The Lucky One – a film review

The Lucky One is a romantic-drama, based on the book of the same name, written by Nicolas Sparks. Released in 2012, it stars Zac Efron (“Logan”), Taylor Schilling (“Beth”), and Blythe Danner (“Ellie”).

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Trailer (via Youtube)

While I don’t think that any “Sparks” movie could ever come close to topping the masterpiece that is The Notebook, The Lucky One is another favourite of mine, and one that I have watched numerous times. Especially this time of year (I live in cold, snowy Canada), it is relaxing to watch a movie based in the South, and I do love me some southern accents. The Carolinian scenery is breath-taking. I think I need to take a trip down that was sometime.

Efron plays an American Marine recently returned from Iraq where most of his buddies died. He escaped a fatal blast by stepping out of range just seconds before, to pick up a picture he noticed fluttering in the wind.

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Upon his return to the States, he decides to track down the girl in the photo and return it to her, and thank her for saving his life. He doesn’t expect to fall for her, and her son, before he can figure out how to explain.

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The Lucky One is a sweet movie. I love how Efron depicts his character. Although Logan seems to suffer from PTSD, it isn’t the focal point of the film. He isn’t depicted as being a danger to himself or anyone else, and is certainly more stable than Beth’s ex-husband, a local cop.

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You wouldn’t want to me alone with this guy

It is amazing to see how naturally Logan takes to being a father-figure to Beth’s son and just what a good man and hard worker he is. He inspired me to work hard in my own life, and to look for a man with many of the qualities that he depicts. Beth and her son will never need to wonder about their security in the future, because Logan will make sure they don’t want for anything, and that they are safe and happy together.

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I loved how he was there for Beth as a friend, before they became romantically involved. She is initially an unpleasant character, filled with pain, and verbally lashes out at him multiple times, but is more than redeemed shortly on. Her brother, the one who lost the photo in Iraq, didn’t make it back alive, and Logan can certainly relate to her grief and anger. Together, they help each other through and grow.

** Minor spoiler, as to whether the movie ends happily or not:

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The Lucky One is a great romantic comedy. It has drama, and tears, but ultimately, the film ends positively, with Logan and Beth’s relationship in-tact. I have watched this movie multiple times and definitely recommend it to you.

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Tomorrowland – film review

Tomorrowland (2014) is a futuristic movie about a second dimension that is inter-layed over Earth. The people who live there are the brightest and most optimistic from our planet, and are selected by highly advanced robots mandated to seek them out.

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From imdb:

Bound by a shared destiny, a teen bursting with scientific curiosity and a former boy-genius inventor embark on a mission to unearth the secrets of a place somewhere in time and space that exists in their collective memory.

Trailer

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Tomorrowland’s magic stems from the enthusiasm of the young teenage protagonist and the wonder of the technology of the future. It was inspiring to see such a clean city full of life, to witness the jetpacks and trackless sky-trains and space travel.

Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see very much of that. In “present day”, the city of Tomorrowland is collapsing and seems nearly empty except for robots and security personnel. The residents of Tomorrowland know that our world is collapsing and despair and depression seem the dominant attitudes among them. Many of the former wonder-kid inventors have been expelled from the city, including the character played by George Clooney.

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What I didn’t like about this movie is that it didn’t live up to the fabulous potential of such an imaginative idea. The writing was sub-par and sort of unravelled half way through. It felt like someone got lazy, like they came up with a great idea and then didn’t have the motivation to see it through.

It is established that Tomorrowland will continue on unimpeded even though our world is ending, but everyone seems to have left it anyway. There are a few robots here and there and the city’s ruler and his minions. That’s it. Most of the city is in a state of disrepair. There is never any explanation given except for “they built something they shouldn’t have”.

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Athena: “They built something they shouldn’t have. And I think you can fix it”.

But that isn’t entirely true. And even if it is, their world isn’t being destroyed by this invention, ours is.

In many ways, Tomorrowland feels like the technological version of Neverland. You don’t have to grow up there. Emotionally, “creationally”, or even physically. I wish that the wonders of that world – what surely drew in audiences from the trailer, especially adults – had been explored further.

Unfortunately, between the lazy producing and writing, the movie fell far from expectations. It is supremely disappointing to see a fairly original idea fall flat, especially from a powerhouse like Disney.

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Movie Review – We Are Marshall

We Are Marshall (2006) is an amazing movie.

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It is based on a true story.

In 1970, a plane carrying the university’s football team, athletic staff and assorted other members of the community crashed just outside of town, on a return trip from an out-of-state game. All 75 people on board died. I think this remains the deadliest sports tragedy in American history.

We Are Marshall is about the community grieving this loss and coming together to form a new team. Even though it’s a “football movie”, it is so much more.

The film was so well done. I’ve seen it at least a half a dozen times, and I still get goosebumps every time that plane goes down. And teary-eyed throughout. The loss the entire Marshall/Huntington community must have been feeling is unimaginable but you get a sense of it. This movie is endearing and uplifting, something I can watch over and over. You can feel the power and emotion behind the story. I certainly believe that the actor and producers creating it really cared about the people involved.

It stars Matthew McConaughey, Matthew Fox and Kate Mara (who is my favourite actress). Here is the trailer.

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Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation

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Mission impossible had a huge opening this summer and stayed at the top of the box office for two or three weeks. I’m not huge fan of the series or of Tom Cruise himself normally, but it was at my local theatre and I needed an easy/cheap night out so I went with one of my best friends to see it. I am so glad, I did it was amazing!

Benji is my fav character (the redhead)

Benji is my fav character (the redhead)

The thing that struck me the most about this movie is that it was hilarious. I was laughing the whole way through. I definitely did not expect that. It is the crazy, complete over-the-top Tom Cruise shenanigans that you expect from the Mission Impossible series, but there is enough story-line and humour to keep this non-Mission iImpossible loving girl roaring with laughter.

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Seriously, I was worried I was going to pee my pants at one point.

I’m a little late because it took me forever to get this blog post written but if it still playing near you, you should definitely check it out. It is the perfect boy-girl movie, so it would be a great idea for a date night event

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