THERE ARE SOME WARS YOU WALK AWAY FROM

brokencityBROKEN CITY (2013)
3 out of 5 stars

Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) has been arrested for the murder of a street thug that raped and murdered his girlfriend’s sister. The Captain asks Mayor Nicholas Hostetler (Russell Crowe) for help and they eliminate the crucial evidence that frees Taggart. Seven years later, Taggart is now a private investigator and the Mayor uses this favour to find out the object of his wife’s affair.

Seriously, I wanted to watch the movie for Mark Wahlberg and Alona Tal. There was a bonus Justin Chambers but he’s too sleazy for my liking! Well, there’s a lot more to what’s going on with the Mayor and his wife and it is explained as the movie progresses. What’s not new is that politicians always play dirty and they always have a trick up their sleeve. Pity Mark Wahlberg whose character has to pick up other people’s pieces and solve the entire thing at the price of his life.

THUNDER BUDDIES FOR LIFE

TED (2012)
3 and a half out of 5 stars

I was one of those who wanted to watch the movie once I saw the trailer. I mean, the “thunder song” was already a sign of crude and funny things to come!

Narrator: No matter how big a splash you make in this world whether you’re Corey Feldman, Frankie Muniz, Justin Bieber or a talking teddy bear, eventually, nobody gives a shit. 

For those who don’t know, John (Mark Wahlberg) made a wish when he was eight years old and it came true – his teddy bear came alive! Ted became a celebrity, well, briefly. Soon, 27 years have passed and John is in a relationship with Lori (Mila Kunis), who feels that John cannot really grow up with Ted around.

Ted: I look like Snuggles’ accountant.

And the hilarious scenes begin!

Personally, I liked the parts where Ted was on his own, fending himself against the general and creepy public away from John. Especially the one at the back of the grocery stall he works at.

Creepy guy: Are you alone?
Ted: Well, you know, you’re never alone when you’re with Christ.

Of course, who can forget the scene where John tries to guess the white trash name?

And I totally lost it at this part…

Ted: Back off, Susan Boyle!

Well, I feel I do the movie injustice when I write it out because it doesn’t sound as funny as the movie is. While you watch it, keep your eyes open for an uncredited cameo! And of course I’m not going to mention it here, it’s uncredited for a reason.

THE PRIDE OF LOWELL

THE FIGHTER (2010)
– 4 and a half out of 5 stars

The Fighter tells the story of Micky “Irish” Ward (Mark Wahlberg), a professional boxer, and his half-brother, Dicky Eklund (Christian Bale), his trainer and former professional boxer who has now succumbed to crack addiction. Along with their manager-Mother, Alice and seven other sisters, they support Micky in his career but Dicky’s addiction impedes Micky’s path to be successful – being late for training, for his flight to Micky’s match and being arrested for charges. Micky also has his support system of O’Keefe, a police sergeant who knows about Dicky holding him back, and bartender-girlfriend, Charlene, who is very tough and fights back against Micky’s overbearing mother and sisters. Can Micky ever break free of his family to be the champion he was meant to be?

WOW. It’s a really good movie with actors giving their all for their performances and you find yourself rooting for Micky against the odds he faces. I’m in awe of Amy Adams because she plays such a tough chick, lots of f-bombs and her attitude is rockin’. She delivers my favourite line from the movie, and possibly out of all the Amy Adams films so far.

Charlene Fleming: Don’t call me skank. I’ll rip that nasty hair right out of your fucking head.

Well, she really does have nasty hair (along with her six other sisters – same hairstyle). Their mother, Alice (Melissa Leo), is domineering and seems to be money-minded and turns a blind eye when Dicky is concerned. Christian Bale lost 30 pounds for this role and it made his eyes look really big and grin really wide. He can’t help his addiction and can’t seem to forget his few minutes of fame when he was at his prime and it was prison that really shook him up and brought him back to reality. The ending match was really hard to watch because Micky kept getting hit but I did learn that there’s a strategy in boxing.

As at time of post, Christian Bale and Melissa Leo have won the Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress awards respectively at the 68th Golden Globes Awards.

THE LITTLE RED PRIUS

THE OTHERS GUYS (2010)
– 3 and a half out of 5 stars

 Caught The Other Guys the other day and it was really funny! I mean, the combination of Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell is already funny… so how about them as partners?

With detectives Danson and Highsmith (Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson and Samuel L. Jackson) being the most bad-ass and beloved cops of NYC, Terry and Allen (Wahlberg and Ferrell) are left to do all the paperwork instead. When Terry and Allen accidentally stumble onto a seemingly simple case that is actually complicated on many levels, they find danger at every turn and even their shoes were stolen.

Terry Hoitz: I’m like a peacock. You gotta let me fly!

Mark Wahlberg is pretty funny as the frustrated cop because he’s really mad at the audit-crazy and paperwork-loving Allen. Throughout the show, you’ll realize all these totally hot ladies making eyes at Ferrell – seriously, I have no idea where the magnetism is coming from. I’d rather go for Marky Mark! Another scene involving Allen’s mother-in-law is particularly funny because she has to pass all these really dirty messages between the couple. Plus, stay till the end of the credits for a short scene, and I like the fact that the ending credits has economical statistical facts all over in cool funky colours – what a way to know boring old stats.

IT’S A KILLSHOT!

DATE NIGHT (2010)
– 3 and a half out of 5 stars

Date Night focuses on Phil and Claire Foster, a bored New Jersey couple going to the city to spice up their marriage. It goes awfully wrong when, unable to get seats at a uptown seafood restaurant, they take the reservations of a certain “Mr. and Mrs. Tripplehorns”. They get chased by two thugs, with hilarious results and end up getting help from Claire’s client, Holbrooke Grant, a hot and shirtless Mark Wahlberg. They end up in a wild car chase, meeting the real Tripplehorns and going to a strip club.

(There’s even a reference to Sixteen Candles!)

The movie is laugh-out-loud funny though you can’t really recall any funny lines – maybe “You just took our reservations? What kind of people are you?!” when they met up with the real Tripplehorns. You know stealing reservations is the least on their minds when they’re getting chased with guns. Steve Carell is funny as usual, barfing and his over-the-top expressions are just priceless. Especially his subtle signs of jealousy and envy whenever Mark “Shirtless” Wahlberg is around. Tiny Fey is funny too, because of the “laptop sticky thing” as well as her excellent chemistry with Steve Carell. These two should just make more movies together. 3 and a half out of 5 stars.

Last of all, please stay till the END of the credits – funnier outtakes awaits.

SALMON, LIKE THE FISH

THE LOVELY BONES (2009)
– 4 out of 5 stars

The Lovely Bones is truly a long-awaited movie. After hearing about its book-to-movie adaptation, I read the book more than two years ago and was kinda disappointed that the release would be delayed till March 2010.

Based on the novel by Alice Sebold, it tells the tale of Susie Salmon, a 14-year-old girl who was murdered and how she continues to watch over her family and her murderer while living in the In-Between, somewhere between Heaven and Earth. The murder comes at an inappropriate time, because her crush had just asked her out and she has yet to experience her first kiss. Her father’s hobby of building junks in bottles will become lost as Susie was the only one who appreciated the art.

Stanley Tucci is freakingly creepy as George Harvey – he got an Oscar nod for Best Supporting Actor. With his unkempt hair, moustache and his obsession to paint his roses red, my first suspect would be him. (He’s better off as the fashionista in The Devil Wears Prada).

At 138 minutes long, it can be quite long a movie but you wouldn’t feel it because you will be rooting for the Salmons as her story grips you right from the beginning. Her family starts to crumble after her murder. Her father is bent on finding the murderer while her aggrieved mother wants to move on. Her murderer, Harvey, starts getting complacent but keeps his guard on when Jack (Susie’s father) and Lindsey (Susie’s sister) start to suspect their “unsuspecting neighbour”, Mr. Harvey. The climax of the movie came when Lindsey broke into Harvey’s house to gather evidence (that useless cop refuses to do anything without evidence) and that was truly a heart-in-mouth moment. The ending is apt because Harvey truly deserved it.

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?

THE DEPARTED (2006)
– 4 out of 5 stars

OMG, I still remember how I didn’t manage to catch this movie once my ‘A’ Levels ended!

Two men from opposite sides of the law are undercover within the mob and the state police, and the state police’s aim is to bring down Frank Costello – the mob boss. However, it becomes clear that there’s a rat in their midst and both sides want to bring down the rats; the action starts from there. Every minute is really exciting and the moment comes when both rats come face to face.