Ensembles Take Back the Holidays

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What to Watch in the Theater:
 A Bad Moms Christmas (R) is in theaters now. This raunchy romp adds another generation to the mix – the Moms’ moms are on hand for the holidays – adding even more stress, as the original Mom’s vow to take back Christmas. It’s a fun film, with a superbly cast ensemble, but pales a bit in comparison to the original.
Our rating: 3.83 out of 5

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Justice League (PG13) opens today. Wonder Woman proves she’s got the chops to be a leader, as we mourn a fallen hero and get to know some new ones. Ben Affleck’s Batman is growly and bedraggled, but he’s shouldering a heavy burden in this film. We look forward to seeing what’s next for this ensemble, and each of the individual heroes.
Our rating: 4.5 out of 5

What to Watch at Home (Or Not):
All We Had (NR) Katie Holmes shows her range in this depressing but hopeful story about a homeless mom and daughter, and their devotion to each other as they strive for a better life. An interesting collection of characters adds to the drama, showing that it really does matter who you choose to have in your life.
Our rating: 3.17 out of 5

Their Finest (R) This film, about a woman taking on a new role in WWII, shows the ups and downs those at home encountered while doing their part during wartime. Behind the scenes at the Ministry of Information, it’s a rollercoaster of triumph and tragedy, with some splendid performances and a lot of heart.
Our rating: 4 out of 5

Plus box office results, movie news, what’s out on DVD & Blu-Ray, and more!

Entertaining Literary Works on Film

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What to Watch in the Theater:
Thor: Ragnarok (PG13) is in theaters now. The element of humor really boosts the entertainment value of the latest (#17) chapter in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The combination of characters in this story is a real winner, with different scenarios and locales blending together perfectly to make multiple storylines merge seamlessly. Make sure you stay all the way through to the very end of the credits!
Our rating: 4.83 out of 5

MOTOE

Murder on the Orient Express (PG13) opens today. This remake of the Agatha Christie classic does not disappoint. Some of the characters may be a little over the top, but that lightens the pace of the film. Even though the story may be well-known, the casting, scenery and other details breathe new life into a familiar plot.
Our rating: 4.5 out of 5

What to Watch at Home (Or Not):
Undercover Grandpa (PG13) This obviously Canadian production features James Caan as the titular character, who seems to be losing his faculties, based on the outrageous stories he tells his family. His real-life special ops experience comes in handy when he needs to gather his cronies for one last mission – to save his grandson’s girlfriend from kidnappers. Not the best, but not a bad watch on Netflix, as far as family espionage movies go.
Our rating: 3.17 out of 5

Stephen King’s It (TV14) Watching this 1990 version for the first time makes us even more curious about the next installment of the 2017 version. An amazing late 80s/early 90s cast makes this a fun watch. The way the story is told, in flashbacks, is an interesting way to lay out the details. Look for it on cable TV, as it’s not currently available for rental or streaming. When you find it, it’s worth fast forwarding through the commercials, even if it is 4 hours long!
Our rating: 4.5 out of 5

Plus box office results, movie news, what’s out on DVD & Blu-Ray, and more!

From True Stories to Outrageous Ones

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What to Watch in the Theater:
Thank You for Your Service (R) is in theaters now. This movie, based on a true story, shares the difficulties those serving in the military face when returning home from duty. It’s an important issue that deserves our attention. Well-acted and well-paced, this movie is worth a watch (but note the R rating – this is not a family-friendly movie).
Our rating: 4 out of 5

SKDAM

Same Kind of Different as Me (PG13) is in theaters now. This inspiring film, also based on a true story, shares the special relationship between a family and a homeless man they slowly befriend. It shows how all their lives were changed, because a selfless woman had a dream about making a difference. The focus here is on people and relationships, without being preachy.
Our rating: 4 out of 5

What to Watch at Home (Or Not):
The Meyerowitz Stories (R) This Netflix original from Adam Sandler is the story of an extremely dysfunctional family that reunites as the father declines in health. There’s not much comedy here, and the slice of life plot moves a little too slowly, but we have to give Adam props for assembling such a stellar cast.
Our rating: 3.33 out of 5

Killing Hasselhoff (R) This over the top comedy performed better than expectations. It’s a silly premise to begin with – a man with financial problems wants to knock off David Hasselhoff to win half a million in a celebrity death pool. It turns into a fun romp, and may actually be worth 80 minutes of your time.
Our rating: 3.75 out of 5

 

Plus box office results, movie news, what’s out on DVD & Blu-Ray, and more!

Disastrous Results

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What to Watch in the Theater:
Geostorm (PG13) is in theaters now. This big budget disaster movie was two-thirds entertaining  and one-third disappointing. On the one hand, predictable, and on the other, not as bad as it could be. Includes some sci-fi, some heart, some twists, and a whole lot of bad weather! Spoiler alert: The scene on the poster doesn’t happen in the movie!
Our rating: 3.33 out of 5

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Suburbicon (R) opens today. The crime in this Coen Brothers movie just keeps getting more violent as the body count grows. Of course, the premise is bizarre and the characters are over the top. We have differing opinions on the inclusion of race relations in the story. Julianne Moore shines – she has definitely found her niche in this and the recent Kingsman sequel!
Our rating: 3 out of 5

What to Watch at Home (Or Not):
A Ghost Story (R) This story of a young husband haunting the house he shared with his wife is NOT a scary movie. It alternates between hauntingly beautiful and excruciatingly boring. This is one of those films with lots of dramatic shots and little dialogue or action. There’s a confusing time loop that just seems to make the 92 minutes drag by even slower. Props to Casey Affleck for committing to hang out in the sheet for so long!
Our rating: 3 out of 5

The Nightmare Before Christmas (PG) This is hands-down our absolute favorite Halloween movie (and one of our Christmas faves as well)! The animation, the story, the music, the characters! This family-friendly film, that bridges two holidays, has it all. If it’s not already part of your collection, you can find it streaming on Netflix.
Our rating: 5 out of 5

The Babysitter (TVMA) This Netflix original is entertaining in a silly, gory kind of way. It’s not the best comedy horror out there, but it does provide an interesting premise, some laughs, some new ways to kill people who are trying to kill you, and LOTS of blood.
Our rating: 2.75 out of 5

 

Plus box office results, movie news, what’s out on DVD & Blu-Ray, and more!