Thursday, 25 July 2013
But then, you see the plot and cast. Nicolas Cage and John Cusack playing Cop & Bad Guy, portraying the true events of Alaska's most notorious Serial Killer, Robert Hansen.
The story focuses on Cindy Paulson (Vanessa Hudgens) a lucky victim who although suffering the torture and horrific rape at the hands of Hansen (Cusack) manages to escape death by taking a chance dash for it while her captors back is turned.
Sounds good doesn't it? If it only it was. Firstly, being a true story your heart will go out to the people portrayed in this film - the sheer level of humiliation, torture and 'hunt' styled death in the wilderness the poor victims succumbed too will make you ensure you lock your doors at night and with a fantastic cast I really hoped the movie would honour the important tale it tells, but for me this wasn't the case.
towards the end though as the trail closes in on Hansen it does get a little punchier but then its a simple arrest and capture with a confession that comes all too easily and then its over.
I may be wrong, this may be critically acclaimed and my negative response may be because it was late, I was tired and the air-cons wasn't on that made me sleepy but for now, until I see it either on TV or a non descriptive streaming app on my iPad, I'll have to go with my first thoughts.
Sunday, 21 July 2013
In this most recent and non-related outing, 5 lads from New Haven (after graduation) in the early 90's set out to complete the Golden Mile, a 12 stint pub crawl ending at The Worlds End. Sadly, first time out they failed to reach then end and now 20 years on, Gary King (Pegg) sets out to rekindle the 'bro'mance of his former years, rally the troops and finally - finish what they couldn't all those years.
For once, Nick Frost plays the straight guy (Andrew Knightley) in this movie in retrospect to PC Danny Butterman & Ed from the first two 'fall-guy' roles in the aforementioned trilogy and the remaining 3 pub crawlers are familiar faces Martin Freeman, Eddie Marsan & Paddy Considine with the lovely Rosamund Pike as Freeman's sister and object of most of the groups desires!
As I said, the laughs in this just didn't come as quickly as I hoped and I wasn't alone, the cinema barely chuckled along with the first 45 minutes of this until about pub number 5 and the beer was flowing freely and that coincided with the remaining plot of the movie - where they discover that the residents of New Haven have all (mostly) been taken over by Robots, comparable to Ken & Barbie dolls (detachable limbs) with blue blood. One thing however that I was impressed with were the numerous fight scenes - our seemingly 5 soft-lads did mash it up with the best of them when it came to the destruction of aliens and Frost stands out as a bit of a bar room brawler, as does Pegg, Considine & Freeman but sadly Marsan spends most of the time cowering in the loo's. Even Pike goes 2-on-1 against a pair of twins in the beer garden and comes out smiling.
So far then, Comedy - 0, Fight Scenes - 1
(If you don't want to know how it ends, skip the next paragraph) !!!Warning - spoiler alert!!!
The next outing for Pegg & Frost together comes in the form of animated 2014 release The Boxtrolls, one for the kiddies so cant really judge but I hope the next movie that's 15+ from them gets me back on side with this legendary comedy duo.
Friday, 19 July 2013
One of Pixar's most successful movies takes a jump back in time to track how Mike Wazowski (Crystal) & James P. Sullivan / Sully (Goodman) hooked up in the first place before coming the record breaking scare team that we were introduced too in 2001.
This movie kicks off early doors, getting introduced to a high school Mike, getting picked on etc as the 'little'un' in class but after a field trip to the scare room at Monsters Inc. and a close encounter behind one of the many 'child' doors that could have ended his young life, his heart becomes set on the only thing he wants to do with the rest of his life - head to M.U, study and become a world class scarer!
The cast are as they were 12 years ago. Crystal & Goodman reprise their roles with ease and new additions of Helen Mirren, Steve Buscemi Alfred Molina and a host of others pick up a number of lovable characters, all complimenting the main two really well.
I am confident that your youngest will love this movie, even though the first outing was released before they were born but shame on you if you haven't got the DVD stashed somewhere in the back of the cabinet.
Wednesday, 17 July 2013
The movie opens with a mysterious hooded figure scouting the 4 magicians in their own environments, leaving each a tarot card with a place, date and time. On arrival - they all meet up for the first time and enter a deserted room where they set off an illusion that sets the pace and tone for the rest of the movie.
Jump 1 year forward and our 4 heroes, now funded by Multi Millionaire Tressler (Caine) are on the Vegas stage and now known as the 'Four Horseman'. After a stunning visual masterpiece that see's them empty a bank of 3 Million Euros from the comfort of their own stage the FBI discover that although a seemingly impossibility - the robbery actually took place and they are soon wanted for the robbery, even though no one can explain how!
Then there are the FBI agent and Interpol colleague (Mark Ruffalo & Melanie Laurent) who are tasked with tracking down the criminals and the whole time, there is another figure, the one with the hood who's seemingly pulling all the strings but the twist - who is it?
This is a fantastically crafted and well thought out movie and luckily for the viewer, every trick is explained (eventually) leaving the audience without the annoying trait of not knowing how things are done - a similar release (albeit on a smaller scale) to the one you get at the end of a Jonathan Creek episode.
What's great about this is there is no delay in it getting started. The opening scene sees the first attack taking place. After a brief narrative explaining about alien life coming from beneath the earths crust via a portal to another galaxy rather than spaceships descending from space, we quickly get to know the 'Kaiju', the name given to this newest form of Monster.
Luckily - the might of an air force manage to kill the beast but with more attacks happening as new creatures come through the portal, aptly located in the middle of the pacific ocean its time for the world to come together and develop like for like sized piloted robots, nicknamed 'Jaegers' with two human pilots, synced both physically and mentally to bring the smack down on these unwanted intruders.
A surprisingly unknown (to me) cast great make up a number of the top sports and although they have all been in other movies, they are not what I would consider 'A-list', albeit for Idris Elba & Ron Pearlman as the stand out recognisable ones.
This movie focuses around the theory that the monsters are getting more and more aggressive and larger in size, ranging from Category 1 up to Category 4 with the threat of an unthinkable Cat 5 monster still to come. With the help of a few nutty scientists who actually manage to sync with the brain of one of the newly defeated Kaiju, they discover that as with Independence Day, their mission is to rid the world of all life and move onto the next. Cat 1-4 monsters are just scouts - there are far bigger things to come!
The special effects are fantastic and there is a fair share of heroism as well as heartache as its obvious that not everyone's going to survive - but as for who lives - well I'll leave that for you to find out yourselves.
I loved it - I knew I would and with a story and idea that takes the Monster capacity of something like Godzilla or Cloverfield and mixes it with the team spirit of Independence Day along with the robots slightly comparable to 80's flick 'Robot Jox' (Google it) this ticked all of my Blockbuster boxes at once.
I couldn't wait to see this movie. The idea of two 'dinosaur' salesman trying to cut it in the new on-line world of Google, pitted against freshman nerds opens so many possibilities. Being of 'that age' myself where I finished college just before the whole Social Networking /Smart phone app lifestyle really took off meant that I missed the boat but if I was to try and get into that work now - in my mind, this is exactly how it would be and I would find myself in the same shoes as our leading duo, Vaughn & Wilson.
The movie starts with two confident and successful sales reps for a watch company. Face-to-face rapport is their only tool and they are the best at what they do - sadly though, with smart phones in every pocket and their over enthusiastic boss (John Goodman) closing down the firm due to 'digital' competition they are left with no other options for two ageing sales reps.
The rest of the movie plays out with a host of inept attempts from our double-act at being 'cool' to fit in with the genius level of IT nerds queueing up for the same job(s). From a hilarious web-cast interviews & silly hats at day 1 to the free canteen and the sleep pods, this movie takes all the rumours and theories behind processes at Google, Facebook and such like and takes a look at what happens when two actual 'real' people have a go - eventually surprising everyone around them.
There is a live Quidditch game, night out at a strip club and a proper 'old school' sales exercise that sees Billy & Nick really come into their own and young or old - this movie will have you either on one side, or the other.
There is a plot however, although to be honest its pretty standard. Steve Carell returns as the one time villain come amazing foster-dad with three of the most adorable girls you could ever wish to meet. As with the 1st movie - the girls are fab. All cutesy and sweet, still sharing the same room in a massive house and each a little bit older but maintaining the childish humour so revered from the first outing. Everyone has their favourite but for me (as with many others) its Agnes that Rocks it!
Firstly - the story was so slow I actually dozed off towards the end but the Minions totally rocked it - as I knew they would. There is a reason they are used for the numerous trailers released since the latter parts of 2012 and they bring a whole level of visible and physical comedy not seen since the slap-stick days.
There's not much else to say, the animation and soundtrack is brilliant and Carell once again proves he's top of the voice overs with his brilliant accents and demeanour that really stand out in this movie and in all honesty - I could watch Gru and the
Final thing - don't rush out at the end, soon after the credits there are the Auditions for 'The Minion's Movie' - if it ever happens - I'll be there!