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Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

(2014)
17 days ago via Movies on iPad

The best comic movie I've seen in quite awhile, and is the only one that comes to mind whose sequel improves on its original. I don't know why it was decided to release this in April rather than the summer. I suppose they didn't want it stepping on the toes of a franchise they feel is more worthy. They were mistaken to do so. The story is a good one, and it's execution is excellent. It deals with contemporary moral/political issues such as governmental invasion of privacy, use of drones, and the dangers of surrendering liberty in the name of stability in a fairly sophisticated manner without too heavy a hand. None of this gets in the way of the terrific action scenes which were largely shot in downtown Cleveland and snarled traffic for weeks. I am glad to say it was all worthwhile (you're welcome, moviegoing world!)

Sinbad: The Fifth Voyage

Sinbad: The Fifth Voyage

(2014)
2 months ago via Movies on iPad

A gleefully cheesy B movie with amateurish acting, primitive special effects, and a director who tries to make up what he lacks in talent with his enthusiasm. It is like some Harryhausen fans got together and decided to make a movie for fun. They are somewhat effective, but I still would have liked to have a script that was a bit more coherent and editing that was a bit more competent. It seems to have been dumped into theaters with zero promotion to die a quick death, but at least it will have the cachet of having had a theatrical release.

Closed Circuit

Closed Circuit

(2013)
2 months ago via Movies on iPad

Political thrillers are the sort of movie I always hope for the best from, look forward to, and really want to like, but usually they disappoint. This is one of those. It looks great and the cast does what it can, but the script is weak. Still, I'll probably watch it again years from now hoping I simply misremembered how it disappointed me. Always the optimist!

Under Fire

Under Fire

(1983)
2 months ago via Movies on iPad

I found this movie sanctimonious 30 years ago and I find it so now. I still like it simply because I like the subject, the period, and the cast; but for all its alleged moral conundrums and shades of gray, at its heart it is really a self-congratulatory liberal happy-movie. In it a character who supports Somoza exclaims, "In twenty years we'll see who's right!" Thirty years later I'm more confident than ever he was. Reagan and Bush caught a lot of flack for their policies, but the record speaks for itself. By 1993 practically the only country in all of Latin America that was not a democracy was that erstwhile favorite of the Left, Cuba. Perhaps Hollywood will make a movie based on that, but I doubt it.

Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones

Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones

(2014)
2 months ago via Movies on iPad

Each PARANORMAL ACTIVITY is a little inferior to its predecessor, but this one seems to have finally jumped the proverbial shark. Setting it in the barrio is a bit of a change-up, but the story between the five movies is so convoluted it isn't worth trying to figure out. The worst sin is that it just isn't scary.

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