Zum Teufel mit der PenneReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Peter Alexander joins the school as a singing undercover reporter impersonating his brother in law, a Swiss teacher. As if Alexander's singing isn't enough, early in the film, back-then-superstar Heintje also has to sing about his mother. According to Wikipedia, Alexander also pushed for the change of the name Nietnagel to Notnagel, because he apparently liked it better. Hannelore Elsner, who played a French exchange student in the previous movie, comes back in this one as Pepe's sister Marion instead. Compared with the rest of the series, this one isn't as fun.
Black SeaReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Looking at the cover or movie poster, you would think that it involves a modern submarine, but that's a bit misleading. There are a couple of plot twists that I appreciate, but in the end, I would have liked a better outcome. The story is engaging and it's well made. It's good action entertainment with a somewhat unbelievable plot.
Bonnie and ClydeReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
One of those classic movies that's you're just supposed to watch. However, I wasn't too impressed. Bonnie, Clyde and their gang killed police officers and civilians while robbing banks and stores but this movie shows them as a misunderstood couple who just wants to some fun and police is getting in their way. In addition, the interactions between Clyde and his brother Buck getting back together can't possibly have been as silly as are shown. But the movie serves one good purpose: it at least sent me over to Wikipedia to read more about the real story.
The FounderReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Who knows how much the real Ray Kroc was like the one as portrayed in this biopic. From what I read, the McDonald brothers in the end might really have felt quite as ripped off as this movie shows. In any case, as shown here, there's not much to like about Kroc, who as a sleazy businessman is only out to make a profit and leave in his wake whoever he considers as being in his way. Michael Keaton is really good as Kroc and it's easy to feel so immersed in the story that I want to just reach out and punch him when he schemes to rip off the McDonalds or he's mean to his wife.
The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Having watched the first movie, I decided to watch this second one as well. As before, it's again America Ferrera that stands out as the highlight in this one. There's more conflict between the characters, which I'm not a big fan of, but it all turns out alright after all. In the end, the pants are lost, so there probably won't be a third part, which I'm alright with.
Zur Hölle mit den PaukernReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
In this first part of the seven movie series, Pepe Nietnagel sends one of his teachers into the sanatorium. Watching the series of movies now, 50 years later, is a bit weird. School was never like that for me, and it was probably never like that even 50 years ago, but it's still entertaining to watch. Theo Lingen as the director of the school throughout the whole series is the highlight for me.
Uncovered: The War on IraqReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Looking at the ongoing chaos in the Middle East even today, this now-15-year-old documentary summarizes nicely how the war on Iraq got started with manufactured evidence about weapons of mass destruction. It's a nice reminder that even in a democracy as the United States, a determined administration doesn't need much to get a war started if it serves their interests. Something to keep in mind especially now when the Trump administration does everything it can to find a reason to start a war with Iran.
Finding ForresterReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
A heartwarming story about aging, reclusive author William Forrester who befriends promising student Jamal Wallace. While their backgrounds are completely different, they find common ground in writing. And while at first, it looks like only Wallace is benefitting from this friendship, Forrester gets to come out of his reclusion and deal with old family trauma. I thoroughly enjoyed watching this.
The Time MachineReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
Changing the past, even when owning a time machine, seems to be more difficult than it first appears to its inventor Alexander Hartdegen. So instead, he travels 800 thousand years into the post-apocalyptic future. There, he's lending a hand to a hand to the Eloi, who are regularly hunted by the subterranean morlocks. Luckily, one of the Eloi is an English teacher, so she's the only one who can effortlessly communicate with the time traveller. Overall, it's all a bit over the top silly, and besides the impressive, Oscar-nominated makeup of the morlocks, not much about it is memorable.
The Butterfly Effect 2Reviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
I have watched the first Butterfly Effect and thought it was an interesting idea and (a bit surprisingly) good acting by Ashton Kutcher. Overall, the box office performance of the first movie must have convinced the studio that a second movie was required and they went to work on this second part. Somewhere along the way, they must have realized that it wasn't such a good idea and they released it straight to video. None of the acting is convincing and for me, the only reason to watch the thing to the end is that I didn't have anything better to do that evening.
Christopher RobinReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
While I knew about Winnie The Pooh as a child, I was never really much into it, so besides knowing that it involves a bear, a tiger, a donkey and a little boy, that's about the extend of it. This movie is a partly live-action, partly computer-animated movie about a grown-up Christopher Robin, who just about forgot all of his childhood fantasy world. He's got little patience for his daughter and spending too much of his time on his career and not on his family. As can be guessed because it's a Disney movie, all of this turns around by the end of the movie and all is good. Overall, it's pretty light entertainment that doesn't leave a lasting impression.
MilkReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
I wasn't around in San Francisco in the 1970s, but this movie is done so well that I feel as part of it. Knowing that Harvey Milk is going to die in the end (I hope I didn't just spoil this true story for anybody) does not take away from the dread that's building up knowing what's about to happen when Dan White enters his office. Sean Penn does such a great job portraying Milk that it's easy to forget that it isn't a documentary.
Crazy Rich AsiansReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
A very endearing story reminiscent of a Bollywood movie, but placed in Singapore. It's not a complicated story and not difficult to understand, but highly entertaining, beautifully filmed in Singapore with great actors that are just great fun to watch. It's the kind of movie that I can see myself watching again at some time.
The Deer HunterReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
A highly rated movie, considered to be a classic in many lists. I was a bit less impressed. At a bit more than three hours, it does feel a bit like the story drags a little bit, despite the convincing performances by Robert De Niro and Christopher Walken.
Earth Girls Are EasyReviewer: Ruben Schönefeld
A somewhat early role for Jim Carrey, who together with buff Jeff Goldblum crashes their spaceship into Valerie's (swimsuit-clad Geena Davis) backyard pool. With how goofy this movie is, it's not very important that it does not shine with top-notch special effects. Some of the issues that a bigger budget may have been able to figure out have been very originally solved, as for example with the size of the spaceship that fits perfectly into the swimming pool, but in order for that to work, the characters going in and out have to be resized. Overall, it's a cute movie with a rather predictable love-story and happy ending, but not something I need to watch again.