Movie Review: Isle of Dogs

We’ll find him. Where ever he is, if he’s alive, we’ll find your dog.

Isle of Dogs is directed by Wes Anderson, it stars an ensemble cast featuring Koyu Rankin as Atari, Bryan Cranston, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Scarlett Johansson and more.

When all the dogs from the city of Megasaki has been moved to a nearby island. A young boy, Atari, is determined to find his pet dog Spots at all cost.


The Good

Much like Wes Anderson’s previous stop-motion movie, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Isle of Dogs looks incredible. The voice acting of the cast is of typical Wes Anderson movie, speaking softly with very little emotions but it works very well. To it’s credit it gave the dogs personalities and makes them endearing.

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Your five lead dogs are easily the best part of the movie, Bryan Cranston plays Chief, Edward Norton plays Rex, Bill Murray is Boss, Jeff Goldblum is Duke and Bob Balaban as King. Their interactions with each other and with Atari are great. There’s a lot of charm in their scenes and you can easily find yourself caring for these dogs.


The Bad

Unfortunately the second half of the movie is not as strong as the first half. Where the first half is all about Atari, his interaction with the five dogs and their journey within the island. The second half becomes less adventurous and more political.

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Greta Gerwig plays Tracy Walker who’s fighting for the dog’s and unfortunately she’s the weakest part of the movie, her arc comes of as uninteresting and dull. Sad to say she occupies certain parts of the second half of the movie and it drags the movie down a bit.


Rating

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Overall Isle of Dogs is still a fun movie, it has all the elements that you get from a Wes Anderson film, the quirky take on the characters, the cinematography and the voice acting it’s all there. Depending on the viewer if you’re a Wes Anderson fan you’ll definitely love this. Though it’s still good it’s not as good as Fantastic Mr Fox but still very enjoyable.

Good Bad 3.5/5
    • The Dogs
    • Overall Look
    • Weak Second Half
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Movie Review: Avengers: Infinity War (mild spoilers)

I hope they remember you.

Directed by the Russo Brothers the third installment of the Avengers franchise collects almost all the heroes in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, MCU, to go up against the mad titan Thanos, played by Josh Brolin.

The Avengers Assemble one more time to defeat the Mad Titan, Thanos who aims to collect six infinity stones and wipe out half of the life in the universe.


The Good

10 years and 18 movies in the making Avengers: Infinity War is without a doubt the most anticipated movie of this year and boy did it deliver. This is the most ambitious project in recent history and to credit the Russo Brothers and the screen writers this movie is incredible.

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Josh Brolin plays Thanos the main villain of this story and they took their time fleshing him out. They gave him an empathetic backstory that makes him one of it not the best villain to date.

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A major highlight of these Marvel films is the humor and with all the seriousness and dread that’s revolving around the movie they still managed to alleviate some of it by having endearing and humorous interactions between our heroes. Whether it’s with Thor and Rocket Racoon or Peter Quill and Iron Man. These interactions are something fans would would gleefully watch and cheer.

The action sequences are spectacular and creative, it highlights some of the heroes abilities and it makes them even more interesting than they previously were. There are also certain dramatic moments that can get you more emotionally invested in these characters, Thanos included.


The Bad

The only glaring issue I have in the movie is it’s not a standalone movie. As mentioned above this movie have a 10 year history behind it and 18 other movies that accompany it, for someone to be fully invested, they need to have some prior knowledge about the infinity stones or previous marvel films.

There are minor issues as well, since the movie is huge in scope the story is divided into quadrants all leading up to one climax and some plot points take a little too long to resolve while other aren’t all that explored at all.


Rating

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Avengers: Infinity War is something we haven’t seen before the culmination of a 10 year project by Marvel pays off in a big way and it’s not afraid to push the limits in terms of superhero storytelling. With a huge cast to juggle the writers and the Russo Brothers manages to tell a story that’s clear and compelling. If you’re a fan of the Marvel movies there’s no reason for you to skip this film, it’s a must watch for a fan.

Good Bad 4.8/5
    • Josh Brolin as Thanos
    • Heroes Interactions
    • Deep Storytelling
    • minor plot points

Movie Review: Ready Player One

People come to the Oasis for all the things they can do, but they stay for all the things they can be.

Ready Player One is based on the hit novel by Ernest Cline, it’s directed by Steven Speilberg and it stars Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke and Ben Mendelsohn.

When the creator of the OASIS, James Halliday, dies. He announced that he’s left an Easter Egg within the OASIS and whoever finds it first inherits the game company.


The Good

Ready Player One is one of the most anticipated movie this year and for me, this movie did not disappoint. The movie is packed with pop culture references from the 80s up till present day and for many this may just be a gimmick. However majority of the time it works, some references are woven nicely into the story creating a generally fun movie.

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The visual effects were incredible, especially when our characters are inside the OASIS. Steven Spielberg does what he does best and creating a fascinating world where everything presented is plausible. Our leads have great chemistry and makes up for characters you want to root for.


The Bad

The movie does have some flaws, one major point of the story is the love story between Tye Sheridan and Olivia Cooke in a setting where this is unnecessary not only does this feels forced but it also happens in an unrealistic way.


Rating

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Overall Ready Player One is highly enjoyable from start to finish, it delivers with the pop culture references and it does it in a way that’s not too distracting nor obnoxious and at times it helps forward the plot. Steven Spielberg makes use of the CG effects very well and delivers a very exciting third act. Ready Player One is highly recommended.

Good Bad 4.5/5
    • The OASIS
    • Second Challenge
    • Exciting Third Act
    • Forced Love Story

 

Movie Review: Coco

I have to sing. It’s not just *in* me… It *is* Me.

Coco is the latest animated film from Pixar and it’s directed by Lee Unkrich and Adrian Molina. It stars newcomer Anthony Gonzalez, Benjamin Bratt and Gael Garcia Bernal.

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Aspiring musician Miguel, confronted with his family’s ancestral ban on music, enters the Land of the Dead to find his great-great-grandfather, a legendary singer.


The Good

Coco is easily this year’s best animated movie. The beautiful design of the Land of the Dead is one of the many highlights of this film. The colourful environment the neon colours of the animals and the look of the dead, it’s a marvel to look at.

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Another highlight of this film is how they incorporated the Mexican culture. With the theme of Dio De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) you can tell Pixar did their homework to make sure they got it right and they did. Especially with a strong focus on family it’s fascinating to watch and it sucks you right into the movie.

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The strongest aspect of this movie however is the story. Though it starts of as your typical Pixar movie with a character going from point A to B. There are moments in this film where they completely turns the story around and to a point where you don’t know where it’s headed. The story is incredibly enthralling and it’s beautiful as well as powerful.


The Bad

The only complaint I have for this movie, and it’s very minor is the humour, some of the laughs and gags are something you’ve seen before with skeletons pulling themselves apart and putting them back together. It’s very basic, but it does not hinder the overall quality of the movie.


Rating

9

As mentioned above Coco is easily one of the best movies to have come out this year. With a strong and powerful story and gorgeous animation. Coco will have you sad crying and happy crying. It’s a beautiful film accompanied by beautiful music and great voice acting from everybody involved. This film is highly recommended for everyone.

Good Bad 5/5
    • Beautiful Design and Animation
    • Strong Story
    • Lovely Music

 

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

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