Archive for April, 2012

Marvel’s superhero epic The Avengers hits theaters this Friday, kicking off four months full of Hollywood’s hottest commodities. Complete with aliens and spies, explosions and car chases, violence and PG-13-style romance, this time of year always offers something for everyone. Thus, without further ado, the Haiku Review announces its most anticipated movies of the 2012 summer movie season. Continue reading

Somewhere in the middle of last decade, the creative folks behind comics giant Marvel realized they could probably make more money by producing their own films rather than licensing their property to other movie studios. After reacquiring the rights to several of their key superheroes, Marvel Studios began to unveil a series of films with overlapping continuity, shared characters, and a master plan that would lead up to a massive ensemble piece. Now that plan comes to fruition with The Avengers – the Marvel Universe collective that features such heavy hitters as Iron Man, the Incredible Hulk, and Captain America. With The Avengers opening in theaters in less than a week, it’s time for the Haiku Review to look back at the Marvel Universe films that have been leading up to it. Continue reading

Starring: Hugh Grant, Martin Freeman, Imelda Staunton, David Tennant, Jeremy Piven, Salma Hayek, Anton Yelchin, Brendan Gleeson, Ashley Jensen & Brian Blessed
Screenplay by Gideon Defoe
Directed by Peter Lord

A band of misfit pirates run afoul of Queen Victoria while trying to win their captain the infamous Pirate of the Year award.

The folks at Aarrrrrrrrrdman
plunder laughs without acting
like drunk Keith Richards.

Grade: B

By Daniel J. Hoag
The Pirates! Band of Misfits is now playing in theaters nationwide.

Haiku Review: The Raven (2012)

Starring: John Cusack, Luke Evans, Alice Eve & Brendan Gleeson
Screenplay by Ben Livingston & Hannah Shakespeare
Directed by James McTeigue

Edgar Allen Poe must help police stop a serial killer whose murders are inspired by the author’s work.

Would he ever watch
this turkey again? Quoth the
critic “Nevermore.”

Grade: C

By Daniel J. Hoag
The Raven is now playing in theaters nationwide.

(Blu) Haiku Review: Pariah (2011)

Starring: Adepero Oduye, Pernell Walker, Aasha Davis, Charles Parnell & Kim Wayans
Written and directed by Dee Rees

A teenage girl in Brooklyn gradually embraces her identity as a lesbian, which begins to put added strain on her parents already-fragile marriage.

A must-see for both
the persecuted and their
ignorant haters.

Grade: A-

By Daniel J. Hoag
Pariah is available on Blu-ray and DVD today.

Starring: Matt Damon, Scarlett Johansson, Thomas Haden Church, Patrick Fugit & Elle Fanning
Screenplay by Aline Brosh McKenna and Cameron Crowe
Directed by Cameron Crowe

After his wife dies, a man purchases a dilapidated zoo and sets about renovating it in hopes that it will help him reconnect with his children.

Matt Damon fixes
a zoo with a boom box and
some Pete Gabriel.

Grade: B

By Daniel J. Hoag
We Bought a Zoo is available now on Blu-ray and DVD.

Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Kate Beckinsale, Ben Foster, Giovanni Ribisi & J.K. Simmons
Screenplay by Aaron Guzikowski
Directed by Baltasar Kormákur

A former smuggler goes on one last job to help protect his brother-in-law from a vicious drug lord.

Marky Mark smuggles
charisma (which means if it’s
there, he hides it well).

Grade: C

By Daniel J. Hoag
Contraband is available on Blu-ray and DVD on 4/24/12.

Starring: Kristen Connolly, Chris Hemsworth, Anna Hutchison, Fran Kranz, Jesse Williams, Richard Jenkins, Bradley Whitford, Amy Acker & Sigourney Weaver
Written by Joss Whedon & Drew Goddard
Directed by Drew Goddard

Five young people on vacation find their remote cabin in the woods to be a source of unexpected horrors.

Horror conventions
get a Joss Whed-enema
Geek gods will be pleased

Grade: A-

By Daniel J. Hoag
The Cabin in the Woods in now playing in theaters nationwide.

Starring: Emile Hirsch, Olivia Thirlby, Max Minghella, Rachael Taylor & Joel Kinnaman
Screenplay by Jon Spaihts
Directed by Chris Gorak

Five young people in Moscow find themselves fighting for survival when invisible aliens attack.

These ETs suck our
energy, which explains why
this flick has no juice.

Grade: C-

By Daniel J. Hoag
The Darkest Hour is available on Blu-ray and DVD on 4/10/12.