The year is nearly to a close, with 2014 right around the corner. Here are the top 10 best films of 2013.
Monday, December 30, 2013
Friday, December 27, 2013
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is a strange film. At one moment it's a drama, then another moment it's a hardcore adventure. Comedy tries to break through, but it becomes stale and the film is left on Stiller's shoulders. Every movie has it's flaws. What could make The Secret Life of Walter Mitty Better?
The Wolf of Wall Street is an extravaganza of corruption, greed, lust, power, cocaine, Quaalude's, nudity, directing and acting. A nonstop comedy about one man's quest for Wall Street domination and, of course, money. This film doesn't settle for weak performances or poor dialogue. Everything rolls together perfectly all the way up to the final shot.
Tuesday, December 24, 2013
Walter Mitty might bolster strong ideas, but these ideas are too big and too many for the film to keep its feet on the ground. Two films meshed into one.
Monday, December 23, 2013
There are certain movies this year that I've not seen due to their critical bashing, i.e. After Earth. However, there were many horrible films this year. Some underwhelmed me, some made me wan't to scream, and some were just a little too much. Here are the top 10 worst films of 2013.
1. The Lone Ranger
I was looking forward to this film. Starring Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer and being a western, it seemed like a good fit for me. Instead, the characters were unlikable and the movie wasn't the Lone Ranger's movie, it was Tonto's. The western aspect was ignored and the view towards the Native Americans was racist. The story was horribly written. It felt like the writers took two days to write the script and didn't care to polished it. Grade: F
|"Depp, you're rich and can have any role you want. Me, on the other hand. Well, I just made a big mistake!"|
2. A Good Day To Die Hard
The Die Hard film franchise has finally died. It began its downfall with Live Free Die Hard and has just plummeted down the fan base. It's because Bruce Willis is getting old and the studio is looking for replacements, but they can't find a suitable actor to replace Willis. You notice that Willis is bored out of his mind the entire film and Jai Courtney can't act. Better luck next time. The story was poorly written and the dialogue, crummy. Let's take the story back to the good old days. Give us a memorable villain and a fun, witty action hero. I feel we don't get those nowadays. Grade: F
|Father and son at last! I wonder what happened to Samuel L. Jackson's character. Any thoughts?|
3. The Host
No one remembered this film. That's how bad it was. Only reason I remember this, was because after the film I went and had great sushi. No one knew how to act. This film tried to feed off the popularity of the Twilight franchise, because only the readers of Stephanie Meyer books would know about this catastrophe. Pacing was off and the dialogue was nails-on-a-chalkboard. Grade: F
|Choose to not see this movie. Like, never see it.|
4. World War Z
Why make a PG-13 zombie movie? The story was surprisingly boring, and the action sequences underwhelmed. It also seemed that the screenwriters had no clue what to write about. They read the book and decided to make an entirely different film, finding out that letting Brad Pitt go to one city and that city being destroyed by zombies could work three or four more times. It was annoying to get the same repeated situation over and over. And, the Pepsi product placement was phenomenally the best ass-hole move any company made this year. What made this film great? Give me your argument. I dare you. Grade: D
|Mmm! Product Placement|
Yep. This was made. The upside is, it won't be remembered. The downside is, I actually had to watch this film. The chemistry of the actors, the acting, the story, the special effects, the action, were all horrible. Nothing blended together and it felt like Spike Lee tried too hard to deviate from the original film. All the excitement and grandeur was lost. Grade: D
|"Stop! Hammer time!"|
6. White House Down
Here's another film that disappointed me. I had just got done watching Olympus Has Fallen, and decided to give this film a try. To say the least, it was not as exciting. This film trades story and action for cheap jokes and special effects. In a year with two White House invasion films, this one faltered in story telling, action, and acting. Grade: D
7. Charlie Countryman
This film just had too many story problems. The writer crammed every idea into this small film, and it became overwhelming. It was an acid trip, a love story, a mafia tale, and it was all over the place. No one gave a damn on their performances. There were some subplots that never developed and the film ended quickly. Grade: D+
|"I can act. I promise I can."|
8. Movie 43
This film had its moments, but as I watched it I was wondering why any of these actors would embarrass themselves. Halle Berry stuffing hot sauce up her vagina, a naked iBabe (like an iPod except life-sized hot woman), and balls on the chin. The film had a serious undertone about the qualities, the sacrifices, and how hard it is to make it in Hollywood, but it was all lost on goofiness and bad jokes. Grade: D+
|"This ain't hockey!" - There are around 30 'black' hockey players in the NHL. True story!|
9. The Hangover: Part 3
I didn't know what to expect. I knew it was a different story than the previous two, but it was a slowly paced, strange story that didn't make much sense. I would have been okay if the Wolfpack just did the same plot from the previous films in New York City or something. Each character was used up and the jokes were cheap. Funny moments were few and far between. Grade: C-
|"Tigers love pepper. They hate cinnamon."|
10. A Place Beyond the Pines
I'll admit, I watched this film for Ryan Gosling. Then 30 minutes into the film, Ryan Gosling dies. The film's about generations and how your actions today might bring consequences to your children later in life. It was interesting at best, but the pacing was off and the movie trailers lied about the film's plot. Executives had no clue on how to market the film, so it fell on the shoulders of Gosling and didn't succeed. Grade: C-
|Look at that beautiful face!|
American Hustle keeps the story flowing with phenomenal acting and dialogue that beautifully rolls off the page, but as the film progresses it feels like a knock off Scorsese gangster flick with no legs to stand.
Saturday, December 21, 2013
Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues is a hilarious epic, with the same old witty cast, and many newcomers. Will Farrell and his San Diego-based news team bring the thunder of comedy, but many newcomers get a silent crowd and the story becomes muddled with side-story after side-story.
Saving Mr. Banks is an emotional thrill ride, with wonderful acting and an amazing story. Sure, I had my doubts, being a Walt Disney fan, but the film's direction was unexpected and I was amazed by how the story swept me into a beautifully crafted world of emotion and love. You won't leave this film with a dry eye.
Friday, December 20, 2013
We have traveled back to Middle-Earth for the fifth time. This time, Jackson goes to show that he is finally losing his magic. Cumberbatch was amazing, Smaug was amazingly created, and the music made me shiver, but what went wrong?
Monday, December 16, 2013
Out of the Furnace delivered phenomenal acting, but the story was too dark and depressing to handle. So, what could make this film better?
Sunday, December 15, 2013
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug marks Peter Jackson's fifth outing in J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle-Earth. With every Hobbit film, Peter Jackson slowly loses his touch of genius and slowly ruins the magic of Middle-Earth and what made The Lord of the Rings so amazing. The Desolation of Smaug is better than its predecessor, but jams too many characters and stories to give the audience a film more about the mythology of Middle-Earth than the story of one hobbit.
Sunday, December 8, 2013
Out of the Furnace is a compelling story of two loving brothers being separated by bad life choices. A great tale with an amazing cast that often finds itself lost with slow, dragging moments and poor dialogue.
Sunday, December 1, 2013
With beautiful animation and a fulfilling story, Frozen is Disney's best animated musical since the studio's 90's renaissance.
Frozen follows princess Anna (Kristen Bell) as she searches for her estranged sister, Elsa (Idina Menzel), who's magical ice powers have sent the kingdom Arendelle into an eternal winter. This film is beautifully animated. It is the snow and ice that creates a cold, but magical atmosphere which seems all too real. From the snow to the freckles on Anna's face, the film is capsulized as a hyper-realistic form of animation Disney has never pursued for a musical feature. Even the way the characters move is animated on par or above Pixar's level. No character was a simple archetype either. Isolationism and love were prominent themes, with the latter being overtaken with Elsa's castaway character arc. The first and third acts make the audience forget the muddled second act. However emotions stay strong throughout with Anna and Elsa fighting their internal fears.
Musically, each song is the usual Broadway style catchy pop to singalong to. However, the songs did not fit in with the time period the film portrayed. Each song seemed unoriginal and bland, with few impressing the musical geek inside me. Lyrically, the lyricist's words couldn't go beyond that of a fifth grader. An amazing Kristen Bell and always wonderful Idina Menzel belt out their best with what they're given. However, the real musical disappointment came halfway through the film when the singing seemed to disappear entirely.
Beautifully animated with a heartfelt story and truly tested characters, Frozen is an overall good film. The musical numbers were limited and lyrically plain, with a few great exceptions. This film comes closest to the Disney Renaissance Era of musicals, but still misses that hint of magic in the music.
Good Qualities: Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel are amazing singers, story was filled with heartfelt emotions, amazing animation.
Bad Qualities: The songs were few and far between and lyrically simple.