Anna

Anna (Sasha Luss) is a beautiful woman who has many talents. She works as a model and receives assignments from the KGB and eventually from the CIA in the US. When Anna needs to be, she becomes a deadly government assassin and possesses deadly skills that any ordinary person coming in contact with her would not believe she possesses.

“Anna” was not on my original “Watch List” I found out about the movie a couple of weeks ago. There was very limited advertisements/trailers.

The movie is a wild ride!! You have to paid close attention because the back story is played out in different sections of the movie. You are shown something in the present and then taken back to how it came to be. Often, movie goers don’t like their movies to be shown this way. Once I saw what was happening, the back and forth did not bother me. There is a ton of action and suspense. It’s very bloody at times.

The Paid Critics did not like “Anna” at all. I personally do not think the movie was that bad, in fact I thought it was pretty good. It’s definitely NOT a 4 or 5 Star movie, but it’s passable.

This is a 2 1/2 Star Movie!!

Toy Story 4 in AMC Dolby

Woody and the gang are back!! Nine years ago Bo Peep was separated from Woody, Buzz Lightyear and the gang. As time moves along Woody, Buzz Lightyear and the rest of the gang are now the favorite toys of a little girl named Bonnie. Bonnie plays with them all every day. Soon it’s time for Bonnie to go to Kindergarten. She doesn’t want to go, but after some prodding from her parents off she goes. Bonnie doesn’t realize that Woody is in her back pack to help make sure her first day is a success.

During Arts and Crafts Bonnie makes a new friend. She actually builds a friend using a plastic fork, some felt tubing, glue, clay and some toy eyes. Bonnie calls her new friend “Forky”. Bonnie absolutely loves “Forky” and refuses to be separated from him.
“Forky” meets Woody, Buzz Lightyear and the rest of the gang, but “Forky” soon decides he is better off if he’s in the trash, so he constantly puts himself in the trash while Woody gets him out. The story and adventure starts from there…

“Toy Story 4” is fun, cute, lighthearted and very entertaining. The cinematography is great. I honestly did not think this franchise would go on this long, but the story continues to have meat. There is a life lesson in “Toy Story 4”.
Pixar has managed to keep us adults all engaged in this franchise. There was definitely more adults in the theater than children. I am not sure if there will be a “Toy Story 5”, but if there is I will go.

If you like the “Toy Story” franchise than “Toy Story 4” is a must see.

This is a 5 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!!

Shaft

This next installment of Shaft find John Shaft Sr. (Samuel L. Jackson) with a son “JJ” (Jessie T. Usher) who is an MIT Graduate and works in Cyber Security with the FBI. When JJ’s best friend is found dead of an accidental drug overdose, JJ starts an investigation of his own, but soon finds he needs the help of his Dad who he has not seen in 25 years. The story unfolds from there…

The paid critics did not like this installment, but I found it to be pretty good. The movie has a time capsule backstory which helps to set the stage. There are some holes in the plot and the overall story is a bit disjointed, but it does all come together toward the end. There is some comic relief, but you have to pay close attention to get it.

There is some NOT SO great acting, but not from the headliners. Samuel L. Jackson plays a good Shaft.

This is a 3 Star Movie!!

X-Men: Dark Phoenix in AMC Dolby

The X-Men have been enjoying “Hero” status among normal humans when they are called out to use their powers to save and protect. But the X-Men soon find out that they will end up facing their worst foe, one of their own when after a journey into space to save one of NASA’s Space Shuttle crew Phoenix consumes the unknown fire source in space in order to save her team and the shuttle crew. The X-Men are unaware of the danger humanity could end up being in. The story unfolds from there…

First for the good…The cinematography is fantastic, the special effects and action are on point.

The bad… The story lacks emotion and depth and is not very entertaining. The acting seemed a bit dry also. This is supposed to be a “Finale” of sorts. I would have expected much better. I am highly disappointment. The story ends on a whisper. You are left more questions than answers.

“Dark Phoenix” is supposed to be the last installment in the X-Men franchise. It comes in with a whimper and goes out with a Whimper… The movie is not very memorable and does not do the comic book justice.

I think the 2017 “Logan” installment was much better and more entertaining.

This is a 1 Star Movie!!

Godzilla: King of the Monsters in AMC Dolby

It wouldn’t be summer without a Blockbuster Monster Movie to open the season. It looks like “Godzilla: King of the Monsters” is wearing those shoes…

New story centered around the efforts of the crypto-zoological agency Monarch as its members come in contact with and have to battle a wide range of god-sized monsters, including Godzilla.

Godzilla collides with Mothra, Rodan and his ultimate nemesis, the three-headed King Ghidorah. When these ancient super-species whom were thought to be mere myths actually rise again, they all vie for supremacy, leaving humanity’s very existence hanging in the balance. The story unfolds from there…

New Story, same outcome. It just took a bit longer to get there… This story involved Scientists actually harvesting the monsters in specific locations around the world and trying to control them via sound waves and other scientific technology.

The monsters that Godzilla fought were a lot more menacing than Godzilla himself. The movie was slow and dragged painfully to the ultimate fight. I found myself a bit bored and ready to leave before the movie was over. At the end, I left disappointed. There are other Godzilla installments that are way better than this one. I even saw this in AMC Dolby which means you feel everything in your seat.

“Godzilla: King of the Monsters” is not the movie to start your summer movie going experience with.

This is a 2 Star Movie!!

MA

As you have known, I do not normally review Horror Movies, but I am married to a man who loves them, so it’s Friday Night “Date Night” and away we go to the movies!!

“Ma” is subtle in its approach. The movie starts out on the normal calm side, but once things get going the Horror is “In Your Face” creepy.

Oscar winning actress Octavia Spencer is Sue Ann, a veterinarian assistant in a quiet Ohio town. Things start to heat up when a new teenage girl in town asks Sue Ann to purchase liquor from the local Liquor store for her and her new friends from school. Sue Ann does this and befriends the teens. Soon Sue Ann’s home is the place where all the teenagers go to party. Sue Ann has an ulterior motive though.
What starts out as friendly and fun soon becomes an obsession. The parents of these teens went to school with Sue Ann and Sue Ann has an ax to grind pertaining to some unfinished business from her High School days. The story unfolds from there…

“Ma” is a combination of “Creepy”, “Suspenseful” and “Interesting”. What really makes the movie watchable is Octavia Spencer. She really shows her acting chops. She definitely has range. You definitely get the opportunity to see Octavia Spencer in a new light.

This is a 3 Star Movie!!