• Ready Player One
    Ready Player One
    by Ernest Cline

    Seriuosly, one of the coolest books I've read in a LONG time.  If you are a geek that grew up in the 80s, you gotta read this book.

  • Okay for Now
    Okay for Now
    by Gary D. Schmidt

    This was gift from a dear friend.  Although it is a children's book, it was fun to read.

Entries in movies (5)


Boom Boom Pow!

WARNING: May or may not contain spoilers! You have been warned!

Another twofer this week!

Cowboys & Aliens

I wasn’t sure about this one. I know comic book movies are all the rage, but the only thing this movie shares with the comic is the title.  Besides, Daniel Craig as a cowboy? Really? Harrison Ford is old, Olive Wilde is… I don’t know.  I just didn’t have high hopes for this one.  Thankfully, I was pleasantly surprised.

If I had to describe the movie, I would call it a Western that just happens to have Aliens.  It doesn’t try to be more than it was meant to be (unlike ‘Skyline’).  Most of the actors do a decent job playing Cowboys and Indians Aliens.  Daniel Craig does a decent job of hiding his accent and Harrison Ford has got the old grizzled and haggard cowboy look down… oh wait, it’s not a look. He is old, grizzled and haggard.  Olivia Wilde is ok, she doesn’t do much acting and the whole “nude” scene was kinda worthless and unnecessary. 

I don’t want to delve too much into the movie.  It is fun, not overly long and definitely not over the top.  The Cowboys use guns, the Indians use bow & arrows, and the aliens use ray guns. Bad guys die, good guys die, and the townsfolk are saved.

Overall rating:  Matinée/DVD Rental – Take your pick.  It’s a fun movie that focus on story rather than special effects.

Captain America

To date, there have been 33 movies based on Marvel properties. Captain America is #34 and they have come a looooong way since #1.  There have been victories (Iron Man) and defeats (Howard the Duck) but I believe that with each new movie, they learn from their mistakes. 

Captain America, by itself, is a good movie. The biggest compliant I would have is that there is not enough action.  There seemed to be soooo much character building and background development.  However, if you look at it as what it is supposed to be, then you get the bigger picture.  There is a reason it is called Captain America: The First Avenger. Unless you’ve been living under a rock the past few years, you know that The Avengers is being released next summer.  Hulk, Iron Man, Thor and Captain America are all preludes leading up to The Avengers. Based on that, Captain America makes for a very good movie.

There are a few of easter eggs in the movie. Some obvious, some not so much. Look for Bucky Barnes along with Dum Dum Dugan and the Howling Commandos. Phineas Horton's original Human Torch is at the World's Fair. A classic comic book cover is seen during the USO tour with Cap delivering the knock out punch to the Fuhrer. Oh, and speaking about the Fuhrer, there is a reference to Raiders of the Lost Ark. It's subtle, but it's there.

Overall rating: Full Price/Matinée – Again, take your pick. The amount of detail scene on the costumes and in the sets must be appreciated on the big screen.

Rise of the Planet of the Apes review should be up in a couple of days.





Disney Done Did Dat Already.

WARNING: May or may not contain spoilers! You have been warned!

The Zookeeper

My niece calls me up and tells me she wants to see the movie The Zookeeper.  Not a movie I particularly wanted to see on the big screen but I have a deal with her* so we go.  Kevin James (KJ)  is a fine comedic actor. He’s not one of my favorites, but he’s not on the bottom of my list either.  Can he carry this movie? Sure, as long as you aren’t expecting much.  It’s your typical “boy gets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl only to realize he’s not in love with her but in love with his co-worker who’s been in love with him for years” rom-com.  Actually, just drop the rom, it’s a simple com.  One thing you need to realize, this is an Adam Sandler movie.  It has his signature all over it.  Not that it’s a bad thing. Billy Madison and Happy Gilmore are two of my favorite movies.  The problem is that everything in this movie has been done before, except this time you have talking animals.  Some scenes are very painful to watch (KJ and the blue chair, KJ and the frog stance, KJ in any scene without an animal or Rosario Dawson) while other really had me rolling (KJ and the Gorilla at TGIFriday’s).  Adam Sandler as the monkey was bit irritating about 10 minutes after he starts talking.  I kept expecting the Lion to yell “Yo, Adrian” and the Lioness to start singing a medley of hits (I Got You Babe, Half-Breed, If I Could Turn Back Time…).

The plot is very predictable and you see the ending coming a mile away (boy chase true love who is on her way to the airport).  Thankfully, the movie isn’t that long and is over before it caused an aneurism. 

Overall rating:  Wait for the Network Broadcast. It has its moments, but not enough of them to justify any type of viewing.

Well, I liked it.

Obviously there is no accounting for taste.

What's that supposed to mean.

Can you imagine what would happen if I let ou write these reveiws? I would lose my credibility. 

What you talking 'bout, Willis?

You thought The Fountain was the greatest movie ever made!

It was!

And you thought that Star Wars was, and I quote, "re-hashed, centuries old mythology regurgitated for the ADHD masses with no respect to the source material."

Yeeeeeahhh... I will never confirm nor deny that a possible error might have been accidentally made.  Until you integrate instant replay in these movie reviews, these movie reviews will never be 100% accurate.


Yeah, we want instant replay put into our next collective bargaining agreement.

What?!?!?! That's it, no more watching ESPN for you.  You want a CBA? Really? Seriously?  And who's this "we"?

What? You didn't think I was here by myself, did you?  Let me introduce you to Hidari.


Oh, I so don't need this right now.


*- Once a month, I take my nephews and nieces to a movie of their choice followed by some quality time hanging out.  Next month she wants to go see The Smurfs. Oh, will the pain never end!



In the beginning...

WARNING: May or may not contain spoilers!  You have been warned!

X-Men: First Class

Ever since the ending credits of “X-Men: Last Stand” I’ve been waiting for the X-Men’s return to glory.  Let’s face it, XM:LS was dismal, half-hearted, over-budgeted, lame attempt of reconciling at least three different storylines into one misshapen chimera that was blissfully short.

Really? Why don’t you tell us how you really feel?

I figured that with three more X movies on the horizon there was at least a 33% chance of a decent movie and return to glory.  Then came the Wolverine movie.  And they blew it again! Seriously guys, you don’t need to cram 30+ years of comic history into one movie.  Leave some for the sequel.  Anyway, let’s leave that one alone for minute.

Yes, please.  Don’t get him started on Wolverine!

X-Men Origins. If you can rise above certain errors and continuity issues, the movie is great.  McAvoy and Fassbender do an excellent job in portraying the tumultuous friendship between the Prof and Magneto.  The members of the First Class really give you a feeling of nervousness, excitement and awe of going to a new school and being part of something special.  Members of the Brotherhood… well, they really aren’t used enough to get emotionally attached to them.  Well, except for Kevin Bacon’s Sebastian Shaw.  Absolutely the character you love to hate.  They really need to use him again.

There are a couple of cool cameos (watch it, bub!) and one that didn’t happen (where’s the Man?) and a pretty strong and tight story.  I love how they used an actual historical backdrop and actual footage from the times.  Loved the fashion of the 60s (mini-skirts everywhere) and the costumes (blue and gold, yeah!).  There are a couple of disappointments (why Darwin? Rather it would have happened to Angel) and nods to the fans (Blackbird – coolest airplane of all time). They also lay the groundwork for the future (Azazel + Mystique =…).  Oh, and don’t even get me started on Emma Frost (eye popping wow!) Look for a follow-up post with more of a breakdown.

One more thing.  All the CG effects… can’t really tell they are CG.  Nothing looks fake.  Excellent, excellent job.

Bottom line: This is like the first X-Men movie all over again.  Solid groundwork has been laid for a secure foundation of future movies.  Hopefully they don’t blow on the third movie.

Overall rating:  Full-Price Movie. ‘Nuff Said!  


Ska-doosh mateys!

Sorry I didn’t post anything last week. It was a crazy week.  To make up for it, I’m posting a twofer.

WARNING: May or may not contain spoilers!  You have been warned!

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.

Gonna be totally honest here: I did not like Pirates of the Caribbean (PotC) Dead Man’s Chest or At World’s End.  Ok, let me correct that. I did like those two movie, until I saw them a second time.  I realized then that it wasn’t all that I thought it was the first time around… Kinda like watching Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, but that’s a rant for another day.

I went in to see PotC: OST expecting a lot of Jack Sparrow (there’s a captain in there somewhere) shenanigans and silliness.  Well, it does have that and a fun and somewhat engaging plot.  Absolutely loved Jack Sparrow, although a little more silliness would have been nice.  Penelope Cruz is beautiful, and she does a nice job of playing a pirate.  Ian McShane as Blackbeard… I would have loved to see more of him.  Loved him in “Kings” and “Deadwood” and he seems like such a refined actor… Anyway.

The movie is fun to watch.  The pacing does get a bit off a couple of time but it continues to move forward.  They did leave a gaping plot hole (Where’s Phillip?), or maybe an opening for a 5th film?  There is the obligatory post-credits scene.  Doesn’t really add anything to the movie, but it is cute.  There are no major SFX scenes like in previous movies (the massive Kraken) so there really is no need to see this on the big screen.  It is fun to watch (did I say that already?).

Overall rating:  DVD rental. If you can’t wait, catch a matinee.

Kung Fu Panda 2

When I saw Kung Fu Panda (KFP) for the first time, it was on DVD and not in the theater.  At the end of the movie I was so upset. Why did I wait so long to see such a funny movie?  When I heard there was a sequel I vowed not to wait to see it.  Not only did I see it opening night, I saw it again on Monday for good measure.  When you go see this movie, make sure you are sitting next to a little person under the age of 13.  I could not stop laughing at this movie and hearing the laughter of the little person next to me made that much more enjoyable. 

The quality of animation is equal to or superior to that of KFP. The voices… what an All-Star cast and some surprises (JCVD anyone?).  What I loved the most was the character of Shen.  Not only was he the most amazing animated creature in the entire film, he is voiced by Gary Oldman.  Gary Oldman!  That dude is the coolest bad guy this side of the Galactic Empire.  The only odd thing about the voices is that I kept see the State Farm logo every time a certain character would speak (bonus points if you can name the character and voice actor).  It’s kinda like watching The Lion King and trying not to say “Simba, I am your father” after Mufasa’s lines.

They did a great job explaining how a goose became the father of a panda. They also left open for a sequel.  The only thing I wish is that other of the Furious Five, aside from Tigress, had a bit more to say or do.

Overall rating: Matinee movie.  Make sure you go with a bunch of kids.

Well, that’s it for today.  I got a lot more to say, but I’ll leave that for another day.





Danny, this review's for you...

 (Warning: May contain spoilers)

So I saw two movies this weekend.  That is kinda rare.  I usually try to limit myself to 1 movie a weekend.  However, I did miss the premiere weekend of Fast Five last week so I had to make up for it.

Fast Five

Let’s be honest, The Fast and the Furious (F&F) was about cars, women, and music.  There was very little plot involved. As new F&F movies appeared, a serious attempt was made to develop an actual plot.  I’d say they succeeded quite admirably.  F&F5 does a real good job on character development, compared to the last films.  It really isn’t about the cars this time around, especially when the ‘star’ car is a Dodge Charger.

All the actors/characters are just like you expect.  Tego and Don really steal the scenes they are in.  It helps if you know Spanish.  I’m still trying to understand how Han got back in this movie.  I thought he died in F&F3.  I know F&F4 took place around the same time as F&F3 but you can’t tell me F&F5 takes place around the same time.  The only I can think of is that he pulls a “Letty” (Stay after the credits to get my meaning).

Overall rating: Matinee Movie. Decent movie. However, you can wait for $1 theater or DVD rental.


I was a little worried when I went to see Thor. I was worried that there was going to be a lot of Norse talk with the “thine”, “thou”, “whilst”, and other crazy word being thrown about by the Asgardians. Thankfully we are spared all that crazy talk.  What we do have is a really good comic book movie.  The Asgardians look like they were pulled from the comic book, yet they don’t look ridiculous.  My only beefs are Heimdall should have been… I don’t know… bigger? More imposing? And Volstagg definitely should have been bigger. But in a way I’m glad they didn’t do that ‘cause it would have required a lot of CGI and I do think that CGI is WAY over done nowadays.

The entire movie is a setup for The Avengers movie. S.H.I.E.L.D. is all over this movie, Barton makes an appearance, the Bruce Banner/Hulk reference…  If I didn’t know there was going to be an Avengers movie, there would be no doubt about it now.  Chris Hemsworth is awesome as Thor, but I absolutely loved Tom Hiddleston as Loki.  I really hope they use him in more movies.*

Anyway, I could go on and on about this movie but rather than that let me give you my…

Overall rating:  Full-Price Movie. It doesn’t disappoint and you have to see it on the big screen to really appreciate Asgard.

That’s all for…

That’s it?

Umm, yeah. I don’t have time for anything else right now.

You know, they could’ve gone anywhere for a movie review.

I know. I want to write more, but I don’t have time “write” now.  Get it? “Write” now?

Yeah, I got it, Not that funny.  I’m telling you, let me write something. I can…




*Well, if you stay for after the credits, I guess they will be using Loki in upcoming movies. Awesome.