Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Supernova (2000)

A film with a lot of promise. James Spader stared as a bad ass recovering drug addict. I like Spader who is best known now for the Blacklist TV show. Angela Basset is the heroine, and Peter Facinelli makes a terrific villian. After watching this movie I have to wonder why Peter or fellow costar Robin Tunney's carreers failed to soar. Even Lou Diamond Philps who I normaly have little time for did not annoy.

Its a classic Sci Fiction story with a great twist on faster than light travel. The legendary Walter Hill directed the first version but left the film, Francis Ford Coppala was brought in to make the best of the dailies. Rotten Tomatos gave it 10% and it make back less than 10 of its 90 million dollar budget. This was a very good movie that totally drew me into its world. Can't figure out why it was such a bomb.

Three Stars

The Town (2010)

I watched the Blu Ray extended version. It runs 2 hours and thirty minutes. I liked the original version which was just over two hours.  Even with the extra half hour the movie really moves.

Ben Afleck as a director and a star has become very bankable and his name in the credits almost guarantees satisfaction. The Town is a great gritty heist movie. It has many similarities to Heat, but if I had to pick the better movie it would be The Town. My only quibble was the sachrine ending. 
It was a box office and critical hit. Both as a star and director Its Aflecks best movie to date.

Four Stars

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Movie Fans Taken 3 (2014)

Taken 3 has accomplished its primary goal of sucking the last dollar out of Liam Neeson fans. We should feel good because he got $20 million of the $45 million dollar budget. We should feel bad because its a ridiculous movie. Saying that about a movie in the Taken tradition means its way out there in disbelief la la land. Mills never tells the bad guys about his skill set, he does not even kill that many people. This movie relied on explosions and car chases over use of special skills. 

There is a baby in this movie, the plot should have been the baby has been eaten by dingos. Rotten Tomatos gave it 10%.  If you liked Taken 2 which I did, this movie is about as big a drop off as it was from Taken One.

Two point one stars

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

American Sniper (2014)

This movie directed by the legendary Clint Eastwood  starring Bradly Cooper should have hit a bulls eye. It missed the target. Eastwood's direction lacks energy and Cooper is a cardboard action hero. Its not Eastwood's fault that the mess that was Iraq and the new chaos of ISIS are a strong counterpoint to the unquestioning patriotism profiled in the movie. Portraying the Iraqi people as savages was also over the top.

If it had not been a true story I might have flunked it. The Hurt Locker, Lone Survivor and Zero Dark Thirty all cover the same ground with more authenticity and emotional connection.

Rotten Tomatoes saw a completely differant film and gave it 75%. Out of respect more than merit I will give it 60%. It may be this movie resonates better with Americans than Canadians.
Three Stars

Clint Eastwood is firing back at critics like me. He makes a valid point. This movie is the Snipers story. It was written that way and thats how he filmed it. No grey zones in the American fighting mans mind.

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Monday, 15 December 2014

Gone Girl (2014)

One of the most clever plots in years. It was Directed by David Fincher who has some great films like Fight Club in his resume. I can see a best Director Oscar in his near future. At two hours and 25 minutes the movie does drag a bit in the second half. It was a really well acted movie with lots of Oscar nominations I'm sure.  Gone Girl was a critical and box office smash. I was disappointed at the ending but admit it was the correct one. Overall a very worthy production, and a terrific satire.

Four Stars

The Equalizer (2014)

Antoine Fuqua is an American film director. He directed the film Training Day as well as The Replacement Killers, Tears of the Sun, King Arthur, Shooter, Brooklyn's Finest, Olympus Has Fallen and The Equalizer. The Equalizer is probably the worst movie on that list. 

I love Denzel Washington. So this movie staring Denzl Washington with his old Training Day director had me pumped. Most of the air had left my balloon after the first ten minutes of nothing interesting going on. The movie takes way to long to take off.  Denzel Washington's character would be more at home as a member of the Avengers. The Russian Mobster chief villian looked way to much like Mr Bean. It was hokey and unoriginal.  It still managed $100 million domestic.  Rotten Tomatoes was less generous with a 61%. I would not go that high. There will likely be a sequel and hope it turns out better.

Two point six stars.

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Fury (2014)

Fury is one of those slice of life during wartime postcards from hell. A collection of cliches driven by a tank named Fury. Without knowing any better I would say the movie was based upon GI Combat comic characters and the Haunted Tank. Its a pretty good movie. Not on par with Saving Private Ryan, but all things being equal due to fantastic production values up there with movies like the Dirty Dozen. The Tank battle scenes are fantastic. David Ayer was the screenwriter on Training Day and other notable movies. As a director he is certainly more than capable. I wish he would avoid the cliche like a Canadian avoids saying Eh!  Maybe he could not stop Brad Pitt from mouthing some of the most ridiculous dialouge ever. Rotten Tomatoes loved it and the studio is trying to create some Oscar Buzz. I hate to be a buzzkill but this movie will never make a top ten war movies list. War is hell but making a WW2 movie that will crack the top ten needs some kind of Miracle.  I suggest a movie about Hitler escaping the Bunker. I read a great book like that but can not find it now.

I just remembered it was the Berkut. It would make a fantastic movie.

Three point three stars.