High Strung

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3/5 Stars

Summary: “When a hip hop violinist busking in the New York subway encounters a classical dancer on scholarship at the Manhattan Conservatory of the Arts, sparks fly. With the help of a hip hop dance crew they must find a common ground while preparing for a competition that could change their lives forever.”

So I chose this movie on Netflix  because it had 5 stars so it has to be great, right?  Nope.

If I’d realized the movie was rated PG before watching it, I probably would have moved onto something else, because it was just your typical PG movie about a girl who can dance. The story is extremely predictable and the acting of some of the background characters is horrible.

On the plus side, the dancing is nice to watch.  I’m always amazed watching ballet (if you want to watch an awesome show about ballet, check out Flesh and Bone).

The movie isn’t terrible, I still enjoyed it to an extent, but it’s probably better left to maybe a more preteen/teen audience.

Available on Netflix.

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Loving

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3/5 Stars

Summary: “The story of Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple, whose challenge of their anti-miscegenation arrest for their marriage in Virginia led to a legal battle that would end at the US Supreme Court.”

I really wanted to love this movie (no pun intended), but to be honest it was a bit of a let down.  I only learned about the couple recently and thought that a story like theirs would have made a great, interesting movie.  But I’m not really sure what aspect of their lives the movie was trying to focus on.

It would have been great if it was trying to be a romance story.  To show how the two met and to get us invested in their relationship instead of just dropping us in it just before they get married.  I never really felt that their relationship was that strong, which I’m sure in real life it was.

Focusing more on the case and the legality of their whole situation would have also made the movie better.  The couple had to deal with the police in the beginning, but for the most part the movie didn’t show them struggling with the racism and segregation.  And then when the Lovings are finally doing something about the laws keeping them apart, we don’t get to see what happens!  There’s very little in the court rooms, nothing about other interracial couples looking to them and hoping that they win, and they didn’t really seem to be fighting against that much.

Because I know so much more must have gone on in real life, I just wish it had been shown in the movie because it is a big deal.

I’d kind of say this is a take it or leave it movie.  Maybe if you’re in an interracial relationship, it might mean a little more to you than me, but it’s still kind of middle of the road.

 

I Was Here – Gayle Forman

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4/5 Stars

Summary: “When her best friend Meg drinks a bottle of industrial-strength cleaner alone in a motel room, Cody is understandably shocked and devastated. She and Meg shared everything—so how was there no warning? But when Cody travels to Meg’s college town to pack up the belongings left behind, she discovers that there’s a lot that Meg never told her. About her old roommates, the sort of people Cody never would have met in her dead-end small town in Washington. About Ben McAllister, the boy with a guitar and a sneer, who broke Meg’s heart. And about an encrypted computer file that Cody can’t open—until she does, and suddenly everything Cody thought she knew about her best friend’s death gets thrown into question.”

If you’re looking for a book that is going to make you feel good and happy, probably better off skipping this.  I Was Here is sad and at times a little depressing, but it is a story that needs to be told and made me want to keep reading any chance that I had.

The characters feel like they could be real people going through these very real situations.  There are a few things that I was like, seriously?  Would someone actually do that?  But not so much to take me out of the story.  It’s got drama, a murder mystery (sort of), and a little bit of romance thrown in.  What more could you ask for?

Since the book heavily deals with suicide, obviously don’t read the book if you like to stay away from that kind of thing.  But if you can, give this book a read because it is one of those stories that wraps itself around you until you finish it.

The Lobster

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4/5 Stars

Summary: “David has just been dumped by his wife. To make matters worse, David lives in a society where single people have 45 days to find true love, or else they are turned into the animal of their choice and released into the woods. David is kept at the mysterious HOTEL while he searches for a new partner, and after several romantic misadventures decides to make a daring escape to abandon this world. He ultimately joins up with a rebel faction known as The Loners, a group founded on a complete rejection of romance. But once there David meets an enigmatic stranger who stirs up unexpected and strong feelings within him.”

Time for me to binge watch all the movies nominated for Oscars this year…well not all of them, but the ones that look interesting.

Before looking through the different noms, I’d never even heard of The Lobster.  I feel like a lot of the time those are the best ones because they haven’t been hyped up, but are still going to be that kind of movie that’s a little weird yet good.  Does that make sense?

Because this movie is weird.

I mean, come on, people get turned into animals if they don’t find the person they want to marry after staying in a hotel for a few weeks.  I’d love to know who came up with this idea and why!

The Lobster has a dry sense of comedy that is a little bit dark at times.  It embodies the feel of an independent movie, meaning do not watch this if you only like traditional storytelling.  It’s interesting because it’s almost like two movies put together.  The first half focuses on David at this hotel and the other main character isn’t introduced until the second half.

I started watching Black Mirror recently, and I’d say if you’re into that, you’ll definitely enjoy this movie.  Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Being Charlie

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3/5 Stars

Summary: “Charlie is a troublesome 18-year-old who breaks out of a youth drug treatment clinic, but when he returns home to Los Angeles, he’s given an intervention by his parents and forced to go to an adult rehab. There, he meets a beautiful but troubled girl, Eva, and is forced to battle with drugs, elusive love and divided parents.”

Being Charlie is kind of like your typical blah movie that isn’t bad, but still isn’t making it onto any best movie lists.  It’s about a kid with a drug problem and rich parents who don’t really want to deal with what their son is going through so they send him away.  You can pretty much guess what happens in the movie without even watching it.

It has a few funny and deep moments throughout, but not enough to carry the basic story.  I enjoyed it as a movie that kind of just passes the time.

If you’ve got nothing to do and are looking for a show to have on in the background, this one might be a good choice, other than that, don’t sit down expecting to watch your next favorite movie.

Available on Netflix.

Why Him?

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4/5 Stars

Summary: “During the holidays, loving but overprotective Ned travels to California to visit his daughter Stephanie at Stanford University. While there, he meets his biggest nightmare: her well-meaning but socially awkward boyfriend Laird. Even though Laird is a billionaire, Ned disapproves of his freewheeling attitude and unfiltered language. His panic level escalates even further when he learns that Laird plans to ask for Stephanie’s hand in marriage.”

If you’re in the mood for a good laugh, go and see this movie.  It’s light and funny with a great cast.  Seriously, James Franco and Bryan Cranston are on point.  And Keegan-Michael Key played Gustav beautifully 😂.

Is it the most original movie?  No.  But even movies that are just there to make you laugh are just as good as ones that you would watch over and over again.

I’m honestly surprised I haven’t heard more about this movie because it was a packed theatre and it had everyone laughing out loud.

Passengers

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3.5/5 Stars

Summary: “On a routine journey through space to a new home, two passengers, sleeping in suspended animation, are awakened 90 years too early when their ship malfunctions. As Jim and Aurora face living the rest of their lives on board, with every luxury they could ever ask for, they begin to fall for each other, unable to deny their intense attraction… until they discover the ship is in grave danger. With the lives of 5000 sleeping passengers at stake, only Jim and Aurora can save them all.”

No doubtably, you have seen the trailer for this movie more than a few times.  It was shown before every movie I saw in theatres for months and months, which usually means the movie isn’t going to be that good, so I was a little worried.  While it wasn’t the best movie I’ve seen all year, it was good and worth watching.

I have to admit though, the movie is geared a little more to romance than the trailer suggests.  It tried to be both an action and romance movie at the same time and to me fell short.  A little bit more of one or the other would have made a big difference in the story.

Ignore all the hype they tried to put around this movie and go watch it for the acting and the nice story.