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Showing posts from December, 2013

Movie Review: The Wolf of Wall Street

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Could this be it, the movie that finally wins Leo DiCaprio his Oscar? The Wolf of Wall Street, based on the novel of the same name by Jordan Belfort, the "Wolf" in question, makes it seem like Leo should at least get an Oscar nomination for the role; however, the Academy has snubbed him in the past, so we'll have to see. He's already secured a SAG Award nomination as well as a Golden Globe nom, and after seeing this movie, he more than deserves an Oscar nomination for it.

Jordan Belfort (DiCaprio) starts as a trader on Wall Street in October 1987, the same month and year of a major crash. When his firm closes, he takes a job at a tiny place in a strip mall, wheeling and dealing "penny stocks": stocks that sell for pennies and probably will not make their buyers any money. He soon strikes out with Donnie (Jonah Hill) and they create their own firm out of the garage of an auto shop; Belfort eventually gets rich, expands the firm, and is living the high life,…

Movie Review: Grudge Match

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Grudge Match has a stellar cast, and it was fun to see Sylvester Stallone and Robert De Niro duke it out, as boxing rivals who haven't fought each other in thirty years. I haven't seen Kim Basinger on a screen in a while as well, and Jon Bernthal (Shane from Walking Dead!) plays De Niro's son. Alan Arkin also has a great part as Stallone's former trainer, who agrees to train him for the upcoming match, dubbed "Grudgement Day."

Billy "The Kid" McDonnen (De Niro) and Henry "Razor" Sharp (Stallone) each lost one boxing match in their careers, to each other. There was a third match that was supposed to occur, but Razor suddenly announced his retirement from boxing, and the match never happened. Thirty years later, The Kid and Razor run in to each other at a video studio, where they're recording movements and voicings for a video game depicting them, and they start fighting; one of the employees posts the video on YouTube and it goes viral.…

Movie Review: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)

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The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is actually a remake of the 1947 movie of the same name, which was based on a 1939 short story by James Thurber. It was in a book called My World and Welcome to It, which was then turned into a one-season TV show, from 1969-70. This version of Walter has an all-star cast, of which it makes ample use, and it's definitely one of the more unique movies I've seen this year.

Walter Mitty (Ben Stiller) works in negative assets protection at Life magazine, meaning that he is in charge of all the photograph negatives that come through the building. Life has just announced that it will be moving to an online publication, and the person facilitating this transition (Adam Scott) wants the newest Sean O'Connell photograph from him for the cover of the last ever issue of Life. There's one problem, though: Walter never received that photo from Sean O'Connell, and Sean is nowhere to be found. With the help of his coworker Cheryl (Kristen Wiig), th…

TICKET GIVEAWAY: Jump, 12/31 at the Maple Theater (Detroit area) - 5 winners

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The Gathr film series giveaways continue this week, with the last film of the year! Jump will be playing on Tuesday, December 31st, at 7:30pm at the Maple Theater (Bloomfield Hills, MI) - it would make a great night out before or after your New Year's Eve celebration.

Film synopsis:
This New Year is going off with a bang!

Jump follows the lives of four twenty-something's whose lives collide one fateful New Year's Eve in a night of fast talk, wild coincidence and intrigue. The unseen yet crucial occurrence of this tale is the strange disappearance of Eddie Kelly, which hangs over the city like a dark cloud. A wayward corpse and the busy intrigue of New Year's Eve all compose the jigsaw puzzle of this out of sequence, multi-stranded story. And as the night's events expertly fall into place, Jump weaves an existential portrait of our characters' lives as their hopes, fears and secrets are revealed.




GIVEAWAY:
Enter via the Rafflecopter form below. The ticket giveaway …

GIVEAWAY: Legend of Hercules poster, autographed by Kellen Lutz - ends 1/4/14

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The Legend of Hercules hits theaters on January 10th, 2014, and I have a poster you can win - signed by Twilight's Kellen Lutz, who plays Hercules in the movie!

About the movie:
In the epic origin story THE LEGEND OF HERCULES, Kellan Lutz stars as the mythical Greek hero -- the son of Zeus, a half-god, half-man blessed with extraordinary strength. Betrayed by his stepfather, the King, and exiled and sold into slavery because of a forbidden love, Hercules must use his formidable powers to fight his way back to his rightful kingdom. Through harrowing battles and gladiator-arena death matches, Hercules embarks on a legendary odyssey to overthrow the King and restore peace to the land.

First, check out the widget below:




GIVEAWAY:

Enter via the Rafflecopter form below. Contest ends on Saturday, January 4th, 2014 and winner will be emailed on January 5 and have 24 hours to respond, or an alternate winner will be chosen. Prize will be sent via FedEx or USPS - no P.O. Boxes, please. U.S. and…

Movie Review: Saving Mr. Banks

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Saving Mr. Banks is based on the true story of Walt Disney's fight to acquire the rights to Mary Poppins from author P.L. Travers. Travers and Walt Disney (the actual man, not the company) went back and forth for about twenty years before Travers finally sold the rights to him, and their relationship is included in the movie. Although the film isn't entirely historically accurate, it is a great movie, and I was surprised by how much I liked it.

The movie jumps between the past, when P.L. Travers flies to L.A. from London to negotiate Mary Poppins, and the present, in Australia, when she was a little girl. Young P.L., whose real name is Helen, lives with her father (Colin Farrell) and mother (Ruth Wilson), and although her father is a banker, he is a man of whimsy; he always makes her feel special, and for a long time she doesn't realize he's an alcoholic who sometimes even drinks before going to work. Eventually, her father gets very sick, and a nanny of sorts comes t…

Movie Review: Inside Llewyn Davis

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Inside Llewyn Davis is going to appeal to a specific set of people, most likely, although others may enjoy it too. Those that like folk singing will like this film, or those that like period films, as it takes place in 1961 Greenwich Village. The movie is directed by the Coen brothers (Ethan and Joel), and that is very obviously throughout the film as well.

The title character, Llewyn (Oscar Isaac) is a down-on-his-luck folk music performer. He performs regularly at a little club called the Gas Light, owned by a friend, and roams from couch to couch for sleeping arrangements, as he doesn't have his own place. One such couch is owned by Jean (Carey Mulligan), who lives with Jim (Justin Timberlake), and Jean has a problem: she's pregnant and there's a 50/50 chance it could be Llewyn's. Meanwhile, Llewyn has lost a cat owned by other friends, the Gorfeins, and must find him before he shows up to sleep on their couch again. Llewyn also has no money, and doesn't make m…

Blu-ray Review and FREE Digital Download: The Poor & Hungry, directed by Craig Brewer

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The Poor & Hungry is the type of movie I usually hate: shot in black and white, it's an indie movie that was filmed in the '90s and released in 2000. However, mostly because of the interesting characters and the interspersion of country music - it was filmed in Memphis - with cello music, I surprisingly did not hate this film. It's a little slow, which was a dislike, but the plot is interesting, and for the most part kept my attention.

Official synopsis (nytimes.com):  In this gritty independent drama, Eli (Eric Tate) is a car thief who works for Mr. Coles (John Still), the owner of a not entirely legit salvage shop. Eli has begun to have qualms about his career, and one day, after stealing a car from Amanda (Lake Latimer), an attractive young music student, he's wracked with remorse, and when he meets Amanda at an impound yard where she hoped to find her car, he offers her a ride home. A romance begins to blossom between Eli and Amanda, but as Eli tries to tear him…

TICKET GIVEAWAY: Pretty Old, 12/17 at the Maple Theater (Detroit area) - 5 winners

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The Gathr film series giveaways continue this week! The documentary Pretty Old will be playing on Tuesday, December 17th, at 7:30pm at the Maple Theater (Bloomfield Hills, MI). This film looks like it could be an interesting take on your normal beauty pageant.

UPDATE: A few of the senior contestants from this movie (see below for synopsis) are from Michigan and will be in attendance at the screening, with a Q&A following the movie. They will also be in full pageant regalia!

Film synopsis:
Beauty is not a number.

When 30 women aged 67-84 from across America and around the world descend on Fall River, Massachusetts to compete in the 30th anniversary of the Ms. Senior Sweetheart Pageant, hilarity and heartbreak ensue. Under the doting attention of pageant founder and personality, Lenny "Low Price" Kaplan, these women share intimate experiences, discover new-found passions and stir lifelong insecurities that challenge common misconceptions of aging. Following four diverse comp…

GIVEAWAY: Monster Jam at Ford Field, Detroit, January 11 - ends 12/15

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Monster Jam is coming to Ford Field in Detroit on January 11, 2014, and that means monster trucks galore! I've never actually been to a monster truck show but I bet it's a fun time, and I have both a discount code and a giveaway for you to win tickets.

A bit about the show:
Monster Jam®, starring the biggest performers on four wheels: Monster Jam monster trucks! The twelve-feet-tall, ten-thousand-pound machines will bring you to your feet, racing and ripping up a custom-designed track full of obstacles to soar over or smash through! Monster Jam provides a massive night’s entertainment tailored perfectly for your family’s budget, and these colorful, larger-than-life beasts are sure to capture the hearts of both young and old.

Featuring: Grave Digger® driven by Chad Tingler, Radio Station - driver TBA, Iron Man™ driven by Lee O'Donnell, Zombie℠ driven by Sean Duhon, Max-D℠ driven by Morgan Kane, Mohawk Warrior® driven by BJ Johnson, Northern Nightmare℠ driven by Cam McQueen,…

TICKET GIVEAWAY: What's in a Name?, 12/10 at the Maple Theater (Detroit area) - 5 winners

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The Gathr film series giveaways continue this week! The movie What's in a Name? will be playing on Tuesday, December 10th, at 7:30pm at the Maple Theater (Bloomfield Hills, MI). This film looks like it could be quite funny, and it's in French with English subtitles.

Film synopsis:
Can a name determine a life?

 Vincent (Patrick Bruel), a successful forty-something, is about to become a father for the first time. He is invited for dinner at the quaint apartment of his sister, Elisabeth (Valerie Benguigui), and brother-in-law, Pierre (Charles Berling) where he catches up with his childhood friend, Claude (Guillaume de Tonquedec).

Whilst waiting for Anna (Judith El Zein), his younger spouse who is always running late, his cohorts gleefully bombard him with questions on his fast approaching fatherhood... But when his hosts ask Vincent what name he has chosen for his future offspring, his response plunges the family into chaos.




GIVEAWAY:
Enter via the Rafflecopter form below. The ticke…

GIVEAWAY: Blu-ray #MovieMagic for the holidays, ends 12/11

So, have you tried watching Blu-rays yet? I personally own a Blu-ray player (that I got for cheap on Amazon a few years ago!) and I find the picture quality to be so much crisper and clearer than DVDs.

This holiday, rediscover the #MovieMagic behind your favorite films. Blu-ray offers exclusive special features that put you in the filmmaker’s chair, with a behind-the-scenes access to all of the magic: Special effects, talent interviews, alternative endings, unreleased scenes, bloopers, and more!

With a Blu-ray combo pack, you can enjoy your favorite films in high-definition whenever and wherever you want. You can keep the Blu-ray disc in the living room, DVD in the car, and the digital copy on your phone for when you’re on the move!

Grab your favorite movie lover a Blu-ray this holiday!

Highlights:
• With the combo pack you can take your favorite films wherever you go. You can keep the Blu-ray disc in the living room, DVD for the car, and the digital copy on your mobile phone while o…