Friday, April 27, 2018

Avengers Infinity War Review: A Marvelous Epic

For ten years Marvel Studios has become a household name in the world of cinema. What started off with Tony Stark suiting up in Iron Man became a worldwide phenomenon with hit films such as The Avengers. However this extensive lineup has been leading to one event and at long last that event is finally here-Avengers: Infinity War. Directed by the team of Anthony and Joe Russo Infinity War brings Marvel's iconic team together with other superheroes in one huge blockbuster. On the eve of its release comic book fans and moviegoers alike came to see the colossal movie, and among the attendance was one Film Adventurer. When the dust settled and the film faded to black, I found myself practically stunned from the experience as Avengers: Infinity War is perhaps Marvel Studio’s most ambitious film to date.

The story of Infinity War centers on Avengers coming together again to face another threat, but this times the stakes have never been higher as Thanos (Josh Brolin) has emerged to find the Infinity Stones and bring “balance to the universe”. The plot was a massive one as it not only brought elements from the previous Avengers films together but it added threads from the likes of Guardians of the Galaxy. It was certainly a lot to take in but the execution of this superhero tale was handled admirably. The story scattered across the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the characters were placed in their own parts of the story. This kind of storytelling was akin to the likes of Lord of the Rings and it was an ambitious direction for the plot. However, while it was effective, spreading out the story so much hinder it a little bit as parts of the plot could get lost in the thick of things. Fortunately the individual stories came together in the end which led to a conclusion empowered by excitement. Filled with twists and big moments this plot was a culmination of storytelling, and though it may have been perfect it was still an effective story to bring everything to a head.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Isle of Dogs Review: A One of Kind Animated Feature

There are many filmmakers out there but if there is one that could be consider truly one of a kind it would have to be Wes Anderson.  The director has a distinct style in his movies and tend to deal with outlandish stories with distinct imagery; and for this reason Anderson is among my favorite filmmakers working today. So when seeing a new Wes Anderson movie hitting theaters, I cannot help but be excited; and in this case it is the film known as Isle of Dogs. The new movies sees Anderson return to a style he used in The Fantastic Mr.Fox as Isle of Dogs is a stop motion animated feature. I finally had a chance to watch the new animated movie and I must say that Anderson was in rare form with Isle of Dogs.

Isle of Dogs centers on the canine Chief (Bryan Cranston) where he and his fellow pack must help the boy Atari Kobayashi (Koyu Rankin) find his lost dog Spots (Liev Schreiber) who has been missing since dogs were sentenced to trash island by Mayor Kobayashi (Kunichi Nomura). When it came to storytelling Isle of Dogs was as simple as it was captivating. The story was no doubt an adventure and a straightforward one at that. However it was all about how this movie presented its zany story and in this case the execution was sound. The story was always engaging and used its concepts to their fullest abilities. This was notable the movie’s subplots which were  presented well by adding more to the overall story. The movie also featured individual chapters and while this element did not have major implications on the movie itself, it did however give the plot a sense of style. With a few surprises the plot of Isle of Dogs relied on its presentation and I think that direction aided the movie by making this tale a noteworthy one.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Rampage Review: Monstrous Entertainment

Many video games have made the jump to silver screen with some adaptations being more successful than others. However if there was one video game that I never expected to be told in a celluloid format it would be the game Rampage. Rampage is a game series where you played as giant monsters who are tasked to destroy city after city. Now these colossal beasts burst on to the big screen in a spring blockbuster directed by Brad Peyton. Like most adaptations Rampage looked to break away from its source by bringing a new spin on the video game concept, but despite the changes Rampage seemed like a standard blockbuster. Going into this movie I did not have the highest expectations for Rampage, and this may have been a good mindset to have as I found myself quite entertained with this adaptation.

Rampage centers on Davis (Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) a primatologist who gets caught in a destructive situation after his ape George (Jason Liles) is transformed into massive mutant. The plot of Rampage was as simple as one could get. If you have seen the film’s trailer then odds are you probably know how this story plays out. However was this matter of simplicity a bad thing for the story? In my opinion no, it was not;in fact the plot’s straightforward storytelling was both appropriate and appreciated.  Some details got lost in delivery but even with its inconsistency the story still worked. The plot was entertaining as it never got boring and, much to my surprise, the story’s structure was paced remarkably well. When it came down to it Rampage was a story about giant monsters destroying things and the movie never strayed from this concept-which made this monstrous tale all the more enjoyable.

Friday, April 6, 2018

A Quiet Place Review: Silence is Golden for this Dynamic Horror Film

A Quiet Place Movie Poster
The realm of horror can be an interesting one. The movie genre is home to a number of concepts that tend to thrill, and even chill,l audiences. However, with such a variety at its midst, it can be difficult to bring something new to the likes of horror movies. Yet the latest horror film, A Quiet Place, could very well challenge this issue. Directed by John Kransinski A Quiet Place takes the idea of silence and melds it with a dystopian world. The movie has been getting good buzz and that was all the more reason for me to check out this new thriller. On a cloudy Thursday evening I checked out the new horror film and I must admit that I found myself  thoroughly impressed with A Quiet Place.

A Quiet Place tells the story of family trying to survive a harsh environment where monsters prey on people through sound. The plot of A Quiet Place takes a simple idea and mixes it with a straightforward narrative; and the end result was a captivating story. The plot takes the concept of silence and captivates on the theme to create a tense tale. The plot moved fairly quickly and this ended up be a double edged sword for the film. Given the movie’s concept it did make sense for the story to have a fast pace, but this direction did prevent the plot from exploring some of its plot points. Among these ideas was the dystopian world that work as the story’s backdrop. The apocalyptic world was interesting but it had little effect on the plot as a whole to the point where the desolate world was unnecessary and it would have been mores effective for the story just to take place in a isolated location. Yet even with this issue the plot remained effective as its sense of presentation was able to create a thrilling story.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Ready Player One Review: A True Cinematic Adventure

Ready Player One Movie Poster
If there is one name that has defined blockbuster movies it would be none other than Steven Spielberg. Although the acclaimed filmmaker is prominent in a array of genres it is in the likes of adventure films where Spielberg's influence is so pivotal. His latest film not only sees Spielberg return to the genre but  also celebrate the very idea behind fandoms. This movie is none other than Ready Player One. The new adventure film is based on the novel by Ernest Cline which centers on the idea of virtual reality while being an ode to pop culture. I cannot deny that I was looking forward to this one as the movie’s concept is right up my ally. After watching this sci-fi adventure I must that admit, and I do not say this likely, that Ready Player One is perhaps one of Spielberg’s best films in quite some time.

Ready Player One centers on Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan) who travels the virtual world known as the Oasis in order to find the Easter Egg left by the Oasis’creator James Halliday (Mark Rylance). In every aspect the plot to Ready Player One was an adventure. The plot does rely on elements and traits that are all too familiar to the adventure genre (not to mention a Spielberg blockbuster) but it all came down to how the movie utilized these elements-and Ready Player One certainly used these aspects to their highest caliber. Along with its sense of adventure the plot also featured strong themes and morals that grounded this out of this world tale. The ideas that surrounded the story were thoroughly executed and gave  a sense of complexity to this adventurous story. This was notable in the story of James Halliday which I found to be just as investing as the main journey. Another addition to the plot was its worldbuilding ability as both the Oasis and the Real World were plot elements rich with substance and creativity.  While some details, particularly getting into the third act, could be unclear it hardly affected the story’s presentation as I found myself invested in this adventure from beginning to end.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Pacific Rim Uprising Review: Rises Up As A Tolerable Sequel

Pacific Rim Uprising Movie Poster
If there is one thing I cannot but  love it is the concept of giant robots. The idea of mechanical titans has always been something I love seeing in pop culture. The only thing that is as good as a giant robot would be giant monsters such as Godzilla. So what happens when you have a movie about Giant Robots against Giant Monsters? The answer is a little film called Pacific Rim. The 2013 blockbuster was a treat to see by being a big time adventure for silver screen. Despite the movie under performing (a mystery that baffles me even to this day) the attention that Pacific Rim garnered was enough for a sequel to be developed; and that film has finally made its way to theaters in the form of Pacific Rim: Uprising. The first film was directed by none other than Guillermo Del Toro but this time around Steven S.DeKnight takes the helm for this sequel. So with a new director and studio backing the movie it seemed that Pacific Rim: Uprising had no shortage of obstacles to overcome; and the end result was an experience that was bittersweet.

Pacific Rim: Uprising takes place 10 years after the first film and centers on new heroes such as Jake Pentecost (John Boyega) who is tasked to train a new group of Jaeger pilots. The story of Uprising was simple and that was not a surprising direction given that its predecessor did not feature a complex plot either. However while Pacific Rim’s story was simplistic it knew how to use that direction while branching out to create an investing world. Uprising was not so fortunate but that was not to say that it did not try. There were several ideas in the plot that were interesting such as having a double perspective in story with the leads Jake and the cadet Amara (Cailee Spaeny). Plus some of the story’s twist were surprising and managed to keep things engaging. However what held the story back was its pacing as it seemingly rushed things along rather than letting elements flourish. If nothing else the plot of Uprising was by no means boring as, even though it was lacking in substance, it still found a way to be entertaining.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Tomb Raider Review: An Adventurous Adaptation

Tomb Raider Movie Poster

Video Games and movies tend to have a mix relationship. The transition from console to the silver screen can get  messy as more often than not it leads to adaptations that are either mediocre or just tedious. However that is not to say that every video game movie turns out to be unsuccessful. A cased point would be none other than Tomb Raider. The hit video game series made its cinematic debut in 2001 where it found some semblance of success. However, one sequel later, Tomb Raider quietly bowed out of the movie world as the series discontinued its celluloid adventure, that is until now. Lara Croft returns to the silver screen in a brand new adventure directed by Roar Uthaug. Rather than continuing from where it left off Tomb Raider is a reboot and based on the 2013 video game-which also was a reboot. Being a fan of the game, and never saying no to an adventure, I checked out the new Tomb Raider and found myself quite satisfied with the experience.

The story of Tomb Raider centers on Lara Croft (Alicia Vikander) who journeys to an uncharted island to find out what happened to her father (Dominic West). What she discovers is a group of mercenaries searching for the tomb of Himiko and the secrets within. When comparing it to the game’s story the plot managed to true to the ideas of its source; although it did take many liberties but that was to be expected. Looking at it for what it was the story of Tomb Raider was an effective adventure. The origin concept  worked for the movie as it gave a clear understanding of who Lara Croft is and what kind of adventures she deals with. A surprising element to the plot was that it took its time to build up Lara’s journey. Granted the pacing could be quick, particularly in the film’s climax, but this still worked  to the movie’s advantage by keeping things exciting. Along with a few surprises the plot of Tomb Raider was adventurous to say the least; and though it could be too straightforward it did not take away from the exciting execution of this adaptation.