Movie Review: Sin City: A Dame to Kill For (2014)

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Time to return to the world of comic books! Or to be more precise, graphic novels… but you get my point. You might remember that last year I reviewed the original “Sin City” and really liked it a lot. So now it is time to review the sequel. Will I like it as much as the original? Let’s have a look.

Ladies and gentlemen… “Sin City: A Dame to Kill For”.

On a quick sidenote, there will be some minor spoilers from the original “Sin City” in here, so tread carefully if you haven’t seen it.

Once again we have three separate storylines featuring some characters. Let’s start with the main one, the one that the movie is named after (A.K.A. “A Dame to Kill For”). This story is a prequel to the first movie and follows Dwight (Josh Brolin). He has tried to put his violent past behind him and now works as a private detective. But his past comes haunting him as he gets involved with his old lover/girlfriend Ava Lord (Eva Green). And I’m not gonna say more about it because that would be jumping into spoilers. The sad part is that despite this being the main story, it is the least interesting. I felt like it dragged on longer than it had too and it was overall not very interesting, especially since it had a few weird side-plots that were a little unnecessary.
Next up is the plot called “Nancy’s Last Dance” which follows the character of Nancy Callahan (Jessica Alba). Also, this is where we got some minor spoilers for the first movie so… stop reading if you haven’t seen it. Anyway, this is set after the first movie and follows Nancy a longer while after John Hartigan’s (Bruce Willis) death. So now Nancy is a drunken stripper planning revenge against the man who caused Hartigans’ death. And that man is none other than Senator Roark (Powers Boothe). And this segment I thought was really good. So it is a little sad that this is the shortest segment out of all. But in this Nancy is a broken mess with some psychological issues and that makes for some interesting watching.
The final one is “The Long Bad Night” that is about newcomer Johnny (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a really lucky/skilled poker player who gets in over his head when he wins a game against… Senator Roark. Apparently Roark is everybody’s favorite target. Anyway, this segment might be my favorite one out of all three. It is suspenseful, it is funny and it is just really well executed. Interesting how the segment about a new character is the one I enjoyed most.
And if you’re wondering… yes, Marv (Mickey Rourke) has a segment too. A really short one in the beginning of the movie. But for the most part he plays a big(ish) part of all other segments.

All characters are interesting in some way. And all performances were really good… except for one, but I’ll get to that. Josh Brolin as Dwight was great, Jessica Alba as Nancy was great too which is really cool because she wasn’t that interesting in the first movie. Joseph Gordon-Levitt was also great as Johnny. And it was awesome seeing Mickey Rourke once again kick tons of ass as Marv. And Powers Boothe as Senator Roark was one of the most badass villains ever, I loved him in this movie. However, the one performance which was the worst, not bad, just not as good as all other ones was theo ne of Eva Green. And that is weird because she was one of the actors I had the most faith in, but here she just didn’t really fit too well as her character.

The soundtrack for the movie was done by Robert Rodriguez (Sidenote: Also the director of the movie) and Carl Thiel. And once again the music was really good and fit perfectly in the movie. It was badass, it was cool and it was just overall great.

This movie is as visually spectacular as the first one with it’s unique style of “black and white with some occasional color”. It looks great and it still helps hold the movie up a bit. The direction overall was great. And the action was just as brutal and violent as it was in the first movie. And that also means that the action was just as fun as in the first movie… especially when Mickey Rourke is involved. I can’t help it, he is awesome!

This movie was not very well-received, it was even a bit of a box office flop. Anyway, on Rotten Tomatoes it has a 43% positive rating. On Metacritic it has a score of 46/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,6/10.

Despite having a main plot that is not very interesting and a weak(ish) performance from Eva Green, I can’t deny the fun I had with “Sin City: A Dame to Kill For”. Most stories were great, most performances were really good, teh music was great and the gritty, brutal and unique visuals are as awesome as ever. Time for my final score. *Grunt* My final score for “Sin City: A Dame to Kill For” is an 8,95/10. I do think it is worth buying.
Worth buying

Review of “Sin City: A Dame to Kill For” is done.

I don’t know what else to say.

 

My Top 13 Action Movies

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Hello, hello, hello! Nice to have you here, my friends! Let’s start by saying thank you to you guys who have been sticking around for my weird shenanigans for a longer period. Not mentioning any specific names because… well, I don’t remember who have been with me since early on. And you who arrived here recently I thank as well because you decided to start following me, it warms my heart. Now that we got all that fluffy shit out of the way, let’s talk about macho stuff! Action movies! They are awesome and provide a lot of entertainment (mostly) and are really fun to just watch since they rarely make you feel bad or make you think too much. And today we are here to talk about my 13 favorite action movies. Now before we begin we have to establish some rules.

#1: This is my list, so don’t start bitching when a movie you like isn’t on the list or if a movie you dislike is on the list. My opinion and ego is the center of attention here.

#2: As much as I would love to put movies like “Guardians of the Galaxy” or “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly” on this list I am not going to. This is a list that is made up of movies mainly focusing on action, so sci-fi is not fit for it. I can say now though that a few movies with sci-fi elements in them will appear but they don’t rely on it overly much. Westerns are (unfortunately) out of the game to. And while you would expect me to put “Drive” on this list, I can’t. I see “Drive” more as a drama/thriller with action bits in it.

#3: This list will not look the same in the future, I am sure of that much. There will be more action movies added to it (not editing this post for that). So while this list isn’t forever definitive, it is like this as of when it was made.

And finally I want to mention any good action movies I didn’t, feel free to leave a comment, I would love to hear your thoughts.
So let’s stop standing on the same spot, let’s go… My Top 13 action movies!

Number 13: Sherlock Holmes: A game of Shadows (2011)
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Kicking off the list the sequel to the pretty successful movie “Sherlock Holmes” starring Robert Downey Jr. This is one occasion where I think the sequel is more enjoyable than the first. I seem to be the only one thinking that though. Trust me, I really like the first one too, but I think I prefer this on an entertainment level and as an action movie. Plus, this movie has more of James Moriarty (Jared Harris) than the first movie. And I like that. Now this is as low on the list because, well I think the other movies are better action movies (and movies in general) than this. But I do like this movie a good amount.

Number 12: Batman Begins (2005)
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I’ve always loved that picture of Batman, it looks so cool! Oh crap, right… action movies! Putting a Batman movie in the list is a bit of a no-brainer. But which one? Most people would probably choose “The Dark Knight” and I can respect that. But my pick is my favorite of the Nolan Batman movies, “Batman Begins”. And while I think the title is a little funny “Batman Begins”, a sequel should have been called “Batman Continues” and then “Batman Quits”… hehe. Sorry, getting off track. But despite the somewhat silly title I love this movie. Sure, I love the entire trilogy but this is my favorite of them all. The action is nothing short of great and it helps that this movie knows how to tell a great story as well based on everybody’s favorite flying rodent. Plus, Christian Bale is perfect in this movie as Batman. To be honest, everyone in the movie does a great job with their performances. But I love this movie and think it is a great action movie.

Number 11: Die Hard (1988)
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Yippee ki-yay motherfucker, it’s “Die Hard”. The movie that solidified Bruce Willis as not only an actor, but also an action star. And man is it a good one! And some of you might be thinking “Die Hard so low!? Fuck you man!”. And then I will have to refer you to rule #1: No bitching. Second of all, I really love “Die Hard”. It is a great action movie. Plus, be glad it is on my list in general! It is here for a reason and that is that I think it is a great action movie… and it’s set during christmas. So it’s a great action and christmas movie!

Number 10: Sin City (2005)
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This movie is pretty violent. But the violence in this movie is one of the things that makes it so unique. Another one is the badass color palette. I am aware “Schindler’s List” used a similar style, but “Sin City” did it in a way that gives it an edge. This movie is big, bold and badass, which happens to be something a critic said about 2014’s “The Guest”. But this was big, bold and badass before that so… “Sin City”! The action in this movie is brutal and awesome. And like I said before, the color palette makes it so much cooler. This movie is awesome.

Number 9: Cowboy Bebop: The movie (2001)
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In my rules, I said that extreme science fiction and westerns were ruled out… I never said anything about animation. Sure, this has sci-fi and it has a bit of western in it’s title, but it is more of an action movie than anything. I am a huge fan of the “Cowboy Bebop” television show. I would go as far to say that it is my second favorite anime show of all time. But back to the movie! It got (like the show) excellent animation by Studio Sunrise, a kickass soundtrack and the best dub in animation history. Steve Blum IS Spike Spiegel! The action is also really kickass, like the show. I love this movie so much and thought it was a good tie-in to the show. It isn’t a sequel, it is set during the show…ish. But I do still recommend that you watch the show first to get to know the characters and then come back and watch this movie because it is so awesome!

Number 8: Casino Royale (2006)
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Yeah, a James Bond movie made it to the list. And damn is it a good one! Not only did it eliminate my doubts about Daniel Craig being Bond, but it was also a lot better in general than I thought it would be. It had a great plot, a fucking awesome opening theme (Chris Cornell – You know my Name), great performances and some really great and intense action sequences. Not only is this number 8 on my list over favorite action movies, but it is also my favorite James Bond movie. “Casino Royale” is a great movie that is perfect in being both a great friday night action movie and a really good character-driven drama.

Number 7: Heat (1995)
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Going a little bit old school again with this 1995 action/drama/crime/thriller from director Michael Mann (who later this month comes out with “Blackhat”). This movie is pretty great, and not only because it is on my list. It manages to be more than a simple heist-action movie. It is a heavily character-driven and really well told story. But how does it do in the action department? It is pretty great actually! And the acting in the movie is pretty great too. But that should have been obvious considering the three main stars are Al Pacino, Robert De Niro and Val Kilmer… and Jon Voight… Tom Sizemore… getting off track. But when action happens in this movie it is glorious. It is intense, it is badass and it is grand! It takes up a lot of space in the awesomeness room. “Heat” is one of those movies that may be very long, but it is still so worth seeing!

Number 6: Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014).
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Like with “Cowboy Bebop” this movie may have sci-fi elements in it, but it is mainly an action movie mixed with some spy-espionage-thriller elements. And for that I have to salute Marvel for making a really awesome movie. A great twisty-turny story, great performances, great music reminiscent of “Metal Gear Solid” and some of the greatest action in a movie in recent years. I loved seeing this and I will definitely watch it again some time. It is a great action movie!

Number 5: Taken (2008)
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Don’t piss off Liam Neeson, he will kill you with his pinky finger. “Taken” was one of those movies that really surprised me in how great it was. Did I expect it to be this great? No. Did I expect to hate it? Not really. Did I like it? It should be obvious since it is on the list. Sure, some of the action was hidden behind shaky-cam, but a lot of the action was still really great. I also really liked the plot of a man who is like the deadliest father ever go and look for his kidnapped daughter halfway across the world… and also kick a lot of ass during his little “visit” there. I also love Liam Neeson, the guy is a great actor. This movie also gave us something we never knew we wanted that would become what we love now… Liam Neeson doing action things. Yeah, this movie was awesome.

Number 4: Dirty Harry (1971)
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From one badass of an older age to another, it is the original badass himself… Clint Eastwood! This has to be one of his most iconic roles/movies, everybody knows about “Dirty” Harry Callahan. He is one of those badasses you don’t want pursuing you because he will growl you to death… if doesn’t kill you with his .44 magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world that can blow your head clean off, so you gotta ask yourself “Do I feel lucky?” Well do ya, PUNK!?

Number 3: Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)
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How could I not? This is the definite sequel! This is the one example I can give when someone asks “Is there a sequel to a movie that is better than the original?” and then I go “Terminator 2”. That is how it always goes and will always go. This is what a sequel should be; improve on the original. And don’t get me wrong, I really like the original “Terminator”, but this movie basically grabs it by the collar and throws it out the window. Hell, even the theme song (which is the same as the original) is better. And the visual effects are so much better! Both the practical ones and the CGI ones. I adore this movie so much.

Number 2: The Matrix (1999)
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Oh come on, you expected this movie to be on the list somewhere! It got some of the best action scenes ever put in any movie ever! It’s also the movie that really gave us Hugo Weaving who plays one of the best villains in movie history. I would also say it is Keanu Reeves’ best performance (Sidenote: Take to mind that I have not seen “John Wick” yet which a fair amount of people seem to say has the best Keanu performance ever). Still, think what he would be like if he put a little of that one scene I have seen from “Point Break” in this movie. “I, AM, A, COMPUTER, HACKER!” That would have been pretty hilarious. But still, “The Matrix” is a great action movie and one of my personal movies of all time.

Number 1: Inception (2010)
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Yes this is technically an action movie. But a very ambitious and brain-driven movie. And even if you don’t like overly complex stuff, you still get a really good amount of action the movie to be entertained for about two hours. It also got some amazing visual effects, great performances, great music and one of the coolest concepts ever. I love this movie so much in terms of the whole action movie thing and as a movie in general. I am going to say it, “Inception” is one of my favorite movies of all time.

As you may have noticed this list isn’t really ranked based on how much action or explosions there are, but more on my opinion of the movie itself and it of course being an action movie. So like I said before, are there some great action movies I didn’t mention? Feel free to leave a comment. Thanks for sticking around both on the blog and this long post, you rock!

See ya!

 

My Top 5 Crime-thriller movies

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Hello people of ze internets. For the first time on this little blog of mine, I am doing a countdown. Holy shit.
As I mentioned in my review of “Prisoners”, I love crime stuff. Movies, books, shows…anything really…except if it’s bad of course. So I got the idea of making a countdown of my favorite crime-thriller movies. Are you ready for this? Because if you’re not, then bye-bye!

Ladies and gentlemen…My Top 5 Crime-thriller movies (Given I have not seen ALL crime-thrillers ever).

5. Sin City (2005)
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Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez’ dark neo-noir based on the graphic novels of the same name by Frank Miller is a shining example of what a crime-thriller is. It fetures crime, and is really thrilling. Also, it never gets boring, especially with its beautiful style of black & white mixed with colors every now and then. This movie is one of the greatest things ever since it is so unique.

4. Prisoners (2013)
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This dark and twisted tale about two girls disappearing on thanksgiving is a haunting experience to say the least. It is hightened by the fact that it kept me intrigued the entire time by being complex…yet understandable. Canadian Denis Villeneuve made a beautiful looking movie with a dark story that kept me on the edge of my seat…and no movie has achieved that since “Requiem for a Dream”. Also, the perfromances by Donnie Darko and Wolverine were amazing…two of the best and most haunting I have ever seen.

3. Heat (1995)
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This movie might look like just any other bank heist movie to you…but it ain’t. This movie does not only have a these days rarely seen type of crime (for movies) and action. It is also one of the most thrilling movies I have ever seen. Every time there was action in a scene or anything relating to crime, I was pumped. Michael Mann’s 1995 classic made it into the heart of me. I love this crime-thriller.

2. Collateral (2004)

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Another Michael Mann movie enters the list. But this time it is about cab driver Max who is up for the ride/job of his life. This movie always kept me on edge, it never got boring, not even during regular conversations between characters. This movie is so well done and looks amazing. It also gives us one of the best performances from Tom Cruise I have ever seen. Also, it got 2 Oscar nominations. How is that for a proof of greatness?

1. Drive (2011)

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Did you see this coming? I bet you did, and that fact is based on all the praise I gave this movie during my review of it. At the time, I said it was my favorite movie. But now it comes close second. But that doesn’t stop this from being one powerhosue of a movie. “Drive” by danish director Nicolas Winding Refn is a modern masterpiece. This movie got a few mixed reviews. Sure, most were good, but a lot of people were “bored” by it. I bet they expected it to be like “Transporter 4” or a new “Fast and the Furious”. Sure, I went in and kind of expected a hard boiled action movie, but what I got was so much more. This movie intrigues me on every level and is proof that subtlety is one of the best things a thriller can offer. This movie, like I said, is a fucking masterpiece.

Countdown completed.

3, 2, 1…Let’s Jam!

 

Movie Review: Sin City (2005)

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If you are a person that knows me, then you know I am a sort of all-round nerd. Movies, tv, anime, books…comics. Take two of those and you get a certain 2005 movie. And of course I mean comics (or more specifically, graphic novels) and movies. So what happens when you take one of the darkest and most brutal comic series, turn it into a movie and let Robert Rodriguez direct it? You get this interesting 2005 action movie.

Guys…the brutal and dark movie simply known as; Sin City.

Like I pretty much said, the story is based on graphic novels (very graphic, yes puns are allowed here) by Frank Miller who also happens to co-direct this movie. The story follows three different guys and their different situations, all of them involving crime…and a shit-ton of violence. To round up the gang we start with John Hartigan (Bruce Willis), a cop who is sick of the corruption within law enforcement in Basin City (Yes, that is the name of the town), he often refers to himself as old man (which he is) while dealing with a poor heart that could give out at any moment of stress. Next on the list is Marv (Mickey Rourke), a man who is dead set to find the killer of a hooker he slept with (even though he had no fucking clue she was a hooker). This guy is fucking relentless, I mean like wow! Nothing actually stops this guy, they just slow him down. Yeah. And to round up our list of flawed men we have Dwight McCarthy (Clive Owen). A man who had some form of plastic surgery to change his face (his original will be revealed in the sequel coming august this year). He wants to stop this one guy who had hurt and threatened his girlfriend. He also helps out a part of town controlled by, and I am not making this up, prostitutes. There are a lot of things happening in this movie. There is for example parts where Marv fights this cannibal who is too fucking fast for him by the name of Kevin (Elijah Wood). There are a lot of fucked up things happening in this movie. But that is what makes it so interesting plot wise.

The characters in this movie are generally flawed, but only in one way unique to every character. But that is what makes them so damn entertaining to watch. The most entertaining characters were the more psycho characters. Honestly one of the best things go to the character of Jackie Boy (Benicio Del Toro). He is just so fun and cool. He also got a cool voice. But like I said…characters are flawed, but fun as hell.

The music in the movie is perfect for the movie it is in. It is a soundtrack about as dark and haunting as the rest of the movie. That is all.

One good thing to mention about this movie is that is for the most part in black and white. There are colors in it, yes. But they are mostly featured if they either are A: Based on a bodily fluid or B: Bright fucking red. The colors that you’ll see the most in this movie are Red, Yellow and Blue. You will see a few other, but that is not the most usual. But the black and white style combined with the every-now-and-then colors make for a nice detail in the movie.

The reception for Sin City back in ’05 was pretty much good all across the board. Hell, even Roger Ebert gave it a 4/4 stars. He thought it was that good. Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 78% score. And that’s pretty damn good. It got an 8,2/10 on imdb and it placed #169 on imdb’s top 250 list.

So based on me thinking the story was good, characters entertaining, music nice, black and white goodness and in generally good action scenes, I will give this movie a 9,25/10. This movie is honestly a lot better than I thought I would think. If you get the chance, buy this lovely neo-noir brutality-fest. It is worth you time/money.

I have sinned by reviwing this (Puns again).

Bye now.