Movie Review: The Magnificent Seven *****


The Magnificent 7 is a remake of the 1960 classic western movie that starred cool guys Yul Brynner, Steve McQueen, and James Coburn. This one stars Denzel Washington as a cowboy who is hired to lead a group of mercenaries to keep their town from the control of the evil robber baron mining company. He assembles a group of 7 misfits who try to help the town fight back against an army of bad guys.

The story is very straightforward. The character development is excellent. 9 main roles are researched and formed into people we care about. There is a lot of horseback riding, a lot of shooting, a lot of killing, along with some burning and explosions. It earned its PG-13 rating. I liked everything about this movie more than the original that I watched on Turner Classic Movies just the other day, with the exception of the musical score. The story is believable in front of an outstanding backdrop of the Rocky Mountains during the Wild West era. This is one of the best westerns I have seen in a long time. I loved it. 5 out of 5 stars.

Published in: on September 25, 2016 at 6:22 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Movie Review: Snowden *****


Snowden is the true story about the guy who released secret NSA documents to the media. Edward Snowden is a self-taught computer coding genius who dropped out of high school, received an administrative discharge from the Army, and became a private contractor with the CIA, NSA, DIA, and other government agencies. His intellect, conscience, and loyalty are compromised when he witnesses covert operations that are deemed normal, but are morally reprehensible. He is torn about what is pragmatic, what is his job, and what is his duty. He decides to work with the press to secretly get them documents that would uncover the level of spying that the NSA is doing on regular Americans. His plan is successfully executed, he goes on the run, and gets stuck in Moscow.

I think that most people recognize Ed Snowden’s name, but do not realize exactly what he was trying to do. This film identifies Snowden and shows who he was, what he did, and why he did it. It explains the level of information that has been gathered about our enemies, our allies, and our citizens. It shows the soul searching that lead to what some will call an act of treason and others and act of patriotism. This is an important movie that will be in the news again when his asylum runs out. It may be renewed, he could be smuggled out, or he could be extradited. This story is not over, yet. Snowden wants to come home and face the consequences, but he wants to be tried in a public court. This movie is filmed like a news expose. This Oliver Stone movie is over 2 hours long. The story is told very well. There are some bonus scenes during the credits. The movie is excellent for the information it provides. The actor looks like Snowden. The story is outstanding. I loved it. 5 out of 5 stars.

Published in: on September 16, 2016 at 7:09 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Movie Review: Sully *****


Sully is the real life news movie about the airline pilot that safely landed a jet in the Hudson River. Tom Hanks plays Sully. Birds get sucked into both engines of a jet causing it to lose thrust. Without power, Sully decides to make a forced water landing, and saves the lives of everyone on board. The movie is based on the investigation that follows. It presumes Captain Sully is guilty of making a bad decision when there was an airport just a few miles away where he might have safely landed the plane. The movie focuses on the Traffic Safety Board’s investigation and Sully’s testimony that eventually leads to his exoneration.

Sully is directed by Clint Eastwood, which automatically makes it a must-see movie. The acting is great. The story is familiar, but I did not remember the details of the investigation. There are a lot of flashbacks that accurately depict Sully reliving the event to try to remember every minute detail to reason that his decision to land in the river was a better choice than hoping to make it to an airport. There are two bonus scenes during the credits that are worth waiting around to watch. I love true stories. This one gets 5 out of 5 stars.

Published in: on September 16, 2016 at 5:40 pm  Leave a Comment  
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