Tag: Michael Cera

Gloria Bell

Many years ago, I saw a trailer for a movie called Gloria. It was a Spanish movie, but it had a lot of buzz and it looked fun. I decided I would put an effort into watching it. I thought about it for a few weeks, then I forgot about it, and went on with my life.

A couple of years ago, a different film came out called A Fantastic Woman. You may have heard of it, it won some awards. I definitely made sure to see it, given its nomination, and I saw it was by the director of Gloria. “Oh yeah! Gloria!” That movie I meant to see and forgot about. I should get on that and see it eventually. And then I forgot about it.

And then, finally, I got an invite to see Gloria Bell. That sounds familiar. And sure enough the trailer brings back the memories of the Gloria trailer, song and all. Oh no, an American remake? Sort of.

Does it count as an American remake if the remake is done by the same director and in his vision? Does it automatically make it inferior still?

Well, in this case, probably. 
Gloria Bell (Julianne Moore) is in her upper middle ages, basically old, without being, you know, old. She has kids, they are adults and starting their families. She is divorced, she works, she likes disco, and she wants to have a fun life.

But something keeps getting in the way. You know, herself. She sees so many faults in others, and her anxieties get in the way of finding happiness.

Despite this, she finds Arnold (John Tuturro), a man who likes disco and is also divorced. This feels like true love, in her later live, but there are issues. Issues with Arnold’s family and their dependence on him. It gets in the way of their happiness. And no matter what, he can’t abandon his kids and ex just for happiness.

So what’s a girl to dance? I dunno. Dance, dance, dance the night away.

Also starring Michael Cera, Holland Taylor, Brad Garrett, and Caren Pistorius.

Ah yes, Vegas, city of love, city by the bay./em>

Okay, technically, I don’t know if Gloria Bell is worse than Gloria, since I haven’t seen Gloria. And unfortunately, now that I have seen Gloria Bell, I probably won’t see Gloria ever. It might be better. It might be the same. I don’t know and won’t know because Gloria Bell has turned me so far off from this story, that the last thing I want to see is the story again, but this time with subtitles.

Basically, this is a film that is inspired by the song Gloria. It is a nice song, very catchy, and they use it in the film. And that is the whole story. There isn’t much else of depth. It is not only frustrating to watch this character act that way, but it is boring. I never feel any reason to hope better for her, given her ability to dig her own holes.

Sure being lonely sucks, but she probably just has to be lonely it looks like.

Gloria Bell is forgettable, and bad. I don’t know if it is actually as bad as my rating, but I did feel like hours of my life were wasted at the end.

0 out of 4.

Molly’s Game

Aaron Sorkin Sorkin sorkin. If you would have told me he never directed a movie before I would have raised my finger in the air and declared “Oh no! He must have!” Sure he is known for being a writer and a great writer. But I just can’t imagine him never directing anything. Especially given the number of TV shows he has worked on.

But alas. The truth is sometimes hard to swallow, and usually that phrase is for much bigger events than this one.

Despite the fact that this is an original Sorkin directed film and of course, writer, it is unfortunately based on a true story. A true story that was written about in a book with the same name, Molly’s Game. And so even though he wrote the screenplay, he based it off of someone else’s words, and maybe the dialogue would be affected in some regards.

Or even worse, maybe Sorkin will get distracted by other things while having to direct as well.

Molly (Jessica Chastain) was very close to heading to the US Olympics as a downhill skier, doing the moguls. Her father (Kevin Costner) was an intense man, who wanted his kids to be athletes and great at school, constantly pushing them to achieve greatness at all costs. He was a bit of a dick. But Molly didn’t qualify due to a freak unlikely accident, and he life was forever changed.

Instead of the Olympics, Molly found herself putting off law school, living off of her friend’s couch until she found some job and some life experience. It led her to becoming the personal assistant of Dean King (Jeremy Strong), an asshole, a piece of shit, but she got money so whatever. This led her to running a weekly poker game he was hosting, which featured big celebrities, CEOs, high money people. It gave her a lot more in tips, so Molly began to learn the art of poker, about being a host, so that eventually she could do this on her own.

Thanks to the help of a mysterious celebrity (Michael Cera), eventually she got her foot in the door, ran a bigger game, with higher stakes, more tipping, and all legal. And yet, years later, she is arrested despite no games in a long time, with connections to mobsters, and she needs legal help to get her out of the jam (Idris Elba). Basically, a lot of shit is going down, we got flashbacks, we got a slight mystery, and we got sexy card game shenanigans and stories and gossip.

Also starring a ton of people, some playing unnamed celebrities, some CEOs, some attractive people in general. This includes Natalie Krill, Stephanie Herfield, Bill Camp, Madison McKinley, Justin Kirk, J.C. MacKenzie, Graham Greene, Chris O’Dowd, Angela Gots, and Brian d’Arcy James.

I’d let Idris Elba represent me in court, even if in real life he doesn’t know a damn thing.

Damn it, and now another recent movie has made me want to read the book. First Wonder, then The Disaster Artist, and now Molly’s Game. Although a little bit less interested in this book, as I feel like the movie must have done a great job of explaining the topic of the book. And I have fear that the narration of Molly’s Game, which is assumed to be book quotes, has been made better by Sorkin instead of left alone.

Not to mention I know that reading this book will not secretly identify any actors or celebrities who were parts of these games. These things were combed over by insiders already, and since I know jack shit outside of just movie gossip, I got absolutely nothing. Especially since this happened over a decade ago or whatever.

In terms of acting, Chastain does a really good job. She is powerful, assertive, and confident for the most part, a strong leading lady. Her cleavage plays a large role in this film as well, definitely important to the plot. Cleavage hasn’t been this important to a plot since Erin Brockovich, and this one is definitely more important. It deserves its own tag credit.

Elba is fine as the lawyer, given a lot more of the fun moments early on, and gets at least two great speeches near the end. The ending is where we get a lot more Sorkin level dialogue between the characters, especially between Chastain and Costner (who has done his best work in several years with this role).

Honestly, a fun story, it is gripping at times, it was very popular half a decade ago, yet still not quite big news. The only issues I probably have with it involve the direction. After the intro, which was wonderful, the story felt really weird. We had a lot of strange camera choices, fade overs, switching of timelines. It eventually started to come together, but it didn’t feel very coherent and great until after the poker games were already going.

Sorkin’s next film is called The Politician, also a true story. Huh, stories about the law and politics, this is strange new territory for Sorkin.

3 out of 4.

Sausage Party

I wanted to see Sausage Party, I honestly did. I loved the first trailer, avoided all other spoilers, and wrote it on my calendar. But then real life made me miss it and I had to wait weeks to see it. Having kids doesn’t help.

But I didn’t mean to see Sausage Party for today’s review. No, I went to the theater to see Hell or High Water, everyone told me I had to! Well, word of mouth is powerful and it was in a small dinky theater and sold out. Thankfully, Sausage Party was roughly the same time starting, so I easily went ther and just moved it up my schedule a couple weeks.

Hey. Sweet. Now I can have some laughs and review two animated films in a row this week! And also dick jokes. Dick jokes, sex jokes, death jokes, stoner jokes. Hilarious.

I haven’t seen food party this much since Foodfight!

Frank (Seth Rogen) is a sausage. Not just any sausage. A horny sausage, ready to fuck. He has some other wiener palls, like Carl (Jonah Hill), Troy (Anders Holm), and Barry (Michael Cera), who is a bit deformed and smaller than normal. His package is right next to a nice package of buns, including Brenda (Kristen Wiig), his soul mate.

Or fuck mate. They really wanna screw. They want to get picked together by one of the Gods to go into the Great Beyond, outside of the supermarket. And soon is “Red, White, and Blue” day, so their chances of getting picked are high! And of course, the Gods have spoken, and they were chosen together to live out their wildest fantasies.

But then the unthinkable happens. The Honey Mustard (Danny McBride) was returned and he went crazy. He said the Great Beyond was a lie. Everything outside was terrible. And he caused a cart accident. Food went flying, Disaster. Frank and Brenda were left outside the cart to survive on their own. With Sammy Bagel Jr. (Edward Norton) and Kareem Abdul Lavash (David Krumholtz), who keep fighting.

Can they determine the truth of the Great Beyond? Or were they punished by the Gods for touching tips? How will their friends survive in the outside world? Can I ask more questions about the food sex?

Also featuring Bill Hader as a Native American stereotype, Salma Hayek as a taco, Craig Robinson as grits, Paul Rudd as a nerdy sales clerk/jerk, James Franco as a stoner, and Nick Kroll as a big douche.

Some say a big douche is just the roll that Nick Kroll was born to play.

Sausage Party at its core is an insane film. Apparently it came out just wondering what a film would be like if food had feelings (something Pixar hadn’t touched on yet), and Rogen realized it would be an incredibly fucked up film. And a fucked up film is what we got.

It is basically the most adult animated film since South Park: Bigger, Longer, & Uncut and even has a musical number! And by adult humor, I don’t mean sophisticated tax jokes, but you know, sex, language and drugs. So 14 year old humor, if you will.

It will make you cringe, make you laugh, and maybe make you cry. The references are out of control, including an amazing visual from Saving Private Ryan. It was constantly surprising with the direction it went, including two different turn of events near the end. You know, when they fight for freedom and celebrate their potential freedom.

Because like I said earlier, they just wanted to fuck. That’s life in a nutshell.

Sausage Party is raunchy and honestly a film I can imagine watching and hiding from my own kids for years to come.

3 out of 4.

Paper Heart

Is this the real life? Or is this just fantasy?

That is the question that you have to wonder sometimes with Documentaries. One of the reasons why I distrust them. How much was naturally caught on camera and how much was set up? I have a hard time believing that Bully was actual bullying, for that reason.

Paper Heart intends to be a bit gray, though.

We are told that this documentary is an idea made by Charlene Yi, who claims that she has never been in love and doubt she ever will be. So she wants to go around, asking people their opinion on love, from her friends (Seth Rogen, Demetri Martin, Martin Starr, and more) to people who have good stories around America. She also goes and talks to the quick wedding people in Las Vegas, tries on a Bridal gown, and more!

Oh, and she also falls in love during this documentary.

Love. Or something like that.

Good timing huh? She meets Michael Cera, yes, that Michael Cera. He is awkward, but he likes her and tries to get her to go out on a date and eventually succeeds. Jake Johnson, who goes by Nick in this documentary helps out of course because Cera is his bud. Once their relationship starts to progress, Nick decides it needs to be a part of the documentary too, because it fits the theme.

But is this a real romance, or is this whole thing just a super awkward and realistic mockumentary?

I would say while watching it, it is pretty hard to say. I of course looked it up afterward to figure out if it was all true, all fake, or somewhere in between. I won’t tell you what, because you can look it up yourself yo.

What I can say is that everything about this at least felt real. The stories that couples told about their love were very cute, despite the awkward puppet show during them. Everything felt genuine, and it made me feel kind of sappy.

When I bought this movie, I didn’t even know it was a documentary until I saw a trailer for like, a year later. But I like what I saw in this film, even if I have a hard time explaining just what it is.

3 out of 4.

Crystal Fairy

Shit, I don’t even know the name of this movie. On IMDB, on the internet, on other reviews, on wiki, everyone lists it as just plain old Crystal Fairy.

But the DVD and DVD Cover state Crystal Fairy & The Magical Cactus. Who do I believe?!

The reason I am watching this movie is because of the director, Sebastian Silva. He made a movie, in Chile, with Michael Cera as one of the lead roles, named Mirror Mirror. While he was there living with his family, Silva I guess decided to do another movie. This one, still set in Chile, but with Cera as the lead role. I guess this director dude just really really likes Michael Cera.

Who wouldn’t with a smile like that?

As I said, this movie takes place in Chile, and like the other other movie that takes place in Chile (Aftershock), there is only one white character with a bunch of Chilean friends. Jamie (Michael Cera), is your typical American tourist. Not much is given on what he does normally, how long he is there, or what. But we know he likes to party, wants to drugs, and even more so, drink from the San Pedro cactus that grows in this area. It is a bit rare, I guess, but it might have some hallucinogens in it if you make it right (like, 9 hours of cooking), and it is supposedly like a trip like no other.

He was heading on a few day trip with some friends, Champa (Juan Andres Silva), Lel (Jose Miguel Silva), and Pilo (Agustin Silva), to acquire a cactus and drink it on a beach and experience that feeling, but the night before hand he meets Crystal Fairy (Gaby Hoffman).

While on crack, he loves her and invites her along, despite his friends warning him not to. Well he does. And he regrets it.

She is a free spirit with no money and he finds her annoying. But his friends, to be frank are finding him a bit annoying as well. Fucking Americans.

But really. Will his trip end with the trip he has always wanted? We will see.

Did you miss the naming convention of the other guys on the trip? Yep. All of the director’s sons.

So the director likes Michael Cera, and puts his sons in his movies. I mean, Agustin Silva was in Magic Magic as a guy named Agustin. Crazy.

But Gaby Hoffman is the weird one. She looks familiar, and I don’t know why. So I look it up! She was the little girl in Field of Dreams. The one who helps with the creepy prophecies. Well, you will be happy to know she is super naked in this film, a lot multiple times, fully, and if that doesn’t make you feel awkward knowing full well you know her most famous role, then I don’t know what will.

I believe this movie did a good job of giving a realistic portrayal of a trip which is basically the last 30 minutes of the film. I hated Cera and Hoffman, annoyed equally at them, and their behavior towards each other, which means they are acting their roles perfectly.

But I can’t help feel like this movie just didn’t really do anything, despite the good acting, and the almost interesting story line. I wanted more. Not more awkward scenes, just more reason to care.

2 out of 4.

Magic Magic

Magic Magic. I like magic. I hope this movie is about magic.

You know, I sometimes watch movies just because there is magic in the title. That is why I watched Magic Mike, obviously. So this has double the magic, which is why I doubly chose to watch this movie.

But in all honesty, you know I am actually watching it for this creepy mother fucker right here.

Chile is a strange place, and that is what Magic Magic has really taught me.

Alicia (Juno Temple) is a young woman traveling to Chile with her cousin Sara (Emily Browning) who she hasn’t seen in some time. Alicia isn’t from the area, but Sara is going to school there, and even has a boyfriend, Agustin (Agustin Silva).

Well, as soon as they set off on a mini vacation to a cool house on a lake, Sara has to leave. She apparently has a test that she has to take, or she will fail the class. Bad timing. Alicia wants to stay with Sara, because she doesn’t know any of these people, but they all convince her to come along and it will be fun. Sure.

Alicia does not have a fun time. She drops Barbara’s (Catalina Sandino Moreno) bag in the water early on, so Barbara might dislike her. Brink (Michael Cera) keeps hitting on her, but she thinks he is a sadist.

Basically, everyone is out to get Alicia, and she doesn’t feel like they are the best sorts of people. And her friend has abandoned her! For more than a day like she promised. What the hell Sara. THESE PEOPLE MIGHT TRY TO KILL HER. AND YOU ARE GONE. FOR FUCKS SAKE SARA.


Look at him, staring into her back like that.

Sorry, I went a little bit off the edge there at the end of that plot outline.

Kind of like how Sara starts freaking out. First small gradual freak outs, but over time, full on freak out mode. See, I modeled it after the movie, you’re welcome.

This movie is pretty weird, and it really doesn’t have magic in it, and definitely not two forms of magic. Allegedly psychology classes watch it to try and determine what is wrong with Sara, but I doubt that. This movie literally came out mid August, 2013, so as of now, they can’t possibly have that info to back it up. Wikipedia is lying.

I think the acting from Juno Temple and Michael Cera here are incredible. Cera is creepy while also maintaining a nice guy attitude towards things, while Temple feels like her life is crumbling away from her. She is only on vacation for like three or four days, to give the movie even more context.

The ending was surprising, but if you pay enough attention to the details, you can see how and why it happened. However, it still felt a bit cut off and left unfinished by the end, bugging me pretty hardcore. There is also a lot of Spanish in this movie, but no subtitles, so maybe it is meant for the viewers to relate better to Sara throughout, in an unfamiliar area.

Overall, it is just okay, and would be best seen for the pretty good acting. The plot and ending could have been a bit better.

2 out of 4.

This Is The End

It is hard to pull off a movie like This Is The End. The actors end up playing fictional versions of themselves, setting the film in “the real world” where the stars are stars and the random people in the background are real random people. I should also mention this film is part of my Apocalypse Week.

In fact, I’d say some of the funniest cameos in history have been actors playing fictional versions of themselves, such as Neil Patrick Harris in the Harold and Kumar trilogy. So here we have a movie using only that joke and setting it during the Apocalypse? I smell comedy gold.

Michael Cera smells pussy.
Jay Baruchel (Jay Baruchel) is headed back to LA to visit his friend Seth Rogen (Seth Rogen). They used to be great friends, both being Canadian and growing up together, but now Seth is a lot bigger in Hollywood than Jay! So Seth he has new friends and seems to have moved on. Thus, Jay hates LA and all of Seth’s new friends.

But after getting high and chilling, Seth really wants to go to James Franco’s (James Franco) house for a killer party. He has a new place, it is supposed to be off the hook, and he promises to not leave Jay alone. They meet some of Seth’s new friends, like the ultra way too nice Jonah Hill (Jonah Hill), and the charismatic Craig Robinson (Craig Robinson). This might sound like a love story between Seth and Jay and in a way, it is.

Unfortunately during the party the apocalypse happens! Blue beams come out of the sky and take away the good members of society (meaning the actors are all left behind of course), leaving only the sinners and scum of the Earth left to wallow. We also get fires, sinkholes, darkness, ash, and maybe even the spawns of Satan roaming the streets, killin’ everybody in sight. Yay!

Too bad they also have Danny McBride (Danny McBride) stuck in their house, being the general unpleasant sourpuss that he is. For those curious, yes, he is identical to his Kenny Powers self.

We also a huge load of celebrity cameos, including Michael CeraEmma WatsonRihannaKevin HartAziz AnsariMindy KalingChristopher Mintz-Plasse and more.

This movie was very aware, very funny, and very awesome. It had thrills, chills, laughs and gas. It wasn’t a straight up “stoner comedy” either, which was a big fear of mine. Was there drug usage? Yes. But it wasn’t the main plot point. After all, supplies run low really quickly during an apocalypse.

The last “meta”-esque movie that I enjoyed this much was Tropic Thunder. Although it wasn’t the actors playing themselves, it was at least actors playing other actors and extreme versions of actor cliches. However, I expect this movie won’t lead to anyone getting a nomination for Best Supporting Actor.

Long story short, I laughed constantly throughout this movie. I am sure over half of it is ad-libbed too, and yet I was still surprised at times at how far they went. I am excited to buy this on Blu-Ray to see all the outtakes. In fact, I bet even the commentary will be pretty dang awesome. It should also be noted that Michael Cera was even better in his small cameo than the trailer let on. If I had to change one thing, I would have added a lot more Danny McBride, who was by and large the funniest part of the film.

This Is The End isn’t for everyone, but it was almost perfect for me.

4 out of 4.

Year One

There comes a time in Cinematic History where certain movies seem to leap bounds and fountains over the rest of the movies in that year. Unfortunately, these films are not always recognized for their greatness, and therefore never watched, like Little Shop Of Horrors.

In 2009, with such treasures like Avatar, Ice Age: Dawn Of The Dinosaurs, Twilight: New Moon, and 2012, one film was overlooked. One film was passed on the side of the round (or trampled by the lazy). That film of course, was Year One.


No, I won’t actually shout.

This film is set in history, maybe roughly 1 AD, but that is a rough estimate.

In it, we have Zed (Jack Black), a bad hunter, and Oh (Michael Cera), an okay gatherer. Zed is feeling unloved, so he eats from the forbidden fruit tree to gain all the knowledge of good and evil! Well, that goes badly, and they are kicked out of the tribe. Now he will never get it on with Maya (June Diane Raphael), and Oh won’t be able to impress Eema (Juno Temple).

On their travels, they find that the world is actually a much bigger place than they thought. They run into Cain (David Cross) and Abel (Paul Rudd), and things (obviously) escalate from there.

They find themselves on run from an angry village, learn about the wheel, and end up in Sodom and Gomorrah where orgies occur nightly, and lets not forget about the sodomy. They not only join the city guard, but also become trusted slaves and chosen ones of the royalty. Queen Inanna (Olivia Wilde) takes a personal interest in Zed, to figure out just what the priest is up to.

Can the Chosen One and Oh save the day with their now stunning intellect? Or you know, will they just be sacrificed for rain? Also featuring Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Vinnie Jones, and Hank Azaria.

Don’t make that face. Vinnie Jones isn’t that bad.

I am agog, I am aghast, that I took this long to see this film. Especially when I bought it about a year ago and have had no real good reason to avoid it (other than, you know, other movies to watch). But this may not only be the finest movie I have seen with Jack Black, but Michael Cera as well, and he was in Superbad! Shit. That is why I had to move up my review o this movie. Originally it would be in two weeks, sine I am behind on posting current theater movies, but I really couldn’t let another day go by.

One major reason to talk about this movie is David Cross, who probably gives an Oscar worthy performance as Cain. He has to live with the guilt of killing his brother, living a life of sin and sadness, while at the same time, dealing with two primitive numbskulls who don’t understand how “modern” society work. I bet the only reason he was overlooked is because it is a comedy, and outside of Robert Downey Jr. in Tropic Thunder, they usually ignore them.

Now I know why she has taken on a lot of bad roles since 2009. She just can’t live up to her past great work in this movie.

Year One reminds me of why I love Olivia Wilde, despite her recent mess ups. What a beautiful creature.

Basically, if you had seen Year One (and statistics show that you probably have not), you would know that every line is an ounce of wit, that popularized Arrested Development back in the day, and currently categories some great comedies like Modern Family and Archer.

Yes, it is historically inaccurate, but that should be a given when it also includes stories from The Bible.

I think I am going to have to forgo going to any future movies until Jack Black and Michael Cera are put in another movie together. Their chemistry (bromance?) seems to have towered over any comedic duo that I have seen before. Yes, even more so than David Spade and Chris Farley.

This movie changed my life in more ways than one (I’d say about four). Hopefully one day it can change your life too.

4 out of 4.

Scott Pilgrim vs The World

Here is an example of a biased review. Yesss!

Scott Pilgrim vs The World is a movie based off of a 6 part graphic novel series more or less called… Scott Pilgrim. The novels were one of my first forays into owning graphic novels and reading them, when there was still only the first four out. By the time the sixth one came out, I was able to go to a midnight release of the book and read it all before I went to sleep. Then the movie came out a few weeks later, and crammed all of the stories into one movie. And it was epic.

Pilgrim fight #1
You might even say I am in lesbians with it.

Scott Pilgrim (Michael Cera) is our main boy, and he lives in the mythical land of Toronto, Canada. He is 22, and living with his gay roommate Wallace (Kieran Culkin), and has little to no prospects outside of his band, Sex Bob-omb. The lead singer and guitar player is Stephen (Mark Webber) and the drummer is Kim (Alison Pill, and dated Scott a long time ago). So what is Scott doing? Dating a HIGH SCHOOL CHICK, named Knives Chau (Ellen Wong) and she becomes a groupie along with Young Neil (Johnny Simmons).

But then he meets Ramona Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), a cool American chick and wants her so bad. What he doesn’t know, is that to actually be with her, he has to first defeat her seven evil exes in order. What?! Yes. Including an emo, a movie star (Chris Evans! In his 5th comic movie role), a vegan, a girl, twins, and Gideon (Jason Schwartzman). Can he defeat the exes? Can he handle his own exes? Does he know how hot his sister (Anna Kendrick in the movie) is? Also Aubrey Plaza is in here, more famous for Parks and Rec.

Of course, as it is a six book to one movie adaption, a lot of fun cool stuff had to be left out. Like my favorite panel in a comic ever.


Hopefully you can tell already that a lot of the movie is kind of video game-y. If you ever played older ones, this movie has a lot of shout outs for you. Parts are written like the comic as well, and full of smaller inside jokes, but they don’t take away from anything if you’ve never read the books. It is also a very fast paced movie, so time should fly by pretty quickly while watching it. Also, hilarious.

Fight scenes are great. Characters are great. And you won’t be able to guess how it all ends. If I had one real gripe, it is that there won’t be anymore movies. And they never made any “save point” jokes. For a first time watcher, a lot of the names thrown at you at the start may confuse you too. But hey, get over it.

4 out of 4.