Today:  01/17/2020

Review: 'Brewster's Millions' Collector's Edition is a home run

Posted January 14,2020 - 05:17 PM


When Brewster's Millions came out, I was 11 and it instantly became one of my favorite films of all time. John Candy was my favorite actor at the time and my parents had introduced me to Richard Pryor a couple of years earlier and I was hooked.

What can I say, we were early cable adopters and my parents were very progressive. Either that or they didn't think a little raunchy comedy was bad for the soul. They were right.

What I didn't know at the time is that this version released in 1985 was only the latest adaptation of a novel from George Barr McCutcheon. In fact, I didn't watch the 1945 version until college and I was blown away by the realization. But I really shouldn't have been.

The story of excess and indulgence and the follies that they bring is a timeless tale that is as...

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Review: 'Jexi' is an non-smart comedy film

Posted January 14,2020 - 04:27 PM

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Everyone has a smartphone these days. Technology has gotten us the point that we are pretty much enslaved to the device that is technically called a phone, but people rarely make phone calls on it.

Seen as a satirical take on the wonderful film Her, Jexi proves that perhaps too much technology is a bad thing. In other words, Jexi is the worthless flip phone to Her's latest and greatest technological achievement and it's not even close.

A lovable loser type, played by Adam DeVine, finds that his obsession with his phone is ruining his life, both socially and professionally. When he gets a new phone and opts to turn over his decisions to a badass A.I. life coach, his life is turned upside down, but it comes with a catch. Jexi, the aforementioned A.I., becomes obsessed with her new owner...

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Review: 'Line of Duty' is a tense ride

Posted January 14,2020 - 03:36 PM


There is no shortage of cop films or media is the devil movies these days, but few are able to weave them together as successfully as Line of Duty. While the film is far from perfect, it was a pleasant distraction from the real news of the day with a bit of old-school escapism that just feels right.

Aaron Eckhart plays disgraced cop Frank Penny who is looking to right one of his wrongs and find the kidnapped 11-year-old daughter of the police chief. Unfortunately, his current suspended status requires Frank to partner with a young guerilla journalist to help catch the kidnappers.

What seems like a cross between The Rookie and 24, Line of Duty is able to deftly navigate the trappings of its TV brethren by its relentless pacing and a stand-out performance from Eckhart. It is...

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Review: 'MacGyver' Season 3 hits its stride

Posted January 14,2020 - 01:27 PM


I have to admit. When I'm wrong, I'm wrong.

Long-time fans of the site will recall that I wasn't the biggest fan of MacGyver: Season 1 when it first came out. In fact, I didn't pick it up when it aired and was only exposed to it when I was asked to review the DVD.

Since then, I have become sort of obsessed with the show and it's becoming a regular Friday night watch for my son and me. You see, I was a massive fan of the original series and like most regurgitated things my initial reaction was to reject it. But something interesting happened when I watched that DVD, my son started to show an interest in the show.

As any parent can tell you, it is a major victory when you can find something that creates mutual interest between you and your children. This is becoming increasingly more...

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Review: 'Krypton' goes with a bang and a whimper

Posted January 14,2020 - 11:17 AM


Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this news story. The opinions I share are my own.

You know the old Neil Young lyric. "It's better to burn out than to fade away."

The gist of it is that it's better to live life to its fullest and die young than to live long and become irrelevant. At least that's how rock stars interpret it and their high mortality rate at a young age would seem to augment their reasoning. Of course, perhaps ironically, Niel Young is 74 years old, but no one would ever claim that he was irrelevant.

Ever since the debut of serialized TV, the same sort of adage has also been debated in network circles. Is it better for a TV series to be contained to a small number of episodes or to let it run its course aimlessly...

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Review: 'The Lighthouse' is a welcoming beacon in a sea of madness

Posted January 07,2020 - 05:24 PM

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If you've never seen Robert Eggers's debut film The Witch, then you must do yourself a favor right now and seek it out. It is without a doubt my favorite horror film of the last decade and it created an indie star out of Robert Eggers.

So, it was with a bit of trepidation that I allowed my expectations to rise for his sophomore effort The Lighthouse as the positive reviews started to pour in. Would Eggers be one of those rare unicorns that is immune from the sophomore slump? I'm happy to report that he is one indeed.

In The Lighthouse, two lighthouse keepers are stranded on a remote and mysterious New England island in the 1890s during a massive storm. With the storm exasperating their severe cabin fever, the two men begin to think that the other has become dangerously unmoored.


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Review: 'Big Little Lies' has a big aftermath in season two

Posted January 07,2020 - 04:35 PM


Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the DVD I reviewed in this news story. The opinions I share are my own.

I'm sure HBO would be the first to tell you that I'm not the target demo of their highly successful show Big Little Lies, but I like to defy expectations. As a fan of the book, my wife was elated to see a tremendous cast bring it life on HBO and I tagged along for the ride during Season One and I was instantly hooked.

Not only were the Monterey Five women well written, but their male counterparts were given meaty roles of their own. In particular, I was impressed with the job Adam Scott did with his thankless role as Madeline's walk-over husband. Of course, the big question after the credits to Season One ended is where they would take the story in...

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Review: Nic Cage goes 'Primal' in latest video effort

Posted January 06,2020 - 03:51 PM


If you're a fan of Nic Cage and his certain brand of Cage craziness, then Primal will help you scratch your bizarre itch. Interestingly, the best Cage performance in Primal doesn't come from the man himself.

No, instead Nic Cage is uncharacteristically restrained in his role as a former zookeeper who turns to illegal animal smuggling to make ends meet. When he finally bags his white whale, er jaguar, his huge payday is jeopardized when U.S. Marshals secretly attempt to extradite an assassin to the United States aboard the same cargo ship.

The assassin in question is played brilliantly by the criminally underrated Kevin Durand. He seems to be the only one that realizes that he's in a Nic Cage film and he ramps up his craziness to the appropriate level. The result is an antagonist that...

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Review: Renee Zellweger steals the show in 'Judy'

Posted December 23,2019 - 03:22 PM

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Despite portraying legendary singer and actress Judy Garland in the biopic Judy, Renee Zellweger is nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Drama and not in a Musical/Comedy. Don't get me wrong, she's incredibly deserving of the nomination, but as I'm willing to bet that she sings just as many words as speaks, it's another one of those Golden Globe head-scratchers.

No matter what the category, Renee Zellweger delivers a career-defining performance as the child actress turned entertainer. Based on the successful Broadway play "End of the Rainbow," Judy sheds light on Judy Garland's final years while flashing back to the high and low points of her illustrious career.

I have to admit that most of my experience with Judy Garland came from her iconic performance at...

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Review: 'The Kill Team' bloodies the line between right and wrong

Posted December 23,2019 - 11:18 AM

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War is ugly. War is brutal savagery. And War results in untold casualties on both sides of any conflict. The wounds inflicted in combat include both the finite in terms of death and the infinite in terms of mental anguish for those affected by the events they witness.

Back in 2013, I watched a horrific documentary called Kill Team about a platoon of soldiers over in Afghanistan who crossed the line and murdered innocent civilians. As terrifying as the events of the movie were, it really forced me to ask the difficult questions. Does growing up in a world of non-stop toxic violence with instant access to tomes on the brutality of war such as Full Metal Jacket and Platoon create a never-ending spiral of violence? Or are some people just predisposed to a violent nature that gets...

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