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2009 Movie Reviews


Tanning Stars:



3/Pale Tan 


5/Golden Bronze (must watch)


Angels & Demons was directed by Ron Howard, produced by Ron Howard, Brian Grazer and John Calley and written by Dan Brown (novel). The film was distributed by Columbia Pictures and released on May 14, 2009. It starred Tom Hanks, Ewan McGregor, Ayelet Zurer, Stellen Skarsgård, Pierfrancesco Favino, Nikolaj Lie Kaas and Armin Mueller-Stahl.

Rated: 5/Golden Bronze

Writer’s Comment: Tom Hanks does an outstanding performance, again. The movie was riveting.

Away We Go was directed by Sam Mendes, written by Dave Eggers and Vendela Vida. It was distributed by Focus Features and released on June 5, 2009. The film stars John Krasinski, Maya Rudolph, Jeff Daniels, Carmen Ejogo, Jim Gaffigan, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Josh Hamilton, Allison Janney, Melanie Lynskey, Chris Messina, Catherine O’Hara and Paul Scheider.

Rated: 4/Tan

Writer’s Comment: This film is hilarious and witty and different enough to make it a must see.

Confessions of a Shopaholic was directed by P. J. Hogan and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. The film was written by novels of Sophie Kinsella’s. It was distributed by Touchtone Pictures and released on February 13, 2009. It starred Isla Fisher, Hugh Dancy, Krysten Ritter, John Goodman, Joan Cusack, John Lithgow, Leslie Bibb and Julie Hagerty.

Rated: 3/Pale Tan

Writer’s Comments: The movie is full of foolish, ridiculous situations with witty dialogue and humor.

Couples Retreat was directed by Peter Billingsley, produced by Scott Stuber and written by Jon Favreau, Vince Vaughn and Dana Fox. It was distributed by Universal Pictures and released on October 9, 2009. The movie stars Vince Vaughn, Jason Batemen, Jon Favreau, Faizon Love, Kristen Bell, Malin Akerman, Kristin Davis, Kali Hawk, Tasha Smith, Peter Serafinowicz, Carlos Ponce and Jean Reno.

Rated: 4/Tan

Writer’s Comment: Perfect place for sun tanning with the picturesque tropical paradise setting.

Duplicity was directed by Tony Gilroy, produced by Laura Bickford, Jennifer Fox, John Gilroy and Kerry Orent and written by Tony Gilroy. The film was distributed by Universal Pictures and released on March 20, 2009. The stars included Clive Owen, Julie Roberts, Tom Wilkinson and Paul Giamatti.

Rated: 2/Pink

Writer’s Comment: I love the stars in this movie, but I thought it was confusing at times and if love and lust were between them, it was hard to find. The scenery was so tremendous, it makes you want to be there under the sun on the beach sunbathing.

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince was directed by David Yates, produced by David Heyman, David Barron and written by Steve Kloves – based on the novel by  J. K. Rowling. The film was distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures and released on July 15, 2009. The movie starred Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Michael Gambon, Jim Broadbent, Alan Rickman, Tom Felton and Helena Bonham Carter.

Rated: 4/Tan

Writer’s Comments: I thoroughly enjoy this series of movies with great stars and the dramatic scenes, including the cave and the shocking twist in the final chapter were well done.

He’s Just Not That Into You was directed by Ken Kwapis, produced by Drew Barrymore and Nancy Juvonen and written by Greg Behrendt, Liz Tuccillo, Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein. It was distributed by New Line Cinema and released on February 6, 2009. The stars were Ginnifer Goodwin, Jennifer Aniston, Jennifer Connelly, Justin Long, Ben Affleck, Drew Barrymore, Kevin Connolly, Bradley Cooper, Scarlett Johansson and Kris Kristofferson.

Rated: 3/Pale Tan

Writer’s Comment: I admit I didn’t get to see the movie in the theaters when it came out, but I figured with such a great cast of characters I needed the dvd. I was disappointed. I found it beneath the actors’ skills, depressing and boring.

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs was directed by Carlos Saldanha, co-directed by Michael Thurmeier, produced by Michael Berg, Peter Ackerman, Mike Reiss and Yoni Brenner. The firm was distributed by 20th Century Fox and released on July 1, 2009. This animated movie stars Ray Romano, Queen Latifah, Denis Leary, John Leguizamo, Seann William Scott, Josh Peck, Simon Pegg, Chris Wedge and Karen Disher.

Rated: 5/Golden Bronze

Writer’s Comments: Best of the three in this series. This is a very entertaining and funny movie, especially loved how the relationship between the animals has transformed to being even closer to one another. Definitely not an under the sun movie, in fact I could not imagine what getting a tan or bronzed back then would be, but definitely a great family flick!


I Love You, Man was directed by John Hamburg, produced by Donald De Line and John Hamburg and written by John Hamburg and Larry Levin. The film was distributed by DreamWorks Pictures and released on March 20, 2009. It stars Paul Rudd, Jason Segel, Rashida Jones, J. K. Simmons, Jane Curtin, Jaime Pressly and Andy Samberg.

Rated: 3/Light Tan

Writer’s Comment: Definitely a man’s ‘must see’ movie. It provides lots sarcasm, wit and a lot of laughter. (I liked it, too!)

Knowing was directed by Alex Proyas, produced by Todd Black, Jason Blumenthal and Steve Tisch and written by Ryne Doulas Pearson, Alex Proyas, Stuart Hazeldine, Juliet Snowden and Stiles White. It was distributed by Summit Entertainment and released on March 20, 2009.

Rated: 4/Tan

Writer’s Comments: There are many movies that tell of the earth’s ending, but I believe Knowing takes on a whole new prospective. I was entertained by the intense excitement and uplifted in the end.

Monsters vs. Aliens was directed by Conrad Vernon and Rob Letterman, produced by Lisa Stewart; co-produced by Jill Hopp and Latifa Ouaou. It was written by Maya Forbes, Wallace Wolodarski, Rob Letterman, Jonathan Aibel, Glenn Berger and Conrad Vernon. The film was distributed by DreamWorks Animation and released on March 27, 2009.

Rated: 2/Pink

Writer’s Comments: The movie is somewhat funny with action but the plot is predictable and boring.

My Life in Ruins was directed by Donald Petrie, produced by Michelle Chydzik, Nathalie Marciano; with executive producers: Tom Hanks, Rita Wilson and Gary Goetzman. It was written by Mike Reiss and Nia Vardalos. The film was distributed by Fox Searchlight Pictures and released on May 7, 2009. It stars Nia Vardalos, Richard Dreyfuss, Alexis Georgoulis and Harland Williams.

Rated: 4/Tan

Writer’s Comments: This is an enjoyable movie that takes place in Greece. The characters are funny and the sunny scenery is spectacular especially by the water.

New in Town was directed by Jonas Elmer, produced by Peter Safran, Darryl Taja, Tracey E. Edmonds, Paul Brooks, Phyllis Laing and Andrew Paquin. The film was distributed by Lions Gate Entertainment and released on January 30, 2009. The movie stars Renée Zellweger, Harry Connick, Jr., Siobhan Fallon, J.K. Simmons and Frances Conroy.

Rated: 3/Pale Tan

Writer’s Comment: Been there, seen that. If it weren’t for the humor in the movie and the good acting, I’d have to rate it a 2. Great snow scenes... and remember if you are out in the snow for whatever reason, please remember to use a good moisturizer and some organic sunscreen or suntan lotion because you can still get a suntan!

Race to Witch Mountain was directed by Andy Fickman, produced by Andrew Gunn, Mario Iscovich and Ann Marie Sanderlin, written by Andy Fickman, Mark Bomback and Walt Disney Pictures and released on March 13, 2009. The movie stars Dwayne Johnson, AnnaSophia Robb, Carla Gugino, Ciarán Hinds, Alexander Ludwig, Tom Everett Scott and Chris Marquette.

Rated: 3/Pale Tan

Writer’s Comments: The movie was entertaining, but predictable. Also a remake from the 1970's, but maybe that is why it was predictable.

Star Trek was directed by J.J. Abrams, produced by J.J. Abrams and Damon Lindelof and written by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman. The film was distributed by Paramount Pictures and released on May 8, 2009. The movie stars Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Leonard Nimoy, Karl Urban, Zoe Saldaña, Simon Pegg, John Cho, Anton Yelchin, Eric Bana, Bruce Greenwood, Ben Cross, Winona Ryder, Clifton Collins, Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Jennifer Morrison, Rachel Nichols, Faran Tahir, Deep Roy and Greg Ellis.

Rated: 5/Golden Bronze

Writer’s Comment: First of all, I’m a Star Trek fan. The movie keeps you entertained from the opening to the end. Great acting and great affects.

State of Play was directed by Kevin Macdonald, produced by Andrew Hauptman, Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner and was written by Matthew Michael Carnahan, Tony Gilroy, Peter Morgan, Billy Ray and Paul Abbott. The film was distributed by Universal Pictures and released on April 17, 2009. The movie stars Russell Crowe, Ben Affleck, Rachel McAdams, Helen Mirren, Robin Wright Penn, Jason Bateman, Jeff Daniels and Viola Davis.

Rated: 5/Golden Bronze

Writer’s Comments: This is a wonderful suspense thriller that deals with a dying newspaper and political corruption. 

Taken was directed by Pierre Morel, produced by Luc Besson, written by Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen. The film was distributed by 20th Century Fox and released on January 30, 2009. The movie stars Liam Neeson, Famke Janssen, Maggie Grace, Xander Berkeley, Holly Valance and Katie Cassidy.

Rated: 5:/Golden Bronze

Writer’s Comments: Liam’s character, Bryan Mills portrays a weak, uncomfortable man with family life kind of guy in the beginning of the movie. What a surprise when Bryan is able to accomplish what he needs to do ruthlessly and expertly.


The Informant was directed by Steven Soderbergh, produced by Gregory Jacobs, Jennifer Fox, Michael Jaffe, Howard Braunstein and Kurt Eichenwald and written by Scott Z. Burns, novel by Kurt Eichenwald. (Narrated by Matt Damon). The film was distributed by Warner Bros. and released on September 18, 2009. The movie stars  Matt Damon, Joel McHale and Melanie Lynskey.

Rated: 3/Pale Tan

Writer’s Comment: This is based on a true story about an executive in the early 90s who blew the whistle on his company after his wife forced him into it. It was interesting but not as suspenseful as I would have thought.

The International was directed by Tom Tykwer, produced by Charles Roven, Richard and Lloyd Phillips, and written by Eric Singer. The film was distributed by Columbia Pictures and released on February 13, 2009. The movie stars Clive Owen, Naomi Watts and Armin Mueller-Stahl.    

Rated: 3/Pale Tan

Writer’s Comments: Owen and Watts were very good with their parts in this film, but the script short-changed them. Totally in the moment of the what's happenings of today's conspiracies.

The Ugly Truth was directed by Robert Luketic, produced by Katherine Heigl, Karen McCullah Lutz, Kirsten Smith and Tom Rosenberg and written by Nicole Eastman. The film was distributed by Columbia Pictures and released on July 24, 2009. The movie stars Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler.

Rated: 4/Tan

Writer’s Comment: This movie can get very ‘raunchy’, but it is also hilarious. This is a true romantic comedy and totally funny. Ms. Heigl needs a little spray tan though to match the hot Mr. Butler.

The Proposal was directed by Anne Fletcher, produced by Todd Lieberman, David Hoberman, Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci and Kristin Burr and was written by Pete Chiarelli. The film was distributed by Touchstone Pictures and released on June 18, 2009. The movie stars Sandra Bullock, Ryan Reynolds, Malin Akerman, Mary Steenburgen, Craig T. Nelson, Betty White, Oscar Nuñez and Aasif Mandvi.

Rated: 5/Golden Bronze

Writer’s Comments: Margaret Tate (Bullock) and Andrew Paxton (Reynolds) were able to pull off the dislike to one another and the falling in love beautifully. The setting where Paxton lives on the shores of an Alaskan town was so gorgeous. I could definitely imagine laying out and enjoying the sun for the short months that they get it.


Up! was produced by Andrew Stanton, Denise Ream and John Lasseter, directed by Bob Peterson and Pet Docter and written by Bob Peterson, Pete Docter and Thomas McCarthy. The film was distributed by Disney Pixar and distributed on November 19, 2009. The actors for this animated film are Edward Asner, Jordan Nagai, John Ratzenberger, Christopher Plummer and Bob Peterson.

Rated: 4/Tan

Writer’s Comment: The reason I rated this 4 and not 3 is because I loved the wonderful messages about life that it presented. The film was enjoyable, sad and funny – without it being overabundant in any category. Definitely more of a guy's film, so fathers, take your sons!

*Below is a list of movies that I haven’t seen as of this writing. If you have seen any of these, please write to us and tell us what you would rate the movie and why at Ms. Suntan.


Julie & Julia; G Force; Madea Goes to Jail; The Last House on the Left; Love Happens; Night at the Museum 2; Public Enemies; Battle of the Smithsonian X-Men Origins: Wolverine; The Hangover; Imagine That; The Taking of Pelham 123; My Sister’s Keeper; Public Enemies; Surrogates; Aliens in the Attic; The Invention of Lying; G.I. Joe: The Rise of the Cobra; The Time Traveler’s Wife; The Men Who Stare At Goats.


See you on the beach where I’m going for my suntan!

-Ms Suntan

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