Beating the Blizzard

Another day, another blizzard. Sigh. Unfortunately, unlike last year I don't have an ├╝ber warm trip planned to New Zealand and/or Tahiti to look forward to, as well as to break up this snow monotony (oh man I STILL need to do a blog on that....) My friend Amelia posted a great blog HERE with suggestions to keep your cool during winter madness. I liked the idea so much I came up with my own cinematically alternative list of films (and a couple of tv series) that just might sustain you through this dreadful weather.


Arrested Development - Who wants to go out at a time like this? Plop yourself on the couch and rewatch (or heaven forbid discover) the majesties of this hilarious television show in marathon fashion. And what better way to prepare for the long awaited return in May by revisiting the series now. I've been doing that same thing and I must say it never gets old. There is a new joke to be found every time you watch it and laughter is the best thing to get you out of winter gloom (seriously, it's done wonders for me.) Plus being set in California, the closest thing to snow you'll find here is a frozen banana...and that is A okay with me.

King Kong (2005) - Unfortunately this one does have snow when they end up in a snowy New York City towards  the end of the film. Thankfully though the first two hours or so (well...who is counting...) are instead set on a nice, presumably sunny and warm, albeit dangerous island. This film presents a great opportunity for a viewer to become one with nature and witness some very unique wildlife. If you really love monkeys I suggest you go with this title....or there's always Planet of the Apes.. I put it in this category because sitting through it sometimes feels like watching a whole t.v. series, but it could easily fit into the next category as well...


Jurassic Park - Okay, basically you get the exact same thing out of this one as you do in King Kong. But what do I know? Maybe you're more of a strictly dinosaur person than a monkeys and dinosaur person. Plus at Jurassic Park you've got better amenities (minus when the power goes out.) You don't have to tough it out as much as you do at Skull island (read: you don't have to sleep next to a monkey....instead you get a tree with "veggiesauruses" surrounding you.) The scenery is great and you can admire it from the comfort of a car....well until the power goes out, but even then you could have stayed in the car.

Jaws - Okay, I didn't really intend for this to be a full on monster movie post, so this will be my last one. I actually put this one on the list more because out of all of these "vacations" this one is without a doubt some place warm. The weather here is fabulous. Have you ever seen it rain in this movie? The skies are sunny and bright. Sure the water is infested with a murderous shark who happens to be very intelligent...so instead of swimming you can just work on your tan at the beach.

Castaway/Lost/Gilligan's Island - So maybe a Martha's vineyard type place isn't really your scene and you'd prefer to go somewhere more tropical, less crowded and without dinosaurs or giant apes. If you want alone time, go with Cast Away. If you want company, have got tons of time and want to be confused a lot (while also getting your fair share of Star Wars references...) go with Lost. If you want something less contemporary and you want something a little more mind numbing, Gilligan's Island is your best bet. If you pay close enough attention, you might even learn some valuable survival skills from all three (including but not limited to: making a radio out of a coconut)


North - So I know a lot of people REALLY hate this movie....I mean REALLY hate it. But...it's always been a childhood favorite for me for the idea alone that a kid gets to see anywhere in the world he desires to see. From Hawaii, Paris, New York City, Alaska, Africa, and China...the world is North's suitcase. Yes it's a suitcase full of racist stereotypes....but it's best not to take anything in life too seriously. Besides, why not enjoy this free world tour....AND this weird alternate reality that shows what would happen if Elaine and George from Seinfeld ever got together and had Elijah Wood as a child... But if kids movies aren't your thing, you can go for the adult version of having the ability to go anywhere with Up In the Air

Star Wars Saga - Why limit the vacation options to earth? There are endlessly cool places to visit in the GFFA (that's nerd speak for the galaxy far, far away.) If you want unbearably hot, there are volcano planets or desert planets to serve your needs. If you need some place with more moisture, there's planets made of water, swamps or just a cool island-y planet full of Wookiees. Forests, jungles, or just Italian like paradises....there's a planet for that. Or if for some reason you're a masochist, and to escape winter you want to watch scenes of torturous cold.........well the Empire Strikes Back is the one for you. Basically any type of place you want to go you can find here. Unless you want a place with hobbit holes...see Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Back to the Future - If you don't want to limit your vacation options to merely space, let's go for a destination anywhere in time. Unfortunately though your only options are 2 years from now, 1985, 1955 and 1985. Oh and you only get to stay in the same city too. But hey, your company is so delightful that it doesn't matter much at all....and hey you might even bump into your parents and threaten your entire existence! That sounds like a memorable trip if ever I've heard one! But if you want more time options, and still hilarious company (albeit far less intelligent..) you could always go for Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure.


Better off Dead - Okay, let's face it. This snow isn't going anywhere. So I guess it's time to think of things you can do with it....Well we know what Charles de Mar suggests doing with it, but I wouldn't recommend that. Personally, eating snow ice cream is a much better way to get snow in your system. I say take the Lane Meyer approach (aside from trying to kill yourself a few times...) and use the snow to your advantage: the K12. Unfortunately though skiing isn't really my thing....so the next entry has even MORE suggestions besides just skiing and snorting snow.

Groundhog Day - Learn how to make the most of a horrible snow day with a man who has spent presumably years in the same horrible snow day over and over and OVER. (Coincidentally that day is coming up on Saturday FYI...) Become an ice sculpture artist, master the piano, learn a new language, become a pro at throwing cards into hats (not really my first choice but hey...) perform acts of service and try every type of food imaginable. If there's any movie to help you beat the blizzard it's this one. Besides helping inspire you for things you could be doing, it also serves as a fantastic example of "it could be worse." Sure winter FEELS like Groundhog Day. lasting an eternity....but at least we know it WILL end and we won't have to spend as long in the snow as Phil Connors.

Well that's it for now. Hopefully some of my suggestions will help distract from this utterly drab weather, (can you tell that I may or may not have seasonal depression disorder?) and before we know it summer will return to us once more! Let me know what you think of my list and if there's any I missed in the comments below!


Sundance Selections

Well it's over. The only thing that makes winter tolerable; (beside Christmas of course...) the Sundance Film Festival has come to an end. Every darn year it sneaks up on me before I have time to get advanced tickets, and almost always I miss out because of it (last year is the exception since there weren't as many movies I wanted to see as this year...and including the JGL hit record event I got to do everything I wanted to do.) Even though I pretty much say it every year, next year I REALLY am going to try to be more prepared haha. The overall experience was fun as usual. And once again I never saw one celebrity (since I'm not able to use the urinals I guess..). Oh unless you count THIS GUY who I saw walking along Main Street likely promoting a film called Newlyweeds. So while I posted reviews on the films I was able to see, here's a list of just a few that I missed that I hope to catch if/when they make their way to theaters.

A.C.O.D. - What does A.C.O.D. stand for? Adult Children of Divorce of course! (hey that rhymed..) Being someone who is a semi-expert on the subject I was instantly intrigued. Then add the fact that a pretty solid cast was involved including Adam Scott, Amy Poehler, Richard Jenkins Catherine O'Hara and Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and this film instantly went on my must see list. I'm not sure if this one has a distribution deal yet, but I would definitely love to see it.

Austenland - I'm really disappointed the stars never aligned so I could see this one. Unfortunately, due to some bad coordinating, as well as some really rabid Jane Austen fans in Salt Lake that arrived for wait list way earlier than the rules state (but somehow no one seemed to care...) it was not meant to be. Fortunately, this one was picked up by Sony Classics and is said to be looking for a summer release. I'm very excited. I love Keri Russell, I love Jane Austen and I love the premise of a Jane Austen role playing theme park, but.........I do have trouble taking Bret McKenzie seriously as a romantic lead. I just can't help but picturing him in an office with Jemaine and Murray during another "band meeting." Also I'm interested in seeing Jerusha Hess' directing debut. I have mixed feelings so far on her and her husband's work...but I'd like for her to be a success.

Breathe In - Director Drake Doremus and leading lady Felicity Jones reteam for their second effort after their last collaboration Like Crazy. I recently watched that film again and enjoyed it much better after my colossal expectations were finally held in check. This time the cast seems a bit more rounded out with Guy Pierce and Amy Ryan. Here Felicity Jones plays a foreign exchange student who changes the life of the family she stays with. Simple enough plot that could go either way in the wrong hands, but the reviews all suggest this film was even better than Like Crazy. I haven't heard anything yet about any company picking it up though.

Hell Baby - The horror comedy truly is one of my favorite genres out there. From what I have gathered, this film seems to take on a Cabin in the Woods approach at both satirizing and paying tribute to the genre. Apparently both Rosemary's baby , haunted houses and more are covered in this film. Oh and did I mention it has Rob Corddry and Thomas Lennon in it? Sure to be hilarious. Again though, not sure if anyone picked it up, so hopefully we can all see it one day. I'd love to put it on my Halloween view list.

In a World... - I must say, I love the premise of this film. One of my favorite aspects of The Holiday (besides Jude Law's hotness of course..) is Cameron Diaz's awesome job as a movie trailer editor. So what better idea to make a whole movie devoted to the art of movie trailer NARRATING? With that premise in mind you have to admit that the title of the film is pretty much ingenious. The reviews of this film both by critics and general festival goers have all been very positive saying it doubles as a light and fun romantic comedy, as well as a female empowerment tale. I really hope I'll be seeing this one.

The Spectacular Now - This might be the film I'm most disappointed to have missed (and believe me I sure tried to get in.) The film is based off a novel by Tim Tharp, but adapted by the writers of a film you may or may not be sick of me mentioning on this blog...(500) Days of Summer. That fact alone is really all I needed, but the reviews I read all pretty much gushed about this film and especially the performances of its young leads: Miles Teller (of Rabbit Hole) and Shailene Woodley (of The Descendants).  Thankfully though, some brand new company I've never heard of picked it up called A24 picked it up and plans to distribute it this summer.

The two films I DID see got picked up for distribution as well. Sony Pictures acquired Before Midnight and Fox Searchlight paid a hefty (and hopefully worthwhile,) price for The Way, Way Back. Fox and The Way, Way Back are a perfect match though, so I'm very excited about that....hopefully it will be out in summer since it's a perfect summer film and everyone can enjoy it as much as I did. But anyway, that's about it! I am very much looking forward to the fest next year, and hopefully I can remember for once in my life to sign up for an advanced time slot so that I can have much more goodies to post than just two reviews and a wrap up. But until then...so long Sundance, we'll see you next year!


Sundance Review: The Way, Way Back

Time for another Sundance film review! Hopefully this isn't the last one of the fest...but this is the last one I had guaranteed tickets for since the festival always sneaks up on me. However, I am hoping to get into a few other films via standby in the next couple of days...so we will see if I have any luck with that. But if I don't end up seeing Austenland, In A World..., A.C.O.D. or The Spectacular Now, I will at least have ended on a high with The Way, Way Back.

First off. Can I just say how much I utterly love Jim Rash? Not only does this guy just crack me up with everything he does, but more and more with each project he proves just how talented he is. Okay I'm sure his writing partner and co-director Nat Faxon is just as talented... but he doesn't happen to portray Dean Pelton from Community...nor did he have the hilarious uncontrollable urge to mock Angelina Jolie at last year's academy awards that made me love him even more. So what can I say? I'm biased. But he and Faxon, as with their first screenplay The Descendants, made me laugh throughout the whole movie with ease because of their witty and memorable script...but unlike The Descendants, in this film both men turned in supporting roles as well that also helped the film's cause. Seriously...Jim Rash was a hoot, even just for his physical appearance alone. Jim Rash appreciation rant over.

I absolutely loved The Descendants, which is why I really wanted to see this one as well. I definitely could see a lot of similarities between the two films, but ultimately The Way, Way Back isn't as weighty...it feels more breezy and less ponderous. Not that that's a bad thing. I'd say it's more of a feel good film than a thinker film....BUT it made me feel REALLY good. But I mean, truth be told, I do think it's a bit of both...and I think much of that is due to the fabulous cast and the small nuances they brought to their performances. It's refreshing to see Steve Carrell play someone other than Michael Scott or the variation of Dan in Real Life we've been seeing too much lately (ie Crazy Stupid Love and Seeking A Friend For the End of the World,)... even if he does play a huge jerk. Carell does a great job here playing against his norm, as does Toni Collette, who too is playing a role more unlikeable than usual (yet somehow she still remains amiable enough to feel sorry for.) But the film definitely wouldn't work without the talents of its young star Liam James and Sam Rockwell. The rapport between the two is what keeps the film interesting and fresh. Rockwell in particular really leaves a lasting impression. He was humorous, but he had a lot of heart that really defined the film.

This summer coming-of-age story isn't particularly new or groundbreaking, but it is well made by everyone involved... and sometimes that is all it takes. I have to say it is probably one of my favorite indies to come along in awhile. Also did I mention it is hilarious? The whole theater clearly felt the same way because the laughter was almost non stop throughout. I loved this movie. It made me long for summer, where I hope that in addition to fabulous weather, this film can get a wide release and be seen by as many people as possible. EMILY RATING: 9


Sundance Review: Before Midnight

When I heard that a sequel was being made to Before Sunrise and Before Sunset, I was absolutely thrilled. Then when I heard it would be premiering at Sundance, I decided I would do everything in my power to see the third installment. Like any other cinema lover invested in this great love story, I couldn't wait to find out what happened after the events of Before Sunset. So many questions left unanswered, so much potential, and most importantly: characters that I longed to see again. As always though with this story, what I got wasn't really what I was expecting at all. Well....actually I kind of expected it since a few too many reviews I read shared too many details. I'll try to refrain from getting into specifics, but this film can't really be reviewed without saying that their relationship has drastically changed from the last two films as a consequence of the choices made in the previous two and the years in between.

Before Midnight shares many similarities to its two predecessors, but definitely feels the most different of the three. This is largely due to where the characters are at now in their lives and what has transpired between them. No longer are their conversations as endlessly fascinating as they were in Sunrise and even Sunset, often times they can be mundane (or worse; bickering and explosive.) Their encounter this time isn't romanticized like previous two, this time it's lived in and very strained. The characters have become more real with each outing as we see how life has hardened them. It really is an amazing feat for a filmmaker to be able to successfully revisit these characters, but it isn't always the easiest to watch how they've changed...especially when Celine is always itching for a fight.

I love how Before Sunset didn't necessarily try to duplicate the plot of Before Sunrise. It was more of an examination of how that night in the original, had affected these characters. In Before Midnight too the formula may be the same (of the one on one walk and talk,) but the themes and general tone are so much different. This time, again we explore the consequences of a choice, but like Jesse warned in both previous installments, if things in their relationship ever changed from what they were in the past, their relationship might not be so idealized as they once thought. This almost seems to be the entire theme of Before Midnight, as this fear of young Jesse seems to have come to fruition. The real question becomes how do you still try to sustain a relationship like that and still try to make it work?

Like its predecessors, Before Midnight offered plenty of food for thought. However, it didn't feel as effortless as the others in sucking me in right from the start. To be honest, I kind of had a hard time getting into it when other people besides Celine or Jesse were chipping into the conversations (luckily the whole movie was like this, but a good portion was.) To me these films have always been about a conversation between just two people, so I didn't have much interest in what anyone else had to say. The real magic happens when these two are just with each other, and even though both of their personalities have changed quite a bit (okay Celine far more than Jesse) they've still got it...and you can't help but root or these two to be together. There were definitely some things I could have done without, as this was the most adult and grittiest film in the series....but it was also thankfully the funniest. It was a treat to see these characters again, and while it may not be my favorite in the series (probaby because I personally relate less to what they are going through this time around since I haven't reached that stage in my life...) I'd be glad to spend time with Jesse and Celine any day. EMILY RATING: 8.5/10


Recently Rented

Today marks the beginning of Sundance! Hooray! I have tickets to a few films, and hope to get into a few more! (So you can expect posts on that in the coming week...) But if the cold is too much for you to want to leave the house even for Sundance, I understand! In case you hadn't noticed, the dog days of winter have already begun and are only gonna get worse from here on out. If this actually is news to you, whoever you are reading this....you either must be hibernating in a cave somewhere waiting for winter to be over (let me join you,) or you're living in a place that is summer year round (REALLY let me join you.) However, here both the weather and temperature has been absolutely miserable as of late, so staying in doors and watching a rental seems to be my favorite thing to do lately (but let's be honest...I'm never really against that...) So here are a few that I thought were worth reviewing. Enjoy.

DAMSELS IN DISTRESS - I saw some posters and a preview for this one awhile back but had forgotten about it. When I was looking up films released in 2012 for my worst and unwatchables list I suddenly and inexplicably felt the urge to watch it. This film was very different. It was quirkiness in the vein of Wes Anderson or Woody Allen and it definitely took me awhile to get used to the deadpan delivery of the main character Violet. All too soon though her wisdom and viewpoints won me over and I found myself in her corner, rooting for her. I really liked the film...I found it to be charming, but for a very specific taste if you are willing to be patient with its quirks and how often it meanders. I will admit though, I was a bit dissatisfied with the ending. I felt like the writer didn't really know how to end it...but I still enjoyed it for what it was! EMILY RATING : 7.5/10

THE FIVE-YEAR ENGAGEMENT - This is a very funny, albeit flawed film. It definitely isn't perfect, but to me it is far better than most rom coms out there. The film suffers from one major problem, which is the pacing. We know from the title what to expect, but surprisingly the time periods are very muddled together which makes it hard to keep track of how far along we are in the story and what is left to happen. Plus the movie is about a half an hour too long, which is truly unfortunate because that's when the characters start becoming unlikeable. I feel like the actors were likable enough to overcome that, but some major rewriting could have helped in the middle. But I was definitely laughing throughout (despite the very crude moments that are better left on the cutting room floor. If you get around to watching this one, catch it on tv) EMILY RATING 7.5/10

HOPE SPRINGS - Well this definitely isn't a movie you can watch with just anyone haha! It's basically a feature length film completely dedicated to the sexual intimacy problems of a (just past) middle-aged couple. If that sounds right up your alley then go for it haha! I personally did enjoy it mainly due to the terrific cast. Meryl Streep as always is incredible and Tommy Lee Jones was very good as well. Plus I was surprised they also had some pretty good chemistry when the script called for it. Definitely not really a film to recommend to everyone and their dog because the content is very adult. EMILY RATING: 7/10

LOOPER - This film was totally not what I was expecting it to be at all....not in a bad way, just in a very...well unexpected way! JGL was great and all (no I'm not about to go all fangirl here,) as was Willis and Blunt....but the film's real strength lied in the story. The previews have you fooled thinking this is a straight action film, but it's so much more than that. Yes there are plot holes galore as with any time travel movie, but the ending was fantastic and I was definitely thinking about it for quite some time afterward. EMILY RATING: 8.3/10

RUBY SPARKS - This is probably my favorite of the bunch. I just LOVE a good relationship film, and this one was fascinating. Plus I love any stories about something fictional entering the real world. But there was far more to this film than a gimmick or a celebration of whimsy, there was some real truth about the nature of relationships and the balance there must needs be. I loved the beginning because I fell in love with the idea and loved how it played on the screen, but the latter half of the film is what kept me thinking, analyzing and debating. EMILY RATING 9/10

SEEKING A FRIEND FOR THE END OF THE WORLD - Wouldn't you know it, I actually watched this film on the so called end of the world: December 21, 2012. I actually thought it was a very realistic depiction on what it might be like if the world was faced with something like that and how people would react. I really liked both of the characters but my problem was even though I think the performances of the leads were both great [SPOILER] I didn't really see Keira Knightley and Steve Carell as a couple at all....[/SPOILER] EMILY RATING 7/10

SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED - I watched this one the least recently, so I don't have as many fresh thoughts as I previously did. While I enjoyed it, I think I had too high of expectations for it. The film was very understated and did make some interesting metaphors to ponder about love. It's definitely a film to watch for characters and not for plot, and I guess I was expecting it to be more balanced between the two. Plus, though I really do like Aubrey Plaza, I'm not really sure how much range she's got. While she played her role well, she pretty much plays the pissed off girl with issues in every role she's in and I'd like to see her act a bit more lighthearted for once. She had moments in this, but it's still just kind of variations from what she's done. But I still appreciate her performance and the film itself . EMILY RATING 7/10

SLEEPWALK WITH ME - I watched this film on a suggestion from a columnist who said it was worth streaming. Well, he might have been right if I had had any sort of respect or sympathy for the film's main character. The film depicts a semi-autographical story of an aspiring comic who also happens to be an immature man-child who can't commit (marriage) to his girlfriend of 8 years. Boohoo you got a girl out of your league who also happens to be incredibly perfect in every way, but I'm not READY for marriage. Oh yeah and he also has problems sleepwalking  #firstworldproblems Grow up dude who is already in his mid 30's... I can respect films about complicated relationships (hello 500 days of summer is my favorite movie!) but when a character is just a selfish jerk and treats the character you are actually rooting for (IE Something Awful...I mean Something Borrowed) it just lends for an unpleasant viewing experience haha. For me anyway! But hey the majority of critics disagree with me so, maybe you will too. EMILY RATING 6.5/10

Well that's it for now, but with the season the way it is you can bet I'll have more rentals to review in no time.... but in the meantime you can find me at Sundance :)


The Top Ten Worst of 2012

Well now that I've told you what the worst movies last year were that I wouldn't see, now it's time to count down the ones that I DID actually suffer through, be it through rental, theater or dollar theater viewing. These might not be THE absolute worst the year had to offer....I mean after all THIS MOVIE exists...[I don't know that I've EVER seen a movie rated that low! haha truthfully, that probably should have topped the unwatchables list]. But ANYWAY, though there are undoubtedly worse, these ten are the worst that I personally saw last year.

10. Darling Companion - On IMDb the plot is listed simply as "The story of a woman who loves her dog more than her husband. And then her husband loses the dog." The premise intrigued me so much in a "this has gotta be awful" kind of way that I just had to see it. The film intrigued me even more because it was written and directed by Lawrence Kasdan, the scribe of Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Empire Strikes Back. On top of that it had a fantastic cast including Diane Keaton, Kevin Klein. Dianne Wiest and Richard Jenkins! How did so many talented people get in on this?!?! Their efforts definitely make the film more watchable than it really should be. I'm not saying the family drama wasn't interesting, but it is let down by a far too flimsy and ridiculous plot. And when they start following the orders of a dog psychic the film really lost me!

9. Dark Shadows - Original review found HERE. It absolutely pains me to put this on this list. I love Tim Burton dearly, and I very much wanted to adore this film....but it's a mess. Everyone in the film is better than this, which is why I feel like it was such a let down. Yes it had a few elements that made it stand out from other films; as with any other Burton film, it was definitely visually interesting...Problem here is that the sum wasn't more than its parts.

8. House at the End of the Street - Okay, I'll admit this movie is actually pretty entertaining in a kind of ridiculously fun way. The film is trying so hard to be like [SPOILER] the unwanted sibling of Psycho it's ridiculous... You know a movie has struck comedy gold when a character finds a box of tampons in the trash and it's meant to be a sinister moment. [/SPOILER] But, I must say I did jump a few times and the cast was actually trying here, unlike the other horror film on the list....

7. Playing for Keeps - truth be told this movie wasn't nearly as bad as I was hoping or expecting. It's not like it was an obnoxious film...just pretty bland/mediocre/uninspired....whatever you want to say. Plus you know, I always think it's classy when the main male protagonist sleeps with nearly every female in sight, and somehow is still a catch. To sum it up, the film is just silly. Sure you could probably do worse in the rom-com arena, but you can absolutely do better.

6. The Vow -  Original review found HERE. Even if this is based off of a true story, the Hollywood version of this plot is down right ridiculous. Sorry Rachel McAdams, you have no ones sympathy. You pretty much struck the best deal in the world (and this is coming from a non-Tatum fan) and live to complain about it. I find it hard to believe that any girl wouldn't be a little psyched at waking up in her situation. Yeah it would be a huge change but when you have Mr. Devoted with you it couldn't be all that bad. I do get that the film is trying to say that our life experiences make us who we are, but it says it in a very inelegant and predictable way (unlike say Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.) Plus the ending kinda sucked.

5. The Cold Light of Day - Henry Cavill is a beautiful beautiful man. In fact, he may be one of the most attractive men on the planet. But other than watching his face for an hour and a half, accompanied with the beautiful imagery of Spain, this film is a colossal waste of time....and I NEVER say that. This film was so unbelievably stupid. And while attractive, his character was essentially a bumbling idiot. How he survives the film, I will never know because his character has absolutely no instincts and on top of it is a horrible shot...but that doesn't stop some CIA member from giving him an invitation to join the agency in the end. Again this is puzzling since he wasn't even the one who saved the day! The film is full of implausibilities and is basically the epitome of generic for this genre. I don't even care about putting spoiler tags on this one, because honestly if you haven't seen it, please don't.

4. The Lucky One - Original review found HERE Nicholas Sparks you've done it again! [SPOILER] death by treehouse must have been one of your finest plot twists yet. I can just imagine how proud he must have been writing that! [/SPOILER] This film is awful and relies on nothing but Zac Efron's charm (which he admittedly has) and cliche after cliche (the real problem...among other things.) Sparks, you have nothing new or interesting to say. Please leave Hollywood. And has anyone noticed that Safe Haven looks like the exact same movie??

3. One For the Money - This movie was absolutely horrible. You know it's a bad thing when the most memorable part about the movie is Katherine Heigl's phony New Jersey accent (it reminded me of the flight of the conchords episode with the actor in the clip below. Big Eddie = Katherine Heigl) The plot is stupid, she has wasted chemistry with her co-stars.....the whole thing pretty much amounts to nothing. I remember watching Killers afterwards and thinking it seemed like a masterpiece in comparison....never a good thing.

2. The Apparition - This movie is horrific, and not in the way it was intending. Stupid, boring, insipid, lifeless, uninspired, cliche, routine....doesn't even BEGIN to describe it. The characters are so dull that no one cares of they live or die, Malfoy included. The film basically goes like this: plot contrivance, plot contrivance, formulaic scare, plot contrivance, formulaic scare SPOILER: everyone dies.[/SPOILER] THE END....without ever explaining a single dang thing. Why introduce all these plot threads and ideas and never explain their purpose? This film looks like a victim of very bad editing....but even so, there isn't a good movie to be found anywhere within this footage. Still...it might have gone a long way. Oh and as for the picture, I guess you should ALWAYS search the house in lingerie whenever you hear something scary. Might as well look sexy if you're gonna be attacked right? At least it wasn't very revealing haha.

And the #1 spot goes to.......

1. Battleship - Original review found HERE Oh what a painful viewing experience this was. Haha it was probably worse for other people named Ben, who had to sit through me and Courtney (and occasionally Amelia when she wasn't asleep..) complaining the whole way through...but really this film was absolutely awful. No personality or depth to a single character. The "action" sequences were headache inducing and the plot was just ridiculous. No question that this was the absolute worst film I saw last year. I think I pretty much died 10 minutes in....in fact, a little part of me died with that film...and I'm not sure I will ever get it back.

Well that's all folks! Do you agree? Which ones did you see that were the worst.


The Top Ten Unwatchables of 2012

I had so much fun with my list from last year that I decided this has to become a yearly tradition! Since I'm nowhere near ready to give you a yearly best list, and not quiiiiiiite near ready to give you the yearly worst list (but hopefully that's later this week...), THESE movies I don't have to see to know they make the list....since the point of the list is me refusing to see them :) With that in mind, we'll go ahead and post the films from 2012 I would never go out of my way to watch....be it theater, dollar theater, redbox, netflix instant or even on tv. These movies I will avoid like the plague until my dying day. We'll start with #10!

10. John Carter - Okay truth be told, I actually WOULD watch this movie.....in a Wickerman way. The only problem is that no one will watch it with me! Okay actually this isn't true, my dad really wanted me to watch this awhile back and I just couldn't bring myself to. I'm not sure why I feel such a repulsion and yet fascination with it. I think the fact that it was probably one of the hugest flops of last year and that critics weren't too keen on it miiiiight have something to do with it. Then there's also the fact that after seeing it, my friends couldn't stop talking about how awful it really was. All of these factors contributing, something tells me I won't ever watch this one.

9. Big Miracle - Free Willy in Alaska, with Drew Barrymore? No thank you! And please don't tell me her love interest is John Krasinski....I don't know if I could buy that in any universe. Even with the inclusion of Krasinski I don't think I could go anywhere near this film. This movie looked like the epitome of borrrrrrrrrrrring. To be honest, I'm really not quite sure who this movie appealed to. I guess I'm heartless, but this really isn't the type of material I associate with compelling or meaningful filmmaking. But hey, whatever floats your boat.....just don't expect me to get on that boat.

8. Joyful Noise - This is another movie that I literally cannot fathom who would actually want to watch this. Who would willingly choose to spend their time watching a musical feud between Dolly Parton and Queen Latifah. Seriously. Who....and why?

7. A Thousand Words - It pretty much seems like a given nowadays that if you walk into an Eddie Murphy movie, disaster will be sure to follow. These family comedies he seems to be making nowadays are just awful. It's a shame it's come to this, but I basically now associate his name now with painfully unwatchable, stupid films.Speaking of actors who I associate terrible movies with, that brings me to the next two on the list...

6. Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance - I'll admit I never saw the first Ghost Rider, for the same reason I'm putting this one on this list: the ridiculousness of Nicolas Cage. But the fact that this has a 4.4 Rating on IMDb and a 17% Rotten Tomatoes score doesn't hurt either in labeling this as "unwatchable"  It/s hard enough seeing this goof ball in any action films anymore, let alone "superhero" ones.

5. Stolen - Taken 2 was close to making my list. But why include that when you've got Taken 2 AND Nicolas Cage combined?? All I needed to see was the poster for a good laugh at this film. [And the picture to the left....that is a REAL still...] It's like they weren't even trying to hide the plagiarism. "Oh let's do the plot of Taken, but let's have Nicolas Cage do it... he's up for anything. But what should we call it?" *Grabs a thesaurus and looks for a synonym of the word taken...* "I got it!!! Stolen!" I seriously think this was the thought process of some of the people involved in this film...

4. The Three Stooges - Okay you know it's a problem when Sean Hayes is your most marketable person in a film. Haha actually this film did have some bigger stars in the supporting cast including Sofia Vergara, Jennifer Hudson, Jane Lynch and....Kirby Heyborne? Wait what? The trailers all looked horrible and completely devoid of laughs. Some things were purely a product of their time and cannot be made modern. I feel like this is one of those cases. true I haven't actually seen it myself, but once again the critics and people of imdb have my back again.

3. That's My Boy - How does Adam Sandler follow up something like Jack & Jill? He makes a comedy inspired by the story of Mary Kay Letourneau....starring as a now adult man who, as a teen, fathered a child with his much older teacher. Classy. Did I say classy? The word I meant was trashy...and the trailer gave no indication of any better. I find Andy Samberg to be generally pretty likable....but I don't think even he could have tempted me to watch this.

2. Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 2 - It was a really hard decision not to have this one in the top spot, but I wanted this list to be different than last years.... But really, I don't know that I could ever watch this or any of the other films in this series. At this point I'll be honest, it's a blindly hating pride thing. because I'm sure some entertainment value could be derived from them (unlike the film below...) But it's always a proud moment when I say that I have not seen a single one, nor do I plan to. And now I'm just glad the series is over. Here's hoping it stays dead. And the number one most unwatchable movie of 2012 IS:

1. Madea's Witness Protection - So what could be more excruciatingly painful than Twilight? That is indeed the eternal question isn't it? Well the answer is this: I'm not sure if I would ever be able to survive a viewing experience of this or any Madea movie. WHAT.....I ask you, WHAT is the appeal of a black man dressing as an obese woman? (Or any man dressing as a fat woman for that matter?!) Because Tyler Perry, Martin Lawrence and Eddie Murphy can't seem to get enough of it. And apparently audiences are too....but seriously WHAT audience is craving this? I just can't understand it. Every time I see a trailer for one of these movies I cringe for almost a lifetime (yeah that's right, I'm STILL cringing...) Twilight ended, now when will these!?!?

And that's a wrap! Any I missed? Was I too harsh on the ten above? Let me know your opinions in the comments below! Hopefully I'll get to the Top Ten Worst of 2012 (that *I* personally saw) either Wednesday or Friday. Tootleloo!