Review : American Made

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“A pilot lands work for the CIA and as a drug runner in the south during the 1980s.”

This is one of those movies, where at best, its a Wolf of Wall Street, and at worst they just come off as unauthentic, cheesy, and boring. This movie is pretty much in the middle. It stats Tom Cruise, who as always, is totally committed to his role and plays it very well, the movie on a whole however, is what maybe holds it all back. Its not to say that this movie isn’t good, or isn’t entertaining. Its certainly funny enough, dramatic enough, the acting is good enough, its all enough yes, but the real issue is that its just enough. Nothing here is special, nothing here takes this movie into a category above, where movies like the Wold of Wall Street live. It gets kind of bogged down in mediocrity that make it great probably for an at home stream, but nothing about it says come see me in the cinema. Also, a lot happens here, and it all needs to happen, but it can almost feel a bit overwhelming sometimes, as the movie often needs to keep up a bit of a break neck pace to get from where the story starts, to where the movie ends it. All in all though, this movie is two things combined. Its Tom Cruise being the consummate professional he always is (the man is never bad EVER), mixed with a rest of movie thats good but not great, and I feel like with this story and talent, it could have been GREAT.

Review Score : 7.5 out of 10

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Review : Baby Driver

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“After being coerced into working for a crime boss, a young getaway driver finds himself taking part in a heist doomed to fail.”

I know this review is late…sorry. That aside, what a wonderful movie. The long awaited return of Edgar Wright is here, and he really knocks this one out of the park. Baby Driver takes us the audience on a full throttle, action packed, tension filled, high energy, but full of fun ride, that starts of hot and sweaty and stays that way till the bitter sweet ending. This movie really does check all the boxes. It has a great sound track, wonderfully done and shot action, amazing driving, and best of all, some really well brought to life characters that were all equal parts crazy, as funny, and dangerous. These characters are more than just caricatures also, as much as they are over the top and intense in their personalities, they also a reigned in just tight enough to fit perfectly into the narrative and only add to the furthering plot. The plot itself is also really tight, and it keeps itself moving at a nice pace, that ramps up and down as the film needs. The entire caste here also from Ansel Elgort, Jamie Foxx, Jon Bernthal, Jon Hamm, Lily James and Kevin Spacey, all do so well to make their characters really feel well rounded and lived in, that as i mentioned before, their sometimes over the top personalities don’t seem so over the top that they feel out of place, they just work. You truly get a feeling for their ideals and beliefs and motivations, and these are the things that keep characters compelling. To be honest, Baby Driver is a damn near flawless vehicle (see what I did there) that allows for fun, action, suspense and whole lot more out of a trip to the cinema.

Review Score : 9.5 out of 10

Review : Baywatch

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“Devoted lifeguard Mitch Buchannon butts heads with a brash new recruit, as they uncover a criminal plot that threatens the future of the bay.”

Baywatch the movie 2017 is here to signal the start of summer, and beach bod season, but its also supposed to make us laugh so does it? Yes and no, what we have here is a tale of two movies, or rather two directions. This movie is rated R, and it should be, and I feel like when its doing its rated R stuff it flounders, but when it does the PG-13 stuff, its genuinely funnier. The raunchy bits of the movie while I can see their appeal, just seem a bit lazy here, you know, going for the cheap shot. When the movie is more heartfelt and orthodox in its humour, its definitely funnier, and even more entertaining. All the cast here is great, even though some of them like Alexandra Daddario have smaller roles than I would have imagined, while some of the smaller roles like Yahya AbdulMateen II’s police officer are pretty well done, and feel impactful. This movie also feels double sided in its visuals. It goes from having some of the most fake fire I’ve ever seen in a movie, to having some stunning tracking and action shots of the cast when they have their full Baywatch moments. All in all I think this movie is a bit of a mixed bag, but with a 69 (that has to be on purpose right?) million dollar budget, I think it has a good chance of making enough to get a sequel, which with the potential from this movie, has the chance to be better.

Review Score : 5 out of 10

Review : Get Out

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“A young African-American man visits his Caucasian girlfriend’s mysterious family estate.”

My word… what a movie. So first off, Get Out does present itself as simply as that tag line suggest, but thats merely the surface, and these waters run really deep. I can only say so much about the plot itself in this review, because I really don’t want to give anything away, that being said lets really get into it. This movie I see categorized mostly as a Horror, and it is, but I think it really works as a Horror, a Thriller and a Mystery. This movie is also extremely subtle in its build up, in both its acting and its directing. It perfectly builds tension to such a high strung level that when it does inevitably snap, it really does sting. The movie also does an amazing job of using real life issues that people have, and turning them into something even more sinister. A perfect example of this is the way the film uses “micro aggressions” that are already a bad thing, but adds another layer of of intrigue and deviousness to it, that you really only see in retrospect. Get Out also does a really great job at exploring the truly layered concepts and issues that are race relations in our current time. There is a real attention to detail in this movie also, that gives this movie a lot of replay value, and a lot “oh shit that’s what that means” kind of moments. Get Out is honestly like nothing you’ve likely seen before. All in all, Get Out isn’t just an amazing directorial debut from Jordan Peele, its an all together amazing movie on all levels and deserves all the attention and money.

Review Score : 9.5 out of 10

Review : La La Land

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“A jazz pianist falls for an aspiring actress in Los Angeles.”

Do they make movies like this anymore? I guess every now and then they do. And I’m so glad they made this movie. La La Land, to me at least, from all stand points is as perfect as a movie can be. Its production is 100% on point, its directing is subtle when it should be, but perfectly directional when it needs to be. It set design and costuming  is perfect. The acting and singing and dancing is wonderful to behold. And most importantly, it all fits and works together as a whole. Emma Stone isn’t the greatest singer of all time, but the way her vocals are used here fit perfectly, and really make her stand out when she needs to. There is no one that does RE-acting better than Ryan Gosling, and there is probably no one more multi talented. The man can act, he can sing, he can dance, and he did some amazing piano work for this movie also. Enough can’t be said also about the chemistry between Emma and Ryan, they’ve done it before, and they’ve done it again here. La La Land is a real once in a so often kind of movie. Yes it is a musical, and if thats not your cup of tea then you probably aren’t going to be as high on this movie as I am. But even if you don’t like musicals, and you see this movie, and it doesn’t at least strike up some kind of nostalgia, and some kind of feelings in you, then maybe you’re dead inside, but if you’re not, you need to do yourself a favour and see this movie.

Review Score : 10 out of 10

Review : Office Christmas Party

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“When his uptight CEO sister threatens to shut down his branch, the branch manager throws an epic Christmas party in order to land a big client and save the day, but the party gets way out of hand…”

Project X meets any Christmas movie ever, and you get Office Christmas Party. This movie checks all the boxes yes, but not always satisfyingly so. There is a solid and funny cast here, at least individually, but they don’t always add up to something greater than individual talent. Like, theres potential here, but the movie gets there sometimes, and not other times. It does get there enough times to keep you chuckling throughout the film yes, but it also never gets to the real peaks it could to get those real belly laughs. And thats the real let down of this movie, you can keep seeing the potential, and you get close to it a few times, just close enough to keep you going. All in all there really isn’t that much to say about this movie. Its a pretty simple premise, and it has solid acting for that premise, and while its not the most predictable movie of all time, you can guess where its going. If you like these actors, or you want something to scratch that Christmas itch, then you can check this movie out, but keep your expectations low.

Review Score : 6 out of 10

Review : Bazodee

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“A chance encounter between Anita and Lee, shakes up both of their worlds and leading to new sensations and a whole lot of bacchanal.”

Bazodee tries to blend the worlds of romantic comedy, Bollywood style musicals and a mix of acting and musical talent. Does it work? Kind of. So before I get to the things I like about this movie, I want to address the two biggest problems I have with it. The first I’m sorry to say, is that while Machel Montano is probably the greatest entertainer to ever come out of Trinidad and Tobago, he is no actor. The biggest issue with this is that there are occasions where the movie tries to build certain things up, but when they are put on his acting, they fall down. The second thing that held this movie back for me was the absolute lack of sympathy for the actual love story between the title characters here. Anita’s soon to be husband is portrayed literally as the perfect man in every manner from his looks, to his job, to his affection and attention to Anita, and as such, it is really hard to go with her and support a lot of the decisions she makes.The times when this movie does break out into song and dance, the movie switches over to a very obviously voiced over, studio sang audio track that keep taking me right out of the movie. It was the sound mixing in particular that was the issue, it keep making it feel like these character who are supposed to be in real life, were all of a sudden lip syncing to some track, as opposed to sounding like there were still in their environment and with those emotions. My problems aside, there is enjoyment to be had here. As expected the music in this movie is very good, and there are some nice change ups to songs we know and love to help fit the movie and make them a bit more relevant to the story. There are also a lot of laughs to be had, and some of them are pretty good ones too. All in all, Bazodee has some stand up and some fall down areas, and these falls do keep it back from being as fun and exciting as I think it could have been.

(Also, i don’t know if it was just me, but there was this one light that was over the table they would use in Shakers that annoyed me for some reason, no idea why, lol.)

Review Score : 6 out of 10