REVIEW: BEASTLY

CAST

Alex Pettyfer (I Am Number Four)
Vanessa Hudgens (Powerless)
Mary-Kate Olsen (Full House)
Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother)
Lisa Gay Hamilton (12 Monkeys)
Peter Krause (The Truman Show)
Dakota Johnson (Fifty Shades of Grey)
Erik Knudsen (Scream 4)
Regina King (The Big Bang Theory)
Peter Krause (The Truman Show)

Vanessa Hudgens and Alex Pettyfer in Beastly (2011)Kyle Kingson (Alex Pettyfer) is the arrogant and vain son of news anchor Rob Kingson (Peter Krause). Kyle bullies Kendra Hilferty (Mary-Kate Olsen), not knowing she is a witch; she transforms him into a hairless, scarred, heavily-tattooed shell of his former self. If Kyle does not find someone who loves him by the next spring he will stay altered permanently. Kyle is taken to live in a private house with their maid Zola Davies (LisaGay Hamilton) and the blind tutor Will (Neil Patrick Harris). Both are comforts to Kyle when his father, unable to deal with his transformation, has abandoned him.Vanessa Hudgens and Alex Pettyfer in Beastly (2011)As spring nears, Kyle finds himself infatuated with Lindy Taylor (Vanessa Hudgens), a former classmate he had avoided. He rescues her drug-addicted father from two dealers, shooting one; the other vows to kill Lindy. Kyle persuades Lindy’s father to allow her to move in with him. At first, Kyle uses a false identity, refuses to see Lindy, and hides from her, which angers her to the point that she stops speaking to him. Kyle eventually reveals his face and the two begin to warm up to each other. Kyle writes a letter professing his love for Lindy but does not give it to her for fear of rejection. He visits Kendra to plead for more time; she refuses, but agrees to restore Will’s vision and grant green cards to Zola’s three children in Jamaica if he gets Lindy to fall in love with him.Vanessa Hudgens and Alex Pettyfer in Beastly (2011)The surviving drug dealer lands in jail. Kyle and Lindy visit Lindy’s hospitalized father. He gives her the letter but regrets it when she tells him she considers him a good friend. Lindy calls him after reading the letter, but a heartbroken Kyle does not answer the phone. Persuaded by Will and Zola, Kyle goes to meet Lindy one last time before she leaves on a school trip to Machu Picchu. Kyle tells her to go, but as she leaves, Lindy tells him that she loves him, breaking the curse. Kyle’s former self is restored but Lindy does not recognize him and tries to call Hunter but Kyle’s phone rings instead. When Lindy realizes what happened, the two share a passionate kiss on the side of the street. After the curse is lifted Will wakes up with the ability to see, and Zola receives the green cards. Kendra approaches Rob Kingson’s office as a new intern, implying that she will test Rob like she did Kyle.Vanessa Hudgens and Alex Pettyfer in Beastly (2011)Beastly is a modern fairytale of “Beauty and the Beast.” I have not read the book, but there is no need. This movie definitely did it justice. If you enjoy the fairy tale then this is a must see to see the story told in the modern time.

 

REVIEW: 21 JUMP STREET

CAST

Channing Tatum (G.I.Joe)
Jonah Hill (Cyrus)
Ice Cube (Ride Along)
Brie Larson (Room)
Dave Franco (Superbad)
Rob Riggle (The Hangover)
DeRay Davis (The Fog)
Jake Johnson (New Girl)
Holly Robinson Peete (Mike & Molly)
Dakota Johnson (Fifty Shades of Grey)
Peter Deluise (Stargate – Sg.1)
Johnny Depp (Into The Woods)

 Nick Offerman (Sing)
Johnny Pemberton (Son of Zorn)
Chris Parnell (Hot Rod)
Ellie Kemper (Bridesmaids)
Valerie Tian (Izombie)
Johnny Simmons (Jennifer’s Body)

 
In 2005, bookish student Morton Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and popular underachieving jock Greg Jenko (Channing Tatum) miss their school prom. Seven years later, the two meet again at the Police Academy and become firm friends and partners on bicycle patrol. They catch a break when they arrest Domingo (DeRay Davis), the leader of a one-percenter motorcycle gang, but are forced to release him after they failed to read him his Miranda rights. 
The two are reassigned to a revived scheme from the 1980s (a reference to the television series) which specializes in infiltrating high schools. Captain Dickson (Ice Cube) gives them new identities and sends them to a high school to contain the spread of a synthetic drug called H.F.S. (Holy Fucking Shit). After mixing up their identities, Schmidt and Jenko are enrolled in classes ill-fitting to their personalities. Schmidt gets a lead on HFS from classmate Molly (Brie Larson) and he and Jenko meet the school’s main dealer, popular student Eric (Dave Franco). The two take HFS in front of him to maintain their cover. After experiencing the drug’s effects, the duo discover how much school has changed since they left: Schmidt’s intelligence makes him popular while Jenko’s lax attitude is frowned upon.
Eric takes a liking to Schmidt, who develops a romantic interest in Molly, while Jenko becomes friends with the students in his AP Chemistry class and finds himself becoming more interested in ‘geeky’ hobbies and media. Schmidt throws a party to gain Eric’s trust. During the party Schmidt confronts some gatecrashers and a fight ensues. Schmidt wins the fight when he smashes his assailant over the head and knocks him out. At a party that Schmidt was invited to, Jenko’s friends hack Eric’s phone and overhear information about an upcoming meeting between Eric and his supplier, but also catch Schmidt making disparaging comments about Jenko.
The rift between the two grows as their new school life invades upon their official police work. Schmidt and Jenko track Eric to a money exchange with the distributors of HFS – the motorcycle gang from the park – and a chase ensues on the freeway. Schmidt hesitates firing his gun upon the gang members and they return to school arguing, the ensuing fight interrupting the school play. The two are expelled from school and are removed from the Jump Street program.
A stressed and terrified Eric later approaches Schmidt and Jenko retelling the freeway encounter, unaware of their role in it. He recruits them as security for a deal taking place at the school prom. While dressing for the prom they begin to help each other and rekindle their friendship. At the prom, Schmidt finds Molly doped up on HFS. He reveals his true identity and begs her to leave. At the deal Schmidt and Jenko are surprised to find that the supplier is the physical education teacher, Mr. Walters (Rob Riggle). He tells them that he made the drug by accident by mixing chemicals stolen from the school chemisty labs with Cool Ranch Doritos and started selling it to the students to supplement his teacher’s salary. And after he caught Eric smoking marijuana he was able to blackmail him into being his dealer.
The motorcycle gang arrives for the deal but Molly interrupts and starts arguing with Schmidt and the motorcycle gang leader recognises Schmidt and Jenko as cops. A Mexican standoff ensues in which Domingo orders his men to kill Schmidt and Jenko. Two of the gang members reveal themselves as undercover DEA agents Tom Hanson and Doug Penhall (Johnny Depp and Peter DeLuise reprising their original roles). In the ensuing gunfight Hanson and Penhall are fatally wounded. Mr. Walters and Eric escape in a limo with the money and Molly as a hostage; the gang, Schmidt and Jenko follow close behind in their own limo with Schmidt driving and Jenko shooting his gun from out the sunroof.
As the car chase winds through the city, Jenko creates a homemade bomb using knowledge garnered from chemistry classes and tosses it into the one-percenters’ limo, blowing it up. Mr. Walters pulls over and attempts to flee on foot with Molly as his hostage. He shoots at Schmidt but Jenko takes the bullet in his arm, saving his partner’s life. In response, Schmidt shoots Mr. Walters, unintentionally severing his penis. The duo successfully read Walters his Miranda Rights (in unison). As they arrest both the teacher and Eric, the two cops reconcile their relationship. The two officers are congratulated and reinstated in Jump Street as Dickson gives them a new assignment: infiltrating a college.
Based on the 80′s television series created by Stephen J Cannell. A thing that makes 21 Jump Street not just some remake, is that the creator of the original television series, Stephen J Cannell (A-Team, Rockford Files, Hawaii Five-O) produced the film. The television show is his baby, so he actually had a say in the final product. The screenplay was written by Jonah Hill. The number one thing that makes 21 Jump Street funny is the pairing up of Jonah Hill  and Channing Tatum in this polar opposite, role reversal, buddy cop movie. Also credited as the film’s executive producers, Hill and Tatum make for a funny odd couple. If you like comedies in the spirit of Superbad, Police Academy, and Step Brothers, then you’ll love 21 Jump Street. I can’t recommend it enough

REVIEW: THE FIVE-YEAR ENGAGEMENT

CAST
Jason Segel (How I Met Your Mother)
Emily Blunt (Looper)
Chris Pratt (Jurassic World)
Alison Brie (Scream 4)
Lauren Weedman (Date Night)
Mimi Kennedy (Mom)
David Paymer (Drag Me To Hell)
Jacki Weaver (Silver Linings Playbook)
Jim Piddock (Austin Powers 3)
Jane Carr (Treasure Planet)
Kevin Hart (Ride Along)
Molly Shannon (Never Been Kissed)
Dakota Johnson (Fifty Shades of Grey)
Rhys Ifans (The Amazing Spider-Man)
Mindy Kaling (Inside Out)
Randall Park (Aquaman)
Brian Posehn (The Big Bang Theory)
Tom Solomon (Jason Segel), a sous chef at a fancy restaurant, and Violet Barnes (Emily Blunt), a psychology PhD graduate, are a happy couple in San Francisco who get engaged a year after they began dating. Their nuptials get interrupted when Tom’s best friend Alex Eilhauer (Chris Pratt) gets Violet’s sister Suzie (Alison Brie) pregnant at Tom and Violet’s engagement party and the two marry before Tom and Violet. Their nuptials get further delayed when Violet gets accepted into the University of Michigan’s post-doctorate in psychology program which lasts two years. Tom agrees to move with her and delay their wedding until then. However, when he tells his boss, he becomes disheartened when she states she was planning on making him head chef at a new restaurant in town.
In Michigan, Violet settles into her new job nicely under her professor Winton Childs (Rhys Ifans). She bases her main thesis on people opting to eat stale donuts versus waiting for fresh donuts, associating impulse-control problems with personal and professional instability. However, Tom, unable to find a suitable chef’s position, ends up working at Zingerman’s and taking up hunting. Tom and Violet’s nuptials get delayed even further when Winton receives NIH funding with Violet’s help, enabling him to extend her program. In the meantime, grandparents of Violet start to die.
As years pass, Tom becomes increasingly disillusioned with his life, which becomes evident to Violet when she sees him eat a stale donut. While at a bar with colleagues, a drunken Violet and Winton kiss each other which Violet immediately regrets. She then visits Tom at work and tells him she wants to plan their wedding now, to which Tom happily agrees. Tom cleans himself up and they make arrangements together. Everything goes well until Violet decides to confess to Tom about kissing Winton. Tom gets disillusioned about their relationship, which reaches a climax when Winton comes to Tom and Violet’s rehearsal dinner to try to apologize. Tom rejects his apology and starts chasing Winton away, with Violet trying to catch up, but Winton gets away after Tom insists that he run or fight him. A drunken Tom then runs into Margaret, one of his Zingerman’s co-workers and has the chance to have sex with her, but opts out. He wakes up half-naked in the snow with a frostbitten toe, and he is taken to the hospital where the toe is amputated. Violet visits Tom at the hospital, before they call off their engagement once they arrive home.
Tom moves back to San Francisco and becomes a sous-chef under Alex at the new restaurant, while also starting a relationship with the hostess Audrey (Dakota Johnson). However, Tom’s parents and Alex see that Tom is dissatisfied with his new life and motivate him to act upon this. Alex fires him, telling Tom that he is the better chef and should open his own franchise. Tom launches a specialty taco truck. Meanwhile, Violet starts a relationship with Winton and receives an assistant professorship at the university, but becomes upset when she learns she got the job because she was dating Winton rather than her abilities as a researcher and breaks up with Winton.
When Violet’s last grandparent dies during the summer, Tom, having broken up with Audrey, shows up at the funeral in England and rekindles his relationship with Violet. They agree to spend the remainder of the summer together in San Francisco, and they begin to reconnect while sharing an apartment and working side-by-side in the taco truck. While driving Violet to the airport, Tom says he can take his food truck to where she is and continue their relationship. Violet then proposes to Tom, stating they’ll always have problems together, but that it shouldn’t stop them from getting married. Tom reveals the engagement ring he gave her initially, stating he was planning on proposing to her at the airport. They both agree and head to Alamo Square Park where Violet has organized for their family and friends to be waiting for an impromptu wedding. Violet allows Tom to choose between various options for the officiant, clothing and music, and they finally get married.
A film from a male perspective analyses relationships effectively for the modern era. For all the people who have been in love, this film will have loads to relate to.

REVIEW: THE SOCIAL NETWORK

 

CAST

Jesse Eisenberg (Batman v Superman)
Andrew Garfield (The Amazing Spider-Man)
Armie Hammer (The Lone Ranger)
Justin Timberlake (Friends With Benefits)
Rooney Mara (Her)
Dakota Johnson (Fifty Shades of Grey)
Rashida Jones (I Love You, Man)
Josh Pence (The Dark Knight Rises)
Malese Jow (The Vampire Diaries)
Lacey Beeman (Power Rangers Time Force)
Jason Flemyng (Snatch)
Jessie Heiman (Chuck)
Riley Voelkel (The Originals)
Joseph Mazzello (Jurassic Park)
Barry Livingston (Argo)
Max Minghella (Horns)
Brenda Song (Dads)
Oliver Muirhead (Like Crazy)
Caleb Landry Jones (Get Out)

MV5BZmRiMzA2MzAtNzAxZC00M2EyLTg1NDctODJkOWQ1MGEyM2UzXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyMzY5MzAxMDc@._V1_David Fincher’s The Social Network is a business procedural played with the intensity of a thriller and the ingenuity of a screwball comedy. It’s something of a departure for the filmmaker, whose pictures lean toward visual pyrotechnics and darker, more disturbing themes. Handling a screenplay by Aaron Sorkin that consists primarily of people in rooms talking, and in which the violence is purely psychological, he curbs his occasional excesses and cooks up his most satisfying film to date. Though mining (with some significant departures from the official record) the origin story of Facebook, a presumably of-the-moment phenomenon, Fincher and Sorkin have made a movie that is about more than its ostensible subject. Yes, The Social Network examines, at least implicitly, the cultural moment that precipitates the explosion of a site that aims specifically to make the social experience a virtual construct. But where the film strikes oil is in understanding the kind of guy who would want to create that experience.His name is Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg), and the opening scene that introduces him is a whiz-bang Sorkin special–a flurry of rat-tat-tat dialogue and cranked-up interplay in which characters talk non-stop while revealing themselves only accidentally. Zuckerberg, a smug Harvard sophomore obsessed with the university social hierarchy that he cannot penetrate, is out with his girlfriend Erica (Rooney Mara); he clearly sees himself as smarter than her (she attends lowly Boston University), but she’s so adroit at conversational maneuvers that before he realizes it, she’s broken up with him. Depressed and half-drunk, he goes back to his dorm, blogs some hurtful things about her, and concocts a website called “facemash” that pulls pictures from campus sites and lets students rank the women against each other. Fincher gives this embryonic sequence the finesse and energy of an action scene–particularly as he intercuts the rich and powerful “club” kids living the life Mark longs for, the velvety seductiveness of the haves in sharp contrast to the laptop tappings of the have-nots.MV5BYjUyYzEzNTMtYzVlYS00ZDJlLWE0MzAtZDU0ZWM2YjE3NWU4XkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyMzQ3Nzk5MTU@._V1_The program crashes Harvard’s server and gets him called on the university carpet, but it also catches the attention of would-be power broker Divya Narenda (Max Minghella) and irritatingly entitled rich twins Tyler and Cameron Winlevoss (both played by Armie Hammer). The trio approaches Mark with an idea for a new networking site–“The Harvard Connection,” a school-wide apparatus for profiles, pictures, and so on. Mark jumps in, but decides almost immediately that he can do this thing better than they can; he builds on the concept, hits up his best friend–and occasional conscience–Eduardo Saverin (Andrew Garfield) for a grand or so in start-up funds, and launches his version, “the facebook.”The complex saga of the rise of Facebook (and of Zuckerberg) is told in interlocking depositions (“I’m currently in the middle of two lawsuits,” Mark explains, somewhat impatiently), which sounds like the dullest imaginable framework for a narrative. But the picture gets a kick from Sorkin’s distinctive conversational rhythms and considerable skills as a wordsmith. The Social Network is a whirlwind of talk–invigorating, intelligent, fast-paced dialogue, from the throwaway lines to the occasional loquacious show-stopper. Every Sorkin script has one (Nicholson’s “You can’t handle the truth” bit in A Few Good Men is the obvious example, though Baldwin’s “I am God” speech in Malice is nearly as quotable); here, it comes when the Winlevosses’ lawyer asks Mark, “Do I have your full attention?,” unleashing a perfect storm of Sorkinian attitude, snark, and barely-contained impatience. “You have part of my attention–you have the minimum amount,” Mark snaps. “The rest of my attention is back at the offices of Facebook, where my colleagues and I are doing things that no one in this room, including and especially your clients, are intellectually or creatively capable of doing. Did I adequately answer your condescending question?”Performances are universally strong–Andrew Garfield (The Amazing Spiderman) is immensely likable and marginally heartbreaking, Hammer’s double-playing is simple but effective, and Timberlake, as the well-connected but semi-flaky Parker, handily sells his multi-layered portrait of the guy who knows all the angles but can’t quite hide his own rough edges. But Eisenberg’s is the breakthrough performance; as good as he’s been as shy, stuttering, would-be intellectuals in Adventureland and Zomiebland, this is a darker and more complicated piece of work. His performance here is somehow both showy and deftly underplayed–you get the sense, from that very first scene, that he’s already tired of always being the smartest guy in the room.Jesse Eisenberg in The Social Network (2010)When The Social Network was announced, it seemed such an oddball project that snickers and jeers were the prevailing response (. But from the unveiling of its mesmerizing trailer, it was clear that this wasn’t just “the Facebook movie,” any more than Citizen Kane was a film about newspapers.