Series Review: Legion – Season 2 (2018)

Another year(ish) has passed, the season has wrapped up (in the US and here in Sweden at least), so now I can finally talk about the insanity that is “Legion” once again. If you haven’t seen the show or know nothing about it, go read my season 1 review, then go watch the show. This is not the jumping-on point.

Ladies and gents… “Legion” season 2.

Set a year after the first season, David (Dan Stevens) finds himself having to work with both his friends and an old foe to stop Farouk (Navid Negahban) from finding his old body, which would give him a lot of power. So the basic idea this season is a bit more straightforward compared to the first, since we know what the general goal of the characters is. Of course, “Legion” being “Legion”, its approach to telling this story isn’t as straightforward and normal as most shows. It’s still filled with weird, trippy shit that may just leave you confused at first, but will make a little bit more sense down the line. But through this strange journey we do get some solid drama, suspense, and intriguing storytelling. Is the narrative as strong as the first season? Not quite. It’s still damn good, but it’s not quite as tight as the first season since it’s trying to branch out into something bigger. The plot here is still damn good though.

The characters in this are weird, unique, colorful, and endlessly interesting. Dan Stevens returns as David, the trouble yet powerful young man at the center of the story. He already got some solid development over the first season’s run, and I’m happy to see that being a thing here as well. The journey we see David go through as a character is really fascinating and it really makes him such a deep and interesting character. And Stevens is once again fantastic in the role. Next we have Rachel Keller back as David’s girlfriend, Syd Barrett (*Insert Pink Floyd song here*). She has an interesting arc here that is based around David’s arc, with his affecting hers (keeping it vague is hard). And it’s interesting. We do also get some good backstory on her. And Keller is great in the role. Next we have Aubrey Plaza once again as Lenny, the mysterious old friend of David’s. Not gonna say anything else about her arc because it’s best left experienced. But it’s great. And Plaza is great. We also of course see the return of Bill Irwin, Amber Midthunder, Jean Smart, Jemaine Clement, Jeremie Harris, and Hamish Linklater, and all are still great in their respective roles. And newcomer Navid Negahban also holds his own as the smooth yet powerful and somewhat intimidating Farouk. Really, it’s a damn great cast.

Jeff Russo returned to do the score for this season, and he once again knocked it out of the park. His score is tense, trippy, surreal, emotional, and just overall works perfectly for the show. There’s also a ton of licensed music used throughout, and all the song work excellently in their respective scenes. The use of music in this show is just phenomenal.

Based on some Marvel comics from Bill Sienkiewicz and Chris Claremont, the show was created by Noah Hawley (who’s still the showrunner). And once again, the creative minds behind this show has crafted something truly unique. Let’s start with the visuals, because that’s what a lot of people will pick up on first. The way the show uses lighting, colors, creative camera angles, effects, and even aspect ratio to create a unique style helps make this show one of the most visually interesting I’ve ever seen. I thought season 1 had some great visuals, but this season brought that stuff to the next level. And the editing (which I almost never talk about) is also sublime. This show just has such a unique style that I’ve never really seen anywhere else.

This show/season has been well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 91% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 85/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 8,4/10 and is ranked #225 on the “Top 250 TV” list.

While not quite as amazing as the first season, “Legion” season 2 is still a great season of television. It has a great plot, really good characters, fantastic performances, fantastic music, and great directing/cinematography/effects/other technical things. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “Legion” season 2 is a 9,54/10. So it is still worthy of the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “Legion” season 2 is now completed.

Even if “Legion” would drop a bit in quality, I’d rather take it and its strange and unique kind of storytelling over most shows.

Movie Review: Dark City (1998)

You know how we all want weird, original movies? Yeah, sometimes that happens.

Ladies and gents… “Dark City”.

On a dark night, John Murdoch (Rufus Sewell) finds himself waking up in an apartment with a dead body, not remembering anything… not even who he is. So he starts going on a quest to find out who he is, what the hell is going on, and why these weird/pale/supernatural motherfuckers are chasing him. So now we have our twist-turny memory-altering noir. And I think this plot is great. The clever ideas about memories and and reality being messed with, combined with some really solid twists and turns throughout is what makes this plot so great. I know this explanation might seem a bit vague, but that is only intentional as I don’t want to spoil it too much. But trust me when I say this: I thought the plot here was great.

The characters are layered and interesting. Rufus Sewell is great as John Murdoch, playing him constantly on edge as he is chased when he’s trying to figure all this strange shit out. And can we just take a second to appreciate having Rufus Sewell in a leading role, ’cause it’s not every day we see that happening. Anyway, like I said, he’s great in the role. Jennifer Connelly plays Murdoch’s wife, Emma. As a character she’s trying to figure out what the hell is going on with her husband. And Connelly is really good in the role. William Hurt plays a detective that is trying to solve this whole Murdoch case, and he’s really good in the role. Kiefer Sutherland plays a weird scientist that is important to the plot in ways that I don’t want to to ruin here, but I can at least say that Sutherland was great in the role. Then we have the main three of the aforementioned pale/weird people, played by Richard O’Brien, Ian Richardson (R.I.P), and Bruce Spence. And they’re all great. Really, all actors in this movie do very well in their roles.

The score for the movie was composed by Trevor Jones and it was great. Dark, eerie, tense, epic, inspiring, and just overall very well composed. It perfectly worked for this dystopian sci-fi-noir-weirdness. Then there are also a couple of song covers in the movie, performed by Anita Kelsey, and they’re great. Yeah, this movie has some great music.

This movie was directed by Alex Proyas and I think he did a great job here. His directing is atmospheric and tense, keeping me invested and slightly on edge throughout most of the runtime. There are also a couple of action scenes in this and they are handled very well. They’re not the shooty-bang-bang types of action scenes, but instead relying on other types of action scenes. It’s difficult to discuss without spoiling it, but let’s just say that it’s some really solid stuff. I also feel like I have to mention that this movie just oozes atmosphere. From the directing, to the cinematography, to the art direction, to the set design… it is all a visual treat.

This movie has been pretty well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 74% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 66/100. Roger Ebert gave it 4/4 stars and put it on his “Great Movies” list. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,7/10.

“Dark City” is a great piece of science fiction-noir weirdness. It has a great plot, really good characters, great performances, great music, and directing. Time for my final score. My final score for “Dark City” is a 9,87/10. So it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.

My review of “Dark City” is now completed.

Why do I get a feeling that Christopher Nolan likes this movie?

“The Evil Within 2” Announcement Trailer!

Hello guys, hope you’re having a good day. Well, it’s that time of year again. The Electronic Entertainment Expo (more commonly known as E3) is currently going on and we’ve gotten some interesting trailers/reveals from it. So I’m gonna talk about them for the next couple of posts. So here we go.

The first trailer we’re talking about today is the announcement/reveal trailer for “The Evil Within 2”, the sequel to the 2014 horror game from game director Shinji Mikami. So what’s going on here? Well, first the story for the first game to give a little bit of context. Sebastian Castellanos (Anson Mount) is a police detective that gets sent with his colleagues Julie (Jennifer Carpenter) and Joseph (Yuri Lowenthal) to investigate a horrible massacre at an asylum.And when they get there they get dragged into a mindbending and quite fucked up adventure trying to stop an evil madman named Ruvik (Jackie Earle Haley). Now, onto the sequel. Sebastian (voice actor not confirmed) seems to get a report from Kidman (voice actor not confirmed) that Seb’s daughter (who we found out died), might actually be alive. So now he has to go on anotehr fucked up mission through the horrors of the mind. But the trailer not only reveals the existence of the game and reveals a little bit of plot, but there’s also a little bit of gameplay towards the end… and it looks like more of the first, which I’m okay with, because I really enjoyed the first game. And wait a minute, did they tease the return of the spider-lady from the first game? Oh shit. Now, will this game be able to scare me as much as the ninth chapter of the first game? Who the fuck knows. All I know is that this looks kind of creepy and mindbendy and yeah, I’m excited. “The Evil Within 2” is set to be released on Friday the 13th of October 2017… wait that’s this year, right in time for the “Month of Spooks”!

What are your thoughts? Are you excited for “The Evil Within 2”? And what did you think of the first game (if you played it)? Leave any and all thoughts in the comments.
Have a good one and enjoy the madness, I mean trailer!

Movie Review: Predestination (2014)

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Time. A very abstract concept that we are obsessed with. “How long is the movie?”, “What time is my doctor’s appointment?”, “What took you so fucking long?”. Pretty interesting stuff, especially when we start involving it in fiction and start messing with the ficitonal timelines.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Predestination”.

The story follows a temporal agent (Ethan Hawke) as he travels back in time to try to catch a very dangerous and elusive criminal. And without getting into spoilers, this is one of the most mind-bending and surprisingly compelling sci-fi plots that I have ever experienced. Really, the twists and turns throughout the movie really caught me off guard and truly fucked with my mind. Compelling, investing, clever, and thought-provoking… Yeah, I thought it was pretty great.

I was pretty quickly invested in the characters and I was endlessly interested/fascinated by them. Ethan Hawke is great as the main character, and I’ll just leave it at that. Sarah Snook was terrific as this person that Ethan Hawke meets in the movie, her character is also the most compelling one in the movie. Yeah, not much else to say here. NEXT!

The score for the movie was composed by Peter Spierig and it was really good. It was tense, dramatic, surprisingly emotional, and just overall fit the movie very well. Really can’t say much else here. It was a good score for the movie. Moving on!

This movie was directed by two brothers, Michael Spierig and Peter Spierig (Hey, Mr. Composer-man!). And the directing on display in this movie is really solid. For one, they really take their time with scenes and really let things simmer. There’s also a lot of suspense in their direction, making a lot of scenes really great, especially the parts when certain mindfucky things get revealed. Fun fact: The movie is apparently also based on a short story by Robert A. Heinlein, titled “All You Zombies”.

This movie has been pretty well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has an 84% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 69/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,5/10.

“Predestination” is one of the most surprisingly awesome movies that I have ever seen. It has a great plot, great characters, great performances, great music, and great directing. Time for my final score. *Travels in time to fetch envelope*. My final score for “Predestination” is a 9,80/10. Which means that it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
seal-of-approval

My review of “Predestination” is now completed.

Do you guys realize how difficult it is writing about a movie like this without ruining anything?

 

Movie Review: Donnie Darko (2001)

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Mindfuck stories! I love them. Mainly because they make you think. That is why I am such a fan of stuff like “Matrix” and “Inception”. But if you don’t like watching these types of movies because you have to use your brain for once, then you have nothing to be here for. Seriously, shoo! Go away! But you other people, you can stay. Today we are taking a look at a movie that is a mindfuck but also a cult classic.

Bunnies and Rabbits…”Donnie Darko”.

The story of the movie follows young man (high school student) Donnie Darko (Jake Gyllenhaal, also roll credits). He lives with his father (Holmes Osborne), his mother (Mary McDonnell), his older sister (Maggie Gyllenhaal, irony) and his younger sister (Daveigh Chase). Donnie is for the most part a normal guy. Except for the fact that he has a tendency to sleepwalk quite a long distance from his house. But one night when a jet engine suddenly bursts through his room (while he’s out because of sleepwalking) he then starts having visions of this large, creepy rabbit named Frank (James Duval). Frank makes Donnie lose touch with reality and commit crimes. Thing is…only Donnie can see him and he doesn’t know where he comes from. And that is where I stop because otherwise I will get into spoilers. This story is like I previously said…a mindfuck. It is complex, weird and…yeah, weird. That is really all that can be said. It is not your typical run-of-the-mill mindfuck. This is one that stands out in the crowd like a large, creepy rabbit at a carneval. This movie makes “Fight Club” look normal! Yeah, achieving that is pretty big in itself. But still, I really liked the complex story…worth thinking about.

The characters…ah yes. No one is normal really in this movie (Except maybe Donnie’s science teacher, played by Noah Wyle). Which makes them really interesting to watch. One thing that also makes them interesting to watch is that they are played by actors who know what the hell they’re doing. I especially felt invested in the character of Donnie, not only was his character very well-written, but Jake Gyllenhaal does one hell of a job playing him…he was excellent. But in general…every character was interesting in one way or another. But Frank creeps me out…a whole lot.

The music…creepy. That is all you need to know. Okay, that wasn’t really fair to you, but I don’t know what to say. It is creepy and cold…kind of like the overall tone of the movie. It fits perfectly for the overall creepiness of the entire movie. And the end theme…the song they play during the final scene…I love that song. I had heard it prior to seeing the movie…but hearing it in the movie made me so happy. Not gonna spoil the scene itself…just saying…search “Gary Jules – Mad World”…you’ll see why I love it and think it’s so beautiful.

The camera work in the movie is excellent. It looks incredibly good and always makes a scene interesting. Richard Kelly did a great job with it. Also…what kind of sick motherfucker would come up with the design of Frank…it is terrifying…STOP!

Now for the reception “Donnie Darko” got. It was overall good reception. It first debuted on the Sundance Film Festival and got a lot of praise there. Then it came to regular cinemas and got even more praise there. Rotten Tomatoes has a “Fresh” cerftification and an 85% positive rating for it. Metacritic has 71/100 as their score for it. Fun thing: Roger Ebert gave it 2,5/4 stars in his original review  but raised it to 3/4 stars on his review of the director’s cut version 3 years later. And imdb.com has the score of 8,1/10 for it and has it ranked #193 on the Top 250 list.

My opinions on a few aspects of the movie are given. It is clever, complex and creepy (The 3 C’s). My final score is a 9,56/10 and a recommendation to buy in combination with the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
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I thoroughly enjoyed “Donnie Darko” and highly recommend it.

Review of “Donnie Darko” is completed.

Still can’t believe I found a movie that makes “Fight Club” look normal.

Movie Review: Fight Club (1999)

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You know how many mainstream movies get so much love from a ton of people who will then try to decapitate you if you say anything bad about it? It happened to me once when I gave a little negative comment on “The Avengers”. Some if not most of these movies are usually hit-ot-miss. Either you love it, or you hate it. This movie has been on my watchlist for quite some time now and I finally decided to sit down and watch it. This is one of the most popular movies of all time.

Men and women…”Fight Club”!

The movie follows an insomniac office worker simply credited as “The Narrator” (Edward Norton). He is not very happy with his life. Why? He can’t fucking sleep, that’s why. He thinks it is because he does the same stuff all the time. So he joins a support group for testicular cancer (even though he have not conducted that disease). In there he meets his new friend Robert “Bob” Paulsen (Meat Loaf). Bob got his testicles removed because of the disease and have become more feminine. He became so feminine in fact that he *sigh*…grew boobs. But the Narrator likes this support group thing since it helps him cry which apparently helps him to get sleep. So he starts attedning even more of them. Everything goes fine and dandy…until the chain smoking woman Marla Singer (Helena Bonham Carter) starts attending them and it just fucks everything over for the Narrator. He confronts her and they make a deal about who will attend which support groups. Oh and on every group, the Narrator chooses a different name, like Cornelius…yeah. But a while later on a plane, he meets this strange man Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt). And he IS weird, I mean…he talks about how to make napalm with regular household products. But when the Narrator after the flight finds out his apartment was blown up…he calls for Marla, but she does not want him in her place. Then he tries calling Durden, and gets no answer. Then suddenly, the payphone rings…and he answers it. And guess who it is, it’s motherfucking Tyler Durden. These two guys talk and decide to go out for a beer. Then the Narrator asks if he could stay with Durden. And he can, on one condition: He have to hit Durden as hard as he can. Of course he questions why he has to do that, yet he does it…on Durden’s fucking ear. Then he hits him back…and they start fighting. After the fight they decide to start doing this little fight thingy again. Then we come to Durden’s house. A rotten-ass house it sure as hell is. Things seem like they can break at any second and it is just the worst fucking place ever. Believe me, you would not like to live in that place. It’s a good ol’ shithole. Remember earlier when I said the “do the fight thingy again”? Yeah they do that and get quite the audience…which later turns into a big sort of underground Fight Club. Now, all this does not sound like simple plot, ’cause it ain’t. This movie and its plot is just to me…perfect. Throughout the movie, it gets more complex and I fucking love that. The more complex a plot is, the more I will probably enjoy it…I love complex thinky stuff. Also, this movie is very brutal…just sayin’. So if you’re squeamish…yeah.

The characters of “Fight Club” are odd, flawed and complex. And in my book that is something good. They are very varied in style. For example, the Narrator is…well he is like every Edward Norton character ever…intelligent but very troubled and even a little fucked in the head. Tyler Durden is a mystery with a leather jacket and a pack of cigarettes, he is complex and just so damn entertaining. Then we have Marla…who is a nutjob who chainsmokes. But she is like everyone else in this movie…complex as all hell. Even though she is not nearly as complex as let’s say the Narrator or Tyler Durden. But still complex in her own way. I mean, she has to be complex…she is Helena Bonham Carter…she has more layers than a three foot cake.

The music is just fucking fantastic. At a lot of points it is dark and chilling, like a lot of parts of this movie. But at some points it can be quite light hearted, for the more light hearted parts that is. But in general, I love the soundtrack for “Fight Club” since it fits so well for this strange/weird movie.

Remember when I said this was brutal? Well, it is. Too brutal for a whole lot of people I would assume…but I don’t fucking care, the fight scenes may be brutal, but they are still very well choreographed and shot. Speaking of how scenes are shot, this movie is very well directed and incredibly well shot! This movie is one of the most good looking ones I have ever seen. Also, the action scenes doesn’t use unnecessary shaky cam…and I love that, you can actually see what’s going on.

Reception for “Fight Club” was incredibly mixed. A ton of people loved the shit out of this, and some hated it. This is probably one of the most, if not the most, debated movies ever. Rotten Tomatoes holds the rating of 80% on this and have certified it “Fresh”. Metacritic gave this movie the rating of 66/100. Roger Ebert wasn’t the biggest fan of this, giving it only 2/4 stars. He said it was

“Beloved by most, Not me”

imdb.com has the rating of 8,9/10 on this and it is ranked #10 on their Top 250 list.

I have thrown out some major stuff on this very beloved movie simply known as “Fight Club”. And now I will give it my score…*Takes deep breath* I am giving this the 10/10 rating. This movie is to me…fucking perfect. Everything from the story, to the characters/acting, to the music, to the…EVERYTHING! This gets the “Seal of Approval”. This movie is a must buy! For any movie lover and anyone who likes movies in general! This is now my all time favorite movie of all time.

“Fight Club” is now at last…reviewed.

It’s kind of ironic that I talked about this movie when the firs rule of it is…HEY!