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Book Review: Agatha Raisin and the Vicious Vet by M. C. Beaton (1993)

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Synopsis: When a new veterinarian, Paul Bladen, sets up shop in Carsley, the village women swoon over him and even Agatha Raisin, still hurting after her neighbor, James, rejected her, falls for his charms. She's even willing to go on a date with him despite his obvious dislike and cruelty toward dogs and cats. When Bladen dies while performing surgery on a horse, the authorities believe it is an accident but Agatha, believing it is an opportunity to get closer to James, convinces her neighbor to help her investigate it as a murder. Review: Even though there was part of me that was still a bit skeptical about this series, I did enjoy the first Agatha Raisin book enough to at least try a second one and wound up checking this one out from the library a few days ago. I have to admit, after reading this book, I am now hooked. I honestly am not sure what I enjoyed more about this book, the mystery or the comical investigation being conducted by Agatha and James, which consisted of Ag

Movie Review: Crawl (2019)

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Synopsis: When a dangerous hurricane hits her Florida hometown and she can't reach her father, Haley decides to search for him instead of ignoring various warnings not to. When she finds him unconscious in the basement, she attempts to rescue him but learns their escape is blocked by a pair of large alligators. With no help on the way and the basement flooding with rainwater, they realize they either need to get past the creatures or drown. Who's in it? The movie stars Kaya Scodelario , Barry Pepper , Morfydd Clark , Ross Anderson and Jose Palma. Review: I am always a little skeptical about horror movies that feature killer animals because, while there are admittedly some good films, most tend to be a bit predictable and dull. As a result, I was a little hesistant to watch this movie last night and mostly only picked it because it had a shorter run time than my other choices. Was this the best horror movie I have ever seen? No. However, it did turn out to be better than I t

Movie Review: Gemini Man (2019)

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Synopsis: Already unable to sleep because of the 72 people he has killed and feeling his skills are beginning to deteriorate, 51-year-old assassin Henry Brogan decides to retire. However, when he inadvertently learns the truth about who his last target was, his former employers decide he needs to be eliminated. Since his is the best in the game and hard to kill as a result, they eventually send the second-best, his 23-year-old clone, to finish the job. Who's in it? The movie stars Will Smith , Mary Elizabeth Winstead , Clive Owen , Benedict Wong and Linda Emond . Review: When I first saw the trailer for this movie, I didn't think it would be a film I would enjoy, mostly because it sounded extremely predictable. However, my wife and I were looking for a movie to watch last night and, since this one was available, we decided to give it a try. The film more than exceeded my expectations. The thing that surprised me about this movie was it wasn't quite as predictable as I th

Book Review: Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death (1992)

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Synopsis: Agatha Raisin decides to retire early and move from London to the small village of Carsley. Determined to make an immediate impact on the village, Agatha signs up for a quiche competition and, to ensure victory, submits a store-bought quiche as her own. Unfortunately for her, the competition is rigged and she doesn't win. More importantly, the competition judge, Mr. Cummings-Browne dies later that evening, her quiche is named as the cause. Horrified about the death and embarrassed after being outed as a cheat, Agatha is determined to prove the death was caused by a murderer. Review:  To tell you the truth, I've been a bit reluctant to read M. C. Beaton's Agatha Raisin series because I was a big fan of her other detective, Hamish Macbeth , and was concerned this detective would pale in comparison.  However, after several disappointing books in a row (which I couldn't even finish), I decided to go back to a familiar author and was not disappointed. First of all

Movie Review: Playing with Fire (2019)

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Synopsis: Superintendent Jake Carson, the commanding officer of a group of smoke jumpers, hopes to honor his deceased father by becoming division commander. When a news helicopter records him rescuing three children from a burning cabin, that promotion seems to be in the bag. However, he and his crew must first take care of the trouble-making kids for a weekend. Who's in it? The movie stars John Cena , Keegan-Michael Key , John Leguizamo , Brianna Hildebrand , and Tyler Mane . Review: My wife wanted to see this movie after coming across the trailer for it some time ago and, since we had time to watch a film last night, I decided to watch it with her. It ended up being a cute albeit somewhat predictable choice. I still prefer John Cena in action movies rather than  comedies but did think he did an OK job as Jake Carson by bringing just the right amount of serious tough guy to the character while still mixing in a bit of comedy as well. The character I liked most, however, was Axe

Movie Review: Slasher Party (2019)

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Synopsis: A group of social media influencers attend an exclusive after party at a mansion only to discover they have been lured into a trap by a mask-wearing killer. Who's in it? The movie stars Vitaly Zdorovetskiy , Simona Dimov , Sole Bovelli , Kelsey Laverack and Danny Trejo . Review: I was getting a little bit bored with watching reruns yesterday evening and convinced my wife to watch a slasher movie with me instead. I picked this film mostly because the bad guy looked kind of cool. Unfortunately, it turned out not to be worth our time. There are very few "good" slasher movies out there, especially those made after the 1980s and, for the most part, I've found it's best to just grade the genre on a curve. Even with doing that, this movie was failure. The biggest problem with this movie is there is just way too much filler, most of which is drug related. For a while, we were beginning to wonder if anyone was going to get murdered and, when it finally happen

Movie Review: Bill & Ted Face the Music (2020)

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Synopsis: In 2020, 25 years after becoming famous by winning the Battle of the Bands, Bill and Ted have yet to fulfill their destiny of uniting the world. To make matters worse, they learn they need to record their yet-to-be-written unifying song in a little more than an hour to prevent a complete collapse of time. In desperation, they steal the time-traveling phone booth so they can talk to their future selves. Meanwhile, their daughters decide they want to help and travel back in time to assemble a new band. Who's in it? The movie stars Keanu Reeves , Alex Winter , Samara Weaving , Brigette Lundy-Paine and Kristen Schaal . Review: When I first heard about this third installment of the Bill & Ted franchise, I was admittedly a bit skeptical. However, I almost always stop to watch the first two movies whenever I come across them on TV, despite seeing them more times than I can remember and, because of that, I still would have paid to see this film at a theater had it not bee