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My box office roundup

January 23, 2013 - Pam Rodgers

Since the turn of the New Year, I have had the opportunity to hit the movie theater to catch up on some 2012 releases and take in a 2013 release as well. The end of the year is such a crazy time. It seems once you reach Thanksgiving it’s a never ending sprint until New Year’s. At least that’s what it feels like to me.

So many good movies come out at the end of the year and with my usually busy schedule it’s hard to get to the films I want to see. In the past, January is the time to catch up on films I missed that are still playing. This year is no different.

So far this year I have seen (in order that I saw them) are “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey,” “Les Misérables,” “Lincoln,” “Silver Linings Playbook” and “Gangster Squad.” (I might have gone to a few more but the lack of my own car puts a wrench in certain plans.) The movies are all very different so I can’t really compare them. I can honestly say I enjoyed all of them, some more than others.

I didn’t want to blog about each movie, so I will highlight my thoughts about each of them. Although a week or so I wrote a blog entirely on “Les Misérables” so I think it’s safe to exclude that movie from this blog. There won’t be any spoilers, just a few personal thoughts about each movie.

And, Action!

• The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

I loved the Lord of the Rings trilogy. All three movies were excellent entertainment. So when I heard Peter Jackson was going to do the prequel story “The Hobbit” it seemed like an inevitable project. While I love to read, I haven’t read these books. Therefore I couldn’t pick out what they kept in, what was left out or what was added to stretch the small book into three movies.

The “Hobbit” was a good movie, but not as good as LOTR, in my opinion. The story did feel a bit stretched but there wasn’t anything that I truly hated about the movie. As with the “Fellowship of the Ring,” the main goal of the movie was not accomplished, and I didn’t expect it to be. I look forward to the story continuing in December. It is always nice to visit Middle Earth at the cinema.

• Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln is my favorite president. He faced the toughest job any United States leader ever has, the Civil War. He accomplished so much during his presidency. It is such a tragedy that he never got the chance to lead us beyond the end of the war and slavery. The movie centers on the passing of 13th Amendment towards the end of the war. It was fascinating time to focus on and one that doesn’t always get a lot of attention.

Daniel Day-Lewis is God’s gift to the acting world. He was so in character that I never doubted I was watching Abe on the big screen. The film was the caliber you expect from a Spielberg film. Because of that, I found myself crying at the end, even though I was well aware of what was going to happen. The movie should make any American proud of our heritage and of how far we have come since that time.

• Silver Linings Playbook

I’ll be honest, what first drew me to this movie was that Jennifer Lawrence is in it. Since she has taken on the role of Katniss in “The Hunger Games,” I have been interested in her work. But as I read up about the movie and saw who else was in the movie, I wanted to see it in it’s own right.

I love romantic comedies and even though this is an off-beat romcom, it still fit the bill. As I said, I had read about the movie before going to see it so I had general idea of what the plot would entail. But honestly, I still didn’t know what to expect. Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence both play quirky characters ... OK they are down right crazy, but that works for them. They both sell it completely, and I am so happy they both are nominated for their work.

• Gangster Squad

Ah, my lone 2013 release of the group. This was also a movie I was drawn too because of the cast. I love Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. They were fantastic together in “Crazy, Stupid, Love.” so I had to see them reunite in “Gangster Squad.” While I enjoyed the movie, it’s honestly my least favorite of this particular group.

It was about what I expected — corrupt mafia guys, cowboy-esqe cops, lots of guns, fights, drugs and death. At the top of the movie we get to see a man pulled apart by two cars. That’s a great way to suck the audience in ... OK depends on the person. “Gangster Squad” was cinema violence at it’s best or worst whatever side you take on the matter.

And, Cut!

Well that has been cinematic journey so far in 2013. This year seems to have some great entertainment slated throughout the year. I, for one, am really, really looking forward this November. (YAY for Catching Fire!!) But I'm sure there will be lots of good ones in between.



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The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey