Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales — A Review

Last Saturday, I had the opportunity to take my two boys, Andy and Joey, to see the movie Pirates of the Caribbeans: Dead Men Tell No Tales. There are so few movies that I want to see, I was hopeful that this one would be agreeable to all three of us. Well, let’s just say that I was duly disappointed. I felt like it was just one rehashed scene after another. However, the ending was quite satisfactory and gave the impression that Disney would be letting the series lie dormant for the near future. That might be a good idea and give the writers a chance to… rediscover their creative juices, so to speak.

But given that I was rather bored with the movie, I thought I would have Andy and Joey write a review for those of you who have not yet seen the movie. I had both of them write what they liked and didn’t like about the movie. Remember that they are 12 and 10 respectively, so their discernment when it comes to movies is lacking, along with much of their spelling. We’ll have to work on both of those as they grow and mature. Realize that Andy is dyslexic, so his spelling is atrocious. But I love what he writes because it makes more of a statement about the movie that he realizes. Spoiler alert, he revels something about the ending. Here are Andy’s thoughts:

I’m Andrew H. and I saw the pirits of the cairedeian. The first thing that I liked was the add (advertisement about) spiderman! It looked so cool and I encerig (encourage) you all to watch it. What I didn’t like was the fack (that) some guys came back from the dead to kill someone that kreeps me out! It also had Captain Barbosse die wiche relly disterb me! I geus the ending was good but that’s about it!

Just that fact that he loves the preview of Spider-Man tells you something about the movie we paid to see. Here are Joey’s thoughts:

Today I watched a cool movie about piraites called “piraites of the caribian” (4th movie) I liked many part in it one of the parts was at the begining where Jack Sparro (A.K.A Johnny Depp) and his crew took horses and hooked them all together connected to a safe (1T) in  a building, but the safe would not come out of the building so they ended up pulling a bank accross town. I didn’t really have any dislikes in the move and thats what made it a good movie.

The parenthetical thoughts are Joey’s not mine. In Andy’s, they were mine. I’m not sure what Joey meant by (1T).

All this to say, Joey gave it a thumbs up, and Andy gave it a thumbs sideways. I think anyone who has yet to see it should save their money and wait for it to come out on Netflix. You don’t have Netflix? Well then, you are blessed indeed, because you are now under no obligation whatsoever to watch the latest edition of Pirates of the Caribbean (actually the 5th… and hopefully, last installment).

One last addition: Joey gave me an illustration for his review.

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The Gospel According to Willy Wonka

I was taking my classes through the play Charlie and the Chocolate Factory when we came to a question about symbolism. I really haven’t said a lot about symbolism, so I wasn’t expecting much from them. Then I started thinking about the symbolism and it occurred to me that the story is an allegory for the gospel itself. I’m certainly not the first person to come up with this understanding of the play. Others have made the case, if you do a search of my title, you can find them.

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Hear Him!

A friend on FB was blasted when she decried another movie about a girl who died and went to heaven, and then came back again to make millions on the story. This latest movie is being put together by T.D. JakesWe should not be surprised that Jakes wants to cash in on the new wave of heavenly tourism that is sweeping the nation.

These stories are basically the same: person dies, goes to heaven, sees Jesus riding a pink orangutang, or some such nonsense and then they return from heaven where the next sound heard is that of the cash register. Never mind that the Apostle Paul was caught up into the third heaven, and said it was unlawful for any man to speak of what he saw.

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The Veggies Tales Rejection

The boys grew up watching Veggie Tales, the movies, the episodes, the works. It was only a few short years ago that Andy and I were anticipating the release of their last movie, hoping to catch it in the theaters. We missed it. It must have lasted about 2 days in the theaters because we never heard a word about it.

We did get their last movie on DVD. Andy and Joey loved it. However, over the last two years, since they have grown up and all, they have completely rejected the entire Veggies Tales collection! Actually, last year they protested the movies and episodes but would still watch it if I put it on. That was a little game I loved to play. Listen to them complain and watch them plop down on the couch nonetheless.

That came to an end this morning. Both boys flat out rejected my attempts to get them to sit down and watch it. Their rejection was complete! I can’t help but chuckle.

Now for the kicker: they both refused to watch it or even be in the house while it was on. They are outside playing, leaving me in Veggie Tales peace!

A Review of Reviews for Exodus: Gods and Kings.

As many of you know, the movie Exodus: Gods and Kings… was released this past weekend to a plethora of reviews and criticism. I have no plans on seeing the movie simply because I don’t think Hollywood can make a decent movie about something out of the Bible. Plus, from the reviews that I have read, there just isn’t any compelling reason to go and see it.

Al Mohler did say that if you were mature enough, it might be an ok movie. But I think he really captured it when he quoted another reviewer:

The best single line analysis of the movie and its failure to garner either critical acclaim or more viewers was offered by Eric D. Snider of GeekNation: “This big dud isn’t blasphemous enough to be outrageous, emotional enough to be inspiring, or interesting enough to be good.”

Given that, I would say that Mohler is actually giving the movie a thumbs down.

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New York and the Movies

I watch a lot of science fiction movies because I like the genre. By doing so, I have come to the conclusion that the one city you do not want to live in, in the science fiction/super hero world, is New York City. Just think about how many times we’ve seen New York City blown to bits because it was getting invaded by aliens from another world, or got hit by a giant tsunami or turned into a penal colony. New York is not a great place to live, just because it is faced with the burden of the backdrop for hundreds of sci-fi/action-hero based movies.

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Top 10 Guy Movies of All Time, According to Timothy

Well, since in posted my top 10 chick flicks of all time, I thought it only just and right to attempt to post my top 10 guy movies of all time. Please note that this is a real challenge since there are so many great guy movies out, compared to chick flicks. After all, once you have seen one chick flick, you get the idea. It’s only a variation between actors and supposed outcomes. Basic plot line: boy meets girl, conflict arise, conflict subsides, happily ever after.

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Argo, Russia the Ukraine

ArgoIt’s becoming obvious that if you want an up-to-date movie review, Timothy Matters is not the place be. I rarely go to movies when they first hit the big screen because of the expense. Yes, I do go to the matinees when I go, but I also insist on popcorn, candy  and a drink so I can enjoy the full-movie experience.

It’s much cheaper to go through Netflix to watch all the latest movies. This week, I’ve watched Argo and Lawless. Both were exceedingly well done and had me on the edge of my couch. Actually, that’s not true. During Argo, I jumped up several times to pace back and forth, so technically I wasn’t on the edge of my seat.

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The Life of Pi

life_of_piI finally got around to watching the movie Saturday night. I know, I should have been watching Turner Broadcasting and their non-stop Second-Commandment-Breaking Jesus-watch-athon. But I don’t have cable and I do have Netflix.

I heard the movie was good when it came out, but knew nothing of the plot or circumstances. I was surprised that it was about a Hindu Indian boy who becomes a Christian and then a Muslim, but remains a Christian/Hindu/Muslim all at the same time. Never mind the vast contradictions to that, this was the Coexist bumper sticker celluloid style.

At first I was bothered by that. Then I realized that this is exactly how most people view God. They see Islam as just another variation of Christianity, which is another variation of Hinduism. This is all impossible when you actually look at the tenants of the three belief systems, but most people don’t look at the tenants of these or their own belief systems. They are completely content with this hodgepodge of theological goop because its safe, and more importantly, easy. This is why the movie could be so popular, it fit the theological view of so many in our country. After all, in the end, all religions believe the same thing! Right?

Once I understood the movie in this context, and understood that this is where most people are, I sat back and quite enjoyed it. I liked Pi. I liked that he wouldn’t let the tiger die. I liked that he persevered. And I was quite sad for him and his loss. It was an OK movie, even if he was all mixed up religiously.

For a more in-depth review, go here.

The Death of Sean Bean

SeanBeanI watched another movie this week where I got to see the death of Sean Bean once again. If you will recall, I wrote about this in my post last week about the Three War Movies. In that one, Age of Heroes, he died in a commando raid on a Nazi radar unit.

The most recent movie where I witnessed his death: Goldeneye, the 1995 James Bond movie. This is the first one that featured Judy Dench as M. I remember complaining about the political correctness at the time, but Judy Dench outlasted Pierce Bronson and made it into the recent Bond movies with Daniel Craig, but died in the latest movie, Skyfall.

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Heaven Is For Real — NOT!

I was driving home today listening to Sean Hannity and his coworkers go on and on about this new movie coming out, based on the book of the same title, Heaven Is For Real. Given that Hannity was giving a complete endorsement for it, I thought I might bring some discernment to the discussion. I know many, and I mean many, are going to eat up whatever the book or movie says because these books always make heaven more palatable for those who are lost. I know, some of those who read this will think I’m just raining on the 4-year-olds parade because I don’t believe his story. Please hear me out.

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Some Thoughts on the movie, The Son of God

Apparently there is a new movie out entitled The Son of God that is about Jesus, His ministry and His death. And there have been attempts by the promoters of this movie to do with it, what was done with Mel Gibson’s The Passion of Christ. If you recall with the first movie, many in the church made a big deal to try and get as many people to go as possible, using the movie as an evangelistic tool. I was opposed to this type of evangelism then, and now. I see it as a lazy man’s attempt to get his wife-beating brother in-law to come to Christ. Of all those who supposedly came to know Christ because of Gibson’s presentation of Jesus, how many are truly believers today?

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Frozen

EDITOR’s NOTE: This is the Official Timothy Matter’s movie review. All though, I only play pretend movie critic once in a while, like now.

I found myself in line to see the movie Frozen this past Wednesday with my boys, Andy and Joey. I was driving around town and stopped in to see my father and he suggested I take them to see a movie. Frozen was playing. I had no idea what the movie was about, but given that it was a Disney, I thought that it must be good. One of Dad’s employees also said she read a review saying it was really good.

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The War Horse

I’m subbing a history class today. Since they are studying World War I, the teacher has us watching the movie, War Horse. There isn’t enough time to see the entire movie. I’m into the third showing. I think the premise of the movie is: THIS is a Steven Spielberg movie, therefore you must like it. I don’t. It’s quite predictable and just because he used wide sweeping panoramic views and sappy sentimental music doesn’t make up for the fact that the movies is just about a horse.

This movie is rife with the cliches from Spielberg’s toolbox, a beautiful center piece in the horse, a broken down and foolish farmer who buys the horse, the wise son who trains the horse, the evil man who is owed money on the horse and the goose who provides comic relief.

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Top 10 Apocalyptic Movies of All Time

When I started to do this list, I thought it would be something I would throw together in a Sunday afternoon and have some fun while doing so. But then, my mind drew a blank on the number of apocalyptic movies that I have actually seen that I had to refer to Anthony, our church movie expert. He is a movie expert because he is majoring in screen writing at the local community college. You might think: can you major in screen writing? Apparently you can, but the first line of every screen play written at the local community college is: “Would you like fries with that?”

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Monsters University, Where’s Waldo and Rain

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We got a quarter inch of rain today and praised The Lord for it. This area has been in a drought for about ten years. You can see from the photo how low my father’s front pond is. The water line is well below the damn. We need quite a bit more to break the drought.

Since it was raining I took the boys to see Monsters University. No patience to type a review. All three of us liked the movie.

Afterward we went to Independence Coffee to get a pound of coffee ground up since mine is in storage. The store manager got both boys involved in the downtown Where’s Waldo game. We spent the next two hours looking for Waldo in the participating merchants and had a blast. However much fun we had, it didn’t lead to the sales of any Where’s Waldo merchandise.

THE Amazing Spider-Man

I watched The Amazing Spider-Man tonight on DVD. There were two over-arching thoughts the entire time I watched. The first thought: Spider Man would never survive in a town like Roswell, NM. We only have two buildings over five stories and he wouldn’t be able to get around to save anyone.

He would have to use a bicycle or a skateboard or even a mule. But his webs would be completely useless until he arrived on the scene of the crime, only to find that the crime had already been committed and the criminals had dashed off in a 1978 Chevrolet Monte Carlo with original rims and added ground lighting. Not only that, he would have to learn Spanish. In all these cases, he would have to change his name to the Amazing Mule Man, or something like that. He wouldn’t be all that impressive.

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True Grit

We watched the 1969 version of True Grit last night, starring John Wayne and Glenn Campbell. After watching the Jeff Bridges version earlier in the year, and then going back to watch the original, I have to ask: why did Jeff Bridges & Company even bother? The John Wayne version, even though it lacked our modern-day intensity, was still the better film. In fact it was one of Wayne’s best films, which is why he won the Oscar for Best Actor.

Given the other options that year, he was the absolute best actor in the best film as well. The only movie most will recognize is Midnight Cowboy in which Dustin Hoffman and Jon Voight were both nominated for best actors.

This film still stands today as one that you should own, or at least watch. The lines are classic, well written, and memorable, unlike the tripe that is put forth in so many of our movies today. So much of the movies today are just spin offs of older films and lack any originality. Not so for the 1969 True Grit. Both Wayne and Kim Darby do excellent jobs in playing their characters, with Wayne rising to the occasion just for this movie. He shows why he was that actor that and movie star he was.

He plays the one-eyed fatman to a tee. He is grumpy when he needs to be, drunk when he needs to be, and a man of true grit when push comes to shove. Who can forget the scene when he takes the reins of the horse in his teeth, a rifle in one hand and a revolver in the other and heads off toward Ned Pepper’s Gang (Robert Duvall), guns a-blazing. Wayne was able to pull it off because the actor actually had true grit.

I also appreciate the performances of Robert Duvall and Dennis Hopper. While they played the parts of the bad-men, they were not one-dimensional bad men like so many these days. I hate movies where those who portray the wicked, never have doubts about their wickedness, or regrets. Both Duvall and Hopper’s characters show regret even though they are the men who are evil. That adds to the depth of the film.

I don’t wish to detract from Jeff Bridges. Had the film not been made in 1969, he would have been the perfect Rooster Cogburn. But since the movie was so well done in 1969, there was really nothing for Bridges and company to add to the story.

After we watched the movie, we watched the special features which included a portion about John Wayne. One of the commentators mentioned that we need more men with true grit like John Wayne. I couldn’t agree more.