Tag Archives: Maria Bello

The Jane Austen Book Club

SIX MONTHS. SIX NOVELS. SIX MEMBERS.  Screenwriter Robin Swicord has adapted many novels in the past and this project seemed fitting for her feature film directing debut, a story depicting six people who form a book club devoted to Jane Austen’s novels. We follow them over the course of six months and fans of the … Continue reading The Jane Austen Book Club

Grown Ups 2

THEY’LL DO ANYTHING FOR THEIR FAMILIES… EXCEPT GROW UP. The original had these characters on a holiday trip, but this sequel lets us just follow their small-town lives at home. The idea is to say something about the need to keep a childhood sensibility while also trying to be a role model to your children… … Continue reading Grown Ups 2

The Company Men

BIG BUSINESS JUST CUT THE WRONG GUYS. When a Boston shipbuilding giant starts downsizing, Bobby Walker (Ben Affleck) loses his job, but he’s far from the only victim. TV producer and writer John Wells’s feature directing debut is a comment on the Great Recession of 2008, where we follow several white-collar workers and how they … Continue reading The Company Men


EVERY MOMENT MATTERS. When two young girls disappear in a small town, police come up with a suspect (Paul Dano) but not enough to build a case; one of the girls’ father (Hugh Jackman) refuses to accept it. Director Denis Villeneuve’s first American film is a thriller that explores the horror of losing a child … Continue reading Prisoners

Grown Ups

SOME GUYS NEED A LITTLE EXTRA TIME TO MATURE. Five childhood buddies (Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Chris Rock, David Spade, Rob Schneider) reunite for their basketball coach’s funeral… and spend a tumultuous Fourth of July weekend with their wives and kids in a rented house. The Big Chill for the Sandler generation? As expected, all … Continue reading Grown Ups


THE FIGHT FOR THE TRUTH WILL BE THE FIGHT OF HIS LIFE. When teenager Nathan Harper (Taylor Lautner) finds out the truth about his parents (Jason Isaacs, Maria Bello), he has to start running from both the CIA and a Russian terrorist (Michael Nyqvist). This first attempt to try Lautner’s popularity outside the Twilight franchise is an action thriller … Continue reading Abduction

Thank You for Smoking

AMERICA IS LIVING IN SPIN. Tobacco industry lobbyist Nick Naylor (Aaron Eckhart) is faced with two challenges – coming up with a way to get modern consumers to spend more money on cigarettes, and getting to know his son (Cameron Bright) better. Ivan Reitman’s son Jason made his feature film debut with this impressive comedy, a … Continue reading Thank You for Smoking

The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor

A NEW EVIL AWAKENS. Rick and Evelyn O’Connell (Brendan Fraser, Maria Bello) are coaxed out of retirement when the British government needs their help protecting a precious diamond as it is transported to China; unfortunately, the gem has the power to bring dead armies back to life. Rob Cohen has replaced Stephen Sommers as director, which … Continue reading The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor

The Cooler

WHEN YOUR LIFE DEPENDS ON LOSING… THE LAST THING YOU NEED IS LADY LUCK. Bernie Lootz (William H. Macy), a depressing loner, makes a living bringing bad luck to lucky customers at a Las Vegas casino; when he falls in love with Natalie Belisario (Maria Bello), things change. I love the smooth opening credits, with glitzy … Continue reading The Cooler

A History of Violence

EVERYONE HAS SOMETHING TO HIDE. After killing two criminals, Tom Stall (Viggo Mortensen), the supposedly peaceful owner of a diner, lands in the news spotlight; soon, a disfigured man (Ed Harris) walks into his diner and insists on calling Tom Joey… More conventional than many other David Cronenberg films, but still recognizable to aficionados. The … Continue reading A History of Violence

Secret Window

SOME WINDOWS SHOULD NEVER BE OPENED. Writer Mort Rainey (Johnny Depp) mopes around his cabin, trying to get his next book organized, but then a Southern stranger (John Turturro) shows up on his doorstep and accuses him of plagiarism. Stephen King’s story starts out with a similar theme to his “Misery”, but turns into something … Continue reading Secret Window