At this point you know what you’re getting with the “Fast and the Furious” movie series, but they also seem to be thinking of new ways to get ridiculous. While you can’t really expect realism with these movies (seriously, gravity does not exist in this world), “Fate of the Furious” reaches new heights of absurdity that it becomes comical; and not the good kind of comical, either. Where James Bond had “Die Another Day” where he surfed a tsunami on a plane door and parachute, “The Fate of the Furious” has its own “jump the shark” moment. But this one involves a missile chasing a car, and Dwayne Johnson merely leaning out of a high speed car and pushing the missile away with his hand, allowing it to divert in to the car of a bad guy. It’s that point where I realized that it’s about time for the series to come to an end.
Like many others in Los Angeles, Josh is an unpaid intern desperately trying to make it. When his boss has him go pick up a highly valuable necklace, he figures he’ll save some time and picks it up early. While the necklace is in his possession, his housemates through a party that quickly turns to a home invasion. Co-written by Jamie Marshall and Matthew L. Schaffer with Marshall also directing, the film builds a home invasion/heist story with double crosses and not one clear cut innocent character.
Johnny Depp has never been one to be defined as a comedy genius of any sort, and it’s pretty telling of that fact when the one gag he has to ride on throughout “Mortdecai” is his mustache and how it twirls. That’s basically the defining comedic element of Mortdecai. He’s painfully proud of his mustache despite the obvious disgust by his loving wife, and he takes great pride of flashing it around. He even gleams proudly when he finds himself in America packed in to an elevator with men donning mustaches and beards of their own. That’s what counts as comedy in the painfully unfunny “Mortdecai.”
“Ant Man” seems like a stand alone superhero effort at first, but it fits comfortably in the pegs of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It also introduces us to a wonderful superhero who, by all logic, should not have translated in to such a great film. Surely enough, with a script by Edgar Wright (and various others) and an excellent cast (including a welcome Hispanic presence), “Ant Man” is one of the best adaptations of Marvel’s Phase Two in their Cinematic Universe. Like every hero in the Marvel Universe, “Ant-Man” is just an average man thrust in to great circumstances, and he has to earn his stripes as a crime fighter while overcoming his own flaws and insecurities.
“It’s never goodbye…”
It’s shocking that not only is “Fast & Furious 7” not only the best entry in the series yet, but it’s also one of the best movies of the year. It’s exciting, it’s engrossing, it’s fun, and goddamn, it’s a heartbreaking last go around for Paul Walker. I say this as someone who openly hated these movies after the first film, but here I am years later, getting teary eyed at the end of a “Fast & Furious” film. In fact, this is also one of the most human sequels of the series, since it deals a lot with consequence, and revenge. Shortly after “Fast 6,” the group finds out that their latest heist has granted them a death ticket. The brother of Owen Shaw (Luke Evans) has come to wreak unholy vengeance on Dominic Toretto and his crew.
Unlike “The Expendables,” which purports to bring all stars together and pit them against perilous circumstances, “Fast and the Furious” is the film accomplishing the concept. It’s rid itself of the pretenses of being a franchise, and has embraced the fact that each movie is just a two hour episode of an extended series, and has brought together all of the best stars from the previous movies of the “Fast and the Furious” movies. It even has its own opening credits. And what’s more is that the stakes are raised more and more with each movie right down to the potential for a child’s life being risked.
If anything, what makes “The Babymakers” such a tolerable bad movie is that Olivia Munn is gorgeous. Granted, she’s yet another “I’m hot but I’m edgy and funny, too!” actress in Hollywood, but in “The Babymakers” she mostly plays it straight. Munn is a beautiful and often sexy woman who glows in this film, and she serves her purpose as the woman character Tommy Mackland is desperate to please. Hey, if I were married to character Audrey, I’d be dipping my testicles on a pot of stew, too. Munn is mainly a straight man for the comedy, who spends most of the movie longing for a baby of her own, and tries to remain faithful to Tommy, who is a well meaning and mild mannered man with a lot to offer. Sure, he’s another comedy loser, but he has a good job, and a lot of courage when it comes to standing his ground. He’s a man you can respect, and somewhat pity. Because I guess pity is funny and respect is not.
Dreamscapes and the sub-conscious can be an often marvelous subject matter for the discerning creative mind primarily because it’s a realm that is vast and wondrous but incredibly mysterious. After so many decades and centuries of research and exploration’s in to our brains, many scholars and professionals still have no real clue as to where dreams come from, why they exist, where we go when we dream, and whether or not they’re supposed to actually reveal anything. Christopher Nolan has created a Lynchian fantasy set in the mind that is devastating in its originality and innovation taking the dream world and turning it in to one giant landscape upon which to draw a story that is simultaneously a heist film and an existential drama about a man confronting his demons that he has locked away in his dreams for as long as he can remember.