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EPIC REVIEW: Justice League

Howdy ladies and gents, its time for another review and today I get to talk about one of the biggest films of the year, Justice League. Now to say that the lead up to this film has been rough would be an understatement, with the mostly negative feedback to Batman V Superman and Suicide Squad and the success of Wonder Woman, the odds were stacked against this film. Add on top of that the fact that Zack Snyder left the film because of family tragedy, Joss Whedon had to step in to finish the films and since then there were numerous conflicting reports about what had changed, and how much of the film was changed because of Whedon’s involvement. Anyway, the film’s out, the reception’s been mixed and now its time for me to throw my thoughts into the mix! ūüôā

So the plot can be described as the following:

“A new evil force comes to Earth threatening¬†to bring about the end of the world, and so¬†Bruce Wayne and Wonder Woman work together to find and recruit a team of special¬†individuals including Aquaman, Cyborg and The Flash to stand against this newly awakened threat.”

So the plot of the film was good, not great, but solid. Firstly I liked the backstory involving the main villain, different races and the Mother Boxes, that along with certain dialogue about locations, history and characters helped flesh out the world and create mythology that was interesting and intriguing, it not only built on what we got in Man of Steel, Batman V Superman and Wonder Woman, but helped make this film more engaging and left the door open for future films to build on. I also appreciated how the story was simple, yet layered with themes relating to teamwork, death, leadership, moving on from the past and finding courage in the face of uncertainty. There was also some wonderful references to the comics with certain scenes and dialogue which made me smile a lot too. That being said there were some issues, certain scenes dragged or felt boring, there were some tonal inconsistencies, and some of the humour was good and some of it fell a bit flat and ill-timed. And some of the plot decisions were a little basic and certain dramatic or important elements were resolved quickly without enough time to simmer.

As for the cast, I liked them, some more than others. Let’s start with¬†Ben Affleck as¬†Batman/Bruce Wayne, now some people like him as Batman, some hate him, I¬†fall into the former category. Affleck’s portrayal of Batman was one of my favourite¬†parts of BvS and he’s put to better use in this film. I liked how Bruce was strong-willed, focused, yet reckless and uncertain. Gal Gadot was quite good as Wonder Woman, it was interesting her in the modern world, dealing with issues not only with her past but also with some of the actions of her teammates too, Gadot has certainly found her groove with this role and besides being super beautiful, she’s confident, strong and smart. Ezra Miller as The Flash was a worry for me before watching this film because of my love for Grant Gustin’s version, but I did like this cooky, strange and lighthearted guy, he was mainly there for comic relief, but he some serious and smart moments too, and Miller’s charisma was magnetic. Jason Momoa as Aquaman was cool, he’s this serious, yet chilled out and funny kind of guy who does the right thing when the tie is right. The real surprise was¬†Ray Fisher as Cyborg, I thought he looked like the most boring character from the trailers and he ended up being one of my highlights of the team with his attitude towards the way he was created, his interactions with the team and his importance to the plot, Fisher’s portrayal was quite engaging. The team as a whole had a wonderful dynamic filled with humorous and aggressive tendencies which made their eventual formation and scenes on and off of the battlefield nice.

Ciar√°n¬†Hinds had a nice intimidating presence as the voice as Steppenwolf, unfortunately, the villain was a little on the generic side. I also liked Henry Cavill is definitely in the film and he was quite good (not a spoiler, it’s in the trailers), Jeremy Irons as Alfred was just as fun, as he was in BvS offering insightful information while providing some good jokes here and there, seeing the return of Connie Nielsen as Queen Hippolyta, was welcomed, Amy Adams and Diane Lane was fine as¬†Lois Lane and Martha Kent, Joe Morton as Silas Stone was fine, but I thought it was more interesting that he was the guy from Terminator 2 in this film haha, and Amber Heard’s introduction to this world as Mera was cool. And finally, J.K. Simmons as¬†Commissioner Gordon was good and liked his version of the character, I just wish there was more of him, there wasn’t enough! ūüėõ

When it comes to the presentation it was good for the most part. Visually the film was nice, the was some lovely attention to detail with the way certain shots were framed and the cinematography the action sequences were a mixture of creative and fun scenes that ranged from the heroes fighting the bad guy, to the heroes fighting each other and many others, and it looked great. But there were a few moments where following the action was a little tricky, the GCI was also a little dodgy with certain faces, body movements and¬†locations lacking in detail. The music from Danny Elfman was something I was paying attention to from the beginning and I quite enjoyed it. Elfman’s score is one that has a presence, it is full of impact, drama, triumph, playfulness and while it isn’t as memorable as some of his previous work, the way he worked in the classic Batman and Superman themes, from Batman 89′ and Superman 78′ was delightful.

In conclusion, what can I say? I liked Justice League, it was much better than I expected considering my low expectations, and while this film doesn’t reinvent the genre or does anything in an amazing fashion, it was pretty fun with some good action, good characters and solid music. Besides issues with the story, tone and villain, the film was certainly a step in the right direction for this cinematic universe,

So have you seen Justice League and if so what did you think of it? Was it better or worse than you expected? Also, how does it compare to the previous DCEU films? Please leave your thoughts in the comment section below and I’ll see ya in the next review, laters! ūüėÄ

 
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Posted by on November 20, 2017 in Film Reviews, Reviews

 

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QUICK REVIEW: Zootopia (Zootropolis)

Howdy ladies and gents, time for a new film review and today I’m finally getting around to talking about the latest film from Disney; Zootopia (aka Zootropolis for us over here in the UK). I’ve been looking forward to this film for a while since I heard a lot of good things about the footage shown at D23 last year, and thanks to Cineworld and their early Unlimited screenings I’ve gotten to see the film a little earlier than its eventually release a few weeks from now.

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So the story goes down like this:

“In a world where animals have adapted to the world like humans, Judy Hopps is bunny who has dreamed of being a police officer since she was young and when she finally reaches her goal things don’t initially turn out the way she’d hoped. However when a big case comes her way, she must form an unlikely alliance with a crafty fox named Nick Wilde to uncover the mystery of her case and prove herself as a true enforcer of the law.”

Zootopia’s story represents Disney at it’s best with a tale that was familiar, yet fun, hilarious and heartwarming. One of my favourite aspects of this film was that it was able to strike that balance between being funny and serious, the sense of humour and timing of the jokes whether they’re physical or verbal, they’re done here so well. When the film wasn’t being light and funny, it did touch upon themes of prejudice, discrimination and stereotypes, and it was handled with such realism and felt very relevant to present times. This story felt like classic Disney with all the standard codes and conventions you’d expect with certain character and story beats, but with some modernization that made the film feel even fresher than previous Disney films especially with the use of technology and dialogue. I was surprised by how much this film got me emotionally, there were some absolutely delightful and joyful moments in this film, but then there were some super emotional and heartbreaking moments that resonated with some of my life experiences that reminded me of why I love Disney films so much.

The cast was all great in their roles. Ginnifer Goodwin was incredible as Officer Judy Hopps, this character was so tenacious, upbeat and relatable that she was easy to root for and I loved her backstory and journey throughout the film. And Jason Bateman was also awesome as Nick Wilde, Nick was cool, slick and had a way with words, but beyond his external demeanour was a much deeper character who was just as relatable as Judy. Together Judy and Nick had some wonderful chemistry and some of their more dramatic scenes together were some of my favourite parts of the film. Idris Elba was badass as Chief Bogo, this guy was really good and Elba really excelled in this role where you could feel his charm, intensity and personality through this character even though you couldn’t see his face.¬† J.K. Simmons was great as Mayor Leodore Lionheart, much like Elba, Simmons’ voice added an extra layer of awesomeness to the character and made them more engaging. Jenny Slate did was a wonderful job as she was both cute and funny as Dawn Bellwether,¬† Tommy Chong and¬†Octavia Spencer were good as Yax and Mrs. Otterton, and Nate Torrence was just lovely as Officer Benjamin Clawhauser, because he was so bubbly and funny. Shakira was also fun as Gazelle, Bonnie Hunt and¬†Don Lake were great as Bonnie and Stu Hopps, Alan Tudyk had some great moments as Duke Weaselton, Maurice LaMarche did very well as Mr. Big and Raymond S. Persi had some of the best moments as Flash.

Oh and the presentation was AMAZING! I don’t know how Disney have kept doing it, but with one of their new films come out, they find a way to up themselves when it comes to the visual side of things with insanely good CGI and art direction. This film’s locations, lighting and weather effects looked so real that if you took the animals out of the equation it would look pretty close to a live-action film. And speaking of the animals of them were uniquely crafted little such great attention to detail with the hair, facial and body movements, and I liked how the animators were able to make these humanoid characters retain all of their animal-like qualities. And the film score by Michael Giacchino was very nice and the song “Try Everything” by Shakira was really catchy too.

At the end of the day with Zootopia, Disney are still teaching life lessons and providing audiences young and old with entertaining material which is topical, lighthearted, emotional and funny. I cannot recommend this film enough as it may be my favourite Disney film in recent memory and I can’t wait to see it again.

Rating: 8.5/10

So have you seen or are you going to watch Zootopia? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to drop them in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! ūüėÄ

 
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Posted by on March 13, 2016 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Say “I’ll Be Back!” in this Terminator Genisys Review

Hello there people of the internet, man it feels like I’ve been gone for a while now (even though its only been a few days), but after some recovery time I’m back with a fresh film review in the form of Terminator Genisys. Now I’ve made it no secret that since the first trailer hit the web I was not a fan, it looked interesting, but also like a jumbled version of Terminator’s greatest hits. I was curious but wary, but it was after the second trailer came out that I (along with the rest of the world) not only got more interested in Genisys but also believed that we saw a massive spoiler in the trailer. From that point I had hope that the film would be at least decent. So I watched it last night and now it’s time to pass judgement!

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The story can be summed up as the following:

“John Connor sends Kyle Reese back in time to protect Sarah Connor, but when he arrives in 1984, nothing is as he expected it to be. Now Sarah and Kyle along with an aged T-800 Terminator go on an epic journey to change fate and save the future from Skynet.”

The plot overall was decent, but was a very messy affair. Now what I liked about the film was the first 20 minutes or so. It was clear, simple, different, yet nostalgic, cool and fun. I have to give the filmmakers props for their faithfulness and references to the older Terminator films as there are references galore for hardcore fans that know their material especially when it comes to Terminator 1 & 2 and a there’s even a bit of 3 and Salvation in there too. But after that initial nostalgia trip and the film goes off on its own tangent that’s where things get convoluted. This film tries to do so much, at times the story is hard to follow because there’s so much going on with the time travelling, new and returning characters and presenting new scenarios. However the story goes to places without explaining certain things, some of the time travelling elements get really confusing and come across as more messy than smart and there’s some emotional aspects in this film that just don’t feel earned or carry as much weight as they should do. And finally the film has humour and some of it work but other times it’s not as funny. Oh and I have to mention the whole John Connor thing that was spoiled in the second trailer, I won’t go into specifics for those unaware of it, but the second trailer really did ruin a massive aspect of the story and while there’s more to the film, the marketing team and whoever put that trailer together should be fired for revealing something that would have been much better off seen in the film on its own.

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As for the cast they vary from being decent to being bad, I think it is just due to the fact some of the actors are miscast in their roles. But one thing that does remain constant is Arnold Schwarzenegger as The Terminator (aka Guardian/Pops). Schwarzenegger is the best thing about this film, after so many years the man still has it, that awesome screen presence, the dead stare, great delivery with dialogue and it feels right. I could probably see Schwarzenegger do this role for good few more years as he’s not lost his touch and it he was so great to watch. Jason Clarke as John Connor he was pretty good and I liked his energy for the role, but again he just wasn’t the best in this role. Emilia Clarke as Sarah Connor. Having someone like Daenerys Targaryen in the role of Sarah frigging Connor seems like a good idea, but Clarke doesn’t have the right kind of physicality, screen presence or badassery that we associate with this iconic character. Clarke does a decent job, but not a great one and its mean to compare Clarke to Linda Hamilton but she can’t pull it off. Jai Courtney as Kyle Reese, man he wasn’t good. Courtney is an actor I don’t mind and want to see improve, however he’s always in such bad films and his performances aren’t the best and that is the case with this film. Courtney just doesn’t have the right kind of emotional depth to him and when you compare him to Michael Biehn, Courtney doesn’t compare, he doesn’t have the wit, charm or the everyman look to him. Lee Byung-hun was pretty good as the T-1000, I just wish there was more of him. J. K. Simmons as Detective O’Brien was pretty funny and I liked him but I was hoping that Simmons’ role was going to be a little more significant in the film. As for Matt Smith’s role in this film, I won’t reveal what it is because it is a massive spoiler, that being said it was pretty disappointing though I did like Smith’s American accent.

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When it comes to the presentation. Visually the film looks nice, the CGI for the most part is very clean and sharp and is used well in the big set pieces sequences and the action for the most part is pretty good. But the film just doesn’t have anything super memorable about the action sequences, there’s nothing that is unique or totally badass them and in the modern age of action films that’s not a good thing. I did appreciate the use of colour, lighting and atmosphere the film tried to put across. As for the music, Lorne Balfe’s film score does nothing to elevate the film. It has no charisma, drama or memorable themes and this film barely capitalizes on the iconic themes from the previous films.

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In conclusion the Terminator Genisys is decent, but isn’t the film I was hoping for. In a way I knew the film would end up in the way that it did, but I had hoped that Alan Taylor and the star power behind this film would produce a better result, but that is unfortunately not the case. That being said, the film was better than I expected with some great references to the first film and a great central performance from Arnold Schwarzenegger. If this film was streamlined and a little more focused, it would have been miles better, however what we’re left with is a decent return to the Terminator franchise. Hopefully the sequels can only go up from here.

Rating: 6/10

So what do you think of Terminator Genisys? Did you like the film, think it was alright or hate it? Please leave your thoughts below and I’ll see ya on the next review yo. ūüôā

 
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Posted by on July 6, 2015 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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My Thoughts on the Oscars 2015

Good day to you ladies and gentlemen of the interweb, it seems like the Oscars has come and gone once again and I feel like I should give you my quick thoughts on it.

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Now I have to say, unlike last year, I didn’t have much interest in the awards season. I skipped the Golden Globes and the BAFTAS and I was almost going to skip the Oscars too, but after the nominations came out I was curious to see who would win. So before talking about the winners I have to say that I did not watch the Oscars this year because 1) I was too tired. 2) It feels more like something to watch with friends and I didn’t have my best mate with me like last year. And 3) It just didn’t feel the same kind of hype and unexpected mystery that came with last year’s event.

Anyways with all that being said here are the winners:

Best Picture

Winner: Birdman

American Sniper

Boyhood

The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Imitation Game

Selma

The Theory of Everything

Whiplash

Best director

Winner: Alejandro G Inarritu, Birdman

Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel

Richard Linklater, Boyhood

Bennett Miller, Foxcatcher

Morten Tyldum, The Imitation Game

Best Actor

Winner: Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything

Steve Carell, Foxcatcher

Bradley Cooper, American Sniper

Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game

Michael Keaton, Birdman

Best Actress

Winner: Julianne Moore, Still Alice

Marion Cotillard, Two Days, One Night

Felicity Jones, The Theory of Everything

Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl

Reese Witherspoon, Wild

Best Supporting Actor

Winner: JK Simmons, Whiplash

Robert Duvall, The Judge

Ethan Hawke, Boyhood

Edward Norton, Birdman

Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher

Best Supporting Actress

Winner: Patricia Arquette, Boyhood

Laura Dern, Wild

Keira Knightley, The Imitation Game

Emma Stone, Birdman

Meryl Streep, Into the Woods

Best Adapted Screenplay

Winner: The Imitation Game

American Sniper

Inherent Vice

The Theory of Everything

Whiplash

Best Original Screenplay

Winner: Birdman

Boyhood

Foxcatcher

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Nightcrawler

Best Animated Feature

Winner: Big Hero 6

The Boxtrolls

How to Train Your Dragon 2

Song of the Sea

The Tale of Princess Kaguya

Best Animated Short

Winner: Feast

The Bigger Picture

The Dam Keeper

Me and My Moulton

A Single Life

Best Cinematography

Winner: Birdman

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Ida

Mr Turner

Unbroken

Best Costume Design

Winner: The Grand Budapest Hotel

Inherent Vice

Into the Woods

Maleficent

Mr Turner

Best Documentary Feature

Winner: CitizenFour

Finding Vivian Maier

Last Days in Vietnam

The Salt of the Earth

Virunga

Best Documentary Short

Winner: Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1

Joanna

Our Curse

The Reaper

White Earth

Best Film Editing

Winner: Whiplash

American Sniper

Boyhood

The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Imitation Game

Best Foreign Language Film

Winner: Ida (Poland)

Leviathan (Russia)

Tangerines (Estonia)

Timbuktu (Mauritania)

Wild Tales (Argentina)

Best Live Action Short

Winner: The Phone Call

Aya

Boogaloo and Graham

Butter Lamp (La Lampe Au Beurre De Yak)

Parvaneh

Best Make-up & Hairstyling

Winner: The Grand Budapest Hotel

Foxcatcher

Guardians of the Galaxy

Best original score
Winner: The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Imitation Game

Interstellar

Mr Turner

The Theory of Everything

Best Production Design

Winner: The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Imitation Game

Interstellar

Into the Woods

Mr Turner

Best Song

Winner: Glory, Selma

Everything is Awesome, The Lego Movie

Grateful, Beyond the Lights

I’m Not Gonna Miss You, Glen Campbell‚Ķ I’ll Be Me

Lost Stars, Begin Again

Best Sound Editing

Winner: American Sniper

Birdman

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Interstellar

Unbroken

Best Sound Mixing

Winner: Whiplash

American Sniper

Birdman

Interstellar

Unbroken

Best Visual Effects

Winner: Interstellar

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Guardians of the Galaxy

X-Men: Days of Future Past

Well what do I think of this year’s winners? Well it is a combination of happiness and lack of interest. The main winners I was happy about was:

  • J.K. Simmons Winning Best Supporting Actor: While it could be argued that he should have been in he Best Actor category, the fact that he won just makes me happy. His performance in Whiplash was one the best of last year and was too intense to ignore.
  • Eddie Redmayne Wins Best Actor: While his performance in Jupiter Ascending left people cringing, what he did in The Theory of Everything was too incredible to dismiss, the performance that he did was insanely good.
  • Patricia Arquette Wins Best Actress: All I have to say is that this woman did such a great job in Boyhood and was the clear winner, good stuff.
  • Big Hero 6 Wins Best Animated Film: While I could argue that How To Train Your Dragon 2 was a slightly better emotional experience, Disney’s latest animated feature was far too much fun to ignore.
  • Glory Wins Best Original Song: Of all the films that came out, Selma had the song that I remembered the most and felt an emotional connection to. While The Lego Movie has a very addictive and fun song, “Glory” is just far too touching to not have won.

Other than those awards specifically I’m not that fussed about anything else because it was either predictable or not that important to me. I am very happy for The Grand Budapest Hotel as it got so many awards, but since it was one of SUPER favourite films of last year I won’t be jumping over the moon about it. I didn’t see Still Alice so I can’t talk about how good Julianne Moore was and I STILL haven;t seen Birdman so I can’t tell whether it was a better film than Whiplash (my favourite film of 2014 if it had come out in the UK beforehand).

In conclusion I think I may have cared if I had watched the event on TV or online, maybe I would have cared more if some films haven’t been snubbed back in the Oscar nominations. But as it stands I am happy for some of the winners, but most of them were on the predictable side.

So what do you think of the results of this year’s Oscars? Did the films that won deserve to win or not? If you watched it this year did it live up to your expectations or were you disappointed? Leave your comments below and I’ll catch ya later. ūüėÄ

 
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Posted by on February 23, 2015 in Films, Media

 

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LATE REVIEW: Whiplash

Howdy ladies and gents, I have returned after a few days with a new film review and today I’m FINALLY getting around to talking about Whiplash. I’ve heard so much about the film and since its release in America I’ve heard everyone sing its praises, but I hadn’t seen it and even after its UK release this year I had to wait even longer to view it because my local cinema never bothered to show it. However, I saw it and I’m gonna say this right now, Whiplash is one of the best films I have ever seen, period.

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The plot can be summarised as the following: Andrew Neiman is a student jazz drummer and we following him on his journey to become the best drummer ever as seeks the respect and approval of a monstrous teacher, Terence Fletcher.

Talk about an intense film.¬†At the time of me writing this review my heart is still pounding from the intensity of this film, that’s how much of an impression it left on me. Whiplash has a story that would be familiar and relatable to any person who has tried really hard at something that they are passionate about, whether they succeed or failed. This film deals with themes of dedication, passion and obsession. This film is about a power struggle between two opposing forces, both of them want the same thing, but have very different means of how they wish obtain perfection. The amount of tension in this film is unreal with so many moments throughout making sit so still just waiting to see what happens next, its heart-pounding action on the highest level. And that ending, my god, talk about edge-of-your-seat action, one of the most tension-filled, heartfelt and satisfying endings to any film I’ve seen in a long time.

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Now let’s talk about that cast. Let’s talk about Miles Teller as Andrew Neiman, bloody hell what a performance. Neiman is a bit of a loner and hangs out with his father, the only outlet he has is drumming and after he comes into contact with Fletcher his drumming technique becomes everything and he works his ass off just to get the approval of one of the meanest teachers ever. Neiman wants to be the best and he goes above and beyond to become the best, to the way he trains and see how fixated he becomes on this hobby after meeting Fletcher shows how much drumming really means to him whether he’s mashing up his hands, getting pissed off at Fletcher or shutting out the people that care about him. Teller commits to this role 100% as he is charming, dedicated and emotive as this kid who literally bleeds for his passion and you feel for him every step of the way. And then there’s J. K. Simmons as Terence Fletcher. Bloody hell, talk about mean. He is a jazz instructor who gives out tough love, but it is only to get the best out of his students and while you understand why he does what he does, it still feels like he steps over the line. Fletcher must be the most disgusting, abusive and cruel teacher in the history of existence, not since Agatha Trunchbull has there been such a mean person who verbally assaults students, however this guy is worse. He verbally rapes anyone who isn’t on-point and he doesn’t care who is watching, and for Neiman is like having the weight of the world on his shoulders. Simmons is so magnetic and attacks this role with such force and aggression, when he’s angry it’s like a frigging hurricane comes and knocks everything over. Also Paul Reiser and Melissa Benoist are good as Jim Neiman and Nicole.

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Oh and the presentation was gorgeous. The film was shot really well with a lot of great lighting, moody colours and great editing and camera shots were used in the music sequences where each scene moving along with the same amount of aggression or style as the jazz itself. Oh and the music, dear god, the music. I’m a big fan of jazz music, I believe it is one of the most universal forms of music to get down with and enjoy and this film has all of the right sounds. The music is perfection with all those gorgeous horns, pianos, percussion and everything, from the small sessions to be big performances, it was the best thing ever.

In conclusion Whiplash was amazing. I wasn’t sure if it would meet the hype after all of the time I spent reading reviews and hearing people go on about, but I guess seeing is believing. The story was great, the two lead performances were astonishing and the soundtrack was perfect. I cannot recommend this film enough, it is awesome. End of.

Rating: 10/10 (Yeah a perfect rating, haven’t given one of those out in a long time)

So have you seen Whiplash (and let’s be honest everyone ha at this point) 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 ya on the nest review. Laters! ūüėÄ

 
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Posted by on February 19, 2015 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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J.K. Simmons Joins Kong: Skull Island, Set For 2017 Release

Yo yo people of the internet, time for some film news. Recently there has been some news about the upcoming King Kong reboot film and I thought I should talk about it. The following information comes from superherohype:

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On Friday, we learned that Legendary Pictures had shifted the release date for their upcoming film Kong: Skull Island from November of 2016 to spring 2017, and now Deadline brings word that actor J.K. Simmons has signed on to appear in the film. A fan-favorite to genre fans for his role as J. Jonah Jameson in the ‚ÄúSpider-Man‚ÄĚ films, Simmons can currently be seen in the film Whiplash and will appear in Terminator Genisys next summer.

Simmons joins a cast that thus far only includes another comic book movies veteran, Tom Hiddleston. Directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts (The Kings of Summer) and written by John Gatins (Flight) and Max Borenstein (Godzilla), Kong: Skull Island will fully immerse audiences in the mysterious and dangerous home of the king of the apes as a team of explorers ventures deep inside the treacherous, primordial island. Legendary’s story honors the foundations of existing King Kong lore, but places it in an entirely new, distinct timeline.

Thomas Tull and Jon Jashni will produce and Alex Garcia will executive produce. The film will be released in 3D and IMAX 3D by Universal Pictures on March 10, 2017.

 So there is three things I have taken away from this recent film news:

  1. ‘Skull Island’ has now become ‘Kong: Skull Island’ (probably just to better associate itself with King Kong himself)
  2. The film has moved from 2016 to 2017 but only by around four months
  3. J.K. Simmons has joined the film’s cast

I think the biggest news worth talking about is the involvement of J. K. Simmons. Simmons is one of my favourite actors to see in films, even if he isn’t part of the main cast, it is alway nice to see his face. If you ever want someone some good talent for your film, Simmons is always a good choice. It will be interesting to see what he brings to both this and Terminator Genisys. I actually forgot that Tom Hiddleston was attached to this film until I read the article, but since there has been such a gap between casting it is easy to forget. But it is nice to know that we have two very talented actors in this film. I’ll be interested to see what other news comes out for this film in the coming months, 2017 seems so far away but it looks like it’ll be great year for films. ūüôā

 
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Posted by on December 15, 2014 in Films, Media

 

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Terminator Genisys Trailer #1 Quick Review

Hello there people of the internet, time for a trailer review and this one is certainly interesting as we have the first trailer next instalment in the Terminator series, Terminator Genisys. This is a film I’ve been cautiously watching from afar and each time a new piece of information has come out my interested has dropped and increased each time. Now we finally have a trailer so I’m quickly going to give you my thoughts.

Check out the trailer below:

My immediate thoughts after seeing the trailer? I’m not sure. Obviously that is not a good answer at all, but in truth I’m not sure what to make of this trailer. It has a lot of the old key elements of the previous films but it does have a modern action film feel, both things intrigue and worry me.

So from what I understand from the trailer, this film takes place in the future, again, and humans are at war with machines and it looks like they’re on the losing side. So in classic fashion John Connor (Jason Clarke) sends Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) back to save his mother, Sarah Connor (Emilia Clarke), however, Kyle gets sent back to an alternative past where things different and not as he was informed about. This Sarah Connor is battle-ready and badass, is full aware of her destiny and has been trained by the an aging T-800 (Arnold Schwarzenegger). It looks like the T-1000 Terminator (or something similar) is already chasing after her as well.

I have to give the people behind this film props for changing the story formula that we’ve come to know since 1984, but still remain faithful to the old films. I get vibes primarily from Terminator 1 & 2 and a bit of Salvation. Its like everything has been streamlined into one main story and mixed around with some new ingredients as well. It is both quite refreshing and worrying. I like how we’re not reliving the past and are getting something new, but at the same time I’m not sure if all of the changes will work. I like the visual presentations for the most part, the future looks very rich in colour, explosions and has nice cinematography and in the past the liquid Terminator looks as cool as ever. Character-wise Jason Clarke seems good as John Connor, though I can’t really see Clarke as John Connor from a visual standpoint. I like Emilia Clarke’s version of Sarah Connor, she seems capably badass, obviously not Linda Hamilton kind of badass, but she seems worthy. Jai Courtney as Kyle Reese, I have yet to see if he’ll do well, but he seems alright. Then there’s Byung-hun Lee as this new version of the T-1000 and he looks like he’ll be doing a similar performance to that of Robert Patrick in Terminator 2. There’s no sign into of Matt Smith or J. K. Simmons, so I’m curious to know how they fit into this film. If there’s one thing I hated about this trailer, it was the music, terrible and generic choices for the beginning song and the instrumental stuff towards the end, and the classic Terminator drum beat, it was alright but not as effective as I thought it would be.

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In conclusion the Terminator Genisys trailer looks better than I thought it would, the combination of previous film storylines mixed in with a new one is quite intriguing, though some of the CG-heavy scenes and questionable delivery of the classic lines keep me cautious. I’m more interested in this film then I was before, though, this film still has its work cut out for it to be considered one of the films to look out for in 2015.

So what do you think of the first trailer for Terminator Genisys? Are you down with it or are you filled with hatred? Please leave your thoughts below and I’ll see ya on the next review yo. ūüôā

 
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Posted by on December 4, 2014 in Films, Media

 

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Month of Superhero Film Reviews: Spider-Man 3

Howdy ladies and gentlemen and welcome to Day #3 of my¬†Month of Superhero Film Reviews!¬†During this month I‚Äôll be reviewing of some of the best and worst comic book adapted films.¬†Okay so we reviewed Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2, now it’s time to conclude the Sam Raimi Spider-Man trilogy with what is regarded as one of the worst superhero films ever and the one film that killed this otherwise great series,¬†Spider-Man 3.

Oh god, you and I both know that you don’t have to watch this film to know that it sucks, but for the sake of the review I’ll put myself through this hell. Bloody hell, how did Sam Raimi, his crew and Sony go so wrong with this film, it was gonna be huge and had the potential to be the best in the series. In the end it was huge alright… A HUGE LOAD OF ASS! But anyways I’ll save my ranting and raving for now, let’s talk about film section by section starting with the story.

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So the story in Spider-Man 3 is set months after the last film, here Peter Parker¬†enjoys a successful life as Spider-Man because the city of New York love him. However those times of peace are disrupted when Flint Marko,¬†an escaped convict comes into play as the new villain Sandman. Add to Parker’s troubles that the fact that¬†Harry Osborn¬†still wants Peter dead because of what happened to his father, he’s also having relationship problems with Mary Jane, we also have the introduction of Eddy Brock at the Daily Bugle and the alien symbiote too.

Argh! The story alone in this film and the way its handled is just stupid, absurd and very frustrating to watch considering that source material is so strong, but I’ll moan about that later, let’s talk about the cast first.

While I can’t hate the cast too much because of the script they had to work with, I can’t say that some of these performances aren’t out of the area of criticism. Firstly there’s¬†Tobey Maguire¬†as¬†Peter Parker/Spider-Man. Man, if people didn’t like Maguire as Parker before then they definitely won’t in this film. Some of Maguire’s acting was cheesy enough but in this film there are things I can’t forget and it really hurt me. Nuff said. As for Kirsten Dunst¬†as¬†Mary Jane Watson, by this point in the series I didn’t really care for her character, plus she’s a bit of a player, I mean she’s gone with Peter, Harry, John and Flash, makes me wonder if the series had continued what other men would she have taken? And then there’s¬†James Franco¬†as¬†Harry Osborn/New Goblin, his character I didn’t mind as much as the previous two and I liked his dark and underhanded nature. But there were some inconsistencies and silly moments that I can’t ignore.

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Oh then there’s¬†Thomas Haden Church¬†as¬†Flint Marko/Sandman. I’m gonna be straight with you lot, I didn’t like this character, at all. Haden Church I don’t believe was the right man for this role and while I’m not overly aware of Sandman’s origins in the comics, this version of him was only relevant for a bit and was sort of forgotten about and then brought back a little while after because he was apparently relevant again… And then there’s frigging¬†Topher Grace¬†as¬†Eddie Brock/Venom. I can sum him up as both characters in one word: DISGUSTING! NEXT!

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Now we have¬†Bryce Dallas Howard¬†as¬†Gwen Stacy, probably the best thing to come out of this film when it comes to the new cast. I mean sure her character is hardly relevant and she was basically shoehorned into the film but Dallas Howard is so hot in this film it is worth watching just for her alone.¬†Rosemary Harris¬†as Aunt¬†May¬†was good and gave use a nice performance even though it was in a smaller capacity than before. And lastly¬†J. K. Simmons¬†still makes for a good¬†J. Jonah Jameson, unfortunately there’s not nearly as much screen time for him as there was before.

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When it comes to the presentation it decent but not nearly a good overall when compared to the last two films. Firstly the CGI and special effects are good for the most part and have improved a great deal from Spider-Man 2, this makes for some very nice-looking action sequences, the best of which is Peter and Harry’s¬†aerial fight and when Spider-Man saves Gwen Stacy. Those are the best scenes in the film. Everything else is just not up to par and has too much special effects. As for the soundtrack, it sucks! There’s no Danny Elfman! It bugs me that Elfman and Sam Raimi couldn’t come to an agreement when Spider-Man 3 came out, instead we have Christopher Young who borrows Elfman’s themes while creating new ones for this film. The end result is a soundtrack that seriously lacks the impact that the previous films had, besides the songs when Sandman disappears near the end of the film and when the old themes are being used, the rest of the soundtrack is weak.

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Ah man! After watching this film again today I actually hate it more than I did before. There used to be some things I actually liked, but I guess after turning 23 my opinion has changed a great deal since the last time I saw this film.

So what worked in the film? Well only a tiny set of things like:

  • The first fight between Peter and Harry, that was some different and dynamic stuff
  • Bryce Dallas Howard, she was incredibly hot and totally showed up Kirsten Dunst
  • The Spider-Man crane scene when he saves Gwen Stacy, that’s cool
  • Peter and MJ’s break-up, that was nicely done and was kind of heartbreaking

As for the stuff that didn’t work? Take your pick, this film is filled with stuff that didn’t work. But here’s the main offenders:

  • Why in the holy mother of heck was Flint Marko the killer of Uncle Ben? Who thought that plot twist was smart? It basically took a shit on the first film and made everything that happened prior to this film pointless!
  • Having 3 villains in one film, such a foolish idea
  • Topher Grace as Eddy Brock, who the hell cast this guy? HE SUCKS! He totally kills the character in every way
  • Venom. Nuff said.
  • The black suit, it looked horrible and its powers were never fully looked into or explained
  • Shoehorning characters like Gwen Stacy and Eddy Brock/Venom into the film knowing that those characters are popular in the franchise and really needed more development
  • Peter Parker the Emo
  • Tobey Maguire dancing in the street
  • The whole jazz bar scene, that is just something I’ll never recover from… EVER

And lastly how does it compare to the comics? Well let me put it like this: HA! It literally takes the source material and takes a big dump on it. Besides having some similar-looking elements it was terrible. Firstly what the hell did they do to Venom? The character got completely butchered! The look of the costume was wrong, he was so small and ugly and poorly handled when it came to his powers, he wasn’t even the main villain which was terrible! With that in mind I feel the need to mention the symbiote in general, how it showed up the films is unlike the comics and its powers were so dumbed down and was never fully shown in the film, there was so much more that could have been done and yet what we got was this poor imitation! Also the New Goblin, that was just lazy. I’m all for change in adaptations but that was just weak, also how come Harry can take the gas that his father did in the first film but come out without going all crazy? Inconsistencies! There’s so much more I could moan about but I’m gonna leave it here for now.

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In conclusion Spider-Man 3 is one of those films that will be forever hated and for good reason. It tried to do too much, changed many of the basic elements that made the previous two films so successful and basically hurt me mentally and physically in ways I’ll never recover from. I used to give this film the benefit of the doubt, but no longer, it sucks and that’s all there is to it. I still blame Sony for this!

Rating: 5/10 (There’s tiny elements of good, but they’re hidden away behind all the crappy parts!)

So there’s my review people, only 27 more to go. So have you seen Spider-Man 3 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 3, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Month of Superhero Film Reviews: Spider-Man 2

Howdy ladies and gentlemen and welcome to my¬†Month of Superhero Film Reviews!¬†During this month I‚Äôll be reviewing of some of the best and worst comic book adapted films.¬†Alrighty then we’re on Day #2 of these superhero film reviews and now we continue with the Sam Raimi Spider-Man trilogy with what is arguably one of the best superhero films in existence and one of my all-time favourite films, Spider-Man 2.

So after the success of Spider-Man in 2002 a sequel had to be made right? So enter Spider-Man 2, released in 2004, and at the time it was a highly anticipated film. The first film had set the stakes pretty high, I don’t think people were ready for the epicness that would follow.

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In terms of the plot this film is set two years after Spider-Man, and focuses on Peter Parker struggling to manage both his personal life and his duties as Spider-Man. We also get a new villain in the shape of Dr. Otto Octavius, a scientist who becomes Doctor Octopus after an experiment fuses four mechanical tentacles to his back. And it is down to Spider-Man to stop new threat from destroying the city of New York.

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To say that I love this film would be an understatement. I ADORE THIS FILM! Before I watched The Shawshank Redemption this was my number one favourite film. If that doesn’t speak volumes about how much I love this film I dunno what will. I’ve watched this film so many times I know it inside and out, and I quote it almost all the time especially with my best friend Chris.

When it comes to the cast all of the returning members are on top form as well as the new additions to the cast.¬†Tobey Maguire¬†as¬†Peter Parker/Spider-Man¬†is still awesome. In this film you can really see that Parker’s life is in the worst place possible and Maguire excels in showing us the emotional strains of have a dual life as a hero and an everyday person. As for¬†Kirsten Dunst¬†as¬†Mary Jane Watson¬†I feel like her character was a little more developed and had more to do, while she may not again be the MJ from the comics, she does well here and has good chemistry with Maguire. But why in the holy mother of hell did she go ginger in this film, Mary Jane is meant to be a red-head! Anyway moving on…¬†James Franco¬†as¬†Harry Osborn¬†was awesome, this was the film that really made me like Franco as an actor. Harry now is now the head of his father’s company, but behind the shadows he still¬†holds a resentment against Spider-Man over his father’s death. And because of Peter’s position as Spider-Man it puts a very difficult strain on their friendship. I loved seeing Harry evolve in this film and see how Spider-Man started to effect their relationship to the point of deterioration.

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Now let’s talk about¬†Alfred Molina¬†as¬†Dr. Otto Octavius/Doctor Octopus. If I had to sum him up in one sentence it’d be this: He was bloody awesome. Now this is a villain that not only could go toe to toe with Spidey in a fight, but also had a more complex story and likeable personality. Doc Ock has style but is also ferocious and unpredictable. I love Molina in this role! We also get some more beautiful moments of¬†Rosemary Harris¬†as¬†May Parker, her scenes with Peter are so heartfelt and dramatic, it gets me all emotional. And of course¬†J.K. Simmons¬†as¬†J. Jonah Jameson¬†is still playing the character so well that it is unreal. Simmons handles his dialogue and scenes with such charisma and¬†finesse that he’s just perfect and hilarious at the same time.

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There are also great contributions from Donna Murphy as Rosalie Octavius, the wonderful appearance of Dylan Baker as Dr. Curt Connors and the small appearance of Willem Dafoe as Norman Osborn near the end of the film too which is awesome!

In terms of the presentation, in Spider-Man 2 it is near flawless. After this film came out I expected this level of quality in all future superhero films. Visually it is AMAZING. The CGI and special effects were so much higher than the last film and it made for some incredible action sequences, that well beautifully shot and perfectly choreographed. The Spidey vs. Doc Ock train fight will always be one of my favourite moments in any film ever. As for the soundtrack Danny Elfman takes the foundations of what he did in the first film and elevated it by ten, the themes in this film are so beautiful it’ll have you in tears.

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Now even though I love this film to pieces, there are a few issues here and there. Firstly the CGI and special effects, while miles better than the first film do look a little too obvious at points. Also I guess it comes down to that cheesy and sometimes awkward corny nature that this film series has too. But other than those its hard for me to criticize a film I love so much.

As for how it compares to the comics well it does take a few cues from it pretty well like the constant struggle that Pete has between his personal life and his life as Spider-Man or when Peter decides to give up being Spider-Man which is taken from taken from The Amazing Spider-Man No. 50. There is also how Doc Ock is able to go up against Spidey equally in a fight and how he still has a dark sense of humour too.

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Oh and lastly I wanted to mention Spider-Man 2.1, the extended version of Spider-Man 2 that featured 8 minutes of unseen footage. I’ve only seen it twice in the 5-6 years that I’ve owned it but I felt the need to bring it up. The new footage dotted around the film, while not all of it necessary does add to the overall narrative and character development. Because of this additional footage we see more interaction between Peter and Harry, we also see Mary Jane and her friend discussing her engagement. There’s also an extended scene with the doctor examining Peter and lastly there is an amusing scene with Jameson in his office wearing the Spider-Man costume too. Again some of the additional footage is cut for good reason while other parts just help flesh out the material that’s already there.

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In conclusion Spider-Man 2 is just one of those exceptional films that really not only excels as comic book film, but really works as a great action popcorn flick due to its great storytelling, character development and incredible action sequences. Obviously the film came out almost 10 years ago and the film does have its flaws here and there, but to not acknowledge how great this film is in the superhero genre would be a crime. This is still one of the finest films in the superhero genre and I can’t recommend it enough.

Rating: 9/10 (So good, this film has my heart!)

So there’s my review¬†people, only 28 more to go. So have you seen¬†Spider-Man 2¬†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 2, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Month of Superhero Film Reviews: Spider-Man

Howdy ladies and gentlemen from the far regions of the internet and welcome to my¬†Month of Superhero Film Reviews! Today on June 1st we begin 30 days of superhero film madness¬†where I‚Äôll be reviewing of some of the best and worst comic book adapted films. Okay let’s start this thing in style with one of my favourite superhero films of all time, Spider-Man from 2002!

So let’s go back to 2002 when the first live-action Spider-Man film came¬†out from director Sam Raimi, most famous for the Evil Dead film series. This was an ambitious project at the time and had been attempted before but had numerous issues in development before it was eventually crafted and released. Luckily the film was a large success at the box office and critically too, coming just after Bryan Singer’s X-Men in 2000, Spider-Man was the film that really made superhero films big. Indeed¬†X-Men paved the way for the genre, but I believe¬†Spider-Man came along and cemented it.

As for the story we have Peter Parker, a smart teenager with a knack for science and photography who one day gets bitten by a genetically mutated spider and superpowers. At one point he let’s a bad guy escape and this person kills his uncle. Feeling responsible for the death of his uncle, Peter becomes the superhero Spider-Man and defends the city of New York from evil. And along the way Spidey comes across the Green Goblin, a formidable foe who has powers of his own and will make things difficult for Spider-Man and his alter-ego.

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Spider-Man as a film does so many things right, But most importantly it was and still is a film that gets me giddy every time. I love so many aspects of this film from the story to the cast to the quotable dialogue and epic action sequences and soundtrack. All of it is amazing.¬†This film is so hard to talk about purely because I’m just such a massive fan of it. Not only because of the nostalgia factor but also because this was one of the first comic book films to really open my eyes up to the genre and make me interested in future live-action adaptations.

The story is a simple yet effective one. It is about good versus evil, but there is also a love story there and both elements are handled with care. I also like the way the film was directed, you can tell that its Sam Raimi’s film because there are elements of horror to be found in way some of the characters and scenes are handled.

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When it comes to the cast their all pretty good for the most part. Firstly let’s talk about¬†Tobey Maguire¬†as¬†Peter Parker/Spider-Man. At first people were unsure about Maguire in the role and to this day some still don’t like him in the role, but for me I liked his portrayal of the character. Granted there are some Peter Parker/Spider-Man elements I don’t get to see in the film otherwise Maguire puts his heart into the role and really does give us a charismatic performance.¬†Then we have¬†Kirsten Dunst¬†as¬†Mary Jane Watson, now Dunst is often noted as the weak element in this film series and its only now as an adult I can see why. Honestly back when I was a teen I thought Dunst was hotness in this film and she still looks great in this film. As the character of Mary Jane Watson she doesn’t really embody the elements of the character from the comics, however for the story that was told in the film Dunst was alright and had some nice chemistry with Maguire.

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As for Willem Dafoe¬†as¬†Norman Osborn/Green Goblin he was good in that cool yet cheesy way. Dafoe really goes hardcore with the role and seems to be just as crazy as he is in other villain-based roles. He makes for a good Norman Osborn and has some great¬†delivery¬†with his dialogue especially with the dual identity. Now we have¬†James Franco¬†as¬†Harry Osborn, I really liked Franco in this role. Franco gave a nice version of the character that still had his father issues and slight jealously of Peter’s intellect due to his father’s¬†acknowledgement¬†of Peter’s smarts. I liked the screen time that Franco and Dafoe had, their relationship definitely felt legit.

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Then we have¬†Cliff Robertson¬†as¬†Ben Parker.¬†Robertson made for a great Uncle Ben, even though we didn’t get to see him for that long I felt like he had all the right mannerisms of Uncle Ben from the comics so when he died the impact was definitely there. As for¬†Rosemary Harris¬†as¬†May Parker¬†she was lovely, while her take on Aunt May was different, it was still nice to see her concern for Peter and know of his admiration for MJ. And lastly¬†J. K. Simmons¬†as¬†J. Jonah Jameson, he was awesome. If this trilogy got anything right it was the casting of Simmons as Jameson. Simmons is great as the¬†publisher of the¬†Daily Bugle¬†who moans about Spider-Man continuously and is generally a bit of jerk to every one.

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As for presentation it is still pretty badass. Visually the film is great, the CGI is good, the action and fighting scenes are nicely shot, well choreographed and really show of what kind of abilities Spidey has. But the best element of this department is the¬†web-slinging. This was my favourite aspect of the character in the comics and it came to life in an incredible fashion in the film.¬†I get an adrenaline rush from watching these scenes and its exhilarating watching Spidey swing in such an elegant and stylish manner. As for the soundtrack by Danny Elfman it is fantastic. Loads of people have cited the 1989 Batman soundtrack as Elfman’s best work and while I don’t deny its awesomeness I do think Spider-Man‘s soundtrack is incredible too. There are some beautiful themes crafted here which are soft, beautiful, heroic, eerie¬†and creepy too. Elfman really did create some amazing tunes that would continue to be used throughout the trilogy.

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Now of course the film isn’t without its problems. It is 2013 and comic book films have changed a great deal in the last 11 years. Firstly some of the CGI definitely looks dated and this film also has a lot of that early wire work in action scenes that really looks odd and unrealistic at times. Also this film is undeniably cheesy, whether it be the dialogue, story, action or the sort of really comic book-esque vibe, it is there and because of the more sophisticated superhero films of the last few years a lot of this stuff is can be off-putting.

As for how it compares to the comics well it’s a bit half and half. This film seemed to combine the original story from the Amazing and Ultimate comics and mesh them together giving us something familiar yet new for its time. Most of the key elements were intact in this adaptation like:

  • Peter Parker the nerd
  • The death of Uncle Ben
  • The robber that got away
  • Spider-Man wrestling
  • The Spidey suit
  • The personality of Norman Osborn

But then there were things that weren’t completely translated well or just not at all like:

  • Having a genetically mutated spider rather than a radioactive one
  • Peter’s level smartness is never fully explored
  • Peter’s organic webbing as opposed to the mechanical web-shooters
  • Spider-Man’s trademark humour being nerfed in the film
  • The portrayal of Mary Jane Watson being more like Gwen Stacy instead of the comic book version
  • The ugly Green Goblin costume and how stupid it looks when compared to the comics

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In conclusion Spider-Man is starting to show its age these days, but it is still a great superhero film in my eyes. While this may not be everyone’s idea of the perfect live-action version of Spider-Man for me this film did a lot of things right and as an adaptation it was a wonderful effort. This film has probably been lost to time especially due to the appearance of The Amazing Spider-Man but I believe this film is still relevant and if there’s anyone who’s yet to watch it, I would recommend it highly.

Rating: 8.5/10 (This is some good stuff, trust me.)

Well that‚Äôs the first review down, only 29 more to go lol. So have you seen Spider-Man and if so what are your thoughts on it? Drop me a comment and let me know your thoughts people! Swing by tomorrow and I’ll have a new film review for ya, laters!

 
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Posted by on June 1, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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