Archive for May, 2011

Movie Rentals Releasing Tuesday May 31, 2011

  • Drive Angry
  • Biutiful
  • Green Hornet (Netflix release)

Author: EdG

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Warner Bros. Pictures, Legendary Pictures, Green Hat Films

Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis, Justin Bartha, Ken Jeong, Paul Giamatti, Mike Tyson, Jeffrey Tambor, Mason Lee, Jamie Chung, Sasha Barrese, Gillian Vigman

The buddies from the first Hangover are now ready to celebrate Stu’s (Ed Helms) wedding to a stunning Thai girl, but the problem is he wants to have the wedding in Thailand with her parents. The “wolf pack” is planning to make the trip to the resort in Thailand, but want to throw an awesome bachelor party, but Stu is having none of it. His bachelor party is at IHOP with orange juice and pancakes. But Doug’s (Justin Bartha) wife insists they invite Alan (Zach Galifianakis) because he has been very depressed since the last party and really wants to be included. Off to the resort, but Phil talks them into one single beer (American, still sealed) on the beach by a small bonfire, and Alan brings some Marshmallows to toast. Next thing you know, the guys wake up in a seedy hotel in downtown Bankok with a little monkey and they’ve lost Teddy (Mason Lee) the brides younger brother. No one can remember anything, and just like before they have to figure out where they’ve been and what they’ve done in order to find poor Teddy.

This is just like The Hangover, very raunchy and with lots of serious adult humor and body parts. The new part is that they are in a foreign country which adds some complication to the Vegas bash, and Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong) has a lot bigger part in this film. It is very similar to the first one. It has to be or it wouldn’t be the sequel. It’s just nice to have more fun with the same gang of misfits again. Like “Kitchen Nightmares” (Chef Ramsey hates the food, the people refuse to change and defend themselves, they have a horrible service and someone quits, Chef’s staff changes the restaurant and the menu, the owners don’t like it, then they embrace it, everyone hugs and everyone lives happy ever after) there are no surprises in this film too. We know they’re going to get hammered and screw everything up, and nearly miss the wedding. But we have no idea how bad it’s going to be, or what in the world they are going to find out that they did last night. That’s the fun of the film, that we are surprised at how badly the screwed up, and yet they manage to figure it all out in the most bizzarre ways.

If you are a fan of the first Hangover film, you can’t help but like these guys. You’re going to enjoy it. But if you’re skittish at the raunchy jokes and naughty bits, you better keep away. The closing credits are always the worst, but there are some surprising bits in the rest of the movie too. These guys owe a lot to the Three Stooges. It was fun, laughing out loud at a movie for a change. It’s a crackup.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Rating: 4.0/5 (1 vote cast)

Author: EdG

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Pathé, Django Films, Ciné B

Jean-Claude Donda, Eilidh Rankin, Duncan MacNeil, Raymond Mearns, James T. Muir, Tom Urie, Paul Bandey

The Illusionist (not to be confused with the Jim Norton one, this one is an animated film from France) is a story about an aging magician, Tatischeff (Jean-Claude Donda) who works his way from job to job as his career is declining and he’s been replaced by rock bands and the like. He keeps taking jobs at smaller and more feeble venues, until finally he meets Alice (Eilidh Rankin), a young girl who believes that he is really magic. He takes her in and raises her as his own, and hides from her the troubles that he encounters. Feeding her belief in him may be the financial undoing of him altogether.

This is a charming story. It’s animated, but it’s animated for grown ups, not little kids. This is a very touching story of a very lonely man, and his caring for a little girl who needs him and admires him. There are very sad parts, and very heart wrenching parts. The animation is very detailed, and very cartoon-y. There is hardly any dialog, and the story is told through the animation and the expression that is drawn is a way that is easy to understand. I rated this film very high because of the powerful story and the excellent way it’s shared via animation only. This is an example of what a fantastic animated film can look like. It was nominated as best animated film of the year, and it couldn’t stand up against “Toy Story 3“, but it’s a completely different kind of story. The emotion that this film brings out in such a simple story is as amazing at the emotion TS3 can bring up in very expensive and complicated ways. This is a simple little film, but is very, very powerful. I completely enjoyed watching this, and consider it very good. I would definitely compare this to UP!, not in a technological way, but in the feel of the story.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)

Author: EdG

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Hunting Lane Films, Silverwood Films

Ryan Gosling, Michelle Williams, Mike Vogel, John Doman, Jen Jones, Faith Wladyka, Ben Shenkman, Maryann Plunkett


Blue Valentine is an unflinching story of love and hate. Once they were crazy in love with each other, Cindy (Michelle Williams) and Dean (Ryan Gosling) have now grown far apart. Cindy is bored with her life and dreaming of something better, and Dean is very lonely wondering where Cindy has gone. Not to say it’s not his fault, as he can be mean and violent, but truly wonders why she doesn’t want him anymore.

The story is a gritty, down to the bone look at why people once in love are so far apart. Dean is childish which drives Cindy nuts, and she is cold and aloof. This story is told in two parts that intertwine. One part is when they met and fell in love, and the other is years later when things have gotten about as bad as they can.

I don’t think the story judges them, but looks at what is really going on without holding back. It’s not a pretty story, but it is poignant and cuts right to the chase. The characters seem very real and the actors do a great job. The dreary area of rural Pennsylvania is right on, and very familiar to me. A lot of people are struggling through the same kinds of problems, and maybe looking closely at their situation is useful to help us work out our own issues, whatever they are. It’s an interesting character study and worthwhile if you are interested in a down to earth family tragedy film. It’s not a feel good film by any means, but it’s real life unadorned. I wanted these two to work it out, but perhaps it’s just too much to overcome.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Rating: 3.0/5 (1 vote cast)

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Jerry Bruckheimer Films, Moving Picture Company (MPC), Translux

Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz, Geoffrey Rush, Ian McShane, Gemma Ward, Judi Dench, Sam Claflin, Astrid Berges-Frisbey, Richard Griffiths, Keith Richards


Jack is back! Back in the city, Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) is in need of a ship. The Spanish are off on a quest to find the Fountain of Youth of Ponce de Leon fame, and the English do not want the Spaniards to get there first. They’ve made Barbosa (Geoffrey Rush) (who lost the Black Pearl and his leg to Blackbeard (Ian McShane) a Captain and given him a ship, but he needs Jack’s map to find the way. Jack meanwhile has met an impostor who has taken his name and has a ship (none other than Blackbeard’s) and convinces Jack to go with them to find the Fountain of Youth. The Pirates saga continues with film number four of the series and brings a lot of adventure and treachery along the way.

On Stranger Tides is a strong film with all the great stuff 1,2, and 3 had. It’s missing Will and Elizabeth (Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightly) but we don’t really miss them. They are just ignored and there is no time wasted in explaining why they’re not here. Penelope Cruz is a decent addition, although she is not great in this film and she’s a little out of her comfort zone with this role, for sure. But Barbosa is now a Captain in the Royal Navy of all things, and Blackbeard is an awful menacing bad guy. There’s no major point to the story, just an excuse for a little pirating and mayhem, but that’s ok because the action and adventure is non-stop. There are sub-quests along the way that are a little to simple, but the views are so sumptuous along the way that we don’t care if it has a wonderful back story. We know these guys well now, and so we’re very comfortable in where they’re coming from.

I watched it in IMAX 3-D and at a matinée showing at $18.00 a ticket, it was highly expensive, but I was happy to fork out the money for a special occasion like this. It was spectacular to be in the middle of the huge IMAX screen and the 3-D I felt was stunning. I am getting to really enjoy 3-D and hope it even becomes easier as time goes by. It’s a fairly long movie, as it should be, and well worth the nearly 3 hour investment of time. I highly recommend On Stranger Tides, especially for anyone who liked the first one, as the stories got a little overloaded in the last two films and it kind of bogged down a little, but this one was, to me, almost as great as the first time. It was nice that it ended up being tons of fun. Even the monkey has a cameo.

P.S. The mermaid is kinda cute, but trust me, it’s not worth it to try to make friends with their kind. They can be pretty nasty!!!

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Rating: 4.0/5 (1 vote cast)

Author: EdG

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