Toy Story 4
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I enjoyed this first installment in the Harry Potter series. It was a bit of a tough watch for me, as I had just finished the book series before watching this film, and there are so many details lost in the translation from book to film. I knew there would be, because there is just too much in the books to jam into a reasonably paced and standard length film. Even still, I though that the film still had to rush in places, particularly in the first 30 minutes. This rushed pace kind of took me out of the film I was also not prepared for some of special effects to be what they were. There are some scenes that are just to heavy in lower-quality CGI, and that also took me out of the story. However, despite these flaws, I thought the had a very good cast. The child actors are all quite good, and I especially enjoyed Emma Watson's Hermione in this film (because she kind of reminded me of my niece with her appearance and attitude!). I also enjoyed Hagrid's portrayal, which was a little less foolish than in the books, so far. I'm divided on Dumbledore's portrayal, as I thought he had the right look, but the voice is not what I had always had in my head. All in all, it is a pretty good film, especially if you are a fan of the book series.
I didn't think Ghostbusters was awful, but I didn't think it was exceptionally strong. I thought it was nicely paced but a lot of the jokes seemed forced and not authentic. I thought the story was a good back bone for a potentially great movie, but there wasn't enough characterization or depth put into it. I liked the cast and I thought there was potential for decent chemistry there. I thought the ghost CGI was pretty decent. All in all, I'm glad I saw it and I don't think it deserved all of the negative criticisms that it garnered during it's development, but it's release didn't dispel some of those criticisms.
There are things things that are great about Suicide Squad and there are things that are awful about Suicide Squad. I thought casting was decent. Margot Robbie was perfect as Harley Quin; that was definitely the highest point of praise for this film. Margot nailed it right out of the park with that characterization and performance. Will Smith was quite good as Deadshot, which I wasn't sure he was going to pull off going in. Deadshot, in the comics, is not like most characters Will Smith portrays, so I was afraid that they were going to heavily rework the character to suit Will. However, there was a very healthy balance between the two and I really enjoyed Will's performance. Jared Leto certainly presented a new and different Joker from what we've seen in the past; it is not my favourite Joker incarnation by a long shot, but I think that it fits the motif and stands uniquely against other renditions of the character and I think that's important for this franchise. I have to give a shout out to Jai Courtney for his Captain Boomerang portrayal, as I didn't even recognize him, nor did I think he had the range to portray a character different from his standard "tough guy American" archetype. Another strong point for the film was the soundtrack. The music selection definitely gave the film a cool vibe, though sometimes the scenes using these songs were jumbled together a little to closely and felt like a mishmash. That brings us to the major criticisms of the film. The story and the emotional tension in this film are poorly done. In a broad view of the story, it looks fine. Suicide Squad are bad guys forced to do black ops missions for the government, we meet them, they do a mission, they become a real team in the process, voila, story complete. Nice and simple. However, establishing the fine details of this story was a mess. They threw a bunch of characters into the mix without give a great deal of depth to most. Like Katana, who was just added mid film with no real context around the character (though I'm impressed that they just gave her the same comics origin she has, verbatim). The non-linear story telling structure they attempted didn't add to the film, but made it more confusing. Characterization wise, they didn't really develop the interpersonal relations and tensions on the team to their full emotional potential. They didn't have Flag dealing with being a "Good Guy" surrounded and tempted by all of the bad guys and black ops situations. They delved into El Diablo at the wrong times to maximize his emotional impact on the film. Overall, I think it is great that Suicide Squad got a film and I love that some of these characters have gotten to the big screen, but looking at it as a film alone I have to say that it was not well done.
A classic Ferrell film, with a very simple story and enough nonsense to not care how simple it is. Despite how goofy this movie is, I'm impressed at how serious Ferrell and Reilly are able to come across. It doesn't feel as cheesy as some other ridiculous performances by the two. It feels real, odd as it may seem. I do enjoy seeing this film every once in a while.
You know, not a great film, but it has its moments in the hockey scene. The love story in this film was there only because a movie apparently needs to have a love story. It didn't exactly further the plot a great deal. I thought Scott did a good job, in that he wasn't playing his usual quick-witted, snappy character. I thought there were a ton of nice Canadian-isms in the film that made it enjoyable, as I watched it with several Americans who were unfamiliar with my homeland; it was nice to share. Overall, I enjoyed this film.