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World War Z (2013)
Not terrible, but virtually no redeeming features.
I'm sure some of the nonsensical plot points were difficult to put on the big screen, I mean, the story seemed like an overwrought, worthless husk. But even with the premise that big, dumb action movies can be fun if you switch off your brain, man, this is not enjoyable for technical reasons.
The build up, timing, execution and flow of just about everything action related in this movie was bad. Just flat out terrible action sequences that just *chop* *chop* *chop* from each 1 second clip to the next one with no care, consideration, or thought.
Don't get me wrong, he could be a good director in another genre, I've never seen Monsters Ball, the acting in this movie was passable for a popcorn movie, but action is definitely not his thing having seen this and Quantum.
The Descent (2005)
A bad movie
That really does tear it. Never trust the British press with a British film. Rose tinted glasses anyone? I've seen much much better straight to video/DVD horror movies. This was just a badly written, stupid, pointless, not scary, boring, poorly directed, poorly edited, did i say stupid? film.
From the director of dog soldiers... not a great start, I'm not a fan of dog soldiers, but at least it was moderately fun to watch once and laugh at the mockney accents and attempts at humor.
This is well directed and put together as dog soldiers. (Not a compliment.) However it comes without the fun/silly side of dog soldiers had to make me not hate it. As a result I hated this and wanted them all to die as quickly as possible.
It starts off with delusions of being a psychological horror/thriller. One of the girls has been in an accident and "sees things." After a while of periodically cutting to a girl blowing out candles on a birthday cake and generally going NO-WHERE with this concept, they decide "F***K IT, let just gore the hell out of this one."
A special shout goes to the red syrup pond, this might just put blood and gore out of film-fashion it was so silly.
The Incredibles (2004)
100% positive, 0 negative points about this work of art. Iron giant and then this? Brad Bird is one to watch! Best Pixar film so far, by quite a margin.
The 'walking shoulders' bounding slowly through the jungle, stretching, panting, and swatting flies is just an example of one of the wonderful nuanced little moments that piece together with the technically brilliant, and perfectly thought out action sequences.
The characters take punches, bullets, torture, impending death with fantastic realism - no quarter is given because this is marketed as a kids film. X-Men wussed out much more than this. In fact, you can stick your boring X-men, and all the recent superhero films, this trumps them all.
The Chronicles of Riddick (2004)
Much better than the 2 latest Star Wars films.
I wasn't in any rush to see this one. I wasn't Pitch Blacks biggest fan. It didn't really work as a Sci-Fi or a Suspense/Thriller for me, and there was a bit too much Macho posturing from Vin for me to stomach. Not that I think he is a bad actor, he has more acting hits than misses.
So I'm sitting there, and it starts up. "You know this had a $100 million budget don't you?" my friend whispers. "ooohhhHHH" There was me expecting Pitch Black + $15 million, I didn't realize they actually went to town with this one.
And you can see where the money went. This truly is good attempt at a Sci-Fi Epic. From the trailer I expected the generic 'Copy/Paste CGI monster horde' to be attacking a Planet this time, instead of a small group of crash survivors. (Yawn!) That was my mistake, the trailer does not show you what this film is about. In fact we get a proper Alien invading foe, in the vein of The Borg, that make the Borg look like a rather Exoteric and welcoming place for your fragile human body to end up with!
From the Dune-esque sets and costume design, to the surprisingly good acting, and interesting Sci-Fi situations which show no quarter to the lowest common audience members, this makes for a compelling and interesting Sci-Fi Epic. Don't get me wrong though, this isn't some 'Quirky' or 'Arty' Sci-Fi flop that will emerge as a Cult Classic some day. It's much more fun than that :P
You see one thing this film has, that for example, Dune lacks, is Pace. It moves at a relentless speed going from one situation and story arc to another, inter-cut with some big scale CGI shots. And overall it flows perfectly, right up to the finale, where it ends in a very satisfying way. A fairly simple story well told.
Combat scenes are probably this films weakest link. They are cut MUCH too fast and stylised to the extent that you can't possibly follow the flow of the action. I wish more directors/editors would see Equilibrium and Fist of Legend, to see how bone-crunching kinetic action scenes should be put together. I am sick of this shaky-cam MTV fast cuts trend. However, action aside, this film has adventure, lots of different locations and scenarios, and again, solid acting and story. The acting particularly was strangely good at points.
If you like Sci-Fi, I would say this is a safe bet, there is nothing too brainless in it, you won't find yourself ripping it to shreds at every moment, it holds up fairly well the whole way through. Don't get me wrong, it's nothing groundbreaking, but it's not the brainless turd that the critics have been making out, not by a long shot. This is a much better film than the current critical darling 'Hero' for me. But look at the 66% freshness gap on rottentomatoes. *sigh* Looks like the lack of acclaim for Riddick will continue to steer studios away from risky big budget Sci-Fi, but we can rest assured that we will get more Drippy Dull films about superhero warriors and their emotional problems.
The Transporter (2002)
2002's Kiss of Dragon (good!)
1)Obscure Director check 2)Luc Besson Involved check 3)European film check
A million miles away from being a -great- film, but a million times better than xXx. Hilarious that people are bashing this and complimenting xXx in the same sentence. One of the best pure action films of that year (Equilibrium wasn't pure action), reminded me of the likes of True Lies, or the many 80's Arnie films.
Not as good as Kiss of Dragon, but in the same style.
Unwatchable, Worst Ever film.
I don't get headaches, yet 10 Minutes in my head was busting and my stomach turning, it was almost like my body was trying to tell me "don't watch this film, it will damage your mind and body"
Everything about it was terrible, possibly the first big budget film that I have seen that beats the rubbishness of Deep Blue Sea.