Check It Out!

Staff recommendations and reviews from the Plainfield Public Library


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The Dark Tower

Roland (Idris Elba), the world’s last Gunslinger, is on a relentless quest to find the Man in Black (Matthew McConaughey). The Man in Black wants to destroy the Dark Tower, which holds the universe together, and would enable him to take over. As Roland fights against the Man in Black and other dark forces, he is joined by Jake (Tom Taylor), a young boy from New York City who ends up in Roland’s world. The two forge a friendship as they make their way to the Tower, where they will face the ultimate battle – good vs. evil.

Ok, I know. How in the world could they possibly wrap the entire Dark Tower series into a neat little 95 minute package? Well, they can’t, and they didn’t. As a rabid fan of the series, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when it came to the movie. But I went to the theater with an open mind, and I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. No, it isn’t an exact adaptation that follows the book word for word. Woven throughout the film are bits and pieces from the whole series of books, and while we don’t meet the whole ka-tet in this film, the time that we spend with Roland and Jake helps us to get to know them a little better in the limited time frame of the film. If you take the movie as kind of an introduction to the world of the Dark Tower, you’ll definitely enjoy it a lot more. The action is great, the effects are awesome, and Matthew McConaughey’s Man in Black alone is well worth the price of admission. Rated PG-13.

 

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Everything, Everything

Maddy has just turned 18 and has never been outside. She has a rare disease were her immune system is basically non-existent.  Her dad and brother died in a car accident when Maddy was a baby, so it is just Maddy and her mom. But everything changes when Olly moves in next door.

This movie is based on the book by the same title by Nicola Yoon. I did not read the book but I did enjoy the movie. It was a good story with likable characters. Rated PG-13


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The Circle

Mae (Emma Watson) is in a boring dead end job. Her best friend, Annie (Karen Gillan), works for a company in the tech world known as the Circle. Annie gets Mae an interview and the next thing she knows she has an exciting new job. At first she is overwhelmed, but she soon excels. She also agrees to transparency. She begins to live stream her entire life. But when a tragic death occurs, Mae starts to rethink everything she knew about this company.

This movie was just okay for me. I did not read the book so I cannot compare the two but I have heard the book is a whole lot better. I didn’t like the characters and there definitely wasn’t enough of John Boyega. Also starring, Tom Hanks, Bill Paxton, and Patton Oswalt. Rated PG-13


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Before I Fall

Sam and her three friends are the most popular girls at school.  After leaving a party, the girls get in a car wreck. When Sam wakes up she thinks maybe it was all a dream but soon realizes that she is reliving the same day all over again. Not sure what is happening she doesn’t change anything and needs up in the car accident again. Sam wakes up again and it is the same day again. Determined to change her future, Sam starts to slowly change. After a week, Sam might finally have figured it out.

For the most part I enjoyed this movie. I did not like the ending. But other than that it was a pretty good movie. It is based on the book by Lauren Oliver, which I did not read. Starring, Zoey Deutch, Jennifer Beals, and Halston Sage. Rated PG-13


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My Life as a Zucchini

Following the death of his mother, nine-year-old Zucchini is befriended by a kind police officer. After being taken to a foster home, Zucchini meets other orphans his age, and although he has a hard time fitting in at first, soon the kids have formed a tight-knit little family of their own.

Based on the novel “Autobiographie d’une Courgette” by Gilles Paris, and nominated for an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature, it’s easy to see why this film has become such a favorite. The art and animation are beautifully rendered, and the story, while sad, is also filled with hope, courage and humor. The American version of this film features the voice talents of Nick Offerman, Amy Sedaris, Will Forte, and Ellen Page. Rated PG-13.


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The Shack

Mack Phillips (Sam Worthington) is lost in his life.  While on a camping trip with his three kids, his youngest was kidnapped and murdered.  Now he is barely functioning and is mad at God. When his wife takes the kids to visit her parents, Mack finds a note in the mailbox. It tells him to go to the cabin where his daughter was murdered. Mack is convinced it is from the killer and goes. But when he arrives, no one is there. He rages and breaks things and knocks himself out. And then nothing is ever the same again.

I didn’t really know what to expect since I didn’t read the book. I enjoyed this movie. It did drag a little bit for me in the middle but overall this is a pretty good movie. Also starring, Octavia Spencer, Tim McGraw, and Radha Mitchell.  Rated PG-13

 


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Fifty Shades Darker

Ana Steel (Dakota Johnson) and Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan) are back and hotter than ever. We start the movie with Ana and Christian still broken up and both are miserable. But when Christian shows up at Jose’s photography show, Anna agrees to have dinner with him. As they talk, Christian agrees to throw out all of the rules and have a normal relationship with Ana.

Ana is happy. She is working her dream job at a publishing house and has Christian back. The only thing is that a girl keeps appearing who looks similar to Ana. Christian soon realizes that it is Leila (Bella Heathcote), a previous submissive who is having issues since  her boyfriend died in a car accident. And lets not forgot Mrs. Robinson (Kim Basinger). She finally makes an appearance and it does not go over well. Will Ana and Christian be able to maneuver through this new relationship or is it doomed before they even start?

I don’t care what anyone says, I like these movies and books. This one follows the book pretty well and I enjoyed it. The last one, Fifty Shades Freed, hits theaters in February 2018. Also starring, Marcia Gay Harden, Eloise Mumford, Rita Ora, Luke Grimes, and Max Martini. Rated R