Thursday, January 6, 2011

Exit Through the Gift Shop (2010)

The story of how an eccentric French shop keeper and amateur film maker attempted to locate and befriend Banksy, only to have the artist turn the camera back on its owner. The film contains footage of Banksy, Shephard Fairey, Invader and many of the world's most infamous graffiti artists at work.

This is one of the most entertaining documentaries that I have watched. It starts out following a french film maker as he enters the world of street art as it slowly starts to explode. He travels around filming various artists, until finally he meets the legendary Banksy. Reluctant at first, Banksy finally allows him to film him while he works.

This movie takes you deep into the street art world, something that has become immensely popular and that is around much more than you even notice. Banksy pushes the limits with his work and sends a message with each piece of work that he does.

The best part about this movie is that it is not only a documentary about street art, but it also shows the making of a monster. Someone who went from a nobody to a wealthy artist over night, but riding the backs of other people to get there.

This movie was cool enough just with the artists work to go see it, add in an interesting plot and you have a very cool documentary that most people will enjoy.

When to Watch Rating: Indie Film Mood

Coming Soon to DVD

Invasion of the Bee Girls (1973)

A powerful cosmic force is turning Earth women into queen bees who kill men by wearing them out sexually. 

This puts the Bee in B-Movie. I think this movie was just an excuse for the director the film girls topless, but none the less he got a movie made.  Strange deaths start to happen in a small town, populated mostly by scientists. A government agent is sent to find out what is happening. Only men are dying, and from sexual exhaustion.

We soon find out that a group of women, who I guess are actually bees sorta, are having sex with the men and killing them, and then turning their wives/girlfriends into bees. I suppose to take over the world.

The movie looks awful, the film was very underexposed so scenes are very dark which makes it tough to see whats going on when half the movie takes place at night. Other than that nothing really sticks out as being terrible, the script of course is very laughable, which is a good thing. Apparently the original writer of the movie Nicholas Meyer, who is writing the next Martin Scorsese movie, sold the script and then it was changed alot to be a very campy movie, so much so he tried to get his name taken off of it. Who knows, maybe if they would have made it his way it could be a classic movie.

As I said earlier, it seems like just a way for the director to film girls naked, especially the scene where they show the transformation into a bee.  Its what you expect when it comes to these type of movies, it will make you laugh, but it is disappointing about how the movie looks.

When to Watch Rating: B-Movie Mania

Available on DVD and on Netflix

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Boy (2010)

It's 1984, and Michael Jackson is king-even in Waihau Bay, New Zealand. Here we meet Boy, an 11-year-old who lives on a farm with his gran, a goat, and his younger brother, Rocky (who thinks he has magic powers).

I watched this movie while I was half asleep on an airplane, so I wasn't expecting much. As the movie started I wasn't sure if I had made the right decision in what to watch, but it didn't take long to realize that I had found a true gem.

The movie is about "Boy", a boy who always talks about two things, Michael Jackson and his dad. He hadn't seen his dad since he was just a little boy, but all of his memories make his father out to be a super hero. Then when his dad shows up at his house one day with his two friends, Boy thinks his life is perfect. He soon finds out that his dad is a kid trapped in a mans body.

Sometimes it is hard to understand what they are saying or they use words that I've never heard before, so that will occasionally take you out of the movie. It really is unfortunate because I feel like alot of jokes I might be missing.

The relationship dynamics in this movie are great, and how the change from the beginning to the end makes this more than just a comedy.

When to Watch Rating: Indie Film Mood

Available on DVD

Friday, November 12, 2010

The Girl Who Played With Fire (2009)

As computer hacker Lisbeth and journalist Mikael investigate a sex-trafficking ring, Lisbeth is accused of three murders, causing her to go on the run while Mikael works to clear her name.

The "Millennium" trilogy has been an exciting export from Sweden over the last couple of years, so good in fact that Hollywood is already working on re-making the three films even though the 3rd one has just come out in America. For people who can handle sub-titles, I would recommend watching the originals first.

I saw the first one to long ago to do a review on it, but I just watched the last two movies this week, and they do not disappoint. Every film in the series seems to have a different genre to it.

Why write a review that has already been written well though. Visit Making the Movie for The Girl Who Played With Fire Review.

When to Watch Rating: Need for Entertainment

Available on Netflix Instant View

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

White on Rice (2009)

40-year-old Jimmy is growing up, or at least he's getting older. While mooching the upper bunk of his ten-year-old nephew's bed, he enjoys the never-ending generosity of his sister Aiko, and dodges the wrath of his impatient brother-in-law Tak.

This is one of the funnier indie movies I have seen this year.  Hiroshi Watanabe plays Jimmy, who lives with his sister and her husband because his wife divorced him and he is trying to get back on his feet. Something is a little off about Jimmy, he moved from Japan to America because he ran out of the food that his wife had prepared after she she told him she wanted a divorce. So we know Jimmy has a hard time taken care of himself, but he also has a big heart and only wants whats best for his sisters family.

Jimmy makes this movie hilarious, he isn't afraid to say whats on his mind for better or for worse. He is also trying to get a girl that is 15 years younger than him, who is a family friend that refers to him as Uncle Jimmy. (Not as creepy as I made it sound, actually very funny).

The movie also has heart which is nice, as Jimmy try's to find love, his sisters family struggles through a marriage that seems very distant and a young child that seems to be completely ignored by the family. They will all have to discover things about each other in order to keep the family together, even it takes people accidentally stabbing themselves in the stomach. The one thing I felt like the movie didn't do was give enough closure on the family though. That was a little disappointing.

I laughed a lot more watching this movie then I thought I would when I first saw the trailer, but I'm glad that I watched it as it was a wonderful surprise.

When to Watch Rating: Indie Film Mood

Available on Netflix Instant View

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Four Lions (2010)

Four Lions tells the story of a group of British jihadists who push their abstract dreams of glory to the breaking point.

This is the type of movie that unless it is done right can be pushing a very sensitive subject. When you make a movie about four people who want to be suicide bombers I think you can do it two ways. One, you can make it a very serious movie that takes inside the culture and mindset of these people and give an unseen look into their world. Two, make it a comedy about these characters that want to be jihadists but are just to stupid to make anything work. The one thing that wont work is combining the two.

The movie starts out as a comedy, and it has some pretty funny moments. While in a terrorist training camp, two of the members try to take down an American spy plane with a rocket launcher, they accidentally shoot backwards and take out a terrorist camp. It seems like everything they do is a mistake, their leader seems to be the only one capable of doing things right.

As the movie progresses though it starts to get a little more serious, but you still think that it will all turn out with a funny ending because these guys never seem to get things right. There is a moment in the movie where one of the character accidentally kills himself, and it is supposed to be funny (think Tropic Thunder), but you realize this is a character I actual like and it isn't funny how he dies. From there on out it continues to push a subject that really isn't funny. When you make jokes about suicide bomber killing people you have crossed a line.

There is one character in this movie that I think  they delve far enough into his character that when he completes his suicide mission you don't feel like it was all for nothing. That being said the movie crosses some touchy subjects and isn't really funny enough to make it worth it.

When to Watch Rating: While Plunging Your Head in Boiling Water

Now Playing in Select Theaters

Making the Movie Review - HERE

Monday, November 8, 2010

127 Hours (2010)

A mountain climber becomes trapped under a boulder while canyoneering alone near Moab, Utah and resorts to desperate measures in order to survive.

Danny Boyle returns to the big screen again with his first movie since Slumdog Millionaire. Boyle seems intent on mastering every single genre of movies, and he doesn't disappoint with this psychological/thriller/adventure/action/drama. Boyle recreates the story of Aron Ralston, a hiker who gets trapped when a boulder comes loose pins his arm to the canyon wall. Over the next 127 hours he will have to deal with the physical and emotional struggle to survive, and eventually have to make the decision of how far he is willing to go to get out from under the rock.

James Franco plays Aron, and already there is oscar buzz about his performance. Its hard to even imagine what you would go through in that situation, and watching Franco's performance it seems that he must have spent a lot of time with Ralston,  trying to find the right emotions to put into each day that he is stuck under the rock. Franco's performance is great as he struggles between trying to survive and the realization that he is about to die, and he is not happy with the way that he left his relationships with family and friends.

The other thing I really liked about the movie was it had a message, it seems like most movies these days are just about the big action scenes or the creepy hauntings, but don't have much heart. This movie brings a great message whether you are rock climbing alone in Utah or driving your car on the 101. You never know what moment is going to be your last, either from a rock trapping you in a canyon or your car flipping over on the highway. No one ever goes out expecting it to happen to them,  so people don't think about the things that matter most in their lives until it is to late.

Danny Boyle seems to have a little bit of a goofy side that comes out of him every once in a while, and unfortunately I think its the biggest setback in some of his movies. The Beach has the scene where it turns into a video game, and 127 hours has little pieces that seem just a little out of place. It doesn't hurt the movie at all, but I couldn't help like it took me out of the movie at the moment.  Reviewer John Ott put it best I think when he said it's a small budget movie made with a big budget, and I think at times it can feel a little over done.

127 Hours is a very tense movie that isn't for the feint of heart, but it is a true story that will entertain you as well as make you think. While it isn't the masterpiece that Slumdog Millionaire was, it is another excellent film from Danny Boyle.

When To Watch Rating: Now

Now Playing in Theaters

Making the Movie Review - HERE

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Megamind (2010)

The supervillain Megamind finally conquers his nemesis, the hero Metro Man... but finds his life pointless without a hero to fight.

Dreamworks brings its new animated comedy to the big screen in the form of Megamind, an evil blue alien with a giant head.  Megamind was sent away from his planet as a small child just moments before his planet was sucked into a black hole. At the same time another space ship left the planet heading for earth also. And so began the rivalry of Megamind and Metro Man. Even in grade school Metro Man was always the popular one, as all of Megaminds creations seemed to do more bad than good. Then Megamind realized that maybe instead of trying to be popular he should be evil.

The movie is voiced by an all star cast of Will Ferrell, Tina Fey, Jonah Hill, Brad Pitt, Ben Stiller, David Cross and J.K. Simmons. Will Ferrell is funny as always and really does a good job doing the voice acting, my favorite part is when he is voicing "Space Dad". The only actor in the movie that just doesn't feel like he fits is Jonah Hill. He is does a good job as the dorky camera guy but doesn't quite fit the role of Titan.

The animation is what you expect out of a Dreamworks movie, it looks great and even better in 3D. Dreamworks still isnt on the same level as Pixar, but they still do a good job.

Megamind is not on the same level as movies like Up and Wall-E, but it is fueled by a very funny cast and a fun super hero story that the whole family will enjoy.

When To Watch Rating: Finding Your Inner Child

Now Playing in Theaters

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)

Butch and Sundance are the two leaders of the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang. Butch is all ideas, Sundance is all action and skill. The west is becoming civilized and when Butch and Sundance rob a train once too often, a special posse begins trailing them no matter where they run.

There really isnt alot to review when it comes to a movie starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford, that won 4 academy awards and was nominated for 7 total. It was a movie that I loved as a kid and is still one of my favorite westerns. The only reason I review it is in case some unlucky person has yet to watch it yet.

It has a little bit of everything it seems. comedy, action, romance and suspense throughout the movie. The dynamic between Redford and Newman is fantastic whether they are fighting with each other, making jokes before jumping off cliffs or in the middle of a shootout.

The film is also does things differently than most other films would. The film is split up into two segments that is split by pictures that moves the story from America to Bolivia. They also use "pop" music for the montage sequences which was sort of surprising to hear when I watched it again but I think it works very well.

The movie was shot by Conrad Hall so it looks beautiful and it goes in and out of a sepia color that gives a good old west feeling to the movie.

The end of the movie is classic, all the way up to the very last line the movie keeps you laughing and guessing what is going to happen next.

When to Watch Rating: NOW

Available on Netflix Instant View

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Holy Rollers (2010)

In Brooklyn, a youth from an Orthodox Jewish community is lured into becoming an Ecstasy dealer by his pal who has ties to an Israel drug cartel.

Justin Bartha (The Hangover) and Michael Cer.......uh I mean Jesse Eisenberg star in Holy Rollers. Jesse Eisenberg really stands out for once for not being the quite awkward guy who wants the girl. He does start out the quite awkward Jew who wants the girl, but this time his character actually progresses into something much more. Justin Bartha was the only actor in The Hangover that didn't have a stand out role, so I was interested to see how he would do in a leading role. It would be nice to see a little more from him, especially in this type of role, but I think his performance was still good.

The movie started very slow and it was hard to keep my attention. Jesse's character is worried about what career he is going to be given and if he will be allowed to marry the girl he wants to. He has a strong business sense, but that doesn't help him in his fathers business. Once he finds out he can't marry the girl he wants he blames it on his families social status. Justin Bartha's character then brings him along to make extra money bringing "medicine" back from Europe. All of this seems to go very slow and is boring, it is not until Jesse finds out that he is actually smuggling ecstasy that the movie starts to get good.

The movie is very bland, probably intentionally in the beginning while in the Jewish community, but as it picks up and they are in Europe and Jesse's character is getting partying, drinking, and taking drugs for the first time that the movie starts to take a cool style. The movies pace picks up and Jesse's character development going from a quiet Jewish boy who is too awkward to talk to girls, to a drug smuggler who is making business deals and getting more Orthodox Jewish kids involved is fun to watch.

The movie opens up your eyes to how some kids in these communities grow up and how their decisions are made for them. How every decision that they make is scrutinized by the community. It is also a pretty crazy true story about how the Jewish kids were not ever searched by airport security because no one would think that they would be doing anything wrong.

Unfortunately being based on a true story it has kind of an abrupt ending. The movie is just picking up to a great climax and then two minutes later its over it seems. It's a good thing if that is how the real story happened, but it does feel like a let down to the audience. The movie is fairly short anyways so the abrupt ending feels like there could have been more to enjoy.

When to Watch Rating: Indie Film Mood

Available on Netflix Instant View

Paranormal Activity 2 (2010)

After experiencing what they think are a series of "break-ins", a family sets up security cameras around their home, only to realize that the events unfolding before them are more sinister than they seem.

I am not a big fan of these type of movies. I did not see the first movie, and don't really find it worth the money to go to a theater to just be scared. That being said, if you are the type of person who likes to be scared this would be a good movie for you. The way the movie is shot using the "security" cameras and the occasional shots from the hand held camera add alot of anticipation, because at any point anything can happen. You aren't warned by any creepy music or seeing the villain sneaking up on someone.

The story itself is not that exciting, but it is cool that it ties into the first movie (or so I'm told), and is not just another random security camera movie that is trying to just make money off the first movies success. The biggest problem I have with the story besides all of the boring filler that takes up 3/4 of this movie is when things start to go crazy and the family watches it on the security footage they still stay in this same place and don't really take any action. I know this there wouldn't be a movie if they did not do it this way, but its hard to believe a movie that is being shot like real archival footage if the people take it unrealistically. I'm not sure I know anyone that would stay in a house after watching footage of the things that are happening to these people.

With a 3 million dollar budget it has already made over 40 million dollars, which goes to show that you don't have to have a high budget movie to scare and entertain people.

The acting in the movie is pretty bad, but at the same time, you aren't watching this movie to see good acting or to see a great story. You are there to be scared, and Paranormal Acticity 2 has quite a few jump out of your seat moments that come out of nowhere that will leave you satisfied.

When to Watch Rating: Indie Film Mood

Now Playing in Theaters

Pirate Radio (2009)

A period comedy about an illegal radio station in the North Sea in the 1960s.

Carl is sent by his mother to live on a pirate radio ship that broadcasts rock n' roll to Great Britain.  On board he meets a wide range of characters who all bring something new to the table. Together they all live life with no regrets, just trying to bring rock n' roll to Britain. Meanwhile the British government is trying to find ways to make these radio boats illegal.

One of the biggest problems with this movie is it doesn't really feel like there is much of a story. While on the boat it seems like one big party, sex, drugs and music. There is the occasional issues between the people on the boat but it is usually solved very quickly, in a funny way. Life for them is all about having the best times of their life. Then we see the one member of the British government who only cares about shutting them down no matter what he has to do. We rarely see anything that he does have an impact on them until the very end of the movie, which really seemed to make them feel like an afterthought.

The movie is fueled by yet another great performance by Philip Seymour Hoffman, one of my favorite actors. Even though he is not the main actor in the movie I think he still steals the spotlight in the scenes he is in. Rhys Ifans and Bill Nighy both put in notable performances. This movie is very character driven, the story itself would be nothing without the interesting, fun characters. One bad performance could have ruined this movie, but I thought the movie was cast very well and it is the highlight of the film.

A movie about pirate radio in the 60's needs a good soundtrack, and Pirate Radio did not disappoint, this was the other thing that stood out baout this movie besides the acting. The movie features a wide selection of music, with bands including Cat Stevens, Rolling Stones, Neil Young, The Box Tops, The Yardbirds, The Kinks, The Hollies, Smokey Robinson, The Seekers, and Leonard Cohen.

Overall it was a fun movie, the story has its issues and I'm not sure how much I liked the ending, but it was worth it with a solid cast and great music.

When To Watch Rating: Indie Film Mood

Available on DVD on Blu-Ray

Saturday, October 23, 2010

More Than a Game (2008)

This documentary follows NBA superstar LeBron James and four of his talented teammates through the trials and tribulations of high school basketball in Ohio and James' journey to fame.

Almost everyone know who LeBron James is, but most people don't know how he got to be where he is today. LeBron really became famous when he attempted to forfeit his senior year of high school and go to the NBA draft after his junior season. After he was denied by the NBA, he returned for his senior season, which was one of the most anticipated seasons by any high school player ever.  It was not only because LeBron James was supposed to be the next Michael Jordan, but the high school team that he played for was in contention for the national championship.

This documentary show how these four friends started playing basketball together as kids, coached by one of the kids dads. It follows them as they go on to play in high school together, instantly transforming their school into a powerhouse.

The documentary does a good job at bringing you into the lives of these kids. How they got into the sport and what their friendship meant to each other. It shows how they had to deal with adversity, especially LeBron becoming famous. It really shows how much these kids valued each others friendships, and always wanted to play together. It also helps you understand why LeBron James decided to change teams this season to play with his friends.

The movie is a mixture of interviews, still photos and archival footage. A lot of times this can make for a very boring movie, but the still images are all done a very cool way that really make the photos seem more like videos and keep you entertained. It is also very fun to see the archival footage of LeBron and his teammates as young middle school kids.

The only problems it seemed with this documentary is it seems to go back over certain story points to many times. They talk about how Dru Joyce III was to small to play basketball and was always overlooked. Then 10 minutes later they go over the same thing, it seems very redundant, and it happens multiple times in the movie.

This is a must see for sports fans, and I believe if you are a fan of documentaries you may also become a fan of More Than a Game.

When to Watch Rating: Need for Entertainment

Available on Netflix Instant View

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Jackass 3D (2010)

There really isn't that much to say about Jackass 3D. The only questions that can be answered are is it funny? Is it worth to see it in 3D? How crazy are the stunts? Should I take a girl?

This is coming from a big Jackass fan, I have enjoyed all of their previous films and still watch the old episodes when they play on MTV, so I may be to much of a fan. $50 million opening weekend means they must be doing something good though.

Quesiton: Is it funny?
Answer: Jet airplanes, 10 ft deep snake pits, midget fights, flying port-o-potties and taser filled obstacle courses. If that doesn't answer it for you then probably not.

Question: Is it worth it in 3D?
Answer: Jackass 3D was filmed using the same technology as yes.

Question: How crazy are the stunts?
Answer: See question one. There is a variety that will keep you guessing what your going to see next.

Question: Should I take a girl?
Answer: If the girl is ok with slow motion 3D male nudity, slow motion 3D poop and guys getting hurt a lot then yes. Otherwise you may need to cover her eyes a little bit.

It may not be as funny as Jackass 2, but it is very close and with the 3D it may be the best movie of the series. Jackass 3D is a fun, hilarious movie that will keep you laughing the entire time and is well worth the $200 it takes to go to a 3D movie.

When To Watch Rating: Drunken Guys Night

Now Playing in Theaters

The Blind Side (2009)

The story of Michael Oher, a homeless and traumatized boy who became an All American football player and first round NFL draft pick with the help of a caring woman and her family. 

You would think a movie that makes $255 million, wins the award for best actress and is nominated for best picture would be a lock to be a good movie. Not so fast. Can you argue though with a movie that did so well with audiences and critics? 
If this movie was not based on a true story it would seem like your typical kids Disney movie. Person made for sport, but has (add problem). Person gets a chance to succeed, but needs to learn to play. Person gets coached by small child. Person almost instantly becomes great. Person has problem that could ruin everything. Person triumphs. So what makes this movie any different.

Sandra Bullock is a highlight to the movie, wouldn't cross my mind for an award, but the academy was set on giving her an award. You can't blame her for some of the writing that makes her character seem way to over the top. 

The story of Michael Oher is incredible, but oddly enough happens quite often. Check out this interesting article on black athletes that come from bad homes and go on to live with white families, and excel in sports.

So I want to know how a movie that cinematically falls very short, only has one strong performance and no climax can do so good. I have a theory that also is some aspects goes along with the success of the 2009 best picture winner Slumdog Millionaire and 2010 nominee Precious. People see these situations that people are stuck in, coming from broken homes where their mothers throw their babies on the couch like a football, or 2 young boys watch their mother die and have to survive in the slums of India. Their reactions are "I can't believe people actually go through this, this movie really blew my mind." (Actual reaction I have heard) That alone seems to give movies some merit on being a great movie, regardless if the story is true or if the movie was made well.

This seems to be the effect that The Blind Side had on people, and with the "true story" tagged on,  it was sure to succeed. This seems to me the only way this movie could have done so well, if it weren't for that factor you could place it right up there with movies like The Rookie. Interesting true story, nothing more.

Available on DVD

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

GhettoPhysics: Will the Real Pimps and Hos Please Stand Up? (2010)

Ghetto Physics is about the affiliation between the pimp and the ho and how that relationship can be extrapolated into politics, the economy, and even one’s everyday encounters.

Read review at Making the Movie - Ghetto Physics Review. Jeff P (writer for the website is the guest reviewer, hopefully he will also do some reviews for ThinkSplosion.

When to Watch Rating: While Plunging Your Head in Boiling Water (From what it sounds like)

Now playing in select theaters

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Let The Right One In (2008)

Oscar, an overlooked and bullied boy, finds love and revenge through Eli, a beautiful but peculiar girl who turns out to be a vampire.

If you have read the review for Let Me In, then you already know my feelings about the two movies. This was one of my favorite movies of 2008, and one of my favorite vampire movies of all time. Also one of my favorite foreign films, the movie is Swedish.

The film is shot very beautifully, from the opening shot of snow falling in the black of night you know what this movie is going to look excellent. They take advantage of shooting in Sweden, and even though most of the movie is at night you still get some beautiful shots of the woods in winter.

Sometimes it is hard to really judge the acting of foreign films actors, because you are to busy reading the subtitles to be able to focus on the character. This may be true in my case for this movie, but I think that it was excellently cast and Kåre Hedebrant and Lina Leandersson are fantastic.

The biggest complaint I have received about this movie is how slow it is.  It definitely has the the pacing of a foreign film and I think that it adds to the movie. Those who are looking for an action packed vampire movie will not get that, but you will get a great movie that focuses on the relationship of these two children build.

If you have to choose between Let The Right One In or Let Me In, go with the original. I can't find one thing in that is better with the new one. The best thing to do though is watch them both and find out for yourself which one you like better.

When To Watch Rating: NOW

Available on Netflix Instant View

Saturday, October 9, 2010

The Social Network (2010)

A story about the founders of the social-networking website, Facebook.

A sharp script, great music and David Fincher being David Fincher makes for one of the best movies so far this year. As usual I will let a better writer do a good review.

Check out Making the Movie - The Social Network Movie Review

When To Watch Rating: Now

Now Playing in Theaters

Cool Runnings (1993)


Based on the true story of the First Jamaican bobsled team trying to make it to the winter Olympics. 

This was one of my favorite movies as a kid so I decided to watch it to see why I liked it so much. Its a goofy comedy about Jamaican track stars that lose there chance at the summer olympics so they decide to start a bobsled team to compete in the winter olympics. The enroll the help of Irving Blitzer (John Candy), a former olympic bobsledder who had his medals taken away for cheating.

The comedy in this movie is fueled by Sanka (Doug E. Doug) who is the only one of the group who is not a sprinter. He is the only one of the group that doesn't go through some personal transformation of the group, he is there only to bring the jokes.  These 4 have to conquer the cold, learn to run on ice and deal with all of the bobsledding purists who dont believe that they should be there.

The movie is based on a true story, but really is only true on about two points. The coach originally wanted sprinters but got no interest from the countries best. They did borrow a bobsled from the USA, and they did crash in their final run, after crashing they did walk their sled to the finish line (not on their shoulders). Thats about as close it comes to being true, they do use actual footage from the crash which is cool.

This is your basic Disney kids movie, goofy villains, cheap jokes and a happy ending (sort of). I can see how I would of liked it so much as a kid, but its not really as fun for adults.

When To Watch Rating: Finding Your Inner Child

Available on DVD

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Let Me In (2010)

A bullied young boy befriends a young female vampire who lives in secrecy with her guardian.

When I heard that they were remaking one of my favorite movies of 2008, Let The Right One In,  I was very upset. Not only that they were remaking the foreign film which I thought was already excellent, but that they were doing in 2 years later. I was also worried about the director choice, Matt Reeves, who was the director of Cloverfield. The cast was one thing that did excite me, Kodi Smit-McPhee was excellent in The Road and Chloe Moretz was great in Kickass.

The best comparison for these two movies I can think of is Let Me In is a color by numbers version of Let The Right One In. Imagine getting a color by numbers version of the Mona Lisa, you are told what colors to go where to make it look as good as the original, but many factors would hurt it. Are the colors exactly the same, did you color over the line, did you try to make parts original? In the end of it all though it really never had a chance to be as good as the original but it could be very good.

They decided to keep many of the same dialogue and scenes which was very nice to see, if it's not broke, then why fix it? Other things that they decided to add I thought worked really well. They made Abby's guardian more of a villain when he goes to find blood for Abby. They also put more into the story about Abby's relationship with the guardian and who he really was. It may be pushed on you a little much, the less you have to keep pushing it on an audience seems to be better.

The changes were also for the worse in this movie. Making Abby turn into a monster I think was a huge mistake, the relationship she has with Owen is build on them both needing friends because they are outcasts. Turning her into a monster would really change that dynamic. Also the police man who is not in the original, is neither made into a good guy or a villain so in the end you don't know how to feel about him, whats the point of having him be such a big character if you aren't going to develop him. I think Matt Reeves really failed to understand the mindset of some of these characters in the original or just decided to change it, which was a bad idea.

In a world where Let The Right One In doesn't exist, Let Me In would a good film. It would be different than anything that we have seen in the vampire genre. Unfortunately there is a better version of this film that has a better script, much better cinematography, quality acting and is original.

When To Watch Rating: Need for Entertainment

Now Playing in Theaters