Check It Out!

Staff recommendations and reviews from the Plainfield Public Library

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The Take

Michael Mason (Richard Madden) is a con artist, currently working in Paris. He makes his living picking pockets, taking special orders from his clients. When he steals a bag containing a teddy bear, and not much else, he tosses it. Moments later, the bag explodes, leaving 4 people dead. The next day, Michael’s face, captured on CCTV, is all over the news as a suspect. The CIA assigns agent Sean Briar (Idris Elba) to the case. Briar, never one to play by the rules, captures Michael, but instead of taking him in, takes him to a secret interrogation spot, where he finds out that Michael is indeed telling the truth. Now, they’re not only on the run from the group responsible for the attack, but they’re also trying to track them down before they strike again.

As far as action and suspense go, this movie was pretty good. And while I love both Idris and Richard, unfortunately, as hard as they tried, the chemistry just wasn’t there. I just wasn’t buying into their comic/straight guy routine. Other than that though, definitely worth watching. Rated R. Also featuring Kelly Reilly and Charlotte Le Bon.

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Murder on the Orient Express

Daisy Armstrong was kidnapped and murdered in 1930. Of the two kidnappers only one was brought to justice. Five years later, Hercule Poirot (Albert Finney) finds himself on the train, Orient Express. He is headed back to England for a case and was able to secure last minute passage on the train. While on the train a fellow passage, Ratchett (Richard Widmark), asks Poirot to be his bodyguard. Poirot declines and the next day Ratchett is found dead in his cabin. Now it is up to Poirot to solve the murder before the train arrives and the murderer gets away.

I am a big fan of Agatha Christie and this is a great movie to go along with the book. It is fun trying to guess who did it and even more fun when you find out. This one is being remade with Johnny Depp, Kenneth Branagh, Daisy Ridley, Michelle Pfeiffer, Josh Gad, and Penelope Cruz. It will be out this November.

Also starring, Sean Connery, Vanessa Redgrave, Lauren Bacall, Ingrid Bergman, Anthony Perkins, and Michael York. Rated PG

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Wedding Planner Mystery

Carnegie Kincaid (Erica Durance) is a struggling wedding planner. She is trying to keep the business afloat,  and knows that pulling off her friend’s wedding will go a long way in helping her business. Unfortunately, during the rehearsal, after an argument, one of her bridesmaids gets into her cousin’s car and has a fatal crash.  What started out as a simple accident turns out to be an attempted murder.

With the cops looking at her and her business on the line, Carnegie decides to start looking into the murder. With many unanswered question about some family business, Carnegie is having trouble adding it all up.  To top it off,  Aaron Gold (Andrew Walker), an annoying investigative reporter keeps showing up. On the other hand, the families handsome lawyer is taking an interest in her. With so much on the line can Carnegie solve the murder and give her friend the wedding of her dreams?

I loved the characters in this movie, and even though I always feel that they could build up the characters more, I feel they did a wonderful job.  If you are looking for a family fun mystery, this is the movie for you.  Rated TV-PG, Hallmark Movie Original.


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Michèle is at home letting her cat in when a masked man pushes his way into her house and assaults and rapes her. Michèle doesn’t report the attack and carries on with her life as though nothing has happened. She slowly starts suspecting her co-worker might be her attacker but doesn’t have proof. Then she starts to receive texts from the intruder. Now more suspicion, Michèle turns to her married neighbor for comfort. But when the intruder comes back, will Michèle get her revenge?

This was a very intense, keep you guessing kind of movie. I can see why Isabelle Huppert won the Golden Globe for Best Actress. I think I liked this movie. I am still trying to decide! And I am not sure I even liked Michèle. But if you like a good thriller and don’t mind reading subtitles, then I would recommend this one. Rated R

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Central Intelligence

ciCalvin Joyner was the big man on campus in high school. He was known as the “Golden Jet”. While they were still in high school, and during a ceremony in the auditorium, Robbie Weirdicht is thrown into the auditorium completely naked. No one helps him…that is no one but Calvin. Fast forward 20 years to a few days before the class reunion. Calvin is married and works as an accountant. His life changes when he is contacted by Robbie…who happens to be a CIA agent…who just happens to be on the run and brings Calvin along for the ride.

The movie starred Dwayne Johnson as Robbie Weirdicht/Bob Stone, Kevin Hart as Calvin Joyner, Amy Ryan as Agent Pamela Harris and Danielle Nicolet as Maggie.

Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart work great with each other. There were a lot of funny moments throughout the movie. I felt that it could have used a few more action scenes in some ways. However, since it is an action comedy movie less action scenes does make sense. Overall it was an okay movie. Rated PG-13

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Green Room

greenPat and his band are traveling home from the west coast back to the east coast. Before they head out they have a last-minute gig. It is in a secluded area and the club is run by a gang of skinheads. They need the money and decide to play anyway. However, after their set, they witness a murder. Now they are being held against their will. They try to escape but one by one they get killed. Will anyone survive?

This was just alright for me. I was a little sad since it was one of Anton Yelchin’s last films. And I was surprised to see Patrick Stewart as the bad guy. I would recommend it if you have nothing else to watch. Rated R

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The Hateful Eight

hateful 8Picture a disparate group of people, trapped together in a blizzard. You’re not sure that anyone is really who they say they are, and somewhere down the line, there’s poison involved. Sounds like one of those cozy 1940’s mansion mysteries, right? You might be right, except that this is a Quentin Tarantino film, and the setting is Wyoming just after the Civil War, and our characters aren’t trapped in a mansion, but in a trading post in the middle of nowhere, and one of those characters is played by Samuel L. Jackson. Need I say more?

I have to admit, Tarantino kind of lost me a few films ago, but I think this one is going on my new faves list. I really admire the fact that even though there are a lot of similarities in his movies, you can tell that he’s a lover of movies and he’s not afraid to pay homage to his favorites while also adding his own touches. As always, expect lots of violence, adult language, and lots of blood. Rated R. Also featuring Kurt Russell, Bruce Dern, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tim Roth, Micheal Madsen, and Channing Tatum.