Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates

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I know, suck another one up for the team. This one tries so hard to be like it’s goofball adolescent predecessors that it misses the mark.  Chemistry is off with all the actors. The two girls are trying hard to be Romy and Michelle while the boys are trying to be Dumb and Dumber.  The story tries to stay the course and roams between dumb fun, wanting to get a message across and ridiculous.  I often felt there were 3 different movies going on at one time and the editor couldn’t decide which way to go. What’s really disappointing is Zac Effron has been in some really good but not well attended movies (ie orsen wells).  I’d hate to seem him desert his talents and start going off on this track.  Even taking his shirt off and a few dance steps didn’t redeem this misstep for me.  If you feel compelled to see it, or are purely desperate, wait to stream it and make a drinking game out of it then it might be date night worthy.

Warcraft

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Let’s just say, I took one for the team in seeing this one.  Perhaps it’s more interesting if you know the game.  As an outsider I saw shades of The Hobbit, King Arthur, and all the other pointless British battle movies rolled into one with a touch of magic.  Knowing something about video games, I thought there would be more twist and turns and perhaps magical boxes to be captured, or more of a story line. Yes, the animation was amazing but, this one is truly for the guys who are into all that…truth be told, I would have expected more sexy girls knowing that’s what they like with their wars.  This one is for the boys, sorry, not date worthy.

Captain Fantastic

Interesting one to take my parents to as it was all about parenting.  Great statements made providing room for interesting discussion after.  Who learns a lesson in this family, the father who is left to question whether or not his wife has agreed with his choices in child rearing, the kids who get a taste of the world around them or relatives who are schooled in alternative teachings?  What is the value of standard education?  So many points of discussion.  However, like a novel, the movie was a long journey, you must be prepared to sit through it!  Fun quirky moments are few and far between but enjoyable when they occur.  Viggo Mortensen provides a strong steady performance.  The kids are terrific – especially of note is the maturing of the oldest boy, they are so pure and honest in their acting you truly believe this is a family.  Setting is beautiful but feels like it tries too hard to be another character in the story.  Can definitely wait to stream vs theater.  Not really date night but certainly one to take a prospective partner to and discuss your future together … with kids.

Now You See Me 2

Having not known about the first in this series, I didn’t seem to miss a beat. With a talented cast, masterful director and fun special effects how can you not enjoy this film?   Oceans 11 meets Leverage (TV show) meets comic book superhero’s with the addition of magic  it was action packed.  Mark Ruffalo as yet another “superhero” of sorts, what’s not to love!  The only thing annoyingly distracting is Woody Harrelson’s obnoxiously white teeth when playing his twin.  Lizzy Caplan is a delight and keeps up with the boys.  Magic becomes a fun character and you have the added benefit of some fun reveals.  Yes, date night worthy!

Me Before You

Unfortunately the story has been told before in other films so if you’re looking for something new, this isn’t the film for you.  Even the delightfully quirky lead Emilia Clarke isn’t very inspired, although I did enjoy her offbeat sense of style.She seems oddly matched with the debonair Sam Clafin, almost like watching a 14 year old with a late 20 thirty something.  Characters lack strong arc while the scenery/setting is often beautiful.  Music tends to via for attention leaving the actors painfully long interludes of sameness.  It’s a romantic wanna be whose only redemption is causing one to think about and possibly discuss “end of life” choices.  Date night, no, girls night with drinks, yes, streaming (guess you can’t say on video anymore)!

Our Kind of Traitor

Dreary is the only word that comes to mind.  I love Ewan McGregor and really enjoyed seeing him go head to head with Stellan Skarsgard and am now a fan of Naomie Harris.  Damian Lewis does a reasonable job as an MI6 agent but seems out of place and never really completes a characters journey.  The film is somewhat predictable, almost clumsy and like the setting, just dreary.  Is it the writing or the lackluster directing that works towards a climax but never reaches the excitement of others in it’s category? Date night only from the perspective of not having to pay attention to the film.

Her

Well, this one took my breath away. Joaquin Phoenix was masterful in just being him.  He had depth and did a great job acting “on his own”.  Scarlett Johansson, same thing.  The reason the story worked for me is it addressed the loneliness a relationship can fill and the curvature of growth coupled with the dangers of modern technology leaving you to live in your own world.  Everything worked well from cinematography to music and direction.  Grab the girls, wine and enjoy!  Not sure the guys will sit through this sweet one.