Sunday, June 18, 2017

Summer-Fall 2017 Movie Preview


We've past the half of the month, which is probably a record for delaying this... So let's get it started until June's not totally over...

Recently released, "It Comes at Night" seems to be one of the best ranked horrors lately. The trailer doesn't say much, but from what it says it seems at least we don't have an overused subject... (=taking a break from ghost & evil spirits for once).

Changing with 180 degrees, we reach to "Despicable Me" episode 3. No other introduction needed...

"Shaun of the Dead", "Hot Fuzz" and "The World's End" have more in common than Simon Pegg. To be precise, also Edgar Wright, as director and co-writer. Going solo at the end of June with "Baby Driver". Let's see how much of the above is kept...

"Spiderman" comes home in July in the ... third version/actor in the last 15 years. Cash flow, nothing more to say...

"Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets" is 2nd to my top of the list for this summer. Luc Besson didn't release a pure SciFi since "The Fifth Element". I don't expect to reach that level, but if we're at least up to where "Lucy" was I'm fine.

Talking about the fifth element, I didn't see Bruce Willis since quite a while in a decent movie. I'm not really expecting that from "First Kill" either, but let's wait and see...

My top of the list comes this August - "The Dark Tower". If it doesn't sound familiar already, in brief it's the magnum opus of Stephen King. What's left to be said is that what's released this year is most probably just the first part...

"Kidnap" is a thriller that looks relatively average. I don't know why though, but the trailer reminded me of "Taken" (well, in a lighter version :)...)

Finally, "Wind River" seems to be close to the top of the genre. It seems to me that Taylor Sheridan, who also wrote "Sicario" and "Hell or High Water", slowly becomes a sort of Alexander Payne, but for the thriller niche.

Next week, movie in the fall...

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Wonder Woman (2017)



Good story, the script so & so, bad directing... that's what gets "Wonder Woman" from what could've been excellent to average consumerism...

I'm not sure I should say much more. I could get a tast of the best part in the movie because the trailer didn't give away the story. Well, as a short summary, Diana, the Amazon princess, moves from a very very remote island directly in the middle of the first World War. Decided to put an end to the global conflict by killing Ares the God of War himself, Diana teams up with a pilot/spy from the allied army. And like that we're getting in the front lines of the battle, and more of what's going on we can see in the movie...

The story is good (not very good) if we ignore a whole bunch of made up stuff, way out of the real version. From portraying the Amazons as a pro-peace nation, up to killing the evil general Ludendorff on the battlefield - that was a real character by the way, died of liver cancer quite some time after the war. The script is full of cliche usage (sort of expectable). The big issue though come form the directing, where leaving aside the ton of exaggerated slow motion (just to put a blame also on the editing), we actually have a major problem with the acting. And yes, the blame is on the director, because from what I've watched I can't believe the issue's with the actors but more with stupid instructions that led way too often into scenes where we have almost more over-acting than in a silent movie. Besides Chris Pine the lack of keeping it in the realms of natural is visible on everybody. I don't comment this too often, but here was way too obvious...

Rating: 3 out of 5 (really on the edge, and most probably subjective...)

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Alien: Covenant (2017)



David's not Ash, Walter's not Bishop and "Covenant" is not "Alien"/"Aliens", but it's also not that bad either...

Context: "Covenant" is a colony ship targeting a planet somewhere far away, the crew and colonists lying in induced sleep/cryostasis/whatever, and an android (Walter) takes care of maintenance on board. Story: Issues on the way, crew wakes up, and discovers a habitable planet much closer than the original target. Ignoring the classic intergalactic wisdom: "It's a trap!", the new captain (previous one suffering a premature hot end-of-life event in his sleeping pod) decides on a exploring mission. And like that we're getting in an ecosystem where the evil alien lives quietly waiting for fresh meat. But also where we have another android - David - remember "Prometheus"? ... Ending: Well I don't either, but I guess enough to say that David didn't seem have exactly sane cybersynaptic connections in his brain, which proves to be true quite fast... More it's spoilers, so let's stop.

"Prometheus" was overly disappointing, and Noomi Rapace a total fail as Ripley replacement. So somehow influenced by this I can say that I actually liked "Covenant". Even though the story isn't that complex. There is some depth and some fine irony (e.g., you would expect that a superior brain who's convinced to be the incarnation of Ozymandias, king of kings to know who's quoting - well, of course he doesn't...). As well there are lots of references to the bad android/good android in the first two Alien movies as I was suggesting in the beginning. But as good Michael Fassbender might be in his role, at least the Bishop played by Lance Henriksen it's a different class. And Ash, well... (light spoiler) it's obvious that the current Ridley Scott prefers his own android approach in the beginning of the series ;), but even so... The major issue in "Covenant" is the ending: 1 - way, way too predictable and 2 - guess what, we'll have a sequel (not announced yet, but it must be there) = unfinished ending ... Still, it's an "Alien" episode that's comparable with part 3 and 4. So, the best in last 20 years.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)



I have a flight in less than 4 hours and I should probably sleep at least 1.5 of it, so you'll excuse me but I'll be again extremely quick for "GoG 2" although it would deserve much more. It's not as good as the first, but everything you liked in the first you'll get also here - from jokes to a story that leaves way behind the Marvel cliches (maybe excepting "Dr. Strange" = where the distance is smaller, but still exists), because it's just something else. It has a big originality plus towards the classic super-hero template that's pretty much the same everywhere. This time though we also get here a family issues package that gets us closer to the classic line of "background stories", but again ... it's something else. I don't have time to write more now, and maybe I'm also a bit subjective, but a movie that has potential to get a tear from without classifying as tear-jerking and which also naturally alternates that with simple fun, that's a rare bird...

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Monday, May 8, 2017

Nueve Reinas (2000)



Long time, no posts ... I don't really have a subject, and I have a month way too full to find something, so I've decided for a lightning fast entry on "Nueve Reinas". I've seen the movie looooong ago for the first time, but I've re-watched it in pieces relatively recent. My impression left from my first watch was a very good one. However, after more than 15 years I guess I've become a bit more picky :)... The story: two con-artists meet one day in a shop after an unsuccessful attempt of one of them two swindle the cashier. After escaping in the end, the two guys decide on a short term collaboration, and moving from "customer" to "customer" they reach to a wealthy target interested in the "nine queens" - a rare set of German stamps issued in the beginning of the 20-th century. Further we have a perfect copy, the originals coming into picture, some twists... In other words what's following and especially the ending is too nice to tell you more now :) Especially for a first view. Second time you'll notice maybe tiny things that don't fit so perfectly ;) ...

Rating: 3.5 out of 5