Ben Stiller Weekend – Dodgeball (2004)

Director: Rawson Marshall Thurber

Writer: Rawson Marshall Thurber (Screenplay)

Starring: Vince Vaughn, Christine Taylor, Ben Stiller, Rip Torn, Justin Long, Stephen Root, Joel David Moore, Alan Tudyk, Gary Cole

 

Plot: A group of misfits enter a Las Vegas dodgeball tournament in order to save their cherished local gym from the onslaught of a corporate health fitness chain.


Tagline – Grab Life by the Balls 

Runtime: 1 Hour 32 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: One of the Best Sports Comedies

 

Story: Dodgeball starts as we meet the two gym owners, White Goodman (Stiller) who is obsessed with perfection with bodies only accepting beautiful model like members, on the other side of the street we have Peter La Fleur (Vaughn) owner of Average’s Joe a gym that is open to all, with the regulars and staff including Justin (Long), Gordon (Root), Owen (Moore), Dwight (Williams) and Steve the Pirate (Tudyk).

When Average Joe’s is facing a financial crisis with lawyer Kate Veatch (Taylor) preparing to close them in 30 days with White Goodman wanting to buy it and demolish it. The only plan is to train and enter a dodgeball competition where the prize is the money they require, only problem is, White has made his own team of super-athletes to stop Average Joe’s winning.  

 

Thoughts on Dodgeball

 

Characters – Peter La Fleur is a gym owner, he is laidback and willing to let anybody join at their own pace, this mentality has left him facing financial crisis and he reluctantly accepts entering a dodgeball tournament, he can bring the team together as he gives the whole team hope. White Goodman is the owner of Globo Gym he only accepts beautiful people in his gym even offering cosmetic surgery for his members. He is completely over the top believing he is God’s gift to women with his success coming from his family’s money, he will do anything to eliminate Average Joe’s. Kate Veatch is the lawyer that is assigned to study the finances of Average Joe’s, she becomes the love interest for both men even though she has no interest in White, she joins the team to help eliminate Globo Gym. Patches O’Houlihan is the dodgeball expert, he trains the Average Joe’s to help become competitive in the competition. The rest of the cast include the Average Joe’s members Justin, Gordon, Owen, Dwight and Steve the Pirate that each have their own stories behind their characters to help motivate them to compete.

PerformancesVince Vaughn is one of those actors whose comedy can go either way, it is a laidback style which work perfectly for his character here, because he brings us a real person compared to Ben Stiller. Stiller on the other hand nails his completely over the top character that you are meant to be laughing at with everything he does and says. Christine Taylor is good in her role which like the rest of the cast shine, we get a mix of different comedies from the supporting cast which blend together to show the different styles of real life people.

StoryThe story here follows to rival gyms going to compete for a dodgeball tournament to help keep the little gym with no money a chance to stay afloat before the global franchise closes them down. The story does botte down to a simple underdog story which is fine we can all enjoy a story about an underdog, we do get moments in the film from the Average Joe’s characters that help them learn to become more than they are which is the whole point of a gym, to improve yourself in your own way and everything Globo Gym shouldn’t be. If you want a simple fun sports comedy to watch, this is going to be the one for you without a question.

ComedyThe comedy in this film comes from many different levels, we get moments of slapstick with the dodgeball scenes, we get over the top characters in White Goodman and his team and finally each member of Joe’s team has their own quirky to make them funny.

SettingsThe look at the different gyms helps the settings because it shows how people can be intimidated by certain gyms over others, when we head to Vegas for the tournament the competition feels are authentic as you would imagine.


Scene of the Movie –
Most of the dodgeball scenes.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Lance Armstrong scene is awkward now.

Final ThoughtsFor a sports comedy this has laughs, heart and quality performances from the whole cast, this is one that will stick with you for years to come and I hope to see everyone else enjoy it.

 

Overall: Sports comedy done to near perfection.

Rating

 

 

ABC Film Challenge – Anticipated for 2020 – A

ABC Film Challenge

Anticipated for 2020

A

The year 2029 is coming to a close and it is time to look ahead to the new year, through December the subject is the films I am looking forward to seeing, hopefully I will be able to select one film for each letter even if we dive into actors, directors or themes. Join in if you want and let’s get this conversation going about the next hopefully wonderful year in film.

Army of the Dead

Stars – Dave Bautista, Ana de la Reguera, Ella Purnell, Hiroyuki Sanada

SynopsisFollowing a zombie outbreak in Las Vegas, a group of mercenaries take the ultimate gamble, venturing into the quarantine zone to pull off the greatest heist ever attempted.

Mentally Apart (2019) Movie Review

Director: Joe Pomarico

Writer: Joe Pomarico (Screenplay) Joe Pomarico, Larry Bernardo, Christine James Walker (Story)

Starring: Christine James Walker, Larry Bernardo

Plot: A beatific couple are buried in a dream relationship, but when their love slowly descends into nightmares, strange things begin to happen in their apartment.

Runtime: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Thoughtful, Provoking Horror

Story: Mentally Apart starts when a young couple Luna (Walker) and Chuck (Bernardo) have their first date of a blossoming romance as we see how time continues to fly by in the relationship, leading up to wedding planning.

With Chuck busy writing his own book, he starts to notice strange things happening around the apartment, as it starts to put a strain on the couple relationship, leaving the mystery as to why everything is happening.

Thoughts on Mentally Apart

Characters – Luna is the woman with a past that can only be described as tragic, she sees hope in this new relationship. Chuck is the writer that is seen as a bad boy for Luna, he starts seeing the strange thing around the apartment. While we don’t learn much about the two outside their relationship, the two characters do show the highs and lows of the relationship.

PerformancesChristine James Walker and Larry Bernardo are our only two performers, they are both wonderful to watch, as they both show the chemistry a couple would have, they each get a solo moment or two to shine.

StoryThe story here follows a couple’s relationship as they first get to know each other along with the highs and lows, while not everything is what is seems for the couple. This is a story that will make you want to think about everything you are seeing, while certain parts might just be relationship conversations, be it long-term futures or who will take out trash, there is an uneasy feeling about how things are going, which will make you want to think about things more carefully.

HorrorThe horror in the film comes from certain visions that the characters are going through, they can come out of nowhere, which is a big plus, because at times the drama will make you forget we are in a horror film.

SettingsThe film is a singular location film, where everything takes place in the apartment the two decide to call home.


Scene of the Movie – Let’s dance.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – A couple too many conversations about taking out the trash.

Final Thoughts This is a thought-provoking horror that shows how relationships can become a nightmare people aren’t willing to admit they are in, showing us how important each scene can be in a movie too.

Overall: Horror that Makes You Think.