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Reject nature with a Penguins of Madagascar review

Penguins of Madagascar review

Plot

They played it pretty safe with the story, and stuffed it with plenty of mild-chuckle-worthy jokes…the best being the “celebrities whose last names sound like verbs” running gag.

Characters

The penguins were meant to be silly supporting characters. Having them carry this movie on their own made it feel like something was missing.

Visuals

The characters in the Madagascar films have a very distinct, angular look to them. This one felt a little more like a generic Dreamworks movie, which isn’t all that bad.

Product Placement

Cheezy Dibbles aren’t real, but it is fun to say.

Rewatchability

If I do watch it again, I’m going to make sure there aren’t any loud, annoying teenagers nearby like this time.

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Get out of my house, it’s an Adventures in Babysitting review

Adventures in Babysitting review

Plot

If only I’d seen this before I saw The Sitter, then I’d know where the latter stole its entire premise from.

Characters

If only I’d known that Elisabeth Shue (a.k.a. “The Main Reason I Like The Karate Kid“) was in this movie, I’d have watched it a lot sooner.

Visuals

You know what I usually say about older movies being hard to judge from a visuals standpoint? It applies here, too.

Product Placement

Cap’n Crunch again? Crunch candy bars this time, too. It’s a regular Crunchfest around here.

Oh, and there was Coke all over the place.

Rewatchability

It probably could have been about 10 minutes shorter.

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This Birth review is not your stupid son anymore

Birth review

Plot

Dialog delivered in a serious manner, minimal use of music, dramatic pauses…This is how you make a suspenseful, scare-free thriller.

Characters

Hey, look. It’s Cameron Bright, a.k.a. “The Creepy Kid in Every Movie”.

If I said before that any other Nicole Kidman role was my favorite, then forget it. This is the one cancels out all the rest.

Visuals

This movie has a very unique sepia-toned-yet-full-color thing going on.

Product Placement

Nope.

Rewatchability

It’s not often that watching a movie makes me feel sophisticated.

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Yuck it up, clowns. It’s a Drive Me Crazy review

Drive Me Crazy review

Plot

All of the predictable story beats were there**, but it got a little confusing at times in between.

**Sometimes, predictability can be a good thing.

Characters

I don’t see why Melissa Joan Hart’s movie career never took off. Her character here was just as enjoyable as anyone else in any other movie like this.

Visuals

Yeah, yeah. It looks just like it’s supposed to. Move along.

Product Placement

They almost started a makeover montage in the Gap store, but it fizzled out pretty quickly.

Rewatchability

Darn my penchant for romantic comedies. I apparently even like the ones that don’t completely make sense.

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I can’t be here for this Confidence review

Confidence review

Plot

Having the main character spend the movie telling the audience how he told the guy who killed him how his last con didn’t work out was almost as confusing to type as it was to watch.

Characters

Andy Garcia didn’t show up until the movie was halfway over. Good thing Paul Giamatti was there to pick up the slack beforehand.

Visuals

The movie definitely gave off an Ocean’s 11 vibe, but it worked.

Product Placement

There were some cleverly-placed things, such as the Nike bag they had the money in, and the Red Bull truck the main character got punched into repeatedly.

Rewatchability

If you know how the con happens, it’s not quite as fun to watch a second time.

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This Catch .44 review is the business of my heart

Catch .44 review

Plot

Non-linear storytelling doesn’t work if it just makes the movie feel like the DVD is set to shuffle.

Characters

Admittedly, these are some of the most unusual (in a good way) Bruce Willis and Forest Whitaker roles I’ve come across.

Visuals

The opening credits (sort of) interacted with the scenery, and there were plenty of unusual camera angles.

Product Placement

They managed to show a gas station, a convenience store, and a diner without anything in them for me to pretend not to notice. I’m impressed!

Rewatchability

This movie left me feeling miserable.

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This The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 review burns with us

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 review

Plot

There were so many great opportunities for this movie to end on a suspenseful “tune in next time for the exciting conclusion!” note, but they just kept going.

At least there weren’t any actual Hunger Games in this one, though.

Characters

Elizabeth Banks, Julianne Moore and Woody Harrelson balanced out the Jennifer Lawrence’s lifeless “I can’t believe I signed on for 4 of these” performance.

Visuals

People seem to like it when I warn about intense flashing light sequences, so here you go. There was a bit of one during the stairs sequence.

Product Placement

There wasn’t any, but while we’re here…Why does all the technology in these movies look like it was designed by Dr. Seuss?

Rewatchability

I’ve never seen a movie so dependent on the others in the series. This movie would make no sense by itself, and I’m certainly not going to suffer through the first two again just to see it.

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Absolute silence while I fall into this 22 Jump Street review

22 Jump Street review

Plot

Yes, it was funny, but the repetitive “we’re aware of what’s going on, and we know we did this before” thing got kind of old.

Characters

H. Jon Benjamin was severely underused, but there’s no denying that Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill have a lot of fun working together.

Visuals

The drug trip scene had some fun effects going on.

Product Placement

Cerveza beer is a fake brand that’s used in a lot of movies and TV shows, and that’s perfectly okay.

The point was taken off for all the other stuff.

Rewatchability

This movie wore me out. I was ready for it to be over when there were still 30 minutes left.

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An Earth to Echo review for your kissing buddy

Earth to Echo review

Plot

The whole movie felt like a Final Fantasy fetch quest, frantically cobbled-together (i.e. “stolen”) from several other movies.

Characters

I wonder if anyone ever tells the kid who played Munch that he looks like Sean Astin.

It’s hard to believe that the kid from A Walk Among the Tombstones and the main kid in this movie are the same person.

Visuals

Ugh. Why did this have to be shot “found footage” style?

Product Placement

This movie did not take advantage of the multitude of opportunities this format provides.

Rewatchability

This is the first movie that has made me feel old and out of touch with the younger generation.

It was difficult to keep up with its hectic pace and constant barrage of imagery.

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This Dedication review is my window into beauty

Dedication review

Plot

The writers mistook inconsistency for quirkiness.

Characters

The best romantic comedies give off “there’s no way these two can end up together” vibes early on.

All this one did was give off “I don’t want these two to end up together” vibes the whole time.

Visuals

I didn’t quite get the purpose behind the flashing jump cuts.

Product Placement

I didn’t see anything, but I’m no expert. Maybe I missed something.

Rewatchability

Not even several Cat Power songs in the soundtrack could redeem this one.

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