Monthly Archives: May 2017
Pirates freaking FIVE has hit theaters…..So I figure…..Let’s take this weekend to review some actual good looking pirates movies……Ok not ALL of them were good but most were certainly better looking than this one.
Plot: Capt. Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) arrives at Port Royal in the Caribbean without a ship or crew. His timing is inopportune, however, because later that evening the town is besieged by a pirate ship. The pirates kidnap the governor’s daughter, Elizabeth (Keira Knightley), who’s in possession of a valuable coin that is linked to a curse that has transformed the pirates into the undead. A gallant blacksmith (Orlando Bloom) in love with Elizabeth allies with Sparrow in pursuit of the pirates.
- The ACTION
- I need to get this out of the way first off; the action in these Pirates movies is OUTSTANDING. In all 4 (even though the fourth is the worst) they’re cool to watch, their epic when they need to be, and it feels like you’re THERE watching these fights go down-You’re on the Interceptor when it faces the Pearl, you’re in the cave fighting with Will Turner and Jack Sparrow against Barbossa and his crew, you’re on the Dauntless facing cursed skeletal pirates, you can’t help but be amazed at some of the stunts Jack pulls off-escaping by way of using a crane, blocking bullets like he’s freaking Wonder Woman with his cuffs, him dueling with Will in the armory it’s all just really cool, really awesome action. They nailed it in this movie-and in the later movies as well.
- The UNIVERSE
- The entire world of “Pirates of the Caribbean” is just cool shit. It’s set in the mid to late 1700s, and it really feels like that era-the sets, costumes, and makeup work do a good job at making this era of human history come to life. The world just seems like a fun, lively adventurous place to be in.
- The MUSIC
- I would be ashamed if I forgot to mention how FREAKING AMAZING the music here is. German Composer Klaus Badelt is the one who composed the score for this movie and it’s so epic-I bought it when it first came out and I still have it to this day; just now on my iTunes and cell phone instead of a CD. He composed the epic theme “He’s a Pirate” which has been used and remade for the next films-which is great you don’t just get a new theme for each film the theme for the first should be used again and again-I’m looking at you “Avengers”. It’s epic, dramatic, it does a really good job of getting you in whatever mood you need to depending on the scene you’re watching.
- The STORY
- It’s a pretty simple story-and that’s a plus for the movies. The other films got needlessly more complex and more convoluted. Here, pirates need to lift a curse, and some innocents get caught in the crossfire. Simple. Good call on making the first movie a simple swashbuckling adventure Disney. Because its’ the one people remember the most.
- The CHARACTERS
- The characters-Mostly Will, Jack, and Elizabeth, are all fun and memorable. It’s easy to see where Depp got type cast unfortuntely, but seeing him as Jack here, it just brings a smile to your face-he’s not overused, he’s not some bumbling idiot-he’s smart, a fast talker, clever, and funny. Will played by Orlando Bloom (who I think has a bad rep here for no reason) is also a charming character and Elizabeth is a great female lead-she fights back, she’s smart in pirate lore, she knows how to defend herself-everything you’d want in a female lead. The minor characters such as Barbossa the villain is fun, and Norrington and Governor Swan are alright as well. But the trio leads are amazing.
- The PACING
- The only real downside to this movie, is the pacing. In some scenes it drags, to the point where you can’t help but want to fast forward to the awesome fight sequences. It’s not horrendous, but it needs to be addressed.
- The CGI
- This movie was released in 2003, with preproduction taking place of course a few years beforehand. So, of course, the computer generated imagery (CGI) isn’t going to really hold up-in terms of the explosions (back before Bay made them less cool) and the skeletons (while they look cool) are noticeably CGI. Barbossa looks good still, as does Jack’s cursed form, but you do notice the CGI now compared to back when it first came out.
“Curse of the Black Pearl” is a simple good time. The action is fun, the characters memorable, the soundtrack FREAKING awesome, and the plot is easy to follow. Some of the pacing is a bit off, and the CGI wonky, but other than that, it’s just an all around kickass time. If you’re looking for the next Lord of the Rings or Star Wars, this isn’t it, no matter how much Disney wanted it to be those things. But….hey you’re having a good ass time with AWESOME pirates. I’ll take that.
“Curse of the Black Pearl” gets a 4.5/5 from me-it’s simple, but it works; it’s a swashbuckling good time if you know what you’re getting into. It’s certainly a pirate’s life for me.
If you’re looking for some more praise for this movie….look elsewhere. I was seriously disappointed by this film…but is it as bad as some make it out to be?
Plot: When the crew of the colonist ship Covenant receives a rogue transmission from some random planet that looks better to colonize, they decide to go check it out…And from there we have our Alien movie.
- The CINEMATOGRAPHY/AESTHETICS
- Ridley Scott is like Zach Snyder…they both know how to make movies look….GORGEOUS. The story though…I’ll get to that. The world they go to looks fantastic, very Earth like yet eerily alien at the same time. The wide sweeping shots, some of the angles they get, the lighting, it’s very reminiscent of the first Alien film. Down to the title appearing with one piece at a time-like Prometheus and Alien.
- The SOUNDTRACK
- Jed Kurzel did the soundtrack for this film, and he needs all sorts of props. I hope he gets more work in the future. Scott should take him on in the inevitable third prequel movie…whee.
- The ALIEN DESIGNS
- H R Giger’s alien designs are among the most iconic in all of Sci-Fi; it’s almost a shame nothing really comes close in terms of alien designs. The designs here LOOK cool-but the CGI is complete shit. Even with the ONE Xenomorph (yeah remember the posters and trailers we just get one) he was all CGI and it was just very distracting. They looked cool, but again….poor CGI.
- The MICHAEL FASSBENDER
- Without giving too much away, it’s clear Scott has a complete hardon for Fassbender…Who doesn’t he’s hot, a great actor, whew his accent….damn. I’d love to meet the man someday-he’s FANTASTIC in everything he’s in because he gives it his all-here he plays Walter an Android with the Covenant crew, AND David and…yeah Imma stop right there. Oh and Katherine Waterston was great too-the only intelligent crew member.
- The PACING
- The pacing isn’t good but it isn’t BAD either…It just….it’s meh. This whole movie there’s 15 crew members so you know folks are going to be SLAUGHTERED. So the whole time it just drags, and you don’t care about the crew-oh ho…they’re next. But the pacing…It’s just….eh.
- The PLOT
- The plot….It completely screws up Prometheus and Alien-it messed with the lore completely and you DON’T. BUY. FOR A MINUTE. What they sell in the third act with David. I’ll not spoil anything, but it’s also completely predictable as soon as they land on this alien world completely going of course because human curiosity SUCKS. The whole movie felt like one big wasted detour.
- The THIRD ACT
- Again without giving too much away-third act with a big reveal…the revelation sucks you don’t buy it- and the ending is REALLY predictable. And the answers you DO get, are…they’re pretty shit. Pretty shit. Yep. With “Star Wars the Force Awakens”, you get SOME answers, and more questions-but the answers you DO get are satisfactory. The questions make you WANT more-here….Nope. Nnno. NO. Bad. Bad writers. Shame on you………………….REALLY? Ugh.
- The ENDING
- Ending sucked. Nothing more to say-it just sucked. It FREAKING SUCKED.
- The CREW OF THE COVENANT
- BOY could these people give the crew of Prometheus a run for their money on stupidity. If Ripley were part of this crew she’d SMACK THEM ALL ON THEIR EARS. First, as seen in the trailer, they go explore the ALIEN. WORLD with no space suits. “Oh it’s SOOO similar to Earth I’m sure it’s fine”. It’s fine. Fine. Also when it comes to protocol….oof. And personal common sense. Yikes. Ouch. Yeah they are SO stupid.
- The CHARACTERIZATION
- …..There’s literally NONE. OF. IT. The god damn ROBOT Walter has more of a character than the entire Covenant crew combined. He was great I liked Walter. In Alien the scenes where they’re jabbing at each other back and forth, really worried for their crewmate, you FEEL like they actually care about each other. Here? You get the feeling of “oh sure go down those stairs…Can’t WAIT. So sad to see Scott use BAD horror tropes when he created “Alien”.
If you liked the elements of Prometheus with creator vs creation, those elements, you’ll like here. But….Don’t go in expecting a “Prometheus sequel”; you won’t be fully satisfied. And don’t go in thinking it’s a full on “Alien” prequel….you won’t be fully satisfied. The answers we DO get, aren’t satisfactory. The crew are moronic and you only like Walter, and Daniels. The pacing makes the movie a bore, the tropes are horrific, the deaths are predictable, the ending predictable, the writing atrocious at times…It’s a shame because this IS the same man who created the “Alien” universe we know from “Alien”. If you liked “Prometheus” you might like this well enough. If you go in thinking “yes Xenomorph shit”….just don’t go in with that mindset.
“Alien Covenant” gets a 2.5/5 – Some elements are great….But it leaves a lot to be desired. Whole lot.
What did you think of “Alien: Covenant” and what’s your favorite Ridley Scott movie? Let me know below.
In 2012, we had a few good BIG summer movies to be excited about….The Amazing Spider-Man reboot, The Dark Knight Rises, Prometheus, and Avengers. The aspect of a “prequel” or “spin off” to the Aliens franchise got people real stoked. So with Alien Covenant coming out this weekend I figure why not take the time to take a look at one of the most polarizing movies out there….So let’s get to it.
- The CAST
- While the acting varies from person to person, the cast is phenomenal. We have Noomi Rapace as Dr. Shaw, Michael Fassbender as David 8 the android, Charlize Theron as Meredith Vickers, Idris Elba as Janek the captain of Prometheus, among many others. Those names that I listed they brought the A-game, the rest of the crew deliver ok performances; props go to Fassbender and Rapace in particular they were fantastic.
- The STORY
- The story is incredibly….fascinating. It’s set at a nice pace that doesn’t QUITE drag, and it’s just an interesting premise-a group of human beings go out to a planet where they believe our ancestors came from and….Big no no. It’s a good show of “should we find out the reason for our existence”? Is there a God that created us or were we just a bluff that simply HAPPENED? Should we ever look for those answers and would we like the answers we found? It gives off a lot of questions…and not in that bad pseudo-science kind of way by way of like a Roland Emmerich movie. It actually does make you think about humanity and our place in the universe. I have to give the movie props for having an incredibly intriguing story.
- The ACTING
- I was really debating on putting this in the “Good” or “meh” category, but I’m going to put it in the good because of two people-Fassbender and Noomi. The rest of the crew do a good enough job, but I would be remiss if I did not mention how powerful those two were together. The guy who played Dr. Holloway he was good, and Charlize Theron was good as well, because it’s Charlize Theron sometimes I don’t think she knows she’s being filmed and she’s just this naturally calm cool collected human being all the time-makes for a good villain role. Or commander.
- The AESTHETICS
- The movie looks FANTASTIC. From wide sweeping shots (aka The Lord of the Rings shot), to really nice camera angles, the movie just looks fantastic the world they’re on feels really eerie, you get a constant sense of “danger danger” throughout the film. The Engineers looked….eh. Interesting I guess-they look human enough to be our ancestor/creator yet alien enough to be a separate species. Wish they had more screen time.
- The EXECUTION OF STORY
- The story is innately fascinating to me. However, the way they execute it could’ve been better. When they get to the planet where our creators are or were, and the bad things start happening you can’t help but think “wait I’ve seen this before”. It’s the sense of familiarity that comes from the previous Aliens movies-so any disappointment with this movie, stems from tropes started by Alien, & Aliens-ie going into space, man vs alien, alien killing things, trying to set up good tension through this movie you’re like “I feel like I’ve been here before what’s new?”.
- The MINOR CHARACTERS
- Other than Idris Elba, Charlize Theron, Michael Fassbender and Noomi Rapace, the rest of the crew….you give no shits if they live or die. In fact there’s at one point these two dudes who LEAVE. THE GROUP to head back to the ship Prometheus they come across these little worm like things called hammerpedes…And it’s hissing at them. And they want to poke it and touch it and get near it. I’m sure dear reader you can guess what happens to them. Little things like that really bug me-when a person in a film WITH A PHD does dumb things it just takes me out of the movie.
- The ENDING
- The ending doesn’t bug me too much-of course there has to be a sole survivor in a space horror movie cause why not. However the actual final shot…It sets up for a sequel and I can quite plainly write/say that I understand why people were quite pissed at this ending-it tries to be all “see look Xenomorph Alien prequel” but…when it’s the last shot….for me I can’t help but think if it was shoehorned into the film to make it an Alien prequel for absolute sure.
If there’s something inherently BAD in a movie, I’ll put that in a review, but there’s nothing really BAD in this movie-the only bad/sad thing about it is that it has the weight of the Alien franchise on it’s back, so people expected it to be as “grand” as the first two. When it wasn’t what people expected to be, it split audiences up on what people thought of it-if you like it, people hated you for it. If you didn’t like it, people hated you for it. For me, I’m one of the “in the middle” people-it’s not good, not bad, just really average-and perhaps that’s what’s disappointing about this movie. It’s…just another scifi movie. You can see the potential for greatness in this movie, but it gets lost in the tonal problems of the film-I went back and forth from liking it to hating it, I was confused as to what rating to give it. The story was real fascinating, I always wonder about aliens being out there so I really gravitated toward the story, but when you have a crew of expendables that you know are going to die, and do stupid things, and a really kind of meh ending, with tropes and plot points you’ve seen before thanks to Alien/s you have to see this movie for what it is-a space scifi horror movie. Fassbender was incredible, Noomi was great, Idris was great, the story was great, the movie LOOKED fantastic, but the aftertaste it leaves you with it’s just….confusing.
But for me, I’m going to give Prometheus a 3/5-it’s just another scifi horror for me but I had a good time watching it. Take that as you will. I feel like this review was all over the place.
What is your favorite Ridley Scott movie let me know down below!
In this day an age, everyone is hyper aware of what technology can do-and in part that we could be watched with it. Thanks in large part to a man named Edward Snowden; a whistle-blower that told the whole world that the NSA, and Five Eyes Intelligence Alliance ran global surveillance programs, with the cooperation of telecommunication companies and European governments. For some it shocked them, others they weren’t surprised…but most everyone became hyper aware of what could happen and what could be happening. This movie is quite relevant. But is it any good?
No not really. And here’s why.
There IS a good thing in this movie…It’s the concept. The concept is really good. Buuut it’s almost beating the dead horse as well. We KNOW the dangers of going transparent, yet there are a lot of youtubers who vlog their lives as well-DaddoFive-those motherhuggers who got REAL good lashes from the internet for their “pranks”, JennaMarbles vlogs herself, Philip DeFranco’s wife vlogs her life even going as far as mentioning and talking about her miscarriage and vlogging the birth of their first son Philip DeFranco the Third aka WITTLE TREY!-there’s Shane Dawson who sometimes makes funny parodies of vlogs, Trisha Hershberger makes videos of Naked Truth where she talks about different topics, so when the main character Mae decides to go transparent and vlog her whole life, it’s interesting but also…I kept thinking “there are youtubers I’d rather watch right now”. The concept of “you could be watched at all times ever” is interesting…but we also kind of know that already. It’s a good idea, but poorly educated.
- The ACTING
- It’s VERY flat here-Emma Watson has the POTENTIAL to be GREAT-just like Daniel Radcliffe he’s amazing…well he’s pretty good not amazing. Emma here was REALLY flat. She had no real personality here, and her facial expressions even when excited just didn’t really sell anything either. Even Tom Hanks-though a great actor-was a bit flat here as well. John Boyega of Star Wars The Force Awakens was in it hardly at all, and from what I’ve heard, his character is quite important in the book this is based on. The actor who played Mercer, and Bill Paxton were good-Paxton more so.
- The CHARACTERS
- The characters are all very one note. I would say the most interesting on is Bill Paxton as her father who suffers from MS. He was just kind of quirky, funny, like a normal guy. You could tell that the actors would TRY and make the characters they played interesting but they just weren’t.
- The PACING
- This film is kind of like one big ultimate vlog. When Emma goes transparent and vlogs her life, it goes at a vloggers pace, which can be very slow, very tedious….But if the vlogger is interesting, you don’t notice that. Emma’s character is not interesting. A neat thing though is when the comments all pop up that was interesting.
- The ENDING
- There is no ending. That REALLY pisses me off. Going into a bit of spoiler territory, but let’s just say she pulls a Snowden on this company, claims to want to rebuild it make it something new….And then it just ends. And it ends with these videos of her kyaking and baby being born, and war, and protesters and you are VERY confused on the message it’s trying to send. Yes there should be accountability, but there should be privacy too-a nice balance. This movie does a poor job showing that.
This is one of the shorter reviews I’ve written, but there’s not much to say that everyone else has already said. The concept is genius. The execution is shit. The characters are one note, the relationships you don’t care about, the actors are REALLY, REALLY, flat here. I think Emma has the potential to be BIG, and be REALLY good, but she didn’t show that here. People love her because of Harry Potter, but she was ok in that too. She and Radcliffe had the advantage of being surrounded by incredible actors to bounce off of. Here she has Tom Hanks but when he’s flat too that doesn’t help. Which is a shame because Hanks is an incredible actor so is John Boyega. And Bill Paxton.
The Circle gets a 2.5/5 from me-concept was good, but it’s executed EXTREMELY poorly.