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QUICK REVIEW: Hardcore Henry

Howdy ladies and gents, it feels like ages since I’ve been to the cinema, I swear being in full-time work has ruined my availability for watching films in the cinema. But since I was still partly awake after work I decided to check out Hardcore Henry. Now besides some rumblings I’d heard about the film online, I’d mainly known about this film via the coverage of it on Collider Movie Talk and knew especially after that I’d have to give the film a shot. So now that I’ve seen it it’s time to pass judgement! ūüėÄ

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I’m gonna call it now, this film is the best video game film ever. Period. While it has a lot to do with the way the film’s presented, the story also felt very rooted in the real of gaming with the way the certain characters were introduced, the character progression, certain story revelations and a final confrontation and everything. For people familiar with action/adventure games based in the first-person perspective they should feel right at home and will get the most enjoyment of this story. Beyond feeling like a video game story, Hardcore Henry‘s plot is just bananas. It starts out simply enough, but once the antagonist shows up and the action takes place, things just go from one to one hundred, and as the plot continued things just got stranger and more bizarre. This is a fictional tale with some interesting character-focused material at the center of things, but there’s certain major plot points towards the latter side of the film that I wasn’t too keen on and part of me felt like the film was a little longer than it needed to be, and the film could have worked better as a short film instead.

When it comes to the cast they did a good job in their roles. I really liked Sharlto Copley as Jimmy, he was crazy, magnetic and funny in this role and for me this the best performance he’s given since District 9 where he was able to act but also have fun with his role in the film too. Danila Kozlovsky was also really great as Akan, the film’s villain. I really enjoyed how eccentric, threatening and charismatic he was, and while I liked him a lot I would have liked to have seen more from him, and was it just me or did Akan remind anyone of the bad guy from Far Cry 4? Haley Bennett was beautiful and engaging as Estelle and finally Tim Roth’s appearance in this film was also awesome as well.

The presentation was pretty hardcore, for lack of better word. Visually the film was pretty intense and it was mainly because of the first-person point of view camera technique. The whole film is shot in first-person, like Henry had a GoPro camera on his head over the course of the entire film and depending on your views on found footage/first-person shooter video games you’ll either embrace it or get very sick. This film’s camera movements go from being calm to chaotic as hell with your view of events moving at crazy speeds all over the place. That being said the first-person camera movements were some of the most realistic I’ve seen in any film so far. Plus the use of action and violence just adds to the madness and fun nature of the film, and the CGI while it varied in its levels of realism, it was used very well where it was apparent. And the film score by definitely felt right, the adrenaline-fueled music definitely worked well in the film and the use of a certain famous song (which I won’t spoil) really added to this one really sweet action sequence as well.

In conclusion Hardcore Henry was a very interesting experience and while I had certain nitpicks with the story and some of the crazy camera movements, overall it is a film that I think everyone should see once. The action and ridiculous nature of the film is worth the price of admission for sure. ūüėÄ

Rating: 7.5/10 (Not perfect, but a bloody cool experience!)

So have you seen or are you going to see Hardcore Henry and if so what did you think of it? Whatever your thoughts be sure to drop them in the comment section below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! ūüėÄ

 
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Posted by on April 12, 2016 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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SIMPLE REVIEW: Selma

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

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The premise for the film is as follows:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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Month of Superhero Film Reviews: The Incredible Hulk

Howdy ladies and gentlemen and welcome to Day #19 of my¬†Month of Superhero Film Reviews!¬†During this month I‚Äôll be reviewing of some of the best and worst comic book adapted films. Okay now that we’ve talked about the filth that is Hulk, now we get to talk about the much better Hulk film that came out in 2008, The Incredible¬†Hulk.

Alrighty then, time to talk about a much better Hulk film. I remember seeing this film in 2008 and thought it was okay, better than Ang Lee’s one but not anything to talk about when compared to Iron Man a month prior. In the years since the film’s release I’ve watched this film and it hasn’t really gotten any better. so here we are in 2013 watching it again for the sake of my superhero film reviews, so let’s dive in once again!

In this film the plot¬†involves Bruce Banner as he becomes the Hulk as an unwitting pawn in a military scheme to reinvigorate the¬†super soldier¬†program through gamma radiation. On the run, he attempts to cure himself of the Hulk before he is captured by¬†General Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross, but his worst fears are realized when power-hungry soldier Emil Blonsky becomes a similar but more bestial creature. And lastly there’s Betty Ross, Banner’s love interest and General Ross’ daughter who gets stuck in the middle of all this chaos.

The story was pretty decent for the most part. I was glad that this film decided to created a new story rather than connect itself to the previous film. I liked how this story was pretty straightforward and not overly layered and full of pointless plot lines (like the 2003 film). There were also a lot of references to the 1970’s TV show that I worked well and was interconnected with the comics too. The pacing in the film is a bit questionable going from swift to very slow at points especially when it came to the love scenes, and speaking of those scenes… I have to say I wasn’t too keen on the relationship between Bruce and Betty, I didn’t believe the connection between them and felt like the dialogue could have been better to develop them.

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Now let’s talk about the cast starting with¬†Edward Norton¬†as¬†Bruce Banner/Hulk. Ed Norton was a great choice for Banner, Norton looks the part and was definitely better portraying the character’s issues with his inner demons and longing for Betty Ross. Norton also seemed smarter and much more active than Eric Bana’s interpretation.¬†And also I loved how Lou Ferrigno returned to voice Hulk in this film, he has a great voice for the character and I liked his contribution to this film. Then there’s¬†Liv Tyler¬†as¬†Betty Ross. Firstly I have to say that I am a massive admirer of Liv Tyler, she is gorgeous and so pretty, so having her as Betty Ross was an automatic win. Tyler was pretty good¬†as Betty and that’s all I have to say on the matter.

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Now let’s talk about Tim Roth¬†as¬†Emil Blonsky/Abomination. Roth is a good actor and while he did a decent job in this film, I wasn’t keen on how arrogant and power-hungry he was. I also didn’t like the treatment of Blonsky’s character, he was very plain and generic and I hated how he got powers before actually becoming the Abomination, it felt illogical. And there’s¬†William Hurt¬†as¬†General “Thunderbolt” Ross, Sam Elliot was pretty good in the last film, though Hurt was about on the same level as Elliot, but I preferred the look of Hurt in this film.¬†Tim Blake Nelson also played the scientist¬†Samuel Sterns, he was kind of annoying and overly excited about Bruce and his powers and I felt like it was a waste of a good comic book character. And the cameo from Robert Downey, Jr. as¬†Tony Stark¬†at the end of the film was greatly appreciated.

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Now let’s talk about the presentation. Visually this film is pretty good and creates a much darker and moodier atmosphere with its use of colour, lighting and more horror-based references. The action scenes and sequences in this film, while not as over-the-top as Hulk, are much more impressive sporting a lot better CGI, camera angles and realism. I also want to highlight the fact that this Hulk looks WAY BETTER in this film than he did before. 2003’s Hulk was a fat blob who was in no way scary or intimidating, in this film Hulk is beastly, he’s ripped, all muscle and he looks like a force of nature that you should be afraid of. This film also had much better animation and sound effects. When the Hulk, military or Abomination jump, hit, crash and smash, it actually sounds and feels realistic, unlike that crappy film before that had so many issues with the impact of its sound effects and having decent animated action scenes. As for the soundtrack by. Craig Armstrong is nice. I liked it, there was definitely a better sense of urgency and drama going on with this soundtrack and while it lacked the diversity of Danny Elfman’s score in the previous film, this film has a better overall tone.

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And lastly how does it compare to the comics? As I said before I’ve only read bits and bobs of Hulk comics, but I feel like this film done a better job of creating some of the elements that would make a good live action Hulk film. The Hulk character was improved a great deal, there was also the inclusion of the characters Abomination, Doc Samson and¬†Samuel Sterns. The main issue I found with this film is the treatment of the Abomination. His character not only looks completely different and ugly, but his origins are completely altered too.

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So to conclude The Incredible¬†Hulk¬†is a decent film and is a HELL of a lot better than the 2003 film. The problem is that this film is just not incredible, it’s just adequate. This film lacks the proper pull that can be found in Iron Man, Thor and Captain America. The film has a good cast and good action scenes, but the story is just not there, the villain is lame and the action for all of its merits does get a little boring towards the end. This is not¬†The Incredible¬†Hulk, this is¬†The Adequate¬†Hulk.

Rating: 6/10 (Good, but by no means incredible)

So there’s my review people, only 11 more to go. So have you seen The Incredible Hulk and if so what are your thoughts on it? Drop me a comment and let me know your thoughts yo! Come back tomorrow and I’ll have a new film review online, until then peace out!

 
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Posted by on June 19, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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