Movie Review: The Road (2009)

ws_the_road_01_1280x1024

On the road again
Just can’t wait to get on the road again…

Ladies and gentlemen… “The Road”.

The world has gone to shit. Everything has turned into a fucking wasteland. And in this horrible place we follow a man (Viggo Mortensen) and his son (Kodi Smit-McPhee) as they wander around, trying to survive as well as make it to the coast. And that’s it. No bigger conspiracy, no trying to figure out a way to fix the country, no zombies… just a man and his son trying to survive. That said, it’s still a very layered and interesting plot. Sure, the basic premise is very simple, but there’s still a lot of suspense and drama throughout the runtime that makes for an absolutely enthralling plot.

The characters in this movie are flawed, damaged, and really interesting. Viggo Mortensen is fantastic as the father, playing him as this stubborn and suspecting man that is very protective of his son. Kodi Smit-McPhee was great as the son, perfectly playing this vulnerable, curious, and kind of naïve little boy. We also get Charlize Theron in a bunch of flashbacks throughout the movie, and she is great in those scenes. Also, don’t be fooled by the big name actors whose names appear on the posters, they all appear in the movie very briefly. Sure, they all do a great job in the movie, but none of them are in it particularly long. That said, it was pretty cool seeing people like Robert Duvall, Garret Dillahunt, Guy Pearce, and Michael Kenneth Williams in here.

The score for the movie was composed by Nick Cave & Warren Ellis and fuck me, it is fantastic! There was never any doubt about to be honest, but it’s always fun to be right. It’s dramatic, haunting, emotional, tense, and just overall very well composed. It really fit this movie perfectly.

This movie was directed by John Hillcoat and I think that he did a great job with it. His directing is deliberately slow-paced and perfectly captures the feeling of the source material. That’s right, for those that didn’t already know… this is an adaptation of a book. It’s based on “The Road” (surprising, I know), which was written by American author Cormac McCarthy. And as someone that has read the book, I can safely say that the world I got in my head when reading the book got perfectly translated to the screen. The directing, cinematography, the feeling of unease… all of those things are present in this movie. I also want to mention that there is some slightly disturbing imagery in this movie… just so you know.

This movie has been pretty well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 75% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 64/100. Roger Ebert gave the movie 3,5/4 stars. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,3/10.

“The Road” is not only a great adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s novel, but it’s also an overall terrific movie. It features a great plot, good characters, great performances, fantastic music, great directing, and great cinematography. Time for my final score. *Cough*. My final score for “The Road” is a 9,88/10. Which means that it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
seal-of-approval

My review of “The Road” is now completed.

Yep, this movie is as depressing as the book… greeeaaat.

 

Movie Review: X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)

x-men-apocalypse-2

I have been a pretty big fan of Marvel’s mutant franchise for most of my life. It all started with the cartoon “X-Men: Evolution”, and then I of course started watching the movies. And the rest is history. So I am of course always excited when a new one of these is about to be released. So let’s see if this was another hit.

Ladies and gentlemen… “X-Men: Apocalypse”!

Ancient mutant En Sabah Nur (Oscar Isaac) has awoken from his really long slumber and is recruiting various mutants to join him in destroying the world and rebuilding it into something different. So it’s up to Professor X (James McAvoy), Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), Beast (Nicholas Hoult), and a bunch of other mutants to stop him before everything goes to shit. Sounds pretty standard from that outlook, but it is far more interesting than that. The only real flaw with the story is that it takes a while to actually grab the viewer and get them invested. But after about 20 – 30 minutes we get a scene involving Magneto (Michael Fassbender) which truly helps kick off the story and increase the drama. And after that I felt that the plot worked very well throughout, featuring some truly great storytelling. Again, it’s those first minutes that take a while to get going as they only act to set up characters and the plot. But after that… shit gets good!

The characters in this movie are really interesting. James McAvoy as Professor X once again knocked it out of the park, he is so great in this movie. Michael Fassbender as Magneto, fucking amazing, especially since he actually gets a few pretty damn emotional moments. And the interplay between these two main characters is just as great as ever. Jennifer Lawrence was good as Mystique, you could tell that she was phoning it in a little bit, but overall her perforamance was good. Nicholas Hoult was great as Beast. Rose Byrne (welcome back), was really good as Moira MacTaggert. Evan Peters as Quicksilver… he was just awesome, like in “Days of Future Past”. I’d even argue that he’s even better in this movie since he gets more to do and has more of a purpose in this story. So now let’s talk about the newcomers. Sophie Turner was really good as Jean Grey, I am glad that she got to shine a bit in this movie with some scenes/moments that requires the actor to be able to portray anger and distress in a movie, and she nailed it. Tye Sheridan played Cyclops in this movie and I thought he was really good. And I’m not just saying that because I’m a fan of Sheridan, but I am saying it because he was genuinely good in the role. And to answer your questions, yes I am really a fan of the guy. Kodi Smit-McPhee played Nightcrawler in the movie, and that is something I was really interested in because Nightcrawler is my favorite mutant. And I am happy to say that the guy was really good in the role. Then finally, let’s talk about Oscar Isaac as En Sabah Nur, or Apocalypse as he’s more known as. Oscar Isaac is one of the best actors of the modern generation, so I was very excited when he was cast in the role. And how was he? At first his performance felt a little odd, not exactly something that I’d say was great. But then as the movie went on I got more used to it and I’d even argue that his performance got a better over time. And as a villain in general I thought Apocalypse was fine, he was suitably intimidating and badass.

Like in the previous movie, the score was composed by John Ottman who also did the editing on the film. But how was his score for the movie? Good. It’s, bombastic… the stuff you’d expect from this type of huge superhero movie. Not to say that it’s bad, I’m just saying that it doesn’t take any big or unique or unexpected turns. But it’s good. And there are a few licensed tracks in the movie as well that caught my attention, mainly because of how cleverly they were put in the movie.

This is the fourth “X-Men” movie to be directed by Bryan Singer. And I think that he once again did a great job. The shots look good and the action is very well directed. Speaking of action, there are two action scenes in this movie that just blew me away. One of them is one I won’t spoil in case you have managed to avoid trailers and/or spoilers and haven’t seen the movie yet. But let me tell you… it’s brutal and badass. The other one… remember Quicksilver’s awesome scene from “Days of Future Past”? Yeah, it’s like that but even better. And the visual effects in the movie look great. Sure, at times there a fuckload of it and you know it… but I never thought it detracted from the movie at all… stuff looked great.

This movie has gotten some truly mixed reception. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 48% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 52/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,2/10.

I honestly don’t understand all the hate that “X-Men: Apocalypse” has gotten. Is it the best “X-Men” movie? No. But it’s still a damn fine movie. With a good plot, great characters, great acting, good music, great directing, great action, and some great visual effects. The only drawback is those first 20 – 30 minutes that kind of drag on. Time for my final score. *Cough*. My final score for “X-Men: Apocalypse” is a 9,40/10. It’s not perfect, but it’s still definitely worth buying!
Worth buying

My review of “X-Men: Apocalypse” is now completed.

Feel thy name extermination
Desecrating, hail of fire
So we cross that line
Into the crypt
Total eclipse
Suffer unto my apocalypse!

Movie Review: Slow West (2015)

Slow-West-Sakin-Batı

I don’t think there’s a point for me to even do some kind of intro when I review a western, because you guys already know that I am a western fanboy. But in this case I still feel like I should do one to mention how fun it is to see that there are still westerns being released. Sure we have gotten some real stinkers in recent years like “The Lone Ranger” and “Jonah Hex” (I feel sick just mentioning those pieces of shit). But I do still have hope that a western might be good/might entertain me. So let’s see if this one is any good.

Ladies and gents… “Slow West”.

So in this movie we follow young, Scottish man Jay Cavendish (Kodi Smit-McPhee) who have traveled to America to find his beloved girl named Rose (Caren Pistorius). Of course he doesn’t have the easiest time doing this on his own, but luckily he runs into an outlaw named Silas (Michael Fassbender) who is willing to help Jay find Rose. And from that we get a very unique western with a very well told and entertaining plot. The plot touches a lot on the themes of love, right & wrong and a lot of other things that I didn’t expect from it which is something that makes me appreciate a lot more. I also like how the plot has a slight sense of dark humor to give it a very fun style/mood. In conclusion, I liked the plot a whole lot.

The characters in this movie all evolve pretty well and are consistently entertaining. Kodi Smit-McPhee gives a terrific performance as this young, inexperienced yet determined man. Michael Fassbender is terrific as he always is, playing a rough  and badass outlaw who still has a little bit of a conscience. Caren Pistorius who pops up now and again throughout the movie in flashbacks and such is great as well. And I have to touch on Ben Mendelsohn as an outlaw named Payne who appears in this movie… he’s fucking great. That’s it, I have nothing else to say about that.

The score for the movie was composed by Jed Kurzel and I think he did a great job with it. I would say that it is very “Wes Anderson-ish” in style. If you have seen some of Wes Anderson’s movies you know what I’m talking about. Sort of quirky and whimsical but still done in a way where it could be used in a serious way. Does that makes senese? No? Well, I still thought it was great and fit the movie very well.

Since this is a western I have to do this thing where I touch on the shooty-bang-bang parts of the movie. And I do think they are great. Sure, they are kind of few and far between, but this is also a pretty short movie, so I’d say that it’s just proportined to the running time. And like I said, when the shootouts happen, they are pretty damn great. SImple, but effective.

This movie was the directorial debut of John Maclean and I think that he did a fantastic job directing the movie. The shots are steady and it is gorgeously shot. Of ocurse I then have to give some cred to cinematographer Robbie Ryan because the cinematography in this movie looks fantastic. And I like how they used actual environments when they filmed and not jsut some generic green screen soundstage. A lot of cred should be given to the crew of this movie.

This movie has been pretty well received by people and critics. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 92% positive rating and a “fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 73/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,0/10.

“Slow West” is a very traditional western that still does a lot of unique things with it’s story while also having interesting & entertaining characters, great music, great shootouts and fantastic directing. Time for my final score. *Bang Bang*. My final score for “Slow West” is a 9,87/10. It definitely gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

My review of “Slow West” is now completed.

In one scene he goes from Michael Fassbender into Michael Fassbendrunk.