Kid Cannabis (2014)

Director: John Stockwell

Writer: John Stockwell (Screenplay)

Starring: Jonathan Daniel Brown, Kenny Wormald, Aaron Yoo, Ron Perlman, John C McGinley, Corey Large, Bryce Hodgson

 

Plot: An eighteen year old high school drop out and his twenty-seven year old friend start trafficking marijuana across the border of Canada in order to make money and their lives are changed forever.


Tagline – Everyone wants to be a kingpin.

Runtime: 1 Hour 50 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Entertaining Story

 

Story: Kid Cannabis starts as we meet high school drop out Nate (Brown) who is telling the story of how he along with his partner Topher (Wormald) become involved in the drug trafficking business. We start at the beginning where Nate learns about the idea that trafficking the drugs across the Canadian border.

We follow Nate who works with Topher and crime boss Barry Lerner (Perlman) to start up the business and just how often the border patrol would pull him over to check whether he is smuggling anything illegal. This was just the beginning of what become a small empire created that changed their lives forever.

 

Thoughts on Kid Cannabis

 

Characters – Nate is a high school dropout working a dead-end job getting high in his free time. He learns about the idea of trafficking across the Canadian border, he uses his intelligence to plan an operation which will see him become an overnight sensation, he does start to get carried away with his new money which sees him needing to fight for his own dominance in the field. Topher is the older friend of Nate’s who can handle the transport with his enjoyment of the wilderness, he can lead the teams across the borders and keep the peace between Nate and the fellow runners. Barry Lerner is the local crime boss that Nate turns to for the investment to the idea, he gives the basic threats and the money rolling in which will keep him happy. John is the farmer in Canada making the product, the best the Americans can get their hands on.

PerformancesJonathan Daniel Brown in the leading role does make for good story teller, he doesn’t look like a drug smuggler which is why it is a more unique story. Kenny Wormald fills the lead runner role well, he makes us believe he is just as desperate as the rest. Ron Perlman and John C McGinley are both here just to have big names in the film, they are mostly just cameo like performances.

StoryThe story follows the high school dropout that built a drug business worth $68 million simply by trafficking the drugs across the Canadian border. This is based on the true story, which does show us through the eyes of the leader just how he pulled the operation off, while preaching about the laws on drugs within America. While it might be an interesting story, it is one we have seen before, it does promote breaking the law, which doesn’t seem like a good thing to be promoting, while relying heavily on the drug community to support the actions of these young men. We do also have too many pointless party scenes, which are clearly here just to put some boobs in the film and fill time.

Biopic/Comedy/CrimeThe does show the drug trafficking side of the people involved in the story, shows how their lives changed with an idea however illegal it turned out to be. It does use the comedy to make light of the situation which is fine because this doesn’t ever feel like it needs to be serious, while the crimes being committed show just how the people involved didn’t care about the punishment they could face.

SettingsThe film is set between the borders of America and Canada, it shows the different life styles that Nate would have had between his time making the money and the environment taken to do the drug smuggling.


Scene of the Movie –
The travelling.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The pointless party scenes.

Final ThoughtsThis is an interest look at the true story, it shows how the operation came about, how quickly it gathered steam and how the lives of the people involved were changed forever.

 

Overall: Interesting true story.

Rating

 

 

The Belko Experiment (2017)

Director: Greg McLean

Writer: James Gunn (Screenplay)

Starring: John Gallagher Jr, Tony Goldwyn, Adria Arjona, John C McGinley, Melonie Diaz, Owain Yeoman, Sean Gunn, Michael Rooker

 

Plot: In a twisted social experiment, 80 Americans are locked in their high-rise corporate office in Bogotá, Colombia and ordered by an unknown voice coming from the company’s intercom system to participate in a deadly game of kill or be killed.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Suspenseful Filled Thriller

 

Story: The Belko Experiment starts as we arrive in Bogota, Colombia where we meet a select few of our American business employees working in an isolated building, we have Mike (Gallagher Jr), Barry (Goldwyn), Leandra (Arjona), Wendell (McGinley), Dany (Diaz) and Bud (Rooker).

The normal office job for the America employees changes drastically when they notice all the locals have been sent home by the new guards and an announcement comes over the system that 2 employees need to be killed in 30 minutes as all the doors and windows lock down.

First believing this is a test the employees remain calm at first but when people’s heads start exploding from the trackers the employees have this turns into a life and death battle, the next message is that the employees have 2 hours to kill 30 of the remaining 76 people or the people holding them will randomly select 60, but the questions are why are they being tested like this? Who will turn on their friends? And when will they get out?

 

Thoughts on The Belko Experiment

 

Characters/PerformanceMike is a high-ranking supervisor in the office, he knows everyone having a good relationship with his boss Barry and his girlfriend Leandra. Barry is the CEO of the company, he is the highest ranked member of staff, he does the best he can to control the people through this panic. Leandra is another one of the supervisors, she knows she is beautiful and happy to flaunt it. Wendell is the older employee who clearly feels stuck in the cubical while seeing younger people being his boss, Dany is the newest employee, she deals with not knowing people but her past will help her through the conflict. Bud is the building maintenance that tries to find a place to get out of the enclosed building. It would be fair to say we only learn the characters nature during the situation rather than before it.

Performance wise, John Gallagher Jr steps up into a leading role after quality performances in supporting roles last year and he fits this role wonderfully. Tony Goldwyn is fantastic in this role being heartless through the situation. John C McGinley is great even if his role feels like all of the creepy of Dr Cox without the sarcasm. Adrian Arjona is good in this role where she is a strong leading woman. Michael Rooker is good for his role with Melonie Diaz doing a good job too. The truth is the whole cast is great through the film showing the panic required for the situation.

StoryThe story of an office block needing to kill or be killed to survive a test is one of the most intense thrillers we have seen in years. This completely keeps you on edge as you need to see just how far the office workers will go when pushed to the limits. This does have a lot borrowed from Battle Royale but so what it just changes the environment making it adults rather than kids going through the same test.

Action/Horror/ThrillerThe action side of the story is with how the people will be getting attack and killed which gets creative in places. The horror side of the story comes from seeing how people will react to everything going on as you get to see the worst in people. The thriller side of the film is the highlight because all you want is to see who will make it out alive.

SettingsThe whole film is set within the office complex in the middle of nowhere, the people are trapped inside with nowhere to run, no way of getting help making this tick all the boxes for a brilliant use of location.

Special EffectsFrom the first kill to the last each kill looks fantastic through the film showing us the just how to make effects work in film.

Final ThoughtsThis is easily one of the thrillers of the year, it has moments of social commentary too which add a dark humour to what we are seeing and you actually feel like you are not sure who will survive the day.

 

Overall: Potential thriller of the year?

Rating

 

 

The Rock (1996)

rockDirector: Michael Bay

Writer: David Weisberg, Douglas Cook, Mark Rosner (Screenplay) David Weisberg, Douglas Cook (Story)

Starring: Sean Connery, Nicolas Cage, Ed Harris, John Spencer, David Morse, William Forsythe, Michael Biehn, Vanessa Marcil, John C. McGinley, Tony Todd

 

Plot: A mild-mannered chemist and an ex-con must lead the counterstrike when a rogue group of military men, led by a renegade general, threaten a nerve gas attack from Alcatraz against San Francisco.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: One of the Best

 

Story: The Rock starts as General Francis Hummel (Harris) and his men including Major Baxter (Morse) take a military base by storm to steal a deadly bio-weapon. We also get to see the effects of the weapon when one of the men gets trapped in the room with it. We also get meet Stanley Goodspeed (Cage) who works as a chemical weapons disarmer.

General Hummel takes Alcatraz prison as his new base of operations where he has his weapons ready for launch unless his demands are met, he wants $100 Million that he can pay to fallen soldier’s family’s the money they deserve. Hummel has kept everything non-violent and keeps everything professional with his negotiations. We see how the FBI Director Womack (Spencer) and the rest of the authority figures in America give us the basic idea of what will be the consequences if the gas goes off and why plan A, B or C can’t work.

This has established the idea that we need our chemical expert Stanley and ex-inmate John Patrick Mason (Connery) who has been locked away with the key thrown away. The plan is to learn his route how he escaped from Alcatraz and use it to enter and get the upper hand on the men controlling the prison.

The Rock gives us an action movie that keeps all of the action in and from America with the terrorist side of the story being American soldiers. The odd couple chemistry between Goodspeed and Mason shows that people will go to lengths stop the men. I liked how Hummel’s also comes off very determined but not willing to take people’s lives into his hands wanting a peaceful ending to everything. we do get the basic action sides of the story but that doesn’t mean this is a bad movie. This is a fully enjoyable action film with a story that makes you question how you feel about Hummel’s.

 

Actor Review

 

Sean Connery: John Patrick Mason is the former inmate of Alcatraz who has been locked up many prisons which he has a habit of escaping from. John gets bought in on this mission because he knows how to get into Alcatraz but he isn’t playing by all the rules. The only man he respects out of the FBI unit is Goodspeed as the two have to become the heroes. Sean gives us one of the best performances of his career in this role showing he still had the action side of his older age.mason

Nicolas Cage: Stanley Goodspeed is the chemical expert that is considered the best in his field, as an FBI agent he gets bought into the situation to secure the bio-weapons that are threatening San Francisco. He has to work with Mason putting aside their differences to save the day. Nicolas is brilliant in this showing how he would become an action star for years to come.goodspeed

Ed Harris: General Francis Hummel is the man who is leading the operation take Alcatraz as his base to get the money owed to the men who died under his watch in black ops mission. He keeps everything non-lethal and wants to use the right paths even if some of the men are more trigger happy. Hummel makes for one of the most interesting villains in action film history because his cause is a worthy, he wants to negotiate in a forceful way without actually having causalities. We never really hate this villain because of this and he even does the right thing during the times when he men have gone out of line. Ed gives a brilliant performance in one of the best villains in action film history.hummels

David Morse: Major Tom Baxter is Hummel’s second in command he isn’t afraid to do jobs that Hummel’s doesn’t want to do and as the story unfold we learn how far he is willing to go. David is great in this supporting role.

Support Cast: The Rock has a massive supporting cast all in either military roles or authority roles.

Director Review: Michael BayMichael gives us one of the greatest action movies ever made.

 

Action: The Rock has great action throughout being is the hand to hand combat or explosions or gun fights.

Adventure: The Rock puts Goodspeed and Mason on an adventure to save the city.

Thriller: The Rock keeps us on our toes from start to finish.

Settings: The Rock uses Alcatraz for the setting which adds a unique take to the action side of the story.
Special Effects
: The Rock uses great effects for the action throughout without being too over the top.

Suggestion: The Rock is one for all the action fans to watch over and over because it is one of the best. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Car Chase.

Worst Part: Not much.

Action Scene Of The Film: Car Chase

Favourite Quote: Mason ‘Your “best”! Losers always whine about their best. Winners go home and fuck the prom queen.’

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: Nominated for Best Sound

Box Office: $134 Million

Budget: $70 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 16 Minutes

Tagline: Alcatraz. Only one man has ever broken out. Now five million lives depend on two men breaking in.

 

Overall: One of the best action movies ever made which is just easy to watch throughout.

Ratingcard

 

Point Break (1991)

pointDirector: Kathryn Bigelow

Writer: W Peter Iliff (Screenplay) Rick King, W Peter Iliff (Story)

Starring: Patrick Swayze, Keanu Reeves, Gary Busey, Lori Petty, John C McGinley, James Le Gross, John Philbin

 

Plot: An FBI agent goes undercover to catch a gang of bank robbers who may be surfers.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Film

 

Story: Point Break starts when fresh out of Quantico FBI agent Johnny Utah (Reeves) gets bought into the bank robbery department where he works with harden detective Pappas (Busey). The group of thieves known as the ‘E-Presidents’ have been robbing banks and Pappas is laughed at about his theory that the thieves are surfers, Johnny works with the idea and goes undercover as a surfer.

Undercover Johnny uses Tyler (Petty) to get in with the most respected surfers lead by Bodhi (Swayze). The deeper he gets in with these surfers the more it enrages his superior Ben Harp (McGinley) who wants to pull the plug. When Johnny learns who is involved and his new personal friendship gets put in jeopardy.presidents

Point Break must go down as a perfect fun action film, it isn’t too serious, it isn’t too action packed, it isn’t too comical, it just works as a fun film. Entering into the surfing world works for the film as it is something different for the crime world. The negatives would be obvious and that would be lack of professional behaviour from Johnny during the film, we never really learn the true motives of the Presidents unless it is as simple as just wanting to part all the time. This really is a guilty pleasure movie for the fans of action.

 

Actor Review

 

Patrick Swayze: Bodhi is the respected surfer who takes Johnny under his wing as he learns how to surf, but he is really the one leading the robberies. He is at one with the waves and his carefree life style is what draws respect from others. Patrick gives us a good performance and something different to what we would be used to seeing.

 brobhi

Keanu Reeves: Johnny Utah is the fresh FBI agent who goes undercover as a surfer to figure out if they are the Ex- Presidents. He is willing to take a chance to impress his experienced partner and make his boss pissed but can he figure out who the criminals are. Keanu showed here he was ready to step into the action genre giving us a good performance.

 johnny

Gary Busey: Pappas is the experienced partner who gives Johnny the idea about the thieves being surfers, he plays the comic relief really because he is wildly over the top with his reaction and ideas. Gary gives us a good performance in this supporting role playing the opposite to the role we all know him for in Lethal Weapon.

 pappius

Lori Petty: Tyler is the lady who helps Johnny get close to the rest of the surfers but while doing that he ends up becoming closer to her. Lori gives us a good performance even if she ends up falling to the back ground as the film unfolds.

 

Support Cast: Point Break has a supporting cast that includes the generic hot headed head of the authority, and the typical members of the crime ring, they all work for what the film is doing.

 

Director Review: Kathryn BigelowKathryn gives us a fun action film that still has it nearly 25 years on.

 

Action: Point Break has basic action with the chase after the robbery being the highlight.

Crime: Point Break brings us into a crime world without having it be all mob boss just a clever group of robbers.

Thriller: Point Break does keep you wondering how things will end up and the parachuting scenes bring you right to the edge of your seat.

Settings: Point Break creates basic settings where you would find the type of characters required in the film.

Suggestion: Point Break is one I think everyone should watch just for the fun factor involved in the film. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Robbery chase.

Worst Part: Everything wouldn’t happen with the technology we have now.

Action Scene Of The Film: Robbery chase both car and foot.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $43 Million

Budget: $24 Million

Runtime: 2 Hour 2 Minutes

Tagline: 100% Pure Adrenaline.

 

Overall: Adrenaline ride that never stop

Ratingcard

Identity (2003)

Director: James Mangold
Starring: John Cusack, Ray Liotta, Amanda Peet, John Hawkes, Alfred Molina, Clea Duvall, John C. McGinley, William Lee Scott, Jake Busey, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Rebecca De Mornay, Leila Kenzie, Holmes Osbourne, Bret Loehr,

Dr Malick (Alfred Molina) is doing research about a serial killer Malcolm Rivers. Rivers is going to be put to death the next night and Malick discovers something that could change the punishment of Rivers. Having a midnight hearing with Judge Taylor (Holmes Osbourne) the case is presented.

While the case goes on we go to a motel with a storm raging Larry (John Hawkes) meets a range of different characters looking for a room. starting with George York (John C. McGinley) carrying his injured wife Alice (Leila Kenzie) and step son Timmy York (Bret Loehr). The injury was caused in a car accident involving a driver Ed (John Cusack) and his fallen star actress Caroline (Rebecca De Mornay). After trying o get help Ed meets hooker Paris (Amanda Peet) and young couple Lou (William Lee Scott) Ginny (Clea Duvall). The final arrival is policeman Rhodes (Ray Liotta) and his prison transfer Robert Maine (Jake Busey).

After Caroline gets killed the guests at the motel start to panic to make matters worse Robert Maine has escaped. With this complex characters we are left to wonder who will make it through the night and what is the evidence to get this convected murder a new trial.

This is a good horror thriller using a basic concept leaving a group of people in the middle of nowhere with a killer on the loose. The story is pack full of twists and turns to keep you guessing from start until the big reveal at the end. The storm adds to the tension being built through out the movie.

A true thriller that hides all identities with shocking revelations on all characters a must for the thriller fans with part slasher.

My rating 78%