What To See With Val: Movies 2021

Hey my movie loving friends!

You all know that I absolutely love movies. Check out my weekly reviews on movies and TV shows. Would love to hear your feedback at valerie.cameron@cumulus.com

 

Reviews by Val Cameron

 

June

 

The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard
R
Bodyguard Michael Bryce (Ryan Reynolds) and hitman Darius Kincaid (Samuel L. Jackson) are back for more ridiculous action movie shenanigans! The sequel to The Hitman’s Bodyguard brings actress Salma Hayek front and center. Samuel L. Jackson’s character needs saving and Hayek who plays Sonia Kincaid, wants to help her husband by bringing overly protective bodyguard Michael Bryce back into their lives. Of course, just like the original, things do not go as planned and chaos ensues. This is a fun, adventurous and vulgar movie. We all know that with Samuel L Jackson comes a plethora of swear words, but I think Salma Hayek out does him in this movie. There are surprises in the story and with pop in actors. I don’t think it was as good as the first movie, I do think it was entertaining. Defiantly a lot of laughing out loud. If you don’t mind silliness and bad language, then you will enjoy this movie. In theatres and streaming now.
Grade: B-

Luca
PG
As an Italian, I have been waiting for Disney to make a movie about Italians for a while now. Pixar and Disney bring you to this fun small Italian town not only above the water but below. Filled with fun characters and beautiful surrounding, you are immediately captivated. The story is a mix of The Little Mermaid, Pinocchio and Coco. Where it doesn’t back as much of an emotional punch as other Pixar movies, it does take you on a journey of friendship, curiosity and relationships. As a parent I really connected to the relationship that the main character Luca, played by Jacob Tremblay, had with his mom and dad. As parents we always want to protect our kids, and not knowing when to let them explore and grow is scary for us. When he accidentally makes a new friend, Alburto, he is introduced to a life beyond his small town and can’t help but get caught up. This movie is delightful and full of fun meaningful life lessons, Disney and Pixar Easter Eggs and lots of Pasta and Vespas.  Steaming only on Disney+
Grade B+

Peter Rabbit 2

PG

James Corden and the entire Rabbit crew are back for this second installment of the movie franchise. Like the first movie, they give us an adult base message wrapped up in nice little bunny bow for kids to enjoy. Have you felt like you don’t belong? Like people just don’t understand you? Maybe if you left your neighborhood or small town everything would be better? Most of us have felt that way at some point. Then when we get to the place we think we need to be we look back and try to figure out who we really are. That is this movie in a nut shell, plus a wedding and full on bunny shenanigans. Super cute, family and community oriented and of course mischief by our favorite rabbit.

 

Grade B

 

 

Witnesses 

PG 

There is a new faith-based movie hitting theatres this weekend, Witnesses. This is a story of the three men who witnessed angels and the gold plates containing ancient scriptures for the Church of Jesus Christ and Ladder Day Saints. They take a different approach in this film than from other movies I have seen about Joseph Smith and the church. They show the men involved at their actual ages from the time, they are all in their early 20’s. The filmed in all of the locations these happenings took place, New York, Canada, Massachusetts and Utah. It is a beautify shot film, and the acting is pretty solid. What I enjoyed the most about this film was the “realness”. You see Joseph Smith as a young man making mistakes and laughing with his family. The main men involved, David Whitmer, Oliver Cowdery and Martin Harris showed struggle and it was very human. I am not of the LDS faith and I do feel you can watch this film and get more out of it than a religious movie experience. You do feel and know right away that the film is about religion and a specific story, however it was refreshing to learn and see something I had not seen before. In 250 theatres nation wide.  

Grade: B- 


 

 

Spirit Untamed  

PG 

Spirit Untamed in a Dream Works animated movie made for young kids in for a tame adventure. This is made in a classic animation and storytelling style. Nothing fancy, just a fun ride for kids who like movies about other kids going on an adventure. You won’t see super scary villains, no pyrotechnics and adult humor. It’s about a young girl that has lived a life in a bigger city with her grandpa and aunt who moves to a small town with her dad for the summer. She learns about her mother whom she has never met, meets new friends and stands up for a wild hearted horse named Spirit. To me it has a Barbie style mixed with a little bit of How to Train Your Dragon. You will have no issues having your kids watch this girl power filled movie, however you may get a little bored. In Theatres. 

Grade: B- 

 

 

 

 

The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It 

R 

I have to say right off the bat that I am not a fan of these types of films. In fact this is the first Conjuring movie that I have seen.  That being said this film is full of suspense and intense moments that will make you squirm in your seat and watch from behind your hands. I like to wear a hoodie to movies like this, more security haha. It was a little slow in the beginning but as we get closer to the middle and end of the movie you start seeing that this story is going to end in a very different direction that you would have expected. The Warrens are back (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga) dealing with the paranormal, fighting for souls and they realize they may be over their heads with what will be a historical murder case.  The story was a little lacking in some parts but the acting sold most of the movie, mostly by Vera Farmiga. In Theatres and on HBO MAX 

Grade: C+ 

 

 

 

 

May

5.21.2021

Dream Horse

PG

If you been waiting for a feel-good movie that will uplift you, make you want to cheer, cry and hug your pets? If so, this is the movie for you. Toni Collette plays small-town bartender (Jan) who is looking for a change and to do something most would deem unthinkable. She breeds a racehorse named Dream, and with very little money takes on the big leagues. One of the best things about this movie is that it shows us the warmth of a small-town Welch community. It takes on a personality of its own and gives a different feel to a movie that most of us have seen before. Yes, it is predictable and doesn’t really break and new ground when it comes to “Based on true story” movies about a small-town character that works hard, brings a community together and then achieves something amazing in the end. The relationship between Jan and Dream is special and almost memorizing. It gives most of us who have experienced a stronger relationship with our pets during the pandemic some extra feels and validation. It’s an all-around feel-good movie that you don’t have to think much about. Turn it on, relax and allow yourself to smile for a while. 

Grade: B