My 10 Takeaways From See Fifty Shades of Grey

So I went and saw Fifty Shades of Grey over the weekend. All the hype from the movie was hard to resist taking myself to the theaters and seeing it for myself. I do warn all my readers that I have not read the book, so don’t shoot me for liking or not liking something in the movie that was or wasn’t in the book. But after all that here are my 10 takeaways from seeing Fifty Shades of Grey.

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Synopsis: Literature student Anastasia Steele’s life changes forever when she meets handsome, yet tormented, billionaire Christian Grey.

This review Contain Spoilers

1 – I really feel they missed the boat on the casting of Christian. While I had never read the books I have heard a lot about them and heard a bunch about this “Christian” guy. He is this hot-shot rich guy that just woman go crazy over, well this guy didn’t do that for me.

2 – I was fond of the Dakota Johnson casting though. While she wasn’t overly drop dead gorgeous, she fit the role of innocent girl Anastasia. I looked at her IMDB page and really didn’t know she was in as many movies as it stated but this was her first “big time” role in a movie. I would also like to applaud her for having the “balls” to be naked for like 75% of the film.

3 – Seattle is a beautiful city.

4 – The rest of the cast really didn’t matter. It was all about Christian and Anastasia. This was a key to me in making this movie enjoyable. I didn’t have to buy into the other characters, they were selling me on the vocal point of the story and I enjoyed that.

5 – You can’t help but laugh at certain parts of the movie. Certain things about the movie were funny to me. I had no problem with the contract of confidentially but the sex contract really made me laugh.

6 – The scene where Anastasia dissects Christians contract in this very low lite room, HOW COULD THEY SEE WHAT WAS ON THE PAPER? It was way too dark in that room to see any lighting at all. (Side note: I do love how Anastasia worked up Christian in this scene, just to walk out on him.

7 – Chemistry between Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan was pretty good. You felt it from there first scene and throughout the movie. They worked well together. This is very vital in a movie based on the two main characters.

8 – Placement of the music/the score was fantastic. They used the songs at the perfect time, I loved the change they brought to Beyoncé’s Crazy in Love mix they had in the film. It was a harder version of the song that really fit perfect in the film.

9 – A lot less sex in the movie than I thought which really shocked me. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I thought for sure there would be more than what happened in the movie.

10 – The movie for me was all about building the background story for Christian and Anastasia. It was a decent build and my first thought walking out of the theater was they set this whole thing up to make the 2nd one. I know there are 3 books and that’s the purpose but as a person never have read the books I knew as soon as it ended, another was to follow.

Overall Review

3 out of 5 Stars 

This will never go down as a great movie but it was very enjoyable. While at times I couldn’t help but chuckle at certain things, I couldn’t help but find myself invested in the main characters. It was a well-directed, well shot and the score was fantastic. I bought into the movie and that to me is a big reason I liked it.

Fifty Shades of Grey is Rated-R for strong sexual content including dialogue, some unusual behavior and graphic nudity, and for language.

In theaters now

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Hercules Review

So I went to the movies and saw Hercules starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. I had some high expectations because I thought the trailer was rather well done. So here is my review of the film.

Follow me over on Twitter @rickygangster

Life Itself Review

I checked out the Documentary “Life Itself” – The story of one of the biggest fixtures in movies Roger Ebert.

Check out my review and my comments below.

This was Directed by Steve James and he just took us on an amazing venture from the beginning of Ebert’s life to the very last days of his life.

Hearing stories from his wife Chaz Ebert, his battles with Gene Siskel, listening to how Martin Scoresese talk about how Ebert reviewed his films or just watching him as he was so inspirational during his final months and still beating on like nothing was wrong.

This is a must see documentary by not only film junkies like myself but for those who just even heard the name Roger Ebert.

Edge of Tomorrow Review

So I took the time to go see Edge of Tomorrow last night. I wasn’t exactly jumping for joy when I saw the trailer; I just was really intrigued in seeing it and thought it had some real potential. Tom Cruise has been solid in his last few films Oblivion, Jack Reacher (fantastic movie) and Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol. After seeing it, I will give you the Good and the Bad of the movie.

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An officer finds himself caught in a time loop in a ware with an alien race. His skills increase as he face the same brutal combat scenarios, and his union with a Special Forces warrior gets him closer and closer to defeating the enemy.

Spoilers may follow, so be cautious.

The Good –

Tom Cruise – Cruise plays Bill Cage a PR executive with a witty tongue and kind of arrogant guy. He stays in the spotlight but far away from the front line as possible. I enjoyed how the introduction of Cruise’s character transformed throughout the film. Starting as a scared and clueless guy on the front line, which after time he learned progressed and just started kicking some serious ass.

The movie started off with some classic things with Cage (Cruise) as he was slowly trying to figure out what the hell was going on, he of course would “die” and come back to life. One of my favorites was near the beginning he would roll out of PT and goes under a Jeep, well in his first attempt at said venture he rolled under and got run over by the car. I literally couldn’t stop laughing, it was just hilarious.

Another thing I enjoyed is the repetitive (on purpose of course) banter between Master Sergeant Farell (Bill Paxton) and Cage (Cruise). As each time would go back and have to replay the scene, Cage would increasingly become a little more obnoxious and just pick at Farell (Paxton). It really made for some great humor, which was never over the top like it can be in films these days. It didn’t “try” too hard to shove the comedy down your throat, they just let it play its course and it happened when it did.

Emily Blunt – She plays Special Forces legend Rita Vratski, a just kick ass chick in a robot suit. First I want to throw it out there, I never realized how hot she was until I saw this film. Perfect fit for this role, believable bad ass with some sure-fire good looks. But off that and onto her character, only one thing I didn’t like about her character early on and I’ll hit on that in the Bad section but Blunt was fantastic and the chemistry between her and Cruise was there.

Supporting Cast – Paxton obviously brought some funny scenes to the movie, Brendan Gleeson is still killing on the screen so many years later. The group of people who played the characters that help lead to the final take down were well casted and all provided a good little punch to the film.

Doug Liman – Has an impressive list of movies he has directed, From Swingers to Bourne Identity to Mr. and Mrs. Smith, which I enjoyed all 3 movies. So knowing he has done such a great job, I knew we could be in for a real treat here and he did not disappoint. Very well-directed film from start to finish, taking two characters and with this script having to watch them be repetitive and keep the interest of a movie goer was a hard task and I feel he did a great job of pulling it off. While Cage (Cruise) kept going back and repeating after every death, he made sure to keep it interesting every time he went back, whether it was with some great witty humor or when it came down to Cages character getting pissed off and acting like a man on a mission, it worked for me.

The Cinematography in the film was fantastic, some great visuals throughout the film and another thing that really stood out to me was the films Score. That was absolutely fantastic and to me a very important key to an action flick. I have to feel the Score to really dig into a good action flick and they did a great job of incorporating it in this movie.

The Bad –

While I understood when they introduced Rita Vratski they made her look somewhat like a bad ass and then they killed her. Obviously done for perfect reasoning, but you kind of built her character as the bad ass super robot Legend and her first appearance she was only a little impressive and died. I wish she would’ve kicked a little more ass at the beginning before we had to kill her off would’ve made a little more sense to me.

Not nitpicking the film at all but I would say around the 45-50 minute part of the film it was a little slow, while only for about 10 minutes, it was kind of on cruise control.

The Final Verdict

*** ½ out of 5 stars

Look I really don’t care what anyone says about Tom Cruise; dude is a star and shows it in this film. People knock this guy down so many times and he fires back with good film after good film. He and Blunt made the perfect pair in this film and did a great job in both their roles. Doug Liman brought us a fun action packed film that I think is going to get lost in the summer shuffle and that’s quite disappointing as this film is fantastic.

Edge of Tomorrow is in theaters now

Neighbors Movie Review

So I had the opportunity to see a Screener of Neighbors, which is something I was very pleased to get ahold of as I have wanted to see the film ever since I saw the first trailer. I had high hopes going in and was really hoping that we had our first big time funny comedy to kick off the summer season. So after seeing the movie, I will give you the Good, The Bad and the Ugly of the film.

Again thank you to @Cinemit for the passes.

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A couple with a newborn baby face unexpected difficulties after they are forced to live next to a fraternity house.

The Good

Hilarious – The movie was just funny from start to finish. Some classic one-liners that will be spoken about a ton after you see the movie. From what you see in the trailer is exactly what you get in the movie. Just raunchy R rated comedy. The air bag scenes I watched 50 times in the trailer and laughed and when I saw it in the movie I laughed even harder. The whole entire cast was great.

The pairing of Seth Rogen & Rose Byrne – They play Mac & Kelly Radner a middle age couple with a new-born baby. The instant you saw these two on the screen you knew they had something special going on. You could see the chemistry and instant laughter that will ensue when the movie started. The baby in the picture of course brought another element to the picture that would really bring another funny element to the movie. These two killed it as a pair.

Seth Rogen – Lets just throw it out there that this guy is on another planet of funny during his last two films now. Last year’s This is the End was one of the funniest movies I have ever seen. So following that up was going to be a bit hard to be honest and well he brought his A game to this movie as well. He is just laugh out loud funny in this. You couldn’t help but slide down into your chair in laughter after certain scenes (Including a scene where he and Efron are fighting and he bounces on a trampoline to throw an elbow and he hits a ceiling fan). The chemistry he and Rose Byrne showed in this film was killer. They were the perfect pair for this movie.

Rogen is just so good at what he does, the little things just add up.

Speaking of Rose Byrne (Kelly) she was fantastic. She has previously played in a few movies that I have really enjoyed (The Internship, Get Him to the Greek and Place Beyond the Pines) but I wasn’t sure how she and Rogen would do together in this film. But she was in there with the big boys and she knocked it out of the park and held her own. She was just funny. Nothing else that really can be said about it.

Zac Efron – Let me go ahead and put it out there that this is one of the future mega stars in the movie industry. He is good and after watching That Awkward Moment the other day and now this, he is going to be money for years to come.

He played Teddy Sanders the president of the fraternity that moves in next door to Mac & Kelly. They couldn’t have casted a better person for the role. His exchanges with Rogen were some great stuff. There is one scene that really stuck out for me and that’s based around the scene when Rogen called the cops on Teddy and the fraternity. You’ll understand when you see it.

Dave Franco – Franco played Pete opposite of Teddy Sanders (Efron) as the VP of the fraternity. Look this guy is one of the most underrated actors in Hollywood. He like Efron has a bright future in front of me. Franco wasn’t actually in this as long as I would’ve hoped but when he was in it, he was on. His De Niro impression as Jack Byrnes from Meet the Parents/Fockers was amazing.

Supporting Cast was fantastic as well. Anywhere from Christopher Mintz-Plasse to Lisa Kudrow to Craig Roberts as Assjuice they all brought some good stuff to this movie.

The Bad

One thing about Seth Rogen his go to is “smoking pot” in his comedies. While I don’t hate it at all just the act is going to start wearing thin soon.

Andrew Cohen & Brendan O’Brien – This is definitely not a big complaint as they wrote a really funny film but there were some serious plot questions throughout the film. Again I understand that this is a comedy and sometimes the plot can fly off the handle, which is okay. I just think they could’ve tidy up the film a little better.

The Ugly

Nothing

Overall Thoughts

4 out of 5 stars

This really would’ve been the perfect comedy without the plot holes but that didn’t damage the overall movie for me too much. It had so many funny moments in it that it made up for the holes. It is really nice to see Rogen back to his old ways of being funny, Bryne really was the star of the show and Efron really showed up for this. The supporting cast as well was amazing. Very fun time at the movies and would recommend a theater visit for this.

Neighbors is in theaters Friday

The 1st Annual Sports Script Oscar Nominations

The Oscar season is right around the corner which is easily one of my favorite times of the year. I like reflecting on the movies from the years past and comparing the movies nominated to what I liked. I always watch the movie nominated no matter what type of movie it is or if it even looks interesting to me. I do this every year but this will be my 1st annual The Sports Script Oscar picks. January 14th is the day the nominations are announced and today I will give you who I think should get the nominations as well around March the 2nd (before the award show) I will give you my picks on who I think will win that were actually nominated. So here we go.

*updated 01/06/13 after watching Dallas Buyers Club*

The 1st Annual the Sports Script Oscar Picks

Best Picture

Captain Phillips
The Wolf of Wall Street
Saving Mr. Banks
12 Years a Slave
Prisoners
American Hustle
Out of the Furnace
Dallas Buyers Club

Best Director

Martin Scorsese – The Wolf of Wall Street
Paul Greengrass – Captain Phillips
Steve McQueen – 12 Years a Slave
David O. Russell – American Hustle
Scott Cooper – Out of the Furnace

Best Actor

Tom Hanks – Captain Phillips
Chiwetel Ejiofor – 12 Years a Slave
Leonardo DiCaprio – The Wolf of Wall Street
Christian Bale – American Hustle
Hugh Jackman – Prisoners

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett – Jasmine
Sandra Bullock – Gravity
Emma Thompson – Saving Mr. Banks
Carey Mulligan – The Great Gatsby

Best Supporting Actress

Jennifer Lawrence – American Hustle
Lupita Nyongo – 12 Years a Slave
Octavia Spencer – Fruitvale Station
Oprah Winfrey – The Butler
Jennifer Garner – Dallas Buyers Club

Best Supporting Actor

Barkhad Abdi – Captain Phillips
Tom Hanks – Saving Mr. Banks
Bradley Cooper – American Hustle
Daniel Bruhl – Rush
Woody Harrelson – Out of the Furnace

Original Screen Play

Fruitvale Station
American Hustle
Saving Mr. Banks
Gravity
Her

Best Adapted Screenplay

The Wolf of Wall Street
Captain Phillips
Rush
12 Years a Slave

Best Score

The Great Gatsby
Gravity
Rush
Captain Phillips
12 Years a Slave

Best Song

Young and Beautiful – The Great Gatsby
Love is Blindness – The Great Gatsby
Atlas – The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
Let It Go – Frozen

Best Cinematography

Gravity
12 Years a Slave
Rush
Captain Phillips
Prisoners

Best Visual Effects

Pacific Rim
Gravity
World War Z
The Lone Ranger
Iron Man 3
Thor: The Dark World

Best Make Up and Hairstyling

American Hustle
The Great Gatsby
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
The Lone Ranger
Dallas Buyers Club

Best Costume Design

The Great Gatsby
American Hustle
Oz the Great and Powerful
The Wolf of Wall Street
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

There you have it my 2014 Oscar picks, make sure to watch the Oscar Nomination show on January 14th and check out my latest piece here at the Sports Script where I review every movie I saw in 2013.

Disagree? Agree? Movie I am missing? Hit me up on twitter @rickygangster and let me know.

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A Review of All the Movies I saw in 2013

I am a huge movie goer and actually at the theater quite often. Whether I am on lunch break at work or on a vacation, I am always trying to make it to the cinema. 2013 was a great year for movies and a ton of movie came out that were definitely worth going and seeing. I saw almost 80 films that came out in 2013 and still have a list of the movies that I haven’t seen yet and will update the list as I do. Below I will list in no particular order of my top 10 movies of the year, my top 5 performances of the year and I will give you a chart with what movies I saw and a little one sentence review of it and how many stars I gave the film.

My Top 10 Movies of 2013 (In no particular order)This was a lot harder to make a list of 10 than I thought it would be.

Prisoners
This is the End
Olympus has Fallen
The Great Gatsby
Now You See Me
You’re Next
Captain Phillips
The Wolf of Wall Street
American Hustle
Lone Survivor

My Top 5 Performances in a movie

Hugh Jackman – Prisoners
Christian Bale – American Hustle/Out of the Furnance
Tom Hanks – Captain Phillips
Chiwetel Ejiofor – 12 Year a Slave
Leonardo DiCaprio – The Great Gatsby

Now onto the list of movies that I saw in 2013 and a short one-line review and how many stars I gave it. *Updated 01/07/13*

The movie stars are on scale of 0-5 stars. 0 being the lowest and 5 being the highest.

Movie Short Review Stars
Gangster Squad Great cast and awesome movie *** 1/2
A Haunted House Just another terrible spoof movie *
Broken City Tons hated this movie but I really liked it ***
Last Stand Arnold is back but this movie fell flat **
Parker A lot like other Jason Statham movies good not great **
Warm Bodies Boring, not funny and just a waste of my time *
Bullet to the Head Stallone is just kick ass at anything he does. **1/2
Identity Thief I liked it the 2nd & 3rd time better than I did the 1st. Pretty Funny ***
A Good Day to Die Hard Jai Courtney is a future star. Willis & company kept me   entertained ***
Beautiful Creatures Not good, Not terrible just not my cup of tea. **
Snitch Jon Bernthal is great in this & the Rock delivers again. ***
21 and over Tried way too hard in this to make it funny, mediocre at best. **
Dead Man Down Way better than it should’ve ever been. ** 1/2
Oz the great and powerful Visually really good, enjoyable movie. ** 1/2
The Call High hopes & let down. Terrible movie *
Spring Breakers FRANCO KILLS IN THIS MOVIE!!!!!!!!! Loved this! ****
Incredible Burt Wonderstone Not good not funny just should’ve never made it to theaters
Olympus Has Fallen So good. Start to finish a really good movie ***1/2
Admission Tina Fey is hot, Tina Fey is hot. That’s about it. *
GI Joe Retaliation 1st move was good & this one didn’t disappoint. **1/2
The Place Beyond the Pines Ryan Gosling kills it. One of the MUST SEE movies of the year *****
Jurassic Park 3D The 3D done on this was done perfect. ***1/2
The Company You Keep Shia LeBeouf was great. Robert Redford is the man! ****
Trance Boring, stupid and just not good. *
Evil Dead Worst movie of the year is an understatement.
42 Great movie about one of the best baseball players ever! ***
Scary Movie 5 Funny at times but like the rest just an average movie. **
Pain and Gain Top 5 funniest movies of the year easily. ****
Iron Man 3 Favorite Iron Man movie, Downey Jr is money as Tony Starks ***
The Great Gatsby Not enough words to describe how much I enjoyed this film. *****
Star Trek Into Darkness A sequel that was much better than the original, suprising. ***
Fast & Furious 6 Over the top, crazy & a kick ass time at the movies. RIP Paul Walker ****
Hangover part III Not nearly as bad as II but not on the same level as the 1st. **
Now You See Me Top movie of the year for me. The whole cast/movie was money. ****
The East All over the place and sad because it had some real potential. *
The Purge Look so forward to this movie and it let me down big time. *
The Internship One of the most underrated/under apperciated movies of the year. ***1/2
The Heat Bullock & McCarthy team up one of funniest movies of the year. ****
Man of Steel Henry Cavill was good as Superman but the movie lacked something **1/2
Vehicle 19 Not bad but felt like it was a movie I have seen before. **
This Is the End The funniest movie since the Hangover. *****
World War Z Brad Pitt in his best movie of his career. *** 1/2
Lone Ranger Johnny Depp always plays weird characters. Meh movie **
The Way Way Back One of the feel good movies of the year. Loved it ****
Grown Ups 2 Was it possible to be worse than the 1st? Please stop makint these. *
Pacific Rim It was fun to see on the big screen but wasn’t a great movie. ** 1/2
RIPD Thought it was possible to be a good movie, boy was I wrong. *
Red 2 Not as fun as the 1st but not a bad sequel at all. **
Wolverine Way better than the 1st and a solid piece to the franchise. ***
2 Guns Denzel & Marky Mark, combo made in heaven. Loved it. *** 1/2
We’re the Millers 1000% better than I would’ve thought. Aniston is HOTTT in this. ****
Kick Ass 2 Funny spots but not nearly as good as the 1st. Let down big time. **
Paranoia Liam Hemsworth is a star in the making. ***
You’re Next Underrated movie of the year. Great film that kept you guessing *** 1/2
The Family Terrible just terrible. Good acting but the plot holes were huge! *
Prisoners Arguably the best film of the year. MUST SEE!!!!!!! *****
Rush Fantastic Film. Daniel Bruhl was money. ***
Don Jon JGL 1st direct/star movie and it was a fun little popcorn flick. ***
Gravity Lots of praise but not be me at all. Mediocre at best. **
Runner Runner Very smart movie that won’t get the credit it deserves. ***
Captain Phillips Loved it! Tom Hanks derserves some award buzz for his role in this. ****
Escape Plan Very good movie. Loved the concept and the old times killed it. *** 1/2
Thor – The Dark World Light years better than the original. Hemsworth is carving his nitch. ****
Hunger Games – Catching Fire So so good. I am already for the 3rd movie. ****
Homefront Good, not great but James Franco played a great villian. ** 1/3
Grudge Match It wasn’t terrible by any means but wasn’t all that and a bag of chips. ** 1/2
The Wolf of Wall Street Fun FUN FUN FUN – Don’t listen to the critics go enjoy this movie!!! ****
Lone Survivor One of/if not the best time I’ve ever had inside a theater. *****
Jobs Not as bad as some of sad but left you wanting a lot more. ***
Blue Caprice If you know the story than you really need to see this movie. ***
The Worlds End Terrible. *
Mud Long but McConaughey is becoming one of my favorite actors. ** 1/2
12 years a slave Just brilliant film. Chiwetel Ejiofor is name you should know. ****
Fruitvale Station Michael B Jordan has arrived in the movie scene. *** 1/2
Only God Forgives This gave Evil Dead it’s run of worst movie of 2013. no stars
Out Of the Furnace Harrelson & Bale give some of the best perf. of 2013. ****
American Hustle Nothing about this movie was bad. Cast/Story/Score all perfect. **** 1/2
Dallas Buyers Club McConaughey/Leto were absolutley amazing in this! ****
Saving Mr. Banks Tom Hanks is back and better than ever. *** 1/2
The Butler Just wasn’t very good. **
The Kings of Summer Fun movie with a very cool story and some solid young acting. ***

Side note – If there were any films in 2013 that I haven’t listed and you think I should check out or if there is any film on this list that I gave a bad review and think I should give a second chance let me know. Comment below or hit me up on twitter @rickygangster