There’s a scene midway through X-MEN: APOCALYPSE where a few young new members are having a discussion as they are walking out of a theater showing RETURN OF THE JEDI (The story takes place in the 1980’s).
Director Bryan Singer returns for his fourth X-MEN film and appears to have lost his passion for the subject. In DAYS OF FUTURE PAST, Quicksilver (Evan Peters) was a highlight in an already very good film.  Once again his character steals the show as the one shining light within the mediocrity. If you’ve ever heard the old saying “Be careful what you wish for…you may get it,” then you have something in common with chef and restaurant owner Rene’ Redzepi.  When we first meet him he is beaming from ear to ear as his restaurant, NOMA, is named the number one restaurant in the world for an amazing third straight year.  Where else can you go from there?
Sometimes a great actress can make an average movie seem better than it is and that’s the case with JOY. Although the story of Joy is interesting, there was something about the character, her surrounding family support system and the story itself that was a little off-putting. Although it’s admirable how the main character pulled herself up from such a disparate situation and took matters into her own hands in several instances and eventually became a success, the problem is that her journey was more frustrating than uplifting. Joy, Strength and Perseverance (20:22) An interesting piece featuring some nice interviews with the cast and crew. It’s difficult to be a connoisseur of parody movies when the last memorable one was created over a decade and a half ago.
While I could care less about Freidberg and Seltzer’s inevitable decay into obscurity, it’s unfortunate seeing one of the Wayans fail to live up to their potential, especially Marlon who we’ve seen in REQUIEM FOR A DREAM and IN LIVING COLOR. The post Post Civil War: 10 movies still to look forward to this summer appeared first on Flix 66. Direct-to-video action flicks do have a lower standard to uphold than wide release movies of the same genre. The biggest name is this action opus is Dolph Lundgren, AKA Ivan Drago, who specializes in these sorts of films. Meanwhile Jack left behind incriminating evidence against Balam and many of the city officials. While working at Life magazine in the 1950s, photographer Robert Drew began to ponder why documentary films were so stale in style.
The post The Kennedy Films of Robert Drew & Associates Criterion Collection Blu-ray Review appeared first on Flix 66. In 1960, Drew launched Drew Associates, with the intent on bringing a certain {ahem} life to the documentary that still images were capturing at the time. The films compiled for this release are strictly focused on the campaigns, victories and death of John F. FACES OF NOVEMBER (1964) was never supposed to be made—not four years after Drew and associates first met Kennedy, at least.
Throughout the films, the style and approach is aimed to capture events as they happen, to be in the thick of the thickest.
Considering that the films were shot on 16mm more than 50 years ago, it’s expected that the footage would be in fairly rough shape. Also included with this Criterion Collection release is an essay by documentary film curator and writer Thom Powers. I was not at all prepared for THE DANISH GIRL, an independent film that is, from beginning to end, quite lovely.
While these may be the facts I do not think they were wrong to have been changed for the purposes of this story. Add to that the competent filmmaking of Tom Hooper, no stranger to these types of historical (although I use the term here somewhat loosely given how contemporary this piece is) biopics with his work on THE KING’S SPEECH and ELIZABETH I, though I daresay I enjoyed Redmayne and Vikander’s performances more than the Oscar-nominated performances with his past work. The Making of THE DANISH GIRL (11:29) The only special feature on the blu-ray, it’s a bit disappointing.
Jubilee argues that THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK is still the best, while Cyclops believes A NEW HOPE is better because it started it all.  Meanwhile, Jean Grey proclaims that we can all agree that the third film is always the worst.
As a fan of the X-Men series and the actors they’ve cast, the film still entertains on a certain superhero level, albeit an extremely low one.  The story idea and basic outline is actually an intriguing raise the stakes scenario for the the X-Men universe.
A lot of time is spent setting things up and creating grand gestures that have little payoff.
Powerful and frightening, Apocalypse recruits his own team named The Four Horseman (the biblical references don’t go much deeper than name). He breathes a much needed energy into the picture that overpowers much of the flat dialogue and stale tone.
Sadly, there just isn’t enough heart or personality for the audience to fully invest into X-MEN: APOCALYPSE. The opening credit sequence is particularly exciting and overall I would say the technique is excellent.
Russell and star Jennifer Lawrence follows the story of Joy (Lawrence), a divorced mother of two, who takes care of her kids, her mother and sometimes her father and ex-husband.
Make no mistake that Jennifer Lawrence is the reason that JOY is tolerable and her charisma and talent are what holds this film together. Her mother, father and step-sister were obnoxious which was obviously the point, but it was this thing off in the background that made you pity and even dislike Joy because she couldn’t stand up and take more charge of her life that was being run by outside sources. Unfortunately, there was nothing terribly stand-out about the film and it leaves the audience feeling less than satisfied. SCARY MOVIE does have a connection to FIFTY SHADES OF BLACK though, and it’s the obvious one. Of course those were years ago and seemingly so far away, especially with a WHITE CHICKS 2 in the works.


I haven’t seen FIFTY SHADES OF GREY so I’m not sure if this is a beat-by-beat follow of the book and movie, but I can piece together that it probably is. There are a couple of enlightened moments, such as Black being an overt stalker and premature ejaculator, and a white girl that seems OK with saying every horrible racist, sexist thing that comes to mind. If clearly fake, prosthetic penises, slurpy sexual gestures and jokes you told in middle school to your classmates don’t tickle your funny bone, you’re going to hate every minute of this movie. THE NICE GUYS (May 20) – Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe as a comedic buddy cop duo set in the 1970’s sounds a bit of a reach but when you factor in the film is directed and written by Shane Black (KISS KISS BANG BANG, IRON MAN 3), it becomes a lot more interesting. He plays a mysterious prisoner named William in a maximum security facility where the guards wear Darth Vader style masks. Call it cinema verite or direct cinema or observational filmmaking or reality filmmaking or something else entirely. Shot in five days and spanning less than one hour (a shorter version, edited by Leacock, is half of that), the documentary’s finest moments emphasize how different citizens view the candidates and how these candidates treat the citizens. JFK was such a fan of the documentary that he had Drew and associates continue their own trail. In June of 1963, Governor George Wallace made his Stand in the Schoolhouse Door at the University of Alabama, opposing the desegregation of the school, specifically the admittance of James Hood and Vivian Malone. Without narration, the 12-minute film depicts the funeral of JFK, quietly yet bravely noting the loss found not just in his family, but the country. Lightweight 16mm cameras slide through crowds and bump open a path just as a person (chiefly Kennedy) would. Some damage remains and there are noticeable scratches throughout, but this transfer has cleaned up much of this, giving the films their finest-looking home video presentation to date. Pennebaker and film critic Gideon Bachmann, this track offers a nice talk about how the film was done. Kennedy and the 48 Hours That Made History, reflects on JFK and discusses some of the footage that was not included in the final cut of CRISIS. Dramas, especially those featuring brilliant acting and writing, acting, art direction, cinematography… they can be so difficult to watch sometimes; I have to get myself in the mood for them, even though I love to watch movies and try to watch everything I can. This is a fictionalized love story based, somewhat loosely, on the true story and somewhat documented account (thanks to her journals, which were later published as a collected work) of Lili who was asked to write about her experience and feelings as she was in the process of undergoing one of the first sex change operations.
For example, Einar Wegener was married to Gerda Wegener for 22 years before first of six operations occurred for the sex change which would ultimately result in Lili and Einar’s death, when she was 47 years old. THE DANISH GIRL as a historical piece of narrative fiction has connection points for a broader audience and a contextual atmosphere that is established without the need for lengthy exposition. Maybe partly it is the subject matter, feeling like this whole thing is just timely for the world in which we’re living, or maybe it’s just the fact that these are two fine actors giving some absolutely phenomenal performances. Too short to cover everything you maybe hoped it might have, but covering just enough that maybe you feel like it is almost, almost worth it.
While it might be a bit tongue in cheek, X-MEN: APOCALYPSE fulfills this self referential joke by being the weakest X-Men film among the new class. A decade after the events from X-MEN DAYS OF FUTURE PAST, life’s very first mutant, Apocalypse, awakens to eliminate the weak and achieve world domination. I’m looking at you Magneto’s new family.  I’m not sure why a decade needed to go by either, but the fact that none of the characters have aged or really progressed much in life was a bit confusing and distracting. Magneto (Michael Fassbender), Professor X (James McAvoy), Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), Beast (Nicholas Holt) and for some odd reason that doesn’t have any substantial bearing to the story, agent Moira Mactaggert (Rose Byrne) all return.
His hero moment is absolutely incredible and the applied effect to demonstrate his character’s speed and personality is infectiously fun. Along with a certain clawed regenerative mutant making his obligatory cameo in a most ferociously effective manner, Quicksilver’s scenes nearly make up for all the film’s shortcomings.
Her dreams of going to college and creating things with her hands were put on the backburner while she was taking care of her family, and she feels like she’s stuck in a rut until one day an idea hits her.
Even her supporting cast, which includes Bradley Cooper, Robert De Niro and Virginia Madsen, didn’t do much for the film and they spent most of their time stepping back and letting Lawrence shine. Marlon Wayans, just like Jason Freidberg and Aaron Seltzer, have used SCARY MOVIE as a leaping off point for the rest of their careers, which apparently is half-brained ideas and cheap parody films. While I, along with others, am immensely disappointed with his movie choices of late, you can’t fault him for giving it his all. Black is interviewed by Hannah (Hawk), a mousy, virgin girl writing an article for her school newspaper. But then the movie seems to turn around and use that same humor in a less flattering, and disgusting fashion.
Sometimes I laughed, but I’m not above saying I’m mature enough to not laugh at something that I should be shamed for. Shane Black is also the creator of LETHAL WEAPON and will be teaming up with the same producer, so my trust in the material continues to grow.  Lets just hope the actors can pull their weight.
Director  John Lee Hancock has had his hands in a few audience pleasing films before (SAVING MR.
William shuffles along at a slow pace and wears glasses to signify that he’s nonthreatening. Reese shows off his considerable karate skills as wave after wave of prisoners and guards take their shot at Jack.
What it did, with the necessary aid of names such as Richard Leacock (who had previously worked on MONTEREY POP and a slew of others), Albert Maysles (who, with his brother David, would helm such essentials as SALESMAN, GIMME SHELTER and GREY GARDENS) and D.A. ADVENTURES ON THE NEW FRONTIER picks up in the early days of Kennedy’s time in office, with Humphrey a long-gone concern. In front of Drew’s cameras, the Kennedy administration (including brother Robert and deputy attorney general Nicholas Katzenbach) must decide how to handle the blockade and potential riots as all eyes in America were watching.


Sometimes they sit, watching and listening as the President of the United States and his team talk and make decisions that can change the country. I still find myself so emotionally invested as to lose myself completely within the story and while this can be greatly enjoyable in the case of a romantic comedy or a really well-made drama I can find myself emotionally drained. Her journal(s) are one of the centerpieces for the modern transgender-movement and the basis for THE DANISH GIRL. Had the writers chosen to tell the story directly from the historical context, the emotional message and contextual atmosphere might have been lost and this is one case where I can actually understand the reasoning behind changing the story for the message.
Sadly, the poor execution through a lack of character development and personality in a universe full of interesting characters with deep internal struggles, doesn’t offer anything to truly care about.
The film follows Joy as she invents her product and deals with the issues of starting and running a small business. Russell, but JOY was a misfire and maybe a warning sign that Russell needs someone to keep him in check, even when he manages to assemble such a great cast. While it may seem like FIFTY SHADES OF BLACK has some underlying social commentary, it seems like Wayans and others simply wanted to open an umbrella of offensiveness and hope to get everyone under it. Also Wayan is a clear believer in his humor and when he sells it as well as he does, you can’t help but admire him for it.
BANKS, THE BLIND SIDE, THE ROOKIE), but I think the key to this one will be the casting of Michael Keaton, making the life story of a possibly unlikable character likable.
This will never be said in the same breath as “Die Hard”, but it gets the job done in what it is trying to accomplish. He acts like he doesn’t have all his facilities as he works in a janitorial role in the prison. Everything is well choreographed and the stunt people seem to take great glee in slamming people into bars and tables.
We see that Humphrey goes from person to person to shake hands, while Kennedy waits for voters to come to him.
Drew utilized three film crews to simultaneously capture what was occurring in Washington and Alabama. They often move, held in hands fortunate enough to be involved in movements both political and cinematic. Preservation of the three Academy Film Archive fine-grain positives was done by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science in collaboration with The Film Foundation.
And yet, sometimes the story can remind me just how beautiful the human spirit can be – even if it makes me cry repeatedly. The love story at the center of the film also appears to be heavily fictionalized because Gerda and Einar’s marriage was apparently well-known to have been open with Gerda living as a lesbian through much of their marriage and was in another relationship at the time of Lili’s death, allegedly learning of it a decade later. How many times must we see Professor X and Magneto have the same argument about humanity?  I understand that this is the basic conflict between the frenemies, but we’ve seen prior films manage the topic in a much fresher, more interesting manner.
After much trial, error and brazen attitude, her business succeeds and she is able to help other ladies in her position. Russell is a great director, but sometimes his stories drag on too long and don’t really connect the audience with the characters on screen.
His Russian accent comes and goes and this basically provides the only humor in this picture. She experiences some problems when trying to present the material to the district attorney. It does bug me that bad guys still take on the hero one by one instead of overpowering him or her with overwhelming numbers from all sides.
This is one grand old time that would cause major problems for the person who set it in motion. It’s subtle details like this that Drew and associates could capture to help present just the sort of story and character contrast that voters around the country needed. But perhaps this was the point, as surely not every day in the White House is booming with action.
This provides a thorough account—one of the best—of an iconic moment of the Civil Rights Movement. These fly-on-the-wall manners and this invaluable footage mold one of the most thorough, admirable and authentic accounts of any world leader. The newest members added to the universe are: Jean Grey (Sophie Turner), Cyclops (Tye Sheridan),Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee), Storm (Alexandra Shipp), Angel (Ben Hardy), Psylock (Olivia Munn).
With JOY, he spent too much time inserting the audience in the daily, boring life of Joy and I spent the first hour of the film feeling like I was watching my neighbors (not a good thing).
I only say overshadowed because it took until mid-way or by the end of the parody for me to realize it was a parody, highlighting just how outdated the joke was.
It makes no sense, but it is a time honored tradition in action films that this must be done.
The films, now nearing 55-60 years after completion, are demonstrations of how such a series can be completed.
Unfortunately, they don’t bring the same charisma that previous characters have brought.  However, there is one exception.



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