Reviews written by registered user
StuOz

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350 reviews in total 
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Good Old-Fashioned Fun, 24 July 2014

Josh Hutcherson and Michael Caine on an oddball island of giant insects and creatures.

I was not too big on Journey To The Centre Of The Earth (2008) so this film came as a nice surprise! The casting is a lot better this time around.

Journey 2 is an old-fashioned sci-fi movie that you can screen to kids and over-grown kids like myself.

These days most Hollywood epics like this are filled with four letter words, smart-ass characters, guns, blood, and a general cynical outlook on the world. Journey 2 is not like that.

Granted, Journey 2 is loaded with the usual CGI stuff we get these days, but 40something viewers like myself might be reminded of more harmless sci-fi days...days of 1960s Lost In Space for example.

Don't forget to hang around for the closing credits and the closing credit music is rather good.

Red Dawn (2012)
A Wonderful Movie, 24 July 2014

North Korea invades a US town.

A wonderful Pop Corn movie that was actually filmed in 2009, but held back for a couple of years. It reminds me of an Aussie film titled - Tomorrow When The War Began (2010) - where Australians were invaded by Asians.

Both "Tomorrow" and "Red Dawn" are just fine with me.

Red Dawn has several problems, for example the brothers don't look at all alike, and one does not look anything like a football player, but the trick is to just forget all that and go along with it.

I am a sucker for these films where a group of people are all alone and left to deal with a major disaster all by themselves. I think that is the reason I can forgive the errors in Red Dawn.

Skyline (2010)
A Change From ID4, 24 July 2014

Aliens attack LA and people in a LA condo building.

I am not normally the one to like these full-on CG movies, but for whatever reason: I love Skyline.

I have an issue with a short scene that stole directly from War Of The Worlds (2005), I thought the musical score could of been better, but all things considered...for a modern sci-fi flick...this is rather good and full of suspense!

Normal everyday people placed in a disaster situation, a change from the full-on military feel of ID4 (1996).

I also like the un-expected ending. We need a Skyline 2 and we need it now...with the same cast please.

Snakes (And An Aussie) On A Plane, 24 July 2014

A passenger plane is swarming with killer snakes!

I spent my childhood watching disaster movies Airport, Airport 75, Airport 77, Airport 79...so I guess Snakes On A Plane is Airport 2006 to me!

The title of the film is a bit too obvious and silly, some snake scenes in the film are a bit uncomfortable to look at, but all things considered...I like it.

The Aussie lad who plays Sean - Nathan Phillips - it not totally liked by all who have seen this film. The female viewers like his looks but some male viewers are not too impressed with his acting range. I will pass on giving my view of Nathan, but I will say he is doing well in Hollywood to this day...look at his IMDb page and see for yourself!

Starring Charlton Heston and Composer Jerry Goldsmith, 24 July 2014

Some US spacemen land on a planet of talking apes.

The first of four movies where Chuck plays the end-of-the-world-man, the others were: Beneath The Planet Of The Apes, The Omega Man and Soylant Green. All four films are outstanding.

The first of five Planet Of The Ape movies. This is without question the best of the five. Four of the five films contain great opening title scores, the exception being Conquest Of The Planet Of The Apes which had a lesser opening theme tune.

The wonderful and loud Jerry Goldsmith score in - Planet Of The Apes (1968)- was later STOLEN by composer - Richard LaSalle - and re-used in several 1969/1970s TV shows (Land Of The Giants, The New Adventures Of Wonder Woman, Buck Rogers In The 25th Century, The Swiss Family Robinson, several Irwin Allen TV movies, etc).

Monsters (2010)
Not Bad For A Recent Sci-Fi Film, 23 July 2014

A guy and girl encounter aliens in Mexico.

This is the film I have been waiting for. The sci-fi/monster elements of the story are not totally show cased, instead it is the young guy and girl we centre our attention on, but the sci-fi elements take centre stage later on!

This movie feels so human...it remained locked in my memory months after I saw it...that does not happen to many modern sci-fi films.

The British director commented on the DVD that he was a fan of the 1970s flick Close Encounters Of the Kind...you can tell...the cross overs to that old film in Monsters become clear if you look hard enough.

However, Close Encouters had a brilliant John Williams score, Monsters has no score like that, but all things considered...Monsters is not bad for a recent sci-fi movie.

Star Wars (1977)
A Knockout, 23 July 2014

A film that needs no introduction, a film I have re-watched an estimated 300 times in my lifetime, a film with a wonderful score by John Williams, also Darth Vader is great, the whole cast is fine however I never warmed to the two robots like everybody else did (which partly explains why I like Star Trek more), but still a knockout block buster!

The five films that came after were all fine, and the great John Williams scores kept coming, but the others will never compare to A New Hope.

Trivia: the origins of Darth Vader date back to a 1949 Columbia movie serial - Batman and Robin - which also had a deep voiced guy in black (The Wizard) making trouble. One "chapter" of this serial is even titled: "The Wizard Strikes Back" (sounds like The Empire Strikes Back).

1960s Meets 1989, 23 July 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Spock finds he has a brother (Sybok) with special powers.

William Shatner (Kirk), Leonard Nimoy (Spock), Laurence Luckinbill (Sybok), the Jerry Goldsmith score, the humour, the drama, the storyline about past events impacting on you in later years....what a wonderful movie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The lesser special effects are actually rather pleasing to me as Star Trek started with lesser special effects in the old TV series...so it fits well here.

There is another old meets new thing about his film: the location filming on that rocky planet at the end is actually the exact same location used for TV's Lost In Space (1965-68) when the Robinsons/Dr Smith were also on a rocky alien planet in the first few B&W episodes.

1986, 23 July 2014

Admiral Kirk and gang go back to earth in 1986.

After all the death and destruction of the last two films it was about time we got something a bit lighter. Kirk provides all the laughs, Spock is funny but sometimes his jokes miss the mark.

Star Trek DS9/Star Trek Voyager would go on to have two-part episodes where they go back to earth, more or less around the same 1980s time as this. They did it well but not as well.

They never had the Leonard Rosenman score, but more to the point, they never had William Shatner! I have made an estimated 50 viewings of this film in my lifetime!

One Of The Best Films Of The 1980s, 23 July 2014

Old enemy Kahn wants revenge on Admiral Kirk.

One of the best films of the 1980s and perhaps the most re-watched film of the 1980s. I have made an estimated 200 viewings of this over the years! William Shatner as Kirk is outstanding, and he looks a lot more happy and comfortable than he did in Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979). Leonard Nimoy as Spock is just as pleasing.

Ricardo Montalban seems to of improved with age as he makes a much better performer in this than he did in the original TV episode - Space Seed - all those years ago.

And just as important as these three stars is the musical score by James Horner. Music was a vital element to the original series and the 1979 film...so it is nice to see the tradition is maintained.

However, this tradition would take a bit of a nose dive in Star Trek 111: The Search For Spock (1984) as that film has a less pleasing score.

Star Trek 11 is close to perfect but the simple fact that it is another "revenge movie" more than a sci-fi movie puts is down the ladder just a tiny bit. But I will always love it and re-watch it.


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