Movie reviews

Sex Drive

Teen comedy dives into R-rated trend
Photo credit: Summit Entertainment

According to mainstream Hollywood, sex is the only thing on every teenage boy’s mind. He will do anything get it.

Ian is still a virgin. And because of peer pressure and hormones, he’s working as hard as he can to change that. An online friend who lives several states away offers to steal his virginity, so Ian and his friends steal his brother’s souped-up car for a road trip to make it happen. Craziness ensues.

Sex Drive is like a mix of American Pie and Road Trip with aspirations of being Superbad. While, yes, it is extremely funny, many times it dips into disgusting and gross comedic gags that nobody wants to see. And that is where it becomes vulgar and grotesque. Be warned.

If you like those types of movies, then don’t miss Sex Drive. If you want to see James Marsden (X-Men, Enchanted, Hairspray) stealing the show with his best character yet, and easily the best character in the movie, then you have another reason to check it out.

Good movie made for no one
Photo credit: Lionsgate

Oliver Stone is known for being one of the most controversial current filmmakers alive today. With his tackling a biographical film based on the life of George W. Bush, you might think it would be easy for him to create controversy. You’d be wrong.

Instead of bashing Bush’s every move, W. is solely informative. Yes, it portrays the president as being a bumbling idiot and a man with no public speaking skills, but it never tears apart his decisions or antics.

The film jumps back and forth from his past to his presidency and the decision making moves that started the war in Iraq. They never cover the controversy about his election, Sept. 11 — none of that. W. depicts Bush as a good man who made bad decisions. That’s it.

If you’re looking for an informative biography of Bush, then you’ll enjoy the film. If you’re looking for controversy or bashing, then think twice. The acting (apart from Thandie Newton as Condoleezza Rice) is amazing. The storytelling and directing is noteworthy. But nobody really knows who this movie was made for. Pointing out the characteristics of an audience that will appreciate this film is impossible.

Max Payne

Payneful in every way
Photo credit: 20th Century Fox

Where did Marky Mark go wrong? His performance in The Departed was perfect. After that, you think he’d have a ton of great roles. Instead he’s doing stinkers like Shooter, The Happening and now the video-game-based Max Payne.

Max Payne is about a detective hunting down and killing the men responsible for killing his wife and child. Shortly after we enter in, Payne stumbles across new supernatural evidence. It is then that the movie tries too hard to be like a mix of Sin City and Constantine. Max Payne never pulls it off.

Although Max Payne is PG-13, it tries playing it off like a gritty R-rated flick. The main problem is that the story goes nowhere. It is a boring mess. I’ve never played it, but if the video game is this boring, then I can’t imagine anybody ever playing it.

Who is going to like this movie? Teenage video game playing boys whose parents never let them watch good action flicks. Other than that small audience, there’s no one else who will see Max Payne and be glad they paid eight bucks to see it.

Pride and Glory

New telling of an old tale
Photo credit: New Line Cinema

When you see the trailers for Pride and Glory, you may feel like the whole movie is told in those two and a half minutes. That’s partially true, but not completely.

Watching the trailers, you may very well think there isn’t much of a difference between this movie and last year’s We Own the Night. But there is. I don’t want to get into it much because it might spoil the plot somewhat. All you need to know is that a family of cops is pushed to the edge when a bloodbath of a shootout tears apart their family and their unit.

What sets this movie apart is the way it’s told. The first half tells the story of looking for the guys responsible for killing four NY cops; the second half shows you how it affects their family. It gets very personal and deep with every member of the family, shedding new light on this old story.
If you like cop crime movies, intricate stories, great, intense action and amazing performances from Colin Farrell and Edward Norton, then check it out. It’s not flawless, but it is very entertaining if that sort of film is what you’re into.

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