The Little Prince Official Trailer (2015)

Honestly, need I say more than the title of this post? This looks magical. I love how they took the story of The Little Prince and created a story around that. Amazing. One of my favorite adaptations of The Little Prince was a theater production I saw that had not only amazing acting, but amazing acrobatics. Here is a link to my review of that production. You can read more about the 2015 animated movie production here and watch the trailer below!

Movie Review: Walk of Shame

Walk of Shame stars Elizabeth Banks and James Marsden. Honestly, anything that stars Elizabeth Banks gets my attention and that was the sole reason I picked up the movie from Redbox. Plus, I like a good lighthearted comedy and this movie made me laugh, out loud, several times. Don’t be fooled by the previews before the movie. Mine included an advertisement for Jarhead 2 and the Scorpion King 4. I started to question my judgment in my movie pick, much like I imagined other people would be doing on their walk of shames the next morning. But I found myself having a wonderful time watching Elizabeth Banks navigate through a handful of hilarious situations with desperation and bad decision making.

When Meghan Miles finds herself one night having a pity party because her fiance dumped her and she didn’t get the promotion that she wanted, she decides to go out drinking with her friends. But a night of boozing becomes too much and during an attempted escape from a club of not so sober patrons, Meghan gets help from a charming stranger. Only so slightly sober herself, Meghan decides to go home with the charming stranger because only her emptied out rooms are waiting for her at her apartment. The two spend a night connecting, playing games, and laughing, but the next morning Meghan wakes up to find out that she might still get the promotion if only she can make it to an interview. In a panic Meghan leaves without her cell phone only to discover her car has been towed and just her luck her purse is in her car. Unable to even take a bus trip across town, Meghan begins a day of adventure in a pair of high heels trying to get her car and purse back and make it to her interview on time.


Meghan is a desperate woman, out of her league, who finds herself running from the police, drug dealers, and people who want to Facebook her “Walk of Shame.” Elizabeth Banks plays desperate perfectly. She is hilarious. I love her so much! Super girl crush on Elizabeth Banks happening right now. There is so much fun to this movie that I can only highlight a few of those moments.

Ghetto Crack House

The only people awake early in the morning as Meghan tries to get back her vehicle are hookers and drug dealers (and a jogger), so in desperation Meghan tries to plead with a drug dealer to let her use his phone. But the 5-0 are about to raid that particular corner and Meghan follows after the drug dealer into his ghetto crack house only to realize when he finally hands over the phone, that the only phone numbers she has memorized are her own, her parents, and her ex-fiances.

I laughed so hard at Meghan’s response to landing in a crack house with limited phone options. The scene plays out as genuinely bewildering and it is hilarious. Thankfully, unlike Meghan I could call my mom, explain what happened, and get support, not judgement. But poor Meghan, her only option is to call the man who just dumped her and have him completely fail to help her in any way. Even after a couple of drug dealers yell at him to man up, he responds by telling her not to call him. Interestingly, as their interactions increased, her relationship with the drug dealers reaches a different level of communication and support. A bit over the top, perhaps, the scene left me in stitches.

walk of shame crack house

Kid Pushing

It’s a tiny moment. But when Meghan tries to reason with a kid that she needs to borrow his bike, like most of the people she tried to ask for help, he bargains with her. And it’s for her body. So, she lures him close, pushes his glasses into his face and his butt onto the ground, and takes off on his bike. I laughed my own butt off. Perhaps this was because I dealt with some extremely annoying children at work the other day who broke an apparatus off of a wall, ran around the store despite us workers asking them to stop for their safety and the safety of the other patrons they were running into, and barged into the dressing rooms of other patrons after being asked not to do so. Not once did their parental figure tell them to behave properly and not treat our store like their personal playground. Not once. So seeing an annoying and misbehaving child, get his own. That just made my day.

bike walk of shame

Four Part Douche Test

Once Meghan’s friends realize she never made it home the night before and the only person answering her phone is a charming stranger, they head over to his place to look for clues and to find Meghan to make sure she is OK. When they arrive at Gordon’s house, Denise gives him a test to see what kind of man he is. My friend’s and I used to go through guys wallets. Each group of girls has their own way they sus out the character of a man, this one was pretty funny.  I started giggling just watching the clip again.

Does this movie have a few plot holes? Yes. Many Starbucks are open at 5 in the morning and would let her use their phone. But I’ve also found myself lost in certain areas of a big city that I had never been to before, it is scary, bewildering, and makes good judgement calls harder to hold on to, and I had my cell phone. In spite of more than a few plot holes, the solid acting comedy of this movie makes Walk of Shame a fun and laugh inducing piece of entertainment. But the biggest reason I liked Walk of Shame is that it isn’t about some girl’s walk of shame, it is really about a woman who has an adventure, owns her own story, and walks away from an experience having learned a lesson with a decision to move forward in her life toward that which makes her happy. It’s solid entertainment, and I quite enjoyed the movie.


Movie Review: Her (2013)

One evening while browsing through Netflix suggestions, Chris and I came across a movie with a scifi bent that stars Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, and the voice talent of Scarlett Johansson. While housing some ridiculous moments the concept of the movie and its interesting execution kept us watching until the very end. The message of the movie is that we should all disconnect from our devices for a few moments and connect with the human beings sitting right next to us. Not a bad message, but it unfortunately had a rather on the nose execution. This movie proceeds in exactly the manner you think it will. So, I guess, *spoilers.* But really any kind of summary would lead you to know exactly what is going to happen. There are no major plot twist, and I don’t think there is meant to be one. The movie meanders through emotions and connections, and just kind of wanders off stage with no real great purpose other than to make the viewer think about such emotions and connections and wanderings.

Summary from Wikipedia

In the near future, Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix) is a lonely, introverted man who works for a Los Angeles business that has professional writers compose heartfelt, intimate letters for people who are unwilling or unable to write letters of a personal nature themselves. Unhappy because of his impending divorce from childhood sweetheart Catherine (Rooney Mara), Theodore purchases a talking operating system with artificial intelligence, designed to adapt and evolve. He decides he wants the OS to have a female voice, and she (Scarlett Johansson) names herself “Samantha”. Theodore is fascinated by her ability to learn and grow psychologically. They bond over their discussions about love and life, such as when Theodore explains that he is avoiding signing his divorce papers because of his reluctance to let go of Catherine. Samantha proves to be constantly available, always curious and interested, supportive and undemanding.

her 1

One aspect of this movie that was hard to watch was Joaquin’s mustache. Really. It was distracting and made him look incredibly creepy. Add to this that, the whole movie is about a man who falls in love with his operating system, and the creep factor is intensified. But the oddest moment, one that made Chris and I look at each other and seriously ponder what the heck was going on, was the moment the screen went dark for several seconds as he has phone/operating system sex with his OPERATING SYSTEM! I. Just. What? More than a few odd moments pulled me out of the story on more than one occasion, which was unfortunate, because there were a lot of good and interesting moments as well.

For example, Chris Pratt makes an appearance as a Paul, security guard for the company that Theodore works for. He has some great quips and brings his funny lovable self to the screen. However, his complete acceptance of Theodore’s romantic entanglement with an OS was interesting, he even goes so far as to set up a double date with Theodore, Samantha, and his own real life girlfriend. His girlfriend also accepts Samantha as a person, as she and the OS have a girl on girl conversation while Theodore and Paul go off on a walk during the double date. However much I’m attached to my phone and the android OS, I do not think of it as its own person. Even if it were given a voice and some algorithm capability of learning human behaviors, I just have a hard time grasping the concept of total acceptance of an OS was a being I want to be emotionally attached to.

But the movie did make me think. What makes a connection? Is it necessary the other being have a physical body? I yell at my computer and treat it like a naughty child, is this the first step in an emotional connection with an electronic device. The reason for such a thought provoking reaction was Scarlett Johansson’s voice acting. She did an superb job. Samantha really came to life because of Scarlett Johansson. Her exploration as a algorithm that learns human connections and a way to express them was one of the more interesting things about the movie. Samantha felt like a person that just didn’t have a body. Where I had a hard time was the deep emotional connection that Theodore possessed for her. The leap to fall in love with a being who had no physical presence other than an electronic device was hard for me to comprehend.


A refreshing presence was Amy Adams, who plays Theodore’s neighbor and long time best friend, Amy. Adams grounded what otherwise would have been a movie of just Joaquin walking around talking to himself. Their relationship played as fully real and convincingly long term. Her emotional support of Theodore was sweet especially  after some of the painful scenes with his ex. She was there for Theodore in all of his ups and downs, with his different relationships, even being there for him when his blind date with a live person went horribly wrong. It was a sweet show of unconditional love.

In spite of a few “Merr?” moments, the theme and message behind Her, along with the beautiful execution of the concept make for a compelling movie. The acting of each person attached to it carried the message forward adding gravitas. In spite of a few moments where I barked out a laugh as I realized that the main character was sad because his Operating System had broken up with him, the thought provoking connections in the movie make it stand out as an interesting and beautifully filmed movie. If you have a free evening and want to watch a movie that meanders through several interesting themes and concepts, have a little laugh at some of the ridiculous points it makes, and watch Amy Adams be a bit geeky for more than a few moments, check out Her.

Movie Review: Seeking A Friend for the End of the World

In a month everyone dies. Seeking a Friend for the End of the World stars Steve Carell and Keira Knightly in a indie comedy about an asteroid that is about the destroy the Earth. Nothing much matters any more, and nobody belongs to anyone. But Dodge and Penny decide to help each other finish unfinished business, Dodge is off to find the girl that got away and Penny just wants to find a working plane to get back to her family overseas.

seeking a friend for the end of the world

This movie is a realistic and depressing look at what people will be doing when the world ends. Not fighting zombies, not eking out a coexistence with the Chakz, but trying to find peace in the face of the inevitable. Knightley and Carell are an unlikely match that works well. Their chemistry slowly builds, changes, and makes sense as the story continues. The movie is funny, poignant, and a little sad.

I liked the feel of the movie, that people will be who they have always been. Dodge continues to try and sell insurance to a world that is about to cease its existence and Penny takes back her emotionally abusive boyfriend she doesn’t care about because it’s the familiar. It takes a different kind of connection than an asteroid hitting the earth to shake them up from their routines, it takes a clashing of human connection to force their mindsets to change.

If you don’t mind a little bit of sadness in the midst of a beautiful human connection, watch Seeking a Friend for the End of the World. You may laugh and you will probably cry, but the beauty of the moment will be worth it.

“This is how the world ends, not with a bang, but with a whimper.” T.S. Eliot

Movie Review: World War Z

world war z

I enjoy a good zombie movie every now and then so when I heard World War Z was on the horizon I was curious and with Brad Pitt the lead actor I was more than willing to go and see the movie. I haven’t read the book, but I heard that it wasn’t necessary to enjoy the movie so Chris and I headed to the theater last week on a rainy Friday afternoon.

Brad Pitt plays Gerry Lane who used to work for the U.N. as an investigative journalist (read spy?), in a way it kind of felt like a continuation of his character from Spy Game (which I LOVE!!!). Gerry’s wife didn’t like how dangerous his work was, so when they had kids, she convinced him to give it up. Now he makes breakfast and drives the family to work and school. On the way to their respective places one morning, a zombie plague breaks out and the world goes to hell in a handbasket (I always thought it was HOUND basket fyi, and could never figure out what puppies had to do with hell or a basket. Though handbasket doesn’t make much more sense and Google isn’t particularly enlightening). Miraculously, because of his experience, Gerry gets his family out of harms way and they are rescued by a guy that Gerry used to work for at the U.N. Now Gerry must head out into the zombie infested world to find the point of origin of the infestation to find a cure or his family will be kicked it out of their safe spot aboard an aircraft carrier.

I really liked Pitt’s character, I thought Gerry was smart and courageous and used his intellect to survive. I liked the filming of the movie it was really well done. The pacing was excellent and I bit my knuckles and turned my face into Chris’ shoulder a time or two or five. But on the other hand it felt like the studio had a zombie script lying around and when World War Z (the book) became popular, they dusted it off, changed a few names, and got Brad Pitt to play a pivotal role and were like voila here ez zee movee!  It ez zee book vee svar! Chris read the book and felt like some of the pacing was off and a lot of the events played rather quickly, making it not so much like the book as a just another zombie movie.

I’m also a little tired of drama points in stories which are centered around stupidity. In a real zombie apocalypse the stupid people die. That is all. It is honestly the only reason I kind of hope for such a thing to happen. I liked Gerry because he wasn’t stupid, but he sure was surrounded by stupid. I can set aside my disbelief for one or two plot twist which save the stupid, but not every. single. stupid. time. It was extremely frustrating to me. To top it all off, there were a lot of cliches that happened and when people started talking at the screen I was silently cheering them on, though I generally hate when people talk at the theater.

An interesting zombie movie that takes some concepts from the book and runs around wildly with them, World War Z is entertaining if frustrating film.

Movie Review: The Paperboy

the paperboy

When I tell people about this movie and start out with, it stars Matthew McConaughey, Nicole Kidman, John Cusack, and Zac Efron, they look at me like I am crazy. Well, I’m not the one who cast this movie you all. Sheesh guys. Which is probably a good thing, because though its an odd crew, and a really odd story everyone plays their roles superbly, to my astonishment. John Cusack plays Hillary Van Wetter, an imate on death row who corresponds with Nicole Kidman’s character, Charlotte Bless. She’s determined to get him off of death row, convinced he didn’t kill the sheriff (nor the deputy, sorry, I couldn’t help it!) and she enlists the help of Ward Jansen, played by Matthew McConaughey. Along with his writing partner, they set up an office in Ward’s hometown and hire his younger brother, Jack Jensen (Zac Efron), as their driver while they try to track down witnesses and alibis.

The story is told from the perspective of Anita Chester (Macy Gray) who worked as the Jensen’s housekeeper the summer of ’69 when the events of the story took place. She acts as narrator and assures the people interviewing her that the book they are fact checking is just a story, she knows what really happened. Of course this is from her perspective, and the story becomes more an more ambiguous as her narration is less and less reliable and the characters delve into the crazy and the secrets. Though ostensibly a murder mystery, it is really a coming of age story of Jack’s character who watches the adults in his life spiral downward. He falls in love with Charlotte even though she is clearly more than a little off her rocker (which, to be fair, she never keeps from him) and is in love with one of the creepiest characters I have seen in a long while. Anita acts more as his mother and older sister than she does his family’s housekeeper and the two share a strange relationship as Jack clings to his childish ways, walking around the house in his underwear constantly for example, and Anita pushes him to grow up a bit.

And in one paragraph I’ve explained this movie far more coherently than the movie explains itself. The plot and the people are into utter chaos and movement and feelings, expressions of beliefs, revelations of character, that only really gels at the last moment of screen play. I really liked the chaos of the movie, it felt like we had been thrown into a wild summer, a period of time when the crazy happened to these people, we see them at their worse and their best. We see mutual self masturbation from Kidman and Cusack as their characters meet for the first time. Zac Efron has clothing on far less then the amount of time he spends in  his underwear or swim trunks. McConaghey’s character has some interesting twists and we see him in some compromising situations that seem the less absurd of all of them. Alligators, swamps, and hillbillies with shotguns are integral to the story and add to the strange and wonder that is this movie.

Anthony Qunn in his review writes:

It’s the sort of film if you saw by accident you’d think, “What the —-?”, and perhaps feel a bit disgusted. But you wouldn’t budge from your seat.

He’s right. I watched this movie with Chris over the phone (even though my Netflix kept going out, which was SOOOO annoying) because we saw who was in it and we were intrigued. Neither of us had a clue what the movie was even about or the truly bizarre places it was going to go. Even though seeing Zac Efron walk around in his whitey tighties was a bit uncomfortable, because in my head he’s forever 16 (though in real life he’s a decade older than that) we couldn’t turn away. Not even when Netflix crashed on me at a truly confusing moment in the movie. I just sat there cursing the television screen and screeching about how unfair life was. Damnit! I wanted to watch the train wreck.

Monsters Inc. The College Days

Monsters University makes it to theaters June 21. I, for one, am really excited! I love love love Monsters Inc.! NEED TO SEE THIS! [via]

Movie Review: Safety Not Guaranteed

I’m a huge fan of Parks and Recreation. I love Leslie Knope and her motley crew. I think Amy Poehler is one of the most fantastic persons that exists right now and I want to have her babies (except as she is married and able to have her own, not sure she’ll take me up on that offer). I’m also in love with April, played by Aubrey Plaza. I’ve seen interviews with her and she is one strange duck. I love it! I’m obsessed. (Aubrey is interesting in the next video, the interviewer gets a little creepy. Not gonna lie.)

I’m also in love with Nick from New Girl. I love that character! He’s charming, sensitive, and obtuse all at the same time. Just a really great character! Jake Johnson does such a great job playing this role, I love his chemistry with Zooey Deschnel. And lo, what do I see on Netflix? A movie with two of my favorite actors!

safety not guranteed

Three magazine employees head out on an assignment to interview a guy who placed a classified ad seeking a companion for time travel. (Synopsis from IMD)

Aubrey, who plays Darius, steals the show in this indie comedy flick. She plays an intern to Nick (sorry, that’s who he will always be in my mind, and honestly, his character isn’t that much different) along with the Arnau who is a rather stereotypical plot character for some comedy relief and who comes out of his shell just in time to say a couple of important lines. Nick actually has a decent subplot in this movie too. While he pitches to his boss (whom he slept with) that he wants to go and check out this crazy ad in the newspaper about a time traveler, in reality he wants to go back to the town he spent his summers as a teenager to find a girl he once knew. He does find her, but she’s not a skinny 18 year old any more, and Nick’s journey is one of coming to an understanding of the person he is and whether or not he likes that person.

Mark Duplass is both lead actor, playing Kenneth the time traveler, and he is also a producer of the film. Throughout most of the movie the audience is left to wonder whether or not this guy is for real or just crazy. But that space time traveling stuff isn’t even important. The real story is Darius and Kenneth’s relationship. According to IMDB the movie was written with Aubrey in mind, and it is a beautiful part for her personality, a little dark, clever, and with several moments of vulnerability. Neither Kenneth nor Darius trust other people much, and they spend the film creating a strong bond and learning to care about and rely on another person. I quite enjoyed this sweetly dark and funny film.

Classic Movie Review: Chinatown (1974)


Synopsis from Wikipedia:

A woman identifying herself as Evelyn Mulwray (Ladd) hires private investigator J.J. “Jake” Gittes (Nicholson) to perform surveillance on her husband Hollis I. Mulwray (Zwerling), the chief engineer for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. Gittes tails him, hears him publicly oppose the creation of a new reservoir, and shoots photographs of him with a young woman (Palmer) that are published on the front page of the following day’s paper. Upon his return to his office, Gittes is confronted by a beautiful woman who, after establishing that the two of them have never met, irately informs him she is Evelyn Mulwray (Dunaway) and that he can expect a lawsuit. [Gittes realizes he’s been set up and sets out to investigate what is really going on with this case.]

*It is my belief you can’t “spoil” a movie that is nearly forty years old. But just in case you disagree with me, I’m only slightly vague and end up a little spoilery.

I really like Jack Nicholson in this role. Seeing as he won many awards for his portrayal of the private eye Gittes, this comes as no surprise. I think he slowly built the emotional element to his character which added to the mystery of the story. I like the film noir feel and the crime solving aspect of this movie. I felt like the audience slowly put the pieces together along with Gittes and that we discovered what was really going on as he did. I didn’t figure anything out before he did and that was kind of fun. Perhaps his questioning of Evelyn Mulwray was rather unnecessarily violent, and by perhaps, I mean it was, that poor woman. I understand his frustration at that point, but yah, unnecessary violence on a woman definitely. I think it fits with the era of the piece, but I got a little annoyed. Dunaway does an excellent job as the stressed out Evelyn Mulwray, if a little over dramatic in the way of some film noir.

The father was a creep, in many ways, and I really think he should have died. I’m not sure why he gets to live and gets what he wants. I guess I prefer happy endings, or at least justified endings and that doesn’t happen in this movie. Plus, it’s a little frustrating that the woman who is sexual dies instead. I know the movie is from the early 70’s and set in 1937, but it’s always disappointing to me when storytellers punish the sexual woman. Overall a gripping tale of water rights, family incest, and one man’s quest to discover the truth.