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EPIC REVIEW: Spider-Man: Homecoming

Howdy people of the internet, how’s it going? So today is a special day as I finally get to share my thoughts on the latest film from Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures in the form of Spider-Man: Homecoming. For those of you who aren’t aware, Spider-Man is my favourite superhero and when he was introduced in Captain America: Civil War last year I knew I was ready for his solo film straight away. So with a decent marketing campaign and a lot of hopeful interviews from the cast and crew about how this latest version of Spider-Man would turn out, is it a successful reboot or another disappointing session? Well read on and find out! 🙂

So the story can be described as the following:

“Several months after the events of Captain America: Civil War, Peter Parker, with the help of his mentor Tony Stark, tries to balance his life as an ordinary high school student in Queens, New York City while fighting crime as his superhero alter ego Spider-Man as a new threat, the Vulture, emerges.”

Straight away what I like about Homecoming as an overall film is that it is familiar, and yet totally unique from the previous versions we’ve had in the past. Instead of getting the conventional origin story from the comics, we instead get a different kind of origin that feels more like “Spider-Man: The Early Years” instead of “Spider-Man: The Beginning“. There were a lot of recognizable elements on display for those aware of Spider-Man’s source material when it comes to Peter being a high school student, balancing his superhero life with his personal life and basically just growing up and dealing with the highs and lows that life throws at you. What’s great is that the story beats you know about the Spider-Man mythos are executed very well, but this also took a few risks as there were numerous surprises that really caught me off-guard and enhanced my experience of watching this film. Also tonally the film is perfect, Homecoming has the right balance of light-heartedness, action and heart that’s enjoyable for kids and adults. Plus the references to the comics is great for those paying attention with some cool verbal and visual material, oh and Spider-Man also fit into the MCU wonderfully, this adventure for all the travelling still felt small in scale with just the right amount of references from other films without being overbearing.

The cast for this film was excellent with there being memorable performances from everyone in the main cast to the minor roles and cameos too. Firstly there’s Tom Holland as who was perfect as Spider-Man/Peter Parker, I knew as soon as I saw Holland in Civil War that he’d crush it in this film but I didn’t know he’d kill it this well. Holland was the perfect Peter Parker, he was relatable, endearing, funny, heroic, a little cocky and tenacious, plus he was so charming and engaging to watch, that when you watch the successes and failures of this character you give a damn. Michael Keaton was really good as Adrian Toomes/Vulture, I appreciated how his character was not just a villain doing bad things for the sake of it, but had a logical reason for hs actions, he was perceptive and smart, and I thought the Vulture was elevated by Keaton’s performance which really gave the character a tough and intimidating presence. And then there’s Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark/Iron Man and he was great too, seeing Stark transition into the mentor role for Peter worked well for this story, his presence was notable but not nearly as overstated as the trailers would have you believe. Stark was used sparingly but his scenes had purpose, dramatic weight and the trademark humour that makes RDJ so fun to watch. Oh and the return of Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan was great, he was so gruff and serious andhis dry sense of humour lended itself to this film well.

Jacob Batalon was fabulous as Parker’s best friend Ned, I liked how funny, quirky and nerdy he was, but also how he was a genuine friend to Peter offering useful advance and helping him out once he discovers Peter’s secret. Zendaya was good as Michelle was pretty cool, she was this weird loner who was smart and rude but also quite funny, Zendaya really got into the role and you could tell she was having fun with the role. Also Laura Harrier as Liz was wonderful, she was so cute and kind and Harrier’s performance was so captivating. Tony Revolori as Flash was an interesting new take on the classic character, I liked how charismatic and hot-headed he was and he certainly had some memorable moments. Marisa Tomei as Aunt May was wonderful, I feared from the marketing that her role would be next to nothing, but thankfully May was upbeat, humourous and caring, but she also wasn’t a fool and said what was on her mind and Tomei made the character shine and stand out. I enjoyed what Donald Glover brought to the film as Aaron Davis, Hannibal Buress was really funny in his role, Bokeem Woodbine and Logan Marshall-Green were pretty solid too and finally Abraham Attah as Abe was easily one of my favourite people in the film with his dialogue making me laugh a lot.

When it comes to the presentation it was really good. Visually the film had good cinematography, good choreographed action sequences that when quick, funny and hard-hitting, oh and the CGI was really solid with some great attention to detail especially for Spider-Man’s suit. Besides certain scenes at night that were really dark and inconsistent visual effects, the visual side of things was great. And the film score by Michael Giacchino was pretty good, though not as impressive as I had hoped. Now don’t get me wrong, it captured the right kind of tone for the film and during some of the more upbeat/fun, adventurous or emotional moments the music was gorgeous and tapped into that signature sound that Giacchino is known for in his previous films, however, I felt like as an overall score it wasn’t as good as some of his previous material.

To conclude Spider-Man: Homecoming was wonderful and everything I wanted it to be and then some. And while I reckon Spider-Man 2 is still my favourite Spidey film, this first solo film in the MCU had the heart and soul of a good superhero film that gets better the more I think about it. Now I’m sure some people will find reasons to hate on this film but I can’t when it is so fun. 😀

So have you seen Spider-Man: Homecoming and if so what do you think of it? Be sure to drop me a comment and I’ll see ya on the next review! 🙂

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Posted by on July 7, 2017 in Film Reviews, Reviews

 

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QUICK REVIEW: Spider-Man: Homecoming Trailer #1

Howdy ladies and gents, how’s it going? Its been a while but it is time for another trailer review! There’s been many trailers dropping left right and center over the course of the last few months or recently like I’ve really enjoyed like Logan, Wonder Woman, The Belko Experience and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 to name a few, but I’ve just not had the time to talk about them… However, when I found out that two new trailers were coming out for Spider-Man: Homecoming I knew I’d have to drop my thoughts online. 😛

Oh and before we continue I’ll be talking about the main trailer and not the international one.

So here’s the trailer below:

So my first reaction after seeing this film was “Nice, very nice.” This trailer wasn’t amazing, spectacular or sensational haha, however it was solid and it makes me confident that we’ll get a solid Spider-Man film, at least that’s what I hope.

There’s another trailer which you can watch here which has some interesting different shots of Michael Keaton’s Vulture, and Tony Stark and Peter Parker’s interactions among other things.

First thing I like about this trailer is that it feels like it fits within the style and tone of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, from the cinematography to the colour palette and style of the action, it feels in line with what’s come before especially with the Russo Brothers Captain America films. That being said the film certainly seems to have enough unique elements that will hopefully allow it to stand alone from the other MCU films despite the inclusion of Tony Stark and the ties to Captain America: Civil War. Another thing that I enjoyed was how well this trailer illustrates a day in the life of Peter Parker, we get to see his school life, take out bad guys as Spider-Man, and hang with Tony Stark. Seems like Peter Parker will get up to a fair amount of stuff, most of which falls in line with what Peter has dealt with in the comics/previous films, but with the heavier focus on Peter’s school life, the mentorship of Tony Stark and the introduction of the Vulture I believe this film will offer up some nice variation on what we’ve seen from previous Spider-Man films. My favourite parts of the trailer were: 1) Seeing Spidey take out those robbers in the avengers masks, that felt like classic Spidey with the jokes and action. 2) The Tony Stark and Peter Parker interaction in the car was so delightful, Stark’s comments about the do’s and don’ts of being a superhero was great, but that awkward hug/opening the door moment was the best. And 3) The final shot of Iron Man and Spidey flying through the sky together, that is pure comic book fan service and I love it! The only concerns I have is 1) Will Michael Keaton’s Vulture be a good villain or another forgettable villain for not only the MCU but also for the Spidey films since the last good villain was Alfred Molina’s Doc Ock). And 2) Will Stark’s inclusion in the film take focus away from Spidey in his own film? I hope not. I really hope that this is the film that taps into the Spectacular Spider-Man Animated Series realm of awesomeness and translates some of that story and character material into this film, it’s unlikely but I can still dream. 😛

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To conclude the first trailer for Spider-Man: Homecoming looks pretty good. The film looks like it not only fits in with the rest of the MCU films, but it also feels true to the source material while also providing something different in its style and aesthetics. The trailer didn’t blow me away, but it didn’t have to, it just needed to reassure me that the film would be worth watching; and this trailer did just that. Bring on July yo! 😀

So have you seen the first trailer for Spider-Man: Homecoming and if so what do you think of it? Are you more or less excited than before? Be sure to drop me a comment and I’ll see ya on the next review! 🙂

 
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Posted by on December 9, 2016 in Films, Media, Reviews

 

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EPIC REVIEW: Captain America: Civil War (Spoiler-Free!)

Howdy people of the internet, so after waiting two painstakingly long days to get back to my laptop I’m here to give you my review of Captain America: Civil War. I’ve seen the film twice in IMAX (once at the midnight screening and again on the same afternoon) and I’ve had a lot of thoughts in my head about this film, and a lot of it is spoiler-based, but I’m going to try my hardest to be as vague and spoiler-free as possible. Alrighty then, let’s begin. 🙂

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So the story can be described as the following:

“After another international incident involving the Avengers results in collateral damage, political pressure mounts to install a system of accountability and a governing body to determine when to enlist the services of the team.”

What should be clarified straight away is that Civil War is definitely Captain America 3 first and foremost, as the story furthers what we learnt in The Winter Soldier, but it also acknowledges the larger world of the MCU by introducing most of the main heroes so far, but also adding new characters and stories in this film. What I loved more so than anything else was that there was drama, real drama and it was material that was raw, emotional and effective. This is easily the most layered and emotional film in the MCU to date dealing with the themes of freedom, accountability, revenge and friendship being handled in a realistic and captivating manner. Not only do get to see Captain America try his best to keep his best friend safe, and butt heads with Iron Man with their different ideologies, but also see our heroes weigh out the pros and cons of their actions, pick sides based on their beliefs and clash. It was not only interesting, it was also complicated morally and ethically too. You’re given both sides of the argument and luckily both sides are effective at what they’re trying to convey, you’ll probably be conflicted during and after the film ends as well. If I have any issues with the story it was probably just a few changes in some of the character motivations which would have elevated the film a little more, but I have to hand it to the writers and the Russo brothers for juggling so much material and making it work in a coherent and stylish manner.

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With the cast they were all brilliant, and while some stood out more than others, everyone has a reason to be in the film and have their moments to shine and some of the best moments in the film are just with characters talking and interacting. Firstly there’s Chris Evans who was brilliant as Steve Rogers/Captain America, he’s a faced with difficult choices, and yet found a way to be just as heroic, charismatic and true to his beliefs while also being a leader and friend to his allies. Robert Downey Jr. killed it as Tony Stark/Iron Man, just when I thought I’d seen everything from this character, we find out there’s still more to learn. In this film Stark was very still very humours, but also passionate, vulnerable and driven and while he seemed like the bad guy, at the same time you understood his viewpoint. Scarlett Johansson  was wonderful as Black Widow, it was cool to see her character more in line with The Winter Soldier version where she was intelligent,logical and showed off her skill set on and off of the battlefield. Sebastian Stan also did well as Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier continuing to be an interesting and tragic character with good ties to Steve Rogers, and speaking of ties to Steve, Anthony Mackie also did a great job as The Falcon, their bond continued to grow and get tested with the appearance of Bucky and I liked how funny Falcon continues to be.

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Oh and Black Panther, dear god, he was brilliant! Chadwick Boseman was everything I wanted him to be and everything, as T’Challa/Black Panther he was intelligent, driven, honourable, tenacious and when he threw down, damn! He was insanely athletic, flexible and animal-like and I adored his treatment in this film. Paul Bettany and Elizabeth Olsen as The Vision and Scarlet Witch were brilliant, I love how they had developed a grew since Age of Ultron, but found new hurdles and personal issues to fight through, Vision continued to have a lot of funny and thought-provoking dialogue, while Scarlet Witch had a good few light-hearted and dramatic moments that developed her character in great ways. Jeremy Renner looked like was having a great time as Hawkeye and I really enjoyed his scenes, the same could also be said for Paul Rudd and Don Cheadle as Ant-Man and War Machine, both of them bring back what you loved about their characters and have great moments in the film.

William Hurt’s performance as Thunderbolt Ross was also great, he’s changed a great deal since The Incredible Hulk, but I really enjoyed his role as the government official attempting to keep the Avengers in check. It was great to see more of Emily VanCamp as Sharon Carter as she had more to do and had a good few memorable moments in the film, and Martin Freeman as Everett K. Ross was delightful and tough and I’m sure we haven’t seen the last from him, and the return of Frank Grillo as Brock Rumlow/Crossbones while brief was really cool. Daniel Brühl as Baron Helmut Zemo was interesting, while he’s not utilized in a conventional way and won’t please fans of the comics, I thought his role was very smart, though I believe the film would have worked without him. And finally Tom Holland as Spider-Man, holy crap! Marvel Studios nailed it! If you’re like me you’ve seen Spidey done five times and he’s been done well in certain areas but not completely comic book accurate. But here he’s the most accurate Spider-Man the to date with right balance of action and humour. He’s introduced in a logical and natural way, and seeing Holland as Peter Parker inside and out of the suit was delightful as he felt so fresh different to the actors who’ve come before him.

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When it comes to the presentation it was pretty solid. Visually the film is very nice, the cinematography is great with some wonderfully shot action sequences, good editing and wonderful CGI. The fight scenes are some of the best in the MCU so far with really creative, acrobatic and versatile action for everyone involved whether they be superpowered or not, and there’s the much-talked about epic fight sequence in the airport which for me was one of the most beautiful fanboy moments I’ve ever seen. It was like a comic book come to life in the best way possible. However I will say for everything I liked, I will say that the shaky cam in some of the fight scenes was a little chaotic, and the visual effects in certain parts of the film felt a little lacking in detail and didn’t mesh as well with the live-action footage, but those are nitpicks for sure. As for the film score, Henry Jackman returns to compose and his score definitely feels in line with Winter Soldier, but was also a little more dramatic and heroic than before. However this score while it works within the film, it didn’t have any standout tracks or a theme that I can remember like some of Marvel’s previous films.

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In conclusion Captain America: Civil War was a lot of fun and solid follow-up to Winter Soldier. While it won’t change the game for the superhero genre, it did dive a little deeper into those thought-provoking and emotional territories that the MCU hadn’t fully embraced beforehand, and with some awesome action, an intriguing story and well-developed characters, this is an adventure that people won’t want to miss out on especially if you’re fans of these films and comics.

Rating: 8.5/10

So are you going to see Captain America: Civil War and if you’ve seen it what did you think of it? Please sound off your thoughts in the comments below ane I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on May 1, 2016 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Tom Holland is the New Spider-Man and Will be Directed by Jon Watts!

Howdy people of the internet, for the first time in a while I am here to give you some film news and of course its superhero-related! For a while there’s been rumoured and certain amounts of information surrounding the casting of the new Spider-Man film and the new director, but nothing official had been released… Until now! The following information comes from superherohype:

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Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios have announced that, following a lengthy casting process, actor Tom Holland (The ImpossibleIn the Heart of the Sea) will play Peter Parker/Spider-Man in their next Spider-Man film, which is set to hit theaters on July 28. 2017. In addition, director Jon Watts, director of the upcoming thriller Cop Car, will helm the feature.

Marvel and Sony Pictures, and producers Kevin Feige and Amy Pascal conducted an extensive search for both the actor and the director. The studios and producers were impressed by Holland’s performances in The Impossible, “Wolf Hall,” and the upcoming In the Heart of the Sea, and by a series of complex screen tests. Following Marvel’s tradition of working with the brightest next wave of directors, Watts also went through multiple meetings with Feige, Pascal, and the studio, before winning the job.

“It’s a big day here at Sony. Kevin, Amy and their teams have done an incredible job,” Tom Rothman, Sony Pictures Motion Pictures Group Chairman, said. “The Marvel process is very thorough, and that’s why their results are so outstanding. I’m confident Spider-Man will be no exception. I’ve worked with a number of up-and-coming directors who have gone on to be superstars and believe that Jon is just such an outstanding talent. For Spidey himself, we saw many terrific young actors, but Tom’s screen tests were special. All in all, we are off to a roaring start.”

“As with James Gunn, Joss Whedon, and the Russo brothers, we love finding new and exciting voices to bring these characters to life,” Kevin Feige added “We spent a lot of time with Jon and find his take and work inspiring.”

Amy Pascal added, “Sony, Marvel, Kevin and I all knew that for Peter Parker, we had to find a vibrant, talented young actor capable of embodying one of the most well-known characters in the world. With Tom, we’ve found the perfect actor to bring Spider-Man’s story into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.”

So we finally have our new Spider-Man and director, once again, FINALLY! No more rumours, no more speculation, just concrete official announcement online and it’s a nice feeling. With that being said I’m going to give my thoughts on the actor and then the director.

So Tom Holland, while he doesn’t necessarily look like someone I would cast as Peter Parker, that’s all subjective. What Holland does have going for him is that he’s young, talented and has been showing off some acrobatic skills recently too, so there’s that. But in all honesty I like this choice of casting, Holland seems like he has the right kind of body frame and face for a teenage Peter Parker so the school stuff will be believable, also going off of that video, hopefully Holland will be doing his own practical stunts like Andrew Garfield did in The Amazing Spider-Man. I have only seen him in The Impossible he was really good in that film, so that gives me confidence in his skills, looking at his filmography, it seems like he’ll be popping up in a few films and I’m looking forward to what he’ll bring to In the Heart of the Sea.

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As for the director Jon Watts, he’s another element altogether. With Marvel’s previous director choices I’ve at least known them by name or seen/heard of their films like the Russo Brothers with Community, James Gunn with Super, Joss Whedon with Buffy and Serenity, Shane Black with Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, etc. And with Sony the same rule applies, I knew about Sam Raimi because of The Evil Dead and Marc Webb because of 500 Days of Summer. But this Watts guy is completely off the radar, he’s done some TV work and has directed a few short films and one feature but he’s really an unknown at this point. Marvel Studios and Sony must have a lot of confidence in him to take on this project. Now I’m not saying that films have to have established directors onboard to take on huge projects, but it does make you curious to know what an unknown talent can bring to the table that a bigger name could not. Either way I say good luck to him, I hope he’s the man for the job.

So what do you think of this news? Are you excited or disgusted about the new actor playing Spidey and are you down with the director or not? Please leave your comments below and I’ll see ya on the next film review, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on June 23, 2015 in Films, Media

 

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In The Heart Of The Sea Trailer #1 Quick Review

Howdy ladies and gents, time for a quick trailer review and today I will be talking about Ron Howard’s next big film, In The Heart Of The Sea. Now I’ve been hearing a lot about this film for a while, however, it wasn’t until this trailer came out that I’ve truly gotten invested in this film. I was always going to watch it purely based on the fact that it starred Chris Hemsworth and it was directed by Ron Howard, but this trailer makes me more excited than ever for it.

Check out the trailer below:

So my immediate thoughts after seeing the trailer? Nice, I am intrigued.

Now I’ve never seen too many Ron Howard films, but I know of his credentials and after seeing and loving Rush last year, I am totally down with whatever he decides to direct in the future and while the subject matter shouldn’t really interest me, this trailer is convincing me otherwise. What we have here is a group of men on a ship out at sea looking for a legendary whale, that’s the gist of the tale, however, this trailer makes out like there is much more going on beyond that. It seems like while there is definitely a whale, it seems like there’s many other things going on with the main character and his crew.

There are gun battles, ships being wrecked, harpoons are lifted and thrown, men fall overboard, ships are on fire, birds are flying around in the air for some reason, two men drift ashore on a beach and there’s someone on an island alone. And there’s a lot more on display, but it just looks like there will be a great deal of things happening besides the hunt for the famous whale. And speaking of the whale, bloody hell, look at the size of the thing! And from the way the trailer is handling him, he seems to be treated like some kind of natural disaster, like Godzilla, a monster of the ocean that is hidden until it wants to be found and then causes madness at sea for the humans involved. I love it.

I love the visual style, it seems very dark, vivid with strong colours, interesting lighting and it comes across very stylized and atmospheric and even though there is a use of visual effects, it doesn’t look like it overshadows the film but helps enhance the visual experience. What also helps is the music, the music helps amplify the visuals on-screen having a slow, calm sound and then builds up during the montage of imagery and then winds back down at the end.

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In conclusion In The Heart Of The Sea is looking pretty awesome and the fact that it is coming out in March of next year means I won’t have to wait too for it, I’m down for it.

So what do you think of the first trailer for In The Heart Of The Sea? Does it make you excited or does it leave you uninterested? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to drop them below and I’ll see ya on the next review. 😀

 
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Posted by on October 17, 2014 in Films, Media, Reviews

 

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