This review is a bit late I’ll admit but I just saw it again for the second time and wanted to talk about it. There are a few pieces of evidence that suggest this movie takes place after and is tied to The Lego Movie, but it is mainly it’s own stand alone movie. Now we have the task of seeing how it holds up as a lego movie and also a Batman movie. Lets see how it does.
- I enjoyed the humor a lot. This, like The Lego Movie, did not take it self seriously at all. The movie sets it self up with humor right in the beginning which sets your expectations right at the start. They refer to older Batman movies throughout and also reference many other pop culture figures. Plus the more you know about the various other characters in the movie the more funny references there are to catch.
- This is a great family movie. I love that my kids can come with me to this movie, laugh and have a enjoyable time, and I do the exact same thing. This movie was made well enough that while it is a kids movie there was still plenty to entertain me as well.
- It is neat how they are able to keep the world fairly true to how legos work. Aside from the characters who have some more freedom in their arms, every thing else works how legos would work. Certain things that would be a lot more dramatic in real life are less dramatic because the legos just click together.
- My only real complaint is that the story is fairly predictable. I guessed the overall plot well ahead of time, I was not surprised by the twists, and foresaw the character arcs a very short time into the movie. Though considering this is a kids movie this is more forgivable.
Awkward Walk-In Meter: 1/5
This is a kids movie. There is really nothing to worry about unless you have an older person walk in that never played with Legos. Then it is a little awkward just due to having to explain what legos are.
I really enjoyed this movie because I went in to with the expectation to laugh and have fun. This is not a serious movie so it shouldn’t be looked at through serious lens. Batman is a different style than others which makes him interesting, unique, and great to watch. This is a movie to go to with your family and have a fun time together. Bring the kids in your life and have a good time.
March is a heavy month for movies, so expect reviews weekly. It’ll die down in April as there isn’t much in the way of movies. So while we tend to focus on geeky movies on this site, it is very appropriate to have King Kong here. The original King Kong was a hallmark film that inspired countless filmmakers including Peter Jackson and Steven Spielberg. You have Kong to thank for the movies such as Lord of the Rings and Jurassic Park. So how does this film hold up?
- If you want a movie to turn the brain off to and let it entertain you, this movie will fit the bill. It’s a popcorn movie that will keep you entertained and excited for 2 hours. The action is exciting and at times, gloriously over-the-top. I was laughing during many off the action scenes just because of the utter shock of what I was watching. If you don’t take the movie seriously you’ll find yourself having fun.
- Samuel L. Jackson ironically was one of the most nuanced and deep characters in the movie (not hard in this movie but we’ll get to that in a moment). Playing a war hero from Vietnam who’s so devoted to military life works well for him. There were some interesting pieces of dialogue that were kinda easy to miss but where his motivation was revealed. I understood why he was doing what he was doing.
- The CG was good in this film, where if you like to see spectacle you will get it. I don’t think the art direction was on par with Jackson’s King Kong, but it was still very gorgeous to watch on IMAX 3D.
- Movie is at a comfortable 2 hour length, not 3 hours like the Jackson version.
- Japanese Katana because why not?
- I agree with Luke in that it is a great popcorn movie to just relax and enjoy. It can make you feel compassion for several of the characters but it doesn’t send you into a rage or sob fest.
- I like the way they conveyed that Kong wasn’t just a wild mindless beast but had intelligence and feelings. He wasn’t as flushed out Peter Jackson’s King Kong but they did at least begin to show that he was a bit of a character instead of an unfeeling force of nature.
- Tom Hiddleston was fun to watch. This role is a bit different than his role as Loki from the Marvel Cinematic Universe and it was enjoyable to see some of his diversity. His character was not as flushed out as I would have like but overall was good in this movie.
- Again going to have to agree with Luke. Japanese Katana. It had some amazing scenes.
- As it is with all popcorn movies, this movie excels at what it’s made to do but leaves some shortcomings in some story elements. The biggest one being the characters. All but two don’t feel like characters but rather stereotypes made to serve as plot elements. No one is really the driving force for the plot, but rather vice versa, where the plot is dictating what the characters do. There’s only really two characters that I liked, first was Samuel L Jackson who I mentioned in my likes and John Reilly’s character. Who I’ll talk about in detail later.
- There was a lot of exposition made in the movie that was clearly made for a future movie in mind. Because few of it really paid off in the movie we were actually seeing. I try to keep this reviews spoiler-free so I won’t mention any specific things.
- Kong didn’t feel like a character as much as Jackson portrays in his film. Granted this movie is considerably shorter, there aren’t many scenes that Kong can come off as more than a force of nature. There were scenes where they tried but still feels a bit flat.
- This one might need explaining. So the current climate of film economics has moved to an international market. By this I mean China is now one of the biggest consumers of films in the world. Hollywood being a business, wants in on the Chinese market. China has strict guidelines and limitations toward its imports including movies. To get around this, Hollywood co-produces with Chinese Film Production companies. On top of this, they add Chinese characters (who are big Chinese stars) to appeal to the Chinese market. This isn’t a big deal but it isn’t handled well in this film. The obligated Chinese character in this film does nothing. It doesn’t make sense for her to be in this movie other than to be one of the scientists (which you could easily combine two of them and nothing would change). If you have to put her in, at least make her do something! I’d be interested to know if she plays a much bigger role in an edited version of the film played in China.
- There were a few character arcs that were not my favorite. Like Luke mentioned, Samuel L. Jackson’s acting was great and he was one of the best developed characters, however I didn’t care for where he ended up at the end of the movie. John Goodman’s character was another one of those arcs that easily could have been so much better.
- I like to take my kids to as my movies with me as I can but from a father’s perspective this movie is not one I would take my kids to. There are a lot of jump scare and enough frightening images that I wouldn’t feel comfortable bringing my kids who are both under 8 to this movie.
Like and Dislike:
- John Reilly is really the only one that shows much emotion or has a sympathetic reasoning behind his actions. I like this character but he is absent for nearly a third of the movie. Telling his story about living on the island for over 20 years would have made a more interesting movie than the one we saw.
- I second that.
Awkward Walk-In Meter: 1/5
Near the beginning there’s a short scene inside a brothel/bar but nothing is explicatively shown. The rest is harmless enough, it’s your typical action violence from a PG-13 rating. Oh and there’s one F-Bomb, and it’s oddly not from Samuel L. Jackson.
On top of what Luke mentioned I’d say the violence is a little more than say your average Marvel movie. The violence is mainly creature violence and because of that there was more blood and some visible lose of limb and one impaling.
It’s no surprise that this is a typical action blockbuster. No one is going into this movie to watch a character-driven drama (go watch Logan if you want that). So if you want a popcorn movie, then that is what you will get, it is an entertaining 2 hour adventure. Granted there have been blockbusters that are not only fun but have good characters too. So it is a bit disappointing for Hollywood to easily abandon character and plot for action and spectacle when you can have both. One such movie was actually Peter Jackson’s King Kong. Which by the way is superior in every way, except for the length. It isn’t a bad-bad movie though, but I guess a good-bad movie, where if you don’t take it seriously, you will have fun.
Like we have mentioned above it is a great popcorn movie and is a lot of fun to watch. The plot isn’t complex and the characters aren’t super deep but it is still an enjoyable watch and a great escape from everyday life. There is an extra little scene after the credits that goes into something not too well developed in the movie so it worth staying for.
Welcome to the GMF movie reviews! Here we’ll go and do some reviews for the geeky movies to come out during the year. Since we’re not registered film critics, we won’t be able to go to pre-screenings and get these reviews out the day it’s released. So you may have a wait a few days or so since we’re watching the movies the same time you are. So we’re going to try and do reviews a bit differently than others may do it. It’ll be in a list form for the likes and dislikes, sometimes it’ll be me solo and sometimes the others will chime in. Lastly I would like to make a meter for “awkward walk-ins moments.” What I mean by that is the moments when your S.O., parent, kids, grandma, etc walks into a movie at the most awkward time. Not only for inappropriate content but also for just other bizarre stuff you may find in a movie. I think some people might find that useful when planning to see a movie. So let’s get into the review of Logan!
- A very emotionally charged movie. It’s rare for a movie like this to be as engaging on an emotional level like this. It’s a similar feeling after watching a deep character-driven drama (makes sense after figuring out that the director also made the Johnny Cash biopic Walk The Line). While this isn’t what you want for all movies, this was a breath of fresh air for the superhero genre. The Dark Knight was one of the only superhero movies that had a ending that was both inspirational and a bit depressing like Logan did. Coming to watch a typical X-men movie? This is not what you’re looking for.
- The acting was fantastic. Hugh Jackman truly nails the character of Wolverine in this movie. The creative freedom they had in this movie allowed Jackman to go to places emotionally that he wasn’t able to before. Patrick Stewart also does a great performance as Professor Xavier, which was very different from his other performances with the same character, but for the context of the story it made sense. You see them both given it their all for this movie.
- I could feel that the filmmakers and actors actually cared about making the best movie they could. I already mentioned the acting but even the director James Mangold had some energy put into the movie that was absent in The Wolverine. This maybe because Mangold had a lot more creative freedom than in The Wolverine which was an ok movie at best.
- While both previous Wolverine films had some major pacing issues, the pacing in this movie is spot on. It’ll give you breathing room when you need it. Then will crack up afterwards and keep your attention throughout the whole movie.
- Grounded superhero movie done right. Other X-men films struggled tonally cutting from flashbacks of Auschwitz to melodramatic comic book slock. This is not the case for this movie. It knows it’s a serious film, and it stays serious throughout.
Dislikes (or rather what others might dislike):
- There isn’t much exposition to explain why the world is the way that it is. Some of it is explained but it isn’t spelled out for you. So some of the backstory might be hard to follow. Also it does rely a bit on you understanding the X-men world. So if you’re brand new to X-men you may want to watch the original X-men movie first.
- The violence is up to 11 on this movie. THIS MOVIE IS RATED R FOR A REASON. The claws are used and depicted realistically in this film. Don’t pull a Deadpool and take your kids to this. This movie is not for them. There are plenty of ‘F’ bombs and ‘S’ bombs here too.
- My friends that came with me were emotionally overwhelmed after seeing this movie. It isn’t a fun movie to watch. This didn’t bother me as I was happy to actually feel something after a movie for a change. However it’s not really a positive emotion. If you go in expecting an emotional and darker movie, that is what you will get.
Awkward Walk-In Meter: 4/5
While the movie lacks sexual content and suggestive costumes like the other X-Men movies, this movie is full of profanity, bloody gore and action. This is a hard R and is not for kids.
Logan is a rare film, it’s a film where the studio took a chance and let the filmmakers make the movie they wanted to make. It’s hard to tell if it’ll pay off like Deadpool did but it did expand what can be done in the superhero genre. There have been dark superhero movies before but not to the level of being considered a heavy drama like Logan was. If you grew up with the X-men movies like I did, I think you can go in and appreciate the arc that was made for Wolverine. His solo movies have been duds up until now. Not only is this by far the best Wolverine movie, but it might be one of the best X-men movies yet.
The Holiday season has come and gone and we have received our now annual Star Wars gift. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was released on Friday December 16 (December 15 if you were able to catch an early screening). It is about the events that happen immediately before Star Wars Episode 4: A New Hope. It is a stand alone Star Wars movie that is not one of the episodes. Let’s take a look at our Likes and Dislikes.
Spoiler Alert! Spoiler Alert!
DO NOT READ ON IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS.
- I like that you weren’t hit head with an explanation for everything. In the Prequels I felt like there was so much exposition explaining everything. In A New Hope there are many things that are just mentioned but not explained like the Kessel Run and (initially) the Clone Wars. It left a lot to imagination. Jyn’s time with Saw growing up is not explained very much, and Mon Mothma and Bail Organa reference both Obi-Wan and Leia with out actually mentioning their name, to name a few examples.
- The more I think about it the more I like how they showed the darker side of the rebellion. Cassian killing an informant just to keep him quiet, General Draven ordering Jyn’s father killed, Cassian’s confession for the Rogue One strike team. It makes the rebellion just so much more realistic and believable.
- Darth Vader. I felt like this Vader was closer to the Empire Strikes Back Vader, not taking crap from anyone and more fully using his powers. I absolutely loved the scene when he appears in the rebel ship and starts taking on the the troopers.
- The space battle over Scarif. I loved the use of the classic X-wings and Y-wings, especially the use of the ion bombs to disable the Star Destroyer. I also loved the way they showed how desperate the situation way when they used a Blockade Runner to ram the Star Destroyer down into the shield generator.
- K-2SO. He was funny, sarcastic, full of personality, and ended up having a big heart.
- Saw Gerrara. I didn’t feel Saw was a well developed character and he seemed to out there. They could have gotten around using him.
- Saw’s mind/feeling reading beast, Bor Gullet. It was made out to be this menacing thing but is was short lived. Then the side effects of “going out of your mind” were overcome by 1-2 min of conversation.
- Princess Leia. I love the fact that she was in it but I didn’t like the lingering shot on her face. They did an amazing job. I was impressed with how close they were able get her face to the original Leia but it was still in uncanny valley and it bothered me. I would have been happier if they would have just shown her from the back.
My initial feeling for this movie was “Meh it was good. Not in my Star Wars tops but definitely not the worst either”. However as I have been thinking back on the movie, seeing it the second time and playing parts of it back in my head, I have grown to like it more and more.