Posted on 9/23/12 08:10 AM
How on earth am I going to review possibly the most hyped film of the summer.
Trailed by Scott as being a film with "strands of Alien's DNA" and to be fair. It is.
It contains many things in the film that are reminiscent of both Scott's Alien and Cameron's Aliens, with many things falling into line with the overall story arc and the conspiracy of "The company" which belittles the entirety of the Alien Quadrilogy.
Whilst I am praising the film however, it does have some flaws. It isn't sure which route it's going to go down until about a quarter of the way through the film. Whether it will take the dark lighted route of Alien or the philosophical imaginative route of Blade Runner. Whilst it does both in doses and it is thought provoking about perspectives, choices and beliefs. It is hindered slightly by certain routes the film takes as it goes on and with various things left unexplained and unanswered, it will only be answered in a sequel (if there is ever going to be one)
*this paragraph may contain SPOILERS READ AT YOUR OWN RISK*
The visuals are stunning, the 3D isn't overbearing and blurry like it was in Avatar
and it sets up Alien and the following three films nicely, but I would have liked to have more information about the Mala'kak (Engineers, Space Jockeys) as their existence felt it was life or death for the situations that were in-front of the crew. But I don't feel that where they came from, how they did what they did or how they came to have their items in their ship and what David said to the Mala'kak to cause his anger and to rage. Killing both Peter Weyland and reducing David to just a head and body, similarly to Ash in Alien.
Whilst those points are minor and will certainly set up a sequel, the film is absolutely visually stunning, well acted but a lot of the chemistry between the actors feels well, tense. Maybe that was deliberate I don't know.
Film of the year? Possibly.
Posted on 9/07/12 02:19 PM
Us comic book fans haven't been lucky with anticipated movies over the years. We've already had various poor adaptions of various graphic novels and the character of Dredd is no exception to the rule.
After a previously poor stint in 1995 which took several liabilities with the character, Judge Joe Dredd is back and this time he's seeking justice.
Megacity one, home to those who have survived a nuclear holocaust, home of crime, deprivation and home of the Judges, who are Judge, Jury and Executioner and able to serve out sentences at will.
It also introduces the new idea of a drug called Slo-Mo which slows down time and with the 3D it produces a beautiful and a yet strangely hypnotic effect when heads are being blown open, bullets ripping through skin and a first person effect when falling.
The good news for us comic fans is, YES it is perfectly faithful to the comic. The helmet stay's on, Urban has got Dredd's facial expression (yes, just the one) just right, the voice is perfect and there's plenty of references to 2000 AD (Drokk is seen on a shirt and a couple of others)
The bad news however is, the first five or ten minutes loose immersion from the dark, gritty and devastated world of Dredd's because of the lack of technology (of the comic's megacity one) no hover-boards, flying cars or robots. Or even weird looking citizens, but because of the limited budget. They've had to compromise on something.
Good News Everybody! Dredd has not compromised on getting a 12A rating to expand the audience, this film is made by fans, for fans, adults, for adults. The violence is brutal, gripping and sometimes humorous.
Check this out, it is not Judge Dredd 95. It takes all expectations and blows them away, exceedingly well.
Posted on 6/14/12 04:53 PM
Aside from one chuckle, the movie is forgettable, predictable and obviously not worth Nielsen's obvious talents.
Posted on 5/31/12 07:41 PM
The finale of the Matrix trilogy and to be honest. It's a lot better than The Matrix: Reloaded. Reloaded had a lot of irrelevant sequences that just felt joined together and they did not have anything much to do with each other. The Matrix:Revolutions skipped all that. Every sequence is relevant to the plot and it just feels like a smoother ride from start to finish. The special effects are as ground breaking as they were in the original "The Matrix" such as the scene where Neo is walking through the Matrix in the pouring green rain and a good hundred Agent Smiths are waiting for him. Questions are answered in The Matrix Revolutions and over all it is a nice, satisfying ending to a trilogy.
Posted on 5/25/12 04:23 PM
Almost, but not quite the definitive sequel to the first Men In Black that Men In Black 2 should have been. Whilst Men In Black two had it's moments, the story was weak and some terrible jokes placed in-between some lack luster action sequences with an ending that to be honest, was anti-climatic.
Where as three is interesting, well done visually and well polished and there are some very interesting idea's about infinite number of universes causing infinite numbers of possibilities.
But my problems with the film aren't anything to do with the directing, writing or the editing. My biggest problem with the film is some of the plotholes which emerge from Will Smiths time jump and all the casting and scripting problems which plagued the film, plus the fact Tommy Lee Jones is in the film for a very short space of time.
Though Josh Brolin makes a fine version of Lee Jones and has his accents, mannerisms and ways of interacting with Smith's character makes it very believable that he will grow up to be the same man that Lee Jones portrayed in MIB 1+2.
The film is worth a watch, but it's not a complete package. But it's mostly there.
Posted on 5/22/12 03:12 PM
Ah The Dictator a movie which should have been a lot better and a lot more intelligent than it actually is, whilst Baron Cohen makes plenty of references to real world dictators and real world events, yes it shows how informed he is about dictators, (especially a gag about using Uranium for peace) and gags at the Hussaine's and Bin Laden and a dig at Berlusconi. However the film falls flat on it's face when it succumbs to various jokes at genitalia, rape and being a female. Yes, these jokes were amusing in Borat because there was a charm about Borat, it felt that he was so disconnected from western society but he was yet likable if confused. Where as in The Dictator, various events happen on the way that tell us that as an audience we are meant to feel sympathetic for this character and we are meant to be rooting for a mad psychopath who is generally unlikable and totally disconnected from the entirety of Western civilization, yet makes references to various celebrities and what feels like forced celeb cameos and scenes which feel completely disjointed from the rest of the film and it feels like putting five minutes of the Human centipede into the middle of Mall Rats and doesn't work. Overall an improvement on Bruno, but not quite Borat.
Posted on 4/15/12 01:39 PM
Well, I am really unsure as to how to approach this review for a movie like this (and I don't want to give any spoilers)
Seeing as slasher movies have been done appallingly to death. Stupid teenagers get lost on the road, go into a mysterious house and get slaughtered one by one because of a curse (Friday 13th) or a mysterious man that kills in dreams (Nightmare on Elm Street) but this movie is nothing like that.
It takes all the clichéd idea's of a typical slasher/horror movie but plays on them differently and like Dusk Till Dawn, it starts out as a typical movie and then it takes a tangent and it never returns to it's original predictability.
Though some of the idea's in the film I have seen in other places, it takes more clichéd idea's from other genre's and again twists them into something that I haven't exactly seen before, but some of the idea's wouldn't go out of place in something like A.L.I.A.S or The X-Files.
Though my biggest problem isn't in the film itself. The monsters look great, the directing and the editing is good aswell and the typical teenage gang wouldn't go amiss in an episode of Scooby Doo.
But the biggest problem for me is the rewatchability of it, seeing as once you've seen it and everything has been unveiled the only time I'd ever watch it again is with someone that hasn't seen it before and letting them work it out for themselves.
Overall, it's a fantastic movie which does an idea that has been flogged to death in an original and creative way.
Posted on 4/14/12 05:50 PM
Just watched Alien again recently.
What a fantastic movie. There are literally no words that describe why I think that this movie is a classic, but I shall attempt a review anyway.
Alien. A film that was effectively the Anti Star Wars. Where as Star Wars had hope, freedom and a force that was fighting a war which the audience at the time could not believe they would win.
Alien was more of a haunted house/b-movie idea that was dark, isolated and it gave a false sense of security at the start of the movie when the entire crew wake up to find themselves not at earth, but alone, isolated in space, then they find a distress signal. Which is telling the ship to automatically land
and in all good haunted house style all hell breaks loose and the monster appears in Alien's case however the true monster is hardly scene because of Ridley Scott's clever direction and his obsession with lighting, but the Alien only appears fully in a couple of scenes and has less time in the directors cut, where a couple of scenes are shortened.
Now that's the problem with the directors cut. It's all good until a particular scene near the end that was cut because it was felt it lost the entire pacing of the film and that the tension was broke (the pod scene to anyone reading this that has seen the directors cut)
Despite that one problem, the film is pretty much perfect.
Posted on 4/14/12 05:33 PM
Ah yes, Moon.
A rare treat in the river of mediocrity that is coming from Science Fiction at the moment. It's either a super hero movie or a film that doesn't hold my interest like authors like Phillip K Dick, Isaac Asimov, Larry Niven and William Gibson did.
Authors that were creative, inventive and new.
Though new isn't the way I would describe this movie. Seeing as I've seen some of the idea's in other places. Such as in Valve software's Half Life, Portal and others in various Star Trek episodes of long by.
But that's not the point, the point is the idea's are tried and tested in the science fiction formula, but that's not what makes Moon great.
What makes moon great is the tension and the feeling of isolation the protagonist Sam (Sam Rockwell)feels. Sam's only companion is a robot called Gerty who is voiced by Kevin Bacon.
I found Gerty's want and need for keeping Sam inside the moon base particularly effective as it gave us as the audience a notion of curiosity and especially when Gerty is on the comm system when the comm system is meant to be down makes the audience more curious into the conspiracy and the eventual denouement that is about to unfold and all the twists and turns are especially effective in the film.
Though the pacing on first watch can be a little slow, much like the directors cut of Aliens which has a fifteen minute build up which has a lot of satire, scene setting and overally adding tension to the film.
Moon however does some of the same things the directors cut as Aliens did. It sets the scene, it adds tension and it also introduces us to the mundane lifestyle of Sam and what he has to live through on a daily basis because he hasn't finished his tour yet and cannot leave to earth until he finishes.
Without giving too much away, I can only say Moon is worth a watch, yes it might be a bit slow on first watch, yes it might be confusing because of Sam Rockwell playing against himself.
But, it's a fresh hard science fiction film and a huge surprise especially for a low budget film.
Posted on 4/26/11 03:53 AM
*Some spoilers in this review*
Ah yes. Watchmen. A movie that I was incredibly excited and my anticipation for this movie was vast.
As a long time fan of Moore's incredible graphic novel. I was very excited to see this movie.
In short, I was dissapointed. Almost straight away plot changes occured such as the doomsday clock in which the Russian's are planning to drop nuclear weapons on the US.
Ok plot change. I can deal with that, but it feels like Snyder is trying to make a non-linar graphic novel run from end to end and it just doesn't work as some major events never occur and are changed to suit the doomsday clock storyline. Which I was let down by.
That's not the real crime here though, the real error is that Snyder made the film needlessly gory (such as the circular saw through the prisioners arm)and they weren't in the original novel. Sticking a meatcleaver in a criminals head springs to mind here. Yes it makes a point of Rorshach becoming insane, but surely it doesn't have to be that gory.
There are good things about Watchmen though. The acting is good, the art direction is completly faithful to Moore's original and the scope of the movie feels just right.
I know I complained about some of the major plot changes. But some of them are for the better. For example the ending, yes the Tales Of The Black Frieghter were taken out of the equation so no giant squid on New York.
The ending though is a much more naturalistic ending to the story and it still creates the same effect as the original, (two country's at war. Uniting against a common enemy, in this case it's Doctor Manhatten) and if you hadn't read the original novel. The giant squid would just confuse you.
As I said the acting is spot on. They each look like the characters they are meant to be portraying and they portray the characters like they are in the novel.
The movie also expands on a couple of implications that were in the book and also fufils them. For instance Rorshac's implied death by wandering into the snow is fufilled as Doctor Manhatten kills him and the implication of The Comedian being Laurie Juspeczyk's father has been explicitly told to us as an audiance.
Overall, it's worth a watch but don't expect to be completly satisfied if you have read the graphic novel.
If you haven't read it and are wanting to watch it. It's worth it.