Jeff Daniels

to serve as the primary means of visual identification at the top of the article dedicated to the work in question.

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs stars Ashton Kutcher as the title character, wait, no, that’s not right, that was 2013. Steve Jobs is the 2015 version of the film! While Kutcher did a phenomenal job (pun intended) portraying the mind behind Apple, he did not have the amazing team that this film has behind it. Steve Jobs stars Michael Fassbender, Magneto himself, as Steve Jobs, with Kate Winslet, Jeff Daniels, and Seth Rogen as Steve Wozniak in a film directed by Danny Boyle and written by Aaron Sorkin. Like I said, Kutcher didn’t have the team.

This film was plagued by all sorts of setbacks. Going into pre-production with David Fincher set to direct, and Christian Bale to play jobs, it hit its first set back with Fincher leaving. Then Bale decided to pass on the project. Boyle came in and wanted DiCaprio to star. Who eventually passed. Bale came back and accepted the role, then left the project months later. With Jessica Chastain, Ike Barinholtz, and Scarlett Johansson all vying for roles they all eventually dropped and passed. Sony then dropped the project all together and Universal picked it up with started negotiations with Natalie Portman to join the project. She then passed. Eventually its current cast was set and production was finally underway. I never thought the film was coming.

But now it is here, and by here I mean limited release here. It is only playing in I think 2 theaters here in Dallas. Last weekend it was just 4, 2 in New York and 2 in LA. So we have a little wider release this week, and then a full wide release will hit theaters October 23.

Question is, is did all the drama affect the movie? How is it? Well in going to tell you. Unlike its Kutcher counterpart that selected random event throughout Steve Jobs’ life, this film focuses on 3 events. 3 separate days. The days leading up to his 3 biggest announcements, and all the drama and planning that went on behind the scenes.

First off, yes, it is freaking amazing. At first I was bothered by Magneto playing Jobs. Because I did not see Jobs. I saw Fassbender. Almost with a little mixture of Robert Downey Jr. in there. I know, weird. But that’s all I could focus on. But as the film plays out, Fassbender begins to disappear. You get over it, and you can see Steve Jobs. In the performance. The character becomes too much to ignore and you forget about the actor, and you see a character. Not necessarily the person, but you see the character. And it is astonishing. This is another performance I would chalk up to the Best actor category. Not a winner, but a nominee.

Everyone else is incredible in their roles. Honestly, even though I knew it was Kate Winslet, She was immediately gone into the part. And Seth Rogen is little bit of his normal self, mixed in with a great performance. But the second nominee for this film is of course Jeff Daniels. Between the Martian and Steve Jobs that guy better take home the damn supporting actor statue. True story.

The way it is filmed is a work of art in and of itself. Danny Boyle perfectly adapts Sorkin’s script. Especially filming act 1 in 16 MM, Act 2 in 35 MM, and Act 3 in digital. As Jobs brings out the next evolution of technology, the film grows with you. It may sound like a gimmick, but it works in this instance perfectly. And Sorkin is at his best with this script. This is a walk and talk, dialog heavy film. And it flushes out every single character beautifully.

The only real negatives on the film would be the neatness that a few things get wrapped up. But in a film adaption that is going to happen. Especially with a project like this. But it still leaves the door open that maybe not everything is tied up perfectly, but perhaps settled for the time being.

Steve Jobs can become his own genre of film. While Jobs itself was not fantastic, it was entertaining for Kutchers performance. And now, this film is a remarkable top tier film. I’m giving it a Jeebus score of 4.2. Go out; go see it next week when it goes wide. But what say you Jackass Nation? Are you an Apple User? Did you enjoy Jobs? Are you excited for this film? Sound off in the comments below, and remember, it is what it is.

The Jeebus Score explained

The Jeebus score is out of a possible 6 points. Films are giving a max of 1 point each for Acting, Entertainment, and Casting, and a max of .5 for Dialog, Cinematography, and Direction. There is also a possible bonus up to .5. Any film between 2.5 and 4 is considered a good film. 4-5 is a great film. Anything over 5 is an incredibly amazing film. To get a perfect score of 6 a film will pretty much have to be The Empire Strikes Back or The Godfather.

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The Martian

It is only the first day of October but break out those Oscar conversations because we have our first contender of the season! But is it as good as they are making it out to be? It just might be! I just left the theater, where I was forced to see Ridley Scott’s new film in 3D, we all know how against 3D I am, but it was only showing I could make.

The Martian stars Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Jeff Daniels, Michael Pena, Kate Mara, Sean Bean (Spoiler alert: Sean Bean does not die!), Sebastian Stan, Aksel Hennie, and Chiwetel Ejiodor. The Drew Goddard script is directed by Ridley Scott who produces the film alongside of Simon Kinberg. The Martian is based on the bestselling novel of the same name written by Andy Weir. Premiering at the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival, it immediately sparked Oscar buzz not only for the film itself, but for Matt Damon’s performance.

\The Martian tells the tale of presumed dead astronaut Mark Watney (Damon) stranded alone on the hostile planet of Mars. With only a limited amount of supplies, he must find a way to survive until he can be rescued by a crew that he doesn’t even know if they know he is still alive.

Let me start off by saying, this film was freaking incredible. Every single aspect of it is beautiful. From the casting, to the story, to the direction. Not a single moment wasted. From beginning to end I was thoroughly entertained. Damn near on the edge of my seat. I laughed, I teared up, I was scared, and I cringed. Amazing.

Let’s start with Damon. Damon in his own right is a great actor. The guy can do it all. And this is his showcase. Being put in the position to carry the majority of a film, by you can be difficult, but Damon proves he was up to the task. All though the character is so well written, Damon brings him to life. He makes you connect with him; he makes you root for him, he makes you hurt for him. The optimism of the character could be done wrong if any someone else’s hands, but Damon brings the right amount of humor and intelligence and believability to the role. Leo has his work cut out for him, because Damon is in the hunt for the Oscar with this one.

The rest of the cast is filled with heavy hitters and great role players. Jeff Daniels reminds us that he is a premier actor with an incredible talent. Ejiodor in on par and holds his own. Kate Mara makes you forget she was in The Fantastic Four. Michael Pena is a riot and believable as always. From top to bottom this cast is stellar.

The story itself is really well done. It is a perfect blend of Cast Away and Apollo 13. While you are alone on Mars with Matt Damon, it switches back and forth to earth and the attempts and plans to save him. It is suspenseful, and incredibly funny. Not to mention it is so well told that I constantly had to remind myself it was not a true story. Just being real. Completely thought this was true once or twice while watching.

A definite return to form for one Ridley Scott. Who his own not been up to his own standards as of late, this one he really knocks it out of the park. The cinematography is beautiful. Every shot framed and centered perfectly with as much attention that can be paid to detail. There are times you think this was actually shot on Mars itself! Again, I know I had to remind myself that was not possible either…

As far as negatives go there honestly are not a lot. A small chunk near the beginning of the third acts takes you to the story on earth for a little longer then you would want. There is a moment between Kate Mara and Sebastian Stan’s characters that really felt a little out of place. And I guess I have to say another negative was that I saw it in 3D. While it was not bad 3D, I am just not a fan of it. I only chose the 3D format because it was the only showing available. I do not think the 3D added all that much to the film, it was just kind of there. So if you have the choice, you probably don’t need to bother with the 3D unless you just like 3D

But other than those rather nitpicky negatives, there is nothing bad I can say about this film. As of now, in my mind, it is the front runner for the Oscar. One for Damon, one for Scott, and one for the film itself. I scored it 4.8, with a .3 bonus for, well everything. That gives The Martian a Jeebus Score of 5.1. You guys deff need to check this one out. But what say you Jackass Nation? Are you excited for The Martian? What are your favorite Matt Damon performances? Sound off in the comments below, and remember, it is what it is. Keep on Nerding!

The Jeebus Score explained

The Jeebus score is out of a possible 6 points. Films are giving a max of 1 point each for Acting, Entertainment, and Casting, and a max of .5 for Dialog, Cinematography, and Direction. There is also a possible bonus up to .5. Any film between 2.5 and 4 is considered a good film. 4-5 is a great film. Anything over 5 is an incredibly amazing film. To get a perfect score of 6 a film will pretty much have to be The Empire Strikes Back or The Godfather.

Dumb & Dumber To

One of the greatest comedies of all time, a classic, Dumb & Dumber, is finally getting its sequel. Did it need one? Some say it did, some say leave it be. I personally was up for seeing these characters revisited. The Farrelly brothers return to direct Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels as the dimwitted yet good hearted duo of Lloyd and Harry return to go on a new adventure, 20 years after their original trip to Aspin Colorado. This time they are in search of Harry’s long lost daughter he never knew he had. The trailers have not hit home with me as much as I liked, but I had hoped that was only because they chose to do what other comedies do not, and hold the laughs off for the film. So did it work? Well, I’d say, eh. Kinda?

Let’s look at what they did right with the film. The best part of it, is revisiting these characters. As the film starts you are thrust back into this world with Harry and Lloyd and it’s almost like you never left. Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels jump back into these characters like they’ve been doing it for regularly for the past 20 years. Their interaction together is great. The chemistry between these two is unbelievable. Rob Riggle is really good in it too. I don’t know what it is about that guy, but I crack up anytime he walks on scene. Chandler’s dad (Kathleen Turner) is pretty functional as Friada Felcher, Harry’s long lost baby mama.

The Marketing department did a great job too, I did not watch any trailers after the first one they released, but they do a good job not showing their cards. The laughs hit hard, when they do. But there are stretches when they are trying to set up a joke that falls flat. But that is not to say the film is not hilarious. There were times that I was on the floor laughing, barely able to contain myself.

But there are definitely some issues with Dumb & Dumber To. While the first film, you weren’t watching it for the story, and this one is the same. The story itself is weak, and almost plot point the same as the first. The long lost daughter that they are on the search for could have been casted better. She was very one dimensional. And the third act the film really falls apart. It is not at all about what makes us want to see these films, what we want is Harry and Lloyd, and in the third act the film stops being about them and tries to be something else. The film could benefitted from another pass at the editing room too.

All in all, I am glad this film came out. It was fun to see these guys again bringing these iconic rolls roles back to the big screen. The cameos are fun, especially one you really have to pay attention to see, Chive On. When I went to score the film I gave it a 3.7, with a .2 bonus for Jim Carey and Jeff Daniels bringing these characters back to us. All together that gives Dumb & Dumber to a Jeebus score of 3.9, Check out the Matinee.