John Carter review

Director:
Andrew Stanton
Cast:
Taylor Kitsch
Lynn Collins
Samantha Morton
Willem Dafoe
Mark Strong
Rated: PG-13

The movie was originally going to be called “John Carter of Mars,” then in the movie they called him John Carter of Earth. Maybe they just couldn’t make up their damn minds.

John Carter is a sci fi adventure film following the title character, a Civil War vet who is now known by reputation as being a dangerous criminal. One day when making a get away from a group of basically cowboys and indians he stumbles across a cave with all sorts of designs on the walls.

He is then transported to Mars by an amulet and finds out that the planet is made up by three different factions who are all hostile towards each other. He soon meets the leader of one of the factions named Tars Tarkas (Dafoe) as well as the princess from another faction named Helium (Thoris). After he makes some alliances he sets out to take down Sab Than (West).

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Gone review

Director:
Heitor Dhalia
Cast:
Amanda Seyfried
Daniel Sunjuta
Emily Wickersham
Wes Bently
Rated: PG-13

Interesting name since it will be gone from theaters probably by next week.

“Gone,” a thriller is Amanda Seyfried’s latest film in which she plays a woman named Jill who is haunted by a past, traumatic experience. A few years before the start of the story, Jill was kidnapped and brought out into the middle of the woods by a serial killer but managed to escape. Since then she has lived in paranoia of when he will strike.

It just so happens that one night, he does strike again and this time he makes it personal when he kidnaps Jill’s sister Molly (Wickersham). This sets off Jill on a man hunt for the killer as she goes around picking up clues as to her sister’s captor. She has to be careful, though, as the police are after her as well, believing that she made the whole thing up.

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Act of Valor

Director:
Mike McCoy & Scott Waugh
Cast:
Alex Veadov
Roselyn Sanchez
Nestor Serrano
Emilio Rivera
Rated: R

Should’ve just been called “Call of Duty: The Movie.”

“Act of Valor” is a new film about war,¬†centering on a unit of Navy SEALS,¬†played by actual military personnel. The film starts with them in training back in the states. However duty calls and the team must go across the world using all of their combined efforts and technologies to hunt down and stop a terror cell from striking inside the United States.

The plot of this film is amazingly weak, with it barely having a structured narrative. The film constantly flips back and forth to different locations (with an annoying map display every time it does) making for a very disjointed experience. I said it could’ve been a movie of Call of Duty and the reason is that that’s the way it plays out. There’s the mission and then a cut scene followed by another mission.

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The Secret World of Arrietty review

Director:
Hiromasa Yonebayashi
Cast:
Will Arnett
Bridgit Mendler
David Henrie
Amy Poehler
Rated: G

Surprisingly not directed by Hayao Miyazaki…

The Secret World of Arrietty is the latest film from Studio Ghibli which has been behind such films as “Spirited Away” and “Ponyo.” In this film, the story centers on the character Arrietty, a 14-year-old girl who happens to be a ‘borrower’, which is basically a little person. Her and her family live beneath a large house and borrow things that most people would over look.

The borrowers try to stay out of sight for fear of what would happen if they are discovered. This happens to Arrietty though as a boy who just moved in named Shawn sees her. The two start a bit of a friendship however this causes a bit of an uproar with Arrietty and her family.

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Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance review

Director:
Mark Neveldine & Brian Taylor
Cast:
Nicolas Cage
Violante Placido
Idris Elba
Fergus Riordan
Rated: PG-13

Oh Nicolas, what are we going to do with you.

The latest Marvel film to come to screens is the follow up to 2007’s “Ghost Rider.” “Spirit of Vengeance” picks up a couple years later with the lead character Johnny Blaze (Cage) in a reclusive part of Europe trying to deal with the Ghost Rider curse that has been set upon him.

He finally gets an opportunity to rid the curse when a warrior priest named Moreau (Elba) informs him that a group of monks can exorcise him if he returns a favor of protecting a young boy from the devil. Blaze agrees and sets off to save the boy, along the way though he is hunted by some of the devils henchmen.

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Big Miracle review

Director:
Ken Kwapis
Cast:
John Krasinski
Drew Barrymore
Ted Danson
Dermot Mulroney
Rated: PG

It’s like the Free Willy genre is making a comeback lately.

Big Miracle is a movie inspired by the true events that happened in Alaska in 1988. Three whales became trapped by ice and had no way of getting to the ocean since there was only a single hole for them to get a breath from.

Because of this, news reporter Adam Carlson (Krasinski) does a story on it and attracts many volunteers and attention from the media from across the United States, however with so many coming together disagreements begin to arise. So they have to come together in whatever way they can to stay on task and save the whales.

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Chronicle review

Director:
Josh Trank
Cast:
Dane DeHaan
Alex Russel
Michael B. Jordan
Ashley Hinsaw
Rated: PG-13

It’s very rare that I can see a movie which I will consider one of my favorite of the year as early as February but, “Chronicle” did it.

“Chronicle” tells the story of three teenage high school boys, Andrew (DeHaan), Matt (Russel) and Steve (Jordan). At first, Andrew is a bit of an outcast. Early in the film he decides to start filming everything around him. Eventually he goes to a party with Matt and Steve and the three come across a cavern with a mysterious rock which gives all three of them the power of telekinesis.

After this the three start hanging out more and become very good friends while learning to strengthen and better control their new found powers. During this time they pull some pranks and have some fun however they soon learn about how dangerous they can be as well and Andrew unfortunately begins going down a bad path.

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Man on a Ledge review

Director:
Asger Leth
Cast:
Sam Worthington
Elizabeth Banks
Anthony mackie
Jamie Bell
Genesis Rodriguez
Ed Harris
Rated: PG-13

“Man on a Ledge” follows the story of escaped convict Nick Cassidy (Worthington), who tells everyone he was wrongfully framed for stealing a diamond from rich CEO David Englander (Harris). Because of this, Nick devises a plan to prove his innocence.

He stands out on a ledge of a high building to attract all the attention he can making it seem like he’s going to leap off the edge, meanwhile, his brother Joey (Bell) and his brother’s girlfriend Angie (Rodriguez) break into Englander’s compound to find the diamond and prove Nick’s innocence.

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The Grey review

Director:
Joe Carnahan
Cast:
Liam Neeson
Dallas Roberts
Frank Grillo
Nonso Anozie
Rated: R

The characters Liam Neeson plays just can’t catch a break.

“The Grey” follows a group of men who work for an oil company in Alaska. The main character, Ottway (Neeson), a trained wolf hunter for the company, seems to be one of the outsiders at the oil company and keeps to himself. Eventually, the crew of the company is to be flown back to a major city for a break however during the flight the plane goes down.

Upon regaining his bearings, Ottway begins searching for survivors and finds a handful, he also finds that they are surrounded by a pack of hungry wolves. Ottway soon establishes himself as the leader of the scared group of survivors and begins a journey to try and bring them back to civilization.

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Haywire review

Director:
Steven Soderbergh
Cast:
Gina Carano
Channing Tatum
Michael Angarano
Michael Douglas
Antonio Banderas
Ewan McGregor
Rated: R

It was almost surprising not seeing Angelina Jolie in this.

“Haywire” is the latest film from director Steven Soderbergh, it follows the character Mallory (Carano), a spy for hire who is on the run after being betrayed by the company she works for, in particular, her boss Kenneth (McGregor). Because of this she is forced to leave a small diner abruptly with a young man by the name of Scott (Angarano). During their get away she begins to go into flashbacks about how her life got turned upside down.

The first hour of the film is devoted to telling the flashbacks where the second half goes into how she will try to set the record straight. During this time she continues to be hunted and has to be careful and watch her step.

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