Gil Mansergh’s Cinema Toast

Films Opening 5/30/14

Maleficent not Magnificent, A Million Ways to Die In the West not that funny


Maleficent  (PG)

Starring: Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, Imelda Staunton, Sharlito Copley, Sam Riley, Miranda Richardson

Directed by: Robert Stromberg


2 and 1/2  pieces of see it for Angelina Jolie toast 


A Million Ways to Die In the West (R)

Starring: Seth MacFarlane, Amanda Seyfried, Giovanni Ribisi, Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Neil Patrick Harris

Directed by: Seth MacFarlane

Seth MacFarlane (who wrote, directed, produced and stars in this film) can’t really show you a million different ways to die, but he sure crams a lot of innovative end-of-life events, in this 90-minute film. Essentially, this is the film’s one joke—replayed (what seems like) a million times. The photography in iconic Monument Valley is beautiful, as are Theron and Seyfried, but MacFrlane miscast himself as the lead. The other actors get into their 19th Century characters, while the “star” is so 21st Century it’s embarrassing.

2 pieces of no saddles blazing here toast 


Impossible Light (NR)

Starring: Leo Villareal, Ben Davis

Directed by: Jeremy Ambers

If you have been fortunate enough to catch the Bay Bridge LED light display on a clear night, you know what a treat it provides. This documentary reveals the what, where, why and most importantly, the who of this artistic installation.

3 pieces of more than just pretty lights toast 


Fed Up (R)

Narrated by: Katie Couric

Directed by: Stephanie Soechtig

Katie Couric narrates, while Bill Clinton, Michael Pollan and others educate the dangers posed by hidden “sugar” in almost every processed food. Using lots of different names, (high fructose corn syrup, sucrose, glucose, maltose, lactose, etc.) sugars are the sweet-tasting carbohydrates lumped into the C6-H12-O6 formulation. Some form of sugar is included in almost every packaged food, and, for the first time in forever, over 30% of the world’s people are obese as a (possibly) direct result. I’m not sure who will pay to see this film (except for the anti-sugar choir) because it doesn’t offer anything “new.”  FYI, those so-called “light” beers are filled with Genetically Modified corn syrup to “improve the flavor.”

3 pieces of well made but nothing new toast


Endless Love (PG-13)

Starring: Alex Pettyfer, Bruce Greenwood, Gabriella Wilde, Robert Patrick, Joely Richardson

Directed by: Shana Feste

This film should have been titled “Endless Boredom.” The director of this remake is no Franco Zeffirelli, the infamous sex scene made famous by Brooke Shields is gone, and the new plot fails to give any motivation to the boy’s infatuation or even steal the rival family backstory from Romeo and Juliet. What we are left with is some  pretty pictures populated by pretty youngsters crammed into a series of pop music videos. As Rhett Butler would have said: “We don’t give a damn.”

1 and 1/2 pieces of tepid remake toast


I, Frankenstein (PG-13)

Starring: Aaron Eckhart, Bill Nighy, Miranda Otto

Directed by: Stuart Beattie

Apparently Dr. Frankenstein’s monster wasn’t killed by the crazed mob. 100 years from now, he’s still alive (or is he?) in a time when the world is besieged by (what else?) zombies. Cobbled together with parts from much better films (remind you of anyone or anything), the result is a mess sure to be in contention for a “Razzie” (Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Film of the Year).

1/2 pieces of they’ve got to be kidding! toast