July 16, 2018

For my movies I have a few that I was able to finish and complete or see fresh but on the smaller screen.

IT:  So I had not finished IT, as I eluded to in my first review.  I had no real reason to do so but then in Atlanta it was on HBO, costing nothing and I did.  On a larger room tv the scary jumps were more scary without a doubt.   I did jump once a bit with the brother creeping around.  Still the premise of how to address and confront Penny Wise is a weak one in my opinion.   Still there is a good dynamic amongst the kids (even though it feels a lot like Stranger Things). They do have the one same bespeckled actor.  It also feels a bit like a retread of King’s Stand By Me.   If you can see for free, and like scarier films maybe check it out.  I will note that A Quiet Place for me is a superior thriller.
The Greatest Showman.   This was not on any list for me.  It was a musical, which generally in the theatre I do not wish to see, but I will admit that I expect that the theatre version of this would make sense.  But anyway it was free on an airplane. So I watched.  I thought that this was decent.  It kept my attention.  At it’s core it is a story about PT Barnum, the circus guy.   Part of me always thought it was Barnum & Bailey circus and it was a travelling show going town to town.   Here he is a Disney-like dreamer coming from nothing who starts in a building in New York.  Wolverine plays Barnum and Michelle Williams plays every Michelle Williams role she ever gets.  Zac Ephron is also in it which should end Alison’s journey and reading right there.  In the end it was a story about diversity and being who you are.  The music is catchy and decent.  There are a couple twists and it made the flight to Halifax go quickly.
Black Panther.  Another in flight film that didn’t cost a penny.   This was a decent superhero film in a sea of average.  I confess I am not a huge fan of the genre, and the noted Ant Man is a reason for me to remain unenthusiastic.   I can picture Stan Lee (and others) sitting in a room and brainstorming over any deformity or childhood trauma that they can exploit and make into a new ability.  Here we have a hidden African community with amazing technological advances that they keep to themselves.  Maybe that is because there is all this in-fighting going on looking to hold supreme executive power in the form of a monarchy.  Wouldn’t a modern technological wonder community have a modern method of selecting the next leader?   Wouldn’t they realize monarchies are outdated and only for show in the modern world?   Just because one can beat up someone else may not be the best selection process.  But I digress.   The women in this film are interesting and bad ass.  The story with King and then next in line makes sense (I suppose) despite the musings from above.   I saw this and it kept my attention.   It likely suffered a little from the hype and higher expectations.   Finishing I would rather see more of Black Panther than Ant Man.  Or Aqua Man or Thor.
Jurassic world.  This is the first dinosaur movie I have seen in a theatre that was just “Meh” to borrow my daughter’s word.   I can remember the awe and excitement from years ago seeing the first Jurassic Park.  The t-Rex attack was incredible!  It filled me with wonder.  Even Jeff Goldblum has returned to give voiceover in speaking to a Congressional hearing.  It is about the dangers of wielding genetic power.  How someone will weaponize it.  How it is simply something not to be trifled with.   From Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard looking to save the dinosaurs from an exploding island (the thick irony of trying to lobby and save an extinct animal from becoming extinct again) we have Buffalo Bill from Silence of the Lambs who you just know can’t be a good guy.   Things progress and recede as the plot bogs down.  There are some head scratching moments including the resolution of the film that I will not share.  In the end I felt this film repeated more scenes from previous films than putting forth new scenes and ideas.   There doesn’t need to be another one, but if it makes enough money there will be.

June 22nd, 2015 – summer edition

I went and saw Jurassic World on Saturday night in a packed theatre with kids.  This was recommended by my elder son who had already seen it.   He thought that it referenced the older original well, but putting a modern spin on it.   I am thanking him for the recommendation.   I enjoyed it and so did the others who attended.

This is entertainment pure and simple.  You go to see something new and interesting while not thinking too hard.   The dinosaurs look great and the premise continues to build on the overall theme – dinosaurs are genetically designed and people try and control the situation.    Control of course is a myth, and nature “finds a way”.   Here the people try to generate new buzz about the park by introducing new “attractions”.  With corporate sponsorship, they want a bigger, badder monster with more teeth.  So the scientists create a new dinosaur species.   And it’s bad, and intelligent and dominant.   Fast forward and nature runs amok and there is a need to put the genie back in the bottle, after much carnage both on the dinosaur and human side.   This is fun.  There were some great action sequences, and a decent story.   Like Kathleen Turner in Romancing the Stone, Bryce Dallas Howard (Ron’s little girl) looks better as she becomes more sweaty and frazzled.   The littlest little boy has to lose the Justin Bieber haircut as it is simple distracting.   The raptors and Lego’s “most interesting person in the world” (Chris Pratt) is also good.    Worth seeing on a big screen with big sound.
I also watched Warrior with Tom Hardy, and the new Pharoah (Yul Brennar from Exodus).   It was better than expected with a story of a broken family with a recovering Father (Nick Nolte) playing his recovering alcoholic well.   The story is predictable as two brothers enter a tournament for $5 prize against the best MMA fighters.    It kept my attention and the two main characters are interesting.  You do root for them both.  Tom Hardy with Mad Max and Batman under his belt recently, he plays another guy who says very little.  He says a lot with his eyes, but I have yet to find him a role which was as appealing as in Inception.    He was good and charismatic there.  I am glad that I saw this too.  It kept me up when I should have been sleeping.