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Evan Crean Evan Crean
Starpulse Contributing Writer
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A part time archaeologist and obtainer of rare antiquities, Evan is a fan of all things Indiana Jones. He currently resides in the Boston area and also writes movie reviews for his own blog ReelRecon.

'The Lazarus Effect' Is Mediocre, But Mercifully Short

3/2/2015 12:28pm EST
'The Lazarus Effect' Is Mediocre, But Mercifully Short
Here’s four actors you wouldn’t expect to find in a mediocre horror flick: Olivia Wilde, Mark Duplass, Evan Peters, and Donald Glover. Surprisingly they’re all in The Lazarus Effect and they’re actually believable as the scientific team that’s developing a serum to revive recently deceased organisms. The movie starts out strong because it explores relevant concepts like the religious implications of death and whether people should try to play god, but it quickly becomes average once the team succeeds in reviving a dead human.

That’s because the filmmakers do some resurrecting of their own ...
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10 Films We’re Looking Forward To Seeing In 2015

1/11/2015 5:00pm EST
10 Films We’re Looking Forward To Seeing In 2015
Now that we’re a couple days into January, we thought it would be a good time to talk about the movies we’re looking forward to seeing in 2015. There are plenty we’re excited about like Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Jurassic World, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Mad Max: Fury Road, Furious 7, Spectre, and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2. Franchise films like these aren’t challenging to think of though, and if we just stuck with them, our list could easily balloon to 15 or more.

Rather than take the easy way out, we decided to come up with a list of 10 films we’re looking forward to in 2015...
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'If I Stay' Squanders a Chance to Explore the Place Between Life and Death

8/25/2014 11:20am EDT
'If I Stay' Squanders a Chance to Explore the Place Between Life
R.J. Cutler’s teen drama If I Stay has the pretentiousness you’d expect from a movie about people from Portland, Oregon. That’s because it embodies the holier-than-thou Portland attitude frequently skewered on the hilarious show Portlandia. Since If I Stay shares this arrogant mindset, it’s hard to watch it without laughing, especially when the lead character grapples with insignificant problems instead of serious ones.

Mia Hall (Chlöe Grace Moretz) is a talented cellist caught between worlds. She doesn’t fit in with her peers, but she doesn’t identify with her family either. Things chang...
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‘Sin City: A Dame To Kill For’ Is Another Fun Outing, But Lacks Creativity

8/23/2014 5:42am EDT
‘Sin City: A Dame To Kill For’ Is Another Fun Outing, But Lacks
If you’ve seen 2005's Sin City, there’s not much that will surprise you about its sequel Sin City: A Dame to Kill For. Aside from using 3D and telling two new stories not found in Frank Miller’s pulp comic series, Robert Rodriguez covers almost exactly the same ground he did in his previous movie. There are more subtle differences between A Dame to Kill For and its predecessor, although they’re not positive ones.

A Dame to Kill For’s strongest segment is its opening “Just Another Saturday Night,” because it perfectly captures the comic’s brutal sarcastic tone. This funny tale featuring Mic...
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Review: Quale's 'Into The Storm' is a Boring Turdnado

8/8/2014 1:52pm EDT
Review: Quale's 'Into The Storm' is a Boring Turdnado
The best part of Steven Quale’s disaster movie Into the Storm can be summed up in two words: fire tornado. Seeing a massive explosion transform into a flaming twister is fantastic because it’s an entertaining visual and the most unique trick that this picture attempts. It’s too bad that everything else in it has been done before and done better by other films.

Usually when judging disaster movies, there are concessions you make ahead of time, which make it easier to accept their foibles. Since most films in the genre devote the majority of their budgets to special effects, you can assume t...
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Get Absorbed by Apes in ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’

7/14/2014 3:00pm EDT
Get Absorbed by Apes in ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’
You’d never expect to be emotionally engrossed by a film about computer-generated apes, which is why Dawn of the Planet of the Apes genuinely surprises you. Because it gets you invested in these characters early on and keeps them sympathetic throughout the picture, you unwittingly become wrapped up in their story. As a result, there are times when you’re shocked to realize that you’re rooting more for the apes than for the movie’s humans.

Set 10 years after Rise of the Planet of the Apes, this film picks up in a world where disease wiped out most the Earth’s population. This same virus tu...
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‘22 Jump Street’ Makes A Subversive Statement About Sequels

6/15/2014 9:44am EDT
‘22 Jump Street’ Makes A Subversive Statement About Sequels
Only Phil Lord and Christopher Miller could pull off a smart comedy like 22 Jump Street that cleverly uses itself to make a statement about sequels. That’s because in their work, the subversive filmmakers regularly mock movie archetypes through narrative, dialogue, and jokes designed to deliver a single point. And in 22 Jump Street that point is that sequels suck when they follow a formula. Great ones take risks and try new things, just like it does.

Initially, the film is very similar to its predecessor 21 Jump Street. Police officers Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) botch ...
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'Edge of Tomorrow' is a Fast Ride with Fantastic Characters

6/7/2014 8:03pm EDT
Edge of Tomorrow
Say what you want about Tom Cruise in real life, but as an actor he never does anything halfway, which is why he’s easy to root for. Even when he plays abrasive characters like Major Cage in Doug Liman’s sci-fi action flick Edge of Tomorrow, Cruise puts in 100 percent. Because Cruise tries hard you can’t help liking Cage, although a big reason the film keeps you invested, is that Cage works to earn your sympathy.

Unlike other Tom Cruise characters who are brave, Cage is refreshing since he’s the polar opposite. After the armchair officer is ordered to fight in a global offensive against al...
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'Days of Future Past' is Wicked Entertaining and Morally Complex

5/23/2014 10:19pm EDT
'Days of Future Past' is Wicked Entertaining and Morally Complex
In Bryan Singer’s sequel X-Men: Days of Future Past, the emotional stakes are much higher than in his previous films X-Men and X-Men 2. That’s because mutants aren’t just ostracized for being different, they’re attacked as an entire species. Days of Future Past is more engaging due to the morally complex evolutionary battle that mankind wages against mutants in its attempt to defy Darwinism by any means necessary.

Humanity’s extreme measures involve deadly robots called sentinels designed to exterminate mutants. In the movie’s opening, we see a war torn future where the sentinels have kill...
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Review: 'Godzilla' Creature Is The Best Thing About Hollywood’s Latest Adaptation

5/15/2014 8:00pm EDT
Godzilla
Hollywood sucks at making Godzilla movies. Roland Emmerich proved that with his 1998 Godzilla, which didn't even care to get the monster's design right. Given that fiasco, it makes sense why Hollywood waited to make a new one and why Gareth Edwards was tapped to direct. The filmmaker previously wowed audiences with his creature flick Monsters, so he was a logical choice. And although Edwards doesn’t fully break Hollywood’s bad precedent with the famous Japanese creature, his Godzilla is much better than Emmerich’s picture.

For starters, Edwards ensures that Godzilla is instantly recognizab...
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