Weird Science (1985)

Director: John Hughes

Writer: John Hughes (Screenplay)

Starring: Anthony Michael Hall, Kelly LeBrock, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Bill Paxton Suzanne Snyder, Judie Aronson, Robert Downey Jr

 

Plot: Two high school nerds attempt to create the perfect woman, but she turns out to be more than that.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: 80’s Teen Comedy Fun

 

Story: Weird Science starts as we meet our two social outcasts high school students Gary Wallace (Hall) and Wyatt Donnelly (Mitchell-Smith) who tired of being shunned by the girls at school, decide to build their perfect woman on a computer. This creates their perfect woman, Lisa (LeBrock) who they gave intelligence to go with her sexiness.

Lisa shows the boys a good time as well as teaching them to stand up for themselves be it Wyatt over his military school brother Chet (Paxton) or Gary when it comes to talking to woman. The two boys learn so much from Lisa so they will be ready for the real world.

 

Thoughts on Weird Science

 

Characters/PerformanceGary is the slightly more confident of the two boys, he stays positive through all the bad things that have happened to the two, but he can get them in trouble too. Wyatt is the constantly worrying of the two, he is the computer whiz that does the technical side of creating Lisa. Lisa is the created woman that finds a way to bring out the best in the boys as she is a free spirit that will let the boys see the new vision on life.

Performance wise, Hall was one of the go to teen stars of the time and this shows why he was great in these geek like roles, Mitchel-Smith was also good through the film too showing he could handle the teen comedy genre. Kelly LeBrock fits the role perfectly looking the part needed for the sexy woman the boys couldn’t understand.

StoryThe story does follow two nerds that don’t fit in getting shown the way to fit in by just being themselves rather than trying to impress others. This story fits into the 80 style of storytelling with an over the top idea into a fantasy film.

Comedy/Romance/Sci-FiThe comedy clicks for the time even if some moments do come off dated in places with the romance being teen romance which is all fine and the sci-fi comes from being able to create your own woman.

SettingsThe settings show us the different environment Gary and Wyatt must go into to fit in as well as keeping the home comfortable for them.

Final ThoughtsWhen it comes to 80s film this will must go down as one of the best, parts have dated now but this still does what teen comedies should do throughout.

 

Overall: Classic 80s teen comedy.

Rating

 

 

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Battalion (2018)

Director: Michael Miller

Writer: Michael Miller (Screenplay)

Starring: Jesse Richardson, Ellen Williams, Michael Thomson, James Storer, Leigh Walker, Darrell Plumridge

 

Plot: After a war against an enemy from another world breaks out in the South Pacific, a group of freshly recruited U.S. Marines are sent to the front lines.


Tagline – Our world is at war.

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Simple Sci-Fi

 

Story: Battalion starts as we learn the world has been a war for 7 months as we follow John Blake (Richardson), Tracey Gleeson (Williams) and Chris Jackson (Thomson) whose normal lives were shattered with the outbreak of the war, but now they fight back together.

After suffering casualties in the first retaliation mission against the machines from another world, Blake must continue the battle with Tracey by his side, but will Jackson step back up next to his brother to try and save humanity.

 

Thoughts on Battalion

 

Characters – John Blake grew up with Jackson in LA, close enough to being brothers who joins up to the military after the attack that kills their family. Trained under Jackson it isn’t long before he is the one stepping in the battle. Tracey Gleeson is a college professor that decides to join up after the attack, follow Black into battle she must show the fight that she had been struggling to find in life.

PerformancesThe three leads in the movie are good for what they are meant to be, we have the reluctant hero, the soldier whose lost faith and the one looking for direction and they work this well through the film.

StoryThe story follows a group of soldiers, a battalion if you like that come from different backgrounds to fight alien invaders that are wiping out the population of the world. We do jump around the timeline here seeing before and after the opening sequence, which at times can be hard to keep up with, but once you think you can piece it together. It plays out like you would imagine for the most part, but it is the story side of things you have come to know anyway.

Sci-FiAliens invading Earth, you don’t get that much more sci-fi than this.

SettingsThe settings show us how the big city get wiped out and how the battles can take place in a quieter location of the islands in the oceans.

Special EffectsThe effects are not the strength of this film, everything looks like a video game, but for me that seem to add to the fun of the film.


Scene of the Movie –
Final moment.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Keeping up on the timeline.

Final ThoughtsThis is a solid low budget sci-fi that shows another vision of how an alien attack could become deadly for the human race.

 

Overall: Enjoyable without being ground-breaking.

Rating

 

 

2047: Virtual Revolution (2017)

Director: Guy-Roger Duvert

Writer: Guy-Roger Duvert (Screenplay)

Starring: Mike Dopud, Jane Badler, Jochen Hagele, Maximilien Poullein, Kaya Blocksage

 

Plot: Paris 2047. Most of the population spend all their time online, connected into virtual worlds, and don’t care anymore about reality. A shadow agent, Nash, working for one of the multinational companies behind these virtual worlds, is tracking down terrorists who threaten the system…


Tagline – The revolution did happen… Just not the way they thought it would.

Runtime: 1 Hour 32 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Strong Addition to the Sci-Fi World

 

Story: 2047: Virtual Revolution starts as we enter the world where people lock themselves inside to enter virtual reality worlds in the near future, 2047. When someone starts performing terrorist actions inside the game, Nash (Dopud) a shadow agent is hired by the company reporting to Dina (Badler) on his findings to do about the crimes.

To learn who is behind this terrorist attack inside the game Nash takes over an avatar of one of the terrorists and infiltrates the cell online, but not everything is completely what it seems.

 

Thoughts on 2047: Virtual Revolution

 

Characters – Nash is an off the grid shadow agent, he gets hired to find a terrorist that is killing people inside a virtual reality world, he uses his contacts to get the job done as he is one of the few people that doesn’t spend his whole time logged into the virtual reality world. Dina is the owner of a cooperation that is seeing her customers murdered, she hires Nash to find the people behind it. Stilson is part of the Interpol unit that is searching for answers too, looking at both the companies and the terrorists.

PerformancesMike Dopud in the leading role is good, he has the grittiness for his character of the detective that finds himself in the middle of a bigger battle. The rest of the cast are good and fit their characters well through the film.

StoryThe story takes into a world where people hide from reality in a virtual world everyday all the time. When a movement wants to end this a Shadow Agent must work his way through all the different parties to figure out who is doing the right thing for the world, for what he wants from the world and work out who the terrorists really are. This story does keep you guessing by having plenty of different twists in the story, different sides to the story and puts us into a future which could be a reality for some. We need to have a story that keeps us guessing here otherwise we will find ourselves feeling empty and the way this all unfolds does feel like something we have seen before, but does have enough twists to make it original too.

Action/Crime/Sci-FiThe action is steady, we have a mix of fights in both the real world and the virtual world with the second offer bigger chances to fight. There is a crime conspiracy going on and we must figure out who is the one that is guilty, the future world helps with the sci-fi concepts with the bleak world we enter and the virtual world we enter.

SettingsThe settings show both the bleak future world, mostly in backdrops though and the virtual world only seems to be a swords and armour battle location.

Special EffectsThe effects are limited for a world that could be all about the effects, this doesn’t mean they are bad just not needed to tell this world.


Scene of the Movie –
Learning the truth.

That Moment That Annoyed Me While this gets away without using effects, it could have had a couple to help show the bleakness of the modern world.

Final ThoughtsThis is a smart idea for a sci-fi film, it keeps you guessing from start to finish, it takes us into a modern world that works well with strong performances.

 

Overall: Good sci-fi movie that deserves attention.

Rating

 

 

Vintage Franchise – Star Trek IX: Insurrection (1998)

Director: Jonathan Frakes

Writer: Rick Berman, Michael Piller (Screenplay) Gene Roddenberry (Characters)

Starring: Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes, Brent Spiner, LeVar Burton, Michael Dorn, F Murray Abraham, Donna Murphy

 

Plot: When the crew of the Enterprise learn of a Federation conspiracy against the inhabitants of a unique planet, Captain Picard begins an open rebellion.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Best of the New Generation Films

 

Story: Star Trek: Insurrection starts as Data (Spiner) goes rogue against the Federation who are monitoring a seemingly primitive group of humans on an unknown planet, Picard (Stewart) must take the Enterprise to this planet to solve Data’s problem only to learn the planet knows and has travelled the universe.

When Picard investigates Data’s malfunction more he learns that Admiral Dougherty (Zerbe) and Ru’Afo (Abraham) have plans for the planet and the people living on it, leaving Picard to rebel against the Federation.

 

Thoughts on Star Trek: Insurrection

 

Characters – Picard continues to be strong leader who challenges his authority while defending his crew and the rights of the people on the planet from Federation law. Data uses his programming to make himself a threat to the Federation showing his loyalty to Picard. Ru’afo is the leader that wants control of the planet because of what the planet possesses and he will do what he wants to make it possible to work with the Federation.

PerformanceThe performances across the board are the best from the main cast of the crew in the franchise to date with the addition performances all coming off good through the film.

StoryThis is the first of the new generation Star Trek films that follows the characters on an adventure which feels original and not part of the television series, this helps us enjoy this movie because it shows our trusted crew doing the right thing, defend the peace in the galaxy from a new threat. The story also feels like what the point of Star Trek would be, to go in peace to new worlds to defend the people on the planet.

Adventure/Mystery/Sci-FiThe adventure part of this story brings our crew to a new world, one that is off the grid in a battle against the people they are meant to be working with, which brings us to the mystery which circles around just what is going on with the two sides interested in the planet.

SettingsThe settings show us just what the Federation will fight for, they have the technology in their ships but the peaceful planet is what the people want.

Special EffectsThe practical effects used through the film are good but the CGI ones end up looking cheaper than they were.

Scene of the Movie – Magic trick.

That Moment That Annoyed Me We lack the use of the supporting crew enough in this film.

Final ThoughtsThis is easily the best of the next generations film, it has an original story that feels like a movie over an extended television moment which the previous films have felt like so far.

 

Overall: Entertaining addition to the franchise.

Rating

 

 

Vintage Franchise – Star Trek VIII: First Contact (1996)

Director: Jonathan Frakes

Writer: Rick Berman, Brannon Braga, Ronald D Moore (Screenplay) Gene Roddenberry (Characters)

Starring: Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes, Brent Spiner, LeVar Burton, Michael Dorn, Gates McFadden, James Cromwell, Alice Krige

 

Plot: The Borg travel back in time intent on preventing Earth’s first contact with an alien species. Captain Picard and his crew pursue them to ensure that Zefram Cochrane makes his maiden flight reaching warp speed.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Struggles to Make Impact

 

Story: Star Trek: First Contact starts as Picard (Stewart) is having nightmares of being capture by the Borg (This must have happened in the television show, so I have no idea), this stops him going into battle against the Borg but like all Enterprise captains he goes against these orders finding the ship going back in time following a Borg vessel that has changed the past.

The Enterprise crew goes back in time to the time before First Contact by Zefram Cochran (Cromwell) is made before the Borg Queen (Krige) destroy the moment and take over the Earth.

 

Thoughts on Star Trek: First Contact

 

Characters – Picard is haunted by his past having been captured by the Borg on the television show, he must lead his crew in a mission which needs to stop the change of human history. Borg Queen is the leader of the Borg, they all work for her with her power and now she wants to take out human history before they can get into the space race. Zefram Cochran is the man who made intergalactic travel possible and makes first contact with the Vulcans, he turns out to be a drunk and the crew must work to get him ready for this mission.

PerformancePatrick Stewart did become a good captain and easily people’s favourite and it shows why here, Alice Krige brings us a villain which works well while Cromwell seems to enjoy being the drunken history maker.

StoryThe story here gives us a chance to see how the first contact happened which is nice to see, but the problems in the story comes from bringing in an established villain that has a past with Picard which was a problem for last film too. We have the same peril you would come to know but mostly just entertaining for the fans of the television show.

Adventure/Mystery/Sci-FiThe adventure takes out crew back in time, which is what has worked before in the franchise, the sci-fi comes from the idea of time travel because saving humanity is what the Enterprise does.

SettingsThe settings are disappointing mostly, we have the ship and random location in the woods on Earth, we don’t get somewhere to fight for and the Enterprise gets destroyed yet again.

Special EffectsThe effects do continue to improve through the film with the Borg looks terrifying at times.

Scene of the Movie – The Borg Queen introduction.

That Moment That Annoyed Me We don’t know the back story for Picard and the Borgs enough.

Final ThoughtsIf you were a fan of the television show you will find yourself enjoying this one because you need to know some of the back story but as a singular sci-fi film it is fine.

 

Overall: Simple Franchise filler.

Rating