1821 Pictures, Boies / Schiller Film Group, Handsomecharlie Films,

Natalie Portman, Joel Edgerton, Noah Emmerich, Ewan McGregor, Rodrigo Santoro, Boyd Holbrook

Jane Hammond (Natalie Portman) is a frontier woman trying her best to make a home for her husband, Billy (Noah Emmerich) and child. But Jane has a past. A gang of outlaws is chasing after them, and when her husband returns home badly injured by being shot, he tells her the gang is on the way to get them and to get away. But Jane does not back down, so she heads into town to find a former lover Dan Frost (Joel Edgerton) who is not very happy to see her, and she asks him for help to stand up to the gang.

Westerns are rare these days, and there’s nothing better than a good western. I was delighted to see this one come out. There have been a few lately (I’m thinking of The Hateful 8, for example) and I anxiously dug into this one. It is quite raw. The violence is real, and the story is the king in this film, as Natalie Portman pulls out an awesome performance. I was not expecting her to pull off a role like this that would appear out of her wheelhouse, but she played the wild west housewife who ain’t going to take crap from anybody very, very well. Joel Edgerton as Dan Frost is also a very good performance and brings all the different emotions and feelings out very well to. But this is also a very nice script. Just a simple story of danger and revenge and self defense, but it all comes together very chillingly. The violence is harsh, and we witness the cruelty of this battle, and like the great westerns of old, the suspense and the waiting keeps us on the edge of our seats. An excellent performance by all, and kudos for a tremendous screenplay that the director and the actors pulled off in a good show. If you love Westerns and don’t mind the R rating, this is a shocking thriller of a western that ought to be well worth seeing.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Movie Rentals Releasing Tuesday May 3, 2016

  • 400 Days
  • The 5th Wave
  • The Choice
  • Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors
  • Joy
  • Remember
  • A Royal Night Out

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Emmett/Furla Films, Giving Films,

Hayden Christensen, Kate Bosworth, Dwight Yoakam, Michael W. Smith, Fred Dalton Thompson, Jason Kennedy, Elizabeth Hunter, Bobby Batson, Hudson Meek

Based on the book and the true story of Don Piper (Hayden Christensen) who was driving on a rainy day, and hit head on by a Semi Truck and pronounced dead at the scene. Later he was found to have a pulse and was still alive so he was taken to the hospital with a very low chance to survive the night, but Don did survive and went through a torturous recover spanning many months and years. This film is a chronicle of the events that happened during the time Don was pronounced dead and revived through the challenges he went through as well as his family during his recovery.

This is most definitely a Christian film, with the baggage that goes along with the subject matter. Don and his family truly believe that he saw heaven and spent time there with deceased friends and loved ones during the time that he was dead and that he came back against his wishes at the time to earth to continue his ministry. This in itself will cause certain people to hate the film. But the Christian overtones are minimal as Don really tried to tell the entire story of his families adventure including many other issues outside the arena of faith and religion. In fact, through most of his recovery Don never mentioned his experience, even to his wife, for fear of people thinking him insane. For the other part of the human race that will be disappointed because there is not enough religion in this film, they have a beef as well and will probably get mad. I think most of the comments come from the faithful who have issues with how “unrealistic” it is done rather than from the atheists who probably avoided the film anyway. So for the rest of us who are in the middle, I thought this was a very well made film. I think Hayden and Kate did a good job in their roles as the couple who were affected by this tragedy, and the rest of the cast did a great job as well. There is, sort of a low budget TV movie feel to this film that is probably due to the limited budget after all, but the story was well told and it did give me a lot to think about. I enjoyed the other issues that affected the family and the physical and financial damages it caused the family to suffer. I thought it was a very good story and one that needed to be told. I imagine the book is also very good, and I have only heard good things about it although I have not read it yet. So for those more toward the middle and not out at the ends of the scale one way or the other, I think you will enjoy this story and it is a worthwhile use of your time.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Conglomerate Media, Lensbern Productions,

Thomas Ian Nicholas, Jon Heder, David Henrie, Jodie Sweetin, Armando Gutierrez, Arthur L. Bernstein, Ayla Kell, Hunter Gomez, Taylor Gray, Kate Katzman, Flora Bonfanti

Based on the book of the same name, this film follows Walt Disney youthful dreams and plans through the hard years starting out as an animator and following his dreams through several huge failures before discovering a little fellow named Mickey and making the famous statement that “It all started with a mouse!”

I really enjoyed this film very much. I have always been a fan of Mr. Disney, especially since I was born at the right time when he was reaching the peak of his success. I was one that ran home from school every day to get there in time to watch the Mickey Mouse Club on TV each afternoon. During the years I worked at the studio, when I would walk through the Legends Plaza I would stop at the plaque with Annette Funicello’s name and handprints, as Annette was my first celebrity crush when I was 10 like everyone else my age. I have heard the early stories of Walt’s difficult life, and his attempts to learn the animation business that was just starting. He was taken advantage of by much wiser and more crooked corporate folks and learned the hard way that the only way to survive was to own his own content, a lesson that he never ever forgot through the rest of his too short life. Thomas Ian Nicholas did a superb job as Walt, and I was duly impressed. Jon Heder played Roy Disney, and was Jon Heder. Many people did not care for Jon’s portrayal, but Roy was not a very vibrant character in real life either, and was the much needed money man who kept Walt’s fantasy from soaring out of control and crashing and burning. Roy kept Walt under control and often held him back from being too out there by bringing it back home many times. There are so many stories and anecdotes from Walt’s life, so keep in mind that this is a very focused look at a decade from the time Walt set out on his own to be an animator until the first Mickey cartoon was finally shown. It does not cover the big animated successes, Disneyland, the Burbank studios, Disney and all those things which are very well documented in many other films, particularly Disney’s own “The Reluctant Dragon” which shows the whole process in great detail at the new studios in Burbank (at the time). This film looks at live in Marceline, and Kansas City, and Walt’s first Laugh-o-gram studios. It follows the trip to California and the final setting up of the Hyperion Ave studio. Most of the time the guys worked out of a garage. It also helps us to get to know many of the early guys who worked with Walt to build his studios, many of which were lifetime friends and companions, and some who back-stabbed him and left to work for other companies. No one was as successful in the end as Walt was, but there were many hard times along the way. This film is available for streaming now that it’s been released on DVD and is easy to find. Aside for the great historical information, the film is also a heart-warming story of how sticking to your hopes and dreams can pay off with lots of hard work and willingness to fail before you can succeed. This was an excellent film, and I highly recommend it to all who may be interested.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Roth Films, Universal Pictures,

Chris Hemsworth, Charlize Theron, Emily Blunt, Jessica Chastain, Nick Frost, Sam Claflin, Rob Brydon

Long before Snow White the kingdoms were run by the evil queen Ravenna (Charlize Theron) and her sister Freya (Emily Blunt). Freya was in love, but was betrayed and she become bitter and hateful. Her powers arrived and she had the abilities of snow and ice, and headed out to the North to find her own kingdom. Her soldiers would conquer the other kingdoms and bring the young people to her ice castle in the North where she trained them to be her army while outlawing love. But a young huntsman Eric (Chris Hemsworth), the best male warrior and Sara (Jessica Chastain) the greatest female warrior fell in love and found themselves banished while the sisters set out to conquer the whole land and each other in an all out war.

This is such a very well done film. The actors, all four leads, are all extremely accomplished actors in their own right, but together they make an assemblage that is spectacular to watch. The special effects are fantastic, and there’s humor (especially with a group of dwarfs the join the heroes to fight the war) and lots of action in the battle scenes. The settings are breathtaking, including the snow and ice effects and such. The story is very strong and a very fitting prequel to the fairy tale of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. This was a really well done film and one of the best I have seen in a long time. Along with Disney’s Jungle Book, this is a very stunning time for feature films. Be sure to see both of these two films. This was a great experience, and this is one of those films you got to see on a big screen. This is what is best about going to theater. You can’t help but enjoy a night out for a blockbuster experience like this. Be sure not to miss it!

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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