Moana

I am ending the year with one last review…

“Moana” is a delightful, heart-warming and entertaining animated movie. If you haven’t seen it, you should.
The movie is predictable, but refreshing because there are some twists and turns in the story that were not obvious.
“Moana” is about a young Pacific-Islander girl, Moana (Auli’i Cravalho) who against her Father’s wishes goes out on a dangerous mission across the Pacific Ocean to save her people. There are many obstacles along the way, but none of them deter Moana.

The CGI and special effects are tastefully done. The cinematography is excellent. The story and the characters are very endearing.

“Moana” is a movie for the entire family regardless of age.

This is a 5 Star Movie!

Jackie

“Jackie” is an intimate look at the events before, during and after one of the most tragic moments to happen in American History.

Mrs. Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy (Natalie Portman) suffered greatly after the loss of her husband and President of the United States but never showed any anguish while in public. “Jackie” gives you a more behind the scenes look at some of the events, conversations and controversy that took place after John F. Kennedy was assassinated and then laid to rest.

The movie is moving and eye-opening. Natalie Portman is outstanding as Mrs. Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy. The movie borders on a documentary/mini-biopic.

“Jackie” opened on Dec 2nd in limited-release (5 Theaters). It’s only opened in a hand full of theaters around the country (348 Theaters). Check it out if you can find it.

This is a 4 Star Movie!

La La Land

“La La Land” is about an aspiring actress (Emma Stone) and a Jazz Man (Ryan Gosling) who are both trying to catch a break in the entertainment and movie business in modern day Hollywood. They both struggle to make ends meet while auditioning for various roles and gigs. They are both overwhelmed with disappointment, but finally they each catch a small break, the story unfolds from there…

The movie is a lively “Singing and Dancing” extravaganza. It will remind you of the days of Fred Astaire, Bing Crosby and Ginger Rogers, only this is modern day Hollywood and a modern day musical.

The movie is executed well, is very entertaining and enjoyable. The cinematography is fabulous. Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling have good on-screen chemistry. The Jazz music that is played through-out is awesome!

“La La Land” is worth the ticket.

This is a 4 ½ Star Movie!

Fences

Denzel Washington and Viola Davis both give masterful performances in the big screen adaptation of “Fences”.

The main characters in the movie are both complex and deep. Their performances make it look easy.

“Fences” is about a family of color in 1950’s Pittsburgh. The Patriarch is Troy (Denzel Washington) who works as a city garbage collector. His wife, Rose (Viola Davis) takes care of the house and their teenage son Cory (Jovan Adepo).
Troy is trying to pave a path to a better life for Cory, but Cory thinks his Dad is selling out to the “Establishment”. The story unfolds from there…

“Fences” is August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play that has been brought to the big screen. The movie shows its “stage” roots a bit, but that does not stop it from being excellent. Denzel not only stars but also directs. Viola and Denzel’s performances outshine and upstage any possible problems.

What a nice way to spend a Sunday afternoon that also happens to be Christmas Day!

This is a 5 Star Movie!

The Passengers in Real 3D

“The Passengers” is about an idea that would be wonderful if it were clearly mapped out and executed appropriately, but unfortunately for the movie it’s not.

Imagine being able to go to sleep for about 135 years while being transported aboard a luxury space ship and wake up to embark on a brand new world. When you wake up you are the same age you were when you went to sleep. Along the way though the space ship has problems, this causes several people to wake up unexpectedly. The story unfolds from there…

The idea behind “The Passengers” is great, but there is no purpose, cause or reason why. Nothing is explained as to why and how these people were selected to make this journey. There are a ton of questions, but no answers. No real plot.

Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence have great on-screen chemistry, but even that is not enough to make “The Passengers” a blockbuster hit.

This is a 2 Star Movie!

Sing in Real 3D

“Sing” is a cute funny animated movie. It’s not “Zootopia” or “The Secret Life of Pets”, but it is still entertaining.

A Koala Bear impresario, named Buster Moon (McConaughey) stages a singing competition for the animal kingdom much like “America’s Got Talent”, but this event is to save a Grand Theater. Buster advertises that there will be a grand prize of $100,000 dollars, but the selected singers find out by accident that there isn’t any prize money. The story unfolds from there…

“Sing” is funny, silly and warm-hearted entertainment. The story is familiar as it definitely relates to real-life situations.

The movie is more for teenagers, not really a child under 8 years old. There is some rude humor and some disturbing peril that a younger child might not understand.

If you are looking for a movie this holiday season that is animated, funny and warm-hearted then “Sing” is your movie.

This is a 3 ½ Star Movie!

Assassin’s Creed in Real 3D

I never played any of the video arcade games of Assassin’s Creed, but judging from the movie, the game must be pretty serious.

I have been waiting for this movie for over 18 months. It’s better than I expected, but not as good as I hoped it would be.

The movie is dark, grey and a bit dreary. The action is awesome!! There are many cool fight scenes and sequences. Michael Fassbender looks “hot” without a shirt on. The 3D aspects are ok.

The bigger issues are that the movie is disorganized, the story and/or plot is disjointed. Nothing happens in a sequence that you can really follow. There are philosophical undertones to the movie, but even those are not fully developed and there is too much CGI.

I left the theater with a big question mark on my face because I didn’t really understand the story or lack there-of.

“Assassin’s Creed” may join the likes of “Silent Hill” and “Hitman 47” that is a video game to big screen adaptation that isn’t very successful.

If you played the game or are a video game fanatic, the fight scenes and sequences are pretty awesome to see.

This is a 2 ½ Star Movie!