Yes, it's all about "Twilight" this weekend, but what about the other films? What I think of "The Blind Side" and "Planet 51"
There are four big movies in wide release this weekend. We have the Sandra Bullock starrer "The Blind Side," the animated film "Planet 51," "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire," and of course, the inescapable "The Twilight Saga: New Moon."
"THE BLIND SIDE"
Based on the book by Michael Lewis, "The Blind Side" tells the remarkable true story of Michael Oher, a homeless, neglected African-American youngster from a broken home.
He's not that good in school, but he shows potential in sports.
Michael gets accepted at the Briarcrest Christian School because of the insistence of the school's football coach.
One cold night, a Christian family sees Michael walking with nowhere to go. That couple is the Touhys -- Leigh Anne played by Sandra Bullock and Sean played by Tim McGraw.
Together with their kids, Lily and SJ, the Touhys decide to begin taking care of Michael's needs. It's just the Christian thing to do.
Soon Michael improves his grades, becomes an all-American offensive left tackle and in the 2009 NFL draft, he gets selected by the Baltimore ravens. The Touhy's were there to share the moment with him.
If this film sounds too good to be true, well it is. But it's a true story and that's what makes this film a miracle.
Set in memphis, the film captures the whole Southern feeling -- the accent...the flavor...the attitude.
Sandra Bullock did a great job as a nice Christian lady and Tim McGraw matches Bullock bit by bit.
"The Blind Side" is funny, heartbreaking, and inspirational although director John Lee Hancock, who previously gave us another sports drama "The Rookie," uses some cliches in his storytelling.
But still, I applaud the film for not taking the easy way out of making fun of Christians or Republicans or right-winger stereotypes. The film shows that whatever your beliefs maybe, when it comes to doing the right thing, we're all equal. I love that about the film!
And for that, "The Blind Side" gets this film ain't blind kisses.
Disney/Pixar has spoiled us. Now, every time there's a new animated film not made by the studio, they're measure against the quality of the Pixar films.
It may be unfair, but it's a good barometer.
This year, there are some films that measured up. "Monsters vs. Aliens," "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs," "Coraline," "9," heck, even "Ice Age Dawn of the Dinosaurs" was good.
I cannot say the same thing for the bland and boring "Planet 51."
It's like "E.T." in reverse. American astronaut Captain Charles "Chuck" Baker (voiced by Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson) lands on Planet 51 thinking he's the first person to step foot on it.
Of course he's not alone. He finds that this planet is inhabited by little green folks who are happily living in a white picket fence world. And they're afraid of one thing -- alien invaders!
Director Jorge Blanco and writer Joe Stillman created a creepy cocktail of sci-fi and fantasy cliches! I see this as a film that wants to be an allegory of our illegal immigrant alien problems, but by using unfunny setups like bodily functions, anal plugs (yeah, "Bruno"), and lame homosexual jokes (yeah, "Bruno" again!), "Planet 51" stops being funny in its first 10 minutes.
The film may have good visuals but that's it. Avoid this joyless movie. Or wait for it on cheap cable, not the on-demand kind.
"Planet 51" gets stay away from this planet kisses
My pick of the week is "Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire." Read my review right here.
And of course, click here to see my review of "The Twilight Saga: New Moon."
Have fun at the movies!
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The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences unveiled its list of the 10 animated short films. And they are:
•"The Cat Piano," Eddie White and Ari Gibson, directors (The People's Republic of Animation)
•"French Roast," Fabrice O. Joubert, director (Pumpkin Factory/Bibo Films)
•"Granny O'Grimm's Sleeping Beauty," Nicky Phelan, director, and Darragh O'Connell, producer (Brown Bag Films)
•"The Kinematograph," Tomek Baginski, director-producer (Platige Image)
•"The Lady and the Reaper (La Dama y la Muerte)," Javier Recio Gracia, director (Kandor Graphics and Green Moon)
•"Logorama," Nicolas Schmerkin, producer (Autour de Minuit)
•"A Matter of Loaf and Death," Nick Park, director (Aardman Animations Ltd.)
•"Partly Cloudy," Peter Sohn, director (Pixar Animation Studios)
•"Runaway," Cordell Barker, director (National Film Board of Canada)
•"Variete," Roelof van den Bergh, director (il Luster Productions)
The branch members will select five nominees among this list for the 82nd Academy Awards. Final nominations will be announced Tuesday, February 2nd.
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This is fresh, fun, zippy, I wish I can say the same thing about "New Moon." Sorry, Twi-Hards!
For my written review, please click here.
Otherwise, watch my review of "The Twilight Saga: New Moon," a.k.a. the love triangle between a human, a vampire, and a werewolf!
Here's more info about the movie from Yahoo:
Action/Adventure, Thriller, Romance, Sequel, Adaptation
November 20th, 2009
Rated PG-13 for some violence and action.
Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, Ashley Greene, Michael Sheen, Dakota Fanning and Nikki Reed
Bella Swan delves deeper into the mysteries of the supernatural world she yearns to become part of, only to find herself in greater peril than ever before.
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Last May, I told you that Johnny Ferraro, the creator of the "American Gladiators" TV show, was bringing his property to the big screen! (See Coming Soon to Theaters Near You -- "American Gladiators" The Movie! Yeah, "American Gladiators," May 12, 2009)
You probably thought I was lying, but hold on, a writer has been hired!
Peter Iliff will write the big screen version of "American Gladiators."
Variety told us that the story "which will feature the Herculean characters as superheroes, will be based on the TV show that first aired in 1988 and has been broadcast in more than 90 countries, with the format adapted for the local market in 14 of them. Most recently, NBC aired a primetime revival of the show in 2008."
Scott Mednick ("Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles") is producing and he's targeting to release the film sometime in 2011.
Iliff previously wrote "Patriot Games," "Varsity Blues," "Under Suspicion," and "Point Break."
Gosh, I think they're serious, so yes, "American Gladiators" is coming to screens near you!
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How could this be? Michael Moore's "Capitalism: A Love Story" was snubbed by the Academy Awards!
Moore's new documentary was largely favored by critics, including me, but apparently, it's not good enough for the Academy. It's this year's highest-grossing documentary (it has made $10 million so far), and Overture Films even opened it on Sept. 23, in time for the Academy's Sept. 30 cutoff date.
Moore won an Oscar before in 2002 for "Bowling for Columbine." He was nominated last year for "Sicko."
But this year? He didn't even make the shortlist! But Moore is not alone, other documentaries missing from the shortlist are "The September Issue," "Tyson," "Anvil! The Story of Anvil," "It Might Get Loud," and "We Live in Public."
I love all those documentaries, what's going on?
But the Academy has chosen their shortlist There were 89 films that originally qualified but the list is now down to just 15 documentaries.
And they are:
"Food, Inc." (THIS IS MY PICK! THIS WILL MAKE YOU THINK TWICE ABOUT BUYING FOOD, EVEN THE "HEALTHY, ORGANIC" KIND!)
"Valentino: The Last Emperor"
"Every Little Step"
"The Beaches of Agnes"
"Living in Emergency: Stories of Doctors Without Borders"
"The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers"
"Mugabe and the White African"
"Soundtrack for a Revolution"
"Under Our Skin"
"Which Way Home."
The Academy will choose the five nominees from these 15 films.
Oscar nominations will be announced Feb. 2, and the Academy Awards will be presented March 7.
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