Periodic Movie Review

Talk about anything under the sun or stars - but keep it civil. This is where we really get to know each other. Everyone is welcome, and invited!
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Postby Jayelle » Tue Feb 15, 2011 11:08 am

Eat, Pray, Love: long, preachy, slow-paced, and boring. I felt too bad about turning it off but I kind of wish I had and had walked my dogs instead.
I felt the same. Tried to watch in on the plane and just ended up turning it off - boooooring.
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Postby Gravity Defier » Fri Feb 18, 2011 8:48 pm

So, I may or may not have read the Ramona series (Cleary) growing up, I honestly can't remember, and I haven't read any as an adult, so I can't speak to the accuracy but Ramona and Beezus was so much better than I expected. It was relevant, sweet, and funny.
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Postby Luet » Fri Feb 18, 2011 9:23 pm

I agree totally. I did read some or another of the Ramona books but I don't remember them. I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed the movie.
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Postby Gravity Defier » Sun Feb 20, 2011 12:29 pm

The (new) Karate Kid was fantastic. Where it borrowed from the source material, it did so lovingly and I thought the story benefited from essentially combining the first two films of the original trilogy. The same fun stuff is there -the Cobra instead of the Crane, pick up the jacket instead of sand the floor or paint the fence or wax freaking on- as well as the serious stuff, like the backstory to the Miyagi based character. Jackie Chan did well with the role and it was nice seeing him play something other than the comedic fodder of Chris Tucker.

At the end, I had a hard time not telling Chen, I believe was his name, to sweep the leg and I couldn't stop singing "You're the best...arouuund, no one's ever going to keep you down" but I think that it strengthens my love of the first while standing strong on its own speaks highly of the quality here. I don't like it more, or less even; I think they are just different enough to exist on their own and be appreciated for their own merits. I'll be curious, though, to watch this again in a decade and see how laughably dated the music is. The only song I can see not aging is "Higher Ground" but Stevie Wonder makes great music and RHCP did a brilliant cover.


So, yeah. If you haven't seen this and love -or even just appreciate- your 80s movies, you should like this.
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Sun Feb 20, 2011 2:22 pm

That's almost exactly what I thought about it, Alea. I really enjoyed it!
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Postby Luet » Sun Feb 20, 2011 4:47 pm

I actually liked the new one more but for some reason I didn't have any strong emotional connections to the first one. It just never did much for me. I must have seen it at the wrong age or something.
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Postby Gravity Defier » Mon Mar 07, 2011 8:12 pm

The Adjustment Bureau was part Matrix, part A Life Less Ordinary, part Stranger Than Fiction, and a part Timer. Just a dash of each, really. It was surprisingly low-key and while it did seem a little...underdeveloped or not entirely fleshed out, I enjoyed it and would recommend it to people who like their sci-fi to be on the lighter side.
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Postby locke » Mon Mar 07, 2011 11:56 pm

Take me Home Tonight was all sorts of eighties-tastic in a really wonderful way. It's a goofy, sweet comedy with boobs, investment bankers, cocaine, tom cruise sunglasses, and big hair, what's not to like?

Not a great movie, but one that will be a staple of cable television for quite a long time. Great, great soundtrack of course. I do think that Topher's big speech at the end hit home, but the film never lets the poignant overwhelm the laughs.

the weakest part of the film was age of the actors, we're asked to believe they were all 22ish, just finished college aged.
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Postby Luet » Tue Mar 08, 2011 7:20 pm

I'm watching Babe right now, again. I absolutely love the movie but I had no idea that it was nominated for the Best Picture Oscar in 1995, losing to Braveheart. This movie just makes me happy. And the song in it (If I Had Words) is the ringtone on my phone. :)
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Postby Jayelle » Tue Mar 08, 2011 8:00 pm

I sing that song as a lullaby to my girls!
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Postby Paul » Tue Mar 08, 2011 8:54 pm

Anyone else seen The Kings Speech yet? I expected to be bored, but it was actually an amazing movie.
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Postby fawkes » Tue Mar 08, 2011 8:57 pm

The Adjustment Bureau was part Matrix, part A Life Less Ordinary, part Stranger Than Fiction, and a part Timer. Just a dash of each, really. It was surprisingly low-key and while it did seem a little...underdeveloped or not entirely fleshed out, I enjoyed it and would recommend it to people who like their sci-fi to be on the lighter side.
I really enjoyed it. I agree that it could have been fleshed out a bit more, but at the same time I found it easy to follow and pretty uncomplicated. A nice little time-waster.
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Postby Janus%TheDoorman » Tue Mar 29, 2011 2:17 pm

Sucker Punch: (Light spoilers for general plot structure)

If I were given absolute creative license, and actually knew anything about film-making, the movie I'd make would look a lot like this. I'm not completely in love with it, but more often than any other movie I was thinking, "Yes, that is exactly what I wanted to happen right there, and you pulled it off marvelously." And the soundtrack is wonderful.

The fucking mayor. He's only in there for like 30 seconds, and has no spoken lines, and it's absolutely amazing.

Rather than present you with a contemporary, logical movie where certain elements could be compared with something more dramatic or visceral, and stopping there, letting your personal familiarity with such situations, the movie instead completely replaces the trope with the substance. When it comes time for the characters to steal a lighter from the Warden, what we actually see is them assaulting a castle defended by orcs to snatch fire crystals from the throat of a dragon.

In this way, it manages to be both a thrilling action movie and a movie character drama without compromising either. It doesn't feel like a one with scenes from the other shoehorned in and badly acted to avoid criticism of either being mindless violence or dull plot progression. It balances the two excellently
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Postby Luet » Tue Mar 29, 2011 3:27 pm

Huh, that's the first positive review I've heard for Sucker Punch. My husband really wanted to see it but then decided to wait for dvd after hearing a lot of negative reviews. I'm glad to hear you liked it!
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Postby Janus%TheDoorman » Tue Mar 29, 2011 6:33 pm

Yeah, I intentionally held off on reading reviews before I got my thoughts down. I guess I went in just wanting to be entertained for a few hours, and this was a very entertaining movie. This isn't an "impressive" movie. This isn't Inception, or Lord of the Rings. It's not a great plot, story, or characters. The methods it uses to engage and entertain you are cheap tricks, but they work. You can bitch and moan about how Zach Snyder has used what talent he has to make the cinematic equivalent of an MSG soaked burger and fries instead of an exquisite filet mignon, but insisting that the burger doesn't taste good because of its crudeness is disingenuous.
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Wed Mar 30, 2011 6:45 am

You know, I know I'm in the minority, but I really wasn't terribly impressed with Inception. It was good, I'm glad I saw it, but I don't feel any need or desire to watch it again.
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Postby Gravity Defier » Wed Mar 30, 2011 9:04 pm

"Sometimes we see ourselves as so small but people out there see us as so big, so beautiful." Irma, Waste Land


I posted a link to an article here about portraits made out of garbage and tonight, while browsing Netflix Instant Watch movies, stumbled upon the documentary.

Waste Land is something I would whole-heartedly recommend to most anyone I know. It was at times funny, sad yet optimistic, and informative and it hit so many "interests," from political, environmental/geographical, socio-economical, etc. to artistic, I can't imagine it not having something that would appeal to most people. I laughed, I cried (really), I thought these people were inspirational and beautiful.
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Postby Gravity Defier » Fri Apr 01, 2011 9:28 pm

I don't have a real review type of post so I thought I'd just point out that I saw Source Code tonight and I loved it. It was a fun action-Sci Fi and the setting was pretty fantastic if you ask me. The only thing I might get nit-picky about is how they handle it at the end but it's not surprising, given the Sci Fi trope being used.
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Postby Young Val » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:57 am

I saw Hanna over the weekend and I LOVED it.

I can easily see why it's such a divisive movie, but it struck all the right chords with me. I love fairy tales and I love action movies and I love bildungsromans and this was such a wonderful combination of all three.

Haunting soundtrack (although electronica is not typically my thing), beautiful, beautiful cinematography, a thoroughly engaging story that is equal parts thrilling, touching, funny, and sad. Even the less-than-great aspects of it (and there were a few) can't deter me.

I just loved, loved, loved this movie and can't stop thinking about it.
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Postby Petrie » Wed Apr 27, 2011 8:32 pm

Megamind, as far as I'm concerned, didn't get nearly as much attention as it deserved. It was funny and heartfelt, and I loved the message it had. It got compared quite a bit to Despicable Me for some reason (okay, the whole idea of a lovable and redeemable -through love- baddy is kind of similar) but the movies were different enough. However, if I had to pick one over the other, I think Megamind would be it.
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Fri May 13, 2011 6:02 pm

I'm cheating a little, but I'm looking forward to reviewing the "Bump to Breastfeeding" DVD the midwife gave me.
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Postby Luet » Fri May 13, 2011 6:11 pm

I highly recommend "The Business of Being Born". It's available streaming on Netflix. So good! Lot's of home and water births but told in a fairly balanced way.
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Postby Jayelle » Fri May 13, 2011 6:20 pm

I highly recommend "The Business of Being Born". It's available streaming on Netflix. So good! Lot's of home and water births but told in a fairly balanced way.
I do too! Such a good doc.
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Fri May 13, 2011 6:23 pm

I don't have Netflix, but I'll see if I can dig it up! I'm hoping to have a home birth (all midwives in the UK are also RNs, which is awesome), but it will depend on how our health is. I'm not married to the idea. But I do like it - it worked out so, so well for my older sister, and hospitals make me very anxious still since my mom was sick. Plus I hate hate hate things that go BEEP.
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Postby Petrie » Mon Jun 06, 2011 4:14 pm

I got in four movies this weekend: The Kids Are Alright, You Again, The King's Speech, and an indie called Good Dick.

I won't say much about the first three. The Kids Are Alright was funny, authentic and perhaps naively hopeful in some ways but that's not such a bad thing, is it?

You Again...was a corny and sometimes stupider than hell chick-flick/comedy. Right up my alley, not for most of this crowd.

The King's Speech was great. I don't know how much of it was historically accurate but it was amusing and intriguing and I'm bad with these reviews, so just trust me that it was worth seeing.


Okay, now to the one I want to focus on.

Good Dick. The basic plot involves a woman in her early 20s who is addicted to soft porn, who meets this guy at the rental store who ends up wanting to "help" her. Help, save, rescue, fix, whatever. She is also a bit agoraphobic and just overall a very anti-social person. Basically, she does need help and you might guess as to why she has these issues in the first place.

Now, my problem with this movie isn't that she needed help or even that he was the one who helped her. My problem is with how he helped her. It was manipulative and creepy and almost predatory, even if he did have good intentions. I'd really like to know if my take on that is completely off the mark but I somehow doubt this movie will be seen by anyone I know.


But watch the first and third movies. Great stuff there.
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Postby mr_thebrain » Mon Jun 06, 2011 5:24 pm

haven't seen the kids are alright, won't see you again, and the kings speech failed to hold my attention. it was alright, but i felt like most of the movie was supposed to be quaint or whatever because of swearing.

good dick i saw last year. it was a good, and off kilter movie. i enjoyed it well enough. i think.

the dude was definitely creepy, and predatory. i think the movie was more about how they both needed help and no matter how messed up people are, they can find a sort of 'happiness'

but yeah, very dysfunctional. and weird.
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Postby Petrie » Mon Jun 06, 2011 5:40 pm

the kings speech failed to hold my attention.
Really? I was enthralled by the power play between Albert and Lionel. To have the nerve to tell royalty we are equals...god, I got such a kick out of it throughout the whole movie.
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Postby Jayelle » Thu Jun 09, 2011 6:57 am

Saw the new X-Men movie last night. (minor spoilers)

Things I liked:
-Great casting, great acting (by most)
-Fun plot, great action scenes
-Seeing Charles and Erik play chess on several occasions
-Cameos by Wolverine and future-Mystique
- The "call them X-Men" line was delivered BEAUTIFULLY. It could have been done in multiple bad ways.

Things I didn't like:
-January Jones was way too flat as Emma Frost - she's supposed to be the ultimate seductress.
-Did they really have to kill the only black guy right away? It seemed unnecessary.
-Sadly, Magneto's helmet will always look a bit goofy in live action.
-The heroes giving themselves names was a bit ham-fisted.

So, overall, I loved it. Nitpicky problems, but much better then most of the other Xmen movies.
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Postby Mich » Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:24 am

January Jones was way too flat as Emma Frost.
Interesting choice of words, there. :D Do you mean flat as in poorly acted? I haven't seen the movie.
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Postby Eaquae Legit » Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:29 am

January Jones was way too flat as Emma Frost.
Interesting choice of words, there. :D Do you mean flat as in poorly acted? I haven't seen the movie.
Clearly a certain demographic isn't looking for subtlety in its seduction. :p
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Postby Jayelle » Thu Jun 09, 2011 9:44 am

January Jones was way too flat as Emma Frost.
Interesting choice of words, there. :D Do you mean flat as in poorly acted? I haven't seen the movie.
Heehee. Yes. Her acting was flat. Other parts of her were ample.

Though, if you go by the comics, she was massively over-dressed as well.
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Postby Caspian » Fri Jun 10, 2011 12:33 pm

The more I think about it, the more the death of the only black guy angers me. The inspiration for X-Men is the Civil-Rights movement. Mutants are symbolic stand-ins for black people. But the movie, which makes this connection really unsubtle by being set in the 60s, perpetuates exactly the racial politics that the story is supposed to be arguing against by 1) pointlessly killing the only black character and 2) limiting the amount of work available for the only black actor they hired.

It's actually disgusting, especially since the rest of the movie was so good.
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Postby neo-dragon » Fri Jun 10, 2011 1:36 pm

*X-Men: First Class Spoilers*

Yes, the irony of Darwin's death was not lost on me, but I was mainly just amused and added it to the list of "black guy dies first" movies.

But seriously, Darwin has this amazing and unique power and they only scratched the surface of it. I wonder if they just couldn't think of scenarios to have him use it in, but then that raises the question of why they chose to include him at all.

On the other hand I wonder if perhaps he's not actually dead and will return in a sequel. Since his power is the ability to adapt and survive anything (which also adds to the irony of him being the only hero who dies) they can always say that he temporarily adapted into an energy form or something like that and eventually recorporealizes. To those present it would look like he simply exploded. They did make a point of mentioning that there was nothing to bury...



In any case, First Class may very well be my favourite non-Batman comic book movie. I'll have to see how well it stands the test of time in my mind.

ETA: Oh, and I thought Emma Frost was lame too. Not even that attractive to me.
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Postby CezeN » Fri Jun 10, 2011 4:31 pm

*X-Men: First Class Spoilers*

Yes, the irony of Darwin's death was not lost on me, but I was mainly just amused and added it to the list of "black guy dies first" movies.

But seriously, Darwin has this amazing and unique power and they only scratched the surface of it. I wonder if they just couldn't think of scenarios to have him use it in, but then that raises the question of why they chose to include him at all.

On the other hand I wonder if perhaps he's not actually dead and will return in a sequel. Since his power is the ability to adapt and survive anything (which also adds to the irony of him being the only hero who dies) they can always say that he temporarily adapted into an energy form or something like that and eventually recorporealizes. To those present it would look like he simply exploded. They did make a point of mentioning that there was nothing to bury...



In any case, First Class may very well be my favourite non-Batman comic book movie. I'll have to see how well it stands the test of time in my mind.

ETA: Oh, and I thought Emma Frost was lame too. Not even that attractive to me.
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Postby Petrie » Sun Jun 12, 2011 5:29 pm

I'm pretty sure I disagree with Darwin's death being pointless and while it might be ironic, I also saw it as kind of fitting in the context of Civil Rights.

I do agree with Emma Frost being kind of lame, though.


Overall, there were parts that really moved me (the Nazi camp, training, at the beach after the "battle") but as a whole, if I'm not only holding it up against other comic movies but movies in general, I thought it was only okay. No nerdgasm from me.
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