REVIEW: THE ANGRY BIRDS MOVIE

CAST

Jason Sudeikis (Son of Zorn)
Josh Gad (Frozen)
Danny McBride (Pineapple Express)
Maya Rudolph (Bridesmaids)
Bill Hader (Power Rangers)
Peter Dinklage (Game of Thrones)
Sean Penn (Gangster Squad)
Keegan-Michael key (Tomorrowland)
Kate McKinnon (Ghostbusters)
Tony Hale (Chuck)
Hannibal Buress (Spider-Man: Homecoming)
Ike Barinholtz (Suicide Squad)
Jillian Bell (22 Jump Street)
Blake Shelton (The Ridiculous 6)
Alex Borstein (Family Guy)
Ali Wong (American Housewife)
Fred Tatasciore (Hulk Vs)
Billy Eichner (Noelle)
Max Charles (The Neighbours)
Mckenna Grace (I, Tonya)

On Bird Island, an island inhabited by flightless birds, the reclusive Red is sentenced to an anger management class after his temper causes a “premature hatching” of a customer’s egg. Resentful, Red avoids getting to know his classmates Chuck, Bomb, and Terence, as well as the class’s instructor Matilda. One day, a boat docks at the island’s shore containing green-colored pigs, and their captain Leonard, who claim to be peaceful explorers bringing offerings of friendship. The pigs are accepted on the island and introduce the birds to innovative technologies such as slingshots and helium balloons.More pigs arrive and seemingly adjust to the bird’s society, but Red soon becomes suspicious of their motives, as they slowly overwhelm the island. He recruits Chuck and Bomb to help him find Mighty Eagle, a giant bald eagle said to be the protector of the island, and the only bird that can fly, but who has not been seen for many years. They find Mighty Eagle on top of Bird Mountain, but he is now overweight, self-absorbed, and largely in retirement. Looking through the Mighty Eagle’s binoculars, Red’s group sees the pigs planting explosives around the island while the birds, probably unaware the other three are gone, are at a rave party. They realize the party was actually a cover for their plan to steal the birds’ eggs. Red, Bomb, and Chuck attempt to warn the other birds and stop the pigs, but they arrive too late as the pigs escape with the eggs and their explosives destroy the village. When the birds realize what happened, they apologize to Red for not believing him, and the forgiving Red rallies them to let their anger loose and retrieve their eggs.he birds construct a boat and sail to Piggy Island, where they find the pigs living in a walled city and Leonard, who is actually revealed to be King Mudbeard, the king of Piggy Island. Deducing the eggs are most likely in the castle at the center of the city, the birds attack and defeat the pigs by firing themselves over the walls using their gifted giant slingshot. However, when Terrence attempts to launch himself into the city, he accidentally snaps the slingshot in half after pulling himself too far back. Meanwhile, Red, Chuck, and Bomb make it to the castle and find the eggs in a boiler room, where the pigs plan to cook and eat them. Mighty Eagle arrives, having watched these events through his binoculars and had a change of heart, and carries the eggs out of the castle. While the birds escape, one egg falls out and rolls back into the castle. Red battles Leonard and retrieves the egg, escaping as the pigs’ reserve of explosives blow up and destroys Piggy Island. Red reunites with the other birds as the rescued egg hatches, revealing three little blue birds (The Blues), and is declared a hero. He, Chuck, and Bomb are approached by Mighty Eagle, who claims that his laziness was only a ruse so the birds could find faith in themselves. Returning to Bird Island, the birds rebuild Red’shouse, which had been moved by Red near the edge of the island and was gradually destroyed whenever a boat full of pigs had arrived, in the middle of their village. All of the birds that have hatched sing a song to Red to thank him and enshrine him as a legendary hero, and Red lets Chuck and Bomb move in with him.During the end credits, the pigs are revealed to survive Piggy Island’s destruction, as King Mudbeard begins to make a new plan to steal the eggs. In a mid-credits scene, the three blue birds that Red rescued use the rebuilt slingshot to launch themselves out to sea.Even if you haven’t played the game, this movie is fun to watch. I really liked it, the silliness is just right and can be enjoyed by both adults and kids.

 

25 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS REVIEW: THE NIGHT BEFORE

Starring

Joseph Gordon-Levitt (50/50)
Seth Rogen (Knocked Up)
Anthony Mackie (Avengers: Infinity War)
Lizzy Caplan (Allied)
Mindy Kaling (Ocean’s 8)
Jillian Bell (Rough Night)
Michael Shannon (Man of Steel)
Lorraine Toussaint (Girls Trip)
Jason Mantzoukas (The House)
Ilana Glazer (Broad City)
Tracy Morgan (Cop Out)
Randall Park (Office Christmas Party)
James Franco (The Interview)
Miley Cyrus (Two and a Half Men)

Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, and Anthony Mackie in The Night Before (2015)In December 2001, Ethan Miller (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) loses both of his parents in a car accident. His best friends, Isaac Greenberg (Seth Rogen) and Chris Roberts (Anthony Mackie) resolve to spend every Christmas Eve with Ethan. One year, the friends learn of the Nutcracker Ball, a tremendous, invite-only Christmas Eve party. Unable to find the party, the friends continue with their tradition. In 2015, the friends decide to end the tradition. Chris has become a famous football player, and Isaac is married with a baby on the way. Privately, Chris and Isaac worry that Ethan, a struggling musician working at a hotel, is not ready for the tradition to end.Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, and Anthony Mackie in The Night Before (2015)At the hotel, Ethan finds and steals invitations to the Nutcracker Ball. Later, the friends meet at Isaac’s house before going out on their last Christmas Eve together. Prior to leaving, Isaac’s wife Betsy (Jillian Bell) gives him drugs to use during the evening, since he has been so supportive. The friends leave to follow their usual tradition, with the intention to go to the party afterward. Their first stop is the Rockefeller Tree. While at the Tree, Ethan reveals the tickets to the ball. Along the way, Chris, in an attempt to impress his teammates, purchases marijuana from their former high school dealer, Mr. Green (Michael Shannon). While making the purchase, Mr. Green shares the weed with Chris, calling it the present. While at a karaoke bar, the friends run into Diana (Lizzy Caplan), who recently broke up with Ethan for refusing to commit, and Diana’s friend Sarah (Mindy Kaling). The friends learn that Diana and Sarah will be at the Nutcracker Ball, as well. While at the bar, Isaac begins to be negatively affected by the drugs he took, resulting in making a video phone message admitting that he is terrified of having a child. Chris also has his marijuana stolen by a supposed fan (Ilana Glazer) who is a Christmas-hating thief.Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, and Anthony Mackie in The Night Before (2015)Needing more marijuana, the guys contact Mr. Green again, who meets them at Chris’ mother’s (Lorraine Toussaint) house. This time, Isaac meets Mr. Green for some marijuana. It shows him the future where his daughter is a stripper, and his wife blames him for it. The friends end up having dinner, cooked by Chris’ mother, who encourages Ethan to make up with Diana. During dinner, Isaac realizes that he accidentally switched phones with Sarah. While trying to find Isaac’s phone, the same thief steals Chris’ marijuana again. The three friends split up, as Chris wants his marijuana back, Isaac wants his phone, and Ethan wants to go to the party. Chris fails to regain his marijuana, after learning about valuing his true friends from the thief. Isaac, hallucinating from the mixture of drugs he has consumed, meets his wife and her family during Midnight Mass and vomits in church. Ethan ends up beaten by two drunk pub-crawling Santas, after trying to defend the spirit of Christmas.Seth Rogen and Michael Shannon in The Night Before (2015)Upon meeting back at a subway station, the tension between the friends explodes. Ethan reveals that he and Isaac know that Chris’ sudden success and popularity is due to steroids, and Chris reveals that he and Isaac think that Ethan is lost and making excuses for himself. Despite their revelations, the three friends still go to the Nutcracker Ball. Upon arriving, Chris learns that his teammates did not need the marijuana he struggled to obtain, and they also make fun of him for a video shot of him earlier, with his friends. Isaac retrieves his phone, and learns that Sarah never revealed the video message he recorded. Ethan finds Diana and, in an improvised moment, proposes to her in front of the entire party with Miley Cyrus. While she accepts publicly, in private she declines, saying she only said yes because he put her on the spot, and thinks that the only reason why he proposed is because of his fear of losing his friends.In shame, Ethan goes to the roof, where he sees Mr. Green. Mr. Green reveals that he created and has hosted the Nutcracker Ball since its inception. Mr. Green shares marijuana with Ethan, calling it the past. Ethan experiences a memory of his friends initiating their yearly ritual. Ethan rejoins his friends, who have been thrown out of the party after an altercation with Chris’ teammates. As morning dawns, the friends reconcile, just as Isaac receives a message from Betsy saying she is in labor. Rushing to the hospital, in Mr. Green’s conveniently available car, the friends discover that it was a false alarm. Mr. Green is also revealed to be an angel, who has been helping the friends to earn his wings. Isaac shows his wife the video, who admits afterward that she is also scared about raising their daughter. The trio spend Christmas at Isaac’s house, after which Chris has dinner with his mother and admits to his steroid use. Ethan goes to Diana’s house, where he apologizes for how he acted and for not being ready to commit. Diana admits she missed Ethan and accepts his request to finally meet her parents. One year later, the friends and their loved ones spend Christmas together, and are revealed to be happy, and still friends. Isaac’s baby cannot sleep, so the trio serenades her. It is shown that the story was all told from a book read by Santa, who is revealed to be the father of Mr. Green. Overall while The Night Before is no Christmas classic, but for its target audience this film is a winner all the way. Its mindless yes, but its damn hilarious, and I completely enjoyed the film.

 

 

25 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS REVIEW: OFFICE CHRISTMAS PARTY

Starring

Jason Bateman (Horrible Bosses)
Olivia Munn (The Babymakers)
T. J. Miller (Deadpool)
Jennifer Aniston (Just Go With It)
Kate McKinnon (Ghostbusters)
Jillian Bell (Rough Night)
Courtney B. Vance (The Mummy)
Vanessa Bayer (Trainwreck)
Rob Corddry (Ballers)
Karan Soni (Deadpool)
Sam Richardson (Spy)
Randall Park (Bad Neighbours)
Abbey Lee (Mad Max: Fury Road)
Jamie Chung (The Gifted)
Da’Vine Joy Randolph (Empire)
Matt Walsh (Bad Santa)
Ben Falcone (Tammy)
Andrew Leeds (Bones)
Summer Fontana (The Originals)

Jason Bateman and Kate McKinnon in Office Christmas Party (2016)In December 2016, Josh Parker (Jason Bateman), Chief Technical Officer of Zenotek’s Chicago branch, meets with his lawyer, Ezra (Matt Walsh), to finalize his divorce in time for the holidays. Zenotek meanwhile has failed to meet its quarterly quota, and interim CEO Carol Vanstone (Jennifer Aniston) threatens to lay off 40 percent of the staff, cut bonuses, and cancel the annual Christmas party. Her brother, branch manager Clay (T. J. Miller), is desperate to keep his staff.Jennifer Aniston in Office Christmas Party (2016)Carol harbors resentment toward Clay, whom she believed was her father’s favorite, and threatens to shut down the branch. Josh and Clay, along with Josh’s head of tech, Tracey Hughes (Olivia Munn), propose partnering with financial giant Walter Davis (Courtney B. Vance), whom they are having lunch with later that day, and Carol gives them the chance to win his business. Walter is pleased with the pitch, but concerned with another recent branch closure at Zenotek, and feels the company is more about the budget than their people. Clay invites him to their Christmas party in hopes of showing him that their company is in good standing. Before leaving town, Carol offers Josh a position at her New York headquarters, confident her brother will fail.T.J. Miller in Office Christmas Party (2016)Clay funds an exorbitant Christmas party, much to the chagrin of Mary (Kate McKinnon), the head of Human Resources. Joel (Sam Richardson) takes DJ duty, but the party struggles to pick up even with Tracey inviting Chicago Bulls player Jimmy Butler as a friend. Though initially reluctant, Walter is inadvertently doused with cocaine when it is accidentally fed into a snow machine and succumbs to his free-spirited nature. Throughout the party, various employees cut loose: Nate (Karan Soni) tries to impress two of his staff, Tim and Drew (Andrew Leeds and Oliver Cooper), by hiring an escort named Savannah (Abbey Lee) to pretend to be his girlfriend, though Nate is found out when she gives a handjob to a fellow employee; Clay’s assistant and single-mom Allison (Vanessa Bayer) attempts to hook up with new hire Fred (Randall Park) but stops when he reveals he has a mother-child fetish; and customer service supervisor Jeremy (Rob Corddry) cuts loose on the dance floor with Mary, whom he previously despised. Josh and Tracey get stuck on the roof and nearly kiss before Jeremy interrupts them. Back on the dance floor, Clay wins over Walter’s business, and Clay promises everyone they’ll keep their jobs and receive their bonuses. The party gradually grows more and more chaotic as employees begin partaking in orgies, damaging company property, and doing drugs.T.J. Miller in Office Christmas Party (2016)Carol’s flight is cancelled due to weather, and she rushes back to the office when she hears about the party from her Uber driver (Fortune Feimster), who took people to the party. Though Carol is initially impressed with receiving Walter’s business, Walter injures himself attempting to swing off a balcony after a conversation with Clay, and is later discovered to have been fired from his firm, nullifying any contract and thus no longer bringing in any new money to Zenotek. Carol decides then and there to shut down the branch. To add insult to injury, she reminds Josh about the job offer aloud to everyone, especially Clay. Even though Josh says he didn’t accept it, the surrounding employees angrily ignore and shun him. Tracey reveals that she was given the same offer but explicitly rejected it where Josh kept it open. Feeling betrayed about what he heard from Carol, Clay rushes off with Savannah’s emotionally unstable pimp, Trina (Jillian Bell), to party elsewhere, though Trina is more interested in robbing Clay of his wealth that he is actually keeping on his person. Josh, Tracey, Mary, and Carol race off to save Clay.Jason Bateman and Olivia Munn in Office Christmas Party (2016)Many of the other employees learn about the termination Carol announced earlier. Believing that everyone is to lose their jobs, they throw out and destroy all the company equipment and burn everything in sight, forcing security guard Carla (Da’Vine Joy Randolph) to put down the unruly, now destructive and rebellious party. Clay ends up racing Trina’s car towards an opening drawbridge, attempting to jump the gap, a feat he’d earlier mentioned to Josh. Josh drives Mary’s minivan alongside him, and tries to convince Clay not to jump, but he is still angered and heartbroken from Carol offering Josh the job, as much as remembering her insults. Believing he’s worthless, he still decides to jump, regardless of whether he makes it and lives or dies. After everyone, including Trina, fails to convince Clay to pull over, Josh threatens to jump the gap with him, and Clay reluctantly allows it. Not willing to die, Carol forcefully moves the steering wheel from Josh, causing the car to swerve into Clay’s car, crashing both vehicles. Clay’s car hits an internet hub, disconnecting the entire city.Jason Bateman and T.J. Miller in Office Christmas Party (2016)Trina and Savannah are arrested for their crimes, while Clay is taken to the hospital. In the wake of the internet blackout, Tracey realizes how to run a new innovation she’d been working on for several years that combines internet WiFi with wired connections through the city’s power grid, which had previously failed due to her inability to take the real-world interference of the existing internet signals into account. They race back to the destroyed office to set up her tech, and when it works, internet is restored to Chicago. This new innovation saves the jobs of the entire team, with Clay apologizing for how his father treated Carol. Walter, who is in the same hospital as Clay, agrees to join the team. Josh and Tracey kiss amidst the ruins of their office. Jeremy opens up to Mary, and Nate and Allison agree to go on a date. The whole group meets Carol and Clay as he’s released from the hospital, and they all go out for breakfast, driving recklessly on the way.Jason Bateman and T.J. Miller in Office Christmas Party (2016)Good for a laugh, plus for pointing out how stupid companies (and individuals) have gotten in their aversion to Christmas celebrations.

REVIEW: THE MASTER

Starring

Joaquin Phoenix (Joker)
Philip Seymour Hoffman (Mission: Impossible III)
Amy Adams (Man of Steel)
Laura Dern (Jurassic Park)
Ambyr Childers (2 Guns)
Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody)
Jesse Plemons (Game Night)
Kevin J. O’Connor (Widows)
Christopher Evan (Lincoln)
Madisen Beaty (Other People)
Amy Ferguson (Split)
Patty McCormack (The Bad Seed)
Jillian Bell (Rough Night)
Fiona Dourif (Curse of Chucky)
W. Earl Brown (Bates Motel)

Philip Seymour Hoffman and Joaquin Phoenix in The Master (2012)Freddie Quell is a traumatized World War II veteran, struggling to adjust to post-war society and prone to erratic behavior. While working on a farm in California, an elderly colleague collapses after drinking a batch of Freddie’s homemade moonshine. Freddie flees after he is accused of poisoning him.Joaquin Phoenix in The Master (2012)One night, Freddie finds himself in San Francisco, and stows away on the yacht of a follower of Lancaster Dodd, the leader of a nascent philosophical movement known as “The Cause”. When he is discovered, Dodd describes Freddie as “aberrated”, and invites him to stay and attend the marriage of his daughter, Elizabeth, as long as he will make more moonshine, which Dodd has developed a taste for. Dodd begins an exercise with Freddie called “Processing”, a flurry of disturbing psychological questions. During the exercise, Freddie reveals details of his past, including his fathers’s death, his mother’s incarceration in a mental asylum, and his incestuous sexual encounters with his aunt. He also has a flashback to a past relationship with Doris, a young woman from his hometown who Freddie promised he would one day return to.Amy Adams in The Master (2012)Freddie travels with Dodd’s family as they spread the teachings of “The Cause” along the East Coast. At a dinner party in New York, a man questions Dodd’s methods and statements. Dodd loses his temper, calling the man “pig fuck”, and asks him to leave. Freddie pursues him to his apartment and assaults him that night.
Philip Seymour Hoffman in The Master (2012)Other members of “The Cause” begin to worry about Freddie’s behavior. Freddie criticizes Dodd’s son Val for disregarding his father’s teachings, but Val tells Freddie that Dodd is making things up as he goes along. Dodd is arrested for practicing medicine without proper qualifications after one of his former hostesses has a change of heart; Freddie is also arrested for assaulting the police officers. Freddie erupts in a tirade, questioning everything that Dodd has taught him, and accuses him of being a fake. Dodd calls Freddie lazy and worthless and claims nobody likes him except for Dodd. They reconcile upon their release, but members of “The Cause” have become more suspicious and fearful of Freddie, believing him to be deranged or an undercover agent.Joaquin Phoenix in The Master (2012)Freddie accompanies Dodd to Phoenix, for the release of Dodd’s latest book. When Dodd’s publisher criticizes the quality of the book and its teachings, Freddie assaults him. Helen Sullivan, a previously acquiescent acolyte, causes Dodd to lose his temper after she questions some details of the book. Dodd takes Freddie to a salt flat with his motorcycle, telling him to pick a point in the distance and drive towards it as fast as he can. Freddie drives off and disappears. Freddie returns home to Lynn, Massachusetts, to rekindle his relationship with Doris. Freddie learns from her mother that she has married and started a family since he last saw her. He tells her mother he is glad she is happy.Philip Seymour Hoffman in The Master (2012)While sleeping in a movie theater, Freddie believes he receives a phone call from Dodd, who is now residing in England and begging Freddie to visit. Upon arriving, Freddie finds “The Cause” to have grown ever larger, and to find Dodd seemingly bent to the will of his wife. Not expecting Freddie to stay with him, Dodd requests that if Freddie can find a way to live without a master, any master, to “let the rest of us know” because he’ll be the first person in history to do so. Still seeking closure, Freddie refers to the Dodd from his dream, who had claimed to finally remember where they’d met. Dodd then recounts that, in a past life, they had worked in Paris to send balloons across a blockade created by Prussian forces. Dodd gives him an ultimatum: stay with “The Cause” and devote himself to it for the rest of his life or leave and never return. As Freddie offers that they may meet again in the next life, Dodd claims that if they do, it will be as sworn enemies. Dodd begins singing Slow Boat to China as Freddie begins to cry. Freddie leaves and picks up a woman at a local pub, then repeats questions from his first processing session with Dodd as he is having sex with her. On a beach, Freddie curls up next to a crude sand sculpture of a woman he and his wartime comrades erected during the war.Philip Seymour Hoffman in The Master (2012)The Scientology subject is there and there are connections that can be made but are they obvious or intended? Not necessarily. It’s not evident or offensive. I only hope that Paul Thomas Anderson and the film doesn’t suffer from anyone assuming that its a slight at the group or any particular one for that matter. Though the film takes time to warm up to, once the film soars, it’s soars high. While The Master is not for everyone and there could be many detractors, there are three scenes in particular that are masterpieces in filmmaking. Anderson levels and executes a difficult subject with no fear or hesitation. He also knows his characters, what they are, who they are, and marrying the actors to them in a way not many directors can do. Anderson unites film with art again and The Master is their bond. It’s good to see them together again.

REVIEW: 22 JUMP STREET

 
CAST

Channing Tatum (G.I.Joe)
Jonah Hill (Cyrus)
Ice Cube (Ride Along)
Peter Stormare (Fargo)
Wyatt Russell (Cowboys & Aliens)
Amber Stevens West (Greek)
Jillian Bell (Goosebumps)
Dustin Nguyen (V.I.P.)

 Nick Offerman (Sing)
Marc Evan Jackson (The Good Place)
Johnny Pemberton (Son of Zorn)
Richard Grieco (Impact Event)
H. Jon Benjamin (Wet Hot American Summer)
Anna Faris (Mom)
Will Forte (The Lego Movie)
Dave Franco (Bad Neighbours)
Bill Hader (Power Rangers)
Patton Oswalt (Young Adult)
Queen Latifah (Bringing Down The House)
Rob Riggle (The Hangover)
Seth Rogen (Knocked Up)
Steven Williams (Jason Goes To Hell)

 

Two years following their success in the 21 Jump Street program, Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) are back on the streets chasing narcotics. However, after failing in the pursuit of a group of drug dealers led by Ghost (Peter Stormare), Deputy Chief Hardy (Nick Offerman) puts the duo back on the program to work for Captain Dickson (Ice Cube) – now located across the street at 22 Jump Street. Their assignment is to go undercover as college students and locate the supplier of a drug known as “WHYPHY” (Work Hard, Yes, Play Hard, Yes) that killed a student photographed buying it on campus.
At college, Jenko quickly makes friends with a pair of jocks named Zook (Wyatt Russell) and Rooster (Jimmy Tatro), the latter being a prime suspect of the investigation. Jenko starts attending parties with the jocks who do not take as kindly to Schmidt. Meanwhile, Schmidt gets the attention of an art student, Maya (Amber Stevens), by feigning an interest in slam poetry. The two sleep together, to the disapproval of Maya’s roommate Mercedes (Jillian Bell), and it is revealed that Maya is the daughter of the vehemently disapproving Captain Dickson. Despite sleeping together, Maya tells Schmidt not to take it seriously, and he starts to feel left out as Jenko bonds more and more with Zook who encourages him to join the football team.
When Schmidt and Jenko feel as if they have no clue to who the dealer is because they have no leads, they decide to pay a visit to Mr. Walters (Rob Riggle) and Eric (Dave Franco) in jail for advice on how to look for the WHYPHY supplier. Walters tells the two to look more closely as he notices a unique tattoo on the arm of the dealer in the photograph. He insists that if they find the tattoo, they will have found their man. Whilst hanging out with Zook and Rooster, Jenko notices that Rooster does not have the tattoo but sees it on Zook’s arm. Schmidt and Jenko are invited to join the fraternity led by the jocks but Schmidt refuses, furthering the tension between the two as Jenko passes all the requirements. At a counselling session, they realise that maybe Zook isn’t the dealer but was buying the drugs rather than selling them, and soon afterwards they find Ghost and his men on campus. A chase ensues and Ghost again evades the pair. Jenko reveals to Schmidt that he’s been offered a football scholarship with Zook and is unsure whether he wants to continue to be a police officer. Schmidt decides for him by telling officers on the scene that Jenko had nothing to do with the melee caused by the chase. Immediately afterwards, Schmidt moves out of the dorm and Maya finds out who he really is.
Spring Break arrives and Schmidt prepares to go after Ghost alone. Jenko asks to help so that the two can have one final mission together, and the pair head to the beach where Ghost is likely to be dealing WHYPHY. Inside a bar, they find Mercedes, revealed to be Ghost’s daughter, giving instructions to other dealers. The pair, backed up by Dickson and the rest of Jump Street, ambush the meeting and give chase as they flee. Mercedes is able to handcuff Dickson and take him hostage, pursued by Schmidt. Meanwhile, Jenko goes after Ghost. After a fist fight with Mercedes, Schmidt is held at gunpoint by her but Maya sneaks up and knocks her out. Schmidt goes to help Jenko who is now on a hotel roof in pursuit of Ghost, and inadvertently shoots Jenko in the shoulder. Ghost attempts to escape in a helicopter and Jenko jumps across to it but struggles to hold on with his injured arm. Schmidt makes the same jump and the two fall into the sea, but not before Jenko is able to throw a grenade into the helicopter, supposedly killing Ghost.
Back on land, Jenko tells Schmidt that he still wants to be a police officer as he believes their differences help their partnership, and the two reconcile in front of a cheering crowd. Dickson approaches them claiming to have a new mission undercover at a med school. During the credits, Jenko and Schmidt go on to a variety of undercover missions to different school, which are portrayed as fictional sequels, an animated series, and a toy line. One mission features Detective Booker (Richard Grieco) while another sees the return of Ghost, who survived the helicopter explosion. In a post-credits scene, Walters reveals to Eric that he’s late.
22 Jump Street is a prime example of how to do a sequel right. Directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller took everything from the first and made it better with an intelligently creative script and a bigger budget. This is a comedy that never once was afraid to make fun of itself or the genre. You could also really tell that Hill and Tatum had a blast making this film, because it shows it in their performances. Who really steals the show is Ice Cube as he has a lot more screen time. If you are looking for a hilarious time at the movies this year, then 22 Jump Street is a must see movie.

REVIEW: BRIDESMAIDS

CAST

Kristen Wiig (Zoolander 2)
Maya Rudolph (Gattaca)
Rose Byrne (Spy)
Melissa McCarthy (Tammy)
Wendi McLendon-Covey (Bewitched)
Ellie Kemper (The Office)
Chris O’Dowd (St. Vincent)
Jill Cayburgh (The Rockford Files)
Terry Crews (White Chicks)
Matt Lucas (Alice Through The Looking Glass)
Ben Falcone (The Nines)
Jessica St. Clair (The Dictator)
Jon Hamm (The A-Team)
Paul Feig (Sabrina: TTW)
Rebel Wilson (Grimsby)
Jillian Bell (Rough Night)

Rose Byrne and Kristen Wiig in Bridesmaids (2011)

Though Wiig has popped up recently in Whip It and Adventureland, to fine successes, Bridesmaids marks her first leading performance, and she’s found the right one to start with in Annie. A broke, cynical chef who’s recently closed her Milwaukee bakery, losing her boyfriend in the process, she now works in a jewelry store, sleeps with a handsome but asinine man-child (Jon Hamm) looking for a no-strings sex-buddy, and avoids her odd British brother-sister roommates. Annie’s sad-sap state makes for a near-perfect character in which Wiig can flaunt her ill-at-ease style, uncomfortable in her unerring self-created awkwardness. She’s a sad character, almost aggressively so, which might rub some the wrong way because of how resolutely she keeps herself at arm’s length from contentment. Yet there’s something relatable about her self-deprecation, especially once her childhood friend Lillian (Maya Rudolph) asks her to be the maid-of-honor at her wedding — and to do the planning and organizing that comes with the territory.

Naturally, Annie meets an eclectic group of Lillian’s friends and soon-to-be family who will fill out the rest of the wedding court: a sex-minded mom (Wendi McLendon-Covey, Reno 911) with a ton of kids and a biting attitude; a virginal mouse of a newlywed (Ellie Kempler, The Office); bullish sparkplug Meghan (Melissa McCarthy, Mike and Molly), the government-employed sister to the groom; and Helen (Rose Byrne, Get Him to the Greek), a well-to-do housewife trying to strong-arm her way into Annie’s spot as maid-of-honor. Feig realizes that these are all types, and he lets them run loose with their quirky mannerisms, but he doesn’t go too outlandish to make them feel like far-removed caricatures.


Annie’s rattled by the duties and the feeling that her friend’s slipping away, not to mention her own monetary and relationship woes, which zigzags along the significant events in Bridesmaids that hallmark most pre-wedding lead-ups. Sure, if you want to boil it down to the least-common denominator, Feig’s picture can essentially be labeled a female iteration of The Hangover, where the ritual of strippers, alcohol, and wild partying in the groom’s rite of passage are replaced with luncheons, dress-fittings, and bridal showers. But this isn’t a frilly affair, nor is it simply a fantastical lampoon on idealized planning. Compliments of Wiig and Mumolo’s sharply-written script, Lillian’s path down the aisle turns into a stylized elevated-reality daze of misfortune, often due to her best-friend trying to cling onto what she finds familiar by her own means. But it’s got something else behind its gags: when it hits over-the-top notes that play to the dreamed-up fantasies of weddings and the gleeful pre-events, it also double-backs to Annie’s shambled life, lending genuineness to the missteps she makes.

Rose Byrne, Melissa McCarthy, Maya Rudolph, Wendi McLendon-Covey, Kristen Wiig, and Ellie Kemper in Bridesmaids (2011)
Maybe it’s because the humor’s supported by a heartfelt backbone that it’s both effective and affective, extending beyond its gags into this clever, modest portrait of a woman in a growing stage that just so happens to be hysterically funny. Annie’s shown at her most desperate — sleeping with a slimeball, losing her penniless and destitute battle with the rich-and-beautiful Helen, and slowly but unsuccessfully building a relationship with an affable cop, Rhodes (Chris O’Dowd), who’s got a thing for carrots — and her state informs the hoopla that Wiig and Mumolo have written, always with some underlying purpose that ties back to the lowly baker trying to maintain a stranglehold on her old life. Bridesmaids might be out to prove that the girls are capable of playing just as dirty as the guys.