Tagged: Bryan Callen

 

Summary: A twe;ve-year-old boy finds a way to communicate with his dog. While the Government hunts him down for his technology he decides to use his dog’s simple thoughts to help repair the relationship between his parents.

Year: 2020

Australian Cinema Release Date: TBA

Thailand Cinema Release Date: TBA

Australian VOD Release Date: 9th July 2020

Country: UK, China, USA

Director: Gil Junger

Screenwriter: Gil Junger

Cast: Dillon Ahlf (Brayden), Gralen Bryant Banks (Principal Harris), Gabriel Bateman (Oliver), Sean Boyd (Hunter), Bryan Callen (Agent Callen), Lena Clark (Mrs. McClelland), Josh Duhamel (Lukas), Jason Edwards (Mr. McClelland), Megan Fox (Ellen), Lara Grice (Ms. Shackley), Mason Guccione (Rodney), Neo Hooo (Xiao), Madison Horcher (Sophie), Billy 4 Johnson (Nicholas), Julia Jones (Agent Munoz), Will Junger (Will), Zoe Lazar (Debbie), Youngjian Lin (Shen), Janet Montgomery (Bridget), Kunal Nayyar (Mr. Mills), Marnette Patterson (Cindy), David Rayden (Rockford), Jannette Sepwa (Jason), Todd Stashwick (Henry (voice)), Izaac Wang (Li)

Running Time: 91 mins

Classification: PG (Australia)

 

 

OUR THINK LIKE A DOG REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

Dave Griffiths’ Think Like A Dog Review:

For a long time family films were a dull, boring affair that seemed at times to not even work for kids. Sure you had those that marked a generation like Frozen but few were entertaining or mature enough to provide any entertainment for the adults that were forced to watch them with their kids. The 2020 cinematic year seems to have bucked that trend though with films like Spies In Disguise, Sonic The Hedgehog and My Spy offering something for kids and adults alike. Now we can add another film to that list – Think Like A Dog.

To be honest we should have expected the film to have a certain winning formula. After all it is written and directed by Gil Junger, a man who may not be a house-hold name but has worked on some of television’s most popular comedies over the years including Dharma & Greg and Ellen. Then there is the fact that the film stars Hollywood A-Listers Josh Duhamel (Safe Haven) and Meagan Fox (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) star in the film – gone are the days when star’s managers let them make mistakes like The Pacifier. Through in child actor Gabriel Bateman who did amazing things in Child’s Play and Lights Out and you can certainly see why this film should work. The best thing is it does.

Bateman plays Oliver a twelve-year-old prodigy whose science experiments stun those around him. At school he is excelling, while of course trying to attract the attention of his class-mate Sophie (Madison Horcher – Adventures In Babysitting), but he is not so smooth when it comes to inter-acting with the opposite sex. He also faces stresses with his home life as it becomes more and more obvious that his Mum (Fox) and Dad (Duhamel) are heading for divorce.

But then his latest experiment doesn’t go the way he planned and he finds himself being able to communicate with his dog. Together the duo come up with a way to help try and keep Oliver’s parents together but they soon find themselves in trouble when a tech-billionaire known as Mr Mills (Kunal Nayyar – The Big Bang Theory) wants the technology for himself and they inevitably attract the attention of the US Government.

While the film does have star power the key to this film working is the A-Grade screenplay from Gil Junger. The film works because its script captures the magic that made films and television shows like The Wonder Years and Spy Kids work so well for families. Junger knows that when it comes to writing for families you can’t make things cheesy, no matter how ridiculous the storyline is, and it is okay to tackle topics that kids maybe facing in real life.

While it would be really easy to dismiss Think Like A Dog as ‘just’ a talking dog movie, the film goes a lot deeper than that. In modern society a parent’s imminent separation is something that a lot of children will face. Here Junger explores the situation through the eyes of a child yet doesn’t suger-coat it either.

Likewise with the humour of the film. There is humour in the film but it never becomes that cheesy type of humour that has made so many family films unwatchable over the years. Junger seems to find the right mix – he makes the Government Agents bubbling and comedic without ever making them a complete joke. The same when it comes to the film’s nemesis. It would have been really easy for Mr. Mills to have been written as a Jim Carrey bad guy especially considering he was being played by a television comedy star. Instead making Millls a believable character makes his actions even more sinister, especially when he is trying to lure the kids into his trap.

So much comes together and works well for Think Like A Dog to be such a good family film. Gabriel Bateman acts well beyond his years, Duhamel and Fox put in mature performances that just show they need to be taken seriously as actors while Kunal Nayyar takes a huge step up and shows that he has a future outside of Big Bang Theory. However, the very special ingredient here is an amazing screenplay that allows this film to work for family members of all ages.

 

 

 

 

Kyle McGrath’s Think Like A Dog Review:

 

 

 

 

Average Subculture Rating:

 

 

IMDB Rating:

Black Rainbow (1989) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment Think Like A Dog Reviews:

Nil

 

Trailer:

The Hangover Part II

Summary:Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms), Alan (Zach Galifianakis) and Doug (Justin Bartha) travel to exotic Thailand for Stu’s wedding. After the unforgettable bachelor party in Las Vegas, Stu is taking no chances and has opted for a safe, subdued pre-wedding brunch. However, things don’t always go as planned. What happens in Vegas may stay in Vegas, but what happens in Bangkok can’t even be imagined.

Year: 2011

Australian Cinema Release Date: 20th September, 2001

Australian DVD Release Date: 26th May, 2011

Country: USA

Director: Todd Phillips

Screenwriter: Craig Mazin, Scott Armstrong, Todd Phillips, Jon Lucas (characters), Scott Moore (characters)

Cast: Sasha Barrese (Tracy), Justin Bartha (Doug), Michael Berry Jnr. (Vladi), Dylan Boyack (Doug – 12 Years Old), Bryan Callen (Samir), Nick Cassavetes (Tattoo Joe), Jamie Chung (Lauren), Bradley Cooper (Phil), Sondra Currie (Linda Garner), Zach Galifianakis (Alan), Paul Giamatti (Kingsley), Ed Helms (Stu), Andrew Howard (Nikolai), William Jiang (Chow – 12 Years Old), Ken Jeong (Mr. Chow), William A. Johnson (Stu – 12 Years Old), Mason Lee (Teddy), Yasmin Lee (Kimmy), Tanner Maguire (Phil – 12 Years Old), Aedin Mincks (Alan – 12 Years Old), Todd Phillips (Mr. Creepy), Channon Roe (Stefan Lefrontier), Nirut Sirichanya (Fohn), Penpak Sirikul (Joi), Jeffrey Tambor (Sid Garner), Mike Tyson (himself), Gillian Vigman (Stephanie)

Runtime: 102 mins

Classification:MA15+

SUBCULTURE MEDIA/THE GOOD THE BAD THE UGLY FILM SHOW REVIEWS/RATINGS OF ‘THE HANGOVER II’:

David Griffiths: The original Hangover movie will go down in history as one of the funniest films of all time, but like so many comedies in the past it is unfortunate that while The Hangover Part II is funny it doesn’t go anywhere near being as funny as the original, thanks largely to the fact that the writers seemed to stick too close to the original and not what to do something…well…creative!

This time around it is Stu (Ed Helms – Cedar Rapids, High Road) who is getting married and the wolf-pack find themselves in Thailand. Soon Stu, Phil (Bradley Cooper – Limitless, Brother’s Justice) and Alan (Zach Galifianakis – Due Date, Dinner For Schmucks) find themselves stuck in the middle of another nightmare. With his future father-in-law already hating him Stu is horrified to learn that the wolf-pack have lost his future brother-in-law, Teddy (Mason Lee – Chosen, The Wedding Banquet) somewhere in Bangkok, but have somehow met up with Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong – TV’S Community & American Dad). The race is on to find Teddy and get Stu to the wedding on time.

Surely director Todd Phillips (Due Date, The Hangover) must have realised that this script was a little too close to the original, I mean without giving anything away it is the same old story with some new jokes and new characters thrown in for good measure. Yet the strange thing about The Hangover Part II is that you will still find yourself giggling like a schoolgirl (if not laughing out loud until you cry), although it would have been nice to have had a film that was at least a little different story-wise. I should also possibly warn people that the jokes this time around are crasser than the original so if you are likely to be offended you are probably best advised to give The Hangover Part II a wide birth.

While some praise the three actors who make up the wolf-pack it is pretty clear that is the scenes that star Zach Galifianakis that are the most memorable… which just goes to prove that he is the best comedic actor that is doing the rounds in Hollywood at the moment, he is a classic! Bradley Cooper once again shows that he is equally as good as drama and comedy while Ken Jeong also impresses… thank goodness we can now forget about his performance in Vampires Suck.

If you want than you shouldn’t miss The Hangover Part II, just don’t expect anything remarkably different this time around… in fact to be safe just check your brain in at the Candy Bar on your way in.

 

David Griffiths’ The Hangover Part II review originally from Helium:

 

Congratulations Todd Phillips you’ve managed to run one of the most promising movie franchises into the ground and let it die out with barely a whimper. Phillips set the comedy world ablaze with his 2009 film ‘The Hangover’ – it was fresh, it was out there and above all it did what very few modern day comedies do… it made people. Then came the sequel, and it was obvious that Phillips couldn’t replicate the same success he had with the first. He used the same basic plot but went for over the top gutter humour to get laughs and that in return put fans offside.

Now Phillips returns to finish off the franchise with the third instalment. It seems that he did listen to his fans and not use the same plotline, as the film’s promotions hint at there is no bachelor party kicking things off, he also listened about having no gutter humour… the sad thing is though what he is ended up with is a below par ‘crime’ film that barely has any humour at all.

It’s no secret that this film was always going to centre around Alan (Zach Galifianakis) and the film opens with Stu (Ed Helms), Doug (Justin Bartha) and Phil (Bradley Cooper) being left responsible for taking Alan to a retreat after a run of his medication has seen him go completely off the rails.

Sadly though the trip to the retreat is cut short when the Wolf Pack find themselves run off the road by henchmen working for stereotypical gangster, Marshall (John Goodman) who takes Doug hostage and orders the others to bring him Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong) who owes him $21 million.

It is hard to fathom exactly what Todd Phillips was aiming to do with this film. The humour really feels like it has been sapped completely out of the film, and it ends up becoming a virtual crime drama that doesn’t really ever excel in that genre either. Gone are Mike Tyson’s tiger and Thai shemales and along with are gone the laughs… you know something is very, very wrong when a scene consisting Zach Galifianakis and Melissa McCarthy become cringe worthy rather than garnish any comedy gold.

Fans of ‘The Hangover’ franchise really do have the right to feel a little ripped off by this film. Because the biggest insult to anyone that has sat through the boring parts of the film is the fact that the scenes during the credits are the funniest of the film… now only if Mr. Phillips had decided to start the film there instead.

Sadly, the cast are the big losers (aside from the fans) with ‘The Hangover Part III’ are the cast. Zach Galifianakis does what he can to try and lift the film but poor Bradley Cooper is left floundering with a script that doesn’t really call for Phil to do much at all. As previously mentioned Melissa McCarthy is massively underused as is Ken Jeong who has shown with his work on ‘Community’ that he is actually capable of reaching some pretty good comedy heights.

Sadly, it seems that Todd Phillips really ran out of ideas for ‘The Hangover’ franchise and as a result this final instalment is a ho-hum affair that is largely a disappointment to all who have loved the previous films.

Stars(3)

You can also read another ‘The Hangover Part II’ review by David Griffiths on The Helium Entertainment Channel.

IMDB Rating:The Hangover Part II (2011) on IMDb

Trailer:

The Hangover

Summary: It should be the weekend of all weekends as Phil, Stu and Alan take their friend Doug to Vegas for his Buck’s Party. But when the wake up the next morning with severe hangovers, a baby, a Police Car in their possession and a tiger in their room they know they’ve had a big night. They then realise that Doug is missing and they have absolutely no idea where he is. This weekend is one that they will remember.

Year: 2009

Australian Cinema Release Date: 11th June, 2009

Australian DVD Release Date: 25th November, 2009

Country: USA, Germany

Director: Todd Phillips

Screenwriter: Jon Lucas, Scott Moore

Cast: Andrew Astor (Eli), Sasha Barrese (Tracy), Justin Bartha (Doug), Jernard Burks (Leonard), Bryan Callen (Eddie), Bradley Cooper (Phil), Sondra Currie (Linda), Mike Epps (Black Doug), Nathalie Fay (Lisa), Zach Galifianakis (Alan), Charlene Geisler (Katie), Murray Gershenz (Felix), Heather Graham (Jade), Rachael Harris (Melisa), Ed Helms (Stu), Mitch Hollerman (Max), Ken Jeong (Mr. Chow), Cleo King (Officer Garden), Casey Margolis (Budnick), Todd Phillips (Mr. Creepy), Rob Riggle (Officer Franklin), Brody Stevens (Officer Foltz), Jeffrey Tambor (Sid), Scott ‘Carrot Top’ Thompson (himself), Mike Tyson (himself), Mike Vallely (Neeco), Gillian Vigman (Stephanie), Matt Walsh (Dr. Valsh)

Runtime: 103 mins

Classification:R18+

SUBCULTURE MEDIA/THE GOOD THE BAD THE UGLY FILM SHOW REVIEWS/RATINGS OF ‘THE HANGOVER’:

David Griffiths:Have we just found the funniest comedy of the year. I haven’t laughed so much at a film for quite a long time. The major thing that ‘The Hangover’ has working in its favor is that it has the perfect comedy script. All the situations and one liners are pieces of comic genius and unlike most comedies these days it managed to have the whole audience in absolute stitches… now that is the sign of a very good comedy indeed.

‘The Hangover’ tells the story of three friends; Phil Wenneck (Bradley Cooper), Stu Price (Ed Helms) and Alan Garner (Zach Galifianakis) who take Doug Billings (Justin Bartha) to Las Vegas for his bucks night. For all four of them it is an important trip, it gives the confident Phil time away from his wife and child, it gives the under-the-thumb Stu time away from his bitchy girlfriend and it allows the ‘not-quite-normal’ Alan time to make friends for the first time in his life. However the weekend takes a turn for the worse when Phil, Stu and Alan wake up to find their room trashed, a tiger in the bathroom and the worst hangovers of their lives. To make matters worse, Doug is missing, they have stolen a Police Car and some how inherited a baby. Can they get their wits about them and find Doug so he can make it to his wedding in time? Somehow you just know things are going to get a lot worse before they get better.

The writers of ‘The Hangover’ were previously responsible for ‘Ghosts Of Girlfriends Past’ and they manage to out do what they did there with a script so funny that we haven’t seen anything like it since ‘Road Trip’. Director, Todd Phillips recreates the magic he created with ‘Old School’ and ‘Road Trip’. He manages to keep his comic leads under control and keeps the film believable at all times… that is the main reason why this film works because you honestly believe the situation that the characters find themselves in.

The leads in this film do an amazing job. They truly deserve their lead roles here and are a joy to watch. Zach Galifianakis does an amazing job and shoes that he is much better comedy actor than the likes of Adam Sandler and Jack Black. When you watch him in ‘The Hangover’ you get the feeling that you are watching a true comedy legend in the makings, you can only hope that he gets more opportunities to show his comedy-gold to the world.

There is little surprise that ‘The Hangover 2’ is already in pre-production, this film is so good that it deserves to do well at the box office. ‘The Hangover’ is one of the funniest films of the year and is a must for those who love to laugh out loud.

Stars(4)(out of 5)

IMDB Rating: The Hangover (2009) on IMDb

Trailer: