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100 Movies Challenge

#83 Pompeii
I watched for Jon Snow and the hopes of something near history...well, one out of two ain't bad.

#84 Filth
James McAvoy - Wow! I didnt actually see the twist coming, but i obviously should have. This is quite a sad movie all & all, but definitely worth the watch. If you've not everyone's cup of tea, but if you've seen In Brudges and liked it, you will definitely like this.

#85 The Maze Runner
Read the book when i found out that Dylan OBrien was going to llay the lead. A sci-fi cross between Hunger Games and Temple Run, but i enjoyed it anyway. Some talented young actors.

#86 The Conspirator
Another James McAvoy. This was a very interesting, in depth look at the murder of A Lincoln. McAvoy plays the lawyer assigned to defend the mother of one of the men who conspired to commit the multiple murders that were attempted that night. I highly recommend this film to history junkies.

#87 Matilda
I've seen parts of this (specifically that salamander scene) but had never sat down and watched the entire thing. Love it. Wonderful, imaginative story that weve all written in our heads when we were mad at our parents and wanted to run away. I know she's all grown up now, but the young actress who plays Matilda is so much fun to watch.

#88 Thank You for Sharing
This was not what i expected. Not that i know what i was expecting. Mark Ruffalo plays a sex addict who is both mentored and mentor. Follows the stuggles of three men in three very different places in their recovery. Very moving and very entertaining. Highly recommend!

#89 Big Hero 6
One of my favorite NEW movies this year. A Marvel comic animatef by Disney. So very fun and yet there were several times i was brought to tears. Fun for the whole family.

#90 That Awkward Moment
The exact opposite of a chick flick and so entertaining. My whole family watched (minus the kids - Rated R for a reason, folks) and enjoyed!

#91 Gravity
i know there were mixed reviews on this film, but i enjoyed it for what it was. A scary-ass possibility that would most definitely have me seriously considering suicide. Thank God I'm not an aastronaut! This had me on the edge of my seat most of the time. For that it gets an above average grade.

#92 Prince of Egypt
Forget watching Exodus. Watch Prince of Egypt instead. Biblically more accurate and very well done!

#93 Hunger Games: Mocking Jay
Everything i hoped it would be. Patiently waiting til next year.

#94 The Guilt Trip
I enjoy the hell out of Seth Rogen, but ive never seen him in this type of a role. Loved it. Perfect mother and son trip across the country with the hopes of reconnecting her with the love of her life, and instead the reconnect in their own relationship. Very sweet, very funny and just the right amount of touching.

#95 Our Idiot Brother
i actually avoided this movie for a very long time because of the original trailer. It looked to me like Paul Rudd trying very hard to do a Will Farrell movie and i cant stand Will Farrell. But something made me turn it on that night and i loved every last minute of it. Turns out the brother isnt the idiot of the family after all.

#96 Hobbit - BOTFA
I love my Tolkien books, but im no purist. That said, there are a few things i would change about this movie if i could. But it's got nothing to do with staying true to the book. I'm one of those that agrees with Pete and Fran and Phillipa; these movies had to be expanded beyond the written "Hobbit" material. Im very happy that the dove into the LoTR appendices to get more background info. It really helped to fill the story. The thing i disagree with is how they divided the films up. Im not sure this could have been accomplished in two films, but the beginning of the third film didnt feel right. It didnt have the same flow as any of the previous 5 films. I really wish they could have finished the Smaug story in the 2nd movie and then moved on the finish the tale. But...i still loved it. And i cant wait to be able to marathon all six movies in succession.

#97 World War Z
I'm not a fan of scary movies. I even have a hard time watching TWD. So I've never felt the need to watch this movie. But im glad i did. This was a really gripping tale and a terrifying premise. And im reminded of how good of an actor Brad Pitt actually is. He's not just a pretty face. He was just very believable in this role. Highly recommend!

#98 The World's End
Throw a whole bunch of English blokes into a pub house circuit, add aliens and much fun!

#99 Homefront
Need to watch this one again, because i came in to the movie just a tish late. Definitely one my dad would enjoy and for that matter, my whole family. Action packed, ex DEA agent/father (dude from Transporter who is Awesome ) faces off against meth-cooking James Franco.

#100 Grand Budapest Hotel
Everyone says it's really good and it IS! But bring your attention span as this is fast paced and the dialog tends to go in very fast circles. So many great actors, but Ralph Fiennes is just perfect as is his little protégé. Their chemistry is so much fun to watch. I'm glad i saved this one for last!

Wow! I cant believe I managed to get this all accomplished. 100 movies in one year. It's not actually as difficult as I thought it would be, but it did push me to make choices i might not have normally made. But now it's 2015 and time to find a new challenge!

100 Movies Challenge

#65 Anna Karina
I've never read or watched this title before, so I wasn't sure what to expect. I just knew that it was a costume period drama with Keira Knightly in it. But it was better than that. It was a reunion of the Pride and Prejudice duo or Keira and Matthew MacFayden minus the crazy intense chemistry because they're planning siblings. This is a tragic romance, doomed from the start. Anna's husband is played by Jude Law and her lover is played by the kid from Kick Ass...I had to double check. What I really found interesting about this film was how it was set up to look like a play. They were definitely playing on stage sets, using the rafters to give vertical depth and layers to each location. It was really impressive. This is definitely worth a watch.

#66 Guardians of the Galaxy
Marvel has stepped up to the bat twice this year and hit two gland slams; at least in my opinion. This movie was so much fun. Action packed, great origin story, fantastic music and even better actors. Very impressed by Dave Batista playing Drax, I completely forgot that Rocket was played by Bradley Cooper, - he's that good, Gamora needs more back story, Chris Pratt IS Star Lord and you can't help but fall in love with Groot. LOVED IT!

#67 Vehicle 19
A Paul Walker movie that is just one step away from his Fast and the Furious movies. This is about a guy who techically jumps parole and flies to Johannesburg to try and win back his estranged wife, but instead finds himself caught up in a political war/high speed car chase. It's all kinds of unbelievable and yet, I couldnt walk away from it. If you're a huge Walker fan, then you'll enjoy this; otherwise, find another film more worth your time.

#68 Small Town Saturday Night
Same as above, except this is me in search of Chris Pine movies. Small town kid, wants to go to Nashville to find his 'big break'. This story has lots of relationship twists that might have been better if they'd had time to develop in a tv series rather than in a 2 hour movie. I love me some Chris Pine, so it wasn't a waste of my time, but this doesn't rank in even my top half of movies.

#69 Into the Storm
Not the tornado movie that's coming out, but a moving piece about Prime Minister Winston Churchill during his service at World War III. Brendan Gleeson is one of my favorite British actors (I was extremely glad he didn't die in this film as he tends to die in everything I see him in) and Iain Glen (Jorah Mormont) was King George VI. I didn't expect to be so moved at the end of this film, but I absolutely was. If you're a history buff, this is a great film to add to your list.

#70 Ender's Game
I was intrigued by this movie when it first came out, but never got around to watching, but JJ checked it out from the library for us to watch and I have to admit, I'm glad I waited. This was definitely a movie to watch with my kid. Based on a book (or maybe even a series of books) that I'm pretty sure my kid will want to read now, which is all kinds of good and makes me happy. Premise behind it is, the world has been attacked by an alien species. We fought them off, but now we're sending specially gifted kids (including Ender) into space to train for future attacks. The bad thing is the movie left off in a bit of a cliffhanger and I dont believe there'll be a second.

#71 Frozen
I fought this...Oh, how I fought this, but I was home alone one night and it was on and i gave into temptation...and I enjoyed the hell out of it. And I totally see what this was all about.

#72 Veronica Mars
I've never seen the show, but teriwithbraids and nessaky are such big fans and talked on and on about it. So, the same night I watched Frozen, I watched Veronica Mars too. Knowing nothing about the show didn't keep from enjoying the movie. And I am more than impressed with their fanbase for getting this movie made.

#73 Wayne's World
This falls under the 'I haven't watched in over ten years' category. But, it was JJ's first time watching this movie and at one point he was in tears, laughing so hard. This movie remains a classic!

#74 The Losers
The A-Team with a whole bunch of hot guys. Done deal.

#75 Austenville
Super cute. Keri Russell is a Jane Austen uber-fan & takes the vacation that all of us Jane Austen uber-fans would love to take.

#76 Free Birds
One of JJ's picks, this was surprisingly entertaining. 2 turkeys travel back in time to get turkey off the Thanksgiving menu. JJ was so please with himself for guessing the post credits scene, and I was tickled that it involved Turducken. 😄

#77 Tower Heist
Ben Stiller & Eddie Murphy team up in the action packed comedy when Ben's character (a hotel manager) goes head to head with penthouse tenant/financial investor (Alan Alda) who embezzels the life savings of all the hotel employees.

#78 Leap Year
Amy Adams travels to Ireland to propse to her longtime boyfriend on Leap Day, but gets sidelined by a string of bad luck. Romantic comedy that explores the beautiful Irish country.

#79 Boxtrolls
Interesting look to this film. Claymation meets steampunk. Fun movie, although I'll admit that some of it was hard to hear/understand. Lots of Little kids at this movie & it really managed to keep their attention. The best part, though, was something all the kids saw coming but none of the adults suspected. It's fantastic when all the parents in theatre gasp in disgust at once.

#80 The Flying Scotsman
True story about Scottish amatuer cyclist who takes the one hour long distance - twice - all while battling the cycling officials & his own bipolar disorder.

#81 Rush
Another true sports story based on an Austrian Formula One driver & the rivalry with a British driver that nearly kills him. This was really good and not at all centered on Chris Hemsworth's character like the trailer & Dvd cover lead you to believe. Although there is a strange friendship that develops between the rivals that is intriguing.

#82 Tremors 3
This one is for zara_zee and cassiopeia7.
There's a marathon playing today. I missed most of #2, so I can't count it, but I did watch all of #3. You know, I thought, the first one is entertaing, but why the Hell would they make THREE more? Number 3 is worth it. Just a ridiculous as the first & lots of fun. of these swallows a damn cow. We wrote that!

I've only got 18 more to go for the year and a whole mess of movies coming out that I want see.

100 Movies Challenge

#54 Trance
James McAvoy and Rosario Dawson
I'm a sucker for James McAvoy. Have been since I first saw him in SyFy's Children of Dune back in 2003. McAvoy plays Simon, an art auctioneer who gets mixed up in a scheme to steal a multi-million dollar painting, but when the painting goes missing during the heist and Simon ends up injured with amnesia, they seek out the help of a hypnotherapist (Dawson's character) to help retrieve it. This was one of those films that you really have to pay attention to, because the minute you think you have it figured out, they throw you a curveball and it up-ends your entire theory. In fact, this was very much like McAvoy's Wanted. (He must have a type.) Anyway, this film is action packed and kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time. Just make sure you have no distractions when watching it.

#55 Belle
It was one of those Friday nights, when my plans fell through after I'd already told my family that I'd be late coming home, so instead of showing up early and sitting around all night, I stopped in Grundy to see what was playing. And to my delight, Belle was playing. I've been wanting to see Belle for a few weeks, but didn't figure it would come to any of the theatres around here. Obscure, costume drama with a quiet cast...I can count on one hand the number of people I know in Waterloo who would want to see it and all of them would wait til it was out on Netflix. But I LOVE costume dramas!!! LOVE LOVE LOVE them! And this 18th Century period drama fit the bill for me to a T.
Gugu Mbatha-Raw plays Dido Elizabeth Belle, a mixed race daughter of a Royal Naval Admiral who is left to be raised by her great uncle. The mixed race aspect of this story is really the thing that sets it off from any other costume drama. 18th Century England is going through an abolitionist period, but slavery is still legal and although she is a free woman and from a wealthy family, Dido is faced with the difficulties of having to accept someone below her station or live her life as a spinster. One of the fun things about this film is seeing Tom Felton as a bad guy again, and LORD, he's bad. What an asshole! I really loved this film. It has a very Mansfield Park feel to it and that makes me love it all the more.

#56 Stars in Shorts
Shorts is available on Netflix. I'd been wanting to see it for a little while, if only because I love some of the actors in it, but hadn't been able to find it until now. So basically, it's two hours of movie shorts. Some are as short as 5 mins, others as long as 15, and each of them feature well-known actors. I'll admit, I wasn't as entertained as I'd hoped to be. I only really enjoyed one or two of the shorts, but I'm glad I got the chance to watch it.

#57 Blended
This is another Adam Sandler/Drew Barrymore movie and it is SOOO adorable! We took the kids to go see it. After every movie, we always go around the car and say what we liked best. It's my way of teaching my kiddo to have open discussions after movies and right now, it feels like a game to the kids. Leave it to my kid though. When asked what his favorite part was, he didn't hesitate. "My favorite part was the two Rhinos humping." *facepalm*
So yeah...may PG13 is a relative term and needs to be considered a little more carefully before taking a group of 7-10 year olds. But overall the movie was cute and family oriented, adventurous and beautifully shot. The relationships between the kids and the adults in the film were so natural and real that I felt like I was watching my own family. So yes, I really loved this movie.

#58 & #59 Xmen Origins Wolverine and The Wolverine
I'm gonna lump these two together, cuz honestly, I can't keep them completely straight now. *facepalm* I was confused by some of the backstory in Xmen, Days of Future Past, so I naturally thought, maybe I should watch some of the backstories available. That'll help clear things up, right? Wrong. I'm more confused than ever. So many characters, so many character death's, Deadpool used to be hot?? What?!
Okay, it wasn't all bad. In fact most of it wasn't bad at all. It was interesting to see the really far back history of Logan and Victor, to watch them go through war after war...geez, I sure hope they took the decade off between wars to do something fun. To see the easter eggs for the other Xmen movies, particularly the bit about Silver Fox and Emma Frost being does that work?
The Wolverine at least had a more fluid storyline. There was a beginning, a middle and an end, although I was a little put off by Wolverine in Japan. I don't know why, but I was. I think it was the way the film was shot. It was just so very different visually than any other Xmen - or for that matter Marvel movie - I've seen. All-in-all, as an Xmen fan, I was better off having not seen these two movies. :(

#60 The Muppets Most Wanted
We missed this movie in its first go-round in the theaters, but one of the older theaters in Marshalltown brought it out special this summer, so I took my kiddo to go watch it. It stands up with all of the other Muppets movies. They're a good time, they remind me of my childhood, they make me laugh and JJ gets to be the next generation of kids who loves the Muppets. Win-win-win-win. What I enjoyed most was getting a chance to visit the theater of my childhood. The Orpheum was the place I saw ET. It was where everyone went on Christmas night for the late showing. "By 2000 the theater had become part of the Fridley Theater group but closed its doors in 2001. At that time a group of concerned citizens who desired to save the structure formed a nonprofit group to "save our screens" (SOS Campaign). It took ten years, a Vision Iowa grant, a Main Street grant, a passed bond issue, and thousands of individual, corporate and foundation dollars to once again open the Orpheum doors as the newly restored and re-designed $3.4 million-dollar Orpheum Theater Center, owned and operated by the Iowa Valley Community College District." ( The theatre is beautiful and it brought back many childhood memories that I got to share with my kid.

#61 Echo
I love the theatre in Grundy. $3 movies and even less during the Saturday matinee. We paid $4 and got myself, my brother, my kiddo & my nephew in. And because their food is so cheap, each boy got a kids combo and I got popcorn and pop for less than $12. You just can't beat that!! But the movie.... It is ET x Wall-E x Goonies x Stand by Me. You shouldn't haven't any problems translating that. Echo was just very enjoyable. Funny, exciting, touching, adventurous, I could go on and on. I loved how relatable it was to the boys who are 7 and 10. They could easily see themselves in the group of friends that the characters made up and really seemed to get how important the 'quest' was for those characters. Shawn & I connected to it just as well because we grew up on the Goonies and Stand by Me and ET.

#62 How to Train your Dragon 2
I really enjoyed the first movie. I enjoyed the second movie more! Took all four kids to this one. My niece, who sat beside me, warned that I might have to wake her up as she's notorious for falling asleep in movies. She very proudly didn't fall asleep in this one. Even more beautiful than the first movie, Hiccup is all grown up and set to become the next chief of Berk. Only, he's not sure that's what he wants and spends his days exploring the lands around his home and discovers that someone is capturing dragons. What happens after is a whirlwind of excitement, adventure and mystery with a climactic end that left me teary-eyed. Also...spoiler...someone dies.

#63 Phantom of the Opera 25th Anniversary
It's finally on Netflix! I was so excited, because the Phantom and Raoul are played by two of my favorite West End actors, Ramin Karimloo and Hadley Fraser. I love these two and I ship their Bromance like whoa! I would give just about anything to watch either of them live on stage, be it acting or singing (because they both have music careers also). So yes, I love them. I love them to tears in Les Mis, so I figured...why not watch them in Phantom. I've never seen Phantom, but it's on the top of everyone's musical list....Not mine. Compared to Les Mis, Phantom is a mess. Yes their performances were perfect, Yes I loved Sierra Boggess as Christine, but the flow and pace of the musical itself is just messy and I really wasn't all that impressed (as a whole) with the music. Of course, there are bright shining moments, but overall...not my favorite.

#64 Sunshine
Chris Evans plus Director Danny Boyle, who's known for Slumdog Millionaire, Trainspotting, 28 Days Later...people are basically lining up to work with the guy now and I can see why. This is beautifully shot and really smartly written. The story follows a crew of eight people into space as they take on the mission of saving our dying Sun and all of the Earth with it. And then...everything goes wrong. There is definitely a Vulcan 'the needs of the many' theme that runs through this movie, but what I found so interesting about this theme is, that as humans, we may have good intentions, but when it comes down to it, our instinct to survive always fights for precedence. These crew members face this life or death decision time and time again, sometimes winning out over the instinct, other times losing, and it really made me consider my own strength of will. Would I be able to complete the mission they're sent out on? Knowing that I won't be returning home? Knowing that I may not even make it to the end of the mission? That's a really hard question to answer.
Watch this movie. It's been hard for me to locate this film, but it suddenly popped up on HBOGo. It won't be on there for long, so be sure and add this to your watch list. It is so thrilling (and not in a good way) and beautiful and heartstopping.

100 Movies Challenge

#44 Scoop
A Woody Allen film, this is one of those films i could have gone without seeing. A British journalist dies and while on the boatman's boat to the afterlife, meets a woman who was murdered by a well-know and wealthy man (Hugh Jackman). Not one to let the scoop of his afterlife escape, he jumps ship literally and finds a way to communicate with a young american journalism student (Scarlett. Johansson) through a magician's (allen) magic box. She befriends the magician and they set off on a mission to discover the truth about the handsome would-be murderer, that is if she doesnt fall for him first.
Allen is his typical bumbling self and he brings out the worst in Scarlett's acting abilities. jackman is the only bright spot in film and thats stretching things.
Mark this down as dont bother.

#45 Neighbors
Two pics


Enough said.

#46 This is War

I have a real affinity for hot guys doing dumb shit to each other. Doesn't matter why: see Neighbors. This is Chris Pine and Tom Hardy, best friends, partners in the CIA, might as well be family, fighting over the same woman (Reese Witherspoon).
Its just a fun movie. You dont wanna overthink it. Just sit back and enjoy the men.

#47 Much Ado About Nothing

Finally got a chance to watch Joss Whedon's version of the Shakespeare romantic comedy classic. This one had its moments. Benedick diving across the screen to eavesdrop on his friends gossiping about love between him and Beatrice was a higlight, and i was pleasantly surprised to see Clark Gregg as Leonato. But i have to admit that the Kenneth Branaugh's version better. Theres something about the rhythm and the flow, the chenist4y between Branaugh and Emma Thompson, and Michael Keaton, although way over the top, was just funnier than Nathan Fillion at playing 'an ass'.
I also enjoyed Whedon's choice to produce the film in black and white. It gave it a certain texture that i dont think i would have noticed if it had been in color.
Definitely worth the watch.

#48 The Covenant
Lost Boys meets Harry Potter without the charm of either. I watched this only for Sebastian Stan, who got to play the bad guy. He's pretty damn good as a bad guy, but I wasn't very impressed with this movie. It could have had more potential if it had a redemption twist at the end, but it didn't. The special effects were interesting at times and cheesy at others. And the majority of the movie has a weird semi-POV in a female love interest character, who of course has immediate chemistry with the male lead. There was a bit of good tension towards the end, but I'm not very good with so called 'scary movies', so that could have just been me. Overall, it was a bunch of pretty faces in your standard high school style scary movie.

#49 Xmen Days of Future Past
I'm gonna get my dislikes off my chest right off the bat,because it feels blasphemous to even admit that I have dislikes for this film. There's only two. First, stories that jump around in time leave me dizzy. And second, I love trailers...except when they give all of the best parts away and leave nothing for the movie to reveal. That's what happened here. All my favorite parts are in the trailers.
Having said that, I really enjoyed this film. I love that they explored Charles and Eric's friendship (and breakup) more. I love how vulnerable said breakup has left Charles. I'm so used to seeing Professor Xavier as a flawless, can't break through his exterior, superior human being, that this extremely flawed view of him made me appreciate him all the more. Eric is as hard to decipher as ever. I can just never tell what his true motivations are.
I enjoyed the severe tension towards the end of the film and left the theatre trying to puzzle out all the ways that this portion of the marvel universe is now changed because of the events of the past. Especially where Logan is concerned. Can't wait for the next installment. Is there a next installment?

#50 The Iceman
Yep, I'm still on my 'let's watch everything the cast of Winter Soldier were in' kick. I'm not ashamed. This is a Chris Evans film. Or, I should say that he's in it. This is the true story about a hitman who is so good at his job, that when he's asked to sit of the sidelines to let things cool off, he sets out on his own, moonlighting with another hitman to pass the time. This is a very interesting film that shows all that this guy had to do to keep his real identity a secret, even from his own family.

#51 How to Train your Dragon
My brother had the remote on Sunday morning and says to me, I've never watched this one, have you? Nope. Boy, were we missing out. This film is fantanstic. Thrilling and funny and loaded with voices you'll recognize. Visually beautiful and a heartwarming story. And now i have to go watch the 2nd one.

#52 In Good Company
Dennis Quaid, Topher Grace, Scarlett Johansson & Marg Helgenberger(sp?)
Middle aged dad meets wet behind the ears up-n-comer (Grace) who's to be his new boss at a sputtering sports magazine. An unwanted (by Quaid) father/son relationship blossoms and is then threatened when Grace starts dating Quaid's daughter behind his back. This is cute and funny with just the right amount of warmth and family. The ending will surprise you just a bit.

#53 Cellular
Kim Basinger and Chris Evans
This is a high octane, no stopping til the end, knight in shining armor action flick. Basinger is kidnapped and thrown into an attic room with nothing but a broken roto-dial telephone. She pieces it together and makes a call to some random stranger. Thank God that random stranger was Captain America in training. Great flick. I was late to work that morning because I just HAD to finish it in one sitting.

100 Movies Challenge

We're just gonna call this my obsession with the cast of Captain America month. Cruz that's exactly what the list below demonstrates.

#25 Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Considering I fell asleep during the first Captain America when I first watched it, I was very surprised by just how much I did love this film. I'm kind of leaning towards this being my new favorite Marvel movie.

#26 Rachel Getting Married
This is one of the strangest Anne Hathaway movies I've ever seen. And yet I found it oddly enjoyable. Not like it was a 'fun ride' kind of enjoyable, but I liked it just the same. Anne's character is a drug addict who comes home for her sister's wedding. The entire family is beyond messed up in their own unique ways and none of them have a healthy relationship with any of their family members, but at the end of the day, they do obviously love each other. This movie falls into the Cap America films because Sebastian Stan is in the first three minutes. That's it. LOL and he's an obnoxious little prick.

#27 What's Your Number
One of my new favorite rom/coms. Chris Evans and Anna Faris team up to help Anna's character sort out all of her past boyfriends to determine if any of them might be worth a second look so she could avoid going over 20 sexual partners - hence the 'what's your number' title. Typical rom/com, but with lots of Chris Evans being totally adorable a half or mostly naked most of the time. A+

#28 The Nanny Diaries
Evans and Johansson - I really do love these two together, but in this film...he almost wasn't necessary. It wasn't the greatest movie, but I still liked it. Scarlett was pretty young yet and she's definitely improved over the years, but most of it was pretty cute, especially the interactions between her character and the little boy she was a nanny to. Also this:

#29 Push
Evans and Dakota Fanning - AU sci-fi in which a group of people have specific mental abilities such as seeing into the future and telekinesis. I enjoyed this movie. Loved the brother/sister chemistry between Chris & Dakota, even if it felt a little rushed or easy. That would be my complaint about the film. It all felt rushed or too easily obtained. Not that the characters didn't have lots of obstacles to get over or around, but that some of the answers came a little too easy and without the audience really understanding how we got there. I think if they could have added an additional 20 minutes, they could have slowed down the process and made the film that much more enjoyable. But I suppose that's how life works - fast.

#30 The Perfect Score
Evans/Johansson again! High school students preparing for college need to ace the SATs and go to great lengths to do so. This is a fun, Mission Impossible style movie.

#31 Don Jon
This is a Scarlett Johansson film and wow! I'm not sure what I was expecting, but it wasn't this movie. I'm not going to say it was a bad movie or that I didn't enjoy it, because neither of those statements are true. But I will say that it wasn't a roll that I expected to see her in. The gist of the movie is a womanizing port addict falls hard for a girl who uses her 'powers' (for good or evil) to persuade him to change his ways.
This is one of those movies that women could very well call foul on. It could seem demeaning because it is FULL of female nudity, but that's not the intention. The intention is to demonstrate how the main character (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) changes through out. I won't say I wasn't uncomfortable at parts, but overall, this was a very good, very honest movie.

#32 Xmen: First Class
I deviate from Cap for a day, to get caught up on Xmen before I go watch the new one. I am a HUGE fan of James McAvoy. First watched him years ago in Children of Dune, and he never fails to extertain. It'll be very fun to watch him play across from Sir Patrick Stewart in the upcoming Xmen. I loved seeing the beginnings of the Xmen and of the friendship between Erik and Charles. It really makes watching Xmen: The Last Stand much more of an emotional roller coaster.

#33 Jane Eyre (2011)
This isn't quite a Cap movie, but it is Marvel related because it stars Michael Fassbender from Xmen First Class. And I know I've already put Jane Eyre on here, but this is a different version. It's also not my favorite version. I had hoped it would be, but I just didn't have the same feelings watching Michael in this as I did watching William Hurt. Hurt just seemed to encapsulate the character
Of Rochester just a little bit better. I also didn't care for how the screenplay was written. They left out one of my favorite charactrrs, who was extremely important to Jane's story. That being said, I did still enjoy this very much.

#34 The Apparition
I tried really hard to watch this, cuz it's got a younger, mopping headed Sebastian Stan in it as well as Tom Felton, but dammit, I'm a big fucking pussy!!!! I got 33 minutes is and had to still pause it. I'm gonna try and finish it, but...NOT at night!
*hangs head in shame
2nd pass, I got to 49 mins. Honest guys, this is why I don't watch scary movies! My heart feels like it's going to jump out of my chest. *facepalm
Mother of God!!!!! How am I gonna sleep tonight? Sebastian Stan better fucking be worth the nightmares.

Cc. teriwithbraids nessaky

100 Movies Challenge

#20 Jane Eyre
I was given an abridged version of this book several years ago and loved the story from the start. Finally got a chance to watch a film version and it held up nicely to the book. William Hurt as Mr. Rochester was a good choice paired with Charlotte Gainsbourgh whom I've never seen before. Their chemistry is subtle at first but tangible and I rooted for them as much as I did in the book.

#21 Coriolanus
Ralph Fiennes & Gerald Butler Modern take on the Shakespeare play. It is brutal and intense and the final two scenes are heartbreaking. Fiennes is amazing as Caius Martius Coriolanus. He is very much the soldier; loyal to his cause and terrible. And Butler's Aufidius is his equal. But it is Vanessa Redgrave as Martius's mother, Volumnia who has the stand out performance. Her plea to Martius had me in tears til the end.
Now...I just have to wait for them to release the stage production to DVD featuring Tom Hiddleston and Hadley Fraser! Please! Oh Please!!
Updated: So...apparently NTL has no intention of releasing Coriolanus on DVD, the news of which incited a whole bunch of people to upload it online. I don't think it needs to be said, but I've now seen the stage version and I don't know that I can compare the two. I was very surprised by the stage set. Simplistic and yet they used every square inch and used it well.

Hiddleston was amazing. Fraser was amazing. The entire cast was amazing. And the end...Wow! The End. *whew

#22 In Time
Justin Timberlake and Amanda Seyfried were really great in this AU scifi action. The gist of the film is a world in which people stop aging at 25, but upon reaching that age are only given one year to live. Biologically engineered w/ a 13 digit counter clock on their arms, time is used as currency. You work for more time, you pay your way with time, you gamble with time and if you're lucky, you can attain decades, even centuries. If you're not lucky, you spend each day making the most out of what time you have until your clock runs out and you fall over dead. Justin is a kid from the 'ghetto' and Amanda a kid born into time (read as: born into money). When bizarre circumstances land them together they come together in what can only be termed a Bonnie & Clyde/Robin Hood crossover. The film was exciting and action packed all the way to the end. Definitely recommend.

#23 Pacific Rim
Finally got around to watching this. I wasn't initially interested it in because it looked for all intents and purposes like a Optimus Prime meets Godzilla movie. But then Jim Beaver came along and said it was the "best big-monster movie I've seen since the original KING KONG and GODZILLA. And I don't normally like monster movies." Okay, I'm in.
So yes, it is Transformers vs Godzilla, but...BUT...Charlie Hunnman as Raleigh Becket is really great. I've never seen Sons of Anarchy, so I didn't have a clue how much he could draw a viewer in. I know now. He's so down-to-earth and the way he approached the role made me immediately care about Raleigh. One of the most important goal in a monster movie is to bring the human element to the forefront and I feel like this film did a really good job with that. My only real complaint would be that they ended the film rather abruptly. I know there've been discussions of a second movie which would allow some degree of follow-up on the human plotlines, but I still felt a bit robbed by them not tying up all the emotional loose ends. Still, i definitely recommend.

Cc. teriwithbraids nessaky

100 Movies Challenge

Some really good films this round! And one I would recommend you avoid at all costs!

#13 Les Miserasbles
I wanted to watch this in the theater but never got the chance. I wish I had because I would have loved to have seen the detail blown up on the big screen.
I've never seen the live theater production and have never read the book (although I've purchased it now), so I have nothing to compare it to. All that being said, I really enjoyed this film and its music. All of the actors were wonderfully cast and no, I won't apologize for liking Anne Hathaway. Even Russell Crowe, whose singing voice wasn't up to the same standard as the rest of the cast, was a formidable antagonist to Hugh Jackman's Jean Valjean.
I was completely captivated by Aaron Tveit's Enjolras. He was charming and powerful and slightly terrifying, not to mention beautiful. All these young men were, and they all died (well, almost).
For me, though...I loved Grantaire and Gavroche. The little boy who played Gavroche was just amazing! And well, I'll admit, I'm biased towards George Blagden (Vikings) who played Grantaire. I just wish the part was a bit more fleshed out and they hadn't trimmed his song.
Overall...loved! Will watch again - soon!

P.s. I've since watched the 25th anniversary concert & am now in love with Ramin Karimloo & Hadley Fraser

#14 & #15 Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian & The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
I'd only ever watched the Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe before & although I enjoyed it very much, I'm glad I waited to watch the other two. The trilogy was played together over the weekend & I feel like these are the type of films that should definitely be marathoned. Having never read the book, it was nice to see how the story was tied up in the final film.

#16 One Day
Anne Hathaway & Jim Sturgiss are adorable together as two classmates who 'meet' on the last day of University & strike up a friendship that lasts 20 years. The film shows one day (July 15th) of each year of their friendship and how the ebs and flows of life affect the relationship. The film is moving and heartbreaking and wonderful, and the actors' chemistry is perfect.

#17 Hammer of the Gods
This is the one I will warn you about. I watched it for two reasons: 1. I'm hooked on History's Vikings
2. Clive Standen (from History's Vikings) is in it.
Not only does it not hold a candle, it can't even be considered a viking movie. It had no clear path, no characters worth rooting for & was just a mess overall. Plus Clive's character died fairly early on, so...meh. It was just an awful movie.

#18 Contagion
I didn't come into this movie at its start, but early enough to catch up. The gist is an unknown virus has been introduced and is spreading like wildfire, killing a fourth of the people infected. Chaos insues! The film bounced around a bit making it hard to follow, but I easily became attached to several of the characters, so I was glued until the end, at which point I turned to my family and said, 'forgive me if I don't touch any of you for a good long while.'

#19 The LEGO Movie
Took my kiddo & my nephew to watch it (finally). It was very entertaining & quick-witted. But unlike some of the kids movies now-a-days, it didn't feel the need to go there with the 'adult' humor which I appreciated. I don't like to have to explain or 'I'll explain it when you're older'. The movie made me want to run out and spend an entire paycheck on LEGOs (Congratulations) and its only downfall was the song that is permanently stuck in my kid's head.

Cc. teriwithbraids nessaky

100 Movies Challenge

I have been lax on my challenge, so here's a couple that I've managed to watch in the last couple weeks.

#11 Diehard #5 - A Good Day to Die Hard
I've always been a fan of the Die Hard movies and was extremely excited when the movie first came out to hear that it would co-star Jai Courtney as John (Jack) McClain Jr. Jai played Varro in Spartacus and was probably my favorite character in the first series. I loved his and Andy Whitfield's chemistry on the show, but that isn't this movie.
Better that the 4th installment, this movie doesn't stand up to the 3rd installment, Die Hard w/ a Vengeance (co-staring Samuel L Jackson). It was non-stop action (maybe even a bit too much and too over-the-top, but that doesn't matter to me because I enjoyed the banter between 'father & son' and am so happy to see Jai on the big screen - even without his white Varro curls. :(

#12 The History Boys
British comedy/drama, the film was adapted from a play of the same name that was performed at Royal National Theatre (London) and later on Broadway. The film features the same actors as the play, and I'm glad. The cast is wonderful: Richard Griffiths & Frances de la Tour (Harry Potter), Dominic Cooper (Mamma Mia) & Russell Tovey (Being Human - and the reason I chose to watch this movie) and so many others.
Eight boys prepare for Oxbridge entrance exams with the aid of their three, rather eccentric teachers. This film is full of heart and humor, and I laughed out loud so many times, that I was very much caught off-guard by the subtle drama. To tell you any more about the plot would really spoil the story, but I have to say the ending is more than bittersweet having just lost Richard Griffiths last year.
"The best moments in reading are when you come across something, a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things that you'd thought special, particular to you. And here it is, set down by someone else, a person you've never met. Maybe even someone long dead. And it's as if a hand has come out and taken yours." - Hector

Cc: teriwithbraids nessaky