near the end, I just completely lost interest.

Jim Longworth (Matt Passmore) is a homicide detective from Chicago, who doesn't like to play by the rules. He has his own way of doing things and it earned him a ticket out of town. He relocated to the Florida Everglades, expecting quiet days at work and weekends of golf in the sun, but murder happens everywhere. Each week Longworth finds unique homicides and ends up doing battle with everyone from deranged soccer moms to international drug smugglers, as he tries to keep the people of Florida safe.

One of the main focuses of the show is Jim's feelings for a nurse/medical student Callie (Kiele Sanchez), who often gets involved in his cases. Jim has become a mentor to her young son, Jeff (Uriah Shelton) and would love to be with Callie, but she can never seem to finalize her divorce or balance her life. It is a recurring theme throughout the series that never seems to get resolved and becomes unbelievably frustrating after 50 episodes of the same thing.

The show always starts with a crime, Jim investigates, jokes with the medical examiner and geeky forensic guy, and then works the case at the same time doing his back and fourth with Callie and Jeff, and that's it! There were never any recurring storylines, never any changes, nothing to keep people interested from season to season! How about a cliffhanger or a ballbuster of a new boss? Maybe someone should have gotten shot and their future left up in the air? Ever heard of a serial killer? There was never anything but the current case. The comedy was always there and at first the back and fourth with Jim and Callie was great, but when you're doing the same thing four years later, who cares already?

The bottom line, this was a show that had potential, I liked the characters, the setting was fairly unique, and there were a couple of really talented new faces associated with this show. However, The Glades was happy with the status quo and didn't take any risks of any kind. It quickly grew stale, the ratings dropped, and now it's just another failed forgotten cop show streaming on Netflix.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The Phenom (2016)
3/10
The Ultimate Movie Review!
31 January 2018
Hopper Gibson (Johnny Simmons) is in a position that every little boy dreams about. He is a star rookie pitcher in Major League Baseball. His numbers and talent are off the chart, when all of a sudden, he can't find the strike zone. There is nothing wrong with him physically, so the team sends him down to the minors and puts him to work with the top sports psychologist in the country. I really don't understand professional critics and what they look for when they rate a film. Take The Phenom for example, this film has got to be the slowest and most boring sports film I've ever seen, yet it has an 80 on Rotten Tomatoes. There was very little sports action in this film and the fast majority of it consisted of this guy sitting in a room talking to a shrink! Yes, the shrink was played by Paul Giamatti, who is an unbelievably talented actor, but why the hell would anyone want to watch some dudes therapy session? When he wasn't in therapy, he should be on the field, but no, he's dealing with his over barring father, who is fresh out of prison. Who plays this bad ass, bullying his pro-athlete son, who is in peak physical condition? A very old looking, very tattooed, Ethan Hawke and I really wasn't buying that for a second. There were some talented actors in this film, no doubt, but The Phenom was 88 minutes of talking and nothing more, what in the hell is so great about that? This film was as boring as movies get, so unless you're a die hard Paul Giamatti fan, I would absolutely let this one pass you by.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
8/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
31 January 2018
Is it just me or were comedies funnier in the 80s? Adventures In Babysitting was by no means raunchy, it doesn't even compare to the films of today in that respect, but in someways there just seem to be a lot more laughs in these classic 80s comedies. For those who don't know the story, Chris (Elizabeth Shue) passes up a night with her boyfriend to babysit for two kids. It was the right choice, but when her best friend is left stranded and in trouble, Chris is forced to take the kids into Chicago to go and rescue her. What awaits her there is an adventure she never saw coming, with everything from gangsters to car trouble and perhaps even a new romantic interest? This film was supposed to be the one that made Karate Kid alum, Elizabeth Shue, a big star, but despite the films success and eventual cult status, it never happened. It's hard to understand why that is. I think it has a lot to do with her virtually disappearing for three years after this film, only to re-appear for a bit part in Back To The Future. Had she ridden the wave of success from this performance, she would have been one of the late 80s biggest names. Shue was fantastic, tough when she needed to be, caring when she wanted to be, and of course she always had the right line on the tip of her tongue. Add to the mix two obnoxious young teens and a tough as nails young tomboy and you have a mixture for success. Lest we forget this was a Christopher Columbus film, so we also have all those oddballs and crazy dumb criminals we know and love thrown in there too. Adventures In Babysitting was almost like a trial run for Home Alone, three years later. While the film certainly had it's share of flaws, and would not be rated PG-13 by today's standards, it was a largely enjoyable family film and in many ways a distant cousin to Home Alone. I loved this film when I was a kid and I appreciate it even more now, Adventures In Babysitting is highly recommended fun for the whole family!
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
King Jack (2015)
4/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
31 January 2018
Following the unexpected success of Winter's Bone in 2010, these dark, modern, noirish type films have been all the rage in Hollywood. In fact, these types of films have come to define the 2010 generation of film. Mostly set in rural areas, focusing on the lives of less fortunate people, these films tend to focus on some life defining moment. King Jack certaintly fits this model, and much like Winter's Bone, it is also a coming of age story. Jack (Charlie Plummer) is an angry fifteen year old, who has been bullied his whole life and acts out by getting in trouble. After a family issue, his younger cousin Ben (Cory Nichols) is forced to stay with Jack and his family. At first Jack is upset to be saddled with his naive younger relative, until he comes to realize they're in the same boat, and in Ben he may have found a potential ally. I understand that the premise of the movie is that Jack is a bullied kid, befriends another bullied kid, and all of a sudden their lives don't suck as much anymore, except that they do. Just because they found each other doesn't mean the bullies have gone or that their family situations will necessarily be any better, so what was the point? Watching this film, was simply watching a couple of teenagers hang out in a bad neighborhood, waiting for something substantial to happen. A few events happen here and there, but nothing life altering, and certainly nothing to base a film off of. To be honest, the whole thing was kind of boring. In general, I love this new style of film making, but when it came to King Jack, there were a couple of crude jokes, some anti-climatic scenes, and just a whole lot of nothing going on.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
3/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
24 January 2018
First of all how does a movie like this manage to get a cast like this? It boggles the mind that these actors would actually be willing to take part in such a shit show, but they did, and it was an epic disaster. Inside a house once owned by a serial killer, college girls looking for money, live, on camera 24/7, in a place where anything can happen. Ya see, they are actually part of a fetish porn website, where they can become victims at anytime and people pay big money to see this. Unbeknownst to them, the serial killer isn't dead, and one night he returns to the house, where the killings become all too real and are streamed live on the web for the whole world to see. Plain and simple this is a mildly pornographic slasher film and a bad one at that. Some big names have some small roles that are honestly beneath them, and not at all worthy of their time. Not only is the story badly written, but the film is just frustrating to watch, as it keeps switching back between the actual house and the poor quality web feed people around the world are watching. The bottom line here, there is a great cast, a title and even a preview that will attract every horror fan that sees it, but if you get sucked in, you will be highly disappointed.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Bleed (I) (2016)
5/10
The Ultimate Movie Revew! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
24 January 2018
With a baby on the way, Sarah (Chelsey Crisp) and Matt (Michael Steger) decide to have some friends over to celebrate their new home and new family. It should have been a quiet day, until Sarah's unique brother Eric (Riley Smith) shows up. Eric is a drifter and a ghost hunter, whose bad behavior and odd ball girlfriend threaten to ruin the whole event. Eventually Eric gets into a discussion about what he does, and wanting to silence the skeptics, suggests a ghost hunt at an abandoned nearby prison, that's supposedly haunted. Well how could a woman who is six months pregnant not agree to hike through the woods to a haunted abandon building in the middle of nowhere? That part was a little ridiculous, but the backstory of the prison and the family dynamic actually wasn't too bad, especially for a B-horror movie without any big names attached to it. However that is what also becomes it's downfall, as once the action begins, the lack of experience and money for special effects comes into play, and this film quickly turns more into what I expected it to be. At 40 years old, Riley Smith seems to have been around forever, with over 75 IMDB credits under his belt. He was a pretty interesting character, why there wasn't more of a focus on Eric in the second half of the film, I don't know. I'm just a critic, but I can tell you from my experience, when you lack funds for better special effects, focus on the story and the experienced cast. The filmmakers didn't do that, and the whole thing just kind of falls apart at the end. Bleed wasn't bad for what it was, the first half half was better than expected, the second half, where all the fun stuff happens, was pretty much a disappointment.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
St. Vincent (2014)
8/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
24 January 2018
Chemistry can make all the difference in a film, even when the story has been done before. St. Vincent wasn't a great film because the story was out of this world. In fact, it wasn't even all that original, but rather the fantastic chemistry between veteran Bill Murray, and newcomer Jaeden Lieberher made all the difference. After a bitter divorce, Maggie & Oliver have been forced to move to a new neighborhood, where they find their new neighbor is a bitter old drunk named Vincent (Murray). Vincent wants nothing to do with anyone, until happenstance throws him together with Oliver, who he reluctantly agrees to watch in exchange for a paycheck, but what does he know about taking care of a kid? Even though this movie could have been more raunchy, Bill Murray is always funny and paired together with this scrawny, innocent, overprotected kid, made for some of the best interplay I've seen in a very long time. Murray was at the top of his game, but he almost had the show stolen right out from under him by young Jaeden Lieberher. Four years later, we know this kid is a star, and after seeing this performance, it's easy to see how he landing huge roles in the movies It and The Book of Henry. Finally the cast is rounded out by Melissa McCarthy who I honestly can not stand anymore, but believe it or not, she was very reserved and laid back. I didn't know she was actually capable of doing that. St. Vincent won't win any awards for originality, some parts could be a bit slow, although there were a few surprises. As for me, I love the chemistry, I always enjoy seeing how young actors and actresses got their start, and the film stars Bill freaking Murray, need I say more?
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
8/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
13 December 2017
One thing I love about the Marvel Universe is that it is always trying to evolve. No matter how big the last box office or how good the last movie, with each film it is is always trying to get bigger, better, and even re-invent itself. With that however there is always a danger of going too far, and when it comes to their latest film, Thor: Ragnarok they came close. In his third installment Thor learns he must face his greatest foe of all, his long lost sister, who had been locked away millennia ago. She is said to be stronger than even Odin himself and casts Thor and Loki out of Asgard, where they wind up on a strange world, where Thor is forced to compete in a battle royal against an old friend. Thor has always featured arguably the best special effects in the Marvel film franchise, and at least to me, has always been more Science Fiction and therefore the least realistic of any of their modern characters. In an attempt to humanize him more and make him a little more friendly to general audiences, Marvel added a ton of humor to the character in Ragnarok. While I agree, Thor was a little dry, he always had his own wit to him, and by adding all the humor to the character I felt as though it took away from his mystique. Marvel is also using a lot more crossover material in the individual films than they have before. While the followers of the universe love it and call for more, this tends to confuse general audiences, who don't necessarily go to see all the Marvel films. It's a fine line that has to be drawn between pleasing the fans of the universe and the general audience, in order to keep the enormous box office. This time, they managed to tow the line, but the direction suggests that next time they may not be so lucky. As for the cast, again Marvel proves that when it comes to casting for their characters, there is no one better in the business as even Jeff Goldblum fit his role like a glove. Their was a little too much humor for my taste, Thor isn't Deadpool or a Guardian of The Galaxy, but by and large it was still a very enjoyable film. Truth be told, I was far more interested in the after credits scene then I was by the collaboration of Hulk and Thor or the resurgence of Hera.
0 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The Returned (2015)
4/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
13 December 2017
Today there are more networks and streaming services offering original programming than ever before. It is an amazing time for TV lovers and it seems that anyone can get pretty much anything on the air. With all these new shows debuting all over the place, this does unfortunately leave the networks at somewhat of a disadvantage when it comes to original ideas. Out of desperation, many networks have turned to re-booting old shows, bringing back cancelled ideas that didin't work, and even Americanizing overseas television shows, The Returned is an example of the later.

I understand why A&E chose to take a show from overseas, Americanize it, and market it as their next big hit, but why the Returned? This idea has been done to death, both in movies and on TV, and while the show is critically acclaimed, the ratings for the overseas version were terrible, the show was cancelled after it's second season. If no one is watching it over there, why did they think anyone would watch it over here?

The returned takes place in a small Northwestern town, where one day, out of the blue, people who have been dead, some for decades, start showing up back at home with no memory of being gone at all. Each episode is broken up into sections that follow specific individuals and their interactions with their loved ones and society. There is also of course the police and investigative angle to the whole thing, and an unsolved crime thrown into the mix, in order to try and keep viewers coming back each week.

Funny thing is, I wasn't all that crazy about this episode of the Twilight Zone. It was a little better when The X-Files did it. The 4400 added beings from the future and turned it into a series that quickly ran out of storyline and fizzled out, and now we have The Returned. This isn't an original idea, far from it, and the fact that it takes place in the same location as the 4400 is completely laughable.

The cast has a few standouts that made the show a bit less tiresome, Mark Pellegrino is always fun to watch, as you never can figure out if he's a good guy or a bad one. We're also introduced to a new young actor in the form of Dylan Kingwell. He doesn't say much, but his character is honestly one of the most fascinating mysteries of the whole show.

The bottom line is that this show is a complete rip off of other ideas and there is really very little here to keep the viewers interested. The boys story turned out to be really cool, The murder investigation was interesting but under utilized, and there were a few cast members I enjoyed. Otherwise the writing was terrible and parts of this show were just painfully slow. There are some terrific overseas shows that no one has even mentioned bringing over here, why they chose this one, I'll never know.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Spotlight (I) (2015)
10/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
13 December 2017
The truth is always stranger than fiction and that's why it makes for the best movies. Spotlight is the 2016 Academy Award Winner for Best Picture and it was well deserved. This star studded cast comes together to tell the true story of how the Boston Globe was finally able to breakthrough the decades long wall of silence, and expose the Catholic Church's child molestation scandal. Michael Keaton headlines this all-star cast and shows that while he's been out of the spotlight (pun intended) for some time now, he hasn't lost a beat. As the enigmatic leader of the newspaper's Spotlight section, Walter Robinson (Keaton) will not give up the fight for the truth, no matter the personal cost. Even when his own bosses tell him the story is dead and to give up, he refuses to let it go and he shows that one man with a mission really can change the world. This film doesn't simply shine a light on the Catholic Church in a way it would rather nobody ever had, but it also gives views an in depth, inside look at all the intricacies that go into investigative journalism. With all the reports of fake news and all of us who simply get our news from staring at a screen, it's hard to think about all the effort that goes into getting that information from real life to print and I personally found the process fascinating. This film has a lot going for it, from an inside look at a long forgotten industry to the mysteries behind a long hidden secret. It features some terrific writing and more than one outstanding performance. You don't get six Oscar nominations by accident. This is a great film and a great addition to our list of can't miss movies!
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
4/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
13 December 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Here we have yet another example of a terrific performance wasted in an absolutely terrible film. I don't understand why certain actors continue to under value themselves and take on roles like this one. Toby Hemingway gives a tremendous performance as Brennan, a drifter who rents a room in the Henderson household. At first he seems like a normal young guy, looking for a place to stay, until it become apparent that he is obsessed with their son, Mike (Cody Longo). That's when this film turns into some strange homoerotic version of Cape Fear, but not really, because the catch is, Mike is away at college and while he's there, Brennan is hanging out with his best friend and hooking up with his little sister. Is Brennan actually gay? Does he want Mike? His life? His family? No one knows because nothing is explained! All we ever see in this film are Brennan's current actions and out of context they make absolutely no sense. This isn't one of these films where it all comes together in the end either, it just keeps getting more bizarre, but at the center of it all is Toby Hemingway. He seems to always show up to take his cloths off in bad movies, but the fact is that he's more than that guy. The part of Brennan required a wide range of emotions to be believable and Hemingway pulled it off. The only reason I even made it to the end of this awful movie was because I enjoyed his performance and was curious to see where he'd go next. It's honestly a shame that it was wasted though on just another badly written story that I guess made sense to someone.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Cheap Thrills (I) (2013)
6/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com
13 December 2017
Craig Daniels (Pat Healy) is having a hell of a day. He's been fired on the very same day he's recieved an eviction notice on his front door. Content to drink his troubles away, Craig runs into an old friend from High School. Together they start catching up and run into a unique couple, a couple who starts offering them money simply for doing oddball things for their amusement. The duo agrees and even goes back to the couples house with them, and that's when things really start to get bizarre. I feel like I've seen something similar and far more serious before, but I can't place my finger on it. What I really liked about this film was that despite it's B-movie status, and obvious lack of quality writing, what goes down isn't as expected as you would think. A lot of it really was surprising and they do spare us the pain and torture of doing what is obvious. I also enjoyed Pat Healy as Craig, he's not the kind of character you'd expect to see in a movie like this, and he added an interesting dynamic to a cast that was otherwise pretty droll. Cheap Trills has a few funny and unexpected moments in it, and to be honest it was better than I thought it would be. It still however very much deserves it's B-movie status and reeks of inexperience.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Quantico (2015–2018)
9/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
18 July 2017
Last year, Quantico debuted on ABC with an incredible story line and a new action star for the next millennium. The show was so innovative and original, that it jumped quickly to the top of the ratings and was easily renewed. ABC thought the show was strong enough that it could draw viewers on any night, in any time slot, but they couldn't be more wrong. Quantico's first season was one of the best seasons of television I've ever seen, but it was the kind of story that left many viewers questioning, what else could they possibly do afterwards? In only it's second season, Quantico set two television records. The first, saw the biggest drop in rating ever between a first season and a second. The second, saw the show renewed for a third season, as it had some of the highest DVR and on demand numbers of any show ever! Quantico was renewed based solely on DVR and on demand numbers, something that is unheard of and as little as five years ago never would have happened.

The series started with a bang, a big one, as terrorist blew up New York's Penn Station and immediately blamed for it, an FBI agent of middle eastern decent, Alex Parrish (Priyanka Chopra). She's an introverted person, and she knows she's been set up, by the only people who could have, one of her classmates from her time at the FBI academy at Quantico, she graduated from a year earlier. From there, each episode is a mix of Alex on the run in real time, trying to figure out who set her up and flashbacks to her time at the academy, showing her interacting with her classmates as she tries to remember anything she may have missed.

TV shows just aren't written this well, it just doesn't happen, and when it does, it's usually in a ten episode cable series. I have never seen a network show that was this clever and gripping. Aside from the writing, Bollywood star, Priyanka Chopra, made the leap to Hollywood in a way that hasn't been done before. While Bollywood is just as big as Hollywood, it's biggest stars have never enjoyed the same success stateside, until now. She was beyond impressive and regardless of what happens with Quantico, has a bright future ahead of her.

Season two just started streaming and it's next up on my list, but like many, I am beyond curious about what could possibly happen next. For better or worse, the mystery was solved in season one, at least that's what we believe. What could possibly be left for season two? We saw them graduate the academy and we saw the end of the case, supposedly (I'm still a bit skeptical), where does the series go for here. Quantico always struck me as that series that was one hell of an idea, but if it succeeded, and it did, how does one keep the story going and keep it going with the same intensity? Similar shows with big ideas and tremendous first seasons like The Killing, The Riches, Under The Dome, and Wayward Pines quickly fizzled out. Will that ultimately be the fate of Quantico, or will it stand the test of time?
1 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
4/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
18 July 2017
In a small mining town, an accident has killed several workers, leaving a lone survivor, Amos Jenkins (Boyd Holbrook). The townspeople are furious and blame the mines owner, the towns wealthiest resident, a cold, heartless man, who many suspect caused the accident with his shortcuts and cheap business practices. The town is out for blood, but only one of them, literally, as soon after the accident, the mine owners teenage son turns up dead. Little Accidents is yet another example of these dark modern noir type films, that have become so popular the past decade, and normally I am a huge fan of them. This film however, may have had the modern noir feeling, but actually had the old noir story line AKA slow, strange, and confusing. I chose this film because one of it's stars is Jacob Lofland, who at just 21 years old, has only been acting for 5 years, but he is a natural in every sense of the word. Every performance he has given has been better than the one before it. His talent has lead him to leading roles in the Maze Runner series, as well as the AMC show, The Son. Being as fond of his style as I am, I decide to go back and watch his filmography from the beginning, and that's where I found Little Accidents. While Lofland's part was minor, you are still able to see some of the skills that brought him to where he is today. Paired with Elizabeth Banks and Josh Lucas, this was one fantastic cast, featured in a terrific setting, and I was sure this film was a can't miss, but the story had other ideas. Little Accidents was all over the place, some of things that happened have nothing to do with the story, and make little sense. The Bottom Line, don't let a terrific cast fool you, this film is slow and all over the place. The mystery, isn't much of one and the story will leave you scratching your head.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The Call Up (2016)
7/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
18 July 2017
One day the best gamers in the world receive an invitation to compete for a $100,000 grand prize. When they all arrive, they find themselves alone in an office building, given instructions by a computer, which tells them to put on these state of the art suits, and once they do they are literally in the game. The game is like nothing they've ever seen before, a real life Call of Duty, but when they engage the terrorists, they learn that the consequences are all too real, and the only way to get out is to win. The Call Up isn't a new idea, however after the failure of films like Gamebox 1.0 and Stay Alive, it's been a decade since anyone has attempted to make a film like this. Since then, the technology has come a long way, allowing the filmmakers to finally get it right. The CGI and computerized effects are impressive for any film, not to mention a B-movie. The original idea and tech are so innovate, that it takes your mind off the fact that the acting in this film wasn't all that great. Additionally, the development of the characters and their backstories was fairly strong, strong enough, that each viewer should have their own favorite to win, meaning the audience is invested in the game as well. Watching this film is an adventure, in that one feels a part of the game, the strategy, and even has an investment in what happens to the individual gamers. A better cast would have added a lot to this film, but as I said it's a B-movie and I'm guessing all those special effects didn't come cheaply. Viewership without any performer of recognition may have been a factor, but once people click that watch button, they will be quickly drawn into a film the likes of which hasn't been seen before. The Call Up receives big points for originality, special effects, character development, and certainly stands out for being a film that is truly one of a kind.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
8/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
18 July 2017
In 1982, missing children reports were so rare, that often times the local authorities didn't take them seriously. Most of these kids were considered runaways, as authorities at the time couldn't even fathom the depths of depravity that some people are capable of sinking to. In the case of Johnny Gosch, not only wasn't he a runaway, the compelling documentary, Who Took Johnny?, and the subsequent books by his mother, Noreen, have shown that not only may Johnny still be alive 35 years later, but he may have suffered more torture than anyone in the history of this planet. On September 5, 1982, Johnny Gosch, a local paperboy was abducted from Des Moines, Iowa. Despite eyewitness statements, the local police, considered him to be a runaway. Over the years evidence and even a witness go to the FBI to say that Johnny was used for human trafficking. Pictures have turned up and even his mother claims, Johnny stopped by the house for a brief time, 15 years after he'd disappeared. The documentary shows how the local authorities, didn't care and mishandled the case right from the very beginning, and how the FBI kept the family completely in the dark. To this day, despite the fact that her son could be god-knows-where, Noreen Gosch has become an outspoken defender for missing children and the rights of their parents. There is no doubt that this documentary is anything but unbiased and impartial, and while I'm not sure I believe everything Mrs. Gosch says, when taken as a whole, one can't ignore everything that happened in this case. The other side of this gave blanket statements or declined to be interviewed, which tells me, she's right about more than a few things, and even if a third of this is true, it's appalling. When catastrophe strikes, we rely on those in power to take care of us and make things right, but what happens if they just don't want to? This documentary is truly eye-opening and provides plenty of ammunition to victims rights advocates.
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Luke Cage (2016– )
8/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
12 July 2017
I was never a big superhero guy, but what I love about this new crop of Netflix superhero shows, is that for the most part the characters are new and relatively unknown to the general audience. It's so refreshing to see something in the genre beyond Batman and Superman. What's more is that this new crop of superhero is much more realistic than anything we've seen before, perhaps none more so than Luke Cage.

Luke Cage was in prison for a crime he didn't commit, the victim of a horrifying experiment that left him with super strength and unbreakable skin. Unlike the other superheroes, Luke doesn't want to be a hero, he just wants to live a normal life in obscurity, in his Harlem neighborhood content with working in a barber shop. What Luke can't stand though is seeing injustice, when he knows that he is capable of doing something about it. When he finally decides to take a stand, all hell breaks loose.

What I find odd is how everyone is talking about Wonder Woman. How it's more than time we had a strong female superhero and how great the film was, but no one mentioned the fact that it's about time we had a strong African-American superhero too. What's more is that his story was completely original and more realistic than any other superhero film or TV show I've ever seen! Luke Cage isn't a blind attorney who somehow sees everything. He's not fighting some ridiculous weird purple mist, and he's not some samurai who thinks he's a God, Luke Cage is just a man, who is fighting gangsters and corrupt politicians.

Mike Colter is the star of the show and he just has this way about him that is infectious and makes you want to follow him. He couldn't be more perfect for this role, as he's laid back most of the time until he's not and then watch out. As for his co-stars, the stand out among them is recent Academy Award winner, Mahershala Ali. I said it years ago when I reviewed his awful show, the 4400, and I've repeated it every time I've seen him since, this guy is outstanding! Ali is one of the best actors, who until last year, nobody knew existed. Every single thing he is in, is that much better because of it, and I am thoroughly entertained every single time I watch him. His portrayal of the gangster Cottonmouth, was the best villain I've seen in a superhero themed project since Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight.

The bottom line, Luke Cage IS a real life superhero. To date there has never been anything in the genre, even close to being as real or as honest as this. Luke Cage is unique, dynamic, and exciting, as well as being the best written out of any superhero show that I've ever seen. Marvel didn't just hit a home run with Luke Cage, they hit a grand slam!
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
8/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
12 July 2017
Action movies didn't really take off until the 1980s, when the technology caught up with the big ideas. Out of those films some big stars emerged, many of which are still hanging in there making movies today. However, in recent years a new crop of action star has emerged, one that is more charismatic and more of an actor than just simply a big guy. One of the most exciting of the pack is the star of London Has Fallen, Gerard Butler. After surviving a kidnapping attempt in the thrilling, Olympus Has Fallen, President Asher (Aaron Eckhart) won't go anywhere without Mike Banning (Butler) by his side. Despite a lot of chatter, the pair travel to London for a world summit, where terrorists plan on doing a lot more than talking. They plan to distract the high police and military presence by attacking the city, thereby leaving President Asher vulnerable to assassination. So if I'm understanding this correctly, blowing up half of London will distract the U.S. Secret Service enough to leave the U.S. President vulnerable? This is why nobody watches action films for the story lines. We watch these movies to see the incredible moves, the gratuitous violence, the unbelievable special effects, and of course that catch phrase we all know is coming. Gerard Butler stars and he just gets better with every film he is in, as his technique and style remind me so much of a young Bruce Willis. Let's just hope that M. Night Shyamalan doesn't make him shave his head and turn him into a zombie as well. Assisted by a cast of veteran award winners the likes of Morgan Freeman, Melissa Leo, and Angela Bassit, this film doesn't just have the moves, but it has the star power to back it up. The story here is absolutely ridiculous, but when it comes to a great action film, who really cares? London Has Fallen has everything you could ever ask for from an action movie and it's star is only continuing to rise.
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
6/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
12 July 2017
Evan Lake (Nicholas Cage) was a legend at the C.I.A., but after years in the game, and a particularly horrible experience at the hands of the Taliban, he was diagnosed with dementia, and forced into retirement. Lake is moving on with his life when new information comes to light, that his old nemesis, a terrorist leader long believed dead, is back. Knowing their best chance to catch him is Lake, they turn to him for help, but can he keep it together long enough to complete his mission? This unbelievably was a b-movie, yet a remarkably strong performance for Nicholas Cage, who randomly had to go between C.I.A. legend and confused old man. His performance is aided by the late Anton Yelchin, playing an analyst who admires Lake so much, that he goes against orders to help him with his mission. The whole dynamic between the man at the end of his career on his last mission, and the boy at the start of his career on his first mission, really added something different, that you don't typically see in espionage films. Dying of The Light really does have a lot to like about it, but one must remember, it is an espionage film and a direct-to-video one at that. The writing isn't spectacular and parts of it are more than somewhat confusing. They also throw in a lot of Evan's flashbacks and delusions at the completely wrong times, which really did start to bother me as the film got more intense. Overall, I did enjoy this film, I thought the acting was terrific, and I loved the dynamic and chemistry between the two leading men, despite the obvious age difference. Dying of The Light certainly isn't a perfect movie, but it's still an entertaining one.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
The Trust (2016)
2/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
12 July 2017
There are certain actors and actresses whom I will watch in anything they release, Nicholas Cage is one of those actors. Even in the worst movies, he always gives a strong performance and I enjoy watching him work, but even the Academy Award winning actor couldn't save The Trust. Cage plays Stone, a lifelong cop still on the bottom of the pecking order. Luckily for him, he's paired with the much younger Waters (Elijah Wood), another cop with few aspirations. Together they don't make up a team of elite crime fighters, so on their off hours, they're small time criminals, and as it turns out they're not great at that either. One day while investigating a case, they notice a safe in the evidence room and decide to bust it open, what's inside leads them into a mess of police corruption. For starters, this movie doesn't make sense! Everyone talks in riddles, it's impossible to know who is on what side, and most important of all, what's the point? If these guys are corrupt cops, why do they care so much when they discover that they aren't the only ones? They're losers who don't care about anything, until they find out there are other bad cops, then all of a sudden they are Starsky and Hutch? I love the cast, but between the riddles, the constant twists, and the strange dialogue this film was just a mess, and pretty much unwatchable.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
Wonder Woman (2017)
7/10
The Ultimate Movie Review! - http://tss5078.blogspot.com - @tss5078
3 July 2017
So DC finally got one right, isn't that what everyone's saying? I completely agree, Wonder Woman was much better than anything else DC has released in a very long time, and it was a pretty great film, but was it as amazing as everyone say it was or are we all a bit bias due to the hype surrounding the film? In the first blockbuster superhero film featuring Wonder Woman since the 1970's, we see Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) sitting in her office, remembering how it all started, and we are thrown back to the Island of the Amazons, where she is a little girl. We see her grow up and go through her training, with her aunt played admirably by the Princess Bride herself, Robin Wright, making an epic comeback. After which, a series of events lead her to meet a man and leave the island to join the war effort in England. Gal Gadot played Wonder Woman and she was truly something special, I mean to take nothing away from her or her performance with this next statement, but I wouldn't be doing my job if I didn't point this out. While everyone got caught up in the hype of the fact that DC made a good movie, that didn't center around Batman, and the fact that this film was centered on a female superhero, they failed to see just how unoriginal the story actually was. As I was watching the scenes on this Island, with Diana growing up, not knowing what she really was, and leaving before she was ready, I was very much reminded of Thor, but that was just the first hour of the film. I thought things would get better but they didn't. She becomes this unexpected larger than life hero in World War I, much in the way that Captain America did in World War II. Both of them fought really bad guys who weren't the "main" bad guy behind the war, and then there is the whole God angle, which brings us right back to Thor again. The film was so well done, I think it is more than time we had a strong female hero that young girl can emulate and look up to, and I thought Gal Gadot was a breath of fresh air, who gave an outstanding performance. As far as originality goes, to me it just wasn't there, as it seems the writers took elements from two of the more popular Marvel films and mashed them together. The Bottom Line, Wonder Woman is absolutely worth seeing, however I'm all for original ideas, and I want to see something different, especially at a time when a new superhero film is coming out every month.
4 out of 12 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? | Report this
loading
An error has occured. Please try again.