Week of February 19, 2016

For an avid movie goer, this is the frustrating time between the Oscar nominations and the awards. Usually the the worst movies roll out such as horror films. You’d think Halloween would be when we’d see them but nope, it’s usually now – starting with:
4⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ PRIDE AND PREDJUDICE AND ZOMBIES: I’m a huge Jane Austin fan and not a Zombie fan at all but this film somehow manages to put together Jane Austin’s wonderful prose with shambling corpses and make a movie that’s silly fun, very funny, gory and yet still strangely romantic. Go figure! Starring Lily James (from Downton Abbey acclaim) and Sam Riley. Directed by Burr Steers (PG13)
3⭐️⭐️⭐️ THE BOY: An American nanny is shocked that her New England family’s boy is actually a life-sized doll. After violating a list of strict rules, distburbing events make her believe that the doll is really alive. Good twist at the end. Starring Lauren Cohan, Rupert Evans, Jim Norton, and Diana Hardcastle. Directed by William Brent Bell (PG 13)
2⭐️⭐️ THE FOREST: Despite major warnings, a young American enters Japan’s Aokigahara Forest in search of her missing sister and encounters malevolent souls of the dead. Entertaining in some parts and not too scary. Starring the fabulous Natalie Dormer and Taylor Kinney. Directed by Jason Zada (PG 13)
5⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ LADY IN THE VAN: LOVED, LOVED, LOVED THIS FILM! Actress Maggie Smith is pure genius as a bag lady, a role she played to great acclaim onstage in London and reunites with the director, Nicolas Hytner, on a script the playwright Alan Bennett wrote from his memoir. Alex Jennings plays Bennett, who takes the bag lady in – making them an Odd Couple who need each other. Directed by Nicholas Hytner (PG13)
5⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ CAROL: The extremely beautiful love story conveys a couple’s heartbreak and passions, easily making it one of the year’s best films. Starring Cate Blanchett (Best Actress Oscar nomination), Rooney Mara (Best Actress in a Suporting Role Oscar nomination). Directed by Todd Haynes (R)
4⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ DEADPOOL: DEADPOOL is not just another comic book movie – it’s something different. Ryan Reynolds plays a great kind of crazy, but with a heart – somewhere. When he gets a cancer diagnosis he’s willing to go to great lengths for his love Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) and becomes a superhero with a witty sense of humor. It’s a dark, funny superhero movie not intended for younger superhero fans. Reynolds looks like he’s having a blast in the title role. The movie is quite simply ridiculous fun! Directed by Tim Miller (R)
4⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 45 YEARS: A long marriage goes adrift by a devasting timebomb from an earlier relationship in this haunting drama. Starring the fabulous Charlotte Rampling and Tom Coutney. Directed by Andrew Haigh (R)
4⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ HAIL CEASAR!: This star-packed farce is a loving tribute to the era of classical Hollywood that I really enjoyed because I’m a huge film buff but it may be boring to others. Lots of inside jokes and not your typical Coen Brothers movie. Starring George Clooney, Josh Brolin (he’s great), Scarlett Johansson, Channing Tatum (lot’s of good work for him lately), Alden Ehrenreich, Tilda Swinton (love her – she plays two characters), and Ralph Fiennes. Directed by Joel and Ethan Coen (PG13)
3⭐️⭐️⭐️ ZOOLANDER 2: Arriving 15 years after Ben Stiller first flashed the “Blue Steel” pout, ZOOLANDER reunites the core cast and sends us from Rome and international intrigue to father-son bonding. Owen Wilson and my favorite, Will Farrell (love him in just about anything) are back. The movie’s all pretty predictable but loads of fun! Directed by Ben Stiller (PG13)
3⭐️⭐️⭐️ 13 HOURS: THE SECRET SOLDIERS OF BENGHAZI: Director Michael Bay does a pretty good job putting together this wartime movie. It would be a hard one to film with so much action. It will make you very mad at our government. They had so many opportunities to go in and help our people. Starring John Krasinski (really solid work for him in a dramatic role), Pablo Schreiber and James Badge Dale (R)
2⭐️⭐️ THE 5th WAVE: The post-apocalyptic survival thriller, based on a popular young-adult novel, has lots of potential but just ends up being plain silly. It has a great cast – not sure what they were thinking. Starring Chloë Grace Moretz, Nick Robinson and Lisa Schreiber. Directed by J. Blakeson (PG13)
2⭐️⭐️ THE FINEST HOURS: With a great cast, Chris Pine, Hollida Grainer, Eric Bana and Gretchen Mol (she’s perfect for this role, though) can’t make this stormy Coast Guard rescue movie any good. Directed by Craig Gillepie (PG13)
2⭐️⭐️ IN THE HEART OF THE SEA: This saga of the epic whaling voyage that inspired “Moby-Dick” has such potential to be a great movie. It just doesn’t seem to capture the graphic or visual terror of being on that whaling boat! Strong performances by Chris Hemsworth (not too bad on the eyes) also starring Ben Winshaw and Benjamin Walker. Directed by Ron Howard (PG13)
5⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Go see the Oscar Nominated Shorts, Animated and Live Action films

  

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