The Art of Racing in the Rain

“The Art of Racing in the Rain” is based on the best-selling novel by Garth Stein. The story is about a race car driver, Denny Swift (Milo Ventimiglia), who has a dog named “Enzo”. Together they go through the day to day of life as a Racer Car Driver and his dog. Denny soon meets a woman, Eve (Amanda Seyfried) who becomes the love of his life. Denny and Eve soon get married and life really starts. The story unfolds from there…

I did not read the book, but I thought the movie was pretty good. It held my attention and had many elements that are expected in a dramatic type of film. There are lump in the throat moments and teary eyed moments, but that is to be expected because this story brings those emotions to the surface. While there are a lot of things going on in the movie, one thing stand out, “A Man and his Dog” going through good times and bad times. A Dog is one of the most faithful friends a person can have.

The paid critics were not too high on “The Art of Racing in the Rain”, but I think it’s worth a look. The movie is about life and almost everything that is in the movie could happen in real-life.

This is a 3 ½ Star Movie!!

The Kitchen

Three Hell’s Kitchen Housewives soon find themselves husband-less because their husbands tried to rob a liquor store and failed. Once their husbands were sentenced to spent time behind bars, the three wives went about hatching their own plans to make money in Hell’s Kitchen. The story unfolds from there…

I had high hopes for “The Kitchen” when I first saw trailers of the movie, I thought wow this should be interesting.
My hopes were dashed only 20 minutes into the movie. The movie was dry and lifeless, almost listless. I found myself a bit bored.
There was no real back story. Each housewife had a story, but it never really came to the surface. Those stories should have come to the surface even for just a few scenes so you could understand the events that happened.

There is some suspense and intrigue, but not nearly enough to justify a $15 dollar movie ticket. I was very surprised given the cast in the movie, but it just goes to show that a great cast does not always translate into a great movie.

I say wait for cable for “The Kitchen”.

This is a 1 Star Movie!!

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Wow!! It seems like it’s been ages since I saw and wrote a movie review, but in reality it’s only been 3 weeks. I hope this is the only 3 week drought for me for the remainder of the year. It seems that this July has been a surprisingly very dismal month for movies. Let’s hope August is more promising.

Quentin Tarantino is back with his ninth movie with a story set in LA in the late 60’s into the early 70’s. One of the leading characters in the movie is Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) who happens to be a former Western TV Series Star and his long time stunt double and driver Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt). Both men are struggling to make it in a Hollywood environment that they no longer recognize. Rick finds out he has a very famous neighbor…Sharon Tate. The story unfolds from there…

This movie is painfully long. I had no idea it would be 2 hours and 39 minutes. The story drags a bit, but there is a little bit of everything in this movie. There are parts that will make you yawn, parts that will make you laugh and parts that will make you sit up in your seat. The movie contains fiction as well as historical facts about Hollywood in the late 60’s and early 70’s. Quentin Tarantino has been known for making long satires, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” is no exception.

This is a 3 ½ Star Movie!!

Late Night

“Late Night” is about a Late Night Show host, Katherine Newbury (Emma Thompson) and answering the Diversity question when she hires her first female writer, Molly Patel (Mindy Kaling) and the interactions that occur with the “All Male” writer staff. At first the men think Molly is an office assistant until they are told that she is a writer and will be working with them. This does not go over very well at first. The men actually use the restroom marked “Women” among other things.
Show host, Katherine Newbury is in danger of losing her job due to ratings so she is hoping that Molly can help find that spark again so that the ratings will climb back up. But Katherine and Molly clash due to a generation and cultural difference. The story unfolds from there…

There is a lot of real-world workplace scenarios that are played out in this movie. We are living in a time where Diversity is a big deal. A Woman working in an all-male group/department is becoming a thing of the past. This movie illustrates that.

All of that aside, the movie is fun and there is definitely comic relief. Great acting from Emma Thompson and Mindy Kaling make this a good choice.

This is a 3 ½ Star Movie!!

A Dog’s Journey

“A Dog’s Journey” finds Bailey on the Michigan Farm living the good life with Ethan (Dennis Quaid) and Ethan’s wife Hannah (Marg Helgenberger). They now have a granddaughter her name is CJ (Kathryn Prescott). Bailey tries his best to watch out for CJ and keep her out of harm’s way. CJ’s Mom, Gloria (Betty Gilpin) does not like dogs. This is obvious to Bailey. The problems really start when Gloria decides to move and take CJ away. This leaves Ethan, Hannah and Bailey very sad. As Bailey’s soul prepares to leave this life, he promises Ethan that he will always watch over CJ no matter what. The story unfolds from there…

“A Dog’s Journey” is very heart-warming, entertaining and enlightening. It starts off a bit light, but half way through the movie you get the idea that a dog’s journey through life is deeper and more meaningful than we realize.

If you saw the first installment, “A Dog’s Purpose” and liked it, you should definitely see “A Dog’s Journey”.

This is a 3 ½ Star Movie!!

The Best of Enemies

Based on a true story, “The Best of Enemies” is centered around the unlikely friendship between Ann Atwater (Henson) an out spoken civil rights activist and C.P Ellis (Rockwell) a local Ku Klux Klan Leader. Together they both reluctantly co-chair a community committee that is centered on eliminating racism and desegregation of the schools in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina in 1971. The events that occur will change both of their lives and Durham, NC forever. The story unfolds from there…

The movie gets off to a really slow start and I was bored at first, but along the way it picked up steam and became not only interesting but comical. This is once again another movie with HUGH racial undertones.
Hollywood seems to like making these types of movies as they continue to enjoy award success (“Green Book” took home the Best Picture Oscar)

“The Best of Enemies” is no “Green Book”. In fact the best elements of “The Best of Enemies” is Taraji P. Henson and Sam Rockwell. They both turn in excellent performances, but you will remember Taraji P.

The paid critics were ‘Luke-Warm” about “The Best of Enemies”. I think it’s worth a look.

This is a 3 Star Movie!!

Five Feet Apart

“Five Feet Apart” is about seventeen year old Stella Grant (Haley Lu Richardson) who is like most teenagers, she has friends, she’s popular, attached to her phone and laptop, but one thing is very different, Stella lives with Cystic Fibrosis and she spends most of her time in a hospital.

Stella meets a fellow CF patient named Will Newman (Cole Sprouse).
There’s an instant attraction but because of their illness Stella and Will must remain five feet apart. As their friendship in the hospital blossoms they are tempted to throw caution to the wind. The story unfolds from there…

“Five Feet Apart” comes very close to being one of those “Been There Done That” type of movies, but the performances of Haley Lu Richardson and Cole Sprouse keep you watching. They are the best elements of the movie.

Some elements/scenes in “Five Feet Apart” will remind you of the 2014 film “The Fault in Our Stars”. The movie is ok, but I am not sure it’s worth the hefty ticket prices at the box office.

This is a 2 ½ Star Movie!!