Posts Tagged ‘ben stiller’

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Madagascar 3 (2012)

June 30, 2012

Starring: Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, Jada Pinkett-Smith, David Schwimmer, Sacha Baron Cohen, Bryan Cranston, Jessica Chastain, Martin Short
Director: Eric Darnell, Tom McGrath (Madagascar, Madagascar 2, Megamind)

Quick Thoughts: I skipped the first two installments in this series but was still able to jump right in with this story and felt like I already knew who these characters were. The story find the animals wishing to return to the Central Park zoo after a brief stay in Africa, but I in their attempt to return home they find themselves stuck on a train with a traveling circus and a new cast of animals to share the limelight with. Martin Short and Frances McDormand are perfectly cast in their new roles, both providing plenty of comedy.

Viewings: 1
Replay Value: Not exactly something I’d want to own and watch repeatedly, but I’ve clearly overlooked its predecessors.
Sequel Potential: These movies keep doing well enough to warrant further sequels but at some point it’s going to be difficult to to continue moving this story forward. Spin offs might be the way to go as the penguins already have their own T.V. show.
Oscar Potential: A notch below Pixar’s Brave, which means it should probably whiff on a Best Animated Feature nomination.
Nudity: N/A
Grade: 6/10 (Recommended)
RottenTomatoes Scores: Critics: 76% Audience: 81%
IMDB Rating: 7.2/10
Recommendation: A solid family film that is geared toward the kids, but still enjoyable for adults, and a pretty remarkable film for a third installment.

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Little Fockers (2010)

May 30, 2011

Starring: Ben Stiller, Robert De Nero, Teri Polo, Owen Wilson, Dustin Hoffman, Barbara Streissand, Blythe Danner, Jessica Alba
Director: Paul Weitz (About A Boy, American Pie)

Quick Thoughts: The first sequel was not only unnecessary, it was also forgettable. Little Fockers doesn’t suffer the same fate, but unfortunately that’s not for good reason as it will be remembered for being one of the worst comedies of the past decade. I’m not going to spend time talking about the absurd plot to this film–and why should I? It’s not like the filmmakers put any serious thought into the script themselves. Screenwriter John Hamburg is a frequent collaborator with star Ben Stiller, but it’s obvious that Hamburg is much more talented at coming up with original stories (Meet The Parents, I Love You, Man) than continuing previous ones. Little Fockers is star studded with several A-Listers, but the film is terrible and offers very few genuine laughs. I’d recommend for the cast to quit while they’re ahead, but it’s already too late for that and at this point all we can hope for is that Hollywood will put this franchise out of its misery before the sequels put such a powerful taint on the series that we forget how truly fantastic the original was.

Viewings: 1
Replay Value: Zero.
Sequel Potential: Meet The Fockers grossed $280 million in the U.S. and even though business fell off dramatically for Little Fockers, at $148 million, it’s still a box office hit. It was universally destroyed by critics though, so it’s quite possible that the stars of the series will realize it’s time to give it up.
Oscar Potential: None
Nudity: None
Grade: 3/10 (Skip It)
RottenTomatoes Scores: Critics: 9% Audience: 41%
IMDB Rating: 5.3/10
Recommendation: Little Fockers is borderline unwatchable. It’s a comedy that’s not particularly funny and a great barometer for judging someone’s taste in movies. Ask someone enthusiastically: “Have you seen Little Fockers yet?” If they respond with: “Yeah! It was really funny.” then you know never to take their opinion on films seriously again. One of the worst movies of the year, for sure.