Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (2015) Movie Review

The Scorch Trials is the follow-up to the modest 2014 hit, The Maze Runner, based on the 2010 YA novel by James Dashner.  We continue to follow Thomas and his fellow Gladers, now out of the original maze, taken to a research facility where they meet the main administrator, Janson, who tells them that they will be taken to a place where they will no longer be in danger, once they pass a series of tests.  Thomas soon discovers that not everything is what it appears to be, and comes to the conclusion that their lives will be in danger if they remain there.  They take their chances surviving out on the Scorch, the desert-like surrounding area where a deadly Flare virus has run rampant and has turned much of the infected into miserable and deadly zombies, dubbed Cranks here.  Hoping just to survive, the crew soon discovers that there are other humans left out there, who may be instrumental in fighting back against WCKD (WICKED), the original organization that enslaved them in order to harvest a vaccine to combat the Flare virus.

Black Mass (2015) Johnny Depp – Movie review

Based on the infamous true story from the late 1970s to early 1980s, Johnny Depp stars as James “Whitey” Bulger, a ruthless Irish-American crime boss who climbed the ladder to the top in south Boston as the leader of the Winter Hill Gang.  In some part, it helps that his brother Billy is a highly influential politician in the area, but his biggest breakthrough on the fast-track to success comes when a childhood friend named John Connolly happens to be an FBI Agent assigned to take down crime bosses in Boston, and uses Bulger as an informant to take down what was then bigger fish in the city.  Bulger is no rat, so he says, but if there’s a way to take down his competition while also affording his own activities some protection, he’s also no fool either.  He takes the offer to exchange information for the authorities looking the other way, and soon both Bulger and Connolly gain instant success and influence in their respective positions, though things get more complicated when the murderous, drug-selling, arms-dealing, extorting, racketeering Bulger’s protection allows him to become the biggest fish in the pond.

The Visit (2015) M. Night Shyamalan – Movie Review

Fifteen-year-old Becca and her slightly younger brother Tyler are sent for a week-long stay in rural Pennsylvania to stay at the home of the grandparents they’ve never met while their single mother decides to treat herself to a romantic cruise with her new beau. Their first time staying with the elderly for an extended period, the kids are disturbed by the behavior of their Nana and Pop Pop, including Nana’s cavorting around the house nude in a manic state, or Pop Pop’s tantrums and mysterious trips to he secluded shed outside.