So, even though it's been one of the most eventful and trying summers of my life, we've still managed to take in a lot of media. Whether movies, tv shows, books or music, we've done our fair share of media consumption. It might be escapism but I also think I've been drawn to stories as we try to make sense of the many changes happening in our life. Oh, also, a lot of the movies are the result of logging thousands of miles in the air. I literally exhausted the entire Air Canada movie inventory.

So, without further ado here's the list:


I watched this with no trace of irony.  I was genuinely pumped to watch this and was not disappointed.  Fast cars, straight-faced delivery of absurd lines and The Rock.  'Nuff said.

I went into this with pretty low expectations, especially since X3 was such a disappointment, but I was pretty entertained.  They got good actors and were successful in rebooting the series.  But c'mon, how does one replace Kelsey Grammer as The Beast?  (okay, I forgot he was even in X3 before I went and looked it up)

Min finished reading the books and I managed to get through the first one, which of course warranted a viewing of the original Swedish movie adaptation.  Though it was pretty well shot and acted, the story was kinda herky jerky, taking you in and out of the narrative.  The content is brutal though, so be warned.  Apparently Fincher's reboot is going to be even more graphic and disturbing.  Great...

I watched this as a downpayment on the next movie on this list, but I was pleasantly surprised!  I shouldn't have been surprised because Kristin Wiig was the writer and star, but still..  a movie about Bridesmaids?  Hilarious and heart-warming, that initial scene at the restaurant between Wiig and Rudolph "making faces" was worth the price of admission.

So was watching Bridesmaids worth being able to watch Thor with my wife?  ABSOLUTELY!  They totally played up the Encino Man vibe on this movie to hilarious effect.  The most hilarious aspect of the movie though?  Any full shot of Thor standing next to Natalie Portman.  Scenes of the giant Asgardian god holding hands with the tiny earthling scientist were golden.

Okay, before you judge me, I was on one of my million flights this summer and literally ran out of books to read, movies to watch, conversations to have and I couldn't sleep.  So The Bieb it was.  And you know what?  He won me over!  He's totally charming and talented and had me rooting for him by the end of the film.  Cameos by Jaydn Smith and Miley Cyrus?  Not so much.

Yet another airplane fatality.  I knew this one would be horrible and I was right.  Again, I don't know what it is about Natalie Portman looking particularly tiny on screen these days.  Anyways, you know the story even before you watch it and I guess the only redeeming value of this movie would be watching it side-by-side with Friends with Benefits and doing a comparison chart or something (ie.  Natalie vs. Mila, N Sync vs That 70's Show -- wait, both movies had actors from That 70's Show..!)

When the trailer for this first came out I was seriously stoked.  Then I forgot about it.  Then I saw it on an airplane and thoroughly enjoyed it.  It was pretty dry for an animated film, but that's why I loved it.  Rango's eyes were pretty gross to look at, but you got used to it.  Charming movie that sits on the same shelf as The Fantastic Mr. Fox -- animated movies that might bore children to tears.

Next on my list of movies I would only watch on an airplane!  But again, the magic of altitude, fatigue and boredom saved the day!  A pretty understated movie that mostly succeeds due to McConaughey's charm and whatever affection you had for him in A Time to Kill.  It's been a while since I enjoyed a lawyer movie this much though.  Kinda reminded me of another "under the radar" lawyer movie, The Rainmaker.

Min was definitely more excited about this one than me, mainly due to her crush on JJ Abrams and the fact that this movie was about kids.  It was aight.  Growing up in the '80s with movies like The Goonies, ET, Stand by Me, The Karate Kid etc, it's pretty hard to re-create the magic of being a kid watching a movie about kids getting into adventures and then wanting to get into your own adventures.  The home movie they play during the credits is pretty classic though.

Okay, first totally random "non-summer" movie.  While on a bus from DC to NYC, this was the movie they played on the trip.  Luckily I was prepared, having seen Diary of an Angry Black Woman a few months earlier.  Tyler Perry movies are a genre unto themselves.

Like the other comic book movies on this list, I possess an irrational loyalty for movies made from source material from my youth.  All I can say about Transformers 3 is, "it was better than Transformers 2" -- oh, and it was really, really, really, really long.  It could have been 1.5 hours shorter.

Airplane movie, what.. number 4 on my list?  On Min's recommendation I watched this one, knowing full well that it was one of those unabashedly family/faith friendly movies that appeal to Evangelical Christian audiences.  And you know what?  It was pretty good.  Inspirational and not overly preachy, I genuinely enjoyed myself.  Carrie Underwood as the cliche spouting youth pastor I could have done without.

I was also pretty excited when I saw the trailer for this one.  I was even more in awe when I discovered how long Mark Wahlberg stayed in training while this movie lingered in limbo.  Any time I feel like giving up on exercise and healthy eating I think of Marky Mark and The Fighter.... I think about the Fighter a lot.

I'm half relieved that it's over and only half thrilled with how the whole thing turned out.  Though The Prisoner of Azkaban was both my favorite book and movie, the Deathly Hallows was also a pretty great read/watch.  I felt like the conclusion was more emotional and powerful in the book (as it usually is), but I was sad to see these actors whom I saw age before me on screen move on to other things.  I am glad, however, that it actually did end.  I was afraid that the 7th movie would keep dividing endlessly and never reach a conclusion.

Okay - the second I walked out of the theater, I was kinda on the fence with regard to how I felt about this movie.  But the more days that went by, the more affection I felt for this movie.  It was great!  Not overly special-effect-y, it's basically the story of a weakling with a good heart who gets a chance to beat up on bad guys because his weakness enables him to appreciate his strength.  Now, if only the real America thought this way.

Surprisingly good.  You are cheering for the apes by the end of the movie.  The only distraction was when Draco Malfoy showed up as the evil ape-prison-guard.  Also, this movie kinda revived this whole universe which I gave up on after the severe disappointment I suffered under the Tim Burton/Mark Wahlberg fiasco.  How did that movie suck?

Meh.  Again, it was entertaining but didn't really break any ground in either genre, Cowboy or Alien.

Aside from Superman and Batman, I was kind of an anti-DC snob growing up as a kid reading comic books.  So I never read Green Lantern or really knew anything about the character or universe.  The movie seemed intriguing to me because I think Ryan Reynolds is actually kinda funny and thought he could pull this off.  The cheesy green special effects mostly reminded me of Jim Carrey's The Mask, though and any scene with Blake Lively was sheer torture.  Cameron Diaz she is not.

Tomorrow -- TV SHOWS, MOVIES and MUSIC!


  1. bravo, mike! entertaining read. :) my favorite: marky mark as your inspiration.

  2. woops, that was linns account. :)