Category Archives: Movie Reviews

Movie Review: Night in the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian

This past weekend we went to see Night in the Musuem: Battle of the Smithsonian. I hate sequels…they never quite capture the magic of the first. We enjoyed the movie, and I think the shouting Pharoah, the bobble-head Einsteins, and Amelia Earhart, were definitely wonderful characters. We laughed and we enjoyed the story, but it just didn’t capture our hearts the way the first one did.
We give it three stars.

Movie Review: Race to Witch Mountain

We went to see Race to Witch Mountain at the Dollar Movies this week. I liked the Witch Mountain movies that I watched as a child and so was looking forward to seeing this. This movie stands on its own. There were a couple of nods to the original movie (they ended up in a RV and Ike Eisenmann who played Tony in the original movies, played a sheriff in this one).
The movie was fast paced, fun and kept all of our interest throughout the film. If you take it for what it is…a fun, kid friendly movie, then your family should enjoy this Disney creation!
We gave it 4 stars.

Star Trek is a Hit!

Back in the early 1970s, I rushed home every day after school so I could watch Star Trek reruns in the afternoon. I loved Star Trek! The handsome Captain Kirk, the witty Dr. McCoy, the logical Mr. Spock (whom my father would fret me by calling squirrel ears). The adventurous journeys, the exotic aliens, the witty comments, and the chemistry among the original cast all kept me mesmerized. The worst punishment I remember from my childhood was I wasn’t allowed to watch Star Trek for a whole week because I didn’t listen to my babysitter one day!
Little did I know that just an hour away, my future husband was just as aptly watching the show that would launch four decades of great science fiction. He liked the show so much that he asked his mother to take him to the ABC tv station so he could meet the crew. He was sure that the Enterprise was there at the studio and he could get on board if only his mom would take him there.
Over the years, we have watched all of the Star Trek movies and the Star Trek mutations. Our least favorite was The Next Generation series. Captain Picard was just too ‘nice’. Probably our favorite was Deep Space Nine. Voyager was also good. We tried watching Enterprise, but at the time, the channel it was on didn’t come in very well and we got tired of watching the snowy show, but what we saw of it did look good.
So on to yesterday. We had been waiting in anticipation to see the new Star Trek movie. Some of the early trailers had us concerned about how they were running the storyline and the changes that it looked like were being made, but we were still growing very excited seeing what J.J. Abrams came up with (after all, we love LOST).




We got tickets for us and for the kids and seated ourselves front and center. The next two hours flew by. The action, the characters, the laughs…J.J. Abrams has come up with a hit! Not only has he recreated the show so as to attract a whole new generation of fans, but there was so much about the movie that was put in to appeal to those of us who have followed these characters for years. And while the story centered on Kirk and Spock, the other characters were given much stronger roles than in the usual series. Sulu, the sword expert. Uhura, the communications expert, and Chekov…the whole reason he looked so young was because he was a genius! I loved this movie!
J.J. Abrams could not have done a better job than what he did. We are ready to go see the movie again!
We give this movie two thumbs up!

Movie Review: The Kite Runner

I heard about this movie when it first came out but am only now getting ready to see it. I am sorry I didn’t see it sooner, but so very glad that I saw it now.
The Kite Runner is based on a best selling novel by Khaled Hosseini. This is a wonderful story of two children. One who is fiercely loyal and one who, as many children will, abandons his friend in the worst kind of way. We are given some insight into life in Afghanistan. First with the invasion of the Soviet Union and then under the tight rule of the Taliban. One child and his father flee, the other child is left behind to make live as best as he can in a horrendous situation.
20 years pass and an opportunity for redemption of a childhood wrong appears. It is seized upon and we are reminded of the love and friendship of two young boys and their loyalty for one another.
I enjoyed learning more about Afghanistan, its people, and their traditions. I loved the story. It pulled me in at the beginning and held me through the very end. I give this movie 5 stars!

Movie Review: Goodnight Mr. Tom

Goodnight Mr. Tom is just one more example of why I love Netflix. Netflix suggested that based on other things I had enjoyed, I might enjoy this movie as well. And sure enough, I thought it was an excellent story! I had never heard of it and chances are I wouldn’t have run across it if it hadn’t been for Netflix. I would have missed out on a very touching story.
From Netflix:
A bitter old man is transformed when he takes in a war refugee in this moving Masterpiece Theatre adaptation of Michelle Magorian’s World War II novel. When young Willie (Nick Robinson) is evacuated from London and sent to live in a small village, grumpy Tom (John Thaw) begrudgingly agrees to harbor the boy. Gradually, Tom manages to coax the distrustful lad from his shell, and when it’s time for Willie to return to London, the two realize the depth of their bond.
This movie shows a side of the war that we see in movies such as one of the versions of Peter Pan and The Chronicles of Narnia. The backdrop for war hid many atrocities that might have otherwise been discovered. It was only through the stroke of fate which brough these two main characters together, that two lives were saved.
I give this movie 5 stars:)

Movie Review: Peter Jackson’s King Kong

When Peter Jackson’s version of King Kong came out, Daniel went to see it, but I couldn’t for some reason or another. Well, this weekend he came home with it for us to watch. I really, really enjoyed it. Just watching the scenery and ‘monsters’ were awesome. And what a love story! I think I saw the original version of King Kong years ago, but it didn’t strike me so much as a love story. Watching Peter Jackson’s vision of King Kong, it was apparent that the movie was an amazing love story.
It is long and there are upsetting scenes (after all, there are monsters), but I highly recommend this movie. Watch it and immerse yourself in it the way Peter Jackson meant. It gets 2 thumbs up and 5 stars.

Movie Review: The Changeling (2008)

When I saw previews for The Changeling, my ears immediately perked up to listen because one of my favorite scary movies is The Changeling with George C. Scott. I thought at first this was to be a remake.
But, as I listened and watched, I realized that this was a different animal all together. It was based on a true story and directed by Clint Eastwood. So last night, Daniel and I sat down to watch it. If you enjoy true story movies, you will probably like this movie. Let me tell you that it is not for those weak in the stomach and if you absolutely cannot stand anything with violence to children, you may want to skip it.
The story starts out with a mom and her son and very soon the son is missing. Months later, the LAPD brings this woman another child who she says is not her son and despite the overwhelming physical evidence, the LAPD says she is mistaken. The way the system treats this woman is an appalling story. I was on the edge of my seat throughout the movie and we give it two thumbs up or five stars:)

Movie Review: Bedknobs and Broomsticks

Last night the kids and I watched an oldie but a goodie! They had never seen Bedknobs and Broomsticks, but it was a favorite of mine when I was growing up along with Mary Poppins and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. So I had put this in my handy dandy Netflix queue and this week it arrived.
Angela Lansbury does a lovely job as always in this entertaining Walt Disney film where we are treated to a juxtaposition of animation and real life special effects. The story is an enjoyable one and the kids laughed at all the right spots (you worry about that sometimes with these older films). The movie is 2 hours and 19 minutes long, but the kids sat there, enraptured, through the whole thing.
So if your children haven’t seen this age old film, I highly recommend it for your next family movie night!

Movie Review: Gone But Not Forgotten (2004)

Here is another treasure I found on Netflix. I really enjoyed this movie. I found it to be interesting and suspenseful. It is a long movie, clocking in at 172 minutes.
From the Netflix movie jacket:
Television Armand Mastroianni helms this faithful adaptation of Phillip M. Margolin’s best-selling novel, co-startting Brooke Shields, Lou Diamond Phillips and Marilu Henner. When an Oregon woman disappears without a trace, the only clue is a withering black rose with a note that reads ‘gone but not forgotten’ Now it is up to a tough female attorney to follow the evidence, find a missing private eye and unravel the mystery.
I am not sure about the Oregon part since the story takes place in Sacramento and New York. This is a story of heinous crime, injustice, and how the past comes back to kick us in the butt. I also enjoyed seeing the way the lawyers and paralegals were at work, though I have no idea of how accurate that part was.
Not everyone likes the movie Gone But Not Forgotten, so you will have to check it out for yourself.

Movie Reviews: Amazing Grace, One Night with the King, The Andromeda Strain

Wow…sometimes, you just get lucky and manage to pull not one, not two, but three good movies in a row! This is what I did on Saturday! And I wanted to share some great movie titles with you in case you were looking for something wonderful to watch next weekend!
First off, I must say again how much I love Netflix! Without that awesome company and their easy to use website, there are so many movies I would never have watched and in all likelihood would never have even heard about! THANKS NETFLIX!!!! I wouldn’t know what to do without you!
Okay….on to the good stuff!
Amazing Grace is a powerful, powerful movie! I know so much about the fight against slavery here in America, but knew very little about the fights fought elsewhere in the world. This story tells how the English turned the tide in their own country without falling into Civil War. From the cover: Based on a true story, this historical drama starring Ioan Gruffudd tells the story of William Wilberforce, an 18th-century English politician who fought for the abolition of slavery. Despite staunch opposition, Wilberforce waged an aggressive campaign using boycotts, petitions and slogans. This story will remind you of the power one determined person has (with help from the Almighty!) I give this movie five stars!

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