365 Movies By Day Reviews of Movies I Watch that I Feel Like Writing About


Deepwater Horizon (2016)

If you're going to make a big-budget disaster movie, it might as well be based on a true story. Personally, I'm so over the huge blockbuster disaster movies like The Day After Tomorrow, Poseidon, Independence Day, The Core, Volcano, Into the Storm, Armageddon (which I actually really like), San Andreas (which I also kind of liked), Dante's Peak...the list goes on and on. The point of these movies, and so many others, is to make a big buck. Forget about the plausibility, most of these movies are utterly ridiculous. The hero(es) always overcome the most extreme circumstances and, often, end up saving the world in the end. Now while the 2010 disaster which caused the worst offshore oil spill in United States history and made British Petroleum (BP) the most villainous company on the face of the planet at the time, the story of Deepwater Horizon does take some liberties along the way. While the unfortunate events on that night of April 10th certainly did happen, the events on that rig felt very much like James Cameron's Titanic after the ship hits the iceberg. 


Captain America: Civil War (2016)

Captain America: Civil War is perhaps the greatest superhero movie that has not been directed by Christopher Nolan. My two favorite superhero movies (The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises) both belong to him. At of this post, my third favorite would probably be a toss up between Batman Begins, Iron Man, and Captain America: Civil War. There are others (such as The Amazing Spider-Man, Iron Man 2, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, etc.) that are up there, but there is clearly a distinction between the top 3 or 4 and all of the others. It is my hope that superhero movies continue to get better, but unfortunately, it feels like for every good one we get, we get 3-4 bad ones. So when we get a movie like Captain America: Civil War, it's important to take pause, see it, praise it, and encourage more movies like it because we know that poor movies will continue to be made because all of them seem to easily gross over $100 million. And the reason they day is our fault. We continue to see these terrible movies. But that is a different story for a different day.


A Walk in the Woods (2015)

A Walk in the Woods, the 2015 comedy-drama that I thought would be a throwaway movie that I originally only watched so that I could add it to my list, turned out to be one of the biggest surprises of the year. Now, don't get me wrong. I'd be a fool to think that a year from now that I'd remember anything from this movie or that I'll ever watch this movie again. But for two hours on a Tuesday night in the middle of April, it was a very refreshing escape from reality and a movie had me grinning from ear to ear from the first scene until the last. Also, if Robert Redford (The Horse Whisperer, All is Lost) or Nick Nolte (The Prince of Tides, Warrior) called it a career today and this was either of their last movies, I think that would be okay. Each has had a solid career. While not his number one fan, I find it absolutely criminal that Redford has only been nominated for one Oscar for acting in his entire career (way back in 1974 for The Sting). Nolte has had more success as an actor in terms of awards (three Oscar nominations). And while these two actors are household names who each has more than a dozen movies that you could rattle off the top of your heads, their careers have followed very different careers. Nolte's career has been marred by controversies in his personal life whereas Redford as sort of been the poster boy of how an A-list actor can live his life while staying out of the tabloids. The two don't seem like much of a match for a movie like this so late in their careers. But the movie worked perfectly for each man. You'll leave your viewing knowing that each gave an admirable performance even though it's light-hearted and certainly not one of their most memorable ones.


Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

In a day and age where it seems like a new superhero movie is getting released every other week, it is hard for an average mainstream moviegoer to know which ones are worth watching, which ones should be skipped, and what order should you watch these movies in. This seems to be of particular importance with the Marvel movies and of even more importance with The Avenger movies. I have done my best to see The Avenger movies as they've been released, but there have been some that I have found to be absolutely terribly along the way including Thor: The Dark World and Avengers: Age of Ultron. It certainly has not helped that Marvel characters who aren't Avengers (like Spider-Man) are starting to show up in movies featuring The Avengers. It's only a matter of time before all of these other Marvel characters (Ant-Man, Deadpool, etc.) start appearing in each newly released movie. At that time, it just might be time to give up. Don't even get me started about the future when either Marvel or DC buys the other out and we get characters like Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, Iron-Man, Thor, Captain America, Flash, Wonder Woman, The Green Lantern, Hulk, etc. all end up in the same movie. It won't occur for awhile, but when this market becomes stale many, many years from now, there will be too much money sitting on the table to not do it. The purists will be upset as well those who write the comics (though they most likely already are), but, if I've learned anything, it's that money speaks.


San Andreas (2015)

Not being a guy who is really into the disaster film genre anymore (I turned off movies like The Day After Tomorrow and 2012 before I was even a third of the way in), I was more than tentative to give San Andreas a chance. It's a genre that once held great interest to me in my younger days. I enjoyed movies like Independence Day, Deep Impact, Cloverfield while absolutely loving Titanic (my favorite movie of 1997), The Impossible (my favorite movie of 1992), World War Z (my second favorite movie of 2013), I Am Legend (my second favorite movie of 2007), War of the Worlds, The Perfect Storm and, shamefully, Armageddon. But for every success like Deep Impact or Poseidon, there seem to be films like Twister or The Core that sets the disaster genre back. So, honestly, when I see a preview for a new disaster movie, my first instinct is to believe that it is going to be absolutely terrible. If it's got somewhat of a science-fiction element (like World War Z) or if it is based on a true story (The Impossible) AND it does well with the critics, it gets more of a benefit of a doubt. If it has neither of those things, it most likely will not. I thought the latter when I saw the first series of trailers for director Brad Peyton (Journey 2: The Mysterious Island) San Andreas.