Passengers (***) starts off as a nice trip

Just when it begins to get interesting, we are reminded that test audiences want to see point A go to point B rather than drifting off into infinity.

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X-Men Apocalypse (**): Where do we go from here?

Question 26. Is this the movie where acting goes to die?

The Hunger Games 4, Mockingjay 2 (***) is grim and joyless

So if you are looking for things to blow up, expectant surprises to pop out or just plain misery to abound, you may like this film. If you want the same thing, but you want your daughter to feel like she can be a hero, better stick to The Force Awakens.

X-Men: Days of Future Passed / The Rogue Cut: We can go anywhere from here

The Rogue Cut is like the bloom of a rose the day after you thought it had reached maturity. Instead of beginning to wilt, it flows even more thoroughly from its core, giving the bloom a depth and resonance it never had previously. The interesting thing about it though, is that it's not only or even primarily because of the sequence of Anna Paquin scenes that this version of X-Men succeeds.

The Hunger Games 3: Mockingjay 1 (***)

Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1 - 2014 Director Francis Lawrence Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Stanley Tucci, Donald Sutherland, Natalie Dormer, Sam Clafin, Jena Malone Screenplay by Danny Strong, Peter Craig based on the book by Suzanne Collins At this point we've all become accepting of the process of dragging out books into multiple movies. … Continue reading The Hunger Games 3: Mockingjay 1 (***)

American Hustle: Like flowers, but with garbage

American Hustle - 2013 Director David O. Russell Starring Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Jennifer Lawrence Screenplay Eric Warren Singer and Russell There is a feeling of barely restrained whimsy in the events of American Hustle.  Instead of being the kind of film that aspires to be truthful while embellishing the facts, Russell and co-writer Singer make the … Continue reading American Hustle: Like flowers, but with garbage

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (***1/2) more hunger, more games

  The Hunger Games: Catching Fire - 2013 Director Francis Lawrence Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Lenny Kravitz, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Jeffrey Wright, Stanley Tucci, Sam Claflin, Jena Malone, Donald Sutherland Screenplay Simon Beaufoy, Michael deBruyn based on the book by Suzanne Collins After struggling through the first book of the series, The Hunger Games, I was not looking forward to the movie … Continue reading The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (***1/2) more hunger, more games

Silver Linings Playbook: Who says crazy can’t be funny?

Silver Linings Playbook - 2012 Written and Directed by David O. Russell Starring Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert DeNiro, Jacki Weaver, Chris Tucker, Julia Stiles, Anupam Kher, Shea Wigham, John Ortiz, Brea Bree Pat: How old are you? Tiffany: Old enough to have a marriage end and not wind up in a mental hospital. I can't be … Continue reading Silver Linings Playbook: Who says crazy can’t be funny?

I Don’t Have A Vote: Cool Papa E thinks the 85th Oscars Suck

I have to admit it.  Once I found out it wasn't happening, I wasn't interested,  The list of nominees arrived on January 10 and Samuel L. Jackson's name was not among them.  There is no good reason for it, either.  Within the list of nominees, even the guy from his own movie, Christoph Waltz, didn't … Continue reading I Don’t Have A Vote: Cool Papa E thinks the 85th Oscars Suck

The House at the End of the Street is not scary…it’s just Canadian

House at the End of the Street - 2012 Director Mark Tonderai Starring Jennifer Lawrence, Elisabeth Shue, Max Thieriot, Gil Bellows Screenplay David Louka, Jonathan Mostow Why do we go back to films like this?  It's finished by the time you've reached the second act.  By finished, I mean clearly obvious what is going to happen.  From that … Continue reading The House at the End of the Street is not scary…it’s just Canadian