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items tagged with animated movies

Girls Gone Wilder: "Spring Breakers," "Application," and "The Croods"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-04-01 16:47:56

Selena Gomez, Rachel Korine, Vanessa Hudgens, and Ashley Benson in Spring BreakersSPRING BREAKERS

At the screening of Spring Breakers that I attended, I counted eight viewers who walked out of the movie, and stayed out, well before the end credits rolled. In all honesty, I’m amazed the tally wasn’t higher than that. The movie being touted in print and in trailers promises a rowdy, randy romp in the sun with built-in audience-grabbers: Disney princesses acting nasty! James Franco with cornrows and grillz! But the movie that writer/director Harmony Korine has actually made – despite, indeed, its also being a rowdy, randy romp in the sun – bears so little relation to its cheeky, borderline-innocuous advertising campaign that patrons can be easily forgiven for feeling badly misled and deciding to bolt. It would be like going to see Dumbo and instead getting Gus Van Sant’s Elephant.


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The Agony of the Ecstasy: "Snitch" and "Escape from Planet Earth"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2013-02-24 17:48:56

Barry Pepper, Susan Sarandon, and Dwayne Johnson in SnitchSNITCH

As a film star, Dwayne Johnson possesses a lot of gifts – or, at least, sufficiently impressive gifts for what his résumé has required. Though God knows he’s physically intimidating, Johnson is also our most thoroughly genial of ass-kickers, with even his most violent of big-screen endeavors leavened by a welcome lightness of touch and hint of amused self-mockery. And as he has proved in all those bland family entertainments over the years, Johnson still manages to appear game and committed in movies that don’t deserve his considerable charisma, often salvaging entire scenes through unexpectedly silly gestures or readings that show just how inventive a comedian he can be. (I was happy for 10 whole minutes following his brief channeling of co-star Michael Caine in Journey 2: The Mysterious Island. They were about the only 10 minutes during the movie in which I was happy.)


Read More About The Agony Of The Ecstasy: "Snitch" And "Escape From Planet Earth"...


Ho Ho Horrible: "Rise of the Guardians," "Killing Them Softly," and "The Collection"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2012-12-03 13:45:05

Rise of the GuardiansRISE OF THE GUARDIANS

There appears to be a certain amount of bafflement, among those who track such things, as to why Rise of the Guardians has failed to make its expected dent on the late-autumn box office. Did the action comedy open too soon after the release of the similarly animated Wreck-It Ralph, thereby splintering its audience? Was the casting of Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy as makeshift superheroes an idea deemed too juvenile for viewers over the age of three? Was the film’s title generic and confusing, leading potential crowds to expect the arrival of the owls of Ga’Hoole?

If I may, I’d like to posit a different, simpler theory: The movie just sucks.


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Pilot Lit: "Flight," "Wreck-It Ralph," and "The Man with the Iron Fists"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2012-11-05 03:04:15

Denzel Washington in FlightFLIGHT

Within the first 15 minutes of director Robert Zemeckis’ Flight, you’ll witness what must rank as one of cinema’s most frightening, emotionally wrenching plane crashes. Yet in the end, and as harrowing as this passage is, I’m not sure that it’s actually more terrifying or heartbreaking than the scenes of Denzel Washington’s Whip Whitaker – the pilot whose heroic actions save 96 lives aboard that ill-fated flight – battling his urge to drink and, with only the mildest feelings of regret, losing that battle again and again and again.


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Elementary Ghouls: "Frankenweenie," "Hotel Transylvania," and "Taken 2"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2012-10-07 18:16:19

FrankenweenieFRANKENWEENIE and HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA

Not two months after the release of ParaNorman, two other animated, family-friendly spook fests can now be found at national cineplexes: Tim Burton’s Frankenweenie, the Mary Shelley-like tale of a beloved pooch’s magical resurrection, and Hotel Transylvania, a manic slapstick about the world’s most comically macabre bed-and-breakfast. And after catching up with the latter titles during a recent double feature, my immediate thought was this: Man, ParaNorman sure was good, wasn’t it?


Read More About Elementary Ghouls: "Frankenweenie," "Hotel Transylvania," And "Taken 2"...





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