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Michael Peña

The Martian Review

The Martian Review

RATING: (3 STARS) In Stanley Kubrick’s epic space saga, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Strauss’ “Blue Danube Waltz” plays over a famous docking sequence. In Ridley Scott’s The Martian, a critical docking sequence is scored by David Bowie’s “Starman.” The differences go on, but perhaps it’s this one that best demonstrates what Scott is going for […]

Ant-Man Review

Ant-Man Review

RATING: (3.5 STARS) In Marvel’s Ant-Man, the wise father figure character informs our hero that the world of the quantum is totally unknown by man. Its real-life equivalent, then, might be Ant-Man‘s pre-production story. The great Edgar Wright wrote a screenplay for Marvel’s smallest superhero alongside Attack the Block‘s Joe Cornish. Wright was also attached […]

American Hustle Review

American Hustle Review

RATING: (3.5 STARS) Of many great pleasures found in David O. Russell’s latest, American Hustle, the greatest is watching not one, not two, not three, not four, but FIVE talented actors give truly exceptional performances. Jeremy Renner is the only Russell newcomer, as the Silver Linings Playbook and The Fighter helmer has brought together an […]

Tower Heist Review

Tower Heist Review

RATING: (3 STARS) In a post-Bernie Madoff world, it’s hard not to enjoy Tower Heist at least a little. Yes, it’s a heist film with plot holes the size of craters and leaps in logic Evel Knievel and his motorcycle couldn’t jump. But there’s a great deal of pleasure in seeing a corrupt billionaire get […]

Everything Must Go Review

Everything Must Go Review

RATING: (2.5 STARS) There’s a point in almost every comedian’s career at which he decides it’s time to get serious. Adam Sandler had Punch-Drunk Love. Jim Carrey had The Truman Show. Robin Williams had Dead Poets Society. Now, Will Ferrell has Everything Must Go. The film, writer/director Dan Rush’s debut, is completely devoid of Ferrell’s […]

The Lincoln Lawyer Review

The Lincoln Lawyer Review

RATING: (3 STARS) The Lincoln Lawyer is the perfect kind of March movie. It’s not all that challenging, and it follows the formula of its genre to a T, but it’s quite entertaining. The script is well-developed, and Matthew McConaughey—yes, that Matthew McConaughey—turns out a surprisingly good performance. The ending tries too hard to wrap […]

Battle: Los Angeles Review

Battle: Los Angeles Review

RATING: (2.5 STARS) Battle: Los Angeles, I think, is a fair approximation of what would happen if aliens invaded the world of 24. The film is full of one-dimensional freedom fighters, as well as a badass, capable-of-anything superman. But it’s entertaining in a mindless sort of way. It definitely doesn’t live up to its amazing […]