“Pacific Rim: Uprising” trailer!

Hello there, ladies and gents. Time for some trailer talk. So let’s do it.

So we recently got our first real trailer for “Pacific Rim: Uprising”, the sequel to Guillermo Del Toro’s super badass mech movie from 2013. And in this we follow John Boyega who plays the son of Idris Elba’s character from the first first movie. And there are giant monsters called Kaiju that the good guys have to fight with the help of giant mechs called Jaegers. And we see the return of both Charlie Day and Burn Gorman in this trailer. So what do I think of this trailer? The trailer is pretty straight-forward, but the movie looks like a lot of badass fun. And a bit of Boyega goes a long way. So yeah, I’m pretty excited. “Pacific Rim: Uprising” is set to be released in the first half of 2018. I say first half because the United States will get it in March and we here in Sweden will get it in late May (which is horseshit).

What are your thoughts? Are you excited for “Pacific Rim: Uprising”? And what did you think of the first movie? Leave any and all thoughts in the comments!
Have a good one and enjoy the trailer!

Movie Review: In a Valley of Violence (2016)

Something, something… Markus likes westerns… something, something… let’s get into it!

Ladies and gents… “In a Valley of Violence”.

The story of this movie follows a mysterious wanderer (Ethan Hawke) who experiences a horrific act of violence. And then he goes on a hunt to find and take out the people responsible. It’s a very simple western revenge plot, and it really never needed to be anything more. Sometimes you don’t need an overly complicated plot or a plot touching on the themes of morality and/or the psychology of the characters. This plot is exactly what it needed to be… a highly enjoyable western revenge tale. Original? Nope. Good? Hell yes.

The characters in this movie, while not very deep, are all interesting and entertaining. Ethan Hawke is great as the main guy. His character is also probably the deepest, because thye actually give him a backstory and clear motivations. And Hawke gave us a great performance. John Travolta plays the Marshal of the town that most of the movie is set and he was actually really good. Sure, he never gets to do anything that truly stretches his acting muscles, but he still did well in the role. James Ransone plays Travolta’s son/the man that makes Ethan Hawke go on the hunt for the assholes responsible, and he was really good. His character is set up to be a big cunt, and Ransone played that very well. Taissa Farmiga plays a young woman Hawke more or less befriends in the movie, and she was really good. Karen Gillan is in the movie, playing the wife of James Ransone’s character, and she was really good in the role. Then we have Larry Fessenden as Roy, a member of Ransone’s crew, and how do I put it… his character was really over-the-top and Fessenden was just a million flavors of fun in the role. And we also have Burn Gorman as a preacher that pops up at a few times in the movie, and he was really good in the role. All actors did a really solid job in the movie!

The original score for the movie was composed by Jeff Grace and it was great. It is a mix of both old and new. Let me explain. The composition shares similarities to scores from Ennio Morricone’s old western scores. But it also shares a few similarities with some more modern scores, à la “The Assassination of Jesse James” or “Sicario”. And it all fit the movie very well, often making scenes more intense while being overall well composed.

This movie was directed by Ti West and I think he did a great job. What I like most about it feels like an old-school 1960s western. The shots just feel like something from Sergio Leone. Now, it’s not quite as great as Leone’s stuff, I’m just trying to find a suitable comparison. But yeah, it’s like an old western but with better camera/sound equipment and more blood. So yes, this is a pretty violent movie. When people get shot, there’s blood. Not as much as in maybe “Django Unchained”, but there’s definitely more blood than in a fair amount of other westerns. And for anyone possibly wondering, I am not using any of these comparisons to make this movie seem smaller/worse than it is… just trying to find good ways to explain certain elements of it.

This movie has been decently well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 77% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 64/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,0/10.

“In a Valley of Violence” is a really solid old-school western. It has a good plot, good characters, great performances, great music, and great directing. Time for my final score. *Bang!*. My final score for “In a Valley of Violence” is a 9,78/10. Which means that it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “In a Valley of Violence” is now completed.

Gotta say, 2016 was a pretty good year for westerns. “Magnificent Seven”, “Hell or High Water”, and “In a Valley of Violence”…

Movie Review: Crimson Peak (2015)

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BOO! Ha, got you! That’s right folks, the Month of Spooks is continuing. So instead of writing the typical clever intro, let’s just get into the review and see what spooky antics we’re facing today.

Ladies and gentlemen, please beware of… “Crimson Peak”.

Edith (Mia Wasikowska) is a young, aspiring writer who falls in love with the mysterious Thomas Sharpe (Tom Hiddleston) and moves in with him is a shitty, old house. There we also find Thomas’ sister, Lucille (Jessica Chastain) who will be staying with them. However, everything might not be as it seems. And from that we get a story that was kind of mismarketed. The trailer and ads made this seem like a straight-up horror movie, but that’s not really true. This is more of a romance with some spooky stuff to it. And the plot from the start seems really pretty interesting, presenting some compelling mystery in combination with the gothic romance. However it is bogged down a bit by some mediocre pacing. I mean, there are scenes that are pretty slow and don’t really add to much plotwise. The last 15 – 20 minutes on the other hand… fucking great stuff, I telll you. That bit is exactly what I wanted the movie woverall to be like… intense, suspenseful, bloody. So yeah, interesting overall plot with some mediocre pacing, and a pretty great final act.

The characters in ths movie aren’t the most interesting. The only truly interesting characters are the ones played by Tom Hiddleston and Jessica Chastain, and that’s mainly because you can tell that there’s something off about them, as well as their backstory being interesting. Though their backstory is not revealed until pretty late into it. But where the characters in the movie aren’t that interesting, it’s almost made up for by the performances, all of which are really good. Mia Wasikowska as Edith is great, Tom Hiddleston is great, Jessica Chastain is great, and even Charlie Hunnam is great… even though he shouldn’t attempt an American accent. Then we also get a few smaller supporting performances from Jim Beaver and Burn Gorman, both of which do really well in their roles. So okay, the characters are maybe not that interesting, but the acting in the movie is really good.

The original score was composed by Fernando Velázquez and I thought that it was really good. The score fit the movie perfectly, helping create the atmosphere that would be needed for each scene. Sure, it’s not the best score I’ve ever heard, but I really did think it was good and it worked very well for the movie.

This movie was directed by Guillermo Del Toro, and when it comes to him I can’t help but be excited for something new. He’s a fantastic director who has an eye for making some really creative and awesome stuff. From “Pan’s Labyrinth” to “Pacific Rim”, the man knows how to make a visually interesting film. And god damn it, he did it again! The sets, the directing, and the cinematography all look fucking fantastic! That is something you can always count on with Del Toro’s movies, the visuals will always be terrific. What I also really liked is that he set up a creepy atmosphere with his direction here. The movie isn’t really scary per se, but it definitely gave me some chills with it’s atmosphere. And I guess we have to talk about the ghosts that pop up every now and then. I think that they are visually interesting and look really cool. I’ve seen some behind the scenes stuff of how they did it and it’s practical makeup/prosthetics enhanced with CGI, which gives it a very great look. And of course, Doug Jones was the one under said makeup/prosthetics, just being creepy and stuff.

This movie has gotten some mixed reception. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 71% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 66/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,6/10.

“Crimson Peak” isn’t really one of Del Toro’s best, but it’s also not a bad movie. It has a somewhat interesting plot, really good acting, really good music, fantastic directing and cinematography, fantastic sets, and a really good final act. However it is dragged down a bit by some occasionally mediocre pacing and the characters not being that interesting. Time for my final score. OOOOOO, SPOOOOOKYYYYYY. My final score for “Crimson Peak” is an 8,55/10. So I’d say that it’s worth buying.
Worth buying

My review of “Crimson Peak” is now completed.

For the ladies (and possible men) out there, you do get some Hiddle-butt in this movie.

 

Series Review: The Man In the High Castle – Season 1 (2015)

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So here we are, back in the realm of Amazon’s Original Programming. Yeah, the very same Amazon that you can order shirts, soap and all kinds of stuff from. For the… one of you that didn’t know, Amazon is making original programming. Possibly one of my followers might remember that I did a review for season 1 of Amazon’s show “Bosch” last year. So yeah… they make shows… so let’s review one of them!

Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to… “The Man in the High Castle”.

The world has gone to shit (God, I’ve missed that phrase so much!). It’s the 1960’s and Nazis are in control. That’s right, in 1946 they took over the United States and also allied with Japan to rule over everything. We follow a young woman named Juliana (Alexa Davalos) as she is more or less pulled into a plot set up by the resistance to try to get a hold of some films that could change everything. And these films are produced by the mysterious… “Man in the High Castle” (Roll credits). We also get to follow a whole bunch of other characters, including Juliana’s boyfriend Frank (Rupert Evans), who are part of this world and have some part in the grand scheme of things. I know what you’re thinking, this plot sounds interesting, but complicated and maybe a little dumb. But trust me, I am just trying to give you the basics of the plot without spoiling it for you. So trust me when I should say that the story is fantastic and is worth experiencing. It is filled with gripping drama, engrossing situations and several clever twists. Also, the ending of the season (no spoilers) just fucked with my mind so hard. Yeah… it’s great plot.

The characters in this show quickly develop and you start caring about them pretty fast. Alexa Davalos (an actress I knew jack shit about before this show) was fantastic as Juliana. She was determined, strong but also the right level of vulnerable. Rupert Evans (you know, the guy from “Hellboy”) is fantastic as Frank, a man who is pulled into all of this trouble in a very violent fashion (figuratively speaking… ish). Then we have Luke Kleintank as Joe Blake, a young man that Juliana meets on her “adventure” and quickly befriends. Then we also of course have Rufus Sewell (remember when he was a thing?) as Obergruppenführer John Smith, AKA the American Nazi-man. And holy fucking shit, he was amazing in this show. Not only is his overall performance great, but the writer’s made me actually feel sympathy for him… a Nazi. It’s crazy, but true. He’s a great character. There are a whole bunch of other great actors in this show, both in big and small roles. So I’m not gonna go through ’em all as you will most likely notice them too while watching. Seriously, this show is filled with great people.

The score for the show was composed by Henry Jackman and Dominic Lewis and it is (surprise, surprise) pretty stellar. Henry Jackman of course is the man responsible for the music of “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” and it’s sequel “Civil War”, two movies with great music. So of course when I saw Jackman’s name in the opening credits I was pleased. Speaking of the opening credits, the decision to have “Edelweiss” from “Sound of Music” as the opening theme… fucking brilliant. Anyway, back to the original score; it’s great. Dramatic, tense, awesome.

Fun fact: This show is an adaptation of the novel of the same name by Philip K. Dick, the man who also wrote the book behind “Blade Runner”. Okay, fun fact over. This show is very well directed, perfectly capturing the feel of this bleak world that is set up. Sure, it isn’t really a show that has fast-paced direction, as it is more of a slow burn, but it’s still really good. Also, Ridley Scott is an executive producer on this show, which makes this his second Philip K. Dick adaptation… hmm. Oh well, it’s a very well done show, so those curiosities can be put aside for later.

This show has been very well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 95% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 77/100. And on imdb.com the show overall has a score of 8,1/10 (imdb doesn’t have season-based averages).

This show is unlike anything else I have ever seen, it’s so different and unique. With a fantastic plot, great characters/acting, fantastic music and great directing, it’s definitely something. Time for my final score. ACHTUNG! My final score for “The Man in the High Castle” is a 9,91/10. It is great and gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

My review of “The Man in the High Castle” season 1 is now completed.

Season 2 is confirmed, but it isn’t here… I need it NOW.