Month: July 2014

Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

I made a prediction before Guardians of the Galaxy was released. I thought that it would be the best of the Marvel movies, but would also make the least amount of money. Its heroes are, after all, largely unknown quantities. While someone like Iron Man is a household name — or at least, was closer to one than anyone in this branch of the comics — Drax the Destroyer is not. I no longer think that. I think it will make lots and lots of money. Oh, and it is the best Marvel movie so far. I wanted to watch it again right away. The film takes place in space, and follows a rag-tag team of criminals who just happen to find themselves caught in a plot involving one of those Infinity Stones with which the last Thor movie was so concerned. Their leader, if you can call him that, is Peter “Star Lord” Quill (Chris Pratt). He’s a thief who was contracted to steal an orb containing the stone. A human-like raccoon named Rocket (voice of Bradley Cooper) and its accomplice, a tree creature named Groot (Vin Diesel), found a bounty with Peter’s name on it. So they try to capture him. Meanwhile, the adoptive daugter of Thanos, Gamora (Zoe Saldana) also wants the stone (to betray her “family”). They all wind up in a prison, by slightly...

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Hick (2012)

I don’t get it. I don’t understand the point of Hick. I don’t know if it has one that’s hidden so deeply that without inside knowledge — perhaps of the novel on which it is based — we’ll never discover it, or if it’s missing altogether, but I didn’t get anything out of it. The film follows around a neglected girl who runs into nothing but bad people before eventually … I don’t want to spoil it, but nothing much happens and nobody grows or learns from the hardships faced during the course of the film. Hick stars Chloë Grace Moretz as Luli, a 13-year-old whose father is a drunk and whose mother never seems to be around. An early scene shows her birthday, held at a bar, where she receives a gun as a present. The bartender soon has to stop her father from driving her home, as he gets completely hammered. This is the type of girl who spends more time with the TV than is healthy. One day, an advertisement for Las Vegas pops up. To this 13-year-old, Vegas seems like a place that will fix all her troubles. So, with a notebook, pencil, and gun in hand, she starts walking to Vegas. Note: she lives several states over — Nebraska, if I remember correctly. So, she starts hitchhiking. The first person she encounters is Eddie...

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Scooby-Doo! WrestleMania Mystery (2014)

According to the internet, there have been 21 direct-to-video Scooby-Doo films. No, really. I’ve seen maybe two of them before sitting down with Scooby-Doo! WrestleMania Mystery. Yes, the only reason I watched this one is because of its subject matter. In case you don’t know, I’m a pretty big WWE fan. I felt compelled to watch this. I also enjoyed the Scooby-Doo TV show as a kid. So there. That’s the background I bring into this review. You needed to know this. This was not just padding. No, sir. Or ma’am. The film’s plot involves Scooby (Frank Welker) and the gang — Fred (Welker), Daphne (Grey Delisle), Velma (Mindy Cohn), and Shaggy (Matthew Lillard) — being invited to the as-yet fictional WWE City, where all the WWE Superstars live and where all WWE events take place. Okay, it’s not at all like this in real life, but whatever. It’s soon to be WrestleMania season, which is the WWE’s biggest show of the year. But, unfortunately, there’s an evil fire bear running rampant. Also, the WWE Championship belt gets stolen. It’s up to our heroes, along with select WWE Superstars, to find out who is behind the bear — if it’s not actually some evil fire bear and is a man in a costume — and save WrestleMania. For those who care, the Superstars who appear in the movie, and...

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Airplane II: The Sequel (1982)

Does Airplane II: The Sequel need to exist? No. Should it exist? Probably not. Is it still kind of funny, especially once we hit the midway point and it finds its grove? Yeah, I suppose it is. No, it’s not going to match or surpass the original, but it’s hard to deny that there are a good number of laughs to be found in Airplane II, and that the same type of comedy found in the first one is prevalent this time around, too. In fact, one might say that type of humor is exactly the same as this one. Most of the jokes are the same, the situations are nearly identical, and save for the airplane’s destination, the plot is an exact match to the first film. I mean, this time around we’re in the near future and the moon has been colonized — and is where our ship is headed — but apart from that, you can just take the plot of Airplane! and stick a number “2” on the script and you’ve got the same movie. Many jokes are recycled from the original — and not in a meta, self-aware way — but they were so funny before and it turns out they’re still funny now, even if they’re not the freshest jokes out there. The plot: Ted Striker (Robert Hays) saved the world in Airplane!...

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Napoleon Dynamite (2004)

 Every once in a while, there comes along a movie that makes the viewer go “That was for me.” This film definitely is the case for 2004’s surprise hit “Napoleon Dynamite”. This little film became a phenomenon during that summer, as pretty much everyone saw it and fell in love with it. But why? There many reasons behind that question; probably too many to give a definitive answer, yet the one that comes off the top of my head is that it represents high school to a good effect. Though there are some problems with the movie, it still has a reputation of something that needs to be seen at least once in your lifetime. “Napoleon Dynamite” is one of those movies that is for a certain audience, as well as being a good comedy to go along as well. The story involves an awkward teenager named Napoleon (Jon Heder) whose life just wants to go smoothly, for the most part. Napoleon has his brother Kip (Aaron Ruell) and his uncle Rico (Jon Gries) getting in the way. He also has two friends that are exactly like him named Pedro (Efren Ramirez) and Deb (Tina Majorino). So when it comes to making friends dances, and even running school elections, Napoleon must use his skills to gain popularity. “Napoleon Dynamite” is, first and foremost a great comedy. The writing by...

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