The Disaster Artist (2017)

The Disaster Artist
Director: James Franco
Writer: Scott Neustadter, Michael H. Weber
Based on: Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell‘s book of the same name
Cast: James Franco, Dave Franco, Seth Rogen, Ari Graynor, Alison Brie, Jacki Weaver, Paul Scheer, Zac Efron, Josh Hutcherson, June Diane Raphael, Megan Mullally, Jason Mantzoukas, Sharon Stone, Melanie Griffith, Hannibal Buress, Bob Odenkirk, Randall Park, Dree Hemingway, Zoey Deutch, Ike Barinholtz, Kevin Smith, Keegan-Michael Key, Adam Scott, Danny McBride, Kristen Bell, J.J. Abrams, Lizzy Caplan, Judd Apatow, Zach Braff, Bryan Cranston, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Greg Sestero, Tommy Wiseau
Seen on: 26.1.2017
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Plot:
Greg Sestero (Dave Franco) dreams of being an actor and making it big. In one of his acting classes, he meets Tommy Wiseau (James Franco). Tommy is a strange guy, but Greg is struck by his mysterious charisma and generall weirdness. They become unlikely friends. And since Tommy seems to have a lot of money, he can offer Greg a chance that he wouldn’t otherwise get: they should go to Hollywood together, stardom is sure to follow. But when it doesn’t, Tommy makes a new plan: he will make a film himself for them and then their film is going to make them famous.

The Disaster Artist is fun to watch, at least if you can take a huge James Franco ego project, because that’s what it is, too. Mostly it’s a good story that kept me glued to the screen.

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Alien: Covenant (2017)

Alien: Covenant
Director: Ridley Scott
Writer: John Logan, Dante Harper
Sequel to: Prometheus
Prequel to: the Alien movies
Cast: Michael Fassbender, Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup, Danny McBride, Demián Bichir, Carmen Ejogo, Jussie Smollett, Callie Hernandez, Amy Seimetz
Seen on: 23.5.2017
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Plot:
The Covenant is a spaceship that carries colonizers who hope to find a new habitable planet. But before they reach their chosen destination, there is a malfunction that requires Walter (Michael Fassbender), a robot in charge of the ship, to wake the crew from cryostasis. As they are dealing with the aftermath of the damage, a transmission reaches them, a call for help that brings them off their intended path and down to a planet that seems to offer perfect conditions for colonization. But as soon as they land, things start to become weird.

Alien Covenant failed to leave much of an impression with me. The first half was pretty good, but the second half turned pretty boring and was simply too clichéd to work.

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Rock the Kasbah (2015)

Rock the Kasbah
Director: Barry Levinson
Writer: Mitch Glazer
Cast: Bill Murray, Bruce Willis, Kate Hudson, Zooey Deschanel, Leem Lubany, Arian Moayed, Scott Caan, Danny McBride, Fahim Fazli
Seen on: 5.4.2016

Plot:
Richie Lanz (Bill Murray) is a tour manager who has seen his heyday. Now he only has a handful of unknown acts, the most promising of which is probably Ronnie (Zooey Deschanel). When Richie hears about the tours for soldiers stationed in Afghanistan and what people get paid for those tours, he’s determined to get Ronnie there, despite whatever protests she might utter. She can be convinced but once they land in Kabul, she loses her nerve and takes off with the help of mercenary Bombay Brian (Bruce Willis). As luck will have it, though, Richie stumbles upon fresh new talent in the form of Salima (Leem Lubany). He is determined to get her to the TV show Afghan Star. Only problem is: Pashtun women are not allowed to sing and perform in Afghanistan.

Well. Rock the Kasbah is certainly a film. But it’s a film without direction or much thought or much to recommend it, really.

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This Is the End (2013)

This Is the End
Director: Evan Goldberg, Seth Rogen
Writer: Evan Goldberg, Seth Rogen
Based on: the short film “Jay and Seth vs. The Apocalypse
Cast: Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, James Franco, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson, Danny McBride, Michael Cera, Emma Watson, Mindy Kaling, David Krumholtz, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Rihanna, Martin Starr, Paul Rudd, Channing Tatum, Kevin Hart, Aziz Ansari, Jason Segel, Brandon Trost, Jason Trost

Plot:
Jay Baruchel comes to LA to visit Seth Rogen. He had planned to have a weekend full of movies, video games and weed at Seth’s place, but Seth gets him to go to James Franco’s housewarming party. While they’re there, the apocalypse happens – literally. None of them ascends into heaven, but at least Jay, Seth, James, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson and Danny McBride also don’t fall into the hell pit that opened just outside the door. But what should they do now?

I was afraid that I wouldn’t like This Is the End and I was right. Apart from a few moments of actual fun, there was nothing that I could enjoy about it.

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Re-Watch: Despicable Me (2010)

Despicable Me
Director: Pierre Coffin, Chris Renaud
Writer: Cinco Paul, Ken Daurio
Cast: Steve Carell, Jason Segel, Russell Brand, Julie Andrews, Will Arnett, Kristen Wiig, Jemaine Clement, Jack McBrayer, Danny McBride, Mindy Kaling, Ken Jeong
[Here’s my first review.]

Plot:
Gru (Steve Carell) is a super-villain whose best days are past. When he hatches a plan to steal the moon with the help of a shrink ray, all that’s missing is the necessary cash for the operation. So he goes down to the Bank of Evil – and is denied credit. When Gru tries to follow through with his plan on his own, he is bested by Vector (Jason Segel), the nerdy new kid on the supervillain block. Since Gru is unable to recover the shrink ray, he makes a new plan: Vector has a weakness: cookies. So Gru adopts three little girls and sends them to his house to sell him some. But what Gru didn’t expect was that he’d start to like the little girls.

When I saw Despicable Me for the first time, I wasn’t very excited about it. Now that I re-watched it, I’m still not. Yes, it’s sweet and the minions are awesome, but it just feels so run of the mill that it doesn’t really get anywhere.despicable_me Continue reading

Your Highness (2011)

Your Highness
Director: David Gordon Green
Writer: Danny McBride, Ben Best
Cast: Danny McBride, James Franco, Rasmus Hardiker, Natalie Portman, Toby Jones, Justin Theroux, Zooey Deschanel

Plot:
The princes Fabious (James Franco) and Thadeous (Danny McBride) couldn’t be more diffirent. While Fabious goes on quest after quest (and always returns successful), Thadeous tries to live life as responsibility-free as he can. From his latest quest, Fabious brought back Belladonna (Zooey Deschanel) who has spent her life in captivity, held by the evil Leezar (Justin Theroux) who plans to use her for a ritual. Fabious and Belladonna want to get married but before they can, Leezar steals her back. So Fabious goes on yet another quest – only this time he drags Thadeous along.

This movie was so extremely bad, I don’t even have words for it. The first time I thought about turning off the film was about 30 minutes in. But then Natalie Portman hadn’t shown up yet and I kinda kept assuming that this movie had to become funny at one point or another. It never did. Instead it continued to be absolutely dreadful.

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Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011)

Kung Fu Panda 2 is the first feature film by Jennifer Yuh, written by Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger and starring the voices of Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Jackie Chan, Dustin Hoffman, Gary Oldman, Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu, David Cross, Michelle Yeoh, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Victor Garber, Danny McBride and James Hong. [Here’s my review of the first one.]

Plot:
Po (Jack Black), head of the Furious Five – Tigress (Angelina Jolie), Mantis (Seth Rogen), Viper (Lucy Liu), Monkey (Jackie Chan), Crane (David Cross) – is pretty content with his life. That is, until the kingdom is threatened by the evil Lord Shen (Gary Oldman) who developed a new weapon that is able to defeat Kung Fu and with which he plans to take over. But a soothsayer (Michelle Yeoh) has predicted his defeat – and his fate and Po’s seem to be more closely tied together than both realise at first.

Kung Fu Panda 2 is a very sweet film and an excellent sequel.The cast is good, the story is nice, but it’s the animation that really stands out: it’s that fantastic.

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Due Date (2010)

Due Date is the newest film by Todd Phillips, starring Robert Downey Jr., Zach Galifianakis, Michelle Monaghan, Jamie Foxx, Juliette Lewis, Danny McBride and RZA.

Plot:
Peter (Robert Downey Jr.) is on his way home from a business trip to witness the birth of his son, scheduled for the end of the week. Unfortunately, at the airport he meets the obnoxious Ethan (Zach Galifianakis), who immediately gets him into all kinds of troubles and finally booted off the plane and on the No-Fly-List. Unfortunately, Peter’s luggage, including his wallet and ID stay on plane. And so he finds himself on a cross-country-trip with Ethan (who at least had the decency to get kicked off the plane as well).

I should have known. After The Hangover I just should have known better than to go ahead and watch this movie, let alone pay good money for it. But then along comes Robert Downey Jr. and has to be in the film. And I let myself be swayed. Boy, do I ever regret it.

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