Category Archives: Comedy

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL (2014): Your Grand Audio Visual Feast Awaits

The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014), Tony Revolori, Ralph Feinnes
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014), Tony Revolori, Ralph Feinnes

Written and directed by Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel is a dramatic comedy adventure that stars Ralph Feinnes, Adrien Brody, Mathieu Amalric, Jude Law, Edward Norton and two great young Actors by the names of Tony Revolori and Saoirse Ronan.

A wonderful feast of good and humorous story telling that features rich, colourful cinematography and great dialogue is what The Grand Budapest Hotel offers.

Every line that comes out of the mouth of Monsieur Gustave – who is excellently played by Ralph Feinnes is delivered with such expert comic timing, that upon second viewing I could barely look at anything else. The same can be said for every move made by M. Gustave.

The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014), Tilda Swinton
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014), Tilda Swinton

Oddly enough, the first couple of times I tried to watch The Grand Budapest Hotel, I stopped within ten minutes. I just couldn’t get into the swing of it.

Having now seen the film more than once, please don’t let the initial slow-ish pace at the beginning dissuade you, for things get most interesting as soon as Monsieur Gustave is introduced, ten minutes in. That’s when the adventure really begins.

Happy Grand Budapest Hotel 🙂

G

BAREFOOT (2014): The Good & Bad Things

Barefoot (2014), Scott Speedman, Evan Rachel Wood
Barefoot (2014), Scott Speedman, Evan Rachel Wood

Barefoot is the story of the ‘black sheep’ of a wealthy family, played by Scott Speedman and the unexpected romance that blossoms after he meets a psychiatric patient portrayed by Evan Rachel Wood.

To get straight to the point, I didn’t find myself connecting enough with the two protagonists. I felt aware the whole time and especially in the beginning that I was watching Evan Rachel Wood playing a psychiatric patient, rather than getting swept into the world of the story.

Directed by Andrew Fleming, Barefoot also stars J.K. Simmons and Kate Burton – Both of whom I adore, but I’m afraid even they couldn’t save the film. Besides a few good songs on the soundtrack, there are minimal notable highlights.

The plot is certainly interesting. Unfortunately it just wasn’t executed particularly well. I’d sooner recommend watching something like Silver Linings Playbook (2012) instead. Like Barefoot, it’s a romantic drama / comedy about two misfits with their own unique problems who end up falling in love – and it’s far more convincing.

Barefoot, only if you really must 🙂

G

BLENDED (2014): Fun Family Comedy

Blended (2014), Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore
Blended (2014), Adam Sandler, Drew Barrymore

The story and themes of Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore’s Blended are not new, but that doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy it. Blended is the kind of family comedy film to see if you’re in the mood to relax with a movie.

The most memorable moments for me came courtesy of the character played by Terry Crews, who shows up several times in the movie.

Blended (2014), Terry Crews
Blended (2014), Terry Crews

If you’re already a fan of the Actors, Sandler, Barrymore and Crews, then you’re more likely to really have fun. Though I don’t love all his movies, I am a Sandler fan.

A taster of his personality is in the following fun Jonathan Ross interview.

Happy Blended 🙂

G

KINGSMAN – THE SECRET SERVICE (2014): Everything I Wanted To See

Kingsman - The Secret Service (2014), Taron Egerton, Colin Firth
Kingsman – The Secret Service (2014), Taron Egerton, Colin Firth

What a very pleasant surprise! Of course I should have had way more faith – if only because the film is directed by Matthew Vaughn, part of the great team that brought us Snatch (2000) and Lock Stock & Two Smoking Barrels (1998).

Starring Colin Firth, Sofia Boutella, Samuel L Jackson, Mark Strong, Michael Caine and Taron Egerton, Kingsman – The Secret Service or Kingsman for short is a great movie.

Kingsman - The Secret Service (2014), Sofia Boutella
Kingsman – The Secret Service (2014), Sofia Boutella

A story of adventure, fun characters, action, well choreographed fight sequences and some good old British gentlemanly charm. Kingsman is certainly very stylish and I definitely don’t just mean the suits.

There are one or two things that you’ll see coming, but even more so, the spectacle will surprise you and exceed your expectations.

All that remains is patiently waiting for the next instalment.

Happy Kingsman, The Secret Service 🙂

G

AMERICAN ULTRA (2015): Chaotic & Fun Adventure Ahead

American Ultra (2015), Kristen Stewart, Jessie Eisenberg
American Ultra (2015), Kristen Stewart, Jessie Eisenberg

I’m hoping that  Kristen Stewart and Jessie Eisenberg’s new film, American Ultra ends up delivering all the thrills suggested in it’s fun looking mad and chaotic trailer.

Directed by Nima Nourizadeh (Project X (2012), the film appears to be one of those stoner comedy / adventure movie types; kind of like one of my favourites, Pineapple Express (2008) – how great that would be.

I’m looking forward to seeing both Stewart and Eisenberg in different types of roles than I’m used to. However I might just be more excited about the characters played by John Leguizamo, Topher Grace and Connie Britton.

Happy American Ultra 🙂

G

JUST BEFORE I GO (2014): The Good Things

Just Before I Go (2014), Seann William Scott
Just Before I Go (2014), Seann William Scott

We meet the protagonist, Ted, played by Seann William Scott, at a point in his life when he has decided that it’s time to commit suicide – something he tells himself he must do but only after one last trip to his hometown.

Just before I Go is my first Courney Cox directed movie. It’s also the first time I’ve seen Sean William Scott in a serious dramatic role.

An Actor better known for his comedic work in Road Trip (2000) and the American Pie (1999) movies, I’m happy to conclude that Scott didn’t do terribly. Naturally however, I did find myself half expecting him to suddenly deliver a funny line – but that speaks more to the strength of his most memorable work and type-casting than anything else.

The key subject matter of Just before I Go is dark and some challenging real life situations are Featured. But worry not because this is a drama/ comedy, so the laughs do come and several of them courtesy of actor, Garret Dillahunt.

Just Before I Go (2014), Kyle Gallner
Just Before I Go (2014), Kyle Gallner

The best scene, in my view is the one where Ted’s teenage nephew, played by Kyle Gallner opens up to his uncle. Gallner’s character work in the movie is great overall – but especially in this scene.

Watch it if the topic of suicide intrigues you, you’re curious about Courtney Cox as a director or you just have to see Scott in a dramatic role. You could also simply be a big fan of at least one of the filmmakers involved.

Happy Film Loving 🙂

G

PIXELS (2015) Trailer 2, Definitely More Promising

Pixels (2015) Pac-Man, Toru Iwatani
Pixels (2015) Pac-Man, Toru Iwatani

In Pixels, starring Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Michelle Monaghan, Josh Gad and Peter Dinklage –  aliens have sent real life video games to end us by pixelation – and of course we must fight! Or at least the best players of each video game character  turned evil must.

The first trailer had me worried, but now…

…I badly want to see it work.

Happy Pixels 🙂

G

HITCH (2005) The Two Best Scenes

Hitch (2005), Will Smith, Eva Mendes
Hitch (2005), Will Smith, Eva Mendes

Will Smith and Kevin James were well cast in their roles for 2005’s romantic comedy, Hitch. Smith, a Date Doctor/ Consultant and James, the ‘dating-life challenged’ singleton in desperate need of professional help.

Hitch works, in the most part because of the excellent chemistry between the two male leads. I had no issue at all with the film… that is until the last 20 minutes, by which I mean what happens romantically between Mendes and Smith’s characters.

Those last 20 minutes left me unable to recall another time when an element of a story felt so incredible forced. I just couldn’t buy it. The issue isn’t that what happened actually happened, but it’s the way it was written and executed.

It’s always a shame when something that takes place in a film completely forces you to remember that the people on screen are definitely ‘pretending’ because it doesn’t feel as real and realistic as it ought to.

Thankfully however, the memory of the films two funniest scenes will continue to shine bright in my memory. Kevin James’ show stopping dance moves and that little issue the issue with the crayfish. Watch it to experience those moments.

Directed by Andy Tennant; Eva Mendes and Amber Valletta also star.

Hitch (2005), Will Smith, Kevin James
Hitch (2005), Will Smith, Kevin James
Hitch (2005), Will Smith
Hitch (2005), Will Smith

Happy Film Loving 🙂

G