Category Archives: Movie reviews

Dark Phoenix, movie review

First let me say, don’t stay after the movie and wait for the extra scene after the credits. There is none. For some reason my theater kept the lights dimmed until the credits were finished, making you think there something worth waiting for. There isn’t.

I think if these movies came out quicker, the fan base might still be there. But since they are so spread out, when other franchises are able to pump their sequels out in nearly yearly installments, we as fans are now spoiled and I think this movie suffered for that. I personally kept thinking of how the actors all look different than their original counterparts from the X-men in the first set of movies. I get it, the Xmen universe, comic book version, is known for having plenty of variations to their characters, so I tried not to get hung up on that.

But the emotional impact wasn’t there that the original cast brought. The actors just weren’t as good. They are kids, which I guess was the idea, but somehow it didn’t work right. Every time the movie looked like it was going to get good… it would stop, jerking you back to the slow pace of “everything is okay.”

For a movie with a lot of action, and a very large character development, it did it all with a fizzle. Everyone was holding themselves back, and it showed, in a not good way. Maybe its because we have so many other action movies out now, maybe it was the acting, I dunno, but I left the theater feeling very “meh” about a franchise of movies I used to be very excited about.

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Aladdin, 2019 edition, movie review

Not sure why Disney keeps wanting to remake all the animated classics, but I, like most, was too curious to stay away. I was a kid who watched the animated Aladdin on repeat for an entire summer, and delicately watched the tv-spin off show.

So I was a bit bias going in and fully expected it to be horrible. I’ll say this, I was expecting it to be a -20 on a 1-10 scale… it came in at -15.

They did scenes that were exact replicas of the animated version. And those scenes seemed stiff. Like watching a high school play. But there were new side stories added and those scenes were amazing, even the acting improved.

The amount of auto tuning on the songs was also crazy. Will Smith is a rapper not a singer. He sang sometimes as normal him, which was horribly out of tune, then the auto tune would turn on, along with the instrumentals and he would be amazing. Same for the other actors doing their songs. There was only one new song which was split into two scenes, and it was obvious the writer of that song was not as talented as the ones who wrote the originals. The other songs are all copied from the animated version, but if you listen carefully a few lyrics here or there are tweaked.

The budget seemed small. The scenes all seemed fake. Like high school production scenes. Nothing was shot outside and it showed. I felt like I was in the studio watching them film on the sound stage. All the animals are CGI and done poorly in my opinion. The animals didn’t fit in the movie and it seemed like the directer didn’t want them in the movie but was forced to include them, so he rushed every scene or moment the camera was on them.

The genie had good and bad part parts. They added gold arm tattoos and gave him a glitter/sparkle touch, which was nice. But then they CGI’ed Will Smith’s blue genie version too much, making him look buff and such. He looked like a guy wearing a foam muscle suit.

**Spoiler alert**

Genie gets his own love story this time. And Jasmine wants to be Sultan. Its very heavy on the women empowerment thing. She gets to become Sultan at the end of the movie and then she can change the rules to marry whoever she wants. So poor Aladdin goes from being street rat to trophy husband. Cute man de-powerment moment.

Overall the movie seemed bipolar, going from exactly copying the original movie in some scenes, to abruptly branching off in its own direction in other scenes. It would have been better if it’d done one or the other, and since the acting seemed better in the new material, I believe that would have been the better direction to go. A female based movie about Jasmine.


The Upside, Movie Review

I’m not quite sure what to make of this movie. It’s not a comedy, but not really a drama either. I think my main problem with it is, there’s no real significance to it. It started off strong, with the disabled man picking a person with a criminal record to be his care taker. But then that was it. There was the story of the new caretaker learning how to take care of him, and some bits about getting his life squared away, but there wasn’t much of an actual story or plot. No, big climax or huge lesson for the characters to learn. It was just normal day to day stuff and then, oh, the movie is over.

I know this tale was based on a real life events, but it’s an example of Hollywood needing to go the extra bit and add more drama. It doesn’t help that the movie is two hours long.

The acting is good, no complaints there, but the story is very lacking. There’s never a real emotional moment. I never got attached or bonded with anyone. So in the end, this movie gets a thumbs down. I’d say, wait and watch it when its on tv, but to be honest, no one watching at home will stick with it the whole two hours.


Holmes and Watson, Movie Review

As I’ve seen other reviews say, if you’ve seen other movies by Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly, then you will enjoy Holmes and Watson. Their flavor of comedy stays true with a new take on the classic of Sherlock Holmes.

The comedy has some unique moments of mixing new culture with old. Such as drunk telegraph texting and a workout routine that might seem familiar to some. It also pokes fun at things like how Holmes is doing opioids, which was very common in that time-frame, and some jabs at the Titanic. I liked how it wasn’t just a dumb jokes comedy, and there were actually layers to the jokes that made you think a bit.

Overall, it’s a good movie to hit up for some good laughs.


Escape Room, Movie Review

Walking into this film, I was expecting a new spin on the Saw movies. However, I wouldn’t relate it to that. The movie is not graphic and actually keeps things PG enough that I was expecting to find out the characters weren’t dead. In fact, I think it would have played out a bit better if they’d found out at the end, that everyone was fine.

The movie focuses on the puzzles and riddles that are encountered in the rooms, with the odd twist of the story being personal to the people. The puzzles are literally made for them. Which to me, creates a flaw, because if people are dying off as they progress, you could lose the person who knows the answer. Because some of the riddles are impossible to solve, unless you know the personal story behind it.

There is a unique twist toward the end of the movie, which I liked, although it wasn’t all that believable. Of course, the entire movie was a bit far fetched, so I guess it kept true to its theme.

This genre of movie seems to be growing in popularity, because it is very similar to the idea behind Unfriended: Dark Web which came out last year. People are watching the events, placing bets and pretty much just wanting to see people die. Not sure why movie makers are currently so fascinated with this theme.


Welcome to Marwen, movie review

I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect when I headed to the theater to see “Welcome to Marwen.” The trailers didn’t make it very clear what kind of film this was going to be. So let me lay it out for those who are also wondering.

The main character enjoys wearing women’s shoes. He is straight, this is made clear nearly to the point of perversion. He collects women’s shoes and enjoys them, especially if they have a high heel. He got drunk one night and made some comments about it in a bar, this earned him an ass beating by a group that thought he was weird and deserved to die or something. He suffered a lot of physical and mental damage from the attack. All of his memories prior to the event are gone, and weirdly we don’t hear of any family reaching out to him. So he’s just completely alone. He used to be an artist, based off some comics he found in his house. But he can’t draw anymore, so he uses dolls and takes photos of them. But his relationship with the dolls is taken to an excessive degree. He can’t leave the house without them. And on a creepy note, each doll is based on a person he knows in real life.

I’m not sure why so many people are okay with this. It does make for a few a funny moments, like, “What happened to my doll’s top?” An example of the man’s pervert nature, I guess this unavoidable when its a grown man playing with dolls, their clothes are gonna come off. Its pretty easy to predict the plot, once you figure out what’s actually going on.

The movie does jerk you around emotionally, and it is easy to root for the main character, despite his flaws. Its a nice touch that this is based on real life events. The animation of the dolls is done very well, and overall this is an okay movie. But, its odd enough that I doubt it will do well. I can’t really think of an audience this film is well suited for. Like, if you enjoyed such-and-such type movies, then you’ll love this, cause this is really in a realm all its own. Its a war movie, a guy recovering from being attacked, dealing with drug addiction, playing with dolls, its all over the place. And its a lot darker than most comedies are willing to go.

So overall, see it at your own risk. It’ll be hit or miss if you’ll enjoy it.


Bumblebee-transformers movie review

I was a huge fan of the first transformers movie. I’ll admit, I like Shia LaBeouf in general, so I was bias. I loved him as a child actor on Nickelodeon. The franchise started going downhill once he left the movies. But this latest installment, Bumblebee, brought the series to a new low.

The movie started with an opening scene that didn’t contain a single bit of original dialogue. Everyone had a stereotype to fulfill and was practically told, “don’t be original.” It all felt very rehearsed. I tried to tell myself, it was because the writers were trying to stay true to the cartoon. That would explain why the robots were speaking English and looked like cars from Earth, even though they had yet to visit Earth, I mean, the robots even had faces and mouths. Why? They are robots. That should have all came later when they were attempting to relate to humans and make us more comfortable with them.

And then, the age old question. Why would humans, ANY HUMAN, trust a creature that proclaims itself to be a Decepticon. Plus, they kept speaking to each other in English, having private conversations IN FRONT OF HUMANS and saying things like, “can I kill them?” But then the humans were like, it’s cool, we’ll trust them. Why would the robots not speak in a different language? Or speak via electronic radio waves or something?

Again, all of that I could forgive, because the movie is trying to be like the cartoon. But then, the plot… it felt like the writers were trying to recreate the first transformers movie. Bumblebee is found by a young teen… the parents are kept out of the loop, it was like watching the same movie with a gender twist.

And the acting was horrible, by everyone.

So overall, I’d say skip the movie. Even the action scenes weren’t good enough to warrant seeing the movie for them. Kids might enjoy it, and those who want some nostalgia, since that’s really all the writers were aiming for.