Movie Review: Captain Marvel (2019)

Missed this in the cinema, so catching up now. Also, apologies that I haven’t written any posts in over a week, just haven’t been feeling up to it due to the hot weather. But here we go.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Captain Marvel”.

The story follows Carol Danvers (Brie Larson), a former fighter pilot who gets caught in an intergalactic war between two alien races. So now we have another Marvel origin movie. And I think that’s the one issue I have with it, it’s another Marvel origin. Not saying I disliked it, au contraire, I enjoyed it quite a bit. But it does still follow a lot of those familiar beats we recognize, and rarely does much to stand out. It does have a few enjoyable turns, and the overall narrative is still a fun, superhero adventure with a good message. So yeah, it’s pretty good.

The characters in this are fun, flawed, and interesting. Brie Larson plays Carol Danvers, a cocky, snide woman who has to go through a journey to become a hero. And I enjoy her arc, which weirdly enough reminds me of Ratchet’s arc in “Ratchet & Clank” (the original game, not the movie), starting out as a little bit of a cocky jerk, but goes through a good personal arc thanks to the events of the movie, and it makes her quite the enjoyable character. And Larson is really good in the role. We also get supporting work from people like Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn, Jude Law, Annette Bening, Lashana Lynch, Djimon Hounsou, and more, all doing really well in their respective roles.

The score for the movie was composed by Pinar Toprak, and I think she did a good job with it. Admittedly it does play it a bit safe sometimes with some of the orchestral action pieces, but then there are also tracks that play around with synthesizers to great an interesting, space-ish sound that kinda reminds me of “Mass Effect” (why am I making so many video game comparisons today?). And overall it works for the movie. Then there are some licensed tracks used throughout certain scenes, and some work better than others. There’s one in particular, which is a song I love, but was caught off guard by. So overall the music here is good.

Of course based on the popular Marvel Comics character, “Captain Marvel” was directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, and I think they did a really good job with it. They really brought a unique sort of energy to it, which made for some fun and interesting stuff during the action scenes. And I think it goes without saying at this point that the visual effects are fucking great.

This movie has been pretty well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 78% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 64/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,0/10.

“Captain Marvel” isn’t one of the MCU’s best movies, but it’s still one hell of an entertaining movie. It has a good plot, good characters, great performances, good music, and great directing/action/effects. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Captain Marvel” is an 8,78/10. So while not perfect, it’s still worth buying.

My review of “Captain Marvel” is now completed.

SHAZA- wait, that’s the wrong one.

Movie Review: Open Range (2003)

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If you’ve followed my blog for some time then you are probably aware that I love westerns. It’s probably my favorite movie genre. So whenever I get the chance to watch a western, I get excited. I get even more excited when I get to talk about said westerns here on the blog.

Ladies and gents… “Open Range”.

Boss Spearman (Robert Duvall) and Charley Waite (Kevin Costner) are two men who run a crew that makes sure their cattle gets to graze in the nice, open fields. But at one point they happen to get into trouble with a corrupt Sheriff (James Russo) and the local rancher (Michael Gambon) who happens to be a bit of a kingpin. So to keep this shit short and sweet, they get into trouble with these guys and have to try to stop them/take them out. Pretty standard western stuff, but I have to say that I was surprised at the depth that the plot had. It’s not just some cattle men who also happen to be gunslingers who have to take out some corrupt people, but there are so many more layers to it that I can’t get into because this review is supposed to be spoiler free. There are tons of little elements to the plot of “Open Range” that make it such an engaging watch. Yeah, it’s really good.

The characters in this movie are layered, interesting, and simply entertaining. Robert Duvall is (as we all know) a great actor, and it shows here too. He gives a terrific performance in this movie while also being pretty badass. Kevin Costner also gives a really good performance in this movie. And these two central actors have really good chemistry too, perfectly building off of each other. I’m not saying that you should expect there to be a whole bunch of really funny banter like Riggs and Murtaugh from “Lethal Weapon” or Harry and Gay Perry from “Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang”. I’m simply saying that they work very well together. We also get some really good performances from people like Annette Bening, Diego Luna, Abraham Benrubi, Michael Gambon, and Michael Jeter (R.I.P).

The film’s original score was composed by Michael Kamen (R.I.P) who of course made the music to movies like “Die Hard” and the previously mentioned “Lethal Weapon”. And the music he did for this movie is pretty damn good. Sure, a lot of it sounds like typical western stuff… but that isn’t a bad thing. It sounds great and it really makes the movie feel a lot bigger while also sounding great overall. Also, the song that plays during the end credits, “Holding All My Love For You” by Julianna Raye, is pretty damn good too.

This movie was directed by none other than… *drumroll* Kevin Costner! Yup, one of the stars of this movie also directed it. Not that it’s the first time that it has been done (not even the first for Costner), and it sure as hell isn’t the last either. But to call this movie well directed would be an understatement. Yes, I am saying that this movie looks fucking phenomenal and I was in awe at several shots in the movie. And while there aren’t that many shootouts in this movie, in fact there’s actually only one, really… near the end. And I honestly think that it is absolutely awesome. It goes on for some time too, which is great for me, because western shootouts are fun to witness. And since this goes on for a while and also features a good amount of dudes being gunned down, it will please those who love a good ol’ fashioned shooty-bang-bang session.

This movie has been well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 79% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 67/100. Roger Ebert gave the movie 3,5/4 stars. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,5/10.

“Open Range” is a movie that surprised me a pretty good amount. It has a great plot, great characters, great acting, great music, great directing, and an awesome shootout. Time for my final score. *Bang*. My final score for “Open Range” is a 9,87/10. This of course means that it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

My review of “Open Range” is now done.

Duvall shotgun

Movie Review: Danny Collins (2015)

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It’s interesting how there are so many ways musicians can become. Will they become the typical coked out and washed up piece of shit we see in a lot of cases or will they actually have a great career and never succumb to the drugs, alcohol, sex and other stupid bullshit? It’s always interesting to see that, at least in my opinion.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Danny Collins”.

In this movie we follow aging rock star Danny Collins (Al pacino, also roll credits). On his birthday, his manager Frank (Christopher Plummer) gives him a 40 year old letter from John Lennon that had suddenly popped up. So now Danny sets out to change his life thanks to the letter. And while it is interesting to see, I had one problem with the plot. And by that I don’t mean I had a problem with the plot itself, but I was taken out of it because of it being a little too predictable. I could figure out pretty well what was gonna happen next which is a little sad because I never like that to happen. Fortunately I still enjoyed it thanks to good execution and good writing.

While this movie lacks is original and unpredictable plot, it made up for in characters. They are all consistently well-written and entertaining as hell. I gotta say, this is the best performance Pacino has given us in recent years. I don’t think he has been this great since “Insomnia” in 2002. He is also the most charming I have ever seen him. Christopher Plummer is also great as his manager. Annette Bening plays his love interest in the movie and I think she did a great job. I also think she didn’t feel forced like almost every love interest does. Bobby Cannavale played Pacino’s son in the movie and he was great too. Everybody was great, even the annoying little kid who actually kind of had a reason to be annoying.

The soundtrack to this movie is one of the best I’ve heard in a while. Let’s start with the original tracks… there are two of them. One is supposed to be the main character’s “big hit” song that he plays at every concert, the song that he never gets away from. The second one is a song he writes over the course of the movie and that tracks is beautiful and awesome. The rest of the soundtrack are licensed tracks, but in a good way. What do I mean by that? It’s fucking John Lennon, how could it not be good? That’s right, they paid a lot of money for John Lennon songs and they used them perfectly.

Let’s see here, this movie was directed by… Dan Fogelman. And before this he had directed… nothing. Yeah, that’s the truth, this guy had not directed anything prior to this movie and yet he did it perfectly. The shots look great and everything is very well-done. Also, I don’t think I mentioned that this movie is really funny… because it is. The jokes in it are really good and I think Pacino delivered them perfectly.

This movie has been pretty-well-received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 77% positive rating and a “Fresh” ceritification. On Metacritic it has a score of 58/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,1/10.

“Danny Collins” is a pretty good movie. It has a good (but predictable) story, great characters/performances, an awesome soundtrack, really good directing and great writing. Time for my final score. *Pacino Growl*. My final score for “Danny Collins” is a 9,12/10. I think it’s worth buying.
Worth buying

“Danny Collins” is now reviewed.

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