Rain Man is not an easy movie to pull off. It’s the story of a man who after the death of his estranged father, discovers he has a long lost brother. The brother in question turns out to be what they used to call an “idiot savant”. Which is about the equivalent of someone with asperger’s syndrome. Playing a character with mental disability is a really difficult thing to pull off. Without making it seem like you’re making fun of them, but Dustin Hoffman pulls it off flawlessly. His performance can elicit laughs without being degrading and feel genuine at the same time. Tom Cruise also does a good job playing a man having to deal with someone with mental disability. It’s a one of a kind movie that only this team can accomplish. A definite recommendation.
Cast Away is captivating. Holding down an entire movie is no easy feat. Tom hanks is the perfect actor to hire for the job. After watching Cast Away I can’t help but wonder if I could survive in a situation like this. It’s said that as a human, if your life is threatened in anyway, your survival instincts will kick in. So be grateful for the comfortable life that you have. Now as I’ve said previously, Cast Away is about a man who works for FedEx getting stranded on a deserted island. A large bulk of the movie takes place on the island and focuses solely on survival. Many people will remember it for Wilson the volleyball with a face. Who is perhaps the greatest inanimate object in film history. Cast Away keeps you invested beginning to end. Which is saying a lot for a movie that’s basically just a man yelling at a volleyball for 2 hours. See for yourself.
Just to clarify, Anastasia is actually a Fox Animation movie. The problem is everybody thinks it’s a Disney movie. It’s an animated musical, about a princess (well Grand Duchess actually), with a maniacal villain who has a henchmen, and even a prince (kind of). So I can understand why some people mistake this for a Disney movie. Heck it was even nominated for Best Original Song at the Oscars. Unlike everyone else however, I know a Disney movie when I see it. The pacing, characterization, and songs are just easy to identify for me. I sort of first saw Anastasia when I was in elementary school. For some reason my schools never showed us Disney animated movies. I must have seen 10 animated movies when I was in school. None of them Disney (what’s up with that?). Now that I’ve got that out of the way, how’s the story? Anastasia is about the real life disappearance of the young Grand Duchess of the same name. It’s a fine film, the characters are alright, the songs are pretty good, and it has a lasting quality. It’s just not the kind of movie I would pop in whenever and say: Hey let’s watch Anastasia! To each his own I guess.
Beetlejuice is one of Tim Burton’s all time best movies. Every kind of Tim Burton style Gothic creativity is on display. Interestingly enough, I didn’t watch Beetlejuice in the traditional way. When I was younger I didn’t care if I missed the first 10 or 15 minutes of a movie. So I actually didn’t see the first 20 minutes of Beetlejuice for the longest time when I was younger. Which is at about the time Beetlejuice shows up in the movie. Anyway about the story, it’s about a married couple who die and become ghosts and try to remove the new residence of the their house using a bio exorcist named Beetlejuice. The movie benefits strongly from Michael Keaton’s performance as the titular character. Which is equal parts funny, creepy, and quotable. Of course being a Tim Burton movie, he makes great use of makeup and claymation. Which is never too creepy for younger audiences. There are just too many good things I could say about Beetlejuice. Just don’t say it three times.
The Birdcage is unexpectedly good. Being a straight man, I don’t actively seek out LGBT movies. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. However my mom told me it was hilarious so I watched it. I’m glad I did, because it’s my favorite movie on the subject. The interesting thing about the movie is the characters. Robin Williams isn’t playing the over the top comedic role. He actually plays the straight man (no pun intended). It’s actually Nathan Lane and The Simpsons great Hank Azaria who steal the show. The humor and the craziness of the situations are what makes The Birdcage such an enjoyable film and a recommendation.
A Few Good Men is one of a few courtroom dramas that I will rewatch. I first saw the movie in my high school government class. I’m so glad I did, but not because I think I’d never see it. I probably would have ended up seeing it as part of the Tom Cruise marathon I did. Anyway, what is the plot exactly? Well, A Few Good Men is about a trial that takes place after a military hazing goes wrong. Most people only remember the famous quote “You can’t handle the truth”. While the whole movie is building to that line, it’s the fascinating court case and well written dialogue that drew me in. Also side note, the movie is only rated R for language. So even if you find courtroom dramas boring, I’m sure this will be the one exception.
The Fault in our Stars is super depressing. But what do you expect it’s about cancer. Just about everyone can relate, because just about everyone has experienced cancer or witnessed it happen at some point in their life. I actually discovered the book through alternative means. I didn’t read the book. I actually saw a Dramatic interpretation of the book (long story). After that I had a bit of an interest in seeing the movie in theaters. I even planned to bring a box of tissues, but I think there was too many other movies I wanted to see. So I waited for DVD instead. I won’t give anything away. I’ll just say that someone does die at the end and it’s soul crushingly depressing. Though the first two acts do manage to inject a bit of humor and optimism before it totally rips your heart out. It’s a modern day romance that hits close to home. See it with a Kleenex in hand.
When I first heard they were going to make an adaptation of the story of Noah, I was happy. Unlike the story of Jesus or the story of Moses, Noah hadn’t been done to a cinematic scale before. There have been imitators like Evan Almighty or 2012, but not the straightforward story in the “Book of Genesis”. Then I found out Russell Crowe was going to star and I was even more optimistic. However after I found out they were going to cut the word God out of the movie I was not pleased. So I and the rest of my family decided not to see it in theaters. Don’t get me wrong, the effects are phenomenal, and they really captured the scale of the the Ark. It’s just, if you’re going to make a christian Bible picture then it’s probably best not to cut out that part of your audience. The reason movies like The Ten Commandments and Ben-Hur worked in the past is because they knew what they were doing and they didn’t apologize for it. Quality and morals are the most important things biblical movies today need to learn. There’s just too much weirdness in Noah.
Matilda is another favorite from my childhood. One that was part of my vhs collection. I never read the book, but Matilda is my second favorite Roald Dahl movie. In case you missed out, Matilda is the story of a young girl who loves to read. She lives with her wicked family and goes to school with a wicked principle. What makes Matilda different is the fact that she has telekinetic powers. It’s a very charming, often fun, and heartfelt story. Although I do find it strange that Danny Devito directed, produced, narrated, and starred in it. I guess he was just a big fan of the book. Anyway, I’m sure you’ll enjoy Matilda. It’s a definite recommendation.
Leprechaun is perhaps the silliest horror movie ever made. It’s not scary by any stretch of the imagination. More disgusting at times. Well first I’d like to say that I know I said I wouldn’t do franchise movies. And I know Leprechaun has 5 sequels and a remake (most of which are direct-to-video anyway). Still it’s St. Patrick’s Day and this is pretty much the only movie I can review. Some day I’ll see the crappy sequels, but until then here’s the first movie. Leprechaun is the thinly told story about an evil monster leprechaun trying to take back his pot of gold. Interestingly enough this movie features a before she was famous performance by Jennifer Aniston. Which is one of the only things this movie is remembered for. There’s also a couple of other characters that are just too bizarre to fit in this movie. The leprechaun itself has gone on to become a horror icon. Though not quite to the point of Chucky or any of the other slashers. It’s just a really silly movie that if it was being taken seriously, would probably offend the irish.