X-Men: First Class (2011)

PG-13 - Charles Xavier sets up a school for humans with superhuman abilities. Among them is Erik Lensherr, his best friend and future archenemy.

Insidious (2011)

PG-13 - Parents try to prevent their comatose son from being taken by evil spirits.

Source Code (2011)

PG-13 - A soldier wakes up in someone else's body and discovers that he is part of a mission to stop a train bombing.

Limitless (2011)

PG-13 - A writer discovers a new drug that unlocks the human brain's full potential.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Insidious (2011)

Corny or not, I still have goosebumps.

The plot centers around a young boy, Dalton (Ty Simpkins), falling into a coma after a relatively minor household accident. Things start to happen here and there, and it becomes clear that there is some creepiness going on. His parents, played by Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne, contract the help of a long lost family friend that happens to be a psychic. What ensues is a series of ridiculous, over the top moments that you will either love or hate. But either way, you'll find yourself flinching at least a few times.

This movie was definitely a mixed bag for me. The setup in the opening half of the movie was brilliant. Once things started happening, you really didn't know what would happen next. There were several times where shivers literally ran up my spine, which is something that a movie hasn't done for me since I was a kid. With that being said, let's get real. There were some ridiculously clich├ęd, horribly overdone, and just plain corny moments. The kind of moments that made Drag Me to Hell (2009) unwatchable. It's up to your personal taste whether the pure chill factor can outweigh the silliness.

On a side note, I just want to say that the camera work and visual style really went a long way to set the mood. Cocked camera angles and drastic perspective changes heightened the tension, making only slightly creepy moments drag you to the edge of your seat.

All in all, it was worth the watch. I'll give it a 7/10, being that it was only slightly filled with disappoint. If you are a fan of the horror genre, especially older films, you will love this movie. If not, I think you will still enjoy it. Trust me though, bring a friend, lol.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Source Code (2011)

Groundhog Day but with no laughing.

All joking aside, Source Code was actually an interesting film. Kind of a stretch, but no more so than Inception or any other conceptual movie like it. They are both movies that depict fictional science. But if you can get past reality of the situation, it was definitely an entertaining watch.

Larking back to my previous Groundhog Day comment, I could definitely make some comparisons between the film. You got the same feeling of boredom watching a series of events happen over and over. And there was a similar moment where Colter Stevens (Jake Gyllenhaal) predicted mundane happenings directly before they occurred, puzzling the female lead, played by Michelle Monaghan (Eagle Eye, Due Date). But these small similarities didn't take away from the film, which was much more action based. Didn't laugh once, promise.

The film tackles some heavy subjects if you're into that sort of thing. I mean, how much is a soldier expected to sacrifice for his country? This guy has to die over and over and over again. Don't get me wrong, saving lives is a priority. But the ethics of the situation is the real question.

The visual effects were decent. Nothing really outside of the box. I definitely appreciated the choice to keep Jake Gyllenhaal in place even when inside the source code. Bouncing back and forth between two actors would be confusing. Sound on the other hand was a mixed bag for me. I didn't notice anything throughout the film, but I found myself despising the background music during the introduction. I felt like I was transported back to some bad 80s movie. Ughh *shiver*

All joking aside, I would still recommend the film. Maybe don't go out of your way to see it in theaters, but a DVD is definitely an option. Don't worry about Blu-Ray, the only difference will be how crisp Gyllenhaal's five o'clock shadow looks. 6.5/10, maybe a seven. But only if you still haven't gotten over Donnie Darko.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Limitless (2011)

A ridiculously exciting roller coaster from start to finish. I seriously do not know where to begin.

The visual effects were stunning. Moments where Eddie (Bradley Cooper) was on the drug gave you, the audience, the feeling that you were actually on some sort of drug. The entire world became more vivid, giving his moments of "lucidity" a much more grey feeling. Time and space seemed to have no meaning. I can only assume that if I was the type of person to actually do drugs, I would have this movie on repeat for the rest of my life.

The plot circles around the rise of a poor writer, played by Bradley Cooper, to phenomenal heights in a short span of time. When on the drug, the film is wild and fun. I caught myself laughing out loud on occasion, which is always a good thing. When off the drug, the film is dark and, if I may be so bold, even scary at points. You never quite know what is going to happen next, and in that I think the true beauty of the film shines through. All of the normal predictions got thrown out the window on this one. 

The characters are definitely believable. Eddie, the main character, is a phenomenal protagonist. Even though he is willingly imbibing an illegal substance throughout the entire film, you are with him all the way. I found myself thinking out loud, "If he could just get a little more..." in several instances. His girlfriend, played by Abbie Cornish (Sucker Punch, Candy), was a very convincing person to be dating someone with Eddie's personality. The stereotypical "girl with everything going for her" falling for the "poor, nearly homeless artist" has played out many times before. At least this time it payed off for her. A lot of her interaction with on and off drugs Eddie seems a little odd, like she lets him get away with almost anything. But, after realizing how much she put up with him before NZT, you can kind of get the picture.

I don't want to get into much more. Honestly, I could write a lot about this movie. I really enjoyed it, and it is definitely worth going out and seeing. Don't wait around for DVD, this is a
film worth talking about now.

Easily a 9/10, if not more. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Rite (2011)

Finally, an exorcism movie worth watching.

The past few years have been pretty lacking when it comes to good movies about demonic possession. I think the last one I watched was ironically "The Last Exorcism", which finalized my desire to see them anymore. When I saw previews for "The Rite", I was immediately drawn back in. I don't think I've ever seen an Anthony Hopkins movie I didn't like, and he didn't let me down this time either.

The movie opens up with the main character, who works with his father at their own family funeral home, preparing a woman for her wake. Even in that first moment, there was a certain creepiness already settling around me. It was probably the hair or whatever he sewed in her mouth.



Moving on, he decides to go into the seminary for free education, something a Christian might frown upon. He eventually ends up in Rome with Anthony Hopkins's character, Father Lucas. You are immediately thrown into a fast paced series of scenes, at least for a movie in this category, leading all the way up to the ending.

While this movie definitely had an air of preachy-ness in the conclusion, it wasn't enough to deter me from enjoying this movie. I'm giving it an 8/10, bonus for getting me to enjoy a demonic movie again.

And, being the first post of this blog, I'd like to know some movies you might be interested in having me watch and review. Leave your answers in a comment and I will see you guys tomorrow