The Reel Opinion: October 2011


October 31st, 2011

The Reel Opinion reviews...

in time



     I really had to give this movie a lot of thought. My first impression was that I just kind of liked it. It was better than I thought, but I wasn't wowed. Some things just didn't make sense to me. Why did they decide to turn off the aging gene? The reason was to stop overpopulation. I didn't catch who got to make that decision, but from what I could gather, it was not just America, but worldwide. Time has become the new currency, so those with time live and those that do not have eventually die. After giving the movie some more thought, it was a little deeper than my first impression let on. Was it a masterpiece? No, but it was a good attempt to tell a deep story.

     The ideas that this movie gave about those that have time and those that do not was interesting. You could tell who had it and who didn't by the way acted. One example of this was that if you ran, you must not have time because you were in a hurry. Those with time were never in a hurry because they have all the time in the world.

     The acting was pretty good. Justin Timberlake (Will Salas) wasn't the greatest actor that could have been chosen for this role, but he didn't make me want to leave the theater either. I was able to forget who he was most of the time, so that helped the movie. A couple of times he would deliver a line and I would be reminded of who was playing the role, but that didn't happen too often.

     The breakout role of the movie would have to be Cillian Murphy (Raymond Leon). He played a time keeper, which were the cops of the film. His character was complicated and interesting. I don't want to give too much away about him for anyone that wants to see this film. I would like to see him play the hero sometime. He has been the villain a lot, so it would be a welcome role change.

     The thing I didn't like the most was all of the puns about time. I know that they were just trying to make it a part of what would be their culture, but it just got a little old at times.

     The movie had pretty decent action when it happened, but I think it could have used just a little bit more. I also think that an actor with a little bit more of a track record of action films would have been a better fit for Timberlake's role. A Matt Damon or a Jason Statham probably would have better in the role, but Timberlake didn't do too horrible.  The only problem they had in picking the actors for this film is that they had to look 25 years old or younger.

I am going to say this one is a rental. The idea of the film was good, but it could have been a better movie with some actor changes and a little bit better script. They just need to leave this one alone when it comes to a sequel, but I have a feeling they will try to make one.

Actors: I would say that Justin Timberlake should stick to comedy, but I might have to give some of his serious roles a try after watching this movie. Amanda Seyfried (Sylvia Weis) was good in Dear John and the only actor I liked in Jennifer's Body. Cillian Murphy was good in Batman Begins and Inception.

Director: Andrew Niccol directed a great film called Gattaca. He also wrote that film as well as The Truman Show, one of my favorite movies.

Similar movie: Logan's Run. Definitely Logan's Run.

Tomorrow will be The DVD Release of the Week as well as Trailer Tuesday.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 28th, 2011

The Reel Opinion previews...

in time


     Here is a movie I decided at the last minute to cover. I tried and tried to tell myself that I wasn't going to see this for a review, but in the end I knew I would have to. I probably wouldn't hear the end of it if I didn't review this. I didn't want to see it because of, you guessed it, Justin Timberlake. I will admit that I find him to be pretty funny when he is on SNL. I think he is talented in the comedic sense, but I am not sure I can take him seriously or as an action star. That being said, I have been proven wrong before. I remember thinking that Ben Affleck was going to be horrible in Daredevil. He just didn't seem the action type, but he proved me wrong. Timberlake has a lot more to shake, though. He has the whole music career to get past. To me, this is almost reminiscent of Michael Jackson's Moonwalker. Now I know he played himself in that movie, but he tried to play a tough guy version of himself.

What I am hoping for:

* A good story

     This movie is written by Andrew Niccol. He is the writer of Gattica and The Truman Show, two movies I really like. He also is the director of this movie. He was the director of Gattica as well. I am hoping for another good story from him.

* Timberlake to surprise me

     I want to like Justin Timberlake, I really do. I hope that he proves me wrong in the action genre department. We could use a few new action stars. Surrounding him with good actors such as Cillian Murphy, Amanda Seyfried and Olivia Wilde is a good start.


What I am afraid of:

* The premise not to work

     I like the idea that the trailer shows, but I am afraid it is not going to work well. I just think the whole "running out of time" thing will fall flat.

* Justin Timberlake

     I just don't think I am going to be able to take him seriously. I know he is a talented guy, but some people shouldn't do certain things. My intuition says he should stick to comedy.


That about does it. I will have a review of this movie by Monday, October 31st.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 27th, 2011

The Reel Opinion's Thumbstick Thursday...




     Welcome to a new addition to The Reel Opinion. This is Thumbstick Thursday, where I cover a movie based on a video game or talk about a game that should be a movie. Today's movie is one of the worst of the worst. How is this for a premise which is the arcade route? Two martial arts masters, who are also brothers, are in love with the same woman. This woman gets kidnapped by a local gang. The brothers team up to find and rescue this woman. After defeating the final bad guy, they then fight each other for the affection of the woman. Pretty cool, right? You could also take the Nintendo approach. A guy's girlfriend is captured by a gang. He goes on a mission to rescue her. After defeating the man he thinks is behind everything, it turns out it is his brother who kidnapped his girlfriend because he loves her too. Again, equally cool. Is this what we got for the movie version of Double Dragon? Not even close.

     The only thing comparable to the game is the characters. Billy & Jimmy Lee (Scott Wolf & Mark Dacascos), Marion (Alyssa Milano), Linda Lash (Kristina Wagoner) & Abobo (Nils Allen Stewart) are in the movie. That is it. None of the other characters from the game show up. I was especially not happy with the exclusion of Willie, the main bad guy from the game and some of the game's sequels. Instead the main villain is Kogo Shuko, played by Robert Patrick of Terminator 2 fame. He was created for the film, but was later included in a Double Dragon fighting game as the final boss.

     The movie takes place in the future in the year 2007. Los Angeles has been ravaged by earthquakes and been renamed New Angeles. There is a curfew in place because the street gangs rule the night. The plot of the film revolves around a magic medallion that has been split in two. Kogo Shuko wants the medallion so that he can rule the city. He gets one of the halves at the first of the film.

     Our heroes, Billy & Jimmy, are trying to make money in from what I could make of it, tag team karate tournaments. They fight all the time and this costs them more than one match. They get into some trouble with one of the street gangs led by Bo Abobo. Abobo has to back off after another street gang, led by Marion scares him off. We then find out that Abobo works for the main villain. He is then punished for failing to get the medallion by being pumped full of what are described as super steroids.

     Later, the brothers ask the caretaker of the second half of the medallion, Satori Imada (Julia Nickson), about the medallion. She tells them of it's origin and then gives it to Billy. Pretty much the rest of the movie is the villains trying to get the medallion from the brothers. They end up with the medallion halves in the end which turns them into the Double Dragons. They defeat the bad guys and live happily ever after.

     I only liked one thing about this movie. The use of actors and well know celebrities to do jobs they wouldn't normally do was kind of funny. An example of this was that George Hamilton, Vanna White and Andy Dick, playing themselves, were the local news team.

     The humor of the film was just dumb. One example of this was when Linda Lash captured Alyssa Milano's character, she asked her "Who's the boss?" A little later, Marion captures Kristina Wagoner's character and tells her. "You're lucky. Generally I put people in the hospital". That is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the humor.  Even if you get the jokes, they are still pretty stupid.

     The movie's plot is dumb. The movie's characters are stupid. The movie's action is boring and uninspiring. How could you take a great premise from the game and turn it into this? I wouldn't recommend this movie to my worst enemy.

Tomorrow will be my preview of In Time.

Until next time - Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 26th, 2011

The Reel Opinion Classics VS Series...



     Welcome to the last installment of "Horror-ible Remakes". After three rounds, the remakes are winning 2-1. You couldn't talk about horror movies around Halloween and not talk about the Halloween franchise. Today we will cover the original 1978 version versus the Rob Zombie directed 2007 version. I had seen bits and pieces of the original and none of the remakes before this, so I went into this with a fairly clear slate. As with the other reviews, none of the sequels will be used in comparison. They can only be used as reference. Can the originals tie it up? Let's find out.

Halloween (1978)

     One of the appealing characteristics of Michael Myers (Tony Moran) is not knowing much about him. He is a mysterious killing machine. All we know of him is that he killed his sister after he witnessed her having sex with her boyfriend. He is labeled "evil" by his psychiatrist Dr. Sam Loomis (Donald Pleasence). Years later he escapes the mental hospital, returns to his hometown, and begins chasing Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) for what seems to be no reason whatsoever. We only find out later in Halloween 2 that she is his sister. The only time that we see them share a scene is when Laurie drops off the key to the old Myers' house for her father, a real estate agent, because someone wants to see it. After that, he is fixated on her for the rest of the movie. Was the original plan to make Laurie Michael's sister, I don't know, but for this review it does not matter. Michael stalks her during the day. Later, he kills some of Laurie's friends and then goes after her. He keeps attacking, seemingly gets killed and attacks again. He is eventually stopped by Dr. Loomis, but then disappears again, setting up a sequel. I liked not knowing much about Myers. It added to the intrigue not knowing why he was doing the things he was doing. Creepy stuff.

Halloween (2007)

     The Rob Zombie version pays some homage to the original, but is a more detailed beast than it's predecessor. We see Michael Myers from childhood (Daeg Faerch) to adulthood (Tyler Mane). We get to see why Michael turned out the way he did. We get to see Dr. Loomis's (Malcolm McDowell) failure to treat Michael. We get to see the deconstruction of Michael's humanity. Needless to say, we get so see everything. In this version, we already know that Laurie Strode (Scout Taylor-Compton) is Michael's sister. This gives him a reason to go after her. He is not trying to kill her at first, but trying to reconnect with the only family he has left. He tries to show her a picture of the two together, but she does not understand and attacks him. After that, he gets enraged and tries to kill her. He ends up killing Dr. Loomis and keeps trying to kill Laurie until she shoots him in the head. The rest of the film is pretty similar to the original. I actually liked this one more than I thought I would. It was not too bad.

And the winner is...

     The main difference between these two films is the understanding of Michael Myers. Which is better, knowing everything about him or very little? While I applaud the remake for trying to give Michael a real story, the original wins because there is something really creepy about not knowing. Is he supernatural or just a man? Is he just a man or some kind of evil, unstoppable being. The newer film made him more human, but in a way that was less believable. He took a lot of punishment in both films, so it is harder to believe him surviving in the newer one. Both films are pretty good, but the original ties things up with the win.

Originals: 2 Remakes: 2

     We can't leave things tied up can we? The answer to that is a big no. The way I am going to break up the tie by picking out which of the eight films I reviewed had the best villain. After giving it much thought, the best villain has to go to Jackie Earle Haley's Freddy Krueger with both the 1978 & 2007 versions of Michael Myers being close behind. So in my opinion, the remakes win with the tiebreaker.

     Next month, we have five Wednesdays. The series for November will be titled "Go Ahead, Make My Wednesday". I think you know where I am going with this one. November is about to get a little bit "Dirty".

     Tomorrow I will debut another new Thursday segment.  This one is entitled Thumbstick Thursday.  In this segment, I will talk about a video game based movie or a video game that should be a movie.

Until next time - Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 25th, 2011

The Reel Opinion DVD Release of the Week...

people george

     The DVD release of the week was going to be Captain America. I decided to review something else since I had already reviewed Captain America. It was the first movie I ever reviewed on this blog. Here is a link to that review. The review is near the bottom of the page.

     I was looking to decide which release I would use and saw that a movie was being released that I had seen a premiere for last year at Chicago Comic Con. The People Vs. George Lucas is a great film for any Star Wars fan as well as a fan of the film industry. When I saw this movie, I was surprised that it took both sides of the Star Wars debate on whether George Lucas should keep changing his films.

     The movie is full of interviews, rants and fan films that are extremely entertaining. This is one that I will be picking up and enjoying for years to come.


Other Releases: October 25th, 2011

* Captain America

* Jurassic Park Ultimate Trilogy Blu Ray

* The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes vol. 3 & 4

* Winnie the Pooh (2011)

* Young Justice: Season 1 vol. 2

* Robot Chicken: Season 5


     Today is also Trailer Tuesday. Just go to The Reel Opinion's Facebook page to see trailers for John Carter and This Means War. If you are not a member of the Facebook page, just Hit this link and like it.  It is just that simple.

     Tomorrow is the final installment of "Horror-ible Remakes". Check back to see which Halloween film comes out on top, the 1978 or the 2007 version.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 24th, 2011

The Reel Opinion reviews...

3 musk



     I am really disappointed. I was really looking forward to the Star Wars Episode 1 3D trailer and they didn't show it at the theater I went to. Oh well, now on to the movie. This was a decent film. The 3D did nothing to help it, but all in all the film was pretty fun. The best film involving the Alexander Dumas characters that I have seen is still The Man in the Iron Mask. This one was almost its own beast. It has the characters from the book, but the story is much different. This one is almost setting itself up to be a franchise. I think this could be a good thing with a few adjustments.

     The main characters are pretty good. The standout character is Ray Stevenson as Porthos. I just enjoy the character that enjoys life, but can be serious when he needs to be. Stevenson is slowly making his presence known in movies. Here is hoping that this trend continues. Most of the other actors played there parts well, but none of them really stood out more than Stevenson.

     Orlando Bloom as The Duke of Buckingham was extremely over the top. This actually worked because the character's overdramatizing and cheesiness worked well against some of the seriousness of the character of Athos (Matthew Macfayden). He was almost too serious at times. When he used his dry humor, though, it was pretty good.

     The characters I didn't like were the comic reliefs. The first was Porthos's assistant whose name I can't recall. He was there to laugh at and the movie could have done without him. He had one big part in the plot which was good and that was it. Freddie Fox (King Louis XIII) and Juno Temple (The Queen of France) were equally bad. The problem with this is that both were essential to the plot of the movie. This hurt it a little bit.

     I know it may sound like I didn't really like this movie, but I did. It just had some glaring problems that would need fixing if they are going to make a sequel. I say rent this one if you just want a fun movie. The 3D added nothing to warrant a theater viewing.

Actors: There are a lot here, so here we go.

Matthew Macfayden: Robin Hood (2010)

Milla Jovovich: The Fifth Element

Luke Evans: He is going to be Bard the Bowman in the new Hobbit movies.

Ray Stevenson: Punisher: War Zone

Orlando Bloom: The Lord of the Rings trilogy

Mads Mikkelson: Casino Royale

Logan Lerman: 3:10 to Yuma

Director: Paul W.S. Anderson gets a lot of flak for his work, but I enjoyed Mortal Kombat, Event Horizon, Soldier and Death Race.

Similar movie: This movie reminded me a lot of Pirates of the Caribbean as well as the Disney version of The Three Musketeers.  The Man in the Iron Mask is pretty good as well.

Tomorrow will be The DVD Release of the Week and Trailer Tuesday.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.



October 21st, 2011

The Reel Opinion previews...

3 musk

Rated PG-13

     I am a big fan of The Three Musketeers. I have seen any movie I can get my hands on that comes out involving the characters. I just have a thing for the camaraderie and the swordplay. They are just my kind of movies. I always get excited about these movies. I like the look of the film from what I have seen in the trailer. I like the cast choices, especially Ray Stevenson and Milla Jovovich. I am big fans of both of them. The only thing I am not excited for about this movie is that it is in 3D. Even if the theater has it in 2D, I have decided that I will take the plunge this time. The main reason is that they are going to show the Star Wars: Episode 1 3D trailer before the movie. Am I a sucker for wanting to do this? Yes, but at least I admit it.

What I am hoping for:

Something different

* From the look of the trailer, this is going to be a different spin on the story. I don't have a problem with that. I like the idea of airships and other things that didn't exist in the time period. I just don't want the things they add to be dumb.

Good action & story

* The problem with these types of movies is that sometimes you get a good story, but the action is lacking. Sometimes the opposite is true. I want both. I want to be entertained and I want to think.


What I am afraid of:

The 3D

* I already know the answer to this one, but you never know. Someday a movie might come along that makes me change my mind about 3D.

Underused talent:

* There is a lot of good actors on the roster for this film. I hope that they all get the screen time that they need to showcase there talents.

I will have a review of this movie by October 24th.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 20th, 2011

The Reel Opinion's At First Glance...



     This fall season, I started to watch a new show called Person of Interest. I know, I know, it is on another network. The concept of the show seemed very interesting to me, but I am mainly watching it for one reason: Jim Caviezel. Caviezel is an actor who I have admired for some time now. If he is in a movie, chances are I will watch it. He just brings everything he has to the parts he plays. The first time I really noticed him was for his role of Edmond Dantes in The Count of Monte Cristo.

     I am a big fan of revenge stories. I usually enjoy a villain getting what he deserves in the end. Caviezel played the part of a man torn between two actions. Should he exact revenge on those that wronged him or should he take back what is his and move on with his life. This is one of those movies where the acting is so good that you forget you are watching a movie. Caviezel is part of a great cast that includes Guy Peirce as his mortal enemy Fernand Mondego, Luis Guzman as Jacopo and the new Superman Henry Cavill as Fernand's son Albert. This is just a small part of the great ensemble that makes this movie great. Caviezel is who really stands out amongst these other great actors. His portrayal of Edmond is spot on. In the end, you can't tell what decision he is going to make.  Not knowing is what made the end of this film great.

I had seen him in other movies before, but this is the film that made me take notice.


Other Projects:

Person of Interest (TV Show)

The Passion of the Christ


The Thin Red Line

G.I. Jane

Wyatt Earp



Tomorrow will be my preview of The Three Musketeers.

Until next time - Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 19th, 2011

The Reel Opinion Classics VS Series...



     Welcome to the third installment of "Horror-ible Remakes". After two rounds, we are tied 1-1. The Nightmare on Elm Street is a franchise I know a lot about. Other than Freddy vs. Jason, I have seen every movie with Freddy Krueger in it. I even used to watch the show where Freddy would intro different horror stories like the Crypt Keeper. That is how big of a fan I was. Today we will be covering the 1984 and 2010 versions of the film. As with the other movies in this series, we will only compare the two films. Other films in the series will only be used for reference.

Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

     As I mentioned before, I grew up with this series. The problem here is that the first movie I ever saw in the franchise was Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors. The reason this is a problem is that this is the movie in which Robert Englund (Freddy Krueger) started to make the role a little more comedic. This is the movie where he delivered the line "This is it, Jennifer. Your big break in TV. Welcome to prime time, b****" before smashing her head into a TV. I don't remember if this was the first one liner in the film, but it is the one I remember the most. After that, every time Freddy offed somebody, he would deliver some kind of funny line. In this aspect, Robert Englund was a genius. He has very good comedic timing.

     Of course, we are only talking about the original movie. The first movie was supposed to be scary. It wasn't really that scary. Freddy looked creepy, but that was about it. The things that he did really weren't very scary. I also felt the blood was a little over the top. When someone is killed and the whole room is covered in blood, that is just a little too much. The acting was cheesy and the script pretty weak. I really didn't enjoy this film very much. I think I prefer the funny Freddy over the "scary" Freddy.

Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)

     Going into it, I really wanted this movie to be creepy and it delivered. This time, Freddy Krueger is played by Jackie Earl Haley. The only experience I had with Haley before this movie was his performance in Watchmen. That would be enough for me. His performance as Rorschach was one of the best performances I had ever seen. He was about the only thing I liked about that movie. To make a long story short, he was extremely scary and creepy as Freddy. His look, the things he said and the way he said it just really creeped me out. The man is a great actor. He was good, but was the movie? Yes it was. The story was better than the original. Before he was killed by the parents, Freddy was a child murderer in the original. In the remake he was a child molester. Also, the movie shows doubt on whether Freddy really committed the heinous acts. This film took the original and made it its own.

And the winner is...

     The remake knocks out the original in a big way. I'm sure I'll hear about that statement, but that is how I feel. As a horror film, the remake just does it better.

Originals: 1 Remakes: 2

Next week is the film franchise that is a staple of the season, Halloween.  I pit the 1978 and 2007 versions against each other.

Tomorrow is the debut of a new Thursday segment called At First Glance.  In this segment, I will pick and actor or actress and talk about the first time I really noticed their work.

Until next time - Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 18th, 2011

The Reel Opinion DVD Release of the Week...

batman year one


Release date: October 18th, 2011

     This release of the week is the next animated film from DC Animation. Most of the time they are pretty good, with a few misses along the way. The reason I am looking forward to this story is because the comic this movie is based on is the book that inspired Batman Begins. Also, I usually enjoy the animated Batman films that DC Animation puts out.

     I am pretty interested in their choice of voices to use for this project. As a fan of Batman: The Animated Series, I am a die hard fan of Kevin Conroy, who voiced Batman for the show. What I am trying to say is that I always want DC Animation to get him to voice Batman and am a little disappointed when they don't. Voicing Batman for this movie is Ben McKenzie of The OC and Southland fame. I liked him in Southland, but I'm not sure if he is Batman material. However, I have been wrong before in that department before. Bryan Cranston of Breaking Bad is voicing Jim Gordon. I think he has the ability to pull that part off well. I would welcome him to be Jim Gordon in the live action movies if Gary Oldman hadn't already mastered the part.

All in all, this is an interesting project for me. I'm really looking forward to it.


Other Releases:

October 18th, 2011

* Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

* The Howling Reborn

* Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

* Star Wars: The Clone Wars Season 3

* Cape Fear Blu Ray

* Bad Teacher

* The Crow Blu Ray

* The Goonies Blu Ray

     Today is also Trailer Tuesday. Today we have trailers for One for the Money and Underworld: Awakenings. Just go to The Reel Opinion's Facebook page to see them. To do that, just Hit this link and like it.

     Tomorrow will be the third installment of "Horror-ible Remakes". The VS Series this week will pit The Nightmare on Elm Streets from 1984 and 2010 against each other.

Until next time - Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 16th, 2011

The Reel Opinion reviews...

the thing

Rated R


     I mentioned in my preview for this movie that I had not seen the original. If it is anything like this film, I don't want to. This movie is just downright boring and unoriginal. I didn't hate everything about it, but there was not much to like.

     I thought that the alien in the movie was okay. It kind of reminded me of the aliens in Starship Troopers. You only saw the true alien a few times. The rest of the time it was different versions of people being controlled by the alien. They reminded me of the creatures in Legion, which is to say they didn't impress me too much.

     The scares were extremely predictable. There was only a couple of time where I thought, "That was cool." This movie used too many cliché scares that you could see coming a mile away.

     I liked some of the characters, but they were not given much to work with. I really liked Mary Elizabeth Winstead's character Kate Lloyd and Joel Edgerton's character Braxton Carter. Other characters were okay, but there was really not much character development for anybody but the main two. You got to watch Kate change from weak to tough. Braxton was the typical hero character that you expected him to be, but Edgerton is just a good actor so the part didn't seem as bland as it could have.

     The pacing of the movie was slow and boring. Not a lot happened between the scares. It seemed as if the plot was just being dragged along until the next alien attack was to happen. The end of the film kept going and going through the credits.  That got old real quick.  Boring, boring, boring.

     As if you could tell already, skip this film. If you have seen the original, this film might peak your curiosity to see if it is a true prequel. I can't think of any other reason to see it.

Actors: Mary Elizabeth Winstead is pretty good in Live Free or Die Hard and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. Joel Edgerton is incredible in the movie Warrior, which finally made it to the Decatur area theaters a few weeks ago. Go see it.

Director: I have not seen the other two movies directed by Matthijs van Heijningen Jr. and this movie doesn't make me too excited for any other films.

Similar movies: The location of the movie reminded me of 30 Days of Night & Whiteout, both far superior films compared to this one. The alien reminded me of a great film called The Puppet Masters, which again is a far greater film.

Tuesday is the DVD Release of the Week and Trailer Tuesday.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 14th, 2011

The Reel Opinion previews...

the thing

Rated R

     In researching this movie, I could not figure out if it is a prequel or a sequel or a remake. Most stories I read called it a prequel, but that does not matter to me. I have not seen the original, so I have no expectations for this movie based on the original film. I like a good monster/alien movie every now and then, so I hope this one is at least entertaining.

What I am hoping for:

* Something different

     I want this to be different from the typical "The creature is just around the corner or right behind me" scare fest. Show some originality, please.

* Original looking monster/alien:

     I asked for this when I went to see Apollo 18 and Cowboys & Aliens. Don't give me the "Been there, done that" creature.


What I am afraid of:

* The typical scares

     This is pretty explanatory. The main problem with horror/creature films is that they use the same methods over and over again. I am afraid this will be the same.  Remember when the alien from the movie Alien burst out of the guy's stomach for the first time?  That was originality.

* Boring & predictable characters and plot

     Most of the time when I watch these kinds of movies, I can usually tell who is going to bite the dust near the beginning of the film. I am looking for some surprises in this department. Plus, I would really enjoy a plot that I didn't know what was going to happen right away.

I will have a review of this film by Monday, October 17th.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 13th, 2011

The Reel Opinion Debate...

fav movie

     This weeks question may or may not be a debate. It all depends on how many get involved in the discussion. The question is simple, what is your favorite movie of all time and why? To respond to the question, just go to The Reel Opinion Facebook page.  To do that, just Hit this link and like it.  It is just that easy.

Tomorrow will be my preview for the prequel/remake of The Thing.

     Next week on Thursday, I will be debuting a new segment called At First Glance. I will pick an actor and talk about the first time I really took notice to them. It could be their first film or their last. It could be a music video or some random commercial. Who knows?

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 12th, 2011

The Reel Opinion Classics VS Series...



     Welcome to the next installment of "Horror-ible Remakes". After the first round, the originals are up 1-0. Today we will be covering both the 1974 and 2003 versions of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Before this review, I had not seen either of the movies. I had seen a little of both The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (1986) and Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation, but both were a long time ago. Going into this, all I really knew about the movies was the character of Leatherface. What I would discover by watching these movies is that I had more questions about them than answers.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)

     After watching this movie, I wondered why anyone would ever like it. I just felt it was really stupid the whole way through. This is not me ripping on slasher films, because there are some that I really like. There just was no real story to this film. All, and I do mean all, of the characters are annoying. That goes for the good guys and bad guys. The only scene of the whole movie that I liked is the first time you see Leatherface. It is just really creepy when he comes through that door for the first time. The rest of the movie was dumb. It was a lot of running and screaming. That's about it. The dinner, the chases and the music were just few of the things that made me just want the movie to end. Other than the one scene I mentioned above, which came pretty early in the film, there was nothing to like about this one.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)

     There really isn't much to say about this one either. It is almost as dumb as the original. The biggest difference is this one actually tried to have a story. The heroes and most of the villains weren't as annoying as the original. This one tried to have a side story involving stolen children being raised by the family of villains. This one had better music. Last, but certainly not least, this one had R. Lee Ermey. If you don't know who that is, just watch Full Metal Jacket. The man plays nuts better than anybody. I'll just leave it at that. I would want to ruin the experience for anybody.

And the winner is...

     If it isn't already obvious, the remake is the winner by a long shot. That being said, it is as dumb as the original when it comes down to it. If I had to watch one, it would be the remake. It was at least tolerable. Plus the ending kind of creeped me out.

Originals: 1 Remakes: 1

Next week will be a franchise I grew up with. A Nightmare on Elm Street 1984 and 2010 are the next films to go to war.

Tomorrow is The Reel Opinion Debate.  It will be a little different this time.

Until next time - Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 11th, 2011

The Reel Opinion DVD Release of the Week...

green lantern

Rated PG-13         Release Date: October 14th, 2011


     This is a DVD Release of the Week that gets mixed reactions from me. This movie had a lot going for it, but that stuff got pushed to the back burner for stuff that was not as good. You had great actors such as Geoffrey Rush (Tomar-Re), Michael Clarke Duncan (Kilowog) and Clancy Brown (Parallax) who were extremely underused to make way for bad performances by Blake Lively (Carol Ferris) & Peter Sarsgaard (Hector Hammond) who were just horrific in their roles. Tim Robbins (Senator Hammond) and Angela Bassett (Dr. Amanda Waller) just seemed to be there to collect a paycheck. Bassett will probably be back for a sequel. They should have just gotten Pam Grier to play the part. She played the same role in Smallville.

     Ryan Reynolds (Hal Jordan) and Mark Strong (Sinestro) are the strongest roles in this film. Both played the parts well and will continue to do so in sequels.

     I am hoping that this extended cut will add some more of the Green Lantern Corps back in to the movie. With a whole nine minutes added back, I don't expect too much improvement. This movie was somewhat enjoyable, but not great. Expand on some of the roles of the great talent that was underused and a sequel will probably be a better movie.


Other releases this week:

October 11th, 2011

* Bones – Season 6

* Horrible Bosses

* Taylor Swift: Journey to Fearless

* Chuck – Season 4

* Zookeeper

* Judy Moody and the NOT Bummer Summer

     Today is Trailer Tuesday.  Go to The Reel Opinion's Facebook page to watch trailers for The Raven and Tower Heist.  If you have not joined and would like to, it is easy.  Just Hit this link and like it. 

     Tomorrow will be the second installment of "Horror-ible Remakes". This VS Series installment will pit The Texas Chainsaw Massacre films from 1974 & 2003 against each other.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 10th, 2011

The Reel Opinion reviews...

real steel

Rated PG-13


     Here we go again. I rip into a movie and then I have to eat my words. Have you ever seen a movie that just makes you smile? You could be having the crappiest day ever and it just makes that all go away for a while. That is what this movie was to me. I worked a long day with very few breaks. I was dead tired and didn't even feel like going to the movie on Friday. I went early anyway and was glad that I did. Real Steel is just a feel good movie. I smiled through and enjoyed all of the film, from beginning to end.

     I will get what I didn't like out of the way. I could have used a few more robot fights. That is about it. I have nothing more to add. Maybe a director's or extended cut is in order for the DVD release.

     This movie's greatest asset is its heart. It tugs on the old heart strings and is not ashamed of it. Hugh Jackman (Charlie Kenton) is a man who abandoned his girlfriend when she got pregnant. Ten or so years later she dies. Kenton is tracked down so that he can sign over the rights to his son Max (Dakota Goyo) to his rich aunt and uncle. Kenton needs money to buy a fighting robot, so he strikes a deal with the uncle to take the kid for the summer in exchange for money. This is where our adventure begins and this is all I will give away.

     Hugh Jackman was at his best. I think this is his best role that I have seen since his first time as Wolverine in X-Men. I know he has been around a while, but he was the breakout star of this film. Somehow they need to make a sequel to this just so he can play the role again. Watching his character change throughout the film was outstanding.

     Dakota Goyo was great. He showed a lot of range in his character throughout the film. He needs a little work, but he was pretty good for a kid.

     Evangeline Lilly (Bailey Tallet) was a great love interest. She and Hugh Jackman make a great movie couple. Their story was sweet and just what this movie needed to make it complete.

     The effects were not overused at all. Like I mentioned earlier, I could have used a few more. What was used was very well done. The robots were very believable and seemed real most of the time.

     I was glad my first impression was wrong. This movie had a great story that made me just feel good. Go see it. You don't have to like boxing to love it. You don't have to love robots to love it. It is still not the best movie of the year so far. That honor still goes to Planet of the Apes, but it is darn close.

Actors: I like Hugh Jackman in the first two X-Men movies and The Prestige. His three word cameo in X-Men: First Class was also outstanding.

Director: For Shawn Levy, I wasn't really a fan of Night at the Museum, but I did like Date Night.

Similar movie: I am surprised to say this, but this movie was a lot like Rocky…with robots. Just like Rocky, it needs a sequel.

Tomorrow will be The DVD Release of the Week and Trailer Tuesday.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 7th, 2011

The Reel Opinion previews...

real steel

Rated PG-13

     I not going to lie, I have ripped on this movie since I saw my first trailer for it. I lovingly dubbed it "Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots: The Movie" like just about everybody else. I was just taken aback by the very concept of this movie. The fact that there is actually a Battleship movie coming out that looks really dumb just makes me wonder where movies are going. I mean, is Candy Land next? Wait, it is? What about Monopoly?  That one also?  What's next, Hungry Hungry Hippos? That sounds like it could be a horror flick. Anyway, whether or not this is really based on the game, this movie's trailer just didn't connect with me the first time I saw it. I started to soften up a little after seeing more and more of this film. Do I think it is going to be a cinematic classic? Not really, but I think it might be fun.


What I am hoping for:

* Good story

     My hope is that this movie has a lot of heart. I'm not expecting Shakespeare, but I would like an entertaining story. I think it has the potential, but who knows?

* Hugh Jackman, the good actor

     Hugh Jackman has been about fifty/fifty with me. I have liked him in some things and could not stand him in others. I just want the actor that showed up for the first two X-Men movies and The Prestige.


What I am afraid of:

* Too much CG

     I am hoping this movie is not just a CG fest. Yes, I know all of the robots are CG, but I want the other characters to have a lot of impact on the film.

* That my first impression will be right

     I am afraid that my first impression of this movie will be spot on. I want this to be good, but I am afraid it is not going to be. I hope I am wrong. I will gladly admit that.  I like movies about robots and want this to be good.

That about covers it. I will have a review of this movie by Monday, October 10th.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 6th, 2011

The Reel Opinion Dreamcast casts the remake/reimagining of...


     I watched Scarface for the first time the other day. I didn't think it was great, but I really liked Al Pacino in it. They have a remake/reimagining in the works to be released a couple of years from now. I want to know who you would put in the part of Tony Montana. Would he still be named Tony Montana? Would the character stay Cuban or become another nationality? I have a feeling that is what they are going to do, but who knows.

What do yo think. Just go to The Reel Opinion's Facebook page to respond. To do that, just Hit this link and like it.

Tomorrow will be my preview of Real Steel.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.



October 5th, 2011

The Reel Opinion Classics VS Series...

friday 13th


     The easy explanation for the VS Series is that it pits an original movie against the remake of it. This being October, I decided to go with the big four of horror movies and let them duke it out to see which ones are better. The first movies that will be competing are the Friday the 13th movies. Now, the problem with this is that the remake take elements from the first four movies. I have decided that does not matter. It will be one on one. The original versus the remake. No other sequels will come into play other than in reference. This is the first installment of "Horror-ible Remakes".

Friday the 13th (1980)

     I remember being confused the first time I watched this movie. You see, I saw it after some of the sequels came out. I was only two years old when this movie was released. The reason I was confused was I wondered why they hadn't showed Jason throughout the whole movie. As a fan of horror villains back then, I was pretty bummed out when the big reveal was that it was Jason's mom and not him. That was then, but this is now. In watching the movie more recently helped me to realize the genius behind the film's villain.

     They made you think it was three different people throughout the film: Crazy Ralph, Steve Christie and Jason, back from the dead. They never hinted that Jason's mom might be involved until she showed up near the end. The only mention of her was that she had moved away after her son drowned. They kept her well hidden until the reveal. Now in later films, we learn that Jason was not really dead and the films become more supernatural. This film, however, was just a mother who went crazy and was out for revenge. The counselors were pretty forgettable and the dialogue was pretty dumb, but the way that Jason's mom stalked her victims was the real reason this movie was worth the watch.

Friday the 13th (2009)

     This film borrows from the first four Friday the 13th films, but mostly from the first two. They show Jason's mother being killed at the first while Jason looks on from a distance. They then cut to now where some campers are up near Camp Crystal Lake for different reasons. Some are there to get away, while two of the other campers are there to find a legendary pot farm. I bring this up because later in the film, somebody else is taking pot from this farm and Jason kills the guy. So this makes this Jason's pot farm. So my question is "Does Jason use the pot to lure in stupid kids so he can kill them or is he really just a big pothead himself?". That is a joke of course. I really think he uses the pot to lure the kids in so he can have revenge on the kids of the world for killing his mother. Also, unlike the Jason from the original films, this Jason is smart. He seems to know how a lot of things work, such as electricity and traps. He just didn't seem like the lumbering idiot from the originals.

     One thing I liked was the story of the guy looking for his sister. This helped because one thing I notice about a lot of horror movies is that sometimes you root for the bad guy. In this case, the siblings give you a reason to root for them. She is captured and he is trying to find her. It is a good thing you identify with these two because the rest of the group are pretty annoying.

And the winner is...

     The characters are about the same in both films, other than the brother and sister of the sequel, and are pretty forgettable. I think it comes down to villain against villain.  Jason is a smarter villain than his counterpart in the original's sequels, but we are not comparing him to those movies, but , only the original., This was a tough one to decide, but I have to go with original. The way that the killer was hidden from the viewer was the deciding factor. I'm sure not many people saw it coming. The remake puts up a good fight, but falls short.

Originals: 1 Remakes: 0

Next week will be a franchise I have had little experience with. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is the next to step up and fight.

Tomorrow is another Reel Opinion Dreamcast.  Friday is the preview of Hugh Jackman's new film, Real Steel.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.




October 4th, 2011

The Reel Opinion DVD Release of the Week...

pulp fiction

Rated R                Release Date: October 4th, 2011

     I love The Lion King. It is my favorite animated Disney movie of all time. It is one of my favorite animated movies of all time. It is one of my favorite movies of all time. The reason it is not the DVD Release of the Week is because I am saving my review of it for later. I will call it an honorary DVD Release of the Week. I am getting three copies of it to put away for me and my two sons.

     That being said, along with The Usual Suspects, Pulp Fiction is one of the movies that got me to really love and appreciate films. When this was released on video in 1996, I had never seen anything like it. The look, acting and the music of that film really stuck a cord with me right away. I started to follow five or six different actors because of this movie. I had to have the soundtrack for this film as well. I wore out that cassette tape, yes I said cassette tape, so fast and could quote every lyric.

     The best thing about this movie is by far Samuel L. Jackson's character Jules Winnfield. Not to downgrade anybody else in this movie, but he ran the show. If you have not seen this movie, the diner scene he shares with Tim Roth is one of the most powerful scenes ever caught on film. On a joking side note, I wanted a wallet that said "B.M.F." so bad after that. This movie gets a lot of flack for the topics that it covers and the language and imagery, but this scene alone is worth a watch.

     This is definitely not one for the kiddies. It is a very adult themed movie. It is not for everybody, so watch it at your own discretion. Though I don't think he has been too good as of late, this is the movie that made me want to watch other Quentin Tarantino movies. I watched Jackie Brown, which also comes out today on Blu-Ray, & Re, ser, voir Dogs which are two other great Tarantino films.

Today is also Trailer Tuesday featuring the trailers for Contraband and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. To see these, go to The Reel Opinion's Facebook page. To join, just Hit this link and like it.

Tomorrow will be the first installment of "Horror-ible Remakes". This will be a VS Series month. The first films reviewed will be Friday the 13th (1980) vs. Friday the 13th (2009).

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or disagreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.





October 3rd, 2011

The Reel Opinion reviews...

dream house

Rated R

     I will just come out and say it, "I officially hate trailers now". Why do they have to show us so much. Doing the reviewing job I do now, trailers are a part of the job whether I like it or not, but that still doesn't excuse the ones that show us pretty much everything that is going to happen in the film. I really liked this movie. The problem is I knew most of what was going to happen just by watching one trailer. The shocking things that did happen were not as good as they could have been. If you didn't know what was going to happen already, this would have been a decent film.

     Here is what I would have liked if I had not seen pretty much the whole movie already: The whole movie, from the happy start to the som, ewhat creepy middle to the oddly happ, y ending. I like the characters, plot and the look of this film. Too bad it was ruined for me. I even liked the predictable plot twist I didn't know about. It worked with this film.

     Here is how I will rate this one. I you saw the trailer, wait for the DVD. It is still a pretty good film. If you know nothing about the movie, you could go either way. If you waited for video, not a problem. If you go to the theater to see it, it is pretty good.

Actors: I have liked pretty much everything Daniel Craig has been in. My favorite Rachel Weisz movies are Enemy at the Gates and Confidence. For Naomi Watts, I would pick The International and Eastern Promises.

Director: I have not seen a lot of Jim Sheridan's work, but he directed My Left Foot which was pretty good.

Similar movies: This movie felt like The Sixth Sense in a few ways. In a small way, it had a little bit of film Identity in it as well.

Tuesday is the DVD Release of the Week as well as (grumble) Trailer Tuesday.

Until next time – Geno

Questions, comments or dis, agreements? Contact me on Facebook. Hit this link and like it.





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