Friday, September 4, 2015

Queen of Earth

Sweet Cheesus- this was a mind numbing, annoying, slow and ridiculous movie. I am SO disappointed in Elisabeth Moss- she has become the poster child for annoying women in film. Mad Men gave her such a head start, and she keeps stomping on it with these pretentious, slow, angst ridden movies. This woman loves a good cry. I'm not saying she has to be a comedian, but for god's sake, get OVER yourself, Mistress Thespian. Being a good reviewer, I went to rotten tomatoes to read what other people saw in it. Amazingly, no one seems to agree on what this is about. Seriously- some say it was angst ridden because Moss's character can't take the memories of a previous visit to this lake house. Some say it was her deterioration and disappointment with her life. Etc.Etc. I say that this movie is overwrought, lugubrious (a nod to my high school vocab teacher), and self-indulgent. Critics LOVE that crap- and that is why I am here. To save you from it. If you go to see it, bring a book and sit in the back and read.

The Man from UNCLE

You know, this was exactly what I expected. Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer bring this sort of updated coolness to the genre. If there is a drawback, it is probably that no matter how hard they try, it is still a rather dated (and possibly unfamiliar) genre. So, there they are- stuck in the middle of old meets new. I liked it because, well, it is Cavill and Hammer. Both charming and debonair and full of mid-century modern panache. The movie drags in spots, but it is still fun. It isn't great, but it isn't bad. It was the perfect movie for a rainy day.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Mission Impossible- Rogue Nation

Let's get the most pressing questions out of the way- Tom Cruise looks younger than he did in what was my favorite movie of his (Collateral-2004). So what is the difference? I'll tell you- he looks positively baby faced- a little rounder with no wrinkles. So either he has secret Thetan stem cell cream, or he has had some incredibly good fillers. My dentist uses fillers on herself, and she looks like Madam the puppet. But he just looks smooth. I am a little sorry because he is playing a manly manly role and yet he looks weirdly baby faced. (Go find Collateral and you'll see that is a much better look for him). Ok- I'm done on that. If you've seen any of the Mission Impossible movies or tv shows from back when, you do know that, basically, the missions really are impossible. So you get to see a lot of fancy impossible stunts that make everything come out as you predicted from the time you bought your ticket. It has a minimum of car chase stuff- which is a blessing and deserves an extra $1 right there. I liked it a lot because I like stuff that isn't so real that it can bother me. It was a nice addition to put a female spy in there- also doing some very fanciful things that most women could never do. The director does a good job of making the short Tom and short Jeremy Renner look bigger. (Tom's bio says he is 5'7" so that means he is 5'6 and Renner is 5'10 but I've seen him and he is about 5'8").  I'll go see a Tom Cruise movie no matter what the reviews are but this one lives up to the reviews.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Ant Man

Heh- I know- if you aren't familiar with Ant Man- then you'd think, hey, it's an ant- why can't anyone just squash it? I have to say that I loved this movie. The whole concept of a man who is dressed in an ant logo suit being able to have super powers just has to grab you some kind of way. I had to see it for that very reason. There is a story, and it is kind of fun, and the premise is really sort of silly and impossible. (Unlike a man who turns into a green monster).  Paul Rudd is always SO likeable- you want him to win. There is the usual bam-pow stuff from the genre, and there is romance, etc. But if you want to just spend a couple of hours in the air-conditioning having a little fun, then go see Ant Man. Remember- critics aren't always right. But audiences are- and audiences have loved it.

Apology from Flickerchick

I'm sorry- some of my most loyal visitors got a shock when I stopped reviewing movies in April. Why did I do that? Sad to say, I was still going to the movies, but they were just awful. So awful that even giving them a review was a problem. I am going to review some of them anyway- and I won't just walk off in the future. I'll either close the site or actually write up what I've seen.
I'd give myself 1 star for being irresponsible. I normally review bad movies, but there were soooo many. So I'm back. Thanks for checking back in.


I like Amy Shumer, and I really, really like Bill Hader. But for the life of me, I don't know why Amy Shumer has to be gross. It isn't necessary. She can tell the story without the sort of off-putting "I'm a slut and you'd better like it" act. There are a million ways to be funny without having to degrade yourself. I saw Shumer in Vegas- she was funny, until it got sort of boring. This movie is the reverse. The beginning is as boring as watching golf- except it is watching boring sex. But then it grows to be a real story that has real feeling. Bill Hader's physician character is, of course, far nicer man than Shumer's character would seem to need. The ending feels contrived because it IS contrived. I know that Shumer is everyone's favorite female shock comedian, but I think she really is better than that. And in fact, she is much funnier when you can relate to her.  So get past the first 25 minutes, and you'll see a decent film that stops being a comedy act and starts being a fun and sort of nice movie.


There is a reason why this movie got 4 stars- it is worth it. Despite my husband saying that I'm a lot like the Lewis Black character (I'm pretty sure I'm not), it pretty much does sum up what it is like as a human being emotionally. The entire film is on two levels- one is for the children, and one is for the adults who will recognize all of it.  It is from the viewpoint of a girl who is uprooted and moved to another town, and all of the emotions that live inside of her head. It is inventive and creative. I loved it. So here are some more stars.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Danny Collins

Well, lookey here- finally Al Pacino uses his acting skills. I don't know what happened to Al Pacino. I thought he'd had a face lift a while back, so either this is incredible make up OR his face is melting. Either way, maybe he should worry a bit because he looks awful. I know he's 74, but he looks worn and tired. Or maybe it is that I once thought Al Pacino was gorgeous. I'll watch him the Godfather a million times. Oh okay, I'll stop being shallow and allow him to live as a cautionary tale. Just be prepared.  He plays Danny Collins, a sort of good former rocker a la Neil Diamond. Just as I am sure Neil Diamond is sick and tired of Sweet Caroline, Danny is tired of his signature song. But money is money. Surgeons probably get tired of performing appendectomies, too, but they do it. In his heyday, Danny had a liaison with a groupie that gave him a son- and the son is, of course, now an adult with a problem but hates Danny. It makes no sense because Danny did send money but the kid and his mom wouldn't use it. That's just plain stupid and not Danny's fault. Oh well- it turns out that Danny is going to always be an addict but a good hearted one. I am going to give him a break because the little girl in the film is so cute and is willing to give Danny a break, too. This is a pretty good movie. Predictable. But pretty good.

Wild Tales

What can I say? This is an Argentinian/Spanish production of a collection of vignettes. Think of it as short stories with great twists. It is one of the best movies I've seen in the past year, because the past year had such bad movies that I almost totally quit reviewing. You, as a likely American, will only recognize a couple of these actors (notably the guy from Nine Queens), but that is what really  helps. You don't need to care about what a celebrity is looking like these days- you don't know these people. I'd say ABSOLUTELY see this, or see it when it comes out on Netflix. It is as fun as it gets.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

American Sniper

I waited to post this- when I saw the film, I was so touched and sad that I cried at the end and my poor husband had to stand in a hallway and hold me in his arms until I could compose myself.  Knowing it is a true story, and knowing that we ask men and women to go to foreign lands and put their lives at risk because that is HOW IT IS in our world- well, maybe we really are just apes in clothing. There will never be world peace- and we may always be the last hope of the beaten and raped women, abused children, and mutilated humans who are victims of dictators and need someone, somewhere to try to stop it. But we also deserve the right to protect the troops who are sent in, and Chris Kyle was the best protector who lived. He wasn't just a man-he was a heroic man. Whether you agree or disagree with war and fully wish to keep everyone in the middle east under dictatorships subject to murder and cruelty, well, that is up to you. But if I had to go to war, I would like to have at least one Chris Kyle on my side. Bradley Cooper gained a lot of muscle for this- gone is the metrosexual from the cover of People. We see a deeply humble man who is just doing his job because SOMEONE has to be that soldier. This movie felt so real because the story is so real.  I believe in men behaving like men- protecting the women and children against the vile and savage of the world. So did Chris Kyle. We can't all be heroes, but we certainly should respect the people who are. I am giving it 4 stars because it is a solid statement, well acted and heart rending. I don't apologize for anything that I think is right. And Chris Kyle was right.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Top Five

Top Five is more liked by the audience reviewers than the critics. Chris Rock is really an enigma. He is from the school of comedians who can't decide who they  are.  They want to confront race, but they make an awful lot of money from white people to be complaining. They hang on to their integrity and try to be honest about it, but usually they just turn bitter and angry with age. Not poor, just angry.  Chris Rock was the guy everyone liked when he was a young comedian. But now, what shines through for me is a deep sense of loss from him. I don't think he knows what kind of comedian he is, or even IF he is a comedian anymore. If you get past the raunchy, improbable stuff in the movie, you see a very complex and deeply sad man. He's at an age where raunchy seems uncomfortable to the audience. It's like an American Pie reunion- now they just look creepy. Rock claims to have been beaten and bullied while attending a white high school- I don't deny it but he should confront those people so he can get over some of it. His parents removed him and let him get a GED. That is too bad that they didn't find a way for him to at least try college, because he doesn't seem to have a lot of tools to cope with life and maybe going to a non-white college would have given him that sense of camaraderie that he seems to need.  It is impossible to review this film without going into Chris Rock because he is the center of it all. The story is about a stand-up comedian who has lost his drive to perform. He goes through the mire of his life and meets up with a reporter who is struggling to stay away from the booze. (Keep in mind that Rock lost an older brother to alcoholism). He is engaged to a reality star thus keeping the fake real all around him. It was okay- but I think if Rock is going to make a movie about honest things, then he has to get honest himself. This is not a comedy to me. Not at all. The serious parts are serious indeed. But if you like Chris Rock, and you miss him in general, this might be your movie.