Four FBI agents travel to Saudi Arabia without permission to investigate a coordinated attack and multiple bombing that killed their comrade.
I remember watching this one in the middle of a long run...10 miles or something like that. I enjoyed it.
I give it 3 out of 5.
Various people must deal with shape-shifting, extraterrestrial robots that have arrived on Earth to battle over a powerful device that could mean the end of humankind.
I say that I watched part of it because this was one of the rare occasions when I stopped watching a movie in the middle because I thought it was so bad. I wasn't into Transformers as a kid, so maybe that was part of it...and the voices are just so goofy.
I give it 1 out of 5.
Three high school seniors set out to buy liquor for a big party where they hope it will help lower the inhibitions of the girls in which they're interested.
I remember someone telling me that she didn't enjoy Knocked Up that much because it was just too crude. I didn't feel that way about Knocked Up but did with Superbad...funny, but just too crude. I give it 3 out of 5.
A firefighter begins an experimental, 40-day program to try to save his marriage.
Last weekend small groups at our church started the associated 6-week study. We missed the screening of the film because we were in D.C., so we caught up tonight.
Let me first say that Christian multimedia has come a long way. That doesn't mean this was a masterpiece, but it was decent. It reminded me more of a TV movie than one for the theaters, but that's OK. I thought it was strongest in it's dead-pan, humorous bits. Caleb's dad's description of God's holiness was somehow particularly effective too. With divorce as prevalent as it is, this is obviously a worthwhile subject. We thought it was a little funny that the task of salvaging the marriage appeared to be entirely on Caleb's shoulders. I also thought it was a bit strange that Caleb seemed to have so many positive influences while Catherine apparently had none (until the white-haired lady got all up in her business). The black female characters were a bit too one dimensional ("Uh huhhhh! Oh no he dit-unt!"), but at least Caleb's pal at work, Michael, was strong.
I give it 4 out of 5 for effort.
Two sets of parents are accidentally shrunk to miniature sizes and watch as their kids have a party.
This one, of course, doesn't take any unexpected turns...but it's enjoyable enough. Lisa was shocked when I told her it was from 1997. It seems like an earlier vintage. Or maybe we're getting old.
I give it 3 out of 5.
On the afternoon of December 31st, while the boys watched Bedtime Stories with their cousin and grandpa, Lisa and I went to see Slumdog Millionaire (2008,R) (ScreenIt! Review). From the ScreenIt! Review:
As a young man prepares to answer the last question on India's version of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" he must answer allegations of him cheating by proving that his life experiences, including growing up in the slums as an orphan, have provided him with the knowledge necessary to answer the questions.
I watched Born into Brothels last year, so I had a feel for what life is often like for kids in India's slums. I enjoyed the film. Several of the plot twists weren't hard to see coming (though Lisa turned out to be wrong about the prediction she made), and the love story was a bit over-wrought. Despite all the tragedy, it was enjoyable to watch the Indian kids' lives, and I couldn't help thinking about my kids while doing it. I'm kind of puzzled that it received an R rating...it seemed more like PG-13 to me.
I give it 4 out of 5.
Tonight I watched Charlie Wilson's War (2007,R) (ScreenIt! Review). From ScreenIt!:
A party-going congressman, a bitter and sardonic CIA case officer, and a wealthy Texas socialite set out to help Afghan rebels fight off invading Russian forces, all in the hope of stemming the spread of communism in 1980.
It was enjoyable enough and the subject of Afghanistan definitely had more resonance after reading Khaled Hosseini's books - but not too much else. I give it 3 out of 5.
A few months back I watched the film Baghdad High on HBO. From Wikipedia:
It documents the lives of four Iraqi schoolboys over the course of one year in the form of a video diary. The documentary was filmed by the boys themselves, who were given video cameras for the project.
One of the more remarkable aspects of the film to me was how familiar it seemedâ€¦how similar in essence Iraqi school boys are to American school boysâ€¦how two Iraqis can look at the same event (for example, the execution of Saddam Hussein's execution) and have completely different perspectives.
Mohammad: Do you think Saddam was really killed?
His grandmother: Yes he was killed.
Mohammad: Do you think his trial was fair?
His grandmother: Yes, but he didnâ€™t need a trial anyhow.
His grandmother: He inflicted so much suffering on the Iraqi people. If we hadnâ€™t executed him we would have been the weakest people on earth.
Mohammad: Do you think the situation will improve?
His grandmother: I don't care if it makes life better or not. The main thing is we did the right thing. Every dictator deserves the same fate.
and then another one of the boys:
The situation is very bad.Â We got pretty upset after Saddam's execution. This is not the right time.Â A country's leader to be executed this way? The people in power are not better than he was. Dad was especially sad for Iraq. It means that Iraq is finished. God help us!
I give it 4 out of 5.
Iâ€™ve never been a big fan of the Bourne series, but this one (like the others) was full of superspy action and enjoyable enough. I give it 3 out of 5.
A ruthless London bond trader finds his life upended when he inherits his uncle's French vineyard and then falls for a local restaurateur.
It was fairly bland but enjoyable enough. I give it 3 out of 5.