Tag: Kristin Chenoweth

The Star

As of writing this introduction to The Star, there is only one mainstream / mainstream movie I have yet to see for the year, and at this point I can say that 2017 just overall sucked.

So many sequels of films that didn’t need them, offering nothing new. We have stories that are based on books and don’t rise up to their level. We have original works that don’t focus on the smaller elements. We have two fucking LEGO movies.

And then we have The Star. The cherry on top of the year. I haven’t released all the reviews I just mentioned, because at least one or two films were actually good, but I will let them happen eventually through the rest of this month and January. But it should be obvious I was not looking forward to The Star in any level.

Donkey
No film has starred a donkey successfully since Shrek.

The film starts off at “9 months B.C” because they need to make it obvious. This angel talks to Mary (Gina Rodriguez) that God is about to give her that baby, and she is like yes!

Now, months later we can focus on the real hero, Bo (Steven Yeun)! Bo is a donkey, a mill donkey, who spends most of his day walking in a circle, moving the mill. Hard labor. He has big dreams though. He wants to get out of the mill and carry around important people, like royalty, like the horses. Oh yeah, that would be the life. Eventually he does get to break out and finds himself in the barn of Mary and Joseph (Zachary Levi). You see, they just got married, and Joseph is of course worried about her baby bump. But she says it is from God, and he prayed so it must be okay.

What is not okay is some animals have spread the story of the angel and the future king, which has gotten to the ears of the current King. The new King doesn’t like that and sends people out to look for and kill this dude. Also, they are having a Census, so everyone has to travel to Bethlehem, or else! I don’t know what the or else is, but no matter the condition they must go.

So Mary and Joseph are traveling when she is about to pop, with a Donkey and a bird (Keegan-Michael Key) and a lamb (Aidy Bryant), and along the way they get into many shenanigans.

Either way, this story is pretty common, so you know where we are going with it and the whole thing is basically spoiled.

There are so many goddamn people who they grabbed to get presumably tiny quick paychecks. Because the more famous people you cram into a film, the more people will come to see it. Just ask Movie 43. We have as animals or the occasional other human: Christopher Plummer, Ving Rhames, Gabriel Iglesias, Kelly Clarkson, Anthony Anderson, Patricia Heaton, Kris Kristofferson, Kristin Chenoweth, Mariah Carey, Oprah Winfrey, Tyler Perry, Tracy Morgan, Delilah (from the Radio), Joel McCrary, Phil Morris, and Joel Fuck The Poor Osteen.

Camel
Winfrey, Jordan, and Perry are camels. Seems…racist.

Just like I have mentioned in previous films about mythology, I don’t care if they change aspects from the original stories, because who cares, they are made up stories as well. I didn’t care with The Rock’s Hercules, I didn’t care with Percy Jackson, and I don’t care with the Star.

But if I was Christian, I would be insulted by this film. To take one of the hallmarks of your religion and turn it into a big awkward joke. To have Mary and Joseph worry so much about the donkey and bird hanging out with them, making light of some king dude, and basically implying everything worked out well due to some animals.

Shit, the manger scene before it was set up had the horses basically making meta jokes about how convient it was for there to be this space, this manger, and a big awkward shining light on it that had been bugging them for weeks.

However even worse, I am going to quote the end of the film. This is Oprah as a camel, talking about the ending (spoilers?). Seriously, real words here, it took me awhile to get it all down: “You know, I think people are gonna remember this night. What happened here around this manger will be celebrated for thousands of years. Families will come together and exchange presents and sing carols, all to remember the grace of this moment that we are witnessing right now.”

That isn’t even funny at this point, as they basically stare at the camera to update us on what sometimes happens around Christmas.

The plot is full of mostly filler material, a lot of non exciting chase scenes, a very gullible husband, a very confident wife, and a shit ton of actors earning some money. But hey, at least the colors of Mary/Joseph were attempted to be correct.

0 out of 4.

My Little Pony: The Movie

Over four years ago, I reviewed a film on a whim. I had to drive almost an hour to get to the theater (which meant something pre-Houston days), for the only screen time it was showing. Something like 12:30 pm on a Saturday. A very limited release, I guess you could say.

That movie was My Little Pony: Equestria Girls. It was my first foray into the subject. Oh, I heard about it before on the internet, and heard about bronies, but I never thought about watching the show before. I just went to see the movie because, damn it, I watch everything, so why not that as well? I went in blind. I didn’t have any background on the show.

Now sure, after it I watched a few episodes and thought it was okay. Nothing I would binge watch, but something I could watch occasionally. And now, years later, I have seen tons of episodes over seasons. I understand the characters now. I have made art with the characters. But I am still not up to some obsessed level with the show, because I haven’t seen most of it. Just parts of episodes here and there. The kids have seen a lot more than me.

But I feel qualified (As fuck!) to review My Little Pony: The Movie. New art style, same ponies, music, and fun. I was excited for this. I took my whole family to this. My youngest daughter, who is two? This is now her first movie ever seen in a movie theater.

I was excited and ready to go.

Friendship
I just really wanted to find out if Friendship was still magic.

The story starts us off with Twilight Sparkle (Tara Strong) and Spike (Cathy Weseluck), properly freaking out because there is about to be a Friendship Festival, with all the kingdoms and princess and even goddamn derpy all excited. They need to highlight friendship, so that everyone can be so fucking magical. For whatever reason, the highlight of the festival is a pony, Songbird Serenade (Sia) singing. She feels stressed, but it is okay, because she has her FRIENDS to help her. They got this. Rarity (Tabitha St. German), Applejack, Rainbow Dash (Ashleigh Ball), Fluttershy and Pinkie Pie (Andrea Libman).

Well, turns out friendship can’t do everything, all the time, right away. Because a few storm clouds start to gather, even though Twilight asked for good weather. Maybe she didn’t friend enough of the people?! Inside the storm clouds are some sweet airships, apparently led by Commander Tempest Shadow (Emily Blunt)! With a name like that, of course she is fucking evil. She is a unicorn, with a broken horn. The saddest. With a head minion Grubber (Michael Pena), they work for The Storm King (Liev Shreiber), and Tempest goes and freezes 3 of the princesses! I don’t even have to tell you which one is able to escape.

The last words they heard were to find the Queen of the Hippos. Huh. Okay. Well, if that is the way to save everyone, then that is what they will do. And on the way, they will find a singing cat (Taye Diggs), some bird sky pirates led (Zoe Saldana), some water horse thing (Kristin Chenoweth) and her mom (Uzo Aduba).

Friends
Guys. I think friendship is back on the table.

Like the subtitle suggests, this certainly is a whole movie. 100 minutes long, big adventure, tons of fun, a beautiful heart, that is faithful and strong with…um, kindness. That last bit will only make sense to some of you.

They have about five or six songs, the best one from Rainbow dash about being awesome. A couple of decent ones, and a few forgettable, including Sia’s songs. Which on that note, Sia is my first real dislike of the film. Oh cool, they made a pony that looks like…Sia as a horse. Why couldn’t they have just made a singing pony by Sia be a pony? Kind of just feels shoe horned.

The story and plot is actually pretty good while also still being easy to follow. It isn’t entirely original, but it does some good things. The biggest problem with the story comes from Twilight Sparkle, our main character. The writers just totally seem to disregard her. She acts totally out of character from my point of view. Why? to advance the plot. And that sort of thing can really anger someone.

In a movie one can easily argue about how a character would act. But with 7 seasons behind us, it is easy to figure out what Twilight would do. They could have set it up better to better explain her actions, but she comes across as stupid, shallow, and certainly not the PRINCESS. OF. FRIENDSHIP.

My other biggest gripe? A totally huge disparity when it comes to pony importance. Of course Twilight is the most important, sure. But not too far after her is Pinkie Pie in terms of lines, jokes, and plot advancement. Then not far after, Rainbow Dash. But after that? Much further down, very far down, come our other three ponies. They basically exist as extremely minor characters with an occasional joke or reference. It was odd. Balance the main characters before you add an equal number of characters for celebrity sake.

Fans of the show should still enjoy it, minus the straight up murder of Twlight’s actions. I’m sure I will end up watching it again.

2 out of 4.

The Peanuts Movie

Going into The Peanuts Movie, I was worried. There are like, 3 or 4 Charlie Brown movies overall, and they were all made in the 1960’s and 70’s. That is a big gap in content. Yes, there was the longer lasting comic strip, and yes, there was a cartoon show or two I am sure. But in all reality, there hasn’t been new Peanuts stuff in a good long while.

So, will The Peanuts Movie just be a rehash of old material in a new way? Or will it be new material in a new way?

Regardless, it will be presented in a new way, so that is a positive. One of my biggest complaints about Winnie The Pooh from a few years ago, was that it was all material I had seen before, in the exact same art style as before. That was a rehash for no reason. That was a rehash for nostalgia profit. That is annoying. Although, John Cleese as the narrator for the film and the TV show that came out at the same time was a great idea.

Whether the material is old or new, damn it, at least they are portraying it in a new super CGI way, which better cover ups the nostalgia money grab.

Psych
“You keep using that term nostalgia? Are you really just upset with your own childhood and lack of fond memories?”
“Shut up, Lucy!” -Me

SNOW DAY! No school, the best news in town. Everyone is excited. Peppermint Patty (Venus Schultheis) and Marcie (Rebecca Bloom) are ready for hockey. Sally Brown (Mariel Sheets) is ready to exploit the situation as always. There is also of course Lucy (Hadley Belle Miller) and Linus (Alexander Garfin), Schroeder (Noah Johnston) and Franklin (Marleik Mar Mar Walker), Violet (Madisyn Shipman) and other Patty (Anastasia Bredikhina). Hell, even Pig-Pen (A.J. Tecce), Shermy (William Wunsch), and the little kid (Micah Revelli) are ready to play.

Everyone but one kid. Where the heck is Charlie Brown (Noah Schanpp)!? Sleeping in again, I see. Damn it Charlie Brown. We got shit to do, and you are off daydreaming and trying to fly a kite in a snow storm? It takes a special kind of guy to be Charlie Brown.

But their snow day is quickly interrupted when a moving truck comes into their neighborhood. Who could it be? Oh, a little red haired girl (Francesca Capaldi)! Oh shucks, she is pretty. And Charlie Brown wants to talk to her, but he is too embarrassed. After all, he is clumsy, he messes things up, he fails at most things. She would never like him, no matter what. Especially if he never talks to her.

Oh, and let’s not forget about Snoopy and Woodstock (Bill Melendez). That guy has been voicing Snoopy for fifty years! And for a few growls and dog noises, we also have Kristin Chenoweth voicing Fifi, the love interest. Yes, her super small role still qualifies her as the only real famous person in this whole movie.

Baron
Sorry Snoopy. You are truly the biggest star.

The Peanuts Movie is rated G for Good Old Fashioned Family Fun, and it is still an enjoyable film for child and adult alike. It isn’t even full of crude and sneaky adult jokes. The only adult joke in it is about Leo Tolstoy.

I honestly am not super familiar with past Peanuts content. I read some of the comics as a kid and have only seen parts of some of those movies. I might have seen a cartoon show a few times while growing up, but that would be it.

My main understanding is all the pop culture references so that I can survive as a functional human being. I know when to say “I got a rock” to get the cheap and easy laughs (Pro tip: Geologists love this line). The Peanuts Movie hit all the appropriate notes I could have hoped for in a Peanuts Movie, while also presenting it in a new (yet also familiar) art style.

See, the art style is hard to describe. Everyone is clearly rounder with more than 2 dimensions of shape. But the faces and the face styles are all still exactly the same as they have always been. I was a bit worried when I saw their faces in a poster, but it worked extremely well on the screen.

The Peanuts Movie truly is just a nice family movie. Sure, it isn’t an original concept. But it is a great introduction to a new generation and, of course, nostalgic trip for he older ones.

3 out of 4.

Descendants

I know, I know, I’ve been reviewing too many movies lately. And I know, I know, recently I reviewed Teen Beach 2, a Disney Channel original movie, but that was for a special occasion. It and its predecessor were milestone reviews, and thus, weird things were acceptable. Add in High School Musical and you will see the only Disney Channel Original movies I have reviewed have been musicals.

So why Descendants? Is it just to confuse my readers who might it get confused with the amazing The Descendants? Nope. It is because I used to watch these movies all the time. Not to show my age, but the new monthly movie used to be something special. (WARNING! WARNING! NOSTALGIA APPROACHING!) I was able to see things like Zenon, The Luck of the Irish, Motorcrossed, Cadet Kelly and more. I am not including Halloweentown, because Halloweentown sucked.

And you know what, those films are probably terrible now. But maybe Descendants is just like them. The plot has potential for an adult to enjoy. Maybe it is better than them. Maybe they can make a decent film that involves no music.

Alternatively, someone should review every single one of these films, while drunk. I am sure your website would get way more visitors than my own.

Evilll
Not a scene from the film, but damn it, too many important characters to ignore.

JUST KIDDING IT IS TOTALLY A MUSICAL TOO, I WAS WRONG.

Ahem. Ben (Mitchell Hope) is the son of the Beast (Dan Payne) and Belle (Keegan Connor Tracy, who is also in Once Upon A Time), and wants to make his first proclamation as almost king! You see, a long time ago, after his parents got married, they brought all the kingdoms together under one rule, which apparently is a bunch of Disney stuff. They then took all the bad people and left them on a magical island to live out their days all sad and shit.

Those bad people also had kids, so Ben wants to give a few of them a chance and bring them over to rich people awesome boarding school. He only wants the worst of them for now, for a trial run. And apparently the four worst on the island are…

Mel (Dove Cameron), daughter of Maleficent (Kristin Chenoweth), Evie (Sofia Carson), daughter of The Evil Queen (Kathy Najimy), Jay (Booboo Stewart), son of Jafar (Maz Jobrani), and Carlos (Cameron Boyce), son of Cruella de Vil (Wendy Raquel Robinson).

Great! Now their kids can carry on their parents wishes. Mel needs to steal a wand to free them from the island, Evie needs to find a prince to marry to take over his castle, Carlos needs to…I dunno, kill a puppy or something, and Jay needs to just steal stuff like a criminal street rat.

So it should be easy! They just need to also deal with, you guessed it, high school life. Girls, boys, class, sports, balls, homework, mutts. All of this wonderful stuff. And hey, a big plot line involves them using magic to make the hair of some of the girls at school prettier. Actually, that is a big plot line. Like, top 3.

Of course this asks the question, do you have to be like your parents, or can you sing yourself into a better position?

The rest of the cast is basically made up of people just to name drop. Like Mulan’s dauhgter, Lonnie (Dianne Doan), Aurora’s daughter, Audrey (Sarah Jeffery), Chad Charming (Jedidiah Goodacre), the Fairy Godmother (Melanie Paxson) and her daughter (Brenna D’Amico), and Doug! (Zachary Gibson), son of…Dopey. Sure. Whatever.

Family
Yeah, no one likes Beast when he goes human. Booo. Hiss.

Somehow before this point, I have already reached 600 words in the review. Shame, because I have a bunch more to go!

I was definitely surprised to hear music in this film, kind of came out of nowhere. It was mostly okay. Some songs were bad. The Song “If Only” was decent, however it featured the worst lip singing from Mel and featured a lot of flashbacks from the movie during it. The movie isn’t that long and the song happened halfway through the film, so there wasn’t really much to flashback, or a need at all.

It also had too many central characters, not knowing what to do with them. Carlos was afraid of dogs at the start, and then liked them? Okay, boring. Jay just…stole things for a little bit then played sports and also was sent to the background. Jafar probably had two whole lines and waste wasted. Cruella de Vil was turned into a crazy lady.

Speaking of de Vil, how in the fuck is that the best they have to work with? Not only does 101 Dalmations not even remotely fit in timeline wise with the rest of them (And Aladdin is a huge stretch), it is a lady who wanted to kill some dogs for their fur. They say she is one of the top evil people there, and that is just bananas. I cannot even begin to let that be any amount of believable.

The villains all live together in one house too. And literally no one is married outside of Belle/Beast. Each of these kids only knows about their evil parent, the other member just completely gone.

Descendants is an average to good concept for fiction, it truly is. But it seems they half-assed the whole film. If they kept it to just Mel/Evie, it could probably be a stronger film (but the male demographic!!). Too much wasted potential. They are apparently going to turn it into animated series later this year, which is a great place for it. With a cartoon some of these characters can actual gain some depth and not just background pieces to Mel.

1 out of 4.

Strange Magic

Where does one begin when talking about Strange Magic? Well, first of all, it basically came out of nowhere. There were two main “kid” movies out in January. Paddington, which had tons of press and was actually pushed a little bit from December, and Strange Magic which had maybe 1 poster hung up somewhere in America.

I mean seriously, I saw no trailers ever, nothing on TV, no screening events, no kiddy toy promotion with a major realtor or fast food store. Did anyone know this movie was happening? Oh, George Lucas apparently knew it was happening. It was a Lucasarts film, which is now owned by Disney, but apparently it has been in development/production for FIFTEEN YEARS.

Anything that takes that long has to have some bad moojoo on it. Remember Duke Nukem Forever? There is attempting to make sure everything is perfect and forcing a boulder up hill.

Troll
And then there is this awkwardly realistic and equally awkwardly not dude.

The movie begins with the (world?) divided into two lands, a fairy land that’s all light and happy, and a bog land that is dark and scary. Immediately you might be thinking of Epic or even Secret of the Wings, it is a popular trope. The movie then begins with a very familiar tune.

Then there is singing. Singing of old songs. What is happening. Oh, not only was this movie mysterious, but it was also a JUKEBOX MUSICAL. So many of the characters sing real popular-esque songs. However there is no theme here like in Mamma Mia and they are just all over the place.

Ugh. Anyways. Marianne (Evan Rachel Wood) is a fairy princess. She is going to get married to Roland (Sam Palladio) but finds him kissing another fairy on their wedding day. So she goes a bit gothic and swears to never love again. Years later, her sister Dawn (Meredith Anne Bull) is in love with everything and everyone, much to her annoyance. Roland is still around, trying to marry Marianne just to control the army and become a powerful ruler.

So what does Roland do? He convinces Sunny (Elijah Kelley), an elf with a crush on Dawn, to get a love potion made so that they both can use it and get what they want. The only person who can make a love potion is the Sugar Plum Fairy (Kristin Chenoweth), who was captured by the Bog King (Alan Cumming), because he hates love and love potions, or something.

I mean, he has a point. They are pretty rapey. Needless to say, shenanigans happen thanks to the Bog King also kidnapping Dawn after she gets hit with the potion. So back and forth they go, singing and dancing, and stopping overall bad stuff from happening. Hooray kids movies and learning to love again!

There is also Alfred Molina and Maya Rudolph voicing royal parents, and Peter Stormare and Bob Einstein voicing random shit.

Fight
First we battle in an epic fashion, and then we dance!

How much do you really want to hear strange covers of Sugar Pie Honey Bunch and Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)? You don’t, you are right. This movie is full of songs you might have got to sing for public school middle school chorus classes or hear all the time at karaoke bars. Not having a theme isn’t an issue. Moulin Rouge! had no theme for the songs and they kicked butt.

Honestly, this movie in a vague description sounds like something I would love. I love musicals. I don’t mind fairies. I like nice CGI movies. But somehow this movie managed to fire on zero cylinders. Nothing felt like it worked. Parts of the animation were nice, and other parts looked like complete shit. They had really good voice talent, and wasted it on one of the most boring lists I have ever seen. None of the songs are really trying, they are all super safe and lazy. I Want To Dance With Somebody? Great song. Terribly easy to put into one of these and force a context for though.

Ugh. It ended up not being funny, not looking very pleasing on the eyes, and even made me dislike singing. How that is possible, I won’t ever know. I mean, I even gave Walking On Sunshine a 2 out of 4. This one just felt like an awkward mess. Knowing that Disney now owns Lucasfilms, it must have been in the buyout that they had to help fund or release this movie, and they just tried to sneak it out hoping no one would notice.

0 out of 4.

The Boy Next Door

I know. I missed out on a lot of January movies this year. They are slowly trickling down to me though. And I need to watch them all too. How else can I make a worst of the year list if I don’t see some of the best potential films that January want to offer me?!

I already saw Taken 3. But now I get to see The Boy Next Door.

Title wise, I only have to compare it to The Girl Next Door. And despite how much my younger self was really really excited to watch it for…reasons. I was left disappointed and never looked back. Little did I know how January this movie would be.

Office
They had an exact replica of the room I write reviews in this movie!

Claire Peterson (Jennifer Lopez) is an English teacher at a high school. If her job profession didn’t bore you, the actress probably did. She is getting divorced from her husband (John Corbett), obviously, because that is really the only person she could get divorced from. He cheated. They have a teenage kid, Kevin (Ian Nelson). Ho hum.

Well, gossip time. A boy moved next door. Noah Sandborn (Ryan Guzman), just moved in with his grandpa in a wheelchair. He is going to help out. Such a nice guy. He also likes English Literature, like The Iliad. And he is friends with Kevin! And he helps out at the house too. And he apparently looks good naked.

Anyways. Claire and Noah have some of that sex thing. She was feeling bad. He was around. Kind of a mistake, since he is also in high school. Now in HER high school. Sex with a student is uncomfortable.

Especially when he transfers to her class. Starts hanging around a lot more. Starts getting threatening/agressive. Prints pictures of them naked together. You know, classic courting techniques. Turns out Noah has a not so spotless past. Mistakes have been made, and Noah might be a little bit too threatening. Dun dun dunn.

Also with Kristin Chenoweth as another teacher. She serves a role in this movie.

Creep
“Looks your in the kitchen. Allow me to grope your butt?”

The best way to indicate sleep through text is to just type the letter “Z” a lot. But I don’t think I could hold down that keyboard button long enough to indicate how much I would have rather slept than watch this movie. It didn’t even have the common courtesy to put me to sleep. My eyes were wide awake the entire time as I watched a terribly acted, terrible plotted, movie.

I can’t think of a single nice thing to say about it. Jennifer Lopez? Why the fuck is she in movies at all? Why were both the female leads singers in the first place? I mean, sure, Chenoweth has been decent in some things before, because at least she is in Musicals. But J-Lo ain’t in anything good. She doesn’t fit this movie at all, or her character.

It is uncomfortable, but not in a good way. It is uncomfortable because of just how pointless and shitty the whole film feels. It wasn’t ever scary, outside of knowledge that someone let this movie get made. Not only was it devoid of thrills, it was also devoid of any real risks. Anything to make it separate itself from straight to DVD horror films. I’d rather watch a straight to DVD horror film. At least someone of significance might at least die or something. Jeez.

0 out of 4.

Rio 2

Rio 2. Did it need to happen? The first film, Rio, told a complete story. I don’t remember how I felt about the movie initially, but I quickly grew to hate it.

That’s right, I now hate the first Rio. The songs are terrible, the story is dumb. The songs are really really terrible. After one listen, I knew I could live without hearing them again (but of course I did hear them again). But whatever, I don’t have to dwell on it.

But it got a sequel because it made money, makes sense. Now they have a family of birds, doing family stuff, and living in Brazil full time. At least this time the plot won’t be an inability to fly.

Family
No, this time it is an inability to be fly.

Tulio (Rodrigo Santoro) and Linda (Leslie Mann), the humans, are off doing human things. Roaming the Amazon rain forest, looking for cool shit. They stumble on some cool shit, but also some bad shit. I am literally done talking about them.

Needless to say, the bird type that Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) and Jewel (Anne Hathaway) are have a huge home in the middle of the rain forest, away from humans. I mean, after all, they had to come from somewhere right? That’s right, Hathaway actually voiced the same character for the sequel, unlike the travesty that occurred for Hoodwinked Too.

So they take their family and friends to find the lost tribe. Or whatever. Living in the Amazon! Yay! There they meet Jewel’s dad, Eduardo (Andy Garcia) and former lover I think, Roberto (Bruno Mars). Now that Blu knows how to fly, he has to learn how to really be a jungle bird if he wants to make sure his wife still loves him…?

Oh, and uhh. Nigel (Jemaine Clement) is back, wanting revenge. He also has a poisonous frog friend named Gabi (Kristin Chenoweth) who really loves him for whatever reason. And there are loggers. And there are parrots or something that share the forest with the Blue Mckaws.

All of the random ass bird and dog characters are also back (Jamie Foxx, George Lopez, Tracy Morgan, and Will i Am) and yes, they serve even less of a purpose in this movie.

Villains
These two, plus ant eater, plus parrots, plus loggers, means like, 10,000 villains.

Rio 2 is a strange movie. Like I just said, there are so many dang villains, it just felt excessive. Because of that fact, Nigel didn’t have a great send off. When his plan finally came true, it all was super rushed and then the movie ended.

The music for Rio 2 was a little bit better, but not amazing still. This franchise’s problem is singability. I don’t want to go and sing any of these songs later, just like the first one. Just all of them are so erratic. My favorite song was the Poison Love in which Chenoweth goes full Broadway crazy on hitting all sorts of notes. Yes, surprisingly, her character was the funniest of the whole film. She didn’t even have that much time in the movie either it felt like.

I think, somehow they went even more stereotypical than the first movie. There is even a big soccer like match with the birds, including announcers acting exactly as you’d expect.

Everything else was ehh. Was hard to keep paying attention to the film, due to how pointless the plot lines felt. I hope there isn’t a Rio 3 in the future, doing the Olympics or whatever in a couple of years. That will be stupid.

1 out of 4.

Family Weekend

Family Weekend I probably could have gone my whole life without seeing or even really knowing it existed. It wasn’t on my main dvd relese website, wasn’t in theaters, it is a film I’d have to have seen on accident.

So let’ just say that. Yeah. I saw it on accident. (Cough)

Bondage
But it appears to feature bondage, so it already has that going for it.

The Smith-Dungy family is pretty unique, and yes they are one of those families. You know. Free spirited. Kind of. Alright, everyone has a unique personality that is set to 11. Emily (Olesya Rulin) is the oldest daughter and a champion jump rope speed jumping champion. Just ask anyone, like her crush Chris (Chase Maser), how great she is. She just qualified for states this weekend! But don’t ask her family. They didn’t show up to her competition.

Fuckers.

Her mom (Kristin Chenoweth) is now super busy doing business stuff, always on the phone or texting about work. Her dad (Matthew Modine) is too free spirited, an artist, willing to talk about too much and is just in general forgetful. She has an older brother Jackson (Eddie Hassell), who is gay (/faking gay) and and artists. Lucinda (Joey King), a younger sister, who is really obsessed with acting out as characters from famous older films for some reason, and a younger brother who likes animals and has a perfect memory.

Well, Emily decides that her parents need to relearn what it means to be good parents, like they were before, and must undergo some nice reconditioning, tied up for a few days, before they stop being such dicks. Chloe Bridges is also in this movie.

Competitive Nature
I always knew jumping rope would lead to adultnapping.

For a random movie requested for me to see, it wasn’t all bad. No, the plot overall went exactly where I thought it would go, and all lessons got learned, but the journey to end had its own twists or turns.

Kind of. Now I am just being vague, and I apologize, but this might be the quintesential 2/4. Not 2 out of 4 for being average, but by having equal parts I liked and disliked, turning it average. The former version is just average throughout, never really fantastic or shitty.

Olesya was pretty believable as an overachiever finally snapping and really wanting to do good, without realizing she has reached almost insanity. Her siblings Joey King and Eddie Hassell are both immediately forgettable, but since they don’t go away, they reach annoying levels. The parents are both pretty unique and interesting in their own ways, but of course they set up the dad to be the cool one and the one who is more willing to change. Despite making him more likable to the viewer, they are (for a little bit) able to allow us to feel some sympathy for the mom.

The unfortunate downside of this film is none of it just feels real or natural. It all feels fake, it just feels like a movie. The acting isn’t incredible anywhere, so I don’t think these characters actually changed, which just ruins the ending for me (which was a let down on its own). Hard to describe, but just doesn’t work on the most basic level. Despite that, I still enjoyed the idea of the premise, and some parts.

How many typos are in this review?

2 out of 4.

Hit and Run

I am pretty sure I heard about Hit and Run first from Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell. Do you know them? They have been a couple for a few years, since they met on When In Rome. Both very delightful people that make me laugh. Well they wanted to do a movie together, damn it, where they can be in love on screen too!

FACE PUNCH
Fun, face punching, bloody love.

Annie (Bell) and Charles Bronson (Shepard) are living in the middle of no where California. They have been dating for a year, but they really do love each other so much. Heck, Annie has a PhD in Conflict Resolution. What? Yeah. But she is teaching dumb sociology because she can’t run her own program anywhere. Until now. Her boss (Kristin Chenoweth) has to make some cuts to the department, and she is too awesome for them. Luckily, she set her up with an interview at UCLA, to run her own program there and have a real job with real monies!

The only problem is the city. LA. Turns out Mr. Bronson is in the witness protection program, and yes, he is from LA. That is literally the worst possible city to have the job at.

But he doesn’t care. Screw it, he will drive her to the interview himself. It has been four years for him, it shouldn’t matter at this point. She knows he is in witness protection, so even if his secrets come up, she should accept it right? Nope. Not if he used to be the getaway driver for his bank robbing friends (Bradley Cooper, Joy Bryant, Ryan Hansen).

Unfortunately during this routine trip to LA for an interview, Annie’s ex boyfriend (Michael Rosenbaum) gets a bit jealous, always has been, and actually figures out his real identity through his cop brother (Jess Rowland) checking up his old car’s plates. So course he contacts his old buddies, who he ratted out and are now free (technicalities), causing a race to LA with lots of guns and crazy chase scenes. Not to mention the Marshall assigned to check in on Charles (Tom Arnold) going along for the ride as well.

Rape Jokes are Funny
Oh no, looks like the find them and have an uncomfortable sex talk scene!

Hooo boy. This movie ended up actually having a lot more car driving chase scenes than I thought. Nothing to the level of Fast and the Furious craziness, of course. No, those people use NAS and stuff. Just straight up old school racing is what it felt like, with a soundtrack to match. They were thankfully exciting.

I also need to give a lot of props to Tom Arnold, he hasn’t been doing as well on the humor, being mostly a spaz in all of his recent roles. Well, it is true for this one too, but it works really well for once.

I was annoyed every once in awhile, I thought Bell’s character didn’t make that much sense, based off of her background. I don’t think anyone would actually assume someone was lying to them by not telling them about their witness protection circumstances. Probably laws about that stuff! But I found it pretty funny, with some nice chase scenes. Some over the top, unbelievable characters too. The ending wasn’t my favorite, just felt a bit weird. But hey, most of it was awesome!

3 out of 4.

Into Temptation

I decided to try this movie out when I was browsing Jeremy Sisto‘s imdb page. The other was the dreadful Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Undead, but I figured with a title like Into Temptation, how could it be bad? If anything, might just be some super awkward soft porn thing, and I could have a hilarious review because of it.

Jeremy Sisto
Complete with Catholic priest role playing.

In the story, Jeremy Sisto is a Catholic priest, in some lame part of some city. He saved his Parish from going away, or something. He also is a bit unconventional, talking on subjects other guys wont touch. Trying to add jokes to his sermon. What have you. But in the first few minutes, a woman (Kristin Chenoweth) comes in for a confessional. She is a prostitute! Of course she was also raped by her step-dad, has lived a life of sin, and is also going to kill herself on her birthday.

All Sisto knows is the necklace she wears, as she gets out of there before he can see her face and talk to her.

So the movie is more or less Sisto trying to find Kristin, on his journey to the underworld, in order to help save her. Along the way he gets some spiritual advice from a higher up Catholic Father, played by Brian Baumgartner, or Kevin from The Office.

Kevinnnnn
Turns out he doesn’t always talk like “that”.

I’d say most of the movie is relied on Sisto’s acting for it to work. Everyonce and awhile we get a small scene with Kristin, who is usually alone, and we have to rely only on facial gestures and mannerisms. What this movie ends up being is a journey for Sisto’s character to be himself, a better man, and help others along the way, while finding out how to be a better priest. It was a very interesting movie, if not slowly paced. It also didn’t focus much at all on the religious aspect of it all, which is surprising. Pretty decent flick.

3 out of 4.