KevinRiley

Non-Stop:

Another example of an interesting premise / story that has no possible plausible ending so anything and everything goes. Red Herrings galore. All go no where. Everyone does the stupid thing. Every character is a cliché.

Dialogue/Writing is atrocious. Acting was fine. Julianne Moore is sexy as always.

I didn't guess the hijacker but there is no crime in that - you might as well throw a dart at a dartboard. I enjoyed it more than I thought. It was surprisingly suspenseful.

5/10

KevinRiley

Under The Skin:

I read the book but enjoyed the movie more. It was cleaner and not bogged down in Alien characters that added nothing to the story or long explanations on how the bodies were handled once they were captured.

Scarlett Johansson was terrific. Her character was more consistent than the one in the book and I cared for her more. She was also breathtakingly beautiful. Getting to see her naked over and over and over again, didn't hurt my enjoyment of this film.

The writing and direction was excellent. After reading the book, I had no clue how it would translate to the big screen. Simplifying everything went a long way in that respect. Seeing the male characters, slowly, excitedly (is that a word?), being pulled into the black oil quick sand by SJ's Siren, was very effective.

Last point: Unlike the book, there is a character with a facial deformity. It turns out the actor has that deformity and it wasn't make-up. As someone whose heart bleeds for people with that affliction, I was touched by the character (it was very real) and it left me with a knot in my stomach - in a good way.

Really liked the movie. 8/10

KevinRiley

Superbad :

Yikes! I laughed during this movie... a lot! Nothing memorable, though. Well, except for Aviva Baumann, who took my breath away. I am dying to see her in something else.

Am I the one who finds Jonah Hill painful to watch?

6.5/10

KevinRiley

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes :

I was a little disappointed. Some nitpicking from me...

First, it was too long.

Second, the human characters were too one dimensional. Either good or bad. Nothing interesting in between.

Last, there was a lack of human causalities. It was almost as if the film makers didn't want to alienate the watchers and kept the (human) body count low - while emphasizing the monkey deaths.

Having said all that, I did enjoy it. It was a visual feast. The 3D effects took my breath away on more than a few occasions. The final scenes in the tower were amazing. As someone who is scared of heights, it left me unnerved, scared and jumpy.

Also, the ape characters were interesting. I just hope they become darker / meaner in future sequels.

Overall, I enjoyed it but was left asking one question... Where was Urko?!?!?!? I miss him.

7.5 / 10

KevinRiley

Crawlspace:

Just in case I forgot why I hate (science)fiction, I rented Crawlspace.

The film is an Australian mix of the TV show Helix and the movie Aliens. The premise is interesting enough but, like so much science fiction, it explains everything away with a farfetched contrived plot, over the top acting and poor writing.

Did it scare me? A few times, yes. Did it pull me in? Again, at times. Is it enough to recommend? Not by me.

4 / 10

KevinRiley

Whitewash:

Interesting character study about mental illness.

Thomas Haden Church plays a man slowly on the path to insanity in Northern Quebec. Then, after doing the right thing, he meets another man who speeds up the process. Could almost be described as "Unabomber Légère".

Strong performance by Church and Marc Labrèche. Worth your time but you need to give it a chance to simmer.

7.5/10

KevinRiley

The most shameful review I have ever written...

Bad Grandpa:

It was rude, crude, disgusting and awful... but I laughed HARD for 90 minutes. At one point I buckled over in laughter. I feel deeply ashamed.

7 / 10

KevinRiley

The Iceman:

In a world full of movies that are too long, this movie should have been longer. While I watched, I kept thinking what an amazing movie Martin Scorsese could have made with this story. However, after a night of reflection, I realized that the reason it was so short was, perhaps, there was nothing more to say.

The movie is about a mob hitman. He is mean, hurtful and has no soul. The movie played up his love for his family but, if I recall (in the documentary), he was no saint in that area either.

Michael Shannon was amazing. Ray Liotta was terrific. Winona Ryder was, well, there. I have to ask... what the hell was David Schwimmer doing in that movie (he was nothing more than a constant distraction)?

At the end of the day, the production, direction and writing were weak and they let down the lead actor who put everything into what should have been a much better movie.

Nothing wrong with it but unless you have 2 hours to kill, stick with the documentary.

6.5 / 10

KevinRiley

Bernie :

I am not sure if I have ever used the word "delightful" to describe a movie but this movie was exactly that. I have never been a fan of Jack Black but he was great. Shirley Maclaine was downright scary at times (in a wonderful role) and Matthew McConaughey was terrific. The direction was tight. The writing, smart. I can't think of a negative things to say about this movie.

Unfortunately, I don't have the courage to give it a 9 out of 10 - but I'm not sure why.

8.5 / 10

KevinRiley

Oculus :

Saw Oculus this evening and I'm not sure what to make of it. On so many levels, it was average. The acting. The direction. The tension. It was slow with little character development. Having said all that, it did scare me. And, I wasn't the only one. The 200 people in the theatre seemed riveted (too strong a word) to their seats. No one talked. No one left to go the bathroom. So Mr. Flanagan must have done something right.

Karen Gillan is hot - although I am not sure if she is a good actress, given the material. Two words... "Nice Lips".

7 out of 10

KevinRiley

In Fear:

Three things struck me while watching "In Fear"...

First, how much Tom looks like Jonathan Toews and how much Max looks like Tobey McGuire.

Second, how much this film reminds me of “The Hitcher”.

Third, how bad the second half of the film is compared to the first.

The film starts off well. A young couple go away for the weekend. They get lost. They run low on gas. It gets dark and scary. Yes, the two do stupid things (like run the car when they don’t need to, leave the doors unlocked, leave the keys in the ignition and walk away when it is unsafe) but no one is quite as stupid as horror film characters so I am willing to buy in. Then we meet Max. He comes out of nowhere with a backpack full of red herrings and things go downhill fast.

One (silly) scene stands out: Tom gets angry at Max. He leaves the car and paces in a heavy rain. Tom returns, after 2 or 3 minutes, completely dry. Not a drop on him. I stopped caring at that point.

The first half rates an 8. The second a 3. Add and divide by 2.

5.5 / 10

KevinRiley

Anchorman 2 : The Legend Continues...

Movie was no better or worse than the prequel. Funny but no funnier than 2 hours of Married With Children reruns - pre Ted McGinley. A waste of 2 hours but I didn't feel cheated afterwards. It was what is was.

James Marsden was very good. Christina Applegate looks sooooooooo old.

5 / 10

TravelPatB

Should we call you Siskel or Ebert?

KevinRiley

Quote from: "TravelPatB"
Should we call you Siskel or Ebert?
Given I am Irish Catholic...  Ebert.  :)

KevinRiley

The Wolf of Wall Street:

Always love Martin Scorsese films but this one was lacking. There are a bunch of wonderful parts - including the scene where LDC crawls into his car after taking too many drugs. But the whole doesn't add up to the sum of its parts.

I also believe Belfort exaggerated much of what happened and the film glamorizes what an awful person he was. At the end of the day, he is nothing but a con man.

The movie, like the book, was too long, too self important and made me want to take a shower.

7 / 10

P.S. Margot Robbie took my breath away. What a beautiful young lady!
 


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