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QUICK REVIEW: The Big Short

Howdy people of the internet, time for another review and today I’ll be talking about The Big Short. This film has been talked about lot since it’s release last year and even more so once the award nominations started heading their way too, so after all that hype I really was expecting something beyond exceptional. So I saw it not too long ago and now I’m gonna pass judgement.

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

“Four denizens in the world of high-finance predict the credit and housing bubble collapse of the mid-2000s, and decide to take on the big banks for their greed and lack of foresight.”

Now I recall the days of the big financial crisis during that period and seeing all of the madness unfold on TV news, however, I never really knew how bad the situation was and what extent of it was due to human error and/or corruption within the banks and insurance companies. Luckily this film covers the subject matter in the most detailed way possible. Besides the energetic and stylish scene transitions and breaking of the fourth wall, this film covers the financial crisis vividly through conversations whether they were one-on-one, in meetings or piece-to-camera moments, all of which helped you understand what was going on with the housing, loans and companies, how there was minor problems emerging in system and why things would eventually turn out the way they did. Adam McKay and the writers did a great job of illustrating just how deep and dangerous this whole situation was and showed that for all those who gained, there were many more who lost, and the drama got pretty intense and was highlighted further because these events really happened. That being said, I did find the film a little hard to follow at times, because this was a very complex and layered subject matter the film used a lot of technical terms and abbreviations to give you context to what was happening with the big companies and the loans, and while there were moments where things were broken down to simple terms, at the same time there was so much jargon and in-depth talking that I literally had a bit of mind implosion, plus since I’ve never technically owned a house I don’t think I related to this as well as my dad (who was actually giving me some context for some of the scenes). And finally the humour, some of it worked and I did smile and chuckle, but other times I wasn’t laughing as much as everyone else.

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As for the cast, the performances were solid all around and everyone did really well, though some stood out more than others. Firstly there was Christian Bale as Dr. Michael Burry, this was a very different kind of role than I was used to seeing Bale in, but he did really well. Ryan Gosling supplied most of the charisma and energy as Jared Vennett, and while his character wasn’t too likeable, he was incredibly smart, cunning and fun to watch because Gosling was just magnetic whenever he was on-screen. And Brad Pitt (who looked a lot like a thinner Russell Crowe for some reason) was very intriguing as Ben Rickert. But it was Steve Carell as Mark Baum who was the most interesting of the four main cast members. This character was blunt, tenacious, aggressive and like the other characters, pretty smart, but he also had the most interesting and developed backstory and when things got emotional for his character you felt it. I also really enjoyed John Magaro and Finn Wittrock as Charlie Geller and Jamie Shipley as their characters really brought another interesting, funny and different perspective to this situation. Oh and finally I liked the performances from Adepero Oduye and Marisa Tomei as Kathy Tao and Cynthia Baum, I wish I could have seen more of them.

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In the end The Big Short was a very insightful and dramatic film that had an interesting story to tell and fabulous performances from everyone involved, that being said I’m not sure it clicked with me in the way that I wanted it to and I’m not sure if I’d want to watch it again.

So have you seen The Big Short and if so what did you think of it? Please be sure to comment below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀

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Posted by on February 2, 2016 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Exodus: Gods and Kings Review

Howdy ladies and gents, even though 2014 is over and I’ve already given you my top 10 films and my end of year review, I still have one more film review to give you before we transition into 2015 and it comes in the form of Exodus: Gods and Kings. Now this is a film I was actually going to give a miss because a lack of interest however near the time of release I heard some good things about the film so I decided to give it a chance. I watched it last night and now I’m ready to pass judgement.

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The story, can be described as the following:

“Epic adventure Exodus: Gods and Kings is the story of one man’s daring courage to take on the might of an empire. Using state of the art visual effects and 3D immersion, Scott brings new life to the story of the defiant leader Moses as he rises up against the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses, setting 600,000 slaves on a monumental journey of escape from Egypt and its terrifying cycle of deadly plagues.”

I thought the story had some interesting updates to the classic tale but overall it just came across as bit dull. From the beginning you are meant to connect with Moses and Ramesses so that you can understand their goals in life, but the film doesn’t give you any time to know who these people are, what kind of connection they have and why we should care. You also don’t care for Moses’ mission to become a leader who has to safe his people because he does nothing significant to be of interest and it doesn’t help that his relationship with god is strained and complicated. I don’t know, all the time I was watching the film I was just comparing it to the original story and The Prince of Egypt and wondered, “Why was this changed?”, “Why did this character do that?” “Who is this random person?” All of the changes in the film felt unnecessary, strange and done just for the sake of change rather than having a good reason for it.

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When it comes to the cast there were performances that ranged from fine to over-the-top to dull. In truth the only person that mattered was Christian Bale as Moses. Moses is the main character, however he isn’t that likeable, he has no great heroic or leader-like qualities and he has no personality either. He’s not a relatable protagonist and when he’s in trouble or is struggling you don’t care because he’s just a bit meh. Bale seems like the only person actually trying to put on a show in this film. Joel Edgerton as Ramesses II, my god, what a bore. This is not the cool character from the Dreamworks animation, instead what we have here is a spoilt brat who has no redeeming features, is not relatable and seems to have a stick up his ass all the time. Edgerton is better actor than this and I feel like this is the worst film I’ve seen him in. John Turturro as Seti I was actually alright, after seeing the horrible performances in Michael Bay’s Transformers films, he was very reserved, calm and quite nice. Aaron Paul as Joshua, it was a bit bizarre to see Paul in a film like this, he was alright but incredibly wasted. Ben Kingsley was decent as Nun but he wasn’t in the film enough to be that relevant. Ben Mendelsohn was invisible as Hegep. Sigourney Weaver as Tuya, all I can say is what a waste of a role. Weaver is just there to stand around and say a few lines, her character could have been played by anyone or written out of the film entirely and it would not have made any difference to the story. What a waste. MarĂ­a Valverde was okay as Zipporah, but she barely had enough screen time to be a fully developed character and whenever she was around she was boring as hell.

The presentation was probably the best thing to come out this film. The CGI is very detailed, realistic, epic and used to great effect in the huge action sequences. The music by Alberto Iglesias is pretty good too, I did like the way it had a certain level of epicness and drama to it.

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In conclusion Exodus: Gods and Kings is serviceable film but an unnecessary one. For all of its grand visual flair it doesn’t have a story that’s interesting or engaging enough for me to care. The characters are dull and forgettable, the pacing is slow and there are chucks of details in the story that get completely omitted for no reason.

Rating: 5/10

So what did you think of Exodus: Gods and Kings? Did you like it, hate it or thought it was alright? Also how do you feel it compares to the original source material? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to leave them in the comments section below and I’ll see ya in the new year! Laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on December 31, 2014 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Out of the Furnace Review

Hello again ladies and gents, I’ve got another film review for you. So after two other films in the cinema, the final one I watched was Out of the Furnace, a film I’d been wanting to see just because of the hype surrounding Christian Bale and Casey Affleck’s performances. I went in with fluctuating expectations, so was it good or not? Read on and find out.

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So the story goes like this:

“Russell and his younger brother Rodney live in the economically-depressed Rust Belt, and have always dreamed of escaping and finding better lives. But when a cruel twist of fate lands Russell in prison, his brother becomes involved with one of the most violent and ruthless crime rings in the Northeast – a mistake that will cost him everything. Once released, Russell must choose between his own freedom, or risk it all to seek justice for his brother.”

Before I continue I just want to say that the first scene in this film is awesome, its terrifying, but awesome nevertheless, okay moving on. I really liked the story and thought that it was very interesting. I liked the relationship between the Baze brothers and their individual stories and how they progress. The story of this film was pretty dramatic, graphic and depressing, part of that reason is not only the character situations but also because of the locations. Russell and Rodney’s story takes place in Crap Town, that’s what I’m calling this place because its dull, sad and not much is going on and it doesn’t feel like people can amount to anything without doing legit work. But if you think that’s bad just wait til you see Shitsville, another location where other bad things take place which is even worse than the last place full of savages and nutjobs doing horrible things. This film reminded me a lot of Prisoners, but whereas that film made me feel uncomfortable and sad, this one gave me a more satisfying story and conclusion.

DF-00697.CR2When it comes to the cast there is a really impressive cast on show and while not everyone is utilized fully, the ones that do stand out are very good. Christian Bale as Russell Baze is great, Russell is a man who is very devoted to his family and has a lot to take care of, but things go from bad to worst after an accident which causes him to lose so many precious things in his life. Bale continues to be a very cool actor as he commits to this role and I like his emotional range. The performance that may overshadow Bale is Casey Affleck as Rodney Baze, Jr., I’ve not seen too many films with Casey in them, but I am now aware that he is an actor I should be paying attention to due to his stellar performance in this film which is very powerful and realistic. At first you question the man’s actions but when you realize what he’s been through and know what’s going on in his head, you begin to understand him and hope that he gets himself together for the sake of not only himself but his family.

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Though the stand out person in this film for me Woody Harrelson as Harlan DeGroat. Bloody hell, what a beast! Harlan is such a brute, totally messed up and unpredictable. When he’s around people you don’t know what’s gonna happen and you fear for their lives. I’ve only become a fan of Harrelson in recent years but seeing him in this film makes me wish I’d noticed him years ago, the man is SO good and easily stole the screen time for others. Zoe Saldana as Lena Warren was pretty good, I liked her and she can do crying moments very well. I also like Willem Dafoe as John Petty, he was a typical business man, very serious though he did have some form of compassion for the people he worked with. Forest Whitaker was decent as Wesley Barnes but he wasn’t in the film as much as I thought he’d be. And Sam Shepard as Gerald “Red” Baze, he didn’t move that much but he was good in the film too.

out-of-the-furnace01In conclusion Out of the Furnace is a great dramatic thriller with awesome performances from the cast and the story is interesting with grim atmosphere. While I wasn’t totally satisfied with the way the story progressed and the over depressing aura of the film, it is still really good and I recommend it.

Rating: 8/10 (Great performances make this worth a watch)

So have you seen or are going to see Out of the Furnace? Whatever your thoughts are leave them in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review yo! 😀

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2014 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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American Hustle Review

Yo yo ladies and gents, time to FINALLY review American Hustle! I know this review is a lot later than I anticipated, but for the longest time I put off watching this film even though I really wanted to see it as soon as it came out. But after all the faffing around I saw it at the cinema and I’m ready yo give my thoughts.

The story is loosely based on the FBI ABSCAM operation of the late 1970s and early ’80s, where two con artists who are forced by an FBI agent to set up an elaborate sting operation on corrupt politicians, including the mayor of Camden, New Jersey.

I thought the story was decent but not as good as I thought it’d be. It started out well and had a non-linear style of storytelling (a form of storytelling that I think loads of films are taking on these days) and from there we’re introduced to characters and plot elements and see how some of these individual stories eventually tie into each other. At its core the films about people conning each other. Lies and deceit is the name of the game. Normally I’m really into this kind of story in film stories, but in this film into gets a bit to convoluted for my liking and takes a bit too long for actions to play out. I actually looked at the time on my phone and that RARELY happens. by the time the film ended I just felt average and that’s massive difference from the joyful feeling I felt when I left Silver Linings Playbook.

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It’s really the cast that make the film for me as they bring these characters to life and make them worth caring about. Let’s start with Christian Bale as Irving Rosenfeld. I’ve heard people talk shit about Bale and some say he can’t act, well to them I say bullshit! I swear he’s like a frigging chameleon and goes to highest efforts to fit into his roles and that is clearly apparent here as he’s fat, corrupt, in love, but also got emotional issues to deal with involving is former and current love interests and his connect to the mayor. I thought Bale’s performance was great. Bradley Cooper as FBI Agent Richard “Richie” DiMaso was pretty great too, I’ve definitely become more a Bradley Cooper fan over the last 2 years and in this film he’s great as this FBI guy who strives for success and loves to be control and freaks out when he isn’t. Seeing Cooper lose his cool and go mental was wonderful and he does aggression very well. Amy Adams as Sydney Prosser / Lady Edith Greensly was pretty good. There was something incredibly alluring about her (it was probably those revealing outfits), I liked her backstory and her chemistry with Bale was great. The only thing iffy about her was the accent which was sometimes good and at other points very questionable. While not Adams’ best role, she was still really good.

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Jeremy Renner as Mayor Carmine Polito was actually my favourite character purely because he was practically the most innocent member of the main cast, he was just a nice guy, loved by all, trying to do right by the people of his city but got caught up this world of lies and corruption. Renner is an actor who is always up and down for me in films, he’s a good actor, no doubt about it, but sometimes his roles can make him come across as a bit flat. In this film I loved him, just his charisma, the accent his hair, everything was just nice and I think this is my favourite role I’ve seen him in. And then there’s Jennifer Lawrence as Rosalyn Rosenfeld, I’m gonna get this out there first, I really disliked her character. So annoying, unbearable and it doesn’t that I’ve known people like that so when people get annoyed in the film by her actions I can sympathise. That being said Lawrence turned in another good performance with some funny scenes and she continues to do no wrong in the world of film.

Other people I feel I should mention is my two men from Boardwalk Empire; Jack Huston (Richard Harrow) as Pete Musane and Shea Whigham (Eli Thompson) as Carl Elway. Huston was great and had a really interesting, subtle and yet aggressive part to play and Whigham’s character was really funky-looking and definitely a different kind of role for him but was really enjoyable.

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In conclusion American Hustle is a good film but nowhere near as good as some critics and other people are making it out to be. The amazing performances from the cast is what really sells the film and makes it worth watching. The word that comes to mind is “disappointed” and while I can still recommend this film, I can’t say that I walked out of the film loving it the way I wanted to.

Rating: 7/10 (A good film only elevated by the incredible of the cast)

So what did you think of American Hustle? Were you in love with it or did you think like me that it wasn’t as amazing as some have made it out to be? Whatever your thoughts drop them below and let me know. Until the next time, I’ll catch ya later! 😀

 
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Posted by on January 14, 2014 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Month of Superhero Film Reviews: The Dark Knight

Howdy ladies and gentlemen and welcome to Day #26 of my Month of Superhero Film Reviews! During this month I’ll be reviewing of some of the best and worst comic book adapted films. Okay so today we conclude our review of Batman films with one of the most overrated films in recent history, The Dark Knight.

Now I’m gonna talk about a film I don’t like to discuss with most people. Why? Because everyone bums the hell out of this film like it is the best thing since sliced bread and in my opinion it really isn’t. Fans and critics went made in 2008 when this film released and it has been hailed for changing the comic book superhero genre since. I saw the film when it released and I thought it was good, but not nearly as godly as people made it out to be. Ever since then I’ve watched the film a few times but my views still haven’t changed. So now in 2013 I’m revisiting the film again, has my opinion changed? Read on and find out.

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Taking place after the events in Batman Begins, Batman raises the stakes in his war on crime. With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon and District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman sets out to dismantle the remaining criminal organizations that plague the city streets. The partnership proves to be effective, but they soon find themselves prey to a reign of chaos unleashed by a rising criminal mastermind known to the terrified citizens of Gotham as The Joker.

The story was pretty interesting for the most part but not perfect though. I like the way this film continues on from the last with its visual and verbal references, but I also like how the story progresses and gets more complex and higher in stakes. the introduction of the Joker makes for some very dramatic, suspenseful and unpredictable situations that have intriguing results. There’s a lot of interesting themes about corruption, morality, justice and injustice and nature vs. nature, and there’s all beautifully explained in the film. I think one of the reasons I’m not keen on the film is because there’s just a lot of aspects that I don’t care about, when the film isn’t focused on Batman or the Joker, then my interest fades, plus sometimes the film feels long and tedious. I guess the only reason I don’t like this film is because it doesn’t really feel like a comic book film, it feels more like a long thriller film with just a few comic book elements thrown in. And while that may work for most film audiences, for me who is a nerd and a fan of the more comic book side of Batman, this film just feels lacking.

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Now let’s talk about the cast who do a good job at bringing these characters to life for the most part. Christian Bale was still pretty good as Bruce Wayne, I feel like his character went through hell in this film as he had to fight the terrors of Gotham while trying to keep himself intact and eventually get out the crime fighting life and move on with Rachel. But as Batman, Bale was still dodgy. He is intimidating, but his voice is still terrible and over the course of the film gets worse. Michael Caine is still awesome as Alfred, Caine is just a great actor and he shows us his talents as Bruce’s trusted butler who helps Bruce and his alter ego, offering advice and being funny at times.

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But let’s talk about the main reason this film works and that is Heath Ledger as the Joker. This version of the Joker is just a psychopath, he is a nutcase with a twisted sense of humour and morality and he does bad things just to see will happen. I remember seeing this film in the cinema and remembering that this is why I liked the film so much and that rule still applies today. Ledger is just magnetic in this role, every time he’s on-screen all attention is on him and his charisma  and powerful persona makes him amazing to watch. He is crazy and I love it, and while I can’t say it’s my favourite interpretation of the character (That is still Mark Hamill), this in my opinion is way more interesting and captivating than Jack Nicholson’s version.

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Also Gary Oldman as James Gordon is great. Oldman’s role is more expanded than before and we get to see his character pushed to the forefront of the story. Gordon has to deal with his alliance to Batman and Harvey Dent as well as the Joker’s crazy actions. I just love how much more screen time Gordon got and how he ascended to the role as police commissioner. As for Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent/Two-Face I thought he was pretty cool. As Dent Eckhart was nice as the district attorney who really wanted to clean up Gotham and do justice the right way. Eventually Dent gets corrupted and goes on the path of revenge as Two-Face and I liked his interpretation of the character as he was corrupt, on-edge and shell of his former self. Maggie Gyllenhaal as Rachel Dawes was nice and I found her version of the character to be more engaging and likeable than Katie Holmes. You could see that even though Rachel had moved on with Harvey Dent, that she still feelings for Bruce and because of his life as Batman it made things a great more complicated. And lastly Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox is still badass, I just like how he keeps supplying Bruce with all his gadgets for his duties as Batman.

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Now let’s talk about the presentation, visually the film is pretty impressive, the cinematography is wonderful, the presentation of the action and Batman’s fight scenes is a hell of a lot better and the editing is much smoother than before. I also like the special effects applied to Aaron Eckhart after he becomes Two Face too. The only  thing I wasn’t keen on was the fact that Gotham City lost its visual style from the first film and just adopted a very normal look in this film which I just didn’t agree with. As for the soundtrack by James Newton Howard and Hans Zimmer it is hella cool. The two basically take the themes from the first film and build upon them while introducing new themes too. The music is loud, dramatic, suspenseful and versatile and it really adds to the scenes where it is used.

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And lastly how does it compare to the comics? When it comes to Batman I’ve only read a few comics, most of my knowledge comes from years of watching Batman cartoons and research online. Well since Christopher Nolan’s Batman universe is more realistic, several things were updated or modified to work in the real world. As such many things have a more grounded approach. For example the Joker no longer has bleached skin and instead has paint and scars on his face and Two-Face instead of having acid on his face and a split personality, his face is burnt away in a fire.

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So to conclude The Dark Knight is still a great film and is a wonderful piece of material from director Christopher Nolan. It has a story that has a lot of interesting themes and thriller-esque elements and with a fabulous central performance from Heath Ledger it is a film worth watching. That being said, I still don’t think its the best comic book film ever made, it strays too far from the source material and almost doesn’t feel like a superhero/comic book film at all and there’s just a few small things that I don’t agree with. Now loads of people think I’m crazy because of my views on this film and I’ll continue to fight my corner until the end of time, but as it stands The Dark Knights is awesome, but not as extraordinary as a lot of fans and critics make it out to be.

Rating: 8/10 (A fine Batman film, but not as godly as many make it out to be)

So there’s my review people, only 4 more to go! So have you seen The Dark Knight and if so what are your thoughts on it? Drop me a comment and let me know your thoughts yo! Come back tomorrow and I’ll have a new film review online, until then peace out!

 
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Posted by on June 26, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Month of Superhero Film Reviews: Batman Begins

Howdy ladies and gentlemen and welcome to Day #25 of my Month of Superhero Film Reviews! During this month I’ll be reviewing of some of the best and worst comic book adapted films. Alrighty then, we’ve talked about both of the Tim Burton Batman films, we’ve also talked about the ONLY Joel Schumacher that matters, so we’re skipping ahead to 2005 with the awesome Batman Begins.

Okay now we’re talking. I remember not being initially interested in this film at all due to its whole dark and realistic approach and lack of traditional Batman comic source material. But then I gave the film a chance around 2 or 3 years later and I found out that I really liked it. The film was definitely different and there were a number of things I wasn’t keen on but otherwise it was a solid film which I appreciated. So its been a while since I’ve seen it last time and now that I’ve watched it again has my opinion changed? Read on to find out.

So the plot in this film tells the origin story of the Bruce Wayne from his fear of bats to the death of his parents to his training with the League of shadows to his eventual transformation into the hero known as Batman. In this film Batman has to deal with the villain Scarecrow and the much larger threat in the form of Ra’s al Ghul and his plot to destroy Gotham City.

The story was pretty cool. Even though I am a very adamant comic book fan, the more realistic, dark and gritty tone really worked thanks to the great script and good direction from Christopher Nolan. Everything works in a more practical and realistic fashion, though there are comic book elements implemented as well and I think they’re incorporated nicely. The reason I liked the story so much was due to Bruce’s origin story, I don’t think there’s been a Batman film to date that’s gone this deep into Batman’s life prior to donning the suit. We get to see his childhood, his training and the creation of his lair, suit, weaponry and so on. I also like the part of the plot involving Ra’s al Ghul and the League of Shadows plan to destroy Gotham, I thought it was pretty cool and hardcore. I think my only issues with the film is the fact that it wasn’t as comic book-esque as I had hoped, Batman is character I’ve always enjoyed in the animated TV shows and to see all of the source material changed and modified to work in the real world just didn’t gel with me at times during this film.

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Now let’s talk about the cast who do a good job at bringing these characters to life for the most part. So let’s start with Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne/Batman. I do like Bale’s portrayal of Bruce Wayne, I think he gives us the most accurate version of the character from the comics and his journey through this film is pretty cool and much more detailed than any other Batman film before it. However I can’t say that Bale makes a good Batman though. Bale as Batman is just terrible due to one key factor… His voice. I understand that Batman is different from Bruce Wayne and needs a different voice, however Batman in this film sounds insanely stupid! He’s all gruff, gravelly and as a lot of people have been saying online, sounds like he has throat cancer. Though it does make for some unintentionally funny lines of dialogue.

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Then we have Michael Caine as Alfred Pennyworth. I do love Sir Michael Caine and I think this is the first film where I really became accustomed to him as an actor. Caine’s version of Alfred feels like he has more of a backstory and feels like he has more of an active role in Bruce’s life after he becomes Batman. You can see that Alfred definitely care for Bruce and wants to help him out, but he also isn’t afraid to speak his mind and voice concern when dangerous situations look like they’ll occur. Katie Holmes as Rachel Dawes was where I personally found the weak link in the film. Don’t get me wrong she’s not that bad in the film, but she’s not that great either. Dawes is a character made for film and has no relation to the comics and as a love interest for Bruce I just didn’t care because that is the one element in superhero films that I can deal without. Also Gary Oldman as James Gordon was cool, again like Michael Caine’s Alfred I feel like Oldman’s Gordon had a more active role than his predecessor and left a better lasting impression on me. Oldman is a fine actor and while his character isn’t as big as he is in the sequels he’s still pretty cool here.

Then we have our first villain in the form of Liam Neeson as Henri Ducard. Neeson is one of the most awesome actors out there and I loved his character in this film how he becomes Bruce’s mentor only to turn out to be the bad guy later on down the line. You can see that Ducard has much mystery surrounding his character and that as good as he may seem he has ulterior motives and I thought Neeson did great in the role and made the character magnetic on-screen. As for villain number two who was Cillian Murphy as Dr. Jonathan Crane/Scarecrow we was different, his character was very clever, questionable and strange and as the Scarecrow he was even funkier using his toxins to make people freak out and hallucinate. But as good as he was I felt like he could have been better and when he is taken out it is done in the most anti climatic way.

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Tom Wilkinson makes for a cool Mafia boss as Carmine Falcone, he’s an intimidating bastard who plays a small part in the larger picture of evil plans going down in the film and Wilkinson was good. And lastly Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox was just the coolest guy ever. He’s a guy that works at Wayne Enterprises but also supplies Bruce with all his gear necessary for his missions. I like the relationship that Bruce and Lucius start in this film and since the character is played by Morgan Freeman you can’t really complain can you?

Now let’s talk about the presentation. Visually the film is nice I like look of Gotham City because it is so dark, has great lighting and has a unique colour palette that really helps show off how ugly and distinguishing the city is. I also like a lot of the action sequences in this film, Batman’s attack sequences are nicely pulled off though it is badly shot and edited at times because you can’t really see what’s going on. As for the soundtrack by James Newton Howard and Hans Zimmer its pretty good, the score that they create while it doesn’t have that same level of epicness and gravitas that Danny Elfman’s scores did back in the Tim Burton’s films, it does have a main theme that sounds pretty beastly and overall the soundtrack amplifies the action in the film very well.

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And lastly how does it compare to the comics? When it comes to Batman I’ve only read a few comics, most of my knowledge comes from years of watching Batman cartoons and research online. I think everything in this film is modified to work in the real world so characters, vehicles and weapons work in a more practical and realistic manner. There are a few comic book elements retained like the death of Bruce’s parents and his fear of bats and his martial arts skills too. I’m not too familiar with the villains of the films so I can’t talk about them. Other than that everything else is either new or changed for film purposes.

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So to conclude Batman Begins is a pretty cool film. A lot of people these days say that this film is the weakest element in The Dark Knight Trilogy but I think that is unfair as it was the film that created the foundation for the sequels to build on. This film created a new, dark and realistic world for Batman and redefined the character with much stronger storytelling, themes, characters and wonderful presentation. The film does indeed have problems and I don’t love it as much as I did before, but out of all the three Batman origins we’ve had so far this is my favourite and I recommend the film highly.

Rating: 7.5/10 (It’s dark, gritty and different but it’s still hella good!)

So there’s my review people, and now we’ve reached the FINAL 5 FILMS! WOOOO! So have you seen Batman Begins and if so what are your thoughts on it? Drop me a comment and let me know your thoughts yo! Come back tomorrow and I’ll have a new film review online, until then peace out!

 
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Posted by on June 25, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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The Dark Knight Rises Review

Good day to you ladies and gentlemen and welcome to another film review. Today’s review will be on the film that we’ve all been waiting for, the epic conclusion to the Christopher Nolan Batman trilogy of films; The Dark Knight Rises.

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Now like I said in my Films I’m Looking Forward to in 2012 segment on The Dark Knight Rises is there really any need for me to talk about how big this film is? Do I really need to try and convince you to see this film? Chances are you’ve already seen it or are going to watch it. Everybody knows about The Dark Knight Rises and the hype for this film leading up to its release has been ridiculously high. So the real question is; after all this time has Christopher Nolan delivered a satisfying conclusion to his Batman trilogy? Well I can say without a doubt that the answer to that question is a big fat YES! The Dark Knight Rises is FRIGGING AWESOME! FACT.

Plot

So what’s the story in TDKR? Well the film takes place 8 years after the events of TDK and it seems like Gotham City has been in a state of peace for a while thanks to the Dent Act, that is until a new theat appears on the scene in the shape of Bane. Despite his tarnished reputation after the events of TDK, in which he took the rap for Dent’s crimes, Batman feels compelled to intervene to assist the city and its police force which is struggling to cope with Bane’s plans to destroy the city.

The plot of TDKR is deep, dark, elaborate and has many layers to it. I found the story in this film to be very deep and involving from start to finish. I loved how the film handled the events from The Dark Knight and still made them relevant in this film, and it was also impressive how the film sets up all of these new characters along with some of the more established people from the previous two films and make them all come together and have a purpose. The plot as a whole I prefered to the TDK, while the TDK did have a lot to like in terms of corruption, chaos and moral and ethical decisions that had to be made I think I liked TDKR more because it was on a larger scale, with greater stakes and we had a villain that was ready to sink Gotham city into the ground. Everything about TDKR just screams better to me. Granted that the plot does take a little while to get going in the first act because of the new characters and plot points to establish, but once the film gets into the swing of things it is awesome.

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Characters

Now let’s take about the characters of TDKR and while there are many, I feel like I will only talk about the 3 main characters; Batman, Bane and Catwoman and then mention any other relevant people afterwards. But just to let you know now the standout performances come from Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Michael Caine and Anne Hathaway as their performances really did resonate with me and stayed with me after the film ended.

Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne/Batman was actually really good in this film and I think it is his finest performance in The Dark Knight Trilogy. Before this film I thought he had made a decent Bruce Wayne, but I was never overly fussed, nor had I ever been attached to his character, but his performance really won me over in TDKR due to the circumstances that take place in the film, the journey Bruce/Batman has to go on and what that does to him physically and mentally. While in the previous two films we’ve seen Bruce go through a lot, I don’t think any amount of training could prepare him for what happens in TDKR. I mean he’s been out of the game as Batman for 8 years and has become a recluse, but when Bane is on scene he has to become Batman once again to save Gotham. And I found it really interesting the way Bruce had to get back into swing of things as Batman, how he had to get into the right mindset and physical groove for his encounters with Bane. Bale brought his A-game in this film and for the first time in this trilogy I really liked his version of both Bruce and Batman. There are some really deep and emotional moments with this character and you go through it all with him over the course of the film as he falls from grace and has to build himself back up again.

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Let’s talk about Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle/Catwoman. I am just going to say it right now, Anne Hathaway kicked ass as Catwoman. The interesting think about her character was her history and her motives for doing what she does, sure she is a thief living on the wrong side of the law but she has a reason for doing it and I love how Catwoman was relevant to the main plot too. Ms. Hathaway brings the smart, cunning and sexy nature of Catwoman from the comics to the big screen, it is easy to get attached to her to her character because Hathaway portrays her in such a great way and another thing Hathaway got right was the fighting elements too. She kicks so much ass in this film and I was really impressed by Hathaway, I think this is her best role in any film ever. And yes she looks sexy as hell in that cat suit yo! 😀 Now let’s move onto Tom Hardy as Bane. Simply put, he killed it as Bane. Bane was a very captivating character and a great villain to watch in this film. He is an intelligent, calculated and menacing terrorist leader who just from looking at his face you know is just badass. Tom Hardy brings a great deal of tenacity, intensity and realism to his role and he creates this presence on-screen so when you see him you know that something’s gonna go down. Whether it’s the intense look in his eyes that’ll make you quake in fear or the way in which he delivers dialogue that’ll shit your pants, Bane is just a beast of a guy. What I love about Bane is that he is a villain with a mission, who has loads of followers willing to do his bidding, but he also isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty and get in on the action himself.

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Outside of Batman, Bane and Catwoman there are few other notable characters that made this film work, like Alfred. Michael Caine in The Dark Knight Trilogy has always been one of the key aspects of what makes Nolan’s films work, and while he doesn’t have as much screen time as I would have liked when he is on-screen it matters. He is still the reliable butler supporting Bruce throughout all of his endeavours, but in this film when Bruce is clearly up against a force far beyond his physical and mental capabilities he voice concern for Bruce’s safety and when he delivers his lines in this film it is so heartfelt and emotional that you can’t help but well up and maybe shed a tear for the old man. Caine is still incredible as Alfred and his character in this film has never spoken truer words. Another notable character whose relevance in this trilogy of films is massive is Gary Oldman as Commissioner James Gordon. It was great to see his character dealing with the events of TDK and feeling guilty for covering up the death of Harvey Dent, but what is also more interesting is when the city falls into chaos and how he deals with it as he spring into action. I was glad to see the return of Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox, I was interested to see where his character would go after TDK and I was glad to see how his character had changed since the last film and how he was relevant in this film too. And lastly Joseph Gordon-Levitt as John Blake was fantastic, Blake was an intelligent and self-aware police officer who plays a big part in the film and he had some great scenes with Cruce Wayne and Commissioner Gordon, he was agreat addition to an already stellar cast and I believe Joseph Gordon-Levitt was almost as great as he was in Inception with the way he handled his character in this film.

There is a great deal of interesting interaction between different characters too whether it be the character dynamic will work between Batman and Catwoman or the confrontation between Batman and Bane or the more intimate moments between Bruce and Alfred or the scenes with Commissioner Gordon and John Blake. Most of the cast members all interact with each other at one point or another and it is just lovely to see how they bounce off of each other. The key thing that has my interest in the fight between Batman and Bane, finally we’re going to get a big one-on-one fight with Batman and another enemy which is totally necessary in my opinion.

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Presentation

Visually the film is great, everything looks stunning and while the small special effects used on stuff like The Bat look good, the main reason TDKR succeeds its down to the cinematography. The way the film is shot is simply amazing, so many times I was just taking in all of the beautiful shots of the city and those wonderfully shot scenes and sequences in the winter. Never before has a film with so little CGI and special effects ever impressed me so much. I just love how real everything is and how much practical effects they used on the film, the visual side of TDKR is truly a sight to behold. Also outside of the intimate scenes with the main characters there are some absurdly cool scenes of destruction and chaos going down. Football fields crumble, buildings are demolished, explosions happen in many locations and mass panic ensues. TDKR also gives us the best fight scenes in the entire trilogy, whether it be Catwoman throwing down against her adversaries or the incredible fight scenes between Batman and Bane. Now most Batman films seem to be lacking in the fighting department because Batman’s never been a proper fight before, but in this film the fight scenes are not only good, they are hella good! They are well-filmed, well-choreography and they’re shot in some really interesting and beautiful ways and the music that comes with these scenes only amplifies the awesomeness by 100%!

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The soundtrack by Hans Zimmer is great. The previous soundtracks done by Zimmer and James Newton Howard in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight have been damn good, but this soundtrack is my favourite so far. This soundtrack captivated me deeply (much like when I saw Inception). Zimmer’s work is simply incredible, it is a combination of the two previous Batman films with some new themes brought into the mix for this third film. It was soft and touching in the emotional scenes or it can be loud and insane in the tense action scenes. I think my favourite track was “Gotham’s Reckoning“, it builds from the beginning to end and just becomes this ferocious and chaotic beast of a song.

Obviously there is another big question that needs to answered; is The Dark Knight Rises better than The Avengers? For me that is a tough call, I fell in love with The Avengers and watched it 4 times in the cinema, while I’ve only seen TDKR once, but I feel that I would still put The Avengers ahead of TDKR because it was everything I wanted and more. The Avengers for me was the definitive version of what a comic book film should be while TDKR gives a realistic form of a comic book film.

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Conclusion

So in conclusion The Dark Knight Rises wasn’t just great, it was amazing. To be honest I was just expecting a film that was just going to be good but not as good as The Dark Knight, but luckily the film exceeded any expectations I had of it. It was big, loud and proud. This was my favourite of the Christopher Nolan films because it gave me everything I had wanted from a Batman film; a dramatic story with amazing dialogue, deep and interesting characters, brilliant, brutal and well-choreographed fight scenes, incredible cinematography and a fantastic soundtrack. While the film does a few nitpicky issues and many may argue that TDK is still the best Batman film around, I however beg to differ. This is my favourite Batman film, I was hooked from beginning to end and I was thoroughly satisfied with the end result. I REALLY WANT TO BAG TO SEE IT RIGHT NOW! I feel gutted for the person who has to reboot the Batman film franchise, he’s got a tought act to follow.

Rating: 8.5/10

 
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Posted by on July 22, 2012 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Films I’m Looking Forward to in 2012: The Dark Knight Rises

Howdy ladies and gents and welcome to another instalment of Films I’m Looking Forward to in 2012. And today’s post will be on what could be described as the most anticipated film of not only the summer, but of the whole year; The Dark Knight Rises.

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Now is there really any need for me to talk about how big this film is? Do I really need to try and convince you as a person to see this film? Chances are you already know about The Dark Knight Rises and are ridiculously hyped for it. But there are a number of people in the world that aren’t that well-informed or in some strange cases may not even care about this upcoming Batman film, so for those people this blog post is gonna be about the info surrounding the film, why I’m hyped for it and why you should see it when it comes out in July.

Now TDKR is the third installment in the series of Batman films directed by the awesomeness that’s Christopher Nolan (director of Memento, The Prestige & Inception). First we had Batman Begins in 2005, which was the first Batman film since the disgusting piece of work that was Batman & Robin from 1997. Luckily Batman Begins was a solid film that was dark, gritty and make Batman seem pretty cool again. That film also introduced us to a more realistic take on the superhero genre, Nolan’s take on Batman was more like a realistic thriller with superhero elements attached to it in my opinion. While Batman Begins was good, it did have it’s fair share of problems like: Christian Bale’s raspy Batman voice, horribly messy fight scenes, the tumbler and the poor use of the villain Scarecrow. Overall though Batman Begins was very successful both financially and critically and the fans became obsessed and wanted another one…

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The film that started this crazy train of Batman madness. A good entry to this Batman trilogy.

So then wait three years down the line, it’s 2008 and we were given what many comic book fans and critics consider to be the best comic book film in existence, The Dark Knight. Before this film came out, the hype for TDK was insane. No seriously it was like the world was going to blow up. The stakes were higher, the scale was bigger and most importantly we had Batman’s best and most recognisable villain in there too, The Joker. The marketing for this film was very well crafted. The viral campaigns were so stylish and the trailers for the film looked insane and was so much deeper, creepier, darker and more realistic than ever. Unfortunately actor Heath Ledger who portrayed the Joker in the film died 6 months prior to the film’s release which shocked man people around the world, that in turn did make more people pay attention to the film due to the media’s coverage of Mr. Ledger’s death and how he was attached to TDK. So anyways The Dark Knight eventually came out in July 2008 and it blew up at the cinema. It was the hottest film of that summer and of that year. It was a hell of a lot better than Batman Begins, there was deeper character development, better fight scenes, wonderful cinematography, a fabulous soundtrack and an incredibly dense and interesting story. Though the best part of the film really was the Joker, he really just stole show in the film. Heath Ledger gave us a dark, twisted and chaotic version of the character who took inspiration from the comics while still offering up something new. Every scene he was in was incredible. It truly was Heath Ledger’s best performance in my opinion. The film blew up as the box office and broke so many damn records, some of which have yet to be broken to this day. For me TDK is a great film, though it’s a tad overhyped for my liking. Some things were still off for me like: Bale’s gruff and raspy Batman voice,  the film’s pace sort of dragged at times and the realistic setting as good as it was it started to feel less like a Batman film and more of a realistic thriller with Batman characters lurking around in it. And I also thought that TDK lacked a bit of the charm that came with Batman Begins too. But that’s just my opinion.

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The film that’s seen by many as the best superhero film in existence.

So after the success of The Dark Knight how do you follow that up? By being Christopher Nolan and busting out another film in 2012, that’s how! After TDK many fans of the film wondered how would one honestly follow-up a film like that when you’ve used the most iconic villain and put Bruce Wayne/Batman through a great deal of pain already. Well, somehow the production moved ahead, we found out that the two main new characters would be Bane and Catwoman and Chris Nolan teamed up with several of his previous collaborators in order to craft what would be his final Batman film.

Now I ain’t gonna lie ladies and gents, as much as I like Batman and have a great love for the many animated TV shows over the years, I can’t say that much of a big Batman fan overall. Technically speaking I’m a Marvel fan, more so than DC. So when it comes to big superhero films I know everything when it comes to Marvel and then casually look at DC-based stuff. So in turn that’s why I’ve been more interested in The Avengers and The Amazing Spider-Man, and that’s also the reason why’s there’s much more information on those films then the amount of TDKR.

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Anyways now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, what’s the story of this film gonna be? Well it apparently takes place 8 years after TDK and it seems like Gotham City has been in a state of peace for a while, that is until two new villains show up on the scene in the shape of Bane and Selina Kyle (aka Catwoman). Batman must then come back into action and save the city from being destroyed. To be honest from what’s been shown in the full-length trailers, this film looks like it’s going to be big and on a much bigger scale than the previous film. I thought that The Dark Knight was the height of epicness that could be reached in Nolan’s Batman films and yet here we see in this film that the stakes are higher, the level of destruction going on is insane and it seems like Batman might actually be defeated or even worse… Killed. I found it interesting back in the early casting days that a few members from Inception was gonna be joining the cast of TDKR in the form of Tom Hardy, Marion Cotillard and Joseph Gordon-Levitt. And since we’re on the subject of casting I guess now would be as a good a time as any to talk about the cast of this film.

So let’s start with Tom Hardy as Bane because I’m always more interested in the villains then I am in Batman. Now I remembered when he was signed on to the big bad villain role and most of us who had watched either Inception or Bronson knew what the deal was with Hardy so we knew we had a good actor at the ready. Now when the first few pictures came out, a good number of fans were complaining that he was too small and that he needed to look more in-lin with the comic book material. Though you’d think a lot of them would have learned that Chris Nolan’s Batman world is much more realistic than those of the conventional comic book movies so there are bound to be liberties taken with character design. And let’s remember that a great deal of stuff from Nolan’s Batman films only bare small resemblance to their source material. But anyway moving on, I remember when the first trailer came out and Bane’s voice was soooooo muffled and I had to listen really carefully to understand him and that was a major factor with all the people who saw that 6-minute preview of the film back in December. Luckily by the time the latest trailer came out Bane was as clear as day and he looked and sounded like a badass. He just seems like a big badass man of destruction. Not only is he more than a match for Batman himself, but he also seems like a calculated man ready to bring a new type of chaos in a different way from the Joker.

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Now let’s take about Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne/Batman. Okay we’ve seen him in the previous two films and he’s a been through a lot, but in this film Bruce/Batman looks like he’ll be put through hell and back physically and mentally. I’m just curious to see what’s been going on in Bruce’s life in the 8 years between the last film and this one. And I also wanna see how the story develops his character too. Compared to a lot of other superhero films, Bale’s version of Bruce Wayne/Batman I’m not overally interested in, he’s alright and I’m sure there are people who love it but for me there’s never been a point where I’ve been attached to his character.

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Okay now let’s move onto Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle/Catwoman. I think it’s fair to say that when Ms. Hathaway was cast as Catwoman a lot of people weren’t too keen on her. I mean she’s hot, that’s a fact. But outside of that not many of her films have ever been amazing and she’s not really the first actress you think of to take on the character as interesting and as complex as Selina Kyle/Catwoman. But most us trusted Chris Nolan’s judgment as he’s never made a film where the cast didn’t work in his favour. The first screenshots we got of her were interesting, but lacking the more ‘cat-like’ aspects of the costume which lead a lot of fans to go into frenzy about it, complaining in many of the forums I passed through. Other people just thought she looked hot in leather and never questioned anything else about her haha. Eventually we did see the full uniform and she indeed have the cat ears and to be honest that’s all I needed. In the trailers she seems very suspicious, provocative and acrobatic; all the key aspects hat Catwoman requires, so I am curious to see what Anne Hathaway does with the role and hopefully she’ll do her comic book character justice.

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Now I know that there are many other additional cast members that’ll be part of this film, but to be honest I’m only mainly interested in a few specific people outside of Batman, Bane and Catwoman. Like Alfred, I love Michael Caine in these Batman films and I believe him to be one of the key aspects of what makes Nolan’s films work, he is the reliable butler always supplying helpful information and supporting Bruce throughout all of his endeavours. I’m also curious to see what’s been going with Lucius Fox (Morgan Freeman) and I also want to know what the significance of Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s character as John Blake. Outside of characters I’m looking forward to some absurdly cool scenes of destruction and cool spectacle. I also am ready for another kick ass soundtrack from Hans Zimmer who I swear is a composer of music who can never do wrong! I’m also curious to see how the character dynamic will work between Batman and Catwoman. The key thing that has my interest in the fight between Batman and Bane, finally we’re going to get a big one-on-one fight with Batman and another enemy which is totally necessary in my opinion. I just want to see Bane break Batman! 😀 We haven’t seen a proper representation of all of Batman’s martial arts skills and how he’d use them along with his gadgets in a fight. Fights in Batman films seem to lack style, choreography and that ‘cool’ effect you’d get the X-Men or Spider-Man films which excel in their fight sequences (sure they have super powers but they are still done well and that’s what counts).

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In conclusion The Dark Knight Rises is looking like an epic conclusion to the Christopher Nolan Batman films. Its got action, drama, atmosphere and so much more. Any fan of Batman or Christopher Nolan shouldn’t miss out on this film. It really is one of the biggest films of 2012, people have been patiently waiting for the arrival of this film, but now that it’s so close fan are starting to blow up. This film along with The Avengers, The Amazing Spider-Man and The Hobbit is in the list of the most anticipated film of the year. Now The Avengers already started off the summer film season with a bang and has proven to be a success with fans and critics. It has now set the standard for good films this year, it’s also broken loads of records financially and has now become the 5th highest grossing film of all time! So TDKR has some pretty big shoes to fill, however if history is anything to go by, then by the time we get to July 20th the Batman fans will come in great numbers and destroy Marvel like they did in 2008. However times are different and The Avengers is no simple comic book film, it is the definition of the ultimate comic film and has been anticipated for 4 years (even more for comic book fans of the older generation). Either way I know TDKR is gonna be a big deal this summer and I’ll be there to see what the deal is. 🙂

If you still need convincing of the awesomeness of this film watch this trailer:

 
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Posted by on May 23, 2012 in Films, Media

 

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Terminator Salvation Review

Howdy people, today I come to you with another film review from the past and this one comes in the shape of Terminator Salvation aka Terminator 4. Now I saw this film in the cinema back in the summer of 2009 and to be honest I liked it back then, it wasn’t great but it was tolerable. However times have changed and I wanted to offer up my new opinions instead in the year 2012.

The History

Now for those not in the know let me give y’all a little history lesson. It all started in 1984 when the first Terminator was created. Directed by James Cameron (now known for his work on Titanic and Avatar), the film featured Michael Biehn as Kyle Reese, a man set back from the future to protect Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) and her unborn child from the unstoppable cybernetic robot assassin The Terminator T-800 (played by Arnold Schwarzenegger) who has been sent back to kill her. The film revolves around Kyle and Sarah running away from the Terminator and while on the run we find out that Sarah is meant to have a child who is meant to safe the future from Skynet, a computer system that takes over all electronic technology. The story of this film set up one of the most interesting and confusing plots I’ve ever witnessed in cinema with the concept of time travel and time paradoxes. It honestly wouldn’t come any better then this. The film was a cross between science fiction and horror and on paper this was a risky project. The budget was low, the story had some complex issues and Arnie at the time wasn’t exactly a big actor yet, but times did change. Luckily The Terminator was a well recieved film back in the 80s. The music was scary, the action was beautifully done, the sense of danger was constantly there and the movie propelled Arnie into stardom. With the film being an overall success financially and critically there was room for a sequel… and boy was there a sequel.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day was the follow up film that showed up in 1991 again directed by James Cameron. This film saw Sarah Connor’s character change dramatically, she was now a badass chick who knew what the future held and she prepared herself and her son through childhood for the future that he would undertake. Unfortunately due to her efforts in trying to stop Skynet (attempting to bomb a computer factory), she was arrested and put into a mental hospital. While in there we see the now 11 year old John Connor living with foster parents, but he is a little rebel skipping school and doing as he pleases (to a degree due to his age). As fate would have it, a new Terminator comes from the future to take out John due to his future duty as the leader of the resistance against Skynet. This Terminator is the T-1000 which has many upgrades over Arnie’s model with a liquid metal that allows it to take the appearance and voice of any person it comes into contact with; it has a higher level of durability then the previous models. The original T-800 Terminator comes back, except this time he has to protect John from the T-1000. After busting Sarah out of the metal hospital, John, Sarah and the T-800 move quickly to avoid death and to take out the place where Skynet came into existence. Now let me tell you now, this is the best Terminator film out of the all of them, it’s the definition of badass! The film is bigger and better then the last, showcasing even more memorable action sequences, more interesting story elements and even stronger visual effects which at the time were amazing. The film outgrossed the original and was considered to be even better then the last film by many fans and critics and even won 4 Oscars at the 64th Academy Awards.

Then after a long while in 2003 we got Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. In this film it focused on John Connor’s adult years which lead up to the future we’ve heard about. Basically after Skynet failed to kill Sarah Connor before John was born, it sends back another Terminator, the T-X, to try and kill John’s associates. Since Judgment Day has only delayed rather then averted, John Connor still knows the what’ll happen in the future and has been living and constantly on the move. The T-X is even more advance then the model in T2, with an endoskeleton with built-in weaponry, a liquid metal exterior similar to the T-1000 and the ability to control other machines. Luckily Arnie was back again as the T-850 model, having the same attributes as the previous versions, but now has a different power source. This time he protects John Connor and his future wife Kate Brewster (who is also a target for the T-X). Even with Arnie back in the game, a sexy new female cyborg and action set pieces that looked great, the plot, characters and overall film wasn’t strong enough. It was just impossiblt to live up to Terminator 2, T3 as much money as the previous films and only got an aveerage to negative reception.

In truth after that film it seemed like there was never going to be another Terminator. T3 more or less filled out the connections between the future and the present. Arnold Schwarzenegger had quit acting and become Governor of California and there was no word from series originator James Cameron whether the franchise would get a new film. So when i heard that a fourth Terminator film was in the works i felt hope in my soul again. Okay I’ve blabbered on for far too long, it’s about time i actually started talking about the new film.

The Review

When it comes to story it goes something like this: Salvation is set in 2018 and focuses on the war between Skynet and humanity, with the human Resistance fighting against Skynet’s killing machines. The film focuses John Connor as a a Resistance fighter before he becomes the legendary leader that is known from the first and second films. On the other side of things there is a cyborg called Marcus Wright who used to be human who then got transformed, he has no memory of his past and in the film he spends most his time trying to hunt for the answers. The film also introduces us to a young Kyle Reese and give us the origin of the T-800 Model 101 Terminator.

With Terminator 4 now under the direction of McG and the promise of a dark gritty film with many ties to the first and second films, you think this film would be brillaint right? Wrong! To be honest back in 2009 I thought the film was pretty decent but then I watched it again in last year and man, this film is nothing like I remember it and if anything it seems worse. Now I understand that first Terminator was a horror film, the second film was an action thriller and the third was more of an action film. And this film was a war film. Unfortunately I didn’t really feel like the whole war concept was translated into the film very well. Sure it was there, but its execution wasn’t very good at all. T4 was just a dark, depressing film for all the wrong reasons, it was lacking in character charm or originality which all the previous films had.

The characters in the film were okay but for the most part they’re pretty bland. I mean you’re only paying attention to 3 or 4 of them throughout the whole film because everybody else doesn’t really matter. Christian Bale plays this version of John Connor and in my opinion he was not a good choice for this character. The way he speaks, urgh! Damn yo so annoying. The guy seems to whisper when he talks or he sometimes uses that horrible raspy voice from the Batman films! His overall look just seems to deviate too far from the original John Connor, he seems a little skinny in the face and it makes him seem older then he should look and i wish that John didn’t have a fat mustache. On the other side you have Marcus Wright, a man turned machine that lives his life without knowing the truth. Sam Worthington is a little better than Bale’s character because he’s got a much more interesting backstory and you can kind of attach to him, but again after a while he gets really boring. And lastly we have Anton Yelchin as Kyle Reese. Now I thought that this was a one of these kinds of characters that the actor didn’t get right. Now don’t get me wrong, I loved Anton Yelchin in Star Trek as Pavel Chekov, but in this film he was a just okay, but pretty weak in prescence and I did not feel the connection between him and the version from the first film. The rest of cast were just forgettable. Other characters like Kate Connor, Barnes, Blair Williams, and General Ashdown… I didn’t care about them, they were bland and irrelevant. It may be harsh but that’sjust the way I felt. I really got into that mode of just seeing action and skiping past anything to do with the human scenes. I just wanted to see explosions and robots. And speaking of robots, let’s talk about them.


The T-600s were pretty nice, sure they were slow, unorganised and nowhere near as cool as Arnie’s T-800 model, however I felt they were a nice  little edition to the series. I couldn’t tell exactly where the T-700s were because between them and the T-600s they’re hard to tell apart because they’re not clearly labelled lol. And then there’s the T-800s, they still rock, nuff said. The other flying and water machines were okay for what they were and it’s good that tehfilmmakers tried to add more types of machines, but in the end I reakky didn’t really care for them. The only new robot that really deserves kudos is the Harvester, that colossal beast is cool, just moving about in slow motion shooting the crap out of stuff, badass. The visual style of the film is pretty interesting, it based in a baren wasteland that is the future version of Earth due to the war and it is nicely done. And in terms of the presentation the locations do look dark and dreary and i think it’s a look that works fairly well, although i was hoping for fights at nigh time like in the previous films. But the look very a little dull and uninteresting. The GCI in the film is pretty good, but that’s to be expected in films like these and there was some good use of praticle models for teh Terminator robots too, although there are a few inaccuracies which are clearly noticeable. The T-800 models are done very well for something that only mainly moved with skin covering it or moving in stop motion animation. With the action scenes and sequences, they were alright and nice to look at, though they wasn’t anything that left an impression or properly memorable.

Conclusion

In the end Terminator Salvation aka Terminator 4 wasn’t complete a load of crud, but it wasn’t the film fans or critics wanted. There is some things to like about the film like the action sequences and the unstoppable Terminator robots/ There wasseveral points of the film where I was left thinking “Oh come off it! How is that thing is still moving? Impossible!” The Arnie cameo is great even if it is through CG editing and even if he’s there for 2 minutes. Unforunately the film is just not the same with out the full-on awesomeness that is Arnold Schwarzenegger! He makes the films; without him, there is no Terminator! The film did okay without him considering the circumstances, but it had it’s own share of problems with a pretty weak and inconsistant story, boring chaarcters and overall feeling like a film really devoid of any life or feeling. McG was a bad choice as the drector and this film has sort of shot the Terminator series into the ground. I don’t think there should be any other films after T4 and if there is i will send an angry letter to James Cameron telling him to get his ass in gear and prevent this franchise from being completely destroyed.

Rating: 5.5/10

 
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Posted by on March 29, 2012 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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