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20 June 2016

[Disney's] Alice Through The Looking Glass

 A mad adventure of the unpossible sort!

 When The Hatter is not himself his friends become gravely concerned; so, Alice is called upon to return to Wonderland in an effort to save him. As it is a past tragedy which has vexed her dear friend, Alice is compelled to undertake a most dangerous quest through time. And, one ought to be especially careful when traveling into the past... or everything shall be made dust!

 This film is well performed and superbly set, with a remarkable story well directed.

Grade: B
Rating: PG

Johnny Depp; Mia Wasikowska; Anne Hathaway; Helena Bonham Carter; and, Sacha Baron Cohen.
Matt Lucas; Ed Speleers; Michael Sheen; Lindsay Duncan; and, Matt Vogel.
Stephen Fry; Timothy Spall; Leo Bill; Paul Whitehouse; and, Barbara Windsor.
Rhys Ifans; Richard Armitage; Hattie Morahan; Amelia Crouch; and, Leilah de Meza.
Alan Rickman!

Writer: Linda Woolverton
From The Works Of: Lewis Carroll
Director: James Bobin
04 June 2016
Reel Reviews by Frank Jaymes

Captain America: Civil War

 A Mighty Epic!

 The Avengers have hunted the globe for those who have made war against liberty and escaped justice. There has been much collateral damage, innocents have died. Nations unite demanding accords and many heroes agree to be so sanctioned. But, Captain America will not be chained... especially when a hero is wrongly blamed for murder!

 This film is brilliantly written and superbly directed, with remarkable performances and sets.

A / PG2

Chris Evans; Robert Downey, Jr; Scarlett Johansson; Sebastian Stan; Anthony Mackie; and, Chadwick Boseman
Elizabeth Olsen; Emily VanCamp; Paul Bettany; Jeremy Renner; Don Cheadle; and, William Hurt
Paul Rudd; Tom Holland; Martin Freeman; John Slattery; Daniel Bruhl; and, John Kani
Marisa Tomei; Hope Davis; and, Alfre Woodard

Writers: Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely
From the Works of: Mark Millar and Steve McNiven
Directors: Anthony Russo and Joe Russo
reposted from 09 May 2016
Reel Reviews By Frank Jaymes

X-Men: Apocalypse

 Dynamic with future promise!

 1983, a time of excess and progress, when the distant past has been reborn to conquer, command and destroy! Humankind has feared Mutantkind for twenty years. Now, it would seem their fear is justified. An ancient evil is risen; and so, will rise a modern force to defeat it... but can any force stop an apocalypse!?

 This film is masterfully written and set, with superb direction and performances.

Grade: A
Rating: PG

 James McAvoy; Michael Fassbender; Jennifer Lawrence; Oscar Isaac;  Sophie Turner; and, Olivia Munn
 Evan Peters; Kodi Smit-McPhee; Tye Sheridan; Nicholas Hoult; Rose Byrne; and, Alexandra Shipp
 Lucas Till; Josh Helman; Lana Condor; Ben Hardy; Carolina Bartczak; and, TJ McGibbon
 Tomas Lemarquis; Zehra Leverman; and, Ally Sheedy
 James Malloch

 Bryan Singer; Simon Kinberg; Dan Harris; and, Michael Dougherty
From The Works Of:
 Louise Simonson; Walter Simonson; Chris Claremont; Terry Kavanagh;  Joe Pruett; Fabian Nicieza; Eric Larsen; Scott Lobdell; Peter  David; Brandon Peterson; Jae Lee; Andy Kubert; and, Greg Capullo
 Bryan Singer
reposted from 28 May 2016
Reel Reviews by Frank Jaymes

“A Moon For The Misbegotten”

 Not your typical tale of virtue.
 In 1923, Connecticut, a gruff, often drunk, father’s scheme to save the family farm is fouled when his wanton daughter’s heart is set upon a womanizing man with dreams of returning to his former city life.
 This play is well directed with an excellent story, brilliantly set and well performed. Kate Forbes and Mark Lambert are outstanding.

Written By:  Eugene O’Neill
Directed By: Ben Barnes
Starring:  Kate Forbes and Mark Lambert
Featuring: Donald Sage Mackay
 Augustus Cuddy and Michael Quinlan

B / PG2
Reel Reviews by Frank Jaymes
reposted from 02 April 2016

[Batman v. Superman] Dawn Of Justice

A terrific thrill!

True villainy is often unrecognized in the light of day and monsters thrive at night. Twenty years ago, from tragedy, a vigilant nightmare was born. Eighteen months ago, terror fell from the heavens. Now, deadly menace is threatening, people cry for justice, the world is in conflict, and heroes battle against impending doom...!

The intrepid reporter, Lois Lane is determined to ferret out the demon responsible for a coup in the middle east which nearly cost her life, a coup for which Superman is blamed. Clark Kent is determined to expose the bat vigilante terrorizing the criminals of Gotham. Bruce Wayne would like nothing more than to reveal the demon supplying extraordinary weaponry to terrorists and criminals alike. But, it is the sinister machinations of Lex Luther with which they all should be most concerned...!

This film is well performed and well directed, with a decent story and fantastic settings. This is the beginning of something special.

{DC Comics readers will recognize: "The Death of Superman"; "The Dark Knight Returns"; and, "Trinity War"!}

  Ben Affleck; Henry Cavill; Amy Adams; and, Jesse Eisenberg
  Diane Lane; Laurence Fishburne; Gal Gadot; Jeremy Irons; and, Holly Hunter
   Tao Okamoto; Rebecca Buller; Harry J Lennix; and, Christina Wren
   Michael Shannon; Carla Cugino; and, Kevin Costner

Director: Zack Snyder
Writers:  David Goyer and Chris Terrio
From The Works of:
  Frank Miller; Roger Stern; Louise Simonson; Dan Jurgens; Jerry Ordway; Ray Fawkes; Matt Kindt; and, Geoff Johns!

B / PG2
Reel Reviews By Frank Jaymes
reposted from 27 March 2016


Curious and stunning from the first moment!

  A young woman in Taipei is thrust into the field of theoretical evolution. With the world opening before her, she is reborn. Her rebirth has captured the attention of criminals, police and scientists. Her acquisition of knowledge and power has been violent and taken only a moment. In the next moment, an act of self preservation. Now, in her final moment, she must decide what to do with her life....

  Scarlett Johansson is superb! Brilliantly directed and set, this film is well written and should be seen by everyone with a curious mind.

Grade: A     Rating: PG2

  Scarlett Johannson; Morgan Freeman; Amr Waked; and, Min-Sik Choi
  Nicolas Phongpheth; Julian Rhind-Tutt; Pilou Asbaek; and, Analeigh Tipton
  Pierre Gerard; Isabelle Cagnat; Frederic Chau; and, Claire Tran
  Loic Brabant; Pierre Grammont; Pierre Poirot; and, Bertrand Quoiniam
  Sandra Abouav

Writer:   Luc Besson
Director: Luc Besson

reposted from 26 July 2014
Reel Reviews by Frank Jaymes

05 April 2015

The Mountaintop

  A Provocative Presentation!

  On the last night of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s life a young maid will off him hope, mercy, comfort ... and promise.

  Brilliantly written; amazingly performed; well directed; and, remarkably set, this play is a moving experience that should not be missed!

Royce Johnson and Joniece Abbott-Pratt

Writer:   Katori Hall
Director: Skip Greer 
A / PG2
04 April 2015
Reel Reviews by Jaymes

16 July 2013

Unforgettable On CBS

TV PICKS: Switched At Birth (FAM); Major Crimes (TNT); King & Maxwell (TNT); Under The Dome (CBS); Longmire (AET); Push Girls (SUN); Pretty Little Liars (FAM); Twisted (FAM); Covert Affairs (USA); Chopped (FOO); Mythbusters (SCI); Mythbusters (DSC); Royal Pains (USA); Futurama (CMY); South Park (CMY); Through The Wormhole (SCI); Burn Notice (USA); Degrassi (TNK); Phineas & Ferb (DXD); Kung-Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness (NIK); SpongeBob Squarepants (NIK); Beware the Batman (CAR); Transformers: Prime - Beast Hunters (HUB); Looney Tunes (CAR); Unforgettable (CBS); Doctor Who (PBS); Austin City Limits (PBS); Falling Skies (TNT); True Blood (HBO); and, Newsroom (HBO).

WHY DOME DOMINATES By Stephen Battaglio: ^Stephen King’s "Under The Dome" may provide the cure for broadcast television’s summertime blues. CBS exeutives breathed a collective sigh of relief after 13.5 million viewers tuned into the 24 June premiere of the disaster drama – the most for any summer drama series since 1992. The show picked-up another 3.2 million viewers when three days of DVR playback an on-demand viewing were calculated. The second episode’s live viewers numbered more than 11 million.^

VERY BAD BEHAVIOR ON "BIG BROTHER" By Rob Moynihan: ^"Big Brother" viewers are told every summer to expect the unexpected. But, fans tuning in to this year’s live feeds from have witnessed some disturbing behavior from the seemingly fun-loving house guests. Racism and homophobia run rampant. The game’s only Asian contestant, Helen Kim, has been verbally attacked with comments such as, "Go make some [fornicating] rice." Openly homosexual contestant, Andy Herren, was referred to with the use of multiple forms of contemptuous slang.^

IN THE NEWS: NBC has outbid History Channel for "A.D.: Beyond the Bible", the follow-up to the hugely successful "The Bible", produced by Mark Burnett. Gary Carr and Paul Giamatti join the cast of "Downton Abbey". Sasha Alexander and Angie Harmon praise their current story airing on [TNT’s] "Rizzoli & Isles". Disney Channel going ahead with it’s episodes of "Good Luck Charlie" featuring a preschooler with two mothers. Tinkerbell to be featured in Season 3 of [ABC’s] "Once Upon A Time"! On [FOX’s] "Bones" Booth and Brennan may yet be married. TV Guide columnist, William Keck, will be moderating panels for [FOX’s] "Bones" and [ABC’s] "Once Upon A Time" at this year’s San Diego Comic Con.

FANTASTIC VOYAGES By Matt Roush: The top ten Sci-Fi Television Shows include "Star Trek"; "Star Trek: The Next Generation"; "The Twilight Zone" (circa 1960); "The X-Files"; "Buffy, The Vampire Slayer"; and, "Game of Thrones".

CAN THIS BROMANCE BE SAVED By Damian Holbrook: ^All around the sprawling bull pen pf one of Manhattan’s ritziest law firms, first-year associates and ambitious clerks hurriedly deliver files, messages and coffee to their bosses. Meanwhile, a conversation in a swank corner office escalates into a moment every high-powered attorney dreams of: an overt threat to torpedo a shady colleague’s career, followed by a dramatic exit.^

FULL MOON FEVER By Damian Holbrook: ^MTV’s sexy werewolves are taking a bite out of the competition. The third season of "Teen Wolf" premiered 03 June and brought in the shows biggest audience to date.^

SAN DIEGO COMIC CON: William Keck will moderate panels for ABC and FOX. Josh Holloway will be promoting [CBS’s] "Intelligence". Candice Accola will sit on the "Vampire Diaries" panel. STARZ will screen the pilot for it’s high-seas drama, a prequel to [Robert Louis Stevenson’s] "Treasure Island", titled "Black Sails". Disney XD’s upcoming animated [Marvel] series, "Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H.", will be represented. Sean Astin and Corey Feldman may also be seen, representing "The Goonies" and [Nickelodeon’s] "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles"! FOX will be promoting it’s Saturday Late Night block of animated series for adults. ABC will screen "top secret Wonderland scenes" from the upcoming season of "Once Upon A Time"! Ronald Moore’s upcoming series "Helix" will also be represented and don’t be surprised to see something of his "Outland". And, kids will be thrilled to find Phineas and Ferb saving the day fro Marvel Heroes this summer. But, the biggest draw this year may be "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D" from ABC!

HIGHLIGHTS: Jerry O’Connell will appear with, his wife, Rebecca Romijn, in [TNT’s] "King & Maxwell". Allison Scagliotti, of [SYF’s] "Warehouse 13", will guest on [FAM’s] "Switched at Birth". "Whose Line is it Anyway" is back with Wayne Brady, Ryan Stiles, Colin Mochrie, and, new host, Aisha Tyler on The CW. "Covert Affairs" new season will debut 16 July on USA Network. ABC Family will air an introduction to it’s "Pretty Little Liars" spin-off, "Ravenwood". Tom Berenger will guest star on [TNT’s] "Major Crimes". National Geographic Channel will reveal the damage caused by sex trafficking. ABC will present unaired episodes of it’s cancelled series "Zero Hour". And, Poppy Montgomery is returning in all-new episodes of "Unforgettable" on CBS!

Screen Things By Frank Jaymes
From TV Guide
15 July 2013

19 May 2013

Star Trek: Into Darkness

Action Packed! Masterful!! Nostalgic!!!

Reprimanded for insubordination, James T. Kirk will bring the galaxy to the brink of war and face his deadliest nemesis... and Star Fleet’s greatest secret!

Brilliantly written and superbly directed with superior performances... this is the boldest Star Trek adventure yet!

A+ / PG

Starring: Chris Pine; Zachary Quinto; Zoe Saldana; Karl Urban; and, Benedict Cumberbatch
Featuring: Simon Pegg; John Cho; Anton Yelchin; and, Alice Eve.
With: Bruce Greenwood; Peter Weller; and, Noel Clarke.
Plus: Deep Roy and Heather Lagenkamp.
Writers: Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman
Director: JJ Abrams

Reel Reviews
By Frank Jaymes

For Fans: This film is loaded with reflection and recollection of Treks past...! Unfortunately, I was in attendance with the deadest audience ever! All that wicked kewl homage and they never seemed to notice!

30 August 2011

A Hollywood Mogul

SNEAK PEAK: Alex O’ Loughlin and Simon Baker in prison charged with murder – [CBS’] “Hawaii Five-O” and “The Mentalist” season premieres! And, ‘House’ is in the big house on FOX! [HBO’s] “True Blood” season finale (11 September) will finally reveal Sookie’s love choice! Sir Paul McCartney [producing? hosting? both?] a 9/11 benefit concert. FX’s firehouse (“Rescue Me”) is shutting down. The “Miracle Day” of ‘Torchwood’ is coming to a sacrificial end? And, the “Sons of Anarchy” are free.

PICKS OF THE WEEK: “Alphas” (SYF); “Ancient Aliens” (HIS); “Backdraft” (HBO); “Burn Notice” (USA); “Degrassi” (THN); “Dinosaur Revolution” (DSC); “Doctor Who” (BBC); “Eureka” (SYF); “Family Guy” (FOX); “Firebreather” (CAR); “Frontline” (PBS); “Futurama” (CMY); “General Hospital” (ABC); “Good Luck Charlie” (DIS); “Haven” (SYF); “History Detectives” (PBS); “Home Alone” (ENC); “Into The Universe” (DSC); “It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia” (CMY); “Jurassic Park CSI” (NGO); “LA Ink” (TLC); “Law & Order: UK” (BBC); “Masterpiece Mystery” (PBS); “Necessary Roughness” (USA); “Nova” (PBS); “Phineas & Ferb” (DIS); “POV” (PBS); “Pretty Little Liars” (FAM); “Ray” (BET); “Rizzoli & Isles” (TNT); “Royal Pains” (USA); “Secret Life [o/t] American Teenager” (FAM); “Sophie’s Choice” (FLX); “Suits” (USA); “The Big C” (SHO); “The Closer” (TNT); “The Graham Norton Show” (BBC); “The Looney Tunes Show” (CAR); “The Lying Game” (FAM); “The Simpsons” (FOX); “Thundercats” (CAR); “True Blood” (HBO); “Voltron Force” (CAR); “Warehouse 13" (SYF); and, “Weeds” (SHO).

IN THE NEWS: Ray Romano and Patricia Heaton coming to [ABC’s] “The Middle” (21 September). With ‘Stefan’ missing and ‘Jeremy’ seeing the dead, a birthday celebration may be unlikely for ‘Elena’ ([CW’s] “The Vampire Diaries” 15 September). Paget Brewster returning to [CBS’] “Criminal Minds” (21 September)!! [NBC’s] “Law & Order: SVU” has a new team of detectives and a new executive producer (21 September). Leah Remini and Holly Robinson Peete let-go from [CBS’] “The Talk”, ‘guest-host’ replacements may be used to fill their spots until final replacements are determined. Additionally, Ms. Osbourne “will return with a reduced schedule”, meaning she’ll be featured in half as many shows.

EXCLUSIVES By William Keck: [CBS’] “NCIS” will hit the big 200 in 2012; however, though many past faces will be seen – Lauren Holly is “not likely” to return! [CBS’] “Hawaii Five-O” bringing us “ghost stories [...] spooky cemeteries [and] ancient human sacrifices” for Halloween! [AMC’s] “Mad Men” will replace Jared Gilmore (‘Bobby’) who will now be co-starring in [ABC’s] “Once Upon A Time”.

ROUSH REVIEW by Matt Roush: Would like to forget those “few weeks” wherein “Eric Northman pillow-talked [with Sookie]” {– I thought it was creepy, icky. He was much more appealing as a menace.} But, [FX’s] “Rescue Me” and [TNT’s] “The Closer”, along with [AMC’s] “Breaking Bad” are worth remembering! “Falling Skies” on TNT scored where {the NBC original and ABC resurrected} “V” failed. And, ABC-Family’s {FAM’s} “Switched At Birth” was among “[the] best and warmest [and even] compelling” programs of the summer television season.

DINO MIGHT by Megan Lehmann: ^FOX, Going Prehistoric With “Terra Nova”, an ambitious CGI-filled adventure from Steven Spielberg. [...] There’s an earsplitting boom and Stephen Lang [hit] the deck hard as the windows implode. [...] “That’s nothing,” said the buff 59-year-old actor, removing his earplugs and brushing sawdust from his hair. “You wouldn’t believe the stuff that happens around here.” [...] We’re deep in the Australian bush on the set of FOX’s new adventure series, “Terra Nova”. In the scene [being filmed] today, a meteor has just exploded in the atmosphere above the prehistoric colony presided over by ‘Commander Nathaniel Taylor’ (played by Lang). [The exploded meteor has knocked out power to the colony, creating] yet another obstacle for the [future] pilgrims grappling with the past.^

HELLO, ANGELS! by Damien Holbrook: ^Charlie’s girls are back! ABC’s new show, executive produced by Miles Millar and Al Gough, is filming in Miami (FL). Minka Kelly is ‘Eve’, an ex-convict. Annie Ilonzeh is ‘Kate’, a former police officer. Rachael Taylor is ‘Abby’, a disgraced socialite. Ramon Rodriguez will be featured as ‘Bosley’. Robert Wagner was originally hired as ‘Charlie’ but recently backed-out of the role. The show is set to premiere [albeit with a “temporary” ‘Charlie’] 22 September.

FAMILY PREVIEW by Megan Walsh-Boyle: “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” returning [on Cartoon Network] 16 September, featuring “some of the most ambitious battle sequences [ever staged]” – Katee Sackhoff is among those guest-starring this season! Debby Ryan will star in “Jessie”, “a Texas girl who [moved] to New York City to follow her dream [but became] a nanny to four kids.” (Disney Channel, 30 September). Don’t Miss – “Sesame Street” (PBS, 26 September); “Handy Manny” (DIS, 03 October); “Arthur” (PBS, 10 October); “The Secret Circle” ([CWB], 15 September); and, “Terra Nova” (FOX, 26 September).

DAYTIME [DRAMAS] by Michael Logan: Carol Burnett returning to [ABC’s] “All My Children”, 06 September – her fifth appearance as ‘Verla Grubbs’! Meredith Vieira is no longer part of “The Today Show” but she’s continuing her duties with “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire”, returning 26 September.

FAREWELL TO PINE VALLEY? by Michael Logan: ^As “All My Children” is ending it’s run on ABC, Susan Lucci is looking back on her reign as the [greatest star of daytime drama]. [...] Once upon a time {way back in 1970} the execs at “All My Children” were so uncertain about Susan Lucci’s ability to portray Erica Kane, she spent her first few weeks on probation. Would this inexperienced young actress with the ethnic look an big hair be able to compete with the blonde, blue-eyed heroines so popular [at the time]? Would the audience embrace ‘Erica’, a snobby, spoiled, self-adoring teenager with daddy issues [...]?^

HIGHLIGHTING ‘ERICA KANE’ by Michael Logan: ^1970s – Teenaged Erica wed Jeff (Charles Frank) Martin and had the first “legal” abortion on television. 1980s – Menaced by a grizzly, Erica’s shout frightened the beast away. 1990s – Introducing Sarah Michelle Gellar as Erica’s daughter, by rape, Kendall - a lolita who went after her mom’s husband! 2000s – Erica freaked when Bianca (Eden Riegel) was revealed to be homosexual! 2010s – Erica is terrorized by a look-alike and wooed by a Hollywood mogul.^

By Frank Jaymes
from TV Guide Magazine
29 August 2011

08 August 2011

Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes

A terrific rise for the ‘cousins’ of man and a dreadful fall for the species of man.

Driven to cure the illness which often plague the human brain, [Dr.] Will Rodman (James Franco) has developed a pharmaceutical catalyst allowing cerebral pathways to repair and regrow themselves. Alas, [Dr.] Rodman has a personal agenda suppressing rational procedure. A favorable, if improper, human trial is soon followed by a simian trial – with tragic result.

Born from the tragedy, a miracle in the form of a newborn chimpanzee. An orphaned animal, now in the care of [Dr.] Rodman, is much more than a simple ape. This ape can learn, has learned, perhaps better than any human being. But, even this young ape, named Caesar, cannot overcome the man’s innate tendency to be stupid and afraid. Persecuted and imprisoned, Caesar has planned and prepared for the liberation of his species.

The revolution of ape-kind will begin with death but it is not ape-kind who will be responsible for the downfall of human-kind... that blame shall be upon man!

Brilliantly directed and amazingly performed, this film is decently written with [an almost] familiar plot and a [not entirely unexpected] outcome. {Watch the newspaper headlines to determine the association between this ‘Rise’ and [Tim Burton’s] ‘Planet’.} {Fans will be delighted with the homages to the classic ‘Apes’ film series.}

B / PG2

Starring: James Franco; Andy Serkis; John Lithgow; and, Freida Pinto.
Featuring: David Oyelowo; Tom Felton; Karin Konoval; and, David Hewlett.
With: Brian Cox; Richard Ridings; Chris Gordon; and, Jay Caputo.
Plus: Terry Notary; Devyn Dalton; Tyler Labine; and, Jamie Harris.
Writers: Amanda Silver; and, Rick Jaffa.
Director: Rupert Wyatt [w/ Daniel Barrett; and, {a host of effects masters}].

By Frank Jaymes
05 August 2011

26 July 2011

Captain America

When America needed soldiers he was not a man they wanted. But, when they needed a hero, he was the only man for the job!

Steve Rogers, a kid from Brooklyn, small and weak of body, with courage and idealism defying expectation. He dared what few men would dare. A miracle of science gave form to that which lay within him – a soldier, a leader, an avenger – a hero!

{There’s a reason Captain America has been published monthly since 1941 – he’s the man few of us will ever be and the hero most of us would to be.}

World War Two, Adolf Hitler’s chief of advanced science, Johann Schmidt, has an agenda of his own. Schmidt has the desire to rule the world and the intellect to fulfill that dream. Herr Schmidt has vowed to dominate the world or destroy it. And, only Captain America has the power to stop him.

Brilliantly written and directed, with superb performances throughout, this film is exciting and energetic. Set with circa 1904s costumes and features, plus the fantastic advanced machines which stimulate adventure seeking audiences, this is the kind of film from which legends can be born!

{Graphic novel readers will appreciate the inclusion of nearly every creative tenure of this icon for liberty and freedom created by Joe Simon & Jack Kirby.}

A / PG2

Starring: Chris Evans; Hugo Weaving; Tommy Lee Jones; and, Hayley Atwell
Featuring: Sebastian Stan; Toby Jones; Dominic Cooper; and, Neal McDonough
With: Derek Luke; Kenneth Choi; JJ Field; and, Bruno Ricci
Plus: Stanley Tucci and Samuel L. Jackson
Writers: Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely
Director: Joe Johnston

By Frank Jaymes