RIVER OF NO RETURN [1954] movie review

July 28, 2013

Though more of an adventure movie set in the old west, there is enough classic western in RIVER OF NO RETURN [1954] to make it yet another hidden gem find thanks to Netflix (about the only thing Netflix is useful for these days). [Read more]

RONIN [1998] movie review

July 27, 2013

RONIN [1998] is a very rare movie. It is an action movie completely devoid of gimmicks, one liners and preposterous stunts. It is almost completely humorless. This is a serious movie about serious criminal operatives hired to retrieve a case at all costs. [Read more]

OBLIVION [2013] movie review

July 26, 2013

I am not usually good at predicting plot twists in movies, mostly because I just like the story to take me along and try not to analyze things too much while watching, but in OBLIVION [2013] I pretty much was able to guess what the twists were in the first two thirds of the movie, but the final third had a couple of surprises, which I actually did not like and greatly reduced what the movie could have been. [Read more]

EXISTENZ [1999] movie review

July 20, 2013

Sometimes a movie sticks in my mind for years because of the title alone. EXISTENZ [1999] is one of those movies and I finally watched it this evening, out of the blue. For a movie with such a high tech plot related to playing games you actually physically jack into and play virtual reality style, the movie itself looks extremely analog and organic. This was a surprise to me as I expected lots of video game looking scenes. Actually, the game play scenes looked just like live action, making it all the more disconcerting. [Read more]

DINER [1982] movie review

July 19, 2013

They were talking about DINER [1982] on the Dan Patrick Show sports podcast this week, which motivated me to seek out the movie and see if it really might have been a Seinfeld influence. I could definitely see how the dialogue and banter of a group of friends hanging out in a diner in this 1982 movie could seem like a preview for the Seinfeld show ten years later. Much like that show, DINER is really a movie about nothing, just old friends in their early 20s hanging out night after night messing around.

I thought of how the current generation, the Millennials, is being criticized for doing nothing, just wasting their lives living at home with their parents, but as depicted in DINER kids in 1959 could have been ripped for the same thing, or at least the 6 guys in the story. The cast though they may not look immediately familiar, are mostly all familiar names to this day: Kevin Bacon, Mickey Rourke (almost unrecognizable), Steve Guttenberg, Paul Reiser. It is also the directorial debut of Barry Levinson.

This is not a movie that makes men look good, at all, especially in how they perceive and value women, as in, there seems to be no need for women at all except for an occasional “pop.” Only one character, Billy, seems to sincerely enjoy the company of the girl he is sweet on, and she wants only to be friends despite her possibly being pregnant.

What story there is revolves very loosely on Guttenberg’s character getting married. Why in the world is he doing it, even he cannot answer. In fact he is making his fiance pass a super hard NFL trivia contest, and if she fails, the wedding is off! What woman would agree to that??

The movie is mostly a downer, though I guess it ends in a slight upbeat nature. I did not know it would be set in 1959 either, I was expecting an 80s timeline, so it took some adjusting, but then the downer nature of the movie overall made the few funny lines hard to laugh at. DINER is the kind of movie I am kind of glad I watched, but I would never want to watch it again.

FAST & FURIOUS 6 [2013] movie review

July 6, 2013

“Ride or die” is their mantra.  They sure lived up to that in FAST & FURIOUS 6 [2013] delivering what fans of the franchise, like myself, had long been waiting for, a bigtime sequel with actual car racing in it that kicked ass.  The first FF was a very good action movie for car fans, the second was a disaster and amazingly did not kill the franchise, the third was very good, but stands outside the lore of the rest of the series, the fourth was all over the place and the fifth forgot about the cars.  FURIOUS 6 gets it all right, as long as you can accept the preposterous and just go along for the ride. [Read more]

BREWSTER’S MILLIONS [1985] movie review

July 4, 2013

One movie that I saw as a kid that has stuck in my mind more than most others is BREWSTER’S MILLIONS [1985], which I only rewatched today. I do not mean I can remember exactly how the story went, but I could remember three things very distinctly from it all these years later. [Read more]