Trailer Alert – All Summers End

Malin Akerman Weekend – Couples Retreat (2009)

Director: Peter Billingsley

Writer: Jon Favreau, Vince Vaughn, Dana Fox (Screenplay)

Starring: Vince Vaughn, Jason Bateman, Faizon Love, Jon Favreau, Malin Akerman, Kristen Bell, Kristin David, Kali Hawk, Tasha Smith, Jean Reno


Plot: A comedy centered around four couples who settle into a tropical-island resort for a vacation. While one of the couples is there to work on the marriage, the others fail to realize that participation in the resort’s therapy sessions is not optional.

Tagline –  A comedy about a vacation in paradise they’ll never forget

Runtime: 1 Hour 53 Minutes


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Nice Well Casted Comedy


Story: Couples Retreat starts as we meet the four couples at the different stages of their relationships, Dave (Vaughn) & Ronnie (Akerman) who have infant kids, Joey (Favreau) & Lucy (Davis) who are about to see their kid go off to college, leaving them to go their desperate ways, Shane (Love) who has just separated from his wife and dating 20-year-old Trudy (Hawk) and Jason (Bateman) & Cynthia (Bell) who are struggling to conceive and want the support of their friends by going on the tropical retreat.

Once the couples arrive on the island they learn they all must take part in the exercises, which isn’t what they signed up for and we are left to see which couples will make it through under the guidance of Marcel (Reno) and his theories.


Thoughts on Couples Retreat


Characters – We have a lot of characters here, we are going to go through the couples first, Dave is a video game designer who has a young family, married to Ronnie, he is the most reluctant to go because of the age of their kids. Ronnie is similar to Dave, the kids are taking their time, taking away from their free time. Jason & Cynthia are the couple that request the help on the holiday, they want children and are two people that are almost identical with their planning. Joey & Lucy have accepted they are going to separate once their daughter goes to college, they are both looking for options on the island because they have been together since high school. Shane has separated from his wife already, he has fallen into a relationship with a 20-year-old in Trudy as part of his mid-life crisis. Trudy is a youngster of the group always unhappy that Shane can’t keep up with her.

PerformancesWe do have a very good cast here, Vince Vaughn gives us his normal comic idea, which is something I enjoy watching, it goes well opposite Jason Bateman’s slightly uptight style. Jon Favreau is good in his role and the most unknown f the four men is Faizon Love that keeps up with the rest well. The women get to focus on the different stages of life too, the thing is they could all be interchangeable in their roles if we are being honest. Kali Hawk is the stand out of the women performers.

StoryThe story follows four couples at different stages of their relationships, this is important because friends will need to learn from their friend’s positions and see where things could go. While this doesn’t always give each relationship, the time required to show where things are going for the couples, but this unleashes more comical moments in the film. While not overly loved by everyone, I feel this does work for the people that will enjoy a simple comedy movie.

ComedyThis comedy does work in most places, we have couples moments and solo moments which work to keep things flowing.

SettingsMost of the film is on the tropical island which gives us the beautiful backdrop for the events.

Scene of the Movie –
Clashing with employees.

That Moment That Annoyed Me We have the man problems, but we don’t see enough of what the women problems are.

Final ThoughtsThis is an enjoyable comedy that hints more often than it misses and has good cast working towards their strengths.


Overall: Enjoyable throughout.




ABC Film Challenge – Action Movies – Mercury Plains (2016)

Director: Charles Burmeister

Writer: Charles Burmeister (Screenplay)

Starring: Scott Eastwood, Nick Chinlun, Andy Garcia, Jorge A Jimenez, Justin Arnold, Justin Park, Angela Sarafyan


Plot: A troubled man runs away to Mexico and is recruited to join a paramilitary group of teens fighting the drug cartels. He proves himself to the group, but questions their motive.


There may be spoilers the rest of the review


Verdict: Forgettable Actioner


Story: Mercury Plains starts Mitch (Eastwood) a young man from a dead-end town in Texas travels to Mexico with his friend Jesse (Park) they find themselves in trouble, Jesse brings Mitch to meet The Captain (Chinlund) a freedom fighter against the drug market in Mexico.

Upon joining the group Mitch learns not everything is as it seems as the rest of the group seem just like runaways looking for trouble, rather than himself just looking for a fresh start. Mitch slowly becomes the big brother figure to the rest of the boys as he learns this all feels like more of a cult rather than a legal unit.


Thoughts on Mercury Plains


Characters/PerformanceMitch leaves his abusive life with no future behind him to travel to Mexico, he does want to a job and his own life but in Mexico he joins a group that claim to be fighting drug dealers. He is turns into a mentor like character to the younger members of the group as he sees the error of the ways. The Captain leads the boys in this freedom fight but it appears he isn’t as honest as it seems.

Performance wise, this is a film designed to see if Scott Eastwood can be like his father and while he is leaps and bounds above the rest of the cast he is only good in this role.

StoryThe story does have a slow pace about it, we have elements of coming of age for the teenage boys needing to learn life lessons and seeing how Mitch evolves through the story is good to see. The problem here does come with the fact this isn’t the most interesting story and in places does just come off boring at times.

Action/AdventureThe action is very basic through the film, we don’t get much going on through the film, the adventure shows life lesson learned by the people involved.

SettingsWe have the remote settings which helps keep things low budget as the leader can make himself the king in the middle of nowhere showing us the settings working well.

Final ThoughtsThis is a largely forgettable movie that just doesn’t hit the levels it could and just becomes something you won’t care about.


Overall: Skip it, or regret it