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Good production values, good acting, personally didn't like it
It's the end of the world. How will this family survive? That's the basic idea. So you know what kind of movie you are getting into from the get-go. There comes a point in the plot where there may be a "way out" or a way to survive this end-of-world weather event. However, our family of protagonists are basically only driven to move forward by a "we deserve to survive, and other people don't deserve to survive as much as we do," which I found distasteful. Given that the entire plot revolves around this "we're better than other people, because we say so," it was very hard for me to enjoy the movie.
That said, shot well, good production values, great acting, very good cast, good soundtrack. I have no complaints about the movie itself, other than personally not enjoying the story. You may be into it. I disliked it quite a bit and won't see it again.
The Hitman's Bodyguard (2017)
So disapointing, it hurts
I love basically anything that the 2 leads have ever been in, from the genuinely good, well-produced masterpieces, to the silly, funny, absurd ones. This movie was so bad, it felt like a smack across the face.
I wanted this to be like "Safe Room," but silly/funny. There is nothing I enjoy more than a comedy/action or a comedy/horror.
The basic premise is not bad, and the characters they set up are also not terrible. There's just something that falls flat about everything that happens in this movie. Every time the movie sets up a joke, I was very hopeful, and somehow, something fell flat in the execution, and this movie was just not funny.
I really, really hated it. The score of 2 is for the cast, because I still love these actors, despite the fact that the characters were SUPER poorly written. The crazy thing is that I am still so hopeful for this premise that I will definitely see the sequel when it comes out. I will never see this one again though. Waste of time.
Kingsman: The Golden Circle (2017)
I liked it as much as the first (a lot)
I really want to see this team over 20+ movies, like they did with James Bond. There is a wealth of potential plots that can occur, and I would be interested in seeing more movies with this cast, and the characters' premises. I love the secret organization. I love the cheesy "real men have manners" type of story-line. I was completely into the "colorful megalomaniac" baddie that these types of movies thrive on. Moore was just as colorful and megalomaniac as Jackson was in the first one. I loved the goofy science of all the gadgets. So many things seemed like a playful wink at James Bond details. I really, really enjoyed it.
Please make more of these movies. I will watch it with my nephews, as soon as they are old enough for the single, perhaps questionable sex-scene.
The Wrong Missy (2020)
Typical Sandler production
This group of people does not know how to write good, believable characters. The dialogue is dumb, and the whole plot is super silly. On multiple occasions, it trivializes consent and assault, which is just not funny. Almost no one is likable (both male and female characters.) There is the obligatory Sandler movie "evil woman" character. Nothing genuinely funny happens. Nothing remotely credible happens. Like every Sandler it also tries at an emotional schmultzy ending. I love David Spade, so I'm glad I saw it, but i'll never see it again. Two stars just for Spade.
Wine Country (2019)
More like a podcast than a movie
If you like the cast, you will like this movie. They all have characters close to who they really are. It's written well and acted well. A very good movie for a very specific audience.
We Summon the Darkness (2019)
Pretty good idea, but weak execution
Teen slasher with not enough slashing. Three teen girls meet three teen boys at a metal concert, and they take the party to a remote farm-house. Meanwhile, there are news stories about satanic murders being blamed on cults.
Pretty straight forward plot. The twists that occur are very easy to see coming. Nothing was reinvented with this movie. Nothing clever occurs throughout, though there is some intermittent suspense. You know what is going to happen at every beat, but there are still one or two thrills as you get there.
The production values are not bad, and at least it is shot well. But the dialogue is very poor, and much of the character interactions are not credible. The ending was also profoundly stupid.
Overall, disappointing. I probably won't choose to see this again, but if it's on TV, I might not change the channel.
Best series in existence
I am overjoyed at the success this show has seen. It is so funny, so clever, so exciting, and overall so fun to watch. I watch and re-watch each series regularly.
Highly, highly recommended.
In the Cut (2003)
Self-important, lame Noir attempt
I think they made this film just for the graphic sex scene between the 2 leads. So much of this is otherwise terrible. Bad dialogue. Unbelievable interactions between characters. Bad lighting and soundtrack. I really did not enjoy this. Will never see again. Skip it.
Phenomenal cast, great acting and high production values. Crazy good action with very compelling characters to root for. This viewing experience was just amazing. I enjoyed every second of this film.
Home invasion, stuck-in-the-woods, family drama with some solid gore to boot. This was incredibly fun to watch. The soundtrack also added to the general atmosphere. And the setting and locations were gorgeous. This has easily become one of my favorite films.
I will watch it again and again. Highly recommended.
Very stupid and disappointing
This is such a great and funny premise. Unfortunately, the execution is totally horrendous. There is a place in comedy for misogyny, and that is in the realm of the absurd. So if the joke is "it's so crazy that someone would be so misogynist," that can be very funny. But this movie doesn't do that. The joke is always "women be crazy," "women be so stupid," "women be trippin," and "women be worth of killing." That's just not that funny. So, for me, the comedy was all pure, wet trash.
As for other film elements, like writing/plot, special f/x and makeup, and any internal logic, this movie falls completely short. The zombies are smart enough to operate saws, but not smart enough to open doors. They are scary enough to eat people, but easy to push over, etc... There was absolutely no follow through on anything the movie set up.
This was just overall, just stupid and not funny. I'll never see it again. Skip this garbage.
Not what I wanted to see and not something I'd see again
I was hoping for a fight movie. I personally found that there was very little violence. There were basically only 2 fist fights that bookend this movie, with a few gun fights in the middle.
The story is incredibly secondary, in that it is lazily written and filled with very stupid plot holes. I would have been ok with that, if there was more fighting. But I accept that I had a biased expectation that a Bautista movie would be filled with crazy acrobatic punching and kicking scenes. The action wasn't bad and it seems like all of the production values went towards those scenes. Too many other things are totally phoned in. For example, tracking down a character to a particular location and just explaining "they tracked your car here." No other explanation given; no gps tracker in the car, no mention of a license plate, no explanation why civilians can just "track" cars. Every plot development is just that lazily written. No explanation for how things progress, just progress.
The humor was not my personal taste. It seemed like lowest common denominator type of humor. The score is one point for every time I smiled during the movie. Full of clichés, very dumb story, very predictable, no tension, no excitement, and hugely disappointed in Najiani's role.
I definitely won't see this again. Maybe good as a kids movie?
Kingsman: The Secret Service (2014)
Make this the next James Bond series
Let's retire JB and that played out franchise and make 30 more of the Kingsman films!!
This is exactly what you want from your action-spy-films. From the colorful megalomaniac villains, to bombastic stakes, heart-wrenching double-crosses and incredible gadgets. The spy film is not a new genre, so this film did a great job of making a super compelling story from a well-known subject.
The characters are easy to root for. The dialogue is clever. The relationships and interactions are believable. It is a very easy film to enjoy.
I'll watch it again and again. Highly recommended.
A personal favorite
There is a lot about this movie that is goofy. You have to buy into a lot of supernatural elements, as well as some pretty egregious maltreatment of patients incarcerated in a mental health facility. I did. So I had no complaints about whether anything was realistic or not.
I'm not even what sure exactly what it is about this movie that has me loving it, but it is truly one of my favorite movies.
I bought into the mystery. I was compelled by the characters. I enjoyed the set designs and camera work. I believed in the frantic fear that the characters experienced, and most everything else the movie set up. The twists were also amazing, in my opinion.
Overall, I loved it. I've watched it at least 2 dozen times and will keep seeing it.
Highly recommend it.
I want this minivan
A boy is abducted at a park, and his kickass mom with her indestructible minivan must stop at nothing to get him back.
This is a hero story, so you have to accept what movies do, which is to adorn these heroes with "super power" gear. In this case, boy do vehicles take beating after
beating and continue to function at top capacity. I accepted that, so I was all in with this movie.
It is action-packed from start to finish. Car chase and crash scenes were great. There was some hand-to-hand fighting to, which was pretty good. There is overall a really good use of space, given that the majority of the movie takes laces inside vehicles.
The soundtrack also greatly added to the thrills and suspense that the movie was building upon.
The only thing that I hated was a photo montage through rolling credits with the absolute cheesiest pop song playing. If I had not loved the movie so much, that montage would have ruined it for me. But I loved the movie, so I just rolled my eyes at the silly, cheeseball montage.
I'll definitely watch this again. Highly recommended.
Danger One (2018)
This is how you write comedy horror
This movie was hysterical. This is exactly how to write comedy horror. This movie is also cast perfectly. It is the perfect combination of clever, witty banter and plot development with well-acted, well-cast characters.
The script is well-written, the production values are good and the soundtrack is great! All of the music adds to the mood being built in the movie. I will definitely be purchasing the soundtrack.
The intermittent violence adds to the comedy, as well as the action and suspense throughout.
Overall, this was a great watch, and I will be watching it again. Highly recommended.
Wrong Turn (2021)
Odd choice for the Wrong Turn series
I can't figure out if being a part of the Wrong Turn series makes this worse, or if I give it some credit for taking the slasher-in-the-woods genre to its 2020s evolution.
The sexually and racially diverse cast of protagonists is definitely a huge bummer. These kids are the most stereotypically douchy millenials that no one likes (unless you are one, and then you still don't like each other as much as compete for wokeness among one another.) And their dialogue is pure, wet garbage. So that was incredibly annoying.
Then it occurred to me that old slashers had douchy teens too, they were just the douchbags of the 1970s-1990s. So it is a good thing that Wrong Turn has evolved its douchbags to today's standards? The same could be said for the "woodland cannibals," updating the concept from uneducated yokels to "doomsday prepper-types." It's hard because I don't remember hating the 1970s kids, but I sure hate the 2020 ones.
I would have liked this more if it wasn't associated with the series.
Having said that: good production values, great locations and setting, pretty good gore (though insufficient times,) and good soundtrack throughout.
I also liked the ending.
Spenser Confidential (2020)
The Mark Wahlberg mould movie
Boston cop has to fight the system to restore justice to Southie. It's the every-Mark Wahlberg-movie. The reluctant hero seems to be his favorite role.
This one wasn't bad. More than anything, the cast is phenomenal. Every single main and supporting character is fantastic. It's acted well enough for Boston-Southie stereotype characters.
The plot was fairly common, and there were no gaping plot holes. They tried at comedy a couple of times, but the efforts fell flat. There were also a few missed opportunities for comedy, that i'm surprised the movie didn't go for. Overall, I would say that none of the intentional humor worked. I thought this would be more like Ted or The Other Guys, but it was just a generic cop-action-movie.
The action was good. The fights were pretty good, but I wised that there were more of them. I still liked it quite a bit. I'd watch it again, just to see this cast again. Recommended.
The Butterfly Room (2012)
Pretty lackluster horror with interested cast
One of the things i like most about this low-budget horror is the soundtrack. There were very interested choices for sound, unlike the regular horror trope of using screeching strings.
The movie itself is pretty goofy. All of the characters are exaggerated; the precocious child, the irresponsible mother, the evil old maid, the useless handyman, etc... The flashbacks are quite lame. The backstories in general are stupid. Everyone is melodramatic. The dialogue is quite bad, and people's interactions are generally not credible. Production values are ok, and there are a few nice kills. It was shot with a weird blue tint, which I happened to like, but might be off putting to some.
It was kind of nice seeing a movie with a 90% female cast being equally evil, good, helpful, and murderous. So, #feminism, I guess?
I won't see this again. Maybe see it once, as it's not completely terrible.
The Conjuring (2013)
I personally did not enjoy it, but it is very well made
This is perhaps the 10th iteration of an Amityville Horror film I have seen, and I happen to prefer the old ones. This didn't even feature the iconic home (for legal reasons, I'm sure.)
But I can't fault the movie too much for my own personal disappointment because it was incredibly well-made.
The cast is fantastic, and the acting is also very good. It is shot very well, which adds to the suspense throughout. The effects are very good, and the soundtrack adds to the enjoyment of the film. I'd still recommend it to others, but I won't be seeing it again given the choice to see other more interesting ghost/haunting films.
Hunter Killer (2018)
The generation's Hunt for Red October
This was great. Well-made, with great production values. The effects are well done and the action is suspenseful.
If you are looking for good Tom Clancy-type of movie, this is it. I loved it and will see it again. Highly recommended.
Fear of Rain (2021)
Terrible portrayal of struggles with mental health
Let's start with one positive: The cast wasn't terrible, though the acting was very sub-par. Character interactions were awful, but mostly due to poor writing. it's very hard to act well with such bad dialogue.
This movie was bad in film terms, in that the dialogue was trash, the plot developments were unbelievable, the world it created was not credible, the shaky camera work did not convey suspense, and the soundtrack was pretty lame.
But more than anything, its portrayal of schizophrenia does a HUGE disservice to the mental health community. Anyone who has ever known anyone with schizophrenia or worked in the field of broader mental health is at a disadvantage in attempts to advocate for a better understanding, because of this terrible portrayal. This movie shows everything that you would not do if your loved one was ill, and everything that wouldn't happen if they were refusing medication.
In terms of the movie, it probably could have done a better job if it wither stuck to one genre; either Thriller or Drama. It is the attempt to do both that let down the audience. At the end, you feel like you have wasted your time.
This may have gotten a better score from me, but its odiously poor job at portraying schizophrenia was too damaging.
I would like a series of at least 10 prequels, please!
The fighting in this was incredible! A crew of ex-special forces officers from all over the world are hired as mercenaries to rescue a kidnapped child.
Straight-forward plot with lots of room for adventure and violence, and boy was there ever lots of adventure and violence!
If you like fight movies, watch this. It doesn't waste a second on anything boring or irrelevant. I'll definitely see it again, and I wasn't all the sequels that set up this crew and see them take contracts all over the world.
What a waste of such a good premise!
It's the distant future and humans have destroyed the planet. A group tries to build a time machine (presumably to go back and save the world.) Instead, they receive a message from the future asking them to send the time machine creator's son. What a cool set up.
The movie looks great. The effects are very good, and the scenery, camera shots, lighting, set design, etc... everything on that front was great. Everything else is so disappointingly stupid.
One of the characters was given the "cute and artistic" trait of painting flowers on the masks that everyone wears in order to survive. She does this right through the sightline of the mask, essentially making them useless for actual use. Why? Why not make her make flowers out of trash, if the point was to tell the audience she's cool, creative, and loves flowers.
The dialogue is exactly the same; it stands in the way of what would make sense, but it's in the movie to create movement between sets.
I think the movie tried to make a point about faith, but it was so clumsy that I didn't fully get what it was going for. I think maybe faith is good? Have faith, maybe?
Skip this garbage. Too bad, because it's a good idea and damn, does it ever look good.
Looks great, well shot, yet very bad movie
There are so many other cave movies that I wanted to see look like this. It is gorgeous. Well lit, beautiful colors, amazing panoramic shots.
Everything else about the movie is dumb. I particularly dislike when people who the viewer is supposed to take seriously as experts in their field are this stupid and careless. If you have a highly safety-sensitive job that says "nobody goes anywhere alone," and every character carelessly goes off on their own at every opportunity, I just think they are bad at their job. So every future attempt the movie makes to have those people say anything of value just makes me think "who cares what this idiot says. They are bad at their job." I can't stand that in movies.
This is only getting points because of the stark juxtaposition between how bad everything is, and how good it looks.
Secret Window (2004)
Not into it
Because the cast and location are so limited, the story and plot really had to carry this movie. Unfortunately, I found too many things lazy and unresolved or unexplained.
The ending was not bad, but that'snot a reason to sit through the rest of the movie again. Skip it. See all these actors in better movies.