Winter-Spring 2016 Mini Movie Reviews

SPOTLIGHT
11/25/15

Key Players: Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Mark Ruffalo

SpotlightEven though I’ve only spent a couple of short months in a real hustle-and-bustle newsroom and never at a major paper, I still get really amped when I watch movies about that kind of setting. It takes me back to when I worked for my college paper—the Spotlight team’s tiny room sectioned off from the rest of the staff made me nostalgic for our tiny computer lab in the basement of the student union, heavy with the scent of newsprint and stale coffee.

Spotlight truly deserved its Best Picture win—what a powerful film. As a journalist, I easily related to their passion for the story, their sense of duty to discover the truth and unveil it to the world. As a former Catholic school kid, the statistics were staggering. Based on true facts, Spotlight tells the story of how The Boston Globe exposed the wide-spread scandal of pedophilic priests and the massive cover-up within the Catholic Church. It hit the front page of the Sunday paper in early 2002 and sent shockwaves around the country—and, as the end credits show, the world.

Should you see it?
If you enjoy journalism movies or are interested in the subject matter. I highly recommend it.

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16 Movies I Want To See In 2016

A new year means a new batch of film experiences for movie fanatics like myself. Who will be the new Oscar players? The new summer blockbusters? The new book adaptations? What screwball comedies are going to make us laugh? What dramas will make us cry? What actor will have their moment, the one that makes you acknowledge that you’ll be paying much closer attention to their work from now on? I love movies, obviously, and I especially love that there are always so many to choose from. This list is bound to grow as buzz from film festivals and award season starts to spread. (Plus, there’s always the half an hour of trailers that play each time you visit a theater.) Pass the popcorn, another year of going to the movies has begun!

1. THE 5th WAVE | 1/22/16

The trailer caught my interest, since I’m into YA sci-fi fiction being turned into movies lately. I also like disaster flicks. It’s been a while since we’ve seen what Chloe Grace Moretz can do in a starring role, so I’ll give it a shot.

2. DEADPOOL | 2/12/16

DeadpoolI love Ryan Reynolds—particularly sarcastic badass Ryan Reynolds. I know nothing about the Marvel character, just that I have a few friends who are insanely excited for this and the trailer cracked me up. I’ve warmed up to Marvel movies in recent years and this one looks far more promising than, let’s say, Ant-Man did.

3. ZOOTOPIA | 3/4/16

It’s a Disney animated movie about animals. If you know me at all, you know why I want to go. Just watch the trailer. So many sloths!

4. The Divergent Series: ALLEGIANT | 3/18/16

AllegiantDivergent is right behind The Hunger Games on my list of favorite YA dystopia literature-turned-film. Shailene Woodley is doing a great job of bringing believability to Tris’ heroism and the all-star cast just keeps getting bigger and better. The first book was phenomenal and the first movie followed it perfectly. But the books lost their way after that and the screenwriters did a great job of keeping the plot on track for the big screen. Insurgent made much more sense on film than on the page, so I’m confident they’ll do the same for the final installments.

5. MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING 2 | 3/25/16

GreekI love the original so much, I practically have it memorized. So now that it’s their daughter’s turn to get married, it seems only natural to check in on Ian and Toula and see how they (and the whole big fat Greek family) handle the situation. I can’t wait. This is one sequel I won’t mind at all.

6. THE HUNTSMAN: WINTER’S WAR | 4/22/16

This prequel is going to take what worked in the first film (bold cinematography, Charlize Theron’s face, Chris Hemsworth’s everything), remove what didn’t (Kristen Stewart and her new favorite director), and add some beautiful, talented women (Emily Blunt and Jessica Chastain). Mix that all together and see what happens? We’re already off to a promising start. Continue reading

Book VS. Film: Divergent

Screen shot 2014-03-31 at 2.08.13 PMIt’s official; I have been sucked into the world of Divergent. I always do this. I ignore something as the buzz builds and builds, and when it finally reaches a deafening roar, I break down. I did it with Harry Potter, believe it or not. When my mom first brought the Sorcerer’s Stone home for me, I thought it looked silly. Flash forward 14 years and I’m sitting in a movie theater sobbing my heart out as a gigantic chunk of my childhood finally comes to an end. The Hunger Games: Not quite as dramatic, but still the same result. I resisted until maybe a month or so before the movie, then finally read the book, nay, the entire trilogy, in one weekend. And now I love it. So when everyone started talking about Divergent, I knew I would eventually have to grab the book, since I’m the type of person who simply has to read the book before seeing the movie.

I read it in 8 hours. I sat down the Saturday evening of the film’s opening weekend (March 22) and didn’t move until 3 a.m. Sunday afternoon, I was sitting in the theater. I saw it again this past weekend and subsequently read the entire second book, Insurgent. My plans for this coming weekend? Allegiant. Continue reading