‘When We First Met’ Is Your Typical Romantic Comedy

By Julia Wilson, Edited by Anthony Peyton

Netflix has released many original movies this year, one of which being the romantic comedy When We First Met.

When We First Met tells the story of Noah, played by Adam Devine (Pitch Perfect, Workaholics), who is in love with his best friend Avery, played by Alexandra Daddario (Baywatch). Upset that the love of his life and best friend is about to marry another guy, Noah finds himself in the bar him and Avery went to the night they met. He gets into the photo booth at said bar, and it ends up taking him back in time to three years ago when the pair first met.

Noah then gets stuck in this loop of traveling back in time to figure out how he could change what he did to make Avery end up with him and not some other guy.

When I explain the plot I know it sounds totally ridiculous, and it is, but it does have a twist that you wouldn’t expect. I won’t spoil what it is, but I do think that twist is the most redeeming quality of the movie.

The plot of this movie is pretty typical with the whole friendzoned element, but at least it does something different with it.

Although this is not the funniest romantic comedy I’ve ever seen, I do honestly like the story. I found it entertaining. It did just what I wanted it to when I decided to watch it which was to provide me with 97 minutes of pure entertainment without having to think too much.

The acting in this movie is certainly nothing to rave about, but Devine is naturally a funny guy so that definitely works in the movie’s favor. But this isn’t meant to be a serious movie so lovable actors that can play the roles they’ve been given is really all you need.

Is this movie groundbreaking or Oscar worthy? No. But it wasn’t meant to be. It fulfills its purpose and that’s good enough for me.

Overall, if you’re like me and have a guilty pleasure for cheesy rom coms then grab yourself a bucket of popcorn and have a nice night in. However, if you’re looking for a serious movie with jaw dropping acting and some kind of commentary I would skip this Netflix original.


My Rating: 68%

Acting: 2.8/4

Cinematography: 2/4

Story: 3/4

Enjoyability: 3/4

 

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Film Forecast Friday: June 1st

On Friday June 1st we have…

1. Adrift

2. Upgrade

3. Action Point

4. American Animals

5. A Kid Like Jake

Julia’s Predictions:

This is an interesting week because for the first time in a while there are no big blockbusters being released. Out of the movies that are being released I think Adrift will have the biggest box office numbers. It has notable actors Shailene Woodley (Fault in Our Stars, Divergent) and Sam Claflin (Me Before You, Hunger Games) in it and I’ve seen a lot of marketing for it.

I think Action Point and Upgrade will do alright. I haven’t heard too much about either of them, but Action Point has Johnny Knoxville (Jackass) in it which will likely bring out audiences. Also, Upgrade is a Blumhouse Productions film and those tend to do well.

American Animals is absolutely amazing and I strongly recommend you go see it. We have already reviewed it, so if you need any more convincing to go see it check out our review!

Finally, A Kid Like Jake which honestly I didn’t know was a movie until today. It has Jim Parsons in it so maybe it will attract some Big Bang Theory fans?

Anthony’s Predictions:

I am beyond excited for Adrift with Shailene Woodley and Sam Claflin. This will also be the moneymaker for the week at the box office, even if it will not make quite as much as previous weeks.

I have heard so much about American Animals that I’ve gotten very excited to see it. It has such a unique group of actors in it (including Evan Peters!) so I know that I’ll enjoy it already.

I definitely forgot Action Point and Upgrade were even coming out this week. I don’t really have a high opinion on them but I believe they will do about the same at the box office.

A Kid Like Jake won’t be too crazy spectacular, but should be fun because of Big Bang Theory’s Jim Parsons, as he is in it.

‘American Animals’: A Brilliant Portrayal of a True Story

By Julia Wilson, Edited by Anthony Peyton

American Animals is one of my favorite films I’ve seen this year. From the way the story is told, to the brilliant acting, I absolutely loved it.

American Animals tells the true story of four college students, played by Evan Peters, Barry Keoghan, Jared Abrahamson, and Blake Jenner, who attempt to carry out an art heist.

This film is one of the best tellings of a true story I have ever seen. They have the unique element of having the actual people talking about what they remember from the heist and what happened leading up to it, and then the actors act it out. This unique way of breaking the fourth wall is similar to that of I, Tonya which featured interviews, but in American Animals it is from the actual people themselves.

I loved this element of the film because it gave the story more credibility to have the actual people guiding the story. Also, if some of the actual people remembered the story differently the actors would act out both versions which I found to be the most honest telling of the story the filmmakers could possibly give.

The direction in this film, done by Bart Layton, was phenomenal. The way it was shot worked to convey the emotion of a certain part of the film. For most of the film the shots were slow and calculated to illustrate the calm meticulous planning of this heist, yet during and after the heist the shots shifted to fast and frantic to illustrate the panic and frenzy following the heist.

Honestly, Evan Peters deserves an Academy Award for his performance in this film. He plays Warren, who is basically the mastermind and driving force behind the heist. His character is quite complex as he is seen as simple minded by society, yet plans out this whole art heist. Not only is he emotionally all over the place, but he provides a lot of the comedic relief throughout the film and Peters does this perfectly. Which is especially evident when you see an interview with the real Warren switch over to Evan Peters acting out a scene.

This film really had balance. It had intrigue, as it was based on a true story. It had comedic relief throughout the film, and it had the right amount of intensity and suspense that kept you on the edge of your seat.

 
American Animals comes out on June 1st, and if you don’t see it you are really missing out on one of the most intriguing and brilliantly told films based on a true story.


My Rating: 94%

Acting: 4/4

Cinematography: 3.7/4

Story: 3.8/4

Enjoyability: 3.5/4

 

The Rocky Comedic Adventures of ‘Solo’

By Anthony Peyton, Edited by Julia Wilson

Easily one of the most highly anticipated movies of 2018, Solo had a lot to prove. It definitely didn’t help that most people went into the movie assuming it was going to be bad. I can’t blame it for trying to prove everyone wrong.

In this Star Wars Story, a young Han Solo (played by Alden Ehrenreich, ) is in the initial stages of becoming a smuggler with his best buddy Chewbacca while trying to balance an unfortunate relationship with Qi’ra (Emilia Clarke, Game of Thrones). He meets Beckett (Woody Harrelson, The Hunger Games, Now You See Me) along the way as well as a very intelligent robot named L3-37 and Lando Calrissian (Donald Glover, Atlanta).

As expected, all of these characters affect the story in some way or another, whether it be for entirely comedic purposes or actual damage. The comedy in this is, unfortunately, going to have to be one of my negatives.

Star Wars has gotten into this habit of trying to make every single droid as successful and hilarious as K-2SO in Rogue One, when it’s just not going to happen. L3-37 makes some decent jokes (one being about equal rights for droids), but it feels so obvious that the writers are forcing it.

To future Star Wars Stories writers, stop trying to make the droids as funny as K-2SO, it’s not going to happen.

The movie itself wasn’t the most fun to sit through of the Star Wars franchise. In fact, it may be one of the least enjoyable yet. I had never found myself so bored for the majority of a Star Wars movie than I did with this one.

Luckily, it made up for that with its last 20 minutes which were actually pretty entertaining to watch. I say this because it’s in the last 20 minutes that anything wildly important happens, including a plot twist and introduction of a familiar character that I was saying, “uhm… what?” to.

The cinematography was beautiful, as it is in a Star Wars movie. It was beautifully made, even the camera work wasn’t nauseating like some movies have become nowadays. There were plenty of oddly named planets and several mentions of Tatooine, which I thoroughly enjoyed being a hardcore Star Wars fan myself.

Honestly, I have very mixed opinions regarding Solo. I don’t think it was bad, but it’s definitely in the bottom five of Star Wars movies. I wouldn’t go as far as saying it shouldn’t have been made because at the end of the day, it told a story about a character we all loved that we all wanted to know a little more about.


My Rating: 84%

Acting: 3.4/4

Cinematography: 3.5/4

Story: 3.4/4

Enjoyability: 3.2/4

‘Show Dogs’: An Alright Family Film

By Julia Wilson, Edited by Therese Gardner

Show Dogs, the combination of Miss Congeniality and Beverly Hills Chihuahua that nobody asked for.

In this movie, police dog, Max (voiced by Chris “Ludacris” Bridges), has to go undercover at a dog show with FBI agent Frank (Will Arnett) to catch an exotic animal smuggler and save a baby panda.

This movie was exactly what you would expect it to be, but it is a kid’s movie from a newer studio so expectations aren’t exactly high. I will say that I don’t feel like this is the kind of movie that is funny for both kids and parents. Most of the comedy was based on immature jokes that are really only funny for kids. It didn’t have the intelligent, well-thought-out humor of movies like Zootopia that works for any age.

This movie also did not have any kind of bigger message that other kids movies have to draw in the parents. The story really doesn’t have anything interesting or different to keep you engaged if you are above the age of 12.

This movie lacked the heartwarming charm of director Raja Gosnell’s other films like Scooby-Doo. I mean granted Scooby-Doo had the advantage of being about a beloved cartoon mystery gang, but the difference was that it had a likeable main character, interesting story, and compelling man and dog relationship that Show Dogs just lacked.

The one redeeming quality of this movie for me was that the actors really did try even though what they were given was absolutely ridiculous. Will Arnett and Natasha Lyonne, who played the FBI’s canine consultant (yes I am serious) Mattie, put all that they could into these absurd roles and made the emotions of these characters seem more real. The voice actors also did very well and their ridiculous voices were some of the funniest parts of the movie for me.

Show Dogs really is just your average kids movie. If you have a kid or a little sibling, this would be the perfect movie to take them to. However, if you were thinking about seeing this movie because you are a huge dog-lover just wait for Dog Days. Because you’ll be too busy cringing during Show Dogs to even enjoy all the cute dogs in the movie.


My Rating: 63%
Acting: 3.3/4
Cinematography: 1.5/4
Story: 2.5/4
Enjoyability: 2.8/4

‘Taco Shop’: Slapstick Comedy Gone Wrong

By Therese Gardner, Edited by Olivia Norwood

Despite the other wonderfully done comedies this year including Blockers and Game Night, the new Taco Shop is not all that it’s intended to be. While it is categorized as a slapstick comedy characteristic of broad humor, this film lacks any presence of it. As someone who loves a good laugh, I enjoy films with no social purpose except to make people laugh and feel good. This is definitely not one of those films. As a whole, this movie lacks any sense of direction and its message is vague.

Taco Shop follows Smokes (Tyler Posey), as he plans to resign from his job at Taco Dollar to open up his own taco shop. His plans get interrupted when he discovers his mother has recently lost her job and is now struggling with debt and the possibility of losing their house. As a result of their current financial situation, Smokes is forced to stay at Taco Dollar. The pressure continues to mount when a taco truck decides to park across the street from Taco Dollar causing a war to ensue, as both wish for success.

Can Smokes cooperate with his coworkers in order to save Taco Dollar? Well, obviously, the answer is yes since it’s a predictable film with no motivating meaning. By the end of the film, Smokes has saved Taco Dollar from being taken over by their competition.

One thing I disliked the most about this film was its cringeworthy nature and poor application of crude, sarcastic humor. This was only one of few projects for Director Joaquin Perea and it was not a memorable one. If you couldn’t already tell, I was not impressed even in the slightest. It wasn’t even stupid funny – just foolish.

I don’t want to be completely harsh, however, there were not many strengths, if any, within this film. Considering it is a remake of Taco Shop (2012), I’m not really sure what Perea intended to achieve. If there is anything to be learned from this film, it’s that not every film should be remade and not every director is capable of writing worthy comedy.


My Rating: 39.4%

Acting: 1.5/4

Cinematography: 2/4

Story: 1.8/4

Enjoyability: 1/4