Movie Review: Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)

It is here. The movie that made me revisit the Raimi trilogy. It’s finally here. And it’s time to talk about it.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Spider-Man: Far From Home”.

As Peter Parker (Tom Holland) gears up to go on a European vacation with his classmates, he’s contacted by some familiar faces to help take care of some strong new enemies that have revealed themselves. But to be able to stop them, Peter has to team up with a mysterious guy named Quentin Beck (Jake Gyllenhaal). So now we have our Spidey-sequel. It’s part teen rom-com and part superhero story, and I feel like the two are blended quite well, which makes for a really enjoyable and breezy plot, which is kind of what we needed after the heavy shit in “Avengers: Endgame”. With how it jumps around Europe a lot it can feel a little jumpy, but I don’t think it ever ruined it in any way. There are some fun twists and turns in the plot that add a fair bit of nuance to the generally light and breezy proceedings (breezeedings?).

The characters are layered, flawed, colorful, fun, and overall interesting. Tom Holland returns as Peter Parker/Spider-Man, and in this movie he has to deal with the awkwardness of being a high school kid with a crush, while also having to step up as a hero in a world affected by the events of the last two “Avengers” films. He gets a fair bit of development here, making him even more interesting than he already was. And Holland is once again fantastic in the role. Next we have Jake Gyllenhaal as Quentin Beck/Mysterio. He’s a charismatic, interesting, and mysterious man who gets a fair bit of interesting motivation throughout. And Gyllenhaal is great in the role (can’t go wrong with a bit of Gyllenhaal, you know). We also get supporting work from people like Zendaya, Samuel L. Motherfu- I mean Jackson, Marisa Tomei, Jon Favreau, Jacob Batalon, Martin Starr, Angourie Rice, Tony Revolori, J.B. Smoove, and more, all doing very well in their respective roles.

The score for the movie was composed by Michael Giacchino, and it was really good. Sweeping, intimate, epic, emotional, it’s what one would look for in a “Spider-Man” score. It’s not the most original score out there, but it’s certainly enjoyable, and it works quite well within the movie itself. There are also a whole bunch of licensed tracks used throughout, and they all work quite well in their respective scenes.

As with “Spider-Man: Homecoming”, “Far From Home” was directed by Jon Watts. And I think he did a really good job with it. He certainly has a good sense of motion and energy in his directing, something shown in “Homecoming”, and explored further here. This lends to a lot of fun action scenes. Most of them are these, big, brash superhero things that one expects, but there’s also one or two that do some clever little things that I didn’t fully expect. There’s also a lot of comedy in this movie (which shouldn’t be much of a surprise if you’ve followed this movie universe for a while). And it’s funny, I laughed and chuckled.

This movie just came out, but has already been well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 93% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 69/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 8,2/10. Keep in mind, all these scores are at the time of writing, and will most likely change as time goes by and I’m too lazy to constantly edit this.

While I prefer its predecessor, “Spider-Man: Far From Home” is still a damn fine Spidey-movie, and another great entry within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It has a really good plot, really good characters, great performances, really good music, great directing/action, and funny humor. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Spider-Man: Far From Home” is a 9,50/10. So while it’s just on the edge, it’s still deserving of the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “Spider-Man: Far From Home” is now completed.

This has two of my favorite scenes of the year, and both for VERY different reasons.

Movie Review: Bad Times at the El Royale (2018)

I was gonna do a joke about a priest walking into a bar, but I couldn’t come up with a good punchline. So let’s just get into the review.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Bad Times at the El Royale”.

The late 1960s. On the border between California and Nevada lies the El Royale, a snazzy-looking motel. And on one fateful day, a group of strangers all decide to book rooms there, all of them carrying some secret. And we follow them as they get tangled up in the most insane night of their lives. The plot here jumps around a lot, partly in showing how all the characters got to the El Royale, and partly to show all the different perspectives on certain events that go down at the motel. And this could get messy and convoluted if put in the wrong hands. But I think that it was handled very well here. I like that they really took their time to tell this story. It’s intriguing, suspenseful, fun, pulpy, and just overall entertaining.

The characters here are colorful, unique, layered, flawed, and just overall really interesting. And that’s all you’ll get out of me. I won’t go any more in-depth on any of them, as that would be really tough without accidentally spoiling stuff. So let’s just list the cast. Jeff Bridges, Cynthia Erivo, Lewis Pullman, Jon Hamm, Dakota Johnson, Chris Hemsworth, Cailee Spaeny, all great in their respective roles.

The score for the movie was composed by Michael Giacchino, and it was really good. It does lean into the pulp angle I mentioned earlier, which really helps sell the movie’s vibe while still adding to the sense of tension and drama. There’s also a fair bit of licensed tracks used throughout, and not only are they really good on their own, but they also work incredibly well within their respective scenes.

“Bad Times at the El Royale” was written and directed by Drew Goddard, who I think did a great job with it. He gives the movie a very slick style that makes it feel somewhat unique, without sacrificing any of the pulpy suspense that is built up through the story, characters, and music. And the cinematography by Seamus McGarvey is pretty stellar, giving us some really great looking shots throughout the movie.

This movie has gotten some mixed reception. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 75% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 60/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,1/10.

“Bad Times at the El Royale” is something that I can easily tell will polarize audiences. But I thought it was great. It has a great plot, really good characters, great performances, great music, and great writing/directing/cinematography. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Bad Times at the El Royale” is a 9,71/10. So it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “Bad Times at the El Royale” is now completed.

Good times, bad times, you know I had my share…

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: War for the Planet of the Apes (2017)

It has come to this. From James Franco trying to use science to help people, to apes and humans having to reluctantly cooperate to survive… to a war. The end of an era.

Ladies and gentlemen… “War for the Planet of the Apes”.

When the ape colony faces a horrible tragedy, Caesar (Andy Serkis) has to go on the hunt for the army that caused this tragedy to get revenge. So now we have our ape-drama. That’s right, you heard me… ape drama. It’s not so much a straight-forward war movie as it is Caesar’s personal conflict, both against a physical threat and his own inner darkness. And this plot is tense, epic, intriguing, and emotional. Really, it’s pretty fantastic.

The characters here are all interesting as all hell, especially those we’ve gotten to know over several movies. Andy Serkis of course returns as Caesar, our portagonape. And you can tell that he’s in a much darker place here than in the previous movies. He’s struggling with his inner darkness, showing that he’s incredibly conflicted about his path of revenge. And that makes him insanely compelling. And Serkis is fucking fantastic in the role. Karin Konoval returns as Maurice, Caesar’s right hand orangutan. And Maurice is still a great character, the voice of reason. And Konoval is great in the role. Terry Notary returns as Rocket, another of Caesar’s closest pals. And he’s still a badass. And Notary is great in the role. Alright, new people time! First up, Woody Harrelson as The Colonel, a Colonel who’s a bit of a dick and is also the leader of the army that Caesar goes after. And while he at first can seem like a generic evil Colonel type character, you soon learn that he (and the other humans) are just desperate to survive. They don’t wanna be dicks, but they kind of have to so they don’t get wiped out. And Harrelson is great in the role. Then we have Amiah Miller as a little girl that Caesar and crew runs into during their journey. She can’t speak, but she is still quite interesting. And Miller is pretty damn good in the role. Then we have Steve Zahn as Bad Ape, a strange ape that Caesar and crew run into. He is meant to be a sort of conic relief character, which could go to shit very easily in such a dark and serious movie. But they manage to find the right balance of humor and emotion with him to make him fit in very well. And Zahn is great. Really, all the performances here are quite solid.

The score for the movie was composed by Michael Giacchino and it was pretty damn fantastic. You do get tracks that are the big badass bombastic battle brass ones, but you also get a good amount of tracks that are a bit more quiet for the moments that need something more intimate and emotional. And it all comes together to make a beautiful package that enhances the movie in every way.

The movie was directed by Matt Reeves, the man behind “Dawn of the Planet of the Planet of the Apes”. And once again, he knocked it out of the god damn park. His directing here is big and sweeping, but also tight and personal, never losing sight of the characters among some of the bigger moments. And while this isn’t a straight-up action movie, there are still a couple of action scenes in this movie. And they are big, badass, and intense. The movie is also quite brutal for a PG-13… just thought I’d mention that. And I don’t think I really have to talk about the visual effects, because you already know that they are absolutely incredible. These apes look real. I have trouble believing that this was done with computers, the amount of detail in the fur and movements combined with external effects looks so incredibly real… but this is CGI, and it’s some of the best CGI I’ve ever seen.

This movie has been very well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 93% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 82/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,5/10.

“War for the Planet of the Apes” is a fantastic movie, and solidifies this as one of the best trilogies ever. It has a fantastic plot, great characters, great performances, fantastic music, and amazing directing/cinematography/visual effects. Time for my final score. *APES!*. My final score for “War for the Planet of the Apes” is a 9,88/10. Which means that it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “War for the Planet of the Apes” is now completed.

Apes. Together. Strong.

Movie Review: Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)

Spider-Man, Spider-Man, rebooted often like no one can. Now with Marvel, he tries again. And have to fight the Batman. Look out… here comes the Reboot-Man.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Spider-Man: Homecoming”.

Set two months after “Civil War”, Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is back in New York, just trying to live his double life as a high school student and as Spider-Man. He also wants to prove himself to Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) to show that he too can be an Avenger. And as Peter is dealing with school, romance, and helping the community out as Spidey, a villain not called The Vulture (Michael Keaton) starts making a lot of trouble. And Peter sees this as the opportunity to really prove himself to Tony. So now we have our coming-of-age superhero movie. And I thought the plot here was great. You not only have the fast-paced parts of Spidey trying to figure who this Birdman (HA!) is and how he could stop him, but you also have slower moments developing the story of Peter Parker and how he deals with everything in his life. And I thought this was all really well handled. I felt invested in the plot, it really managed to have a good blend of superhero adventure and a John Hughes-ish coming-of-age dramedy. It was great.

The characters in this are fun, entertaining, and really interesting. Tom Holland showed in “Civil War” that he could be a really good Spidey (and Peter Parker), but his screen time was limited. Now that he has a full movie he really got the opportunity to show what he could do, and it paid off. Holland is fantastic as both Peter Parker and Spider-Man, showing both the relatable and dorky side known as Peter Parker, and the fun/cool hero that is Spider-Man. He does the one thing the two previous actors couldn’t: Perfectly portray both sides of the character. Michael Keaton as The Vulture was great. Usually the MCU has villains that are passable at best, but they really managed to make him interesting. They give him a backstory and some understandable motivation which just makes him so much more interesting than most of teh generic MCU villains. And Michael Keaton is fantastic in the role. Jacob Batalon plays Peter’s best friend Ned in this movie and he’s funny and charming. And Batalon is really good in the role, sharing some great chemistry with Holland. Marisa Tomei as Aunt May was great, she was fun and I really believed her as a mother figure to Peter. Robert Downey Jr. isn’t in the movie much, and when he is there he doesn’t steal the spotlight. He acts as a sort of mentor to Peter and gave us both some funny lines and some okay drama at times. And I don’t think I have to mention that he was great here… dude’s been doing this since 2008. Tony Revolori as Flash Thompson… yeah, he was great. I never thought he could play an asshole, based on his performance and overall appearance in “Grand Budapest Hotel”, but he played an asshole very well in this. Also, welcome back Happy Hogan! That’s right, Jon Favreau returned to play Tony’s assistant, this time acting more as Peter’s supervisor, and he was great. Alright, quickfire round of this movie’s great actors: Donald Glover, Bokeem Woodbine, Laura Harrier, Zendaya, Angourie Rice, Michael Chernus, Logan Marshall-Green, Martin Starr. Wow, that’s a lot of names. And there are more, but I don’t want to spoil them here in case you don’t already know about them.

The score for the movie was composed by Michael Giacchino, and can we just take a second to talk about this man… or machine as I’m inclined to believe that he is. He puts out like 50 billion scores a year… Jesus fucking Christ, man, take a break! Anyhow, his score for this movie was really good. It’s the usual big/fun superhero action stuff, but there are also tracks for smaller scenes throughout and that too sounds really good. There are also a bunch of licensed tracks used throughout this movie. And not only are they overall really good, but they are used very well in their respective scenes.

This movie was directed by Jon Watts, the man behind the very small but still really good “Cop Car”. And I think he did a great job directing this movie. His directing here has a lot of energy and charm to it, making for a pretty fast-paced and fun watch. And the shots do look really good. And the action scenes are pretty clever and really fun, and even a little more violent than I thought they’d be. And I don’t mean violent in the Marvel/Netflix way, but it packed a bit more punch than I was expecting. There’s also a lot of comedy in this movie and I laughed a lot. From simple chuckles to full on belly laughter, this movie brought the laughs. It’s also filled with fun easter eggs and references, both to the MCU and other properties, so have fun discovering them all.

This movie just came out, but it has so far been very well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 93% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 73/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 8,2/10.

“Spider-Man: Homecoming” is the best “Spider-Man” movie we’ve gotten since 2004. It has a great plot, great characters, great performances, really good music, great directing, and hilarious comedy. Time for my final score. *Thwip!*. My final score for “Spider-Man: Homecoming” is a 9,89/10. So it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “Spider-Man: Homecoming” is now completed.

Spidey is good again… I’m so happy!

Movie Review: Star Trek Beyond (2016)

Space: the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. Its five-year mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no man has gone before.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Star Trek Beyond”!

As the Enterprise goes out to explore an uncharted part of space it gets attacked by the villainous Krall (Idris Elba) and his followers, which makes the Enterprise crash on some unknown planet. So now Kirk (Chris Pine), Spock (Zachary Quinto), and the other people of the Enterprise have to team up with an alien woman named Jaylah (Sofia Boutella) to try to stop Krall and also find a way off the fucking planet. All of this makes for one hell of an entertaining plot. It’s a fun and fast-paced adventure that gives us an entertaining popcorn plot while also honoring the original series in a good way. Sure, this plot doesn’t exactly break any new ground, but it’s still pretty damn good.

The characters in this are al layered, interesting, and incredibly entertaining. Chris Pine is once again terrific as Kirk. Zachary Quinto once again knocks it out of the park as Spock. Karl Urban was once again fantastic as Bones, AKA my favorite character in this reboot series. Anton Yelchin (may he rest in peace) was once again great as Chekov. Zoe Zaldana was once again great as Uhura. John Cho was once again great as Sulu. Simon Pegg was great as Scotty. Okay, let’s just put it like this: Returning cast was great. I especially liked how they teamed up various characters in the movie that didn’t get too much time together in the previous two movies. My favorite of those was Spock and Bones, their back and forth was fantastic! Now, let’s talk about the newcomers. Idris Elba was great as Krall. At first he just felt like your typical scary alien villain, but during the third act (no spoilers) you learn moe about him and I thought he got a lot more interesting and compelling as the villain. Sofia Boutella was great as Jaylah, this alien woman that our heroes meets in the movie. Her character was interesting, funny, and badass… I really liked her. So in conclusion: It ‘s a great cast and they’re all giving great performances.

The score for the movie was (like in the previous two movies) composed by Michael Giacchino and once again it is great. Big, epic, and overall very well composed… it’s a great original score that perfectly fits the movie, not much else I can say about it. I’ll also say this, there’s a certain licensed track used in the movie in a really fun way, not gonna say what it is or how it was used, but let it be known that I thought it was quite awesome.

This movie was directed by Justin Lin (the man behind 4 of the 8 “Fast & Furious” movies) and I think he did a great job. The shots look great, and the action scenes are very well handled. The action scenes flow very well and they are just awesome! The visual effects once again look absolutely fantastic, and the the makeup/prosthetics are absolutely amazing! How “Suicide Squad” took the Oscar over this movie is just baffling.

This movie has been well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has an 84% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 68/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,1/10. The movie was also nominated for 1 Oscar in the category of Best makeup/hairstyling.

“Star Trek Beyond” is an incredibly fun summer blockbuster filled with good character moments while also honoring the original series. It features a great plot, great characters, great performances, great music, great directing, and great visual effects (CGI and practical). Time for my final score. *Gets beamed up to ship*. My final score for “Star Trek Beyond” is a 9,87/10. So it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “Star Trek Beyond” is now completed.

“In loving memory of Leonard Nimoy”.
“For Anton”.
Tears, man… tears.

Movie Review: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)

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Guys… motherfucking “Star Wars”! No clever intro needed!

Ladies and gentlemen… “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”.

Jyn Erso (Felicity Jones) is a young woman who has joined forces with the Rebellion to try to find the plans for the Empire’s new superweapon… the Death Star. That’s it really. Erso together with a ragtag group of rebels trying to get hold of the Death Star plans. And it’s a really good plot. There are a bunch of layers to it all, which I thought was a really cool aspect of it. The biggest flaw of the plot really is that it takes a little while to get going. There is a while in the beginning that sets up the story and characters and it’s a little slow. It’s not bad per se, I was entertained… but it’s worth mentioning to be quite honest. But everything after that setup… great stuff.

The characters in this movie are pretty interesting and they worked well for the movie. Felicity Jones did a really good job as Jyn Erso, playing this tough, determined, young woman that has a bit of a tragic past. Diego Luna was really good as his character, this Rebel captain that becomes part of Jyn’s group. Donnie Yen played Chirrut Îmwe, a blind man with a strong connection to the force. And he was really badass and gave us a really good performance. Wen Jiang plays Baze Malbus, Chirrut’s friend/sidekick and he was also really good. Riz Ahmed as Bodhi Rook was also really good. Alan Tudyk played K-2SO, a big droid. And he was so great, the character was so cool and so much fun. Ben Mendelsohn was really good as Imperial director Orson Krennic. He was a bit over the top, but in a way that actually really worked for the character. Forest Whitaker and Mads Mikkelsen are both really good too. Now, let’s get to the character everybody wonders about… Salacious B. Crumb. Nah, just kidding. It’s actually Darth Vader. Now, this can be considered a mild spoiler, but I also wanna get it out there. He isn’t in the movie very much, this isn’t a Darth Vader movie, don’t go in expecting a Darth Vader movie. He didn’t really have to be in the movie, but I’m still glad he was. His role may have been minor, but god damn… it was pretty awesome. Again, he was used VERY sparingly in the movie, so don’t expect fifty-five-billion Darth Vader scenes.

This is the first “Star Wars” movie not to be scored by the one and only John Williams. What’s interesting is that the movie was originally going to be scored by Alexandre Desplat, but he dropped out for some reason. So Michael Giacchino stepped up to the challenge. And it was really a challenge for him, he only had four weeks to score the movie. But despite that, he did a great job. Sure, there are a lot of familiar motifs throughout, but most of them are worked into some of Giacchino’s new tracks, and it all sounded absolutely terrific. The score was epic and it fit the movie perfectly.

This movie was directed by Gareth Edwards and I think he did a very good job. The movie had a lot of grit and intensity in it’s direction, which is something we haven’t seen really with previous “Star Wars” movies. What I also loved about his directing is the same thing I always praise about his “Godzilla” movie… you get a real sense of scale here. You really get to see a lot of size differences which really helps it all feel a bit more real. An example is (like we’ve seen in the trailer) how during a battle we get to see AT-ATs from the perspective of the people and how these machines look gigantic. Speaking of the battles, Jesus fuckin’ Christ, they are awesome! Again, there’s a lot of grit and intensity in the directing which makes the battles feel so much more grounded and badass. We not only get the ground battles, but also space battles… and those are really awesome too. You can tell that Edwards knew what he was doing when directing this. Which kind of segues into the visual effects, and all of them look amazing. Okay, there was one digital face thingy in the movie that looked a little off, but for the msot part the visual effects are amazingly good. There was also a surprising amount of humor in this movie. Really funny humor at that.

Any scores from review sites can and will change over time since the movie just came out. Anyway, on Rotten Tomatoes it has an 83% positive rating with a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 65/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 8,0/10.

“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” is another great part in this beloved franchise. It’s not the best “Star Wars” movie, but it’s still pretty damn good. It has a really solid plot, good characters, really good performances, great music, terrific direction/action, and amazing visual effects. The only problem was that the slow(ish) opening act. Time for my final score. Ah.. Star Wars! Nothing but Star Wars! Gimme those Star Wars.. don’t let them end! My final score for “Rogue One: A Star Wars” story is a 9,59/10. So it of course gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
seal-of-approval

My review of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” is now completed.

What’s this? An actual Star WAR? Holy shit.

Movie Review: Doctor Strange (2016)

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I know, I know. I said that I had reserved October for Spooky stuff and “Harry Potter”… but this is an exception I just had to make. I mean, it’s fuckin’ Marvel!

Ladies and gentlemen… “Doctor Strange”.

Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) is a brilliant but arrogant neurosurgeon. And one night he ends up crashing his car, completely fucking up his hands. So in search of ways to get them healed, Sephen finds himself going to Kathmandu where he meets a mysterious woman called The Ancient One (Tilda Swinton) who begins teaching Stephen about sorcery. And while the plot can feel a bit by the numbers, it still works as an interesting origin story while also opening up the more magical side of the MCU very well. I mean, I was invested throughout and I enjoyed seeing where the plot went next. Good shit.

The characters in the movie were for the most part interesting and entertaining. Benedict Cumberbatch was great as Strange, even if I got a bit of Tony Stark vibe from him. His American accent was a little bit distracting at first, but I quickly got used to it. Rachel McAdams was really good as Christine Palmer, colleague and love interest of Strange. Tilda Swinton as The Ancient One was a very controversial choice, since it’s a white person playing an originally Asian character. But to give credit where credit is due, I thought her performance was good. Chiwetel Ejiofor was really good as Mordo. Mads Mikkelsen was suitably intimidating as the villain Kaecilius.

The original score for the movie was composed by Michael Giacchino who seems to be everywhere these days when it comes to composing music for movies. And the score for this movie is definitely one of the best from any MCU movie. Sure, some tracks feature the typical bombastic stuff we’ve come to expect,  but there’s also a lot of new stuff going on here too. There are instruments being used throughout that I honestly haven’t heard from any previous MCU score. And I think it’s all pretty great, especially the end credits theme… that shit is great!

This movie was directed by Scott Derrickson, a man primarily known for horror. And I think he did a great job directing this movie. The scenes flow very well and the action scenes are really good. But I think that also works with a lot of the trippy magical stuff we get in this movie. There is a lot of world bending being done throughout, which makes this one of the most visually interesting movies this year, or at least in the MCU. And the visual effects in general look fantastic, with all spells and such looking perfectly integrated into the movie. Speaking of things that work well in the movie, there’s a lot of humor throughout that I thought was really funny. Even though I am aware that the MCU isn’t afraid of having some comedy in their movies, I didn’t expect there to be as muc as there was in this movie. It’s not as much as in “Guardians of the Galaxy”, but there’s more than I expected… and I like it.

Since this movie just came out, the scores will probably change a bit on the sites, so these are just the scores on the sties as I’m writing this review. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 93% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 74/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 8,1/10.

“Doctor Strange” is not absolutely perfect, but it’s a damn fine movie. It’s definitely one of the best solo movies in the MCU, in my opinion. It has a good plot, good characters, great acting, great music, great directing, amazing visual effects, and some real eye candy. Time for my final score. *Magic*. My final score for “Doctor Strange” is a 9,61/10. So it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
seal-of-approval

My review of “Doctor Strange” is now completed.

Finally… MAGIC!

Movie Review: Zootopipolis (2016)

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You might be slightly confused when you see the title of this post. You’re probably saying to yourself “It’s called Zootopia, ya dingus!”. Or if you’re in Europe you would say “It’s called Zootropolis, you wanker!”. Well since the internet can’t agree on which of those two titles it is, I decided that I would combine the two. We good? Good? Good.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Zootopipolis”.

Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) is a young, ambitious bunny who have just become the first ever bunny to get to be a police officer in the city of Zootopipolis. And on one of her first days she runs into a fox/con artist named Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman). And to cut a long story short, these two polar opposite characters have to work together to find a missing otter and uncover some kind of conspiracy that seems to be going on. First off, that’s a pretty damn interesting plot for a Disney movie in general. Secondly, I was genuinely surprised at the multiple layers the plot has. Not only is it a Disney mystery with fuzzy animals, but it’s also a movie about racism and prejudice and how that is a part of our society. So not only is this a fun adventure, but it also teaches good morals to kids and their parents alike. Good job, Disney… I didn’t expect that.

The characters in this movie are so interesting and so fun that it’s ridiculous. I mean, they’re not just there to say some fun stuff and deliver morals to kids, but they are overall very well rounded and well realized and they have lots of personality to them. Ginnifer Goodwin is really good as Judy Hopps, perfectly portraying this hopeful and really likable bunny. Jason Bateman as Nick Wilde is just buckets of fun. I’ve always kind of had a thing for con-man characters overall, but his voice work on the character is just perfect for him. And before we move on, the chemistry between Hopps and Wilde is actually pretty damn great. They have a lot of great banter between them and I totally believe the chemistry they have. But they’re not the only great ones in the movie. You have an angry police chief buffalo played by Idris Elba, a sly weasel played by Alan Tudyk, a lion-mayor played by J.K. Simmons, and even a hippie/yak played by Tommy Chong. Every character in this movie is great and every voice performance is also great.

The score for the movie was composed by Michael Giacchino and it’s pretty great. Every track that was composed for the movie perfectly works within the movie and sounds overall pretty great. We also got an original song by Shakira for the movie. And how is it? Eh. It’s fine, nothing really wrong with it. But I’m not gonna one day go “Oh man, I really wanna listen to that Zootopipolis song that Shakira did right now”. It’s fine. If you love it, awesome! But I’m not going crazy for it.

The animation in this movie is absolutely terrific, the movie realy is visually appealing. I would say that it especially shines in the action scenes we get throughout the movie. They are fast, fun, and just really well animated. And I also feel like I have to talk about the writing a little here too. Yes, I talked about how this movie has a layered plot with some good morals to teach… but it’s not some animal-based drama all the time. The movie has plenty of jokes throughout and I did laugh… a lot. There were plenty of funny lines said throughout the movie, a lot coming from the character of Nick Wilde. And I’m not gonna lie, there were a lot of jokes here that I honestly didn’t expect this type of movie to have. There were two especially that made me crack up quite a bit. I’m not gonna say what they were in case you have not seen the movie yet, but let me just say that as a movie/TV nerd… I loved them. Those who have seen it might’ve figured which I am talking about. So if you wanna talk about those, hit me up on twitter.

This movie has been very well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 98% positive rating with a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 78/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 8,1/10 and is ranked #191 on the “Top 250” list.

Guys, to tell you the truth… I was pleasantly surprised at how much I liked “Zootopipolis”. It has a surprisingly great plot, great characters, great voice acting, great music, great animation, and some really funny humor. Time for my final score. *WOOF!* My final score for “Zootopipolis” is a 9,85/10. So that means that it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
Seal of Approval

My review of “Zootopipolis” is now completed.

flash sloth