Awkweird Me
The Counsellor (2013)
This wasn’t as bad as a lot of people were saying, but I wouldn’t call it a complete success either. The story’s quite cool - dark, quirky and reminiscent of No Country for Old Men (2007), which was based on the book by Cormac McCarthy, who wrote this film. It’s a bit let down by Ridley Scott’s direction, though. It all feels a bit messy and without structure. I enjoyed individual scenes more than the movie as a whole. The cast is a strength, though. It might be Cameron Diaz’s best dramatic performance, but she still feels out of place. It’s not really something I’d recommend unless you’re a fan of the talent involved.

The Counsellor (2013)

This wasn’t as bad as a lot of people were saying, but I wouldn’t call it a complete success either. The story’s quite cool - dark, quirky and reminiscent of No Country for Old Men (2007), which was based on the book by Cormac McCarthy, who wrote this film. It’s a bit let down by Ridley Scott’s direction, though. It all feels a bit messy and without structure. I enjoyed individual scenes more than the movie as a whole. The cast is a strength, though. It might be Cameron Diaz’s best dramatic performance, but she still feels out of place. It’s not really something I’d recommend unless you’re a fan of the talent involved.

I just finished season 1 of True Detective. Thoughts:
As a lot of people have already discovered, this is a pretty excellent show.
It’s further proof that HBO is still the king of TV drama.
I wouldn’t exactly say I absolutely loved it, or that it’s a favourite show of mine, but I can’t deny how well-made it is.
The direction and cinematography were fantastic.
That one-take shot at the end of the 4th episode was awesome.
The writing was deep and thought-provoking.
It was also structured very well.
Woody Harrelson and especially Matthew McConaughey were brilliant.
I hope the next season’s cast and story can at least equal this one’s.

I just finished season 1 of True Detective. Thoughts:

  • As a lot of people have already discovered, this is a pretty excellent show.
  • It’s further proof that HBO is still the king of TV drama.
  • I wouldn’t exactly say I absolutely loved it, or that it’s a favourite show of mine, but I can’t deny how well-made it is.
  • The direction and cinematography were fantastic.
  • That one-take shot at the end of the 4th episode was awesome.
  • The writing was deep and thought-provoking.
  • It was also structured very well.
  • Woody Harrelson and especially Matthew McConaughey were brilliant.
  • I hope the next season’s cast and story can at least equal this one’s.
About Time (2013)
I liked it, for the most part. Richard Curtis kinda only does one thing, but he does it pretty well, so I guess that’s okay. The concept was quite cool, but I sort of wish they had done something a bit different with it. It has a lot of dark and creepy connotations when it comes to the the main character’s decisions, and they avoid all of that. I understand that that wasn’t the film they wanted to make, but yeah, still slightly disappointing. Ruby Sparks (2012) was kind of similar, but they tackled the implications more bravely. Anyway, it was nice overall, although the end was a preachy and sickly sweet.

About Time (2013)

I liked it, for the most part. Richard Curtis kinda only does one thing, but he does it pretty well, so I guess that’s okay. The concept was quite cool, but I sort of wish they had done something a bit different with it. It has a lot of dark and creepy connotations when it comes to the the main character’s decisions, and they avoid all of that. I understand that that wasn’t the film they wanted to make, but yeah, still slightly disappointing. Ruby Sparks (2012) was kind of similar, but they tackled the implications more bravely. Anyway, it was nice overall, although the end was a preachy and sickly sweet.

47 Ronin (2013)
From the trailers, I thought this might be okay. I was wrong. It’s pretty bad, really. For one thing, it’s rather boring. I found myself tuning out fairly often. The story’s so generic, too. It added absolutely nothing to the samurai films of the past. Also, the sub-standard visual effects really didn’t help. I want Keanu Reeves to be better, but he just isn’t. His performance in this is so very bland. None of the other actors were very interesting either. If you want a good recent samurai film, check out 13 Assassins (2010) instead.

47 Ronin (2013)

From the trailers, I thought this might be okay. I was wrong. It’s pretty bad, really. For one thing, it’s rather boring. I found myself tuning out fairly often. The story’s so generic, too. It added absolutely nothing to the samurai films of the past. Also, the sub-standard visual effects really didn’t help. I want Keanu Reeves to be better, but he just isn’t. His performance in this is so very bland. None of the other actors were very interesting either. If you want a good recent samurai film, check out 13 Assassins (2010) instead.

In a World… (2013)
This is the directional debut of an actress I’ve liked for a few years now, Lake Bell. Her direction is good, but the screenplay is where the strength of the film lies. Even though it occasionally falls into conventional patterns, it still feels fresh. The setting is cool, and the characters feel real and well-rounded. They got a bunch of my favourite comedians to fill the supporting roles, and there were also some really fun cameos. It’s nothing revolutionary, but it’s nice and thoughtful and I liked it. I hope Bell makes more films in the future.

In a World… (2013)

This is the directional debut of an actress I’ve liked for a few years now, Lake Bell. Her direction is good, but the screenplay is where the strength of the film lies. Even though it occasionally falls into conventional patterns, it still feels fresh. The setting is cool, and the characters feel real and well-rounded. They got a bunch of my favourite comedians to fill the supporting roles, and there were also some really fun cameos. It’s nothing revolutionary, but it’s nice and thoughtful and I liked it. I hope Bell makes more films in the future.

The Fifth Estate (2013)
Well, first off, the film isn’t that great. It’s not as bad as some people are making it out to be, but still. It was often boring, and I was wondering if that was just the subject matter, but then I remembered how The Social Network (2010) was riveting. The screenplay really just isn’t very good. I initially thought Benedict Cumberbatch was good casting, and it probably was, but I don’t think he was sure of or comfortable with what he was doing. When I saw the trailers for this, it seemed like it was going to somewhat celebratory about WikiLeaks and Julian Assange. Instead, it actually comes across as pretty biased towards portraying Assange in a negative light. After a little research, I see that the film changed or just plain made up a lot of the events, and it’s hard not to see it as propaganda. It kind of just feels like a waste of time now.

The Fifth Estate (2013)

Well, first off, the film isn’t that great. It’s not as bad as some people are making it out to be, but still. It was often boring, and I was wondering if that was just the subject matter, but then I remembered how The Social Network (2010) was riveting. The screenplay really just isn’t very good. I initially thought Benedict Cumberbatch was good casting, and it probably was, but I don’t think he was sure of or comfortable with what he was doing. When I saw the trailers for this, it seemed like it was going to somewhat celebratory about WikiLeaks and Julian Assange. Instead, it actually comes across as pretty biased towards portraying Assange in a negative light. After a little research, I see that the film changed or just plain made up a lot of the events, and it’s hard not to see it as propaganda. It kind of just feels like a waste of time now.

Short Term 12 (2013)
I thought this was pretty great. It felt sincere and genuine, and it drew me in emotionally, without getting too heavy on the sentimental side of things. The script felt pretty fresh, with some genuinely funny moments, as well as deep moments of pure poignancy. Brie Larson, whom I’ve been a fan of for a few years now, delivers a brilliant, realistic performance and the rest of the cast feel just as real. I felt that the ending was a little too neat and tidy, but overall, I wholeheartedly recommend this film.

Short Term 12 (2013)

I thought this was pretty great. It felt sincere and genuine, and it drew me in emotionally, without getting too heavy on the sentimental side of things. The script felt pretty fresh, with some genuinely funny moments, as well as deep moments of pure poignancy. Brie Larson, whom I’ve been a fan of for a few years now, delivers a brilliant, realistic performance and the rest of the cast feel just as real. I felt that the ending was a little too neat and tidy, but overall, I wholeheartedly recommend this film.

Machete Kills (2013)
I thought Machete (2010) was a lot of fun and I was all for Robert Rodriguez making more of these ‘grindhouse’ movies. This sequel wasn’t as good as the first one, but it still had what I wanted and I enjoyed it. It’s got the same ridiculous violence and cheesy ’70s style. Danny Trejo is still a total badass at 69 years old. I liked the bizarre range of supporting actors Rodriguez managed to get. It’s also a bit of a negative for the film though, as there are so many of them that it feels a little cluttered. On top of that, the whole thing is a bit too long. I was ready for it to be done, only to realise it still had a good 20 or 30 minutes to go. It’s a fun movie and it doesn’t try to be anything else. It’s not for everyone, but it is for me. Bring on “Machete Kills Again… In Space”.

Machete Kills (2013)

I thought Machete (2010) was a lot of fun and I was all for Robert Rodriguez making more of these ‘grindhouse’ movies. This sequel wasn’t as good as the first one, but it still had what I wanted and I enjoyed it. It’s got the same ridiculous violence and cheesy ’70s style. Danny Trejo is still a total badass at 69 years old. I liked the bizarre range of supporting actors Rodriguez managed to get. It’s also a bit of a negative for the film though, as there are so many of them that it feels a little cluttered. On top of that, the whole thing is a bit too long. I was ready for it to be done, only to realise it still had a good 20 or 30 minutes to go. It’s a fun movie and it doesn’t try to be anything else. It’s not for everyone, but it is for me. Bring on “Machete Kills Again… In Space”.

I just finished season 2 of House of Cards. Thoughts:
I loved the first season, and I was so excited to see this new one.
However, and I truly hate to say it, I was disappointed.
I was so enthralled and on the edge of my seat for so much of season 1, but not nearly as much in this one.
There’s a major plot twist in the first episode, and if you’ve seen it, you’ll know what I’m talking about.
I usually won’t complain or question writers’ decisions on a show, but honestly, I think it was a mistake.
It was a major strength in the first season, and to completely remove it dramatically changed the show, and not for the better.
Despite that, the show is still brilliant, of course.
Kevin Spacey is absolutely excellent, once again.
As is Robin Wright.
Molly Parker was an inspired addition to the cast, too.
The events of the season finale were inevitable but still pretty great.
I’m definitely looking forward to season 3, but I hope they can raise the show back up to the level of the first season, somehow.

I just finished season 2 of House of Cards. Thoughts:

  • I loved the first season, and I was so excited to see this new one.
  • However, and I truly hate to say it, I was disappointed.
  • I was so enthralled and on the edge of my seat for so much of season 1, but not nearly as much in this one.
  • There’s a major plot twist in the first episode, and if you’ve seen it, you’ll know what I’m talking about.
  • I usually won’t complain or question writers’ decisions on a show, but honestly, I think it was a mistake.
  • It was a major strength in the first season, and to completely remove it dramatically changed the show, and not for the better.
  • Despite that, the show is still brilliant, of course.
  • Kevin Spacey is absolutely excellent, once again.
  • As is Robin Wright.
  • Molly Parker was an inspired addition to the cast, too.
  • The events of the season finale were inevitable but still pretty great.
  • I’m definitely looking forward to season 3, but I hope they can raise the show back up to the level of the first season, somehow.
You’re Next (2011)
I love the horror genre and I’m always looking for the next great horror movie. From what I had heard about this one, I thought it might be a candidate. Turns out, not so much. I thought it was pretty lame overall. The acting was terrible, the dialogue was bad, the characters weren’t developed, and it wasn’t scary. I would praise the occasional surprising moment, but they’re undercut by the predictable story and plot twists. Also, the ending was stupid. It’s all a bizarre mix of The Strangers (2008) and Home Alone (1990). It’s an amateurish film, and I don’t recommend it unless you want to see some okay gore.

You’re Next (2011)

I love the horror genre and I’m always looking for the next great horror movie. From what I had heard about this one, I thought it might be a candidate. Turns out, not so much. I thought it was pretty lame overall. The acting was terrible, the dialogue was bad, the characters weren’t developed, and it wasn’t scary. I would praise the occasional surprising moment, but they’re undercut by the predictable story and plot twists. Also, the ending was stupid. It’s all a bizarre mix of The Strangers (2008) and Home Alone (1990). It’s an amateurish film, and I don’t recommend it unless you want to see some okay gore.