Spike Jonze’s ‘Her’ is as excellent as its five Oscar nominations would indicate

Joaquin Phoenix and Amy Adams in 'Her'
Joaquin Phoenix and Amy Adams in ‘Her’

[rating=4]Starring:  Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, Scarlett Johansson, Rooney Mara, Olivia Wilde, Portia Doubleday, Matt Letscher, Chris Pratt and Kristen Wiig
Writer(s):  Spike Jonze
Director(s):  Spike Jonze

If someone could figure out a way to bottle and sell the whimsy of Spike Jonze, they would make an insane amount of money.  His fourth film, Her, is as imaginative as any of the prior three and a very thought-provoking movie.

Read moreSpike Jonze’s ‘Her’ is as excellent as its five Oscar nominations would indicate

There is little real magic in ‘The Incredible Burt Wonderstone’

Steve Carell in 'The Incredible Burt Wonderstone'
Steve Carell in ‘The Incredible Burt Wonderstone’

[rating=2]Starring:  Steve Carrell, Steve Buscemi, Olivia Wilde, Jim Carrey, James Gandolfini, Alan Arkin, Jay Mohr and Brad Garrett
Writer(s):  Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley (screenplay and story); Chad Kultgen and Tyler Mitchell (story)
Director(s):  Don Scardino

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone is a story of friendship, magic and the power of both to astound.  It could have been a really good film.  However, like an illusion involving levitation where the wires can clearly be seen, it was ultimately less than satisfying.

Read moreThere is little real magic in ‘The Incredible Burt Wonderstone’

‘Butter’ is a brilliantly written film & a joy to watch

Jennifer Garner stars in 'Butter'
Jennifer Garner stars in ‘Butter’

Butter is one of those brilliantly written films that is a joy to watch.  Screenwriter Jason Micallef’s script was so good, it won him a prestigious Nicholl fellowship in 2008, one of only five such awards handed out to writers by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences.  Now his script has been brought to the big screen and the finished product is a real winner.

Read more‘Butter’ is a brilliantly written film & a joy to watch