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A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints (2006)


A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints Poster

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints (2006)

I had never even heard of A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints until I rented Charlie Countryman (2013) at the Redbox.  When you rent Charlie Countryman, you get A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints as a bonus movie.  They give you a two-for-one, a double sided disc for the price of one movie.  It’s a Shia LaBeouf double feature.  They are both indie films.  This was all the more intriguing to me, so I watched each movie the other night.  You can guess what one of my next reviews will be.

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints Group

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints was based on the book with the same title.  Surprisingly enough, the man who wrote the book, Dito Montiel, also directed the movie.  The movie is a film adaptation of Dito Montiel’s life growing up in Astoria, New York in the 1980s.  The story is a look into a messed up childhood in a rough part of the city.  It follows the struggles of inner city teenagers, Dito (Shia LaBeouf plays young Dito, and Robert Downey Jr. plays grown up Dito) and his friends as they are becoming adults.  The circle of friends are pitted against drugs, violence, sex, love, hate, loss, and hardship.  All the while, Dito wants to escape New York and try to make a better life for himself somewhere else.

The rest of the noteworthy cast includes Channing Tatum, Chazz Palminteri, Dianne Wiest, Rosario Dawson, Melonie Diaz, Martin Compston, Scott Michael Campbell, Anthony DeSando, Adam Scarimbolo, Peter Anthony Tambakis, Laila Liliana Garro, and Eric Roberts.

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints Downey Jr. Dawson

I’m surprised that this movie got past me 8 years ago, because the cast is excellent.  I should have been aware of this film earlier.  It’s another low-budget independent film that slipped through the cracks.

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints was hard to watch, at times, but it was also hard to stop watching.  The film was an excellent depiction of how rundown certain areas of the country can be and how it affects the people living there.  It’s indeed unfortunate, but it’s in-your-face honesty.  Some people won’t be able to handle the honesty of this movie.  The trashy characters, obscene language and other vulgarity, along with the sex, nudity, and mindless violence, among other things, will be too much for some.

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints LaBeouf

But, you have to take the sweet from the sour.  There is indeed a silver lining in this story.  The headlining actors in this film are exceptional.  The movie makes you feel like you are in the slums with the characters experiencing it all.  The actors portray a remarkable friendship and camaraderie that helps you come back to the reality that people often try to be good even if they are bad.

The story is rigid and rocky, but the writing and acting make it all worthwhile.  Here is an unknown gem for those who are willing to give it a chance.

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints Tatum Palminteri

I rate this movie an 8 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Buy.

If you liked A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints, you might also enjoy the following movies:

White House Down (2013)

The Company You Keep (2012)

Silver Linings Playbook (2012)

The Place Beyond the Pines (2012)

Out of the Furnace (2013)

The Big Wedding (2013)

Stuck in Love (2012)

Flight (2012)

Prisoners (2013)

Wrecked (2010)

Mud (2012)

The Iceman (2012)

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Redbox Movie Reviews January 2014


Redbox Movie Reviews January 2014

redbox box

I have seen 94 of the movies that are currently available at the Redbox.  Of those 94 films, I have written a review for 61 of them.  My reviews will let you know what I think are the best movies currently available at the Redbox and what are the worst movies currently available at the Redbox.

I like a wide variety of movies.  My list consists of comedy movies, horror movies, action movies, drama movies, western movies, science fiction movies, foreign movies, comic book movies, family movies, war movies, etc.  I’ve reviewed almost every genre you can think of, so hopefully it will suit whatever mood you are in.

Note: I will continue to update this list throughout the month of January.  Each month I will keep updating a new list that will have more and more movies on it.  If you like what you see, I hope that you will come back for more in the future.

Click on each title below for a trailer, pictures, cast list, my rating, and my review of that movie.

2 Guns (2013)

6 Souls (2009)

42 (2013)

Admission (2013)

The Big Wedding (2013)

Bullet to the Head (2012)

The Call (2013)

Captain Phillips (2013)

The Company You Keep (2012)

The Conjuring (2013)

Curse of Chucky (2013)

Dead Man Down (2013)

Elysium (2013)

Emperor (2012)

Evil Dead (2013)

The Frozen Ground (2013)

Gangster Squad (2013)

Getaway (2013)

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints (2006)

The Hangover Part III (2013)

The Heat (2013)

The Hunger Games (2012)

The Iceman (2012)

Identity Thief (2013)

InAPPropriate Comedy (2013)

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013)

The Internship (2013)

Jobs (2013)

Kick-Ass 2 (2013)

Killing Season (2013)

The Last Stand (2013)

Lee Daniels’ The Butler (2013)

The Lone Ranger (2013)

The Lords of Salem (2012)

Mama (2013)

Man of Steel (2013)

Man of Tai Chi (2013)

Mud (2012)

Now You See Me (2013)

Oblivion (2013)

Olympus Has Fallen (2013)

Only God Forgives (2013)

Oz the Great and Powerful (2013)

Pain & Gain (2013)

Pawn Shop Chronicles (2013)

The Place Beyond the Pines (2012)

Prisoners (2013)

The Purge (2013)

Red 2 (2013)

R.I.P.D. (2013)

Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)

Stuck in Love (2012)

This is the End (2013)

Trance (2013)

Vehicle 19 (2013)

Violet & Daisy (2011)

The Way, Way Back (2013)

We’re the Millers (2013)

White House Down (2013)

The Wolverine (2013)

World War Z (2013)

If you like what you see then click on this link: www.brockingmovies.com to check out the rest of my site.  Movies are what I do.

White House Down (2013)


White House Down Poster 2

White House Down (2013)

I expected White House Down to be basically the same movie as Olympus Has Fallen (2013).  Besides the actors, almost everything about each film looked very similar.  It is very weird to me that two movies that are so much alike would be released the same year and so close to one another.  For some reason I got it in my mind that White House Down was going to be the ugly cousin of Olympus Has Fallen.

White House Down Tatum Bloody nose

White House Down follows a former military man (Channing Tatum) who brings his daughter with him to the White House where he managed to get a job interview to try to become a Secret Service Agent.  He brings his daughter along with him to the White House because she is a huge fan of the President (Jamie Foxx).  While there, they decide to take a tour.  During the tour the White House is attacked and the man does what he can to protect his daughter and the President.

1183878 - WHITE HOUSE DOWN

The film was directed by Roland Emmerich and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Maggie Gyllenhaal, James Woods, Jason Clarke, Richard Jenkins, Joey King, Nicolas Wright, Jimmi Simpson, Michael Murphy, Rachelle Lefevre, Lance Reddick, Matt Craven, and Kevin Rankin.

This movie surprised me.  It exceeded my expectations.  I liked it a little bit better than Olympus Has Fallen.  It was not quite as predictable as Olympus Has Fallen and I felt that the actors did a better job.  Also, it seemed like White House Down had fewer flaws than Olympus Has Fallen.

White House Down on fire

The film was intense and exciting.  The attack on the White House was eerily realistic.  There was a lot of good action.  As with most action movies, some of the action was a bit unbelievable at times.  But, for the most part, this didn’t take away from the film.

Tatum was likable as he usually is.  Foxx was better than I thought he would be as the President.  When the two teamed up together, they were both pretty entertaining and even funny at times.

White House Down - trailer video

The rest of the actors played their parts well.  Besides Tatum and Foxx, Woods and Jenkins stood out above the rest.

Overall, White House Down is a fun ride worth taking.

I rate this movie an 8 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Buy.

If you liked White House Down (2013), then you will probably enjoy the following movies:

Olympus Has Fallen (2013)

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints (2006)

The Company You Keep (2012)


the company you keep

The Company you Keep (2012)

 

The Company you keep is based off of the novel with the same name written by Neil Gordon.

The film follows a journalist (Shia LaBeouf) who discovers the true identity of a former member of The Weather Underground (Robert Redford) who is wanted in connection to a murder.

The Company you Keep LaBeouf Tucci

I was excited to see this movie because I often enjoy movies about investigative journalism, not to mention the cast is fully loaded with talent.  Redford directs and stars alongside LaBeouf, Julie Christie, Susan Surandon, Stanley Tucci, Terrence Howard, Nick Nolte, Chris Cooper, Richard Jenkins, Brendan Gleeson, Sam Elliot, Stephen Root, Anna Kendrick, Brit Marling, and Jackie Evancho.  Redford may be getting old, but he still has the star power to bring together a big A-list group of actors to make a movie.

The Weather Underground is an anti-war activist group that was around during the Vietnam War era.  I had heard about this group before, but I went into the film knowing absolutely nothing about them.  The movie explains what the group was all about, but given the fact that the story is based off of a novel, they sort of mix fact with fiction.

The Company you Keep LaBeouf Root

Like most films about investigative journalism, the story moves along at a slow to steady pace as the reporter tries to figure things out about the story that he is trying to tell.  There is plenty of time for character development and the dialogue is well-written.  Great actors tend to pop up out of the woodwork like weeds when these types of movies are made and The Company you Keep is no exception.

The Company you Keep Redford

It was refreshing to see Robert Redford acting again.  He hasn’t been in a movie since Lions for Lambs (2007).  Although he has always been a tremendous actor, he really has aged.  They tried to make him seem younger in the film by dying his hair and having him jogging in one scene.  But, when all is said and done, the movie icon was too old for the part he was playing.  This fact took a little bit away from the film.

The person that really stood out the most was Shia LaBeouf.  He has strong screen presence, and when he is not doing a Transformers movie, his charisma can really take over a movie.  The rest of the cast played their parts well but, LaBeouf was the glue that held the film together.

The Company you Keep Redford running

The Company you Keep was quality filmmaking with a few flaws.  The flaws weren’t very noticeable until a little over halfway through the film.  Redford did his best with the story that he had, but ultimately the movie was anticlimactic and it became predictable.  The dialogue was great, the acting was superb, but there were few surprises along the way to make the movie stand out.

The Company you Keep Surandon

The film was worth seeing, if only to watch masters of the acting craft at work.

I rate this movie a 7 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Rent.

If you liked The Company You Keep, then you will probably enjoy the following films:

All is Lost (2013)

A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints (2006)

Brubaker (1980)