Wednesday, October 1, 2014
     

Movie Review

Friday, December 23, 2011

A lot has been made about the fact that Martin Scorsese he, the director of such urban and urbane and often violent adult fare such as "Shutter Island" (2010), "The Departed" (2006), "Goodfellas" (1990), "Raging Bull" (1980), "Taxi Driver" (1976), "Mean Streets" (1973) has directed a children's movie, "Hugo," much less a 3D children's movie.

Moreover, some movie critics have said that finally, someone, namely, Scorsese, does 3D justice.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Screenwriter-director Alexander Payne is a master of the cinematic moment.

In his most entertaining and critically-acclaimed films, seemingly normal persons exhibit abnormal behavior, often triggered by an event, long-neglected or overlooked, unfulfilled deep-seated needs and desires, or undiagnosed and dormant phobias.

In "Sideways" (2004), Paul Giamatti and Thomas Haden Church get into all kinds of shenanigans in their search for the perfect cabernet in California wine country.

In "About Schmidt" (2002), Jack Nicholson travels to his estranged daughter's wedding.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

"The Muppets" are back.

For those who didn't realize it, The Muppets franchise, purchased by the Walt Disney Company in 2004, was moribund in the marketplace. In other words, The Muppets were old-hat, or perhaps more precisely, old sock puppets.

Disney "felt" it was time to reboot our fine felted friends.

For the "The Muppets" movie, the franchise was entrusted to Jason Segal, who co-wrote the screenplay and appears in the movie, and Nicholas Stoller.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

"The Twilight Series: Breaking Dawn, Part 1" is an entertaining movie that should please fans of the movie and not disappoint fans of the fictional book series by Stephenie Meyer.

One presumes they are one and the same.

As for the vampires and werewolves, we're not so sure.

The vampires don't come off as half-bad for being half-dead.

The werewolves, well, they are often in the dark. And, as they zoom through the woods faster than a Predator drone, you can barely pick them out.

The big three are what's important here, anyway.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

You already know the ending to "Margin Call," a fictionalized account of a fictional investment firm's role in the 2008 Wall Street financial meltdown.

We're still reeling from the fallout.

That part is not fiction.

Even so, as with motorists who can't resist looking at a vehicle crash scene along the highway, "Margin Call" should satisfy the rubbernecker in each of us.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The back story for "Tower Heist," a spiffy crime caper starring Ben Stiller and Eddie Murphy, is that the location of the tower was originally Trump Tower and the name of "The Donald"'s namesake Manhattan retail and residential Fifth Avenue high-rise was to have been included in the movie title.

Add to this a plotline echoing that of the Bernie Madoff investment scam whereby the wealthy and average investor lose life savings and you have the makings of movie that could have gone in one of two directions: playing it straight or playing it for laughs.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

"In Time" is a reasonably good science fiction thriller -- to a point.

That point is reached about three-quarters of the way through the movie when the screenwriter seems to have run out of ideas and plot devices.

In "In Time," Justin Timberlake plays Will, given the gift of time by a wealthy man. Will decides to exact revenge on a government system whereby consumer products are purchased literally "on time." One pays with minutes, hours, days, months and years taken off one's life on earth.

Monday, October 24, 2011

"The Big Year" is a humorous look at the competitive sport of bird-watching. The title refers to a contest to see the greatest number of bird species in one year.

Kenny Bostick (Owen Wilson) of Montclair, N.J., tries to top his annual tally of 732 bird sightings. Pitted against him is Brad Harris (Jack Black), an up-and-coming birder, and Stu Preissler (Steve Martin), a Vail, Colo., experienced bird watcher for whom his big year may be his last hurrah.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

"The Ides of March" is a compelling, tension-filled political thriller with a superb cast.

George Clooney directs and stars in the movie, which is as up-to-date as your newspaper, radio, television or web site headlines.

"Ides" is a deeply-cynical look at presidential politics. Clooney plays Mike Morris, a fictional Pennsylvania governor seeking the Democrat party presidential nomination.

Monday, October 10, 2011

You'll laugh.

You'll cry.

It's your choice.

Choice is an underlying theme in the movie, "50/50," where the title refers to the 50 percent chance of a cancer patient to survive.

The cancer patient, Adam (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), is a successful 27-year-old Seattle public radio station reporter, diagnosed with a rare form of spinal cancer.

His buddy, Kyle (Seth Rogen), who is always on the prowl, becomes his champion.