The Dallas Movie Screening Group

This is the homepage of the Dallas Movie Screening Group. To join our mailing list you must sign up at our group page on Yahoo. You will then be connected to receive notices on how to find passes to the local screenings in the DFW area. It's up to you to pickup or sign up for passes. You can also barter, trade or just giveaway passes you don't want, need or share with other members of the group. Please read the instructions on the Yahoo page very carefully before posting. This group is closely moderated so that your mail box is not full of spam or other unnecessary mail. We appreciate everyone's consideration and cooperation.

You can use this homepage for posting comments, reviews, and other things that cannot be posted to the group. Of course spam is not allowed. Thanks!

To join the Dallas Movie Screening Yahoo Group:
dallasmoviescreenings-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

Reesa's Reviews can also be found at:
http://www.moviegeekfeed.com

Logo art by Steve Cruz http://www.mfagallery.com

Website and Group Contact: dalscreenings@gmail.com

Friday, January 18, 2019

Glass





M. Night Shyamalan knocked everyone's socks off with the 1999 Sixth Sense. Then Unbreakable in 2000 saw some success, but subsequent films were interesting and disappointing. The 2016 Split garnered positive reviews and was a huge financial success. The character from Split was cut from Unbreakable, so the Eastrail 177 Trilogy was created by uniting the Mr. Glass, David Dunn and the 23 personalities of Kevin Wendell Crumb. If you have not seen the other two films, you may be adrift as to what the heck is going on. Like all Shyamalan movies, they are finely created, with great images, sets, and setting up mystery and expectations. A lot has been made to not reveal the twist ending. So no spoilers here.

David Dunn (Bruce Willis) the only survivor of a train wreck in Unbreakable is now working in a home security store with his son Joseph (Spencer Treat Clark). Joseph has always believed in his father's superhero abilities of The Overseer. He listens to the police radio band directing him to crime to be rectified. The police are after some missing cheer leaders who have been kidnapped by former zoo employee Kevin (James McAvoy) who taunts his victims with his various split personalities who he calls the horde. The horde is ruled by Patricia, but they are physically protected by The Beast. David attempts to save the young women and confront The Beast. The police show up and arrest them both.

Sarah Paulson plays the very controlled Dr. Ellie Staple: A psychiatrist specializing in delusions of grandeur. She gets the men committed to Raven Hill. She joins them with Mr. Glass (Samuel L. Jackson), aka Elijah Price, the comic book expert, aka genius Mastermind. Mr. Glass sits in a wheel chair due to his fragile bones and heavy sedation. He's been locked up for the past 19 years after being a mass murderer while trying to convince the world that superheros walk among us. Dr. Staple tells them she only has a few days to get them to stop believing they have super powers.

The believers, Casey Cooke (Anya Taylor-Joy) was a victim of the horde who managed to survive the Beast, Mrs. Price (Charlayne Woodard), Elijah's mother who always encouraged her son that he was special, and David's son Joseph who fights to get his father released. Dr. Stable tries to convince them that they could not possibly be super, which of course they know is not true. It's a wordy script that talks about this whole superhero universe that has become a pulp mythos for nerds everywhere. Seriously what would happen if people with extraordinary abilities inhabited our world?

Bruce Willis seems vacant trying to suppress his gift of strength, stamina, invincibility, and extrasensory ability to see a person's crimes when touching them. Samuel L. Jackson has lots of close face shots looking all drugged up as Mr. Glass. It's James McAvoy who dominates the story with all the multiple personalities that slip in and out especially when a light flashes in his face. There is a lot of anticipation for this film but it's fair to say you will either love it or "meh".
(Review by reesa)





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Sunday, January 13, 2019

Movies Scheduled for the Week of Jan 13 - Jan 19



Yes, it's January and there are very few screenings. Hope you get the chance to catch the ones destined for the Big Award show coming up.

Just enjoy the cold weather, staying home warm and safe. Check out your streaming services.


Jan 13 - Jan 19

Mon - Jan 14

AGFA Secret Screening - 7:00 pm - Alamo Drafthouse Richardson

Tue - Jan 15

Glass - 7:30 pm - AMC Northpark

Wed - Jan 16

Glass - 7:30 pm - AMC Northpark

Sat - Jan 19

Mermaids - 6:00 pm - Alamo Drafthouse





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Destroyer








What I liked about this movie is the fact it is gritty and kind of a throwback to 1970’s American cinema that makes no excuses for its violence factor and the ratio in which it occurs. Think back to the days of “The Taking of Pelham 1, 2,3” or Martin Scorsese’s “Taxi Driver.”

It was directed by Karyn Kasuma, who helmed the 2003 science-fiction entry “Aeon Flux.” More recently she helmed 2009’s “Jennifer’s Body,” scribed by “Juno” Oscar-winning writer Diablo Cody. Neither of these are worthwhile, but they show a more diverse hand in storytelling that never fell into doldrums or the like.

What also worked for me was the presence of Nicole Kidman, who has constantly downplayed her beauty and on-screen allure and presence for years. I’ve been a fan of hers for years, even going back to 1989’s “Dead Calm,” one of the few water-based entries I actually liked.

“Destroyer,” for all intents and purposes is just a good old undercover tale about a woman, Erin Bell (Nicole Kidman) who is deep undercover in a bank heist scheme that goes awry. She shares some great screen time with co-star Toby Kebell, one of the nefarious bad guys she gets involved with.

The trouble I sometimes have with movies like this is that it is not for the greater good, rather an individual’s own self-worth and just plain old greed. It is not for the greater good or a child’s medical condition, rather just plain old gluttony and the ability to get ahead.

As a point of reference, I would compare this to Christopher Nolan’s pretzel-twisting tale “Memento,” (2000) in that the storyline is not all spelled out for you in a paint-by numbers style and execution. The story never hits any dry spells, but is just very methodical in taking you to an end point where it can just settle down.

Kidman takes one of her bolder steps in presenting her character as a deeply flawed and troubled persona. She gives Bell her own nuanced identity, one that finds her own individuality.

Bell even has a daughter she is estranged from and only sees on a minuscule basis.

The setting occurs in a small town in middle America, one with a small-town police force. What was also cool was to see the characters’ interactions with each other and how each person stands out since every person had their own separate angle to the story.

“Destroyer” is a worthwhile movie since it shows Kidman in a whole new light. Although she is known for her beauty and grace, best exemplified in Baz Luhrmann’s “Moulin Rouge,” (2001) one of the few musical entries I can actually tolerate. She also displayed her charm in 1998’s “Practical Magic” with co-star Sandra Bullock as the younger sister of the pair.

“Destroyer” does what it’s supposed to do in that Kidman, known as a great actor and versatile performer, once again shows she can carry her weight with the best of them.

Grade: B-
(Review by Ricky Miller)





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Thursday, January 10, 2019

A Dog's Way Home and Interview with W. Bruce Cameron and Cathryn Michon





Best selling author W. Bruce Cameron has written multiple books on dogs like A Dog's Purpose and the upcoming A Dog's Journey, wrote the screenplay with Cathryn Michon in this touching family film directed by Charles Martin Smith. If you spend your time watching animal videos on social media, this is the long version of a sweet young dog who gets separated from his human and embarks on a 400 mile trek to go home. Bring tissues.

Bryce Dallas Howard is the voice of Bella, a pit bull mix pup who is born under a collapsed building that is occupied with feral cats. When the animal control workers come, they managed to extract the mother dog and some of her babies, while Bella is rescued by one of the mother cats who lets him nurse with her babies. One day Lucas (Jonah Hauer-King) and Olivia (Alexandra Shipp) come by to feed the feral kitties, they discover Bella who they can't resist taking her home. Bella adores her human and his Army veteran mom, Terri (Ashley Judd) who suffers from depression. But they worry the landlord will discover him. Plus there's a pit bull ban in the city of Denver with will destroy any pits they capture. Lucas brings the dog to the VA hospital where he works and Bella quickly becomes a comfort animal for veterans. The crisis comes when the vindictive, corrupt dogcatcher in league with the slimy developer who wants to kill a colony of feral cats living across the street target the dog as a banned breed. Olivia's relatives are willing to take they dog while they find another place to live out of the city. Unfortunately, it's in Farmington, NM.

It is there that Bella, missing her human, becomes fixated on Lucas's last command to "go home" that caused her to be picked up and ended up in the pound. And now she doesn't know where she is. Even though her new caretakers are nice and giver her food, she still wants to complete going home. She jumps the fence and starts a journey that takes her over 2 1/2 years to accomplish. The scenery is outstanding.

Her various adventures involve befriending an orphan baby mountain lion. Since Bella was raised with cats, their friendship is understandable. They help each other forage for food and keep each other warm. It's also a good association when the wolves come calling. Bella learns to find food from wandering dog packs who show him how to find treasure in trash cans and handouts from the back door of restaurants. Bella helps a hiker in an avalanche and gets a home with a gay couple who gives her a collar and love. The most jarring segment is when Bella falls in with a homeless veteran (Edward James Olmos) who uses him to get more handouts. Then later chains him to himself before he dies in the woods leaving Bella to weaken from hunger and thirst before some kids free him. This may be a little too much for younger viewers, but it's quickly followed up Bella finding her way home.

Bella who is played by rescue dog Shelby is as cute and lovable as a dog can be. It's unfortunate that the CGI segments of the film involving the wolves and the cougar are so distracting. The play with the cat and dog on the ice is like a Disney film and it's hard to accept the live dog and fake cat. As a movie for kids, they probably won't notice. It's also a plus to see Wes Studi as a police captain at the end to make sure all is well. This is a nice family film for dog lovers everywhere.
(Review by reesa)



Shelby star of A Dog's Way Home:

Author W. Bruce Cameron & Cathryn Michon screenwriters for A Dog's Way Home at a round table talk about the movie.







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The Upside




The French 2011 film The Intouchables, which was itself inspired by the life of Philippe Pozzo di Borgo has had two other remakes in the Indian Oopiri and the Argentinian Inseparables. This is the third remake directed by Neil Burger and written by Jon Hartmere starring Bryan Cranston and Kevin Hart. It really gives Hart a chance to show some serious acting moments and not the usual manic characters of his comedy outings. Of course with Bryan Cranston and Nicole Kidman will make anyone look better by association. The French film was nominated for C├ęsar Award for Best Film and awarded Omar Sy for the Best Actor. This film is not quite up to par to Intouchables, but decent enough to bring one to the theaters in January for mindless entertainment.

Kevin Hart plays a parolee Dell Scott who needs to have his job searches signed to keep him out of jail which leads him erroneously to the applicant line for a Life Auxiliary at a penthouse of Phillip Lacasse (Bryan Cranston). Yvonne (Nicole Kidman) his business manager helps him interview prospective aides, but they are boring and pretentious. Enter Dell who is thinking he's applying as a janitor, demanding that they sign his papers. His rough and brash attitude intrigues Phillip who hires him giving him overnight to think it over. We are then introduced to Dell's ex and his son who live in a moldy leaking tenement apartment. He realizes he needs to work to make their lives better.

Yvonne is not happy with Dell joining their household and tells him he has three strikes before they fire him. Dell has to learn how to feed, dress and attend to the more personal needs for Phillip who is paralyzed from the neck down in a paragliding accident. Dell must be on call 24/7 and it takes him awhile before he adjusts to just thinking of himself. He also brings Phillip out of his shell that he has built by grieving over his beloved wife who passed from cancer and of course the loss of mobility. He introduces Dell to opera and Dell introduces him to the Queen Aretha Franklin.

The story has the usual manipulative and formulaic tropes of poor person of color and rich white guy bromance. They are about as opposite as two people can possibly be, but they find common ground. The issue of race doesn't seem to be the main focus except for Phillip's neighbor Carter Locke (Tate Donovan) who reminds Phillip that he lives in the building with his ex-convict employee. The more prevalent issue is the socioeconomic contrast of their lives. The haves and the have nothings. Although Phillip is stupidly rich enough to buy the Nets, but not rich enough to buy the Mets, he's still unhappy stuck in a body that won't move. While Dell, healthy and street smart, is mired in his inability to get out of his own way while trying to stay in his son's life. Of course it all works out in the end, and the journey there is entertaining enough to be worth the popcorn.
(Review by reesa)




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Monday, January 7, 2019

Movies Scheduled for the Week of Jan 6 - Jan 12


Happy New Year everyone! As always it's slim pickings for the beginning of the year. The kiddos are going back to school. The weather is typical Texas torrential downpours and/or shorts and flip flop weather. Last night's Golden Globes was interesting but anticlimactic. I can't seem to take my Christmas tree down yet. Hope to see y'all this week.


January 6 - January 12

Wed - Jan 9

The Upside - 7:00 pm - Angelika Dallas
Perfect Strangers - 7:30 pm - AMC Northpark
The Upside - 7:30 pm - Studio Movie Grill Northwest Hwy

Sat - Jan 12

The Kid Who Would Be King = 10:00 pm - Angelika Dallas







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