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Showing posts from November, 2010

Time to Play Catch-Up

I really want to get caught up on my DVD reviews, but I simply don't have the time. So, I've decided to keep it simple and write a paragraph on each film. I will give the title, the year it was released in the U.S., the rating and the director of each film. I will follow that with a few thoughts on the film and a final grade. I will certainly let you know if you should see it, or skip it. If you wish to know more on a film, please comment and I can elaborate. I've seen a bunch more movies over the last three months, but I've decided to keep it fresh with films from the last two years (with one exception). I'll start with the films I've seen most recently and go from there. As I've stated before, it's been a rough month and a half for films. October was a very good month with The Social Network, Let Me In and Jackass 3D, but November has been a snoozer. December should be better with the releases of True Grit, TRON: Legacy, Little Fockers, Black Swan and…

Top 30 TV Shows of All Time

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10. The X-Files ('93-'02)
Mulder and Scully were my heroes in the 90's. Every single episode is either enjoyable, creepy, scary, funny, weird or fresh. The first X-Files film was awesome of course, but the second one was actually quite bad. We shall see if a third film gets made, but I think they should leave it at that. David Duchovny (The Joneses, Evolution) is always a treat to watch on screen.

9. Big Brother ('00-Present)
I may be in the minority amongst my peers, but A LOT of people watch this show. It's good old fashioned summer fun. Three episodes a week? You can't beat that! It doesn't try to be something it's not like Survivor does. It's sheer raw emotion. There's always a small group of people who you can root for, as well as some people you absolutely despise. It's amazing to see just how crazy people can be. I'm talking seemingly normal people, not crazies from Jersey Shore or Real Housewives and all that crap.

8. Reno 911! ('…

Top 30 TV Shows of All Time

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20. Community ('09-Present)
Thursday's are one of my favorite nights for television because of NBC's Community and The Office. It didn't take long for me to get hooked on this show. Chevy Chase (Fletch, Caddyshack), Ken Jeong (The Hangover, Role Models) and Joel McHale (The Soup, The Informant!) first attracted me to the show. But the whole cast (minus Yvette Nicole Brown) is quite good. If you've ever spent time at a Community College, you should love this show.

19. Freaks and Geeks ('99-'00)
This show vaulted so many careers. Seth Rogen, James Franco, Peter Segel and Martin Starr all got their start on this show. Also, Judd Apatow, Jake Kasdan and Mike White directed/wrote a lot of episodes. America just wasn't ready for this show yet. Although I can't relate to many of the characters, I know a lot of people who can. You've seen episodes of this show, even if you don't remember.

18. Hung ('09-Present)
This show rules. HBO continues to produ…

Top 30 TV Shows of All Time

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30. Space Ghost Coast to Coast ('93-'99, '01, '03-'04)
This was one of the first Adult Swim shows I began watching. An animated Space Ghost would interview real celebrities from a strange planet. His sidekicks Moltar and Brak would add fuel to the fire. Space Ghost did interviews with the likes of Jim Carrey, Weird Al, Willie Nelson and Bill Shatner to name a few.

29. Tosh.0 ('09-Present)
This is one of my favorite new shows. It airs quite often on Comedy Central, and Daniel Tosh is hilarious. It's basically just like The Soup with Joel McHale, but way dirtier and funnier. You won't ever need to go on YouTube ever again.

28. Jackass ('00-'02)
Jackass only lasted three seasons, which is hard to believe. Although their episodes aren't usually as funny as their films, they're still worth watching. Still one of the best MTV shows ever made. We shall see if a fourth film will ever be made.

27. SpongeBob SquarePants ('99-Present)
To be honest, I …

Predators (2010) R

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For what it's worth, this is officially the third Predator chapter. The original Predator (starring Arnie) was fresh, fun and action-packed. Predator 2 was a much different film, set in a big city. It wasn't great by any means, but Danny Glover (Saw, Lethal Weapon) helped it along. The two Aliens vs. Predators are not considered sequels. The first AVP was scary bad, so I didn't dare go near the second film. I had high hopes for this film for some reason. Robert Rodriguez (Sin City, Machete) produced it and Adrien Brody (Splice, The Darjeeling Limited) stars in it. Sounded like a winning combination. It took me about a minute to realize this film was going to be disappointing.

Director Nimrod Antal (Armored, Vacancy) is fairly new to film-making, and it shows. His two previous films are at least somewhat suspenseful. This film is anti-climatic and predictable. The film begins with Royce (Brody) waking up as he is falling through the air. It takes him a minute to grasp that h…

Hello Followers

Sincere apologies for the lack of reviews as of late. I have recently found a job and that takes away most of my energy. I promise that I will continue the blog, but there will be days that I am unable to access my Blog, unfortunately. Films that I see in theaters will be reviewed as fast as possible, but I'm backed up on DVD reviews. I'll pick and choose which films I'll share with everyone. Tuesday and Thursday are my upcoming days off, so I will try my best to get caught up. Reviews often take over an hour to write, not to mention the rest of the features on the site. If you would like to help out, please click on the advertisements. I earn a small amount of money for each click. Every little bit helps. Thanks for tuning in, and please feel free to comment on each review/list. Comments let me know that people are out there reading this, and that motivates me to continue to do what I love.

Love, Jack Ryan

P.S. I have been listing my favorite television shows of all-time. T…

Top 50 Directors

10. Sam Mendes
Mendes won an Oscar for his first film, American Beauty. He has made five films to date, and they're all very good. Jarhead was one of the most underrated films of the decade. Revolutionary Road stars DiCaprio and Winslet; which is a golden recipe. His most recent film, 2009's Away We Go starring John Krasinski, is quirky and touching.
-American Beauty
-Revolutionary Road
-Jarhead

9. Wes Anderson
All six of Anderson's films are different, fun, interesting and good. Wes introduced us to Owen Wilson, Luke Wilson and Jason Schwartzman. The Darjeeling Limited is one of my favorite films of all-time. I've never seen anything quite like it. His films aren't for everyone. I haven't met too many people that have actually seen a Wes Anderson film.
-The Darjeeling Limited
-Rushmore
-The Royal Tenenbaums

8. David Fincher
Fincher's first film, Alien 3, was a fail. But he didn't write the awful script, and there was a lot to admire in that film. He's teamed …

Top 50 Directors

30. Paul Haggis
Haggis is actually better known as a writer, and he's won two Oscars. Both were for 2005's Crash. One was for best original screenplay and the other was for best picture. His third film hits theaters this Friday (The Next Three Days, starring Russell Crowe). He has written both new Bond films, as well as three recent Clint Eastwood films.
-Crash
-In the Valley of Elah
-The Next Three Days (11/19)

29. Alejandro González Iñárritu
To date, Alejandro has released three films. The "death trilogy" started with 2000's Amores Perros and ended with 2006's Babel. The middle film was 2003's 21 Grams. All three films have the same theme and slightly tie together. He has a fourth film, Biutiful, set to be released in late December. We shall see if it ties together with the other three films. I can't wait!
-21 Grams
-Amores Perros
-Babel

28. Ben Stiller
Stiller is one of the best comedic actors in Hollywood, but he's also a terrific director. Remember, he …

Top 50 Directors

Apologies for not having many reviews as of late. There hasn't been any films worth seeing in theaters lately. And I haven't gotten any new releases from Netflix in a while. So, I will try and keep everyone interested with these lists. I have covered my favorite actors and actresses, and will now move onto directors. The directors must be alive and still working. So, I had to leave off Stanley Kubrick, which is a shame. Each director must have two films under his/her name. This is an up-to-date list, so some older directors slipped a bit. As I did before, I will comment on each director and list 2/3 of their best films. After the list is complete, I will list 20 honorable mentions. Enjoy!

50. Kevin Smith
Kevin is known for his unconventional comedies that he usually co-stars in. Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Jason Lee, Jason Mewes and George Carlin (deceased) often appear in his films. Jay and Silent Bob is easily his best film. He combines elements/roles from all his films and it…

Top 50 Actresses

10. Ellen Page
Canadian actress Ellen Page has quickly won the hearts of the movie-going audience. A lot of people don't realize that she appeared in a few Trailer Park Boys episodes way back in the day. She arrived with a bang in 2005's Hard Candy. My, oh my, did that film throw me for a loop. But 2007 was her coming out party, as she dazzled in Juno.
-Juno
-Whip It
-Hard Candy

9. Maggie Gyllenhaal
Two Gyllenhaal's, two top ten actors. She truly is wonderful to watch on screen. She's actually quite funny at times, as seen in a hilarious performance in Away We Go. It's unfortunate that she won't have a role in 2012's The Dark Knight Rises.
-Away We Go
-The Dark Knight
-Crazy Heart

8. Cate Blanchett
Cate has been nominated for an Oscar five times! Who else could portray Bob Dylan and Katharine Hepburn, and get nominated for both roles? Here are a couple underrated films she's terrific in: The Good German and Heaven.
-I'm Not There.
-The Aviator
-The Talented Mr. R…

Top 50 Actresses

30. Vera Farmiga
Farmiga burst onto the scene in 2006's The Departed, as she courted both Matt Damon and Leonardo DiCaprio. Last year she was nominated for an Oscar for her role in Up in the Air. Everyone in that film was sensational.
-Up in the Air
-The Departed
-Orphan

29. Halle Berry
Most people first noticed Halle in X-Men or Swordfish. Although she is a very beautiful woman, she's not afraid to play worn-out and beaten down characters. Her performance in Monster's Ball is one of the best performances ever.
-Monster's Ball
-X-Men
-Gothika

28. Kate Hudson
Kate came out of nowhere to star as Penny Lane in Cameron Crowe's beautiful film Almost Famous. She's always a blast when on screen. She has so much life and spunk. Amazingly, she's only 31 years old. I have a feeling she will be around just as long as her mother (Goldie Hawn) was.
-Almost Famous
-The Skeleton Key
-The Killer Inside Me

27. Rose Byrne
Rose is a terrific Australian-born actress with an already fantastic …

Top 50 Actresses

Last week I counted down the top 100 actors. This week I'm going to count down the top 50 actresses. This list is a little shorter, mainly because I don't watch a lot of "chick flicks" or female dominated films. Take in mind that this is not a beauty pageant or a popularity contest. This list is based strictly on acting skills. Being charming, pretty and funny doesn't hurt. There's a good mix of funny women and serious actresses. I'm listing three of the best performances from each actress. I will give a couple thoughts on each woman. This is an up-to-date list, so not only is it based on their previous work, but (more importantly) their most recent films. Let us begin!

50. Diane Lane
It took Lane a while to get starring roles in Hollywood. The turn of the century paved the way to roles in like films The Perfect Storm, Hard Ball and The Glass House. Her very best role was in the film Unfaithful, opposite Richard Gere. Her new film Secretariat is doing prett…

Due Date (2010) R

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Acclaimed director Todd Phillips' (The Hangover, Old School) new comedy Due Date was supposed to satisfy our funny bone before The Hangover Part II drops next May. Instead it may be Phillips' weakest film yet. He has a great résumé that also includes Starsky & Hutch, Road Trip and School for Scoundrels. Four screenwriters are credited (including Phillips), and that's usually a bad sign. It has to be very difficult to write a script with three other people trying to put their two cents in. Fresh off his fame from The Hangover, Zach Galifianakis (Out Cold, Up in the Air) stars opposite Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man, Sherlock Holmes). There's no denying the capabilities of these two funny men, but chemistry was lacking. The few special effects that are used are quite good, but it doesn't make up for the lackluster script. That's not to say that this film isn't fun, but it just isn't hilarious like other Phillips films.

Downey Jr. plays Peter Highman. Pete…

Top 100 Actors

20. Emile Hirsch
I first became aware of Hirsch in 2005 after his fantastic role in the hilarious and surprisingly touching film The Girl Next Next. He reached a wider audience in 2007 with his portrayal of the infamous Christopher McCandless in Into the Wild.
-Into the Wild
-The Girl Next Door
-Lords of Dogtown

19. Seth Rogen
Here's another young actor who got his start on Freaks and Geeks. It took him a few years to get a role that fitted him. It was in the raunchy comedy The 40-Year-Old Virgin that Rogen finally showcased his comedic talent.
-Observe and Report
-Pineapple Express
-The 40-Year-Old Virgin

18. Philip Seymour Hoffman
Oscar-winning director Paul Thomas Anderson helped Hoffman become the actor he is today. His roles in Hard Eight, Boogie Nights and Magnolia helped vault his career in the late 90's. Often used as a supporting actor, Hoffman finally hit it big with his hair-raising portrayal of Truman Capote in 2005's Capote.
-Capote
-Doubt
-Along Came Polly

17. Joaquin Phoen…

Top 100 Actors

40. Jason Segel
Jason got his big break on the terrific television series Freaks and Geeks. A lot of people may recognize him from How I Met Your Mother, but he has finally found the audience he deserves on the big screen. His performance in Forgetting Sarah Marshall (a film he also wrote) was one of the best comedic performances of the decade, without a doubt.
-Forgetting Sarah Marshall
-I Love You, Man
-Knocked Up

39. Mickey Rourke
Mickey's career seemed to be all but done just a few short years ago. But after a nice stretch of films, he busted out his best performance yet in The Wrestler. He seems poised for another good decade.
-The Wrestler
-Sin City
-Man on Fire

38. Jeff Bridges
"The Dude" has had one heck of a career, but some of his best work has come in recent years. Especially in his Oscar-winning performance as fictitious over-the-hill musician Bad Blake in 2009's Crazy Heart. He has a couple highly anticipated December releases coming up in TRON: Legacy and True Gri…