Paranormal Activity 4 (2012)

This demon is just getting more and more creepy.

This demon is just getting more and more creepy.

Directed by: Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman (Schulman directed the “is it or is it not real” documentary Catfish)

Written by: Christopher Landon, based off of Chad Feehan’s story

Starring: Kathryn Newton, Matt Shively, Alexondra Lee, Stephen Dunham, Brady Allen, Aiden Lovekamp and Katie Featherston.

What it’s about: continuing the Paranormal Activity franchise with another found footage film

What I liked: Well I am a fan of the franchise, though I do think it has run its course.  However, the story continues and I keep getting more intrigued by what may or may not be the final reveal.  See, I thought last year’s Paranormal Activity 3 was the big revelation and now it just keeps going.  I have this weird feeling that it is somehow going to end up tied to The Blair Witch Project and if there is a way for that to happen, it may or may not be the most brilliant reveal ever.  That’s just speculation on my part, though.  I like seeing Katie Featherston, I just wish she’d get more screen time in these films.

What I disliked: The premise is beginning to run a bit thin.  Hopefully the franchise takes a cue from this final season of “The Office” and reveals who is putting together all this found footage and for what purpose because right now, it is getting both cheesy and reeking of nothing other than an easy cash grab.

Would I recommend it to anyone?: Only if they are a fan of the franchise.

Rating: 2.5 / 5

Doesn't this make you want to watch the movie?

Doesn’t this make you want to watch the movie?

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Killer Joe (2012)

Truth in advertising.

Truth in advertising.

Directed by: William Friedkin (I haven’t seen many of his movies, but I doubt they get much better than The Exorcist)

Written by: Tracy Letts adapted her own play to the screen

Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Emile Hirsch, Juno Temple, Gina Gershon and Thomas Haden Church

What it’s about: a redneck family hires a killer to gain access to a life insurance settlement

B-Movie Alternate Title: The title it already has is pretty B-Movie as it is

What I liked: This is probably as black a comedy as it gets, and overall it isn’t even that funny, just slightly off-kilter and disturbed.  It has so many qualities of a B-Movie, but such powerful acting performances.  The entire cast deserved Oscar nominations in my book, mostly for how unflattering and brave their performances were.  Juno Temple is incredibly sexy, even as a white trash trailer park princess.  There are numerous stand-out scenes throughout, and shockingly a naked Juno Temple isn’t the most memorable scene in the entire film.  You just wait until you see Thomas Haden Church’s performance at the insurance building.

What I disliked: I didn’t necessarily dislike anything, but that doesn’t mean it deserves a 5-star rating.

Would I recommend it to anyone?: No,  it would be a hard movie to watch with company, let alone how skeevy you might feel watching it alone.  Very good movie, though.

Rating: 3.5 / 5

Between this and Magic Mike, it is a goddamn crime McConaughey did not receive an Oscar nomination.

Between this and Magic Mike, it is a goddamn crime McConaughey did not receive an Oscar nomination.

January 2013 Movies

High Fidelity (2000) 5 / 5
Silver Linings Playbook (2012) 5 / 5*
Django Unchained (2012) 4.5 / 5*
Knocked Up (2007) 4.5 / 5
Children of Men (2006) 4 / 5
This Is 40 (2012) 4 / 5*
The Castle of Cagliostro (1979) 4 / 5
Seven Psychopaths (2012) 4 / 5*
Dredd (2012) 4 / 5*
Get Shorty (1995) 4 / 5
Despicable Me (2010) 4 / 5
Argo (2012) 4 / 5*
The Cutting Edge (1992) 3.5 / 5
Zero Dark Thirty (2012) 3.5 / 5*
Bolt (2008) 3 / 5
Lincoln (2012) 3 / 5*
Cop Out (2010) 1.5 / 5

8*/9 re-watched

December 2012 Movies

Totally forgot to do this for December (and January will be coming up shortly, as well).

Die Hard (1988) 5 / 5
Bad Santa (2003) 5 / 5
Finding Nemo (2003) 5 / 5
Looper (2012) 5 / 5*
Die Hard with a Vengeance (1995) 4 / 5
Just Friends (2005) 4 / 5
The Matrix (1999) 4 / 5
About a Boy (2002) 4 / 5
Monsters, Inc. (2001) 3.5 / 5
Live Free or Die Hard (2007) 3.5 / 5
The Bourne Legacy (2012) 3 / 5*
Serendipity (2001) 2.5 / 5
Die Hard 2 (1990) 2.5 / 5
2012 (2009) 1.5 / 5
Total Recall (2012) 1 / 5*

3*/12 re-watched
For all of 2012, I viewed 87 new movies and re-watched 120 of them, for a grand total of 207, far less than my actual MovieADay in 2011.

Wreck-It Ralph (2012)

I hope they have a better cover for the Blu-Ray.

I hope they have a better cover for the Blu-Ray.

Directed by: Rich Moore (he directed many awesome episodes of “The Simpsons” and “Futurama”)

Written by: The screenplay was written by Phil Johnston and Jennifer Lee, based on a story by Johnston, Rich Moore and Jim Reardon.

Starring: The vocal talents of John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer, Jane Lynch, Alan Tudyk, Mindy Kaling, Ed O’Neill, Joe Lo Truglio and many other voice over artists.

What it’s about: a villain from a classic video game decides he wants to be a good guy for once, putting the entire arcade in jeopardy

B-Movie Alternate Title: 8-Bit Ralph… I don’t know, I can’t think of one right now

What I liked: I loved the entire movie.  I was fully prepared to be cynical and dismissal of it, but NO, it ended up being completely awesome, and not just from a classic video game fan’s perspective, but also from a movie fan’s viewpoint.  It is superbly well-written, perfectly cast (my god, Sarah Silverman was AMAZING), looks absolutely gorgeous (especially with all the environment changes from the different games), the story is tremendous (not to mention surprising, my god I can’t remember the last time I was legit surprised by a plot development) and immediately after I finished watching it, I wanted to watch it again.  It is easily the best animated Disney movie since Bolt (which – if you recall – does not lend itself to repeated viewings in a positive manner), and possibly greater than Lilo & Stitch.  It also reminded me greatly of The Iron Giant, and that is one of the highest compliments I can pay a film.

What I disliked: Shut up, get out of here.

Would I recommend it to anyone?: Yes, even people that aren’t gamers would still be able to enjoy and understand it.  It is altogether excellent.

Rating: 5 / 5

Best Animated Feature Oscar Ratings: 1. Wreck-It Ralph 2. Brave

Zangief describing the kind of women he likes.

Zangief describing the kind of women he likes.

Seven Psychopaths (2012)

The most ridiculous of the poster options.

The most ridiculous of the poster options.

Directed by: Martin McDonagh (I absolutely loved In Bruges, and kinda feel like watching that again right away now)

Written by: McDonagh again.

Starring: Colin Farrell, Sam Rockwell, Christopher Walken, Woody Harrelson, and a bunch of other sorta names in smaller parts.  Check them tags.

What it’s about: a wanna-be screenwriter ends up finding inspiration in the actions of his best friend

B-Movie Alternate Title: Se7en Adaptations

Movie Mash Up: In Bruges + Adaptation

What I liked: Well Colin Farrell has been knocking it out of the park for years, and he continues that record here.  Walken is sometimes the best part of a shitty movie, and in this case, he’s one of many parts, but so delightful to watch.  Sam Rockwell can be hit or miss, and for the most part here, he’s hittin’.  There are so many great actors in the cast, some getting the briefest of screen time, but wonderful to see nonetheless.  Loved the writing, especially the heavy-on-the-meta story line.

What I disliked: Unlike Adaptation, there wasn’t much of a “letting the viewer figure it out for themselves” aspect to the meta-ness, which is fine, but it just seemed a bit ham-fisted at points.

Would I recommend it to anyone?: Yes and no, so I guess that means no.  It isn’t a movie for every audience, especially if that person did not enjoy In Bruges.

Rating: 4 / 5

Goddamn I would have loved to been on this set.

Goddamn I would have loved to been on this set.

This Is 40 (2012)

Kids seem kinda gross. Stop having them everyone.

Directed by: Judd Apatow (I still think The 40-Year-Old Virgin is his best movie)

Written by: Apatow again

Starring: Paul Rudd, Leslie Mann, Maude Apatow, Iris Apatow, Jason Segel, Charlyne Yi, Megan Fox, Albert Brooks, John Lithgow, Lena Dunham, Chris O’Dowd, and featuring many more actors in smaller roles.

What it’s about: just like the poster says, a sort-of sequel to Knocked Up, about a married couple finding out what being 40-years-old (and not a virgin) is like

B-Movie Alternate Title: The 40-Year-Old Non-Virgins

Movie Mash Up: Pretty much a mix of all three of Apatow’s movies, 40-Year-Old VirginKnocked Up and Funny People

What I liked: Paul Rudd is in nearly every scene and that is fun and great and wonderful and everyone should love that because Paul Rudd that is why.  I am a huge fan of Leslie Mann’s line deliveries, her whole acting, just the total package.  She’s also a foxy lady.  Speaking of foxy ladies, Megan Fox does what we hope she does in every movie (see the .gif at the end of the review), and less clothing on her is better, as well as less of her acting abilities.  She was used the perfect amount.  Great supporting cast with great roles.  I wish Apatow would have picked a hockey team to use in the movie other than the Philadelphia Flyers, but at least it wasn’t the New York Rangers or Toronto Maple Leafs.

What I disliked: As with any fairly personal movie, the running time tends to trend a bit long.  Apatow does love his stuff, and there could be a few trimmings made to make it a better overall movie.  I don’t know if I really disliked Iris Apatow’s performance, as it felt “real” and not fake Hollywood, but it wasn’t great in the traditional sense.  The movie tends to meander at times.

Would I recommend it to anyone?: Sort of.  I thought it was great, but there are some audiences that it won’t play well for.

Rating: 4 /5

Did you just scroll down to this?  How long have you been watching it? Is it tomorrow yet?

Did you just scroll down to this? How long have you been watching it? Is it tomorrow yet?