Unbroken review

Director:
Angelina Jolie
Cast:
Jack O;Connell
Domhnall Gleeson
Takamasa Ishihara
Rated: PG-13

“Unbroken” tells the true life story of World War II veteran and Olympic athlete Louis Zamperini (O’Connell). Following his competing at the 1936 Olympics, Zamperini joined the war effort and served as part of a bomber crew. On one of the missions Zamperini’s plane fails and only he and two other members of the crew survive. The three are left to survive in the vast Pacific ocean for weeks upon weeks until they are spotted by the Japanese armed forces.

The film then shows Zamperini’s time in a prisoner of war camp in Japan, where he comes into contact with a strict, brutal guard nicknamed “The Bird” (Ishihara).

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When the Game Stands Tall review

Director:

  • Thomas Carter

Cast:

  • Jim Caviezel
  • Alexander Ludwig
  • Michael Chiklis
  • Laura Dern
  • Matthew Daddario
  • Rated: PG

The film follows Bob Ladouceur (Caviezel), a coach of a high school football team which achieved the longest win streak in football at any level. The movie begins with business as usual for the team. They win another state championship and everything seems to be going fine.

In the offseason, though, tragedy strikes on more than one occasion. Ladouceur gets a heart attack from pushing himself so hard and one of the teammates set to graduate and go on to the University of Oregon football program is shot and killed. To make matters worse, at the beginning of the next season, the team loses… TWICE!

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Draft Day review

Director:
Ivan Reitman
Cast:
Kevin Costner
Jennifer Garner
Chadwick Boseman
Josh Pence
Denis Leary
Griffin Newman
Rated: PG-13

Why do good concepts in movies always have to be dragged down by useless subplots.

“Draft Day” takes place on the most important time for the National Football League offseason. Players from college are evaluated, ESPN and NFL Network have round the clock coverage of mock drafts and quarterback mechanics are analyzed. The film itself follows Sonny Weaver (Costner), a general manager for the Cleveland Browns, and any football fan knows that’s not the best job to have.

The movie picks up the morning of the first round of the draft with Sonny questioning what he will do. The team needs to be rebuilt but it will take some trading and dealing on Sonny’s part to get it done. On top of that, the main character is also dealing with a turbulent relationship with co-worker Ali (Garner) and is mourning the death of his father who was previously the coach of the Browns.

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Grudge Match review

Director:
Peter Segal
Cast:
Sylvester Stallone
Robert De Niro
Kevin Hart
Alan Arkin
Rated: PG-13
Trailer

Stallone drinks eggs and tries to punch meat in this movie. Could the jokes be anymore obvious?

“Grudge Match” tells the tale of two boxers, Henry ‘Razor’ Sharp (Stallone) and Billy ‘The Kid’ McDonnen (De Niro). Thirty years ago the two fought a pair of fights against each other, with both of them taking a win. When it came time for a third bout, though, Sharp decided to retire and get out of the boxing world.

This film suffers from simply having far too much going on. If it was just a story of two old fighters wanting to lay it on the line to prove who was better it would have been fine. The problem is that there are so many sub-plots that it makes a person’s head spin.

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Rush review

Director Ron Howard, whose previous work includes “Apollo 13” and “Frost/Nixon,” returns with “Rush.” The film is a chronicle of a real life rivalry that developed between Formula 1 racers James Hunt, played by Chris Hemsworth and Niki Lauda played by Daniel Bruhl.

The film shows how both drivers got started in the lower ranks of the motorsport and through time worked to become two of the biggest names in the industry. During the 1970s, both men’s private lives are delved into, revealing what else was really driving them. The movie culminates with the 1976 world championship for Formula 1 in which they both compete for the title.

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Turbo review

Director:
David Soren
Cast:
Ryan Reynolds
Paul Giamatti
Michael Pena
Samuel Jackson
Ken Jeong
Michelle Rodriguez
Maya Rudolph
Rated: PG

What a random concept to base a film around.

“Turbo” follows the title character played by Ryan Reynolds. Turbo is a garden snail living an uneventful life with his brother, Chet (Giamatti) near a number of tomato plants. Turbo has dreams of being fast and racing in the Indy 500, however, obviously, he has little chance to do so. That is until an accident that has Turbo falling into a car engine and getting blasted with the NOS that is seen in “Fast and Furious” franchise movies.

After this happens, Turbo inherits super speed that leaves a trail of blue light behind him. Through a series of events, Turbo and Chet come into contact with a group of other snails led by Whiplash (Jackson) as well as a taco vendor named Tito (Pena) who wants to race the super snail in the actual Indy 500.

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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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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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Real Steel review

Director:
Shawn Levy
Cast:
Hugh Jackman
Dakota Goyo
Evangeline Lilly
Hope Davis
Rated: PG-13

Insert your “Rock’em Sock’em Robots” joke here!

Real Steal follows the story of Charlie Kenton (Jackman) who living in a future world where the big fighting sport is actually robot boxing instead of human boxing.

Kenton at one time was a great boxer himself and a contender for the title however once the fight game changed he started to go into a bit of a spiral downwards and now has any robot he can get, fight in any match up he can get.

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