Talladega Nights The Ballad of Ricky Bobby

  • Directors: Adam McKay
  • Producers: Judd Apatow, Jimmy Miller, Will Ferrell, Adam McKay
  • Writers: Adam McKay, Will Ferrell
  • Genres: Action, Comedy, Sport
  • Actors: Will Ferrell, John C Reilly, Sacha Baron Cohen, Michael Clarke Duncan, Leslie Bibb, Amy Adams, Gary Cole, Jane Lynch

Ricky Bobby was born to “go fast.” He was born in the back seat of his father’s car, and raised solely by his mother, Len Leplin, while his drug addict and alcoholic father, Reese Bobby, is absent. Many years later, while working on a pit crew as the jackman for a race team, he replaces an uninterested driver and ends up finishing in third place, despite starting mid-race in last place. Ricky quickly soars to the top of NASCAR, achieving fame and fortune at Dennit Racing and meeting his future wife, Carley (Bibb). He arranges to get his best friend, Cal, as the second driver of the team.

Fast forward to a couple of years later. While on top of the racing world, Ricky is challenged by homosexual French Formula One & CART driver, Jean Girard (Cohen). Girard outperforms Ricky on the track and becomes Dennit Racing’s top driver. Ricky, desperate to regain his dominance, pushes himself too hard and ends up in a spectacular wreck, during which he believes that he is on fire. While recovering, he persists in the belief that he is paralyzed. His tests at Rockingham Speedway show that he has lost his touch and he fails to regain a spot on the team. Carley, yearning to be married to a top NASCAR driver, plans a divorce and a marriage to Cal before Ricky gets home that night.

Ricky takes his two sons, Walker and Texas Ranger and moves back home with his mother. He takes a job as a pizza delivery and is reduced to using a bicycle after losing his license. With his life at its low point, Reese suddenly reenters Ricky’s life and tries to teach Ricky to drive by using the fear he experienced. With the retraining and guidance of his father, Ricky regains his confidence but still refuses to race after Reese walks out. When Ricky runs into his former assistant, Susan, at a bar, she convinces Ricky to get back into racing at the Talladega 500 and they fall in love. The race ends with all cars being wrecked and Girard and Bobby running on foot to the finish line. Girard then offers to shake hands with Ricky after Ricky beats him, but instead Girard passionately kisses him. Both drivers are disqualified for violating race procedures and Cal wins the race, having been in third prior to the wrecks. Ricky and Cal repair their friendship and the family, consisting of Ricky, Susan, Walker, Texas Ranger, and Ricky’s mother, meet Reese in the parking lot and reunite for a dinner during which they plan to get thrown out of Applebee’s.

Street Fighter The Legend of Chun Li

  • Directors: Andrzej Bartkowiak
  • Producers: Patrick Aiello, Ashok Amritraj
  • Writers: Justin Marks
  • Genres: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller
  • Actors: Kristin Kreuk, Chris Klein, Neal McDonough, Robin Shou, Moon Bloodgood, Josie Ho, Taboo, and, Michael Clarke Duncan

The movie opens with Chun Li narrating her experience growing up aspiring to be a concert pianist. As a child, she moves from San Francisco to Hong Kong with her family. There, along with piano, she learns Wushu from her father, Xiang, who is a well connected businessman. One night, her home is attacked by Bison and his henchman. Chun Li’s father fights them off until Balrog grabs a hold of a young Chun Li, forcing him to surrender. As Bison and his men are leaving with Xiang, Chun Li’s mother tries to stop them. Balrog just punches her.

Years later, Chun Li grows up and becomes a talented concert pianist. At the end of one of her concerts, she receives a scroll written in Ancient Chinese text. On her way home, she sees a mysterious homeless man getting assaulted by street thugs. After the thugs leave, Chun Li tends to him and notices a spiderweb tattoo on his hand. Meanwhile, Xiang is shown working for Bison as a prisoner. In return for his services, he is allowed to view pictures of his daughter all grown up. Back home, Chun Li’s mother finally loses her battle to cancer as Chun Li and her servants mourn her loss at a funeral.

Back home, Chun Li is settled down as Gen pays her a visit. He shows her an ad for a Street Fighter tournament, telling her about a Japanese fighter named Ryu. Chun Li declines, saying that she’s home for now.

Brother Bear

  • Directors: Aaron Blaise, Robert Walker
  • Producers: Igor Khait, Chuck Williams
  • Writers: Tab Murphy, Lorne Cameron, David Hoselton, Steve Bencich, Ron J Friedman
  • Genres: Animation, Adventure, Family, Fantasy
  • Actors: Joaquin Phoenix, Jeremy Suarez, Rick Moranis, Dave Thomas, Jason Raize, D B Sweeney, Joan Copeland, Michael Clarke Duncan

Long ago in a post-ice age North America, there are three Indian brothers named Kenai (Joaquin Phoenix), Denahi (Jason Raize), and Sitka (D.B. Sweeney). Denahi is the middle brother, and Sitka, the oldest. Kenai, the youngest, hates bears because they fight for the same food, overtake the land, and ruin his coming-of-age ceremony. Each brother was given his own totem when they came of age: Sitka, the eagle of guidance and Denahi, the wolf of wisdom. At the ceremony, Kenai is presented with the bear of love. Kenai questions the totem he has been given with his brother by saying that “[bears] don’t love anyone, they don’t think, they don’t feel […]”, calling them thieves when he notices the stolen fish basket.

When Sitka is killed in a battle with the bear that stole the basket, Tanana (Joan Copeland), the tribal shaman, officiates a funeral rite for Sitka. Suddenly Kenai ignores the village teachings of brotherhood with animals and sets out to hunt the bear for revenge and eventually kills it. To punish Kenai, the Great Spirits, represented by the spirit of Sitka, transform him into a bear. Unfortunately his other brother, who was pursuing Kenai to stop him, doesn’t realize what has happened. He finds Kenai’s torn clothes and believes the bear took his other brother’s life. In grief, he vows revenge.

Yet, while Kenai has regained his humanity, he can no longer talk with Koda, a cub who is now orphaned yet again. Rather than abandon Koda, Kenai tells Sitka that Koda needs him. Denahi calls Kenai “little brother” instead of “baby brother” and Sitka transforms Kenai (by his choice) back into a bear. The three brothers then share a hug and say goodbye, while Koda and his mother’s spirit do the same.The film ends with Kenai as a bear, accompanied by Koda, being welcomed back by his tribe and pressing his pawprint to the cliff wall, which bears the handprints of countless generations of other tribe members who also fulfilled the calling of their totem animals.

Daredevil

  • Directors: Mark Steven Johnson
  • Producers: Avi Arad, Gary Foster, Arnon Milchan
  • Writers: Screenplay, Mark Steven Johnson, Comic Book, Stan Lee, Bill Everett
  • Genres: Action, Crime, Fantasy, Thriller
  • Actors: Ben Affleck, Jennifer Garner, Michael Clarke Duncan, Colin Farrell

The film begins in medias res with Daredevil clutching a cross at the top of a church, wounded. Daredevil clambers into the church and collapses as a priest who knows his identity approaches him in concern. The events that led to this scene are shown.

As a child, Matt lived in Hell’s Kitchen with his washed-up boxer father, Jack Murdock. Matt’s father constantly reminds Matt to get an education and make something of himself, and not wind up like him. One fateful day, when young Matt takes a shortcut home, he stumbles across his father beating up a man at the behest of local mob boss Fallon. Horrified, Matt runs blindly away from the scene, and runs afoul of a forklift which swerves to avoid him and accidentally pierces a barrel of toxic fluid, drenching Matt’s face in the substance.

An unspecified amount of time later, Matt awakens to find that he is blind. However, despite his loss of sight, his other four senses functioned with super-human accuracy, hearing and touch in particular. While Matt uses his radar-like hearing to train his body, his redeemed father decides to fight again in the ring. One night, Fallon approaches his father and orders him to throw the fight; when he does not, he is brutally murdered by a shadowy figure later revealed to be the Kingpin. Matt is heartbroken by his father’s death.

A final post-credits scene features Bullseye in full body traction on a hospital bed killing a pesky fly despite being largely immobilized.

Planet of the Apes

  • Directors: Tim Burton
  • Producers: Richard D Zanuck, Ralph Winter
  • Writers: Screenplay, William Broyles Jr, Lawrence Konner, Mark Rosenthal, Novel, Pierre Boulle
  • Genres: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller
  • Actors: Mark Wahlberg, Tim Roth, Helena Bonham Carter, Michael Clarke Duncan, Paul Giamatti, Estella Warren

In the year 2029, aboard the United States Air Force space station Oberon, Leo Davidson works closely with primates who are trained for space missions. His favorite simian co-worker is a chimpanzee named Pericles. With a fatal electromagnetic storm approaching the station, a small space pod piloted by Pericles is used to probe the storm. Pericles’ pod heads into the storm and disappears. Against his orders, Leo takes a second pod and goes in pursuit of Pericles. Entering the storm, Leo loses contact with the Oberon and crashes in a world in the year 3002. He comes across a world where humanoid apes speak human language and control human beings as slaves.

Leo comes across a female chimpanzee named Ari, who protests the awful treatment humans receive. Ari decides to buy Leo and a female slave named Daena to have them work as servants in the house of her father, Senator Sandar. Leo escapes his cage and frees other humans. Ari sees them, but Leo manages to convince Ari to join their cause. Leo forms a human rebellion against the apes and develops a love triangle with Ari and Daena. General Thade and Colonel Attar march ape warriors in pursuit of the humans. Leo discovers Calima (the temple of “Semos”), a forbidden but holy site for the apes. Calima turns out to be the remains of the Oberon, his former space station, which has crashed on the planet’s surface and looks ancient (the name Calima coming from the sign “CAution LIve aniMAls”, the letters Calima being those not covered in dust). According to the computer logs, the station has been there for thousands of years. Leo deduces that when he entered the vortex he was pushed forward in time, while the Oberon, searching after him, was not, crashing on the planet long before he did.

General Thade chases Leo into the Oberon, where he attacks Pericles and breaks his leg. Thade becomes trapped in the pilot’s deck and last seen huddled under a control panel, still alive. Leo decides it is time for him to leave the Planet of the Apes, after he says goodbye to Daena, who loves him and kisses Ari. Leo climbs aboard Pericles’ pod, which is undamaged, and uses it to travel back in time through the same electromagnetic storm. Leo crashes in what appears to be Washington, D.C. on Earth in 2001. He looks up to see the Lincoln Memorial is now a monument in honor of General Thade. A swarm of ape police officers descend on the confused Leo, who is left to wonder what Thade has done to this world.

Armageddon

  • Directors: Michael Bay
  • Producers: Michael Bay, Jerry Bruckheimer, Gale Anne Hurd
  • Writers: Screenplay, Jonathan Hensleigh, J J Abrams, Story, Robert Roy Pool, Jonathan Hensleigh, Adaptation, Tony Gilroy, Shane Salerno
  • Genres: Action, Romance, Sci-Fi, Thriller
  • Actors: Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thornton, Liv Tyler, Ben Affleck, Will Patton, Peter Stormare, Keith David, Owen Wilson, William Fichtner, Jessica Steen, Jason Isaacs, Ken Campbell, Grayson McCouch, Clark Brolly, Marshall R Teague, Chris Ellis, Eddie Griffin, John Mahon, Steve Buscemi, Michael Clarke Duncan

After several meteoroids destroy the Space Shuttle Atlantis and bombard New York City, NASA discovers that an asteroid the size of Texas is on a direct collision course with Earth and will likely wipe out all life on the Earth and destroy it. It is not publicly revealed that it will hit the Earth within 18 days. The scientists at NASA devise a plan to activate a nuclear bomb at a precise point under the asteroid’s surface which will split it in two and cause it to miss the Earth. NASA locates the best oil driller on the planet, Harry Stamper, to get advice. Harry and Grace, his daughter, are taken to NASA and Dan Truman, the head of NASA, informs him of the situation. Harry immediately recognizes that he and his crew must accompany the astronauts on the mission to ensure the job is done properly. After Harry’s crew is collected from across the country and NASA acquiesces to their demands, they are put through a training program and outfit a drilling rig with the proper equipment for the job.

When a meteorite strikes Shanghai, China, destroying the city and causing a tsunami, around 50,000 people die. At this point, the pending mission is revealed to the world. Two specially designed military shuttles, Freedom and Independence are launched simultaneously and shortly dock at a Russian space station (crewed by Lev Andropov) to refuel. AJ encounters a problem stopping the pumps after the ships tanks are full and the station explodes. The crews and Lev Andropov escape. The two shuttles perform a high G-force slingshot procedure around the Moon to land on the backside of the asteroid. However, as they enter the trailing debris of the asteroid, the Independence is struck and crash lands on the asteroid. The Freedom manages to land on the surface but misses the target landing zone. They land on an area of hard iron which will be difficult to drill through. The Freedom team try to drill but suffer several setbacks and losses due to the unexpected conditions. It is revealed that if the deadline is missed, Colonel Sharpe would activate the nuclear device on the surface. However, a surface explosion would not be sufficient to divert the asteroid from hitting the Earth. Harry is able to convince Colonel Sharpe to help them attempt to finish the job. During this time, another meteorite wipes out much of Paris, France.

All seems lost when their drilling machine is blasted off the asteroid by a gas vent, but the Freedom crew learns that the other team managed to survive the crash thanks to Lev Andropov and have driven the second drilling machine to the drilling site. Harry puts AJ in charge of finishing the drilling and they successfully drill to the necessary depth. The team lowers the bomb into the hole, but find that they can not detonate remotely after a rock storm damages the bomb’s trigger, as well as killing one of the crew members. Truman tells the team that someone is going to have to stay behind to activate the bomb to destroy the asteroid. AJ is picked to detonate the bomb remotely after drawing straws, but Harry disables his air supply and takes his place. As the shuttle prepares to depart, Harry sends a final message to his daughter and gives his full support for her to marry AJ. Harry manages to activate the bomb moments before the critical deadline, and the asteroid halves successfully miss the Earth. The remaining crew of the Freedom return to Earth as heroes, AJ reuniting tearfully with Grace while the others are met by their loved ones. Grace and AJ soon marry, while Harry and their lost crew members are memorialized.

Sin City

  • Directors: Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez, Special Guest Director, Quentin Tarantino
  • Producers: Elizabeth Avellan, Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez
  • Writers: Frank Miller
  • Genres: Action, Crime, Thriller
  • Actors: Bruce Willis, Mickey Rourke, Clive Owen, Jessica Alba, Benicio del Toro, Brittany Murphy, Elijah Wood, Rosario Dawson, Jaime King, Michael Clarke Duncan, Alexis Bledel, Powers Boothe, Michael Madsen, Josh Hartnett, Devon Aoki, Carla Gugino, Rutger Hauer, Marley Shelton

In a penthouse on the roof of a skyscraper overlooking Basin City, a fancy party is in progress. A woman (Marley Shelton), dressed in a red evening gown, is alone on the balcony. A man (Josh Hartnett), who is narrating, walks up behind her and offers her a cigarette. They exchange some small talk, he tells her that he sees in her eyes a “crazy calm”, of someone who is tired of running, but doesn’t want to face her problems alone. He tells her that he will save her, and take her far away. They kiss, then he shoots her. She dies in his arms. He says that he does not know who she was running from, but will “cash her check in the morning.”

In the DVD commentary, Frank Miller explains that the victim in this story (the Customer of the title) is actually committing suicide. The unnamed woman had dated a mobster, and when she tried to break it off, he said that he would kill her in the most terrible way possible. She then used her connections to hire a hitman (known as the Salesman) to provide her with a quick death.

On the docks of Sin City, aging police officer John Hartigan (Bruce Willis) is attempting to stop serial child murderer Roark Junior (Nick Stahl) from raping and killing 11-year-old Nancy Callahan (Makenzie Vega). Junior is the son of the powerful Senator Roark (Powers Boothe), who has paid off many police to cover up his son’s crimes, including Hartigan’s partner Bob (Michael Madsen). Bob tries to convince Hartigan to walk away, and appears to succeed, but Hartigan sucker-punches him, knocking him out cold. Hartigan then makes his way into a warehouse, knocking unconscious two local criminals. Junior is inside with the frightened Nancy and two armed henchmen, who are making sure that Junior and Nancy “get along” before leaving them alone. Hartigan shoots and kills the henchmen, but Junior shoots Hartigan in the shoulder, grabs Nancy and runs out to the docks. Hartigan catches up to Junior and shoots off his ear, causing him to drop Nancy. He then shoots off Junior’s hand and genitals, before being shot in the back several times by Bob, who has recovered. Bob tells Hartigan to stay down, but Hartigan knows he must buy time for backup to arrive (as Bob will kill Nancy if they are alone) so he tries to pull his reserve gun, causing Bob to shoot him several more times. As the sirens approach, Hartigan lapses into unconsciousness knowing that Nancy is safe, justifying himself with the words “An old man dies, a little girl lives; fair trade.”

An injured Becky departs from a hospital, talking on a cell phone with her mother. While riding in the elevator, she is met by the Salesman. Stunned, Becky hangs up the phone. The Salesman offers Becky a cigarette, implying that he was going to kill her, since he also offered the customer from Act 1 a cigarette, but it cuts to black before anything is done.

The Green Mile

  • Directors: Frank Darabont
  • Producers: Frank Darabont, David Valdes
  • Writers: Novel, Stephen King, Screenplay, Frank Darabont
  • Genres: Crime, Drama, Fantasy
  • Actors: Tom Hanks, David Morse, Bonnie Hunt, Michael Clarke Duncan, James Cromwell, Michael Jeter, Graham Greene, Doug Hutchison, Sam Rockwell, Barry Pepper, Jeffrey DeMunn, Patricia Clarkson, Harry Dean Stanton

The Green Mile is a story told in flashback by an elderly Paul Edgecomb (Dabbs Greer, later by Tom Hanks in the younger version of the character) in a nursing home who is talking to his lady friend Elaine about the summer of 1935 when he was a corrections officer in charge of Death Row inmates in Louisiana’s Cold Mountain Penitentiary. His domain was called the “Green Mile” because the condemned prisoners walking to their execution are said to be walking “the last mile”; here it is on a stretch of green linoleum to the electric chair.

One day, a new inmate arrives, John Coffey (Michael Clarke Duncan), a 7-foot-tall black male convicted of raping and killing two young white girls. Upon being escorted to his cell, he immediately demonstrates “gentle giant” character traits: keeping to himself, fearing darkness, and being moved to tears on occasion. Soon enough, Coffey reveals extraordinary healing powers by healing Edgecomb’s urinary tract infection and resurrecting a mouse. Later, he would heal the terminally ill wife of Warden Hal Moores (James Cromwell), who suffered from a large brain tumor. When Coffey is asked to explain his power, he merely says that he “took it back.”

In the present, Edgecomb’s friend questions his statement that he had a fully-grown son in 1935. He explains that he was 44 years old at the time of Coffey’s execution and that he is now 108 and still in excellent health. This is apparently a side effect of the life-giving power of Coffey’s touch: a significantly lengthened lifespan. Mr. Jingles, Del’s mouse resurrected by Coffey, is also still alive — but Edgecomb believes his outliving all of his relatives and friends to be a punishment from God for having Coffey executed. Edgecomb explains he has deep thoughts about how “we each owe a death; there are no exceptions; but, Oh God, sometimes the Green Mile seems so long.”