The Wolf of Wall Street has fantastic lead performances, but Scorsese… MoreThe Wolf of Wall Street has fantastic lead performances, but Scorsese disappoints with this over indulgent mess. The story rings hollow thanks to completely unlikable characters, a far too lengthy story that is 3 hours long, and an over reliance on sex and drugs to entertain. There's moments of gleeful exuberance, but it gets exhausting after awhile watching these characters go absolutely insane on drugs. I understand that this is a cautionary tale, but they could have cut back at least a little bit. The one positive I see from this is that they allowed all of this craziness without giving it a NC17 rating. There's a ton of nudity and language to go with the drugs and sex and I don't know how they got it through the rating system, but it is a win for anti-censorship. This was definitely my least favorite of the Best Picture nominees this year. I usually love Scorsese, but he went overboard with this film.
American Hustle certainly has problems sustaining its ridiculous story… MoreAmerican Hustle certainly has problems sustaining its ridiculous story and characters, but this is incredibly lively filmmaking with solid performances from every cast member. The story is kind of hard to follow at times because they try to make you look one way while doing something else the other way, but it was very enjoyable. I liked the dynamics of the characters. Christian Bale and Amy Adams in particular were the most impressive. I love Jennifer Lawrence as an actress and she is decent here, but she did not deserve an Oscar Nomination. The whole movie is gorgeous to watch and completely envelops you in its style. It's really nothing more than an incredibly stylish caper film and I don't understand why it was nominated for so many Oscars, but it is a very enjoyable couple hours if you like more mature films. Just don't go in expecting it to blow your socks off.
About on par with the first film, even if I liked that one just a… MoreAbout on par with the first film, even if I liked that one just a little more for its old-fashioned whimsy. This one is more of a political thriller with character building than wall to wall action, even though that made this feel more like "Avengers Lite" than Captain America 2 because they spend just as much time focusing on Black Widow and Nick Fury as they do Cap. Still, this is the first satisfying standalone installment of the Avenger members films after being mildly disappointed in Iron Man 3 and Thor 2. The action is good, the plot keeps you on your toes, and it sets up for the next film nicely. It does kind of feel like a middle ground sequel than full story, but minor nitpick. I enjoyed it and it is nice to see Captain America get the success of the more mainstream superheroes.
Homefront is mostly just your typical Jason Statham action film, but… MoreHomefront is mostly just your typical Jason Statham action film, but it is livened up a bit by a scenery chewing performance from James Franco a story with enough intrigue to keep you invested until the end. The action is fairly standard for the genre at this point, but still well done. Sylvester Stallone did the screenplay, which is contrived and ridiculous in spots and could have been improved. He wrote it specifically with Statham in mind though, and it shows. It caters to his good qualities enough to make this an enjoyable B movie experience, even if it isn't exactly high quality cinema. Definitely worthwhile for action buffs or Statham fans, but little appeal beyond that really.