Ghosts of Mars (2001)

logoDirector: John Carpenter

Writer: Larry Sulkis, John Carpenter (Screenplay)

Starring: Natasha Henstridge, Ice Cube, Jason Statham, Clea DuVall, Pam Grier, Joanna Cassidy, Richard Cetrone, Rosemary Forsyth, Liam Waite

 

Plot: Years in the future, a Martian police unit is sent to pick up a highly dangerous criminal at a remote mining post. Upon arrival, the cops find that the post has become a charnel house.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Standard Sci-fi Horror

 

Story: Ghosts of Mars starts by showing a ghost train returning from a mining community Lieutenant Melanie Ballard (Henstridge) is the only survivor from mission. Melanie is going to be telling us the story now, her story starts by showing us her team who are sent to pick up a prisoner. Her team comprises of Sgt Jericho Butler (Statham), Bashira Kincaid (DuVall), Commander Braddock (Grier) and Descanso (Waite), they have been sent to pick up Desolation Williams (Cube).

The small Martian community at Shinning Canyons is abandoned splitting up they look for answers. The teams both find remains of humans and the prisoners in their cells. Williams was arrested in suspicion of killing people the very same way the communities were found in. the community keeps throwing out surprises with people turning up out of nowhere and the Commander disappears.  It does appear the unit might not be completely alone but after Williams escapes they stay focused on trying to re-catch him, but they should be more worried about the other people that keep turning up out of nowhere, the very people who have become possessed by the ghosts of Mars.

The remaining people will have will have to team up with the prisoners to take on an army of possessed who will do horrific things to them if they get caught. We do end up learning of the origin of the possession.

Ghosts of Mars is a story be told which then has short stories being told which keeps happening over and over again, it turns into a giant game of Chinese whispers. Taking that point away we do end up with a very simple survival horror in space. We have the authority character who doesn’t always play by the rules teaming up with the criminal to survive and the old you can go this time moment. This is turning into a very generic sounding story and the truth is that is all it is. (5/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Natasha Henstridge: Lieutenant Melanie Ballard who is the lone survivor on the abandoned train, who is telling the story to her superiors, she has to take control of the situation while dealing with her own problems with addiction and becomes the reluctant hero of the story. Natasha does a solid job still holding onto her sci-fi fame at the time. (6/10)

 melanie

Ice Cube: Desolation Williams a criminal who the team is transferring, but when the circumstances change he has to team up with those same people to make it out alive. Ice does a solid job but showed he isn’t the power force Jason was going to becoming. (6/10)

cube

Jason Statham: Sgt Jericho Butler new cocky member of the team who can unlock anything as well as thinking he is god’s gift to woman. Jason does a good job in this supporting role showing that he was always going to be more of the star. (7/10)

 

Support Cast: Ghosts of Mars has a supporting cast that includes fellow soldiers, prisoners and a scientist who all help uncover what has happened, also let’s not forget about all the possessed people who are after them.

monsters

Director Review: John Carpenter – John doesn’t reach the levels you would expect from one of his films, we would be used to seeing a lot higher standard. (5/10)

 

Action: Ghosts of Mars has plenty of fights, mixing up the combat as the film unfolds. (8/10)

Horror: Ghosts of Mars doesn’t reach any solid levels of horror through the film. (3/10)

Sci-Fi: Ghosts of Mars enters into the sci-fi world well taking us to Mars for the story. (8/10)

Settings: Ghosts of Mars is set on Mars which makes for a good setting it also gives us an isolated setting. (8/10)
Special Effects
: Ghosts of Mars doesn’t end up using the best special effects. (5/10)

Suggestion: Ghosts of Mars is one for the die hard Carpenter fans to watch it might also be enjoyed by the sci-fi fans. (Sci-Fi Try)

 

Best Part: The Battles are good.

Worst Part: The talking is boring.

Action Scene Of The Film: The escape.

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: It is left open for one, but it is unlikely to happen.

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $14 Million

Budget: $28 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 38 Minutes

Tagline: It’s their planet… we are the aliens.

Trivia: Jason Statham was originally hired to play James “Desolation” Williams, but was replaced by Ice Cube for star power.

 

Overall: Easy to watch, harder to enjoy

Rating 55

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Rush Hour (1998)

logoDirector: Brett Ratner

Writer: Jim Kouf, Ross LaManna (Screenplay) Ross LaManna (Story)

Starring: Jackie Chan, Chris Tucker, Tom Wilkinson, Tzi Ma, Chris Penn, Ken Leung, Rex Linn, Elizabeth Pena, Philip Baker Hall, John Hawkes

 

Plot: Two cops team up to get back a kidnapped daughter.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Classic Entertainment

 

Story: Rush Hour starts by showing Officer Lee (Chan) closing a big case for his boss Consul Han (Ma) who is leaving the city in the hands of Griffin (Wilkinson). Moving to Los Angeles we meet Carter (Tucker) an undercover officer who shows he is all talk but capable of completing the job. Consul Han starting his new job in Los Angeles when his daughter is kidnapped, with the FBI involved Han wants his own man involved. This brings Lee over but when the FBI want to leave him out the picture they call the LAPD leading to Carter being put on the assignment as a punishment.

Carter talks too much believing that Lee doesn’t speak any English leading to the comedy tension between the two starting early. Carter and Lee being pushed off the case decide to look into the case on their own free will. They couple find themselves in the middle of the battle after Lee loses Carter. When it becomes apparent that Lee is going to be up against an old enemy Sang (Leung) it becomes clear that the kidnapping is personal.

Carter and Lee have to put aside their differences and go against the orders of the FBI to save the girl from the infamous yet elusive Juntao.

Rush Hour is a style of film that put together correctly works to high levels, Rush Hour reaches those levels with the brilliant pairing of Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker. The story is simple to follow and relies on the twos action to keep us entertained. It will go down as one of the last great buddy cop films because certain parts wouldn’t be accepted in the cinema nowadays. We get to see Tucker’s wise cracking joking spitting character mix with Chan’s all action character to give us a great blend of comedy and action that really keeps us fully entertained. (9/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Jackie Chan: Lee brilliant detective from China who gets bought to America to help find the kidnapped daughter, but once there he gets treated like a tourist. He ends up teaming up with the unlikely Carter to make for a great team when it comes to solving the kidnapping. Jackie is always going to give us great action scenes but moving his style into comedy worked perfectly here. (8/10)

 chan

Chris Tucker: Carter loud talking streetwise detective who’s against the books techniques lands him on babysitting duties with Lee. Carter’s connections do end up helping solve the kidnapping. Chris does a good job to create a character that you actually hate but love at the same time because when it comes down to business he always comes through. (8/10)

tucker

Tom Wilkinson: Griffin/Juntao we do see Griffin as a friend of the Consul but we do also see that he is the infamous Juntao who is the evil businessman. Tom gives a solid performance as the typical generic evil business man. (6/10)

 

Ken Leung: Sang the main henchman for Juntao, he ends up going up against Lee on multiple occasions always seeming escaping the duel. Ken does a good job but we are waiting for a battle between him and Lee which never happens. (7/10)

 

Support Cast: Rush Hour has a supporting cast that includes the FBI who are the typical stupid characters. The Consul and his family who play the victims well. We also have the typical henchman there to give Jackie Chan a chance to kick ass.

 

Director Review: Brett Ratner – Brett does a good job directing this action comedy that still feels fresh today over 15 years later. (8/10)

 

Action: Rush Hour has plenty of fight scenes, chase scenes and a giant shoot out at the end which all work well for the genre. (9/10)

Comedy: Rush Hour has plenty of laughs through the clashes in culture between the two leads. (8/10)

Thriller: Rush Hour doesn’t have the thriller level that the story could have but this is more about the comedy anyway. (5/10)

Chemistry: Rush Hour uses Chan and Tucker’s chemistry to make this film a stand out 90s film. (9/10)

Settings: Rush Hour LA always makes for a good setting but we don’t see any landmarks that make the settings truly memorable. (5/10)

Suggestion: Rush Hour has to really be seen at least once by everyone it has a great blend of action and comedy. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Restaurant fight scene.

Worst Part: Tucker can get annoying at times.

Action Scene Of The Film: Restaurant fight.

Funniest Scene: Lee breaks into the consul’s home.

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Has 2

Post Credits Scene: Bloopers through the credits.

Similar Too: 48 Hours

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $244 Million

Budget: $33 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 33 Minutes

Tagline: Pals Forever. If they can get past today.

Trivia: According to director Brett Ratner, this film is the first one released in the U.S. featuring Jackie Chan in an English-speaking role without any kind of dubbing. According to Ratner, before this film Chan always had his voice dubbed over in his English-speaking roles because of his uncertainty in speaking the language. For this film, however, Ratner convinced him to forgo the dubbing as it would lend to the authenticity of his character.

 

Overall: Buddy Cop Comedy Entertainment

Rating 80

New Releases – 27th March 2015

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water spongbob When a diabolical pirate above the sea steals the secret Krabby Patty formula, SpongeBob and his nemesis Plankton must team up in order to get it back.

My Guess for Rating – 0%
My Anticipation Rating – 0%
Will It Be Number One In UK? – No

Cinderella cinderella A live-action retelling of the classic fairy tale about a servant step-daughter who wins the heart of a prince.

My Guess for Rating – 60%
My Anticipation Rating – 50%
Will It Be Number One In UK? – No

Seventh Son seventh son Young Thomas is apprenticed to the local Spook to learn to fight evil spirits. His first great challenge comes when the powerful Mother Malkin escapes her confinement while the Spook is away.

My Guess for Rating – 60%
My Anticipation Rating – 50%
Will It Be Number One In UK? – No

Get Hard get hard When millionaire James King is nailed for fraud and bound for San Quentin, he turns to Darnell Lewis to prep him to go behind bars.

My Guess for Rating – 70%
My Anticipation Rating – 60%
Will It Be Number One In UK? – No

The Signal signal On a road trip, Nic and two friends are drawn to an isolated area by a computer genius. When everything suddenly goes dark, Nic regains consciousness – only to find himself in a waking nightmare.

My Guess for Rating – 70%
My Anticipation Rating – 80%
Will It Be Number One In UK? – No

Reclaim reclaim A desperate American couple discovers all is not what it seems when they uncover a high-stakes underground scam while traveling abroad. To expose the truth and get back to the U.S., they must risk their lives to save their daughter.

My Guess for Rating – 40%
My Anticipation Rating – 30%
Will It Be Number One In UK? – No

Movie Reviews 101 Pick of the Week – The Signal

Movie Reviews 101 Would Like To Hear From You

Hello everyone this is Darren the main author for Movie Reviews 101.

I would like to thank everyone who reads, likes and comments on my posts, but I would like to make things grow on here and would like to ask you for help.

Every weekend I do a couple of reviews focused around certain stars, directors or franchises.

What I would like to be able to do is get more reviews and opinions from other people over these weekends, if you are interested in joining in email moviereviews101@yahoo.co.uk or leave a comment below.

Thanks for taking time to read and I hope I hear from you soon.

Trailer Alert – The Frame

Plot – Two strangers find their lives colliding in an impossible way. Alex is a methodical cargo thief working for a dangerous cartel. Sam is a determined paramedic trying to save the world while running from her past.

Release Date:  21 November 2014

Stars:

  • David Carranza, Tiffany Mualem

Director: Jamin Winans

Highlight of the Trailer: The unique idea really sales this film.

What Looks Good? The concept of being stuck inside another world.

What Looks Bad? Small cost, no big name cast doesn’t help.

Summary: The Frame does look like an interesting film that really seemed to go under the radar with plenty of twists that could happen.

Questions:

Will I Be Watching? Yes

Will You Be Watching?

My Anticipation Rating – 80%

My Guess Rating – 70%

Will It Be Number One In UK? – No