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For better or for worse: You get exactly what you would expect.
Disclaimer: I have not seen the original Sailor Moon and therefore my review is based solely on the Sailor Moon Crystal anime itself as a standalone and not on how it compares to the original version.
I knew that this was a hardcore Shojo anime (aimed at teenage girls or young adult women) and therefore expected it to be very girly, I will not judge the series for that in a negative way since it does fulfill its purpose in that regard. But I also heard that there was more to the series than just the shimmery, somewhat cheesy surface and so I watched through the whole first season but to be honest, I was quite disappointed.
The action and battles were well animated and had good ideas to them but were unfortunately also super repetitive. It's hard to say anything without spoilers but yeah, if you have seen the first about 10 episodes you will understand what I mean. It was rather lame how every fight is so foreseeable and took away a lot of the suspense.
And yes, there are some themes of a more "mature" nature next to the usual love and friendship Shojo themes but they are too far and few in-between and obviously of lesser importance. As I mentioned that is okay for such a dedicated Shojo but still, it made me feel like the whole story just lacked depth and was too focused on just a very few "clichés" of this genre while there can be so much more to it.
I feel like there was potential to go beyond its boundaries but it was neglected in an attempt to not interest a broader audience but to really, really, REALLY satisfy a selected few, which is a shame to be honest.
The overall story was "typical" but okay, nothing super special but generally enjoyable, just a good vs evil story like you would expect.
The only thing that really annoyed me was unfortunately the main character, I get that she is supposed to symbolize that "anyone can be a hero, no matter your flaws and perks" but does she really need to cry all. the. freaking. time? Gosh, you can portray vulnerability or being overly sensitive in a way that grinds less harshly into the viewer's sanity than constantly and persistently whining and crying in that screeching voice over and over again. It got really old really fast.
As an overall review you can put a sticker on the Sailor Moon Crystal box that says: You get exactly what you expect, nothing more, nothing less. It's a somewhat superficial girl-power anime with lots and lots of romance and "feelings", embedded in a less important action background.
From my point of view it does not have the "suprprising depth" I read and heard about in fan reviews which was disappointing to me but if that is not what you are looking for but want a super girly anime instead then this is surely for you.
Anime Score as a whole for viewers in the right audience: 6/10, there are other, better Shojo action anime out there and it is nothing special but if you are not looking to get your mind blown away and just want to know what the hype is about/maybe got some nostalgic feeling for the series or just need a quick anime fix sure, go for it. It's not amazing but definitely not bad either.
Personal Score as a viewer who this genre is not aimed at: 4/10, if you are not into Shojo then this will not change your mind or surprise you in any way. I personally did not like it a lot and would not watch a second season.
People Magazine Investigates (2016)
A good series if you are into these kind of shows.
I'll keep it short: If you are a fan of the True Crime genre you will probably like this series. It follows "the usual patterns" and executes the documentation and narrative quite well. It is nothing "special" but definitely one of the better shows of this kind I have seen in a while.
Unfortunately a few of the cases have already been documented/discussed in a lot of detail on other shows, but there are quite a few which I have never heard of before.
If you are done watching "The Jinx", "Making a Murderer" and I guess "The Killing Season" and liked those shows you will find some entertainment in this one, too.
Overall i would recommend it, 7/10.
The Magnificent Seven (2016)
Far below expectations.
I was very disappointed with this movie. The trailer looked great and I am a fan of the action/western genre in general but this... the second half of the movie was just endless, brainless shooting to a point where it just tried to obviously fill up screen time the film would not have needed at all.
The background story sounded interesting at first but was not thought through enough to actually make you feel anything for the characters that gather as the "Magnificent Seven". The protagonists are shallow as can be, just seven people with boring, stereotypical background stories that shoot and fight soooooo much better than the bad guys.
If you are in the mood for a superficial shootout and just want to see a lot of smoking guns and blood then yes, this can be entertaining. But if you expect a good story, interesting characters or basically anything surprising or new then no, I would not recommend watching this. There are far, far better westerns out there.
5/10, not awful but don't bring your hopes up too much.
The Exorcist (2016)
You need to stick through the rough, slow start but will be rewarded with a great show if you do.
I really like "The Exorcist" by now but have to be honest: The first episode was great, the following two episodes were VERY mediocre if not even boring and felt very, very lengthy. I thought about quitting it after episode three and am glad I didn't in retrospect.
Now that more episodes are out the story has finally become much more suspenseful and I started actually caring about the characters, the horror/mystery elements have gained much more momentum and it is exciting to see the progression of the possession and how they try to deal with it.
Overall I rate the series 7/10, if it wasn't for that very rough patch in the beginning I would give it a solid 8/10 and recommend watching it for fans of the genre.
Into the Woods (2014)
A good adaptation of a fantastic musical, the rating does not do it justice.
I enjoyed the movie a lot, it has been many years since i saw "Into the Woods" as a live musical and the film was a nice reminder of why i loved the story so much back then and still do.
In short: It's DEFINITELY not for everyone and i think that is reflected in the very harsh, partially unjust ratings and comments. The adaptation is very close to the original and executed beautifully though and fans will have a good time watching it.
If you enjoyed the original musical or "dramatic comedy musicals" in general then i recommend watching it.
If you expect some Tim Burton-esque "Alice through the Looking Glass" film you will be disappointed because that is NOT what this is despite what the trailer might suggest.
8/10 but i understand that it is only enjoyable for a very specific audience (and definitely not for kids or most teens!).
It had potential, but...
The anime's story is interesting and unique, the animation is great as well.
Unfortunately the protagonists remain somewhat flat and uninspiring, the beginning of the show feels very "rushed" and confusing. The audience is just tossed into this world without pretty much any explanation until later episodes about what "Hell's Gate" actually is or even looks like which was kinda annoying to be honest.
Instead of providing the really interesting elements or focusing more on the supernatural powers and happenings the creators decided to add quite a few boring filler episodes with a totally irrelevant side story and boring characters towards the later midsection of the show as well. Those felt totally unnecessary and almost made me stop watching the show since it felt like such a waste of time at that point.
Overall I didn't hate the show and watched it all the way through but quite frankly: I would probably not recommend it to anyone over other great shows that are in the same genre but just more superior in the way of story telling and action.
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For (2014)
This movie sucked. A lot.
Gosh, this film was SO stupid...
I know this is a fantasy world with fantasy rules but seriously, how many goddamn bullets to the head, ripped out eyes or other deadly flesh wounds does it take for ANYONE to die in Sin City? It became ridiculous at some point how apparently everyone is a Wolverine in disguise. It made all the action and shootout scenes laughable and lame to watch.
Not even the sometimes really impressive CGI or Eva Green could rescue this hot mess with its nonsense voice overs and predictable story line. The action scenes were lame, the characters were boring and it did in no way get even close to the cool, fresh vibe the first Sin City delivered a couple of years ago.
2/10, one of the most disappointing movies in a long time.
Hard Candy (2005)
An interesting story with a lot of suspense that somehow gets lost towards the second half of the movie.
I quite enjoyed this film, Ellen Page's acting as the sweet yet obviously highly disturbed girl who is "on the hunt" was brilliant and that alone makes this movie worth watching.
The plot was intriguing and offered a lot of suspense, it's a pity that it did not show more of the back story/real motives that drive the female protagonist though. The character Hayley remains a mystery which did not come across as "interesting", it rather felt as if the movie was lacking a certain depth and this is the main reason why I would not rate it more than "good" overall.
The violence takes an in my opinion unnecessarily big part of the play time and makes the film come across as a bit too shallow towards the end. It also seemed highly unrealistic how after all that was done to him the victim still seems to be "actually pretty fine" physically, this was weird to watch at some points.
In conclusion the movie is worth the watch but missed the chance to be amazing by including more in-depth psychological portrayal of its main characters instead of the excessive violence scenes.
7/10, i was tending towards 6/10 but it barely made the cut.
Bates Motel (2013)
A great, gripping story and a literally perfect cast of talented, ambitious actors.
This is a fantastic series! It is very suspenseful and getting more and more intense with no "filler episodes" whatsoever.
The actors are PERFECT in every single role and you can see that anyyone involved with this story is really trying their hardest to give a great entertainment experience to the audience, and yes, they succeed all the way through.
I also like the balance between "mere psychological suspense" and brutal, obvious gore that is struck perfectly to not get boring/repetitive one way or the other like in some other series i have been watching lately.
9/10, i would recommend this series wholeheartedly to anyone.
The Village (2004)
This is actually a Shyamalan movie and doesn't deserve 1/10 stars? What a surprise!
I saw this on TV a couple weeks ago and since my expectations towards it were really, really slim due to it being a Shyamalan flick (let's be real: the last 5 movies of this guy were unbelievably terrible from start to end), I was actually kinda surprised that I didn't have to fight the urge to hammer the "off" remote button after a few minutes.
Don't get me wrong, it's not an "amazing" story that will stick with you/leave a lasting impression just as some of the early works of this director/writer did, it's an okay horror movie with an interesting setting and trying actors.
The movie unfortunately gets kinda "meh" towards the ending, but one might surely watch it anyways if you are a fan of the horror genre.