Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Short Reviews

Since I am way behind on the pitiful number of movies I have seen this year, here are some short reviews for them.

Monsters University
If I were to retitle this movie, it would be called Bland... except for because that pretty much sums up the movie.  The monster designs are fairly bland, except for quasi-villain Dean Hardscrabble.  The plot is fairly cliche, except for an honest surprise at the end.  The laughter is plain and unoffensive, except for one or two jokes that are belly-bursters.  Considering that this is a prequel to one of Pixar's best movies, I had high hopes for it.  But it was not to be.  The film isn't bad by a longshot, but you are better off watching Monsters, Inc. for a second, third, fourth, and hundredth time.  5.5 out of 10

The Heat
A formulaic buddy-cop action-comedy done right.  Both actresses knock it out of the park and breathe life into the well-known tropes that dominate this genre.  I especially appreciate that they didn't try to do too much with it:  Both are after the same bad guy, they team up, funny stuff happens, they catch the head baddie.  And I only stopped laughing for one scene (the impromptu tracheotomy scene felt like it came from a different movie and was completely unnecessary), and the movie moved along at a quick pace.  Melissa McCarthy is easily best in show, though Sandra Bullock and Michael McDonald also impress.  8.0 out of 10

This Is The End
Hilarious movie.  Its an end-of-the-world movie where the people left behind are not very nice people, and it builds all the humor around that fact.  After killing off a large chunk of people we follow the main 6 guys (James Franco, Seth Rogen, Craig Robinson, Jonah Hill, Danny McBride, and Jay Baruchel all playing fictional versions of themselves) as they try to navigate the Apocalypse.  All are hilarious, with best in show honors going to Robinson.  The humor is not for everyone (very crude at some points) and can very easily offend someone who doesn't know what they are going into.  With those warnings, however, you should enjoy yourself.  8.0 out of 10

Warm Bodies
A surprisingly sweet film.  The first of two PG-13 zombie flicks, this one is the one you should see (not that other piece of shit) since it actually shows a bit of the aftermath of a zombie attack (its an actual plot point!) while still being 'safe' enough for the rating.  An undead take on Romeo and Juliet, (with a happier ending, natch) this movie features strong performances, sly humor, and a quick pace.  Analeigh Tipton gives the best performance in the movie, but Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer, and Rob Corddry are also very good.  The Midnight Max review suggests that Palmer should be getting more of Kristen Stewart's roles, and I think there is some legitimacy to the statement.  Recommended.  7.0 out of 10

John Dies at the End
A weird movie that will most likely end up as a cult classic.  It follows Chase Williamson as David Wong and Rob Mayes as the titular John as all sorts of strange things start happening to them after coming into contact with 'soy sauce' - a drug that allows the user to see things that normally cannot be perceived.  The humor is so deadpan that at some points I think the jokes might be missed, but the film adapts the book rather well.  Williamson is fairly solid as the lead, with Mayes providing solid support.  Paul Giamatti is a journalist interviewing David Wong about what he went through, and while he has fun with the role, other character actors might have been better choices (although Giamatti's involvement might have been what got the movie made in the first place).  Not for everyone, but well worth checking out.  7.0 out of 10.

1 comment:

Travis Callaway said...

Thanks for the reference. I will respectfully disagree with your appraisal of Tipton in "Warm Bodies", though. I felt she simply didn't have the screen-time or dialogue to even register as "support"- her involvement appeared to be more of an extended cameo in nature.

I loved "This Is The End" and liked "The Heat"- "...End" should rightfully take it's place amongst the ever-growing "Movies For Guys" list (hence the lack of appreciation from most females) while "The Heat" is obviously brimming with Girl Power as an intended chick flick (no, there's nothing wrong with any of that).