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Archive for the 'Movie Reviews' Category

Forgotten Friday Flick – “Off Beat”

Sometimes comedy isn’t biting and caustic but contains subtlety, romance and dancing cops – welcome to Forgotten Friday Flick!  Today we’re digging into the recesses of the underrated Judge Reinhold (he’s more than Beverly Hills Cop and Fast Time At Ridgemont High folks!) for a hidden gem that I actually had to rent from one of the last remaining video stores to re-watch.  (YouTube, iTunes, Amazon Video, Google Play Movies and TV and Vudu – it’s virtually MIA!)  It’s a sweet tale of a good-natured dude who gets in over his head when the boogie down bug bites him.  Bank robberies, impersonating an officer, library roller skating and going to your left all in a big stage attempt to not be…Off Beat!

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Encapsulated Movie Reviews – Eight New Indie Titles

Making up for last week’s small cinema windfall, I’m pounding the movie pavement and taking on a massive eight indie flicks for full film examination for the fans.  Via online screeners, sample home product and even shelling bucks out of pocket (I’m a film freak who puts his movie dissection money where his mouth is!), I’m upping the ante on lesser known features and there is something for everyone.  Snowy murder mysteries, jailhouse tales, stalker stories, shark infested sagas, time travel adventures, ice cream killer yarns, odd man out fables and head in the freezer flicks all get covered ala this week’s Encapsulated Movie Reviews.  Check out the critical skinny of Wind River, Shot Caller, Ingrid Goes West, Open Water 3: Cage Dive, Fate, The Ice Cream Truck, Lemon and Bluebeard below!

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Chemistry Helps The Forgettable And Bombastic ‘Hitman’s Bodyguard’ (Movie Review)

There’s a silly, little movie I admire called Money Talks. It’s the pre-Rush Hour action-comedy starring Chris Tucker and directed by Brett Ratner that hit theaters in August 1997. I’ve seen it many times because it plays on TBS a lot and it’s easy to have on in the background. I mention this because The Hitman’s Bodyguard feels like a film destined to play in a similar manner. It’s an action-comedy solely relying on the strength of the star chemistry between Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson that likely would need much attention to be paid to it by a viewer casually watching it from their home. I guess that also speaks to whether or not the big screen is the place for it.

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Forgotten Friday Flick – “Shakes The Clown” + Blu-ray Review!

Killing two comedy birds with one massive dissection stone, it’s time once again for a past picture and Blu-ray combo review all in the name of a hidden gem – welcome to Forgotten Friday Flick! Long before such fine works as World’s Greatest Dad (proudly on my top ten list that year!) and God Bless America, actor turned writer/director Bobcat Goldthwait debuted with this nasty nifty little ditty that exposed the underground arena of clown culture.  And thanks to the good people over at Mill Creek Entertainment who have just released a 25th Anniversary Edition of said film, we’re gonna cover both the Blu-ray and the film Forgotten Friday Flick style all in one cool comprehensive column.  So join friends Binky, Peppy, HoHo, Dink, Owen Cheese and various milkman scum as we head into the intoxicating world of…Shakes The Clown!   Continue reading ‘Forgotten Friday Flick – “Shakes The Clown” + Blu-ray Review!’

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‘Annabelle: Creation’ Conjures Up A Funhouse Horror Prequel (Movie Review)

There’s no real reason for a prequel to a bad modern horror film to be this much fun. Those were the exact thoughts I had last year with Ouija: Origin of Evil, the prequel to the truly awful Ouija. Now I’m in the same position with Annabelle: Creation, a prequel to The Conjuring spin-off Annabelle. That film was also dreadful, but apparently making a horror prequel to these bad movies was the solution. It’s either that or adding young Lulu Wilson to the cast, as this little girl was in both prequels and seems to be doing well with films involving supernatural torment.

 

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A ‘Glass Castle’ Of Emotion (Movie Review)

There is plenty to admire in The Glass Castle, an adaptation of the 2005 bestselling memoir by Jeanette Walls. The film is well-acted with a good handle on creating a look for a story focused on a family that spent years squatting in various homes. Sadly, the film ends up feeling too manufactured, rather than real when it comes time to show the effects of neglect as well as forgiveness.

 

 

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Annabelle: Creation Continues The Conjuring Universe w/ Familiar Scares (Movie Review)

Annabelle- CreationNow I want you to ask yourself the following question.  I really want you to think about this for a minute before answering too.  Let it seep in and stew within your brain.  Did we really need anther movie about this Conjuring spinoff, supernatural doll Annabelle?  Um…no!  The correct answer is absolutely not!  What the world needs is probably less of these kinds of horror flick cash grabs, but like it or not here we are.  I might as well get the introductions out of the way so we can get started here.  Ladies and gentlemen put your hands together in wild applause as we have a treat for you tonight with the 2017 supernatural horror film Annabelle: Creation. Continue reading ‘Annabelle: Creation Continues The Conjuring Universe w/ Familiar Scares (Movie Review)’

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Encapsulated Movie Reviews – Three New Indie Titles

Sorry film fans – a lesser amount of cinema covered this week as requests to see the very tasty looking Ingrid Goes West, saucy seeming The Only Boy Living in New York and questionable Open Water 3: Cage Dive went sadly unfulfilled.  But thankfully what was witnessed by yours truly turned out to be some very interesting indie fare, all of which managed to do so much with so little.  One boy’s obsession with fanged creatures, faith tested via bloody sword battles and alien tales of self discovery make up the three nifty notables in this weeks small but significant Encapsulated Movie Reviews.  Check out the critical opinions for The Transfiguration, Pilgrimage and The Answer below!

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Lots To Like In ‘Logan Lucky’ (Movie Review)

There was honestly never much of a chance I wasn’t going to enjoy another ensemble heist comedy from director Steven Soderbergh. Logan Lucky is the hillbilly cousin of Soderbergh’s Ocean film series (reminder: Ocean’s 12 is underrated), and it’s just as fun. And of course, only Soderbergh, who retired due to resentment towards the Hollywood studio system, would come back in a way that hardly suggests he’s not having a blast making movies with big name stars again. That said, Logan Lucky tries its best to show off just how unglamorous it is compared to the glitz of his fancier heist trilogy.

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Forgotten Friday Flick – “All Of Me”

Keeping the movie comedy coming we’re digging into more past picture hilarity in a bid to extend end of summer fun – welcome to Forgotten Friday Flick!  Everyone familiar with icons in the world of farcical films needs to introduction to laugh-out-loud leading man stylings of the sensational Steve Martin, but this week we’re highlighting one of his lesser-known gems that fans may have missed.  Seems an obnoxious and eccentric rich dame is looking to extend her life past death – and Martin becomes an unwitting participant.  (Isn’t he always?!)  Weird rituals, bewitching soul bowls, spoiled rich gals and one odd toilet flushing mystic provide the funny fuel for the fire in Carl Reiner’s hilarious romp…All Of Me!

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Encapsulated Movie Reviews – Seven New Indie Titles

Back from vacation and ready to do movie battle with a multitude of indie outings, it’s time to dissect some smaller film fare for you fans.  Taking on seven cinematic hopefuls this week with a wide range of genres and effectiveness.  (According to yours truly anyway!)  Romances during war time, horror houses with many sinister stories to tell, careful character studies, moms with moxie, gun-toting gals, shocking real-life racial events and a hundred year old werewolf legends make up the flicks covered in this edition of Encapsulated Movie Reviews.  Check out the critical skinny on the flicks The Last Face, Volumes of Blood: Horror Stories, Columbus, The Bad Mother, House on Rodeo Gulch, Detroit and Lycan below!

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‘The Dark Tower’ Falls (Movie Review)

It may not have been painful, but The Dark Tower is not an exciting launch to the cinematic world fans have been waiting for. After years of attempts to bring Stephen King’s novel series to the big screen, the result is a bland shrug of a film. Despite the efforts of four screenwriters to do the best they could in crafting a story that functions as an adaptation, cinematic sequel and feature-length TV pilot all in one, there are few merits to take away from something that had potential to be trippy fun. The Dark Tower may have wanted to be the epic fantasy western fans were counting on, but it’s more like a film that sped its way through the waste lands of familiar ideas and dull action.

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Comic-Con 2017: Charlize Theron & ‘Atomic Blonde’ (Movie Review)

I guess for the past couple of years now Entertainment Weekly has put on a Women Who Kick-Ass Panel at Comic-Con International.  This year’s panel featured a single woman, Charlize Theron, showcasing her most recent work Atomic Blonde, which dropped in theaters this week finally and her involvement in Fate of the Furious and one of my personal favorites Mad Max: Fury Road.  This year Entertainment Weekly senior writer Sara Vilkomerson was chosen to sit down with Theron in front of a captive Saturday Hall H crowd that was just rendered speechless by the previous panel, the Justice League.  While I wasn’t impressed with the lack of enthusiasm and knowledge  Vilkomerson employed in her interview of Theron, the latter woman wowed me a lot.  She’s beautiful, yes.  However, she’s also very humble and gracious, but make no mistake about it you don’t want to pick a fight with her.  The proud mother went into detail regarding the endless, grueling hours of training she endured for her role in Atomic Blonde as well as the injuries she was subjected to.  I mean good God she clenched her teeth so hard that she broke two of them.  I wouldn’t mess with a woman like that.  LOL. Continue reading ‘Comic-Con 2017: Charlize Theron & ‘Atomic Blonde’ (Movie Review)’

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Anger And Horror Abound In The Powerful ‘Detroit’ (Movie Review)

In a summer that’s already thrown us into war and pulled us out feeling optimistic enough with Dunkirk, Detroit has now come along to fuel a different, more complicated fire. Working as a war film, a hostage thriller, a horror film and a searing commentary all rolled into one, director Kathryn Bigelow isn’t here to hold hands and make false assurances. Detroit is an angry film that once again plays as a spectacular historical research project brought to cinematic life by Bigelow and screenwriter/producer Mark Boal. Made with the same confidence that found this filmmaking duo success with The Hurt Locker and Zero Dark Thirty, Detroit heads back in time to paint a startling picture of a pivotal moment in American history.

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Forgotten Friday Flick – “The Couch Trip”

With such heavy, deep and dark fare taking over recent past picture selections (go Cronenberg!), its time to lighten up the rest of the summer with a few lessor known comedies starting today – welcome to Forgotten Friday Flick!  This time out we’re jumping into the mix with a few movie oddballs for a farcical film that enlists the traditional mistaken identity plotline, but uses it to maximum comedic potential.  Seems a high profile psychiatrist and his practice is in need of a temporary replacement and who better than an alleged insane man to fill the void.  Brilliant wackos, cheating lawyers, hot doctors and jelly doughnuts without the jelly make up the merry mayhem of…The Couch Trip!

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Enjoyable Times In The Ensemble Human Comedy ‘Person To Person’ (Movie Review)

Here’s a breezy little indie movie that gets by on the abilities of its ensemble cast. Person to Person takes place over the course of one day in New York. It finds little, if any, connections between the characters we meet, but is entertaining nonetheless. The film has an unassuming style, some bits of character-based comedy and a level of soul that suggests writer/director Dustin Guy Defa could move on from here to something that stuns audiences in the future. There’s a level of assured filmmaking here, and it all starts with his friend Bene.

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‘Atomic Blonde’ Is A Cool Killer With Too Much Filler (Movie Review)

Here’s an action film that I couldn’t help but be underwhelmed by, given its potential. Atomic Blonde features Charlize Theron as a top-level spy in an action movie from David Leitch, co-director of John Wick. The film oozes with style (neon glow and an 80s new wave soundtrack) and features an array of solid actors in the supporting cast. There’s even one action sequence that will go down as one of the best action moments in recent years. Still, outside of a couple of action scenes, the film fails to engage in many ways.

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‘Brigsby Bear’ Is Full Of Quirky Heart (Movie Review)

How much do you love your favorite TV show? That’s just one of the questions asked in Brigsby Bear, a quirky comedy co-written by and starring Saturday Night Live’s Kyle Mooney. Here is a film that sets up a strange premise, twists our perception and finds a way to make it all feel oh so earnest. There is a very subdued sense of humor here that goes along with the familiar indie vibe, but a level of drama that plays well into this film’s story. There’s a nice journey to watch here, and it comes with the establishment of a children’s show that calls to mind nostalgic love for what 80s entertainment for adolescents had to offer.

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