Sunday, September 30, 2012

100 Movies - Number 2! (71-80)

Honorable Mention: Captain America
Genre - Action Adventure
Notable Cast - Chris Evans, Tommy Lee Jones, Hugo Weaving
Synopsis - Determined to join the military, Steve Rogers agrees to a procedure which maximizes human potential. He then faces off against Germany's Hydra and Red Skull.
What I think - Chris Evans was great, especially after his turns in Push and as the Human Torch. Red Skull gets taken care of fairly anticlimactically. When Rogers wakes up in current day, it's a fun short ride. When his friend Bucky gets killed we are supposed to feel something. Basically beyond CA, there needed to be more development.

Interesting fact - They CGI'd the body of Steve Rogers until he becomes CA
How much did this movie make - $1.03 to everyone in Vietnam, Russia and Japan

80. Immortals
Genre - Action-Fantasy
Notable Cast - Henry Cavill, Mickey Rourke, John Hurt
Synopsis - King Hyperion searches for a weapon that will free the Titans and enable them to overpower the gods and enslave mankind.
What I think -
The depictions of the gods fighting was done excellent. The gods looked and moved really cool. There were some uninteresting moments and the climax didn't love up to the promise of the first half.
Interesting fact - Luke Evans plays Zeus - he appeared a year earlier as Zeus' son Apollo in Clash of the Titans
How much did this movie make - 209 million newspapers

79. From Paris With Love
Genre - Action-Crime
Notable Cast - John Travolta
Synopsis - A low level agent in Paris gets involved with a terrorist plot and gets a high ranking American partner
What I think - Started off very slow until Travolta shows up. Travolta has some great dialogue and energy. There is a plot twist which makes no sense at all and the climax suffers from it.

Interesting fact - Travolta talks about a Royale with Cheese which is the fake sandwich from Pulp Fiction
How much did this movie make - 44 thousand new suits

78. Night at the Museum 2
Genre - Comedy
Notable Cast - Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Robin Williams
Synopsis - Larry, who must help his living exhibit friends out of a jam now that they've been transferred to the archives at the Smithsonian Institution
What I think - Vivacious sequel. Entertaining middle act as Stiller runs around the museum interacting with the new exhibits. General Custer was especially entertaining. They build up for an army to come in the last act which is very lackluster.

Interesting fact - Jonah Hill shows up in one scene despite the trailer.
How much did this movie make - 1.6 million pair of Lebron's shoes

77. Batman: The Movie
Genre - Adventure-Comedy
Notable Cast - Adam West, Burt Ward
Synopsis - When the Penguin joins up with the Riddler, Catwoman and the Joker. Batman and Robin must stop them
What I think -  Wonderful introduction to the campy Batman. Some jokes are really funny(bomb sequence, shark), some fall completely flat(riddles). Overall relatively entertaining.

Interesting fact - The entire second season had already been shot before the movie was, even though it actually came out before the second season.
How much did this movie make - 0 mother's day presents (no theatrical release, it was 1966)

76. Batman Forever
Genre - Action-Fantasy
Notable Cast - Val Kilmer, Tommy Lee Jones, Jim Carrey
Synopsis - When the Riddler needs money to suck the intelligence of Gotham, he teams up with Two Face.
What I think - An agreeable second sequel. More light hearted and fun than Batman Returns. Kilmer is a step down for the character and the introduction of Chris O'Donnell's Robin is a huge step down in acting, likeability. Not too campy though corny in areas. 

Interesting fact - In the original Batman, Harvey Dent was played by Billy Dee Williams. Williams accepted the role with the expectation that Dent would become Two-Face: he had a clause put into his contract reserving the role for him in any sequels, which Warner Bros. had to buy out.
How much did this movie make - 1.5 million x-ray tests

75. Dark Shadows
Genre - Comedy-Fantasy
Notable Cast - Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Tim Burton(D)
Synopsis - After getting trapped by a witch that cursed him, a vampire awakens years later and tries to save the family name
What I think - Uneven at moments. When Depp is rediscovering the time period he is in it's lively. The plot revolving around the fish market is kind of lame. The female character we are introduced to never does much nor do we learn much about her - just hangs a thread over most of the movie.

Interesting fact - This is Tim Burton's eighth film with Johnny Depp, his seventh film with Helena Bonham Carter, his fifth film with Christopher Lee
How much did this movie make - 15.7 million Cider Mill tour tickets

74. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
Genre - Action-Fantasy
Notable Cast - Anthony Mackie, Mary Elizabeth Winstead
Synopsis - When his mother is killed by a vampire, Abraham takes up hunting creatures of the night
What I think - Troubled at times. They try too hard to include realistic elements of Lincoln only when convenient. Some action scenes are fantastic - the horses, the train.

Interesting fact - Tom Hardy was approached for the title role of Lincoln, but had to turn it down due to scheduling conflicts with The Dark Knight Rises. Joaquin Phoenix was the first choice for the role of Henry Sturges
How much did this movie make - 600 thousand trees

73. The Punisher
Genre - Action-Crime
Notable Cast - Thomas Jane, John Travolta, Rebecca Romijn
Synopsis - Frank Castle's son, wife and family are all murdered prompting his revenge
What I think - Sweet remake with an enjoyable cast. Way too much reminiscing. The neighbors are just boring. Travolta is entertaining even if his character behaves in strange ways. The revenge and robbery scenes are awesome. 

Interesting fact - Thomas Jane worked out extensively for the role with two hours of weight lifting and cardio, sometimes twice a day and a rigorous diet of health shakes. Jane also trained with multiple firearms and weaponry.
How much did this movie make - 2.7 million bottles of jack daniels

72. Tree of Life
Genre - Drama-Fantasy
Notable Cast - Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, Terrence Malick (D)
Synopsis - A man reflects on his childhood and the broader meaning of existence
What I think - There is a good movie in here, but it's surrounded by screen savers and Sean Penn walking around. The wrenching family dynamic is interesting, but it only takes up a part of the time you are watching.

Interesting fact - Heath Ledger, Colin Farrell, and Mel Gibson were considered for roles in this film.
How much did this movie make - 1,320 years of med school

71. Airforce One
Genre - Action Adventure
Notable Cast - Harrison Ford, Gary Oldman, Glenn Close
Synopsis - Russians hijack Airforce One with the President and his family onboard
What I think - Sometimes hard to watch. Interesting take on what the government would do if this would actually happen. Harrison Ford is a great action star and here is no exception. I love Gary Oldman though I don't think he is very memorable here.

Interesting fact - Won 7 awards, 2 Oscar nominations
How much did this movie make -
31 million white water rafting trips

Saturday, September 29, 2012

100 Movies - Number 2! (81-90)

Honorable Mention:  Thor
Genre - Action Adventure
Notable Cast - Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins
Synopsis - After getting cast out of his homeworld by his father Odin, Thor must earn back his powers to save his kingdom from his step brother Loki
What I think - Several comedic moments. The fight scenes are lacking. The actors make up for whatever is lacking in choreography. They introduce Hawkeye and he does nothing. 
Interesting fact - A fake town was created for the desert scene
How much did this movie make - 97 cents to everyone in the US, Canada and Mexico

90. Black Knight
Genre - Adventure-Comedy
Notable Cast - Martin Lawrence, Tom Wilkinson, Vincent Regan
Synopsis - A theme park entertainer gets sent back to the middle ages and gets recruited to save the Queen
What I think - The jokes about the times generally work. Still relatively shallow movie - mostly in the beginning and end. The fighting scenes are silly - we are supposed to believe ML can take on knights in battle just because he knows how to play sports.
Interesting fact - Chris Tucker was originally cast as Jamal Walker.
How much did this movie make - 1,320 Zebras

89. Battle Los Angeles
Genre - Action-Sci-Fi
Notable Cast - Aaron Eckhart, Michelle Rodriguez, Ramon Rodriguez
Synopsis - Aliens attack Los Angeles and a military squad fights to stop them
What I think - Difficult movie to watch, most of the characters are bland. The reaction to the aliens in the beginning is an interesting take. But it's the shaky cam fighting scenes and the uninspired aliens which are the biggest let downs.
Interesting fact - Shot in Louisana, and based on a real event
How much did this movie make - 424,000 great ping pong tables

88. Get Rich or Die Tryin
Genre - Crime-Drama
Notable Cast - 50 Cent, Terrence Howard, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje
Synopsis - Marcus decides to leave the drug world for rap, but gets a prison sentence and shot in the process
What I think - Another one I liked more than the consensus. Good use of the music, tight story. The prison scenes were interesting. I feel like they replayed about 5 minutes of the movie which is always a bad thing to do.
Interesting fact - Samuel L. Jackson was offered the role of Levar but turned it down. He told an interviewer that while he liked 50's music, he did not feel that 50 Cent earned the right to star in a film.
How much did this movie make - 2.3 million star names

87. Wrath of the Titans
Genre - Action-Fantasy
Notable Cast - Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes
Synopsis - Perseus goes into Hades in an attempt to free Zeus from the grasp of the Titans
What I think - The Zeus-Hades team up at the end was fun. Though cool, the final fight was basically a rehash of the first movie. Basically a weak story with little character development but cool effects/fight scenes.
Interesting fact - Hephaestus is seen conversing with Bubo, the mechanical owl from Clash of the Titans.
How much did this movie make - 3 and a half billion stamps

86. Lockout
Genre - Action-Sci-Fi
Notable Cast - Guy Pearce, Maggie Grace, Vincent Regan
Synopsis - A government agent wrongly accused makes a deal to save a space prison
What I think - The futuristic and space scenes/elements are neat and Guy Pearce is always entertaining. The dialogue is fake - no human talks in all jokes. Bad guys are lackluster though does have a surprise take.
Interesting fact - Snow remarks, "Contrary to popular belief, I'm not actually Houdini". Guy Pearce played Harry Houdini in Death Defying Acts.
How much did this movie make - 933 thousand months of WOW

85. Smokin Aces
Genre - Action-Drama
Notable Cast - Ryan Reynolds, Ray Liotta, Ben Affleck
Synopsis - A witness under protection gets a bounty on his head from multiple assassins
What I think - The intro of all the assassins is fun and you know something is going down. My favorite characters get killed way too soon though. It was clumsy in a few areas. The shootout at the end is excellent.
Interesting fact - Ben Affleck took 20 takes to do a pool scene
How much did this movie make - 28,000 years worth of park benches

84. My Best Friends Wedding
Genre - Romantic-Comedy
Notable Cast - Julia Roberts, Cameron Diaz
Synopsis - When she finds out her best friend is getting married, Julianne tries to share her true feelings
What I think - Picks up after she reveals herself, though it doesn't happen until the end. Distressful movie and doesn't give the main character a very happy ending.
Interesting fact - Julia Roberts hand-picked both Dermot Mulroney and Cameron Diaz for this film.
How much did this movie make - 596 thousand treadmills

83. Drive Me Crazy
Genre - Romantic-Comedy
Notable Cast - Melissa Joan Hart, Ali Larter
Synopsis - A popular girl agrees to help her neighbor Chase by pretending their date to win their affections
What I think - Good relate-able high school comedy. The leads are charming though most of the characters are either likeable or selfish. There's no grey here for anyone - just stereotypes. Does have clever dialogue and the movie has heart.
Interesting fact - Named after the Britney Spears song. The two leads appear in the video.
How much did this movie make - 315,000 karate lessons

82. The Deep Blue Sea
Genre - Romance-Drama
Notable Cast - Tom Hiddleston, Rachel Weisz
Synopsis - A married woman falls for a younger alcoholic man
What I think - Two of my favorite actors, though it was pretty dull throughout. Bad movie. All the characters were un-relatable and unlikable.
Interesting fact - 20 years separate the two men of the love triangle.
How much did this movie make - 5,714 dogs from the humane society

81. Mission Impossible 2
Genre - Action Adventure
Notable Cast - Tom Cruise, Ving Rhames, John Woo (D)
Synopsis - Ethan Hunt races to stop a former agent from unleashing a genetically engineered bio weapon
What I think - Story had some nice moments and twists. By the ending it was pretty monotonous. The virus stealing scene and mask revealing moments were on par for MI. The villain was cruel though didn't have much charisma.
Interesting fact - Script written around action scenes John Woo wanted to film
How much did this movie make - 1,800,000 shares of google stock

Thursday, September 27, 2012

100 Movies - Number 2! (91-100)

Finally made it through another 100 movies. It took a little less than a year, though took more than 6 months this time. I ranked every single one as before: 100 Movies Part 1

About each movie:
Keeping - Synopsis and cast
Adding - Genre, an interesting fact, the amount of money it would have made if put to some strange use

Six Honorable Mentions - basically movies I re-watched - good movies that I revisited which didn't count towards the 100. Headed for 1000! For the next 100 the goal is to include James Bond and Pixar marathons.

Honorable Mention: Easy A
Genre - Romantic-Comedy
Notable Cast - Emma Stone, Thomas Haden Church, Lisa Kudrow
Synopsis - A high school girl falsely defiles her character and then attempts to win back her school mates.
What I think - Emma Stone is entertaining, the family especially is funny. Lisa Kudrow is unlikable for the first time that I can remember. Solid high school comedy.
Interesting fact - Amanda Bynes last role
How much did this movie make - $1.15 for every person in France

100. Catwoman
Genre - Action-Fantasy
Notable Cast - Halle Berry, Sharon Stone, Alex Borstein
Synopsis - An artist gets killed and gets resurrected by her spirt cat with new skills and seeks justice on her killers
What I think - It picks up after she becomes Catwoman, doesn't make much sense for Catwoman to keep getting killed at her place of work. Just a bad movie.
Interesting fact - 43 cats were trained for the film. Michelle Pfeiffer had low opinions of the costume's comfort level from Batman Returns and consequently declined reprising the role.
How much did this movie make - 82 thousand swimming pools

99. The Legend of Awesomest Maximus
Genre - Comedy
Notable Cast - Rip Torn, Will Sasso, Kristanna Loken
Synopsis - Gladiator/Troy spoof as Maximus tries to keep peace with Greece
What I think - Strange movie, but has enjoyable pieces. It flows and isn't boring, some jokes don't hit but what do you expect. Ian Ziering is funny as the Brad Pitt knock off.
Interesting fact - Features Ludacris as the narrator, Saved By The Bell Principle Dick Belding and Ian Ziering – Steve(90210).
How much did this movie make - 0 pieces of chocolate (wasn't released theatrically)

98. Bride Wars
Genre - Romantic-Comedy
Notable Cast - Kate Hudson, Anne Hathaway, Chris Pratt
Synopsis - Two best friends become enemies when they each decide to get married at the same place on the same day
What I think - I liked this more than the consensus. The puzzling ending wasn't magical, but had a nice twist. The middle act competition was the best part.
Interesting fact - During a scene in which their characters slap each other (Kate Hudson) accidentally hit (Anne Hathaway) straight in the face very hard.
How much did this movie make - 11 thousand tigers

97. Big Money Rustlas
Genre - Comedy-Western
Notable Cast - ICP, Jason Mewes
Synopsis - A town gets oppressed by a gambling tycoon. Only the sheriff can stop him.
What I think - Kind of a broken sequel. They lost the funny parts which made the original so good - Harland Williams, the Sugar Bear queue, the introductions and replaced it with much less funny pieces - The Foot, Scott Hall...
Interesting fact - Billy Bill wasn't in this movie either
How much did this movie make - 0 segways (also wasn't released theatrically)

96. Season of the Witch
Genre - Fantasy-Action
Notable Cast - Nicolas Cage, Ron Perlman
Synopsis - A knight leads a group of warriors across a treacherous terrain in order to transport a suspected witch believed to be responsible for spreading the Black Plague
What I think - It is a good mystery trying to determine whether or not she is a witch. Stale from the get go and the director seems to not care and go through the motions so why should we care?
Interesting fact - The forest is named after a star that causes the plague in the bible
How much did this movie make - Enough to feed a family of 4 in Africa for 114 million days

95. Batman and Robin
Genre - Action-Fantasy
Notable Cast - Arnold Schwarzenegger, George Clooney, Uma Thurman
Synopsis - Batman and Robin team up with Bat-girl to stop Poison Ivy and Mr. Freeze from destroying Gotham
What I think - They were trying to be campy, it did not work or even come close to that. The dialogue is some of the most awful ever. Clooney is an interesting choice for Batman but the movie is problematic.
Interesting fact - The Batman costume weighed 90 pounds; with the material being rubber, the entire Batman's body suit weighed 90 pounds. Batgirl's and Robin's costumes weighed 50 pounds apiece, Freeze's weighed 75.
How much did this movie make - 595 thousand pairs of google glasses

94. Gigantic
Genre - Comedy-Drama
Notable Cast - Paul Dano, Zooey Deschanel, John Goodman
Synopsis - A salesman adopts an infant from China and pursues a girl
What I think - Kind of blows. The three leads are likable. The ending was pleasant.
Interesting fact - Matt Aselton – is a first time/only time director
How much did this movie make - 2 locomotive trains

93. Little Fockers
Genre - Comedy
Notable Cast - Robert De Niro, Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson
Synopsis - The tension between Greg and his father in law arise again with the possibility that Greg is cheating
What I think - Better than I expected as a reasonable second sequel. Some elements are shoe-horned it which aren't necessary - the Parents. The trios interaction is enough to make fans of the first one come back.
Interesting fact - The Jaws theme shows up during the ball pit scene.
How much did this movie make - 1 hydroelectric dam

92. Dirty Deeds
Genre - Comedy
Notable Cast - Milo Ventimiglia, Lacey Chabert, Zoe Saldana
Synopsis - A high schooler attempts to complete 10 challenges in 12 hours to win a girl
What I think - The bully is awesome (pictured). The challenges are interesting but gets tiresome towards the end.
Interesting fact - Was originally going to be titled "10 Things", but it was changed because it was too similar to 10 Things I Hate About You
How much did this movie make - 100 thousand cups of coffee

91. Push
Genre - Sci-Fi-Thriller
Notable Cast - Chris Evans, Dakota Fanning
Synopsis - A shadowy government agency that uses people with psychic abilities to do their bidding, but telekinetic and clairvoyant join forces to find a third psychic who can help them destroy the organization
What I think - Gets boring pretty quick and doesn't stop. The actual superhero abilities are used to a clever effect - the guns and the human shield. The mysterious envelope was a neat idea though the brief case was a dumb plot device.
Interesting fact - Dakota Fanning started acting at 5 years old and has 46 movies to her credit
How much did this movie make -269,000 passports

Thursday, September 20, 2012

My 100 movies (as of 2006 - Pre Netflix) 10 - 1

10. Spiderman   

Followed in the footsteps of X-men and also improved upon the super hero genre. The second might be the best super hero movie ever. The third was not focused - Venom shouldn't have been done if Raimi didn't like him.

Peter Parker: You don't trust anyone, that's your problem.
J. Jonah Jameson: I trust my barber.    

9. Terminator
Terminator 2 is probably the best sequel of all time. James Cameron does some amazing things that even to this day hold up. The more movies and TV shows that get created, the more convoluted the story becomes. But the first two are in a class of their own.

Kyle Reese: Listen, and understand. That terminator is out there. It can't be bargained with. It can't be reasoned with. It doesn't feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.

8. Braveheart

A long movie but every second is important. The ending is superb. The fight scenes step up any that come before it. They even build up another love interest as the movie goes on.

William Wallace: Lower your flags and march straight back to England, stopping at every home you pass by to beg forgiveness for a hundred years of theft, rape, and murder. Do that and your men shall live. Do it not, and every one of you will die today.

7. Space Balls

Star Wars parody like none before or after it. My favorite Mel Brooks movie. The jokes pretty much all hit. I got only about half the jokes the first time I watched it, so as time went on I picked up more and more.

Barf: I know we need the money, but...
Lone Starr: Listen! We're not just doing this for money!
Barf: [Barf looks at him, raises his ears]
Lone Starr: We're doing it for a SHIT LOAD of money!

6. Back to the Future

The first is a tight entertaining story. The second was always confusing to me as a kid. The third was too much of a love story that I never bought. But all three propelled everyone involved to new heights.

Marty McFly: Wait a minute, Doc. Ah... Are you telling me that you built a time machine... out of a DeLorean?
Dr. Emmett Brown: The way I see it, if you're gonna build a time machine into a car, why not do it with some style?

5. Alien

The first two movies are so great. The third had potential and it was ruined by Fincher and company. The first was basically a new genre while the second was more action but just as good and hasn't been replicated to this day.

Ripley: A transmission? Out here?
Lambert: What kind of a transmission?
Dallas: Acoustical beacon. It, uh... repeats at intervals of 12 seconds.
Kane: S.O.S.?
Dallas: I don't know.
Ripley: Human?
Dallas: Unknown.

4. Monty Python- Holy Grail

Possibly my most quoted movie. Silly and even though some of the humor doesn't hit with me - it's still the greatest of Monty Python. I always hated the ending so much.

King of Swamp Castle: Please! This is supposed to be a happy occasion. Let's not bicker and argue over who killed who.

3. Office Space

A movie that I always knew would hit home. Mike Judge hits on all cylinders. It didn't do well in the theatre but it gained the cult following for great reason.

Peter Gibbons: The thing is, Bob, it's not that I'm lazy, it's that I just don't care.
Bob Porter: Don't... don't care?
Peter Gibbons: It's a problem of motivation, all right? Now if I work my ass off and Initech ships a few extra units, I don't see another dime, so where's the motivation? And here's something else, Bob: I have eight different bosses right now.

2. Lord of the Rings

I like all the changes that they made to the book. I thought this was the second best movie even before reading the book or watching the extended versions which add so much great content. The ending of Return of the King does get very long, but it's fitting.

Boromir: I ask only for the strength to defend my people!
Boromir: If you would but lend me the Ring...
Frodo: No!
Boromir: Why do you recoil? I am no thief.
Frodo: You are not yourself.
Boromir: What chance do you think you have? They will find you. They will take the Ring. And you will beg for death before the end!

1. Star Wars

The greatest fantasy story, the greatest sequel and even a great conclusion. The prequels were awful indeed, though they were still a sight. Theres a reason it's more than just art to people.

Darth Vader: The plans you refer to will soon be back in our hands.
Admiral Motti: Any attack made by the Rebels against this station would be a useless gesture, no matter what technical data they have obtained. This station is now the ultimate power in the universe! I suggest we use it!
Darth Vader: Don't be too proud of this technological terror you've constructed. The ability to destroy a planet is insignificant next to the power of the Force.
Admiral Motti: Don't try to frighten us with your sorcerer's ways, Lord Vader. Your sad devotion to that ancient Jedi religion has not helped you conjure up the stolen data tapes, or given you enough clairvoyance to find the rebels' hidden fortress...