Movie Ratings are on a scale of 1-5. I tend to start at a 5 star rating and deduct things based on content, plot, photography/direction, and acting. Anything rated over 3 stars and is in bold, which means I enjoyed it and would probably recommend it or watch it again. (5 star ratings are very rare with me)! – Content is listed for those who are careful about what they or their children view (or what to be aware of)]
Paddington 2015 (w/ Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Madeleine Harris, Nicole Kidman, Peter Capaldi, Julie Walters, & voice of Ben Wishaw) 3.75 stars – As a child, I loved Paddington the cartoon, though I had never read the book. I even had a nightie when I was a child with Paddington on it. He was a sweet bear who always looked like he was ready to face any downpour. When I saw the teaser trailer for this movie, I was so excited. We saw this in theatres as a family. The boys loved it and so did we as adults. I actually felt I could relate to the mother in many ways (such as coming up with strange names to call my children). Paddington is a Peruvian bear who travels to London because of an explorer who visited his Aunt and Uncle years earlier and taught them how to make marmalade and other things. Paddington meets a kind family and tries to learn about life in London. This causes many mishaps. There is a woman who seems interested in him and hopes to capture him. It was cute to see Peter Capaldi in this too (who is the current Doctor in Doctor Who). I did not know he was going to be in it. If you are a Harry Potter fan, Mrs. Weasley is in this too.
content: cross-dressing (though the scene was not obscene and was funny though a man did flirt with the man thinking it he was a she), tight fitted clothing on a woman shown, A taxidermist is shown with animals that had been collected – most were one-of-a-kind animals, a character dies (not shown but assumed), a woman tries to get a man drunk as a distraction (so there is drinking and drunkenness in this)
Invasion of the Body Snatchers 1978 (w/ Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, Jeff Goldblum, Veronica Cartwright, Leonard Nimoy) – 3 stars – I just found out this is a remake of a fifties film, so now I want to see the original, because I don’t tend to like remakes too much. This version of the film had great graphics for a “horror” flick, and I know I don’t watch too many of those types of movies at all, but alas, here I am. I have heard about the title for many years and thought it was a b-flick that was terrible (in my head before seeing the movie). Now that I saw it, I was actually really impressed. Many things in it were very realistic and the way it was filmed was really great too. The story is about an alien plant that comes to take over the earth and a woman notices that something is happening to her boyfriend. She goes to her co-worker friend for help to figure out why her boyfriend has changed so drastically. In the process they both start to discover much more than they bargained for. Definitely an interesting story. My only big problem with it is that content made it worse (so I would have had a higher rating for it). What a let down. This movie ALMOST made it through without nudity.
content: a large man gets up from a mud bath and you can see the very bottom half of his bum and a little. . . bit of his scrotum, a woman is shown covered in a weird fiber that looks like breasts for a second without any nipples, a man is shown with blood dripping down his head after a hit and run, a man is shown stabbed in the neck with a dart, in the last 14 minutes of the movie a woman is shown topless and walking around a building (top portion only shown), kissing, a man axes a person’s head (it isn’t a person though, but looks like one). . . this actually looks very realistic and it does have blood, some scary imagery throughout (the whole concept of this movie is unique and freaky), a man’s nose bleeds, the use of speed pills shown, language: small “b” word
To the Beautiful You 2010 (Korean TV show) – 3 stars – An Olympic gold medalist high jumper goes to an all boys’ school and has a hard time jumping again afterwards. A girl who admired the Olympian decides to go to his school as if she is a boy so she can help him jump again. This leads to interesting situations throughout the show. I enjoyed this one a bit, though not as much as I have enjoyed other Korean dramas. I think that some of what happens seems realistic and some of it not so much. The girl did not look much like a guy to me at all and I don’t know how that would fool anyone especially for as long as it did. The only guy who won’t go swimming and never shares the same locker room with them while they are inside of it. . . is very suspicious and easy to figure out!
content: girls shown in a towel a few times, guys’ chests seen throughout the show, people dressed in drag, kissing, deceit, a guy shown with a pretty busted up bloody nose, a guy has a crush on the girl who is pretending to be a boy the whole time thinking he may be homosexual because of it and has a hard time with that throughout – even though he has a crush on an actual girl though there is a guy who does have an actual crush on another guy throughout this as well, talk about people being porn addicts or perverts (people show magazines being held but they never show what is on the covers), a guy puts his palms on a girl’s chest and her chest is all wrapped up to make it seem like she is a guy so he gets fooled, guys shown sitting on toilets, people try to harm others, punching, a girl is in a dangerous situation that may cause sexual assault, a boy and a girl share a bedroom together (never any sexual stuff happening there), some language in it like the “s” word
The Signal 2014 (w/ Brenton Thwaites, Olivia Cooke, Laurence Fishburne, Beau Knapp) – 3 stars – I would have rated this higher but unfortunately because a girl was shown in underwear, it missed getting a higher mark. This however, was a very strange and thought provoking film that left me going, “WHAT?” at times but leaving me so intrigued. You have a couple of hackers and the girlfriend of one of them on a search for a Nomad who has been hacking them at MIT. In their search they end up finding themselves in some strange facility and are told they have a sickness of some sort. It was truly so interesting to try to figure out what was going on. Laurence Fishburne of course pulls out his Morpheus-like role again, but at the same time it is very different too. My husband didn’t see the underwear scene but outside of that he LOVED this film so much. This is one of those films where I want to explain the plot but that could give too much away. I actually watched this “blind” as my husband called it. He wanted to see it and didn’t tell me what it was going to be about and so I started watching it not knowing the plot, and I think that worked out for the best. The beginning was confusing and a little boring to me and I didn’t understand it. It seemed like some teens just traveling around but then when they reach a certain destination and something occurs that changes everything, I was hooked. There was just one thing that seemed out of place (with a cow) that didn’t make sense, but you’ll see what I mean.
content: A scene where a person’s body flies in the sky making them look “rag-doll-like”, A girl is shown standing in front of two men with her butt cheeks hanging out of her underwear for a few seconds before she walks away (totally didn’t need this in the movie too because it didn’t go with the rest of it at all), blood shown at various times mainly dripping out of people’s noses, disturbing imagery that might be scary, people get shot by guns and die, kissing, immodesty, language: (“s” word a few times, “f” word once, God’s name used blasphemously, “d” word, misuse of “hell”)
The Identical 2014 (w/ Blake Rayne, Ray Liotta, Erin Cottrell, Seth Green, Ashley Judd, Joe Pantoliano,) – 3.25 stars – This is a movie about a boy who was separated by his twin brother at birth and raised as a pastor’s son, though always having a calling towards singing and music even though his father wants him to be a “man of the cloth.” This story focuses on what his life is like and how he is searching for himself while relating to a top singer. This is set in the 1950s and yes, the guy looks and sounds a little like Elvis too. It was a good movie regardless of the slight cheesiness in the actual songs not sounding too much like their time (that’s the only issue I had). Definitely a Christian film and seemed to have been made by Messianics (Jewish believers of Christ). I of course loved Ray Liotta’s acting best. Overall the message is well revealed and inspiring.
content: a couple of women shown in old-style bikinis briefly, people drinking (no drunkenness shown), people shown smoking, immodesty
Salmon Fishing in the Yemen 2011 (w/ Ewan McGregor, Emily Blunt, Amr Waked, Rachael Stirling, Kristin Scott Thomas, Tom Mison) – 2.25 stars – In the desert of Yemen, fishing is definitely not common, but apparently it was so in the past before the waters dried up. A sheik wants to bring it back and he wants fisheries experts from Great Britain to help him bring this to a reality, but most of the people from Yemen are not too happy with him. The main subjects of the story are Fred Jones, who is an expert in fisheries and Harriet who has hired him and is working along side of him to fulfill this dream for the Sheikh. Harriet’s boyfriend is a soldier who is about to go off to Afghanistan and Fred’s been married to his own wife since he was young and she wants to go off for a few months to do what she wants to do, which saddens him because he wants a child. Since Harriet and Fred do business together, they are around each other a lot when they are going through their hard times and build a friendship. I didn’t really find the story to mesh well and Kristin Scott Thomas’ character seems like an angry selfish woman in her scenes and she swears most of the time as she works for the press in regards to the Prime Minister. Harriet (Emily Blunt) definitely shows the best acting to me in this film especially as she grieves over missing her boyfriend. The Sheikh actually is the most likable person in this whole movie and I really like how his friendship with Dr. Jones built well.
content: a man mentions being married to several women, kissing, assassination attempts, a man gets a wound on his cheek with blood showing, a married couple are shown in bed with the man on top (both are shown wearing clothes and are under the covers) though the man thanks his wife for allowing them to have sex (he does moan as the scene comes in), a woman takes off her pants and is shown wearing underwear and she climbs quickly into bed (panties barely shown but her entire leg is definitely exposed), people shown making out and we can figure out that they had sex (nothing shown at all), immodesty, a quick TV channel sequence shown where a pop star is in underwear, a man’s neck gets snapped, smoking shown, drinking shown without drunkenness, language: (short “b” word used in plural, long “b” word, “f” word used once vocally and a few times typed out, God’s name used blasphemously and one included with the “d” word, “bloody” used a lot (it is a British film), “hell” used incorrectly, “a” word used several times, Jesus’ name used improperly 2x)
Kiss Them For Me 1957 ( w/ Cary Grant, Leif Erickson, Jayne Mansfield, Suzy Parker, Ray Waltson, Larry Blyden) – 3 stars – In 1944, three men who are Naval officers decide they need a leave once finishing their tour. They each are considered war heroes. One of them can’t wait to become a part of the government, another has had his share of war and can’t wait to just be away from it. The last one just pretty much follows them around as a loyal friend. Of course this is right before the Pearl Harbor bombing, so they just are out to have fun in San Francisco. While having a party in their hotel, Cary Grant’s character is out for drunkenness and girls, but finds one who seems so interesting and beautiful (Suzy Parker). I think her acting was terrible. She was so emotionless at times. I couldn’t stand it. Of course Jayne Mansfield is treated like a sex object as usual, which is always sad. They make her out to be dumb though in ways she is very smart and I wish they cared a bit more about that because she actually acts really well in this. Cary Grant is always grand in his acting and shows his comedic humor. I think the story for this was very sad. It showed a lot of the mentality of those who serve in war and how varied they can be. It was quite interesting to see.
content: a man talks about how much he loves his wife while he is willing to kiss another woman who says he can think of his wife while kissing her, two women quickly compare bust sizes, lust, immodesty, smoking, lots of drinking and drunkenness shown, kissing and making out (though of course their kisses aren’t as deep and intense as these days show in films), talk about going to an apartment (sex assumed though nothing shown at all), punching, war footage shown of planes blowing up in the air, language: the “d” word
New Hope 2012 (w/ Ben Davies, Samuel Davis, Dodie Brown, Perry Frost, Will Schwab) – 2.75 stars – Another Christian film where the pastor somehow always has a poetic monologue and all the answers without many actual problems. It is actually a little frustrating and annoying and unrealistic. A family moves to a new town where a kid recently committed suicide (a year earlier). The kids in the school are picking up the pieces still as well as the family of the boy who did it. He was a teenager and even had a brother whom he was very close to who is not coping well. The new family that moved is a pastor and his wife and two kids. His son is going to join the basketball team and he shows an interest in a girl there who doesn’t seem to be a believer of God and who was the girlfriend of the deceased boy. So many people have this way of looking at him as if because he is the pastor’s son he is a good example at all times. It was definitely one of those faith films that was pretty good other than things here and there. It wasn’t terrible like a lot of other movies I’ve seen in this genre.
content: a girl is interested in sex and hands her boyfriend a condom, talk about suicide, fighting, underage drinking and smoking shown, mocking people (for faith and in general)
Big Star: Nothing Can Hurt Me 2012 (documentary) – 3.25 stars – I have known about Big Star for only a few years now and truly enjoy their music. I was excited to see a documentary about them. Basically their band tried to make it big in the early 1970s, but they were not getting known no matter how may reviews were put out about how amazing their music was. This saddened the one who started the band in Memphis and wrote the majority of the music named Chris Bell and shows the struggle he had since the failure of the release. The other members of the band tried to continue to hold on. The band only released three albums but they have a great cult following of fans. Also this focuses a lot of Alex Chilton in the band too. We learn a lot about the studio in which they recorded at too. I think the only downside I had about this documentary is that we didn’t actually learn much about who each member was and where they came from. Two of the members are dead now, and while they explained a little how one died, they didn’t mention at all about how the other one died. I figure it was to protect him, but it was strange. This documentary definitely is good but the story is pretty sad. I liked how it was done though. Of course what did not make sense to me is that this documentary was finished after a third member of the band died of cancer but that wasn’t even mentioned which is odd to me. Now there is only one surviving band member.
content: some language (About 3 or 4 words), talk about drugs and videos of people who are most likely high at times, people shown with alcohol and shown smoking cigarettes throughout, drunkenness talked about, talk about Jesus, some immodesty shown, people shown kissing, talk of death