Archive | Action

Justice League

Justice League

Batman forms his league comprising of Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and others mentioned above, so that they can stop Steppenwolf from getting the boxes and destroying our planet. Can they learn to work together in time to stop the threat or will they fail? Will the team bring hope again? Seeing this may answer that for you.

Overall I was disappointed the most by the characters of this film. Aquaman wasn’t portrayed as King of Atlantis but more like just a dude who has special powers. While The Flash was funny, it was mostly by him being in the presence of superheroes and him showing us why he shouldn’t be there. The laughs were more about him being pretty much a coward. While I don’t know much about Cyborg, he was the most level headed one of the new characters. His character arc is probably the best option, yet his character seemed pretty mechanical. (No pun intended.)

The film’s most exciting part for me was a side scene where we see the Amazon’s defend one of the three boxes in question. The Amazons are just so fun to watch. I wish I could have said the same for the rest of the cast. I’m still feeling the disappointment.

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Thor: Ragnarok

Meet Hela

Forget Wonder Woman, there’s a new badass babe in town, well, in Asgard anyway. Wait until you meet Hela! Cate Blanchett prevails as the goddess of Death. She was incredible as the virgin queen, Elizabeth, but watching her transform into Hela is what most people will remember about Thor: Ragnarok. Hela is the first leading female villain for the Marvel feature films. Most of the film is a slapstick buddy comedy along the lines of Lethal Weapon, with a few too many inside jokes, but when shit gets real, it gets pretty intense and is an action flick worthy of the Avengers franchise.

While there is plenty of violence, there isn’t much sexual content (if any, really) so I am confident calling this a family friendly action film. It’s nice to see the tone change in this one, where you can tell that the director didn’t take things so seriously, which is pretty much what he is known for actually.

You will chuckle at the choices Thor makes, the colorful characters he picks up along the way, the buddy jokes between him and the “strongest Avenger” and they manage to tell a pretty compelling story about how the sins of our past can haunt us and the difficult realities of surviving in a dysfunctional family. I mean, consider Thor, his dad is the strongest force in Nine Realms, his adopted brother is always trying to kill him, his mom is dead, and now he’s just been told he isn’t the air to the throne, he has a psycho sister that he must deal with, all while trying to keep the audience laughing along. And, the funny thing is, he does! 

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I once wrote that one can’t be a critic and a filmmaker at the same time because the former is reactive while the latter is proactive. Yet, here I am contradicting myself, at least in a sense. While Apocalypto is already known, I desire to produce such short analyses simply out of respect. In his case it is because I believe that Mel Gibson, while already respected as a filmmaker, is actually still underrated. He is on the threshold of deserving the same reverence in film, both as art and entertainment, as Spielberg and Scorsese as great living directors. The masterpiece that is Apocalypto reminds us of his vision and reach.

Apocalypto, directed by Mel Gibson, produced by his Icon Productions along with Touchstone Pictures and released in 2006, is a film about revelation and revolution. The film follows a young tribesman named Jaguar Paw (Youngblood) as his idyllic life is uprooted by raiders who enslave his people and prepare him and others for sacrifice to Mayan deity Kukulkan. Jaguar Paw’s goal is to survive and make his way back to his expectant wife and their child who are trapped in a pit. Stripped of his tribe and with no home, he transforms from hunted to hunter as he claims his identity in life.

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Traitor of Mars

Starship Troopers: Traitor of Mars

Some old friends are back in this animated, kick-ass film about legendary Space Marines, err I mean the Mobile Infantry (MI). If you aren’t familiar with the characters, they are loosely based on the classic bildungsroman about a group of high school kids thrust into a war for survival of their species. An invading swarm of giant, spider-like bugs mercilessly slaughters anything in their path. Traitor of Mars is the latest film to feature many of the original characters from the 1997 film Starship Troopers, also written by Edward Neumeier. Because Traitor of Mars is an animated film, there is no limit to the amount of effects. And we finally get to see the power suits that Heinlein introduced to our world back in 1959, which arguably launched the mecha armor craze that is still strong today.

Overall it was just a fun film that I will definitely be adding to my Blu-ray collection. The addition of the much missed power suits alone makes it a must watch for fans of Heinlein’s work. And I had to scour the NET to find the old Microprose PC game from 2000 that I used to play that I swear heavily influenced certain elements of the film. Many times while watching the movie, I kept having flashbacks of playing it and wondering how long the Lost Patrol would last under my command. [Incidentally, there was a 2005 Starship Troopers PC game that apparently stunk.] 

If you are a fan of Neumeier’s other writing, I think this one holds up to his style, and I really loved the end credits metal adaption of Basil Poledouris’ original score from 1997. It made me want to suit up and jump – because, after all nobody lives forever!

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Hitmans Bodyguard

The Hitman’s Bodyguard

A ‘demoted’ top protection agent (Reynolds) is manipulated by his ex-girlfriend into guarding the life of his mortal enemy (Jackson), the world’s most notorious hit man. The two men are thrown together for a time-sensitive, explosively dangerous journey from London to The Hague. Chasing them with orders to kill is a relentless army of assassins put on their trail by a European dictator (Oldman) who is on trial for “crimes against humanity.” Will they make the court’s imposed five PM deadline for Jackson to testify, or will the dictator walk free? Will they thrash the assassins? Will they even survive each other? You’ll have to watch, laugh, and see.

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