Monday, August 31, 2015

Straight Outta Compton - Review

   As someone who was born after many of the events depicted occurred, Straight Outta Compton served as a sort of history lesson tied in with the hip-hop revolution that went on during the time. While I’ve heard the music and know who these individuals are, specifically Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, I still had about as much knowledge about the Compton based hip-hop group as I did about nuclear physics. But even with that lack of information going in, I was able to enjoy these true-life characters based on the superb acting and wonderful direction of F. Gary Gray.

No Escape - Review

   Advertised as a high paced international thriller, No Escape hardly delivers on the good trailers it put out. In retrospect, the film isn’t even an international thriller; it’s a zombie film. Not the traditional zombies of sorts, but still nameless, faceless, and ruthless killers who constantly chase our film’s protagonists to no end.  No Escape is quite a simple piece of film and while it features some good performances, just can’t get passed the clich├ęd, and slightly racist, story.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Z for Zachariah - Review

   The post-apocalyptic film is slowly becoming a film genre in it’s own right. The flood, ironically, continues to flow, but this time in a different form. While other films will bring huge disasters or hoards of zombies running wildly around, Z for Zachariah instead focuses on it’s characters and how they adapt and behave at the end of the world. The result is a delicately calibrated and deliberately un-sensational triangle drama.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Cop Car - Review

    Cop Car is an independent film featured in very few theaters, but is one of the new films, luckily for me, to be almost immediately released in digital formats. The film is relatively simple one featuring a small cast with two children at the center of it all.  It presents itself through every turn with a sense of wickedness and builds tension ever so slightly to craft a taut thriller.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Sinister 2 - Review

   Sinister 2 is the latest outing from the top horror production studio in the business today, Blumhouse. The film is the sequel to the 2012 hit Sinister (REVIEW) and with any luck was hoping to recapture some of what Scott Derrickson and Ethan Hawke did so well with the small little horror originally. Unfortunately, as is the case with most sequels in this genre, the follow-up plays too closely to original without realizing what made the first film work.

American Ultra - Review

   The lesser-known secret operative spy film of the tail end of summer movie season comes in the form of the stoner comedy, American Ultra.  While not the big budget extravaganza that other spy/secret agent films of 2015, American Ultra is just as entertaining though does suffer from some issues. The film is a lightweight but certainly likeable story about a slacker who is suddenly thrown for a loop when he becomes basically Jason Bourne with an apt to get high whenever possible.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Sinister (2012) - Review

   As August is over halfway over, the true blockbusters are finished, at least for the time being. But there will be a release of yet another sequel, Sinister 2, as summer winds down into the lighter months of fall. Before the film is released however, I felt the need to revisit it’s predecessor, the horror film Sinister.

Friday, August 14, 2015

The Man from U.N.C.L.E. - Review

   The year 2015 may be many things, but one thing is certain; it is the year of the spy. With two pretty fantastic spy films already released, Kingsman: The Secret Service and Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (Review), and two more on the way, Spectre and Bridge of Spies, The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is unofficially the midway mark for espionage this year.  The 60s TV show of the same name is revived to produce a more lighthearted, cold war era film and is nothing if not enjoyable, despite some flaws.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Southpaw - Review

   After way too long, I was finally able to see one of my more anticipated films of 2015, Southpaw. Despite the notion that boxing is a dying sport, Hollywood continues to produce boxing movies on a pretty regular basis. And why not? The setting is perfect for an underdog story that everyone can get on board with. Southpaw doesn’t differ much from this rise-fall-rise again template, but manages to bring just enough to make it a solid film.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

The Gift - Review

   After a summer filled with superheroes, dinosaurs, and disrespected video game characters, it was nice to slow things down a bit with the film known as The Gift. A more sophisticated product from Blumhouse Productions, The Gift is a home invasion film with a slight twist that is far from routine, creating an intense psychological thriller.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Fantastic Four (2015) - Review

   Earlier in the week I reviewed two less than average films that attempted to bring the superhuman team, the Fantastic Four, to the big screen. The third attempt titled Fantastic Four (or Fant4stic as it’s referred to in all the marketing) is the latest in a series of disappointing films about Marvel’s first family. Expectations for the movie were at an all time low, and the film still managed to fall flat and disappoint in every imaginable way.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007) - Review

   The second part of the Fantastic Four franchise, Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer, is a slight improvement over the first film, Fantastic Four (REVIEW), though not by much. It trades the cartoony aspects for a slightly darker tone, but still doesn’t manage to become a good film along the way. There are some redeeming qualities, mainly to do with the titular character, the Silver Surfer himself.

Pixels - Review

   Well I finally got the energy and motivation to see Adam Sandler’s newest endeavor into screens across the country with Pixels. The longtime comedian has had a lot of low quality and flat out terrible films over the past few years. Now Pixels is by no means good, but lowered expectations certainly make it watchable.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Fantastic Four (2005) - Review

   With the release of Fox’s third attempt to get the Fantastic Four right directly around the corner, August 7th to be exact, I felt it was only necessary to go back and revisit the first two. The first part of which is 2005’s Fantastic Four.