Monday, April 25, 2016

The Revenant


This is quite a film.  Running at 2 hours and 36 minutes – you are transported into a cold, ruthless, bitter but awe inspiring world of the 1800s.  The movie is loosely based on the life story of Hugh Glass, who was an American frontiersman, fur trapper, trader, hunter and explorer.  His story is set in South Dakota itself and Hugh Glass has become a legend with this movie.  Leonardo DiCaprio plays Glass and does an amazing job.  Through different interviews I’ve seen and watched, I knew this film was quite brutal in the making for various reasons and after seeing it – you’ll understand why.  The geography of the film was almost a different movie in itself.  It played as big as character as Leonardo did – which was the intent of the director. But the basic story line is that Leonardo’s character gets mauled by a bear leaving him almost dead.  The group that he is with needs to get back to the fort and ask for a few men to stay back with Glass until he’s better or he dies.  After some time, the men leave Glass to fend for himself.  The story is his survival without any weapons, food, or strength to find his way out of the blank wilderness.  The reason I stated this was “loosely” based on his life was because the writers didn’t stick to the facts. The actual events take place in the summertime not winter, he wasn’t married or had a son as the movie portrayed, and he didn’t kill the men who left him but actually tracked them down and forgave them. But I suppose like all stories in Hollywood – it’s always better to add some gut wrenching scenes to a story that was already pretty gut wrenching.  I did like this movie though. It was intense, gritty, and compelling. If you’re going to watch it, be prepared to give it your full attention, because it’s quite a story.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Concussion

I like football.  Actually, I LOVE football.  This movie made me want to love it a little less.  It really makes you question whether the injuries and head trauma are all worth it and how much money plays into everything.  Will Smith plays Dr. Bennet Omalu, who has made the first discovery of CTE (Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy), which is a disease of the brain caused by trauma and repeated blows.  It has also been seen in other sports, too, such as boxing, hockey, racing, rodeo, etc.  People with the disorder start having dizzy spells, erratic behavior, and memory loss, which eventually leads to dementia, impeded speech, and suicidal thoughts and actions.  The only way they can be tested is after death, since the brain has to be examined.  Dr. Omalu didn’t quite know what he was up against when he started making claims against the National Football League, but the longer things went on, the more cases there were, the harder it was for them to deny it.  He isn’t against football – he just wants to find out what is causing the issues and what can be done to help people from going through these horrible episodes.  If you’ve wondered why so many high-profile athletes have been announcing they are donating their brains to science lately, this is the reason.  It will definitely make me look at football a little differently this season. 

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Daddy’s Home

I can’t believe what passes for movies these days!  For a comedy, I didn’t think this one was very funny at all.  Will Ferrell wasn’t funny.  Mark Wahlberg wasn’t funny.  There were a couple of scenes that had funny “moments,” but overall, it was just boring!  And stupid!  Ferrell plays a step-dad that is just starting to make a connection with his kids, when Wahlberg shows up as the “real” dad and interferes with everything in their life.  From then on, it’s just a competition to see who the better dad is and who the kids will like better.  I always hear people say things like they want their time back, but I really do!  This movie owes me 95 minutes back of my life!!!

Daddy’s Home


I never expect too much from Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg when they do a film together.  I think Mark Wahlberg is a better actor when he does serious roles than comedy and with that being said . . .this movie is just fluff.  Will Ferrell plays a step-father to his new wife’s kids who don’t like him.  It takes him a long time to earn their trust and when he finally does, the biological dad, played by Mark Wahlberg, shows up.  From there – it’s just an all-out battle to see which “dad” is the best and who can win the kids’ love.  The movie is just what you expect it to be, cheesy gags and dumb one-liners.  Towards the end of the movie there was a hint of something a little deeper but it doesn’t last too long.  I wouldn’t say this is a “family” film for younger kids because there is language and strong sexual innuendos.  But if you’re looking for fluff to pass the night or you like Will Ferrell humor – this movie would be ok to pass some time if the paint on your wall has dried!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Room

This movie was incredibly powerful!  It was intense, scary, emotional, fast, slow, draining and just wore me out!  Brie Larson won the “Actress in a Leading Role” Oscar for her portrayal of a woman that was kidnapped at the age of 17, and forced to live in a shed for seven years!  It was just her and her son in that “room” with little more than basic necessities.  He was born there and didn’t know ANYTHING about the outside world – just that room.  He had never looked out a window or gone up or down stairs or petted a dog or even seen or talked to anyone except his mom and eventually their captor.  After escaping, it was like that's when the real struggle began!  With trying to get back to normal life and all the issues the whole ordeal had caused for everyone.  I was worried about the kid adjusting, but the mom had been so strong for so long, she's the one who had the most problems when it was all "over" for them.  Both of them, along with all of their family, went on a horrible journey that can never truly end for any of them.  I’m glad I watched this one, but never need to see it again.  I don’t think I’ll ever forget it, either… 

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Creed

Before watching this, I wasn’t sure that we really needed another “Rocky” movie – and I know it’s called Creed, but it’s really Rocky VII if I’m not mistaken!  I love the first three or four Rocky movies – and still watch them all the time - but felt like they’d kind of gone downhill with the last couple.  This movie was like it brought new life to the series for me!  The acting was stronger than it has been, the story was stronger than it has been, and it was all just a lot deeper and more emotional than I ever expected!  Michael B. Jordan plays Adonis Johnson, the son of the late Apollo Creed, who died in Rocky IV.  He wants to become a great fighter like his dad was and has never really had anyone in his life that could teach him.  So, it just makes sense for him to go to the man who knew Apollo better than anyone to train him – Rocky Balboa!  It was great seeing all of the flashbacks and little nods to the earlier films, along with adding a lot more to the story instead of just the same old, same old.  This was a great movie and I can’t wait to add it to my rotation!

Creed


There was a reason that Sylvester Stallone won a Golden Globe this year for his reprisal of Rocky – because he deserved it!  This movie packed a powerful, emotional punch that I wasn’t expecting.  Sly is Rocky and no one can play him better!  At this stage of the game – we see a much older, wiser Rocky than what we knew in the past.  His wife died and his child no longer visits him.  He has no desire to be in the ring until Adonis shows up on his doorstep.  What a better salute to the original Rocky movies than to have the old memories mixed in with the new.  We are taken on a very emotional journey as we watch the fire light up in Rocky’s eyes again with his love for boxing and see the beginnings of possibly, a new character, come to play.  There are a few twists that almost broke my heart and I knew the movie couldn’t end that way.  But for all true Rocky fans – it ends with a fight of redemption and the love of an old friend.  Don’t miss it –just sit back and enjoy it!