Monday, November 19, 2012

100 Movies - Number 2! (21-30)

30. 3:10 To Yuma
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Genre - Western
Notable Cast - Russell Crowe, Christian Bale, Ben Foster
Synopsis - A rancher agrees to transport an outlaw while his gang are on their tails.
What I think - Brings the western back with a good remake effort. A group captures Crowe's gangster character leader and wants to transport him to a train. Foster is terrific here. Crowe's character is almost bipolar - he is mostly calm and collected with bouts of killing people. He lets the sheriff capture him without a fight in the beginning which makes no sense. He saves the group from Indians at one point - and does kill the one guy in the movie we are really hating on. Bale's character gets the short end, and doesn't have to for the movie to be successful. His son who doesn't respect him decides to sneak out and join the group as well. Lots of things that are head scratchers, but baffling decisions aside... a good ride.
Interesting fact - Eric Bana was in initial negotiations to star opposite Tom Cruise in this film.
How much did this movie make - 6.9 million games of Monopoly


29. Iron Man 2
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Genre - Action Adventure
Notable Cast - Robert Downey Jr., Mickey Rourke, Scarlett Johansson
Synopsis - A Russian attempts to strike out at Tony Stark and gets the attention of another wealthy business man.
What I think - A little too focused on the Avengers - and might have been better served with more focus on the bad guys. Whiplash (Rourke) doesn't get to do too much here, the final battle isn't very long at all. Sam gets a little more attention but we never treat him as a threat. It's like they wanted to do the Stark alcohol storyline but without drinking. I did like the War Machine stuff and the flashy intro. Everyone thinks that it is so much worse than the original but it does have the same tone and the things that work are the same as IM1. Pepper Potts is a strong character again though Black Widow doesn't add anything to the story.
Interesting fact - To prepare for his role as Ivan Vanko/Whiplash, Mickey Rourke paid a visit to Butyrka Prison, Moscow.
How much did this movie make - 655,000 skunks


28. Borat
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Genre - Comedy
Notable Cast - Sacha Baron Cohen, Larry Charles (D)
Synopsis - Fake documentary with real footage which spans across America.
What I think - Cohen mixes innocism from a foreign person with the ignorance of parts of the US. It's a hilarious mix for most of it. The weaker parts of the movie are the scripted scenes - one awful scene in particular is unwatchable. They could have kept the beginning and end and removed the rest of the script and just done the random fake interviews.
Interesting fact - Police were called 91 times.
How much did this movie make - 6 and half million lobster dinners


27. Prometheus
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Genre - Action-Sci-Fi
Notable Cast - Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron, Guy Pearce
Synopsis - When scientific explorers unearth an artifact that points to the origins of humankind, they end up discovering new species.
What I think - So much hype, so much mystery and they reveal nothing except that it is an Alien prequel despite there being no reason to pretend it wasn't. Oh and that they wanted to make a sequel. Whether they get that sequel will depend on many things, but it was a disappointment to mostly everyone and agreeably so. There was a good story in there somewhere but it was not explained and didn't end well. The beginning is a good start - exploratory with Fassbender's David on the ship and the crew meeting and landing the craft. After that it falls apart a bit - irrational scientists, uninspiring aliens. The biggest problem is the answers it leaves.
Interesting fact - Designer H.R. Giger, who worked on the original design of the Xenomorph Alien, was brought in to assist in reverse-engineering the design of the Aliens in the film.
How much did this movie make - 125 million red bull drinks


26. 300
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Genre - Action-Fantasy
Notable Cast - Gerard Butler, Michael Fassbender, David Wenham
Synopsis - King Leonidas leads 300 Spartans against the Persian army.
What I think - Good action story which gives astonishing fight montages. We want the King to live, but it fuels the rest of the country into war. The betrayal by the Hunch Back of Notre Dame was weak. It's the warriors themselves which are refreshing. There are clever battle ideas and a charismatic baddie.
Interesting fact - There are 1,523 cuts in the film, with over 1,300 visual effect shots comprising 8,631 visual effect elements. Shot in 60 days. 585 body count.
How much did this movie make - 11.4 million rounds of golf


25. Chinatown
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Genre - Drama-Mystery
Notable Cast - Jack Nicholson, Roman Polanski(D)
Synopsis - A private eye J.J. Gittes uncovers intricate dirty dealings in the Los Angeles waterworks.
What I think - Top rated Rotten Tomatoes movie in my 100 list. So I didn't like it quite as much, but it was very good and lived up to the hype. The ending was probably my least favorite part and the beginning takes a while to get into - I didn't expect this movie to be about waterworks... It was very fluent and Jack Nicholson is fantastic. Apparently the ending was a heated aspect that Polanski argued over with and fired the writer. But to me it didn't need this ending to succeed though it did to become great.
Interesting fact - The beginning of a South Park episode begins exactly like Chinatown
How much did this movie make - 153 airplanes


24. True Grit
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Genre - Western
Notable Cast - Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin
Synopsis - Tom Chaney murders Matties father and she determines revenge and hires an alcoholic marshal who teams up with her to hunt Chaney.
What I think - Respectful remake. Barry Pepper is in this movie for like 10 minutes and he's awesome in it. The girl does a great job as the quick talker. Bridges makes a good drunk. Damon kind of feels out of place but I kind of like that here. The one that is a let down is Brolin. He isn't given much to do and seems drugged out here. I really hate the Cohen brothers need to tack on the epilogue which is by far my least favorite part of the whole movie. The snake bite ending seems to take like 40 minutes by itself - there is no need for the ending - years later everyone died! Yeah, thanks.
Interesting fact - Rooster Cogburn is supposed to be around 40, both John Wayne and Jeff Bridges were in their early 60's when they portrayed their roles. John Wayne was 62, Jeff Bridges was 60.
How much did this movie make - 72 million half gallons of ice cream


23.  The Lincoln Lawyer
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Genre - Drama-Thriller
Notable Cast - Matthew McConaughey, Marisa Tomei, Ryan Phillippe
Synopsis - Defending a rich man charged with assaulting a prostitute turns out to be more than bargained for.
What I think - Wonderful ride with not nearly as many limo dealings as I would have thought from the movie title. The story twists and turns and by the end you wonder how Matthew is going to get out of his jam but they wrap it up nicely. Immense story. The trial aspects are awesome, though I love all movie court room elements. Melissa Tomei doesn't seem to do much and gets in the way of the story. Phillippe is delightfully evil here.
Interesting fact - There are only 3 short scenes where he gets driven around in his Lincoln. Not the impression you get reading the description.
How much did this movie make - 17 billion Christmas lights


22. Moonrise Kingdom
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Genre - Drama-Comedy
Notable Cast - Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray
Synopsis - Two 12 year olds fall in love together and send an island town in a tizzy just as a storm comes.
What I think - Norton steals every scene. Murray doesn't do too much. The two kids are engaging. The beginning is pretty out there and the plot is simple. But it's both quirky and refreshing at the same time. The lightning strike is out of place as the movie is fairly realistic and doesn't add much.
Interesting fact - The film opened in only four theaters, two in New York and two in Los Angeles, but earned $167,250 per screen, the all-time record for highest per-theater box office average of a non-animated film.
How much did this movie make - 31 thousand telescopes


21.  Mission Impossible:4 – Ghost Protocol
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Genre - Action Adventure
Notable Cast - Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg
Synopsis - Trying to stop nuclear destruction, Ethan and crew get disavowed.
What I think - Fantastic third sequel, especially after the last two were rather flat. Love the building scale. Pegg and Renner give some life when Cruise isn't present.
Interesting fact - Tom Cruise scaled the Burj Khalifa tower himself.
How much did this movie make - 4.6 million alligators

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