Thursday, October 1, 2015

A Brave Heart - The Lizzie Velasquez Story

A BRAVE HEART: The Lizzie Velasquez Story is a documentary following the inspiring journey of 26 year old, 58 pound Lizzie from cyber-bullying victim to anti-bullying activist. Born with a rare syndrome that prevents her from gaining weight, Elizabeth "Lizzie" Velasquez was first bullied as a child in school for looking different and, later online, as a teenager when she discovered a YouTube video labeling her "The World's Ugliest Woman." The film chronicles unheard stories and details of Lizzie's physical and emotional journey up to her multi-million viewed TEDx talk, and follows her pursuit from a motivational speaker to Capitol Hill as she lobbies for the first federal anti-bullying bill. Written by Sara Hirsh Bordo

This young woman is the most beautiful, most amazing young woman I have listened to in quite some time.  Her family is the perfect example of how important it is that we not only protect our children, but empower them.  Stand beside them - not behind them.  Listen. Be aware. Be brave.

Lizzie took her situation and decided to use it for good.  And she rocked it.

We should all be so beautiful.  We should all be so brave. 

My daughter has always marched to her own drummer, so she met plenty of bullies growing up. Once I heard about Lizzie, I knew I wanted to be one of her soldiers.   So here I am - shouting from the rooftop - stream this movie now (it's available online - I used Google Movies).

It would be difficult to review this as a "film".  This is Lizzie's story - shared with her stamp of approval and that is all I am going to say about that.

Rated PG - 13 (but any child over the age of 7 can & should see this - in my opinion.)

Friday, September 25, 2015

You're Never Too Old To Be The Intern

"70-year-old widower Ben Whittaker has discovered that retirement isn't all it's cracked up to be. Seizing an opportunity to get back in the game, he becomes a senior intern at an online fashion site, founded and run by Jules Ostin." ~ IMDB

Rated PG-13

 Nancy Meyers makes movies just for me.  At least that's what I choose to believe.  I loved "Something's Got To Give" & "It's Complicated", so I was pretty sure I would like this movie.  What I didn't expect was to laugh hysterically - along with the entire audience - multiple times!

 I have to admit I wasn't blown away by Anne Hathaway. I kept feeling she wasn't that believable.  Give Reese Witherspoon or Jennifer Aniston this role, and now you have something. 

I was also bored with the character of Matt (Jules husband).  He was a real jerk & in real life - any strong woman would have kicked him to the curb.  

It was the interaction between Ben Whittaker (played by Robert De Niro) and the other three interns who stole the show IMO.  Adam Devine and Zack Pearlman – both were hilarious!

Overall, I really enjoyed this movie!  It was nice to see a film the whole family could enjoy. 

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Johnny Depp is Pure Evil in Black Mass

"While his brother Bill (Benedict Cumberbatch) remains a powerful leader in the Massachusetts Senate, Irish hoodlum James "Whitey" Bulger (Johnny Depp) continues to pursue a life of crime in 1970s Boston. Approached by FBI agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton), the lawman convinces Whitey to help the agency fight the Italian mob. As their unholy alliance spirals out of control, Bulger increases his power and evades capture to become one of the most dangerous gangsters in U.S. history."  

Rated R (for brutal violence, language, sexual references & brief drug use)

Goodbye Edward Scissorhands - this is a whole new Johnny Depp.  His dark, honest portrayal of Whitey Bulger, one of the most notorious criminals in US History will come up in every Oscar conversation this season.  His icy blue stare is still haunting me.

Depp wasn't the only performance that blew my mind with this movie.  Joel Edgerton played "Good Cop Gone Bad" brilliantly.  His face seemed to slowly melt as he got sucked further and further into the dark world of Whitey Bulger & the Winter Hill Gang.

Dakota Johnson?  Turns out she is so much more than a silly young girl into S&M - her performance as Bulger's mistress was perfect.  She earned my respect as an actor with this performance and I can't wait to see more of her.

One of the scariest scenes of the movie is between Marianne Connolly (played by Julianne Nicholson) & Bulger.  While the men talk over dinner, she has locked herself upstairs pretending to be sick to avoid being around Bulger, of whom she is terrified.  Sensing something is off, Bulger goes to check on her.  I won't spoil the scene, but I will tell you it isn't one you will soon forget.  

While the movie seemed a bit slow paced at times, Director Scott Hooper keeps us mesmerized by the authenticity of the set, the costuming, & the makeup.  We were in a time machine and it was flawless.

Hooper knows how important it is to sell the level of sociopath Whitey Bulger really was. Because of that,   I admit to spending 1/2 of the movie looking directly at the floor because I couldn't stomach the violence.

Overall, I really liked this movie.  Even if I couldn't watch half of it.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Amy Schumer Shoots & Scores in "Trainwreck" - Movie Review

"Since she was a little girl, it's been drilled into Amy's head by her rascal of a dad that monogamy isn't realistic. Now a magazine writer, Amy lives by that credo - enjoying what she feels is an uninhibited life free from stifling, boring romantic commitment - but in actuality, she's kind of in a rut. When she finds herself starting to fall for the subject of the new article she's writing, a charming and successful sports doctor named Aaron Conners, Amy starts to wonder if other grown-ups, including this guy who really seems to like her, might be on to something." Written by Universal Pictures (IMDB)
Rated - R

Schumer has a huge following, thanks to her Comedy Central Show “Inside Amy Schumer” .  In Trainwreck, it’s hard to tell where the real Amy ends, and this fictional character begins.

This movie takes less than a minute to get it's first 
laugh, and never slows down.  In the opening scene, 
two young girl listen as their Dad uses doll analogies 
to explain why he is leaving their mom, and why 
monogamy isn't real.  Fast forward 20 years and we 
see just how much Amy listened to her Dad.  
Spending her weekends getting drunk, smoking pot 
and hooking up with one night stands she is a "hot mess". 

The entire cast has great chemistry -  and they all deliver the laughs.  John Cena has several "sexy?" scenes and of course we all fall in love with Aaron, played by the brilliant Bill Hader.  It took me a solid hour to figure out the actress playing her boss was none other than Tilda Swinton.  But it was LeBron James who stole the show for me.  James plays himself in the film, a patient and over-protective friend to lovable Aaron.  He was quite charming.

While Trainwreck was as funny as it gets, there is a serious undertone to the movie that sets Amy Schumer apart as an actress.  She handled drama like a pro.  My prediction?  We will be seeing a lot more of Amy Schumer, and that makes me a happy girl.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Meet Me In Montenegro - Movie Review

If you are a hopeless romantic like me, you will enjoy Meet Me In Montenegro.  Never heard of it?  Neither had I.  But I pay attention when Facebook "recommends" things to me, and this time it paid off in a sweet way.

In this personal, inter-continental love story two ex-lovers, Lina (Linnea Saasen), a Norwegian dancer and Anderson (Alex Holdridge), an American filmmaker, meet by chance during a visit to Berlin. Their romance is rekindled in spite of the fact that they are both moving to opposite ends of the earth in the next forty-eight hours. Meanwhile Anderson's friends, Stephen (Rupert Friend) and Friederike (Jennifer Ulrich), toy with exploring the sexual boundaries of their long-term relationship. Berlin nestles these couples in her outstretched streets, while they wrestle with the perennial challenge of finding love, recognizing it and keeping it alive.
Written by Anonymous (IMDB) Rated PG-13

I spent yesterday afternoon doing one of my favorite things;  losing myself in a sweet little romantic comedy.  

I loved the rhythm of this film - I was never exactly sure how things were going to end.  Back and forth - up and down.  Is she good?  Is she bad?  Is he going to be ok?  Is he bad? Will he leave her? Will she leave him?  Can they make it?  It was very unpredictable, but isn't real love?

I loved Alex Holdridge as Anderson -  in all his goofiness and odd little outfits.  So many times movies bring us unrealistic human beings - so perfectly beautiful we can't really connect. Not so in this film. Our lovers here are real, clumsy, messy, everyday people. But like the rest of us in the real world, they love.  They make mistakes.  They forgive.  They move on. They walk away. They regret.  They do second chances.

I am also in love with the whimsical sketches and graffiti sprinkled throughout the movie. Animation from Anderson's journal morphing into a scene added one more level to the intimacy I felt with his character.  

Tie this all up with a cool soundtrack and the backdrop of Berlin and Montenegro and you really have a winner.  I highly recommend!

All Good Things Must Come To An End. Bye, David!!

Well all good things must end - and so it goes with my friend David, who was going to give me a half a million dollars.  I knew it was to good to be true when he contacted two other facebook friends, Brian and Brandon and advised them of their winnings.  Brandon was all prepared to start a new conversation with him when he was met with this sad reply:

Who knows what happened to my dear friend, but I will share with you our last correspondence:

Wednesday 10:03am

Greetings.. Good morning to you...
Hi David.
Wednesday 1:05pm

How are you doing..what is the progress..
Thursday 1:02am

You are not responding

Do you want your winnings to be terminated
I am in jail.
Thursday 12:04pm

And you can still communicate with me

Tell your dad so he can bail you out

If you have pay the delivery fee,your will be happy now
Thursday 3:48pm
I have a phone hidden in a hole behind some books in the library. Haven't you ever seen Orange is the New Black?
Friday 1:45pm

You are not serious..
I am too serious. This sucks. I really needed that $550,000 to get out of this mess I am in

Fuck up you are not serious..You are opportune but you mess it up keeping it on pending..
Friday 3:33pm

Friday 5:17pm

5 hours ago

Good morning..How was your weekend..

I am not sure why he had to swear at me.  That really hurt my feelings.  Sorry I didn't win the loot - I was going to throw one heck of a party!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

In Which he talks about Gladys & threatens termination #ScamUpdate

This guy is persistent!!!! (My replies in red)

Are you ready to receive your winnings..
I am.  But I can only give you my delivery fee via the mail. I can send cash.

Go to the moneygram outlet near you to send the delivery fee
I went to the post office and got a money order

Are you ready to send the fee via moneygram
Is this the same thing as a money order?
What is your address?

I need to ask..did you have the money now with you. will cash the money out and go to the moneygram outlet to send it and not money order.
But they charge me a fee at money gram!

They will only charge you 10
They will only charge you 10

Receiver's:name Gladys  tullar
Receiver's:City Lubbock
Receiver's:state Tx
Zip code  : 79404
Text question:favorite color
Text answer:Blue
$350?  What is that for?

How much s the fee you are paying for your winnings to be delivered.
No you said it was only $1.80!!!  What is going on?  Are you scamming me?

No..I told you that you can pay the fee twice..
Slow down cowboy.  You told me 180.  You NEVER said 350.   NEVER

Go and send te 180 now.. So that I can forward it to the HQ rightnow.
I already did

Are you there

Did you send it via moneygram?

Snap the receipt ok
Snap it?  Like rip it?

Do you want it to be terminated.
Are you threatening to terminate me?  That seems illegal, David.
And who is Gladys?   Are you married!?!?

That is the Agent with your winnings,as soon as you make the payment on her name,she will deliver your winnings.
I would like to talk to Gladys.  Can you go get her?

She is not around,she s delivering other are just wasting your time if you did not make the payment...

If you are sincere,you will get your winnings.

And now this morning...

Good morning to you...

Chat Conversation End