Archive for Crime Story

ChubbCo Film, Blackbird, Code Red,

Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Steve Coogan, Rebecca Hall, Chloƫ Sevigny, Adepero Oduye

Former Teacher Paul (Steve Coogan) and his wife Claire (Laura Linney) meet for a very fancy dinner with his older brother, politician Stan Lohman (Richard Gere) and his wife. But there is another reason for the meeting and it’s not social. Their children have committed a horrible crime that has the city in an uproar, as it was caught on a security camera. But the kids have not yet been identified, so the problem is for the parents to decide what to do about it. How far are they willing to go to protect their kids, and what is the truth about the event? Was it a stupid mistake, an evil deed, beyond their control, or something that just got a little out of control. There is a lot to think about and a lot to decide, and the four people have four different opinions on what to do.

This is another example of a great story gone to waste. As this started out, I really expected it to be an interesting movie, but boy was I disappointed. The longer this movie went on, the more boring it went. The story is that the writer of the novel would not even attend the premier because he was so disappointed with the way the film was made. I wish I had skipped this one. The actors are really talented, and I don’t really know why this failed so bad for me. It just never got rolling and it was really dreary. I wanted to smack them all as time went on. I’m not sure if it was the screenplay or the directing, or what, but it simply didn’t work. Worst film I have seen n long, long time. Skip this one.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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ATO Pictures, Werc Werk Works, Spare Room Productions,

Greg Kinnear, Billy Crudup, Alan Arkin, David Harbour, Lea Thompson, Bob Balaban, Michelle Arthur, James Detmar, Michelle Hutchison, Chris Carlson

Mickey Prohaska (Greg Kinnear) is a slippery insurance salesman who will apparently say anything to make a sale. But while at a convention, he runs across a drunk lady in the bar who insists on coming up to his room. Next morning his wallet is gone. He heads home, already in financial trouble only to find out his credit cards have been maxed and he’s about to lose everything. But when he meets a elderly corn farmer named Gorvy Hauer who wants to pay for his insurance in pennies, but has an extremely rare valuable violin that the he isn’t even aware of, he thinks up a plan to sell the violin and taking the money. But one lie leads to another, and pretty soon Mickey is so buried in lies and troubles that he’s in deep, deep trouble.

This film was a good vehicle for Greg Kinnear. This is right in his wheelhouse. This is an interesting story which bears a second viewing. The first time through, it’s a really good crime story, with lots of crosses and betrayals and a lot of false leads, but the second time though, after you’ve seen the crime story, it’s a whole different film. This is a really clever sting movie that is intricately setup and worthy of Hitchcock. The nicest thing about this movie is the great acting found in it, as with talent like Billy Crudup, Alan Arkin, Lea Thompson, Bob Balaban, you can’t go wrong. THe cast had a blast making this film, and could see that it was a lot of fun developing their individual characters. This is similar to some of the other heist movies like Ocean’s Eleven, but the fun part is that you don’t know how any of these folks fit together until the very end. Watching Greg’s character Mickey slowing figure it out is a pleasure, but when he thinks he has it, he doesn’t know the half of it. This is a little movie without a huge budget, but really fun, and well put together. Though this film has been rolling around in my queue for years, I’m glad it finally bubbled up to the top. This was an enjoyable little mystery, and I can recommend it as something out of the ordinary.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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SBS Films,

Michelle Rodriguez, Sigourney Weaver, Tony Shalhoub, Anthony LaPaglia, Caitlin Gerard

Frank Kitchen (Michelle Rodriguez) is a cold blooded killer for hire. But when he kills the brother of rogue doctor Rachel Jane (Sigourney Weaver) he’s in for the ride of his life. Dr. Jane is a famous transgender surgeon who has been known to bend the law and finds herself with her license suspended and working underground. But when Frank is kidnapped, he wakes up as a full female as punishment by Dr. Jane, and he/she doesn’t like it a bit. She starts out on a vendetta to find and exact revenge on those who cause this to happen, and it’s ain’t pretty.

Michelle Rodriguez was really good in this movie. She did a great job. Along with the rest of the cast including Sigourney Weaver as the mad doctor, literally in a straight jacket through most of the movie, we’re treated to a rollercoaster ride back and forth between the flashbacks to what happened and how Frank dealt with it, and the present where Dr. Jane is fighting for her freedom. It is a cerebral movie which is more thought and reflection that actual action, although the violent parts are intense as well. This is a psycho drama, though, most of all and really looks at the strange situation of a hard-core male bad guy suddenly waking up as a woman and having to deal with that situation. It is a punishment of the strongest degree without hurting the person as much as physiologically injuring him instead. Dr. Jane also has a lot of reflection to do to determine why she did it, and to face the retribution Frank is going to send her way that is also really intense. It is a weird film, well acted, and quite interesting. It will make you think. I am still thinking about the movie days after watching it. It’s not a major film, it’s a little film, but not too bad and worth watching if you’re cool with the R rating it carries. If you like psychological thrillers, you will probably enjoy this one.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Summit Entertainment, Thunder Road Pictures, 87Eleven,

Keanu Reeves, Common, Laurence Fishburne, Riccardo Scamarcio, Ruby Rose, John Leguizamo, Ian McShane

John Wick worked in an organization of criminal masterminds, and is a skilled assassin, indeed. In the first installment, he got out of the organization only to be pulled back in. In the second session, he again wishes simply to be left alone, but he found he has a huge price on his head, and must run for his life for everyone is out to kill him. But he has one last job he must undertake to get out, but it’s obvious in this world that no one gets out alive. With everyone out for him, John has to use all his skills and call in a favor or two just to keep breathing. John is in for a hard night!

I am shocked that I cannot find any record of my having seen 2014’s original John Wick, but it seems I somehow missed it. Perhaps that was part of my trouble with this movie. In the early 70’s I went on a mission to the Philippines in the height of the Shaw Brothers great Kung Fu movies. It was the time when Bruce Lee was in Hong Kong making films, and others like Wang Yu were turning out top notch Kung Fu movies galore, and they were very popular over there. I developed a bit of a soft spot for Kung Fu Films, but I also knew they were very, very silly. One guy surrounded by 25 killers who wanted him dead armed with all kinds of weapons, and they would jump around in a circle while one at a time attacks and gets taken out by the hero one by one. 25 to 1 is not very good odds, but 25 to 1 to 1 to 1 to 1 to 1 ad nauseum seems a bit better. That is the feeling I got watching this movie, but I didn’t get a soft spot for this one, as I expect more out of a Hollywood film. The plot is so very wafer thin, and 99.9% of the movie is John Wick running and fighting and shooting with unbelievable odds, yet pulling out time and time again. Truthfully the realism of this movie is very very low. On the other hand though, there is an audience who will love this for all the non-stop action and unbelievable fight scenes. In that respect, it is very well done, which is why I gave the film a decent score. I personally was not caught up by the story, and didn’t really get into it very much, but I have great respect for the stunt choreography and the CGI effects, but especially the stunts. It is a showcase of non-stop fight sequences and they’re well done, just hard to accept, and certainly beyond belief. For that reason, I’m not going to say go out and see this film immediately, as I really didn’t care that much for the experience.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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Unified Pictures, Media House Capital, A Single Shot Productions,

Sam Rockwell, William H. Macy, Ted Levine, Kelly Reilly, Jason Isaacs, Joe Anderson, Jeffrey Wright, Ophelia Lovibond, Amy Sloan, W. Earl Brown

John Moon (Sam Rockwell) is a hunter, though convicted a few times of poaching, he seems fearless as he hunts down game illegally. But a mistaken shot finds a beautiful young woman dead. John panics and decides to hide the body, but in the process finds a great deal of money hidden in a cave where he tries to hide the money. John has an estranged wife and daughter who quickly become the target of the bad backwoods criminals that find out that John has their money. Things just getting worse as John tries his best to resolve it without anyone more dying.

This is an unusual story. The backwoods West Virginia dialect is a little tough to follow, but it does feel very realistic. With a simple single storyline, you’d think this would get boring, but it never seems to. The story of one bad decision which leads to a landslide of events is actually quite interesting. This is another film that has been in my queue for ages, but has finally floated to the top of my queue. As intriguing as the story is by itself, I must say that Sam Rockwell’s performance is pretty good. He played the loner guy really well. William H Macy has a smaller role as the small town lawyer, but he never disappoints in bringing the role to life. There is a lot of intrigue and suspense and it was a nice surprise to pop this DVD in the player this afternoon. Not a well known movie at all, but certainly worth watching. I enjoyed this.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog

 

 

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