Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas, Movie Review

Okay it is Christmas day and for the first time in my life I am entering a blog on this very special day.  Now that I have past the 3/4 of a century mark it should seem like a long time but it really doesn’t.  For some reason life has carried on like a speeding bullet with no end in site and memories of the past rummaging through my memory banks.  I remember when I was five years old and we had this great Christmas in Amarillo, Texas.  It seems like it was just a few years back and I can remember the Christmas tree, the presents and the family reactions to this day.  My dad was a home brew guy and he always put the vat in the bathroom which required it to stay very dark most of the time.  He would put a cloth cover over the vat and wait for it to reach maturity.  While it seemed like an eternity then for it to make I guess it was just a few days.  The significance of this memory has really nothing to do with any grave, sad or happy memories.  Of course I could put some glum in it and say my dad was a hopeless alcoholic who drank his own brew to the point of being so drunk he couldn’t stand but that was not the case either.  He just did it as a hobby since he really never liked the taste of beer and never drank it.  To bring this to a close I would say that Christmas was one I will never forget and since all members of my immediate family that were there that day are deceased, I really have no one to share this story with.  So, for all my loyal readers out there, have a happy MEMORABLE CHRISTMAS and remember time does fly by and before long you will be over 3/4 of a century old!!

During the Christmas/New Year two week period it is great time to go to the movies.  All of the really good movies come out at this time so as to make the Academy Awards consideration, plus more people have the time and take the time to go to the movies.  So, I have been on a blitz campaign to see as many as possible.  So far, so good and there are some good ones to review!

Movie Reviews:(Please note, these movies are not listed in any particular order but just when then are listed on my note list.  The number of stars and narrative tells the tale, with one to five stars from worst to best, illustrating what I thought about them and then the narrative gives me a chance to say why I feel that way.)

“Annie”, ****, This is a musical re-make telling the story of a foster child who lives with a mean foster mom, with the hope her real mom and dad will come back and claim her.  Even though this is the setting of the story it is really hard to feel for the little orphan since she is so talented with such a great attitude.  So, it is a sad and glad story illustrated by the music and dance.  It is very different from the first take since it is so racially diversified, the rich tycoon running for mayor is black and the young foster child is black.  Both Jamie Foxx and Quvenzhane Wallis and all the other cast members do a great job.  It is a fun movie to see and enjoy.  Rated PG for some mild language and rude humor.

“Wild”, *****, This movie is a true story of one woman’s 1,100 mile solo hike undertaken  as a way to recover from recent life changing events and really find herself. The time frame is during the rebellious hippy movement in the USA, with Reese Witherspoon playing the lead part, while doing a believable job.  A well done movie rated R for sexual content, nudity, drug use, and language.     
“Exodus:  Gods and Kings”, *,  While this is supposed to be the next religious epic re-make of Moses taking his people out of the bad lands to the good lands, and parting the sea at the same time, it really failed at all of this. I found it completely missing the point with poor acting, un-realistic photography and dialogue mixed with modern language that just didn’t fit.  Since the defiant leader Moses was played by Charlton Heston the first time around, poor Christian Bale had a big set of sandals to fill.  While he did a fair job, his counter parts were arrogant and sloppy in their acting.  It was too long, but on the other hand when you are watching a bad movie it always seems too long.  Rated PG-13 for violence including battle sequences and intense images.  Note:  I want a refund!!

“John Wick”, ****, This is an intense movie from start to finish, but a good one.  Keanu Reeves plays the part of an ex-hit man(normally they do not have the luxury of retirement but since he was so proficient in his job, most of the real bad guys were fearful of him).  Since they did take out some revenge on him by killing his loved ones, including his very cute little beagle, he decided to come back and show them the way to eternal death.  This is a great action movie as we watch a good bad guy wipe out as many bad bad guys as you can imagine.  Along the way you just want to stand up and root for him to win the battle!!  Rated R for strong and bloody violence throughout, language and brief drug use. 

“The Theory of Everything”, *****,  This is a very diversified true story about brilliant physicist Stephen Hawking played by Eddie Redmayne(an Academy award for best actor is a must) and his wife played by Felicity Jones, (also a candidate for an Academy award for best supporting).  The story begins while he is in undergraduate school and has great opportunities to reveal his brilliance.  Then the story of his life really begins as he falls in love, is afflicted by a life altering disease, marries, obtains his doctorate, becomes more crippled but is recognized with world over for his brilliance, gets a divorce, then re-marries, etc., etc. Rated PG-13 for some thematic elements and suggestive material. 

(Now I am headed to other movies and will post the reviews asap!)

EA, SH.......:)!



Monday, December 08, 2014

Friday Night Lights III, Movie Reviews

Well the Friday night lights are getting dimmer as time marches on.  Last night two of my favorite teams lost and are putting up the jocks today.  I was able to see one of them in live action and it was a great game.  I had the advantage in watching these two since neither was my favorite team during the regular season, so whoever won was adopted as my team.  My clever way of being on the winning side.  As they played the school song after the game with one side screaming great stuff the other side had tears in their eyes.  Oh well as they say, someone has to win in any contest.  The guys from the south part of the great Llano Estacado plains really play rock solid, hard hitting, well coached, aggressive high school football and they should win the state title.  These guy’s come from families that work in the oil field, own the oilfield, or work in the huge cotton agriculture industry or own it.  So, they are country boys by nature and really play tough football.  My curiosity will prompt me to attend the next game of the winner if it is close by.  If I do that will keep the Friday night lights a glowing!!  To be continued.........(maybe)!

Movie Reviews:

“Best of Me”, ****, A very good romance movie, so much so that I was the only male in the theater that day.  As I looked around there were female couples exclusively.  So, I can say this is a girlie type movie, but I did enjoy it.  The story is about a pair of former high school sweethearts that reunite after many years living their present lives.  There are flashback scenes that require the younger and then older pair, but the acting is very good among relatively unknown actors.  A sad ending but it fits the tone of the story.  Rated PG-13 for sexuality, violence, some drug content and brief strong language.  

“Dumb and Dumber To”, **, This only gets two stars simply because it was so dumb. The first one was a little better, but this one really takes the cake in bad humor and dumb jokes.  Jeff Daniels and Jim Carrey play the lead(no one else in the acting business would want these roles, I would guess!).  Believe it or not it does have a serious story line, so I guess that is a reason to go see it.  Go to matinee or watch it on TV.  Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, partial nudity, language and some drug references. 

EA, SH.......:)!