Tag Archives: Alan Tudyk

Review: Frozen

Frozen_PosterBetter prepare yourself for many days’ worth of running around singing, “Let it go, let it go,” because there’s no way you’re walking out of “Frozen” without a pep in your step, massive smile on your face and the desire to build a snowman.

“Frozen” features the voices of Kristen Bell and Idina Menzel as Anna and Elsa, the princess of Arendelle. As kids, Anna and Elsa are inseparable. But, when Elsa realizes that she’s got the ability to create snow and ice, she also realizes that her newfound powers put her loved ones at risk. In an effort to keep Anna safe, Elsa takes off into the mountains, but buries a summertime Arendelle in a winter’s worth of elements along the way. Now, with the help of a mountain man named Kristoff (Jonathan Groff), his lovable and loyal reindeer Sven, and Olaf (Josh Gad), a snowman with a thing for summer, Anna must trek up the mountain and convince her sister to thaw their home.

Writer-directors Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee cracked “The Snow Queen.” Disney’s been trying to develop a big screen version of the Hans Christian Andersen story for quite some time and while “Frozen” is far from a straightforward adaptation of that work, the deviations are brilliant and turn the final feature into a piece that’s got a classical appeal, but also wholly relatable modern twists.

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Review: Wreck-It Ralph

Watch out, parents. After catching “Wreck-It Ralph” you might have some kids hoping to grow up and work in the game industry, and I mean <I>inside</I> the game industry.

Ralph (John C. Reilly) may be the title character of the old school arcade game Wreck-It Ralph, but he’s certainly not the star. Ralph does his duty and wrecks the apartment building so Felix (Jack McBrayer) can swoop in, fix it and get his medal, but it doesn’t end at game over. Even during the arcade’s off hours, the apartment dwellers still treat Ralph like a big, bad villain and Ralph just can’t take it anymore. He ditches his tree stump and heads to Game Central Station in search of a game in which he finally can win his medal.

Sounds a little simplistic, doesn’t it? Well, that’s part of the beauty of “Wreck-It Ralph;” it truly is a movie for the whole family. The visuals are vibrant, the characters are charming, the jokes are silly and Ralph’s goal is as clear as can be, but the film still has a great deal of depth including game-related homages, identity crises, high stakes and more.

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Review: Tucker & Dale vs. Evil

In an industry with a tendency to use, reuse and then reuse yet again, a film that defies typical tactics is particularly exciting. In the case of Tucker & Dale vs. Evil, we don’t just get a piece that attempts to purport something new; we get something that takes a common horror movie element, pumps it full of absurdity, blood and even some heart, shakes it up and then hands over the result – a charming spoof that’s a blast to watch.

Decked out in overalls, plaid shirts and trucker hats with scruffy beards, Tucker and Dale (Alan Tudyk and Tyler Labine) are your quintessential hillbillies. When a group of, well, quintessential college kids head out into the woods for a wild weekend, they take Tucker and Dale for just that, a pair of evil killers à la the slew of middle-of-nowhere horror movies. Meanwhile, all Tucker and Dale are trying to do is enjoy a relaxing weekend away while fixing up their new vacation home.

During a fishing break, Tucker and Dale catch the group enjoying a skinny-dipping soiree. When one of the bunch, Allison (Katrina Bowden), hits her head jumping into the lake, Tucker and Dale come to her rescue. However, all Allison’s buddies see is a pair of hillbillies dragging their lifeless friend out of the water. While Tucker and Dale try to nurse her back to health, the college kids arm up in attempt to rescue Allison. It’s one big misunderstanding with immensely bloody consequences.

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Review: Transformers: Dark of the Moon

I love chocolate cake. When I eat too much chocolate cake, I feel sick and don’t love it much anymore. I like visually stimulating imagery in movies. When I see too much visually stimulating imagery, in 3D nonetheless, I feel sick and don’t love it much anymore. Hopefully Michael Bay doesn’t love chocolate cake as much as he loves tracking shots and dizzying robot battles or he’d have a morbidly obese problem on his hands.

Transformers: Dark of the Moon suggests that Apollo 11 really flew to the moon to investigate a mysterious spacecraft crash. Turns out, that spacecraft is from Cybertron and carries an Autobot technology with the power to save their race. However, years later, the government has neatly tucked away this little bit of info, and Optimus Prime, Bumblee and the other Autobots are committed to living on earth, assisting the US military.

Meanwhile, Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) is a recent college graduate trying to secure his first post-school job, but unfortunately, his Ivy League diploma and medal from the president don’t bear as much weight as he hopes. On the bright side, Sam had no trouble replacing Mikaela (Megan Fox) with yet another woman way out of his league, Carly (Rosie Huntington-Whiteley). She’s got a high-paying position working for Dylan (Patrick Dempsey), a car-collecting hotshot, who’s generous enough to give Carly a paycheck that supports both her and Sam. Believing this is no life for a former hero, Sam is desperate for the day he can jump back into the action with the Autobots and, thanks to a piece of that Cybertron spacecraft surfacing in Chernobyl, he’ll get that chance soon enough.

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Review: Beautiful Boy

Tackling inherently emotional and real material on the big screen is nearly impossible. No matter how you approach it, there will always be someone to say the situation was misrepresented or sensationalized. While that is the case to a point with Beautiful Boy, the performances are so captivating, it’s possible to push that instinctive judgment aside.

Moody kids call home from college all the time; they’re stressed over an upcoming exam, having trouble with friends or perhaps are just a little homesick. But little did Kate and Bill Carroll (Maria Bello and Michael Sheen) know that when their son, Sam (Kyle Gallner), finally decided to return their calls, he wasn’t just frazzled over typical college pressures. The morning following their phone call, Kate and Bill got word that a crazed gunman struck on Sam’s college campus and that the gunman was their son.

Not only must they mourn the loss of their only child, but fight off news hungry reporters, angry neighbors and Sam’s distraught classmates all while trying to figure out whether this was their fault. Kate’s brother offers to take them in to avoid the news crews camped out on their lawn, but even in the safety of his home, their marital troubles, the presence of Kate’s young nephew and the constant news reports painting their little boy as a heartless murderer consume them.

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