Reviews written by registered user
|20 reviews in total|
I've been totally addicted to this show ever since I watched the pilot
a few weeks ago. James Caviezel is dark, brooding, yet calm and
methodical when he's in action. Michael Emerson from Lost is also
effective as the guy who invented the machine that predicts that
violent crimes are about to happen.
It's an intriguing show. Closest plot that reminds me about this is Minority Report, but with a made-for-TV treatment that's still pretty damn good. Guest stars are also familiar to those who've watched Law & Order, CSI, etc., and are complementary. The cop trying to chase after him's a bit of a stretch but I guess they need something for continuity.
Worth recommending to those who want to hitch on a new action, mystery show that's very well-written and fantastic-paced.
Go watch it and you won't regret it.
I've been a fan of JJ Abrams for a while now, since his Mission
Impossible 3 revitalized the franchise from the slow-mo,dove-flying
movie made by John Woo in MI:2, and his 2009 rendition of Star Trek.
This was his own story, not a sequel nor a reboot... and I have to say that this was a most excellent story with fantastic acting by the top two actors, Joel Courtney (Joe) and Elle Fanning (Alice), both of whom are children; they're well supported by Joe's best friend, Charles (Riley Griffiths) and Cary, Martin and Preston. Adult acting, though supporting, was well done by Kyle Chandler (who playes Joe's Dad) and Ron Eldard (who plays Alice's Dad). Though the critics have said that JJ Abrams takes several pages out of Executive Producer Steven Spielberg's past movies on sci-fi and centering on children, I don't really care. This is a great movie for these times, and he balances things out pretty well. The story has a good solid base, the acting superb, the emotions (be it sorrow, glee, excitement, fear) were truly felt, there were appropriate sprinkles of humor, and the action/special effects scenes were top notch.
My only qualm or reservation about this movie is that it left me wondering how the ending could have been better; I mean there are quick cuts of a creature of some kind (er, ET?), but I wish there was more closure there; there were questions unanswered (why was it collecting, what was its objective, etc.-- sorry I don't want to spoil it so I cannot elaborate more). Perhaps there was too much set up that I was anticipating more when the creature was revealed. Maybe another few more minutes to give a proper ending...
Anyway, the ending doesn't take away much from the movie (except my rating it a 9 instead of a 10).
As someone who's followed Green Lantern a little bit of a decent amount
(not big but fairly decent, for DC character), I liked some things
about the movie; but I definitely say that it could have been made
better, both for casual fans, non-GL fans or hard core ones.
Good points... 1. It stuck fairly consistently with the mythos of the origin and Planet OA; 2. Ryan Reynolds did decently as Hal Jordan (though he fits more with the Kyle Rayner/Guy Gardner type than Jordan) -- but I wish he was more serious; though non-GL fans couldn't care less about this; 3. Blake Lively was eye candy; super hot, but not much else; 4. Green Lanterns Tomar Re, Kilowog and Abin Sur were damn good but didn't have enough screen time to be significant; 5. Mark Strong's Sinestro was excellent! 6. Hector Hammond was well portrayed by Peter Saarsgard (though it lacked a proper finish) 7. Good supporting cast from Tim Robbins (Sen. Hammond) to Angela Bassett (Amanda Waller); 8. Green Lantern's costume was wicked; 9. Visual/CGI effects were pretty good
Bad Points... > It tried to fit too much into one movie, moving back and forth from Earth and outer space/OA, thus there was no proper flow... (like when there was a build up of momentum, things go slow or boring; or from serious to funny without proper pacing); too many stories were crammed into one movie > Humor was misplaced at times (good peg is Thor which had it in the flow rather than contrived/forced) > Parallax looked comical; scary at times but only a couple of times > Like Iron Man 2, I wish the fight scenes were so much more; they spent too much on the set-up that the fights were short and could have been so much more and elaborate. > Some scenes and even some characters were not necessary (Hal's best friend, even some scenes with Blake's Carol Ferris were not needed); they should have added more action instead
Summary, visual effects, actors, GL base story good. But the way the writers and director put things together were a mixture of various plots and subplots crazy glued into one movie for pure entertainment. Kids will enjoy it, but adults likely will not. This is a summer of superheroes, with 3 down and one more to go (well, technically 5 with Transformers if you're thinking comic book stories), so it's quite impossible not to compare them to each other.
The director is known to direct good flicks like Goldeneye and Casino Royale (two good movies), but I wish he did more; studied more, had split up more stories to be more single- minded and not work on a cluttered material.
Pluses: Visually well done background, some good voice acting. It can
put you to sleep. (Oh wait, that last one is not good for the movie,
but good for you if you've had a long day like I did and watch this
movie at 10pm)
Minuses: a lot; dragging story, advertised as fun but it's really not. I don't want to waste more time typing up a review.
Bottom line: Don't see it. Even on DVD, folks.
But if you expect that it's got adult themes delivered in animation, then maybe you'll feel satisfied after watching this. And then maybe I'll rate it a 4 out of 10.
Having raised my expectations after a friend showed me the two trailers
of Sucker Punch in December, I went and caught it on the first day. I
was not disappointed. You know there are movies that pretend to be
something they're not (e.g. Rango seemingly a fun movie and for kids,
but it's not; or the poster of The Adjustment Bureau that made it seem
like an action flick, but it's not). When I saw the trailer, I saw
girls in hot costumes, kick-ass action, anime-inspired material, and
visual sequences as only visionaries like Zach S can bring to the
Simply put, it was as advertised.
Emily Browning stars as Baby Doll, a girl who was checked into a mental institution by her abusive stepfather, whose imagination comes to life while she's inside. Maybe it's a coping mechanism, or something more purposive for her, or maybe it's Zach Snyder's creative way of showing difficulties in real life. With Baby Doll are other young "girls" Sweet Pea (Abbie Cornish), Sweet Pea's sister Rocket (Jena Malone), Blondie (Vanessa Hudgens), and Amber (Jamie Chung) who all band together and ooze testosterone (wait, or should it be estrogen, right? whatever...) with their swords, guns, heavily-armed vehicles, and martial arts moves, as they attempt to survive their daily hell. Impressive visuals are basically the norm of the film as expected, but at least this time we see more than we saw from the trailers (which were quick cuts but had enough oomph to get the average joe (READ: guys) interested to watch) -- kick-ass action and hot women. Hell, even women who like strong female leads could get into this, too. Though there definitely will be those that will get turned off by the way women are depicted in this film.
But don't get carried away - - this isn't Oscar-worthy acting, and the storyline, though well told in this visually-stunning, mind-F'ing, Inception-esque way--- is not that deep. But I didn't expect depth in a movie like this. And neither should you.
Acting was fine, especially for Jena Malone, whom I enjoyed watching when she was a kid in dramas like Stepmom and For Love of the Game. Abbie Cornish was good and intense. Lead Emily Browning had spunk and emotion in hey eyes; Jamie Chung and Vanessa Hudgens looked good, too, though not much else to see their acting chops. Oscar Isaac reminded me of that Numbers guy (is it David Krumholtz?), and he was scary and devious as Blue the orderly. While I am an admirer of Carla Gugino, her character's accent was somewhat weird and she only had moments, too. John Hamm's just a familiar name making a cameo, so his acting was severely underutilized. Like I said, it ain't Oscar-worthy, except maybe for visual effects/art direction, costume and the usual fare.
I still give it an 8 because I expected it like the way I saw the trailers, like I know Zach Snyder does films, and that's it.
Bring your popcorn and drink folks, and enjoy this ride. The Summer movie season starts with Sucker Punch.
Having a 2nd supervillain themed animation film in the same year might
have been thought of as overkill and ill-timed. Overall, though, that
this movie, Megamind, came after Despicable Me, was apt because I would
have simply been disappointed in Despicable Me if I saw Megamind first.
Megamind has all the right combinations, a decent plot, a couple of twists, an over the top villain who eventually evolves into a likable guy, couple of good supporting characters, an homage to Marlon Brando, a couple of FB-esquire pokes of fun at Superman (including a Lois and a Jimmy Olsen), humor (lots of witty ones, too), and a couple of nice action/fight scenes.
Most of all, it has a lot of heart. For a guy named Megamind, he sure shows some heart in this film that you can't just help but root for the guy (even if he was evil by design or by fate). Didn't recognize the voice talents of Ferrel, Fey and Mr. Pitt, though I could tell that Titan had to voice of actor/comedian Jonah Hill, so at least I can watch again the movie and see some snippets (if ever) of the real actor's or actors' speaking habits coming out in this movie.
I'm not sure if this will be a classic, but it sure will be something I can keep watching when it comes out in DVD a few months from now. Good follow up from Dreamworks after How To Train Your Dragon earlier this year. Keep up the great works your Animation division is churning out.
ADDENDUM - saw this in 3D. Like Despicable me, you may not necessarily be missing out if you watch it in 3D so watch according to your preference.
Having been a fan of the original A-Team when I was a kid watching with
my Dad, I had decent expectations about this one. First, it shouldn't
be complicated; winning formula on television, updated and amped up for
a movie. McG did well with Charlie's Angels a few years back, so this
isn't something new.
Start with a good line-up for the cast? They got it. Liam Neeson plays Hannibal Smith, a more elderly turn after his great action-suspense flick "Taken" from 2009; but he does it with flair and charisma that he makes a pretty good Hannibal. Templeton "Face" Peck is played by funnyman Bradley Cooper who, from usual supporting roles on both TV and cinema now plays a lead in an ensemble cast (well technically he did so in The Hangover). He's got enough chutzpah, so I thought he was good, too. Quinton Rampage Jackson, more known as a mixed martial arts guy in the UFC (tough loss recently, too in UFC 114), and Sharlton Copley, a relative newcomer in the mainstream film genre, as BA Baracus and Murdock, respectively, did good in supporting the two main protagonists. Throw in the ultra hot Jessica Biel and you've got one pretty good cast.
For the story, it is just an updated version of their original concept; this time, it's the Iraq War; this time you actually see people get hit (oooooh, something different from the relatively tame TV "violence"), so there are technically new things too.
But you throw in the usual McGyverish moment when they invent, create, weld, mold, their weapons or supporting stuff, humor, the almost trademark line, I love it when a plan comes together, and some twists and turns, then you've got a surefire Hollywood hit. Lots of old folks watching, too.
Something to kick back, enjoy the brainless parts, love the kick ass violence (er, relatively for a PG-13 model) and the acting. This A-Team's a pretty good attempt to make this team relevant in this millennium; if this makes good money, I would imagine this thing will spawn a sequel. Can you see it now?
Predictable? Sure, this ain't a comedy that pretends to be more than a
vehicle for the comedic abilities of the very likable Tina Fey and the
sometimes over-the-top (but not so much in this movie) Steve Carrell.
Aside from the surprising cameos in this show, there aren't much surprises. This is one of those movies where there's a couple that's been in a somewhat fixed circle of boredom in their lives. Heck, even their regular date nights have been very predictable.
Steve and Tina are the Fosters; upon finding out that one of their closest couple friends are splitting up, they try to spice things up by having a date in the city. In a case of mistaken identity, their would-be date night winds up an action-filled, sometimes funny evening. Except for a few scenes, this movie isn't anything innovative; but it's still nice to see Steve and Tina play likable characters.
The producers of this flick know what they have in these two actors, and the movie is enough to give their comedic and acting chops (nothing like Steve's nice acting ability in Dan in Real Life) a little flexing. With this knowledge, I still recommend this movie to those who want to enjoy a little break from the action-3D-filled movies out there now. A little date with your significant other watching this movie would be good.
I have to admit, I didn't know anything about this movie until it
started showing here in Manila around a week ago. The 3D version had
just opened (if I'm not mistaken) a couple of days later and I invited
my niece and nephew to watch with me (and my wife). Seeing how this was
a Dreamworks movie (Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, Madagascar), it was likely
that I'd watch it anyway... the question is, will it be another Kung Fu
Panda (which I rated a 10), or a Monsters Vs. Aliens (entertaining, but
not a classic for years to come; or good enough to watch over and over
again on DVD; let's face it, for every excellent Dreamworks animation
like Shrek or Madagascar, there's a Shrek 2 or a Bee Movie).
So I read up on reviews on a local website and on IMDb, and I was blown away by their reviews, both from critics and regular movie goers. People were generally pleasantly surprised, and enjoyed the 3D as well. So... I got all excited and had higher expectations all of a sudden.
Now on to the movie. There were so many great things from this movie ---
Entertainment - from a storytelling standpoint, this was up there with the best of Dreamworks animation; there was decent character development whether you empathize with the classic protagonist that's different from the rest of the Vikings or just appreciate the father and son relationship as it goes through the awkward years. The build-up from beginning to the climax was well done. There was much enjoyment all around with acceptable (and only occasional) lulls, and the lessons that can be learned were good and appreciable both from a child's standpoint and an adult's. Overall, How To Train Your Dragon (or some call it HTTYD) is a good blend of comedy, action and sprinkles of drama. After all, don't you want your animation to be a pretty good mix of everything?
Animation - Breathtaking; the aerial movements, the battles, the effects were all very good; not over the top, but released in appropriate doses needed to make every scene effective, memorable and entertaining. Watching in 3D adds more texture to the surroundings, puts the right amount of action at the right times, and was so generally well done that I hope this would be the benchmark of the perfect blend of cinematography and action using this technology (okay, this is not up there with Avatar's 3D but Avatar is technically live action, not animation). 3D doesn't have to be in-your-face like the old 3D's of Jaws or the more recent not-so-impressive 3D of Ice Age, or sometimes useless 3D used during the otherwise-touching and memorable movie "Up"
Voice actors - Okay, that the children/teenage protagonists didn't have the requisite Viking (Scottish- or Irish-like) accents was strange, but if you wave off the inconsistency and suspend your disbelief there, I can understand why some reviews said that the choice of voice actors was just right, and not over-the-top overwhelming that they begin to define the humor, and effectively take over the movie (like Robin Williams in Aladdin or Eddie Murphy in Mulan/Shrek). I was half expecting Gerrard Butler to shout his famous line from 300, but he was all right, too. So I enjoyed that, hahaha.
Dragons - maybe I was half expecting the dragons to speak but then again, that would have placed it into a box... a box of the usual Hollywood animation (or even non animation in cases like Dragonheart) crap. So this was good. You could still see it in the actions and expressions of Hiccup's dragon friend, "Toothless." Plus they did a bang up job in portraying many different kinds of dragons. I thought that was quite intelligently conceptualized and implemented perfectly, from the wart-hog looking ones, to the two headed variety, there were plenty of dragons for everyone's enjoyment.
Overall, this is a must-see movie for children and those who, like me, are children at heart. I enjoyed it enough to write a review again, hoping that those who are undecided will be convinced to watch it. Please do watch it, and look for that touching scene near the end between our young Hiccup and Toothless (made my eyes welt up just a little). No regrets in watching this. Even with heightened expectations, HTTYD still blew mine out of the sky. Or should I say dragon-blasted it? :-) Now to try watching it in Imax 3D before Clash of the Titans starts next week.
Managing expectations, I never expected Oscar worthy acting
performances. I expected kick ass action, amazing special effects,
fabulous hand to hand robot combats, and Transformers:Revenge of the
Fallen brings all that to the table.
The way I remember the 2 decade old Transformers the Movie animated film/video, how robots were fighting, were well portrayed in this flick. Generally good action from beginning to the end, with somewhat passable plot and timely comic relief provided by the humans and even a puppydog like Bumblebee.
I still left the theater feeling very satisfied in the entertainment that I experienced watching the movie. Can't wait to watch the next sequel in 2011 or 2012.
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