Friday, October 2, 2015

The Martian

Starring: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastian, Jeff Danials, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Donald Glover, Kate Mara, Michael Pena and Kristed Wiig
Running Time: 2 Hours and 21 Minutes

"The Martian" is obviously about space travel and the planet Mars. Matt Damon stars as Mark Watney, both an astronaut and a botanist. He is part of the crew on the manned mission to Mars. While they are on Mars, a very severe storm develops and Astronaut Watney is hit by a large flying object.  He was knocked unconscious, the crew saw no sign of life in him and decide they must abort their mission before their spacecraft sustains any more damage from the intense storm.
Just one small, insignificant issue... Astronaut Watney is still alive!!!
 When he wakes up from his delusional state, much to his horror, he finds himself completely alone! Just a mere 221 million miles from the planet Earth. There is not another mission to Mars planned by NASA for another four more years.
When he is able to get up, he realizes he has been impaled by a large stick or pole, which he needs to remove and treat the wound immediately, (Not really for the faint of heart), it is a pretty gruesome scene. He actually handles the situation very well, shooting off some F-bomb expletives, (quite a few times).. He realizes that he is completely dependent on himself if he intends to survive!
As he heals up, he plans out what he must do to sustain his life and survive in this hostile environment. He only has enough supplies to sustain life for thirty-one days!
He becomes very resourceful and clever. He finds out that he is indeed, very ingenious.
He also tries frantically to try and contact NASA, where eventually, he is successful.
NASA tries frantically to pull strings to send him supplies and also to figure out some way to rescue him.
I don't want to divulge too much of the plot and spoil the movie. I will just say that I thought it was a great, edge of your seat, very entertaining movie.
Matt Damon was excellent as Astronaut Mark Watney. He did an outstanding job!
 There was also some fun humor set against the serious side of the movie as well.
I believe that there will be a lot of comparisons made to the 2013 movie "Gravity" with Sandra Bullock, but, I can also see a little bit of the movie "Castaway" starring Tom Hanks in 2000 as well.
Parents be advised: This is rated PG-13, it is fairly strong subject matter being left all alone on a planet so far away. The F-bomb is dropped multiple times and even spelled out on the NASA computers from all of Astronaut Watney's frustration. Plus, Matt Damon does a total nude shot of his entire back side in one brief scene. I think children ages 13 and over will be entertained by this movie if, they (and their parents) are comfortable with the F-bombs and the nude scene.
I am giving "The Martian" four bags of popcorn.

Friday, September 25, 2015

The Intern

Starring: Robert DeNiro, Anne Hathaway, Rene Russo, Anders Holm, JoJo Kushner, Andrew Rannells, Adam DeVine, Zack Pearlman and Christina Scherer
Running Time: 2 Hours and 2 Minutes

It has been such a long time since there has been a good movie in my genre to review. Well... this is the one!
Such a great movie, it really tugs at the heartstrings.
Anne Hathaway stars as Jules Ostin, the young creator and owner of a super fast growing specialty clothing company. Her clothing company ATF, is in dire need of a CEO and someone who can help her with the demands of an up and coming company. Plus she is trying to balance her home life with her husband Matt
(Anders Holm) and her adorable daughter Paige
 (JoJo Kushner).
She and her assistant Cameron (Andrew Rannells) decide to try a different spin and hire a senior intern.
Enter Ben Whittaker (Robert DeNiro) a 70 something year old widower, who is finding that retirement just isn't his cup of tea. He sees the ad and decides to apply for the intern position. Much to his surprise, he is hired and starts immediately. He finds himself in a whirlwind situation where the workforce is nothing like it was when  he was formerly employed. He is working for a company that has only existed for a year and a half and employs around 250 employees. He is surrounded with young millennials who are very casual and laid back. Ben is the consummate professional in every way, he is assigned to be Jules' intern much to her chagrin. He is at her beck and call, he even becomes her driver where they are able to develop a more personal relationship, much like a father/daughter relationship, and it just works!
I found this movie to be so refreshing and uplifting. Such a sweet and tender movie with a lot of fun and comedy too! Robert DeNiro was impeccable as Ben and Anne Hathaway was perfect as the young entrepreneur Jules. Ben also becomes somewhat of a rock-star to all the young employees, especially to Davis (Zack Pearlman), they were great together. I thoroughly enjoyed this movie and think you will too.
Parents be advised: This is rated PG-13, but a pretty soft PG-13. However, the F-bomb was dropped once and there was one scene where Ben was getting a small massage in the office by the in-house Masseuse Fiona (Rene Russo) where he gets a little excited (awkward but funny), other than that it was pretty mellow. I think children ages ten and older will be fine with this movie.
I am giving "The Intern" three and a half bags of popcorn.

Friday, August 14, 2015

The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Starring:  Henry Cavill, Armie Hammer, Alicia Vikander, Elizabeth Debicki, Luca Calvni, Sylvester Groth and Hugh Grant
Running Time: 1 Hour and 56 Minutes

This is a perfect throwback to the 1960's, complete with everything being spot-on for that generation. The clothing and fashions were absolutely impeccable. This is a movie made up of absolutely beautiful people! It is loosely based on the original TV series that ran from 1964-1968.
This new movie also uses the two secret agents from the United States and Russia who work for U.N.C.L.E., the acronym for: United Network Command for Law and Enforcement.
Napoleon Solo (Henry Cavill) a professional art thief turned CIA Agent and KGB Agent Illya Kuyakin (Armie Hammer) are trying to stop the neo-nazis from acquiring an atomic bomb. Plus, they both get intertwined with the gorgeous Gaby (Alicia Vikander) who can fix any car and double as a drop-dead fashion model, I didn't quite understand her relationship with agents Solo and Kuyakin. She was paired up with the Russian, but he really didn't seem that interested in her? She also just happens to be the daughter of a long-lost German nuclear physicist. He is her father whom she had not seen for many years. Also, a fun character was Victoria (Elizabeth Debicki), a ruthless soul who plays the part perfectly. She so reminded me of the "Twiggy" era!  The story was a little weak and confusing, but I still enjoyed it. I loved the European scenery and the 60's culture, fashion and make-up, it was a true blast from the past! A fun popcorn movie.
This is definitely not your "007" or "Mission Impossible" caliber, but it is worth seeing just because it is polished with a lot of eye candy and just plain fun.
Parents be advised: "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." is rated PG-13, there is no real objectionable material, some profanity, a little partial nudity and  some violence, but I think children ages ten and over will be fine with this movie.
I am giving "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." three bags of popcorn.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation

Starring: Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg, Rebeca Ferguson, Ving Rhames, Sean Harris, Simon McBurney and Alec Baldwin
Running Time: 2 Hours and 11 Minutes

Wow, this movie is non-stop action from the very beginning to the very end. Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) is back, he is definitely back! This is the fifth installment of the "Mission Impossible" series starring Tom Cruise. This begins with Ethan in quite an incredible predicament! I found that this movie just reels you in and holds you tight throughout the entire motion picture.
 Ethan and his team including William Brandt (Jeremy Renner), Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg) and Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames) combine their efforts to take on the Syndicate, a wicked International organization designed to destroy the IMF. At the head of the Syndicate is a very sick and twisted leader, Lane (Sean Harris) who is completely evil and devoid of emotion.
Ethan finds himself caught and being held by some very ruthless and dangerous men who would do anything to get him to talk. A woman by the name of Ilsa Faust (Rebecca Ferguson) is also there and takes pity on him. She suddenly jumps into action and helps him out. She allows him to escape and therefore saves his life. There is sequence after sequence of unimaginable action that take place in this movie. I don't want to give to much away with the story on this one, it is just a movie you will have to see to believe. I found the drama and the intrigue were both interesting and exciting.
This is a heart-pounding edge of your seat thrill ride that will take your breath away! There is a scene where Ethan has to hold his breath for three minutes under water that is just unbelievable, and also a motorcycle chase that will leave you breathless.The chemistry between Ethan and Ilsa also really worked for me too. This movie has it all, drama, suspense, intrigue and the "Mission Impossible" theme music. I think this is my favorite of The Mission Impossible movies.
Parents be advised: This is a PG-13 rated movie. There is a lot of violence and some incredible action sequences that are very realistic. I would not advise children under thirteen for this movie. There was one bikini scene and a clothes changing scene but no real sexual innuendos also some mild profanity
I am giving "Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation" four bags of popcorn.

Friday, July 17, 2015


Starring: Paul Rudd, Michael Douglas, Evangeline Lilly, Corey Stoll, Michael Pena, Bobby Cannavale, Judy Greer and Abby Ryder Fortson
Running Time: 1 Hour and 57 Minutes

This is the movie Marvel fans have been dying to see with a new super-hero coming to life in
 "Ant-Man", I was also excited to see it and have already seen it twice!
 Paul Rudd stars as Scott Lang, an ex-con  with a Masters Degree in Electrical Engineering. He is battling his way back to regain his ex-wife Maggie's (Judy Greer) respect as well as come clean and try for a new start in life. He would do anything to have the opportunity to be a part of his adorable little daughter Cassie's (Abby Ryder Fortson) life and spend time with her. She is his entire world!
He tries desperately to stay strong and maintain his new found independence. When things don't go his way, he turns to his friend Luis (Michael Pena) who entices him to commit another crime and score (hopefully) big money from the safe of a millionaire. But, when he finally breaks into the super strong 1910 safe, all he finds is the "Ant-Man" suit! Suddenly he hears the voice of Dr. Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) telling him "I need you to be the Ant-Man"! Dr. Pym needs Scott Lang/Ant-Man to help him pull off a heist against the evil and corrupt Darren Cross/Yellowjacket (Corey Stoll) his protege. This is when the movie finally gets interesting! Yellowjackect is a dark and sinister character who will stop at nothing to bring his dream to fruition!
"Ant-Man" was a fun movie filled with a lot of comedy.The audience thoroughly enjoyed the humor and laughed throughout the entire movie. This is yet another movie based in San Francisco (I'm beginning to believe that San Francisco is the movie capital of the world)! If you just want to enjoy a fun-filled time escaping reality, this movie is for you. The special effects were great, especially when they transform  Scott Lang from a regular guy to teeny-tiny "Ant-Man". Seeing life from an insects point of view was interesting. Be sure and stay after the movie is over for the two extra scenes-they are  well worth it!
Parents be advised: "Ant-Man" is rated PG-13. I think children ages ten and over will enjoy this movie. There are some scenes with toys (yes toys) where the toys are enlarged and lose control. Thomas The Tank Engine for instance, is blown way up and ends up crashing, it was humorous but could be intimidating for young children. The insects could also be intimidating, but especially the nefarious Yellowjacket, He was a real bad guy!
I am giving "Ant-Man" three and a half bags of popcorn.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Self / Less

Starring: Ben Kingsley, Ryan Reynolds, Matthew Goode, Natalie Martinez and Victor Garber
Running Time: 1 Hour and 57 Minutes

The idea behind "Self / Less" is  an intriguing one but it is very unrealistic. The story centers around
Damian (Ben Kingsley) an incredibly wealthy man who has helped to develop the New York skyline and is an infamous Real Estate tycoon. He was diagnosed with terminal cancer and he is desperate to find a way out of his catastrophic death sentence! He finds a top secret company located in New Orleans that can perform a unique and very unbelievable procedure called "body shedding".
Body shedding is a process where you take a human body and stop the heart and then switch the spirit out of that body into another body! You also have to sever all ties with any former family or friends and stage your death.
The understanding that Damian is under, is that if he pays this company two hundred and fifty thousand dollars, he can have this procedure done on him. He anxiously heads to New Orleans to join the brand new body that was cultivated just for his spirit and therefore he can continue to live. He jumps at the opportunity to live forever in a brand new healthy body. When he wakes up after the body shedding occurs he finds himself in the body of the younger Damian (Ryan Reynolds), a man about fifty years his junior. He is informed that the transformation will take some time and that he will have to take a special medicine until it is complete. He finds himself alone in New Orleans with a healthy young body. He plays local street basketball and party's and has affairs with many young women! He finds himself  having flashbacks and major confusion.
He sets out to follow a feeling he keeps having and finds out that the new body he was assigned was actually another human who previously lived and was killed. This ends up being a very convoluted and confusing story to follow. I really wanted to like it, but it made me feel very strange.
Parents be advised: This movie is rated PG-13, but it is a strong PG-13. I would not recommend it for anyone under 13. Young Damian has multiple affairs with many young ladies with suggestive scenes. There is some strong fighting and gun-fighting violence. Also a pretty intense car chase and crash scene that is upsetting. The F-bomb is also dropped once in this movie. It is definitely a thriller which I really was not expecting.
I am giving "Self / Less" two bags of popcorn.


Starring the voices of: Sandra Bullock, Jon Hamm, Michael Keaton, Allison Janney and Steve Coogan.
Running Time: 1 Hour and 31 Minutes

"Minions" is a spin-off of the "Despicable Me" series.
The three Minions; Stuart, Kevin and Bob set out to work for Scarlet Overkill (Sandra Bullock) who is an evil and villainous female who wants to take over the entire world! She and her nefarious inventor husband Herb (Jon Hamm) plot  together to undermine others for world domination!
I found "Minions" to be a fun little summer movie.
 A portion of the story takes place in London, which I found to be really fun having vacationed in London. I loved how they showcased some of the historical and classic tourist sights. I really enjoyed the way they incorporated all of the different music with the movie, it was very clever. It takes place in 1968 so they used pop music from this era, a total flashback to the infamous "60's"!
This was a fun and happy movie that I think the whole family will enjoy. I found it to be a little edgy at times and some of the story might go right over the children's minds. I thought it played for adults (maybe even more so for adults) as well as the children.
 Be sure and stay until the credits finish rolling for a little more "Minions" humor.
Parents be advised: This movie is rated PG, so it has your typical potty humor that seems to be so popular in the movies these days.
I am giving "Minions" two and a half bags of popcorn

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