Good day to you ladies and gentlemen and Merry Christmas! I hope you’re having a great Christmas session, today I’m here to share with you my late thoughts on Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker via my podcast Film Focus.
I actually saw this film the day after it released, but I just got caught up with work and the build up to Christmas that I forgot to post it on here haha. 😛 But yeah I guess it is better later than never right? So on episode 94 of the podcast, I finally get to talk about another the last major release of 2019 that’s been on my radar for a while in the form of The Rise of Skywalker. Now after The Last Jedi came out, the Star Wars fandom has been thrown into chaos with such a crazy divide between those who loved and hated it. So with all that in mind, JJ Abrams and the other filmmakers had a difficult task to create a satisfying conclusion that would satisfy everyone. So is Rise of Skywalker a film good or not? Well, check out this spoiler-free review to find out.
So have you seen The Rise of Skywalker and if so what did you think of it? Was it everything you wanted or were you disappointed or are you somewhere in between? Drop your thoughts in the comments section below and I’ll see ya in the next review, laters! 😀
Howdy ladies and gents, I’m back from the underground to talk about some Star Wars! Yeah, so earlier on today we found out not only that Episode IX will now be called The Rise of Skywalker (An interesting title that I shall discuss later), but we also got a teaser trailer and you know I had to share my thoughts on that. So without further ado, let’s talk about that trailer!
Check out the trailer below:
So my initial impressions were this, “Okay, I am intrigued and dare I say excited to see where this is gonna go.” Now I can’t lie, my love for all things Star Wars has diminished somewhat, not only because of my conflicted feelings about The Last Jedi and the haphazard nature of how this new trilogy has been constructed under Lucasfilm and Disney’s watch but also due to some of the really toxic members of the fandom that make it hard to enjoy anything these days… But at the end of the day, I still love Star Wars and want to see more of it and this teaser seems to suggest we’ll be getting something good.
I feel like there’s an interesting tonal balance between the darker and lighter tone, I feel like this teaser is trying to retain what we got from The Last Jedi but infuse it with more of the adventurous side of things we got with The Force Awakens. There’s a lot to like about this trailer, Luke’s voiceover is great, ooooooo Lando! The sense of scale is still really insane, the choice of lighting is nice, it looks like the action will still be intense with a good balance between practical and digital effects and I am just so glad to FINALLY see Rey, Finn and Poe together as a team as that was what wanted in the last film. I’m also really liking the colour scheme and visual presentation as we get shots of Rey in a desert, Kylo Ren in a forest, some aerial shot of a city surrounded by mountains and that awesome shot of Rey, Finn & Poe staring at the remains of the Death Star… But then you hear that laugh at the end, that distinctive laugh. Good god, it’s my boy Palpatine aka Darth Sidious. But what does it mean? Is he alive? Will be some kind of dark side force ghost thing? Will be in a flashback or in some past hologram? I need answers!
On top of that, the title makes me wonder if JJ and the filmmakers will be retconning a few things or not. The title The Rise of Skywalker implies that a Skywalker will be the focus and as we know, Luke is “dead”, Leia can’t be the one and though Klyo Ren is technically of the Skywalker bloodline, he can’t be redeemed (at least I hope not). So who else is left? Is there any secret Skywalkers hiding out there? Or are we gonna retcon Rey’s heritage to make her a Skywalker to explain her abilities and please some of the fans that weren’t pleased with the answer they got in The Last Jedi? Who knows? Either way, I am very curious.
To conclude very intrigued by The Rise of Skywalker teaser trailer, there is a lot of interesting things going on and a lot to speculate about. I have my hopes and fears, but I want to believe that this will be a satisfactory conclusion to this trilogy.
So have you seen The Rise of Skywalker trailer and if so what did you think of it? Are you hyped, curious or underwhelmed? Let me know in the comments section below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀
Howdy ladies and gents, how’s it going? So yesterday night, after month and months of waiting I finally got to see the last of my most anticipated films of 2017; Star Wars: The Last Jedi. The amount of waiting I’ve had to endure in the lead up to this film’s release has been painful, with all the marketing, rumours and speculation about the story and characters, you almost had to jump off the internet to have a clean viewing experience. Luckily I avoided most spoilers and watched all 7 main series films and Rogue One in chronological order over the last 3 days in preparation which was fun. So with all that out of the way how was the film, well read on and find out!
So the story can be described as the following:
“Having taken her first steps into the Jedi world, Rey joins Luke Skywalker on an adventure with Leia, Finn and Poe that unlocks mysteries of the Force and secrets of the past.”
I don’t want to go into too much detail so I shall be brief. This was a really interesting chapter in the SW saga, one that had a lot more depth, intrigue and surprises than I expected, and I love the film for that. Rian Johnson confidently steps into this universe with a sense conviction, darkness, intelligence and style that is clearly his own if you know of his work and it shakes up this world in really compelling ways. This film definitely channels Empire Strikes Back in terms of the tone and certain story aspects, but it is its own beast. There are drama and emotion on a level I’ve not seen in this series for quite some time, but there’s also a sense of levity to balance things out when necessary. This was also the most thought-provoking film of the series to date, it is very psychological and causes you to think about certain things in a different light. I really enjoyed the themes of the past coming back to haunt you, feeling out of place, good and evil, and the moral and ethical shades of grey. There were also a lot of bold decisions made that I did not see coming which gave me joy, heart-pounding tension and plenty to think about. And finally, I loved how this film expanded the mythology of this universe with history and visual and verbal details that makes you look at what you know it in a different light.
As for the cast they were great, everyone in this film does a great job, whether they were main cast, secondary or just had cameos, everyone had a moment to shine. Firstly there’s Mark Hamill who was just wonderful as Luke Skywalker. This time Luke was crumpy, defeated, yet a knowledgeable and witty old man who had to deal with the mistakes of his past and deal with issues of the present via Rey and Hamill was just as captivating as ever, he had so many scene-stealing moments. Daisy Ridley as Rey was really good, I enjoyed seeing her learn about her powers, see her interact with Luke and search for answers about her past. Ridley’s very charming and engaging and has definitely improved in this role since the first film. Carrie Fisher as General Leia Organa was great, Leia had a big part to play in this film and I loved it. I enjoyed seeing tough yet humorous demeanour and her perseverance in the face of adversity. Fisher had great moments individually and with others and at times I did feel like shedding a tear. Adam Driver as Kylo Ren was great, I’ve been a fan of this character since the previous film and here we get a character really wanting to prove his worth, but also find a sense of purpose and focus and Driver plays this role with flair and subtlety. John Boyega’s return as Finn was great, he still has a great sense of humour but is also has great dramatic moments, he has a lot of good moments and Boyega’s charisma shines through.
Oscar Isaac as Poe Dameron was also impressive, I enjoyed seeing more of him in this film and seeing a different side to his character. Isaac certainly has a commanding presence and stands out whenever possible whether it be for dramatic or humorous purposes. Andy Serkis as Supreme Leader Snoke was good, it was nice to learn more about this guy considering the mystery surrounding him in the previous film. Snoke was sinister and intimidating and Serkis was captivating in the role. Domhnall Gleeson as General Hux was interesting, he had some good moments, also Anthony Daniels as C-3PO was just as fun as ever, Gwendoline Christie returned as Captain Phasma and definitely had a presence and Lupita Nyong’o had a great performance as Maz Kanata. Newcomers Laura Dern and Benicio del Toro do well as Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo and DJ, the former had an interesting role to play and I enjoyed her performance a lot, and the latter was certainly not what I expected but he was a memorable character for sure. But the most memorable of the new characters was Kelly Marie Tran as Rose, from the time she’s introduced she’s smart, decisive and loveable and I really enjoyed her story arc and interaction with Finn.
When it comes to the presentation it was fabulous. Visually the film looked lovely. I paid extra attention to the cinematography and it looked like everything was painstakingly crafted with certain tracking shots, zooms, use of lighting and framing, everything felt like it had a purpose and was done to the highest degree possible. The space battles felt like a mix of The Force Awakens and Rogue One with its own interesting elements mixed in, certain chases sequences looked lovely and the lightsaber moments were wonderfully choreographed in a classic yet unexpected manner. The CGI was very detailed, clean and realistic, while the practical effects continue to impress me with how much these characters, creatures and robots can be make-up, animatronics and puppetry. Also, the film score from John Williams was awesome. The Force Awakens had good music, but wasn’t overly memorable, whereas this film had a score with a much stronger presence which enhanced every scene it was used in. The themes he introduced from the last film stand out even more and some of the new music he creates is wonderfully varied yet consistent with what’s come before.
In the end, The Last Jedi, was a good film, a really good film. It surprised me in many ways, it also met and exceeded my expectations in certain areas and while not everything in the story and the use of certain characters didn’t go the way I would have liked, the film was still thoroughly engaging and entertaining. After looking at some responses to the film online I know this film won’t be for everyone but I say give it a try.
So have you seen The Last Jedi and if so what did you think of it? Let me know in comments section below and I’ll see ya in the next review, laters! 😀
Howdy ladies and gents, how’s it going? So yesterday something of significance happened as we finally got to see the first trailer for Star Wars Episode VIII also known as Star Wars: The Last Jedi. So let’s waste no time and talk about that trailer!
Check out the trailer below:
So my initial impressions were this, “I am intrigued, wasn’t blown away, but so far so good.” Now I’ve seen from some people online that they’ve found the teaser disappointing or underwhelming and to a degree I can understand considering that 1) It’s the next Star Wars film we’re talking about, so people have high expectations and want to see something special. And 2) Some studios have become a little more open to revealing material for their teaser trailers with results varying from a decent amount to too much. With The Last Jedi trailer it did what a proper teaser should; it gave you a vague yet interesting idea of the story and tone, a look at the actors involved and had some cool visuals and music without giving away any spoilers. This trailer was very in line with the first teaser for The Force Awakens where you got glimpses into the film with various scenes of characters, scenery and action scenes, this teaser was pretty similar, but had a little more weight and drama to it considering that it is not only a sequel to The Force Awakens but also has our first story material for Luke Skywalker since Return of the Jedi.
What I liked about this teaser was the tone, it was very dark, very ominous and mysterious with the use of music and visuals. It feels in line with what’s come with the last film, but things feel a little more dire, aggressive and uncertain and I love it! This feels like the First Order are coming back in full force to mess up the New Republic with the space battles, the explosion of Poe’s ship inside that hanger area, the cool shot of Kylo Ren and the quick scene of Captain Phasma and her troops. What’s even more captivating is Rey and seeing her feel the force and being trained by Luke with saber combat and so on. It seems like her training will be extensive, physical and psychological. But I’m also hyped to hear Luke speak, just hearing him say lines like “Breathe.” and “What do you feel?” Was nice, but what was very curious was that final line about the Jedi needing to end. What does that mean? Does he mean he’s giving up being a Jedi himself or is he suggesting that the idea of the Jedi needs to be disbanded or reimagined? Or does it mean Luke’s going dark like some fans have feared? I doubt it’s the last one but its fun to speculate.
In the end I’m very intrigued and encouraged by the first footage of The Last Jedi, it looks like it will be a good time. December is too far away dammit and I need this film now!
So have you seen The Last Jedi trailer and if so what did you think of it? Are you hyped, curious or underwhelmed? Let me know in comments section below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀
Howdy ladies and gents, time for another new film review and today I’m talking about the latest X-Men film in the form of X-Men: Apocalypse. Now I’ve gone on record stating that I wasn’t wowed by the trailers for this film, but have been cautiously optimistic about it and after seeing it last night I’m ready to pass judgement!
So the story goes down like this:
“In this latest X-Men chapter, the ancient being who is said to be the first mutant known as Apocalypse rises after years of slumber of cleanse the Earth of the humans and create a new world for mutants. So it is up to the X-Men to stop Apocalypse from completing his nefarious plan”
The story of X-Men: Apocalypse is one of intrigue, surprise and familiarity. The tone is dark and grim with some very dramatic and emotional stuff, however there is also a good deal of humour and light-heartedness to slightly balance things out. What we have is another world-ending adventure, but it was the small character moments in between and the build up which was the most engaging material for me. What this film did well was to introduce Apocalypse and his history in the world, and introduced us to new and returning X-Men characters in a great way (with some having better appearances than others). Also for long-time X-Men film viewers there’s some awesome throwbacks to previous X-Men films which were so delightfully sprinkled throughout. The issues I had with the story was that it felt a little larger than life when compared to the previous X-Men films which were a little more grounded, certain plot points don’t completely pay off, and even though the X-Men timeline is messed up already, this film doesn’t help make things better either. And with director Bryan Singer at the helm I really love it because he helped craft this film world and has a certain style with his direction which makes me smile, but at the same time some of the issues I have with the way he handles these films haven’t been rectified yet, and makes me wish someone else mix things up (like Matthew Vaughn did with First Class).
As for cast it is a pretty large ensemble and for the most part everyone was great in their roles, though some were definitely short-changed. Firstly James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender kill it once again as Professor X and Magneto. Since First Class both of these characters have had very important and captivating story arcs and that continued into this film. I really enjoyed seeing more of an older Professor X with him teaching and still trying to co-exist with humans, but what was much more interesting was Magneto’s arc as he continued to be one of the most tragic and complex characters in the film series with all the drama and conflict he faced. As for Jennifer Lawrence as Raven/Mystique she was fine, the arc that they gave her in this film felt logical and made me understand her motivations, even though several times she felt a little schizophrenic at times. Also Oscar Isaac as Apocalypse was good but also a little underwhelming, I liked the character motivations and what he represented at first, however he was hard to engage/relate to because he felt so alien/robotic. Evan Peters as Quicksilver was certainly a more fully formed character than before with more development and screen time, and luckily he’s just as delightful as he was in his previous adventure except much better in this latest appearance. Oh and Wolverine’s appearance (it’s not a spoiler since he was technically shown in the last trailer), loved it, was a great sequence.
Nicholas Hoult was good as Beast and the return of Rose Byrne as Moira MacTaggert was welcomed too, and Josh Helman was good and had definitely gotten more settled in his role as William Stryker. And then there’s the new versions of the old characters. Of all of them Sophie Turner fared the best as Jean Grey, he character felt fresh and yet familiar, and Turner brought a lovely energy and presence to the character which felt similar to both the comics and films. Tye Sheridan as Scott Summers/Cyclops was also very good and had a lot more of a presence and charisma than what we’ve seen in the past, and I really liked Jean and Scott’s interaction, felt like they had a good introduction and nice chemistry. Kodi Smit-McPhee did great as Nightcrawler, he was able to capture the spirit of what Alan Cummings brought to the role in X2, but added a whole new level of youthful charisma and humour to the role. And Alexandra Shipp as Storm was decent, but the least interesting of the new X-Men as she felt a bit plain and lacking flair.
And then there were was everyone else. Olivia Munn as Psylocke, well, she was alright I guess. I mean maybe I was expecting too much, but I didn’t get to know much about her and she didn’t do much beyond what was seen in the trailers, that being said Munn handled her action scenes well. Ben Hardy as Angel/Archangel was fine, but he felt very plain and undeveloped, while Lana Condor was good as Jubilee but for all the hype that was made about her being in the film her part was incredibly minor. And Lucas Till returned as Alex Summers/Havok had some really good scenes but was in the film much less than I liked.
When it comes to the presentation it was pretty good. Visually the CGI was good with some good attention to detail with the special powers and crazy large-scale action sequences (shout out to the Quicksilver sequence), but I will admit that some of the fight scenes weren’t that exciting and it didn’t help that several of the action scenes were shown in the trailers. And the film score by John Ottman was great and maybe his best work in the X-Men film series so far, this music was diverse, intense, dramatic and was always relevant with what was happening on-screen.
In conclusion X-Men: Apocalypse is another solid film in the X-Men film series, it was not only better than what I’d expected considering that trailers didn’t wow me, but it also featured some of my favourite moments in any X-Men film so far. However there were a few story and character motivation issues that just prevented this film from being greater.
So have you seen or are you going to watch X-Men: Apocalypse? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to drop them in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀
So the day of reckoning has arrived (at least for us in the UK), Star Wars The Force Awakens has finally been released and I saw it in IMAX yesterday, and excuse the profanity, but it was some good shit. The wait for this film has felt like an eternity but I’ve seen in this new Star Wars film, and while a spoiler-free review seems impossible. I’m going to attempt it anyway. 😀
The plot can be described as the following:
“30 years after the defeat of the Galactic Empire, a new threat rises. The First Order attempts to rule the galaxy and only a ragtag group of Heroes can stop them, along with the help of the Resistance.”
First thing I can say about this story is that it was really good. At first I thought this film would be just a retread of A New Hope, and throughout the film there’s certainly some call backs to that particular film, however as the story progresses it quickly evolves into its own tale with new characters, mythology and set up for even grander adventures in the future. What I loved about this film was its ability to connect with The Original Trilogy, but also feel totally fresh, exciting and unexpected. This film is full of humour, drama, mystery and intrigue, but at the center of it all it has heart. And for all the spectacle and larger-than-life elements, this was a very intimate and personal adventure for several of the characters involved and you could feel the emotion for sure. There’s also a lot of great references to the previous Star Wars films, and while you don’t have to have seen the previous films to understand TFA, you really can’t appreciate all of the subtle references or the dramatic moments involving the older returning cast members.
I have to hand it to J.J. Abrams and his team of writers for being able to pull this film off. This film really felt like Star Wars from a nostalgic standpoint, but it didn’t rely to heavily on it and created a lot of new material especially when it came to some of the humour and dialogue. Some of this material felt odd to be a in a Star Wars film, but it also helped the film feel relatable to modern film audiences. Also this film gets a little dark, sure it’s not the first time in this series, but certain moments were definitely violent and aggressive. Now this film isn’t perfect (although its pretty close), certain characters aren’t utilized to their full potential and certain plot points and mysteries you may be able to predict if you’re hardcore fan who has read the Expanded Universe/Legacy material or have speculated a lot online. But make no mistake, this film feels like the Star Wars you remember and it felt like a satisfactory follow-up to Return of the Jedi.
Oh and the cast, they were great. A lot of these characters come from different backgrounds and this film did a good job of weaving them all together in coherent manner that felt natural. Firstly let me talk about Daisy Ridley and John Boyega as Rey and Finn, man I adore these two. Rey was this smart, cunning and interesting scavenger, while Finn was a defected stormtrooper from the First Order who was brave, extremely funny and emotionally scarred. Both of these characters have great chemistry together, but their separate adventures were also very personal and badass. Adam Driver as Kylo Ren was very badass, this character could have easily been a one-note villain, but there were layers to him, and discovering more about his personality and history as the film progressed was exciting and engaging. Oscar Isaac was great as Poe Dameron, just the definition of cool with a great deal of charisma, humour and confidence, and I have to give a shout out to BB-8 as he was one of the most adorable and humourous aspects of this film.
And then there’s Harrison Ford as Han Solo, I loved him SO much. Ford, while certainly older, he felt like he hadn’t lost a step as Solo. This character was still just as charming, daring and hilarious as ever, however, he’d also aged and his perspective on certain things has changed a great deal, and while he was certainly used as a means to guide the new characters into this franchise, at the same time he had a key role to play and it was handled nicely. Carrie Fisher’s return as General Leia Organa was very nice too, Leia, while similar to the woman were known from the previous films, she’s changed too, she has a lot more responsibilities and it was cool to see a different side to her. Lupita Nyong’o as Maz Kanata was another great new addition as she had such wonderful moments with some of the heroes, and Andy Serkis as Supreme Leader Snoke was quite fascinating, he was imposing, powerful and yet strange and mysterious too. The rest of the cast was either not given enough screen time or weren’t developed enough especially when it came to Domhnall Gleeson as General Hux, Max von Sydow as Lor San Tekka and Gwendoline Christie as Captain Phasma.
When it comes to the presentation, dear god I could nearly explode from the feeling of happiness this film gave me. Visually the film was beyond awesome. Everything from the gorgeous, pulsating space battles to the dirty/aggressive lightsaber duels to the lovely practical effects for the aliens and robots was stunning. What was great about this film was that it looked and sounded just like the previous films, but now with a swifter pace, a different style of cinematography, better use of practical effects and the CGI was clean, sharp and flawlessly executed. Oh and the music by John Williams, it was pretty damn cool. Now I will admit there weren’t any new themes that stuck out to me (like “Duel of the Fates” in the prequels), however the music is a mixture of new and old, but it has the Williams touch, that sense of magic and wonder, fear, intensity and joy that comes from a Star Wars film and it was a joy to hear it.
In conclusion Star Wars: The Force Awakens, to put it simply, the film just made me feel good. There’s a sense of satisfaction that I got after this film ended that I haven’t felt since The Avengers, all I needed this film to be was good and it exceeded my expectations in ways I never thought would happen. With an engaging new story, brilliant performances from the main cast members and stunning production values, Star Wars in back for fans new and old. Now the film does have issues and some fans will not be entirely happy with everything that goes down, but hell I really enjoyed myself with this film and I will probably see it several more times into the new year.
Critic Rating: 8.5/10
Fan Rating: 9/10
So are you going to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens and if so are you hyped or worried? And if you’ve seen the film were you pleased or disappointed? Please be sure to comment below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀
Yo people of the internet, time for the trailer review I’ve been waiting an eternity to watch; the official trailer for Star Wars The Force Awakens. I waited all of yesterday for this trailer but didn’t know when it was specifically coming out, so when it did get released it was like 3am over here in the UK, but it was worth the wait because I loved the trailer and I’m gonna attempt to tell you why in this review.
Check out the trailer below:
I think this may be the best trailer I’ve seen to any film this year. I know that’s an incredibly biased statement but screw it, it’s frigging Star Wars and because of this final trailer I have no doubt in my mind that this film will be awesome. I liked the first teaser, really digged the second, but this trailer just blows the previous two out of the water.
I am honestly a little lost for words, this trailer blew me away. I had hopes and they were met and exceeded. Would I like to have seen more like possibly some footage of my man Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker? Of course I would! And am I still curious to know where Domhnall Gleeson, Andy Serkis and Lupita Nyong’o are also? Totally! But the brilliance of this trailer is in the fact that it gives you so much and yet holds back the finer details. You still don’t know what the story is and there’s still a lot of room for speculation.
There is so much awesomeness in this trailer that’s it’s hard to find a place to start. I’ve seen the trailer around 3 times and yet I feel like even after that talking about this trailer won’t be enough because there is so much to cover. Firstly I will say that the presentation is simply amazing. The dog fights have this new level of energy and intensity not yet seen in the series, X-Wings and Tie Fighters fly, shoot, crash and explode with clarity, beauty and speed, and the classic Millennium Falcon is the thick of it getting chased too. And seeing these different locations like space or that snowy planet or the jungle/water-based planet as the arenas for these crazy battles looks so good. Those visual effects people are really taking Star Wars into the modern era with the cinematography used for these battle sequences.
There are loads of little things to mention like:
Rey is special: This lady feels very similar to Luke Skywalker because of where she begins; she’s in a desert, looking out to the stars and because of a specific event it will trigger her adventure. She seems tenacious, strong and it looks she’ll be the central focus of this film.
Finn, where does his alliance lie?: Finn looks like he grew up believing what he was doing, but has defected and starts a new path in this film. I also love how he goes from being a Stormtrooper to joining Rey to then attempting to fight Klyo in the forest (that scene alone look frigging epic), he’s gonna have one hell of a story arc.
Klyo Ren, the dedicated badass: Klyo is definitely a Darth Vader fanatic, he’s on a mission to complete something that Vader didn’t finish (at least that’s what his dialogue suggests), he’s got a badass posse with his Knights of Ren with him in the rain, he’s someone you don’t want to encounter as demonstrated with his force abilities being used on Poe in a torture scene.
Poe Dameron, more that meets the eye: Besides being a good pilot, he looks like he’ll be pretty important as he has some interaction with Klyo Ren (as mentioned above) but also with Finn which makes me wonder if there’s some history between them whether it is prior to this film or during with Finn converting from the Order to join Poe (that shoulder tap and Finn’s reaction suggests that there may be some allegiance there).
Han Solo is a believer: Out of the original trio, Han shows up the most and seems like he’ll be the guide for Rey and Finn into this world we’ve known for a while now. When Rey asked him about the events of the past and he says that “It’s true, all of it.” It feels like he’ll be giving them the history on what took place in the Original Trilogy. Also when he says “The dark side, the Jedi, they’re real.” That’s a big statement as he was a non-believer many moons back but has definitely changed his opinion on those things. Also I liked seeing him and Chewbacca lowering their hands from their heads, but what was even more interesting was seeing him and Leia hug, I wonder if they’re still together or that the events of this film bring them back into each others lives?
The Millennium Falcon’s warp speed: I know it’s a minor detail, but in the original films we never saw the Falcon while it was in warp. It would always boot up and then blast away into the distance, but here we see the full extent of the speed much like the starship Enterprise in Star Trek (2009).
Oh and that music, bloody hell, hearing those classic themes reworked into this trailer (“Han Solo and the Princess”) being all loud and dramatic over this footage was beautiful. It gave me goosebumps and felt suitably nostalgic. I loved it and I wonder if that’s just cut for the trailer or if it’ll be part of John Williams’ new soundtrack for The Force Awakens? I really hope the new film can sound similar to this because I’ll lose my mind.
I have to hand it to J.J. Abrams for his ability to keep this film secret for so long and continuing his trend of not revealing key details for his films in the marketing process especially when it comes to this trailer. And speaking of Abrams this film definitely has his style over it in terms of the camera work and swifter pace, and it looks like he’s gonna breathe new life into this franchise the same way he did with 2009’s Star Trek (and I loved that film so I can only imagine how good TFA will be).
In conclusion Star Wars: The Force Awakens, I’m beyond excited for this film, I know I’ve probably missed out tons of details but I’m only offering quick thoughts. This is all I’ve wanted out of the films of 2015 and if it is nearly as good as this trailer suggests then it will be the best December film experience I’ve had in a long time. I just want this film now, give it to me! MY BODY IS READY!
So have you seen the trailer for The Force Awakens and if so are you hyped or underwhelmed? Please be sure to comment below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀
Howdy ladies and gents, time for a fresh film review and today I’ll be talking about Ex Machina. This is a film I only found out about around a month ago because of the posters showing at my local cinema, but it was after I saw the trailer and heard Oscar Issac was in the film when my interest got raised. Recently there’s been a lot of praise about this film, is it warranted? Well read on and find out in this condensed review!
The story for this film can be described as the following:
“A young programmer is selected to participate in a breakthrough experiment in artificial intelligence by evaluating the human qualities of a breathtaking female A.I.”
This is a thriller mixed in with science fiction and it is a wonderfully done in a story that is familiar, yet unique, intriguing and unsettling. What I loved was the fact that from the beginning there was something in the air that felt off. There was a creepy atmosphere with great deal of tension and suspense. The film gets you to look at every detail and consider the possibility from the perspective of each of the characters and then it becomes a game to find out who is telling the truth and who is full of shit. As the film progresses and certain aspects come to light things get very dark, disturbing and different very quickly, and while I suspected some of the story elements that came to pass, there were certainly unexpected aspects that I did not see coming which was great. For all its dark elements they are moments of humour and there is one sequence which was one of the best things I have experienced in any film in a while.
When it comes to the cast they are all incredible. Domhnall Gleeson as Caleb is awesome as this young man who comes into interaction with Nathan and Ava and has a life-changing experience getting to know them. Caleb is bright and intelligent, but is also fascinated by Ava and questions what Nathan’s intentions are. Gleeson is an actor I’ve grown to like since his days in Harry Potter and here is so calm, cool and dramatic. Oscar Isaac as Nathan what a great performance. Nathan is a man with ambition, he’s smart, confident and charming, however he is also uncompromising and mysterious. Isaac delivers what could be his best performance to date, he goes from being laid back to funny to intimidating and everything in between and he handles the role with such charisma that he is hard to take your eyes off of him. Alicia Vikander as Ava is fabulous, Ava is the AI created by Nathan and stays within a specific area of his house. She’s super smart, but is also curious about the outside world and gaining human interaction. Vikander is incredible, she walks the line perfectly between being robotic and being human, whether it be the way she talks or walks has just enough humanity to be realistic.
In addition to that the presentation was lovely. Visually the film was beautiful with a good use of colour, great shots of the outdoors and the CGI was very stylish and realistic. And the soundtrack by Ben Salisbury and Geoff Barrow is cool and adds the atmospheric and creepy nature of the film.
In the end Ex Machina is a smart, chilling and well-executed and it is one of my favourite films in recent history to deal with artificial intelligence and how it interacts with humans. I highly recommend this film, the story is great and the performances from the three main cast members is brilliant.
So have you seen Ex Machina and if so what do 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 review yo! 😀
Howdy ladies and gents, time for some pretty breaking news and it surrounds the upcoming X-Men: Apocalypse as we have a new cast member to add to the collection. The following information comes from superherohype:
Apocalypse (that blueish fellow featured in the Days of Future Past post-credits tease), was created by Louise and Walter Simonson. The character made his debut in “X-Factor” #6. The world’s first mutant, En Sabah Nur was born in Egypt around 3,000 BC and used advanced technology to make himself an eternal conquerer, believing whole heartedly in survival of the fittest.
Isaac’s recent credits include the title role in Joel and Ethan Coen’s Inside Llewyn Davis and, set for release on December 31, J.C. Chandor’s A Most Violent Year, wherein Isaac headlines opposite Jessica Chastain.
Confirmed to star James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence and Nicholas Hoult (with more names expected to be confirmed shortl), X-Men: Apocalypse is scripted by Simon Kinberg, Mike Dougherty and Dan Harris. Said to be the conclusion of a trilogy started with X-Men: First Class and continued with X-Men: Days of Future Past, X-Men: Apocalypse is also rumored to feature appearances by a number of familiar characters, including younger versions of Cyclops and Phoenix. You can learn about the actors and actresses said to up for the Scott Summers and Jean Grey roles by clicking here.
Cameras will start rolling on theX-Men: Apocalypse in Montreal beginning April, 2015 for a May 27, 2016 release.
Well I certainly didn’t see this coming, at all. I like all these random surprises coming from upcoming films, it gets the people going! Haha. But yeah Oscar Issac, I like the guy, while I’ve only seen him in Inside Llewyn Davis and The Two Faces of January, that was enough to tell me that he was going to be someone to look out for in the future, especially after he got cast in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Now while he hasn’t been named as En Sabbah Nur (aka Apocalypse), it seems like most people are banking on that character that he’ll be playing, unless there will be other big villains that will join the fray? If he is playing Apocalypse, then cool, good for him. While I’m not sure if he currently has the look of the character, that is irrelevant, there is a lot of time to beef up and get that make-up on him. However if he isn’t Apocalypse, then I have to wonder who will he be? One thing I’m curious about is if Issac can play the role of an antagonist, so far I haven’t seen anything that makes him look sinister or menacing. That being said, those who have never been seen in a particular role before can surprise audiences if they have a good script, the talent and right direction.
Whatever the circumstances are, I’m happy that Oscar Isaac has joined the league of superhero-based films and I can’t wait to see what he’ll bring to this film. So how do you feel about this news? Be sure to leave your comments below yo. 🙂
Howdy ladies and gents, once again I resurface from the underworld to give you a new film review and today I’ll be talking about The Two Faces of January. Now I remember hearing about this film ages ago and really wanted to see it just because Viggo Mortensen was in it. Unfortunately I missed the film upon its initial release and reviews were so-so to negative, but I still wanted to check this film out. Luckily Cineworld put up a repeat viewing this week which allowed me to see the film myself. So how does the film fare? Well read on and find out!
As for the story it goes a little something like this:
“In 1962, the charismatic Chester MacFarland and his alluring younger wife Colette, arrive in Athens by boat via the Corinthian Canal. While sightseeing at the Acropolis they encounter Rydal, a young, Greek-speaking American who is working as a tour guide, scamming tourists on the side. Drawn to Colette’s beauty and impressed by Chester’s wealth and sophistication, Rydal gladly accepts their invitation to dinner. However, all is not as it seems with the MacFarlands, and Chester’s affable exterior hides darker secrets.“
I thought the film had an interesting if somewhat familiar story, the problem was in the execution. If you had just read the premise for the film then it would sound pretty interesting right? and this film does a few things right when it comes to the elements of jealous and deceit and the ever-growing presence of madness as things start to spiral out of control. All that being said, the film was a bit slow and wasted time on small scenes that didn’t need to be there and while the run time for a thriller is probably around this mark, if not longer I do feel like some scenes could have been cut. Towards things start to pick up and get to a point I expected a while beforehand but even after that it feels a little too late.
When it comes to the cast they are pretty good for the most part. So let’s start with Viggo Mortensen as Chester MacFarland. Even when the overall product isn’t all that you had hoped for you can still count on this man to give a good performance and did very well here. Mortensen’s character appears was very suave, cool and sure of himself, at least when things are going his way, but then when his jealously and paranoia get the better of him you can see his true colours as a bit of rude, drunk, corrupt and dangerous individual who is always looking out for number one. Oscar Isaac as Rydal, Issac was also very good, his character while he isn’t a saint, does have morals and is for the most part a good man who wishes to do right by people. But when things get messy Rydal does step up and can be a fairly calculated and aggressive individual and because of his role in this film I feel like he could take on a villain role in the future. And then there’s Kirsten Dunst as Colette MacFarland. Now Kirsten tries her hardest but she just isn’t that engaging as her two other co-stars and her character felt like she was around for the men to fight over.
One thing that I can say that I liked was the soundtrack by Alberto Iglesias. I loved the his score, it was beautiful. It had a good sense of presence, pacing and knew how to create the right mood for each situation especially the moments of action and tension.
in conclusion The Two Faces of January is isn’t bad, but isn’t great either. I really wanted to love this film but the plot feels like it moves a lot slower than it should be and after the film ended I didn’t feel a great deal of satisfaction once it was over. Mortensen and Issac are the saving graces for this film otherwise it would have been a total bore.
So have you seen The Two Faces of January and if so what did you think of it? Be sure to leave your comments below and I’ll see ya on the next film review. Laters! 😀