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DJANGO UNCHAINED MOVIE REVIEW

Quentin Tarantino’s “Django Unchained” takes us back to the year, 1858, two years before the Civil War.  I appreciate any attempt to bring back Westerns. It’s a genre ripe for a resurgence.  The setting works:  A bounty hunter (Christof Waltz) teams up with a slave, Django (Jamie Foxx) to capture criminals & ultimately help find & free Django’s slave wife. (Kerry Washington)

There are excellent scenes within the film. You’ll enjoy textbook Tarantino dialogue exchanges. Leonardo DiCaprio turns in an excellent performance as a savvy & sinister slave owner, the callus Calvin Candie.

As a whole however, this wasn’t one of my favorite Tarantino films.  Going back a few years, ‘Inglourious Basterds’ was utterly brilliant.  The Hans Landa character played by Christof Waltz, in my opinion, should have remained inside the world of ‘Inglourious Basterds.’ Instead, I kept seeing Hans resurface in ‘Django Unchained.’  I know everyone else did too, but won’t admit it.  Let’s compare.  In ‘Basterds’ he was dubbed ‘The Jew Hunter.’ Here he’s The Bounty Hunter. For some reason I can’t explain, he also hails from Germany.  Oh, & he speaks at least (3) languages, just like Hans Landa.

This is just nit-picking now.  Why do certain directors always feel compelled to hurl themselves into their own movie? It stymies me. Why does Quentin do this?  My first thought every time I see him onscreen in one of his own films is: What is Quentin doing?  It catapults me out of the movie! No one in Hollywood will admit this. They all want to work on one of his movies. I’m not an actor. So again I ask Quentin, Why insist? Why?

Final note, “Django Unchained” is still better than 85% of what’s out in theaters.  It’s worth watching. You can follow me on Twitter @leoquinones

 

 

 



Horrible Bosses Movie Review

Here’s what I’m diggin’ about “Horrible Bosses.”  It’s true to itself.  Do the math. Three guys, one problem: They hate their bosses.  Dale (Charlie Day) is ridden by his horny, dentist horrible boss, Julia (Jennifer Aniston). Kurt (Jason Sudeikis) takes lumps from his heir, horrible boss, Bobby (Colin Farrell) & Nick (Jason Bateman) has served eight years jumping hurdles for his hideous, horrible boss, Dave (Kevin Spacey).

When the work place becomes too much to bare, these dimwits decide to take drastic measures.  Things unfold, but the jokes aren’t obvious.  They’re like slithering snakes in the grass, waiting & all of a sudden they strike!  It happened quite a lot. Lots of laughs.

I’m 100% done with supposed comedies that are really funny in the 2-minute trailer. Y’know the ones.  Where you find yourself in the theater gasping for any laugh that wasn’t already shown in the previews.

“Horrible Bosses” delivers good old-fashion fun at the movies.  For me, standout performances came from Kevin Spacey & Jason Sudeikis.  For the record, there’s no Jennifer Aniston topless scene.  Hey, don’t shoot the messenger.

If your Horrible Boss hasn’t given you the raise you deserve, never fear.  The Film Freak iPhone – iPad App is here.  Money’s tight & this is the movie app that saves you money on movies. Just go to the App Store & search: Film Freak

Let’s Tweet It Out!  Follow me on Twitter @leoquinones



RIO Film Freak Movie Review

“Rio” is the latest animated adventure from Blue Sky Studios, creators of “Ice Age.”  With that said, make sure you’re on time because before the movie starts, there’s a 2-minute “Ice Age” short with Scrat the Squirrel & is ever-elusive nut.  It runs a stunning parallel to one of my childhood faves, Wile E. Coyote(Super Genius)  & The Roadrunner.

This story comes from the imagination of Carlos Saldanha. He directed and or co-directed all the ‘Ice Age’ films.  Rio de Janeiro is his hometown.  Knowing that, you’ll see many layers of visuals only a local boy would know & implement into the frame. Whether it’s ripe, colorful fruit at a local Farmer’s Market or gritty backstreets where suspect deals are made in shade.  The city, countryside & energy of “Rio” is beautifully animated throughout the entire film.

The story revolves around Blu, a Minnesota homebody Macaw who thinks his purpose is to sit in his cage & live off the fat content of his hot chocolate.  The last thing Blu wants or needs is an adventure.  Blu is grounded, literally. He will not even attempt to fly.  That’s the heavy hand Blu was dealt, but he’s ok with it.

A scientist named Tulio travels to Minnesota to inform Blu’s buddy & owner Linda that he’s the last male of the species.  To make things right in nature, he’s gotta take Blu back to Rio to meet Jewel, (Anne Hathaway) the only surviving female. You do the math.

The main characters soon find themselves in the heart of the jungle.  There’s plenty of help along the way from Rafael the Tucan (George Lopez) Nico, a soda pop cap wearin’ canary  (Jamie Foxx)  Pedro, a cardinal (will.i.am) & Luis the bulldog (Tracy Morgan).  “Rio” kicks in with elaborate musical numbers & kids will eat it up. I did like the villain, Nigel the Bitter Cockatoo (Jermanine Clement). He’s over sized, scruffed up & wasn’t to be trifled with in the least.

And the end of the day, what’s Blu’s purpose? What’s the message?  What I took from this is….fly & be free.  You might be scared to death, but there comes a point in your life when you’ve gotta say ‘what the heck’ & jump out of the nest, whatever that nest may be in your life.   There were a bunch of kids at the screening I attended.  They simply loved it.  One kid was so upset, he began kicking, screaming & crying because he didn’t want the movie to end. He wanted his new friends back on the screen.  That’s the most real & honest review you should consider.  “Rio” was made for him.

“Rio” is Rated “G”

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Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, Jamie Foxx, will.i.am, Tracy Morgan, George Lopez, Jane Lynch, Wanda Sykes, Leslie Mann, Jermanine Clement, Rodrigo Santoro
Directed by: Carlos Saldanha
Release Date: April 15, 2011



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