Dave’s one-line movie reviews XVI

June 4, 2015 at 7:10 pm | Posted in movie reviews, Reviews | Leave a comment
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Wow, it’s been a long time since I’ve written any movie reviews.  I guess with all the important news about Bruce Jenner and Deflategate, I’ve been distracted from my obligation to keep my readers entertained.  And now with a Presidential election only 17 months away, the media will be driving me nuts, vying for my attention.  Luckily, I keep a list of everything I watch that’s appropriate for this column, so without further delay, here’s a list of what my eyeballs have been pinned to.

Ex Machina” was really good, and had enough plot twists to keep anyone engaged.  Well, I figured it out about halfway through, but then again, I am a film critic.  (yeah – right!)  Half naked transparent robot ladies are cool to look at too.  Think of this as 2001: a Space Odyssey meets Cherry 2000.

American Sniper” is a gritty thriller about what it’s like to be an Army ranger sniper.  Having never been a sniper, I have no idea how realistic the story is, but it was definitely a good movie.  Jodi sat through it without even complaining, and I didn’t have to watch a chick-flick in repayment, although I’d hardly call this a “date movie.”  Clint Eastwood was fun to watch as an actor, but as a Director he continues to turn out entertaining and thought provoking movies.  And that’s all I’ve got to say about that.

Whiplash”  Here the story – J.K. Simmons, who doesn’t seem to have a real first name, is a very intense band teacher at some fancy school for gifted student musicians.  I never thought I’d want to watch a 90 minute film about drums.  Now that I’ve seen it, I still don’t.  Now, a naked lady on the oboe, that’s for me.

Stonehurst Asylum” with Ben Kingsley, Michael Caine and Kate Beckinsdale, was a Netflix ditty a few months ago.  With a cast like this and the set design and costumes, this movie must have cost a bundle to produce, yet I believe it went straight to Netflix.  Then again, who would pay $14.00 to watch a bunch of dull actors whine away for two hours?

“Lee Daniels The Butler” was a great film, but I don’t know why Director Lee Daniels had to put his name in front of the title.  I mean, if everyone did that, titles would become so long that it would make it impossible to get movie memorabilia key chains at Universal Theme park.  Forrest Whitaker gave a great performance and Oprah Winfrey doesn’t get beat up in this film.

Speaking of Oprah Winfrey, “Selma” is a fantastic movie that you must see.  Reprising her role from “The Color Purple,” Oprah again gets beat up.   “Selma” was one of the best movies I’ve seen this year, although I must admit that it makes me a little bit ashamed to be Caucasian.

Bad Words” is Jason Bateman’s directorial debut, and I think he plays a great straight man in Arrested Development.  However, Bad Words was a snoozer for me.  I couldn’t make it through the entire film, I tried for three nights, and I like foul mouthed cursing movies.  There are definitely a bunch of belly laughs in there, it just couldn’t hold my interest.  But then again, maybe I couldn’t stay awake because of my drinking problem so you might like it better.

3 Days to Kill” has Kevin Costner portraying Liam Neeson.  You know, an old grey guy running around with a gun killing everyone in sight.  (I don’t know if Costner follows that up with any public statements condemning gun violence.)  It was an okay action movie, some kind of plot about secret cancer cures or something like that.  Think of “Jack Ryan Shadow Recruit” with Amber Heard instead of Keira Knightly.

“Avengers – Age of Ultron – a brian williams review.”  Welcome to this week’s review of a movie I haven’t seen.  In “…Ultron,” a bunch of old guys in Spandex blow stuff up and save the world.  A few funny lines, lots of fights and explosions, and Scarlett Johansson looking pretty.  There’s some character named the Masked Asgardian, and as I haven’t seen the movie, I don’t know what that means, but I don’t want him standing behind me on the line at the snack stand.

I know that in my last column I promised a series of reviews about Reality television, but I’ve been so busy watching test patterns on the high channels that I haven’t had a chance.  Patience grasshopper – patience.

As always, please share this column with your friends, family and the guys in the cells around yours.

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Dave’s one-line movie reviews XV

February 8, 2015 at 1:36 pm | Posted in movie reviews, Numbskull observations, Reviews | Leave a comment
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As far as trips to the cinema, it’s been a light month, so to prevent my loyal followers (both of you) from having to go another month without hearing from me, I hit Netflix and Cable TV to find some fodder for my frivolous comments.  Then it occurred to me, do I really have to watch a movie to review it?  So, I’ve decided to use the branding “a brian williams review” to identify reviews of films I haven’t seen.

Paddington – a brian williams review.”  In this amazingly original concept, a talking stuffed animal lives with a family and gets into trouble.  Sort of a PG rated version of “Ted” where they say “darn” instead of “f*ck off.”

Making the rounds on cable television is “The Legend of Hercules,”  which must be the worst Hercules movie ever made.  Herc is played by a surfer dude on steroids, there are no monsters, bad stutter motion fighting effects, and no sex.  I mean, come on, Hercules is running around in a diaper and all the women are wrapped up like they were going to a church social.  At the end, Hercules gets an electric sword and good triumphs over evil.  Yeah, like that was really a spoiler.

The Other Woman” is a snorefest about a sleezy husband cheating on his mistress with a younger woman.  Besides a couple of shots of Kate Upton spilling out of her bikini, there is nothing worth watching.  Now that I think about it, it’s not worth watching the movie when you can find the Kate Upton bikini scene on YouTube.

Two Guns” benefits from the presence of Denzel Washington, but they won’t be putting this film in the American FIlm Institute Hall of Fame anytime soon.  Mark Wahlberg plays the same character as he did in “Ted” in this harmless shoot-em-up action film.  The credits say no chickens were harmed in the making of this movie, but it certainly looked real.

It seems I can’t get through a weekend without being coerced into watching a chick flick.  Last weekend it was “Begin Again.”  There’s these two people, they fall in love, then it cools down.  And I’m subjected to two hours of Keira Knightly singing folk music.  Where’s that bottle of Absolute?

The Miracle Worker” was on TCM Classics the same time as “Housewives of Beverly Hills.”  Luckily I DVR’d Miracle Worker so I didn’t have to miss either.  Although lacking in explosions, nudity, chase scenes, zombies or gun battles, Miracle Worker is a great drama that should be on everyone’s “must see” list.  Mrs. Robinson stars as a partially blind teacher come to help a deaf, blind mute who grows up into Catherine Margaret Rowan Lane.

Changing the channel after catching a rerun of the Wrath of Khan reboot,  Star Trek Into Darkness, who did I find but Captain Kirk/Chris Pine, this time staring in “Jack Ryan Shadow Recruit.”  There’s this Russian bad guy who wants to take down the American economy and Keira Knightly is back on my TV and there’s a bunch of shooting and explosions and car chases and Kevin Costner in his 83rd movie this the year as a benign but crusty this that or the other thing.

The Bag Man” is a straight to Netflix movie with John Cusack as a lovable psychotic killer and Amber Heard as a lovable prostitute with a heart of gold.  She walks around in a whore costume, he kills all the other actors, then Robert DeNiro shows up as a lovable murder-mentor and everybody kills everybody.  It’s the kind of movie you can put on pause while you go to CVS for some Advil and not feel like you’re missing out on the cinematic experience.

The Judge” with Robert Downy Jr and Robert Duvall is by far the gem of this bunch.  I’m not going to make any snide remarks for this review, and I’m going to violate my prime directive by suggesting if you haven’t seen it, you should.

I’m really excited about my next one-line movie reviews column, which I am actually starting to work on advance.  It will be a review of Reality television shows.  If you are looking for inane comments about inane entertainment, follow this blog so you will know the moment I click on the “Publish” button.  Until then, thank you for reading, and please feel free to share my column with your friends, followers and the other patients in your support group.

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January 6, 2015 at 6:20 pm | Posted in movie reviews, Reviews | 1 Comment
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Here we are in 2015.  The past week has been great, I’ve enjoyed a “stay-cation,” which means hanging around the house, doing some chores, sleeping late, eating out and catching up on a lot of movies on TV and Netflix.  Unfortunately, I haven’t been to the cinema since Christmas, but plan to make several visits in the coming weeks which I will share with you avid readers.  But there’s still lots of movies to talk about, so in no particular order, here we go:

her”  The lower case was their idea.  Is this an allegorical tale about current society’s growing addiction to electronic communication at the expense of human interaction?   Or is it a cleverly disguised advertisement for Apple computer products?  Do you really care? A better use of your time would be to shove a pencil into your eye socket and go to the emergency room seeking human interaction from an internist.

Nebraska” is  like that quirky Saturday Night Live sketch that starts at 12:45 AM, only Nebraska is funny and worth watching.  My only concern is I’m afraid all mid-westerner’s are going to think that anyone who lives on the east coast thinks this is what mid-westerner’s are like.

We’re the Millers” is a crude comedy that delivers a few laughs, and not one, not two, but three scenes of Jennifer Aniston, looking darn good at 45, dancing a striptease in her underwear.   Jason Sudeikis plays the same part he usually does and Ed Helms hams it up well, this time with all his teeth.

Walk of Shame” is another crude comedy that delivers a few laughs, but this time we have Elizabeth Banks in a tight dress, looking darn good at 40 years old.  As long as Hollywood has beautiful skinny actresses, I guess we’ll be getting a lot of T&A comedies.  Perhaps some smart movie exec is working on “The Millers Walk of Shame” for next year.

Labor Day.”  Long story about escaped convict James Brolin teaching a young boy how to make peach pies while Kate Winslet gets tied to a chair.  The boy grows up and turns into Tobey Maguire and starts a bakery.  Sorry – I just gave the plot away.  Well, the “entertainment” is in the getting there.

Eternal Spotlight of the Sunshine Mind.”  A highly rated movie by Charles Kaufman, who prefers abstraction to storytelling.  Great cast, enjoyable story.  I’m not sure if it’s a bad Woody Allen movie watched while taking good acid, or a good Woody Allen movie watched taking bad acid.

“The Last Exorcism 2“.  Just because I haven’t seen the film, does that mean I shouldn’t write a review?  All I can ask is how can you make a sequel to something that was called “The Last….”

Thank You for Smoking” is one of the best films of the past decade.  I guess the actors all got paid scale, because they’re all well known talent but the budget was only 6.5 Million.  They obviously spent the money on story, because they got it right.  I’d put this movie in the same category as 1976’s “Network,” and if you want to call yourself a film-goer, you should make sure you’ve seen both.

Draft Day” was a fun movie, even though the visual effects were really cheesy.  While not a fan of football movies, I enjoyed the story about the wheeling and dealings behind the scenes.  This is sort of a football version of “Moneyball,”  and Kevin Costner shows he’s still got it.

Talking about Kevin Costner, “JFK” is making the rounds on cable television.  The plot is entertaining but the movie is really a three hour Oliver Stone tirade against the Warren Commission.  If you want a good movie, by all means watch it, but if you’re interested in JFK assassination conspiracies, there are a lot of well researched books out there that will give far more balanced information.

The Godfather“, “Godfather 2” and “Godfather 3” are also making the rounds on cable television.  The original “Godfather” is a classic crime thriller and an engaging character study of the effects of power on a character.  For all you youngsters out there, “Godfather” is one of the pioneer flicks for gunshot wound special effects.  “Godfather 2” is often described by critics as being better than “Godfather 1.”  Without judgement, I’ll say they’re both worth watching.  “Godfather 3?”   Hmmm, I don’t want to say anything bad, the Corleone’s might be reading.

Thanks for reading and please share my blog with your friends, therapists and probation officers.

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