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Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Review

Good day to you ladies and gents, it is review time once again and today I am bringing you my review of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, my last most anticipated film of the year. With 2016 nearly over and most of the films of interest having come out already, I wasn’t expecting to be wowed by any more films. And that’s not to say that I wouldn’t be impressed with Rogue One, but I assumed it’d be good but not mind-blowing… Oh how wrong I was. I’m gonna tell you right now, Rogue One was frigging awesome and you should watch it immediately. But in case you need more convincing read on and check out my thoughts in this spoiler-free review! 😀

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The story can be summed up as the following:

“Jyn Erso, a Rebellion soldier and criminal, sets out on a life-changing journey with her Rebel allies to find her father and obtain the schematics the Galactic Empire’s superweapon, the Death Star.”

I thought that Rogue One‘s story was really good. As a fan of the film series, I knew how this film would end, but that did not make the journey any less exciting. This is a tale hope and bravery in times of darkness and uncertainty, and while the story has enough familiar elements that allows it to coexist with the main series films, it allows presents a lot that we haven’t seen in a Star Wars film. One of the things I admired early on was how different this film was from the other Star Wars films, especially when it came to the direction, atmosphere and tone. Those key elements felt fresh and unique, and at several points this film felt a lot grittier, dirtier, realistic, dark and dramatic, and there to be honest I got a little emotional during certain sequences. This film certainly adheres to the war genre in really impressive ways, and I won’t ruin anything, but I will say that if you’ve watched any war film, then you’ll notice how well this film handles sense of danger and dread, overwhelming odds, tone and casualties. And there’s also some lovely ties to other SW films and the way it tied into A New Hope was just delightful.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story(Felicity Jones)Ph: Film Frame©Lucasfilm LFL

The cast was all so very, very good. What I appreciated about this cast was the fact that they all felt relevant, had moments to shine and were engaging. Firstly there’s Felicity Jones who was just wonderful as Jyn Erso, this lady was strong, courageous, but also relatable and Jones really did well in the role. Diego Luna as Cassian Andor was someone I ended up liking more than I expected, Andor had a fair amount of depth and intelligence to him. Alan Tudyk as K-2SO was awesome, he was a droid who had so many notable/funny moments because of his blunt and unapologetic nature, and Tudyk was just perfect with the timing of his speech. Riz Ahmed as Bodhi Rook, was a really interesting character who had plenty of interesting, fun and important moments with Ahmed really working well. And then you have Donnie Yen and Wen Jiang as Chirrut ÃŽmwe and Baze Malbus, these two worked well both as individuals and together because of their personality traits and combat capabilities, but also because they were so likable and charming, both Yen and Jiang did really well, but Yen really stood out because of his charisma and martial arts abilities. Mads Mikkelsen as Galen Erso was really good and so was Forest Whitaker as Saw Gerrera, and you also have Ben Mendelsohn as Orson Krennic, a man who was strong-willed and cunning, and even though his type of villain has been done before I loved the way Mendelsohn handled the character. There were also some really nice and surprising cameos from certain SW characters and actors which you’ll have to see for yourselves.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story(Donnie Yen)Ph: Film Frame©Lucasfilm LFL

When it comes to the presentation it was fantastic! Visually this film is probably the best in the franchise so far, the art direction and use of colour, along with the cinematography and the blending of practical and digital visual effects was on another level. I especially loved the practical effects for the aliens which were really cool, and cinematography which was used to great effect with the sense of scale, tracking shots, and various angles. I adored the action sequences as they varied from firefights to hand-to-hand combat to aerial/space dogfights, all of these sequences are so intense and well-choreographed, and again so different from what we’ve seen in previous SW films. As for the film score from Michael Giacchino, the man worked magic again. Giacchino’s score for Rogue One was epic, whimsical, heartbreaking and full of wonder, and the music captured the spirit of John Williams’ sound while also creating something new as well.

In conclusion Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was just a good time at the cinema and exceeded my expectations in a lot of ways. I had some very, very minor issues with the use of CGI is some places and some pacing nitpicks in the earlier half of the story, but they pale in comparison to how much I enjoyed this film. This film has the right amount of nostalgia as a prequel to A New Hope, but presents so many new elements to this universe at the same time. Rogue One was beautiful, funny, emotional, action-packed, surprising and downright fun especially for fans. I highly recommend the film and can’t wait to see it again in IMAX.

So have you seen Rogue One: A Star Wars Story or are you going to watch it soon? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to drop them in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the review, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on December 16, 2016 in Film Reviews, Reviews

 

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QUICK THOUGHTS: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – Celebration Reel

Howdy people of the internet, been a bit since I posted anything new so here I am again talking about a trailer, or more so a behind-the-scenes featurette on the upcoming Rogue One: A Star Wars Story that’ll be showing up in December.Now I’ve been pretty hyped for this film since I saw the leaked footage from Comic-Con last year I think, and after the first trailer game out I got even more excited. But I think it’s the footage that dropped online from Star Wars Celebration that really got me the most giddy so far. 🙂

Check out the video here:

After I saw this yesterday I felt the hype ascend in my soul again haha! 😀 I mean how can you not see that footage and not be anything but excited for this film? That reel pretty much confirmed what we’ve been told this film would be from the beginning; a war film. Rogue One looks rough, dirty, more serious in tone and just from the shots on the beach, the collection of Stormtroopers and other individuals running through explosions, this looks a war film set in the Star Wars universe and I love it.

Just the approach in style, direction, cinematography and use of practical effects is fascinating and feels very different from The Force Awakens where things in this film feel a little more intense and action-packed. It really feels like Gareth Edwards and the rest of the cast and crew know what they’re doing and are creating something familiar yet totally different from what we’ve seen before in the main series of films. And while I usually don’t like to check out how certain films are made because I just like not knowing the details, at the same time it can be very insightful and can give you a greater level of respect for the film you’re watching and I dunno how Edwards and company are keeping such a crazy production in check but they seem to be doing it in such a great way from what I’ve been in this footage.

And speaking of footage look at all that goodness like:

  1. Donnie Yen looking all badass and dispatching dudes in only the badass way that he can, love it!
  2. Felicity Jones continues to look more and more interesting.
  3. The amount of different designs of the human and alien-based characters is varied and cool.
  4. Seeing Gareth Edwards behind the camera during some of the key action scenes looked great and its cool to see him actively involved with the camera work.
  5. Oh and that cool small creature towards the end of the video who laughed before going back to shooting stuff from that gun, I love him. I have no clue who or what he is but I think he’s now my favourite person since Wicket or Nien Nunb! XD

Anyway, regardless of how Rogue One turns out I’m still glad that the effort was put into this film to make something different and I’m more hopeful than ever that I’ll have a good time in December.

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So those are my thoughts, right now I’m on the hype train for this film and the wait for December continues to get harder and harder. 😛 But how about you? Were you impressed with this behind-the-scenes footage or would you have prefered to see a proper trailer instead? Whatever your thoughts be sure to drop them below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on July 16, 2016 in Films, Media

 

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QUICK REVIEW: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Trailer #1

Howdy ladies and gents, time for another trailer review and today I’m talking about one really exciting trailer because it is the first footage of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. For the longest time I’ve wanted to see some footage from this film since it was announced because of the director at the helm and wanted to see how this film would be different from the main series of the films tonally. And in the week when we got the announcement that there’d be a Doctor Strange trailer next week Tuesday, this new trailer just comes out of nowhere and blows up the internet for the fans. So now I just wanted to share my thoughts.on the new trailer, oh and by the way I’m referring to this film as just Rogue One from now on as I currently hate the title for this film.

So here’s the trailer below:

Well this was certainly unexpected, I mean wow, I really liked this trailer. It had the right balance of nostalgia, freshness, mystery, intrigue and action. I really want to see this film even more than before.

It has been said by director Gareth Edwards that this film would be a war film, which would be a first for the Star Wars films series as there hasn’t been a film that’s had a heavy focus on the war side of things, and this trailer certainly looks like it’ll be looking living up war style of film. The funny thing is there was no sign of the Jedi or Sith (more specifically Darth Vader) and yet I was still hooked, and that is impressive to me considering that the Jedi and Sith are my favourite elements of the Star Wars. Visually the film looked like Star Wars but with a gritty/dirty look, sleeker/cleaner visual effects and an intriguing/diverse cast.

Straight from the beginning the tone for this film is fairly serious with the music, and the brief moments of action and chaos, and that’s what I loved so much, the atmosphere in this film feels very different to The Force Awakens or any of the other previous Star Wars films. Things felt tense, dangerous and bleak and I loved it. That’s not to say that I don’t enjoy the more light-hearted/family friendly adventures, but considering that this film is being described as war film, it feels appropriate. I’m liking Felicity Jones as Jyn Erso, she looks cool and interesting, I also like what I saw/heard from Forest Whitaker and Ben Mendelsohn looks as an Imperial admiral, but it’s the small glimpse of Donnie Yen that got me hyped. Just seeing him with some quick action with a staff got me giddy. 🙂

I also really loved the throwbacks to A New Hope with the use of the AT-AT walkers, construction of the Death Star, old Stormtroopers and many other visual easter eggs/references. What these elements established was that we’re clearly still in the same universe as the other films, but that things would be unfolding in a more mature and serious manner than before which excites me because I believe Star Wars as a franchise has reached a point where it needs to evolve/change and do new and interesting things with the mythology, and I believe Rogue One is a step in the right direction.

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To conclude the first trailer for Rogue One got me excited in all the right ways. It just enough to tease me about the tone of this film and give me some insight into who some of the key players will be. I believe that this film will surprise people and that Gareth Edwards will do the fans justice with this spin-off film.

So have you seen the first trailer for Rogue One and if so what do you think of it? Are you hyped, underwhelmed or confused by what you’ve seen?  Whatever your thoughts are be sure to drop me a comment and I’ll see ya on the next review! 🙂

 
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Posted by on April 8, 2016 in Films, Media, Reviews

 

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The Theory of Everything Review

Howdy ladies and gents, time for the first new film review of 2015 and we start off with The Theory of Everything. Now this film technically came out last year for the US, but us UK residents had to until New Year’s Day to finally see it. Since the first time I saw the trailer in the cinema I knew I wanted to watch this film, plus my best friend over at Musings highly recommended the film so then I had to watch it. So now that I’ve seen it today I’m ready to pass judgement.

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The story for the film can be summed up as the following:

“The film follows the life of Stephen Hawking as it covers his diagnosis of motor neuron disease, his success in physics and his relationship with Jane Wilde Hawking.”

I thought the story in this film was very nice, informative and beautiful. As a person who has been aware of the existence of Stephen Hawking from childhood, but never really knew anything personal about him, this film was very intriguing. As an audience we get to see the life of Hawking before his illness, learn how smart he was, how he came up with his theories and how fell in love and got family despite his disease. But we also get to see things from the perspective of Jane Wilde Hawking, the person who was by his side from the beginning, how she helped him and had to deal with the complications of a relationship with Stephen. What I appreciated about the story was the fact that it did show a lot of the internal struggle that both Stephen and Jane had to go through and didn’t shy away from some of the hard times these two had to endure. Obviously because of Hawking’s disease, the film can be fairly melancholy and there are a few special instances that left me almost wanting to shed a tear or so, however the film could also be quite humourous at times and I was surprised how light-hearted it could be. And there is one moment in the film where Hawking gives a monologue and it was one of the most beautiful and inspiring things I have ever heard and it made me want to cry. If I have any quarrels with the film I would say that I felt like there were moments which focused on Jane who I wasn’t as interested in seeing and overall because of all the rave reviews I was expecting to fall in love with the film, but I didn’t entirely.

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When it comes to the cast the performances were all very strong and great to watch. Firstly there’s Eddie Redmayne who turns in an absolutely brilliant performance as Stephen Hawking. You can see that Stephen is a kind, smart, perceptive and ambitious man, and even in the face of adversity with his disease he continues live on, theorize and become famous. Redmayne has been one of those actors I have paid attention to especially after I saw him in Les Misérables, but in this film he pretty much gives a top-class performance as he portrays a person who is in their prime and then slowly deteriorate and watching Redmayne slowly change and watching all of the small touches whether it was the way he spoke, positioned his body, moved his hands or looked around with his eyes, it was bloody impressive. Not to be overshadowed Felicity Jones does a wonderful performance as Jane Wilde Hawking. Jane is woman who is beautiful, charming and very supportive or Stephen throughout all of his endeavours, however in their relationship you can see the strain and the toll its taking on her and the complications that take place behind the scenes.

Charlie Cox as Jonathan Jones was the piece of the puzzle I did not expect to see in this film, however I’m glad that he was there as Cox does great in this role and I have to say that when I saw Cox I was like “Oh wow, that’s Owen from Boardwalk Empire! It is totally bizarre, but I’m loving his performance.” David Thewlis was great as Dennis Sciam, Dennis is one of the people who has known Stephen since he was much younger and was only coming up with his theories about the universe back in university and has been one of his biggest supporters. Thewlis is always good in most films he’s in and I think he has a great screen presence whenever he’s around. And then there’s Simon McBurney who did a good job as Frank Hawking. Maxine Peake was just delightful as Elaine Mason, while Christian McKay’s performance as Roger Penrose was also great to see. And finally I really liked Harry Lloyd as Brian and Emily Watson as Beryl Wilde.

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In conclusion The Theory of Everything is a film I was glad to watch as it was very engaging, emotional and quite inspirational. I do feel like I expected a little more from the film considering the hype surrounding it, however, with great performances from a cast like this, there is little to complain about.

Rating: 8.5/10

So have you seen The Theory of Everything and if so what did you think of it? Whatever your thoughts are, be sure to drop them in the comments below and I’ll see you on the next film review, Laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on January 3, 2015 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Paul Giamatti Up for Rhino Role in The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Okay now out of all the news coming out surrounding The Amazing Spider-Man 2 this has to be the most surprising to me, way more than Jamie Foxx’s involvement as Electro. When I saw the headline for the article I was totally like “What? No way!” Totally took me by surprise. Anyway here is the article from superherohype for you to read:

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“It looks like Marc Webb’s upcoming sequel to The Amazing Spider-Man will be getting another new villain! The Hollywood Reporter says that Paul Giamatti is in talks to play the Rhino in the May 2, 2014 film. It’s also being reported that Felicity Jones is in talks for an undisclosed role.

The alter-ego of Aleksei Mikhailovich Sytsevich, the Rhino first appeared in 1966’s “The Amazing Spider-Man” #41. A former low-key thug, an experiment grafted a nearly-indestructible polymer to Aleksei’s skin, making him nearly unstoppable.

Giamatti appeared last in year in a variety of projects like Rock of Ages, Cosmopolis and John Dies at the End. Jones, meanwhile, is well known for roles in films like The Tempest and Like Crazy.

Already set to star Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Jamie Foxx, Shailene Woodley, Dane DeHaan and Martin Sheen, the new chapter in the Spider-Man saga was already confirmed to see the debut of Electro (Foxx) and Mary Jane Watson (Woodley).”

Now while Rhino isn’t really one of my favourite Spidey villains, I do have respect for certain incarnations of the character like in Spider-Man: The Animated Series or The Spectacular Spider-Man TV Series. But to have him put into live-action? No, no, no. That just doesn’t sound like a good idea, I can just imagine the suit and the character being butchered. Plus what’s the deal with getting Paul Giamatti involved with this role? Now don’t get me wrong Paul Giamatti is a great actor and from what I’ve seen him in he is very versatile, but as someone like Rhino I couldn’t see Giamatti taking on that kind of persona especially because he’s so dimwitted. As for Felicity Jones I’m not familiar with her but there’s a rumour of her potentially playing Betty Brant, if that’s the case then that be badass because she looks the part although a bit young in appearance for my liking. But otherwise she’s fine.

 
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Posted by on January 29, 2013 in Films, Media

 

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