Tag Archive: acting


The Taking of Deborah Logan

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My husband and I watched this 2014 movie last night as an afterthought. It was something to watch when we otherwise had nothing particular to catch up on. I wasn’t expecting much. Hell at first I wasn’t even sure if I would really watch it. I figured I would half assedley pay attention and then pass out snuggled under my blanket. Contrary to my presumptions I stayed awake and paid attention for the entire 90 minutes.

This is one of those movies following in the footsteps of “The Blair Witch Project”; hand-held cameras from people who are supposedly making a documentary, but we all know it’s just a movie. When I saw this was the basis of the film I rolled my eyes and thought, “Here we go again.” This seems to be the formula for so many horror flicks of late. It starts out kinda cheesy, but it gets better!

The plot begins with a group of 3 college kids making a documentary about Alzheimer’s. They are staying with an elderly woman and her daughter in a big, old house in a tiny town in Virginia, hey that’s where I live! The whole time I was watching this movie I kept thinking I knew the old lady from something, but couldn’t place her. She is the soap-opera actress, Jill Larson, whom spent the majority of her career playing Opal on “All my Children.” This was my Mom’s show when I was a kid. I spent every summer afternoon and sick day at home watching that show after lunch while my Mom folded clothes or something. I had seen her for most of my childhood and I couldn’t remember who the hell she was. I was kinda excited when I saw it was Opal.

Anyhoo, back to the movie, it turns out this lady doesn’t just have Alzheimer’s. The craziness starts pretty early on. I think one of the scariest things about this movie is the fact that it is an old woman who plays the spooky part. There is something really terrifying about seeing what should be a sweet old lady standing with her back to you in a dark room for a couple of minutes and then doing some crazy stuff after all the suspense.

The plot is decent, not really believable and sometimes a tad bit hard to follow, but decent. There is some not so good dialogue and acting. There are way too many scenes where the cast is running around in the dark with flashlights when you know damn well the lights in the house work. The gory bits that make you squirm, the suspenseful spooky scenes with Opal walking around in the dark or being somewhere unexpected and the crazy stuff that happens at the end make this a pretty good horror film. It is the first film written and directed by the new comer, Adam Robitel. I hope we see more form him in the future. I give this one a 3.9 out of 5. It is worth watching if you want a scare or are a fan of horror.

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Oz the Great and Powerful

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I recently watched this movie with my family. I had been interested to see it in the theater and we almost did see it then, but it didn’t work out. If you are expecting to see a prequel that is equal in greatness to the masterpiece that is The Wizard of Oz you will be greatly disappointed. Once again Disney has let us all down. That doesn’t mean this isn’t a good movie, it just means that Disney’s standards have been in the toilet for such a long time there doesn’t seem to be any going back. If they held themselves to the high standards of the old days this movie would have been something great, instead it was just something ok.

It came out this year, 2013 and was directed by Sam Raimi. Yes, that Sam Raimi, the horror guy. I’m still trying to figure that one out. Just because he is a big name director, doesn’t necessarily mean he is the right guy for this film. I have a feeling that someone else could have done a better job. It has a “star” studded cast; James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams. Personally I think James Franco is one of the worse actors out there right now. The dude has no range, he barely can change facial expressions. I feel like every time I see him he is high as a kite and he hasn’t slept in about three days. On the other hand I love Mila Kunis and the other two ladies are fine actresses.

One of the biggest problems I had with this film, other than Franco, is that 95% of all the scenery was CGI. I realize that is “the thing” in this day and age. I also realize that the other “thing” right now is 3D and I know this film came out as a 3D film, BUT there is something that gets lost when every single thing in the film is a computer graphic. Some of the plants and what not were so cartoonish that it really was distracting. I feel like we lose something human about all the talent it takes to create a stage set made by hand that can still boggle the mind. Not saying that creating CGI and any other type of computer art isn’t talented. Many fantastic artists do it and do it well. I just miss the real thing sometimes. With that being said, it wasn’t all bad. There was some really awesome visuals in this film. I think the costumes were pretty awesome. The Wicked Witch’s black dress was badass.

I feel like it moved too fast, was missing some vital parts and had some not-so-well-thought-through ideas. It was entertaining and seeing how everyone came to be who they are was pretty interesting. Whenever we get a family movie from Netflix I usually keep it for a while so my kids can watch it again. When I went to put the disc back in the envelope I accidentally sealed it up. I wasn’t too upset about it, if that tells you anything. I’ll give it a 3 out of 5. It’s worth seeing, but it is not going to hold up over time and is nothing compared to The Wizard of Oz.

Jersey Girl

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I put off watching this movie, well since it came out in 2004. I had loved everything Kevin Smith until I saw the previews for this one. I am not a Ben Affleck fan. I’m not really sure what it is about him, he could totally be an awesome, nice guy, but something about him really bothers me. So when I saw that he was the main character and Jennifer Lopez was in it too, that made me cringe. I don’t really have anything against her either, but at the time she was all over everything. I do think she is a better actress than musician. Then when it came out and the critics ripped it a new one I said, “Yup don’t want to see that.” After all these years I saw it was coming on TV, on one of those Stars channels, so I recorded it.

This drama-comedy was much different than all of Smith’s previous films. It still had some of the quirky dialogue, cameos from some of his well used actors, and tons of his usual jokes. There is no Jay and Silent Bob, which made some people upset, but didn’t bother me. This was a different type of movie in a different setting. If Jay and Silent Bob would have been in this one, I don’t think it would have fit. Kevin Smith was obviously trying to create a more serious film and if you watch it all the way through you find out why. The film is dedicated to his “Pop”, whom I am assuming was his Grandfather. When I saw that I knew why it was different and it made everything ok. People have to deal with grief in their own ways. Creative people usually create something that helps them get through it. I have a feeling this movie was his way of not only dealing with his loss, but creating something that his Pop would have been proud of. That meant leaving out the beloved Jay and Silent Bob.

That being said this movie wasn’t the greatest. One of the beginning scenes is what should have been a very emotional monologue from Affleck. His acting was so shotty that it was painful to watch. It was by far one of the worse scenes in the movie. He was suppose to be crying, hurt and having a revelation about his life. Instead it was minutes of excruciating fake tears and lines delivered with no conviction. There was also some not-so-well-thought-through plot twists. There was some cheesy lighting, close-ups, music and editing. You could tell it was Smith’s first time trying to make a more serious movie. He used so many typical film tricks that it really brought the movie down.

One of the upsides to this movie is that George Carlin is in it! Especially now that he has passed from this realm it was great to see him and hear his voice. He was an amazing man and if you love him as much as I do you should watch this movie just because he has a decent part in it. Liv Tyler is super cute. This film was shot before she hit super stardom and she does a great job. It is still a Kevin Smith movie so it has throw backs to older films, like one of the main settings being a video store. There is plenty of great comedy in it, which Affleck does much better with. One of the best things about this film is there is an amazing cameo in it. If you haven’t seen it, I won’t spoil it for you. The cameo really makes the movie. Overall I would give this movie a 3 out of 5 stars. Some of the really great things make up for some of the really bad stuff. Plus he did it for his Pop. Gotta give the man some credit, he has a heart.

The Possession

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My husband and I watched The Possession a couple nights ago. This 2012 horror film was directed by Ole Bornedal, a Danish film maker whom also directed the 2007 thriller Nightwatch with the fabulous Ewan McGregor. It was produced by the cult classic creator of Evil Dead, Sam Raimi. This a pretty typical demonic possession movie, hence the title. It involves a separated family with two teenish girls. The younger child buys a creepy box from a yard sale and the craziness begins. Contrary to every other demon movie the Catholic church is not involved. This movie brings in the Hasidic Jews for some assistance. I enjoyed that aspect of the film. It was a nice change from the usual Jesus and crosses and holy water bit. There was plenty of creepy, looking with one eye closed, wriggling in your chair scenes. There was also some terrible editing. At once point the fade from one scene to the other was so long my husband turned to me and said, “Was that for a commercial break?” The acting from Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who plays the father, was pretty good; not to mention he’s not bad to look at for 92 minutes. On the other hand, Kyra Sedgwick, whom I usually love, was mediocre. I was slightly disappointed with her acting in this film. The story line was decent, but there was some pretty choppy parts that made it feel a bit disjointed. Overall I would give this flick a 3 out of 5. Worth seeing if you really love horror, thrillers, and demonic possession themes. If you don’t then maybe you shouldn’t waste your time.