Easy Movie-Themed Costumes and Cosplay

Do you like dressing for parties as characters from movies or history? If you’re into costumes or cosplay, you probably have a bunch of fun options lining your closet. If you ever want to attend Comic Con, a costume (or four – one for each  day) is pretty much required. Even if you only dress up for Halloween or the random theme party, some costumes are waaaay easier than others. (Believe me — I attend these kinds of conventions, and some outfits are super complicated!)

Here are some of the easier (But still fun) costumes. You can get most of the garb/accessories cheaply at thrift stores, Amazon, or on eBay. We’ll be adding more looks to this list as we write them up, so bookmark this page and check in from time to time.

How to Dress Like Mamma Mia – Here We Go Again

How to Dress Like Bellatrix Lestrange from Harry Potter

How to Dress Like Queen: Freddy Mercury and 80s Rock Bands

Arthur Dent Costume for Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)

How to Dress Like Queen: Freddie Mercury and 80s Rock Bands

Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury
Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury

With the new Queen movie Bohemian Rhapsody splashing across theaters, you might want to have a little fun dressing up like the members of the iconic rock band, led by Freddie Mercury.

It’s a simple matter to dress like you’re a male band member from the 80s era. As with many costumes, the key is the hair. You’ll be most recognizable if you find a wig featuring long, big hair. You can wear it straight like Roger Taylor (blonde), or curly like Brian May (dark). An afro works too, like John Deacon’s wild do. Tease the hair up and out, and spray the heck out if it for full effect. Add mutton chops for the fun of it.

Alternatively, find a wig with a mullet: short in the front, long in the back. Or cut up any long wig into that style. (If you’re too young to remember mullets, you’re better off.)

If you’re lucky enough to have three fun friends, you can form the entire band. Divvy up the roles to achieve the right quartet of looks from Queen.

Here’s the kind of clothes you need to dress like a band from the 80s: (Pick these things up cheaply at your local Goodwill or thrift store.)

  • A red or blue bandana around the head, or on your ankle (and over the boots).
  • A rock band teeshirt (worn tucked in) and artfully ripped.
  • Tight, slim cut blue jeans, or tight shiny vinyl pants.
  • Any leather, spiked, or studded accessories.
  • Black boots.
  • Bring a guitar, drum sticks, or tambourine.
  • Maybe stick some old Queen sheet music in your back pocket. Bring a small  notebook to scrawl down off-the-cuff lyrics as they come to you. ANYTHING can be a song lyric. Remember, this is Queen we’re talking about. (Scaramouch, scaramouch, will you do the fandango?)
  • A cigarette for one hand and a glass of beer in the other. (You don’t have to actually smoke or drink.)
  • Bonus Points: If you want to find one of the more flamboyant 80s looks, just do a quick search for Band Members Of Queen. You’ll find loads of looks the fashion police would fine you for. Go nuts and wear a silk or velour bathrobe over your outrageous attire.

If you want to dress specifically as Freddie Mercury, the short-hair-and-porno-mustache look will be most recognizable. For the full ensemble, add the following: 

  • Slick your hair back with gel. (Use a wash-out dye to color it black.)
  • Wear some big front teeth.
  • Wear mirrored, metal-rimmed sunglasses all day and night.
  • Slap on a big fake mustache that curves down the sides of your mouth. Possibly grow out your own, if you have the time and feel adventurous.
  • Find a leather arm-band with studs. (Look on Amazon or eBay.)
  • Wear a white, tight tank top and slim-cut blue jeans.
  • Find a black leather belt.
  • Finish the look off with black boots.
  • Dangle a cigarette from your lips.
  • Consider putting a silky Asian robe over it all.

If you want to really be recognized, bring along a microphone and a section of  mic stand, like Freddie did. Remember that Freddie had a larger than life persona! Call everybody darling; flounce around and give out hugs. Pass out Tic-Tacs and tell people they are Quaaludes. Sing some of your favorite Queen — or at least do the stomp and clap anthem We Will Rock You (if you can’t sing). Make everyone around you stomp right along. You’ll probably get the whole room chanting the lyrics with you, so memorize the words. Here are the lyrics to Bohemian Rhapsody, if you have the stamina for the world’s most outrageous six-minute song.

Movie Review – Bohemian Rhapsody

Lyrics to Bohemian Rhapsody

 

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)

Movie Review – The Nutcracker and the Four Realms

Movie Review - The Nutcracker and the Four RealmsI’m giving Nutcracker and the Four Realms an A. It was simply stunning; an absolutely gorgeous film the entire family will love. The only reason it’s not an A+ is because the Sugar Plum Fairy was really awkward to watch. She’s played by the normally fantastic Keira Knightly, who is completely unrecognizable here. I have no idea why the director had her act in so annoying a fashion. And not the cool kind of annoying; just irritating. She was the only real blight in this otherwise glorious adventure fantasy.

Special kudos goes to the girl who played Clara, and the charming fellow as the Nutcracker himself. They had honest chemistry; their scenes together were sweet, funny, and amiable.

Morgan Freeman played his somewhat patented role of the kindly, yet slightly mysterious elder, and it worked well for the part. Hellen Mirren was less fortunate; she wasn’t given much to work with, and I found the “transition” scene a bit unlikely. It was as abrupt as a similar scene with Sugar Plum.

Basically, this is an extremely likable film, and everyone who loves the Christmas season will get a real kick out of it. The magnificent dresses, elaborate hair styles, the lush set designs, and fantastical landscapes were worth the ticket price right there, and seeing this in 3D was absolutely the way to go. Take my advice and see this on the best screen you can find. It’s so darn pretty, in every way.

In another note, there are, of course, some ballet scenes — it’s based on the iconic Nutcracker Suite, and the music should be familiar to anyone with ears. I remember attending an actual Nutcracker performance, as a child in New York City. The show I saw featured Mikhail Baryshnikov… which was a real treat. But honestly, I enjoyed this movie more. A ballet performance can get weary to a youngster, but this film was a very accessible way to follow the story. Just a great holiday experience, where you can relax, let go of stress, and enjoy all the pretty flowing by. Don’t wait for the DVD — see it now.

Grade: A

About The Peetimes: I recommend using the 1st Peetime proactively if you can, since it’s a nice long one with nothing important happening for the plot. The other 2 Peetimes are perfectly acceptable, and you won’t miss the real action or plot development at all.

There are extra scenes during, or after, the end credits of The Nutcracker and the Four Realms. (What we mean by Anything Extra.)

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)

How to Dress Like Bellatrix Lestrange from Harry Potter

I like to cosplay anything from Harry Potter. I’ve got looks for Hermione, Luna Lovegood, Harry himself in a gender-switched role, a gender bent Snape, Tonks, Dolores Umbridge, Professor Trelawny…and my favorite costume, Bellatrix Lestrange. I’ve worn her now to both the Intergalacticon and the San Diego Comic Con.  She is amazingly fun to play when you’re in costume. My heart may belong to Gryffindor, but being a Slytherin is just so much more fun.

How to Become Bellatrix Lestrange: 

One thing to keep in mind for a Bellatrix Lestrange costume: the hair. The billowing mane of crazy dark hair (with a streak of white) is the signature look for the insane but deadly follower of Voldemort. If you’ve got lots of dark hair naturally, great! Tease it up, add a ton of hairspray so it’s big and wild, and there you go. Otherwise, you’ll need a wig. I know for a fact wigs are affordable and plentiful on Amazon. As for the white streak, you can actually order just that — a white bit of hair to clip to your own head. Or use white chalk, or one of those colored hairsprays. Once you’ve got the hair settled, the rest of the attire is simple.

Here’s what you need to get for the full Bellatrix look:

  • Black Boots. Anything like this will do, but if you can find tall boots with laces on the front, you’re ahead of the game. As for all the contents of Bellatrix’s look, take a look at your local Goodwill or other thrift store for inexpensive costume goodies.
  • A long black dress. You can use a long black skirt and top if you can’t find a dress. The key is you want something with faded glory, that’s form fitting, and slightly off-key. An old prom gown would be perfect. I found a fantastic long and sweeping black dress with a tight bodice that I wear when I cosplay Bellatrix, but before I found the gown at Goodwill, I used a drapey, shiny black skirt and a black top with a corset look and long sleeves. If you’re handy with a needle, try and make a lace-up front on your outfit, like Bellatrix wears. Just rip the bodice apart and tie it back with black shoestrings. Add some kind of lacing to the sleeves, and you’re instantly recognizable.
  • You might keep your eyes open for a black lace-up corset, either from a thrift store, of Amazon, or from your own sewing skills. This isn’t as crucial, but it’s another signature look for the insane Death-Eater.
  • A Dark Mark. You can order these as body stickers online, or simply use a Sharpie to draw your own on your inner forearm. Look up images for the Dark Mark online and draw them as best you can. It’s just a skull and a snake — pretty simple to replicate. Feel free to touch the mark with your wand, to show people how to call upon Voldemort! (If you dare.)
  • Speaking of wands, you need one. Fortunately, any stick you find outside will do. Bellatrix has a rigid 12 &3/4 length wand, made of walnut (with a dragon heartstring core)… and it’s bent like some kind of horrible claw. So look for a bent stick. Use it as-is, or get crafty with some brown-black paint. Beddazzle it if you want. Her wand is bare of detail, but you can really do whatever you want. It’s YOUR Bellatrix. Note: If you have the money, you can order a Bellatrix Lestrange replica wand online. I’m looking right now and there are Bellatrix wands on eBay for $10. I have lots of wands, myself. An Elder Wand from Platform 9 & 3/4 in London, a random wand that “chose me” at the Universal Studios Wizarding World (and yes, I was beside myself with joy to get chosen for the demonstration at Ollivanders), and a bunch of wands I made myself from sticks, chair back dowels, and a broken billiards cue.
  • A necklace with a black leather string and bird skull pendant. I found the bird’s head pendant for a few dollars at Joanne fabric. I used a length of black cord from the same place, since I don;t like wearing leather on my neck. You don’t NEED this bird skull necklace, but this is something she always wears. Look for some all-black necklaces and rings, and you’ll be fine. I have a filigree vintage ring with jet set into it that I found for $2 at Goodwill. It’s the little details that count.

That’s it, besides a whole lot of attitude.

In essence, you have to look larger than life, and a whole lot of nuts: Bellatrix  finds torture a delicious entertainment. Act the part. Laugh hysterically in public. Scare people with just how sexily creepy you can be. Rewatch some of the Harry Potter films that feature Bellatrix: The Order of the Phoenix, The Half Blood Prince, and especially the Deathly Hallows, Parts 1 and 2. If you feel especially creative, you can even cosplay Hermione in her polyjuiced Bellatrix garb.

Have fun, and try not to use the Cruciatus Curse on everyone you meet!

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)

MacGuffins Bars at AMC Theaters

If you’ve been to any AMC theater lately, you’ve probably noticed they serve booze now. The little bar areas near the entrance  come with the inside-joke name of MacGuffins (A MacGuffin is any plot device that motivates the characters and advances the story, be it a Ring of Power or a mysterious glowing suitcase). MacGuffins sounds like an Irish pub, but it’s really a clever movie pun.

These mini-bars serve not  just beer and wine, but full cocktails, some of which are created specifically for the movie franchise in question. AMC had the “Twig and Berries” drink for Deadpool 2 (and yes, it’s intended to recall exactly what dirty thoughts you’re thinking); two drink options when The Last Jedi came out — a blue Jedi drink vs a red Sith drink, each with tiny glowing lightsabers; a dino-themed bevvie when Jurassic World 2 was showing; a creepy cool Venom drink most recently; plus a ton of other interesting creations that I’m personally too broke to order.  🙂

None of the beverages are what you’d call a great deal. The draft beers offer the most bang for your $7-$9 bucks with full pours, and there seem to be about five taps, with one rotating seasonal option, and usually an Angry Orchard Cider to boot. The wines are kind of expensive for what you get, hovering between $7 to $14, depending on whether you get a half glass or a full. The specialty cocktails generally run around $13 and up. The prices do fluctuate in different cities. On an recent trip to Florida, I found I could get a super large brew for around $10, making it a better deal than two $7 beverages.

So, they’re not so cheap, and there’s no happy hour, but it’s nice during a long movie to be able to sip on something more grown-up than a soda. I’ve noticed that a typical-sized beer can be nursed through a three hour movie. Usually I’m too caught up in the film to remember there’s a drink handy. But I like having the option. It still feels like a novelty. Remember the line in Pulp Fiction that you could get a real beer at the movies in Europe? Well, we have them now too.

One nice thing about MacGuffins is they usually have a couple of stools at the bar, and often some bistro tables to sit at with friends. This is really nice if you’re early for a movie and waiting for it to start, or if you’re seeing more than one film and want a convivial place to hang. An extra plus: there’s usually no line to order, unlike the overcrowded, chaotic popcorn/hot dog/soda concession stands. It’s a much more peaceful affair.

I’ve been to an Edwards Theater recently, and there was no bar. I’m so used to those being around now that it seems weird to not have a MacGuffins at hand. When you think about it, it’s a little crazy for the other movie chains to miss out on that extra income. I assume Regal, Harkins, and Edwards will probably follow suit from AMC’s example at some point. They’re just throwing easy money away if they don’t.

Anyway, of course, having beverages of ANY sort turns into a trial of holding your full bladder, to the point where you kind of want the characters to die and get over it — just so you can run to the bathroom and relax again. Seriously.

However, since there’s the faithful RunPee app, this is no longer a problem. Yeah, I’m going to plug RunPee here.

RunPee exists to service your bladder. The app (on both iPhone and Android phones) discretely vibrates when its to time go to the bathroom during all the wide release movies, every week and every year, and for the last ten years.

There’s usually between 2 to 4 “Peetimes” — depending on movie length — and the app provides a synopsis of what you’ve missed during the 3 to 5 minutes it takes to run out, do your business, and get back. There are Recommended Peetimes, Emergency Peetimes, and even Alert Peetimes (which warn you if there’s a unpleasant sort of scene coming up, like something featuring torture). The “Extra Scene” feature is very popular, telling you if you need to wait during the end credits or not.

In any case, RunPee goes together very well with MacGuffin’s beers, wines, and cocktails. You can’t pause a movie, but now you don’t have to worry about when to go, or if you should just sit there in agony. 🙂

I think a good idea for AMC’s next iteration would be an upscale barista counter. It would be nice to get a latte during an evening show.

Have you seen the MacGuffins bars? Do you think this is a good idea for movie theaters, and have you ever ordered anything?

[Photos owned by RunPee.com]

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Movie Theater Review – AMC Fashion Valley in San Diego

The RunPee App, Explained

RunPee’s Movie Selection Process

Best Movie MacGuffins Explained

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)

Best Movie MacGuffins Explained

Star Wars is loaded with MacGuffins. Can you name them all?

A MacGuffin is any object that drives the plot and motivates the characters in a movie. You might have seen the name “MacGuffins” over bar bistros in the lobbies of many AMC theaters. That’s an industry in-joke. It sounds like the name of an Irish pub, but it’s really a nod to a long standing film tradition, coined by Alfred Hitchcock himself, for an object that’s an excuse to make characters do things, have a quest for, and usually fight over.

MacGuffins can be almost anything, but the point is, it is a “thing.” Sometimes a MacGuffin can be a person-as-thing, but that’s a bit more rare. Another crucial point about MacGuffins — they’re usually quite fungible. It really doesn’t matter what the thing is, so long as the characters spend their narrative trying to get it (or, in some cases, lose it). 

Here are some well-known movie MacGuffins that you probably never thought about: 

  • Raiders of the Lost Ark — this whole flick is about finding the Ark, protecting the Ark, using the Ark, and finding a safe place to store it. I’m not sure an FBI warehouse is the safest place, but it’s probably as good as keeping it under the sands of Tanis. Note that for all Indy’s efforts,  nothing he does actually helps the cause in the end. He’s just lucky he knew enough not to die from it. And as we saw in the subsequent Indiana Jones films, there’s always some kind of MacGuffin driving the plot, including the Holy Grail. This is a case-book example of MacGuffins in action. (And yes, the holy grail in Monty Python’s Holy Grail counts too.)
  • Titanic – The Heart of the Ocean. Awwww.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of The Black Pearl – the last coin of the cursed gold qualifies, and so does Will Turner himself. I think each film in this increasingly bizarre series centers in a MacGuffin of some sort.
  • Most of the Mission Impossible series has a MacGuffin driving the plot, which really is just an excuse to see Tom Cruise pulling off his own wild stunts.
  • The Necronomicon in Army of Darkness qualifies in a super fun way. Have you seen this movie? (Go find it. Bruce Campbell is the best B actor in the business.)
  • A Fish Called Wanda has the bag of money, and a whole lot of tomfoolery involved in getting it, including an actual fish named Wanda. (Haven’t seen this? It’s one of the world’s funniest movies and stands up to the test of time.)
  • The Project Genesis in Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan. But you knew this, right? Even the whales in The Voyage Home count.
  • Unobtainium is kind of a jokey name, but certainly qualifies as a MacGuffin in Avatar. The natives of Pandora need it to survive, and the invading humans want it. They also kind of get it. Bummer.  It all works out in the end, mostly.
  • The Marvel Cinematic Universe is all about MacGuffins. You could make a case for each of the current 20 films having some kind of MacGuffin. Most of them have to do with Infinity Stones, and who has them, and who tries to protect them from Thanos (or Ronan, or Loki, or the bad guy in Dr. Strange, or that dark Elf in Thor 2). Remember the stones go by all kinds of names, like the Orb, the Aether, the Tesseract, and so on. But it’s not always about the stones: Vulture just wanted alien technology. The Iron Man trilogy was about arc reactor tech. Killmonger wanted the power of Vibranium. Thor sought a replacement for his hammer, so Stormbreaker was the latest MacGuffin. Ant Man is about Quantum Tech and Pym Particles. Name me one MCU movie NOT about a MacGuffin, and you’ll win ten points to your Hogwarts House.
  • Speaking of Harry Potter, I don’t think a single entry in the 8 movie pantheon is MacGuffin-free. Look at the Sorcerer/Philosopher’s stone, the Tri-Wizard cup, the orb of prophecy, the Horcrux search, the quest for the Sword of Gryffindor, and the Deathly Hallows. Since Harry turned out to be a horcrux himself, he qualifies as a personified MacGuffin.
  • Like with the Sword of Gryffindor, swords are common themes to base a quest around. Look at the King Arthur movies: we even have two swords! The sword in the stone is one, and the one the Lady of the Lake tossed at Arthur. (“You can’t expect to wield supreme power just ’cause some watery tart threw a sword at you!” <— recognize this quote? If you’re a true cinephile, you should.)
  • The Lord of Rings is a great exception to the ideal of questing FOR an object. In this case, the fellowship is about destroying something: the One Ring of Power. It’s a self-proclaimed fool’s quest, but somehow, the good guys win. (Although not without great cost along the way.)
  • The Lord of the Rings does the sword thing too, with the shards of Narsil being forged as a great flaming weapon, to be reforged and wielded only by a descendant of Isildur. So we can check that box too.
  • In the Hobbit, it’s the Arkenstone.
  • The Wizard of Oz has the Ruby Slippers.
  • In the various incarnations of Dune, the Sandworms are an unusual MacGuffin, which, like Harry Potter, are also in the form of a living being. The spice itself is a HUGE MacGuffin — without it, space travel would simply cease. And this relates right back to the Sandworms. Lost yet? Ignore David Lunch and the SciFi versions; re-read the novel. I hear there will be yet another filmatic attempt at Dune soon…so we can hope it’s the definitive version.
  • In a less fantasy mode, we’ve got Pulp Fiction. What exactly was in the magically glowing briefcase? Was it Marcellus Wallus’ soul, as many fans speculated? We never find out, although it actually doesn’t matter in the end.
  • Fantastic Beasts also featured a magical suitcase that all characters sought. In this film, however, we definitely saw what was in there.
  • Star Wars is usually about MacGuffins, which are often force-users (ie – people). In Solo, look at how Coaxium drives the plot. The Millennium Falcon  qualifies too. In The Force Awakens, Luke himself is the MacGuffin (and so is his lightsaber). A New Hope and Rogue One have the stolen Death Star data tapes. Star Wars is loaded with MacGuffins, including R2D2 himself. Once you start noticing these, you can’t stop. (Kind of like eating Pringles.)
  • The Maltese Falcon – an obvious one, from a classic-era film. Hmmm, also Rosebud in Citizen Cane.
  • All heist, thriller, and caper movies are about finding a thing. Often a tech thing, and sometimes just money — as in Die Hard. I dare you to name a caper that isn’t about acquiring something. Look at the Ocean’s films for a start. Everyone’s after something, and the whole plot hinges around that thing.
  • Apollo 13 and even First Man are about similar MacGuffins, be they the moon itself, or just finding a way to get home from said moon.
  • Are you a Buffy fan? Remember her Axe of Power? MacGuffin. The entire series is loaded with MacGuffins, including Buffy herself.
  • In the X-Files, aliens from space qualify as MacGuffins. And I’m not sure this was ever resolved. At least Scully learned to believe. 😉

Clearly, this is an ongoing list. I can’t sit here all day naming every flick with a MacGuffin. But feel free, absolutely, to name your favorites in the comments. It’s good geeky fun!

MacGuffins Bars at AMC Theaters

Movie Theater Review – AMC Fashion Valley in San Diego

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)

Virgin Movie Review – Independence Day 2: Resurgence

What did I just watch? This movie was incoherent. It’s probably better if you recently did a rewatch of the original Independence Day film before viewing 2016’s Resurgence, but I can’t be sure if this is just me not paying enough attention, or the movie being made mostly of nonsense.

In spite of not understanding most of the narrative, I liked it. I love me some interesting science fiction, even when it’s more fiction than science. It was pretty, and showed neat sequences of mankind’s adaptation to alien technology, which was just darn cool. Resurgence had Data Brent Spiner back on the big screen (YAY, says the geek in me). And Jeff “Must Go Faster” Goldblum, and pretty boy Liam Hemsworth. What’s not to love?

Well, the movie was universally panned, and I can see why. It’s got a lot of side stories that don’t pay off, the big action set-pieces were too clearly CGI, and there were too many characters who didn’t actually do anything. I think the writers threw spaghetti on the wall to see what would stick. What’s the word I want? Oh, yeah: it was a hodgepodge.  Very attractive, but strangely inconsequential.

Maybe I need to see it again. What was the deal with the school bus in the dry lake? Why did the aliens have a Queen that looked and acted just like the Zenomorph Queen from Aliens? What was the helpful white alien sphere about? And why was it so momentous that Bill Pullman shaved his beard?

I think there was just too much going on. I mainly came way thinking, “Looks cool,” and “Stuff blowed up real good.” As Goldblum’s character said, “They like to blow up landmarks.” This time we see Beijing dumped on the Tower Bridge in London.  The White House was spared this time around, but I think I didn’t care. Again, I ask, what happened here?

There’s 20 real-life years of buildup to this underwhelming sequel. Is it that Will Smith’s character was killed off-screen in the meantime that made it lack so? I honestly don’t care enough to figure it out.

To Summarize: I actually had a good time watching this long, bladder-busting movie. (How long? 2 hours and 9 minutes, to be precise.) I didn’t really care that it was a dumb, messy narrative until later, as in right now, while penning my review. As long as you’re content to see some weird alien shit, and watch  the good people of Earth fighting  against almost insurmountable odds, it’s worth streaming this flick. Just don’t pay out good money for it on a DVD.

Movie Grade: C- (This is a higher grade than it probably deserves, but I had a good time with the pretty. So there.)

 

 

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)

Virgin Movie Review – Guardian

Well, this was a typical disaster film that somehow I missed on the first round. I LOVE disaster movies, and thrillers, of which Guardian managed to tick on both boxes. The problem here is that it wasn’t much of a film, being both derivative and predictable. The lead actors seemed to sensed this, apparently, since they pulled a performance that seemingly was all about the paycheck.

I see a lot of thrillers and usually love them. This makes me a harsher critic than some: for example, watching this with my mother, she thought Guardian was the BOMB. Me, I thought: meh. Seen it before, many times. It was basically  Top Gun on the ocean. The bar pickup scene, the bucking of authority figures, the sad ‘father’ backstory of the lead (Ashton Kutcher), and the climax of the Maverick character saving the day…seen that, done that. Kutcher even had a young Tom Cruise flavor. So…yeah, wasn’t hugely impressed. And Kevin Costner basically reprised his reluctant mentor role from Bull  Durham. Top Gun and Bull Durham are great flicks, but I’m not sure we needed to see this story again.

Whatever. Costner is aging and looks it, but did a nice job as the troubled, yet tough as nails instructor. I honestly hope it’s not that difficult to make it in the US Coast Guard, but what do I know? The boot camp scenes made it look  pretty awful. When you’ve seen other films about boot camp stress, like Stripes and Private Benjamin, I have to wonder what things are really like for the grunts in the military.

Costner basically pulled an “Armageddon” role, so it’s up to you whether this film is your cup of tea. What I did enjoy were the bookend scenes of the Coast Guard rescues in the Bering Straits. I’d have given this a much higher grade if it was all about the sea rescues, and not the typical rebellious garbage at the Coast Guard Academy.

My real hope is that after this film , the Coast Guard got a lot more recruits. (Jurassic Park saw a lot of young folks learning to be Paleontologists after that film, for example.)

So, is the role of Fischer basically Maverick? Yeah, mostly. We see a lot of things we’ve seen before: teacher abuses student and bonds with him, student flirts with a hard to get girl in a bar with a dorky line, and a rescue scene proving the metal of the fresh young buck.

I’d like to have skipped the boot camp stuff, personally. The sea rescues were exciting and the best part of the film, leaving me thinking we could have skipped the origin story of Fisher and had more insights into Coast Guard life. The sea cave climax was really cool. The Bering Straights scenes were fascinatingly dangerous. It was hard to follow some of it during the chaos, but I think that was intentional.

The best and most resonant part of the film was the about the Legend of the “Guardian” that helps drowning sailors. This part of the film alone elevated the movie from pedestrian to worthwhile. So pay attention to that when you watch the film.

To Sum: the flick is derivative and a bit boring in the middle stretch. I’d suggest streaming this and kicking back for a mostly middling, yet sometimes exciting film. 

Movie Grade: B-

 

 

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)

Hit Song From the Movie Smallfoot – Let It Lie – by Common

Really, this song is awesome, but is a spoiler. You’re warned!

I loved the animated Smallfoot, and even gave it a coveted A+ rating. One of the highlights that pushed it that stratospheric score are the appealing songs through out. The absolute, 100% standout number, goes to  Let It Lie, sang by the StoneKeeper (the singer Common). I listen to a daily, for some reason, set in my Work Playlist. It’s that good. It lends a true twist and deep backstory to an otherwise light and fun outing.

I originally included the song link in my Smallfoot review, but decided to tease it out into its own post to make it easier to search for and find (use the Magnifying Lens in the upper right navigation corner to Search for Let it Lie, or Common, or Smallfoot).

It’s too soon to show the video without using a bootleg copy, but you can give it a listen on the link below.

I must warn you now: DO NOT LISTEN IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN SMALLFOOT.  The song gives away the big secret, and it’s a doozy. You’ll want to keep this a surprise: it sends chills down my spine every time. It’s the also only song in a PG rated children’s movie that mentions genocide. That’s got be some kind of record!

So consider this a big Spoiler Alert. Stop here if you even PLAN to wait for the DVD.  

Movie Review – SmallFoot

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)

Guardians of the Galaxy Song – Guardians Inferno

I think this is our long-awaited Dance Off.

The Guardians of the Galaxy, Vols 1 and 2, are already beloved movie icons, both inside and outside the geek crowd. As a big part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, their reach extends from Disney theme parks, with the hugely popular Guardian’s Breakout ride, to this little gem of a disco parody song called The Guardians Inferno.

It’s a catchy tune, and watching the video is great fun. Almost every character (plus erstwhile  director James Gunn) are featured in shiny, tight, glittery, and frankly outlandish outfits that wouldn’t stick out on the dance floor in the 80s.  Mutton chops and afros make an appearance too. If you’ve seen the movies, you’ll understand why David Hasselhoff (AKA Zardu Hasslefrou) sings this song — and if you know anything about Marvel comics, you’ll adore the Stan Lee cameo at the end.

Try to see if you can spot these characters from the films:

  • Gamora
  • Kraglin/Rocket
  • Drax
  • Nebula
  • Mantis
  • Star Lord

Just remember, WE ARE GROOT.

Jill Florio

Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)