Ep. 80 – Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising, The Nice Guys, casting announcements for Thor: Ragnarok and Spider-Man: Homecoming, the new Star Trek Beyond trailer, and where to hear us on the radio!

May 22, 2016 by  
Filed under Podcast

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This week on The CineSnob Podcast, Cody and Jerrod are as sharp as ever as they review “€œNeighbors 2: Sorority Rising”€ and “The Nice Guys.”€ They also expertly tackle new casting announcements for a pair of Marvel films, “Thor: Ragnarok”€ and “Spider-Man: Homecoming.”€ Also, they tell where you can hear more of this aural mastery on the radio!

[00:00-10:16] Intro/”RiffTrax Live: Time Chasers”€ recap

[10:16-22:41] News: casting announcements for “Thor: Ragnarok” and “€œSpider-Man: Homecoming”

[22:41-30:39] Final “€œStar Trek Beyond”€ trailer reaction

[30:39-42:16] Reviews: “€œNeighbors 2: Sorority Rising”

[42:16-53:55] “The Nice Guys”

[53:55-1:02:56] Wrap up/tease

Click here to download the episode!

The Equalizer

September 26, 2014 by  
Filed under Jerrod, Reviews

Starring: Denzel Washington, Marton Csokas, Chloe Grace Moretz
Directed by: Antoine Fuqua (“Training Day”)
Written by:  Richard Wenk (“The Mechanic,” “16 Blocks”)

“The Equalizer” clearly owes its existence to Liam Neeson’s “Taken,” the Eurotrashy action film that kick-started the so-far Neeson-dominated movie genre of “old guy with a secret single-handedly takes out an entire cartel of bad guys,” only it seems to think it deserves more respect thanks to the presence and charisma of Academy Award-winning star Denzel Washington. It doesn’t, and if the film took itself less seriously, it might have been tons more fun.

Washington stars as Robert McCall, a quiet man living a quietly methodical life in Boston. Working at a Home Depot-ish hardware superstore, McCall is the model diligent employee, handling every situation with a smile and even taking personal time to coach his overweight coworker (Johnny Skourtis) who dreams of becoming a security guard if he can only make the target weight.  McCall’s evenings are spent in a diner, where every night he brings his own teabags and a well-worn book. He frequently shares conversations with teenage prostitute Alina (Chloe Grace Moretz), an aspiring singer who slowly opens up to McCall. One night after Alina goes missing after meeting a client, McCall discovers she has been beaten and put into the ICU. McCall pays a visit to her Russian mafia pimp, attempting to buy her freedom. When he is rebuffed, a switch flips and McCall draws upon some long-dormant training to brutally execute the entire crew. This, however, is only the tip of the iceberg, as the full-force of the Russian underworld comes after McCall, who must take them on all alone.

Director Antoine Fuqua (“Training Day”) indulges in far too many subplots to keep the movie as brisk as it needed to be. At over two hours, the bloat is obvious, featuring go-nowhere elements like cops that shake down a small Mexican restaurant and the never-ending  saga of McCall’s kindly, obese coworker becoming a security guard that should have been left in the editing software’s recycle bin. Heavy-handed allegories to “The Old Man and the Sea” and “Don Quioxte” land with an audible thud, doing nothing except standing in the way of Washington— ever noble even when savagely murdering people — getting to the ass-kicking we all came to see. The outcome never remains in doubt, of course, but it would have been nice to have gotten there in a quicker, no-nonsense fashion.

Kick-Ass 2

August 16, 2013 by  
Filed under Jerrod, Reviews

Starring:  Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloë Grace Moretz, Jim Carrey
Directed by: Jeff Wadlow (“Never Back Down”)
Written by: Jeff Wadlow (debut)

As a somewhat tongue-in-cheek, extremely violent and profane send-up of the superhero genre still thriving at the box office, 2010’s “Kick-Ass” asked the question: what if normal people decided to be comic book-style heroes? The answer was a decent-enough adventure punctuated by the memorable father-daughter crime fighting duo of Big Daddy (Nicholas Cage, even more unhinged that normal) and Hit Girl (Chloë Grace Moretz, the most foul-mouthed 11-year-old ever). As a comic book movie with a sizeable-enough take at the box office, the release of “Kick-Ass 2” was a foregone conclusion.

Picking up several years after the first film, “Kick-Ass 2” finds Dave Lizewski (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Mindy Macready (Moretz, not the late country singer) training together to turn Kick-Ass and Hit Girl into a dynamic duo set on cleaning up the streets. After an encounter with some thugs turns bloody, though, Mindy’s guardian Marcus (Morris Chestnut) insists she retire from the superhero business. With his would-be partner forced into the life of a normal high school freshman, Dave joins up with a group of vigilantes inspired by Kick-Ass, calling themselves Justice Forever. Led by Colonel Stars and Stripes (Jim Carrey), the team looks to put an end to crime in the city. Little do they know, though, that the former superhero Red Mist, Chris D’Amico (Christopher Mintz-Plasse doing that same old Christopher Mintz-Plasse thing), has warped himself into the world’s first supervillan. He’s assembled a team of hired thugs to do two things: burn the city to the ground and destroy Kick-Ass.

While the first film often strained to prove how edgy and subversive it was, “Kick-Ass 2” feels more comfortable positioning itself as a straight-up comic book adventure, which turns out to be the most ho-hum part of the script. Taylor-Johnson’s Kick-Ass comes across as a more-boring Peter Parker, and Mintz-Plasse’s villain, the Mother-Fucker, is yet another delusional, power-hungry nerd role in a career full of them. To the film’s benefit, though, Moretz’s Mindy/Hit Girl gets the meatiest part. A second-act riff on “Mean Girls” is ripe enough for its own movie, hilariously highlighted by a scene featuring a prototypical boy band setting off an adolescent fire deep inside the street-tough Mindy. That plot line, along with a fun turn from Jim Carrey, unfortunately comes to an end too soon as the movie decides to get back to its clash between crowds of non-super powered good and evil people in ridiculous costumes fighting in a warehouse. But I’d much rather watch “Hit Girl Goes to High School.”