Baby Driver Takes you There!

If you liked Ansel Elgort in the Divergent series and The Fault in Our Stars, you ain’t seen nothing yet. His role as Baby takes it all and gives a whole new side to this rising star. A music loaded film like you’ve never seen before – guns blasting to the rhythm of detonating music and soft undertones of emotion capsulize the audience. A quick rush, passionate strain, and seeing excellent performances by Kevin Spacey, Jamie Foxx, Jon Hamm, sexy Eliza González, and co-star Lily James as his love interest, Debora set the stage for an amazing show written and directed by Edgar Wright. And this ain’t his first rodeo!

If you’re looking for a film to excite those hidden feelings itching to get out, you need to see this movie – not once, not twice, but a few times. Despite some unrealistic sequences, the story sails on far above the flaws. This film earns a nine-star rating. After viewing it, make sure and post your thoughts! Can hardly wait to get our hands on the soundtrack. So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and see it!!

They Call Us Monsters – Who Creates the Dragons Brave Knights must Slay?

 

December 6, 2016, They Call Us Monsters, Movieclips Film Festivals & Indie Films

In a world where children grow up sleeping on the floor, numerous families crammed into a two-bedroom apartment, barely receiving enough sustenance to stay alive, these kids begin life with nothing but survival instincts. Fathers in prison. Mothers staying home to care for their children. The kids needing to find monies for their families. Their parents grew up in identical conditions before them and know nothing of survival in an “acceptable” way because they have NEVER been given instruction. We need to remember that what we know is due to years of instruction, they are not innate abilities we understand when we are born–we have been taught.

Watch the movie WITH your kids, pausing for periodic discussions, and remember that kids often have no sense of the future — only their immediate desires. Parents must teach them about consequences and the way the law works. It’s much more than “don’t get caught,” it’s about not doing it in the first place. There will be repercussions for every decision, and some of those consequences alter lives of other innocent people who happen to be at the right place at the wrong time.

Admittedly, as a writer myself, I was pleased to see the opportunity for these young men to create a substantial work from within the walls of a prison. Their ideas were phenomenal and their hard work toward something of context is unparalleled. At first, I appreciated the semi-counseling of the first meeting from the filmmaker. As the film progressed, I was disappointed to realize his purpose for tackling this project appeared not to do with the boys as much as granting himself credit. He began adding lines to situations he knows nothing about. It always irritates me to see writers embarking on unfamiliar subjects without bothering to research. He went there for a purpose and should have followed through the first time. Thank goodness, he backed off and allowed them free reign. The actors portraying the story? They were great. So were the camera crew and writers of the score.

One other frustrating item was the subtitles. When words are inaudible or in another language, for the audience to comprehend what is taking place, the story must be readable. Aside from these minor things, the idea behind allowing the public in to view the thinking of these young men was good. Still — what of the victims? And what can we do as a society to mold the future with the present so messed up?

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales – Sh, keep it to yourself!

Ain’t that the truth? Perhaps only dead men should be seeing this movie so they won’t tell anyone about it. None of the original players are involved from the score (film’s music) to the casting directors, 90% of the people holding this treasure of a film have folded. And the one-liners are real stinkers for the most part. Even the seasoned actors can’t arouse a giggle on some of them. That’s saying something, or is it?

The original crew is all but gone except for Jack Sparrow and his first mate, Gibbs. Sure, there are small appearances by Elizabeth Swann and William Turner, but the story’s plot is thin, predictable, and unless you see it in 3-D for the “Aw!” feeling, it could be a waste of over two hours of your valuable and irretrievable time. If it’s the sword fighting you’re interested in, watch the videos you already own.

The special fx aren’t too bad, but there are a few places throughout the film where they aren’t lined up correctly and it sort of jumps a bit. For example, the tower has a flame burning in it while the camera rotates around the opening. If you watch the turning flame, you’ll see. And there are little things throughout. The filmmakers appear to be skimping on the production. If you are brave enough to see it, please leave a comment displaying what you liked about it. But again, see it in 3-D. The vision of the antagonists’ hair which appears to be floating in water and waving throughout the production is pretty cool.

Then again, if you’re a teen and wanting a film to make-out to, this may be the “blockbuster” you’ve been waiting for. The main characters making their debut were Brenton Thwaites as Henry Turner, the offspring of Elizabeth and Will Turner, and Kaya Scodelario as Carina Smyth. Honestly, it’s unimaginable where they managed to get these two actors unless they have relatives in show business. Brenton was a bit stale, but he’ll come around to be a hit eventually. Kaya’s acting was nothing short of a kid reading a comic book. so she’s probably lucky she has the breasts to draw the audience’s attention.

I have to say I was a bit disappointed because I thought they would reveal the way Will Turner managed to get the gold coin around his neck from his father, as displayed in the first movie. Many times when there are several movies tied together, they’ll loop around and attach. Sadly, this series had none of that. They did, however, cast an interesting group for some of the scenes hoping to arouse curiosity if nothing else. They even managed to book Paul McCartney as a last-ditch savior. Let’s hope they can leave the blockbuster movies where they are without creating any more stink for them, eh?

On a rating of 10 possible stars, this film produces only a mediocre 5, which is extremely disappointing for any Jerry Bruckheimer movie.

Cast

 

Who Looks into a Black Mirror?

 

When I was a kid, and even through adulthood, I wasn’t really a fan of films depicting the bad guy chasing people around and killing them. To me, those were all the same movie with different background settings with minor adjustments of tools. What I loved were movies that made me think, “Could that really happen?” After all, if it could, what were the chances of it happening to me? For that, I was a huge fan of The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits. Sci-fi is for the mentally streaming folks, I guess.

Later on, although the concepts were still there, the effects of the old monochrome stories lost some of their pizzazz. Have no fear; Netflix is here to remedy that small discrepancy with a Britsh show entitled Black Mirror. The title alone makes a person consider what maniacal thinking is behind it.

Though the subject matter is more open and modernized with shows containing lesbians and young boys “entertaining themselves,” there are not graphic visuals. And the main focus isn’t sex, but if we’re going to talk modern, let’s face it, there’s going to be some mention of it. But the point of what you don’t know is made clearly. And just as at the end of the aforementioned movies where the viewer would lift his brows at the end and say, “Ah, I get it!” This show does that as well.

If you are someone who enjoys messing with your own brain with little mind games to keep you sharp, get that mental exercise! Here’s one of my favorites’ synopsis: “An American traveler short on cash signs up to test a revolutionary new gaming system, but soon can’t tell where the hoot game ends and reality begins.” It could happen!

Playtest

Aw, this little gopher is so adorable — what could possibly go wrong?

Written by Charles Brooker, a 46-year-old English satirist who definitely knows what he’s doing by sharing his twisted visions!

On a scale of 1 – 10 stars, this one gets an 8.

TH1RTEEN R3ASONS WHY

 

Having read the book for my own school studies in college, I only read it because of it being an assignment. I didn’t feel like wrapping myself up in an unstable way of thinking would benefit me. Everyone has pain, this is true. And the physical and mental changes of puberty certainly impact them tremendously, but is this work fanning the fire? By getting in the hands of the right student, certainly, the way any medication has the ability to do. But I have two kids, a 15-year-old boy and a 10-year-old girl. Do I think it’s acceptable for them to watch? Read on, because suicides are among us at all ages.

Now Netflix has created a one-season drama surrounding the novel and the results are like a hot iron across the face of America. Some are standing in protest, some embrace the openness of the subject, and others consider the work acceptance of their own suicidal behavior – actually prompting kids to consider the option.

What’s the difference between reading a book and seeing a movie? First, the content. The book is written from Hannah’s perspective, never allowing us to understand the other characters’ opinions or their experiences into why their minds perceive things in a specific way. The book doesn’t allow the clear insight for us to understand the other characters as emotional people – just “the others” who are to blame. But the book is also a lot less graphic in the sexual scenes, teen drinking, vicious behavior, and blood.

The movie, on the other hand, allows us into a close and personal view of why the other characters are doing what they do – the abuse they’re surviving, the secrets of their own lives they’re hiding, etc. Nobody’s perfect – truly, but that doesn’t mean people stop striving for the perfectionism their parents, teachers, siblings, and romantic interests anticipate. People expect a lot. And the more they get, the more they need. This is why perfectionism is never quite met.

Screen Shot 2017-05-16 at 10.24.56 AM

In our society, special fx disguise the reality of film, literature has a faster pace, even discussions at school at more exposed than what was acceptable years ago. Advertising suffocates us on the freeways, in magazines, on television and movie screens. Blemish-free and thin heroes adorn the scenery beckoning others to “get fit” and eat this way or that. “Copy me!” they seem to shout. And here they are again.

At the beginning of the article, I presented the question as to whether or not this material should be shared with our youth. This depends on the parents and the relationship with their children. My two kids? Yep, they saw it. However, eyes were shielded as Hannah held the razor to her wrist and a few other choice scenes where descriptions suffice. They didn’t need to see the act to understand what was happening – after all, the entire show centered around suicide. But, I would stop the show every once in a while and we would discuss some of the alternatives Hannah could have made at that point. For example, going to parties in high school where parents aren’t visible but underaged drinking is? A clear invitation to disaster.

Some of the scenes were clearly fictitious, such as a whiskey flask at a school dance being openly passed between students – doesn’t happen. And half the student body appears tattooed when you are to be 18 before a parlor legally sees you without parental consent. Other things were easily imagined, such as the graffiti on the bathroom walls at the school, and photos being taken and shared among peers. I’ve seen some of these things myself and often wondered what words the students must hear throughout the day before witnessing it permanently on a wall or on a screen. And how much of the crap is hearsay or completely made up by some girl who wasn’t chosen as a prom date, or a guy who was one-upped by another? It happens.

If you plan on having your child watch this show, please be responsible enough to watch it and discuss what is happening. If you decide not to watch it, make sure your child has made the same decision. If not, chances are they’ll watch it without you.

By the way, producer Selena Gomez states we should all be prepared for the next season. I suppose it stirred up enough controversy, producers have decided to wring it out for what it’s worth! Seems like they took a pseudo positive spin and took off while it’s hot. While some argue the sex, violence, drinking and tattoos boasts a “reality check” for kids, others may disagree. Then again, we may need to stop and ask where our focus is.

 Core Cast
Dylan Minnette Dylan Minnette
 Clay Jensen (13 episodes, 2017)
Katherine Langford Katherine Langford
 Hannah Baker (13 episodes, 2017)
Christian Navarro Christian Navarro
 Tony Padilla (13 episodes, 2017)
Alisha Boe Alisha Boe
 Jessica Davis (13 episodes, 2017)
Brandon Flynn Brandon Flynn
 Justin Foley (13 episodes, 2017)
Justin Prentice Justin Prentice
 Bryce Walker (13 episodes, 2017)
Miles Heizer Miles Heizer
 Alex Standall (13 episodes, 2017)
Ross Butler Ross Butler
 Zach Dempsey (13 episodes, 2017)
Devin Druid Devin Druid
 Tyler Down (13 episodes, 2017)
Amy Hargreaves Amy Hargreaves
 Lainie Jensen (13 episodes, 2017)
Derek Luke Derek Luke
 Kevin Porter (13 episodes, 2017)
Kate Walsh Kate Walsh
 Olivia Baker (13 episodes, 2017)

 

 

 

 

Logan’s Alcoholism Slows his Mentality

Let’s make this clear. The movie is anything but slow, as the action seldom with this all-star cast refuses to let the average movie-goer use the restroom, much less get a drink, without knowing ahead of time they’re making a choice of missing something grand. (Be sure and empty your bladder before you get comfy.) Hugh Jackman has made Wolverine synonymous with himself, as always, in the latest X-men film. Someday, when he’s old and gray, finding a replacement will prove next to impossible. Until then, women are as pleased as ever to see his wide and expanding chest stretched across an IMAX screen whenever possible. Seems the men are just as impressed for different reasons, but everyone agrees he’s a hell of an actor. Jackman doesn’t let anyone down here. However, alcoholic Wolverine appears to have a mental disconnect and requires Xavier to club him over the head in revealing his secret.

Patrick Stewart is his usual sardonic personality but seems a bit off in this film as he introduces Logan to a child born of Wolverine’s loins several times. Of course, shortly after, he says “adios” to the cast. But no matter how many times Xavier tells his friend, Logan just doesn’t seem to understand. Perhaps Logan feels as if the child was born from a bender and doesn’t want to face his alcoholism. I suppose this isn’t that uncommon.

When Logan realizes Laura (Dafne Keen), is his own child, he appears pleased that she’s as independent as she is — like her hairy father and plots to save her life. Although the filmmakers discovered Dafne in the UK after scouring the planet for the perfect actress, the eleven-year-old does an amazing job as a Latin speaking immigrant. The first half of the film, she manages to get her points across without uttering a single word. She’s born for film acting with her acrobat and gymnastic skills, as well as being bilingual, and having an expressive face.

Comedian and many-coat-wearing talent Stephen Merchant is another name that isn’t as big as it deserves to be — yet, anyway. His versatile and charismatic charm is finally getting the attention it deserves as he plays Caliban, a bug-eyed, pale-faced sidekick to the X-men. Though he’s suffered many times before, his character suffers greatly in this role. Let’s just say he’s far from getting the golden tan of George Hamilton.

If you’re wanting to get your money’s worth, this movie is a terrific way to escape the little ones for an adult night out. It’s rated R, so count on a lot of blood and slicing as Wolverine and his new genetic offspring kick some egotistical ass. The stunts of bodies spiraling in the air leave a bit to be desired, but the plot and other effects graciously camouflage the awkward rotations.

This show gets 4 out of 5 stars in our book of movie ratings.

 

Trolling for a Good Time? Don’t Miss Out

Ventured out on this beautiful day and grabbed a totally uplifting film that’s great for the family. I laughed so loud my son told me to quit embarrassing him. But if you can’t laugh aloud, what’s the point, right?

Anna Kendrick playing Poppy and Justin Timberlake as Branch are a wonderful chiming of maniacal talent in this fantastic show of never leaving friends behind and sticking to the plan no matter what. Of course, Zooey Deschanel plays Bridget, an outcast Bergen who needs a great plan to overcome her odds in winning the heart of the king, teams up with the two trolls. Together, they must find a way to overcome the chef, played by Christine Baranski, who was marvelous. Russell Brand is back in United States showbiz with the role of deceitful troll Creek. And then, of course, we have the incredible voice talents of Gwen Stefani.

With plentiful laughs and wonderful singing, I say you should leave feeling pretty happy.

The Secret Life of Pets is Revealed

Universal Studio did some amazing things with this film’s animation. Some of the attitudes and activities these pets do can easily be imagined as happening in one of the homes of the writers. Hopefully not the dachshund with the mixer, but to each his own.

If your little ones love pets as much as my 9-year-old date, the plot doesn’t matter much. In this case, that’s a good thing. Momma’s stockings have a lot more to hide than the happenings of this show. That hardly seems to matter because, throughout the entire show, people were cracking up. We got to see animals wiggling their derrieres at us throughout the show and urinating. I guess nowadays that’s funny to see as if it hasn’t been happening all along, but the kids seemed to enjoy it.

Speaking of letting a little liquid loose, if you are a big laugher who drinks a lot of soda, make sure to use the facilities before entering if you’re wearing drawstring pants. The consequences can be devastating if the strings tangle into a knot. Not that this happened, but I will no longer wear pull string pants to a theater.

The kids seemed to enjoy this, as did the guffaws of a few adults. However, the little ones were so hammered with advertising they were almost finished before the actual movie started. It’s best when you have little tykes if you have reserved seating, to wait about 5 minutes after starting time to prevent the wiggles from breaking out. A few started getting restless and even crying a bit more than halfway through. Thank goodness their parents removed them politely from the theater. Also, make sure to hand around partially through the credits. One of the cutest parts of the movie is seeing the pups dressed in costumes.

The graphics were excellent, the voices were great, but the plot was thin. Again, tiny kids loved it for a little while, but seeing as how most of them can’t type, you’ll have an adult’s opinion to work with today.

On the scale rating this movie, it deserves no less than a 6.5. Then again, if you’ve seen it, leave us your feedback on what you thought of the show.

Finding Dory is Excruciatingly Enjoyable

We all remember little Nemo who barely escaped the nest as blue collar escargot, but the friends he made along the way have their own stories, too. Dory was a favorite with her happy-go-lucky attitude that caused everyone to smile. This film is a little different because viewing the story from her point of view sheds a new and saddening light on the subject. That isn’t to say the ending doesn’t do the plot just good. It certainly does.

Ellen DeGeneres breathes life into this blue tang fish without giving it mouth-to-mouth and has the audience laughing and pondering at the same time. This film is both entertaining and educational at the same time, which is great for kids to secretly learn while having fun. Filled with humor, anecdotes, and lessons about taking one step at a time, or is it swimming one swoosh at a time? Anyway, the importance of not giving up.

Of course, she meets all types of ocean life throughout her journey, but the friends she makes now help her to find her long lost friend of a lifetime, Nemo. This is a must-see for parents taking their kids for a night of family fun, or a single parent to bond with a child. And, of course, as with all Disney movies of late, your job is to seek which character joyously exclaims, “This is amazing!”

This film easily ranks up there with Finding Nemo, which is rare for a second film to do so well. Pixar and Disney have managed to deliver a powerful blow yet again with this one.

We rate this a strong 8 out of 10 stars and encourage you to at least see it if not buy it.

If you dare to take a peek, make sure and post your own review alongside this one! People deserve to hear your opinion, right?

 

Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation

The original Mission Impossible began in 1966, if you can believe the same year as Star Trek and also the year I was conceived and born. Three great things started 49 years ago that still are alive and kicking hard today!  The television series was effective enough that I remember watching it in our green shag-carpet living room with orange and green floral furniture, on the square box we called the boob-tube. Nope, not tube tops, that came much later. But here’s a taste of the montage as I knew it.

Pretty amazing, right? Even as nail-biting as watching Peter Graves, Leonard Nimoy, Greg Morris, and hottie Peter Lupus (who still lifts weights in his 70’s and was one of the first big names to do a frontal nude photo for Playgirl Magazine).

So here we are today, smarter than ever, checking out another man of the decade Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt in the modernized Mission Impossible, breathing the air of life back into the film from 1996 until now with Rogue Nation. His versatility and ability to pull off any character he sets his mind to has done him justice ever since his big debut of Risky Business, the tight-bunned teen dancing a jig in his undies and socks. Nevertheless, he does Ethan Hunt good by keeping his rugged, sexy self working out regularly. This movie was incredible, and now we just need to wait for the next one. Is there going to be another one? Only if he lives to see another day. Tom does his own stunts!

On the scale of 1 – 10, this one gets a 9! Now leave me alone, I’ve got to watch it again.