BROKEN CITY (Allen Hughes, 2013)

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Save for the strong performances (particularly Crowe’s), this is a sub-average entry to the crime noir genre.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

(Originally published February 13, 2013.)

THE RIGHT KIND OF WRONG (Jeremiah Chechik, 2013)

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Unless it’s Gru, I never root for a despicable character out to ruin a wedding.

Besides, the movie was just another lame excuse for Ryan Kwanten to show his overexposed tush. Watch True Blood instead.

Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

(Originally published February 12, 2014.)

ALL IS LOST (J.C. Chandor, 2013)

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My notes on All Is Lost:

1. If you hate silent movies, scenes that stretch on without a lot happening, or just hate life in general, then you can avoid this one. It’s a powerful, meditative story of one man’s survival. Nearly wordless, but oh so beautiful.

2. Robert Redford was magnificent.

3. Robert Redford was magnificent.

4. Robert Redford was magnificent.

5. He was robbed of an Oscar!!

Rating: ★★★★★

(Originally published February 12, 2014.)

HAUNTER (Vincenzo Natali, 2013)

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SPOILER ALERT!!

My notes on Haunter:

1. Imagine waking up every morning doing the exact same routine every single day. Except that you’re in limbo. Hey, sounds like my life.

2. Interesting concept of Groundhog Day meets The Others, but couldn’t sustain the scares until the end.

3. I couldn’t believe how much Abigail Breslin had grown. She would always be that perky kid that did a strip dance as her beauty pageant talent in the adorable Little Miss Sunshine.

4. I really liked the fact that you’re getting scared along with the ghost that was getting scared of ghosts. (Still there?)

5. As with all smart concepts, this one just had too many things going on and couldn’t address all loopholes.

6. Not a bad way to spend a lazy afternoon. Don’t raise your expectations, though.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

(Originally published February 9, 2014.)

AMERICAN HUSTLE (David O. Russell, 2013)

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SPOILER ALERT!!

My notes on American Hustle:

1. If you hate character-driven films filled with constant babbling and highstrung emotions, don’t watch American Hustle. You’ll get bored.

2. David O. Russell handled his actors really well here. They portrayed despicable beings but I wanted to hang out with them.

3. Amy Adams was the best thing in this movie. And it didn’t hurt that she looked really hot during the entire thing. Give her an Oscar please.

4. Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence & Jeremy Renner were excellent. Made me forget the awful taste of Silver Linings Playbook.

5. Amy Adams’ cleavage should be in a Best Supporting (Unsupported?) category of its own.

6. I loved the songs used in the movie. The Delilah sing-along was great but J.Law’s Live and Let Die scene alone merited another Oscar nod.

7. You have to admire Bale and his method acting. That tummy made me want to hit the gym. I wonder if he shaved his head for the comb-over.

8. I’ve never been this entertained by a Russell movie since Three Kings.

Rating: ★★★★☆

(Originally published February 7, 2014.)