Movies

Movie Review: ANNABELLE

ANNABELLE movie poster | ©2014 Warner Bros.

Rating: R Stars: Annabelle Wallis, Ward Horton, Tony Amendola, Alfre Woodard, Kerry O’Malley, Brian Howe, Eric Ladin Writer: Gary Dauberman Director: John R. Leonetti Distributor: Warner Bros./New Line Release Date: October 3, 2014 ANNABELLE is a prequel to last year’s THE CONJURING, explaining the history of that way creepy doll that was seen in the earlier film. We even get a scene from the earlier film, with two young nurses earnestly explaining to psychic investigator Ed Warren (who is off-screen here, though his voice is still that of THE CONJURING’s Patrick Wilson, going uncredited in ANNABELLE) that the doll one …Read On »

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Movie Review: THE PARANORMAL DIARIES: CLOPHILL

PARANORMAL DIARIES: CLOPHILL poster | ©2014 RLJ Entertainment/Image

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Craig Stovin, Criselda Cabitac, Kevin Gates, Michael Bartlett, Mark Jeavons, Rob Whitaker Writer: Kevin Gates Directors: Kevin Gates and Michael Bartlett Distributor: RLJ Entertainment/Image Entertainment Release Date: September 30, 2014 DVD and digital download At the start, let’s salute the independent, do-it-yourself filmmaking ethos of writer/producer Kevin Gates and his co-director Michael Bartlett, along with their excellent choice of locations and the naturalistic performances they get from their cast. They’ve found a creepy location with some real mythology behind it. Leads Craig Stovin and Criselda Cabitac are just right as two participants in a three-day experiment …Read On »

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Movie Review: THE TWO FACES OF JANUARY

THE TWO FACES OF JANUARY movie poster | ©2014 Magnolia Pictures

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Dunst, Oscar Isaac, David Warshofsky Writer: Hossein Amini, based on the novel by Patricia Highsmith Director: Hossein Amini Distributor: Magnolia Pictures Release Date: September 26, 2014 If Alfred Hitchcock were in a low-key mood – no crop-dusters or briefcase bombs – he might have made something like THE TWO FACES OF JANUARY, the directing debut of Hossein Amini, who adapted the screenplay from Patricia Highsmith’s novel. In fact, Amini has taken pains to make JANUARY look as though it was made in the year it takes place, 1962, when Hitchcock was still active, with …Read On »

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2014 Toronto International Film Festival Wrap Up: Part 3 – The Cold List

Adam Sandler in THE COBBLER | ©2014 Image Entertainment

When they’re good they’re very good, when they’re bad, whew, stand back. Here’s the bottom of the barrel. PART 3: THE COLD LIST AMERICAN HEIST Not all the mannered acting of Adrien Brody can save this misfire that wants to be both MEAN STREETS and THE TOWN. A miscast Hayden Christensen co-stars as Brody’s step brother ex-con trying to go straight and fall back in love with his high school sweetheart (Jordana Brewster). Enter one dimensional bad guys to divide up the brothers and the girlfriend. The bank heist climax shows director Sarik Andreasyan has a certain amount of style, …Read On »

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Movie Review: A WALK AMONG THE TOMBSTONES

A WALK AMONG THE TOMBSTONES movie poster | ©2014 Universal Pictures

Rating: R Stars: Liam Neeson, Dan Stevens, Brian “Astro” Bradley, Maurice Compte, David Harbour, Adam David Thompson, Sebastian Roche Writer: Scott Frank, based on the novel by Lawrence Block Director: Scott Frank Distributor: Universal Release Date: September 19, 2014 Although Liam Neeson still plays all sorts of roles, these days – after two TAKEN movies, plus NON-STOP – it’s hard to see him in an action thriller and not have the equation of his character = badass in mind. A WALK AMONG THE TOMBSTONES tries to play that down a little bit so that we have a modicum of fear …Read On »

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Movie Review: THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU

THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU movie poster | ©2014 Warner Bros.

Rating: R Stars: Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Jane Fonda, Adam Driver, Rose Byrne, Corey Stoll, Kathryn Hahn, Connie Britton, Timothy Olyphant, Dax Shepard, Debra Monk, Ben Schwartz Writer: Jonathan Tropper, based on his novel Director: Shawn Levy Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: September 19, 2014 There are some outstanding performances in THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU, which elevates the movie into something actually watchable, as opposed to a couple of good moments interspersed with scenes meant to be funnier or more affecting. The set-up is this: Mort Altman has died. His widow, the formidable therapist and best-selling author Hillary …Read On »

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GODZILLA Highlights this week in Blu-ray, DVD and VOD Releases

GODZILLA | © 2014 Warner Home Video

Your time is short. We know this. So in order to expedite your buying and Netflix decision making, we provide you with a list of the cool and not-so-cool titles coming out for movies, television and everything in-between. So put your feet up, grab some popcorn and check out this week’s selections. Movies: GODZILLA – For all intents, this is the GODZILLA film that we have been wanting for many years. A good plot. A lot of military might. Two huge and terrible monsters. One huge and terrible defender of the Earth. Godzilla is a bad thing. For centuries, it …Read On »

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2014 Toronto International Film Festival Wrap Up: Part 1 – The Hot List

TIFF 2014 logo

The 2014 edition of the Toronto International Film Festival will go down in history as the year of the actor. With the absence of breakout films like last years mighty duo, GRAVITY and 12 YEARS A SLAVE, critics and audiences dug deeper and ended up focusing on the actors. And I mean the actors, much more so than the usual festival stars, the directors. Several mainstream actors in search of a makeover of sorts, including Richard Gere, Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Aniston, Chris Evans and Bill Murray appeared in smaller, grittier, character driven fare. The results were decidedly mixed. As in …Read On »

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Movie Review: THE SCRIBBLER

THE SCRIBBLER movie poster | ©2014 Xlerator Media

Rating: R Stars: Katie Cassidy, Garret Dillahunt, Michelle Trachtenberg, Michael Imperioli, Gina Gershon, Sasha Grey, Kunal Nayyar, Ashlynn Yennie, Eliza Dushku, Billy Campbell Writer: Dan Schaffer Director: John Suits Distributor: Xlerator Media Release Date: September 19, 2014 THE SCRIBBLER can’t be accused of having too few ideas. In fact, the movie, written by Dan Schaffer and directed by John Suits, has plots that crisscross so much that they tend to cancel one another out, even though it looks as though the effect is meant to be cumulative. The primary and most intriguing notion here is that Suki (Katie Cassidy), already …Read On »

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CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER Highlights this week in Blu-ray, DVD and VOD Releases

CAPTAIN AMERICAN THE WINTER SOLDIER | © 2014 Disney Home Video

Your time is short. We know this. So in order to expedite your buying and Netflix decision making, we provide you with a list of the cool and not-so-cool titles coming out for movies, television and everything in-between. So put your feet up, grab some popcorn and check out this week’s selections. Movies: CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINDER SOLDIER – You gotta hand it to the folks at Disney. When they take something under their wing, they really know how to make a franchise out of it and do it well. Gives us all hope that they do the same thing …Read On »

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