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215 reviews in total 
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29 out of 69 people found the following review useful:
A welcome return to what made the films great to begin with, 1 July 2015

I'm confused by the terrible percentage of positive ratings on RT for the latest installment in the Terminator franchise. Now because of the lackluster buzz I may have adjusted my expectations a bit but to say this ambitious, creative film is dull and uneventful is just plain ridiculous. Now any real Terminator fan will tell you the franchise truly ended after the second film. Although the third one was a bit of fun and well Salvation was such an atrocity it doesn't even count. The cleverness and feel of the films was well terminated. Well I'm happy to say this latest addition resurrects it. Not to all of it's past glory of course but it finally puts us in a place where the franchise could once again bloom into something truly relevant. I'm not gonna go into the specifics because I don't want to spoil anything. But the timeline has been sort of reset and because of that the franchise has been reinvigorated in a way so that if you are a terminator fan that potential feels very exciting. Filled with some top notch action sequences and a welcome combination of retro and present day effects wizardry like Jurassic World in that respect the film takes us back to what made the films so engrossing to begin with. Although far from flawless it's a fun wild ride that has much more on it's mind than 99 percent of the movies wide released this year. Schwarzenegger has never been better and Jai Courtney is a solid addition to the cast as Kyle Reese. Emilia Clarke sadly underwhelms as Sarah Connor she never seems to nail the right blend of vulnerability and bad assedness she needs to have. That being said it's hard not to compare her performance with the iconic turn from Linda Hamilton. Although decent she leaves something to be desired. And as for the films execution. it starts off beautifully with the best judgement day and war depiction yet but falters slightly when getting to the films somewhat confusing and ever converging time lines. Honestly, I'm not sure it all made complete sense but I was completely immersed in the story telling and intrigued none the less. I can only hope that people ignore the reviews and give this interpretation a chance so that us fans can be blessed with another outing by all involved. ****.25/5

6 out of 26 people found the following review useful:
More like Half Magic Mike, 1 July 2015

I'm not sure how to review this film. The first one was a surprisingly well rounded film about male strippers which was fun but had an undertone of sadness running through it. It wasn't really a film that needed a sequel. But here we are with Magic Mike XXL. those looking for a film to continue the development of the title character's story line will be disappointed as will those looking for the original fun streaks to be supersized. Here we have a film with characters who are somewhat interesting and definitely charismatic but the storytelling lacks any real depth in getting to now who they are. Now I guess that would be fine if it delivered on the other goods. But it doesn't although the dancing is impressive the film lacks the playful sexuality that made the first one so appealing. Instead it plays as an inconsistent underdeveloped comedy of sorts. It's no doubt that the film has charm and the cast is game for some improv work but most of the ramblings feel pointless and the overall execution almost feels dreamlike and directionless. I'd be lying if I didn't say the film had some fun to offer but it's too weighed down by trying to boost up it's own self esteem to find the movie it should have been. **.75/5

22 out of 51 people found the following review useful:
Worthy successor, 12 June 2015

A worthy successor to Jurassic Park. Fares much better than the other sequels but lacks the story and character depth of the original masterpiece as well as the its killer suspense. The performances are solid and the direction is decent but a little generic.It however makes up for it with great special effects, fantastic action sequences and an immense amount of bloody dino carnage. At times it can be a bit much but it holds together fairly well and culminates to a ferocious finale that left the audience screaming and clapping. A solid summer thrill ride that does a great job of reinvigorating the franchise but the best advice i can give the makers of the unavoidable follow up is too slow it down a bit. Anticipation makes the proceedings that much more effective.

22 out of 41 people found the following review useful:
d.o.a., 13 March 2014

Wow so I just returned from seeing need for speed based off the popular plot less video game series. Well those of you hoping for a two hr and ten minute adaptation that sticks close to the source material are in luck because this film is dreadful. Undeveloped barely one dimensional characters, an endless amount of clichés, uninspired direction, some truly terrible editing, sloppily executed cinematography and non existent 3-D. It's just too bad that Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul the main reason I saw the film shows up in a star vehicle doomed to fail and with a one note unintentionally funny, overly dramatic and forced brooding "I swear I'm a bad ass with a heart of gold " performance. Along for the ride are lots of annoying supporting characters a metro sexual non threatening villain and lots of pretty cars that get bashed up in the most ridiculous ways. those searching for a shred of believably should turn their sights on the fast and furious franchise because this franchise nonstarter is D.O.A. The worst movie I've paid to see in a decade or at least the last five years. .5/5

Gravity (2013)
1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Cinematic Brilliance, 4 October 2013

When I see a truly great movie it leaves me speechless. There's so much going through my mind. Because a great film is one that can't be taken at face value it inspires thought and leaves an imprint on you. At it's surface Gravity is a Hollywood popcorn movie about survival in space during a horrific accident but underneath it and most importantly it is a film about the human experience. From it's wonderfully entrancing opening shot Director Alfonso Cuaron immerses you in the environment of space. It's the closest experience many of us will get to actual space travel. We meet our central characters executing their assigned tasks and goofing off a bit, and than they get an emergency message that debris from a damaged satellite is heading towards them. It strikes with no sound, because there is no sound in space. it's a truly nightmarish sequence that leads to some of the most horrifying moments you've ever seen on screen. The film is a tour de force from beginning to end. A monumental technical achievement, terrifyingly beautiful but what makes this film so successful is in the way the heavy effects that drive the film blend with it's emotional core making for a truly engaging experience. When Sandra Bullock sheds her suit and floats in a fetal position you can feel the subtext of rebirth as well as finding the will to survive and echoes of that in the films conclusion. Gravity is a film about death but it's also a film about life and loss and the will to survive not just in the events that are happening on screen but everything that happens to us on a day to day basis. Director Alfonso Cuaron a master film maker directs the film with an eerie simplicity challenging us with nearly unbearable tension and delving deeper into something truly spiritual. George Clooney leaves a charismatic imprint in a small but important role and the central performance by Sandra Bullock is truly remarkable and quite possibly the best of her dramatic career. She's a definite shoe in for a best performance nod and anyone going against her will have a hard run of it. The movie flows like liquid cinematic poetry covering every inch with cinematic brilliance. Gravity isn't just one of the best films I've ever seen it's an amazing experience. *****/5

4 out of 11 people found the following review useful:
disappointing, 12 September 2013

James Wan is hot right now. After establishing himself in The Saw Series and than bludgeoning that franchise into the ground he made a huge return with Insidious establishing that he was great at setting a suspenseful mood enhanced with nightmarish imagery. He solidified those talents with this year's genre masterpiece The Conjuring, the scariest movie I've ever seen and an absolute instant classic. With hopes raised so high it's hard for Insidious Chapter 2 to not be a disappointment. I just never thought it would be this big of a disappointment. Following the events of the original movie we once again find ourselves with the Lambert clan as the mystery is enhanced and unraveled concerning the demonic presence that wanted to get into Josh's body. I really loved the first film. The first half is absolutely terrifying in an expected sort of way but when the plot veers into astral projection it lost a lot of people but not me it was so bizarre and twisted I found myself even more freaked out. People who had a huge problem with the film's second half will have an even harder time with this film because it mostly takes place in that bizarre universe. There are some clever goods here not to spoil anything for those intent on suffering through it. But despite the cleverness it's feels overly gimmicky, a lot of it just doesn't make any sense and the attempts at juvenile humor are only partially funny because of their forced absurdity and not that they are breaking any of the film's tension like in the first film. As for that heavy dread induced atmosphere he has become such a master at. it's not existent here we are instead punished with bouts of forced melodrama, insane campiness and one cheap scare after the next (I mean really this baby walker needs to go). Sadly there are some good ideas here. The only summation I could come up with especially with the vastly superior Conjuring and this film coming out so close together is that he spent all of his time executing that first movie and when approached about a sequel to Insidious he said awesome I have a great idea for that flick and than just kinda lost interest. Too sad because what could have been a unique spin on the haunted movie sub genre has instead become a by the numbers unintentional laugh fest. Not to say it's the worst film I've seen this year or the worst horror sequel (the grudge 2) but it's definitely a franchise killer. **.5/5

2 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
fun but shallow, 29 August 2013

There's been a lot of positive buzz around this movie and it mostly delivers. It's not the generic slasher film the trailers present it to be, it's a bit more complex. The film centers on a upper class couple celebrating their 35th wedding anniversary who invite their kids and their significant others up for the weekend. But their celebration is cut short when a couple masked weirdos in animal masks crash the bash with cross bows and axes and begin dispatching the guests in gruesomely hilarious ways one by one. There's a lot to like here, the execution by Adam Wingard is clever the family dynamics and the victims reactions are the best parts because their played up for laughs.The film is neither a sort of send up of the material like Cabin in the Woods or a satire like Scream. Which makes it more of a straight forward horror film than both of those which is the films biggest flaw. Because in that way it doesn't really deliver. The film lacks a strong, confident atmosphere instead opting for laughs and fun rather than powerful, nightmarish moments like the strangers and it isn't very ambitious in terms of it's subtext either like The Purge. In fact the film becomes a little to complex midway through and looses any type of scary edge the film may have possessed when revealing the incompetent villains. There's definitely something to be said about leaving more to the imagination.The film lacks the polish of more standard Hollywood fare and sometimes comes across a bit too amateurish. So what we are left with is an entertaining, clever but not overly intelligent horror film that feels a bit hollow. It's certainly not on the same level as this year's horror masterpiece The Conjuring. But surely there is enough promise and entertainment value here to merit a recommendation. That being said I don't think it's necessary for a theater viewing. I feel like it would work just as well on DVD at home with a bunch of drunken friends so you can enjoy all of the funny stuff loudly, intentional or otherwise. All in all it's a fun ride but there's very little you haven't seen before and most of it has been executed better elsewhere. 3/5

1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Better than 3 and 4, 29 August 2013

Everything and the kitchen sink defininitely describes this overworked franchise perfectly. As the latest installment spoofs Paranormal activity, Mama, Black Swan, inception, Evil Dead, Madea and so many other films. Like the last 3 installments most of the jokes are misses but some of them hit way better than they should. And with that being said I'll say that the latest entry is the best the franchise has been since the second film for better or worse. As the film opens Lindsay Lohan and Charlie Sheen are in a bed ready to get it on as they spoof their various life choices cleverly for the most part. But as they are murdered by a sinister force their three children go missing. Months later they are found in the woods "Mama" style by a couple of stoners (Snoop Dogg) and returned to their Uncle (sexy Simon Rex) and his new wife (a perfectly vacuos Ashley Tisdale). Moving things along a spirit haunts their house, they have a super religious hispanic maid, Tisdale rediscovers her love for the ballet with a jealous new lesbian understudy and they go ins earch for an evil book that they changed the ghost into what she is. It's all fairly nonsensical but some of it is actually funny not enough to merit a recommendation but if your super bored or feel you must you could do a lot worse like Scary Movie 3 or 4. **.5/5

3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Return to form, 29 August 2013

A vast improvement after the dragged out and seemingly unnecessary sequel Hatchet 3 returns with an electrifying opening scene returning it mostly to it's gory roots. Along for the ride this time around are a cast of horror vets including Caroline Williams of Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, Derek Mears of the Jeepers Creepers films and a few others. Danielle Harris reprises her role as Mary Beth much better and contained in this installment. After murdering Crowley she returns to town blood soaked with a rifle and is immediately arrested. But a curious reporter joins forces with her to end it once and for all. There are some super impressive death scenes as should be expected including a face fisting, many creative decapitations and countless other body parts being removed. but what makes the material work most of all in this sequel is that it has a point and is heading towards a slightly rushed but fulfilling conclusion to the Hatchet trilogy. One can only hope for more carnage with a sequel that hopefully moves the action into the mainland and Mardi gras. ***.5/5

8 out of 15 people found the following review useful:
Worthy Successor, 29 August 2013

Those hoping for another Shaun of the Dead will be disappointed but this one fares much better than hot fuzz. Not to say any of them are bad at all. This one centers on a group of friends reuniting to do a legnday pub crawl they couldn't accomplish in their younger years. But upon returning they discover the town has been overrun with alien robots. Many laughs ensue as well as touching on thoughtful, emotionally resonant themes like friendship, growing up, and discovering ourselves. It really is a mostly great film almost perfectly engaging until a strange drawn out secondary finale unfitting the material and it's direction. Still it's a solid flick that boasts more laughs than most of the films this year. The second best comedy of the year behund this is the end. ***.5/5

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