Sucker Punch (2011)

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* Was the story any good?  Not only was it not very good, Sucker Punch was mired with strange imaginary battles that didn’t really make sense, but featured the girls, guns, katanas, zombie-like bad guys and lots of special effects.
* Were the girls at least smoking hot?  Well, they weren’t ugly, they just coated in a thick layer of make-up.
* Was the acting almost decent?  It was not even close to almost decent acting, AND we didn’t even get to see Sweet Pea do her ‘mesmerizing’ dance by the end.

In the end, I don’t really understand what Sucker Punch was about.  And it also really failed if it was just trying to show a movie with hot girls fighting.  I thinkSucker Punch was trying to tell the story of a girl being abused in a juvenile detention center for women through her eyes/mind.  From her point of view, I guess it was constantly an over-dramatic and over-exaggerated war between the guards and her five friends.

There is no reason I would ever watch Sucker Punch again, and there really is no reason to watch it for the first time either.

The Hunger Games (2012)

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The Hunger Games movie was pretty much exactly what I expected.  It was a white-people version of Battle Royale with less of a focus on the psychological aspect of the competitors.  Instead, The Hunger Games stressed the media and commercial aspect of the competition, and it actually reminded me a lot of The Condemned.  I was pleasantly surprised by most of the movie and Jennifer Lawrence was beautiful and innocent looking.  Strangely enough, she looked much better in the wild than when dressed up.  Also, I’m not used to seeing her in skin that isn’t blue.

I don’t think I’ll ever really understand why hosting The Hunger Games every year discourages rebellious uprisings.  If anything I’d think it would lead to more riots, much like what happened in District 11 after Rue’s death.  It was yet another classic scene showing what happens when people without guns stand up to people with guns.  I’m also opposed to the idea of in-game rule changes.  Although, I guess by doing so, they really demonstrate that The Hunger Games are indeed a giant commercial spectacle rather than a sport of history and tradition.

I wish that we could have seen the the games from some of the other competitor’s views as well.  At the end, it sounds like Cato also has his side of the story, fighting for his district, and living up to high expectations.  Unfortunately, the story only unravels from Katniss’s point of view and gives a very narrow perspective on the entire competition.  I’m not sure if this is the way the story was meant to be told, or if it is a testament to Jennifer Lawrence’s performance and the attention she was able to draw unto herself throughout the entire two hours.  I often found myself cheering for Katniss to win, but that’s partly because I didn’t know any of the other competitors in The Hunger Games either.  No surprise, at the end, nothing has really changed, and we can look forward to another exciting Hunger Games competition next year.  And sadly, the competitors didn’t even try anything revolutionary against the game creators or the president.  I guess we should expect a sequel.

I was surprised to see Lenny Kravitz play a key role.  As well I’ve been very pleased with Woody Harrelson’s recent roles.  The Hunger Games is definitely a  movie worth watching, but I’d invite anyone that sees it to compare it to the Japanese movie Battle Royale, or the manga if that’s more your thing.

The FP (2012)

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The human language cannot adequately describe The FP.  If you have seen any previews for this movie, then you have an idea of how ridiculous The FP is; if you haven’t, you should go see an official trailer right now.  I’m glad to know that my Dance Dance Revolution skills are directly transferable to “Beat Beat Revelation” in the future.  And, judging by their skills, I could probably rule some small communities and lead a fair gang.

The FP is kind of like Rocky, Grandma’s Boy, Mad Max, and The Warriors all rolled into one. So how do they write a plot centered around a DDR game?  Let me tell you, they “beat off” against each other for “street cred” and this battle  is also for control of the local liquor store.  As you quickly find out, Frazier Park is going downhill because the 245 from the South has a monopoly on the liquor.  Since there’s no liquor, there’s no bums, and since there’s no bums, there’s no one to feed the ducks.  And what kind of town doesn’t have ducks?

If you think that’s confusing, just wait until you see all the other random things that just happen throughout this movie.  I’m sure it will be a cult classic, and it will undoubtedly make for a classic drinking game in some circles.  I was very conflicted on what to rate this movie because for some aspects I wanted to give it as high as 8 stars, but other parts were so stupid that it made 2 stars seem appropriate.  I ended up taking the average.  It’s not what most people would call a good movie, but I’m looking forward to the soundtrack and Blu-ray/DVD release.  I just wished they had played more difficult songs in the movie.  They had the greatest opportunity ever to show off the elite skills required for some Heavy songs.

The Ides of March (2011)

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The Bucket List (2007)

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The Artist (2011)

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In Time (2011)

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In Time is a prime example of a movie concept which had so much potential, but just didn’t quite deliver.  Before I watched it, I believed it had the potential of to make an Inception or Matrix like impact on the world.  However, it seemed as though the director of In Time didn’t know if he really wanted an action-packed movie or not, and so the film just fizzled into the finish line.

It’s not surprising that I like the concept so much since I am a big fan of Andrew Niccol, and Gattaca is one of my all-time favorite movies.  The problem with In Time was its attempt to be an heart-pounding action-centered film, when it really should have been a heart-pounding dramatic tale with action supporting it between scenes.  Instead, it couldn’t compete with other action movies of the year, and didn’t delve deep enough into the social issues which the drama was based around.

Some of the shockingly anti-climactic events of the movie didn’t really help its cause either, such as what happens when the time keeper finally catches Will Salas and the time keeper’s history is revealed.  Also, the duo breaks into banks to “give time away.”  But the banks were so shabby and unguarded, it only brings up the question of why wouldn’t people have broken in if all a person needed to do was drive a truck through the glass windows and through the paper thin walls.

The Robin Hood-esque storyline and the issues of gentrification combined with the futuristic concept of “time” being a currency were great ideas.  But they just didn’t come together in this film.  In Time is something that most people will watch and leave thinking, “That could’ve been a great movie, if only…”