Dallas Movie Screening

Dallas Movie Screenings started out as a mailing list on Yahoo Groups to facilitate finding free screening passes in the DFW area. When Yahoo Groups shut down, we are now posting screenings on our Facebook page at http://www..facebook.com/groups/dallasmoviescreenings
Earlier 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

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Movies Scheduled for the Week of May 31 - June 6, 2015

Welcome to June. Hope everyone arrived safely during those May storms and flooding. The summer is upon us and more movies are down the pike and will be more crowded as school lets out. Let's all try to be kind and helpful to our group members. There are plenty of contests out there generously providing us with free passes. Please don't be piggies and try to score more than you need, or can use for a particular night. There are ways of releasing those extra passes, so please do so. If the pass does not require an ID to redeem for a wristband, then please share with the group. Also, enter the contests!!! We are seeing the same names each week mooching for passes.

In the theaters, please don't sit in the reserved seats. Veteran group members know this, it's just a word to the newbies just joining us. The reps mark off seats for press, specific contest winners and other people of interest. The color of your wristband denotes that you are general admission, so please sit quickly. Don't crowd the stairs hovering for those unused seats. They will not be released until the very start of the movie. The reps will let you know if any are available.

And what is with the constant dialogue in the theater during the movie? You are not watching a DVD at home in you living room. Some people really want to hear what is going on. Not your take on it. Be polite and respectful of those around you.

May 31 - June 6

May 32

June 1

Entourage, 7:30 pm, AMC Northpark
Entourage, 7:30 pm, Studio Movie Grill Royal

June 2

Spy, 7:00 pm, Angelika Dallas

June 3

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, 7:00 pm, UA Fossil Creek Fort Worth
Insidious 3, 7:30 pm, AMC Northpark

June 4

June 5

June 6

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Thursday, May 28, 2015

San Andreas

Everyone loves a good disaster movie, even ones that don't involve sharks and tornadoes. Plus if it has Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson on board as the main hero, it's guaranteed box office fun to start the summer. Writer Carlton Cuse and director Brad Peyton (Journey 2: The Mysterious Island), offer a story with predictable dialogue and heavy on CGI mayhem. The April earthquake in Nepal that flattened many villages and cities leaving hundreds of thousands homeless, this movie will hopefully enlighten those living on the California coast, that building and populating areas on a major fault line is probably not a good idea. Neither is fracking in Texas.

The simplistic story line centers on Johnson as Ray Gaines who works as a LA Fire Department rescue helicopter pilot. The harrowing first scene has him rescue a young woman whose car went over a cliff and now dangles precariously on the side of a canyon. This is the first clue that the continuing movie means you should buckle in and enjoy the ride. Ray who is separated from his wife Emma (Carla Gugino) is having trouble accepting she is moving in with stupid rich boyfriend Daniel (Ioan Gruffudd) who is creating the tallest building in San Francisco. He's flying Ray and Emma's daughter Blake (Alexandra Daddario) to the bay city in his private plane with all sorts of reassurances that he's not trying to take her beloved fathers' place in her life. At the fancy building in SF she meets Ben (Hugo Johnson-Burt) and his little brother Ollie (Art Parkinson) as Ben his applying for a job with her new step dad to be.

Meanwhile at the California Institute of Technology, Lawrence (Paul Giamatti) and Dr. Kim Chung (Will Yun Lee) have discovered that their current research about earthquake swarms may be able to predict major quakes. While they gather information of an unknown fault on the Hoover Dam, the first big quake hits destroying the dam. Soon other major rumbles are set off along southern California and they are moving northward. With the help of reporter Serena (Archie Panjabi), he tries to get the word out through the media of the impending doom.

The film does impart some important information to those actually caught in an earthquake of “drop, cover and hold on” to protect oneself from falling or flying objects. That landlines will work when cellphones are out. And emergency preparedness along with a family communication plan for such events is something to think about in our own lives. The movie however suffers from an over abundance of spectacular destruction. But wait that's not all! There's a tsunami thrown in there for good measure. While millions of people are crushed, fall into crevasses, burned and drowned, we don't see their bodies as the story keeps us focused on Ray and Emma going to SF to save their daughter. Blake using her survival skills learned from her father, manages to impress Ben and Ollie as they try to find high ground for her father to come to rescue them. Girl power for having the young woman being the most resourceful.

Johnson does get a actual moment to display a little bit of dramatic angst while explaining the conflict that broke up his marriage. But the rest of the movie if filled with dumb forehead slapping verbal nonsense in between buildings falling over or errant shipping containers falling on the Golden Gate Bridge. It's a mindless adventure, that is both thrilling, fun and forgettable.
(Review by reesa)

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Sunday, May 24, 2015

Movies Scheduled 5/24-5/30

We have some new people and maybe some of the regulars that need a gentle reminder of the rules.

First of all you need passes for the movie. If after you have entered the contests or tried to nab passes and was unsuccessful then you can ask the group. Now don't just always ask the group but at least try to get passes on your own.

If there is a sign on the seat that says it is reserved don't sit in it until the promoters says it is cool to sit there. It isn't cool to plop your bootay in the seat if you don't see a good enough seat. They can and will kick your bootay out of the movie!

You have to get in line early to get a good seat. You can't just show up at 6 or 6:30 and expect a good seat or to be able to sit with your plus one! Just be happy if you get in.

If someone is holding seats for people that go get something to eat, trust that they will come back! Don't give their friend a hard time! Don't just assume they are lying to you!

Now when I say you can ask me a question, ask me questions. Saying you want this pass or that pass isn't a question. I am like y'all I have to enter the contests and jump through hoops just like y'all do. We do on occasion have passes but we will send out a email about that.

Last but not least don't freaking talk in the movie! You may think you are not loud but trust me you are!

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

Sunday May 24th

Monday May 25th

Tuesday May 26th

San Andreas &;00 p.m. AMC Northpark

Wednesday May 27th

Spy 7:30 p.m. Regal McArthur Irving
San Andreas 7:00 p.m. AMC Northpark

Thursday May 28th

Me Earl and the Dying Girl 7:30 p.m. SMG Spring Valley

Friday May 29th

Saturday May 30th

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Thursday, May 21, 2015


They're coming and They're here. It is hard to top a 1982 era Spielberg film but Sam Raimi and Gil Kenan sure want to try. They have enlisted the help of Sam Rockwell (his usually comic quippy self) is Eric Bowen and modern mom RoseMarie De Witt is wife Amy. Kyle Catlett, Saxon Sharbino and cutie pie Kennedi Clements are the kids - Griffin, Kendra and Madison (Maddie). Jared Harris is Carrigan, the House Cleaner, straight off of reality TV, accompanied by ex wife Dr. Claire Powell (Jane Adams) and her two helpers. It is often felt that the casts of classic films cannot be easily replaced but this cast tries hard and does a pretty good job. Sam Rockwell is engaging and Kennedi is engaging as the chubby cheeked youngest family member who holds the interest of the souls under the house.

The family moves in to their new house, but we soon discover dad is jobless and the credit cards are maxed out, true to the economic of the day. The kids want their old house back and Griffin has nervous and anxiety issues. The 2015 kids are a little bit mouthier, a little more disrespectful and much more plugged into technology. The TV is a large flat screen and electrical surges fry the cell phones and IPads. The original Poltergeist was new and original, full of creative ideas and imagination, packed chock full of classic scenes and lines. Many of those carry over in tweaked form. Obviously taking place in modern day, a toy drone makes an appearance and the ghostbusters have some amped up technology. The clowns are back and have multiplied. A demon squirrel has appeared. The tree is in constant waving view overhead and does some pretty cool things thanks to CGI and the pool has been replaced by the homes very foundation. While there are a few jumps and quick screams, most will not judge the movie as scary, mainly due to the predictability of the story. Offered in 3-D, it really doesn't make great use of the technology in ways that it could have (think room with objects flying- could have been AMAZING- here, not so much) Relatively short at 1 hour 33, the rising action moves little too quickly for this reviewers taste. Chaos break loose the first night the parents are out on a dinner date. Just not enough quick, creative and creepy goings on to satisfy the ultimate climax of the story. The HELP comes in quickly and doesn't ever seem to get really settled in over a period of time. The scares and viewer anticipation of them is just different enough on this outing that one does remain interested and a little on edge. The original moved the family through innocent occasional observations, a deepening interest and fascination with the entities and their antics, to concern to fear and finally all out terror.....plus a hint of a continuation. Those transitions are not quite as apparent in this rendition and the hidden credits scene takes it off a different direction. The family seems a little too calm, taking it all in, in fact Dad never really seems all that scared, panicked or upset. The only remote freak out is a short one from mom and of course kids when getting attacked by the tree, the foundation and the closet. It is just so odd that all this stuff is happening in the house by the creepy old tree and no one is ever outside watching things going down. The neighborhood just seems deserted with no body home. Guess everyone is hanging out underground, as we found out during the dinner.
(Review by Cheryl Wurtz)

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Good Kill

Ethan Hawke is on point as 6 tour seasoned but now grounded pilot, Major Thomas Egan, assigned to fly drones in Afganistan from a remote Las Vegas Nevada air force compound. Day after day, teams of three sit in metal boxes on concrete slabs full of the latest modern technological warfare equipment, waging war on the Taliban. He meets a new partner, Airman Vera Suarez (Zoe Kravitz), who has little experience in the game but is up for the challenges that are built into the job. Ethan has a wife and kids and seems to enjoy being a family man with a house on the outskirts of Vegas. Wife Molly (January Jones), a former Vegas dancer turned mom, loves her husband but notices him distancing from the family as the ethical questions surrounding what he does for a living begin to weigh him down. She really doesn't have very much of an idea what he does, exactly but knows he is becoming tortured.

His job is to keep watch on goings on, help protect troops on the ground, gather information and occasionally blow some folks off the planet as his direct superior orders. They follow strict protocols and procedures and take great care not to harm innocent victims. It is all very antiseptic and cold, overall, until his team is tapped to work with the CIA. The drones are precise, can zoom in, zoom back and spy on all sorts of activity up close an personal, and some of it is really unpleasant and borders on a voyeurism that snaps the crews back to reality.
Unfortunately the CIA does not base its bombing targets on hard facts. Often the agency orders kills on "best information', which is not reliable, and innocents and children are sometimes taken out as well.

Filmed in Morocco and New Mexico amid stark landscapes in 2014, the star is the cinematography. As the lines blur as to what it really takes to do this job (video gamer vs seasoned, highly trained pilot) the film brings to the forefront plenty of questions for viewer general discussion.

Can hiding behind technology take the morality out of killing during wartime? How does seeing the aftermath of what one has directly done affect a serviceman over time? It is not hard to believe that the film is based on actual events. The tension is palpable and the dilemmas rolling around in their minds are painful to consider as we imagine what we would do in those chairs, taking blind orders to kill from one to fifty at a time. They say Good Kill on completion of each bombing yet ask themselves it a war crime was committed after a certain strike. They are clearly uncomfortable doing the CIA's bidding over speaker phone. The film possesses some great visuals and intelligent dialogue that all can follow.

As Major Egan struggles, he becomes a little brooding, a little psychotic and quite a bit anxious and towards the end, has some serious personal choices to make. It is a difficult situation that begs the viewer to put themselves in his place and ask the hard questions.
(Review by Cheryl Wurtz)

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Slow West

Imagine being a kid, you have your favorite stuffed platypus named Earl and you are about to go to bed. You have everything in place except another human mouth to sit next to you and read you a bedtime story. You have one of your parents read you a great western fable and describe all the graphic violence in detail. This movie came off a violent bedtime story and I highly enjoyed it.

As a first time full-length feature Writer/Director, John Maclean gives us a slow (pun intended, I am surprised I didn’t use this in the first sentence) fantasy feel to the western genre and feels different and definitely a breath of fresh air for this genre. How is it unique? Well, the style and color palette. It’s as if Wes Anderson stumbled into a bar late at night, drank a lot of wine, took home a drunken cowboy, had a colorful one-night stand filled with great set design and nine months later, made Slow West. That’s not a knock (ed) up on it because I loved the visual aesthetic and really gave the story a voice. With that said, I do believe this was also a short, semi-rushed, story with some under-developed characters and random plot points thrown in so they can tie up everything at the end. The biggest thing is that it’s only an hour and fifteen minute movie. It felt rushed as if Maclean had nothing else for the characters and had to end it as fast as possible. There were some character attributes that I really enjoyed for the most part; I just didn’t feel any weight when certain things would happen because I felt like I didn’t know them that well.

The acting is actually very strong and everyone gives a very good performance in their respective characters. Michael Fassbender is always great in everything he is in and this is no exception. He is a very convincing cowboy and can pull off that gruff, mysterious element that most cowboy characters have in westerns. That’s right ladies, if you combined this character and his character in Shame, you will have a hell of a stripper for your bachelorette party. I felt like Fassbender had the most development out of everyone, which is weird because not much is really given about his character, but I could kind of see his past and what his personality is just by his performance. Kodi Smit-McPhee (I actually remembered how to spell that and not look it up and that’s ok if you don’t want to believe me) does well for what he is given. I kind wish I knew more about his past, but the conclusion of his character makes sense given the traits and philosophies of his character. Ben Mendelsohn is always great in everything he is in, but his character felt under-used and under-developed. That makes me cry on the inside because he is a very versatile actor like Mr. Michael “Cowboy” Fassbender and there wasn’t really anything for him to do. The other plyer in this cast is Caren Pistorious and her character suffered like Mendelsohn did. Her character was fine and had a purpose, but it was under-developed and I felt like I didn’t know her well enough. It’s like if you took the hottest chick to prom because you were physically attracted to her, but you realize you know nothing about her and you two just don’t click and now all you have is an awkward dance partner and you wish you were watching movies instead. If you are wondering why that analogy is so descriptive it’s because that actually happened to me. I would have watched a movie about prom than experience it.

The cinematography is another plus. Every shot was like a beautiful, vibrant painting you would see at one of those western shops in a mall somewhere. I live in Texas and I see these all the time. It was simply gorgeous and really added a cool contrast from all the bloody, brutal violence. Kind of how it was back in the day, beautiful scenery but is clouded with disgusting animalistic behavior that really shows what humans are like. The pace is fine. Now, it’s a very short film and my one complaint on that is I wish it was longer (something that will never be said about a Michael Bay film). I wish there more scenes, more character development and more beautiful scenery. It’s a slow movie, but the curiosity on how it is going to end will intrigue you as it did for me.

I love a good western and, despite some of the problems I listed above, this is a great breath of fresh air on the western genre and Fassbender needs to play another cowboy because he killed it in this role. I recommend this one. 7.5/10
(Review by Chase Lee)

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Good Kill

I will watch anything with Ethan Hawke in it, but this one felt flat and didn’t really explore its interesting premise. I can’t believe this was written and directed by the same guy who has written one of my favorite movies of all time, The Truman Show. Well, then again he also wrote and directed one of the worst films of 2013, The Host.

Director/Writer Andrew Niccol explores, or at least tries to, what happens to pilots in the military and how they were once the heroes in the air to heroes in a chair operating a drone hundred’s of miles away. They do say, “Chair Force”, so that was pretty clever; and that’s where the cleverness ends. That’s pretty interesting, right? Exploring a pilot who has been flying for years and is now reduced to the equivalent to some guy playing Call of Duty in his basement eating Cheetos and drinking Mountain Dew is pretty intriguing. I am that guy who he is equivalent to and I can say that’s pretty much accurate, except I drink Mountain Dew: Code Red because I like living on the edge like that. You can think of the toll it will take on a seasoned pilot and how it can affect his psyche. They don’t explore any of that and really just scratch the surface. Not to mention, it’s really repetitive. It’s literally scenes of Hawke’s home life and scenes of when he is in the giant tin box in the middle of the dessert playing Battlefield. I wouldn’t mind that, but it’s boring and uninspired. I felt there wasn’t any creativity put into the scenes and the actors were just there reciting lines. Andrew also explores the violent, grotesque nature of the Middle East and how some people are awful, committing rape and whatnot really fueling Ethan Hawke and his motivations. He also touches on government take over with the drones, but once again, it feels rushed and under developed. Great ideas at play, just not explored enough.

Let’s jump into the acting, kids! Listen I love the Hawke (that sounds like a crappy hairdo from the 90’s) but this was a misstep for him. His character wasn’t fully developed and he felt one-note with some characteristics that come out of nowhere with no explanation or real depth. Speaking of flat, boring performances, January Jones doesn’t add much to the film. She felt like she was there and some of the decisions she made, that could be justified, made her look like a bad person. Listen, January is attractive and she shares her name with my birth month, I am pretty sure that means we are soulmates and I am ok with that, but I haven’t accepted her as a good actress yet. I know all of you are probably yelling at your computer screen, which would be awkward if someone came in right now and saw you yelling, to watch Mad Men. Whenever I feel like slicking my hair back, grabbing a cigar and drink some Scotch, I will watch Mad Men; but here she hasn’t proven it to me or the other film roles she is in. I thought she was enjoyable in The Last Man on Earth and that’s where I draw the line. She always seems to have the same tone and personality in every character she has played. Zoe Kravitz is also in this film and she does well. I have nothing more for her character.

The cinematography is clean and nice to look at but nothing ground-breaking. With story getting repetitive, the shots also seem repetitive in a few scenes involving the drone pilot area. The editing was an issue as well. I felt like the whole film was disjointed and scenes would just end. It felt choppier than a lumberjack and beaver having a contest on who could chop more wood. It’s a terrible analogy and joke, but I am about as funny as a joke on a Laffy Taffy wrapper so that’s what you get. Despite all the choppy editing, the movie just ends abruptly. That’s how it felt to me.

Mr. Niccol, if you read this, please don’t hate me, even though I will be on your hit list now, I really do respect most of your work. I love The Truman Show so much; but I felt like this was a bland, under-developed, repetitive, idea that could have worked and been a great modern war film. I really can’t recommend it. I have seen worse movies, but this one I didn’t care for at all. 2/10
(Review by Chase Lee)

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When Disneyland in Anaheim opened the futuristic section of the theme park called Tomorrowland it reflected the 1950's vision of world possibilities that included smooth sleek monorails and rocket ships. In the new Disney movie of the same name director Brad Bird (Mission Impossible-Ghost Protocol and The Incredibles) which he co-wrote with Damon Lindelof, that vision is still intact for an alternate universe where all good things can live, grow and expand gloriously. But that world is set for doom, because the pessimistic world view has infected it like a virus and only something like positivity can set it right again. A simplistic Disney fairy tale notion set with rocket packs and robots.

The story begins at the 1964 World's Fair in New York City. A young farm kid Frank (Thomas Robinson) who just happens to be a boy genius has taken the bus with his rocket pack made from Electro-lux vacuum cleaners which he shows to David Nix (Hugh Laurie) who is in charge of assessing new inventions. David, impressed by his ingenuity, is put off when he learns it doesn't quite work as well as Frank expected. However, David's daughter Athena (Raffey Cassidy) is intrigued by Frank and slips him a small pin with the letter T on it, and encourages him to follow those selected by David into the Small World ride. That ride takes him to a place totally unexpected.

Flash forward and we meet Casey Newton (Britt Robertson) who is trying to sabotage the destruction of the NASA launchpad that will put her scientific engineer father out of work. (Disney movie = no mother). Casey obviously brilliant and knows how things work, but still ends up getting caught in the act of her civil terrorism. When she gets out jail by her dad, she finds a T-pin in her belongings. It's been keyed to her DNA. When she touches it she is transported to Tomorrowland. But no one can see it but her. Unfortunately the pin expires it's program, so she looks on the Internet to find another. Which is a cool memorabilia shop called Blast From the Past. But what she finds there is not exactly what she expected. Enter Athena, still young, who helps her, leading her to Frank (George Clooney).

From this point the movie picks up speed. Frank who had been exiled from Tomorrowland and now living as a grizzled old crank, still mad at Athena for whom he once crushed on way back when. Casey finds out that she be the potential savior of Tomorrowland. Athena has selected her as a new recruit for the Plus Ultra's, a secret group of artists and other gifted and smart who created Tomorrowland. Frank, reluctantly concedes that Casey's presence may have changed the odds of the ultimate world disaster. Now they have to get to Tomorrowland to try and fix it.

The gobbly-gook of explanations regarding the Plus Ultra's, and the establishment of the alternate universe will be lost on most people, which is probably fine, because Frank's gadget filled house and the rocket in the Eiffel Tower, all the while being chased by robots are totally fun and distracting from all that scientific mumbo jumbo. Tomorrowland itself is full of wonders, but it looks like a super clean subway station, or some new Frisco super mall. A souped up modernization of Disneyland in the 50's. Clooney plays Clooney with his typical dry wry wit. And Brit Robertson is panicky and perky. It's Raffey Cassidy who steels the movie as Athena.

The lesson the movie seems to try to impart is that negativity kills and the power of hope and love endures. So keep that in mind while watching this film and just have a good time. Don't think about top hard.
(Review by reesa)

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Sunday, May 17, 2015

Movies Scheduled 5/17-5/23

When you are at the movies and security asks you to turn your phone off, please do so! You may think that if you mute the light it won't bother anyone. Well you are wrong. We want everyone to enjoy the movie!

Please know that you always need a pass! On some movies they have been checking IDs so don't be shocked if your name isn't on the list that you don't get in.

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

Sunday May 17th

Monday May 18th

The Good Kill 7:30 p.m. LOOK Cinema
Tomorrowland 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark and Cinemark West Plano
Me Earl and the Dying Girl 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas

Tuesday May 19th

San Andreas 1:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
Tomorrowland 7:30 p.m. AMC Valley View
Asian Movie Madness: A Better Tomorrow 7:30 p.m. Alamo Drafthouse

Wednesday May 20th

Spy 7:30 p.m. Cinemark 17 and SMG Royal
Entourage 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark

Thursday May 21st

Poltergeist 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas

Friday May 22nd

Saturday May 23rd

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Thursday, May 14, 2015

Mad Max: Fury Road

It's hard to imagine that there's a whole generation who have not experienced the original Road Warrior with Mel Gibson. The writer and director George Miller is back with an update to that scenario including the epic tricked out truck and car chase across a stark forbidding landscape. Filming took place mostly in Namibia and the breathtaking cinematography was done by John Seale who came out of retirement to shoot the film. This is visually popping eye candy treat with intense action sequences, minimal dialogue, heavy on the angst and uber violence.

In the year 2060, civilization has fallen, nature has become a wasteland, water has become a premium. Trying to survive is Max (Tom Hardy), a former highway patrolman who lost his family in the beginning of the collapse. He's captured by a group lead by a tyrannical fascist leader, Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne) who runs the War Boys with promises of taking them with him to Valhalla. Women are treated like chattel, being kept pregnant and milked. Water is parsed out to the survivors, and Joe controls that too. Captive Max is used as a blood bank, having a universal blood type, which they tattoo on his back. Nux (Nicholas Hoult) is transferring Max's blood supply in his veins, when he hears that Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron), the one armed driver of their war tanker truck has taken a wrong turn and not heading to the gas supply depot. That's because Furiosa has taken the Joe's Five Wives whp hope to be taken to the Green Land where they will not be used as womb slaves.

Max is hooked up to the front of Nux's car with a Bane type mask and chains while continue pumping blood. The chase is on across the desert for the tough, no holds barred Furiosa. After some hellacious action moments, Max manages to get free of his captors, although he has to bring an unconscious Nux along as he's still chained to him. Joining with Furiosa has some moments of distrust, but eventually they realize in order to survive and get away from Joe and his War Boys and the other factions who have joined the chase means they must cooperate. Max and Furiosa both prove to be competent and unflinching road warriors.

The story seems to be less about Max and more about Furiosa and the women who populate this world. For hardcore fans of the original franchise this may not sit well, but for today’s more enlightened mindset it would be more apropos. Theron plays a wonderfully unique character and Tom Hardy does Mel Gibson's Max a run for the money. The action shots are mind boggling and fun, the violence is what to expect without being too bloody and horrific. It's a rip roaring adventure, with incredible costumes, makeup and set decoration. The stunts will have you edge of your seat. But when it's all said and done, nothing can outdo the first Road Warrior film. Maybe a good reason the visit the original 1981 film and how it influenced all the apocalyptic stories that followed.
(Review by reesa)

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Pitch Perfect 2

Ok, pitches, the all woman acapella group for the fictional Barden University are back with another Glee-ful adventure. Directed by Elizabeth Banks and written by Kay Cannon, the story occurs three years later. The Barden Bellas have won the National Championships every year since then. This is the senior year for most of the Bella's so if they plan to continue this franchise, they will have to replace the cast, or have them come back for some reason like they did with Glee. And you know how that worked.

Banks does double duty working in her debut directing job and also playing podcaster Gail Abernathy-McKadden with the offensive John Smith (John Michael Higgens). Their tasteless, sexist, and racist commentary while live broadcasting the acapella performances are uncomfortably amusing. We are supposed to accept it and not be offended, right? But frankly the comments are cringe worthy. The opening scene is a ridiculous costume malfunction involving Fat Amy (Rebel Wilson) that causes the Bellas to become suspended from the rest of their performance schedule. They are being replaced by the European champions Das Sound Machine, a German group led by Flula Borg as Pieter Krämer and Birgitte Hjort Sørensen as Kommissar. Their group is all military precise and flawless. The only chance for the Bellas to get back their glory is to compete in the World Acapella Championships, and the Das Sound Machine would be the ones to beat.

Entering into the new mix is Hailee Steinfeld as Emily Junk. Her mother Katherine (Katey Sagal) was once a Bella, so Emily is let into the Bellas as a legacy. She trains with the group, but the women are at their lowest at the moment. It's hard for them to find their sound and harmony. Becca (Anna Kendrick) has started a new intern job at a sound studio with Keegan-Michael Kee as her boss who is making a Christmas album with Snoop Dogg. Fat Amy is having a fling with former TrebleMaker singer Bumper Allen (Adam DeVine) and Benji (Ben Platt) is all sorts of stupid in love with Emily. The high strung Chloe (Brittany Snow) suggests they go on a retreat to try and find their sound again after their disastrous performance at a private Riff-Off party of a rich acapella fanboy (David Cross).

There's a lot of characters in mix that add little side dialogue during major scenes. The wonderful Lilly (Hana Mae Lee) and her whispered comments and Flo (Chrissie Fit), an illegal Guatemalan who drops some woeful life experiences of her own. Everyone gets their little moments which is all fine and good, but makes the movie sort of frantic and aca-noying. Its the vocal performances are what will make this another hit. So if you love Glee, you will enjoy this!
(Review by reesa)

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Sunday, May 10, 2015

Movies Scheduled 5/10-5/16

Happy Mother's Day y'all!

I hope y'all are staying safe in this crazy spring weather we are having!

Make sure you are looking at the date on the pass. Don't get multiple passes for the same date and think oh I will just get in the shortest line. That means someone who wanted to see the movie couldn't get a pass! We want everyone to get to have a chance to see the movie they want.

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

Sunday May 10th

Monday May 11th

FUNimation At The Movies: PUCHIM@S! 7:30 p.m. Alamo Drafthouse
AGFA Secret Screening 7:30 p.m. Alamo Drafthouse

Tuesday May 12th

Pitch Perfect 2 7:30 p.m. TBA
Mad Max: Fury Road 7:30 p.m. Cinemark 17
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl 7:30 p.m. Movie Tavern Denton

Wednesday May 13th

Pitch Perfect 2 7:30 p.m. SMG Royal
Mad Max: Fury Road 7:30 p.m. AMCC Northpark

Thursday May 14th

Friday May 15th

Saturday May 16th

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Thursday, May 7, 2015

The D Train

The more I thought about this movie, the more I hated it. I love Jack Black and James Marsden, but this was a miss for both. I think where the problem lies is within the way it’s written and the way the characters are written.

Directors Andrew Mogel and Jarrad Paul craft, what seems to be a buddy comedy, into something where the characters are unlikable, dumb and naive, and didn't buy into the decisions they were making. Dan, played by Black, is a normal man who has a family, kids and a cozy job. He is also a committee member of a group of high school kids he graduated with to get all of their classmates to join their twenty year reunion. Dan is an outcast and isn't really respected. I can understand that because I have witnessed that in my own life. Dan is home one night and sees a commercial for Banana Boat with Oliver Lawless, played by Marsden, as the spokesperson. Lawless graduated with Dan and was one of the most popular kids in the class. Dan goes back to the committee members and suggests that if he gets Oliver then a lot more people will register for the reunion. So, Dan fakes a business trip to Los Angeles to his boss, played by Jeffrey Tambor, with Tambor tagging along to meet a potential client, but Dan is flying to L.A. to meet Oliver to convince him to come to the reunion.

There are some things that happen in L.A. that really put this obsessed Dan into high gear. I won’t spoil anything, in case you want to see it, but essentially, Dan does anything with Oliver to convince him…like do cocaine. It’s stuff like this that makes Dan very unlikable. Throughout the movie he is so obsessed with Oliver that it’s a complete turn-off and I was wondering why? If it was a ten-year reunion, I could understand. But since this is a twenty-year, you are 38, obsessed with a classmate you haven’t talked with for twenty years. You are doing drugs, gambling your job for what, a reunion weekend with a classmate? I just hated Dan and his extreme obsession with this guy. It made no sense with everything at stake like that. Also, he ignoring his family and his older son doesn't help his cause either. I could understand drinking with him and trying to be buddies with him, but going to these extremes, for a reunion? Nope. Oliver is also written as a D-Bag and I didn't care for him either.

Kathryn Hahn, who I absolutely love, plays Dan’s wife and she is a bit oblivious for a few scenes and her character is more likable at the end when I sympathize with her, but other than that, she is just there to feel bad for at the very end. Jeffrey Tambor’s Bill is also clueless throughout most of the movie and when Dan reveals that the business trip is fake, you feel bad for Bill and he even suggest to Dan on how to have avoided this whole situation with his job and could have gotten a plane ride out there for the weekend, instead of burning company expenditures. Wow, so you could have avoided getting fired, and your boss tells you how to not get fired. OK.

The thing about the story that makes me madder is that the ending has Dan way worse off than the beginning of the film and he didn't learn anything. There is a speech at the end with Dan on Facebook typing a “heartfelt” message saying, “Be you. There’s a little Oliver Lawless inside all of us, waiting to get out.” Sure. So, be a party animal and totally negate anything in your life like your family, job and friends? Once again, you are 38. These are a few problems I had with the movie and there are many more, but I know there are people out there wanting to see this, so I will let you experience this D Train wreck yourself.

The acting is fine and everyone does well for what they are given. The cinematography is clean and it’s well lit and shot, so nothing to complain about. The pace of this movie became much slower as soon as Dan started making bad decision after bad decision. I can feel the movie come to a grinding halt. The soundtrack was cool and I will give it a point for that and the acting. Maybe I am in the minority, because everyone around me loved it. I don’t know, but what I can tell is that it didn't work for me. 2/10.
(Review by Chase Lee)

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Hot Pursuit

Buddy road movies depend heavily on the chemistry of the two lead actors who are usually polar opposites to beef up the differences and possibly the humor. In director Anne Fletcher's (The Guilt Trip, The Proposal, 27 Dresses) new film written by David Feeney and John Quaintance, the unlikely pairing is Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara. The movie relies on running jokes that have to do with age, height and facial hair. Despite the hectic pacing of the film trying to milk out laughs from almost slapstick moments, the endearing relationship of the women is what saves this from being totally annoying.

Witherspoon plays Cooper, an OCD cop who wants to live up to her late police father's excellent reputation. She works in the property room after she caused a fire on someone from her taser. Her boss Captain Emmett (John Carroll Lynch) assigns her to accompany Dallas Federal Marshall Detective Jackson (Richard T. Jones) to deliver witnesses to court to testify against Vicente Cortez (Joaquin Cosio), a major drug lord. She is needed to chaperone Daniella Riva (Sofia Vergara). Their first meeting establishes their differences of style, size, and attitudes right away as Riva is packing her stiletto shoes that she refuses to leave behind. Two separate gunman break into the house and start shooting Riva's husband and the Marshall, leaving Cooper without her gun or radio. She manages to get Riva out of the house by taking the red convertible in their garage and making a run for it. Soon they discover that Cooper has been suspected of shooting Mr. Riva and the Marshall and is on the lam with Mrs. Riva.

Thus begins the road portion of the movie as they have to change clothes, fight, bicker, and save each other from being caught by dirty cops and drug lord hench men. All the while Riva is wearing high heels, tight clothes and dragging around a suitcase full of shoes. They have girly moments talking about Cooper's lack of love life and the death of Riva's brother. They try to distract a cowboy into thinking they are lesbian veterinarians before he shoots off his finger. They encounter Randy (Robert Kazinsky) sleeping in the back of a truck they had stolen who finds Cooper fascinating and helps them out as they try to make their way to Dallas avoiding road block checks.

It's a noisy movie. The two leads are funny and comfortable with each other and Riva's throw away comments about Cooper are sometimes hilarious. It's an easy movie to kill an afternoon and you don't want to wait for it on Netflix. Or you can go watch Avengers again.
(Review by reesa)

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Sunday, May 3, 2015

Movies Scheduled 5/3-5/10

Make sure you try to get passes and not just ask for passes! Yes we see the same person over and over asking for passes!

Only two days of movies this week but lots of movies on those two days. Which movie will you see?

Don't forget Mother's day next Sunday!

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

Sunday May 3rd

Monday May 4th

Tuesday May 5th

Mad Max: Fury Road 7:00 p.m. AMC Northpark
The D Train 7:30 p.m. Angelika Dallas
Pitch Perfect 2 7:30 AMC Northpark
Far From The Madding Crown 7:30 p.m. Magnolia

Wednesday May 6th

Bravetown 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
Hot Pursuit 7:30 p.m. AMC Northpark
Hot Pursuit 7:30 p.m. Cinemark 17

Thursday May 7th

Friday May 8th

Saturday May 9th

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