Monday, November 24, 2014

Short review: Mockingjay Part 1

Grade: B

Katniss wakes in District 13 and is chosen to be the face of the revolution.

Some good action scenes. The stuff they added is fun but unnecessary as is the whole splitting into two movies. Really nervous about the fact they split this into two movies and are ignoring a MAJOR plot point.

Jennifer Lawrence, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Julianne Moore and many more.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Short Review: Interstellar

Grade: A

A team travel through a mysterious wormhole to try to save humanity.

Still processing. Great story. Great visuals. Great representation of science. Could lose about 20 minutes.

Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway, Michael Caine and many many more.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Short review: Big Hero 6

Grade: A+

A young robotics prodigy uses science and technology to find the person responsible for his brother's death.

Amazing movie. Great story. Heart in all the right places. Very funny and tons of fun.

Ryan Potter, Scott Adsit, TJ Miller, Genesis Rodriguez, Jamie Chung, James Cromwell, Alan Tudyk, Damon Waynes Jr. And more.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Short review: John Wick

Grade: A

This is why you don't mess with a man's car or his dog.

The action scenes are amazing. Better than The Raid. Story is actually really fun and there is just the right amount of humor splashed throughout.

Keanu Reeves, Michael Nyqvist, Willem Dafoe and more.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Short review: Gone Girl

Grade: A+

A man's wife goes missing and evidence is piling against him.

David Fincher does a great job directing. Affleck gives his best performance yet. Crazy story with amazing twists. Disturbing in an oddly satisfying way. I honestly don't know what to say about this movie.

Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Carrie Coon, Kim Dickens, Tyler Perry, Neil Patrick Harris

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Short review: The Boxtrolls

Grade: A

A young boy must defend the boxtrolls who raised him.

Gorgeous stop-motion animation and design. Great and touching story. Very funny and entertaining.

Voices of Ben Kingsley, Jared Harris, Nick Frost, Richard Ayoade and many more.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Short review: Tusk

Grade: A+

A man goes to Canada to interview a strange man when things go awry.

Very funny. Amazingly bizarre and out there. Unnerving at times. Great writing. If nothing else, truly original.

Justin Long, Michael Parks, Haley Joel Osment, Genesis Rodriguez, Guy LaPointe

Monday, August 25, 2014

Short review: Sin City: A Dame to Kill For

Grade: B

More stories from Basin City.

Its great and a lot of fun... So long as you haven't seen the first Sin City, then its confusing as you watch several characters who died already die again.

Mickey Rourke, Josh Brolin, Eva Green, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Powers Booth, Jessica Alba, Bruce Willis and many more.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Short review: Get On Up

Grade: A-

The story of the hardest working man in show business.

Great movie and story. Great acting. Music is fantastic. Some weird structural issues.

Chadwick Boseman, Nelsan Ellis, Dan Aykroyd, Viola Davis and more.

Short review: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Grade: B

Very fun and enjoyable movie. Some issues with lazy writing.

Megan Fox, William Fichtner, Will Arnett and more.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Short review: Guardians of the Galaxy

Grade: A++

Five outlaws ban together to save the galaxy.

Amazing! Great story. Great writing. Great characters. Very funny. Touching at times. The best movie of the year.

Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel and more.

Short review: Lucy

Grade: B+

A woman's mind is unleashed through an accident with drugs in her stomach.

Very fun action/sci-fi movie. Ignore the science. The ending fumbles a little.

Scarlett Johansson, Morgan Freeman and more.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Short review: Hercules

Grade: A-

Hercules helps the king of Thrace fight an evil mystical warlord. Or so he thinks.

Its not the movie I wanted to see but I like what they did. Very fun and entertaining. He throws a horse.

Dwayne Johnson, Rufus Sewell, John Hurt, Ian McShane and many more.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Short review: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Grade: A+

When the apes discover that humans are still alive, their peace is threatened.

Absolutely amazing. Great story. Riveting and intense. Maybe the best one yet.

Andy Serkis, Jason Clarke, Keri Russell, Gary Oldman and more.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Short review: Begin Again

Grade: A

A songwriter and a drunk former record exec make a new kind of album together.

Amazing story and concept. Very original and fun. Ultra charming.

Mark Ruffalo, Keira Knightly, Katherine Keener, Hailee Steinfeld, Adam Levine, Mos Def, Cee Lo Green and more

Monday, June 30, 2014

Short Review: Transformers: Age of Extinction

Grade: A-

After Chicago, the government is hunting down the transformers.

A more serious tone than the previous movies. Lots of fun. DINOBOTS.

Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci, Kelsey Grammer and more.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Short review: 22 Jump Street

Grade: A

Schmidt and Jenko are back doing the same thing as before. This time in college.

Absolutely hilarious. One of the funniest movies I have seen in a long time. Tons of fun. Great cameos. All around great.

Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, Ice Cube and more.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Short review: Edge of Tomorrow

Grade: A

A man gets the ability to reboot when he dies while fighting an alien invasion.

Amazing. Great story. Lots of fun. Good humor mixed in. Its Groundhog Day with aliens.

Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt, Bill Paxton, Brendan Gleason and more.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Short review: Maleficent

Grade: A-

A new look at the classic character and tale of Sleeping Beauty

Very good and entertaining. Surprisingly funny. Just a fun watch.

Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, Sharlto Copley

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Short review: A Million Ways to Die in the West

Grade: B+

A man falls in love and fights for his life in the old west.

Very funny and entertaining. I only counted 22 ways to die. Could be a little shorter.

Seth MacFarland, Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Giovanni Ribisi, Sarah Silverman, Neil Patrick Harris

Monday, May 26, 2014

X-Men: Days of Future Past

Grade: A+

Wolverine must go back in time in order to try to stop a war against mutants from starting.

Amazing. Great story telling. Great action. Fascinating story. Possibly the best X-Men movie yet.

Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy, Patrick Stewart, Michael Fassbender, Ian McKellan, Jennifer Lawrence, Ellen Page and more.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Short review: Godzilla

Grade: B

After his father dies in Japan, a man tries to get back to his family in San Fransisco.

Good story. Lots of fun. Last 20 minutes are amazing. Hopefully the titular character will be in the next one.

Aaron Taylor Johnson, Elizabeth Olson, Ken Watanabe and more.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Short Review: The Amazing Spiderman 2

Grade: A

Spiderman is back, this time taking on Electro and more.

Great movie. They did a beautiful job with an iconic moment. Touch too long though.

Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Jamie Fox, Dane Dehaan, and more.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Short Review: Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Grade: A+

Cap is back. But while adjusting to 21st century life he begins to unravel a grand conspiracy.

Even better than the first and one of the best in the Marvel cinematic universe series. Plays more like a spy novel but with Marvel's famous grand action set pieces. Amazing characters all done and developed very well. Some extremely shocking moments.

Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Anthony Mackie, Robert Redford, Samuel L. Jackson and more.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Short Review: 3 Days to Kill

Grade: B+

A spy/assassin learns he is dying but must pull one last job while trying to connect with his teenage daughter.

Its Luc Bresson so its just fun. Pretty entertaining and funny. Good action scenes. A dash of weird.

Kevin Costner, Hailee Steinfeld, Amber Heard and more.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Short Review: RoboCop

Grade: B+

After an attempt on his life, Officer Alex Murphy is transformed into RoboCop.

Very entertaining. Great action scenes. They really did their own thing with this.

Starring Joel Kinnaman, Gary Oldman, Michael Keaton, Abbie Cornish, Jackie Earl Haley and more.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Short Review: The Lego Movie

Grade: A+

A plain Lego man learns he is meant to save the world.

Absolutely hilarious. Tons of fun. Great story.

Voices of Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks, Morgan Freeman, Liam Neeson and many many others.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Short Review: Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

Grade: B+

Jack Ryan takes a job at the CIA which turns from a desk job to operational spy.

Fun action thriller. Great use of tension and suspense. Fun spy/action movie. Entertaining villain.

Chris Pine, Kevin Costner, Kenneth Branaugh, Keira Knightly and more.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Short Review: Nebraska

Grade: A

A son drives his confused father from Montana to Nebraska to claim a fake million dollar prize.

Great movie. Charming. Funny at times. Well written. Great performances.

Bruce Dern, Will Forte, June Squibb and more.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Short Review: Her

Grade: A+

A man falls in love with his Operating System.

Brilliant. Beautiful. Funny. Great performances.

Joaquin Phoenix, Scarlett Johansson, Amy Adams and more.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

My Favorite Movies of 2013

30. The Wolverine

Lots of fun. Hugh Jackman is always great as Wolverine.

29. Monsters University

Basically Monsters Inc. mixed with Revenge of the Nerds. Love it.

28. The To Do List

Very funny with a great cast. I laughed the whole way through.

27. Now You See Me

Yeah. Magicians work together to rob banks and stuff. I thought it was very enjoyable.

26. Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters

Take the classic tale we all knew as kids and inject a ton of violence and humor and you’ve got this movie. Very fun. Plus the somewhat subtle joke of Hansel having diabetes as a result of eating all that candy as a kid.

25. World War Z

It was a fun and exciting take on zombies where they are more of an intense swarm than a slow moving plague. I know it is nothing like the book at all really but I still thoroughly enjoyed it.

24. Machete Kills

All the fun and ridiculousness of the first Machete but turned up to 11. Really funny. Cannot wait for Machete Kills in Space.

23. Elysium

Great concept. Great  cast. Amazing visuals and effects. Great action. I loved it.

22. Kick-Ass 2

Again, I think it’s better than the first and I was not expecting that. Very funny and entertaining, the violence and action is crazy and the characters are great. Love it. Want more Hit Girl.

21. Anchorman 2

Really holds up to the original. Very funny throughout. Could’ve been a little shorter. Loved the commentary on 24 hour news and the fall of the news and media in America.

20. This is the End

This movie is out of control with the humor and comedy and the places it is willing to go. Very funny and original and everybody playing themselves was absolutely great.

19. Man of Steel

The first watchable Superman movie, yeah, I said it. Krypton was amazing. Great cast. Love that Lois Lane knows who he is, makes way more sense. The actions scenes were great. Yes, there was a lot of destruction but that’s what happens when two gods fight. Things happen in this one.

18. Thor: The Dark World

Absolutely great. Loki steals his scenes. Very fun, funny and entertaining. Love the character of Thor and can’t wait to see more.

17. About Time

Very sweet, charming and absolutely hilarious movie. I was very surprised by this one. Bill Nighy steals the movie but I loved the whole thing from start to finish.

16. Philomena

Very interesting story and great writing. Steve Coogan is great in it but Judi Dench owns this movie, she is superb.

15. Saving Mr. Banks

Ultra charming and entertaining move. I realize that it is Disney’s version of the story and the ending is basically bs but as a movie I still love it. Hanks is perfect as Walt Disney and Emma Thompson is great as PL Travers. Paul Giamatti completely steals all of his scenes (and the movie in my opinion) as Travers’ driver.  

14. Frozen/Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2

Couldn’t decide which I liked more. Frozen is very charming and fun but really I absolutely love the ending and the message it sends. Bravo Disney. Cloudy 2 is insanely fun and very funny. Loved it too.

13. Catching Fire

After completely fumbling the first movie they finally completely nail it with this one. This is the Katniss I’ve been waiting for. This is the emotion and character connections I’d been looking for as well. The games are great and everything about it was exactly what I was hoping for.

12. GI Joe: Retaliation

Another sequel that is way better than the first. This movie is everything I wanted out of a GI Joe movie. You’ve got COBRA taking over the white house, fun characters, Cobra Commander with a weird voice and shiny helmet, Bruce Willis as the original Joe and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson taking over the lead. Just a very fun action movie.

11. The Dallas Buyers Club

This movie is great on many levels. The initial story about a good ol’ boy who contracts aids is fascinating. Watching this homophobe become best friends with a pre-op transgender is heartwarming. And his battle with the medicare system and the FDA is something that has me completely fascinated. Not to mention Matthew McConoughey is amazing as the start of this movie, I am loving this turn that he has taken lately and can’t wait to see more. Also, Jared Leto is transcendent in his role, crazy good.

10. Warm Bodies

If you haven’t seen this one yet, do yourself a favor and check it out. It is very funny as well as charming and it tells a great story at the same time. Hilarious bit of commentary on how the zombie outbreak started. I just love that someone made a (literally) hearwarming movie about zombies and hope. Great movie.

9. Star Trek Into Darkness

Tons of fun. We all knew it was Kahn so don’t be so upset. The action was great. I loved everybody’s performance as these iconic characters. Just a blast to sit back and watch.

8. The Wolf of Wall Street

After Hangover 3 came out and officially ruined all of those movies for me I was glad to see this come out. It is absolutely hilarious, which really took me by surprise. It makes the Hangover look like a Disney movie. This is by far my favorite performance by Leonardo DiCarpio and who knew that he was a physical comedian. Jonah Hill is crazy good in this as well. I wanted more McConoughey (never thought I’d say that) and an amazing cast of people popping up all over this movie. So good, so funny in showing just what greed can do.

7. Pacific Rim

The 12 year old me was squeeing with joy while watching this. Giant robots punch giant monsters in the face! What more could you possibly ask for? The fight scene in Hong Kong where Gypsy Danger uses a giant ocean liner as a baseball bat, freaking awesome!

6. The World’s End

Simon Pegg, Edgar Wright and Nick Frost knock another out of the park with the conclusion to their “Cornetto” Trilogy. A hilarious story, great settings, great characters and fun action scenes. Absolutely loved it. There is a lot of subtly to this movie as well, like the bar names being a foresight into what will happen at that pub. Hilarious conclusion as well. These guys make great movies together and this one fits nicely with Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz.

5. Iron Man 3

Shane Black takes over this for the third installment in this amazing franchise. He manages to inject a lot of great humor into it. It is more a character piece about Tony Stark than anything and I loved it for that. The big twist in the movie I loved as well, in terms of the movie at least. Overall just a blast to watch and a great movie. Robert Downey Jr rocks it again of course and Gwenyth Paltrow is awesome in it as well. Not to mention the rest of the cast.

4. Gravity

Wow. This movie was spectacular and I am still trying to figure out how they made this movie without actually going to space. It really puts you right there with the characters, spinning aimlessly through space. An insane thrill ride that I still can’t get over. I hate 3D but I cannot recommend seeing this movie on as big a screen as possible and in 3D as well. Sandra Bullock’s best role to date in my opinion and George Clooney is great as ever.

3. The Way, Way Back

I loved this movie from start to finish. First, who knew Steve Carrell could be such a great d-bag. The kid in the movie is absolutely great. Sam Rockwell is absolutely amazing and hilarious. The rest of the cast is spectacular. This movie is very funny and charming and just great from start to finish.

2. In A World…

I don’t know exactly what it is but I am completely in love with this movie. Written by, directed by and starring the very talented and funny Lake Bell. While watching this movie I had a big smile on my face from the very beginning and it never left my face. Again, very charming and funny and well written and I love the story and concept and execution and the cast in great. I simply love everything about this movie and cannot recommend it enough.

1. The Fast and the Furious 6

I don’t care what you say, this is the most fun I had at the movies all year. It is the most insane and crazy over-the-top  out-of-this-world  action movie I have ever seen. It completely ignores physics and logic and I love it for that. I stood up and cheered twice while watching this in the theater. Everybody in the movie should be dead after every action scene but they all just walk away brushing the dust from their sleeves and call it good. So very much fun, the cast is awesome and I cannot wait for 7 with the teaser they have at the end credits. 

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Short Review: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

Grade: A

A daydreaming man goes on an adventure to find a lost negative.

Great movie. Great story. Lots of fun and pretty inspirational.

Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig and many more.

Short Review: 47 Ronin

Grade: C

A "halfbreed" helps betrayed samurai seek revenge and justice for their murdered master.

Interesting story. Fun visuals and fights.

Keanu Reeves, many more.