Homefront movie
7.25 out of 10
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire movie
8.75 out of 10
Disney's Frozen movie
10.0 out of 10
Delivery Man movie
6.75 out of 10
8.25 out of 10

Monday, August 2, 2010

Charlie St. Cloud

Choppy Seas
[Zac Efron, Charlie Tahan, Amanda Crew, Donal Logue]

image from www.nola.com

RANT: A second movie on the weekend and a second chance to get to the theater on time. And a second time where I made it to a seat during the middle of the first trailer. I really need to get up earlier in the morning to get my errands done and to the movies in time. At least I received a coupon for a FREE small popcorn using my Regal Theater rewards card.

SYNOPSIS: Small town sailboat racing champion, Charlie St. Cloud, is overcome with grief when his younger brother is killed by a drunk driver while Charlie was behind the wheel. Giving up his scholarship to college for a job in a local cemetery, Charlie's promise and bond with his dead brother allows him to keep seeing him every day at dusk for a hour.

As Zac Efron tries to shed his "High School Musical" image, he has come under fire by the critics for his lack of talent, or for needing to go back to movies where he can sing and dance. Hearing about how his looks will only take him so far. Zac returns to the screen to follow up "17 Again" with the Ben Sherwood adaptation of "The Death of Life of Charlie St. Cloud".

Part "The Sixth Sense", part "The Lovely Bones", director Burr Steers re-teams with Zac Efron for a more serious spin. Zac is Charlie, a yachtsman with opportunities and prospects beyond the small shores of his hometown. When a drunk driver crashes into Charlie's car, killing his younger brother Sam, Charlie retreats from his life. Instead of pursuing a scholarship, Charlie settles for a job at the local cemetery. Even though his spirit for living is gone, he spends every day of the next 5 years meeting the ghost of his dead brother, keeping a promise on their last living day together that they would meet at dusk for one hour to practice baseball. Both once an high school acquaintance, Tess Carroll, return with goals to solo yacht around the world, it threatens Charlie's relationship with Sam and threatens to spark a want for living within Charlie.

Zac, Charlie Tahan who plays Sam, and Amanda Crew as Tess Carroll, all put in decent performances. Even Kim Basinger and Ray Liotta spend a day or two on site putting in work. Efron shows that he is expanding his acting range, but that range will be overshadowed by his looks and current movie cred for a little time more. But in this performance I saw a potential that will eventual outshine what has come before. Even George Clooney paid his dues on "The Facts of Life".

The story itself has a cool feel and a couple of twists and turns along the way. The third act is a little weaker than I would have liked, but its holds together long enough to get the job done. The story may have choppy and stormy seas, but there are moments of calm.

Worth: Matinee or Netflix

I am also trying out a new rating system shown below based on reader reaction to my somewhat complex monetary rating scale. I will give both ratings and see what kind of reaction I muster. A movie can receive up to 5 popcorn buckets. Why popcorn buckets? Because I am a slave to the thousand + calorie delight! Enjoy!

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