Thursday, October 30, 2014
     

Movie Review

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

"Ideals are peaceful. History is violent."

- "Fury."

"Fury" is aptly titled. The movie, with a story set in the waning days of World War II, is filled with the fury of battle, the fury of civilization devastation and the fury of human emotions.

The movie's title is taken from the nickname "Fury" painted in a white scrawl on the gun-turret of a Sherman tank.

The storyline in "Fury" is based on the heroism of the United States Army Second Armored Division, dubbed "Hell on Wheels."

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

One mark of an entertaining movie is what scenes, lines of dialogue or laughs, tears and thoughts stay with you after you depart the theater.

After I saw "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day," I was still chuckling to myself.

"Alexander," based on the children's book by Judith Viorst, is in the genre of family dilemma comedies. This is somewhat of a lost art in contemporary Hollywood studio film-making since many comedies are animation features or teen and college-age R-rated raunch.

Friday, October 17, 2014

"Gone Girl" is one of the best suspense thrillers in decades. It has thrills, chills, plot twists and turns. At times, it's terrifying.

It's a real nail-biter. (Believe me, I know. I did.)

There are several reasons why you should see "Gone Girl."

First, of all, it's very entertaining. Second, the actors are excellent. Third, the direction is superb.

Finally, because there should be several Oscar nominations, "Gone Girl" should be on your must-see list.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

"The Boxtrolls" is a film more to be admired than loved.

The film utilizes stop-motion animation, whereby each, or several frames, of film are shot with minor adjustments to the figurines before the next shot.

As if to emphasize the exactitude of this process and how painstaking it is, during "The Boxtrolls" end credits, the filmmakers pull back from the set to reveal in fast-motion, and in shadow, a puppet animator guiding each move of one of the film's main characters.

Friday, October 3, 2014

"The Maze Runner" is the latest entry into the genre of movies based on best-selling Young Adult (YA) teen dystopian novels, following on the heels of "The Hunger Games," "Twilight" and "Justin Bieber's Believe."

JK (Just Kidding) about the 2013 Justin Bieber documentary. Then again, given the dystopian trajectory of his career, maybe not.

"Twilight" is a curious mix of corny vampire family in their modern manse scenes and CGI action (no, not those involving Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart).

Thursday, September 25, 2014

If you are fascinated by dolphins and are looking for an entertaining family movie, consider "Dolphins Tale 2."

The charming movie has a good cast, including two outstanding young leads; gentle humor, life lessons, and then there are those dolphins.

Dolphins connect us to the sea. They are human-like in their reactions. Their cherubic faces are in a perpetual state of bliss.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

"Calvary," as with Christianity's New Testament event from which the film derives its title, is difficult, brutal and shocking.

The film begins in a confessional booth in a Roman Catholic church in Ireland where Father James Lavelle (Brendan Gleeson), a fiftysomething Irish priest, is told he will be killed the following Sunday by the very person to whom he is giving confession.

The supplicant boasts that he will revel in killing "a good priest."

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Even though the last day of summer is Sept. 22, the domestic summer movie box office season officially ended Labor Day Weekend.

August, a month when movies not expected to perform well are often released, was particularly robust at the box office, led by "Guardians of The Galaxy," which duked it out with "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles."

August 2014 had a box office tally of about $1 billion. That's 10 percent above August 2013.

Friday, September 5, 2014

"Boyhood" is really annoying.

The characters played by Ethan Hawke, Patricia Arquette and Ellar Coltrane are annoying.

The plotline and scenes in the film by writer-director Richard Linklater are annoying.

And yet, or because, "Boyhood" is about as annoying as real life, the film is a must-see.

That's because, in comparison, you may conclude your life is less annoying than that depicted in "Boyhood."

"Boyhood" is this summer's feel-good movie in reverse.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

The money scene in writer-director Woody Allen's "Magic In The Moonlight" is when Colin Firth bows his head and prays.

Prayer? In a Woody Allen film?

"Magic In The Moonlight" not only challenges preconceived notions about a Woody Allen film, it makes us think about our own concepts of prayer, faith, death and the hereafter.

Of course, this being a Woody Allen film, "Magic In The Moonlight" gives us a lot of laughs in between the philosophical musings.