The Hangover 3 (2013)
One Line Description: The Wolfpack returns for one more adventure of debacuhery and hijinks.
It appears that many people disliked The Hangover 2 for not being as funny, and recycling the same plot as the original. I personally loved that part of it, and the movie as a whole, and would stand by the fact that it’s only slightly less enjoyable than the original. The third, and suppoesdly last, movie goes a different direction with the plot, although it still finds a wait to eliminate Justin Bartha from being involved.
I am sure I am not alone, but I would have greatly preferred one last “forgotten night” story as opposed to the lame narrative they went with1. The movie is also (not unexpectedly) very heavy on Ken Jeong. Like Steve Stifler in the American Pie movies, Jeong’s character is best left in moderation. Overall, it was entertaining and funny, but by far the weakest of the three. I will continue to consider Due Date to be the Alan spinoff that would have been better than this.
This Is the End (2013)
One Line Description: Real life celebrities take shelter in James Fanco’s house to try and survive the rapture.
The draw to this movie is that all of the characters (Seth Rogen, James Franco, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson, Jay Baruchel and Danny McBride) are suppoesd to be playing “themselves”. The pre-rapture scenes are great, and this whole movie could have just been the party at Franco’s house and it would have been fine. Michael Cera steals the show early on. It has some jumpy moments at times when it switches from raunchy comedy to horror movie. There were tons of laugh out loud moments, and it was the funniest movie I have seen in the theater since The Hangover 2 at least. The characters making fun of their real-life selves was very amusing. There is no doubt though that this movie will only appeal to people who like the kind of comedy these actors are known for.
Spoiler in this footnote2.
We Bought a Zoo (2011)
One Line Description: A widower moves his emotionally affected children to a small zoo that is nearly bankrupt.
Matt Damon is arguably my favorite actor ever. Scarlett Johansson is both beautfiul and someone who draws me to movies3. Thomas Hayden Church (Wings, Sideways) is an underrated supporting actor. Cameron Crowe directed it. And it’s about a zoo! This movie seemed can’t miss, and yet it’s really not good. Something about Matt Damon’s performance seemed very off, and definitely not up to par with his other performances. Cameron Crowe has clearly lost his fastball4, and this one falls really flat. It’ boring, slow and never provides enough of a hook to keep people invested. The payoff at the end didn’t make up for the journey. Disappointing to say the least. Bad to awful if you are feeling especially negative.
Man of Steel (2013)
One Line Description: Kal El is sent to Earth by his father, and has to fight his own species to defend it.
The second attempt this decade to reboot Superman after the great success of Batman and the Marvel movies, it makes sense. Superman is played by Henry Cavill who I had never seen before, but apparently he was the original choice for the Twilight franchise as well as a finalist for James Bond in Casino Royale. He looks the part, but doesn’t offer much else. I understand Superman doesn’t have the personality of Batman or Iron Man, but Cavill is so bland there is just no substance. Kevin Costner and Amy Adams (5 Oscar nominations between them) were vastly underutilized, particularly Adams, who presumably will have much bigger roles in the sequels certain to happen.
But my biggest gripe is the the increasing trend with these ’10s action movies, the 40 minute battle. It just drags on way too long, especially when everyone knows Superman will win. There are only so many buildings that can be demolished before it’s enough already. The two people I was with loved it, but I am continually finding out that these movies just aren’t for me.
- In fact, if you stay after the credits there is a scene that teases such a night happened, and I continue to argue that should have been the first scene of the movie [↩]
- The big screen return of the Backstreet Boys!!! [↩]
- Love her in The Avengers, In Good Company, The Nanny Diaries, Match Point and Lost in Translation [↩]
- I thought Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Almost Famous were enough for me to see every Crowe movie from now until eternity [↩]