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REVIEW: Michael Giacchino at 50

Good day to you ladies and gents, how’s it going? Last night I had one of my favourite experiences of 2017 in the form a concert held at the Royal Albert Hall entitled Michael Giacchino at 50.

Image from royalalberthall.com

So what is this event about? Well, essentially it was a concert where you had an orchestra play several pieces of music from the numerous films, TV shows and video games that Giacchino’s score over the years. If you’ve checked out this blog for any amount of time you’ll know I have not only massive love for good film scores, but for Michael Giacchino in particular, so when I heard about this even back in February, I bought my ticket as quickly as possible. And so finally, the time had come yesterday, alas the London Underground was closed by the time I arrived at St Pancras just after 6pm, so I had to use Google Maps to run down to Royal Albert Hall, luckily after taking a few wrong turns and running through a dark park with no lights, I got to the venue with around 30 minutes to spare.

And I’ll say it right now, the concert was frigging awesome! We were introduced to a gentleman with a sousaphone (whose name I cannot recall, unfortunately) who played the birthday song and got the crowd involved. From there we were introduced to Adam Savage, the host for the event and he was wonderfully funny and charismatic, and in between the music, he’d appear in interesting costumes and introduce the special guests too. And speaking of the guests, we got to see several of the directors Giacchino’s worked as well as some actors featured in the films he’s worked on come onstage and share some kind words about Giacchino and his work. There were appearances from Colin Trevorrow, Andrew Stanton, Gareth Edwards, Matt Reeves, Carlton Cuse, Pete Docter, JJ Abrams, Benedict Wong, Raffey Cassidy, and Gonzo too. 😀

So what about the music? Well, it was all delicious! The concert started off perfectly with The Incredibles, taking all of the key themes from film and blending them together to show off the bombastic, sassy, playful and badass music, clearly, the people behind this show knew what the deal was by opening with that Pixar classic. Next up was some music from Medal of Honour, I was never into shooting games but I really felt like I may have missed out on something special as the music had some gorgeous sounds which felt like a mix of Lost and Jurassic Park. Though I don’t recall much from Jupiter Ascending, the music was and still is really intense and wonderful. Jurassic World had some lovely pieces which I had honestly forgotten about, the compositions Giacchino made for that film were so heartfelt and made me almost shed tears. The Marvel suite featured music from the Marvel Studios logo sequence which was great, the awesome sounds of Doctor Strange (mainly “Strange Days Ahead”) and the upbeat and heroic sounds of Spider-Man: Homecoming. The music for Rogue One had a selection of the best material from the middle and final parts of the film which was really special and powerful. And then there was Lost, so glad I watched the first season recently as the piece they used from the end of the first season and it was frigging perfect and made me well up because it was hella beautiful. And so that ended the first half.

In the second half we had some of the key music from Up which was beautifully handled by the orchestra and the string quartet Bond, then there were the humourous sounds of One Man Band and the final piece of Pixar piece was from Ratatouille. From here my memory gets a little hazy so excuse any mistakes I make if you attended and have the programme. There was also a haunting piece from Cloverfield I think before going on to do the sounds from War for the Planet of the Apes which was really dramatic and cool. Next up was the really beautiful sounds of John Carter, I’d honestly had forgotten about that film and hearing that music really brought back some memories of certain scenes I remembered from 2012. Oh, and the sounds from Tomorrowland was quite nice having a hopeful and majestic sound. And then we had the Star Trek suite which had the sounds of the 2009 film, Into Darkness and Beyond which was easily a highlight for me as it is some of my favourite material in any film ever. Then we had Gonzo come along and had some fun with the audience and then did a bit of a duet with Giacchino on “I’m Going To Go Back There Someday” from The Muppets Movie. And the final music was from Super 8 played with some archive footage of Giacchino’s childhood films he made with his friends which were perfect. But it wasn’t over, after a standing ovation we had our first encore was in the form of Speed Racer,  and then the next encore was a preview of Coco which was so playful and catchy and the final encore was from Alias.

Musical highlights:

  • The Incredibles
  • Jurassic World
  • The Marvel Suite
  • Lost
  • John Carter
  • Star Trek Suite
  • Coco

Overall Michael Giacchino at 50 was a fabulous session and I was glad I was able to attend, there was a lot of laughs and comedy, and insightful and heartfelt moments from Giacchino, his home movies and the kind words from his friends/work colleagues, and of course the work put in from conductor Ludwig Wicki, the Cinematic Sinfonia and the English Chamber Choir was nothing short of amazing as they brought Giacchino’s music to life in such a special way.

 
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Posted by on October 21, 2017 in Films, Media, Music

 

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PODCAST: Film Focus Episode 7 – Anticipation vs Payoff in Film

Howdy people of the internet, as some of you may have seen, not too long ago I started a film podcast entitled Film Focus! This week’s episode is a good few days late for a various reasons, but let’s just say I wanted to wait til Friday when I was meant to go to the cinema, but then I had to go to the hospital, so I’m only getting my stuff uploaded today. 😛

Anyway here’s the seventh episode:

As you can see from the title, this week’s top of conversation is on the anticipation of films versus the payoff, and I get into the pros and cons of each and also give my own accounts of experiencing both. This was a subject matter that I’ve wanted to talk about for a while and while it is a little subjective, I hope that it at least gets people thinking and talking about it.

As I said before in each episode I’ll cover a different topic and since I don’t have much in the way of listeners or promotion, I’m here to spread the word about my podcast. 🙂

You can find my main site on Soundcloud here: https://soundcloud.com/film_focus

Or if you’re on iTunes subscribe and rate me on there: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/film-focus/id1114233892?mt=2

So if you have some spare time on your hands and would like to listen to the ramblings of a passionate/strange man then please check it out, and share it with your friends if you can. Also you have any feedback or if you’d be interested in joining on future episodes be sure to let me know, until next time, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on June 25, 2016 in Films, Media

 

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QUICK REVIEW: Star Wars: The Force Awakens Official Teaser #2

Howdy people of the internet and welcome to a new trailer review! I was going to review the Terminator Genisys trailer at some point soon since the new trailer dropped, but since the second teaser trailer for the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens. dropped online today I just had to talk about that instead.

Here’s the trailer:

So my thoughts after seeing this trailer? It sounds something like this: “Why is December so far away? I want this film now!”

With all the big films coming up this summer like Avengers 2, Jurassic World, Terminator 5, Mission: Impossible 5, Ant-Man and Fantastic Four just to name a few, it is easy to forget that a little old franchise by the name of Star Wars is getting the 7th entry in that film series since the last film in 2005. The hype for the first teaser nearly broke the internet back in December and that was only 90 seconds, but here we get more, we get more scenes of characters, action and spectacle and it looks GORGEOUS! I know that it is just a preview of what is coming up and the film could still be bad, however, with footage like this it is hard for me to feel anything but joy. It looks like J.J. Abrams and the people behind this film has everything under control.

Since there’s so much going on in this teaser trailer, like the last review I’m just going to talk about the main things I took away from this trailer. No bare in mind I’m no Star Wars boffin so there will be things that go over my head or I won’t be able to discuss in nerdy fashion, so don’t kill me.

Fallen Star Destroyer

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Having this as the opening scene is perfect. For fans of the Original Trilogy this is a scene that is nostalgia as I believe we’re on that sandy planet that looks like Tatooine again (it is apparently called Jakku) and we see a speeder driving by in the background, and as the camera pans to the right we see the remains of a HUGE old star destroyer. Just that moment put me in a state of awe. That ship was insanely big and it really establishes the scale and scope of this new film in contrast to the original films and to some degree even the prequels. I just like how the remains from the old films still exist here in an old, decayed, but visually distinctive manner, and the fact that the old Star Wars music is playing in background with it, that just hits home in such a lovely way.

That Old Vader Helmet

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Bloody hell, this was another really chilling and nostalgic element. Seeing that helmet of Darth Vader was both cool and super creepy. I love Vader and I was gutted when he died in Return of the Jedi, but the man did die a hero and was burnt in fire. But seeing is old, deformed/melted helmet, it was so creepy and horror-like to me. I can’t look at it too much, it just creeps me out. I assume that it is look possibly looking at the helmet, unless it is someone else, if so who?

New Kids In Danger

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We get to see a few new looks at John Boyega and Daisy Ridley individually at different points, but this trailer establishes that they are not only in the same location but how they also have to work together too. And this shot is awesome, seeing them running for their lives from the destruction behind them. And this shot is even better before BB8 is along for the ride too.

Action, Spectacle & Chaos!

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The Star Wars films have always been known for their incredible attention to detail when it came to visual effects, cinematography and action sequences, and looks like this film will take what we’ve come to expect and improve upon that foundation tenfold with the use of improved CGI and modern styles of cinematography. The action in this film looks off the hook, the amount of madness going on whether it is X-Wings flying above water on a Earth-looking planet or Tie Fighters chasing down the Millennium Falcon through the remains of huge ship or some crazy battle in a hangar bay with a Tie Fighter shooting at Stormtroopers, it all looks SO clean, detailed and shiny and I want a piece of it!

Stormtroopers & Crazy Cool Sith Man

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Firstly I’m really liking the new look of Stormtroopers, they look new, but familiar. I like how there are still a good number of them lurking around after all these years and I can’t wait to see them in action/ They look cool standing around and getting blown away, but I want to see more from them and understand just how John Boyega fits into his role as one of them. Oh and that dude in the dark hood from the first trailer, we can see his face! Well, sort of. I know the guy has a name but I forget what it is. Anyways, he wears a cool-looking mask and looks like he’s going to be throwing down in this film swinging his lightsabers and using the force too, I just want to know how much of a force he’ll be and who he’ll run into over the course of the film.

Chewie & Han!

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And after that incredible short chase sequence with the Millennium Falcon, the icing on the cake was clearly last scene, seeing Harrison Ford back as Han Solo alongside Chewbacca with him saying “Chewie, we’re home.” That was just perfect and sort works both as return for the characters in the film but also for us fans that have been waiting to see them in this universe again after so many years. On and I just want to highlight how good Ford looks, sure he’s old for sure, but the make up and costume people have done well to make him look like a more seasoned version of Solo, I just hope he can still move a fair amount though.

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In conclusion the second teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens is frigging amazing. It feels like the perfect blend of old and new, again it is only a teaser, there isn’t much information on the story or characters, but what we do see is hella cool and exciting. It is only the second trailer and I’m already feeling like this film will be the amazing experience I hope it will be. There is so much to like and again, I can’t wait for December to come, MY BODY IS READY! 😀

So how do you feel about the second teaser for Star Wars: The Force Awakens? Are you hyped more or less than before or were you unimpressed? I would love to hear your thoughts, please be sure to drop them in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on April 16, 2015 in Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Rewatching Films At The Cinema

Howdy ladies and gents of the internet, how are you all doing today? I just wanted to do a blog post on something that I like to do from time to time which is rewatching films in the cinema.

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There is something wonderful, fun and kind magical about watching a film on a projector in room full of other people who are sharing the same/different emotional responses. Most big film fans are all about this kind of thing. If you like a film a lot, then you’ll want to check it out again right? Multiple viewings of films in the cinema is something that people do for many reasons whether it is to show support for their favourite films or for bragging purposes or just because they’re obsessed.

I love getting the chance to a film more than once in the cinema, however it wasn’t always like that for me.

As a child to my mid/late teens, going to the cinema used to be reserved for special events like birthdays, major film releases or family outings (going with my dad and sister). So unless my dad was taking me or I was out with my friends, then the cinema was not a very regular thing. But all that changed in 2008. Now before that year I had watched a few films more than once in the cinema, but I never had the money or desire to see any of them more than twice… But then May of 2008 came around and I saw Iron Man, and honestly that film changed my world. Now I had seen many comic book films, but that film was the first film that seemed like a comic book come to life, but with a great sense of realism, like it could exist in our world. It was so much fun and that was the main factor that grabbed me. So I watched it two more times which made Iron Man the first film I saw three times. It was totally bizarre to me to be sitting in the cinema watched the film again for the third time, but that’s how obsessed I was with the film.

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Then after 2008 I ended up watching a good few films more than once on numerous occasions. In 2009 I ended up watching the J.J. Abrams Star Trek three times as well, that film really left impression on me, as a person who grew up seeing the different Star Trek incarnations on TV and seeing it become a more action-oriented sci-fi adventure, it was a surprise, a bloody delightful surprise. The following year was the major turning point for me as watching films started to become an addiction. The brilliant Toy Story 3 came out in the summer of 2010, and it made me shed manly time each time that I saw it during the final scene. I didn’t think I would cry the third time, but somehow that film was still able to get the better of me. But even more hardcore was my viewing experience came from watching Inception. Christopher Nolan was a director I had come to respect from his work on Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and Memento, so I was hyped for Inception, but the end result was so much more. The film had action, thriller and sci-fi elements all in one place with lovely execution and an amazing soundtrack. The film captured my soul and I watched it again, THREE MORE TIMES. People thought me insane for watching the film that many times, however, I loved the film that much I just had to see it again (that it took me three times to fully understand the film lol).

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From there I took things one step beyond. From 2011-2013 I ended up seeing a lot of films on three occasions Rise of the Planet of the Apes, The Dark Knight Rises (that may have been four times) and Man of Steel (though that was accidental), and in 2012 I saw The Avengers four times (much love for Marvel Studios as you may be able to tell). But my biggest repeat viewing comes from 2011 when I saw Thor, FIVE TIMES! Now that may seem quite absurd considering that it is one of the lesser liked films of the MCU and because there are better films that I’ve listed beforehand, however, I do love Thor, but seeing it in the cinema that many times was accidental. I saw it with my friends, then once again with my sister, then with another friend, then with my family and then finally with my uncle. It was just a case of going with the flow which resulted in a lot of time with the god of thunder, but it was hella fun so I’m not complaining.

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So why did I make this blog post? Well I just wanted to share with you some of my crazier cinematic adventures and show you how much I love going to the cinema. Now as you may have noticed a lot of those films happen to be superhero-based and that’s mainly due to the fact that they’ve proven to be the most entertaining and rewarding experiences for me. That and films of the sci-fi genre too. I can easily say that without my Cineworld Unlimited Card I would not have seen as many films as I have over the last six years. Getting to see good films in the cinema more than once is a good feeling and I’m looking forward to 2015’s future films like Avengers 2, Star Wars, Spectre and Mad Max 4 to name a few.

So do you like to rewatch films in the cinema and if so what’s the most amount of times you’ve seen a film in the cinema? Please let me know in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next blog post, laters! 🙂

 
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Posted by on February 26, 2015 in Films, Life, Media

 

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Star Trek 3 to Release on July 8, 2016 with Justin Lin to Direct!

Howdy all you jolly people of the internet, time for some new film news and today I’m going to talk about the recent happenings surrounding the next Star Trek film. The following information comes from superherohype:

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Paramount has, according to Deadline, set four-time The Fast and the Furious franchise helmer Justin Lin to direct the upcoming Star Trek 3 (or 13 depending on your point of view). The new arrives nearly three weeks after word first broke that Roberto Orci would not be taking the director’s chair.

Lin’s credits also include his indie debut Better Luck Tomorrow (which he retconned into a The Fast and the Furious prequel of sorts), the Naval drama Annapolis and several key episodes of Dan Harmon’s “Community”. He’ll also be directing the first two episode of “True Detective” season two.

And then there’s this follow-up article also from superherohype:

Following word yesterday that four-time The Fast and the Furious franchise helmer Justin Lin is set to direct the upcoming Star Trek 3 (or 13 depending on your point of view), Paramount Pictures has officially announced a release date of July 8, 2016. 2016, as Trekkies are well aware, marks the 50th anniversary of Gene Roddenberry’s enduring sci-fi franchise.

So we finally have a director and release date for the next Star Trek film, and I, am okay with this. Now firstly let’s talk about the director, Mr. Justin Lin. This guy has good credits, besides breathing life back into the Fast and Furious series, this man as also handled one of my favourite shows, Community and will be working on True Detective as well. The man has talent and he definitely knows his action sequences and can get the adrenaline pumping in the F&F films, now obviously that doesn’t necessarily translate into the Star Trek series, but I can tell that this man will at least give us one hell of a ride when it comes to the action and spectacle. As for the release date, 2016, I’m down with it, looks like I can add another film to my watch list of most anticipated films of that year.

Now I’m a big fan of the recent Star Trek films, the first one in 2009 was one of my favourite films of that year and it was a create reinvention of a then dying franchise and the sequel, Into Darkness was a pretty decent follow-up which at the time I liked very much. Now both of these films have had their fair share of criticism, the first film had people complaining about the heavy use of action, questionable portrayals of original TV characters, the use of a new timeline to justify changing the events of the original cannon and the of course, the lens flares. The sequel also suffered from some of the issues from the first, but also had complaints about the bickering between Spock and Uhura, the lack of advancement in story and characters between the first and second film, the 4-year gap between films, the unnecessary secrecy of the use of the villain Khan, the use of Khan in general and all of the parrells to Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan. I like this new series of films, but I can honestly say that my love for Into Darkness has waned a lot since last year, whereas the first film I still love. I am interested in seeing a fresh set of eyes handling this film series, I just hope that they balance between story, characters and action is done correctly.

 
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Posted by on December 23, 2014 in Films, Media

 

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The Star Wars: The Force Awakens Teaser Trailer: I LOVE IT!

Good day to you people of the internet and welcome to a very special blog post, today is one of the most important days for me in recent times as a fan of film, as it is, on this day, that we finally get to see the first trailer for the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Now two other teaser trailers dropped this week, the interesting but underwhelming Jurassic World and the bizarre and unpleasant Pan, both haven’t really gotten me that hyped. So with Star Wars: Episode VII dropping at the end of the working week, I wanted to be impressed, and luckily, I was not left disappointed, AT ALL.

Here’s the trailer:

After watching this trailer, all I can say is, “I’m sold. Give me.”

It is hard to describe the crazy emotions that are flying around in my heart and soul at this point in time. For so long I have wanted to see just a glimpse of this film in action and damn, I was not expecting to see what I saw. Sure, none of the classic characters were around and the people that were shown wasn’t shown to a great deal, we didn’t get any idea of what the story was about and it was like a short collection of clips put together into a short montage, but hell, it was one hell of a montage!

We got creepy-sounding narration, storm troopers, some Sith-looking dude carrying a crazy light saber, there are X-Wings and TIE fighters and the frigging Millennium Falcon! REJOICE! It is hard to describe but this teaser, for a use of cruder words, is making me so wet for this film right now. Haha. I told you it was crude!

But seriously this trailer literally left me in a state of awe, happiness and mystery.

So now I’m going to talk about the top 6 things I took away from this trailer.

1. John Boyega… As a Stormtrooper?

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This is a striking moment in this trailer and it does make you question a few things like: is this a disguise? Is he really a stormtrooper and if so when did they become black? Is he on the run or in hiding and if so, who is he trying to escape? Loads of questions, and so many possibilities for speculation!

2. The Presentation

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One thing that the Star Wars series has never skipped on was the presentation especially on the visual side of things and this film looks to possibly outdo every film that has come out before it. What I really appreciated about the film was its use of locations, practical-looking effects (I can not be sure on some of those things at the moment) and this sort of film filter and grittiness that felt like it was straight out of the Original Trilogy but with a new coat of paint. I’m not sure if it was just me, but the way certain things looked like the cockpit of the X-Wing, that weird rolling droid, the girl on the speeder, it looked like the old films but done with today’s style of cinematography when it comes to speed, lighting and camera shots. From only a few seconds of footage I can already feel like this film has found that right blend between today’s visual effects and paying homage to the older films.

3. That Lightsaber, Man!

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Even though that mysterious figure with the cloak in the woods is definitely worth talking about, I’m more interested in the weapon in his hands. I have seen a great number of lightsabers in my life, but this, this just takes this to a whole new level of interesting. Like what the hell? Just when you think you’ve seen in all, something new and unexpected comes out of the woodwork and you’re like “Damn.” But it is in a good way. I like the design of this laser sword and from its colour we can all assume is owned by a Sith right? I mean who else could it be?

4. Other Cool Tidbits

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That voice over used in this trailer, so cool, sinister and badass, and it comes from none other than the beautiful Andy Serkis, well at least that’s what Superhero Feed’s tweet says. Some people reckon its Benedict Cumberbatch, but heck until its confirmed, its just assumptions at this point. Then there’s all this desert, is all Tatooine ir are there other sandy locations which we’ll be travelling to? Also that quick shots of Oscar Issac in the cockpit of the X-Wing and the side shot of the X-Wings flying above water with the mountains in the background, so nice! Also what’s the deal with that droid? It has the head of R2-D2, but its body is super round and rolls along at quite a speed.

5. The Millennium Falcon!

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And then there’s the final scene in the trailer, the moment that pretty much stopped my heart. That final tracking shot with the Millennium Falcon flying through the air just before engaging TIE fighters in battle, is FRIGGING AWESOME! It is just the way this ship flies in this incredible tracking shot with such velocity and force, it looks and feels kick ass and I love it. And if it is Han still driving that thing, that frigging hell that old man still has skills!

6. It Teased & Left You Wanting More

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I feel like this trailer will get a lot of hate from certain fanboys for not giving any story details, not showing off classic characters like Luke, Han, Leia, Chewie, Yoda, etc. And probably showcasing a teaser trailer that is incredibly short when compared to some of the previous ones we’ve gotten over the last month or so. I think some people will not even like the new lightsaber design. I feel like this trailer did just about enough to give you an idea of what to expect, but still be very illusive and coy about the material to come and it was executed wonderfully, similar to what happened with J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek, that teaser was baring anything, however it teased and gave you a rough idea of what expect.

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Conclusion

In the end the teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens is awesome, period. It gives you a rush of nostalgia and new things to come in just under 90 seconds and leaves you wanting more, but in a good way and that is hard to pull off. I was already hyped fort his film, now I’m off the hype radar, I’m on another level of hype. I want this film now. Now messing around J.J., Lucasfilm and the people at Disney, give it to me now. I’m frigging ready!

So how do you feel about the teaser for Star Wars: The Force Awakens? Does it get you hyped up for the next saga in the Star wars franchise or were you underwhelmed? Also as a fan of the series how did you feel during and after the trailer? Was your nostalgia radar on a high, were you fearing you’d experienced another flash of the prequel films? I’d love to hear your thoughts, please be sure to drop them in the comments below, thanks! 😀

 
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Posted by on November 28, 2014 in Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Star Trek Into Darkness Review

It’s 2013 and we now have Star Trek Into Darkness, a film I’ve waited 4 long years to see. After the success of 2009’s Star Trek I knew that a sequel was coming. This new film looks bigger and darker than before, plus it has Benedict Cumberbatch as the villain, how could the film fail right? So does this film succeed in being awesome or does fall short of the previous film’s quality? Read on and find out!

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So the story for this film is as follows:

“After the crew of the Enterprise find an unstoppable force of terror from within their own organization, Captain Kirk leads a manhunt to a war-zone world to capture a one man weapon of mass destruction.”

I really liked the story in this film, it was basically an epic game of cat and mouse between the members of the Enterprise and John Harrison. It was crafted in a lovely way with a great deal drama, danger, mystery and sacrifice. The story in this film takes place not to long after the last film and has some great connections to not only the last Star Trek film but other films in the series and the TV show. There was some great developments for the returning characters as well as the new ones who make their mark in this film. The pacing was good and at not point did it feel like the plot was dragging though at first as good as the story was it didn’t get really good until John Harrison came to the forefront of the story.

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While the story is great, it is the cast that brings these characters to life and makes you care about the events that’s taking place around them. So let’s start with the returning cast starting with Chris Pine as James T. Kirk. I loved Pine as Kirk in the last film, his new interpretation on the character and the transition into the on from the original TV show was great and he continues his good acting in this new film. Here Kirk has a lot more of an emotional story arc and it really tests him as not only a person but as a leader of his crew. And then there’s Zachary Quinto as Spock was simply fabulous! I thought he was incredible in the last film especially with his more emotional interpretation of the character and in this film it is taken to new heights, Quinto was made for this role and really has some great moments verbally and physically too. Also I like how the relationship between Kirk and Spock was still at the forefront of the film and was developed even more than before, Pine and Quinto still have incredibly good chemistry.

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As for the rest of the Enterprise crew their still all on top form. Karl Urban as Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy is still funny, enjoyable and has good screen time with Kirk. Zoe Saldana is still hot and efficient as Nyota Uhura and Simon Pegg is still awesome and hilarious as Montgomery “Scotty” Scott too. Also John Cho and Anton Yelchin are still cool as Hikaru Sulu and Pavel Chekov. Even Bruce Greenwood as does great returning once again as Christopher Pike.

As for the newcomers, Alice Eve and Peter Weller add some interesting elements to the story as Carol Wallace and Starfleet Admiral Alexander Marcus.

But the standout performance has to be from Benedict Cumberbatch as John Harrison, HE WAS A BEAST! That is the best way to describe him really. I loved his performance in this film, Harrison plays this former agent of Starfleet who’s now got a beef with them and wants to take down th organization. There is a lot of mystery surrounding his character and the less you know the better really because as the mystery unfolds you get to discover so much and it’ll be totally surprising. Cumberbatch is insanely badass in this film delivering lines and fighting people with intensity, fear and tenacity. Cumberbatch definitely sold the film for me, I thought he was a truly incredible nemesis for the Enterprise crew and he definitely made up for Eric Bana’s Nero in the last film.

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star-trek-into-darkness06He’s such a badass, only badass people smash through glass like that.

When it comes to the presentation of Star Trek Into Darkness I would honestly say that it is pretty much on par with the 2009. Industrial Light & Magic still know how to make some damn good-looking CGI, there are some great scenes and sequences crafted whether they be on Earth, an alien planet or in space, wherever it is it looks incredible. There some truly epic and larger-than-life spectacles to take in from space battles to seeing the Enterprise in warp drive, it’s just awesome stuff! As for the soundtrack, Michael Giacchino returns as composer and he delivers some truly awesome music while retaining some of the themes from the previous film. There is a music for every scenario and it amplifies the film but ten times, Giacchino still knows how to craft music that is epic, godly, but also soft and emotional too.

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In conclusion Star Trek Into Darkness is a cracking sequel to the 2009 film which not only advances the story and characters from the before but presents much bigger challenges and threats that make the film so much more epic. While there are some elements of the 2009 film I like better, I can easily say that Star Trek Into Darkness is my favourite film of 2013. Go out and watch it now. That’s an order! 😀

Rating: 9/10 (Totally worth your time!)

So what did you think of Star Trek Into Darkness? Did you love, think it was alright or did you hate it? Whatever your thoughts are drop me comment and let me know! Until the next review later on people! 😀

 
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Posted by on May 15, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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My Beastly Star Trek (2009) Review

Oh yes! Now this is a film I have wanted to review for quite some time but I really wanted to find the right time to do it, and with Star Trek Into Darkness pretty much coming out today it’s about time I reviewed this film. Ever since I saw it in the cinema I fell in love with it and it quickly became one of my favourite films ever, so without further ado I give you my review of Star Trek (aka Star Trek XI). By the way it’s a bit of a long one so please try to endure it haha.

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So the premise for this film is as follows:

“The brash James T. Kirk tries to live up to his father’s legacy with Mr. Spock keeping him in check as a vengeful, time-traveling Romulan creates black holes to destroy the Federation one planet at a time.”

I loved the story in this film, it is exciting, entertaining and heartfelt too. We basically get to see the genesis of the members of the USS Enterprise as they come from their different backgrounds and converge and then come together as a crew. But at the center of the film is the relationship between Kirk and Spock, we see how they have very different upbringings and how it shapes them into the men that they are. They’re polar opposites and at first they really don’t get on because one likes to run before he acts whereas the other thinks before he moves. And it is truly beautiful to see these characters come rely on each other and become the partners that we know from the old 60s TV show. The plot of the film is pretty streamlined when compared to the 60s show, it is also much more action-oriented (that is apparent from the beginning) and there isn’t as much of that techno babble and over scientific stuff that the show was known for, however this was probably done to appeal to new audiences. Some veterans of the series may not like the changes done to the old formula and the story but for me it works in an incredibly fun, adventures and emotional way.

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But what is a good story without a good cast? Thankfully the cast in this film are all wonderful at bringing these classic characters to life in a brand new way while feeling familiar at the same time.

Let’s start with Chris Pine as James T. Kirk. Pine gives a very different take on the character as this young, reckless, yet skilled individual who could be much more but chooses to live a simple life until he enlists in Starfleet. After that he goes into space, butts heads with Spock and eventually becomes the character we remember from William Shatner. Chris Pine makes a great Kirk, he’s incredibly likeable, relatable and funny and makes for a great opposite to Spock. And speaking of him let’s move onto Zachary Quinto as Spock. Here we have a version of Spock that while he has all the mannerisms from the old show he has to deal with his dual heritage as half Vulcan and half human. He’s very smart, logical and is a great opposite for Kirk as they bicker and fight. Let me just say that Quinto was MADE to play this role, he’s so stern, logical and has a dry sense of humor. He knocked it out of the park with this role.

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As for the rest of the crew they are all on point. I thought Karl Urban made a great Dr. Leonard “Bones” McCoy, and Zoe Saldana Nyota Uhura was incredibly beautiful and engaging. A special mention needs to be given for Simon Pegg as Montgomery “Scotty” Scott, he was incredible. While his character was pretty much there for humour purposes I loved what Simon Pegg did with the role and he was funny as hell! Then there’s John Cho and Anton Yelchin were awesome, dynamic and humourous as Hikaru Sulu  and Pavel Chekov respectively. Also Bruce Greenwood as Capt. Christopher Pike was wonderful. And Leonard Nimoy’s appearance as old Spock is great and really connects this new film to the original continuity. I guess the only weak link in this chain is Eric Bana as Nero, his villain role is only used as a plot device and he really isn’t as fleshed out as the rest of the cast. However he gets props for the best line in the film: “FIRE EVERYTHING!” Totally badass.

Star Trek (2008) Directed by: J.J. Abrams

When it comes to the presentation of Star Trek it is just one a high level of awesomeness. The film just looks and sounds so good!

Visually the film is incredible, Industrial Light & Magic do a magnificent job of creating these beautiful, highly detailed scenes of space, different planets and the spacecrafts. The CGI is just beautiful and really shines in scenes of massive spectacles like the Romulan attack on the USS Kelvin or the skydiving sequence with Kirk and Sulu or when Kirk is marooned on the ice planet and gets chased by giant monsters. I also like the camera work in the film too, there is some dynamic angles used and there are a few zoom shots and quick camera movements that just make the pace so much swifter than previous Star Trek films. And obviously we can’t talk about Star Trek without highlighting the now-infamous lens flare in the film, at first I never really noticed it until my uncle pointed out to me and after that it couldn’t be unseen. While it does get used to extreme a few scenes to be honest I like it, for some reason it adds some cool lighting effects to the shots its used in and it doesn’t bother as much as everyone else.

Star Trek (2008) Directed by: J.J. Abrams

And then of course there’s the soundtrack by Michael Giacchino and to say that I love it would be an understatement. It honestly sounds INCREDIBLE! Ever since I saw this film in the cinema the soundtrack was one of the main things I remembered after I saw the film. Giacchino is absolutely amazing and really brings the film to life with his score, the tracks are epic, impactful, soft, emotional and all-round good stuff. The song “Enterprising Young Men” is amazing and I get insanely kiddy whenever I hear it, I get goosebumps, that’s how incredible it is. The sound effects for this film is also very good with some returning from the old TV show and there’s smart uses of sound or lack of it that make the film feel incredibly atmospheric.

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Now I remember before this film came out there was a lot of talk and building hype, though at first I wasn’t really interested. I remember when my uncle showed me the first teaser trailer back in 2008 and I thought the concept of a new Star Trek film would be interesting but I wasn’t overly fussed. It wasn’t until the first full trailer came out in the later part of that year where I was like, “Okay now this is a film I have to watch!” Then the film came out and I think the overall response pretty positive from both casual audiences and the fans and it made a lot of money at the box office and it also brought Star Trek back into the mainstream media. Because let’s face it before this reboot Star Trek had been dead in the world of cinema since 2002 and the franchise was just exclusive to the Trekkies who really cared for it. But this film really put Star Trek back on the map because its more action-oriented approach to the franchise which I think the series really needed.

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In conclusion Star Trek is a great re-imagining of the old television show for a new generation. The film is full of action and sci-fi goodness, it also has a solid story, a brilliant cast, spectacular special effects and a beautiful soundtrack to boot. While there was a great deal of things that were changed/reworked in translating the 60s TV show into this live-action reboot, I still say there’s enough of the old for fans to appreciate and I highly recommend this film not only to fans, but to those who aren’t aware of Star Trek or those who have never liked it beforehand. I with the foundations put in place with this film I absolutely can’t wait for the sequel; Star Trek Into Darkness in May, it should be one hell of a sequel!

Rating: A Solid 9/10 (Seal of Approval!)

Well that’s been my review ladies and gents, hopefully you’ve found it informative and drop me comment and let me know your thoughts on the film. This review was meant to be out months ago but I never got around to finishing it now haha. Look out for my Star Trek Into Darkness review in the next few days! By the way don’t forget to follow the blog for more juicy reviews yo! Later peeps! 😀

 
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Posted by on May 9, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Star Trek Into Darkness Super Bowl Trailer Review

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Okay here we go with the second of my Super Bowl TV spot reviews and this one is for Star Trek Into Darkness. As with Iron Man 3 this is one of my most anticipated films of 2013 and I like most people was hyped to see what the deal would be with the Super Bowl tv spot. Here is the video below:

This was the first of the TV spots that I watched and while it was pretty good, I can’t say that I was overly fussed about it. Don’t get me wrong there were a few nice scenes but in truth when compared to the first trailer there isn’t much new or different to talk about. So what did we see in this TV spot? Well there’s a few more shots of Earth, more shots of Kirk and Spock, more Benedict Cumberbatch, Spock and Uhura kissing and epic spectacles. My favourite part of the trailer was when Kirk was interrogating John Harrison and John says “I’m better.” And Kirk’s like “At What?”, to which John replies “Everything.” Such a badass comment and it totally fits in with Benedict Cumberbatch’s persona. Then of course there’s the whole ship falling in the ocean thing that was in the first trailer, but in this TV spot we get to see just how fall its fallen. It seems to have started losing altitude from above the Earth’s atmosphere and then started plummeting to our planet. Now many have speculated that it is the Enterprise and I would be inclined to agree with them. The only other decent bit is towards the end when there is a montage of clips with just the echoing sounds of the Enterprise ship beeping in the background, that was cool.

Overall it was a decent TV spot and possibly better than the one for Iron Man 3, but only by a little bit. It’s good that they haven’t revealed too much for this film so yeah I am happy they haven’t shown any crucial scenes yet. So what did you think of the Star Trek Into Darkness Super Bowl trailer? Whatever your thoughts leave them below! 😀

 
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Posted by on February 4, 2013 in Films, Media, Reviews

 

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J.J. Abrams Will Still Produce a Third Star Trek Film

Okay more news about J.J. Abrams, but this time it revolves around his involvement with future Star Trek films. The following story comes from superherohype:

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“After yesterday’s surprise announcement that J.J. Abrams will be franchise-hopping from Star Trek to Star Wars, fans have been curious about what that means for the future of the U.S.S. Enterprise and her crew. Today, Paramount Pictures tells The LA Times that Abrams remains committed to Trek and will, at the very least, serve as producer on Star Trek III (or Star Trek XIII, depending on your point of view). What’s more, he’s also going to remain attached to at least one more film in the Mission: Impossible franchise.

Abrams’ next, Star Trek Into Darkness, hits theaters on May 17 and reunites Chris Pine, John Cho, Bruce Greenwood, Simon Pegg, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban and Anton Yelchin with a cast of newcomers that includes Benedict Cumberbatch, Alice Eve and Peter Weller.

Star Wars: Episode VII, meanwhile, is being written by Michael Arndt and is scheduled to hit theaters sometime in 2015.”

This was the one thing I was worried about, that JJ wouldn’t get around to finishing what he started with Star Trek, but luckily this report puts my mind at ease. I had hoped that Abrams wouldn’t leave Star Trek and thankfully he’ll still be around to give us at least one more Star Trek film. Sure this may make his life a little more difficult and possibly cause a bit of complication between Star Wars and Star Trek, but if he can find a way to balance to the two out then the future will be fine.

 
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Posted by on January 26, 2013 in Films, Media

 

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