Film Review: The Way, Way Back — 3.5 stars

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qoaVUdbWMs

TWO WORD REVIEW: Growing Up

SUMMARY: Duncan is a 3 on a scale of 1 to 10. At least that’s what his Mom’s new boyfriend thinks, but that’s before Duncan spends the summer discovering who he really is.

DETAILS: Duncan’s Mom has a new boyfriend (Steve Carell) who owns a house at the beach and Duncan (Liam James) will unwillingly spend the summer there… and in the process he will become himself. The beach community is “like Spring Break for adults” where the parents party every night and Duncan and his neighbor Susanna (AnnaSophia Robb) are left to while the summer away. Soon Duncan sneaks off to Water Wizz, the local water park where he finds purpose and a father figure (Sam Rockwell) who cares for him and helps him realize he has value and self-worth. The Way, Way Back is a fun, funny, and painful reminder of those awkward years transitioning from childhood to adulthood. The film has a great vibe and the cast does a fantastic job telling this story of a boy coming of age.

WATCH THE TRAILER
SCORE: 3.5 out of 5
RELEASE: 2013
RATING: PG-13

Film Review: The Grand Budapest Hotel — 4.5 stars

ONE WORD REVIEW: Stylized

SUMMARY: A hotel concierge is accused of murdering one of his wealthiest guests in this highly-stylized, fun-filled comedy.

DETAILS: Gustave H. (Ralph Fiennes) is the loved and respected concierge of the Grand Budapest Hotel at the height of the hotel’s fame in the 1930’s. His guests all love him, especially the wealthy, old, blond woman whom he cares for, flatters, and often sleeps with. But when one of the wealthiest ends up murdered, the fingers are pointed at Gustav. He and his Lobby Boy, Zero (Anthony Quinonez) soon are on the run from the family and their hired hit man in a chase that takes them from a prison break to the highest slopes of Europe in this highly-stylized, artfully-directed, comedy that hopefully will find room on it’s shelf for an Oscar or two.

 

SCORE: 4.5 out of 5

RELEASE: 2014
RATING: R

Elf — 2 out of 5 stars

ONE WORD REVIEW: Ho-Ho-Hum

SUMMARY: Raised by Santa’s Elves, Buddy the Elf learns he’s a human and sets out to meet the father he’s never known. Pseudo-hilarity ensues.

DETAILS: Will Ferrell plays Buddy the Elf who was raised among elves in Santa’s Workshop at the North Pole. But the day comes when Buddy learns he’s a human and that his real father lives in New York City. So Buddy leaves on a journey to meet the man he’s never known. He gets a job in a department store’s Christmas department, falls in love with a co-worker, and destroys his dad’s career, but along the way he helps restore the Christmas spirit that’s long been lost. A Christmas comedy it is, but it’s funny moments are only so funny, and in the end, Elf just can’t compete with the Mother of all Christmas Comedy’s… A Christmas Story.

SCORE: 2 out of 5

RELEASE: 2003
RATING: PG
COMEDY

Duplex — 2.5 out of 5 stars

Ben Stiller & Drew Barrymore move into a Brooklyn duplex with a noisy, crazy, but charming upstairs neighbor who they can’t get to leave. They soon realize that their only option is murder.
SCORE: 2.5 out of 5

RELEASE: 2003
RATING: PG-13