Andrew Brown's Profile - Rotten Tomatoes

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Rating History

King Solomon's Mines
2 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

You have to admire the film's audacity, as it's a shameless ripoff of Indiana Jones from start to finish, with the characters of the second movie, and the general plot of the first movie. The movie even manages to end with notes similar to the third movie, which was impressive, since it hadn't even been made yet. John Rhys-Davies even shows up, again as an Arab with an inexplicably Welsh accent, and Jerry Goldsmith, the poor man's John Williams, even provides the soundtrack. This is all appropriate, since Indiana Jones was inspired by 1950s adventure serials, which in turn were inspired by the original King Solomon's Mines book. This film follows the book's plot so loosely, however, that it's pretty obvious that cashing in on the Indiana Jones fad was its main purpose.

The film is kind of exhausting, actually, since it moves from one action sequence to another with barely any break. While at first I was amused by its audacity, at about the film's halfway point I had lost interest and was only half-paying attention to it. A decent flick if you're tired of Indiana Jones and want a similar movie to it, just don't expect much out of it.

Guardians of the Galaxy
2 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

Guardians of the Galaxy is a fun, competent, but ultimately conventional Science Fiction flick.

Most of the movie's problems comes from the script. A lot of the action is telegraphed, with characters literally exclaiming what we're seeing, as though we can't figure it out for ourselves. The best example is probably in the climax, when Peter Quill hallucinates his mother, and exclaims "Mom!?" presumably just in case you weren't paying attention to the very first thing that happens in the movie. The motivations of some characters--particularly Gamora and Drax--aren't really explored, they're just stated and then followed through on. "I'm helping you because I hate my father. Okay, let's go!" is basically Gamora's entire character arc in a nutshell.

Then there are moments in the plot that are basically absent. It's well established why Quill, Gamora, Rocket, and Groot end up in the prison that brings the group together. Drax? He's just kind of there, with no explanation for what he did to end up there. He's there because he needs to be there for the plot. Then there are the cliches. The movie opens in a hospital. A main character's loved one is sick. She dies. And yes, there's a lingering shot on a flatline. Later, the characters are in a prison. Yes, they're approached by a hulking thug who threatens them, who they deal with by proving they're an even bigger threat. Even the big battle sequence that caps the film is something you've seen in nearly every other space opera, with little of the awesome spectacle that made the last part of The Avengers such a triumph of popcorn entertainment.

The last complaint is that several parts of the movie seem to be "what if?" scenarios put into the film just to solve problems the authors have created. There's an alien ship about to land on a planet. "What if our fighters could create an energy network that would act as a net?" Then it happens. There's a dark room they need to see in. "What if Groot could spontaneously produce bioluminescent spores?" Then it happens.

Don't get me wrong. This is a good bit of entertainment. But the successor of The Avengers mantle it ain't. It's so tangential to the rest of the MCU, in fact, that it's likely to only be a footnote, and we can only hope that the already-announced sequel does a better job of really exploring these characters, as the rest of the MCU films have done, instead of just presenting a situation and putting a zany group of misfits on a course to solve it.

Gladiator (2000)
3 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

Well written and well acted. Almost every conversation foreshadows what happens later, or else is a conversation about more than one thing. Some of the characters are a little flat (particularly hero Maximus), but they are bolstered by good relationships with more interesting supporting characters. Commodus, in particular, is almost cartoonish in his supervillainy and Freudian issues, but the character is written with such sincerity and performed with such fervor that he comes out as a prime example of how to portray such a villain. Strong action sequences will bring in some of the crowd, and strong plot and characterization will bring in the rest. A cloud-pleaser all around.

The Final Countdown
3 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

As an example of how a United States Naval vessel would behave if it and its crew were thrown back in time forty years, it's a fascinating exercise. As an actual story with a plot, there isn't a whole lot really going on here.

Emperor (2013)
3 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

The investigation of Emperor Hirohito's alleged participation in war crimes is fascinating and should have composed the bulk of the movie (you know, given its title and all). Hirohito and MacArthur are the interesting characters in this, despite a rather rose-colored portrayal of the now-infamously egotistic Supreme Commander. Unfortunately, the film spends far too much of its time wrapped up in a Madame Butterfly-esque sideplot whose climax, naturally, leads to the ultimate resolution of the story's alleged central conflict rather than any kind of compelling argument about the Emperor himself.