Posts

Showing posts from August 6, 2017

Review: London Has Fallen

Whilst the Vice President (Morgan Freeman) is temporarily left in charge, President Asher (Aaron Eckhart) and trusted friend/Secret Service Agent Banning (Gerard Butler) head off with Secret Service head Lynne Jacobs (Angela Bassett) to London to attend the funeral of the recently deceased Prime Minister. Turns out though, that the funeral is being used by arms dealers Alon Aboutboul and Waleed Zuaiter to take out a bunch of world leaders all at once. It’s up to Banning to see that President Asher does not end up among the casualties and to snuff out the bad guys while he’s at it. Charlotte Riley turns up as an MI6 agent who aids Banning, whilst Robert Forster and Melissa Leo reprise their roles as General Clegg and Defense Secretary McMillan, Radha Mitchell returns as Banning’s loving (and now pregnant) wife, whilst Jackie Earle Haley plays White House Chief of Staff Mason.

2013 gave us two White House-set action-thrillers. One of them was pretty good. This 2016 Babak Najafi (an Iran…

Review: Everybody Wants Some!!!

Blake Jenner stars as a college freshman baseball pitcher, and the film charts the 72 hours in his life before the first day of the first college semester. Zoey Deutch plays the artsy cutie Jenner has a thing for, Tyler Hoechlin and Juston Street play a couple of jerk ball players, and Glen Powell is essentially Jenner’s cocky McConaughey-esque mentor-of-sorts on campus.

Likeable 2016 slice-of-life from Richard Linklater (“Dazed and Confused”, “Boyhood”) is a very easy watch, so long as you’re not expecting much in the way of plot or character depth. That’s not Linklater’s strength really, and it’s definitely not what the writer-director is really concerned with here. Set in 1980 over a 72 hour period before the first day of the college year for a bunch of college baseball players, I’m glad that at least these characters, if not entirely popping out as individuals, are pretty likeable. Hell, even the least likeable ones at least tended to be funny (Juston Street’s arrogant head-case N…

Review: Sharknado 5: Global Swarming

Scripted by Scotty Mullen and directed by Anthony C. Ferrante (director of the previous films), the “Sharknado” franchise is back with this globe-trotting 2017 entry. We begin with an “Indiana Jones” rip-off font and prologue involving shark hunter Nova (Cassandra Cserbo) discovering Sharknado cave paintings, and eventually an ancient relic under Stonehenge that, when removed starts a whole shitstorm of Sharknado activity. Enter our heroic couple Fin Shepherd (Ian Ziering) and cosmetically…er…robotically enhanced wife April (Tara Reid, looking alternately drunk and confused), who attempt to save the day across several countries, but primarily England. Along the way you’ll see former “SNL” impish irritant Chris Kattan laughably miscast as the British PM, Clay Aiken (the first of way too many “Celebrity Apprentice” alum here) surprisingly not bad as an English scientist, Fabio hilariously cast as The Pope, Poison front-man Bret Michaels amusingly being hit by a double-decker bus in Lond…

Review: The Queen

Duh…It’s about Queen Elizabeth II (an Oscar-winning turn by Dame Helen Mirren), the recent death of Princess Diana, the public’s disbelief at the Royals’ lack of public acknowledgment of the tragic event and overall rigidity, and how recently elected PM Tony Blair (Michael Sheen) would work to bridge the gap between the seemingly out-of-touch Monarchy and the sentimental public, who adored Diana (perhaps in some ways, doing much to prop himself up a bit, too).

I’ve got to disagree with many (mostly American) people who suggest this solid, if mostly unsurprising 2006 Stephen Frears (“The Grifters”, “Prick Up Your Ears”) film would work better for Brits than anyone else. As an Australian, I’m more aware of the monarchy than say the Americans, and I think that made this sometimes intentionally comical film a bit hard to take. The Queen and her family are seen to do and say things that whilst quite possible (I’m reliably informed that she did indeed drive her own car at least at some poin…

Review: Mike & Dave Need Wedding Dates

Brothers Mike and Dave (Adam Devine and Zac Efron) are fuck-ups who end up wrecking every social gathering by getting too drunk, going too hard, and trying to hook up with every available young woman. Their parents (Stephen Root and Stephanie Faracy) are fed up, and their soon-to-be-married sister (Sugar Lyn Beard) refuses to let them ruin her impending wedding. The solution? Unless Mike and Dave can find dates to bring with them and keep them in line, they are barred from the wedding which is taking place in Hawaii. So the dopey duo put out an ad and interview prospective candidates. Enter Romy and Michelle…er…Alice (Anna Kendrick and Tatiana (Aubrey Plaza) who pretend to be perfect sweethearts just to get a free trip to Hawaii. In reality, they’re similar fuck-ups to Mike and Dave. Well this surely isn’t a recipe for disaster, is it?

Whatever the audience is for this 2016 comedy, I’m the absolute, positively opposite of it. Directed by first-time feature director Jake Szymanski (a v…