Category Archives: Films


For a while I’ve been hearing about Amy Schumer talking about filming a movie with Goldie Hawn in Hawaii.  They finally released the trailer for the movie, entitled Snatched.  It appears the movie is about Schumer convincing her mom (Hawn) to go on a trip to South America, where they are kidnapped, or, rather, “snatched.”  I generally like Schumer’s stuff – it’s a bit on the disgusting side for me (e.g. I wouldn’t be surprised if in the movie that scene where she’s cleaning her privates is heavily focused on), but on the whole it’s usually worth a good chuckle.  So I am pretty intrigued by the movie.  I’m still waiting for her movie she wrote with Jennifer Lawrence.  That’ll be great.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

This past weekend I went and saw Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.  Now, I’m a huge Harry Potter fan.  I’ve read every book and seen each movie probably seventeen trillion times.  But when J.K. Rowling announced the trilogy (now a five-party movie series) of Fantastic Beasts, I was skeptical.  I mean, the “book” that the films are based off is basically a novelty item for fans that lists out a bunch of made up magical creatures – there is no plot or story in it.  I wasn’t exactly sure how Rowling could make it into a multi-part movie franchise.  But, being the loyal fan I am, I went to see it.

And, my gosh, what a good plan that was.

The film tells the story of Newt Scamander, magical zoologist and researcher for the Ministry of Magic.  Newt travels from London to America in a quest to release a beast he discovered back into its natural habitat in Arizona (that bit was confusing to me too).  Along his travels, his magical briefcase full of all the beasts he discovers is opened by a muggle (or, as the Americans apparently refer to the, No-Mag) and the beasts are lost in New York.  Newt quickly is joined by said muggle along with an ex-auror and her sister to track the animals down, along with stopping Grindelwald (the Voldemort of the ’40s).  The film has the right amount of action – will make you laugh and cry, it’s such a great film.  You don’t need to be a Harry Potter fan to enjoy it.

Table 19

I was strolling through my Facebook feed when one of my friend’s posted the trailer for the upcoming movie, Table 19.  Usually I just flick past stuff like that, but I found myself watching it.  And I got to say it looks hilarious, can’t wait to see it.

The movie stars Anna Kendrick, Lisa Kudrow, June Squibb, Stephen Merchant, and other people I don’t know who are all invited to a wedding begrudgingly and who the  hosts hoped would not show up.  They’re seated at the worst table at the wedding, and they seem to form a gang and get a long.  It’s an odd assortment of people, but the way they bond (in the trailer), looks great.

Florence Foster Jenkins

I saw an interview with Meryl Streep a year or so ago where they kept going on how great of a singer she is.  She laughed and said she didn’t know how true that was because she was working on a film where she was playing a tone-deaf opera singer.  This intrigued me, but at the time I couldn’t find any more information, so naturally it fell out of my mind.  Then, today, I went to a movie (I went to see Ghostbusters, it was quite hilarious, I recommend) and up came the trailer for Florence Foster Jenkins, the movie starring Meryl Streep playing a tone-deaf opera singer.

Needless to say, I’m excited to see Florence Foster Jenkins.  I looks like an inspiring movie, kind of like Eddie the Eagle.  I like those underdog movies where the protagonist never gives up on their dreams.  Plus, Simon Helberg, who plays Howard Wolowitz in The Big Bang Theory, plays Meryl Streep’s pianist…it was crazy seeing Wolowitz in a movie with Meryl Streep.  I always thought he deserved an Emmy for his work on Big Bang, so hopefully he’ll get an Oscar nod for this!

Eddie the Eagle

Are you in search of a good movie?  Boy, do I have one for you!  I just watched Eddie the Eagle and it was the perfect mixture of emotions that brought tears to my eyes and still made me laugh out loud.  It was so good I had to watch it again, and I can guarantee I’ll probably be watching it again soon.

The film is based of the true story of Eddie “The Eagle” Edwards.  It starts out with ten year old Eddie in a leg brace (he had bad knees) deciding he’s going to be an Olympian.  He packs his bags and tells his mom he’s off to the Olympics.  It was quite adorable, him walking determinately  to the bus stop, then his dad had to pick him up (apparently it was a usual occurrence).  The film continues to show Eddie growing up, trying to excel in sports but people telling him he would never succeed.  He is rejected again and again, until he realizes he could compete in the Olympics as a ski jumper – no one else was competing, so he’d just have to successful land during a qualifier and he would be off to the Olympics.  The movie goes through many ups and downs as the British Olympic Committee didn’t want to pay for him going to the Olympics, so they kept creating these obstacles the he kept overcoming.

Eddie the Eagle is such an inspiring and moving story.  It’s not so much a story of sports or the Olympics, but more of someone never giving up on his dream.  It makes you believe anything really is possible if you just got the right amount of nerve.  And Eddie Edwards had a ton of nerve.

The Girl On the Train

I was a big fan of the movie Gone Girl.  I didn’t actually read the book until after I saw the movie, and the only real reason (if I’m being honest) I saw the movie was because Rosamund Pike got nominated for an Oscar for her role as Amy Elliot-Dunne…that was the year I decided to watch all (well, most) of the Oscar nominees.  Regardless, I enjoyed the way Gillian Flynn (both the author and screenwriter) crafted the story so that in the beginning you were for one character and against the other, and then it so dramatically switched.  The ebbs and flows of the story, the twists and turns, really drew me in – and I’m not the kind of guy who likes thrillers.   So when I heard Paula Hawkins’ book The Girl On the Train  was going to be “the next Gone Girl,” I immediately picked up a copy.  Also, I heard it was becoming a movie, and I wanted to read it before seeing the film….I felt reading Gone Girl before would’ve been better than seeing the film first, it felt kind of pointless reading it once I knew how it ended.  But I got to say, after reading The Girl On the Train, I’m not really that excited for the movie.

First, let me just say whoever told me that The Girl On the Train was the next Gone Girl lied.  Gone Girl was freaky/demented, but there wasn’t anything exactly thrilling about The Girl On the Train.  She literally sits on a train, drunk, and thinks she witnesses a murder.  No one believes her because she’s an alcoholic and is unemployed (she lost her job for being drunk), so she spends the whole time trying to remember what happened a night she blacked out (the night of the alleged murder).  *SPOILER ALERT* Turns out she was right the whole time and the person she thought committed the murder did.

With Gone Girl, you have no idea where it’s going.  When you think you know, the plot changes and we go somewhere else.  But, I didn’t really get that with The Girl On the Train.  Now, I’m not hating on Paula Hawkins or her novel.  It was rather interesting and I did finish the book after all – which says something, I usually just stop reading a book if it’s terrible.  It’s just, in my opinion, I wouldn’t qualify The Girl On the Train as a thriller.  And I definitely would not compare it to Gone Girl.  I know the trailer makes it look like it, but to me it wasn’t as freaky.

Maybe it’s just how I read the book and when I see it on screen it will be demented and thrilling…also, how much do you want to bet Emily Blunt will get nominated for an Oscar for this role?  Just saying…

Melissa McCarthy is the Boss

Ithe boss knew I wanted to see The Boss the second I saw the official movie poster.  It features Melissa McCarthy posed with her feet on her desk with a portrait of her in the exact same pose.  After watching the trailer, I had the slight feeling it would be one of those movies where the trailer is the only hilarious part.  I mean, McCarthy has this tendency to be slightly over the top (i.e. disgusting) in her comedy.  I mean, let us all remember the Bridesmaids scene where she essentially dropped heat in the sink of a bathroom.  But I didn’t care, I generally enjoy McCarthy’s work. And, I got to say, I really enjoyed the film.  I may actually see it again (although, I’ll probably just wait for the DVD…movie tickets are so expensive these days).

The Boss tells the story of Michelle Darnell (McCarthy), a wealthy and powerful business woman who gets arrested for insider trading.  Upon being released from prison, she learns that she has lost everything and must stay with her former assistant (Kristen Bell) until she can reclaim her wealth and stature.

I saw different interviews with McCarthy where she said she created Michelle Darnell almost fifteen years ago when she was doing improv at the Groundlings, and that this character just stayed with her.  She also said that because she kept thinking about the character, she decided to write a full outline of the character’s story eight years ago but no film studios were interested it back then.  She credited that to be the climate of the film industry then, but I think part of it has to do with the fact that eight years ago she just ended Gilmore Girls and was only landing small roles in rather obscure movies…her breakthrough in Bridesmaids hadn’t happened yet.  But still, it’s interesting that this film/character wasn’t an overnight idea – she spent fifteen years creating it/her.

I found The Boss to be entertaining throughout.  Some of the jokes were a bit dirty – which, frankly, is to be expected…it’s Rated R – but there’s a great sword fight between McCarthy and Peter Dinklage and a scene where McCarthy raps a whole verse from DJ Khaled’s song “All I Do is Win.”  I can honestly say that the movie wasn’t a let down and there are more hilarious bits than just what’s in the trailer.

Saoirse Ronan’s Accent Challenge

I saw an interview where Saorise Ronan explained that every film she makes, she does a different accent than her own, especially if she’s playing an Irish character like she did in Brooklyn.

This interested me and I wondered what her American accent would sound like…a lot of times when non-American actors do American accents you can tell they’re fake.  I found the below clip of her doing a wide range of accents (why the guy had her say “we are never ever getting back together” over and over again, I have no idea), but her American is particularly good/hilarious.


I recently watched Brooklyn, and I’ve got to say it’s one of my favorite movies…probably of all times.  It’s such a sweet love story, and Saoirse Ronan is perfect in the film.  Her performance is full of innocence and wisdom – she definitely deserved her Oscar nomination (I would argue she deserved the Oscar).

Brooklyn tells the story of a young woman, Eilis Lacey (Ronan), who immigrates to America from Ireland to find work and a better life, and in doing so she finds herself and discovers a new world.  In the film (and book, but mostly the film), Eilis grows up so much – she starts out as a young, naive girl who blossoms into a woman who knows her path in life.  From the heartbreaking scenes where Eilis is homesick and dearly misses her family to uplifting scenes of her falling in love (with an Italian boy), Eilis must determine what kind of life she wants to live (and not the life others want her to have).

Ronan as Eilis walking out into America

Ronan as Eilis walking out into America

The thing that really hit home with me was the scene where she arrives in America and is making her way through immigration.  She gets her passport stamped and she walks through the doors to the outside world.  Ronan as Eilis looks like a nervous and slightly scared girl as she walks through the door into a white light with this beautiful Irish music playing.  To me, it was a haunting scene, as though she is a ghost from the 1950s.  My ancestors immigrated to America from Ireland and Italy when they were the same age as Eilis (or younger), and I could just see them being as nervous and scared as her.  It was symbolic for me of the journey my ancestors made to America for a better life (for them and their future family).  If it wasn’t for their courage and strength to live an a foreign world, I would not be here.

Brooklyn is such a timeless and beautifully told story.  I would seriously recommend it.

Who You Gonna Call?

They’ve finally released the trailer for the new Ghostbusters movie, starring Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jordan.  I was first intrigued about this remake of the classic movie because they switched all the gender roles: they made the male leads female and they even turned the female secretary into a male (Chris Hemsworth).

I’m not really a Ghostbusters  fan, mostly because I haven’t seen the original movies (so I can’t say I like or hate them…I’m neutral)…but I’m actually excited about this film.  I do think Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy can get a bit over the top with their comedy (let us not forget the bathroom scene from Bridesmaids) but I typically enjoy their films nonetheless.  I also think Melissa McCarthy plays “possessed by a ghost” real well in this trailer.

This movie has the potential to be really funny, especially with the great cast.  But I also have a feeling that it may be a flop.  It may appear they tried too hard to make it a hit that it’s not actually funny.  That’s the challenge with making such a remake: the originals are so beloved that if you’re going to remake it you have to do it better, which is difficult.  It’s like when musicians cover other artists’ hit songs: they have to make the song their own and, in that way, better.

Anyway, we’ll see how it goes.  I’m excited to see the film, and I plan on seeing it in theaters (and if you’ve followed this blog long enough, you know that means something).