Week 1 of 2019 (1/1 – 1/6)


So far, the 2019 Movie Challenge has started off strong! Here are the films I have watched so far:

1/1Actor For Hire2015
1/2Power Rangers2017
1/3Despicable Me 32015
1/4Killing Gunther2017
1/5Castles in the Sky2014
1/6Destination Wedding2018

January 1

So, to kick off this 2019 movie challenge, I watched this little film that’s been in my queue for quite a while now called Actor for Hire. It’s not a bad movie overall, although the first 20 minutes are ridiculously painful to watch. Definitely a film for insiders to appreciate (esp. actors)!

January 2

Day 2 of my 2019 film challenge! I watched 2017’s Power Rangers and enjoyed it more than I expected to.

I was starting college when the original Power Rangers TV series premiered and had a lot of fun watching it back then, cheese and all. And while I’m still not a fan of “gritty” reboots of things I enjoyed as a kid, overall this was not a bad addition to an eternally long lineup of “teenagers with attitude”. Worth the nostalgia.

January 3

For Day 3 of my 2019 Movie Challenge, I watched Despicable Me 3.

Not a high bar here to get over, but I enjoyed it, albeit less than the original or the Minions spin-off. I look at this franchise at this point a little like the Austin Powers movies — great for a laugh or five, but the sequels just can’t match the novelty of the original. Still, a solid movie worth seeing… heck, make a day out of it with the kids and watch ’em all!

January 4

Day 4 of my 2019 Movie Challenge!

I watched 2017’s Killing Gunther. This was written, directed and starred Taran Killam from Saturday Night Live. A solid first directing job. While it’s not a great film, it made me genuinely laugh in some places and I liked how silly the end was.

(SPOILER ALERT: Schwarzenegger is the “Gunther” of the title and he’s only in the last 20 minutes of the movie.)

January 5

Day 5 of my 2019 Movie Challenge! I watched Castles in the Sky, a BBC dramatization of Britain’s efforts to develop radar just before the start of World War II.

You don’t often see Eddie Izzard in a dramatic role, and he did a terrific job here. It was a well-paced movie, but I often felt that the story lacked a depth to the characters overall. WWII-based films are always interesting to me, but I would have liked more to see the effect that these efforts to had on their lives. You see a few glimpses of it in the film, but there seems like a lot was left out. A rare circumstance where a film could have actually been longer. But still a story I was curious about and now I know something new!

January 6

Day 6 of the 2019 Movie Challenge brings us 2018’s Destination Wedding starring Keanu Reeves and Winona Ryder.

Yes, it’s a silly romantic comedy, but I laughed all the way through it. The two of them have been friends for decades in real life and it shows in the movie, helping them carry the film as the only two speaking characters in the whole thing. I enjoyed it!

Not a bad start! I was fortunate in that I had a number of extra days off here at the end of last year. I didn’t have to return to my day job until January 3rd, so I had plenty of time to start mapping out how I’m going to watch all these movies. As I said in my New Year’s Day post, I suspect there will be some days where it will more difficult to watch something new every day. Thankfully, I have time while working on my day job (not to mention a lenient boss in that aspect!) to fit in a movie every day. On the plus side, it will also force me to cut back on a lot of TV watching to make room for this challenge. That’s a good thing… as much as I love the shows I watch, it’s a huge time investment every week when I should be focused on other things!

Anyway, out of the movies I watched this week, I thought that Destination Wedding was the best of them. The deadpan comedy aspect of it, as well as starring two longtime friends who have great onscreen chemistry, made a surprisingly fun film. There are certainly aspects that I enjoyed in the other movies, but this one was definitely the most solid overall.