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Bunch Of Movie Reviews pt. 1 of 2

October 8, 2013

I remember a time, a little over a decade ago, when watching movies, writing reviews, and updating my website were arguably the most important things in my life. I watched EVERYTHING and posted my reviews immediately. I worked at a movie theater too, so I prided myself in having reviews posted before most major films were even released to the public. I remember having a huge book of HTML code and even had my own domain names: http://www.mistamac.com and http://www.maccent.net — both of which are now completely defunct (although it looks like someone else has registered the former for a photography website). Even the free Geocities site that used to host my pages for free is gone from existence. For all the time and effort I put into those sites, I have absolutely nothing to show for it. It’s a little depressing.

Things have changed quite a bit in the past decade. Movies don’t play nearly as large a role in my life as they used to. In fact, by 2005, I pretty had no clue what was going on in film… that is, until Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins woke me from my slumber and reminded me just how amazing movies can be. Since then, I’ve been more aware of what’s going on in the movie world (and completely obsessed with all things Batman!), but my dedication to posting reviews of the films I’ve watched has been sporadic, at best. Since 2008, when I started this blog, I’ve had periods of consistency, but mostly I’ve been really lazy about it. From my experience, writing talent doesn’t stay constant without practice and the more removed from it I become the more often I sit in front of my computer with no clue how to articulate my feelings. I’ve started and trashed more blog posts in the past couple years than I can count and I continually lower the quality and length of my film reviews. Still, there is one thing I’m sure of: I enjoy going through my older posts and reading my thoughts once upon a time and I really like having a catalog of all the films I’ve seen and my ratings for each one. I’ve made it a goal of mine to update my blog at least once a week though, so that should increase my consistency for the foreseeable future.

With that said, here are all the 2013 films I’ve seen that I haven’t posted about yet:

We’re The Millers – This isn’t saying much, but this is arguably 2013’s best comedy so far. Nearing her mid-40s, Jennifer Aniston is still smoking hot and this movie showcases her sexiness more than anything else in her career. Also, Will Poulter gives a breakthrough comedic performance and I was pleasantly surprised (upon further inspection) to discover that he was the same kid that wowed me in 2008’s Son Of Rambow. Like most comedies, We’re The Millers gets ridiculous at times, but all in all, provides consistent laughs. 6.5/10

Elysium – A fascinating concept and the highly anticipated follow-up to Blomkamp’s District 9, Elysium is riveting, gruesome, and heartbreaking while exploring the social divide between the upper-class and everyone else. For a film that feels a lot like an epic picture, Elysium is very concise well-paced, keeping you on the edge of your seat through it’s entirety. Heading into awards season, Elysium is in contention with Star Trek Into Darkness as the best film I’ve seen this year. 7.5/10

Spring Breakers – Wow. Spectacularly bad. And I’ve only seen the first 30 minutes. Three times. I just couldn’t stomach any more and it’s not like I didn’t try. Even so, you should have some semblance of a plot within the first half hour and there is none here. NONE. As far as I could tell, this film serves no purpose other than to capitalize on the popularity of Vanessa Hudgens and Selena Gomez and exploit them by having them breaking bad. And while there’s plenty of nudity in the first half hour, don’t expect any from Gomez or Hudgens. I didn’t even make it far enough in the film to see James Franco, a former Oscar nominee, potentially tarnish his resume, but I can only imagine. This will be tough to top as the worst film of the year. Expect Razzie nominations for everyone involved. 2/10

The Bling Ring – Reminded me a lot of Spring Breakers, but slightly more watchable. Maybe it was because Sofia Coppola (Lost In Translation) wrote and directed it, or that Emma Watson starred in it, that I was able to make it through the whole thing, but unfortunately neither of these ingredients help the film at all. In fact, Coppola took a potentially interesting story–a group of teenagers breaking into celebrity homes for personal tours and to steal valuable items–and made it as boring and stupid as possible. Emma Watson is so bad in her role that I’m legitimately concerned about her acting future. There is nothing redeemable about this awful movie. 2/10

Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox – DC has a very strong history with their animated feature films, but this is probably one of my least favorite. Focusing on The Flash, The Flashpoint Paradox finds the titular hero in a different timeline where Bruce Wayne is dead and Thomas Wayne is a gun-toting, murderous version of Batman and Aquaman and Wonder Woman are the villains. Any Justice League film that puts Bruce Wayne on ice is already off to a bad start. I can’t imagine this is the best Flash story they had to work with, but maybe I just need to give it another watch. 5/10

Don Jon – I was a bit surprised by how much of a focal point watching porn is in this film. I was expecting a light, humorous rom-com that was maybe a bit on the dirty side, but Don Jon is quite filthy and reality versus fantasy and porn addiction play the biggest thematic roles. Scarlett Johansson is as gorgeous as ever, but her character is a bit snooty and overly controlling and the film definitely argues for substance over style when it comes to relationship material. Regardless, Joseph Gordon-Levitt has to be considered a genius for writing and directing a film where he gets to make out constantly with Scarlett Johansson. Kudos JGL! Also, a surprisingly good acting performance from Tony Danza! Consistently funny and at times repulsive, Don Jon is a fun watch. 6/10

This Is The End
Now You See Me
42
The Call
Pain & Gain

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