Friday, September 6, 2013

Bachelorette (2012)

Number Rolled: 38
Movie Name/Year: Bachelorette (2012)
Genre: Comedy
Length: 87 minutes
Rating: R
Director: Leslye Headland
Writer: Leslye Headland
Actors: Kirsten Dunst, Rebel Wilson, Lizzy Caplan, Isla Fisher, Andrew Rannells, Hayes MacArthur, Kyle Bornheimer, James Marsden, Ann Dowd, Adam Scott, Ella Rae Peck, Shauna Miles, Arden Myrin, Candy Buckley

Regan is less than thrilled when she finds out Becky, her friend since high school, is getting married before her. However, she’s forced to choke down the jealousy in order to be the Maid of Honor. The movie skips to six months later, the day before the wedding, and one can see just how much the stress of the day had gotten to her. When two old friends come in for the Bachelorette party, things go from bad to worse.

I’ve thought a lot about this movie. There are some parallels between this and “The Kitchen,” where storyline is concerned. If you remember back to my review for that film, you’ll remember I was less than impressed. I find myself underwhelmed with “Bachelorette” as well. To be honest, after some serious consideration, I think I may just not like this kind of story.

If I put aside the story and just review everything else, however, I still don’t like it. For a comedy, I found myself laughing considerably less than I would have expected. The writer/director seemed to try SO hard to be edgy that she forgot to add any substance to the script or the characters or… anything really. Not only that, but whoever chose the cover for this movie was probably trying to cash in on the concept that wasn’t, because this is the most misleading art for a movie I have ever seen. Add to that a trailer that reveals almost the entire ending and I pretty much consider “Bachelorette” a disaster.

It’s not all bad, though. The actors succeeded in making me care a few times which, in a movie like this, isn’t really all that easy. I also liked the sound track quite a bit and, despite the overall lack of funny, there were a couple of moments that actually made me laugh.

If you are going to attempt to watch the movie, don’t watch the trailer first. There are a ridiculous amount of spoilers.

Overall Opinion – 2/5

P.S. Based on a play with the same name by the same writer.

Movie Trailer:

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Black Hawk Down (2001)

Number Rolled: 51
Movie Name/Year: Black Hawk Down (2001)
Genre: Action & Adventure
Length: 144 minutes
Rating: R
Director: Ridley Scott
Writer: Mark Bowden, Ken Nolan
Actors: Josh Hartnett, Ewan McGregor, Tom Sizemore, Eric Bana, William Fichtner, Ewen Bremner, Sam Shepard, Gabriel Casseus, Kim Coates, Hugh Dancy, Ron Eldard, Ioan Gruffudd, Tom Guiry, Charlie Hofheimer, Danny Hoch, Jason Isaacs, Zeljko Ivanek, Glenn Morshower, Jeremy Piven, Brendan Sexton III, Johnny Strong, Richard Tyson, Brian Van Holt, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Steven Ford, Ian Virgo, Tom Hardy, Gregory Sporleder, Carmine Giovinazzo, Chris Beetem, Tac Fitzgerald, Matthew Marsden, Orlando Bloom

This story, based on a real event, shows the ordeal Delta Force Soldiers and Army Rangers went through in order to kidnap two crime lords in war-torn Somalia. What is supposed to be an easy mission turns into one of the longest ground battles involving Americans since Vietnam, after a Black Hawk helicopter is shot down. The Americans are committed to getting every one of their men out, and so they are surrounded and must fight until help arrives.

To be honest, I don’t actually know the historical validity of this movie. I’m not a historian and I wasn’t really old enough to care about the news when this event would have taken place. Since many of my friends have gone into, or come from, the military I’ve cared a great deal, but that’s now. The real terror of “Black Hawk Down” is that, even if it’s not word for word exactly what happened – it easily could have been. It projects into the audience the anxiety and confusion of war in the most realistic manner I’ve ever seen. The story is heartbreaking and difficult to separate yourself from.

There wasn’t an actor in it that I didn’t believe. Hartnett was the main lead, and he was absolutely outstanding, but so was everyone else in the film.

I’d highly recommend this movie, to most viewers. However, there’s no comedy and no light-heartedness to break up the harsh light of the main storyline. I’d recommend any viewer with sensitivities to violence reconsider their film-viewing options.

Overall Opinion – 4.5/5

Monday, September 2, 2013

My Sucky Teen Romance (2011)

Number Rolled: 94
Movie Name/Year: My Sucky Teen Romance (2011)
Genre: Comedy
Length: 76 minutes
Rating: NR
Director: Emily Hagins
Writer: Emily Hagins
Actors: Elaine Hurt, Patrick Delgado, Santiago Dietche, Lauren Lee, Tony Vespe, Lauren Vunderink, Devin Bonnee, Sam Eidson, Tina Rodriguez

Kate has a crush on Paul, the geeky cashier at the local supermarket. Unfortunately, she has some difficulty actually talking to him. As she packs for her weekend at the sci-fi convention, Paul finds himself in a rough position. After he’s turned into a vampire, they run into each other at the con and attempt to figure things out together.

I was kind of impressed with the movie. It had a rough start and the script wasn’t nearly as polished as it could have been, but there are a lot of factors to take into account with that. The most important thing to remember is who Emily Hagins is. The writer/director of this film is one of the youngest directors in history. Steven Spielberg was 11 years old when he directed his first film, “The Last Train Wreck.” Emily Hagins was 12. Younger than most directors (18 at the time of this film’s release) and with a very small budget, Hagins managed to not only get her point across, but managed to do so in a entertaining method.

The movie is geared toward young teenagers, the anti-Twilight, Twilight-age crowd. It takes an interesting look at the sparkly vampire nonsense. Have you ever wondered how a real vampire would react to the Twilight-craze? Well, “My Sucky Teen Romance” goes into it.

The actors had their moments, but they weren’t spectacular. None-the-less, I found myself entranced by the end of the movie and caught a bit off-guard by the climax.

Don’t expect a blockbuster. This was a very good B-movie. If you can get past the flaws, the story is worth it. I look forward to seeing what Hagins does in the future. She’s going to be one of the greats, I believe it.

Overall Opinion – 3.5/5

The Random Rating: PG-13 (for extended horror scenes)

P.S. Although the cover makes it seem like a cartoon, it’s live-action.

P.P.S. “My Sucky Teen Romance” was partially funded by a site called “Indiegogo.” If you want to get an idea of the budget for the film check out the site: