Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Green Lantern (2011)

Its not easy being Green
Another comic book character cash cow.  This one is a real snooze fest.  Its not so much that it was predictable because to a certain extent all superhero movies are predictable.  Its not even that Ryan Reynolds was the absolute last person that should be playing Hal Jordan (much love to Ryan, star of the outstanding Buried).  I'm even a fan of Blake Lively, but the story was not interesting, the writing was poor and I didn't care about the characters.  And I feel asleep during the action sequences toward the end. 

The Green Lantern gets a very unheroic 2 out of 5 Poblanos!

Director: Martin Campbell
Writer: Greg Berlanti (screenplay), Michael Green (screenplay)
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively and Peter Sarsgaard
Rotten Tomatoes: 27%
Metacritic: 39 out of 100

Thursday, June 21, 2012


Get out while you still can
With looting and rioting happening in Paris, a group of hoodlums flees to the countryside.  They find themselves besieged by a family of neo-nazis.  This film was actually not as bad as it sounds, or at least not as bad as it could have been.  Think Hostel, but in French.  Having seen The Divide also by Xavier Gens, I had an inkling of what kind of film this would be.  Some of the visuals were very striking.  Gens managed to create a fair amount of tension.  The story is decent, but quite predictable.  Worth a watch if you like horror flicks. 

Frontiere(s) gets 3 out of 5 Poblanos

Director: Xavier Gens
Writer: Xavier Gens
Starring: Karina Testa, Aurélien Wiik and Patrick Ligardes
Rotten Tomatoes: 55%
Metacritic: 44 out of 100

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Prometheus (2012)

Never trust a robot
The scientific crew of the Prometheus is tasked to find evidence of an ancient civilization on a distant planet.  Upon arrival, the crew discovers a structure .  And if you're ever seen any of the Alien films, you can guess what happens next when they begin to explore it.   Ridley Scott has made another fantastic sci-fi thriller.  And while it is not specifically an "Alien" story, this film still fits well into the existing Alien cannon of films. The only thing keeping me from giving it the maximum '5' is a couple of ridiculous situations.  But despite any minor flaws, Prometheus delivers an engrossing story, great action, gorgeous sets and lots of entertainment.  And after all, isn't that what films are about?

Prometheus extracts 4 out of 5 Poblanos! 

Director: Ridley Scott
Writer: Jon Spaihts (The Darkest Hour), Damon Lindelof (Lost)
Starring:  Noomi Rapace (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo), Logan Marshall-Green, Michael Fassbende, Idris Elba, and Charlize Theron
Rotten Tomatoes: 73%
Metacritic: 65 out of 100

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Darkest Hour (2011)

Back in the USSR
A group of young people are trapped in Moscow during a worldwide alien invasion.  While trying to survive, they also figure out how to stop the aliens.  This film got panned by the critics, but I really liked it for several reasons.  Firstly, the concept is interesting and original.  The alien invasion story has been done (and overdone), this film explores it in a fresh way.  Also, no character is safe; anyone can die.  Lastly, it is just a fun film, something that is missing in Hollywood.  Everyone wants to be edgy and cool, but where's the fun?  Sure some of the action is implausible and there are a couple of plot holes, but the film remains enjoyable (unlike some big budget films, Fast Five being one) and is much better than most things Hollywood puts out.  The Darkest Hour is produced by one of my favorite directors Timur Bekmambetov (Night Watch, Day Watch, Wanted)

The Darkest Hour gets a respectable 3 out of 5 Poblanos!

Director: Chris Gorak
Writer: Jon Spaiht
Starring: Emile Hirsch, Olivia Thirlby and Max Minghella
Rotten Tomatoes: 11%
Metacritic: 16 out of 100

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Road to Nowhere (2010)

A story within a story
A filmmaker's latest film attempts to tell the true story of betrayal, murder and suicide. As he gets deeper into the narrative and further into the film, tensions rise between he and his crew.  Road to Nowhere is a little bit Get Shorty and a little bit Mulholland Drive, but is nowhere near as good as either of those films.  Road to Nowhere is very slow, painfully slow at times. It is a good film and is very well made, but comes up lacking.

Road to Nowhere might not go anywhere, but still gets 3 out of 5 Poblanos!

Director: Monte Hellman
Writer: Steven Gaydos
Starring: Tygh Runyan, Dominique Swain and Cliff De Young
Rotten Tomatoes: 79%
Metacritic: 59%