Movie Review: Dope (2015)


Title: Dope Release Date: 19 June 2015 Director: Rick Famuyiwa Summary/Review: Growing up in “The Bottoms” of Inglewood, California, Malcolm and his friends Diggy and Jib get good grades, play in a punk band, and are obsessed with 1990s hip hop music and fashion.  As geeky misfits they have to navigate themselves around bullies, drug dealers,…

Movie Review: Zootopia (2016)


Title: Zootopia Release Date: March 4, 2016 Director:   Byron Howard and Rich Moore Summary/Review: Set in a world of anthropomorphic mammals where predator and prey have agreed to live together, Zootopia is a comic, animated film that smartly takes on issues of inequality that appear ripped from the headlines touching upon women’s rights, Black Lives Matter,…

Movie Review: Heima (2007)


Title:  Heima Release Date:  5 October 2007 Director: Dean DeBlois Rating: **** Review: Not your average concert film.  Sigur Rós returns to Iceland after a world tour (the title means “At Home”) and conducts a thank you tour of their island nation.  The band performs in community halls, an abandoned factory, on hillsides, and on a…

Movie Review: Kung Fu Panda (2008)


Title: Kung Fu Panda Release Date: 6 June 2008 Director:  Mark Osborne, John Stevenson Summary/Review: Another family movie night, inspired by a visit to the zoo.  Po is a clumsy panda working in a noodle shop who is a big fan of the Furious Five kung fu warriors.  He somewhat accidentally finds himself selected as…

Movie Review: Despicable Me (2010)


Title: Despicable Me Release Date: 9 July 2010 Director: Pierre Coffin and Chris Renaud Summary/Review: By my daughter’s request, I caught up with popular culture by finally seeing this animated family film.  Gru is a supervillain who is embarrassed by a younger and more successful villain’s heist.  As part of a plot to get back on…

Movie Review: 42 (2013)


Title: 42 Release Date: 2013 Director:  Brian Helgeland Summary/Review: This straightforward biopic documents Jackie Robinson’s first season with the Brooklyn Dodgers when he became the first black player to break through the color barrier in Major League Baseball.  It suffers from an excess of Hollywood dramatic moments, but mostly it’s true to life in showing…

Movie Review: Fight Club (1999)


Title: Fight Club Release Date: 1999 Director:  David Fincher Summary/Review: Scratch this off the list of movies everyone has seen except me.  Not that I hadn’t already known the basic plot details of the movie for some time.  Still that made it fun to watch for evidence of the big twist before it was revealed….

Movie Review: Over the Hedge (2006)


Title: Over the Hedge Release Date: 2006 Director:Tim Johnson & Karey Kirkpatrick Summary/Review: The kids picked out this movie about a ragtag group of animals who awake from hibernation to learn that their forest has been surrounded by suburban development.  A scheming raccoon teaches them that they can get food by raiding the human’s trash but…

Movie Review: The Big Short (2015)


Title: The Big Short Release Date: 2015 Director: Adam McKay Summary/Review: I wouldn’t think that The Big Short by Michael Lewis, a book about the investors who saw through the complex shenanigans around financial instruments leading to the great collapse of 2008, would make a great movie.  But director McKay and his cast and crew do a great job of…

Movie Review: Brooklyn (2015)


Title: Brooklyn Release Date: 2015 Director: John Crowley Summary/Review: I love immigration stories, and Irish immigration stories especially.  I’m sentimental that. But I really struggled reading the novel Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín.   It’s a beautifully written book that depicts the everyday challenges of a young woman alone in New York half a world away from her family,…