Posts from the ‘Movies’ Category

Iron Man 3

I really should’ve posted this weeks ago, but life got busy.  Blame my workstation dying, having to take the time to build a new workstation, family issues, a trip to the North American Taiko Conference and more family issues.  But now I’m (once again) able to work through my backlog.

I went into Iron Man 3 with some pretty low expectations.  Friends told me it wasn’t a great Marvel movie, but my family and I felt the need to sit down and watch it before we went out to see Avengers: Age Of Ultron.  So I lowered my expectations down to somewhere around Iron Man 2‘s level and got comfy.

Y’know what?  I enjoyed it.  A lot.  Far far more than I expected to.  I’m not that familiar with The Mandarin from the comics, so the film’s twist there did not bother me the way it bothered some die hard comic fans.  Downey Jr’s take on PTSD was pretty refreshing for a comic book adaptation.  And overall I think it’s a much better film than Iron Man 2.

Is that a matter of improved storytelling or my significantly lowered expectations?  I’m not sure about that, but I am sure that I’ll definitely take the time to rewatch Iron Man 3 again before I bother rewatching Iron Man 2.

 

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R.I.P. Leonard Nimoy

I’m at a bit of a loss here.  When I heard Leonard Nimoy was hospitalized earlier this week, I knew deep down it would not end well.

I grew up watching Star Trek, even before I discovered Doctor Who.  I grew up watching Spock, and I learned a lot of things from him.  The most important one to my young mind was his line from the episode “Operation: Annihilate!” – “Pain is a thing of the mind.  The mind can be controlled.”

But he was so much more than Spock.  And he was fascinating to watch in any role.

A legend is gone.  Tonight, my family and I will be sitting down to watch Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan in his honor.  It’s the perfect night for that.

 

Predestination

“I’m an unmarried mother — at four cents a word. I write confession stories.”

Wow.  wow.  Just …. wow.

I first read the original source material, Robert A. Heinlein’s short story “All You Zombies,” back in high school.  Growing up watching Doctor Who made me kind of jaded when it comes to stories involving time travel, but “All You Zombies” totally upended the concept for me.

“Never do yesterday what should be done tomorrow.”

I figured the original story was unfilmable, so I never expected to see anyone develop a film based on it.  But here come the Spierig Brothers, and >BOOM< Predestination hits all of the right marks.  I was a little disappointed at first in them building up the whole Fizzle Bomber conceit, as if they felt they needed to shoehorn in an action-based subplot to pad out the film, but the ultimate conclusion left me more than satisfied. I have to say I think this is a very valid film adaptation of Heinlein’s work.

“If at last you do succeed, never try again.”

Ethan Hawke was good, but Sarah Snook was just fantastic.  After watching the film, I had to sit down and watch the “making of” featurette in its entirety.  Her level of creating the character that she played was as mind-boggling as Heinlein’s original concept.

And I cannot tell you the amount of joy I experienced in finally hearing someone say “A paradox may be paradoctored” in a film!

“I miss you dreadfully!”

Wow.

 

John Wick

Normally I would say “Wow!” here, but considering the star I think it’s more appropriate for me to say “Whoa!”

This is a fine example of how pure unmitigated vengeance can become a thing of beauty.

All cylinders are firing on target here.  Awesome cinematography, awesome stuntwork, great characterizations and a flashback format of storytelling that for once does not annoy me.  And like High Moon, I absolutely love how they did the subtitles for when the characters were speaking Russian.

My only complaint is that I have absolutely no memory of this film hitting the cinemas.  I wish I had known about it when it was first released last year, cuz I really would’ve loved to have seen it on the big screen.

 

The Interview

Haven’t seen it, never actually wanted to see it, but considering recent events now I REALLY DO want to see it.  Also considering recent events, I would love to be able to pay good money to see it on the big screen somewhere.

But all that is moot, at least for now.  Let’s take a moment to hear what Richard Roeper has to say about this, because he summed up all of my feelings far more succinctly than I possibly could:

 

 

We cannot let them win.

 

UPDATE:  Also, this:

 

Guardians Of The Galaxy

More catching up here – yet another flick that I saw quite a while back and I never posted the review.

Now this was an extremely pleasant surprise.  I went into this film knowing absolutely nothing about the source material.  The comic is a Marvel title that I had never bothered to read.  When the first trailer was released, I heard mixed messages – people I knew who were familiar with the source material didn’t like it because they said they were playing it too much for laughs, but people I knew who had not read the comics were really looking forward to seeing it because it looked like a fun sci-fi romp.

What did I think of it?

It was a fun sci-fi romp!  With a fantastic soundtrack!

Up until now, I had considered Captain America: The Winter Soldier to be my favorite Marvel Cinematic Universe film.  Now it’s tied with Guardians Of The Galaxy.  I think Winter Soldier is a better film than Guardians, but I also think Guardians is a whole lot more fun.  Winter Soldier is a well-made paranoic thriller at heart, whereas Guardians is more of a happy-go-lucky romp through sci-fi tropes that is elevated several levels by the impeccable soundtrack, Michael Rooker, and two fantastically realized CGI characters.

Guardians 2 cannot get here fast enough.  Again, this is making me less interested in Avengers: Age Of Ultron.  I’m really hoping that a future Avengers film will bring the Guardians together with the rest of the team.  We’ll see.

 

The Battery

An awesomely intriguing character study of two fellas doing what they need to do to try to survive a zombie apocalypse in New England.

Wow.  “Like rain on a tin roof.”  This film is amazing.