Tuesday, January 14, 2014

movies of 2013... almost the best

So, there's the worst movies of the year... then there are the movies that were somewhere in the middle... now, in what's becoming a four part 2013 movie reflection (ReFlicktion?!), here are the movies that were good.. maybe really good... but just noooooot quite good enough to break my Top 10 of 2013...

And this is in no particular order...

This is the End (2013)... Raunchy yet hilarious, the ensemble cast of Seth Rogan, James Franco, Jonah Hill, Danny McBride, Craig Robinson and Jay Barachel--if you don't know all of the names, if you saw the faces, you'd recognize them from "that movie..." Kudos to Michael Cera and Emma Watson for two unbelievably hysterical cameos.

Now You See Me (2013)... Really clever premise with Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher and Dave Franco (James' little brother) as magicians hired to perform a few heists. Becomes a bit too unbelievable towards the end, but a strong cast includes Mark Ruffalo and Morgan Freeman.

We're the Millers (2013)... Jason Sudeikis is a small time weed dealer who is stuck owing lots of money to corporate suit Ed Helms, and agrees to smuggle a huge amount of weed from Mexico to the US, and hires on a "family" to make it look more legit. Its really funny is a wrong, Hangover sort of way, but one main reason to see this film is to really see how good of an actress Jennifer Aniston has become.

Iron Man 3 (2013)... Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr) is having an identity crisis, at the same time another global madman (this time portrayed by Ben Kingsley) is set on world destruction. A solid, fun twist in the middle gives this film some real life, as does an excellent turn by Kingsley as The Manderin. Gwyneth Paltrow and Don Cheadle are also very likable, and Guy Pearce is a good bad guy too.

Melanie playing a chick who is just losing at life
Hello, I Must Be Going (2013)...  I do love movies with a little quirk to them... add to the fact I'm a fan of Melanie Lynskey, and you have this movie.  She's a character actress who you would know from "Up in the Air" as George Clooney's sister, or Reese Witherspoon's hometown BFF in "Sweet Home Alabama" (she's the one with the "baby... in a bar..").  Anyway, she's a 30 something woman who is divorced, at her parents house, life going nowhere, and she develops a crush on a much, much younger dude.  Its a sweet story, I promise.

Seven Psychopaths (2012)... An all awesome, all star cast with Sam Rockwell, Woody Harrelson, Christopher Walken, Tom Waits and Colin Farrell in the lead tells this hilarious, violent tale of mobsters, gangsters, a screenwriter at the wrong place at the wrong time, and a kidnapped Shit Tzu.  I laughed alot, and enjoyed it throughout. 

The Longest Yard (1974)... Lest you think this is the tripe from a few years back with Adam Sandler, I say nay.  Oh, nay nay.  This is the 70s original, with Burt Reynolds, teaming up with some rough prisoners to form a football squad to take on the prison guards with a sadistic warden, played to the hilt by Eddie Albert.  I actually haven't seen the updated version, so I don't know how it compares, but I really liked this one.

The Magnificent Seven (1960)... Based on the Japanese masterpiece "The Seven Samarai", this one takes the story to the old west, where a poor Mexican village hires Yul Brenner to help defend them from a jerkface (Eli Wallach) who comes in to steal, pillage and plunder several times per year.  The cast is strong, with Charles Bronson, Steve McQueen, James Coburn and Robert Vaughn making up some of the Seven, and many scenes mirror the Japanese original exactly, sometimes word for word.  Great story, though a little long.

Seven Samurai (1960)... Speaking of which, I watched this one right before the Seven above, and I'm glad I did.  Though I don't usually get too enthralled with any movie featuring subtitles, I did like this alot. I can see the influence of this film on modern directors, especially Tarantino.  It is one that I probably won't watch again, but as a moviephile, am very, very glad I watched this time. 

Cabin in the Woods (2012)... From my review: "If you like suspense and scary type of films, but want something different, then check this flick out. There is a needless boobie scene in the middle, and lots of language... plus slasher violence, so get ready for that."  I thought it was creative, and the Bradley Whitford/JK Simmons scenes are funny and out of nowhere.

For me, its Amy Adams.  For all y'all, its Timberlake. Everyone wins.
Premium Rush (2012)... Perhaps the greatest bike messenger movie of all time... from my review... Joseph Gordon-Levitt is fun, Michael Shannon is a perfect creep, and the supporting cast is likable enough to keep the film going. Again, the plot is a bit far fetched, especially when you actually learn the contents of the bag, but still... check it out. PG-13 for language."

Trouble with the Curve (2012)... From my review: "It's pretty good. Slow at times, but the story in engaging, and having a grizzly Clint Eastwood, a really good Timberlake and Amy Adams, whom I'm in love with, on screen doesn't hurt."

Dredd (2012)... Great action flick. A billion times better than that Sly Stallone crap from the 90s. Violent, language, but well shot and lots of fun.  Its cool watching someone as lovely as Lena Headley play the villian, and I love the fact that Dredd never takes off his mask.  (I'm not alone in this either... its got a 7.1 on IMDb, while the Sly version is only at 5.3)

Here Comes the Boom (2012)... From my review... "DO watch this movie. Seriously. This movie is fantastic. Well, I say that being a Kevin James fan... yes, he's kinda dopey, and yes, his movies won't win any awards ("Zookeeper"? Its awful. But awesome. And I love it), but this is a delightfully fun story." (by the way, I still mean what I wrote then)

Blackfish (2012)... So, CNN picked up and showed this documentary essentially excoriating Sea World and their practices of animal captivity.  The main focus is on a killer whale named Tillicum, who was directly involved with the deaths of at least two trainers while in a show... its fascinating, its enthralling, and its almost upsetting, especially when former Sea World workers are on camera blasting the park and how it does business...

This movie would have made my Top Ten, except, like many documentaries, its stylish and well done, but much of it may or may not be exaggerated... or even false.  Many of the trainers that spoke up have come forward to say they were misrepresented (though when someone says something like "The way Sea World treats these animals is just criminal... if I had known it would be like this, I would have never gone to work there", I'm not sure how that's said misrepresented), so the truth lies somewhere in the middle.  I encourage all to watch it--but take it with a grain of salt.

So there we go... that's Part 3 of 2013 movie... coming up, finally... my favorite movies of 2013.  And because I'm awesome and so generous, you won't get a Top Ten... you will get TWO Top Tens... My 10 favorite films of 2013 that I saw in 2013... and my 10 favorite films that came out before 2013 that I saw in 2013... wait, did that make sense? 

(12,436 words written, 7564 words to go in #500Words Challenge / #20KWordsInJanuary)

No comments:

Post a Comment

I want to hear your response! Click here!!