Currently browsing the "Christopher Walken" tag.

Review: Wild Mountain Thyme

Adapted from a play that director John Patrick Shanley (Moonstruck, Doubt) wrote about his own Irish family, Wild Mountain Thyme is a sweet and funny tale of a couple destined to be together who keep missing their chance. Irish actor Jamie Dornan (Fifty Shades of Grey, A Private War) plays Anthony, an introverted farmer whose Father Tony (Christopher Walken, Hairspray, Deerhunter) isn’t sure he should leave the farm to him. And one of the reasons is that he doesn’t have a wife. Rosemary (Emily Blunt, A Quiet Place, Mary Poppins Returns) lives is on the neighboring farm and has been in love with him since they were children. But can she convince him that he wants her, too?

Review: The War with Grandpa

If you’re willing to risk your family’s health to see The War with Grandpa hoping for some side-splitting comic relief amidst the pandemic, then sadly, the joke would be on you. At best, The War with Grandpa might serve as a tolerable 90-minute diversion for parents and kids really desperate for a PG-friendly Family Movie Night at the Drive-In. But there’s no way anyone should venture into a theater for this one! The War with Grandpa is a multi-generational dud, a lame paint-by-numbers dysfunctional family comedy based on an award-winning book (by Robert Kimmel Smith) that I can only assume plays better on the written page.

Eddie the Eagle

Eddie the Eagle is a feel-good movie for the masses, inspired by a true story, though dramatically boosted by fictionalized supporting characters and plot points. It’s the story of Eddie Edwards, a British ski jumper who charmed the world at the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary with his goofy antics, big glasses, and determination to compete despite a definite lack of world-class athletic prowess. British actor Taron Egerton (Kingsman: The Secret Service) downplays his looks and ramps up the nerd factor to play Eddie, an underdog athlete you can’t help but root for. I read that both Steve Coogan (Philomena) and Rupert Grint (Harry Potter) were once slated to play Eddie and I could totally see either of them pulling it off as well. Ultimately, it’s what Eddie represents that makes the movie work… well, that and Hugh Jackman. ☺

Jersey Boys

If you like the music of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, then treat yourself to Jersey Boys, the award-winning broadway musical-turned-movie directed by Clint Eastwood. The movie isn’t as good as the stage version, but it’s certainly cheaper and the music is the same, as are a few of the lead actors. Unfortunately, stage acting doesn’t always translate onto the big screen, and while these guys are all solid singers, the acting comes off a bit forced and inconsistent. Fortunately, the familiar musical numbers help keep the audience engaged, even when the story starts to falter. From ‘Sherry,’ ‘Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You’ and ‘Big Girls Don’t Cry’ to ‘Rag Doll,’ ‘Oh What a Night,’ ‘My Eyes Adore You,’ etc. That’s a lotta hits.

Stand Up Guys

Great actors does not a great movie make. Pardon my grammar, but that’s my final answer on Stand Up Guys, a dark comedy starring Al Pacino, Christopher Walken and, to a (much) lesser extent, Alan Arkin. Needs more Arkin! Take these fine actors out of the mix, and you’ve got a pretty boring movie with way too many boner jokes. Maybe that’s why it’s called Stand Up Guys?! I’d rather not know. Anyway, the film looks and feels like a throwback to the gangster movies of the 1970s, only now our wiseguys are firmly in the twilight of their lives and careers. The film is part homage, part satire, and part melancholy. It opens with Walken’s character, Doc, picking up his best friend Val (Pacino) from prison, where’s he’s served 28 years. The reunion is bittersweet, however, because Doc has orders from the mob boss to kill Val – and both men know it. They decide to make those final hours count, and that means plenty of drinking, eating, pill-popping (mostly Viagra and blood pressure meds), brothel visits, and even a bit of gangstering with their old pal and wheelman Hirsch (Arkin).