Up first this week is Plane. I’m a sucker for a Gerard Butler action flick and this also co-stars Mike Colter who played Luke Cage in the Marvel Netflix shows. Is it anything we haven’t seen before? No, of course not, but it’s very watchable. Butler could do this type of role in his sleep, but I had fun with it. It’s far from groundbreaking, but as a fan of the “Has Fallen” series I recommend it to those who enjoy those. Butler plays a pilot with Colter as a prisoner being transported. The plane has other passengers, but isn’t full. It crashes and those who survived the crash must now survive bad guys where they crashed. The biggest flaw with the film is that it takes too long to get to the action. It gives a ton of backstory and in a film like this I simply don’t care about anyone’s background. Give me the action. When it gets to the action it’s very good especially the scene with the .50 cal. Although both actors are allegedly veterans and yet neither really did a good job with their gun work. The recovery team is full of kick-butt military types who clearly outshine the leads in terms of gun work. The average person won’t notice the issues I do, but it’s something that bothered me. Other than that it’s an overall entertaining film. It should have more action, but the third act does save it.
Sticking with action, Code of the Assassins is the latest Asian period action flick to come my way. The action is good with great fight sequences and weaponry, but I really didn’t care about the plot. There are way too many people in it with lots of double crosses and who is who. It should be about the lead actor who is trying to recover a copper map that got his family killed, but there are different factions and multiple levels of assassins and other hired killers. I did like the fighting and costuming though. It does rely on CGI, but the actual hand-to-hand fighting is solid. The period costuming and set design are top-notch. If you like these types of movies it is good for a watch, but I can’t see myself coming back to it. It doesn’t separate itself from other films in the Asian fantasy/period/action genre.
Third we have Sissy. It was not what I was expecting and goes dark pretty quickly which is great in my book. It’s an Australian film (I believe) that sees two young girls who are best friends that grow apart, but run into each other as adults. Sissy is a social media influencer and gets invited to her former friend’s get together. Her former friend is getting married, but it turns out the place they are staying at is owned by another girl who Sissy had problems with as a kid. You soon learn there are issues with Sissy and the bodies start dropping. It has great practical effects which I loved. I also thought the lead actress playing Sissy was really good. You aren’t quite sure if there was something wrong with her or if she was just bullied as a kid, but then it goes off the rails and is a fun watch. I liked the ending as well. For a film I knew zero about, it was a nice surprise.
The next releases come from Mill Creek Entertainment. I’m a huge fan of stand up comedy and Mike Birbiglia and Jim Gaffigan are two of the biggest names in the game. I’ve seen Birbiglia live and both stand ups have great deliveries on their stories/jokes. Mill Creek put together two DVD sets of two of their biggest shows. With Birbiglia you get My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend and What I Should Have Said Was Nothing. With Gaffigan you get Noble Ape and Quality Time. Birbiglia talks about life, first love, traveling and everything in between. Gaffigan talks about food, family, being overweight and everything in between. I’ve seen all 4 routines before, but genuinely laughed out loud again rewatching them. I could honestly watch these 4 bits over and over again because both Birbiglia and Gaffigan are two of my favorites. If you only know them as actors I highly recommend picking up these stand up specials. It will be something I revisit often and I hope Mill Creek does more of these stand up releases because I would collect them all. Highly, highly recommended.