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Thu, April 25

These films' heroes are small, but the box office was big




Minions (2015) - Sandra Bullock, Jon Hamm, Michael Keaton

Minions Stuart, Kevin and Bob are recruited by Scarlet Overkill, a super-villain who, alongside her inventor husband Herb, hatches a plot to take over the world ( I loved Despicable Me, and giving the Minions their own feature seemed like a bit of a stretch. Kids will love this film, no doubt, and even the adults might giggle every once in a while. I felt this film lacked the emotional depth of its predecessors.

Ant-Man (2015) - Paul Rudd, Michael Douglas, Corey Stoll, Evangeline Lilly

Armed with a super-suit with the astonishing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, cat burglar Scott Lang must embrace his inner hero and help his mentor,

Dr. Hank Pym, plan and pull off a heist that will save the world ( The Marvel Cinematic Universe is getting a little crowded, yet I'm more than happy to welcome Ant-Man into the fold. Paul Rudd is perfect for the part, and Marvel has done a stupendous job at building on its universe without requiring people to watch previous films to get involved in the movie. It'll be interesting to see how they add Rudd and Douglas into future films, but it's definitely refreshing to see a new superhero film that can take its time to build out a proper origin story.

The Transporter Refueled (2015) - Ed Skrein, Loan Chabanol, Ray Stevenson

In the south of France, former special-ops mercenary Frank Martin enters into a game of chess with a femme fatale and her three sidekicks who are looking for revenge against a sinister Russian kingpin ( I was sincerely hoping this franchise would die off in 2008 without Jason Statham taking point.


Ashley Bell - Dean Koontz (560 pages)

At 22, Bibi Blair's doctors tell her that she's dying. Two days later, she's impossibly cured. Fierce, funny, dauntless, she becomes obsessed with the idea that she was spared because she is meant to save someone else. Someone named Ashley Bell. This proves to be a dangerous idea. Searching for Ashley Bell, ricocheting through a Southern California landscape that proves strange and malevolent in the extreme, Bibi is plunged into a world of crime and conspiracy, following a trail of mysteries that become more sinister and tangled with every twisting turn. ( Early readers are saying this is one of Koontz's best novels, calling this book "strange" and "methodically paced." The novel straddles the line between horror and thriller, but Koontz has been doing that for most of his career.


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