I love all kinds of entertainment: movies, TV, music, DVDs and more. Here is my take on the past 6 months of entertainment. Part I will cover movies and DVDs. Part II will cover music and more.
The 4th installment in the “Jurassic Park” franchise brings in newly minted action hero Chris Pratt along with Bryce Dallas Howard. The park is finally open, and going well until they decide to mess with Mother Nature, and create a genetically enhanced super dinosaur. Of course, things do not go well. But that’s all part of the fun, because we want to see dinosaurs chomping some people. I enjoyed it for the popcorn movie it was. The first one is still the best. Grade: B
The latest from Disney/Pixar is an original story about the voices inside your head: Joy, Anger, Sadness, Fear and Disgust. All of these are inside Riley, an 11 year old girl who is dealing with some traumatic times in her life — moving to a new city, new home, new school, having busy and stressed parents, trying to make new friends. I really enjoyed this movie… and it’s take on how we are all complicated individuals and how we deal with the process of growing up. Grade: A-
Paul Rudd stars as the title super hero. The latest from the Marvel universe. This movie brought back the fun that has been missing from some other recent superhero movies. Ant Man is able to shrink to the size of an ant with the help of a special suit. Great cast with Michael Douglas as the hero’s inventor/mentor and Corey Stoll as the villain. Go see it.
Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation
This is the fifth movie in the Mission Impossible franchise, starring Tom Cruise as Ethan Hunt. Simon Pegg provides comic relief, and newcomer Rebecca Ferguson plays the femme fatale who may or may not be a help to Ethan. Like a lot of summer movies, the story is almost besides the point. These movies are all about the action and on that level it doesn’t disappoint. Grade: B-
The 4th James Bond movie starring Daniel Craig. It has some great action sequences, but overall it was not as good as Skyfall for me. I like the fact that there are ties to the previous Bond movies he has been in. The villain, played by Christoph Waltz, was disappointing to me. I kept thinking of the Austin Power movies (Will someone do another one, or reboot it, please?). Overall, a pleasant enough diversion. Grade: B-
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2
The 4th and final movie in the Hunger Games franchise based on the books of Suzanne Collins. Jennifer Lawrence is back as Katniss, leading us on a journey to the Capitol to kill President Snow and end things once and for all. Peeta is still recovering after being brainwashed. There are a lot of bobby traps set for the rebels as they make their way to the Capitol. This is a thrilling conclusion to the saga. Go see it. Grade: A-
The Good Lie
Based on true events, this movie tells the story of Sudan’s Lost Boys. Children that were forced out of their country due to war and violence. They traveled thousands of miles to Kenya, where they ended up in refuge camps. Years later some of them were lucky enough to emigrate to America. Reese Witherspoon stars in a supporting role as a job placement specialist in Kansas City, Missouri. Grade: A-
Love is Strange
John Lithgow and Alfred Molina star as same-sex lovers who get married after many years together, only to end up dealing with some unexpected consequences of their actions. Grade: B
Brendan Gleeson stars as a priest in Ireland who finds himself in a dilemma when a person threatens to kill him in 1 week (told to him in the confessional). He starts to see all the town’s people as possible suspects of the crime. Grade: A-
I hope you check these movies out on home video. I would love to hear your comments. Stay tuned for Part 2.
KiltManinSoCal is a Los Angeles-based writer and designer. Be sure to check out the latest T-Shirts for sale here, including Marriage Equality and Real Men Wear Kilts lines. They make great gifts for friends, family and loved ones.