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

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Dallas Movie Screenings Reviewers Top 10 2015






Reesa's Top 10:


1. The Revenant
2. Spotlight
3. The Martian
4. Inside Out
5. Room
6. The Big Short
7. Joy
8. Mr. Holmes
9. Steve Jobs
10. Star Wars: The Force Awakens


Chase Lee's Top 10

1. The Revenant
2. Inside Out
3. Room
4. The End of the Tour
5. Steve Jobs
6. Sicario
7. The Hateful Eight
8. Cooties
9. Son of Saul
10. The Hunting Ground


Wyatt Head's Top 10

1. Love and Mercy
2. A Brilliant Young Mind
3. Bridge of Spies
4. Inside Out
5. Chi-raq
6. The Big Short
7. Kingsman: The Secret Service
8. Selma
9. No Escape
10. Secret in Their Eyes


Cheryl Wurtz's Top 10

The Martian
Sicario
The Revenant,
Bridge of Spies
Amy
The Big Short
Concussion
Spotlight
Room
Love and Mercy

All great stories, told well via great scripts
and top notch film makers. Great performances by the
actors. All are total packages. Mention: Mad Max, Star
Wars, Steve Jobs,




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Reesa's List of Movies 2015


Each year it seems my list of screenings have been greatly reduced, mostly due to travel distance to the theaters, funky car problems, time and life get mixed up in there, plus sharing press screenings with the other Dallas Movie Screenings movie reviewers. But it's all good. I've included films seen at the Dallas International Film Festival and the Asian Film Festival Dallas, press screenings, screeners received in the mail or online. It's still a good slate of films.


45 Years
A Girl at My Door
A Walk in the Woods
Alvin and the Chipmunks: Road Chip
American Ultra
Amy
Ant Man
Assassin
Assassination
Avengers: Age of Ulton
Beyond the Brick: A LEGO Brickumentary
Black and White
Black Hat
Bridge of Spies
Brooklyn
Burnt
By the Sea
Carol
Cartel Land
Chappie
Cinderella
Concussion
Creed
Crimson Peak
Danny Collins
Dearest
Divine Access
Do I Sound Gay?
Do You Dream in Color?
Eat With Me
End of Tour
Entourage
Everly
Ex Machina
Fantastic Four
Five Flights Up
Focus
Freeheld
Furious 7
Golden Cane Warrior
Good Kill
Goosebumps
Great Hypnotist
He Named Me Malala
Holbrook/Twain: An American Odyssey
Home
Hot Pursuit
Hotel Transylvania
How to Steal A Dog
I'll See You in My Dreams
Inside Out
Insurgent
Island of Lemurs: Madagascar
Jasmine
Joy
Jupiter Ascending
Jurassic World
Kingsman: Secret Service
Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter
Kung Fu Killer
Ladygrey
Learning to Drive
Legend
Listen to Me Marlon
Love & Mercy
Love the Coopers
Macbeth
Mad Max:Fury Road
Magic Mike XXL
Man From Reno
Manglehorn
Maps to the Stars
Max
McFarland, USA
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
Meru
Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation
Mortdecai
Most Likely to Succeed
Mr. Holmes
My All American
Noble
Our Brand is Crisis
Paddington
Pan
Paper Planes
Pitch Perfect 2
Pixels
Ricki and the Flash
Rock the Kasbah
Room
Run All Night
San Andreas
Seoul Searching
Seven Chinese Brothers
She's the Best Thing In It
Sicario
Sleeping with Other People
Slow West
South Paw
Spare Parts
Spectre
Spotlight
Spy
Star Wars: The Force Awkens
Steve Jobs
Straight Outta Compton
Strange Magic
Suffragette
Taken 3
Terminator: Genisys
The 33
The Adventure of Pepper and Paula
The Age of Adaline
The Big Short
The Clouds of Sils Maria
The Danish Girl
The Duff
The End of the Tour
The Flowers of Shanghai
The Gunman
The Hateful Eight
The Heart of the Sea
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2
The Intern
The Jones Family Will Make a Way
The Last 5 Years
The Last Reel
The Last Witch Hunter
The Longest Ride
The Man from U.N.C.L.E.
The Martian
The Peanuts Movie
The Revenant
The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
The Secret in Their Eyes
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water
The Water Diviner
The Wedding Ringer
Tomorrowland
Trainwreck
What Happened Miss Simone?
Where to Invade Next
Who Am I-No System is Safe
Winter on Fire
Woman in Gold
Women Who Flirt







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Monday, December 28, 2015

The Hateful Eight





Everyone looks forward to Quentin Tarantino's new work from the success of his previous films and this one is a worthy contender. A bit too long and dialogue heavy, it even has an intermission. The first half of the movie is a lot of character exploration and beautiful snowy vistas that could have easily been cut and saved your butt about thirty minutes. The film almost was not made when a copy of the script was leaked, but Tarantino changed his mind during a live reading. A roadhouse release in 70 mm format is being distributed first before the normal digital release on New Year's Eve. Either way, it's worth a viewing no matter what format.

The movie contains some very memorable characters beginning with Major Marquis Warren (Samuel L. Jackson) who flags down a stage coach in the middle of a snowy mountain road. He's got a bunch of frozen dead bodies that he hopes to take to Red Rock to collect the bounty. Inside the coach is John Ruth (Kurt Russell) who is taking the handcuffed Daisy Domergue (Jennifer Jason Leigh) to be hanged. A long the way they encounter Chris Mannix (Walton Goggins) who claims he's the new sheriff of Red Rock. They arrive at Minnie's Haberdashery, a stagecoach lodge, to hold up as a powerful blizzard approaches. Bob (Demián Bichir), a Mexican, greets them, saying Minnie and her husband are off visiting relatives and left him to look after things. Inside they meet Oswaldo Mobray (Tim Roth) who says he's the Red Rock hangman, Joe Gage (Michael Madsen), a diary writing cowboy who says he's on the way to see his mother, General Sandy Smithers (Bruce Dern) who fought for the Confederates.

Warren is suspicious of Bob because Minnie would never leave her lodge especially in someone else's care. And John Ruth doesn't trust anyone, demanding that everyone hand in their weapons except for Warren and Mannix. He thinks they may want to protect Daisy who is one piece of work. John Ruth manages to punch and kick her at every opportunity while she cackles like a maniac licking the blood on her mouth. There is a lot of story set up that tumbles like a ball of snow gathering speed and momentum by the 2nd half of the movie. It's filled with guns, knives, blood splatters, poison, vomit, bad language and full frontal nudity. There's a bit of Agatha Christie whodunit of And Then There Were None as the lodgers are weeded out. There's a murderer in the lodge and only Daisy has seem who done it.

The take a way of this film is that Jennifer Jason Lee should get a supporting actor award for her brutal, stone cold crazy turn as Daisy Domergue. No matter what you feel about the shock of watching her get smacked around by John Ruth, you have to remember it's a Tarantino film, and you never know what's coming next.
(Review by reesa)




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Carol





Carol is a throwback to the melodramatic angst of old black and white movies. But the subject matter would not have been accepted as it is now due to our more enlightened points of view. This film and Danish Girl are hitting all the hashtag trending points in the year that same sex marriages have finally become legal in the U.S. Director Todd Haynes handles the sensitivity of the story based on Patricia Highsmith's novel The Price of Salt (published in 1952) with a screenplay by Phyllis Nagy. This is just another kind love story with beautifully grainy cinematography by Ed Lachman, great costumes and makeup, period cars, and fantastic performances.

Rooney Mara plays Therese Belivet, a shop girl who works at a big store in the toy department. It is there she notices a glamorous older woman who returns the approving stare. Carol Aird (Cate Blanchett) purchases a model train set on the recommendation of Therese. When Carol leaves Therese notices that Carol had left her gloves behind on the counter. Therese mails the gloves to Carol's home in New Jersey. To thank her, Carol invites her to lunch. The two have a connection, they are conversing easily, and they are attracted to each other despite their age gap. Carol invites her to spend the Christmas holiday with her and her daughter Rindy. Everything is fine until Harge (Kyle Chandler) shows up saying he's taking Rindy with him on a business trip. When he sees Therese, he thinks Carol is up to her old tricks, as she used to have a relationship with her best friend Abby (Sarah Paulson). Carol is devastated when she learns that Harge is suing her for custody of their child due to a morality clause.

Therese's boy friend Richard (Jake Lacy) is upset with her because he wants her to go to France with him and get married. He tells her that her crush on Carol will fail when Carol grows tired of her. They break up. Carol invites her on a road trip in her 1952 Packard to escape the stress of the impending divorce. It is on this aimless travel that they bond and give in to their attraction. Unknown to them a P.I. hired by Harge is gathering evidence of their affair to use in court. Carol leaves Therese to return to New York and fight for her daughter in court. Heartbroken Therese refuses to take Carol's calls and pursues her dream of being a photographer at the New York Times.

Being in same sex relationships back in the 1950's was against the law in most places. Having the courage to live out of the closet was a brave choice and one that is not easy. Carol not wanting to drag Therese's name in the mud if the evidence is shown in a custody court trial is ready to compromise with Harge for their child's sake. And despite Therese's attempts to get over the affair, realizes that she needs Carol as much as Carol needs her. Love conquers all.
(Review by reesa)



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Sunday, December 27, 2015

Movies Scheduled 12/27/1/2

No movies this week as of right now.

I hope all of y'all are safe and sound from all the storms that came through last night!

I am looking forward to 2016!!

Stay safe during the New Year!!





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Friday, December 25, 2015

Joy




Opening:

I liked American Hustle but, ultimately, thought it was overrated. I like David O Russell as a filmmaker but I wasn’t really looking forward to Joy. However, I was pleasantly surprised…I liked it. Let’s get reel and break this down.

Plot:
Joy is the story of a family across four generations and the woman who rises to become founder and matriarch of a powerful family business dynasty.

Directing/Writing

Pros:

O Russell delivers a story with a strong, inspiring female character surrounded with the brutal honesty of how business works. The writing was sharp and constructed one of the best characters of the year. The tone was consistent and had the usual O Russell flair with the looks and cinematography of American Hustle, heart of Silver Linings Playbook, and sense of family of The Fighter. This is a nice combination of them.

Cons:
The way the film starts is kind of a weird introduction and it kind of made me worry, but honestly, after the hump of the first ten minutes I was locked into the characters and story. This didn’t really bother me but I need to mention that all the characters, besides Joy, are unlikeable. However, I can see why they are written that way; they are meant for motivation for Joy and it does add a sense of realism.

Acting

Pros:

This was the best character I have seen Jennifer Lawrence play in terms of character development and the overall arc. There was so much realism, drive, and humanity to this character that I thought I was watching a real life person. The supporting cast does a great job throughout the story, even though they are not necessarily likeable.

Cons:
None.

Cinematography

Pros:

The camera framing and movement from O Russell films are always kinetic adding to the excellent pace of the story and the film overall, and this film is no exception. He has a clear homage to Scorsese from his past two films and this is another one that is in that category.

Cons:
None.

Editing/Special Effects

Pros:

With its interesting story and main character and its fast paced cinematography, this film flies by and I found myself rooting for Joy throughout.

Cons:
The first ten minutes and the opening shot/scene are bumpy and a bit strange, but that is a minor complaint, even though I was worried when it opened with it.

Overall:
This is an engaging story of a strong, passionate character chasing her dreams and that is infectiously inspiring. This was a nice surprise and I would recommend it. Will it be in my top ten? No, but I am glad I enjoyed it as much as I did.

Grade: B+
(Review by Chase Lee






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Daddy's Home




Opening:

Daddy has come to your room and has informed you that he is leaving home and isn’t coming back. Kids, daddy ain’t home anymore. Buckle up; this is going to get rough. Let’s get reel and break this down.

Plot:

A mild-mannered radio executive strives to become the best stepdad to his wife’s two children, but complications ensue when their freewheeling and freeloading real father arrives, forcing him to compete for the affection of the kids.

Directing/Writing

Pros:

None…that’s not fair. There was one joke I smirked at, but if I had to make one complaint…

Cons:
The writing and the jokes are abysmal. They all seemed like the jokes that were at the bottom of a trashcan and some writer decided he could put them in a movie and try to get a sympathetic laugh out of the audience. 99% of the jokes are a miss. It’s a bland setup and execution with no creativity in the jokes and overall was confused tonally. The directing was about as lazy as you can imagine. The thing that bugged me the most is that the movie was battling with a PG rated family tone with hidden innuendos for the adults and slapstick for the kids and with a PG-13 rating that was littered with typical Ferrell humor. They should have made it PG and I would have respected it more.

Acting

Pros:
There was acting involved? Well, could have fooled me.

Cons:
It seemed like everyone was going through the motions and it looked like no one was really trying. This is weird for me to say because I liked Ferrell and Wahlberg’s chemistry in The Other Guys.


Cinematography

Pros:

This was shot on professional cameras from a studio? Well, could have fooled me.

Cons:
It’s got a sterile look to it, so I felt like I was watching the inside of a hospital.


Editing/Special Effects

Pros:

This movie had rhythm and a good pace to it? Well, could have fooled me.

Cons:
This was brutal to sit through and every time a joke was uttered a piece of my soul died.

Overall:
I just don’t get it. I like Will Ferrell and I even love some of his movies that make me laugh myself sick. But this was a rough year for Ferrell with this and Get Hard. This is in the top three worst comedies of the year with Vacation and Hot Tub Time Machine 2. The thing is my audience was laughing their butts off and I was definitely in the minority. The only reason this movie doesn’t completely fail for me was because I was in a coma while watching and one joke made me smirk.

Grade: D-

(Review by Chase Lee)





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Point Break






The 2015 issue and remake, Point Break, of the 1991 surfing film which originally starred Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeve, has kicked things up a substantial notch. Modern special effects and a myriad of amazing on location filming spots has made this action adventure flick a real visual treat. This one is not trying to base it success on a well known and seasoned cast. The film makers are pouring the entire budget into the massive special effects and moving the cast around the world. The locations where the action takes place are wide and varied and include Tahiti, Hawaii, Switzerland, Austria, Venezuela, Mexico, Italy and Germany. Aussie Luke Bracey stars as a newly recruited FBI agent Johnny Utah who quickly infiltrates a crime group who is flitting around the world mixing crimes that benefit mankind with X games style sport in pursuit of the elusive A stuntman's dream the pursuit incorporates sky-diving, free climbing, big-wave surfing, scuba diving, open dirt biking, and BASE jumping. The crime ring boss is a tuned- into- the- mystical anarchist named Bodhi who is played by Edgar Ramirez (the Swayze role). Beyond the pretty scenery and heart stopping stunts, there sadly isn't much more to satisfy a true lover of film. The script is full of holes and a little vapid, the acting carries the story but nothing more. Dialog is somewhat cheesy and approaches canine head tilting status as testosterone flows freely and male bonding and brotherhood rituals abound. The crime group is always too cool for school attitude while exposing mega muscles and tattoos everywhere they go and if one falls by the wayside then they have their own version of a Viking funeral. These criminals are not interested in keeping the spoils of the crime. Instead they want to complete the Ozaki Eight which is eight of death-defying challenges that honor the memory of Ozawki and pay tribute to the forces of nature. In the end, it is a nice visual escape from reality and rather fun globetrotting jaunt via the gorgeous cinematography.
(Review by Cheryl Wurtz)



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Concussion



It's hard to imagine that the so-called experts in the field of medicine hired by the National Football League would sign off on a report that athletes suffering head injuries on the field are not in any way seriously affected. Anyone who has ever had their “bell rung” knows that the brain is just sitting in your skull without protection. It doesn't take a medical profession to figure out the long term damage of this happening day in and day out to one's noggin is in effect a “no brainer”. Peter Landesman (Parkland) who wrote and directed this new feature based it on a GQ expose Game Brain by Jeanne Marie Laskas. The NFL management doesn't come off in a good light in this but have recently agreed to pay $765 million to settle a lawsuit brought by 4500 players alleging the NFL concealed the dangers of head traumas. And parents are now taking a closer look at their young kids on the field, as well they should.

Will Smith plays Dr. Bennet Omalu, a doctor from Nigeria with 7 different degrees and probably the brightest light in the room. In 2002 he works in the Coroner's office in Pittsburgh when he was brought the body of an ex-football legend Mike Webster who had committed suicide while living in his car. Dr. Omalu finds it a mystery as to why a perfectly healthy 50 year old man would pull out his teeth then super glue them back in his head. His department head wants Omalu to leave Webster's body quickly processed as he's considered a hero in Pittsburgh, so Omalu says he will pay for the testing on his own. What he finds leads him to other cases of ex-football players going bonkers and killing themselves. The tests on their brains all show the same symptoms. His boss Dr. Wecht (Albert Brooks) supports Omalu, but begins to worry when the NFL starts taking shots on them to stop his research.

Working through this medical mystery, Smith does a wonderful job of an immigrant who wants to be the best person he can be to become an American. He meets an Nigerian woman from his church, Prema Mutiso (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) who emotionally supports him through his struggles and eventually marries. Omalu publishes his findings and calls the syndrome chronic traumatic encephalopathy or CTE. He's supported by a former NFL team physician Dr. Julian Bailes (Alec Baldwin) who helps him present the information to the NFL's attempts to make it look like they are taking it seriously. It's not until three years later after Omalu is run out of town by threats to his boss and his family, that one players commits suicide donating his brain for CTE study, that Omalu work is finally justified.

Will sports in general lose those brutally violent elements if more attention is paid to protecting one's head from permanent damage? Football is not the only sport what batters the brain pan. There's MMA fighting and boxing, ice hockey, soccer, skiing, and any number of activities that your head can make contact by an irreversible and deadly force. This timely movie will hopefully bring awareness as to the price these athletes endure to entertain us.
(Review by reesa)



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The Big Short




The housing and credit bubble that collapsed in 2008 was obviously a huge financial crisis that brought down major banks. But unless you understand the complicated ins and outs of hedge funds and collateralized debt obligation (CDO), even with the amusing asides by celebrities to explain them, it's still gobbly gook to most people. Based on the book of the same name by Michael Lewis, it was directed by Adam McKay who also wrote the script with Charles Randolph. The story covers different key players in the creation of the Credit Default Swap market. Despite not being able to understand the intricacies of the math, it's still and exciting and fast moving tale that uncovers the greed and corruption in Wall Street that in a documentary form would have bored one in tears. This engaging big screen narrative makes it easier to digest so that people are made aware and hopefully forewarned should this ever happen again.

Christian Bale plays Dr. Michael Burry, an ex-neurologist who is blind in one eye, has Asperger's syndrome and created Scion Capital. He predicts the market is going to crash so he invests the company funds into the credit default swap. The banks are laughing while they agree to his terms and Burry's boss is livid. Others also get wind of the encroaching bubble burst including outspoken hedge fund manager Mark Baum (Steve Carell) who is informed by Deutsche Band trader Jared Vennett (Ryan Gosling) of the activity that is looming. They run the numbers and realize that they should also invest in the swaps. The two young founders of Cornwall Capital started their hedge fund in their Colorado garage and built it into the millions. They want a seat at the “big boy's table”, but are turned down, so they seek the help of a former neighbor who quit the financial world for a healthy life, Ben Rickert (Brad Pitt). They also realize that the predictions of a crash is coming and look to bet against the market.

Baum's team investigate in Florida the so called housing boom, and discover that mortgages are basically given out to anyone and everyone. Unscrupulous mortgage managers are making money hand over fist, while homeowners are defaulting on the loans. Baum is frightened and upset that the American dream is being destroyed by major financial institutions that bundle these mortgage loans and sell them. When things begin to fall apart, even the financial rating houses play as the banks want them in order to keep they business to keep the facade going. Burry is slowly loosing his investors as his swap scheme is still not paying as it should. All the short investors and hanging by their nails, until it all tumbles. They eventually get their profits, the banks close down and nobody but one person gets arrested for all the wanton fraud. Then banks gets bailed out by the American public and business still goes on as before.

This film will definitely challenge your brain, but it's well done, excellent performances.
(Review by reesa)



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Sunday, December 20, 2015

Movies Scheduled for the Week of 12/20/15-12/26/15



We only have one movie this week and nothing, so far, next week. Good chance to catch up on those that you missed. Especially this Christmas which is on a Friday with lots of films opening.

We here at Dallas Movie Screenings wish y'all a very merry holiday cheer!

Reesa, Daina, Chase, Cheryl, Wyatt, and Erin

December 20 - December 26

Sun
12/20

Mon
12/21

Concussion, 7:30 pm, Angelika Dallas and Cinemark 17

Tue
12/22

Wed
12/23

Thu
12/24

Fri
12/25

Merry Christmas

Sat
12/26








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Thursday, December 17, 2015

Sisters





Opening
Tina Fey and Amy Poehler are, arguably, two of the funniest women to ever walk to the earth. With that said, they are as believable as sisters as I am identical twins with Ryan Reynolds. I can’t see it. I will never see it. How was this movie and how come I am not reviewing the most highly anticipated movie, Roadkill 4, I mean, Alvin and the terrible-munks 4? Let’s get reel and break this down.

Plot
Two sisters decide to throw one last house party before their parents sell their family home.

Directing/Writing

Pros

This was a hit and miss comedy and I will say it was enjoyable enough to stick through and when the jokes hit, they hit hard. However…

Cons
…I felt like Jason Moore, director of Pitch Perfect, didn’t really add anything new and it felt like most generic R-rated comedies. There was a lack of risk being taken and it was all played safe, in terms of a raunchy comedy. Does he create an enjoyable environment with two leads that you could watch for days? Yes, he does. But it was very, very average. The writing, like I said in the pros, was hit and miss, but unfortunately for me, there were a bit more misses. This is also not the most extravagant story either and the structure was about as basic as you can get.

Acting

Pros

In the opening, I said Amy and Tina are two of the funniest women and I stand by that. They were ok. It’s weird to say because it’s their own film. I actually preferred the whole supporting cast more. From Ike Barinholtz, to Bobby Moynihan, to the always-hilarious Maya Rudolph, the supporting cast had all the good jokes and most of them killed and had me in stiches, particularly Bobby.

Cons
After thinking about it, I don’t see Tina Fey as the outspoken, rowdy child. Everything I have seen her in, I never thought about going against her type cast and there is a reason why, it didn’t work for me in this. I think Amy and Tina should have switched and have Amy as the rebel child and Tina as the studious one.


Cinematography

Pros

Comedies don’t particularly have groundbreaking cinematography and this is no exception. It’s shot well and there is nothing to complain about. If anything, all the party scenes in the movie were shot well enough to where I wanted to be there partying with these crazy characters.

Cons
None.

Editing/Special Effects

Pros
The party scenes are definitely the most fun part of the entire film and they fly by with jokes hitting from everywhere making the pace exponentially faster.

Cons
The beginning does kind of dragged with a desperation looming with raunchy jokes, and since most miss or they are simply trying too hard, it slows the movie down.

Overall
I know it seems like I am ragging on this movie, but honestly, with all the blandness and mediocre jokes, I would be lying to you if I told I didn’t enjoy this movie. I will watch anything with Tina and Amy because they are super talented and if it was anyone else involved with this project I wouldn’t have enjoyed it nearly as much. If you want to watch an enjoyable comedy this holiday season, I will recommend this and not another certain comedy I will be reviewing next week. This is also miles better than Tina and Amy’s last outing, Baby Mama. That movie was garbage

Grade: C







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The Danish Girl





It's complicated to say the least when dealing with telling the story of a real life transgender that is based on pseudo-biographical novel of the same by David Ebershoff. Screenwriter Lucinda Coxon worked on the script in 2004 which went through twenty drafts before director Tom Hopper (The King's Speech) chose an older version of the script. Considering the recent trend of LBGT issues making the headlines, it would seem this would be just a concept story, but there is a large emotional journey in the film that transcends even the most hard hearted movie goer. This is truly a love story.

Einar Wegener (Eddie Redmayne) is a renown landscape artist in Copenhagen in the early 1920's. His cold sterile pictures of trees that he constantly paints brings him uncomfortable acclaim. His portrait artist wife Gerda (Alicia Vikander) works just as hard, but doesn't get the recognition for her work. One day she asks Einar to pose for her as a substitute for her ballet dancer friend Oola (Amber Heard). He puts on the stockings and shoes, and that act itself opens a portal in Einar's psyche that he can't ignore. Soon he is wearing his wife's silky night gown under his suits. Greta who is totally devoted to Einar embraces her husband's new kink. When they are invited to a party that Einar is loathed to attend, they explore the idea of him going in disguise. They take some clothes from the ballet theater and dress Einar as a woman. Suddenly, Einar realizes what he is missing in his life. He is ready to explore this new revelation as Lili Elbe.

Greta begins to paint Lili in a series of portraits which sells very quickly bringing her fame and a chance to show her work in Paris. While they live and work in France, Einar has stopped his own work while exploring his alter ego Lili. His sexual identity confuses Einar and he seeks medical advice, with doctors wanting to commit him. Until he meets a doctor in Germany who understands him and Lili becomes the first recipient of male to female sex assignment surgery. Greta confused and upset by the loss of her husband, seeks solace and support from Einar's child hood friend Hans (Matthias Schoenaerts).

The story is told through the eyes of Greta for whom Alicia Vikander will probably get some accolades for her portrayal. She is more like the supportive husband in her relationship with Einar, who is more sensitive and delicate. Redmayne who won an Oscar for this role as Stephen Hawkings last year, does another amazing performance as the confused Einar/Lili. It's no doubt that it takes a strong person to come to terms with their sexual identity especially in those years. Lili's diaries have inspired many transgendered individuals over the years. This is just not a tale of being transgendered, it's the story of two soul mates who love each other unconditionally.
(Review by reesa)



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Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip





Ross Bagdasarian, the creator of the 1960's original animated TV series The Alvin Show, was the beginning of the tiny voiced characters Alvin and the Chipmunks. Since then the series has spawned a TV series until the 1990's, and numerous musical albums and since 2007 a series of now four live actions/CGI films. The latest adventure was written by Randi Mayem Singer and Adam Sztykiel and directed by Walt Becker (Old Dogs, Wild Hogs). It follows the 2011 Chipwrecked using the same voice actors. It's an expected kind of family values movie, lending the idea that families are families no matter who the kids and the parents are, as long as they are together. In this world of people with political correctness phobias, it's a less than subtle reminders that one should practice what they preach.

The mischievous Alvin (voiced by Justin Long) and his furry brothers Simon the brain (Matthew Gray Gubler) and cute innocent Theodore (Jesse McCartney) have quit touring as a musical act while their foster dad Dave (Jason Lee) peruses his writing and producing music. Their companion group, the Chippettes (Christina Applegate, Anna Faris and Kaley Cuoco) are still touring and recording. The boys are feeling at odds with Dave being so busy lately. So Dave takes them out to miniature golf where they meet the rude and mean Miles (Josh Green). It's no surprise that Miles just happens to be the son of Dave's new girlfriend Samantha (Kimberly Williams-Paisley). Dave tells the boys that Samantha may be the one. They even see a ring that Dave locks in his safe. Dave has to travel to Miami for the album debut of singer Ashley (Bella Thorne's). Miles is to stay with the chipmunks while his mom is with Dave for the weekend. Believing that Dave is going to propose to Samantha, the boys decide to work together in order to stop the engagement as they don't like each other and don't want to be family.

As with all Chipmunks movies, plans go awry. They manage to sneak aboard a plane in Miles' luggage, then after mayhem happens, they are kicked off in Austin, TX while earning the ire of the Sky Marshall played for all his worth by Tony Hale. The Marshall chases them from Austin, to New Orleans, then to Miami as the four bond through their adventures. We learn why Miles has some issues with abandonment and had made the Chipmunks feel insecure by suggesting that Dave will leave them if he gets together with his mom. Through it all, there are musical numbers, and slapstick chaos that will highly amuse most of the kids and parents alike, if you are into that sort of potty humor and so five minute ago pop culture references. It's a rentable kind of movie, but with the holiday's it will get you and the kids out of the house if there's nothing else to do.
(Review by reesa)



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Sunday, December 13, 2015

Movies Scheduled 12/13-12/19

It is finally here Star Wars week!! I have had a few people ask about a screening for it. From what I have been hearing there will be no screening of it. So that will be one you will have to pay to see.

Next week is Christmas, where has the year gone? Do you have all your gifts bought? I have just a couple of more and they will be just gift cards so pretty darn easy!

If you have any questions please email me at damitdaina@hotmail.com

Sunday Dec. 13th

Daddy's Home 3:00 p.m. AMC Northpark Cinemark West
IFC Free Screening: Life of Brian 4:00 p.m. Alamo Drafthouse


Monday Dec. 14th

The Danish Girl 7:30 p.m. The Magnolia


Tuesday Dec. 15th

The Big Short 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
Sisters TBA


Wednesday Dec. 16th

Point Break 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
The Big Short TBA


Thursday Dec. 17th


Friday Dec. 18th


Saturday Dec. 19th





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Thursday, December 10, 2015

In the Heart of the Sea



Charles Leavitt's screen play for the legend of Moby Dick approaches the subject for a different perspective. The hundred foot white whale that could destroy ships was a story told to scare the whalers who lived off the sea. In this story, Herman Melville comes to Nantucket, MA to seek out the last surviving member of the ill fated whaling ship, Essex, with which he turns into a classic piece of fiction we have come to know and love. Director Ron Howard, takes the viewer up close and personal on the ship, and the daily drudgery and uncertainty that comes with the whalers of the early 1800's. Howard is usually expected to elevate a project as he has done with other historical movies, like A Beautiful Mind, Frost/Nixon, and Rush. As beautiful as the well dressed sets and costumes, and performances, the movie seems a bit lost at sea.

Chris Hemsworth is Owen Chase, a son of a farmer who has managed to become a first mate on a whaling ship. He's hoping to be made captain on the next ship, but green hand George Pollard (Benjamin Walker) is given the position only because his father is an officer. Pollard is a bit insulted having to learn the ropes from someone who is obviously not of his class standards. The two men have agreed to try and get along, get their whale oil quota and come home early. They manage to get their first whale, but months later they are still circumventing the Atlantic to the Pacific via Cape Horn, with no other whales in site. They meet another captain while restocking their stores, who is still traumatized by his encounter with the biggest whale he has ever seen that caused the loss of his ship and crew. Chase, Pollard and Second Mate Matthew Joy (Cillian Murphy) only hear that there are tons of whales to be found and ignore the warning of the big creature.

The story is being relayed by Thomas Nickerson (Tom Holland), the cabin boy who was on his first whaling adventure. The older Thomas (Brendan Gleeson) has kept the story of what happened to the Essex and it's crew hidden away, chipping at this soul, until Melville (Ben Whishaw) shows up and manages to get him to talk as a way of excising his demons. Young Thomas hero worships Mr. Chase, especially after the Captain almost drowns the ship during a storm due to his inexperience and his insistence of trying to be more macho that Chase. When they do find the hundreds of whales thousands of miles from land, they think they have hit pay dirt. But the whales are being protected by the biggest baddest while whale of myth. The devastation of the ship, most of the crew, and the survivor's shipwrecked at sea for over 90 days takes most of the remaining movie.

Little bits of dialogue hit at what the whaling industry did to giants of the sea, until alternative sources of energy were found underground with the discovery of oil. Also the class attitudes of Captain Pollard are given brief and rote acknowledgement as the sign of the times, but also eventually gives up because there is no discrimination when it comes to life and death situations. The whale is impressive, but the CGI is not. The horrors the survivors endure makes one feel washed up at the end.
(Review by reesa)


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Macbeth




From the gate, Shakespeare's classic play is a major downer. Heavy duty treachery and craziness ensues. It's the one big dramatic role that actors can sink in their teeth and emote to their hearts content. For modern audiences, it has all the elements of a typical movie plot, but the Old English language of The Bard is difficult to understand so it limits who will actually spend money to see this film. Directed by Justin Kurzel, the screenplay was adapted to the movie format by Jacob Koskoff, Michael Lesslie and Todd Louiso. What sets this production apart is the amazing cinematography by Adam Arkspaw. The cold, desolate Scotland landscape, the fog, the rain, and mud is very visceral. The actors give it all it's worth, but the poor enunciation made it difficult to understand.

Michael Fassbender, who will most likely be nominated for Steve Jobs, gives an Oscar worthy consideration for his flawed Macbeth. Marion Cotillard will no doubt be considered for her manipulative Lady Macbeth. The beginning of the film has them mourning the loss of their child before Macbeth is off to the final battle of the civil war that has him fighting for King Duncan. After his victory, he is met by three mysterious women who foretell he is the “Thane of Cawdor” and future King. His first ally Banquo (Paddy Considine) will be a father of kings before they take off. Lady, hearing the news, lets greed and ambition encourage Macbeth to kill the king when he comes to visit, thus fulfilling the prophecy. Macbeth doesn't take out Malcolm, the King's son, and the young man flees to England thereby lending suspicion upon his absence. Macbeth, being the next in line is asked to become king.

King Macbeth is troubled by the fact that he has no heirs, and the words of the witches remind him that Banquo's son is likely to inherit the throne. Macbeth already feeling the guilt of his crimes, is slowing slipping off the handle, and has Banquo and his son killed, but the boy escapes. At the big dinner, Macbeth begins to hallucinate Banquo causing him to rave. Even the Lady has trouble keeping him from having a meltdown in front of everyone. Lord MacDuff (Sean Harris) and his wife leave and he has them escape the castle while he goes to England. Unfortunately, Macbeth tracks down the wife and kids who he puts to death by fire. By now, even Lady Macbeth is feeling the effects of their deed trying to wash out those damn spots from the daggers that killed the king. MacDuff swears vengeance on Macbeth for the loss of his family, bringing 10,000 English troops to the castle for the last showdown.

The battle scenes are slow-mo bloody and intense. It feels at times like Braveheart without the inspiring speeches. Fassbender is amazing as usual as the mad MacBeth and Cotillard is convincing as the power hungry spouse, but somewhere along the end, when things fall apart for them, it seems to lose momentum, where you know that only heart break and tragedy is the ultimate end. It maybe uneven, but it at least makes it less stiff and boring than a Masterpiece Theater production of the play.
(Review by reesa)





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Sunday, December 6, 2015

Movies Scheduled 12/6-12/12

So I have had a few people ask if there is going to be a screening for Star Wars. There isn't gong to be one. Remember they don't screen every movie! Sure we would like to not to have to pay for our movies but some of them we just got to shell out the money.

Make sure to keep a eye out for our emails on to grab passes. Yeah I know they go fast but there are some that come all on the same day.



I hope y'all have a great week!!

If you have any questions please feel free to email at damitdaina@hotmail.com


Sunday Dec. 6th

Big Fan Boy 11th Anniversary Party 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas

Monday Dec. 7th

AGFA Secret Screening 7:00 p.m. Alamo Drafthouse
MacBeth 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas


Tuesday Dec. 8th

In The Heart of The Sea 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark


Wednesday Dec. 9th

The Danish Girl 7:30 p.m. TBA


Thursday Dec. 10th


Friday Dec. 11th


Saturday Dec. 12

Alvin and The Chipmunks 10:00 a.m. Angelika Dallas




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Thursday, December 3, 2015

Chi-Raq




Plot:

A modern day adaptation of the ancient Greek play Lysistrata by Aristophanes, set against the backdrop of gang violence in Chicago.

Opening:

The newest Spike Lee joint in the Spike Lee joint collection, it is definitely one of the better ones in recent years even though I feel luke warm about the film overall. It’s definitely miles better than Oldboy. Oldboy is like that disappointing family member even though you know he is apart of the Spike Lee joint family.

Directing/Writing

Pros

What Spike does best is provide great social commentary of controversial subjects in the country and surrounds it in an entertaining story, this is no different. I appreciated the overall awareness and message bringing gang violence and violence in Chicago in general to light. The dialogue is presented in a rhyme and is set like a stage play, which makes sense since it is based on a play. However…

Cons

…I felt like the overall message was a tad bit drowning and it was just hitting me in the head to hard. Subtlety worked well in some scenes, but others, not so much. The rhyming dialogue is jarring in the beginning but won me over after. The very beginning was a bit too long for my taste and took a while to get going, even though I got the statement that was made.

Acting

Pros

Everyone does very well and I have to tip my hat to Nick Cannon. Believe it or not, the last thing I saw him in was Drumline. Oh yeah, remember that? I liked him in this role and had some real good acting towards the end, reminding us that he still has some acting chops. Teyonah Paris is the lead and she kills it and I can’t wait to see more with her in it.

Cons
None.

Cinematography

Pros

All of Spike’s films have a distinct visual flair, especially when set in a city, and this is dripping with that. The colors and characters pop with nice tracking shots with a few creative ones mixed in.

Cons
None.

Editing/Special Effects

Pros

As I mentioned, it takes a while to get into but the story overall interested me.

Cons
The messages that hit you over the head do slow the film down and makes you want to check your watch.

Overall

This is an ok film. I appreciate the awareness that Spike brings with gang violence and makes you want to do something about it, but subtlety wasn’t present. The acting and cinematography are very good and it is an entertaining story given the content, but it didn’t really garb me like I wanted to.

Grade: C+







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Star Wars the Force Awakens Celebration Opening





OUT-OF-THIS-GALAXY CELEBRATIONS FOR OPENING WEEKEND OF
THE FORCE AWAKENS AT ALAMO RICHARDSON
December 17-20, 2015


Featuring the 501st Legion, photo ops, the RSO string quartet performing live in the lobby, themed menu, limited edition exclusive merchandise, opening-day lobby party and more!


Richardson, TX — December 3, 2015 — The Force is strong with the Alamo Drafthouse opening weekend festivities for STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS!


Opening day—December 17—will feature an old-school lobby party kicking off during the day featuring the 501st Legion, DJ Darth Fader spinning intergalactic tunes, STAR WARS Battlefront demos presented by GameStop, new and vintage STAR WARS pop-up toy shop by The Lost Toys, Hop Solo Pint Night presented by No Label Brewing Co. in Glass Half Full and much more!


Appearances by the North Texas chapter of the 501st legion will occur throughout the day Thursday, as well as Friday through Sunday. Fans can have their pictures taken with all their favorite characters from a galaxy far, far away including Stormtroopers, Boba Fett, Darth Vader, Jedis, X-Wing Pilots, R2-D2, and BB-8 just to name a few! And they can do so with multiple photo ops in the lobby including a life-size replica of the Millennium Falcon cockpit, a life-size replica of Han Solo frozen in Carbonite, and a giant version of the STAR WARS Black Series action figure box (presented by the Credit Union of North Texas).


Featured throughout the weekend:

Appearances by the North Texas chapter of the 501st legion - Thursday through Sunday
Photo ops including:
Life-size replica of the Millennium Falcon cockpit
Life-size replica of Han Solo frozen in Carbonite
And a giant version of the STAR WARS Black Series action figure box
Richardson Symphony Orchestra quartet playing selections of the STAR WARS score live in the lobby - Saturday & Sunday 1:00p to 3:00p
New and vintage STAR WARS pop-up toy shop courtesy The Lost Toys - Thursday & Friday
Limited edition Mondo pint glass + BIRTH.MOVIES.DEATH double issue for purchase
Full themed menu of food and drink specials
Surprise special guest soon to be announced!



Ticketing Link: https://drafthouse.com/starwars/dfw



About Alamo Drafthouse Cinema:
Tim and Karrie League founded Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in 1997 as a single-screen mom and pop repertory theater in Austin. 17 years later, the now 19-location chain has been named "the best theater in America" by Entertainment Weekly and "the best theater in the world" by Wired. The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema has built a reputation as a movie lover's oasis not only by combining food and drink service with the movie-going experience, but also introducing unique programming and high-profile, star studded special events. Alamo Drafthouse Founder & CEO, Tim League, created Fantastic Fest, a world renowned film festival dubbed "The Geek Telluride" by Variety. Fantastic Fest showcases eight days of genre cinema from independents, international filmmakers and major Hollywood studios. The Alamo Drafthouse's collectible art gallery, Mondo, offers breathtaking, original products featuring designs from world-famous artists based on licenses for popular TV and Movie properties including Star Wars, Star Trek & Universal Monsters. The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema is expanding its brand in new and exciting ways, including Drafthouse Films which has garnered two Academy Award nominations in its short three year existence and Birth.Movies.Death, an entertainment news blog curated by veteran journalist Devin Faraci.








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Sunday, November 29, 2015

Movies Scheduled 11/29-12/5

Hope we all survived the Thanksgiving feast and the shopping spree of Black Friday. Are you ready for Cyber Monday? I know I am almost done with all my shopping!! So hard to believe 2015 is almost done!

Make sure to enter the contests and try to win passes before asking for passes. I know for me I look at the day and make sure I can make it before I even enter. Sure things come up and maybe at the last minute you can't make it but then you can offer them to the group.

If you have any questions please feel free to email me at damitdaina@hotmail.com.


Sunday Nov. 29th


Monday Nov. 30th

The Winters Tale 7:30 p.m. Cinemark 17


Tuesday Dec. 1st

Sisters 4:00 p.m. Cinemark West Plano
In The Heart of The Sea 7:00 p.m. AMC Movie Stub pass too many to list


Wednesday Dec. 2nd

In The Heart of The Sea 7:30 p.m. UA Galaxy


Thursday Dec. 3rd

Chi-Raq 7:30 p.m. AMC Village on the Parkway


Friday Dec. 4th


Saturday Dec. 5th







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Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Legend




The story of the notorious twin gangsters Reggie and Ronnie Kray was previously told in a 1990 movie called The Kray's . The colorful duo ran the underworld of London with their history of robberies, arson, protection rackets, assaults and murders. This new film directed and written by Brian Helgeland is based on the book by John Pearson, The Profession of Violence: The Rise and Fall of the Kray Twins. It centers on the relationship between the two brothers, Reggie's naive wife Francis and their fame in the 1960's. Tom Hardy who plays both brothers is what pulls this film together. His remarkable portrayal of two such diverse individuals is a fascinating study. It's unfortunate the uneven movie takes forever to tell the tale.

The Kray's were well known in their London East End neighborhood. In fact the Detective Superintendent Nipper Read (Christopher Eccleston) keeps a constant surveillance on their movements. Reggie even offers them tea while they sit in their car. Ronnie is currently residing in a mental hospital which Reggie manages to “lean” on the psychiatrist to give him a clean bill of health. The doctor advises that Ronnie take his medications to keep his paranoid schizophrenia in check. Ronnie loves the danger and the violence of being a gangster. The more the better. While his brother considers himself a bar owner. At least that is what he tells Francis Shea (Emily Browning) who he meets when she's 16 and married him when she was 22. It's her narration that tells how her attraction to the bad boys was the ruin of her life.

It's sometimes hard to get a handle on the thick accents and localisms. Everyone speak like they have cotton in their mouths. Reggie the obvious brains of the two manages to make a deal with American mafia in the casino business and some stolen bearer bonds. Life was good for the brother's during the 60's. They were celebrities with lords and ladies, socialites, show business personalities. When Reggie gets sent back to prison for a spell, Ronnie gets out of hand ruining the bar business and getting involved with a politician in homosexual scandal. Investigations of the Kray's hit the East End “wall of silence” when witnesses refused to testify.

The movie tells a more personal story of the brother's complicated family life. As angry as Reggie gets by his brother's psycho episodes, he can't help try and to take care of him. As much as Reggie seems to love Francis and tries to go straight in the business world for their future, he can't help fall back to what he knows best. Tom Hardy's Reggie is suave and charismatic, while his Ronnie is mentally unstable without verbal filters. The filmmakers handled their scenes together seamlessly it's hard not to think it's the same actor. The narrative by Francis doesn't seem to work that well as it limits the story to her domestic viewpoint. The uneven film is worth it just to indulge in the amazing work of the up and coming next big thing. Tom Hardy.
(Review by reesa)




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Creed




Just when you thought the whole Rocky franchise was over, a new character arises to lead another series of movies. Written and directed by Ryan Coogler and co-written by Aaron Covington the story follows the illegitimate progeny of Apollo Creed who died in the ring with Rocky Balboa. This is another energized boxing movie that doesn't hold any punches. The music swells at the appropriate moments and the fight scenes will keep you at the edge of your seat. The recent boxing movie Southpaw covered the dangers of concussion syndrome from taking one punch too many to the head. None of those realities are even mentioned in this movie to distract from the overall theme of an angry young man coming to terms and acceptance of his legacy.

Michael B. Jordan plays Adonis Johnson Creed who grew up in foster homes and taught himself to fight. He's taken in my Apollo's wife Mary Anne (Phylicia Rashad) and brought up with privilege and good education. Despite his financial office job, he still goes to Mexico to box, until one day, he decides to follow his dream. He goes to Philadelphia and looks up Rocky (still alive Sly Stallone) at his restaurant, claiming he kind of “owes” him. Rocky doesn't want to train the young man, but Donny Johnson as the name he goes by, wants to prove himself without the expectation of being Apollo's kid. Rocky gives him advice on training and sends him to another gym to get help. But Donny is, if nothing else, hard headed and persistent. He keeps up until eventually Rocky relents and trains him. This doesn't sit well with the father of another fighter who wanted to get Rocky to train his kid. Why would he come out of retirement for some no body out of LA, who they have nicked named “Hollywood”?

Of course that info of his identity comes out after Hollywood wins a fight. The pressure is on him to represent his father in the ring. The championship fighter in England Pretty Ricky Colan (Tony Bellew) has gotten into a scandal. His manager thinks by fighting Creed will give him some good publicity although Creed only has one major fight, not counting the ones in Mexico, under his belt. Cue the music as Creed begins to train in earnest. Despite the advice of Rocky, Creed still has lots of anger issues. His love interest Bianca (Tessa Thompson), a singer who is going deaf, inspires Creed to never look back and to do what he loves.

Michael B. Jordon who did so wonderfully in Fruitville Station is very buff and angsty as Creed/Johnson/Hollywood. Stallone can still hit the punching bag in rhythm and does a good Mr. Miyagi/Yoda trainer and life coach. The relationship between the two is credible and sometimes endearing when he calls Rocky “unc”. The photography puts you right in the ring with it's POV fighting. The action is way over the top than those Friday Night boxing TV shows, with some brutal sparring. This is a good Thanksgiving holiday movie that you can take the family for some old fashioned feel good manipulative movie magic.
(Review by reesa)




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Cooties DVD with Dallas Movie Screenings Quote





Dallas Movie Screenings writer Chase Lee's quote shows up on the back of the Cooties DVD sleeve! Way to go Chase!



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Sunday, November 22, 2015

Movies Scheduled 11/22-11/28

Thanksgiving week is here already. I am thankful for all of y'all, plus my family, friends and my job! If you aren't too stuffed on Friday and go out shopping please be careful! Some people are crazy!

Not a lot of movies this week so hopefully if you are not working then you can hang with family and friends!


If you have any questions please feel free to email at damitdaina@hotmail.com


Sunday Nov. 22


Monday Nov. 23

The Good Dinosaur 7:00 p.m. Cinemark 17 and AMC Northpark
Legend 7:30 p.m AMC Northpark
The Big Short 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas


Tuesday Nov. 24th

The Good Dinosaur 7:00 p.m. Cinemark Alliance


Wednesday Nov. 25th


Thursday Nov. 26th


Friday Nov. 27th


Saturday Nov. 28th





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Thursday, November 19, 2015

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2



It's finally over! The Suzanne Collin's trilogy of books published between 2008-2010 and made into four movies has finally concluded. The wildly successful young adult series with it's violent dystopia theme involving young people chosen from the 12 districts ruled by the Capitol to fight each other to the death. The purpose being it keeps the district in check and lets them know who is boss. There was a 13th district and they tried to rebel, so the games were initiated to remind everyone of their punishment. If you can buy that, then the rest of the story will be easier to swallow.

Directed once more by Francis Lawrence who did the last two films was written by Danny Strong and Peter Craig. It follows the events of Mockingjay Part 1, which was with all trilogies somehow managed to be stretched into another movie. Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) now the leading inspiration of the full scale revolution against the Capitol believes the only way to stop the madness is to kill President Snow (Donald Sutherland). She tries to leave the rebels on her own, but the Rebel President Coin (Julianne Moore) and Plutarch Heavensbee (Philip Seymour Hoffman) decide her idea will be controlled by them. They send a squad to accompany her with a film crew to show the face of the revolution fighting her way to the Capitol. The whole effort becomes a Hunger Games on steroids as the Capitol gamemasters have filled the city with mines, traps and nasty creatures underground. It's the perfect video game scenario as the team must move across the landscape avoiding capture. To make the story more interesting they send along Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) who has been brainwashed into believing that Katniss, his former fiancee, must be killed. This makes things uncomfortable for Gale (Liam Hemsworth) her other love interest. Katniss will eventually have to decide which one to choose in her Twilight-eque type of dilemma. Outside of this quandary of boring romantic partners, Katniss remains a solid female empowerment figurehead. The women in this alternate universe will hopefully inspire young women that they can also be strong, resourceful and tough. Jennifer Lawrence continues to prove that she is truly the next big thing.

Most of the cast from the other movies have a little moment or two like Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Stanley Tucci, Genna Malone, Sam Clafin, Natalie Dormer, Willow Shields, and Jeffery Wright. They seem to flutter by in a farewell sort of montage. The quick end to the eventual victory by the rebels seems to be somewhat anti-climatic if you are not familiar with the books. It's not a stand alone movie, which is why a marathon viewing of the other movies is necessary to understand the who, what where and why. But in all, it was a somewhat satisfying ending to franchise.
(Review by reesa)



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Secret in Their Eyes




The cast alone should be a drawing point for this new film based on the 2009 Argentinian Best Foreign Film Oscar winner of the same name and the book by Eduardo Sacheri called The Question in Their Eyes. Director and writer Billy Ray (Breach, Shattered Glass) changes a few things to accommodate and make it more current for American audiences. The original film was during the 1970's Argentina's Dirty Wars, while this one starts in 2002 while this country is still reeling from 9/11. The acting is of course expectantly accomplished considering the talent involved. It's wonderful to see Julia Roberts back on the screen even without any makeup. But the movie it self moves like a standard police procedural with some ill defined political slant.

Chiwetel Ejiofor plays Ray an FBI investigator attached to an LA counter terrorism unit. His partner is LA detective Jess (Julia Roberts) and the brand new DA assistant is Claire (Nicole Kidman). They are tasked with the job of watching a mosque for possible sleeper cells. Things go awry when a body is found in a dumpster in the building next door to the mosque. The team goes to check it out when Ray finds that the body is Jess's daughter. The movie goes back and forth in time beginning with Ray in present time finding what he believed was the prime suspect in the murder. He brings the information to Jess and Claire as he's no longer with the FBI having quit shortly after the events previously. For 12 years he's been scouring the face shoots of the thousands of faces in penal system to find the guy that got away.

Claire now the DA used to have a thing for Ray, and vice versa. She was engaged at the time and they never really resolved their relationship and it still lingers. Their unrequited love seems like a distraction in the scheme of things. Jess has also been promoted, but she looks even more worn and weary over the years. You can only tell Ray has aged by the gray in his hair. Which is one of the reasons the tossing back and forth between the decades makes the movie confusing. Chitwetel Ejiofor is intense and focused, Nicole Kidman is professional and somewhat distant, Jess used to be fun before the tragedy, but looks hollow and empty. Their performances are not to blame for the story which at times seems frustrating and depressing. It's obvious all characters are in need of closure in a case that has kept them in limbo all these years. But at what price?
(Review by reesa)




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By The Sea



The whole concept of watching a couple having a meltdown is a hard sell no matter what. If you want to see fighting just stay home with your spouse one night. The curiosity factor is the only thing left for this vanity project directed, written and produced by Angelina Jolie-Pitt which she stars with her husband Brad Pitt. It tries to be a 1970 French film with it's luxurious scenery, costumes, and lingering shots of angst. But in the end it's 2 hours of your life you can't get back.

Angelina and Brad play Vanessa and Roland who have come to this seaside village from New York City so he can write. Vanessa is all sorts of elegant and disconnected. The simple scene of Roland searching for a light for his cigarette in the car while driving, and she doesn't even help tells all about their relationship. Roland goes to the local cafe while he tries to find inspiration for his next book by asking people about how they fell in love. He makes friends from the cafe proprietor Michel (Niels Arestrup). Lots of conversations in French with subtitles about love and loss. Meanwhile Vanessa broods in their elegantly appointed hotel suite. She ventures outside to the local grocery store for fresh baguettes and an espresso machine. She wears long sleeve blouses, skirts and huge sunhats. Looking all glamourous and aloof. Most people smile at children, but nope, not her.

A young newly married couple move into the next apartment, Francios (Melvil Poupaud) and Lea (Melanie Laurent). Vanessa basically starts to stalk them when she discovers a peephole from their rooms to the one next door. It becomes an obsession. As Vanessa becomes increasingly distant from Roland, he begins to drink more and his writing block is stuck in place. Even more frustrating is when Vanessa accuses him of wanting the girl next door. Vanessa hinge is definitely loose as she tries to sabotage her marriage and maybe damage the young couple. It's tirelessly self involved.

At this point one begins to focus on the set decoration, the cars, the clothes, and those amazing false eyelashes. There's lots of nudity and any questions on how Angelina's post mastectomy body has turned out is finally answered. Any woman who has survived this will be envious of the results. The acting of course is superb as to be expected with remarkable actors. It's just a tediously relayed story that one is happy to see finally end, at least on a promising note.
(Review by reesa)



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Sunday, November 15, 2015

Movies Scheduled 11/15-11/21

I don't have extra movie passes and also have enter the contests or grab passes just like y'all do. If it is a movie on a work night or a movie I just don't want to see, I don't get passes. I let those who can get and want to see that movie. I don't mind people asking me questions but not asking me for passes. We send out emails letting y'all know how to get passes and sure you may miss out on the gabbing of passes but please try. Don't always ask for passes and if you do ask try to do it before the day of. We may be in line for the movie and unable to approve your email.

If you have any questions please email me at damitdaina@hotmail.com

Sunday Nov. 15th


Monday Nov. 16th

The Night Before 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark and Cinemark 17


Tuesday Nov. 17th

Hunger Games: Mockingjay part 2 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
Brooklyn 7:30 p.m. Magnolia
Asian Movie Madness:Vengeance of an Assassin 8:00 p.m. Alamo Drafthouse


Wednesday Nov. 18th

Sisters 7:30 p.m. Regal MacArthur
Creed 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark


Thursday Nov. 19th

Creed TBA


Friday Nov. 20th


Saturday Nov. 21st



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