Cut To The Chase Review: Guardians of the Galaxy; Marvel’s Star Wars

Saturday, August 2nd, 2014


Cut To The Chase Reviews from COF are spoiler free reviews ‘abridged for your pleasure’. Quick, concise, and sometimes entertaining opinions on the go!


Setup:  I watched the movie in 3D and with assigned seating (due to an advanced ticket purchase) I was able to select my favorite spot:  back row, in the middle. It was a sold out show.

Rocket Raccoon: Why would you want to save the galaxy!?
Peter Quill: ‘Cause I’m one of the idiots who lives in it!

Review: Guardians of the Galaxy is a game changer for Marvel; it’s as irreverent and comical as you would expect judging from the fantastic trailers released this summer. Director James Gunn has told a visually enthralling story with so much humor and thrilling action that I can’t even remember a period of the film that slowed down. It never stopped to fill us in with obvious exposition, creating a natural progression to get us where we need to be. It’s a great reminder of what a comic movie should be: fun! Not just cross-branding commercials (Captain America: The Winter Soldier)

The movie is self-aware and full of pop references that hit home with more than one generation. It doesn’t feel like a Marvel movie or anything like a comic movie of the last few years. I for one am happy about that; I don’t know how much more grim, dark, and moody hero movies I could take. This movie has heart and balances that with the action and humor perfectly. Lastly, the main cast was exceptional; they were daring choices that should be admired. I can only think of one other movie that must have been this original and exciting to watch in a theater, and it came out in 1977. Guardians of the Galaxy is a weird roller coaster that anyone looking to step away from same old slate of comic movies should ride.

Stay during the credits? Yes.

Rating: 4.5 orbs out of 5



Book Review: The Art of the Films Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Rise of the Planet of the Apes

Monday, July 28th, 2014

The Art of the Films Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Leading up to the release of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Titan Books released an all new hardcover titled The Art of The Films Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Rise of the Planet of the Apes. My first impression when getting my hands on this book was how substantial it is. For those who have seen the film (read my review for more information) Dawn of the Planet of the Apes has fantastic visuals. This book does a fantastic job of highlighting this. Page by page it takes you up close with behind the scenes shots and stills straight from the movies. (more…)

Cut To The Chase Review: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Monday, July 28th, 2014

Dawn of The Planet of The Apes

Cut To The Chase Reviews from COF are spoiler free reviews ‘abridged for your pleasure’. Quick, concise, and sometimes entertaining opinions on the go!


For starters, my expectations for Rise of the Planet of the Apes were fairly low. It looked like a fun origin tale, but nothing to write home about – I certainly ate my words on that one. Rise was fun, fresh – and unlike Graham, I don’t have total disdain for James Franco and thought he did a fairly good job portraying Caesar’s teacher/father/friend. (more…)

The Transformers: The Movie: The Review

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

Transformers 6

There are definitely bigger fans of The Transformers out there than I.  Even though I born in their heyday I never gave them a lot of thought.  I never watched the show.  I never had any of the toys.  I never wanted to be Optimus Prime for Halloween.  However, I do recall seeing the 1986 movie at some point.  I suppose I must have liked it enough that when a special edition was released to coincide with Michael Bay’s first Transformers flick…I bought it.  I watched it once and stuck it back on the shelf, where it’s sat untouched since then. With last weekend’s release of Transformers: Age of Extinction I thought this would be a good time to revisit what is still probably the best Transformers film. So join me as I sit down to re-watch The Transformers: The Movie.


Fun With Short Films – The Gunfighter

Friday, June 27th, 2014


I feel like you either love westerns or hate them. Growing up on a steady diet of Tombstone, The Quick and the Dead, and Young Guns – I have an appreciation for the pseudo modern western genre. Why The Quick and the Dead you may ask? I have no idea. I don’t particularly buy Sharon Stone as a wild west outlaw. Wow that was an off topic rant – lets move on.

The Gunfighter is nothing like those other westerns, which I wasn’t sure if I would like. The Gunfighter is very much a comedy that almost has the feel of the Abbott and Costello “Who’s at First?” bit. The joke wasn’t at all the same, but the setup and the tone was somewhat reminiscent.

Starring the voice of Nick Offerman as ‘The Narrator’, he really sets the tone for the type of comedy being told in this short. It’s not just the star that sets The Gunfighter apart from other short films. The quality of the lighting and cinematography are top notch and of that you would expect to see in a big budget film.
The Gunfighter clocks in at approximately 8 minutes and provides a brand of comedy to short films that is truly rare to find. Check it out after the jump! (more…)

Book Review: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – Firestorm

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014


Titan Books sent us a copy of the official movie prequel to the eagerly anticipated Dawn of the Planet of the Apes movie, scheduled for release in July 2014. The book is in available now.

apes-sideNew York Times bestselling author Greg Keyes brings us the original Apes story. He bridges the gap between the events of Rise of the Planet of the Apes and the anticipated sequel Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. This book only outlines the very early beginnings of Caesar’s colony and not the full ten years. Ape characters from Rise appear and us as the readers are given a bit of backstory on quite a number of the characters including Koba and Cornelia and are given glimpses of their personalities that are likley to flow into Dawn when the film is released.

It’s an entertaining and engrossing read that went by very fast. It’s a short read which made it all the more difficult to put it down. The prequel gives a lot of insight to the upcoming conflict; I suspect they might even use the events of this book as a narration talking point that start the movie. It’s very smart and it’s clear that Keyes cared about this material enough to craft out an emotional and entertaining tale that delves into social, political, and scientific issues that more that resonate with what’s happening today. I recommend it for any Planet of the Apes fans who wanted to know a little more of the Planet of the Apes mythos. The question at the end of the book which you might be able to answer by the time the credits roll on the new film is will you cheer for the apes or cheer for humanity?

Buy it today!

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Book Review: Resistance by Samit Basu

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014


Titan Books sent us an advanced copy of Resistance by Samit Basu, here is our review.

In Resistance it’s been eleven years since the events in Samit Basu’s Turbulence. It’s 2020 and the world is overrun with supers. Some use their powers for good, others for evil, and unsurprisingly some just want to destroy monuments and resistance-sidestar in their own reality show. In Turbulence we were introduced to The Unit, a group of oddly endowed superheroes with powers that are derived from personality and desire. That same group now has to stop someone who, from New York to Tokyo, is hunting down supers, killing off heroes and villains.

If you enjoyed Samit Basu’s Turbulence, you are not alone. It was enjoyable and surprisingly original in a world of entertainment when you blink and have a new superhero movie. He has a sense of pop culture that still jumps out with Resistance. With great heroics and fantastic action scenes (which are never easy to write), it’s safe to say this might top his first outing. It’s a great read that spans the world and somehow manages to keep things organized and highly entertaining without skipping a beat. I trust Basu is more confident in his writing this time around offering more wit and cinematic like sequences with new characters that jump off the page.

I said it at the end of my review for Turbulence and I’ll say it again here: I’m looking forward to the sequel already.

Resistance will be released on July 8, 2014. Pre-order it today!

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Book Review: Godzilla – The Official Movie Novelization

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014


Titan books sent along the official novelization of Gareth Edwards’ Godzilla by Greg Cox. The movie was released on May 16, 2014 and this book is available now.

godzilla-sideThis summer saw the epic rebirth of Toho’s iconic Godzilla; this spectacular adventure pits the world’s most famous monster against malevolent creatures who, bolstered by humanity’s scientific arrogance, threaten our very existence. This companion book offers little difference from the exceptional film, although I will say it makes some characters more important. It’s still an exciting read but if you have seen the movie or plan on it (you should) then this might just be for people who really like to read over going to the crowded theater.

Novelizations are usually paint-by-the-numbers reads that don’t deliver the same level of entertainment than its awe-inspiring production counterpart. It was the same with Man of Steel and now Godzilla.
If you liked the movie you’ll probably appreciate Cox’s presentation of a story-line that many thought to drag in crucial spots on the big screen; it’s a straightforward novelization otherwise.

Buy it today!

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Cut To The Chase Review: 22 JUMP STREET – The Great Bromantic Comedy

Sunday, June 15th, 2014


Cut To The Chase Reviews from COF are spoiler free reviews ‘abridged for your pleasure’. Quick, concise, and sometimes entertaining opinions on the go!


When I reviewed 21 Jump Street I said it was “smart to embrace everything we love and should hate about TV shows and movies”. With 22 Jump Street, it manages to do the same for sequels with Phil Lord and Chris Miller proving to be the best comedy directors working today. There’s even more the bromance to love and over the top action sequences to laugh along with.

It’s because of its good natured humor and subsequent vulgarity that 22 Jump Street outshines the first installment. This movie knows about sequels and does everything it can to point out how cheap and familiar this movie COULD feel; it side steps that pressure with a brilliant self-aware attitude, comedic timing, and a the chemistry from its leads that can’t be matched.

22 Jump Street somehow manages to be more inventive than the first film integrating action and comedy in better ways (albeit more outrageous) and giving a middle finger to a same system it’s in business with.

You should get to know Phil Lord:


+ The end credit sequence
+ Tatum and Hill a winning double act
+ Consistently funny
- Some repetitive jokes

Final Score: 9/10


Starting From Scratch Never Tasted So Good – Chef the Movie Review

Friday, May 30th, 2014

Chef Movie Review

This week I was lucky enough to be invited to see a sneak preview of the new Jon Favreau film, Chef, aptly named, about a chef who loses his restaurant job and starts up a food truck in an effort to reclaim his creativity, while piecing back together his estranged family.

With a cast of names involved like: John Leguizamo, Scarlett Johansson, Robert Downey Jr., Dustin Hoffman, and Oliver Platt, I was really curious and looking forward to this movie, which quite simply, didn’t disappoint. In fact, it had the opposite effect on me and presumably the entire theatre, who erupted in a room full of applause (yes, that still happens) when the movie credits rolled up.