Review-a-palooza — my latest raves & pans

Here’s my latest bunch of reviews, some from weeks ago.  Yes, that’s because I thought I posted ’em but in fact I didn’t.  My bad.

As always, clicky on the links to read the full reviews!

Movie Review: The Hunger Games

24 go in.  1 comes out.  The Hunger Games is a harsh look at an even harsher post-apocalyptic world where the winner of a civil war uses the lives of children from the losing areas as a yearly reminder that the losers have truly lost everything.  Throwing children into a pit to fight it out may seem a harsh topic for Young Adult Fiction — and it is — but it’s a topic that has caused the Hunger Games trilogy (The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, Mockingjay) to skyrocket up the bestseller charts.  Fans of all ages love the book, so it’s only natural that there would be a movie in the works.  And now the first book of the series gets it’s close-up with The Hunger Games.

I won’t lie; I’m an unabashed fan of the books.  I read them all in one weekend, the benefit of being late to the party, and I have my ship all ready (Team Peeta!), my nails painted for “my District” (Agro, for 11!), and my favorite secondary characters (Rue!  Cinna!  Caesar!  Finnick!  Oops, jumping ahead a bit….)

This movie is good; real or not real?  Most definitely real.

Movie Review: John Carter

Oh Pixar.  How I love the things you’ve done.  Especially the films Monsters, Inc. and Wall*E.  Director Andrew Stanton rocked the house, y’all.  Now there’s Stanton’s first live-action film, John Carter, done while on loan to Disney studios.  Um.  When does he get back to Pixar?

John Carter is an intriguing story based on a series of books that were written almost 100 years ago.  This movie has a whole lot going on.  Pity all that action is so dreadfully dull.  I felt like I was watching the movie through plexiglass, as if a beautiful tale was unfolding in front of me that I couldn’t touch.  The start of a series?  Prolly not.

Movie Review: Salmon Fishing in the Yemen

Salmon fishing.  Yemen.  Seriously?

Yep.  And if you’ve turned your nose up at the title figuring it’s most likely the dullest documentary ever filmed, you’ll be missing out.  Salmon Fishing in the Yemen is a wonderful feel good film, a fascinating indie flick that also happens to have one of the sweetest old-school romances I’ve seen in ages.

Sheikh Muhammed is in love with fly fishing.  Does it every time he heads up to Scotland.  But he has a dream; to have a salmon stream in his homeland.  So he asks his consultant Harriet to find out if that could be a reality, and when the fisheries expert Dr. Alfred Jones tosses out a financial outlay that seems impossible, things start to snowball.  Because the Sheikh isn’t about to let a thing like money get in the way of his passion.

Movie Review: Footnote (Hearat Shulayim)

Boy meets Talmud.  Boy falls for Talmud and devotes his whole life to it’s study.  But all he gets by way of recognition is a small footnote in someone else’s book…while his son goes on to greatness with his own research.  In Footnote, the different ways these scholars research only serves to illustrate the gulf between them.  This film is more a character study than a look inside the politics of the Israel Prize, but the seamless way director/writer Joseph Cedar blends the two creates a film that is a simple, but fascinating,  success.

Movie Review: Wrath of the Titans

It’s been two years since Legendary Pictures’ remake of Clash of the Titans.  And it’s taken me  about two years for me to have the taste of suck finally rinse out of my mouth.  Legendary  takes a swing at a sequel with Wrath of the Titans…and well, it’s better than the first film.

Perseus, having given up the option to live with his father Zeus as an immortal in Olympus, is now a fisherman with young son Helius (which is actually the name of the Sun God in Roman mythology, but whatever).  Zeus pops in for a visit, as Greek gods often do, and lets Perseus know that the Gods will soon be no more, thanks to a lack of prayer and belief from humans.  Hey, you screw enough married chicks and you’ll start to get dissed, Zeus.  Only a matter of time.

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