Goin' to the Movies

Informin' You About Movies

Reviewin’ For You: SHUTTER ISLAND

This would have been perfect for October...

Shutter Island is a fast-paced and intelligent thriller with solid directing from the legendary Martin Scorsese and an all-star cast that manages to improve upon Dennis Lehane‘s entertaining novel and will keep audiences talking long after the credits. Set in 1954, the story follows U.S. marshal Teddy Daniels (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his new partner Chuck Aule (Mark Ruffalo) as they investigate the disappearance of a female “patient” named Rachel Solando from the mysterious prison for the criminally insane on “Shutter Island.” However, the delusional and violent Solando isn’t the only danger the two U.S. marshals face as they begin to unravel the island’s dark secrets while a powerful storm approaches, rendering escape or help impossible.

Join me after the break for the full review. Continue reading

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February 17, 2010 Posted by | Reviewin' For You | | Leave a comment

The Daily Cinema: “Daybreakers”

“Daybreakers” is a smarter than expected twist on the vampire genre that provides an interesting premise with a ton of stylistic violence and a rich world that outperforms the small budget with expert acting, but the film starts to lose steam as it comes to its sudden climax and gives the  feeling that this could have been so much more. However, the Spierig brothers certainly show the vampire mythology is far from being buried in the grave.

Join me for the full review after the jump. Continue reading

January 19, 2010 Posted by | Reviewin' For You, The Daily Cinema | | 2 Comments

Reviewin’ For You: ‘Avatar’

“Avatar” is one of the must-see films of the decade, but in only one venue: a 3-D theater. Even with all Avatar‘s faults, the film manages to bring enough to the table that you let it slide while becoming engrossed in the characters and the world on the screen. Hit the jump for the full review.

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December 28, 2009 Posted by | Reviewin' For You | | 3 Comments

Reviewin’ For You: ‘Up In The Air’

Allow me to tweak a quote from Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) for a bit: Take a backpack and fill it with every crappy, meaningless movie you have ever watched, and see how heavy it is. Really digs into your shoulders, right? All that wasted time. Well, now set that on fire. Just burn it. Then go watch this movie.

“Up In The Air” is a refreshing film because there is much to talk about when leaving the theater. More than that though, it is a film that is deeply personal for director Jason Reitman and it shows in the polish on the film and on the characters. There is depth to the roles that most films simply do not care to develop but Reitman took his time to brew these characters over the years which is a mark of quality film making.

UITA asks the question of why we tangle ourselves with so many burdens in life, whether it be a home, a car, possessions, friends, family, a spouse and even kids. Wouldn’t it be liberating to just let it all go? Bingham certainly feels that is the only way to live and he challenges us to give him a reason why he shouldn’t.

Bingham is a cut-off man with a love of traveling and the elite status of miles and rewards racked up from being loyal to a select few companies. His day job? Flying across the country and terminating employees for bosses that don’t have the guts to do it themselves. Bingham takes great pride in his work, not because the terminations are fun, but because he is damn good at consoling them just enough to keep them from snapping. He is the master of helping you to move on.

Throughout the journey we see Clooney give one of his best performances to date, but he isn’t alone. Anna Kendrick, playing a hot-shot graduate named Natalie Keener, is touching and naive in her role of Bingham’s understudy in the humanity of firing people in person.

The script keeps the movie rolling at a steady pace enough for the 109 minute run time to feel satisfying and not overlong. Not quite a dramedy as Reitman’s last two films might be classified, UITA manages to pack in an unexpected amount of laughs in an otherwise concise drama about life.

Make no mistake, this is a film you will want to put in that backpack you don’t burn.

Up In The Air is in limited release right now, playing in only 12 theaters nation wide. The film will expand each weekend until its wide release during the Christmas weekend.

December 5, 2009 Posted by | Reviewin' For You | , , , , | Leave a comment

Reviewin’ For You: ‘Paranormal Activity’

cellpics10-5-09 098On Thursday, at midnight, I cringed in anticipation and jumped a few times and ended up sleeping with the TV on SportsCenter. Why? Because I watched Paramount’s fantastically frightful “Paranormal Activity”. Now, your results will vary and I have slept well since that night without the aid of SportsCenter to block out any odd noises that might have kept me up, but the film is effectively scary and just plain fun.

Before I get ahead of myself, I don’t want to hype the film too much. If you go in with extremely high expectations, you are likely to come away disappointed as hardly any film ever lives up to ridiculous hype. Especially this film that has featured people talking of audience members crying or running out of the theater yelling. None of those things happened at my screening, but again, your results may vary.

Hit the jump for plot details (no spoilers here), impressions, and how you can see the film near you.

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October 5, 2009 Posted by | Reviewin' For You | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Reviewin’ For You: ‘The Informant!’

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“The Informant!” stars Matt Damon in one of his zaniest roles to date with a twisted-yet-humorous tale of a VP turned informant that can’t keep his story straight. Quirky and full of satire, this fast-paced film spoofs whistle-blowers while adding commentary on what someone might have to gain, or lose, by being honest.

Hit the jump for the full review. Continue reading

September 19, 2009 Posted by | Reviewin' For You | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Reviewin’ For You: Tyson

tyson_posterI know, I know. This film has been out and has had mountains of praise lavished upon it. However, I don’t think I can stress this enough: SEE THIS FILM! Now! Stop what you are doing, go to your local video store and ask for it. If they don’t have it, buy it! Tomorrow, I’m actually going to buy it myself.

Now, I know what some of yall (I’m from Texas, damnit) are saying to yourselves; “I despise Tyson/boxing/documentaries, why would I see this film?” Well, you would probably be surprised by how much it affects you. Many have been brought to tears, many have cheered, and many more have walked away from this film with a new found respect for Mike Tyson and a new outlook on reading a book by its cover.

Is it uplifting? Yes. Is it also dark? Absolutely. Is it powerful? Without a doubt. After all, you are given unprecedented access by James Toback to one of the most controversial athletes this world has ever seen. Toback has a friendship and respect with Tyson that allowed him to get Tyson to open up, and clear the air a bit. We are given the highs and the lows of Tyson’s life, all in his voice or previous footage of Tyson.

If you think there are punches being pulled, make no mistake; Tyson lays it all out in the open, for you and I to judge. He has opened himself to scrutiny and praise, and you have to give the man a ton of respect for doing such a thing when he is so reviled and detested by so many.

The film follows a linear progression but does so with grace, changing locations, view points, and various other methods to get across to the viewer what is going on inside Tyson’s head.

I implore you to give this film a chance. Take a risk. It’s an hour and a half and if you aren’t hooked within the first 15-20 minutes, never take my advice again.

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September 8, 2009 Posted by | Reviewin' For You | , , , | Leave a comment

Reviewin’ For You: ‘G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra’

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So, I finally broke down and saw one of my cherished childhood memories brought to live-action this weekend (as evidenced by the ticket you see above). What I came away with was a mixed bag of a decent action story with tons of CGI sprinkled with a little bit of flair and personality aimed at a younger audience or the kid inside all of us.

Follow me after the break for the full breakdown. Continue reading

August 31, 2009 Posted by | Reviewin' For You | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment