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Episode 21: The not so mediocre mediocre weekend

Not every week can have amazing films coming out. It’s just not possible. So it’s nice to be surprised when you think you’ll be watching mediocre movies, but actually enjoy what you’re watching.

I’ll admit I didn’t get to the movies as much as I’d have hoped over the weekend but, in case you missed it, it’s Olympics time and I am glued to my TV. It was a struggle for me to tear myself away long enough to get to one movie so I knew a second wasn’t going to happen. We’re also keeping this episode short and sweet since we’re recording in the hour before the prime-time broadcast of the Olympics and Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte are meeting for their final race… we do have a few things that take priority over movies.

News & Gossip:

  • Desperation is the key to Colin Farrell’s success article
  • What’s in store for the next installment of the X-Men franchise? article
  • Prometheus 2 to start off where Prometheus left off article
  • Fast and Furious Six has started production article
  • It’s official. The Hobbit will be three films article
    • Production diaries for The Hobbit link
  • More Catching Fire casting news article

In theaters now:

  • Step Up Revolution (trailer): If you like your movies low on acting but high on fun, this is the film for you! When the cast of a film is made largely of dancers you can’t expect the acting to be spot on. You also can’t expect a riveting plot to hold your attention. What you can expect is amazing dance scenes. I will freely admit that I have a real love for Step Up 2. Not so much for Step Up 1 or Step Up 3, but I’ve seen both of those and would watch them again if they were on TV. I was not expecting much going into Step Up Revolution but was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. To be fair I love a good choreographed dance number. The plot was laughable and the acting terrible, but the film was saved by the dancing. I honestly had a hard time sitting still in my seat. I rated it a 3 out of 5 (for the fun factor) while Anna rated it a 2.
  • The Watch (trailer): Anna enjoyed The Watch much more than she thought she would. Ben Stiller and Vince Vaughan deliver pretty standard performances but Richard Ayoade and Jonah Hill steal the show. Anna refused to spoil the film for me but it centers around a neighborhood watch group hunting down aliens in their neighborhood and CostCo. Anna laughed her way through the entire film and rated it a 3 out of 5. Sadly I was not able to see The Watch because I was too busy watching the Olympics.

What’s on the horizon:

  • Chasing Mavericks: October 26 (trailer)

This weekend’s agenda:

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Episode 15: The Countdown to Magic Mike Begins

After two weeks off, we come back with all guns blazing and bring you four reviews!

News & Gossip:

  • A sign of the remake apocalypse article 
  • Wanted 2 could be coming our way… but how will it work without THE LOOM OF DESTINY? article
  • The poster for Taken 2 is out! article
  • Bachelorette… Could this be the raunchy comedy we all thought Bridesmaids was going to be? article

In theaters now:

  • Moonrise Kingdom (trailer): Wes Anderson’s latest is another uniquely satisfying treat amid this year’s field of remakes and reboots. It would be impossible for me to believe that anyone could ever categorize a Wes Anderson film as ordinary. His characters are quirky, his plots are bizarre (in an believable way), and his sets and costumes are a feast for the eyes. This story of a Khaki Scout and a girl with no knowledge of camping running away together on a small New England island was a delight from beginning to end. The cast brought this world to life in a way that I didn’t necessarily expect and even with some pretty amazing names (Francis McDormand, Bruice Willis, Bill Murray…) the real stars were the child actors. If you are looking for a light and 100% original comedy this is the film for you. At the time of recording only Anna had seen this film but I was able to see it shortly after. Anna rated it 4 out of 5 and I concur.
  • Safety Not Guaranteed (trailer): Anna was really impressed with Audrey Plaza’s turn as a newspaper intern investigating a claim of time travel. With a feature length film, she was able to add depth and layers to her normal schtick of the uninterested, unmotivated teenage girl. Her chemistry with Mark Duplass (playing the time traveler) was really great. Aside from a weird side plot from Jake Johnson’s character, the plot is clever, funny, and emotional. This movie, along with Moonrise Kingdom, is a great example of the clever, interesting, independent movies that are being made, as an alternative to the remakes and sequels. Anna rated it a 4 out of 5. Sadly I could not watch this film for the podcast as it is not currently playing in the Des Moines area.
  • Rock of Ages (trailer): I expected to love Rock of Ages in the way that I loved Adam Shankman’s Hairspray… but I didn’t. Honestly I didn’t care a bit about the young love story at the center of the film. Julianne Hough’s voice did not carry the rock ballads and honestly the oh so cliched twist in the relationship between her character Sherrie and Drew played by Diego Boneta could be seen coming a mile away and honestly I was eager for their scenes to end each time they were on the screen. This film was only saved from getting a 0 rating by three people: Tom Cruise, Alec Baldwin, and Russell Brand. They each had some great musical scenes and each of them had an interesting character arc. They were the only characters that I was honestly interested in seeing where their paths would lead. I rate this film a 2 out of 5 mostly for the aforementioned three performances and also because I do enjoy big choreographed dance scenes, of which there were many.
    • On a final note I can’t even believe I forgot to talk about the amazing Mary J. Blige! She was SPOT ON. I could listen to her sing any day of the week.
  • Prometheus (trailer): Like me, Anna had a hard time putting into words exactly how to review this movie, of course I couldn’t think of how to review it because I didn’t see it… If you don’t like movies about (angry) aliens, skip this movie. As someone who doesn’t like alien type movies, Anna wasn’t sure why she even went to see the movie. Because of this, she wasn’t sure she could give it a fair, un-biased review. She did think that although it was visually stunning, it seems like Ridley Scott sacrificed plot for the effects and look of the movie, as it was full of plot holes. However, said plot holes did not become apparent to her until the next day, so that does say something about how engrossing (emphasis on “gross) the movie was. Because Ridley Scott does not make “2” movies, Anna rated this one a 3.

What’s on the horizon:

This weekend’s agenda:

[audio http://archive.org/download/TwoWomenOneMovieAndAMicrophone/2women1movieEp15.mp3]

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