Atlantic Rim: Resurrection (2018)

Director: Jared Cohn

Writer: Geoff Meed (Screenplay)

Starring: Steve Richard Harris, Xavi Israel, Jenna Enns, Terry Woodberry, Paul Logan, Lindsay Eston, Michael Marcel

 

Plot: Los Angeles is under attack by monsters. The mechs attempting to fight them off are better armed than their precursors, but so are the creatures.


Tagline – Metal vs Monster

Runtime: 1 Hour 26 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Solid Background Movie

 

Story: Atlantic Rim: Resurrection starts after the first attack on America, the one they thought they had won. Now the monsters are back and Dr Roth (Harris) is forced out of his hiding to prepare for the next attack by making the robots bigger and stronger like the monsters have become.

When the attacks start happening, Dr Horowitz (Enns) must work with Dr Roth to make the robots work for General Worthington (Woodberry). The battle to save the residents of LA is on now.

 

Thoughts on Atlantic Rim: Resurrection

 

Characters – Dr Roth is the mastermind behind the defence robots, he has built the system to make them effective and safe, when the monsters return, he needs to build it back from scratch after it has been changed, he won’t let people die for no reason. Russo is one of the soldiers bought in to help with the attack. Dr Horowitz is the lady behind the updates, she believes her system would make things more efficient. General Worthington is controlling the operations to make the mission a success as the new threat arrives.

PerformancesThe acting, well this is the beginning of the negatives of which there are going to be a few, nobody steps up to be a believable character in the film making everything seem out of place with the reactions throughout the film.

StoryThe story here is a rip off from the Pacific Rim 2 Uprising storyline, so if you have seen that movie, you know the story. Like what I praised in Pacific Rim 2, the idea of the aftermath and return of the monsters is a plus, this does also do enough to be original with how the final act goes in. This story does what it needs to do without being anything overly challenge to watch.

Action/Sci-FiThe action is monsters vs robots, which entertains but never feels overly fresh. We know the sci-fi world we are entering which is fine and gets everything right.

SettingsThe film is set in LA, but we never get to feel like any actual destruction is happen away from the characters, no mass panics or anything, come on this is LA.

Special EffectsThe effects reflect the budget and to be fair they are on the level we know and don’t seem terrible.


Scene of the Movie –
The new threat.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Not seeing anything going on outside our characters.

Final ThoughtsThis is another one of the low budget rip offs from the blockbusters we are seeing, for the budgets these films have, you can get enough enjoyment out of them.

 

Overall: Solid low budget blockbuster rip off.

Rating

 

 

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The Jurassic Dead (2018)

Director: Milko Davis, Thomas Martwick

Writer: Milko Davis, Michele Pacitto (Screenplay))

Starring: Matt Block, Cooper Elliott, Ben Johnson, Mia Klosterman, Adam Singer, Ruselis Aumeen Perry, Andy Haman, Raquel Pennington

 

Plot: A cracked scientist aligns with the Axis of Evil to bring down the US of A with EMP blasts, toxic zombification gas and an unleashing of the ultimate undead killing monstrosity — the Z-REX. When a hot-wired militia squad and a crew of college hipsters are thrown together to do something about it, chaotic Predator-Thunder action runs amok.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 22 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Not As Good as You Would Imagine

 

Story: The Jurassic Dead starts when Dr Borge (Elliott) unleashes his own pathogen that can bring the dead back to life, the five-person military team Duque (Haman), Cuchilla (Pennington), Stick (Perry), Swat (Gonzzalez) and Spivey (Le Page) are being sent to clear out an unground base Dr Borge has occupied.

When they are joined by a group of college students Gunnar (Johnson), Sadie (Klosterman), Cameron (Singer) and Roxanne (Goeke) who become stranded in the desert, the two groups learn that Dr Borge has been working on, a Z-Rex and zombified T-Rex.

 

Thoughts on The Jurassic Dead

 

Characters – Duque is the leader of the military unit, he will go in first against any threat, be it human or dinosaur and show his dominance in combat. He is your cigar chopping, sunglass wearing figure you see in nearly alpha male military leader. The rest of his unit fill the generic figures we have come to know, the loose cannon, the calm one and the weapons expert. On the student side of things we have the dumb jock, the dippy blonde, the stoner geek and the rebellious one, they fill the clichés the way you would expect.

PerformancesThe performances here are not at the highest level, mostly because we have actors just starting out in the business or Andy Haman from bodybuilding and Raquel Pennington from UFC, no one is terrible, but on the other hand no one really stands out as being great in this film, which is fine because it is people fight a dinosaur and zombies.

StoryThe story here follows a military team and a group of students that end up in a secret bunker battling an evil scientist and his undead dinosaur. While this is a story that fills the boxes for what I enjoy watching in the brain off and enjoy movie, it would be fair the story is pretty shallow and doesn’t offer everything it should do. It does feel generic with how the events unfold even if the idea of undead dinosaur is original.

Action/Horror/Sci-FiThe action in the film goes down to plenty of guns shooting at dinosaurs and the big finale. The horror looks at the idea that dinosaurs are looking to eat people and even turn them into zombies. The idea of undead dinosaurs is a sci-fi ABC which works.

SettingsMost of the film takes place in the bunker which keeps the action contained with no escape.

Special EffectsThe effects are mixed, the practical effects are good enough, but when the CGI gets bought in things go downhill.


Scene of the Movie –
The first dinosaur appearance.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The CGI moments in the close of the film.

Final ThoughtsThis is a fun easy to watch film, it doesn’t have enough dinosaurs for my liking.

 

Overall: Undead dinosaurs movie fun.

Rating

 

 

Franchise Weekend – Spiderman (2002)

Director: Sam Raimi

Writer: David Koepp (Screenplay) Stan Lee, Steve Ditko (Comic Book)

Starring: Tobey Maguire, Willem Dafoe, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, Cliff Robertson, Rosemary Harris, J.K. Simmons

 

Plot: When bitten by a genetically modified spider, a nerdy, shy, and awkward high school student gains spider-like abilities that he eventually must use to fight evil as a superhero after tragedy befalls his family.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Truly Enjoyable Spiderman Movie

 

Story: Spider-Man starts as we meet high school student Peter Parker (Maguire), he only had one friend at school and that is over privileged Harry Osborn (Franco) and his high school crush Mary Jane (Dunst) attending a field trip at science laboratory where Peter gets bitten by one of the spiders.

The next day Peter finds himself stronger and more aware than ever, he has gained the spider skills, Peter uses his time to learn his abilities, but when his Uncle Ben (Robertson) becomes a victim of crime, Peter becomes Spiderman protecting New York City from the criminals.

With high school finished Peter and Harry move to New York, where they find jobs, but Peter has been fighting crime become front page news. Harry’s father Norman a CEO at Oscorp determined to make the most money unleashes the Green Goblin on the city, giving Spiderman his first opponent that will tests his abilities.

 

Thoughts on Spider-Man

 

Characters – Peter Parker is the socially awkward high school outcast, he does have the brains to become anything but when he gets bitten he becomes Spiderman where he starts to fight to protect his city after losing his Uncle. Norman Osborn is the career driven genius that will go to any lengths to be the leading developer in government technology, but when he loses his way, he goes out to stop anyone with his Green Goblin persona. Harry is Peter’s best friend and son of Norman, he watches how everything unfolds but also starts dating Mary Jane. Mary Jane is the high school crush of Peter, she does stick up for him as they share the same dreams.

PerformanceTobey Maguire is great in this leading role showing the innocence side of Peter but away from the high school age. Kirsten Dunst is a beautiful Mary Jane and while mostly the damsel in distress does give us a good performance. James Franco showed us all the potential he has started to show us in this role. Willem Dafoe enjoys the villainous role through the film and is easy one of the better conflicted villains in the universe.

StoryThis is an origin story for Spiderman that came out just when the superhero boom was starting up, it bought us a new hero to root for and one that was filled with the odd joke. We have the motivation for Peter to become Spiderman, a friendship which will become important through this franchise and a villain that is conflicted with why he is doing the things he is doing. It may well be a by the book origin story it does have enough darker moments to make us see the light in his actions.

Action/AdventureThe action fits the comic book genre perfectly with the adventure side of the film coming from just what Peter is learning of his new skills.

SettingsNew York City makes for the setting here, much like in the comics, it works because of the landscape that Spiderman will be taking on with his web slinging.

Special EffectsThe effects for this film show us that practical effects could still make an excellent film, the CGI feels very little.

Scene of the Movie – The parade.

That Moment That Annoyed Me You do feel like we needed more of the high school side of the film.

Final ThoughtsThis is an origin film that does hit the marks, a villain that can do enough damage but is never a true threat, learning the correct path and building a bigger picture for the whole franchise.

 

Overall: Easily one of the best origin stories.

Rating

 

 

Maze Runner: The Death Cure (2018)

Director: Wes Ball

Writer: T.S. Nowlin (Screenplay) James Dashner (Novel)

Starring: Dylan O’Brien, Ki Hong Lee, Kaya Scodelario, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Dexter Darden, Will Poulter, Jacob Lofland, Patricia Clarkson, Aidan Gillen, Barry Pepper

 

Plot: Young hero Thomas embarks on a mission to find a cure for a deadly disease known as the “Flare”.


Tagline – Who Will Make it to the WCKD End

Runtime: 2 Hours 21 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Solid Enough Finish

 

Story: Maze Runner: The Death Cure starts where the last movie finished off, Thomas (O’Brien) is leading the attempts to save the member of his team captured, Minho (Lee) and Teresa (Scodelario) from the hands of Ava Paige (Clarkson).

Thomas mission is to get into the city, joined by friends Newt (Brodie-Sangster), Frypan (Darden), Brenda (Salazar) and Jorge (Esposito) they must do what they have been trying to avoid, getting into the city which are continuing their experiments in search for a cure for the ‘Flare’, joined by an old friend to help navigate the big city.

 

Thoughts on Maze Runner: The Death Cure

 

Characters – Thomas is continuing his fight against the people that placed him in the maze, he has become the leader in the fight back and now will risk everything to save the ones his side of lost, even if it risks his own life. He will be faced with the difficult questions and decisions in the final instalment of the franchise. Minho is the member of the team that has been captured, the one that Thomas fights to rescue, Minho goes through memories as we see his point of view from inside the laboratory. Teresa is now one of the scientists working on a cure, next to Ava Paige, this shows how she has seen the bigger picture, the cure, but deep down she is still conflicted with which side to support. Newt is Thomas’ brains, he pulls the strings when it comes to inventing and planning the attacks. Ava Paige is the mind behind searching for the cure, she knows this is the only way to save the remaining humans, but even she is starting to accept defeat in her efforts. Janson is the man hunting down the Glades, he will do anything to find them and won’t give up on the idea of a cure.

PerformancesDylan O’Brien in the leading role is good especially after what happened to him during production, he shows us that he is ready to become a leading man in the action genre. The returning cast in the younger performers have all gotten to the levels we have got used with the franchise. Patricia Clarkson and Aidan Gillen provide us with the villainous figures we need too.

StoryThe story continues the battle between the Glades and the rich using the children in hope of finding a cure for the disease which has swept the land. This time the kids are fighting back in an attempt to rescue their own, while the rich are facing the reality they can’t cure the disease. Unlike many other young adult book films, we only get one final chapter, thank God, we don’t need two every time. This follows the usual lines we are used to seeing, we have returning faces and being left in the middle of the final battle to end the divide.

Action/Sci-FiThe action is by the book, we are left for a final act which is a major battle sequence, like we have seen before. The idea the world has become devastated by this virus helps bring us into the sci-fi side of the story, seeing how the human race could be divided in the quest to survive.

SettingsThe settings bring us to the big city for the battle, we have escaped the dust of survival and now take the battle to the enemy. It feels like a generic city, one we have seen before.

Special EffectsThe effects we see through the film do the job well, they could be better, but they could be a lot worse.


Scene of the Movie –
The opening sequence feels like the best watch.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Why do they keep taking their masks off?

Final ThoughtsThis is everything you would want from the final instalment of a young adult series of books, it is easy to watch without being the most memorable.

 

Overall: Solid, average finish to the series.

Rating

 

 

ABC Film Challenge – Animation – M – Meet the Robinsons (2007)

Director: Stephen J Anderson

Writer: Jon Bernstein, Michelle Bochner Spitz, Don Hall, Nathan Greno, Aurian Redson, Joseph Mateo, Stephen J Anderson (Screenplay) William Joyce (Book)

Starring: (Voice Talents) Angela Bassett, Daniel Hansen, Jordan Fry, Matthew Josten, John H H Ford, Dara McGarry

 

Plot: Lewis is a brilliant inventor who meets mysterious stranger named Wilbur Robinson, whisking Lewis away in a time machine and together they team up to track down Bowler Hat Guy in a showdown that ends with an unexpected twist of fate.


Tagline – If you think your family’s different, wait ’til you meet the family of the future.

Runtime: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Nice and Simple Animation

 

Story: Meet the Robinson starts as we meet orphan Lewis, a brilliant inventor that keeps getting over looked for adoption, tired of this, he uses his intervention skills to build a machine which could open the door to memories. When this ends up going wrong, he meets Wilbur a boy from the future, the two go into the future where Lewis will be in his element with the world being full of inventors.

Lewis while happy here must fix the time machine and return to his own time to finish his memory scanner before the future he is in now changes.

 

Thoughts on Meet the Robinson

 

Characters – Lewis is an orphan with bring dreams of being an amazing and brilliant inventor, when he gets a new friend in Wilbur that takes him to the future and his family of inventors, Lewis might have found his place in the world. Lewis is the typical Disney hero figure, worried about one part of their life while missing the truth about another part. Wilbur is the boy from the future that is trying to make up for his own mistake which could change the future he now lives in, this character shows us just what type of responsibility youngsters will need to learn about.

StoryThe story follows a young boy as he looks for answers to why he became an orphan, but over the span of his adventure he ends up in the future where he learns the importance of keeping on working towards his own destiny in typical Disney storytelling process. The story does feel like a flashy version of the Sims video game which is strange for large parts, it does have too many easy twists too.

Adventure/Comedy/Family/Sci-FiThe adventure takes our young orphan inventor to the future which plays into the sci-fi ideas which is his dreams throughout. The comedy is hit or miss with most missing in the most part though.

SettingsThe settings bring us to a future where inventors have become celebrities and their creations are everywhere with everyone using them.

AnimationThe animation works well but you do feel it could have been at a higher level for Disney.


Scene of the Movie –
Closing sequences.

That Moment That Annoyed Me It misses the jokes too many times.

Final ThoughtsThis is a basic animated movie that is everything Disney do when it comes to being safe.

 

Overall: Safe Disney movie.

Rating