Friday, August 8, 2014

2014: Bonus: Planes: Fire & Rescue

Planes: Fire & Rescue

Genre: Animation

Main Players: Voices of Dane Cook, Ed Harris, Julie Bowen

General Gist: The second Planes movie where Dusty trains to be a firefighter after getting injured and isn't able to race anymore.

Tiff's Take: 
I didn't see the first Planes so I was going into this one sort of blind and I can't really compare it to the first one.  I went with some kids that were pretty darn excited to see it though.  

From the kids' perspective, this was a hit for the 4 year old boy who is a Planes die hard fan.  It was an entertaining one for the 9 year old boy who was once a Cars die hard fan.  It was a little long for the 6 year old girl who has never been a big fan of either Cars or Planes. 

From my perspective, it was entertaining with fun parts throughout but a little on the long side.  It was also surprisingly serious for a cartoon.  There were a few heavy subjects that might be a little much for sensitive, younger kids.  The original Cars is still probably my favorite.

Tiff's Rate: Matinee

2014: Week 31: Guardians of the Galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy

Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

Main Players:  Chris Pratt, Zoe Zaldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper (voice), Van Diesel (voice)

General Gist: Four unlikely characters find themselves in a battle against Ronan the Accuser when they come in possession of an Orb ,with power to destroy a civilization.

Deb's Take:
I have grown to love the Marvel movies.  I can't say I am no longer a super hero movie fan, because I think the last five I have seen I have really enjoyed.  Tiff and I are having a fun time trying to tie the characters from each Marvel film to each other. 

When I saw the previews for this movie I was skeptical.  It looked sort of goofy and cheesy.  I'm glad the previews were wrong.  This movie was entertaining.  I really enjoyed the humor.  I liked the storyline and the interplay between the characters.  Chris Pratt was a fun actor to watch.   Honestly there wasn't really anything I didn't like about the movie.  Great entertainment, especially if you are a Marvel Fan.

Deb's Rate: Friday Night

Tiff's Take:
Why am I never more excited to see a Marvel movie?  I am always sort of so so about going to one then I always end up really enjoying them.  You think I would learn.

I'll be honest, I really didn't think I would like this one.  Actually I didn't really have a desire to see it at all.  I mean, come on.  One of the characters is a raccoon.  And a tree.  I thought it would be epically stupid.  It was, however, not epically stupid but funny, action-packed and thoroughly entertaining.  Again, why am I surprised?  I can't say this is my favorite Marvel movie (I'm more of a Thor girl) but definitely a good one.

Tiff's Rate: Friday Night

Preview: Might see Transformers for a date night but probably will see something else with just the sis.

2014: Week 30: Lucy


Genre: Action, Sci-Fi

Main Players:  Scarlett Johansson,  Morgan Freeman, Min-Sik Choi

General Gist: A woman is kidnapped and by happenstance, ends up injected with a drug that allows her brain to function at a higher percentage than imaginable.

Deb's Take:
I loved the concept of this movie.  That fact that we as humans use only up to 7-10% of our cerebral cortex is really quite unfathomable.  Also, the fact that we haven't learned, evolved, captured...the ability to use more of our brain is mind boggling.  This movie idea had so much potential.  Predicting what would happen if humans had the capability to tap into a higher brain potential is intriguing.  This movie did lay a different idea out there.  I got the concept, and was interested in the theory, I just feel like the movie wasn't great at it's presentation of the idea.  Hollywood kind of got in the way of this one for me.  The movie played a good spin on brain power, but I wish the action, gun fighting, drug dealers wasn't part of the movie.  I think Scarlett Johansson did well.  I liked her character, and I feel like she captured the personality that the story was setting.  I just didn't feel like the movie tied everything together well.  Morgan Freeman's role could have been much more played out, and I also feel like the movie sort of balked the ending.  Here's a nice little present with a bow...we are done here.  I just wasn't impressed, but I really wanted to be, so rent will give you something to speculate.

Deb's Rate: Rent It

Tiff's Take:
Yeah, I agree.  This movie had a lot of potential.  The concept could have turned into a great movie, like Inception, that really made you think about, well, thinking.  But it really fell short.  One issue with this kind of movie is that if it's not done right it can be really confusion and hard to wrap your, apparently, underutilized brain around.  This one had a little bit of that going on.  And it got a little too philosophical for my liking.  And not because I don't like philosophical but because it didn't fit well with the rest of the movie.  

The acting was okay for me.  I usually really like Scarlett Johansson and I think she did great with what she was supposed to portray but I guess I just didn't really like her character.  It was sort of uninteresting.  The French policeman was sort of a weird addition and Morgan Freeman was boring for me as well.  

What could have been a lot better movie was just sort of blah. 

Tiff's Rate: Rent It

Preview: Guardians of the Galaxy

2014: Week 29: When the Game Stands Tall

When the Game Stands Tall

Genre: Drama

Main Players:  Jim Caviezel, Alexander Ludwig, Michael Chiklis, Laura Dern

General Gist:  True Story of De Le Salle High School football team and their journey from a 151 winning streak with coach Bob Ladouceur.

Deb's Take:
I love a good movie about high school football.  Of course it's even better if it's true.  This movie was amazing.  The movie didn't just follow the season of a high school team, but rather a coach and his endeavour to make high school football about something other than winning.  I was impressed with all of the actors, Jim Caviezel did good, all the actors that played the high school kids did wonderful.  I felt like I was watching the lives of real folks, (which is essence I was).  There was a good message, great connection of characters, and I liked that at the end we got to see some real footage of the team and coach.  All in all this was a winner for me.   This one doesn't come out in theatres until Aug. 22 so mark your calendar!

Deb's Rate: Opening Night

Tiff's Take:
Same goes for this sister.  Even though I'm not a really huge sports fanatic, I do love a good sports movie.  I love the inspiration and talent and competitiveness.  This one had a few more relationship elements rather than just a straight up sports angle which I liked.  I also loved that it was a true story.  Makes it that much more exciting.  The acting was great so not much to complain about there.  This would be a great one to take your hubby to.  

Tiff's Rate: Friday Night

Preview: Lucy and Guardians of the Galaxy

Sunday, July 20, 2014

2014: Week 28: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Genre: Drama, Sci-Fi

Main Players:  Gary Oldman, Keri Russell, Andy Serkis, Jason Clarke

General Gist: 
Genetically evolved Apes come to war with the human race. 

Deb's Take:
I am not a Planet of the Apes Fan.  After seeing this movie, I still am not a fan.  I don't feel like I can really give anyone a good review of this movie, because quite frankly, I thought it was stupid.  I couldn't get past the fact that these Apes were "human" and have evolved to a point where they were equal to man.   I just didn't like it.  So, since I went with my son and husband I will give you their opinions, beause they are more fans than me.  My husband said it was ok, he thought it was too drawn out and sort of boring.  He did think the premise of this one was good, and didn't say it was aweful just not great.  My 13 year old son was a different story.  The whole way home he tried to convince me that I really DID like the movie, but that I just didn't understand it.  UM, no, but good try.  Anyway, he really liked it.  The actors did good, I didn't realize the Apes were actually played by people so that was something interesting.  All in all though, just can't give it kudos.  Although, the 30 year old male who was sitting to my left was obviously touched because he cried through the whole last scene,  like for real....

Deb's Rate:  Don't bother unless you are a fan of Planet of the Apes, if so I suppose a Matinee would do.

Preview: When the Game Stands Tall

Monday, July 14, 2014

2014: Week 27: Tammy


Genre: Comedy

Main Players:  Melissa McCarthy, Susan Sarandon,

General Gist:  A woman loses her job, finds out her husband is cheating, and takes a road trip with her Grandma to run away from it all.

Tiff's Take:
I always look forward to Melissa McCarthy movies because let's face it, she's hilarious.  But time and time again her movies aren't really that great.  I had a feeling this one would be about the same.  Russ actually wanted to see this one because he loves nothing better than a good comedy.  Sadly, both of us were disappointed.  What is it about going to bad movies with Russ?  I swear he's never going to want to go with me again.       

So this one started off pretty funny and had a lot of laugh out loud moments.  But it sort of went downhill from there.  The serious parts just didn't do it for me and the funny parts didn't make up for it.  And although I like Susan Sarandon, I did not think she fit the grandma role.  I mean, at all.  The chemistry between the two just did not do it for me. Overall a bit bust in the casting department.  Actually, just a big bust overall.  My dad even fell asleep during part of it.   

Tiff's Rate: Rent It - only because I like Melissa McCarthy.  If it wasn't for her it would definitely be a Don't Bother.

Deb's Take: 
Melissa McCarthy has never really disappointed me in a movie.  She can always make me laugh.  I was looking for an easy going, comedy, no brainer this week, and with Tiff out of town I took the hubby.  (Little did I know Tiff was going to the same movie too!  We are so good.)  This movie had a little bit of everything.  There was romance, laughs, seriousness, relationships, and even a little action, (ok not much but some).  The movie wasn't anything in depth, it was just entertainment.  Susan Sarandon was good in this, she too doesn't disappoint often.  I liked how the movie took some serious issues, and made them important but not intense.  The whole story was a little off the rocker, but actually could have been real life to some.  If you are looking for some light entertainment, some laughs and a few touching moments this one is pretty good. I also liked that I could walk out of the theatre with some one liners...

Deb's Rate:  Matinee

Preview: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Sunday, June 29, 2014

2014: Week 26: Begin Again

Begin Again

Genre: Drama, 

Main Players:  Keira Knightley, Mark Ruffalo, Adam Levine

General Gist:  A music executive down on his luck discovers a musician who is ready to leave the country after she is jilted by her pop star boyfriend.

Tiff's Take:
Oh boy.  Another movie with music.  This is becoming a common theme.  Going into this one, I didn't realize how much music was actually going to be in the movie.  If I had known I may have been less enthusiastic to go.  But I didn't and I was really looking forward to it.  

Even though Adam Levine, who is pretty darn mainstream, was in this, I wouldn't say this was a mainstream kind of movie.  I like that.  This movie was a tad on the quirky side.  Just a little.  And I like that as well.  It was based in NYC which I love.  It had interesting, unpredictable characters which is always refreshing.  I mostly love Keira Knightley in anything she's in a I like Mark Ruffalo as well.  They were both great in this.  Adam Levine was okay but honestly he didn't have a huge part so it was hard to say whether he was bad or good.  I can't say I'm a huge fan of Adam like my dear sister so he was just sort of neutral for me.  Actually, his character was on the annoying side but I think that was intentional.      

Despite all the singing (which if I'm being honest, I liked in this one), I really enjoyed the characters and the less conventional story.  It seems like the bad movie streak has finally ended.

Tiff's Rate: Friday Night

Deb's Take: 
I love movies with music.  This one was different because it wasn't a musical per se, it was more a movie, about music with music.  Totally different but perfectly conducted.  

Adam Lavine's movie debut, that in itself was enough for me.  He is quite a man, not to mention I like his music A LOT.   Ok, that being said, Adam was amazingly good in this movie.  Maybe because he is a singer/star playing one was pretty much like being himself, but he was extremely natural and never once did I feel like he was struggling to pull off the acting gig.  This was especially important because he was playing opposite Kiera, who was phenomenal.  Ok, her singing was decent, by no means was I floored, but the music fit her.   Mark Ruffalo did great as well.  Really not one person was disappointing in this movie.  The chemistry between all the characters was spot on.  

This movie had everything I love, relationships with deep meaning, conflict, heart, emotion, heartbreak, get it.  I pretty much just melted into my seat and got lost in the story.  I liked that it wasn't a cookie cutter story, I loved the music, and I appreciated the emotions.  What a great film.   I will be going again!  Something I rarely do.  

Deb's Rate:  Opening Night

Preview: Travel might get in the way of both of us being able to go to the movie next week.  But you never know.  We have a way of making it work.  We shall see.