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Independence Day (1996)
One Of Emmerich's Best
Roland Emmerich is a somewhat underrated director. Yes, I know he has had a few flops like 10,000 B.C and Godzilla, and even 2012 to some people, but I think Independence Day is one of his best movies. I'm saying that because it is so good all around. For example, the aliens. It's great how the alien ships are so incredibly huge (15+ miles in diameter). In some alien movies the aliens are in tiny ships and they go so fast that you aren't able to follow them. But Emmerich's version of the aliens is huge and slow, so that isn't a problem here. Anyway, the main aspects, as always. First off, the acting. Not the best. Sure, there were people like Will Smith, Jeff Goldblum, and Bill Pullman, and they were pretty good, but some of the people like Miguel and quite a few other small characters it seemed like they had no acting experience whatsoever. None. Zip. But the main characters like Smith, Goldblum, and Pullman made up for it. Mostly. Now the special effects. For a 90's action flick, they were really good. To today's standards, they would not be good at all. But they are amazing for 90's standards. In the 15+ miles across ships, there are so many little lights and openings and such, and that most likely means rooms. So that would mean there are probably 10,000+ rooms, not even counting how many floors there would be. Detail like that is not always something you come by in movies these days. Speaking of the aliens, this movie had some really awesome practical effects for the aliens. That means someone put more than one day of effort into making this, which is always good. The special effects people did a wonderful job in this movie.
And now, the writing. I can't say it was the best ever, and it was kind of cheesy, but I am willing to let that slide. Some of the lines were just not needed at all, and if you got rid of all of them, the movie would be about 5 minutes shorter. Things like "We need to pack up" isn't needed. It's kind of obvious when there's an alien invasion that could wipe out the entire world, it's kind of obvious. And other times, there were supposed to be awesome punchlines, but they come out flat and bland because the actors couldn't execute them. But really, that's the only thing I really don't like about this movie. Fourth, the characters. I didn't think this was a good idea, but I didn't care that much because it all ends up making sense. There were four different families/groups of people. There were the people in Captain Hiller's (Will Smith) family and group of friends, and also Russell Casse's (Randy Quaid), along with President Whitmore's (Bill Pullman), and David Levinson's (Jeff Goldblum). If there were only 3-4 people in each group, I'd be OK with that. But there were at least 5-10 characters in each group, and that's a lot to bother keeping track of. It just takes away from the movie.
And for the fifth, the plot. Some of it is original, and some of it isn't at all. The part that isn't original at all is the fact that a bunch of aliens have come to destroy Earth. You see that in about 85% or higher of alien movies. So nothing new there at all. But the part that is original was how Hiller and Levinson (Smith and Goldblum) took down the alien mother ship. I won't tell you exactly how because I don't want to spoil anything, but I will say it involved a lot of awesomeness. And lastly, the cinematography. The way Emmerich decided to display the alien spacecraft coming out of the clouds and pretty much anything that involved the spaceships and the mother-ships was just awesome. There was a definite sense of danger and threat in all of those shots, which was nice as well.
Overall, I really liked Independence Day, because it is a great and enjoyable movie that I would watch again anytime. 9/10. And it sure is a lot better than 10,000 B.C and 2012. Anyway, thanks for reading and check out some of my other reviews. See ya!
Possibly The Best Sequel I Have Ever Seen
Just as it says above, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is possibly, maybe even most likely, the best sequel I have ever seen. From start to finish, I was 100% interested. It is in the top five movies I have ever seen. Anyway, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is one of the rare cases that a sequel is better than the original. Seriously! I loved this movie more than Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Don't get me wrong, Rise of the Planet of the Apes is a fantastic movie, but somehow Dawn bettered it. Possibly because Matt Reeves is a better director than Rupert Wyatt (sorry Rupert - it's only my opinion, though). Even though Wyatt is a great director, he just isn't even with Matt Reeves. Reeves directed other great movies such as Cloverfield and Let Me In. His way of purveying all of the scenes was great, just like in his other films. OK, so, the general aspects of the movie. The story, first of all. The whole story was so great at following the first film that it was almost as if they were both the same movie, just in two parts. It is very rare to see a fun and interesting story in an Action/Sci-Fi movie these days, because all of the good plots are used up already. However, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is an original story and stayed fun to watch until the end. The fact that the writers came up with a way to display the apes as a civilization, just fantastic. It made the apes easier to sympathize with. Next, the characters. As with the first movie, there were apes such as Caesar, Maurice, and Koba. The human characters were completely new, and they included the always awesome Gary Oldman as Dreyfus, the great Jason Clarke as Malcolm, and Keri Russell as Ellie. Since the last movie, the motion capture has increased dramatically in quality, which made the apes even more believable, surprisingly. Now, all of the characters were either fun or despicable. Just like in the first movie, the writers and actors worked together to create characters that you really cared about, or hated. In fact, they even did that with the apes, which is awesome. As with Rise of the Planet of the Apes, there were quite a few characters that you could just flat out hate, and that is another thing that should be in a good movie. Now, the acting. The acting in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is just as good as it is Rise of the Planet of the Apes. The acting is actually the only thing that didn't improve at all in Dawn. With stars such as Andy Serkis, Gary Oldman, and Jason Clarke, you would think the acting would improve, but it didn't. Everyone displayed their emotions and said their lines very well, still. Now the visual effects, of course. Rise of the Planet of the Apes had extremely good visual effects throughout the whole entire movie, and so did Dawn, but Dawn had better, because it was made three years after Rise, of course. The detail is so amazing! You can make out the hairs, the facial expressions, the muscles moving, even the difference in skin tone. Rise had great effects, but they were much, much, much better in Dawn. Lastly, the music. The music is catchy and fun to listen to while watching the movie. Michael Giacchino did a wonderful job making it intense and serious. I thought the music helped intensify the action sequences, which included some of the best battle scenes I have ever seen. The battles appear so realistic because the apes are so human that it is almost as if the battle was going on between different countries. The battles were also sad, because a lot of people die. The fights were so intense that I caught myself gripping the arm of my seat a couple times. That doesn't happen a lot for me, so that's saying something. SO, overall, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was an amazing movie, and I was not disappointed at all by it. It might be the best summer movie this year. See ya!
Rise of the Planet of the Apes, in my opinion, is one of the best movies of 2011. Even though it is 2014, I think I can safely say that. It is so entertaining and enjoyable that I could watch it again any time. One of the reasons I like this movie so much is because it is so well put together. Rick Jaffa (writer of Relic, Eye For An Eye, and Rise of the Planet of the Apes) made such an interesting and original plot that I didn't sense "copycat" at all. I was very interested in the story throughout. The dialogue was great and not cheesy at all, as well. Another thing I like about Rise of the Planet of the Apes is that it is so much more serious than 1968's Planet of the Apes with Charlton Heston. There is a much more serious atmosphere in this movie, in my opinion only. If you think vice-versa, fine by me. But throughout the movie I felt a deep compassion for all of the apes (not monkeys, as Franklin says). A compassion for main characters is a thing a lot of movies lack these days. I have seen a lot of movies that make you not care at all for the main characters, especially with horror movies and comedies. But thankfully, that was absent here. In fact, this is one of the very few movies that has made me really sad for the characters. That is extremely rare for me. One reason that is is because the acting is so great. James Franco, for instance. Like always, he did a fantastic job. In his movies like Spiderman and 127 Hours, he did such a great job acting as his character, and he did it again in this movie. Not only James Franco. Every other actor did a wonderful job in this movie except for some of the extras. Tom Felton, for example. He did an absolutely marvelous job being the person in almost every good movie that you absolutely hate, and despise. He also did that in the Harry Potter series. Quite well, I might add. Another thing I like about this movie is that it is so full of detail. You can make out the definition of the apes down to the last hair, even in the action scenes. The actors did a great job interacting with the CGI (meaning pretending it is there during the shoot). I could tell that in some parts they used real apes for the shoot, but I couldn't tell the difference between real and fake in some of the scenes. Yeah, it's that good. Also, the animators put variations into a lot of the apes, so you could tell who was who, which was extremely helpful because there were so many. Not only that, but they used different species in that apes such as orangutans and gorillas, which was nice. To another thing. Rupert Wyatt (director of Subterrain, The Escapist, and Rise of the Planet of the Apes, of course) did an amazing job directing this movie, I think. The camera angles throughout were interesting and fun, because a lot of them let you take in the grandeur of the apes, and the movie all together. Another thing as well. To Patrick Doyle, the composer of this movie, kudos. You did a wonderful job. You know how with some music, it is so awesome you get chills down your spine? Yeah, well Doyle did that. Well, some of it did for me. I hope you found this review helpful, and I'll review Dawn of the Planet of the Apes soon for you guys. See ya!
I was wanting to see Non-Stop in theaters for a really long time, but I never got around to seeing it. Eventually I just forgot about it, and after that I saw how it came out on DVD and remembered how much I wanted to see it. I rented it before buying it, to make sure I liked it. I sure as heck did. I was on the edge of my seat for almost the whole movie. This is only because it was so original and fun to watch. One thing that goes along with the originality is the group of text bubbles that appear when a text is sent between Liam Neeson and the killer. Instead of having to look very hard at the screen of the phone and missing some of the text message, you could easily read all of the texts at the fast pace of the movie. Jaume Collet-Serra and the writers did such a good job putting this movie together that the 106 minutes just flew by. One of the main things that makes this a good mystery is that there aren't any flaws. As I looked back several times throughout the movie, I never noticed any goofs. There probably are, but I just didn't notice them. Well, maybe one or two, now that I think about it. But it was still an awesome mystery movie, and is up there with Neeson's other mystery/action movies, such as Taken. Another thing I like about the movie is that the plot is so original. I know I already said the movie was original, but I didn't say the plot was. I have never seen a plot or main idea like the one in Non-Stop. I never knew what to expect because of that, and that also helped the rating for me. There were several other things that kept the movie interesting for me, though. For example, the acting. With stars such as Liam Neeson, Julianne Moore, and Scoot McNairy, I had no doubt that the acting was going to be awesome. I was right. The acting is amazing, and the emotions displayed and the lines of the actors came together perfectly. The dialogue was another great thing about this movie, because cheesy lines were completely non- existent. For example, instead of saying "I didn't do it," the character would say something that delved into whether or not they did it, including stuff like evidence and honesty (whether they are being honest or not, if that makes sense). That also made Non-Stop a fun movie. The music was sort of in the background, and you could not hear it that much, but it kind of went along with the rhythm of the story if you listen really closely. Another thing that made this movie awesome is the setting. Being on a plane full of innocent (most of them) passengers, small rooms and fight scenes really made Non-Stop a thrilling movie. In fact, that is another thing that made this movie original; it was on a plane. That is really all I have to say about Non- Stop. I hope you found this review helpful. Check out some of my other reviews. See ya!
First things first. This was overall a good movie. Yes there were some (maybe a lot) of mistakes, but that's okay. I liked the movie for its enjoyability, because it really is a fun movie to watch. I wouldn't say that it is the best Transformers movie to date, I am definitely not saying that, But I really like it. I thought that there were only a couple completely dull moments, and other than those, I was entertained the whole way through. The visual effects were so great and advanced so much since 2011, when Dark of the Moon came out. There were even more moving parts in the Transformers that it would be almost impossible to see all of them. One thing that helps with that though, is something that I talk about a lot in Transformers reviews. The slow motion camera effect. The slow motion has really gotten better as the series progressed. This movie contained the best slow motion of the series, and it really was awesome. Besides that, the acting in this movie was not as good as the first three movies. It was close for some of the characters, but some just couldn't act. For example, Nicola Peltz as Tessa Yeager. She just served as another Megan Fox and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. This means that she is the very pretty face that seems to recur in every Transformers movie. Except Megan and Rosie could act. Now, Nicola did have a lot of good lines, she just didn't execute them very well. Mark Wahlberg, as usual, was a great character in this movie. I did not expect him to do such a good job in this movie, because it was so different compared to his other movie genres. Meaning he doesn't do Sci-Fi movies that much, especially ones that involve giant robots. He was still really good though. He also played the fatherly role very, very well. T.J Miller did an even better job in Transformers: Age of Extinction than he did in Cloverfield, which was very surprising to me. He offered most of the comic relief that was needed, and also did it well. Stanley Tucci is often considered to be the best part of the movie. I disagree. While Tucci is a fantastic actor, I think he and Mark Wahlberg were tied. They both played very believable characters. Those are really all of the main characters. Next, the movie was extremely long. This is the longest of the series, and that's saying something. There were a few scenes that were completely pointless, and could have been done in a much shorter amount of time. 165 minutes (2 hrs 45 min) is an extremely long time to stay in a theater and keep your eyes on a screen. I liked all of the battle scenes and action, but I just wish some of them were shorter. Also, on the positive side again, I liked how this movie was on such a big scale, instead of just focusing on one state and city like the first Transformers mostly did. The Transformers are bigger, the battles are bigger, the ships are bigger, the destruction is bigger. That definitely made up for the pointless scenes in the movie. Anyway, almost nobody denies that the change of Autobots and Decepticons was not completely welcome. However, to my surprise, I didn't mind it that much. It kept the series fresh, and I liked the new Transformers when it was explained why there were there. And finally, the plot. Ehren Kruger and Lorenzo di Bonaventura and other writers always do a great job coming up with new stories and plots and characters and dialogue (which was okay save for maybe, 5-6 very cheesy lines and a few cringe worthy punch lines). The progression of this movie and its plot was fairly slow, and that is probably why the movie is so long. Overall, I liked Transformers: Age of Extinction a lot, and I thought it was a really fun movie to watch, especially in 3D. So, I recommend you go see it whenever you get the chance. Transformers 5 is coming out around 2016, and I will review that, but I will have plenty of reviews in between. Sorry I made the review so long. See ya!
Since Transformers: Age of Extinction is coming out in two weeks, I decided to re-watch all of the old Transformers movies. After watching the first movie and reviewing it, I decided to review all of the movies. I really liked this movie, which was surprising because I didn't remember liking it this much. I really enjoyed the 2 1/2 hour movie. It was very long, but I still enjoyed it. Just like the second movie, I felt like some of the scenes were dragged out way too much, which is why I gave it a 7 instead of an 8 or a 9. Just like the second movie, I was happy with the absence of a shaky camera. It made the battles much more enjoyable, and made the movie way better. Even though I gave this movie the same rating as Revenge of the Fallen, I think Revenge of the Fallen was a tiny bit better. It was more pleasant. This movie was so dark that I had a hard time believing that it was a Transformers movie. Don't get me wrong, it was still really good, but it was also very dark. The acting in this movie was once again outstanding, and Shia Labeouf did a great job adapting to his new character. He was still Sam, but his attitude completely changed, and he did a wonderful job. Rosie Huntington-Whitely did a good job filling in for Megan Fox. I thought the movie would've been a little better if Fox was still Sam's girlfriend. Whitely still did a wonderful job, though. Every single person did another wonderful job in this movie with acting. The Transformers really is a good series for acting. The series is also amazing for special effects. Everything looks so great that the battles and the robots and everything else that isn't real looks real. Transformers 1,2,3 and probably 4 are one of the best displays of visual effects I have ever seen. I like how there is always so much detail in all of the Autobots and Decepticons. Their emotions are so easily displayed that you are sympathetic for them when one of them dies (the Autobots, mainly), which really makes them more human, and all of their moving parts go together without a problem, and their transformations are once again awesome. That is another thing I like about this movie. They aren't just regular, stereotypical robots. They are original, and are very realistic. As with the second movie, the setting changed. Well, the final battle of the first film was in New York, and the final battle in Dark of the Moon was in Chicago, which are different cities, but still cities. But the scale of the battle increased at least 20 times. Maybe even more. This made the battles more grandiose, and way more fun to watch. Also, the story thankfully changed again. The introduction of so many new Decepticons was awesome. I was looking for a lot of new Transformers. Ehren Kruger and Michael Bay did such a good job creating some new Transformers that it was almost as if this was a different series. The dialogue was another great thing in this movie. The actors said their lines perfectly, and displayed their emotions perfectly once again. Steve Jablonsky (composer) did a great job once more with this installment of the series, and used Arrival to Earth again as a main theme, which is good. That's all I have to say about Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Thanks for reading. See ya.
Because Transformers 4: Age of Extinction is coming out in less than a month, I decided to re-watch some of the older Transformers movies. After re-watching the first movie, I decided to review it (feel free to check that review out). Then, I thought it would be good to review all of the Transformers movies, which is why I am reviewing this. The Transformers series really is awesome, and it is one of my Top 5 favorite series. Shia Labeouf and Megan Fox really are a good couple in the movie, and they fit together perfectly, so they were great casting choices. Every other main casting choice was great, such as Josh Duhamel as Lennox, and Peter Cullen as Optimus Prime. Everyone in the movie was great, however, and all played a believable part, and displayed their emotions and delivered their lines without a single problem or malfunction. One problem I had with the first movie was that the camera was extremely shaky during some of the battles. Sure, the recurring slow motion shots helped, but not all the time. There was not a shaky camera in this installment, and that really made me happy. The camera did a lot of cool angles, such as when they rotate around the action, or battles. Which were amazing except for one thing. Sure, the special effects were fantastic, and the battles were extremely entertaining. However, they were only entertaining when there were just 4-5 Transformers and a bunch of people at max. But there were some scenes where there were so many people and Transformers that I could not tell who was who. After you spend half of the battle figuring that out, they are really fun to watch. The special effects in the Transformers movies really are awesome, though. The Autobots and Decepticons look so great that they are even more believable than they would be if they were cheesy. The voice actors are so great in this movie, and all of the voice actors were perfect choices for the Transformers, which made them very fun to watch. The robots such as Mudflap and his twin added a lot of good humor to the film, as well. On to the music. The music was very good, and some of it was taken from the original Transformers, such as a song called Arrival to Earth, by Steve Jablonsky. Jablonsky made such good music for this movie, which is awesome because music is one of the most important parts of a movie. The setting varies greatly from the first movie, which is refreshing so it isn't like we are seeing the same battles again. The only reason I gave this movie only a 7 is because it is so long. Some of the scenes drag out way too much, and there were about five boring parts. The story also differs, which is good. The writers still used some of the objects in the first movie such as Energon and the AllSpark cube. There were new objects and new Transformers in this movie, which made it a lot better, too. That's all I have to say about Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. Thanks for reading. See ya!
Since the new Transformers movie is coming out soon, I thought I would re-watch some of the old ones. I had forgotten how awesome the first Transformers was. I hope Transformers 4: The Age of Extinction is at least AS cool as this movie. Some people rip on this movie because it is too impossible. The only thing I have to say to that is it is not supposed to be realistic. If there is a movie that has giant robots that can transform into cars and planes and trucks and back again, you should automatically know it isn't going to be realistic. But once you get past that, it truly is an awesome movie. The special effects were amazing, considering that the movie was made 7 years ago. The special effects people really did an amazing job on this movie. In fact, they paid so much attention to detail, they even made the Transformers blink, move their teeth, and even breathe, I think. However, because they were robots, it was hard to read their emotions. That doesn't bother me, though. The acting was also great. It was a good idea to have the Transformers have different styles of talking and behaving. In a way that made them seem a little bit more human, and you feel sympathetic for them when one dies or gets hurt or injured. The actual humans in the movie were very believable characters, and you feel for them as well. Everyone in the movie did a very good job, and kept the movie fun to watch. I always look for that in a movie. The story was somewhat taken from the 1984-1987 TV series, but it was still kept original in some ways. I haven't seen the series, so I can't really expound on that. Sorry. Although, the story was kept very entertaining by the writers, and there were only one or two dull moments. Michael Bay did a wonderful job directing this movie, but there was one thing I had a problem with. I don't know if it was his idea or the cinematographer's idea, but the camera was way too shaky in some of the battle scenes. There was too much going on to have a shaky camera like that, and that is the reason I give it an 8/10, because there is way too much of it. But if you are OK with shaky cameras, you will enjoy this movie 100%. Probably. Hopefully. Maybe. You might. Anyway, the dialogue was good, too. There were no bad jokes, no dull speeches, and nothing else of that sort. That's really all I have to say. I hope you found my review helpful, and feel free to check out my other reviews. See ya!
A Great Horror Icon
It really makes me sad that a lot of people don't appreciate silent movies these days. People can't really use their imagination anymore, which is a good thing to use when you are watching a silent movie. However, I try my best, and I really enjoyed this movie. It has a really creepy atmosphere, and even though it's more than 90 years old, it still had some creepy camera angles and shots. I can't imagine how creepy this movie was back in 1922, because it still is a little creepy now. Not scary, just creepy. I really liked the music that was playing throughout, because it really enhanced the movie. The whole time the music was playing I was enjoying the movie. Which means I enjoyed the whole movie. Max Schreck did such a good job at being creepy that I completely admire him, even though he's dead. Everyone else in this film did a wonderful job. Even the extras played a believable part. Also, I think the makeup artists did an absolutely wonderful job on the whole entire cast. Count Orlok (Max Schreck) looked really creepy and real. I even thought that was a real person's face until I took a good look at it, and realized that would be impossible for someone to have teeth like that. Also, the costumes are made so well that I believed they were real clothes and not just costumes. Now on to the general aspects of the movie. I really enjoyed the wonderful acting, well, wonderful for the time, and the effort put into playing a believable character really made me happy. The special effects were very rare, but when they did appear, they were very good. I have no idea how they could make things disappear and reappear with the so limited technology of the time. I could tell they used stop-action for some of the door opening effects, or maybe even string, but it was done in such a way that it was enjoyable. The story line was loosely based on Bram Stoker's Dracula, so it was really entertaining, and somewhat original because the makers shifted some stuff around. In fact, the only reason I don't give this a 10 is because it was kind of hard to follow. Now, that is probably because I took a break while I was watching it, but it might not be, so don't dislike this review because I said it was kind of hard to follow. OK. I was trying to figure out why some things happened and why some things did not, but I still understood the movie 100% by the time it was over. Don't judge! I still really loved this movie though, and it really irks me that some people don't take the time for silent movies. That's really all I have to say. So thanks for reading. See ya!
Revived My Interest In Godzilla
This movie is easily the best Godzilla movie I have ever seen. Gareth Edwards did such a good job at remaking the classic I had a hard time getting up when I had to go to the bathroom. :) I knew as soon as I saw the opening credits that this was going to be an absolutely awesome movie. After seeing the inferior 1998 version that for some reason I watched several times, I was anxiously waiting for a good remake. This 123 minute slice of awesome completely made up for my long time of waiting. There were two things I was looking for that this movie did not have, however. The original theme from 1954 and the original roar. I was not dissatisfied with the new roar, though, and it was so cool it gave me goosebumps the first time I heard it. I did still miss the original music, but I do understand copyright laws. People keep ripping on this awesome movie because it didn't offer anything new. I think it offered some new material, like the look of Godzilla and his roar and the monsters he fights. The makers of the movie changed a lot of the small things about the appearance of Godzilla, but kept the main things. For example, they kept his menacing behavior, his sky scraping height, and his incomprehensible strength. I think Edwards did an awesome job making this movie. He made sure not to completely copy off of Japan's Gojira, but made sure to keep it similar enough so the die-hard Godzilla fans were not unhappy. One of the reasons the 1998 Godzilla was not very successful was because Roland Emmerich completely changed the appearance of the so-called Godzilla to where it just looked like a giant T-Rex. Sort of. But Edwards kept the main shape of Godzilla so that was good. I guess I should actually review the general aspects of the movie. The actors were mostly A+ stars talking B+ dialogue, but it didn't bother me that much at all, because I'm not a huge stickler. Although there were some really good quotes throughout, and that kind of made up for it. The special effects were mind blowing. I'm surprised the budget was still only $160,000,000 with how good the special effects were. With three monsters, I would have expected it to be over $200,000,000 easily. The story was moderately original, and offered some new ideas and some already used ideas. However, if you just want to see a movie on a Saturday night, this will not bother you at all, and you should enjoy the movie as it is. Edwards' directing style is great, and makes you feel like you might be in a nearby helicopter or plane watching all of the action unfold, which is a lot better than just a completely still camera sitting on a bridge. He (Edwards) also did a good job putting in some minor characters to emphasize the importance of people during some of the fight scenes, like a bus driver. Overall, this is a solid installment in the Godzilla franchise, and will be much more successful, remembered, and liked than the 1998 Godzilla ever was. Thanks for reading. See ya!