Kill the Messenger, a Compelling Political Thriller

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Sometimes you just want to scream when you witness an appalling injustice. Point of statement, the subject of the true story Kill the Messenger. The movie takes you on a trail that opens old wounds about the American CIA and the tactics used for a means to an end. Very good performances all around, direction impeccable and a bold script make this political thriller a winner. Read more

Gone Girl, a Baffling Crime Thriller

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It may be a little long, get pretty dicey and turn your head in disgust, but Gone Girl will win you over in the end.  The brilliantly written crime drama has this year’s top performances, creative direction and enough twists to curl a whole head of hair.  From its cunning elementary opening the audience slowly gets sucked into this heinous story that’s fed from the realization that you want to dislike it, but can’t take your eyes off the screen. Read more

Are You Here, a Comedy with a Heavy Serious Edge

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Taking on characters that are far from their norm, Zach Galifianakis, Owen Wilson and Amy Poehler show their comedy with a serious edge in the romantic drama Are You Here.  Surprisingly the three can hold their own and show their fans that they have an ability to take on other more serious roles. The movie, now on DVD for home viewing, is also available in Blu-ray. Read more

The Equalizer, Denzel is Bold and Brutal

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Returning to the screen with a very pervasive performance, Denzel Washington stars as a vigilante marauder in The Equalizer.  Providing a character with high intensity the movie conjures up memories of the violence in Safe House, Man on Fire and Training Day, three of Washington’s most fierce portrayals. There’s not much comedy to lighten the load in this thriller, but those who like it fast and brutal are sure to get an adrenaline rush. Read more

The Drop, A Mesmerizing Crime Drama

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Probably the darkest crime drama’s you’ll see this year and that’s a good thing.  The film The Drop takes you into the hazy world of crime that has only one way out, a body bag.  Stellar acting, fine executed direction and a suspense filled plot that will keep you glued to the screen.  The film does spool out at a steady slow pace, but the rewards are high for those who want one more chance to enjoy a final great performance on film by James Gandolfini.

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Last of Robin Hood, a Tell-all Bio

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Based on direct interviews with Beverly Aadland, the last woman in the life of Errol Flynn, The Last of Robin Hood has been released for the screen.  Researched, written and directed by Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland the movie is a “tell all” about the last two years of Flynn’s impulsive life and his two closest women.  While the movie does reveal most of the sordid details, the shock value doesn’t come off the screen.

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“Jersey Shore Massacre” Bimbos Beefcake and Blood

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Wild and wacky, the horror comedy Jersey Shore Massacre gets a home entertainment release on Blu-ray and DVD.  The film has the perfect cast for the heavy Jersey accent laden spoof and makes it a fun watch.  It may be a little over the top when it comes to teasing the guidos and guidettes on the “Jersey Riviera”, but there’s nothing like it when it comes to their ethnic banter.  The film does tend to get a little ridiculous at times, but if you like your horror with comedy and a lot of fake guts and gore, this one gets silly right down to the last bloody scene of the story.   Read more

“Lullaby” an Emotionally Driven Drama

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Now on DVD the movie Lullaby has a big name cast that’s enticing, but first time Director Andrew Levitas fails to deliver a good script beyond the first act. Emotionally driven the drama tugs a few times too many at the heartstrings creating more of a maudlin film that dampens the entertainment value. A disappointment for me as the initial first chapter looked like it was heading for a big hit. Read more

“Lucy” A Non-stop Action-thriller

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Out of nowhere comes Lucy a wild ride of mind over matter from Writer/Director Luc Besson.  This cunning thriller opens with excitement and never stops the action to the very end. It’s my idea of a true Sci-Fi thriller that tantalizes your brain with possibilities beyond belief, and then takes you even further with the question, What If?

The film poses the following premise: “The average person uses 10% of their brain capacity. Imagine what you could do with 100%”.   Read more

“Boyhood” No More than a Study on Growing Pains

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Not many or any of the filmmakers that have made films in my lifetime have ever taken a chance on a production that would take 12 years in the making.  No, Boyhood‘s not one of those blockbuster films  that takes years of animation, or documentaries that have a lot of structure, or even Mother Nature events to hold production back.  This film’s a drama about ordinary life that spans 18 years in one family’s natural aging process that, not unlike most of us, faces everyday problems and growing pains.   Read more

“Sex Tape” a Wild Romp of Love Making

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It’s a wild romp of love making in the newest hard R film Sex Tape.  The funny little comedy shows what can happen when you find yourself loosing track of a personal filming of a bedroom escapade.  Strictly for adults, the voyeuristic adventure is nicely directed and acted. If you do not blush easily, are not insulted by repeated offensive language, would like to get some pointers (now I just said that for effect) then grab your partner, girlfriends or a sex therapist and see Sex Tape. Read more

“Whitey” a Criminal Gets his Day in Court

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Taken from over a decade of headlines, the taut documentary “Whitey:United States of America v. James J. Bulger” puts one of America’s most wanted men and the FBI under the microscope.  The film delves into one of Boston’s most iconic murderers and extortionists that held the city in terror.  Not since the Boston strangler in the 1970’s has a man been most feared.  This hard line news event puts the audience in judgment of the crimes and those who protected the criminal. Read more

“Tammy” A Wacky Road Trip

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Totally askew the new comedy with and written by Melissa McCarthy and directed by her husband Ben Falcone plays out more like a YouTube video than a major motion picture.  Called Tammy, the film puts together a number of McCarthy sight gags that fall flat, very unlike The Heat in which she shines.  Maybe her shtick requires some tweaking or she needs to stay away from writing her own script, as both endeavors failed here. Lacing the film with a bevy of familiar faces is the first clue that this movie’s on a dubious path with no light at the end of the tunnel. Using her past success to fuel interest in Tammy may get her a haul at the box-office, but her fans will suffer in the end. It’s a NO for me. Read more

“Jersey Boys” A Rocking Good Drama

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Creating a blast from the past, Clint Eastwood delivers Jersey Boys the rocking musical that took Broadway by storm.  Creating more of a drama than a song fest, the movie takes the audience from the Four Seasons chaotic beginning to stardom.  Using the lead actor from the original Broadway cast the movie emulates more than what most everyone has been eagerly awaiting. Read more

The Fun Continues with “22 Jump Street”

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Taking step two, the sequel 22 Jump Street sends the boys to college.  The hilarious comedy extends the life of the series by one and puts Jump Street on a road to a possible franchise.  Sit through to the end just as the credits roll for some very funny poster takes on possible new chapters in the lives of Schmidt and Jenko.  If 22 Jump Street’s box-office tops their first release, then it would only seem right to give us a shot at 23 Jump Street. Read more