Saturday, November 22, 2014

The Three Dogateers
Releases on DVD & Digital Download November 18, 2014
1 hr 27 mins
Not Rated
Adventure, Kids & Family


Director: Jesse Bagel

Dean Cain as Matt
Bill Oberst Jr. as Barney Gloatt
Richard Riehle as Santa
Andrea Monier as Lisa
Rodney Kageyama as Mr. Hiroshi
Sabrina Gomez as Nurse
The Mighty Tigre as Arfamis
The Spicy Pepper as Barkos
They Tiny Dixy as Wagos
Jesse Baget as Arfamis (Voice)
Jesse Baget as Barkos (Voice)
Danielle Judovits as Wagos (Voice)

Review by Stephen M.

The film The Three Dogateers had my daughter laughing out loud as the three dogs get into trouble during the holiday season.  One the movie was an enjoyable hour and a half for my daughter it was sheer agony for me.  Despite the throwback comedy styling that reminds me of the inept Inspector Clouseau in the dog catcher or any one of Don Knotts's characters including Barney Fife there is not a whole lot of holiday spirits for me in this review.

The story as it implies focuses on three dogs that lives in the household of Matt (Dean Cain) a rather disastrous traveling tie salesman.  In a scene out of Home Alone, the dogs are left alone as Matt has to quickly meet a client out of town leaving the dogs alone and hungry so that he can get back in time to prepare the house for Christmas.  When thieves break in to Matt's home and steal everything, they unknowingly get three stowaways.  The story from here starts to take off as most of the first fifteen minutes are of Arfamis telling stories to the other two dogs.  And despite Arfamis's embellishments, dogs just don't have very interesting stories to tell.

The acting in the film though a bit over the top is just what is needed for a children's film of this nature.  The actors including Dean Cain and the dog catcher, played by Bill Oberst Jr. does a great job in this sense.  Bill Oberst Jr. as I have mentioned before will bring back memories of Don Knotts and Peter Sellers in their famous roles as clumsy law enforcers.  The voice actors for the dogs while good, because of the dialogue just annoys the heck out of me with the pointless ramblings especially of Arfamis.

Overall, I would recommend this for young kids, but for adults to stay away.  There are much better family holiday films from Home Alone to A Charlie Brown Christmas that is more enjoyable for the entire family to watch.  The movie while suffering in dialogue and repetitiveness has a few bright spots in the performances mentioned above and as well Santa Claus himself played by Richard Riehle.  Those few bright spots though are not enough for me to want to sit through another viewing of approximately one and a half hours of dogs talking.  My daughter however, would have probably given this five stars.


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

The new teaser poster and trailer was released today for INSURGENT, the sequel to DIVERGENT.  

Check out the trailer here: 

THE DIVERGENT SERIES: INSURGENT opens nationwide in 2D, RealD, and Digital 3D on March 20, 2015!

THE DIVERGENT SERIES: INSURGENT raises the stakes for Tris as she searches for allies and answers in the ruins of a futuristic Chicago. Tris (Woodley) and Four (James) are now fugitives on the run, hunted by Jeanine (Winslet), the leader of the power-hungry Erudite elite.  Racing against time, they must find out what Tris’s family sacrificed their lives to protect, and why the Erudite leaders will do anything to stop them.  Haunted by her past choices but desperate to protect the ones she loves, Tris, with Four at her side, faces one impossible challenge after another as they unlock the truth about the past and ultimately the future of their world.

Directed by: Robert Schwentke
Screenplay by: Brian Duffield and Akiva Goldsman and Mark Bomback
Based On The Novel by: Veronica Roth
Produced By: Douglas Wick, Lucy Fisher, Pouya Shahbazian
Cast: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Academy Award® Winner Octavia Spencer, Jai Courtney, Ray Stevenson, Zoë Kravitz, Miles Teller, Ansel Elgort, Maggie Q, Mekhi Phifer, Janet McTeer, Daniel Dae Kim, with Naomi Watts, and Academy Award® Winner Kate Winslet

NYC - Want to meet the cast of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 this Saturday at a special Fan Event?  Enter to win - LINK!

A brand new trailer for 20th Century Fox's upcoming film, NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM: SECRET OF THE TOMB, has been released! Hop on board this epic journey with the star-studded cast, when the film hits theaters everywhere on December 19, 2014!

Watch the NEW trailer now:

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Frozen in Time
Releases on DVD November 11th, 2014
46 mins
Not Rated
Animation, Family


Director: Alex Leung

Colin Murdock as Bob
Drake Bell as Brody
Mira Sorvino as Carol
Valin Shinyei as Eric
Alyssya Swales as Patty
Richard Newman as Santa
Ed Asner as Grandpa

Review by Stephen M.

Frozen in Time brings the fun of Groundhog Day with none of the aliens from Edge of Tomorrow, as two siblings relives Christmas eve over and over again.  While a bit short for a feature film at 46 minutes, it is just the right length to keep the attention span of kids with enough time to bring across a message fitting for the upcoming holidays.

The film is a bit on the predictable side.  Mischievous kids that learn it doesn't always have to be about them with instant gratification and pleasure.  The animation while not amazing is adequate.  The exception would be the sequence where Grandpa tells a story of an inventor tasked to building a magical clock in a land far away is visually stunning.  Ed Asner always does a phenomenal job in these voice acting roles.   The two kids, Eric (Valin Shinyei) and Patty (Alyssya Swales) both lack enough unique character in their personality to stand out on their own.

Overall, I would recommend the film if you can catch it on Netflix or for rental.  While entertaining especially for the targeted group of kids, overall, the film lacks originality, and features average animation and voice acting.  Children age nine and under will enjoy the film.  Parents may enjoy it but not at the full price of the DVD.


Thursday, November 6, 2014

Below you will find the teaser trailer for Secret Wars Battleworld which is Marvel's big comic book event next summer commencing in May 2015.  Over the last few weeks we have been teased with covers of upcoming limited series that gives us a sense of deja vu such as Civil War and Age of Ultron vs. Marvel Zombies.  The teaser trailer doesn't give us much more information other than that these various events or parallel dimensions are all interrelated somehow as part of a Secret Wars.  

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Here are a few free screenings being offered on Eventbrite for the New York City area.

The Vixens
November 8, 2014 Sat 9 pm
Our feature film, a spoof of 70s exploitation movies, is finally ready to be shown in public, so catch it now before it's banned for gratutious nudity, obscene gestures and illegal use of coyprighted music!

House of Shadows (Controra)
November 18, 2014 Tue 7:30 pm
Screening of Italian supernatural thriller with Director Rossella De Venuto in person

Civil Servant
November 19, 2014 Wed 7:00 pm
Advance screening of web series hosted by creators and cast.

The Rebirth of Paris
December 13, 2014 Sat 6:00 pm
Documentary on the ballroom scene with Producer and Cast

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Releases November 7th, 2014
2 hr 49 mins
Rated PG-13
Action/Adventure, Drama


Director: Christopher Nolan

Astronaut Crew
Matthew McConaughey as Cooper
Anne Hathaway as Amelia Brand
David Gyasi as Romilly
Wes Bentley as Doyle
Bill Irwin as the voice of TARS
Josh Stewart as the voice of CASE

Additional Characters
Jessica Chastain as Murph
Mackenzie Foy as Young Murph
Ellen Burstyn as Old Murph
Michael Caine as Professor Brand
Casey Affleck as Tom
Timothée Chalamet as Young Tom
William Devane as Old Tom
John Lithgow as Donald
Topher Grace as Getty
David Oyelowo as Principal
Matt Damon as Dr. Mann

Review by Stephen M.

Interstellar, whether a tale of humanity's fate on Earth heading toward impending doom or a science fiction rich space odyssey, is an epic tale that can only be told by Director Christopher Nolan.  Despite being almost three hours long, the story moves along well.  Such that time flies both in the theater and in the movie.  Humanity's rescue from their dying planet lies in the hands of pilot Cooper (Matthew McConaughey) and Amelia Brand (Anne Hathaway) as they enter a wormhole to another galaxy that has planets that may be inhabitable.

Besides the superb storytelling, I love the sets and costume designs that gives this space fantasy a more 1980s look than what you would imagine.  This fits in well with the theme of the movie of the planet being resource strapped, secretly continuing a space program to save the remaining humans.  The only futuristic technology comes in the form of what looks like old IBM mainframes that are actually transformable old military robot units that have multiple functions and apparently personalities that are programmable.  From the Waterworld type planet to a planet with frozen clouds, the beauty in the settings the astronauts explore are equally frightening as the filmmakers create wonders in simplicity.

With regards to the acting, it is hard to find fault with the stellar cast.  From Matthew McConaughey as the lead, to the various iterations of Murphy, they all did a phenomenal job in their roles.  The robots, TARS (Bill Irwin) and CASE (Josh Stewart), with their own unique voice and personality was odd but made for some humorous moments.  The only character I would say that didn't stand out, perhaps not by fault of the actress, is Anne Hathaway's Amelia.  Compared to Cooper's kids or even the other astronauts, she just paled as far as being an interesting dynamic character.

Overall, I would recommend the film, though you will be in for a doozy trying to wrap your head around the science behind Interstellar.  From wormholes, to black holes and event horizon and theories of relativity, the film will probably take you two viewings to fully grasp the ending.  Composer Hans Zimmer, extraordinary in most films, does a good job in the film with the score, but nothing to write home about.  Matt Damon as Dr. Mann would be my other standout performer besides Matthew.  Though perhaps a little predictable, it was still a nice change of pace with him in the scenes than just Matthew and Anne.


Saturday, November 1, 2014

Big Hero 6
Releases November 7th, 2014
Rated PG
1 hr 48 mins


Directors: Don Hall, Chris Williams

Ryan Potter as Hiro Hamada
Scott Adsit as Baymax
Jamie Chung as GoGo Tomago
Damon Wayans, Jr. as Wasabi
Génesis Rodríguez as Honey Lemon
T. J. Miller as Fred / Fredzilla
Daniel Henney as Tadashi Hamada
Maya Rudolph as Aunt Cass
James Cromwell as Professor Robert Callaghan
Alan Tudyk as Alistair Krei

Review by Stephen M.

Big Hero 6, Disney's answer to Frozen for boys is an animation worthy of the whole family.  Big Hero 6, a creation of Marvel Comics but made cuter and more kid friendly by Disney is led by Hiro (Ryan Potter) and his robot Baymax (Scott Adsit) along with his friends.  Even though the film makes no mention of its Marvel roots, there is an appearance of a certain longtime Marvel creator during the film and after the end credits.

The story's focus is on Hiro, a teenage whiz kid that would rather participate in illegal bot fights than be productive like his brother Tadashi (Daniel Henney).  When Hiro inherits his brother's robot Baymax, circumstances forces Hiro, Baymax and Tadashi's former peers to team up as costumed armored super-heroes.  What you will love about the film is the humor of the film especially of Baymax's interaction with the world around him.  Scott Adsit does an amazing job despite the limitations of acting as a robot.  The character designs of both him and the other characters are impressive as well as the world built around them in the futuristic San Fran/Tokyo city.  Besides Scott Adsit, Ryan as Hiro also does a great job especially in the scene where Hiro finds out who the villain actually is. 

What you may not like about the movie, at least I didn't is that the movie drags a bit in parts as well speeds through other parts which didn't help with the overall movie.  Case in point when the team gets their suits from Hiro, the speed with which they acclimate themselves is unbelievable even taking into consideration their intelligence. While most of the super heroes have impressive character designs, the villain is quite the opposite, with only a kabuki mask and dark jacket and clothing.  He becomes even more unimpressive, when his identity and motives are revealed. 

Overall, I still highly enjoyed the film and would recommend seeing it with the family.  Even young kids can enjoy the humor of Baymax and adults who are into the super hero genre will enjoy the rest.  Added to the very good film is an amazing soundtrack that fits the film perfectly in mood, with a mostly feel good rock beat.   Remember to stay after the credits for the bonus scene and then comes the long wait for the sequel that they are bound to make.