Hello all! March was truthfully a bit of a letdown, but the summer starts this April as some truly (read: hopefully) great movies are releasing this month. But before we get into that, let's take a look at the previous month, shall we?
This month I'm going to start a little something new for films that I didn't see by offering a "General Consensus" based on musings that I've heard from other reviews.
CHAPPiE: A lot of people actually enjoyed this one, so don't let my opinion persuade you from seeing it. That being said, this was easily Blomkamp's weakest film, driven downward by some really odd creative decisions, mainly the inclusion and focus of rap group Die Antwoord. Only the last half hour truly feels like some of his other material (i.e. really good). (Rath's Review Score: 6/10)
Unfinished Business: I skipped this one (as I skipped quite a few movies in March actually) and it seems like it was a good idea. Poor Vince Vaughn just can't catch a break in the cinemas and many critics cited the main issue with this comedy was that it just wasn't funny. (General Consensus: Terrible)
Cinderella: Skipped this one too, mainly because it was my birthday weekend and I was busy, but it seems that critics enjoyed how well made it was, but cited its lack of any deviation from the source material as a bit boring. (General Consensus: Above Average/Adequate)
Run All Night: I enjoyed the film for what it was worth, but I was really starting to see the tiredness of the "Liam Neeson" genre in this one. Run All Night isn't one of his worst, but it's not his best either, landing somewhere on the positive side of average. The plot/drama was pretty great, the action was okay. (RRS: 7.5/10)
The Divergent Series: Insurgent: Again, another film that I enjoyed for what it was worth (mainly because I read the books), although this is still the weaker of the three major dystopian YA film franchises out there (Hunger Games, Maze Runner, Divergent). It has some great visuals, and I really dig the cast...but the story is just not up to par at times. (RRS: 7/10)
The Gunman: The attempt to do what Taken did for Liam Neeson, but for Sean Penn, failed miserably both from a critic and financial standpoint. The trailers marketed it as an average action film, and it seems that it did little to impress anyone. (General Consensus: Bad)
Get Hard: Not Will Ferrell's funniest, but he and Kevin Hart have some good chemistry and the film is still pretty darn funny all things considered. It just fails to make any type of worthwhile point on race relations. (RRS: 7.5/10)
It Follows: I knew very little about this horror film going in and I was blown away. It's outstandingly well made (featuring some gorgeous cinematography), supremely creepy, and features one of the best original scores I've ever heard. Best movie of the year so far. (RRS: 9.5/10)
Most Disappointing: CHAPPiE
Most Surprising: It Follows
Worst Movie: CHAPPiE by default although it was probably Unfinished Business
Best Movie: It Follows
Phew! Thankfully we are now done with March! Let's check out a very exciting April! Remember to click the names of the films for their trailers.
Why It's Worth Seeing: Ever since the series was revitalized with Fast Five, it has really become the pinnacle of well-made "dumb fun" in Hollywood. The cast gels better than any other out there, mainly because they are all best friends in real life, and the action is inventive, providing a lot of "I've never seen that before!" moments. Don't believe me? Just watch the trailer. On top of all this, there are really positive early reviews, citing that the farewell to Paul Walker is very touching.
What Could Go Wrong: Honestly? Not much. It might be a little too long or a little too dumb in some spots, but by now, fans know what they are getting themselves into. This one will be a hit.
Why It's Worth Seeing: Umm....maybe...it doesn't...suck? I'm not really sure on this one. It was the only wide release for this weekend.
What Could Go Wrong: The description reads: "The lives of a young couple intertwine with an old man looking back on the relationship he had with a lost love". If that doesn't sound cliche for a romance film, then I don't know what does.
Why It's Worth Seeing: This year seems to be the year of artificial intelligence (CHAPPiE, Ultron, this film, etc.). Ex Machina has some fantastic early reviews and a great cast, including Oscar Isaac who is soon to be in Star Wars. The film is gorgeous and looks like it might actually ask some important questions.
What Could Go Wrong: One of the recent trailers I watched gave off an oddly sexual vibe, which I hope is not the point of the film. We already had the fantastic, Her, last year to discover relationships with AI, I'm not sure we need to see it again. I'm hoping Ex Machina goes a different direction.
Why It's Worth Seeing: I honestly don't know a single thing about this one (crazy, I know!) but the fact that Gary Oldman and Tom Hardy are involved has me more than intrigued. It looks like it could be an exciting war thriller.
What Could Go Wrong: I could be wrong, but it seems to be a WWII drama. We've had plenty of those over the years and they aren't always impressive. The story will need to be unique and well crafted for this one to stand above the rest.
What Could Go Wrong: So far this year, there have been several comedic duds, but even worse, the films just aren't funny...at all. Whose to say that Blart is safe from the same fate?
Why It's Worth Seeing: While some may scoff at the idea of a horror film based solely in the realm of Skype, Google, and Facebook, I think it's brilliant and truly a sign of the changing times. The premise and initial trailer for Unfriended are amazing and we could really be looking at a unique horror film here.
What Could Go Wrong: I have a feeling that it may have a stupid plot outcome and a poor script, both of which would severely hamper the attempt at trying something new. Furthermore, while the trailer seems scary, it could always end up that once you are in the theater, that Skype monsters aren't all that terrifying.
Why It's Worth Seeing: For some inexplicable reason, I have a really good feeling about this film. It could just be the fact that I'm convinced that Blake Lively is an angel, but my gut tells me there might be something special here. The film looks well made and has an impressive cast (including Harrison Ford), but also an interesting story that could be both romantic and tragic. Early trailers are impressive as well.
What Could Go Wrong: As with this month's other romantic release, it could always be cliche and feature clunky dialog, or an even worse plot. But I don't think (read: hope) that's the case...
Must See (in order): Furious 7, Ex Machina, The Age of Adaline (give me a break here!)
On My Radar: Child 44, Unfriended (almost made my "Must See" out of sheer curiosity)
Predicted Duds: The Longest Ride, Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2
Looks like April is really going to heat things up! Or that could just be me drooling over Blake Lively. Check back next month for a VERY BUSY May which is sure to have some freaking humongous films. As always, I'd be really appreciative if you came and followed me through Blogger at RATH'S REVIEWS and like me on Facebook HERE! I follow-for-follow 100%. Thanks again!
Please check back here tomorrow for the first part of my Top 10 Villains list.