Ida

ida_ver2_xlgReleased a year after its initial debut in Poland Ida tells the story of Anna, a young nun who is about to take her vows of poverty chastity and obedience.  She is told by a sister nun to visit her last living relative an aunt named Wanda.  From there Anna learns that her name is not Anna but Ida and that she is not Catholic as she has studied to be but was born into the Jewish faith.  Through traveling with Wanda to find where her parents are buried Ida experiences the world for the first time and throughout that journey she learns about her past and who she is as a person. Continue reading

A Million Ways To Die In The West

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Seth MacFarlane proved his skills as a filmmaker and artist with the film Ted.  Ted was a film about a toy teddy bear who comes to life through a little boy’s wish.  The bear grows with the boy throughout his journey to adulthood.  Macfarlane voiced the raunchy crazy teddy bear who couldn’t grow up and Mark Wahlberg played the adult version of the young boy as an adult.  This film was a funny film about how growing up with a best friend doesn’t always mean growing together.  A Million Ways to Die in the West is the opposite of what made Ted great.  There is nothing that makes the lead character worth investing your time in. Continue reading

X-Men: Days of Future Past

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X-Men: Days of Future Past is the perfect transition film for those audience members who love the original X-Men cast and have yet to like the cast of X-Men First Class.  Based on the award winning comic two issue miniseries publiched in 1981 the plot of Days of Future Past involves Wolverine’s consciousness going back in time to prevent the assassination of Dr. Bolivar Trask.  Trask created the Sentinels who in the future are the machines that hunt down mutants and those who have the possibility to birth a mutant. Continue reading

Amour

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Amour is one of those movies that will leave a lasting impression on its audience, in the same way that love never fades from those who have truly felt it. Amour is directed by acclaimed Austrian director Michael Haneke, most well known for directing disturbing material (like Funny Games or The White Ribbon) that borders on horrific and possibly psychologically damaging. In Amour, Heineke goes a completely, more subtle route. Continue reading

Les Misérables

les_miserables_ver3Les Misérables is, among other things, the story of Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) and his road to redemption in nineteenth-century France. The film opens with Valjean a prisoner, because nineteen years ago he stole bread to try and save the life of his sister’s son. In prison, he is known as Prisoner 24601 to the menancing Inspector Javert (Russell Crowe). Eventually, Valjean is released from bondage and decides to reinvent himself as a businessman, establishing a factory that employs indigent women. One of these women, Fantine, is thrown out on the street for concealing an illegitimate child. She turns to prostitution to support her daughter, and eventually dies of consumption, leaving the little girl behind. Valjean, learning of Fantine’s destitution, promises to find and support the child, all the while pursued by the dogged Javert, who believes Valjean is “once a criminal, always a criminal.” Continue reading

The Sessions


sessions_ver5_xlgThe Sessions
 is one of those movies that just stays in your head for weeks. John Hawkes portrays Mark O’Brien, a man who lives inside an iron lung. Mark caught polio as a child and cannot function properly outside the iron lung for long periods of time. A poet and working journalist, Mark’s goal at the start of the film is to explore the topic of sex and the disabled. Upon realizing that the subjects he has been interviewing aren’t giving him the information he’s looking for, Mark decides to get in touch with a sex surrogate to experience sex himself — at age 38 — for the first time. Continue reading

Wreck-It Ralph


wreckit_ralph_ver6_xlgWreck-It Ralph,
 the latest CGI film from Disney, shares a name with its protagonist, who happens to be the antagonist of a retro arcade game called Fix-It Felix Jr. In the game, a twist on Donkey Kong, Ralph (voiced by John C. Reilly) climbs to the top of an apartment building, smashing windows and walls, until Fix-It Felix Jr. (Jack McBrayer) arrives and makes repairs, ultimately defeating Ralph. After 30 years of playing out this same scenario, Ralph is tired of being the bad guy and yearns for the acceptance and glory of being a hero. The townspeople in the Fix-It Felix Jr. video game do not respect Ralph’s ambitions, so he breaks a cardinal rule of the gaming universe and begins “game jumping” in hopes of finding of a game that will allow him to become the hero he wants to be. Continue reading