Glass (2019)

Director: M Night Shyamalan

Writer: M Night Shyamalan (Screenplay)

Starring: Bruce Willis, Samuel L Jackson, James McAvoy, Sarah Paulson, Anya Taylor-Joy, Luke Kirby, Spencer Treat Clark

 

Plot: Security guard David Dunn uses his supernatural abilities to track Kevin Wendell Crumb, a disturbed man who has twenty-four personalities.


Tagline – You Cannot Contain What You Are.

Runtime: 2 Hours 9 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Wonderful Concept

 

Story: Glass starts not long after the events from Split where Kevin (McAvoy) and his multiple personalities on the run from the law, continuing his hunt for the Beast, David Dunn (Willis) branded the Overseer works with his son Joseph (Clark) to locate him. Once he locates him the fight, before becoming interrupted by Dr Ellie Staple (Paulson) and the authorities.

Ellie takes the two to a hospital to study their belief they are from comics, with Elijah (Jackson) joining them as they must learn the truth about what they are capable of and what is in the world.

 

Thoughts on Glass

 

Characters – Kevin being the first identity of the multiple personality man, he has mixed amount personalities, who are trying to gain control for moments as he is just trying to deal with his own personal problems, with The Beast being the most deadly of all of the personalities. David Dunn is now wanted by the authorities because of his vigilante behaviour, he works with his son now and they help people indeed, including the latest victims of Kevin. He remains super strong and becomes the first person the Beast can’t defeat instantly. Elijah or Mr Glass remains locked up for his actions, he is too intelligent to keep awake, but he is always planning, he puts everything into motion as he gets to play the puppet master once again. Dr Ellie Staple has bought the men together as she searches for the truth about their beliefs, she wants to help them and stop them believing they are form a comic book. Casey returns and it is her relationship with certain personalities of Kevin that helps us learn more about him.

PerformancesThe performance from James McAvoy does shine through, he does get to bring even more of the personalities out in this one, being able to switch between them all effortless. Bruce Willis gives one of his best modern day performances, with this character feeling like an older version of the one we saw in Unbreakable. Samuel L Jackson shines to with his character doing a lot of his acting through his facial expression, while get the cold delivery of his lines when it is his time. Sarah Paulson is a welcome addition to this universe and never looks out of place, though it does feel like Anya Taylor-Joy doesn’t get enough screen time in this film.

StoryThe story brings the three figures from Unbreakable and Split together in what is a superhero movie about not being superheroes, just being genetically different or it being in your head. The idea that we are trying to cure these men does seem to borrow heavily from X-Men and many of their storylines. One of the biggest problems with this story is that you HAVE to see the previous two films to truly understand everything that goes down, though it does seem to forget certain things that happened in the past too. The going through the could this be in their head is interesting, only for it to not be possible because we have seen what they are capable of, it feels like this aspect is a film behind. We do get the trademark from M Night which we know is coming, we are waiting for it and the question is can you figure it out? In a Superhero heavy market this does feel original enough bring a human touch to what has been happening.

Mystery/Sci-FiThe mystery in this film comes from just why have they been bought together, which does get solved, which will surprise, the sci-fi side of the film comes from just seeing how the world has reacted to these advanced people.

SettingsWe stay in Philadelphia for this story, which is great because it contains the action to one city through the films, we spend most of the film in the hospital as the world unfolds between them all.


Scene of the Movie –
Beast vs Overseer 2.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The over used of the comic book metaphor.

Final ThoughtsThis is a wonderful competition of the trilogy that we didn’t know was coming, it ties everything together, has brilliant performance and keeps us guessing throughout.

 

Overall: Tense conclusion to the saga.

Rating

 

 

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Tales of Frankenstein (2018)

Director: Donald F Glut

Writer: Donald F Glut (Screenplay)

Starring: John Blyth Barrymore, Buddy Daniels Friedman, Jim Tavare, Tatiana DeKhtyar, Len Wein, Jamisin Matthews

 

Plot: Based upon four of writer-director Donald F. Glut’s short stories published in his book TALES OF FRANKENSTEIN: “My Creation, My Beloved” (a deformed descendant of Victor Frankenstein creates the perfect man and woman), “Crawler from the Grave” (another Frankenstein descendant’s disembodied, plague-infected arm returns from the grave for revenge), “Madhouse of Death” (a private detective winds up in an old dark house filled with loonies…and a gorilla) and “Dr. Karnstein’s Creation” (a mad doctor creates a monster in vampire-haunted Transylvania – with gruesomely unexpected results).

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 52 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Anthology

 

Story: Tales of Frankenstein starts as we learn that we are going to be learning about four different relatives of Victor Frankenstein, each chapter will be their own story, which we will get into more details below.

 

Thoughts on Tales of Frankenstein

 

My Creation, My Beloved – This story follows Gregore Frankenstein (Friedman) the cousin to Victor, he doesn’t want to follow in his cousin’s footsteps, but when is love dies, he can’t help by go down the same path, when he tries to bring her back to life. This is a simple and effective introduction to what we are going to be going through, it does enough to be original, while borrow the basics from the original story, showing how love can drive the most brilliant minded people to make rash decisions.

Crawler from the GraveVincent (Barrymore) is a neighbour to Helmut (Wein) who uses his brains to try and cure himself, Vincent wants the jewellery that Helmut has, wanting to buy it after he passes, he soon learns the price of chasing from the dead. This one plays into the ideas that greed will guide people to make mistakes they will always end up paying for, the moments off effects are weaker here which does take away from elements of the ideas in the story.

Madhouse of DeathWe head to LA here, with Jack Anvil (Matthews) who breaks down outside the home of Dr Mortality (Novak), who has bigger plans for Jack, told in a noir style with Jack being a private investigator, it is left to see if he is the one Mortality is waiting for. The noir style to this one does make it standout from the rest, which does work, it does feel like one that could be a full movie too, which is what we focus on when it comes to the short stories.

Dr Karnstein’s CreationThe final chapter takes us to Dr Karnstein (Tavare) in Transylvania who recruits Carl (Hoffmeister) to be his assistant so that he can continue the work of Victor Frankenstein, he will learn that his obsession will be more difficult that he could ever imagine. This chapter brings us the most comedy with how everything unfold which brings us to a nice conclusion to this anthology.

Comedy/HorrorThe comedy seems to be strongest in one of the four stories, it doesn’t come as thick and fat as you would hope though, the horror continues the ideas of what Frankenstein’s legacy once gave us, seeing how his family tree was involved with similar stories.

SettingsEach setting is a different time in history between when the first Frankenstein story happened, right up to the mid 1950s, this does help make each story feel unique even with the connections to the bigger picture.

Special EffectsThe effects here are a mixed bag because most of the Dr Karnstein effects looking the best, while Crawling from the Grave seems to have weaker effects throughout.


Scene of the Movie –
Carl’s true identity.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Crawling from the Grave is the slowest story involved here.

Final ThoughtsThis is a nice fun series of Frankenstein stories, showing how the legacy could easily continue without just being another remake.

 

Overall: Frankenstein Anthology films to enjoy.

Rating

 

 

ABC Film Challenge – Best of 2018 – R – Ready Player One (2018) Movie Rob’s Pick

Head over to Movie Rob’s to read his many reviews

“In the form of my avatar, Anorak the all knowing. I created three keys. Three hidden challenges test worthy traits, revealing three hidden keys to three magic gates. And those with the skill to survive these strengths will reach the end, where the prize awaits.” – Anorak

Number of Times Seen – 2 (2 Apr 2018 and 13 Jan 2019)

Link to original review – Here

Brief Synopsis – In the near-future where most people in the world spend their time in a virtual on-line world, a teenager tries to win a complex contest created by the now deceased creator of the virtual world.

My Take on it – When thinking of my favorite films from the year, this is the first one that popped into my head and I immediately knew that I wanted to revisit it again both by re-reading the novel and re-watching the film.

I was once again blown away by both because they do such a great job of translating Ernest Cline’s superb novel to the screen.

The fact that the novel and the movie are the same story yet choose different paths to reach the same place is amazing.

The tasks in both are different but that has so much to do with the fact that some of the scenes in the book would be quite tedious on screen but were riveting on the page.

Both storylines run parallel to one another and manage to give us something so unique and complex that it remains poignant in either format.

The characters are great and the manage to build such a great visual platform for us to envision this future world that they created for us.

This film is filled with lots and lots of 80’s and 90’s nostalgia and they are able to get us into the mindset of that era so easily.

The music used on the soundtrack does just that and gives us the pure 80’s beat even in a science fiction futuristic world while keeping the viewer still waxing for 80’s nostalgia the whole way through.

Love the way that the message of the film builds so much on the message of the book and finds a way to personalize it for the viewer.

There is no question in my mind that this film will be quite high on my Top Ten Films of 2018.

Bottom Line – Such an amazing adaptation of Cline’s novel.  The fact that the novel and film are so much the same, yet very different is amazing because they are able to build a visually sound storyline that runs parallel to the written version which could possibly never be made due to its complexity. The characters are great and they get the entire pop-culture nostalgia of the 80’s and 90’s so right.  This is done via references but also via the music used n the soundtrack that helps the viewer wax nostalgia for the days of the 80’s. The film has such a poignant message that builds on the message of the book and in some ways even brings it more personally t the viewer.  One of the best film of the year by far. Highly Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia –  Ready Player One, as in the book, pays homage to popular culture from various time periods, mainly the 1970s and 1980s but also extending to the 1990s, 2000s, and 2010s; reviewers have identified well over a hundred references to films, television shows, music, toys, video games, anime and comics from these eras. Cline did not have any issues with these copyrighted elements when he published the book, but was aware that securing all necessary rights would be a major obstacle for a film adaptation. This task was eventually made easier thanks to Spielberg’s reputation in the film industry. Spielberg and producer Kristie Macosko Krieger spent several years securing the rights for the copyrighted elements used in the film long before filming began, knowing that some scenes would not be possible without certain copyrighted elements. In the end, Spielberg estimated that they managed to get about 80% of the copyrighted elements they desired, noting that in some cases, the filmmakers were able to secure rights for some but not all the characters they wanted. In negotiating with Warner Bros., they could not secure Close Encounters of the Third Kind from Columbia Pictures, despite the latter being one of Spielberg’s first films as director. Blade Runner, which was integral to the plot of the book, was off-limits as Blade Runner 2049 was in production at the same time as Ready Player One; as a replacement, the creative team had the players play through the events of The Shining, which Spielberg was able to secure the rights to as an homage to his friend Stanley Kubrick. While Cline’s original work heavily used the character of Ultraman, the rights over the character were still under legal dispute, requiring them to replace Ultraman with the titular robot from The Iron Giant and RX-78-2 Gundam. Spielberg recognized that his past films were a significant part of the 1980s popular culture cited in the book, and to avoid being accused of “vanity”, he opted to remove many of the references to his own work. Cline stated that he believed Spielberg wanted to avoid self-references to films he directed, due to the criticism he received for his film 1941, which lampooned his own previous works Jaws and Duel. Cline said he had to convince Spielberg to include some iconic elements, such as the DeLorean time machine from Back to the Future, which Spielberg conceded as the film was one he produced rather than directed. Spielberg also allowed the Tyrannosaurus rex from his own Jurassic Park to be included. Cline also asked ILM to include a reference to Last Action Hero, one of Penn’s first screenplays, without Penn’s knowledge. (From IMDB)

Rating – Oscar Worthy (9/10) (slight downgrade from original review)

ABC Film Challenge – Favourite Films of 2018 – R – Robin Williams Come Into My Mind

 ABC Film Challenge

Favourite Films of 2018

R

Robin Williams Come Into My Mind

Why I’ve Picked this choiceRobin Williams is easily one of my favourite actors and people, we have heard many stories about him and after his tragic death the world was shaken. In this documentary we get to learn about big moments in his career and life, his demons, he outlet and what eventually took him. He left a legacy of happiness and made the world a better place, anything that showed us just how good of a person he was, should be watched.