Category Archives: Movie Review

Zach’s Zany Movie Reviews: THE FATE OF THE FURIOUS

In a quick quarter mile of a sentence: if you’ve loved Fast Five and forward, you are going to love THE FATE OF THE FURIOUS (should’ve been title THE F8 OF THE FURIOUS, but whatever). The movie has incredible non-realistic yet kind of realistic action, funny comic-relief, a decent story, a much more utilized Jason Statham, a great villain in Charlize Theron, and plenty of  the word”family” to go around.

To be a little controversial, I even thought it was better than Furious 7. Yes, even with that Paul Walker tribute at the end. Out of all the fresh new ones (Fast Five forward), I always thought Furious 7 was good but a little incomplete and probably my least favorite of the revamped installment of the series. Not to diss on Paul Walker, because he is definitely missed in this installment, but with the last film, it bothered me when I could completely tell that he hardly filmed any scenes for the movie, and more than 50% of it was CGI or body doubles and edited in an awkward way to try and get people not to be able to tell it wasn’t him. Just felt like it was scrapped together really quickly when they probably should’ve taken a little bit more time to figure out how to write around his death.

The only weird edited thing this has is trying to keep Vin and Dwayne away from each other off set because of their ‘beef.’ Anyway, back to the movie. The only way you are going to love this film like I did is if you completely turn off your brain and just let whatever happen happen. Previous bad guy’s turning good even though they killed someone. Okay, I’ll bite (I completely still think that Han isn’t really dead). A sub missile skimming the ice and then Dwayne Johnson being able to steer it with his foot into a bad guy’s vehicle? Sure, why the hell not? A bunch of cars being hacked into all at once, falling out of buildings and also being able to drive side by side with computerized guidance systems? It wasn’t realistic but it sure was fucking awesome! This movie is completely Jeremy and outside vents in Divergent if he’s reading this. Jeremy, this movie would drive you nuts.

And why Dom is helping Cipher (Charlize Theron) and turns bad? I won’t ruin it here but it was not what I thought it would be. I just assumed she had Brian O’Connor held hostage off screen, but what they ended up doing surprised even me and wants to give screenwriter Chris Morgan a little more credit than I’ve given him.

I won’t ruin anymore of the actions scenes, but every single one of them is ingenious and very exciting. The film, even though they show a lot in the trailer, still has many twists, turns, cameos, and cool surprises. While new characters played by Scott Eastwood are okay but maybe will be fleshed out more later, returning characters like Kurt Russell make the movie cooler and more refreshing. The real two stars of the film are Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham. Their chemistry in this film is incredible, with Johnson getting the most screentime he has gotten in a Furious film, and Jason Statham getting to shine in this film when he should’ve shined in the last one as well but was very underused. A sequence with him on a plane is one of the highlights of the film.

There are some awkward unneeded parts, like Dwayne Johnson at his girls’ soccer game, they probably could’ve bene cut out, but all in all I really loved and enjoyed this film. Basically, if you can’t stand these films, this one won’t change your mind, but if you love them like I have, this one just keeps the franchise engine running full throttle without braking.

Ranking of Films:

Fast Five

Fast & Furious 6

The Fate of the Furious

Furious 7

The Fast and The Furious

Fast & Furious

The Fast & Furious: Tokyo Drift

2 Fast 2 Furious

Karate Kid (the new one)

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Country Set in: China
Summary: Work causes a single mother to move to China with her young son; in his new home, the boy embraces kung fu, taught to him by a master.

I am a fan of this series, I have one friend who refused to watch this movie, but I have always had an obsession and deep desire to go to China. Beautiful landscapes, ancient cultures, giants temples…. I really can’t explain how much I want to go to China. I am really hoping to get to China in the next couple of years but for now I will have to settle with films and books.

True story when this film came out I was scheduled to spend 17 days in China. I cancelled. It is by far my biggest regret in life. I did not go and it is ok to call me an idiot over that decision.

I found this movie fascinating and very cute. I could not imagine having my life up rooted and moved to such an exotic and different country at a young age. As an adult I would find that exciting but as a child I am sure it is overwhelming.

I found myself in love with this story, I could not stop watching. I wasn’t sure if it was really the story or my deep desire to go to China. It runs deep and still to this day I have no clue why I backed out of my trip of a lifetime.

Scene after scene my wanderlust for China was fueled and I can’t wait to finally experience my own China story.

I know the original Karate Kid has fueled a lot of people to not see this film but I urge you to watch it if you have not already, because it is giant insight to a country that had their borders closed for years, and still has a magical quality to it.

Go watch it now and imagine what your Chinese adventure would be like.

Eat Pray Love

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Set in: Italy, India and Indonesia
Summary: At a crossroads in her life, Liz Gilbert (Julia Roberts) travels to Italy, India and Bali to discover meaning and happiness in this inspiring true story, based on the best-selling book.

I read the book prior to watching the movie. I liked the book a lot, but I did love the movie. I am a visual person and seeing Italy, India AND Indonesia is way better than reading about them. I just can’t wait until I physically get to experience all three.

One of the things that made this movie fantastic is that it is a true story, Elizabeth Gilbert said it F it and took off to find herself in three countries that challenged her in different ways. I have some serious respect for anyone that does that.

Doing just that is a huge dream for me and believe me someday I will do just that but not this year, this year for some stupid reason I decided to get “checked” out health wise… so dumb but hey at least I will be able to finally see when I go to Italy.

What I loved about this movie (and the book essentially) is that each destination brought new challenges and perseverance. Plus before I watched this movie Indian terrified me and I never had any desire to go to India. Now I will go and can’t wait to go.

This is another movie with bad reviews but it is still a great movie to inspire wanderlust, or watch from home when you are totally depressed you can’t go anywhere.

Did you like Eat, Pray, Love?

Letters to Juliet

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Country Set in: Italy

Summary: When aspiring magazine writer Sophia Marcus and would-be resaturanteur Victor fly from New York to Italy for a vacation, the stage seems set for some much-needed romance in their relationship – especially since their destination is the city of Verona, home of the star-crossed lover Juliet Capulet of Romeo & Juliet fame. But Victor is far more interested in finding suppliers for his future restaurant than in wooing Sophia, who ends up getting a vicarious romantic fix from an unlikely source; she jions a group of volunteers who respond to letters that pour into Verona from around the world – letters to Juliet seeking advice about love. One such letter that Sophia responds to dates back to 1951 and came from one Claire Smith, an Englishwoman who fell in love with a young Italian man in her youth but let the opportunity slip away. To Sophia’s surprise, her letter inspires Claire, now a grandmother, to travel to Verona in search of her long-lost love – accompanied by her grandson Charlie. With Victor wrapped up in his culinary quest, Sophia, Charlie and Claire scour the beautiful Italian countryside in search of Claire’s long-lost love. In the process, romance blossoms in unexpected ways, eventually facing Sophia with the very advice she wrote in her letter to Claire. Will she find the courage to seize love or – like Claire – spend a lifetime regretting the road not taken?

Lately there are a few countries I am obsessing over. China, France, England and Italy. I am hoping to spend two weeks in Naples next year (fingers crossed my eye surgery goes according to plan) so I am finding myself trying to get my hands on any movie or book that I can to get myself in the mood to visit.  Lucky for me there is a lot of books and movies set in Italy.  So clearly I am not the only one that lusts over this beautiful destination.

I decided to go ahead and re-watch Letters to Juliet and believe me I was not disappointed. I am not the warm fuzzy romantic type but I would be a liar if I didn’t say this story didn’t give me the warm fuzzies.  If I ever make it to Verona, I am going to have to do the whole Romeo and Juliet thing, who cares if those two were morons it is a tragic love story, and a firm reminder that hey even if you love life sucks, it could be worse ;:

Anyway I digress, there is just something to be said about finding your long lost love after 50 years.  It is a story that makes headlines often and there is a reason for it.  It shows that love conquers all even time.

Or hell, maybe it was the beautiful Tuscan back ground.  Yeah, lets go with that.

The overall ratings on this movie were poor but I enjoyed it, and I think anyone that wants to see the beautiful Italian backdrop without getting on plane will enjoy this romantic comedy.

Plus the guy that plays Charlie is a cuties, and Amanda is so freaking cute.  I really hope I get the chance to meet her someday.

What Italian movie should I watch next?