THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE (Released to Theaters USA 2017)

 

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 4.1|5.0 Starsìììì

The Lego Batman Movie—great animation—throws villains at the audience like raindrops falling from the sky once the Joker gets to the Phantom Zone. Scenes get messy and difficult to follow. Some villains are given prominence which helps and it is interesting to see which villains Warner Brothers sees as more significant than others. The movie is good, overall. It has a solid beginning and conclusion. The voice cast is well-chosen. The presentation and portrayal are good.

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline

 Batman fights Joker, again.

Additional Thanks

Thank you to Director Chris McKay for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producers Will Allegra, Matthew Ashton, Bradford Lewis, Benjamin Melniker, Steven Mnuchin, Zareh Nalbandian, Michael E. Uslan, and Jill Wilfert for making the film possible. Cast includes: Will Arnett, Michael Cera, Rosario Dawson, Ralph Fiennes, Siri, Zach Galifianakis, Jenny Slate, Jason Mantzoukas, Conan O'Brien, and Doug Benson.


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe?

 Yes. Overall, the movie tells a suitable to good story and throws in a little comedy as a bonus. At places it runs slow, but definitely works as a good child/adult share film for  a one-time watch.

Video Critique Available Here:

Ben Meyers

THE BEAR (Released to Theaters France 1988)

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 3.7|5.0 Starsììì

The Bear—average—starts a slow decline from its opening scenes. The focus is not on human character development but on a small bear's attempt to survive. It's a feel good movie not based in reality as in the scene with a cougar's attempt to eat the small bear and then leaving due to a large bear's threat behind the small bear. In reality this would be a show between two predators over the prey, the small bear. But, it is shown as a large bear protecting the small bear which would not be the case in nature. When an audience might think the film is hopelessly over, a few more scenes are thrown in as if to fill a time limit. The presentation and acting work at the okay to suitable level. There are some animal sex scenes in the movie.  

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images/Wikipedia

Storyline

A baby bear loses its Mother to an avalanche. He eventually goes on an adventure to find food and makes friends with a larger bear.  

Additional Thanks

Thank you to Director  Jean-Jacques Annaud for directing effort. Thank you to Producer Claude Berri and Associate Producer Pierre Grunstein for making the film possible. Cast includes: Bart the Bear, Youk the Bear, Tchéky Karyo, Jack Wallace, and André Lacombe.


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe?

Maybe. The camerawork for the animal scenes is interesting; but on the whole, the movie is average.

Video Critique Available Here:

Ben Meyers


FREE WILLY 3: THE RESCUE (Released to Theaters USA 1997)

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 3.8|5.0 Starsììì

Free Willy 3: The Rescue—better written than the last film. Although the acting is suitable and the presentation is good, the story itself needs a reality check toward the latter part of the film.  The movie is not great, but serves as an okay, easy-on-the-mind afternoon watch.

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline

 Jesse and Randolph work to save Willy and Willy's relatives from an illegal whaling boat.

Additional Thanks

Thank you to Director Sam Pillsbury for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producer Richard Donner, Arnon Milchan, Lauren Shuler Donner, for making the film possible. Cast includes: Jason James Richter, August Schellenberg, Annie Corley, Vincent Berry, Patrick Kilpatrick, Tasha Simms, Peter LaCroix, Steven E. Miller, Ian Tracey, Matthew Walker, Roger Cross, Rick Bergess, Roman Danylo, and Michael Dobson.

Buy a ticket? Yes? No? Maybe?

 Maybe. The movie can easily be followed and is a suitable/okay watch.

Ben Meyers

THE PARENT TRAP (Released to Theaters USA 1998)

 

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 4.1|5.0 Starsìììì 

The Parent Trap—good remake of the Hayley Mills' classic—uses the talents of Dennis Quaid, Natashia Richardson, and Lindsey Lohan to tell the bulk of its story. While the original Hayley Mill's movie is beyond question, the best of the two, this film is 'nothing to sneeze at'. It has a feisty, competitive beginning and shows high intelligence as the girls, after switching places, quickly improvise when in tight spots. The time spent learning each others roles in very different houses does seem a little far-fetched. In reality, it seems the switch would be discovered long before being revealed...but the busy schedules of each house can forgive some of that. The movie is a good remake and worth watching if merely because the story is so good. It's an easy addition to the home video library along with the Hayley Mills' classic.

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline

Two girls are sent to the same summer camp and discover that they not only look exactly alike, but have the same birthdate. They talk and find that their parents were divorced when the girls were infants and had split the twins between them.

 Additional Thanks

Thank you to Nancy Meyers for directing effort. Thank you to Producers Charles Shyer, Co-Producer Bruce A. Block, for making the film possible. Characters/cast include: Lindsey Lohan, Dennis Quaid, Natashia Richardson, Elaine Hendrix, Lisa Ann Walter, Simon Kunz, Polly Holiday, Maggie Wheeler, Ronnie Stevens, Joanna Barnes, and Hallie Meyers-Shyer, 


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe? 

Yes. This is a good watch and tells a good story.  This film has good portrayal and presentation. It's Lindsey Lohan at her best. Good work for all who made the remake story possible.

Video Critique Available Here:

 Ben Meyers

THE SECRET: DARE TO DREAM (Released to Theaters USA 2020)

 

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 3.8|5.0 Starsììì 

The Secret: Dare to Dream—quiet message movie—starts well and connects to its audience. The writing is not powerful nor is it impactful. The acting is suitable/good and relies softly on Josh Lucas and Katie Holmes. The movie is supposed to show how to effectively use a secret as revealed in the Rhonda Byrnes' book The Secret and the documentary movie of the same name. This film, The Secret: Dare to Dream, does intimate the ideas from the documentary, but fails to be impactful,  meaningful, or even life changing to those who watch this film, as the documentary might be to those who understand at a very deep level that there is something elemental that works for you when you seek it. It's about knowing what you want and moving toward that. The Secret: Dare to Dream works as a clean and honest love story.

Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline 

An engineering professor helps a widow and her children who are barely skimming by financially.

Additional Thanks 

Thank you to Director Andy Tennant for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producers Skye Byrnes, Frank Fertitta, Lorenzo Fertitta, Elissa Friedman, Paul Harrington, and Christopher H. Warner, for making the film possible. Cast includes Katie Holmes, Josh Lucas, Celia Weston, Jerry O’Connell, Sarah Hoffmeister, Aidan Pierce Brennan, Chloe Lee, Katrina Begin,


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe?

Maybe. It is a suitable watch as a clean love story, but does not deliver the full gold standard of the original documentary. 

 Video Critique Available Here:

Ben Meyers

HERBIE FULLY LOADED (Released to Theaters USA 2005)

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 4.0|5.0 Starsìììì

Herbie Fully Loaded—when it did not seem the Herbie series could be revived, along came Lindsey Lohan. This is a good/ suitable film for the whole family that serves up a star-studded cast. The script has good writing that gives that nice push into the next era of the Herbie story.

 Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline

A teenaged girl graduates and her dad takes her to a junk yard for her first car. 

Additional Thanks

Thank you to Director Angela Robinson for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producers Michael Fottrell, Charles Hirchhorn, and Tracey Trench for making the film possible. Cast includes: Lindsay Lohan, Michael Keaton, Matt Dillon, Breckin Meyer, Justin Long, Cheryl Hines, Jimmi Simpson, Jill Ritchie, Thomas Lennon, Jeremy Roberts, E.E. Bell, Peter Pasco, Mario Larraza, and Patrick Cranshaw,


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe?

 Yes. This movie is good enough to revive the Herbie series quite nicely. The movie's script has been well-written and flows well.  this is a good enough film to easily revive the series quite nicely.

Video Critique Available Here:




Ben Meyers


NOBODY (Released to Theaters USA 2021)

 

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 4.2|5.0 Starsìììì 

Nobody—uses writers from John Wick—gives its audience a surprise from its beginning to its conclusion. This hard hitting, outstanding action film  completely defines the fun watch that moves explosively fast. Bob Odenkirk is the actor taking out gangsters in rapid fire succession. The writers made this movie. Great scripting.

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images 

Storyline 

Hutch Mansell nearly kills some henchmen and saves a woman on a bus. But one of the henchmen is a Russian mafia kingpin’s brother and the story is on.

Additional Thanks 

Thank you to Director Ilya Naishuller for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producers Marc S. Fischer, Derek Kolstad, Tobey Maguire, and Annie Marter for making the film possible. Cast include Bob Odenkirk, Aleksey Serebryakov, Connie Nielsen, Christopher Lloyd, Michael Ironside, Colin Salmon, RZA, Billy MacLellan, Areya Mengesha, and Gage Munroe. 


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe? 

Yes. This is a good watch with a wonderfully-written story. 

Video Critique Available Here:



Ben Meyers

AQUAMAN AND THE LOST KINGDOM (Released to Theaters USA 2023)

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 3.8|5.0 Starsììì

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom—messy—has all the usual superhero/god story challenges. The special effects are probably the best part of the film. But there are scenes where it looks like actors have been cut out and pasted into the scenes. The movie works at the okay, but not great level.

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline

 Black Manta is back to fight against Atlantis.

Additional Thanks

Thank you to Director/Producer James Wan for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producers Pete Chiappetta, Walter Hamada, Andrew Lary, Anthony Tittanegro, Galen Vaisman, for making the film possible. Cast includes: Jason Momoa, Patrick Wilson, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Amber Heard, Nicole Kidman, Randall Park, Temuera Morrison, Dolph Lundgren, Martin Short, Jani Zhao, Pilou Asbæk, Indya Moore, John Rhys-Davies, and Vincent Regan.


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe?

 Maybe. If the audience desires to finish the series, then this is the film. But the movie has so much to overcome with script, portrayal, and acting challenges that it seems futile in both monetary and time investment to start it.

Video Critique Available Here:



Ben Meyers


THE BEEKEEPER (Released to Theaters USA 2024)

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 4.2|5.0 Starsìììì 

The Beekeeper—quality story told well—has Jason Statham working a movie perfectly suited for him as unlike Meg and Meg 2 as night from day. This is a 'do not miss'  film for the adult audience. It relies on high intrigue and serving justice 'Beekeeper' style. 

Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline 

Adam Clay goes after high-level computer conmen who empty bank accounts through a series of manipulative questions that give them access to liquid assets.

Additional Thanks 

Thank you to Director David Ayers for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producers Mark Birmingham, Andrew Golov, and Thom Zadra, Making the film possible. Cast includes: Jason Statham, Emmy Raver-Lampman, Bobby Naderi, Josh Hutcherson, Jeremy Irons, David Witts, Taylor James, Phylicia Rashad, Jemma Redgrave, and Minnie Driver.


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe? 

Yes. This is a 'need to watch' movie that both educates and entertains. Tailored to the adult share watch it creates good, after-viewing discussion. It uses some fighting moves that are smooth and effective.

Video Critique Available Here:



Ben Meyers


FREE WILLY 2: THE ADVENTURE HOME (Released to Theaters USA 1995)

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 3.8|5.0 Starsììì


Free Willy 2: The Adventure Home is a suitable watch with a predictable conclusion. The acting is okay to suitable. The presentation is good. But the film seems almost thrown together toward the middle and the conclusion as if writers are unsure about what would work and what would not work. The movie works best for the teen audience.  

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline

Jesse tries to save Willy and Willy's sister from an oil spill.

Additional Thanks

Thank you to Director Dwight H. Little for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producer Richard Donner, Arnon Milchan and Jim Van Wyck for making the film possible. Cast includes: Jason James Richter, Francis Capra, Mary Kate Schellhardt, August Schellenberg, Michael Madsen, Jayne Atkinson, Mykelti Williamson, Elisabeth Peña, Jon Tenney, Paul Tuerpe, M. Emmet Walsh, John Considine, Steve Kahan, and Neal Matarazzo,


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe?

Maybe. It is an easy-on-the-mind afternoon watch that works at the 'okay' level.

Video Critique Available Here:



Ben Meyers

THE LITTLE MERMAID: ARIEL'S BEGINNING (Released to DVD USA 2008)

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 3.8|5.0 Starsììì 

The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning—prequel story to The Little Mermaid storiesis the third release in the film series. The movie works as a suitable children's watch with its inside story of Ariel from her childhood to her adulthood. The movie serves at a little higher level of quality than part 2. The film has good/suitable voiceovers, acting, presentation, and portrayal.

Film Poster Courtesy of Wikipedia  

Storyline 

Music is banned in Atlantica.  

Additional Thanks

 Thank you to Director Peggy Holmes for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producer John Lasseter, and Producer Kendra Haaland for making the film possible. Cast includes: .Jodi Benson, Samuel E. Wright, Jim Cummings, Sally Field, Parker Goris, Tara Strong, Jennifer Hale, Grey Griffin, Jeff Bennett, Kari Wahlgren, Lorelei Hill Butters, Kevin Michael Richardson, and Rob Paulsen.


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe?

 Yes. The movie works for children. Adults may choose to watch with their children, but not find the interest that can be found in other animated features like Tangled or Zootopia

Video Critique Available Here:



Ben Meyers

  

DIARY OF A WIMPY KID: DOG DAYS (Released to Theaters USA 2012)

 Ben Meyers’ Rating: 4.2|5.0 Starsìììì

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days
 is actually a good and worth watching film that enlarges on the Heffley family interrelationships, especially  Greg Heffley. The acting and story are good and the presentation is really good.   Zachary Gordon reprises his role for a third time as Greg Heffley, along with Robert Capron, Devon Bostick, Steve Zahn,  Rachael Harris, and others. This film is worth the one time watch and the three movies would be a good addition to the family home video library. WOW! This movie really improves over the second film in the series and provides good comedy.    

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline

 Greg Heffley and Rowley endeavor to survive summer vacation. 

Additional Thanks

Thank you to Director David Bowers for directing effort. Thank you to Executive Producers Jeff Kinney, Jeramiah Samuels, for making the film possible. Cast includes: Zachary Gordon, Steve Zahn, Robert Capron, Devon Bostick, Rachael Harris, Peyton List, Greyson Russell, Karan Brar, Laine MacNeil, Connor Fielding, Owen Fielding, Melissa Roxburgh, Philip Maurice Hayes, and Terence Kelly, 


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe?

Yes. This good watch reprises the roles of major cast members and improves over the second film in the series. Thank you to everyone who helped produce the movie.

Video Critique Available Here:




Ben Meyers

SNOW DOGS (Released to Theaters USA 2002)

Ben Meyers’ Rating: 3.8|5.0 Starsììì

 Snow Dogs—not great, but suitable—does not take a great deal of mental energy to watch. Cuba Gooding Jr. works for the movie’s watch and easily becomes the main onscreen focus with his terrific, diversified facial expressions.

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images

 Storyline

 A man searches for his biological father and mother in Alaska.

 Additional Thanks

Thank you to Director Brian Levant for directing effort. Thank you to Producer Jordan Kerner for making the film possible. Cast includes Cuba Gooding Jr., James Coburn, Sisqo, Nichelle Nichols, and Graham Greene.

Buy a ticket? Yes? No? Maybe? 

Yes. This is not the usual Alaska dog race movie. It has its comical moments. It serves as a suitable afternoon movie watch.

Video Critique Available Here:



Ben Meyers

 

SHILOH 2: SHILOH SEASON (Released to WorldFest-Houston International Film Festival, Houston Texas USA 1999)

  Ben Meyers’ Rating: 3.8|5.0 Starsììì

Shiloh 2: Shiloh Season improves its on-going story and has a certain charm to it as it works to improve the life experience of the previous owner of Shiloh.  

Film Poster Courtesy of Google Images

Storyline

 Judd Travers still wants his dog back but after an auto accident, Marty works to understand Judd and begins a process to establish peace between neighbors.  

Additional Thanks

 Thank you to Director Sandy Tung for directing effort. Thank you to  Executive Producer Seth Willenson for making the film possible. Cast includes: Zachary Browne, Scott Wilson, Michael Moriarty, Ann Dowd, Caitlin Wachs, Rachel David, Rod Steiger, Marissa Leigh, Joe Pichler, Colin MacDonald, Dawn McMillan, John Short, Bonnie Bartlett, and Kathleen Rose,


Buy a ticket
? Yes? No? Maybe? 

 Maybe. It may work for a children's watch but adults may find it a bit too predictable.

Video Critique Available Here:


 

Ben Meyers

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