Review: Deadpool

Story:

“Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) is a former Special Forces operative who now works as a mercenary. His world comes crashing down when evil scientist Ajax (Ed Skrein) tortures, disfigures and transforms him into Deadpool. The rogue experiment leaves Deadpool with accelerated healing powers and a twisted sense of humor. With help from mutant allies Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand), Deadpool uses his new skills to hunt down the man who nearly destroyed his life.”

Deadpool

Review:

This is pretty much what I expected and that’s both good and bad. First the good stuff. It’s funny and fast paced and they get Deadpool spot on. The violence is over the top and hilarious as well. The fourth wall breaking doesn’t go so far as to break the movie.

The supporting characters are good and I wasn’t expecting colossus to be so entertaining. He plays the straight man to Deadpool and it works really well. T.j. miller from How to train your dragon is good as well. It took me a while to place him. They’ve even got an old lady as Blind Al but she’s only in a little bit.

The only good thing I wasn’t expecting was how good the romance between Deadpool and his girlfriend was going to be.

So far in super hero movies I can name two couples that are actually compelling and I like to watch. That’s Tony Stark and Pepper Potts, and Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy, who were the only good parts of The Amazing Spiderman 2.

Vanessa is just as weird as Wade and they play off each other really well. So much so that it’s actually emotional when he gets cancer and they have to deal with it as a couple. I got emotionally involved in a movie where Deadpool gets shot up the arse and you see the bullet hole.

But it feels like all that good stuff gets wiped out when she then gets treated like female characters always do in these movies. The bad guys get hold of her because Wade’s causing them trouble and he’s got to go save her. Boring.

You know I actually believed this trailer when they had her saying I’m no damsel in distress. I can’t believe I fell for that.

And you’ve got so many people saying this is such a different super hero movie, it’s reinventing the genre. No it’s not. It’s just more focused on comedy than your typical super hero movie and is quite a bit more violent but everything else stays the same.

It felt like watching Guardians of the Galaxy and being disappointed with Gamora all over again. Or like with Ant-man and how they treated Hope.

Why couldn’t she have been a mutant or been involved with the plot in some way other than just being the love interest.

The expected bad stuff is that he may be pansexual but I didn’t see any reference to it. And if I missed all the little implied references, well that’s not good enough. I’m tired of it being implied and having it go straight over my head.

If a bigot can watch it and deny the sexuality of the main character then it’s not good enough. It’s cowardly and pathetic. The director confirms Deadpool’s pansexual to people who ask, who have a vested interest in Wade’s orientation, but won’t state in clearly on the screen. All you needed was one line from Wade stating he had had a boyfriend or he’d slept with men. Something.

I guess I got what I asked for though. There’s no homophobia. At least I don’t think there is, again all these little implied things tend to go over my head. Although there was one scene where she had a strap on and they were trying anal sex but he didn’t like it and I suppose that was meant to be a joke. Why isn’t he allowed to like anal sex?

I guess I also forgot to ask for no sexism because it’s 2016 and we should be over all of this shit by now.

It’s good enough movie and it made me laugh. And once I get over my disappointment I’ll be re-watching this movie. That will just take a bit of time. By the time the sequel comes out I’ll be fully on board again and hoping for better. As always.

Rating: 6 out of 10

Top 10 Most Anticipated Movies of 2016

Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them

10) Fantastic Beasts and where to find them

I love Harry Potter. These books were my childhood and I loved the movies but this feels like a cash in. Franchises are in at the moment and who ever owns the movie rights to Harry Potter has realised there’s lots more money to make here.

I have some hope because Rowling’s involved so it should be decent, but I don’t like Eddie Redmayne that much. I think he’s way over rated. Although I kind of liked him in Jupiter Ascending because his performance was so over the top and entertaining.

I want to like this so much and I just want more Harry Potter. There are so many stories to tell in that world and I’m disappointed that we are getting another lead who’s the typical lead for pretty much all Hollywood movies.

 

Batman v Superman

9)Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

This is another movie that I really want to like but I have a feeling that I won’t.

Mostly that’s down to Zac Snyder directing and the choices he makes. Like hiring an inexperienced actress to play Wonder Woman based on what she looks like rather than talent. I’ve got nothing against Gal Gadot, she’s an actress and this is her job, and I don’t like all the body shaming that went on when she was hired. I think the criticism should be on the choices Zak Snyder is making. Wonder woman is an icon and one of the most well known female super heroes ever. They should have got an actress who was really experienced to play her. Like they got Ben Affleck to play Batman. Instead they get a woman who’s not done a lot of acting and you know they hired her because she’s hot or pretty or sexy or what ever. When that shouldn’t be the basis for hiring the actress to play wonder woman.

And if they hadn’t made other sexist choices I probably wouldn’t be as sure about that but we still haven’t gotten a female led super hero movie where someone actually puts effort in to make a good movie. And that’s a criticism levelled at marvel as well.

But this is meant to be why I’m excited for this movie. Well all of the above is why this isn’t higher on my list. And this is only the second movie in the DC cinematic universe so they don’t have my trust yet.

What I’m excited for is Batman v Superman. I’m sceptical about how much I’ll like the movie but even the trailers are getting me excited. With Batman promising to make Superman bleed, and Superman destroying the bat-mobile just by letting it crash into him.

I’m hoping that even if I hate the overall movie there will be lots of awesome moments that I can get excited about. It doesn’t matter how many times I explain this movie to my dad, he still doesn’t believe Batman can fight Superman.

 

Suicide Squad

8)Suicide Squad

This is higher up my list than Batman v Superman because it’s not Zac Snyder directing but we still get Batman and the Joker. Add to that Harley Quinn and Will Smith playing one of them (I don’t know the DC universe that well). This looks exactly like my sort of movie. I’ve bought some of the comics so I’ve got a lot of reading to do.

 

Finding Dory

7)Finding Dory

I hope this won’t be one of those occasions where Dory was a good side character but only tolerable in small doses. A lot of people felt that way about Minions and while I liked the movie I get where they’re coming from.

I liked Finding Nemo but I don’t love it the way other people seem to and I’m pining all my hopes for this movie on one character. I love Ellen, and Pixar doesn’t usually make bad movies as long as you don’t count Cars.

 

Star Wars: Rogue One

6)Star Wars: Rogue One

After seeing The Force Awakens I’m fully on board with Star Wars in a way that I wasn’t before. Now I’m invested in these movies being good.

They’ve finally got characters I can relate to and care about. I don’t know all the details and things that happened in the other movies because I can’t remember and rewatching them isn’t a priority. But even I understand what stealing the Death Star plans means to the Star Wars universe.

I hope that some of the anthology movies explore different parts of the universe and get away from this one part.

There must be so many stories you could tell. I know they’ve decided to make all the books not canon anymore (as if it matters what they say, I’ve got my own head canon for most things I watch and get all fannish about so really that seems like a giant waste of time trying to dictate to me what is and isn’t canon) but there’s got to be some good stories in all those books.

I’m not that interested in a Han Solo movie, that’s exactly what we need, keep the Star Wars universe small and go back to it being about white straight cis gendered able bodied men. That list has a lot of adjectives they should choose to change at least one in their main characters.

 

Ghostbusters

5)Ghostbusters

A sci-fi movie with all female leads who are also really funny. I don’t know how they can screw this up to make me not like it.

All I can say is, it’s about time. About time that women were recognised as a legitimate part of the audience who have money they can spend. About time that a female lead is surrounded by other women and not just men. About time that all the whiny idiots get ignored and people realise that, like when women go see movies about men and can relate on some level to them because we are all human, so to can men go see movies about women and relate because women are also human.

All the controversy surrounding this movie is ridiculous and irrational but then no one ever said misogynists were rational.

The first Ghostbusters movie isn’t being taken away. You can still see it. And don’t worry the amount of male leads in the movies is still far ahead of the number of female leads. Just look at this list. I’d say most of them have male leads.

Although Finding Dory has Dory replacing Nemo so maybe they’ve got a point. Don’t worry though it’ll still be a few more years before we’ve replaced all the male parts with female ones.

 

Captain America: Civil War

4)Civil War

The last Captain America movie was so good and I want to like this one so much but the civil war story line in the comics was terrible. It was all over the place and inconsistent between different books. It was also when I stopped reading comics for a while.

I have mixed feelings about this because it can’t be the same story line as in the comics. None of them have secret identities so they’ve got to frame the issue a different way.

Also in the comics it was Iron man who was meant to be right. The pro registration side was the right side and cap was on the wrong side. But due to crappy management of the entire thing it didn’t across that way.

So it worries me that they’ve got the civil war story line in a Captain America movie. I’m not much of a fan of Steve Rogers. I hated Captain America: the first avenger and I didn’t much like him in Avengers Assemble either. He grew on me a little bit in the Winter Soldier. But now they’re pitting him against Tony Stark who’s one of my favourite super heroes and I don’t want to watch a movie where they make him the villain. He won’t be the main villain but he could be one of the bad guys.
Despite all that I love the marvel cinematic universe and I want to see what they’re going to do with it. I trust them enough to be fair to all the characters (unless it’s a female character then you’re screwed). And after seeing the trailer where Steve and Bucky fight Tony and Tony cradles a broken Rhodey I’ve got to admit I’m getting excited.

The directors are the same guys who did Winter Soldier and who are going to be doing Avengers: Infinity Wars part 1 and 2. So I have a lot invested in liking this movie.

 

The Conjuring 2

3)The conjuring 2

The first one was so good. A horror movie where I actually care about the characters shouldn’t be something different and new but so many horror movies have awful characters and I can’t wait for them to die. So there’s no tension and it just becomes a guessing game of who’s going to get it first.

The Conjuring actually had characters I liked and where as most horror movie franchises seem to be based on the villains (Freddie kruger, Jason, Michael Myers) these are based around the Warrens who are the heroes.

It’s a good basis for a franchise and I can’t think of any other horror movies that have done this. There’s scream but Sidney doesn’t go out looking for serial killers to fight. They find her.

Anabelle was a huge disappointment and a giant step back for the franchise but there were so many people in the cinema when I went to see it and that’s unusual for a horror movie.

 

X-men: Apocalypse

2)X-men: Apocalypse

Days of future past is one of the best super hero movies ever so I’ve got really high expectations, especially with Bryan Singer back as the Director. Jennifer Lawrence is back as Mystique and it’s Hugh Jackman’s last time as wolverine in an X-men movie.

I’m so excited for the apocalypse story line. X-men was what got me into comics. I used to watch the cartoon and then one day I saw an X-men comic in amongst the magazines. I didn’t buy them consistently until I was older and had a part time job but I was always on the lookout for X-men stuff.

Apocalypse is such a good villain and so far Bryan Singer hasn’t made a bad X-men movie for some inexplicable reason, despite making some really bad movies.

 

Deadpool

1)Deadpool

He’s one of my favourite super heroes and I didn’t think we’d ever get a movie about him because it’s Deadpool. He’s violent and a lot of what he says isn’t for kids so to get a good Deadpool movie you need it to be more adult and that cuts out all the kids they want to make money out of.

Blade is the only adult super hero movie I can think of and it’s a bit old now. So this will be refreshing to have a different sort of super hero movie for a change because I doubt the rest of them will be anything unique.

The director has also confirmed that Deadpool is pansexual so this will be the first super hero movie with a queer main character. At all. I’m not just talking about being the main title hero. I can’t think of any queer character in any super hero movies. Or science fiction movies. Or fantasy movies (I’m going to do some research. There’s got to be one). So it’s kind of a big deal.

Of course he’s got a girlfriend in the trailer so I don’t know how much he’ll be expressing his sexuality. I doubt we’ll get much, if anything that will make it impossible for other people to deny it. That’s how I judge representation now. If it’s only implied and can be denied by some bigot then it’s not good enough. We’re in 2016 it’s time to stop pandering to the bigots.

The only thing that’s making me apprehensive is if his sexuality is a joke. Because that seems to be the only time when sexuality, other than heterosexuality, is allowed to be expressed. To make the male straight audience uncomfortable and so they laugh.

Can this movie not be homophobic? Or biphobic? Or panphobic? It’s really not a lot to ask.

I’d like to come out the other side of this movie not feeling like shit. It can be a bad movie (I’ll probably still enjoy it) but can it not be homophobic. They’ve got my hopes up by actually being aware that other sexualities exist beyond straight. I so want to like this movie.

They’ve got the marketing for this movie so right. They obviously understand Deadpool in a way that the creators of X-men Origins: Wolverine didn’t.

January Movies

I didn’t think there was much to be excited about movie wise this month. There was only Joy and that’s because Jennifer Lawrence was in it and the trailer showed her with a shot gun. I didn’t expect to like Creed so much that I went to see it twice (something I’ve only ever done for super hero movies and How to train your dragon). Nor did I think I’d be so bored by The Revenant I’d hate it as much as I do.

Joy

Story:

“A story of a family across four generations, centered on the girl who becomes the woman (Jennifer Lawrence) who founds a business dynasty and becomes a matriarch in her own right.”

Joy

Review:

Joy is the only likable character in the entire movie. Her family are all terrible and I have no idea why she supports any of them. I don’t care if they’re family, they are all awful people, which may make them entertaining but also really annoying if you’re exposed to them in more than small doses.

Her ex husband isn’t too bad once he gets out of the basement and actually manages to help her. But everyone else seems to want her to fail. They’ve done nothing with their lives so they don’t want her to succeed either.

It’s also a bit of a weird movie. There are lots of time jumps and it’s all linked together through narration by her Grandmother. The problem I had with it was I’d get really into the future scene or the flashback and then suddenly we’d be in the present again and I’d forgotten we’d jumped forward or back because it had been a while.

I liked it because it’s got a lot of energy to it and it’s a bit weird giving me a break from the same old stuff you always see. Jennifer Lawrence is always good and she holds it all together.

It’s not for everyone though and my mum hated it, finding it really boring. Not everyone likes weird stuff and it might be a bit all over the place for some people.

Rating: 6 out of 10

 

Creed

Story:

“Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan) never knew his famous father, boxing champion Apollo Creed, who died before Adonis was born. However, boxing is in his blood, so he seeks out Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) and asks the retired champ to be his trainer. Rocky sees much of Apollo in Adonis, and agrees to mentor him, even as he battles an opponent deadlier than any in the ring.”

Creed

Review:

I wanted to like this movie because the trailers looked good but I wasn’t prepared for how much I would like it. The movie centers around Adonis Creed who wants to be a fighter but never put the time needed into it to go professional. His life is heading in a different direction until he decides to quit his job and make boxing his full time focus.

Michael B. Jordan does great as Creed but it’s Sylvester Stallone that I was surprised by. I didn’t like the first Rocky movie and I haven’t watched the others because of it but in this I was really invested in Rocky’s story.

Stallone and Jordan have great chemistry together. As do Adonis and his girlfriend, even the romance isn’t boring. She’s got her own thing going on and has an actual personality. I have seen so many movies where they substitute personality with being hot, as if that’s a character trait. She feels like a real person and so it feels like a real relationship I can get invested in.

The movie is mostly about legacy. Creed is building his own legacy, while stuck in the shadow of his father’s legacy and Rocky is looking back at what he’s going to be leaving behind. I found the movie a lot more emotional than I expected it to be and that’s down to all the great characters.

I always love movies that show getting good at something is hard work. And after all Rocky has the most famous training montage of any movie.

This movie had me invested throughout the whole thing. All the relationships worked for me and I cant wait to see where Creed goes after this. Because there has to be a Creed sequel. Even if it got ignored at the Oscars it’s better than all crap that got nominated (excluding Room).

Rating: 9 out of 10

 

The Revenant

Story:

“While exploring the uncharted wilderness in 1823, legendary frontiersman Hugh Glass (Leonardo DiCaprio) sustains injuries from a brutal bear attack. When his hunting team leaves him for dead, Glass must utilize his survival skills to find a way back home to his beloved family. Grief-stricken and fueled by vengeance, Glass treks through the wintry terrain to track down John Fitzgerald (Tom Hardy), the former confidant who betrayed and abandoned him.”

The Revenant

Review:

That summary of the plot above is a lot more exciting than the actual plot. The opening scene is exciting, even though we know nothing about these characters as they are graphically killed. So I’m not emotionally invested I’m just cringing at the gore. But a fun action scene is a fun action scene.

And the bear attack is gripping for a few seconds before it goes on too long and I’m sitting there, skeptical he would have survived a bear standing on his head and then jumping on his spine. And that’s after he’s been chewed on and ripped to shreds. Oh and not to forget he also gets his throat slashed. If they were going for realism that’s where they lost me but I was still interested in how he was going to get his revenge when, you know he eventually got betrayed. Except it really is eventually. The movie is so slow.

This wasn’t the movie I was expecting. I was expecting a deeply personal revenge tale that’s heavy on the drama and has a little action thrown in because it’s a western. Instead I got a movie obsessed with over the top violence and making the character suffer (beyond what I think a human could survive) just because suffering is what gets you nominated for an oscar.

I had to look up who directed ‘12 years a slave’ because I was convinced it must be the same director as this. They both have the same long pointless shots that go on way too long. Although at least ‘12 years a slave’ had a character in their long pointless shots, even if he is just hanging from a tree while they try to emotionally manipulate us.

And the same boring main character who is only interesting because you’re beating the crap out of him.

Glass really is such a boring character. I already knew from the trailers that his wife was dead but I didn’t know that that was all we were going to get on his character.

Well done he has the most popular (cliched) back story for a male character ever. I was prepared to ignore the Disposable Woman trope  because I thought there would be more to him than that but there isn’t. And the rest of the movie lacks any depth either so I’m not going to ignore it.

It’s like this director looked at ‘12 years a slave’, decided he wanted to win an oscar too and took all those elements and added them to his story. There is no point to this story.

The main character doesn’t change or grow. The only change is that his son dies and we see that in the trailer. If the point is, revenge is in god’s hands, then that’s stupid because half the movie is him just surviving and has nothing to do with his wanting revenge. He’s struggling his way back to civilization because if he doesn’t he’s going to die. The only choice he makes is to live, everything else just happens to him. He spends the entire movie reacting to what other people, or nature, are doing.

This movie wasted over two hours of my life. It’s so slow (I can’t drive that point home enough). The opening action scene was quick but then everything slows to a crawl and we get long shots of the sky or trees. Like they’re trying to be deep and failing miserably. Instead of adding anything to the movie it takes me completely out of it. I’m sat there wondering if the projector broke.

This movie also suffers under the delusion that you can sacrifice interesting character for torture porn and get away with it, just because it’s a drama and not a horror movie.

I don’t watch the torture porn sub genre of horror because it’s boring. Graphic torture isn’t interesting to me and it doesn’t add any depth to your movie but it does seem to fool a lot of people into thinking it does.

I’m convinced that’s why 12 years a slave got an oscar (that and America seems to be pretty racist), and I’m fairly sure that’s why this has been nominated.

They wasted two and a half hours of my life when you could have cut an hour off easy by getting rid of the long shots of the sky or when his wife appears to him multiple times and keeps repeating the same lines about trees being strong. I get it I don’t need it hammered home.

Of the cast Tom Hardy is good but needs subtitles because I can only catch a word every other sentence. Leonardo Dicaprio probably deserves an oscar for this. His performance is good I’m just distracted by the shitty movie.

It’s a very pretty movie but it doesn’t have much else going for it. It should probably win for best cinematography but not best picture. This is just torture porn for pretentious people who like drama.

Making your main character suffer a whole lot of pain does not add depth. If it did hostel or one of the saw movies would have won an oscar by now.

I was so looking forward to this movie and it so let me down.

Rating: 3 out of 10

 

Room

Story:

“Held captive for years in an enclosed space, a woman (Brie Larson) and her 5-year-old son (Jacob Tremblay) finally gain their freedom, allowing the boy to experience the outside world for the first time.”

Room

Review:

If The Revenant is everything I hate about movies then Room is most of the things I love. It looks at the world from a unique perspective we don’t usually see in this way, that of a child and I found it utterly captivating. From the beginning as the boy narrates his world and you see how his mother has kept him and herself sane, to the second part as he explores the outside world.

The first half is the boy and his mother stuck in a room and it’s all the little things that keep it interesting. She tells him stories about how there’s nothing else but what’s in the room so when it comes time to escape she has to make him understand there is actually a whole world out there and what he has to do when he gets out. Everything depends on him being able to cope with all these new things he’s never experienced before. Like grass, trees, people and animals. It had me gripped. And is an example of how you have only a few characters and keep it interesting without needing one of them to be attacked by a bear.

The little boy is a brilliant actor and Brie Larson has been nominated for an oscar. I’ve seen all the oscar movies now and Room is the only one I think is any good. The rest of them I’m not even sure why they’ve been nominated.

Rating: 9 out of 10

Next Month

There’s Deadpool which is the movie I am most looking forward to this year, Zoolander 2 that I’m not looking forward to, Goosebumps that I hope will give me some nostalgic feels and Spotlight that I hope will be as epic as the trailer promises.

Review: Jurassic World

Story:

Two brothers visit Jurassic World for the first time. Their Aunt Claire runs the park and they haven’t seen her for quite a while. This also happens to be the time when the new hybrid dinosaur gets so smart it hatches a plan to escape. So now there’s 20,000 people on the island with the brothers lost in the park and the hybrid dinosaur hunting for sport.

Review:

I spent the first part of the movie waiting for that moment that would be similar to seeing the dinosaurs for the first time in Jurassic Park and it never came.
This movie’s biggest problem is there’s no sense of wonder with the dinosaurs but that does make it fit what the movie is about. Which is getting bored with things and wanting bigger better faster.
It’s fitting since it’s a movie where a boy is more interested in his phone than in the dinosaurs. This movie feels like a criticism of sequels having to be bigger and have higher stakes than the last. Because if that’s what makes a sequel good then Jurassic World succeeded.
This time it’s 20,000 people instead of a handful and the hybrid is bigger than a T-Rex and smarter. But it’s not a good movie. It’s an okay movie. So by failing to be as good as the first it proves it’s point that bigger is not always better.
The dinosaurs are the only redeeming factor of this movie because the characters certainly aren’t interesting. I think they knew they didn’t have to try to get people to go see this. All they had to do was create an okay movie and people would see it. In huge numbers apparently because it’s broken the box office.
I like the hybrid dinosaur but it’s presented as irredeemably evil because it hunts for sport not to eat. This is so we don’t feel bad when they decide it’s got to die.
But if hunting for sport is the deciding factor for if something is evil then there’s a whole load of humans who need to die. But what else can you expect from a Jurassic Park movie. The first one was great but on top of all the questionable science it had a greedy lawyer who got eaten on a toilet.
I think all of the movies demonised people in suits. Apart form the third one. There they get rescued by a guy in a suit on a beach with a megaphone. My point is that morality is very black and white in the Jurassic Park universe.
In this movie you know who’s going to die but it’s still fun seeing how bad he’s going to get before that happens and how exactly it will happen. Hopefully in the most ironic way possible but I’m not that picky. As long as he dies by dinosaur I’m good.
I think the science is better this time round. Actually let me rephrase that. I think the questions around the implications of the science are better this time round. The first one didn’t seem to understand what scientists do. Which is to use other scientists research and build on it to create progress.
I don’t have a problem with cloning animals as long as they aren’t suffering. They’re not people, they don’t have identities so they’re not going to have an identity crisis when they realise they’ve been cloned.
The only question raised in Jurassic Park that had any merit was when Doctor Saddler questions putting dinosaurs into an ecosystem that’s been without them for millions of years.
Where as Jurassic World deals with what happens when you mix two species. That’s two sets of instincts hardwired into the hybrid’s brain. What would happen? I don’t think they delved into that enough. I think it would be fascinating to explore the instincts of the dinosaurs that got mixed and how it creates conflict. But I guess the hybrid is mentally unstable if that’s what they’re implying with the whole killing for sport thing. It’s hard to tell what’s caused this behaviour because it’s also been raised in isolation and so doesn’t have any manners any way.
The main character is a career woman and she doesn’t want children and the movie treats that as bad. It’s a lot of sexist crap that’s very annoying.
Chris Pratt pretty much plays Star Lord again but without the dance off. Watching Guardians of the galaxy I felt let down by having the hero be the same hero you see everywhere. But I don’t feel as let down this time because I wasn’t expecting a movie that would break the expectations of the genre.
After all this is a dinosaur movie it’s going to be stuck in the past. There’s going to be criticism of the strong career woman who doesn’t want kids and needs a man to make her life complete. This isn’t too bad it’s in the background. It all gets overshadowed by the dinosaurs thankfully. They’re both likable enough that you’re not rooting for them to die.
We also get a bit of a reverse on the trope of the man saves the woman and she kisses him because she realises she loves him. Basically the woman acting as a prize for the man’s heroism. It’s only a very small moment though in a movie that otherwise keeps the gender roles strict.
Of the two brothers the little brother is the one who likes the dinosaurs and the older brother is such an ungrateful little sod at getting to see dinosaurs that I’ve completely sided with the littler one. I refuse to learn their names. I don’t know what the kids in the first one are called and I don’t care here either. They were just there to get uptight career woman into the park so we can all laugh at the stupid woman running around chasing dinosaurs in heels.
I don’t know why I’m being quite so sarcastic about this movie because despite it’s problems I enjoyed it. It was never going to top the first one but it beats the other sequels by a lot.
This movie is for you if you like dinosaurs and want to see obviously immoral people get eaten. You don’t need to see the previous movies ( you should have seen Jurassic Park ) but there are little easter eggs that it’s enjoyable to spot and one returning character that I enjoyed watching. There’s also set up for a sequel but I’m not sure where exactly they’re going to go with it.

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Review: San Andreas

Story:

The Rock vs. An earthquake.

Review:

It’s every predictable disaster movie I’ve ever seen. Right up to the Rock being estranged form his wife and she’s moving on with another man. I wonder how that will turn out. And his daughter is far away and isolated and they have to go save her.
It’s a very entertaining movie I’ve just seen this before. The Rock’s always likable though and he’s good in this. A lot better than other main characters I’ve seen in disaster movies. All the other characters did fine too. There was no one who was terrible.
The special effects were very good. You believe those buildings are collapsing and the entire street is moving like a wave.
The biggest problem I have with it is it tries to take itself too seriously. The scientist guy is a fine character but I don’t need him to science babble up a reason for why it’s happening. I just want to watch the Rock saving people from destruction (which is another problem I’m going to talk about in a bit). And ultimately the scientist guy’s story goes no where. An evacuation happens because of him but I don’t think it did that much.
So the Rock is playing a guy who saves people from dangerous situations and that’s how he’s able to go save his daughter. It makes it plausible because he’s got a helicopter and lots of saving people skills. The only problem is he ignores everyone else in order to save his daughter.
I think he saves one other person in the movie after the earthquake starts that’s not family. As he’s flying in his helicopter to go save his daughter all I’m thinking is aren’t you on call or something. Isn’t it your job to save all those people back there in that ruined city. He saves his wife from the rooftop and doesn’t even try to help anyone else. He’s not much of a hero.
The other problem is that the movie seems to think it needs a bad guy. Or that we need a bad guy to hate. We don’t, there’s enough conflict with the earthquake. We never need a bad guy in these sorts of movies. And if you’re going to have a bad guy he needs more screen time and to be a hindrance to the heroes. Otherwise there’s no point to him. The end of his story was predictable but amusing. At least they tried to make him a person at the beginning instead of the evil caricature he turned into.
The ending is good but stretched my suspension of disbelief too far.
Then we get the funniest scene in the movie as the camera pans across the destruction and a lone American flag unfurls. I laughed out loud. I know American’s are patriotic and the flag was everywhere after 9/11 but this seems a strange place to put it. Did the earthquake insult America?
Overall I enjoyed myself and it was fun movie. All the standard disaster movie tropes didn’t make it an awful movie but I think it’s only worth seeing if there’s nothing else to watch.
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Review: Insidious Chapter 3

Story:

Quinn’s trying to communicate with her dead mother and goes to a psychic Elise who is trying to stay away from the whole contacting the dead thing because it’s dangerous. Elise tells her not to make contact because when you talk to one of the dead all of them can hear you. Predictably she doesn’t listen and bad things start happening.

Review:

This is the third movie in the series and usually by this point in a series (horror movies in particular) the movies are terrible. It’s just a giant cash in and not much thought or effort goes in to making the movie it’s own unique thing.
Insidious Chapter three manages to escape that trend by being a prequel and showing the events leading to the first movie.
Before I saw this one I always got Insidious and Sinister mixed up. Both have one word titles that mean something bad and they were both pretty forgettable. Now I know which one is which because of Elise. The second Insidious was bad and even more forgettable than the first one.
Insidious Chapter three may not have the best story, I think it falls apart a bit at the end, but it’s a good horror movie. It’s much scarier than the first or second containing not just jump scares but terrifying moments with great tension.
A lot of these moments happen when Quinn is injured and confined to her bed. She’s unable to escape and has to wait for what this ghost, that you can see is in the room, is going to do next. They do the smart thing and keep the ghost out of sight for most of the movie. We mostly just see the ghost’s feet as she ends up on the floor a lot. When we do see the ghost clearly it’s still quite creepy and doesn’t diminish it as much as seeing other monsters usually do.
This time when they enter the further (it’s like the after life or where you go when you’re dreaming, it’s not clear exactly) it’s not as bad as the first movie where it stopped being scary. That’s probably because it’s Elise entering this time.
This is more Elise’s story and Quinn gets forgotten by the end of the movie. They should have just had her be the main character from the beginning. Her struggle to overcome her fears of what will happen if she’s goes back to the ghost hunting business are compelling. And while Quinn’s struggle with the death of her mother and letting go may be equally compelling she’s not in the other two movies.
By the end Quinn is relegated to damsel in distress and the only saving grace is that it’s a woman who’s doing the rescuing. She’s surrounded by a lot of men but she’s the one in charge.
Having the main character be injured for the majority of the movie and unable to move isn’t something we see a lot. It adds to the terror because she can’t get away even if she wants to.
The ghost is unseen until the end. There are a lot of shots of his feet and him being in darkness. Even when you do see him clearly he remains scary.
I hope they continue on from this movie for the next one, if they’re doing a next one, so we get to see more Elise and how they started their company.

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Movie Review: Mad Max: Fury Road

Story:

“In a stark desert landscape where humanity is broken, two rebels just might be able to restore order: Max, a man of action and of few words, and Furiosa, a woman of action who is looking to make it back to her childhood homeland.” There’s more information about the movie at IMDB.

Review:

This movie is everything good about the post apocalyptic genre and I was really excited for it. I’ve only seen the first Mad Max so you don’t need to watch any of them to get this movie.

There aren’t a lot of narrative twists and turns. It’s pretty much what the trailers promised. Solid relentless action for two hours. It’s chaotic but you still know what’s going on and who’s attacking who. That’s usually my biggest complaint with action movies, not being able to see what’s going on or figuring out where everyone is.

The choreography of the action is amazing and imaginative and a lot of it was practical stunt work. The way the camera swings around just makes the entire thing flow beautifully.

It had me completely sucked in and caring about the characters even though there’s very little character development done through dialogue. It’s all done through the way people act and the choices they make. As it should be.

Not a lot is explained in this movie. It’s all done through the set design and costumes. It’s the little details that make the world building brilliant. How the cars are modified to be more suited for battle and that even as the war rig breaks they never stop to fix it. They fix it as they’re moving.

We’ve seen this story before and we know the character motives but it’s the action that makes it different. And the fact that the person who saves the women is a woman. Charlize Theron plays Imperator Furiosa and it’s more her story of hope and redemption than Max’s. He helps them but they don’t need as much help as you’d think.

I understand now why all the men’s rights activists hate this movie. It’s women helping women and it passes the Bechdel test. There wasn’t one of those moments when I roll my eyes and wish women had better roles in movies. Other than damsel in distress. Here You’ve got pregnant women and older women saving people and fighting for their own freedom.

There’s a sense of desperation throughout the entire movie. From the people at the beginning who worship Imorten Joe as some sort of god who brings them water to later when they realise there’s no where left to go. What’s the point in going on? Why would you want to survive? That’s what I found myself thinking half way through the movie. Everyone is struggling to stay alive but what for. What sort of future can they have? And ultimately it’s about what ever hope you manage to find has to be flexible enough that it can change with your circumstances. You have to find something to live for.

If you like post apocalyptic craziness you’ll like it or if you’re looking for a good action movie. Don’t see it in 3D though there’s no point. There’s only one moment at the end when it looks like a guitar flies out of the screen that I remembered it was meant to be in 3D.

This is going to be one of my top films of the year and it’s now one of my favourite action movies ever. I highly recommend it.

I’m going to watch it again because I know there’s stuff I missed the first time but first I’m going to watch Road Warrior and Beyond Thunderdome.

Also there’s this brilliant mash-up of the opening to the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and Mad Max: Fury Road. It works surprisingly well.

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Upcoming movies 2014

I managed to miss quite a few movies that I wanted to see last year so here’s a list of all the fantasy, science fiction and superhero movies coming out in 2014.

I’m going to try as watch as many as I can in the cinema but quite a few of them come out close together.

I, Frankenstein comes out on January 29th. Modern updated Frankenstein who doesn’t actually look like a monster just has a couple of scars. He’s caught between two immortal clans who are fighting an endless war. It looks like it might be a good action movie but that’s all the trailer makes it look like.

Robocop comes out on February 7th. It’s been almost 20 years since the original which I haven’t seen and I’m not sure I’m going to try to see it before this comes out. Unless it’s on netflix.

The lego movie comes out on February 14th. I can’t wait for this. It looks so funny with so many characters I love. I love the lego video games.

Vampire Academy comes out on February 19th. This could be good because it looks like they’re making fun of that whole young adult novel to movie genre. There are two female leads so hopefully it will focus on their friendship.

Welcome to yesterday comes out on February 21st. This does not look good. Most time travel plots don’t work out that well. The trailer did not impress me.

300: Rise of an empire comes out on March 7th. The first one I liked because of how ridiculous it was and it was entertaining to watch with squeamish people. This seems very unnecessary. I will probably go see it but I’m not hoping for much.

 Captain America: The winter soldier comes out  on March 28. I didn’t like the first Captain America probably because I have a dislike of the way the character is written sometimes. But this looks like it’s going to be good. They’ve taken inspiration from political thrillers and I like that each of the Marvel movies gets their own feel. Black widow is also in it and I hope she’s written as well as she was in Avengers and she doesn’t go back to being the sex object that she was in Iron man 2.

Muppets: most wanted also comes out on March 28. I love the muppets and the trailer has some really funny moments. I hope they aren’t the only funny parts. There are also a whole load of cameos.

Divergent an adaption of a young adult novel comes out April 4. It’s got a female lead and is science fiction so it’s being compared to Hunger games. But that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. I liked the Hunger games. And if we can have hundreds of movies where some white straight muscly guy gets into fights and blows stuff up why can’t we have another film about a girl in a future world who rebels against the government. It looks different enough to be entertaining.

Amazing Spiderman 2 out on April 18.

Transcendence comes out on April 25th.

Godzilla out on  May 16. I hope it’s better than the last Godzilla movie that’s not a high bar.

X-men: Days of future past out on May 22. I can’t wait. I didn’t like first class that much but the original X-men movies I love. And no matter what I love a cross over. Even if there are loads of continuity errors between the movies. I can ignore that because it’s unlikely I’ll watch first class again. But we get to see Ian Mckellen and Patrick Stuart again. This has also got to be one of the most difficult movies to describe where it comes in the franchise. It’s a sequel to First class but it’s a prequel and sequel to X-men and the wolverine. I think that’s right.

Maleficient out on May 30.

How to train your dragon 2 out on July 4. I need to watch the first one because I’ve heard good things. And it’s Dreamworks so I’m more likely to like it.

Transformers 4 comes out on July 10th. I really have no faith that this is going to be good. I can’t stand Michael Bay at this point with what he’s doing to Teenage mutant ninja turtles. Also the whole racist and misogynist thing is getting old. Get rid of Michael Bay and reboot the entire thing.

Dawn of the planet of the apes out on July 17. I didn’t like the first one but more Andy Serkis is  always good. The trailer is brilliant. I think it’s the part of me that likes to watch films where the world is in chaos that likes this.

Jupiter ascending out on July 25. Looks like it’s going to be good if only because it’s made by the creators of The matrix.

Guardians of the galaxy out on August 1. I’m looking forward to this. Marvel’s taking a risk and I hope it’s good. I plan on reading the comics before watching the movie but I tend to fail at these sorts of things.

Hercules comes out on August 8th.

Intersteller out on November 7. Christopher Nolan wrote it so it’s going to have a legion of fan boys defending it.

Hunger games: Mockingjay part 1 out on November 21. I am so looking forward to this. I can’t decide if I want to read the book or not. I read the first book and it was alright and I’ll probably read the second but I might watch the films first. They are better than the books.

The hobbit out on December 19. This is the end of Peter Jackson’s middle earth because I really doubt he’s going to adapt the Silmarillion. This film has got a lot to do and we get more Smaug and the end of that cliffhanger.

Night at the museum 3 comes out on December 26th. I really need to watch the first two before I  see this. I never really got around to it and I’m going to watch them before I research this film. And at this point it’s such a long way off that they haven’t released a plot synopsis yet.

I’ve probably missed a few but there’s only so many times I can go to the cinema in a year.

Thor: the dark world

The best part of the film is Loki and that’s not saying this film is bad. It’s better than the first one. I’m likely to buy this one on dvd where as I would only buy the first one as part of some sort of Avengers collection.

Tom Hiddleston is brilliant as he was in the Avengers. He makes Loki sympathetic and likable where he could easily be just the standard villain.

In the first Thor movie I was more on Loki’s side than I was Thor’s. At least until the end. I like Thor better now. But that was probably because of the Avengers.

I know that was Thor’s character arch in the first movie. Going from arrogant thuggish prince to a more humble prince who actually thinks before he acts. But that doesn’t mean I have to like him.

I like that we get to see more of Asguard and some of the other realms. I know we were told we’d get to see all nine and some people are annoyed that we didn’t but I’m not one of them. I don’t really know a lot about Thor because I didn’t read his comics so I’m happy with what we got.

The actors all know what they’re doing at this point. Thor and Loki are hilarious together and there’s a funny little cameo I liked even though I don’t like the character. I love the cameos and references to the other films. It’s what makes these films unique to anything else going on.

There are two end credit sequences. One half way through and the other at the end.

I didn’t realise that Christopher Eccleston played Maleketh.  At one point I think I read it but by the time I’d seen the film I’d completely forgotten. And I didn’t recognise him either due to the heavy make up. And he only spoke in subtitles.

I think I missed half of what he said. Those subtitles either went by quicker than normal or I need glasses. Or I wasn’t paying enough attention, it could be any of those options.

The down side is the villain is a bit forgettable and Christopher Eccleston is wasted. I can’t remember what his plan was other than destroy Asguard. It’s all very vague.

Jane Foster was kind of boring but I’m glad she got into trouble on her own merit instead of it being something Thor did. And I’m glad it didn’t become a love triangle between her Thor and Sif. I hate love triangles.

Considering the other females characters in the marvel movies, like Black Widow and Pepper Potts, Jane falls short. She doesn’t have much personality.

There was some criticism of the science talk and that it didn’t make sense but I can’t say I noticed. I don’t expect these movies to make complete sense. I expect to be entertained and as long as there’s some sort of explanation given I’m happy. After all  it is Thor, he’s a god and there’s magic. I think there should be rules to magic but when you mix it with science it all gets very complicated.

I tend to pay attention to the characters first then the  explanations of how everything works. These films are about the characters for me and as long as they remain consistent I can look past little things wrong with the story.

Overall this was a very fun movie with a lot of good moments. The only down side is the villain and a lot going on in the first half with one too many characters. Luckily it’s all funny and none of it bad. All though you might not like what they’ve done with Erik Selvig. He’s gone a bit crazy after having Loki in his head. I find it funny but not everyone does.

But Loki and Thor more than make up for it. I’m definitely getting this on DVD when it comes out. One of the better marvel movies.