Strange blue lights start dropping from the heavens into downtown Los Angeles captivating all who look upon them, taking hold of them and drawing them toward the source. The bad news is that this source just happens to be a race of aliens here to harvest the human race down to the last person standing.
I love a good alien invasion (beware, spoilers ahead). There’s the all out, in your face kind ala WAR OF THE WORLDS and INDEPENDANCE DAY and there’s the sneaky back door kind like THE FACULTY and INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS. Both recipes work, though I certainly had my issues with aliens overlooking bacteria, caffeine or in some cases (I’m looking at you M. Night), water. These are the kinds of things you’d think alien scouts would pick up on when they’re casing the planet and as a result make for some debatable plot holes. My theory on an alien invasion is simple; if we ever got invaded, we’d have our asses handed to us which just happens to be the thought process behind SKYLINE and for this reason especially, I enjoyed the ride.
The story here starts off a lot like CLOVERFIELD in that we have a party built around two best friends. Add to that the standard dose of girlfriend drama (cheating, a potential move, pregnancy, they’re all here) and you’re wading through everyday waters. Now an alien invasion would throw off just about anyone’s day (especially after a hard night of boozing) so I was on board with the “make it up as we go along” vibe these characters were giving off. Their decisions (and arguments) made sense to me as they really didn’t have a hell of a lot of options. The only thing I didn’t get was the whole “we’ll be safer at sea” bit as in my opinion they’d stick out like sore thumbs on the water but hey, that’s me.
I can’t help but assume that the brother’s Straus, the effects team and the production team must all be pretty big fans of STARCRAFT because this film looked an awfully lot like a Protoss invasion on Earth. Some of the aliens were an obvious blend of sentinels from THE MATRIX and there was one (the ones from the end of the film, on the ship) that looked almost identical to the lickers from the RESIDENT EVIL films. Similarities aside, the monsters looked fantastic as did the ships. I love the use of blue light to ensnare prey (taking a page of the Dragonfish playbook) but I was confused by the idea they played around with when it came to breaking away from the light and or the effects it had on the human body. It felt like an unresolved idea that had potential but essentially went nowhere.
SKYLINE was about what I expected based upon the trailers and though most people seem to have a problem with the ending (which can be broken down into two parts), I enjoyed it as far as the invasion was concerned. The other aspect of the ending, which will be obvious when you see it, was indeed a perplexing turn of events. I won’t go into further detail but it does take a minute or two to digest. All things considered I dug this flick as I love this genre and as much as I think 3D is overdone these days I can’t help but wonder why movies like MY SOUL TO TAKE got shot in 3D yet this film didn’t (it would’ve looked awesome). If you’re a fan of alien flicks check this one out on the big screen but rest assured that it will look just as great on Blu-ray if you feel the need to wait.
Two years after getting married, Carrie’s starting to feel a little restless with Big and it looks like all the girls could use a break from the grind. When Samantha lands an all expense paid trip to Abu Dhabi for the four of them, the gang jump at the opportunity to get away for some girl time.
I am without a doubt one of the biggest fans of HBO entertainment. I won’t go as far as saying HBO can do no wrong but they’re pretty damn close. SEX AND THE CITY made sense to me, after all with the countless shows out there catering to men, their sense of humour and what they do and talk about behind closed doors; it was about time women got their due. My girl loves this show, so naturally I’ve ended up watching far more episodes than I wanted to but in all fairness I enjoyed it most of the time, mainly because of the dialogue and bond between the four friends. The first film was bound to happen and having a “Big” wedding also made sense to me. There really was no need of a sequel which becomes very evident when the girls end up in Abu Dhabi for a rather pointless adventure.
The first hour of this film was fine and actually felt like what a SEX AND THE CITY movie/episode should feel like. The wedding was hilarious and touching, beautiful to a fault and a fun way to expand and squeeze in some of the show’s key sub-characters. Liza Minnelli’s version of Beyonce’s “All the Single Ladies” was cringe worthy (I hate that song with a passion) but other than that I enjoyed it. I also dug Alice Eve as the braless nanny but then again, what guy wouldn’t. As far as the men of the series go, they were downplayed here. Big got the better part of this spotlight but even then he was put on the back burner. Smith’s part was barely mentionable, ending up being nothing more than a gateway for the trip and Aidan? Well, I found his whole presence here unnecessary.
Our girls themselves certainly haven’t lost their camaraderie (on set anyway, this film was a hissy fit nightmare of egos and estrogen led mainly by Kim Cattrall which was ironic to me considering the hormonal edge to her character) and pick up exactly where they left off. Their endearing friendship is what makes the show/films enjoyable and I will say that this magic was definitely still there but a trip to Abu Dhabi just wasn’t the answer. Everything about the country, hotel and scenery was breathtaking don’t get me wrong but it felt like a stretch and far too much of the film was spent there. I get that they all wanted and needed a vacation but whatever positive energy this place created is immediately squashed by Samantha’s recklessness which I suppose goes hand in hand with character but still came off as foolish to me.
SEX AND THE CITY 2 could’ve been a decent film had they not strayed so far from the beaten path and added senseless drama and ridiculousness as they went along. Carrie’s character has always bothered me; she’s a whiny, two timing retard who’s never satisfied with what’s she’s got; a fact that hits home yet again in this sequel. Samantha’s sex obsessed persona is getting tired, especially considering she by no means looks the part these days. Beyond that, the essence of what people know and love about this show is here, albeit it’s buried under the sand so to speak but it‘s here on some levels and for that reason this film is watchable to those who love the show. If you don’t love the show, or know very little about it, this will become two and a half hours of your life you’ll never get back.
I’ve always considered SEX AND THE CITY to be the woman’s equivalent to ENTOURAGE and by that rational considered it valid entertainment. The first film was cool as I’m hoping the upcoming ENTOURAGE film will be but if the boys land a second sequel that takes them half way around the world for nothing, I’ll be forced to accept the same kind of criticism that I’m giving out.
DC has a lot riding on Ryan Reynolds and this film. I'm not going to say I'm totally sold and I'm not gonna say I'm siding against it. There's still much more to be seen but all in all I know Reynolds can sell this flick. I just hope he leaves room and time for Deadpool because that's a role I really want to see him take further.
When the absurdness of this concept passes, what's left is Amanda Seyfried's hot ass, some pretty cool werewolf action and Gary Oldman at the helm. Sure, I'm not impressed by the fact it's from the director of TWILIGHT, but hey, no film's perfect right?
I remember watching the original Charles Bronson version back in the day with my grandfather (I sure hope this one doesn't have the same ending) and though I'm not a fan of remakes, especially pointless ones which I consider this one to be as not many people would know what this flick is, I love me some Jason Statham and I'm also a pretty big fan of Ben Foster as well so who knows, this one might not suck. Here's hoping.
Rome’s War with northern Britain has become a long and bloody stalemate that must end one way or another. Having no more patience to give, Rome dispatches its famed Ninth Legion to wipe out the Picts once and for all. Little do they know they’re marching straight into a trap.
The Roman Empire never seems to run out of tales of valour, ambition, greed and violence and I for one keep eagerly coming back for more and more. GLADIATOR, KING ARTHUR, HBO’s ROME and this past year’s SPARTACUS BLOOD AND SAND were but some of the recent treks through Rome and I’ve enjoyed them all. The story of the Ninth Legion was unknown to me before now but suffice to say CENTURION brings about a different take not on Rome per say but on the typical “Rome crushing its enemies” storylines we’ve seen numerous times in the past making this film an unexpected treat.
It’s not very often you see the good guys get their asses handed to them on this large a scale but that’s the tone of this film and it begins rather abruptly and then mercilessly continues until the very end. I dug that completely because I didn’t see it coming (though I probably would have had I read the back of the box). The Picts were a relentless enemy; fearless, brutal and above all else cunning in battle. Watching them fight was awesome indeed but like I said, a little overwhelming when it came to the beat down they were giving out. It was a refreshing change of pace however, and as time wore on I found myself almost wanting to root for them (which wasn’t hard considering the Romans were a bit of a mixed bag).
These Roman soldiers weren’t like Arthur and his knights aside from the general (Dominic West) and our lone survivor of the first Pict raid, Quintus Dias. The rest of their merry band of soldiers were about half and half when it came down to the question of hero or villain and that’s the main reason I didn’t really care if any of them got hurt. This was an interesting role for Bond babe Olga Kurylenko as not only did she kick all sorts of ass and take all sorts of names but due to a Roman “accident” she ended up with no tongue and as a result says nothing the entire film. I was okay with this though as she was deadly as hell with a spear and looking just as hot as ever.
CENTURION wasn’t the best Roman based film I’ve ever seen but it was entertaining and an original enough take on things to come across as relevant rather than milking a tired story. The landscapes used here are breathtaking and shot extremely well (I guess director Neil Marshall can shoot landscapes equally as well as caves). And if you’re looking for epic battle sequences overflowing with lots of blood, decapitations and random chunks of flesh than look no further because there’s lots of that going on here. The tale of the Ninth Legion is definitely worth watching despite having a good idea where the film is going from Jump Street. And if you don’t already hate Rome, be prepared to dislike the Romans just a little more.
I love a good flick about war and bloody battles and will never tire of hearing more and more about Rome’s gigantic ego. This isn’t the big budget extravaganza most of us are used to when it comes to these types of films but I guarantee it’s worth watching even if you only watch it once.
Scott Pilgrim is doing his best to get over his ex, jam with his band and find some way to justify dating a High School chick when the unthinkable happens...he falls head over heels for the new girl in town. Problem is she’s got seven evil ex-boyfriends whom he must fight to death to win her heart.
I’m going to be honest here, I had no idea who Scott Pilgrim was or any idea what he or this film was about when filming first began and we started covering it. I don’t remember who wrote the articles but suffice to say those writers and all those writing rebuttals were stoked as hell. I could tell this film had “fan boy” written all over it but from a trailer perspective I just wasn’t seeing it. I sat down with this flick thinking it was going to be ridiculous. Did I like it? Hell no...I loved every f*cking second of it!
The story of a dude falling for the new girl who just happens to have an evil league of seven deadly ex’s who he has to fight to the death is awesome. Clearly this flick leans heavy on the video game humour and as such I’m sure many people will be scratching their heads and or missing some of the very smart punch lines but luckily I’m not one of those people. The overall story feels like a Megaman game, with Scott as Megaman and Gideon as Dr. Wily but it doesn’t stop there. The band name, Sex Bob-Omb is pure genius and had me stitches. There were more than a couple musical themes straight out of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, I loved when he did the riff from Final Fantasy 2 on his guitar and the Street Fighter countdowns were awesome (not to mention the fact that each person he killed dropped coins). There’s no end to the video game hits here and the end result is truly epic.
I’m also a big fan of Michael Cera and his unique sense of humour. There are so many great lines here for Scott and it takes a guy like Cera to pull them off with such sincerity. The comic book over-writing with Cera’s dialogue and thinking process was hilarious to a fault and really worked well with everyone on board. And that’s the other huge thing here; the cast is perfect and play off one another brilliantly. Scott’s roommate is a crack-up, his band and sister are alright despite being a little predictable but I really loved his High School romance Knives. I mean really, how cool would it be to date a hot little Asian chick named Knives! Ramona was okay as the “it” girl but ultimately the film needed Knives to make that love triangle feel complete.
SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD is exactly what the cover implies, a game changer, on every possible level. Clearly both the writers and the director wanted to create something fresh, off the beaten path and above all else, special and that they did. The score was also fantastic, making the jamming and the battle of the bands a sight to see, not to mention all the insane visuals (like the dragons and yeti for example) making a description like “feast for the eyes” an epic understatement. There’s so much to love here that I could go on and on. I do want to add that both Brandon Routh and Chris Evans were my favourite of the evil ex’s and I would have rather seen either one of them at the top rather than Jason Schwartzman but at the end of the day they all did tremendously here.
I loved this film, obviously, but again, it’s worth mentioning that anyone not overly into video games, comics and anime might not feel the full magnitude of energy this film is putting out there. That said, those with open minds should feel Scott’s vibe and dig the film just the same, at least that’s what I’m hoping for.
When a ship falls to Earth containing Kara, Superman’s cousin, the Justice League must figure out what to do with her until she can learn to control her powers, but a sinister villain from another planet has his own intensions for Kara’s future and will let none stand in his way.
As I’ve mentioned before, both DC and MARVEL are kicking ass and taking names when it comes down to their animated films lately. With the exception of Batman, I’ve never really cared for the DC universe (though admittedly I did enjoy the Green Lantern film FIRST FLIGHT which opened my mind to what DC has to offer). BATMAN/SUPERMAN PUBLIC ENEMIES and JUSTICE LEAGUE CRISIS ON TWO EARTHS were both excellent but as with APOCALYPSE, I find myself more of a Batman fan than Superman or Wonder Woman. That said, Superman fans will love this one as it pretty much focuses upon Sups and his rocky introduction to Kara. I was unfamiliar with Kara’s proper origin story and was impressed with how it went down.
Now as a SMALLVILLE fan I have to say this origin story was quite different than the one we got in that series but then again, I can see why. Taking these characters to space and or other planets would be a tricky business on TV or the big screen (I’m half scared, half curious to see how Ryan Reynolds’ GREEN LANTERN handles this situation) and as far as the characters themselves go, most importantly Kara and Clark, this is one of the reasons I prefer SMALLVILLE. Superman comes off as pretty much indestructible in these films as does his cousin Kara, and because of this we need cosmic villains like Darkseid to make the battles seem even remotely fair (Superman did however get rocked by Darkseid here yet at the same time managed to level an army of Doomsday clones just prior to that which made me scratch my head in confusion).
Now fundamentally speaking, I don’t feel these heroes have the same camaraderie or comedic tone the Avengers do but Batman does tend to fill that void with great one liners and witty dialogue which always keeps me entertained. There’s also some racy language and bloodshed present to push the adult entertainment vibe which again, is very much appreciated and a telltale sign that DC is taking these films seriously from a fan’s perspective. The cut is crisp on Blu-ray, the score top notch and as always the voice talent does anything but disappoint with Kevin Conroy leading the team as the best and only voice of Batman as far as I’m concerned (Conroy continues his legacy in the upcoming PS3 sequel BATMAN: ARKHAM CITY and the upcoming online PC game DC UNIVERSE).
SUPERMAN/BATMAN APOCALYPSE scores another point for DC on the animated front and manages to keep my interest in DC strong. Again, the transition from SMALLVILLE to here is a little rough and though Superman clearly lacks the humanity here that he has in SMALLVILLE I still enjoy seeing him in action. Supergirl is nowhere near as exciting to watch as Batman and Superman are but this was a fun origin story and a cool continuation to the this series of films, leaving me stoked with anticipation for the next film in line.
If you’re a fan of these animated adventures you’ll have nothing to complain about here. I’m still not sure if I enjoy DC or Marvel more lately but one thing I do know is that a lot of hard work goes into these films and I for one appreciate it. There’s lots to love here and it’s all well worth your money.
Peter Highman is about to be a father but upon bumping into an odd fellow outside the airport, he’s thrown into one mishap after another landing him on the no-fly list. That same odd fellow, Ethan Tremblay, offer’s Peter a ride to LA and as much as Peter doesn’t like the idea, he has no real choice but to accept if he’s going to make it home in time.
DUE DATE comes off as a really funny film from the trailers but I could easily tell that this was one of those times when they showed far too much of the goods up front before we paid to see the final product (damn marketing). Todd Phillips’ THE HANGOVER trailers felt the same way but ended up tickling the old funny bone with tons of extra laughs which sadly is where DUE DATE falls short. There are quite a few humorous moments to be sure, but more often than not these moments are crushed under the weight of a slow momentum and confusing direction.
I like the story which is original enough and easy to get on board with especially when it came down the airport bit. I loved the whole plane sequence and immediately dug the friction between our two main characters. The dialogue here is gold and Robert Downey Jr. is on fire yet again, carrying this film like it’s a walk in the park. If anyone deserved a second run at Hollywood its RDJ and I for one think he’s brilliant. He does play a slightly shorter fused Tony Stark on Red Bull here but that’s the sort of flavour that makes this film go down as easy as it does. Jamie Foxx and Danny McBride made fun cameo appearances (I can mention them simply because there’s no surprise due to the trailers) but it would have been cool to see more out of them as both are well known when it comes to comedy.
The wild card here is Zach Galifianakis who beyond the shadow of a doubt is playing the same sort of character he did in THE HANGOVER. I found this curious from Jump Street considering THE HANGOVER 2 is currently on the horizon. It seems to me that Galifianakis is pulling a Russell Brand here by overusing the same persona and I really hope this doesn’t hurt the laughs when THE HANGOVER 2 actually hits theatres. I’m not saying Ethan Tremblay isn’t funny because he is, however TOMMY BOY and BLACK SHEEP come to mind here as Chris Farley and David Spade tried very hard to recreate a good thing and failed. I wouldn’t call Galifianakis’ exploits here a failure but his childish antics weren’t nearly as funny here as they were in THE HANGOVER.
DUE DATE was a refreshing step away from all the Horror titles we’ve been seeing of late and ended up being a decent comedy despite its flaws. I enjoyed the ending here and have nothing against road trip comedies; but much like PINEAPPLE EXPRESS and HAROLD AND KUMAR GO TO WHITE CASTLE (which were both admittedly better than this one), there are a couple times when this film veers into the oober-ridiculous for the sake of mischievous antics (the border escape was a touch much and I’m still not sure what to think about the masturbation stuff). This comedy is worth seeing for RDJ alone, the man’s hilarious and his reactions to the many bumps in the road are indeed priceless (the part with the kid was hysterical) but I have to be honest and tell you that this is definitely one due date that can be pushed back until DVD and BLU-RAY release.
I liked SKYLINE, I truly did but this sort of all out war centered around an alien invasion is definitely a cool route to take and looks to be something worth watching. It's all been done before but full scale military assault is always fun to watch so here's hoping this one doesn't disappoint.
Sure, Nicolas Cage is all over the place lately and other than BAD LIEUTENANT 2 and KICKASS I haven't been overly impressed with his work. This flick could change all that. This is no SOLOMON KANE but it's about as close as I'm gonna get there's no sense in complaining. I can only hope this is enough to fill the Fantasy hunger gap until something better comes along.
I'm gonna be honest here, I have absolutely no idea what the hell's going on in this trailer/movie. I mean, is this chick crazy, is she locked up, who the hell knows but what I do know is that there's a ton of hot chicks, dragons, epic battles, swords and plenty of badass imagery so I guess I'm in. I've sat through movies for less.
Trying to piece his life back together after a tragic accident, Max decides to help his father by becoming the new night watchmen at the Mayflower, unaware of what happened to the previous guy. Max is also unaware of the murder that transpired in the building until the young woman starts to appear to him in the mirrors while at the same time killing off his fellow employees.
I was a fan of the original MIRRORS film simply because of Kiefer Sutherland. Don’t get me wrong, it was a cool horror flick and sported some over the top gore thanks to director Alexandre Aja who simply adores the overabundance of red stuff. And speaking of that, the scene that made MIRRORS as popular as it is (the bathtub scene) is one that will forever be remembered by all those who watch it. That said, MIRRORS didn’t do much else for me and the last thing I ever expected to see was a sequel, yet here we are. MIRRORS 2 is a clichéd waste of time, filled to the brim with a stiff dose of “same ol, same ol” that goes down a lot like turpentine.
If you’re reading this I have no doubt you’ve already read my SAW 3D review as well, and as I stated in that review, many horror films have branched off into the torture porn end of the spectrum, pushing pointless gore tactics like it’s a fresh concept. Well, it isn’t and that’s exactly what we get here. This film’s storyline is weak and really doesn’t go anywhere for the first hour or so. What we do see right off the bat is a gruesome series of deaths via the evil versions of each victim in the mirrors. Sadly, you don’t know why it’s happening until close to the end of the film, instead they focus on Max’s traumatic experience (another used up scenario) which is tossed and forgotten as the story unfolds making me wonder why in hell they spent so much time with it in the first place.
I’m not fond of the cast here either, led by a boring Nick Stahl. I thought he was a horrible choice for John Connors in T3 and though his performance in SIN CITY was of merit, it’s clearly done nothing for him as now he’s showing up in straight to DVD flicks where I guess he belongs. The acting was rather stiff across the board anyway (I did like the two cops, they’re dialogue was hilarious), not surprising as most of these characters don’t live very long anyway. I’m still confused as to why Max’s father was even in here to begin with, talk about a pointless character build up, he clearly had nothing to do with what was going on yet the mirrors were still going to kill him and then poof, he’s gone from the story leaving nothing behind but an odd plot hole.
MIRRORS 2 is just another drummed out, pointless, straight to DVD sequel that does nothing but give the original a bad name. The entire premise makes no sense; why would they rebuild the Mayflower a second time considering all the carnage that happened there twice before? Why would anyone want to use one of the original mirrors after what happened in the last movie? We could debate the lack of logic surrounding this film for hours but there’s no need as I’m sure you’ve gathered by now that watching this movie is about as smart as juggling rusty fish hooks in the dark. The first one is still worth your time but watching the second one just may give you seven years of bad luck.
Left for dead, Detective Hoffman struggles with betrayal and loose ends while another game is set in motion. A former Jigsaw survivor (whose been cashing in on his story) is put to the test and forced to revisit the sins of his past forcing yet another unseen hand into play.
Now I know Horror has strayed off the beaten path a bit over the past few years, veering into the realm of what some have decided to label the “torture porn” era with films like HOSTEL and HOSTEL 2 leading the pack and though the SAW films certainly fit the bill, I have and always will consider them to be different from all the rest. SAW came along first and started it all (though in all fairness I firmly believe that SAW is one of SE7EN’s many illegitimate children) and though brutal, SAW was magnificent in every detail with an ending that put everyone back on their heels. SAW 3D brings the series full circle and takes things out with a bang. As a fan of these films (worried as I was about all these sequels), I can honestly say I was impressed with this final instalment.
While I’m being honest, since Jigsaw’s death at the end of SAW III, I’ve gone into the sequels thinking, “Okay, this will be the one that takes things too far,” but oddly enough I’ve never felt that way. Don’t get me wrong though, I think it’s absolutely hilarious that Jigsaw’s been dead for the past four films yet his sphere of influence is ever growing. What started out as one disgruntled man out to show people that life is precious and shouldn’t be taken for granted has turned into a Jigsaw cult with more members than you can shake a stick at. This is one of two things I find hard to swallow when it comes to these films. Jigsaw was clearly brilliant, I won’t take that away from him, but these films would have us believe that the only master plan bigger than Jigsaw’s would be God’s himself and it comes across as a bit of stretch at times.
My only other beef with these films are the traps. Not to say they’re underwhelming in the least because that’s not what I’m getting at here, the traps are sinfully grotesque and efficient (I literally loved the 3D aspect of things to pieces) but I didn’t realize Jigsaw or any of his merry band were engineers for NASA. Now back in the first SAW Jigsaw used trip wires attached to shotguns which even I could MacGyver up if need be but as time wore on these trap got more and more complex while Jigsaw himself got weaker and weaker. I can’t see that ex-junkie chick putting these things together and as much as I like Detective Hoffman, I don’t think they taught that sort of thing at the academy. All that aside these traps always work exactly as planned (and again, these things make assembling a computer tower chip by chip look easy) which is so contrary to life. I would have loved to see at least one trap fail at some point for believability’s sake.
SAW 3D (beyond the aforementioned nitpicking which if I don’t mention someone else will) was a devilishly good time on the big screen and the perfect way to wrap things up. The story is top notch and as much as I want to talk about it, I just can’t without giving too much away. There are a lot of plot points, characters (it was nice to see Sean Patrick Flanery in good form again after the disappointment that was BOONDOCK SAINTS 2) and angles that make this film shine but to discuss any of them would potentially rob this film (and you) of the glory deserved. Suffice to say, I’m impressed with where they went this time around. Jigsaw makes an appearance, Hoffman is still the badass we’ve grown to love and Jigsaw’s rule of punishing those who deserve it lives on. The only thing that can ruin this film now is greed, so hopefully Hollywood lets this series one go, regardless of how much money it makes. Don’t worry guys there’s still loads of money to be made off the box sets.