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HDTV Magazine Reviews Archive (January, 2012)

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Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: Moneyball

By Ryan Gibbs • Jan 20 2012, 3:30pm

Based on a true story, Moneyball is a movie for anybody who has ever dreamed of taking on the system. Brad Pitt stars as Billy Beane, the general manager of the Oakland A's and the guy who assembles the team, who has an epiphany: all of baseball's conventional wisdom is wrong. Forced to reinvent his team on a tight budget, Beane will have to outsmart the richer clubs. The onetime jock teams with Ivy League grad Peter Brand (Jonah Hill) in an unlikely partnership, recruiting bargain players that the scouts call flawed, but all of whom have an ability to get on base, score runs, and win games. It's more than baseball, it's...

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: The Change-Up

By Ryan Gibbs • Jan 18 2012, 3:18pm

Growing up together, Mitch (Ryan Reynolds) and Dave (Jason Bateman) were inseparable best friends, but as the years have passed they've slowly drifted apart. While Dave is an overworked lawyer, husband and father of three, Mitch has remained a single, quasi-employed man-child who has never met a responsibility he liked. To Mitch, Dave has it all: beautiful wife Jamie (Leslie Mann), kids who adore him and a high-paying job at a prestigious law firm. To Dave, living Mitch's stress-free life without obligation or consequence would be a dream come true. Following a drunken night out together, Mitch and Dave's worlds are turned upside down when they wake up...

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: Contagion

By The HT Guys • Jan 17 2012, 3:47pm

Soon after her return from a business trip to Hong Kong, Beth Emhoff dies from what is a flu or some other type of infection. Her young son dies later the same day. Her husband Mitch however seems immune. Thus begins the spread of a deadly infection. For doctors and administrators at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, several days pass before anyone realizes the extent or gravity of this new infection. They must first identify the type of virus in question and then find a means of combating it, a process that will likely take several months. As the contagion spreads to millions of people worldwide, societal order begins to break down as people panic.

Contagion is not a emotionally driven thriller that tugs at your heartstrings. It plays more like a...

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: Mr. Popper's Penguins

By The HT Guys • Jan 12 2012, 3:38pm

In this live-action adaptation of Richard and Florence Atwater's classic children's book, Jim Carrey takes on the titular role of Mr. Popper, a businessman who inherits a small flock of penguins and must transform his Manhattan apartment into an arctic habitat.

Mr. Poppers Penguins is a warm hearted family film that addresses important issues of family in a very unconventional way. The story unique with a ridicules premise, that requires you to leave reality behind. Somehow this movie is able to walk fine line of being completely silly and sensitive at the same time. This is mostly due to Jim Carrey's performance. It's nice to see him in a comedy that doesn't require him to make a fool of himself. His charisma and comedic timing carry the film and make it charming. The movie handles the dark topics of...

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: Kung Fu Panda 2

By The HT Guys • Jan 10 2012, 3:33pm

As the legendary Dragon Warrior, Po (Jack Black), the kung fu panda, dutifully guards the Valley of Peace alongside his allies the Furious Five. When a frightful new enemy emerges, Po and company embark on a perilous journey to save China and the art of kung fu.

Kung Fu Panda 2 does of great job of entertaining audiences of any age. In the first Kung Fu Panda, Po proved himself to be the true dragon warrior. In this sequel he is challenged with the difficult task of...

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: Rise of the Planet of the Apes

By The HT Guys • Jan 9 2012, 3:00pm

James Franco headlines the reboot of the immensely popular Planet of the Apes franchise, a prequel which boasts cutting-edge CGI effects and a gripping story set in modern-day San Francisco, where scientists are conducting genetic research on apes. The evolved primates, including Caesar (Andy Serkis), develop advanced intelligence and revolt against being used as lab rats, unleashing a war for dominion over Earth.

When I first heard they were making another Planet of the Apes movie, I thought it was a horrible idea. Boy was I wrong. Along with Star Trek and Batman, this film is...

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: Fright Night

By The HT Guys • Jan 6 2012, 3:57pm

This update of the 1985 horror comedy focuses more on terror than laughs when teen Charley Brewster (Anton Yelchin) suspects that his new neighbor, the sinister Jerry Dandrige (Colin Farrell), is a vampire, and turns to a self-styled vampire expert, Peter Vincent (David Tennant), for help. Las Vegas magician Vincent proves useless, and it's up to Charley to save his mom, Jane (Toni Collette), and girlfriend, Amy, from the seductive bloodsucker.

I was a fan of the original Fright Night and had high expectations for this remake and was not let down. Fright Night is still bloody, funny, and full of scares. I was glad that it...

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: Cowboys & Aliens

By The HT Guys • Jan 5 2012, 3:54pm

It’s 1873 when gunslinger Jake Lonergan (Daniel Craig) awakens in the Arizona desert with no memory of his past and a mysterious metal shackle encircling his wrist. Stumbling into the nearby town of Absolution, Lonergan discovers a tightly closed community that takes its orders from the iron-fisted Colonel Woodrow Dolarhyde (Harrison Ford) — and Dolarhyde has a bone to pick with Lonergan. But the colonel’s influence wanes when the desolate city is attacked by monsters that drop from the sky with blinding force and abduct the helpless townsfolk one by one. As Lonergan’s memory slowly returns, he realizes he holds a secret that could give the town a fighting chance against the alien force. With the help of mysterious beauty Ella (Olivia Wilde), he assembles a posse comprised of former opponents: townsfolk, Dolarhyde and his boys, outlaws and Apache warriors. United against a common enemy, they prepare for an epic showdown for survival.

When I heard that Daniel Craig and Harrison ...

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: Conan the Barbarian

By The HT Guys • Jan 4 2012, 3:47pm

Based on the pulp fiction of Robert E. Howard, this action-driven adventure breathes new life into the story of Conan the Barbarian, a warrior who rises to defend the people of Hyboria after evil forces slaughter his family and fellow villagers.

I’m a fan of the original Conan movie, I even read a few Conan comic books, so I had high hopes for this movie. All my dreams and hopes for a good Conan movie...

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Review: 3:10 to Yuma

By The HT Guys • Jan 3 2012, 3:43pm

In this remake of the 1957 classic, Dan Evans agrees to transport the captured outlaw Ben Wade to the nearest town with a rail station, where they'll catch a ride to court in Yuma. But all the while, Wade's henchmen are plotting their next move.

3:10 to Yuma is not a standard good verses evil type of movie. It's a complicated film that dares to dive into the hearts of the characters in the story. The movie was...