Awkweird Me
European Vacation (1985)
Vacation (1983) didn’t do a whole lot for me, but it wasn’t a bad film. With this one though, they really didn’t even try. It’s pretty much a rehash of the first film, but it doesn’t have the same charm. It’s a shame they had to recast the kids, too. Eric Idle was probably the best part of the movie. It’s not funny or memorable, and it’s kind of a waste of a sequel. Christmas Vacation (1989) seems to be pretty well-liked though, so I’ll check that out sometime.

European Vacation (1985)

Vacation (1983) didn’t do a whole lot for me, but it wasn’t a bad film. With this one though, they really didn’t even try. It’s pretty much a rehash of the first film, but it doesn’t have the same charm. It’s a shame they had to recast the kids, too. Eric Idle was probably the best part of the movie. It’s not funny or memorable, and it’s kind of a waste of a sequel. Christmas Vacation (1989) seems to be pretty well-liked though, so I’ll check that out sometime.

MOVIE/TV NEWS: Robin Williams, Lauren Bacall, Veronica Mars

The Inbetweeners 2 (2014)
The existence of this film is somewhat of a surprise for me, as I had thought The Inbetweeners Movie (2011) was a swan song, finishing off the series and the characters. But after seeing it, I’m totally fine with it. In terms of quality, it’s about the same as the first one. However, I think I actually liked the sequel more. The fairly conventional plot that was forced into the first movie really hindered it, but in this one, the story’s a bit more loose, leaving room for the laughs to just flow freely. It did rely a bit too much on gross-out humour, and a couple of jokes fell flat, but there were still lots of really funny moments. I’m not sure if it would be that funny to anyone not already familiar with the characters, but for fans, it’s a great time. I went to an advance screening of the film in Auckland, and as a bonus, one of the directors and a couple of the cast members were there for a quick Q&A session, which was really cool.

The Inbetweeners 2 (2014)

The existence of this film is somewhat of a surprise for me, as I had thought The Inbetweeners Movie (2011) was a swan song, finishing off the series and the characters. But after seeing it, I’m totally fine with it. In terms of quality, it’s about the same as the first one. However, I think I actually liked the sequel more. The fairly conventional plot that was forced into the first movie really hindered it, but in this one, the story’s a bit more loose, leaving room for the laughs to just flow freely. It did rely a bit too much on gross-out humour, and a couple of jokes fell flat, but there were still lots of really funny moments. I’m not sure if it would be that funny to anyone not already familiar with the characters, but for fans, it’s a great time. I went to an advance screening of the film in Auckland, and as a bonus, one of the directors and a couple of the cast members were there for a quick Q&A session, which was really cool.

Divergent (2014)
Dear god, this was dull. I wasn’t super-interested in seeing it in the first place, but I really didn’t expect it to be this lame. It’s incredibly derivative, too. There’s absolutely nothing original about it. It’s basically just a mash-up of various dystopian stories, with Harry Potter and The Hunger Games thrown in. The lead character is nothing special, despite us being told that she is. And the supporting characters are all so similar that I became confused about who they were at all. I could forgive all the unoriginality if it was actually entertaining, but it was very slow, way too long, and insanely boring. I have no desire to watch Insurgent (2015) or the other sequels… But I probably will.

Divergent (2014)

Dear god, this was dull. I wasn’t super-interested in seeing it in the first place, but I really didn’t expect it to be this lame. It’s incredibly derivative, too. There’s absolutely nothing original about it. It’s basically just a mash-up of various dystopian stories, with Harry Potter and The Hunger Games thrown in. The lead character is nothing special, despite us being told that she is. And the supporting characters are all so similar that I became confused about who they were at all. I could forgive all the unoriginality if it was actually entertaining, but it was very slow, way too long, and insanely boring. I have no desire to watch Insurgent (2015) or the other sequels… But I probably will.

MOVIE REVIEWS: Guardians of the Galaxy, Jodorowsky’s Dune

The Turning (2013)
This film is actually made up of 17 short films, each by a different director and different cast, and based on the book of short stories by Australian author, Tim Winton. Earlier this year, I read the book after hearing about this film. I enjoyed some stories more than others, but overall, it was a good read. I had more or less the same experience with this adaptation. Rose Byrne gave a great performance, and Mia Wasikowska was very impressive with her directorial debut. Honestly though, I’d recommend just reading the book. The film is kind of paint-by-numbers, and doesn’t really bring anything that the book doesn’t already provide.

The Turning (2013)

This film is actually made up of 17 short films, each by a different director and different cast, and based on the book of short stories by Australian author, Tim Winton. Earlier this year, I read the book after hearing about this film. I enjoyed some stories more than others, but overall, it was a good read. I had more or less the same experience with this adaptation. Rose Byrne gave a great performance, and Mia Wasikowska was very impressive with her directorial debut. Honestly though, I’d recommend just reading the book. The film is kind of paint-by-numbers, and doesn’t really bring anything that the book doesn’t already provide.

RIP Lauren Bacall1924 - 2014

RIP Lauren Bacall
1924 - 2014

Jodorowsky’s Dune (2013)
This is a documentary about filmmaker Alejandro Jodorosky’s attempt during the ’70s to make a movie based on the science-fiction novel, Dune. It didn’t work out, but this film chronicles his efforts, and what a shame it is that it didn’t happen. He assembled a great group of people, from Salvador Dali to Orson Welles to Pink Floyd, but nobody wanted to take the risk with a comparatively strange director like Jodorowsky. I’ve only seen one film by him - The Holy Mountain (1973) - but it was incredible and I’m sure his version of Dune would’ve been better than David Lynch’s Dune (1984), which despite Lynch’s talent, is kind of a mess. It’s a well-made documentary, and a must-see for film history buffs.

Jodorowsky’s Dune (2013)

This is a documentary about filmmaker Alejandro Jodorosky’s attempt during the ’70s to make a movie based on the science-fiction novel, Dune. It didn’t work out, but this film chronicles his efforts, and what a shame it is that it didn’t happen. He assembled a great group of people, from Salvador Dali to Orson Welles to Pink Floyd, but nobody wanted to take the risk with a comparatively strange director like Jodorowsky. I’ve only seen one film by him - The Holy Mountain (1973) - but it was incredible and I’m sure his version of Dune would’ve been better than David Lynch’s Dune (1984), which despite Lynch’s talent, is kind of a mess. It’s a well-made documentary, and a must-see for film history buffs.

Well, I’m in shock… Robin Williams has always been a part of my entertainment life. Hook (1991), Aladdin (1992), Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), and Jumanji (1995) were some of my favourite movies as a kid. Later on, I got to appreciate him in Good Morning, Vietnam (1987), Dead Poets Society (1989), Awakenings (1990), Good Will Hunting (1997), One Hour Photo (2002), and World’s Greatest Dad (2009). Most recently, I enjoyed him back on TV in The Crazy Ones, and I was really disappointed when it was canceled. It’s such a shame that a man who brought so much joy to myself and countless others wasn’t very happy in the end. Rest in peace, Robin.

Well, I’m in shock… Robin Williams has always been a part of my entertainment life. Hook (1991), Aladdin (1992), Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), and Jumanji (1995) were some of my favourite movies as a kid. Later on, I got to appreciate him in Good Morning, Vietnam (1987), Dead Poets Society (1989), Awakenings (1990)Good Will Hunting (1997), One Hour Photo (2002), and World’s Greatest Dad (2009). Most recently, I enjoyed him back on TV in The Crazy Ones, and I was really disappointed when it was canceled. It’s such a shame that a man who brought so much joy to myself and countless others wasn’t very happy in the end. Rest in peace, Robin.

MOVIE/TV NEWS: Scream TV series, Arrested Development