3 watchable movies we saw recently in the theater

My wife and I have been going to movies recently. We’re seeing old friends and since they’re not heavy drinkers (one is married to a recovering alcoholic and the other has 2 young kids), movies are a great choice.

Of the three, Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves is our favorite. We’ve already seen it twice.

Note that we won’t see any woke movie. I’m tired of the woke bullshit. Yeah, a lot of y’all make fun of the new Top Gun and I’ll tell you straight up why we enjoyed it. Imagine being in San Francisco for several years where all you hear is America sucks, white people suck, white people are what’s wrong with everything in the world, Trump is Hitler, Trump is worse than Hitler, masculinity is toxic, anyone who didn’t get the jab should be put to death.

No, I’m not exaggerating. I’ve ended several friendships, some of whom I’ve been friends with for over a decade.

If someone disagrees with me but can be chill and normal, all good. I don’t mind disagreement. I’m just sick of all the woke bullshit and the endless lectures from people who have suck ass lives.

So, that’s my defense of the new Top Gun. No, it wasn’t great. But it was pro-America and a welcome relief to what I’ve been surrounded by for several years of my life, which should have been the absolute best years because at the time, we had money and we saw Allie and Roxy often.

OK, rant mode off. Back to the movies.

Now one more disclaimer – yes, I took 1 semester of Film in college and sat in for 2 more. I understand film. I’ve written papers on great movies. But sometimes, you go to the movies to have a good time.

It’s like Tchaikovsky vs Judas Priest. Tchaikovsky is great music. Judas Priest is music I’m blaring and drinking to.

Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves

Last night, my buddy M told me that Chris Pine and Chris Pratt are two different people. Oops. I thought it was the same guy.

Chris Pine, Michelle Rodriguez, and Hugh Grant star in Dungeons and Dragons: Honor Among Thieves.

Now, I’ve seen almost every movie the D&D franchise put out. They range from mediocre to “holy shit, what the fuck were we watching?”

Finally, they get one right. So as stated above, no, not a movie you’ll watch in film school. Just make some popcorn, open a bottle of whiskey, and enjoy.

Chris Pine and Michelle Rodriguez are best friends. Pine’s a chaotic good Bard who has a knack for getting in trouble. Michelle Rodriguez is a bad ass fighter. In other words, Rodriguez plays the same character she plays in every movie she’s in.

But it works.

They go on an epic quest to retrieve a lost relic. I won’t go into the why because it will give away too much.

I will however tell you that it’s a watchable movie, and the two people we went with were NOT D&D fans and still loved it.

There were several hidden gems that appeal to D&D geeks. Even a quick nod to the Dungeons and Dragons cartoon from the 80s (first two seasons were excellent. Skip the 3rd season).

Pine’s charisma + the relationship between Pine and Rodriguez carried the movie. The rest of the characters were decent and worked, but forgettable. Except for Hugh Grant. He played a great bad guy.

And you got to see genuine character arcs. The new Star Wars writers should be taking notes.

Every good guy had an Achilles Heel that they had to overcome. There were no Mary Sue’s.

Last – gorgeous scenery. See it in the theater if you can. It’s aesthetically pleasing.

With humor sprinkled throughout. No rolling on the floor laughs. Just cute quick laughs or smirks. You’ll come away from the theater feeling good and considering how fucked everything is nowadays, it’s worth the money.

The Pope’s Exorcist

On a completely different note – a horror.

Have you ever seen the 70s movie The Exorcist? If so, these two movies have a lot of similarities. A lot. Almost too much.

Russell Crowe plays Father Gabriel Amorth. Yes, a real life person. Father Amorth was the Pope’s Exorcist in real life until his retirement.

Now, disclaimer. Something personal.

I’m a believer in Jesus Christ. I don’t call myself a Christian because Christian means “Christ like” and I’m far from it.

I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, came to this world, was crucified, and resurrected 3 days later.

I’m technically Protestant. But unlike other Protestants, I see the big 3 as equal. I do not thumb my nose at those of the Catholic or Orthodox faiths. Those are good people. And personally, I wish us Protestants would take aesthetics as seriously as they do. Our aesthetics suck ass. Our churches are hideous. And yes, it does piss me off. Because too many Protestants think this world is just a test.

I think this world is important. But more on that another day.

The strengths – showed Christianity in a good light. Hollywood usually hates us so it’s a welcome relief to see something positive about us.

Russell Crowe is cool. He’s an awesome actor. And the guy who played the second Priest did a good job as well.

Aesthetically, a pleasing movie.

The bad – too close to the 70s movie. I don’t know. I’ve never been at an exorcism and hopefully never will. But those two movies were too similar. I think you would enjoy this movie more if you didn’t see the 70s one.

Yes, it had some frightening scenes. If you see it to get scared, you’ll get your money’s worth.

Overall though, we both enjoyed it. I really liked seeing Russell Crowe on a white Ferrari scooter. Get the reference?

And you also get to see character arcs. Father Amorth did fight in WWII and did survive while seeing his friends get killed. That really did happen. And did fail before and you’ll see the demon use both of those weaknesses against him. The 2nd Priest fell in love with a beautiful woman and the demon used that against him as well.

The Super Mario Bros Movie

OK folks. Seriously. Leave your brain at the door.

Do not go into this movie as an adult.

Just don’t. Otherwise, it will be stupid and you won’t have a good time.

The Mrs and I watched this last night with an old friend whose kids are now 11 and 9. Last time we saw them both, they were toddlers.

And our buddy, he knew to turn off his brain and be a kid. So the five of us all watched the movie AS KIDS.

This is key.

And it was awesome!

Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Toad, and Donkey Kong starred in Super Mario Bros Movie.

Mario is a loser. He quit his job and took Luigi with him because his boss is a dickhead and Mario put his life savings into a television commercial.

His former boss confronts him and reminds him that he’s a loser and he’ll never make it on his own. Mario’s own father doesn’t believe in him. Someone in his family (I forgot who) told Mario that he shouldn’t have taken Luigi with him. If he’s going to fail, don’t make Luigi a failure as well.

So, the movie starts off at the bottom. It can’t get worse. Mario’s a loser and it’s bad enough that he’s a loser. He now unemployed his little brother as well.

Luigi however thinks the world of his big brother. He doesn’t see him as a loser. He sees him as a go-getter. An inspiration.

And by a twist of fate, they end up in another dimension.

Note to Star Wars 7-9 writers – this is how you develop protagonists.

Bowser’s the bad guy. He wants to take over the mushroom kingdom, which is ruled by Princess Peach. Whose a total babe btw. Next time I see Allie, I’ll have her do a photoshoot where she starts off in a Princess Peach outfit and gradually disrobes.

And there’s Toad. Most of the mushroom people are regular people but Toad really wants to be a hero. He latches onto Mario right away and announces to Mario that they’re best friends. Toad plays a vital role which I won’t give away (would be a spoiler).

And there’s Donkey Kong. The mushroom people can’t fight. When Bowser attacks, the mushroom people would be completely fucked. So Princess Peach drags along Mario (who needs to save his brother Luigi from Bowser’s lava) to make an alliance with the Kong’s.

The interplay between Mario and Donkey Kong is excellent. There are some Rocky Balboa moments in there, and they’re well done.

These writers can write. Each character has at least one flaw. All the relationships are imperfect. Luigi’s downfall is that he trusts his brother too much. And as the rest of the world knows, Mario is a loser.

Even Bowser has a weakness and it’s quite funny.

But once again – if you do not do the following thing, you will not enjoy this movie:

Leave your brain at the door and watch it as if you were a kid.

If you played the games, you’ll really like this movie. A lot of cute gags sprinkled in throughout.

One thing that appealed to me personally – the good guys had as much trouble on the rainbow bridge as I did. I fucking hated that level and hated when my opponent wanted to play on it.

Maybe that’s universal because it was in the movie.

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