Justin Quizon

Film fanatic who can't stop writing about/talking about/ and even make films. Follow me on Twitter: @JustinQuizon and on Tumblr: http://justinquiz.tumblr.com/

Right when Halloween ends (we quite literally start the new month on Friday) a WHOLE mess of new movie releases will be unleashed upon to the viewing audiences.

We got a couple based on true life events, several comedies, one horror film, an animated flick for the kiddies, Keanu remembering that he knows Kung Fu, and a Sci-Fi movie adaptation.

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What’s it about? In 2010 “Skinwalker Ranch” gained media attention after experiencing a wide range of unexplained phenomena. Reports ranged from UFO sightings to livestock mutilation, but maybe most notable was the disappearance of ranch owner Hoyt Miller’s eight year old son, Cody on November 11, 2010. Close to a year later, Modern Defense Enterprises (MDE) has sent a team of experts to document and investigate the mysterious occurrences, which only escalate upon their arrival. The incidents become more violent, causing tensions to rise as the team must decide how far they will go to unlock the mysteries of “Skinwalker Ranch.” The group debates whether the answers are worth risking their lives for, or if they should just call off the investigation and leave the ranch – that is, if leaving is actually an option…

http://youtu.be/zPAOC5F5o1c

My thoughts? It’s a found footage horror movie…..you all know how I feel about those…but the sci-fi twist is sorta neat. But, yeah, I really hate found footage horror films.

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What’s it about? At the age of 21, Tim Lake (Domhnall Gleeson) discovers he can travel in time…

The night after another unsatisfactory New Year party, Tim’s father (Bill Nighy) tells his son that the men in his family have always had the ability to travel through time. Tim can’t change history, but he can change what happens and has happened in his own life–so he decides to make his world a better place…by getting a girlfriend. Sadly, that turns out not to be as easy as you might think.

Moving from the Cornwall coast to London to train as a lawyer, Tim finally meets the beautiful but insecure Mary (Rachel McAdams). They fall in love, then an unfortunate time-travel incident means he’s never met her at all. So they meet for the first time again-and again-but finally, after a lot of cunning time-traveling, he wins her heart.

Tim then uses his power to create the perfect romantic proposal, to save his wedding from the worst best-man speeches, to save his best friend from professional disaster and to get his pregnant wife to the hospital in time for the birth of their daughter, despite a nasty traffic jam outside Abbey Road.

But as his unusual life progresses, Tim finds out that his unique gift can’t save him from the sorrows and ups and downs that affect all families, everywhere. There are great limits to what time travel can achieve, and it can be dangerous too. ‘About Time’ is a comedy about love and time travel, which discovers that, in the end, making the most of life may not need time travel at all.

My thoughts? Writer/director Richard Curtis can be the right kind of sentimental. At his best he can create lovable characters and make you somehow believe that they are intensely in love with each other. This film has a pretty wonderful and whimsical premise, and I laughed quite a bit while watching the trailer. He’s got a great cast in this one too as I think Domhnall Gleeson is a fantastic as the nontraditional lead. Rachel McAdams can be pretty great in the right roles and Bill Nighy is…well…motherfucking Bill Nighy, which means he always delivers, especially if he’s working with Richard Curtis.

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What’s it about? Billy (Academy Award-winner Michael Douglas), Paddy (Academy Award-winner Robert De Niro), Archie (Academy Award winner Morgan Freeman) and Sam (Academy Award-winner Kevin Kline) have been best friends since childhood. So when Billy, the group’s sworn bachelor, finally proposes to his thirty-something (of course) girlfriend, the four head to Las Vegas with a plan to stop acting their age and relive their glory days. However, upon arriving, the four quickly realize that the decades have transformed Sin City and tested their friendship in ways they never imagined. The Rat Pack may have once played the Sands and Cirque du Soleil may now rule the Strip, but it’s these four who are taking over Vegas.

My thoughts?I really shouldn’t be that interested in this one, and while Michael Douglas and Robert De Niro are great, I am a HUGE fan of Kevin Kline and Morgan Freeman. Yeah, it’s The Hangover with older guys, but this seems like a decent and non threatening comedy. I’d catch this one on cable if it was on, or take my mom to see it. She’d probably like it.

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What’s it about? Matthew McConaughey stars in ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ as real-life Texas cowboy Ron Woodroof, whose free-wheeling life was overturned in 1985 when he was diagnosed as HIV-positive and given 30 days to live. These were the early days of the AIDS epidemic, and the U.S. was divided over how to combat the virus. Ron, now shunned and ostracized by many of his old friends, and bereft of government-approved effective medicines, decided to take matters in his own hands, tracking down alternative treatments from all over the world by means both legal and illegal. Bypassing the establishment, the entrepreneurial Woodroof joined forces with an unlikely band of renegades and outcasts – who he once would have shunned – and established a hugely successful “buyers’ club.” Their shared struggle for dignity and acceptance is a uniquely American story of the transformative power of resilience.

My thoughts? Reviews for McConaughey in this one are really great so far. I’m very glad that he has started to pick out interesting roles again, because the guy who was playing the same role in a lot of romantic comedies was getting really old for me. This is a pretty great story too, so I’ll definitely check this one out.

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What’s it about? ‘Diana’ takes audiences into the private realm of one the world’s most iconic and inescapably public women — the Princess of Wales, Diana (two-time Oscar nominee Naomi Watts) — in the last two years of her meteoric life. On the occasion of the 16th anniversary of her sudden death, acclaimed director Oliver Hirschbiegel (the Oscar-nominated Downfall) explores Diana’s final rite of passage: a secret love affair with Pakistani heart surgeon Hasnat Khan (Naveen Andrews, “Lost,” ‘The English Patient’), the human complications of which reveal the Princess’s climactic days in a compelling new light.

Hirschbiegel directs from a screenplay by award-winning playwright Stephen Jeffreys, based on the book Diana: Her Last Love by Kate Snell, which was in turn drawn from extensive interviews with close friends and confidantes. The result is a window into the tumultuous, change-filled period from 1995-1997, in the wake of Diana’s shattering divorce from Prince Charles, and at the moment when she stood on the cusp of a different life, evolving into a global humanitarian, a master of maneuvering fame and becoming her own woman.

My thoughts? Naomi Watts does bear a STRIKING resemblance to the actual Diana, and I suppose a film about her was bound to happen sooner or later. This film isn’t really on the radar for anyone right now, which might hint at the films unremarkable elements. Truthfully, I feel like this film sometimes looks like a Lifetime Movie but with a bigger budget (or a really dramatic version of Notting Hill). Maybe there is a spark of something special in it somewhere. Watts seems like she’s doing her best, but one wonders if a strong performance from her is enough to make this film worth a viewing.

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What’s it about? Two turkeys band together to go back in time to save their own kind from being on the menu list in this animated comedy from Relativity Media and Reel FX. Owen Wilson and Woody Harrelson head up the voice cast, with Jimmy Hayward (Horton Hears a Who!) handling directing duties.

My thoughts? Ehhh…..I’m good. Looks cute, but not really for me. If you got kids, have a good time with them and watch this one together….hmm…wonder if kids will start hating Thanksgiving if they get attached to this movie.

“NO MOMMY! DON’T EAT THE TURKEY! THEY WERE FRIENDLY!”

…..on second thought, don’t take the kids. Watch Toy Story instead.

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What’s it about? The Misfortunates director Felix Van Groeningen returns with this romantic melodrama about two passionate young lovers who find their happy future threatened by an unforeseen tragedy. The moment Elise (Veerle Baetens) laid eyes on Didier (Johan Heldenbergh), it was love at first sight. He was an atheist banjo player in a spirited bluegrass band, and she was the devout owner of a small tattoo shop. Although their personalities and belief systems were hopelessly at odds, Elise and Didier somehow managed to establish a deeply spiritual bond. Shortly after moving into a picturesque farmhouse, the couple welcome a beautiful baby daughter named Maybelle. For the next six years, everything seemed perfect. When young Maybelle falls gravely ill, however, her disparate parents clash in the ways they choose to confront their grim reality. Now, just when Elise and Didier must come together to fight for their daughter’s future, they realize that the differences that once made them strong may ultimately become their downfall.

My thoughts? Whoa, whoa whoa whoa. Not only do the visuals look great, and that the music is good…this movie is from Belgium!  Definitely got my attention.

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What’s it about?  Two-time Oscar-winner Michael Caine stars with Clémence Poésy, Justin Kirk and Gillian Anderson in this richly nuanced, emotion-charged story of lost souls, new-found hope and ‘Last Love’. Matthew Morgan (Caine) is a widowed, world-weary professor living in Paris. The cynical Matthew sees no meaningful future for himself – until he meets Pauline (Poésy), a free-spirited young dance instructor. The unlikely bond they form ultimately leads them to rediscover the joy that only family and true friendship can offer.

My thoughts? This one looks like it will be a sweet little film (sweet as in sugary, not sweet as in DUUUUUDE, that’s sweet.) Also, anytime Michael Caine gets to be charming is always a good time at the movies, especially older still awesome Michael Caine.

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What’s it about? A man close to death ponders the many lives he might have led in this fantasy from director and screenwriter Jaco van Dormael. Nemo Nobody (Jared Leto) is 117-years-old, ill and facing his last days as he looks back on his past and a particular crucial moment — at the age of nine, Nemo’s parents divorced, and as his mother (Natasha Little) and father (Rhys Ifans) stood on a train platform, he had to choose who he would go with, and whether he would live in the United States or Great Britain. Either choice would bring with it a wide variety of possibilities regarding the sort of life he would lead, and Nemo imagines nearly all of them, including two different wives — sweet but emotionally blank Jeanne (Linh-Dan Pham) and lovely but troubled Elise (Sarah Polley) — and another woman, Anna (Diane Kruger), who he loves but can not marry. But as Nemo considers the many different paths his life could have taken, his memory begins to fail him, and he finds it increasingly difficult to be certain which was his real life and which is a product of his imagination. Mr. Nobody also stars Thomas Byrne as nine-year-old Nemo and Toby Regbo as Nemo in his teenage years.

My thoughts? Visually stunning Sci-Fi looking film, that seems to be a giant tale of twists and turns thanks to it’s unreliable narrator. While I’m not really a fan of Jared Leto (his second film to be released this week as he’s also in Dallas Buyers Club.) he seems like he’s up for the challenge for this one. Could be interesting, could very well be a movie with too much ambition that it falls apart at the seams. It sorta reminds me of Cloud Atlas, and if you loved that one then Mr. Nobody might capture your interest.

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What’s it about? When successful construction mogul Herman Noble accidentally stumbles onto his children’s credit card statements, he discovers they are spending money without abandon. His oldest son Javier neglects the family business in exchange of his own half-brained business ideas. His daughter Barbara gets engaged to a 40-year-old gigolo just to spite her father. And his youngest son Charlie is expelled from college for having sex with his architecture professor. Herman Noble realizes his children are spoiled- too spoiled- and decides to teach them a lesson.
He stages a massive foreclosure and sneaks them out of the luxurious house into a poor neighborhood. He makes them find work. His hippie son Charlie gets work as a bank teller, Javi drives a cheap transit bus, and Barbara becomes a waitress at a cantina.

Herman enjoys his children’s suffering as they learn the hardships of working in the real world, but everything changes once he learns that Barbara has been a bulimic for 8 years and that Javier is dyslexic and it is clear to him that his absence has been deeper that he imagined. It is only when all the secrets come out that the family begins to come together. Unfortunately, Peter, the 40-year-old gigolo dating Barbara, discovers that Herman’s bankruptcy was staged. So he shows up at the poor house and corners Herman when he threatens to expose the truth. Peter takes them all back to their home, leaving Herman at the hardest juncture: If he tells his children the truth, they will never forgive him. But if he remains quiet, his daughter will marry a blackmailer… What can he do?

My thoughts? This film is one of the highest grossing films from Mexico and it’s being brought here to the states. Not really feeling this one, but I can see the American remake of this one, starring cast members from either a Nickelodeon Show or a CW show.  Didn’t find the trailer very funny, but hey, to each it’s own.

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What’s it about? Liev Schreiber (‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’) and Jeanne Tripplehorn (Big Love) star in this funny, moving and perceptive exploration of romance and the challenges of marriage. On the cusp of their ninth anniversary, James and Nina seem to have the perfect marriage and ideal lives – an affluent life in Amsterdam, lucrative jobs and adoring friends. Yet when Nina discovers James’s infidelity with a mutual friend of theirs after a long line of extramarital affairs, it’s the final straw, shattering whatever illusions they’ve created about their relationship and leaving them separated. Heartbroken about their separation, a stroke of luck leads Nina to impersonate James’s chatty travel agent on the phone, and he’s soon pouring his heart out and unwittingly falling for his wife all over again as they discuss the uncertainty of love and the eternal misunderstanding between men and women.

My thoughts? It’s funny how some trailers are more interested in selling the mood than the actual story of the film. Viewing that trailer, you saw them sell the humor, the performances of Liev Schreiber and Jeanne Tripplehorn, and the dramatic and comedic tone. All this looks fine, but you don’t know, judging the trailer only, that Schreiber and Tripplehorn’s characters are divorced and this is not a story about how they met. The film looks fine, nothing for me to get too excited for personally.

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What’s it about? An adaptation of American literary icon Jack Kerouac’s novel of the same name, ‘Big Sur’ focuses on a moment in Kerouac’s life when, overwhelmed by the success of his opus On the Road and struggling to battle inner demons, he seeks respite in three brief sojourns to a cabin in the small, coastal California town of Big Sur. Michael Polish’s film is at once a poetic meditation and a love-letter to the work of an author who defined the Beat Generation.

My thoughts? This film is directed by one half the filmmaking brothers Michael and Mark Polish. Normally Michael directs and Mark produces and co-writes, but this time this film is all done by Michael by himself. Knowing that this is Michael Polish, it makes sense why the film has such a distinct look to it. His visual style is quite evident. I’ve never read any Kerouac, so I’m wondering if anyone out there has liked what they see in this trailer. Right now I have no real interest in it, but I am curious about watching it for Michael Polish’s directing alone.

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What’s it about? Set in modern Beijing, ‘Man Of Tai Chi’ marks Keanu Reeves’ directorial debut. The film, also starring Reeves, follows the spiritual journey of a young martial artist (played by Tiger Chen) whose unparalleled Tai Chi skills land him in a highly lucrative underworld fight club. As the fights intensify, so does his will to survive.

My thoughts? I do love me a good martial arts action film, and judging from the reviews I’ve been reading, that is exactly what I should be getting. The fights are choreographed by the legendary Yuen Woo Ping, who also did The Matrix trilogy with Keanu, Kill Bill, Fist of Legend and most of the great kung fu films from Hong Kong. I also dig that Keanu will be playing the bad guy in this one, and it seems like he’s enjoying the chance to ham it up properly. The fights look pretty great, and truth be told, that reason alone is enough for me to buy my ticket. If I do get to see it in theaters, I hope it’s with a crowed audience ready to go with the flow.

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What’s it about? In the near future, a hostile alien race called the Formics have attacked Earth. If not for the legendary heroics of International Fleet Commander Mazer Rackham (Ben Kingsley), all would have been lost. In preparation for the next attack, the highly esteemed Colonel Hyrum Graff (Harrison Ford) and the International Military are training only the best young minds to find the future Mazer.

Ender Wiggin (Asa Butterfield), a shy but strategically brilliant boy, is recruited to join the elite. Arriving at Battle School, Ender quickly and easily masters increasingly difficult challenges and simulations, distinguishing himself and winning respect amongst his peers. Ender is soon ordained by Graff as the military’s next great hope, resulting in his promotion to Command School. Once there, he’s trained by Mazer Rackham himself to lead his fellow soldiers into an epic battle that will determine the future of Earth and save the human race.

Based on the best-selling, award winning novel, ‘ENDER’S GAME’ is an epic adventure which stars Asa Butterfield, Hailee Steinfeld, Ben Kingsley, Viola Davis, with Abigail Breslin and Harrison Ford.

 My thoughts? I’m still not sure why all of their trailers haven’t been focusing on the Zero Gravity training room, which is where MOST of the action takes place in the book. I highly doubt that the film will lessen those scenes from the book, but it’s a strange decision on the marketing part. (Sidenote: I find it funny that people think that crazy tribal tattoos will be the thing in the future, judging from the characters from Mr. Nobody and Ben Kingsly in Enders Game.)

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As I wrote in my write up about the first trailer, Enders Game is one of my favorite books of all time, and I truly hope that this film lives up to the that potential.

The cast is solid, and the film’s VFX look quite nice, but I’m not sure if the film will deliver. I’m willing to say that director Gavin Hood’s previous big studio film; X-Men Orgins: Wolverine, was a situation that he had no control over, and it seems like he’s been having a great time making this one work more to his liking. Right now, I’m cautious. Very cautious. The footage looks nice, but nothing is making me very excited.

Ok folks, what about you guys? What films are you most excited about this week? Comment below and tell us!

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