KSWI Presents: Remebering The Second Half of 2012′s Movies

December 28, 2012

Guten tag, verführerinnen!

I have been living the holiday life of sweat pants and sleeping in late and well… that’s what I do all the time, but now I’m doing it with my lady and many times I forget to post when I’m with my lady. Either way, I’m posting today, so BE HAPPY ABOUT IT!

If you’re wondering about the stash of presents I received for Christmas…

Clothes, a popcorn maker, a gas grill, accoutrements for gas grill, a class on food and wine pairing, a bottle of bourbon, and… what was that last thing… oh right… a










So… yep.

I’m just going to say that if you ever show up to my domicile unannounced, you will not be shot. Nope. You’ll never be shot by a gun. BUT… you may have your ass sliced by samurai sushi style with my katana blade like I’m Toshihiro Mifune as Yojimbo and/or for younger American folks as Uma Thurman in Kill Bill.

Now, let’s get to the heart of this post…

In July, I posted a list of the movies that I had seen up until that point with little mini-reviews. I shall do the same for the second half of the movies from 2012. If you want to get yourself reacquainted with the first half…



The Dark Knight Rises – Fucking loved it. I loved every second of this movie. I loved Bane, I loved Catwoman, I loved Batman, I loved that this movie made me cry, I loved the Scarecrow showing up again, I loved the middle Eastern fairytale jail, I loved that part where Batman took the time to write his own symbol on the bridge in fire, I loved that Batman had to be killed by a fucking atom bomb, I loved all of it. I think this movie felt like it was an entire graphic novel being read to you more than any other comic book movie. It was wonderful.

Safety Not Guaranteed – Great. It’s the best indie rom-com you’ll see this year, easily. I thought it was funny and filled with heart. I know it didn’t get much attention, but it should have. The movie is really focused on 4 characters and each one of them are thoroughly enjoyable when the movie shifts to them. I wasn’t bored at any moment and I was really interested in what would happen next. If you like silly, funny, but kind of serious movies that are a little out there (if you don’t then you need to start) then you need to see this movie. One of the better films I saw all year.

The Campaign – Funny, but slightly forgettable. Both actors have done much better work and much better work recently. It was a good idea for a movie and it is pulled off pretty well. It’s definitely got more than enough laughs for a rental if you didn’t see it.

(partial) Cosmopolis – I didn’t watch the whole thing. I watched the first 30 minutes. I was pretty bored after 30 minutes and I had absolutely no want to go back to see the other 60 or 90 or how many other boring minutes are out there. I haven’t read anything that makes me think I’m missing much either.

The Expendables 2 – Terrible. I guess this movie is better than the first Expendables, but not by much. Expendables was TERRIBLE and Expendables 2 was TERRiBLE if you catch my drift. It is nice that they had a more interesting villain in Jean Claude Van Damme, but they didn’t do much beyond cast him to make his character interesting. The action sequences are beyond dull. And the formula from the first movie is the same, each character has one extended dialogue sequence that is the character’s only exposition that is all sorts of uncomfortable, awkward, and unenlightening. Terrible movie. I won’t be seeing the third if/when it comes out sometime next year.

Lawless – It’s not bad, but it’s not good. It kind of sits there undecided whether it’s going to go all out and do something really bad on screen, meanwhile has little to no feeling of feeling like the movie it should feel like and be good. For a movie directed by John Hillcoat, it feels like anything but his work. The storyline is arguably interesting at best and the best actor in the movie speaks in grunts and sighs. It’s only a good commercial to read the book it is based on to figure out if the book is as nothing special or was there a lot written out of the movie. Who knows. Who cares. Better luck next time for all that were involved.

The Master – Loved it. I’m not sure why this movie didn’t receive either the fan fare or the critical praise that I thought it was due. It’s an intense movie and it’s intense in conversation over actual action. It’s a psychological portrait of a character told through psychological sitdowns and conversations and so forth. It’s a movie about id vs. super ego and it’s shot more beautifully than anything else that came out this year or most years. As far as the scientology aspects, they are certainly there. But it is more of a hard look at all religion, philosophy, political orientation and the like where one becomes a member of a line of thinking and leaves behind being an entity unto themselves. All in the movie acted brilliantly.

Dredd 3D – Oh Olivia. Olivia Thirlby. She’s actually quite good in the movie. The movie itself is kind of ho hum for all the gory violence and gory violence dialogue. There are definitely some positives in Dredd, but they’re kind of few and far between. The storyline is thin and the movie is based around slow motion as a gimmick and it never really crosses over into being an integral part of the plot. I thought the movie was average in the end – the pros and cons balanced each other out. Even the idea of it being an improvement on the Stallone Judge Dredd is a discussion. Is it less of a kid’s movie? Sure, but it’s not much of an adult movie either. It’s a better caliber of movie in a sense, but it’s also not as fun. So, who knows. It’s certainly a good rental if you see all action movies and you want to see another.

End of Watch – It’s better than I expected and I did expect it to be quite good. I like Jake Gyllenhall and I like Michael Pena and I like Anna Kendrick even though she’s not in the movie that much. The main two of Jake and Michael do a good job of making the movie feel personal and that they’re buds and that they’re cops. The movie itself starts strong and as it gets further into the meat of the storyline it gets a little ahead of itself and random. It’s clear that David Ayer (writer/director) needs a good editor. I mean a life editor. He needs someone to come in and round the edges and make sure the pieces actually fit and that things make sense or are needed. All of his movies have that feel and so does this one. This is definitely his best effort as a director and his best effort as a writer since Training Day, but no where near Training Day. Definitely a solid rental. If you don’t like cursing though then don’t see it. They curse so many times it’s as if the only words in the script were curse words.

Looper – I liked it a lot. I couldn’t give you a number out of 10 to represent how I liked it or a letter grade, but I can say that while watching the movie I was never not interested in what was going to happen next. That’s a big compliment because that’s not always the case even with good movies. The movie is far from perfect with a bunch of flaws, but it’s a fun fucking movie. I can’t express how entertained I was by this movie and that’s what it comes down to. It entertained me and I liked it a lot for that. The storyline gets kind of out of control. I had no clue heading into the movie that the movie was going to end up like that movie did, but I enjoyed it while I watched it. As far as the big deal of Joseph Gordon Levitt having prosthetics to make him look like Bruce Willis… I’m doing the universal sign of “C’mon” which is the handjob to an invisible penis. At no point does Levitt look like Willis and/or vice versa and at no point was that ever a necessary. They should have just let Levitt look like Levitt and the movie would have been exactly the same. I liked it and that’s what matters in the end.

Argo – First, I really liked this movie. Second, I haven’t seen “Zero Dark Thirty” yet, but I’m guessing that Ben Affleck will win best director this year. I’m not saying it because I think he was the best director or anything, but I do think that’s going to happen. Third, I really liked this movie a lot. I think it was easily one of the best movies to come out this year and I do think Ben Affleck is a talented director. Sure, he does step on his own feet at times with some dialogue choices and with him casting himself, but way more than not is he doing a great job as director. That’s 3 movies in a row where he has directed a movie that will be nominated for Oscars and I can’t wait to see what he does next. Fourth, about Ben acting in the movies, I just find Ben to be distracting at this point. At no point in the movie am I not thinking “that’s Ben Affleck”. I’m just always thinking it. I don’t care what he’s doing, he’s Ben Affleck. i think Ben needs to be in a movie or two where he makes fun of himself. I think he needs some breaking the 4th wall kind of stuff and then maybe he can go back to acting as someone else. Also, he’s still too jacked. He needs to lose some of those action muscles and lean out some. In the movie “Jersey Girl” it was like the single dad was the fucking Hulk with an adorable hispanic daughter.

Wreck-It Ralph – Great. It was exactly what you would want out of a borderline kids/adults movie. It had great action sequences, it had plenty of jokes, it was cuter than can be, and it made me tear up like a little bitch. Yep. I really liked the movie a lot. I think there was one miss in the movie that should’ve been the climax, but whatever. The climax was find, but it could’ve been better and I bet what I’m picturing in my head – all the video game characters come and help defeat the bugs – was storyboarded or talked about and they may have got rid of it because it would’ve been an extra 10 minutes of movie that would’ve cost millions upon millions more. Who knows. But it was a fun movie and worth a watch.

SkyFall – FUCKING AWFUL. Every second of it. Fucking piece of shit movie and all that were involved should be fucking ashamed of themselves. In the first half of the year, I hated every fucking second of that fucking Spider-Man movie. In the second half of the year, I hated every fucking second of this SkyFall movie. I would say it was easily the worst James Bond movie ever made, which is saying something because there are a lot of terrible ones and this was clearly the worst. If this is what we’re looking forward to with more James Bond then fuck that franchise. But I’m apparently in the sane minority because I’m literally seeing this in the top 3 of best movies of the year which makes me want to go on a head chopping spree with my katana.

Lincoln – Good. Not great, but good. It is a throwback film. I mean it feels like a Gregory Peck film from a century ago, but it is in color. Daniel Day-Lewis did a great great job as well as Sally Field and so on and so forth. And I thought it was about the best movie that could be made on ratifying an amendment, but in that there is a limit to how good it could possibly be. The ending is weird, but the climax is great. I couldn’t imagine being wrapped up in the counting of votes of a vote you know the outcome of, but they did a good job with it. Definitely some bad elements in the movie, but overall it was quite good.

Killing Them Softly – Loved it. It’s about as thinking man’s hitman film as you’re ever going to get. It’s a conversational film with characters actually sitting down and talking and the acting is very well done. The action is few and far between, but it hits you like a fucking hammer. It’s a solid effort as both a political metaphor and as a gangster flick. I liked it a lot and I wish more people saw it. Another great piece of work from Andrew Dominick.

(partial) The Man with the Iron Fists – Bad. Not worth it. You know how I said some unflattering things about Dredd, but said that you should still see it… well, don’t see The Man with the Iron Fists. Whatever problems I have with Dredd doesn’t mean the movie is unwatchable. They are valid issues and the movie could have been better as the movie they presented, but The Man with the Iron Fists is a waste of time. It hurts for me to say that because I like these types of movies and I like everyone involved, but from the hour I saw – it’s crap. If you want to go out and see the movies that this movie is supposedly paying homage to then do that. Go see “The Master of the Flying Guillotine” which in my opinion is the best of those 70’s bloody samurai movies. But don’t see this Iron Fists crap.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey – Good, not great. It’s a copy of a copy of a copy of a copy at this point and sure it is wearing a little thin, but it is still enjoyable. The overall feel is still there and it isn’t as good as LotR, but it’s not unwatchable like the Star Wars prequels were to the Star Wars originals. The big knock against this movie is that it’s too much CGI. Also, origin stories usually suck. I’m expecting the second Hobbit movie to be better and I feel very safe and comfortable assuming that. It also made me more excited to see the second one than before.

Jack Reacher – It’s fucking goooooooood. I loved this movie. I think Christopher McQuarrie nailed the “Dirty Harry” and “Bullitt” feel and gave us Tom Cruise as a 1970’s style action detective hero. I didn’t read those books and I don’t care how tall that character is supposed to be. Cruise delivers in this movie and so does the story, so does the tone, so does the pace, so does the dialogue, so does the action, and so does Rosamund Pike’s heaving cleavage. I loved it all.

Jeff, Who Lives At Home – I saw it on TV the other day. It was pretty good. It’s watchable, but nothing you need to go out of your way for. It’s kind of too serious to be funny and too silly to be heartbreaking, so it’s caught in the middle. I liked it enough, but I thought it was unsatisfying. It’s a good movie to watch on TV or to rent for free. I think paying money for it may change your opinion of it. It was good enough I felt. Plus, I can’t dislike any movie with Susan Sarandon kissing a chick in it.

Silver Linings Playbook – Great. In the end, great. I wasn’t sure how I would feel about this movie in the end as some parts of the movie I really liked and others I thought were a little unneeded, but when it was all over I was happy with what I just watched. I think Bradley Cooper does a great job, I think Jennifer Lawrence does a great job, Robert DeNiro does a great job, actually Chris Tucker does a great job in the bits he is in, and really all the actors are great in the movie. And the director – David O. Russell – really nails the manic bipolar shifts that he’s supposed to and he really nails making everyone seem unhinged and crazy. And at the same time, I loved the final message of the movie — Jennifer Lawrence’s boobs are so spectacular they can make even the craziest man sane. That’s beautiful.

Django Unchained – Wow. It was definitely everything one would expect and then some. It is brutal. I thought tone wise QT did a great job of being both horribly racist and funny entertainment. I think the acting was great as usual in his movies. Jamie Foxx goes from confused mute to the black Superman. Christoph Waltz is the tried and true star of the movie for most of it. Leonardo DiCaprio is an evil genius and Samuel L. Jackson is about the only person ever who could have pulled his role off and actually out evil genius Leo. Very entertaining through and through. I really want to see it again. I don’t know how I would rate it against QT’s other movies which I think is unfair to do and at the same time everyone’s natural inclination. But it was great. I loved watching it. And I can’t wait to see it again.



As far as what I’ve missed… Some of these movies, I missed because I heard they weren’t that good and I’m not sure if I’ll see them, but I did want to see them at the time. There are probably some others that I’m forgetting, but these are some that come to mind.

“The Do-Deca-Pentathlon”, “Searching for Sugar Man”, “Girl Model”, “The Sessions”, “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World”, “Take This Waltz”, “Mansome”, “Marley”, “Sound of My Voice”, “Tim & Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie”, “Bullhead”, “Miss Bala”, “Cloud Atlas”, “Flight”, “The Comedy”, “Life of Pi”, “Rust & Bone”, and “The Central Park Five”.

I’m not against seeing “Les Miserables” and at the same time I’m not really interested in seeing it.

“Zero Dark Thirty”, I want to see it because it is getting such good reviews, but I’m not really psyched for it. It’s coming out around here in January anyway.

I think all told, I’ve seen about 45 movies from this year. It was a pretty good year for movies.

3 Responses to “KSWI Presents: Remebering The Second Half of 2012′s Movies”

  1. Kim said

    Love it!

    Also agree with your spot on mini-review of TDKR — my fave movie of the year. I think it was a near perfect ending to a great trilogy.

    Happy New Year – Cheers!

  2. PWG said

    Saw Django Unchained, and I did compare it to other Tarantino movies, unfavorably for the most part. It’s not that it was bad, it’s just that I love some other Tarantino movies so much. I was woefully unprepared to see Jamie Foxx’s ball sac, I’ll tell you that goddamn much. I spent the 30 seconds where it (they?) was on screen wondering, “Am I looking at Jamie Foxx’s ball sac?” Followed by, “Is that guy grabbing Jamie Foxx’s real, actual dick?” And how long can you film upside down, really? I mean they deliver one line, then what, lift Jamie back up to horizontal so the blood rushes out of his head, but leave his ankles tied so you don’t have to do THAT over and over, and then drop him back down for the rest? I don’t know, I was very concerned about the particulars of that scene.

    But seeing Christoph Waltz again made me realize how lucky Tarantino was to find that guy. Even when he’s not supposed to be stealing the scene he’s stealing the scene. The man is charismatic. The scene Tarantino shot from behind, where Waltz points just one finger on his upraised right hand over to his left hand . . . I wonder how many takes that took, it was perfect.

    So it was better than almost all the movies I did see this year, just not as good as Inglourious Basterds, Kill Bill, or Pulp Fiction. I’ll put it over Reservoir Dogs.

    Hobbit, I agree, Argo, I agree, Skyfall, I agree, Dark Knight Rises, I agree. Looper I didn’t really care for. Not going to see Jack Reacher, you can’t make me.

    I wasn’t prepared for The Dark Knight Rises to be my favorite movie this year. It was so good it made the first two better in retrospect, and they weren’t slouches the first time around. It was the only movie I saw this year where I felt like turning right around and watching it again immediately. The Bourne Legacy was better than I was expecting.

  3. PWG said

    This is what I got for Christmas, because my husband is awesome. Plus couches.

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