Movie Review: War for the Planet of the Apes

Apes Together Strong!

War for the Planet of the Apes is the third movie of the Apes series. It’s directed by Matt Reeves and it stars Woody Harrelson, Steve Zahn, Amiah Miller and Andy Serkis as Ceasar.

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After the events of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Ceasar and his people are trying to live a peaceful life in the woods. Unfortunately for Ceasar, a tyrant with a battalion of soldiers is hell bent on eliminating Ceasar and his kind.


The Good

One of the strongest points of War for the Planet of The Apes is it delivered some of the most convincing CG effects this year, the Apes looked incredible. The emotions and expressions showed by the apes are convincing and it empowers the movie tenfold.

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Andy Serkis is also to be given credit, once again delivering a powerful performance as Ceasar. Having followed Ceasar’s story from the Rise of the Planet of the Apes. You can’t feel anything but admiration to his character.

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A surprise hit in the movie is Bad Ape. With the dark gloomy tone of the movie, Bad Ape played by Steve Zahn, delivers some much needed humor which in return alleviates some of the serious tone of the film. The character itself is tragic but Steve Zahn managed to make it lovable.


The Bad

War of the Planet of the Apes will not be an easy watch for some, it has a running time of 2 hours and 20 minutes. There are some scenes that drag and though the scenes themselves are good you can’t help but feel the movie’s length.


Rating

Overall War for the Planet of the Apes delivers a blockbuster with strong characters and more importantly a blockbuster with a deep story. Andy Serkis as Ceasar deserves a recognition for his motion capture performance. Woody Harrelson is also great and gives a strong argument as to why he wants to eradicate the apes and all of it makes a compelling conflict of interest.

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War for the Planet is easily one of the better movies that came up this blockbuster season and if you’re someone who’s followed Ceasar’s story from the beginning you will have a deep appreciation for this movie. War for the Planet of the Apes is highly recommended.

Good Bad 4.8/5
  • Andy Serkis as Ceasar
  • Amazing CG
  • Deep Story
  • Long Running Time
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TV Show Review: 13 Reasons Why

It has to get better. The way we treat each other and look out for each other. It has to get better somehow.

13 Reasons Why is based on a best selling book by Jay Asher. It stars Katherine Langford, Dylan Minnette, Kate Walsh, and more.

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When Clay receives 13 cassette tapes containing a voice recording of his former classmate Hannah, depicting 13 reasons why she killed herself. He stops at nothing to uncover the truth about her suicide and confront those all who’re involved.


The Good

13 Reasons is a very powerful show with a very heavy message. One of the best things about this show is how they handled topics such as suicide, depression, bullying, drug-abuse but more importantly sexual abuse. The show doesn’t dance around the topic but rather tackle it head on.

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The actors/actresses are mostly new names and with the exception of some they are still great overall. This is an impressively acted show and with a heavy theme the cast did an incredible job in their roles.

The best thing in the show however, is it’s story. The way it was told and the way it draws the viewer in, the pacing of it all was well executed. The show tackles some very dark themes but as a viewer it keeps you wanting to know more and makes you look forward to each episode right until the very end.


The Bad

There are very little complaints, and they are minor, but the show becomes inconsistent at times. With one strong issue being brought up with one episode, yet it never fully gets dealt with until three episodes later. Or how some characters, behaved at the beginning of the series despite the situation they’re in.

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The music can become overbearing at times and it becomes distracting. Especially on certain scenes where a viewer should be heavily affected. The music mostly consist of indie songs, unfortunately majority of these didn’t mesh well with as the show progresses.


Rating

Overall 13 Reasons Why is an incredibly powerful show, a viewer has to be in a certain mindset to get through some of the episodes as it gets disturbing. However with the importance of the message they’re telling here, it’ll help to pay full attention to it when watching.

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The cast is incredibly diverse and that’s one thing the show should be credited on as it worked in their favor. It really captured what it feels like when you were in high school.

As mentioned the show tackles topics such as suicide, depression, substance abuse and sexual abuse and unless you’re willing to face the harsh reality about these topics, you shouldn’t watch it. But with a very powerful message it’s encouraged that, apart from kids, everyone should check this out.

Good Bad 4.5/5
  • Powerful Message
  • Amazing Cast
  • Well Told Story
  • Minor Inconsistencies
  • Music

And if you are someone who’s going through similar hardships depicted in this show, you are not alone and there are people willing to help and it’s important to call for help. Likewise if you know someone who’s going through something, be there for that person the smallest things can help a person’s life.

Movie Review: Silence

The price for your glory is their suffering!

Silence is directed by Martin Scorsese it stars Andrew Garfiled, Adam Driver and Liam Neeson.

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Silence tells the story of two Jesuit priests who travels to Japan to find their mentor, Liam Neeson. Unfortunately at a time where Christianity is frowned upon, the priests have to tread lightly in the country in order not to be caught by the inquisitor.


The Good

This movie is gorgeous, from the set location to the muted colours and costume design, the movie looks incredible, with a forty million budget the movie looks like it was filmed with at least a hundred million.

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The performances are also great with very little flaw on the acting. Issei Ogata, steals the show as the inquisitor who was phenomenal in his role. Though credit is also given to both Andrew Garfield and Adam Driver who also gave great performances.

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The story is the main driving point of the film with Scorsese directing, we know we’re gonna get something epic and that’s exactly what we have here. It’s an incredibly gloomy and depressing at times with very little respite from the heavy mood that the film is resonating. However the conflicting ideas is what keeps this movie interesting, the stubbornness of one man led by his fate versus a man who recognizes a move bent on colonialism. It makes a very interesting clash of wills.


The Bad

The movie however has some flaws, one being it’s two hours and forty minute long. The long silent moments in the first act drags this movie out tremendously.

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Another issue is the consistencies with it’s characters, mainly Adam Driver and Andrew Garfield who are meant to be Portuguese priest yet their accents disappears half way through the movie.


Rating

Overall Silence is a harrowing film about faith, colonialism and one person’s vanity. The movie is beautiful to look at and the cinematography is incredible, you wouldn’t expect nothing less with Martin Scorsese and with Silence he delivers.

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Our main characters were also great especially with Andrew Garfield who’s giving it his all. The Japanese characters were given plenty of depth and aren’t treated as background characters but rather factors that plays into the story’s plot. Silence is a memorable movie, with strong performances and a story worth watching.

Good Bad 4/5
  • Great Performances
  • The Inquisitor
  • Unforgettable Story
  • Long Running Time
  • Inconsistent Character Development

Movie Review: Moonlight

At some point, you gotta decide for yourself who you’re going to be. Can’t let nobody make that decision for you.

Moonlight is directed by Barry Jenkins, it stars Alex R. Hibbert, Ashton Sanders, Trevante Rhodes, Mahershala Ali, Naomi Harris and Janelle Monae.

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Moonlight tells the story of Chiron starting from childhood to adulthood and his struggles in a rough Miami neighborhood.


The Good

Moonlight is filled with strong performances. Everyone in this movie was incredible, the three actors that portrayed Chiron were great. Granted they don’t have plenty of dialogues but their facial expressions and their body language, the way they embodied Chiron was phenomenal. The supporting casts were also great from Mahershala Ali to Janelle Monae and Naomi Harris in particular, who gave a memorable performance.

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The story-telling is also great, the movie is divided in three chapters and each tells the story of Chiron at different ages. This worked particularly well as each chapter has a strong connection to the next. The story itself is incredibly powerful though our protagonist is a black gay man, his struggles are universally felt and plenty of people can relate to.


The Bad

The movie moves quite slow, there are plenty of slow moving scenes and plenty of quiet and toned down dialogues. At two hour running time, you can feel the length.


Rating

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Overall Moonlight will not be for everyone, this is a strong drama and this movie demands your whole attention in order for you to fully appreciate the beauty of it. That said, there is a powerful message behind this movie for all people of race and sexuality. With strong performances, phenomenal story-telling and a mature and humanistic story Moonlight is highly recommended.

Good Bad 4/5
  • Strong Performances
  • Incredible Story
  • Cafe Scene
  • Slow Pacing

Movie Review: The Wailing (Goksung)

When a plague is slowly affecting the villagers of a certain town, a police officer is absorbed in the case as his personal life is pulled in especially with the involvement of his daughter.


The Good

The movie had everything a horror movie should have, a competent story that pulls you right in. Tons of horrific images that will haunt you days after you’ve seen the movie. The right amount of humour to keep you at ease and brilliant performances from the actors and actresses involved.

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The story and the mythology involved in this movie is fascinating. They are integrated really well and it makes up for it’s long running time. You don’t feel that the movie is too long because you are too absorbed in what’s going on in the screen.

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Your actors/actresses are incredible, both Jong-Goo and Jun Kunimura gave an impressive performances. The down to earth nature of Jong-Goo’s character lets you empathize with him while the eerie and mysterious Jun Kunimura gives you goosebumps the moment he’s introduced on the screen.


The Bad

The major flaw with this film is it’s third act, though it’s still following the pace of the movie, there are moments that are filled with extreme confusion. Several events aren’t explained and though it is the director’s intention to leave you confused at certain scenes, it didn’t help especially with everything that’s going on in the movie.


Rating

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Overall Goksung is easily one of the best horror movies this year, the story is incredibly deep with layers and the execution is masterful. It’s subtle and haunting scares will leave you breathless and terrified yet, you still can’t take your eyes off the screen. It is one of the best movies of the year and it is one that will simply blow you away.

Good Bad 4.8/5
  • Great Performances
  • Deeply Enthralling Story
  • Confusing / Unexplained Scenes

Movie Review: Train to Busan

Train To Busan is a horror, thriller zombie flick directed by Sang-ho Yeon.

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A group of passengers try to survive a zombie infested train, hoping their destination, Busan City, can offer them relief from the zombie-infestation that’s plaguing the country.


The Good

If 28 Days Later and Snowpiercer had a baby it would be Train to Busan. This movie offered more than your typical zombie survival movie genre and added a much needed emotional pull to get the audience invested in it’s characters. Our protagonist are likable and you don’t have a problem rooting for them. However they’re also humanized as everyone are shown to have flaws of their own.

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The cinematography is great and delivered some memorable zombie chase scenes as well as intense and nail-biting sequences. The director did a wonderful job keeping you at the edge of your seat.


The Bad

Though very minimal the movie does have some problems, at certain times you can easily tell the CG zombies from the real ones and as impressive the practical zombie make ups are, being able to recognize the computer generated does take you out of the movie.


Rating

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Overall Train to Busan is a solid zombie film. Though you’ve seen similar stories before, Train to Busan still manages to deliver without being too cliched. The characters are likable, your human antagonists get on your nerves and the zombie sequences are a great plus. Train to Busan is a competently made film and highly recommend it to everyone.

Good Bad 4/5
  • Likable Characters
  • Great Cinematography
  • Intense Zombie Sequences
  • CG Zombies
  • Questionable Character Decisions

Movie Review: Cafe Society

Love is not rational. You fall in love, you lose control

Cafe Society is the latest movie by Woody Allen, it stars Jessie Eisenberg, Kristen Stewart, Steve Carell and Blake Lively.

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Set in the 1930s’ Cafe Society follows Jessie Eisenberg as Bobby. A young man from New York who’s hoping to find success in Hollywood as well as success in finding love.


The Good

This year is not all bad for Jessie Eisenberg as he manages to bring out a decent performance in Woody Allen’s Cafe Society. Though similar to other Woody Allen movies, his lead is filled with his mannerisms and Jessie Eisenberg nails them perfectly. There’s a subtle charm behind him and he’s decent to watch through out the movie. Other actors such as Steve Carell and Corey Stoll are great, they bring a fun dynamic to the film and to their credit, their presence is felt through out.

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Another great aspect of this movie is its looks. This movie is beautiful to look at, the use of pastel colours compliments the film extremely well. The costume design is amazing and it does look and feel like the 1930s. As usual the music is great, Woody Allen knows how to pick his Jazz and they’re lovely to listen to.


The Bad

Unfortunately for this movie not all is good as it the story loses direction in the second half of the film. With what felt like random events compiled into a scene after another, it loses all momentum and frankly it might have a hard time retaining the audience’s attention.

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Another complaint is Blake Lively, usually Blake Lively is great in any movie, however there is not enough of her in this film almost resulting her role into a cameo appearance which is quite disappointing.


Rating

Overall Cafe Society is still a movie worth checking out, if you’re fan of Woody Allen, despite it’s flaws, this movie will still please you. The comedic timing is great though the romantic aspect didn’t hit as much. To her credit Kristen Stewart is decent, however nothing about her stood out.

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With great overall looks, music and soundtrack and the  and decent to strong performances, Cafe Society is still worth checking out.

Good Bad 3.5/5
  • Overall Great Cast Performances
  • Beautiful to Look At
  • Great Music
  • Directionless Second Half
  • Not enough Blake Lively