March-April 2010 Mini-Reviews

Our Family Wedding: 2/5
This movie staring Carlos Mencia and Forest Whitaker had potential with a humorous premise but just turned out to be another run of the mill wedding movie that mostly used some racial humor. Simply put, it didn’t work. Plus Mencia can’t really act and Whitaker was phoning it in.

Green Zone: 4/5
Based on real events in the Iraq War, this latest thriller starring Matt Damon balances being a war movie, an and an espionage picture. The film features particularly strong performances, especially from Damon. While the runtime was a bit too long, but for the most part this is a technically sound and suspenseful picture.

Remember Me: 1/5
This movie was the latest to star Twilight series front man Rob Pattinson. Going into I wasn’t expecting it to be that good, but after getting through most of it I was actually fairly surprised and was teetering on either giving it a low 3 or a very high 2 out of 5. While nothing special, it was an OK romantic drama seemed to be headed toward a fine resolution.

However that changed when the ending happened, which featured one of the most insulting twists to be used in a film. After this left field twist, that was only put in there to get tears in the most despicable way possible,  the rating plummeted.

She’s Out of My League: 1/5
This was the latest comedy to feature the type of ‘Apatow Universe’ that we’ve seen in other films like Knocked up where the average guy gets with the hot girl and hilarity ensues. That wasn’t the case here. The whole premise was weak from the start, the performers didn’t seem into it and the writing wasn’t particularly strong.

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: 0.5/5
I went into this not thinking that I was going to hate it so much, and for the first few minutes it didn’t seem so bad. But after about five minutes I began to hate every bit of this film. There are not many movies that I really want to physically harm the characters, but this was one of them. I hated every single one of them. I know it’s just a kids film, but can’t they make it a little more likable? The protagonist was a jerk the whole time, the brother was over the top, and the main character’s friends were treated so poorly, it was like they were second class citizens. Not to mention, all of the humor was simply gross out stuff, sometimes more disgusting than a “Saw” film.

The Bounty Hunter: 2/5
The latest film to star Gerard Butler and Jennifer Aniston was The Bounty Hunter. There was already plenty of bad press by the time I got to see this picture, but it was really just an average picture. The film features a couple nice moments and gives a chuckle here and there. Probably the most one can say about “The Bounty Hunter” is how mediocre it is. At the very least, Aniston and Butler have some charisma, pushing the movie to at least a 2.

Hot Tub Time Machine: 4/5
The best part of Hot Tub Time Machine was its total acceptance of the ridiculousness of the premise. It knows it’s dumb, but decides to have fun with it, and it ends up producing quite a few laughs. The jokes range from riffing on the 80s to the characters making decisions that could wreck the space time continuum. It works really well, especially thanks to the characters.

How To Train Your Dragon: 4/5
Watch out Pixar, Dreamworks is catching up. The most recent film from the animation studio does follow a premise of ‘boy and his dog’but does something completely new with it by having it be set with dragons in a far off land. Not only does it lead to sweet moments of the protagonist teaching the dragon, but it also provides solid adventure, too.

Clash of the Titans: 1/5
One of the movies I had been looking forward to seeing ended up being a piece of junk. The story was uninteresting, as it was basically like a video game, going from point A to point B. In the process, nothing  is sufficiently developed to give this adventure depth, this could have worked, but the movie seems to take itself too seriously. Plus, the main character Perseus was so bland and boring.

Even the fight scenes were rather forgettable, with poor special effects and lame fighting. Plus, the final battle is a disaster, featuring a horribly anticlimactic finale.

The Last Song: 2/5
I know everyone has been hating on Miley Cyrus but I didn’t find her to be terrible in this film. It’s nothing award worthy, but she shows that she has some screen experience. The plot, meanwhile, was completely predictable, taking the route of other Sparks’ novel based flicks that pull for heartstrings rather than substance. With that said, there are some nice emotional moments and the acting is OK.

Date Night: 2/5
This picture pulls together talented comedic actors Steve Carell and Tina Fey, but unfortunately, the movie is just average. The film feels largely void of genuine big laughs, mostly having a lot of chuckles here and there. Carell and Fey didn’t have the best chemistry, either.

Author: Matthew Liedke

Journalist and film critic in Minnesota. Graduate of Rainy River College and Minnesota State University in Moorhead. Outside of movies I also enjoy sports, craft beers and the occasional video game.

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