July 8, 2014
They Came Together (2014)

IMDB Summary: When Joel and Molly meet, it’s hate at first sight: his big Corporate Candy Company threatens to shut down her quirky indie shop. Plus, Joel is hung up on his sexy ex. But amazingly, they fall in love, until they break up about two thirds of the way through.

“You didn’t tell me your parents were white supremacists!” that’s it. That’s literally the comedy of this film, and it’s wonderful. It’s basically early 2000s SNL reenacting every Nora Ephron film ever made. (Ok except Julie & Julia) However, I loved the humor. It’s typical Amy Poehler and Paul Rudd humor, sort of slap-stick, sort of witty, really weird stuff.

The overall point of the film is to ridicule the absurdity of romantic comedies. The whole “goofy girl” and “idealistic young man” thing is outdated and completely unrealistic, similar to this film. I also believe this originally showcased at the film festival part of Bonaroo. I simply watched it on demand with my mom a few nights ago.

I really think it was hilarious. Not my favorite film by far, but I definitely find that it was entertaining, and let’s be honest, anything that Paul Rudd and Amy Poehler are in usually is worth watching once.

Rate: 5.5/10

July 3, 2014
Edge of Tomorrow (2014)

IMDB Summary: An officer finds himself caught in a time loop in a war with an alien race. His skills increase as he faces the same brutal combat scenarios, and his union with a Special Forces warrior gets him closer and closer to defeating the enemy.

Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt star in this mash-up film of Pacific Rim/Source Code/Groundhog Day/Oblivion in which Tom Cruise has to relive the same day in order to try and win a war. It’s pretty crazy.

This super futuristic film has a pretty intriguing plot. Like I said, it’s a mash-up of literally any random film that pertained to a surreal future. Cruise’s acting hasn’t really changed; he’s actually one of the more consistent actors in Hollywood today. He picks roles he knows he can do, nothing too crazy, and that’s cool! He’s found his niche and stuck with it. Blunt, on the other hand, has seen better roles. I’m not really sure why she was in this film, not because she wasn’t good, but because she seemed really misplaced the entire film.

The music was awful. However, being a summer blockbuster that’s to be expected.

The special effects were pretty good, I only saw it 2D but I was pretty impressed. The alien design was really similar to Pacific Rim (which had awesome visual effects).

This film had all the components of a typical summer blockbuster: awful music, ok plot and crazy special effects. I can’t say it was my favorite, but it was like two hours of overpriced entertainment!

Rate: 5/10

June 20, 2014
How to Marry A Millionaire (1953)

IMDB Summary: Three women set out to find eligible millionaires to marry, but find true love in the process.

Betty Grable, Marilyn Monroe, and Lauren Bacall star in this mid-50’s romantic comedy about “gold diggers” in their mid-20’s attempting to marry rich. Lauren Bacall plays Schatze Page, the mastermind of their girl group who has been burned by marrying a poor man before. Marilyn Monroe plays Pola, who is afraid men won’t like her for having glasses. Betty Grable plays Loco, and she can seduce men casually at the grocery store and I am SO ENVIOUS OF HER FOR THAT.

Like I said before, this is a total romantic comedy. Probably one of the first in the genre, which I totally award props for that. It’s really subtle humor, and sometimes it’s laughing at the expense of one of the girls being naïve, so I’m not in love with that, but this movie is nonetheless hilarious. By no means does this film qualify as cinematic merit for me. It has really great dialogue, and the acting is pretty good, but I’m just not completely in love with it. It’s understandable to watch it as a pure form of entertainment, like most in that time period.  I’m not a huge Monroe fan, but I adore Bacall every once in awhile. As for Grable, I really am not familiar with her other films, but I was pleasantly surprised. They all seemed equal in talent and screen time for this particular movie.

Millionaire was entertaining, it’s also on Netflix if you’re staying home tonight and feel like watching ridiculously gorgeous women do relatively funny things. It’s a really OK film for me. I would recommend this to people who also liked Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, or maybe Bridget Jones’ Diary. 

Rate:5/10

June 18, 2014
Goodfellas (1990)

IMDB Summary: Henry Hill and his friends work their way up through the mob hierarchy.

This is another installment in my blog of “Why I Love Scorsese Films.” Ray Liotta stars as gangster hopeful Henry Hill in this famous/infamous Scorsese film. I love it. Wow, just so powerful. Scorsese has this eye for a good plot, and actors to perfectly carry out said plot. Robert de Niro and Joe Pesci also play in this hardcore gangster-gang film about gangs in New York somewhere. This movie is really good. Not my favorite Scorsese film because I’m like, obsessed with The Departed, but definitely awesome.  

OK, 1. Scorsese is GOD

2. GOODFELLAS IS AWESOME FOR MANY LEGIT REASONS

3. WHEN IS SAY LEGIT REASONS I REALLY MEAN IT’S WORTH THE WATCH FOR RAY LIOTTA’S CHEST HAIR

No but seriously, way awesome characters + plot. Cinematography is very symbolic, but I’m not obsessed with it like The Aviator. It’s a really cool film because you basically identify with Henry Hill as the protagonist, you’re gunning for him to come out on top. But wait, he’s what society has labeled “a bad guy.” Scorsese basically sets up this entire gray area of film, implying that the blur between good and evil in today’s world is obsolete, as the devil inside of everyone is more apparent in certain events than others. Ray Liotta and Robert de Niro were killer in this movie (literally) but who really stole the stage, and the Oscar, for me was Joe Pesci as Tommy DeVito, mainly because he’s flippin’ crazy. I was amazed with how authentically gangster he seemed onscreen. Maybe he’s a gangster in real life, and that’s why he was so believable. Maybe.

I recommend this to any fan of Scorsese, or gang films. It’s actually one of the shorter Scorsese films!

Rate: 9/10

June 14, 2014
Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (2014)

IMDB Summary: Jack Ryan, as a young covert CIA analyst, uncovers a Russian plot to crash the U.S. economy with a terrorist attack.

Despite being the self-declared film snob that I am, on occasion I will succumb to an A-typical Hollywood blockbuster starring a hot dude and action.

And this, my friends/readers, was exactly that. Chris Pine leads as Jack Ryan in this Harrison Ford remake of the series. He’s a super-smart economics nerd that’s drafted into the CIA (CIA guy #1= Kevin Costner, of course) and he’s dating a super-mega-babe (does that need all of those dashes? I’m not sure, who cares?) Kiera Knightley, who, of course, plays a doctor by the name of Cathy. Jack and Cathy are living their happy lives, when-oh no-Russia threatens to ruin the American economy. That’s the plot. Jack=America=Good vs. Russia=Bad.

Let’s first talk about how fricken’ attractive Kiera Knghtley and Chris Pine are. Knightley does this American accent in the film that seems really unnatural for her, and her onscreen presence in the whole “American chick” thing doesn’t really go smoothly for me. (I could just be a linguistics nerd right now). However, Chris Pine and Kiera Knightley, wow, babes. It’s not fair that beautiful people exist like that! Whatever. The acting is OK. Not my favorite performance of mine for either of them, but it’s entertaining, and I think that’s just the main point of the film. It’s entertaining. It does not stimulate your brain cells into working overtime, it does not ask a philosophical question, it does not make you re-evaluate all that you’ve ever believed in (that is, of course, unless you believed in Soviet Russia-in which case I apologize.) It’s a Hollywood blockbuster with cheap chills and thrills and kicking and punching. I’m not going to highly recommend it at all, but if you want to see hot Chris Pine doing hot Chris Pine things, then yes watch this movie.

Rate:4/10

June 3, 2014
Maleficent (2014)

IMDB Summary: A vindictive fairy is driven to curse an infant princess only to realize the child may be the only one who can restore peace.

Disney’s most recent film stars Angelina Jolie as Maleficent, the supposed super evil villain from the classic princess movie Sleeping Beauty. I must saw, I am really surprised with this film in a very good way. Angelina taps into her mid-90’s angst (think PG version of Girl, Interrupted)  and I love it. I think Disney took something that audiences hold near and dear, and put a new twist on it, which worked out quite well. I saw this in 3D, and although I wasn’t exactly taken aback with awesome special effects, Jolie reminded me that she is an acting force to be reckoned with, and whoever wrote this film is a complete genius. It’s basically an elevated fan-fiction, except not gross. I loved the idea of humanizing the villain, and it’s a great lesson for kids that not everything is black and white, that conflicts include a lot of gray area too. Not so sure about the whole “out for vengeance” thing that accompanies said lesson, as it reminded me of something Tarantino was trying to pursue in the Kill Bill films, but whatever.

Seriously though, the character development and overall plot development of the film was awesome. If anything, just watch the 2D version for that. The pacing goes a little too quickly; however I suppose it encaptures the main events, which is really all that matters. It’s delightfully witty at times, and I really have nothing else to say aside from how awesome the storyline is. I recommend this film to basically anyone, unless you have one of those stigmas that you’re too good for a Disney movie. 

Rate:8/10

June 2, 2014
The Spectacular Now (2013)

IMDB Summary: A hard-partying high school senior’s philosophy on life changes when he meets the not-so-typical “nice girl.”

What a classic example of how white dudes rule the world. Personally, I was not a fan. Actually, to be quite blunt, I absolutely hated the film. The one redeeming factor lies in the dreamy and very wide cinematography, which I find aesthetically pleasing, thus compensating for how dreadful this film was.

Sutter is your typical party-hard Senior classman. He is dumped by a beautiful girl, who is later portrayed as mentally unstable for exposing her emotional conflict of wanting to date boys who treat her better but still having feelings for Sutter. (Annoying.) Sutter then falls in love with Amy, played by Shaliene Woodley) even though she’s the “rebound” (honestly describing this film makes me nauseous.) I was overwhelmed with poor characters, typical stereotypes, mediocre acting, etc. Shailene Woodley was amazing in The Descendents, so I have faith in her ability to act, however this film was just poorly written and the characters were so awful that I just can’t see past that. I feel as though the film was written by a white man, for white guy audiences as a modern coming-of-age film. The failed attempt at a Holden Caufield persona is regarded with high praises  by film critics, which I don’t understand. The film centers around Sutter and his problems, which is totally fine, but his problems don’t develop him as a character and the whole pseudo-intellect philosophy he undergoes as his coming-of-age revelation was borderline misogynistic. All of the female characters were included solely to serve Sutter, rather than develop personas of their own, and that’s just frustrating to me.

I wouldn’t recommend this film.

Rate:2/10

May 27, 2014
X Men: Days of Futures Past (2014)

IMDB Summary: The X-Men send Wolverine to the past in a desperate effort to change history and prevent an event that results in doom for both humans and mutants.

Ok, let’s be honest. The original X Men films (X1, 2 and 3) had no film merit.

But then First Class came along, and like, my entire world changed! Brilliant acting, brilliant special effects, brilliant plot! Same goes for Futures! I am so impressed by how they filled plotholes within the major storyline, I loved the acting, the plot, just literally so impressed by this movie. It definitely resurrected the series in my eyes.

Also, let’s talk about James McAvoy, because God Bless Mother England for producing that brilliant man. Same goes for Michael Fassbender and Nicholas Hoult! Plus, the story brings back Storm and everyone was just SO GOOD.

The special effects and cinematography were good. At one point, Magneto straight up puts a baseball stadium around the White House so that was really cool. Some of the colors were odd, and the lighting was very 1970’s, which I guess is the effect they were going for.

OK, so I told you guys about how much I loved the plot, the acting, and the CGI stuff. Now, what am I missing? Jennifer Lawrence isn’t my favorite, but she did well in this movie!

I just really appreciate this film. Stay until the end. I highly suggest you all go!

Rate: 9/10

May 27, 2014
The Monuments Men (2014)

IMDB Summary: An unlikely World War II platoon is tasked to rescue art masterpieces from Nazi thieves and return them to their owners.

I’m sorry that I haven’t been updating this blog as of late! I had a plethora of finals and exams and unnecessary yet required activities to catch up on.

Then I started getting really into Buffy the Vampire Slayer (you can track my progress on the show by following my “sarah watches buffy” tag on Tumblr.

Alas, here is my first review after my absence, and not to be the bearer of bad news but it wasn’t that great. George Clooney (mega babe) directs this historical film based on the true story- yada yada. My history buff friend highly recommended it, but when I actually started to watch it, I realized that those who value historical accuracy praise the film with high accolades, but those who actually love film, thought it to fall flat. It was a stellar cast consistent of Bill Murray, Matt Damon, George Clooney, etc. but the storyline itself was completely anti-climactic. The plot was interesting, but mediocre, as well as the acting to support it. The dialogue had the occasional one-liner worth merit, but it didn’t flow well. Overall, I just wasn’t that into this film. I heard that it closely resembles what actually went down, but it just wasn’t that thrilling. Mainly just sad. And boring. Sorry Georgey. I wouldn’t recommend this film unless you’re going to stay inside and watch something with your mom on a Friday night. And your internet isn’t working. And you’ve lost any good taste you might have had.

Rate: 4/10

May 1, 2014
Gattaca (1997)

IMDB Summary: A genetically inferior man assumes the identity of a superior one in order to pursue his lifelong dream of space travel.

Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman, and Jude Law all star in this film about genetics being able to dictate lives. Although the plot was awesome, the movie just wasn’t all that I thought it was going to be. Obviously, there were many flaws with the plot and overall I just thought that it…wasn’t strange ENOUGH.

I wasn’t a fan of the romantic subplot between genetically inferior Vincent (Ethan Hawke) and a girl with heart disease (Uma Thurman). It was unneccesary and really irrelevant. Surprinsingly, I was attracted to both Ethan Hawke and Jude Law in this film, and I really shipped Hawke and Thurman when they were dating. I really don’t know what to say about this film rather than it was just OK and it was on Netflix. 

Rate:5/10