Sunday, December 6, 2009

Everybody's brother is up in the armored air.

So so so, it has been a while since a good movie review, eh? Granted, if I had my way this would not be the case... but my reviewing talents have been given to the Paul and Young Ron show at the moment and they have first dibbs. However, there are some days where that times get too hectic (with news and sport happenings, not to mention guests - more on that later) for a good movie review which means.......
PanClayke... AT THE MOVIES! Brothers:
Much like Maguire in this film i but my body through hell and back in order to see something I love and that is a movie with Natalie Portman (however, this love has gone by the wayside recently after a rip to 'Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium). This movie, however, was the slid-y thing on the Etch-A-Sketch in the sense that it erased all former offiliations with past roles these characters might have played. Maguire is no longer Peter Parker and Portman could not be farther away from Queen Amidalia. And, lets not forget the other boy in the band... who will be remembered, but not labeled, as one of the last people to sleep with Health Ledger.
Kidding aside, the performances in this film are powerful and genuine, the director really put some work into the acting and you can tell. It also refuses to fall into the political satire of the U.S's occupancy in the middle east, which is very pleasant. I just wanted to see a good movie and didnt need to be reminded of something i saw the night before last when Obama adressed the nation.
While the war itself may not be addressed, what does hit home is the PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) a solider suffers after he/she is told/forced to kill another person and then throw back into mainstream life where the biggest problem we have to deal with the the poor HD quality on our flat screen T.V's
However, for those of you searching for a hanky in preperation for a tear jerker... dont worry as there is also a lot of light humor, expecially in the beginning. It is an ectremely interesting juxtaposition when paired next to the situation in the Middle East. i kid you not when you go into one scene smiling and leave the next wondering what the hell just happened. This evokes an extreme emotion from the audience and sets us up for something that will eventually make us all feel something we were not expecting.
That being said, this movie is not infallible. The story is great and the acting is stellar but there is soemthing to be said about 'playing it safe'. It reminds me of the contestants on Top Chef who refuse to cook Foie Gras because its more difficult in spite of the better flavor they would get for the dish in the end. There is so much room to push the envelope with this movie, so much potential that was not taken in order to not piss anyone off too much before the oscar nominations go out (in this critics opinion). Though you will walk out of the theater satisfied with your movie and totally getting your money's worth... the fact that they didnt push it will sour the critical viewer.
4.5/5 Pancakes (Iran, Iraq, I-Loved-It!)
I'm gonna write a letter to change the title to 'yourmored' as I do not wish to offiliate myself with this one. Seriously, i think the only thing that saved this one for me was that i walked out of 'Transylmania' to go see it (was going to review Transylmania, but the fact i walked out speaks for itself)
This story is also about a veteran finding it hard to deal with the day-to-day now that hes back in the states. Unlike brothers, though, this one focusses more on the financial aspect than the mental. Soldier boy is then up in these Hoe's... and by hoe, I mean an armored car that his friends on the job attempt to rob by way of 'the perfect scheme'. However, this scheme arises more questions than it wraps up and is shadowed only by the facade of an everyday joe taking a stand against five guys with scatter guns and enough desperation to want to rob an armored car. Seriously, i dont care how strong a sense of right you have... there needs to be a LOT more emotion behind making the decsion to oppose forces like these and even more when it comes to the decision to put the character there in the first place.
The cast, however, featured some favorites that we always like to see here at PanClayke. Matt Dillon, Cowboy Curtis (lawrence fishburne) and Peter Petrelli from Heroes. However, rather than spend upwards of $15 for a matinee and a soda i would say spend the money on a pizza, six pack and rent Hard Rain (aka... the more attractive cousin of Armored)
2/5 Pancakes

Apparently the title Everybody's Fine concerns the casts acting as well. Do not get me wrong... this is actually pretty ok movie and i would recommend it for adults who still like a date-night and/or children who like to see their parents get choked up. The cast is very nice and easy on the eyes but with the exception of DeNiro the chaacterization is a bit sub-paar. DeNiro even goes as far as to break out of his persona of Paul Vitti and hits home with a widower who is unbeknownst of what is going on in his childrens lives. The ending is also something of a nice little surprise unless your an avid movie-goer and know the few formulas that hollywood is using right now when it comes to the 'reveal' at the end of a movie.

The low points in this movie lie in the supporting roles and how they all lack a background. They are nice to watch and serve their purposes to propel DeNiro thorough is journey but, again, they are pretty one dimensional and are called to be so much more than that. Its hard to pinpoint the cause, whether it is directing or writing, but it was still a good movie all in all. If i had to choose between this and Brothers... the latter wins everyday of the week and twice on Sunday.

3/5 Pancakes

Last, but not least, we have the third installment of the recent Clooney Trilogy. Someone has definitely been pushing as we near the oscar season and i am happy to say he definitely gets a hit with this one. After the 'eh' feelings after 'the men who stare at goats' i found this movie to be witty, original and generally well done.
Im gonna sum it up like this, if you liked Juno, Thank you for Smoking, Whip It, basically any movie thats got witty bantar and finds the humor in the intense normalicy of life then you will dig this movie. Clooney is not only awesome at being rather than playing a part but the classic look that we fall in love with time and time again is alive and well. The supporting roles are also someting to write home about with each one having specific moments to recant and quote as you walk out of the theater. At the same time, when you are walking out your going to be happy with the ending. Not gonna give anything away but there are definitely a couple WTF moments that will leave you happy you saw this one. Yet, the quoteage was the main star of the show for this critic (one favorite: "Think of me as yourself... just with a vagina). All in all it was a good way to spend the evening and you will not regret paying for this one.
The only let-down in this one was that there were a couple of moments that tended to drag, but that comes to be expected when your making a movie based strongly on the day-to-day rather than holding up in an armored car (again, do not see Armored).
4/5 Pancakes
To sum up, when your choosing your movie, if your looking t laugh see Up in the Air and go see Brothers if the tear ducts havent been used properly in a while.
Well, Ladies and Gentlemen, there you have it. Tune in next time for more reviews (restaurant and film) not to mention a training update for the upcomming Titan burger. Until then this is PanClayke reminding you that the director of Armored has the first name 'Nimrod'. I thought i would make sure we all made note of that.


  1. i may be a little slow on this front but did you just insult Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium? i am offended as i love that movie to death but i can see past that flaw of yours as you are so awesome.

  2. i have seen one of movie which shows financial situation of America. it was some thing Michael Moore Has done (if i am correct). capitalism:a love story. after that Up in the air movie best shows financial problems and employee stress through out this movie.