Archives for posts with tag: Matthew McConaughey

Grade A-

In a “Zootopia” type world, a broke Koala (played by Matthew McConaughey) runs a broken down theater and gets the bright idea to hold a singing contest to generate interest in his failing business.  The prize: $1,000 (mostly in trinkets that comprise McConaughey’s meager possessions).  But his secretary, an old Chameleon (the funniest character in “Sing”), accidentally prints out fliers that says the prize is $100,000, and before the mistake is found, the fliers spread throughout the city of…ummm…the city of “Sing.”

Among the hopeful contestants are: a shy, teenage elephant; a mother of dozens of piglets; a porcupine trying to make it as a solo act; a sleazy mouse (or small rat); and a young gorilla who is looking for another life beyond what his gangster father is offering.  Together, they will endure hardships and craziness that will either bring their lives up or have them crashing back down to their bleak existence.

My most memorable, movie moment of “Sing” is the funny and heartbreaking scene of McConaughey washing cars for money.  Stripping down to his underwear, he soaks up car wash soap into his fur and writhes against a car, removing not only dirt but every ounce of his pride and self-respect.

“Sing” is a movie the entire family will like.  It’s not one of the best animated movies (roughly half of the jokes are a bit lame), but it does offer memorable covers of famous songs and enough fun to be enjoyable.

— M

Grade A

Based on an incredible, true story that I think most people have never heard of, “Free State Of Jones” is about a Confederate soldier who deserts and creates an army of deserters, runaway slaves, and their families to fight the Confederate Army in Mississippi.

Matthew McConaughey plays Newton Knight, a Southern soldier who has had enough of war, had enough of fighting what he believed was a rich man’s war and a poor man’s fight, had enough of Confederate soldiers in his home county of Jones, Mississippi taking almost everything from poor families to supposedly help out with the war effort, and had enough of slavery and all the cruelties that go with one person owning another person.  McConaughey’s insurrection starts off small but dramatic, slowly building up until he and his company are at war with the Confederate States of America.

This movie doesn’t just deal with what happened during the American Civil War, it also delves into the “reconstruction” phase after the war, and the barbaric and ironic aftermath for the former slaves.  Adding further interest and depth to “Free State Of Jones” is the separate story within the movie regarding one of Newton Knight’s descendants (a white man who is part black) who is on trial for marrying a white woman in Mississippi — at the time of the trial, interracial relationships were illegal; and Knight’s descendant, despite looking white, was considered black.   How hypocritical, since white masters often raped their female slaves for hundreds of years while the Southern society turned a blind eye to it.

“Free State Of Jones” is a powerful movie about a small segment of America’s past that should always be remembered.   This story is not just about the evils that men do to one another, it is also a story of hope, love, sacrifice, and redemption.  It deserves to be told.

My most memorable, movie moment of “Free State Of Jones” is the scene when McConaughey, after teaching three little girls and their mother to hold and shoot guns, holds off Confederate soldiers from taking the family’s supplies as “tax” for the war effort.  Now that’s what I call a fine example of the Second Amendment being exercised.

— M

In the not so distant future, Earth has another serious problem to add to its list of serious problems: something called “blight,” which destroys crops and changes the atmosphere.  Within 20 to 40 years, people will starve, and the few who are lucky enough to survive will suffocate.  Ouch.  That’s like the movie “Spartacus” where the slaves who survived the battles against the Roman empire were crucified.

Things aren’t hopeless for our fictional descendants in the movie “Interstellar,” because NASA has secretly developed a plan to send astronauts through a wormhole (a shortcut in space) to seek out habitable worlds.  3 signals have come back — signifying viable worlds — and NASA will need to send a team of astronauts to these signals to rescue the original astronauts and confirm that the new worlds can sustain human life.

Enter Matthew McConaughey, former NASA astronaut/pilot who is chosen to fly the rescue/confirmation team to their destinations.   It’s a job that gives him mixed emotions, as he loves flying and exploring; but he will have to leave his children with the strong possibility of never coming back.   McConaughey’s leaving is especially difficult for his daughter, played by Mackenzie Foy, an extremely talented, young actor.  Earth’s time of being a bounty to its inhabitants is fast dwindling, and McConaughey is going for the slim chance of saving the people of Earth, and thereby saving his family.

One of my memorable moments of this movie is the scene when McConaughey is having a parent teacher conference, and he is told by Foy’s teacher that Foy got into a fight with a student because they were making fun of her reading an old textbook about space exploration, especially the part about the Apollo missions — you know, the trips to the moon and landing on the moon.  It seems the current teachings believe the moon landing was all a scam.   You should see the face on McConaughey when a teacher told him of this!  His eyes were popping out and his neck veins were bulging, and I could tell he was exercising every bit of self-control not to smack the teacher into the past.

Another memorable, movie moment of “Interstellar” is the scene when McConaughey and his team lands on a planet with very shallow water.  At a great distance, they see what appears to be mountains.   But quickly, those “mountains” come closer, threatening to destroy the ship and the astronauts in a few minutes.

My most memorable, movie moment of “Interstellar” is the scene when McConaughey is saying goodbye to his crying, angry daughter.  Nothing McConaughey says can console her.  An intelligent girl, Foy quickly discerns from what her father says to her that he has no idea when and if he will come back from his mission.  With no more time to stay, McConaughey leaves his daughter as he found her.  This may be their last moment together, and they parted with anger and guilt.

Don’t let the nearly 3 hour running time of this movie keep you from watching it.  “Interstellar” is a very good, sci/fi movie with enough action sequences full of suspense in the second and third acts to keep you guessing and wanting to know how it all ends.  Great acting, directing, writing…the movie deserved more financial success.

Before I go, here’s a couple of interesting things: a) Matt Damon gained so much weight I didn’t recognize him during the first minute his character shows up; b) the shots of the exterior of spaceships while in space is silent, to add to the realism (I believe it’s because there is no air in space, and without air, sound cannot travel).

— M

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