Jason Bourne (2016) Movie Review

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The entirety of Jason Bourne felt like the beginning of one of the previous Bourne movies.

On my 13th birthday, I pleaded to my parents to buy me a pony. They surprisingly rejected my birthday wish (thanks guys).. My other wish was to watch the newest and (at the time) last EVER Bourne movie, The Bourne Ultimatum… For my 22nd, my best friend took myself & the crew out to the resurgence of Bourne with Jason Bourne, one of my most anticipated movies of the year/my life.

I’m not even mad at the final product…
I’m disappointed.


 disclaimer: I won’t be discussing The Bourne Legacy in this review. Any mention of the previous Bourne films refer to the original three (Identity, Supremacy, Ultimatum) starring Matt Damon.

It wasn’t the worst action movie in the world. Far from it. The action set pieces were quite entertaining and honestly, it was just so nice seeing Matt Damon in the role that made me fall in love with him… I don’t mind so much that they focused on Bourne’s past again because those kind of new revelations could be enthralling af and, in the first half of the movie new revelations arose that made me genuinely intrigued, but the entire plot felt very paint-by-numbers and not up to the Bourne standards we are used to. There were one or two twists/turns that felt interesting and a few scenes that were great but overall, the story just really wasn’t that invigorating.

Alicia motherfucking Vikander was the shining light in this dreary hole. She is easily the best part & addition to the franchise. I truly loved her portrayal of the young and naive yet cunning Heather Lee and I believe this woman can do no wrong. Matt Damon gives a relatively neutral performance with nothing too spectacular coming out of him which was a major disappointment since one of my favourite aspects to Bourne in the Trilogy was Damon’s ability to emote with his eye movements… This scene from Supremacy pops up in my mind where he’s completely stone faced yet his eyes gradually look up at the CIA Agent on the phone and he knows he has to conjure up a plan to escape. This was in the second film though, so maybe if another Bourne is made he’ll be able to gauge that performance again if the material is there. Tommy Lee Jones is also in the movie. He’s just there. I honestly believe he gave up on acting like 20 years ago so now he just shows up on set when he’s around and speaks the words on the paper.

As I mentioned, the action set pieces were entertaining but not engaging. There was a ton of shit happening on screen that definitely pleased the eye, but I probably won’t ever feel the need to revisit it again, save for a scene or two. I actually didn’t mind the staple Paul Greengrass shaky cam since I really loved that aspect in the latter two Bourne films. The shaky cam for Jason Bourne was enjoyable, although I could have done without the shaking when characters looked at their phones and that final fight scene… Ooh boy. Our climactic final fight scene was reduced to When Shaky Cam Goes Bad and the editing cuts were everywhere. The dialogue was a bit clunky at certain parts and during a particularly important fight sequence more should have been said! Also the fucking hacking, dude. It was honestly laughable at times.

Any self-respecting movie, TV series, book, alien manifesto, whatever should never use the words “enhance” or “mainframe” in their works when dealing with the hacking.

I don’t want to bring up the previous Bournes too much but another aspect of the Trilogy I admired were the antagonists. The people who wanted to bring Bourne down. What I loved so much about the Trilogy was the fact that these damn people weren’t mustache-twirlers who wanted to see him burn. They had legitimate concerns with Jason Bourne surfacing and were actual characters with flaws and difficulties that were multiplied when faced with dealing with him. There was also a social media/privacy subplot that I actually didn’t mind as much as others, however I honestly think they could’ve cut down virtually every scene about it and only focused on the Technology Convention, leaving more room for Bourne & co.’s development… MILD SPOILERSThere was also a blatant slap in the face that occurred toward the beginning of the movie that was shoehorned in ONLY to create a “gasp! Drama!” moment. The entire fucking movie would’ve had the same outcome had this not occurred and it truly upset me. END MILD SPOILERS.


If you’re a fan of the Bourne Trilogy and are looking for an addition to this beloved franchise that is at the same calibre of the previous three or better, Jason Bourne that is not. If you’re looking for a blockbuster with entertaining action sequences and would like to see where everyone’s favourite CIA asset has been for the past nine years, check out Jason Bourne.

Jason Bourne receives 3/5 Matt Damon heads.

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Bad Moms (2016) Movie Review

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It would be great to have Kathryn Hahn’s character attend any social function I have to go to. Weddings would be 100x more exciting and erotic.

Bad Moms tells the story of one mom, Amy Mitchell played by the way too gorgeous Mila Kunis, who has had enough of doing absolutely everything for her incredibly stupid family including a gourmet breakfast every morning, taking the little shits to school AND doing the homework for one, working at a Facebook for Coffee-esque office, picking the little shits up from school, going grocery shopping and cooking for her literal worthless husband + children. She decides her and two other moms (well one, really… Hahn’s character is technically the spokesperson of the title of the movie and Kristen Bell‘s character is just there) are going to go balls out and Mitchell’s family may actually have to pour some cereal for breakfast for once!

This R-rated comedy (14A here in Canada) is the very definition of a conventional comedy, with the story being virtually predictable from the get go. A few characters are complete caricatures and the plot follows the beat by beat story arc of the redemption of the down-on-her-luck protagonist to a very tee. What I will say about Bad Moms is the performances are fantastic; some may find Hahn’s character obnoxious at times but I indulged in every scene she was in because she was very funny. She and Annie Mumolo‘s characters were by far the superstars of this movie, every time they were on screen they had something hilarious to say and I loved that. Mila Kunis played her role well and I actually really liked the chemistry her, Bell & Hahn had together, you could tell these women enjoyed filming together and that really exudes on screen. Kristen Bell had her moments, a rather funny one involved a sweater, and Christina Applegate as Gwendolyn played the role of the antagonist with some of the funniest lines in the movie pretty well. Really the only problem with characters I had were Jada Pinkett-Smith who was delegated to a “GURRRRRRRRRRL!” role which grew tiresome incredibly quickly and the love interest played by Jay Hernandez, his character literally had nothing to work with except a) look pretty (which he truly nailed) and b) say things that would make women swoon.

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There were a few moments that made me have those belly laughs you crave for in a comedy, particularly a Mom Party that genuinely made me laugh and almost any time it was just the three women together.
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highlight of the movie

Again, Annie Mumolo’s character only had a few minutes of screen time but oh man, the lines she was given and her delivery were spectacular! The soundtrack was also one of my favourites in recent memory, they had a great mix of the fun contemporary stuff you hear on the radio and the ’80s jams you listen to disgustingly loud in your car (I want to know what love is too, Foreigner!) There were occasional moments that made you feel like you were watching a music video and a utilization of slow mo I wasn’t prepared for but it was an interesting tactic to use. There was also a ton of colour in this movie, many shots had a sense of vibrancy to them and it certainly looked nice to watch.

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As I mentioned the plot is thoroughly predictable which isn’t always a bad thing as long as the performances are lively and the story is interesting… My biggest issue I had with this movie is its ending. The final ten minutes or so made me roll my eyes so far in the back of my head you’d have called me Regan MacNeil. There were a few awkward moments in the movie I could forgive because they made me laugh but oh my god I really could’ve done without that ending that tied everything together with an obnoxiously perfect bow tie. It’s perfectly fine if some things are left for ambiguity and the audience must conjure up what will happen next in their lives. Having said all that, I would certainly watch it again on a Saturday afternoon when it pops up on the W network (basically a Canadian Lifetime channel) except I may end up going on my phone for those last few minutes.


If you want to see a comedy that will make you laugh at certain parts and have an hour and a half to kill, check out Bad Moms.

Bad Moms receives 3.5/5 Matt Damon heads.

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Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates (2016) Movie Review

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I would not mind spending an afternoon with Mike and Dave Stangle… Clothing is optional, of course.

This addition to the raunchy comedy genre is complete with the occasional boob shot, immature jokes and an incredibly inappropriate scene with a masseuse. And it was actually quite enjoyable!

Raunchy comedies, when executed correctly, have the ability to make you literally hold onto your stomach from laughing so hard. There are the Greats (There’s Something About Mary, Superbad) and the not so Greats (Bad Dirty Grandpa, funnily enough starring Zac Efron). Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates tells the story of the two well-meaning Stangle Brothers who must find dates in order to attend their sister’s wedding. The movie falls into that better than your average category on the raunch-com spectrum and it is an incredibly enjoyable summer picture. I will say, it did have a couple moments that made me experience that glorious feeling of my 8-pack summer bod developing.

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Let me say, Adam Devine and Efron work incredibly well together. Resounding golf clap to whoever thought to cast them as brothers because their chemistry was fantastic and I truly loved seeing how close their characters were with their sister..

side note: And for all you Torontonians out there, REMEMBER SUGAR FROM THE ZONE? SHE PLAYS THE SISTER!! The second she and her voice came on screen, my friend turned to me and said “… Is that Sugar?!” And I thought she did a great job playing the Stangle sister.

I didn’t feel as much of a connection between the Brothers and their parents (Stephen Root was funny but ooh boy, I love Stephanie Faracy but I think she slept through certain scenes), however there were sporadic moments where I felt that family dynamic. Anna Kendrick played her role as a hilariously sullen yet wild gal fairly well and I liked the words coming out of Aubrey Plaza‘s character… but she had this indistinguishable accent that I don’t think anyone knows wtf it was. I found moments where the dialogue was hysterical and the emotions the actors were conveying hit the nail on the head in terms of delivery; Plaza had those moments, however that accent… It became distracting at times particularly as the movie progressed because I kept wondering “WHAT IS THIS?” In terms of secondary characters, Sam Richardson played Eric brilliantly and his character is one of my favourites in terms of development because he really came into his own by the end of the movie.

The first half of this movie was fantastically hilarious and solid, I thoroughly enjoyed it way more than I thought. They set it up brilliantly AND QUICKLY. Within the first 15 minutes or so the major conflict was set up and we were on our journey of comedy. Complete with all the references to twitter, reddit, facebook and Wendy Williams your heart may desire. I feel like the first half of this movie will be outdated in like three years but I digress. The trailer unfortunately like many gave away one of the major gags/reveals that I wish they wouldn’t have shown. The fast-pacedness of the movie kind of meandered a bit following the climax but the final few acts made up for that slowness because I was laughing and enjoying everything on screen during the final scenes.

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They don’t get riled up, guys

A nitpick though that I cannot forgive this movie for is the blatantly obvious audio/visual dubs. Like holy shit, man. One or two times I can forgive but there were so many instances when the camera would cut behind Dave (Zac Efron) and a random piece of dialogue would just spew out that you know was not what he said at all. IIRC, during a scene between Plaza/Devine’s respective characters, the camera lingered on Tatianna (Plaza)’s face as Mike (Devine) said something and his mouth movements were not matching up at all with what we were hearing.

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If you’re looking for a fun and silly raunchy summer picture and want a sprinkle of attractiveness to go with your comedy, check out Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates.

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates receives 3.5/5 Matt Damon heads.

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Finding Dory (2016) Movie Review

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At its core, Finding Dory is basically Disney/Pixar’s version of Memento. 

I may be one of five other people on the planet who has no recollection of Finding Dory’s predecessor, Finding Nemo, since I saw it only once in third or fourth grade more than a decade ago. So really, I had no expectations going into it save for the already predetermined expectations I have with any Disney/Pixar combination. The result was an enjoyable watch both older individuals and young’uns will appreciate.

Finding Dory takes the audience on a journey as we rejoin the regal blue tang memory loss-ridden fish, Dory, as she attempts to find her family she lost years ago. With it being a sequel releasing 13 years since Nemo, there are a few cameos from its predecessor that appeared to the delight of the audience that surrounded me at the theatre.

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Becky teaming up with this guy would be my vote for a third movie

There are a ton of memorable secondary characters in this movie that made me crack up way more than I anticipated. One of them being Becky With the Red Eye. Idris Elba AKA the World’s Most Perfect Man and Dominic West AKA JIMMY F’ING McNULTY lend their beautiful voice talents to a pair of sea lions who may appear to be lazy creatures that just lie around their rock all day, but oh there is so much more to them. I could tell. They would do terrific on The Wire. 

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The key player to this is obviously Ellen DeGeneres‘ Dory and she does a terrific job portraying both the frustration her character experiences but also the immense joy and wonderment she exudes as well. Again, the secondary characters such as Bailey, voiced by Ty Burrell, Hank (Ed O’Neill) and Destiny (Kaitlin Olson) are fantastic in this movie and as mentioned, there was a little loon named Becky that stole my heart.

Finding Dory’s animation is also beautiful, the vastness of the ocean and its minor features are a joy for the eyes to see, although there weren’t any specific moments that made my jaw drop from how alluring the animation was. I adore the ocean, however and appreciate any work that delves into that captivating world… Except the Jaws that had Michael Caine in it. That wasn’t very good.

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I appreciate the message Finding Dory attempted to convey with learning to not allow one’s disabilities to hinder themselves and I think they did a wonderful job with it, however, and this honestly is just the grumpy old man I have in me, the message was beat over your head… Multiple times… And then once more just for clarity.
Honestly though, for the people that run out to buy animals and hold them in captivity after watching a movie such as this or Nemo, when that is literally the #1 thing respectively both movies are saying DON’T DO, YOU DINGBATS, you wonder a bit where the brains are of those Can-I-Speak-To-Your-Manager individuals.

That is not what Sigourney Weaver would want.


If you’re looking for a fun animated movie with hysterical characters and a message behind it to teach kids not to be jerks, check out Finding Dory.

Finding Dory receives 3.5/5 Matt Damon heads.

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Captain America: Civil War (2016) Movie Review

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Is it wrong of me to think everything could have easily been solved if all teams came together and had a reasonable debate a la 12 Angry Men about their issues??

So I will admit that I am not an insanely huge fan of the superhero/comic book genre. I like certain additions to the MC and DCCU (the first Avengers & Ant-Man were fun, BvS was ehhhh), I despise certain additions to the superhero genre in general (I consider The Amazing Spiderman to be an abomination), overall I will watch whatever comes out but I certainly do not fawn over them. The Russo Brothers‘ second addition to the Captain America trilogy and MCU is an incredibly action-packed and entertaining blockbuster that I am happy I watched.

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Many concur that the action scenes in this movie are phenonmenal, particularly that Airport Scene. Read/watch whatever you hear about that scene, it will live up to your expectations by showcasing every member’s abilities brilliantly with dashes of humour sprinkled in that, unlike Age of Ultron which falls slightly into the latter of my superhero genre additions, work to add to the experience of the movie rather than hinder it (in my humble opinion). Personally I found the characterization of mostly everyone to be wonderful, and as my friend Diego of the Lazy Sunday Movie Blog eloquently put it in his reviewCivil War is “a whole lot better than some other super hero movie, which had to juggle less characters and had tons of material to use but still managed to ruin the story.” This is something I appreciated because by the end of it, I felt a connection with a majority of the characters, and there are a ton of characters. Chris Evans‘ Captain America and Robert Downey Jr.‘s Tony Stark both had justifiable reasoning in their beliefs, although one weaker link I found was Sebastian Stan as Bucky/The Winter Soldier..

Look, I get it. Shit is tough. Revelations are made in this movie I don’t wish to spoil. But Bucky says something to Tony toward the end of the movie that made me go “why would you say that??” And Stan’s performance is… okay. Of every performance, Stan’s was my least favourite. I personally thought his dead eyes felt more like a moody goth circa 2003 than a domineering figure and since like 90% of this movie hinges on the character of the Winter Soldier, I wanted to have some sense of struggle or hurt this guy was feeling. Instead I honestly thought the world would’ve been better without him… Sorry Cap. You’re still incredibly beautiful

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I mean… really…

You know who I loved? Paul Bettany as Vision.. I think he is my favourite character in the Avengers lore. I found his chemistry with Elizabeth Olsen really great and I want to see more of that hulking, beautifully synthetic man.

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Civil War suffers from Constant Weird Extreme Close Up Syndrome. Many scenes wherein the plot was attempting to be developed felt incredibly stagnant at times and although the action sequences were fantastic, there were times where I thought “PLEASE ZOOM OUT! I DON’T NEED TO SEE THE LUSCIOUS MANE OF SO AND SO!”

How were the Black Panther and Spiderman introductions?
I mean this with all sincerity, Chadwick Boseman‘s Black Panther and Tom Holland as our new Spiderman were two of my favourite aspects of Civil War. Black Panther had a presence to him and I was intrigued by this guy, I wanted to know more. Spiderman… Oh boy. This property is finally in the right hands, that is all I will say about that.


If you’re looking for a welcome addition to the MCU and want to see two heavyweight superheroes you know and love go hard at it, check out Captain America: Civil War. If you’ll excuse me, I need to go ogle that Chris Evans gif for another hour or ten.
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Captain America: Civil War receives 4/5 Matt Damon heads

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s/o: LazySundayMovies

The Huntsman: Winter’s War (2016) Movie Review

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Chris Hemsworth, Jessica Chastain, Emily Blunt and Charlize Theron walk into a movie, the result of that? An incredibly sub par picture


The second unit director & visual effects supervisor of the first Snow White and the Huntsman (2012) movie, Cedric Nicolas-Troyan, helms this prequel/sequel to the surprising 2012 hit. I will say, this was a pretty looking movie and I firmly hold the belief that Chris Hemsworth can charm the milk out of chocolate… That’s pretty much all I can say for it. The performances of the aforementioned three ridiculously talented actresses are completely wasted in The Huntsman 2/1. Blunt, Theron and Chastain are some of the greatest working actresses today, with Jessica Chastain being one of my own personal favourites… I hate to say it but these performances were phoned in entirely and it is a shame that these four weren’t starring in a completely different movie because I think that would’ve been way better than what we got.

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“Why are we in this?” “… I’m saving up for Lawless 2

As mentioned, it is a nice looking movie and I thoroughly enjoyed the Frozen-esque VFX aspect to it, frankly Elsa should’ve been freezing shit up as much as Freya was. Hemsworth and Chastain had tremendous chemistry together and I hope they work together in the future because I can’t imagine how fantastic they would be together in a movie that isn’t this one. Charlize Theron was fine but you can tell she is only this because she probably owed director Troyan a favour and Emily Blunt… Ooooooooh wee the Redmayne Ascending syndrome struck her.

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It is not particularly engaging, it drones on quite a bit but I did appreciate the motivation behind Freya’s anger. It’s really stupid but I appreciate it. Also I’m certain I wasn’t the only one that saw the final outcome between the sisters coming from a mile away, right? There are dwarves too that served as comic relief and they made me laugh a few times. It really is an incredibly underwhelming movie and one of those movies where you will catch the tail end of it when it’s on the Space channel or something.


If you’re looking for a ridiculously entertaining take on the fantasy genre, this probably isn’t the movie for you. If you’re a fan of the original Snow White and the Huntsman and want to see Chris Hemsworth be charismatic and charming (and really, who doesn’t?), check out The Huntsman: War on Mirrors.


The Huntsman receives 2.5/5 Matt Damon heads

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The Witch (2016) Movie Review

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[8]

If I have to sum up this movie in one word, it would be “unnerving.”


Robert Eggers’ directorial debut of an excommunicated 17th Century Puritan family is a welcome throwback to horror films of the past that focused moreso on atmosphere and suspense rather than jump scares and all those darn jump scares. The feeling I had throughout The Witch was that of pure anxiety because of the environment Eggers managed to create.

The first act and final ten minutes or so of this film had me at the literal edge of my seat. I found myself with my feet planted straight on the ground rather than the usual position I’m in of cross-leggedness. The fear of the unknown was present throughout and the acting was actually incredible, considering more than half of the cast consists of humans under the age of 20. Anya Taylor-Joy was particularly a standout as Thomasin (it’s not a coincidence she has the word ‘sin’ in her name) and it was nice seeing Lady Lysa (Kate Dickie) play a character she’s not really familiar with: a complete loon.

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“I literally hate everything about you, daughter of mine”

I originally thought I would become fatigued watching children speak Shakespearean-style English, however they were phenomenal and I actually believed I was watching a family from the 1800’s attempting to explain just what the ever living fuck was going on with them.

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Rabbits… Never a good sign

Attempting to decipher exactly what was going on was a bit of a task. There were more than a couple of times I found myself asking “wait… what?” The intrigue of wanting to know what was going to happen was certainly there, however I believe if there was just a bit more explanation I think I would’ve liked the overall plot more… I do have to give major props to any horror film that strives to scare the audience psychologically rather than noisily/annoyingly so the actual aesthetic and tone of the film had me hooked. Honestly if horror focuses more on channeling that of The Babadook, The Conjuring and The Witch rather than the Paranormal Activity 70 or Ouija, we will be in for some genuine scares. PLEASE FILMMAKERS, STRIVE FOR GREATNESS.


If you’re looking for a movie that is a bit tedious of a watch, however will give you a sense of dread throughout and actually care about what will happen to the characters in a horror movie, check out The VVitch. That’s right. I did the VV thing.


The Witch receives 3.5/5 Matt Damon heads

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