The Ever Popular (No Not Really) Average Girl Reviews in 5 Bullets or Less

Since my legion of readers (Hi, Mom and Jamie!) are not doubt wondering where the latest Average Girl Reviews in 5 Bullets or Less post is, have no fear. It’s right here!

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (not a new release, but still going)

  • The movies are better than the books. I liked the book series over all (though I had some issue with the ending), but man, the movies really work.
  • Our Katniss (who has helped spark a national love affair with arrows, apparently) finds herself in the arena again, and this time it’s even nastier. But there is more to this Hunger Games than meets the eye and the stage is set for a rebellion. Watch out Snow!
  • I was Team Peeta all the way with this one, and even though I knew from the books what happened to Peeta at the end of this story, it was effectively done in the movie.
  • I wish this director would go back and re-do the first one. Catching Fire required more brightness and contrast overall, but I thought it was crisper as well. Can a movie be crisper? This one was.
  • You know you want to see everything Jennifer Lawrence is in. She is the intelligent ingenue that we’re all in love with. Go J Law!

Her

  • A great movie, but it’s a bit of a mind fuck.
  • But that’s a good thing. I mean, talk about rich material and ideas to ponder. There is something in this movie, I guarantee, that will touch on some aspect of your life.
  • Joaquin Phoenix is amazing. His character is an everyman, despite what you might think from the trailer.
  • Amy Adams is equally amazing. Actually, I would say her performance is brilliant. She plays the friend next door. The relationship between her character and Phoenix’s character is the respite from the central relationship of Phoenix’s character with his operating system (named Samantha).
  • This is set in a strange future that kinda makes sense. It’s disarming. As disarming as the lovely Samantha seeming as real as if she were a voice on the phone but artificial intelligence nonetheless. Therein lies the rub.
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Average Girl Movie Review in 5 Bullet Points or Less

I feel like I need opening theme music with that title!

So, I’ve been out of commission lately with a big work project, sickness and a host of sundry other things. Basically life. But along the way, I found time to see two big summer movies. I know. And, I never pass up a chance to give you my opinion, so here goes!

the_great_gatsby_movie-wideThe Great Gatsby – Review in 5 Bullet Points or Less

  • Stunningly beautiful faithful adaptation of the book in pure Baz Luhrmann style with an incredible score.
  • However I was meh at the end because it is such a faithful adaptation and I didn’t care for Tobey Maquire as Nick, but it’s Gatsby’s movie and Leo is BRILLIANT.
  • As is Carey Mulligan.
  • I only recently found out Carey Mulligan is married to Marcus Mumford and knowing that is more interesting than parts of this movie.
  • But do see this movie and then go watch the 1974 Robert Redford/Mia Farrow version for comparison (and of which I am partial to) and you will have your fill of Gatsby for a lifetime.

Star Trek Into Darkness – Review in 5 Bullet Points or Less

  • Saw this movie in IMAX 3-D and it was AWESOME and I’m a Trekkie from way back who was totally and completely happy from start to finish.
  • Things I love – Spock, Scotty, intense feels, Benedict Cumberbatch as Khan, Khan talking, Khan running, Khan the badass, Khan’s hair, Khan talking, Khan and Spock running and fighting.
  • I would, no lie, pay to see Khan and Spock run through the streets and fight for 2 hours.
  • Go see this movie right now and get the summer blockbuster season started right because none of the previews I saw will hold a candle to this awesomeness.

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Beautiful Creatures – Epic Friday Afternoon Escape

BC_1280_bannerI got an unexpected day off this past Friday! Plans on how to spend the day quickly unfolded and that included a movie with my co-conspirator and BFF. I chose Beautiful Creatures because I’m a sucker for teen romance stories based on books (I mean who isn’t) and the trailer looked good.

My familiarity with Beautiful Creatures on Friday morning was along the lines of:

  • It’s a YA book series that’s supposed to be good and I maybe picked up a copy and looked at the cover art at Barnes and Noble once. Maybe. Probably not.
  • I read the plot on Wikipedia.

I don’t often pick good movies on a whim, but I had a good feeling about this. It ended up a thoroughly enjoyed movie. Pure fantasy escapism at it’s finest with superb veteran actors to carry things along – a striking Jeremy Irons (who, to me, seemed to be channeling Gary Oldman), a sexy Emma Thompson and a film grounding Viola Davis. Spicing things up were some young newcomers – Alden Ehrenreich (who I’ve never heard of in my life) was SO stinking cute and southern quirky that he stole the movie even though Alice Englert held her own. Emmy Rossum was under-utilized but she did her thang and that’s all that mattered in the end.

The movie is about a young witch (thought they like to be called Casters) who is new to town and facing down her 16th birthday. This is significant not because she gets a lavish party (which she does) but because she must be claimed for either the dark or the light. There are family curses, a siren cousin and a mother inhabiting someone else’s body, but then there’s also a boy. Isn’t it always a boy? A cute nerdy boy who is all over the Bukowski book that you mention. The one who flirts with you by going toe-to-toe with you when you make fun of him. You know what I’m talking about. That boy! He complicates things.

The love story is wonderfully done and the strange characters that make up the town of Gatlin, SC are all great. Even having read the synopsis on Wikipedia, I had no idea what to expect and truly was just along for the ride. Sequel or no, I loved it and have recommended it to everyone. So you, go see it.

Final thoughts:

  • If this film accomplishes nothing else, maybe more people will read Bukowski.
  • Witch libraries are cool.
  • Some spirits like shrimp and grits.
  • The last :15 seconds of the movie gave me the biggest chill and all over goosebumps!
  • According to my co-conspirator, the move was better than the book.
  • According to everybody, the movie fixes the flaws of the book or is just a better version of the story. I will probably still read the book(s) at some point, but I’m in no hurry.