Monthly Archives: February 2014

Movie Review: Cowboys and Aliens

[ COWBOYS AND ALIENS POSTER ]This was on TV the other day and it was the only thing I could find. Couple that with the fact I was too lazy to get out of my bed to put in a movie of my own and that’s how you get a Cowboys and Aliens movie review.

Jake Lonergan (Daniel Craig) wakes up in the middle of the desert and doesn’t remember anything, not even his name. Adding insult to injury, he has a large metal object on his wrist and he can’t get it off.

I still remember seeing this film in theaters and I was moderately excited after the trailer. It was an interesting concept, putting aliens and cowboys together, although I wasn’t sure how that was going to become a fair fight, but isn’t that why we see movies, so we can see what happens?

Daniel Craig’s a solid actor and then you have the great Harrison Ford doing his rough ‘n ready charade which while clichéd at least he’s trying.

The action scenes are average as are the visuals and there’s not enough of either. I just don’t feel like this film is going beyond the basics here, which is unusual for a Jon Favreau film. Elf, the Iron Man films, and Zathura are all fun to watch and experience time and time again, (the first two more so than the latter) but this just isn’t. The plot struggles because once again, the main character doesn’t know who he is.

I don’t know who came up with the idea of having a main character who doesn’t know who he is, but it just doesn’t work. If the main character doesn’t know who he is, the audience’s time is wasted while the plot directs the character to all of his main attributes and helps the character figure out who he is, something the script should have been able to tell the actor portraying him when he signed up for the role. That’s what screenwriters are for, writing the characters. When you write characters, then you have the potential for, I don’t know, a story or an actual plot that goes somewhere relevant. This movie has the same problem that Total Recall had and the same problem that the Bourne films have, something I will be sure to note when I review them. If the main character doesn’t know himself, how can I get to know him?

I want to connect to the characters but it’s really hard to when Craig doesn’t know the difference between up and down and Ford’s fighting to create anything original with an unoriginal character, literally an impossible task. The screenwriters barely scratch the surface of the characters and if Ford can’t make the character come alive then it’s probably because there is nothing there to liven in the first place. Try as he might, there’s just no substance there. As for Craig’s character, Jake Lonergan, I can’t tell you much more about the character at the end of the movie that I didn’t already know in the first 15 minutes. There’s no dynamic change here, nor does the film ever cite a reasonable reason for why Jake made a volatile shift in character and morality.

Olivia Wilde’s succeeding as eye candy and not much else because the dialogue that goes through her is corny. Speaking of which, this whole film is corny, only taking away from a film that’s trying to be serious but just can’t pull it off.

Once again, if you’re new to my blog,  I’ve always ranked movies on a scale of 0-100 (I don’t know why, I just always have). Here’s the grading scale.

 90-100  It’s a great movie and definitely one worth buying. (The Secret Life of Walter MittyThe Green MileThe Lord of the Rings: The Two TowersThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Mission Impossible)

80-89   It was a pretty good movie and definitely one worth seeing, but it doesn’t quite scratch my top ten percentile. (Iron ManLone SurvivorThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the RingThe Next Three DaysBasic)

70-79   It’s okay but I’ve seen better. It has its moments, but it has its flaws, too. (21 Jump StreetEscape PlanCaptain America: The First AvengerDawn of the DeadFlyboys)

60-69   It’s got plenty wrong with it but I still got enjoyment out of this one. (Pacific RimThe Long Kiss GoodnightDisaster Movie)

50-59   This movie isn’t intolerable but it’s not blowing my mind either. I’m trying really hard to get some sort of enjoyment out of this. (AliensAlien ResurrectionFull Metal JacketThorYou’re Next)

40-49   This movie is just mediocre. It’s not doing anything other than the bare minimal, so morbidly boring that sometimes I’m actually angry I watched this. (Patriot GamesThe Great GatsbyPitch BlackAlienSerendipity)

30-39   Definitely worse than mediocre, the 30’s ironically define the 1930’s, full of depression, lack of accomplishments, poverty and just so dumb. (The ContractPride and PrejudiceRedemption)

20-29   What did I just watch? Cliches, stupidity, nothingness, did I mention stupidity? Just…wow. (The Sum of All FearsThor: The Dark World)

0-19      Watching this movie resulted in one or more of the following: seizure, loss of brain cells, falling asleep/unconsciousness, feel you wasted your time/day, accomplished nothing for you, left the movie knowing less about it then you did going into it, constantly asking yourself why you came to see this movie, or near-death experience. In short, staring at a wall was just as entertaining as watching this movie. This movie deserved a sticker or a label that said, “WARNING: EXTREME AMOUNT OF SUCKAGE.” (Midnight CowboyDark FuryAlien 3Open Grave)

My score for Cowboys and Aliens: 49.

An intriguing premise, Cowboys and Aliens falters in its execution. The action is over-hyped, the dialogue lacking, and the plot is stretched thin over a movie that outlasts its welcome with its 135-minute running time.

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Movie Review: Mission Impossible

[ MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE POSTER ]Mission Impossible?! We’ll see about that!

Tom Cruise is special agent Ethan Hunt and after a mission gone wrong turns the CIA against him, Hunt starts his own mission to discover who set him up.

When you think of Harrison Ford, you think of Star Wars and Indiana Jones. When you think of Arnold Schwarznegger, you think of the Terminator films and when you think of Sylvester Stallone, you think of the Rambo and Rocky series. Moving on, the Mission Impossible films are the highlights of Tom Cruise’s career, at least for me. With Mission Impossible being such a distinct saga, Cruise’s action bonanza and utilization of Hunt’s iconic character shot him into stardom or at least into the Hollywood spotlight a little more so than he already was.

Despite Cruise’s controversial personal life, Cruise is one of my favorite actors, with Mission Impossible serving as exhibit A. He’s talented enough to turn personas on paper into three-dimensional characters, fully embodying the nature of the individual roles he takes on.

While perhaps similar to the plots of James Bond films, Mission Impossible still carries some creativity, complexity and ingenuity so the viewer is not taken along the path of familiarity and clichéd action films. It’s a distinct illustration of the super spy and one worth seeing if for some reason you’ve never seen it before. Regardless of your specific reason, I forgive you.

Hunt’s serious, ambitious and skilled in the arts of super spies, which provide for some cool action scenes and anxious plot mystery during the cinematic thriller. It’s engaging and tension-building and I don’t know how you can’t be having fun being a part of it.

Cruise is aided by a concrete cast that includes Jon Voight and Ving Rhames who serve as Hunt’s mentor and computer-wiz, respectively. The rest of the supporting cast does what it needs to do but most aren’t on the screen long so they can only do so much. What they can’t do Cruise does because he’s Ethan Hunt. What can’t he do?

Once again, if you’re new to my blog,  I’ve always ranked movies on a scale of 0-100 (I don’t know why, I just always have). Here’s the grading scale.

 90-100  It’s a great movie and definitely one worth buying. (ScroogeThe Secret Life of Walter MittyThe Green MileThe Lord of the Rings: The Two TowersThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King)

80-89   It was a pretty good movie and definitely one worth seeing, but it doesn’t quite scratch my top ten percentile. (Iron ManLone SurvivorThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the RingThe Next Three Days, Basic)

70-79   It’s okay but I’ve seen better. It has its moments, but it has its flaws, too. (21 Jump StreetEscape PlanCaptain America: The First AvengerDawn of the DeadFlyboys)

60-69   It’s got plenty wrong with it but I still got enjoyment out of this one. (Pacific RimThe Long Kiss GoodnightDisaster Movie)

50-59   This movie isn’t intolerable but it’s not blowing my mind either. I’m trying really hard to get some sort of enjoyment out of this. (AliensAlien ResurrectionFull Metal JacketThorYou’re Next)

40-49   This movie is just mediocre. It’s not doing anything other than the bare minimal, so morbidly boring that sometimes I’m actually angry I watched this. (Patriot GamesThe Great GatsbyPitch BlackAlienSerendipity)

30-39   Definitely worse than mediocre, the 30’s ironically define the 1930’s, full of depression, lack of accomplishments, poverty and just so dumb. (The ContractPride and PrejudiceRedemption)

20-29   What did I just watch? Cliches, stupidity, nothingness, did I mention stupidity? Just…wow. (The Sum of All FearsThor: The Dark World)

0-19      Watching this movie resulted in one or more of the following: seizure, loss of brain cells, falling asleep/unconsciousness, feel you wasted your time/day, accomplished nothing for you, left the movie knowing less about it then you did going into it, constantly asking yourself why you came to see this movie, or near-death experience. In short, staring at a wall was just as entertaining as watching this movie. This movie deserved a sticker or a label that said, “WARNING: EXTREME AMOUNT OF SUCKAGE.” (Midnight CowboyDark FuryAlien 3Open Grave)

My score for Mission Impossible: 93.

Mission Impossible is hardcore action hero fun. If you don’t see it, you’re missing out.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Movie Review: Basic

[ BASIC POSTER ]A 2003 mystery-thriller with John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson? You got it.

I’ve seen Travolta in plenty of films and he always produces as does the illustrious Jackson. It would be hard for this film to fail given these two actors in the same film but I’ve said that about quite a couple of films that I’ve reviewed and I was proven wrong.

There’s a difference with this one though: I’ve seen it before. Ha!

A Ranger training exercise in Panama goes terribly wrong when only two of the seven come back alive and one is seen killing another. Colonel Styles (Timothy Daly) doesn’t have the utmost confidence that Captain Julia Osborne (Connie Nielsen) can find out what really happened so he calls in a friend, an experienced interrogator named Tom Hardy (Travolta), who’s currently being investigated on suspicion of bribery.

The two people who come back alive are Ray Dunbar and Levi Kendall. Dunbar is the one seen killing his fellow ranger while Kendall is injured during the skirmish.

The plot has the potential to be confusing because Hardy is getting different accounts of what happened from Dunbar and Kendall, but it wasn’t for me. The dialogue can be strained at times because when Dunbar and Kendall tell their respective stories, they give us a flashback and show characters yelling over the hurricane, meaning this isn’t one of those movies where you only have to be half involved to know what’s going on. Nearly everything said involves some sort of plot development, whether it be through Dunbar and Kendall’s accounts of what happened or character interactions.

This film features uncertainty and apprehension as the audience tries to figure out what really happened. While you don’t know what’s going on, it’s not frustrating because you can tell the pieces of the puzzle are coming together.

Travolta is charismatic and authoritative and Jackson even more so. It’s almost as if they’re competing with each other but sadly aren’t on-screen together. However, they’re both dynamic and likable even if they’re rough around the edges.

Once again, if you’re new to my blog,  I’ve always ranked movies on a scale of 0-100 (I don’t know why, I just always have). Here’s the grading scale.

 90-100  It’s a great movie and definitely one worth buying. (ScroogeThe Secret Life of Walter MittyThe Green MileThe Lord of the Rings: The Two TowersThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King)

80-89   It was a pretty good movie and definitely one worth seeing, but it doesn’t quite scratch my top ten percentile. (PoseidonIron ManLone SurvivorThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the RingThe Next Three Days)

70-79   It’s okay but I’ve seen better. It has its moments, but it has its flaws, too. (21 Jump StreetEscape PlanCaptain America: The First AvengerDawn of the Dead, Flyboys)

60-69   It’s got plenty wrong with it but I still got enjoyment out of this one. (Pacific RimThe Long Kiss GoodnightDisaster Movie)

50-59   This movie isn’t intolerable but it’s not blowing my mind either. I’m trying really hard to get some sort of enjoyment out of this. (AliensAlien ResurrectionFull Metal JacketThorYou’re Next)

40-49   This movie is just mediocre. It’s not doing anything other than the bare minimal, so morbidly boring that sometimes I’m actually angry I watched this. (Patriot GamesThe Great GatsbyPitch BlackAlienSerendipity)

30-39   Definitely worse than mediocre, the 30’s ironically define the 1930’s, full of depression, lack of accomplishments, poverty and just so dumb. (The ContractPride and PrejudiceRedemption)

20-29   What did I just watch? Cliches, stupidity, nothingness, did I mention stupidity? Just…wow. (The Sum of All FearsThor: The Dark World)

0-19      Watching this movie resulted in one or more of the following: seizure, loss of brain cells, falling asleep/unconsciousness, feel you wasted your time/day, accomplished nothing for you, left the movie knowing less about it then you did going into it, constantly asking yourself why you came to see this movie, or near-death experience. In short, staring at a wall was just as entertaining as watching this movie. This movie deserved a sticker or a label that said, “WARNING: EXTREME AMOUNT OF SUCKAGE.” (Midnight CowboyDark FuryAlien 3Open Grave)

My score for Basic: 89.

You think the movie’s over and then there’s a surprise twist. Then you think it’s over, only to be proven wrong again. And then you’re practically getting out of your chair for a stretch because you’re like it’s got to be done now, and then the biggest twist of all jumps out and grabs you. It’s not a chore sitting through the 98 minute running time nor is it a bore. Samuel L. Jackson and John Travolta are a sure thing when it comes to entertaining in Basic. All they have to do is tell the story right.

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Movie Review: Flyboys

[ FLYBOYS POSTER ]James Franco leads a cast of unknowns in a story of the Lafayette Escadrille, an air squadron composed of American volunteers who wanted to fight in World War I before the U.S. entered the war.

Franco stars as Blaine Rawlings, a Texan whose family ranch is foreclosed. Rawlings goes to a movie theater after letting his anger out on the banker’s face and the sheriff says he’ll give Rawlings a half hour before he serves the warrant for his arrest. The last thing Rawlings sees before he leaves the movie theater? A commercial about the boys flying over seas. Rawlings figures he’ll give it a shot.

The film does a good job of introducing all of his fellow airmen to the party and for the most part each one is distinguishable from the others. The cast gets us to care about their individual characters but I don’t really connect with them as people. They’re too clichéd. There’s the guy who wants to bring honor to his family, another who wants to say thanks to his country, the guy who comes from a family of soldiers, the guy who can’t do anything right. .. try to tell me you haven’t heard of these characters before. If you haven’t, you’re either a liar or you’ve watched like ten movies in your entire life. Franco’s taking on of Rawlings’ personality is the one thing holding the film together and he’s not doing anything over the top to do so. He’s just playing his part better than everyone else, which sad to say isn’t saying much.

Through a series of unfortunate events he discovers an attractive French girl named Lucienne and falls for her despite the obvious language barrier. Their romance is sluggish at times but eventually becomes something worth caring about.

The film shifts between the romance and the dogfights in the sky, which are probably the most well-done part of this film. The action’s realistic and while not the most intense dogfights I’ve watched, at least I care about them, which is more than I can say for some of the dogfights I’ve seen in films. I also enjoy the music in this film.

However, where this film drops the ball and prevents it from being a better-than-average movie is the character depth and the dialogue. As I mentioned earlier, there’s no depth to these characters and even with Rawlings it feels like we’re just scratching the surface of something that could have been so much more if there had been a better script and if there had been better actors behind those scripts. The dialogue can be strained at times and at times it feels like exposition comes from the same character over and over, as if he’s just hanging in the background waiting for Rawlings to mention something just so he can explain what it is to us, something I have a hard time seeing a soldier doing. Once again, when the romantic part of this film involves two people who have trouble even communicating with each other, that also doesn’t help. I don’t think it’s unfair when I say it’s hard to believe two people can fall in love when their conversations can barely pass the third grade language barrier. Just doesn’t seem very plausible to me.

Once again, if you’re new to my blog,  I’ve always ranked movies on a scale of 0-100 (I don’t know why, I just always have). Here’s the grading scale.

 90-100  It’s a great movie and definitely one worth buying. (ScroogeThe Secret Life of Walter MittyThe Green MileThe Lord of the Rings: The Two TowersThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King)

80-89   It was a pretty good movie and definitely one worth seeing, but it doesn’t quite scratch my top ten percentile. (PoseidonIron ManLone SurvivorThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the RingThe Next Three Days)

70-79   It’s okay but I’ve seen better. It has its moments, but it has its flaws, too. (The Usual Suspects21 Jump StreetEscape PlanCaptain America: The First AvengerDawn of the Dead)

60-69   It’s got plenty wrong with it but I still got enjoyment out of this one. (Pacific RimThe Long Kiss GoodnightDisaster Movie)

50-59   This movie isn’t intolerable but it’s not blowing my mind either. I’m trying really hard to get some sort of enjoyment out of this. (AliensAlien ResurrectionFull Metal JacketThorYou’re Next)

40-49   This movie is just mediocre. It’s not doing anything other than the bare minimal, so morbidly boring that sometimes I’m actually angry I watched this. (Patriot GamesThe Great GatsbyPitch BlackAlienSerendipity)

30-39   Definitely worse than mediocre, the 30’s ironically define the 1930’s, full of depression, lack of accomplishments, poverty and just so dumb. (The ContractPride and PrejudiceRedemption)

20-29   What did I just watch? Cliches, stupidity, nothingness, did I mention stupidity? Just…wow. (The Sum of All FearsThor: The Dark World)

0-19      Watching this movie resulted in one or more of the following: seizure, loss of brain cells, falling asleep/unconsciousness, feel you wasted your time/day, accomplished nothing for you, left the movie knowing less about it then you did going into it, constantly asking yourself why you came to see this movie, or near-death experience. In short, staring at a wall was just as entertaining as watching this movie. This movie deserved a sticker or a label that said, “WARNING: EXTREME AMOUNT OF SUCKAGE.” (Midnight CowboyDark FuryAlien 3, Open Grave)

My score for Flyboys: 73.

Flyboys isn’t throwing any punches that we didn’t see coming a mile away nor performing any unique or creative tricks with its plot, but it’s still an entertaining watch when it all comes down to it. I’ve got it on DVD for the occasional watch.

Tagged , , , , , ,

Movie Review: Open Grave

My pillow was calling my name and my eyes were so tired after watching the disappointing You’re Next. However, my brain was asking for something more, something that made the evening more eventful than it had been. The last time I had watched two new movies in one night was when I watched Alien (terrible) and Sharknado (terribly…hilarious!!!) and I thought maybe the same thing could happen here if I were to watch a second one. The movie that popped into my head: Open Grave. An indie film, Open Grave’s trailer looked interesting. It left me wondering what had just happened, but similar to You’re Next, got me curious. It looked like a chaotic mess for sure, but I’ve seen movies portray themselves as such but when I actually went to see the movie it came together quite nicely.

Open Grave…is not one of these films. It’s a chaotic mess at the beginning and it’s still a chaotic mess at the end. The director’s name (Gonzalo Lopez-Gallego) is more complex than this script is. You can’t even get a plot summary of the film on Wikipedia, which is probably because there is none. Sharlto Copley plays John, a man who wakes up in a mass grave and doesn’t have any idea who he is or how he got here. He’s helped out by a mute Asian girl who quickly runs away and then John finds a house with a bunch of people who are all in the same predicament: they have no idea what’s going on. Conveniently, neither does the audience, but most of us aren’t bored yet because the movie just started after all, right? There’s plenty of time for improvement.

So eventually everyone remembers their name, and one guy named Nathan discovers he knows a bunch of different languages but not the language that the mute Asian girl is writing everything in because once again, convenience calls in this situation. So the group walks around and finds a bunch of dead people tied to trees with barbed wire and a bunch of other fun stuff that’s really not all that important at all, just creepy stuff to keep us interested.

Eventually they find some abandoned buildings but none of it really makes sense. At this point, I’m getting a little impatient. When is something relevant going to happen? One of them dies, and then nothing happens again….FOREVER. This movie doesn’t know north from south or which way it wants to go with its story. Nothing they do leads to anything at all. Who are the characters? After about five eternities we find out their occupation but that’s all! These characters are hollow and don’t have a clue what’s going on just like the audience doesn’t have a clue what’s going on. Sharlto Copley has shown me he has talent in District 9 and Elysium so why he would agree to star in this I don’t know.

Memories slowly start to come back to some of the party but once again, not really anything substantial. Just a bunch of stuff that really doesn’t pertain to anything, just more fluff.

They try to bring emotions into it towards the end but it’s like “Really? You guys haven’t known what’s been going on this whole film and now you’re going to start judging each other and turning on the waterworks? Are you kidding me?”

Once again, if you’re new to my blog,  I’ve always ranked movies on a scale of 0-100 (I don’t know why, I just always have). Here’s the grading scale.

 90-100  It’s a great movie and definitely one worth buying. (ScroogeThe Secret Life of Walter MittyThe Green MileThe Lord of the Rings: The Two TowersThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King)

80-89   It was a pretty good movie and definitely one worth seeing, but it doesn’t quite scratch my top ten percentile. (PoseidonIron ManLone SurvivorThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the RingThe Next Three Days)

70-79   It’s okay but I’ve seen better. It has its moments, but it has its flaws, too. (The Usual Suspects21 Jump StreetEscape PlanCaptain America: The First AvengerDawn of the Dead)

60-69   It’s got plenty wrong with it but I still got enjoyment out of this one. (Pacific RimThe Long Kiss GoodnightDisaster Movie)

50-59   This movie isn’t intolerable but it’s not blowing my mind either. I’m trying really hard to get some sort of enjoyment out of this. (AliensAlien ResurrectionFull Metal JacketThor, You’re Next)

40-49   This movie is just mediocre. It’s not doing anything other than the bare minimal, so morbidly boring that sometimes I’m actually angry I watched this. (Patriot GamesThe Great GatsbyPitch BlackAlienSerendipity)

30-39   Definitely worse than mediocre, the 30’s ironically define the 1930’s, full of depression, lack of accomplishments, poverty and just so dumb. (The ContractPride and PrejudiceRedemption)

20-29   What did I just watch? Cliches, stupidity, nothingness, did I mention stupidity? Just…wow. (The Sum of All FearsThor: The Dark World)

0-19      Watching this movie resulted in one or more of the following: seizure, loss of brain cells, falling asleep/unconsciousness, feel you wasted your time/day, accomplished nothing for you, left the movie knowing less about it then you did going into it, constantly asking yourself why you came to see this movie, or near-death experience. In short, staring at a wall was just as entertaining as watching this movie. This movie deserved a sticker or a label that said, “WARNING: EXTREME AMOUNT OF SUCKAGE.” (Midnight CowboyDark FuryAlien 3)

My score for Open Grave: 10.

This movie is like a giant unopened Christmas present and you unwrap all the paper and scramble through all the unnecessary tissue paper looking for your present and after looking through it for five minutes you come to the realization that there is no present. Open Grave is dreadful, atrocious, deplorable and every other synonym for terrible you can find. No one involved with this visual representation knows what is going on and the fact that this is even categorized as a movie disgusts me. I know some YouTube filmmakers who make better movies than this. This movie needs to be buried because no one wants to see this. (see what I did there?) It is a huge waste of time and if you know what’s good for your well-being, you won’t see it.

*SPOILER ALERT* IF YOU DON’T WANT THE MOVIE SPOILED, STOP READING!!!

*SPOILER’S EDITION*

They eventually, after watching what feels like three hours of your life slow-walk away, reveal that these people are a group of scientists looking for a cure to a disease. John’s the lead scientist and his “cure” knocks the subject out and causes them to lose their memory so it still needs some tinkering. The whole film the group is trying to figure out why the 18th is circled on the calendar and it ends up the military is coming in on the 18th and they’re going to kill everyone, no survivors. So everyone gets killed, not that I could care less or anything like that, except for John and his significant other. I honestly don’t care enough to look at the cast list to find out her name and neither should anyone else so moving on. John and what’s-her-face jump into the mass grave and inject themselves with this memory-loss stuff and John wakes up again after an unknown amount of time and once again, doesn’t know what’s going on, meaning the whole process starts all over again. It’s like the director tried to make the movie come full circle, except that the movie never left the starting point.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Movie Review: You’re Next

I’m not intrigued by horror movies most times. I’m not able to comprehend the thrill of watching people be savagely murdered nor am I able to attain the adrenaline rush the horror fanatics seem to always refer to in their reviews. When I think of a fun movie, I don’t think of a slasher flick, nor do I understand those who couple the two together. Doesn’t mean they’re wrong or I’m right, I just don’t get it.

Nonetheless, similar to my slight interest in The Purge (although the more reviews I read the less interested I got), I thought You’re Next had some potential. Those masks are creepy! Add to the fact that I’m not pissing my pants nor am I totally appalled by what I just saw, and it’s got me curious, although not enough to go to a theater and see it. So when I was playing Modern Warfare 3 on my friend’s Xbox 360, killing everyone that got in my way because I was in the zone, and he mentioned watching it and taking a break, despite my reservations toward doing so, I was like “what the heck?” So I sat down to watch a horror flick for the first time in a long, long time.

As I said wrote earlier, I read some reviews on it so I did know a little of what happens although it had been a while since I read them so the movie wasn’t entirely spoiled for me.

A family reunion doesn’t last long before visitors from Animal Farm (get the reference?) decide to stop by for a killer-party (haha, I’m so funny).

The acting in this is egregious, putrid, and sickening (I’m soooo punny!). One of the main problems I have with horror films is that they’re so stereotypical. The characters are so bland, unoriginal, and are ill-fated (PUN) as soon as they hit the big screen. The family already comes across as a bunch of snobs that you already want to die and we’re only like fifteen minutes in, yet another stereotype the horror genre loves to take a ride on. Films like these want audiences to want the victims to die, which is incredibly sadistic although very true for some of these movies. It is just a movie after all, right? As I was saying, just no acting ability here asides from our warrior princess Erin, who’s a survivalist nut because her dad is paranoid and they lived in an Australian outback, which came out of thin air but whatever. I guess as long as they give you some sort of reason why she’s so good at killing things, even if it’s totally moronic, everything’s cool. Erin’s played by Sharni Vinson, who shows some character depth even if it is a minute portion and there is some talent there. If given a better script, perhaps she could do more than she did here.

A weak storyline but I already mentioned this is as clichéd as Samuel L. Jackson is an African-American right? I’m playing, I love Samuel L. Jackson, but who wrote this script? Did an intern write this or what happened here?

The kills themselves are the only things that show the least bit of creativity and they don’t get so gory that you want to throw up, which I greatly appreciated. Only some of the kills are actually creative, with most of them being ones that Stevie Wonder could have saw coming (man, I’m in a good mood today!!!).

Once again, if you’re new to my blog,  I’ve always ranked movies on a scale of 0-100 (I don’t know why, I just always have). Here’s the grading scale.

 90-100  It’s a great movie and definitely one worth buying. (ScroogeThe Secret Life of Walter MittyThe Green MileThe Lord of the Rings: The Two TowersThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King)

80-89   It was a pretty good movie and definitely one worth seeing, but it doesn’t quite scratch my top ten percentile. (PoseidonIron ManLone SurvivorThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Next Three Days)

70-79   It’s okay but I’ve seen better. It has its moments, but it has its flaws, too. (The Usual Suspects21 Jump StreetEscape PlanCaptain America: The First AvengerDawn of the Dead)

60-69   It’s got plenty wrong with it but I still got enjoyment out of this one. (Pacific RimThe Long Kiss GoodnightDisaster Movie)

50-59   This movie isn’t intolerable but it’s not blowing my mind either. I’m trying really hard to get some sort of enjoyment out of this. (Along Came PollyAliensAlien ResurrectionFull Metal JacketThor)

40-49   This movie is just mediocre. It’s not doing anything other than the bare minimal, so morbidly boring that sometimes I’m actually angry I watched this. (Patriot GamesThe Great GatsbyPitch BlackAlienSerendipity)

30-39   Definitely worse than mediocre, the 30’s ironically define the 1930’s, full of depression, lack of accomplishments, poverty and just so dumb. (The ContractPride and PrejudiceRedemption)

20-29   What did I just watch? Cliches, stupidity, nothingness, did I mention stupidity? Just…wow. (The Sum of All FearsThor: The Dark World)

0-19      Watching this movie resulted in one or more of the following: seizure, loss of brain cells, falling asleep/unconsciousness, feel you wasted your time/day, accomplished nothing for you, left the movie knowing less about it then you did going into it, constantly asking yourself why you came to see this movie, or near-death experience. In short, staring at a wall was just as entertaining as watching this movie. This movie deserved a sticker or a label that said, “WARNING: EXTREME AMOUNT OF SUCKAGE.” (Midnight CowboyDark FuryAlien 3)

My score for You’re Next: 54.

There is some “entertainment”, if that’s even what you would call it, to be had with You’re Next, but if you’re looking for a horror movie that will leave a lasting impression on you, this is not the one you’re looking for. Far too cliched and unsurprising at many points, this film doesn’t have you jumping out of fright or out of entertainment. The only thing this movie really accomplishes is causing you to raise your shoulders every time you go into public from the fear of having your throat slit for the next few days.

*SPOILER ALERT* IF YOU DON’T WANT THE MOVIE SPOILED, STOP READING!!!

*SPOILER’S EDITION*

The family is also stereotypical because they’re just so stupid. It’s like they’re trying to kill themselves! Once the terrorist Tariq takes a bolt to the forehead, everyone gets up and runs around like a bunch of dumbfounded kindergarteners until Drake takes one in the back of the shoulder. Only then does everyone decide to get on the floor. Guess an arrow to the head wasn’t enough warning: “hey…hey…hey you people….you might wanna…..I don’t know….get down?! Anyone at all? No takers? Okay, here comes another one!!!”

When they try their phones and realize they can’t get a signal, they decide that someone should run outside and try to get a signal and call for help with no weapon or protection of any sort. Unless you have a world-class Olympic sprinter in your family (looking at you, Usain Bolt), this is not a good idea at all!!! You don’t know how many are out there but I’d be surprised if they outnumber you cause there’s like nine of you right now, but whatever, go for it. Probably won’t work out well for whoever decides to run. Then the daughter, Aimee, runs herself to death literally, running her throat into garrote wire. Don’t mean to say I told you so, but…

The mother has something wrong with her although we never find out what it is because it’s a horror flick. It’s not trying to make us smarter or anything. Definitely a mental problem although this whole family seems to have one because they decide to put her upstairs on the bed ALONE BY HERSELF?!!! Have they never watched a horror movie before and/or they oblivious to common sense or anything resembling it?!!! You stay alone you die, everyone knows that, even the homeless people got educated on that lesson (man I’m terrible today, truly sorry if I’m offending everyone, but aaaaahhhhh! So stupid!!!)

By the way, I called the guy coming out from under the bed. Way too easy. Then everyone comes up and I’m like, “well, if I was him, I’d go back under the bed again so they should probably check under there when they’re all in the room so he has no way out”. Then I was like, “Ohh, they chose secret option B, come into the room to find your mother/wife dead as if you didn’t have even the slightest thought that this could happen, then go back downstairs.” Seems legit, I guess, oh wait, normal brain function activating…..NOOOOOO!!! You stupid people!!! Why does no one have a weapon yet except Erin?! Do you want to live?!

Drake’s wife goes back upstairs to check the room, more specifically under the bed, ALONE AND UNARMED! You know who are really easy to kill? People who are alone and unarmed. Just wanted to throw that out there in case you didn’t know that, lady. She finds he’s still under there and runs back downstairs screaming, doesn’t let anyone know “oh, by the way there’s a psychopath under the bed upstairs”, instead running out the front door with a homing beacon screaming out of her vocal chords in case no one knows where she is.

I was surprised Zee and Felix were in on the murder escapade, because my money was on Erin’s boyfriend, Crispian, who I ended up being right about anyway.

Final thing: Erin is probably just as much a psychopath as these murderers are because she’s better at their jobs, which is killing people! She doesn’t just kill these people, she makes them unrecognizable. Like I get it, you’re scared, you don’t want to die, but you seem pretty calm right now smashing that log into that guy’s face and that meat tenderizer into the back of that guy’s head. Then she puts the pairing knife through Zee’s head and breaks a blender, impales it into Felix’s head, and then turns the power on for an added bonus so we can enjoy a brain slurpee? What?! How is this chick normal? This movie is chaotic.

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Movie Review: The Next Three Days

[ NEXT THREE DAYS POSTER ]My city of Pittsburgh serves as the background of a Russell Crowe prison break film.

A happy school teacher with a great marriage and a young son, John Brennan’s life is thrown into chaos when his wife, Laura, (Elizabeth Banks) is convicted of murdering her boss. Flash forward a couple of years and Brennan (Crowe) has used all the legal means to try to get her out. Refusing to give up, Brennan decides to take a look at the other side of the coin, and by that I mean getting her out by any means necessary, no matter how low he has to go to get it done.

A film that’s keystone is its main character, Crowe does not seem at all bothered by the pressure on his shoulders or his character’s. He keeps his cool as does Brennan despite the me-against-the-world mentality he is forced to take on as well as the fear that surely embraces him throughout the whole suspenseful epic. He’s risking everything for the woman he loves and while noble, he does risk losing his son. Some will say his reasoning is self-centered, careless, and insensitive although the hopeless romantic in me will tend to take the opposite approach. Growing up with a parent in prison I’m sure is brutalizing and extremely difficult and I’m sure doesn’t help with child development. His son, Luke, needs his mom, and John just wants his family back. If it means having to forgo the life he’s living and all who are in it in order to reunite his family, so be it.

The film is suspenseful and can be slow-moving at times although I never got bored because the movie keeps me thinking as well. Would you do this or would you do that, if this situation happened to you? Would you be willing to sacrifice it all for the woman/man you love or would the risks be too great to take on? It’s a film with originality and mind-altering questions that cause you to learn more about the people around you as well as yourself and when a movie can do that, I feel it’s worth admiring.

At the same time, these questions can only linger in one’s mind for so long before you want to see more of the movie and sometimes the movie isn’t ready to move on when you want it to which can be moderately aggravating at times. Aside from Crowe, the supporting cast has its ups and downs but none fit perfectly in their respective niches.

Once again, if you’re new to my blog,  I’ve always ranked movies on a scale of 0-100 (I don’t know why, I just always have). Here’s the grading scale.

 90-100  It’s a great movie and definitely one worth buying. (ScroogeThe Secret Life of Walter MittyThe Green MileThe Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King)

80-89   It was a pretty good movie and definitely one worth seeing, but it doesn’t quite scratch my top ten percentile. (The Hobbit: The Desolation of SmaugPoseidonIron ManLone SurvivorThe Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring)

70-79   It’s okay but I’ve seen better. It has its moments, but it has its flaws, too. (The Usual Suspects21 Jump StreetEscape PlanCaptain America: The First AvengerDawn of the Dead)

60-69   It’s got plenty wrong with it but I still got enjoyment out of this one. (Pacific RimThe Long Kiss GoodnightDisaster Movie)

50-59   This movie isn’t intolerable but it’s not blowing my mind either. I’m trying really hard to get some sort of enjoyment out of this. (Along Came PollyAliensAlien ResurrectionFull Metal JacketThor)

40-49   This movie is just mediocre. It’s not doing anything other than the bare minimal, so morbidly boring that sometimes I’m actually angry I watched this. (Patriot GamesThe Great GatsbyPitch BlackAlienSerendipity)

30-39   Definitely worse than mediocre, the 30’s ironically define the 1930’s, full of depression, lack of accomplishments, poverty and just so dumb. (The ContractPride and PrejudiceRedemption)

20-29   What did I just watch? Cliches, stupidity, nothingness, did I mention stupidity? Just…wow. (The Sum of All FearsThor: The Dark World)

0-19      Watching this movie resulted in one or more of the following: seizure, loss of brain cells, falling asleep/unconsciousness, feel you wasted your time/day, accomplished nothing for you, left the movie knowing less about it then you did going into it, constantly asking yourself why you came to see this movie, or near-death experience. In short, staring at a wall was just as entertaining as watching this movie. This movie deserved a sticker or a label that said, “WARNING: EXTREME AMOUNT OF SUCKAGE.” (Midnight CowboyDark FuryAlien 3)

My score for The Next Three Days: 86.

The originality of the film combined with the unique questions it puts in front of its audience and the acting abilities of Russell Crowe keep this movie interesting, intriguing, and most importantly, entertaining. At times you want more but more often than not, you’re happy with what you’re given.

Tagged , , , , , ,
CCY's Movie Reviews

Movies Worth Sharing!

Days Gone

Meeting the insanity that is reality

epileptic moondancer

Imperfection is Perfection.

vinnieh

Movie reviews and anything else that comes to mind

emmakwall (explains it all)

Film & soundtrack reviews, good humour and lists

pickoftheflix

EMPIRE'S 301 GREATEST MOVIES OF ALL TIME REVIEWED - to watch or not to watch?

Shit Jon Gruden Says

"Spider 2 Y Banana Shake?"

kylerehm005

I will show the world( or whoever reads this) my passion for movies, sports, life and Jesus

ramblingsofsam

A place for sharing, fleshing out, and fine-tuning thoughts and ideas

Mr. Movie's Film Blog

Film and Anime Reviews, new and older releases!

Thomas J

My Journey Through Film

Snap Crackle Watch!

A blog dedicated to television and movies

The Cinema Monster

unparalleled film reviews, news, and top 10s

Silver Screen Serenade

Praising the high notes and lamenting the low notes of all things film and television

Cinema Parrot Disco

Musings on Mainly Movies from a Table 9 Mutant

wordsofwistim

For those searching for wistim regarding life, sports, movies and more