With storms and chilly weather, it’s nice to spend a night at home. Check out what we’ve been watching this week!
Morgan – Need For Speed:
Okay so if I’m being honest, I didn’t rent a movie this week because I saw that Need For Speed had become available on Redbox. I saw it in theaters when it first came out and I never got to tell anyone how great it was! I seriously enjoyed this movie, even though at first I wasn’t super stoked about it. Aaron Paul is what got me sitting down in the theatre. Otherwise, it would have been just another racing movie to me. Basically, Toby (Paul) is framed and goes to jail. After he is released, he makes it his mission to get invited to this super exclusive race to get his revenge. If you win the race you win the opponents’ vehicles, which ends up being like, billions of dollars altogether. I like this movie a lot, mainly because it is realistic as far as racing movies go, and you can tell Paul is actual driving, which is rad. Also, Kid Cudi is in it and is hilarious.
Bottom Line: it’s your typical action movie, but better than usual and definitely worth a rent. Plus, Aaron Paul ❤
Jordan – Belle:
I have been wanting to see this movie since it came out earlier this year. The story centers around a girl named Dido Elizabeth Belle (played by Gugu Mbatha-Raw). When her mother (a free black woman) passes away, her estranged father (a captain in the Royal Navy) brings her into his family. He leaves Dido with his uncle and aunt to be raised alongside her cousin Elizabeth of the same age.
As the two girls grow up, we see tension arise around Dido’s ethnicity. She is welcomed as a full member of the family until guests visit. Even though she has a larger dowry compared to Elizabeth, men are hesitant to court a “mulatto.”
The plot takes a very predictable turn when a young clergyman’s son takes an interest in Dido. He is idealistic, radical, and blunt (did someone say Fiddler on the Roof?). He is lobbying on a high-profile case involving the treatment of slaves. Dido has to deal with the Sophie’s choice of picking between a pretty decent guy and the right guy.
All of the actors played their parts well. There is a lot of tension and depth that they all have to deal with. However, I’m not a big fan of the fluffy talk of some period pieces – this can get very Pride and Prejudice at moments.
Bottom Line: All in all, I liked the movie. History, race relations, romance, Draco Malfoy. It had everything I like.
Kurtis – Oculus:
Since it’s October, I thought it was the perfect time to rent a horror movie for this month’s Redbox post. Oculus came out last year, but is back in Redbox with Halloween coming soon. The plot device is a little over done; there’s an object (in this case, a mirror) that causes someone to go crazy. Tim Russell was just released from being in protective custody after ten years for the murder of his parents, but his sister Kaylie (Karen Gillan) is determined to finally prove that it was the new mirror their father bought that caused their parents’ deaths. Kaylie tracks down the mirror, investigates its past owners and learns of their similar fates. Tim and Kaylie eventually find themselves fighting off the malevolent powers of the mirror. Like I said, the device of a “haunted” object tearing a family apart is pretty overdone, but directors Mike Flanagan and Andy Ross mix current day scenes with flashbacks of the family’s first go-around with the mirror and that helps to keep the movie fresh. I really enjoyed that Oculus doesn’t rely on “jump out” scares but attempts to really mess with your mind, playing tricks with perception. Oculus leaves the door open for sequels, and this could a good first film in an even better series of films.
Bottom Line: Oculus is a subtle horror movie, gradually building with dread, suspense and psychological tricks. It’s a quality entry into the genre and horror fans will be satisfied once this one’s over.
What have you been renting lately? Have you tried Redbox Instant yet?