Name: Neals_reviews

Most Recent Reviews by Neals_reviews

Moon

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Reviewed by Neals_reviews

Marooned on the dark side of the moon, Sam Bell (Sam Rockwell) starts seeing things - himself. When he crashes his lunar rover on a mission, he awakens to find his sealed outpost repopulated with another version of himself. Director Duncan Jones was obviously highly influenced by the classic 2001. Sam Rockwell doesn't fail to amuse in this quirky tale, the whole movie is centered on him I think he's a very underated actor who shines quite brightly in this dark film. The movie taps on issues dealing with the nature of human experience, isolation & coping with technology in the near future. An interesting story worth viewing for an hour & a half.


Neal Damiano
Film Critic

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The Proposal

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Reviewed by Neals_reviews


Romantic comedies are predictable most of the time, so it's how we get there that matters "The Proposal" seemed to be getting there with some flames & creativity. Headed by a couple of actors that are not new to the comedic genre. Sandra Bullock & Ryan Reynolds are both well fit for clever bantor, they play off each other quite well right of the top. Although I'm not a huge fan of Sandra Bullock her chemistry with Ryan Reynolds is right on.
Margaret(Bullock) is a high powered book editor who is facing deplortation to her hometown of Canada unless she comes up with a plan. A quick thinking exec declares she get engaged to her unsuspecting assistant Andrew (Reynolds) who she has tormented for years. He agrees to help but not without a few conditions of his own. The put on couple heads to Alaska to meet his eccentric family & the big wig city girl finds herself in a fish out of water scenario.
Funny moments ensue but the director Anne Fletcher crushes any good will it forms when it takes a predictable turn towards gushy.

Neal Damiano
Film Critic

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State of Play

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Reviewed by Neals_reviews


The political thriller State Of Play is one for the time capsule, a homage to print journalism that is being released at a time when newspapers are gliding into obscurity. It feels like a political thriller on a certain level but superficially it is the murder of a young woman. A rising congressman's mistress that drives the story. Russell Crowe plays Cal McAffrey who represents the last of the old school journalists & also happens to be good friends with the politician in question, Stephen Collins (Ben Affleck). Cal's & the congressman's shady interests are revealed when the police & the Washington Post investigate the killing.
Crowe completely delves into the character, however he & Affleck never feel like a good match for each other. For one the age difference is hard to ignore to believe they're college roomates. Second the chemistry never seems to blend.

Neal Damiano
Film Critic

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The Haunting of Molly Hartley

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Reviewed by Neals_reviews



Mickey Liddell’s directorial debut The Haunting of Molly Hartley is anything but haunting as it fails to even scare. A cross between Rosemary’s Baby & the Excercist but falls short of scary. This film is like watching a possessed episode of 90210 & loses its flavor faster than a stick of bubble gum. The film centers around a girl trying to find out if she’s the devils spawn or if her mother is just completely out of her mind. Molly (Haley Bennett) is turning 18 very soon, but despite the fact that she has near perfect skin & enrolled in the most prestigious private school in New York her life is anything but perfect. Her mother was recently institutionalized after trying to stop her daughter from eternal damnation with a pair of scissors. Adjusting to a new school & her mother locked up in a mental institution aren’t the only troubles facing Molly. She is being haunted daily with visions of her murderous mother & hearing voices from beyond.
Molly is also being outcast at school because of her romance with the popular Joseph Young (Chase Crawford). Fellow outcast, the bible preaching Alexis (Shanna Collins) is trying to convert Molly to Christianity. Her guidance counselor insists that the weird hallucinations are nothing more than effects from her recent trauma. As her visions grow stronger each day, she is forced to consider that her fate was sealed the day she was born. The story is very predictable even for a supernatural plot & the acting is weak. It seems the film is loaded with moments to make the viewer jump in substitute for an interesting plot. The themes are there, a girl dealing with issues of religion & salvation but it lacks anything interesting or new.

Neal Damiano
Film Critic

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Gran Torino

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Reviewed by Neals_reviews

Clint Eastwood is known for playing the classic antihero that we all love in Gran Torino he’s no different. Eastwood redefines what it is to be a grumpy old man here with his trademark Dirty Harry snarl & grunts.
Walt Kowalski is a marine veteran & retired auto worker & an unapologetic bigot. Who just lost his wife while his discontent for society grows stronger so does his alienation from a world literally becoming foreign. Walt spends his time tending his house in a Detroit suburb, drinking beers, & cleaning his most treasured posession a vintage 72 Gran Torino which he helped assemble at Ford plant where he used to work.
He’s the only white man in a neighborhood filled with Asians, Hispanics, & African-Americans. Walt hates all - he despises his own family as much as the trash as he puts it that pollute his street. One night in a twist of fate Walt catches the son of his neighbors trying to steal his cherished car. Instead of hurting the boy or calling the police Walt decides to protect him from the gang bangers that forced him into robbery. The boy in gratitude agrees to work for Walt doing odd jobs & they form an unlikely bond. The storyline is predictable the characters all too familiar but you can’t help to watch Eastwoods charisma he radiates on film & is very believable in this character.

Neal Damiano
Film Journalist

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