Cinelou Films, Echo Films, We’re Not Brothers Productions,

Daniel Barnz, Jennifer Aniston, Adriana Barraza, Felicity Huffman, William H. Macy, Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington, Chris Messina, Mamie Gummer, Lucy Punch, Britt Robertson, Paula Cale, Ashley Crow, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, Camille Guaty, Allen Maldonado, Camille Mana, Julio Oscar Mechoso

Claire Bennett(Jennifer Anniston) is in major chronic pain. She still manages to keep her sarcastic sense of humor, but her life is very lonely filled with narcotics and vodka. She belongs to a support group with others who are experiencing pain, but when one of the members commits suicide, Nina (Anna Kendrick), Claire sets out to investigate everything she can find about this girl.

You won’t know what happened to Claire, and try not to find out before you watch this movie. This is a dark tale of a great deal of pain and suffering, but there are many bright points. One is Silvana (Adriana Barraza) Claire’s housekeeper who is the one who cares for Claire the most. It’s hard to find out the cause of Claire’s situation, especially because she is always in a haze from the booze and drugs, but piece by piece we get clues of what happened. The very last second of the film is very poignant. Why is it called cake? Well, you’ll have to wait 1 hour and 15 minutes into the film to learn that piece of information. This is definitely the best performance I have ever seen from Jennifer Aniston. This is definitely a dramatic role, there is very little fun in it at all, but but she carries the story like a champ. There are also some other very good performances. There is a great deal to think about, and this is a very thought provoking character study. There is a very small but poignant scene with William H Macy as well that is very, very touching. Sam Worthington as Roy, Nena’s husband is also very well done. Jennifer’s character is so very lonely, but it’s discouraging how she chases everyone away that even tries to show her some compassion. This is an excellent film, and one that is very worthwhile. I highly recommend it as one of the best dramas I have seen in a long, long time. There is a lot of criticism of the movie, mostly from folks like don’t like the non-resolution of all the problems and issues. Some things that could take much more development in a mini-series are left out. But to me, I think that shows the brilliance of the writer and director. These kinds of problems don’t come to a conclusion in 90 minutes. These kinds of problems take decades to work through. But I think we are told plenty to give us lots to think about, and to decide where we think Claire is headed. I think it’s about right, the way it’s handled. And if you figure out the reason why every A in the titles is laying down sideways, feel free to let me know. I have an idea, but I’m not sure if I’m right.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Paramount Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM),

Adam Scott, Gillian Jacobs, Chevy Chase, Craig Robinson, Clark Duke, Angela Kerecz

The gang is back, but when Lou is shot, the gang decides the they have to go back in time to find out who did this, and stop him. But the tub does not take you where you want to go, it takes you where you NEED to go, so the guys end up 10 years in the future to stop the one who traveled “back” to shoot Lou. Good thing the hot tub still works.

This is the “long awaited” sequel to 2010’s Hot Tub Time Machine. It’s the same old gang, minus John Cusack as Adam, but we get the addition of Adam Scoot to play Adam Jr. in the future. This is a raunchy sequel to the equally raunchy original movie, but it isn’t hitting on all cylinders. First and foremost, the plot is really nutty. They are so confused with going to the future to fix the past which is the present is so confusing that even they lose the way. The concept of time travel in a Hot Tub was very unique and original in the first movie, and the issues problems with the paradox of time travel and the uniqueness of the idea was very fresh in the original. Now it’s not original and they lost sight of the original. The whole plot is really screwed up here. It’s funny in some parts, but not nearly as good as the original. So we’re stuck with some good actors doing the best they can with a weak story. Five years to develop a sequel and it still didn’t measure up. So what do I say about Hot Tub Time Machine 2? Well, it’s funny in places. Adam Scoot and Craig Robinson are especially good, but many of the jokes and gags fall flat, and the nasty stuff is hit or miss sometimes. A few times they seem to go a little too far. So it’s a good film to skip, cause you don’t really need to see this one. But if you really like the first one and you’re interested in a bunch of clowns bouncing through time with basically no purpose, then give it a try. It’s not horrible, it’s just not very good.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Brownstone Productions, Gold Circle Films, Universal Pictures,

Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Brittany Snow, Anna Camp, Alexis Knapp, Hana Mae Lee, Hailee Steinfeld, Elizabeth Banks, Katey Sagal, Skylar Astin, Adam DeVine

The US Champion A Capella group the Barden Bella’s are back from their championship win in the original in this song filled comedy sequel. Excited to perform in Washington D.C. for the President, an embarrassing wardrobe malfunction happens that cause the Bella’s to be stripped of their title and disbanded. But they make a deal that they are still allowed to attend the world championship contest in Copenhagen, and if they win, they will be reinstated. Despite all the challenges that face them, they set out to beat the German team and bring home the victory.

This is a worthy follow-up to the original movie. The humor is spot on and the music is really good. These girls can harmonize. There are a lot of cameos in this movie that will be surprising and unexpected. The script is predictable, and the plot is just like the first one. But there are so many good performances, and the humor comes out of nowhere. Many of jokes I wasn’t able to hear because the audience was laughing so hard from the previous joke. Granted this is a serious girl power movie, but that’s ok. There is plenty of fun moments for everyone. I was really surprised. I waited a long time to see the original film because I expected it to be just awful, but when I saw it I was surprised. This one is certainly just as good, just as funny, and equal or better than the first one. Elizabeth Banks had a part in this film that was really funny, but she also directed it. Like the hecklers from The Muppet Show or the announcers from many great comedy sports films, these two are hysterical, basically due to the lack of any sort of filter on this pair. They say what they are thinking no matter how wrong! There is another subplot in this film about an artist and a music producer that is absolutely hysterical. I was surprised when I got to theater on a Tuesday evening and found nearly every seat filled. The crowd was tremendous and it looks like a lot of folks are going to agree with me that the humor was spot on. Not extremely vulgar, it keeps the PG-13 rating, but the jokes are to the point and pretty raunchy from time to time. This was a good sequel and if you’re a comedy fan, this is one you don’t want to miss.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Movie Rentals Releasing Tuesday May 19, 2015

  • American Sniper
  • Before I Disappear
  • The Blue Room
  • Cymbeline
  • Girlhood
  • Hot Tub Time Machine 2
  • Leviathan
  • The Lving
  • Maya the Bee Movie
  • Strange Magic

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Abduction Films, Manis Film, Pink Buffalo Films,

Michael Ironside, Gill Bellows, Jesse Moss, Emily Perkins, Brittany Allen, Melanie Papalia, Sean Rogerson, Anja Savcic, Freddie Stroma

April (Brittany Allen) is a young woman whose parents have divorced. Mom is planning to sell the cabin in the woods for the cash, and asked April to go out there to take some pictures to help sell the place. She invites her boyfriend Kyle (Freddie Stroma) to go along, but he invited two other girls and guy who are their friends to make it a fun weekend where he planned to propose to April and throw a celebration party. But strange things are happening in the woods, and a crashed space ship creeps them all out until they realize that this is the real thing and their time is limited in this sci-fi horror film.

This is not a great film by any means, but it is what it sets out to be. It does not have high hopes for Oscar worthy performances. Basically it’s a little sci-fi horror film with scary aliens and lots of suspense. It’s a low budget film, put together with a lot of love of the genre, and it pulls it off pretty well. It takes a while for us to actually get to see what’s really going on, which helps build up the suspense as we get little hints and glimpses to let us know something is really wrong, but once the suspense has built up enough, the terror hits us full blast. Good performances by the whole cast, and certainly well done CGI and special effects make it a lot better to watch. This is the kind of little horror film that us horror fans love to pop in the DVD, pop some popcorn, and turn out the lights and enjoy. Yeah, it’s director more toward the teen audience perhaps, but I enjoyed it as well, and I haven’t been a teen in 40 years or so. Rather well done low budget scary movie that gives you what it sets out to do. Recommended for horror fans.

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