Movie Review: The Edge of Seventeen

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Directed by Kelly Fremon Craig / Released January 5, 2017 / Rated M / Length 1hour and 44 minutes / Comedy / Drama /

‘High-school life gets even more unbearable for Nadine when her best friend, Krista, starts dating her older brother’ – IMDb

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Public Warning / Movie Review – The 5th Wave

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Today I brought and watched The 5th Wave on DVD. If you don’t already know, I read the book version of this movie at the beginning of the year and loved it. You can find my review for it here. In the review you will find that I originally picked up the book simply because the movie was coming out and I wanted to watch it, so I brought the book and read it first and never did end up going to the movies to watch it. Fast forward 2 or 3 months and I have now finally watched the movie.

I don’t know how I feel about it. First of all it is very much in sync to the book, so you can’t complain about that people. Second of all and I think the most important part to know is that, there is a lot left out in the movie that I think is needed in the movie and it is not there. And thirdly the last thing I want to mention is that the ending is nothing like the book, although I understand why they have done that because there is another book and another movie coming and if it was done like the book it wouldn’t have made any sense at all.

In saying all of this I think that the most fundamentally wrong thing about the movie was that, I knew what was meant to happen and when it did happen it was done well and when it wasn’t done it felt like a big gapping whole was left in my chest. There are things that are left out like Cassie’s train of thought as to why she was doing what she was doing or her brother Sam’s terrible experience throughout the training camp which would have made the movie more interesting and lastly, I feel like the only reason I liked the movie was because I had read the book and could feel the gaps in by myself.

I watched this movie with my mother and she didn’t seem interested in it at all and I think it was because of the gaps and I had to keep filling them for her.

This doesn’t mean I won’t of course read the second book or watch the next movie, but it does mean I will write about it, because I can and also because people should know what to except from a killer book with an awkward sidekick of a movie.

I don’t know if this should be a movie review or a warning, but either way, you will like it whether or not you have read the book and because of that I am going to give this movie 2.9 movie stars out of 5.

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Movie Review: Z For Zachariah

Z For Zachariah / Released 2015 / Silver Reel / 1h 38 mins / Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Z_for_Zachariah_(film)

Margo Robbie, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Chris Pine star in a 3 person movie which is about a dystopian future where, from what I gathered contaminated water with radiation wiped out the people of the planet and only these 3 people plus a dog were lucky enough to survive, the two men being underground working at the time and the girl, well her divinely interested father lived in a valley that escaped the ruined waters, allowing her to survive off uncontaminated water.

Margo Robbie’s character Ann after losing her family who went in search for other survivors lives and works the lands around her for herself and her friendly dog. Having grown up on a farm with a preacher for a father, not only can she grow plenty of food and fend for herself, she also believes and prayers that things will get better. One day as she is on a hunt she comes across John (Ejiofor) and nurses him back to health before the two of them try to figure out how to survive winter without heat which is coming. As a scientist, John comes up with a few ideas to help the 3 of them survive and as they learn more about each other and spend every given moment together, he no doubly falls in love with her. But then Caleb (Pine) comes and messes everything up for John who has strong feelings for Ann. The 3 of them are stuck in a love triangle so unfortunate that none of them realise how much they all need each other. The ending was a little surprising I will admit.

I loved this movie for a number of reasons. One, there were only 3 people plus a dog in it. Two, the story was dystopian but the story wasn’t told like every other dystopian movie is telling their story. Three, the hurt and pain they all feel is real and aches. And fourth, I hate that John couldn’t see that if Caleb stayed that they could have properly repopulated the world.

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http://variety.com/2015/film/reviews/sundance-film-review-z-for-zachariah-1201413906/

Epic scenery, stunning acting, of course Chris Pine is amazing in it and the amount of faith and religion in the movie didn’t turn me away because it was beautifully balanced with a sense of humility that neither of them, the human and faith could survive without each other.

I don’t know why more people don’t know about this movie, it is fantastic. Yes, it is a little slow, but what happens in the movie is so touching and unreal that it has to be seen to believe. I think the work all 3 actors put into this movie should have been recognised with awards.

I give it 3.9 movie stars out of 5.

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Movie Review – The Choice

The Choice / Released 2016 / Nicholas Sparks Production / 1h 51mins / Drama, Romance

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Well it must be Valentine’s Day soon and not because shops are filled with overpriced chocolates and flowers, but because there is a brand new Nicholas Spark movie out. The Choice. What a great name, first of all. Secondly, it’s a book of his, so you know it is going to be a great movie. Thirdly, don’t knock it till you try it and last but not least, if you like/love any other Nicholas Sparks movies (e.g. The Notebook), then you are absolutely going to love this one undoubtedly.

The movie starts off in a hospital, so automatically thoughts are going to go to bad conclusions, but hang in there, because what you are going to get is one epic love story. Meet Travis (played by Benjamin Walker), a young vet who loves his dog, his boat and his family and friends. He is about of a ladies man, but knows what he wants in life and isn’t afraid to go after it. Then there is Gabby (played by Teresa Palmer), a medical student in the making, who has just moved next door to Travis to get away from her handsomely distracting boyfriend Ryan (Tom Welling (Superman)) who is also a doctor, to study. There are a few other familiar faces in the movie, but these three are the love triangle waiting to happen.

I’m not going to tell you what happens in the movie, I don’t want to spoil it. I want you to make up your own mind about the movie and come to your own conclusions. I will however tell you, yes there is a rain scene (famous in Nicholas Sparks movies), there is lots of great scenery, great moments with friends, a lot of heart to heart conversations and of course, an even to flip the whole movie on its head. Now if you have read the book like myself, then you will know what will happen and what the outcome will be, but I will implore you not to tell anyone what is going to happen, let them fall in love with the amazing writing of both Nicholas Sparks and the script writer Bryan Sipe.

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Corny, romantic, heart-warmingly fuzzy, sad, tear jerking, fun, exciting, humours, good southern charm – there are so many words that could be used to describe this movie, but there is only one that I am going to use to sum up this movie – EPIC.

I give it 4.8 movie stars out of 5.

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Movie Review: Me and Earl and The Dying Girl

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl / Released 2015 / Indian Paintbrush / 1h 45 mins / Comedy, Drama

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Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is a movie about a boy, his co-worker and a friendship they have between a girl who happens to be dying. I know right, the title of the movie states what is going to happen in the movie and it’s sad to say that not much else happens in the movie.

The original book written by Jesse Andrews who also happens to be the films screen writer is a hit with young adult novel readers and movie goers who enjoyed the movie The Fault in Our Stars both the book and movie by the infamous John Green. It is pretty much a given from the get go what is going to happen in the movie and I think that is pretty much the letdown of the movie, there is nothing surprising within the movie that would make a watcher sit back and say ‘maybe they should have called it something else’.

Set with a cast of new up and comers, aside from Connie Britton (Friday Night Lights) and Nick Offerman (Parks and Recreation), the three main characters are in any other world, just ordinary teenagers who happen to be in front of a camera screen. I’m not going to sit here and criticize the actors portrayal of the characters because I have never seen them in anything else and I don’t think that would be fair, but what I will say is that the three main character, bring real raw emotions to the screen that could bring a tear to the eye of the most cynical person.

For a movie about a girl dying and a boy trying to be her friend, I think that the story line which was a bit predictable and boring at some points could have done with something else. I didn’t really like this movie, I liked what the story was trying to say, but I didn’t like how the movie creators had gone about making it. Dull music and ordinary screen shots, I think more could have been done to make this story a knock out.

I give it 3.1 movie stars out of 5.

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Movie Review: SouthPaw

Directed by Antonie Fuqua / Released 2015 / The Weinstein Company / 119 minutes / Action, Drama, Sport

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I’m not a fan of sport themed movies, I just don’t get them. But Southpaw is something completely different. It’s not a sports movie because there is more to it than just sport, it’s not a drama filled movie even it is fills up a lot of it, and it is a tear jerker that makes the hardest of souls feel something. And I was definitely one of those who felt something for this movie.

After all the hype surrounding this movie, it was finally released on DVD and I was able to watch it. No one else wanted to watch it with me, so I went it alone and I am glad that I did, because I cried and all I wanted to do was hug Jake Gyllenhaal and tell him everything was going to be okay. I needed everything to be okay because so much happens in this movie, so many bad things happen in this movie that it is hard to believe that when something good finally does happen that it might get taken away again.

Jake Gyllenhaal plays Billy Hope an undefeated professional boxer, who at the height of his professional career finds his world coming down around him. First his wife, then his child and then his career, leaving him with nothing but the swollen eye that is shut that he wears for pretty much the entire movie.

It’s raw, it’s emotional, it’s volatile, and it’s everything that you want this movie to be. Beside the great boxing matches and the emotional scene played out between father and daughter, the intense and mind altering training sessions Billy goes under to get back into the game are fascinating to watch. I didn’t mind that Jake Gyllenhaal was pretty much shirtless for the entire movie, I think it not only shows the hard work the actor went through for the movie, but the level of commitment he had for the character he was asked to play.

If you looking for a great sports movie to watch, this isn’t the movie for you. Southpaw isn’t a sports movie, it is a spectacular drama and action movie that uses elements of professional boxing to highlight the ups and downs of life for the main character Billy Hope. It’s a movie that shouldn’t be missed.

I give it 4.5 movie stars out of 5.

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First Movie Review for 2016: We Are Your Friends

Directed and Written by Max Joseph / Released in 2015/ Studio Canal / 92 minutes / Drama

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What is better than Zac Efron shirtless and playing with music? Absolutely nothing. So when We Are Your Friends came out I knew I had to watch it for two reasons: one for Zac Efron and two for the music.

You don’t see a lot of movies that are entirely based on music. Sure there are musician biopic and so on, but this movie is different, it is new and innovative. Max Joseph the director and writer of this movie has taken dance music and DJing to the next level and has allowed it to tell its own story.

The movie is about dance music and how DJ’s make music, what inspires them and what the industry can really be like. Combined with struggles of life, friendship, partying and of course drug taking We Are Your Friends isn’t so much a coming of age movie or even a music movie, but more of a ‘if you’re stuck in a rut and need some inspiration’ type of movie.

There is a part in the movie which I loved more than the ending, which in itself was exceptional when you finally hear what everything has been building up to. It was when Zac Efron’s character Cole Carter is DJing at a party of his new found friend and as he is doing his thing, there is a voice over, his voice of course, telling the audience and the girl he is trying to impress (Emily Ratajkowski) what he is trying to do and he reasons behind doing so. I had no idea the level of knowledge and science behind the art of DJing, but when Cole starts talking about it, you can really start to connect with what he is saying whether or not you have gone out to a club and danced before.

I liked the humble beginning trait in all of the characters including Cole and his three friends, but I didn’t like or even appreciate the unexpected death thrown into the movie as I thought it brought a dark element to a movie that I didn’t think was trying to be dark. The unforeseen fallout of betrayal and temporary employment are elements in the movie that I thought were well played out.

Overall We Are Your Friends is a fresh new movie that can get the hearts of the laziest people pumping even if it just for the hour and a half the movie lasts. I think it is smart and the concept for the movie is well timed when all that is really around are the same sort of stories and movies being made. Kudos to Max Joseph for not being scared to think outside the box.

I give it 3.9 movie stars out of 5.

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Christmas Movie Review

Directed by Rachel Goldenberg / Released for Television in 2012 / 1.5 hours / Comedy, Drama, Romance

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We all love Christmas movies, and all that say that they don’t are lying. I love them and am so glad that for a few weeks up until the day of Christmas and the day of, there are Christmas movies on all the time on television. There was a movie on a few days ago that I watched with my sister and we both fell in love with it. It is called Love at the Christmas Table.

It was just what the doctor ordered, a heart fetchingly, cute movie that moved even the grouchiest of people, and I am definitely a Grinch at the moment.

The movie is based on a boy and a girl who sit at the children’s table as kids and become good friends. As they grow up and go through high school, puberty, university and work life, they always seem to make the time to go back to the girls house for Christmas Eve dinner, where once again, he and she sit at the children’s table, even as adults. They eat cake, play games, talk for hours and watch movies when not dancing, there are some of the best scenes.

As you watch the movie, you watch Sam and Kat, the boy and girl, fall in love with each other without either of them realising. Neither of them want to ruin what they have but struggle with the love lives they do have and talk about when they get back together at the children’s table for dinner on Christmas Eve, every single year.

Because they can’t make the movie 100% predictable, they throw in a few things that change up the pace and keep viewer on their toes, wondering if they will in fact get together in the end.

I won’t tell you how it end, I wouldn’t dare ruin the sanctity of Christmas movies, but I will say that the ending is just as thought out and real and honest as it can come. In an age where we all move so fast, it is nice to see girls and boys keeping up traditions and friendships even if they only see and talk to each other one time each year.

I give it 4 movie stars out of 5.

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Movie Review: A Royal Night Out

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Directed by Julian Jarrold /Released 2015 / Rated PG-13 / 1h 37 minuted / Drama/Romance

A Royal Night Out is not a biographical movie, it is not a retelling of a certain event, it is in fact a made up story about real people, with the hope and presumption that the events that partake within the movie might have or could have taken place.

The movie is set in 1945, more specifically V.E. day which was the 8th May 1945. The movie doesn’t follow the events of what happened that night or what lead up to that particular night, it instead follows the story of the now Queen Elizabeth who at the time was 19 and her sister Princess Margaret who at the time was 14, leaving the Palace for the night and going ‘incognito’ into the crowds to celebrate.

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(These are the two actor who play Princess Margaret and Princess Elizabeth, in that order).

It is your classic drama meets romance type of movie, except that it is already well known that the men both of the Princess’ meet and spend the night with do not turn into their future husbands (which is a bit of a letdown on Princess Elizabeth’s part). As they set off for a once in a life time experience the two sisters get separated and the fun beings. Dancing, call girls, Trafalgar Square, Soho, gambling, the mob and drinking alcohol are just some of the many different places and things that are seen and done throughout the short hour and a half movie that by the time it finishes you wonder how on earth how two girls who have never even run a bath for themselves had done so much in so little time.

As romance movies stipulate, a knight in shining armour has to come to the rescue and it sort of happens in this movie when an air force piolet is out and about for the night seems to keep running into Lizzy or Lilibet as her family likes to call her and has to helps her find her sister. The two girls are thrown into a world that they never knew existed and by the time Princess 1 finds Princess 2 as they refer to each other, they head on home, calling it a night.

But before the movie can end, Princess Elizabeth with every manner and responsibility she had been taught to have and use, cannot help herself but save the young man that helped save her and find her sister. Thus warranting the romantic part.

It’s a made up story ‘apparently’, but as I watched this movie, I couldn’t help but think ‘what would have happened if she had gotten with this boy instead of Phillip?’ and if it was really truly the one and only time she and her sister got to go out on their own.

It’s cute, it’s funny, the accents are adorable and the plot line and dialogue work well together. If you like olden day music or the royals or even just a great movie, this is the one for you.

I give it 4 movie stars out of 5.

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