The Martian – A Movie Review

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Feb 292016

The_Martian_PosterDuring a manned mission to Mars, Astronaut Mark Watney is presumed dead after a fierce storm and left behind by his crew. But Watney has survived and finds himself stranded and alone on the hostile planet. With only meager supplies, he must draw upon his ingenuity, wit and spirit to subsist and find a way to signal to Earth that he is alive. Millions of miles away, NASA and a team of international scientists work tirelessly to bring “the Martian” home, while his crew-mates concurrently plot a daring, if not impossible, rescue mission. As these stories of incredible bravery unfold, the world comes together to root for Watney’s safe return.

Director: Ridley Scott
Writer: Drew Goddard (screenplay), Andy Weir (book)
Stars: Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Peña, Sean Bean, Kate Mara, Sebastian Stan, Aksel Hennie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Vincent Kapoor, Benedict Wong
Runtime: 144 min; Rated: PG-13; Genre: Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi; Released: 02 Oct 2015

We watched this Saturday evening. I’d been wanting to see it for a while. Overall impressions, it was OK at best, but not nearly as good as I expected. Lay didn’t like it at all, but he’s never very keen on sci-fi. Continue reading »

Transsiberian – A Movie Review

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Nov 102008

Transsiberian Movie PosterAn American couple, Roy and Jessie, decide to take the long way home from their recent sojourn in Asia on the legendary Trans-Siberian Express train from Beijing to Moscow. On their way, they meet another couple from the West, Carlos and Abby, with whom they quickly form a familiar bond that often unites fellow travellers away from home. When Roy accidentally gets separated from the group at a stopover, Jessie begins to realize that their compatriots aren’t exactly who or what they seem to be. The real danger begins to surface as a deceitful Russian detective and locals terrorize Jessie in this unforgettable journey.

Genres: Art/Foreign, Drama, Thriller and Crime/Gangster; Running Time: 1 hr. 51 min.; Release Date: July 18th, 2008 (limited); MPAA Rating: R for some violence, including torture and language.

Starring: Woody Harrelson, Emily Mortimer, Kate Mara, Eduardo Noriega, Ben Kingsley

Directed by: Brad Anderson

I honestly don’t remember seeing previews for this film, but I was only in limited release, so I’m guess maybe it wasn’t shown widely here in Tampa. It certainly should have been. It was an excellent story that was well acted and well edited. Anderson even captured a bit of the Hitchcock style in that much of the films suspense, while very palpable, was subtle and just under the surface. This understatement, to me, often offers the most profound effect. The acting was immense, the landscape was immense, it was all great! There are a few graphic scenes which really make a strong point. There is no skirting issue, it is right in front of you. Emily Mortimer fit her role so well it was scary, it could be reality, as with Woody and Ben.

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