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Michael Nyqvist

Sub Movie ‘Hunter Killer’ is Absurd and Entertaining

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – The United States military as superheroes has never gotten a better workout than in “Hunter Killer,” the title that sounds like a Halloween-themed movie, but it’s a style of submarine that seeks to adjust our geo-political balance. Gerard Butler is the commander hoping to prevent World War 3.

Keanu Reeves in Ludicrous Premise as ‘John Wick’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.0/5.0
Rating: 2.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Keanu Reeves has been in a lot of dogs over the years, but rarely has he left such a high body count while avenging one of them. “John Wick” is a brutal revenge thriller where Reeves is a ex-mob enforcer who goes on a murderous rampage leaving blood on every doorstep to avenge the death of his dog. Despite that chuckle-inducing premise, “John Wick” isn’t the dog I expected, but then again that’s not saying much.

Effective ‘Europa Report’ Mixes Science with Fiction

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Unlike a lot of so-called science fiction (“Sharknado” comes to mind), “Europa Report” actually relies heavily on true science. There really is a school of thought, as explained by the great Neil Degrasse Tyson in archival footage used in the film, that the icy surface of Europa, one of the moons of Jupiter, may hold the most remarkable discovery in the history of mankind – that we are not alone.

‘Mission: Impossible: Ghost Protocol’ Rocks Your Holiday

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.0/5.0
Rating: 4.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Brad Bird proves that he can make the leap from Pixar to action with one of the best genre films of the year, the adrenalized “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol.” Proving there is a way to make a big budget franchise installment that feels vibrant, alive, and like more than just a pathetic retread of what has come before (unlike this year’s “Pirates of the Caribbean” and “Sherlock Holmes” entries), “Ghost Protocol” delivers with breakneck pace and stellar action choreography. This movie wastes little time – it’s a lean, mean, action machine.

Taylor Lautner Stars in Silly, Ineffective ‘Abduction’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 1.5/5.0
Rating: 1.5/5.0

CHICAGO – After the success of “The Twilight Saga: New Moon” and “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse,” Taylor Lautner could have taken any number of paths to breakout with his own star vehicle. He chose to try and fashion himself into an action star, appearing in this weekend’s “Abduction” as a young man discovering he has a very special past. He gets to find love, kick some ass, and even kill some bad guys. And all of it is very, very silly.

‘The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest’ Underlines Franchise Limitations

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.0/5.0
Rating: 3.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Now that the third and final installment of Stieg Larsson’s posthumously published, phenomenally popular book series has been turned into a feature film, the questions emerges: ‘Was it worth it?’ To the worldwide box office and the creatively bankrupt Hollywood, of course it was. But were moviegoers truly satisfied by the experience?

‘The Girl Who Played With Fire’ Snuffs Out Potential

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.5/5.0
Rating: 2.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Movie trilogies often are judged on the strength of their middle chapters. The “Star Wars” franchise wouldn’t have been continually embraced by new generations if “The Empire Strikes Back” hadn’t deepened the characters to such an extent that they became more than mere Jungian archetypes. If “Empire” jettisoned the franchise’s potential, “Attack of the Clones” brought it in for a crash landing.

‘The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ Entertains Rather Than Exhilarates

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Literary mysteries are harder to adapt for the big screen than one might assume. The trick is to make audiences feel like they’re discovering secrets right alongside the characters. We want to share in their exhilaration, their terror, their epiphanies.

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