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My Quick Thoughts On Star Wars Rebels

Howdy people of the internet, how are you all? With Star Wars Rebels set to return to TV next month with its second season I thought I’d just give you my thoughts on the show since I have been watching since the beginning but haven’t had the chance to review anything that I’ve watched.

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Initially I was hesitant to watch Rebels, I mean I had a lot of concerns. While the show had some interesting ideas and was focused on the most respected side of the Star Wars films (the Original Trilogy), the show still had a questionable art style, a kid friendly approach and a batch of new characters that I wasn’t sure I could get attached to. But Rebels, once it found its feet got better and become a show I wanted to watch out of choice rather than just being something to watch because of the “Star Wars” label.

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From the time I started watching with Spark of Rebellion I knew that this was a totally different beast from The Clone Wars series. For me TCW just had stories, characters and a tone I wasn’t too interested in, plus it didn’t help that the art and animation just didn’t agree with me either. And while there are a few similarities when it comes to the visual presentation, Rebels just sported a much sleeker and polished look. The art was a little more detailed, use of colour and lighting was more noticeable especially when it comes to locations and action sequences, and while the fluidity of 3D animation looked a little questionable at times, for the most part it was more impressive than TCW. But beyond the visuals, Rebels just had the spirit of the film embedded into the stories and characters more so than the former show, and it had more interesting scenarios to discover. I will say that I didn’t love this show at first, I liked it, but around halfway through the show really started tapping into the Star Wars mythology, but also started developing its own stories too and got a little more serious in tone too. By the time I’d watched The Siege of Lothal I knew shit was getting real, that film really raised the stakes and drama, and having Darth Vader appear and show why he’s a force not to be messed with was awesome.

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But what would a show be without its characters? Luckily Rebels has a great bunch of main characters but also has some cool secondary characters and utilizes other famous faces in guest appears too. When it comes to the main protagonists you have Ezra, Kanan, Sabine, Hera, Zeb and Chopper, they’re a group of individuals who are totally different, but at the end of the day they’re family. The reason they work is as a team is because they are fleshed out characters, either having episodes dedicated themselves or having interactions that build them up. This especially the case with Sabine, Kanan and Ezra. Ezra especially was a character I didn’t think I’d like but he grows, gets better and becomes someone you want to root for. I love characters like the Inquisitor, Agent Kallus and Minister Maketh Tua who are essentially the bad guys, but they are portrayed in such a way where you’re just as curious to see what they’re up to, how they fit into the grand scheme of things and whether they’ll succeed or fail. Also inclusion of characters like Senator Bail Organa, Lando Calrissian and Grand Moff Willhuff Tarkin are great too.

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To conclude Star Wars Rebels a show I like a lot, it started out little okay but it got better and now I’m really looking forward to seeing how this show progresses with man characters and how it will continue to tie into the film universe as well.

So have you seen Star Wars Rebels and if so what do you think of it? Be sure to comment below and let me know and I’ll see ya on the next blog post, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on September 3, 2015 in Media, Television

 

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SIMPLE REVIEW: Selma

Howdy ladies and gents, time for another new film review and today I’ll be talking about Selma. Now considering how stingy my local cinema is when it comes to films of this nature, I thought I wouldn’t get the chance to see this, but me and friend checked it out today and now I’m ready to pass on my thoughts.

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The premise for the film is as follows:

“A chronicle of Martin Luther King’s campaign to secure equal voting rights via an epic march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama in 1965.”

Emotions, that’s what this film made me feel, pure emotions. Films that deal with the struggle of black people will always hit home (being a black guy myself) and each time I watch a film like this I feel incredible levels of pain, but also gratitude for what the black people of the past had done for us people today. The film deals with a very specific period of the civil rights movement and not only displays from the perspective of King, but his family, followers and the politicians as well. It is great to see King rise to the occasion and fight for his people, but also face impossible odds that seemed stacked up against. This film does not shy away from the brutality of history, there is violence of the verbal and physical kind, but it is the physical which is hard to watch as black people are shot, beaten and whipped in a disgusting manner and one can only imagine what it would have been like to witness this first-hand. However this needed to be shown as it does show the cruel world we used to live in. In some ways I see some parrells to the film Fruitvale Station, while both films have very different source material, there is one major similarity I found: black people getting unlawfully beaten and killed at the hands of white law enforcers with the people responsible weren’t held accountable for their crimes because of crooked legal system and racism. Anyway back to this film, I thought the story was raw, painful, beautiful and uplifting, it moved at a decent pace and hit all the right emotional beats.

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When it comes to the cast this film has a pretty substantial amount of famous faces and if you know your film and TV stars then you’ll spot a lot of famous faces. Since there are literally too many people to mention I’ll try to be brief and highlight my favourite people.

David Oyelowo as Martin Luther King, Jr., wow, what a performance. Oyelowo is an actor I’ve liked for a while now, but this is clearly his best performance to date as he transforms himself completely and delivers his lines with such passion, intensity and his physicality also makes you feel like you are watching King right there in the cinema. Tom Wilkinson was also very good as Lyndon B. Johnson, Wilkinson is one of those actors who shows up in a lot of films but here he has a more substantial role and does a very good job. Tim Roth also does a great job as George Wallace, while Carmen Ejogo as Coretta Scott King delivered a solid performance too and then there’s Wendell Pierce from The Wire) as Hosea Williams who was lovely. I also loved seeing Ruben Santiago-Hudson (from Castle) here as Bayard Rustin, Common was also good as James Bevel, Cuba Gooding, Jr. as Fred Gray was a lovely surprise, while the appearances by Oprah Winfrey and Martin Sheen as Annie Lee Cooper and Frank Minis Johnson were small yet effective. Then there’s Giovanni Ribisi as Lee C. White, Andre Holland as Andrew Young, Lorraine Toussaint as Amelia Boynton Robinson, Niecy Nash as Richie Jean Jackson and Tessa Thompson as Diane Nash who did great too.

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In conclusion Selma is a well-directed film with an incredible cast, a well-executed story and beautiful soundtrack. Though hard to watch at times, I did feel quite empowered after I left the film, I would have enjoyed the film a lot more had the projection people has fixed the sound problems that happened throughout the film! But anyway, go out and watch this film, it deserves your time and you too will see it got robbed at the Oscar nominations ages ago.

So have you seen Selma and if so what did you think of it? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 🙂

 
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Posted by on February 12, 2015 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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The Paperboy Review

I recall seeing the trailer for this film I think around a month ago and I knew from that point that this was a film that would be worth a watch. The story seems interesting and the cast was solid, so fast forward to Wednesday this week when I went to watch this film in the cinema and I have to say it was definitely something I’m not going to forget anytime soon.

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So the story of The Paperboy is set in the 1960s in Moat County, Florida. Here we have Jack Jansen; he’s the son of the local newspaper publisher and has the job of paperboy after he’s kicked out of college. But things change when Jack’s journalist brother Ward arrives from Miami hot on the trail of a story that could make his career. Along with writing partner Yardley, Ward wants to uncover the mystery behind inmate Hilary Van Wetter’s imprisonment and prove him innocent. And then there’s Charlotte Bless, a woman obsessed with prison-based men who has now taken a liking to Hilary who tags along with Ward and Yardley and supply them with information relating to the investigation. With Jack now as their driver, the four of them travel to prison to meet Hilary and try to help his situation. However what follows is a tale of mixed emotions, sexual tension, mystery and deceit.

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I thought the story in this film was very intriguing and at no point was I bored, as the plot advanced and thickened I just wanted to know more about each of the characters. Elements of the story and characters really fell into the area of strange and disturbing territories for me. Some of the secrets and mysterious behind these different situations are pretty unexpected and dramatic. There is one now-infamous scene in the film that everyone talks about. I won’t say what it is but it is a scene that sort of leaves on speechless. Annoyingly the specific scene question was ruined by Mark Kermode while watching one of his videos online, however that still didn’t stop the scene from being strange to watch.

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I think the strongest element of the film is the characters as the performances from the cast here is some of their strongest stuff for a while. Let’s start with Zac Efron as Jack Jansen. In this film he plays a young adult with issues in his past and has a pretty dull life until the return of his brother and his first encounter with Charlotte Bless. After seeing her he becomes obsessed and wants to court her, but due to Charlotte’s love for Hilary it creates emotional and sexual complications for them. I think this is his finest performance to date. Now I have to say I have become a fan of his in recent years, while I stay away from his romantic films, after I saw him in Me and Orson Welles I knew he had actual talent. In this film his talent is on show as much as he is in his underwear for a lot of the film too haha. Then we have Matthew McConaughey as Ward Jansen, he was really as this journalist who tried was well-headed and stayed in control of most of the situations he was in. I don’t have much to say about McConaughey besides the fact that he played his role very well and I was impressed.

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Let’s move onto the most surprising performance in the film which was Nicole Kidman as Charlotte Bless. My god, what difference from her other roles! I have never a transformation for a role. Kidman was simply captivating as this sexually charged prison groupie who is a complicated and vulnerable person that has wants and needs. You can see that she knows what she wants and tries to keep Jack away at a distance because of his young love for her. The other notable performance would be from John Cusack as Hillary Van Wetter, he was a creepy individual who was calm and collected in is meetings with Ward, Yardley and Jack; however with Charlotte they have a connection of the sexual kind that comes to the surface a points. This is most different kind of performance I have seen from Cusack; it was quite strange and disturbing.

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Now we move onto David Oyelowo as Yardley Acheman, he was surprisingly intriguing as Ward’s writing partner. He brought some humour to the film and some reliability too both due to the fact that he was black and English too. And lastly we have Macy Gray who plays as Anita but also acts as the narrator of the film too. I thought she was simply fabulous. I also liked how she was the innocent party in this watching the chaos ensue from a distance as the maid for the Jansen family. The relationship between her and Jack is sweet and lovely to watch, Gray and Efron have great chemistry together on-screen. I know Gray has made some film appearances over the years but this is the first time I’ve seen her in years and I’m glad I did, she does have some acting talent.

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When it comes to the presentation its pretty good, visually the cinematography and lighting is nice and there is a use of film grain in the film which I think really worked for the film especially because of it 60s setting. Also the soundtrack by Mario Grigorov was very good at conveying emotions and amplifying the dramatic elements of the film, it can be quiet unnerving and creepy at points, also the collection of songs in the film was nice to listen to too.

So to conclude The Paperboy was a film that was definitely an interesting film which left me with mixed feelings after I left the cinema. I kind of feel the same way about this film like I did with On The Road, it has some very interesting and impressive elements but some elements are unnerving and awkward to watch for me. I still recommend the film for the story and performances of the cast which is very good and unforgettable.

Rating: 7.5/10 (I recommend it for the story and cast alone)

So what did you think of The Paperboy? Whatever your thoughts drop them below and I’ll see ya on the next review yo! 😀

 
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Posted by on March 21, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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