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Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Movie Mom™


New in Theaters
  New to DVD

Magic Mike XXL
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for strong sexual content, pervasive language, some nudity and drug use
Release Date:
July 1, 2015

 

Danny Collins
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language, drug use and some nudity
Release Date:
March 20, 2015

Terminator Genisys
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and gunplay throughout, partial nudity and brief strong language
Release Date:
July 1, 2015

 

Run All Night
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for strong violence, language including sexual references, and some drug use
Release Date:
March 13, 2014

Max
Lowest Recommended Age: 4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG for action violence, peril, brief language and some thematic elements
Release Date:
June 26, 2015

 

Unfinished Business
Lowest Recommended Age: Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for some strong risque sexual content/graphic nudity, and for language and drug use
Release Date:
March 6, 2015

New in Theaters

grade:
B

Magic Mike XXL

Lowest Recommended Age:
Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for strong sexual content, pervasive language, some nudity and drug use
Release Date:
July 1, 2015
grade:
B-

Terminator Genisys

Lowest Recommended Age:
High School
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and gunplay throughout, partial nudity and brief strong language
Release Date:
July 1, 2015
grade:
B+

Max

Lowest Recommended Age:
4th - 6th Grades
MPAA Rating:
Rated PG for action violence, peril, brief language and some thematic elements
Release Date:
June 26, 2015

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New to DVD

pick of the week
grade:
B+

Danny Collins

Lowest Recommended Age:
Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for language, drug use and some nudity
Release Date:
March 20, 2015
grade:
C-

Run All Night

Lowest Recommended Age:
Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for strong violence, language including sexual references, and some drug use
Release Date:
March 13, 2014
grade:
C

Unfinished Business

Lowest Recommended Age:
Mature High Schooler
MPAA Rating:
Rated R for some strong risque sexual content/graphic nudity, and for language and drug use
Release Date:
March 6, 2015

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Paul Peterson — Protector of Child Actors

posted by Nell Minow

Paul Peterson was one of my first celebrity crushes when he appeared on The Donna Reed Show. He was briefly a Mousketeer at age 8 and played Cary Grant’s son (with Sophia Loren as his babysitter) in the affecting romantic comedy Houseboat. But his greatest success in show business was in the classic suburban sitcom with Donna Reed, Shelly Fabares, and Carl Betz.
He had trouble finding work as an actor after the show ended and his difficulties led him to become the leading advocate for child performers, founding the non-profit group A Minor Consideration. He has been an outspoken critic of Hollywood’s exploitive treatment of young actors and has been at the forefront of providing support and guidance for them and their families. Peterson’s decision to file suit on behalf of Nadya Suleman’s children has, along with recent concerns about the Gosselin children, underscored the importance of closing a to a troubling loophole — the very strict rules protecting child actors do not apply to children who appear in “reality” shows. I applaud Peterson for stepping in when child protective services have failed to make sure that Suleman’s eight infants and her older children get the care — and privacy — they need and deserve.

The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit

posted by rkumar
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:All Ages
MPAA Rating:PG for mild language
Movie Release Date:1998
DVD Release Date:1998
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: All Ages
MPAA Rating: PG for mild language
Movie Release Date: 1998
DVD Release Date: 1998

This is a wonderful, magical movie!

Based on the short story and play by Ray Bradbury (who adapted for the screen), this is the story of five poor men who pool their resources to buy one magnificent, beautiful, white suit, each hoping it will make his dream come true.

One man is a political speaker, one is a musician, one is a con man, one is in love, and one is homeless and filthy.

Originally selected on the basis of size (all of them have to fit into the same suit), they find that they have more in common. All feel ignored and alone. As each gets to wear the suit for one hour, each finds it a thrilling and transforming experience.

The cast is sensational. Joe Mantegna plays the con man who puts the deal together with the thought of taking the suit on a one-way trip out of town, but who thinks better of it after he puts it on. Esai Morales (“La Bamba”) plays the musician whose guitar-playing draws every female in hearing range out into the street for a joyous dance. Newcomer Clifton Gonzalez Gonzalez (now Clifton Collins, Jr.) is a delight as the young man who wears the suit to find the courage to approach the beautiful woman he has adored from afar. Activist Gregory Sierra (TV’s “Barney Miller”) finds that people cheer his speeches when he wears the suit. And under all that grime is Edward James Almos (“Stand and Deliver”) as a homeless man who embraces life (and the girlfriend of a mean guy called “El Toro”) when he wears the suit.

At the end of the evening, the young man says, “This morning I had no friends, but tonight I have many friends.” You will feel you have made some, too.

This movie gives families a great opportunity to talk about dreams, cooperation, and self-confidence, and to think a little bit about what they would do if they had a wonderful ice-cream suit.

Fast & Furious

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:High School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some sexual content, language and drug references
Movie Release Date:April 3, 2009
DVD Release Date:June 28, 2009
C
Lowest Recommended Age: High School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some sexual content, language and drug references
Movie Release Date: April 3, 2009
DVD Release Date: June 28, 2009

How fast? How furious? Well, this fourth in the series is so zippy it doesn’t even have time for “the” or “and.” And how necessary? Is there any more fastness or furiousness not fully covered by the original The Fast and the Furious, the terminally vapid 2 Fast 2 Furious and the let’s-drive-around-Japan “The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift.” Do you think it tells us something that they expect the fans’ attention spans are so limited that they have to give every movie in the series pretty much exactly the same name? And the imagination of the almost-identical title matches the imagination of the almost-identical script, which primarily consists of racing cars, squealing brakes, crashing cars, tough-guy stares, shifting gears, exploding cars, meaningful pauses, big muscles, and girls with long, long legs and tiny little shorts.It’s something of a bromance, with Brian (Paul Walker) still conflicted about why he let Dom (co-producer Vin Diesel) go back in the first movie when he was a undercover cop investigating a car-theft ring and ended up romancing Dom’s sister (Jordana Brewster). As is almost inevitable in series sequels, this time it’s personal, with Dom seeking revenge for the murder of someone he loved, but the real issues that need to be resolved are who drives faster and how much Brian and Dom really like each other. The only thing glistening more beautifully in the sunlight than the paint jobs on the sleek contours of the cars as they hug tight corners are the muscles on the sleek contours of Diesel’s arms, hugged by tight t-shirts.There’s a bad guy who picks his drivers by having them race each other, so we are soon, well, off to the races, and director Justin Lin has some fun with close-ups of shifting gears and smashing steel. But the fourth time out is kind of a drag, and not in a good way. Continue Reading This Post »

Watchmen

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Adult
MPAA Rating:Rated R for strong graphic violence, sexuality, nudity and language
Movie Release Date:March 6, 2009
DVD Release Date:July 28, 2009
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Adult
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong graphic violence, sexuality, nudity and language
Movie Release Date: March 6, 2009
DVD Release Date: July 28, 2009

This movie deserves two separate reviews. The first is for fans of the the award-winning graphic novel, a dense, complex, challenging story of superheroes and costumed crusaders with lives that are messy, dysfunctional, and bleak.

You will be very satisfied with this film. Director Zack Snyder (300) is a fanboy who is passionately committed to the book and in essence and detail he really gets it right. The visuals are stunning, especially Night Owl’s flying “Archie,” and he has meticulously realized the vision of writer Alan Moore (V for Vendetta). Although Moore famously has had his name removed from the film because he does not believe that the story he designed to be told in panels on a page can be translated to screen, I think even he would agree that this is a much more sophisticated and faithful adaptation than “V for Vendetta” or “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.”

While there are moments that reflect Snyder’s understandable nervousness in meeting the demands of the graphic novel’s devoted — sometimes obsessive — fans and one serious weak point in the flat performance of Malin Ackerman as the story’s most significant female character (both Silk Spectre characters, mother and daughter, would appreciate the irony of apparently casting a performer solely for her looks to play one of their roles), overall the film faithfully and successfully grapples with the multi-layered storyline and the fascinatingly flawed characters.

And now for people who are not familiar with the book:

Don’t expect “Iron Man,” “Spider-Man,” or “The Dark Knight.” In fact, as darkness goes, this makes “The Dark Knight” look positively sunny. These are not people who get bit by a radioactive spider or come to earth from an exploding planet. Most of them have no special powers. They are just adrenaline junkies who like to get up close and personal with things that are very dark and disturbing, sometimes for reasons that are very dark and disturbing. And this is a dark and disturbing film, a hard-R with sex and violence that is just this side of an NC-17.

If you think all of that relates to the fact that it takes place in a slightly tweaked alternate world in which Richard Nixon is still President in the 1980’s, then you are beginning to get the idea.

And just to give you some further sense of how fully-realized the world of Watchmen is, the graphic novel, which was on Time Magazine’s list of the top 100 books of the 20th century, is filled with all kinds of artifacts and ephemera, newspaper clippings, excerpts from a memoir, and a separate story about a boy reading a comic book about a pirate. Snyder has separately produced some of this material and it will be integrated into the film when it comes out on DVD.

One of the highlights of the film is the opening sequence set to Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are a-Changin’,” bringing us up to date and provide some history and context. The song has, like everything else in the film, at least two meanings. The first is that intended by the song, the upheavals of the 20th century. The second is Moore’s cheeky parallel adjustments. In one quick shot, a female character replaces the sailor planting a kiss on the nurse in the iconic V-J Day photo by Alfred Eisenstaedt.

Years before, there was a group of masked crime-fighters called The Minutemen. One was the Comedian (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), a cigar-chomping, heavily-armed tough guy who sports an ironic (and anachronistic) smiley-button. It is his murder that sets off the story, and he appears in flashbacks that illuminate the past and present. The Comedian is the only Minuteman to belong to a sort of loose successor organization, The Watchmen. But caped crusaders have been outlawed by the Keene Act, and they are not working together any more, at least not officially. Former Watchmen members have gone on to other things. Ozymandias/Adrian Veidt (Matthew Goode), the most intelligent man in the world, now heads up a global corporation. Dr. Manhattan (Billy Crudup), once a scientist, was turned into a blue creature with the appearance of a man but with power over time and space. When he needs to think, he hangs out on Mars. His girlfriend is Laurie/Silk Spectre (Akerman), a second-generation crime-fighter. Her mother, the first Silk Spectre, was one of the Minutemen. And then there is Rorschach (the superb Jackie Earle Haley), named for the famous ink-blot test that inspires his mask. As in “V for Vendetta,” these characters all struggle with ends/means issues, but in Rorschach’s case, the line between justice and vigilantism is especially permeable. Everyone is compromised. The good guys are not all good but, even more intriguing, the bad guys are not all bad.

The range of perspectives on how to confront injustice, the moral compromises, and the personal and professional demons of the characters are set in the political context of an escalating nuclear arms race. Do we as a society exploit those who are damaged in ways that are convenient for us, allowing them to do the dirty work while we have the satisfaction of moral superiority? Can you fight bad guys without becoming one of them? Is being smart the same as being wise? Who watches the Watchmen? Does knowing the future reconcile you to it? What is the mask and what is the face? And what does it say about us that we call this entertainment?

Previous Posts

Magic Mike XXL
"We're healers," one of the male exotic dancers, explains to another in "Magic Mike XXL."  They're here to bring a smile to women who ...

posted 6:02:11pm Jun. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Terminator Genisys
"I'll be back," Arnold Schwarzenegger said in the first "Terminator" movie. He had the title role but only 16 lines, with about a total of 80 words. But those ...

posted 5:15:15pm Jun. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Stephen "tWitch" Boss of "Magic Mike XXL"
I asked actor/dancer Stephen "tWitch" Boss whether it was as much fun to make "Magic Mike XXL" as it looked, and he said, "Absolutely and even ...

posted 3:45:10pm Jun. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Exclusive Clip: All Creatures Big and Small -- FREE for a Limited Time on Google Play
[jwvideo vid='OljUWfMd' pid='GvkPWNBE'] Martin Sheen and Amy Grant provide the voices in this animated animal adventure inspired by Noah's Ark, from Entertainment One (eOne). "All Creatures Big and Small" will be available for free for a ...

posted 3:44:16pm Jun. 30, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: David and Christi Eaton of "Hope Bridge"
David and Christi Eaton wanted to help families devastated by suicide and those who struggle with thoughts of suicide. And so they wrote "Hope ...

posted 3:02:12pm Jun. 29, 2015 | read full post »

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