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Month: March 2013

March 25, 2013

The Simplistic Reviews March Madness Bracket of Good and Evil Round One Results: FILM BAD

DOLORES UMBRIDGE (16)
HANNIBAL LECTER (1) WINNER

What do you get when you have a psychopathic, cannibalistic, former-psychologist and a megalomaniacal headmistress in cahoots with an all powerful dark sorcerer?  One hell of an opening match-up.  While Dolores Umbridge was able to sneak in a few snide remarks, Hannibal “The Cannibal” asked for some “Quid pro quo” and followed it up by filleting her and eating her liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti.  Bottom line; wearing purple and pink never got anyone, anywhere.  Winner: Lecter.

MAX CADY (15)
THE JOKER (2) WINNER

Max Cady is a guy that takes things way too serious.  I mean, sure, you spent a few years in jail, you don’t have to bite a woman’s cheek off during rough sex.  The Joker asks “Why so serious?”  Cady reads a bible verse, but before he can say “Amen” the Clown Prince of Crime shows him how he got his scars, and Cady is up the river without a paddle.  Victory: The Joker.

FRANK BOOTH (14)
KHAN NOONIEN SINGH (3) WINNER

Frank Booth is psychotic.  Khan is moody.  You would think that Booth would have a chance against a guy that’s simply moody.  The only problem is that Khan will stop at nothing for revenge.  While Booth is distracted by Khan’s “velvet” like hair, he turns on Genesis, and easily wins this fight.  Khan tried to be a good neighbor, but instead sent Booth straight to hell with a love letter straight from his heart.

BIFF TANNEN (13)
DARTH VADER (4) WINNER

“You failed me for the last time, Tannen”
“Listen……*cough*…..butthead.”
“I told you two coats of wax on my TIE fighter, not one.”
To say the least, The Force was not with Biff.  Vader wins.  Impressive

HANS GRUBER (5)
JOHN DOE (12) WINNER

Two men, two different plans.  What John Doe lacks in fashion sense, me makes up with patience and of course a strap-on with a knife attached.  Hans might have a collection of Valentino suits and an accent that might get him on TV, but even that doesn’t stop Doe from claiming a major upset in this battle of Bad vs. Evil.  Becoming Envious:  John Doe wins.

COMMODUS (6) WINNER
PATRICK BATEMAN (11) 

One guy will bathe in a child’s blood.  The other, well, he’ll probably bathe in it after he drinks a pint or two while listening to Huey Lewis & The News.  Pat Bateman might be able to get a 9:00 pm res at Crayons, but Commodus will simply give a thumbs down and you’ll have a spear through your back.  While Bateman put up a fight, he was simply too square to be hip.  Commodus takes this fight easily, and is late for his 9:00 pm orgy.

ANNIE WILKES (7) WINNER
FREDDY KRUEGER (10)

Hell hath no fury like a woman who’s favorite book character is killed off.  Freddy is more of a TV guy himself, and while he tries to “Welcome Annie Wilkes to Prime Time, bitch” she simply isn’t having it.  With a few sledgehammer swings, Wilkes walks away with the win, while Kreuger is left trying to fit his head back into his fedora.

AGENT SMITH (9)
ALEX FORREST (8) WINNER

There might be a lot of Agent Smiths’, but like Annie Wilkes, hell hath no fury like a woman……..with 80s hair, and an affinity for rabbit stew.  Alex Forrest has no problem not being ignored by our favorite Matrix Agent, as she fakes a drowning, only to stab him in his digitized back.

March 25, 2013

Olympus Has Fallen

IMPLAUSIBLE

Really?  Really??  You got to be kidding me…I’m…sorry, I should be professional here.  However, I’m literally slack-jawed after watching Olympus Has Fallen.  Dumbstruck.  Flabbergasted.  At a loss.  Flummoxed.  Perplexed.  Confused.  Baffled.  My shoulder and neck hurt after having tilted my head to the side at the countless IMPLAUSIBLE and ridiculous moments in this film.  And I expected it!  I…I just can’t.  Okay, let me gather myself.  (Whew!)  Olympus Has Fallen is the Antoine Fuqua directed….WAIT…Fuqua directed this!?  The man behind one of my favorite films Training Day directed this mockery?!?  Tyler Perry makes a film a month and Fuqua gets stuck with crap stains like this?  Sorry, sorry.  Olympus Has Fallen is the…(gulp)…Antoine Fuqua directed film about a Korean attack on American soil.  Sound familiar?  Well it should.  Because you just got through NOT seeing the same concept in the abysmal Red Dawn remake.  Oh..oh this time it is the White House, not rural America.  That’ll make it better.  NO!  No.  It doesn’t.

How does the White House….THE MOST secured building IN THE WORLD get taken over you ask?

(SPOILER ALERT)

An airplane with more countermeasures than a Transformer and the most organized attacking force I’ve ever seen in my entire life.  Seriously.  The Red Skull and Loki both wielding the cosmic cube couldn’t organize an attack this precise and infallible.  Patton himself running Skynet robots couldn’t pull off an attack this perfect.  At one point I thought the entire population of downtown DC was just armed North Korean terrorists.  They come out of nowhere and just happened to ALL get mere feet away from, again…THE MOST SECURED BUILDING IN THE WORLD.  The supposed secret service decide the best way to stop a bunch of terrorist firing at them with a .50 cal is to just walk directly into the gunfire, bullets be damned.  If it was revealed later that this film was produced by the government in order to get the North Koreans to attempt something this stupid and IMPLAUSIBLE in order to legitimize us kicking their asses then nuking them, I’d buy it.

(END OF SPOILERS)

Look, I try my best not to spoil movies here on the site.  However, I find it to be irresponsible of me as a human being not to prepare you for whats in store if you do plan on seeing this film.  And for those saying that this is like Die Hard in the White House…Like DIE HARD in any shape, form, or F*%KING capacity…shame on you.  Shame…on…you.  You need to slap yourself in the face three times, genuflect to the awesomeness that is John McClane, put in Die Hard, then write a ten page apology letter to Bruce Willis and John McTiernan (In prison) for ever uttering Die Hard in the same paragraph as Olympus Has Fallen.

The acting in this is over the top.  It is cliched and wooden.  It is paint by numbers.  How can a film this stereotypically bad garner talent like Aaron Eckhart, Morgan Freeman, Angela Bassett, and…well Gerard Butler does anything nowadays.  When Sly and his Expendables do films like these, we eat it up because they are being ironic and nostalgically nodding to their earlier classics.  There are no expectations of weight to the performances.  But when you start sprinkling in Academy Award nominees in a film like this, it feels like you just caught them slumming it with some alleyway street walker on the LA strip at three in the morning.  They are all better than this.  Even you Butler.

Olympus Has Fallen is a big budget film that still has a direct to DVD feel.  All the stars and horribly CGIed fireworks they throw at it still can’t polish this turd of a film.  If you watch it…brace yourself…then try to tell me I’m wrong.

(Sigh) Well, at least this will probably be the last film using this stupid White House under siege plot for a while.  (SUDDENLY HANDED A PIECE OF PAPER) I’ve just been informed that a film in June starring Jaime Foxx and Channing Tatum will be about the White House under siege.  And it will be directed by Roland Emmerich.

I’m moving to Canada.

March 23, 2013

The Simplistic Reviews March Madness Bracket of Good and Evil Round One Results: TV GOOD

ARYA STARK (16)
JACK BAUER (1) WINNER

If this matchup was based on potential badassery, Arya (SPOILER ALERT FOR THINGS TO COME) would win hands down.  However, Arya is just scratching the surface of being a badass. She’s a survivor akin to Matilda in Leon: The Professional (Even here I had to refer to it).  Jack Bauer, on the other hand, has been a badass survivor for years.  Since the closest our country thought we’d get to a black president was the Allstate guy.  And if you think Bauer doesn’t have what it takes to put young, sweet Arya down, I recall a time where Jack shot a suspect’s wife in the leg in order to convince said suspect to give him a lead.  A lead that didn’t even pan out.  He’d have no trouble wiping the floor with our favorite wayward Stark.

MAL REYNOLDS (15)
BUFFY SUMMERS (2) WINNER


In the matchup I call “The Whedon War” our favorite space smuggler…um okay…our second favorite space smuggler Mal Reynolds found himself up against the vampire slaying extraordinaire Buffy Summers.  With their equal wit and back up partners thrown out the window, it would come down to physical prowess and resume.  Buffy has Mal beat with the physical.  And With Firefly lasting barely a season, Mal’s body count can’t compare with Buffy’s resume of a thousand vamps slain, including her true love and DRACULA, hellmouths closed, demons decapitated, werewolves whacked, cyborgs stopped, inter-dimensional beings beaten, singing succeeded, and a triumph over the first evil EVER.  Buffy stakes her claim to victory.  And no the result have nothing to do with the fact I’ve had the hots for Sarah Michelle Gellar since I Know What You Did Last Summer. 

RAYLAN GIVENS (3) WINNER
DARYL DIXON (14)

Nobody loves a redneck good ol’ boy until the zombie apocalypse hits.  When it does, it pays to have an ass kicking guy like Daryl Dixon by your side.  However, someone like Daryl Dixon is the type of guy US Marshall Raylan Givens HANDLES on a day to day basis in Harlan County.  I’d love to see the snark off before the shoot out alone.  However, Raylan dispatches Daryl lickety split.

OMAR LITTLE (4) WINNER
B.A. BARACUS (13)

Really?  The only two black guys in this conference go against each other?!  As the lone black reviewer for Simplistic Reviews, I would be offended if it wasn’t for the fact THIS IS THE ONE MATCHUP I’D ACTUALLY PAY TO SEE.  Baracus is, by name alone, a badass.  However, he still has the discipline to follow Hannibal’s orders.  Omar Little don’t follow no one but Omar Little.  Hell, even the President loves him.  Now, you can either be a soldier, or you can go out to the streets and get into some real gangsta sh*t.  In the immortal words of Omar Little himself, “Indeed.”

XENA (5) WINNER
RICK GRIMES (12)

Seeing as for the first three seasons of Walking Dead, all Rick Grimes did was get run over and guilt tripped to death by his despicable wife, how long do you think he’d last against A WARRIOR F*%KING PRINCESS.  Xena doesn’t eat his brains but does eat his lunch.

TITUS PULLO (6) WINNER
RON SWANSON (11)


One is a savage,  no nonsense, barbarian of a man who is more comfortable wielding an axe in an ancient Colosseum than listening to the dodderings of the heads of state.  The other is Titus Pullo.  Ron Swanson was a man born in the wrong century for sure.  However, Pullo is more man than even Ron could handle.  The mustache did give him a fighting chance though.  

KARA “STARBUCK” THRACE (10)
SHERLOCK HOLMES (7) WINNER

Man, I hate to see two of my favorite TV characters go at it.  Starbuck is seriously one of the most groundbreaking female characters television has seen in a while.  She doesn’t nearly get the recognition she deserves.  The best thing about Kara, however, is the worst thing.  She leads with her emotions at all times.  Something the world‘s greatest detective could easily exploit.  And unless your last name is Adler, your feminine wiles aren’t working on good ol’ Sherlock.  Sherlock wins…no sh*t. 

TYRION LANNISTER (9) WINNER
MICHAEL WESTEN (8)

The conferences first and only upset comes from the House of Lannister.  Michael Westen and Tyrion Lannister are great at thinking on the fly and surviving with whatever means they can muster.   However, Michael has been a sucker for manipulation from the beginning.  And no one manipulates better than Tyrion.  I’m not even gonna think of what he’d do to Fiona.  With the betting public in a frenzy this month, it is a good thing that a Lannister always pays his debts. 

March 23, 2013

Spring Breakers

Spring Breakers – Guilty

Every once in a while, a film comes around that changes your life.  A film that you’ll tell your kids and grand-kids that ushered in a new wave of cinema.  A film that will be a landmark moment where all film-goers collectively get out of their seats, and initiate “the slow clap.”  A film that will be broken down in film schools across the world and film historians will bring up in conversations with the likes of “American Beauty”, “Casablanca”, and “8 1/2.”  Well, this isn’t this film, not even close, but despite what a lot of people have said, and are saying, “Spring Breakers” might not be pretty, but it just might be the biggest guilty pleasure film in recent memory.

“Breakers” can be lumped into two categories; it’s either a soft-core porn that is cashing in on the popularity of “Disney girls” who are trying to break free of their kiddie-image, but they are being exploited just as bad, if not worse.  Or, you can look at it as a caricature of Spring Break culture that you might have seen on MTV back in the early 1990s, and an expose on small town life versus “the real world.”  I promise, I will not dig that deep into this movie, because if you go into “Breakers” looking for deep meaning or a reason why the movie was made you are going to miss out on a film that is super fun, super awesome, and super stupid, but stupid in that way that you might have said back in the 1990s, ie, STUPID FRESH!

In case you haven’t heard, the plot is simple.  Four friends, Candy, Cotty, Brit, and Faith, don’t have enough money to go to Spring Break in Tampa/St. Pete, Florida so they do what any rational young college student would do; rob a restaurant to finance their trip.  After their successful robbery, the four girls head to Spring Break for the time of their lives, that is until they’re arrested and the party is over, or is it?  Bailed out of jail by a small-time gangster named Alien, played by James Franco in probably his most memorable role to date, things go from bad to worse for the four friends as they leave behind their dreams of the best Spring Break ever, and it turns into a nightmare…..or does it?

Part of the fun of “Breakers” is not knowing fully what the film is about.  Yes, at heart, it’s a skin flick that shows PLENTY of boobs, close up shots of crotchal areas, and any parent’s nightmare of what their precious little boys and girls are doing in vacation resorts around the country from late March to April.  Yes parents, your kids are probably having unprotected sex all over the place, while doing funnels of Natty Light, after doing coke off a townie’s ass.  C’mon, we’ve all been there before.

A few things surprised me about “Breakers” besides the fact that I truly enjoyed it, almost too much in fact.  Say what you will about Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens; but they can act.  Yes, I said it, they can act.  I was almost surprised at how down and dirty they got, especially Hudgens, who gives the 2nd best performance in the film, but that best performance goes to Franco, who creates a character that is part Tony Montana, part Saul from “Pineapple Express,” and part rapper Paul Wall.  His creation of Alien is in fact other worldly, and his “Look at my shit!” and for lack of a better term, gun blowjob scene, are the highlights of the film. And like my co-reviewer said in his “OZ” review, Franco loves to mug for the camera, and he’s at his best in “Breakers” completely self-aware that he is in complete control of character.  Oh, by the way, for you wresting fans, your old pal Double J, Jeff Jarrett, makes a cameo as a Jesus freak.  Yes, that Jeff Jarrett.

This film is polarizing, and people are either going to love it or hate it, just like most of Harmony Korine’s films.  Let me put it this way, if you’ve seen “Kids” and “Gummo” and you hated them, save yourself  the money or just be lame and watch “The Croods” or “Tyler Perry’s: Temptation.”

“Spring Breakers”…….”Spring Breakers” forever………

Fun Fact:  Jeff Jarrett, while wrestling for the WWE, was a six-time Intercontinental Champion, a record at the time, which was broken in 2004.

March 19, 2013

The Simplistic Reviews March Madness Bracket of Good and Evil


*Update 3-20-2013*

Good day all, just an update to this little, I guess you can call it a contest now.  On Friday we will be starting the draw for the Simplistic Reviews March Madness Bracket of Good and Evil.  To try and make things as random as possible we will be using Random.org to decide who moves on in the bracket.  To make things even more “random” we will be making the draw for each match-up, FIVE TIMES, so the best of five will win the match-up.  All brackets will lock on March 23nd, 2013 at 6:00 pm EST.

The first round will run from 3-23-2013 to 3-26-2013. 
The second round will run from 3-26-2013 to 3-28-2013.  
The Sweet 16 will run from 3-29-2013-3-30-2013.  
The Elite 8, 3-31-2013.  
The Final Four, 4-01-2013
The Championship on 04-07-2013

Remember if you participate by filling out a bracket and send them to simplisticreviewsblogspot@gmail.com
you could win a beer from Matt’s Private Stash ( the list will be named later based on turn out).

Original Post, March 18th, 2013

Since we LOVE to be cliched and trite here at Simplistic Reviews, we only felt it appropriate to jump on the bandwagon, whore ourselves out, and create a list of characters from TV and Film (sorry, no cartoons on this one) that we’d like to think are the most vile and evil, as well as the most heroic and dedicated to truth, justice, and sometimes, but mostly not, the American way.

Oh by the way, it’s also NCAA Tournament Time….no big deal.  But what better way to co-opt a time honored tradition like treating athletes like indentured servants and flying out to Las Vegas, doing a lot of coke, and gambling away your daughter’s college fund, than creating OUR version of the NCAA tournament with, what else, make believe people from the movie screen and TV box;  presenting, The 1st Annual Simplistic Reviews March Madness Bracket of Good and Evil, (copyright pending).

For the next few weeks, we will be breaking down the bracket, click HERE for a downloadable version, and pitting characters together in a fight to the “death” to see who will prevail.  Will the goodness of good defeat the badness of bad?  Will a Cinderella story like The Toxic Avenger mop up the competition (see, what I did there) or will Jack Bauer shoot enough people in the head on his way to save President David Palmer……from purchasing bad auto insurance.

Send us your picks, comments, inquiries, hate mail, and general gripes and we will take them under consideration, and by consideration I mean burning them in effigy, so to make things easier for us, send a glamor shot of yourself.  But in all honesty, print out the bracket below, or save paper and just copy it, open it in a program on either a PC or Mac and have a ball.

Print or view the bracket, HERE

March 18, 2013

Barney’s Version

Barney’s Version: Touching

134mins/Drama/2010 IMDB link
Late one night I was surfing the channels on the good old TV in which honestly only shows nothing but pointless crap. Then I caught this film with only 15 mins left, It drew my attention so much I quickly found the next day it would play and scheduled it; with the single greatness advancement in the living room the DVR! Well it was a long time ago and I completely forgot about it, then one day boom there she is! There is that film one night that caught my attention.
So I watched it and its very good. If you might be looking for a film to watch I would say watch this film you wont be disappointed. 
The film is about Barney, played by Paul Giamatti and his life. He is this extremely flawed man who has issues. He meets beautiful women who he ends up meeting (and marrying), including meeting a woman at his wedding and becomes caught so badly by her beauty. Barney’s father is played by the wonderful Dustin Hoffman. No one really does what Hoffman can do, he steals every film he is in. Honestly when he pops up within 5 secs he puts a smile on your face. We meet Barney’s friends as well as his other issues we as people go through. But the relationship with his father is my favorite part. I love this relationship where Dustin jokes around one moment and the next knowing and talking about his son’s flaws then grabbing him with his words and pretty much saying I love you, I stand with you and I trust you. 
You will see what I mean, lovely and funny stuff you just don’t see much of anymore.

Side note: The makeup team has done one of the best jobs I’ve seen in years. Fantastic job on aging the actors!… Unlike this film.

March 16, 2013

Oz The Great And Powerful

PROPER

Little self involvement time.  I haven’t written a review in a while mainly because I’ve been busy preparing content for our monthly podcast here at Simplistic Reviews. (SELF PROMOTION DURING SELF PROMOTION…SO AWESOME)  Anyway, when the days between reviews started piling up, I became cautious picking the PROPER comeback movie to review next.  (I was this close to reviewing Parker there for a minute, so count your blessings.)  This week, however, I happened to go against my previous judgement and against many preconceived assumptions by the masses and watch a film that made me anxious to talk about.  The film is Oz The Great And Powerful.  A movie that I have heard maligned even before it came out.   A movie that certainly does not deserve it.

Oz The Great And Powerful is a….DUN DUN DUUUUN!!!…prequel to the 1939 cinematic classic The Wizard Of Oz.  And for those who have been hiding under a rock in a cave in Timbuktu, The Wizard of Oz is about a Kansas girl named Dorothy who is whisked away by a tornado and sent to a magical world where wicked witches are the norm, munchkins are a plenty, and lions are cowardly.  Dorothy journeys to find a supposed wizard who can send her back home.  That wizard…74 YEAR SPOILER ALERT…turns out to be just a man behind a curtain named Oz.  Oz The Great And Powerful fills in all the blanks on how he got there and why certain witchly characters got their wickedness.

Now maybe because I’ve had to rewatch Star Wars episodes 1 through 3 for my 9 to 5 job, I’m standing on a hyperbole soapbox here.  However, I don’t regret saying that Oz The Great And Powerful is one of the greatest….DUN DUN DUUUUN!!!….prequels ever made.  My favorite, by the way is The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly.  When the familiar pieces of The Wizard Of Oz began to neatly fall into place in Oz The Great And Powerful, I got the same feeling I had when Blondie picks up that iconic poncho.  The same feeling I didn’t get when Lucas clumsily dropped his pieces on the ground, brushed off and forced onto me at the last minute.  The Good The Bad And The Ugly sets up a world that, frankly, is pretty easy to set up.  The Wizard Of Oz is anything but.  It has enough oddly shaped moving parts to make an Ikea salesman blush. (Rimshot.  Nailed it.)  One day I’ll have a discussion about how the land of Oz is just an imaginary place where one subconsciously goes to work out their inner issues.  A theme this film duplicates and also nails by the way.  However, for the sake of avoiding an even bigger monicker as an overly-analytical, auteur theory douche, I’ll stick with the simple things that make this film work.

I was very surprised that Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland disappointed me.  I thought that his famously quirky style would be perfect for the material.  It is why I was worried that director Sam Raimi might stumble into the same pitfalls with Oz The Great And Powerful.  Alice In Wonderland and The Wizard Of Oz are two worlds that are terrific at hiding morose, gruesome, and inappropriate subtext under colorful, shiny, childish window dressing.  Burton brought more of the morose subtext to the light, thus dragging down Alice In Wonderland away from what it was intended.  Whereas, Raimi keeps the balance and tone of his film’s predecessor.  I believe Raimi knew it was suicide to mess with a formula as delicate as The Wizard Of Oz.  Burton made subtext the focal point when he should have remembered it is the wonder the makes the world.  Raimi thrives here and never takes his eye off the ball.

Despite being an actor I very well should hate, I can’t help but like James Franco.  Perhaps it is his ‘in on the joke’ personality and the fact he never takes himself too seriously that disarms me.  His talent, when he’s trying, is undeniable.  This isn’t Franco’s finest work but I believe he’s perfectly cast as Oz.  Oz is a failed showman.  A man with the potential for great things, but seems to never be 100% genuine.  A man you want to expose as a fraud not laud as a talent.  Franco seems to fit the bill.  Since Spider-Man Raimi has seemed to know how to use Franco’s more unpopular tendencies.  His mugging for the camera never feels out of place in a Raimi film.  And his tender moments, ones that would be cheesy in any other film, seem right at home here.  Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams stand tall, where other actors would sleepwalk.  That includes Weisz’s great nod to, coincidentally Return Of The Jedi, and having a sorcery battle with Williams that rivals even that of Gandalf and Saruman.  But the stand out here is Mila Kunis.  She has been proving since That 70s Show that shes not just a pretty…pretty…pretty…damn she’s pretty…face.  It is probably known to all her role in the film.  However, I won’t spoil it other than to say she completely humanized and made me empathize with a character I thought would be impossible to.  

Oz The Great And Powerful isn’t the greatest film you’ll see this year by a longshot.  But it knows what it wants to be, it knows what it has to be, and accomplishes these things nearly perfectly.  Don’t believe me?  Close your eyes and imagine for a moment what you deem a PROPER…DUN DUN DUUUUN!!!…prequel to one of the most classic, iconic, and ‘out there’ films in almost the last hundred years.  Click your heals three times, open your eyes, watch Oz The Great And Powerful…then tell me I’m wrong. 

March 13, 2013

London Calling: Children of Men

Children of Men – Captivating

Lately in film, especially futuristic sci-fi fare, the preferred city of devastation is London.  It used to be that Godzilla would stomp Japan into oblivion, but of course we all know that giant lizards bred out of nuclear irresponsibility is completely far-fetched, right?  But putting fantasy away, London has been a hub the past decade or so for apocalyptic visions of the future.  From Rage viruses to an infertility pandemic, I’m not sure “Keep Calm and Carry On” would be enough for even London’s strongest citizens to get behind.  This brings me to 2006’s “Children of Men” one of the most captivating sci-fi films to be released in recent memory.
Here’s the scoop; we visit London in the not too distant future where there hasn’t been a reported new birth in nearly 18 years.  Just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse, the youngest person in the world, lovingly named Baby Diego, has just been murdered.  With the world in mourning, we follow happy-go-lucky Theo, played by Clive Owen.  Theo is the type of guy that loves to get high with his hippy friend Jaspar and get kidnapped by a terrorist group called “The Fishes” led by his former activist wife, Julian, played by Julianne Moore.  The plot thickens when it’s discovered that Theo is carrying some precious cargo, namely a baby in the belly of a young refugee girl named Kee.  With the government, crooked cops, and members of the terrorist group hot on his heels, Theo has no choice but to protect Kee and try and deliver her to The Human Project, a mysterious group researching why humanity become infertile so many years ago.

“Children” went largely unnoticed during its theatrical run, which is odd for how good this film really is.  The acting is spot on, the setting couldn’t feel more real, and the message is relatively universal.  Sure, there are some preachy moments, and even some of the imagery and names are obvious, case in point, the young girl Kee, (even though it’s technically pronounced “chi”) who just might be the “key” to civilization’s survival.  But those are minor quibbles.

Directed by Alfonso Cuaron, who some might know for “Y Tu Mama Tambien” or to an even wider audience as the director the best Harry Potter film installment “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.”  Some might disagree with that assessment of the “Harry Potter” franchise, but it was the moment that the series went from light-hearted and childish to dark, brooding, and serious.
Cuaron lends that trademark style to “Children” and creates a dystopian London where all hope seems to be lost, refugees are treated like Jews during World War II, and ethnic tensions are slowly coming to a head.  With all of that being said, Cuaron is still able to capture small glimmers of hope in a hopeless world, and some humanity in some of the more monstrous characters.  But the highlights of the film revolve around the long take action sequences which last upwards of 6 minutes.  Even though it has been debunked that these scenes are not one long take, the fact remains that these scenes highlight the film and create the most memorable moments in “Children.”

Despite the fact “Children” was critically praised, the fact it didn’t bank more at the box office was a crime in and of itself.  It’s also a movie I’m always shocked people have never seen; at that moment I slap them in the face, hand them the DVD, and bid them Godspeed.

Fun Fact:  In the Bexhill block scene, Theo can be seen wearing a London 2012 Olympics fleece jacket.

March 12, 2013

The Simplistic Reviews Podcast Late Edition: February 2013

Like the old cliche; “better late than never” The Simplistic Reviews Podcast is back, and we’re just as cliched as we were back in January.

In this February edition we wax poetic on the failings of non-Marvel Studios films, pass judgement on Bruce Willis’ latest John McClane adventure, “A Good Day To Die Hard,” and rip Seth MacFarlane a new one.

Plus, this time Matt is in the hot seat with another edition of “Word Association.”  From Harrison Ford to breast milk, nothing is off limits to Matt’s rage, while Justin and DJ have their feelings hurt by our cybernetic robo-babe, Julie.

All this and much more in our “late” February podcast, right here on Simplistic Reviews.

Click on the link below to download the podcast and enjoy folks!

Show Notes

Boycotting Non-Marvel Comic Films
A “Good” Day to “Die Hard”
Why Seth MacFarlane Sucks

FOR MATURE AUDIENCES ONLY.

Click HERE to listen to podcast

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