Meet the Robinsons (2007)

Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

…………………………………………………

Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

Meet the Robinsons is a 2007 animated science fiction comedy film which is the 47th Disney animated feature. It is such a solid, underrated Disney flick.

………………………………………………….

Why is your dog wearing glasses?

Oh, because his insurance won’t pay for contacts

………………………………………………….

Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

………………………………………………….

I really like this movie and it is actually one of the better Disney films from their Second Dark Age. It is definitely underrated, but I can see why some people may not like it and it definitely isn’t the most memorable film out there. But despite its structural problems, the story remains its biggest strength.

Yes, Disney movies usually have stronger characters or music than the plot, but this time around it is most certainly the opposite case. This is probably the best that the company did regarding the future as I prefer it over ‘Treasure Planet’ honestly. It is a darn good time travel flick that utilizes on its premise so well and it never became a retread of ‘Back to the Future’ that it easily could have become. It is its own thing.

I liked the first act as it introduces you to its story and main characters well. And of course the third act is where the movie absolutely shines as it is filled with such a wonderful family drama so well executed. The highlights are what they did with the villain, the scene at the orphanage which was emotional and of course the sky writing scene is beautiful. I adored that ending with one of my favorite Disney songs playing in the background and when they showed Walt’s quote about moving forward afterwards, well, it just made my day and I was so emotional.

………………………………………………….

Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

………………………………………………….

But that second act is so problematic that it seriously affected the movie and hurt it from being quite good to just solid. I am talking about the characters. They are problematic in this movie and the Robinson family are a lovely bunch and the film has a lot of heart. However, they are too eccentric. I loved some of it, but the movie tried too hard that eccentricity card to the point of being overwhelming. And the family has so many members that it was hard keeping up and it seriously affected an otherwise solid character development.

Let’s talk about that family. The frogs are ridiculous and I just could not get past that no matter how cute they were. They felt tacked in on the movie needlessly. The various uncles were forgettable and most of the men in the family were not memorable at all. The robot himself is much less annoying than B. E. N. from ‘Treasure Planet’, but that is because he was less used and not because he was anything special to begin with.

………………………………………………….

Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

………………………………………………….

Lucille and Bud are the only really memorable members of the family and I loved both of them, so quirky and full of heart. And the wife also had her moments, but was your typical cartoon wife in some ways. But let’s talk about the big three characters: Wilbur, Lewis and the villain. Wilbur is very good and although somewhat typical, I loved his relationship with Lewis and that brotherly/fatherly relationship was very interesting.

Lewis is called Cornelius in the future and I really enjoyed that the movie did not employ that usual bullcrap with not supposed to be meeting yourself in the future or past and actually had the two of them meet. A very rewarding scene emotionally. Lewis is a good protagonist, not great, but good for who they were trying to portray and is better than most modern Disney main characters.

The Bowler Hat Guy is the very best character that Meet the Robinsons has to offer by far. At first I was slightly annoyed by his comedic presence, but still his design and voice were quite interesting and he was cartoony, but also felt like a human being in the end. Yes, he isn’t a villain and is in the end explained that he is Goob in the past and I loved that twist, so well done. Lewis helping him eventually was wonderful and I loved how he genuinely felt sorry for what he did. An excellent story for him and a great characterization.

………………………………………………….

Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

………………………………………………….

The animation is such a great improvement over ‘Chicken Little’ that it was honestly baffling to witness. It still needed some work in the backgrounds that honestly looked poor for the most part, but I really enjoyed its colorful approach and the designs of the characters are quirky and quite authentic in their own right. This future was fun over serious, bright over dark, imaginative over realistic and I honestly loved it, especially the buildings and the transportation.

Meet the Robinsons has just a couple of songs in it as it isn’t a musical. Another Believer is tonally in line with the movie’s feel itself, but I just did not enjoy it that much as it is forgettable and almost too modern. But Little Wonders is just, well, wondrous! A very underrated song that is the best of this era for the studio, it wonderfully accompanies that emotional ending and is so well sung by Rob Thomas and although catchy, it is more moving and poignant in its approach with such heartfelt lyrics.

………………………………………………….

Meet the Robinsons Movie Review

………………………………………………….

The film features a surprisingly strong humor and it is the funniest Disney has been since ‘The Emperor’s New Groove’. Some of the lines from Bud as well as the line about T-Rex’s small hands were just hilarious and I was honestly caught off-guard at how funny some moments were. The film is weakly paced and so incredibly rushed as it needed a much bigger runtime to tell this rich story. But overall it is one of Disney’s most underrated and most endearing modern efforts.

It is way too rushed in its pace and that second act is enormously chaotic to the point of hurting the movie tremendously as it has way too much energy and way too many characters in it, but Meet the Robinsons is otherwise a very solid, underrated Disney film with an animation that is a big improvement over their last effort, one great song, very good main characters and a superb “villain” and above all an original, so well crafted and heartfelt story with a surprising amount of wonderful humor in it.

My Rating – 3.5

………………………………………………….

Share

Bingo Crosbyana (1936)

Bingo Crosbyana ReviewBingo Crosbyana Review

Bingo Crosbyana is a 1936 animated short film from the Merry Melodies series. It is such a flawed flick.

Yes, I really did not enjoy the first half of Bingo Crosbyana. Bingo Crosby himself sued Warner Brothers for such a bad portrayal and I honestly have to agree as he is really a cowardly womanizer and nothing more than that here. I at first disliked how the movie was incredibly sexist with the words “the weak sex” repeated throughout.

But thankfully it ended on such a high note with punishing Bingo for cowardly behavior. It would have been a much better ending if the girls did that instead of the boyfriends and thus the movie remains sexist, but still I liked that ending and it is the only memorable scene in an otherwise quite frustrating movie. At least the animation and that song are quite good.

Bingo Crosbyana is frustrating in its sexist approach and only the ending is memorable.

My Rating – 3.4

Share

Aliens (1986)

Aliens Movie Review

…………………………………………………

Aliens Movie Review

Aliens is a 1986 science fiction action horror film directed by James Cameron and starring Sigourney Weaver. It is a good, but far from great sequel.

………………………………………………….

Get away from her, you bitch!

………………………………………………….

Aliens Movie Review

………………………………………………….

First, I’ll state the positives. I really liked the film’s emotional approach. It made the movie quite relatable and very touching in certain scenes. The choice to basically give Ripley a new daughter after she’d lost her own really paid off in terms of characterization and emotion. Ripley here is at her best and this is one of the best action heroes of all time as she is badass, but also human evidenced by her post-traumatic stress disorder and at first unwillingness to go back.

Sigourney Weaver killed it here and entirely deserved her Oscar nomination. She truly became Ripley and cemented her status as a strong action heroine in the process, in my opinion the strongest one ever. I really liked Newt as she’s such a cute, yet also brave and capable kid and the interactions between the two were wonderful.

Vasquez is underdeveloped, but quite funny at times and quite memorable as this butch private. I really liked how they made Bishop a hero now as Ash was the villain in ‘Alien’ and having the android be the villain again would have been repetitive. But Burke just isn’t all that compelling as the new villain, though solid for sure.

………………………………………………….

Aliens Movie Review

………………………………………………….

There are a lot of memorable scenes to be had in Aliens. I naturally loved the line “Get away from her, you bitch!” That scene stole the show and Weaver’s delivery is priceless. I also really liked the portrayal of the queen, very memorable and it led to more world building for the series and was honestly a natural choice given the creature’s design and reproduction.

So Aliens is a good film, very good indeed. But what is it that leads to it not being great? Well, in short the answer is two words – James Cameron. Let me explain. I have never been a fan of this director and this movie really cements that feeling for me. I love the Alien franchise and this movie would have been great with any other director, but Cameron brought his typical approach to it and ruined it in my opinion.

I am talking about the action. It is just overwhelming. The choice to turn an Alien film into action and not horror film was not a particularly good one in the first place and the execution is even worse. There are some great action set pieces here, for sure. But whereas the original film was so calm and thus all the more effective, this one is overly bombastic and the second half is just ridiculously fast paced and filled with spectacle. It definitely ruined the suspense and enjoyment for me.

………………………………………………….

Aliens Movie Review

………………………………………………….

I also found its first half a bit too long and slow. It was prolonged in order to strengthen the character development, but they weren’t all that successful with it given that we only have a couple of well developed, strong characters here. The ending is also ridiculously rehashed from the first film. The editing is surely not the greatest and I don’t know why the Academy nominated it. As for its other six nominations, they are all pretty much deserved as the effects are definitely terrific, but I thought the score wasn’t as memorable this time around.

It seems that Mr. Cameron thought that bigger is better evidenced by this film’s overabundance of action scenes whereas the original was so wonderfully restrained in that department. And that is why I honestly cannot comprehend how anyone could deem Aliens to be better than Alien. It does have an excellent performance from Sigourney Weaver and Ripley here is at her strongest, I love Newt and their relationship brought a lot of heart to the film which also features some memorable scenes and funny lines. It is a good film, but it just never reached the greatness that its predecessor reached and Cameron is to blame of course.

My Rating – 4

………………………………………………….

Share

Fish Tales (1936)

Fish Tales ReviewFish Tales Review

Fish Tales is a 1936 animated short film from the Looney Tunes series. It is a solid, but flawed movie.

Porky Pig is on a boating and fishing trip, but when he falls asleep, he dreams that a big fish is hunting him for dinner. This is a regular setup for a cartoon and it lacks originality for that matter. The setting is very well utilized, but some things were undercooked and did not make sense and the transition from reality to dream and backwards wasn’t the best in execution.

I liked Porky as he’s great as usual. The animation is pretty good here and the score is also solid. The film has an interesting live-action approach to its cinematography and it was weird at first when he drove the boat, but afterwards I began to dig it, especially in the scene where he was trapped, really well filmed. The film is technically quite good, but I wish that the story was stronger.

Fish Tales has very good cinematography and animation, but a rather typical and familiar plot.

My Rating – 3.7

Share

Tillie’s Punctured Romance (1914)

Tillie's Punctured Romance Movie Review

…………………………………………………

Tilly’s Punctured Romance Movie Review

Tillie’s Punctured Romance is a 1914 silent comedy film directed by Mack Sennett and starring Marie Dressler, Mabel Normand and Charlie Chaplin. It is such a good, underrated movie.

………………………………………………….

He ain’t no good to neither of us

………………………………………………….

Tillie's Punctured Romance Movie Review

………………………………………………….

The movie is about a fat lady who inherits a lot of money from her supposedly dead uncle and Charlie is after that money and marries her with his girlfriend opposing to it and everything leads to a big scene. Now the movie is great, especially for its time, as it portrayed two very strong, admirable female characters and for 1914 this should be respected.

The film ends with the two women befriending each other and realizing that they don’t need Charlie who was awful to both of them. That final moment is unforgettable in its simplicity and big heart and it made the movie a classic for me.

It is weird seeing Charlie Chaplin in such a villainous role, very weird actually. But he still did a very good job per usual and this is his first feature effort and he showed how great he was instantly. But Mabel Normand is even more memorable and she was very charming and likable here.

But of course Marie Dressler stole the show from both of them. I loved her in ‘Anna Christie’ which I’ve watched pretty recently, but it was great seeing her in a silent movie which were her roots and she absolutely killed it in this role. Her physical comedy and gags were the best of the three and she is easily the funniest and most charismatic person here. The fact that she stole the show from Chaplin himself really says a lot about her enormous talents.

………………………………………………….

Tillie's Punctured Romance Movie Review

………………………………………………….

Tillie’s Punctured Romance is the world’s first feature comedy and it aged so well. It was shocking to see such a weak response to the movie on Rotten Tomatoes when I myself really enjoyed it and it is one of the period’s better films. Definitely underrated and should be watched and respected more by today’s audiences.

Now yes, the film relies too much on slapstick comedy, more specifically on kicking people in the butt. That was overplayed for laughs here and was frankly a bit annoying at times. However, where the film shines is in its charming and very memorable characters and a great scenario solidly played for laughs in many scenes.

The highlights are the first meeting of Tillie and Charlie, I loved seeing a theatre going experience of the 1910s and of course the ending made the movie for me. Tillie has had enough and she starts shooting people at the party at the mansion and afterwards the action is taken to the docks and we witness the arrival of the Keystone Cops.

………………………………………………….

Tillie's Punctured Romance Movie Review

………………………………………………….

They are great and everyone is great here, but Tillie stole the show naturally and I loved her crazy shooting everyone and everywhere. There is some great action to be had here with the cars and this entire scenario was so perfectly executed that it was worth waiting for the entire film which is so well edited and directed for the most part, but excels because of its action and acting.

Tillie’s Punctured Romance is the world’s first feature comedy and it holds up so well and is very underrated. The story and scenario are so well played for laughs and the ending is glorious in its action spectacle and with such a wonderful final scene. Its female characters are admirable for its time and seeing Chaplin in the villainous role was quite interesting. The dynamic between the actors is great and Marie Dressler excelled in portraying this memorable, funny protagonist.

My Rating – 4.5

………………………………………………….

Share

Frank Film (1973)

Frank Film ReviewFrank Film Review

Frank Film is a 1973 Oscar-winning animated short that is very bad.

The directors Frank and Caroline Mouris assembled a bunch of unrelated images and he narrated the film twice, once by explaining the images and the second time relating them to a story. And he put both of those narrations together at once. It is an original technique, but not everything that is original is great and this movie is a fine example of that.

The animation is mediocre and annoying, the images move too fast, way too fast to be recognized, and everything is blurry and dull looking. But the two narrations make the movie impossible to comprehend. I could not hear 80 per cent of it correctly and I do not know how anyone can. It is a stupid, pretentious film that maybe could have been interesting if it wasn’t executed simultaneously, but this way it is one of the worst Oscar-winning animated shorts of all time.

Frank Film did not deserve its Oscar and it’s a travesty that it got it. This original approach to filmmaking is just stupid and it made the movie incomprehensible.

My Rating – 2

Share

Hunter x Hunter (Chimera Ant arc) Season 5 (2013)

Hunter x Hunter (Chimera Ant arc) Season 5 Review

………………………………………………….

Hunter x Hunter (Chimera Ant arc) Season 5 Review

The fifth season of Hunter x Hunter is another disappointing one and I am truly frustrated with this anime.

………………………………………………….

Violence is the greatest power of the world!

………………………………………………….

Hunter x Hunter (Chimera Ant arc) Season 5 Review

………………………………………………….

Yes, this is the new low for the series and what was once one of the greatest anime shows ever in my opinion is now reduced to a regular anime and nothing more than that. I have never seen a bigger steep down for any other show than this one, I am serious.

Yes, Dragon Ball is also famous for being overly reliant on action scenes and long fights, but Chimera Ant arc is even worse than that show, much worse in my opinion as it has 61 episodes which is just too much for any story and this one started off great and I was intrigued with the Chimeras, but then it reduced to fight after fight and more needless complications and I honestly lost interest.

Chimera Ant arc is definitely the most horrific and gruesome of any arcs in Hunter x Hunter which is saying something. I liked its horror approach quite a bit actually. I really admired the animation and the character design of the villains, very creative and diverse in a lot of species. And the score was solid.

………………………………………………….

Hunter x Hunter (Chimera Ant arc) Season 5 Review

………………………………………………….

But the action itself was disappointing and not only prolonged, but also not all that interesting to me personally. The character moments came too far and few in between and even Gon and Killua were not as great here. Netero is interesting and the villain is great, but watching him play chess and games was basically a filler and this arc was too much build up and not enough great conclusion.

In the end, this fifth season of Hunter x Hunter is the weakest thus far with great animation, interesting villains and excellent horror approach to it, but the execution with too much action was disappointing and not particularly engaging and the arc is too long, complicated and ultimately kind of dull. Very disappointing.

Worst Episodes: A False Rage, Defeat and Dignity and Breakdown and Awakening.

Best Episodes: Very Rapid Reproduction, Evil and Terrible and Kite and Slots.

My Rating – 3.5

………………………………………………….

Share

Timecrimes (2007)

Timecrimes Movie Review

…………………………………………………

Timecrimes Movie Review

Timecrimes is a 2007 Spanish science fiction thriller film directed by Nacho Vigalondo. It is one of the best sci-fi films of the decade.

………………………………………………….

Because Hector 3 told me

………………………………………………….

Timecrimes Movie Review

………………………………………………….

I have been seeing this title for quite some time on best sci-fi movies lists and I was intrigued and set out to find out for myself whether or not its status is warranted. And oh boy, did it thrill me! This has to be one of the best science fiction films of the 2000s, if not of all time, as it is just that good.

It is a great example of how fantastic an indie, small-budget sci-fi can be. This movie has only one big set which is the time machine and other than that, it has nothing and it uses its forest setting and creepy bandaged look to great, creepy effects. It does have some strong horror elements, but it is above all else a terrific thriller that can keep you on the edge of your seat almost from start to finish.

Timecrimes has great thrills, but it also features a terrific time travel storyline and it is probably the ultimate time travel movie that American films should take notice of. I did admittedly have trouble in its third act understanding the film, but once I did, it was brilliant to behold. The twist with Hector 2 is breathtaking, but the twist with Hector 3 makes it all the more complicated and ultimately admirable.

………………………………………………….

Timecrimes Movie Review

………………………………………………….

It is admirable because the film is fueled with a marvelous, unprecedented attention to detail and I personally think that it made no mistake whatsoever. This premise is extremely difficult to execute, but its thorough and phenomenally thought out execution made all the difference. It is the kind of movie that you should watch extremely carefully and you should not take your eyes off of it for a single second or you’d miss an important detail or two.

That makes it especially prone to more viewings and surely I can’t wait to watch it again. Its structure means that it rewards us the viewers for paying attention as when the plot starts to repeat for the second and eventually even the third time your patience is rewarded appropriately.

Hector makes for a fine protagonist and I liked the scientist as well, played by Nacho Vigalondo himself who directed this movie with style in abundance. He is the reason why Timecrimes is such a big success as his direction is so strong and the film’s editing is absolutely spectacular. I just wish that the women in the film weren’t as helpless and the woman in the forest definitely had too cruel of a fate.

………………………………………………….

Timecrimes Movie Review

………………………………………………….

The aforementioned forest is beautifully utilized and it was the perfect setting for this movie and I liked how it used sound to great creepy effect. The score is fantastic and very disturbing and it accompanies those horror scenes so well. The film is truly a one of a kind experience and it gives time travel flicks a great name, that’s for sure. It is also one of the better Spanish movies I’ve seen.

Nacho Vigalondo directed Timecrimes superbly and he is the one responsible for its greatness the most. The editing is phenomenal and the film is a textbook example of how great small-budget sci-fi can be as it uses its setting, high-concept and disturbing score to great effect. It has its great horror scenes, but it is above all a terrific thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat throughout its running time. It is the ultimate time travel movie which should be watched extremely closely as it is filled with an incredible amount of detail and the fact that the film’s execution is so well thought out makes it an especially rewarding experience leading to one the genre’s best films of the 2000s.

My Rating – 4.5

………………………………………………….

Share

I’d Love to Take Orders from You (1936)

I'd Love to Take Orders from You ReviewI’d Love to Take Orders from You Review

I’d Love to Take Orders from You a 1936 animated short film from the Merry Melodies series. It is a pretty endearing flick.

In this short we follow a scarecrow family. The father scares the crows while the son wants to become a big scarecrow himself. He sets out to scare the crow who scares and chases him until his father saves him and plays a joke on him. This is all charming family stuff executed really well and with some solid characterization.

But the humor is lacking and the film is rather typical and extremely predictable, especially in its very obvious ending. The film is too safe and although highly likable, it is still regular fare. The score is also not great, but the animation is definitely slick with great designs and pleasing colors.

I’d Love to Take Orders from You is definitely too safe, but highly likable and so well animated.

My Rating – 3.9

Share

Sleight (2017)

Sleight Movie Review

…………………………………………………

Sleight Movie Review

Sleight is a 2017 fantasy drama film starring Jacob Latimore. It is an okay, but very disappointing indie flick.

………………………………………………….

So, she’s a lot cooler than you?

………………………………………………….

Sleight Movie Review

………………………………………………….

Its plot actually had some potential and is rather interesting. It mixes drama with fantasy elements and is basically a drug movie but with a magical twist as its protagonist is a magician. It is implied that his powers are real at the end. I liked those magical elements, but they were sorely underutilized and ultimately disappointing in context to the whole movie despite having some memorable moments.

And its drug part is as typical and as annoying as you would come to expect from “black people selling drugs in order to support a family member” premise. Entirely unoriginal and only the magical element was new and exciting but it also fell through unfortunately.

Jacob Latimore is memorable in the role and quite good and all of the actors did a solid job, but the characters themselves are quite boring and typical stereotypes and nobody managed to stick through. And the direction by its new director isn’t the greatest as expected.

Sleight is well edited and paced and it is not boring and its running time is manageable, but should have been used for better things as the film was sometimes repetitive and I also thought that some scenes and plot progressions felt unrealistic and the film was not brutal enough which is weird to say coming from a guy who hates violence, but here the film was too non-violent given the premise.

………………………………………………….

Sleight Movie Review

………………………………………………….

I felt like that throughout the whole time watching the movie and the stakes were never as high as they needed to have been. There are some memorable scenes here such as all those magical moments, but most of it was forgettable and uninspired leading to one of the weaker films of the year and one of the more disappointing indie films.

Sleight is well acted and quite interesting in its premise, but underutilized and familiar in its execution with uninspired drama elements, dull and forgettable characters and too many typical scenes. A disappointing indie flick.

My Rating – 3

………………………………………………….

Share