Movie Review: Mission Impossible 3 (2006)

Holy shit, we’re already at the third part in my “Mission Impossible” review series. Time sure flies. Well, I guess we should jump into it like a Tom Cruise stunt.

Ladies and gents… “Mission Impossible 3”.

We once again follow IMF agent Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) as he gets dragged into another mission. And this time his mission is to find and capture a very elusive and dangerous arms dealer (Philip Seymour Hoffman, R.I.P). So now we have our twisty-turny spy thriller plot. What’s fun is that it takes the MacGuffin, single villain plot of the second movie and mixes it with some of the deeper conspiracy/twist-based stuff of the first. It’s a good, fast-paced, and entertaining spy thriller plot. But there is also where we find the main flaw/draw of the plot: It’s fast-paced. Like, “almost give you whiplash with how fast-paced it is” fast. It’s good because it keeps stuff from getting boring or too slow (a la the first half of “MI2”), but it also makes some scenes feel a bit too rushed. So overall this plot is really good, if a little too fast at times.

The characters in this are flawed, layered, and quite interesting. Tom Cruise of course returns as IMF agent Ethan Hunt, and I really mean it. This is not the wannabe James Bond from “MI2”, this is the Ethan of the first movie, but with some added details. He’s trying to settle down, but he’s also active in operations, trying to keep that side of his life secret. And Cruise is great in the role. Next we have Philip Seymour Hoffman (may he rest in peace) a Davian, the villainous arms dealer antagonist of this film. He’s a sinister, matter-of-fact, menacing motherfucker who proves a truly formidable foe for Ethan and his team. And Hoffman is fantastic in the role, taking lines that would be shit in lesser hands, and turning them into some of the most menacing things I’ve heard in movies. Next we have Michelle Monaghan as Julia, Ethan’s fiancée. Not gonna say too much as her development and such is kind of spoiler territory, but let’s just say that she’s a more interesting character than one would assume at first. And Monaghan is really good in the role. Then we get supporting work from Ving Rhames, Laurence Fishburne, Keri Russell, Jonathan Meyers, Maggie Q, Billy Crudup, Eddie Marsan, Simon Pegg, and more, all doing very well in their respective roles.

The score for the movie was composed by Michael Giacchino and it was pretty damn good. What he did here is that he gave us an orchestral score that featured both big, bombastic action tracks and smaller, tension-building tracks for some of the smaller scenes. It’s really a damn solid score that works very well for this movie.

This movie was the feature film debut of J.J. Abrams, and I think he did a really good job with it. As some of you might know, he has a penchant for making his movies very fast-paced, and while that can be a little bit of a detriment to the plot here (as mentioned in a previous section), it does nothing but help the action scenes here. The action here is fucking great, giving us fighting, shooting, swinging, running (so much running), and more, blending it into some damn entertaining stuff.

This movie has been pretty well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 70& positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 66/100. Roger Ebert gave it 2,5/4 stars. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,9/10.

“Mission Impossible 3” is a return to form after the disappointing second installment. It has a really good plot, good characters, great performances, really good music, and really good direction. As I mentioned earlier, the relentless pace of this movie makes a few moments throughout feel a little bit rushed (but not enough to ruin the movie). Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Mission Impossible 3” is an 8,87/10. So while flawed, it’s still definitely worth buying.

My review of “Mission Impossible 3” is now completed.

Only one more to go.

Movie Review: Eye in the Sky (2016)

As time goes on humans are continuing to look for new and interesting ways to kill each other. One of the most interesting toys that humans have come up with is the drone. A machine flying high in the sky to fire missiles so you die. Okay, they can be used for non-lethal surveillance as well, but we all know that those things are capable of highly destructive killing.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Eye in the Sky”.

Katherine Powell (Helen Mirren) is a colonel within the UK military and she’s been tasked with leading a drone operation to take out a group of terrorists located in Kenya. However the operation runs into quite a problem when a little girl is in the so-called kill zone. This triggers a tough discussion about what should be done. Should they strike, should they not? Can they somehow minimize collateral damage? This plot was pretty fucking great. There’s a lot of layers to the plot, with the political aspects of politicians/military making a drone strike and it potentially killing a girl plus other people who might be unlucky enough to be near. But there’s not only the political angle to it, but also an overall moral dilemma for the people piloting the drone. What I also appreciated was the fact that it didn’t just go for the typical “military are heroes stopping the bad terrorists” approach, but it’s actually being more grey in it’s approach. It’s also in general really suspenseful, with the tension rising more and more throughout the entire thing. At one point it also got me a bit emotional… just thought I’d mention that. So yeah, this plot is pretty fucking great.

The characters in this were all fleshed out enough that I would not only find them pretty interesting, but I also cared about them. Helen Mirren is great, playing this woman who has to try to stay calm while also calling the shots in this difficult operation. Aaron Paul is terrific as the drone pilot, starting as just your average guy controlling a big metal thing in the sky to at one point giving us some of that emotion that he’s known for. Phoebe Fox plays Aaron Paul’s co-pilot and she’s great in the role. Alan Rickman (may he rest in peace) is great as a general that is involved in this whole ordeal. We also got Barkhad Abdi as one of the military’s allies located in Kenya, and he was really great in the role. All teh actors did really well in this movie.

The score for the movie was composed by Paul Hepker & Mark Kilian and it was great. The score was intense, dramatic, and fit the movie very well, perfectly adding to the tension/excitement of certain scenes.

This movie was directed by Gavin Hood (who also has a small role in the movie) and I would say that he did a pretty damn good job. The shots do look great, but what I love most about his direction is how taut it is. Even in moments where nothing really happens, he finds some way to make it really tense. In lesser hands this would’ve had a bunch of unnecessary action scenes so the audience won’t get “bored”, but Hood managed to hold my attention with very little. There are barely any gunshots in this war movie, but it’s still incredibly tense.

This movie has been well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 95% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 73/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,3/10.

“Eye in the Sky” is a fantastic political war thriller. It has a great plot, really good characters, fantastic performances, great music, and great directing. Time for my final score. *Clears throat*. My final score for “Eye in the Sky” is a 9,89/10. This of course means that it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “Eye in the Sky” is now completed.

Great job, mr. Hood… now I know that “X-Men Origins” being bad wasn’t your fault!

Movie Review: Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV (2016)

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It’s clear that Hollywood doesn’t know what the fuck they’re doing when they try to make movies based on video games. So that’s why I’ll stick to Japan who have given us some really good ones.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV”.

Lucis is a land which holds a very powerful magic crystal that the kingdom of Niflheim wants. So the king of Lucis, king Regis (Sean Bean) orders his army to protect the land and the crystal at all costs. So it’s up to Nyx Ulric (Aaron Paul) and the rest of the Kingsglaive (roll credits) to protect the land. I know this all sounds like a bit of nonsense… but that’s kind of the point. Ever since the first “Final Fantasy” game was released, it’s been all about nonsense fantasy stuff. And “Kingsglaive” is no different in that regard. But the plot here is still interesting and fun to follow, especially if you’re a fan of the franchise. There is a lot of stuff going on, and I really enjoyed it all.

The characters in this movie are not the most interesting of individuals. They are not bad at all as far as characters go, but they are not too memorable. As for the performances… they’re pretty good. Of course there’s a lot to it since there’s voice acting, motion capture, and 3D-modeling on all characters… so I’m really only going to focus on the voice acting. Aaron Paul plays main character Nyx Ulric and he did a really good job. At first he can seem a bit stoic and flat, but he really gets to act out a bit more as the movie goes on. Not to Jesse Pinkman levels, but he still does a really good job. Lena Headey plays princess Lunafreya and she did a pretty good job, not fantastic, but she was good. Sean Bean as king Regis… old and wise and he’s really good. The rest of the cast (none as well known as the main three), they all do a really good job. Meh characters, really good acting.

The score was composed by John Graham & Yoko Shimomura and it is pretty epic. It’s big, bombastic, and badass. Perfectly fitting the “Final Fantasy” name while overall being pretty damn good. Seriously, it’s awesome.

Since this happens to be an animated feature we should talk about the animation… holy motherfucking shit, it is absolutely stunning. Look at the environments, looks at the characters’ faces, look at their hair! It all looks absolutely amazing. And the action scenes, while a bit jumpy at times are pretty damn badass. They’re huge and really fun to watch. The final act is a really bombastic and ridiculous action set piece that I had a blast watching.

This movie has gotten some mixed reception. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 13% positive rating (ouch). On Metacritic it has a score of 35/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,0/10.

“Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV” will not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I honestly had a blast with it. It had a fan plot, good performances, great music, fantastic animation, and really fun action scenes. However I will have to pull it down a little because of the cahracters not being very compelling and also because of some very quick cutting in a few action scenes. Time for my final score. *Clears throat*. My final score for “Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV” is a 9,21/10. So I’d say that it’s worth buying.
Worth buying

My review of “Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV” is now completed.

That was fun… hopefully I’ll also have a blast whenever I get to play the game.

 

Movie Review: Hellion (2014)

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Family is probably the most important thing in our life. You know, next to oxygen and liquids and nurishment… but on a deeper scale, family is the most important thing. So it’s sad when someone’e family life is complete and utter shit.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Hellion”.

Hollis Wilson (Aaron Paul) doesn’t really have the best life at the moment. First off, he lives in a shitty house which is a terrible place for him to try raise his two sons. Second, he might have a bit of a drinking problem. So when his youngest son Wes (Deke Garner) gets placed with his aunt (Juliette Lewis) by CPS, Hollis and his older son Jacob (Josh Wiggins) have to find a way to improve their lives and get Wes back. Now while there is a bit of the whole “Shitty father has to improve his life for his damily” cliché in here, the story still presents itself in a pretty good way. Key word(s) being “pretty good”. The way it is presented overall is really good, giving a good sense of drama (even if it at times might not make sense). However the plot moves at a slow pace. And when I complain about a movie having a slow pace, something is wrong. Also, while I usually praise ambiguity and the choice of leaving things for the imagination, the ending could have been a bit less ambiguous. So yeah, overall the plot is okay.

What “Hellion” lacks in plot, it doesn’t make up for in characters, but rather in acting. Josh Wiggins gives a really good performance for someone so young in this movie. Sure, he’s no Tye Sheridan or Haley Joel Osment, but he’s still good. Deke Garner is fine as his little brother. Juliette Lewis (fun to see her in something these days) was really good in her role. Aaron Paul… Aaron Paul. You might think I am about to complain about him, but no! He was fantastic in the movie. I would put the quality of his performance slightly below “Breaking Bad”. In other words, it’s still realy fucking great. There weren’t any bad performances in this movie, but there weren’t really any character too interesting. None stod out to me like “Yes, that character is memorable and great”, so that brings it down a little bit.

The soundtrack consists mainly of heavy metal songs. As someone who listen to a decent amount of heavy metal, I recognized some of the songs and enjoyed them. And at times it really worked for the movie, but I can also admit that at times it didn’t really work at all. I can also admit that my personal preference when it comes to metal kicked in a little since I didn’t like all the metal songs used. Most felt generic and meh. The ones that really stood out the most to me were the two songs by Metallica that they used, and that might be simply because I fucking love Metallica. But overall the soundtrack for the movie was pretty good.

While the framing and pict710ure quality for the movie was good, I still feel like I need to complain about the directing/camera work here. The movie is too shaky. At times it was fine, nothing to complain about there. But then we have times where it is really distracting and really annoying. I would’ve liked to see some more steady shots in the movie. Even “Joe” which came out the same year was more steady than this and that also looked like it took place in someone’s dumpster. What I mean by dumpster is that the location they are at looks like a piece of shit. Also, fun fact: This is based on a short done by the director Kat Candler back in 2012. Not that it improves anything, I jsut thought it’d be fun to mention it.

This movie has gotten some mixed reception to say the least. On Rotten Tomatoes it got a 60% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 55/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,2/10.

“Hellion” got major potential to be a great movie, but unfortunately it fell donw a pit and lost the potential somewhere. The story is average & slow, the characters are not interesting even though the acting overall is great, the soundtrack is pretty good and the directing is annoying & distracting. Time for my final score. AAAHHHH! My final score for “Hellion” is a 7,01/10. While not great, it is still worth a rental.
Rent it

Review of “Hellion” is completed.

I really got nothing to finish this with.

My Favorite Scenes: Breaking Bad – What about a magnet?

Hello guys, I am back again with another “episode” of the “series” “My Favorite Scenes” where I give you a scene that I like from a movie or TV-show. And today we have a scene from the fifth season of the critically acclaimed drama “Breaking Bad”. And if you didn’t catch the drift, there are minor spoilers for season 5 of “Breaking Bad” so if you have not seen it yet, go away! Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s talk about the scene. In this scene we see Walt (Bryan Cranston) and Mike (Jonathan Banks) angrily discussing how they will get a laptop filled with incriminating information out of a very secure vault. Of course they get nowhere with their discussion until Jesse (Aaron Paul) comes with the brilliant idea of… magnets. The reason I chose this scene is mainly because while Walt and Mike are bickering about the plans, Jesse sits in the background (getting no attention at first) and goes like “What about magnets?”. Seeing/hearing him just sit there and try to get their attention is pretty hilarious to me.
Enjoy!

Series Review: Breaking Bad (2008 – 2013)

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As a fan of both television and drama movies, a drama show should fit me perfectly right? Well that is kind of true… if the show is any good that is. So then there was this show people called “The Greatest thing on television”. It got me curious on what “The Greatest thing on television” would be like. so then I decided to start checking it out. So what did I think of it after finishing it? Did I like it? Did I hate it? Let’s find out!

Ladies and gentlemen… “Breaking Bad”.

So what is this show about? Well it is about chemistry teacher Walter White (Bryan Cranston) who lives a quiet life with his wife Skyler (Anna Gunn) and his son Walter Jr. (RJ Mitte) in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Unfortunately one day he gets told by a doctor that he got lung cancer. So after he afterwards runs into his former student Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) he decides to partner up with Jesse to start cooking meth. Both to keep his family going strong after he passes away (from the cancer). The most interesting thing about the meth that Walter and Jesse cooks is that it is the purest meth ever created. How pure you ask? Well about 99,1% pure (holy shit). Now of course there is more to it than that, but I am not one to spoil stuff for the ones who have not seen stuff yet. Let me just say that intensity intensifies. You will get great little stories within the seasons. And not only is the premise of the show great, the execution is really great too. Oh yeah, another kind of great aspect of the story (not spoiler, don’t worry) is that Walter is cooking crystal without any member of his family knowing it, which is kind of ironic since his brother-in-law Hank (Dean Norris) is part of the D.E.A. The evolution of the story is great and just really well done.

For a story to stay great you need great characters… boom! You got ’em! Walter White is a guy who starts out sort of nerdy and just… guy-ish and just declines to sort of becoming an anti-hero. Not only because of the meth cooking, but for other other reasons too. And Bryan Cranston aces the character so well. The guy gives honestly one of the best performances in any TV-show ever… period. Aaron Paul as Jesse Pinkman, the “not-as-smart-as-Walt” guy. The guy driven more by emotions and such things rather than Walt who tries to meticulously plan everything. But I need to be honest, Aaron Paul might be my favorite actor in the series. For one, I never expected him to give this type of grade-A performance. The guy really showed everyone that he is a fucking great actor. Then of course you have the supporting cast, like Skyler who is a bit of bitch, probably my least favorite character. Not hating her, but still… least favorite. Walt Jr. I am pretty neutral about considering he doesn’t do as much as most of the other characters. Hank is great as he at first is mostly sort of comic-relief, but by the end of it he has developed so much as a character that he was just great. But by god, my favorite(ish) character just might be the one of Saul Goodman (Bob Odenkirk). The guy is a shady lawyer. Like Jesse put it; “We don’t need a criminal LAWYER, we need a CRIMINAL lawyer”. The guy is just great. Snf I think the reason I love him so much is because he is, throughout the entire series, THE comic-relief character. He reminds me of Sam Rockwell in a lot of ways, but that story is for another day. And one final thing about the characters… even though most characters here are really grey on the moral scale, this show still got some great villains… no joke. These are some of the best villains I have seen in anything ever. They are just fucking amazing.

The music in this show… oh my god, the music! The few licensed tracks in the show were songs I did like already and that really fit when they were used. But of course that’s not important, because you are here to hear about my thoughts on the original score by Dave Porter… his score is one of the best original scores I have ever heard. My god it does so much right! In the paarts where the show wants you to feel excited and thrilled, the score captures that perfectly. If it wants to be haunting and get under your skin, it does that. The score is nothing short of perfect and I just love it so much. I am probably picking it up some time in the future.

What can I say in the “General Stuff” segment? Oh yeah, the cinematography is fucking amazing! It looks beautiful and never ceased to keep me interested. Because there were a few moments (no spoilers) that weren’t too interesting to me early on in the show, but I was kept interested thanks to the excellent cinematography. And the writing, both in dialogue and story is just great in every sense of the word. There are a few pieces of dialogue in this show that really got me thinking and really sounded awesome. The suspense in this show was also great, it never felt dull or forced, it was real! It might also be fun to mention that the creator, Vince Gilligan actually started out as a writer for “The X-Files”.

What do people think of this show? Well of don’t already know that then you’ve been hiding under a rock since since 2008… or even earlier. People love this show. And on most sites it is difficult to find a good score to use as reference since most sites rank by season and not the entirety of the series. But I can give you the links. Here is Rotten Tomatoes who certified every season as “Fresh”. The show also exists on Metacritic if you want to use that as refrence. Now I can finally use a score as reference… thank you imdb.com! It got a score of 9,5/10 on imdb.

“Breaking Bad” got a great story, superb acting and characters, a perfect soundtrack, excellent cinematography, great dialogue and one of the best finales of any TV-show I have ever seen. So now I want to hand out my final score. So, my final score for “Breaking Bad” is a 9,90/10 which as you may have guessed gives it… the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”
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Review of “Breaking Bad” is now done.

Let’s cook!