20th Century Women (2016)

I wish this was a film made before film was even invented. This movie was as fast moving as a stalled-out car. None of the characters had moved forward in their lives and the relationships were really awkward and dumb. I hated the Gerwig & Crudup relationship and don’t even get me started on the main boy’s relationship with Elle Fanning. Talk about being a giant cuckold. The movie isn’t incredibly long, but it felt like it took centuries to go through. I wouldn’t recommend this at all unless you seek frustration.

0/100

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20th Century Women (2016)

Maleficent (2014)

Just like her name Maleficent is complicated. This riff on Disney’s Sleeping Beauty was an interesting one.
Angelina Jolie plays the scary Maleficent that we all know from our childhood, with her spine-tingling magic and green flames she produces… but with this film, she has a softer side. In this film Maleficent is at times the hero of the story and also the villain. I was really impressed to see this attempt of making a Disney film complicated. I also really think Elle Fanning might be one of the cutest girls in Hollywood. She was an excellent choice to play young Princess Aurora. The visual effects in this were awesome, and it has restored my faith in live-action Disney films. There were a couple of parts that you know they threw in for young kid humor (the three fairies) but otherwise this is a fun watch for adults. I was also happy to see the beautiful Juno Temple being in a more family friendly film for once! This is a pretty cool film, it’s worth seeing for sure.

80/100

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Maleficent (2014)

My Neighbor Totoro (1988)

All aboard the cat bus! This anime by Hayao Miyazaki was incredibly cute and touching. The two main girls (voiced by Elle and Dakota Fanning) were just adorable. This isn’t your typical animated film where there is a clear cut good vs. evil sort of scenario. It’s just a cute fantasy story of two girls and their dad who move to the country and meet Totoro, a giant Owl-Rabbit creature. The one point of drama in the film is the girls mother is ill in the hospital, but other than that, there are no scary thematic elements throughout the film. Everything is just so lighthearted and cute, you just have to love it! Also, they ride in bus that’s actually a cat. It’s strange, I know, but also pretty awesome!

89/100

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My Neighbor Totoro (1988)

We Bought a Zoo (2011)

They bought a Zoo, I didn’t buy this movie, but I’m glad that I watched it. Cameron Crowe brings another heartfelt movie into the mix with We Bought a Zoo. Matt Damon is the single father/widower that you just have to root for. The others in the cast also have great chemistry and you just fall in love with them. The story is a little predictable but that isn’t totally bad. There are quite a few laughs and a lot of cute and beautiful moments. Also, zoo creatures that are really cool. Lions and Tigers and Bears… oh, my!

80/100

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We Bought a Zoo (2011)

Twixt

I can’t believe that this is from Francis Ford Coppola. This is just an embarrassment. A lot of it is terribly campy and the effects are just bad. Even the acting is pretty crummy. Fanning does an ok job, but what happened to Val Kilmer? He looks like he put on 100 pounds since Batman. The story of the film is very surreal and has a few ideas sprinkled in, but then it just gets so vague that you stop caring and just pray that the movie ends. I’d stay away from this one.

40/100

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Twixt (2011)

Super 8

J.J. Abram’s movie was just ok. I’m not sure if it was too hyped up (I don’t feel like it was) or what but it just ended up being an ok movie. I thought that the characters were all really fun. I thought that Elle Fanning did a great job and I think she is a much better actress than her sister. The movie felt like a less better version of Cloverfield that had kids in it instead of adults. Granted, I usually hate kid actors these kids did a very fine job. I was very impressed by them.

74/100

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Super 8 (2011)