Focus- Focus has finally made it to Redbox. This is one I’ve been waiting on. You can’t go wrong with Will Smith. In this movie, Will Smith plays a slick con artist named Nicky. Nicky’s veteran skills are challenged, however, when he meets a former flame/intern named Jess in the middle of one of his high stake cons. It’s true, you’re gonna have flashbacks of Oceans 11, but who cares. You’ve got to enjoy this new criminal thriller with Will Smith. This movie is rated R and stars Will Smith, Margot Robbie, B.D. Wong, Gerald McRaney, and Rodrigo Santoro.
American Sniper –If you hang an American flag from your porch, you can’t miss this movie! This movie is made for you, but don’t worry if you’re not the type. I don’t have a flag hanging myself (far from it), but I still enjoyed this movie. This is due to the fact that Bradley Cooper does a great job in portraying a realistic American soldier. The movie is also interesting in how it shows the contrast between home and war and the struggle the character faces coping with the two simultaneously. Also, this story is based on a true story. The real life persons ironically were in the process of the criminal trial (not to give anything away) when this movie came out. Bad luck for the defendant I’d say. This movie is rated R and stars Bradley Cooper, Jake McDorman, Navid Negahban, Sienna Miller, and Luke Grimes.
Black or White – This movie is about a racially themed custody battle between the girl’s grandmother and grandfather. Elliot Anderson (played by Kevin Costner), a white man, has raised his granddaughter, Eloise, since his daughter (Eloise’s mother) died in childbirth. Eloise is now much older when her grandmother (played by Octavia Spencer), an African American woman, wants to put Eloise under the custody of her son, Eloise’s father. The problem is that Eloise’s father is a drug addict who the grandfather blames for the death of his daughter. The fight goes beyond racial boundaries, but race still plays a part in this family drama. I think the biracial family struggle makes for a good drama worth seeing. This movie is rated PG-13 and stars Octavia Spencer, Kevin Costner, Jillian Estell, Mpho Koaho, and Bill Burr.
While We Were young – This one slipped in under the radar for me and it was a great surprise! This movie is truly funny and enjoyable to watch. The story is one of a middle-aged couple kinda going through what some might call a mid-life crisis together. The husband (played by Ben Stiller), a film maker, and his wife (played by Naomi Watts) are happy but when they meet a much younger couple their life takes a twist. They try out the hipster lifestyle and find they quite enjoy it and feel much younger. Their age slowly creeps up on them however, and the couple will have to decide what direction to take with their lives. Overall, a really cute film. This movie is rated R and stars Ben Stiller, Naomi Watts, Adam Driver, Amanda Seyfried, and Adam Horovitz.
Last Knights – This is another one where you find yourself asking, “where did this come from?” I’d say it’s worth watching only because of who’s in it: Clive Owen and Morgan Freeman. The story is a bit ancient, quite literally, but the cinematography is nicely done. I would relay the story but it’s not why you watch the movie. It’s a credible movie. Just come prepared for swords; slow, epic speeches; and battle. This movie is rated R and stars Clive owne, Morgan Freeman, Cliff Curtis, Askel Hennie, and Peyman Moadi.
Jupiter Ascending – a bit sci-fi but good. It’s a battle of the worlds type movie but here’s the twist: the future of the world lies in the hands of a female heroin, Jupiter. Jupiter is played by Mila Kunis, not the first actor I would pick for world heroin, but hey at least it’s not your typical man saves the world story. The signs of Jupiter’s birth predicts greatness but Jupiter grows up with little action. In the midst of working in a mundane cleaning position, a hunter (played by Channing Tatum) arrives on Earth to track her down. That’s right, he’s not from around here. Things start to turn epic as Jupiter learns of her true identity and role in saving the cosmos. This movie is rated PG-13 and stars Mila kunis, Channing Tatum, Douglas Booth, Sean Bean, and Eddie Redmayne.
The Loft – Three words: sexy, scandal, thriller. This movie is a kind of its own. The story is a strange one in that it centers around a uptown loft rented by several young men who are in need of a place to create their fantasies absent their wives if you know what I mean. Things turn hairy, however, as the Loft becomes a place of alleged murder and mystery. The men must solve the mystery before their lives are ruined. This movie is rated R and stars Karl Urban, James Marsden (whom ladies will recall from the Notebook), Wentworth Miller, Eric Stonestreet, and Matthias Schoenaerts.
Survivor – This was a must see on my list. This movie is a new and upgraded version of the old spy framed for a crime he (except in this case it is a she) didn’t commit and must race the clock to clear his (her) name and stop the bad guys (still mostly guys here, ha) story. The graphics are top-notch and the story is detailed and well done. You won’t be surprised to learn that the movie is directed by James McTeague, the guy that brought us V for Vendetta back in 2006. Survivor is rated PG-13 and stars Milla Jovovich (Known mostly from Resident Evil), Pierce Brosnan, Dylan McDermott, Angela Bassett, Robert Forster.
Chappie – In a futuristic world (in which Anderson Cooper has maintained the same appearance as his current age), a robotic army is threatening the well-being of mankind. That’s where Chappie comes in. Chappie is one of these robots turned good through the engineering of some brave souls wishing to fight back. Chappie becomes their only hope of survival. This movies succeeds in its creation of a cute but destructive robotic power and the portrayal of new types of relationship that form in the futuristic world. This movie is rated R and stars Dev Patel, Sharlto Copley, Yolandi Visser, Brandon Auret, and Jose Pablo Cantillo.
The DUFF – If you liked Mean Girls (which I did), you’re probably going to like The Duff as well. It’s another high-school popularity movie which I’d say is made with about the same quality of story line and filming. It’s true, the story has been told about a million times about the boy or girl who fakes a jock boyfriend or popular girl girlfriend in order to make a reputation of their own. While history repeats itself, it does inevitably take on some new twists such as the title, DUFF (Designated Ugly Fat Friend). I think this movie is cute and worth seeing despite the repeated story line. This movie is rated PG-13 and stars Mae Whitman, Bella Thorne, Robbie Amell, Skyler, Samuels, and Bianca Santos.