Den of Thieves (2018)

Den of Thieves
Director: Christian Gudegast
Writer: Christian Gudegast, Paul Scheuring
Cast: Gerard Butler, Pablo Schreiber, O’Shea Jackson Jr., 50 Cent, Meadow Williams, Maurice Compte, Brian Van Holt, Evan Jones, Mo McRae, Kaiwi Lyman, Dawn Olivieri, Eric Braeden
Seen on: 7.2.2018
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Plot:
Nick (Gerard Butler) has been after Merrimen (Pablo Schreiber) and his crew of bank robbers for a while. After they hit yet another bank, Nick manages to corner Donnie (O’Shea Jackson Jr.) who runs with Merrimen and learns that they plan to rob the Federal Reserve. But as Nick’s personal life spirals ever more out of control, it remains questionable whether he can gain the upper hand on Merrimen and his boys.

I hoped that Den of Thieves would fall into the category of f”ilms so bad that they’re good”. Unfortunately that hope didn’t come true at all. It was so serious and so boring, it practically sucked my higher brain functions straight out of my head.

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Southpaw (2015)

Southpaw
Director: Antoine Fuqua
Writer: Kurt Sutter
Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rachel McAdams, Forest Whitaker, Oona Laurence, 50 Cent, Skylan Brooks, Naomie Harris, Miguel Gomez
Seen on: 2.9.2015

Plot:
Billy Hope (Jake Gyllenhaal) comes from a poor background and out of the foster system, but he has literally fought his way into a good life: he’s a successful boxer, happily married to Maureen (Rachel McAdams) and has a charming daughter in Leila (Oona Laurence). But everything changes when Maureen is shot. Billy falls apart and with him, everything he has fought for: he is banned from fighting, his daughter is given into foster care, he can’t pay his taxes and loses his home. So he has to start from scratch, looking to trainer Tick (Forest Whitaker) for help to get back on his feet, and most importantly to get his daughter home.

Southpaw doesn’t really tell a revolutionary story, but it tells it well. The cast is unsurprisingly excellent and the race angle is surprisingly not awful, so that’s definitely something.

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Spy (2015)

Spy
Director: Paul Feig
Writer: Paul Feig
Cast: Melissa McCarthy, Jude Law, Miranda Hart, Rose ByrneAllison Janney, Morena Baccarin, Jason Statham, Bobby Cannavale, Will Yun LeeNargis Fakhri, Peter Serafinowicz, 50 Cent
Seen on: 8.6.2015

Plot:
Bradley Fine (Jude Law) is a superspy as you imagine him: good-looking, suave and mostly investigating within the upper class. But he wouldn’t be half the spy he was without Susan Cooper (Melissa McCarthy), his handler: Susan might not be in the field herself, but with the help of visual and audio equipment, she sees the world through Bradley’s eyes – with multiple enhancements. And she is the best at what she does. But when Bradley ignores her advice, is killed by Rayna Boyanov (Rose Byrne). And Rayna goes on to blow the cover of every active field agent. While uncovered spy Rick Ford (Jason Statham) goes rogue, Susan herself steps up – and out into the field.

Spy does many things right, but it does enough that didn’t work for me to keep me only very mildly enthusiastic about it – despite the good stuff.

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Escape Plan (2013)

Escape Plan
Director: Mikael Håfström
Writer: Miles Chapman, Jason Keller
Cast: Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jim Caviezel, Faran Tahir, Amy Ryan , Sam Neill, Vincent D’Onofrio, Vinnie Jones, 50 Cent

Plot:
Ray Breslin (Sylvester Stallone) works as a security consultant, basically: it’s his job to test prison security system by getting incarcerated and then breaking out. But his newest assignment doesn’t go as planned. He gets taken differently than agreed on, he finds himself facing the sadistic warden Hobbes (Jim Caviezel) instead of the person who knew about his real identity and the prison seems impossible to break out of. But at least he finds support for his breakout plans in fellow prisoner Emil Rottmayer (Arnold Schwarzenegger).

Escape Plan has all the markings of a craptastic film. And parts of it are as shitmazing as I expected them to be. But unfortunately I found myself pretty bored during most of the film despite that.

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Twelve (2010)

Twelve is Joel Schumacher‘s adaptation of Nick McDonell‘s novel [my review here], starring Chace Crawford, Rory Culkin, Emma Roberts, Emily Meade, Philip Ettinger, Curtis Jackson (aka 50 Cent), Ellen Barkin and Kiefer Sutherland.

Plot:
Ever since his mother’s death, White Mike (Chace Crawford) and his father have had troubles. Now Mike is getting by by selling drugs, though he does stay away from the novelty drug Twelve. He rather leaves that to Lionel (Curtis Jackson) who got Mike’s Cousin Charlie (Jeremy Allen White) hooked on it.
At the same time, popular girl Sara (Esti Ginzburg) plans a birthday party at Chris’ (Rory Culkin) place, even though his slightly psycho brother Claude (Billy Magnussen) is home for an impromptu visit.

Twelve is the rare breed of film where Joel Schumacher is not the worst thing about it. In fact, the script [by Jordan Melamed] is worse than his direction – and that is a feat he deserves at least some recognition for. But not by having to watch the movie.

[SPOILERS for book and film]

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