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Grand Theft Auto 3 (2001) (VG)
Grand Theft Auto 3 - The Game That Never Get's Old!, 8 August 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Grand Theft Auto 3, created by Rockstar games, is considered one of the most ground breaking video games of all time. Why? Probably because it allowed you free range to do almost anything you liked. This included such acts as killing prostitutes, pedestrian hit and run, randomly throwing grenades at passing cars, you name it.

This of course caused major controversy with some parents groups, but we really don't care about that here. I was lucky enough that my parents didn't give a care what video games I played as long as I stayed out of their hair.

Story GTA 3 is set in Liberty City – the filthiest city in America! You are Claude Speed, young bank robber who rises through the ranks of the Italian Mafia. Eventually you kill their leader and take on missions given to you by Yakuza crime lords and crooked district attorneys. Your two main enemies are the Chinese Triads, and especially the Colombians. to be honest, I didn't really following the story all that much as I was too busy playing pedestrian hit and run during missions. ツ (star!)

Missions I found the missions in GTA 3 to be a lot harder than those in GTA 4 yet easier than GTA: San Andreas. The hardest mission was "S.A.M" in which Claude must shoot down a Dodo and collect packages of S.P.A.N.K. The trouble I had with this mission was that I could never get to the air port in time! If you try to drive to Francis International Airport in south Shoreside Vale, traffic will normally catch you before the plane lands. So, the best way to get to the air port is to cross the ocean west of Staunton Island.

Funess Level GTA 3 is one of those games you never get tired of playing, or at least you never get tired until the latest GTA game comes out with all the new up grades. Even after you've fully beaten the game there is still so many fun things to do. Home made games include: seeing how long you can last with five wanted stars, turning on pedestrian riot mode therefore starting an apocalypse, and standing on top of vehicles then shooting at them and seeing how far and fast they go before you're catapulted off!

Graphics For a 2001 video game, GTA 3's graphics are not that bad. The characters' heads are a little blocky, and Claude runs kind of weird but other than that, the graphics are pretty good. Actually, when I first played GTA 3 back in 2001, I thought it looked pretty awesome primarily (and this is kind of weird) because of the puddles seen on Staunton Island near Kenji Kasen's casino. Those puddles looked pretty darn realistic for its time.

Music Now this was my favorite part of the game. GTA 3 radio stations and my opinions of them include:

Double Clef FM – I never really listened to this station but I always respected it.

Flashback 95.6 – This station featured songs from the 1983 film Scarface. My favorite songs included Debbie Harry - "Rush Rush", Elizabeth Daily - "Shake It Up", Paul Engemann - "Push It to the Limit", Amy Holland - "She's on Fire", and Elizabeth Daily - "I'm Hot Tonight". Yes that's all the songs.

Game Radio FM I never really listened to this station but I always respected it.

Head Radio – Head Radio was the pop/rock station of GTA 3. It featured catchy, ironic tunes with my favorite being Whatever's "Good Thing", though I have the entire twenty minute station on my iPod.

K-Jah – K-jah featured easy dub reggae listenings all by the "Scientist". The best song on the station is "Your Teeth in My Neck". Try not getting high after listening to that track.

Lips 106 – Lips 106 is another pop station featuring the most ironic songs ever written. Featured is one past GTA 2 theme song called "Grand Theft Auto (Joyride)" by Da Shootaz. Yes, I also have this entire soundtrack on my iPod.

MSX FM – MSX FM is the drum and bass station of Liberty City. This station is best listened to whilst driving one of the fastest cars in the game and bobbing your head back in fourth until you go into cardiac arrest.

Rise FM - I never really listened to this station but I always respected it.

Chatterbox FM – Chatterbox FM was hosted by annoyed DJ and host Lazlow Jones. It featured the craziest callers ever created calling in to the station about pure nonsense, and two guests – one, a supposed gay, karate, vegan master, and the other a pimp.

Everyone knows GTA 3 really was and still is one of the best games ever made and was followed up by even more best games ever made including GTA: Vice City and GTA: San Andreas. Even though GTA 3 is 10 years old this year, there's no reason to sell this one on eBay. Keep it and play it over and over again. Trust me, it may get graphically and mechanically old, but it will always be enjoyable.

Gattaca (1997)
1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Living in a Society Where Discrimination Begins Before Birth, 8 August 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

WARNING This review may contain spoilers!

Imagine living in a society where discrimination begins before birth, where your genetics determine whether you live a life of prosperity or a life in the gutter. In 1997, Andrew Niccol explored the future of our society where genetic perfection rules all. In Gattaca, Vincent Freeman, a genetic degenerate, assumes the identity of Jerome Eugene Morrow, the picture of genetic perfection, to gain access into the Gattaca space program. Vincent's dream was to travel to Jupiter before his heart was scheduled to stop; Jerome, who is paralyzed from the waist down, allows the use of his perfect identity to help Vincent achieve his dream.

Acting/Characters Ethan Hawke gives a brilliant performance as Vincent Freeman. Hawke shows the pain of a person cursed with the "genetic defect" of being what we consider a normal born child. His dedication to the role is seen through Vincent's dedication and drive at stopping at nothing to travel to Jupiter. Vincent is cunning in his disguise as Jerome Morrow making sure to clean and dispose of every hair and nail that may reveal his true identity thus derailing his lifelong dream.

Jude Law as the real Jerome Morrow is an amusing character allowing Vincent to use his identity to pose as genetic perfect. Though he is often drunk and babbling about how much of an amazing person he use to be, deep inside Jude allows us to see Jerome's serious and vulnerable side.

Irene Cassini is the lover of Vincent and is played by Ethan Hawke's past real life love Uma Thurman. Irene is sort of a cold character, but this is made so by her environment which disallows her (not as genetically perfect as she may seem) to be and love who she wants. She falls in love with Vincent posing as Jerome and is shocked yet memorized when she finds his true identity.

Script Unlike most other first time screen writers, Andrew Niccol's Gattaca script was beyond brilliance. He takes us in deep at the very beginning of the film during Vincent's birth. Vincent's father refuses to name his first born son after himself as his name would be tainted by Vincent's genetic deformities.

We are taken along with Vincent through his childhood where his is out-shined physically by his younger brother and shunned by his parents. The emotion digs even deeper as Vincent is denied job after job because of his poor genetics. He ends up as a janitor cleaning the ins and outs of the Gattaca building. It seems he will never travel into space even though the very building he cleans specializes in space travel.

Niccol finally gives us hope as Vincent decides to take on Jerome Morrow's identity which is considered illegal in their society. Succeeding at literally becoming Jerome Morrow, Vincent is finally given the chance to travel through space as he is accepted into the Gattaca space program. But before he gets his chance, Niccol hits us again with a major stumbling block for Vincent – murder at Gattaca.

Niccol continues to engage us as Vincent and Irene fall in love, and Vincent tries to conceal his true identity as detectives (including his own younger brother) rummage through Gattaca trying to find the murderer. Niccol gives us intense romance and thrill in this science fiction drama that once you've seen, it will never be forgotten.

It's quite obvious I am in love with this film. It came out when I was only seven years old. I remember hearing Michael Nyman's brilliant score and remembering it up until I was about fifteen years old when I finally saw Gattaca in full. It's a shame Nyman didn't win best score back in 1998. If you want a look into the future of our society ruled by genetics, check out Gattaca. You won't be disappointed.