Dean’s Reviews: “Last Stand”, “Broken City”, “LUV”

WGN’s Dean Richards reviews this weekends’ new releases:

THE LAST STAND

“The Last Stand” is the former California governor’s first full-starring role since leaving office and the explosion of his private life.

It’s mostly high-speed car chases and high power gun battles as a drug cartel king being transported by the FBI escapes, and is headed right for a sleepy Arizona border town where he’s an ex-big city narc,  now a low-key sheriff.

there are classic Schwarzenegger moments as he takes control, but never taken seriously or over done.  And the quirky, supporting cast keeps the movie light and fun – sort of an aging “Terminator” that meets Andy Griffith’s Mayberry.

The script here isn’t the strongest in the world and some of the dialogue between the supporting characters is silly, but I mostly left this movie feeling like I had an hour and half of fun.

It’s a Dean’s List “B”

BROKEN CITY

There’s also the political thriller, “Broken City” with Russell Crowe as the mayor of New York City who hires a high profile ex-cop, Mark Wahlberg, to tail his wife played by Catherine Zeta Jones, who he says is cheating on him.

The investigation finds infidelity, dirty political maneuvering, murder and just about everyone is a likely suspect.

It’s a good story that gets a little muddy toward the ending, but good performances especially by Crowe as a powerful political player will keep you intrigued and mostly wondering how dirty, dirty politics really is.

It’s another Dean’s List “B”
LUV

A huge disappointment from a friend of the Morning Show, Chicago’s own, Common.

In “LUV” he plays an ex-convict trying to start the legit business , but to do it, he has to make that one last drug score. Only he does it  with his 11-year-old nephew who idolizes him in tow, because he wants to teach him how to be a man – exposing him to the seedy world of drugs, thugs, guns and murder.

It’s a bad “big-brother” story with one cliche after another. But with gun violence in news, the timing of a movie that glorifies gun play as a way to “being a man” was disturbing – especially from Common who is so “pro-positive” for youth in real life.

It’s a Dean’s List “D-”

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