Monday, February 16, 2009


Title: Fanboys
Directed by: Kyle Newman
Starring: Sam Huntington, Christopher Marquette, Dan Fogler, Jay Baruchel, Kristen Bell
Genres: Action/Adventure, Comedy, Crime, Drama
Running Time: 1 hour.30 minutes
Release Date: February 6th, 2009
MPAA Rating: PG-13

Review: Two points that needs to be made up front:
  1. If you have no love for Star Wars, I doubt you will find this movie very entertaining, and you should probably skip it.
  2. Furthermore, if you did not enjoy any of the following films, then the humor in this one might not be your thing: Super Bad, Pineapple Express, Knocked Up.
I'm just letting you know, because I personally HATE bad comedies, and I realize that comedy is one of the most subjective thing in films, so, some information of the flavor of funnies in [comedy you might see] is really helpful.
Now, to the actual review:
I, who have a moderate love for Star Wars, absolutely loved this film! It is hilarious! And I loved it even more because it had my wonderful Hubby laughing out loud in the half-full theater. Jay Baruchel, a favorite from Knocked Up & Tropic Thunder, is fabulous, but so is the rest of the cast. If you saw some of the other films mentioned above, you will definitely recognize several familiar faces. And don't forget to keep your eyes peeled for the cameo by Carrie Fisher.
I would definitely say see this one, but look above for points 1, and 2, to evaluate humor-compatibility first.

Grade: 8.5

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The International

Title: The International
Directed by: Tom Tykwer
Starring: Clive Own, Naomi Watts, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Ulrich Thomsen, Brian O Byrne
Genres: Action, Adventure, Drama and Thriller
Running Time: 1 hour.58 minutes
Release Date: February 13th, 2009
MPAA Rating: R

Review: 'The International' is a popcorn action/thriller which is predictable but fairly entertaining. In other words; typical blockbuster fair with a financial-flavored conspiracy twist. It does create some excitement and tension, but fails to hold on to it throughout the movie. Would have been much improved by some tighter editing shaving off 15-20 minutes. Suitable for DVD consumption.

Grade: 6

Friday, February 13, 2009

Revolutionary Road

Title: Revolutionary Road
Directed by: Sam Mendes
Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Kathy Bates, David Harbour, Michael Shannon
Genres: Drama, and Adaptation
Running Time: 1 hour.59 minutes
Release Date: December 26th, 2008
MPAA Rating: R

I've wanted to see this film since I first heard of it; Sam Mendes with a fantastic cast and a great story, it just had to be a great film! But when December rolled around, and 'Revolutionary Road' was finally released, I held off. I've been holding off for quite some time now. The main reason: I heard it was dark, some even say too dark. And quite frankly, I have not felt up for a depressing film with everything going on with Hubby's illness in the last 5 months. We've been keeping the entertainment light and laugh-y lately, with no need to add any fictional devastation to the mix. However, after reading rave review after rave review, praising the performance of the cast, I felt like I was missing out.
And 'Revolutionary Road' really is a great movie. Yes, it is dark, devastating, and saturated with desperation, but it truly is a great film, and definitely worth seeing. I would not have wanted to miss it. I would highly recommend this film as one of the "Must See" films of 2008. But do take heed; it is not light and laugh-y popcorn entertainment, even though it is sometimes funny.

Grade: 7.5

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Rachel Getting Married

Title: Rachel Getting Married
Directed by: Johathan Demme
Starring: Anne Hathaway, Debra Winger, Bill Irwin, Tunde Adebimpe, Anna Deavere Smith
Genres: Drama
Running Time: 1 hour.51 minutes
Release Date: October 3rd, 2008 (limited)
MPAA Rating: R

Review: 'Rachel Getting Married' has been out for quite a while, but I missed it when it was new. I recently heard a lot of good things about Anne Hathaway's performance in this movie, which spurred me to see it. It is quite different from everything else I've seen her in, and yeah, she did a good job.
The whole film is shot in a way that made me feel I was watching a poorly edited, much too long, awkward home video from the absurd wedding of some random (and severely dysfunctional) strangers. It felt very real, uncomfortably so. It is a close-up, too real to not be real, film of about a wide range of family-related issues. It is so close-up you can see every pore. And that fact alone made me cringe and squirm in my seat. Easily, not a film for everyone, and not something you would see to be entertained.

Grade: 5

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Reader

Title: The Reader
Directed by: Stephen Daldry
Starring: Kate Winslet, Ralph Fiennes, Karoline Herfurth, Hannah Herzsprung, David Kross
Genres: Drama, Romance, and Adaptation
Running Time: 2 hour.2 minutes
Release Date: December 12th, 2008 (limited)
MPAA Rating: R

Review: 'The Reader' is long, a bit slow, but that does not take away from a film that is also original, sad, heartbreaking and telling a captivating story that is not black or white, but all shades of gray. Kate Winslet is fantastic in her role as Hannah Schmitz, and the film is definitely worth seeing, but wait for the DVD, and see it at home. That is about all I will say, I wouldn't want to spoil anything. That, and heads up for the nudity.

Grade: 7.5

Sunday, February 8, 2009

He's Just Not That Into You

Title: He's Just Not That Into You
Directed by: Ken Kvapis
Starring: Jennifer Aniston, Scarlett Johansson, Jennifer Connelly, Kevin Connolly, Bradley Cooper, Justin Long, Ginnifer Goodwin, Drew Barrymore, Ben Affleck
Genres: Comedy, Adaptation
Running Time: 2 hour.9 minutes
Release Date: February 6th, 2009 (wide)
MPAA Rating: PG-13

Review: Oh my! I don't even know where to begin with this one...
Originally, there were two reasons that I wanted to see the year's first, big chick-flick;
  1. The cast - It seems everyone is in this movie, and I was really curious to see what this group of people could come up with. Judging by their past work, it should be funny, cute, and maybe even great. And, since I don't watch a lot of chick-flicks I figured this one might be a good one for me, that I might actually enjoy.
  2. The book - I've read it, and I honestly thought it would make a great adaptation to film.
Sounds like the recipe for the perfect chick-flick, right? Wrong. This film disguises itself as a chick-flick, but really, all it manages to do is portray women as completely ridiculous, clingy, delusional creatures. I sat through this [long] movie, in a theater packed with people, and every time I cringed with embarrassment for the behavior of these characters, [what seemed like] every other female in the room squealed with delight from completely recognizing themselves in those very same characters. I lost count of how many "OH MY GOD! That is SO me!"-s I heard exclaimed in there. I seriously do not know who the fuck these women are? But I guess that is a whole other post.
Secondly, with all the talk about "staying true to the book", they sure failed on that front. To appease the masses, they have attached a generic Hollywood "happy ending" to this film, that is just ridiculous in context. But I guess they did need to lie a bit to bend it to the target audiences' expectations. So, really, it ends up being just another RomCom, with a few funny lines about dating in the era of online profiles, instant message, and smart phones.
However, even though I would not straight-up recommend this film, I'm not saying don't see it. It all depends on what kind of chick you are; If you are on of those girly-girls that planned their wedding since the age of 3, who's been dissecting boy-relations with your girlfriends since kindergarten, and who after each new date spends hours waiting by the phone for him to call, you might like 'He's Just Not That In To You'. If you are not; prepare to spend 2 hours completely horrified and/or embarrassed.

Grade: 4.5

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The Secret Life of Bees

Title: The Secret Lives of Bees
Directed by: Gina Prince-Bythewood
Starring: Queen Latifah, Dakota Fanning, Jennifer Hudson, Sophi Okonedo, Alicia Keys
Genres: Drama, and Adaptation
Running Time: 1 hour.50 minutes
Release Date: October 17th, 2008 (limited)
MPAA Rating: PG-13

Review: 'The Secret Life of Bees' came out quite a while ago, all the way back in mid-October. I meant to see it back then, but i did not get around to until yesterday. For those of you who've already seen it months ago, this review will be completely useless. But kudos to you for not missing out on a great film, and beating me to seeing it! And, in case you forgot all about this one, the DVD (released yesterday) would make a nice gift for a female in your life . And that is something, right(so maybe not completely useless...) ?
But if there is anyone still out there, who missed this film when it was new, then this review is for you.

Since October, I had sort of forgotten what 'The Secret Life of Bees' was all about, but as soon as it began I realized why I wanted to see it in the first place; its mainly female, absolutely brilliant cast! And they did not disappoint. Great performances throughout, and a great film.
It is one of those movies that tugs hard at your heartstrings, and might even trigger some tears [read: a lot of tears], but it leaves you uplifted at the end. Since I had forgot all about the premise of the film, it sort of caught me off guard when I was already tired, sick, and "soft", so before I knew it I was bawling my eyes out in front of the TV, but at the end it left me smiling, so I would not call it a depressing. I do recommend this film, but be aware that it is a total [old school style] chick-flick, and as such, should come with a bottle of wine, a box of tissues, and a gallon of Ben & Jerry's, and be watched with girl friend(s); not alone and mopey sans wine/ice cream.

Grade: 7.5