Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Rise of the Guardians (2012)

I was completely astounded by how much I liked this movie. I watched it because that was what was playing at the time I went to the movie theater, and I found myself completely swept up in the story, despite the fact that every other "mythological characters are real" children's movie I could think of is horrific. This one manages to tell a very moving story and SOMEHOW even makes the "children have stopped believing!" trope seem less tired. 4 stars.

Flickchart: #395, below The Dictator and above Dark Shadows.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Anchors Aweigh (1945)

Hey, it's On the Town, except without that third guy nobody remembers! And, well, without Leonard Bernstein songs, so they're not as good. Despite that, the story is a lot of fun, if pretty conventional, and it does have a couple *fantastic* dance sequences. I'll take Gene Kelly any day over any other famous dancer. Even dances as gimmicky as his dance with Jerry are wonderful to watch, when I would be uninterested if anyone else did it. The movie's worth watching for his dancing alone. Skip any songs where dancing isn't happening. 2 stars.

Flickchart: #1189, below What's Up, Tiger Lily? and above X-Men.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Army of Darkness (1992)

This movie goes even one step further than Evil Dead 2, which is a campy horror movie, and decides to be pretty much pure comedy. From the goofy premise to ridiculous one-liners to hilariously random plot twists to basic slapstick gags, this movie is just *silly*. There's virtually none of the gross-out factor like in the first movie. I would highly recommend this to people who like campy action flicks, because it just doesn't get campier than this one. 4 stars.

Flickchart: #441, below Spellbound and above The Hustler

Evil Dead II (1987)

OK, so I really hated the first Evil Dead movie. Although I am not *that* easy to squick out, most of the shocking gore moments in it were just too much for me (could not handle the creatures oozing milk... *shudder*). On top of that, it took itself far too seriously, and not even in a very entertainingly bad fashion. This one remedies both those issues in one go - cutting back on the over-the-top gore and going a little lighter on the story makes for something that is so much more fun than I thought it would be. It's a completely different movie from the first one, and a much, much better one. 3.5 stars.

Flickchart: #691, below Fantasia 2000 and above The Good, The Bad and the Ugly.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Independence Day (1996)

I have to admit, I only half-watched this... but this was a really easy movie to only half-watch. Nothing of true significance really happened in most of it, and whenever it did, it drew a whole lot of attention to it. Will Smith's character was fun (I especially liked the scene where he is crankily dragging the alien through the desert) but I could have happily done without Jeff Goldblum's conspiracy theory romance sideplot. In the end, there's really no reason I'd watch this again, but it was fine. 2 stars.

Flickchart: #1413, below The Italian Job and above Mr. and Mrs. Smith.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Trainspotting (1996)

Note: The remaining November entries do not have "Best Part/Worst Part" sections because I was without a computer for a month and am just now catching up on all my reviews, and I knew if I tried to figure out anything beyond just the mini-review itself, I'd just never get anything written. :-)

Danny Boyle's directing continues to astound me. He tells this story with wonderful visual style, hitting just the right comedic moments and emphasizing all the right dramatic ones. The story itself kind of goes around and around in circles, and I think if most directors had made this it would have not set quite right with me. Overall, I continue to be impressed with Boyle in just about everything he's done. He's tackled quite a wide variety of topics and genres now... 4 stars.

Flickchart: #384, below Borat and above 12 Monkeys, which is still way too high on my list.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

21 Jump Street (2012)

This movie was so much funnier than I expected it to be. I expected it to be raunchier humor and significantly less clever, but it turned out to be extremely entertaining. Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill look like they're having a blast in these roles, and the movie clearly is just out to have fun itself. If ever there was a clear "popcorn movie," this is it. Not brilliant, but a great ride and worth seeing. 3 stars.

Best Part: Original 21 Jump Street cast cameos!
Worst Part: The scene at the very end where the bad guy's penis literally gets shot off. Nope. Not funny.
Flickchart: #676, below The Secret of Santa Vittoria and above Rushmore.