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Author Topic: Never Ending Movie Marathon (short reviews)  (Read 68573 times)
samuelrichardscott
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« Reply #15 on: May 29, 2010, 01:48:25 PM »



Paranormal Activity (2007) United Kingdom Blu-ray - Rental

Overview:
Katie (Katie Featherson) and Micah (Micah Sloat) are a twenty-something couple who've just moved into a new home in San Diego, California. Katie has an interest in the paranormal and believes that malevolent spirits have been following her since childhood, though Micah is not so easily convinced. However, after several nights of loud noises and strange happenings, Micah starts to agree with Katie that some sort of ghost may have followed them to the new home. After a paranormal researcher tells the couple he can't help them, Micah decides to take control of the situation and sets up a battery of video cameras so if a spirit manifests itself, he can capture its behavior on tape. Once the surveillance cameras are in place, Katie and Micah bring in an Ouija board in an effort to talk to the spirits, a move that deeply offends the ghosts. Paranormal Activity was the first feature film from writer and director Oren Peli.

My Thoughts:
Despite a microbudget of just $15000, Paranormal Activity was one of the biggest hits at cinemas of 2009. Unfortunately as this was my first viewing I was unable to avoid the hype that the movie generated which usually makes me expect more than I get. This is no different. The movie builds up the suspense and the tension phenomenally, in fact it does it so well, that when the time comes for a scare you feel completely annoyed as you get nothing but a large sound effect or Katie being pulled away. The acting and direction is very good as far as debuts go and it'll be good to see what Oren Peli brings us in the future but I just can't help but feel that I was overcome with the hype when it came to actual scares, despite enjoying the tension building segments. I have heard mixed feelings about the ending on the theatrical version (which is what I watched) and I'm undecided as to whether I liked it or not at this time. Despite the things I didn't like though, I think this was a great achievement considering the budget and certainly think it will be worthy of an eventual buy. 3.5/5
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samuelrichardscott
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« Reply #16 on: May 29, 2010, 03:53:29 PM »



Up (2009) United Kingdom Blu-ray (rental)

Overview:
From the revolutionary minds of Pixar Animation Studios and the acclaimed director of Monsters, Inc. comes a hilariously uplifting adventure where the sky is no longer the limit.
Carl Fredricksen, a retired balloon salesman, is part rascal, part dreamer who is ready for his last chance at high-flying excitement. Tying thousands of balloons to his house, Carl sets off to the lost world of his childhood dreams. Unbeknownst to Carl, Russell, an overeager 8-year-old Wilderness Explorer who has never ventured beyond his backyard, is in the wrong place at the wrong time - Carl's front porch! The world's most unlikely duo reach new heights and meet fantastic friends like Dug, a dog with a special collar that allows him to speak, and Kevin, a rare 13-foot-tall flightless bird. Stuck together in the wilds of the jungle, Carl realises that sometimes life's biggest adventures aren't the ones you set out looking for.
Up reaches new heights with a pristine picture, theatre-quality sound and hours of never-before-seen bonus features available only on Blu-ray™ Hi-Def. It's an adventure that will send your spirits soaring!

My Thoughts:
So I finally got around to watching Pixar's Up and have to say that I was absolutely blown away. After viewing the first twenty minutes and the moment that Carl reads the part of Ellie's scrapbook that has photos of the marriage, I can't think of anybody that will say it is impossible for animated features to portray emotion as much as a live action movie. Up was well animated, well paced, well cast and well scripted but unfortunately, there were two things that I wasn't so keen on (but that's not to say I disliked them). First was Dug, a character I felt was slightly misplaced at times and the second were the dogs in airplanes which seemed as though it was an afterthought IMO. Apart from those very minor points though, this makes for excellent viewing. 4.5/5

I also caught the two shorts on the disc:
Partly Cloudy (2009) - 4.5/5
Dug's Special Mission (2009) - 3/5
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samuelrichardscott
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« Reply #17 on: May 29, 2010, 06:32:57 PM »



The Hurt Locker (2008) United Kingdom Blu-ray (rental)

Overview:
From visionary filmmaker Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker is an intense portrayal of elite soldiers who have one of the most dangerous jobs in the world: disarming bombs in the heat of combat. When renegade Sergeant William James (Jeremy Renner - 28 Weeks Later, The Assassination of Jesse James) takes command of a highly trained bomb disposal unit, he frequently risks the lives of himself and those around him with his suicidal methods and a complete disregard for danger. Caught in the middle are his subordinates Sergeant J.T. Sanborn (Anthony Mackie - Half Nelson, We Are Marshall) and Specialist Owen Eldridge (Brian Geraghty - We Are Marshall, Jarhead), who can only watch as their leader descends further into addiction: an addiction to war.

My Thoughts:
I was a little skeptical of this one because my old man said that he didn't like it as much as he thought he would. Usually this wouldn't mean anything to me, but he was a bomb disposal technician for his full Army service of over twenty years serving in the Gulf for over a year and Northern Ireland during some etchy times. Thankfully, he completed his full service just before the current war started and he now works for a private defence company. Despite this, I'm glad I did watch it because I enjoyed it. Not working in the field, I don't notice some of the technical stuff he was banging on about and instead I focused on the story which had me gripped. Bigelow manages to make the movie tense and suspenseful in all the right parts with a perfect spraying of both drama and action. Great stuff. 4.5/5
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samuelrichardscott
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« Reply #18 on: May 30, 2010, 01:08:04 AM »



Role Models (2008) United Kingdom Blu-ray (at friends house)

Overview:
Danny and Wheeler, well into their 30s, lack something: Danny feels stuck; he's sour and has driven away his terrific girlfriend. Wheeler chases any skirt he sees for empty sex. When they get in a fight with a tow-truck driver, they choose community service over jail and are assigned to be big brothers - Danny to Augie, a geek who loves participating in a weekend Medieval reenactment society, and Wheeler to Ronnie, a pint-size foul-mouthed kid. After a rocky start, things start to go well until both Danny and Wheeler make big mistakes. Can the two men figure out how to change enough to be role models to the boys?

My Thoughts:
I had seen this before so already knew I found it funny so on this viewing it was all about whether it held up or not. From the off, I loved the casting of this... Paul Rudd, Seann William Scott, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Elizabeth Banks and Jane Lynch but it wasn't until I watched it that I discovered Bobbe J. Thompson, a young actor who delivers hilarious lines one after the other. The story is a competant one with a quick start whilst still developing Rudd and Scott's characters nicely throwing you straight in and then the whole ending had me in stitches, even on this repeat viewing. One of my favourite comedies of 2008. 4/5
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samuelrichardscott
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« Reply #19 on: May 30, 2010, 01:24:31 AM »



Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001) R2 United Kingdom

Overview:
Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back is a tale of adventure on the open road. When Dante and Randal (of Clerks fame) get a restraining order to keep the punchy Jay and his hetero life-mate, Silent Bob, from selling drugs in front of the Quick Stop convenience store, their lives are suddenly empty. They find new purpose when their friend, Brodie, informs them a movie is being made featuring two infamous characters based on their likenesses. After visiting one of the creators of the Bluntman and Chronic, Holden McNeil, they set out to get what fat movie cash they deserve and hopefully put an end to people slandering them on the Internet. Along the way, they learn the rules of the road from a hitchhiking George Carlin, ride with a group of gorgeous jewel thieves, and incur the wrath of a hapless wildlife marshal for liberating an orangutan named Suzanne. The quest takes them from New Jersey to Hollywood where a showdown involving the police, the jewel thieves, and the Bluntman and Chronic filmmakers will decide the fate of Suzanne, Jay, Silent Bob, and their good names.

My Thoughts:
Before I start I suppose that first I should admit I am a Kevin Smith fanboy and don't even think Jersey Girl was that bad. Jay and Silent Bob, as any Smith fan will know, are two of the most popular characters in Smith's movies although they had previously always been on the sidelines. Finally, in 2001, they got their own movie which follows all of Smith's traits from his skill at writing hilarious dialogue right through to his self-confessed technical inabilities. He also manages to get some great cameos in this including Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Shannon Elizabeth, Jason Biggs and many more and we also get to see some familiar faces. The only thing that spoils this movie slightly for me is the poor casting of Will Ferrell but apart from that, if you enjoyed any of Smith's other movies, then chances are you'll like this. Clerks is still his best though. 4/5
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« Reply #20 on: May 30, 2010, 02:26:46 AM »



The Hurt Locker (2008) United Kingdom Blu-ray (rental)

Overview:
From visionary filmmaker Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker is an intense portrayal of elite soldiers who have one of the most dangerous jobs in the world: disarming bombs in the heat of combat. When renegade Sergeant William James (Jeremy Renner - 28 Weeks Later, The Assassination of Jesse James) takes command of a highly trained bomb disposal unit, he frequently risks the lives of himself and those around him with his suicidal methods and a complete disregard for danger. Caught in the middle are his subordinates Sergeant J.T. Sanborn (Anthony Mackie - Half Nelson, We Are Marshall) and Specialist Owen Eldridge (Brian Geraghty - We Are Marshall, Jarhead), who can only watch as their leader descends further into addiction: an addiction to war.

My Thoughts:
I was a little skeptical of this one because my old man said that he didn't like it as much as he thought he would. Usually this wouldn't mean anything to me, but he was a bomb disposal technician for his full Army service of over twenty years serving in the Gulf for over a year and Northern Ireland during some etchy times. Thankfully, he completed his full service just before the current war started and he now works for a private defence company. Despite this, I'm glad I did watch it because I enjoyed it. Not working in the field, I don't notice some of the technical stuff he was banging on about and instead I focused on the story which had me gripped. Bigelow manages to make the movie tense and suspenseful in all the right parts with a perfect spraying of both drama and action. Great stuff. 4.5/5

I loved this film. Really quite clever in structure. I also love it because I reviewed it on another site (version still here) and won a significant voucher that I still haven't fully spent! Dancing
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Jon
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Jimmy
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« Reply #21 on: May 30, 2010, 04:05:18 AM »

and won a significant voucher that I still haven't fully spent! Dancing
Stop buying BluRays with it and get the set I told you, finish the bava marathon and give us the chance to read the missing reviews you has in our marathon Tease
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Jon
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« Reply #22 on: May 30, 2010, 12:45:48 PM »

Blu-ray is a sickness, Jimmy, I have to feed it.  Red Card Bag
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Jon
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Jimmy
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« Reply #23 on: May 30, 2010, 05:31:25 PM »

See why I don't want to get a reader. Of course the fact it doesn't make any differences with the genre of movies I like also help... Anyway, I don't watch a movie to see an evercleaned image with a false non-sense audio; I want to feel and experience it the way it was originally (minus the drunk bum asleep near me and a couple of other things Devil).
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samuelrichardscott
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« Reply #24 on: May 31, 2010, 12:34:03 AM »

I read your review earlier Jon. Great stuff. Kind of off topic but today I've watched Mallrats, Screwed, The One, Love Actually and Operastion Dumbo Drop but can't be bothered to do reviews as I want to cram in as much as I can before I go offshore on Tuesday for two weeks.
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Jon
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« Reply #25 on: May 31, 2010, 01:23:13 AM »

Wow! That's a heck of a run. "Off shore"? What do you do, Sam?
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Jon
"NOBODY MOVE! I dropped me brain."
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samuelrichardscott
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« Reply #26 on: May 31, 2010, 01:25:44 AM »

Wow! That's a heck of a run. "Off shore"? What do you do, Sam?

I'm doing some consultancy work for an oil company. Will also be going to Nigeria and Kazakhstan off and on this year.
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Jon
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« Reply #27 on: May 31, 2010, 01:27:33 AM »

Cool! I've always been an IT technician and currently do a job that keeps me changed to a desk.  Roll Eyes
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Jon
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samuelrichardscott
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« Reply #28 on: June 21, 2010, 08:56:24 AM »



Dumb and Dumber (1994) R2 United Kingdom

Overview:
Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels are too lame to live--and too dense to die--as a pair of deliriously dim-witted pals on a cross-country road trip to return a briefcase full of cash to its rightful owner. Along the way they'll confound cops, kidnappers and anyone and everyone who had the misfortune of crossing their paths in this comic caper for every idiot in the family!

My Thoughts:
When it comes to Jim Carrey movies, I am neither a lover nor a hater. He is a good enough comic actor who has been in some above average funny movies like The Mask and Ace Ventura, both of which make use of his 'rubber face crazy' humour and of course the slightly less crazy but equally as fun movies Liar Liar and Yes Man. However for me, it's his offbeat films I really enjoy with my two favourites being the phenomenal Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and the criminally underrated The Cable Guy. Unfortunately, for me at least, Dumb and Dumber is an overrated movie that tries too hard and ultimately fails. Despite a reasonably half decent 'plot' for a comedy, the laughs come far to slowly (and I'm a fan of the Farrelly Brothers) and I laughed once during the entire movie (when Lauren Holly gets taken out by a snowball from about 2 feet away). I know I'll get some flack for this one but I've never seen the charm. Skip it. 1.5/5
« Last Edit: June 21, 2010, 08:59:42 AM by samuelrichardscott » Logged
samuelrichardscott
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« Reply #29 on: June 21, 2010, 12:01:43 PM »



Detroit Rock City (1999) R2 United Kingdom

Overview:
Known as the greatest band in the land, KISS rocked the world during the 70's with their outrageous lyrics and eccentric style. Paying tribute to the legendary rock band that gave new meaning to the term 'Rock Superstar', DETROIT ROCK CITY is an hilarious coming-of-age comedy about four teenagers who embark on a wild pilgrimage to attend a KISS concert in Detroit. Driven by their passion to see their favourite rock group live, the teens will stop at nothing to scam their way into the sold out concert.

My Thoughts:
Before I start, I suppose I should say that I don't really care for KISS or their music but I do enjoy comedies about having to get something or somewhere (like Newcastle season tickets in Purely Belter). I actually picked this up because of actress Melanie Lynskey who doesn't get as much recognition as she deserves and she is unfortunately underused here, albeit in a nice little sideplot. There is a great cameo from Shannon Tweed (who is married to Gene Simmons) and as a whole the cast are OK for the movie with Edward Furlong and Lin Shaye putting in the better performances. As far as the story goes, it's what you expect. Everything goes wrong and then everything goes right. The only real problem with this movie is the lack of laugh out loud moments. There are one or two but I expect more from this type of comedy. Still, it's worth picking up. 3/5
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