007: Skyfall review

The twenty third Bond film, “Skyfall,” Begins with 007 being seemingly KIA in a mission to receive codes containing the whereabouts and identities of the agents of MI6. Bond manages to survive though and lives in seclusion for a while. That is until MI6 comes under attack by the mysterious organization who stole the codes.

James then returns to London to take up the mission, However Bond hasn’t been in the game for a while, is getting older and might not be as great as he used to be, none the less he still goes on the mission. What this leads to is an exploration into Bond’s past, his upbringing and a villain who has ties to MI6.

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Paranormal Activity 4 review

Director:
Henry Joost
Ariel Schulman
Cast:
Katie Featherston
Kathryn Newton
Matt Shively
Rated: R

It’s funny to think that three short years ago, I actually loved the first film and now I really dislike this series.

“Paranormal Activity 4” picks up five years after the end of the first film. The movie follows a new family who appears to have no connection to the previous movies. However when the character Katie from the previous movies comes and moves in next door and hidden facts begin to be revealed. I won’t go much more into the plot just because of spoilers.

With the first “Paranormal Activity,” I really enjoyed it mainly for its simplicity in so many sections. The budget was small but they used it well and did many things that were crafty, the story was also very simple, there was no major back story or major mythology, it was just a simple haunting, I enjoyed that. I didn’t know much about what was going on, and that worked. This made the film such a lightning in a bottle project, and probably should have stayed just one movie.

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Here comes the Boom review

Director:
Frank Coraci
Cast:
Kevin James
Salma Hayek
Henry Winkler
Bas Rutten
Rated: PG

“Here Comes the Boom” follows the story of Scott (James), a teacher who was once really confident in education and school however has recently lost his drive. At the same time he finds out that the music department of the school, as well as other departments are going to be cut, which would mean Scott’s friend Marty (Winkler), would lose his job.

This sets Scott off on a quest to try to raise some money to rescue the music department. After watching a UFC fight with a man named Nikko (Rutten), who Scott teaches in a night class for American citizenship, he decides to go in and try to raise money by fighting since he had experience as a Division I wrestler in college.

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Argo review

Welcome to the elite director club, Mr. Affleck.

“Argo” is Ben Affleck’s latest film as a director, and apparently the third time’s the charm as this one is as good, if not better, than his previous two projects. The film takes place during 1979, when six Americans escaped the U.S. embassy in Iran and went into hiding with the Canadian ambassador. Affleck plays the role of Tony Mendez, a CIA agent who specializes in extracting hostages. Mendez is tasked with coming up with a plan to help the six diplomatic personnel escape from the revolution-torn country.

Mendez eventually comes up with a dangerous but workable plan that involves creating fake identities for himself and the six people that are in Iran. Fake identities would label that the seven are a film crew scouting areas for a sci-fi movie. The plan is selected and Mendez gets the help of Hollywood producer Lester Siegel, played by Alan Arkin, and make-up specialist John Chambers, played by John Goodman. Together they set a plan in motion to create publicity for a fake film called “Argo,” so that Mendez has a plausible story for being in Iran and getting the six out.

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Pitch Perfect review

Director:
Jason Moore
Cast:
Anna Kendrick
Rebel Wilson
Brittany Snow
Skylar Astin
Rated: PG-13

Never imagined there could be a cappella battles but this movie proved me wrong.

“Pitch Perfect” is a comedy centering on a college music group called the Bellas, an all female a cappella group that is trying to win a championship. Anna Kendrick plays a freshman college student named Beca, whose main focus is being a DJ however she has the ability to sing real well too. This is discovered by the head of the Bellas, Aubrey, played by Anna Camp, who recruits Beca into the group.

The film’s plot takes place over the school year and shows the Bellas compete with their on-campus rival all male a cappella group the Treble Makers. Things become a little more complicated when Beca begins feeling a romantic connection with on of the new Treble Makers, Jesse played by Atin.

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Hotel Transylvania review

Director:
Genndy Tartakovsky
Cast:
Adam Sandler
Andy Samberg
Selena Gomez
Kevin James
Steve Buscemi
CeeLo Green
Rated: PG

Adam Sandler and his entourage are invading animation now.

“Hotel Transylvani”a is the new film from director Genndy Tartakovsky, who was the director of the cartoon show “Dexter’s Lab.” The film is basically a play on the Universal Monsters from the 40s, with Dracula (Sandler) running a hotel for monsters. Frequent guests are Frankenstein (James) and the wolfman, in this movie named Wayne (Buscemi).

For the most part life is pretty normal for the monsters except that Dracula has a teenage daughter named Mavis (Gomez) who wants to explore the outside world; however Dracula feels it’s important to keep his daughter safe so Mavis is not allowed to leave the castle.

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September 2012 Mini Reviews

Premium Rush – High 2 out of 5
If Stallone hadn’t already used the title “Over the Top” for one of his movies, it would have been a perfect fit for this flick. Everything about “Premium Rush” is over exaggerated, the acting and the action feels like it’s out of a cartoon. What helps the film is that it felt like it knew that it was over the top, the movie had a tounge-in-cheek attitude which made it fun and humorous. Unfortunately, the film ran just a bit too long and the story and characters didn’t have enough depth to sustain it.

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The House at the end of the Street review

Jennifer Lawrence decided not to save her best for last this year.

“House at the End of the Street” follows Elissa, played by “Hunger Games” star Jennifer Lawrence, as a young high school student who has just moved into a new town. Upon arrival at her new house, she and her mother Sarah, played by Elisabeth Shue, are informed about the history of the neighboring house. Years ago, a murder occurred where a mother and a father were killed by their own daughter. The son, who was living out of town at the time, inherited the house and now lives there on his own and the daughter was reported as having gone missing and eventually died.

The son named Ryan, portrayed by Max Thieriot, has now for the most part become a shut-in, young man who doesn’t leave his house much, however, eventually he meets Elissa and the two start a relationship. Ryan is actually hiding a dark secret in the basement of his house.

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Trouble with the Curve review

Director:
Robert Lorenz
Cast:
Clint Eastwood
Amy Adams
John Goodman
Justin Timberlake
Rated: PG-13

The movie could also have been called Trouble with Writing Characters.

“Trouble with the Curve” follows the story of Gus (Eastwood), an aging baseball scout who is beginning to have trouble with his eyesight. At the same time there is a new up and coming baseball scout who uses computers more who doesn’t believe Gus can do the job anymore, the organization still sends Gus out to recruit a kid who looks like a great draft pick.

Meanwhile, Gus’ daughter Mickey (Adams), who he doesn’t have a great relationship with is almost at the point where she can get a promotion at her law firm. However Gus’ eye condition convinces Mickey to come back and help him during the scouting process.

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Hit and Run review

Director:
Dax Shepard
Cast:
Dax Shepard
Kristen Bell
Bradley Cooper
Tom Arnold
Rated: R

So Dax Shepard wrote, directed and starred in this film. He’s the real whole package, only problem is that what’s in the package isn’t very good.

“Hit and Run” follows the story of a man in witness protection who was once a getaway driver named Charlie Bronson (Shepard). Charlie is in a relationship with a woman named Annie (Bell) who doesn’t know everything about his past being involved with robberies.

One day Annie finds out she can get a better job at a University, however it would be in Los Angeles, where Charlie could be in danger.

Charlie however decides to bring Annie to LA anyways, yet one of the people who he testified against finds out and goes after him.

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