Friday, April 11, 2014

Rio 2

Family Faire:  Rio 2 (2014) G  Your favorite feathered friends are back!  Jewel (Anne Hathaway), Blu (Jesse Eisenberg), and their three kids have left Rio and now are in the wilderness of the Amazon.  Blu thought he had it bad facing Nigel (Jermaine Clement), but he is about to encounter a worse enemy, his father-in-law.  I really liked the first Rio (2011), which I thought was funny and original.  This film isn't very original, the plot is predictable and the music, with the exception of the opening number, is a series of remixes of old songs.  Fans of the first film will be disappointed, especially that some of the characters from the first film, like Tracy Morgan's Luiz the dog, are barely featured.  Kids may enjoy the film (it's bright and silly), but parents will be bored.  The film was made in 3-D, but you can keep the extra money and see it in 2-D, as it didn't use the effect to its fullest potential. My Rating:  Cable  Rio 2 Website

My View:  Draft Day (2014) PG-13 Sonny (Kevin Costner) is the General Manager of the Cleveland Browns.  His team has a high draft pick, but Cleveland's owner (Frank Langella) wants to make a splash and trade up to take the number one draft pick. Complicating things - if Sonny doesn't make the right pick, it could cost him his job.  I enjoyed this film, mostly because I enjoyed the chemistry between Costner and Jennifer Garner, who plays the team's salary cap expert and love interest for Costner.  It's an interesting look at what goes on during the NFL draft and most football fans will enjoy it.  I just wish the ending had been a little better as they go for the easy way out.  My Rating:  Bargain Matinee  Draft Day Website

Indiefest: Joe (2014)  R  Joe (Nicolas Cage) is a solitary man who owns a company that specializes in killing trees for reforestation. He hires Gary (Tye Sheridan), a young man who lives with his homeless family. Soon, Gary and Joe strike up a friendship, but that friendship is threatened by Gary's alcoholic dad (Gary Poulter) and a troublemaker named, Willie (Ronnie Gene Blevins).  Nicolas Cage gives his best performance in years in a role that is very complex and layered.  Cage and Sheridan have great chemistry together and their scenes are some of the best of the film.  It's a film that doesn't disappoint in both its acting and storyline. My Rating:  Full Price  Joe Website My interview with Tye Sheridan and director David Gordon Green

Indiefest: The Raid 2 (2014)  R  Shortly after the raid that Police Officer Rama (Iko Uwans) barely survived, he goes undercover to bring down a crime syndicate and find the corrupt officers in his police force.  The first film, The Raid, was non-stop action with almost no plot.  This film has lots of action, but there is a plot to it, and that's a bad thing.  The plot is confusing, with too many characters, and makes this film not as enjoyable as the first.  The action sequences are amazing to watch, so much so that you wonder how many stunt people were injured making.  It's an enjoyable film but could have been made better if some of the non-action scenes were cut.  My Rating:  Bargain Matinee  The Raid 2 Website

Indiefest: The Unknown Known (2014) PG-13  Documentary on one of the most fascinating men in the history of our government, former Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld.  Filmmaker, Earl Morris is back again, giving us a detailed look at a man who was in the eye of the storm for so many events of the 70's, 80's and 90's, including 9/11, the invasion of Iraq and the internment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay.  Morris interviews Rumsfeld on-camera using the thousands of memos that Rumsfeld as a way of transitioning to different topics.  It's a brilliant film that delves into the mind of a very complex man.  My Rating:  Full Price  The Unknown Known Website  For a full length review of this film click here  

Indiefest:  Jodorowsky's Dune (2014)  PG-13 Documentary about director Alejandro Jodorowsky's quest to make a movie in the early 1970's of the Frank Herbert Sci-Fi novel Dune.  Jodorowsky worked for over two years on a project that would never be made.  He was a filmmaker who made very strange films that bordered on the absurd.  His most famous film, El Topo (1970), was a staple of the midnight film circuit for years on college campuses. He spent two years of his life compiling a team of artists and writers to create the film of his dreams, Dune.  Many of the artists that worked on this project went on to do amazing things, such as H. R. Gieger, who designed the look of Ridley Scott's groundbreaking film, Alien (1981).  It's a fascinating look at a man who had incredible vision for a film that would never get made.  It's a treat to watch and is a must for any Sci-Fi fan out there.  My Rating:  Full Price  Jodorowsky's Dune Website

My View:  Oculus (2014)   A young woman (Karen Gillian) tries to confirm her brother (Brenton Thwaites) didn't commit a horrific murder by proving it was done by a supernatural phenomenon.  This is a horror film that has not enough scary parts.  The film takes forever to get started and then never quite delivers.  I did like Karen Gillan as the head-strong sister who is willing to bet everything on trying to prove her brother didn't commit the murder.  But the film just doesn't give us the scary parts that we desperately need in a film like this.  My Rating:  Cable  Oculus Website 

Forgotten Film:  Permanent Record (1988)  PG-13 David (Alan Boyce) is a talented high school student who leads a rock band, is popular and is interactive with almost everyone at school.  His best friend and fellow band mate, Chris (Keanu Reeves), worships the ground that David walks on.  Chris' world changes when David does something that no one sees coming.  Reeves gives one of his best performances in this film - a very moving performance. The film is a little dated (it looks very 80's), but it's message is timeless and meaningful.  My Rating:  Full Price  Permanent Record Info  

Weird Credits: From the credits of Draft Day (2014):  Football coordinator

Coming Soon to a Theater Near You:  Locke (2014)  R The best film I saw at the Atlanta Film Festival!  The plot is simple - Ivan (Tom Hardy) is driving to London and is making phone call after phone call to try and fix a number of problems that have come up in his life.  Yes, it's an hour and a half of Tom Hardy driving a car at night, but it's an brilliant bit of filmmaking.  You are going to want to see this film.  Locke Info

Until Next Time!

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