Dog’s Movie House: “No Escape” Slick But Somewhat Unpleasant Thriller!

 

 

Howdy Folks!  It’s The Kendog!

 

Pierce Brosnan And Owen Wilson In "No Escape"

Pierce Brosnan And Owen Wilson In “No Escape”

 

 

 

John Erick Dowdle is primarily known for his horror films.  Movies like “Quarantine” and “As Above, So Below” trade on the menace of inhuman threats for the thrills he generates.  It’s not a bad formula and those two films, while far from perfect, have some genuinely interesting elements to them.  I suppose, then, I could forgive Dowdle (along with his brother Drew, who co-wrote the script) for applying the same formula for the new political thriller “No Escape.”  Trouble is the people menacing the recently arrived to Thailand (or Cambodia or whatever country to which they’ve recently moved; the film doesn’t say) are supposed to be people, no monsters, and treating them as the latter makes this otherwise slick exercise in suspense and action filmmaking uncomfortable to watch in all the wrong ways.  Continue reading

Dog’s Movie House: “American Ultra” Entertaining, Sometimes Uneven Mix Of Action And Comedy!

 

Jesse Eisenberg & Kristen Stewart In "American Ultra"

Jesse Eisenberg & Kristen Stewart In “American Ultra”

 

 

Howdy Folks!  It’s The Kendog!

 

 

Stoner comedies have always had their place in the cinema.  Every since Cheech and Chong first lit up in the 70’s there has been an audience for movies with protagonists who spend most of their screen time high.  Many of these comedies have a difficult time combining the broad comedic strokes involved with the stoner lifestyle with well-rounded and believable characters.  Add an action component to the mix and the equation becomes even more complex.  Fortunately, “American Ultra” the new film from “Chronicle” scripter Max Landis, manages to, for the most part, balance all of these balls in the air to a very entertaining effect. Continue reading

Dog’s Movie House: “Agent 47” More Of A Sleep Agent Then Anything Else!

Rupert Friend as Agent 47 in "Hitman: Agent 47"

Rupert Friend as Agent 47 in “Hitman: Agent 47”

 

 

Howdy Folks!  It’s The Kendog!

 

 

Videogame movies are almost impossible to pull off.  It seems that the filmmakers forget that just having gamers’ favorite characters onscreen is not enough to ensure a good movie.  You still have to deal with little things like plot, acting, and decent cinematography.  Unfortunately, “Hitman: Agent 47” continues that trend, turning what could have been an amusing B movie concept into a loud, lumbering, clichéd bore. Continue reading

Dog’s Movie House: “Straight Outta Compton” Compelling, Emotionally Charged Depiction Of The Rise Of “Gangsta” Rap!

 

The Cast of "Straight Outta Compton"

The Cast of “Straight Outta Compton”

 

Howdy Folks!  It’s The Kendog!

 

 

 

I was in high school when NWA (Niggaz Wit Attitudes) changed the face of rap culture, bringing in the hard core era of “gangsta” or reality based rap.  I didn’t have to like the music (still don’t, by the way) to appreciate its origins or the cultural effect it had on the American landscape.  The new music bio-pic “Straight Outta Compton” profiles the rise and fall of this game changing Southern California based rap group with grit, gusto, and a tone of honesty that sets this apart from other flicks of this kind.  Continue reading

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