ABC Film Challenge – Romance – B – The Bounty Hunter (2010)

Director: Andy Tennant

Writer: Sarah Thorp (Screenplay)

Starring: Gerald Butler, Jennifer Aniston, Gio Perez, Joel Marsh Garland, Jason Kolotouros, Matt Malloy, Jason Sudeikis, Adam Rose

 

Plot: A bounty hunter learns that his next target is his ex-wife, a reporter working on a murder cover-up. Soon after their reunion, the always-at-odds duo find themselves on a run-for-their-lives adventure.


Tagline – It’s a Job. It Isn’t Personal. Well, Maybe a Little 

Runtime: 1 Hour 50 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Rom Com 101

 

Story: The Bounty Hunter starts when bounty hunter Milo Boyd (Butler) is in need of money gets given a chance for a new bounty, his ex-wife reporter Nicole (Aniston) who has skipped bail for an assault charge.

Once Milo catches up with Nicole, he goes through the difficult task of getting her across country, while her creepy work colleague Stewart (Sudeikis) tracks them and the story Nicole is investigating has people trying to clean it up before it gets released.

 

Thoughts on The Bounty Hunter

 

Characters – Milo Boyd is an alcoholic bounty hunter and former cop that gets his latest assignment, his ex-wife, his gambling and drinking problems cause problems along the way as the relationship between the two only takes them off guard. Nicole is a reporter that is looking into a suicide that doesn’t add up, she has gotten herself in trouble over an assault charge and by not attending court a bounty is placed on her head, she is determined to uncover the truth in her story even with her ex-husband tracking her down to put her back in jail. Stewart is co-worker that believes he is in a relationship with Nicole sticking his nose where it doesn’t belong. The rest of the characters are the people involved in the case.

PerformancesGerald Butler and Jennifer Aniston were two of the biggest rom com stars at the time of release, they are both good through the film without doing anything great. The supporting cast add the laughs where needed without any of the character being too quirky for the film.

StoryThe story follows an ex-married couple who are thrown together as the husband must bring in the wife who skipped bail to investigate a story for her paper. We get the typical bickering between the couple which gets laughs when needed, we have a side story about what is being investigated which could have been give a lot more spotlight than it gets. We also deal with people trying to track down both of the couple for other reasons and by the end it all ties together to be watchable for the audience. It would be fair to say we have one too many side stories going on and the bickering gets old quickly showing us why they should never be a couple in the first place. we also miss out of learning more about what drove Milo to bounty hunting over his police job which he is clearly very good at.

Action/Comedy/RomanceThe action is a mix of chases and accidental gun fights which is fine we don’t need the action to be too intense in this film. the comedy comes from the romance side of the story which shows us just how difficult the couple can be at times.

SettingsThe film takes place in different American cities, none of them do feel that iconic with most just becoming generic city number one then two etc.


Scene of the Movie –
Strip club.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Too many side stories going on.

Final ThoughtsThis is a watchable rom com, it does the basics well uses the star power well and will entertain without being the best of the year.

 

Overall: Simple and enjoyable.

Rating

 

 

The Book of Love (2016)

Director: Bill Purple

Writer: Robbie Pickering, Bill Purple (Screenplay)

Starring: Jason Sudeikis, Maisie Williams, Jessica Biel, Mary Steenburgen, Orlando Jones

 

Plot: Henry is an introverted architect. After the death of his wife in a car accident, he sets out to help Millie, a homeless teen, to build a raft to sail across the Atlantic.


Tagline – How far would you go for a lost love?

Runtime: 1 Hour 46 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Charming Grief Battle Drama

 

Story: The Book of Love starts when architect Henry Herschel (Sudeikis) loses his pregnant wife Penny (Biel) in a car accident, broken he needs to take time away from work, he notices homeless teenager Millie (Williams) searching for scraps.

When Henry learns what Millie is planning, he decides to jump in and help her with the project to build a raft to sail across the Atlantic, this gives him a new lease for life, to help someone follow their dream.

 

Thoughts on The Book of Love

 

Characters – Henry Herschel is an architect on the verge of a big promotion to partner in the company, and a baby, his life however is turned upside down when his wife is killed in an accident. Filled with grief he meets teenager Millie who he helps with her project, taking his mind off his loss. Millie is a homeless teenager, well she is forced to live with her estranged Uncle and she wants to build a raft like in the journal she finds. She believes she is doing the right thing as she is dealing with own problems. Penny is Henry’s wife who even after her death gives him guiding light to help Millie. Julia is the mother-in-law wanting the best for Henry as her own way of dealing with the loss of her daughter.

PerformancesJason Sudeikis continues to show that he is delightful to watch in these drama-comedy roles, he shows enough grief and hope to make you believe that he has been the one to lose his wife. Maisie Williams is good for the most part, but she does struggle to maintain the accent through the film.  Jessica Biel and Mary Steenburgen both give us good performances in the supporting roles.

StoryThe story follows a grief ridden man that decides to help a teenager with her own problems in an attempt to cure his own problems only to there to help cure her problems. This does have sweet moments as we see how the lives have been turned upside down by their own tragic losses and the moments where they can help support each other, we do however deal with grief in a realistic way, being left empty in need of something to keep us going. The glaring problem is the repeating of the facts about people dying, we just don’t need this on repeat to get the point, as we know the focus on the story is, enjoy life however difficult moments have been.

SettingsThe film is set-in small-town America, well the suburbs, which shows us how life can change in an instant in this world no matter who or where you are.


Scene of the Movie –
Closing shot.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Maisie Williams accent.

Final ThoughtsThis is a charming movie that gets the message across well, we get to see just how grief can be processed by the people suffering from it.

 

Overall: One of the dreamers to see where people can make it.

Rating

 

 

ABC Film Challenge – Romance – D – Drinking Buddies (2013)

Director: Joe Swanberg

Writer: Joe Swanberg (Screenplay)

Starring: Olivia Wilde, Jake Johnson, Anna Kendrick, Ron Livingston, Ti West, Jason Sudeikis

 

Plot: Luke and Kate are coworkers at a brewery who spend their nights drinking and flirting heavily. One weekend away together with their significant others proves who really belongs together and who doesn’t.


Tagline – A comedy about knowing when to say when.

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Comedy Goes on Too Long

 

Story: Drinking Buddies starts as we meet the co-workers from the brewery Kate (Wilde) and Luke (Johnson) who get along in and out of work, they enjoy a drink together, but both have their own relationship, Luke with teacher Jill (Kendrick) and Kate with Chris (Livingston).

The two couple decide to go away for a weekend together where the relationships will be tested and we get to see just who has feelings for who between the four.

 

Thoughts on Drinking Buddies

 

Characters – Kate is the PR woman at the brewery, she hangs out with the guys drinking after work, she is in the early stages of a relationship but doesn’t have much planned from it. Luke is the co-worker that is closest to Kate, he has been in a long-term relationship but avoiding the marriage conversation. Jill is Luke’s partner, a teacher that doesn’t enjoy drinking as much as Luke and wonders what could have been from her life.

PerformancesOlivia Wilde is good in this role, she can play the free spirit that is needed well and work well with Jake Johnson that handles the comic moments well. Anna Kendrick is good as the girlfriend, you believe her in the more serious situation of the film.

StoryThe story focuses on two co-workers that enjoy drinking but have their own relationship, we see how when time goes by the relationships become strained and their own feelings become much clearer, there isn’t too much more in this story, it is trying to show us everyday problems that everyday people might have.

Comedy/RomanceThe comedy comes off well for the most part, with most part being improv that relies on the actor’s abilities.

SettingsThe film keeps us looking in the everyday locations which shows us how lives can change so quickly.


Scene of the Movie –
Drinking on the beach

That Moment That Annoyed Me It does drag in the second half of the film.

Final ThoughtsThis is a comedy that uses the idea of everyday life with relationship both romantic and with co-workers, argument can cause problems, but friends will always find a way to make up.

 

Overall: Simple comedy that isn’t the most inspiring.

Rating

 

 

Kodachrome (2018)

Director: Mark Raso

Writer: Jonathan Tropper (Screenplay) A.G. Sulzberger (Article)

Starring: Elizabeth Olsen, Jason Sudeikis, Ed Harris, Bruce Greenwood, Amanda Brugel, Dennis Haysbert

 

Plot: Set during the final days of the admired photo development system known as Kodachrome, a father and son hit the road in order to reach the Kansas photo lab before it closes its doors for good.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 40 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Brilliant Drama

 

Story: Kodachrome starts as music executive Matt Ryder (Suedikis) is about to lose his job unless he can sign the next big band, even after this he will be looking at the door, his distant father Ben (Harris) is dying and his carer Zoe (Olsen) comes to Matt in hope that he will give his father one final wish, to travel across America to Kansas to go to a photo lab, the last of its kind.

Reluctantly Matt agrees to go on the trip and along the way the two must everything out as we learn about how Matt dislike to his father comes from his own father’s quest for success which never saw him around.

 

Thoughts on Kodachrome

 

Characters – Matt is a music executive, he has been in the industry for years and has always had an ear for talent, his weakness comes from signing the talent. He has a bad relationship with his father since his father wasn’t around during his youth, he goes on a journey with his father in an attempt to build bridges before his father dies, while attempting to save his job. Ben is the father of Matt, he is a world-renowned photographer that has always been using Kodachrome to develop his photos, with the last development lab getting closed down and his health beating him, he wants his son to join him on a cross country trip to make up for his years of errors. Zoe is the carer for Ben, she helps build the first bridge between the two and joins them on the journey, she tries to keep the peace between the two and even offers Matt a new friend who has been on the same dysfunctional paths.

PerformancesJason Sudeikis is a comic actor I have always thought was good in comic roles, but isn’t the one I enjoy his style, for me this is his best performance because he gets to put the odd joke in a serious performance, giving it the grounded level required. Ed Harris is fantastic in his role showing the stubbornness needed but also showing the signs of regret he is feeling. Elizabeth Olsen once again shines in a supporting role in the film.

StoryThe story here follows a father and son that have a distant relationship that must go on a road trip with the father dying of cancer sooner rather than later. The two must put aside the difficulties from the past for a moment of clarity between the two. This story shows that no matter what people have been through they will always be love for family in them, a lesson to be taught and a secret that will keep them strong.

SettingsThe film takes us from New York to Kansas with sights of America along the way, we don’t hit the landmarks, but we get the sense of distant they must travel.


Scene of the Movie –
Parsons the lab.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Who is this band ‘Live’

Final ThoughtsThis is one of the best movies of the year, we get a balance between the reality of what will be happening to Ben and the proof family will always love you right up to the final moment when they can create a moment in someone’s life they will never forget.

 

Overall: Must see drama.

Rating

 

 

Colossal (2017)

Director: Nacho Vigalondo

Writer: Nacho Vigalondo (Screenplay)

Starring: Anne Hathaway, Jason Sudeikis, Austin Stowell, Tom Blake Nelson, Dan Stevens, Hannah Cheeramy

 

Plot: Gloria is an out-of-work party girl forced to leave her life in NY and move back home. When reports surface that a giant creature is destroying Seoul, she gradually comes to the realization that she is somehow connected to this phenomenon.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Very Hard Work

 

Story: Colossal starts as New York party girl Gloria (Hathaway) is kicked out by her out of patience boyfriend Tim (Stevens), forcing her to return to her home town. It doesn’t take her long to meet an old friend in Oscar (Sudeikis) and the regulars from the bar Joel (Stowell) and Garth (Nelson).

Finding herself a job at Oscar’s bar the world starts to come under panic when a giant monster appears in Seoul randomly and continues to appear, after a while Gloria notices a movement the monster makes that is like the nerves tick she has.

When Gloria confirms she is the monster she must figure a way to stop things happening using only her new friends knowing the truth but things take a turn for the worse through the days of trying to control this phenomenon.

 

Thoughts on Colossal

 

Characters/PerformanceGloria is an out of work alcoholic who enjoys the party life, she is forced home to face old memories but soon finds herself dealing with a bigger problem, she is in fact controlling a giant monster terrorising Seoul. This is a good look for a character that has seen life not go the way she wanted it too. Oscar is the old friend in the old town that finds himself going through the same routine going in the direction he never thought his life could go. The rest of the characters are the trademark bar locals and the boyfriend that gives up help Gloria.

Performance wise, Hathaway and Sudeikis are good without being great, I personally feel we could have got a lot more out of other actor in both roles but that is down to the confusing and poorly decide tone for the film.

StoryI want to start this by saying I liked the idea, I think there was loads of potential in this story, but I feel this feel missed out on most of it, only really uses the concept, not using the personal growth needed in the characters and lacking the idea of what a comedy is meant to be.

Action/Comedy/Sci-Fi The action doesn’t happen often and when it does it is easily forgettable, the comedy happens in the early parts of the film but soon gets forgotten that this is a comedy, with the sci-fi side of the film coming in how monsters arrive.

SettingsThe small town setting should be used for the personal growth to go next to the monster side of the film.

Special EffectsThe special effects are all good when needed and are the best part of the film.

Final ThoughtsFor me this film disappoints on many levels, it should be a full comedy but it does turn dark and serious for the 2nd thirds of the film, I feel we can have better written characters and a better selection of story creation.

 

Overall: Disappoint comedy that drags once we forget the comedy side of the film.

Rating