Movies

Imagine That

by Rick GrantGrade: B / Rated PG Again, Eddie Murphy has signed up for another family comedy. This time, Murphy plays a high powered financial analyst, Evan Danielson, working for a big firm. He’s divorced and a workaholic. Consequently, he neglects his 7-year-old daughter, Olivia (Yara Shahidi) and she has retreated into her imaginary world. When Evan discovers that his daughter’s imaginary friends have sage financial advice, his sagging status with his firm rises exponentially. Evan plays along with his daughter which gives Murphy a chance to do his comedy shtick, acting the fool. In this role, Murphy shows us …

Read More »

The Taking of Pelham 123

DASOTA cast "A Little Night Music" by Rick Grant Grade: A- / Rated R / 106 min Acclaimed director, Tony Scott loves over the edge action sequences, car wrecks, and shooting in New York City. In this scenario adapted by John Godey from Todd Black’s novel, Scott deftly used his directorial talents to the fullest, creating an action movie with a tight script. The film is a remake from a 1974 film but upgraded exponentially. With Denzel Washington playing the lead role of Walter Garber, the train dispatcher acting as the ad hoc hostage negotiator, and John Travolta playing the …

Read More »

The Proposal

by Rick GrantGrade: B / Rated PG-13 / 96 min The premise of this movie is as predictable however the clever script by Peter Chiarelli, and its execution by a stellar cast, make the movie quite enjoyable and funny. Veteran actress, Betty White steals her scenes as the nutty 89 year-old Grace Paxton. Sandra Bullock co-stars as bitchy editor, Margaret Tate and Ryan Reynolds portrays her personal assistant Andrew Paxton at a big time publishing house. They couldn’t have less in common. In fact, Andrew loathes her and calls her names in Tweets to other employees behind her back. When …

Read More »

My Life in Ruins

by Rick GrantGrade: C- / PG-13 / 96 min Nia Vardalos is back from obscurity after her 2002 hit My Big Fat Greek Wedding made $350 million, making her a wealthy woman. Then, she tried to spin off that success with a TV show which bombed. Now, Vardalos, who lost so much weight she looks like a different person from her old chubby image, is making another bid for big screen success in this fluff piece, My Life in Ruins. Here’s the pitch: 40 something ancient history teacher, Georgia (Vardalos) loses her job and kefi, (loosely translated her mojo or …

Read More »

The Hangover

by Rick GrantGrade: B / Rated R / 100 min It’s off to Vegas and wild times for this quartet of groomsmen who are giving their buddy, Doug (Justin Bartha) a bachelor party he’ll never forget. Ah, but the point is one of the guys buys the wrong drug, rofanol (the date-rape drug) and they wake up after the first night and can’t remember a thing. Their $4,000 a night suite is trashed and there is a live tiger in the bedroom. Worse still, the groom, Doug is missing. Thus, the clever premise involves the four disheveled bachelor partiers trying …

Read More »

JUNE MOVIES

NOW SHOWING UP Ever want to just get away? Carl Fredricksen does. The retired balloon salesman spent his entire life dreaming of exploring the globe and experiencing life to its fullest. But at age 78, life seems to have passed him by, until he ties thousands of balloons to his house and sets off on an adventure to South America. But he discovers, too late, that his nightmares have come true when he finds a persistent 8 year old stowaway, a Junior Wilderness Explorer named Russell. Featuring voices of: Edward Asner, Jordan Nagai, Christopher Plummer and John Ratzenberger. Rated PG …

Read More »

Up

by Rick Grant Grade: A / Rated PG / 96 min Pixar has created an animated film that is not only funny but has an important but subtle life lesson for kids. The story portrays an old man, 78 year old Carl Fredricksen (Ed Asner), who remembers his eventful life through flashback. The scenario gently teaches youngsters that Fredicksen didn’t just land on earth as an old man, he had a long productive life with a wife he adored. And now, since his wife died, he’s alone with his memories and regrets. The way co-director/screenwriter Bob Peterson told Fredicksen’s story …

Read More »

Terminator Salvation

Chef Matthew Medure at the grill lights, action, makeup Craig Smith welcomes crowd by Rick Grant Grade: A / Rated R / 115 min In this 4th installment of the Terminator franchise, Skynet finally got the upper hand in 2018 by striking first with nuclear weapons, destroying most of the earth’s population. A small band of resistance fighters remain, led my the mythical John Conner (Christian Bale). Conner’s ascension to the leader of the resistance was foretold back when terminators were sent back in time to kill him. His mother is long dead but she left a tape recording of …

Read More »

Dance Flick

by Rick GrantGrade: C+ / PG-13 / 83 min Two Generations of the Wayan clan participate in this parody of every dance movie ever released, except Dirty Dancing. The DD scene was cut because it was too dirty. Damon Wayan Jr. portrays the lead character, Thomas Uncles (His battle dance group is dubbed the Uncle Toms) who falls for a lily white girl, Megan (Shoshana Bush). Cue the mixed racial couple cliches. Yes, the Wayans have a field day sending up these formulaic movies. The Wayans have satirized other genres such as Scary Movie (ad nauseam) and the awful White …

Read More »

The Reluctant Traveler:

by ANNA RABHAN Marco Orsini is a little taller than average but otherwise unremarkable in appearance. He has no odd mannerisms and speaks with no easily identifiable accent – all of which makes what comes out of his mouth that much more surprising. Cut to the flat, treeless desert of Ethiopia. A convoy of white, rugged SUVs crawls through an inland depression that recent rains have turned into a sea. The water rises, the vehicles get stuck, the danger of angering the local tribe is ever present. One lone, reluctant traveler in the back seat pipes up, “Ooh, look! There’s …

Read More »