Lara Croft - Tomb Raider (2001)

I don't think there could be anyone else that could have done justice to this role of Lara Croft like Angelina Jolie. At the height of her "hotness", Jolie gives us an awesomely good performance that includes some of the best choreographed fighting scenes I have seen. Watching this for the first time since Daniel Craig took over James Bond, I excitedly exclaimed "Oh my god, that's James Bond." Daniel Craig was just as perfect in his role for acting, more than just eye candy as Bond on the beach.

All the elements of a blockbuster action film, Tomb Raider gives it all to you and keeps your adrenaline flowing for the majority of the movie, but the story line lacked that something that drew you to the characters personally. It wasn't about the good guys beating the bad guys, it was just about how much action and adventure can we put in the allotted amount of time. I do wish they would have given a little bit more back story on Lara Croft, but I'm not complaining.

Overall, if you want a movie for some fun and excitement... This is it. It's not a serious flick, just some good adventurous fun.

Toy Story 3 (2010)

I wasn't originally worried if I missed Toy Story 3 in the theaters, I am not a fan of 3D, and I really did not care that much for the first two. But we decided to go check it out and I am glad I did. We did not watch in 3D, but I don't think we missed anything. There were not any effects that seemed to "fly out at me" that I needed the 3D for. First, save the money... No need for 3D.

Starting out, the Pixar short "Night & Day" was truly enjoyable. The concept was funny and kept me smiling the whole time. Then to the opening scene of "Toy Story 3″, take all the characters from the past and put them in a western setting, beyond believable... We are looking into the mind of Andy having half of the characters the good guys and the other half the bad guys.

The story is of Andy preparing to go to college and deciding what to do with his toys as he packs up to leave. A misunderstanding sends the toys to a daycare center and they are tricked by the "head" toy, a bear name Lotso, and sent to the area of toddlers that destroy toys. The toys need to escape the day care center and find their way back to Andy's house before he leaves for school.

The journey back home is a long, rough and dark road that finds the toys at a landfill and come face to face with their deaths, a scene that was intense, stressful and very scary for younger kids. I don't think this movie is a younger kid movie, just because there are toys doesn't mean toys are for kids. Themes such as prison, terrorizing, fire pits, and even insinuating a homosexual character are liberties that Pixar took to make this movie not just for kids.

Much better than the first two, Toy Story 3 was high action, suspense, comedy and everything to make an awesome movie for tweens to adults, but I would leave the kiddos at home.

Scorched (2002)

Three employees, a bank manager who is a moron, and a bank with no cameras? All the ingredients for a bank heist gone right... it was a different twist on the classic bank robbery, but with four different story lines it moved along really fast and did not slow down.

A movie that had enough laughs to make it enjoyable, but weren't the type of jokes that made the movie stupid. A good cast, good script and good storyline were all present in this movie, but wasn't enough to make it an instant hit, either.

Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy (2010)

Let's face it... If you like The Nightmare series, you will like the documentary; but if you love the series (like myself), you will love this four hour tell all on the life and times of Freddy Krueger. Broken down movie by movie, each section gives detailed information about the creating, the casting, the scripts, special effects, actually just about everything you need to know and then some.

With cast and crew interviews, there was nothing off limits. No one sugar coated the problems with the franchise and they told it like it was. I worried that the 240 minutes of film would cause me to drift off to boredom with a short attention span, but truly it never felt like a tedious watch.

It was just amazing to see how everything was created, how the effects worked, and how truly you can make a good horror film on a slim budget. These guys were truly geniuses when it came to creating a franchise that would be able to leave such a great mark on horror and film buffs around the world. After the past four hours, I may not want to sleep... not from free of Freddy, but there is a whole disc of extras I am looking forward to checking out next.

Hannah Montana: The Movie (2009)

RATING: 3.5/5
Honestly, if it weren't for the love my girlfriend has for Miley Cyrus, I would have never watched this movie... but I thank her for it. Impressed with storyline of Miley Stewart, who lets Hannah control her life and destroy her friendships, then gets tricked into going back to Tennesse instead of New York for an awards show. Her dad, Robby Ray tells Miley she basically needs to get her priorities together or no more Hannah. Sound simple enough? Well, when big headed Miley thinks she is better than everyone else, well... you know what can happen.

Yes, we all know that Miley Stewart/Hannah Montana is as close to Miley Cyrus as we can get to a biopic, and it is not a stretch for Miley's acting abilities but for some reason this movie did not suck. The music is catchy if you like traditional pop music. The film doesn't drag on, they get right to the point, make it and move on to the end. Not a film to be taken seriously, nor did they make it to be Oscar caliber either. It is just family entertainment to tie into the Hannah Montana franchise, but stands on its own without the need to watch the television show. Although I watch it at least once a month to make me happy.

The Tooth Fairy (2010)

If you just believe that you will like the movie, you will. That is why Julie Andrews, the head fairy, summoned "The Rock" to two week tooth fairy duty, because he didn't believe and was crushing the dreams of young kids around him in this good family fun film.

I guess I am a sucker for a warmhearted moral to the story kind of movie, but I am a little disappointed in the turn that Dwayne Johnson has taken in his movie choices. Similar to that of an 80′s Schwarzenegger where he decided to do more than a handful of comedies that were meaningless waste, The Rock has chosen a recent path of family entertainment instead of his natural action adventure. Not that it isn't cool to see that he is not above wearing a pink tutu for the love of a movie you believe in.

The movie had a good moral for a Walden Media picture, keeping family entertainment available for all ages, and was way better than expected.

Daybreakers (2009)

Vampires take over the world, human are extinct... What a novel concept! This vampire flick takes a look at the world were there are more vampires than humans and they are wasting away because there is a shortage of human blood. Trying to come up with a fauxblood supply to solve the hunger issues of vampires is not going well at all.

This movie was a turn the tables flick that kept us waiting to see how it would all play out and I really did like the fact that they did not over explain the lives of the vampires, humans or the cure that they found together. Too much technical would have killed the movie. There was no real down time... body count was high... and truly there was enough blood to please the fans of horror films and vampire (who don't sparkle) lovers. This gets two fangs up!!!

Nine (2009)

Truly an all star cast, the muses of Nine gave us very unique and entertaining performances that seemed to be more about eye candy that actually relevance to the movie itself, although you could tell that they were well rehearsed, comfortable and having a really good time. Truly an A+ for the muses.

I originally knew nothing about the film, the Broadway version or anything before the DVD came out for sale. We were in Best Buy looking at TVs and Kate Hudson performance was on and when I realized that silver-dressed hottie was Kate Hudson, I had to see it just for that part and well... I think I could have just lived with that part, honestly.

The storyline was a bit confusing, it jumped and contained filler to just have performances by these actresses, but yet they truly never did anything for the storyline of a director who was having trouble writing a script for a movie that was ten days away from production.

This was a movie that could have been shortened to just the musical numbers and we could have understood the whole movie... Thanks for almost nothing.

A Perfect Getaway (2009)

It's them... No, it's them... wait, it's them?

A Perfect Getaway is a non-stop suspense thriller that keeps you guessing who done it all the way through the end. This thriller, set on the beautiful coast of the fifth island of Hawaii and I have to say... I wanna go!!!

A couple of newlyweds head to Hawaii for their honeymoon and befriend another couple while on the hike trail, but when a murder of newlyweds happens on the main island, everyone begins suspecting each other. This perfect cast featuring Milla Jovovich, Steve Zahn and Timothy Olyphant bring this movie to the end of your seat and gripping the armrests until the very end.

This is definitely a movie that I could watch again, although I know who did it... Bravo!!!

Dear John (2010)

Dear John,

I have to say that despite the fact that you made me cry in many different places, you were a tad too long. Okay, maybe not too long in the true sense of it, but you did have many, and I mean many slow parts that I wanted to fall asleep in. Now, before you go off crying... I did like you.

Don't get me wrong, you were a very good movie. Channing Tatum was perfect for the role of John, even though I may not have watched the movie just for him. I do feel that your casting of Amanda Seyfried was also an excellent cast, which was the reason and probably the only reason we would watch your creator, Nicolas Sparks, who has a good way of casting actresses that I wanna see. But two hot people is not a reason to have to have a sex scene even though it was done tastefully. FYI, if you are gonna do a love scene with Amanda, in the future we would like to see more skin. Thanks.

Hopefully, with the next Nick Sparks movie I watch, Last Song, he will have learned from you and made the movie shorter.

Always, Jenny

P.S. By the way, I did like the twist you gave with who Savannah married.

Valentine's Day (2010)

I know that this is to be a romantic comedy, but Valentine's Day doesn't always end happily for everyone, but in Garry Marshall's world, it does and with this all star cast, it did.

Valentine's Day is a story of a more than two handfuls of peoples and couples, that all are attached to each others in one way or another. Circling around Ashton Kutcher's character, who is a flower shop owner who gets engaged, but is dumped by his girlfriend that same day and it trickles down from there with a best friend dating a married man, who is best friends with an single angry press agent for a football star who comes out as gay, and so on...

I could pick this film apart just on the flower shop alone, but I will save that for a rant for another time. Each storyline was unique, but at the same time very predicable. I enjoyed that they chose to cover all ages and all types of characters and relationships, from the young elementary school boy with his first crush, to the old movie starlet and her husband, to the single mom flying home to see her son, and the gay couple who proves that love isn't always straight.

Although my favorite character was Anne Hathaway, who played a phone sex "entertainer", my favorite storyline was still the main characters (best friends) who both get dumped and find love with each other in the end. I do think that movie would have used less "Taylor", Taylor Lautner and Taylor Swift I feel were just added to get the tween crowd into the theaters, although Taylor Swift's dance sequence was priceless and hilarious.

Over all, the movie was much better than I expected it would be, proving that love and Valentine's Day is more than just a floral day from hell.

Youth in Revolt (2009)

What would you do to be with the girl you love?

Youth in Revolt is just that, a series of random, wacky, stunts and events that take place to impress a girl, who has this vision of the perfect guy. But when you're not that guy, and try to be, only wackiness can come from it.

The was cleverly written and it has been the first comedy that has made me laugh out loud in a long time. The timing was perfect between the characters and you couldn't help but to have a soft spot for this guy who is just so plain that he would get over- looked in life. That seems to be Michael Cera's standard character though, it's not a long stretch for him.

Peacock (2009)

From my to watch pile from the Susan Sarandon AND Ellen Page sections, Peacock is a psychological drama thriller that the first hour is a yawn fest. A slow moving, weird little flick about a guy who has a multiple personality of a woman who is desperately trying to break free. It is a constant internal power struggle of man vs woman in his head.

As the story continues, the man tries to do the right thing by keeping to himself, but the neighborhood invades his space forcing the girl he is trying suppressed to break free. In the end, the only way for girl to survive is to kill that man inside her.

Over all, it was a decent movie, good story, very unique, but it drug... not enough strength to keep you hanging on; we found ourselves keeping our eyes on other things and not losing story by multitasking.

Cruel Intentions (1999)

The A list came out of this film, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe, Reese Witherspoon and Selma Blair are all pawns in this game of love and betrayal.

Step siblings at a prestigious a private school make a wager with each other to see if Sebastian (Phillippe) could take the virginity of the new headmaster's daughter. Winner takes all, but when he falls for his victim the stakes become even higher.

All of the cast were magnificent and this movie has become a classic for the 90′s generation, even winning the MTV Movie Awards Best Kiss, that year, for the lesbian lip lock between Sarah Michelle Gellar and Selma Blair. You can tell that these actors would go on to be our true stars of our generation.

10 Things I Hate About You (1999)

10 things I hate about this movie.

1. Andrew Keegan -Oh how I hate this boy in any movie he is in.
2. How we did not get to see Joseph Gordan Levitt without his shirt.
3. The dad being so moronic about his daughter going out on a date.
4. Was it really necessary for Julia Stiles' character to get drunk at the party, even though it showed how messed up you get...was it necessary?
5. Heath Ledger's long curly hair, he is so much prettier without it.
6. Is wasn't that funny, but was traditionally romantic.
7. The music wasn't that memorable.
8. Would have liked to have seen Julia Stiles' flash scene.
9. The VHS box cover does not tell me what year this movie was made.
10. It was only 97 minutes long.

Disturbing Behavior (1998)

Almost like an updated version of Village of The Damned, the high school is being taken over by "good kids", who truly are computerized kids. For the late 90′s, it is a good and believable concept. With hard music, all the stereotypes of high school students, a creepy janitor; this movie had it all.
Full of suspension, tension and sexy Katie Holmes, the movie keeps you on the edge and keeps you guessing on how they are going to stop the computers from taking over.
Although they leave it open for a sequel, the movie holds its own and is the perfect teen thriller horror flick.

Grease 2 (1982)

Probably the worst of the 80′s musicals, but this movie has a soft spot in my heart. Not sure why though. Songs are beyond cheesy, they don't even have the potential to hold up as classical musical numbers in the future. The acting was bad, the story was bad, the music was way too sexual, and over all it was a mess.
Why to like it? Well, the musical numbers stick in your head, even though they suck... The story of boy who wants the girl, but she doesn't see him for what he really is because she is too wrapped up to open her eyes. It is a classic love story, although too plain to make it a hit.
Maybe if the actors were not such jokes, we could place this movie up with the classics; but when the only person who is not a B-Lister is Michelle Pfeiffer, this sits on the shelves and collects dust.

The Stepfather (2009)

RATING: 1.5/5
This Father's Day, we celebrated with the 2009 remake of The Stepfather, with Dylan Walsh of Nip/Tuck fame and Sela Ward.
In this remake, we see a serial daddy who goes from family to family, killing each family then moving on to the next. Dylan Walsh was excellent as the creepy and pissed off Stepfather, who meets and joins the family of a divorced mother, her two boys and daughter. As people begin to question who this mysterious guy is, those people wind up dead, including the neighbor, divorced husband and a nosy lesbian sister.
I would have like to have seen his "fury" come out more than just one time with the kids, we only saw one time where he oversteps his boundaries with one of the kids. The movie lacked intensity and drug on to the last 15 minutes where the new daddy snaps and begins to attack and really, other than the nosey people, no one dies. It was very disappointing and a sad remake on a horror classic.

Bolt (2008)

RATING: 3.5/5
A movie I fought for a long time just because it had Miley Cyrus in it, became a favorite in Disney animation for me. Bolt is a celebrity dog who believes he is saving his "person" daily from bad guys, gets out and realizes that he is not the great super hero that he thought he was.
A story of laughs, action and adventure, Bolt is a good family film though some scenes like the fire scene is a little intense for the little ones. Miley is not that annoying, and John Travolta's voice is perfect as the innocent naive dog, Bolt.
A good story, this movie moves along fast and is never too dull. Very believable, this movie draws you in and gives you hope that Bolt and his "person" will reunite in the end.

Charade (1963)

In this 1963, who done it film, Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn star together a movie that keeps you guessing who did what and who has it, but they don't know what "it" is.
This movie was well written and kept you guessing the whole time. Not only was it a question of who is who, but the movie had many one-liners and scenes that were so absurd that I found myself laughing, especially the funeral scene. The acting was better than I expected it to be, as you know me and issues with classics. I truly believe that Cary Grant would have made a great Bond.
I also liked seeing Walter Matthau as a bad guy (spoiler alert)... This was a really good movie and definitely a recommendation!

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1960)

I particularly am not a fan classics, never have been... Maybe they are too simple, maybe my brain needs more stimulation, I'm not sure; but on our classic movie weekend, we started out with "What Ever Happened To Baby Jane". I chose this movie based on the actresses I had heard of and the description on NetFlix.
I wasn't hideously bored out of my mind on the story of two sisters, both celebrities, who are living together as their careers took turns in wrong directions. One's a washed up drunk wanting to revitalize her career, but can't because she is taking care of her more famous and talented sister, who was injured in car accident.
One of the things that I always found so annoying in the classic films is that the acting always seems so forced, fake and over dramatic... this movie started like that until we got to our leading ladies, who are some of the best actresses of all time. Bette Davis did a brilliant performance of the sister gone mad, as did Joan Crawford, the crippled sister.
Although the movie left me with no closure, I actually did enjoy the movie; although there were times I wanted to turn it off, I had to see where it ended.

Obsessed (2009)

Starting out very similar to "Disclosure", a married corporate business man is sexually harassed by a temporary secretary, who becomes obsessed with him and his life. She creates this fantasy life, documenting accounts of a secret love affair for over six months before acting on her obsession. Once she has dug her fingers into him, she sets out to destroy his marriage, but the wife is not going down without a fight.
It is a story that has been done, again and again, but for some reason you can't turn it off. Maybe it is the fact that Beyonce is so believable as a overprotective wife and mother, she is gonna fight for what is hers. Although silly, the final fight scene is reminiscent of "War Of The Roses" where the whole house will be totally destroyed before someone goes down for the final count, and we know it isn't going to be the "good" wife.
It took a lot of down time to get to the suspense, but the cat fight at the end is well worth it.

Nine Dead (2009)

RATING: 2.5/5
Nine Dead started out with a good premise of nine people kidnapped and stuck in a room and they had to figure out how they are connected and why they are actually there. Almost like a who-done-it, but with a twist. Every ten minutes if they can not figure it out, someone will be killed. As the clock strikes, another dies until they finally figure it out.
Yes, they figure it out... the guy removes his mask and it is the lamest excuse I had ever heard. But the twist comes afterward with the tables turned and Melissa Joan Hart freaks out and give us our nine dead. No suspense, no true thriller on our hands. It was just a movie that was there. I was waiting for something more than never came.

Train (2009)

RATING: 3.5/5
Reminiscent of Hostel and other movies that kill off crazy teenagers when they jump into random vehicles with people they don't know and automatically trust them, this makes for some bloody good fun.
In this "cut them up" film, four teens find themselves separated from their group and accept a ride on a train from a beautiful Russian woman. While on the train, slowly their friends start disappearing and the "good" ones go snooping and find their friends have been sliced and diced for organ transplants on the train. It is a save yourself and what is left of your group in this head turning semi-slasher flick.
This movie is perfect for those horror fans who love to see blood and people being opened up right on the screen, as they didn't seem to hold back on the gore. Though the movie's premise has been done, and done and done... it is always a favorite to see stupid kids, do stupid things and get it in the end and classic good girl, always comes out alive.

Rollercoaster (1977)

Taking us back to the late 70′s, Rollercoaster is everything a 70′s thriller should be, cheesy chiller music, no special effects, dummies instead of humans, and a story that takes a really long time to tell.
Throughout the movie, I could see how coasters have evolved over time, starting where the guy placed his bomb on a smaller wooden coaster that was a manual start and stop, and ending with our bomber trying to take down the newest of the new, which was the Revolution at Magic Mountain. Growing up in southern California, this ride was a part of my childhood but I am glad I never watched this as a kid or I would have been traumatized and would have never rode this.
Overall, this movie had a decent storyline, but lots of down time and the high speed intensity lacked to make this a true thriller, but it was fun to go back and enjoy a good film from the 70′s.

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