The Golden Compass (2007)

Director: Chris Weitz

Writer: Chris Weitz (Screenplay) Philip Pullman (Novel)

Starring: Nicole Kidman, Daniel Craig, Dakota Blue Richards, Ben Walker, Freddie Highmore, Ian McKellen, Eva Green, Sam Elliott

 

Plot: In a parallel universe, young Lyra Belacqua journeys to the far North to save her best friend and other kidnapped children from terrible experiments by a mysterious organization.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Been Here Seen This

 

Story: The Golden Compass starts in a world with parallel universes where the human spirits can walk next to humans in animal form known as daemons, with a Golden Compass being the only way to find the different universes. We meet young Lyra (Richards) who lives with her Uncle Lord Asriel (Craig) who is an adventurer that is seeking the Dust which can travel between universes.

With the children getting taken by Goblers Lyra in her high life promises to search for poor boy Roger’s (Walker). Lyra is chosen by Mrs Coulter (Kidman) to help with her research in the North which just so happens to be where Lord Asriel is heading, in what looks like a battle for the dust.

Learning that Mrs Coulter is behind the missing children Lyra teams up with a host of other characters in the Gyptians as they search for the children and her Uncle before Coulter’s research is complete.

 

Thoughts on The Golden Compass

 

Characters/PerformanceLyra is the type of leading child you will need for this type of film, she comes from a rich background, she is curious and brave. Mrs Coulter comes along as the villainous character that believes in the cause she is fighting for with Lord Asriel is the explorer looking to change the future. The rest of the characters do their part well as Lyra goes on her adventure.

Performance wise, Kidman and Craig both do a good job in their roles, but it is Richards that really struggles in the lead role, she is meant to come off posh but too often comes off a common which takes away from the character.

StoryThe story is one I have come to believe was butchered from the book, which when you watch you can see, it gets the basics correct but anything which involved developing a character sadly gets forgotten as the film unfolds. The story ends up becoming slightly messy and focuses on just doing action to cover the lack of story.

Adventure/Family/FantasyThe adventure side of this film should be clear, but it just shows one person’s adventure, I don’t feel the family could enjoy this movie but the fantasy world we find ourselves in does work well.

SettingsThe settings all look good with their own fancy way of saying countries we all know in the world just having slight twists on them.

Special EffectsMost of the special effects all work well, but there are moments which look pretty bad for the CGI.

Final ThoughtsIf you want a cliff hanger that never gets complete, well here is the film for you.

 

Overall: This seems like a solid start to the franchise but we will never see the end.

Rating

 

 

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Death Waits for No Man (2017)

Director: Armin Siljkovic

Writer: Armin Siljkovic (Screenplay)

Starring: Angelique Pretorius, Bradley Snedeker, Corey Rieger, Travis Myers, Barbara Scolaro

 

Plot: A neon art collector seduces a lone drifter into killing her abusive husband.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 22 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Edge of Your Seat Thriller

 

Story: Death Waits for No Man starts when a lone drifter and former soldier Uzal (Snedeker) finds himself in need of help to prevent trouble with the law, it is Lily (Pretorius) that offers him shelter, but she does have an alternative motivation.

Lily wants Uzal to help her kill her husband Sinclair (Rieger) after he abuses her and she wants the life insurance. When Sinclair arrives the tension ramps up and the night could go in any direction for Uzal.

 

Thoughts on Death Waits for No Man

 

Characters – Lily is the abused wife that blackmails Uzal into helping her kill her husband, she does have control over the men being able to seduce them into doing what she wants. Uzal is a soldier who is drifting through this small town, but he ends up in the middle of a battle for control between the husband and wife. Sinclair is the unstable former soldier who wants to become a police officer, he uses he know how to stay one step ahead of the plan.

PerformancesThe three leads all give good performances through the whole film are good because you are dragged into this story because of the performance that keep us on the edge of our seats through the film.

StoryThe story is simple, wife wants strange to kill her husband, it does become complicate when the battle to stay ahead of the other’s plan come through but in the end it is a single location, real time film that keeps us guessing to see if the twists will come through the film. There isn’t too much more to the story, it never becomes overly complicated through the way.

ThrillerThis film does keep you on the edge of your seat throughout, you want to see where each scene will go next.

SettingsOnce they arrive in the house, the rest of the film takes place in the home which only ramps up the tension the film creates.


Scene of the Movie –
The fall out.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Sometimes things are over teased.

Final ThoughtsThis is a thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat from the start to the finish.

 

Overall: Edge of your seat thriller.

Rating

 

 

2017 Watched List Part 28

2017 Movie Watched List

Movie Watched list are always interesting to read to see what order people watch films in, over the past two years I have started doing watched lists with two different styles to talk about the over 1000 movies I had seen. This year I decided to mix it up once more. This time I will be listing the films in 10 like before and then picking just my favourites on a couple of subject’s I am picking favourites over best because sometimes the best films are difficult re-watches which is why I like the term favourite.

Here is 271 – 280

1.    Beneath the Planet of the Apes

2.    Escape from the Planet of the Apes

3.    King Arthur: Legend of the Sword

4.    Conquest of the Planet of the Apes

5.    Battle for the Planet of the Apes

6.    American Mummy

7.    Alien: Resurrection

8.    Captive

9.    Casino

10. Chef

Favourite Film
Chef

This was a feel-good comedy that shows us different styles of cooking through America, it also has a great cast.

Worst Film
American Mummy

I like the subject but I couldn’t help but find this film feel messy throughout.

Any other question you would like to know about the selection feel free to leave a comment and I will answer or maybe even add to future Watched Lists.

Transformers: The Last Knight (2017)

Director: Michael Bay

Writer: Art Marcum, Matt Holloway, Ken Nolan (Screenplay) Akiva Goldsman, Art Marcum, Matt Holloway, Ken Nolan (Story)

Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Anthony Hopkins, Josh Duhamel, Laura Haddock, Santiago Cabrera, Isabela Moner, Stanley Tucci

 

Plot: Humans and Transformers are at war, Optimus Prime is gone. The key to saving our future lies buried in the secrets of the past, in the hidden history of Transformers on Earth.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Mad Action Film

 

Story: Transformers: The Last Knight starts as we learn about the ancient battles the English had where the Transformers helped Merlin (Tucci) win the battle. The world has now banned from most places on the Earth but in Cuba they are still welcomed. Optimus Prime is gone and the Transformers continue to arrival. Cade Yeager (Wahlberg) continues to protect the Transformers with Colonel William Lennox (Duhamel) refuses let the good Autobots from being captured but the impending return of Megatron brings the threats to Earth.

Meanwhile in England Sir Edmund Burton (Hopkins) is preparing for the final battle, Vivian Wembley (Haddock) doesn’t believe in the legends of King Arthur and her tours prove what it could be. On Cybertron Optimus Prime wants to rebuild his home planet which means returning to Earth to find an ancient Staff giving to Merlin.

Cade finds himself teaming up with Vivian in the middle of the battle between the Decepticons, Autobots and the Government as Cybertron heads towards Earth which would cause the end of the world.

 

Thoughts on Transformers: The Last Knight

 

Characters/PerformanceCade Yeager is now an outlaw hiding the Autobots in a junkyard, here he lives a quiet life but when a new threat heads toward Earth he finds himself being selected as the Last Knight that can fight to save the Earth. Sir Edmund Burton is the guardian of the secrets of the Transformers, he fills in all the gaps as to what is happening as well as bringing together the team. Vivian Wembley is an anti-believer in the history of King Arthur but when she learns she is the last descendant of Merlin she must work with Cade to save the Earth. Vivian is added for a new love interest for Cade and the high educated between the two.

We have the military characters which includes the returning Colonel Lennox, who just do military stuff and mostly get in the way. The King Arthur and Merlin figure who just re-tell the story we know. We have the comic relief with Izabella, Jimmy and many of the Transformers but we never get too close to any of the characters.

The performances are what you have come to expect, Wahlberg is good in the leading role even if he can look lost at times he has the charisma to lead the films, Laura Haddock adds class with her performance by not only being the stunning woman but a smart one, and Anthony Hopkins enjoys the chance to have fun in a mega blockbuster.

StoryThe Transformers storylines are never the most in detail stories, we know this by now on film number 5. We mix into the Transformers story King Arthur legend, well it is new and does continue to world build and it is as nonsense as you expect for a Transformers film because if we are being honest the story isn’t the most important part of the film.

Action/Adventure/Sci-FiThe action is massive once more with Transformer battles in a giant scale and the city-wide battles and even ocean size battles being a massive experience. The adventure takes across the world again to save the world from not only Megatron but Cybertron this time. The sci-fi side does bring us into a world of giant robots that can be vehicles in a giant space battle.

SettingsWe have a couple of settings, we see how Chicago still devastated by the effects of the previous films, the hidden locations of Cade at the Autobots, we also have London being used for the chase sequences and while this isn’t anything new it is a fun watch, but in the end, we just use locations of iconic landmarks.

Special EffectsThe effects for the battles are great throughout the film bring us into the story to enjoy the massive over the top battles.

Final ThoughtsThis is a film that always gets criticized because it doesn’t have the most intense storyline but the reality is this is one franchise that is all about the massive action sequences that take away of beliefs needed for the world of Transformers.

 

Overall: Bonkers, Enjoyable, nonsense action film

Rating

 

 

Opinion Battles Results Favourite Hitchcock Movie

Opinion Battles Results

Favourite Hitchcock Movie

This round we have had an excellent selection of Hitchcock Movies but just which one was the most popular?

3rd

Choice – The Birds

Players – Diana

Points – 3

2nd

Choice – Rear Window

Players – Table 9 Mutant, Tom

Points – 6

1st

Choice – Psycho

Players – Darren

Points – 12

If you want to take part in the next round, we are looking at favourite TV Show to Movie

send you choices to moviereviews101@yahoo.co.uk.

Closing Date – Saturday 30th September 2017

Here is the table, (Drew – Drew’s Movie Reviews, Kim – Tranquil Dreams, J – Film & Nuance, Cinema Parrot Disco, Rob – Movie Rob, Damien Riley – Riley Film Reviews, Emma – Emma Explains It All, S.G. Liput – Rhyme and Reason, Rachel – 54 Disney Reviews, Tom – Plain Simple Tom Reviews, Kira – Film and Tv 101, Allie – Often Off Topic, Ben – Views From The Sofa, Mike – screenkickermovies.com, Carl Wonders – Listening to Film) can anyone take this league by storm like last year?