Archive for the ‘MOVIE REVIEWS’ Category

8 out of 10

Might actually be better than the first, which is saying a lot.

First of all, to all the naysayers who say my movie reviews are too short, I apologize, but I don’t want to give away spoilers or ruin a movie with too much criticism, so I keep it short and to the point.

Kung Fu Panda 2 was not a movie I was all that excited about. Dreamworks doesn’t have the greatest history with animated sequels (*cough*Shrek3&4*cough), but I went after hearing some excellent reviews and word of mouth. And I really liked this movie. Jack Black, to my ears, was a lot less “Jack Black” and more in fitting with the character this time around, and I was really happy to see the rest of the furious five get more screen time and lines. Gary Oldman was superb as the villain, and all around the cast did an excellent job. One of my favorite composers, Hans Zimmer, reprised his role alongside John Powell to score the movie, which really enhanced and brought energy to the scenes, which Zimmer especially has a talent for.

Story-wise, not too many surprises, but some big emotional moments were well implemented, and will help propel Po the Panda along an arc which I’m sure will continue into the next movie, based on the ending.

All in all, I highly recommend, especially if you liked the first.


Posted: 05/07/2011 in MOVIE REVIEWS

7 out of 10

To start off, I want to say that I thoroughly enjoyed THOR. It had action, comedy, a little romance, and a whole lot of Shakespearan-esque drama and tragedy, which worked well to flesh out the character and the movie. My only gripe is that the whole thing felt like a prelude to THE AVENGERS, and while I am excited for the uber-superhero movie of our time, I’d hope THOR could stand alone.

Acting wise? I thought everyone was cast well, with Natalie Portman and Chris Hemsworth giving especially compelling performances (not to short change the amazing work by Tom Hiddleton and Anthony Hopkins) I was surprised as the humor they pulled out of the situation, as I worried it would be very stoic and serious with all the Godly drama going on. I was also really impressed with the special effects. I saw it in 3D and couldn’t help but marvel (pun intended) at how beautiful everything looked. Especially the rainbow bridge, which I vaguely remember being very cheesy in the comics.

All in all, an excellent start to the summer movie season, and I highly recommend to everyone!


Posted: 03/25/2011 in MOVIE REVIEWS

7 out of 10

Thoroughly enjoyable, but a few slow moments.

The debut film for ILM’s animation department, starring actors from Pirates of the Caribbean, directed by the director of Pirates of  the Caribbean, and scored by the composer of Pirates of the Caribbean. Based on its pedigree alone, I went into this movie with high expectations. (I know, POTC3 wasn’t the greatest, but I wouldn’t blame the actors or composer for that)

Though not laugh out loud funny, I chuckled quite a few times, and thought a lot of the sequences were very amusing. The aforementioned slow moments occurred right before the 3rd act, with some crazy desert hallucinations involving golf carts and cowboys that just seemed very out of place.

In the end, I thought it was a fun movie, and would definitely recommend it for everyone. It had some great action sequences, the music was great, and Johnny Depp really brought the title character alive with his vocal performance.


Posted: 12/17/2010 in MOVIE REVIEWS

6 out of 10

Worth a watch as a decent popcorn flick, but don’t go in with the highest of expectations.

First, all of my fellow glasses wearers, don’t go see TRON: Legacy in 3D unless you’ve put your contacts in, because I forgot and had to wear my glasses under the damn 3D glasses, and with all the bright glowing imagery in TRON, I was getting refracted double-vision the whole movie.

Ok, as for the movie itself, despite its run-time of over two hours, I hardly thought it dragged at all, and in the action scenes it was thoroughly entertaining and engaging, the same goes for any time Jeff Bridges (the real, not the digital)  was on-screen. I think they believed a little too much in their digital young Bridges, and he constantly took me out of the movie with his fakeness. The plot was pretty standard, they were none-too subtle about the things they borrowed from other great sci-fi films, especially all of the Star Wars films (old Bridges = obi-wan, including a Jedi mind trick moment, at one point Sam Flynn was wearing a dark cloak and hood with a disturbing Hayden Christensen as Anakin vibe, and there was even a double-sided laser weapon). The only really negative thing I have to say was the whole story Arc of Tron himself, who I know I might have understood/appreciate more if I’d been able to re-watch the original before seeing this, as his story seemed odd and his character turns didn’t make a lot of sense to me.

Like I said, go see it, its entertaining, but if you enter with high-expectations, you will leave disappointed…

8 out of 10

It’s about time it got dark. I was honestly waiting for a darker more serious Harry Potter film ever since part 5, and I can honestly and excitedly say, they finally did it with Deathly Hallows Part 1.

So yes, I’d give this movie an eight out of 10 on my scale, and recommend it to anyone who even moderately enjoyed the Harry Potter movies. It moves fast with a lot of momentum, a lot of blink and you might miss something important details, a LOT of  call backs to previous movies and shout-outs to book fans, and for a movie that essentially only follows the 3 main leads, it is very engaging. By which I mean the 3 kids have really grown up and gotten some acting chops, and the movie no longer relies on weathered acting veterans to insert the dramatic vibe into the story, Harry Ron and Hermione can carry it all on their own. Which is not to say there weren’t some memorable cameos from favorite characters from past movies, its just that they were only cameos in this film.

Another aspect of the film that I enjoyed that I wish they’d employed all along, is this visual sense of “here’s something from the books on the screen, we’re not gonna explain it, but those who’ve read the books know what it is” – it’s a way of getting a lot more details in the movie from the book without having to go into too much exposition around it, and its a great reward for those of us who read the books.

Other than that, go see the movie, I’m sure it’ll entertain, and I hope I’m not alone in getting even more excited for the final Harry Potter based on the quality of this penultimate film.

9 out of 10

Actually Lives up to the Hype.

Although I usually hate going into movies that have been hyped up to this degree, I had a very good feeling about this movie, especially as I knew it was directed by David Fincher (Fight Club, Se7en) and written by Aaron Sorken (The West Wing). From the moment it began I knew I would enjoy the dialogue if nothing else, for it was quick, witty, and containing bits of brilliance that you had to be paying attention to catch.

Acting was as good as you could get with such a young cast, though I did laugh at the idea that one of the actors will be playing Spider-Man in upcoming years, slightly taking away from his more serious role here.

Even if you don’t care for Facebook or its creator, it’s a good watch, with an interesting take on college networks and what really made Facebook so popular.


Posted: 09/29/2010 in MOVIE REVIEWS


6 out of 10

Not great, but not terrible either.

I was recently invited to an early screening of  BURIED at the Lionsgate Screening Room, and though I had my misgivings about the film, I sat down, ready to endure 90 minutes of Ryan Reynolds yelling in coffin.Though I will admit to glancing at my phone for the time more than once, it was a film that was unique in its setting and story paces, and made the most of the limited space it set itself in, in a variety of creative ways.

The music, always intriguing to me, was the kind one would normally find in a big action/adventure flick, and it really opened up the film for me. Reynolds was surprisingly well cast, and I was jarred out of the movie only once by what I deemed a bit of “over-dramatizing” on his part. He kept me involved in the story, and truly did manage to carry the whole movie.

The downside? Perhaps a little predictable, a little too politically skewed in parts, but the quality of the film more than makes up for these negatives, and I recommend it to people as something they should see, though not necessarily in a theater.