Pacific Rim (2013)

Pacific Rim Movie Review

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Pacific Rim Movie Review

Pacific Rim is a 2013 monster film directed by Guillermo del Toro and starring Charlie Hunnam and Idris Elba among others. It is an okay, passable, overloud diversion.

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Hey! Guess who’s back, you one-eyed bitch?

And you owe me a kaiju brain

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Pacific Rim Movie Review

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Now having in mind that I usually dislike mecha, giant robot and loud action media, I was surprised by this movie and it definitely wasn’t as bad or as annoying as I thought it would be. That is because the first half is quite good and a lot of fun. Unlike most people, action annoys me and bores me to death which is why the second half bored me and the first was entertaining to me.

I really enjoyed the banter between some of the characters, the humor is quite solid and I liked the build-up to the eventual overlong action quite a bit. The film surprisingly had pretty strong characters and at least some sort of story so that is why I enjoyed that first half.

But the second half is just so boring. I get that most audiences want this, but that is not my idea of fun. A couple of fights would have been enough and it was entertaining up to that point, but when the entire second half basically become action after action spectacle, then the movie lost me and I was waiting for it to end. It certainly overstayed its welcome.

Of the characters and actors, I thought Idris Elba was quite good and this was one of his more memorable roles. But Charlie Hunnam is boring per usual. Mako Mori definitely plays an interesting character and I liked the relationship between her and Elba. But of course Charlie Day stole the show here and I loved his crazy, nerdy doctor personality. He was expectedly so funny here.

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Pacific Rim Movie Review

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Pacific Rim has some good action, but most of it was forgettable and overly abundant. The choice to shoot it in dark and in water hurt it tremendously as that annoys me, but I still really liked the special effects here as the robots and aliens both looked pretty good. The film has that cool anime style to it while using the color of blue so well.

Pacific Rim is surprisingly very good and entertaining in its first half, but so incredibly boring in its second half which was filled with action scene after action scene and that bored me to death. But the characters are surprisingly solid here and are well played by their actors with Idris Elba being one of the highlights and Charlie Day stealing the show with his signature humor. The movie is too dark, but its anime style with an abundant use of color blue was pleasing. It is a typical and shallow movie which was still surprisingly passable and not as bad as I thought it would be.

My Rating – 3

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Okja (2017)

Okja Movie Review

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Okja Movie Review

Okja is a 2017 action-adventure film directed by Bong Joon-ho and starring Ahn Seo-hyun, Tilda Swinton and Jake Gyllenhaal. It is a major disappointment.

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She is making us full in love with a creature

that we are already looking forward to eating

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Okja Movie Review

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Yes, this is one of the most disappointing films of the year for sure as it just left me unsatisfied and my expectations were way too high for it. I absolutely loved its premise and the film had great potential, but it squandered it all on a very uneven film that suffers from lost identity.

Yes, the fact that Okja is a South Korean-American co-production really speaks a lot as it tries to include both of the country’s sensibilities leading to a giant mess. Tonally speaking, this movie is all over the place and it was definitely too silly for me and the humor is mostly annoying.

I loved the first act and the ending had its moments, but the entire middle part ruined it for me as it focused on all the wrong elements such as the food industry and those very annoying cartoony characters.

Mija is fine and the only good character in Okja. Lucy Mirando is too cartoony, but admittedly Tilda Swinton did a good job in the role per usual. Others are all forgettable with the exception of Jake Gyllenhaal who is memorable but in a bad way. I am sorry to say this but this is the first time that I honestly really disliked Jake in a film as his performance is ridiculous as is his character.

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Okja Movie Review

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Bong Joon-ho’s direction is also problematic as he wanted to include too many things here but failed miserably. I honestly found its message admirable, but its delivery had the subtlety of an earthquake. Honestly, any kid’s flick would be like this and maybe even better. That is how on-the-nose Okja is.

I loved the imagery, especially in the first act. Korean’s forests are simply beautiful and I really admired those landscapes as well as the pig’s design and effects, very well done. The film is definitely a visual feast for the eyes and it’s a shame that it was wasted on such a problematic script.

Okja is one of the most disappointing films of the year as it let me down significantly. Its premise had potential, the film is visually magnificent and it does have a good beginning and ending, but the entire middle part is frustratingly uneven, the film’s characters are ridiculously cartoony, the tone is just all over the place and the message is delivered in the most unsubtle manner possible. Such a frustrating movie.

My Rating – 3

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Kong: Skull Island (2017)

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

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Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

Kong: Skull Island is a 2017 monster film starring Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson and Brie Larson among others. It is a pretty solid, entertaining blockbuster.

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This planet doesn’t belong to us.

Ancient species owned this earth long before mankind.

I spent 30 years trying to prove the truth: monsters exist

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Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

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Its story is actually quite solid which I did not expect. It is a remake of the 1933 original, but the time period is changed to 1973 and it is obviously influenced in style by various Vietnam War movies. It can of course never be compared to the classic original, but I never expected it would come close and it is in the end pretty solid and fun in its own right so it is successful in my opinion.

It is fun because it is so adventurous. The plot is typical, but at least present and well executed. I loved the twist with John C. Reilly’s character and I absolutely loved his entire story, so well done and fascinating, not to mention moving. I now have to see 2014’s ‘Godzilla’ because this MonsterVerse piqued my interest to be honest. That is because its end-credits sequence is really well done and intriguing, but the movie stands on its own and isn’t too connected to other things to come which is why this is definitely the first successful movie universe to come after the MCU, at least for now.

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Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

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What I didn’t like about Kong: Skull Island is of course the character development which is so incredibly weak that it hurt the movie so much. I don’t know what is the point of having all these great actors, and surely this ensemble cast is amazing, if you’re not going to utilize on them properly. Only Reilly’s character is well developed and I really liked him with all of the others being so weak.

It is disappointing to see that Brie Larson did not get a better role after her unforgettable performance in ‘Room’. Her character here is very disappointing and forgettable. Jackson’s character is somewhat better, but still a far cry from his other roles. Tom Hiddleston did not get much to do as well and John Goodman only got one good scene. As I said, the characterization is so weak that it was really troublesome to me personally.

That is also because Kong: Skull Island is just way too frenetic in pace and it didn’t have enough time for either of its characters because the storyline is too ambitious and it wanted to check a lot of the boxes and introduce a lot of the creatures. Certainly that made the film very exciting and hugely entertaining, but rushed and the running time should have been longer for sure.

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Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

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I really liked the use of score as the famous songs from the early 70s were very utilized into the whole picture. The film is very well made technically and I absolutely adored its cinematography. I loved the special effects work here, certainly one of the year’s best. Kong himself looked excellent, I loved his fight with Skullcrawler whose role I did not understand as much, but the fight was great and I loved his final reigning scene. All of the creatures look magnificent and are fascinating here, but also have soul and are superbly used in action scenes. The effects here are the kind of effects I love – light and colorful and pleasing to the eye.

Even though it is way too frenetic in its pace and thus the characterization is mediocre and I did not get why they assembled this great ensemble cast if they were not going to utilize them properly, Kong: Skull Island is so incredibly entertaining to watch that it ultimately succeeds as a solid remake. I loved its adventurous tone, the action was great, the creatures were fascinating, the end-credits scene was intriguing and the film looks fantastic owing to amazing special effects.

My Rating – 3.5

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Blade (1998)

Blade Movie Review

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Blade Movie Review

Blade is a 1998 vampire superhero film starring Wesley Snipes. It is a fun, but typical superhero flick.

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I’m gonna be naughty!

I’m gonna be a naughty vampire god!

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Blade Movie Review

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The story here is your typical vampire storyline which wasn’t really well crafted or original in any way. I’ve seen this stuff many times before in different franchises, but I guess it was one of the first of its type as it was released all the way back in 1998. Still, it has no meaning to it, it has too many characters and it is a movie where you can just turn off your brain and enjoy the action on screen.

And the action is very good. The film is overly violent in my opinion and I have to say that the special effects are mediocre and some of it felt incredibly dated and unappealing, especially the gore. But the action is fun, the fights are all very well shot and executed and the film is entertaining for featuring a bunch of memorable set pieces and different fights.

Blade features Wesley Snipes at the height of his popularity and though he did sell his action scenes very well and he gave a good physical performance, his acting abilities are quite subpar. The same goes for the other actors. There are some memorable characters here, especially the villains, but the actors do not excel at playing them.

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Blade Movie Review

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So Blade is mostly a fun little film that serves its purpose if you turn off your brain and do not expect much apart from action and solid entertainment. It is two hours long, but mostly pretty engaging and entertaining and it does have solid cinematography and action that pleasantly reminded me of the comic book style. Really well done except for the effects. I wanted more from the superhero genre and less from the vampire one as I am not a fan of it, but it is a passable film which is good for a solid fun night and nothing more. Just as I expected from it to be honest. It fulfilled all my low expectations.

Blade is a fun film that features very good and entertaining action sequences and a good comic book style to it, but it has a regular vampire story, Wesley Snipes is memorable in the role but not a great actor and the VFX are admittedly very dated. It is an okay film that serves its purpose to entertain and nothing more than that.

My Rating – 3

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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World Movie Review……………………………………………….

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World Movie Review

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is a 2010 action comedy film directed by Edgar Wright and starring Michael Cera and Mary Elizabeth Winstead. It is such a fun movie.

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You made me swallow my gum!

That’s going to be in my digestive tract for seven years!

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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World Movie Review……………………………………………….

I love this movie. I now watched it again after five or so years and it really holds up. It is actually one of the most entertaining movies that I have ever seen, there is no doubt about it. Everything about it is fun and I was constantly having a great time. I know the story isn’t the greatest here, but it is a regular video game story and it works that way. I thought that it treated all of its character so well and that it was not only fun, but also moving and genuinely charming.

Where the movie shines is in its characters. The character development is excellent here and each character is highly memorable. Yes, there is no bad or forgettable character here which is a huge accomplishment having in mind its high set of them. Scott himself is really good and a typical, yet well done Michael Cera persona. He gave a pretty good performance here. Ramona is also really good and the two are great together. She is cool from start to finish.

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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World Movie Review……………………………………………….

Wallace as his gay best friend is surprisingly funny and I really liked their friendship. Knives is very sweet and the band members all got their moments. As for the evil exes, they are so well incorporated and I loved how well developed they are, yet so over-the-top and clear in their personalities and attributes. Very video game like. Patel was fine, but Lucas Lee is excellent and so funny and Todd Ingram is actually hilarious with his vegan powers. Roxy is terrific as well and I loved the inclusion of a lesbian character. This movie is surprisingly diverse both in race and sexuality. I expected much more from the Katayanagi twins, but Gideon is an excellent main villain and his scenes are all great.

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World succeeds as a comedy because of excellent dialogue and strong delivery by its actors. I laughed out loud quite a lot to be honest and some lines are so funny and so well used within the context of the scenes. But it succeeds as an action flick just as much, if not more. The action scenes here are spectacular and the kind of action I love most. Every fight is so well choreographed and wonderfully over-the-top that I enjoyed them immensely. The highlight was the fight with Roxy and of course Gideon.

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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World Movie Review……………………………………………….

As for its visual style, it is so great. It reminded of action/fighting video games instantly and I loved the use of sounds and exclamation points. The gadgets are also superb and I loved the use of 1-UP as well as the swords in the final fight. So well done and certainly like a video game and sometimes even a comic-book. This movie is sometimes too crazy and predictable, but I’ve had a blast watching it and it is one of the most shamefully underappreciated films of this decade.

I love Scott Pilgrim vs. the World so much. It is one of the most entertaining films I’ve ever seen. Its video game visual style is amazing and so well done, the fights are all a lot of fun and so well executed and the characters are diverse in race and sexuality and so well developed and each one is very memorable. The humor is also terrific and it made me laugh quite a lot. It truly is one of the most underrated movies of the decade.

My Rating – 4.5

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Romancing the Stone (1984)

Romancing the Stone Movie Review………………………………………………………..

Romancing the Stone Movie Review

Romancing the Stone is a 1984 action adventure romantic comedy film directed by Robert Zemeckis and starring Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner and Danny DeVito. It is a pleasant, fun flick.

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Joanie, you are now a world-class hopeless romantic.

No, hopeful. Hopeful romantic.

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Romancing the Stone Movie Review………………………………………………………..

I really enjoyed this movie. It has everything the Indiana Jones franchise was supposed to have – romance, adventure, charm and a lot of heart. The story itself is pretty solid for this type of movie. Simplistic and typical, yet certainly well crafted and with some memorable plot points and details. The film is very interesting in terms of its tone and genres. It is mostly a fun adventure flick, but it also has action in it and it is definitely a romantic comedy with humor and romance both being very accentuated.

I liked the characters and they were all very likable. It is interesting that this is one of the rare movies where even Michael Douglas I found to be likable as he is usually annoying to me. But he was very good and sympathetic here. Kathleen Turner is excellent and very charming and cute. And of course, as a big Danny DeVito fan, I liked seeing him here a lot and he was quite funny in a couple of scenes.

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Romancing the Stone Review………………………………………………………..

Romancing the Stone is very memorable in its third act. Yes, the action there is certainly overwhelming, but better than it was in the middle of the film and some of the set pieces are quite interesting. I liked the use of crocodiles quite a bit and the hand chopping sequence is truly dark for a supposed family picture.

I would have gone without the Columbian stereotypes and really the people and especially its representation as a poor and wild country felt very unnerving and dated. But the romance worked in my opinion as some of the scenes between the two were quite charming and even though the ending was overly happy, it was still endearing and satisfying in a typical eighties fashion.

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Romancing the Stone Movie Review………………………………………………………..

It is too much a product of its time, but it also benefits from it as they shot in real locations, Mexico I believe, which led to one fine looking movie with great cinematography and a lot of memorable shots and imagery. The direction from Robert Zemeckis is strong and I think this is one of his earliest movies and he showed great talent and he did deliver with such a strong directorial career. The pacing is somewhat problematic and the movie isn’t always as entertaining as it should have been, but it is always endearing and wonderful to watch plus it is surprisingly well crafted and made for a blockbuster. I liked it a lot and it is one of the best blockbusters of its time and one fine adventurous entertainment.

Romancing the Stone has its flaws such as some stereotypes, sometimes overwhelming action and a somewhat typical and predictable story, but the film is so adventurous and charming with quite likable Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner, endearing romance, some very memorable set pieces and shots and a genuinely well crafted, intriguing plot.

My Rating – 4

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Rogue One (2016)

Rogue One Movie Review…………………………………………………

Rogue One Movie Review

Rogue One is a 2016 science fiction action film directed by Gareth Edwards and starring Felicity Jones, Diego Luna and Donnie Yen among others. It is the first film in the Star Wars anthology series and is overall very disappointing.

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I’m one with the Force, and the Force is with me.

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Rogue One Movie Review…………………………………………………

It follows Jyn Erso, the daughter of a man who designed the Death Star, and her quest to retrieve his plans for destroying it. Now, the story itself is the problem here as it is overly simplistic and of course it demanded so much action which we unfortunately got in abundance. The story is not only overly simplistic, but sometimes even quite weakly crafted and not to mention very slim as a whole. The action comes first in this movie and that was a big disappointment.

Now I really liked the first half of Rogue One. Actually, I loved it and I’ve had such a fun time watching it. It was not only entertaining, but also very well made, sometimes even funny and genuinely adventurous and involving. But that all changed in the second half which became everything but. Suddenly the story was sidetracked for action and it was non-stop action after action to the point that I became honestly very bored with the whole affair. It was overloud, overly bombastic and almost seeming like a video game. There is way too much war in it.

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Rogue One Movie Review…………………………………………………

Let’s talk about the characters. As a team, I really liked them and in fact, they served great as a team and the dynamic was excellent. However, each of them fails individually as none of them feels like a well developed, real individual, but rather as shallow figure that serves to the story instead of the other way around.

Jyn Erso isn’t as annoying as she was in the trailer, but she was still quite weakly developed and forgettable. Her becoming a leader of the rebellion really wasn’t well handled and it felt rushed. Cassian had his moments, but was overall not memorable. Bodhi and Baze are both very underutilized and Saw Gerrera was very problematic. His relationship with Erso was important here as it was accentuated a lot, but here you have a great example of Hollywood failing at emotion. You have a scene with the two of them reuniting and crying and it was all supposed to be very emotional, but I was just never moved at all because I don’t know these people as the film failed to establish them as proper human beings and not just as toys that serve the story.

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Rogue One Movie Review…………………………………………………

The villains I found to be really good and some were quite menacing and strong. Vader was very well used in his two sequences and Erso’s father had some excellent moments too. But I was so disappointed with their treatment of Chirrut. Here they got a really cool, badass character and they just used his action skills in a couple of scenes and that’s it. Tremendously disappointing. Really the characterization is super weak here which is my major gripe with the movie and the reason why ‘The Force Awakens’ was a better film.

The acting is, on the other hand, very strong. This was obviously Political Correctness 101 as there isn’t a single white man in the team, but that didn’t bother me, it only bothered me that they were weak as characters. But the actors did a really good job. Felicity Jones is quite good, although her American accent isn’t the greatest and is sometimes noticeable. Mads Mikkelsen and Forest Whitaker sold their emotional scenes with very good performances and of course the presence of Donnie Yen is always welcome.

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Rogue One Movie Review…………………………………………………

Donnie Yen is actually quite funny in this movie as is K-2SO. He is a very solid robot who is actually one of the series’ best – very funny and very likable. But unfortunately, only those two provided the humor and just rarely. The film was otherwise too serious. Now the action is overwhelming, but is actually very well executed undoubtedly. And of course the special effects are terrific. This is one of the year’s best looking movies and everything looks great from the scenery to the weapons to even the CGI of some of the characters. It was crazy to me that Tarkin was a giant effect and not a real person as the actor had died a long time ago. Really groundbreaking effects right there. The sound effects are too loud, but the score is really good and its theme that was repeated throughout was actually great.

The special effects are excellent, the score is terrific and the acting is very good in Rogue One as is its first half which is so great, sometimes even funny and genuinely entertaining and well made, but the second half is so weak with non-stop action after action that bored me to death. But the reason why ‘The Force Awakens’ was better lies in the characters as this movie has surprisingly weak character development and here you have a textbook example of where Hollywood usually fails – you have these big emotional scenes and you are supposed to be moved, but I just wasn’t as I don’t know these people as they aren’t developed as genuine human beings but rather as tools in service to the story. So disappointing.

My Rating – 3.5

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Star Trek Beyond (2016)

Star Trek Beyond Review…………………………………………………………….

Star Trek Beyond Movie Review

Star Trek Beyond is a 2016 science fiction action film directed by Justin Lin and starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto and Idris Elba among others. It is an immensely disappointing entry.

The reason why this film failed in my opinion has to lie in its approach, execution and direction. This is basically an action film instead of being a nice science fiction adventure flick. The action is so overwhelming here that it basically overtakes the entire movie and what more would you expect from Justin Lin who is such a horrible director of that awful Fast and Furious franchise. This film is basically a blockbuster in its worst tendencies and I just don’t find that appealing at all.

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To use a parlance with which you would be familiar,

Doctor, I have just confirmed that theory to be horseshit

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Star Trek Beyond Review…………………………………………………………….

The plot itself is awfully simplistic. The movie was saved by its third act, mostly just the ending in which they put at least some emotion in and at least some of the questions were answered. The villain was solid and the twist was fine, but his entire backstory and goal was incredibly familiar as is the entire storyline. The biggest problem in terms of storytelling is that the movie just moves through the motions and the action drives the movie instead of a plot or strong characterization and goals. The lack of backstories to most of the characters was immensely frustrating as well.

Spock is solid, but him being romantically involved here was odd. Kirk is solid, albeit not as memorable as this time around. Jaylah is a very problematic character who is very prominent, but remained incredibly thin. Chekov is forgettable, but Scottie is likable as always and Simon Pegg is good in this role. All of the actors did a perfectly fine job in their roles.

Star Trek Beyond is a technically serviceable movie with very good special effects and some excellent scenery. The movie really has some great and memorable alien landscapes, but it is such a shame that those are only small moments and we never really got to explore this planet leading to a film that is a failure as an adventure.

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Star Trek Beyond Review…………………………………………………………….

Some of the hand combat fights were entertaining, but most of the other action sequences were very forgettable and never particularly exciting. And there lies the film’s biggest weakness. When you’ve got a film that is this obsessed with action, then the action in it has to not only strong, but exceptional. And it just never was this time around. Couple that with a very weak plot and you’ve got the weakest Star Trek movie in this new franchise thus far.

Star Trek Beyond has good special effects, fine performances, a solid twist and overall fine conclusion, but the film is overwhelmed with action that it just becomes one big tired and meaningless affair. The plot is overly simple and the film just goes through the motions, the goals of the characters and the backstories are sorely lacking and the film is frenetic to the point of being frustrating. Consequently, it is an immense disappointment and the weakest entry in this new series so far.

My Rating – 3

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Kung Fu Panda 3 (2016)

2 of 905 Print all In new window Kung Fu Panda 3 Review

Kung Fu Panda 3 Movie Review

 

Kung Fu Panda 3 is a 2016 animated action comedy film produced by DreamWorks Animation and it is the third entry in the franchise. It is a flawed, but definitely solid addition.

If you only do what you can do,

you’ll never be better than what you are

Po finally meets his father and has to travel to the panda village in order to prepare to fight the new villain. Overall, this is a solid film in terms of storytelling. I loved the introduction of Po’s father as that led to such a great character development of Mr. Ping in particular. I loved that father dynamic and it is great that this movie has a main character who has two fathers as it presents that development in an honest, very respectable manner.

 Kung Fu Panda 3 Review

Another thing that I liked is the introduction of the panda village as that was visually arresting and so much fun. And even though they focused too much on the laziness character trait of the pandas, that was still funny to watch. I also liked the flashbacks in this movie as they were used sparingly and properly. And the ending is sweet, but the whole third act felt dragging to me as the action was overwhelming. But thankfully, the action wasn’t that present in its first two acts.

Let’s talk about the characters. Po is obnoxious here. Wow, he annoyed the hell out of me. I strongly dislike this character, but here he was even more annoying than in the previous two installments. He really ruined this movie for me. Li Shan on the other hand is pretty good and I liked his character and the relationship between the two quite a bit. As I said before, Mr. Ping continues to be such a wonderful character and I really loved him this time again. His problem here is relatable and he is such an important character.

 Kung Fu Panda 3 Review

As for the Furious Five members, they are once again underused, but I have to say that this is the best use of Tigress yet as she is pretty likable this time around. Crane is also solid and Mantis is pretty funny in some moments. Oogway is pretty well utilized in the story and I really enjoyed that scene with him and Po near the end as it was visually powerful and a great plot progression. Master Shifu was a bit too hip this time around, but he was still quite solid. As for Kai, I don’t know what to think about this guy. On the one hand, he is once again a typical Kung Fu Panda villain who is weak, silly and forgettable, but on the other hand, he was genuinely funny from time to time and that makes him much more bearable.

The animation in Kung Fu Panda 3 is expectedly superb and just breathtaking to witness. I continue to respect this franchise for having such a strong artistic voice and this entry is no exception. Everything here looks great, from the characters to the imagery to the interiors. The natural landscapes are naturally the highlights as there are multiple scenes here that are wallpaper worthy how beautiful they look. The panda village scenery is beautiful and the film again uses traditional animation in a great way with some pretty artistic scenes and I only wish that there was more of it.

Kung Fu Panda 3 is an action comedy so let’s talk about those two important aspects. The action was incredibly disappointing as it was overwhelming later on and mostly too silly throughout the whole running time. Kai had some great moments himself as is usually the case with villains when they are on their own in this franchise, but otherwise the film fails as an action flick in my opinion.

Kung Fu Panda 3

Whereas it fails on action grounds, it thoroughly succeeds in the comedy sphere as the humor here is stupendously good. I laughed more than a couple of times and that took me by surprise as I didn’t find the previous two entries all that funny. Mantis is pretty funny, the pandas had some great moments and the highlight is of course Kai and how nobody knows who he is. Those moments were absolutely hilarious and such a great parody.

J.K. Simmons is the new addition to the cast and he did a really good job in the role of Kai and he is probably the highlight here. But all of the others are again pretty good with Bryan Cranston also being a good addition. Kung Fu Panda 3 is again unfortunate in its use of silly humor in its action scenes and it again ended up being ridiculous and too childish when it could have easily been darker and awesome had it chosen to be that way. That was so frustrating and a continual pet peeve of mine in regards to this franchise.

 Kung Fu Panda 3 Review

The film is tonally uneven and it is solidly paced, but overlong and dragging in its third act. The emotion is there and the script is mostly solid. The dialogue bothered me as it was too simplistic and pandering to the younger audience. It is the worst dialogue thus far in the franchise. But its message is well utilized, the score is solid and its visuals are splendid. It is of course much weaker than’ Kung Fu Panda‘, but it is pretty much on par with ‘Kung Fu Panda 2‘ and that is quite an achievement.

Kung Fu Panda 3 is such a solid third entry in the franchise with once again breathtaking animation, a great message, some superb character interactions, quite solid plot and stupendous humor with some hilarious lines, but the action is disappointing and overwhelming in its third act, Po is more obnoxious here than ever before and the film is again too silly. It is flawed, but overall quite solid for a third film.

My Rating – 3.5

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Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (2015)

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation

Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation Movie Review

Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation is a 2015 action spy film directed by Christopher McQuarrie and starring Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Rebecca Ferguson and Simon Pegg. It is easily the best entry in the entire franchise.

This movie surprised me on so many levels. First of all, it is so admirable that a franchise can become better and better as it progresses instead of being the other way around which is more usual. The first and the second movie were quite bad, the third one was okay, ‘Ghost Protocol‘ was pretty solid and Rogue Nation is the only one that is clearly quite good and the most entertaining of the bunch as well. The story here is quite solid and the character interactions are once again pretty good. The characters are mostly pretty good with the newly introduced Ilsa Faust being the highlight of the movie and the only memorable female character in this entire series. She is so good and such a complex and well realized character.

The acting is pretty good. Tom Cruise is solid and of course respectable in his action stunts, but he and his character is unfortunately overshadowed here by Ferguson. Ethan Hunt has always been such a bore, but Ilsa is not and Rebecca Ferguson is so good in her role, delivering in dialogue as well as in action sequences. And Simon Pegg continues to be one of the highlights in this franchise as he is so incredibly likable. Jeremy Renner is also pretty good, albeit underused. But the relationship between Brandt and Hunt I really liked and especially their facial expressions towards each other which are so endearing and the highlights in this movie when humor is concerned. I loved that the we finally got a lightweight entry in this usually dull and serious series. That was a lot of fun.

Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation has its problems mainly the pacing which is problematic and the film is overlong. Some scenes are unnecessarily long and some are quite boring. Also, there are many typical action scenes here as well. Ethan Hunt is again so incredibly boring and the villain in this movie is forgettable and not particularly well utilized.

But the action is very good and the fights in particular were some of the best in the franchise as they were so thrilling to watch and so well executed. The tone is also good as is the direction and acting. I liked the score as well, but the music was admittedly overloud at some points. The use of various locations brought a lot of eye candy here with London, Vienna and Casablanca all being really well utilized and beautiful to watch. It is a fun and very entertaining and even charming movie that even has some classy feel to it which was so refreshing to witness. It is undoubtedly the finest entry in the franchise and I respect the filmmakers for managing to make such a good and fun fifth film in a mostly dull and weak series.

Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation has its problems which are some typical action scenes, still boring Ethan Hunt, some too prolonged sequences and a weak villain, but it has such well executed action sequences, an excellent female character in Ilsa Faust and such a charming feel to it that it is undoubtedly the finest entry in the franchise which is so admirable and it is not just the only Mission Impossible film that is quite good, but also the only one that is immensely entertaining as well.

My Rating – 4

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