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

 

 

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Christopher Robin (2018)

Director: Marc Forster

Writer: Alex Ross Perry, Tom McCarthy, Allison Schroeder (Screenplay) Greg Brooker, Mark Steven Johnson, A.A. Milne, Ernest Shepard (Story/Characters)

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Hayley Atwell, Bronte Carmichael, Mark Gatiss, Oliver Ford Davies, Ronke Adekoluejo

 

Plot: A working-class family man, Christopher Robin, encounters his childhood friend Winnie-the-Pooh, who helps him to rediscover the joys of life.


Tagline – Out of the Wood. Into the City.

Runtime: 1 Hour 44 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Absolute Delight

 

Story: Christopher Robin starts when Christopher Robin leaves the 100 Acre Wood as he grows up, saying goodbye to Winnie the Pooh and friends, promising never to forget about them, the years flyby and soon Christopher (McGregor) is married to Evelyn (Atwell) with a daughter Madeline (Carmichael), he goes to and returns from war, becoming a businessman needing to make difficult decisions.

When Christopher is facing the most difficult time in his life, with his professional career facing dismissing staff and his personal life showing how distant he is becoming from his family, Winnie ends up paying him a visit in London, as he searches for his own friends from 100 Acre Wood.

 

Thoughts on Christopher Robin

 

Characters – Christopher Robin is now grown up, not the child we know from the Winnie the Pooh adventures, he is married with his own child and his own responsibilities, he is struggling to balance the two lives showing how his imagination is losing out to the real world. being visited by Winnie, he must look at his life and decide just what is right for him, his family or his career. Evelyn is his wife that has supported him through all his decisions, she is growing tired of Christopher’s actions, deciding what is best for their daughter, Madeline is the daughter that is being pushed down a path that Christopher never did, one with discipline and no imagination. Winnie the Pooh is the lovable bear that loves his honey, he visits Christopher to try and save him from his own misguidance.

PerformancesEwan McGregor is fantastic in this leading role, he shows us just how difficult life can be with the balance as we see how he will show the struggle to be a family man or a businessman. Hayley Atwell is good without having to do that much in her role. Bronte Carmichael gives us a good child actor performance.

StoryThe story shows what happens to Christopher Robin once he grows up and starts to make the same mistakes his own father would make for him. This is a story about needing to learn how to balance a career and personal life to make sure that you enjoy the most part of your own life, bring back the popular figures from the Winnie the Pooh world, it all comes together to make you leave the film with a true smile on your face. This story will connect to people of all ages and play into the love for the Winnie the Pooh characters.

Adventure/Comedy/FantasyThe adventure takes Christopher Robin, Winnie the Pooh and the rest of the gang on the biggest adventure, one that is important to life, not just enjoyment. The comedy connects well through the film, you will be laughing a lot in this film even with it having serious moments in. the fantasy side of the film shows how these colourful characters are real in this world.

SettingsThe film is set in two main locations, first is London showing how far away from the boy from the 100 Acre Wood has go, the second is the 100 Acre Wood to which will bring the boy out of Christopher.

AnimationThe animation focuses on just bring the animals into the real world and it does hit very well never looking out of place.


Scene of the Movie –
The adventure to work.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Nothing.

Final ThoughtsThis is a delightful film to watch, it is one of the film that will leave you smiling with pleasure and true enjoyment.

 

Overall: Wonderful.

Rating

 

 

Stan & Ollie (2018)

Director: Jon S Baird

Writer: Jeff Pope (Screenplay)

Starring: John C Reilly, Steve Coogan, Shirley Henderson, Danny Huston, Stephanie Hyam, Nina Arianda

 

Plot: Laurel and Hardy, the world’s most famous comedy duo, attempt to reignite their film careers as they embark on what becomes their swan song – a grueling theatre tour of post-war Britain.


Tagline – The untold story of the world’s greatest comedy act.

Runtime: 1 Hour 37 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Comical Delight

 

Story: Stan & Ollie starts as we learn how Laurel (Coogan) and Hardy (Reilly) were the biggest comedy act in the world, they conquered countries across the world with their routines, only their contracts weren’t on a par with fellow greats of the time Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin. In a rash decision Laurel tries to get a bigger deal leading to him needing to find a new studio, the pair break up.

15 years later, the careers for both men haven’t gone well, but reunited for a reunion tour of Britain and the hopes of a movie together, the friendship the men had is shown in a new light with regrets coming to light about decisions they both made through their career.

 

 

Thoughts on Stan & Ollie

 

Characters – Stan Laurel is one half of the comedy duo, he writes the material, plans more and demands more back for his work, he tires to help the duo get better pay, which only sees the partnership end, he is the one trying to work on the movie script and you can see how much being original meant to him. Oliver Hardy is the big man of the duo, he had gambling problems and like Stan they both had women problems rising to the top. He was left in a difficult position by Stan tied to a contract, but will use the tour to make up for lost time between the two friends. Lucille is the wife of Oliver who has been caring for him since the break up of the act, she is always concerned about his health, while getting tired of hearing Ida’s stories. Ida is the Russian wife of Stan who sees herself as a movie star, she seems to enjoy the spotlight more than Lucille and will play along with any act she can.

PerformancesJohn C Reilly and Steve Coogan are perfect in these roles, they show the chemistry the two can have which you feel the real partnership had. They hit the funny lines and the emotional lines showing us just how the two are two of the best comedy acts in acting today. Shirley Henderson and Nina Arianda both give us wonderful supporting performances showing the concern and confidence their characters required.

StoryThe story here follows the reunion of Laurel & Hardy as they embark on a tour of Britain in hopes of securing a movie deal. This is a different type of story than you would expect from a biopic because, we start with the pair on top of the world and see nothing of their rise to the top. We see what caused the break up and how over the years it has been held in by the two men who were both helpless in the situation. The one thing the pair never lost though, was their chemistry and they wowed audience across Britain in what turned out to be their farewell tour. We do see many biopic which show all the highlights of the subject’s career, this showed what happened afterwards which felt like a breath of fresh air in the biopic heavy world we have at the moment.

Biopic/ComedyThe shows us how Laurel & Hardy remained big household names even after their stars had faded, they became the duo people looked up to and always were willing to give a joke out. This does only show their farewell tour though which showed they could perform on front of any sized audience.

SettingsThe film takes the duo across the UK, each setting feels authentic to their performances in the post-war Britain and as the performance went on the venues got bigger.


Scene of the Movie –
The routines.

That Moment That Annoyed Me If you did want to see their great work, you will not be seeing any of that here.

Final ThoughtsThis is a delightful film and one that could easily be enjoyed by all, it has two perfect performances from the leads and will leave you in tears and smiles.

 

Overall: One of the best biopics you will see.

Rating

 

 

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween (2018)

Director: Ari Sandel

Writer: Rob Lieber (Screenplay) Rob Lieber, Darren Lemke (Story)

Starring: Wendi McLendon-Covey, Madison Iseman, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Caleel Harris, Ken Jeong, Chris Parnell

 

Plot: Two young friends find a magic book that brings a ventriloquist’s dummy to life.


Tagline – Halloween comes to life.

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Not as Fun as it Should Be

 

Story: Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween when college bound Sarah (Iseman) is left to look after her little brother Sonny (Taylor) and his friend Sam (Harris) who have their own business known as the ‘Junk Bros’, the two discover Slappy while on the job and must deal with the psychotic dummy.

The three soon find themselves needing to fight off Slappy and his creations, leading to them needing to uncover the book by R.L. Stine which can stop his reign of terror, bringing to life the creations from the books.

 

Thoughts on Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween

 

Characters – Sarah is the older sister, she is about to head off to college if she can figure out how to write her application letter. She must reluctantly babysit her younger brother and his friend, while dealing with her own personal problems, even if this could bring her the answer she requires. Sonny is the younger brother that gets himself into trouble a lot, when it comes to his creation, along with his best friend Sam. Sam is the wise talking of the two he offers the business, he must help solve the problem of Slappy. Kathy is the single mother forced to work longer hours to make sure her kids have the future, she remains calm through the chaos going on through the film.

PerformancesThe performances are simple enough, the younger stars, Madison Iseman, Jeremy Ray Taylor and Caleel Harris are good for what they have to do, only to not be on the same level of the previous film. Wendi McLendon-Covey gets the basic parent role done without bring too much new to the character.

StoryThe story here sees the creations of R.L. Stine coming to life causing chaos in a city once again. This is where the story falls flat quickly because the story feels like just a remake of the first, the Goosebumps books are an amazing source of stories and maybe instead of just throwing every monster made into one story, we should think about making one of the stories into a movie, or even as an anthology. We try to have some family bonding put into the story and even elements of coming of age, with Sarah needing to decide her future. In the end this story just isn’t that interesting and by the end you won’t have missed much.

Adventure/Comedy/FamilyThe adventure takes the teenagers into a battle that only they can solve, which is basic to say the least, but they must save the town. The comedy is hit or miss without being much laugh out loud material. This plays into the family side of the film because more of the younger audience will be enjoying this one.

SettingsThe film is set in a town which is considered small where the people need to get out of if they are going to make something with their life.

Special EffectsThe effects in this film are good for the most part, the creations all look like they could be in the world.


Scene of the Movie – 
Gummy bear fight.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The story not being original.

Final ThoughtsThis is a basic sequel that just copies the original too much, it offers nothing new and is just passable watch for the younger audience.

 

Overall: Simple and not original.

Rating

 

 

Snake Outta Compton (2018)

Director: Hank Braxtan

Writer: Hank Braxtan, Tim Johnson, James Kondelik, Jon Kondelik, Ashley Scott Meyers (Screenplay)

Starring: Ricky Flowers Jr, Motown Maurice, Donte Essien, Aurelia Michael, Joston Theney, Jon Kondelik, Tarkan Dospil

 

Plot: A rap group on the verge of signing their first record deal is the city’s only hope in a battle with a giant mutating snake monster.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 29 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Hideous Parody Creature Feature

 

Story: Snake Outta Compton starts as friends Cam (Flowers Jr), Pinball (Maurice) and Beez Neez (Dospil) are preparing for their chance to get out of Compton with a record deal, where Vurkel (Essien) finds a snake egg which he hatches and supersizes it. Corrupt cop Denz (THeney) and rookie Ethan (Kondelik) are on the training day, as the three stories cross together once the snake grows to massive size cause chaos in the Compton area.

The different sides must come together to defeat the snake, but can the guys make it to their record moment before the deadline, that is the big question?

 

Thoughts on Snake Outta Compton

 

Characters – Cam is the leader of the crew, he is the one the friends always turn to when they get into trouble, he leads the crew in the fight back against the snake. Pinball is one of the two idiot members of the crew, he thinks he is the most important part of the crew, though he can’t even do a robbery correctly. Neon is the strong woman in the group, she puts the guys in their place telling them that if they don’t make it this time, they must give up on their dream. Denz and Ethan are clearly a piss take of the Training Day double act. We get character that are piss takes of many different character from with in the film that would be Compton based.

PerformancesThe performances in the film are not the best, we have the actors that must become parodies of more famous actors in popular films. Parody films are always difficult to perform at the top level, though these actors struggle to make themselves feel unique.

StoryThe story here brings us parodies of popular Compton based movies while a giant snake is causing chaos within the area. It brings the people together to fight a big creature which is the highlight of the film, while the parodies seem to just get in the way of a comedy that could have bought us an interesting story. This is a story that could work, only it turns into a mess that isn’t sure whether it wants to be a parody movie or a creature feature.

Comedy/Horror/Sci-FiThe comedy in this film is not very good, it is mostly parody style with the likes of ‘Straight Outta Compton’ ‘Training Day’ and many others from this genre, they feel insulting more than parodies. The horror is a creature feature and is one that could be interesting. Sci-fi comes into the mix when we see just what has been created and how the snake has become supersized.

SettingsThe film is set in Compton which does help with the creation of the parody style attempted in the film, they are simple without doing anything to make this film stand out.

Special EffectsThe effects are weak, but strangely enough you can look past this in places because it is meant to be a bonkers creature feature.


Scene of the Movie –
Cleaning up the interrogation room.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Snake sex, yes this actually happens.

Final ThoughtsThis is a creature feature that wants to be a parody about films in the Compton area, the problem is the two don’t mix in anyway.

 

Overall: Well this sucked.

Rating