Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell) is back! His news room career took a nose dive after being fired from his anchor position in San Diego, but he is back with GNN – Global News Network. Ron isn’t alone as he ventures into the brave new world of 24 hour news. He brings with him weather man Brick Tamland (Steve Carell), man on the street Brian Fantana (Paul Rudd) and sports guy Champ Kind (David Koechner). Together they will change the face of the news business by doing what no one has ever done before! Starring Kristen Wiig, Jim Carrey, Liam Neeson, Kirsten Dunst, Harrison Ford, Christina Applegate, Vince Vaughn, James Marsden, Meagan Good, Sacha Baron Cohen, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, John C. Reilly, Greg Kinnear.
Anchorman 2 is the long-awaited sequel to the comedy hit from 2004, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy. Only time will tell if this will live up to the expectations set since it was so long in the making. Anchorman 2 is certainly bigger than its predecessor but not necessarily better.
In all honesty I am not a huge fan of this type of comedy. I don’t find the majority of the jokes funny. I am not saying it isn’t funny material it just doesn’t appeal to me. With that said, the pitfall for this movie is that it tries to be too much. You can tell it is attempting to spoof various societal elements centered around the news; all while carrying a “heart warming” (I use that term loosely) story about Burgundy. Ultimately it doesn’t deliver on either. I was pretty much bored most of the film till near the end where one scene saved the day. I won’t give it away because that will take the fun out of it, but the ‘news room rumble’ at the end is worth the wait.
I wish I had more to say about this movie. Basically, its inconsistent most of the way through. The jokes are corny and not all that funny. Plus the story just tries too hard. The actors are decent but no shining performances here. If I didn’t have to review this movie I probably would have waited to rent it and not wasted my time or money at the theater. Take all that with a grain of salt however because everyone has their own breed of comedy and this just isn’t mine but that doesn’t mean it won’t work for you. Something to think about though before heading out to theater to see this one.
6/10 Stars – One scene is all it takes sometimes and Anchorman 2 had at least that but not much else
To quote a line right from the movie, “It’s crap and people can’t stop watching!” This sums up my feelings on Anchorman 2 and pretty much anything Will Ferrell does. Don’t get me wrong, I like Will Ferrell (loved him in Stranger Than Fiction), but c’mon! How many stupid satires can this guy do that basis its laughs on awkward moments and people who laugh at their own jokes. I really didn’t like the first Anchorman and pretty much only think Ferrell did this for the money and fame because it sure as hell has no artistic or memorable value. Not to mention, this movie is a 2 hour stupid moronic comedy that should have been much shorter. Seriously 2 hours?!?! The whole crap near the end when Ron goes blind was a huge waste of time. It got to the point that the only laugher I heard were the idiots on screen laughing at their own stupidity. There were 2 aspects of the movie that kept me from walking out and that was Steve Carell (who was hilarious throughout) and the crazy ending with the large amounts of cameos (where was Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson???). These 2 things keep me from throwing this movie in the same conversation with Bad Grandpa as worst of the year, but they were not enough for me to tell anyone to go see this. I simply don’t get this weak and awkward kind of comedy.
5/10 Stars – Anytime Steve Carell opened his mouth I laughed, but that’s it. Just not a funny movie!
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High-powered New York publicist E.J. Baxter finds her self down one fiance and a job this Christmas holiday. With few options and the new year rolling in E.J. takes a position far outside of her comfort zone in Montana. She makes the best of her originally unwanted situation by not just doing her job but also using her variety of talents to help the local mountain rescue team raise some real money by doing a fun “men of the mountain” calendar. In the end she not only overcomes her heart-break but realizes there is more to life than she originally had in what she considered to be her ideal life. Starring Kristin Chenoweth, Josh Hopkins, Anna Chlumsky, Erin Dilly, Stephen Huszar, Heather Hanson, Jefferson Brown, Craig Eldridge, Chantal Perron, Paul Constable, Aaron Abrams, Frank Chiesurin, Peter Mooney, Joe Norman Shaw, Jessie Pavelka, Mark Bellamy, Ryan Northcott, Matt Embry, Paul Christie, Stephan Dubeau.
12 Men of Christmas is one of the true chick flicks that is quirky and fun but not what I would judge as a great movie and probably not one that I would pick up again or watch every holiday season. Another TV Movie, this one has a decent if predictable story. A lot of girls out there will enjoy this movie but don’t even bother watching it with a guy around because they will scoff at it. Honestly we as women should too because while I enjoyed parts of it I am not proud of myself for it cause the movie objectifies men and is really a bit stupid but sadly it appealed to my girly mushy side. Regarding this as a holiday movie I am not quite sure that it qualifies since it very little of it takes place at Christmas but maybe that is enough for some. For me, I won’t be pulling this out again at Christmas each year. I will stick with my favorite, White Christmas.
5/10 Stars – I can’t say it was good but my girly side enjoyed parts of it.
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We join Thorin and his company of dwarves and their thief Bilbo Baggins after they have successfully crossed the Misty Mountains. They journey forth still pursued by Orcs but never wavering from their goal of reaching the Lonely Mountain. Along the way they must part with Gandolf, deal with some less than friendly elves and convince the people of Lake Town to support them even though their quest could mean the end of the barely surviving little town that has felt the wrath of Smaug once before. And of course should they reach the Lonely Mountain, Bilbo must fulfill his contract and retrieve the legendary Arkenstone. Starring Ian McKellen, Martin Freeman, Richard Armitage, Ken Scott, Graham McTavish, William Kircher, James Nesbitt, Stephen Hunter, Dean O’Gorman, Aidan Turner, John Callen, Peter Hambleton, Jed Brophy, Mark Hadlow, Adam Brown, Orlando Bloom, Evangeline Lilly, Lee Pace, Cate Blanchett, Benedict Cumberbatch, Mikael Persbrandt, Sylvester McCoy, Stephen Fry, Luke Evans.
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is the continuation of Peter Jackson’s vision of J.R.R. Tolkein’s book The Hobbit. This installment of the series exceeds its predecessor in some aspects but in many it falls short and instead of leaving you itching for the next film you feel a bit unsatisfied. I won’t venture to tell you that The Desolation of Smaug is a bad film because it certainly isn’t. However, if you compare it with the LOTR series it won’t quite measure up. There are elements of greatness but not enough to impress you considering you have witnessed the genius of Jackson many times before. There are two things that I truly enjoyed about film. One, the action. There wasn’t as much action in the first Hobbit movie and this one brings it back full force. The action scenes are quick, cunning and enjoyable. The second aspect of the movie that really wowed me was Smaug. He is visually stunning and fearsome. If I didn’t know better I would say it was a real dragon on-screen. You can almost touch his scales and feel the heat of his fiery breath. The addition of Benedict Cumberbatch’s voice caps the Smaug character off perfectly. They couldn’t have chosen a better actor to do the voice.
Now keeping the brilliance of the Smaug animation in mind, I was truly disappointed with a few other scenes. Particularly the barrel rafting scene. The CG was horrendous. When you can’t help but notice it throughout and entire sequence you start to wonder if the entire budget was spent on Smaug leaving little for the other CG required in the film. I expect better considering I have already scene in the likes of the LOTR movies. There are a few other nit picky things that demote this film from an 8 to a 7. The Legolas and Tauriel is flat. Sure we know Legolas from the other movies but we don’t know Tauriel. A very big missed opportunity here for character and story development that the film could have used. Action is great, but action backed with moving story and secrets revealed is even better.
Finally the end. I get that this is part 2 in a trilogy of movies but then is one of those horrible cliff hangers that you see on TV with be “To Be Continued….” in white text after it. The “To Be Continued…” doesn’t appear but you sure feel like it should. Not a good thing. The ending to the first Hobbit was satisfying. They had come to a point in their journey where it naturally could break. Not so here. Oh and don’t even get me started on the title in relation to the movie and its ending. Let’s just say the desolation of Smaug does not happen or if it did I totally missed it and/or I misinterpreted the meaning of the title. I am being picky here because I have more than few films before this to base my expectations on. I still enjoyed the movie, and was on the edge of my seat for the end but I doubt this will make my list for top films of the year and if it does it will be rather low.
7/10 Stars – High expectations breed disappointment, I expected more so I was left with less.
Ok, for the 5th (almost) 3 hour movie in the Lord of the Rings series, this movie ain’t that bad. It is definitely a step up from the first movie that just seemed to drag on and on before anything fun happened. This go round, more characters are introduced (mainly in the Elven world – yes Orlando Bloom is back as Legolas), more action sequences take place and a very memorable encounter with a nicely crafted Dragon ensues. I have to agree with my wife on the poor CGI effects during the river batter between the Orcs and the Elves. It seems like all the money was put into making Smaug flawless and perfect (even though he is mostly in the dark ruins of the Lonely Mountain) instead of applying it to other aspects of the movie where it was needed more. During the scenes at the river, because of the poor flow of the action, it was hard for my eyes to register what was going on because of how choppy it is(because it obviously isn’t real.) For a filler movie between the 1st and 3rd movies, the Desolation of Smaug is a well told tale that keeps the audiences’ attention and doesn’t make it feel like an almost 3 hour film. I understand some people’s difficult investment in the Hobbit movies compared to Lord of the Rings with the vast amounts of story lines and characters it had, but for a Hobbit movie WITHOUT Gollum, this 2nd installment fits in nicely and leaves a nice cliffhanger for the beginning of number 3.
8/10 Stars – Might not be The Two Towers, but it’s a worthy Hobbit film that holds the story until the story’s conclusion.
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Mary Tobin has fond memories of a childhood spent with her family at Christmas Lodge in the mountains. It has been a family tradition dating back to her grandparents. One trip up to the mountains she stumbles upon the old lodge in a sad state of affairs. Jack, son of the original owners is doing his best to restore but he honestly lacks the money and man power to get it done. Mary makes it her personal mission to help Jack restore the lodge to full glory. Starring Erin Karpluk, Michael Shanks, Rukiya Bernard, Rebecca Toolan, Michael Kopsa, Victoria Banks, John Innes, Michael Patric, Scott E. Miller, Peter Benson, Michelle Creber, Alvin Sanders, Keith Martin Gordey.
Christmas Lodge is a touching movie based on the a story by the prolific writer Thomas Kinkade. It is sweet, religious and a great family movie. There are those out there who might think less of Christmas Lodge for its heavy religious slant and talk of faith but for this movie it suits. There isn’t anything spectacular about this movie but it touches your heart and fits the bill of a family christmas film perfectly. Anyone can enjoy this movie in some way even though it’s not super exciting or thrilling. The key to its success is that it’s not just a romance but it also emphasizes the love a family and the power of traditions. A good message for the holiday season.
6/10 Stars – Not a spectacular film but has a little something extra that makes it worth watching.
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Bishop Henry Brougham has been working tirelessly to fund his plans for a new elaborate cathedral. His main hopes for funding rest with a wealthy yet stubborn widow. In his focus on his cathedral he has lost sight of his family and he decided to work in the church in the first place. This where Dudley comes in. Dudley is an angel, sent to help Henry. Dudley helps everyone he meets and everyone including the Bishops family and household love him. Henry who is still focused on his work notices his families attachment to Dudley and believes that Dudley has come to replace him. As Christmas approaches Henry must learn to see what is right in front of him or risk losing it all. Starring Cary Grant, Loretta Young, David Niven, Monty Woolley, James Gleason, Gladdys Cooper, Elsa Lanchester, Sara Haden, Karolyn Grimes, Tito Vuolo, Regis Toomey, Sarah Edwards, Margaret McWade, Anne O’Neal, Ben Erway.
The Bishop’s Wife is a classic black and white christmas movie that is family friendly with a moral lesson to boot. A must watch during the holiday season. The classics always have had something special about them. They tell simple yet powerful stories, many of which had a moral or lesson. Plus the actors back then were pretty much all fabulous. The Bishop’s Wife has great actors, a fabulous, funny, sweet and touching story. What more could you want from a Christmas movie? I think this brings everything great about the holidays together into one movie that is enjoyable every year at the holidays.
8/10 Stars – A classic christmas movie that makes for great watching next to a lighted tree and a warm fire
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Her Review: Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell) is back! His news room career took a nose dive after being fired from his anchor position in San Diego, but he…
Her Review: High-powered New York publicist E.J. Baxter finds her self down one fiance and a job this Christmas holiday. With few options and the new year rolling…
Her Review: We join Thorin and his company of dwarves and their thief Bilbo Baggins after they have successfully crossed the Misty Mountains. They journey forth still pursued…
Her Review: Mary Tobin has fond memories of a childhood spent with her family at Christmas Lodge in the mountains. It has been a family tradition dating back…