Tag Archives: Movie Reviews

John Wick: Well Worn Trope in a Fresh World!

John Wick Is Cool - 10-23-14

Why would we go to see yet another hitman comes out of retirement to wreak vengeance movie?

Because it takes the reliable (okay, maybe overused) trope and reinvigorates it with style, a degree of wit and a unique world with unusual details. Also, Keanu Reeves at his best.

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Bill Murray Makes St. Vincent More!

Murray & Lieberher Cruising - 10-23-14

St. Vincent is a film that tells a story that we’ve seen many times before – a curmudgeonly older guy rediscovers life because of the influence of a child, while teaching that child about life. The difference between St. Vincent and those many other similarly plotting movies is that this film has a cast that includes Bill Murray.

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Ouija: Spiffy Premise, Cookie Cutter Movie!

Ouija - Universal - 11-23-14

Remember those Ouija boards that we used to use to scare ourselves silly when we were kids? Well, there’s a microbudgeted horror film about some kids who get into big supernatural trouble because they didn’t follow the rules. It’s a pretty lame effort at bringing classic (which is to say clichéd) tropes to an adolescent-friendly introduction to Horror 101, but it’ll make a big profit even if only does have its predicted $20 mill opening weekend.

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Fury – Ideals are Peaceful, History is Violent!

Fury - Cast - 11-16-14

Fury ratchets up the intensity from the opening moments and maintains it for over two hours through the introduction of characters that initially feel stock but become something else – and escalating violence and hints at the erosion of decency that war can cause.

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CIFF Review: LFO: Sounds Like Dark Fun!

LFO - Robert's Basement - 10-05-14

A lonely, sad sack scientist wannabe discovers a combination of very low frequencies that appear to make people extremely suggestible. At first, he uses his discovery to act out his wildest fantasies, but then, as his past catches up with him, he goes farther than even he could have imagined.

LFO is a micro-budgeted, low-fi sci-fi comedy from Sweden’s Antonio Tublen that looks at human nature in a supremely twisted way. It was one of my favorite films at this year’s Calgary International Film Festival.

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Gone Girl – Quite The Absorbing Exercise In Misdirection!

Gone Girl - 10-03-14

Nick and Amy Dunne has been married for five years – in fact, she disappears on the morning of the couple’s fifth anniversary. At first, Nick seems appropriately upset, but gradually his behaviour seems to be in conflict with his declared desire to find her. Did he kill her?

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My Old Lady – Unexpected Connections Make for Dark Dramedy!

my-old-lady-kline-smith - 10-02-14

Mathias ‘Call me Jim’ Gold is broke, thrice-divorced and hoping that he can sell the Parisian apartment his father left him to get out of the hole. Mathilde Girard is the old lady who lives in the apartment with her daughter, Chloe. Thanks to a complicated French law, called a viager, Mathias must pay Mme. Girard a monthly fee until she dies – then, and only then, will he be able to sell the apartment complication-free.

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Hector Mitty; Walter’s Search for Happiness!

Help Me - Ed Araqel

I’ve seen Hector and the Search for Happiness three times and a bit – only the first two were versions of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (Danny Kaye, 1947 and Ben Stiller, 2013) and the bit was parts of a TV series called My World and Welcome To It, all of which were based on the writing s of James Thurber.

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CIFF Review: The Honour Keeper (Lajwanti)

Lajwanti

Honour Keeper is yet another CIFF discovery – a delicate flower of a film by a first time director that unfolds to reveal itself in its own time and its own way. First time feature director/writer Pushpendra Singh has taken a Rajathani folk tale and placed in a setting that could be mistaken for centuries ago, were it not for the occasional glimpses of wind turbines.

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