I hate to admit it, but “Lego Marvel Super Heroes: Maximum Overload” is much, much better than 2012′s “Amazing Spider-Man.” It’s made for kids, but works really well for adults, too.
And it’s particularly cool the way whenever something crashes into something else that it breaks into squares – because everything is made up of Legos, even glass. It’s just a shockingly awesome bit of animation, with more heart than that aforementioned lame Spider-Man movie.
And Sony really intends to crate a Spider-Man universe? Based on ASM, I am really not feeling it.
Among the many things that I am not aware of, ‘Maximum Overload’ appears to be the first episode of a series. I am almost afraid to watch anymore because I don’t know if they can maintain awesomeness of multiple episodes.
“Paul W.S. Anderson is a successful director, yet paradoxically many of his films are barely watchable.”
I have read that George Romero was originally offered the first ‘Resident Evil,’ though his treatment of the property was eventually rejected. It’s worth noting that I haven’t read or seen that treatment, so I have no basis for understanding why the producers came by their decision.
And admittedly, Anderson’s film wasn’t terrible. It wasn’t great, but was at least effective. And since I never played the video games it was based upon, I can’t say how accurate it was to them.
Though the later movies in the Resident Evil series have gotten schlockier and schlockier, which is a pity because the production design of those that I have seen is typically top-notch (for “Resident Evil: Apocalpyse” production was led by Paul Denham Austerberry, and it’s attractive in a clinical, Germanic way. It reminds me of the work Carol Spier somewhat, which is a high complement). This time around Paul P.W. Anderson has passed the reins to Alexander Witt, whom would normally get the blame, or the kudos, for the end product.
I don’t blame Witt for the mess that is “Resident Evil: Apocalypse,” because Anderson not only wrote it, he produced it (along with Don Carmody and Anderson’s production partner, Jeremy Bolt), which says that a lot of what ended up on screen Paul W.S. Anderson wanted to be there.
“”Curse Of Chucky” is at heart a very smart movie. Unfortunately, much of that smartness is surrounded by a typical horror film.”
Don Mancini‘s “Curse Of Chucky” takes the “Child’s Play” franchise back to its origins, relying more on scares and suspense than the camp of the last few entries (which were entertaining, but began to go far afield of Tom Holland‘s original – which was written by Mancini).
What’s surprising is that “Curse Of Chucky” is a very clever movie. What’s unfortunate is that you don’t realize how smart it till about an hour in.
Which is a pity because till that time it’s a typical slasher film.
What doesn’t do the film any credit is that the violence that takes place is, more often than not, more cartoony that Chucky himself, which lessens its impact somewhat. For instance, there’s a scene where Chucky mixes someone’s pasta with a liberal dose of rat poison. Now, I have never eaten any type of poison before, though I do know that most poisons taste pretty bad (often for the very reason that if you happen to accidentally ingest them, you would know it) which is an indicator that you should at least stop eating it.
“”Jack Reacher” is a competent thriller, held back by the ego of its lead.”
Christopher McQuarrie‘s “Jack Reacher” (based on the books by Lee Child) isn’t a bad movie by any stretch. It’s well-done and surprisingly clever at times. It also has some great fight scenes, though the film has a big problem.
And it’s called Tom Cruise.
Which isn’t to say that his performance is a bad one. Quite the contrary, it’s not great, but it’s more than acceptable.
Though among people familiar with the character of Jack Reacher, the casting of Cruise left a bad taste in their collective mouths. For instance, while I haven’t read any of the novels, the character is 6 feet 5 inches tall and weighs somewhere in the neighborhood of 220 and 250 pounds.
Tom Cruise is 5 foot 7 inches tall, and I feel reasonably confident in saying that he doesn’t weigh 180 pounds, never mind 200.
I am always on the lookout for good sci-fi, so imagine my surprise to find a Tweet from Peter Hyoguchi. He’s created a web series called “The New Kind.” It takes place in a dark, dystopian future, where the greatest hope for us all lies in some young people that happen to be the next stage in human evolution.
Over 200 VFX artists from all over the world have contributed to the web series, and some of their work – especially for a web series – looks particularly innovative. I have seen the first episode, “The Ordinary World,” and like the grand scope and ambition of it.
That being said, there’s an over-reilance on CGI – I understand its use in cases where the filmmakers are trying to create digital environments for characters that would be too expensive to do practically, though when the ‘mechs’ enter the picture, things get a bit less interesting.
Besides, I can tell that there are interesting human stories that Hyoguchi is trying to tell, which all the technology on display distracts from.
Welcome to Tomorrow. Welcome to “The New Kind.”
“If There’s Any Justice,”The Loved Ones” Will Rank Among The Better Horror Films Ever Made”
When someone lists the best horror films of 2012, if Sean Byrne‘s “The Loved Ones” isn’t somewhere on it, then you’ll know that the list isn’t worth the time spent compiling it. It’s well-acted, Xavier Samuel, Robin Leavy and John Brumpton are remarkable, and needs far more attention than I am aware of it having received
That’s not to say that it’s perfect. There’s a subplot that goes on for way too long (there’s a reason for it being there though it doesn’t work nearly as well as the director thinks it does) but the main plot line is so intense, it acts as a bit of a breather.
I went into this cold, and the movie just drew me in. I should also mention that it passed my official barometer of movie goodness, which I call ‘The Distraction Test.”
“If you go into a movie called “Sharknado” – as I did – expecting anything more than schlock with mediocre CGI, be prepared for some seriously dashed hopes.”
I recall writing a few days ago that the movie “Zombie Massacre” was pretty bad, but a least you could tell that the filmmakers loved the subject matter.
“Sharknado” is a prime illustration of what happens when no one gives a damn. It’s filled with lots of mediocre-looking CGI sharks – and even worse practical ones on occasion – and acting that makes “Zombie Massacre” look much, much better by comparison.
And the worse thing is that the director, Anthony Ferrante, actually did the pretty decent horror film, “Boo,” though I suspect that my enjoyment of that film had more to do with the cinematographer being Dean Cundey (who’s best known for his work with John Carpenter). What’s curious for me is that IMDB doesn’t list Cundey as working on Ferrante’s film in any capacity, though I am reasonably sure he did.
“Luca Boni and Marco Ristori’s “Zombie Massacre” isn’t a very good movie, though it’s not as terrible as it could be.”
The filmmakers were originally going to call this “Apocalypse Z.” I suspect that they didn’t because Warner Bros., the company that released “World War Z,” probably wouldn’t be too happy about that.
It goes without saying that you don’t go into a movie with Uwe Boll‘s name anywhere in the credits (he’s producing and and appears on camera, which I will go into later) expecting a movie that excels in terms of the basics – acting, directing and so forth – and this film isn’t any different.
That being said, it’s not the worse movie that I have seen, mainly because I get the feeling that the filmmakers did the best with what they had. Sure, it isn’t much, though their love of the genre shines through despite their lack of resources.
Before seeing Alan Taylor’s follow-up to “Thor,” “Thor: The Dark World,” I happened to read a few reviews. Some were particularly insulting and mean-spirited, while others seemed not to have seen the first film, which is OK; but don’t complain about understanding the origin of Thor and the rest of the Asgardians when you can’t motivate yourself to see the film that established such things.
It’s akin to someone not seeing “Star Wars,” then watching “The Empire Strikes Back,” and wondering why the guy in black with asthma is so mean. And what’s with that “Force” stuff, anyway?
Sure, you could do it, though it comes off remarkably lazy (and what’s worse is that many of the people that do so are paid to watch movies).
For instance, it’s been established in the first film that the Asgardians ARE NOT GODS (which is repeated in this movie), nor are they immortal, though they live significantly longer than humans. What they are are aliens that make use of remarkably advanced technology that, to less-advanced peoples, looks like magic. They have visited the earth in the past, and inspired certain groups, like the Vikings, who believed them to be gods.
It’s actually relatively simple, despite the kvetching.
“Not the best of the genre, but it has its charms.”
Baltasar Kormákur‘s “2 Guns,” in terms of buddy-cop movies, pales before some of the better examples of the genre, like “48 Hrs,” or “Lethal Weapon,’ though that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have anything going for it.
It’s greatest strength are the ‘two guns,’ in “2 Guns,” Denzel Washington (Bobby) and Mark Wahlberg (Stig). When they’re on the screen – with their constant bickering and chatter, which comes off a bit homoerotic due to how comfortable the characters (and the actors) appear to be with each other – the movie is pretty interesting.
Not so much when the overly-complicated, as opposed to complex, plot is being emphasized. Things revolves around Bobby (who’s an undercover DEA Agent) and Stig (who I think works for Naval Intelligence, which is novel – and a bit odd) rob a bank, thinking that the money it holds belongs to Mexican drug kingpin Papi Greco (Edward James Olmos). They eventually learn – because a lot of strangers are trying to kill them – that the bank’s money is owned not only by Greco, but the CIA as well.