Movie Review: Spider Man Homecoming

Can’t you just be a friendly neighborhood Spider-Man?

Spider-Man: Homecoming is the 16th feature movie of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s directed by Jon Watts (Cop Car) and it stars Tom Holland, Robert Downey Jr, Michael Keaton and Marisa Tomei as Aunt May.

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Spider-Man: Homecoming tells the story of Peter Parker after the events of Captain America: Civil War. Recently given a new suit by Tony Stark, Peter tries to balance his life by juggling being a high-school kid by day and superhero by night. Hoping to impress Tony Stark and to officially become an Avenger.


The Good

This is the 6th big budget Spider-Man movie that we’ve seen on screen and it is safe to say that they got Peter Parker AND Spider-Man right this time. Tom Holland as Peter Parker was great. He captures the witty & clever banter that Spider Man possess and for once we get a Peter Parker who’s excited to be Spider-Man.

One of the things that impressed me is how they got the minor details right. Often times we’d wonder what happens to Peter’s belongings when he webs them in an alley and go about his day as Spider-Man or what if he’s in an area without tall buildings to swing on, they answered most of that.

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More great things about this is there are no badly written characters. Peter’s friends felt like real kids in a real high school. Especially being set in New York his group of friends are multicultural, and they tease each other like most circle of friends do.

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Surprisingly the villain, played by Michael Keaton, doesn’t fall into the villain problem that most of these types of movies have. His villainous nature has a very human motivation in which he’s just trying to provide for his family.


The Bad

Though the movie is fun through out the whole movie, the only thing that’s a complaint is how the CG looked at the very beginning. At certain times we can tell that the Spider-Man is CG and not a guy in a suit. Though very minor, it can be distracting.


Rating

Overall Spider-Man: Homecoming is easily one of the best super-hero movies this year, it is perfect as a Spider-Man movie and it’s the best we’ve seen the character on the big screen. Tom Holland is a joy to watch, he captures the excitement of what’s like being Spider-Man and his excitement is infectious.

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This movie is incredibly funny, the action sequences are great and your supporting characters are also great. There are tons of easter eggs through out the movie and not to mention a running gag that’s easy to miss but still cleverly put. As a movie in general, it’s not perfect but it is perfect as a Spider-Man movie. Make sure to stay after the credits as this has one of the best post credit scenes ever.

Good Bad 4.5/5
  • Tom Holland as Peter Parker/Spider-Man
  • The Vulture
  • Hilarious Story Telling
  • Hot Aunt May
  • Bad CG at the beginning
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Movie Review: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2

There are two types of beings in the universe: those who dance, and those who do not.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 is the sequel of the hugely successful Guardians of the Galaxy, it’s directed by James Gunn, and it starts Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Kurt Russell with Bradley Cooper returning as Rocket, Vin Diesel as Baby Groot and Dave Bautista as Drax.

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Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 continues the adventure of the Guardians and along the way they meet a man who claims he’s Peter’s dad.


The Good

One of the highlights of the first movie was how funny it was, and good to say they haven’t missed a beat. Vol 2 is hilarious with everyone seems to have their own comedic moments. The jokes were a hit most of the time and it helps with the movie’s progression.

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Surprisingly there’s plenty of dramatic moments, especially around Peter’s backstory but overall almost everyone in the Guardians have a sad story to tell. One of the stand out characters is Yondu, Michael Rooker, which was just a side character in the first movie, but he’s got a bigger role in Vol 2 and he’s great.


The Bad

Unfortunately the movie is not as great as the first movie in which the first movie had more of a cohesive plot, it didn’t feel the same way with Guardians Vol 2. The plot is almost split into two, with the movie telling two separate stories and sad to say this didn’t work out quite well. There’s a feeling of disconnect between the two plots and though they connect at the end, the progression felt rushed.

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With the plot going more into detail about everyone’s backstory this took a toll on the action side of things, we do get the Star Wars-esque spaceship battles, unfortunately we don’t get a lot of action from the Guardians themselves and it’s disappointing.

Another issue is how overbearing the music is, a lot of people loved the music from the first movie and though they used the same 80s feel here, the movie gets out of it’s way to play a song every five minutes and sad to say it becomes distracting.


Rating

Overall Guardians of the Galaxy is one of the better sequels in the MCU, it’s better than Thor 2 and Iron Man 2, that being said, it’s not better than the first movie. It’s still very humorous and it still highlights the camaraderie between the Guardians and the chemistry between them is infectious. Kurt Russell is decent, but without a doubt Yondu stole the show.

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The lack of real plot however hindered this movie and with a poor execution the movie felt rushed. That said, it’s still very entertaining and and still a lot of fun.

Good Bad 3.8/5
  • Amazing Visuals
  • Yondu
  • Hilarious
  • Overbearing Music
  • Lack of Plot
  • Not Enough Action

Movie Review: Beauty and the Beast

If she is the one who’ll break the spell, you must finally learn to love…

Beauty and the Beast is the live action adaptation of 1990s animated classic. It stars Emma Watson as Belle, Luke Evans, Ewan McGregor, Emma Thompson, Sir Ian McKellen and Dan Stevens as the Beast.

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A retelling of a story where a prince is transformed into a hideous monster where he must find someone who will truly love him in order to lift the curse that’s surrounds him and his castle.


The Good

One of the best things about the animated classic are it’s musicals, as cheesy and theatrical as they are they are fun to watch and to listen to. Glad to say it’s the same case in this live action remake. From the opening song to the grand ballroom dance sequence they got the musicals down and even adding new songs didn’t hinder this movie’s ability to deliver on that front.

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The cast is great however Ewan McGregor as Lumiere undeniably stole the show. He’s a lot of fun to watch, he’s incredibly charismatic and funny and it’s a delight every time he’s on screen.


The Bad

There’s very little complaints about this movie, the biggest is the movie is almost a shot by shot take on the original, there’s nothing groundbreaking about it and being a shot by shot remake kind of hurt this movie just a bit.


Rating

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Overall Beauty and the Beast is still a lot of fun, the musicals were great to watch. Emma Watson did a good job as Belle and the Beast though doesn’t have the feral animalistic features of the animated one is still good. The supporting casts were also good and even Luke Evans as Gaston is entertaining. The movie looks great overall from the custom design to the talking furniture, the movie manages to make you believe that Emma Watson is talking to a tea cup or a candelabrum. Highly recommended for families or lovers as a date movie.

Good Bad 3.8/5
  • Musical Set Pieces
  • Lumiere
  • Ballroom Dance Scene
  • Nothing New
  • Beast is not very Beasty

Movie Review: Power Rangers

It’s Morphing Time!!

Power Rangers is the latest film adaptation of the 1990s popular TV Show
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, It’s directed by Dean Israelite and stars Dacre Montgomery, Naomi Scott, Rj Cyler, Ludi Lin, Becky G and also features Elizabeth Banks as Rita, Bill Hader as Alpha 5 and Bryan Cranston as Zordon.

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When five teenagers stumble an alien spaceship due to an explosion at a mining facility, they soon find out that this is fate as they are chosen to be the Power Rangers and together they have to stop an ancient evil from destroying the planet.


The Good

One of the most pivotal aspects of the power ranger series is the five rangers themselves and in this movie we’re fortunate to have a likable bunch for our protagonists. They’re all given personalities and are also given good back stories, we see them grow from strangers to friends and though the dialogue between them is cheesy but it works.

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Our veteran actors are also great Bryan Cranston as Zordon wasn’t as goofy as expected but rather a serious entity that contributes to the rangers’ growth. Elizabeth Banks as Rita is also decent giving the rangers a menacing villain to deal with.

The movie surprisingly has a lot of serious and dramatic moments especially in the first half and it makes you appreciate the direction that the movie takes, there’s also a decent amount of humour in it and as cheesy as they are, it’s for the movie’s benefit.


The Bad

The movie has a large amount of flaws, one of which is the blatant commercial for a product. And though product placements are usually seen in movies, they managed to halt the movie and give a nice little commercial for a product and it becomes a recurring occurrence for the second half of the film.

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Another issue is the CGI, as expected this would have a giant robot fighting a giant monster. Unfortunately the CGI on these effects aren’t great, and for the most part the designs looked lazy, especially on the giant monster.


Rating

Overall this was a surprisingly fun film, if you’re a fan of the initial series. This is not for everyone, it’s a film made for specifically the fans. That said, this is a competent movie with decent direction. Our five protagonists are likable and none of them are annoying and Bryan Cranston as Zordon is great.

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However the blatant product placement and the bad CGI dragged this movie down a notch. And though it’s irredeemable at the end of the day it’s a Power Ranger movie and you’re bound to have Power Rangery sequences no matter how cheesy and goofy they are. If you’re a fan of the series there are plenty here to love than to hate, if you’re not, you might want to give this one a pass.

Good Bad 3.5/5
  • The Power Rangers
  • Bryan Cranston as Zordon
  • Good Mix of Humour and Drama
  • Product Placement
  • Bad CGI

Movie Review: Rogue One

We have hope. Rebellions are built on hope!

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, is directed by Gareth Edwards (Godzilla). It stars Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Donnie Yen, Riz Ahmed, Forest Whitaker and more.

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Rogue One is a straight Prequel to Star Wars: A New Hope which tells the story of a group of rebels who attempts to steal the plans for The Death Star.


The Good

With the huge success of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: Rogue One has huge footsteps to follow. Glad to say, Rogue One, not only managed to fill those footsteps but it also brought a refreshing way of story telling within the Star Wars movie universe.

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With a much serious tone and a grittier look, Rogue One emphasizes on the ‘Wars’ in Star Wars. For this movie however, the dark and serious tone worked wonders. Your major characters are taken more seriously and whenever they are in peril you feel for them. Strip away the blasters, storm-troppers and the spaceships. This is a war movie to it’s core. People are afraid, desperate and anxious and this movie captures that perfectly. You see the empire as an intimidating and terrifying force (pun intended).

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The movie has a great diverse international cast ranging from Riz Ahmed to Donnie Yen and Diego Luna all of which are good in the film. One character that stood out is K2-SO, voiced by Alan Tudyk. Unlike the C3POs, BB8s and R2D2s, K2-SO gave a whole new meaning to the sidekick robot, with a very nonchalant personality. This provides a much needed humour to alleviate the serious tone of the movie giving it a decent balance of the two.


The Bad

Although the movie can be praised for having a diverse cast, unfortunately there’s not a lot of depth within the supporting characters. Apart from Felicity Jones and Diego Luna, most of your side characters are one-dimensional. The lack of camaraderie from the ragtag group of characters can be felt and you feel that there is no strong connection among them.

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Another complaint is Forest Whitaker’s character, though as great of an actor as he is, he didn’t do too well in this movie and played a character in an over the top manner, from his accent to hi appearance, his character did not mesh well to the more down to earth characters in the movie.


Rating

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Overall Star Wars: Rogue One is a great refreshing take on a Star Wars story. The serious and dark tone of the movie worked incredibly well and the characters are great. Though there are scenes filled with expositions and character speeches, each act had their own moments. Especially the third act of the movie which is extremely exciting as well as must see Darth Vader scene. Rogue One is easily one of the better Star Wars movies and it’s highly recommended.

Good Bad 4.2/5
  • Serious Tone
  • Incredible 3rd Act
  • Darth Vader
  • Diverse Cast
  • One Dimensional Characters
  • Forest Whitaker

Movie Review: Kubo and the Two Strings

Review May Contain Spoilers

If you must blink, do it now

Kubo and the Two Strings is a stop-motion animated movie produced by Laika (ParaNorman, Coraline)starring Art Parkinson, Matthew McConaughey and Charlize Theron.

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Hunted by his Grandfather his daughters, Kubo must find three items to protect him from The Moon King. Accompanied by a monkey and a samurai beetle Kubo goes into a life changing journey that deals with death and acceptance.


The Good

Like previous Laika projects, Kubo looks incredible. The stop-motion animation is amazing as usual and it’s easily the most visually impressive film they’ve produced. Along with the stunning visuals, the voice acting is also great. Charlize Theron and Matthew McConaughey were great in their roles and numerous times, they’re humorous.

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This movie lives up to it’s genre as this is also a great action adventure film. The action scenes are incredible and the movie has also a lot of heart and emotions in it. This is a very maturely written film and for an animation that is amazing.


The Bad

There’s not a lot of complaints about the movie other than the fact that it follows the same beats a quest story would have and it does make the movie monotonous at times.


Rating

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Overall Kubo and the Two Strings is easily one of the best animated film in 2016. The amount of work put into making the stop-motion is staggering and makes the film a lot more impressive than it already is. The story has heart the action sequences are thrilling and the characters are likable. The movie is a lot of fun in general and at times of emotions it’s effective. Highly recommended for all ages.

Good Bad 4.8/5
  • Stop-Motion Animation
  • Trio of Kubo, Monkey and Beetle
  • Great Mythology

Movie Review – Captain America: Civil War

This job… we try to save as many people as we can. Sometimes that doesn’t mean everybody, but you don’t give up.

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When Marvel’s Civil War came out in 2007 it easily became one of the most unforgettable story arcs involving almost all of the Marvel superheroes. On one side we have Captain America, Steve Rogers leading the anti-registration on the other we have Iron Man, Tony Stark leading the pro-registration. 9 years later Marvel, Kevin Feige and The Russo Brothers (Joe and Anthony) have adapted the story-line as a follow up to Captain America: Winter Soldier as well as Avengers: Age of Ultron. Did The Russo Brothers did a great job adapting the crossover event?

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Following the events of Winter Soldier and Age of Ultron, The Avengers faces a different dilemma as they are being asked by the United Nation to sign The Sokovia Accords, which would remove their status as a private organization but rather work under The United Nations. This of course brought conflict to the Avengers as Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) believes that the safest hands are still their own though Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) believes that they need to be controlled.


The Good

This is possibly Marvel’s best Movie yet, it has everything from drama, action and comedy. For a superhero movie it is near perfect. The characters are great and for a huge ensemble cast The Russos did a great job juggling these characters and giving them enough screen time to standout but not too much to lose focus on the movie.

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From Chadwick Boseman as The Black Panther to Tom Holland as Spider-Man both new additions to the Marvel Cinematic Universe were not only introduced well but they were also given enough time to stand out from the other superheroes and both actors were incredible. Though the movie was already packed with actors and actresses the addition of Paul Rudd as Scott Lang or Ant-Man also compliments the current cast and he was used extremely well delivering very funny lines and creative action sequences.

All characters were nothing short of amazing, everyone had great moments, great dialogues and as colorful and super as they are, the directors did a great job humanizing these characters and they did it in a way that it adds a great amount of realism to their story.

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Apart from the great characters, the action sequences are also spectacular. The fight choreography is clean as it is hard hitting. The Russo brother’s did not miss a beat directing their action sequences. One scene that’s been getting quite the buzz is their so-called splash page event, which is a battle that happens in an empty airport. And this is where the movie kicks into full comic book territory as all the heroes go into full WWE battle royal mode as everyone fights everyone.

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And kudos to the Russo Brothers as they shot this as clearly as possible, despite the chaos in the screen you can still see what is going on, you can see who’s fighting who and it is enjoyable as it is exciting. The airport battle scene is possibly the best action sequence in the history of superhero or comic book movies.


The Bad

There’s very little to complain about the film, one of them is the villain. Though he’s motivation is compelling he was used mainly as a plot device in order to further the conflict and most of the time you forget that he’s in the movie.

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Another issue is the movie is not fully independent as in order to completely understand the scope of events in the film, you might have to watch the previous Captain America movie as well as Avengers: Age Of Ultron. It’s not necessary but it does help clarify the events that the movie talks about.


Rating

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As said before, this is possibly the best movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, easily one of the best movies to come out this year. The Russos did an exceptional job adapting the 2007 Marvel Comics story-line and though they didn’t follow through the source material, they did their best with what they have and they may have made a better version of said story-line.

The stakes are high and the consequences are severe, Captain America: Civil War pulls no punches as it delivers an emotionally stressful yet incredibly enjoyable film. In the end this is made by fans for the fans. As a movie on it’s own it’s still great but as a superhero movie it’s damn near perfect.

Good Bad 4.9/5
  • Black Panther & Spider Man
  • Airport Battle Scene
  • Strong Character Motivations
  • Villain’s Plans