HomePodcastsCinema GeeksMonthly Movie Roundup for June 2017

Monthly Movie Roundup for June 2017

The Cinema Geeks podcast continues with their Monthly Movie Roundup! blog series. For this edition we are giving you our thoughts on the June releases. In order to help supplement the lack of new movie reviews we do in the actual podcast, each month we will give you our quick takes on the previous months new releases. Each release will receive a quick take from at least ONE of our resident geeks, and at times may receive a take from all four of us. In the comments section be sure to let us know if you agree or disagree with our takes. You can also tweet your thoughts to us directly. The show handle is @CinemaGeekCast or you could reach us each individually by tweeting to Kevin @OptimusSolo, Dan @MovieRevolt, Amanda @HardCandiMandi or Matt @FridleyCent. If you need a refresher on the GCRN Universal Rating Scale you can check that out by clicking here!

If you are interested in our past Roundups you can check them out here.

February Movie Roundup

March Movie Roundup

April Movie Roundup

May Movie Roundup


Wonder Woman

Release Date: 6-2-2017
Director: Patty Jenkins
Genre: Superhero

Quick Take:
(By OptimusSolo)

Wonder Woman did exactly what it needed to for the DC Cinematic Universe. It breathed new life into a universe that was sadly suffocating. Gal Gadot was picture perfect in the role as many of us expected given her exposure in Batman v Superman. Chris Pine was dazzling as well. The picturesque Thimescira, made me want to see an entire movie dedicated to that world. The humor was well placed and well played and the action sequences were ‘fist bump’ worthy. Perhaps the only missteps in this adventure were the under utilization of Dr. Poison and the misuse entirely of Ares. That coupled with a terrible final action sequence and some fairly atrocious CGI leave this film looking up towards a few higher caliber superhero films in 2017. Don’t worry though, if we narrow the scope to solely DC films, it currently stands alone at the top of the heap.

Quick Take:
(By HardCandiMandi)

DC Definitely came through here with Wonder Woman. The visuals, the action, the characters, and the story were all above par. I was completely taken with Thimescira, I loved the visuals we get and would have loved to have been able to see more of their day to day life and society. As Diana grows and trains, I was able to truly vest in her character. Gal Gadot really sold me with her performance. The demonstrations of her strength and abilities were marvelous! Her accomplices were understated but artfully composed, each with their own personalities showcased in intriguing and interesting ways. This was an action packed film with so much heart, it would be impossible to not enjoy the ride it took us on.


The Mummy

Release Date: 6-9-2017
Director: Alex Kurtzman
Genre: Fantasy

Quick Take:
(By OptimusSolo)

Alex Kurtzman has yet to do anything that impresses me in the cinematic world and that streak continues with this year’s Mummy. Although Sofia Boutella again proves she has what it takes to make a convincing and formidable villain, unfortunately the movie doesn’t have much else going for it. At times it is fun to look at and contains a few visually stunning set pieces but even that is not a consistent aspect of the film throughout.  The film also does have some cool little nods here and there to the films that came before it. Perhaps, the biggest problem in this film, outside of the writing was actually its main star. Tom Cruise does little to elevate the material here and is almost out shined by every supporting character we come across, including a nice twist from a character played by Russell Crowe. The only exception to that is Jake Johnson who apparently was in an entirely different movie from the rest of the cast and gave a performance that was very jarring when put up against the rest of the film. Although, this film may excite some for the ‘Dark Universe’, it certainly did not have that effect on me.

Quick Take:
(By HardCandiMandi)

I had a lot of fun with this flick! I am a huge fan of the Brendan Fraser story lines of the Mummy, so I had high hopes going into the theatre. It wasn’t as awe-inspiring as I’d hoped, but worked very well as a solid set up film for Universal’s Dark Universe. I was pleasantly surprised to see that one of the characters was a well known figure in the genre and was portrayed really well by the actor who portrayed him (Name omitted for Spoiler purposes). It was also super cool to see some hints as to what we will be seeing in future chapters of the Dark Universe.


Transformers: The Last Knight

Release Date: 6-21-2017
Director: Michael Bay
Genre: Science Fiction

Quick Take:
(By OptimusSolo)

Right when you thought this embattled franchise couldn’t get any worse…it somehow did. It’s as if Michael Bay hadn’t already destroyed every ounce of cool that this franchise once represented that he decided he needed to take one final blow. It’s like he has hear EVERY single criticism levied at the franchise and said, ‘you know what, I’m going to give them MORE of ALL of that’! Heck, he even tries to shoehorn in every single actor that has appeared within the franchise previously no matter how absurd their appearance is. This film is awful in almost every possible sense. The plot is so full of holes, I’m not even going to begin to break it down. All that would accomplish would be to incense my passion once again. The film was set up at the end of the last film as a story that was going to center on the Transformers themselves, that didn’t happen. The marketing made it seem like Optimus Prime was going to be at the front and center of this chapter, that wasn’t true. Once again, Bay proves that he has no respect for the franchise of the HUNDREDS of characters that existed previously within the different comics or television series and feels the need to create new characters that come across as thin and lifeless as the cardboard the toys use to be sold on. The movie tries to build stakes by killing off characters we never cared about, it gives us another helping of crude toilet humor that even juveniles won’t find funny. This is a dumpster fire in every sense of the word. The only good thing about this film is that it has been reported that this is the LAST film in the series that Michael Bay will have his immature and uninspired hands on. GOOD RIDDANCE!

Quick Take:
(By HardCandiMandi)

O-M-GEE please just stop already! This movie was hot garbage. There were too many characters we don’t care about. There were too many plot holes and things completely ignored. There was not enough cool action scenes. There was too much jumping around (I had no idea where they were half the time or why they needed to be there). It was way to convoluted (I had no idea what they were trying to do at any given point or why). There were too many comedic moments that fell flat. I could hardly stay awake in this. Don’t waste your time or money on this. Michael Bay can give me more Bad Boys and leave the Sci-Fi genre alone. Stop taking things we loved as kids and ruining them.


It Comes at Night

Release Date: 6-9-2017
Director: Trey Edward Shults
Genre: Thriller

Quick Take:
(By OptimusSolo)

It Comes at Night may not work for everybody but it most certainly worked for this movie goer. I loved the way it balanced the tension and the information, leaving you wanting more at just about every step of the way. Joel Edgerton is amazing as always and I am a big fan of films that have multiple possible interpretations.  I’m also a big fan of films that have a limited setting and a limited cast which allows us to really focus on the characters and the decisions they make, especially when faced with unique and interesting situations. This film will give you as much as you are willing to put into it. It’s easily one of the best films I’ve seen this year.

Quick Take:
(By HardCandiMandi)

I am a huge fan of horror and suspense, as you probably can tell from any number of our episodes on the Cinema Geeks and this film I was highly anticipating not only because of its genre, but also for Joel Edgerton (who I have seen nothing but great things from lately). This story used tension in a wonderful way. It slowly built it up and kept it going to the very end! Much like It Follows from 2015, minimalism was the main tool, but unfortunately, I still wanted and needed more. It left too many questions unanswered and too much ambiguity for my taste.


Rough Night

Release Date: 6-16-2017
Director: Lucia Aniello
Genre: Comedy

Quick Take:
(By HardCandiMandi)

I was pretty disappointed with this watch. After seeing the trailer 7,000 times I had practically seen all of the funniest moments that this film had to offer. I was shocked that even these heavy  hitters on the big screen as well as specifically in comedy couldn’t make me laugh out loud even once. I was expecting to walk out of the theatre having peed my pants because of how hard I had laughed. Instead it all it elicited from me was a few smirks at a couple jokes. Kate McKinnon was definitely the bright spot of the movie for me, but even her character was hardly even believable due to the over-the-top approach through out. I needed more antics and more shenanigans and most of all more laughs. The ‘R’ rating was not used to its full potential by a long shot. For a raunchy ladies debauchery film it was pretty tame, in my opinion.


All Eyez on Me

Release Date: 6-16-2017
Director: Benny Boom
Genre: Biopic

Quick Take:
(By OptimusSolo)

I came into this year thinking All Eyez on Me had the potential to be this years Straight Outta Compton and boy was I wrong. This movie lacked focus in the worst way and instead fell into the same traps we have seen so many other biopics succumb to over the years. Instead of focusing on one specific event or time period and doing it well, it tries to cover the entire life of Tupac Shakur and in doing so simply glosses over the most interesting aspects of the story. There is an interesting story here to tell, Benny Boom just simply chose not to tell it. This will easily be one of my biggest disappointments on the year.

Quick Take:
(By HardCandiMandi)

After how amazing Straight Outta Compton was, I was pumped to see another bio-pic that was raw and real about some high profile people within the rap game. This, however, was no Straight Outta Compton. It was too embellished and felt too much like a movie to allow us to really see things through Tupac’s eyes. Demitrius Shipp Jr. was born to play Tupac on looks alone, but his performance solidified his role. Besides that and the dope soundtrack, this movie was boring and lacked something that would make it as great as the before mentioned entry into this genre.

 


The LEGO Batman Movie

Release Date: 2-10-2017
Director: Chris McKay
Genre: Animated/Superhero

Quick Take:
(By OptimusSolo)

The LEGO Batman Movie had one of the most attention grabbing openings I’ve seen all year. Unfortunately it absolutely refused to takes its foot off of the gas for the entire remainder of its running time. I’m sure younger generations will adore the frenetic pace of this film but I couldn’t help but wonder if my lack of any sort of attention disorder was leaving me on the outside looking in. There is a lot of clever dialogue and humor here that wasn’t entirely lost on me. I just wish at times it would have pumped the breaks a bit in order to let us settle in to any type of comfortability. The voice acting is pretty well done and the writing is top notch and it still has a chance of going down as one of the best American animated film of the year, but in a year where it’s competition is Nut Job 2, Despicable Me 3, Cars 3 and The Emoji Movie, that may not be saying much.

Quick Take:
(By HardCandiMandi)

Definitely not as fun as the Lego Movie…it was cool getting into this new little slice of the Lego land, but it was too quick to throw ALL of the characters at you and didn’t give you enough time to enjoy the humor. It felt very ADHD. That may be because I’m an adult and my attention span is much longer than most children but I definitely got that feeling during the film. I do know that I didn’t have as much fun with this Lego joint as I did with the first despite my love for DC Characters, especially villains. Great voice work though!


Baby Driver

Release Date: 6-28-2017
Director: Edgar Wright
Genre: Action

Quick Take:
(By OptimusSolo)

Baby Driver provided all the fun and action that you would expect from a summer film. More summer blockbusters should take notice on how this can be done. Edgar Wright’s attention to detail and the aesthetics of this film are impeccable. Ansel Elgort and Lily James are magnetic on screen and Kevin Spacey and Jon Hamm chew heartily on every scene they are in. Some will have problem’s with Jamie Foxx’s character or certain twists and character decisions in the final act. I will admit that the final act does seem to go a bit off the rails. However, it’s not enough to detract from the pure fun you will get while watching this little gem, a film that undoubtedly will give you enjoyment and new details on multiple future viewings.

Quick Take:
(By HardCandiMandi)

Super solid action flick! The characters were cool and the driving scenes were even better. It took a fresh approach to the heist film and gave its main character heart, drive (no pun intended) and purpose that made you love him. This was an intense thrill ride that was able to give you a feel good, but realistic ending. I loved the way the soundtrack was so intricately incorporated in what was going on in the film, so much so that even subtle actions/movements matched up perfectly to a song beat. Over all it was a very enjoyable ride.


Okja

Release Date: 6-28-2017
Director: Bong Joon-ho
Genre: Drama

Quick Take:
(By OptimusSolo)

Okja is an interesting film that tackles a lot of grand concepts. It also has some impressive visuals, decent pacing and decent performances from it’s cast. Critics have generally loved the film but I don’t think it’s one that I would recommend to many, especially non-movie buffs. For me, the movie did not strike enough of a balance to its varied thematic questions and came off as overtly heavy handed and on the nose. Perhaps it just failed with me because it was unable to make me feel guilty for the lifestyle I have chosen to lead or maybe it just chose a vehicle that wasn’t able to elicit the emotions it wanted to from me. This is in no way a ‘bad’ film, simply one I am not going to be remembering at the end of the year nor recommending to people throughout the year. Tilda Swinton is decent but doing the same thing we have seen from her over and over, Jake Gyllenhaal’s performance didn’t work for me in any way and may be one of my least favorite roles I’ve ever seen from him. Again, I don’t want to make it seem like this is bad and I did give it a favorable rating, this is just one of those films that when you see it has an 85% on Rotten Tomatoes or some number in that ballpark, just remember, it’s because everyone else was giving it 3-3.5 stars not 4.5-5.

Quick Take:
(By HardCandiMandi)

I was legitimately disturbed by this movie. As an animal lover and someone who eats, and enjoys meat, I was unsettled by much of this film. Its agenda was heavy handed and its characters with the exception of a small few, were extremely over the top. To top it off there was a horrific animal on animal rape scene that I could have gone a life time without seeing. I’m going to need therapy after watching this. I’m sending the bill to Netflix, Attention: Bong Joon Ho.


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