30 Minutes or Less Review

It’s truly hard to put my finger on exactly how I felt about 30 Minutes or Less. I found my self enjoying a handful of scenes during this movie which was surprising because it clearly is not a very good movie. The execution during parts were certainly on, but during others it just seemed like they were striving to have a coherent story when in fact it was just falling a part. 30 Minutes or Less was just a very odd, dark and a subpar comedy with some fun action thrown in the mix.

First off, knowing that this is actually based on a true and very disturbing story just makes you uncomfortable to be watching the situation being made light of. Looking passed that though, the fun of this film came from the pair Aziz Ansari and Jesse Eisenberg. The delivery was there with both of them and they were very funny.

There’s this belief in regards to performance sometimes that essentially states ones voice is the same as portraying a character. Though Jack Torrance (The Shining) and R.P. McMurphy (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest) have the same unique voice, they are two completely different characters played to perfection by Jack Nicholson. No, Jesse Eisenberg’s performances aren’t to the caliber of Jack Nicholson, but he does however do a great job here portraying a different character from his other roles.

The pair in this film are not so enjoyable (Danny McBride and Nick Swardson). I for one do not find Nick Swardson very funny at all regardless of the role he’s playing. I’m open for surprise, but with his character here, I got what was expected; a bad comedic performance. The same could really be said about Danny McBride, I get what he’s going for, but its simply not that funny. Whereas his comedy might work in some aspects in a great comedy like Pineapple Express, it really doesn’t work in a subpar comedy like this.

At the end of the day, if you go see 30 Minutes or Less you might laugh occasionally, you might be entertained at other points (the actual robbery, the car chases, some of the story driven scenes between Jesse and Aziz), but at some point, most likely, the obvious fact will be realized; you’d rather be watching something better.

Grade: C

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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II Review

In this review of the second and last part of the finale of the series, Harry Potter, I’d like to express my views on the not only this part, but the first part and the series of films in general. I’d first like to take this opportunity to say that I have never read the books. This puts me in the rare position to actually judge these films with out a bias love for these generational books. This is all to say that I for one do not find the Harry Potter films very good.

Its been told to me on many occasions that I can’t judge these films with out reading the books as if to say that I need to read the books to find the good filmmaking in the films. Its a comment like that, that only furthers my arguments against these films. It doesn’t matter what the film is based off, any film should be judged based on how well it was made, the ideas it trys to establish, how it entertains you, etc. If a film has to rely on a separate art form to prevail than it shouldn’t have been made in the first place.

This is not to say that I absolutely hate the Harry Potter films because I don’t. They are just not very good movies. Some of the story lines are compelling, others aren’t and others could’ve been but were executed horribly. Some characters are very interesting while others are annoying. Oh and some of the performances are phenomenal (particularly the adult cast; especially Ralph Fiennes), while others certainly are not (particularly the main characters).

Either way let’s get into Deathly Hallows. In part one of this final film you could find everything that makes for a bad Harry Potter film; the unbelievable melodrama, the failed attempts at humor due to writing and awful delivery, but most of all the exploration of characters that just aren’t interesting. Rarely was I ever enjoying what was occurring in Part I and I understood why it was being told, but for the most part I just wasn’t entertained with what was being told. And there was no art in the film to outweigh that fact.

Where as Part I might just be the worst Harry Potter film I’ve seen, Part II of Deathly Hallows was the best Harry Potter film I’ve seen. It was in no way an amazing movie, I could sit here all day and express my problems with this series and even this specific film, but I will say that I was never more entertained by Harry Potter film than when I watched Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II.

The greatest pro of this series is in its awesome villain and to finally see his rise and expected fall was very compelling especially when he’s played by one of the greatest actors working today (Ralph Fiennes). I’ve also been a big fan of Snape and Alan Rickman’s portrayal. He has a much larger part in this one and it worked well. There are other positive remarks I could talk about and there were definitely negatives I could go into and even some story aspects that I hated (mainly that our hero whom I’m supposed to be rooting for wins on a technicality), but I will say that no I do not like the Harry Potter movies, but this last one was kind of cool.

Grade: B- (Part II)

Part I Grade: D

Deathly Hallows Grade: C