Nick Picks Flicks

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Featuring Nick's film reviews, Flickreel is an online movie magazine specializing in video-based articles. It covers all the latest film news, reviews, previews and trailers, alongside features which take a deeper look into the world of film.

All the top 10 lists Nick has scripted for WatchMojo.com, the 7th largest YouTube channel in the world throughout 2014.

Story Monsters Ink is a free, subscription-based magazine that gives parents and educators the latest news about award-winning and debut books, profiles on both renowned and newly published authors, upcoming book events, author presentations and more.
The Nerd Repository: providing the latest movie, TV and pop culture news and reviews.
Featuring Nick's film reviews, the East Valley Tribune serves the east suburbs of Phoenix, Ariz.
Phoenix Film Critics Society: Representing Arizona's Premier Film Critics

Nick's film review column at Filmfestivaltoday.com.

A comic strip sadly inspired by the real life of Nick Spake.

Phoenix Children's Hospital's Camp Rainbow is for children who have, or have had cancer or a chronic blood disorder. Nick has acted as the camp's social media coordinator since 2014.
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About Nick Spake

At the age of fifteen, I launched NickPicksFlicks.com, a website dedicated to the art of film. Since then, I have worked as a published film critic for Arizona State Press, Ahwatukee Foothills News, Nerd Repository, Film Festival Today, Arizona Filmmaker Magazine, and East Valley Tribune. Entertainment writing has also given me the opportunity to interview several big name celebrities, including Emma Stone, Chris Evans, J.J. Abrams, Emma Roberts, and various others. My life hit a roadblock in 2013 when I was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma, but I refused to let having cancer prevent me from writing film reviews and finishing college with a 4.0 GPA. In May 2013, I graduated from Arizona State University, achieving a BA in Theatre and a minor in communications. Teaching me just how precious life is, my disease further influenced me to reach out to others through my writing. Today, I'm happy to say that I am currently cancer free. As of September 2014, I have worked as a freelancer writer for WatchMojo.com, which recently surpassed 6 million subscribers on YouTube. This video content site has acted as a creative outlet for me to write top ten lists about movies, television, video games, and pretty much everything else. Out of the hundred scripts I've contributed to them so far, I'm primarily proud of the Top 10 Sci-Fi Movies of All Time, Another Top 10 Super Bowl Commercials, and Top 10 Worst Movies of 2014. In 2015, I joined the Flickreel family as a a critic and columnist. I'm overjoyed to be on the team and can't wait to bring you all more movie reviews.

Rating Scale

5 Stars= It's Simply the Best

4 Stars= Totally Rocks

3 Stars= Rad

2 Stars= Bad

1 Star= Terrible 

Zero= Totally Sucks

Recent Blog Entries

Finding Dory

Hooked on Dory ****

Like "Finding Nemo," this is another touching,  funny, and meaningful adventure full of delightful  characters. While "Finding Dory" doesn’t surpass the  original 2003 masterpiece, it was worth waiting 13 years for this follow-up.

Read more at Story Monsters Ink:

http://www.fivestarpublications.net/storymonsters_dir/pdf/smi-july-2016.pdf


Central Intelligence

The beginning of beautiful friendship ***1/2


It might sound like an odd combination, but Hart and Johnson are an extremely endearing duo. While not on par with Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling in "The Nice Guys," they do save "Central Intelligence" from being just another buddy movie.


Read more at Flickreel: 


https://www.flickreel.com/nick-flicks-why-dwayne-johnson-and-kevin-hart-make-central-intelligence/

Genius 

More competent than genius **1/2


"Genius" leaves you wanting more. If only the script had an editor like Maxwell Perkins.


Read more at Flickreel:


https://www.flickreel.com/genius-review/

The Conjuring 2

James Wan conjures up something spooky ****

Even if it doesn’t quite reach the same heights of a horror masterpiece like "The Babadook," "The Conjuring 2" will give you the chills in all the right ways.

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/the-conjuring-2-review/

Warcraft

Worst video game movie ever? *


"Warcraft" makes "Ratchet & Clank" and "The Angry Birds Movie" look like masterpieces by comparison. Is this the worst video game movie ever, though?


Read more at Flickreel: 


http://www.flickreel.com/nick-flicks-is-warcraft-the-worst-video-game-movie-ever/

Now You See Me 2

Illusion, Michael! ***1/2

"Now You See Me 2" is appropriately like a magic show. It’s ridiculous, preposterous, and shamelessly over-the-top. At the same time, it’s also stylish, imaginative, and simply a lot of fun.

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/now-you-see-me-2-review/

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping

More fun than a box of dicks ***1/2

"Popstar" is Lonely Island’s answer to "This is Spinal Tap."

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/popstar-never-stop-never-stopping-review/

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows

Laura Linney and the Ninja Turtles don't exactly go hand in hand **1/2

"Out of the Shadows" treats its audience like kids, offers nothing new, and ultimately lacks a heart.

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/nick-flicks-what-out-of-the-shadows-couldve-learned-from-the-ninja-turtles-cartoon/

Me Before You

Daenerys Targaryen saves the day ***1/2

"Me Before You" is far from a perfect movie. It’s cliché, sappy, and mostly predictable. This adaptation of Jojo Moyes’ romance novel does have one magical thing going for it, however: Emilia Clarke.

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/nick-flicks-why-emilia-clarke-saves-me-before-you/

Maggie's Plan

A woman with a plan ***1/2

While "Maggie’s Plan" is probably an acquired taste, there is a lot to admire in this mixed bag, particularly our leading lady.

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/maggies-plan-review/

The Nice Guys

Bad cop, worse cop ****1/2

Almost thirty years ago, Shane Black wrote the screenplay for "Lethal Weapon," one of the greatest buddy cop movies ever made. "The Nice Guys," which Black directed and co-wrote with Anthony Bagarozzi, is quite possibly the best buddy cop movie since the original "Lethal Weapon."

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/the-nice-guys-review/

Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising

Every animal house needs a cat fight ***1/2

"Neighbors 2" surprisingly lives up to its predecessor and works as a standalone comedy as well. It’s by no means a comedic masterpiece. For a follow-up that seemingly had nowhere to go but down, however, it delivers a lot more laughs, wit, and maturity than audiences might anticipate.

Read full review at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/nick-flicks-is-neighbors-2-one-of-the-better-comedy-sequels/

Money Monster

Mad money! ***1/2

Jodie Foster’s "Money Monster" works on several different levels. On one hand, the film is an intense thriller and an involving mystery. On the other hand, it’s a dark comedy with sharp commentary on the stock market. The result is something like "The Big Short" meets "Captain Phillips."

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/money-monster-review/

Captain America: Civil War

Marvel vs. DC? No competition ****1/2

Where "Batman v Superman" felt rushed, overstuffed, and dramatically uneven, "Civil War" is almost perfectly paced, well-adjusted, and  thought-provoking throughout. It’s further evidence  that Marvel understands how to produce a great  crossover, not to mention an outstanding superhero  movie overall.

Read more at Story Monsters Ink:

http://www.fivestarpublications.net/storymonsters_dir/pdf/smi-june-2016.pdf

Keanu

He's the One ***1/2


You know how lazy, uninspired, and utterly pointless "Ride Along 2" was? Well "Keanu" is the complete opposite.


Read more at Flickreel:


http://www.flickreel.com/keanu-review/

Mother's Day

Worst Mother's Day ever **

"Mother’s Day" is the third film from director Gary Marshall about a large ensemble celebrating a popular holiday, the first two being "Valentine’s Day" and "New Year’s Eve." However, it feels more like we’ve seen this movie three million times before.

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/mothers-day-review/



Ratchet & Clank

I'll rip you a new one ***

"Ratchet & Clank" by no means breaks new ground for animation. However, it could be seen as a minor stepping-stone for video game movies.

Read more at Flickreel:

http://www.flickreel.com/nick-picks-could-ratchet-clank-be-a-stepping-stone-for-video-game-movies/