Review: The Notebook (2004)

“So it’s not gonna be easy. It’s going to be really hard; we’re gonna have to work at this everyday, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever, everyday. You and me… everyday.”
– Noah

SYNOPSIS: A poor yet passionate young man falls in love with a rich young woman, giving her a sense of freedom, but they are soon separated because of their social differences. – via IMDB

So I recently decided to give this movie another squizz, haven’t seen it since it came out pretty much, and I liked it well enough then. So I popped in the soppy romance and got watching, and for the most part, this is a pretty good romance (but seriously, OTT soppy, just putting it out there).

Like, I would love to just come here and be like “Ryan. Gosling.” and leave it at that, but I suppose I can say a few more things about it.

I much preferred watching the scenes between Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams than the older couple – they had great chemistry and are just too beautiful to look at. The scenes between an old Allie and Noah are supposed to pack a bigger punch, but for me their scenes just felt a little off, and I am not sure why. They just didn’t flow as well as the scenes from earlier, though the message is still crystal clear.

The romance between Allie and Noah is not at all unheard of, but it is really nice to sit and watch them together. They have so little in common in a lot of ways, yet they work. They bring out the best and the worst in each other, but they love each other passionately, that cannot be denied. Watching Allie’s parents and their treatment of both their daughter and especially Noah makes me mad. So what if he is not rich? I am not saying this as a romantic or anything like that, but happiness really is about more than money (though let’s not even pretend that money can’t help you on the road to some happiness). Classism was definitely an issue in their relationship, but only on the outside. I burned with embarrassment to watch Noah have lunch at Allie’s family and be treated the way that he was, because that lacks class, and yet Allie is accepted with open arms in the “poor” house and not judged. Okay getting off this boat now.

I believe that Ryan Gosling was cast in this because he was relatively unknown (will give them that) and “not handsome”. Seriously, someone should have gotten their freaking eyes checked before they went that route. Dafuq? Most women see eye to eye with me on this one. I also had a good laugh watching this and thinking “pre Photoshop”. Man, Gosling really is gorgeous. But this is not a post all gushing about Gosling. But for the record, we love Gosling.

I am not really a fan of James Marsden (Cyclops, really), but man oh man, he is so good here, and I really liked him and found him to to be super sweet. Allie really did know how to pick them.

Ryan. Gosling. Really, that is all.

For what it is, The Notebook is a decent movie. Soppy as hell, but it’s a pretty decent watch. I definitely feel that my views on the movie have changed a lot more since I watched it when it first came out, when I was a young rugrat starting high school with no real concept of a relationship. The story has stuck with me since then, the main part of it, at any rate. I think this is definitely more in the chick flick category though!

Review: Red Eye (2005)

“Sometimes bad things happen to good people.”
– Jackson Rippner

SYNOPSIS: A woman is kidnapped by a stranger on a routine flight. Threatened by the potential murder of her father, she is pulled into a plot to assist her captor in offing a politician. – via IMDB

I watched this in cinema when it came out, and never went back to it, and there were only certain things that stuck with me after, such as Murphy being a fantastic villain, and Rachel McAdams sure knowing how to wield a hockey stick, and how this all happened on a plane. I saw it the other day and thought I would give it a shot again, I usually really like Craven’s work.

Again, Cillian Murphy is a great villain. He is so charming and all initially and you are like nice, smooth guy, and just like that *snaps fingers* he turns into this menacing, super scary dude. The transition is seamless and amazing. Rachel McAdams, too, is your generic heroine for a horror, but sadly as much as she fights back, she never comes across as having spine (until that hockey stick, man). That is not to say she wasn’t good, she was actually solid, but not so memorable as to stay with you long after (hem hem Sidney Prescott).

Do not expect something deep from the story. Heck, some questions never get answered and some motives are never explored (who sent him, why was the whole things going down that he was sent in for anyway, these are just a few questions). The main reasons seem like a way to just throw these two performers together to get a scary movie out of a woman being terrorised on a plane, but it also requires that you suspend ridiculous amounts of belief, and there is not even much of a payoff for doing so.

It’s a pretty fun, light, fluffy movie though. Decent horror night material, but there are better ones at the end of the day. Such a far cry from Scream and A Nightmare on Elm Street, but worth a watch to be sure.

Review: Doctor Strange (2016)

“Death is what gives life meaning. To know your days are numbered and your time is short.”
– The Ancient One

SYNOPSIS: A former neurosurgeon embarks on a journey of healing only to be drawn into the world of the mystic arts. – via IMDB

Goodness, it only took me forever to get to this! Finally I did so, and I must say, it is a Marvel film. It’s just what you expect. Good actors, decent story, decent effects, a silly love interest thrown into the mix, and some humour… you know, the regular recipe. This felt like your average Marvel film, which is both a good and a bad thing. It means you get a consistent viewing experience on the one hand, and on the other, it’s pretty generic and won’t stay with you forever. Yes. I said it.

I didn’t buy into the hype when this came and people lauded it. That is done for all Marvel releases, and only some of them are actually worthy of it. That being said, I was still interested to see what the studio would do with this, especially when I heard it get compared to things like Inception and The Matrix. I needed to see. I agree I can see where some of these comparisons come in, but unlike the other movies, there is not real stroke of brilliance here. For all the magic and sorcery that was spoken about, it just didn’t have the same vibe and feel here. It felt like things were rushed a bit, yet the movie felt overly long – yes, the pacing was a bit of an issue.

Doctor Strange did look good though. Really good. There were actually way too many effects going on for me, but I also think it was handled really well and looked awesome. The movie was also carried by an exceptionally good cast, and they all performed as best they could with the material they were given.  I think Cumberbatch was a fantastic choice to play Doctor Strange. There was the super awesome cape (I totally need one of those), and I enjoyed some of the humour. Wong was the best, and there was all sorts of mystical knowledge to be explored. It even had Mads Mikkelsen in it, peeps. But all of that could not save the movie. Ultimately it is rather forgettable. There is a very unfortunate love story squashed in, the pacing is all over the show, the story is actually pretty damn weak, and it never really goes for gold. Well, it feels like it doesn’t.

At the end of the day I was not bowled over as most people were. It is not a bad movie, not by a long shot. It is entertaining, looks good, and has an awesome cast attached to the project, these things cannot be denied. But the experience is pretty flat, there is nothing really new brought to the table, and it will not stay with you after all is said and done. For popcorn entertainment, it wasn’t bad, but it isn’t something I will be rushing to rewatch.

Rapid Review: The Hot Chick (2002)

the hot chick poster

“You know what would be a shorter list? All the people that don’t hate Jessica.”
– Lulu

SYNOPSIS: Jessica Spencer, a somewhat mean spirited, popular and beautiful teenager, switches bodies with gas station robber Clive Maxtone one night and wakes up the next morning in his body. Freaked out, she must get her best friend April and two friends Lulu and Keecia to help her figure out what caused this. Along the her journey as a man, she discovers how mean she was and attempts to fix it while trying to get her boyfriend to believe its her. – via IMDB

I'd be pissed, too, if I woke up as Rob Schneider
I’d be pissed, too, if I woke up as Rob Schneider

GRADE 1Right-o, so I got roped into watching this the other night for a girls night once. This is totally not my cup of tea, but I figured I could go for something out of character and watch some ridiculous chick flicks. This was just way too out of character for me. I hate stupid humour, I do. I am certainly no fan of this. We can start with Rob Schneider. He truly irritates me beyond comprehension, plus I was submitted to watching a bunch of plastics instantaneously buy into this thing of an older dude housing a young girl, and all banding together (suddenly all grand friends) to help a girl who was most certainly a bitch to recover her body, or make do in life in this man’s. There were a few moments where things were tolerable, but overall, this is just so not my scene at all. I don’t know, I know I might be looking too closely at the plot (of which there is none) or at the acting (which was relatively dismal at the best of times) and all that, I know that it shouldn’t be taken too seriously, but this movie cannot even boast having a moral at the end of it all. I mean seriously?! Also, a big problem I had is that I do not enjoy stupid humour (as I have mentioned), and this was stuffed chock-full of it. This movie was pretty lame with a lot of ridiculous parts, humour that was just not on at the best of times, and Schneider as a lead? I knew it would be painful. Oh well, not something I will be going back to, and not something I can recommend, either. Skip it!

Review: Mean Girls (2004)

mean girls poster

“Raise your hand if you have ever been personally victimized by Regina George?”
– Mrs Norbury

SYNOPSIS: Raised in African bush country by her zoologist parents, Cady Heron thinks she knows about survival of the fittest. But the law of the jungle takes on a whole new meaning when the home-schooled 16-year-old enters public high school for the first time and encounters psychological warfare and unwritten social rules that teenage girls face today. – via IMDB

There were some real gems sprinkled throughout this movie.

The first major lesson that I learned from this.

mean girls beware the plastics

As someone who lives in South Africa, this is something that has happened before (sadly).

mean girls if you're from africa

Then there was irregardless…

irregardless mean girls

I totally understood Damian’s reaction here… though not for some stupid tiara… There are other things in life that incite this.

mean girls breaking the tiara

There were some real pearls of wisdom in Mean Girls.

mean girls evil quotemean girls stop calling each other sluts and whores

Karen was just… so special…

mean girls fifth sense

Damian provided me with quite a few good laughs.

mean girls hairmean girls she doesn't even go heremean girls oh no she did not

I don’t actually know what to say about this, but the logic here wasn’t flawed, it is something I have noticed…

mean girls halloween

Janis and Damian rocked that prom look, I loved this scene!

mean girls janis and damian prom

Kevin G was just… no…

mean girls kevin g

But he had his moments!

mean girls kevin g

How something really small can make someone so happy. I mean just look at Karen, who was so enthusiastic about Pink Wednesdays.

mean girls pink wednesdays

Getting pregnant is the fastest, most surefire way of dying… effective immediately.

mean girls pregnancy effects

People should be licensed to have kids…

mean girls worlds worst mum

GRADE 7.5Mean Girls is one of those films that hold up well, even after all these years. This ended up on the “to watch” list for a girl’s night because of Tom’s review a while ago. Well, imagine my surprise seeing a healthy and pretty Lindsay Lohan on the screen… a girl that actually wasn’t useless! Also, a younger, meaner Rachel McAdams was also entertaining, and Amanda Seyfried was excellent as the seriously daft blonde friend. There was a lot going on in this movie in terms of realising how nasty girls are and how insanely cruel kids can be, and the ordeal that high school can become. It’s movies like this that remind me why I am so glad we wore uniforms to school every day… I mean really. I didn’t have to deal with certain things, but other things stayed typically high school, doesn’t matter where you go. I liked the message behind this movie, comedy as it is presented and all, it strives to tell us other things. As something that comes across as a serious chick flick, there are things here that the guy’s will enjoy too, even if it is just the girls being ridiculous and running around in minimal amounts of clothing. The humour in  here was spot on, and it’s a pretty fun movie overall. The camera work was good, and I liked the way the plot progressed. I gotta say, Janis and Cady need to learn a thing or two about taking an organisation down from the inside – foot cream is so not the way to go about that! Damian was one super cool character who just stole every moment he was on screen, and provided me with many giggles. There is plenty that I am sure most people will identify with in here. I had a laugh at some of the dialogue, and there is plenty that is rather quotable. Mean Girls was entertaining, one of those movies you can go back and watch once in a while and not be wasting your time.