Firstly, apologies for the lack of new Screenkicker articles this month, I’ve been burnt out after the film festival and also I really needed to finish Arkham Knight. Anyway, it’s Mini-Kicker time again where I throw some bite-sized reviews into your eager open mouths. This time the theme connecting the three movies is ‘man befriends strange, unbelievable creature’ with each featuring respectively living teddy bears, dinosaurs, and James Franco. You’re right, I picked the films before I came up with a theme.
Ted 2 (2015)
After A Million Ways To Die In The West, Seth McFarlane has figured out that he’s much more popular when he doesn’t actually appear on screen. Ted 2 isn’t as novel, or hilarious as the first movie, but it’s still very funny. Using a plot that I’m pretty sure was already an episode of Family Guy, the movie involves Ted fighting to have the government recognise him as a person. Mark Wahlberg shows again that he’s a brilliant comedy actor as his chemistry with Ted is the heart of the film. The best jokes come at the expense of Amanda Seyfried’s face and a side-splitting trip to an improv comedy club. Ted 2 is overlong and recycles the plot from the first film but has enough laughs to make it worthwhile viewing.
Jurassic World (2015)
Jurassic World shouldn’t be so good. Firstly it comes from a director with only a quirky indie picture under his belt and secondly it’s a sequel to f**king Jurassic Park! What could have been a cash-in on a well known brand is actually a brilliant, action-packed, blockbuster that pays respect to the original. It does this by cleverly satirizing the trend of films where ‘bigger = better’. A great cast including everyone’s favourite movie everyman Chris Pratt throw around funny lines while dinosaurs smash, crash, crunch, and munch all around. Much like its genetically spliced main monster, Jurassic World borrows from films such as Romancing The Stone, Aliens, and many others. It’s always entertaining and I loved all of the affectionate nods to the first movie. Apart from that little cartoon DNA guy, he can go f**k himself.
True Story (2015)
True Story is one of those movies where the actual story is more interesting than the film is. It’s a very simple concept – journalist Mike Finkel (Jonah Hill) gets to interview murder suspect Christian Longo (James Franco) before his trial. Did Longo really murder his family? Why is he so interested in talking to Finkel? Is he telling the truth? These are all questions you could get the answers to by using Google for about five minutes. True Story on the other hand moves at a glacial pace. You’ll start to forget why you care after another scene where Jonah Hill stares mournfully at the notes he puts up on his wall. Felicity Jones doesn’t have much to do as Hill’s wife other than look concerned all the time. The movie goes for a Primal Fear style vibe but misses the mark by a mile. Sometimes truth is far more boring than fiction.
Have you seen any of these? What did you think? Which would you be most afraid of being trapped in a cage with – a dinosaur, a bear, or James Franco? Let me know in the comments below.