Monday, April 30, 2007

Summer Blockbusters

No doubt about it, these are the summer's most anticipated films. Check it out for yourself:

Click on the titles to see the trailer.

- Spider-man 3. In the last installment of the Spider-man trilogy (there could be more but let's hope not), Peter Parker must battle his own demons, his ex-best friend, the real killer who murdered Peter's uncle, and an evil photographer. Starring Tobey Maguire as Spidey, Kirsten Dunst as M.J., and James Franco as Harry. I most look forward to: Franco's performance. IMDb

- Pirates of the Caribbean 3. Captain Jack is back from the dead, Elizabeth is torn between the two men she loves, and Will wants to marry Elizabeth. The East India Trading Company wants to exterminate pirates once and for all; and with the help of Davy Jones and a tentacled leviathan, they just might succeed. All the pirates of the world must band together under Jack Sparrow to fight back. Starring Johnny Depp, Keira Knightley, Orlando Bloom, and Chow Yung Fat. I most look forward to: Jack's return. IMDb

-Ocean's 13. Danny Ocean and his crew are back, but now they're adding another partner- their former enemy, Terry Benedict. This time the target is a casino owned by Willy Bank (What a name), and this time the odds are higher than ever. Starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Andy Garcia, Al Pacino, and Ellen Barkin. I most look forward to: Matt and Brad. IMDb

-Live Free or Die Hard. Maybe you thought John McClane's adventures were over? Think again. McClane is back, Die Hard is modernized: he's got a sidekick and he's fighting terrorists. What more could you need? Starring Bruce Willis and Justin Long. I most look forward to: Willis' famous "Yippykayay" line. IMDb

-Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Harry, Ron, and Hermione are back. This time, the battle might actually kill them. Harry will find out the truth about who he is, Voldemort will return, Draco will whine a lot, Dumbledore will kick some serious butt, and Hogwarts will be taken over by an evil frog-woman. Starring Dan Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and Ralph Fiennes. I most look forward to: Helena Bonham Carter as Bellatrix Lestrange. IMDb

-The Bourne Ultimatum. Jason Bourne is back. With no past and no identity, Bourne is a little pissed off. Everyone wants to kill him, his girlfriend has been murdered, and someone seriously messed with his life. He's out to find out the truth and he'll kill anyone who gets in his way. Starring Matt Damon, Julia Stiles, and Joan Allen. I most look forward to: Damon's performance. IMDb

Also: Transformers, Fantastic 4, Evan Almighty, Next, Vacancy

Sunday, April 29, 2007

The Unmissables Vol. III

These are Unmissables numbers 21 through 30. Enjoy!

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
When the earth is destroyed, one man embarks on a journey that will take him far beyond his wildest dreams, not to mention his galaxy. He meets the president of the universe, a
depressed robot, and the love of his life along the way. If you like and understand British
humor (ie. Monty Python), Hitchhiker's Guide is a must.
Martin Freeman, Zooey Deschanel, Mos Def, and Sam Rockwell
Don't Panic

Rat Race
Nine people are chosen at random to race across the country where two million dollars awaits the first to cross the finish line. Rat Race is hands down one of the funniest movies you will ever see as the incidents that occur along the way become more and more full of unbelievable hilarity.
John Cleese, Whoopie Goldburg, Seth Green, Rowan Atkinson, Amy Smart, Brekin Meyer, Cuba Gooding Jr., and Jon Lovitz
563 miles. 9 people. $2 million. 1001 problems!

The Sixth Sense
In M. Night Shyalmalan's masterpiece thriller, a psychologist must help a little boy, Cole, who believes he can see dead people. The ghosts don't know they're dead, but Cole must find out why they haunt him. Excellent, filled with suspense and intrigue.
Haley Joel Osment, Bruce Willis, and Toni Collette
Not every gift is a blessing

At 41,000 feet, the two pilots and the navigator are dead, and the passengers are falling ill as well. It seems as though the only ones who can save the dayare an ex-pilot who hasn't flown since the war, a stewardess, and a wacky doctor. Despite its apparent seriousness, Airplane! is a
comedy that willleave you rolling on the floor laughing.
Robert Hays, Leslie Nielson, and Julie Hagerty
What's slower than a speeding bullet, and able to hit tall buildings at a single bound?

Blades of Glory
After being banned from Men's Singles Ice Skating for life, Chazz Michael Michaels and Jimmy MacElroy must work together to be the first mens team in the history of Pairs Ice Skating. It won't be easy, since Chazz and Jimmy are polar opposites. This is Napolean Dynamite meets Talladega Nights. On ice.
Will Ferrell and Jon Heder
Kick some ice

The Persians are hell-bent on ruling all of Greece, only Sparta stands in their way of complete domination. King Leonides and only 300 faithful soldiers stand up to the Persian army, numbering more than one million. Based on Frank Miller's graphic novel, 300 is a gory, stunning, and stylized Unmissable.
Gerard Butler and Lena Heady
Prepare for glory

Sin City
In the city of sin, trouble is brewing. A serial killer is on the loose, the fragile peace between the prostitutes and the police is about to be broken, and the only heroes are the worst of criminals. Sin City is based on Frank Miller's graphic novel and is a stylized portrayal of true justice, honor, and loyalty.
Bruce Willis, Jessica Alba, Clive Owen, Elijah Wood, Anthony Hopkins, Alexis Bledel, Rosario Dawson, Benicio Del Toro, Brittany Murphy, and Mickey Rourke
There is no justice without sin.

Sleepy Hollow
In the town of Sleepy Hollow, a monster has awoken: The Headless Horseman rides again, claiming the heads of those involved in a secret conspiracy. Inspector Ichabod Crane is sent to investigate, but he must uncover the truth before the Horseman comes for him. One the best Tim Burton/Johnny Depp collaborations, full of thrills, chills, and plenty of morbid humor.
Johnny Depp, Christina Ricci, and Christopher Walken
Heads will roll.

What's Eating Gilbert Grape
In the sleepy town of Endora, nothing much happens, especially for Gilbert Grape, who must care for his obese mother and handicapped brother after his father's death. When he meets Becky, everything changes and he begins to see that life can be beautiful.
Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Juliette Lewis
Living in Endora is like dancing to no music.

Top Gun
Maverick is a student at Top Gun, the best flight school in the nation. He is determined to live down his father's reputation and make a name for himself as the best pilot in Top Gun history. But he won't get there without a little help from his friends.Dramatic and funny.
Tom Cruise and Kelly McGillis
I feel the need, the need for speed.

Out of these last ten, I would especially recommend Sin City or Rat Race- completely opposite films, but superbly done. Second choices would be Sleepy Hollow and The Sixth Sense. (Or 300 if you're okay with gore.)

The Unmissables Vol. II

This is Vol. II, numbers 11-20, of the 100 movies you can't miss and must see.

The story of how a man became a legend and how the Scottish people fought back against tyranny.
Mel Gibson

Lord of the Rings, the Trilogy
Join Frodo, Aragorn, and their friends as they embark upon an epic adventure to fight for good and destroy evil forever. Based upon the beloved masterpiece by J.R.R. Tolkein.
Elijah Wood, Viggo Mortenson, Hugo Weaving, Liv Tyler, and Ian McKellen

A Beautiful Mind
A mathematician, possibly the most brilliant in the country, finds himself at odds with his own mind. Will he overcome, or will madness consume him?
Russell Crowe and Jennifer Connelly

Last Samurai
When American military captain Nathan Algren is recruited to train the Japanese army to fight against the uprising Samurai, he never could have dreamed that it was his destiny to become one of them.
Tom Cruise and Ken Watanabe

Garden State
A young man returns to his hometown for his mother's funeral. He must come to terms with his father, whom he hasn't spoken to in ten years. When he meets a girl named Sam, he may just realize that life is worth the living.
Zach Braff and Natalie Portman

This heartwrenching tragedy is seen through the eyes of Jack and Rose, two passengers on the great oceanliner, Titanic. They find themselves madly in love with each other although their social status forbids such union. Will love triumph?
Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet

When a woman and her daughter come to town to open a chocolate shop, the townspeople find that such sinful temptation will teach them about love, acceptance, and forgiveness.
Juliette Binoche, Alfred Molina, and Johnny Depp

War of the Worlds
Aliens are attacking the earth, and it's one man's mission to keep he and his family both alive and together.
Tom Cruise, Dakota Fanning, and Justin Chatwin

Pay It Forward
A class assignment to better the world becomes a nation-wide movement. One boy decided to change someone's life for the better and instead of asking for a favor in return, he asked that the favor be passed forward.
Haley Joel Osment, Kevin Spacey, Helen Hunt, and Jim Caviezel

Ethan Hunt, a top spy for his agency, finds himself under suspicion of being a mole. Hunt must discover the true mole before it's too late- without his agency's help.
Tom Cruise, Ving Rhames, and Jon Voight

Recommendations: Titanic, Braveheart, and A Beautiful Mind

The Unmissables Vol I

1-10 of the 100 movies you MUST see in your lifetime. According to me.

Boondock Saints
Two brothers are determined to rid Boston of its worst criminals, but they must avoid the FBI agent hot on their trail. Funny, dramatic, and very, very badass.
Sean Patrick Flannery, Norman Reedus, and Willem DaFoe.

V for Vendetta
The hero is a terrorist named V who fights for freedom in a Guy Fawkes mask. The heroine is a girl who finds out what the creature behind the mask really is. Man or monster? Excellent, exceedingly well-acted by Weaving, very political.
Natalie Portman, Hugo Weaving, and Stephen Rea

Forrest Gump
Forrest tells the story of America through his eyes; from JFK to Elvis to Vietnam. All the while he is searching for his one true love, Jenny.
Tom Hanks, Robin Wright Penn, and Gary Sinise

The Notebook
The story of two young lovers, separated by time. The story is read to an old woman by an old man in a nursing home. Dramatic and romantic.
Ryan Gosling, Rachel McAdams, and James Garner

Once Upon a Time in Mexico
El Mariachi, his two partners, a corrupt government, an errant CIA agent, and one too many lovers. Not to mention blackmail and betrayal. Love hurts. But revenge is sweet.
Johnny Depp, Antonia Banderas, and Salma Hayek

A Roman general is betrayed by a emperor, his family brutally murdered. He returns as a gladiator to seek revenge, defying emperor and empire.
Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, and Connie Nielson

Everyone, including ruthless hitmen, bumbling burglers, bare-knuckle boxers, crooked collectors, and sly gypies, are racing to possess a diamond worth millions. The confusion makes for one of the most hilarious movies in the comedy genre.
Jason Statham, Brad Pitt, and Stephen Graham

Time is running out as a Texas-sized meteor heads for earth. The world depends on a team of deep-core drillers who must nuke the meteor from the inside.
Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thorton, Liv Tyler, and Ben Affleck

Orange County
When his dreams of going to Stanford are shattered, Shaun Brumder sets out to put those dreams back together with the help of his brother and girlfriend. Hilarity ensues.
Colin Hanks and Jack Black

The Fifth Element
Far into the future, a corrupt bussinessman, Mr. Zorg, wants to destroy Earth. It's up to a former military man, a clueless priest, a warrior princess, and a clueless talk show host to save the day in the funniest action movie you'll ever see.
Bruce Willis, Mila Jovovich, Chris Tucker, and Gary Oldman

The movies above all deserve at least four out of five stars. Superb acting, real plots, excellent storylines, comedy, drama, romance, and action. Stay tuned for the next ten!

Special Recommendations: Boondock Saints, Snatch, and Forrest Gump (And the Notebook.)


Wind speed, humidity, temperature, location, “even the rotation of the earth” are all important. No, this isn’t the weather channel, this is Shooter, an action film starring Mark Wahlburg, Michael Pena, and Danny Glover. Filled with eye-popping explosions, car chases, and gun fights, Shooter is a movie with a message: any problem you have, no matter how big or how small, can be solved with a really big gun.

Mark Wahlburg is Bob Lee Swagger, an ex-Special Operative who happens to be one of only a few snipers in the world who are capable of hitting a mark from over a mile away. When the government comes knocking on his door, asking him to foil a sniper’s plot to assassinate the president, Swagger is unknowingly framing himself. Realization hits and Swagger is off, running from the government he trusts, accused of a crime he tried to stop. The pressure mounts, a girl enters the picture, and so do lots of bad guys. Again and again Swagger proves the movie’s message right. Guns are the answer. Always.

Luckily, Shooter has a pretty good plot, excellent special effects, and superb acting to make it on the whole a good movie. When you think you have everything figured out, you’re probably wrong. Make a special trip to see this film because it’s definitely worth it.


"The Prestige" will dazzle you. It will show you the impossible and you'll love it. It will impress you. It will flabbergast you. You will sit in the theater after having seen it and try to figure out what you just saw. You will want to run back to the ticket booth and buy another ticket to watch it again. You will want to watch it again, to catch it. One question will haunt you. Was it magic?

"Prestige" is certainly movie magic, there is no doubt about that. After having waited in anticipation for many months for "Prestige", I was pleased to have it exceed my expectations. Starring Christian Bale ("Batman"), Hugh Jackman (Wolverine from "X-Men"), Scarlett Johansson (The Island), Rebecca Hall, and Michael Caine (Secondhand Lions, Alfred from "Batman"), "Prestige" is certainly filled with prestigious people. The cast also include Piper Perabo, Andy Serkis (Gollum), and David Bowie.

Chris Bale and Jackman play two magicians who begin as friends, but the friendship turns to obsessive rivalry when tragedy strikes. Bale is obviously the better magician, but Jackman has flair. When Bale performs "the greatest magic trick he's ever seen", Jackman decides to get even and the make a name for himself at the same time. Their hatred for each other puts Bale's wife and child and Scarlett Johansson in the middle of it all. The danger increases and the intensity rises as the men make attempt after attempt to outwit the other.

Chris Bale and Michael Caine had the most impressive acting, and I loved every minute they were on camera. That's not to say that Johansson and Jackman aren't great too. Surprisingly, Bowie gives a pretty good performance, not at all reminiscient of "The Labyrinth", which is a relief.

According to Caine's character, "Every great magic trick consists of three acts. The first act is called "The Pledge"; The magician shows you something ordinary, but of course... it probably isn't. The second act is called "The Turn"; The magician makes his ordinary some thing do something extraordinary. Now if you're looking for the secret... you won't find it, that's why there's a third act called, "The Prestige"; this is the part with the twists and turns, where lives hang in the balance, and you see something shocking you've never seen before."

The magician of this movie is the director, and the actors who make his film come alive. When you see "The Prestige", you will see something shocking you've never seen before. You will look for the secret, but you won't find it. Because of course, you're not really looking. You don't really want to know. Interestingly enough, movies, just like illusions, consist of three acts. "The Prestige" converts a film into a magic trick. If you think you have it all figured out, think again. Because the only parts you've seen are the Pledge and the Turn. The Prestige is still to come.


Find out which films to absolutely skip and which you can't miss. THese are my opinions on current films and timeless classics