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Dave’s Review: Her

Letter Grade:
(?)

A+
The Good:

Beautifully shot
A lot of time was spent on creating a believable world
Realistic portrayal of love and relationships
Amazing acting by Phoenix and Johansson
Surprisingly funny


The Bad:

Some may find it too...shall we say...quirky
Some will find it slow
Just vulgar enough to not be for everyone

Cast & Crew:

Directed By: Spike Jonze
Written By: Spike Jonze
Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Scarlett Johansson, Amy Adams, Rooney Mara, Chris Pratt

Rated R for language, sexual content and brief graphic nudity

I watch a lot of movies over the course of a film year (Oscar Season-Oscar Season) and I’m going to go ahead and say it, “Her” is the best film I’ve seen all year…hands down.

Set in Los Angeles in the not-so-distant future, “Her” begins by showing a seemingly average day in the life of Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix). In the midst of a painful (as they often are) divorce, Theodore spends his working hours being paid to write love letters to other people and his non-working hours in a HERdepression fueled haze. He absent-mindedly sorts through emails, plays video games, and frequents online chat rooms all while clearly yearning for real, meaningful human interaction. This all changes when Theodore sees an advertisement for a new computer operating system that touts an artificial intelligence that learns and evolves on it’s own. His new operating system names herself Samantha (Scarlett Johansson). As Theodore and Samantha get to know each other they fall in love and begin an unlikely, yet beautiful, romantic relationship.

With a summary like that it’s easy to understand why some people think this movie may be just a little too off-the-wall for them. This isn’t however, the story of a weird loner/nerd that creepily falls in love with his computer. It’s far more complex than that. It’s a love story, between two equally fleshed out characters that are both growing and evolving in their own ways.

This is not at all your typical feel-good romantic movie…and that’s great news. It’s complex and not just a fluff movie about how wonderful love is. It’s strange to say about a movie where half of the main characters are not “real” people, but this is the most “real” romantic film I’ve seen in a long time. It’s not nice and neat and tidy. We see the euphoric highs and depressing lows in love just as we have all experienced them in our own lives.

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Dave’s Review: Man of Steel

Letter Grade:
(?)

A-
The Good:

Great re-imagining of the well-known origin story
Solid Acting from all involved
Amazing visual effects/cinematography
Finally get to see the Man of Steel in a real, all out fight


The Bad:

The details that drove the plot were a bit convoluted
Fight scenes drag after awhile

Cast & Crew:

Director: Zack Snyder
Writer: David S. Goyer
Starring: Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Michael Shannon, Russell Crowe, Diane Lane, Kevin Costner, Laurence Fishburne, Richard Schiff, Christopher Meloni

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence, action and destruction, and for some language

I’m going to start this review with a caveat: I’m a giant Superman nerd. He’s always been my favorite superhero. I used to read the comics religiously and for the most part I have liked every one of the movies…even the bad ones. This movie would have to have been really bad (I’m talking Green Lantern bad) for me not to enjoy it. So knowing that, please read the below review through that lens. (more…)








Rob’s Review: Man of Steel

Letter Grade:
(?)

B+
The Good:

Shot beautifully.
Crowe does very well in a part that's bigger than you'd expect.
Action scenes are excellent.


The Bad:

Amy Adams is miscast as Lois Lane.
A lot of good CGI, but also some bits of really bad CGI.
The nit-picky among us will find fault in the plot.

Cast & Crew:

Writer: David S. Goyer
Director: Zack Snyder
Stars: Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Michael Shannon, Diane Lane, Russell Crowe, Harry Lennix, Richard Schiff, Christopher Meloni, Kevin Costner, Laurence Fishburne

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence, action and destruction, and for some language

Superman has always been a bit of a troublesome superhero. A little too good, a little too perfect, a little too indestructible… Very Golden Age. It’s hard to fit him into a postmodern, ironic world. With Man of Steel Zack Snyder and Christopher Nolan take their crack at modernizing Supes with their take on his origin story. (I believe my general disdain for origin stories has been well documented.) I think they’re attempt has generally worked, though the traditionalist in my has its hackles up a bit. (more…)








Final Trailer: Man of Steel

One final trailer for Man of Steel before it come out next week.

Man of Steel is directed by Zach Snyder, the director who brought us 300 and The Watchmen (and Sucker Punch), and produced by Christopher Nolan, who brought us the Dark Knight Trilogy,Inception, andMemento. This time we get another crack at his origin story and fellow Kryptonian General Zod once again invades Earth. Stars Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Russell Crowe, Michael Shannon, Diane Lane, Laurence Fishburne, and Kevin Costner. In Theaters June 14th.








New Trailer: Man of Steel

New trailer for Superman’s latest reboot, this time focusing more on Michael Shannon’s General Zod.

Man of Steel is directed by Zach Snyder, the director who brought us 300 and The Watchmen (and Sucker Punch), and produced by Christopher Nolan, who brought us the Dark Knight Trilogy,Inception, and Memento. This time we get another crack at his origin story and fellow Kryptonian General Zod once again invades Earth. Stars Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Russell Crowe, Michael Shannon, Diane Lane, Laurence Fishburne, and Kevin Costner. In Theaters June 14th.

 








Summer Movie Preview: June

It’s time for the next installment of our summer movie preview, this time we look all the way into June, 2013. “Zombies”, and Monsters, and Shakespeare, oh my!

The Internship

Release Date: June 7th

Synopsis: Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson get laid off and enter an internship program at Google where they must compete with younger, smarter interns for a job with the search giant. Also features Rose Byrne, B.J. Novak, Josh Gad, and Aasif Mandvi. Directed by Shawn Levy (Real Steel, Date Night, and the Night at the Museum franchise).

Our Thoughts:

Rob: I have a feeling that, for better or worse, you’re going to get exactly what you expect out of this one.

Jennie: I hope this movie is funnier than the trailer suggests. Also, am I the only one who thinks it’s strange that the old guy in the wheelchair knows who Charles Xavier is but they don’t have any clue?

Dave: I got to imagine if you’re an old, bald, professor in a wheelchair, you hear the reference from time to time.

Dave: I think the trailer looks funny enough. I generally enjoy the combination of Vaughn and Wilson, but I foresee waiting to see this one on on DVD. Looks like it may be the type of movie that shows you the funniest stuff in the trailer…but i guess you never know.

Nicki: I love this team. They could read the phone book and make me laugh. Just the scene of “What? What?!” alone, makes me want to see it.

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