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Going to turn into a Cult Classic
Overlord is essentially a B-movie with a Hollywood budget, great action, and a TON of gore. I really enjoyed this movie quite a bit, especially in the opening scene, which was shot very well. This movie is an action-horror set during World War II when a bunch of American Soldiers discover that the Germans are up to something sinister in one of their bases, and that is all I will say about the plot. It's awesome to watch. The films cast doesn't consist of any A-Listers or Superstars, but has a lot of recognizable faces such as Wyatt Russell, (who's performance reminded me a lot of his dad Kurt in The Thing), Pilous Asbaek and Jacob Anderson of Game of Thrones fame, John Magaro and Bokeem Woodbine, and newcomers Jovan Adepo and Mathilde Olliver as the leads. To sum it up, Overlord is the type of movie that is going to develop a fanbase years from now, it is very fun and will satisfy those both looking for intense action and gory horror, and I can easily recommend this. We can all thank Julius Avery for directing such a fun movie and J.J Abrhams for deciding to NOT turn this film into a Cloverfield movie.
The Predator (2018)
A Fun, but Messy Film
The Predator is the long awaited sequel to Predator and Predator 2, that comes many years after the events of these two films. And since this film is directed by Shane Black, who is a veteran of the franchise, this film had a lot of hype surrounding it.
While the film is very fun, the plot moves at a rapid fast pace and nothing is really explained too well at all. There are some scenes where you cannot even explain what is going on. It happens SO fast. And there are some pretty glaring plot holes where the movies tries to explore something, but then cuts back and never explores this said aspect again. This film also had an ensemble cast, but I'd say the standouts were Olivia Munn, Jacob Tremblay (as always) and Boyd Holbrook. I think Holbrook is shpwing he can be the anchor of the film as he was pretty entertaining and that he has the chops of an action hero; almost reminding me of Brad Pitt. The Predators themselves were awesome and had some pretty nasty kills, probably being the goriest of the franchise. This film also had plenty of jokes, mostly coming from Keegan Michael Key and Thomas Jane, and while they were pretty funny, sometimes the jokes do feel flat or just offensive. Overall, I think this film will be divisive among Predator fans, and while it can get pretty messy, there is fun to be had here and for the most part I thought it was enjoyable.
The Nun (2018)
A Massive Disappointment for the Conjuring Franchise
The Nun is the third spin-off in The Conjuring Universe, and is centered around "Valak" the demon we've seen in The Conjuring 2, and Annabelle Creation. It is directed by Corin Hardy, and stars Taissa Farmiga and Demian Bichir as we follow what is supposed to be the origin of this popular demon nun.
Let me start off by saying that I am a massive fan of both The Conjuring 1 and 2, I think James Wan is currently the pioneer in modern horror filmmaking, and even though he did not direct this movie, I was excited to see he was a writer. Unfortunately, this movie is not nearly as scary or even remotely entertaining as either of those movies.
This movie was a complete cash grab, from start to finish. How can you name your movie "The Nun" and have this character hardly be in the movie?? We learn next to NOTHING about this character, which makes the entire movie pointless.
Farmiga and Bichir are fine in their roles, they're both accomplished actors and I've enjoyed both of them in other projects, but the characters they play are so beyond flat that it is obvious this movie just needed two people to wander through an old castle just to get scared. The film has almost no plot whatsoever. It's just jumpscare after jumpscare after jumpscare until it is time to fight The Nun and wrap the film up. I don't believe for a second that Wan had much to do with the screenplay because he is so, so much better than this. I'm giving this film a very generous 6 because I enjoyed the set pieces, music, and Farmigas and Bechirs attempts to make the film more lively. It also ties into the series nicely towards the end. Otherwise, there is no real need to see this film. It feels like a studio driven movie and is presented as such. If you really want to see it, just wait until its on Netflix or HBO. Complete disappointment.
18 Years Later and This is still my Favorite Film of All Time.
Gladiator. There is not much else to be said than what has already been said. Where to begin? This epic film tells us the story of Maximus who ruled as a General then captured and brought into Rome as a slave, then rose the ranks as a Gladiator until he was able to defy the government and challenge the Emperor of Rome himself. Russell Crowe plays Maximus perfectly, emitting so much emotion with not too much dialogue. I also have to mention Joaquin Phoenix, who I believe is still one of the best actors in Hollywood, is incredible as Emperor Commodus. He is so unlikable and vile that you want to see him meet his end the moment he steps on screen. Ridley Scott has to be given a ton of credit, as a director who can make a classic and then a flop in an instant, he was able to capture the corruption and beauty of Rome at the same time with some really, REALLY awesome shots of the city, and was able to tell this epic story in 2 and a half hours that just rush by. This film still stands the test of time, and if you somehow have not seen this film by now, please... stop reading this review and go watch this landmark of a film, Gladiator.
An incredible war movie that should be watched by anyone who loves film.
Wow. I got the chance to see Dunkirk last night in an advanced screening, and all I can say is Wow. This movie directed by the spectacular Christopher Nolan brings the infamous evacuation of the French town during World War II to the big screen, and OH MAN does it deliver. The film is told from three different perspectives, The Mole (Land), The Sea, and The Air. Each perspective is successful in telling their respective story during the evacuation.
The Mole - is told from the perspective of Tommy, a young private in the British Army, who is trying to get out of Dunkirk alive and well. He is played by newcomer Fionn Whitehead, who brings a sense of fear and bravery to the role. He plays the role very very well for a newcomer, and I would assume has a bright future in the industry. Of course, he is joined by Harry Styles, and while I was annoyed by his casting at first, he actually fits in with the rest of the cast and I looked at him as Alex, and not Harry Styles in a war film. This perspective is where most of the danger looms, and Nolan delivers the intensity and fear that many soldiers were feeling on that beach.
The Sea - is told from a British civilian named Mr. Dawson, and his son Peter. They feel they are doing the right thing by sailing to Dunkirk to aid the soldiers still trapped on the beach. Mr. Dawson is played incredibly by Mark Rylance, who I can easily see another Oscar nomination ready for him due to this film. They are also joined by Cillian Murphy, who portrays a shell shocked soldier who's boat was destroyed by a German sub. He plays the role incredibly.
The Air - Tom Hardy is the star of this perspective, playing the hero in one of the British war planes keeping the Germans at bay while the British and French get as many of their men off the beach as they can. We're all so used to seeing Hardy playing the villain but its nice to finally cheer the man on as he defends the British with all hes got. Very intense dogfighting scenes from here.
All in all, this movie is a masterpiece of the war genre. Expertly crafted by Nolan, he excels in creating a sense of urgency and fear in every scene. This films soundtrack is outstanding, as well as its cinematography, and acting. The movie does not have much dialogue, but it doesn't matter as the scenery speaks for itself. I see many Oscar nominations for this movie in 2018, and for good reason. See it as soon as you can, you will not regret it.
Captain America: Civil War (2016)
The Greatest MCU Film of All Time.
Captain America: Civil War is without a doubt, the greatest movie in the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe. You read that correctly. The story is incredibly compelling and very deep for a superhero movie, the acting is outstanding (per usual when it comes to these) and the action scenes are intense, to say the very least. The Russo Brothers have once again hit it out of the park with Civil War, and it's just as great as The Winter Soldier.
As usual, Chris Evans was incredible as Steve Rodgers/Captain America. He has such a likability to him that you just cannot ignore. As you know, Robert Downey Jr. owns the role of Tony Stark. If for whatever reason another actor gets the chance to play Stark, it's likely they won't come close to playing the character as well as RDJ. The biggest surprise to me was Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes, AKA The Winter Soldier. He plays a much bigger role in this film compared to the previous Captain America films, and Stan managed to pull off an extremely interesting and captivating performance. You don't know if you should root for him or be against him. Scarlett Johansson gives a noteworthy performance as Black Widow yet again, and Elizabeth Olsen and Jeremy Renner, as well as Paul Bettany are all pretty great in their roles as Scarlett Witch, Hawkeye, and Vision respectively.
Also, the new additions to the MCU are Black Panther and (finally!) Spider-Man. I do not want to say much about them because I would rather you see them for yourself, but I will say Panther may be the most interesting and mysterious hero yet, and personally, Tom Holland is my favorite Spider-Man ever, and I never thought I would say that. The climatic fight scene in the airport is the most entertaining fight I may have seen in film. I don't want to spoil, but Ant-Man steals the show in this scene. And the fight between Cap and Iron Man is so intense it will literally bring you to the edge of your seat.
This movie is what every single Marvel fan has been waiting for. It is a complete rebound after Age of Ultron, which disappointed me completely. Phase Three is off to a very hot start, and we may be in for the best phase yet.
Fantastic Four (2015)
I don't get the hate...
Let me start off by saying that this is NOT a perfect film. It is very far from that, but to call it an awful film? I have to disagree. The major problem with the movie was that it takes WAY too long to build up the characters, and then when they finally get their powers, the movies rushes and then suddenly ends. But it's not like the first half isn't at least interesting. Director Josh Trank attempts to restore the Marvel comic in his second film after his successful debut of Chronicle.
The story is a pretty good origin story that got way more devoted time then it should have. I did enjoy it for the most part, but it could have been cut down a little bit in favor of more action from the Fantastic Four. One thing I really enjoyed was that even though it was a Marvel movie, it had a dark feel to it. It tried to act like a DC movie instead of Marvel, which was a fresh surprise considering that all Marvel movies are starting to all feel like the same light humor action festival.
The cast consists of big up-and-comers Miles Teller (playing Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic) and Michael B. Jordan (playing Johnny Storm/Human Torch), the somewhat established Kate Mara, (playing Sue Storm/Invisible Woman) and the relatively unknown Jamie Bell. (Playing Ben Grimm/The Thing). Miles Teller keeps the story together and I feel like he plays a very good Reed Richards but a cheesy Mr. Fantastic, but that is the script he had to work with for the second half. Michael B. Jordan is the most impressive, but he got the least amount of screen time out of the four. Toby Kebbell (playing Victor Von Doom/ Dr. Doom) is also decent but he disappears in the beginning and then comes back when they're is about 20 minutes left. I feel like Dr. Doom definitely should have been used more but you will remember his scenes.
The special effects were impressive, and making The Thing created by CGI worked well. I just wish they gave him some pants, along with Doom. You can tell about 80% of the budget went towards the climax alone. Speaking of the climax, it was kind of fun to watch but it was so rushed, and left me wanting more.
Overall, it did have a decent amount of flaws, but I enjoyed it overall. The origin story was pretty interesting, the acting was good enough for the cheesy script they had to work with, and the action scenes were fun for what they were. It was far from The Dark Knight, but it is nowhere near Batman & Robin.