Announcement

Hey all!!

I know I’ve been absent for the last week or so.  Real life and a small mental health blip have made it a bit difficult to get stuff done.  However, I haven’t given up on this project and will be back to it soon enough.  I’m searching Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Vudu and Crackle for streamables and have a pile of books calling my name.

In other news, I got my very first donation!  I want to give a great big thank you to my donor, and am in the midst of streamlining that process for the future.  Hopefully it won’t require upgrading my account because, donation aside, that’s not something I can afford right now.

As always, your input and content suggestions are always welcome and appreciated.

Thanks much.

~Kelly (aka That Girl)

Polar

Polar

Polar

Directed By: Jonas Åkerlund
Starring: Mads Mikkelsen, Vanessa Hudgens, Katheryn Winnick, Fei Ren, Ruby O. Fee, Matt Lucas, Robert Maillet, Anthony Grant, Josh Cruddas, Richard Dreyfuss, Johnny Knoxville, et. al.
Rated: TV-MA
Grade: C+

Duncan Vizla, a haunted expert assassin nearing a mandatory retirement that comes with a multi-million dollar final payout, decides to take on one final job for his employer, a company called Damocles. In the course of attempting to complete the assassination, Duncan learns that there was more to the job than he had been told, and eventually deduces that it was a setup intended to get him killed. Upon returning to one of his homes, this one located in a remote Montana town, to quietly wait for 50th birthday, he finds himself becoming enthralled with his nearest neighbor, Camille, a quiet, vulnerable young woman. However, his employer has sent an elite group of young assassins after him to ensure that they won’t have to make the payment. After the initial attack fails and Camille is taken, Duncan does everything in his extensive skill set to get her back.

This movie should have been much better than it actually was. Despite having several better than average actors and an interesting, somewhat original plot. Toward the beginning of the film, the action is often interrupted to splash a character’s name across the screen manga-style, and the pacing seems off. All but a handful of characters spend the entirety of their screen time chewing on scenery and hamming it up. The only explanation we’re given for Damocles wanting to kill off its retiring assassins is pure greed, which doesn’t hold up to the level effort put into eliminating Duncan. There’s also a plot point revolving around Camille recounting a story of being raped by a mall Santa while working as an elf, which is never really cleared up as to whether she made it up after her true motivations for moving to the town are revealed.

The effects are all pretty good. There isn’t too much CGI used, and the background filler isn’t obvious.

This movie is probably best saved for when you need background noise while working on another project. Despite having the potential, the movie doesn’t really find it’s feet until the last 10 minutes or so, but by then, you may be wondering if you can request your time back. Mikkelsen and Hudgens do a great job with their respective roles, but then again, they seem to be the only ones taking anything seriously.

Polar is currently only available though Netflix, and can’t be viewed through any other service. There is no word as to whether or not they plan to release it for purchase/rent.

Have something you want me to review? Let me know!

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Chain Reaction

chainreaction

Chain Reaction

Directed By: Andrew Davis
Starring: Keanu Reeves, Rachel Weisz, Morgan Freeman, Brian Cox, Fred Ward, Kevin Dunn, Joanna Cassidy, Chelcie Ross, Nicholas Rudall, Tzi Ma, Krzysztof Pieczynski, et. al.
Rated: PG-13
Grade: B+

Shortly after a successful test of a green energy generator, University of Chicago undergrad student Eddie Kasalavich returns to the lab he’s working out of to find his professor murdered and the energy prototype set to overload. With the FBI attempting to arrest him for murder and espionage, Eddie goes on the run with the only person who believes him to be innocent of the crime, fellow researcher Dr. Lily Sinclair, who appears to have also been framed. Together they attempt to gather evidence that proves their innocence while forces both inside and outside the law attempt to track them down.

So far as spy-ish thrillers go, this one hold up fairly well. While far from perfect, a storyline involving a new, clean energy source and the desire to keep it away from the general public is something that’s still applicable in today’s society, especially as we currently try to seek out alternative energy sources to stop dependence on fossil fuels. The reasoning behind the bad guys’ wanting to destroy such an energy source is typically financially motivated, as they try to make it out to be for the benefit of the global economy. The fact that they don’t come off as complete crazies, even now, shows how strongly written and acted it is.

Some of the effects haven’t held up very well over the years, but a surprising number of them have. The background filler remains mostly unnoticeable.

Pretty much anyone looking for a decent action/thriller should like this movie. As stated before, the story is fairly solid and holds up surprisingly well, though I can’t say much about the science. It was also interesting to see Morgan Freeman play against type as one of the bad guys, thought he does keep his hands clean throughout the majority of the movie.

Chain Reaction isn’t currently available free to stream anywhere, but it can be rented through Redbox or Netflix home delivery service, as well as purchased through any participating store or online retailer.

Have something you want me to review? Let me know!

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