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The Battle of the Sexes (2017)


The Battle of the Sexes (2017)

Although I did not live during the time that this film is supposed to have taken place, I knew a little bit about the battle of the sexes.  OK, all I really knew was that men and women played tennis against each other in the 1970s to prove which sex was better at sports.  I did not know any specifics.  I knew nothing.

The movie is a true story about how the best women’s tennis player, Billie Jean King (Emma Stone) and former men’s tennis champion, Bobby Riggs (Steve Carell) come to play an exhibition tennis match against each other for the battle of the sexes in 1973.

The rest of the noteworthy cast includes Andrea Riseborough, Bill Pullman, Natalie Morales, Sarah Silverman, Alan Cumming, Elisabeth Shue, Eric Christian Olsen, Fred Armisen, Jessica McNamee, Austin Stowell, Wallace Langham, Lewis Pullman (son of Bill Pullman), and James Mackay.

The movie was written by Simon Beaufoy and directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris.

The Battle of the Sexes was very formulaic and predictable.  However, it was a true story that I was truly unfamiliar with.  An exhibition tennis match suddenly becomes a fight for equal pay and equal rights.  It is a feel-good film about working to right a wrong in society.  The movie is an exploration in sexism and surprisingly, sexuality.

This would have been a great time to experience in American History.  To witness this symbolic tennis match (even just on TV), would’ve been witnessing an important time for women’s rights.

The movie does a good job showing just how slanted peoples’ views of men and women were back in the 1970s.  Even though lots of people believe that we still have a lot of work to do when it comes to equals rights for all, this film is definitely a big reminder that we have come a long way.

Emma Stone and Steve Carell were superb pitted against each other (as they were together in Crazy, Stupid, Love. (2011).  The costume design in the movie was excellent.  Stone and Carell looked very much like the people they were portraying.  So much so, that it was a little scary.  The 1970s was recreated very artistically down to every detail.

The movie had a nice recipe of goofy humor, and serious drama.  Like many sports films, it was quite predictable.  It is a formula that we have seen 100 times and it doesn’t get old.  We still enjoy watching the underdog.  It’s a David and Goliath story.  Danielle and Goliath, if you will.

 

I rate this movie a 6.5 on a scale of 1-10.

 

If you liked this film then you might also enjoy:

Crazy, Stupid, Love. (2011)

Invincible (2006)

Rocky (1976)

The Natural (1984)

Rudy (1993)

Gangster Squad (2013)

Zombieland (2009)

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Trailer For Transcendence (2014)


Transcendence Poster

Transcendence (2014)

It did not take long for me to learn that if Johnny Depp is in a movie, then that movie is pretty much bound to be good.  Although the story is a bit far-fetched, I will give Transcendence the benefit of the doubt.

The film is about a dying scientist (Johnny Depp) who manages to download his body and mind into a super computer.  The transformation causes him to become extremely powerful and dangerous.

The movie was directed by Wally Pfister and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Kate Mara, Rebecca Hall, Morgan Freeman, Cillian Murphy, Paul Bettany, Cole Hauser, Clifton Collins Jr., Falk Hentschel, and Wallace Langham.

Johnny Depp is my favorite actor.  I’ll definitely have to see this one!

The film is set to release on 04/18/14.

Hitchcock (2012)


Hitchcock poster

Hitchcock (2012)

In Hitchcock Anthony Hopkins steps into the shoes of the Master of Suspense and they fit him quite well.  In fact, he seemed so much like Alfred Hitchcock that at times I forgot it was actually Anthony Hopkins.  They even have the same monogrammed towels, although, that’s merely a coincidence.  Or is it?

Hitchcock comparison

Hitchcock is based off of Stephen Rebello’s non-fiction book Alfred Hitchcock and the Making of Psycho.  The film gives you a behind-the-scenes look at the relationship that Alfred Hitchcock had with his wife and the struggle he went through to create his most popular beloved masterpiece, Psycho (1960).

Hitchcock

I am a huge Hitchcock fan, and I was not familiar with a lot of the events that occurred in this story.  The movie was a sort of tribute to the legendary genius film director.  It was enlightening and very entertaining.

Just as Hitchcock was able to get tons of popular actors to act in his films, Hitchcock the movie is overrun with a number of great actors: Anthony Hopkins, Helen Mirren, Scarlett Johansson, Danny Huston, Jessica Biel, Toni Collette, Michael Stuhlbarg, Michael Wincott, James D’Arcy, Richard Portnow, Kurtwood Smith, Ralph Macchio, Wallace Langham, Currie Graham, Spencer Garrett, and Frank Collison.  Sacha Gervasi directs the movie.

Helen Mirren is superb as Hitchcock’s wife Alma.  The chemistry between Mirren and Hopkins on screen is perfect.

Hitchcock Johansson Shower

The filming of Psycho was very tastefully recreated in Hitchcock.  Scarlett Johansson does an excellent job playing Janet Leigh.  Jessica Biel is a great Vera Miles.  I thought James D’Arcy was a pretty believable Anthony Perkins.

Hitchcock Johansson Car

Anthony Hopkins did for Hitchcock what Daniel Day-Lewis did for Lincoln (2012).  They didn’t just act the part.  They became the part.

If you are an Alfred Hitchcock fan like I am, than you will most certainly enjoy Hitchcock.

I rate this movie a 9 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Buy.

Hitchcock Director chair

Note: You might be wondering why the name Ralph Macchio sounds so familiar.  He was the original Karate Kid (Daniel Larusso) in The Karate Kid (1984).  Can you believe he is already 51 years old?