War Dogs (2016) Film Review

David (Miles Teller) is a college dropout who is working as a masseuse and trying to find his way in the world when he comes across an old school friend, Efraim (Jonah Hill). Efraim is a success, supplying the US military with minor items for a huge profit. They start working together and things get out of hand.

A lot happens in this film, and yet I kind of felt that it didn’t really get started, and when it ended, I felt like the story had not run its course. I have been going over and over this trying to figure out why, and just cannot quite put my finger on it. All I can say is that despite being almost two hours, I felt that I wanted more.

War Dogs was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy (Jonah Hill).

The Watch (2012) Film Review

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Evan (Ben Stiller) is an uptight guy living an ideal life in the nice suburbs when one of his employees is killed during the night shift. So he starts a Neighbourhood Watch group. Cue: a bunch of misfits: Bob (Vince Vaughan) an overprotective father whose wife is travelling for work a lot, Franklin (Jonah Hill) a high school drop out and Jamarcus (Richard Ayoade) an odd Englishman. In searching for the killer, they come across aliens and sex parties and all kinds of strange stuff.

This film is both terrible and nowhere near as terrible as I expected it to be. The whole alien thing seemed to be totally ridiculous, but I actually quite liked where they went with it. However, I was totally distracted most of the way by Ben Stiller’s extreme tan. Yes, he was the leader of the running club, but there seems to be way too much colour on that man’s face.

 

22 Jump Street (2014) Film Review

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Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) are back. Not being sent into High School this time, but instead to College. And apart from that, everything’s the same. Or is it? No, not really. Then watch just under two hours of self-referential gags about sequels and themselves. And have a few laughs.

It’s not bad. About as good as the first, which was a lot better than I’d have thought it was going to be, but not amazing. It’s clearly a film that they had a lot of fun making, and that made it a lot of fun for me to watch, but I’m certainly not overly keen on seeing it again. But if you do watch it, stick around for the closing title sequence. It’s fun.

 

Megamind (2010) Film Review

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After his world was destroyed, an alien was sent to Earth. Just like Superman. Only, not unlike Superman, there were two babies. Megamind (Will Ferrell) a blue creature who just cannot quite get it right, and Metro Man (Brad Pitt), a real Superman type. As children, Metro Man always won over Megamind, and Megamind decides, along with Minion (David Cross), he decides to be a real villain. He falls into a routine with Metro Man – he kidnaps Roxanne Ritchie (Tina Fey), Metro Man saves her and they go on. But one day, he kills Metro Man, and their world is turned upside down. Depressed, Megamind realises he needs a foe to continue, and he makes Titan (Jonah Hill), the hero. But nothing goes quite as expected.

It is a fun film, but it was only when I got about three-quarters of the way through when I realised that I had seen it before, so it clearly did stick in my mind. Good points? David Cross is fabulous as Minion, the strange fish companion. The character of Roxanne is being saved a lot, but there is a lot more to her. She still is the only significant female character, which is a shame. And I love that Megamind mispronounces everything.

 

How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014) Film Review

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After Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) found a way for his people to become friends with dragons in How to Train Your Dragon, he spends a lot of time with Toothless investigating the wider world. And then he discovers that not everyone in the wider world is nice. And there are a whole bunch of battles and fights, and not everyone survives.

Made me laugh, made me cry. And I think was a pretty top sequel to the first one. And there are a few decent female characters – sure one chick is totally boy crazy, but she also kicks arse somewhat.

How to Train Your Dragon 2 was nominated for an Oscar for Best Animated Feature of the Year and won a Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature Film.

 

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!

 

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.

Knocked Up (2007) Film Review

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Alison (Katherine Heigl) takes her sister Debbie (Leslie Mann) out partying to celebrate her new onscreen role on a television entertainment show. He meets Ben (Seth Rogan) who is out partying with his stoner friends. They spend the night together and then, a few weeks later, she discovers that she is pregnant. The film takes them through the discovery and up to the birth with them trying to form a relationship with each other and prepare for a baby.

It’s pretty average. There are certainly fun moments, but there seemed to be no reason for it to go on the way it did. I could not figure out why on earth they would pursue a relationship given how much they really didn’t get along. But luckily, it seemed that having the baby meant they will have a happy life. Whatever.

How to Train Your Dragon (2010) Film Review

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Hiccup is not like all the other Vikings. They are brave and strong and big. He’s small, but wants to be a part of killing the dragons as much as the next kid, and has an invention that could work. Unfortunately, when it takes down one of the never-seen species, it causes a lot of damage and he is shunned. When he finds the injured dragon, he quickly realises that he can train it, and starts to learn a lot more about dragons that anyone previously This knowledge helps him during his dragon killing class, and may change things for his town forever.

Fun. Very nice to look at. A very male-centric film – why are there two girls in the six member killing dragon class and yet almost no other female characters as all? Sheesh. No wonder Brave got so much of an exciting reaction. There’s a sequel coming out this year. Hope I can borrow some children and see it at the cinema.

How to Train Your Dragon was nominated for Oscars for Best Animated Feature Film of the Year and Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score.

21 Jump Street (2012) Film Review

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Two young and hopeless cops get assigned to the Jump Street department that send cops undercover into schools. Trying to bust a drug ring, geeky Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and jock Kenko (Channing Tatum) find themselves getting in too deep and having to go to ridiculous lengths to get the job down.

I accidentally saw half of this (the second half) a while ago and thought it looked terrible. It doesn’t help that I grew up on the original television show with Johnny Depp and was suspicious that this film would ruin the integrity of the original. Even having recently watched the original and realised that what I thought was brilliant television was actually pretty average. And even with a brief cameo from Johnny and his mate Peter DeLuise, I couldn’t bear giving it another try.

How wrong I was! This is a really fun film. Stupid, ridiculous and unbelievable, but also totally aware of this. There were elements of this that reminded me of The Heat with Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy – silly action, hilarious banter, just good old fun times.