Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Releases July 24th 2015
1 hr 46 mins
Rated PG-13
Comedy, Family


Director: Chris Columbus
Writers: Tim Herlihy, Timothy Dowling

Adam Sandler as Sam Brenner
Anthony Ippolito as 13 year old Sam
Kevin James as President Will Cooper,
Jared Riley as 13 year old Will
Josh Gad as Ludlow Lamonsoff
Jacob Shinder as 8 year Ludlow
Peter Dinklage as Eddie Plant
Andrew Bambridge as 13 year Eddie
Michelle Monaghan as Lieutenant Colonel Violet van Patten
Matt Lintz as Matty, a son of Violet
Brian Cox as Admiral Porter
Ashley Benson as Lady Lisa
Jane Krakowski as Carolyn Cooper]
Denis Akiyama as Toru Iwatani
Sean Bean as Corporal Hill
Affion Crockett as Sergeant Dylan Cohan
Dan Aykroyd as 1982 Championship MC
Lainie Kazan as Mickey Lamonsoff

Review by Stephen M.

If you're nostalgic about arcade games in 1982 specifically, then there's a chance you would like Pixels.  And that is a rare feat considering Adam Sandler's recent track record of comedic films that just plain stunk.  Pixels won't be winning any Oscars for 2015, but you probably already realized that and with low expectations, Pixels is actually a fun film to watch.

The premise is fairly outlandish but yet intriguing enough due to the nostalgic factor.  Adam Sandler plays Sam Brenner who as a kid was amazingly gifted at arcade games due to his ability to easily recognize patterns in the games.  He goes on to compete at an arcade championship only to finish second that would haunt him.  Fast forward to adulthood and he and his friends have gone starkly different paths.  Sam is a Nerd worker that helps put together video/sound systems at people's homes.  His friend William Cooper played by Kevin James is now the President of the United States, and his friend Ludlow Lamonsoff played by Josh Gad is still... odd.  They are thrown back together along with others due to an alien attack that greatly resembles the 1980s arcade games they grew up with.

Of the three friends, I really enjoyed Josh Gad's performance the most.  He has the best dialogues and best moments in the movie that will actually have you laughing.  Peter Dinklage, who plays Sam's childhood arcade rival is a sad example of how to misuse a good actor and have you longing for a new season of Game of Thrones.

The poor performance or lack of an interesting character doesn't stop with Peter's.  Adam and Kevin's characters are all too predictable, playing characters that we have been accustomed to seeing.  The plot at times challenges your intelligence and even admits to it when they can't even explain certain things (Q-Bert's transformation).

Overall, I would recommend this as a matinee if you have the chance.  The film is a mediocre comedy that has some good laughs but not enough to pay full price for.  I was able to watch the film on IMAX 3D and the film with its action especially the battle scenes are great on the bigger screen.  Despite its flaws, and its PG-13 rating, older kids and adults who grew up on these games will enjoy the film.


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