December 10 2014


 

December 10, 2014

The Hundred-Foot Journey
An Indian family, fleeing from persecution in India, are traveling across Europe. When their van breaks down in a picturesque small French village, they decide to journey no further, and, settle down there. They purchase a property on the edge of the town and prepare to open an Indian restaurant. Meanwhile, a rather arrogant French woman, who has a renowned restaurant right across the road from them, is worried about the potential competition. She gets up to many underhanded things to try to ruin the Indian family’s business. Celebrated director Lasse Hallstrom makes another one of his heartwarming movies. Ok, this one is sentimental, but, it’s sweet in the nicest of possible ways. Be prepared to shed a few tears at the conclusion of the movie. Famous Indian actor Om Puri is marvelous as the family’s father, while, Helen Mirren speaks flawless French in a near flawless performance.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
This is a wacky piece of Pop Art, masquerading as a movie. Let’s not dwell on the plot too much. It’s enough to know that the four principal characters are Teenagers. They are Mutants. They are Ninjas, and, they are Turtles. They are on a mission to save New York from the evil plans of a hi-tech billionaire. There is a lot of humor and wit in Jonathan Liebesman’s fast-paced action movie. In addition, there is a lengthy car-chase which is just spectacular. On-the-whole, the entire movie is breathtaking, exhilarating, and highly amusing. What is to be admired most are the four stuntmen who perform some incredible feats, burdened by their bulky turtle costumes. Also, their ability to give expression and characterization to each turtle is remarkable. This is great escapist cinema for the young, and young at heart.

Stretch
A young man comes to Hollywood, with dreams of becoming an actor. But, like so many before him, he finishes up in a menial job. In-between failed auditions; this particular actor is a driver for a stretch limousine company. One night, he is hired by an eccentric millionaire to drive him around town and run some errands for him. One really crazy situation leads to another. It becomes quite a crazy night. Joe Carnahan makes a very stylish and sleek ‘black’ comedy, with plenty of twists and turns. Patrick Wilson is terrific as the very bewildered actor, while, Jessica Alba is his luscious main ‘squeeze’.

The Salvation
In the early 1870s, in America’s Wild West, a Danish settler is at a railway station awaiting the arrival of his family from Denmark. However, while continuing their journey home on a stagecoach, the man’s son and wife are killed by thugs, who are also passengers on the stagecoach. These vicious murders are to unleash an epic tale about revenge, lost love, and, greed. There are no big surprises in the plot of Kristian Levring’s Scandinavian funded Western. However, the film is an interesting look at the plight of immigrants in America during the 19th Century. Also, the predictability of the movie is relived by some truly remarkable cinema-photography, and, an extremely powerful and very riveting performance from Mads Mikkelsen.

St. Vincent
A single working mom, and her son, move into a new house. Having no-one else to turn to, she asks the cranky old man next door if he will babysit her son each afternoon on his return from school. Over a period of time, the man is to teach the boy all about street fighting, horse gambling, and, ‘Ladies of the Night’. Theodore Melfi makes a pleasant situation-comedy, which looks at the inevitable things life has a tendency to throw up. Bill Murray gives a wonderful performance, as he slowly reveals the warmth of his grouchy old man. Meanwhile, Melissa McCarthy keeps her foul-mouth shut, and, gives a nicely modulated performance as the mother struggling to make ends meet.

Rudderless
The son of a powerful advertising executive is killed while committing a school massacre. The father cannot cope. He totally flips-out, gives up his job, and goes to live in a boat moored on a lake. A couple of years later, he comes across some songs his son wrote, and, he starts to perform them at an ‘open mic’ night in a local bar. Gradually, he is to attract followers. A band forms around him. This band knows nothing about the origins of the songs they are performing. Esteemed character-actor William H. Macy makes his directorial debut with this film, and, he presents a well-crafted drama. Billy Crudup also presents a very sound and emotionally moving performance.

Catch Hell
Ryan Phillippe plays a famous actor, on location in the Deep South. There, he is kidnapped by some red-necks, who hold him captive and do some very dreadful things to him. For what the movie has to say, it takes way too long.

Miss Meadows
An extremely prim and proper school-teacher has a strict moral code, and, if you do not live up to her standards of behavior, she most likely will kill you.

If I Stay
After a car-crash a girl’s disembodied soul watches the efforts to revive her.

Stonehearst Asylum
In 1899 the patients in an English insane asylum take over the establishment.

Ouija
While playing with an Ouija Board, some teenagers summon-up a bad spirit.

Hit By Lightning
A lonely man falls in love with a woman who wants him to kill her husband.

* Also available on Blu Ray.
# Also available in 3D.

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