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)]
The Company You Keep, 2012 (w/ Robert Redford, Shia LeBeouf, Julie Christie, Susan Sarandon, Stanley Tucci, Terrence Howard, Sam Elliott, Brendan Gleeson, Richard Jenkins, Anna Kendrick, Brit Marling, Nick Nolte, Chris Cooper) – 3.5 stars – I kept thinking about this film for a couple of days after watching it. There were a load of people in this film and I will say it was nice to see a newer film with Robert Redford and Julie Christie (I have reviewed a few of their films in the past). Shia LeBeouf did a wonderful job playing a journalist who ends up finding a deep interest in a story about a peace movement group known as the Watchmen during the anti-war revolution of the sixties and seventies. In 1980 they killed a person which went against what they stood for. One of the women who was a part of the group decides to get caught which brings up the search of finding those who were involved in the murder. Robert Redford’s character is the main suspect and the hunt goes out for him. All he wants to do is protect his 11 year old daughter. Shia LeBeouf’s character tries to find out the real story behind those who were involved in the crime. Definitely a good film. I think they went a whole hour before a bad word even came out (and I think they could have avoided much of the language throughout the film). The story is riveting.
content: old clips of news reels that show bombings and violence (no gore), insinuated sex between two unmarried people as you see a man in bed without a shirt on and a woman who seems to be dressed in a robe of sorts already out of bed and awake, talk about drugs, talk about murder, packaged drugs shown being transported, people drinking (no drunkenness), language (several “f” & “s” words, a few misuses of God’s name, “hell” used incorrectly, “d” word, full and short “a” word used a few times)
Cross Creek, 1983 (w/ Mary Steenburgen, Peter Coyote, Alfred Woodard, Rip Torn, Dana Hill, Joanna Miles, Cary Guffey, Ike Eisenmann, Malcolm McDowell) – 2 stars – I’m sorry but this was just very boring. Woman author Marjorie Kinnan Rawling formerly known as a reporter decides to write about British high society life of sorts and moves to the Florida bayou. While there she learns about the people around her and enjoys their stories and company. She starts to write about them instead after her book fails. This film is about her time there to write the widely acclaimed book “The Yearling”. The acting wasn’t bad or anything, I was just truly bored and felt like I wasted my time. It was just strange in a way. This was actually nominated for an academy award somehow. The scenery was beautiful!
content: although we never see sex it is mentioned that people are sleeping together when unmarried, drinking and drunkenness shown, animals are shot (non-graphically), long “b” word, “d” word, God’s name used blasphemously
Speedway, 1968 (w/ Elvis Presley, Nancy Sinatra, Bill Bixby, Gale Gordon, William Schallert) – 3.25 stars – A lot of Elvis movies don’t make me happy because they always demean women, but here we have a strong female role in Nancy Sinatra which was good. Elvis is a race car driver who’s best friend is his manager who takes care of the financial part. His friend however was not properly taking care of his tax claims and so his “charitable contributions” are pretty kind but are unnoticed. When the IRS comes after him, Elvis wants to make things right (sometimes with use of songs). This was a cute story. I thought it enjoyable. The songs were good too.
content: kissing, a man tries to lure in women sometimes through manipulation to get them to stay with him but usually he doesn’t win out, some immodesty (go-go dancers), smoking, fight scene, drinking (drunkenness is shown)
Jack and the Cuckoo-Clock Heart, 2013 (animated w/ voices of Orlando Seale, Samantha Barks, Harry Sadeghi, Stephane Cornicard, Jessie Buckley, Sophia Ellis) – 3 stars – This was a French movie (though spoken in English throughout). It was very strange but very interesting. The imagery and story might be a bit frightening and so I don’t recommend it for children at all, honestly. For instance, a baby is born and his heart is so cold that he might die so an operation is done so that he has a heart of a cuckoo-clock instead. It was a bit crazy when I saw it and I cringed while watching! Jack is told a few rules throughout his life to live by and one of them is that he must never fall in love because it will end up killing him. He sees a girl that comes to town with a circus and he grows weak but thinks about her for a few years and wants to find her no matter what. It was unique but so sad! The animation was really neat. There is singing in this too but some of the songs weren’t that good in my opinion, while a few were very lovely. Overall this is a dark faierytale.
content: scary imagery, a woman abandons a child, a bully is quite intense with how he treats the main character where he nearly kills him, fight scenes, blood shown, Jack the ripper shows up in one part and talks about slicing girls and he is shown with a knife, amusement ride with disturbing scenes in it, chain smoking woman shown, talk about a girl “riding a cowboy”, someone drinks tears, kissing, a girl gets scared or reacts when excited as well by having thorns growing on her body and vines – this can be sexual or non-sexual depending on the scene, female immodesty throughout (little skirts and cleavage shown), death
After Earth, 2013 (w/ Will Smith, Jaden Smith, Sophie Okonedo, Zoë Kravitz) – 3.25 stars – Set in the future, a father and husband is ahead of the military and is admired by many for his heroic fights against an alien nation that had destroyed earth at one point. People don’t live on earth any longer, but on another planet. The son of this man has a lot of pressure and has always longed to be close to his dad and be like him. He just wants his father to be proud of him. He admits he is weak but has to prove himself when his father’s life is in danger. This film may seem kinda slow to a lot of viewers because it is quiet at times, but I think it shows realism as to how it would really be if it truly happened. When I first saw the trailer for this I thought it only had two people in it and I had no idea about what it was going to be about. It was very different than what I suspected it to be and very rewarding. There seems to be a strange created accent though that is in this that was the only annoying part, but you figure if in the future we didn’t live on earth anymore and had groups of people on a new planet, we’d have new accents.
content: some gore from a nasty wound, cleavage shown, people being wounded and killed by aliens (wasn’t graphic, was more shadowy, and blood was shown later), language: (“d” word, God’s name being used but more in a “help me” type of way than in a wrong way)
The Fountainhead, 1949 (w/ Gary Cooper, Patricia Neal, Raymond Massey,Kent Smith, Robert Douglas) – 3 stars – This movie had some awesome parts in it and some freakish weird parts at other times, but I did not read the book in which it comes from (the screenplay was written by the author as well, so I assume it is the same). Howard Rourke is an architect who no one seems to want to hire because his ideas are not similar to ones that are common. He wants to continue on with his work his way, rather than do his work the way people tell him he should (this whole part of the film’s basic plot I enjoyed). There is a woman who works for a newspaper company and writes articles who happens to feel nothing at all. She has never been in love and wants to just be free. She meets the architect, not knowing who he is yet for certain and somehow can’t stop thinking about it (the relationship part of this film is very strange to me, honestly). The plot thickens as it goes on with drama and sad occurrences. It was extremely well acted regardless and the way it was filmed was incredible too.
content: smoking, drinking (no drunkenness), kissing, a man gets a whiplash (blood shown), a man is scratched (blood shown), suicide by gun (not shown but they make sure you know what it happening), a person cuts themselves with glass, a woman is in bed and has much cleavage that at first makes it seem like she is naked but she is wearing a revealing nightgown
Interstellar, 2014 (w/ Matthew McConaughey, Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway, Wes Bentley, Casey Affleck, John Lithgow, Matt Damon) – 3.25 stars – A very strange movie that started out pretty normal until nearly the end. My husband is a big 2001: Space Odyssey fan and it reminded him of it, so he didn’t like it as much as I did simply because he felt it was less unique than it could have been. They start it out as if it were a documentary but go into the story behind it all. The world is dying out because it is covered in dust and there seems to be little hope for the future of mankind. McConaughey plays a man who cares for his family but was formerly an astronaut who has to take up his role in finding a place where mankind can live. His daughter takes it extremely hard and while in space, he receives a few messages from his kids. His daughter continually gets strange messages that she says is from a ghost throughout the movie and her father shrugs it off but she continues to believe in them as she ages. The story focuses also on the relationship McConaughey makes with his co-worker in space who is played by Hathaway. The acting was superb by all. It was intriguing and thought provoking.
content: kissing, murder attempts, people die due to space issues mainly or just from old age or due to the environment, language: (a couple “f” words, a few “s” words, long and short “a” words, short “b” word)