Archive for February, 2012

This Means War

I’ve been disappointed by a lot of recent romantic comedies and wasn’t sure if This Means War would fall into that category, so I was pleased when I enjoyed it.

This Means War is about two CIA operatives, FDR and Tuck, who accidentally start dating the same woman. Instead of one of them bowing out, they decide to continue in a “let the best man win” type of bet. Of course they resort to using spy tactics on each other, which is where a lot of the movie’s humor comes from.

A weakness of the movie comes from the relationship between Lauren, the double-dated woman, and her best friend Trish, played by Chelsea Handler. I think the role was probably made outrageous for Handler. Almost everything she said was vulgar and ridiculous. It made me wonder why they two would even remain friends.

The movie might have too convenient of an ending, but it was still enjoyable and entertaining. There were moments where it fell flat, but it was still better than a lot of recent comedies.

Oscars

I wasn’t able to watch the Oscars last night, but they seemed to have mostly turned out as I thought they would. I was expecting The Artist to win big, and it did.

I’ve been finding it harder and harder to get excited about the Oscars. The last time I remember looking forward to watching the show would have been the year The Return of the King was up for thirteen awards.

I did miss watching it this year, but I also wish I cared more. I do hope the host was better than last year, because that was a bit of a disaster.

Quote Quiz 2.24.12 – ANSWERS

1. “I’ve successfully privatized world peace. What more do you want?” – Tony Stark, Ironman 2

2. “I have a cow and I sew. How’s that for ‘hard to relate to’?” – Graham, The Holiday

3. “I pledge allegiance… to the band… of Mr. Schneebly… and will not fight him… for creative control… and will defer to him on all issues related to the musical direction of the band.” – Dewey Finn, The School of Rock

4. “Please sir, I want some more.” - Oliver Twist

The Voice

I started watching The Voice on the recommendation of one of my friends. It was a recommendation well worth listening to.

The Voice is a little bit like American Idol, since they are both vocal competition shows. However, contestants on The Voice are picked by one of four coaches (sometimes they all want one contestant, in which case the contestant chooses which coach they want) while performing in a blind audition. They’re called “blind” auditions because the coaches can’t see the singers, so they have to judge them solely on their voices. It’s quite an interesting idea.

Oh, and the coaches? They are Cee Lo Green, Blake Shelton, Adam Levine, and Christina Aguilera. In other words, people who clearly know a thing or two about music.

The Voice is innovative, especially for reality TV, and rather addicting. I’m looking forward to seeing what the next stage has in store!

Quote Quiz 2.17.12 – ANSWERS

1. “I was thinking, you know, we have a surplus of dragon-fighting Vikings, but do we have enough bread-making Vikings, or small home-repair Vikings?” – Hiccup, How to Train Your Dragon

2. “I ask for so little. Just fear me, love me, do as I say and I will be your slave.” – Jareth, Labyrinth

3. “Do you know what I am doing, Miss Kenton? I am placing my mind elsewhere while you chatter away.” – Stevens, The Remains of the Day

4. “Any of you boys want to shoot, now’s the time. There isn’t one of us that doesn’t want to be someplace else. But this is what we do, who we are. Live for nothing, or die for something. Your call.” – Rambo, Rambo (2008)

5. “And then one day, my wife turned into this remarkable creature that could sit on the end of a broom stick and take off. She could actually achieve flight.” – Dave, See No Evil, Hear No Evil

Downton fever

I have caught Downton Abbey fever! A lot of people seem to have caught it as well.

I’m off to catch up on season two so I won’t feel so out of the loop.

Safe House

Denzel Washington just might be one of our best living actors. He’s not held down by genre or type-casting. He’s brilliant. And he shines in Safe House. He plays a rogue CIA agent, Tobin Frost, who is able to manipulate people and fight them off with hand-to-hand combat, often in the same scene.

It would have been easy to be overpowered by him, but Ryan Reynolds holds his own. He doesn’t over-act or make himself look better or tougher than his character is. Reynolds’ character, Matt Weston, is a CIA agent with no experience who gets tasked with keeping track of Frost. Of course, nothing works out as planned.

Safe House is a good thriller, showing the seedy underside of espionage, especially the need to mistrust everyone. It’s an engaging and entertaining movie. If you like action and thriller movies, you should watch this one, if only for Washington.

Quote Quiz 2.10.12 – ANSWERS

1. “Actually, we came to visit your flat-screen. First Mariners game of the season. Plus, Jacob here keeps bugging me about seeing you again.” – Billy Black, Twlight

2. “He’s right behind me, isn’t he?” (repeated line) – All of Gibbs’ team at some point, NCIS

3. “ Put the bunny back in the box.” – Cameron Poe, Con Air

4. “Here’s the Remains of the Day lunchbox. Kids don’t like eating at school, but if they have a Remains of the Day lunchbox they’re a lot happier.” – Corky St. Clair, Waiting for Guffman

5. “They say he sold his soul to the Devil. If he did, I don’t know what he did with the money.” – Krook, Bleak House

Chronicle

The movie Chronicle is filmed in documentary style, as if the story is captured mostly by the main character, Andrew, after he buys a camera and begins to carry it with him everywhere. New filming techniques are used better than in other documentary-style films, and the story is certainly intriguing.

Chronicle tells the story of Andrew, his cousin Matt, and  their fellow student Steve, who all venture into a cave and emerge with superpowers. What’s makes this movie different from most other superhero movies is that it shows the effect of superpowers on already hedonistic-tending teenagers.

It’s an interesting story, but also a bizarre one. Because of the style of filming, the characters and story didn’t seem that well developed. It’s not a movie I would care to sit down and watch repeatedly, but it is an interesting view of how power can twist an already fragile mind.

One for the Money

I was curious about watching One For The Money because I haven’t read the book by Janet Evanovich. Some adaptations seem to expect the viewers to have read the book, which can make the story unclear or fragmented.

Money is not one of those. It was an entertaining movie, and the viewer can easily root for the main character, Stephanie Plum, portrayed by Katherine Heigl. Plum is divorced and has lost her job, so she starts working for her cousin as a bounty hunter. She’s clueless at first, but gets a lot of help from a fellow bounty hunter called Ranger. He even teaches her how to shoot a gun.

The story is about Plum trying to get a big reward by bringing in a cop accused of murder. In the process, she tries to solve the case to her satisfaction, which (of course) lands her in hot water.

One for the Money is not a deep movie, but it is an entertaining and enjoyable one, even for those who haven’t read Evanovich’s books.