February 14, 2012
Review - " 10 Best Romances of the last 12 Months "
By Roland Hansen
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I love a good love story. Last year for Valentines day I did a compilation review of the 50
greatest romance movies of the last decade. This year I'm going to go with the top ten
love stories of the past twelve months. For it to qualify I had to have first seen the film
between February 2011 and January 2012. I must admit I actually had a difficult time
coming up with ten romances i felt were worthy. Must have been a bad year for love.
The Adjustment Bureau March 2011
"All I have are the choices I make, and I choose her, come
Do we control our destiny, or do unseen forces manipulate
us? Matt Damon stars in the thriller The Adjustment Bureau
as a man who glimpses the future 'Fate' has planned for him
and realizes hewants something else. To get it, he must
pursue the only woman he's ever loved across, under and
through the streets of modern-day New York. With the strong
on scene chemistry provided between Damon and Blunt,
both male and female moviegoers will leave the theater
knowing that the heart wants what it wants and no seen and
unseen forces can destroy that need. The Adjustment
Bureau is a well-paced, well-balanced, and artful sci-fi thriller
that doesn't feel the need to lob fistfights or car chases at
you in order to entertain.
Just Go With it Feb 2011
"He's great, he's the greatest guy, and I might even be in
love with him, but it really doesn't matter at this moment
because he is getting married to another person, right now."
A plastic surgeon named Danny (Adam Sandler) meets
women in bars while pretending to be an unhappily married
man. He even sports a fake wedding ring. The women then
bring him home for a night of casual sex. Of course he finally
falls for one of his conquests and now must come up with a
fake family to keep the ruse going. Danny talks his assistant
Katherine (Jennifer Aniston) into pretending to be his wife.
Things get even more complicated when Katherine lets it slip
that she has two children, which of course would lead Palmer
to believe they are also Danny's kids. Just Go with It is as
predictable as you would expect. Though, thanks to a few fun
Gnomeo & Juliet Feb 2011
"I mean what's in a gnome? Because you are blue, my father
sees red, and because I am red, I am feeling blue. "
Toy Story meets Shakespeare. blue-hatted Gnomeo and
red-hatted Juliet falling hard for each other after he spies her
wearing full-on ninja garb while she's on an illicitexpedition to
secure a beautiful flower for her garden. They must keep
their love secret from their respective clans, who have
suspicions and long-standing misconceptions abouteach
other and work out their aggression via lawnmower races in a
nearby alley. The funny and clever script has multiple
references to popular movies. This animated tale was a blast,
and it mixed in some jokes that children wouldn't get. Of
moments, it's better than expected as well. Aniston & Sandler have good chemistry and Kidman loosened up a bit and had
some fun with the role. It's got great laughs, a family core, and to be honest it was downright welcome to see since its based in
Hawaii and we East Coasters are snow and blizzard weary. Just Go With It is actuallypretty good if you're willingto just go with it.
course, there are plenty of fun Shakespeare references (a passing truck bears the company name "Tempest Teapots"; - the
address of the neighboring houses are 2B and Not 2B) and an appearance by the Bard himself, courtesy of a Patrick
Stewart-voiced park statue that insists the tale we're watching will be better if everyone dies in the end. This fair tale forgoes
the original story's gruesome ending in favor of a few tearful moments mixed in with fast action and lots of comedy. There's
plenty of action, and it's all wrappedup in a retro soundtrack of Elton John'sgreatest hits. It turns out that I had a lot of fun
watching "Gnomeo and Juliet." As Shakespeare himself might say, all's wellthat ends well.
Tamara Drewe Feb 2011
"Why does the asshole always get the girl? "
Tamara Drewe was such a saucy little minx growing up in her
idyllic village in the English countryside – even before a nose
job that would embolden her further – that years after her
departure, men of various backgrounds and generations still
feel a tingle at the very thought of her. When Tamara returns
to her former home in the super-quaint village of Ewedown in
the English countryside, bored schoolgirls, best-selling
authors, a hot ex and some visiting would-be writers are
soon all in thrall to the denim shorts-wearing beauty who's
desperately trying to offload the rambling cottage of her
childhood.With neighbours spying on each other via
binoculars across their green fields, clandestine meetings in
shaded woodland copses and love-fuelled mercy dashes through sleepy English villages, one of the real stars of the movie
is of course the beautiful English countryside - only to be expected really
Friends with Benefits July 2011
"One day you'll meet someone and it'll literally take your
breath away. Like you can't breathe. Like no oxygen to the
Dylan (Justin Timberlake) is dumped by Kayla (Emma Stone)
while Jamie (Mila Kunis) gets the bad news from Quincy (Andy
Samberg) at the beginning of "Friends with Benefits";. In
discussing their mutual and similar situations, the two friends,
Dylan and Jamie, decide that things would be so much easier
and less complicated if they could just get it on with each
other rather than having the complication of a relationship.
Thus, they become friends with benefits. You can be pretty
sure that Dylan and Jamie discover that there are as many complications being friends with benefits as there are being in a
relationship,yet it's truly magical to see their love blossom. Their friends first approach really demonstrates the importance of
getting to know a person and this movie is a lesson for us all, one that I imagine will be taught for years to come.
Crazy, Stupid, Love July 2011
"I will never stop trying. Because when you find the one... you
never give up."
Cal Weavers been married to his high school sweetheart,
Emily, for twenty-five years and they've hit a rough patch.
One day as they're driving home, Emily announces that she's
slept with somebody and Cal jumps out of the moving car,
unable to take it anymore. That's how numb Cal is. He can't
feel anything anymore. Emily asks for a divorce and suddenly
Cal is thrown from married life into the dating scene with no
idea what to do because he hasn't dated in twenty-five years.
Cal hangs out at a bar where hunky player, Jacob Palmer,
woos the ladies and Cal talks to him one day and suddenly Cal is Jacob's wingman and Jacob is teaching him all about what's
out there for him, how to act, how to dress, and generally how to be more attractive to women. What's fantastic about this
movie is how it distinguishes between the kind of "love" Jacob practices and the kind of love Cal knows in his
heart. It even explores infatuation, which is what happens with Cal's 13-year-old son, Robbie, who falls for his 17-year-old
babysitter, Jessica. Even as Cal seduces Kate, he finds himself pining for what he had. The story is further complicated when
Jacob meets Hannah, who doesn't buy in to all his games. "Crazy Stupid Love" is one of those rare movies that combines
great comedy with incisive, real-life analysis. It's crazy, stupid good.
One Day Aug 2011
"She made you decent, and in return you made her so
happy, so happy, and I will always be grateful to you for that."
One Day is a love story about two apparent opposites who,
more on less, fall in love at first sight when they spend the
night together after graduating from Edinburgh University on
July 15, 1988. But while these characters are very aware of
their feelings, they're not ready to be together the moment
they fall for each other. It takes nearly two decades of
dropping in on the couple on the anniversary of their
inaugural interaction for them to finally make a move towards
something more than friendship. You think that people would
have had enough of silly love movies? You would have
thought wrong (Paul McCartney knows this!). "One Day" is
just the right kind of weepy romance to round out the
summer. The film is subtle and memorable, weightier than the typically sexually charged romance and more original than a
run-of-the-mill tearjerker. "One Day" is worth one of yours.
Twilight: Breaking Dawn part 1 Nov 2011
"No measure of time with you will be long enough. But we'll
start with forever."
Even though it's the next to last movie in what will be a five
part saga, the story could almost function as a stand alone
horror film. As the movie opens, human teen Bella (Kristen
Stewart) is preparing to marry vampire Edward (Robert
Pattinson).Now they get to do the typical wedding stuff. The
Vampire bachelor party; no strippers, just a little hunting. The
nervous bride to be having strange second thoughts and
bloody nightmares. The best man who is actually the best
wolf, Jacob, fearful about Bella wanting to spend her
honeymoon as a human. The danger: Edward could
accidentally kill her in a fit of passion. The nice thing about
this first half of Breaking Dawn-- the second installment of
the saga is coming next year-- is that the story is relatively
compact. No Volturi over in Italy, no evil vampires, just the
same central characters we've come to know, dealing first with Edward and Bella's wedding and then her pregnancy with the
half-vampire, half-human baby that grows so quickly it threatens her life. Strangely, Bella winds up isolated from almost
everyone amid this - Edward at first avoids having sex with her for fear of hurting her, then during her pregnancy remains
strangely distant, even when she appears to need him most. For his part Jacob, always pushy and overbearing around Bella,
lurks around practically biting his tongue to avoid crowing "I told you this was a terrible idea!"
Breaking Dawn is a film for the Twilight Faithful whether they be wolf pack, vampire clan, or the odd stray human. Suffice it to
say that if you've enjoyed the books and the films so far, this is one you'll want to see.
New Years Eve Dec 2011
"Sometimes it feels like there are so many things in this world
we can't control. Earthquakes, floods, reality shows... But it's
important to remember the things that we can. Like
forgiveness, second chances, fresh starts... Because the one
thing that turns the world from the longing place to a beautiful
place... is love. Love and any of its forms. Love gives us
hope... Hope for the New Year. That's what New Year's Eve is
to me. "
Tells the story of several different characters, centered
around New Year's Eve 2011 in New York City. The highlight
of the movie, for me, was Zac Efron and Michelle Pfeiffer, as
the enthusiastic young 20-something (who wants to get the
tickets for the hottest party in town) and the 40 or
50-something woman who has an epiphany (or breaks down,
depending on how you look at it) and makes a deal to give him the tickets he is looking for in exchange for helping her cross
off items on her bucket list. Ashton Kutcher, who hates everything about New Year's Eve, get's stuck in an elevator with Lea
Michele, who is missing the most important engagement of her career. Josh Duhamel looking to reconnect with a woman he
met just once .... one year ago.The rest of the stories are all very standard chick-flick-kind-of-plots, which means they are
nothing that you would be surprised by, but all of them trying to make you cry, especially Halle Berry's overseas husband.
The only plot line that I think could easily make viewers misty was Robert De Niro's sad tale of a dying man who just wants to
make it to midnight. There are tears, laughter,love, hope, forgiveness, second chances and fresh starts, enough to make
you look forward to your own kind of New Year (Eve) and be inspired to do something extraordinary.
One For the Money - Jan 2012
"I was shooting a gun. How hot is that? I'm gonna nail Morelli.
Not 'nail' Morelli! You know what I mean..."
When you mix gorgeous and clueless you get Stephanie
Plum, the broke and determined woman with a new job as a
rookie bounty hunter. The Jersey girl Plum goes after wanted
local cop, Joe Morelli, who also happens to be her old high
school heartthrob. Morelli is played by Jason O'Mara. Heigl
and O'Mara complement each other well, throwing quirky
dialog at each other and making the movie humorous. While
there were some bright moments, it was not particularly
unique. It was quite entertaining and blissfully impractical. An
action comedy takes the plot of the recent Jennifer Aniston /
Gerard Butler vehicle The Bounty Hunter, and reverses the
roles. Now granted, One For The Money is not really a
particularly good movie but I enjoyed it much more than
Bounty Hunter. "One for the Money", though by no means amazing, was a pleasant surprise.