Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Tag: Michael Keaton

Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)*

Title: Spider-Man: Homecoming
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: Jon Watts
Written by: Jonathan Goldstein, John Francis Daley, Jon Watts, Christopher Ford, Chris McKenna, and Erik Sommers
Starring: Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Zendaya, Donald Glover, Jacob Batalon, Laura Harrier, Tony Revolori, Tyne Daly, Bokeem Woodbine, Marisa Tomei, and Robert Downey Jr.
Release Date: 7/7/2017
Running Time: 133 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

What did you think of this film?
A young Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Tom Holland), who made his sensational debut in Captain America: Civil War, begins to navigate his newfound identity as the web-slinging super hero in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Thrilled by his experience with the Avengers, Peter returns home, where he lives with his Aunt May (Marisa Tomei), under the watchful eye of his new mentor Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.). Peter tries to fall back into his normal daily routine – distracted by thoughts of proving himself to be more than just your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man – but when the Vulture (Michael Keaton) emerges as a new villain, everything that Peter holds most important will be threatened.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? Yes

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Are There Any Extras After The Credits? Yes

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Is this stinger worth waiting around for? Vote UpVote Down (+97 rating, 509 votes)

Special thanks to Adi, Ivan, and Amado for this submission

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Founder, The (2016)*

Title: The Founder
Rating: PG-13
Directed by: John Lee Hancock
Written by: Robert D. Siegel
Starring: Michael Keaton, Nick Offerman and John Carroll Lynch
Release Date: 1/20/2017
Running Time: 115 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

What did you think of this film?
The true story of how Ray Kroc (Michael Keaton), a struggling salesman from Illinois, met Mac and Dick McDonald, who were running a burger operation in 1950s Southern California. Kroc was impressed by the brothers’ speedy system of making the food and saw franchise potential. Writer Robert Siegel (THE WRESTLER) details how Kroc maneuvered himself into a position to be able to pull the company from the brothers and create a billion-dollar empire.


Are There Any Extras During The Credits? Yes

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Are There Any Extras After The Credits? No

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Special thanks to Frank and Jamie for this submission


Spotlight Review – 3.5 out of 5 Stars

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We haven’t had a good film about journalism in what feels like decades. A part of the reason for this is that people don’t have the same level of respect for the media that they had in the past. Before internet culture, people saw reporters and journalist as the intelligent heroes in All the Presidents Men and The China Syndrome, using there intellect to bring out the truth. Nowadays, it’s hard not to see the media as it’s shown in the once thought to be preposterous world of Network. TMZ, Fox News and CNN live on shoddy reporting that exploits tragedies, rushes stories before finding facts and generally manipulates the viewers. Modern mainstream media has become so bad that people go to more comedic shows for actuals news. It says something when the best movie about reporting that I’ve seen in years was Nightcrawler.

So while there are several flaws that keep Thomas McCarthy’s Spotlight from being perfect or even great in my mind, I can at least understand why this film will be a huge breath of fresh air for audiences and reporters alike. After duds like Truth and True Story, we have a movie that gives a truly heroic portrait of journalists and the steps they take to research a story and affect the culture surrounding them.

In 2002, The Boston Globe’s Spotlight team (Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, Brian d’Arcy James, John Slattery) decided to begin a secret investigation into sexual abuse involving Catholic priests in the state of Massachusetts. They originally believe there to be five priests that have been covered up by the church but the list of people expands as more investigating is done.

I think one of the few things people will agree on with this movie is its intelligence. The movie tries to really explore every nook and cranny of how the story was handled. You get to see all the details from them talking about choosing this subject in a board room to them going back to work after publishing the story in there paper. You watch them go through thousands of pages looking for guilty priests and you see the conversations they have with lawyers, friends, victims and sometimes even the perpetrators in the hopes of finding out more information. The movie is about capturing all of these little things that they had to do in order to release this story and if anything, the movie gives you a new found respect for the work journalists go through.

What’s impressive about this movie is that you would assume that it would be relatively boring to watch for two hours and ten minutes. I was suspicious about a movie being made about the subject in the first place and it didn’t help that before Spotlight I saw Truth, an ungodly long and boring movie about the news.

To be honest, I was a little bored near the start of the movie. Not a lot of things were happening and I was worried that the film would be like this for the rest of its running time. But as the story develops and they gather more information, the movie becomes faster and more thrilling until it’s suddenly over. Now having seen the entire movie, this is one of the rare times where I compliment a part of the film for being boring. This transformation from slower, more atmospheric storytelling into non-stop information is a creative and accurate representation of what it was like for the people who were working on this story. In the beginning, there might be a lot of dead ends and useless clues. But all it takes is for a few of these tiny clues to piece together for you to start picking up on bigger and bigger material to work with.

Besides its sheer competence when it came to handling the story, Spotlights biggest hit is in the overall message it tries to give. What this movie tries to heroize is a rarity in modern pop culture. The heroes in Spotlight aren’t big, larger than life super heroes who save the day with over the top action scenes and gigantic speeches about how what they do is the right thing. The heroes in Spotlight work on the bottom floor, they take the bus to work and they spend their nights researching in libraries. They create answers and they help victims with their quiet intellect. And after hundreds of hours of perfecting until they have something they can give to the public, they rest and then there back on Monday, sitting at their desks finding out about a new topic they can give to the world. It isn’t pretty or filled with stirring speeches. But at the end of the day, the smart, quiet people are the ones who get results and create change.

It’s so easy to make a movie that tries to glamorize heroism and shows a hero as being someone who does the biggest thing or says something the loudest. Current mainstream news certainly seems to believe this. You can’t turn on Fox News these days without finding some new thing for them to get angry about without providing any evidence. But real journalism and being a real hero looks like Spotlight, it’s slow, detailed and calculated. It’s quiet, silent figures performing a thankless job not in the hopes of achieving accolades or honor, but a beautiful outcome that can hopefully in some small way inch us towards a better future for everyone around us. Stanley Tucci excellently portrays Michael Garabedian, an attorney for sexually abused children that helps the Globe with their case. At the end of the movie, he shares a brief moment of kindness with Mark Ruffallo’s character and then he goes right back to his job in a small room helping two kids who were sexually abused. I think that quietly devastating sequence is the heart of Spotlight.

That’s not to say the movie is a perfect delivery of that theme. In the process of showing the creation of the article in the most accurate and complex way possible, it sometimes doesn’t create the same level of standards for its characters. I hate to talk about real people like this because I have to assume there all good people but in the case of this movie I found many of the main characters to be underwritten. The smaller characters like Garabedian and the abuse victims are very well written because they are more blatantly showing the subject matter but I think the movie gives a lot of exposition to everyone who worked on the Spotlight team and it makes the movie more distant and cold. The movie spends so much time giving them information to tell the audience that they don’t have that much time to reveal anything about their personal lives or even some of the tiny quirks that they might have.

I honestly can’t tell you anything about Ruffalo and McAdams’ characters beyond the fact that they’re reporters. The movie tries to make them more calculated to show quiet heroism but it goes a little too far and it created a distance between me and the main characters. I shouldn’t feel like I’m waiting for the supporting characters to show up but that’s how this film felt to me. In one of the weakest scenes in the movie, Ruffalo desperately tries to breathe life into an absolutely one note character in a rant that no doubt will be shown at next year’s Oscars ceremony. I have nothing against him as an actor but it was painfully obvious how he was trying to add things that weren’t there for the most mediocre character in the movie.

I also found Thomas McCarthy’s direction to be perfectly fine but nothing to write home about. It’s not at all a poorly made movie; it’s well edited and it has great cinematography. At the same time, McCarthy doesn’t add the extra kick to this movie that could’ve turned it from good to outstanding. He does a competent job with spotlight but that’s it, he does a competent job. He does give any nuances, quirks or originality to the screenplay and he doesn’t seem to have any real vision besides just shooting the movie. The music is repetitive, generic and distracting which is something that can seriously damage a movie in my eyes. McCarthy doesn’t show any creativity with this movie and I don’t think he gives Spotlight anything that couldn’t have been done by another filmmaker.

Spotlight is a film that’s much easier to appreciate than enjoy. I respect the accurate portrayal of journalism and the way it advocates for smarter, less reactionary reporting. I think the movie tries to present a unique perspective on what it means to be a hero. Unfortunately, I think there are too many things in the movie that I found to be middle of the road. The story is great but the main characters are forgettable. McCarthy’s direction is fine but he doesn’t give the movie any of the heart or soul it needed to take it home. Spotlight is very competent and simply going down a checklist, this is a movie that seems to do everything right. I just feel like the movie lacks a heart and an intimacy that’s necessary for me to fall in love with it.

Rating:(3.5/5)

Review by: Ryan M.

Release Date: 11/25/2015

Rating: R

Cast: Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, Brian d’Arcy James, John Slattery and Stanley Tucci

Directed by: Tom McCarthy

Screenplay by: Josh Singer and Tom McCarthy

Spotlight (2015)

SpotlightPoster

Title: Spotlight
Rating: R
Directed by: Tom McCarthy
Written by: Tom McCarthy and Josh Singer
Starring: Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber and John Slattery
Release Date: 11/6/2015
Running Time: 128 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

The true story of how the Boston Globe uncovered the massive scandal of child molestation and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese, shaking the entire Catholic Church to its core.


What did you think of this film?

During Credits? No

After Credits? No

Note: “If you have been affected by these issues or want to support investigative journalists and their work go to spotlightthefilm.com


Minions (2015)*

MinionsPoster

Title: Minions (aka. Minions 3D)
Rating: PG
Directed by: Kyle Balda and Pierre Coffin
Written by: Brian Lynch
Starring: Sandra Bullock, Jon Hamm, Michael Keaton, Allison Janney, Steve Coogan, Jennifer Saunders, Geoffrey Rush and Steve Carell
Release Date: 7/10/2015
Running Time: 91 minutes

Official Site
IMDb

Minions Stuart, Kevin and Bob are recruited by Scarlet Overkill, a super-villain who, alongside her inventor husband Herb, hatches a plot to take over the world.


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During Credits? Yes

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After Credits? Yes

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Birdman Review – 4 out of 5 Stars

BirdmanPoster
Birdman isn’t a movie you should talk about as soon as you finish watching it. There so many different things that can be said or discussed for the film and watching it once doesn’t give it justice. Having taken a while to think the film over, I can confidently say I think it’s one of the best movies of the year despite some heavy problems I admittedly had with the screenplay.

Birdman presents the life of actor Riggin Thompson (Michael Keaton), a washed up, has been most notable for playing the superhero Birdman in the late 80’s, early 90’s. Some decades later, Riggin tries to revitalize his career by doing a stage production of Raymond Carver’s What We Talk About When We Talk About Love. In making the play, he sacrifices his family, friends & sanity in an attempt to regain any small glimpse of what his fame used to be.

Director and writer Alejandro González Iñárritu tries to take us into the soul of a dying man with the character of Thompson. Riggin used to be one of the biggest names in Hollywood, everybody loved him and he received lots of money. Twenty years later, he is running out of time. Everybody mocks him, hates him or has forgotten about him. He has become detached from his ex-wife Sylvia (Amy Ryan) and his daughter Sam (Emma Stone). What he is doing with this play is his attempt to obtain not just stardom but peace with himself. This is about the rebirth of a man, now understanding the sheer darkness and chaos of the universe. Everyone will eventually be forgotten and the memory of Riggin will be as dead as the man himself, there will be no way he can ever be forever remembered. Almost all of the characters in the movie are self-obsessed and lonely and they all seem to be living in their own little world. Every day, Riggin is surrounded by these people who attack him and lie to him. But the movie isn’t focusing on the despair and grimness of our situation; it is talking on a man’s attempt to escape from it. He wants to fly away from his ego and illusions of grandeur and break into something much more natural and eternal. He finds peace with the conversations he has with his family but in the end he has to do the thing that will ultimately strip him of the thing that has haunted him his entire life. If he comes out the other side, he will transform into something far more loving and giving. Birdman comes down to being a man’s last chance to escape into a better life than the one he has been chasing for many years.

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González’s direction is grade A for a lot of reasons. The movie takes on the hard task of trying to make it look like it was done in one shot. And while I assume they cut every once in a while, you leave with a massive appreciation for all the work it took in editing and shooting it to look that way. Having the movie filmed like this gives the setting of Riggin’s mental breakdown a sort of dreamlike, fantastical quality that almost makes New York City look like other worldly. There is a great injustice if this movie doesn’t at least get a nomination for the editing. Cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki follows up his Oscar winning work in Gravity with a work that is very visually beautiful. There are plenty of scenes here where he gets to show off his talent for taking normal things and showing them in a way you’ve never seen them shown before. My two personal favorite shots in the movie are when Riggin goes into a brightly colored alcohol store and when we get a shot of a beach with dead jellyfish lying around. It would be remiss not to mention the music. The actual soundtrack made for the film by Antonio Sánchez is great. Mostly consisting of drumming, it helps add intensity and a sort of distinct sound which you don’t get to hear in most movie soundtracks. My favorite musical moments are those are when the movie decides to use classical music. It has a very rich sounds that adds a tragic layer to Thompson that makes it additionally passionate and moving. The movie is pretty close to technically flawless when you look at it from that standpoint, the way González observes his characters; themes and landscapes are truly unique here.

This is probably one of the most talented casts I’ve seen this year. Michael Keaton is killing it in a role he was born to play. Whenever he’s on screen, you get this feeling that he putting more passion and more heart into it than any other role he’s ever had to play. Keaton knew that this was the kind of role that only comes once to an actor and he goes with it. He seems genuinely broken by the end and I think Keaton took a lot of things from his own life and channeled into his own interpretation of Riggin. It’s always great to see this kind of very personal performance.

Emma Stone isn’t in the film as much as you would think, but in one powerful scene between her and Keaton, she manages to steal the show and lock in a nomination at plenty of awards this year. The anger and emotion but ultimate love she has for her father manages to shine through immensely over the course of her scenes. This is the first great performance I’ve seen from her and I hope we get plenty more in what should be an illustrious career. While I wasn’t as over the moon as others were for his performance, Edward Norton is definitely very good as Mike, an egotistical yet talented actor causing havoc on Riggin’s set. Him and Keaton have some great chemistry whenever they’re battling each other on some topics. The real, great supporting actor performance comes from Zach Galifianakis as Riggin’s assistant Jake. Finding himself at the end of his rope, Jake battles to no use to keep Thompson from going over the edge. Like Stone, he has one huge scene that will leave a large impression on you afterwards. For a lot of years I’ve been really impressed with his stand up and I’m glad he got a chance to show his true acting chops. Finally, Amy Ryan is excellent as Thompson’s sort of voice of reason and in a movie full of loud, damaged people, she has to play the most grounded and stable person. The movie is certainly quite strange but she adds the needed quiet and gentleness to Riggin’s character arc.

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If not for the screenplay, this would definitely be one of my top five favorite movies of the year. Unfortunately, there are some major problems I had with what was previously mentioned that kept from falling head over heels for this movie. For example, Riggin’s girlfriend Laura was distractingly poorly written. She didn’t add anything to the grand scheme of things and all of her scenes made her seem very stereotypically kooky without adding any personality. It isn’t helped that actress Andrea Riseborough overacted throughout a lot of the scenes. I just don’t get why that character needed to be there in comparison to everything else.

I think my biggest problem with the movie is how some of the dialogue is written. True, there are plenty of great scenes with conversations between characters but some of the lines felt very forced and pretentious. When doing a movie like this, you walk a fine line between bits of dialogue that are poetic and bits of dialogue that are self-indulgent. A couple of times people would say things that no one would ever say in real life and it seemed like Iñárritu was trying to show how cool and different he was rather than actually benefit the personality of the characters. It’s distracting and off-putting and it keeps you from getting more invested in the characters than you wish you were. There is one line on a rooftop between Mike and Sam about Mike wanting to see the world young again that feels so artsy and heavy handed that it could’ve been written by a random, hipster at Starbuck’s. The themes and characters end up shining through but in the hands of a lesser cast and director, this could’ve become extremely obnoxious and tedious fast. It ends up making what could’ve been a perfect movie, a film that is still great but occasionally puts sounding cool over some more needed depth.

Alejandro González Iñárritu may not be a perfect writer, but he more than proves himself as an outstanding director. Birdman often threatens to become something too distractingly gimmicky but the true scope manages to make you overlook its big problems and see something that is oftentimes exciting and breathe taking. The movie makes good use of its awesome cast and Zach Galifinakis and Emma Stone get to prove there large talent. Head out to the theaters to see this absorbing, strange ride if you haven’t already watched it.

Rating:(4/5)

Review by: Ryan M.

Release Date: 4/4/2014

Rating: R

Cast: Michael Keaton, Zach Galifianakis, Edward Norton, Emma Stone, Naomi Watts and Amy Ryan

Directed by: Alejandro González Iñárritu

Screenplay by: Alejandro González Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris and Armando Bo

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (2014)

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TITLE: Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

RELEASE DATE: 10/17/2014

RATING: R

A washed-up actor who once played an iconic superhero must overcome his ego and family trouble as he mounts a Broadway play in a bid to reclaim his past glory.

What did you think of this film?


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During Credits? No

After Credits? No

RoboCop (2014)

RobocopPoster3

TITLE: RoboCop (aka. RoboCop: The IMAX Experience)

RELEASE DATE: 2/12/2014

RATING: PG-13

In 2028 Detroit, when Alex Murphy (Joel Kinnaman) – a loving husband, father and good cop – is critically injured in the line of duty, the multinational conglomerate OmniCorp sees their chance for a part-man, part-robot police officer.

What did you think of this film?


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During Credits? No

After Credits? No


Post Grad (2009)

TITLE: Post Grad

RELEASE DATE: 8/21/2009

RATING: PG-13

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During Credits? No

After Credits? No


Beetlejuice (1988)

TITLE: Beetlejuice

RELEASE DATE: 3/30/1988

RATING: PG

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During Credits? No

After Credits? No


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