Movie NERD

Join me on this lovely Sunday Evening in July and welcome Movie NERDS own Mike Gee who is reviewing "Broken Arrow". Thank You Mike.

Broken Arrow 1996

Starring Christian Slater as Capt. Riley Hale and John Travolta as Major Vic Deakins, the film is about Major Deakins stealing two nuclear missiles from a B-1 bomber he is flying with Capt. Hale on a training mission in Utah. When Deakins tries to kill Hale when the mission is over his plans start to unravel when Hale ejects. Deakins has to drop the unarmed missiles before he ejects and lets the plane crash. John Travolta plays a great unhinged mastermind and Christian Slater is the underdog that foils his plans and gets the girl (Park Ranger Terry Carmichael played by Samantha Mathis. Good action flick

8/10

Please join me in Welcoming back Michael Jansen from "Sweet Movie Reviews". Michael is reviewing for us the box office smash "Solo: A Star Wars Story". Thanks Michael..

SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY

~ This latest film in the Star Wars franchise, the tenth live action film, tells the story of Han Solo and the events of how we came to know him in Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope.
Alden Ehrenreich plays a young Solo as he tries to find his place in the galaxy ruled by the Empire by finding and teaming up with smugglers. He is as great as Harrison Ford in the role he originated. He is fun and charismatic as he should be. Donald Glover's Lando is also spot on as he Immitates Billy-Dee Williams perfectlt.
The story is not that interesting, I felt like I had seen it all before, therefore Solo lacks originality. Director Ron Howard stepped in as director after the original two stepped down due to creative differences. This can be a worrying sign of a film in trouble but Howard does manage to bring some excellent action to the screen with a highlight being a rotating train heist and gives us some fun moments between characters. He pulled it off. It's cool to see how Solo and Chewbacca met.
The effects, as usual are stunning and the gold tinged cinematography is a nice for change in the Star Wars universe.
It's not the best Star Wars film but more of a renegade fun instalment.

7/10

Reviewed by Michael Jansen

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My guest this evening is my good friend "Movie NERDS" own Karla Blair. Karla is reviewing Netflix's new series "Lost In Space." Thank You Karla!"

The Netflix original remake of the 60’s sci-fi icon “Lost in Space” has a lot of things going for it: Toby Stephens and Molly Parker in the roles of John and Maureen Robinson, not being the least. I’ve always enjoyed these two actors in previous works, and believe that better writing could have made the roles pop for them. With decent enough special effects and plot, and a twist on the Dr. Smith character, well-played by Parker Posey, the show had a lot of potential that simply wasn’t achieved due to flat, and at times, stilted dialogue. I won’t say I didn’t enjoy the updated version of this classic, but it could have definitely used better writing to use the actors to their full abilities and flesh out the characters more. It’s a definite must-see for sci-fi aficionados and I will give it an overall 6.5 out of 10.0.

Scott Forbes from "The Forbes Film Review" is treating us this afternoon to a review of "Beast". A really exceptional film & review. Thanks Scott.

BEAST (9/10)

A small British film set on the Isle of Jersey, Beast is a movie that I’ve noticed has had some great reviews; but will likely have been missed by many due to its lack of promotion and limited number of showings. It’s unfortunate because, in my opinion, Beast is one of the best films to have been released so far this year.

27 year old Moll (Jesse Buckley, ‘War and Peace’) lives at home with her father, who has Alzheimer’s, and Hilary (Geraldine James, ‘Sherlock Holmes’), her psychologically abusive mother. After being upstaged at her own birthday party by one of her family members, Moll decides to leave; and so heads out to a nightclub. The next morning she finds herself in a dangerous situation; but in true fairytale style the rugged Pascal (Johnny Flynn, ‘Clouds of Sils Maria’) becomes her knight in shining armour, coming to the rescue of the damsel in distress. A relationship develops between the couple, much to the disapproval of Moll’s family. Moll’s feelings for Pascal are somewhat compromised however, when he becomes the prime suspect of a series of local child murders.

Knowing very little about this movie beforehand, I truly had no idea what to expect. In the end, what I got was a psychological thriller, with elements of romance and even some aspects of horror mixed in too. I loved the way these genres were blended together so perfectly to create a drama that had me on the edge of my seat for the majority of the film.

It amazes me how often I find myself praising filmmakers for their directorial debuts. There are so many incredible young talents working in the industry today. Beast is the first feature film directed (and written) by Michael Pearce. From both a directorial and writing perspective I thought Pearce hit it out of the park. The way he told this story, keeping the audience continually guessing was masterful. He also threw in so many little clues that kept us second guessing who indeed the titular ‘beast’ was. Was it Pascal? Was it Moll? Was it somebody else? It’s up to you to work that out for yourself.

I have to praise the cinematographer, Benjamin Kracun (For Those in Peril), for using Jersey’s natural lighting and locations so beautifully. The stark contrast between the stunning visuals and the horrific plot worked brilliantly as a way of unsettling the audience. In addition, the score by Jim Williams, (Raw), added so much to the tension of the film. So often with horrors/thrillers the soundscape plays such a major role in creating a certain atmosphere which sends people to the edge of their seats. That’s exactly what Williams’ score did to me. He nailed this.

In terms of the acting, I don’t know if I can speak highly enough about Jesse Buckley’s performance; which if it does not receive a BAFTA nomination I’ll be furious. In 2008, Buckley controversially finished as the runner-up to Jodie Prenger on Andrew Lloyd Webber’s singing completion, ‘I’d Do Anything’ – a show where the winner earned the role of Nancy in Lord Webber’s new production of the musical ‘Oliver!’. Incidentally, Samantha Barks (who brilliantly played Eponine in the 2012 movie version of ‘Les Miserables’) finished 3rd on this show. I actually had money on her to win it. Despite failing to win the show and land the role, Buckley went on to be a huge success on the stage anyway; and has also appeared on TV in ‘War and Peace’ and ‘Taboo’. Beast is her first feature film role however, and going by this performance it certainly won’t be her last. Everything about her performance wowed me. From the sweet innocent girl she appears to be at the start of the movie, to the primal, animalistic wreck she becomes later on, she just conveys every aspect of the character so naturally. It’s going to take something extraordinary to knock her off the top spot of my leading actresses of the year list.

Another great performance came from Geraldine James, whose words, as Hilary, cut like a knife through the heart of Moll. Although she may appear to be a prim and proper lady, the way she treats her daughter is horrible. Although we come to learn why she says some of the nasty things she says; the way she uses something that happened when Moll was younger to psychologically abuse her is outrageous. I hated that character so much, which was largely down to the way James expertly played the part.

Johnny Flynn was pretty good as the leading male of the movie; however, next to the incredible performances of Buckley and James, I did think he paled in comparison. Had his performance come even close to matching up to that of Buckley’s I’d probably have rated Beast 10/10. It’s the only reason I can think of not to give Beast a perfect score.

Unfortunately, Beast’s run in cinemas is coming to an end. There may be a few cinemas still showing it, but even if there are it won’t be out for much longer. Whether you can find a cinema where it’s still playing, or you have to wait for it to be released on DVD, I implore you to check it out! If this isn’t in my top 10 films at the end of the film year, I’ll be shocked.

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Please welcome back Ogreboy from Filmtalk who is Reviewing for us Tim Burtons "Corpse Bride"

Tim Burton's Corpse Bride review
By Ogreboy

12 years after the animated classic The Nightmare Before Christmas Tim Burton along with Mike Johnson directed Corpse Bride. It follows the story of Victor Van Dort who is set to marry Victoria Everglot to bring two wealthy families together. When Victor is practicing how he plans to propose to Victoria one day in the woods he places his ring on what he thinks is a fallen tree stick and it turns out to be the hand of Emily a corpse who brings Victor to the land of the dead thinking he is supposed to marry her while he's trying to find a way back home he starts gaining feelings for Emily and they discover she was murdered soon Victor has to choose between staying alive with Victoria or being with Emily which would mean he would have to die. The voice cast is pretty good here. Johnny Depp does the voice of Victor and he does a good job. Helena Bonham Carter voices Emily and even in voice acting the pair have great chemistry which we get to see play out in their next film Sweeney Todd also directed by Burton. Emily Watson voices Victoria and she fits the role well. The rest of the cast includes Tracey Ullman and Paul Whitehouse as Victor's parents Nell and William Van Dort, Joanna Lumely and Albert Finney as Maudeline and Finis Everglot Victoria's snobbish parents. Michael Gough as Elder Gutknecht a skeleton who helps Victor and Emily leave the land of the dead. Christopher Lee as Pastor Galswell who is hired to marry Victor and Victoria. And Richard E. Grant does the voice of the villain Barkis Bittern. All of the supporting cast fit their roles well. The screenplay was written by frequent Burton collaborators John August, Coraline Thompson, and Pamela Pettler they all did a decent job and the story is pretty good. It has a slow start but picks up pretty quick during the second half of the movie. While the characters are pretty likable none of them get real good background stories except Emily does some explaining how she died. The music and score in this movie are done with Danny Elfman who is also a frequent collaborator with Tim Burton. The songs are pretty catchy and the score works well for the movie with Burton's signature weirdness and dark tone. The movie isn't bad but it is one of my least favorites of the movies Johnny Depp and Tim Burton have done together the pacing for me was kind of off with the first 30 to 40 minutes being pretty slow and the rest going by pretty fast it's not a terrible movie the animation is cool and the cast works well and it has some good music but the story was kind of slow and disappointing to me. 6.5/10

Please join me in welcoming back Ruben from "The Ruby Tuesday" who is reviewing for us The Netflix Original Series "Safe". Thank you Ruben.

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Please join me in welcoming back my bestie Karla Blair who is reviewing the Amazon TV Series "Britannia" for us. Thanks doll.

Review for Britannia: I’m just over halfway through the first series and will admit that the show is growing on me. I’m a big Roman and British history fan and find this particular story very appealing. Not much about the Druids is known historically so a story-teller has pretty much free reign. The locations in the Czech Republic and Wales are an excellent backdrop for the story of the Roman conquest of the British isles 90 years after Julius Caesar himself withdrew from the attempt. Mystical, sixties-style acid trips notwithstanding, Britannia is worth a watch for fans of ancient history.

8/10

Good Morning. Please join me in welcoming back Ronnie from "Movie Gems". Ronnie is reviewing the 90's classic "The Dark Half."

Movie Gems 90's Flashback ...

The Dark Half (1993).

The Dark Half, a supernatural horror-thriller, comes with great credentials: it is directed by George A. Romero, is based on a Stephen King novel of the same name and features Timothy Hutton, the consummate performer, in the main role. However, the film appears to have never been embraced by the horror community and has somewhat slipped into cinematic oblivion.

When Thad Beaumont (Hutton) was a child, he had an operation to remove a tumour from his brain. During the operation it was discovered that far from being a tumor, the growth was a twin brother of Thad's that never developed. Years pass and Thad becomes a successful author, writing his serious books under his own name and his pulp money-makers under the pseudonum "George Stark". When blackmailed

by someone who has discovered authorship secret, Thad publically "buries" George Stark. From that point on, Thad increasingly becomes the prime suspect in a series of gruesome murders.

It is not easy to explain why The Dark Half failed to hit the spot with the horror crowd and especially King fans as the direction is insightful, the script is very good and the acting is perfect. Hutton in the dual role is thoroughly convincing as the two very disparate characters; his interpretation of George Stark (his "dark half") is downright chilling. Throw in some effective, well placed scares, a few gory sequences and a genuinely creepy atmosphere and the ingredients are all there for an impactful horror flick.

Perhaps in the fullness of time The Dark Half will fare better on reappraisal. In the meantime for those who missed it: it is worth checking out!

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Welcome Back Peter from *IMHO* who is reviewing Coppola's "Apocolypse Now REDUX" one of my favorite all-time movies. Thank You Peter..

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Welcome Back to Michael Jansen of Sweet Movie Reviews who is reviewing a wonderful film "Love,Simon". Thank you Michael. .

THE BEST ROM-COM DRAMA OF THE 21ST CENTURY!

LOVE, SIMON

Reviewed by Michael Jansen

Love, Simon centers around Simon Spier (Nick Robinson from Jurassic World), a closeted gay teenage boy in high school who is forced to balance his friends, his family, and the blackmailer threatening to out him to the entire school, while simultaneously attempting to discover the identity of the anonymous classmate whom he has fallen in love with online.

Sometimes a film comes along that you are so excited about that you hope it meets or exceeds your expectations. Love, Simon did this for me on a great film level and a personal level. I related to Simon having to go through his coming out experience as I had to do the same thing, albeit withouth the social media blackmail. Nick Robinson as Simon is excellent in this complex and broad performance. You feel everything he goes through, I think it's something about Robinson's eyes, he draws you in with them.

Another reason this film is so personal to me is that it's the kind of film I want to make as a filmmaker. I want to tell strong stories about leading gay characters and gay film is my passion. Love, Simon is the first gay film about a young gay character produced by a big film studio and released widley. It's a major and important step in the LGBT film industry, a confidence booster and an exciting period in film as a whole.

The film itself has a beautiful story at it's heart, as Simon falls in love online with "Blue" you hope that he finally meets him and they hook up, but the fun is Simon trying to guess what guy at his school he is talking to. Performances all around are great. Jennifer Garner and Josh Duhamel are great as Simon's loving parents. As is Katherine Langford and Keiynan Lonsdale, two great Australian actors who play Simon's friends. Simon is not perfect as he has to betray his friends in order to keep his "big ass secret". Director Greg Berlanti keeps us interested and very entertained the whole way through to the film's perfect feel great ending. The film is an emotional roller coaster.

I recommend you see this film and tell everyone about it. Take your friends, your family and everyone. it might be an eye opening experience for some and is a fun feel good movie for everyone.
Love, Simon is the greatest Rom-Com Drama of the 21st Century!

10/10

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Welcome back (Third times the charm!) Ruben Shaw from "The Ruby Tuesday." This weekend Ruben is reviewing Season 2 of "A Series Of Unfortunate Events." Enjoy!

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Please give a warm welcome to my next guest reviewer Filmtalk's Ogreboy. Ogreboy is also a You Tuber and has his own Facebook page. Today he is reviewing for us Speed 2 cruise control. Thank you!

Speed 2: Cruise Control review
By Ogreboy
In the 1997 sequel to 1994's hit action film Speed Annie and her new boyfriend Officer Alex Shaw who is a cop decide to go on a Caribbean cruise when John Geiger, a man who programmed all the computers on the ship decides to hack in to the computers and make the ship set sail to run into a big tank ship. He is wanting revenge for being fired after getting sick while helping create the ship. Annie and Alex have to figure out how to stop the ship and Geiger from killing everyone on board the ship. The cast includes Jason Patrick as Alex, Willem Dafoe as John Geiger, and Sandra Bullock reprising her role as Annie. They do the best with what they're given with Dafoe being the best part of the cast. The story is pretty slow paced although the last 30 minutes was pretty decent the 126 minutes feel a lot longer and if the movie had been trimmed down about 20 minutes it would've probably been better. The director of the first movie Jan De Bont who was also coming off the success of Twister the year before does ok with this one the special effects for the most part are pretty awesome with lots of good practical effects and little CGI the scene where the ship crashes on land is probably the best part of the movie and the sound editing was done very well with this one. The cinematography is done by Jack N. Green who did the cinematography for Twister and the Oscar nominated Unforgiven while it's not as good as those films the cinematography isn't bad in this one. This is considered one of the worst sequels of all time and I don't fully agree although it's certainly nothing special and could've been so much better without Keanu Reeves the movie lost a lot of appeal and Jason Patrick just wasn't as good but the characters aren't as good either in this one with John Geiger being the best written one. This is an ok movie but I was pretty disappointed I had never heard anything good about it but I didn't think it would be as bad as most people say and while it's not the worst movie sequel ever made its definitely not the best.

5/10

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Please Welcome back my guest Scott Forbes from "The Forbes Film Review" Scott is reviewing "Unsane" a film I am very much looking forward to seeing. Sit back folks and enjoy the ride! Thank You Scott.

UNSANE (9/10)

 

Last night I had the privilege to watch a preview screening of the new Steven Soderbergh movie Unsane. The ‘Logan Lucky’ director continues his post-retirement filmmaking with what is apparently his first horror movie; and it’s amazing!

Sawyer Valentini (Claire Foy, ‘The Crown’) has a stalker; which is obviously a scary situation. When she tries to get help by speaking to someone she finds herself being involuntarily committed to a psychiatric facility. She is adamant that a mistake has been made because she’s not crazy and doesn’t belong there. But is she, and does she?

Unsane is a psychological thriller set in a psychiatric facility. That immediately brings to mind films like ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’, ‘Trapped and Deceived’, ‘Girl, Interrupted’, ‘Changeling’, and ‘Gothika’. I think the setting works brilliantly for a film of this genre because it allows the filmmaker to explore things in a way where you don’t know what’s real and what’s not. It not only casts doubt in the character’s mind; but as an audience we can watch a film like this and wonder “is she actually crazy?” I love that!

I found this movie to be an extremely tense experience. I was never fully sure that I knew where the film was going, so it had me on edge the entire time. There are some twists and developments along the way which I enjoyed very much. The film does flip between thriller and horror in a way that satisfied my cinematic taste perfectly. As much as I want to discuss specific things that happen, I really want to remain vague on events of the movie, because I think this film benefits from knowing as little about the plot as possible.

Claire Foy is an actress I became aware of in the Netflix series ‘The Crown’ – which is simply one of the greatest TV shows ever, no arguments! After seeing her for so long as Her Madge, and then in a fairly similar role in Andy Serkis’ ‘Breathe’, it was fantastic to see Foy in a playing a character like Sawyer Valentini. In contrast to the reserved, ladylike characters she’s recently become known her, Unsane allowed Foy show off her range as an actress, playing a woman who may or may not be mentally disturbed. Her American accent did slip at times; but her performance was so good, and I was so gripped by the film, that I forgave her for that.

The cast around Foy wasn’t bad; although it was clear that they were not in her weight class in terms of acting ability. That is apart from one big name cameo that randomly appeared half way through the movie. Obviously I won’t say who it was, but if I’m being honest I think their presence slightly weakened the movie for me. Momentarily I was too busy wondering what they were doing in this film that it slightly distracted me from the film itself.

Something which may be of interest to some of you is that this film was shot entirely using an iPhone7. What’s so impressive about that is that had I not known beforehand, I would not have been able to tell the difference between this and any other low budget indie flick. I guess this means anyone can make a commercial movie now, right? Well...maybe if you can also write a great script, get your hands on high quality audio equipment, and amongst other things, hire a couple of Golden Globe winning actors to perform in your movie. If you can do all that, as well as own an iPhone, then maybe you can make a movie like this.

Hopefully this review has got you intrigued to see this movie. You won’t have to wait too long either, as it will be released (in the UK at least) tomorrow (Friday 23rd March). If you like a film that can mess with your mind, and slightly scare you in the process, then I highly recommend checking out Unsane. Definitely one of the best films of the year so far!

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Please give a VERY warm Movie NERD welcome to one of my absolute favorite You Tubers Ty from "SirTyJensen". Ty is reviewing "Tomb Raider"(2018). Sit back and enjoy the show.

Lara Croft, the fiercely independent daughter of a missing adventurer, must push herself beyond her limits when she finds herself on the island where her father disappeared. ..... "Tomb Raider" (PG-13, 1:58) is a reboot of the erstwhile Angelina Jolie franchise(2001,2003) films.

A big welcome to my next guest Movie Gems Ronnie Clements. I just love Movie Gems and films from The 70's..80's & 90's. I know you'll enjoy this review of "The Pit" and thanks Ronnie!

Movie Gems 80's Flashback ...

The Pit (1981).

Weird, creepy, surreal and downright "WTF!", this not particularly well known, Canadian horror piece is insane ... insanely great that is!

An absolute "must see", particularly for 80's horror fans!

Review ...

No Spoilers!

As a student of film who has studied both the 70's & 80's horror genre in detail, I am embarrassed to admit that I only came across this film fairly recently. Apparently it has a substantial cult following amongst horror movie buffs. I am not in the least surprised!

Horror films (and thrillers too) have occasionally featured kids as the villains and sometimes this premise works and other times (perhaps most) it just doesn't. I can think of films like The Other (1972), The Omen (1976), Bloody Birthday (1981) and The Paper Boy (1994) where the premise of the evil kid is executed superbly. In fact Johnny McFarley (played by Marc Marut) in The Paper Boy is one of my all time favourite, boy villains. However, Jamie (Sammy Snyders) in The Pit makes Johnny look like a bit of a "pussy". Sorry, Johnny!

Twelve year old Jamie (Snyders) is a very unusual young man who is grappling with the day-to-day issues that inevitably arise as the pre-teen years make way for the hormonal teen ones. Friendless and coming across as pretty weird to most people he encounters, Jamie spends his time with the reptiles in his terrarium, his stuffed bear (Teddy) and a half dozen or so troglodytes that live in a pit in the middle of the woods not far from his home.

Let's also just say that young Jamie is more than a little curious about the female anatomy. When his parents go away and a new, young and alluring housekeeper, Sandy (Jeannie Elias) is assigned to look after him, things get very interesting! 

But ... that is no where near the whole story. Teddy, Jamie's only real companion, isn’t just your average bear either: he has special "powers" and, when it comes to Jamie, those "powers" are not used for the forces of good.

To ramp things up a few notches, the troglodytes in the pit need feeding and poor Jamie is running out of money to buy meat for them ... and ... "they don't eat chocolate bars"! So ... Teddy has an idea for Jamie to solve the problem!

Directed by Lew Lehman, The Pit is low-budget, slightly corny horror at its absolute whacky best. Though the acting is somewhat uneven in the piece, Elias as the housekeeper/babysitter is very good and Snyders as Jamie is exceptional. He manages to crisply control his performance so that while we feel extreme annoyance with him we also feel sorry for him.

The Pit is beautifully lit and shot (the Blu Ray print is stunning!) though the editing is a tad choppy and the score is sometimes "inappropriate" and at other times a bit jarring.

All in all The Pit is a great contribution to 80's horror and stands apart from the slashers that ruled in that decade. In many ways it is a one-off, "WTF", little horror film that serious horror hounds will definitely enjoy!

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I'd love to welcome my next guest Angelika Ocampo from "Chubby Pug Reviews". Angelika is reviewing for us this evening the hit smash horror film "Get Out."So sit back and enjoy and thanks girl!

Now that Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) and his girlfriend, Rose (Allison Williams), have reached the meet-the-parents milestone of dating, she invites him for a weekend getaway upstate with Missy and Dean. What ensues is shocking.

Join me in welcoming Movie NERD'S own Karla Blair who is reviewing Marvels Jessica Jones-Season 2 for us. Karla is a close friend & My "Right hand". Thank you doll for doing this for us. ENJOY!

Jessica Jones Season 2

Season 2 of Netflix’s Marvel franchise, Jessica Jones, has finally been released. I’m about halfway through the season, and there are a few observations to this point: while Jessica seems to be gaining depth to her own personal character, the season has been slow to gain momentum due to the lack of a cohesive villain, like last season’s Kilgrave. Admittedly, Kilgrave did set the bar rather high for a comparable antagonist this season. I am enjoying Jeri Hogarth’s (Carrie Ann Moss) ice queen performances and a glimpse into a more relatable side of Jessica. So far, about seven episodes in, I would give the season a solid 7 out of 10. There still may be some surprises in store though!!

7/10

Join me in welcoming back Ruben from "The Ruby Tuesday" channel on You Tube. Today we will be taking a look at the smash hit and Oscar Nominee "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing,Missouri". I know you'll enjoy this and much thanks Ruben!

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is a 2017 crime drama film written, produced, and directed by Martin McDonagh. It stars Frances McDormand as a mother who rents three billboards to call attention to her daughter's unsolved murder. Woody Harrelson and Sam Rockwell appear in supporting roles.

Good Morning! I'm very excited to have my next guest here- Michael Jansen from "Sweet Movie Reviews" who is reviewing a film I can't wait to see "Game Night". What a great way to start the weekend and Thank You Michael..

GAME NIGHT, FUN NIGHT!

GAME NIGHT

Reviewed by Michael Jansen

Game Night is a black comedy-action film directed by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein (Horrible Bosses). The film stars Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams and follows a group of friends who meet regularly for thier game night, and one night they find themselves investigating an actual murder mystery.

Game Night has a great and funny premise and it's the actors that make this film rise up to be better then the average silly comedy. The comedic timing and humour is delivered well especially by McAdams and Bateman. I'd like to see McAdams in more comedy she is one of my favourite actors. Jesse Plemons plays his creepy neighbour with great deadpan in his scene stealing moments.

Some of the jokes and references don't land but most do, especially the physical humour. The story is predictable in respect to the characters and thier motivations but it did offer some twists with the actual game and what was real or not. This is where the film gets a lot of fun out of it's idea.

The directors have included some great action set pieces in the film and some cool use of the camera. I like how some of the shots in the film were actually designed like pieces moving on a game board. Game Night is a fun movie!

7/10

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Peter from *IMHO* Movie Review is reviewing for us "Black Panther". Peter is a super knowledgeable guy about Cinema.I enjoy both his Reviews and his humor. I know you will too.

Next up is my friend Scott Forbes from "The Forbes Film Review". Scott is reviewing 12 Strong. I really look forward to Scott's reviews each week and I know you will too after reading this.

12 STRONG (8/10)

 

 

 

12 Strong is based on the inspirational true story of a group of men who have come to be known as the horse soldiers. In the immediate aftermath of the terrorist attacks on 9/11, 12 soldiers volunteered to go to Afghanistan, becoming the first US troops to retaliate against the Taliban.

For whatever reason, I almost let this one pass me by. Nobody has really been talking it up. In fact nobody’s really been talking about it at all. I think that’s unfortunate because this was a movie I liked a lot and think deserves much more attention than it’s received.

 

The story wasn’t one I’d heard of before. That’s probably until recently the mission was classified. This movie tells us about these 12 brave men who felt so passionately about what happened to their country on that fateful day that they pushed to be sent overseas to get some revenge. It’s an emotion that is completely understandable and a motivation that would be essential if they were to ensure success.

 

Some people might argue that this is just another action movie where Americans go somewhere, kill some enemies and come away looking like heroes; and they’re right. However, this is more than just a film saying “Look at us. We’re American. We’re awesome!” I thought this was a film about genuine bravery, camaraderie and relationships than span cultures, religion and even language.

 

Two of these relationships I refer to involve one of the American soldiers and an Afghan responsible for helping to look after them. Firstly we have the relationship between Captain Mitch Nelson (Chris Hemsworth, ‘Thor’) and General Dostum (Navid Nagahban, ‘American Sniper’). Nelson and Dostum were the respective leaders of their men. Dostum’s warriors were tasked with helping the Americans to find and attack the Taliban – who were a common enemy. Dostum didn’t respect Nelson, and the pair had different ideas about the best way to conduct the mission. However as we see them spend more time together and learn about each other, a special bond develops which was awesome.

 

Najeeb (Arshia Mandavi) a child with a machine gun assigned to watch Ben’s back. At first the kid seems to be like an annoying pet that won’t stop following him around. Eventually Ben comes to care for this kid a lot however and it’s actually really sweet.

 

The acting performances across the board I thought were fine. Hemsworth and Nagahban had the biggest roles and were very convincing. I think – after ‘Rush’ – this is probably my favourite non-Thor Hemsworth performance. Michael Shannon (The Shape of Water) and Michael Pena (Ant-Man) were also really good. Potentially the character development could have been a little better; but at least there was some character development; and a look back to the nervous loved ones at home – something sorely missing from the slightly disappointing Oscar nominee ‘Dunkirk’.

 

The film’s mains strengths however were in the sight and sound. The cinematography in this movie is one of my favourites of the past year. The stunning landscapes, the use of silhouettes, the burning ashes floating through the air – it was glorious film to look at. I also thought the score was majestic, but at the same time understated. Unlike Hans Zimmer’s score for ‘Dunkirk’, this was able to be just as powerful without the need to stand out. Perhaps the blame for that should be place more with Christopher Nolan that Zimmer, but the point remains the same. In addition I’m baffled why the sound department have been overlooked at the Oscars, because with all the action of the guns, bombs, rockets, helicopters, etc I thought the work that went into this movie’s sounds was so good that it was deserving of recognition.

 

I know I’ve put down ‘Dunkirk’ a couple of times in this review; but Nolan fanatics don’t be too mad. I still think Dunkirk is a technically well made film. I just think that if you’re going to make a war movie that spends the vast amount of its run time on battle scenes, then this is the way to do it. I know I’m beginning to get a reputation for being a guy with unpopular opinions, and this will certainly add to that; but I am just being honest. Both films looked and sounded great. The difference is that this one had some heart and gave us characters we could actually care about.

 

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Ruben from The Ruby Tuesday reviews the controversial Netflix film Cloverfield Paradox, from producer JJ Abrams and bought from Paramount. The third part in the Cloverfield movie series.

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