At First Light (2018) Movie Review

Director: Jason Stone

Writer: Jason Stone, Andrew C Erin (Screenplay)

Starring: Stefanie Scott, Theodore Pellerin, Said Taghmaoui, Percy Hynes White, Kate Burton, Janet-Laine Green

Plot: Alex is floating unconscious in a lake when light from a UFO of light saves her by enhancing her abilities such as telekinesis and healing power. Her friend Sean helps her. The authorities want her – not just for stealing a police car.

Tagline – Where the light ends, the human journey begins.

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Never Really Gets Going

Story: At First Light starts as we meet teenager Sean (Pellerin) who looks after his little brother Oscar (White), while caring for his grandma (Green), he outlets are a party with friends, where he often wonders what could have been with Alex (Scott).

This latest night Alex finds herself unconscious in a waterhole, not remember anything about herself, she calls Sean and with her new abilities, the two go on the run to try and figure out what has happened to her, with scientists trying to track her down.

Thoughts on At First Light

Characters – Alex is a girl from town that at a party ends up unconscious in the local reservoir, waking up she doesn’t remember a thing, left with just a phone number, she looks for help from Sean, only to learn of new abilities that she has acquired, which are used to try and escape threats that come their way. Sean has been caring for his bother and grandmother, he is almost getting to the stage where he is going to accept, he doesn’t have much of a future, with his long term crush Alex moving further away from him. He ends up helping her after her incident, going on the run with her risking everything to try and save her. Cal is a stranger that offers the two help with their journey to escape, he fills in most of the blanks more than anything. We do meet most of the people trying to stop the pair, be it friends, family or scientists along the way.

PerformancesStefanie Scott and Theodore Pellerin both do what they can with their roles, they are great with the running way aspect of the story, but don’t get enough to work with when the sci-fi elements come to life. Said Taghmaoui is fun as the one that needs to fill in the gaps, only we don’t see enough of him.

StoryThe story here follows two old friends that go on the run after an incident which could change the world as they look to uncover the truth. This is a story that is very ambitious one that doesn’t seem to give enough away along the way, which does disappoint by the end of the story. The whole running away between two old friends and potential lovers is the strongest part of the film, when it comes to the science, nothing really gets going, with more questions than answers by the end. It does also highlight the poverty line, with anything being about hope, which is shown well.

Sci-FiThe sci-fi side of the film is kept away from us for large parts of the film, it is key to everything happening, though we don’t learn everything that we could have seen.

SettingsThe settings show us how close to the poverty line the family is and how going on the run is only going to help the two look for answers.

Special EffectsThe effects in the film are solid for when they are used, only they aren’t used enough for what is being planned.

Scene of the Movie – The closing.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – We don’t get deep enough into the sci-fi of the film.

Final Thoughts This is a sci-fi film filled with ambition, only it doesn’t unlock everything enough, which only disappoints us by the end.

Overall: Disappoints.

ABC Film Challenge – Animation – R – Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018) Movie Review

Director: Phil Johnston, Rich Moore

Writer: Phil Johnston, Pamela Ribon (Screenplay) Rich Moore, Phil Johnston, Jim Reardon, Pamela Ribon, Josie Trinidad (Story)

Starring: (Voice Talents) John C Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Gal Gadot, Taraji P Henson, Jack McBrayer, Jane Lynch, Alan Tudyk

Plot: Six years after the events of “Wreck-It Ralph,” Ralph and Vanellope, now friends, discover a wi-fi router in their arcade, leading them into a new adventure.

Tagline – Who broke the internet?

Runtime: 1 Hour 52 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Serious Moments Shine, the Rest is Just Here

Story: Ralph Breaks the Internet starts as Ralph and Vanellope are best friends working in the arcade by day, travelling through the games by night, with Ralph happy with life and Vanellope getting tired of the same tracks, Ralph tries to help her by making a new track, which only ends up breaking Sugar Rush, forcing the residents of the game to search for new homes.

Ralph wanting to fix the problem, heads to the internet to go to Ebay to get a new steering wheel for the game, only to cause more damage than he caused in the first place, can they navigate the internet in time.

Thoughts on Ralph Breaks the Internet

Characters – Ralph is still happy in his video game and the arcade where he spends time with Vanellope exploring through the games, until he decides to help Vanellope improve her game, only causing more problems breaking her game. Ralph heads to the internet to try and fic the problems he once caused. Vanellope is getting tired of her game with the same tracks, which sees Ralph trying to create her a new track, this breaks her game and heading to the internet she finds a new lease for life and competition she has always been looking for on the track. Shank is the cool racer from Slaughter Race, she offers Vanellope competition on the track and she also enjoys the competition from her. Yesss is the algorithm that helps Ralph become an internet sensation that is needed to make the money to get the steering wheel.

StoryThe story show how Ralph has broken Sugar Rush once again, only this time he looks to the internet for a fix, where he must learn to navigate the internet to save the game. This story does open up the world of gaming to new levels for the characters, where one must adapt to change, while the other embraces it. This can clearly be used to reflect different generations trying to deal with people’s dreams, while having plenty of message about how to use the internet, because however much good there is on there, we will see the bad trying to ruin the best parts of it. When it comes to standing up to the first movie, this story might have the heart of the first one, but it lacks the flow the first one had.

Adventure/ComedyThe adventure side of this film does see both Ralph and Vanellope experiencing a new world, one that is bigger than they ever imagined, while one embraces it the other doesn’t. the comedy doesn’t hit as well as the first one, with most turning to references that if you don’t understand, you might not get the joke.

SettingsThe idea of how to show the size of the internet is interesting showing how the number of people will get lost and act like sheep through it.

AnimationThe animation is always a beautiful visual for the film, it never looks out of place and does use different styles for different games too.

Scene of the Movie – The truth about the internet.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – How does Vanellope get out of her game now?

Final Thoughts This is a solid enough sequel that once again is covered in a serious issues with mental health and how the internet can make things more difficult if you don’t learn the problems it can cause.

Overall: Animation sequel 101