Sin City: A Dame to Kill For (2014)

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It must either be really wise decision making, or a really weird coincidence that Eva Green stars in two Frank Miller based projects in 2014, both of which are pretty much just god awful cash grabs of their former films, and she ends up being about the best aspect of both films. Green really stole “Rise of an Empire” from everyone, and here she seems to embrace the absurdity in the incredibly rancid “A Dame to Kill For.” I’m not going to say I’m disappointed that “A Dame to Kill For” is awful, mainly because I didn’t ask for a sequel and I didn’t want one. I likened “Sin City” to Robert Rodriguez’s own wonky version of “Pulp Fiction.”

Do we need a sequel to “Pulp Fiction”? Hell no.

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The Expendables 3 (2014)

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One of the most idiotic moments in “The Expendables 3” is when villain Stonebanks is taunting our heroes on a television monitor, explaining that he’s wired the stronghold where he has the Junior Expendables with C4. While watching on the monitor, character Wifi (Glen Powell) completely overrides the C4 from blowing everyone to smithereens. If that’s not enough Barney plans the get away operation for the group while Stonebanks watches on the TV. So how does he still lose if Barney is stupid enough to plan an escape while the bad guy is watching only a few inches away? It’s moments like that that show Stallone really isn’t interested in details with these movies anymore.

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Die Hard with a Vengeance (1995)

I’m of the opinion that had this film been created under its original title “Simon Says,” that it could have been a wonderful action thriller with a new franchise start. But as a continuation of the “Die Hard” series it’s a strong and unique sequel. Sure it drops off in the climax, but for the first half of this action thriller, “Die Hard with a Vengeance” is a unique and fresh new direction for a series in a rut. The first film is a classic, and the second is arguably entertaining, so it’s interesting that this film chooses instead to mostly be cerebral in its delivery and villain. Rather than John McClane crawling around ducts and hiding in corners, he spends the entirety of the film running around a crowded New York city during the summer trying to defuse brilliant bombs.

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Kevin Smith: Cop Outs, Sycophants, and Self-Destruction

For The Record: This initial essay was prepared in early 2010 and held back in favor of many other articles, but in lieu of Kevin Smith’s new horror film, and the effect my thoughts on Smith had on my writing career of late, I feel this is an apt sign off for 2010, and feel free to offer your own rebuttals.

2010 has been a pretty historic year for movie buffs.

No I’m not talking about the release of “Iron Man 2” or the surge of 3D films, no 2010 will stand as the year that Kevin Smith officially lost his mind and self-destructed before our very eyes. The man who built a legacy on his love for comic books and his ability to create some of the most beloved indie comedies of all time while building a massive fan base of supporters has managed to completely destroy everything he’s set for himself in a matter of literal months. And it was quite astonishing to follow if you were been up to date on Smith’s activities online. I’ve hated mostly everything the man has made but even I couldn’t turn away from the display that is worthy of a reality show on VH1.

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Live Free or Die Hard: Unrated Version (2007)

So, I opted on the DVD to watch the Unrated version, which sported a few F bombs and a little more edge. I’m sure the Rated and Unrated version probably didn’t sport many differences, but I owed it to myself to give the Unrated version the top priority. I won’t babble about Die Hard, or why the PG-13 rating is stupid, instead I’ll talk about Mary Elizabeth Winstead. This girl is absolutely gorgeous and sure, she may not be Meryl Streep, but she’s definitely one of the finer girls in film today and I dig her role her as John McClane’s daughter Lucy who is, like her dad, rebellious, smart mouthed, and always seems to stare evil down the throat with a smirk.

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Unbreakable (2000)

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This is, to put it plainly, my current favorite film of all time.

Let me count the ways:

Cinematography. It’s experimental without being art kitschy. If there’s one thing that M. Night seems to get, it’s a good director of photography. The man knows how to frame a scene. A lot of that, I assume, is just like writing a book. Practice. And M. Night, judging from the early age at which he started making films, has a lot of practice. There are a number of angles in this film that just stick with you. The scene in the train from the perspective of the child. The scene from above the weights, giving the audience weight on the main character. The scene in the rapist’s home where you see the rapist suddenly appear. Willis in frame in his Security Outfit, as superhero as a superhero movie gets.

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