Monday, July 29, 2013

Mini-Reviews: The Heat, The Lone Ranger & Pacific Rim (2013)

The Heat (2013)

Directed by Paul Feig
Produced by Peter Chernin and Jenno Topping
Written by Katie Dippold
Starring Sandra Bullock, Melissa McCarthy, Demian Bichir, Marlon Wayans and Michael Rappaport


An odd couple of female law enforcement officers team up to catch a big drug lord.

Bullock and McCarthy have good chemistry, and the film is funnier than I expected. (I had a better time at this than I did at Feig's Bridesmaids.) While it's a standard buddy cop movie, that doesn't make it less entertaining. Most of the gags are funny, and the veteran leads are a delight together. The film is hardly anything more than popcorn fare, but it's done very well. It's a solid action comedy, with lovable work from Bullock and McCarthy.

Oscar Potential: None

The Lone Ranger (2013)

Directed by Gore Verbinski
Produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and Gore Verbinski
Written by Justin Haythe, Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio
Starring Johnny Depp, Armie Hammer, William Fichtner, Ruth Wilson, Helena Bonham Carter, James Badge Dale, Barry Pepper and Tom Wilkinson


A Texas Ranger joins a Native American to bring down a corrupt railroad man.

Though widely panned, I actually enjoyed this film. It has its problems, like Verbinski's Pirates of the Caribbean sequels did, but it's so much fun if you're willing to go with it. Of course, Hammer is trying, and Depp is walking through it. The action is overblown and thrilling, while the screenplay is anything but ironclad. However, the second half of the film was a blast, and I can easily see myself revisiting this film in the future. It's not great. It's not terrible. It's just good fun.

Oscar Potential: Best Production Design, Best Costume Design, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing

Pacific Rim (2013)

Directed by Guillermo del Toro
Produced by Thomas Tull, Jon Jashni, Guillermo del Toro and Mary Parent
Written by Travis Beacham and Guillermo del Toro
Starring Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day, Rob Kazinsky, Max Martini and Ron Perlman


When aliens threaten the survival of the human race, a band of fighters uses giant robots to fight back.

Like The Lone Ranger, this should have been good fun. If it was, I didn't see it. Visually the film is one of the better blockbusters of the summer, but the screenplay doesn't do del Toro's vision any favors (and he co-wrote it!). In this case, the clichés are insurmountable, and some of the actors appear miscast. Elba, Kikuchi and Day are great, despite the material they're given. I admire del Toro's vision, but the execution of it could be much better. Bottomline: I just couldn't get into the film.

Oscar Potential: Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, Best Visual Effects


  1. Great mini-reviews! Based on your comments, I'll probably give The Heat a go when it comes to DVD.

  2. Bummer that you didn't like Pac Rim. Obviously you already know I loved it. The two you mentioned sound more of a rental to me, not sure I could get into The Heat however.

    1. I wish I loved Pacific Rim, but it just didn't work for me. I'm not sure if you'd like The Heat or not. :/

  3. I loved the Heat, the chemistry between the ladies was amazing and the film was really funny. I agree about Pacific Rim, I was very disappointed with it.

    1. Glad you also enjoyed The Heat. I never thought I'd give it a better review than Pacific Rim, though. :)

    2. Same here, I didn't review The Heat yet but it's gonna be much more positive review :)

    3. Looking forward to it :)

  4. Josh the only one of these I have seen is Pacific Rim. I may have liked it a wee bit more than you simply for the monster robot battles but other than that the film was pretty lame. Maybe del Toro needs to write the whole film next time. Yeah I read they already green lit the sequel.

    1. Yikes! I hope the sequel is better. I wonder if del Toro didn't focus enough on the script because he got too caught up in the design of the film. I wanted to love it, but it was forgettable.