Ride Along 2
Genre: Action, Comedy
Starring: Ice Cube, Kevin Hart
IMDb: 5.4 of 484 ratings
Ride Along 2, featuring the comedy duo from Ride Along (Ice Cube and Kevin Hart) have joined forces once again for another adventure (an action, comedy film. )
Con- This movie is being released in January. Often the place where movies go to die.
Pro- It’s part of a franchise. If any January movie could be decent, it will likely be a film which is part of a franchise.
Con- The film is clearly made to squeeze more money out of a tired formula. Can you blame Universal for trying? The original Ride Along (2014) made 134 million alone in the United States and only cost 25 million to make.
Pro-(?) This sequel has a 40 million dollar budget which means everything will be “bigger and better” than the original.
Final thoughts: With little to no competition as far as comedies go, this film could stand to have a decent opening weekend. Ice Cube and Kevin Hart can still draw in the crowds, especially those who enjoyed the first film. It will likely earn its budget back, but from a critical standpoint be lackluster.
My Call: I won’t see it in theaters. Maybe check it out when it comes on television or premium channels.
Norm of the North
Genre: Animated, Adventure, Comedy
Starring: Rob Schneider, Heather Graham
IMDb: 3.8 of 88 Ratings
A polar bear named norm and several of his lemming friends travel to New York City in attempt to stop the corporate world from destroying his arctic home.
I love animated movies, but I’m dreading this one with a passion. I’m all for the protection of the arctic and its environment. (I’m big on conservation.) This movie seems to force that issue with tired, childish humor, and bad writing.
Con: As we saw a few years ago with The Nut Job (2014), animated films in January (not related to a franchise) can be truly terrible.
Con: Nothing about this film looks impressive.
My Call: Save your money for something with talent. Like Kung Fu Panda 3. I’m not saying that will be great, but I’m saying it will be far better than this.
Staring: Theo James, Dakota Fanning, Richard Gere
IMBd: 6.1 of 277 ratings
An older philanthropist attempts to right wrongs of the past using a newlywed couple.
Con- This movie has been done repeatedly and using a better cast. I’m not impressed with Theo James, and it’s been too long since Richard Gere gave me a great performance.
Con- This movie is not part of a franchise, but something more “original”. Coming out in January means it’s not worth much.
My Call: Pass- nothing about the film appeals to me. I have no interest to ever see it.
13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi
Genre: Action, Drama, Thriller
Director: Michael Bay
An American Ambassador is killed during an attack at a U.S. compound in Libya as a security team struggles to make sense out of the chaos.
Con- Michael Bay directed this film. Here we are tackling an unfortunate and sensitive recent American tragedy and a director who lacks sensibility and crediblility is at the helm.
Con- Not only am I sick and tired of hearing about Benghazi. I deplore the very idea of making a movie to profit from that tragedy.
My Call: Going to just ignore this one best I can. It’s coming out in January, about a subject I’m not interested in spending time watching about, by a director with little to no talent or credibility (unless explosions are a talent).
Andrew’s Pick of the week
Band of Robbers (2015)
Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Crime
IMDb: 7.2 of 139 ratings
It tells the story of Tom and Huck as grownups. They are seeking the treasure which had eluded them throughout their childhood.
If you can find this film, I think you will enjoy it far more than the rest coming out this week. It has a bit of that old American lore with Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. Some action, some crime, and some laughs. Again, it’s January, so I’m not promising greatness, but I think it is still a step up from all other releases this week. (Perhaps this month.)