Hey, at least robots and aliens will remember your movie 1,000 years from now.
Best Worst Movie is a documentary that follows the lives of the stars of a notoriously bad movie from 1990 called Troll 2. Maybe you’ve heard of it, maybe you haven’t, but either way, it’s considered one of the worst movies, if not, the worst of all-time. Some high-acclaim, right? However, the movie isn’t just about that historical-train wreck, it’s about the people involved with it, most importantly, the film’s most recognizable actor George Hardy who is not an actor working in the industry at all, but is a dentist from Alabama who just auditioned for the movie on his day off and got the part.
Believe it or not, I still haven’t had the time in my life to check out the terrible masterpiece that is Troll 2. Of course I hear all of these bad and hilarious things about it and I’ve seen plenty of YouTube clips over the years, but I have never sat down and been able to go through this train-wreck. I think it’s because I like loading myself with movies that are either ones that I know are good, ones that are okay, ones that are middling, or ones that are worth my time. I don’t always win, but at least I know what I’m getting myself into. I think knowing that I’m possibly going to view and watch the worst movie of all-time, in a sober state-of-mind nonetheless, is sort of where my mind takes me other way. But heck, if this documentary does make me want to do something, it’s call-up all my friends, get a couple cases, sit-down, find this somewhere on the inter-web, and have an absolute ball.
What’s so surprising about this documentary is that was all put together by Michael Stephenson, a dude who played the kid in the original Troll 2, and you have to give him a lot of credit for it as well. Not only does it give you a sense that this kid knows the story he wants to tell, but will also treat it with love and respect that so many people have been giving it over the years. Yes, people do have love and care for shitty movies, whether you’d like to soak that in or not. Stephenson practically tracks down every single person that was part of this production and basically what makes this flick because each and every one of them are as colorful and fun as the last one.
First off, there’s the Italian director Claudio Fragasso, who can’t seem to just admit that this film blows and instead, continues to call it a “misunderstood masterpiece”; secondly, we got former-mental patient, Don Packard, who had a small role in the film and is a guy who seems like he’s on a total other planet, but also comes back down to Earth when he realizes just how special he is to everybody who has seen this movie; and lastly, there is also the leading lady, Margo Prey, who wants barely anything to do with this movie such as screenings, interviews, reunions, etc. and just can’t seem to get her head around the fact that her acting career may just be over with. It all sounds so sad, which in the director’s case: it is. However, it isn’t all played for laughs or sobs, as every single interview/person is treated with the a certain-sense of gratitude that rather than poking fun at these people for ever taking part in something so horrendous. Instead of showing them as complete and utter jokes, it shows them as human beings just wanting a shot at the big-times, had a chance, went for it, and just so happened to be in the worst movie of all-time. Doesn’t happen to everybody, but just could if you aren’t careful.
This is exactly the case for the leading man of Troll 2: the man, the myth, the happiest guy on the face of Planet Earth, George Hardy.
Every single person that was apart of that movie, are as compelling as the last, but none are as memorable as George Hardy for the sake of reason that Hardy is so damn lovable right from the start and almost never ends. Hardy first got apart of Troll 2 when he found out there was a spot for acting and right when the film was over, he went back to his dentist profession where he continued there, even till today. Hardy is such a likable guy because he’s always smiling, saying “hello” or “good morning” to every single person he sees, makes light out any situation like filling in cavities for little kids, and never had any real hopes for becoming the next George Clooney. However, once this movie starts to develop a larger cult following than he could have ever imagined, Hardy starts to get that feeling in the pit of stomach where he wants to live up his 15 minutes of fame no matter what. It was really cool to see how such a regular, everyday guy like Hardy could get swept-up in something like this but still, it’s very believable and entertaining because Hardy seems to be in on the joke the whole time, and does whatever he can to keep himself out there and keep the memory of this flick still alive and well. However, I don’t think he realized that maybe he doesn’t even need to, the film will probably be around forever no matter what.
The film isn’t all about these eclectic cast of characters though, it’s actually more about how a film can be so bad, so terrible, and so god-awful, but also, so fun and still find an audience over 20 years later, where some people even start to consider it a “masterpiece”. I know it seems crazy to say this, but this movie actually had me believing that at one point by how damn passionate people are about this movie and to see Troll 2 constantly keep on showing up at little private screenings/festivals, really shows you just how loved this film is today. I’ve never seen Troll 2, but this film made me actually want to go out there and see just what the hell all of these people are getting stuck ranting and raving about, even until this day.
If there was any problem I had with this flick is was that by the end of it all, it started to lose my interest mainly for the fact that it starts to get a tad bit darker and focus on the sad elements of being apart of a movie like Troll 2. The whole movie before all of this was funny, fast-paced, and very light with its subject, but it all started to go away quickly. Also, I think it could have talked a bit more about getting into movies and how to avoid hurdles like Troll 2 in a career, but it still did it’s best with what it gave us. It didn’t want to become a sob-story about not want to do in Hollywood when you got all of that promise in front of you, so good for them.
Consensus: With a funny, light approach and filled with plenty of larger-than-life personalities, Best Worst Movie is a tribute to what has been considered one of the worst movies of all-time, and shows you just why it’s considered this, but also never loses the essence of why so many people just love it for exactly that.
8.5 / 10 = Matinee!!
God, I wish I was as cool as these guys. I seriously do.
Dapper Danny Ocean (George Clooney) is a man of action. Less than 24 hours into his parole from a New Jersey penitentiary, the wry, charismatic thief is already rolling out his next plan. Following three rules – don’t hurt anybody, don’t steal from anyone who doesn’t deserve it and play the game like you’ve got nothing to lose – Danny orchestrates the most sophisticated, elaborate casino heist in history. This is where the fun begins in Ocean’s eyes, and you know what? His eyes do not deceive him a single-bit.
Heist flicks are and have always been a favorite of mine, and to feature a cast with the likes of Clooney, Damon, Cheadle, Pitt, Mac, Reiner, and even Affleck (Casey, that is), you know I was even more excited because it seemed like the perfect-opportunity for a bunch of guys to just pal-around, have a good time, and pull-off some neat-o heists. However, just to make sure that this isn’t one, long bro-sesh from start-to-finish, we got Steven Soderbergh at the helm to keep everything under control and honestly, what better man to do that then the guy who has made one of the greatest heist/crime flicks of all-time, Out of Sight? Well, you could probably argue Tarantino or Scorsese, or plenty of others, but if you were to really get down to the nitty-gritty of it, I think you would be pretty damn fine with having Soderbergh behind it all, because I definitely was.
Having a guy like Steven Soderbergh doing your film means one thing and one thing only: it’s going to have a crap-load of style. And that’s not really a bad thing at all, because with a generic and relatively conventional story like this, you need that to add more pizzazz and spice to the whole-product, even though it’s obviously apparent that’s what Soderbergh is relying on the most. However, it didn’t get in the way of material and you can’t help but just love the fact that Soderbergh gives the flick a more-polished look than you are used to seeing with heists, but also realize that it makes the setting it takes place-in, all the more beautiful and smoother in it’s own, coolio way. Soderbergh is the man of being cool, looking cool, and filming cool, and he was definitely the perfect-choice for material like this.
There’s also a great-deal of fun and entertainment that Soderbergh brings to this flick and it’s not just all about the style, either, it’s more about the actual heist itself, and keeping you constantly wondering, guessing, and figuring-out how it’s all going to play-out in your mind and on-screen. Soderbergh definitely does a little-job of trickery here and there with this heist and the twists and turns it takes, but that just adds more to the overall enjoyment of what we all see and it’s perfect since everything until then, was all just one, big lead-up to what was going to go down. We see bits and pieces of how this heist is going to go down, but not enough, so that when the heist does go through and we see everything that goes-down, we’re not only surprised, but pretty gripped to our seat, as you don’t really know how it’s going to turn-out for this cats in the end. Sooderbergh has as much fun with this as his cast does, but by doing-so, he allows us to just revel in his enjoyment in making the material and it’s no surprise that the guy came-back for 2 more of these flicks. However, more on them later as the reviews keep on coming, so just you wait DTMMR readers/follows out there!
Topping-off this cake of coolness, with a sweet, little cherry on-top is the cast that is filled to the brim with the coolest mofo’s on the planet, and some, you have yet to even know are cool just yet. George Clooney is the brains behind the whole operation as Danny Ocean and is cool, lean, and suave, exactly as we know and love him to be. Clooney sort of takes the background in this flick and allows the rest of his cast to show-off and do their thing, but whenever he gets a chance to show why he’s so cool, he does it with perfection. Damn that George Clooney. Playing the “other” brains behind the operation is Brad Pitt as Rusty Ryan, a dude that knows it all, can walk the walk, and talk the talk. Pitt’s good at playing cool and smart, we all know him for that, and we all love him for that. ‘Nuff said about that. Matt Damon is the new-blood of the gang and does a great-job at playing up that cocky-rookie look to him, while also being able to put-up, when shut-up time is right there, in front of his face. Not the most memorable performance from Damon but the guy sure as hell can act and make any role, seem like the perfect-fit for him.
Playing the opposite-side of these fast-cats is Andy Garcia, aka, the guy who owns the casino that they are robbing, Terry Benedict. Garcia is a tough-guy that you really feel like can’t be out-smarted, no matter who the person/people doing the out-smarting are. Garcia’s got a lot of intimidating-looks in those eyes and you never quite know if he’s going to pull-off the win in the end, or just give it to Ocean’s dudes. Once again, it’s a tense-ride to the finish that you never quite know where it’s going to end-up or how, for that matter. Julia Roberts is fine as Benedict’s gal/Ocean’s ex-gal, but does her usual, “I’m-Julia-Roberts-And-My-Shit-Don’t-Stink” act that some love her for, some hate her for, and some are just tired and bored of her for playing so much. Me, I linger somewhere around the latter and as juicy and spicy as the scenes with Clooney may be, her character is still Julia Roberts, playing Julia Roberts.
Everybody else in this cast is pretty damn fine as you’ll see a crap-load of familiar faces pop-up, do their thing, and be done with it and continue onto the road. Seriously, everybody is good except for Don Cheadle as Basher, who is supposed to be channeling this wry, British-accent that goes in-and-out like a you know what, and is even more distracting to this character, because every time he’s talking, it just sounds like Don Cheadle trying hard to sound British. And yes, Cheadle does have a very distinctive voice that is easy to point-out as to when it’s real, when it’s being fake, and when it’s trying to be British. Oh well, I guess this cat needed to have one bad performance to throw in there for his whole filmography. Bastard.
As fun and exciting as this flick may be, you really do just end the film, happy as a fly, and continue on with your day as if nothing happened. In a way, that’s not such a terrible thing to have in life, considering it’s a happy-thought, but in other ways, it’s a bit of a disappointment considering the cast and crew that was on-display here. Yes, it’s fun, exciting, and entertaining for the 2 hours it’s alive and well on the big-screen, but other than that, you don’t have much else to really hold you over or make you think of anything afterwards either. I don’t know, maybe I was just expecting a bit too much more than I was given, but I definitely feel like there should have been more for me to seize-onto at the end, no matter how conventional or obvious it was trying to be.
Consensus: Ocean’s Eleven is no game-changer in terms of heist movies, but is still entertaining, fun, exciting, well-acted, and just really, really cool, almost to the point of where you feel cool for watching it but you soon realize, that you’re just a poor college student who drives a 2005 Scion, and has about $20 in your wallet as you speak. Yeah, I’m speaking from my point-of-view, but if only I wasn’t. If only dreams really could come true, after all.
So does any of this explain as to why gas is up to 4 bucks?!?
This is the story that tells the oil industry from different perspectives such as a CIA operative (George Clooney), an energy analyst (Matt Damon), a Washington attorney (Jeffrey Wright), and a young unemployed Pakistani migrant worker (Mazhar Munir) in an Arab country in the Persian Gulf.
Damn, I wish I was smarter when it came to watching movies because this film pretty much killed me. However, coming from the dude who wrote Traffic, I wasn’t expecting anything less.
Writer/director Stephen Gaghan does the same thing he did with that film and give it the inter-connecting story-lines, with plenty of characters, and all centering around one central topic. This time around, it’s not as good but he still has his moments as writer and director, mostly the latter though. I liked the look Gaghan gave this film: gritty, dirty, and very realistic looking as I actually felt like I was there going from Pakistan to Texas, then to Maryland and back to Pakistan again. Gaghan also some nice moments of suspense and tension here with the script as you know something crazy is going to go down and you can feel the heat in the air rising. However, the problem with all of that is that I didn’t know exactly what or why that heat was rising in the first place.
My main problem with this flick was that I don’t think that this film really was for me. I like to watch a movie to be enjoyed, to see good performances, nice writing, and maybe learn a thing or two in the process, but the problem here is that I didn’t learn anything probably because I didn’t know anything about this topic to begin with. Gaghan knows what he’s talking about when it comes to all of this political mumbo-jumbo about the oil and foreign relations, but I honestly didn’t. Instead of trying to make it work for the audience in anyway, Gaghan doesn’t seem to really give a shit whether or not anybody understands what the hell everybody’s talking about because he’s got some knowledge to drop on us. Gaghan constantly keeps on bringing out information left and right and it was so frustrating after awhile because even though I tried to fill in the blanks myself as to who was doing what to who, I still couldn’t come up with anything and realized that I was missing out on some key plot elements to this film, not like I was going to even know what was going on in the first place anyway.
I guess the blame could be put down on me since I barely knew anything about this main topic, or anything else they talked about here but I honestly think that Gaghan could have at least dumbed it down just a bit. That’s right people, I said dumb it down and I will stand by that statement only for this flick. Hell, maybe dumb it down isn’t the right thing to say, maybe it just needed to be more coherent for an average folk such as myself. Yeah, coherency is what I really meant.
The key audience for this flick who will understand just about everything that’s going on are probably dilettantes, politicians, pundits, and all of the other people that are involved with the government, but for your regular movie goer, it’s hard to understand anything really and I think that Gaghan could have really benefited from some explanation or more time to keep this flick going and making a lot more sense to the wider audience. Maybe this film is too smart or maybe I’m just too dumb, either way, I can’t say that I was on the edge of my seat nor did I have any real clue as to what was going on.
Where the film really did start to pick up though was about the last 30-45 minutes when everything started making sense after awhile. All of the stories start to come together and even though I didn’t really know what the hell was going on in the first place, I could say that the ending was definitely a satisfying ending because I did pay enough close attention to it the whole time. I know it’s a cheat saying that I almost forgave the film for it’s last act, but I still think Gaghan handled it well. Wish I could say the same for the rest of his flick.
The ensemble Gaghan was also able to get here worked very well even though it really comes down to three people: George Clooney, Matt Damon, and the criminally underrated Jeffrey Wright, who are all great and perfect choices to be the anchors for this flick. They are all very good with their roles as is everybody else in this big-ass ensemble too but really, it’s Clooney who shines the most. Clooney got his Oscar with this performance as Robert Barnes, and as good and strong as it may be, I don’t quite think it was pure Oscar material but this guy is going to get a big win in the future so it’s all fine and dandy for now.
Consensus: Gaghan’s direction is well-done, and his work with this big ensemble is also very impressive, but the problem with his script is that it’s way too confusing with all of it’s jargon that will only make sense to people who actually pay attention to this stuff in the first place. I don’t know if it was just me or the flick itself, but something wasn’t going too well here and that’s why I can’t say it’s as great as everybody says it is.
It’s like the ‘Bourne’ trilogy, but with a lot more talking and yelling.
Michael Clayton (George Clooney) is an in-house “fixer” at one of the largest corporate law firms in New York. At U/North, the career of litigator Karen Crowder (Tilda Swinton) rests on the multi-million dollar settlement of a class action suit that Clayton’s firm is leading to a seemingly successful conclusion. But when Kenner Bach’s brilliant and guilt-ridden attorney Arthur Edens (Tom Wilkinson) sabotages the U/North case, Clayton faces the biggest challenge of his career and his life.
Writer/director Tony Gilroy is a dude mostly known for writing all of the ‘Bourne’ flicks and instead of going with the fast action, chases, and cool stunts, he actually aims for talking to take place. Which surprisingly works wonders.
The one thing that Gilroy does perfectly with this flick is give us a good premise that keeps on getting better and better as the all of the details start to show up, as well as more and more layers begin to peel. There’s a lot of info and details being thrown at us but it’s not too much to the point of where we don’t know what’s happening. Gilroy actually allows us to take in all of what we know about this story/case/mystery and he continues to reward us as each and every plot twist comes out. The script is very good and even as much as talking as there is in this flick, it’s not boring by any means so for anyone going in expecting a Jason Bourne-like flick, won’t be terribly disappointed. Gilroy knows how to create tension just by having people revealing things and the tension just keeps on going and going and going, until eventually the credits pop-up and he releases you.
The film also does another great job with its script by being very subtle about everything. Right at the beginning of the flick we are just sort of popped right into the middle of this story and we don’t really know why or how these different stories and characters connect in anyway, but through the conversations we start to understand but it’s not as obvious. There’s also never a moment in this flick that seemed too melodramatic or corny for my sake because Gilroy makes it all feel real with these people explaining themselves through not only words, but actions as well. Yes, I know these people aren’t real but the film still made it seem so with everything that they do here.
My problem with this flick is that even the realism can be a down-side of the film as well, especially when it starts to dive into darker territory. One of the things I couldn’t believe in this flick was that it seems a little hard for a company to actually be able to tap somebody’s phone without anyone ever knowing, but it’s almost even harder to believe the fact that they could get away with murder successfully for such a long period of time. I will not say or state what actually happens in this flick that made me think this but it was a little too hard to believe at first and it’s kind of a shame that the flick revolves around it a lot.
Like most thrillers though, the flick also pays more attention to its plot and what its characters are doing, rather than what they feel and this was also what set me back a bit. I wasn’t looking for any real emotional connection with these characters to the point of where I could call them an inspiration but the film, except for the titled hero, never really allows us in the minds of the other characters. Since there is a lot of subtlety, we rarely get a full understanding of what these characters are feeling and even though it didn’t take me out of the film completley, it still set me back once I realized that there was a bit of emptiness to its emotional impact.
I think one of the main reasons to see this flick is mainly for the performances from everybody involved, especially George Clooney as Michael Clayton. Clayton is an ambiguous hero-like character that seems like one of those messed up and strained dudes that just want a break from all of the havoc that they have had in their lives, which is what actually allows us to watch him and cheer him on for the whole 2 hours of this flick. Clooney is great with this role here because he combines some great elements of self-loathing as well as being exhausted with determination and that look and attitude that he’s always one step ahead of the person he’s against. It’s nothing terribly new for Clooney, as usual, but it’s always great to see him in top-form no matter what it may be and he definitely makes it a whole lot easier to actually feel something for this guy Michael Clayton.
Clayton’s opponent is named Karen Crowder, who is played very well by Tilda Swinton as well. I’ve already stated that I haven’t been the biggest fan of her but she’s pretty good here in a villain role that isn’t the type of villainous role you would expect. She’s self-conscious, scared, and one of those hard-workers that do terribly bad things in order to cover their own asses. Swinton isn’t exactly the ideal villain for a flick like this where you would expect her going around shooting people left-and-right, but she’s very good at playing a role that asks a lot more strength and emotion from her and it worked not just for me, but also for the Academy as well because she ended up winning the film’s only Oscar.
Tom Wilkinson is also another great performance in this flick as he is basically hooting, hollering, and running all-over-the-place throughout the whole flick but he’s still very good and adds a lot more to the character he’s playing as well as the story. We rarely get to see Wilkinson in such a role that allows him to just be a loose cannon and it was pretty cool to see him actually pull that off and seem very believable rather than just seeming like he’s over-acting. Sydney Pollack is also great in this role as Clayton’s senior partner, Marty Bach, and he’s always good in everything he does so no change there either.
Consensus: Although it hits some problems with its emotional impact, Michael Clayton still features amazing performances from the whole cast, an tense direction from Tony Gilroy, and a story that gets better and better as it goes along and more mysteries are revealed.
Meet Jack Foley (George Clooney), the most successful bank robber in the country. On the day he busts out of jail, he finds himself stealing something far more precious than money, Karen Sisco (‘s heart. She’s smart, she’s sexy, and unfortunately for Jack, she’s a Federal Marshal. Now, they’re willing to risk it all to find out if there’s more between them than just the law.
I guess back in 1998 the names Clooney and Soderbergh didn’t draw that much attention considering this was a pretty big box-office flop. If it was released in today’s world, the film would have been doing some major work but I guess everybody just has to get their start somewhere.
The film is adapted from a Elmore Leonard book that I have not read but from what I hear, is just exactly like the same tone and pace that this film gives it. What I liked about this writing is just how funny it was without being too obvious and that there was still a lot of suspense, mystery, and crime to be happening. I mean everybody in this flick is a little bit goofy, just like the situations they get themselves caught up into but for some reason the film didn’t seem uneven with its wacky humor and awesome heist and action sequences. Let me also remind you that this is a story that actually has some believability to it where I could actually see certain things like this happening if these certain people were to actually be put into these situations. Then again, I’m not saying that your average con-men/bank robbers look like George Clooney or do many Federal Marshal’s look like Jennifer Lopez, I’m just saying that a lot of what happened here doesn’t seem too insane for a flick.
The film is also perfectly directed by Steven Soderbergh, who took one big-step out of the indie world that he caught himself in and did a great job with just about everything here and finding a way to give it his own cool style. His style makes the film feel like a 70′s crime flick with the sort of funky music playing in the background and the grainy-looking camera he uses that looks as if it was used for filming some old school porno’s back in the day. It’s a really cool style but it’s also the fact that this film just breathes cool where everything you see works.
There are plenty of heist and action moments that this film works perfectly with but it’s the romance that I keep on remembering the most about. The romance is perfectly handled here, which was a total surprise to me in the first place, but the fact that Clooney and Lopez get into a discussion about how in ‘Three Days of Condor’, the romance felt forced and too quick and then they have the same exact romance. What I liked about this element is that the scenes are laced in here perfectly to the point of where it doesn’t feel like the film is just shoe-horning it all in there. It’s also pretty sexy if you think about it and it’s one of those romances between two different characters that seems to work even when the film constantly shifts in between them both fighting one another on opposite ends.
My only problem with this flick that actually didn’t take away too much but it still had me bothered was the fact at just how much this flick reminded me of ‘Jackie Brown’ and I think it’s just one of those cases that since both films were adapted from the same author, that they both kind of give off the same style. Tarantino’s flick was witty, suspenseful, filled with a cool style, and had his usual signatures that he features in just about all of his films but here, it’s kind of the same with a little bit of different touches. Hell, both films even have Michael Keaton playing the same role in both so it’s pretty obvious that I would get some déjà vu.
The main reason why this film works though is because of its awesome all-star cast that shines with every single star. George Clooney broke out with this role as Jack Foley, and would continue playing that same role for the next 13 years but to be honest he’s great here. He’s sly, funny, sexy (for the ladies, not for me..then again maybe for me), and everything he does here he seems to be having a blast playing this bad guy that we can’t help but to love considering he seems like he’s one step ahead of everybody else. Jennifer Lopez is also equally as good as Karen Sisco. She is basically the same person as Jack Foley, instead she is all for the law rather than against it. They both work great together and the romance between them I was talking about earlier I don’t know would have worked with anybody else in these roles. Every scene they have is more memorable than the one that came before it and it’s kind of a bummer that Lopez hasn’t really done much else that’s worth noting since this flick.
Don Cheadle is also good as a dick playing Foley’s main opponent in the heist-game, Snoopy; Ving Rhames is the man and surprisingly very funny as Buddy; Dennis Farina is J. Lo’s dad and it’s surprise to see him playing someone else other than a gangster; Albert Brooks is barely in it but still good; and there is even some nice little side-spots from Steve Zahn, Catherine Keener, and a very young Viola Davis as well. Everybody here is great and they all seem to be having a ball with their performances which added more to my enjoyment of this flick as well.
Consensus: Out of Sight may remind me of Jackie Brown, but Soderbergh’s stylish direction and everybody’s performances here make this one of the most exciting, fun, and enjoyable crime comedies I have seen in a long time and it still makes me wonder just why this didn’t get much money in the first place.
Small weenies are so funny….
After discovering that his mild-mannered parents were huge porn stars in the 1970s, a young man (Nick Swardson) bids farewell to his small Iowa hometown and seeks his destiny in Los Angeles, where he aims to become the world’s most popular adult-film actor. The only problem is that he is not that well-equipped if you know what I mean.
Knowing that it scored a 0% on Rotten Tomatoes and was considered one of the biggest box-office flops of 2011, you are all probably wondering why I even wasted my time reviewing this. Well my friends, let’s just say I didn’t want to say that ‘Apollo 18′ was the worst flick of the year.
Directed by Tom Brady (no not that one, but it could have possibly been done by him) this is a flick that takes essentially a one-joke premise and stretches it out beyond belief, until there is absolutely nothing funny in it at all. The whole film is basically just about this dude Bucky Larson who has a small pee-pee and takes the porn industry by storm and gives hope to everyone all over the world. It’s a stupid idea in the first place but it just keeps on getting worse and worse until the point of where I had nothing to actually laugh at let alone even watch.
This is also all thanks to Adam Sandler, who actually co-wrote the script and since he has been doing a lot of PG/PG-13 comedies as of late, he’s finally allowed to once again branch out into R-rated territory, which makes this film even worse. The constant dick, sex, fart, boobs, vagina, and porn jokes just aren’t funny and instead of actually saying the word “dick”, they try all of these little cool slang words that I guess Sandler has been using for ages now but finally is able to let loose now that he isn’t catering to the whole family audience. Now of course I had about two chuckles that seemed completley forced but still chuckles none the less, but the whole formula of this fish-out-of-water comedy is just too lazy and the whole time this film just tries to resort to lame jokes that will only make you laugh if you’re the biggest perv in the world.
Now let me get to the real problem of this film and that is the title character himself, Bucky Larson played by Nick Swardson. I think that Swardson is a funny dude and I’m glad to see that he has finally gotten a chance to head-line a comedy for once but I just wish it was another flick and another character entirely since each quality is terribly annoying. Bucky is that kind-hearted, country bumpkin that was so sheltered from the outside world that he doesn’t know what to do around all of these naked chicks instead just automatically jizz everywhere that we usually get with these types of films, but it never works once here and I just wanted to punch Bucky in the face every time and knock those obviously fake buck-tooth out of his mouth. He’s annoying and he has this incredibly dumb Iowa accent where he over-exaggerates his r’s in everyday language. Poor Swardson, he deserves a lot better but the sad thing is that after being in a flick like this, it’s a little too hard to get anymore work that will even come close to having us forget about Bucky Larson.
Everybody in this film blows too, and are basically just a bunch of cartoon characters played by some familiar faces that we have seen every once and awhile. Christina Ricci is totally one-dimensional as Bucky’s lady-friend, Kathy McGee but she’s incredibly cute and hot so that was the one positive to her performance; Stephen Dorff plays the porn-industries own George Clooney as Dick Shadow, who looks like he came straight from an 80′s hair-metal music video and desperately wanted to go back after he realized what shit he just got put in; the incredibly washed-up Don Johnson doesn’t do anything here as the porno director, Miles Deep (Getttt ittt?!?!?!); and Kevin Nealon is probably the only one who had me chuckle and even that was a big-ass stretch considering this guy is so random and spends almost every single one of his scenes just screaming at the top of his lungs at something. You’ll of course see the usual Happy Madison crew pop-in every once and awhile but it’s a real shame that stars like Dorff and Ricci took shit like this considering they are very talented, and if this is the kind of material they’re going to be getting from now on then they should definitely fire whoever the hell is responsible for putting them in this crap.
Consensus: With a one-joke premise, unfunny jokes that seem to be raunchy just for the sake of being raunchy, and plenty of other annoying elements including the title character himself, Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star does nothing new with this obviously tired formula and is definitely one of the worst films of 2011.
Is a silent Clooney better than a talking Clooney?
On the heels of a rough assignment, assassin Jack (George Clooney) declares that his next job will be his last. Dispatched to a small Italian town to await further orders, Jack embarks on a double life that may be more relaxing than is good for him.
Seeing the trailers for this one, many were actually expecting a slam-bang action thriller, that never stopped moving from start-to-finish. However, just like this year’s film ‘Drive’, that wasn’t the case so much.
Director Anton Corbijn (who did a very good film called ‘Control’) has a great taste in art and what looks pretty. If you don’t believe me, just check out all of the pictures he’s taken and then tell me what you think. He approaches this film with a lot of peaceful and beautiful images of Italy that just match the whole slow-pace that this film was going for and it’s easy to see that he has a knack for making the smallest things, look pretty.
The film itself is actually very slow, but never too slow to the point of where I was bored which I enjoyed very much. The whole film, I felt like was building up a lot of suspense and actually focusing on a character, without really trying to be too pretentious and go for some large idea that doesn’t have right to be in a slow-burning thriller with Clooney in it.
It was also cool how this film had barely little or no talking, which just gives you a real big feeling of this is how life actually is. There are moments when not everything that’s going on makes perfect sense, but the film doesn’t try to hit you over the head and tell you what’s happening. Instead, they more or so focus on the interaction between characters without needing any words and shows that you don’t always need to explain everything with words. All you need is a good writer like Rowan Joffe to actually say something, without really even saying anything in the first place.
However, where the film starts to fall is the fact that it really doesn’t work out well as a coherent story. The film can be declared an “art film” which it certainly has every which right to be, but when it comes to actually be a thrilling story, it feels a bit disjointed with all of its scenes it sort of mashes together. We get many scenes of Clooney doing push-ups, shirtless of course, then he’s eating something in a little restaurant, then he works on a gun from the beginning till the end of the film, and then we also get scenes of him getting it on with this prostitute (Violante Placido) who always seems to be naked whenever she’s on screen. Most of these scenes go by very quickly to the point as to where it doesn’t feel like they’re even necessary to begin with, and it’s another problem that Corbijn tried too much with this film as well.
Corbijn makes it pretty clear that he wants us to root for this guy, Jack, by having just about every scene on him, showing him all that he does all day everyday, and giving us little bits and bits of insight into this dude’s life. However, I never really felt a connection to this character. It wasn’t that this guy was an unlikable dude, he just didn’t really seem to have me wanting for everything to be OK because of how dull his conversations with everybody were. To work as a character study, we actually need a character that we can connect with and believe in, but instead he just feels like a dude that’s there. Oh and he’s played by George Clooney.
As uninvolved as I was with this character Jack may actually be, George Clooney still does play him well. Since there’s not much of a very talky script, the film depends on a lot of emotions from Clooney to bring out a lot and it works because this guy just looks like a professional no matter what it is that he’s doing. It’s a more nuance performance from him and for the most part, he succeeds in actually keeping us interested by his character’s intentions because of Clooney himself. The scenes he has with Paolo Bonacelli, who plays the town priest, are some of the best in this film because you can tell that Clooney just wants to let out all that talking in the scenes but still stays back and keeps it all silent.
Consensus: The American features some beautiful sights, a slow but tense pace, and a different but good performance from George Clooney, but has too many scenes where they didn’t feel needed and a bit disjointed, which doesn’t do much for the whole character study aspect of this script.
Who would ever want to cheat on Clooney?
Matt King (George Clooney), the trustee of his family’s ancestral land in Hawaii, tries to reconnect with his two daughters after his wife suffers a serious boating accident and falls into a coma.Under pressure from different factions to sell the land, he belatedly learns a disturbing secret about his wife.
Director and writer Alexander Payne hasn’t been around since 2004 with ‘Sideways’ and it took him awhile to see what he was going to choose next. Thankfully it was this one.
This film reminded me of Payne’s earlier film, ‘About Schmidt‘ because it had some very funny times where I laughed that were also under-lined with real heart-wrenching moments as well. The humor here is a lot more dry and sarcastic, rather than being straight-up in-your-face about it, but either way worked because it had me laughing just about every time without ever feeling forced.
Where the film really works is where it gets emotional and shows real heart in how it handles each and every situation this film goes through. Moments and situations that you think are going to go one way, end up happening a completely different way then you imagined and the way Payne makes us feel something not only for these characters, but this story as well is where the film really worked.
Life is very unpredictable and it can sometimes be very messy, but for this Matt King guy, it seems like his life is really at a loss. However, the plot itself doesn’t feel like a major let-down and instead of hammering us over the head with constant mushy moments that would seem forced in many other films, it goes for the subtle realism that comes in anybody’s life and Payne always reminds us that it’s not just how we act about ourselves, but also with each other. It’s better to be there for one another, rather than not being there at all and I think that’s what this film really did a good job with trying to convey.
My main problem with this film is that I feel like the whole angle where Matt is stuck in this huge-ass sale of his ancestor’s land was just annoying, and kind of got in the way of the actual dilemma at hand. With this sub-plot, the film was trying to show us how Matt is in a more conflicting moment in his life and how he has all of this pressure on his back of basically getting rid of his whole family history, which to me seemed way to obvious and unneeded considering Matt is already finding himself with his family. I think without this sub-plot the film would have been a lot more easier to feel emotion for but instead it just adds on another idea that was not needed.
I also had a problem with the pacing because I really did feel as if it was a little bit too much of a languid pace for me. There were moments where this film really seemed like it was picking up some steam, and then there were times where it just dragged on to show us something about this character that I didn’t feel was needed and more of Payne just giving us moments of silence rather than characters actually talking.
George Clooney gives a great performance as Matt King, and it’s almost to a point where it’s too hard to tell a good Clooney performance from a bad Clooney performance. Here as King, he down-plays his natural charisma but he still has moments where he show that charm that makes him so damn likable in the first place, which makes the comedy work even more when he’s being a tad goofy. There are also many emotional scenes where Clooney is supposed to show his grief and pain through his facial expressions and I think it really works well and I think Clooney was a very good choice for this role.
As with ‘Up in the Air’, Clooney is given another young-actress to accompany him throughout the whole film and almost up-stage him here with Shailene Woodley in a great role as the rebellious daughter, Alexandra. She is mean, angry, and a little bothered by her dad but still has enough love and sympathy for him where she can ease up and realize that their whole family is going through a hard time. Nick Krause plays her boyfriend, Sid, who reminds me of a younger Keanu Reeves but in a good way; Beau Bridges is funny and really cool as cousin Hugh; Robert Forster plays the King’s father-in-law and boy did he get old, but he’s still good; and Judy Greer is awesome here as King’s wife’s boyfriend’s wife. I know that was a pretty long one but hey, I tried to make sense.
Speaking of King’s wife’s boyfriend, he is played a face that nobody has seen in quite a long time, a guy by the name of Matthew Lillard. Yes, Shaggy from Scooby-Doo is a person that some chick would rather bone than George Clooney. I think this casting was awesome because Lillard is actually very good and shows a lot of range as a dramatic actor and it’s just such a surprise to see how old this guy looks now as well. His character is also fleshed-out very well as is every other character in this film and I think that’s why this film really works in the end, because nobody is a caricature. They are all real people and all have real feelings, even if they may be a little bit messed up.
Consensus: The Descendants has problems with it’s languid pacing but is very sweet, emotional, and rich in character development where it shows how people deal with grief and the unpredictability of life. Not my favorite film of the year but a very good one that I’m glad to see that Alexander Payne wrote and directed.
I think everybody knows that they would vote for George Clooney to be the next president.
An up-and-coming campaign press secretary (Ryan Gosling) finds himself involved in a political scandal that threatens to upend his candidate’s (George Clooney) shot at the presidency.
Director George Clooney is behind the camera again for the fourth time and compared to ones such as Leatherheads, Good Night and Good Luck, and Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, he doesn’t have much of a problem doing whatever it is that he does.
Clooney shows that he really can keep an interesting story going even if it doesn’t seem like anything new or ground-breaking. From the beginning, I thought I was going to get another behind-the-scenes look at a political race like in Primary Colors, however, Clooney keeps it entertaining with sharp dialogue that actually made me laugh at times surprisingly, while still giving me a lot to see with all these bad-ass politicians.
However, the story goes through a very odd twist right through the middle where it sort of switches the tone from political thriller to melodrama of sorts. Without giving the twist away too much, I still felt like this was a pretty cool twist on the film and actually kind of tied in with what happens with the last 30 minutes of the film.
This is where I think Clooney started to fall though because he doesn’t really do a very good job of keeping both of these story-lines together and still almost meaning the same thing. What I mean is that the film’s twist is good and for the most part, features some very good scenes for the latter part of the film but there are still scenes about the other part of the film that had to do with the actual political race that didn’t seem like they belonged together with the twist in the same film. I noticed this and it kind of bothered me because even though I felt like both “story-lines” were interesting as hell and kept me interested, they still felt like two different kinds of films.
There isn’t also anything new that Clooney has to say about all of these politicians that hasn’t already been said or shown before. I think Clooney’s script is a little too moral for this material where it shows everybody basically being a bunch of evil and conniving sons-of-bitches towards one another. Clooney just wanted us to really see just how much all of these people manipulate each other when it comes to a presidential race such as this and although it was really cool to see all of that play out, I still didn’t need all the moralizing of these characters.
When it comes to the cast though, Clooney really does know how to do a great job with picking a near-perfect ensemble. Ryan Gosling is just all-over-the-place this year and is perfect as Stephen Myers. Gosling is a commanding presence on screen and demands your attention every time he’s up there. He seems believable and looks like a guy that knows all the right things to do and how to do them but after he is thrown a curve-ball, really doesn’t know how to handle it all too well.
Clooney is also good as Governor Mike Morris, and he surprisingly plays up that very dirty-politician act well which is something I wasn’t really expecting to see from him, especially in his own film. The scenes he has with Gosling are awesome and couldn’t have been any better with any other two actors. Paul Giamatti and Philip Seymour Hoffman play two opposing campaign managers and are cast perfectly because both roles get to show just how damn good they are. Both of them are amazing in this film showing how cool and calm one minute they can be, but then the next minute totally mad and crazy as hell, so you don’t know which one to trust the most and who’s the good manager or the bad one.
Evan Rachel Wood is surprisingly very good in a juicy role as Molly, that allows to show her being sexy and a little bit mysterious but also emotional and vulnerable. She shows some great range and has an even more believable character arc. Marisa Tomei and Jeffrey Wright aren’t in here as much as the film may make you think, but they’re also very good as well and round out the cast to perfect effect.
Consensus: Though there are a lot of messy things about The Ides of March, Clooney makes up for it with a very interesting story that gets better as the film goes along, and a cast full of great star that bring so much to each of their characters.
Isn’t fearing for your life the one thing that fishing is not all about?
Veteran fisherman Billy Tyne (George Clooney) has had a run of disappointing catches and is determined to change his luck by going beyond the normal reach of New England fishing boats to the remote Flemish Cap. But in doing so, he risks everything. Once at sea, he hears about a huge storm building up, but is convinced he can beat it back to Gloucester with an enormous catch.
Just looking at that poster on the right makes me just get the willy’s because the sea is always something that has interested me because it’s so huge and just feels so spread-out that if you get lost there, you’ll never be found.
This film gave me those little chills here and there during the film but it was more about the spectacle of this film. The special effects here are very good and a lot of detail to the film such as; how the waves look, what the hurricane looks like, and everything else that has to do with the hurricane. All of it looks good and will definitely keep you loving the eye-candy.
However, I think that’s all this film really wanted to be anyway. The story is pretty generic but isn’t told in any fresh or effective way to actually have us care what happens to these characters. I felt myself not really caring that these crew members get past the hurricane, and rather that just Marky Mark get out of there. In case you don’t know, I love that guy. He’s so cool.
Director Wolfgang Petersen is good with what he does, but he doesn’t really do much to help this film. Every once and awhile we would get a little fishing montage of how happy these guys are that their all catching fish but there’s not much else to them except for maybe one character. All the rest are just cliches, and if their not cliches, then their just characters that don’t really have many other dimensions to them because we never see them actually talking. They just do their work on the ship and then their done. Oh and then there’s huge hurricane that supposed to make me care for them.
Though the drama doesn’t work, I still have to say that I was on the edge of my seat here with plenty of suspense and just an overall fun feeling that this film gave me. I didn’t quite care much for the actual characters themselves, I actually cared about just who would die, where, when, and why. The film doesn’t really give into too many cliches when its starting to come down home-stretch and that at least kept me watching more and more.
The whole cast here is star-studded but kind of lame. George Clooney is the least “George Clooney” I’ve ever see him be here as Captain Billy Tyne; Mark Wahlberg was of course my favorite as Bobby; John C. Reilly had the most heart in this film as Dale; and Diane Lane is sexy but not very good in this role as Christine. The rest of the cast has the likes of William Fichtner, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, John Hawkes, and Allen Payne. All of these members do their best but other than that, they aren’t really given much to work with here.
Consensus: The Perfect Storm is nowhere near perfect but has plenty of very good special effects, and tense moments, but doesn’t really have much drama when it comes to it’s story and instead of being a compelling story, it just tells the story and the characters just as they are.
Not your average, sympathetic war film.
George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg and Ice Cube star as a group of American soldiers stationed in Iraq at the end of the Gulf War. When the three arguably wise men find a map they believe will take them to a huge cache of stolen Kuwaiti gold hidden near their base, they embark on a secret mission that’s destined to change everything.
The Gulf War just seems like a war that was basically a total joke. It only lasted for about a year, if not even that, and barely anybody got killed in it. So it was pretty cool to see a fun take on a war, that didn’t seem even energetic at all.
David O. Russell is a crazy mofo, but is a really great director. The one strength that Russell uses here is that he blends drama, action, and a little hint of comedy altogether but it doesn’t once get annoying like most films that blend genres do. The fact that this isn’t like any other war film is not the real reason it’s great it’s because of what this film does and actually talks about. Russell does some pretty innovative stuff here with his direction, whether it’s using a slow-mo shot to show the bullets hitting a person, or a moving image of the sky, or even an awesome image of showing what sepsis wound looks like. Russell is a very gritty director and he uses this to his ability, to bring out the real dirt and mud that was The Gulf War.
The real strength of this film is located within it’s script that Russell did himself as well. The real reason why this script works so well is because the drama is here and ways heavy on the story, there are still many moments of actual dark comedy that will probably have you laughing and wondering just exactly why you laughed here. The story starts off really quick and comedic with the sounds of The Beach Boys in the air, but soon changes into a very dark, haunting, and disturbing take on the war. You start to really get behind this story because the satire is there, and the political commentary which comments on the U.S.A’s involvement with foreign affairs will ring true and actually have you very angry as to where this story starts to take you. But this is also an action film and there’s plenty of enough thrills and spills to hold over any adrenaline junkie, but it’s more a political critique than an action/war film.
My only problem with this film is that sometimes I do feel like Russell get’s a little out-of-hand with the artistic side of his directing. I’m not going to lie, he does some pretty cool stuff here with everything he shows, but there are many times that I feel like he just gets a little too over his head with this artsy-fartsy crap he does. Also, by the end of the film it does get a little preachy, but I have to say this didn’t totally bother me, I just noticed it right away.
George Clooney and David O. Russell got in a huge brawl on-set during the filming of this film, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t turn in a good performance himself. Clooney basically plays the George Clooney he plays in every film but it always work because he has that cool vibe that always helps his character’s and is just totally sweet and smooth. He is all of that and a little more here as Archie Gates. Mark Wahlberg is amazing here as Troy Barlow because his character is a very human person that just wants to do what is right, and never wants to just kill anyone to kill anyone. Ice Cube is also great as the black grunt, Chief Elgin, and it’s kind of sad to watch this, knowing that this is his last film that actually showed that he any street cred left. Damn TBS! Spike Jonze is also very funny and good as the dumb hick, Conrad Vig, and it’s a very rare performance because now that Jonze has found his niche as a director, we may never see him in front of the screen again. This is a pretty strange head-lining cast but they all do real well with this very challenging material that gives them the opportunity to show their dramatic depths as actors, as well as their comedic timing too and they pull it off. The rest of the cast is very good as well with the likes of Jamie Kennedy, Judy Greer, and Mykelti Williamson aka Bubba.
Consensus: Though it gets a little preachy by the end, David O Russell’s Three Kings is still a smart and innovative blend of action, drama, war, and comedy that shows The Gulf War for the crap that it was and how we can all learn from our mistakes.
What the hell Kevin Smith?
Jimmy Monroe (Bruce Willis) and off-kilter Paul Hodges (Tracy Morgan) are two suspended cops trying to track down a stolen and very valuable 1950s baseball card. Along the way, they encounter a Mexican beauty and countless other characters and get entangled with the mob.
Being a fan of Kevin Smith, and knowing just how much people really do hate his films, I was able to actually like this. However, here that was not the case.
Probably the main problem here is that Kevin Smith is just a director here, and not a writer. BIG MISTAKE! I love Smith as a writer, but as a director he can’t do much cause in all honesty what does he really know about directing an action scene? Most of his movies are about just people talking about getting bloweys, Star Wars, or Ass to Mouth. Hiring Kevin Smith as your writer/director is like hiring George Clooney as your doctor, he can only pretend to be good at it. I’m sorry about all this hate Kev, but really man, I just was not even having any fun here.
The script should have been written by Smith because I definitely know that if the direction wasn’t that good, at least I would have laughed a lot at what these guys had to say. Well, sadly that’s not the case because two schmucks wrote this, and just bring bad joke, after bad joke here and none of this works. The humor here could be classified as juvenile, or just simply “toilet humor”, but this film just seems like their really trying to gun for laughs, and the random sequence of non-stop film references didn’t help either.
What you need for a great buddy-cop film is chemistry, and these two do not have it. I think Tracy Morgan is hilarious when he’s saying weird things and stuff that doesn’t make sense in a very serious way. However, he’s not the guy you hand a script to that has hard jokes and has punch-lines to them. I got a couple of chuckles here and there mainly from him, but nothing that special. Bruce Willis seemed that he only had about 2 different emotions, either asleep or screaming. Willis really does look like he’s hating every second of this film, and sad to say I’m right there with him. Also, don’t be fooled but Seann William Scott isn’t in this film that much, and although he’s a little amusing, his character is just dumb in the first place. Also wasted in this cast is Kevin Pollak, Adam Brody, Rashida Jones, and Jason Lee.
Consensus: The gags are stale, the jokes are unfunny, and the action makes you want to yawn. To call Cop Out unwatchable is an understatement, this is just total shit, and it really is sad to see from a Kevin Smith fan’s standpoint, that this was actually done by him.
I still wonder what those NASA people see up there.
Steven Soderbergh’s sci-fi thriller finds Dr. Chris Kelvin (George Clooney) aboard the space station Prometheus, whose crew had been investigating the planet Solaris and subsequently ceased all communications — without explanation — with Earth. Dr. Kelvin finds out exactly what happened and is given a chance to revisit an old love (Natascha McElhone) … but can he really go home again?
Director Steven Soderbergh is the real brains of this film. I almost felt like at times I was watching a remake of 2001: A Space Odyssey by how he moved this story. Soderbergh does a great job of keeping an overall mood and pace with this film, because sometimes you really get no sounds or music, just silence and the sound of people the space-ship. I sometimes felt like I was trapped on this space-ship with these people as well, and the feeling is very creepy in a way.
There is also a lot more substance to this film than I expected. This film actually had some moving moments that bring out the emotional level within this film, and actually raise a couple of questions as well. Do we see other people as they are, or do they only exist through our own ideas about them? The planet can read the man’s mind and reproduce his dead wife, but he soon becomes depressed because he questions how well he really knew her in the first place. The planet itself cannot supply what he has in his own mind. All of this really did work for me, and actually had me thinking about it all after wards.
However, this film will frustrate the hell out of you. The film has a very snail-like slow pace that sometimes gets off the ground, but other times just keeps moving slowly and slowly. Some will be annoyed by this, and some won’t really mind, but it’s not just the slow pace that is bothering, it’s also the story in a way. I liked how the story had a deeper meaning than I originally thought, but the way the story pans out on film, didn’t work mainly because it was very confusing. We don’t know who’s side this is being told from either Clooney’s or McElhone’s, and we don’t know when the ending is, or hell for that matter, when the beginning is. I still am wondering how this film all came to be, but I will say that I wish it was structured better.
George Clooney does a good job in this lead role, and plays a more subdued character than usual, but he has a hard task here. His character is reliant on tons and tons of emotion, mainly because of what this character goes through over time, and Clooney does nail it. Natascha McElhone is also very sweet as Clooney’s old flame, and she brings out a lot of emotion within her character that was needed as well. Jeremy Davies is here and brings charm and comedy to the film, while Viola Davis is pretty strong as usual. The cast is not very big, which I admired since it was a Hollywood production, and I must say they old do pretty well.
Consensus: Though it could have been structured a lot better than it was, Solaris is intelligently directed, and brings up emotional questions about how we view other human beings, and their existence, however this is not for everybody.
I guess firing people isn’t as easy as it seems.
Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) racks up miles flying around the country firing employees on behalf of companies. But he faces losing the job he savors to recent college grad Natalie Keener (Anna Kendrick) — and losing the ability to escape emotional ties to anything. A connection he builds with Alex Goran (Vera Farmiga), however, might change his outlook on the future.
I reviewed this film awhile back, and my whole attention wasn’t on it fully. So I think what I missed out on then, I’ll understand more clearly now, and I’m so glad I made that decision.
The best thing about this film is it’s incredibly honest screenplay. These people in the 21st century, are going through big economic problems, and the situations they talk about in this film, is very, very true. Most of it is very dramatic, and kind of sad, but there is also a great deal of humor within this screenplay that works.
Writer/Director Jason Reitman gives us a perfect glimpse into the country we live in, around the year 2009. People are losing jobs left and right, many are sad, while others, are still trying to find a way to find happiness in this world. It’s a character study, that has a great deal of depth, mainly cause it feels authentic, and when you see those tragic “firing” scenes, you are just taken back by how real they actually are. I wasn’t in tears to be honest, but those scenes, as well as others, to tug on your heart strings for awhile. And I would have never thought that would have happened to me with George Clooney in the lead.
The problem I had with this film was that the execution at the end, was a little too bumpy. I can’t give too much away, but the transformation of our main character at the end, just seems a bit awkward, and not believable, which sucks, because this whole film seemed so real.
The main character, Ryan Bingham, is so very selfish, and cocky, but George Clooney actually plays this character well. He adds a lot of depth, and believability to the character, so that we can actually stand to be on this trip with him. Anna Kendrick plays this stuck-up business girl very well, because we have seen that act done many, many times before, but she makes it less annoying, and more cute to say the least. Vera Farmiga‘s character gave me a great glimpse into her acting skills, because now I know she can pull off roles like this. She is very good at playing this cool chick, that seems so awesome to be around, but yet, there’s just something about her that still makes you question it all. Her and Clooney create a great chemistry together on screen, that makes their more romantic scenes, seem actually believable. Let’s also not forget the short, but good side performances from the likes of J.K. Simmons, Danny McBride, Jason Bateman, Zach Galifianakis, and Amy Morton.
Consensus: Up in the Air may start to slow down by the end, however, is highly entertaining with its great script, with enough funny moments, and dramatic moments, that are provided by incredibly strong performances from the three leads.
Looked like it was a lot of fun for the crew, but I wish it was as fun for me.
Journalist Bob Wilton (Ewan McGregor) latches onto an unbelievable story in Iraq when he meets Lyn Cassady (George Clooney), a man of mysterious origins who reveals he was a “warrior monk” trained by the U.S. Army to develop psychic powers. Jeff Bridges co-stars as Lyn’s mentor, the man who dreamed up the top-secret operation.
The film starts of saying, “trust us, much more of this story is true than you would believe” which is odd as we believe very little of it, actually we believe none of it, full stop. Which then the film then tries and gets you to buy in to the story, and whether you believe in it or not, you admire it, and you really enjoy it. And that’s where I think the film does its best at. It contains a lot of original and fun ideas at how these soldiers are trained.
The problem with the film is that it dives too much into dark humor and satire, that is pretty hit-and-completely miss. When it comes to making a joke on the war at hand now, this doesn’t bring out the best statement. I think some of the jokes were funny, but others were just completely confusing, cause I didn’t know whether or not if it was a joke, or the story itself was actually serious.
Most of the anguish in this film comes from its all over the place tone. I think audiences, including myself won’t know what to take as funny, because the trailers had it all out to be a knee-slapping fun fest of laughter, but when you get to the film, all you see is a bunch of jokes focused on McGregor and Star Wars jokes, because get it, he was in the film. Oh the laughter. It doesn’t get compelling at all, and once its over your not totally taken away by the story itself. And it almost feels like the film was afraid to get edgy at all, and why, I don’t know. It had the R rating and if it went over that edge, the film probably would have been a funnier film.
However, if there was one thing to praise the most in this film it would have to be its hilarious cast. McGregor can’t get the right accent as an American, but he does play the lead with enough insight into his own character, to actually have us care for him, and like him a lot more than the beginning had it out to be. Clooney is simply hilarious as the quirky Lyn, and although he still feels like George Clooney, it doesn’t mean he wasn’t still entertaining. Kevin Spacey is given a lesser role, and does OK with the material he’s given it’s just I wished there was more for him to show. off. Bridges is basically playing The Dude in uniform, and well it works almost every time.
Consensus: A future cult classic, The Men Who Stare at Goats could have been better given the right tone, touch, and writing, but still has enough funny moments, with enough good performance to satisfy, though it still disappoints.
Finally saw it after such a long wait!
Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) racks up major miles flying around the country firing employees on behalf of companies. But he faces losing the job he savors to Natalie Keener (Anna Kendrick) — and losing the ability to escape emotional ties to anything. A connection he builds with Alex Goran (Vera Farmiga), however, might change his outlook on the future.
This is the one film when I first saw the trailer, was barely at all impressed. Then after awhile the film started to get huge press, and well finally I gave it a look.
This is the third film from Director Jason Reitman, who has also done Thank You For Smoking and Juno, and gives a lot of his usual trade marks. The writing from Reitman is just flawless as it hits every note right, and makes this film seem so believable. The writing is funny, dark, and also very real which brings a lot more appeal to the film.
The whole problem I had with this film was that the characters never really transform into better and different people. I mean at the end of the film we never see how Clooney has transformed, and the whole ending just ends up being a very awkward execution.
Clooney does bring back the charm that made us fall in love with him early in his career, but he doesn’t go so deep for me. Yeah, he is a guy that understands his job and life, but never shows that he is actually taking it seriously and more of as a joke. Farmiga and Kendrick are great as the supporting cast ladies, and add a lot more romance to the film that doesn’t quite seem needed.
The one thing I really liked about this film that actually does do it for me is that its drama element to the film is genuine. The message that Reitman is trying to show us, doesn’t feel so preachy, and helps the movie I think. This film applies to so much of how Americans are feeling with the falling economy and its just so fresh to get somebody bring this message up so well.
Consensus: Up in the Air doesn’t convey the emotional depth it could have, but features very realistic writing, and a message from Reitman that isn’t preachy as much as it is true.
Request from my bud Matt. Keep on sending requests everyone so I can review one of yours.
When Mr. Fox’s nightly raids on three nearby farms raise the ire of the selfish farmers, he must outwit the men’s increasingly outrageous plans to catch him in this animated adaption of the Roald Dahl book. As the farmers’ schemes take a toll on his hungry family, Mr. Fox must find a new way to get his paws on the bounty. Wes Anderson directs, and George Clooney, Owen Wilson, Bill Murray and Jason Schwartzman lend their voice-over talents.
The one thing I may note about this film is that it has the appeal to younger children with its cute animation, and PG rating. But the jokes here will probably be too smart for children, and most likely go over their heads. I don’t think there’s anything inappropriate here, but it surely isn’t for the kiddies.
Once again, Wes Anderson allows us to see the world through his eyes. I think it is so cool that Anderson can make an animated film, and you can still look at it knowing its a Wes Anderson movie. Basically anything that seems tired in a live-action movie, completely works here. Cause your not used to seeing a badger puppet do the same things that a human would do in another Wes Anderson film.
The visuals for this film are very splendid. It looks so good, and very exciting. You feel like you are seeing a world with these creatures, but also with these humans and not only does it move along real well with the animation, at some points it looks too good to be true.
I did like some of the humor for this film, I just didn’t think it held up quite as well in this as it does with plenty of others from Wes Anderson. There is little quirky and quick jokes that are amusing at first, but then at times the jokes feel a bit too forced and not placed all too well.
Clooney as Mr, Fox wasn’t the best choice to be truly honest. I felt like he was being too much of George Clooney and not trying to be Fantastic Mr. Fox, like he was put out to be. The best job here is Schwartzman, who although is playing a young teenager, still seems believable as a teen full of angst and trying to look for understanding in his life.
Consensus: Fantastic Mr. Fox is cute, at times funny, and visually splendid. I just didn’t feel like the jokes were too flattering, and the voices could have been a bit better.
Jeez, war films in 1998 took over the Oscars.
With an all-star cast — featuring Sean Penn, George Clooney, Nick Nolte and Adrien Brody — director Terrence Malick’s lyrical and beautiful retelling of James Jones’s novel about the 1942 battle for Guadalcanal was nominated for seven Oscars. With narration by Pvt. Witt (Jim Cavaziel), the men of C-Company become a tight-knit group as they each individually face the horrors of war to hold onto a key-positioned airfield.
The Thin Red Line, is basically a remake of the original 1964 flick, and to be truly honest after watching this film, I don’t think I will have to dig back into the archives and watch that.
Most War films over-exploit the gore and the violence of the war, but never really capture the feelings of the war within it’s soldiers. This film, captured all the feeling imaginable. We really do get to feel what these characters feel through a lot of emotional and overall beautiful images that are being narrated over by soldiers that are present in the film.
Immediately, I was caught up in this film, even in its first frame that features an alligator. It not once lost my interest until the very end where I did start to believe the moral story of good and evil started to wane on, and become a little boring and I didn’t that there wasn’t any material to work from.
Terrence Malick returns to film-making after his 20 year absence, and it doesn’t feel like he missed those years at all. He without a doubt capture the right emotion at the right time with every little scene. The cinematography that he worked on really made us feel the intensity of fighting an enemy that was hidden. Malick should’ve won Best Director for this film because although he doesn’t steer this film into perfection, he does steer into the right and very inspired direction.
Visually, this film is just one of the most beautiful films I have ever seen. There are some scenes that are so beautiful, so touching, and so inspirational that I couldn’t just help but shed a tear. Some scenes as I stated before are over-lapped by little narration from the soldiers, but you almost forget about the speaking and can’t stop but gaze at how beautiful the look and feel this movie really does have.
The all-star cast really does a good job in this film and really do step away from their public images and create characters that we like and can relate to. Out of the whole cast Nick Nolte is who I really think does the best. He is angry, ruthless, and also very misguided and you can see that coming out of his performance. I wish that there was more time for these big stars to interact with one another but overall I was pleased with the way some of these characters were used. I also liked how the Japanese weren’t portrayed as these savage killers who have no souls. Instead, they were shown with having as much fear and terror as much as the U.S., and that’s what really separates this film from others.
The only complaint that I really do think killed this film to be as much as a success as Saving Private Ryan, was that there are way too many scenes of just down time. In SPR, the down time was actually interesting and you actually got a sense of what those characters lives we’re like before war. However, in this the down time is submitted to beautiful visuals but overall not very interesting dialouge that I thnk made this film not win one Oscar.
Consensus: The Thin Red Line is visually astonishing, incredibly-well directed, and features amazingly true messages about how the war turns people into animals. However, the film offers to much time for boredom and doesn’t quite connect as well as Saving Private Ryan.
Mexico sure is a place full of wild crazy things, such as vampires, yeah OK!
Robbers-on-the-lam Seth (George Clooney) and Richard Gecko (Quentin Tarantino) take an ex-preacher (Harvey Keitel)and his kids hostage. On a race to the Mexican border, they rendezvous at a cantina, not knowing the owners and clientele are blood thirsty vampires.
The film starts out not that strong as a Hostage road drama, and then right in the middle switches gears into an vampire slaying movie. The film stars and is written by Tarantino, as Robert Rodriguez directs in what surely is to be labeled as a comedy-horror film.
From Dusk Till Dawn is basically a film that has no original content. Much of the content is taken from other films and most of it doesn’t seem original. Many of the features such as one bite and you turn into them and the conventional stab in the heart to kill are all taken from others and basically ruins an addition to the horror genre. Most of the originality starts off in the film and then ends in the middle and then it basically becomes something else we’ve already seen.
The film really does start to lose itself by the end of the film and actually started to lose me. I didn’t like the two characters, Clooney and Tarantino, and I really didn’t care what happened to these guys and they never really feel regret for what they have done in the past. When you feel like you just what the two main characters just to die then you have a problem with a film. The film by the last act starts to feel lazy and very tired and the action starts to lag into a very predictable boat.
The good things about this film are very noticeable as well. Tarantino does have a knack for a very clever written script and a fast-paced energetic directing job from Robert Rodriguez. They both have a good combination of making a very wise tongue-in-cheek horror action film. The special effects in this film are very good and don’t look like actors in costumes, although that’s what they are.
Clooney does an OK job but I will give him his credit since this is his first big movie role. The rest of the cast is pretty good and funny at showing all these opposite people who come together to face vampire’s and actually does prove some good laughs.
Consensus: The film is highly energetic filled with over-the-top action that will keep you glued, but I expected more from Tarantino and Rodriguez teaming together and didn’t feel my needs were there.