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BradWesley123's Movie Journal- November 2016

Movie list created by BradWesley123 Avatar

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November 3rd

People who added this item 334 Average listal rating (218 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.3

DVD- 1hr. 50min.
First Viewing
It's pretty well-made, sans the sub-par visual effects, but that's really the only positive note that I could give The Legend of Tarzan. The story is dull, with very little forward momentum, and predictable, and the cast is squandered on bland roles (Samuel L. Jackson is probably the highlight, but even he isn't able to cut loose). Movies about man-apes should not be this boring.

Note: Jim Broadbent is in this movie for maybe ten seconds, and gets a "with" credit. I'm assuming that several scenes of his were cut.
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November 4th


DVD- 2hrs. 19min.
First Viewing
There are some evocative moments in Free State of Jones, largely due to the strength of the story alone, and it's fairly well-made (though the visual aesthetic is too digital) with a strong cast to boot. The script, however, is just too fatal a flaw. The framing devices adds nothing, only runtime, and the overview of the subject, rather than an in-depth probe of a moment, stretches everything too thin. Had the history been condensed or distill, allowing for focus, this would've been a rousing history lesson; as is, it's a movie you might fall asleep to during history class.
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November 5th

People who added this item 1660 Average listal rating (1001 ratings) 6.4 IMDB Rating 7

DVD- 1hr. 52min.
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November 6th

People who added this item 162 Average listal rating (93 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 6.8

Netflix- 1hr. 52min.
First Viewing
Stoneheart Asylum is a fairly fun mystery/thriller; the cast is good, the direction solid and the story pulpy enough. While often fun, however, the plot gets stretched thin rather quickly, and things begin to get repetitive and obvious (director Brad Anderson is much better with mood and tone than he is storytelling here). It's a worthwhile viewing, but it could've certainly used a fine-tuning to the script.
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DVD- 1hr. 30min.
First Viewing
The film often works thanks to mood, visuals, building intrigue and Strong's, well, strong performance, but that can't really compensate for a rather dull story that any goes in one direction, listlessly.
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November 7th

People who added this item 250 Average listal rating (180 ratings) 6 IMDB Rating 6.6

DVD- 1hr. 36min.
First Viewing
While I wouldn't go as far as to say that Nerve illuminated me on issues regarding technology and the real world, I would say that it is a surprisingly fun thriller/romp with solid thrills and genuine energy. Sure, it operates in cliches and warms over plot points found in various other films, but it's quite well made, with solid performances and a relatively engaging plot.

Monthly Wesley Award
Best Editing- Madeleine Gavin and Jeff McEvoy
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November 11th


Amazon Prime- 1hr. 32min.
First Viewing
Complete Unknown is an incredibly mixed bag of a film. The acting is superb, with Weisz and Shannon giving typically strong excellent performance and the film excels when their together onscreen. The story, also, works fairly well, at least early on. As it goes along though, the movie stagnates and loses most of its energy. For the performances, almost, exclusively.

Monthly Wesley Award
Best Actress- Rachel Weisz
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November 12th


Netflix- 1hr. 45min.
First Viewing
Sing Street is a movie that gets by almost solely on it's charms and warmth; the coming-of-age story is one that's been done a thousand times, as has the "making a band" movie. By combining those two however, it becomes a genuinely heartwarming film that captures what the best coming-of-age stories can; a genuine feeling of innocence. The songs, cast, and script are all exceptional.

Monthly Wesley Award
Best Picture
Best Sound
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People who added this item 1070 Average listal rating (768 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 8
The Martian (2015)

DVD- 2hrs. 21min.
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November 13th

People who added this item 56 Average listal rating (22 ratings) 6.3 IMDB Rating 6.8
Indignation (2016)

DVD- 1hr. 51min.
First Viewing
A strong acting showcase with palpable tension and fear bubbling under the surface, and occasionally bursting out, Indignation is often more interesting than it is entertaining. Too often than not, scenes drag and silence permeates the screen; not a bad thing, necessarily, if you no how to use it. Restraint is often a problem; too much so, and it reads as dull. That happens often in the film, sans one scene; a meeting in the middle of the film, between Lerman and Letts, that conveys so many emotions from both its characters that the film may have been better off making it the entire film. It's themes of regret and indignation never come across better. Still, its a solid if restrained viewing.

Monthly Wesley Awards
Best Supporting Actor- Tracy Letts
Best Adapted Screenplay- James Schamus
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November 14th


Netflix- 1hr. 38min.
First Viewing
Despite being fairly well made, with solid visual effects and production designs, with a capable cast, The Last Days on Mars is just another monster/slasher movie with a dull script and characters. There is very little here to latch on to, even less to recommend.

Monthly Wesley Awards
Best Visual Effects
Worst Picture
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November 19th


Amazon Prime- 1hr. 30min.
First Viewing
It does follow a similar logline to various other fish-out-of-water/coming-of-age stories, and is a little too slight for my liking, but Morris from America is an enjoyable take on a well-worn story. Films like this live or die by their leads, and this one is lucky to have a newcomer as charming as Markees Christmas as the title character; he makes a genuine character out of Morris, anchoring the film with a gentle humanity. Robinson also shows off a few new shades here, playing his father; the script is fine, but they make the movie.
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People who added this item 530 Average listal rating (386 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 7.5

DVD- 1hr. 46min.
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November 20th

People who added this item 220 Average listal rating (111 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 6.5
Cold Souls (2009)

DVD- 1hr. 41min.
First Viewing
Cold Souls has several strong moments, but the story really never catches fire. There are a few moments of funny, quirky storytelling, but the film oddly opts for a more somber tone (they may have been going for melancholy, but it came off somber to me), often suffocating any possible humor. It does get mildly better as it goes along, but it starts off so lethargically that it feels fairly incomplete. The cast is strong though, elevating most of the material (Giamatti, in particular, gamely plays a version of himself). Had the film leaned a little more into it's strange premise, I think it would've greatly benefited.
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People who added this item 380 Average listal rating (227 ratings) 6.2 IMDB Rating 6.2

Amazon Prime- 1hr. 57min.
First Viewing
Blunt, unsubtle and fairly derivative, The Neon Demon works more on the aesthetic front than on the storytelling one. The film is just marvelously made; the shots, the lighting, sound, makeup, sets, costumes are all worthy of awards. Winding Refn makes the film an alluring fever dream even at it's dullest moments. Had the story not been so damn unsubtle, allowing for genuine critiques or even satire, this could've been a classic. As it is, it is truly beautiful mess.

Monthly Wesley Awards
Best Director- Nicolas Winding Refn
Best Supporting Actress- Jena Malone
Best Cinematography- Natasha Braier
Best Costume Design- Erin Benach
Best Production Design- Elliott Hostetter and Adam Willis
Best Score- Cliff Martinez
Best Makeup
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November 21st

People who added this item 2557 Average listal rating (1575 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 6.9

DVD- 2hrs. 16min.
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November 23rd

People who added this item 753 Average listal rating (458 ratings) 6 IMDB Rating 6.3

DVD- 1hr. 43min.
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November 26th


DVD- 1hr. 41min.
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November 27th

People who added this item 205 Average listal rating (113 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.1

DVD- 1hr. 42min.
First Viewing
1974 is a solid start to the Red Riding trilogy; it does play many new notes, but plays the old ones fairly well. This is thanks to an evocative, brutal mood and strong work from the actors (Garfield and Hall are exceptional). It does get bogged down by brutality though, a symptom of many similar films. Luckily, there's not enough to sink the solid work going on around it.
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People who added this item 371 Average listal rating (247 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 7.9

DVD- 1hr. 59min.
First Viewing
There are various strong moments to be found it Captain Fantastic; the cast is very good, the film making humane, and the script occasionally insightful. It is also, however, too ready to side with it's protagonist's point of view. Showing your characters actions and viewpoints in a positive light is fine, but there's something very disingenuous about a film that doesn't seem capable of considering that it's characters views and actions could be detrimental to those around him. Mortensen elevates the material, adding occasional shades of grey to his character and, by doing so, making his character more complex; had the film been so willing to do the same, it could've been great.

Monthly Wesley Awards
Best Actor- Viggo Mortensen
Best Original Screenplay- Matt Ross
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DVD- 1hr. 42min.
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November 28th

People who added this item 234 Average listal rating (171 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.2

DVD- 1hr. 41min.
First Viewing
The best, and truest, compliment that I could give Bad Moms is that it isn't the painfully unfunny slog that its trailers made it out to be. In fact, it's often funny and, occasionally and only slightly, insightful about the experience of motherhood. Don't let that entirely sway though; its also often a cheaply funny film that trades in stereotypes and typical R-rated drunken debauchery. If it wasn't for the efforts of its trio of leads, the film would fall incredibly flat, but they have a way of making the best of the material. As I said, it's better than I expected.
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Numbers


Number of Movies Watched: 22
Newly Watched: 15
DVD: 16
VHS: 0
Blu-Ray: 0
Streaming: 6
: 3
: 3
Time Spent: 39hrs. 44min.

Critcal


Best New View: Sing Street
Weakest New View: The Last Days on Mars

Added to

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The Complete Wesley: 2016 Movie Journal (12 lists)
list by BradWesley123
Published 1 year, 5 months ago



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