Movie Discussion: Jango’s head

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Hello there, ladies and gentlemen! And welcome back to Movie Discussions, the series where I discuss things in movies… mostly pretty minor things that no one really cares about, but whatever. So yeah… let’s talk “Star Wars”. Spoilers coming up for “Episode II”, but you have all seen it even though it’s shit.

Ever since “Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones” got released, people have been asking “What the fuck, George Lucas?”. But they’ve also been asking “Why doesn’t Jango’s head fall out of the helmet?”. To recap, there’s a huge and messy battle involving droids, Jedi, weird alien creatures, and Jango Fett (Temuera Morrison). He starts shooting at Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson) who of course blocks every blaster shot. And then *WHAM!*, Jango gets his head cut off. And a while later when the battle is over, the young boy version of Boba Fett (Daniel Logan) walks over to the helmet of his bounty hunter father, picks it up, and holds it to his own head in sorrow. And this is where people wonder why the hell Jango’s head doesn’t drop out of the helmet. Firstly, it would really ruin the intended mood of the scene. And secondly, I think I might have figured out why it doesn’t just plop out.

Skip to 0:39 for decapitation.

Crazy fight, blaster shots being blocked, *WHAM!*. In the video we immediately see how the helmeted head flies off of Jango’s shoulders. Then we have the shot of the helmet crashing onto the ground. Now, if you look closely during that shot (pause if you have to, or simply slow down the speed of it) you will be able to notice two shadows, both about the same size. My theory is that one of the shadows is the helmet, and the other is the head getting flung even further. This would explain why there is no head dropping out of the helmet when Boba picks it up. *WHAM!*, helmeted head flies off, head flies out of helmet, helmet lands, head flies further… that actually kind of makes sense. Yay?

So while everyone else theorizes about who Rey’s parents are, I sit here and analyze a minor moment from the worst “Star Wars” movie… I only thought of it because I watched the Cinemawins video on this and noticed the tiny detail, okay!

So what do you think? Am I making sense or is this total bullshit? Leave any and all thoughts in the comments.

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Movie discussion: When is “X-Men: Apocalypse” set?

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Hello there ladies and gents, and welcome to Movie Discussions, a series I have on this blog that’s been kind of dead since… April 2015, holy shit. But this is where I ramble about theories and such I have regarding movies. And today we will be taking a look at this year’s “X-Men: Apocalypse”. So with that said, if you have not seen the movie then I recommend that you do first, because there will be some spoilers throughout. There, with that cleared up… let’s get into it!

So in this post we will be taking a look at the question… When is “X-Men: Apocalypse” set? Now, I don’t mean what year, because we do get told that it is 1983. What I mean is that I want to be more specific as to when in 1983 it is set… and I think I have managed to get a pretty good idea as to when, since it doesn’t say any specific dates in the movie, only the year. But with help from certain clues I found in the movie, I have narrowed it down a bit. So let’s talk about it.

The first clue as to figuring it out comes in the form of the scene when Apocalypse (Oscar Isaac) together with Psylocke (Olivia Munn) and Storm (Alexandra Shipp) goes to recruit Angel (Ben Hardy). In the scene we have a miserable and most likely drunk Angel, moping while listening to Metallica’s “The Four Horsemen”, which in itself is a fun nod toward Apocalypse and his four horsemen. But this actually realle helps narrow down the time quite a bit. You see, “The Four Horsemen” is a part of Metallica’s debut album “Kill ’em All”, which came out in 1983. To be more specific, it was released on July 25th of that year. So this basically eliminiates the entire first half of 1983. And logically speaking, Angel is probably not listening to that on the day the album came out, so we can most definitely eliminate July as well. And for those who are wondering, “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)”, which was featured in the amazing Quicksliver (Evan Peters) rescue scene, was released in ’83, but before “Kill ’em All”.

My next piece of evidence leans a bit more on speculation, but if you think about it I am making some sense. This isn’t necessarily from a specific scene, it’s more a general thing that could be gathered every now and then. In the scenes where we are at the X-mansion we are given a good look at the outside surrounding it. Based on information given to us from the writers of the comics and such, the X-mansion is supposedly located in the very northeast corner of Westchester county, which is part of the state of New York (because Marvel loves New York apparently). And in my research I quickly found out that Westchester county and the state of New York in general have really snowy winters. And looking at the area surrounding the mansion, we can see that there’s no snow, in fact it is quite green in the area. So that immediately eliminates December. And going back to it being green and even sunny, I’d argue tht November and October are out of the question too since that’s when shit starts decaying and becoming grey, AKA not green, AKA not this movie.

So after eliminating the first half of the year and the last three months of the year, we have managed to narrow down that movie is set around August or September of 1983. Would it be possible to narrow it down even more? Probably. At this point I can only really guess. The closest thing we have to a piece of evidence is Cyclops (Tye Sheridan) being in a High School classroom when we first meet him. And I’m pretty sure High School doesn’t begin until late August/early September in the states, but I could be wrong on that, especially since this movie is set in 1983 and not 2016. But if I’m right with that, the movie is most likely set in September of 1983. Again, this is mainly speculation. I won’t really lose any sleep if Bryan Singer or Simon Kinberg refuse to confirm if I’m correct or not with this. I just did this because I started thinking about it this morning and felt like I needed to write about it. And it’s fun to do another Movie Discussion again. But to conclude this: Based on evidence found throughout the movie, I have (probably) come to the conclusion that “X-Men: Apocalypse” is set in August/September of 1983!

What do you guys think? Am I making sense? Am I conjuring up total bullshit? Do you have any other theories? Leave any and all answers in the comments!
Have a good one!

 

Movie Discussion: The Point of “Elephant”

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Hello fellow people on the internet, I’m back! Sorry for the lack of posts lately, my laziness caught up to me. But now I am here and I am ready to get another post out there! So what are we doing today? Well we are here to have a little movie discussion about one of the (in my opinion) most underrated movies ever. A movie that has gotten a lot of mixed reception and has split audiences worldwide… even though it isn’t that well-known. But we are here to discuss it today. Soooo… HERE WE GO!

Just a fair warning; If you have not seen “Elephant” from 2003 directed by Gus Van Sant, I suggest you should leave now as there will be spoilers. Now that I have gotten that out of the way, let’s move on.

Let’s start of with the simple question “Why make a discussion about such an obscure movie?”. Well it all started with me going on to youtube the other day because of me wanting to watch the final scene of the movie after not having seen it in a long time. If you have seen the movie then you know which one I am talking about. If you have not seen the movie then you obviously didn’t read that previous paragraph, spoilers. But if you simply don’t give a shit and don’t want to see a really good movie then here we go. In the final scene of the movie we have the characters of Eric (Eric Duelen) and Alex (Alex Frost) coming to school with a bunch of big duffel bags filled with guns. When they then are inside of the school they pull out all the guns and start shooting up the place. Killing students, teachers and even the principal. Now the reason my watch of that scene led to this post doesn’t come from me simply watching the scene itself. It came from going on to read the comments on the video. And from what I gathered… people don’t seem to get the point of the movie. They only focus on things you focus on in a big budget Hollywood movie. And I will address those points here. Their points are what inspired me to do this. Time to pick up the shit from the street and throw it in the trash.

First up we take the one that the people focused on too much… more than most other points in fact. What I am talking about is the acting. Now to be fair, the acting in the movie isn’t particularly good. I would even say that it is below average, but I got some things to say about that. I did some research about the movie and found out that a lot, if not most of the cast comes from director Gus Van Sant’s hometown of Portland, Oregon where the movie was shot. What he did was pick out some random youths from there to really show off that these people pretty much were students in that school. Hell, they all were pretty much within the right age range to actually be in high school. Unlike 100% of big budget Hollywood movies which use people in their 20’s and 30’s who happen to look kinda young. The point of the movie wasn’t to have Oscar-worthy performances but to give us genuine people. Acting isn’t everything, guys.

Next up we have something that I can agree is a tad bit strange; When Alex and Eric are going around shooting people, and gunshots can be heard by those who haven’t been killed yet, they don’t know how to react. And that is the key phrase in all of this, “They don’t know how to react”. This is a school filled with students and teachers who have never experienced something like this before. They have never had their school shot up, by two of their own students none the less. Put yourself in their shoes for a second, you’re sitting in class, boring as usual and then suddenly hear some weird noise, kind of like a small bang. You hear it come closer and closer through the hall outside of the classroom. What do you do? Youy probably don’t know what you should do, am I right? Should you sit calmly and hope for the best, go check what it is or get the hell outta dodge? You’d probably sit calmly and hope for the best, but still worry for a bit. And then someone would come into the classroom and you would all be dead within a matter of seconds. So complaining that people didn’t panic like a bunch of paranoid conspiracy theorists on Halloween is kind of bullshit.

Now to something that is understandable on a surface level, but still baffles me is that people find this scene boring. And what I mean by “understandable on a surface level” is that when people want a shooting in a movie they expect tons of shooting, explosions, CGI and orchestral music blasting your eardrums. And while those things can be cool in some ways, they wouldn’t fit here. What Van Sant wanted was a more realistic, grounded and horrifying way of looking at it. What we see is these two simply walking around, occasionally firing off a shot. This scene is very quiet and doesn’t use the unnecessary Hollywood checklist. To be completely honest, the scene is one of my favorite scenes/third acts in any movie ever. One of the reasons for this is the fact that they use no music at all throughout the scene. Sure you could add some dramatic and bombastic song or sad piano song, but that wouldn’t have had the same effect. At that point the music would have told us what we should have felt “Sad Piano tells you to feel sad, so feel sad you fucker”. But “Elephant” chose the ballsy and in my opinion more powerful movie by not having any music at all throughout the scene. It makes the scene more real and more horrifying. Sometimes the best of something is nothing of something (If that makes any sense).

There are also people who really seemed to dislike the ending of the movie. Now for you who haven’t seen the movie in a while, and for you assholes who haven’t seen the movie at all and have kept reading despite my warning, I will recount the end. In the end Alex and Eric meet up in the school cafeteria and have a chat about how everything have gone for them… then Alex shoots Eric. Soon after we see Alex cornering two more students in a cold storage and standing there deciding their fate… “Eeny, meeny, miny, moe”. And then it cuts without any real resolution. And I can see why some people would be pissed about it… but I personally like it. I love when a movie can be ambiguous about something. And an ambiguous ending is really something great… unless they plan a sequel and make it painfully obvious. Now I don’t think there have been any plans for “Elephant 2: Electric Boogaloo”, so I am happy with the ambiguity.

The point of “Elephant” isn’t to be the next big thing, it is about the lives of regular high school students and how it all one day changed. That’s it… nothing more to it.

“Elephant” is a tragic and brutal movie that I absolutely love and I do not agree with any of the points mentioned (Except for the acting being bad, but again, that’s not the point of the movie), but if you do, that’s fine as long as you have respect for differing opinions. Now that I am done with all of this, time for a question! What is your opinion of “Elephant”? Leave a comment.

Have a good one.

Movie Discussion: Could something really be called “the best”?

The Best

Hello people. Time for another little discussion (Sidenote: Technically it is more of an opinion piece, but “Discussion” sounds better). The last one I did was on action movies and how they have gotten tame and that there are fewer awesome ones these days. Now we will have a look at something that has been on my mind for quite some time; can you really call a movie “the best”? So let’s stop screwing around, time to discuss!

Let’s first get something straight, by best I mean either “Best of all time” or “Best of that genre” or something in a similar fashion. This is something that has been boggling my mind after seeing a lot of websites and critics call certain movies “The Best of all time” and similar. Now while a lot of cases these things are based on their personal opinions and that’s fine. It’s just really strange to me why they would call their favorite movie “The Best Movie”. I mean, could something really be the best? Or is it something that people came up with to basically flip the bird to everyone and say “Fuck you, my opinion is the only opinion that matters”. And has there ever been anyone who has been right about that?

We of course have several movies that by many have been called “The best movie ever” such as “The Godfather” and “Citizen Kane”. And when you have so many people agreeing about something like that, it has to be correct, right? Not really! What we have are a lot of people who share one opinion about something… but you still have a large group of individuals who don’t agree with them. Considering there are so many different opinions on movies, I don’t think there could ever really be a “BEST MOVIE EVER!!!”. Now I haven’t seen “Citizen Kane”, but I do imagine that it still could be a good movie… but best movie ever? Same with “The Godfather” which I have in fact seen, and I agree that it is a great movie. Problem with calling a movie the “best movie ever” is that there will be more people disagreeing with you than you could imagine.

Now I might have a small idea why people call it “Best Movie Ever” and not “My Favorite Movie”; they are afraid to get personal in all of it. By calling it “best movie ever” they look more professional and that is why people look at critics with a lot more positivity than the regular people who talk about movies… like me. The critics try to sneakily get their opinions in while still sounding somewhat objective. The only people who can properly be credited as critics who dared to get their personal opinions on movies into their reviews are Gene Siskel (R.I.P) and Roger Ebert (R.I.P). On their old show “Siskel & Ebert” they had banter about what they thought about the movies and they really got into it personally and that is why they worked so well and have earned my respect. Unlike most other “critics” who talk like they are a fucking robot who got no opinion about anything.

“Well, you gotta have an opinion” – Vincent Vega, “Pulp Fiction” 1994.
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So what the hell am I trying to say? There is no such thing as “Best Ever”. Example: The Oscars every year pick out their choice for “Best Picture”, and while I have agreed with them a few times… they are still wrong. What I mean by that is that there will always be a ton of people disagreeing with that Oscar committee of old, white men. You can never get a perfect choice for “Best Picture” or any other category without pissing some people off. The same goes for those of you who make lists like “Top 10 Best Movies of *Insert year here*”. You call it the wrong fucking thing. Call it “My Top 10 Favorite Movies of *Insert year here*”. Saying “Best” is what makes you look like assholes who give no shit about the opinions of other people. Movies are incredibly subjective… hell, most forms of media (TV, Books, Music, Video Games, etc.) are based all around subjectivity. There can NEVER be any definitive choice for “Best of something”… EVER!

To sum it up quickly. Everything is so subjective, you can never pin any label to anything. “Best of something” “Worst of something”. Since subjectivity is the definitive factor in all of this then there can never a way of knowing what is the best of something or not. But if you’re gonna continue being an asshole about it then I think Wolverine has something to say;
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What are your opinions on the subject? Leave a comment and let me know, I love discussions. Aaaaand that’s it for me.

Have a good one!

Movie Discussion: Action movies

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How are you guys? Finally I am back with another movie discussion. Last time I did one I talked about the “logic” of giving Jamie Foxx a Best Supporting Actor nomination for his role in “Collateral” when clearly he was the main protagonist. But this time we are not really looking at one specific movie but rather a genre of movies. As you can read in the title this is going to be about action movies and what is going on with them. Now let’s quit stalling and get on with it! Time for a movie discussion… about action movies! (Sidenote: I will refer to action heroes as “he” for simplicity in writing).

Action movies as a whole is a genre I gladly watch simply for the expectation and deliverance of high octane entertainment. Seeing a hero (or heroes) solve a problem through any means necessary. But what I have noticed recently is a decline in what makes action movies as awesome as they are not only as simple popcorn entertainment but also as really good movies. Let’s start with one of the main factors of an action movie, the hero. In an action movie you want a hero that is cool, can handle tough situations but yet is vulnerable and relatable in a sense. In most action movie these past 15(ish) years the hero is an invulnerable jacked dude who dodges everything harmful perfectly yet delivers a major smackdown on thebad guys without a single problem. Sure, the scene might be entertaining but since he is so unstoppable it looses its appeal and we will not care for the guy. A few perfect examples of badass action heroes who can take care of trouble yet are vulnerable are John McClane from “Die Hard”, Riggs and Murtaugh from “Lethal Weapon” and more recently John Wick in… “John Wick”.

                    A relatable hero is a requirement for a more engaging action movie.
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Another thing to take into account in an action movie is… the action (duh!). For one it has to be intense to really get our blood pumping and show how badass it is. Of course I am not saying the action scenes should be shooty-bang-bang and explosions galore, but they need to have a lot of flair and intensity. We need to feel like the action is awesome and we need to know that it means business. I also feel like the action needs to be memorable. And by that I mean it have to sort of dig itself into out memories by being great. Some of the best examples of action scenes that you’ll remember after seeing them (for me at least) include any action scene from “The Matrix”, the badass action scenes from “The Rock”, the awesome highway action from “Speed” and of course every awesome battle in Ridley Scott’s classic action-epic “Gladiator”.

 Memorable action scenes, they are not always easy to make but damn, are they awesome!
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Next up that I wanted to discuss was something relating to the previous part and that is visibility of the action. What do I mean by that? Motherfucking shaky-cam. Whoever thought it would make every action scene better if they weren’t visible should get a slap in his face! Sure, sometimes it can be used in a way where it actually works in the movie. A good example of where the shaky-cam works are the “Bourne” trilogy, terrific action movies that still has shaky-cam. A few bad examples of shaky-cam however are movies such as “The Hunger Games”, “Alex Cross” and (unforunately) “The Bourne Legacy”. Shaky-cam… stop it!

Great cases of shaky-cam.
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     Fucking awful cases of shaky-cam.
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Now of course I feel like I need to lay down my two cents on something that a lot of people (including me) have complained about when it comes to modern action movies, editing to achieve a certain rating. And what do I mean with that? Well by that I of course mean that they edit the movie and film it to be PG-13. Now that shouldn’t be such a big deal. But when they do it simply to get the movie more accessible to people because Hollywood likes money it kind of pisses me off. Of course I kind of get it with some movies like “The Hunger Games” where they maybe wanted to keep the movie within the intended demographic brought in by the books and the fact that seeing kids murder each other is kind of terrible. But sometimes you wonder “Why the hell is this movie PG-13?”. That is the reaction I got with movies like “Life Free or Die Hard” when the previous movies were rated R and with even more recently than that, “World War Z”. The final one is a fucking action movie with zombies and in zombie stuff we want our blood and gore! Of course I am not saying an action movie needs tons of blood and gore to be great, but watering an obvious originally R-rated movie down to a PG-13? Fuck you Hollywood! Now of course there can also be action movies that are PG-13 as well. Some good examples are “Inception”, “Taken”, the “Dark Knight” trilogy and of couse “Bourne”. PG-13 isn’t that terrible unless it’s used to only make more money… then it is stupid.

The bad side of the coin we call PG-13.
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    But there is still a valuable side to this coin.
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Rememebr earlier when I said you’d need a vulnerable action hero? Well that isn’t the only thing that is needed when it comes to the actors. You also need an actor who can sell the role to us. They need to give off the feeling of “Yeah I am just a guy kind of like you, but I can do cool stuff too”. It would also be great if they maybe did some of their own stunts. Some prime examples of actors who can sell action roles perfectly who also do their own stunts (mostly) include Keanu Reeves, Harrison Ford and of course, Tom Cruise! These people have dedicated themselves to the action scenes they’ve done and done a lot of their stunts all by themselves. And when you have actors who can’t really do stunts yet they end up in an action movie, that’s one of the reasons we get the previously mentioned shaky-cam. The best example out of the ones I mentioned of actors doing their own stunts is Tom Cruise. The guy does everything by himself and never use a stunt guy (damn, dude). The best example of how awesome Cruise is like that is to look at his infamous scene from “Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol” where he climbs the Burj Khalifa. That is actually him climbing it, without a stunt guy. Also, in some pictures from the set he has been seen climbing the ourside of a plane because… he is a fucking awesome idiot I guess. I am not saying people should risk their fucking lives like that, but it would be fun to see them do the stunts a bit on their own and not just say “NOPE! Stunt guy, get over here!”.

 Doing their own stunts? Hell yeah!
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Where do I want to get with this? I love good action movies and it is sad to see a lot of not so great ones arrive these days. So I wanted to discuss action movies for that. Let me know what your thoughts on action movies in our modern age are. Also, what is your favorite action movie of all time?

To end this off I will share a link with you guys to a video by awesome youtube movie reviewer Chris Stuckmann where he talks about action movies. He is very good at explaining things and I hope you will enjoy his stuff.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eac0lXfMs9c

See ya!

Movie discussion: Jamie Foxx is the main character in Collateral (2004)

How are you guys doing? Today I felt like starting another “series” here on my blog. In this “series” I will choose a movie related topic that I want to discuss. I will do these every now and then, not just to spit my thoughts out but also to here what you guys think about the situation. I will also be getting into a few spoilers in this “series” about the different movies I will be talking about throughout, so if you haven’t seen that specific movie…then go away, please. And today we are starting off with something that has been pinching me in the back of my head for a while now. And that is about one of my favorite movies; “Collateral”. So let’s begin!

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If you didn’t read the title of this entry, I will be talking about the main character of the fantastic movie “Collateral”. And you might be thinking “But if you say he’s the main character, then he is the main character right?”. Eh, wrong. The story of the movie is about the taxi driver Max (Jamie Foxx) who one night meets the very smart, very smooth hitman Vincent (Tom Cruise). Max is kept at gunpoint by Vincent through the entire movie as he is forced to drive Vincent to all his destinations where he has to kill somebody. Now if you listen to that short (and odd) synopsis of the movie you would automatically assume that Jamie Foxx is the main character, right? But if you go to imdb.com and look at the 2 Oscar nominations this movie got, Foxx was nominated for “Best Supporting Actor”. Do you see now how this is weird to me? Look, I know that Tom Cruise at the time was a slightly more well-known and popular actor…but that doesn’t make him the main guy in this movie. Sure, he is one of the main ones, but if anyone should have gotten the “Best supporting Actor” nod, it should have been Cruise. My guess on this is like I said, Cruise was the more popular actor at the time and therefore he wasn’t the “Supporting actor” in the pair. But I honestly don’t think that is an excuse to put the most prominent actor/character as “Supporting”. Look, I love Tom Cruise as much as the next guy, but I can see who is supporting or not in a movie. In the end, Max is the one still standing out of the two. Let me shortly recap the final(ish) scene of this movie for you. Vincent leaves Max in the street and goes after his final target who is a woman (Jada Pinkett Smith) Max met earlier that very same night. Max goes after him (after Vincent is gone, of course). He goes to the building where she works and Vincent has gone into. Max has gotten hold of a gun, shoots up the glass and gets in. He finds Vincent and Annie in there. Max and Annie escapes and enters the train…Vincent follows. In the end (which is slightly blurry) Vincent dies and Max & Annie lives on. The character you see most in the movie is Max. You see this movie (mostly) from his point of view.  And that makes Max the main character! So why in the hell is Jamie Foxx listed as “Best Supporting Actor”!? If you have a theory, leave it in the comments below and let me know.
Also, since you’ve gotten this far I assume you have seen “Collateral”. And in that case, what did you think of it? Let me know! Like I said, it’s one of my favorite movies of all time.

I hoped you “enjoyed” this little thing. I will be doing more of these later on, so stay tuned!

Now that I think about it, they kind of did the same thing with “Interview With The Vampire”. Ya know, had Tom Cruise being the most prominent actor on the posters/promotional art/DVD covers…odd.