SPY || June 5th, 2015

Entourage-poster ENTOURAGE || Based on the HBO series that ran for eight seasons, the Mark Wahlberg inspired bro-series makes its debut on the big screen with the entire crew returning. Plus, with tons of cameos, one even from Wahlberg himself, if you were a fan of the show, I’ve heard this is just about the same as an extended extra episode. Whether this will spawn a series of films is unknown yet, but kudos for getting it this far.
InsidiousChapter3-poster INSIDIOUS CHAPTER 3 || Actually not “Chapter 3” but a prequel, “Insidious 3” jumps into the life of a young girl who is stalked by a dangerous supernatural entity. This prequel exists to give Elise Rainier (Lin Shaye) a back story, giving some pretext to her involvement in the first and second films. As far as the trailer is concerned, however, this horror film offers very little in terms of anything new, but because I’ve seen the other two, I feel an obligation to see this one as well.
Spy-poster SPY || Said to be Melissa McCarthy’s most showcase role yet, “Spy” is an action comedy that definitely does not take itself too seriously, like say “The Heat,” which was unwilling to poke fun at itself. I actually saw an earlier version of the film and the best part of the film by far was Jason Statham making fun of the persona he has created in his action films. Don’t completely trust the trailer for the film, as McCarthy steps out from behind the desk as the awkward woman and takes on a commanding role that really must be seen to be believed.

BeyondTheMask-poster BEYOND THE MASK || Set during the Revolutionary War, “Beyond The Mask” sees its protagonist being double-crossed by his employer the British East India Company. Having been a mercenary, he wore a mask and returns to this life to get revenge. Working alongside the woman of his eye as well as Benjamin Franklin, the costumes and set designs are there, but the acting is a bit stiff, and this is also said to have some Christian undertones that are not apparent in the trailer.
CharliesCountry-poster2 CHARLIE’S COUNTRY || If your film is set in Australia and contains aboriginals in some capacity, it seems that chances are David Gulpilil is one of those men. He’s been starring in films as an aboriginal for decades and his latest sees him in the starring role, titled “Charlie’s Country”. The official Academy Award foreign language selection from Australia, the film sees Gulpilil as an aboriginal, searching to find his place in the changed world around him. With officers taking away his hunting tools and even his hunting kills, he looks to return to the world that he left behind.
DawnPatrol-poster DAWN PATROL || Even if this didn’t look like an episode of “The O.C.,” the fact that “Dawn Patrol” has a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a 1/2 star on RogerEbert.com tells me everything I need to know… it’s not good. The misogyny discussed in the Ebert review is apparent in the trailer, with women in bikinis being called out and displayed blatantly throughout. Scott Eastwood is a bright young star, but chances are he is not nearly talented enough to get this to rise above.
DukalesDream-poster DUKALE’S DREAM || Thank God for men like Hugh Jackman. He’s a huge Hollywood actor, but his social status and lifestyle means more than just fame and money, as he openly gives back. “Dukale’s Dream” is documentary proof of that, as he heads to Ethiopia and shines a light on a local coffee farmer who lives in poverty and fights each day to get his family food, all while his situation could easily be fixed by getting fare pay for his coffee beans. Jackman even discusses how embarrassed he feels while he lives how he does and Dukale lives in squander, working harder than anyone. It’s heartwarming for a film like this to come to light and for Jackman to get so involved to the point of even selling Dukale’s coffee himself.
TheEncounter-poster THE ENCOUNTER || “Five days ago, the world changed” is the first thing you’ll hear in the trailer for “The Encounter”. Basically a student film, with low quality picture and sound, the film is an alien science fiction film that comes off like horror, but with stiff performances and deliveries, your guess is as good as mine as to what this is about. Kudos to whatever student or low budget film-maker took a shot on this, delivering some basic visual effects. But they’ve got a long way before they’re entering into Spielberg’s territory.
EveryLastChild-poster EVERY LAST CHILD || As civilized as we may think we are, it’s films like “Every Last Child” that point out that we still have a long way to go. Polio is a disease that should have been eradicated in our lifetime, but instead, it is running rampant in Pakistan and the new threat is that there are groups of people that will kill Polio workers because they do not truly understand the science and medicine taking place, which is basically crying “witchcraft” or blaming them for developments in children despite there being no truth to the lies. But as long as there are documentaries like this to point out injustices, hopefully there is still something we can do to actually get rid of the disease before it becomes a bigger deal.
Freedom-poster FREEDOM || Exploring two different stories about the search for freedom in slavery, “Freedom” feels like a History channel movie rather than a feature film. Starring Cuba Gooding Jr. as a slave that escapes his master and goes on the run, he is told a story from 100 years prior about a white ship master that helped his great grandfather during passage over the sea. There’s nothing quite powerful or awe-inspiring here and is not set apart from anything you could find on cable.
HungryHearts-poster HUNGRY HEARTS || Being compared to Hitchcock and Polanski, “Hungry Hearts” takes a straight-up drama and instills a tinge of thrilling suspense to it. Adam Driver and Alba Rohrwacher play a married couple that has a baby. Sounds nice, but as the trailer depicts it, suddenly friends and family are contacting the couple, wondering where they went or why they haven’t seen them. Turns out, they never leave their apartment, because Alba believes in cleanliness and purity in its most basic form, meaning no doctors and no outside interference. As Driver looks to find a way to help, the thing that resonates the most is his mother telling him she’s psychotic. Despite the dark, thrilling nature, it’s just not dark enough, but it’s nice to see Driver take on a different role.
LarryGayeRenegadeMaleFlightAttendant-poster LARRY GAYE: RENEGADE MALE FLIGHT ATTENDANT || Please do not tell me his name is Larry Gaye just for the joke in the meeting room, “which one of you here is Gaye” and everyone raises their hands. Once again, I wonder how this film scooped up stars like Stanley Tucci, Henry Winkler, and Rebecca Romijn with such blatantly bad jokes. Apparently, it is also a spoof comedy, much in the vein of the film “Airplane!” but wanting to be something and actually being something are two very different things.
LoveAndMercy-poster LOVE & MERCY || Being talked about as one of the best films of the summer, “Love & Mercy” stars Paul Dano and John Cusack at different points in the life of the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson. Dano depicts the young musician during the rise of his band while Cusack plays the older Wilson, dealing with an overbearing therapist in Paul Giamatti who believes he’s suffering from a mental disorder. Elizabeth Banks looks refreshing as well, as Cusack’s love interest, who looks beyond the craziness Cusack is involved in, to continue a relationship with him.
TheNightmare-poster THE NIGHTMARE || You may remember director Rodney Ascher from his documentary “Room 237,” which took a look at different conspiracies regarding the film “The Shining.” Now, Rodney delivers a documentary about real accounts of what is known as sleep paralysis in which people are stuck in-between the sleeping and waking world, without being able to move, but conjuring some of the scariest things imaginable. Paired with the real accounts is reenactments of what is being described, and it is being sold as one of the scariest documentaries ever.
PatchTown-poster PATCH TOWN || Someone decided that the idea of Cabbage Patch Kids was not destitute for just a child’s toy but needed to flesh it out into an actual thing. That’s where “Patch Town” comes in, as it explores a world where children are harvested from cabbages and sent out as children’s play toys. Living, breathing babies. Definitely a future that someone could imagine, but the film sees one of the workers finding out they are all discarded toys and decides to go look for his mother. But the corporation is not keen on letting people leave apparently. The production quality is actually pretty decent on this one, but the acting is atrocious to the point that even the trailer gets overbearing.
PigeonSatOnABranch-poster A PIGEON SAT ON A BRANCH REFLECTING ON EXISTENCE || Purely just on a visual level, I want to see this film. But combined with its take on human existence and the dark comedic nature of the film, it looks like quite the foreign film in general. The scenes are masterfully crafted with great attention to detail, depicting people doing normal, everyday things, but framed in a way that is visually appealing. Along with that comes what one critic describes as “a master class is comic timing”.
PoliceStoryLockdown-poster POLICE STORY: LOCKDOWN || Believe it or not, Jackie Chan is 61 years old and he’s still making action films and receiving acclaim like “Jackie Chan is still at the top of his game.” That being said, 90% of the trailer for his latest film, “Police Story: Lockdown” is action, fighting scenes with zero detail shown to the story of the film, which tells me there isn’t much. Likely following in the footsteps of the successful “Raid” series, gritty, martial art action films need even less attention to detail than ever before. But this looks miles away from either of those films.
TestamentOfYouth-poster TESTAMENT OF YOUTH || Alicia Vikander is an actress that will amount to great things and for that I will follow her career each step of the way, including her latest period piece, “Testament Of Youth”. Set during WWI and told through the eyes of a female, the film delves into a romance separated by war. Vikander and Kit Harington (Jon Snow of “Game Of Thrones) are the lovers and plenty of familiar British faces show up including actresses Emily Watson and Hayley Atwell. Although the film lands a little hollow, these names are enough to at least illicit a viewing.
UnitedPassions-poster UNITED PASSIONS || Along with the sudden spike in soccer popularity around the world and the news of the corrupt FIFA making headlines, go figure that a film about the start of the association and the first World Cup would spring into theaters. Sam Neill plays FIFA president and Tim Roth plays his right-hand man. And even the film delves into the corruptions of the group, with Roth stating, “I don’t know where the money’s gone.” But overall, this is a film that almost focuses on the wrong thing, as very few people actually care about what goes on in the corporate side of sports.
WildHorses-poster2 WILD HORSES || As big a get as Robert Duvall, James Franco, and Josh Hartnett is, “Wild Horses” still cannot overcome its small natured, no-story-worth-telling demeanor. Duvall even takes it a step further as writer and director of the film, but what the film ends up being is a lesson for each actor. Duvall’s role comes a little close to his role in “The Judge” as he’s being targeted for a crime. Franco proves that even though he can sometimes be a good actor, most of the time he is very stiff. And Hartnett proves that he deserves better and that his best days, and even award winning days, may still be ahead of him.


  • Entourage
  • Insidious: Chapter 3


  • Spy


  • Love & Mercy



  • The Nightmare
  • A Pigeon Sat On A Branch Reflecting On Existence
  • Testament Of Youth


  • Beyond The Mask
  • Charlie’s Country
  • Dawn Patrol
  • Dukale’s Dream
  • The Encounter
  • Every Last Child
  • Freedom
  • Hungry Hearts
  • Larry Gaye: Renegade Male Flight Attendant
  • Patch Town
  • Police Story: Lockdown
  • United Passions
  • Wild Horses



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s