Nick’s Picks – June 10, 2015

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JURASSIC WORLD

Over the course of the past 22 years, many things have changed. The Jurassic World theme park has thousands upon thousands of visitors each day. And in somewhat of an homage to the original, this film has two young family members of a significant park employee visiting. What is unique about this film is the genesis of the killing dinosaur, who has been created through questionable means and raised for no good. As fate would have it, the menace gets loose and beings killing everyone in its path. Enter Owen (Chris Pratt), a man of many talents and former Navy man who has a way with some of the dinosaurs. Throughout the film, he is battling dinosaurs, idiot guests and Hoskins (Vincent D’Onofrio) who has some strange desire to weaponize the dinosaurs. But I suppose it would be necessary for the a hair-brained scheme to exist, otherwise we wouldn’t really have a movie, now would we?

The film was directed by Colin Trevorrow and he most certainly deserves applause for recognizing the true stars of this film are the dinosaurs and not the actors (although some tweeners with Pratt-itis would definitely disagree). With the highest level of visual effects that money can buy, the sequences and visuals will definitely keep you engaged and interested. The film is essentially just like the others only with more impressive graphics and visuals. The characters leave a great deal to be desired with many simply existing to provided fodder and food for the dinosaurs. With the original film providing us with so many awe inspiring moments, it’s hard to not make comparisons to the original film. The most disappointing aspect of this installment is the commercialism throughout the film. I don’t really care for theme parks and this film truly feels like one. There is product placement everywhere you look and it made me feel like I had just spent the day at an amusement park waiting in line all day for a ride that broke down just before I hit the turnstile. It’s worth the viewing for the action sequences and CGI but just don’t expect anything more than that.

Jurassic World
Starring: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard & Vincent D’Onofrio
Director: Colin Trevorrow
Company: Universal Pictures
Now Showing: In Local Area Theatres
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Grade: C

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Turtles

FREE DVD GIVEAWAY

We are doing a Free DVD Giveaway! If you are interested in a chance at
winning a free copy of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Search for Splinter & NYC Showdown, it is really easy! All you have to do is send me an email at HoustonMovieGuy@gmail.com. The subject line of the email should read DVD GIVEAWAY. In the body of the email, be sure to put your name, full mailing address and which DVD or Blu-ray you would like. Winners will be selected by random drawing. Best of luck!

TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES: The Search for Splinter & NYC Showdown – Nickelodeon

The search is on in this totally rad value-pack! A Mousers attack has separated the Turtles from their master! But they get more than they bargained for when their search for Splinter leads them to a building connected with their mutation.

POWER RANGERS MEGAFORCE: Sky Strike – Lionsgate

Sky Strike centers on five teenagers (Troy, Noah, Emma, Gia, Jake) being summoned by the supernatural guardian Gosei to defend Earth against an alien invasion by becoming Power Rangers. During the first season the Rangers were aided by Robo Knight until he went vanished into thin air. The second season (known as Super Megaforce) introduced the Silver Ranger, Orion, a human from another planet whom arrives on Earth to help the Rangers defeat the aliens. All the Rangers are given Legendary Keys, giving them the ability to transform into any past Ranger.

THE LAST UNICORN – Shout Factory!

Brought to life by the luminary voice talents of Jeff Bridges, Mia Farrow, Angela Lansbury and Rene Auberjonois. this animated treasure is the story of a lonely unicorn who sets out on an extraordinary quest to find her lost brothers and sisters. Along the way she meets a colorful cast of characters, including a bumbling wizard who magically transforms her into a beautiful damsel. When a handsome prince falls in love with her, he challenges the evil foe who holds her captive. But the task proves harder than imagined, and the unicorn soon discovers that real magic comes from believing in the impossible.

SERENA – Magnolia

George and Serena Pemberton (Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence), love-struck newlyweds, begin to build a timber empire. Serena soon proves herself to be equal to any man: overseeing loggers, hunting rattlesnakes, even saving a man’s life in the wilderness. With power and influence now in their hands, the Pembertons refuse to let anyone stand in the way of their inflated love and ambitions. However, once Serena discovers George’s hidden past and faces an unchangeable fate of her own, the Pembertons’ passionate marriage begins to unravel.

COFFY – Olive Films

Pam Grier bares both breasts and bullets for a potent combination in Jack Hill’s blaxploitation classic. Grier plays Coffy, a nurse who never sees an operating theater, instead preferring the street theater of violent confrontation, becoming a one-woman army against the vapid drug dealers ruling the inner city. Coffy kicks into high gear after she finds her little sister in a coma from shooting smack. Pretending to be a dopehead, she lures the pusher to his doom, blowing his head off with a shotgun. When her cop ex-boyfriend tells her about the drug kingpin King George (Robert Duqui) and his involvement with the local mobster Arturo Vitroni (Alan Arbus), she smacks her lips and sets her sights on them too. But Coffy is rendered stupefied when she discovers that her phony liberal Congressman boyfriend Brunswick (Booker Bradshaw) is also involved with the drug dealers and mobsters. So, she revs her throttle and goes full tilt for him as well.

FOXY BROWN – Olive Films

Blaxploitation icon Pam Grier stars as Foxy Brown, a sexy but streetwise woman whose ne’er-do-well brother Link (Antonio Fargas) is a drug dealer who owes mobsters 20,000 dollars. To get the hoods off his back, Link names Foxy’s boyfriend as a government agent trying to wipe out organized crime, and the mob soon has him rubbed out. But Hell hath no fury like Foxy Brown scorned; posing as a hooker to get the inside scoop on the mob, she goes on a crusade to find out who murdered her man, and she exacts revenge with the help of a local activist group. The supporting cast includes cult figure Sid Haig as a bad guy (as usual) and Peter Brown and Kathryn Loder as a seriously kinky couple who rule the local mob.

FRIDAY FOSTER – Olive Films

A woman looking for adventure finds romance, excitement and danger in her viewfinder in this action-packed comedy-drama. Friday Foster (Pam Grier) is a beautiful and ambitious young photographer who is working as an assistant at Glance Magazine, edited by the hard-boiled Monk Riley (Julius Harris). When Riley can’t get in touch with his first-call photographer, he calls Foster with a very important New Year’s Eve assignment — reclusive billionaire Blake Tarr (Thalmus Rasulala), often called “the black Howard Hughes,” is expected to be coming to Los Angeles, and Riley wants pictures of Tarr’s arrival. But Foster gets more than she bargained for when Tarr is ambushed by a gang of assassins disguised as security guards. The next day, Foster is helping to shoot a fashion show introducing new creations from flamboyant designer Madame Rena (Eartha Kitt) when Clorils Boston (Rosalind Miles), a model who has known Friday since childhood, is stabled to death.

HAMMER – Olive Films

A man who fights his way to success learns the people who helped him may be his biggest enemies in this action drama. B.J. Hammer (Fred Williamson) is a dock worker who used to box in the Golden Gloves and still knows how to handle himself in a fight; when he gets into a brawl at work, he’s seen in action by an associate of Davis (Bernie Hamilton), a flashy businessman who manages boxers. Davis thinks Hammer has potential, and offers him a contract. Soon Hammer is training with Professor (Mel Stewart, an experienced boxing coach, and begins romancing Lois (Vonetta McGee), one of Davis’s secretaries. After easily winning several fights, Hammer’s career is on the rise and he seems poised to become a championship contender. But Davis isn’t just interested in boxing; he’s an underworld kingpin who also traffics in drugs and prostitutes, and often uses washed-up fighters as pawns in his criminal games.

PROJECT ALMANAC – Paramount

A brilliant high school student and his friends uncover blueprints for a mysterious device with limitless potential, inadvertently putting lives in danger.

THE FACTS OF LIFE: Season Six – Shout Factory!

A classic sitcom and that’s a Fact! Mrs. Garrett and her girls (Blair, Natalie, Tootie and Jo) are back with another batch of freshly baked episodes filled with humor and heart in the sixth season of The Facts of Life. Season Six finds the girls dividing their time between working at Mrs. Garrett’s gourmet food shop, Edna’s Edibles, and exploring an ever-expanding world and all the challenges that lie ahead as they launch themselves into young adulthood. Through it all (from a hurricane-battered spring break in Fort Lauderdale to a memorable night of cruising in Peekskill) Mrs. Garrett’s four young charges learn that the one thing you can always count on is friendship.

HART TO HART: Final Season – Shout Factory!

Robert Wagner and Stefanie Powers return as your favorite glamorous gumshoes Jonathan and Jennifer Hart in the fifth and final season of Hart to Hart! With their loyal friend and servant Max (Lionel Stander) by their side once again, the Harts are ready to take you to new heights of intrigue and elegance in these final twenty-two episodes of their hit series. Created by Sidney Sheldon, both a bestselling novelist (Master of the Game, Windmills of the Gods) and hit television producer (I Dream of Jeannie, The Patty Duke Show), Hart to Hart is a smart and sexy detective drama featuring sparkling and witty dialogue, gorgeous costumes, and jet-setting thrills. Your friends at Shout! Factory think that you’ll definitely want to add this final season to your collection: cross our Hart and hope to die.

THE TRIAL OF VIVIANE AMSALEM – Music Box

An Israeli woman (Ronit Elkabetz) seeking to finalize her divorce from her cruel and manipulative husband finds herself effectively put on trial by her country’s religiously-based marriage laws, in this riveting drama from sibling directors Shlomi and Ronit Elkabetz who is also one of Israeli cinema’s most acclaimed actresses. In Israel there is neither civil marriage nor civil divorce; only rabbis can legalize a marriage or its dissolution, which is only possible with the husband’s full consent. Viviane Amsalem has been applying for a divorce for three years but her husband Elisha (Simon Ebkarian), will not agree. His cold intransigence, Viviane’s determination to fight for her freedom, and the ambiguous role of the judges shape a procedure in which tragedy vies with absurdity, and where everything is brought out for judgment, apart from the initial request.

TEEN WOLF: Season Four – Fox

Still healing from tragic losses, Scott, Stiles, Lydia and Kira return to a new semester of school with more human worries than supernatural, while also trying to help their new friend, Malia, integrate back into society. But Kate Argent’s surprising resurrection brings a new threat to Beacon Hills along with the emergence of another mysterious enemy known simply as The Benefactor.

All synopses used with permission

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