Saturday, September 23, 2017

What's Next On My List? The Guardian

Rewatched one of my favorite movies a couple of weeks back and I realized I never wrote about it, so I will do so now because I think there are a few lessons in it that are worth learning.

Ben Randall is a coast guard swimmer who suffers a trauma and loses his crew in a big storm. He is sent back to the academy to teach a class of new coast guard swimmers and there meets Jake Fischer. Jake is a great swimmer, fast, focused, but he is haunted by the ghosts of his past. Once Jake is able to forgive himself and focus on the job at hand is he then able to become the best version of himself. Ben, on the other hand, passes the baton as he swims to his last rescue.

I saw this movie in the theater and loved it immediately. There is something about movies dealing with military, navy, this one is about the coast guard and even movies about the secret service that simply draw me in. America is big on these, but a lot of them lack an actual lesson or moral. 'Suck it up' and 'be tough' is not always a good premise, believe me... But this movie gives you an insight as to why some wish to help others. Superheroes do live among us, let me tell you that, and I bow my head to those who really put up their life every single day to help others. Of course, the history of law enforcement in America is completely different from the rest of the world. It is no wonder that these movies get made there. A story about the military of a country in Europe will either be about a terrible death or it will be boring as hell, no offense. There are exceptions of true heroes that made it home alive, but most of those stories have already been told because we, the viewers/readers are suckers for a good superhero tale. This movie in is about one in the making: Jake.
Now, Jake has lost his friends in a car accident and this has haunted him for the most part of his life. He questions why he was the one to survive, what it all means and sometimes there is no real explanation. We are not taught how to go on living once we lose someone. But if we make the best of the time we are given than I truly believe that each one of us can become a hero. Jake meets someone, falls in love, excels at his work and, in a way, replaces Ben perfectly. There is a lesson here, that we are replaceable, and I don't mean that in a derogative sense. I mean that sometimes we fear letting go because we condition ourselves to believe that without us something bad might happen. That we are essential. We do not like to think that others can do without us. It is a scary thought, isn't it? But life does go on. We are not forgotten, we are not taken for granted, no, the work we do will not have been in vain. Sometimes, however, we do more damage when we don't let go. In the movie there is a seen when Ben freezes because of his post-traumas and deems someone dead, whilst Jake is able to save them. Ben should not have been in the water in the first place. His legacy is not lost and his life is best honored when he decides to stop holding on.

Watch it? I do recommend it. There are multiple story lines and a lot of characters that can teach you a thing or to about trying your hardest and accepting your losses if they come. I personally should learn about this movie and let go of my monsters too, because they are causing more damage than good lately. I do recommend this movie whole-heartedly!

Until the next item on my list!
_ _ _ _ _ _ _

Ben Randall Kevin Costner
Jake FischerAshton Kutcher
Helen RandallSela Ward
Emily Thomas Melissa Sagemiller
Capt. William HadleyClancy Brown

Saturday, September 16, 2017

What's Next On My List? Paul

So, this summer I decided to compile a list of all the movies I have seen in my life. The list is of course well over 400 already, and I haven't collected all of them just yet. This made me realize that I have a lot to write about as well. I do cover new movies, but as you have seen, I certainly write about older ones. Why? Well, those awesome 90s movies that did not have the fortune to be advertised online still deserve credit and recognition. I am also not really picky about my choices, whether I liked it or not, I do try to write about them. With my new semester starting up, however, I will have less time to come up with ideas to write about. Luckily enough, I have class again with one of my smartest and funniest teachers and she alone is an inspiration to me when it comes to writing, and well, the topics we will be covering this semester are perfect for my blog, so I decided to post entries about them as much as I can. First up was Simon Pegg and Nick Frost's movie:


Two good friends, Graeme and Clive, a writer and his artist friend, travel to America to go to comic-con and during their trip across America bump into an alien by the name of Paul. Paul's life is in danger so he decides to run away, and the two friends help him, while coming to the realization that this is the kind of adventure they always dreamed about but never thought could have. With twists and turns, they make friends and enemies along the way, but never give up until they are sure that they did everything they could to help Paul in his mission.

I just f*cking love this movie sooo much! This. This right here is my dream come true. OK, not the alien part, but everything else: from the big comic convention all the way to the little American town with one comic book shop... it was perfect. I just really want to go to comic-con... just once in my life I want to be in the same room with everyone else whose life was changed and touched by a comic book artist, character, storyline or a simple drawing or altogether a fandom devoted to a story. I really don't know who I would be right now, had it not been for Ultimate X-Men, Star Wars, or all the manga that I bought weekly on the corner at the newsstand. This movie features two men who dream of making it in the world they love so much. I am fairly certain that not long ago not only where geeks picked on, but makers of comic books too. Yet... narratively speaking some comics beat classics! (And sometimes even Nobel prize winners write comic books!) While watching the movie not only do you fall in love with these two, but at the same time you realize that every dream you had, no matter how dumb you thought it was, is worth fighting for.
Second, the alien... although encountering one wouldn't be my dream, I gotta be honest with you, this alien in particular this one I'd love to meet because he makes you fall in love with our planet. Think about it, most people, those who prefer living in a sci-fi world especially, don't really love our reality. It may seem bleak and dark at times, not to mention filthy. But here is one guy who was glad to stay on our planet. He likes what we have (weed, Reese's Pieces), we are told that aliens are fashioned after him so that when an encounter happens we are not frightened, he speaks our language and decided to give up himself as well in order to help us humans. Paul's character for me was a beacon of hope, someone who emphasizes that hey, life is great and you should take control!
Now, this movie not only has awesome characters, but some of the best jokes. It has on going gags ("Three tits? ... That's awesome."), and it shows you really any and all kinds of people you can come across with in America (the dumb geek, the actual asshole idol, kind open hearted waitress, the bullies, the devoted Christian and the obtuse Christian). All of this wrapped in contemporary popular culture references, that will actually outlive all of us and be funny years to come. I doubt you'll find anyone who didn't fall in love with at least one, if not all the characters. The end also holds one of the best fight scenes ever recorded (it involes Sigourney Weaver!), and while watching the movies you will realize just how funny actually cursing can be when it is done very, very, very badly!

"- Fuck-a-roo, that was the best titty-farting sleep I have ever had.
- I got a feeling that you're new to cursing, Ruth? Look, cursing's fun, you just gotta pick your moments, okay?"

Watch it? Abso-f*cking-lutely! If you don't think that Simon Pegg is a genius by now, then you have a lot of catching up to do. This movie warms my heart and I will rewatch it every time I can. You need to see it for the actors, the story, the gags, the alien experience and for that little child that you, and all of us, still are at heart.

Until the next item on my list!
_ _ _ _ _ _

Paul - Seth Rogen
Graeme Willy - Simon Pegg
Clive Gollings - Nick Frost
Agent Zoil - Jason Bateman
Ruth Buggs - Kristen Wiig
Haggard - Bill Hader
O'Reilly - Joe Lo Truglio
Pat Stevens - Jane Lynch
and
The Big Guy - Sigourney Weaver

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

What's Next On My List? The Skulls

I made it a tradition of mine to write on Paul Walker's birthday a review of one of his movies. One for each year. The main reason for that is that I didn't want to rush with these. I still haven't seen his last couple of movies, because I don't want to run out... It might be foolish, but why hurry? This way I have the impression that he is still among us!


Luke McNamara wants to go to law school, but he has no money for it despite the possible scholarships that might come in his way. He gets accepted to the secret fraternity of Skulls, where his brother in arms is becomes Caleb Mandrake, the son of the president of the fraternity. The Skulls live and die by their rules, but when Luke's friend dies in an accident involving the Skulls he decides to stand up against them in order to solve his murder.

Right off the bat I need to admit that cinematographically speaking this movie stands out for me. It had a yellow/orange glare to it with the sunset being captured beautifully in multiple scenes. The person who headed the project knew what they were going for. Second, this is a great story, but in my opinion it was a bit rushed. We watched it with my mom and sister who both had problems defining the pace of the story. Was it a few days? A couple of weeks? It was less than a month, surely, or not? And this was a problem especially because the story itself was great. People who keep using dirt on each other to get ahead and everybody has there own little secrets. This is what Luke uses against them and the reason why relationships like father and son don't matter. This world is controlled by money. It is somewhat good to know that there is a moral code that they abide by, but those laws should not be above the general moral code of the people. And this is where it all goes wrong. Luke's moral compass resets when he realizes that there is no money or job in the world that can make up for the loss of the death of an innocent person.
Caleb too is not a bad person, he grew up under a man who taught him that he has to do everything he can to get ahead, no matter the cost, but he is not like him. He understand right from wrong and despite his willingness to do anything to make his father proud, in the end, it is not worth losing himself over it. Was this a good movie? Well, it is half there... I agreed with my family that a television series was a far better choice for this story. You needed time to understand what is going on and to get invested. It was, simply, too fast. Does that make it bad? Not necessarily, but it fell short because of it. Also it includes various scenes with Paul Walker half naked... like do you really need more?

Watch it? I would recommend it, yes, as I said the story is quite good and there are good twists and turns that get you hooked right away. If you are looking for a good Paul Walker movie then I would definitely put it on the list.

Until the next item on my list!
_ _ _ _ _

Luke McNamara - Joshua Jackson
Caleb Mandrake - Paul Walker
Will Beckford - Hill Harper
Chloe - Leslie Bibb
Martin Lombard - Christopher McDonald
Detective Sparrow - Steve Harris
Ames Levritt - William Petersen
Litten Mandrake - Craig T. Nelson

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

What's Next On My List? Josie And The Pussycats

With school starting I'm going to have less time to write, but I will still insist on one review or entry per week. I will mostly cover old movies that I love and well, there aren't a lot of reviews out there for them. This first one will be a movie that wasn't received very well, but I think is brilliant.

A group of three friends gets a record deal but their dreams become reality way to soon and their singer, Josie, becomes distant which the other girls have a hard time coping with. They find out that she has been manipulated into being an asshole through the recording company in order to get more fans to listen to their subliminal messages. The three decide to play music for themselves instead, as their friendship is more important than anything else.

I just adore this movie... it constantly breaks the fourth wall and that makes for hilarious situations with top-notch actors who know that they are here to make you laugh. YES. This is not a good adaptation of the cartoon, but guess what? I hated the cartoon... yeah, go, boo me, I don't care. I am a 90s kid, so I don't have to like it (the cat was weird...). And I take this movie completely separately from what it was meant to be, and once you do, you'll realize that it is brilliant! The aim of the movie is raise awareness to the fact that people are mindless robots that can be controlled and it brings across that message very well. It exploits the one thing that people basically cannot live without: music. It was incredible for me to come to the realization of just how much I cannot live without music. This movie taught me that.
Now, I never dreamed of having a band, I dreamed about being a musical actor, but I am tone deaf and I love to jam away on my ukulele but I am not talented enough to make a career out of it. That too makes me appreciate music that much more. This movie makes fun of fans, of fan culture, boy bands, of the way people can be made to buy absolutely the most useless of gadgets and all that through innocent people who only sought to have their voices heard. The villain, I have to say, is my favorite. It was played by Parker Posey, and her right hand by Alan Cumming, and they were disgustingly phenomenal! Once you realize the cause for all the trouble they caused you cannot help but laugh out loud! I am telling you that this movie is simply brilliant and if it did not try to use the same title as that foolish cartoon, it would have been much more appreciated by the crowd for its original plot and lovable characters. 


Watch it? It is quite underrated, in my opinion. The soundtrack alone is out of this world and I am sure it has a small fan base out there that has no idea just how many people actually do love it. But as we all know, the ones who vote on websites are not the real fans but the haters... Get a hold of it and have a laugh. It'll be worth it, I promise!

Until the next item on my list!
_ _ _ _ _ _ 

Josie McCoy Rachael Leigh Cook
Valerie BrownRosario Dawson
Melody ValentineTara Reid
Alan M.Gabriel Mann
Alexander CabotPaulo Costanzo
Alexandra CabotMissi Pyle
Wyatt FrameAlan Cumming
Fiona Parker Posey