Showing posts with label Comedy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Comedy. Show all posts

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Last Vegas Movie Review

Movie review, rating, trailer and photo of Last Vegas starring Freeman, Kline, De Niro and Douglas.

Director: John Turteltaub

First Release Date: 31st October 2013 (Hungary)

Running Time: 105 minutes 

Starring: Morgan Freeman, Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Kevin Kline

"Last Vegas" brings together a well renowned cast to provide an entertaining and fun movie.  Some have claimed the movie is similar to "The Hangover" (2009) with an older cast yet "Last Vegas" proves to be something different altogether.  A warm feeling film and definitely a pleasure to watch, "Last Vegas" is directed by John Tuteltaub and features Morgan Freeman, Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro and Kevin Kline. 

Billy (Douglas), Paddy (De Niro), Archie (Freeman) and Sam (Kline) have been friends since they were kids but now they are all old.  Archie, recently suffered a stroke and now cannot do anything due to his over protective son. Sam is bored of the Florida lifestyle and his marriage.  Paddy has become a recluse since the loss of his wife and Billy has never grown up.  He is about to marry a women younger than half of his age and tries to get his friend back together for a bachelor party in Las Vegas where these 'old-timers' show they still have got it.

Last Vegas movie review

 "Last Vegas" gives the audience a simple and easy to follow story line filled with comedy that is effortless and enjoyable. The film is rarely crude in its humour and even though it features some immaturity, overall it is a good movie experience. It offers good comedy from those involved who look like they are just making a movie and having a good time.  The storyline is honest but it keeps it fun.  We will all grow old one day and feel how the characters do in the film but as the message throughout portrays - it does not mean you have to stop enjoying yourself and that is a great message to take from the film. 

The film features a great cast of well known actors and it really is great to see them together in a film that is light-hearted and one that is not taken too seriously. You normally would see these actors as the stand alone star in their own film but by bringing them together you get a great mix.  For example putting De Niro's tough guy persona next to a more laid back and friendly personality of Freeman works incredibly well on the big screen. The interaction between the actors, the characters they portray and the setting of Vegas pays dividends for a film that had its doubters beforehand.

"Last Vegas" is a pleasantly enjoyable film for those who watch it. The script and story are easy to follow and the film is engaging enough for it to be a success. It is not the greatest comedy by a long shot, but it is excellent to see four actors show that they can still surprise the audience with their films and acting skills. It is very laid back and is a great film to watch on days where you are looking to kick back and relax.  

M+F Rating: 7/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Almost Married Movie Review

Movie review of Almost Married starring Phillip McGinley and Emily Atack

Director: Ben Cookson

First Release Date: 28th March 2014 (UK)

Running Time: 97 minutes 

Starring: Philip McGinley, Emily Atack, Bill Fellows, Mark Stobbart, Lynne Wilmot

"Almost Married" is a British comedy written and directed by Ben Cookson who spent three years on the film.  The comedy in the movie is very sex orientated and the film can be described as a grown up "The Inbetweeners Movie" (2011) meets a British "The Hangover" (2009) movie. This film has the ground work to be a real surprise but ultimately falls short only providing some comedy in awkward sex related dialogue. 

Kyle (Philip McGinley) is soon to be married with his fiance Lydia (Emily Atack).  However, after a wild stag-do  with his best friend Jarvis (Mark Stobbart), it becomes apparent that he has contracted a sexually transmitted disease. Adamant that he was unfaithful, Kyle has to do what he can to try and avoid being intimate with his fiance for three months; which includes his wedding night without letting on about his secret. 

The story for the film is typical of a comedy of this nature.  It is set up in a very familiar way and plays it safe in doing so.  A few flashes of nudity and 'banter' between the two main characters provide the comedy moments in the film and much of this is gritty.  Throughout there is a shady feel to the film from the over-the-top and unnecessary sexual puns, references and innuendos. The story of the film is nearly executed very well.  It has the base story line for a for a decent comedy film - however, it is unable to achieve this and stumbles in trying to do so. 

Movie review of Almost Married.

Overall the cast give okay performances.  The best parts of the film is when the majority of the characters come together for group scenes. The parents of both of the characters provide a different source of comedy which is more relateable to most of the audience compared to the failed humour that bounces around the main three characters. The introduction to the older characters bring stability to the film and storyline and it is unfortunate they did not feature more.  Kyle and Lydia's fathers, played by Smug Roberts and Bill Fellows respectively, give the best performances out of those involved despite there short screen time.

"Almost Married" gets caught in using the cheap comedy that its topic revolves around. It relies heavily on this content to provide the funnier moments of the film rather than the character interactions and dialect.  Despite this, there are parts of the film that will have you laughing and the film is able to keep some plot twists from becoming obvious.  If you are a fan of "The Inbetweeners" then this comedy is definitely one for you with similar humour.  No real attachment can be made from the audience to the film and throughout the majority of the movie you will question many aspects; as it does not feel quite right. The comedy being used, does not match up with the characters.  It gives the film more of a sense of immaturity.  Sure, some scenes will make you laugh, but it will be short lived and at the end you will feel rather unsatisfied. 

M+F Rating: 4/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Friday, 21 March 2014

Delivery Man Movie Review

Movie review of Delivery Man starring Vince Vaughan directed by Ken Scott

Director: Ken Scott

UK Release Date:10th January 2014

Running Time: 105 minutes 

Starring: Vince Vaughan, Cobie Smulders, Chris Pratt

"Delivery Man" is a movie billed as a comedy that doesn't turn out to be that funny. However, it is far from a bad film. Based on a Canadian French film called "Starbuck" (2011), Delivery Man stars Vince Vaughan in the title role, backed up by Chris Pratt and Cobie Smulders. 

David also known as "Starbuck" (2011) is a delivery man for his family run meat business. He is lazy, untrustworthy and a liability.  While trying to sort his life out he finds out that he is the father to over 500 children through a mistake that was made at the fertility clinic he provided for in his early twenties. He faces the task of remaining anonymous while his biological children hunt to find out who their real father is. 

The storyline for the film already sounds quite 'out-there' and maybe that's why the film abandons some of the usual 'in your face' comedy. The lack of comedy is by no means a complaint. It enables the film to move forward on another more emotional front. By allowing this the movie feels more realistic and more raw emotions can be seen which are generally lost in a usual comedy. 

Delivery Man movie review, trailer, rating and photos

Vaughan plays a slightly different character than what we see normally. This again is linked in with the lack of comedy provided in "Delivery Man". He is more serious and provides an easy to watch pleasant performance. Pratt and Smulders are unable to add much to the film which is unfortunate especially due to the latters performance in television hit "How I Met Your Mother (2005 - Current).  The problem faced for both is lack of quality screen time. The film is based around Vaughan's character and with 500+ children, screen time is limited. 

"Delivery Man" does lack a certain quality to push it to the next level.  With a lack of comedy it does not push through the serious aspect enough and the emotional connection with the audience is then limited.  This is unfortunate - the film remains at the same pace throughout and does not take advantage of the opportunity it has.  It is a good film but does not push areas of the film enough so it feels flat. 

"Delivery Man" is a surprising film.  It is not what you come to expect from a Vince Vaughan film and typically is better.  It is easy to follow and is a film that will make you feel good by the end. However, you will feel a bit disappointed as the movie does not excel really in anyway.  The storyline is different to other films however if you have seen "Starbuck" then apparently you will be in for a film that you have seen before. Other critics have displayed concerns over the movie following the exact same storyline scene for scene. Despite this, you will enjoy the film for what it is even though it will never be a huge blockbuster.

M+F Rating: 6/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

50/50 Movie Review

50/50 Movie Review starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Seth Rogen

Director: Jonathan Levine 

UK Release Date: 25th November 2011

Running Time: 100 minutes

Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Anna Kendrick, Seth Rogen, Bryce Dallas-Howard, Phillip Baker Hall

Originally put off by the concept of "50/50", it pleasantly surprised and impressed with its humble and respectful nature.  The comedy and drama based on a difficult topic is portrayed in a way that is effortless and appreciates the tough nature of the topic.  Jonathan Levine directs a brilliantly moving film that is both engaging and touching. 

"50/50" is based loosely on a true story.  Adam (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is diagnosed with a rare form of cancer when he is 27 years old and this leaves him with a 50% chance of living.  With support from his best friend Kyle (Seth Rogen) and his support therapist, Katherine (Anna Kendrick) Adam tries to come to terms with his illness and make sense of his life.  The film also takes into consideration the effect his illness has on others in his life, including his girlfriend Rachael (Bryce Dallas-Howard) and his mother Diana (Anjelica Huston). 

50/50 movie review, rating, trailer and photos

Considering the sensitive topic the film consists of, "50/50" is a really great film.  The script hits the perfect balance between comedy and drama with characters that are excellent for the storyline.  Gordon-Levitt, Rogen and Kendrick bring the film up a notch from being your average sort of comedy.  In ways it is similar to "Silver Linings Playbook" (2012), in that it is a comedy centered around a more serious topic rather than just a comedy aiming to be silly and achieve cheap laughs.   This really works for the movie and is backed up by the performances of the actors involved.

A lot of the credit has to go down to Gordon-Levitt who gives one of the best performances of his career. He really was able to take on the character and was believable throughout.  He was perfect for the role as he has achieved success in character roles that are both dramatic and comical making him ready for this type of role.  In more of a supporting role, both Rogen and Kendrick offer innocence, honesty and the more comical parts of the film.  Rogen's character, Kyle, is very 'Rogen' but is scaled back slightly to fit in line with the film. As the movie goes on, you can see how his character changes at the realisation of the seriousness of his best friend's illness - something that really pushed through the emotive side of the film.  Kendrick's character also offers an alternative outlook with her excellently portrayed character who is new to the job of therapy.  The relationship she holds on screen with Gordon-Levitt is good to watch and is very sweet.

Movie review of 50/50

"50/50" really is a film that will surprise anyone who watches it.  It offers a compelling storyline that features different genre aspects that fit well together.  The acting is pleasant and respectful and background aspects of the film such as the soundtrack are also very good.  Michael Giacchino is the person responsible for this and many will recognise the sound of his music from the hit television series "Lost" (2004-2010). While watching this movie you will become engrossed in the story and will fall in love with a few of the characters and their relationships.  An emotional and inspirational film, "50/50" was a great surprise watch and deserves the good critical response it received.

M+F Rating: 8/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Don Jon Movie Review

Don Jon Movie Review

Director: Joseph Gordon-Levitt

UK Release Date: 15th November 2013

Running Time: 90 minutes

Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore

Joseph Gordon-Levitt's first directorial debut brings us "Don Jon" - a film billed as a rom-com.  However, it is not the typical film you would find in this genre and was a big risk for the "Inception" (2010) and "The Dark Knight Rises" (2012) star. Does the risk pay off?  The film was certainly different and fresh from others but it is not a movie that stands out as a must watch.

Jon Martello (Gordon-Levitt) is enjoying life; he loves partying, he loves his car, he loves meeting women but above all he loves pornography, claiming to watch it every day. This love infringes upon his relationships with women including Barbara Sugarman (Johansson) who he trails for a long time in search for love.  He also meets Esther (Moore) who he shares a connection with but can any female accept his love for pornography as part of the person he is?

Review, rating, trailer and photo of Don Jon

"Don Jon" is filmed in a unique way.  With many repeated scenes throughout with slight differences which is where a lot of the comedy comes from.  The  life of Jon Martello is the same day in day out verging on the edge of OCD.  The sheer extent to what he will do to get his 'fix' (of pornography) is portrayed very well and in a way that it can be watched easily by the audience.  Obviously the topic is still quite taboo to talk about in public and the film respects that to some extent. The film does not follow the usual romantic comedy plot line and this is something that is a positive for the film but come the end of the movie it does fall flat. It is predictable to watch and  you know what is going to happen yet it is not as clear cut as the usual films within this genre. 

The performances in the film are good but not amazing.  All three of the main actors, Gordon-Levitt, Johansson and Moore all provide easy and enjoyable viewing with not one standing out above the rest.  Moore and Johansson link up well with Gordon-Levitt who despite a dodgy awkward accent gives a solid performance in the lead role.  It is also a good directorial debut for Gordon-Levitt and his hitRECord production company.

Overall, "Don Jon" is a good film but does lack the final quality and edge to make it an excellent film. It is fun in places and the way it has been directed and put together is original - showing the raw talent of Gordon-Levitt.  It is a better than average movie and it is not one that you will want to watch with your parents. An entertaining movie with a good cast and interesting yet different storyline.

M+F Rating: 6/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Friday, 28 February 2014

The Muppets Movie Review

The Muppets Movie Review

Director: James Bobin

UK Release Date: 10th February 2012

Running Time: 103 minutes 

Starring: Jason Segal, Amy Adams, Chris Cooper, Rashida Jones

"The Muppets" directed by James Bobin and starring a cast that includes a mix of How I Met Your Mother and The Office US stars, and also features a huge haul of cameo appearances that has only been rivaled recently by "Anchorman: The Legend Continues" (2013) is a fun and light film that brings our beloved characters back to the big screen. The film is a musical centered around easy flowing comedy but is predictable as with many films of this genre. 

The story follows Gary (Jason Segal) and his brother Walter as they try to bring back together the Muppets to try and save Muppet Studios from Tex Richman (Chris Cooper) who is planning drill underneath the studios to strike oil.  With many obstacles along the way and with Gary also trying to celebrate his ten year anniversary with girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams), The Muppets are against the clock to save their real home. 

Jason Segal as Gary and Walter in The Muppets
Walter and Gary (Segal) in The Muppets

"The Muppets" is an easy enough film to watch although it does verge on the edge of being cringe-worthy.  This is mainly down to some of the songs and a few of the scenes.  This does not impede on the rest of the film, although it can be found to be slightly annoying when watching.  As the film is a musical, obviously songs are common.  The songs themselves are okay.  They did not really stand out to us but they were at times quite catchy and easy to follow.  To us, all of the songs sounded similar to songs we know but different from each other. In fact one song from the movie, 'Man or Muppet' went on to win an Oscar for Best Original Song.  

The acting in the film is okay and is what can be expected.  Segal and Adams are both enjoyable to watch and are great for the roles.  Both perform well on screen and are soft in nature and funny to watch.  They interact well and the characters are well thought out and fit within the story well.  As usual, The Muppets are excellent. The whole 'gang' is present and provide nice comedy and moments of laughter.  The way the film goes you definitely feel an attachment to The Muppets having grown up with them.  

Amy Adams as Mary with Jason Segal as Gary with The Muppets Kermit, Gonzo in The Muppets
Mary, Gary and The Muppets

This movie features a huge cameo cast that includes the likes of Emily Blunt, Whoopi Goldberg, Selena Gomez and Dave Grohl.  It is good to see many familiar faces but in one way we felt that the film relied to heavily on their influence and also that they took away from the story line.  They felt more of a distraction to us rather than something that added extra depth or comedy to the story line.

Overall, "The Muppets" is a good film that is enjoyable to watch.  It has a fun uplifting feel to it throughout and you are bound to know at least some of the cast.  If you are a fan of The Muppets or not, this film is still worth watching and will provide you with good entertainment that does not require much engagement.  The songs are pleasant and even though the film is predictable, it is a good film that brings together some great characters and memories of The Muppets back onto the big screen.

M+F Rating: 7/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Friday, 21 February 2014

Project X Movie Review

Movie review of Project X

Director: Nima Nourizadeh

UK Release Date: 2nd March 2012

Running Time: 88 minutes 

Starring: Thomas Mann, Oliver Cooper, Jonathan Daniel Brown, Kirby Bliss Blanton

We were told to watch "Project X" at a time that we would be able to go out ourselves afterwards.  This consensus was popular from those who we spoke to about the film - it is a film that will make you want to party.  Having watched the film we can understand this opinion but overall thought the film was very average.

"Project X" follows three school friends who plan a house party while one of them, Thomas Kub's (Thomas Mann) parents are away celebrating there anniversary. Thomas himself is worried about the party but encouraged by hist friends Costa (Oliver Cooper) and JB (Jonathan Daniel Brown) the party gets going and as with usual teenage parties, one thing leads to another.  Drugs, sex, music and destruction entail and not much is left to the imagination. 

JB, Thomas Kub and Costa in Project X

In a film sense - this is not a great film.  Publicized as a comedy, it rarely is funny from the script or actions that happen.  The acting is far from good and in places verges on terrible but this can be expected from a cast that is pretty much unknown to us before watching.  This along with a poor script really makes this film disappointing from the perspective of a film fanatic.  However, we still joyed watching it.

As we said, the script is poor and the acting is nowhere near solid but by the end of the film you feel part of the party in a way - as if you had your own special invite.  At the end of the day, it is the house party to end all house parties.  What goes wrong does go wrong and then even more goes wrong on top of that.  This is where the film can be slightly entertaining.  As the film and story develop you try to guess what is going to  happen next and to be fair, the director, Nima Nourrizadeh, does well in keeping ideas fresh in this department albeit extreme.  

Overall "Project X" is an okay film at best. Yes, it is entertaining and you do think to yourself 'wow, this is on crazy house party' but at the end of the day the film itself is going nowhere and is pretty poor. This topped with the poor acting and unknown cast makes this film pretty average. Having said that, it is still a film we enjoyed and it did evoke emotions in us in regards to wanting to go out with our friends and have fun.  It is a film that all should watch, whether you are a party animal or not, it is fun and very basic but do not expect to be blown away.

M+F Rating: 5/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Midnight in Paris Movie Review: Elegant and Sweet

Midnight in Paris Movie Logo

Director: Woody Allen

UK Release Date: 7th October 2011

Running Time: 94 minutes

Starring: Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, Kathy Bates, Michael Sheen, Tom Hiddleston, Marrion Coltillard

We had not heard much about "Midnight in Paris" but decided to watch it anyway and we are certainly glad we did.  A lovely film that is simple, elegant and a pleasure to watch. Owen Wilson stars as the main character Gil, who is trying his hand at writing while in Paris.  Struggling with his novel, he uses Paris as inspiration and mysteriously finds himself going back to 1920's Paris at midnight every day.  While doing this, Gil meets characters such as F. Scott Fitzgerald (Tom Hiddleston), Ernest Hemingway (Corey Stoll) and Pablo Picasso (Marcial Di Fonzo Bo).

We really enjoyed watching this film as it is not too intense.  Yes, there is obviously some sort of time travel involved but it is portrayed within the magic which is Paris.  We are never concerned with or question how Gil can go back in time, we just accept it.  It really is a nice story and Wilson is perfect for the role considering his own, soft and gentle way of acting. 

Owen Wilson, Michael Sheen and Rachel McAdams in Midnight in Paris

The storyline was good and we liked how it linked into real life characters like Hemingway and Fitzgerald.  The film is ultimately a rom-com yet it features less on this aspect compared to other films.  Rachel McAdams plays Gil's fiance and gives a good performance in a role that sees similarities between her character in "Mean Girls" (2004).  This is not your typical rom-com film which is pleasant as it gives the film a sense of seriousness and credibility.  

"Midnight in Paris" is a wonderful film and can be enjoyed by many. Written and directed by Woody Allen it is a great film that highlights the beauty of Paris and is complimented by good characters who are played by respected actors giving the film a different sort of depth that the storyline does not have.  This portrays onto the screen very well as you feel like the film is deep emotionally and it lets you relate to the main character while not requiring a huge amount of thought or thinking to understand what is going on.  It truly is an innocent film that is very satisfying to watch.

M+F Rating: 7/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Movie 43 Review: Can Anyone Tell Us What This Is?

Ensemble cast star in the disapointing Movie 43

Directors:  Steven Brill, Steve Carr, Elizabeth Banks, Rusty Cundieff, James Duffy, Griffin Dunne, Patrik Forsberg, James Gunn, Will Graham, Bob Odenkirk, Brett Ratner, Jonathan van Tulleken.

UK Release Date: 25th January 2013

Running Time: 90 minutes

Starring: Hugh Jackman, Kate Winslet, Stephen Merchant, Halle Berry, Emma Stone, Richard Gere

The question that came to mind when writing this review for "Movie 43" is 'where to start?' But then that was quickly followed by, 'is it even worth it?' We are still quite perplexed and what this film is and how it even came about.  A terrible movie that even as huge film lovers we cannot work out.  The movie consists of around 12 shorter sketches that are linked by a ongoing story of three teenage boys looking for the real 'Movie 43'. If you start watching it you will be lucky to make it to the end without turning it off.  One description we like of the film is 'Terribadful' by Cosmic Catacombs.

Christopher Mintz-Plasse in Movie 43

It is very difficult to describe what is like to watch this film without going into expletives.  Every sketch is werid and honestly you question as to why each actor has even agreed to be in this film - but this has its own story.  The movie was filmed over a very long period and they managed to contract actors in and then when they wanted to leave they were not allowed.  It does explain a lot as it is hard to find a reason as to why many of the world's most popular actors would want to star in a film as bad as this. 

Billed as a comedy it rarely produces a laugh throughout. Admittedly there are a few scenes where you can understand the joke but even then it is still withdrawn laughter.  The film focuses on topics that can be funny, but they seem to have tried to over do it and this is disappointing.  The other problem is that the link story that is shown throughout is very weak and immature. This story consists of three main characters who are relatively unknown in the film world and this was a problem.  We feel that it could have been better with a more solid storyline throughout and with more recognizable actors for the main story.

Emma Stone in Movie 43

We advise anyone about to watch "Movie 43" not to get to excited beforehand even when you look at the stellar cast that make appearances in the film. It really is a disappointment and is frankly one of the films that we just do not get.  We understand it is meant to be a comedy but it just does not come across in a way that it is relate-able or funny. The trailer is highly misleading.  We have watched the trailer again and it looks like it is a good film yet this is not the case. If you do choose to watch "Movie 43" it will probably be one of the worst films you are likely to see. We really would like to know your own thoughts on the film - are we being too harsh or do you agree? 

M+F Rating: 2/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

2 Guns Review: Never Rob a Bank Across From a Diner With the Best Donuts in Three Counties

Movie review, rating and trailer of 2 Guns

Director: Baltasar Kormakur

UK Release Date: 16th August 2014

Running Time: 109 minutes

Starring: Denzel Washington, Mark Wahlberg, Paula Patton, Bill Paxton, Edward James Olmos

"2 Guns" is a thoroughly enjoyable action film that is filled with easy action comedy that flows throughout.  Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg star as Bobby and Stig respectively.  Director Baltasar Kormakur previously known for "Contraband" (2012) among others, does a good job in keeping the film lighthearted and entertaining for all to watch.

The plot follows Bobby and Stig, who are both undercover agents working for different agencies who are unaware that the other is also undercover.  They happen to get caught up and involved in the robbery of over $40,000,000 and the film follows the actions they take to survive and get the money back.  CIA coverups, drug cartels and bank robberies all feature providing plenty of action and events to follow during the film.

Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg in 2 Guns

The film is good generally but is not a film you would consider one of the best.  The on screen presence and chemistry of both Wahlberg and Washington works very well and is enjoyable to watch especially for the more comical parts of the film.  Washington is solid as always.

We do find ourselves becoming bigger and bigger Wahlberg fans and this role suits him very well as he combines his action side from films like "Shooter" (2007) with his comedy side displayed in films like "The Other Guys" (2010).  In a sense, "2 Guns" can be seen to be a more serious version of "The Other Guys". There is comedy in the film, which is encouraging as otherwise it would be very bland.  It adds an extra element to the film which is heavily based on action scenes. 

The film is definitely a good watch and is no where near a disappointment.  Easy, fun and enjoyable but it does lack a really penetrating storyline that stops this movie becoming one of the classics.  It won't be one that you will remember for a long time but it does not stop this film being one that you could watch over and over again.  A solid film. 

M+F Rating: 7/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Grown Ups 2 Review: Not So Grown Up

Grown Ups 2 Movie Review starring Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chris Rock and David Spade

Director: Dennis Dugan

UK Release Date: 9th August 2013

Running Time: 101 minutes

  Starring: Adam Sandler, Chris Rock, Kevin James, David Spade, Steve Buscemi, Taylor Lautner

Following on from "Grown Ups" (2010), "Grown Ups 2"  which stars Adam Sandler, Chris Rock, Kevin James and David Spade, fails to impress.  A childish, predictable and disappointing movie fueled with cheap jokes and immature scenes makes this certainly not one of Adam Sandler's best movies. 

The opening scene sets the tone of the movie when a deer/stag starts urinating all over the house of Lenny Feder (Sandler).  It really makes poor viewing and that is a shame as we did enjoy the original "Grown Ups".  After the opening scene the film does improve slightly but throughout there are similar immature scenes that are not funny and seem quite desperate. 

Adam Sandler, Kevin James, David Spade and Chris Rock in Grown Ups 2

The four main characters played by Sandler, Rock, James and Spade are all enjoyable to watch but it feels that ideas for this film were low and it all felt very familiar.  The story line was weak and offered nothing.  The inclusion of Taylor Lautner to the cast was also a strange one and really did not work for us.  His character was annoying and not pleasant to watch.

It was a typical comedy film that all works out in the end but this film rarely amused.  It was actually quite boring to see cheap jokes over and over again.  "Grown Ups 2" certainly deserves its award nominations, although we doubt they are the awards the film team and cast would want to win.  

There really is not much to say about "Grown Ups 2" that is positive.  Yes, there were a few humorous clips but these were very rare and were often followed by a scene so ridiculous you question as to why you have not turned it off.  Unfortunately, "Grown Ups 2" is not a great film  but we did not have to turn it off, which from reading this review back is a surprise.  It really does not require that much attention so can be on in the background while you focus on something else.

M+F Rating: 4/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Monday, 10 February 2014

The Big Lebowski Review: Dude, Dudeness, Duder or El Duderino

Review of The Big Lebowski

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

UK Release Date: 1st May 1998

Running Time: 117 minutes

Starring: Jeff Bridges, John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman, John Turturrow

"The Big Lebowski" is one film that you will have to watch again.  This comedy crime movie is certainly one that is difficult to get your head around with a first time viewing but is very entertaining nonetheless.  At the time the film received relatively positive reviews but has now become a cult classic and it is no wonder why. Directed by the Coen Brothers and starring Jeff Bridges and John Goodman in character roles that suit them down to the ground, there is not much that "The Big Lebowski" has wrong with it.  
The Dude, Donny and Walter played by Jeff Bridges, Steve Buscemi and John Goodman respectively
The Dude, Donny and Walter in The Big Lebowski
'The Dude' (Bridges) is a lazy stoned bowler and shares the same name as Jeff Lebowski, a multimillionaire. He soon gets caught up in a number of kidnappings, mishaps and fights as he does his best to keep living his usual life while trying to make some money off his situation.  With help from Walter (Goodman) the film provides plenty of odd scenes that will have you scratching your head.

The characters in "The Big Lebowski" are great. Bridges and Goodman suit their characters perfectly and could actually be them.  A great on screen chemistry between them really makes it a pleasure to watch.  The two are backed up by Donny (Steve Buscemi) who although does not have a major role does provide an alternative edge of comedy.  There are some classic scenes featuring Jesus (John Turturrow) which will have you laughing a lot.  This character and Turturrow's acting really does add a lot to the film.

John Turturrow as Jesus in the Big Lebowski
John Turturrow provides great comedy in The Big Lebowski
One thing that makes this film a great watch is the dialect used. There were two things in this regard that stood out; quirky one-liners and intelligent conversation.  The film has both.  One of the reasons that is has become so popular is that it is easily quotable. One of Goodman's lines repeats throughout - 'Shut the **** up, Donny.'  He must say it at least 5 times throughout and by the last time you even start saying it with him.  It really works well.  Not only that, "The Big Lebowski" also features great scenes of intense and clever dialect and conversations which are engage-able for the audience. It really is a spectacle for to see both of these work in one film.  

The Coen Brothers also deliver fanatstic dream sequences that are tantalising to watch. Hypnotic, beautiful and completely wacky scenes both add to the aestetics of the film and also the confusion.  "The Big Lebowski" is a good film to watch but you will finish watching it the first time thinking, 'What was that?'  However, just writing this review and thinking about the film it is becoming clear as to why it is a fan favourite and also why it has become a cult classic.  We recommend that you watch "The Big Lebowski" and advise that you watch it many times afterwards as well. 

M+F Rating: 7/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

We're the Millers Review: Not Much To Say

Review of We're the Millers starring Jason Sudeikis and Jennifer Aniston

Director: Rawson Marshall Thurber
UK Release Date: 23rd August 2013
Running Time: 110 minutes
Starring: Jason Sudeikis, Jennifer Aniston, Emma Roberts, Will Poulter, Ed Helms
"We're the Millers" is a comedy film directed by Rawson Marshall Thurber who also directed the comedy film "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story" (2004).  "We're the Millers" centres around David Clark (Jason Sudeikis) a drug dealer turned drug smuggler.  He requires and assembles a fake family consisting of Rose O'Reilly (Jennifer Aniston), Casey Mathis (Emma Roberts) and Kenny Rossmore (Will Poulter) to help him smuggle drugs across the border.  Obviously as a comedy, things do not quite go to plan.
From a comedic standpoint the film is okay. Yes, it provides some unique laughs but generally it is what you would expect; easy comedy that has been seen before.  The story and plot are very predictable which is a disappointment but is generally expected with these sort of films.  The cast is okay, Sudeikis is average and unfortunately Anniston not great.  The film seemed to be more geared towards her being in as few clothes as possible.  Poulter and Roberts were also average playing characters that limited what they could do as actors.
Family photo from We're the Millers.
There is a good story there - it just was not developed enough for this to be a classic comedy film.  It seemed to be very childish and silly in certain scenes which was at times unbearable to watch.  There were some characters that were funny but again this was very limited and did not add a great deal.  So much more could have been done and the whole storyline seemed as if it needed a touch up or some extra work.
This is an okay film but as it is a comedy it can get away with this.  It is easy enough to watch and does not require much attention or challenge the audience at all.  It won't be a film that stays in your mind for a long time but you will laugh at some of the scenes and this makes it something that should be watched.  The story is different from most comedies although it does follow the usual core storyline of all comedies. 
M+F Rating: 6/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews

Friday, 7 February 2014

Snatch Review: Entertaining But Familiar

Review and rating for Guy Ritchie's Snatch
Director: Guy Ritchie
UK Release Date: 1st September 2000
Running Time: 104 minutes
Starring: Bard Pitt, Vinnie Jones, Jason Statham, Benicio  
Del Toro
An ensemble cast feature in a typical Guy Ritchie film that is both entertaining and light-hearted.  Situated between "Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels" (1998) and "RocknRolla" (2008), the film follows the usual British-crime-comedy theme that many of Ritchie's films happen to take.  "Snatch" is fun to watch but does repeat much of what we have seen of Ritchie's work before. 
Ritchie uses a large cast whose stories intertwine and mix up throughout.  Bookmakers, robbers, boxing promoters and gangsters all cross paths to look for a very sought after stolen diamond.  The film is similar in ways to "Pulp Fiction" in that different storylines cross over throughout although it can be said there is more of a link between the characters in "Snatch".  It is a good film that is easy enough to watch however the dialect may drive you mad especially if you watch the film in the same time period of watching one of Ritchie's other films.
Jason Statham, Brad Pitt and Stephen Graham in Snatch
One interesting aspect of the film was Brad Pitt.  He played the character Mickey O'Neil and fashioned a very strong, nearly unrecognisable Irish accent.  Now the accent is that strong that even the audience have struggled to understand what he was saying however if you can get your head around it, it is quite an impressive performance.  Fresh off his work on "Fight Club" (1999) Pitt showed that he can literally play any character and the accent provides a handful of jokes throughout the whole of the film. 
Vinnie Jones and Jason Statham were picked by Ritchie again to be cast in this film and maybe this is another area where similarities can be drawn from Lock Stock.  Both  of the actors starred in that film and arguably it shot them up in the world of film and movies.  It is difficult to see them differently in a film that is so similar in its storyline and direction.
All in all, "Snatch" is a very enjoyable film.  It certainly is entertaining and provides scenes that will make you laugh.  However, if you have seen some of Guy Ritchie's other films you will notice that they are nearly identical in the story line, with it only being applied in a different way.  Make sure you look out for Pitt's superb accent as it is one of the highlights of the film.  Let us know your own thoughts - did it work for you? Or was it to similar to Lock Stock?
M+F Rating: 7/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

The Hangover Part III Review: Have We Seen This Before?

The Hangover Part III Film Logo

Director: Todd Phillips
UK Release Date:24th May 2013
Running Time: 100 minutes
Starring: Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianikis, Ed Helms, Justin Bartha, Ken Jeong, John Goodman

Todd Phillips returns with the rest of the main cast for the third part in The Hangover film franchise.  Released only four years after the first, "The Hangover" (2009) and two years after the second, "The Hangover Part II" (2011), "The Hangover Part III" (2013) hit the big screen with the tag line 'It all ends.'  We could not be more relieved and that's coming from people who found the film easy enough to watch.

How many times can you tell the same story, with the same characters and still make a movie out of it? Well, so far it has been three.  Although this third installment does not follow the usual bachelor party and everything going wrong plot, it does follow the same principles. After the initial success of "The Hangover" the films that have followed have never lived up to the standard set by the first.  They are still enjoyable films to watch but are rather predictable and boring.  Unfortunately for us, the first film was too good, it was new, something we had not seen before and each film since has been a repeat of some sort of the first. It is a shame as we do like the cast and director and think that together they could have taken the film is a slightly different direction from the first to make it more successful rather than reusing the story in a different setting over and over again.
Doug, Phill and Stu wait for an intervention with Alan in The Hangover Part III

The film itself provided a couple of laughs.  It was nowhere near as funny as the first but we did prefer it over the second.  This film relied heavily on Ken Jeong's character, Leslie Chow, who became more of a prominent figure but again he did not have the same inspired effect that he had in the first.  This time we saw the introduction of a character called Marshall, played by John Goodman.  It was good to see another well-known actor but it was nothing that really changed the film that much.  One character that we did enjoy and would have liked to see more of was Cassie. She was played by Melissa McCarthy and became Alan's love interest albeit nearer the end of the film and only held a very minor role.

"The Hangover Part III" is an okay film but if you have seen the previous two it will leave you asking, 'Have I seen this before?'  You will still enjoy it but do not expect to be wowed or knocked off your seat with laughter.  The end of the film also sets itself up for a fourth film but unless something drastically changes from the usual storyline we can see it being another disappointing sequel.  It is an average film with few comedic moments but can still be enjoyed and if you have nothing else to watch then it is definitely worth putting on one afternoon.

M+F Rating: 6/10

Reviewed by M+F Reviews.