Movie Review: Blood Red Sky (2021)

Welcome back. Time for more Month of Spooks content. So let’s just get into it.

Ladies, gents, and non-binaries… “Blood Red Sky”.

When a group of terrorists hijack a transatlantic flight, Nadja (Peri Baumester) does everything she can to make sure she and her son make it through the night, even if it means embracing a dark secret she’s been harboring for years. So it’s basically “Die Hard”, on a plane, but with a supernatural twist. And for a lot of the runtime they play around with that in a fun way, finding interesting ways of constantly escalating the predicaments of the characters. But I will say that I didn’t fully love it, and one of the reasons for that is pacing. This movie, despite having a fair few set pieces, feels really slow, really dragging its ass at times. And while a slow pace, if done well, can lead to a creeping tension, that’s not what happens here. When shit’s going down, it’s fun, but otherwise this is a bit of a slog.

The characters in this are fine. I enjoyed some of them, and others were just… meh. They try to give a little depth to a few of them, and those characters are probably the most enjoyable.  At least the cast is consistently solid, featuring people like Peri Baumeister, Carl Anton Koch, Graham McTavish, Kais Setti, Alexander Scheer, Dominic Purcell, Roland Møller, and many more.

The score for the movie was composed by Dascha Dauenhauer, and I thought it was good. Some sad strings, some heavy horror hits, the usual fair for a lot of spooky movies like this. I don’t know what else to say, it’s a perfectly passable score that works for the movie, even if it doesn’t stand out in any real way.

“Blood Red Sky” was directed and co-written by Peter Thorwarth for Netflix, and I think he did a solid job with it. The man has a good eye for composition, and his action scenes are well put together. I even think that when things are properly going down, he has a great sense of energy and momentum. If only the script or final edit was tighter, then we’d have a cracking thrill ride on our hands. But as it stands, this is still solidly put together, with some really good action. There’s even a bunch of really solid practical gore and makeup effects, so that’s nice.

This movie’s gotten some mixed reception. On Rotten Tomatoes it has an 80% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 43/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6.1/10.

While it does feel a bit too long and slow at times, “Blood Red Sky” is a perfectly enjoyable little horror flick. It has an alright story, okay characters, really good performances, okay music, and really solid directing/effects. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Blood Red Sky” is a 6.78/10. So while flawed, I’d still say it’s worth a watch.

My review of “Blood Red Sky” is now completed.

Ich bin ein flugzeug

Movie Review: Mission Impossible 2 (2000)

Here we are, the second part in my “Mission Impossible” review series leading up to “Mission Impossible: Fallout” in August. So let’s get into it.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Mission Impossible 2”.

When a rogue agent (Dougray Scott) gets hold of a deadly virus, it is up to Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) to try to stop him from doing some bad stuff with it. So we go from a complex spy plot to a simple save the world plot. And I’m fine with that… for the most part. On one hand, sometimes you just need a “hero trying to stop a villain from doing bad shit”, and when it focuses on that it’s actually fun. But on another hand, this movie can be quite boring. The first half to be a bit more exact, as it meanders a bit too much for my taste. But when the second half kicks in, we get the fun, fast-paced, and focused action plot that we want. So overall this plot is… fine.

The characters in this are… well, they are… how do I put this… flat-ish. The first movie had tons of good character development, and this… doesn’t. Tom Cruise of course returns as IMF agent Ethan Hunt, and unlike being a vulnerable and interesting character, in this he’s kind of like James Bond. He went from a complex character to a badass archetype. And while he can be fun to watch, I feel like something’s kind of missing here. Oh well, at least Tom Cruise is really good in the role. Next we have Dougray Scott as the villain, Sean Ambrose. He’s not one of the greatest villains of all time, but he works quite well for the story being told, being an enjoyable foil for Ethan. And Scott gives a really good performance. Next we have Thandie Newton as Naya, a thief that Ethan recruits for the mission (impossible) and even falls in love with. She feels less like a fully realized character and more like a somewhat generic love interest/prop. But she does get some decent enough moments throughout to make her feel somewhat useful. And Newton is good in the role. Then we get supporting performances from people like Ving Rhames, Anthony Hopkins, Richard Roxburgh, John Polson, Brendan Gleeson, and Rade Serbedzija, all doing okay in their respective roles.

The score for the movie was composed by Hans Zimmer, and it’s pretty good. It uses an interesting blend of orchestrations, acoustic guitar, and slightly distorted electric guitar to create some pretty cool sounds. It actually helps to make some bits a bit more exciting. As for the theme by Limp Bizkit… it’s actually okay when there are no vocals, as the instrumentals are fairly competent.

This movie was not directed by Brian De Palma, but was instead helmed by John Woo. And I think he for the most part did a good job. The shots look good and he does make the edit quite interesting. And when we actually get to the action scenes Woo shows his true colors… and man, that is a good thing. The action scenes in this are fast-paced, badass, brutal (for PG-13), and tons of fun. Say what you want about his pigeon fetish, but you can’t deny that Woo knows how to handle action sequences.

This movie has gotten a lot of mixed reception. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 57% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 59/100. Roger Ebert gave it 3/4 stars. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,1/10.

“Mission Impossible 2” is a mixed bag of things, but ultimately works if you want some enjoyable action. It has an okay plot, meh characters, really good performances, really good music, and great directing. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Mission Impossible 2” is a 7,01/10. So while very flawed, it’s still worth a rental.

My review of “Mission Impossible 2” is now completed.

SLOW-MO PIGEONS DUAL-WIELDING PISTOLS.

Movie Review: Blade: Trinity (2004)

775245526

You know what is funny about today’s review? It is one that takes part of two different “series” of things at once here on my blog. First off, it of course takes part in “The Month of Spooks”. Secondly, it finishes off my series of “Blade” reviews. So basically I am taking out two birds with one stone… How MARVELous.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Blade: Trinity”.

So after being suspected of murder, Blade (Wesley Snipes) is now wanted by the FBI. And at the same time he has joined forces with a group called “The Nightstalkers” to take care of the other problem that Blade currently has in his life. What is that problem? Dracula (Dominic Purcell) has awoken and has to be defeated. Now this actually sounds like it could make for a pretty cool movie. However it basically turns into self-parody and it isn’t very good. Look, I’ve seen far worse executions of plots in movies before, but this is still far worse than the previous movies in the series. It is plain mediocre, even on the edge of becoming bad.

Wesley Snipes is as great as ever as the titular main character. Kris Kristofferson is great as usual. Then we have the new additions that we should talk about. First off I will take Ryan Ryenolds as Hannibal King… he’s fine. He could have been much worse, what makes him less than he could’ve been is the mediocre writing and most of the jokes they give to this quipping son of a bitch. But I guess his performance overall is fine. Next is Jessica Biel as Whistler’s daughter, Abigail. And she is… meh. I’ve never seen her as a great actress and this movie doesn’t really help her case. I have seen worse, but she isn’t that great in the movie. And the final one I wanna talk about is Dominic Purcell as Dracula, or “Drake” as they call him in the movie. I wanna say first off that I found it weird that they cast Purcell as the Lord of the Vampires in this movie. Don’t get me wrong, I think he’s a pretty good actor (“Prison Break”, anyone?). But here I jsut think he was miscast. I guess he does a fine job with the material he has been given, but I really don’t feel him as the right casting choice in this movie. The acting overall in the movie I would say is fine.

The music for the movie was provided by composer Ramin Djawadi and Wu-Tang Clan member RZA. Now this actually sounds like a cool matchup: The guy who gave us the music to “Prison Break” and “Pacific Rim” together with the guy who did the music for the “Kill Bill” movies. And I have to say that it is really good. As in the first two movies the music is a mix of hip-hop, electronica and aggressive rave music. But they also added in a few orchestral tracks to the mix and it’s actually really good. It fits the movie’s stylish ways and cool action while just being overall great.

This is the second time we switch directors in this franchise and for this one they got David S. Goyer who wrote the first two movies. And while the movie looks great with a lot of cool directing, this is a case of vision gone meh. What I mean is that this movie has the “Style over substance” problem where they focus more on stylish action scenes and badassery rather than a coherent and good plot. But like I said, the action in the movie is really good and entertaining and the visual effects are great as well. So there are a few redeeming features in this movie.

This movie has not been very well received. In fact, people (and critics) did not seem to like this at all. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 25% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 38/100. Roger Ebert gave the movie 1,5/4 stars. And on imdb.com it has a score of 5,9/10.

“Blade: Trinity” is not a very good movie. The plot is borderline bad, the acting is fine, the music is really good, the directing is good, the action is awesome and the visual effects are great. Time for my final score. Fucking Vampire Pomeranian. My final score for “Blade: Trinity” is a 6,90/10. While not good, it’s still worth renting.
Rent it

My review of “Blade: Trinity” is now completed.

I am now finally done with these movies.