Saturday, July 28, 2012

Movie Review - Legion

Tonight's movie is Legion IMDB - Post

This is not my typical movie that I would watch.  However I remember watching the previews thinking is something about this movie that I want to see it.  I am glad that I listened to myself, I finally got around to renting it.  This is actually a very well done movie I enjoyed it.

We start off meeting the Archangel Michael who dramatically cuts off his wings and then proceeds to kick ass and take names.  We then flash to an innocent gas station/diner in the middle of the desert.  This is where we meet Bob, Jeep, and Charlie, the other important characters of the movie.

It is at this gas station where we have a really great scene.  An old lady with a walker comes into the diner, she is really nice and sweet, at first.  She then gets really rude and crude and proceeds to bite someone's jugular vein out of their neck and wreak some major havoc on the diner.

As they are dumping Granny's body they happen across Michael who tells them there are many more of the things like Granny on the way.  This is were things really pick up, it starts to feel like an old school zombie movie at this point.  Lots of shooting and exploding zombies, oh wait possessed people, not zombies.

The special effects are second to none, they really went all out.  The makeup artists really did a good job as well.  The zombie like people look great, that is if it's not all just CGI and actual makeup.  There were lots of guns and some cool explosions.  They were not over the top with the explosions though.  That can be a bit annoying in  movie when things blow up, just for the sake of blowing up.

I rate this movie four out of five smiley Mike heads.  This just isn't the type of movie that I typically watch, if it was then perhaps I would have come off another half or whole smiley Mike head.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Movie Review - Riverworld

I watched a made for TV movie last night called Riverworld.  Internet Movie DataBase - Posting

This was an interesting movie, not great, but not awful.  I just realized that it was made for Syfy channel, which explains the large amount of blah that this film portrays.  There is nothing great about it, the acting is decent but not great, the special effects are decent but not great, there is nothing about this film that screams ohhhh ahhhh.

They never did a good job of explaining anything, it just was.  I'm sorry it's not mysterious if you can't understand what the frick is going on in the first place.  All I know is we had some good guys, some bad guys and some mysterious blue guys who seemed to be fighting each other for who knows what.  Like I said, if you don't explain anything why do I care about the fact that the main characters are killing each other.  Also you can never die, at least not permanently in Riverworld.  You just pop up out of the river at some random place and some random time later after you are blown to smithereens.

Just when the movie was almost over we find out that they end up almost where we started the movie.  As I keep saying in all of my movie reviews, I expect something to happen in a film that changes the characters at the end.  Even if the something is a trivial as, Hey I don't really like peanut butter and banana sandwiches.  Although as a saving grace they give you a feeling that the movie serves as a way to describe the trials and tribulations of life the universe and everything.

The best lines were written for Samuel Clemens, otherwise know as Mark Twain.  The actor delivered the lines beautifully and it was very well written.  I once watched a PBS special on Samuel Clemens and some of the things he said in his letters was extraordinarily close to his lines in this movie.

Overall the movie was worth watching for die hard Science Fiction fans, like me.  However if you just want an action movie or a drama then I would highly suggest you look elsewhere for your entertainment needs.

I rate this film three and a half smiley Mike heads.  If they could have portrayed the story a little better then I might have given it four smiley Mike heads but they failed at that so three and a half.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Movie Review - Bad Teacher

Tonight's movie is Bad Teacher.  IMDB - Post  Wow, what can I say about this film.  It is just not right,  in a wonderful way.  This film follows the life of Elizabeth Halsey, as she hits her highs and lows of teaching.  I'm pretty sure that she breaks just about every rule of teaching that there is.

We meet Elizabeth on one of the worst days of her life.  Her fiance finds out she is only into him for his money.  We fast forward a year and find Elizabeth back teaching at the school because she has no where else to go.

She has not desire to teach until she finds out there is money involved for an award for best teacher.  She desperately wants a boob job because she thinks this will help her land a rich man that will support her financially.

Seeing her at her low is actually kind of humorous.  The night and day from bad teacher to nazi teacher is just as funny.  I don't think that this film really hits its best moments until about half way into the movie.

The acting is amazing, they really went out of their way to get some great comedic actors to star in this film.  Elizabeth's arch nemesis of the movie Amy Squirrel is actually over the top cheesy when we start the movie but she quickly falls to the dark side in an effort to discredit Elizabeth.  We of course meet the object of the feud about 30 minutes into the movie.  Scott Delacorte is a rich idealist who is super naive and gullible.  Elizabeth is after him for his money of course, Amy loves him because they are both the cliche of a kindergarten teacher who is teaching middle school.  Together they make up the wonder puke twins, they are so cute they make you want to puke all over them.

It is as this point that we meet Russell Gettis the gym teacher who has a crush on Elizabeth.  She keeps brushing off because she is a gold digger and he is a gym teacher.

Russell is of course nonplussed by her constant rejections and patiently keeps chasing after her.  Some of their interactions are great, the way they play off each other is wonderful to watch.

The beginning of this movie tends to be a bit awkward to watch and it only had about half of my attention but once it got going, wow, it really gets going.

Russell actually has one of the best lines in the movie.  He delivers it beautifully when they are on the field trip near the end of the film.  I would tell you what it is but I don't want to ruin it should you choose to watch this film.

So I will get to my rating already.

I rate this film four and a half smiley Mike heads.

If it hadn't of been such an odd beginning, I probably would have given it five smiley Mike heads.

As always thanks for reading, feel free to leave comments below.  If you have seen this movie let me know what you thought of it.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Movie Review - Wall-E

Have you ever wondered what life could be like if Wal-Mart ruled the world?  IMDB - Post I think this movie pretty much answers that question.  Although I can't only blame the retail giant that Buy N Large is obviously based on.  No, humanity is mostly to blame sadly  in this film.

Wall-E takes place on Earth in the distant future where we (humans) have managed to screw up our earth so bad we had to move out.  We are suppose to hang out in these space ships for a few years while the Wall-E's all clean up earth and then we come back to a spotless planet all happy and green.  The only problem is that somewhere along the way we had forgotten where we came from.

I can't say as I blame them, what with the robots to wait on you and take care of your every need who could remember something as insignificant as earth.  I think that this is a great cautionary tale to help us remember to be green and conserve what we can while we can.

There are some really wonderfully created scenes in the film, especially noteworthy is the scene where Wall-E and Eve are flying together in space.  It's beautiful to see the Aerial display that the two put on, this is a great scene that is really cool.  The scenes where eve's rocket ship lands and takes off are some really great scenes as well.  Special effects are great, and the whole movie really makes you feel like you are viewing these two robots go about their lives.

There is something interesting to see about the differences of the people and the robots in the film.  In many ways the humans are acting like robots and the robots act very much like humans.  Perhaps this was intentional given the subject matter of this movie.

Overall it was a good movie.  There is a scene where some traumatic things happen late in the movie which I could have done without though.  I suppose this is the nature of Disney though.  They are great at bringing you to great heights but only because they take you to great lows first.  Really Bambi, mom gets killed, Nemo, his entire family gets eaten but his dad, and the list goes on.

As I'm sure you know by now, I am all about endings making or breaking the movie.  This movie is no exception to that rule, I have to say I was pretty happy with the way this movie turns out.  Is humanity holding hands in a field of flowers singing drinking coke, not exactly.  However you can see that they are starting to get it and perhaps the world might actually be a better place when they are finished.

I give this movie four out of five smiley Mike heads.

Perhaps if they would have left out a bit of the drama at the end I might have given it five smiley Mike heads.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Movie Review - Total Recall (1990)

So having just found out that they are making an updated version of this movie to be released this year I really wanted to go and watch the original again.  This is what happened when I did, Total Recall the movie review. IMDB Post

I saw this movie when it came out, it's a darn good thing we had HBO.  I hate to date myself but yeah that was 22 years ago.  Has it really been that long?  Geez how time flies when you aren't watching it.

I remember really liking this movie as a kid, of course three breasted women tend to make an impression on a 13 year old.  I am getting way ahead of myself though, lets start sooner than that.

Total Recall follows the life of Doug Quaid an average ordinary guy with a job in a rock quarry.  One day he sees an ad on the subway for a product called Rekall, which helps you take a vacation without going anywhere.  Essentially they implant the memories of the experience in your brain so you think you really went to the destination of your choosing, plan who you will see and what you will do ahead of time.

When Doug visits Rekall his life gets turned upside down.  His coworker tries to kill him and he can't figure out why.  Things really get crazy from here on out.

This movie has some really great special effects that still stand up in today's era of computer generated effects.  There are also some really neat aspects in this movie that are pure science fiction.  However I find it humorous that in one scene Doug's wife is practicing her tennis swing against a hologram and it is letting her know if she got it correct or not.  This technology totally reminds me of Nintendo Wii or XBOX Kinect.  Funny how science fiction becomes reality in only 22 years.

Overall this movie is really great, if you were not fortunate enough to see it back in the day don't worry it still translates well to today's audience unlike other Sci-Fi movies I could mention.  I highly recommend that you check this one out prior to going to see the remake this summer.

I rate this movie five out of five smiley Mike heads.  For pure creativeness in story line and special effects. 

Friday, July 6, 2012

Movie Review - Tenure

I watched this odd little film called Tenure this evening.  IMDB Post

This film follows the life of Charlie Thurber, an awkward English teacher at Grey University who is up for Tenure, hence the name of the movie.  He has sort of been coasting through life as a teacher being declined Tenure at two universities, Grey is sort of his last chance to make his father proud.

Charlie's father, William Thurber, was a Tenured English Professor at Harvard University.  We find William in an adult foster care facility because he wandered away from home and Charlie's overbearing sister is certain that he has Alzheimer's disease.

This movie was hard to watch at moments, Charlie is really very down, and has the worst friend in Jay Hadley who is obsessed with finding Bigfoot.  Jay continuously is trying to get Charlie into trouble in  search of fun times.

There is a scene when this very grumpy teacher who happens to be Charlie's boss walks into the faculty lounge and flatly accuses Charlie of peeing on the toilet seat.  She is ruthless and he is very meek, in his disagreeing with her.  It was very uncomfortable for me to watch but perhaps this might be funny to other people.  I could certainly see a bit of humor in this.  However it was mostly just uncomfortable for me.  There are quite a few other scenes like this in the film so if this is your type of humor then this film is for you.

I definitely loved the soundtrack I felt it fit perfectly with the theme of the film.   The costumes were spot on and the effects were very few however done quite well.

As I have always said that an ending can make or break a movie for me.  I found this film's ending to be quite satisfying.  You see Charlie take some steps in the middle of the film to make himself look more appealing for his shot at tenure.  These actions ultimately help to make him a better person at the end of the movie.  It's nice to know that in the movies one can indeed better themselves and still have a happy ending.

I particularly like how they keep you guessing right up until the very end of the movie, as I said it turns out very well indeed.

I rate this movie three and a half smiley Mike heads.

I perhaps would have given it 3 smiley Mike heads, however the ending alone was worth the extra half a head.  I would certainly put this on your watch list just in the middle somewhere.

As always thanks for reading, feel free to share your impressions of my review below.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Movie Review - The Time Machine (2002)

I just finished watching "The Time Machine" from 2002.  IMDB Post  I remember watching the original version of this movie when I was a child.  Fond memories of that movie were primarily what made me want to watch this version of the film.

In the beginning of the film we see our protagonist Alexander Hartdegen getting ready to go our for the evening.  He is meeting his girlfriend Emma in the park where he proposes marriage to her.  Of course this proposal is cut short by a mugger who ends up accidentally killing Emma.

This of course drives Alexander into a fit of madness in which he designs the time machine so he can go back in time and save Emma.

I'll leave the details a bit fuzzy here on purpose as not to completely ruin the film for you.  Lets just say he realizes that you can't change the past, so he looks for answers in the future.  The future he finds is actually rather quite similar to our present, with a few extra gadgets.

I was very impressed by this film on every aspect.  The story was perhaps the best known part of the film has been redone on many major aspects but still holds the major message of the original movie.  The visual effects are top notch, as I have said before they allow you to suspend your disbelief and simply watch the film and follow the story.  Crappy effects have a rather negative effect on story as a whole, since you keep laughing at the bad special effects and not paying attention to the story line.

The acting was amazing as well, some of the best I have seen in my recent movie watching experiences.  The dialog was very natural and never felt forced or cheesy, which I like.  The stunts were very well done too.  You see people jumping outrageous lengths and heights but it never looks fake.  You just simply believe that it just happened and they filmed it.

I was actually very surprised that IMDB rated this movie so poorly.  While I'm sure it wasn't a box office success it was however a great story.  I suppose that the classics are sometimes the best.

If you have not yet seen this movie I would highly suggest it to you.  I'm sure that you are not as big of Sci-Fi geek as I am but it really is a good movie even if you don't particularly like Sci-Fi movies.  Hey even my wife liked it, and she is very particular with which movies she watches.

For my Steampunk friends the Time Machine is one very giant Steampunk machine indeed.  Leather seat wrapped in metal and gears.  When this thing starts to move it is a piece of art in motion, enjoy that.

So to the voting, I give this movie five out of five smiley Mike heads.

Trust me and just watch it, if you don't I will find you and give you a verbal smack down.

As always thanks for reading, feel free to share your experiences with this movie.  If you think I rated it too high let me know.  If you want to troll me and my blog feel free I'll probably delete your comment but at least I'll have my first comment then.