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  #21  
Old 03-04-2017, 04:41 PM
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Moonlight

After the mix up at the Oscars, I had to watch it, right?

Truthfully, I hadn't actually heard anything about the movie until the list of nominations were announced for The Oscars. And even then, I was sure that La La Land was going to take the top honour. Not that I enjoyed La La Land all that much, honestly. But it seemed to have a massive backing from the Academy and it was shocking to me that it didn't win.

Moonlight, itself, was actually something special. But really I felt as though the ending of it was enough to actually, physically, annoy me. The first act of the movie was utterly superb, truth be told. Mahershala Ali was, undoubtedly, the best character in this movie and it isn't even close. He deserved the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.

That said, all of the potential in the first act is soon frittered away by the end of the third. I really liked the story that Moonlight tried to tell but I really felt totally unsatisfied after it. I get that, at the heart of the movie, this was a coming of age, watershed picture. But I felt as though it lacked any sort of punch. There are outstanding moment throughout the movie and the acting is brilliant, there's no doubt. But the final act is a total let down and basically crippled the movie. I enjoyed it but it lacked drama in the name of character evolution. An Oscar winner for Best Picture should be able to do both.

3/5
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  #22  
Old 03-09-2017, 09:35 PM
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Get Out-9/10

After watching the first trailer and reading the premise for Get Out, I was almost sure they would toss the N-word around more than once, but that didn't happen here. It's definitely a refreshing change of pace for a film about racism between white and black people, because there was no need to rely on that word to get a reaction. Get Out shows racism can come in other forms, with the white characters having more condescending, patronizing, and passive-aggressive personas.

I have mixed feelings on the big reveal towards the end, but so far Get Out has to be the front-runner for the best horror film in 2017. Jordan Peele delivers a truly special and creative horror film. Racism is the foundation for the story, but the subject never feels exploitative in the way Peele chooses to approach it. Get Out is a thought-provoking and unnerving film, loaded with so many layers, there's a good balance of horror and humor (Lil Rel Howery is hilarious), and the tension from start to finish is just excellent, because you never know what's going to happen next. Also, I think it's safe to say Get Out has one of the best opening scenes in a horror film.

Fist Fight-5/10

I was ready to trash this after the first 40-50 minutes, but Fist Fight redeems itself towards the end. One of the bigger problems for me is, the movie relies on crude humor and dick jokes way too much for the majority of the movie. Also, they felt the need to constantly remind everyone the teachers (excluding Charlie Day) are immoral loose cannons and nutcases. I get the whole point is to show Charlie Day is the only normal and respectable teacher in the school, and that's supposed to be the "joke," but it gets to the point, where the constant reminders are just repetitive and kind of annoying.

With all that said, it's kind of hard to not root for Charlie Day's character here. He's an honest and nice guy, but he's a spineless pushover, so you're just waiting for the moment, when he finally decides to stand up for himself. Day is a good foil for Ice Cube's character, playing the wimpy and uptight nerd, and I laughed a few times. Fist Fight is a so-so comedy, and the set up for the path to Andy's (Day) transformation and Andy breaking out of his shell is cliched and it's been done before, but the formula still works here.

March 3-5 & The Upcoming Weekend

No big surprise, but Logan debuted at #1 in the week-to-week charts with $88,411,916 ($300,649,174 for the worldwide total).

Logan is riding a strong wave of momentum with a lot of buzz and positive reviews (a 92% on Rotten Tomatoes), and it'll be a tight race to #1 in the week-to-week charts with Kong: Skull Island opening with the wide release tomorrow, but according to Box Office Mojo.com, Kong: Skull Island should debut at #1 after a close race. The trailers for KSI are amazing, but I can't stop thinking about the parallels between this film and Godzilla (2014): a lot of hype, great trailers, and a disappointing and underwhelming final product.
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  #23  
Old 03-12-2017, 10:53 PM
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Oh man, I've been far away from WZ for a long time now. Been very busy working to promote some movies in my country - if anyone cares, I've been working with Anthony Hopkins, Nicholas Hoult and Felicity Jones's Collide and Emma Watson/Tom Hanks's The Circle.

Next week, I'll move to television with a great deal to promote AMC channel, that's now investing in here. Their focus in on the third season of "Into The Badlands" I've also had one-one conversations with Andrew Lincoln, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Norman Reedus from "The Walking Dead". All in all, it's been some very busy months.

I've seen tons of movies since the last update, but I'll be sure to just talk about the current highlights.

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The Edge of Seventeen

Absolutely loved the characters and the performance by the cast in this movie. At times it made me feel like I was watching a mix between "Easy A", "The Duff" and "Me, Earl and The Dying Girl", based on the emotions played out in it. It was funny, it was sad and it sure as hell was entertaining.

Hailee Steinfeld was outstanding in the lead role and she carried the movie alone. Her character is that one girl, that we all know, that has low self-esteem because of the scars in her life - of course somehow, someway, she thinks that dating other scared guys is the way to go. Spoiler alert, it isn't. You feel for her, of course you do, but by the end of it and specially if you are a guy and also the big brother, you specially feel sorry for her brother Darian (Blake Jenner).

It's a fun movie experience and if you have the time, give it a shot. It's a light movie even though it plays with death, suicide and betrayal subjects.

Rating: 3,5/5

Logan

Fantastic movie. I made the official review for this movie, but no way I'm going to translate it all, so I'll just leave my analogy that at the time seemed a perfect fit.

"Logan" is the car you have for some time now. You thought about replacing it but you never did, because you thought it was still good enough to go. In reality, that old car had to many memories attached to it and you just couldn't do it. It's its last big trip. The car is worned out and you don't know if you'll make it to your destination. In every turn, you feel your heart beating faster as the engine starts to fail. It somehow keeps on going. In that melancholic, sometimes boring, last trip.

"Logan" needs an open mind and a free spirit for you to enjoy what it is... that sad and nostalgic farewell of the old car - read it as Hugh Jackman's Wolverine.

(it's loosely translated for the introduction and the ending of the review, loved the movie).

Rating: 4/5

Kong: Skull Island

Flat characters. Seriously. Brie Larson and Tom Hiddleston are a waste in this movie. It's somehow a cool flick thanks to the universe they are building with the great CGI, sound effects and action sequences. I'm excited for the sequel.

Seriously, I can't really say anything more about this movie. Watched it in IMAX 3D and it's the way to go because this is totally a special effects movie that actually gets better with the best quality.

Kong is indeed king.

Rating: 2,5/5
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  #24  
Old 03-16-2017, 11:40 PM
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John Wick: Chapter 2- 3/10

I honestly don't understand why so many critics are gushing over this.

Chapter 2 really feels like a retread of the first film, and monotony is a big problem here. Maybe I'm in the minority on this, but you can only get so many thrills out of watching John Wick shooting, stabbing, and pummeling his way through gauntlets of disposable mercenaries and henchmen.

I know we're only two films in, but if Chapter 3 happens, John Wick needs a worthy adversary. Yeah, storyline wise, I get it. D’Antonio is supposed to be a powerful character, but he just comes off as another cliched, dull, and uninteresting crime lord. John Wick is supposed to be this nearly invincible and unstoppable bad ass, so he really needs someone to tip the scales, because we're two films in, and I'm already bored with the "crime lord sends a seemingly endless wave of goons to stop and kill John Wick" formula.

The fight scenes and the interactions with Common and Ruby Rose were the best parts of the movie for me, and truth be told, I would've enjoyed the film more if everything was limited to Reeves VS Rose and Reeves VS Common.

Logan- 9/10

If Logan is truly Hugh Jackman's last film as Wolverine, then it's one hell of a sendoff.

The Wolverine missed the mark, but Logan succeeds as a more emotional and gritty film. The R rating and more blood and brutal violence helps, and Hugh Jackman delivers a strong performance, easily his best in the X-Men series and The Wolverine films. The relationship between Logan and Laura and Logan going back and forth with not wanting to accept Laura is one of the main highlights here. Logan also benefits from a good supporting cast, with Dafne Keen, and Patrick Stewart portraying a fragile shell of what he used to be. And Boyd Holbrook always delivers, when he's playing the role of a skeevy asshole.

Logan has to be a top choice for the best superhero film in 2017 so far, and looking at all the trailers and the other superhero films, Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2 is the only film that'll have a chance to live up to all the hype and expectations.

March 10-12 & The Upcoming Weekend

No real surprise, but Kong: Skull Island debuted at #1 in the week to week charts with $61,025,472 ($162,496,700 for the current worldwide total).

According to Box Office Mojo's predictions, Beauty And The Beast is expected to open with a big debut at #1 in the $150,000,000-$170,000,000 range for the weekend. BATB has a 67% on Rotten Tomatoes, and there's a good chance that rating will drop tomorrow and in the following days. Nothing in the trailers for BATB really interests me, but I'm glad Emma Watson has a big role in one of the more highly anticipated films this year.

The Belko Experiment has a 47% on RT, and the movie is only being released in 1,341 theaters. With TBE, it's one of those films, where I don't really care about the RT rating or negative reivews. The trailers are basically promising a brutal horror film with a lot nasty violence and bloody mayhem, and you can tell they're catering to that specific group of horror fans, who enjoy that style of horror.
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:43 PM
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I tell you what people, Logan just might be the very best film in the X-Men Cinematic Universe. (In case you don't know the XMCU includes X-Men, X2: X-Men United, X-Men 3: Last Stand, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Wolverine, Logan, X-Men: First Class, X-Men: Days of Future Past, X-Men: Apocalypse, and Deadpool)

Logan hit on and was successful at everything. It had the action, the drama, and the storyline. Not to mention that Hugh acted his ass off. Honestly, Logan is not a happy film. I don't want to spoil anything for you but it is not your typical X-Men movie with lots of humor and happy moments. This movie is sad and it is a wonderful movie. Yet another example of how far ahead Marvel is than DC in the film industry. Here's to hoping that Wonder Woman is as good as the trailers make it look.
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  #26  
Old 03-24-2017, 12:16 AM
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The Belko Experiment- 7/10

2017 is off to a good start for horror.

Towards the end, they run out of places to go with the moral conundrums for murder, and certain members of the more peaceful crowd make the decision to abandon their objections to the game. The cast is solid, and John C. McGinley provides some good comic relief, but Tony Goldwyn easily steals the show. Goldwyn really owns his character, as the vicious leader for the group that wants to kill, and Goldwyn delivers some of the best moments in TBE, when he's chewing the scenery.

If you're looking for a thought-provoking storyline about everyone looking out for themselves, or (and I'm jumping into hyperbole here) a movie that gives a whole new meaning to the "it's a dog eat dog world" saying, then you'll probably walk out of this one disappointed.

But The Belko Experiment really works as a bloodbath horror film with more than enough mayhem and carnage. It's sick and twisted fun, and kudos to James Gunn for some good morbid and tongue-in-cheek humor. There's a scene, where a Latin version of California Dreamin' is playing in the background during an execution for a select group, and you just have to laugh at the irony of that song playing in the background during an execution. Basically, you should know what you're getting into with TBE after watching the trailers and the commercials, and there's a reason why the "Office Space meets Battle Royale" quote is at the top of one of the movie posters for this.

The Belko Experiment made its budget back during its opening weekend. The current total sits at $5,470,995, and that's off of a reported production budget of $5,000,000. TBE had a decent amount of buzz surrounding it, and I'm not complaining about Greg McLean's work here, but I have to believe the movie would've had more hype behind it of James Gunn directed it. My only guess is, he's been too busy with Guardians Of The Galaxy over the past couple of years. That, and TBE being sandwiched between the releases for Beauty & The Beast and Power Rangers back to back didn't help matters.

March 17-19 & The Upcoming Weekend

As expected, Beauty And The Beast had a strong opening weekend with $174,750,616, and the current worldwide total sits at $461,999,926.

I can't say I'm all that excited about the two big releases for the weekend. Life looks like a run-of-the-mill sci-fi/thriller about an alien life form threatening earth. The fight to survive on the space station looks like a played out scenario I've seen one too many times, but I'll watch it for Jake Gyllenhaal and Ryan Reynolds.

I'm really not sure what to think about Power Rangers. For a number of reasons, I can understand why you really can't make a campy and more cartoonish Power Rangers film that captures the spirit of the show in 2017, and I understand they're not targeting someone, who's close to my age or older than me. But some fans of the show, or people, who grew up loving all things Power Rangers are looking for some nostalgia.

Also, going by the trailers, I'm not too crazy about the approach to turn the Rangers (or some of them) into the stereotypical rebellious teenage punks, or lost causes, who are running out of second chances. I get the need to go for a more serious tone, but so far, the footage with Elizabeth Banks as Rita Repulsa and Bryan Cranston as Zordon are the only promising parts of the trailers and commercials for me.

Apparently, Becky G's Trini is gay, and RJ Cyler's ( playing the Blue Ranger) Billy is autistic, and it's considered to be another attempt to create more realistic characters. David Yost (the original Blue Ranger) is praising the changes, and this is something I didn't know about until I ran across the interview today, but Yost was harassed on the set of the original show for being gay.

According to reports, Haim Saban is saying they have a planned story arc for six movies, but there's no guarantees that it'll happen. I'm not too surprised, but so far, the negative reviews for Power Rangers are starting to pile up, and the movie has a 45% on Rotten Tomatoes. On top of that, according to Box Office Mojo's predictions, Beauty And The Beast should come in at #1 in the week to week charts for an easy repeat that's close to the $77,000,000 mark for the weekend. Meanwhile, Power Rangers is expected to pull in $38,000,000. Power Rangers has a reported production budget of $100,000,000, and if BOM's predictions are right, then we're looking at a big flop, or it'll be a tough uphill battle to make a real profit, and justify more sequels.
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Old 03-24-2017, 05:03 PM
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Logan - 9.5/10

I'd finally managed to get some time to watch Logan earlier this week. Everyone I've talked to, any reports I've read about the movie have had nothing bot extreme praise for it and the praise is well earned. I'll try not to give away any major spoilers, just some basic stuff, most of which was already known before the flick came out.

The film is set in the year 2029 and the future of mutants is about as bleak as possible as there hasn't been one mutant birth in some 25 years. Logan is visibly much older and his body is all but worn out due to the fact that his healing factor is petering out. He still heels quickly, but not nearly as extensively as before as his body a veritable road map of scar tissue. One reason why his healing factor is failing is because his body is being poisoned by the adamantium bonded to his skeleton, which is a nice little nod to long time comic book fans as that's something that was taken straight from the comics. Logan makes a living as a chauffer and consumes great amounts of alcohol as a means of dealing with his pain wracked body; Logan lives in an abandoned smelting factory on the Mexican border where he cares for an ailing Charles Xavier, who's about 90+ years old now and himself is suffering the ravages of old age and suffers from a neurodegenerative disease that causes him to periodically have seizures, memory loss and various other symptoms that affect his telepathic abilities that Logan is able to keep under control via medicines that he purchases.

Logan is soon offered a job, one he reluctantly accepts, from a woman named Gabriela Lopez who wants him to escort her and an 11 year old girl named Laura to a place called Eden in North Dakota. They're on the run from a company Lopez worked for called Transigen in which the head of the company, Zander Rice, has hired a team of cybernetically enhanced mercenaries called the Reavers to retrieve Laura. Laura is eventually revealed to have been cloned with Logan's DNA and she was carried to term within Lopez which means that, technically, she's Logan's daughter and has quite a bit in common with him.

Logan was given an R rating with damned good reason as it's packed with graphic violence, language and just blood on top of blood. While some of the violence might be gratuitous in most other cases, there are reasons for it in the movie as it's all part of the story. The story itself is never outshined by the violence and is only enhanced by it because when you get right down to it, Wolverine is an R rated comic book character with powers that included enhanced strength, stamina, agility, senses, an accelerated healing ability that completely regenerates destroyed tissue in minutes or seconds, retractable bone claws and an unbreakable metal infused to every bone in his body. The guy's literally designed from the ground up to engage in brutal, savage hand to hand combat.

If you're looking for a happy go lucky sort of movie where the heroes all ride off into the sunset together, then isn't for you. It's a dark, stark, heavily dramatic movie in which Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart give what may well be the best performances of their careers. There are a number of touching moments in the movie that are legitimately tear inducing when you factor in the general dark atmosphere of the movie itself and the right on the surface symbolism of what's going on. When you see the ravages that time has taken on Logan and Xavier, it's easy to catch yourself thinking about people in your own lives that you've lost; if you allow yourself to think about that, it allows a movie about one man that's a brilliant, peaceful old man with a powerful mind that's now becoming as crippled s his body and another man who's essentially the physical embodiment of physical vigor, toughness suffering as the things that made him so touch are now turning on him and causing him to slowly die to hit home in ways you don't expect from movies of this genre.

If this is Hugh Jackman's very last time playing the character, then he's gone out on just about the highest note possible. In my opinion, both Jackman and Stewart put on Oscar worthy performances even though Oscar season is almost a year off. There's not a lot of CGI in this film and I was surprised to find out that it cost less than $100 million to make. The lack of CGI, focus on the storytelling, the brutal action, etc. does put me sort of in mind of westerns like Unforgiven where the aged gunslinger out of necessity has to take care of business one last time.
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Old 03-29-2017, 09:31 PM
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Power Rangers was cool. The third act was bad, but until there it was really good. Chemistry, it's funny, sometimes cheesy like the TV Show and I had a good time. The Blue ranger is my favorite. It has potential, but seriously, before they suit up, it's a good movie. After they suit up, logic went to another planet and it was bad.

Rating: 3/5


I've seen the Ghost In The Shell live action adaptation and I did not like it one bit. I was really hyped and excited for this movie mainly because I am such a big fan of the material, but it just doesn't translate all that well in the big screen.

The visuals are stunning and the action sequences are as good as one would expect, but it's the tone of the movie. It's so boring, so empty and seriously it's robotic. The dialogue between the characters is pretty much a play by play of the plot. No emotional depth or in the very least, no sign of empathy towards anyone from the cast.

Scarlett is fine I guess. She even masters the robot walking, but the long stares and the close ups, really dragged the movie down. Don't expect to watch an entertaining movie, because it's not a popcorn flick. It's an arrogant movie, filled with CGI, that tries to be more than what it is.

They tried to have a "Blade Runner" or an "A.I" and ended up having a slow "Transformers". Transformers is already bad, but at least, one can watch it on a Saturday afternoon and think: "meh, time went fast though". With "Ghost In The Shell", you'll expect the same result in the very least, and instead you'll have "nope, not watching it again for sure".

Rating: 2/5
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Old 03-30-2017, 11:53 PM
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Kong: Skull Island- 3/10

Kong is awe-inspiring, and he's more imposing than he's ever been. Still, I had a hard time getting into this one. KSI is loaded with some good visual eye candy and grandiose set pieces, but the movie is short on any real thrills or genuine excitement. Samuel L. Jackson is Samuel L. Jackson, and John C. Reilly is good for a few laughs, but Tom Hiddleston, John Goodman, and Brie Larson are stuck with dull and one-dimensional characters.

For me, KSI peaks after Kong attacks the helicopters in the early stages of the movie, and I honestly believe I could've left the movie after that scene without missing anything special. Maybe it's another case of me getting my hopes up too high after the trailers and all the hype, but KSI definitely ranks high up on my list of disappointments for 2017.

The post-credits scene is good, but I can't say I'm looking forward to Godzilla VS Kong and the planned MonsterVerse. According to reports, eight writers are working on the script for Godzilla VS Kong. I want to have an open mindset, but eight writers working on a screenplay for a Godzilla VS King Kong film has all the makings of everything devolving into a big mess.

Life- 2/10

Boring.

Life is very, very boring, and it's a paint-by-numbers "bad things happen, when a space crew finds signs of life from, or on Mars" sci-fi/thriller. Basically, Life just goes through the motions, following the patterns of so many sci-fi/thrillers about Mars, alien life forms, and the fight to survive on a space station, when said alien life form tries to kill everyone. Life is one of those movies, where the main characters make one stupid mistake after another, and a few close calls couldn't save this tedious film.

Life's ending delivers a decent enough surprise, but I can't say it's a genuinely shocking ending. When the survivors are going over their plans to stop Calvin (the alien), it's not too hard to figure out what's going to happen, as the final moments of the movie unfold.

March 24-26 & The Upcoming Weekend

It's two weeks in a row at #1 for Beauty And The Beast. BATB pulled in $90,426,717 over the weekend to bring the current worldwide total to $751,163,125. Power Rangers debuted at #2 with $40,300,288, and the current worldwide total sits at $67,400,017. Life opened up at #4 with $12,501,936 ($31,757,305 for the current worldwide total), and it's no real surprise, but CHiPs (awful, awful trailers) debuted at #7 with $7,722,802 ($11,571,720 for the worldwide total).

Out of all the new releases, The Zookeeper's Wife is the only film I'm truly interested in. The Boss Baby? I just get the feeling I've seen everything I need to see in the trailers. Ghost In The Shell is the big release for Friday. Going by Box Office Mojo.com's predictions, Beauty And The Beast will have an easy three-peat at #1 in the week to week charts, and there's a chance the movie won't see any real competition until Smurfs: The Lost Village hits theaters next week.
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Old 04-15-2017, 08:34 PM
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The Fate of The Furious: Good popcorn flick. F. Gary Gray did an excelent job directing the movie. It's not about the tunning lifestyle anymore, it's not about the cars. It's a movie about super-heroes and it's not a bad thing. It's not original either, but the franchise does have it's place in the market. It understands that isn't winning any awards and they don't even try to do it. They want the mainstream attention and the big bucks and not all franchises know how to present it's value and just be flat out entertaining. (Transformers, looking at you). The plot has big holes, it's very focused on Vin Diesel's Dom and the secondary characters lost a LOT because of it. Yet, it was a joy to watch. The artwork department deserves a lot of praise and the stunts too. It's FGG's vision and I dug it. Charlize Theron was terrible. - 3/5
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