Friday, August 3, 2012

Disturbia (2007)

Number Rolled: 17
Movie Name/Year: Disturbia (2007)
Genre: Thriller, Crime Thriller
Length: 104 minutes
Rating: PG-13
Director: D.J. Caruso
Writer: Christopher B. Landon, Carl Ellsworth
Actors: Shia LaBeouf, Carrie-Anne Moss, David Morse, Matt Craven, Dominic Daniel, Amanda Walsh, Jose Pable Cantillo, Sarah Roemer, Aaron Yoo

Disturbia was amazing the first time I saw it, great the second and now it has plateau-ed at good. This movie was in the beginning of Shia’s career just a few months prior to his role as Sam Witwicky in Transformers. When he was in this movie he was still trying to stand on his own two feet – away from Disney. Personally, I still believe he did a great job and helped to mold his acting personality.

The movie itself has a general storyline that has been done before, but it is my opinion that they do that storyline very well. They concentrated a bit much on the romance aspect, but in the end the success or failure of the “hero” had nothing to do with the girl and that was somewhat refreshing.

I kind of wish Hollywood would understand that girls are in it for the storylines too and not just the romance.

Overall Opinion – 3/5

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Adventures of a Teenage Dragonslayer (2010)

Number Rolled: 62
Movie Name/Year: Adventures of a Teenage Dragonslayer (2010)
Genre: Children & Family
Length: 92 minutes
Rating: PG
Director: Andrew Lauer
Writer: Jamie Nash
Actors: Lea Thompson, Wendie Malick, Amy Pietz, Eric Lutes, Andrew Lauer, Abigail Victor, Hunter Allan, Jordon Reynolds, Shawn Prince, Ryil Adamson, Ryan Bradley Norris, Richard Sellers

Now this movie started off horribly. I flipped it on, took one look, glanced at my boyfriend and went “what the hell did I get myself into?” Netflix has this movie rated at two and a half stars and I believe that’s because people just couldn’t make it past the beginning.

Once you get past that initial “wtf” and straight into the heart of it, it gets really cute! It’s like another version of the Neverending Story. It’s got that same kind of imaginative, fantasy invading reality feel. But with a type of card game like Magic: the Gathering come to life. Can you imagine learning that Jace the Mind Slayer was real, living in your time… and hunting you down? All while you’re around twelve years old? Prepare that Counterspell!

Listen, I rate the beginning at a 1 and the rest of it at a 4.5 because it kept me laughing like a hyena. So it averages out to about 2.75, but I had to give it a little extra. Give it a chance and fight hard to get to the good part.

Overall Opinion – 3/5

Monday, July 30, 2012

Ever After: A Cinderella Story (1998)

Number Rolled: 50
Movie Name/Year: Ever After: A Cinderella Story (1998)
Genre: Romantic Drama
Length: 121 minutes
Rating: PG-13
Director: Andy Tennant
Writer: Susannah Grant, Andy Tennant, Rick Parks, Charles Perrault
Actors: Drew Barrymore, Anjelica Huston, Dougray Scott, Patrick Godfrey, Megan Dodds, Melanie Lynskey, Timothy West, Judy Parfitt, Jeroen Krabbe, Lee Ingleby

Ever After is by far my favorite telling of the Cinderella story. I imagine that if it were a true story, this is what it would be like. It’s almost an adult version of the story. Not adult as in sex; adult as in mature.

If one were to create a list of all the Cinderella-based movies out there, I can imagine the list would be in the high triple digits. It’s a famous story that is a big deal in many childhoods. However, most of the movies on that list would be geared toward children. Hell, the Disney channel makes a new one every year or so.

Not only are most of the renditions geared toward children, but there really aren’t all that many different ways to tell the same story. Girl and father are close. Father remarries. Father dies. Stepmother treats girl badly. Girl grows up as servant. Girl falls in love with Prince. Prince returns love but doesn’t realize she’s a servant. Stepmother learns of love and locks up girl. Prince frees girl. Girl and Prince live happily ever. Oh, and there are always a ball/dance and some fancy shoes involved. It’s a classic and doesn’t need changing really.

Although “Ever After” does follow most of the rules in the outline for Cinderella, it offers it in a fresh new way. Introducing Gypsies and Leonardo da Vinci into the mix and coming up with what – in my point of view – is a much better ending than the cookie-cutter version.

Overall Opinion – 4/5