One Line Description: A father goes undercover to get his son released from prison by gaining conviction of drug dealers.
This was the first movie with The Rock that I recall seeing all the way through. The premise seemed cool, and I expected a pretty off the hook action movie. That is not what this was. I get The Rock’s desire to shake the typecasting of “meathead action star”, but that’s not what I pay to see. This movie was good, but because the expectations were more action, it fell flat. This movie would have made a lot more sense with a 1995 Harrison Ford, or Dennis Quaid, or someone who couldn’t have just beat up everyone else in the movie. If you can get past the fact that this isn’t a typical The Rock action movie, you might enjoy it.
The Rundown (2003)
One Line Description: A bounty hunter searches for his boss’ son in the Amazon.
This movie is exactly the kind of movie with The Rock I was looking for. Ridiculous, over the top action scenes, with as little believability as possible. It was a very fun movie, even though the story was complete garbage. Sean William Scott continues to prove to me that he has a very low success rate as he failed to deliver any quality here. I have always had a crush on Rosario Dawson, but her resume is full of stinkers, and she doesn’t add a ton to this. This one is the very definition of a popcorn action movie, and is definitely a movie that requires no thinking.
The Slammin’ Salmon (2009)
One Line Description: A restaurant owner demands his wait staff raise $20,000 in one night so he can pay off a gambling debt.
The Broken Lizard comedy troupe created one of my all-time favorite movies, Super Troopers, before doing the mediocre Club Dread and then stepping it back up with Beerfest. This movie, however, is by far the worst of the bunch. This movie wasn’t funny at any point, and tried so hard at some points that I actually felt bad. There are a whole bunch of “that guys” that popup along the way, and Michael Clarke Duncan plays the restaurant owner. This movie could very well explain why Broken Lizard’s next movie, Freeloaders went totally unnoticed (although they weren’t stars of it). Slammin’ Salmon might represent the end of their mini-run, and that might be OK after suffering through this turd.
The Campaign (2012)
One Line Description: Two corrupt CEOs try to get their puppet elected to public office over the multi-term incumbent.
I am not a Will Ferrell fan. I had said it before, and it seems unlikely at this point that this will change. I continue to enjoy Zach Galifianakis most of the time. I had very low expectations for this movie, and it was definitely not great, but I laughed a few times. The fact that Dylon McDermott, Dan Aykroyd and John Lithgow have roles makes it even weirder. It felt like a very typical Will Ferrell movie and that’s why I wasn’t surprised Adam McKay had a hand in writing it. I know people like both Ferrell and Galifianakis who didn’t like this one, but that surprises me, because it had some moments. I think if you like those guys and the kind of movies they make you will enjoy this one.
The Station Agent (2003)
One Line Description: A shy “little person” inherits a train depot where a man and woman try to befriend him.
I only heard of this movie because of this throwaway scene from Entourage, but it’s very good. Peter Dinklage has risen to prominence over the last couple of years as Tyrion on Game of Thrones, but this movie was a decade ago. Dinklage is wonderful as the title character who moves away when his boss dies and the store he worked at was closed. He meets a food truck driver (Bobby Carnivale) who is overly friendly, and a divorcee (Patricia Clarkson) who is a little frantic. The three of them build an amazing bond in this movie that is very enjoyable to watch. The movie did remind me a bit of Treme in a sense, it’s very much about “people” and there isn’t much story here. There’s not really a build up to a big moment, so much as just character evolution. Some people don’t like that, but I found it to be wonderful. Michelle Williams and John Slattery popped up along the way as well. I really liked this movie.