Monthly Archives: November 2014

The Book Thief (2013)

My Rating : 4.5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Sophie and Rush portrays a masterful performance in this literature/war masterpiece.”

A young girl (Sophie Nelisse) living with foster parents (Geoffrey Rush and Emily Watson) in Nazi Germany begins collecting forbidden books and sharing them with the Jewish refugee hiding in her home in this war drama adapted from Markus Zusak’s book by screenwriter Michael Petroni (The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys) and director Brian Percival (Downton Abbey).

The Book Thief

Liesel Meminger, a young German girl growing up in Nazi Germany, is the star of the show. She’s also the chief book thief in the novel, which is narrated by Death. When Liesel’s foster parents decide to give refuge to a young Jewish man hiding from the Nazi regime, the characters grow and change in horrible and beautiful ways.

Neighbors (2014)

My Rating : 3/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Nothing really cool about this, it’s like another version of American Pie with a couple and a baby involved.”

An immature couple with a newborn infant go to war with the fraternity that turns their once-peaceful neighborhood into party central in this outrageous comedy of one-upsmanship. Restless thirtysomethings Mac (Seth Rogen) and Kelly Radner (Rose Byrne) are still clinging to the last vestiges of their youth as they attempt to adjust to the rigors of raising a newborn in their picturesque suburban starter home.

Neighbors

When a massive moving truck pulls into the driveway next door, the bleary-eyed pair grow excited at the prospect of getting new neighbors. Unfortunately for Mac and Kelly, the new arrivals turn out to be the Delta Psi Beta fraternity. Even so, the couple remain convinced that they still have a modicum of cool left in them, extending a hearty greeting to popular chapter president Teddy Sanders (Zac Efron) and hoping for the best.

Neighbors

A few epic parties later, however, and Mac and Kelly have had more than their fill of the frat’s wild antics. Before long the gloves have come off, and a turf war erupts between the parents who only want a solid night’s sleep and the Greeks who crank up the stereo until the crack of dawn. Who will win is anyone’s guess, but one thing’s for sure — this neighborhood isn’t big enough for the both of them.

Edge of Tomorrow (2014)

My Rating : 5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Live, die, repeat!”

Tom Cruise stars as a futuristic soldier who is killed during a battle with alien invaders, and lives out the last day of his life over and over again in director Doug Liman’s adaptation of the popular Manga All You Need is Kill. In the not-too-distant future, a ferocious race of aliens dubbed “Mimics” have descended from the stars to stake their claim on Earth. Five years after arriving, they’re poised to claim Europe. Because the extraterrestrial invaders prove unusually proficient in responding to mankind’s typical combat strategies, the military begins outfitting its soldiers with weaponized bionic suits that increase strength, speed, and agility.

Edge of Tomorrow

Meanwhile, the military is certain that, by conducting a surprise assault on the west coast of France, they can catch the enemy off guard and defeat them. With victory in sight, General Brigham (Brendan Gleeson) tasks Major William Cage (Cruise) with heading to the front lines and selling the war to the general public. Cage, however, is wary of the assignment due to his noted lack of combat experience, and unsuccessfully attempts to blackmail Brigham.

Subsequently awakening at Heathrow Airport, Cage is greeted by Master Sergeant Farrell Bartolome (Bill Paxton), who introduces the sniveling major to his new unit, J-Squad, as a deserter and a con artist. The next day, as J-Squad prepare to make the drop and attack the enemy, they are ambushed. Somehow, the aliens knew they were coming, and almost as soon as Cage lands on the beach, he is killed during a fight with a Mimic. Much to his shock, he awakens right back at Heathrow Airport, where the entire scenario begins to play out all over again.

Desperate to break the cycle when it continues ad nauseam, Cage seeks the help of Special Forces soldier Rita Vrataski (Emily Blunt), whose victories on the battlefield have turned her into a high-profile symbol of human strength and endurance. Eventually, thanks to repeated efforts, he manages to convince Vrataski that he is reliving the same day time and again, and after conferring with brilliant but disgraced scientist Dr. Carter (Noah Taylor), the trio devise a plan to use his unique situation to gain the upper hand over an enemy seemingly able to predict mankind’s every move.

Maleficent (2014)

My Rating : 5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “This is not just another bedtime story, this is Angelina Jolie reinventing a classic tale!”

Robert Stromberg’s Maleficent stars Angelina Jolie stars as the title character, who, as a teenager, is a powerful and respected winged fairy helping to rule a magical land full of strange creatures. Her homeland borders a country that is populated by humans and run by the cruel King Henry (Kenneth Cranham).

Maleficent

One day, Henry’s son Stefan (Jackson Bews) traipses into the fairy’s land and meets Maleficent, causing the two crazy teens to fall into forbidden love. Year later, Henry seeks to take over the magical land next to his kingdom, but is thwarted in battle by Maleficent. He demands revenge, and eventually his now-grown son Stefan (played as an adult by Sharlto Copley) succeeds by betraying the fairy and clipping her wings.

In response, an infuriated Maleficent swears revenge on Stefan; she gets her chance when the prince becomes king and has his first child, a daughter named Aurora (Elle Fanning) — as Sleeping Beauty fans will remember, Maleficent curses her to fall into a death-like sleep after pricking her finger on a spinning wheel on her 16th birthday.

Stefan demands that all of the spinning wheels be collected, and orders his daughter to be secretly raised in the woods by three good-hearted but dim-witted fairies, who will return her to him the day after her 16th birthday. However, Maleficent refuses to stay away from Aurora and ends up developing maternal feelings for the girl, eventually inspiring her to try to undo the curse she placed upon the princess.