Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Movies of the Month {February}

Last month the hubby and I each signed up for a MoviePass membership. In case you are unfamiliar with the program, you pay $9.95 per month and can see as many movies in the theater as you'd like (there are a few restrictions... like "unlimited" means one per day, only certain theaters work and no 3D or IMAX films, but for the most part it's all-inclusive).

I've said it once and I'll probably say it a million times, but movies aren't my jam. I'm a frugal gal and have a hard time sitting still for extended periods of time because I feel as if I could be doing a billion and a half tasks at that moment, but the hubby LOVES movies so I am taking one for the team and enjoying "quality time" (his idea of QT, not mine) with him.


Due to my frugalness, my thought is, if we are paying for this membership, we better get our moneys worth... so off to the theater we go! And why not share our reviews/ critiques of the films with you?! So here are our February films...

Darkest Hour

Technically we saw this in January, but it was after I published my January post so it squeaked into February's share. I didn't know much about this movie going in, other than it was about Winston Churchill, but I guess that is the benefit of our MoviePass (if you are only paying $9.95/month, you can see movies that you otherwise may not go to the theater to check out). The hubby and I chuckled because when we saw the film, it was a Tuesday at 6:30pm and the theater was full of an older crowd. I asked him if he thought it was because of the day/ time/ promo (Tuesdays are $7 at our local theater) or because of the subject matter. He said it was probably a bit of both. Anywho, back to our thoughts. We both really enjoyed the movie. I am not a huge history buff (let's just say I learned what I needed to know for school and forget the majority of the info shortly after I took the tests), so I actually really enjoy historical based films because it's sort of like learning while being entertained (although I am very well aware that Hollywood tends to edit history to make it more appealing to movie-goers). We both appreciated that the movie was revealing what goes on behind the curtain, a "behind the scenes" sort of feel. Seeing as the end of the film surrounds Operation Dynamo, the hubby and I mentioned it felt as though we watched this and Dunkirk out of proper chronological order (but both are good films that can stand alone).



I've mentioned it before, but I will say it again - I do NOT do scary movies! If there is a scary movie on a commercial or a trailer at the theater I legit have to close my eyes and cover my ears. With that said, the hubby really wanted to see this movie. That means we do what any logical couple does... we go to different movies at the same time ;) While Ryan was watching Winchester, I was enjoying Pitch Perfect 3. I figured I'd still include the brief feedback the hubby gave on the movie in case you were interested in being scared poopless seeing it. Unfortunately, he was a bit underwhelmed. First, he said he was expecting it to be a little more about the house than it was. (He has actually been pretty interested in the construction of it for a couple years now so was stoked when he heard about the movie coming out.) Also, he said that it wasn't incredibly scary (probably due to the PG-13 rating). He said that most of the "scare" was predictable (i.e. looking into a mirror multiple times and expecting on an upcoming look that something would appear, etc). Had he not used his MoviePass, he said he would have been disappointed in paying full price (and actually commented that he probably would have enjoyed seeing Pitch Perfect 3 with me instead... but I won't say "I told ya so" to his face ;)).


Pitch Perfect 3

Although I normally dislike sequels (they tend to often feel like they are forced and just riding the coattails of success of the original movie), I really enjoyed Pitch Perfect and Pitch Perfect 2, so I figured I might as well go see the third! (Like some of the other movies we've seen thanks to our MoviePass, I don't know if I normally would have paid to see this one in the theater, but with our membership I figured I might as well.) If you've seen the first two movies in this series, you know what they are all about... An acapella singing group of ladies get into some sort of competition, drama/ craziness ensues and the Bellas somehow find a way to be victorious. This one was no different. I knew walking in that it would make me smile, tap my toes and have a good time. These movies aren't about some earth-shattering revolution or walking away with some life changing epiphany, they're just good old fashion entertainment. And entertained I was!


Molly's Game

Okay, so we didn't know much about this movie going in. In fact, the hubby knew absolutely nothing (and for some reason when I originally looked at it, I thought it was about a professional skier turned professional prostitute, so I was a bit off ;)). Maybe that's why we walked away liking it so much... because we had no expectations going into it... but, whatever the case, we both put it in our top three movies that we had seen thus far with out MoviePass. I do tend to enjoy movies that are "based on true stories" (even if they are "done up" to make them more marketable for Hollywood). The hubby and I were both glued to the screen with the story of Molly, a woman obsessed with being the best at whatever she did {whether that be Olympic skiing or controlling the seedy underworld of high stakes poker}. Now I have to go and read the book!


Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

This is another one we didn't know much about (I briefly read the synopsis but the hubby only knew the very small snidbit I told him). It actually wasn't playing at our nearby theaters so we had to head to Escondido. With so many movies being remakes of old ideas, I appreciate when an original movie comes along. I'll be honest, it was a little slow for me (but that's probably because in today's society we want everything instantaneously) but I guess that sort of goes with the whole idea of the movie, huh?! It was dark, funny and heart-felt. The hubby and I both enjoyed the movie and could see why it has won a ton of awards already. I'd say, this would probably be one I'd rent instead of needing to go to the theater (not a ton of action or aesthetically appealing that you'd need to see on the big screen), but I'd recommend seeing it nonetheless.


The Post

For someone who says movies aren't her jam, I was pretty surprised when I went to the theater on my own (and not just because the hubby was seeing a scary movie and I decided to see something a little more "wholesome" - this time the hubby was rock climbing so I went by myself). This was the final day that The Post was playing at our local theater so I figured I'd hit it up before it went away. Similar to our other recent movies, I didn't know much about it before grabbing my ticket (other than it was about "shadiness in the government that a newspaper uncovers"). I had no idea that the film was based on true events, the Pentagon Papers (even if all of the details aren't exactly accurate). Similar to Darkest Hour, I was excited that the majority of the story was historically accurate because it felt like learning while being entertained. The movie definitely had a great cast who all did wonderfully. Some may say the "feminist" movies are becoming white noise, but as a female, I appreciate seeing strong women become successful! The movie reminded me that demanding the truth can be easier said than done at times, but that doesn't mean it's any less important to require of those around us.


The 15:17 To Paris

If you've been to the movies recently, you've probably seen the preview for this movie (or maybe they have just been pushing it super hard around here since we live next to a military base). The movie is a reenactment of a terrorist attack that was heroically stopped by three young Americans. The film tells some of their back stories (since the event itself would have made for a very short movie) and follows them along on their European vacation. What I thought was awesome was that they used the actual guys in the movie. They may not have been actors (and their acting skills may not stack up against folks in Hollywood), but I appreciate that they were able to tell their own story. I wouldn't say this was an award winning film in my book, but it did get us thinking about what we would do if a crisis were to arise in our midst.


Lady Bird

So I put a call out on my social media and asked "What is the best movie you've seen recently?" and one friend said Lady Bird. I had seen the name of the movie but knew nothing about it. Since the hubby was heading tot he climbing gym for a bit and the theater is right down the street, I asked him to drop my off there first (yup - I saw another movie on my own!). I had zero expectations since I had never seen a trailer or heard anything about the movie (except for Smitha's thumbs up) and would say I walked away very pleasantly pleased. When the hubby asked me about it, I said that it was sort of like a Juno. A coming-of-age story, one that follows a seventeen year old through her senior year of high school as she navigates her first love, her first play, applying to college, prom, friend drama, issues with parents, etc. The movie seemed to perfectly capture the tumultuous transition from childhood to "adulthood" and all of the awkwardness that ensues.


I, Tonya

Unlike some of the other movies, we were WELL AWARE of what this one was about... We never saw a trailer or anything, but we grew up when the Harding vs Kerrigan drama was unfolding so we were versed in the story. For the small amount of fanfare we had seen for this movie, both the hubby and I walked out of the theater LOVING it! We both enjoyed the gritty, 90s feel of the film, the way that at times the actors spoke into the camera (sort of like they do in The Office), and the overall realness of the film. It in no way vindicated Tonya, yet in an interview I read after I saw the film, Tonya said that the only two clarifications she needed to make were about the fur coat and about how often she cusses. It was like a trashy triumph. Now I am not saying we should totally excuse bad behavior based on the circumstances of someone's life, but I was surprised at how much I was rooting for Tonya in the end (despite her "easy to dislike" persona).


12 Strong

The hubby and I tried to go see this on Valentine's Day (romantic, huh?!), but the MoviePass app was experiencing technical difficulties so went the next night. This movie is based on the first Special Forces team deployed to Afghanistan after 9/11. I was a little leery at first because my cousin worked in the World Trade Center (he, thankfully, was down the street at the printer when the planes hit) and I wasn't sure how the movie would make me feel. I'd say that although the film is based around the September 11th attack (and the war that ensued), the mention of it was very brief. Also, I wasn't sure how loosely based on the true story it would be, seeing as it was coming out almost 16.5 years later. In fact, the film is based on a non-fiction book, Horse Soldiers, by Doug Stanton. The story itself is crazy - twelve men teaming up with a warlord and riding into battle on horseback (against the Taliban who has tanks, artillery and the manpower to wipe out cities). The action was engaging and intense, but there wasn't much character development. I would say that it's a pretty incredible story, but the movie itself was pretty eh, so-so (but that might also be because war movies aren't my jam).


Black Panther

The hubby and I asked our friends if they wanted to take their kids to the movies with us. I'll be honest, I don't know comic books, but I do enjoy the superhero movies. Since I don't know the story of Black Panther I went in with little expectations. With that said, I really enjoyed it. I thought it was very entertaining and kept me on the edge of my seat for the majority of the movie. I don't know if this is technically a spoiler or not, but you've been warned... Anyway, the only negative I have to say is the fact that I had seen a preview for the upcoming Avenger's movie and saw that Blank Panther was in it, so I knew he couldn't die in this film. But other than that I really enjoyed it. I appreciated that it touched on moral and political issues, making the audience think while enjoying their popcorn in their nice, plush seats (even if they don't fully realize the implications. Also, having strong, kick@$$ black actors as more than supporting roles is a huge win in my book!


I think it's safe to say we took advantage of the MoviePass membership for the month of February! I saw ten movies while the hubby saw eight... Meaning each of my movies cost about a dollar and the hubby's movies cost him about $1.25 per film. I don't know that we will see this many movies again in a single month, but there were just so many movies that we hadn't seen so we had a ton of options to choose from... Now that we're somewhat caught up the viewing will definitely slow down (since only a few new movies are released per month), but hopefully we will still cash in on our membership.

What was the last movie you saw in the theater?

1 comment:

SD Mom said...

What a great post Carlee! Glad the thumbs up helped!