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Tekken (2010)
Yet another poor attempt at turning a fighting game into a movie.
8 August 2010
After years of rumours and speculation , the live action tekken movie (based on the video game of the same name) is finally here- but is it worth the wait? The answer, sadly, is no. Tekken is dull, corny, surprisingly boring and is set in the same dark dystopian future we've seen in tons of movies before. And you know what? It really shouldn't have been like this. The game series that this movie is based on is colourful, populated with imaginative characters, and filled with wonderfully over the top martial arts action- why couldn't the movie be the same, instead of being the kind of gloomy , unintentionally funny , clichéd, and generic tournament movie that you would have seen on a video shelf in the early nineties?

Probably the most disappointing thing about tekken is the action. The movies fights were handled by world class fight choreographer and stunt man Cyril rafelli and the movie itself is based on a fighting game filled with authentic , kick-ass moves so it's not unreasonable to expect really stylish and thrilling fights from this film, right? But no, the fights are slow, packed with frustratingly quick cuts of action , and the few signature fighting moves from the game are obscured by bad camera angles as well as choppy editing. The films one saving grace could have been some cool action, but it doesn't even get that right.

If your fan of the game, then what's likely to annoy you is the way that the games characters are portrayed in the movie . None of the characters act or feel like they're supposed to- they've all been changed from cool fighting game characters to generic action movie stock characters. While some of the actors ( particularly Lateef crowder, Candice Hillebrand and Darin Henderson) look just like the characters they're playing, pretty much everyone else is miscast and one particularly poor casting choice stands out – Kelly overton as Christie monteiro. For those not in the know , Christie monteiro is supposed to be a brown skinned Brazilian , and I don't think it was fair for Caucasian American , Kelly overton to be playing that character. It's bad enough that Christie had to be Jins love interest (since when was Jin a ladies man ? And why are Jin and Christie an item, that was never even hinted at in the games), they had to change her ethnicity too?

Tekken is yet another video game movie that fails to satisfy anyone. Its not faithful enough for tekken fans and not entertaining enough for martial arts movie buffs who've never played the game. Its definitely not the worst video game movie ever made , but when you consider that the video game movie sub genre mostly consists of crap like house of the dead and streetfighter: the legend of chun li, is that really saying much? Hell no. If you want a fun and entertaining tekken experience then stick to the games.
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Honestly, Is it really that hard to make a good live action Street fighter movie?
8 March 2009
Warning: Spoilers
In the street fighter games, a diverse group of characters from across the globe face each other in martial arts battles. So wouldn't it make sense then, for a live action Street Fighter movie to be one of those fighting tournament films? You know, like BloodSport or The Quest or Superfights or Shootfighter or Mortal Kombat or even Dead or Alive ? A fighting tournament movie would have been the most logical way to adapt Street Fighter into film form and I'm sure that fellow fans of the game would agree with me. However, the people behind Street Fighter : The Legend of Chun-Li clearly didn't give a damn about the games fans, which explains why this corny, nonsensical and dull film defecates all over its source material.

Like the 1994 film, '09s Street fighter movie just completely ignores every thing about the game its based on. Sure, the characters share the same names as their video game counterparts but that's where similarities stop - while the game was about characters fighting each other in rounds of supernatural combat, the '09 movie is about a pianist taking her revenge against an Irish land developer, who decided to lose his conscience by pulling his child from his pregnant partners stomach (I wish i joking). While the game was high fantasy, the movie goes for grittiness and just ends up looking camp and anachronistic. While you could clearly see every punch, kick and fire ball thrown in the games fights, the movies fights are a poorly shot, over edited mess. Its frustrating to watch how badly the production team got everything so, so wrong -particularly the films out of touch writer, Justin marks, who just doesn't get Street Fighter at all and Andrzej Bartkowiak, who fails to deliver a satisfying action movie for the fourth time in a row.

So it's been established that it bears virtually no relation to the game, but is it any good, based on its own merits? Nope. While the '94 film was terrible , there was logic in its simple plot. The legend of Chun-Li on the other hand doesn't even have the courtesy to make sense- the story just rushes from A to B, not taking the time to explain all the crap its asking the audience to swallow and the boring narration doesn't help things.Dragging the film further into the gutter is the cast- every one sucks here, the biggest culprit being Chris Klein ("NASH OUT!!!!!!"). Totally abusing his status as the "token white guy", Klein overacts his ass off, delivers his corny lines like a low rent Keanu Reeves and really makes Raul Julias portrayal of M Bison seem like Oscar worthy stuff.

When viewed as a stand alone film, Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li is really, really bad. When you look at what its inspired by and what it could have been, its worse. Much, much worse. I'm glad it flopped.
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Good, but its no Batman and Robin., I'm lying, its brilliant.
26 July 2008
I wasn't a fan of batman begins- i didn't see much point in a 2 hour retread of an origin story we've already seen in comics, cartoons, trading cards, video games, children's books and the backs of action figure boxes. What i did like about it though, is that it put the series in the right direction -and that direction leads to the dark knight.

The dark knight is the most emotionally involving, suspenseful, exciting and captivating batman film to date. Its a well acted thriller with a overwhelming sense of scale and importance and thanks to a well written script, it will leave you guessing as to what shocks and surprises are coming up next.

What i love about the dark knight is how everything escalates. As the film progresses, the challenges get bigger, the "holy crap" moments get more extreme, the plot twists get more surprising- it really is brilliantly crafted stuff, its one of those rare films that just gets better and better and better as it goes on.

As previously mentioned, the film is well acted. Christian Bale once again proves to be the best live action batman,and there's solid supporting performances (including Aaron Eckhart's great, menacing turn as two face) all round but the star of the show is Heath ledgers Joker. And no, this isn't another one of those forced, positive reviews that over zealous fans give out in light of ledgers unfortunate death- I'm serious when i say that heath ledgers joker is fantastic. What he lacks in the sort of manic craziness present in the previous joker performances, he makes up for in this subtle, brooding, creepiness that just commands your attention when ever he's on screen.

So what will the next batman film be like? At the time of writing I'm unsure but if its anything like the 152 minutes of greatness on display in the dark knight, then I'm first in line.
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Iron Man (2008)
Now THIS is how you start a movie franchise.
8 July 2008
In the last couple of years, comic book based super hero movies have had a mission to accomplish and thats kick starting a franchise.The likes of Fantastic four, batman begins, daredevil and hulk to name a few, were made to be the start of a series. Iron man is no different, but where many of these sorts of films fail, Iron Man succeeds because it not only gets the series started but its a damn good film in its own right.

Exciting, funny and well acted, iron man is an all round great effort that sticks surprisingly close to its source material. The high octane sequences where iron man soars through the air and kicks bad guys asses are awesome to watch but thankfully this is a film where things are just as interesting to watch when no one is blowing anything up and its all thanks to the Jon Favreau careful direction. The plot, in which billionaire tony starks turns from brash playboy to amour clad hero, is engaging and enthralling and favreaus eye for great acting ensures some great naturalistic performances.

There are two stand out performances, the first and most important being Robert Downey Juniour as Tony Stark. Junior makes this role his own, injecting Tony Stark with a sense of cool, arrogance and an Errol Flynn like swagger that makes him really fun to watch and get behind as a leading man. The second (which surprisingly doesn't get as much praise as Downeys stark) is Jeff Bridges as bad guy Obadiah Stane. Although he could have played the role as a scenery chewing , typical villain, Bridges injects the role with a sense of realism and imposing menace, making for a convincing antagonist.

Iron Man is what a marvel comic book movie should be- a mix of great story ,exciting action, and a faithful representation of a classic character.
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Indiana Jones is back!
8 July 2008
Its been 19 long years since the last Indiana Jones movie and the 3 main creative forces behind the films have changed quite a bit over that time gap. George Lucas has gone all experimental with digital technology, Steven Spielberg has nothing left to prove as a filmmaker and Harrison ford isn't as young as he used to be. So the question must be asked- was it worth bringing out another Indiana Jones movie in this day and age ? "Heck yes" is the answer to that one.

Indiana Jones and the kingdom of the crystal skull is the kind of action packed, hilarious and thrilling fun we've come to expect from everyones favourite archaeologist. Though its set in a different era (the 50s!!!!) complete with a different menace (russian Communists!!!) and a different magufin (skull!!! a crystal one!!!!), the order of the day is the same as the other movies- Indiana and co travelling the globe and zooming from one exciting action sequence to the next. An attack from killer ants, a jeep based fight through the jungle and a motorcycle chase are just some of the speilbergesque thrills and spills on display here, all of which are applause worthy spectacles .

Its not perfect- crystal skull is a lot campier and more over the top than the previous films and there are many moments that will raise the eyebrow of more critical viewers (including some very CGI heavy scenes ), but on the whole, its hard to really lay into a film like this for implausability. I mean come on man, its Indiana Jones! What were you honestly expecting? Realism? If so you've come to the wrong place- crystal skull (much like the pulpy adventure serials its based on) is all about escapism and on this level, it delivers.

While its not as good as the other films, Indiana Jones and the kingdom of the crystal skull is still humorous, whip cracking,thrilling fun that serves as a reminder as to why we love Indiana Jones so much.
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Superman/Doomsday (2007 Video)
A bland adaptation of the 'Death Of Superman' saga.
24 February 2008
Warning: Spoilers
Superman:Doomsday is a mediocre adaptation of the controversial (and in my opinion, pretty dumb) "death of superman" saga from the 90's superman comics.

The animated movie treats the subject mater with seriousness and morbidity but for an event as big as the death of superman, the whole thing is no way as epic and dramatic as it should be. The lack of logical appearances from other heroes such as batman, wonder woman and other justice league characters seriously downplays the global importance of superman's demise- all we get to mark this iconic figures death are a few shots of people crying and key characters not smiling that much . Also, the aftermath of Supes death (the return of superman, the superman v superman fight) just lacks depth and conviction, no matter how many things blow up. Visually the film is passable, but the character design for superman just lacks the visual power that the justice league version had (especially with the inexplicable squiggly lines on his face).

On the plus side the voice acting is solid and the cameo from Kevin smith is hilarious.The best part of the film though, is watching it earn that PG-13 rating. While I'm not the type to watch movies purely for violence and mature content, there's something fascinating and genuinely shocking about watching a superman cartoon where people get killed in brutal and visceral ways . Probably the most jaw dropping of these sort of moments is the homo erotic scene where a shirtless Lex Luthor punches the living daylights out of superman, gets on top of him and suggestively purrs "who's your daddy?".

Superman:Doomsday is watchable and can be commended for trying to bring a more adult tone to a superman movie, but because of a very bland and straight forward script, its no where near the epic classic that it had the potential to be. Still, its better than the truly awful superman returns and that counts for something.....
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Jumper (2008)
A great idea, shame about the execution.
24 February 2008
What would happen if you could teleport ANYWHERE in the world in the blink of an eye? Thats the question explored in Jumper, a film thats as fast and action packed as it is hollow and underdeveloped.

The films theme of individuals who can vanish and reappear anywhere they choose is a great idea but its execution is a little weak in Jumper. Why? The blame rest squarely on the films instance on being the start of a series. Instead of taking time to develop anything in the movie, Jumper just whizzes by at an incredible speed, setting up characters, ideas and plot points without expanding or resolving or developing them. The whole thing is made to kick start a franchise of films where the story would be explained in more detail, but come on man, when you pay to see a film, you expect to see a clearly defined beginning, a middle and a satisfying end- something that Jumper isn't too concerned with.

Another problem that ties in with the films lack of depth, are the actors. While Hayden Christensen is as bland as usual, the cast (including the usually electrifying Sam Jackson) just sleep walk their way through the superficial script. Only Jamie Bell gives it some effort- his cynical Irish jumper would have made a much better lead character than Anakin.

However, while the film is pretty shallow there are some glimmers of goodness. The action sequences are fun, fast and frequent, the visual effects are cool and there's never a dull moment due to the films super fast pace.

It might sound like Im being too harsh on the film but its hard not to be when the movies concept is so great and the end product is as underdeveloped as this. If the film had a more detailed, more fleshed out, more self contained story, Jumper would have been a classic.
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I Am Legend (2007)
An engrossing and scary post apocalyptic thriller.
24 February 2008
To be honest, i wasn't looking forward to I Am Legend. It seemed as if a film that portrays Will Smith as the last man on earth could only be one of two things: 1. A post apocalyptic ego-fest, like Kevin Costners The Postman, or 2. A cross between Mad Max and the fresh prince.Thankfully, it turns out that the film is neither of these things- what it is in fact is an engrossing, tense and satisfying thriller.

As the lone human survivor of a plague that has reduced new york to deserted ghost town, Will Smith does an excellent job of holding the film together with a world weary, vulnerable performance that really makes you feel for his character. Large moments of the film is just him and his dog going through their daily routines and it makes for gripping viewing.

As for Smiths mutant costars, they are creepy freaks that do their job in the scare department but visually, they're kind of bland. Design wise, we've seen creatures like them before, particularly in Blade 2, and in many shots they look too much like CGI. The same goes for many of the animals that show up in the film (apart from smiths beloved doggy)- they are very obviously fake and its distracting in moments that are meant to be scary.

Some ropey CGI isn't enough to bring down the rest of the film though- I Am legend is a darn good post-apocalyptic thriller carried on the very capable shoulders of its star.
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Cloverfield (2008)
Watchable, but not as scary or immersive as it could be.
23 February 2008
On paper, cloverfield is a great idea: A giant monster invasion movie shown entirely from the perspective of hand held camera has potential for all sorts of coolness. However, while cloverfeild has some good things going for it, it doesn't quite live up to that potential.

The problem with cloverfield is that it feels a little too Hollywood- its supposed to show the action in a documentary style, but thanks to some teen soap style drama and unnecessary character development, that sense of realism and immersion that horror mockumentaries need to evoke to draw you in, isn't always there. Thats not to say that the film is bad- the film is definitely scary in places. There is a serious sense of dread and panic in scenes when the crowds are fleeing from the monster and news footage of monster attacks are chilling and shocking to watch.

Cloverfeilds biggest problem is the very thing thats most integral to the movie: the camera. I understand that the bad, sickness inducing, extremely shaky camera work is supposed to add to the realism but it makes the film difficult and at times, frustrating to watch. Even the micro budget Blair witch project had better and more realistic camera work and that film didn't have a CG monster to show off.

Cloverfield is a unique take on the 'monster attacks new york' theme that the American remake of godzilla tried to do 10 years ago and its good for a few scares, but its not as as effective as it should be.
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Ratatouille (2007)
Truly brilliant.
30 October 2007
Ratatouille is an absolute treat of a movie. Its a well written , consistently entertaining and visually stunning film that effortlessly ranks as one of the best of 2007.

The films story, in which a sewer rat dreams of becoming a chef, sounds pretty dubious on paper but thanks to a sharp witted script, excellent voice acting (particularly from o'toole) and that indescribable sprinkle of pixar magic , ratatouille transcends its odd synopsis and emerges as a wondrous film that you will want to watch over and over again.

As to be expected, the film looks gorgeous. From the ultra realistic food and wet rat hair to the beautiful shots of Paris, every frame of the film is a stunning sight to behold. The film is also very funny- the humour consists of well timed , witty ,character driven and sight gags that will have you laughing out loud.

Ratatouille is a classic. Do yourself a favour and go see it.
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The best of the resident evil movies.
24 October 2007
The first two resident evil movies weren't the most faithful of game based movies .Resident evil: extinction is no different , but what it lacks in staying true to its source material, it makes up for in being fast and entertaining, if a little superficial.

Its by no means perfect- there's more po faced exposition than actual dialogue and despite there being a lot of characters fighting for survival, there's no real character development or any of the sort of drama you'd expect from the scenario this film offers. But then again, maybe asking that of resident evil: extinction is asking for too much. This is this the kind of film where a sexy babe with two blades fights zombies , evil crows and mutant dogs-which is an indication of what you'll get with this.

And speaking of sexy babes with blades, millia does her action hero thing brilliantly . As usual she isn't given a huge stretch for her acting muscles, but she kicks ass with conviction - which is a good thing since this film is full of action.And that action is frequent, entertaining and well directed (if a little shaky with the camera work).

It doesn't come close to any zombie movie classic i could name, but resident evil: extinction is a competently handled, entertaining and action packed film . Best of the resident evil movies.
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Transformers (2007)
Watchable , but not without its problems....
2 August 2007
Transformers is a mixed bag. For every great moment, there's something corny and annoying to counteract it, resulting in a patchy viewing experience that's watchable but filled with flaws that stop the film from being first rate.

The transformers themselves look amazing; they are well realised visual effects that are stunning to watch. But whenever they're not on screen (which, sadly, is often) you have to sit through a holey plot that focuses on tons of one dimensional soldier and geeky hacker characters who do not need to be there. The only interesting human characters are the witwicky family who are a likable, quirky bunch .If the transformers and the witwickys were the main focus of the movie then things would be a lot easier on the attention span .

What's great about the film is its sense of humour, the jokes are well timed and hit their mark perfectly (although some of the humour is unintentional).Even the autobots are in on the chuckles (look out for what bumble bee does to john tutorro) .

Surprisingly, things are a bit disappointing on the action side of things. Sure, there are huge action sequences but they are so poorly shot and edited that you'll have to squint to see them . You'd think that Michael bay would want the audience to have a clear uninterrupted view of the millions of dollars worth of robot action on screen , but puzzlingly he does the exact opposite and decides to shoot almost every action sequence with violently shaky, amateurish camera work. Not recommended for anyone with motion sickness......

Transformers is filled with annoying and unnecessary bits but it's a watchable film with great visual effects and a welcome sense of humour.
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The long overdue simpsons movie is a hilarious and witty piece of entertainment
25 July 2007
The simpsons movie is witty,fast paced, touching, hugely entertaining and most importantly: laugh out loud funny.And if your a simpsons fan who's loved every episode , thats all you'll need from it.

However if , like me , your an obsessive fan who's noticed a drop in quality on the show from the late nineties onwards you'll see some problems. You'll see that structure wise the movie is basically an extended episode.You'll notice that the villain is a Hank Scorpio rip off. You'll feel that a lot of the plot points and character drama seem all too familiar.But in spite of all this , in spite of being a film based on a show that exhausted its best gags long ago, the simpsons movie is still absolutely hilarious and i take my hat off to the creators for managing to make it so.

A simpsons movie in the early nineties (when the show was in its prime) would have been better, but the very , very , very funny one we have here in '07 works just fine. Funny stuff.
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Spider-Man 3 (2007)
I guess spider-man 2 was a hard act to follow.....
18 May 2007
Though its superior to the likes of X3 and batman and robin , spiderman 3 suffers from the same problem of those films- it tries to encapsulate too many important characters and events from the comics it based on. Seriously, there's too many things happening at once here! You've got the Parker/MJ/Harry love triangle, the introduction of sandman , the introduction of gwen stacey, the introduction of eddie brock , the venom/symbiote saga AND harry loosing his memory. Its too much to fit in one film-the venom story alone is enough to fill a 2 hour movie.

Sam raimis film tries to give you as much bang for your buck as possible , but it spreads it self thin by including too many different elements and not fleshing them out enough . As a result, the moments that are supposed to be big and dramatic loose a lot of their impact, villains aren't given enough time to shine and character relationships seem a little hollow- it all feels rushed and insincere.

This may sound like a bad review, but its not.Spiderman 3 has good things going for it; the new additions to the cast do great with the material their given and raimi makes sure that there's a welcome dose of humour .But on the whole though its lacking - spiderman 1 and 2 were such brilliant films that seeing a mediocre entry to the series just feels disappointing.

Spiderman 3 is watchable , but no way as enjoyable,exciting or as heartfelt as its predecessors. Lets hope spidey 4 gets it right .........
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TMNT (2007)
The turtles CGI comeback is entertaining, but flawed....
21 April 2007
Thanks to the magic of CGI and cross generational brand power, the teenage mutant ninja tutles are back for a 4th big screen adventure. However, while TMNT is above average, its not quite the comeback i was hoping the turtles would have. The problem is the script-while it does display an understanding of the turtles and their world , it ultimately fails because of 2 big mistakes: one being its convoluted plot and the other being its lame, disposable villains. Rather than letting the turtles do battle shredder like we all wanted, the bad guy duties go generic do badders who aren't interesting enough to justify all of the screen time they get.

The heroes in a half shell however, are as likable as they're supposed to be. Though Raph and Leo are the main focus, (poor donny and mikey barely get a look in ) its fun to see them all staying true to characters - having brotherly squabbles one minute and kicking ass the next.

And speaking of kicking ass, the action is great. Some solid computer animation allows the action sequences to be fluid , dynamic and exciting -the best being Raphael and Leonardo's rain soaked roof top battle (which is easily the best part in the film ).

TMNT has its problems (including needlessly changed, baby faced versions of april and casey as well as the late mako miscast as splinter ) but its got enough good things to keep it watchable. If we get a sequel that improves on this films faults and lets the boys in green fight the shredder then we are in for a treat!

Till then though, the entertaining but flawed TMNT will just about keep you satisfied.
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Norbit (2007)
Eddie Murphy on auto pilot.
19 April 2007
For Eddie Murphy, Norbit marks a return to ruder, more cruder comedies.For the audience, its just a case of been there done that.To watch Norbit is to witness Eddie Murphy on auto pilot ,doing a collection of the sorts of things we've seen him do better in earlier films .Eddie in a fat suit? Saw him do it better in the nutty professor. Eddie playing multiple roles? Saw him do it better in coming to America. Eddie playing a bespecled ,good natured geek ? Saw him do it better in bowfinger.It all feels pretty tired and recycled.

But is it funny? Well there's a few laughs here and there, but thats not good enough. I mean come on, just look at who's in this : there's terry crewes,Charlie Murphy, katt Williams, Eddie griffin, Cuba gooding junior and marlon wayans.Add to that Brian Robbins , a director who knows how to handle comedy and you've got the contributing factors to a comedy that should be hilarious rather than ...okay.

As for rasputia, the big (no pun intended) talking point of the film, shes a disappointment.While Eddie Murphy and some great prosthetics make her seem convincingly tangible , all she is,is a physical manifestation of Murphy's "nagging wife" impression.Shes no way as interesting or funny as any member of the klump family Eddie Murphy previously played in the superior nutty proffesor

Norbit has its moments but disappointingly ,its no way as funny as it should be.
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300 (2006)
Stylish . Entertaining . Brutal.
25 March 2007
300 is a visceral ,wonderfully over the top and stylish slice of comic book action.

What i found surprising about zack snyders film is how simple it is. While many ancient Greek epics are big sprawling historical soap operas, 300 is a straight forward showcase of the spartans doing what they do best : war. And its an entertaining showcase. The stylishly edited battles are frequent and exciting spectacles that just get more crazy and extravagant as the film noisily marches onwards.

Visually, 300 a sight to behold. With the aid of its CG imagery , we are consistently bombarded with memorable, powerful and shocking images : Spartan kids beating the crap out of each other, deformed wenches having orgies and persian soldiers falling from a cliff top are just a few of the crazy sights on display.Its like a comic book come to life - which is clearly what the films makers intended it to be.

Because of the plunder-happy nature of the characters , you may have a problem finding anyone to root for, but having a character to relate and latch on to isn't what this is about .300 is about larger than life ,musclebound warriors engaging in visually stunning ,massively entertaining battles and it on this level that 300 most definitely delivers !
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Ghost Rider (2007)
Ghostrider is the best thing in it.
3 March 2007
Ghostrider is a brilliantly designed character . The chain ,the bike , the flaming skull for a head -he's just plain cool. In fact hes TOO cool - it seems that in any comic , cartoon or game hes involved with, he always comes out as the most interesting thing.

It works the same way with the movie: seeing ghost rider in action provides almost all of the films entertainment value. Watching him ride down buildings , fight villains and flip the bird to the police is a cool sight to behold. When hes not on screen though ,things aren't that interesting. Nicholas cage is funny and quirky as johnny blaze and eva mendes is impossibly sexy (as per usual)but for the most part its all very cheesy and feels rushed and episodic.Also, the villains are frustratingly lame , including black heart who's severely downgraded from his comic book incarnation.

When sitting through ghostrider , your best bet is to wait for the flaming skullhead to show up- watching him do his thing is tons of fun. Sadly the same cant be said about the rest of the movie.While its not bad it doesn't quite do ghostrider justice . Why ? Because hes TOO cool..........
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Hilarious and thought provoking
28 November 2006
What is Borat ? Is it an attempt to defy all the conventions of comedy? Is it a social experiment? Is it a study of American xenophobia? what ever it is, its freakin funny.

There are many tearful, cringe worthy laughs in this uniquely hilarious mockumentary but the best ones come from when borat is interviewing the American people . Black urbanites, white suburbanites, feminists ,politicians , southerners , northerners- when they clash with borat , the results are hilarious!The results are also thought provoking.Borats naive , socially backwards attitude allows his interviewees to come out of their shells with their own prejudices: witness the cowboy at the rodeo and the dumbass frat boys.

Sacha baron cohen (who carries the film as the titular kazakh) is brilliant here as he does the amazing task of making a fool of himself and others while consistently staying in character- its an amazing display that blows a lot of so called Oscar worthy performances out of the water.

Borat is hilarious . Take his advice when he says "come see my movie film "......
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There's action ! There's bikinis! ..........and thats about it.
25 September 2006
With its one dimensional characters and convoluted story, dead or alive was never really the best game to bring to the big screen . But nevertheless thanks to cory yune and a dubious ensemble cast, we now have a dead or alive movie. But is it any better than the corny trailers suggests ? The answer is NO .

Like the games its based on there's plenty of scantily clad babes and over the top action but thats all there is. There's no sense of suspense, interesting characters or successful attempts at intentional humour- just over edited fights mixed with a healthy portion of T&A.

Will the fans like it ? I can safely bet that once again the answer is no. Much like 94's street fighter movie, the characters are brought to life through a horribly mismatched cast decked out in cheesy cosplay outfits- only the most die-hard fans will be completely happy with this one.

DOA isn't completely terrible. The few fights that aren't edited to death are pretty good , and there's lots of laughs to be had from the corny acting and dialogue- but its overall buffoonery doesn't raise it above trashy "midnight movie on cable" status.

Its one for horny teens and dead or alive completists only.
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Little Man (III) (2006)
Little man = little laughs.
15 August 2006
Warning: Spoilers
When watching little man , you'll spend its running time trying to figure out its many plot holes . And thats not a good sign because this film is supposed to be a comedy ! Your supposed to be laughing at it !! But will you ? Probably not.

The main problem with little man is its concept- its far too ridiculous to accept (even as a cartoonish comedy ), so when the loud , laboured and over the top jokes kick in , they make the whole thing seem ten times stupider than it already is.

"But its a comedy " some of you might be screaming. Thats true but thats no excuse for such a dumb plot.I mean come on , think about it if you saw a baby with A GROWN MANS FACE , wouldn't you be the least bit suspicious? And if calvin wanted to hide the diamond so badly, why didn't he put it in a nearby shelf instead of a random womans hand bag? And how can a qualified doctor NOT recognise that calvin is a grown man ? i mean seriously...what ?

"Its not about the plot , its about the laughs" you might be screaming . Well heres the thing see, there are hardly any laughs in little man and that just make the dumb ass plot stand out all the more.

If you really want to watch a wayans brothers comedy with a belief suspending plot, stick to white chicks because at least that had a few decent laughs.What ever you do steer clear of little man.
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More swashbuckling thrills with jack sparrow and co.
14 August 2006
Pirates of the Caribbean dead mans chest is an exciting, funny and always eventful swashbuckler that quite rightly earns its reputation as "the empire strikes back" of the pirates series.

The sheer amount of stuff that happens in dead mans chest is astounding-old characters return , new characters are introduced, plot twists kick in, double crosses occur, swords clash , ships explode: its all happening and it all makes the films 150 minute runtime just fly by in a hugely entertaining whirlwind of old school adventure.

Following the first films tradition of great special effects , the CGI used to create davey jones and his fascinatingly cool crew of mer-pirates are just astounding.Jones and crew achieve that ever elusive level of realism that most CG creations struggle to reach-kudos to ILM for such a great job.

As expected there a cliff hanger at the end of this second chapter and its a damn good one! Bring on "at worlds end" ......
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So many characters, so little time....
27 May 2006
If x-men : the last stand was a burger, It would be the kind thats packed with too many ingredients and falls to pieces when you pick it up, leaving you with little satisfaction.

Okay, so thats not the best comparative metaphor ever , but my point still stands - X men: the last stand crams way too much stuff into its insufficient running time .The film is just an overload of comic book craziness and never gets a chance to breath and revel in the drama or the danger or the tragedy of the plot .

The films overstuffing affects the new heroes and villains pretty badly - here we have a group of characters with years and years of comics history behind them and what do they do in their movie debut ? Not much. Juggernaut ,callisto, beast and angel to name a few, turn up, do their little bit and disappear into the crowd again . Its pretty frustrating to watch and shows how overloaded this film is .

It not a total failure though. Lack of emotional depth aside, when the Saturday morning cartoon style battles take place, they are fun to watch .Performance wise , Ian mckellan , Patrick stewart and kelsey grammar add great dramatic depth to their roles and i must admit to getting a little geekish thrill at seeing so many mutants on screen at once.

X men the last stand is competently handled but is far from the dramatic epic its very clearly supposed to be. Lets hope part 4 will get it right.....
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An entertaining addition to the series that will make you forget how poor MI:2 was....
12 May 2006
MI:3 is a fast paced, entertaining entry to the series that will make you forget just how truly awful mi:2 was for a couple of hours.

Under the direction of JJ abrams (who cut his teeth on shows like lost and alias ) The pace is tight, there are plenty of suspense filled set pieces and the level of cool espionage spy stuff is high as well as fun to watch.

However while abrams is good at setting an air of suspense and urgency, he is pretty hopeless on the action side of things. The set pieces , one of which features a bridge being blown up by a fighter jet, are supposed to be huge and epic but are poorly shot and over-edited - you can only just about comprehend whats going on !

Poorly handled action aside , MI:3 is a solid piece of popcorn fare and if it serves an apology for the atrocious MI:2 then apology accepted !
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Its better than house of the dead. Which is like saying that being punched in the face is better than being kicked in the head .....
11 May 2006
After sitting through "house of the dead" (the only film that actually qualifies as a hate crime), the only reason i watched alone in the dark was to see if DR boll could do any worse than that atrocity.

Surprisingly it turns out that he couldn't -alone in the dark is actually better than house of the dead .However, thats something like saying that losing your hand is better than losing your eye .The more "boll savvy" of you will no where I'm going with this review.....

Alone in the dark is awful- its a generic mish mash of every crappy low budget straight to video B movie out there with an added pinch of the matrix , aliens and a few other superior movies .The plot(which is detailed in an opening text scrawl and STILL doesn't make sense)is self important and inconsequential while the performances are straight from the school of late night made-for-TV-creature-feature acting .

To be fair there is a some of entertainment to be found in this crap fest-but its only from the unintentional hilarity that arises in it : the crappy music video like action sequence, the weak dialogue and its incredibly straight faced delivery , the hilarious sex scene- it all just asks to be ridiculed.

In its defence, there is the odd cool special effect here and there but director uwe boll has nothing to do with that-and the fact that the best thing about uwe bolls film is something he has nothing to do with is a testament to his clueless lack of direction. Someone needs to go back to film school....

Is this a good example of how you should bring a game to the big screen ? Well the answer will depend on how seriously you can take tara reid as a scientist and boll as a competent director......
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