Once Upon a Time In Hollywood
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This movie was awesome and as loyal to the book as it can be. The characters are all done extremely well by the young, relatively unknown cast. The portrayal of Pennywise was done very well by Bill Skarsgård. His innate ability to move his eyes individually of themselves was spectacular and terrifying all at once. This Pennywise was by far more scary then the original from the made for TV mini series. Also, thanks to modern technology, the gore and the absurdity of the story come across much better and also adds the depth that Pennywise needs to truly be a terrifying entity. My only real complaint about Pennywise is his voice. Tim Curry gave a memorable performance as the titular IT and added a spine chilling twinge to the voice. Skarsgård decided to go a different direction, but it comes off as cartoony and not scary at all. The only time it gets that horror feel is at the end battle when he has captured Bill and is threatening/bargaining with the other children. The voice gets gruff, it gets intimidating and it finally feels like the voice of something that murders for sustenance. Much better then the original with better scares, more chilling torture sequences getting the kids to fear him and the acting is much better. Keep an eye on these kids, I see big things in their future. Definite recommend, especially fans of Stephen King who have read IT.
This movie is what movies are all about. It is engaging, relatable and keeps you going for the entire duration. Does it age well with some of the lines and subject matter, of course not, but what movies from the 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s really do with the current political and global mindset. However, this film is a product of its time and its stars. Both Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert put on superb performances as the unlikeliest of lovers. Ellen Andrews is a spoiled brat daughter of a wealthy businessman who is fleeing her overbearing father to be with her husband King Westley. Pete Warne is an alcoholic reporter who accidentally falls into arguably the largest story of his life. Although their love story is not traditional, they do show they care about one another throughout their journey from Miami to New York. The symbolic Wall of Jericho, especially the falling of it at the end of the film, shows the barrier that Pete puts between the two of them that eventually cannot hold back how they truly feel for one another. Everything they put each other through eventually leads to them getting together and arguably the line of the movie.
Father Andrews: "Do you love my daughter?"
Pete: "YES!! But don't hold that against me."
This movie is a must watch, especially for those that want to see the origins of the rom-com and also see the first film to win the big 5 categories at the Oscars (Best Film, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director and Best Cinematography). Absolutely enjoyed this movie.
Entertaining, quirky and enjoyable. For its time, this film was visually stunning and the story was quite unique. It does not age well animation wise but story wise it can do what it is expected to do, entertain children for 80 minutes so parents can clean, shower, laundry, mow the lawn or whatever else they need to get done in that time. Using intellect during this film will give you headaches, so enjoy with an open mind and knowledge this is for young kids. Starring some of my favorite voice actors, including Rob Paulsen as Carl and his parents and Jim Cummings as various background characters, the cast works well in this film and you can tell they enjoyed themselves. Debi Derryberry is excellent as Jimmy Neutron, giving him an innocence about him despite his immense IQ and quirky body shape. This is an awesome family film that is not too long and can be an interesting conversation between you and your children.
Disney cannot do any wrong it seems with the MCU. They borrowed the Spider-Man property, thus ending the Andrew Garfield era, and gave us Homecoming and a cameo in Captain America: Civil War. Seeing him for the first time in the airport sequence, it looked like he was gonna be a very young version of the character and would continue to have witty quips and clever insults for his fights. Homecoming showed a much more grounded and relatable version of the character, attempting (unsuccessfully) to balance life and being a superhero. Creating a Peter Parker/Spider-Man that is apprehensive, a greenhorn and clumsy allowed for the movie to showcase him in a way that the previous 2 franchises had not. Adding the concept of Iron Man and Happy Hogan welded this movie with the MCU and allowed for the filmmakers to have Spider-Man fail in epic form and still have a happy ending due to the arrival of Iron Man and his many toys. The action sequences were very well done and showcased the acrobatics of Spider-Man. Changing the dynamics of Vulture was an interesting choice, but it was one I was not onboard for. Also, he was never referred to as the Vulture in the film, so they could have given him another moniker from the comic books and it would have worked better. Shocker only having one close range electrical punching apparatus kind of lowered his stock as well, especially after Amazing Spider-Man 2 introduced their version of the character only a few short years ago. This movie is a great addition to the MCU and also a way to reboot the character in a way that can allow for this version to have great crossovers now that the X-Men, Fantastic Four and the Avengers are all under one umbrella. It also allows for Venom and other members of the Spiderverse to have adventures with this Spider-Man through Sony's continued ownership of that property. Looking forward to Far From Home and any other collaborations we get from this franchise.
Finally, a female led superhero film that not only makes her stronger then all the men around her but focuses on her strengths as a woman and only passingly expresses her feminine wiles. When Gal Gadot debuted this character in Batman v. Superman, many people were unsure of the casting. After watching this film, I truly believe that all doubters have been fed their share of humble pie. Gadot owns this role and is superb as both Diana Prince and Wonder Woman. The landscapes of Themyscira are breathtaking. The filmmakers truly went all out trying to establish the Utopian feel and look of the Amazonian island. Contrasting this with how London, war torn Belgium and France and even Germany look shows that they really wanted to showcase the backgrounds having a personality and also giving them significance in Diana's eyes. Being unaware of just how dismal and ugly the war was shows that Diana does have a lot to learn about the world and also of man. This film looks amazing, is well acted throughout, has an interesting twist and introduced Gadot as a viable female lead. Definite recommend for anyone looking for a strong female led/directed movie.
When Guardians of the Galaxy was released in 2014, nobody could have predicted it would do as great as it did, nor could people have predicted how good the movie itself would be. Fast forward a few years and we are graced with the sequel. Similar to other sequels in the MCU, the director, writers and producers all wanted this to be bigger but not too big that things get bogged down. They sought a story that could take the characters further as a group and also showcase a single character so the story had a focal point. In this case, the movie centers around Peter Quill and his parentage. We already were introduced to Yondu in the first film and how he raised Peter into the man he became. This film took that relationship, added Kurt Russell as Ego and Peter's biological father and gave us a dynamic story about fatherhood and destiny. This film was unnecessarily humorous to the point of detriment. The visuals are spectacular and add gravitas to the scenes. This movie is a must see, not just for those ingrained in the MCU, but even those that just enjoy good movies. Cannot wait to see where they go in the third instalment and also see where they go within the overall MCU.
Overacting 101 is in session in Cavalcade. The expressions and the reactions are so overdone, it was almost comical. The actors also seemed to enjoy looking straight into the camera to deliver important lines. This movie looks great, but it falls short of being truly memorable because of the lack of cohesion in the story and the way the characters interact with one another. Some films need to be seen through the eyes of their time and this film is no different. The Great War was still fresh on everyone's minds and WWII was not even a thought in anyone's head but was on the horizon. The sinking of the Titanic was a international tragedy that many still remembered. However, in 2019, these events are so far removed from us that they seem trivial to have such importance in a movie that does not center around these events. The characters, the moments and the story does not age well and does not redeem itself in any way. As a completionist of Best Picture winners, this is required viewing but you will immediately forget about its existence as you move forward. 1933 must have been a slow year for films.
Upon reading the brief description of this movie on the RT page for the film, you would think Charlie was a misunderstood dog with a heart of gold that got stuck in with some no good mutts and died being a hero. Watching the film reveals the truth. Charlie is a conniving, manipulative, narcissistic mobster who is more interested in the almighty dollar then anything resembling compassion or love. The description states that he is sent back to Earth after death in order to perform a good deed to gain entry. This is false, as he manipulates his own life clock (a golden watch he gets as a gift right before he dies) in order to escape the afterlife. He then manipulates Anne-Marie (a young girl who can communicate with animals) into joining him and his associate Itchy. He takes her from an abusive situation with his former partner Carface and puts her into the exact same situation only with him. Also false is the return to heaven. He is told by Flo (the angel in charge of admissions) that he can never come back since he broke the rules. He is only allowed back in to heaven because of the events of the 3rd act, not because he did a simple good deed. I understand why the description would say what it says, but the inconsistencies between it and the film may leave a bad taste in some viewers mouths.
This film is insanely dark, continuing a trend with Don Bluth cartoons. The undertones of death, gambling, drinking, drugs, smoking and poverty are rampant throughout the movie. Despite being very short, there is a lot of story packed in. They never show the 2 dogs (Charlie and Carface) actually dying, but it is heavily implied, especially with seeing Carface in heaven at the end of the movie. We also see the car fly off the pier into the water, seemingly with Charlie having already been hit by the vehicle, although we do not see the body until after he has already come back from the dead. The treatment of the young girl is interesting, especially for the hero of the film. He constantly berates her and makes her feel guilty for wanting to leave Itchy and him and join a real family. This film should be watched by parents first and then make the decision whether to allow their children to watch it.
Disney during the early 2000s was not what you would call a good time for the company. This film is evidence of the downslide they were experiencing during this trying time. The story seems to rush through the various locations it spotlights, giving little to no thought in truly fleshing out any characters or destinations. I understand that attempting to showcase every major center on a trip that large would make this movie much longer, but the way they traverse the globe seems like they are more interested in throwing in as many cameos as possible without giving these actors any time to truly shine. Jackie Chan is the true star of this movie as he takes center stage with his athleticism, fight choreography and adorable abuse of the English language. Everyone else is just a character in this Jackie Chan film, but Schwarzenegger does come close to overshadowing this performance with his magnetism and overall celebrity. This is a fun movie to watch and should be enjoyed with family.
This movie was 2 hours long and nothing happened. How could a film like this squander the talent in and around the production? This was a crap shoot from the very beginning and never relented. It wanted to be the beginning of a franchise but instead it is gonna be a stand alone film. I will give the director his due, the scenery of Norway is breathtaking and many of the scenes are beautifully shot. The backdrop of Norway could have made this film watchable, but the story, the acting and the plot holes made sure that this was impossible. The ending seemed so rushed that I could not believe that was how it was ending. Seriously, he could not see the soft spot in the ice as he walked towards his prey. Not a good movie at all. Unless you're a Michael Fassbender completionist, this film is not needed at all.
A trip down memory lane with new actors, new settings, new songs and new scenes. This is what these live action reimaginings are made for. We know the characters, we know the story and we know the ending. However, this movie brings with it some new fundamentals with it that make it unique and a good re-telling of the animation. Visually, this movie is nearly flawless. The attention to detail that Disney is known for is on full display in this movie. The landscapes are breath-taking, the village feels like a small French village hundreds of years in the past and the castle with its inhabitants are immaculate. Emma Watson plays a passable Belle, but she was missing something in terms of the presence the original had. The beast looked awful and could have definitely been worked on better. The costume and makeup did the actor no favors and seemed to hinder his facial expressions and also his mobility. The characters we know and love running around looking like actual artifacts with some human features was amazing and added that sense of realism to them. The biggest take away for me was the songs and how they were handled. We had the classic songs from the animation, but we also had a few new songs that helped move the story along nicely. The song that the Beast sings after setting Belle free is chilling and emotional, thoroughly elevating the character. Adding social commentary to this film did not hurt the overall presentation but it did kinda detract from the messages within. Having the villagers be deathly afraid of a woman that not only CAN read, but LOVES reading seemed off putting and petty. Any lover of the animation will enjoy this film for the most part. Is it as perfect as the animation, no, but it has its place in film history. A definite must watch and probably the best live action enactment of the classic animations thus far.
A cornucopia of stars from this era come together in this ensemble film that chronicles a couple of days inside the Grand Hotel. Similar to the holiday movies of recent, Valentine's Day, Mother's Day and New Year's Day, we watch multiple individuals go through their lives seemingly independent of one another but are actually intermingled in the end. The central character Baron von Gaigern, played to perfection by John Barrymore (Drew Barrymore's father), welds this cast together as he wheels, deals and steals the hearts and pearls of his co-stars. This film is amazing as it briskly goes through a mere couple of days, showcasing several diverse characters as they go through heartbreak, disaster, love, lust, poverty, success and ultimately murder. This film is a must watch for aficionados and Barrymore completists.
This is an amazing portrayal of Kong that relies solely on the unbelievable atmosphere of Skull Island. It does not go with the past films and kidnap the beast so he can run roughshod through New York. The acting is superb and takes the viewer on a journey of discovery, horror and intensity on this uncharted island where anything is possible. From the magnificent scenery to the inventive and dangerous creatures inhabiting the islands, this film is as full of eye candy as any superhero film. Kong: Skull Island is a must see for any fan of Kaiju films. If the rumors of this and the previous Godzilla film starting off a cinematic universe involving the giant monsters, then I am all in. This was a fantastic ride to a land never before known about and I cannot wait to see what other marvels they bring to life.
Going into this film, I had no idea how they planned on taking the events of Furious 7 and enhancing them even further. This film took the outrageousness of this franchise and added better acting and more in depth character arcs for good measure. Charilze Theron owns the role as Cipher, a cyber-terrorist actively wanting to hold governments accountable for decisions she deems incorrect or harmful. She wishes to do this by needlessly murdering millions of people using stolen nuclear weapons. It is also revealed she was the invisible puppet-master behind the events of the previous 2 films and may have had some hands in the events of Fast Five as well. Creating the conflict within Dom in this film really works for changing up the character and also showing how the team can function without their leader. Moving forward with Cipher as a constant threat will be interesting as she is incredibly smart but arrogant and prone to overdrawing herself. Adding the baby aspect was stroke of genius as it changes every character, even the absent Brian and Mia. Naming the child Brian after the character name instead of Paul or Walker after the deceased actor was a bit of a head scratcher to me. How Dom is able to put together his final plan without Cipher knowing made absolutely no sense to me as she was inside every aspect of his life but somehow he was able to send and receive phone calls and messages without her knowing and also have a homing beacon inside his necklace on her super plane without any of her instruments picking up the signal. The movie is amazing at parts, especially the zombie cars driving around maniacally. I really enjoyed the Statham rescue scene onboard the plane and the sequence inside the prison. Looking forward to Hobbs & Shaw and even Fast 9.
Some movies move at a pace comparable to a race. Flying at break neck speed in order to try and fit as much content as humanly possible. This film, however, moves at a deliberate pace, methodically making its way through the plot and story. This causes the film to be quite boring. I found myself nodding off a couple of times during the movie and had to remind myself its only 102 minutes long.The chemistry between the two leads is nearly non-existent, as they feel like two actors going through a script instead of two characters falling in love with one another. The overall premise of Romeo & Juliet in pizzerias is a bit ridiculous, but seems to work as 2 rival pizza parlours, right next door to one another, owned by former partners/friends and their families, strive to survive in the Toronto pizza climate amidst their own bitter and sometimes petty prank wars. The stand out performances are of the grandparents, two retirees who secretly fall in love with one another and Starbucks caramel mocchiatos. Watching their story unfold made me want to watch a film about their journey instead of the one we are presented with. Overall a boring movie that does not go anywhere and ends with more questions then answers, including why Nikki chooses to stay and not pursue a career in Europe with Leo by her side, how does this affect their relationship having their grandparents married, can the fathers co-exist again after everything they've done to one another and what happens to all the women Leo has been with in the 5 years Nikki was gone, including the flight attendant we meet briefly.
This movie is dark. The overall storyline of an immigrant family fleeing turmoil in Russia and going to America with the promise of prosperity and no cats with the added bonus of losing a child on the boat ride across the Atlantic Ocean, this can be a relatable story for many people from Eastern Europe at the time of the movie (1885). By making the main characters mice and allowing for them to be hunted by a seemingly unstoppable barrage of cats, the filmmakers add extreme stakes and allow for sympathy for all those involved. This movie revolves around the Mousewicz family, especially the young son Fievel. When he is separated from his family due to his curiosity on the boat trip to America, he embarks on a rough and tough adventure through New York City to find his family. He meets friends and foes alike, Tiger (a very large tabby cat that has empathy for mice), Henri (a French pigeon living in the Statue of Liberty), Tony and Bridget ( lovers that befriend Fievel and really help him find his family), Honest John (the constantly soused mayor of the mice community), Gussie Mausheimer (the rich debutante willing to put class and status aside to rid the city of cats) and Warren T Rat (a cat dressed as a rat in order to reap the rewards of exploiting the mice and rat community). The climax of the film, before the inevitable heartwarming reunion, sees Fievel utilize a story his father always told him and his sister about a gigantic mouse in Ukraine to rid the mice of New York of several cats (sending them to Hong Kong seemingly to be eaten). This is an amazing animated film about immigration, family and hope. Definitely recommend this film, especially for families that once emigrated from Eastern Europe.
This movie is long and plodding. It gives you a lot to comprehend, a lot to digest and a lot to think about once it's done. It does not spoon feed you information and it allows for viewers to truly become immersed in the story. Based on the novella by Stephen King, we get to witness a master class in storytelling, character development and an early example of plot twists coming out of nowhere. Following the unlucky story of Andy Dufresne as he navigates the brutal, unforgiving life of a maximum security prison inmate, we get to watch this brilliant former banker manipulate his way through the system and leave those in charge believing they have him by the short and curlies when in reality he was playing them like instruments the whole time. On his journey, he is joined by Red, a man who can get things and is always there to lend a helping hand, ear or advice whenever needed. We also meet Brooks, an elderly man who has spent the majority of his life incarcerated within Shawshank's walls. As the story unfolds, we watch as Brooks leaves the prison, only to become entrenched in that life even on the outside. It leads him to suicide in a scene that is as heart-wrenching as it is educational (showcasing the downside of long terms in prison and becoming institutionalized). We also lay witness to Andy weaselling himself in to the financials of the prison and creating a persona that technically does not exist. Everything culminates in the escape of the century, a man desperate for freedom crawling through the sewage pipe, not knowing what is on the other side, not caring just wanting out. Red so poignantly states, "He crawled through 500 yards of shit and came out clean on the other side." This is a movie that needs to be on everybody's to watch list.
NOSTALGIA ALERT! NOSTALGIA ALERT! Adam West (RIPD), Burt Ward and Julie Neymar are back and man do they sound old. This was the first thing out of my wife's mouth and I had to agree with her. You could tell 50 years had passed and it showed in how the voices came across. Especially Julie, her Catwoman was not as seductive as she would have liked it to be. However, this film was beautiful and supplanted itself firmly in the pantheon of the original 1960s Batman show. The quirky jokes, nonsensical banter, character tropes and how Batman and Robin seem to figure out the plans of the villains with only the most diluted and inane clues were plentiful and truly took me back to a much simpler time. I liked the little joke about the 3 Catwomen when Batman was hit in the head.It was well done and showed that the writers and director were true fans of the 60s TV show. This film is pretty long but the story keeps it up and allows for the fans to enjoy themselves. Although extremely convoluted, as most of the stories in the 60s were, this film feels like an episode for the first half and a film for the second half. Giving the fans a chance to see Batman as the villain and also see Robin try to outsmart his mentor whilst teaming up with Catwoman and attempting to trust her was truly ingenious and well written. I believe that people should watch the original 60s movie first, get introduced to the characters in this cartoon and then you can really enjoy the nuances and ridiculousness of this film.
Sitting down to watch this movie, with only having watched the original Lego Movie and not Ninjago, I was extremely surprised by how much I enjoyed this film. It is a visual master-class and truly needs to be seen to be believed. Due to its very nature, Lego Batman was able to do things with the characters and the settings that a traditional live action simply could not. Seeing many references to the past movies and television shows was amazing and well instituted and I believe the casting was spot on. Michael Cera plays a fantastic Robin, showcasing his innocence and his vulnerability through his voice and the little nuances he added. Rosario Dawson brings her hard hitting voice to Barbara Gordon and simply put, steals the show. Her voice brings out the fierceness of Barbara but when she needs to be quieter and more reserved, Dawson delivers in spades. Will Arnett, Bojack Horseman himself, is magnificent as Batman. His way of talking and the inflections he provides make this a memorable version of the caped crusader. Going in to this film, I was very apprehensive about Zach Galifianakis as the Joker. Having now seen the film and been able to listen to the character and what Zach brings to the table with his voice, I can say that my apprehension was ill-conceived. He was brilliant as a more emotional version of the Joker and someone who truly was diabolical, manipulative and arrogant. This a wonderful film that audiences of all ages can enjoy and I believe this should be added to the vast list of must see movies.
Welcome to San Francisco. A city with no visible Animal Control Officer, very lax attitudes towards strays and off-leash animals, very little to no traffic within the city limits and even on side roads and apparently home to a lab where stolen dogs are experimented on. Once again, Chance, Shadow and Sassy find themselves separated from their family by circumstances that could have been remedied if they simply listened. In the original it was we cannot bring you with us, stay at this ranch and we will be back in a couple weeks. Going into this trip to Canada, the family decides the animals need to join them so as not to recreate that scenario. The animals do not listen to the simple instructions they are given, refuse the tranquilizer pills to help them sleep through the flight and subsequently overreact to the point of breaking out of the kennels they were placed in at the airport and running around the fairway looking for the plane with the family on it. This nonsense goes as far as sitting on the runway in front of an oncoming plane believing it will stop and pick them up. From there, we get the tired line from Shadow that he knows where to go and just follow him. Just like the first film, he seriously underestimates how far they travelled to get to the airport and thus begins the adventure through San Francisco's pet friendly streets. As the trio wander through the surprisingly empty streets and alleyways of San Francisco, we meet other strays and a couple domesticated dogs. I will give this film credit, we get a lot more animal characters to invest in, but in the end, we are still rooting for the original 3 animals. The hijinks within the city, ranging from encounters with a pitbull and boxer duo looking to cause trouble to the dog snatchers looking to make apparently between $10-$15 a dog from the lab. My biggest fault with the film is the ending. I felt like the writers had gotten themselves into a corner they could not seem to get out of, how to reunite the family. Having them driving behind the truck that runs over Chance seemed lazy to me and really rushed the reunion. Harkening back to the original film with the whole Shadow may be dead scenario at the end, they played up the possible dead dog situation and gave a very weak pay-off. They even went as far as to reprise the shocking reveal of a barking dog coming into the yard. With the inclusion of Delilah, it seems to throw the family out of whack as now their is more dogs then children. I understood they may have been setting up the three-quel with having her around to give birth to a littler of puppies while perhaps the mother was pregnant with her 4th child, but giving her a name she recognized and enjoyed having within the dog community seemed moot since the family would rename her whatever they wanted. If you loved the original and wish to see where the story went, this film gives a small glimpse into that future, but overall this is not a film that needs to be seen.