Sunday, September 30, 2012

Won't Back Down

I'm going to make this review very short. Was in the hospital on Wenesday and I'm still not feeling too good. But I still wanted to post this. Sorry :( Hopefully the next review will be longer.

Won't Back Down is about two women- Jamie (Maggie Gyllenhaal), a hard working single mother who's daughter is dyslexic, and Nona (Viola Davis) a teacher in Jamie's daughter's school and also a mother. The school is failing to say the least. The two of them decide to try and take over the school and provide a better future for the children.

This movie wasn't all that great to be honest. It's heart was in the right place but it wasn't well put together. It felt rushed at times and other times it just seemed to drag. The only thing that's preventing me from giving it a lower rating is the strong performances by Viola Davis and Maggie Gyllenhaal.

I think this movie might've done better had it been on Lifetime rather than a theatrical release.

My Rating: 6/10

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Trouble With The Curve

It's always interesting going to a Clint Eastwood movie. At the showing I went to Friday night there were several older women fangirling over him. It was pretty amusing. I mean, I'm a big fan of his work and while I have a thing for older men even I have a limit. Moving on.

In Trouble With The Curve, Clint Eastwood plays Gus, an aging baseball scout for the Atlanta Braves who's losing his eyesight. And while he keeps this a secret from everyone, the people around him can tell something is wrong. A friend of his named Pete (John Goodman), who also works in the organization, is worried and convinces Gus' estranged daughter Mickey (Amy Adams) to go with her father on one last trip to scout a promising young player. Of course, Gus isn't to thrilled about this. He and Mickey obviously have issues. Along the way they run into Johnny, a young former player whom Gus had scouted but due to an injury no longer plays and now is a baseball scout himself. Johnny really respects and admires Gus and eventually is attracted to Mickey (of course).

While I enjoyed this film for the most part, this is not Clint's best role. Don't get me wrong, his performance was good, it's just he's such an accomplished actor and I've seen him do better. The best part of the movie for me was his scenes with Amy Adams (whom I've been a fan of since I saw her in Enchanted). They had such great chemistry and I enjoyed seeing them interact with each other. You really felt like they were father and daughter.

I even enjoyed Amy's scenes with Justin Timberlake. Very sweet. Honestly I think I like him more as an actor than I do a singer.

I assumed for the longest time that Clint directed this (since lately he's only appeared in movies that he dircted) but as it turns out it was dircted by Robert Lorenz. He's worked on many movies with Clint over the years, but this is his first time directing. And considering this, I think he did an okay job.

There are some flaws with the movie however. The dialog at times was absolutely terrible. The plot was pretty predictable. And I wish they had gone and developed certain storylines better. I won't spoil anything, but towards the end there's this kind of big reveal that just comes out of nowhere. Well, maybe not nowhere but they never really gave much indication earlier in the film.

Overall though, I had a good time watching this. I think if you're a fan of baseball and/or Clint Eastwood you'll like this. Everyone else, maybe not. I'd still give it a chance though.

My Rating: 7/10

Saturday, September 1, 2012


Well, I'm definitely going to be having nice Tom Hardy dreams tonight! Lawless was amazing!

And no, I'm not just saying that because Tom is in it. Honestly :p

Lawless takes place in Franklin, Virginia in the early 1930's and is based on the true story (although, I'm not sure how much is actually true and how much they made up for the movie) of the Bondurant brothers- Forrest (Tom Hardy), Howard (Jason Clarke), and the youngest Jack (Shia LaBeouf), who run a pretty successful moonshining buisness. Of course, in comes a deputy from Chicago by the name of Charlie Rakes (Guy Pearce, who is a good looking guy but boy does he go ugly for this role) who, as he says in the movie, makes their life a living hell. There's plenty of awesome shoot outs of course. But also in the movie two relationships develop- one between Forrest and Maggie(Jessica Chastain, her character is a former dancer who you can tell has a rough past) and the other between Jack and a quiet preacher's daughter named Bertha (Mia Wasikowska).

The director of Lawless is John Hillcoat (who also directed The Road). He, along with the rest of the crew, did a great job of getting the look of the period right. You really felt like you were in the 1930's. The soundtrack (consisting of some really good country music. I highly recommend it.) fit perfectly. I also have to give major credit to John Hillcoat for makinga Shia LaBeouf performance tolerable for me.

Speaking of performances, I'd have to say that was the best part of the movie. Of course I have to start with Tom Hardy :) I'm so happy he's finally getting the recognition he deserves. What a truly talented actor. His performance as Forrest was unbelievable. Forrest is this tough character that you wouldn't want to mess with, but at the same time you can tell he truly cares about his brothers and Maggie and would do anything to protect them. I also thought he and Jessica had amazing chemistry. If Tom wasn't already engaged, I'd say he and Jessica would make a great couple. The relationship between Forrest and Maggie was very well developed, even though it starts out slow. At one point I felt like shouting at the screen "Just hookup already!". There were these little moments between their two characters that just made my hear melt :)

Guy Pearce is very convincing as the villain. His character is so sleazy and evil. You know things are going to turn ugly whenever he appears on the screen.

The great Gary Oldman is also in this. He plays a gangster named Floyd Banner. Just to warn you, the trailers are a little misleading. Gary is only in this for maybe 10 minutes total.

Another thing I should probably warn you about- this movie is extremely violent. It didn't really bother me too much, although I must admit I had to look away from the screen more than once.

For the longest time tonight, I debated giving Lawless a 9.5. Simply because Shia the douchebag is in it and I can't stand him. Especially after all the crap he pulled on the set of this movie. I don't feel like getting into the details right now, but if you're interested I'm sure you can google it. Anyway, the more I thought about what an overall great movie this was and the fact that I'm a huge Tom Hardy fan, I just couldn't bring myself to do it.

My Rating: 10/10