I am a huge fan of independent filmmaking for the reason that I feel you are allowed to be more creative then if you were working for a big studio. I also feel that sometimes Indie films can be better and that is why I chose to watch Band Of Robbers for today’s film. Band Of Robbers re-imagines our classic tale of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn by making them adults and bringing them to today’s world. Tom Sawyer (Adam Nee) is a bumbling cop who can’t seem to let go of the idea of buried treasure that he and Huckleberry Finn (Kyle Gallner) have been chasing since they were kids. Finn has just been released from prison and is looking to go straight until Tom convinces him that the treasure is still out there. The two will embark on one heck of adventure that we surely will not forget even if it means breaking the law! The film also stars Matthew Gray Gubler (The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou) as Joe Harper, Hannibal Buress (Daddy’s Home) as Ben Rogers, Melissa Benoist (Supergirl) as Becky, Daniel Edward Mora (Harsh Times) as Jorge, Stephen Lang (Avatar) as Injun Joe, Eric Christian Olsen (Fired Up!) as Sid Sawyer, Johnny Pemberton (21 Jump Street) as Tommy Barnes, and the film was directed by Aaron Nee and Adam Nee.
As far as the film is concerned, I actually thought that the film was very enjoyable to watch. It wasn’t one of those films that was laugh out loud funny, but rather that it was an enjoyable to watch kind of funny. A lot of the content in the film was kind of predictable at times, but you didn’t mind that with this film. I loved how they divided things up into chapters, but sometimes the titles of the chapters kind of gave away what was going to happen in that sequence. Kyle Gallner in my opinion is an underrated actor who doesn’t get enough credit which is just my opinion like I said. I thought he was terrific, but the real star of the show was definitely Adam Nee who kind of plays this guy who is unwilling to let go of his childhood because what was going to be a great moment then escaped him. So, he has a hard time letting that go because he is afraid of regret even if it means getting his friends in trouble along with him. That is essentially the element that I loved about this film because we all sort of hang on to something that we didn’t get to accomplish because we were forced to grow up. Well maybe not all of us! Hannibal Buress is awesome, Matthew Gray Gubler was a great addition to the team, and Stephen Lang was great as the infamous protagonist Injun Joe. The film is available right now on Netflix as we speak and I think it’s worth checking out. That is why I am going to give the film an B+ for a final grade.
Just about every month, I have watched a different animated film so I decided to keep it going by watching another one for the month of April. The film I chose for today is called The Nut Job and it’s one that wasn’t done by Disney or Sony. The film follows Surly (Will Arnett), a squirrel who never seems to get anything right in his life and to the point that everyone in the park hates him. One day after a routine heist of nuts goes wrong, Surely is banished out of the park and all of the creatures in the park are left with no food to survive winter. A store that is being disguised as a nut store, but really is a front for a ban heist is opened nearby and Surly will try everything he can to pull off the biggest heist to regain the trust of the park. The film also stars Liam Neeson (Taken) as Raccoon, Brendan Fraser (School Ties) as Grayson, Katherine Heigl (Knocked Up) as Andie, Stephen Lang (Avatar) as King, Maya Rudolph (Bridesmaids) as Precious, Jeff Dunham as Mole, Gabriel Iglesias (Magic Mike XXL) as Jimmy, Sarah Gadon (Enemy) as Lana, and the film was directed by Peter Lepeniotis Gotta Catch Santa Claus).
What is the great thing about all or most animated films these days? Every great or good character has a comedic relief sidekick that keeps the audience glued and kids laughing. In this film, it would have to be Buddy The Rat who is constantly there to help his friend Surly no matter what. The one thing about this film that I really liked is that every character is very likable even the villain Raccoon (voiced by Liam Neeson). This was definitely an interesting and funny animated film for one that wasn’t made by either Disney Pixar or Sony, but it didn’t have a heck of a lot of laughs. It was definitely entertaining and it didn’t bore me, but it just didn’t have a lot of those funny moments in it like some of Disney’s films. I wondered why Psy’s music and song Gangham Style was attached to this film and it’s because it was funded by a bunch of different Korean producers hence the appearance he makes as an animated character. I was also surprised to see that Jeff Dunham voice acted in this film because I thought he only did the puppet gigs, but he was great as the mole. This is definitely a film that will more than likely fun for the kids and it will teach you the lesson that no matter how much of a screw up you think you are you can always redeem yourself. The film is available right now on Netflix as we speak so check it out. I am going to give the film an B for a final grade.
When the film Ted first hit the scene in 2012, I thought it was one of the best new ideas in comedy I had seen in a while. Now we all know that coming out with a sequel can be a daunting task especially when you’re trying to capture the magic of the first film. Well, that is exactly what Seth MacFarlane (Family Guy) was trying to do with Ted 2 which sees him return as our favorite vulgar teddy bear. This time around, Ted is sort of happily married with Tami Lynn (Jessica Barth), but John Bennett (Mark Wahlberg) is not so happy since he’s divorced. Things are about to change for Ted as well when he and Tami Lynn decide to have a baby. After the couple decide to adopt, Ted is denied and is told that the government no longer recognizes him as a person, but property. With the help of a fresh lawyer named Sam Jackson (Amanda Seyfried), Ted will challenge the government in court to gain his civil rights back. The film also stars Giovanni Ribisi (Avatar) as Donnie, Sam J. Jones (Flash Gordon) as himself, Patrick Warburton (The Venture Brothers) as Guy, Morgan Freeman (The Shawshank Redemption) as Patrick Meighan, John Carroll Lynch (Gran Torino) as Tom Jessup, and Liam Neeson (Taken) as a Trix Cereal Customer.
While the film had it’s very funny moments, I just felt like it didn’t capture the magic of the original film. I am not saying that the movie was bad because it was actually pretty entertaining, it just wasn’t better than the first film. Mark Wahlberg’s character was a little more of the star of this film in my opinion than Ted. He was more sympathetic and at times he was a little more interesting than Ted. One of my favorite moments of the film came when they were on the roof throwing apples at joggers at night. That was a very funny exchange and give Amanda Seyfried some credit as well because she held her own with them. Giovanni Ribisi once again did an amazing job playing a creepazoid in the film as Donnie. Ribisi does an amazing job recapturing the creepiness and taking it to a new level in the second film. It was great to Sam J. Jones back in the film and Patrick Warbutton is hilarious as well as Guy (who has a new boyfriend in the film). The exchange between Ted and Liam Neeson over Trix cereal is worth watching the film for sure. While I enjoyed the writing for the film, it was a little predictable at times, but that’s OK cause it flowed well. I enjoyed watching the film and I think it’s worth watching at least once. I am going to give the film a B+ for a final grade.