Tag Archives: Bret 3.5 Stars

Dan In Real Life (Erin: 4 Stars, Bret: 3.5 Stars)

There are great movies, there are bad movies and then, somewhere in the middle, there are movies like Dan In Real Life.

With Steve Carrell in the lead role, the story of a widower raising three girls (the middle of which might actually be Satan) and falling for a stranger in a book store only to find out (SPOILER) that it’s his brother’s girlfriend makes for a cute film.

Presumably, the movie is based on what director Peter Hedges perceives to be real life with the plot centralizing on Dan whisking his girls away on their annual trip to help his parents and the rest of his family close up their summer cabin for the season.

Along the way they do quirky things like put on a talent show, engage in a battle-of-the-sexes crossword puzzle and make pancakes for one another. The audience is made to believe these are annual rituals. It’s all very quaint, but, as we wondered in the review, do any families actually do this? It seems that after more than a handful of days together, most families would wind up killing each other off one-by-one in a Hunger Games sort of way.

For the love of Christ, one of them is Dane Cook (with the douchiness turned up to 11)! You are telling us that no one would have tried to murder him with a shovel after the first meal?

Beat him to death with it, Steve! He’s practically begging for it!

The role of Dan (I’m not really sure we ever get a last name, maybe it’s “In Real Life” ?) suits Carrell well, but despite a strong start with Binoche, the chemistry seems to fade as the movie progresses. Coincidentally, Amy Ryan is also in this film in a small role. Perhaps best known as  The Office’s Holly Flax, Ryan and Carrell would go on to share incredible chemistry in the show and it makes you wonder if the movie would have been better if it were her playing Binoche’s role. A similar question could be asked of the Cook role, actually, so maybe it was just the casting of the movie that drove Bret nuts.

In the end, it is Dan’s relationships with his daughters and, to a lesser degree, his parents, that form the heart of the movie and make it enjoyable.

There are worse movies than Dan In Real Life and, if you are a Carrell fan as Bret and Erin are, it is fun film, netting four stars from Erin and 3.5 from Bret.

Advertisements
Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Children of Men (Erin: 3.5 Stars, Bret: 3.5 Stars)

As dystopian futures go, Children of Men certainly portrays one of the bleakest; a world in which all women are infertile and the dividing line between haves and have nots is actually visible.

On the other hand, at least terrorism is rampant throughout the streets of London and everything appears to be a darker shade of blue.

Oh, did that not make you more comfortable?

We were trying to come up with a complete list of occasions for which hosting a viewing of Children of Men might be inappropriate (children’s birthday party, Christmas Eve, etc.), but, frankly, unless you are trying to settle for a nice, long depression, there aren’t a ton of viable options.

That said, Children of Men is another extremely well made film. The lack of much dialogue and music and the sometimes uncomfortably long shots serve the purpose of making you feel acutely aware of how intense the situation remains throughout the course of the film.

Although we cannot say we’ll be watching it again any time soon, Children of Men features some beautiful scenes, a terrific performance from Clive Owen (among others), and and interesting plot, helping the film net 3.5 Stars from both Erin and Bret.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Bourne Supremacy (Erin: 3 Stars, Bret: 3.5 Stars)

When he asks for a security deposit, just hand it over; it’s for the best.

When last we left Jason Bourne, he had hung up his ninja skills to retreat to a peaceful life of operating a scooter rental service in a tropical paradise with a lady that kind of looks like a guy.

His story continues in The Bourne Supremacy, the second installment of the Bourne series which — SPOILER ALERT — involves some kicking.

The Bourne Supremacy, of course, narrowly beating out other potential nonsensical titles like:

  • The Bourne Absorbency (too dry)
  • The Bourne Complacency (too meh)
  • The Bourne Infancy (too pre-quelly)
  • The Bourne Meteorology (too weathery)
  • The Bourne Intimacy (too creepy)
  • The Bourne Corpulency (too fat)
  • The Bourne Endocrinology (too medical)
  • The Bourne Insolvency (too sad)
  • The Bourne Oceanography (too wet)
  • The Bourne Psuedopregnancy (too weird)
  • The Bourne Supersecrecy (too perfect)
  • The Bourne Immunodeficiency (too ill)

The crazy part? That’s a video, they are just moving too fast for the human eye to perceive it.

The movie was not as good, in our opinions, as its predecessor, but if you like watching fight scenes that move so fast you’ll have no idea who was hitting whom, this is the movie for you. Still a high-quality flick which received 3 Stars from Erin and 3.5 Stars from Bret.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Beverly Hills Cop (Erin: 3 Stars, Bret: 3.5 Stars)

How can you beat a quality action flick with a wise-cracking Eddie Murphy in his prime and the primary villain being an upper-class, white, art gallery owner? You add some Judge Reinhold and just a pinch of Bronson Pinchot, that’s how. Erin gives Beverly Hills Cop 3 Stars on her first-ever viewing, with Bret giving it just 3.5 Stars. He’d probably like a do-over on that one.

And now, an open letter to Eddie Murphy from the RockMovieProject:

Dear Eddie,

Please come back to us, we miss you. Not to go all “Chris Farley Show” on you, but remember that time you made decent movies? For adults? That didn’t involve you dressing up in a fat suit and playing 25 characters?

It’s probably hard for anyone under the age of 20 to believe, but there was a time when you were one of the biggest superstars on the planet. Stand-up, Saturday Night Live, movies; everything you touched seemed to turn to gold.   What happened?

The last movie you starred in that has a Rotten Tomatoes score above 50 was Bowfinger. In 1999. Thirteen years ago! And even that movie wasn’t that good.

Your most recent movie — A Thousand Words — scored a zero. Zero! Only four other movies have ever scored a zero. Jack and Jill scored a three and that movie is a cinematic abortion.

In fact, your IMDB page is so horrifying we’re thinking of projecting it on the side of the house for Halloween next year.

You probably aren’t into taking tips from a quasi-popular movie review blog, but in the off-chance you are, here are a few:

Damn, we just gave him an idea, didn’t we?

  • If you are pitched a movie where “a crew of miniature aliens operate a spaceship that has a human form” or “in the future, a man struggles to keep his lunar nightclub out of the hands of the mafia” or “a single father must journey into his refrigerator and team up with a bottle of ketchup to rescue his son and daughter from an rogue jar of mayonnaise” just say NO. We only made one of those up and our guess is that if you had heard it before, you probably would have starred in it already.
  • Should you feel the need to play more than one character in a movie, turn it down. The days of Coming to America with five different, equally funny Eddie Murphy characters are well behind us, unfortunately. 
  • Stop playing “Donkey.” In 10 of your last 21 roles you played the Donkey from Shrek. Knock it off. You literally are making an ass out of yourself.
  • Start making movies for adults again. You got an Oscar nomination for Dreamgirls and even that Tower Heist movie received some decent reviews. Quit pandering to our youth, Eddie, and start pandering to the rest of us that loved Beverly Hills Cop and Trading Places.

In short, we need you to go back to being “Eddie Murphy, Superstar,” not “Eddie Murphy, Male Lead in Every Goofy Child’s Movie That Even Adam Sandler Has the Good Sense to Turn Down.”

Sincerely,

The Rocks

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Back to the Future II (Erin: 2.75 Stars, Bret: 3.5 Stars)

While Marty goes back to the future, then back to the present, then back to the past, Erin continues her assault on the Back to the Future trilogy with a paltry 2.75 Star review. At least she dressed up for the occasion.

Albeit the third-best of the trilogy, Back to the Future II still has some classic moments, including, but not limited to Marty getting Doc’s letter at the end. Bret gives it 3.5 Stars.

Still, we can’t help but shake the feeling that Doc’s feelings about the dangers of time travel had somewhat abated by the time the second movie came out…

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Armageddon (Erin: 3 Stars, Bret: 3.5 Stars)

We don’t want you to close your eyes. We don’t want you to fall asleep, cause you’d miss our review and we don’t want you to miss a thing.

Following on the heels of the ultra-realistic Apollo 13, we get another realistic space adventure.

Armageddon is a pure popcorn flick, which isn’t a bad thing by any stretch. Not to steal quotes from other movies, but even the disc smells like pure testosterone, so it comes as no surprise that Erin’s 3 Star grade was a notch lower than Bret’s 3.5 Star review.

Although, will someone or something kill A.J.? Please? The movie should have been called A.J.’s Space Day Off with him jumping over stuff in slow motion at the end… ohhhhhhh yeahhhhhhh.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

*61 (Erin: 3 Stars, Bret: 3.5 Stars)

The first and only review so far with technical difficulties! Led to us doing two parts. Erin dug the story of 61* more than she thought she would, but was critical of the HBO production. Three stars from her and 3.5 from Bret.

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

21 Grams (Erin: 3.5 Stars, Bret: 3.5 Stars)

The first of our films that neither of us had ever seen, 21 Grams best described as a “harrowing experience.” One that netted 3.5 stars from both of us. That said, Erin still needed a “mouthful of Steve Carrell” to cleanse her palette.

Tagged , , , , , , ,
%d bloggers like this: