Friday, February 8, 2013

Ten Inch Hero (2007)

Number Rolled: 93
Movie Name/Year: Ten Inch Hero (2007)
Genre: Romance
Length: 102 minutes
Rating: R
Director: David Mackay
Writer: Betsy Morris
Actors: Elisabeth Harnois, Clea DuVall, Sean Patrick Flanery, Jensen Ackles, Danneel Ackles, Alice Krige, John Doe, Sean Wing, Adair Tishler, Jordan Belfi, Matt Barr, Peter Dennis, Judith Drake, Tony Daly

You get those movies that hide really drastically important subtext beneath the plot, the movies that are representations of political context, the movies that are just so much deeper than the script would lead you to believe; then you have movies like this. This was a really simple, straight-forward, movie.

Four coworkers and one boss work at a sandwich shop in Santa Cruz. Each member of the staff has their very own storyline and issues to work through. Piper, played by Elisabeth Harnois, put her child up for adoption when she was fifteen and believes she has found the girl living nearby. Jen, played by Clea DuVall, is a wallflower that has struck up a friendship with a person online and is confronted with the possibility of meeting them. Tish, played by Danneel Ackles (still Danneel Harris at time of production), is a promiscuous woman looking for the next thrilling relationship. Priestly, played by Jensen Ackles, is the punk rock anarchist that can’t seem to catch Tish’s eye. Finally, Trucker, played by John Doe, is hopelessly in love with the woman who runs a shop across the street and is too in awe to actually speak with her. Throughout the movie we see how each of these people confronts their various conflicts and aid each other through theirs.

I absolutely fell in love with this movie.

There’s so very little I can say about why, though. The actors did amazing work with an amazing script. It was like Clerks if you added more romance and just a little less comedy, not that it wasn’t comedic. In fact, if pressed, I would categorize it as a comedy instead of a romance.

As much comedy as there was, the movie still managed to get me all teary-eyed at the ending of at least one of the several storylines. A few of the ending parts, however, were a bit too tidy and neat for my liking. Very Disney-esk. And I don’t like the ending for Priestly at all. Even if I ignore the message of his particular ending, I felt like it cheapened the film just a bit.

None-the-less, it was an amazing movie that I am very likely to both recommend and watch again.

Overall Opinion – 4.5/5

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

My Fake Fiancé (2009)

Number Rolled: 58
Movie Name/Year: My Fake Fiancé (2009)
Genre: Comedy
Length: 87 minutes
Rating: NR
Director: Gil Junger
Writer: Howard March
Actors: Melissa Joan Hart, Joseph Lawrence, Nicole Tubiola, Burgess Jenkins, Diane Neal, Jason MacDonald, Steve Schirripa

Jennifer, played by Melissa Joan Hart, and Vince, played by Joseph Lawrence, meet at a wedding. Over wine and shared sarcasm, they decide they hate each other and part ways. A week later, Jennifer’s moving truck – with all her belongings – is stolen and Vince finds himself in a tight spot where he owes money to a bookie looking to collect. Jennifer thinks of Vince, finds his number and a scam to host a fake wedding, for the gifts, ensues.

I don’t know about you, but if I decide I dislike a person right off the bat, I usually forget their existence after a few hours of leaving their presence. If someone stole my moving van with all my stuff in it, first thing I’m going to think of is calling my fiancé, my best friend or my mother. Tracking down some asshole I met at a wedding wouldn’t even be my one hundredth priority. Ok, I know. It’s a romantic comedy. We need to suspend disbelief to a certain extent but… really?

I wouldn’t call this a ‘recipe’ move, per-say. It had ‘recipe-like’ qualities though. Mostly, it was a Melissa Joan Hart movie. You see that actress starring in a movie and you don’t even need to know the title. You know there’s going to be deception involved. You know there’s going to be romance involved and you know that it’s going to be the kind of romance where she hates the guy at first and slowly starts to see the good in him throughout the movie. I have yet to see her in any movie that differs, except maybe Sabrina: the Teenage Witch – in which magic was involved. And she did kind of like Harvey off the bat, if I remember correctly. It’s been a while.

The ending was kind of cool. It wasn’t really an over-done ending despite the over-done quality of that particular road of storyline. I enjoyed bits and pieces of the squabbling scenes. I squabble a lot. Apparently, I also really enjoy getting to use the word squabble. It’s a funny word. Squabble. I’m not high, just very tired.

To be honest, this movie reminded me of a very long episode of that TV show that these two were in. Or are in, I don’t know if it’s been cancelled yet. I forced myself to sit through a couple of episodes, unfortunately. What was it called? It was a really ridiculous name that showed a complete lack of creativity. Oh, right, “Melissa and Joey.” Wonder how they came up with that.

Overall Opinion – 2/5

Monday, February 4, 2013

Meet Bill (2007)

Number Rolled: 86
Movie Name/Year: Meet Bill (2007)
Genre: Comedy
Length: 93 minutes
Rating: R
Director: Bernie Goldmann, Melisa Wallack
Writer: Melisa Wallack
Actors: Aaron Eckhart, Jessica Alba, Elizabeth Banks, Logan Lerman, Holmes Osborne, Todd Louiso, Timothy Olyphant, Reed Diamond, Kristen Wiig, Jason Sudeikis, Andy Zou, Ana Lucasey, Constance Barron, Conor O’Farrell

This movie had so many actors and actress I love in it, that I had no choice but to put it on my instant queue; Jessica Alba, Elizabeth Banks, Logan Lerman and Timothy Olyphant. Unfortunately, the movie did not impress me.

Sad sack Bill, played by Aaron Eckhart, learns early on in the film that his wife, Jess (played by Elizabeth Banks), is cheating on him with news personality Chip, played by Timothy Olyphant. After a couple of outbursts, involving a video camera and some highly youtube worthy material, Bill finds himself worse off than he was at the very beginning of the movie – which was pretty bad to begin with. He finds himself forced to work with a high-school aged kid as a mentor and that kid (unnamed by the movie, played by Logan Lerman) begins to influence him to find his own identity.

The movie had its moments, but it wasn’t really my kind of comedy. I can see why others might enjoy it, but I spent the majority of the movie just thinking how wrong it was. And it was wrong on so many levels. I kept expecting child protective services or the cops to get involved in this very strange, borderline pedophilic, mentor-child relationship. There were parts I expect to see clips of on Law and order: SVU.

A couple of posts ago, I did a review on “The Forgotten.” In that review, I noted that a spectacular cast can sometimes take a not so great, unimaginative story and turn it into something amazing. However, I did say it was rare. In this case, we are faced with the rule, not the exception. You have a mediocre storyline with a bleh kind of wanna-be-American-Beauty script with an absolutely fantastic cast. It pretty much evens out into a mediocre movie.

How you feel about this movie will ultimately depend on your sense of humor.

Overall Opinion – 2.5/5