I'm going to try to be quick and dirty and not rant too much because I wanted to watch this movie as someone who wasn't distracted by the obvious fuck ups this movie started with, and just observe what they made. See if it was at ALL worth it.
Hint: It wasn't.
AS ALWAYS, SPOILERS AHEAD, SO DON'T READ IT IF YOU DON'T WANT TO KNOW!!! GO WATCH THE FILM FIRST!!!
Alright, I wasn't going to bother watching this film, but a friend had a free ticket, so I was like, "Why not? Maybe I'm being too critical anyway."
Before I get into this film, I'd like to say that I was with a fairly large group of black people. Movie go-ers, fans of the manga, etc. Blerds, if you will. We all had strong feelings about this film going in. Now, being in a crowded movie theater, everyone's talking loudly and whatnot. Someone yelled out, "Prepare to be whitewashed!"
The movie hadn't even started yet, and it wouldn't for another 20 minutes!!
We were immediately singled out, and one of our group took the bullet for it so that the rest of us could watch the film.
The thing is, when the guy came over initially, it was squashed.
Then, one of the Paramount Picture asshats came over further escalating the situation when it didn't need to be escalated further proving that Paramount was really up their ass about the fact that they took this film and smeared their whiteness all over it, and didn't want to be challenged!
Okay, I ranted. I'm sorry, but also, eat a dick. She was in the wrong.
Back to our regularly scheduled program:
Right away, the film is visually breathtaking. The CGI used on this film was AMAZING! It was like, if James Cameron and Disney had a baby and it's name was a shit ton of money. Because that's what was thrown into this film to make it visually appealing.
So much so, that you almost forget that the movie is BORING AS FUCK!!!
The ideals of machines taking over, politicians are dirty as fuck, and the destruction of humanity are lightly touched while the plot of revenge becomes the main focus of this film. And even in that, I can't believe Scarlett Johansson is really interested in this. I understand that her entire body is a machine, but she has a brain, which mean she's capable of complex feels and emotions. None of which she really bothers to get into throughout this fucking film!
And, besides the fact that I was irritated as shit about her being the main character, I was also disturbed by the fact that her past was constantly hidden in plain sight. You never get to see what she looked like before, furthering the disappearance of the Japanese woman she once was while living in the middle of futuristic Japan surrounded by Japanese people.
And, though they brought some parts of the animated film into this, it was clunky at best. The moment at the end when Saito was supposed to save her, not her saving Kuze (played by Michael Pitt by the way. You telling me there wasn't one Japanese shell out there? Or as they "perfected" this shit, they thought white was right?), it's another form of erasure IMHO. I think I saw Saito a handful of times! It was unfortunate.
Juliette Binoche got more screen time getting shot through the glass than he did!
Oh, and also, if you're going to have subtitles on an IMAX film, make sure their not cut off at the bottom of the damn screen!
I'll give this film 4 out of 10 because after you're done being dazzled by it's pretty colors, it all just seems to fall flat.
If you don't care about any of that, go check it out in theaters nationwide March 31st, 2017.
OH! I forgot to mention something. HER NAME IS NOT MAJOR!!!!
She is A MAJOR. It's a fucking rank, not her name. Like, seriously? Even when she had the opportunity to say her name, she called herself Major. Like, bitch whet?
As we say goodbye to James Logan Wolverine Howlett, I have to say, I'm filled with mixed emotions. On the one hand, I am sad that Hugh Jackman is hanging up his claws for good, but on the other, I have to say:
It's about fucking time!
I mean, this dude has been Wolverine for 17 fucking years! That's a feat! But also, Hugh Jackman needs to be able to relax. He gets anymore swole, I'm afraid he might pop.
Here's a glimpse of Wolverine chronologically. I feel like he's kept up pretty well considering he was nearly 200 years old!!!
I mean, if you're going by the fact that Wolverine was what, 10-ish in 1845 and died in 2029??
He looked AMAZING!
(dismiss the 2017 on the last photo)
As you know, or should know, there will be spoilers, so if you don't want those, don't continue to read.
I loved this film! I was worried about the third act as these superhero movies tend to fall flat when it comes to telling a nicely rounded story.
Except you DC, you suck from the very beginning.
But with movies like 'The Last Stand' and 'Apocalypse,' I was more than a little hesitant to go out and see this.
What started to give me hope was the R rating they received to tell this story. Let's be honest, Wolverine is not the mutant you bring home to meet your mother.
Without hope or expectation, I saw it.
And I was not disappointed.
The movie takes place in 2029 and mutants are all but extinct at this point as no new mutants have been reproduced for 25 years.
We find Old Man Logan and a senile Professor X who's suffering from a mental degenerative condition living out their days in isolation with the mutant tracker Caliban. Logan makes money to care for them by being a limo driver.
Things are mumbling along until a woman named Gabriela pleads for him to help her and an 11-year-old girl Laura to safety. Oh, and she worked for Alkali-Transigen corporation.
You know, the fucking bad people!!!!
Initially, Logan doesn't see the point, but that little voice inside of him finally decides to say, "Don't be a dick all your life!"
Also, after killing Gabriela, the bad guys raid his compound risking the life of him and the professor, so he kinda didn't have a choice.
Unfortunately, they get Caliban which doesn't make their little road trip easy.
Throughout the film, you quickly find out that the AT corp(Alkali-Trasigen Corporation) was taking mutant DNA and breeding little mutant weapons. Oh, and that 11-year-old Laura is his biological DAUGHTER!
For Logan, this trip is made extraordinarily difficult because of his lack of healing ability due to age which is even more hindered by the adamantium poisoning he's succumbing to. That with trying to keep the Professor from killing everyone around him with seizures he gets due to his own aging issues.
Having Hugh Jackman and Sir Patrick Stewart reprise their roles one last time, and having them do it together made for a fantastic ride. The paternal feelings Logan felt towards the Professor continue in this film, though I think little Logan (Laura) takes to those feelings much easier than her curmudgeonly father.
Hugh also had to take on himself via yet another failed mutant project X-24. A Wolverine genetic copy with none of Logan's sensibility, but all the rage. A trained killdabeast with a depleted healing power. Even with that, he is quite the adversary.
Logan spends a lot of the movie trying to escape his animalistic side, but is forced to face it one last time to save what little humanity he has left in him.
This last film takes him through his greatest internal journey, I think, of finally opening his heart and living, even though he's on the brink of death at this point. The professor dies still trying to instill this in him all these years later. *dry sobs*
Even though this movie centers around Logan and Professor X, there were no small roles.
Daphne Keen acted her little ass off! Even without words, she was incredible to watch. You're immediately sucked in and want to know what's so special about this little girl. You want to see her thrive, and you want to see her make the right decisions, but you also want to see her kick ass! She earns her right to live even though she was made in a lab.
And then there was Boyd Holbrook the 2nd in command. A cyborg named Pierce who was fucking up Logan's happy place, bringing along his shitty Reavers to crash the party!
And then there was the big bad boogie man Richard E. Grant who played Dr. Zander Rice. A man who was single-handedly responsible for Logan's little bundle of scissor fingered joy, and the depletion of mutants overall.
Oh, and the subsequent death of both Professor X and Logan.
Fuck you man, you suck!!!
Even Stephen Merchant as Caliban! He was a choice I would've never thought of, but even him!
Like with all superhero films, the bad guys gets theirs because Logan goes feral on them bitches!!!
As do the wee little mutant baby rejects before they head off to Canada to start anew, maybe even bringing the mutant population back from extinction... at some point, when they're of consenting age.
I have to say, my allergies were acting up something AWFUL! I had a runny nose and eyes. It was terrible.
*So many tears.*
Sure, the ending opens up for all sorts of X-men sequals, franchise setups, whatever. But one thing's for certain:
There will never be another Wolverine like Hugh Jackman. Or a Professor like Sir Pat Stew.
And so, in the loving words of our favorite mutant, I leave you with this:
I agree with most of the reviews in regards to this film. While watching it, it was fun, but soon afterwards, I wondered what the point is.
It began making it's rounds back in 2014, and has done fairly well for itself finding a home in the obscurity files of Netflix. Honestly, not a bad way to go for a small film.
Unfortunately, that's as big as a splash as I've got for it.
You're distracted by great performances done by Marisa Tomei and Sam Rockwell, but then you're left with one question. Why? I believe Sam Rockwell to always pull out a solid performance (The Poltergeist remake excluded), the problem was, this movie wasn't even about him! The two main characters, Raphael (Ivan Martin) and Dominic (Michael Godere) are immediately outdone by their co-stars and that's a shame, because I was hoping they'd be just as interesting perhaps rising to the occasion. Unfortunately, they fall into obscurity against their counterparts, sort of like this film. The movie is supposed to center around these two actors, but I found that I was INFINITELY more interested in the love triangle that was plopped right in the middle there. The B story quickly became the A story, and then it ended.
For a film that's only about 80 minutes long, do yourself a favor and get to the point.
If you'd like a few chuckles, feel free to check it out on Netflix.
When Trainspotting came out in 1996, I was 9... so needless to say, I was late to get on the bandwagon, but regardless, when I did get to see it, none of my art school training prepared me to be as blown away as I was.
Even know, some twenty or so years later, the original still carries plenty of clout and has continued to steer me away from drug use.
Now with the release of the sequel, people are worried that too much time has passed, that we're living off our laurels, and we're getting lazy in film making.
In regards to this film, I have this to say to those naysayers:
I got the chance to see an early screening of this film, and I admit, I was nervous. Excited, but incredibly nervous. I'd refreshed myself by watching the original a few weeks before, and I'm glad I did because this film was fantastic!!!
From the very first scene, you're right back in the world of the four main characters, Renton (Ewan McGregor), Sick Boy, (Jonny Lee Miller), Begbie (Robert Carlyle), and Spud (Ewen Bremner). At first, it looks like everyone's had a chance to live except for Begbie who was still in prison, and Spud who seemed stuck in a revolving world of drug addiction. But quickly, you see that they've all been stuck still trying to make it as adults in one way or another
The movie was full on with the familiar outer body shots and nostalgia without being redundant. You're allowed to live in the past with the characters all the while rooting for them to get out of the twenty year funk they seemed to have been living in.
Even the few new characters served their purpose without it being overwhelming.
Nothing was forgotten, not even Tommy. (May he rest).
For me though, Spud was the character I was rooting for the most. Every time Ewen Bremner has graced a screen I've watched, I am on the edge of my seat and Spud is no different.
Even the way that Renton finds him in the start of this film automatically makes you want to reach in screen and give Spud a hug. He's hopeless and directionless, but you still want to do everything in your power to help him because all he wants is to stay clean, and have his friends.
That's not asking for a lot is it?
He wants to be happy, and make those around him happy. I love Spud. I love Ewen. He's incredibly enigmatic and wonderful to watch. I can't explain it further. It just is.
Let it be.
The rest of the band is also on point bringing these interesting character arcs full circle and forever changed. Even Begbie in traditional Begbie fashion.
One thing I will say, if you're an American, you may want subtitles. Even after 20 years, it still takes a while to figure out what they're saying.
I will spend my money to go see it again on the 17th of March and I suggest you do the same!!!
That's all for the Quick & Dirty! I'll see again you next Sunday!
Check out the blog next Sunday for reviews on LOGAN, GET OUT, AND SONG TO SONG
Can y'all believe it! I'm crazy excited that we're here. I know 2016 sucked for a lot of people. They even compared it to Voldemort.
I speak his name! He dead!
But, for me, it was a great building block into new, better habits, blogging, and writing. I come into 2017 haven eaten my black-eyed peas ready to start fresh.
See, smilng faces!!
Anywho, I had been wrestling all week about a best and worst of 2016.
With honorable mention going to Moonlight, Fences, and The Handmaiden, I realized there's enough white people patting the backs of the other white people and you can find that information anywhere, hell, everywhere else.
Literally, everywhere else.
THIS IS THE MOVIE YOU NEED TO BE FOCUSING ON:
This movie is starting the new year off RIGHT!
This untold story about the black women who put our NASA program on the map is something EVERYONE needs to see, because it's not a movie just for black people. It's a movie about America's history! It wasn't just about black and white. It was about making HISTORY!
And yes, I've already written a review about it, but oh well. Get over it. Or read it in full here.
This movie is wonderfully made, wonderfully cast, and beautifully presented. I've already seen it twice and have plans to see it again!
Hidden Figures is now in theatres everywhere, so get your butt in a seat and go see it!
There was a line in Iron Man 2 where Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) says, "Dead for almost 20 years, you're still taking me to school."
The Harry Potter phenomenon is far from dead, but this film is like being taken to task all over again as you're introduced to an entirely different wizarding world and some of the most interesting fantastic beasts seen to date!
Bad pun, I know.
The movie takes place in 1920's New York were Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) comes to initially find a creature only to find that breading magical creatures is illegal in the united states.
Too bad he's got an unassuming leather case full of them, and those creatures cause quite a bit of mischief!
Tina (Katherine Waterston) finds Newt having a helluva time trying to contain them and does her best to maintain order, but she's got her own troubles to deal with which end up causing both her and Newt a world of trouble which includes her sister Queenie (Alison Sudol) and a no-maj named Kowalski (Dan Fogler).
On top of that, relations between the no-Majs (non-magical folk) and wizards are strained as there is a dark force known as an obscurius that's attached to poor Credence (Ezra Miller) tearing through the streets with no mercy for the innocent. It attracts the likes of Graves (Colin Farrell) but you're not really sure if that's a good or bad thing.
Hint, it ain't good.
If that wasn't enough, Grendelwald (super secret person that rhymes with Donny Jepp) has been quietly building his army and a crapload of fear while still being nowhere to be found.
There is a lot going on in this film, but like the Harry Potter books of days past, it's nearly seemless. J.K. Rowling actually wrote the scipt for this film, and it shows as this is her world. She has lived in this life for longer than most of us can comprehend, and it's displayed brilliantly on the screen.
Eddie Redmayne does a fantastic job bringing Newt to life. A man who enjoys his creatures to human interaction, he is a prime example that not all Hufflepuffs are timid as he bravely moves throughout this world to try and help Tina put New York back together as well as help a child before an obscurial takes their life.
All the characters were great, but were nothing compared to the creatures who inhabited the place. The niffler was probably my favorite next to the Erumpent who was... in season.
I couldn't take my eyes off the screen from beginning to end, and lucky for us, there will be four more movies culminating in the battle of Grendelwald, Albus, and Aberforth which ends up killing their sister Ariana.
How friggin' cool is that!!!!
I'm geeking. You all have no idea.
J.K. has a fantastic eye for detail which can only come from having written in this world for as long as she has. I can't wait to see what comes next in these films as she is writing them as well.
I also hope they can keep David Yates on as a director. He directed the last four Harry Potter films, and they were the most bad ass ones of the entire series.
Also, my patronus is a stag and I'm in Ravenclaw. What house are you in?
Catch Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in a theater near you. I doubt it's going anywhere anytime soon. This movie is the beez knees!!
I was going to write this long glowing review going into great detail about how amazing this film is.
And I did to a certain extent.
But I didn't add any spoilers because this film is so amazing that I want you to experience the magic for yourselves.
Hidden Figures is a film about 3 black female mathematicians.
Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson played by Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, and Janelle Monae.
These brilliant women work for NASA and were integral in the space race against Russia getting John Glenn played by Glen Powell into orbit.
The movie is a well rounded telling allowing you to see them as complete human beings even if those around them didn't.
Set in the heart of the civil rights movement, these women were labelled computers for their ability to calculate large numbers quickly and in their heads. At the same time, NASA is about to employ the use of IBM computers.
Needless to say, the women are dealing plenty along with being married, having children, and being role models to them and those around them.
One of the many brilliant things about this film is that these women exist in troubling times without it having to be triggering. You were allowed to see people fighting in different ways without having to see destroyed dejected black bodies splayed across your screen.
That may not seem like an important aspect of a movie like this, but it truly is.
And y'all, when I say there was so much black love in this film!
From friendships to relationships, to family. There were more than a few times where... some dust got in my eyes.
That's right. Dust. So shut up.
The movie also stars Kirsten Dunst, Kevin Costner, and Jim Parsons. Perfectly acted in their roles, but all different representations of white bias and showing how white supremacy works.
Kirsten's character Vivian Michael was the quintessential white feminist. She may not call you the N-word outright, but her bias showed in every word and action she had on that screen.
Jim Parsons played Paul Stafford. The straight white male who was used to being the smartest man in the room until Taraji (Katherine Johnson) came along and made him realize what he knew about math could fit on the tip of her pinky finger.
Kevin Costner was Al Harrison. A man who never had to see the injustices played out in his life, therefore, never had reason to think the world was that bad. (This played out beautifully in a scene about bathrooms.)
The movie does a great job with these characters for many reasons. One, these are the kinds of people we deal with all day every day. It's not the cloaked and hooded ones screaming white power that are most fearsome. It's those that get up every day and believe themselves to be decent hardworking Americans, but can rationalize why we have the need for a coloreds only bathroom.
And two, the way these women handled themselves with dignity without having to be cowardly or small or the angry black woman trope was inspiring.
Everything from the cinematography to the sound, from the headliners, to the "smallest" extra was brilliant.
One things that really stood out for me were the colors! So beautiful and bright and they managed to make EVERYONE, black or white look amazing on screen.
Allison Schroeder and Theodore Melfi put together a fantastic screenplay that Melfi directed beautifully on screen.
I walked away more inspired than I've ever been. This film may have been about mathematicians, but you can put that same tenacity and love towards any profession and understand what it's like to hit the glass ceiling when the odds are never in your favor.
As an African American woman who's constantly had to struggle with intersectionality and people labeling me even before uttering a word to me, this film was the perfect things to see; especially in these times.
The movie is based on a book by the same name that was written but Margot Lee Shetterly. I hadn't read it yet, but I have to tell you, after watching this film, it's made the short list.
The film Hidden Figures opens nationwide on January 6th, 2017. Get your butts out there and watch. this. film!!!! You will regret it if you don't!
This review will have lots of cursing in it. So, I wanted to warn you. Because I'm not changing it. Also, it's a little shorter than my normal reviews.
NOW THAT I'VE WARNED YOU ABOUT MY FOUL MOUTH...
LET'S DO THIS!
Man, if someone had told me that there'd be a chance that a man who was basically a 5'2 Hershey chocolate drop would become one of the highest paid comics in the world.
I would've told you to go fuck yourself.
But man, Kevin Hart is hilarious!
This little dude is my male counterpart. He's loud, animated, funny as hell, and doesn't give a shit that you think he's short. He owns it.
Kevin Hart delivers another amazing performance, so there's nothing different to expect in 'What Now?'
Except the part between him and Don Cheadle. It wasn't so much different as it was something I wish I could've rewound one million times.
Hell, even Halle Berry won't be getting a razzie in this one.
It was a familiar Kevin Hart that we all know and love, but there are some great new jokes in there as well.
Yes mutha fucka!
Catch it before it leaves the big screen which is going to be pretty soon. Personally, I'm excited for when this comes out on Blu Ray/DVD.
The extras are going to be ridiculous.
On a completely different note.
If you were curious, the extended cut of Suicide Squad doesn't make it suck ass any less.
Before you call me crazy, here me out.
This is definitely your typical action movie. It's got guns, quips, explosions, and a sexy peace of meat who also happens to be the lead.
*Let's all take a moment to swoon for Idris Elba and his fake American accent*
But the story kind of sparks some interesting thoughts considering all the strife we've been going through in the United States over the last decade.
The film takes place in Paris where a CIA agent is brought in by Jessica Chastain doppleganger Kelly Reilly as a last chance.
He's tough, uncooperative, a pain in the ass, but he gets results!!! He's brought in as a plot to terrorize the city looms right before Bastille Day.
*Think 4th of July for the French*
At the same time, a spunky pick pocket Richard Madden (who's also not American) gets in over his head when he steals a bag from a potsie containing a bomb inadvertently killing four people.
Now he's in the CIA's asshairs and must be dealt with!
It gets juicy to me when we look at how the "terrorists" go about their plan, taking the disparities of the people and using them to their advantage because (SPOILER ALERT)
*No seriously, spoiler*
These fuckers are cops!
They use the people as a distraction to follow through on a get rich and get the fuck out scheme that inevitably backfires, and everyone dies.
I enjoyed the film. I like explosions, I like Idris in a tight shirt running around like Bruce Willis, I like people from other countries putting on nondescript American accents and killing it, I like to see the bad guys go down, but it does make me think, what is the government feeding us to fuel the tension of the American people???
The Take (or Bastille Day for International audiences) comes out November 18th. Check it out in a theater near you.
AS we speak of Veterans, we're often inundated with photos and films of men who come back forever changed. Some make it, and some don't. It's rare that we get the opportunity to talk about women who have gone out and risked their lives.
They're not immune to PTS and unfortunately, are even less likelier to report it. Women are often expected to come back home and fill their "womanly" roll as a spouse, mother, provider, etc. They don't get the time to grieve.
That's why, when I heard about this film, I knew I had to see it.
It did not disappoint.
Kate Knowlin plays a female veteran who comes home from war a mere shell of the person she was before she left. When home feels to claustrophobic, she escapes to a camp she remembers going to as a young girl hoping to get some clarity there.
And maybe find a better off version of herself before it all went tits up.
This film does an incredibly job of allowing you to take this ride with the main character without pounding it in your head that it's about PTS and that the VA is a big pile of crap that needs to get it's head out of its ass to help Veterans.
There's a reason there are nearly 22 suicides a day.
Kate does an amazing job of bringing this character to life both physically and emotionally.
Fun Fact: She spent three months training before the film to get in incredible shape to play this character, and it shows on screen.
And even though she solidly carries this movie on those ridiculously tones shoulders, the supporting cast does not disappoint. One of those is Dot played by a wonderfully brilliant character actress named Rusty Schwimmer. She's a spunky camp director who immediately takes to the Sergeant and wants to help her as much as she can.
Art, one of the retreat chaplains is a bright spot in a very serious film. Every time Rene Auberjonois graces the screen, you can't help but smile.
The Fisherman is her... would we call him love interest? I think he's more of a mirror in a sense. The other side of recovery in a lot of ways played calmly and just enough by Tom Lipinski.
Directed by Reme Auberjonois, the film is a success because it was a human story with much bigger implications that plague our nation. Feeling alone while trying to cope is a universal problem we've all been through. You can put any struggle with this film, and still understand what she's going through.
As a Veteran, this film is an A+ as it gets down to the nuance that makes a Marine a Marine. A lot of films don't bother.
Blood Stripe is hitting the film festival circuit at the moment. The next place to catch it as the Key West Film Festival. Don't miss out!
Reviewing movies. I tried to go to once a week, but I think it's best if I post whenever. Right?