Pacific Rim Review

Del Toro did real good.

I was actually going to skip this movie today because I just wasn’t in the mood to get myself to the movie theatre. I’m a lazy one… But goodness, am I glad I went anyways.

Pacific Rim is the perfect escape. The movie was magnificent. It is one of the best cinematic experiences I have ever had. Watch it in IMAX or don’t watch it all. I watched it in 3D for the IMAX, and god am I happy I got to see it in 3D. I was completely there. All of my previous worries were almost completely forgotten because instead, I was worrying about who was going to drift with Raleigh. (I love that name, by the way.)

I find that IMAX is quite irritating sometimes with how loud it is. But this movie needed it. I was so immersed with everything that was going on. I could touch the water. I could hear the echo of Idris Elba’s voice. I could even hear the wind whoosh past my face when I turned it up so high to see the Gipsy.

The visuals were incredible. The Jaegers felt so real.

For anyone who has seen the movie, I loved the whole drifting concept. I can’t say I completely understood, but I don’t think it was meant to be analyzed that much. It works for the movie to say that it’s just something that you have to experience first-hand as a pilot to truly understand what it means to drift.

This, in this very moment, is my favourite movie ever. I feel so obsessed. It’s not actually my favourite movie, but the fact that I felt like I needed to say it anyways, means that it’s pretty dang amazing.

This was my favourite summer movie, action-wise at least. The fighting scenes were SO good. Forget Iron Man, Fast 6, Star Trek, even Man of Steel. Yup, I just totally said that the action was better than Man of Steel (and I loved Man of Steel).

Charlie Hunnam is so fantastic. Personally, I think his voice has a more appealing tone in the movie, with the fake accent. I have been putting it off for so long, but I definitely need to go watch “Sons of Anarchy” now.

There are also no complaints from my end in terms of casting, especially with secondary characters played by Charlie Day and Burn Gorman. They were a riot (in a good way).

I’m also going to have the part where Pentecost (Idris Elba) yells, “Today we are cancelling the apocalypse!” replaying in my head.

I’ll just avoid going into detail how obsessed I am with Idris.

There’s more that I want to share, but most of that includes spoilers, so I’ll keep it to myself. And if anyone is curious, hit me up or comment below. 🙂

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Oblivion Review Rant

I was uber excited for this movie. I had been waiting for months, so I was determined to catch it opening day. “Tom Cruise in an action movie?! Finally!” (Other than MI) “Tom Cruise kills action. It’s definitely going to be good.” Needless to say, I was SO wrong. The trailer is so misleading. The movie just goes in the dumbest directions. It’s like the stupidest combination of stories. There is SO much crappy dialogue and HORRIBLE character development throughout the film. It would have worked much better as a television show storyline-wise. Then there were some scenes which were just plain stupid which I’m not going to spoil here, but you’ll know if you dare to watch it. Also, they were playing some awesome epic music when the movie started, and I loved it. But there was epic music playing in like every other scene too… Taking a note from one of my favourite quotes (from the Incredibles), “When everyone’s super, no one is.” — When every scene has epic music, nothing stands out as epic. :/ Idk how to put it better. It’s pretty simple though. I think there was more stuff that bugged me. But that’s it from the top of my head right now. It’s definitely a movie you can skip this season, and I was really expecting it to be one of my favourites of the summer.

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Django Unchained Review

 

Quentin Tarantino has released several successful films and is a well-recognized director. Personally, I believe he is one of the most innovative directors of today. Through his films, it’s apparent that he has a very personal and unique style. It’s difficult to classify, but the word that comes to mind is extremities, particularly with violence. You can count on Tarantino to take things to the absolute limit. Django doesn’t disappoint: countless slaughters and enormous explosions followed by mounds of pooling, splattered blood contrasted on a field of cotton.

There are moments of merciless wipeouts which seem ridiculous and impossible. These moments, along with the perfect blend of blunt realism and well-written characters, makes it work. The characters were intriguing: well-developed and believable, yet unpredictable. Set up in an atmosphere and circumstances we understand, Tarantino’s extremes give you the things you want to see in a movie—what you don’t see or experience in reality.

Django Unchained was so much more than a bounty hunter on a mission to rescue his wife.

Tarantino always manages to capture a perfect balance of intense drama and mood-lightening comedy.

Jokes were well-developed: there was good build-up, and I was often laughing out loud. But no joke felt like it was squeezed too far that it lost its humour.

Tarantino’s previous big films include Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs, and Kill Bill all with plots that revolve around things like mobsters, thieves, drugs, criminals, and redemption. Inglorious Basterds seemed to be taking a step towards a larger audience for Tarantino, incorporating more mainstream content. Just with the plot, which revolves around World War II, there is the intrigue of a wider audience because of knowledge on the subject.

Perfecting what he started with Inglorious Basterds, Django Unchained feels like a much more modernized version of Tarantino’s works, a large aspect of it being the perfectly timed contemporary soundtrack.

On a technical note, something that stood out to me was the extremely well placed camera angles. And every transition came into another strategically placed shot. Every frame had meaning and there was careful use of focus which was often changing between deep and shallow, but it was always done in a smooth manner (despite Tarantino’s hard cuts) so that it wasn’t irritating.

All of the acting was brilliant, and every single actor’s performance is something to look forward to.

Christoph Waltz was great right from the first second we heard his voice, and Jamie Foxx just killed it as the lead. Despite being a big fan of DiCaprio, I wasn’t sure how I was going to like DiCaprio in a Tarantino film. It just didn’t seem to fit, and perhaps in an older Tarantino film, it wouldn’t have worked… but it did. And I loved it. On a side-note, a classmate who will remain unnamed, told me that apparently at an early screening of the film, Tarantino mentioned that he didn’t like DiCaprio in the film. Also, Samuel L Jackson’s character is something to look forward to. This is now one of my favourite Samuel L Jackson roles.

I’m so happy to see its best screenplay 2012 (Golden Globes) nomination because out of all the listed titles, Tarantino deserves the win.

 

Hunger Games Review

 “Welcome, and happy Hunger Games.”

I have to say I was extremely excited for the release of this movie. This being said, I did not necessarily have high expectations because I was unfamiliar with the director, Gary Ross, and his previous work. I did hope that it would receive a positive reaction. “A little hope is effective; a lot of hope is dangerous.”

The Hunger Games takes place in a post-apocalyptic setting called Panem (North America after its destruction). The story revolves around the life of a female character living a poor life, fighting each day to keep her family, her mother and sister, from starving. Each year, in order to remind the citizens who is in charge, the Capitol hosts the Hunger Games. The games require twenty-four children to enter an arena for a fight to the death. The plot begins to unfold when the main character, Katniss Everdeen, volunteers to take her younger sister’s place in the games.

There was extreme hype previous to the release of this film. Despite all of the obsessive fans, there were vast expectations that came along with displaying this film. Cases tend to be as such when one makes a film adaptation of an extremely successful book. I think the biggest concerns revolved around the scenes that would be cut out and the portrayal of the lead characters.

It was possible to bring only so much of the essence of the book to the screen. The book is told from a first person perspective. In film, it is easier to portray emotions instead of actually being able to hear a person’s thoughts. The complexity of Katniss’s character physically versus mentally being brought to the big screen worried me a little bit. After seeing it… why was I worried?

The one thing that really got to me was some of the little details which were cut out of scenes and I thought made a big deal to how you interpreted the scene and the tone it set. It also caused a lack of the extra impact which could have been added to the built up intensity. This bothered me so much because as a film student, I know they could have easily been fit in. There were also additional scenes added into the movie, which I believe were very well thought out. “This is the time to show them everything. Make sure they remember you.”

The violence and gore were noticeably limited. The reasons for this are understandable, although I wish there had been a little bit more horror incorporated, with the sound effects, if not visually. The children entered in the Hunger Games range from the ages of twelve to eighteen, so it makes sense why they tried to keep it a little bit lighter—keeping the age of the target audience similar to the characters’ ages in the movie. This was a little disappointing for me because the whole idea and setting of the Hunger Games was portrayed to be quite dark in the novel.

I haven’t seen a good science fiction film release since 2009’s Star Trek. This movie hit the mark and did a great job selling its genre. It also incorporated action, drama, and romance into its storyline, with the occasional jokes and dry humour.

Completely disregarding the book, there were things really well done in this film. From a technical point of view: the visual effects and makeup were extremely well done; the choreography for the action scenes was great. The soundtrack for the movie was truly atmospheric, and though this is probably going to cause a debate, I thought the camera work was well done. There was some shakiness, but it added to the action of the movie. Acting was outstanding. I can’t even emphasise enough, what an amazing job the actors, especially Jennifer Lawrence, who played Katniss, did.

All in all, someone having read and being a huge fan of the books, I left the theatre more than satisfied with the film. I don’t think it’s fair to give this movie a rating based on itself just as a movie because it made such an effort to stay as true to the book as possible. As satisfied as I was leaving the theatre, thinking that adaptation-wise, it was perfect for me, I’m finding more and more issues with it. Still, it is absolutely worth a watch, and should be appreciated for what it is—because it’s not bad. The soundtrack is phenomenal, and they more definitely aced that aspect of the film. I’m looking forward to the movie editions for the next two books!

 

Safe House Review

Definitely Played the House Safe…

“Denzel and Ryan in an action flick? I have to see this!” That was my initial reaction seeing the first poster release of the movie. The motion picture, Safe House, directed by Daniel Espinosa, introduces a CIA based plotline in a renewed perspective.

So, what exactly is the film about? CIA agent, Matt Weston, is appointed the duty of manning a safe house. CIA’s most wanted rogue agent, Tobin Frost, is captured and brought to the safe house. When the safe house is attacked, he goes on the run trying to keep possession of the fugitive, trying to keep under the radar while relocating to another safe house.

Personally, I have always been a huge fan of Denzel Washington, and more recently, Ryan Reynolds. The film brought together two A-list actors who performed as expected in the movie, with fantastic and believable acting. It was relatively obvious that the portrayal of the characters was going to be respectable with these actors cast as the leads. The characters were unique and different which is what supported the storyline. Had the characters not held their own, everything would have fallen apart. Despire the originality and portrayal, vast improvements could have been made with the actual development of the characters. Although the events that occurred were not entirely predictable, the flow of the characters’ personalities remained quite consistent, so we didn’t get to see too much into who they were, and the relationship formed between the two leads was the most predictable thing in the movie. Even through this, knowing only basic details about the characters, every emotional scene seemed to touch me. This just refers back to what strong actors were used in the roles.

Corruption of government based films usually make for quite interesting stories. My main thought going into the movie was, “I wonder if this is going to have a somewhat innovative storyline.” Having so many intelligence services and government related movies, you would think that it would be a typical and predictable story. They worked around the obstacle and managed to form something new, and it surprised me.

Without approaching the overall storyline, I thought that there were several well-written individual lines within the scripting.

I feel that although the story was satisfying due to the fact that it was fresh, it could have made a real mark had it taken more risks. The action sequences, which were executed quite well, felt limited. The story could have built up more. There was only one real story going on, with no real subplots (other than a short romance with Weston).

I believe the storyline was kept so limited because they were trying too hard to play it safe so that they could make a movie which would be classified as good. In my opinion, I think the film’s creators should have gone for it and tried to make it the movie that it could hypothetically be, and have the possibility of being able to have made an epic film, as opposed to having made a good one which is barely producing any sort of discussion, even by those who have seen it.

In order to make a more successful film of the genre, Espinosa should probably consider consulting a veteran like, Doug Liman, director of—The Bourne Identity, Fair Game, Mr & Mrs Smith, and Jumper—next time around. As Frost says in the movie, “You’ve done a fine job son. We’ll take it from here.”

The movie is recommended to any fans of the actors, and prescribed to anyone who is simply looking to kill time with a decent film. It’s a film which isn’t too long. Nobody likes a film which is unnecessarily prolonged. Time’s a-wasting. Tick tock, tick tock, tick tock, tick tock…”

Despite having the element of surprise in the story, nothing felt very significant. Saying this, I believe the movie had the potential to be quite amazing had there been a little bit more work put into the actual scripting, as well as plot and character development. My rating for this film would be a solid 6 out of10.