Release date: July 26, 2013 (Wide) Runtime: 2 hr. 16 min. Genre: Action, Adventure Director: James Mangold Studio: 20th Century Fox Producer(s): Lauren Shuler Donner, Hutch Parker Screenplay: Mark Bomback, Scott Frank Cast: Hugh Jackman, Hiroyuki Sanada, Famke Janssen, Will Yun Lee, Rila Fukushima, Tao Okamoto, Svetlana Khodchenkova, Haruhiko Yamanouchi Official Site:thewolverinemovie.com Rated:PG-13: for sequences of intense sci-fi action and violence, some sexuality and language Official Movie Art:The Wolverine movie posters
Official Synopsis:Based on the celebrated comic book arc, this epic action-adventure takes Wolverine, the most iconic character of the X-Men universe, to modern day Japan. Out of his depth in an unknown world he faces his ultimate nemesis in a life-or-death battle that will leave him forever changed. Vulnerable for the first time and pushed to his physical and emotional limits, he confronts not only lethal samurai steel but also his inner struggle against his own immortality, emerging more powerful than we have ever seen him before.
Release date: July 19, 2013 (Wide) Runtime: 1 hr. 36 min. Genre: Comedy/Action Director: Robert Schwentke Studio: Universal Pictures Producer(s): Neal H. Moritz, Mike Richardson, Michael Fottrell Screenplay: Phil Hay, Matt Manfredi Cast: Jeff Bridges, Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Bacon, Mary-Louise Parker, Stephanie Szostak, Robert Knepper, James Hong, Marisa Miller, Mike O’Malley, Devin Rattray Official Site:ripd.com Rated:PG-13: for violence, sci-fi/fantasy action, some sensuality and language including sexual references. Official Movie Art:R.I.P.D. movie posters
Synopsis: The popular Dark Horse comic book comes to the big screen in the blockbuster, R.I.P.D. starring Ryan Reynolds and Jeff Bridges. Reynolds plays a Boston police officer, who is killed in the line of duty. When he arrives in the afterlife, he is assigned to the Rest in Peace Department (R.I.P.D.) where and his new partner Roy Pulsifer (Bridges) are tasked with finding and arresting lost souls who are hiding out on Earth.
Release date: June 28, 2013 (Wide) Runtime: 2 hr. 17 min. Genre: Action Director: Roland Emmerich Studio: Columbia Pictures Producer(s): James Vanderbilt, Larry Franco, Laeta Kalogridis, Bradley J. Fischer, Harald Kloser Screenplay: James Vanderbilt Cast: Channing Tatum, Jamie Foxx, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jason Clarke, Richard Jenkins, James Woods, Joey King, Rachelle Lefevre, Matt Craven, Michael Murphy Official Site:whitehousedown.com Rated:PG-13: for prolonged sequences of action and violence including intense gunfire and explosions, some language and a brief sexual image. Official Movie Art:White House Down movie posters
Synopsis: When his application with the Secret Service was rejected, Capitol Policeman John Cale (Channing Tatum), not wanting to tell his daughter (Joey King) the bad news takes her on a tour of the White House. While they both tour the complex, a heavily armed paramilitary group seize control and an explosion tears through the building and mass chaos ensues.
When the dust settles, Cale learns that heavily armed terrorists have taken both his daughter and the president hostage. Realizing that his daughter and the president’s life is in danger and with time running out for the nation, Cale springs into action.
Release date: May 24, 2013 (Wide) Runtime: 130 min. Genre: Action & Adventure Director: Justin Lin Studio: Universal Pictures Producer(s): Vin Diesel, Clayton Townsend, Neal H. Moritz Screenplay: Chris Morgan Cast: Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Jordana Brewster, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Sung Kang, Gal Gadot, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Luke Evans, Elsa Pataky, Gina Carano Official Site:thefastandthefurious.com Rated:PG-13: for intense sequences of violence, action and mayhem throughout, some sexuality and language. Official Movie Art:Fast & Furious 6 movie posters
Synopsis: Vin Diesel and Paul Walker return in Fast & Furious 6. The crew has been scattered across the globe since their last heist where they toppled a kingpin’s empire leaving the crew with 100 million dollars. Unable to return home, they realize that there is something missing in their lives.
Diplomatic Security Service agent, Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) has been tracking an organization of lethally skilled mercenary drivers across 12 countries whose mastermind (Luke Evans) is assisted by a ruthless second-in-command who is none other than Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), whom Dom thought was dead. Hobbs asks Dom to assemble his elite team and meet him in London, so that they can stop this crime wave. If he agrees to help Hobbs, Dom and his team will receive full pardon so that they can return home to their families and resume their lives.
Release date: May 10, 2013 (Wide Release) Running time: 143 min. Genre: Drama Director: Baz Luhrmann Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures Screenplay: Baz Luhrman, Craig Pearce Producer(s): Neal H. Moritz, David Dobkin, Ori Marmur, Patrick McCormick Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, Carey Mulligan, Joel Edgerton, Isla Fisher, Jason Clarke, Elizabeth Debicki, Amitabh Bachchan Official Site:thegreatgatsby.warnerbros.com/ Rating:PG-13 Available film art:The Great Gatsby movie posters
Synopsis: Based on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel The Great Gatsby, would-be writer, Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) moves to New York to become a bond salesman. He rents a house, next door to millionaire Jay Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio) in the upscale village of West Egg in New York. Across the bay lives Nick’s second cousin, Daisy (Carey Mulligan) and her old money, philandering husband, Tom Buchanan (Joel Edgerton). Through the Buchanans, Nick meets golfer, Jordan Baker (Elizabeth Debicki). Daisy encourages Jordan to date Nick and Jordan tells Nick about his rich, mysterious, party-throwing neighbour, Gatsby. It is thus, that Nick becomes drawn into the world of the uber-rich with all its treachery and unscrupulousness.
Release date: April 5, 2013 (Wide Release) Running time: 91 min. Genre: Horror Director: Fede Alvarez Studio: Columbia Pictures Screenplay: Fede Alvarez, Rodo Sayagues Mendez Producer(s): Bruce Campbell, Rob Tapert, Sam Raimi Cast: Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez, Lou Taylor Pucci, Jessica Lucas, Elizabeth Blackmore Official Site:evildead-movie.com Rating:R for strong bloody violence and gore, some sexual content and language. Available film art:Evil Dead movie posters
Synopsis: In Evil Dead, the remake of the 1981 cult classic, five twenty-something friends with plenty of free time are staying in a remote cabin. The five friends discover a “Book of the Dead” and proceed (unwittingly) to summon a host of dormant demons, who are inhabiting the nearby woods. The demons possess the youngsters in succession until only one is left to fight for survival.
Release date: March 15, 2013 (Wide Release) Running time: 1 hr. 40 min. Genre: Comedy Director: Don Scardino Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures Screenplay: Jonathan Goldstein, John Francis Daley Producer(s): Chris Bender, Steve Carell, Jake Weiner, Tyler Mitchell Cast: Steve Carell, Steve Buscemi, Olivia Wilde, Alan Arkin, James Gandolfini, Jim Carrey Official Site:theincredibleburtwonderstone.com Rating:PG-13 for sexual content, dangerous stunts, a drug related incident and language. Available film art:The Incredible Burt Wonderstone movie posters
Synopsis: Burt Wonderstone (Steve Carell) and Anton Marvelton (Steve Buscemi) have been raking in millions, for years, performing their death defying illusions in Vegas. When Burt injures Anton during one of the hotbox trick, Anton packs up and moves to the Far East. During Anton’s absence, Guerrilla street magician, Steve Gray (Jim Carrey) develops a large cult following that is overshadowing Burt’s Las Vegas act, which seems stale in comparison. Burt must convince Anton to rejoin the act so that they can rediscover their love of performing and take on Steve Gray.
Release date: March 1, 2013 (Wide Release) Running time: 114 min. Genre: Fantasy, Action, Adventure Director: Bryan Singer Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures Screenplay: Darren Lemke, Christopher McQuarrie, Dan Studney Producer(s): Neal H. Moritz, David Dobkin, Ori Marmur, Patrick McCormick Cast: Nicholas Hoult, Eleanor Tomlinson, Ewan McGregor, Stanley Tucci, Eddie Marsan, Ewen Bremmer, Ian McShane, Christopher Fairbank Official Site:jackthegiantslayer.warnerbros.com Rating:PG-13 for intense scenes of fantasy action violence, some frightening images and brief language. Available film art:Jack the Giant Slayer movie posters
Synopsis:Jack the Giant Slayer is a reimagining of the beloved children’s fairytale, Jack and the Beanstalk. Jack unwittingly opens a gateway that leads to the world of the Giants. This restarts a war as the Giants seek to reclaim the world that they had lost centuries ago. Jack is forced into an epic battle to save not only his own life, but that of the inhabitants of the kingdom and the life of the princess.
First of all I want to say that I am not a teenager or a twenty-something person but I watched this at the 12:01 a.m. showing on the day it was released with my twenty year old son. From the commercials I was expecting something a little more on the comical side but it was not exactly what I expected. I am not big into the whole zombie thing but since this seemed to be a humorous scenario I decided I would give it a try.
The first half of the show I felt that it was a little too slow but about half way through it picked up the pace. The premise of the show was somewhat like a Twilight vampire flick only with zombies. There was some brain eating involved which sort of turned my stomach even though I am quite sure they were not actually eating brains.
You could tell that the main zombie was a nice looking young guy under all that zombie makeup. The main human was a pretty blond girl toting a large weapon which she was using quite skillfully. I know that if an apocalypse were to actually happen we would probably all get some kind of weapon skills but I am sure that we would not all look so sexy while we were doing it.
Regardless, the movie starts out showing the division between the zombies and the humans. The zombies all lived outside of the encampment of the humans and our main zombie (he goes by the name of ‘R’) lives at the airport. His apartment is an abandoned airplane and he has pretty good taste in music in the form of vinyl records. We hear his thoughts throughout most of the first half of the movie, how he can not remember his name, how the only communication there is between zombies is an occasional grunt, and how he likes to envision what the other zombies were when they were humans.
He has a best friend that grunts more than most and it turns out that this zombie has some of the most humorous lines in the movie, mostly in the form of cuss words. I am not a fan of cussing but when a zombie does not do anything but grunt and then when he actually does communicate it comes out in the form of an expletive it does have the effect the movie makers were looking for.
I am not quite certain even now that I have seen the movie whether ‘R’ falls for the girl (Julie) because she is so skillfully wielding a weapon with her flowing blond hair and sexy shorts or if it is because he just got finished eating the brains of her boyfriend (Perry, whom she calls Per) and through eating the brains of the boyfriend got flashbacks of their romance and thus fell in love with her. Every time ‘R’ eats another bite of Per’s brains it shows him another scene out of Julie and Per’s relationship.
He ends up saving her from the rest of the zombies that are in the pack hunting humans with him by wiping some blood on her from his last victim (which happened to be her boyfriend) and walks her back to his airplane. She, of course, is scared out of her mind and wondering what in the heck is going on. He manages to say a couple of words to comfort her, “You safe.”
She tries to escape while he is off getting her some food and lands right in the middle of a pack of zombies who are attracted to her smell. Luckily ‘R’ gets there first and again wipes on his scent and tells her to act dead. She does a bit of an overkill dead imitation and he says, “Too much.” I have to admit I found this humorous.
‘R’ tells her that she has to stay a few days or the others will get suspicious so she does and they bond. Each day ‘R’ seems to become more and more human. She finally gets tired of waiting and ‘R’ is forced to let her go but then the really bad guys show up. These are the “bonies”, the zombies that have been dead so long there is nothing left of them but skeletons and they have become even more aggressive than the zombies at killing humans. They do not have any qualms about going through a zombie to do it either.
Also, since ‘R’ is becoming more and more human the other zombies around him are suddenly picking up more human feelings as well. After seeing Julie grab ‘R’s’ hand when they were running from the bonies the other zombies feel the “love”. The bonies realize that the zombies are becoming human again and they are after the zombies as well.
‘R’ gets Julie out and while he is trying to get her home she gets away and he loses her because she is still not sure about this zombie guy (even though she is beginning to have feelings for him). ‘R’ gets back to the airport and his best friend tells him that the bonies are after him and Julie so he has to find her to warn her. Since he has her boyfriend’s memories he can see how to find her. Oh, and by the way, he ends up confessing that he was the one to eat her boyfriend. It did not go over well but guess what? She forgave him because she knew he could not help himself.
Julie makes a plan to tell her dad about how the zombies are changing back to humans to get his help with the bonies. Did I mention her dad was the head of the whole human contingent? It must have slipped my mind. Anyway, it did not go over well and he is poised to blow out ‘R’s’ brains, evidently that is the only way to put down a zombie. Julie’s best friend steps in and pulls a gun on dear old dad to give them a chance to escape.
‘R’ saves Julie’s life on multiple occasions because of his love for her and becomes more and more human in the process as they run from the bonies. After the umpteenth time of saving her life he finally works up the courage to kiss her (or remembers how) and his eyes change and you can see he is completely human now. And in that instance dad is back and shoots him through the shoulder and says the next one is for his head.
But guess what? He is bleeding in the water and Julie says, “Dad, zombies do not bleed!” To which dad puts down the gun. But in the mean time the other zombies are all fighting the bonies which are coming towards the humans homestead. The dad had put out the alert for all the soldiers to go and stop both the zombies and the bonies but knew they would lose because there were so many of them and not enough humans.
When the soldiers came upon the zombies and bonies and saw that they were fighting each other one of the soldiers said, “Who do we shoot?” The zombie who is the best friend of ‘R’s’ throws them a bonie and says “here!” The whole scene was pretty comical and needless to say the soldiers and the zombies ganged up on the bonies and won. They called into Julie’s dad and told him what was going on and so he lifted the order to kill the zombies.
The humans let the zombies back in to live with them and the healthy humans were all trying to help the unhealthy, previously zombies, learn how to live normal lives and teach them the things they had forgotten. A very handsome ‘R’ and Julie were together in the end. She asked him if he had ever remembered his name and he said no, then she suggested he make up a new name for himself. He declined and said that he was happy just being ‘R’.
The movie was the top movie the weekend it came out. Lots of people seemed to like it and even some of the critics I read gave it around an eighty percent rating. I guess there are a lot of zombie fans out there or people who like to see romance happen in strange places. I could have waited for the DVD but it wasn’t bad even though it sounds just a bit ridiculous. Differences in taste are part of what makes our world go round, right?
Jack Meyers is a regular contributor for www.nannybackgroundcheck.com. As a detective he wants to spread the knowledge of terrible things that can happen when people don’t fully verify the credentials of a caregiver or any employee. He also writes for various law enforcement blogs and sites.
Release date: February 8, 2013 (Wide) Runtime: 1 hr. 47 min. Genre: Comedy Director: Seth Gordon Studio: Universal Pictures Producer(s): Scott Stuber, Jason Bateman, Pamela Abdy Screenplay: Steve Conrad, Craig Mazin Cast: Jason Bateman, Melissa McCarthy, Jon Favreau, Amanda Peet, Tip “T.I.” Harris, Genesis Rodriguez, Morris Chestnut, John Cho, Robert Patrick, Eric Stonestreet, Jonathan Banks Official Site:identitythiefmovie.com Rated:R: for sexual content and language. Official Movie Art:Identity Thief movie posters
Synopsis: In Identity Thief, accounts representative and responsible family man, Sandy Bigelow Patterson (Jason Bateman) has a huge problem. A thief (Melissa McCarthy) in Orlando, Florida has stolen his identity and has racked up a huge debt thereby, destroying his credit. Getting no help from the police, Sandy decides to travel to Orlando and find the thief and bring her back to Denver to face justice. He soon finds out that this isn’t going to be easy as this spunky criminal isn’t going to give up without a fight.