Here we go again. Another lazily rehashed piece of American cinema, polished with a fresh coat of hi-res CGI. With a cast that tries to mimic the original, instead of actually updating the product for a modern audience; we have another reason to “Netflix and chill” instead of fighting traffic, exorbitant ticket prices, bland concessions, glowing phones, loud popcorn munchers and mouth breathers, just to see something that was better (in this case) 56 years ago. The story of The Magnificent Seven (1960) was conventional back then. The film, itself a remake of Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai (1954); arguably the most retold story in cinema, has inspired countless adaptations. From Suicide Squad (2016) to The Wild Bunch (1966), the idea of hiring/forcing a band of misfits to protect/defend a town/village from an evil businessman/gang is old business. With classic Westerns sliding further away from the mainstream conscientiousness, the Magnificent Seven remake seems doomed to be future background noise when it premiers on cable TV next year. The Magnificent Seven however, makes a simple but effective changes to the story; effectively making the film feel like an update, and not a carbon copy remake. Replicating the sights and sounds of a film is loads easier than recreating the emotional content felt by my parent’s generation, yet director Antoine Fuqua manages the improbable. Continue reading “Movie Review: The Magnificent 7”
Being very loosely based on the 1980’s CBS show of the same name; The Equalizer stars Denzel Washington as Bob McCall. His days as an agent in one of the alphabet soup of federal agencies, Bob, a widow, lives alone in his cozy Boston apartment. He spends his days working at Home Mart, a Lowes/Home Depot knockoff and his many sleepless nights at a local diner. At the diner he befriends Elena (Chloe Grace-Moretz), a teenage Russian prostitute who stops in to grab a bite to eat in between jobs. When Elena is hospitalized by her pimp, Bob does the honorable thing and tries to buy Elena’s freedom. Just under $10,000 should cover costs, but as you may have guessed by the picture above; negotiations break down quickly and five dead Russians in a pool of blood is all that remains.
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Drug and alcohol addiction is a serious issue. What makes it all the more serious is that the individual who is facing it is usually in denial that they are in fact an addict. To them it’s just something that they use and it just gets them through the day. They lie. They lie to themselves and to others about their addiction. In Flight, Denzel Washington plays a man who is in denial about his substance abuse and thinks nothing about climbing into a cockpit and flying a plane filled with unknowing passengers for which their safety is his concern.
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The spy game is a tried and true genre for Hollywood. It seems like every month or so there is a new movie out about spies doing things and backstabbing and saving the western world or something. It’s also the cold part of the year where we see a genre movie starring Denzel Washington. The name of this one is â€‹Safe Houseâ€‹ and this time he’s joined by Ryan Reynolds in this story with snapping necks, car chases, and high powered gunfire all to get this one man who holds some important secrets.
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