Is it worth $10? Yes
“Guardians Of The Galaxy” is an unabashed entertainment that isn’t afraid to get a little silly amidst all its end-of-the-universe drama. Chris Pratt is an action hero, Zoe Saldana is green, Vin Diesel voices a tree and Bradley Cooper voices a psychotic raccoon. Conventional it certainly is not. That’s part of its charm.The characters are a deadly, quirky lot who fall backward into saving the universe. It’s all about an orb. Peter Quill (Pratt), who calls himself “Star-Lord,” steals it, Gamora (Saldana) steals it from him, and the villainous Ronan (Lee Pace) can’t wait to get it (a college drinking game based on who has the orb is in the near future). In prison after publicly battling for the orb, Quill and Gamora team with Drax the Destroyer (pro wrestler Dave Bautista), Rocket Raccoon (Cooper) and Groot (Diesel) to escape. Their plan is to sell the orb to The Collector (Benicio Del Toro) and split the money, but when they realize the danger Ronan and his boss Thanos (voice of Josh Brolin) present, plans change.
Is it worth $10? Yes
When Woody Allen doesn’t star in a film he directs there’s often a character who takes on the paranoid, cynical worldview Allen’s screen persona often features. In the funny but predictable “Magic in the Moonlight” that character is Stanley, a world-renowned magician who’s also an unctuous grump. To him the world is a forum for disappointment in which little goes right and what does is bound to be ruined, somehow.
Stanley (Colin Firth) is arrogant, pessimistic, smarmy, obnoxious and sarcastic. He’s the guy you want nearby when the world is treating you unfairly, because he’ll happily chime in with all the things that are wrong with life. It’s not that he doesn’t believe in happiness so much as he doesn’t think it’s possible, and he certainly doesn’t think spirituality should make anyone feel better. “There’s of course no spirit world,” Stanley insists.
It was another one of those typical summer Florida days (raining, of course), when I embarked on a southbound trip from my Tampa home to a galaxy far away… better known as Miami. This was an amazing opportunity to finally meet a great alien warrior who’s Hell bent on revenge, and no, I didn’t drop acid and watch Star Wars. I actually enjoyed one of the first screenings of “Guardians of the Galaxy” and had the pleasure of interviewing Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista) himself!
After settling into my posh hotel room at the Hard Rock (you have to go in style), I made my way to the local Cineplex for the press screening. While I can’t reveal anything about the movie yet (due to waivers and legal stuff), it was freakin’ awesome! This film was an excellent blend of Sci-fi and Comic Book movie mayhem. For more movie details, make sure you check out Dan Hudak’s review on Friday. It was because of him that I got to take this incredible adventure.
Is it Worth $10? No
“Lucy” is the latest Euro-thriller from Luc Besson, who might as well have his own genre of films. Each one of them seems to be a cookie-cutter copy of the previous, just with different decorations on it. Need proof of this? Check out how I started my review to his last offering, 3 Days to Kill:
“Luc Beeson certainly has the European action-thriller on lock. In his latest effort… all of the elements that typically occur in his more recent films are present. A highly trained American kills a whole lot of Europeans.”
This time, the American, Lucy, isn’t exactly highly trained, but does leave many dead in her wake. And if there is any doubt that it is a Besson movie, check out the poster in Times Square late in the film; it’s for “The Family.”
Is it worth $10? Yes
“Boyhood” was shot in 39 days, which is modest by Hollywood standards. What isn’t modest is the fact that those 39 days were over the course of 12 years, which allows writer/director Richard Linklater (“Before Sunrise”) to show the growth of a six year-old into an 18 year-old college freshman in the span of 166 minutes. It’s a remarkable piece of filmmaking.
When we first meet Mason (Ellar Coltrane) he’s a sweet six-year old who often fights with his older sister Samantha (Lorelei Linklater, Richard’s daughter). Their parents (Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke) are divorced, and mom is essentially raising them on her own with their father only around for an occasional weekend. Nothing particularly interesting here.