Monthly Archives: January 2014

That Awkward Moment

That Awkward Moment Movie Review

R, 94 m., 2014

Zac Efron (Jason), Miles Teller (Daniel), Michael B. Jordan (Mikey), Imogen Poots (Ellie), Mackenzie Davis (Chelsea), Jessica Lucas (Vera), Addison Timlin (Alana), Josh Pais (Fred), Evelina Turen (Sophie), Karen Ludwig (Mrs. Rose), Tina Benko (Ellie’s Mom), Joseph Adams (Ellie’s Dad), Lola Glaudini (Female Boss (Sharon)), John Rothman (Chelsea’s Father), Barbara Garrick (Chelsea’s Mother). Directed by Tom Gormican and produced by Scott Aversano, Justin Nappi, Andrew O’Connor, Kevin Turen. Screenplay by Gormican.

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Labor Day

Labor Day Movie Review

PG_13, 111 m., 2013

Kate Winslet (Adele), Josh Brolin (Frank), Gattlin Griffith (Henry), Tobey Maguire (Adult Henry), Tom Lipinski (Young Frank), Maika Monroe (Mandy), Clark Gregg (Gerald), James Van Der Beek (Officer Treadwell), J.K. Simmons (Mr. Jervis), Brooke Smith (Evelyn), Brighid Fleming (Eleanor), Alexie Gilmore (Marjorie), Lucas Hedges (Richard), Micah Fowler (Barry), Chandra Thomas (Bank Teller). Directed by Jason Reitman and produced by Helen Estabrook, Lianne Halfon, Reitman, Russell Smith, and Nicole C. Taylor. Screenplay by Reitman, based on the novel by Joyce Maynard.

The buzz has been bad since last year’s festival circuit with negative report piling upon negative report for months. Well, now the returns are in and my verdict is…the emperor has no clothes. In this case, it’s the critics who are naked, not the filmmaker. Can you remember the last time so many critics, mainstream and non-mainstream alike, ganged up on a film as if it was a harbinger of the apocalypse only for the film itself to be not only not bad but quite good (I feel in the minority about Ridley Scott’s The Counselor, for example)? Yet nevertheless, the Tomatomator hovers around 30% with a Rotten majority, while the ever-so-slightly more forgiving Metacritic score is 51/100 with mostly mixed reviews. What in the hell is going on here?

Such as it is, Jason Reitman’s Labor Day is, in my humble opinion, far from the disaster it’s suggested to be. Reitman, adapting a novel by Joyce Maynard (of To Die For), tells the story of one Labor Day weekend in a small New England town, circa 1987. Adele (Kate Winslet, whose previous January release was her truly disastrous role in the ensemble kerfuffle known as Movie 43) is a divorced single mom raising her son Henry (Gattlin Griffith of Changeling, among other films) alone in a quiet, somber household in a pretty, rural suburb.

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Nebraska

Nebraska Movie Review

R, 115 m., 2013

Bruce Dern (Woody Grant), Will Forte (David Grant), June Squibb (Kate Grant), Bob Odenkirk (Ross Grant), Stacy Keach (Ed Pegram), Mary Louise Wilson (Aunt Martha), Rance Howard (Uncle Ray), Tim Driscoll (Bart), Devin Ratray (Cole), Angela McEwan (Peg Nagy), Glendora Stitt (Aunt Betty), Elizabeth Moore (Aunt Flo), Kevin Kunkel (Cousin Randy), Dennis McCoig (Uncle Verne), Ronald Vosta (Uncle Albert). Directed by Alexander Payne and produced by Albert Berger and Ron Yerxa. Screenplay by Bob Nelson.

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I, Frankenstein

I, Frankenstein Movie Review

PG_13, 92 m., 2014

Aaron Eckhart (Adam), Yvonne Strahovski (Terra), Miranda Otto (Leonore), Bill Nighy (Naberius), Jai Courtney (Gideon), Socratis Otto (Zuriel), Aden Young (Victor Frankenstein), Caitlin Stasey (Keziah), Mahesh Jadu (Ophir), Steve Mouzakis (Helek), Nicholas Bell (Carl Avery), Deniz Akdeniz (Barachel), Chris Pang (Levi (as Christopher Pang)), Kevin Grevioux (Dekar), Bruce Spence (Molokai). Directed by Stuart Beattie and produced by Sidney Kimmel, Gary Lucchesi, Andrew Mason, Tom Rosenberg, Richard S. Wright (as Richard Wright). Screenplay by Beattie, based on a screen story by Kevin Grevioux and Beattie, based on the Darkstorm Studios graphic novel by Kevin Grevioux and characters by Mary Shelley.

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Gimme Shelter

Gimme Shelter Movie Review

PG_13 , 101 m., 2013

Vanessa Hudgens (Agnes ‘Apple’ Bailey), Brendan Fraser (Tom Fitzpatrick), Rosario Dawson (June Bailey), James Earl Jones (Frank McCarthy), Dascha Polanco (Carmel), Stephanie Szostak (Joanna Fitzpatrick), Emily Meade (Cassandra), Ann Dowd (Kathy), Candace Smith (Marie Abeanni), Tashiana Washington (Destiny / Princess), Rachel Mattila Amberson (Nicky ‘Pink Friday’ (as Rachel Mattila)), Eddie Schweighardt (Dustin), Hector Lincoln (June’s Boyfriend), Sheila Tapia (Officer Ganz), Peter Epstein (Taxi driver). Directed by Ron Krauss and produced by Krauss and Jeff Rice. Screenplay by Krauss.

Ron Krauss’ Gimme Shelter, or (as it should be known) Apple Bailey’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, continues the ‘deglamification’ of former High School Musical star Vanessa Hudgens. Continue reading

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Ride Along

Ride Along Movie Review

PG_13, 99 m., 2014

Ice Cube (James Payton), Kevin Hart (Ben Barber), John Leguizamo (Santiago), Bruce McGill (Lt. Brooks), Tika Sumpter (Angela Payton), Bryan Callen (Miggs), Laurence Fishburne (Omar), Dragos Bucur (Marko), Gary Owen (Crazy Cody), Jacob Latimore (Ramon), Jay Pharoah (Runflat), Benjamin Flores Jr. (Morris the Kid (as Benjamin ‘Lil P-Nut’ Flores)), Eric Benson (Marko’s Gunman), Greg Rementer (Marko’s Gunman), Anna House (Cafeteria Lady). Directed by Tim Story and produced by Matt Alvarez, Larry Brezner, Ice Cube, William Packer. Screenplay by Greg Coolidge and Jason Mantzoukas and Phil Hay & Matt Manfredi, based on a story by Coolidge.

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Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit Movie Review

PG_13, 105 m., 2014

Chris Pine (Jack Ryan), Keira Knightley (Cathy Muller), Kevin Costner (Thomas Harper), Kenneth Branagh (Viktor Cherevin), Lenn Kudrjawizki (Constantin), Alec Utgoff (Aleksandr Borovsky), Peter Andersson (Dimitri Lemkov), Elena Velikanova (Katya), Nonso Anozie (Embee Deng), Seth Ayott (Teddy Hefferman), Colm Feore (Rob Behringer), Gemma Chan (Amy Chang), Aleksandar Aleksiev (Cherevin’s Bodyguard), Andrew Byron (Cherevin’s Bodyguard), Derek Lea (Cherevin’s Bodyguard). Directed by Kenneth Branagh and produced by David Barron, Lorenzo di Bonaventura, Mace Neufeld, Mark Vahradian. Screenplay by Adam Cozad and David Koepp, based on characters created by Tom Clancy.

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Devil’s Due

Devil's Due Movie Review

R89 m., 2014

Allison Miller (Samantha McCall), Zach Gilford (Zach McCall), Sam Anderson (Father Thomas), Roger Payano (Cab Driver), Vanessa Ray (Suzie), Bill Martin Williams (Ken), Geraldine Singer (Sally), Julia Denton (Natalie), Colin Walker (Stanley), Madison Wolfe (Brittany), Joshua Shane Brooks (Braedon), Aimee Carrero (Emily), Robert Belushi (Mason), Donna Duplantier (Dr. J. Ludka), DeMaris Gordon (Psychic). Directed by Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett and produced by John Davis. Screenplay by Lindsay Devlin.

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Lone Survivor

Lone Survivor Movie Review

R, 121 m., 2013

Mark Wahlberg (Marcus Luttrell), Taylor Kitsch (Michael Murphy), Emile Hirsch (Danny Dietz), Ben Foster (Matt ‘Axe’ Axelson), Yousuf Azami (Shah), Ali Suliman (Gulab), Eric Bana (Erik Kristensen), Alexander Ludwig (Shane Patton), Rich Ting (James Suh), Dan Bilzerian (Healy), Jerry Ferrara (Hasslert), Rick Vargas (Crew Chief), Scott Elrod (QRF SEAL), Gregory Rockwood (Chinook Pilot #1), Ryan Kay (Chinook Pilot #2). Directed by Peter Berg and produced by Sarah Aubrey, Randall Emmett, Akiva Goldsman, Norton Herrick, Stephen Levinson, Barry Spikings, and Mark Wahlberg. Screenplay by Berg, based on the book by Marcus Luttrell and Patrick Robinson.

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The Legend of Hercules

The Legend of Hercules Movie Review

PG_13, 99 m., 2014

Kellan Lutz (Hercules), Gaia Weiss (Hebe), Scott Adkins (King Amphitryon), Roxanne McKee (Queen Alcmene), Liam Garrigan (Iphicles), Liam McIntyre (Sotiris), Rade Serbedzija (Chiron), Johnathon Schaech (Tarak), Luke Newberry (Agamemnon), Kenneth Cranham (Lucius), Mariah Gale (Kakia), Sarai Givaty (Saphirra), Dimiter Doichinov (King Galenus / Champion #1), Nikolai Sotirov (King Tallas), Radoslav Parvanov (Half Face / Champion #3). Directed by Renny Harlin and produced by Boaz Davidson, Harlin, Danny Lerner, and Les Weldon. Screenplay by Sean Hood, Daniel Giat, Harlin and Giulio Steve.

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Inside Llewyn Davis

Inside Llewyn Davis Movie Review

R, 104 m., 2013

Oscar Isaac (Llewyn Davis), Carey Mulligan (Jean), Justin Timberlake (Jim), Ethan Phillips (Mitch Gorfein), Robin Bartlett (Lillian Gorfein), Max Casella (Pappi Corsicato), Jerry Grayson (Mel Novikoff), Jeanine Serralles (Joy), Adam Driver (Al Cody), Stark Sands (Troy Nelson), John Goodman (Roland Turner), Garrett Hedlund (Johnny Five), Alex Karpovsky (Marty Green), Helen Hong (Janet Fung), Bradley Mott (Joe Flom). Directed by Ethan Coen and Joel Coen and produced by the Coens, and Scott Rudin. Screenplay by the Coens.

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Her

Her Movie Review

 

R, 126 m., 2013

Joaquin Phoenix (Theodore), Lynn Adrianna (Letter Writer #1), Lisa Renee Pitts (Letter Writer #2), Gabe Gomez (Letter Writer #3), Chris Pratt (Paul), Artt Butler (Text Voice (voice), May Lindstrom (Sexy Pregnant TV Star), Rooney Mara (Catherine), Bill Hader (Chat Room Friend #2 (voice), Kristen Wiig (SexyKitten (voice), Brian Johnson (OS1 Commercial Lead), Scarlett Johansson (Samantha (voice), Amy Adams (Amy), Matt Letscher (Charles), Spike Jonze (Alien Child (voice) (as Adam Spiegel)). Directed by Spike Jonze and produced by Megan Ellison, Jonze, and Vincent Landay. Screenplay by Jonze.

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Cold Comes the Night

Cold Comes the Night Movie Review

R, 90 m., 2013

Alice Eve (Chloe), Bryan Cranston (Topo), Logan Marshall-Green (Billy), Ursula Parker (Sophia), Leo Fitzpatrick (Donnie), Erin Cummings (Amber), Robin Taylor (Quincy (as Robin Lord Taylor)), Sarah Sokolovic (Gwen), Marceline Hugot (Denise), Stephen Sheffer (Jacques), Robert Prescott (Detective McKenney), Ashlie Atkinson (Social Worker), Dylan Chalfy (Police Officer), Horny Horny Horny Duck (Mr. Jones). Directed by Tze Chun and produced by Mynette Louie and Trevor Sagan. Screenplay by Chun & Osgood Perkins & Nick Simon.

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August: Osage County

August: Osage County Movie Review

R, 121 m., 2013

Meryl Streep (Violet Weston), Julia Roberts (Barbara Weston), Chris Cooper (Charlie Aiken), Ewan McGregor (Bill Fordham), Margo Martindale (Mattie Fae Aiken), Sam Shepard (Beverly Weston), Dermot Mulroney (Steve Huberbrecht), Julianne Nicholson (Ivy Weston), Juliette Lewis (Karen Weston), Abigail Breslin (Jean Fordham), Benedict Cumberbatch (Little Charles Aiken), Misty Upham (Johnna Monevata), Will Coffey (Sheriff Deon Gilbeau), Newell Alexander (Dr. Burke), Jerry Stahl (Liquor Store Owner). Directed by John Wells and produced by George Clooney, Jean Doumanian, Grant Heslov, and Steve Traxler. Screenplay by Tracy Letts, based on his play.

August: Osage County Movie Poster

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