Mimic 2 (2001)

logoDirector: Jean De Segonzac

Writer: Joel Soisson (Screenplay) Donald A Wollheim (Short Story)

Starring: Alix Koromzay, Bruno Campos, Will Estes, Gaven E Lucas, Edward Albert, Jon Poilto, Jody Wood, Jim O’Heir

 

Plot: When a cockroach-spread plague threatened to decimate the child population of New York City in the original Mimic, biologist Susan Tyler and her research associates developed a crossbreed species of insect, the “Judas Breed” and introduced them into the environment, where they were to spread a toxin, lethal to the cockroaches. The plan worked until the bugs evolved to mimic their next prey…..humans! Just when they were all thought to be dead, the giant Judas bugs are back, and this time they’ve mutated to take on human form!

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: DVD Standard Sequel

 

Story: Mimic 2 starts with a bang when new deadlier creature attacks a man causing an accident. Detective Klaski (Campos) gets filled in on the information at the scene. The man who is on the run is carrying suitcases of dirt. Next we meet elementary school teacher Remi (Koromzay) who is teaching her students about bugs and just so happens to be the assistant to Susan Tyler from the first Mimic film.

We see how Remi is having a terrible time finding love and attracts all the wrong type of guys but has nightmares about a mysterious creature following her. She receives a visit from Detective Klaski who for some reason lurks in the dark before the meeting her as he tries to figure out what happened to the man on the run from the start. Exiting from the meeting the body of one of the recent dates falls literally into the lap of Klaski with the body having the same marks left on the first victim.

The army turn up to investigate interrupting Klaski’s investigation while Remi gets stuck inside the school with student Sal (Lucas) and former student Nicky (Estes). They find themselves trapped but the creature who has boarded up all the entrances. Armed with what they can get their hands on and a camera Remi has to try and make it out of the school with the two boys before the creature finds them.

Mimic 2 really does use the ideas created in the first film well by building upon them to reach the next level. We see how the evolution has continued and by bringing back a supporting character to become the lead we already have a built character knowing what she is dealing with. These ideas help with what is funny enough a more memorable story than the first one, because when anyone asks me about ‘Mimic’ I always think so the scene in the school. The film doesn’t try to be too clever and shows the next step the creatures would be taking to become part of the world. As for sequels it does seem to honour the first one nicely and remain true to the material created. (7/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Alix Koromzay: Remi Panos teacher and former member of the CDC who worked on the Judas Breed who has become the latest interest for the creature, she must keep two students safe when the creature targets them inside the school. Alix does a good job stepping up into the lead role because he character feels more everyday. (7/10)

 

Bruno Campos: Det. Klaski the man investigate a couple of murders that points towards Remi, he has to team up with her to defeat the creature. Bruno does a solid job in the supporting role. (6/10)

 

Support Cast: Mimic 2 has a supporting cast that doesn’t add too much to the overall storyline we get the two students but most others only turn up in a scene or two.

 

Director Review: Jean De Segonzac – Jean gives us a solid sequel but never really tests us to the levels the first one did with character development. (5/10)

 

Horror: Mimic 2 uses the same ideas for horror making us wonder what could be hiding in the shadows. (7/10)

Sci-Fi: Mimic 2 continues to show the effects of trying to play God have had on the world. (7/10)

Thriller: Mimic 2 doesn’t keep you as close to the edge of your seat as the first one does but does keep your attention throughout. (7/10)

Settings: Mimic 2 creates isolation but on the surface when the characters get trapped in the school. (9/10)
Special Effects
: Mimic 2 still struggles with the effects as you can see the CGI every single time. (3/10)

Suggestion: Mimic 2 is one to be trying if you enjoyed the first one you should enjoy this but if you didn’t like the first one don’t bother. (Fans of the First Watch)

 

Best Part: Continuing the idea.

Worst Part: Foreshadowing in Klaski character.

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: 1 more to go.

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $10 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 22 Minutes

Tagline: Nothing will stop them

 

Overall: Mimic 2 is a solid follow up to an already good film but it does lose out on story telling because this time we only follow one person.

Rating 60

Movie Reviews 101 Midnight Horror – Byzantium (2012)

logoDirector: Neil Jordan

Writer: Moira Buffini (Screenplay) Moira Buffini (Play)

Starring: Saoirse Ronan, Gemma Arterton, Sam Riley, Jonny Lee Miller, Daniel Mays, Thure Lindhardt, Caleb Landry Jones

 

Plot: Residents of a coastal town learn, with deathly consequences, the secret shared by the two mysterious women who have sought shelter at a local resort.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Interview With a Vampire: Homework Edition

 

Story: Byzantium starts by Eleanor (Ronan) talking about how she can’t tell her story even though she spends time writing it over and over. Eleanor tells an elder gentleman the story about how she met Clara (Arterton) and that they are living together but Werner (Lindhardt) is hunting them down. As we continue through introduction we see how both kill their victims but have to leave because of the mess left behind.

New town and same problems Clara enters into the prostitution to try and make ends meet while Eleanor uses the desire to learn about people to help her express herself. After Clara meets Noel (Mays) the girls move into his bed and breakfast called Byzantium where he lets the girls stay. We learn about the code the girls follow to stay safe but Eleanor is desperate to tell people the truth.

We flashback to what happened to Clara 200 years ago we also learn the Eleanor is her daughter that she did in fact give up and we learn about how Ruthven (Miller) put Clara in the life she has now. When Eleanor makes friends with Frank (Jones) she starts to feel like she could open up to someone while we continue to Eleanor pick her victims who are on deaths door. Clara turns the bed and breakfast into a brothel knowing she can make plenty of money from it.

After Eleanor tells her story in the modern day we learn the conclusion of the original story of how the girls become vampires and why they have both been on the run. The past is about to catch up with them but can they out run it this time or will their time finally be up.

Byzantium really does feel like a modern take on the ‘Interview with a Vampire’ idea but puts it into a lost story that is in need of telling. It follows very similar ideas of being forced into the vampire life and also has one character who doesn’t want the story told. It all comes off very nicely and does make for a very solid addition to the vampire genre of films and could easily be enjoyed by the fans of those films too. It won’t go down heavy on blood which certain fans will expect in the vampire genre but it tells a better story of surviving with the curse. (7/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Saoirse Ronan: Eleanor permanent 16 year old who craves the connection of other people and just wants to be able to tell her story to but when she meets a young man she could finally have found someone she could have forever. Saoirse does a good job in the role that showed her continues playing the teenage is good for here. (7/10)

 sairose

Gemma Arterton: Clara mother of Eleanor who works as many different things over the years to make ends meet, mostly prostitution but anything to protect them both from the people who are after them. Gemma does a good job here filling the role of determined minder over the long time span. (7/10)

gemma

Jonny Lee Miller: Ruthven the man who put Clara in the situation she finds herself in taking her from quiet job into prostitution leading her to enter into the world they are in now. Jonny does solid job as the original person that leaves them where they are. (6/10)

 

Caleb Landry Jones: Frank the boy that ends up helping Eleanor open up about her story but ends up putting himself into a situation where he will be in the middle of the war between the girls and the brotherhood who hunt them down. Caleb does a good job in this role that opens up a potential romantic angle. (7/10)

 

Support Cast: Byzantium has a support cast that tries to help the characters but also has people who are after them, they all mix nicely to make us want to see how it ends.

 

Director Review: Neil Jordan – Neil does a good job directing this modern day vampire classic. (7/10)

 

Horror: Byzantium has vampires but really isn’t much of a true horror films. (4/10)

Thriller: Byzantium does keep you guessing as you know that people are after them you just for to wait and see who. (8/10)

Settings: Byzantium uses the settings very nicely and even shows how the characters have been put into familiar location from the past. (8/10)

Suggestion: Byzantium is one to try I don’t think many casual fans will enjoy it but I do think it will appeal to fans of the vampire sub-genre. (Try It)

 

Best Part: The final twist is nice.

Worst Part: Does have slow spells.

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Similar Too: Interview with a Vampire

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $8 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 58 Minutes

 

Overall: This is a film that could end up going down as a favourite of some but it is too similar to Interview for my liking.

Rating 70

Genre Grandeur – The Iron Giant (1999) – Movie Reviews 101

Originally posted on :

gg may 2015

For this month’s next review for Genre Grandeur – Animated Sci-Fi/Fantasy (Non-Disney/PIXAR) Movies, here’s a review of The Iron Giant (1999) by Darren of Movie Reviews 101

Thanks again to S.G. Liput of Rhyme and Reason for choosing this month’s genre.

Next month’s Genre has been chosen by Kim of Tranquil Dreams.  We will be reviewing our favorite teenage/high school romance movies. Please get me your submissions by 25th June by sending them to teens@movierob.net  Try to think out of the box! Great choice Kim!

Let’s see what Darren thought of this movie:

__________________________

iron

Director: Brad Bird

Writer: Tim McCanlies (Screenplay) Brad Bird (Screen Story) Ted Hughes (Book)

Starring: (Voice Talents) Jennifer Aniston, Harry Connick Jr, Vin Diesel, James Gammon, Cloris Leachman, Christopher McDonald, John Mahoney, Eli Marienthal

 

Plot: In a small town in America…

View original 506 more words

Mimic (1997)

logoDirector: Guillermo del Toro

Writer: Matthew Robbins, Guillermo del Toro (Screenplay) Donald A Wollheim (Short Story)

Starring: Mira Sorvino, Jeremy Northam, Alexander Goodwin,, Giancarlo Giannini, Charles S Dutton, Josh Brolin, Alix Koromzay, F Murray Abraham

 

Plot: Three years ago, entomologist Dr. Susan Tyler genetically created an insect to kill cockroaches carrying a virulent disease. Now, the insects are out to destroy their only predator, mankind.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Creature Feature Class Act

 

Story: Mimic starts by showing a devastating disease running through New York Doctor Susan Tyler (Sorvino) gets bought into solve the problem by Doctor Peter Mann (Northam). Susan finds a cure by introducing the Judas breed of cockroach to eliminate the threat and succeeding by taking out the carrier.

Three years have pasted and not a single case has been recorded. Next we see a priest running for his life from a mysterious creature before falling to his death. We see Chuy (Goodwin) an autistic witnessing the attack. When Josh (Brolin) gets called to a new case we at the very same location it appears a new disease could be hitting New York, bring in Dr Mann to investigate. Dr Tyler gets a visit the same day by a couple of kids looking for some cash when they bring her bugs and one of these bugs they have found is one of her Judas breeds. That very same night the creature visits Susan and takes the Judas breed.

The next day Tyler and Mann investigate where the kids find the bugs before getting kicked out by Officer Leonard (Dutton). We know that the creature is lurking and hunting, we it make quick kills of anything that threatens its safety. Returning to the subway system with the permit Peter, Josh and Leonard start looking into what could be in the sewers now. We see Susan’ co-worker Remi (Koromzay) locates remains of a dead Judas breed that is bigger than anyone thought possible. We also watch Manny (Giannini) search for his son Chuy after he goes in search for funny shoes as he calls it.

Peter, Susan, Leonard and Manny find themselves trapped inside the home of the Judas breed and have to find a way out before it is too late and the creatures escape to the surface.team

Mimic tells the story of playing God can have side effects especially if you were to rush the results. We get the whole evolution sped up idea which works nicely because we can end up with a creature that could look like anything. I do think everything comes together nicely on here because the film isn’t afraid to make children the victims which adds to the deadliness of the creatures. I also think managing three stories to meet at the end helps the story not get bogged down following just one hero instead it gives us 4 separate ones. When it comes to this genre this is one of the better films and follows everything that needs to happen. (8/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Mira Sorvino: Dr Susan Tyler a bug expert who cures a disease problem only for three years to pass where the creatures she created have evolved into human size killing machines. Mira does a solid job in the lead role but doesn’t shine as much as the film requires her too. (6/10)

 susan

Jeremy Northam: Dr Peter Man CDC member who bought in Susan to solve the problem and over the time the two get married, but he gets the call to try solve the latest disease outbreak. Peter investigates only to find the Judas cockroach has continued to evolve in the subway system and has to find a way to stop it. Jeremy proves to be a good choice in the role as we get the character who is clearly out his depths here. (7/10)

 

Giancarlo Giannini: Manny subway shoe waxier whose autistic son investigates the creature going missing in the process, leading to him getting lost in the subway searching for his son and fighting for his life. Giancarlo does a solid job in the supporting role, playing the everyday hard worker who gets caught up protecting his son. (6/10)

 

Charles S Dutton: Leonard security guard at the subway who ends up being the guide to the underground but he reaction against the idea of the human size cockroaches provides the best of all of the people in the film. Charles becomes the most normal character in a situation where there are giant cockroaches shouting and shooting first. (7/10)

leonard

Support Cast: Mimic has a supporting cast that gives out information as well as a few becoming the victims of the creatures. Each member helps drive our main characters motives.

 

Director Review: Guillermo del Toro – Guillermo is known for disowning this film and while it isn’t on the same level as his numerous classics it still ends up coming off solid for the genre. (6/10)

 

Horror: Mimic ticks all the boxes for a creature feature horror film. (9/10)

Sci-Fi: Mimic shows what happens when you play with genetics without studying the true results. (9/10)

Settings: Mimic uses the subways and sewers are the main settings for anything involving the creature showing just how much could be going on underneath a city. (9/10)
Special Effects
: Mimic has special effects that have started to date now because we can tell the CGI is there with the creatures. (4/10)

Suggestion: Mimic is one for all the creature feature fans to watch as well as most horror fans will enjoy this one. (Horror Fans Watch)

 

Best Part: The fact no one is safe, too many films overprotect to hide horror.

Worst Part: CGI looks bad now.

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Has 2 sequels.

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $25.5 Million

Budget: $25 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

Tagline: A Bold Experiment. A Deadly Mistake!

 

Overall: Mimic is a film that really isn’t afraid to pack a punch when it comes to victims but ends up becoming a foreshadowing to Godzilla (1998).

Rating 70

 

New Releases – 29th May 2015

San Andreassan andreas In the aftermath of a massive earthquake in California, a rescue-chopper pilot makes a dangerous journey across the state in order to rescue his estranged daughter.

My Guess for Rating – 80%
My Anticipation Rating – 95%
Will It Be Number One In UK? – Yes

Danny Collins danny collins An aging rock star decides to change his life when he discovers a 40-year-old letter written to him by John Lennon.

My Guess for Rating – 60%
My Anticipation Rating – 30%
Will It Be Number One In UK? – No

Movie Reviews 101 Pick of the Week – San Andreas

Trailer Alert – Pawn Sacrifice

Plot – American chess champion Bobby Fischer prepares for a legendary match-up against Russian Boris Spassky.

Release Date: No Date set for UK

Stars: Tobey Maguire, Liev Schreiber, Peter Sarsgaard, Lily Rabe

Summary: A film about Chess really doesn’t sound appealing but somehow the added historical look at the tension between the US and Soviet Union really makes this sound interesting. I personally don’t know the story and think this should be something worth watching but let’s just hope they make the right moves.

Questions:

Will I Be Watching? Yes

Will You Be Watching?

My Anticipation Rating – 70%

My Guess Rating – 75%

Will It Be Number One In UK? – No

Top 5 Natural Disaster Films

San Andreas looks like it will be the biggest disaster film of the year, so I decided to look at my favourite natural disaster films. I decided to leave out 2012 because it goes too far for me into the mental adventure film but I really do enjoy it all. Nearly all my films have come from between a 6 years period too.

5. The Core (2003)the core

When the Earth is starting to stop rotating we follow a group of scientist who have to travel into the Earth to restart the rotation before time runs out. We have an all-star cast of Aaron Eckhart, Hillary Swank and Stanley Tucci too.

4. Volcano (1997)volcano

I do feel like Volcano is the least popular on the list here but after a while it does become very interesting the more you watch it. I feel this one is arguable the most sudden because it feels like a normal day and we actually have to see normal people deal with the situation.  This film also has big names involved with the legendary Tommy Lee Jones, Don Cheadle and Anne Heche.

3. The Day After Tomorrow (2004)day after

The dreaded climate change has happened bring around a new ice age that will make the North Hemisphere going to be have mega numbers of casualties. This wasn’t one of my favourites first time around but now I do enjoy watching it. The film also has big names in with Jake Gyllenhaal and Dennis Quaid.

2. Dante’s Peak (1997)dante

Yes, another volcano based film here this time a small town in the shadow of a dormant volcano faces the reality that the volcano is about to erupt cause their peaceful lives to change forever. I have picked this one because of the survival side of the story and it is James Bond versus the Volcano. Two more big names here Pierce Brosnan and Linda Hamilton.

1. Armageddon (1998)arm

Armageddon will always go down as one of my all-time favourite films because the pure emotion thrown into the tragic disaster stories. We have brilliant action scenes, over the top action and comic moments throughout. It also has the odd couple feeling with the idea that one team is just oil drillers and the other is actually astronauts.

Drop Zone (1994)

logoDirector: John Badham

Writer: Peter Barsocchini, John Bishop (Screenplay) Tony Griffin, Guy Manos, Peter Barsocchini (Story)

Starring: Wesley Snipes, Gary Busey, Yancy Butler, Michael Jeter, Corn Nemec, Kyle Secor, Luca Bercovici, Malcolm-Jamal Warner

 

Plot: A tough cop teams up with a professional skydiver to capture a renegade computer hacker on the run from the law.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: High Flying Pulse Pounding Adrenaline Filled Action

 

Story: Drop Zone starts with a prison fight before meeting Pete Nessip (Snipes) and his brother and partner Terry (Warner) heading to meet a prisoner. The brothers both US Marshalls have to transport a prisoner Earl Leedy (Jeter) a man who is going to testify against a gangster. What seems like an easy job takes a turn for the worse when the plane gets hijacked by a group led by Ty Moncrief (Busey) who takes the prisoner hostage before killing Terry and escaping mid-flight.

The authorities believe the case to be closed and seem to be blaming Terry more than the terrorist. We see that the hijackers have got away with Leedy and have a plan, we also watch how Pete is trying to get to the bottom of the incident which cost his brother’s life. Pete’s investigation leads him to find skydiver Jessie (Butler) who teaches him about the art of skydiving and whether it could have been possible. It isn’t long before Pete starts putting the pieces together and has to team up with Jessie to get undercover with the skydivers and solve the case.

Drop Zone manages to complete the idea of action with over the top action with a wildly outrageous concept of skydiving criminals. This follows in the footsteps of having surfers. The story continues to give us the determined cop trying to prove himself after being wrongfully shamed by the force. Everything does pan out nicely keeping everything at a steady pace throughout and is what a lot of action films are, relaction where you can just enjoy. (7/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Wesley Snipes: Pete Nessip is a US Marshal who witnesses his brother die on the job leading him to investigate what could have happened before going undercover with skydivers to find the people responsible. Wesley does a good job in this role where he does get to show vulnerable side during the skydiver and not just being a tough cop. (7/10)

 

Gary Busey: Ty Moncrief is the mastermind behind the hijacking who has plans for Leedy that will make him a very dangerous man as he will kill anyone who gets in the way of his team. Gary always makes a good villain and we always see his character’s mind ticking through this film. (7/10)

 

Yancy Butler: Jessie Crossman is a world class skydiver who teaches Pete the ways while helping him with his investigation. Yancy makes for a tough partner in solving the crime and gets extra laughs by knowing more than Pete. (7/10)

 

Michael Jeter: Earl Leedy is the computer expert who is being transported but ends up being kidnapped into helping the criminals. Michael makes for a good computer hacker having the look down well as well as pulling off the reluctant part of the film. (7/10)

 

Support Cast: Drop Zone has a larger supporting cast that includes the villain team who all have their own motives, we also have the good guys working with Pete to solve the crime all while they have to have skydiving.

 

Director Review: John Badham – John does a good job turning what would be a regular action film into something much bigger with the added skydiving side to it. (7/10)

 

Action: Drop Zone has plenty of action moments mostly involving skydiving. (8/10)

Thriller: Drop Zone does keep things on the edge of your seat as you watch the skydiving you are left wanting to see who makes it. (8/10)

Settings: Drop Zone uses the settings well with most being in the sky though, but it does help the film. (8/10)

Suggestion: Drop Zone is one for all the action fans out there to enjoy. (Action Fans Watch)

 

Best Part: Skydiving scenes are all good.

Worst Part: You know what will happen.

Action Scene Of The Film: Skydiving.

Funniest Scene: Pete gets dropped from the plane by Jessie.

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Similar Too: Point Break

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $29 Million

Budget: $45 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 41 Minutes

Tagline: Something Dangerous Is In The Air

 

Overall: Drop Zone is a fun filled action film that will keep your blood flowing throughout.

Rating 71

Star Leaf Information

Sci-Fi Marijuana Thriller “Star Leaf” Lands in Seattle June 6th

The Northwest Leaf Sponsors World Premiere of Pot Movie with a Message

May 18, 2015, Seattle, WA — Titan Sky Entertainment’s Star Leaf will screen for the first time in front of an audience on Saturday, June 6, at Evergreen Bud and Glass, 1956 1st Ave S, Seattle, WA  98134. The event is free, but is restricted to audiences 21 and over, and reservations are recommended (https://www.facebook.com/events/1440092846291629/).

The “green” carpet begins at 7:00, with stars Tyler Trerise (Fat Kid Rules the World), and Richard Cranor (GodMachine) on hand, along with local cast and crew; sponsor Wes Abney of The Northwest Leaf magazine; representatives from Bainbridge Island-based Ohana Farms; and Leomark Studios, the film’s distributor. The movie will screen at 8:00.

           ogo Star Leaf is a sci-fi thriller about an extra-terrestrial form of marijuana discovered in the Olympic forests of Washington State. The main character, played by Z-Nation’s Julian Gavilanes, is a veteran of the Afghanistan war, and the film has PTSD and its treatment with cannabis as an underlying theme. Shot entirely on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, the movie features actual “Star Leaf” marijuana plants developed by Ohana Farms to help in PTSD treatment. The movie and strain have received the support of Analytical 360, Washington’s first I-502-certified testing lab.RICHARDCRANOR

Writer/Director Richard Cranor was inspired to make the film by his Iraq-veteran brother’s experiences with PTSD, as well as Cranor’s own recent bout with cancer. “What I learned going through cancer and my brother’s PTSD experiences is that we definitely need cannabis as an option for treatments. I strongly oppose anyone or any institution that limits people’s right to treat themselves, especially when you’re dealing with issues like cancer and PTSD. That’s really key in my personal belief system,” says Cranor. “For PTSD, cannabis allows people to bypass the conscious mind and get to the root of a lot of those painful memories faster than traditional therapy…. For me it’s not necessarily about the plant specifically, so much as the right for humans to be in charge of their own sovereignty; and plants like marijuana shouldn’t be vilified for doing nothing more than being a natural, healthy addition to our lives.”

Despite its sober message, “Star Leaf is first and foremost a wild, entertaining ride,” says executive producer Robert Leeshock (Earth: Final Conflict). Leeshock and Cranor are working with co-producer/distributor Leomark Studios on a novel distribution strategy: exclusive pre-release in MMJ and RMJ dispensaries and through the film’s own website for 3 months, followed by a wider release in fall 2015 on VOD/DVD.

For information on future screenings and where to get the Star Leaf DVD, visit http://www.starleafmovie.com/Topics/online-store/.

For distribution information, including becoming a DVD reseller, contact Leomark Studios at info@leomarkstudios.com.

Ohana Farms: http://www.ohanaedu.org

Star Leaf Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/starleafmovie

Star Leaf Twitter: https://twitter.com/StarLeafMovie #StarLeafMovie

Titan Sky Entertainment: http://www.titanskyentertainment.com

Leomark Studios: http://leomarkstudios.com

Northwest Leaf Magazine: http://www.thenorthwestleaf.com

Evergreen Bud & Glass: http://www.evergreenbudandglass.com

American Heist (2015)

logoDirector: Sarik Andreasyan

Writer: Raul Inglis (Screenplay)

Starring: Jordana Brewster, Hayden Christensen, Adrien Brody, Laura Cayouette, Aaron V Williamson, Tory Kittles, Divine Prince Ty Emmecca, Akon

 

Plot: James owes his life to his older brother, Frankie after taking the rap for a crime they committed together. While Frankie served time, James worked to turn his life around, got a steady job and began courting his former girlfriend Emily. Now, Frankie is released and back on the streets with no money and no place to go.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Gritty Emotional Heist Film

 

Story: American Heist starts with James (Christensen) waiting before starting to look for someone then an explosion surprises him bring us back a day in time where we follow James going about his everyday life. James has a brother Frankie (Brody) fresh out of prison being picked up by his criminal connection Sugar (Akon) who keeps him happy with drinks, drugs and girls on his first night out before meeting the boss Ray (Kittles).

James has turned his life around where he now works on the straight life working as a mechanic, he sees an old flame Emily (Brewster) back in town where James sees his life moving in the right direction. Frankie turns up to see his brother’s life after ten years locked away. Frankie arranges to meet for drinks with James which leads to him discussion a new job opportunity which leads us back to the opening scene where James gets tricked into a job as Frankie is trying to repay his debts.

Ray has assembled a team to pull off an elaborate bank robbery which will finally see Frankie pay back the debts he owes because James has the skills to get part of the plan done.

American Heist is a story that does seem to follow the traditional idea of a recently released from prison criminal goes straight back into the criminal world even if it isn’t fully his desire. We also see how the man thinking he has escaped from the criminal world gets dragged back in for one more job. This side of the story has been done before but is does really push the two brothers on an emotional level. When it comes to the actual heist it does become the secondary story behind the brothers relationship with the preparation being a quick flash scene and like most heist films go completely wrong. The story will have to go down as a solid entry into the genre but won’t be a film climbing into anyone’s best. (7/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Hayden Christensen: James is the former criminal who has turned his life around with a clean cut job where he is trying to get his own business, his life may not be perfect but he is happy that everything is all legal now. When his brothers released from prison he ends up caught up trying to pay off Frankie’s debts forced into working for criminal Ray. Hayden continues to try and recover from the criticism he got for Star Wars with another anti pretty boy film where he tries to play tough but doesn’t quite pull it off. (6/10)

james

Adrien Brody: Frankie is James’ brother who fresh out of prisoner does straight back into his criminal underworld where criminal boss Ray wants both Frankie and James to work for him. Frankie went through a lot in prison and always stood up for his brothers, as well as helping him become the man he is now. Adrien gives a performance you would expect from an Oscar winner, he does show his skills but sometimes feels like he is overacting to the situations. (7/10)

 frankie

Jordana Brewster: Emily is the old flame who comes back into James’ life. Emily just so happens to be a dispatch caller for the police which could make the bank job all that much harder as Emily and James start rekindling their romance. Jordana does a good job but really doesn’t get enough screen time for the romantic angle in the story. (6/10)

 

Akon: Sugar is the second in command to Ray who gets the dirty jobs done when other people won’t get involved. Akon does make a good supporting actor never trying to over act like many musicians do when they enter the acting world. (7/10)

 

Tory Kittles: Ray is the criminal who helped Frankie in prison leaving him being owed a favour from Frankie when he finally gets out. Ray makes Frankie bring James back into the criminal world to take part in an elaborate heist. Tory makes for a good emotionless tough criminal who believes in every word he is saying. (7/10)

 

Support Cast: American Heist doesn’t really have many more characters involved in the story, we have the generic characters trying to chase down the criminals and the members of the group trying to pull off the heist.

 

Director Review: Sarik Andreasyan – Sarik gives us a solid heist film that really does focus on the relationship between the two brothers who have gone down different paths but must work together one last time. (7/10)

 

Action: American Heist keeps the action in a realistic level apart from one moment, making each feel like it could be a real heist and aftermath. (7/10)

Drama: American Heist creates a dysfunctional relationship between the two brothers which helps show just how far they would go for each other. (7/10)

Settings: American Heist keeps the settings in location where you would imagine the characters would want to turn to crime to end all the suffering they are going through. (8/10)

Suggestion: American Heist is one to try, I do think if you are a fan of the genre you will enjoy but there is only so much you can do with a heist film without fully copying anything else. (Try It)

 

Best Part: I really liked how the film ended, but can’t give it away.

Worst Part: How James gets pulled into the criminal world again.

Action Scene Of The Film: Ray’s escape attempt.

 

Believability: The heist feels like it could be how a real one would end, but the relationship side mixed with the heist not so. (4/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Similar Too: Kill Point (TV Show)

 

Oscar Chances: None

Budget: $10 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 34 Minutes

 

Overall: American Heist will go down as an emotionally gritty heist film about two brothers.

Rating 70