Tag Archives: Marvel

Review: Wonder Woman

Thumbs up or thumbs down? Simple, spoiler free reviews.

Before becoming Wonder Woman, she was Diana, princess of the Amazons. Raised on a sheltered island paradise, Diana meets an American pilot who tells her of the war to end all wars that is raging in the outside world. Convinced that she can stop the threat, Diana leaves her home for the first time and finally discovers her full powers and true destiny.

Oh wow, it actually happened! A good, no, a great DC movie! I, along with the rest of the world, had given up hope yet after the disappointments of Man of Steel (although admittedly I thought that was okay, though flawed), Batman Vs Superman and Suicide Squad comes Wonder Woman and it’s really quite good!

I loved pretty much everything about this film and sat there with a great big dumb grin on my face for the entire time. If DC can correct their course for the rest of their cinematic universe things might just be okay again.

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Wonder Woman is showing DC the way to make decent superhero films, but can they do it again?

Wonder Woman is everything it should have been and more. It shows that you don’t need to go all in on gritty and real and depressing to make a great superhero film. How has it taken DC this long to make something that’s worth watching? It’s fun, endearing and the action scenes are great too. Stylistically its excellent, the humour is spot on and it actually shows genuine heart as well. Wonder Woman is 100%, completely and totally bad ass.

The relationship between Diana and Captain Steve Trevor is the linchpin of the entire movie. The chemistry between Gal Gadot and Chris Pine is excellent. In fact to be honest, both are just excellent throughout. Pine is charming and confident while Gadot is equally as confident, strong, independent, noble and caring and sexy as well. Yet at the same time slightly naive too. It’s a perfect combination.

Here’s a thought, Wonder Woman wasn’t directed by Zack Synder and it’s a good film. Coincidence? Well, no not really. As he didn’t direct Suicide Squad and that was all sorts of horrible. What it does seem to show is that everyone was on board with the vision of this film and worked towards it, unlike the absolute messes that have occurred previously.

Instead Wonder Woman is the first ever superhero film to be directed by a woman, which is all sorts of crazy. Patty Jenkins, who was briefly signed on to direct the sequel to Thor, did a fantastic job here. Again I loved the stylistic choices, I thought everything looked great and the tone was spot on. I wonder if Marvel are kicking themselves for letting her go now?

If you haven’t seen Wonder Woman yet, put aside your disappointments of previous DC movies and go out and see it. You won’t regret it.

Verdict: Thumbs Up

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Review: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

 Thumbs up or thumbs down? Simple, spoiler free reviews.

The Guardians must fight to keep their newfound family together as they unravel the mysteries of Peter Quill’s true parentage…

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♥ Baby Groot ♥

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is really, really, really, really, really good. Hands down my favourite movie I have seen this year. It is just so much fun.

I think that Guardians 2 once again nails the ‘fun space adventure’ genre and I am actually finding it really difficult to review this film because quite frankly I can not think of anything else to say other than ‘its brilliant, go and watch it. You silly buggers why haven’t you already gone to see it?’.

The returning cast are all great, the new characters are really cool. Chris Pratt is pretty much the coolest man alive right now and Dave Bautista Zoe Saldana, Bradley Cooper, Kurt Russel and Vin Diesel are all excellent too.

Vol. 2, as you’d expect, has a brilliant soundtrack and it looks incredible as well. The immense array of colours, coupled with the musical choices make everything seem so bright, wonderful and adventurous. It is really nice to see the contrast of the Guardians franchise in a world of full of ‘dark and gritty’ superhero films.

Enough gushing though butI really liked it. Can you tell?

A few nit-picks I want to mention though. Sometimes Vol. 2 does try to squeeze in too many jokes and there are a few that fall flat. Mostly it moments that do not even need a joke taking away tension or intrigue. Secondly, the musical choices worked seamlessly in the original and really added to the film. This time around ‘the gimmick’ does occasionally feel a little more forced, maybe its just that the soundtrack in the first one is especially excellent though. Finally, good lord there were a lot of cameos and new characters introduced.

As I said though, in the grand scheme of things I am just nit-picking. I loved this film and spent the entire time I was watching with a big dumb grin on my face. Guardians continues to be my favourite Marvel cinematic property by some distance. Plus, I mean…Baby Groot is just awesome right?

Verdict: Thumbs up

Top 3 Films of 2016

It’s 2017! 2016 finally ended, huzzah! I hope you’ve all seen some great films this year whatever you’re into (not that you sick freak!). Normally with these kinds of lists you get your big Top 10s or Top 20s, but let’s be serious no one really pays attention till the Top 3 anyway. Why? Because just like in the Olympics, if you aren’t Gold, Silver or Bronze. You lost baby! So I’m going to cut the waffle and tell you my 3 favourite film released in 2016!

Immediately going to break my rules with two honourable mentions; Rogue One and Hateful Eight. I very much enjoyed both of these and they almost made the cut. On the exact opposite side, a dishonourable mention if you will, to Star Trek: Beyond. I’m not doing a worst list, but I just need to let everyone know once again how very disappointed I was in that awful, lazy, mess of a film.

Bronze Medal: The Nice Guys

What a lot of fun The Nice Guys is. Heck of a film, highly recommend it. It’s funny, charming and a tad violent. The characters of Healy and March are both disastrous in their own ways and balance out perfectly. They’re great characters and Crowe and Gosling are in fine form. I’m a big fan of both in general and this film is a great showcase for why. Personally I think Angourie Rice, who plays March’s daughter steals every scene she is in. It’s so common for me to criticise younger actors but you wont get any of that for her. She’s excellent. Overall The Nice Guys is an excellent film, full of fun characters, good performances and twists.

Silver Medal: Deadpool

We’ve seen Deadpool before, or rather we’ve seen Wade Wilson before. In the generally atrocious Wolerine: Origins film were we got a very brief taste of his smart mouth antics only for him to be completely bastardised in the finale.

Deadpool is rude, ever so crude and violent. It loves breaking the fourth wall. TJ Miller cracks my favourite line suggesting to Wade that he go and talk to a guy to ‘advance the plot’. Brilliant.  The opening credits and first scene set the tone perfectly for this movie. It gleefully mocks itself, actors, character traits, clichés and other franchises.

Deadpool is as unique as it is hilarious. Action-packed from start to finish. It’s everything you’d want from the franchise. In such a crowded market for comic book movies it was always going to take something this different and unique as Deapool to make its voice heard. Thankfully after years stuck out in the wilderness a sequel has already been already confirmed. So we won’t have to wait too long for another taste of Deadpool’s crazy antics.

Gold Medal: The Revenant

the-revenant-image-leonardo-dicaprioLeonardo DiCaprio doesn’t make bad movies. That’s a fact. His track record is unbelievable. Personally I don’t pay all that much attention to award shows. I like the films I like, some win Oscars, others don’t. It doesn’t matter. The Revenant is based on true events, granted there’s a lot of artistic license taken here. But those changes create a compelling story and great cinema. It’s punishing, brutal, grisly, heart breaking and utterly captivating at the same time. It’s a slow burn but you are willing Hugh Glass along every step of the way, willing him on to survive.

The film looks fantastic as well. Director Alejandro González Iñárritu did a great job here. It’s filled with breathtaking cinematography. What’s going to be talked about the most though is the acting. In particular DiCaprio and Hardy although the whole cast do a great job. We get an extremely powerful performance from Leonardo but I think it’s Hardy who steals the show. As good as DiCaprio is as Glass, Tom Hardy is better as the sinister Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald is a disgusting, vile man and it’s Hardy’s performance that really makes you believe that. After all the main reason you want to see Glass survive is because Fitzgerald is such a repulsive man. By the end of the journey you are desperate to see him get his revenge.

 

Doctor Strange [Review]

Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down? Simple, spoiler free reviews.

doctor_strange_posterThe life of talented neurosurgeon Dr. Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) changes after a car accident. When traditional medicine fails him, he looks for healing and hope, in a mysterious enclave. He quickly learns that the enclave is at the front line of a battle against unseen dark forces bent on destroying reality. He must put ego aside and learn the secrets of a hidden world of mysticism and alternate dimensions. Before long, Strange is forced to choose between his life of fortune and status or leave it all behind to defend the world as the most powerful sorcerer in existence.


With DC and Warner Brothers churning out garbage, it’s nice to return to the ever reliable consistency of Marvel Studios who have added another solid film to their expanding universe. Continue reading

Guardians of the Galaxy [Film Review]

Thumbs up or thumbs down? Simple. Spoiler free reviews. Keep it simple dummy.

guardians-of-the-galaxy-poster-star-lordAfter stealing a mysterious orb in the far reaches of outer space, Peter Quill from Earth, is now the main target of a manhunt led Ronan the Accuser. To help fight Ronan and his team and save the galaxy from his power, Quill creates a team of intergalactic criminals who are forced to work together in order to stop a fanatical warrior from taking control of the universe. They will become known as the “Guardians of the Galaxy”.

I didn’t know anything about Guardians of the Galaxy before this came out, but just like with a lot of people, it’s now one of my favourite Marvel properties.

What I can tell you now is that it was directed by James Gunn and stars Chris Pratt, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Dave Bautista and Zoe Saldana, who are all brilliant in their respective roles. It also has an excellent soundtrack featuring songs from the 70’s and 80’s. In fact in August 2014, Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix Vol. 1 reached the top of the Billboard 200 chart, becoming the first soundtrack album in history consisting entirely of previously released songs to top the chart.

Continue reading

Ant-Man [Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down?]

Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down keeps film reviews short, to the point and most importantly SPOILER FREE! Keep it simple. Would you recommend this film or not?

Seen as the biggest gamble by Marvel in their cinematic universe Ant-Man is the story of Scott Lang, a ‘master their’ just released from prison. After being recruited by Dr. Hank Pym, Lang becomes The Ant-Man. Armed with a suit that allows him to shrink in size, possess superhuman strength and control an army of ants. The miniature hero must use his new skills to prevent Darren Cross, Pym’s former protégé, from perfecting the same technology and using it as a weapon for evil.

ant-man_posterAnt-Man gets a pretty hard time.  Criticism often thrown its way are that it’s been seen before, it’s a clichéd redemption story and when you step back and think about it. Very similar in story to Marvels own Iron Man 1. The reality of that is mostly true in honesty. Bald evil former partner wants to use technology for evil and is happy to kill anyone who gets in his way? That’s Jeff Bridges in Iron Man!

It doesn’t stop Ant-Man from being a very enjoyable Marvel movie. It’s a lot of fun and really, that’s all you want from a comic book movie. Paul Rudd is great, he plays the lead role and is able to bring equal amounts of comedy, emotion and action to the role. It works well. Plus he’s got a sweet six-pack now.

The real star of the movie however is Michael Peña. That dude is hilarious! He steals every single scene he’s in. The stories he tell throughout the movie are excellent and they way they are shot is brilliant.

Ant-Man is definitely in my top 5 favourite Marvel films. For those interested my current ranking is:

  1. Iron Man
  2. Guardians of the Galaxy
  3. Captain America: Winter Soldier
  4. The Avengers
  5. Ant-Man

So it’s in pretty good company. I look forward to seeing Ant-Man’s involvement in in Captain America: Civil War. Actually I’m just looking forward to that film in general.

 

Verdict: Thumbs Up