Latest Movies: October 1 2014 – January 16 2015

[Number of movies rated as of 1/23/2015 is 1465]

Super

Netflix summary: When his wife (Liv Tyler) falls in league with a drug dealer, average guy Frank D’Arbo (Rainn Wilson) dons the guise of a superhero, dubs himself the Crimson Bolt and tries to keep a tagalong comic-book store clerk (Ellen Page) from becoming his sidekick. But it’s hard to be a superhero when all you’ve got to work with is a pipe wrench. Kevin Bacon co-stars in this action-driven dramedy from writer-director James Gunn.

★★★★ It’s been several months since I watched this movie. Netflix says I gave it four stars so I’m going with that.

Django Unchained

Netflix Summary: Accompanied by a German bounty hunter, a freed slave named Django travels across America to free his wife from a sadistic plantation owner. Quentin Tarantino directs this modern-day spaghetti Western.

★★★ This was the second time I’ve watched this and I was hoping to enjoy it more than I did the first round considering my love for Tarantino. It lacks something in Tarantino’s other movies, however…is it that he doesn’t humanize the villains? I’m still not sure. Good, just not great.

Fargo

Netflix Summary:Police chief Marge Gunderson — a serious sleuth who’s sharper than her folksy accent suggests — is hot on the trail of a Minneapolis car dealer conspiring with two kidnappers to snatch his wife so he can pocket part of the hefty ransom.

★★★★★ Love this movie, it’s one of my favorites. I was tempted to watch it again after going to a wedding in the midwest. All of the accents reminded me of this movie.

Hungry for Change

Netflix Summary: This documentary exposes secrets the diet, weight loss and food industries don’t want consumers to know about: deceptive strategies designed to keep you coming back for more. Find out what’s keeping people from having the body and health they want.

★★★ Meh this movie does not introduce any theories you have not heard before.

The Wolf of Wall Street

Netflix Summary: Martin Scorcese’s high-rolling Wall Street drama is based on the memoirs of stockbroker Jordan Belfort, whose giddy career — involving audacious scams and confrontations with the FBI and other agencies — ended in federal prison.

★★★ Nothing new here. Just another movie glorifying drugs and financial fraud. Di Caprio and Scorcese’s names are the only thing that put this movie in the spotlight.

Tollhunter

Netflix Summary: While investigating a series of suspicious bear killings, a group of students trail a mysterious “hunter” who tries to elude them at every turn. The group soon learns that his prey is far more dangerous and mystical than mere bears.

★★★★ I am more familiar with Norwegian-grandmother version of trolls, so this was a pretty cool interpretation of Scandinavian folklore, for me at least. I haven’t seen too many Norwegian films, I’ll have to remedy that….

Women Who Kill

Netflix Summary: Top comediennes Amy Schumer, Rachel Feinstein, Nikki Glaser and Marina Franklin join up in New York City for one hilarious night of stand-up comedy. From racism to pregnancy, nothing is off-limits as each comic delivers her own sharp point-of-view.

★★★★ I credit this for introducing me to Marina Franklin, who I hope does more stand-up soon.

Women Aren’t Funny

Netflix Summary: Comedian Bonnie McFarlane enlists Joan Rivers, Wanda Sykes, Sarah Silverman and other greats to put to rest the notion that women aren’t funny.

★★ Sometimes funny things happen in this documentary but….mostly not. Women are funny…just not the woman who made this IMO.

Reefer Madness

Netflix Summary: In this 1930s propaganda film turned cult classic comedy, a group of teens seduced by the power of “reefer” take a few puffs and instantly become psychotic killers, rapists and jazz addicts.

★★★ In retrospect, propaganda is always hilarious.

Skyfall

Netflix Summary: When a serious menace threatens MI6, James Bond is on the case — putting aside his own life and personal issues to hunt and obliterate the perpetrators. Meanwhile, secrets arise from M’s past that strain Bond’s loyalty to his longtime boss.

★★★ Meh. For some reason I have zero interest in Bond movies. I just don’t. I’m not actually sure I’ve watched an entire one. Not even this one; I stopped paying attention and started playing around on the internet mid-movie.

Sleepless in Seattle

Netflix Summary: Fate and a tenacious 8-year-old boy conspire to unite lovelorn widower Sam Baldwin and unhappily engaged journalist Annie Reed in this Oscar-nominated romantic comedy inspired by the 1957 classic An Affair to Remember.

★★★ I haven’t watched this movie since I was a child and I decided to re-watch this in order to see if I could spot familiar Seattle landmarks now that I live in downtown. It’s a classic 90s RomCom.

Enlightened

Netflix Summary: After a major spiritual awakening during rehab, businesswoman Amy Jellicoe resolves to redesign her life toward higher goodness in this arch HBO sitcom. Trouble is, her friends and colleagues have little use for the new, philosophically improved Amy.

★★★★★ While a little slow-moving, I highly enjoyed this dark comedy HBO show. The pilot had me rolling on the floor. Laura Dern does a fantastic job of balancing a character who is both gratingly irritating and somehow inspiring. With the mask of a New Age compassion, she manages to take down the corporation that put her in mental-health treatment center she goes to in the pilot. One reviewer accurately noted it walks the edge between a life lesson and a parody. Definitely recommend.

Family Tree

Netflix Summary: In this mockumentary series from Christopher Guest and Jim Piddock, Chris O’Dowd plays a 30-year-old struggling to find his identity. Luckily, he inherits a box full of characters when a great-aunt leaves him her belongings.

★★★ I ❤ Chris O’Dowd and genealogy so this seemed like something I would enjoy. It definitely had the feel of a show that wasn’t doing so well and had to be wrapped up pretty quickly but I found it hilarious.

Now to start (late) what I call “Action Movie January” where I gather all my Stallone, JCVD, Hackman, Eastwood, Schwarzenegger, Gibson, and De Niro movies.

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