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  • Southpaw

    Southpaw 2015

    ★★★½ Watched 03 Aug, 2015

    Like Sons of Anarchy, the Kurt Sutter written Southpaw is another extremely melodramatic story about a "badass" who just can't seem to stop screwing up. While Sons of Anarchy lost my attention (and my viewership) somewhere in the middle, when I realized that the melodrama had crossed a Douglas Sirk meets All My Children threshold, Southpaw had me the entire time.

    Billy Hope is a champion boxer who lives in a mansion with his wife (Rachel McAdams) and daughter Layla…

  • The Color of Money

    The Color of Money 1986

    ★★★★ Watched 03 Aug, 2015

    Though the Color of Money is correctly seen as inferior to The Hustler, it shouldn't be written off. Cruise is outstanding as the impossibly energetic Vince and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio shines as his smart and seductive girlfriend, Carmen. Still, it's Newman's movie and he owns it.

    Scorsese is very respectful of the Hustler but not afraid to put his own stamp on the film (admittedly, though, he doesn't allow quite enough of his own style to be injected into the picture).

  • Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation

    Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation 2015

    ★★★★½ Watched 31 Jul, 2015

    So Christopher McQuarrie is the real deal, huh? Not only has he written some truly outstanding genre films (Usual Suspects, Way of the Gun), but he has suddenly made a name for himself as a phenomenal action director with Jack Reacher and Rogue Nation.

    This time around we follow Hunt (Cruise), once again on the run from his own country and a few others. With the help of his go-to agents (Pegg, Rhames, and Renner) as well as a sexy…

  • Vacation

    Vacation 2015

    ★★★ Watched 30 Jul, 2015 3

    Unfortunately Vacation is ironically inferior to We're the Millers (which was already the Vacation reboot that no one asked for). You can also add it to the list of funny-but-forgettable comedies. Somehow, though, Vacation managed not to completely alienate me and forced more than a few laughs out of me, despite being pretty awful as far as plot goes.

    The cast is actually dead-on, especially Helms whose particular brand of awkwardness is as good as that type of humor (which…

  • Ant-Man

    Ant-Man 2015

    ★★★½ Watched 30 Jul, 2015

    If Ant-Man had come out directly after, say, the first Captain America, it would have made a much bigger splash as far as these comic books movies go. Unfortunately, we've been spoiled, especially by Guardians of the Galaxy, which is probably closest to Ant-Man tonally. Still, this is an entertaining comic book movie that benefits from being a one hero picture.

    The scope is extraordinary and size and space seem to be perfectly explored in a number of scenes. I…

  • Mission: Impossible II

    Mission: Impossible II 2000

    ★★★½ Watched 29 Jul, 2015 3

    I'm really watching these in the worst order ever. Before starting to make my rounds the other day, I had seen the first and second MI movies as a kid (barely remembering any of them) and Ghost Protocol in theaters. So, revisiting the series now, it just made the most sense to watch them in the order of 3, 2, 1, 4, and then 5 this weekend.

    Well, after watching the disappointingly Hoffman/Monaghan-light third one, MI 2 was refreshingly simple…

  • Roberta

    Roberta 1935

    ★★ Watched 26 Jul, 2015

    Whenever Fred Astaire and/or Ginger Rogers are missing from the screen, this is a horrible mess of a movie. Still, I would almost recommend it for the final Rogers Astaire number. Almost.

  • The Hustler

    The Hustler 1961

    ★★★★½ Watched 25 Jul, 2015 3

    The Hustler has one of the best (and supposedly first) pre-credits scenes I have ever seen. Few scenes throughout the film can match it in terms of its uniqueness, but plenty come close, as the Oscar-winning cinematography, great cast, and actor-played pool games make for one helluva picture.

  • Cannibal Holocaust

    Cannibal Holocaust 1980

    ★★★★ Rewatched 25 Jul, 2015

    Deodato has done something extremely important with Cannibal Holocaust. He has created a film so controversial that even he questions whether or not it was even worth creating. The stars question whether or not it was worth making. The critics and audiences question whether or not it was worth making. That, in and of itself, is proof that it SHOULD exist.

    Sure, there is a ton of animal "cruelty" (the kills are quick and the animals were all eaten by…

  • Road House

    Road House 1989

    ★★★½ Watched 23 Jul, 2015

    Pretty horrible. Immensely entertaining.

  • Mission: Impossible III

    Mission: Impossible III 2006

    ★★½ Watched 18 Jul, 2015

    Abrams' style is perfect for this type of movie (as evidenced by everything else he's done) and Cruise is explosive as ever. Unfortunately the story is surprisingly boring and the stakes feel much lower than they should. Monaghan and Hoffman (two of my all-time favorites) are severely underused.

    Perhaps it's because I had already seen Ghost Protocol, but MI III was a huge letdown. Is it my fault for watching them out of order? I doubt it.

  • Trainwreck

    Trainwreck 2015

    ★★★ Watched 17 Jul, 2015

    Trainwreck is yet another Judd Apatow comedy that is way too long. However, and maybe this is because he didn't write it, unlike his other movies it doesn't start out hilarious and then slowly get less and less funny. Trainwreck took about fifteen minutes to get me and, once it did, I was completely hooked. This is because of the amazing supporting cast, full of both comedy go-tos like Colin Quinn and Dave Attell and surprisingly hilarious non-comics like LeBron…