Tag Archives: Paul Rudd

Ant-Man ***

IMDB Synopsis: Armed with a super-suit with the astonishing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, cat burglar Scott Lang must embrace his inner hero and help his mentor, Dr. Hank Pym, plan and pull off a heist that will save the world.

“Ant-Man” is the latest entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It introduces to titular Ant-Man, also known as Scott Lang. Ant-Man wears a suit that has the ability to shrink down to the size of a bean as well as giving him control over insects. Lang is played by Paul Rudd, who brings his comedic sensibilities to turn in a fun and exciting performance in a refreshingly original super hero movie.

His nemesis is Darren Cross, aka, Yellowjackets. Cross has created a similar suit with more fire power. This sets the stage for some truly exciting and visually stunning action sequences that involve some very unexpected sets. You will never look at Thomas The Tank Engine the same way after this film.

Michael Douglas and Evangeline Lilly play Hank Pym and his daughter Hope Van Dyne. Pym was the previous owner of the Ant-Man suit and his daughter has eyes on her own adventures in the future.

The director is Peyton Reid, who makes a pretty solid transition from mostly comedies to a big budget Marvel film and he pulls it off rather well. The film is not without it’s flaws though. It is an origin story which I think people are starting to get bored of and there are a few unnecessary moments where they try to connect to the Avengers that were not needed. But those were small gripes. This is a fun and exciting film.

Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues ***

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It has been a long time coming and it is finally here! “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues” has arrived with a wave of hype. It is a sequel to a now classic comedy from way back in 2004. When “Anchorman” debuted all those years ago it found moderate success in theatres and big success on home video. I still quote that film and re-watch it to this day. The sequel is not quite as memorable but is just about as funny.

Will Ferrell, Paul Rudd, Steve Carell and David Koechner return to join the world’s first 24 hours news network. Basically they do a parody of CNN and Fox News, which are hilarious to watch in their own right.

When we catch up with Burgundy he has just lost his dream job to his wife Veronica, who has left him after his selfish reaction. He has not seen their son in a few months. He is down and out, working a dead end job at sea world. This is when he is discovered by a recruiter for GNN. He takes the job and immediately recruits his old news team to try and make a splash in New York. This results in some outrageous laughs when they realize if they make the news entertaining and stupid, then their ratings will sky rocket. I especially laughed my ass off when the team hears the new fad on the streets is to smoke crack and decide to try it on the air. “Oh you feel that right away” say Burgundy as he takes a hit from a pipe.

If you loved the first “Anchorman” then there is no reason you should not see this in theatres. It is mostly funny and some times hysterical. Ferrell and his cohorts look a little older but their humour have not skipped a beat. I certainly hope that this is not the final chapter in the life of Ron Burgundy.

All Is Bright **1/2

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“All Is Bright” is a nice little comedy about a down on his luck ex con who works selling christmas trees in an attempt to buy his estranged daughter a present. Directed by Phil Morrison, who directed the 2006 movie Junebug, “All Is Bright” relies on two quirky performances by Paul Giamatti and Paul Rudd, who travel from Canada to New York to setup a shabby looking camp of trees for the holidays.

Nobody can play down on his luck like Giamatti can. Here he looks borderline homeless. He sees the christmas tree business as a get rich quick scheme so he can buys his daughter a piano. Rudd is an old friend and is currently dating Giamatti’s wife. It is an odd relationship that becomes quite strained which seems natural considering Giamatti is trying to reconcile with his wife.

“All Is Bright” isn’t quite “Bad Santa”, but it is a holiday movie for adults with a lot of R rated humor. I is not too memorable but if you are looking for some solid laughs with a healthy dose of drama this might be your ticket.

Prince Avalanche ***1/2

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“Prince Avalanche” is a return to form for director “David Gordon Green”. Green started out making truly amazing films like “George Washington” and “All The Real Girls” but lately he has been stuck making dreary studio comedies like “Your Highness” and “The Sitter”.

This movie finds the talented director taking the minimalist approach. The story is about two road workers played by Paul Rudd and Emile Hirsch, who are at different points in their lives emotionally, who go through a series of emotional episodes with each other. Ultimately they bond and form one of the more odd friendships that I have seen in the movies.

Rudd plays Alvin, a man who seems to be constantly trying to find inner peace by constantly taking jobs that put him in to isolation from his girlfriend. Hirsch plays Lance, who is his girlfriends little brother. Lance lives for his weekends chasing girls and partying. But he is about to receive news that will change his life.

Alvin and Lance work painting lines down a road. This specific area has recently been the victim of a major forrest fire. Along the way they encounter people who have lost their entire homes and lively hoods in this disaster. This adds a sort of undercurrent of sadness that kind of makes their personal issues seem pale in comparison.

Wikipedia says that Green shot this movie in secret. It was only announced after it’s completion which is rare. It is almost like Green was making some sort of covert escape from the big studios. I for one am glad he is back. Even from a visual stand point it is nice to see him creating visual poetry as opposed to excess.

After a summer that has been almost over filled with big action spectacles, it is nice to simply engage two characters on a personal level and watch as they grow together a little bit.

This Is The End ***1/2

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Who would of thought that “This Is The End” would end up being the funniest and most outrageous comedy of 2013 so far? I thought the trailers kind of seemed like this was some kind of gag. A group of comedic actors play themselves in a movie about the apocalypse?! How wrong I was. I’m actually grateful that the marketing campaign did not ruin any of the funniest moments in this movie.

The main characters are Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, James Franco, Craig Robinson and Danny McBride. Rogen and Baruchel are long time friends who end up at a house warming party at Franco’s place. The party is attended by pretty much every celebrity who has had a role in a Judd Appatow production. My favourite had to be a coked out Michael Cera who loses his cell phone.

During the party, the world outside begins to fall apart. Los Angeles turns in to ash and smoke. Some citizens are beamed in to the sky by blue lights. Eventually monsters and demons start roaming the streets, chasing down the survivors.

The majority of the movie follows Rogen and his friends as they bored up Franco’s house and attempt to wait the situation out. This results in some hilarious situations as these inflated egos try to survive each other. Eventually they have to survive McBride and his raunchy, over the top behaviour.

Now going in to this movie I did not expect to laugh as loudly as I did. I don’t think I have laughed this much since “Ted”. What a refreshing thing laughter can be, especially after duds like “The Hangover Part III”.

I was also impressed by how freaky the film was. Seth Rogen and his parter Evan Goldberg both wrote and directed this film. I was fairly surprised that they went all out on trying to scare the audience as well as make them laugh. The visual effects are pretty effective as well.

“This Is The End” will appeal to anyone who likes a good R rated raunch fest. This movie has it all.

This Is 40 ***

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“This Is 40” is the latest movie from writer, director Judd Apatow. It depicts a married couple dealing with middle age, financial difficulties, kids approaching puberty as well as other surprises that I will not reveal.

Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann are reprising their roles from Apatow’s “Knocked Up” as Debbie and Pete. This time they are the focus of the story. Pete is running his own record label which is on the brink of going under and Debbie is operating a struggling clothing store. They are not exactly up front with each other about their respective business’ financial situations. They are more concerned with making this work at home where their marriage is experience a lot of sharp ups and downs, which is also how I felt about the movie in general.

Now I can see what Apatow is trying to pull off here I just wish that there was more of an actual narrative to follow. The film is basically a series of funny set pieces that don’t really add up to much. The characters are vivid and real as is the dialogue and the performances but at over two hours not a lot is concluded.

My other problem with the movie is that this story is that it seems to be about a family living in excess. I think this might of been more effective if it was about an actual working class family. It is kind of hard to feel for a household that is struggling financially while they drive their expensive cars and horde their pricy apple products around. Imagine the same movie except the father worked at a grocery store and the mother didn’t exactly own the clothing store.

I am recommending the movie based on the fact that I laughed and enjoyed the characters. I just think that there was a missed opportunity here.

Wanderlust ***

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“Wanderlust” is a nice fantasy comedy about New York couple that lose their jobs and homes and decide to move in to a Hippie Commune and try living without technology. The result is a sweet and funny comedy.

Jennifer Aniston and Paul Rudd are built for this type of role and they make the most of it. I think that audiences will go to see this movie for them alone and be startled by the amount of full frontal male nudity. I’m not about double standards or anything it is just that male nudity is not very common these days.

The movie is definitely a fantasy. It plays it safe instead of looking at real people who are suffering from harsh economic times. I almost think there is a missed opportunity here but I still enjoyed this movie for what it was.