“War Dogs”, Making Easy Cash the Hard Way

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Billed as a comedy with drama and based on a true story, War Dogs takes you into the world of selling guns during wartime. The film delves into profit making from the military and the risks the gun sellers take for chances of making millions. While a lot of Hollywood goes into the film, it does happen and it did happen this way, mostly. What adds high entertainment value to the movie comes from the acting by two of America’s better actors, Oscar nominated Jonah Hill and rising star Miles Teller. Read more

“The Girlfriend Experience”, Earning a Living on the Side

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The first season for The Girlfriend Experience on STARZ has now been released on Blu-ray/DVD and very good acting, direction and filming has made it worth watching. If you have not seen the series or would like to relive it, then pick up a copy today where you purchase videos. The drama has a lot of twists, “pushes the envelope” in several episodes and intrigue even in its most provocative and twisted season finale. Read more

“Captain Fantastic” Dealing with Culture Clash

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Giving probably his best performance in many years, Viggo Mortenson makes Captain Fantastic up-close and personal. And the acting, direction and cinematography all come together in this heartfelt film about a strong-willed family. However, the storyline takes on a dark tone concerning todays’ social and religious beliefs that tends to provide its own agenda. While it’s not uncommon for films to add critical scenes, this one becomes obsessive with it. Read more

“Nerve”, It’s a Game You Dare Not Play

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Targeted at teens the movie Nerve sets up a very dangerous game that involves taking huge chances and cheating death. The film has adequate acting and able direction, but the storyline does have elements of the impossible. While it’s just a movie to create thrills and suspense, it’s kind of fun to watch, especially the risky scenes involving the dares. Read more

“Hunt for the Wilderpeople” a Comedy About Growing Up

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The oddball film Hunt for the Wilderpeople has a couple of attributes that make it very special. First, it has a story that charms, captivates and compels viewers to watch a young boy come of age in a strange environment under the most unusual circumstances. Second, the perfect cast treats the audience with performances that work their way into your heart and never let go. If you enjoy movies that fascinate with characters changing for better or worse, than this is your cup of Zealong tea. Read more

“One More Time”, a Walken Surprise

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Stepping back into the limelight, Christopher Walken gives one of his best performances in quite a while in One More Time now on DVD. He works his character well and even belts out a few tunes. But, the stellar actor’s performance cannot hold the audience alone. The losing grace comes from uneven direction and a hackneyed script lowering the entertainment value a couple of grades. If you’re a Walken fan however, this one’s for you. Read more

“Popstar: Never Stop, Never Stopping”, a Rap Star on the Rocks

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Continuing with a list of goofball films the trio of writers called ‘Lonely Island’ Andy Samberg, Jorma Taccone, and Akiva Schaffer make Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping, a mockumentary style movie that may look a bit like one famous pop star who made it big. But it’s just another project for their memory chest. You may remember Hot Rod and The Watch or maybe not, well anyway they also collaborated on the two so-so comedies. And both films barely made a pay day for the big talent that were in them. Now comes another shot at trying to build an audience and box office, but from the looks of Popstar they should hunker down for the long haul. Read more

“The Lobster”, a Bizarre Story About Love

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Working with excellent talent and intrusive camera work director Yorgos Lanthimos brings a bizarre film to the screen. The Lobster can be the perfect indie for a select audience of art film lovers that want to be drawn into a dark place for two hours while being entertained by the dreary storyline and the lifeless characters on the screen. For this group the movie’s a winner. The Lobster is motion picture art at its most absurd, even more so than the morose and brooding Melancholia or Under the Skin. If you want a mind bending experience, then this little gem is for you. That said, I did applaud Under the Skin for its alien tale about a hooker who gathers humans for disturbing reasons. Read more

“Hard Sell”, Flashing for Dollars

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Taking a few pages out of scripts of the 70’s and 80’s the movie Hard Sell opens in theaters this weekend. It’s a fun romp that’s aimed straight at teens to mid-twenties, but more for those who remember films like Weird Science, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and many cool films by John Hughes. This low budget attempt however, serves more as a coming out for rising talent rather than an energetic comedy/melodrama. It does have a few words of wisdom attached that may hit home with our modern day youth, but not much more. Read more

“Regression”, a Cat-and-Mouse Psychological Thriller

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The psychological thriller Regression, now on DVD, delves into devil worshiping. It challenges the intellect to unravel the mystery, obtain evidence and solve the real crime behind it all. Writer and director Alejandro Amenábar leads his audience into the center of suspense as a cat-and-mouse game gets played out in a small town that’s superstition laden and suspicious of everything going on around it. Read more

“Captain America: Civil War”, the Battle’s Just Begun

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Probably one of the most dramatic Avengers film, Captain America: Civil War comes on the heels of another drama by a different comic book heroes Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. They both have a similar theme and all the special effects in the world to back it up. But, as the two films go, Captain America wins out by far. There’s so much CGI in this film that it’s very hard to tell between reality and animated fantasy. Actually your mind will be so boggled that there’s no time to think about anything except who’s the next Marvel superhero to appear in the film. With this Captain America sequel, it’s time to release more Avengers into the fray with more surprises that one can handle. Read more

“Emelie”, the Sinister Sitter

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Cunning and sinister the film Emelie comes to home video on DVD and Blu-ray. The film increases the level of emotion, fear, and chills as the haunting plot moves from one unconscionable scene to another. Totally beyond the scope of anything so despicable, the acting, cinematography and direction bring it all together as a very scary situation that’s a family’s worst nightmare. That said, I am bothered by the way they chose to end the film, but that’s something horror fans can deal with on their own. Read more

The Best of It, Making the Right Bet

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Making the right bet on a college basketball team can get you a lot of money. The other side of the coin however, can put you in debt. In the documentary film The Best of It we find that there are smart gamblers and not so smart ones. Director Scott Pearson Eberly puts together a cross section of betters and adds a few odds makers in this enlightening film that reveals the stress and elation of winning. Oh and some dire consequences of losing as well. Read more

Papa Hemingway in Cuba, Intimate and Daring

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A bold time capsule of Ernest Hemingway’s life in Cuba gets revealed through the eyes of a reporter who lived it in the film Papa Hemingway in Cuba. Richly shot in the estranged county, the movie delves into the Pulitzer and Nobel Prize winning writer’s intimate lifestyle on the island in the 1950’s. Taught, daring and an eye opener the fine cast does a terrific job of character portrayal under the able direction of Bob Yari from an autobiographical script written by Denne Bart Petitclerc.

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