Tag Archives: Movie Reviews

The Losers is a fun, but Blatent Rip off of The A-Team

While watching The Losers I couldn’t escape two thoughts 1) Poor A-Team Movie and 2) As much as I love Chris Evans, he just isn’t right for Captain America.  The Losers is based on a DC/Vertigo comic book series that came out last year (available in 5 trade paperbacks) about a Special Forces group that was betrayed by their country.  In my head the A-Team theme music just went off.  If you can find them, they will help you. And if you go see The Losers you will have a good time.

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Movie Review: The Losers Has All the Makings of A Box Office Winner

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Anyone Else Would Be Dead By Now: The Losers is a tale of double cross and revenge centered upon the members of an elite U.S. Special Forces unit sent into the Bolivian jungle on a search and destroy mission. The team-Clay, Jensen, Roque, Pooch and Cougar -find themselves the target of a lethal betrayal instigated from inside by a powerful enemy known only as Max. Presumed dead, the group makes plans to even the score when the mysterious Aisha, a beautiful operative with her own agenda, joins them. Working together, they must remain deep undercover while tracking the heavily guarded Max, a ruthless man bent on embroiling the world in a new high-tech global war.

That’s the official Warner Brothers synopsis for the movie The Losers, which stars among others, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Zoe Saldana, Chris Evans and Jason Patric. It is based on characters in a graphic novel created by Andy Diggle and illustrated by Jocko. I have to admit right now, I’ve never read the graphic novels and so going into the screening of this action movie I knew absolutely nothing about the story of these four men and the lovely, mysterious Aisha, other than they were being played by actors I enjoy seeing on screen and that they were on a mission of revenge. I came out of the screening not only wanting to immediately see The Losers again, but with high anticipation for the sequel that surely has to be forthcoming.

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Kick-Ass made Michelle feel Giddy and it’s the Best movie of the Year!

The week I saw Kick-Ass was, not to be too hyperbolic, a Kick Ass week of Entertainment. It started with my last day Wondercon where I finally had time to catch How To Train A Dragon – Amazing movie, then when I got home from San Francisco, there was a copy of the season premiere of Doctor Who waiting for me, then that Wednesday I went to see a little movie called Kick-Ass. I was blown away by how much I loved this movie. It’s bold, over the top, funny and successfully blends a lot of different moods. This is how you do an adaptation! I didn’t need to know anything about the character or have read the source material to immediately understand what was going on and after watching the movie I immediately went to Amazon and ordered the Comic Book series it’s based on.

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Alice in Wonderland is too much like Tim Burton’s other films and the 3D Sucked, Michelle’s Review

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Here’s the problem with Alice in Wonderland: if a director other than Tim Burton did this movie, I probably would have liked it a lot better than I did. As it is, watching this movie makes me feel like the great and visionary Tim Burton has somehow become an average, Tim Burton wannabe. Everything about this movie felt derivative, like a pale imitation of a Burton movie or like he was phoning it in. All of the Burton visual tricks are here including a dark, Gothic backdrop, punctuated trippy set pieces, and the Tim Burton cast including his wife Helena Bonham Carter and favorite star Johnny Depp are on hand. The only thing missing is another boring film score from Danny Elfman – oh wait… Have I said recently how much I loathe Danny Elfman scores? It’s been the same score in every movie since Batman.

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Michelle Desperately wanted to Walk out of Shutter Island

I’ll admit I’ve never been a big fan of Leonardo DiCaprio, I think he’s a strong actor and certainly has that “It” factor but I’m always slightly disappointed by the movies he makes. This is due to the fact that he always picks “self important” films that strive to be great but always seem to fall short for one reason or another. Maybe it’s me, but he comes across as a tad arrogant. Examples of just above good, but not great movies “Titanic,” “Aviator,” “Gangs of New York,” “Blood Diamond” all movies that are marketed as the 2nd coming but fell short – and I can never put my finger on why.  His latest Shutter Island is a soul crushing bore that I desperately wanted to walk out on, but it’s a Leonardo and Martin Scorsese production so I thought it would get better.

I sat there for an hour thinking, “Why don’t I like this movie?” “Surely, something important is going to happen… any minute now.”  But no, Shutter Island is relentless is it’s incessant talking.  I get that it’s a procedural and a mystery, but come on; I don’t need a million conversations about a missing patient, or have 20 philosophical discussions with Ben Kingsley about the pros and cons of Psychotherapy vs. Psychotropic Drugs, I got the point the first couple of times, let’s move on. This is a movie that knows what it wants to be, but doesn’t have the story to back up the tone and mood it’s going for.

My feet told me to walk out, but my brain kept saying relax, it’s a slow build up but the pay off will be worth it. There is a twist at the end but by the time they got to it, I could care less and part of me was thinking this better not be a double twist or I’ll be really upset, then once the movie ended, I was annoyed that they didn’t do the double twist. I left the theater going what did I just waste 2 hours watching?

I liked Leonardo as the conflicted WWII Vet Marshall Teddy Daniels. He’s determined to find out what happened to a patient who seemed to have vanished out of thin air. I hated how Scorsese used music in this movie. There wasn’t much, but what was used was overbearing. The opening few minutes where Teddy and his new partner Chuck Aule (Mark Ruffalo) and his partner are talking is punched up by this blaring orchestral brass horn (I think) that is supposed to let us know this Island is Evil with a capitol E. It occasionally comes back during some later conversations as if to say, “wake up and pay attention, this is important.”

The trailers led me to believe that this would be a supernatural, ghost story but it turned out to be about crazy people in a dank isolated Psych Ward for the Criminally Insane.  The minute I saw the Island I started to think how cool this movie would have been if it was called Arkham Asylum and not Shutter Island because this facility is exactly how I always imagined Batman’s home for people like the Joker to look. The only way this movie became tolerable to me was I started picturing Bruce Wayne doing the investigating and how cool it would be if that was the Batmobile and not some 1950s police car, or if Leonardo as Bruce Wayne threw some smoke grenades into the Prison riot.

Shutter Island is really all about Director Martin Scorsese and not about the story. It’s about the tone and pacing he sets. If you like movies that are slow, dark, and is striving for a sense of foreboding then this movie is for you. Me, I desperately wanted to walk out.

Final Grade D

EM Review by
Michelle Alexandria
Originally Posted 02.20.2010

Chris Columbus Brings Magic Back, Michelle reviews Percy Jackson!

Damn you Christopher Columbus! You sucked me into the world magic and kid lit with Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, now that I’m over my obsession with this series, you return once again with another kid lit movie that I’ve never heard of Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. Sure it’s a blatant and weak rip off of Harry Potter, but Columbus has an eye for this material. While Director David Yates clearly hates magic and managed to suck all the magic out of the Potter films, Columbus loves and revels in it. He showed it in the first few HP films and it’s on display here.

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Crazy Mel returns to From the Edge of Darkness, Michelle’s Review!

Despite the fact that Mel Gibson is a troubled religious nut with numerous personal problems, Edge of Darkness comes along to remind us why we all love him anyway. Edge of Darkness is a talkier version of last year’s Taken. Here instead of having a father who is an ex spy with skills, the father is a current Boston Detective who is hell bent on finding out who killed his daughter. At first everyone assumes the killer was for revenge against Detective Craven (Mel Gibson) as the mystery unfolds he finds out his daughter got involved with an activist group and he didn’t really know her as well as he thought he did.

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The Book of Eli shows Denzel can be Bad and Still have Faith. Michelle’s Review!

The Hughes Brothers are back baby and in fine fashion. I really wasn’t in the mood to see a movie today, and certainly not a post apocalyptic one. I’ll admit I was ready to walk out ten minutes into The Book of Eli but the movie’s slow pacing actually sucked me in.  As Eli (Denzel Washington) walks this dirty, dank, desolate world we see how low humanity has sunk and the mystery of who this man is deepens.  This movie is literally and figuratively about faith on all levels – faith in God, faith in your fellow man, faith in the will to survive. It’s a message movie that doesn’t try to beat you over the head with its religious overtones – ok, it does, but for some reason I didn’t mind it as much and I’m a borderline Atheist.

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Movie Review: Sherlock Holmes is one Ugly Looking Movie so says Michelle!

With the release of this year’s big budget Hollywood version of the iconic British detective, Sherlock Holmes, I thought now would be a great time to delve into Holmes’ world. I’ll admit up until this year I didn’t read the books, watch any of the old movies or TV shows that featured the character. The first thing I did was download the Complete Sherlock Holmes collection onto my Kindle. I’m currently going through The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, so far I like it a lot but it’s not something I felt attached to. By the 6th short story in the collection, I figured out the formula and it got a bit boring. The collection is made for short bursts of reading, like on a metro ride to and from work. I rented Young Sherlock Holmes – which I loved and the early BBC Holmes on Netflix Instant Watch and enjoyed both.

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Movie Review: Michelle is NOT on the AVATAR Bandwagon! Thinks it’s Boring, Lifeless, and oh yeah the 3D Kind of Sucked!

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I went to the my new favorite mall today, Palisades Center Mall in NY to check out James Cameron’s Avatar 3D on a real iMax Screen, not the fake Max that’s near my house in MD. I walked into the theater ambivalent about what I was about to experience and left the packed theater feeling about the same.

Any movie that takes 15 long minutes to set up its premise via voiceover is in trouble. Especially when the narrator sounds like he’s reading the phone book. There’s no sense of urgency or emotion, just hey, “we’re on this planet with blue people who want to kill us. To survive we created these Avatars made of Human/Na’vi DNA that can walk and survive outside this compound. Oh yeah my brother died, so I have to decide if I’m going to replace him and take over his Avatar, because there’s a lot of money in it and I can’t walk anyway. So what the hell, you know?”

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MOVIE REVIEW: The Princess and the Frog: Ms. All Work and No Play Meet Mr. All Play and No Work!

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Once upon a time, little girls dreamed of growing up and discovering they were princesses – or of at least marrying a prince. Disney made a lot of movies based around that idea, some brilliant, some merely marvelous. The Princess and the Frog harkens back to those days and – although the film is set before and after World War I – brings a combination of modern attitudes, two [count ‘em, two] princesses, and an edge that can only be kindled by magic and dreams.

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