Here's what I watched since last Thursday:
Authors Anonymous: I will talk more about this movie Monday on this blog and Indie Writers Monthly. Basically it's a mockumentary about a group of would-be authors who meet in person. When a ditzy blond named Hannah actually gets published, the ensuing jealousy and rivalry shatters the group. While a lot of movies that involve writing and books get it wrong, this one gets a lot right, though it still has kind of a snobby legacy author view of self-publishing and ebooks. Definitely a great movie for the struggling writer in your life, which if you're reading this is probably you. (4/5)
Lone Survivor: Non-spoiler alert, Marky Mark survives a mission gone wrong in Afghanistan. (It is called Lone Survivor.) Basically him and 3 other SEALs are supposed to kill some evil Taliban guy, but when some goat herders stumble on their position, all Hell breaks loose. A good thing is that the four guys don't look that much alike, so you can actually tell them apart during the fighting, unlike when I watched Blackhawk Down and I couldn't keep track of who was who. And then it turns into Saving Private Ryan as we send in a bunch of guys to get the guy, which means like a dozen people dying trying to save one. Which on one hand you admire the courage of these brave heroes and on the other it seems pretty reckless. But if I'm the lone survivor then by all means send all the Marines, Army, Navy, and Coast Guard to get me. Anyway, it's nice this shows a somewhat nuanced picture of the situation. Though the SEALs are all really good and the Taliban guys are all really bad, they do at least show that not all Afghans are evil and at the same time they're not all sitting around hoping for us to "liberate" them. (3/5)
That Awkward Moment: This is the kind of movie that you think from the commercials/previews is going to be funny. And then...it's really not. The bloopers in the credits were pretty much funnier than anything going on in this. It's basically Sex and the City only with dudes. Zac Efron is the confirmed playa, some guy who looks like young John Cusack is his confirmed wingman, and then Michael B. Jordan is a married doctor who finds his wife is cheating on him. Then Zac Efron meets some girl who ends up working at the firm where he makes book covers. And young John Cusack starts hooking up with a girl affiliated with their circle. And Michael B. Jordan tries to work it out with his wife. After a while I found myself drifting away from this. It was just cliche upon cliche and very predictable. And then everything gets all heavy and maudlin before the cliche Big Romantic Gesture. Yawn. (1.5/5) But this does explain why so many book covers feature shoes--it's because when women see shoes, it stimulates their brains.
Superman: Unbound: In the "Silver Age" back in the 50s/60s there was this goofy notion that a Kryptonian city called Kandor had been shrunk down and stored in a bottle. Later this was tied to Superman's nemesis Brainiac, who basically goes around like the Borg, only instead of assimilating people, he just puts a representative city in a bottle in his ship. And when he shows up on Earth, mayhem ensues, with Superman and Supergirl having to fight the evil robot horde. Though it turns out that Brainiac is a bit like Howard Hughes. It's kind of weird to think a sophisticated alien lifeform can be defeated by mud. But there you go. (3/5)
D.E.B.S: Did you ever think it would really be awesome if Charlie's Angels went around in schoolgirl uniforms all the time? That's essentially the premise of this movie. A group of four schoolgirls try to apprehend the evil Lucy Diamond...except one falls in love with her. Overall the hammy acting, clunky dialog, and sub-Sharknado-level production values made McG's movies look like Spielberg. And I still have no idea what the fuck DEBS stands for or why anyone would think that girls in schoolgirl outfits would make good spies. I mean, is there anything more conspicuous outside of a strip club than a hot young girl in a schoolgirl outfit? And how would a multiple-choice test show you're good at lying? I mean do you answer the questions wrong? Then how do you differentiate between good liars and idiots...wait, that explains some things. But I'm sure Sterling Archer would love to work for an agency with that dress code for female agents. Anyway, I'm sure this never made any Michael Clarke Duncan retrospectives after he died. With good reason. (1/5)