Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Tag: Jennifer Lawrence

Red Sparrow (2018)

Title: Red Sparrow
Rating: R
Directed by: Francis Lawrence
Written by: Justin Haythe
Based on the novel by: Jason Matthews
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Joel Edgerton, Matthias Schoenaerts, Charlotte Rampling, Mary-Louise Parker, and Jeremy Irons
Release Date: 3/2/2018
Running Time: 139 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

What did you think of this film?
Dominika Egorova is many things.
A devoted daughter determined to protect her mother at all costs.
A prima ballerina whose ferocity has pushed her body and mind to the absolute limit.
A master of seductive and manipulative combat.

When she suffers a career-ending injury, Dominika and her mother are facing a bleak and uncertain future. That is why she finds herself manipulated into becoming the newest recruit for Sparrow School, a secret intelligence service that trains exceptional young people like her to use their bodies and minds as weapons. After enduring the perverse and sadistic training process, she emerges as the most dangerous Sparrow the program has ever produced. Dominika must now reconcile the person she was with the power she now commands, with her own life and everyone she cares about at risk, including an American CIA agent who tries to convince her he is the only person she can trust.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? No

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

Special thanks to Emmy, and Cameron for this submission


Mother! (2017)

Title: Mother!
Rating: R
Directed by: Darren Aronofsky
Written by: Darren Aronofsky
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Ed Harris, and Michelle Pfeiffer
Release Date: 9/15/2017
Running Time: 121 minutes

Official Facebook
IMDb

What did you think of this film?
A couple’s relationship is tested when uninvited guests arrive at their home, disrupting their tranquil existence.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? No

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

Note: there are some creepy scratching noises and scrapes that show up on the sides of the credits.


Passengers (2016)

Title: Passengers
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: Morten Tyldum
Written by: Jon Spaihts
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Chris Pratt, Michael Sheen, Laurence Fishburne and Andy Garcia
Release Date: 12/21/2016
Running Time: 116 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

What did you think of this film?
A story about two passengers who are on a 120-year journey to another planet when their hibernation pods wake them 90 years too early. Jim and Aurora are forced to unravel the mystery behind the malfunction as the ship teeters on the brink of collapse, with the lives of thousands of passengers in jeopardy.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? No

Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

Note: 3D space themed scene scapes are shown during the first half of the credits.

Was seeing Passengers in 3D worth the cost?

X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)*

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Title: X-Men: Apocalypse
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: Bryan Singer
Written by: Simon Kinberg, Bryan Singer, Michael Dougherty and Dan Harris
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Oscar Isaac, Olivia Munn, Michael Fassbender, Evan Peters, Sophie Turner, Nicholas Hoult, Rose Byrne, James McAvoy, Tye Sheridan, Monique Ganderton, Alexandra Shipp, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Lucas Till, Lana Condor and Stan Lee
Release Date: 5/27/2016
Running Time: 144 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

Following his acclaimed work on X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST, director Bryan Singer takes the franchise to new heights with X-MEN: APOCALYPSE, in which the X-Men battle the original and most powerful mutant — Apocalypse. In 1983, the invincible and immortal Apocalypse is set free after being entombed for several millennia. Enraged that his kind are no longer treated as gods, Apocalypse assembles a team of powerful mutants, including a disheartened Magneto, to destroy humankind and create a new world order, over which he will reign. To end Apocalypse’s path of global destruction, Raven (Jennifer Lawrence) and Professor X (James McAvoy) lead a team of young X-Men in an epic showdown with a seemingly unstoppable enemy.


During Credits? No

After Credits? Yes

Click to see whats: after the credits

Special thanks to Ivan A. for this submission

Was seeing X-Men: Apocalypse in 3D worth the cost?

Beautiful Planet, A (2016)

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Title: A Beautiful Planet
Rating: G
Directed by: Toni Myers
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence
Release Date: 4/29/2016
Running Time: 45 minutes

Official Site
IMDb
Buy on Amazon

A Beautiful Planet is a breathtaking portrait of Earth from space, providing a unique perspective and increased understanding of our planet and galaxy as never seen before. Made in cooperation with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the film features stunning footage of our magnificent blue planet — and the effects humanity has had on it over time — captured by the astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS). From space, Earth blazes at night with the electric intensity of human expansion — a direct visualization of our changing world. But it is within our power to protect the planet. As we continue to explore and gain knowledge of our galaxy, we also develop a deeper connection to the place we all call home.


What did you think of this film?

During Credits? No

After Credits? No


Joy Review – 4.5 out of 5 Stars

JoyPoster
David O. Russell is a very divisive filmmaker. For every person like me who considered American Hustle this brilliant, energetic experience, there was someone who found the movie sloppy, arrogant and generic. These people aren’t necessarily wrong but his latest movie Joy (seemingly his most polarizing movie to date) made me realize something. I love David O. Russell’s direction for a lot of the reasons people hate him. Joy isn’t as outstanding as Silver Linings Playbook or American Hustle, but it has David O. Russell doing everything he does best and he still delivers one hell of a movie. Joy is a clever and ambitious glimpse into a low income, single mother’s determination to follow her dreams and rise to the top in late 20th century America.

Joy Mangano (Jennifer Lawrence) is a brilliant, imaginative young woman living a nightmarish life in New York in the late 1980’s. Her dreams of inventing things were put on hold for a variety of reasons. Her divorced mother (Virginia Madsen) and father (Robert De Niro) both live in her house and she constantly has to take care of them. Her marriage with a failed singer named Tony (Édgar Ramírez) led to two kids and a separation and now her ex-husband and there kids also live in this house. And I haven’t even mentioned her awful job at an airport where she isn’t respected by her boss or the customers. This endless chaos has seemingly put an end to the hopes she had when she was just a little girl. But a random accident and a bad dream leads to Joy creating an exciting new product called the Miracle Mop. Using only her smarts and her invention, she must battle a storm of issues including a psychotic step sister, a corrupt building company and Neil Walker (Bradley Cooper), the arrogant head of the QVC network which ends up making her product famous.

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One of the things I love about David O. Russell is how much liveliness there is to his storytelling. American Hustle is a movie where something is always happening and you have to be alert the entire time to learn more about the characters and follow the story. There’s an eccentricity and a confidence to it that you don’t see in a lot of writers these days. With Joy, he brings his form of storytelling to even louder and more intense levels. People might complain that its story is sloppy and noisy and unpleasant. To this criticism I have to say, well yeah…that’s the point.
Joy is supposed to be drowning in her life. She has to deal with all of these problems and she never gets any moments of alone time or peace of mind. Jennifer Lawrence’s excellent performance gives us a woman with a confident exterior who is secretly dying inside. There’s a terrific moment when she’s fighting with Tony and there’s a split second where you can see her rise to level of horror and panic that she rarely shows. When she creates the Miracle Mop, she has even more issues to deal with and it’s only when she has successfully made sure that her product is safe that she can finally rest.

Joy is a claustrophobic, chaotic experience because it’s meant to play as an escape story. But it’s not an escape story like Gravity where an astronaut must escape certain death in space, it’s about the escape of a single mother from the expectations and the limits society has put around her for her entire life. Her father puts down everything she does and her mother wastes her life away watching soap operas on her TV. Neil talks down to her and doesn’t respect the work she puts into the things she does. The movie traps you into this awful life she leads and you feel her desperation and the loud, unstoppable noise she has to live with. This makes you want to see her get out and break free and become her own person. The uneasiness you feel in her suburban life makes it’s that much more rewarding when you see her end up conquering her fears. That’s why the movie is quick and feels like all of these sub-plots are just about to fall in on each other.

My favorite moment in the movie comes near the end of the story when it looks like Joy has finally broken through with The Miracle Mop. She walks down the sidewalk and comes across this small toy shop. She doesn’t go inside but she looks into it through a window. Inside she sees this model train set that seems to contain the ideal, perfect little neighborhood. She also notices that inside this toy store is a happy family with two loving parents and a young girl. She can’t reach out and touch these things because again, it’s blocked by a window. And then she stops looking into the toy story and she looks up and sees a machine on top of her that creates artificial snow. As she looks up, the snow from this machine reaches her face and she seems to be completely calm.

It seems like such a random moment but I think it beautifully summarizes an important message in the film. Joy can’t have that perfect, ordinary life that’s in the window. She doesn’t have ordinary parents, an ordinary marriage or an ordinary neighborhood to live in. This lifestyle will always be out of reach for her. But yet, maybe what she has is even better. The comfort she has is from something that she made. Her peace of mind can come from the fact that she has done something with her life that has affected a lot of people and made her a very powerful person. In the end, Joy’s moment of clarity comes from the power of human ingenuity rather than the dependence of the perfect ordinary family inside the toy store. The anger, the frustration with her family will always be a problem for her but it doesn’t have to be something that bothers her and it doesn’t have to be something that she has to seek the approval of anymore. She can give her own children a different life that’s free from the hardships she herself faced. Joy is a movie about becoming something that no one ever believed in or supported besides you.

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All of the other lovely things you would expect from David O. Russell also make an appearance here. The movie has an amazing cast and Russell once again proves himself as perhaps being the best director working today when it comes to getting great performances out of his actors. As I already mentioned, Lawrence is wonderful as Joy and she gives her best performance here since Silver Linings Playbook. Robert De Niro, Edgar Ramirez and Bradley Cooper all make their characters very entertaining and memorable. Elisabeth Röhm is also playing a great villain in the few scenes she’s in as Joy’s manipulative step-sister who’s always resentful of what Joy has been able to accomplish. Other than Lawrence, I think the big stand out here would probably be Diane Ladd as Joy’s grandmother. Through thick and thin, she seems to be one of the few people who is always on Joy’s side and her narration in the film carries a lot of weight and significance.

The production design and costume design do a great job of bringing you back to that time in the late 80’s to early 90’s, especially in the scenes that take place at the QVC network. The cinematography is beautiful and Russell brings to Joy the grainy, 70’s look that also made American Hustle look stunning and unique. The visuals in his films always remind me of what you would expect in an old Altman or Scorsese movie. And at this point, it seems unnecessary to point how excellent the soundtracks are in his films. There’s a moment in the movie where Joy faces a tragic event in her family and the song Expecting to Fly by Buffalo Springfield is used perfectly. David O. Russell is an extremely confident director and no matter what movie you watch from him, you know that you’re going to get this beautiful looking world that contains a distinct voice. When you watch one of his movies, you know that you will be getting something that looks like someone has put their blood, sweat and tears into it. That’s a surprising rarity with recent dramas like Spotlight that really could’ve been directed by anyone.

More than American Hustle or Silver Linings Playbook, I can understand why people wouldn’t like this movie. The way the story is told is very bizarre and some of the characters could use a bit more development like her best friend/ex-husband Tony or Joy’s kids. But for all of its flaws and scratches, I unapologetically adored Joy. The film is incredibly made, excellently acted and it has one of the strongest character arcs of the year in its title character. The movie celebrates a woman who escapes from the certainty and the ugliness of her life to find a bright future in her own dreams and ideas. The cuts and the frantic nature of this world is what makes it human and David O. Russell has a clear talent for making situations and characters that feel alive and kicking. When we get to the last scene of Joy walking down the street with her shades on with seemingly endless confidence on her face, it makes you want to burst from your seat in well…joy.

Rating:(4.5/5)

Review by: Ryan M.

Release Date: 12/25/2015

Rating: PG-13

Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Bradley Cooper, Édgar Ramírez, Diane Ladd, Virginia Madsen, Isabella Rossellini, Dascha Polanco, Elisabeth Röhm and Susan Lucci

Directed by: David O. Russell

Screenplay by: David O. Russell and Annie Mumolo

Joy (2015)

JoyPoster

Title: Joy
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: David O. Russell
Written by: David O. Russell and Annie Mumolo
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Bradley Cooper, Édgar Ramírez and Diane Ladd
Release Date: 12/25/2015
Running Time: 124 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

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.


What did you think of this film?

During Credits? No

After Credits? No

Memoriam: In Loving Memory of Burton Brand, M.D. 1925 – 2015, Bertil Sandgren 1942 – 2015 and Sharon Baumgarten Maifeld 1959 – 2015


Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2, The (2015)

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Title: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: Francis Lawrence
Written by: Danny Strong and Peter Craig
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Natalie Dormer, Gwendoline Christie, Elizabeth Banks, Julianne Moore, Sam Claflin, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Jena Malone, Stanley Tucci and Philip Seymour Hoffman
Release Date: 11/20/2015
Running Time: 137 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

As the war of Panem escalates to the destruction of other districts by the Capitol, Katniss Everdeen, the reluctant leader of the rebellion, must bring together an army against President Snow, while all she holds dear hangs in the balance.


What did you think of this film?

During Credits? No

After Credits? No

Memoriam: In Memory of Garry Bailey

Was seeing The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2 in IMAX worth the cost?

Serena (2014)

SerenaPoster

Title: Serena
Rating: R
Director: Susanne Bier
Writer: Christopher Kyle
Based on the book by: Ron Rash
Stars: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Rhys Ifans
Release Date: 2/26/2015
Running Time: 109 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

In Depression-era North Carolina, the future of George Pemberton’s timber empire becomes complicated when he marries Serena.


What did you think of this film?

During Credits? No

After Credits? No

Special thanks to Frank S. for this submission


Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1, The (2014)*

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TITLE: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1

RELEASE DATE: 11/21/2014

RATING: PG-13

When Katniss destroys the games, she goes to District 13 after District 12 is destroyed. She meets President Coin who convinces her to be the symbol of rebellion, while trying to save Peeta from the Capitol.

What did you think of this film?


Official Site

IMDb


During Credits? No

After Credits? Yes

Click to see whats: after the credits

Is this stinger worth waiting around for? Vote DownVote Up (-228 rating, 406 votes)

In Memoriam: In Loving Memory of Philip Seymour Hoffman.

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