The First Purge: Make it the last Purge

I’ve never thought much of the “Purge” films. I know the first one had great potential, but failed to stick the landing, and they got progressively better from there. “The Purge: Election Year” was a film I planned to see but never did, but I respected what it was trying to do: Tackle in some small way the political climate surrounding the yearly Purge, a period of time where all crime is legal for 12 hours because apparently humans are inherently violent and they need the catharsis, even if it was done under the guise of a mostly shitty Blumhouse horror flick.

And thus, I have revealed my hand, which is empty. Coming into the new “Purge” movie, “The First Purge,” I lacked any prior viewing of the previous three films, figuring that this might be the perfect time to jump into the series because it’s a prequel. This film poises itself to answer the question of how the Purge started, complete with advertisements boasting a portrayal of America very similar to our own, red “Make America Great Again” hats and all. Continue reading “The First Purge: Make it the last Purge”

Jurassic World 2: Liar Revealed Part 5

I like dinosaurs. Chances are, you like dinosaurs, too. But I don’t like liar revealed stories, at least how Hollywood has been using them.

Don’t get me wrong, when done right, a proper liar revealed story can add extra depth to already complex stories, while giving the audience a “gotcha” moment that makes sense and, as a result, is deeply satisfying. But when done poorly, liar revealed stories can feel shoehorned in cheaply, and in the worst cases, can create plot holes and inconsistent characters.

But first, let’s get back to the dinosaurs. This is “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom!” Continue reading “Jurassic World 2: Liar Revealed Part 5”

The Incredibles 2 is just plain ok

“The Incredibles 2.” What do I have to say about this? Finally, after an unnecessary but genius “Toy Story” sequel, multiple mediocre “Cars” sequels – even a sequel to “Monsters Inc.,” does Brad Bird’s “The Incredibles” get a second installment.

I was unaware that many people were asking for this.

Don’t get me wrong, a second “Incredibles” could have been fun, groundbreaking in fact. Bird is a fantastic writer-director, and given that he had 13 years to come up with a sequel, this film was always destined to be good, even incredible. However, while the first one ends on an obligatory sequel bait scene, that seemed to be making fun of sequel bait scenes (the scene’s villain, the Underminer, would look at home right next to “Deadpool 2”’s original X-Force squad of rejects), the film wraps up in a way that doesn’t leave very much room for Pixar to explore the character they set up, unless they aged them considerably. Continue reading “The Incredibles 2 is just plain ok”

Ocean’s 8 is Ocean’s Gr8

Actually, it’s not. In fact, it’s downright mediocre at times, but I guess that’s what happens when you are dead set on including a pun in your headline before you see a movie, regardless of how you feel about it.

“Ocean’s 8” is the latest installment in the long dead “Ocean’s” franchise, resurrected by Hollywood’s desperation to cram anything into theaters with a recognizable name. This time around, the film boasts a primarily-female cast, led by Sandra Bullock as the estranged sister of franchise main character Danny Ocean, Debby Ocean. This time around, the goal is to steal the Toussaint, a $150 million necklace associated with British royalty. Continue reading “Ocean’s 8 is Ocean’s Gr8”

Jumanji 2017: Jungle 2 Jungle

2017 saw a lot of awful things hit the silver screen. “Justice League” reared its ugly head, “War for the Planet of the Apes” gave us an uninspired conclusion to what was a promising series, “Alien: Covenant” made us question why anyone liked “Alien” in the first place, and we got another “Transformers” sequel. Golly gee.

But in my opinion, one of the worst movies to come out of last year was a film that epitomizes sequel and reboot culture so perfectly that you probably forgot about it.

That movie is “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.”

I mean “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle.” Don’t jokes translate so well in text?

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Mr. Van Allsburg

“Jumanji” was originally a children’s book by Chris Van Allsburg, adapted into a popular 1995 movie starring the late great Robin Williams. The adaptation was about as true to the source material as say, Disney’s “The Jungle Book” adaptation, but it worked and there was a cartoon later that included more elements from the book, so all was forgiven. Suffice it to say, it included enough inspiration from the source material to make this type of story work, while adding its own touches that made it stand on its own two feet.  Continue reading “Jumanji 2017: Jungle 2 Jungle”

Solo: A Solo Story

What do you get when you have a studio that wants to make the most money it can off of a property it just bought but doesn’t have the gusto to take that franchise into new and interesting places, potentially bringing in other demographics that they’re not serving? You get “Solo: A Box Office Story.”

“Solo: A Star Wars Story” is a competent film all around. All the performances are fine, with a love-it-or-hate-it portrayal of young Lando Calrissian by Donald Glover, a surprisingly serviceable take on young Han Solo by Alden Ehrenreich, an interesting Woody Harrelson performance, an OK story, a decent premise, and an otherwise forgettable supporting cast.

To the tune of $250 million.

[Unrelated video]

Continue reading “Solo: A Solo Story”