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PODCAST: Film Focus Episode 15 – Is It Too Late For A Black Widow Film?

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Howdy ladies and gents of the internet, as some of you may have seen, back in April I started a film podcast entitled Film Focus and on this podcast I talk about various topics in film and reviews as well. I was actually meant to make this post available last week but was super busy with work, but hey better late then never right?

Anyway here’s the 15th episode:

This is a topic of conversation I’ve wanted to talk about for some time now, Black Widow has become one of the most notable and well-received characters in the MCU since 2012’s The Avengers (I mean she was good in Iron Man 2, but I think more people took notice of her afterwards), and these days talk of her getting a solo film is something that always comes up every so often because a lot of fans want it, but unless Marvel Studios are still finding the right means to make it happen or just don’t care, a lot of people are left wondering if it’ll ever happen. And with the ever-changing nature of Hollywood and the cinematic film landscape, the longer Marvel leaves this, the less interested people will become, so I thought I’d just share my thoughts on the matter and hopefully start up some discussions.

As I said before in each episode I’ll cover a different topic and since I don’t have much in the way of listeners or promotion, I’m here to spread the word about my podcast.πŸ™‚

You can find my main site on Soundcloud here: https://soundcloud.com/film_focus

Or if you’re on iTunes subscribe and rate me on there: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/film-focus/id1114233892?mt=2

So if you have some spare time on your hands and would like to listen to the ramblings of a passionate/strange man then please check it out, and share it with your friends if you can. Also you have any feedback or if you’d be interested in joining on future episodes be sure to let me know, until next time, laters!πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on August 26, 2016 in Films, Media

 

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PODCAST: Film Focus Episode 14 – The 2016 Summer Movie Season – Has It Been A Disappointment?

Howdy ladies and gents of the internet, as some of you may have seen, back in April I started a film podcast entitled Film Focus and on this podcast I talk about various topics in film and reviews as well. I was actually meant to make this post available last week but was super busy with work, but hey better late then never right?

Anyway here’s the 14th episode:

Even though the summer movie session is not completely over, but most if not all of the heavy-hitters have come out and since there’s been some discussion online about the quality of this year’s summer of films I thought it’d make for a good episode on the podcast. So in this episode I cover all of the film’s I’ve seen and talk about whether this year has been a disappointment for summer films.

As I said before in each episode I’ll cover a different topic and since I don’t have much in the way of listeners or promotion, I’m here to spread the word about my podcast.πŸ™‚

You can find my main site on Soundcloud here: https://soundcloud.com/film_focus

Or if you’re on iTunes subscribe and rate me on there: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/film-focus/id1114233892?mt=2

So if you have some spare time on your hands and would like to listen to the ramblings of a passionate/strange man then please check it out, and share it with your friends if you can. Also you have any feedback or if you’d be interested in joining on future episodes be sure to let me know, until next time, laters!πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on August 26, 2016 in Films, Media

 

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What I’m Currently Watching #23 – Summer Edition!

Howdy ladies and gents, and after how many months away welcome back to What I’m Currently Watching where I give you a tiny update on what TV-based stuff I’m watching and give mini reviews/impressions on them. I feel terrible for leaving this series dormant for several months now, but work, life, timing and effort were all factors that prevented me from coming back to this. But since I’ve gotten a little spare time recently I had to talk about some TV. So with week 23, I’m gonna talk about two of the shows I recently finished; The Get Down and Luther. Oh and careful for minor spoilers below…

The Get Down (Part 1)

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So The Get Down is a show I’ve been excited about for ages since I heard about it online many months ago, the concept of the show just intrigued me with the 70’s setting and birth of the hip hop genre amidst the all the drama, crime and violence. I finally saw it last week over the course of one day and really enjoyed it.

At first I wasn’t keen on the more fantastical/otherworldly nature of this show, it seemed to ride this line between realism and fantasy and sometimes with the way certain scenes were framed and the use of sound effects took me out of the show on a good few occasions. That being said, once the show got going it became really fun, interesting, and engaging. Regardless of how true to life this show is in terms of the depiction of the time period, disco and the early phase of hip-hop, DJ scratching and being an MC, this show did a great job at showing the origins of these elements with an interesting cast of characters in the main and secondary cast. The show has a great sense of fun, pride and drama, and while some of the characters and story elements aren’t as compelling as other. Once the six episodes are over you really want to see more. The best part was seeing Ezekiel’s journey, seeing Grandmaster Flash and following the formation and adventures the Fantastic Four Plus One. This was my favourite material as it was really engaging, fun, fabricating and felt really realistic to a degree. I also liked seeing the state of New York during the 70’s with pop culture, crime and the difficulties that people faced. The cast is solid and really bring these characters to life. Firstly there’s Justice Smith who’s great as Ezekiel “Zeke” Figuero, Zeke is an interesting character because of he’s a smart,talented ad yet conflicted and has struggles with his future, love interest and friends. Shameik Moore who I loved in Dope was pretty good as Shaolin Fantastic, this was a very different side of Moore than what I’ve seen, Fantastic was strange, cocky and made questionable decisions, but he was an endearing and stylish dude. Jaden Smith as Marcus β€œDizzee” Kipling was good, I know these days it’s cool to hate on Smith because of his acting and questionable comments on social media, but Dizzee felt like a role that was made for Smith, he’s artistic, otherworldly and not everyone gets him, but he’s spiritual and pretty cool. Skylan Brooks was really good as the level-headed Ra-Ra Kipling, and T. J. Brown Jr. who initially annoyed me ended up being cool as Boo-Boo Kipling.

The one weak link for me was Herizen F. Guardiola as Mylene Cruz, and it wasn;t so much Guardiola’s acting, she was great in the role, but it was the character I couldn’t get on board with. She had such a hot and cold attitude with Zeke and her quest to become a famous singer in the disco genre just wasn’t as compelling as the Fantastic Four Plus One, however, her story definitely gets better in the later episodes.
Jimmy Smits was really good as Francisco “Papa Fuerte” Cruz, I wasn’t sure what to expect from him in this show but he ended up being one of the most engaging characters because of the balance he had to do between his business and personal life. From the recurring cast Giancarlo Esposito was fantastic as Pastor Ramon Cruz, he was scary, ferocious and felt like he was channelling a bit of Gus from Breaking Bad. Also Mamoudou Athie was really cool as Grandmaster Flash and finally Kevin Corrigan, who I’ve loved since Fringe and Comminuty was one of my favourite people as Jackie Moreno, he played a record producer who had a lot of bad habits but was also brilliant at his job. I’ve enjoyed this show so far and I can’t wait to see season 2.

Luther (Seasons 1-4)

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So Luther, that British TV show from the BBC that a lot of people have been going on about for years, I only got around to watching it in the last week. Yeah it has taken me that long to check it out haha. I can see a lot of people being surprised by this but there’s a legit reason. During its initial run I wasn’t too interested in a lot British TV and didn’t commit to shows that were longer than 30 mins. However after I was exposed to all of the US TV I binged during uni, I became open to watching longer TV like Boardwalk Empire, Game of Thrones, Sherlock and so on. This show has been on my watch list for years (mainly the last two), but I’ve had a lot to check out and after finishing The Wire in July, Luther was next. So how was Luther? Pretty darn good, but not without its issues.

What was notable straight away was how engaging things were from the first episode. From the beginning the stories featured a variety of scenarios relating to DCI John Luther and the crimes he investigates, these stories are full of danger, mystery, intrigue and drama. The cool thing about these stories was that they were captivating and entertaining in the best possible way with some episodic adventures and some that were in two or more parts. And while most episodes focused on the police cases normally involving murder, they were times when the show deviated away to Luther and his personal life or side cases, and some of the best episodes involved stories involving crazy or creepy murderers and/or Luther’s personal life. That being said, what surprised me about this show was how ridiculous it got. Some of the stories, dialogue and character motivations stretched the realm of realism and the term suspension of disbelief comes to mind. With each season the scenarios got more and more ambitious and absurd, however, after a while you do adjust the over-the-top and silly nature of some of this show as it becomes part of the fun and crazy rollercoaster of an adventure.

It also helped that the show was shot very well, the cinematography was lovely and this show does a great job at showing off London in all its beautiful and not so beautiful scenery. But it is the characters that make the show super fun and engaging to watch. Firstly there’s Idris Elba as DCI John Luther and Elba is great, along with Stringer Bell from The Wire, this is the key role that shows why people love Elba as an actor because of his dramatic range, likeability and screen presence. The next key performance in this show comes from Ruth Wilson as Alice, she’s introduced early on as a dangerous, unpredictable and unlikable character, but over time your grow to appreciate her, and after a while you can’t get enough of her and that is due to Wilson’s performance that is so captivating, creepy and sexy all at the same time. Other great characters include Dermot Crowley as DCI/DSI Martin Schenk who initially is a stern and douche-like character and then becomes one of the key people in Luther’s circle of people, Warren Brown as DS Justin Ripley is another great character who is Luther’s partner and friend and has some really key moments in the show, and some other notable people I liked were Michael Smiley as Benny ‘Deadhead’ Silver,Β Aimee-Ffion Edwards as Jenny Jones and Rose Leslie as DS Emma Lane. As an overall show it is good but flawed due to the fact season 1 and 2 were great, season 3 wasn’t as good but still enjoyable, and the two-part season 4 was interesting but felt hollow and inconclusive. I do hope that Luther will get a proper ending because this fun show deserves it.

Well that’s what I’ve been watching. So have you seen or plan to watch any of these shows? If you have any thoughts be sure to drop a comment below and let me know what TV shows you’re currently watchingΒ  too. Until next time, laters!πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on August 25, 2016 in Life, Media, Reviews, Television, TV Reviews

 

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QUICK LATE REVIEW: Finding Dory

Howdy ladies and gents, time for another one of those new film reviews and today I’m reviewing something I should have talked about a while ago; Finding Dory. After seeing all of my main films in the cinema, I decided to finally see Finding Dory as it is the only other film currently going that I haven’t checked out yet. So was it good or bad? Well read on and find out.

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The story for this film can be summarised as the following:

“Dory, the amnesiac fish remembers that she has parents and goes on a quest to find them. In the process she gets caught and taken to an aquarium in California, so it is up to Marlin and Nemo to save her.”

Before I begin I have to say that while I like Finding Nemo, it’s never been one of my favourite Pixar films and when I heard about this sequel I was so uninterested it was unreal (unlike when Incredibles 2 was announced). So when the film was released I just had no immediate need to check it out, but I’m glad I gave this film a watch as it was much better than I was expecting. Firstly I didn’t expect this film to have so many layers when it came to Dory and her backstory, and then with some of the other central chaarcters she interacted with. I aslo didn’t expect the film to have the emotional content that was on display, it was genuinely touching and dramatic at points and it definitely was tapping into that Pixar magic that the best films are known for. But for all of the great elements, this film has a lot of standard/so so moments that I think would work more if you were a die-hard fan of the original or a child when it came to the references and humour.

The cast was solid with some lovely performances from all involved. Firstly Ellen DeGeneres as Dory was pretty much the same as you remember from 2003, Dory’s still quirky and zany, I’ve always found the character annoying to a degree and that’s definitely the case in this film too… HOWEVER! This film goes a long way to make you empathise with her because of her past, short-term memory and her need to find her parents. I felt for Dory and she became a really compelling character and DeGeneres really added layers to the character with her voice work. Albert Brooks was also gret as Marlin, and Hayden Rolence also did a good job as Nemo, both Marlin and Nemo had some really special moments of drama and humour together and with Dory. Ed O’Neill was fabulous as Hank, this was the much-talked about character that I knew about, but didn’t expect to be as attached to as I did. Hank was grouchy and selfish, and had his own agenda, but he also had a great arc and had some really great interaction with Dory. Diane Keaton and Eugene Levy were wonderful as Jenny and Charlie, Dory’s parents. Also I loved Destiny the whale shark, but to now that she was voiced by Kaitlin Olson makes me love her more, and Ty Burrell as Bailey was so delightfully fun. But my two favourite standout characters were Fluke and Rudder the sea lions, these guys were so funny, strange and lazy, and as soon as I heard Fluke I knew it was Idris Elba, but I wasn’t sure if Rudder was Dominic West (which I now know it is). It must have been done on purpose to have two of the key actors from The Wire paired together haha.πŸ™‚ This film also looked very pretty and detailed with some great CGI and cinematography, and the music from Thomas Newman certainly had its moments where the film score got really good too.

In conclusion Finding Dory was a fun and surprisingly heartwarming adventure, and while I don’t consider it on the higher end of the Pixar film scale, at the same time it was better than a lot of Pixar’s previous recent events (excluding Inside Out).

 
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Posted by on August 17, 2016 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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PODCAST: Film Focus Episode 13 – Suicide Squad Review

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Howdy ladies and gents of the internet, as some of you may have seen, not too long ago I started a film podcast entitled Film Focus! The latest episode actually went online last Friday, but since I was short for time and had a bus weekend I’m only getting around to posting it on my blog now haha.πŸ˜›

Anyway here’s the 13th episode:

As you can see above the latest episode is on the much-talked about Suicide Squad; the latest film from DC and Warner Bros. which has created a shitstorm of controversy online because of the polarizing reviews from fans and critics, and the whole crazy situation with the fans vs critics in regards to Rotten Tomatoes and their low percentage score for the film. But I’m not gonna get into this madness, that’s a whole different conversation. Here’s the thing, I didn’t hate the film, but I didn’t love it either. I did my written review on Friday, but I had a fair amount more to say about this film that was left out the written review, and hopefully you could get a better sense of my opinion at least from a passionate/emotional standpoint. I know my opinion won’t be for everyone, but for those interested in what I have to say (that won’t bite my head off) then please check out my podcast and let me know what you think about it.πŸ™‚

As I said before in each episode I’ll cover a different topic and since I don’t have much in the way of listeners or promotion, I’m here to spread the word about my podcast.πŸ™‚

You can find my main site on Soundcloud here: https://soundcloud.com/film_focus

Or if you’re on iTunes subscribe and rate me on there: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/film-focus/id1114233892?mt=2

So if you have some spare time on your hands and would like to listen to the ramblings of a passionate/strange man then please check it out, and share it with your friends if you can. Also you have any feedback or if you’d be interested in joining on future episodes be sure to let me know, until next time, laters!πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on August 9, 2016 in Films, Media

 

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EPIC REVIEW: Summer of Sonic 2016

Howdy ladies and gents, time for another review and today I’ll be giving you a convention review as I attended Summer of Sonic in London yesterday and I thought I’d give you my thoughts on what could be described as a very memorable day.

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So for those not away, I’m a stupidly big Sonic the Hedgehog fan, have been since the 90’s with Mega Drive and the characters are the reason I’m an illustrator too, and regardless of how questionable/crappy the current games are, I still show love for the hedgehog because I’m loyal. So you have to understand, going to this convention was mandatory, especially considering that its been going since 2008 and I’ve missed each one because of a lack of funds, university or bad timing with clashing events. Luckily I threw my money at the Kickstarter for SoS not too long after it went online, and then months down the line its August and I was so hyped to finally be going to the convention, and while I was late on my first train and my second got delayed by around 30-40 mins, I finally got to the venue and that’s when the magic started.

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It sounds kind of silly/lame, but there was a certain joyful/magical energy about being in the convention hall where everything’s Sonic, from the games new and old to the merchandise to the cosplayers and so on. Plus it was just nice to be surrounded by other people who share your same passion for the blue hedgehog, most times I’ve been to MCM London Expo or London Film & Comic-Con you’ll only meet a handful of fans, and the rest will just be haters and question while you still support the franchise. But yesterday it was all love and positivity, whether you mentioned Sonic 06 and Shadow the Hedgehog, standing in long queues or could hear Sonic R music playing in the background, it was all good vibes and that’s something I appreciated.

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When it came to what I did personally I did a lot and not too much at the same time, but I’ll try to highlight some stuff below:

  1. Watching the cosplayers: As soon as I got in there was the official person in a Sonic costume taking pictures with fans and I had to be mine done obviously. But then there was all the nice little moments like seeing this awesome Perfect Chaos costume or ladies dressed as Amy Rose or Rouge the Bat. But my favourite moments was when Sonic and Chaos were having a dance off and when the guy cosplaying as Eggman picked a fight with Sonic.
  2. Playing Sonic Mania: No way in hell did I expect this game to be at this event considering how recently it was shown off to the world, but I stand from a distance and knew I had to line up. And so I queued up for what felt like an eternity as the first line was a line to get into the official line for the game!πŸ˜› But after around an hour of waiting and extreme leg pains, I got to play Sonic Mania and it was just as wonderful as I’d hoped. While I really wanted to try out Green Hill Zone for the chances made to the layout and use of elemental shields, but I had to go with Studiopolis Zone because that’s the new stuff. Mania was very pretty, the animation was super smooth, the art direction was great and most importantly the gameplay was accurate, this was classic Sonic and after messing around with my usual tricks I can say that this game is the good stuff and I can’t wait to play it in full next year.πŸ˜€
  3. Talking to fans: While waiting in lines or playing games, it was just cool to be able to talk about Sonic stuff the maximum level of nerdiness. Whether we were sharing gaming experiences, expectations for new games or talking about our favourite games or characters, it was just fun, plus I got to meet these two really awesome dudes who I got to hang out with and share some cool experiences with.πŸ™‚
  4. Meeting Duncan Gutteridge: For me growing up in the 90’s, there were a few different art style for Sonic, but none of them were as popular or notable as Duncan Gutteridge’s work. His art style made Sonic look striking, dynamic and super detailed, and he’s almost the whole reason I started drawing because I wanted to draw just like him. So getting to meet him, shake his hand, show my appreciation and buy some of his artwork was a big deal for me.
  5. Jun Senoue & Crush 40 Live Music: Firstly, it was so cool to get to hear Jun Senoue jam away to some of my favourite tunes from Sonic Adventure 1 & 2 especially when it came to Emerald Coast, Prison Island, Pyramid Cave and Metal Harbour, but the sing along to “Escape from the City” was the best. But nothing could prepare me for Crush 40, no word of a lie, I have been waiting to see these guys live since 2003. I’ve been in love with their music since I played SA 2 and SA1:DX on Gamecube, and seeing Johnny Gioeli and Jun Senoue performing together on-stage was so surreal and beautiful. If I had time to cry I probably would have. But all I was doing his shouting my head off, waving my arms and bouncing around while I heard some of my favourite Crush 40 songs. The highlights was definitely “Open Your Heart“, “His World“, “I Am… All of Me“, “Live & Learn“, “Knight of the Wind” and of course “What I’m Made Of“. It was such an incredibly interactive, beautiful and badass session!πŸ˜€πŸ˜€
  6. Meeting Mike Pollock & Takashi Izuka: I’ve watched, heard and read interviews with Mike Pollock and he’s always come across as a nice guy, but I didn’t expect to meet him in person, get my copy of Sonic Colours signed and get a picture taken with him too. The dude was SO nice, funny, modest, charming and delightful, definitely one of my favourite moments ever. And just as the convention was ending Takashi Izuka was walking amongst the fans and I was luckily enough to shake his hand and get a picture with him too, su ch a cool way to finish the convention.πŸ˜€

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In conclusion Summer of Sonic was a lot of fun, it was great to just be around all of the fans, play some games, and check out some cool live music among other things. I was glad to have gone and while I didn’t get around to doing everything I wanted to, overall it was a great session and I really hope this is isn’t the last time this convention goes down in the UK.

Well that’s my review done, so did you go to Summer of Sonic and if so what did you think of it? Also was it your first time or are you veteran of this convention? Whatever your thoughts be sure to comment below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters!πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on August 7, 2016 in Life, Media, Reviews, Video Games

 

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EPIC REVIEW: Suicide Squad

Hey there ladies and gents, time for another new review and today I’ll be talking about one of my most anticipated films of 2016 which I saw around an ago; Suicide Squad. Now for those not aware I’ve been hyped for this film since the first Comic-Con trailer, the choice of director, cast and overall marketing just made me believe that this was gonna be the DC film for me, and more so than Batman V Superman, this was the film that I had most hope for in terms of expanding the DC cinematic universe. Now unless you’ve been away from the internet then you must be aware of all the negative reviews this film has gained over the last few days, and even though I caught glimpses of it, I decided to steer clear of those reviews and see it for myself. So I watched the earliest screening in my cinema, now I’m here, and well, here’s the thing, Suicide Squad, it’s not bad, but was not the amazing film I wanted it to be.

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The story can be described as the following:

A secret government agency led by Amanda Waller recruits imprisoned supervillains to execute dangerous black ops missions and save the world from a powerful threat in exchange for clemency.

This story had some interesting elements with the formation of the villain squad and some of their individual stories, but the plot felt a little muddled and could have been a lot simpler and more streamlined. The problems begin with the story as I felt like there was a few too many moving pieces, not that it was hard to follow, more so there were a few side/sub plots that could have been shortened or gotten rid of altogether. Also the flow of the story felt off with some pacing issues and oddly edited scenes. And the overall plot was fine, but it had several elements that I’d seen in other comic books films, but not in a good way, plus I was kind of hoping for a film that was on a smaller scale and while this story was smaller than the last two DC films, at the same time it felt like it was reaching further to a global scale and that was unnecessary.

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Now let’s talk about the cast, they may be the best part about the whole film, though this ensemble cast are not properly balanced, and some get way more screen time and character development than others. Let’s start with the top-tier characters with Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Viola Davis as Amanda Waller, Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flagg and Jared Leto as The Joker. Smith was on-point, he was funny, charismatic, mean and commanding, pretty much all the reasons you like the actor and I liked what he did as Deadshot, but I felt like his character got the most screen time and character development, and some of his scenes could have been cut to give more fleshing out time to other characters. Robbie was solid as Harley Quinn, there was that right balance of playfulness, craziness and sexiness, and while I wasn’t keen on some of the backstory, the overly sexual costume and personality traits, Harley was still a lot of fun. Davis was my favourite as Amanda Waller, she was a no-nonsense, ruthless and intimidating individual and Davis brought her A-game. And Kinnaman, while I didn’t care too much about his character, this was one of the better roles I’ve liked him in. Then there’s the slightly lower tier of the cast. Jai Courtney and Jay Hernandez brought some interesting flavour to the film as Boomerang and El Diablo, Courtney was fun, hilarious and crazy, while Hernandez brought a cool seriousness to his character and ended up being one of my favourite people. And Cara Delevingne as Enchantress, I kind of liked her but at the same time her performance and character fluctuated between me liking and disliking her. As for everyone else they either alright or just there, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc was alright but we barely got to know him and he didn’t say or do too much, and finally Karen Fukuhara as Katana severely underutilized and had some cool minor character detailed, but she was wasted and it pissed me off because it felt almost as bad as what X-Men: Apocalypse did with Jubilee.

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When it comes to the presentation I wasn’t very impressed with this film. Visually the film had some decent moments with the action sequences, use of colour and CGI, but I wasn’t keen on how some of the scenes were framed, the action sequences were alright but lacked the right kind of choreography and cinematography to make them stand out, some of the lighting and editing was off and the CGI was iffy from time to time. Maybe I’m being a little harsh, but the visual material is one of the key elements I look forward to in any comic book adapted film and this film just didn’t have the wow factor. Also on the audio side of things the film score by Steven Price was a little bland and did nothing to amplify what was happening on-screen, plus there felt like there was an overabundance of music put in this film, and while I’m not against the use of popular music in films, at the same time it felt distracting and placed all over the film for the sake of it. Oh and finally, I dunno if it was just me but the sound effects really lacked impact especially when it came to the gunfire and characters getting smacked on the ground or into walls.

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In the end Suicide Squad is not a terrible film, it’s certainly not Fan4stic or X-Men Origins: Wolverine, but I wanted to love this film so badly and it pains me that another one of these non-Batman films from DC has ended up not being a complete success considering the talent involved. I feel like this will be another polarizing film, but for the sake of your curiosity/sanity, give this film a watch and decide for yourselves.

So are you going to watch Suicide Squad and if you’ve seen it, pass on your thoughts in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters!πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on August 5, 2016 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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ONE PARAGRAPH REVIEW: Midnight Special

Howdy ladies and gents people, time for another single paragraph review and today I’ll be doing a brief review on Midnight Special. Now this is a film I’d been following since the early side of last year and with the trailers and video interviewsΒ  I’d watched I got so hyped for this film. Alas I couldn’t bring my lazy ass out of the house to watch it in the cinema during my chaotic time at the airport, and I regretted that decision so badly. But since then I’ve had the film on my mind, and today I finally got around to checking it out.

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The story can be described as the following: “The film revolves around Roy and his biological son, Alton Meyer, escaping federal and local officers, after discovering that Alton has special powers.” Firstly can I just say that this film was incredible, such an engaging, dramatic and different kind of film. I mean there are elements of the story and characters you can relate to certain sci-fi films from the past, but this film found a way to tell a story that invoked the best elements of those older sci-fi films while leaving its own mark as well. There were several things I liked about the story, from its pacing, to its ability to drop you almost right in the middle of the story without having to fully explain all of the details as to how we’ve arrived at where we were with the main characters. But what I loved about the story was the mystery, we learnt that Alton was a kid with special powers, him, his dad and a friend were on the run, the government wanted him, some religious people had interest in him, and so on, yet the film never felt like it needed to hold your hand. It had its tone, sense of mystery, intrigue and wonderment, plus and moved at its own pace. And over time certain details became apparent, tension started to build and your emotional engagement grew and grew. By the final act of the film all was revealed and I’ve heard that the final revelation turned some critics off, I however found pretty fascinating and cool. And let’s talk about those performances, Michael Shannon continues to be an actor who can do no wrong for me, he played Roy Tomlin, an overly protective, yet courageous father who wanted to give his son safe and I just loved Shannon’s performance, especially how he can emote so much through his face without doing that much. Joel Edgerton continues to be great as an actor as Lucas, I also really liked Kirsten Dunst as Sarah Tomlin, Adam Driver was also pretty good as Paul Sevier, but I think Jaeden Lieberher desrves a fair amount of praise as Alton, he acted well and was very believable on the role. I also have to quickly mention the nice use of CGI, good cinematography and the film score which were lovely. In conclusion Midnight Special was such a surprisingly delightful experience, I mean I knew I’d enjoy the film, but I didn’t expect to love it so intensely, the level of mystery, intrigue and tension was wonderful and with great performances from the cast, this has easily become one of my top favourite films of 2016.

So that was my review, have you seen Midnight Special and if so what did you think of it? Please leave your comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters!πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on July 31, 2016 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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PODCAST: Film Focus Episode 12 – Jason Bourne Review

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Howdy ladies and gents of the internet, as some of you may have seen, not too long ago I started a film podcast entitled Film Focus! And so every week on either Wednesday or Friday (depending on the release of certain films), I bring you a new review or film-related discussion which will hopefully be informative and humourous.

Anyway here’s the 12th episode:

Even though you can read my written review that I did recently, but I feel like I had a little more to say about this film so that’s what the podcast episode is for. Plus if you wanted hear a super charismatic guy talking about this film then I think you’ll like this episode the most, this is probably the most energetic I’ve been since the Captain America: Civil War reviews haha.πŸ˜›

As I said before in each episode I’ll cover a different topic and since I don’t have much in the way of listeners or promotion, I’m here to spread the word about my podcast.πŸ™‚

You can find my main site on Soundcloud here: https://soundcloud.com/film_focus

Or if you’re on iTunes subscribe and rate me on there: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/film-focus/id1114233892?mt=2

So if you have some spare time on your hands and would like to listen to the ramblings of a passionate/strange man then please check it out, and share it with your friends if you can. Also you have any feedback or if you’d be interested in joining on future episodes be sure to let me know, until next time, laters!πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on July 29, 2016 in Films, Media

 

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QUICK REVIEW: Jason Bourne

Howdy people, hypersonic55 back with another review and today I get to talk about Jason Bourne, the eagerly anticipated sequel to the 2007 film; The Bourne Ultimatum. Now I’ve been hyped yet cautious about this film since it was announced a few years ago, but the duo of Paul Greengrass and Matt Damon gave me hope. So after seeing the film I’m ready to pass judgement!

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The plot for the film can be described as the following:

“A decade after his disappearance at the conclusion of The Bourne Ultimatum, Jason Bourne unexpectedly resurfaces at a time when the world is faced with unprecedented instability. At the same time, a new program, Operation Ironhand, has been created to hunt him down while he is still trying to find all the answers to his past.”

What I liked about the story was the following:

  1. It was tonally consistent with the previous films
  2. It felt relevant to modern times
  3. It gave Bourne a reason to come out of hiding and go on the hunt
  4. The world felt expanded and was layered when it came to history of Bourne and his ties to the CIA

I will admit that story took a little while to get going and didn’t have the immediate hook that I wanted, however after a key moment early on things shifted into gear and got interesting. From there the film went deep into the history of this film series, yet still presented new issues, conspiracies and dangers that relate Bourne, the CIA and the use of modern technology and privacy. There was a sense of realism, grittiness, intimacy and pressure involved, but what this film really did well was make things personal, not only for Bourne, but for the people he interacted with as well, this added a level of drama necessary for you to care about the characters and stakes involved. It has to be mentioned that this film’s tale isn’t as unique or engaging as the previous films, however if you just want to see more of the same then you’ll be fine.

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As for the cast they were all very good. Firstly there’s Matt Damon who returned to great effect as Jason Bourne, the cool thing about Bourne in this film is that he’s off the grid, but still haunted by his past and once he gets involved with Nicky and starts to discover more mysterious behind his past made for some really cool and suspenseful material. Damon felt like he never left this role as was able to be calm and collected, badass and emotionally engaging. Alicia Vikander was the next most interesting character as Heather Lee, as a CIA agent her character was very smart, resourceful and knew how to strategize to sort out the situations she faced. I didn’t expect Vikander to be as involved and as important as she was, but it was a welcome surprise and I actually liked her a lot. Tommy Lee Jones was also good as director of the CIA, Robert Dewey, this guy had an interesting part to play in this film being very self-aware, aggressive, cautious and calculated when it came to his actions with Bourne and the secret operations within the CIA. Vincent Cassel as the Asset was very enjoyable, besides being a badass assassin, he was also driven, cold and ruthless and I liked that Cassel brought a sense of energy and urgency to this character. Also seeing Julia Stiles again as Nicolette “Nicky” Parsons, it was great to see that even after she went into hiding that she was still looking into the past for information and had Bourne’s interests at heart. And finally Riz Ahmed was nice as Aaron Kalloor, his character was very charismatic, likeable and interesting in this role.

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Presentation-wise this film was pretty solid. Visually this film was great with wonderful cinematography, and awesome action sequences whether it was the insanely sweet car chases or the well-choreographed fight scenes, the visual style and flair of this series was on-point. Oh and the film score by John Powell and David Buckley was lovely, very energetic, emotional and amplified the action on-screen and brought back the familiar themes that came with the previous films.

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In the end Jason Bourne was just what I wanted it to be, a kick ass action thriller that was intriguing, intense and badass. While not as good as the previous three films, Β I still had a hell of good time with this film and I recommend it highly.

Rating: 8/10

So are you planning to see Jason Bourne and if you’ve seen it what did you think of it? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments below and I’ll see you on the next review, laters!πŸ˜€

 
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Posted by on July 29, 2016 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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