Posted on 6/25/12 02:12 PM
When seeing the trailers for this one i thought the look of it at least is unique and cool, the trailer itself is well put together but we'll see come release time if it's worth a view.
So tonight me and my fiance went to see Rango and I must say, if you are a fan of the old spaghetti westerns and like Johnny Depp this film is for you, and for those that aren't fans of these, go for it anyway it's a pretty awesome animated film.
Now first off I want to say, in my honest opinion, this is NOT a kids animated film it is very much a young adult to adult level cartoon. for two reasons: 1. these characters are not cute and cuddly, in fact some of them are so marred, beaten and dirty you can't even tell what they really are. 2. the film itself is a very gritty old fashioned yet new aged western, there's a lot of grit here, not dark but definitely edgy. some mild language in very rare occasions and a lot of mature themes, but don't worry it's nothing parental block worthy.
okay now into the meat of this review.
"Rango" tells the story of a pet chameleon who gets stranded in the middle of a desert and stumbles upon the town of "dirt" yes that's the towns name, dirt. Rango is basically on a quest to "find himself" and is himself an actor/chameleon, so he's good at changing who he is at will. throughout the story Rango digs himself deeper and deeper into a trench of lies to try and fit in and become a hero. problems arise, trouble ensues and so on and so forth, don't wanna give too much away.
The movie is very trippy and sometimes even a bit random, so when strange stuff happens just go with it, it's nothing so weird you'd think bad of the film. there's a lot going on that plays with the desert hallucination factor so it makes sense for the trippy stuff to be there.
in terms of entertainment I loved this one, i was glued to the screen the whole time, with my fiance's head on my shoulder of course. there is a lot offered up here, comedy, drama action etc. and they all seem to fit together really well.
visually this movie is awesome, so much detail goes into each and every character and set you can really tell this was a labor of love for the director Gore Vorbinski. the only thing, as i stated before, is that visually this movie is as far from cute and cuddly as you can get in animation. for instance, the one bunny rabbit in the film is encrusted with dirt and missing an ear, as well as a pigeon or bird of some sort with an arrow through his eyeball and head yet he functions fine despite of it. really great and unique designs, but not very kid friendly in my opinion.
All in all, I give Rango a 90% it really is a solid western film with plenty of laughs, shocks and thrills with a good story and great characters, taking little kids is something I'd leave to your discretion but there isn't anything terrible to worry about, just some slightly frightening characters and dirty/edgy look to the overall film.
Posted on 6/20/12 01:25 PM
I actually saw the a Avengers on opening night, but ive been away from writing reviews on here for a while, hence the delay in this.
I think i'll review the Avengers in four different aspects: The characters, content/story, action and execution.
The Characters: I have never seen a spin off movie that takes so many different and diverse characters from other franchises, puts them together and still maintains the continuity of all the characters as individuals while also giving them a great amount of development which makes them feel like they come from the same universe. You have Thor a demi god, Captain America a super soldier from a different time and age, Iron man a modern day narcicist/playboy/billionaire/philanthropoist/genius in a high tech suit of armor, Bruce Banner/Hulk(we'll go into more depth on him momentarily) an exiled man-beast with anger issues, Two top assassins (Hawkeye and Widow) and all of them are more different than the sun is from the moon but theyve all been tied together so well by Sgt. Nick Fury of shield, Agent Coulson and the other Shield operatives, that they feel like they all are apart of the same cohesive whole. In short I have never seen a movie that takes so many well developed characters and stays true to their origins while making them feel fresh and interesting.
Now...I love me some Iron man, Cap and Thor...BUT, I have to give only one character some major props in this movie Review.
THE HULK: I love the hulk and have been disappointed to an extent with the other two hulk movies, the first was too mellow dramatic, dark and story driven, lacking action. The second felt too unrealistic and the hulk looked like a abrecrombie model painted green and given an extra does of steroids. But this...this is THE Hulk movie. First off Ruffalo pulls of the mild mannered Bruce Banner so well he over shadows Bana and Norton by a mile in my opinion. Secondly The Hulk himself Not only looks like both the comics version AND Mark ruffalo (finally a hulk that looks like the actor that plays him!) but he has the best action scenes and overall best scenes in general in the whole movie BAR NONE. Spoiler ALert
When the Hulk bashes Loki into the Ground and refers to him as "Puny god"..i could watch that over and over for 2 hours straight.
Now...The last thing on the characters in the movie i wanna mention refers to the aforementioned Loki.
Loki: I thought Tom hiddleston was the best and most memorable part of Thor, and He's def the highlight of the avengers when it comes to the bad guys. Loki is such a well done villain. you sympathize for him in a way but you know he must be stopped and he's fun to watch in all ways.
Content/Story: I really was pleased with how faithful to the comics this story was. Using elements from the first issue of the original Avengers with Loki as the Primary villain and combining that with the use of the Chitauri armies, which also segways into an Awesome possibility for a sequel by including the tease of Thanos in the end credits, genius. The big kicker for me with the story, however, is how well the team involved in writing this story did at meshing all the various story elements that led up to the Avengers from the other separate character films. Mt hat's off to the writers and the director Joss Whedon on making such an interesting and fun/epic story.
Action: I have never seen a movie that handles action so well, a good combination of well coreographed fight scenes, plenty of explosions but not in that mindless michael bay style, good CG elements and clever sets with breathtaking environments and situations, the avengers delivers in a way that should make future action films stand at attention and take note.
Execution: this is the overall shining point of the Avengers, All these elements are fantastic and make the movie a classic on their own. the characters the memorable story and action, they all rock your socks off, but how the creative team, actors and all other members involved with the production of this film took all these elements and brought them together into a very well made, tightly knit epic movie going eperience that will go down as an instant classic and groundbreaking feat in comic book films.
All in all I obviously am giving the Avengers 100%, ive never seen a movie that does what it did so well before and I hope that they take the same level of care and enthusiasm as well as the same amount of time for the sequel as they did with The original, looking forward to more from the Avengers, if you havent gone to see it yet, get out there!
Posted on 7/29/11 11:25 PM
Although I never really was all that familiar with or a fan of Capt. America I thought the movie looked pretty solid even when viewing the trailers alone.
So upon seeing the movie(in 3D) I really feel like I came out of it with a bit more respect for the character, and happy to see a movie and hero that doesnt sell themselves out to the cliches of today's time.
the acting in Cap Am is really some of the best in the most recent marvel films, Chris evans is definitely more cut out for steve rogers than johnny storm. Tommy Lee jones plays his part the way he knows best which fits rather well here, and Hugo Weaving delivers pretty big as the Red Skull.
The story of Captain america is really a great example of what made America great in years past. We really need to realize that this is the greatest country in the world and the Capt. really brings that sense of patriotism to the forefront. The reasoning that director Joe Johnston puts behind why captain america became the iconic figure that he did was really surprising to me. I never could see how anyone could legitimately explain a guy who essentially wears an American flag as his soldier's uniform. But the movie itself gives a great and believable explanation for it that I feel worked flawlessly.
The action in captain america progessively becomes more and more elaborate and fast paced leading up to a pretty satisfying final conflict between our hero and the Red Skull. the 3D in the film was very well done and fit in perfectly, especially when it comes to the Cap's use of his iconic shield.
the only thing I feel I could complain abot in this film, is the kind of rushed feeling we get around the middle of the film. This is more of a nitpicky thing of course but there were times certain aspects of the film felt pressed for time or pushed along a little quicker than you would expect.
All in all I give it an 80% it wasnt the perfect film by no means but just like Iron Man and Thor, Captain America is another piece of Proof that the Avengers film should be a fun adventure flick. Also...stay till the end of the credits, the clip here is one of the most satisfying marvel has dished out yet.
Posted on 1/01/11 11:19 PM
When my fiance proposed checking this one out i came at with a mixture of skepticism and optimism cause frankly i wasn't sure what to gather from the trailers i had seen.
After seeing "How do you know" i was quite happily surprised. there were several moments within the film that made me laugh out loud, the story although highly satirical and not completely resolved was good enough to keep my attention throughout.
the cast of this film was really excellent, Paul Rudd, Reese Witherspoon and Jack Nicholson especially, Owen Wilson was good but really felt like many other roles he's played. Paul Rudd was really quite superb and comical throughout and one of the best parts of the film itself.
all in all i feel this one deserves at least a 50% overall rating in the community, but for me i give it a 70% it had a great cast, interesting story and a great amount of humor throughout.
Posted on 12/27/10 04:34 PM
Never got to see Inception in theaters, and now i wish i had. Inception is one of those films that would take a long time to fully explain so ill keep this as brief as possible.
The idea of Inception is the foundation for what makes it so cool. kind of a more realistic take on the matrix, the concept of going into dreams to plant ideas, gather information and create new worlds to me seems really interesting although a little out of reach.
The story is one of those you just gotta watch it to get it.
The acting here on pretty much all accounts is great,DiCaprio as always gives a grade A performance, and Ellen Paige delivered as well.
The one hindrance i would say there could be for this movie is it's complexity. if you don't pay close attention from the beginning you can end up having no idea what's going on in the story. but this to me is a nit-picky thing.
the visual style of Inception is probably THE most unique and refreshing thing here. the idea of creating a world at will almost as if you were in your very own real life video game is really cool on paper alone and the way it is portrayed here is excellently done, although id day say my dreams wouldn't have looked quite as ... realistic, id probably in my own cartoon world. haha.
all in all i give it 80% cause although i dig the direction and overall concept and story, it wasn't quite as awesome as i had originally hoped.
Posted on 12/10/10 11:19 PM
It's been a while since one of Disney's CG films(apart from PIXAR) has impressed me and felt like a classic Disney film, but tangled has finally delivered.
Tangled is a new telling of the classic story of the golden locked damsel in distress, Rapunzel. the story itself takes a fairly familiar approach but adds in some really nice twists and some great, classic Disney elements.
the voice acting and comedy in Tangled are spot on and really refreshing, its been a while since Ive seen a non-Pixar film that truly made me laugh out loud and maintain that feeling throughout so this one is definitely a breath of fresh air.
The songs, are not ALL as classic as they could be but the moments and music with Rapunzel's evil witch "mother" are nothing short of classic Disney villainy.
The look of the film I definitely have to say is the peak of the film. every character and location is vivid and gorgeously designed, really i would def say that the "art of" book for this one would have to be a treat for those of us who are as big of fans of both the art form here as we are the movie experience itself.
All in all I give it a 100% it has the perfect balance of humor, mood, cutesy and just flat out awesome Disney classic elements in it to win you over and watch it multiple times, def gonna recommend the DVD/Blu ray when they come out. so if you haven't seen it...go for it its worth it.
Posted on 10/24/10 02:18 PM
Disney's major successful animated films today come from Pixar while only a select few greats coming from Disney itself, with Dreamworks we have in my opinion the same scenario. only in this case as with Disney there's PIXAR with Dreamworks it's Aardman studios.
Aardman is the studio responsible for such hits as all the Wallace and Gromit short films, chicken run, and more recently the full length "Wallace and Gromit and the curse of the Were-rabbit" and this review's topic Flushed away.
the mixture of tradition, story humor and wit in Aardman's films including this one is where the company shines.
and although typically the studio's films are done in the traditional medium of stop motion animation, flushed away takes that medium and translates it into CG,and rather well i might add. the characters move and feel as though they were sculpted and animated in the real world. so don't take off points here for changing to the more common medium.
the story of flushed away follows a spoiled and haughty mouse named Rodney living in the royal neighborhood of Kensington in London, when flushed down the toilet by a sewer dwelling newcomer named Sid, Rodney has to find a way home, on the way meeting some new faces, both savory and some not so much. the overall story of the film involves learning to deal with loneliness, personal growth, a little bit of romance and some other great elements you'll just have to see for yourself.
the voice acting and humor of this film is probably the greatest element of the film. a good mixture of dry British humor with some basic universal humor and very little of the empty humor too many animated films and shows nowadays go after make this a funny and innovative family ride.
so all in all i give it a 100% because in my mind it has the perfect mixture of heart, humor and fun to keep you interested throughout as well as enough to come back for a second look.
Posted on 9/20/10 09:01 PM
I was interested in the base premise of this one from the previews and trailers but i never thought it begged a full price movie ticket. so upon watching this on DVD i am really glad i didn't pay full price.
the movie starts out like we would expect it too, typical Virginian family living life the best they know how in the 1970's. the husband(James Marsden) works for NASA and the wife(Cameron Diaz) a school teacher , and the two of them have a son.
in comes this mysterious figure(frank langela) with a major disfigurement. the mysterious man delivers a box with a button in it offering the sum of one million dollars if the two decide to push the button. the catch is, someone somewhere that the couple doesn't know will die.
after this offer is given and ultimately the couple decides to push the button the real mystery and suspense start, and for a while it gets interesting, but then it just goes weirder and weirder, making less and less sense.
by the end of the film i found myself going "wait what?" and so i have to give it a 50% the acting was good for the most part, but the plot got twisted and turned around so much it made no sense whatsoever as to what the purpose there was for anything in the movie.
so i give it a 50% cause it had a good initial premise, decent acting and started strong but ended up becoming a knot of plot holes with a let down ending.
Posted on 8/22/10 06:04 PM
really in my opinion one of M. Night's better films, not a mindbogglingly ridiculous twist but sufficient to give us the fulfillment needed for the story. also in my opinion one of the most unique takes on the comic book/superhero genre, gritty realistic and yet still very fantastic in concept. the acting from Willis and Jackson is top notch and the movie really delivers.
All in all I'd say if you've never seen it then go for it. its a great take on a very popular genre.
Posted on 8/15/10 12:14 AM
Was ale to catch this one a few nights ago, and i had been interested in seeing it since it hit the theaters, but i simply was unable to catch it before it left the screen.
so, upon my first viewing of it only nights ago i must say i was definitely pleased with the direction and acting and overall storyline of this new interpretation of the Sherlock Holmes world. i've never been a fan of the holmes stories however more because i simply knew nothing about them, aside from a few details at least. so i was really going into this one hoping to be able to get into these characters and stories for the first time, and i most definitely must ay im looking forward to the 2011 release of the sequel.
the story of this one although a good opener for the new holmes feels more like a pre-cursor for the main attraction which we will see in the second installment, but i think that's not necessarily a bad thing at all, since i think that was guy ritchie and the writers' intentions, simply to reintroduce us to holmes and watson, and this is very well done in my opinion. i knew that the characters were much dryer in the past but they feel so vivid and interesting here it really makes me glad to be seeing them in this new fashion.
the acting is great here all around, Jude law plays a great watson, a stern character who both hates and embraces holmes' lifestyle of debotchery and eccentricity. but it's robert downey jr who so easily steals the movie away, and as he should. he does eccentric, detail based genius very well.
the way the film is arranged was very interesting and unique, good uses of the slow motion effect(for once) actually have a purpose in telling the story and explaining holmes' though process. and there were many instances that you sit there (at least they will the first time you see them) having an "aha!" moment. this in itself though is one of the film's minor flaws, these "aha!" moments are only truly able to take full effect the first time around watching the film, which for some may mean very low re-watch value, in my opinion however there is enough in terms of story, action and entertainment all around to offer a second look or more even.
all in all i give it an 80% a good fresh look at a legendary world and character set. modern concepts, good action and a introductory story leaving you ready for what's next, minor flaws in the wow factor area but very minor indeed. if you missed it in theaters id def say you should check it out on DVD now.