Good Time & Kong: Skull Island Movie Reviews

Two quickie reviews for two 2017 movies that I finally saw. Then I’m going to focus on reviewing movies with at least one Oscar nomination (Kong: Skull Island has one nomination so I guess I’m kind of starting today). Next week I’ll review The Shape Of Water, Darkest Hour, and hopefully both Lady Bird & I, Tonya if I manage to see them after they’re released tomorrow. Oh, and tomorrow I’ll finally review The Greatest Showman (nominated in the Best Song category).

Good Time (2017)

Directed by Ben Safdie & Josh Safdie

Written by Josh Safdie & Ronald Bronstein

Starring: Robert Pattinson, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Ben Safdie, Barkhad Abdi, Buddy Duress, Taliah Webster, Necro

Music by Oneohtrix Point Never

Plot Synopsis: (via IMDb)
After a heist goes awry, a bank robber spends a night trying to free his mentally handicapped brother from being sent to Riker’s Island prison.

My Opinion:

Good Time is one of those films that’s quite good but soooooo extremely “indie” that there’s absolutely no one in real life who I could recommend it to. Only you movie bloggers! 😉

So it appears this was directed by two filmmakers who are brothers & one also does the writing while the other also does the acting (in this case, playing the mentally handicapped brother of Robert Pattinson). This is certainly no Twilight! It’s good to see Pattinson in something so different. He does very well in this as a complete fuck-up who clearly loves & wants to take care of his brother despite not knowing at all what’s actually best for him.

I don’t really know what to say about this. You’ll either like its indie style or you won’t. Stuff happens but it’s the meandering sort of storyline that’s so common in indie films. The way that Pattinson’s character does absolutely everything wrong when it comes to his choices in life was amusing. I liked his brother (played by director Ben Safdie) and you really can’t help but kind of want things to work out for these two bumbling criminals. Oh! But, more than anything, I really liked the electronic score done by Oneohtrix Point Never. I’m a sucker for a good score & I know that really helped me to like this movie a little more than I otherwise might have. It kind of brought It Follows to mind. A good score is very important, filmmakers! Well done Safdie brothers & Oneohtrix Point Never.

My Rating: 7/10

**Forgot to say Jennifer Jason Leigh is barely in this. Damn. I like her.

Kong: Skull Island (2017)

Directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts

Based on King Kong by Merian C. Cooper & Edgar Wallace

Starring: Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, John Goodman, Brie Larson, Jing Tian, Toby Kebbell, John Ortiz, Corey Hawkins, Jason Mitchell, Shea Whigham, Thomas Mann, Terry Notary, John C. Reilly

Plot Synopsis: (via Wikipedia)
Set in 1973, the film follows a team of scientists and a US Army unit recently withdrawn from the Vietnam War who travel to an uncharted island in the Pacific and encounter terrifying creatures and the mighty Kong.

My Opinion:

Speaking of good music in a film, Kong: Skull Island has this as well. This time, though, it was a kick ass soundtrack as opposed to the score (I can’t recall the score). The soundtrack was easily my favorite thing about this movie. What is it with Vietnam-era songs?? I love the angry songs from that time in history. Warning: I’m going to go off on a short non-movie-related rant here. Throughout history, the worst times for the human race have often resulted in fantastic music being made. People pour their hearts into their art during the most desperate times. So… Why does music FUCKING suck nowadays? Hmm?! The world is completely fucked up right now so where’s the great music as a result?????? I’ve wondered this for a while now.

Okay – let’s talk about this movie. It really kind of sucked. I hated it at first. I was mega tired & attempted to watch it & zonked out about 30 minutes in. I remember muttering something like “can’t they make a good monster movie….zzzzzzzz…..snore…….”. Then I tried again and still thought it sucked but kind of enjoyed it in a guilty pleasure sort of way. I think this was mainly thanks to (besides the soundtrack) John C. Reilly. Easily the best character. It took far too long to finally introduce him! No wonder I fell asleep the first time.

Oh. I suppose I should mention the monsters??? MonsterSSSS (plural). Was Kong not enough?! What’s with people these days? Never satisfied! I thought Kong was done quite well. And he was a far more developed character than all those random army guys who were there just to die in entertaining ways. Kong was cool – I think I could be friends with that dude. This movie really did improve in the second half (more Reilly & more Kong). So. I dunno. I enjoyed it yet thought it was a pretty bad film. Fun but bad. Like Road House! No. Wait. Road House is fucking awesome. That’s an 8/10 goodbad movie. Kong isn’t bad enough nor good enough to be goodbad. I’m making no sense. I’m mega tired again.

Awesome Vietnam songs! Black Sabbath & David Bowie! Holy shit! John C. Reilly great. Kong very good. Too many monsters spoil things (ONE other big monster to fight Kong is all we need). Rest of the characters extremely weak, especially all those random army guys. But I still always like having Samuel L. Jackson in a movie so that was a bonus. I enjoyed it more than Godzilla (2014). But I have to say that the best monster movie I’ve seen recently is definitely Colossal.

My Rating: 6/10

From the soundtrack: Time Has Come Today by The Chamber Brothers

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Captain Phillips (2013) Review

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Captain Phillips (2013)

Directed by Paul Greengrass

Starring:
Tom Hanks
Barkhad Abdi
Catherine Keener
Michael Chernus
David Warshofsky
Corey Johnson
Chris Mulkey
Yul Vazquez
Max Martini
Omar Berdouni

Running time: 134 minutes

Plot Synopsis: (via Wikipedia)
Captain Phillips is based on the true story of 2009 Maersk Alabama hijacking, an incident during which merchant mariner Captain Richard Phillips was taken hostage by pirates in the Indian Ocean led by Abduwali Muse. The screenplay was written by Billy Ray, and is based on the 2010 book A Captain’s Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALs, and Dangerous Days at Sea by Richard Phillips with Stephan Talty.

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My Opinion:

Here’s a quickie! I watched this the other night after going to the cinema to watch Her. Trying to squeeze in as many Oscar nominated films as I can before Sunday night! I’ve managed to watch all the best picture nominees now other than 12 Years A Slave, Philomena, and Nebraska. Oh well – I tried! I’m sure 12 Years A Slave will win the majority but… I just couldn’t make myself watch it. Captain Phillips was bad enough – I’m not good with tragic true story types of films. Really not a genre I tend to go for & I fully admit I prefer fiction & escapism when it comes to movies. Probably why I love sci-fi…

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Captain Phillips is a solid enough film for its genre. Tom Hanks is great as always. Who doesn’t love Tom Hanks, nicest guy in Hollywood?? Those pirates were so MEAN & I was like “leave Tom Hanks alone!”. Okay – I know this happened to a real guy so I’m not making light of that it’s just that, the ONLY problem I have with Hanks (and I do love the guy), is that I really see him only as Tom Hanks in every role he plays. Even in this where he’s putting on an accent. He’s an excellent actor but he’s just… Tom Hanks! Lovely guy! He’s like everyone’s favorite dad. So I really didn’t like seeing him upset & getting beat up!

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As for the movie – Well, I can’t exactly say I “enjoyed” it. It’s well made & all that. It started out very strong but the ending felt like nothing but shouting and more shouting and the pirates doing idiotic things and MORE shouting. It was intense but I was tired and all that shouting started to really get on my nerves. But, I suppose it was probably realistic to the true story. Barkhad Abdi is good (although I’m not sure the performance is Oscar worthy). I really did feel for Hanks’ character more than anything. What a horrible ordeal. The film seemed to end a bit abruptly but I suppose it’s good that it didn’t attempt some “Hollywood” ending. Overall, it’s a good film. It’s just not really my type of genre. Sorry… It’s not bad! I do recommend it if it IS the sort of movie you tend to go for. Hanks is the definite highlight of the film.

My Rating: 6.5/10

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