Jumper (2008) Film Review

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At fifteen, David Rice (played by Max Thieriot as a young boy, Hayden Christensen for the rest of the film) discovered that he could teleport. As a young adult, he has found a way to live this life, going where he wants, doing what he wants. Until he is tracked down by Roland (Samuel L. Jackson), a man who follows “jumpers” like him and kill them. Why? Religion.

David is a really annoying character – arrogant, smarmy and generally quite crap and annoying. I found I couldn’t care less about him – in fact, I was quite keen for Roland to knock him off sooner rather than later. Made it difficult to care about the film at all. Overall, this feeling didn’t change. But there is an extra in one scene who keeps looking at the camera – it’s quite weird, really – quite funny, and totally made the film for me.

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Never Been Kissed (1999) Film Review

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Josie Gellar (Drew Barrymore) works at a newspaper as a fact checker-type person, but dreams of being a journalist. She is sent into a school by her boss Gus (John C. Reilly) to compile an investigative report into kids of today, however, she gets caught up in life and trying to be cool. She’s helped by her idiot brother Rob (David Arquette) who uses this as a chance to relive his cool past. And then there is the dreamy teacher, Sam Coulson (Michael Vartan).

And here’s where I have a real issue. I just have a problem with teacher/student love affairs. Regardless of who starts it or how successful that relationship may go on to be, it still starts with an older person in position of trust who, in today’s society and with today’s values, needs to be better. So, the fact that Sam in this case did not actually act on his feelings, he believed her to be a minor and he overstepped the line a few times. And no-one found this a bit creepy?

I really wanted to like this film, I just couldn’t get past the creep factor. And there was a bit too much suspension of belief for me.

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This Is the End (2013) Film Review

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It’s a celebrity party at James Franco’s house and everyone is famous and beautiful. There’s drink and drugs and ridiculous singalongs, and what more could you want? Oh, how about The Rapture, The End of Days, Apocalypse? Yup, all the good people have been taken, yet none of the celebrities at the party have gone. And then things get nasty.

I thought this film would be pretty rubbishy, with a few laughs and a lot of groans. And it was, but it was awesome! Dumb, stupid, ridiculous, and extremely funny. Ha!

 

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The LEGO Movie (2014) Film Review

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There’s a bad guy, Lord Business (Will Ferrell) who is trying to destroy the ordered Lego world where ordinary guy Emmett (Chris Pratt) lives, and he must step up to save it. Oh, and they are all made of Lego.

It’s full of cameo voice roles, great gags, pop culture references and yet I just didn’t like it that much. Perhaps it was too much of a build up. I don’t know. All I know is thank goodness for Will Arnett, because his Batman totally saved it for me. Perhaps finally I have outgrown kids films? I doubt it.

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Sunshine Cleaning (2008) Film Review

Film Title: Sunshine Cleaning

Two sisters, neither particularly good at being employed and keeping financially safe, start a business cleaning up crime scenes.

I really wanted to like this; Amy Adams, Emily Blunt, Alan Arkin, wow, what a cast. But it just annoyed me, watching people who are hopeless at doing what they are doing. Of course it was going to end in disaster. And because it was so obvious that things would have to go wrong, I could not get myself attached to the characters.

 

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Dodgeball : A True Underdog Story (2004) Film Review

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Geez, isn’t Peter La Fleur (Vince Vaughn) a top bloke? He runs a gym for a bunch of losers and doesn’t even charge them, has no ambition and just lives for, I don’t really know. Fun? He has sex with ladies, but other than that, he doesn’t seem to have any interest in anything ever. Then there is White Goodman (Ben Stiller), a man so stupid he cannot spell his own name, who was incredibly obese and disgusting (eating food semi naked and letting it drip all over his fat chest and belly), but who lost weight and became obsessed with looking good and bullying others into looking good at his gym. Wow, what a prick, having drive to succeed and achieve. So then, as revenge on Peter for having sex with a couple of White’s sexy trainers, White takes out a mortgage on Peter’s gym (is that legal?) and when Peter is going to default, the only possibility is to raise money, and they only way they can do that is a dodge ball contest. Of course.

I didn’t realise until I started writing the above quite how much I disliked the premise for this film. I’ve mentioned before that I am often disappointed by Vince Vaughn, and he’s fine in this, just quite boring. Not offensive, just boring. Ben Stiller is a bit the same for me – I can absolutely hate him in some things, and love him in others. This is a hate for me – there was not enough comedy in his White Goodman, he was just nasty and self-obsessed and pretty crap.

Having said all that, I really liked the dodge ball tournament side of things – ridiculous, and with wonderful commentary from the ever fabulous Gary Cole and Jason Bateman. It is almost worth watching just for the commentary. Not quite, but almost.

 

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Tomorrow, When the War Began (2010) Film Review

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Based on the first novel of a hugely compelling and successful series from John Marsden, Tomorrow When the War Began tells of a group of teenagers in outback Australia who come back from a weekend camping in a remote site to find the country has been invaded and their friends and families are all prisoners of war. Once they establish this, they decide they need to fight back.

This needs to be a television series. It is so good; yes, it would have been great it this film had made enough to have kept going, to have made sequels. But it’s the wrong format – there is just too much in the story, too much in the books to go into a feature film. But this film gives a really strong sense of how good it could be.

 

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