Archive for the ‘Review’ Category

The Rings of Akhaten

April 8, 2013

Spoilers! (You’ve been warned)
I didn’t like “The Rings of Akhaten”.

Here are some reasons:
1. Children
2. Singing. Really? So much singing.
3. The secret song to open the secret door to make a secret escape is “A-a-a-a-a”?
3b. Why is there a secret door when the Vigil can apparate. Also, why is it needed when the main door can easily open?
4. The door changes its combination millions of times a minute, but the sonic screwdriver can find the combinations quickly enough?
5. The door is heavy? WTH? How does the mass of the door make a difference to the doctor?
6. Sure. Let’s go on a flying moped instead of taking the Tardis even though we had to the rent the moped by giving away a memento from a deceased relative.
6b. How can a moped keep up with a beam carrying a single child?
7. Way too religious/spiritual. What happened to science?
8. The leaf somehow tells infinite stories but nothing else does? Everything has infinite possibilities. (My shirt, for example, might have been made into your shirt, a completely different article of clothing, or just burned up in a field fire.)
The ending didn’t resonate with me.

I watched and waited for something interesting to happen and I was disappointed. The episode never really started. I was severely underwhelmed.

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To Rome, with Love

July 25, 2012

The movie was very strange. It was an attempt to be nostalgic. I imagine it would be a better film for people who have already visited Rome for a significant amount of time.
There are 3 story lines that run independent of each other. They don’t intertwine. None of them seem completely believable, in fact, each of them leans heavily towards the ridiculous.
The feel of this movie is very similar to the feel of some off-off-broadway shows that I’ve gone to, except those shows had better dialogue.
Woody Allen is funny.
I don’t like Opera, but this film made the Opera singer funny.

Everything else was pretty much a waste.
4 out of 10. Add a star if you spent a significant amount of enjoyable time in Rome. Remove a star if you dislike Alec Baldwin.

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Seeking a Friend (for the End of the World)

June 27, 2012

This review contains spoilers, but only because I believe that giving this spoiler will help you enjoy the movie more. If you don’t want to read spoilers about this movie, all you need to know is I liked the movie overall.

Now on to the spoilers! 🙂

Seeking a Friend was a little sad, but not as sad as I expected it to be.

It had an early scene where a guy [commits suicide by jumping out a window and] (suddenly and unexpectedly) crash lands on Carell’s windshield. That prepared me to expect any close-up to be accompanied by a horrific scene. So, I was anxious the rest of the movie. However, that was really the only horrific scene, so it unnecessarily ruined the movie for me.

They really didn’t need to show it in such a jarring way. They could easily have shown a suicide jumper (depicting people’s sadness at the end of the world) without resorting to terror-tactics.

I liked Carell more in roles like this, where he not trying to be funny. If you are looking for a funny Carell, look elsewhere. But if you find him to normally be frantic, awkward, and annoying, you might enjoy watching him calmly face the end of the world.

Some reviews complained about Knightley’s performance, but not I. I found her performance consistent with the unstable character she plays in the film. I didn’t see any positive or negative energy between the two leads, but the world is about to end, so how much chemistry is there going to be? In fact, you could argue that more chemistry would have made the film less believable.

I liked the movie overall. I have to take off a point for the jarring suicide scene early in the film, so I give it a 7 out of 10.

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Movie Reviews for 2011

December 27, 2011
Films released in 2011 that I saw in the same calendar year

You can see a full list of films on Wikipedia

Films are listed chronologically
Title Genre Rating
The Green Hornet Superhero Action Comedy 5
Unknown Thriller Action Adventure 4
Hall Pass Blue Comedy 5
The Adjustment Bureau Romantic Thriller Political 6
The Lincoln Lawyer Legal Drama 4
Win Win Sports Comedy Drama 7
Source Code Science-fiction Techno Thriller 7
The King’s Speech Historical Drama 2
Your Highness Fantasy Blue Comedy 4
Fast Five Action Adventure 5
Thor Superhero 4
Bridesmaids Black Comedy 1
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides Fantasy Adventure Action Sword 6
Midnight in Paris Romantic Comedy Fantasy Historical 8
The Hangover Part II Blue Comedy 5
Beginners Independent Drama 6
Bad Teacher Blue Comedy 7
Transformers: Dark of the Moon Science-fiction Action 3
Horrible Bosses Black Comedy 4
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 Epic Fantasy 7
Captain America: The First Avenger Superhero Historical 8
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Science-fiction 6
The Help Drama Comedy Historical 9
Conan the Barbarian Fantasy Sword Sorcery Action 1
Colombiana Action Gangster 6
Our Idiot Brother Drama Comedy 7
Drive Drama Action Gangster 6.5
I Don’t Know How She Does It Comedy 4
Moneyball Sports Drama 6
The Ides of March Political Drama 6
The Three Musketeers Steampunk Action Historical 4
Margin Call Financial Thriller Historical 5
Anonymous Drama Historical 3
Tower Heist Crime Comedy 6
Immortals Epic Action Fantasy Adventure Drama 4
J. Edgar Biographical Drama Historical 4
Hugo Family Adventure Drama 3
Mission Impossible Action Comedy Drama 6.5
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Source Code

May 2, 2011

I went, without any expectations, to see “Source Code”. Most of the movie had an “Inception” and “Groundhogs Day” feel to it, which I enjoyed.

The movie was intense and interesting. There were moments of humor, but they did not take away from the seriousness of the situation.

However, the ending to this film is really bad. I suggest people pretend that the ending is didn’t really happen and is just someone’s imagination.

Overall, I give this film a 7 out of 10.

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Jewish Social Media Shmooze

November 16, 2010

Last night I attended the Jewish Social Media Shmooze, a tweetup/symposium organized by MetroImma.

Most past events were scheduled for weekends that I had the children. Sometimes they had weeknight events, but I didn’t have (enough/any) time to prepare. So, when I saw a notice from JewishTweets for this tweetup, I decided to give it a try. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that they were not charging people to attend.

Most of the people were friendly and social and I got to tweetup (twitter.com meet up) with a bunch of nice people.

The panelists, hsabomilner, jodisview, kenkrim, and kvetchingeditor were all highly knowledgeable about their craft. The moderator, critiques4geeks, started off by citing the 80/20 rule.

At first I thought she was highlighting that the room was mostly made up of women. However, as it turned out, she meant that 80% of social media content is made up by 20% of the population. (I don’t know if I agree with this rule.)

The panel discussion went well. There were a few things said that I disagreed with, but nothing critical.
To the moderator’s credit the discussion wasn’t too structured or unstructured. When an audience member asked about creating a seasonal twitter advertising campaign, other members of the audience felt comfortable in being recognized by the moderator and offering their own advice to the gentleman. However, the moderator didn’t allow the discussion to fall into chaos.

After the panelist discussion, the organizers raffled off a lot of prizes, including three raffles for a signed copy of “Kvetch as Kvetch Can“, a book of humorous cartoons by Ken Krimstein. After the raffle I spoke with Ken Krimstein. I told him that I was really hoping to win a copy of his book. He told me it’s better this way, because now I can buy a copy. I told him that I wish I could, but I’m Jewish.

I won the raffle for two tickets to the Poppy Seed Players: Latkes & Applesauce play. I’m not really sure how I get the tickets from the organizers or what I should do with them.

The Jewish Social Media Shmooze was sponsored by Bagels & Co., Diaper Buds, Exhale, JDeal, Kosher.com, Kosher Advantage, Kosher by Design, Kosher Inspired, Kvetch as Kvetch Can, Manischewitz, metroimma, Shmira Wear, and Shutterfly.

Overall I had a good time. I rate the shmooze in the 8 out of 10 range. I highly recommend they have future events (and that they invite me with enough time for me to clear my schedule).

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Pop Tarts (No, I don’t mean Britney Spears)

November 9, 2010

When I watched commercials for Pop Tarts I got the impression that they are incredible pockets of joy.
Yesterday, while doing my grocery shopping I stumbled on a sale for Pop Tarts. I figured I’d give them a try. I selected the chocolate fudge filling, since that seemed the least “healthy” option.
I learned from television commercials that Pop Tarts is a breakfast food, so I waited until this morning to open the box. When I opened the box this morning I was initially confused because the box said there were 8 items inside, but I only saw 4 wrappers. I felt one bar to judge if it was perforated and contained two bars. I felt one solid bar.
Shrugging, I open the wrapper and discovered the two bars were stacked on top of each other. I was surprised at how thin they were. On television they looked quite fat, but in real life they looked anorexic.
I popped it in the toaster oven for a couple of minutes and sat down to eat it. Until I started eating it I didn’t realize that it contained whole grains. I try not to eat whole grain foods because I don’t consider them healthy for me. But, I justified that since it was on sale and it had massive amounts of chocolate, I was probably protected from the whole grains.
One bar was enough to satisfy my morning hunger, so I guess it was a successful purchase. Now, what do I do with the other 7 whole grain bars?

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Exit Through the Gift Shop

June 16, 2010

I went to see “Exit Through the Gift Shop” because it got a high rating on imdb.com and there wasn’t anything else to see.
I couldn’t quite make heads or tails of it when I read the online reviews or for the first 10-15 minutes of watching the film.
However, once the film really gets underway it’s funny and insane.
It’s a documentary of a human, male, American via France, shop owner who develops an obsession with picture and video taking.
During his search for something to photograph, he discovers street art.

Hilarity ensues.

If you are an art student, you should definitely see this film.

I give this film an 8 out of 10.

Robin Hood vs Prince of Persia

June 16, 2010

I went to see “Robin Hood” and “Prince of Persia”.
They are both action films.
They both contain a lot of unbelievable (and not in a good way) fight sequences.
They both don’t make much sense.
However, while “RH” tries to pretend to take place in the real world, “PoP” acknowledges that it’s merely a fairy tale.

“RH” was shot in the dark. It’s often hard to tell who is whom. A few times, it got so boring, my eyes closed of their own accord. Whenever I reopened my eyes, it was always in the same dark, incomprehensible fight.
“PoP” fights are too long and drawn out, but they take place (for the most part) under an artificially intense sun.

Both “RH” and “PoP” have an unnecessary and drawn out romantic story.

I give “Robin Hood” a 2 out of 10.
I give “Prince of Persia” a 4 out of 10.

Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work

June 16, 2010

*** WARNING: THE FOLLOWING REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS ***
I went to see “Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work” last night. It is a documentary of a year in the life of Joan Rivers.

Joan Rivers is a human, female, Jewish, comedienne. You can read her bio here.

This documentary starts as Joan is preparing her play about her life story for Scotland and English theater. She hopes it’ll be successful there, so she can bring it back to America (read: NY and LA). She expresses concern that American critics will view her play as an unflattering caricature.
Unfortunately, while the play is received well by the audience, critics are harsh.

Joan tells us that she sees herself as an actress and the failure of her play proves that she will never be viewed as such.
However, from the clips of her play that are shown in the movie, it appears she’s doing stand-up comedy about her life. If that’s what her play consisted of, her conclusion is unfair to herself. Perhaps if she took on a dramatic role, she could make the audience forget that she’s funny and instead take her seriously as an actress.

The film shows Joan as a funny, caring, woman, comedienne, mother, friend, and business woman.

I give it a 6 out of 10. It’s a funny documentary. If you like stand up comedy or documentaries, you should give this film a try.