pixels  I admit, after watching this movie, I do not know if anyone that was born after 1985 would enjoy this movie.  Maybe they would if they like to play old arcade games when they come across one.  But playing an arcade version of Pac Man at Happy Joes is nothing like going to an actual arcade and being surrounded by various games and players. But I digress.

If you do remember going to the arcade and playing games such as Donkey Kong you will find the movie Pixels enjoyable.  No, it will not win any Oscars but it is a fun movie to watch.  Starring Adam Sandler, Peter Dinklage, Kevin James and Josh Gad, this fearless foursome were the some of the top arcade game players back in the day.  The movie opens in 1982 with Brenner and Eddie facing off for the championship.  At the time, a time capsule is launched into space containing various things including video games.

Fast forward to the present year.  Aliens attack a U.S. military base in Guam.  The attack came from creatures that looked similarly to the old video game Galaga.  Cooper is the current President of the United States and he calls his old friend Brenner for help.  The aliens have sent messages to Earth. They received the time capusle from 1982 and they viewed it as a declaration of war.  The aliens have sent video games in the form of pixels to attack Earth.  In order to survive, Earth has to win three rounds of classic video game attacks.  A second attack happens at the Taj Mahal in India before the U.S. is able to react.

Brenner and Ludlow train a group of soldiers to fight the video games.  The key to defeating the game is knowing the pattern.  When a third attack happens in London, the soldiers, Brenner and Ludlow fight off the alien video game version of Centipede. Even the soldiers tried, it is Brenner and Ludlow that save the day.  The fourth game is in New York City and the game is Pac Man.  In order to defeat this game, they are going to need four ghosts.  This is where Peter Dinklage comes into the movie.  The fourth ghost is played by Pac Man creator Toru Iwatani.  Watching a giant Pac Man chomp down the streets of New York is a visual experience I never expected to see.  Eventually Pac Man is defeated until the aliens send a message that one of the ghosts cheated.

The next attack is in Washington, D.C.  And this time, it is not just one game.  It is ALL the video game characters attacking Earth.  For Earth to win, the game Donkey Kong has to be defeated.  Even President Cooper joins the action and fights the aliens.

Before you watch Pixels, you should watch the documentary, The King of Kong: a Fistful of Quarters.  Unemployed school teacher Steve Wiebe has a Donkey Kong, Jr arcade game.  He spendkongs a lot of time playing it.  He looks up the high score for Donkey Kong, and thinks to himself that he can beat that score.  So Steve Wiebe goes after Billy Mitchell’s high score for Donkey Kong.  You may think that no movie about a Donkey Kong score could be interesting to watch.  But you would be wrong.  Apparently, those high scores still matter to a lot of people.  It is an intense experience watching Wiebe go after the high score.  I mention this documentary because you will quickly notice the similarities between these characters and the main characters in Pixels.


November 5

white house downWhite House Down – Channing Tatum, Jamie Foxx

Capitol Policeman John Cale has just been denied his dream job with the Secret Service of protecting President James Sawyer. Not wanting to let down his little girl with the news, he takes her on a tour of the White House, when the complex is overtaken by a heavily armed paramilitary group. Now, with the nation’s government falling into chaos and time running out, it’s up to Cale to save the president, his daughter, and the country. Rated PG-13

grown ups 2Grown Ups 2 – Adam Sandler, Chris Rock

Lenny has decided to relocate his family back to the small town to have his kids grow up where he and his friends grew up. This time around, the grownups are the ones learning lessons from their kids on a day notoriously full of surprises: the last day of school. Rated PG-13

parklandParkland – Zac Efron, Marcia Gay Harden

November 22, 1963 is a day that changed the world forever when beloved American President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas. Parkland is the true story behind that tragic day, told from the vantage point of individuals who are forced to make split-second decisions after this incomprehensible event that will change the world’s landscape forever. Rated PG-13

reniorRenoir – Michel Bouquet, Christa Theret

Set on the French Riviera in the summer of 1915, Jean Renoir – son of the Impressionist painter Pierre-Auguste – returns home to convalesce after being wounded in World War I. At his side is Andree, a young woman who rejuvenates, enchants, and inspires both father and son. Renoir locates a fascinating moment of change, with one century’s way of thinking giving way to the next.  Rated R


man of steelMan of Steel – Henry Cavill, Amy Adams

A young boy learns that he has extraordinary powers and is not of this Earth. As a young man, he journeys to discover where he came from and what he was sent here to do. But the hero in him must emerge if he is to save the world from annihilation and become the symbol of hope for all mankind. Rated PG-13

turboTurbo – Ryan Reynolds, Paul Giamatti

After a freak accident, a garden snail with dreams of becoming the fastest snail in the world might just realize his goal.



PlanesPlanes – Dane Cook, Val Kilmer

Dusty is a cropdusting plane with dreams of competing as a high-flying air racer. But Dusty’s not exactly built for racing, and he happens to be afraid of heights. So he turns to a seasoned naval aviator, who helps Dusty qualify to take on the defending champ of the race circuit. Dusty’s courage is put to the ultimate test. Rated PG

millersWe’re the Millers –  Jennifer Anniston, Jason Sudeikis

David is a pot dealer in need of a fake family to use as a cover story in order to smuggle drugs from Mexico into the U.S. He is in major debt with his supplier and is desperate for the money to pay him back. He hires a stripper to be his fake wife, a runaway as his pretend daughter, and a goofy counterfeit son. Antics and madcap adventure ensue as this faux-family attempts to cross the border with the loot. Rated R


red2Red 2 – Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren

Retired black-ops CIA agent Frank Moses rejoins his unlikely team of elite operatives for a global quest to track down a missing portable nuclear device. PG-13


ripdR.I.P.D. – Jeff Bridges, Ryan Reynolds

Two cops are dispatched by the Rest In Peace Department (R.I.P.D.) to protect and serve the living from increasingly destructive spirits hiding among the unsuspecting Earth. When they uncover a plot that could end life as we know it, the new partners have to turn grudging respect into top-notch teamwork to restore the cosmic balance-or watch the tunnel to the afterlife begin sending angry souls the very wrong way. Rated PG-13