I saw a lot of movies in 2011 and thought I'd sum them all up in a post. These are in no certain order.
I was pleasantly surprised during the film. The villain was very "villainesque", we were given a pretty rainbow bridge to look at several times until the dude broke it, and I got to see an unrealistic learning curve of someone from another time adapting to the modern age. Sir Anthony Hopkins deserved more screen time.
I'd see it again. I did end up liking the film despite my best effort not to. It was one of my favorites of 2011. Also looking forward to seeing him again in The Avengers.
For the most part the film did pretty well. The epic battle was pretty epic. I enjoyed the speech Voldemort gave at the end. I think my favorite bit was the scene inside the goblin bank vault.
My husband said this movie was his favorite because it was the last one he'd ever have to see of the franchise. Lets hope J.K. doesn't let him down.
Chris Evans has done some geeky roles so when we saw how beefed up he got for this one I'm sure we were not the only ones that thought "steroids". Scientists (Stanley Tucci) came up with their own steroid delivery system to turn a geeky kid into a photoshopped fantasy of himself.
For some reason they decided to turn Mr. Smith from the Matrix into a German villain with some added steampunk references. I've never read the comics so hopefully they didn't veer too off course with the crazy car that was featured in the film.
It was fun to watch but it does make me miss geeky Chris Evans. Another of my favorites for 2011 though.
Anyhoo - the film was well acted and directed. The writing kind of threw me at the introduction of spider aliens (meh) but I held on to the end.
This one is more of a rental. J.J. you've done better work. The best thing in this movie was Elle Fanning. I'm not sure how the Fanning family managed to mutate their offspring into incredible actresses but they did.
I'm not sure if it was the soundtrack (Emily Browning was featured in many of the tracks) or the awesome cutaways to the action scenes but I loved the girl power throughout the film and the cool action sequences.
If you rent this movie I recommend seeing it on Blu-ray so you can get the full HD effect. Most would consider this a throwaway but it crawled its way into my heart for whatever reason and is there to stay.
I'm not sure why the movie didn't do well and was panned in many venues but we liked it. A good blend of comedy and action sequences that weren't boring made the film palatable. Watch it if only for Jay Chou's incredible fight scenes.
I hope they do another one or he gets put in some other American films because he is amazing.
The film is not for everyone (lots of raunch, cursing and such) and it pushes the envelope way past where the first film went. The writing was good though and they managed to achieve what I didn't think was possible.
We recently picked up the Blu-Ray edition of the film and enjoyed it again. It makes me want to visit "Thighland".
There are some massive differences between the movie and the book (some of which I really like the movie version better) but the overall feel is fantastic. I love the way the photography was done to capture the feeling of skipping time, of being on the smart drug and of being off the drug.
The book I feel was more realistic but the movie had a more satisfying ending. I was actually angry when I read the books ending and I'm glad they didn't use that in the film. Definitely a film to see.
We were both totally wrong about the film. It had a great feel to it, great writing and great acting. You totally wanted the apes to destroy the world by the end of the film after seeing what had been done to them. I don't think they really needed Malfoy to make a cameo appearance though. This was a surprise favorite of 2011 for me.
I was sort of let down when I did. Paul Bettany did what he could but it just wasn't that compelling of a film when it comes down to it. Typical Western "Damsel in distress" with a shake of vampires and other creatures added to it. Meh.
I wanted to like this film but I had a hard time doing that.
It would make an entertaining rental but not something I'd want to see more than once or twice.
It was a great continuation of his story, the animation was really nice and they continued with the awesome scenery that I loved so much in the original.
I can almost say I liked this one more than the first one. It is too close to call. The story of how Po came to be raised by a crane was cute and his journey to find his family home was very sweet. If you have kids you probably already own this one. One of my favorites for 2011.
Speaking of scores, the Chemical Brothers did an amazing job on the music for this film.
This little girl is such a fantastic actress and action star it makes me want to stand up and cheer with each bad guy she takes out. I love that Cate Blanchette plays a villain in this film too - she does a great job of making you hate her. This was another 2011 favorite.
85% of the movie is fantastic. Then it gets ridiculous at the end and the costuming of the "demon" makes the film take on a 1970's vibe with the bad clown makeup on him. I couldn't hold back a laugh when I saw how ridiculous it became.
That being said - the film is good and for most of it you're gonna be pretty darn scared. The ending is left open for a sequel. I'm not sure I'll see it if they make one because of the high possibility of them making it pretty bad. A good rental if you watch it in the dark.
If you love the 80's rent this film. Great soundtrack, great comedic actors and pretty good writing. Topher Grace gets to break out of the typical "goodie two shoes" role and play a guy that is kind of at a dead end in his career without any real direction in his life except towards a hot girl from high school.
The situations are funny and Anna Faris adds a lot to this film as does her husband Chris Pratt. Rent it, you won't regret it.
It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. I don't think they captured the raw feel that the Scandinavian film did but Rooney Mara made up for most of that with her amazing portrayal of Lizbeth Salander. The story seemed to have a completely different pace than the Swedish version. It was kind of hard to grab on to in the beginning they were going so fast. It is worth a comparison to the original version and if you haven't seen that you might enjoy it even more.
Watching a train wreck happen on screen becomes fun when Kristen Wig and Maya Rudolph have anything to do with it. It probably should be nominated for an Academy Award in something.
Anyone that has been in a wedding or has had one of their own will understand so many things that happen in the film. The end sequence is totally cute too. One of my faves.
We're huge fans of Simon Pegg and his faithful sidekick Nick Frost so we naturally flocked to the theater when this film was released and we were impressed with the results. The collaborative writing between the two of them is real magic and I was happy to see that Universal gave them a budget to really make it look good on screen.
The addition of Kristen Wig's character is so funny. If you are a sci-fi nerd and don't mind a little bit of raunchiness in your films you should see this one.
The film presents an interesting concept and Matt Damon carries it out quite well. I think the casting choices were very smart and that kept the movie interesting and compelling.
It makes me want some sort of fancy hat every time I see it.
When Anthony Hopkins can't save your movie you know you're in trouble. He tries really hard though and the only scenes worth watching are the ones with him in it. I found the main character annoying however and kept hoping a demon would take him out.
Not worth a rental. Just skip this one.
I think that just about sums it up - its a quirky film with all sorts of stuff happening in it. Not a bad film per-se but not a great one either.
Rent it but don't buy it. They kind of ruin the movie adding in the love story element when all I wanted to see was him doing crazy stuff.
I love gnomes. I love animated movies. They took two things I love and combined them into something completely adorable.
I wish I could add gnome sound effects to everything I did in real life, I think it would make my day more interesting.
The husband didn't care for it but I thought it was awesome. Rent it especially if you have kids.
Some of the jokes fell flat and the story wasn't that great. It is mediocre writing with mediocre acting even by James Franco.
My husband thought it was totally awesome so guys will probably like this film a lot. IMO skip it.
I found the story incredibly long and drawn out. It took forever to get anywhere and I found myself wondering how long I'd been sitting in the freaking theater.
If you love cat jokes, puns, sad stories and references you will probably find it completely amusing. I did not.
I lured my husband to the theater by telling him Christopher Waltz was in the film and played a villain. I felt bad by the end of the movie that his part had been so watered down there wasn't much he could do with it. They should have left some of that water for the elephants.
Walking out of the theater my husband said "So that was Fried Green Tomatoes but in the circus." I had to agree. Some of the photography in the film was beautiful to watch though. The book was better in this case. They had to take too much out to make it PG-13.
I will say, my exception was worth making to see this film. We've all had terrible bosses in our jobs and this film is no exception. I think Kevin Spacey, Jennifer Anniston and *cough* ok I'll say it - Colin Ferrell did a fantastic job portraying bosses we all can't stand.
Watching three guys try to plan and execute a way to take out their bosses was worth stomaching a little bit of Colin Ferrell.
The story is okay.
Probably more a date movie than anything else though. Its a cute date movie. I ended up with the Blu-Ray because I liked it a lot.
This movie is a rollercoaster ride of laughs and confirms that Jesse Eisenburg is a great actor. Aziz adds a lot of good comedy to the film too.
I'm not sure why my husband likes Danny McBride as much as he does but whatever his reasons are I'm glad that he does a good job in a movie like this. I think any movie where Danny McBride handles explosives it makes sense for his character.
Worth a rental.
It's a really dark comedy but Ellen Page adds so much to it I love it. Rainn Wilson owns this character and he did a great job on the film.
I know in listening to Doug Benson's podcast that the filming for Super wasn't easy and was miserable at times to do the weather and the production time available to film but it was totally worth it. I really like this movie.
Good films are ones that you share with others so they are as freaked out as you are.
The 2nd one was kind of a let down but I liked the 3rd film better than the 2nd. Most of it had me grabbing my husbands arm until they got to the ending which was kind of weird. I didn't really care for it. I also know a lot of people got kind of upset that trailer footage didn't match what was shown in the film and I kind of agree. Still, worth a rental if you saw the first two.
In Time has a cool concept and Niccol plays on the separation of wealth that exists now but in a different medium - minutes of your life. Instead of dollars separating the poor and the rich you've only got time.
I do think my glowing arm would give me issues while trying to sleep. Anyway - I liked the film a lot and I think Niccol did a good job writing it. The acting in it is pretty decent too. Worth a rental.
I was pleasantly surprised at the story and how it is woven together. Refn put his own directoral spin on the film in such a way that created pure magic. The soundtrack added so much to the film and the way he chose to let some scenes just have silence as a background too - it was done very well.
Arthouse meets action - it just grabs you from the very beginning. I think it would surprise most people to know that it's really a love story when you get down to it but it is done so well. I do warn you, there is violence and gore involved. You're totally cheering for The Driver when he starts on his rampage.
Worth owning. I have it on pre-order. And that's it for 2011! I hope 2012 brings many good films my way.