The Hunger Games: Mockingjay- Part 2 Passes

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As the war of Panem escalates to the destruction of other districts by the Capitol, Katniss Everdeen, the reluctant leader of the rebellion, must bring together an army against President Snow, while all she holds dear hangs in the balance.

Below please find more information about the screening:

THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY – PART 2 (PG-13)
Tuesday, November 17th
@ 7:30PM
AMC Waterfront 22

Please comment below with your favorite moment from The Hunger Games movie series.  Admittedly, I have never experienced The Hunger Games book or movie. First time for everything…right?

Much Love,

Movie Scene Queen

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Out of the Furnace

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While the holiday season is typically filled with family-friendly movies about Christmas and miracles, Relativity Media took an entirely different route with Scott Cooper’s Out of the Furnace. “It’s not an uplifting holiday movie but it wasn’t meant to be,” said Braddock Mayor John Fetterman, 44.

Produced by Ridley Scott and Leonardo DiCaprio, Out of the Furnace brings life to the Braddock, Pennsylvania area.

Set in the Pittsburgh suburb, steel mill worker Russell Blaze (Bale) is hit with several personal and domestic setbacks. Russell’s ailing father is on the brink of death and his younger brother, Rodney (Affleck) suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder after serving a tour in Afghanistan. Rodney gets caught up with an illegal ring of bare-knuckles fighting led by rough neck Harlan DeGroat (Harrelson).

Out of the Furnace was Taken (2009) without the fancy trimmings of technology and supreme martial arts skills. Christian Bale’s character takes matters into his own hands to preserve and avenge his depleting family. The movie is authentic and genuine, capitalizing on the life struggles of blue collar working people.

Fetterman said Out of the Furnace is “incredibly powerful and beautifully acted, particularly Casey Affleck. I thought he did an amazing job.”

Woody Harrelson also provides a stellar performance as a tough New Jersey underground fighting ring leader. Nothing like the clean-urban, hip look in White Man Can’t Jump (1992), Harrelson’s character dominates a drug filled, careless life attitude. He masters the role from beginning to end.

Many locals, including my son, Zaire, took on small, extra roles to contribute to the hometown feeling while maximizing on what’s left of the steel mill industry. In the movie, Braddock Avenue, which is Braddock’s Main Street, looks great. As the street runs through the entire city, the movie displays Braddock Avenue as the Mecca, or meeting place, for all Braddock residents.

Similar to Detroit and the automobile industry, Mayor Fetterman sees the “economic set back” due to the de-industrialization process with the area’s steel mills as a relevant topic within the movie. Out of the Furnace makes several references to the dying steel mill industry in Braddock, more specifically, the limited job resources if the steel mills completely shut down and outsource. Fetterman refers to the famous saying about the economically strapped cites, “the rich get socialism and the poor gets capitalism.”

Despite Braddock’s economic drought, abandoned buildings and population decline since the 1920s, its residents, community leaders, politicians, including Mayor Fetterman are rejoicing at the national exposure from the movie.

3.5 STARS: Most of my biased excitement merely sat on the foundation of seeing my only son on the big screen. But, Out of the Furnace, has a semi-gruesome tale of one man’s journey for societal redemption and family-invoked revenge. Ultimately, the movie’s uncovering of Braddock further helps the revitalization efforts to restore the historical city limits of 15104.

Zaire & Zoe
My son, Zaire, on set of Out of the Furnace with Zoe Saldana

Now You See Me (5.24.13)

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Now You See Me was surprisingly refreshing and filled with suspense, action, and occasional laughter. The movie follows four lonely illusionists as they live out a dead magician’s son’s vendetta.

FBI agent Dylan Rhodes (Mark Ruffalo) joins forces with Interpol Detective Alma Vargas (Mélanie Laurent) to prove that a team of Las Vegas magicians, the Four Horsemen, were responsible for robbing a Paris bank and rewarding their audience with the $3 million. The Four Horsemen consists of as J. Daniel Atlas (Jesse Eisenberg), The Know-It-All, who amazed New York City crowds with his elaborate card tricks, Isla Fisher as Henley Reeves (Isla Fisher), The Beauty, who captivated her audience with tricks and good looks, Jack Wilder (Dave Franco), The Rookie, who seems like he was greater at breaking and entering rather than simple magic tricks, and finally, Merritt Osbourne (Woody Harrelson), The Mentalist, who before joining the group was conning married couples out of their vacation money.

White Men Can’t Jump
Woody Harrelson, who is most known in the Black community as the b-baller from the 1992 classic White Men Can’t Jump, was absolutely charismatic and loveable in Now You See Me. He’s clearly aged but he’s aged well. In the movie, Harrelson played the brazen, arrogant psychic, knowing your every thought and desire. But, like most spiritualists and predictors, he was just very good at guessing and sensing the obvious.

Harrelson definitely get puts on the “You’re So Ugly, You’re Kinda Cute” List!

Another pleasant, handsome surprise was rapper and actor Common, who played FBI Supervisor Evans. Common only popped up in a few scenes but it was definitely worth it! He’s so posed and regal that it’s hard not to notice him. I still haven’t come to a solid conclusion whether his talents are more superior as an actor or a rapper. But, if Nelly, Ludacris, and TI can do, I say more power to Mr. Common!

My favorite AARP card holder, Morgan Freeman (197 years old), graced us with this presence. Mr. Freeman has yet to let me down in his cinematic roles. In Now You See Me, he’s a key player. His character, Thaddeus Bradley, exposes the tricks to everyone’s act. Money quickly becomes his motivator as he shifts gears mid-way through the movie. Of course, this isn’t a spoiler review so please check out Now You See Me, which “magically” hits theatres on May 31st!

3.75 STARS: Besides the ending, which happened to be a little cliché, the movie was great!