Movies

June 2018

Ah June, a hot summer month that’s perfect for movie watchin’. I cranked out 26 movies which is back to normal. With all these movies though, this turned out to be the worst rated month of all of 2018. The average rating was a weak 6.4/10 and as you’ll find out in a minute, there were no shortage of worsts. But before that, let’s talk about the few bests.

Best of the Best


To Each, Her Own – 7.8

To Each, Her Own could almost be the biggest surprise winner for the fact that this was a Netflix recommendation. If you’ve read my past monthly summaries you’ll know just how terrible of a track record Netflix has with me. This movie is about a woman in a same sex relationship who starts to have feelings for a man. It’s an interesting flip on the usual story where it’s a straight woman falling for another woman. Not only was it a neat twist, but there were some genuinely funny moments. I liked the characters and was interested to see where the story would go. I can honestly say I didn’t see the ending coming. It’s a little weird, but the journey to get there wasn’t bad.

A Quiet Place – 8

If you’ve been a part of the world this past year you’ve probably heard about A Quiet Place. A movie set in a world where if you make a single noise you’ll be murdered by monster aliens. There was so much talk about this movie and for good reason. It’s a well made, original movie that you don’t see too often these days. I liked the creativity required to pull off a movie with very little dialogue and the relationships between the characters which felt genuine and real. This one is definitely worth a watch.

Zodiac – 8

And my favorite movie of June is Zodiac which is a 3rd watch for me. Long time readers might have read my last post discussing this movie. I’ll summarize it and say that this movie has held a strong 8 rating across all viewings. The quality of the story, acting and effects are never brought into question. This is an incredibly well done movie. The only thing that loses its magic on multiple viewings is the ending. The first time you watch it, the ending is so suspenseful, but once you know the outcome you can relax a little and it doesn’t pack the same punch. Obviously, I can’t fault a movie just because I know how it ends. Ending aside, the thing that this movie does for me the most is renew my interest in the Zodiac killer. Every time I watch it I have to go look into any new revelations on the case and research a little more into the facts. This is a movie that always sticks with me when its finished and why it was my best of June.

Worst of the Worst


Annabelle – 5

I thought I heard that this was actually one of those good horror movies that exist out there and I wanted to give it a watch one Friday night. Little did I know, this was just your run of the mill jump scare ridden horror movie. Let me just say that loud noises are not scary. They may be surprising, but that is not horror. This movie had so many jump scares in it that by the end I just started laughing. I could tell whenever it was going to happen and it ruined the entire movie. I was more scared near the beginning when the doll did nothing because I was in suspense waiting to see if it would move. If you’ve never seen a scary doll horror movie maybe this would be new and exciting, but if you have then this is not worth your time.

Bicentennial Man – 5

I watched this movie directly after reading the short story and like usual that was a huge mistake. This movie in no way lives up to the short story. The story was more inside Andrew’s head and it explores what it means to be human. The movie, on the other hand, took most of that out in favor of having a romance plot. I don’t see why that was necessary and I actually found it creepy how a robot falls in love with a human. Not just a single human, but generations of humans from the same family. It’s like, “Hi, I’m Andrew. I was in love with your mother, now I’m going to be in love with you.” The story just didn’t do it for me, and I hate to say it but I’m not the biggest fan of Robin Williams because I can never get lost in the characters he plays. Another thing that bothered me was how they tried to tie in the original material by having a scene explaining the 3 laws of robotics, but it literally never comes in to play for the rest of the movie. I felt like they wasted the opportunity to tie that in more especially since it was so integral to the short story. Now, I can’t say for sure whether any of these things were in the novel because I haven’t read it, but overall I preferred how the idea of a robot trying to become human was handled in the short story more. I will say one good thing about this movie before I move on though. The old age makeups were absolutely stunning. I couldn’t find a single flaw with any of them. They are literally the best I’ve ever seen and I’m just blown away by it. If only they could’ve put that much effort into the rest of the movie.

Ghostland – 4.8

If Annabelle drove me crazy for its overuse of jump scares, Ghostland drove me crazy for its incessant screaming. Everyone in this movie would not stop screaming. It’s not scary or helpful in any way to the plot, it’s just loud and annoying. This almost maybe could’ve been an interesting movie because there was this sort of plot twist in the middle that I didn’t think of. It took the movie in a slightly different direction and gave it a bit of depth. But then the women kept screaming and screaming and screaming. Screaming is the only thing I took away from this movie. If you love mediocre makeup effects and have partial hearing loss then this could be right up your alley.

The Collector – 4.7

Down down we go. Another awful horror movie to add to my worst of the worst. I got this one as a recommendation saying that it was actually good and that it turned the torture porn genre on its head. I love me a good genre bending movie, but this wasn’t it. It was a tiny bit interesting having a main character who isn’t totally inept, but everyone else in the house was so it really cancelled it out. There was one moment where the main guy saves a woman and then she acts like an idiot, starts screaming and gets herself killed moments later. This is your below average torture porn gore fest movie where people do stupid things and are killed by a supernatural psychopath.

Mothlight – 1

I’m not going to beat a dead moth, you can read just what I thought of this “movie” in my previous TSPDT post. Giving this a 1 might be the reason why this was the lowest rated month of the year, but honestly it deserves it.


Biggest Surprise

Contagion – 8

Thankfully things are back to normal this month and I have a biggest surprise to give out. This is the same one I almost gave out last month by accident. Contagion is about a spreading disease, how it affects people and how the CDC works to stop it. This is the biggest surprise for me because I’ve seen it once before and remember not liking it. I watched it because it found its way into my random queue. This is exactly my kind of movie. I found it so interesting how a disease spreads and how they come up with vaccines. They also weren’t afraid to pull any punches. People contracted the disease who, in a regular summer blockbuster, would survive because they’re a main character, but in this movie they don’t. A lot of different plot threads were weaved together so well that it never felt like too much was going on. I particularly loved the ending which I won’t spoil. I highly recommend this movie and it might have just made its way into my rewatch rotation.


Biggest Disappointment

Tomb Raider – 6.64

And finally the movie I was waiting to talk about for the entire month. This was the movie so disappointing that I almost put it on last month’s summary. I’m a female and I absolutely stand behind movies with strong female leads so right off the bat I was interested in this. To top it off, I heard that it was actually a good video game adaptation and I thought I was in for a good movie. Clearly that isn’t what I got. While it had its moments, overall I found myself wishing it was over. It was boring and the story was super crazy predictable. Stop pulling the “my parent disappeared x years ago on an island and I just want to find out what happened to them” while pretending like the parent is actually dead. I don’t even feel bad about ruining anything because it was so damn obvious. I would’ve been more surprised if he was actually dead. I didn’t even like this as a mindless popcorn movie. There was nothing new or exciting about it at all. The only thing that gave this movie any legs was that they called the character Lara Croft. If you replaced her with generic action movie man, this wouldn’t have gotten much buzz. I appreciate trying to introduce stronger female leads, but please put them in better movies. Let’s take Wonder Woman and build on that, not go 1 step forward and take 2 steps back.


This month had a lot of worsts in it and very few bests so the quality wasn’t there, but the quantity sure was. I think I’m back in my movie watching groove which feels good so I don’t even mind how much garbage I had to sit through. I knocked out quite a few TSPDT movies which I have queued up to review and will be posting in a few days so stayed tuned. I want to finish with a shout out to my favorite non-movie thing I watched in June which is The Staircase on Netflix. I watched the first 8 episodes in 2 days with no regrets. I absolutely love crime docuseries and this one was even better because it had a lot of courtroom footage. If you liked Making a Murderer or Paradise Lost, absolutely check this out. Stay tuned for my next post, hopefully in a few days.

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Movies

Mothlight (1963)

Mothlight is #983 on TSPDT and is so far the shortest movie on the list. It clocks in at a whopping 3 minutes and 25 seconds long. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and I usually do include a picture for each movie, but in this case since it’s such a short movie I’m going to include 3 minutes and 25 seconds worth of pictures which amounts to a whole lot of words.

So there you go, that’s the movie. At first I thought it was some troll click bait then I realized that it actually was the movie. I’m bewildered that this can make it onto the list and am starting to question the legitimacy of it all. This is obviously extremely experimental. Apparently the director glued dead insect parts directly onto the filmstrip and ran that through the projector. So technically nothing was actually shot for the movie, it was just put together by hand. Interesting idea? Maybe. Interesting movie? No! I struggle to even call this a movie and I don’t want to spend any more of my brain power analyzing this.

Would I recommend this? Absolutely not. Is it kind of too late for that since I linked the video already? Yes. Am I done asking and answering my own questions? Yeah…

Verdict: N/A Not a movie!

Movies

The Indian Tomb (1959)

As promised here is my review of #984, The Indian Tomb. This is a German movie set in India about this man who’s pretty angry that the woman he loves is in love with another man. He hires an architect to build a tomb in which he can throw her in until she presumably withers away and dies. I originally fell asleep to this movie several times, but I did manage to eventually fumble my way through it to the end.

I said in my last TSPDT post that this movie was cringe worthy so let me get right into the good stuff. You might have noticed that I said this was a German movie set in India. Does that mean it was made by Germans and featured actual Indian actors? No. This movie has so much, for lack of anything else to call it, brown face in it that I could barely watch. The “man” I referenced in my detailed summary that’s building the tomb is supposed to be a Maharajah which is an Indian king or ruler. He was played by an Austrian born man who wore brown makeup to give him that authentic Indian look. The “woman” is also supposed to be Indian and is played by an American. She wears slightly less brown makeup but Indian she is not.  Their wardrobe was absolutely gorgeous though. Take a look  for yourself and tell me that isn’t some great costume work.

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Before I move on from these character, I have to point out that the woman reads her lines in English. However, all her lines are dubbed over in German which seems to be a common practice in European movies. So if you’re following along, that makes her an American playing a German playing an Indian. I shouldn’t let that bother me so much, but wow it really did. I couldn’t get into this movie when every time I look at one of the characters I know how fake it is.

While I’m on the subject of fake. Let’s dive into that… special scene where the woman, Seetha, is forced to dance in front of a snake. Here’s a slideshow of the “snake” in all its glory. It really is something special.

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Don’t get mad at me for critiquing an effect from the late 50s. I’m not expecting a majestic fully functional snake replica. What I was expecting was them to at least edit out the wires!

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That whole scene is just too hilarious for me to take seriously. She dances in front of this snake for minutes in what can barely be described as clothes. It amounts to a set of boob covers, a female genitalia cover and a butt cover. I’m thinking maybe the snake held off attacking because he was trying to figure out what she was doing. In all honesty, I spent the whole scene wondering how they kept those things stuck to her skin. Then just when you think she’s tamed the paper mache beast, her ankle bracelet comes unclasped and she kicks it off, which, as everyone knows, is the one thing that angers snakes the most. But since this is only the middle of the movie, she’s saved from a mouth full of deadly paper cuts.

With all these TSPDT movies I watch I try to figure out why they make it onto the list. This movie has a 100% on rotten tomatoes and a 6.8/10 rating on IMDB. It’s based on a novel and was the second of two movies that were both filmed by Fritz Lang. He is a renowned directer who, at this point in his life, had been directing films for 40 years. It’s an ambition epic tale with some beautiful locations, and as mentioned earlier amazing costumes. Now I haven’t seen the first movie in the set, but this one actually holds its own as a stand alone. The plot makes enough sense that you don’t need to have seen the first to follow along. It has a good story and the pacing isn’t too bad. I think for those reasons it earned its place on the list. If you can tolerate the bad effects, dubbing and cringe worthy makeup then this might be something you can enjoy. Otherwise, maybe just watch it with some friends to have a few good laughs. Finally, if there’s any movie that needs to be remade in Hollywood today, it’s this. If they could get real Indian actors, clean up the effects and keep the story and locations I would definitely go to see it.

Verdict: 7/10

Movies

May 2018

May was the month I managed to get back into my movie groove a little. I was only able to get through 18 movies which is my lowest number per month this year, but I feel somewhat re-invigorated to continue my movie watching journey. I got through that TSPDT hurdle and re-watched some of my favorites (because they are my favorites I’m incredibly biased and the ratings are going to be quite high… something has to get a 10 around here!). How do they all stack up? Well here we go.

Best of the Best


Please Stand By – 7.75

This one is about a young woman with Autism who writes a Star Trek script for a contest and tries to get it to L.A. in time. A somewhat re-used road trip plot with the usual familiar scenes. What took me by surprise the most was Dakota Fanning. She continues to amaze me to this day. From I Am Sam to War of the Worlds to this, she never fails to give a great performance. I can’t attest to how true to life her portrayal is of someone with Autism, but I had a good time watching her and was rooting for her the whole way. Also that dog was too cute so clearly this belongs on my best list.

Revenge – 7.8

This is an interesting pick because it’s sort of like an exploitation type tale of revenge. But this ain’t your grandma’s revenge tale, this one turns the genre on its head and puts the female in the role of power. I don’t want to ruin much, but there’s a scene where a man is running around naked being chased by a woman… very much going against the norm. It was refreshing to watch and mighty entertaining. This is one of those movies you’ll have to suspend some disbelief for, but if you can it’s worth the watch. Small warning that this is not for the weak of stomach. There’s a lot of blood and gore… you have been warned.

Every Day – 7.8

I already went over this one in more detail in an earlier post so I won’t rehash it here. This was one of the more emotional movies I watched in May and for that reason it made it on to this list.

Carol – 10

Ok here comes the really unfair movies that are going to just get a straight up perfect score because they’re in my top 20 movies. This is my 5th time seeing Carol and it never gets old. The way they can say so much with their eyes draws me in every time. I like the character development of Therese who goes from a soft spoken woman unsure of what she wants, to someone who is self assured and is willing able and to fulfill her desires. In particular, I love the scene where she finally learns to say no. It was a problem she had throughout the movie and she was finally able to overcome it, but then she realizes it wasn’t the ability to say no that she was after, it was the ability to know what she wants and to try for it. It’s just an amazing, incredibly acted movie that I’m sure I’ll re-watch until I die.

Jurassic Park – 10

I wasn’t sure if I should put this in my Best of the Best or Biggest Disappointment category this time around. Thankfully, another movie drew my wrath for the disappointment award and saved Jurassic Park from that awful fate. This has long since been my favorite movie of all time. I have the book, t-shirts, posters and I even made a blanket of the iconic poster. I watched it so many times as a kid that I wore out the VHS and had to buy a new one. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen it, but I’ll call this my 25th re-watch. This one was slightly disappointing to me, however, because I finally lost my special effects blinders and was able to see the imperfections in the computer generated scenes. I used to always say how this movie held up so well over the years and that it looked better than the current stuff. I now sit on the side that the computer graphics have improved over the years. While that is a sad thing for me to admit, the animatronics, puppetry and people wearing dinosaur suits are still mind-blowingly good. The locations are beautiful and a welcome change from fake green screen backgrounds on sound stages. There is character development, foreshadowing, and good plot pacing. For now, this will still earn a perfect score from me and can stay as my #1 movie, even though it won’t win this month.

La La Land – 10

That’s right, La La Land won the entire month. This is the 4th time I’ve seen this movie and was quite possibly the best time. I had heard some theories on the ending and the story in general that really made sense for me and elevated the movie to a new level. I got to watch it through a fresher pair of eyes. Spoilers ahead for the ending so yeah, can skip ahead if you want. The first time I saw the movie I was disappointed with the ending because I wanted them to end up together. Then after some reading and thinking, I learned that they were never meant to end up together. The songs in the beginning spell it out completely for you. “Someone in the crowd will take you where you wanna go.” They are each other’s “someone” and the purpose of their meeting was to take each other to the next phase of their life. Think how Mia nudged Sebastian into getting any kind of job which gave him the means to start his club, and how Sebastian nudged Mia into starting her own show which led to her breakthrough role as an actress. Not only that, but A Lovely Night literally talks about how they won’t end up together. It’s done really tongue in cheek so you can argue it’s just a joke of a song, but I do believe it has more of a meaning to it than that. Let’s not forget that the music is wonderful and catchy, the costumes are breathtaking, and the characters are captivating. That is why this movie wins all of May.

Worst of the Worst


Shortwave – 6

This is a movie you’ve probably never heard of, and for good reason. It’s a small sci-fi movie that I randomly found. The plot didn’t make much sense. It was trying to be smart, but just ended up feeling hollow. The big surprise movie scheme was nonsense and had too many things that could go wrong for anyone to think it was a good idea. The effects were actually pretty good though so I’ll give it some points for that. Overall, this was just a throw away movie that I wouldn’t recommend watching unless you want some background noise.

1922 – 6

As usual on the worst of the worst list, this was a Netflix recommendation for me. 1922 is a Stephen King adaptation about a farmer who kills his wife and then things happen… scary things… or not really. I found this extremely boring and wanted it to end. I will say that it did feel like a Stephen King adaptation though. I keep watching them even though there are very few that I actually like. I suppose if you’ve liked his other adaptations this one will probably please you and is worth your time. If you’re like me and his movies don’t really gel with you then skip this one, you won’t be missing much.


Biggest Surprise

I screwed up a little here and the movie that I thought was my biggest surprise of the month I ended up watching in June so it doesn’t count. I’m going to cause some controversy with this decision, but for May I have no biggest surprise award to give out. Everything I watched was exactly what I expected. A little anti-climatic, sorry. At least you’ll get to read about my biggest disappointment that beat out Jurassic Park below… right?


Biggest Disappointment

Well no. See, I also watched that one in June so it too does not count. In lieu of this information, I could give this award to Jurassic Park, but after 25 years of faithful entertainment I will let this viewing slide. Since no other movies disappointed me in May, this award will go un-awarded as well.


This might go down as my least complained about month thus far in this blog. A lot of it boils down to the fact that to re-invigorate my movie watching I re-watched some of my favorites which I just know I’ll like. Sorry you had to read such positive, praiseful words, but let me guarantee that next month you’ll get to read me rip apart some movies. I know this for a fact since this post is so late that I already have a few movies in mind. There will absolutely be biggest surprise and biggest disappointment awards to give out! Be sure to stay tuned for my next TSPDT post soon where I discuss The Indian Tomb… yeah it’s going to be fun.

Movies

Triple TSPDT Feature

As promised, here is the male led triple feature of TSPDT movies. Like I mentioned in the previous post, the women led triple averaged a score of 7/10. Let’s see if the men can beat that!

Bad Timing (1980)

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Starting off with #987 Bad Timing, a movie about a psychiatrist who dates this insane woman who ends up overdosing. Hey, don’t be mad at me for spoiling the ending… it starts with the end and does some Pulp Fiction jumps through time. It sounded interesting, but let me down in its execution. The time jumps were the biggest issue I had. It starts off with the overdose, then jumps back to the beginning with how they met, and back and forth, back and forth. Sometimes this style can work, but for me I felt like it would have worked better just going in chronological order. This movie had either a legitimate case of an unreliable narrator or just used cheap tricks to withhold a crucial detail from the ending at the beginning until the ending at the end. In this case, I definitely felt tricked by the surprise at the end because it didn’t really build up enough for me to believe it. I also didn’t buy into the cop being so interested in a regular old run of the mill overdose. It was used as a way to drive Alex to reveal the truth, but like I said that truth didn’t feel earned. I enjoyed some parts of it, but overall this wasn’t more than the average movie for me. That scene at the party though, what an entrance!

Verdict: 7/10


The Fountainhead (1949)

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Moving on to #986, The Fountainhead, which is a late 40s movie based on a novel by Ayn Rand about an architect who really loves being an architect and wants to build the best buildings he can. Yeah, this movie is really into architecture and makes it seem like architects rule the world. It was kind of goofy that way, but passion is interesting so it kept my attention.  The story itself is very good, but at one point it got under my skin. There’s a point where the bad guys start saying how the perfect human should submit to society. They’re meant to do what society needs of them and shouldn’t take anything in return. This is in response to the main character wanting to do something new and modern to go against the grain. It really hit home with me because I hate thinking of myself as just another number in society; completely faceless and replaceable. I guess that’s why I was rooting for Howard to win in the end so that I can feel like all hope might not be lost after all. It’s very entertaining and held up decently well for a nearly 70 year old movie. Also, I don’t know if you’ve heard the news but there are talks of remaking this so you definitely have to see it before the remake comes out. Personally, I may even consider reading the book since I enjoyed the movie so much. Give this one a shot, it’s not too bad.

Verdict: 8/10


Red Beard (1965)

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Lastly, we have #985, Red Beard, which I alluded to in my last monthly summary as one of my movie blockers on this list. The way I talked about it, you may already be thinking that I didn’t like it too much. With this movie being just over 3 hours long, that’d be a correct assumption for the first half of the movie and incorrect for the second. The first half to me was, I’m sorry to say, some uninteresting slice of life around a red bearded doctor in Japan. Mercifully, once they came across Otoyo things really picked up. Like I’ve said before, I’m no film student, but there were things even I noticed in this movie. The first being in the scene right after the intermission, Otoyo wakes up and you see her whole face is cast in shadow except for her eyes. It was like at that point her whole life was shrouded in darkness, but by the end that darkness was gone and she could finally live in the light. Another scene that stuck with me and really warmed me up to Red Beard (the character) is when he’s trying to give Otoyo her medicine. Every time he brings the spoon to her lips she knocks it back in his face. He doesn’t get angry though, he just fills up another spoonful and tries again. Each time she wacks it away you can see how confused she is at why he isn’t getting angry and each wack is smaller and smaller until she finally lets him give her the medicine. It was a really sweet scene and was incredibly acted. Now we can fast forward to when she’s gotten better and she befriends the boy, Chobo. It really shows how far she’s come that she can connect with and trust another person again. It was made all the more heartbreaking with what befalls Chobo and his family. The scene before it happens and the aftermath are insane. I actually teared up because everyone gave such great performances. Overall, if they had gotten to the post intermission part of the story sooner I think I would’ve been more interested all the way through. That aside, it was an enjoyable enough movie so I’m not completely disappointed and I’m glad I was able to finish it.

Verdict: 7.3/10


These turned out to be a decent trio of movies and if you’ve been keeping track that puts the men’s average at 7.4/10 meaning they edged out the competition and won my random triple feature showdown. I suppose it’s a good thing that TSPDT movies won this since they are supposed to be the top #1000 movies. With that said, a 7.4 is not a good average for movies of this caliber. It’s a little disappointing and I wonder how some of these movies end up on the list. Case in point, my next TSPDT post will be one that is pretty cringe worthy. Before that, stay tuned for my May summary in the next few days.

Movies

Triple Feature

I’m going off script for this post and doing a triple feature of non-TSPDT movies. What we have here is a mix of movies I wanted to see and ones I randomly found. These are all fairly recent movies and while I don’t feel much like spoiling them, I might hint at things that you could extrapolate on and be able to figure out the endings so read on at your own risk.

Thoroughbreds (2017)

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To start things off is the movie I had on my watch list for months, Thoroughbreds. I honestly can’t remember where I found out about this movie or why I wanted to see it for so long. It’s about two teenage girls who make plans… plans for murder! With such a fascinating and original premise, how did this movie turn out? Not great. The most original element of the movie I would say is that one of the girls admits she is basically a sociopath with no emotions and has learned how to fake them to fit in. While this sounds interesting, it was also the downfall of the movie. She says she fakes emotions, but clearly not for the audience because her character was just so flat. I was bored through most of the movie because I couldn’t connect with the characters and what they were doing. There were some some stand out scenes like learning how to fake cry, the step-dad putting one of the girls, Lily, in her place, and the climax in the living room. The other point worth mentioning is how this was Anton Yelchin’s last movie which he was able to finish filming for before he died. It’s sad watching him knowing that he’s gone, but it was at least nice that the movie was dedicated to him in the credits. Seeing his last performance is probably the only reason I’d give to watch this movie. Overall it just wasn’t really worth it.

Verdict: 6.4/10


Every Day (2018)

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With that disappointment under my belt, I moved on to the next movie, Every Day. I saw the trailer for this when I went to see Ready Player One in theaters and I’m ashamed to admit it was actually kind of intriguing. It’s one of those teenage dramas based on a novel about a teenage girl who falls for a… thing… named A who wakes up in a different body every morning. It might sound stupid, but honestly I thought it was really well done and emotional. I was hooked right from the start because I found the characters extremely likable and the pacing of the romance felt genuine. There were scenes that made me laugh and ones that destroyed me and had me weeping like a baby. I’ll go ahead and admit that you really need to be able to suspend your disbelief for this movie to work, but I was successful and was able to enjoy it for what it was. It was a cute movie with an extremely likable lead in Angourie Rice and a bittersweet ending.

Verdict: 7.8/10


I Kill Giants (2017)

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I wiped away my tears, threw my used kleenex in the trash and moved on to the last movie, I Kill Giants. This movie I knew absolutely nothing about, aside from the one sentence summary which goes something like, “A girl can’t deal with reality and escapes to a fantasy world with giants in it… that she presumably kills.” The first half is extremely similar to The Bridge to Terabithia because you have some kid living in a fantasy world who befriends the new kid at school. There is the evil school bully and friendly non-family adult person in both stories as well. This one however was slightly more boring and hard to follow. Thankfully, half way through the movie things changed for the better. I would say the moment Barbara is talking with the councilor and she asks her about baseball is when things start to get interesting. What does baseball mean to her? Why does it freak her out so much? These are the questions I was craving the answers to and it pulled me through to the end. Sadly, and I seriously mean that, I had to pull out my kleenex for the answers I got. The last act is pretty sad and Madison Wolfe who plays Barbara did a fantastic job. She was really the stand out in this movie and I think more than anything it was a showcase for a hopeful new talent. It’s not the most original story and at times it’s a little too slow for my taste, but the acting was good and it drew out some good emotions at the end.

Verdict: 6.9/10


Well that ends my triple feature of random new movies. One common thread I noticed is that they all feature female leads which I can definitely get behind. I love men, but it’s just so much easier relating to female characters for me. Perhaps that didn’t turn into great verdicts for these movies, but I think overall I was entertained and wouldn’t call it a waste of a day. For my next planned post I’m going to clear out the review backlog I have and do another triple feature of TSPDT. Not only will it be TSPDT, but coincidentally they all center on male leads. These movies averaged a 7/10 verdict… come on back and find out how the men do!

Movies

April 2018

Man oh man, April was a tough month for me. I hit a huge movie slump at the beginning of the month, but was able to come back from it when I started a free trial with Mubi, a movie streaming service that plays one new movie every day, but I’ll talk about that somewhere below. I’ve also been unable to get through a single new TSPDT movie this month because I’ve been stuck on the next one which is proving difficult to get through. Overall I managed to watch 25 movies, coming up short of my goal of 30 and most of them I didn’t like.

Best of the Best


Scott Pilgrim vs. The World – 7.5

This one was a second watch, but I didn’t remember a thing because I watched it 8 years ago. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this movie. It was fast paced, clever, had a good story and was really unique. You don’t see a lot of movies shot this in this comic book style and I thought it did it well.

The Greatest Showman – 7.8

Okay so maybe I’m a sucker for musicals sometimes. And maybe this one had fantastic music in it. I don’t know what it was, but every song was better than the last. Not only was the music great, but the choreography was incredible. The scene that stood out to me the most was the acrobatic dance routine which was so entertaining to watch. While all this was good, the story was just awful. It was really the most generic, boring plot you could come up with and if you took out all the songs you’d be left with 20 minutes of cliches.

Night Moves (2013) – 7.83

This movie wasn’t too bad, but I’ll say that I probably over-rated it on account of my fascination with “creative” ways of solving “problems”. There was a dam these people weren’t too pleased with and I was interested in knowing what they were going to do about it. I thought that after they completed their objective, the paranoia around whether they’d be caught or not was very well done. Every time someone would talk to them, or they’d hear a car driving down the road, even as a viewer you weren’t sure what was going to happen. It fell down pretty hard at the end though and I didn’t like the direction it took, but overall I was very entertained and it’s a decent movie.

Molly’s Game – 8

Initially I didn’t feel like watching this movie, then I read that it was written by Aaron Sorkin and I knew I had to. From his movies to his television shows, this guy has a really great track record with me and I wasn’t disappointed in any way with this movie. It was well written, well acted and had an interesting story. Jessica Chastain was amazing in this movie, I’m looking forward to seeing her in more. I definitely recommend this one.

The Nice Guys – 8.3

It’s interesting that this was my highest rated movie of the month since this is the second time I’ve watched it and the first watch resulted in a 7/10 rating. This showed up in my own random playlist so I gave it another shot and was pleasantly surprised. This is actually pretty funny and has an interesting story. Ryan Gosling and Russel Crow had great chemistry together, and it was refreshing to see a good father daughter relationship on screen again. This is a seriously good, entertaining movie and I secretly hope they make a sequel.

Worst of the Worst


Shanty Tramp – 6

Here is one of the movies from Mubi and it’s about this psychotic woman who goes to bars to dance and then sleeps with men to the horror and disapproval of her father. It’s a cheesy, B-movie sort of exploitation flick with violence, nudity and racism. That pretty much says it all. It’s not that great and I wish I didn’t waste my time watching it.

Hairspray – 6

Like I said earlier, I’m a sucker for musicals and I saw this one on Netflix knowing I hadn’t yet been able to see it. After watching The Greatest Showman, I just had to give this one a shot too. I immediately couldn’t get into the movie and wasn’t particularly moved by the music. The first song didn’t do anything for me, and as time went on I got the feeling I wasn’t going to like any of them. Sadly, I ended up being right. The music was from the 60s which isn’t a decade in music that has ever appealed to me. I won’t say not to see the movie because I know I’m biased based on my music preferences and you very well might enjoy it. If you can stand 60s music, then give it a shot and watch Travolta dressed as a woman.

The Commuter – 5.8

I wanted some dumb action movie to turn on and boy did I get it with this. The plot was absolutely ridiculous and unrealistic. “Find the guy I’m looking for before your train reaches the stop or things will happen”. I commute to work every day on the train and let me tell you, almost no one ever talks to each other and good luck commuting in rush hour and being able to walk around freely. It’s absolutely packed with people! Aside from my gripes about commuting, the plot itself is just stupid. There’s a scene where, as a warning, the bad guys time this event to happen as the train drives by and tells the good guy to look out the window to see it. Like please… with that kind of co-ordination, why don’t you just find the guy yourself? In another scene the good guy is under the train, then outside it, then gets back inside all while it’s moving. Just crazy. My ability to suspend disbelief was not strong enough.

Il est des nôtres – 5.7

My worst movie of the month is courtesy of Mubi and it’s about this guy that decides he doesn’t want to go outside anymore so he lives in a trailer inside of this big garage and invites his friends over all the time. I have absolutely no idea what this movie was supposed to be.  There’s a scene where they all strip one by one, including a woman in her 60s or 70s. Then they try to pull their underwear bands over their shoulders, crushing and exposing everything down there. Then his friends eat him I think. But maybe that was a dream? I have no idea! I just… I don’t even… why did I watch this… help me…


Biggest Surprise

Curse of Chucky – 6.9

This is probably an unexpected winner, but the moment I watched this movie I knew it would win for the month. This is the second time I watched it and I feel pretty bad that I didn’t give it a chance the first time. I originally rated it 4/10 and never gave it a second thought. This time around, I love that it was Chucky’s real daughter as Nica. What must it be like to have Chucky for a dad? Does he ever do the Chucky laugh just to scare the shit out of her?! Some lines were good and some of the puppet work was mega creepy. It was pretty funny that the mom was sleeping with the nanny instead of the dad… didn’t see that coming. The last thing I loved was that they had a character in a wheelchair. That’s not something you see often, especially in horror movies. In fact, the only other one I can think of is one of the Friday the 13th movies and well… he doesn’t survive too long… This is a nostalgic, campy, horror movie and I think if you’re fans of Bride of Chucky you’d like this.


Biggest Disappointment

Mubi Streaming Service

You might’ve had a sinking feeling as you read my worst of the worst that this was going to show up down here and you were right. This was truly the most disappointing thing of all of April. I originally heard about this from a channel I follow on YouTube. It really intrigued me to be able to see a new random movie every day because it takes out some of the work of hunting down the next movie to watch. I gave it a real good try, having watched 13 movies before giving up. I only liked 4 out of 13, my average rating was 6.6 and my highest rating was only a 7.5. All this added up to it not seeming to be worth it. I stopped looking forward to the new one every day and was more stressed that I had to keep up and watch ones that I didn’t even find interesting just to make it worth my money. It’s a really great idea and with different movies I’d be open to trying it out again, unfortunately it just wasn’t worth it to me in the end.


April turned out to be a pretty awful movie month and has taken a toll on my ability to blog. I have 2 TSPDT movies that I watched in March that I need to write up, I have Heimat still in the works, and I’m in the middle of a 3 hour Japanese movie. After binging on movies I didn’t enjoy, I need to take a step back and just try and enjoy watching movies again. I have a few new ones that aren’t on any lists queued up which hopefully turn out to be good.  So for May, expect the last 2 reviews I’ve been working on and one on the Japanese movie (if I can finish it). Watching movies is like a roller coaster ride… hopefully I’m on the way back up.