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REVISITED: Doubt

Good day to you ladies and gents, and welcome to another review in the REVISITED series where I’ll be reviewing films I haven’t seen for a while and see if they still hold up since or not. And today’s review will be of a film I haven’t seen for a few years, Doubt.

Now I remember renting this film from Blockbuster back in 2010 during my film discovery phase in college doing media production, and I remember once it was over I was really impressed with the film overall but was deeply unsettled. And that is a feeling I have never forgotten. So after getting into films a heck of a lot more since I was 20, I wanted to rewatch this film and see how it was, and in all honesty, I feel about the same, both impressed and disturbed. Even as I type this review, there’s a feeling in my heart and a bit of tremble in my movements because this film affected me so. Straight from the beginning you know something is off, there’s a smell in the air, but you don’t know what it is just yet, however, once certain plot points and character motivations and suspicions come to light, then things get intriguing. What we have is a very horrible situation with the priest and a child, and the head nun trying to ascertain whether something indecent has happened or not. The situation is shrouded in mystery, allegations and hearsay and because there’s no clear evidence it makes it makes for some awkward and intense moments throughout. As the film progressed, I felt more and more troubled and just goes to show well this film was crafted, there is a lot of attention to detail when it comes to the tone, dialogue, pacing and ambivalence of this situation, and it felt very realistic in the way certain situations were set up and the complicated battles that followed between the priest and head nun. I liked how not only the cinematography helped accentuate the uneasy nature of the plot (especially with Dutch angles), but also how the weather played a big part in elevating the mood from being calm to being quite ferocious. The performances in the film were fantastic, this was the first serious film I’d seen both Philip Seymour Hoffman and Meryl Streep in and both of them impressed me greatly. Meryl Streep as Sister Aloysius is this very strict and scary principal who doesn’t seem too likeable at times, but because she’s so mean it does lead to some funny moments, but beyond her surface level, she does care about the kids and does not let unjust things happen under her watch which makes her very crafty, tenacious and more aggressive. Streep is magnetic and acts with style and finesse, but also a great level of intensity, and it was this film that made me understand why Streep is talked about so much in the film community. Not to be outdone, Philip Seymour Hoffman as Father Flynn is a kind and warm, and yet at times he seems off and untrustworthy, and there are times when he shows a darker side which is very creepy and unexpected. Hoffman’s performance is very captivating as he handles every situation with subtly and dangerous levels of realism, and along with Streep, they have some powerful scenes together. Amy Adams is also really great as Sister James, she’s a cute and kind-hearted soul who wants to believe in the best of people but has reason to doubt the priest. And finally, there’s Viola Davis who plays a significant role as Mrs. Miller and good gravy that woman can sell anything because her acting is that good, such power and sincerity. Overall Doubt is an incredible film with great direction performances and a solid and haunting film score from Howard Shore.

So have you seen Doubt and if so what do you think? Also if you’ve seen it more than once does it hold up better, worse or the same as before? Be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments section below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on October 14, 2017 in Film Reviews, Reviews

 

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EPIC REVIEW: Suicide Squad

Hey there ladies and gents, time for another new review and today I’ll be talking about one of my most anticipated films of 2016 which I saw around an ago; Suicide Squad. Now for those not aware I’ve been hyped for this film since the first Comic-Con trailer, the choice of director, cast and overall marketing just made me believe that this was gonna be the DC film for me, and more so than Batman V Superman, this was the film that I had most hope for in terms of expanding the DC cinematic universe. Now unless you’ve been away from the internet then you must be aware of all the negative reviews this film has gained over the last few days, and even though I caught glimpses of it, I decided to steer clear of those reviews and see it for myself. So I watched the earliest screening in my cinema, now I’m here, and well, here’s the thing, Suicide Squad, it’s not bad, but was not the amazing film I wanted it to be.

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The story can be described as the following:

A secret government agency led by Amanda Waller recruits imprisoned supervillains to execute dangerous black ops missions and save the world from a powerful threat in exchange for clemency.

This story had some interesting elements with the formation of the villain squad and some of their individual stories, but the plot felt a little muddled and could have been a lot simpler and more streamlined. The problems begin with the story as I felt like there was a few too many moving pieces, not that it was hard to follow, more so there were a few side/sub plots that could have been shortened or gotten rid of altogether. Also the flow of the story felt off with some pacing issues and oddly edited scenes. And the overall plot was fine, but it had several elements that I’d seen in other comic books films, but not in a good way, plus I was kind of hoping for a film that was on a smaller scale and while this story was smaller than the last two DC films, at the same time it felt like it was reaching further to a global scale and that was unnecessary.

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Now let’s talk about the cast, they may be the best part about the whole film, though this ensemble cast are not properly balanced, and some get way more screen time and character development than others. Let’s start with the top-tier characters with Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Viola Davis as Amanda Waller, Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flagg and Jared Leto as The Joker. Smith was on-point, he was funny, charismatic, mean and commanding, pretty much all the reasons you like the actor and I liked what he did as Deadshot, but I felt like his character got the most screen time and character development, and some of his scenes could have been cut to give more fleshing out time to other characters. Robbie was solid as Harley Quinn, there was that right balance of playfulness, craziness and sexiness, and while I wasn’t keen on some of the backstory, the overly sexual costume and personality traits, Harley was still a lot of fun. Davis was my favourite as Amanda Waller, she was a no-nonsense, ruthless and intimidating individual and Davis brought her A-game. And Kinnaman, while I didn’t care too much about his character, this was one of the better roles I’ve liked him in. Then there’s the slightly lower tier of the cast. Jai Courtney and Jay Hernandez brought some interesting flavour to the film as Boomerang and El Diablo, Courtney was fun, hilarious and crazy, while Hernandez brought a cool seriousness to his character and ended up being one of my favourite people. And Cara Delevingne as Enchantress, I kind of liked her but at the same time her performance and character fluctuated between me liking and disliking her. As for everyone else they either alright or just there, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc was alright but we barely got to know him and he didn’t say or do too much, and finally Karen Fukuhara as Katana severely underutilized and had some cool minor character detailed, but she was wasted and it pissed me off because it felt almost as bad as what X-Men: Apocalypse did with Jubilee.

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When it comes to the presentation I wasn’t very impressed with this film. Visually the film had some decent moments with the action sequences, use of colour and CGI, but I wasn’t keen on how some of the scenes were framed, the action sequences were alright but lacked the right kind of choreography and cinematography to make them stand out, some of the lighting and editing was off and the CGI was iffy from time to time. Maybe I’m being a little harsh, but the visual material is one of the key elements I look forward to in any comic book adapted film and this film just didn’t have the wow factor. Also on the audio side of things the film score by Steven Price was a little bland and did nothing to amplify what was happening on-screen, plus there felt like there was an overabundance of music put in this film, and while I’m not against the use of popular music in films, at the same time it felt distracting and placed all over the film for the sake of it. Oh and finally, I dunno if it was just me but the sound effects really lacked impact especially when it came to the gunfire and characters getting smacked on the ground or into walls.

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In the end Suicide Squad is not a terrible film, it’s certainly not Fan4stic or X-Men Origins: Wolverine, but I wanted to love this film so badly and it pains me that another one of these non-Batman films from DC has ended up not being a complete success considering the talent involved. I feel like this will be another polarizing film, but for the sake of your curiosity/sanity, give this film a watch and decide for yourselves.

So are you going to watch Suicide Squad and if you’ve seen it, pass on your thoughts in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on August 5, 2016 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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QUICK REVIEW: Suicide Squad Trailer #2

Howdy ladies and gents, time for another one of those trailer reviews and today I’m here to talk about the newest trailer for Suicide Squad. Now I’m pretty sure I did a review for the first trailer last year, but according to my archives I didn’t. I really enjoyed the first trailer and since then my interest in the film has only increased, the new posters were cool, but I was just waiting for the new trailer and later on it was dropped.

So here’s the trailer below:

Now I only got to see this trailer just before I got to go to work around 10am today and I was impressed. This trailer has a nice sense of personality and charm, and while we don’t get too many new details when it comes to the story, we do learn a few more details like:

  1. The fact that we see the villains taken from jail to another undisclosed location and drafted into a team.
  2. We see more individual moments from the members of the squad.
  3. And we start to see some hints as to what the squad will be up against.

This trailer is all about Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, I just love this girl’s enthusiasm, personality and timing for humour through her strange personality. Robbie just steals the spotlight and it’s not just because of how gorgeous she is in her costume, but more so because she has some of the best dialogue and scenes. Just behind her was Jared Leto as the Joker, while this trailer doesn’t show much more than before, it did allow us hear him speak and laugh and illustrate this new interpretation of madness. It remains to be seen whether he’ll be a super memorable Joker when compared to what’s come before, but I’m sure he’ll be great. I really enjoyed seeing more of the characters Deadshot, Enchantress and her creepy smoke aura, and more moments of Rick Flag and Captain Boomerang (who looks pretty funny as played by Jai Courtney). And it also helps that the trailer included “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen, besides “Don’t Stop Me Now“, this is one of the most popular of Queen songs and it was well interrogated into the trailer with specific scenes and moments. And while I don’t need famous songs in trailers, this was one of the better ones with the action cut to the music which amplified the visuals.

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To conclude Suicide Squad looks like a lot of fun, and this new trailer only increases my excitement. Now It’s probably not in the high-end of my most anticipated films of 2016, but it’s very charismatic, colourful, action-packed and humourous. The film could be okay, but I’m hoping it’ll be much more than that and help launch the DC cinematic universe beyond Batman V Superman and the upcoming Justice League and Wonder Woman films.

So have you seen the second trailer for Suicide Squad 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 January 20, 2016 in Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Viola Davis Confirms Talks To Play ‘Amanda Waller’ In Suicide Squad

Howdy ladies and gents, time for a bit of film news and today’s story relates to some casting surrounding the upcoming Suicide Squad. The following information comes from ComicBookMovie:

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It was rumored last month that Viola Davis had entered talks to nab the role of Amanda Waller in the highly-anticipated Suicide Squad movie, but The Help actress has now confirmed her inclusion. Speaking with Nerd Report at the press junket for Blackhat, Davis admitted that she’s yet to do any research via DC Comics. “Not yet,” she said. “I have not started reading them yet. I’ve read up about her but I’m working out my schedule for Suicide Squad.” She continued, “I’m fascinated by her. I’m fascinated by her in this world of superhero-ness because she is not a woman that you would expect. I think that she is a massive contradiction. She’s this big powerful black woman, hard, ready to pick up a gun and shoot anyone at will. I’m fascinated in exploring her psychology, just put it that way. And I’m excited to pick up a gun.” Anyhow, Viola Davis was previously in contention with Octavia Spencer and Oprah Winfrey for the Amanda Waller role, but she now joins Will Smith (Deadshot), Tom Hardy (Rick Flag), Jared Leto (the Joker), Margot Robbie (Harley Quinn), Jai Courtney (Boomerang), with Cara Delevingne (Enchantress), and Jessie Eisenberg (Lex Luther). Directed by David Ayer, Suicide Squad starts shooting in April and hits theaters August 5, 2016!

It looks like the rumours were true, we now have our Amanda Waller in the form of Viola Davis and to be fair she is a great choice, she’s an Oscar nominated actress and has great screen presence so if you want someone good to play someone like Waller, Davis is your woman. While it would have been interesting to see what Oprah would have brought to this role, I’m still happy about the casting choice and Davis’ comments, seems like she knows her stuff and is ready to become fully immersed in the source material which is always a plus.

So what do you think of this casting news? Please be sure to comment below, laters! 😀

 
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Posted by on January 7, 2015 in Films, Media

 

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I Feel Good In This Get On Up Review

Good day to you ladies and gents, time for a new film review and today I’ll be talking about Get On Up, a film I have been eagerly anticipating as of late. I wasn’t initially fussed about another biopic, however since the main star, Chadwick Boseman became part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe recently I knew that I had to give this film a watch, especially because of the buzz that was coming from America. So does this film meet the hype or not? Well read on and find out.

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The story for the film can be summarised as the following:

“A chronicle of James Brown’s rise from extreme poverty to become one of the most influential musicians in history.”

I thought the story was pretty good, what we got was a film documenting the major points in James Brown’s life from childhood to the early 90’s. I thought it was interesting to see the Brown go from strength to strength to become to the person who he always wanted to be through, talent, luck and help from his friends. The film didn’t shy away from the dark side of James Brown’s life in show business and his personal life too. Overall the story was an enjoyable and engaging one with go piece-to-camera moments that make you feel like you’re part of the action. If I had to fault the film I would say that the story here felt like it omitted certain details of Brown’s life, especially when it comes to his family and because of the time jumps between years it felt like there was so much more that could have been explored. Plus since the film was non-linear and hopped forward and backwards throughout Brown’s life, sometimes it was easy to lose what time period you were in or feel like there wasn’t enough time to take certain things in.

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When it comes to the cast they are very nice, but this is Chadwick Boseman’s time to shine as he just kills it as James Brown. Now I liked Boseman in 42, however his acting talent is just one another level in this film. My god, Boseman is just on fire as the godfather of soul. The man struts, dances and talks in a way that embodies the legendary artist. I’m not a Brown expert, but it felt like Boseman took on the role with such care, charisma and tenacity that you forget that he’s even there, just the subtle mannerisms are well-done and my god Boseman dances so well too. What a don! The other strong performance came from Nelsan Ellis as Bobby Byrd, Ellis played the role of Brown’s long-term friend and music colleague. What’s interesting about Byrd is the fact that he was Brown’s back and respects his musical talents, however he also has aspirations of his own and sees that when Brown is in the wrong. I also loved seeing Dan Aykroyd as Ben Bart, just seeing Aykroyd in a substantial role for the first time in ages was a great feeling. Viola Davis as Susie Brown is pretty good, while Octavia Spencer as usual does a fine job as Aunt Honey. I also enjoyed seeing Craig Robinson in a more serious role as Maceo Parker, while Jill Scott was almost unrecognizable and good as Deidre “Dee-Dee” Jenkins. I liked seeing Lennie James (from The Walking Dead) as Joseph “Joe” James and finally Brandon Mychal Smith did a fine job as Little Richard.

And then there’s the music, damn, if you’re not in the mood to dance during this film then there is something wrong you because it is badass. This film is pretty much a best of collection of the most classic James Brown songs and I was loving every minute of it. While I’m not the biggest Jame Brown fan, I’ve known of his music since childhood and several of his songs make me feel joy and happiness in ways that cannot be put into words, and this film had SO many good jams. The highlights for me was hearing “Super bad” and “Get Up (I Feel Like Being a) Sex Machine“, the former being one of my favourite songs of all time. The soundtrack by Thomas Newman is also very nice and dramatic too.

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In conclusion Get On Up is a pretty good biopic with a strong central performance, an intriguing look into James Brown’s life and has a beautiful selection of music. While there is certainly story aspects that are left out and some similarities to 2004’s Ray which I couldn’t separate while watching the film, that being said, this film is a good time and I would recommend it especially for fans of Brown’s music.

Rating: 8/10

So what did you think of Get On Up? And if you’re a longtime fan of James Brown do you feel like this was an accurate portrayal of his life of do you feel like it was missing something?

 
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Posted by on November 26, 2014 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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