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Showing posts from February, 2011

"Vanishing on 7th Street"

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The trailer for this film looked like it would be a cross between a thriller and a horror movie. Personally, I was hoping it would lean more towards a thriller, since I really hate horror movies, but the film ended up being in a whole different genre: the cheesy horror movie. You know the type: it has scenes that are supposed to be scary, but instead, the audience is laughing. "Vanishing on 7th Street" falls into this category, which is unfortunate, because had it been scarier, it may have actually held some promise.

Luke (Hayden Christensen, "Takers") wakes up one day and heads out to work like any other day, only to find the streets deserted. Cars have been abandoned, and there are piles of clothes everywhere. When he makes it to work, Luke finds the same scene - everything is abandoned. Puzzled, he tries to figure out what is going on; three days later, when the amount of daylight per day has been diminishing rapidly, he gets an inkling: it's the dark that is…

"Take Me Home Tonight"

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I was fortunate enough to see a very early screening of this movie on February 8 at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor. At that screening, stars Topher Grace and Demetri Martin, who has a cameo, introduced the film and did a Q&A. Both are very funny guys, which makes sense, because "Take Me Home Tonight" ended up being hilarious.

Matt Franklin (Topher Grace, "Valentine's Day") has just graduated from MIT and doesn't know what he wants to do in life, so he takes a low-paying job at Suncoast Video and moves back home with his parents. His twin sister, Wendy (Anna Faris, "Observe and Report"), is about to move into a condo with her boyfriend, and has also applied to grad school at Cambridge. Matt's best friend, Barry (Dan Fogler, "Love Happens"), skipped college to work at a car dealership straight out of high school, and was just fired. Things are looking up for Matt, though: his high school crush, Tori Frederking (Teresa Palmer, &q…

"The Adjustment Bureau"

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The screening for "The Adjustment Bureau" was supposed to start at 7pm in Southfield, but instead started late at 7:45pm. I was debating leaving, but instead I stayed, and I am very glad I did, as "The Adjustment Bureau" is easily one of the better movies I have seen so far this year. The film is a mix between "Inception" and fantasy movies like the "Harry Potter" franchise, and the result of that blending is an interesting and unique film.

David Norris (Matt Damon, "Hereafter") is a young politician running for senate in New York. On Election Day, he has a chance encounter with Elise (Emily Blunt, "Gulliver's Travels"), and can't seem to stop thinking about her. A few days later, he runs into her again, on a city bus, and she gives him his phone number. He arrives at work a bit early and sees something he is not supposed to see: the Adjustment Bureau, hard at work, while his coworkers are frozen and time itself, it s…

"Unknown"

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From its trailer, "Unknown" looks like it will be a fast-paced film about a man whose identity has been stolen. Instead, it's more of a "thinking"-type film, but still delivers the car chases and interesting plot that those who saw the trailer are probably looking forward to.

Dr. Martin Harris (Liam Neeson, "The Next Three Days") is going to a convention in Berlin with his wife, Liz (January Jones, TV's "Mad Men"), but when they arrive at their hotel in Germany, he realizes he has left his briefcase at the airport. He immediately hops into a cab, driven by Gina (Diane Kruger, "Inglourious Basterds"), in an attempt to retrace his steps and return to the airport, but the cab crashes and he almost dies. Gina saves him but then takes off, as she's an illegal, and he ends up in the hospital for about four days, and in a coma for some of those. When he awakes, his first thought is of his wife, and how scared she must be being by …

"Cedar Rapids"

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I was able to see "Cedar Rapids" at its Sundance USA premiere at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor on January 28. From its trailer, it looked like it would be reminiscent of "The Hangover," which also starred Ed Helms, but I was worried that it may have put all its funny moments in the trailer, like some comedies are apt to do. Luckily, I was proved completely wrong, and the movie ended up being hilarious. Director Miguel Arteta was at the theater as well, and he did a Q&A session after the film, as well as a "Meet the Press" type session that I was also able to attend.

In "Cedar Rapids," Tim Lippe (Ed Helms, TV's "The Office") works for a small insurance agency in a town in Wisconsin. When his coworker suddenly dies, he has the chance to go to the big insurance convention in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and his goal is to win the prestigious "Two Diamonds Award" that his coworker had won for the agency four years running. He h…

"Just Go With It"

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I like Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler, but Sandler's movies usually end up being hilarious or really dumb. "Just Go With It," however, ended up surprising me; it was a lot better than I thought it would be, based on what I saw in the trailer. I didn't know that Nicole Kidman stars in the film either, so that was an added plus, as I like her a lot.

Danny (Adam Sandler, "Grown Ups") is set to marry at a young age when he finds out his fiancee is only marrying him because he's going to be a doctor. He drowns his sorrows at the bar one night, while still wearing his wedding ring, and finds out that, strangely enough, women are attracted to a guy wearing a ring. He then uses this as his "game plan" to pick up women, and for the next 20 years or so it works, until he meets someone that he thinks he can settle down with long-term, Palmer (model Brooklyn Decker). She finds the wedding ring in his pocket, however, and Danny lies and says he is gettin…

Topher Grace and Demetri Martin attend Ann Arbor screening of "Take Me Home Tonight"

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University of Michigan students were treated to a special screening of “Take Me Home Tonight” at the Michigan Theater on February 8th, with stars Topher Grace and Demetri Martin in attendance for Q&A. Grace had previously filmed in Ann Arbor, shooting “The Double” here and in Detroit, and he gave that as his reason for wanting to show the movie on campus. The movie revolves around Grace’s character, Matt Franklin, who has just graduated from college but is unsure of what he wants to do in life. When he finds out his high school crush is back in town, and she invites him to a party going on that night, he gleefully accepts, and he ends up having a very wild night, a la “The Hangover.”

Demetri Martin has an extended cameo in the movie, and actually is not even listed on IMDB as being in the film. He says that “Topher produced this movie, worked really hard on it, and I’m proud to be a part of it. I’m kind of a guest in the whole thing but we’ve become friends in the process.”

He touc…

"Gnomeo and Juliet"

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"Gnomeo, Gnomeo, wherefore art thou Gnomeo?" is not exactly what William Shakespeare wrote in his classic play "Romeo and Juliet," but in "Gnomeo and Juliet," the play is adapted by using garden gnomes as the main characters. What might have been a fun and unique movie, however, turns out to only be lackluster, and the funniest parts are given away in the trailer.

Gnomeo (voiced by James McAvoy, "The Last Station") is a Blue, and knows never to interact with the Reds, his enemies. When he meets Juliet (voiced by Emily Blunt, "Gulliver's Travels"), however, he can't help but fall in love with her. These two gnomes know that their love can never exist in the "real world," but they try to make a go of it regardless. Lord Redbrick (voiced by Michael Caine, "Inception"), Juliet's father, keeps a close eye on her, but she is still able to escape and meet Gnomeo in secret. When one of the Blues "kills"…