I love movies. Kind of an obvious statement I know, let me try to explain….
I get asked the question “Oh you like movies, what’s your favorite movie?” a lot. Anyone who loves film HATES this question with a burning passion. We suddenly have a list of films that run through our heads with no way to pick just one. The thoughts seem to gravity around this…
"I really love Indiana Jones but I just saw The Dark Knight again last week and that was just SOO good! But I love Singing in the Rain. I DON’T FUCKING KNOW!"
A follow up question that comes after you explain you “don’t really have a favorite” is usually…. “Well then what’s your favorite genre of film?”
To which any film fan would go. “Who the fuck doesn’t like all genres of film?” A good documentary (Man on Wire) is less entertaining than a good horror film? (The Shining) That question is even stupider than the last.
BUT! Through the years there have been many films that stand the test of time. Films that become “cult” classics. The TLA on South Street is playing 3 of these films in their full glory (with alcohol in the back of the room ready to warm up even the shyest of the audience up.)
With four new movies coming out this weekend, there’s a good amount to choose from if you’re planning on going out to a theater to escape the heat. Based off of only their trailers, Cinedork.com writer Lauren Clay attempts to help you navigate this weekend’s to tell you which ones look awesome, which films seem bizarre, and what movies look downright cringe-worthy amongst the new releases in this edition of “New In Theaters.”
Madea’s Witness Protection
After almost a dozen appearances as Madea, what is Tyler Perry going to bring to the table in Witness Protection that will change things up a bit? The answer: probably nothing. I canât say that Iâve seen a Madea movie from start to finish, but I have seen decent chunks of many of them, which is more than enough for me. Each of these movies is not exactly offering up something new (oh look! Madea deals with the TSA!) Â and the comedy just seems forced. But for those that are fans of Perry and his Madea franchise, this film will probably be satisfying. As far as everyone else…Â Cringe-Worthy.
Magic Mike has a couple of things going for it: it clearly knows its audience and the timing of its release (in the thick of the 50 Shades of Grey craze) couldnât be better. Women have been buzzing about this movie for monthsâjust the idea of being able to ogle shirtless men without the shame of going to an actual strip club is appealing to females (for that reason alone, Iâm sure it will have a solid opening weekend). Magic Mike could turn out to be a surprisingly captivating movie. Donât get me wrongâIâm not saying this is going to be âmovie of the yearâ caliber, but I think itâs going to be better than people expect. And having Steven Soderbergh as the director doesnât hurt the filmâs credibility. Awesome.
People Like Us
Based on the trailer, People Like Us seems to have fallen into the trap of the typical rom-com, minus the romance seeing as the main characters are related, and we hope we know that they wonât hook up. Somehow it still seems like itâs going to end predictably. While I have been known to occasionally get invested in rom-coms (Iâm a girl, itâs what we do), Iâm undecided on this one. It just doesnât seem like the characters are going to be captivating. Plus, knowing that this is writer/director Alex Kurtzmanâs first foray into rom-com territory (his past credits include sci-fi and action fare such as Star Trek, Transformers and Mission: Impossible III) doesnât give me a lot of hope. These genres are so different that it just doesnât seem likely that Kurtzman can make a smooth transition. I predict that this will be one of those movies that isnât bad for a Friday movie night at home, but wonât necessarily be worth paying the high ticket prices at the theater. Bizarre.
In his feature-film debut as a writer and director, Seth MacFarlane proves that there are no boundaries to his imagination. Heâs probably one of the few people that can pull off an out-there concept like a pot-smoking, trash-talking teddy bear, but if the trailer is any indication, it works. I give MacFarlane props for taking something as simple and innocent as a teddy bear and making it hilarious. The only thing that bothers me slightly is that MacFarlane (the voice of Ted) doesnât deviate away from sounding like Peter Griffinâwith all the voices he does on Family Guy (Peter, Brian, Stewie), I would think he could stray from that at least a little bit. But I digress. I have high hopes for this film.Â Awesome.
In John Carter, a wild cowboy (Carter) is suddenly jolted to Mars. On the “Red Planet,” Carter is joined up (most unwillingly) with a race of 12-foot high creatures that are (directly comparable to a Navi with 4 arms?) part of a wild civilization stuck in the middle of a war between the human(ish) race inhabiting the planet. Sounds like Avatar right? It’s really not.
John Carter takes the fun energy of Avatar and slams it head on with a story of serious loss. What Avatar lacked was a lot of deeper meaning and emotion from it’s characters. Sure Sam Worthington lost his legs and his brother, but this quick montage never felt like it motivated him beyond the first few scenes. John Carter’s motivations are clear but run deep and are continuous throughout the film. Beyond that this film creates a fantastic world that is easy to be engrossed in. Many science fiction stories of the present forget to create a world that you can be transported to but John Carter does it and does it well. The most truly important part of any science fiction epic is to have a story that stands the test of time and holds up to the original source material. John Carter’s story is one of it’s best elements as it deeply roots you in John Carter’s shoes wanted nothing more than for him to succeed.
It’s hard to slight this film beyond a few minor flaws but these flaws keep this film from being great. From John Carter’s Val Kilmer impression the whole movie (Which at times sounds like a Christian Bale Batman) to the over-the-top nature of the film at certain parts, John Carter lacks focus. At times it feels real, rough, and raw and that is what makes this film great. But there are aspects of this film that are so off-the-wall it can take the audience out of the film, make you turn to the person next to you and say “what the fuck is going on!”
It’s great but not super great. Instead you get this good film, that you are glad you saw, but yet doesn’t leave going “That’s the greatest thing I’ve seen EVER!”
Jason and Sophie (Hamish Linklater & Miranda July respectively) are content living their bland, boring lives in Los Angeles. Jason is an Information Tech guy and Sophie teaches dance to little kids. They got lazy with their ambitions and goals, never really wanting to do anything extraordinary with their lives. It’s not until they decide to adapt a cat (a fucking cat) that they re-prioritize their lives.
All of a sudden, they go from being 35 to 50 (mentally). And both characters decide they need a drastic change; so they quit their jobs and aim for something greater, with little success. This little feline, with one paw in a cast, inadvertently derails these two people into doing something meaningful.
As I watched these two people go throughout their lives, I couldn’t help but feel like this could be me in 10 years. Showing what it’s like to have creative impulses and not know where or how to direct them at times. This film also adds to the argument of LA being a soul-sucking, creative void. Setting the film in Brooklyn or Philadelphia wouldn’t have the same tone or affect on the film or the characters.
Miranda July’s direction was subtle. Most scenes involved the actors doing their jobs and taking the characters to a new place through interactions with other people, letting the scenes basically carry themselves. The audience is meant to focus on these people and their reactions to situations rather than everything else in the film.
The moral of the story; Don’t wait for things to happen. Get off your ass and make them happen, cause one day you’ll wake up and you will be 50 smoking pot in your parents basement or at a dead end job wanting more with your life and wishing you didn’t stick around and watch it fade away.
These films are all the same….. Same format, same bad acting, same bad plot, but what makes Final Destination 5 work is that they took it all to the next level. EXTREME!!!! MOUNTAIN DEW!!! FOOTBALL!!! SAUSAGE!!!!
The premise of these movies, if you aren’t familiar with them, is that there is an elaborate death sequence at the beginning of each film in which every main character dies. This is then shown to be a “vision” in which the main character sees the future. Afterwards he goes and grabs a bunch of his or her friends and saves them from the impending disaster. Soon death comes to kill them all because “there isn’t enough room for them on the earth”
I remember watching the first few Final Destination movies and being blown away by the violent death sequences that always took you by surprise. A character would die in the most elaborate and creative way that would not only shock the viewer by how violent it was but by how it happened as well. But now, audiences expect that. So how do you fix that? Take it further and they totally fucking did.
This film was made for 3D and it bleeds it, literally. The deaths are all designed to pop out at the audience like a heart sticking out while resting on top of the sailboat or an iron stick stabbing through someones eye and into the audience. Even without that 3D even this film retains a healthy level of violence but with the 3D it really shines. There are mass amounts of blood and gore for any horror fan. I don’t remember seeing a horror film in ages that had the audience going as much as it did with Final Destination 5. Their excitement is what makes a film like this worth seeing, especially in a theater, especially in 3D.
As much as I hate 3D at times films that really embrace it and make it work are the reason 3D is a viable artistic medium, creating emotions that you can with a 2D film, but are over exaggerated when it literally comes out in your face.
If you saw Piranha 3D this is basically the same thing with a bit more surprise and less just pure destruction. If you can’t handle blood you won’t make it through the beginning credits and you sure as hell won’t make it through the rest of the movie.
If our review was for film quality then it would be a 4 out of 10, but luckily our reviews are less snobby than that and based on pure entertainment value. Did you expect fucking citizens cane walking into final destination 5? Or did you expect to be shocked and surprised?
When you take a step back and look at Glee the 3D Concert Movie you see that this film should have been called “Glee 3D - The egotistical journey about how amazing our show is God Damn it we are rich now.” Sure the film itself is fun, inspirational, and cute at moments but it shows how people become better because they watch Glee. It’s like Abraham lincoln watching a film about himself and how much of a difference he made to the world while making a buttload of cash off of it. That’s basically what this film is, a film that is telling the audience how great this tv show is and that people who watch it are better because of it. I think the show has a wonderful message and themes that very few other mainstream shows dive into, but there’s much more ego than that here. All the gleeks watching the film are paying $15 to see a bunch of other people tell them they love the show too.
The concert is basically the numbers on the show performed on stage which isn’t really incredibly amazing to watch besides a sexy number with Brittany in her Brittany Spears costume. 3D boobs are fantastic! The films most enjoyable moments are the egotistical studies of the people who watch Glee in the middle of the performances.
Im not going to lie, I love the show. I’ve seen every episode and this movie was like crack to me. But dissecting it, especially looking at it in a larger sense, it feels like listening to a narcissistic asshole talk about how amazing he is for an hour and a half with some really awesome karaoke built in.
Morgan Spurlock is a director, if not conscious actor, that creates an energy that can only be described as the complete opposite of michael Moore. His energy is fun, witty, and full of information to back up his claims. Comparatively, you could say he is the Daily Show / Colbert Report of documentaries. He pokes fun, but not to the point he purposefully tries to stab people in the back.
That is the case with POM Wonderful Presents The Greatest Movie Ever Sold, at least.
While explaining the process of product placement and marketing Spurlock is also learning about it which comes through as a completely relatable trait to the audience. Without being too much of an expert he dove into the field and found out the questions normal people were looking to find out and would find fascinating. Think of it as you explaining what you do for a living, the unknown factor makes it that much more interesting than you being bored to death behind a desk all day poking yourself in the leg wi a pencil as to not stab it in your eye.
That excitement makes pom wonderful absolutely the most entertaining film I’ve seen in a long time, and if your in advertising, it’s even that much more interesting. The back and forth Spurlock goes through to get product placement and to avoid it is mind boggling.
His case presents both sides of the argument where people and filmmakers defend product placement as well as tear it down. Leaving the film you still continue to fight about which side is the right one which few documentaries end up doing. Most of them are so one sided that you either hate it or you are all for it. This is much more fair and balanced.
In conclusion. This amazing (POM Wonderful) film is purely entertaining (Like staying at the Hyatt) and fun to watch (in Old Navy clothing) documentary is worth your money, worth the theater experience, literally just worth it all (Like a trip on Jet Blue Airlines)
Hannah is an example of what an action movie should be. It’s visually engaging, the story intrigues the audience, and the action, kicks major ass. All of those combined equal this amazing action film that is so edgy that it is in a league of it’s own comparatively.
I have not seen a serious action movie as of late that has been as highly polished as Hannah. The original concept of this film borrows from a lot of elements from other movies, but even so it’s own feeling and twist, creates something fresh. Movies like Battle Los Angeles are directed to a T, however their plots and their characters all feel so damn reused that it feels like I’m watching the same movie I saw a few years ago. The originality is completely lost. Hannah lacks a bit in this department, feeling very Bourne esque, but it still diverges enough from that formula to feel like something new.
This film is highly adult, even with a kid as the main role. The cursing, the blood, the everything, there is not reason for a kid to see this film. The grit goes with the style of the film. Without that, this film would be a PG-13 flaming piece of crap. Hannah’s roughness is what makes it feel different but yet feel so generically fun.
If your looking for something to hit your action nerves go see Hannah. It will shock you with it’s unique style and awesome visuals, not to mention the soundtrack that is worth getting with or without seeing the movie. Chemical Brother’s KICK ASS!
8 Little girls kicking ass movies out of 10
Matt Damon. Emily Blunt. Two actors I have plenty of respect for. Mix in John Slattery from Mad Men and you have yourself a winner! (Well… mostly). If ever there was a movie that went on too long this is it.
First of all let me point out that this movie is the complete opposite of a Bourne Supremacy film or anything of that nature. This movie is meant to be thoughtful and have a romantic playfulness that at times gets a little to “playful.” Now I’m not one to spite romantic movies. I love me a good romantic love story like Once for example. However in this movie you keep wondering to yourself if the decisions are worth while or not.With that the references to God and Angels keep your mindset focused outside of the movie, bringing you out of the story. It’s kind of like in the Matrix how there is no real god or Jesus reference, but it’s definitely there. In The Adjustment Bureau is it is bluntly stated through the film which leads the audience in a confusing path.
Even then this film has a lot going for it (for about 65% of the way through). There is one scene in a hospital specifically where the movie loses all of its direction. I could have walked out at the moment happy with what I saw, but it had to continue.
The rest of the film has acting and dialogue fit for a college thesis project film. Dialogue that would make Sylvester Stallone laugh. It does need a more logical ending point but I’d rather have nothing than what I got…..
So the idea of The Illusionist sounds amazing. Another Triplets of Belleville, a quirky comedy with little dialogue showing the beauty of the world through these characters. The problem here is the lack of that beauty from the story. As beautiful the paintings as backdrops are and the fine detail in the animations of the characters the story feels to lack. Mainly the happiness of the story. I don’t mind me some sad endings, I don’t mind me people dying at the end of movies for example, but the lack of all resistance in the end of this made me wish for more. I keep thinking back metaphorically, just like when I was watching somewhere. Where is the story, where is the underlying truths in these characters. In the illusionist i find some, way more than in Coppola’s attempt, but the lack of a clean resolution keeps me from caring. Picture a 200 meter sprint runner, a beautiful female (or male) amazing to look at. They sprint for half the race and then just walk the rest of the way, look up and go “meh” that’s how i feel about the illusionist. It feels like it gives up. It’s still there, in the race, but there’s not enough to get it across the finish line.
I think the problem in the film is the pedophilia between the old man and girl. Similar to Leon the Professional, we see a relationship between an old man and a young woman. It feels creepy at times making me just lack the overall truthfulness of the film. It make me fear for her safety. It comes from the times we live in in 2011. The concept is hard to play off without continually reminding the audience it’s okay for her to be with the old man, which doesn’t ever come out through the film. Its something that is never challenged in the film, even though it’s an obvious theme throughout.
The movie is gorgeous, just wonderful to look at, but you run into the problem that no one will care about it. Kinda like loving a model with the IQ of a 3rd Grader. She or he may be hot, but do you really want to talk to someone who loves unicorns and rainbows all day every day?