Tag Archive: Kidnapping

Haiku Review: 12 Years a Slave (2013)

12 YearsStarring: Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Lupita Nyong’o, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Sarah Paulson, Brad Pitt & Paul Giamatti
Written by John Ridley
Directed by Steve McQueen

Based on the true story of Solomon Northup, a free black man from New York in pre-Civil War America, who was kidnapped and sold into slavery, which led to twelve long years of brutality and hardship.

Germany is not
the only country with a
shameful history.

Grade: A

By Daniel J. Hoag
12 Years a Slave is playing now in theaters nationwide.

(Blu) Haiku Review: Taken 2 (2012)

taken 2Starring: Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace & Famke Janssen
Written by Luc Besson & Robert Mark Kamen
Directed by Olivier Megaton

The ex-CIA operative who rescued his daughter from sadistic kidnappers finds himself the target of their revenge when he and his wife are take hostage in Istanbul.

He may possess a
“certain set of skills,” but good
filmmaking’s not one.

Grade: C

By Daniel J. Hoag
Taken 2 is now available on Blu-ray and DVD.

house end streetStarring: Jennifer Lawrence, Max Thieriot, Gil Bellows & Elisabeth Shue
Screenplay by David Loucka
Directed by Mark Tonderai

A mother and daughter find themselves in danger when they move next door to a young man whose parents were murdered when he was younger.

If you leave your plot
twists in the window, you’ll end
up in foreclosure.

Grade: C-

By Daniel J. Hoag
House at the End of the Street is available on Blu-ray and DVD tomorrow.

Starring: Amanda Seyfried, Daniel Sunjata, Wes Bentley, Jennifer Carpenter & Sebastian Stan
Written by Allison Burnett
Directed by Heitor Dhalia

A young woman believes her sister has been abducted by the same man she claims kidnapped her a year earlier, but the police are convinced that she is imagining it all.

An apt title for
a film missing anything
of substance. Bye, Gone.

Grade: C-

By Daniel J. Hoag
Gone is available on Blu-ray and DVD on 5/29/12.

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.

Starring: Antonio Banderas, Elena Anaya, Marisa Paredes & Jan Cornet
Screenplay by Pedro Almodóvar & Agustín Almodóvar
Directed by Pedro Almodóvar

A plastic surgeon engineering an experimental synthetic skin tests it on a human patient he keeps locked up in his house.

A little bit of
tuck and a whole lotta nip
Skin may cause goosebumps

Grade: B

By Daniel J. Hoag
The Skin I Live In is now playing in select cities.

Directed by Errol Morris

Academy Award-winning documentarian Errol Morris recounts the stranger-than-fiction story of Joyce McKinney, a former beauty queen whose obsession with a Mormon missionary landed her on the front pages of the tabloids with tales of abduction, rape, bondage, prostitution, cult brainwashing, magic underwear and animal cloning.

Errol Morris knows
eccentrics make great subjects.
Your jaw might just drop.

Grade: A-

By Daniel J. Hoag
Tabloid is available on DVD on 11/1/11.

Starring: Michael Angarano, Kerry Bishé, Nicholas Braun, Kyle Gallner, John Goodman, Melissa Leo, Kevin Pollak & Stephen Root
Written and directed by Kevin Smith

Three teenage boys are kidnapped by a militant fundamentalist group lead by an evil pastor with a deadly moral agenda.

Kevin Smith slacks off
on a solid idea
for a smart thriller.

Grade: C

By Daniel J. Hoag
Red State is available on Blu-ray and DVD on 10/18/11.

Starring: Seth Green, Dan Fogler, Elisabeth Harnois & Joan Cusack
Screenplay by Simon Wells & Wendy Wells
Directed by Simon Wells

A young boy must rescue his mother from the Martians who abducted her.

That Zemeckis-style
animation ain’t getting
any less creepy.

Grade: C+

By Daniel J. Hoag
Mars Needs Moms is now available on Blu-ray and DVD.

Starring: Nicolas Cage, Amber Heard, William Fichtner, Billy Burke & David Morse
Written by Todd Farmer & Patrick Lussier
Directed by Patrick Lussier

An undead felon breaks out of hell to seek revenge on the cult-worshipping savages who murdered his daughter and kidnapped his granddaughter.

Hell is a Nic Cage
movie burning your eyeballs
for eternity.

Grade: F

By Daniel J. Hoag
Drive Angry is available on Blu-ray and DVD tomorrow.