Willow (1988)

Director: Ron Howard

Writer: Bob Dolman (Screenplay) George Lucas (Story)

Starring: Val Kilmer, Joanne Whalley, Warwick Davis, Jean Marsh, Patricia Hayes, Billy Barty, Pat Roach

 

Plot: A reluctant dwarf must play a critical role in protecting a special baby from an evil queen.


Tagline – A world where heroes come in all sizes and adventure is the greatest magic of all

Runtime: 2 Hours 6 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Fantasy Adventure

 

Story: Willow starts as Queen Bavmorda (Marsh) whose evil rule has been hunting for a baby that will one day kill her and end her reign. When the baby is snuck out of her kingdom she ends up floating down the river the dwarf village where Willow (Davis) reluctantly takes her in, but only ends up needing to leave his village to delivery her to a rightful owner.

Willow must team up with lone warrior Madmartigan (Kilmer) to get the baby to safety, with half the kingdom seemingly after them, the true power of the magic inside is about to be released.

 

Thoughts on Willow

 

Characters – Willow is a dwarf farmer that reluctantly agrees to help a baby get to safety, he must go on an adventure unlike anything he has been on before, he will finally get to see if his years of training will unlock his sorcerer ability. Madmartigan claims to be the greatest swordsman in the land, but has been trapped escaping enemies while reluctantly joining Willow on the mission to save the baby. Sorsha is the daughter of the Queen, leading the party to capture the baby, which soon changes when she meets Madmartigan. Queen Bavmorda is the evil ruler of the land and knows the only way to stay in control is to make sure her prophecy doesn’t come true.

PerformancesWarwick Davis is the star of the movie, he must keep his innocence while showing strength through the film. Val Kilmer gets plenty of laughs showing that he could handle both the action and comedy through this film, this showed us just what sort of career we could have seen from him. Joanne Whalley does a good job with what she has but doesn’t get too much time to show u her skills, the same goes for Jean Marsh because we don’t get enough screen time for the evil queen.

StoryThe story is an unlikely hero needing to go on a quest to save the kingdom he lives in from the reign of terror it could fall into under the Queen and her armies. The story does put our hero needing to overcome his own fears, become the strong figure he has been trying to become. It does have moment of fairy tale behaviour but doesn’t reach the levels of the previous years film, ‘The Princess Bride’. This is one that can be enjoyed by all the fantasy fans out there.

Action/Adventure/Fantasy The action is battle sequences which are fun and play out for the characters to get their moments to redeem themselves. The adventure takes Willow on the unlikely adventure for the good of the kingdom while also using his desired magic abilities in the fantasy world.

SettingsThe settings take us to a land of wizard, witches and creatures that could be a threat. It is basic, but it works for the film.


Scene of the Movie –
Snow time.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Would have liked more of the Sorsha character.

Final ThoughtsThis is a fun adventure movie, it sums up the 80’s style with how it unfolds. This is one to enjoy the ride.

 

Overall: Enjoyable throughout.

Rating

 

 

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Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017)

Director: Rian Johnson

Writer: Rian Johnson (Screenplay) George Lucas (Characters)

Starring: Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Mark Hamill, Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson, Carrie Fisher, Andy Serkis, Kelly Marie Tran

 

Plot: Having taken her first steps into the Jedi world, Rey joins Luke Skywalker on an adventure with Leia, Finn and Poe that unlocks mysteries of the Force and secrets of the past.


Runtime: 2 Hours 32 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Spectacular

 

Story: Star Wars: The Last Jedi starts as the Force Awakens ends, Rey (Ridley) has tracked down Luke Skywalker (Hamill) in an attempt to bring in to join the rebel forces in the in battle against the First Order. Princess Leia (Fisher) is evacuating the Rebel Forces after the previous attack, with the First Order waiting to pick them off.

General Hux (Gleeson) is leading the assault from the First Order, with Poe (Isaac) leading to defensive assault, while Finn (Boyega) must go on his own adventure to bring down the First Order and help the Rebels escape. Kyle Ren (Driver) is trying to battle his inner demons deciding whether to make the transition to the Dark Side or not. This brings the characters into the next chapter in the saga who will have the upper hand by the end.

 

Thoughts on Star Wars: The Last Jedi

 

Characters – Let’s look at the newer characters first, Rey locates Luke and must try to convince him to return to help the Rebels only to need to learn her place in the battle, she starts to go through Jedi training showing the powers she has deep down ready to become a powerful force in the rebel battle. Fin spends most of the film wanting to find Rey, only to go on a secret mission to help stop the First Order from tracking the Rebels. Poe is still the trigger happy pilot that wants to fight more often than just survive, he has thee biggest arc to learn about through the film. Kyle Ren is now being questioned on his dark side alliance from Snoke, he must prove his alliance by taking out the threat which stands in their way.

Original characters, Luke has been in hiding after what happened with Kylo Ren, he doesn’t want to see another student influenced by the Darkside and is reluctant to help Rey, but he must learn from his own past to guide the future. Leia is leading the Rebels escape, knowing that they have dwindling numbers, she knows they must regroup in order to survive for the next battle, she does clash with Poe’s battle heavy beliefs.

There is one more character I feel deserves a mention, that is Rose, she is an engineer for the rebels, she goes on the mission with Finn and we learn just how many people have been affected by the First Order and how they are all doing their part to help somehow.

PerformancesWe can spend time going through all the individual performances here, but it would be hard to find a fault with any of them. The whole cast picks up where they left off last time around and the addition in Kelly Marie Tran and Benicio Del Toro shows we can get stars from different scales of the experience walk into the franchise without looking out of place.

StoryThe story continues from where we left off nicely, it does branch out into the four main stories with Rey & Luke, Finn, Rose and BB8, Poe trying to save the rebels and Kylo Ren showing his true colours. This helps continue the saga on to the next chapter, gives the characters the development needed for the next stage of the battle and gives the story a real time feel about it, as the film follows the Rebels trying to escape from The First Order for the most part of the film. it does have a darker town to everything, but this is needed because this is the middle of the trilogy story and now we are ready to see how the saga concludes.

Action/Adventure/Fantasy/Sci-FiThe action here is big battle set pieces, we have space battles, land battles and one wild race through a city, they entertain throughout the film. the adventure takes some of our characters to new worlds, with new fantasy creatures which helps them grow and learn the size of the battle they are part of.

SettingsEach world has its own unique style, the island Luke lives on feels abandoned and isolated for a reason, the rich person planet shows the type of people that could be using the battles for their own good and the space sets look brilliant too.

Special EffectsThis is one of the best looking special effects filled films in this whole saga, nothing looks out of place for this movie and it shows from the first shot to the final one.


Scene of the Movie –
Lightspeed, this moment had the whole cinema gasp in amazement.

That Moment That Annoyed Me I did find the timeline slightly confusing, Rey & Luke seem to be together for days maybe even weeks, while everything else seemed to be one or two days or nights only.

Final ThoughtsThis movie has bought the saga to new levels, our characters know their place in the battle and now they are ready to get to the next level of this battle, we know the stakes are at a critical level in the battle as we wait to see where things will go next.

 

Overall: This is the best addition to Star Wars since the Original Saga.

Rating

 

 

Strange Magic (2015)

Director: Gary Rydstrom

Writer: David Berenbaum, Irene Mecchi, Gary Rydstrom (Screenplay) George Lucas (Story)

Starring: (Voice Talents) Alan Cumming, Evan Rachel Wood, Elijah Kelley, Meredith Anne Bull, Sam Palladio, Kristin Chenoweth

 

Plot: Goblins, elves, fairies and imps, and their misadventures sparked by the battle over a powerful potion.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Kids Will Enjoy

 

Story: Strange Magic starts as we see the difference between the Fairy Kingdom and the Dark Forest, the two kingdoms are side by side but both live different lives. When one of the fairies, Marianne accidently steps into the dark forest, angering the Bog King.

Marianne is about to marry the handsome fairy Roland but learns of his true nature, finding herself crushed. Swearing off love, Marianne sets out to protect her sister Dawn and friend Sunny from danger and the dark forest.

When Roland wants to become king, he must find a way to make Marianne take him back which leads him to trick Sunny into going into the dark forest to find a love potion so they can both get the one they want by finding the Sugar Plum Fairy.

This brings the Bog King into the Fairy Kingdom to retrieve the love potion giving the fairies one day to retrieve the potion or he will keep Dawn prisoner forever, with Marianne going out to rescue her.

 

Thoughts on Strange Magic

 

Characters Marianne is the typical strong female character who doesn’t want to follow the traditional trends and be extra independent, she fights for family while hating love. Bog King rules the darkness, hating the world because of his failures in love, he is a strict ruler but also sums up what it is like to have loved and lost becoming bitter to the world. Sunny the comic relief and we see him give us the most laughs as he tries to find a way to show his love for Dawn. Dawn is the annoying princess who is very shallow. Roland is the arrogant wanna be king who is completely annoying throughout.

StoryThe story is the old forbidden love story about two different sides of the fence falling in love against the wishes of everyone. We touch on the elements of trying to force someone to fall in love with you and the consequences it will have on them. It focuses a lot of the people’s individual mistakes when it comes to love.

Adventure/Comedy/Family/FantasyWe have a big adventure into the world forbidden, with elements of comedy going on throughout. We also have the fantasy elements of the film which is one the whole family could enjoy with catchy songs throughout.

SettingsThe creation of the worlds looks fantastic seeing how both sides live giving us a beautiful selection of settings.

AnimationThe animation does work well bring it into a different style to the normal, that all looks great.

Final ThoughtsThis does have a very big judgmental statement being made about treating people equally but this doesn’t over shadow the fun music side of the film.

 

Overall: This has a poor rating overall but this is enjoyable.

Rating

 

 

Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)

star warsDirector: J.J. Abrams

Writer: J.J. Abrams, Lawrence Kasdan, Michael Arndt (Screenplay) George Lucas (Characters)

Starring: Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Max Von Sydow, Peter Mayhew

 

Plot: Three decades after the defeat of the Galactic Empire, a new threat arises. The First Order attempts to rule the galaxy and only a rag-tag group of heroes can stop them, along with the help of the Resistance.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: This is the Droid we were Looking For

 

Story: Star Wars Episode 7 The Force Awakens starts by giving us the information about the time between Return of the Jedi and now, 30 years have passed and Luke Skywalker (Hamill) has vanished while Princess Leia (Fisher) is trying to locate him to stop a new threat to the galaxy The First Order.

We meet brilliant fighter pilot Poe Dameron (Isaac) who is locating a map to Luke’s location which he entrusts to droid BB-8 before he gets captured. He gets rescued by Stormtrooper Finn (Boyega) who decides to go against the training he has received only to lose him after they crash land. Meanwhile we meet scavenger Rey (Ridley) who finds the BB-8 but also grabs the attention of the First Order lead by Kylo Ren (Driver).

Rey has to team up with Finn and the familiar faces of Han Solo (Ford) and Chewbacca (Mayhew) to take down the First Order and find Luke Skywalker before the galaxy is placed back into a dark era.

Star Wars Episode 7 The Force Awakens brings us the story we were waiting for since the end of Return of the Jedi. We get to meet three leading characters that are fresh throughout but sadly I did feel the villain came off overly moany, not reaching the levels we had with Darth Vader. This has a great feel about it with the returning characters not taking over the story. My only disappointment with this is the slight loose ends about how everything came about being where it is when you thought everything was going to be peaceful after the end of Return of the Jedi.

 

 

Actor Review

 

Daisy Ridley: Rey is a scavenger that lives on the remote planet that BB-8 is from, she is waiting for her family to return and can handle herself in a fight. She is also able to fix anything with minimal tools at her disposal.  She has a connection to the force which gives her the reason to finally leave and stay away from her home planet where she even catches the eye of Han Solo as a potential successor to his Millennium Falcon. Daisy gives us a brilliant performance that could be the best leading character from an original Star Wars story.rey

John Boyega: Finn is the former Stormtrooper who was plunked from his family before being turned into a mindless Stormtrooper. He seems to relapse from his training where he wants to do the right thing which includes helping Rey and Poe against the First Order. John is great in this role as a character we wouldn’t have ever thought about seeing before.finn

Adam Driver: Kylo Ren is the leader of the First Order, he has the power of the force but not the presences of Vadar. He throws tantrums whenever things don’t go his way as he is still battling his good side with his dark side. Adam does a good job in this role even if I wasn’t the biggest fan of the character’s action.kylo

Oscar Isaac: Poe Dameron is the brilliant pilot tasked with finding Luke Skywalker, he is loyal to Leia and the leader in the battle. Oscar gives a good supporting performance as a character we would like to learn more about.poe

Harrison Ford: Han Solo returns to reclaim his ship but once on board he gets to finish his own personal battle that he has found himself running from for years. Harrison gives us a good performance returning to the levels we would expect.han

Support Cast: Star Wars Episode 7 The Force Awakens has a good supporting cast that include returning faces and fresh that all feel like they are part of the Star Wars world.

Director Review: J.J. AbramsJ.J. brings us the sequel needed to bring us back to the Star Wars world we love.

 

Action: Star Wars Episode 7 The Force Awakens gives us good action from start to finish be it chases, combat or light saber battles.

Adventure: Star Wars Episode 7 The Force Awakens gives us a great space adventure from start to finish.

Sci-Fi: Star Wars Episode 7 The Force Awakens brings us back to the galaxy far, far away a place that people call home.

Settings: Star Wars Episode 7 The Force Awakens each settings makes us feel like we are just back to where we were when Return of the Jedi finishes.
Special Effects
: Star Wars Episode 7 The Force Awakens has brilliant special effects from start to finish that never look out of place in the universe.

Suggestion: Star Wars Episode 7 The Force Awakens is one for the fans of the original saga to all enjoy. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Having the guts to do what Avengers doesn’t.

Worst Part: Villain sometimes comes off moany.

Action Scene Of The Film: Attacking the First Order.

Funniest Scene: BB-8 and Finn arguing while Rey fixes the Falcon.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Has plenty lined up for the future.

Post Credits Scene: No

Similar Too: Star Wars A New Hope

 

Oscar Chances: Could get a few technical awards.

Budget: $200 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 7 Minutes

Tagline: Coming to your galaxy this winter.

Trivia: This film takes place 30 years after the Return of the Jedi. The film itself is released 32 years and 7 months after the previous film.

 

Overall: The sequel we all wanted that will make all the fans happy

Ratingcard

Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi (1983)

logo

Director: Richard Marquand

Writer: Lawrence Kasdan, George Lucas (Screenplay) George Lucas (Story)

Starring: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels, David Prowse, Peter Mayhew, Kenny Baker, Frank Oz, Alec Guinness

Plot: After rescuing Han Solo from the palace of Jabba the Hutt, the rebels attempt to destroy the second Death Star, while Luke struggles to make Vader return from the dark side of the Force.

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

Verdict: Fitting Conclusion to Epic Saga

Story: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi starts by informing us that Luke (Hamill) is trying to rescue Han Solo (Ford) from Jabba the Hutt while Darth Vadar is overseeing the construction of the new Death Star with the evil Emperor coming to end the rebel forces. Luke sends C3PO and R2-D2 to negotiate the release of Solo by offering the two droids as a bargaining chip.

When Princess Leia (Fisher) arranges to rescues Han Solo it is up to Luke to break everyone free but Jabba has plans for all of our heroes as he plans to kill them for trying to escape him. Let’s face it they were never going to kill any of our heroes here so it is time for an epic escape from Jabba.

Once free Luke finishes his training learning the complete truth about the dark side of the force before rejoining on the final mission to destroy the empire once and for all. Things aren’t going to be that easy for our heroes because Vadar sees this as a chance to finish off his son and bring him to the dark side.

Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi is how you should end all trilogies, we have the good guys having to defeat the victorious villains from the previous instalment. Many people dislike or find this the worst of the trilogy but I am willingly to say this is my favourite. I like the class between the Vadar and Luke because it could have gone in many different directions but the end works perfectly showing that you can always fight your dark side. We do get the typical idea that the underdogs win in a battle they shouldn’t but we needed the good guys to win this time around. This really is how trilogies should all end. (9/10)

Actor Review

Mark Hamill: Luke Skywalker rescues Han Solo fro his prison before completing his training to become the Jedi knight. Once the training is complete he goes on the mission to defeat his father and the empire. Mark gives his best performance of he saga here. (9/10)luke

Harrison Ford: Han Solo starts trapped in his prison before being rescued and taking the role as the lead in the mission to take down the enemy shields that will make the final onslaught possible. Harrison suffers from lack of screen time and doesn’t live up to the hype we once saw from his character. (7/10)solo

Carrie Fisher: Princess Leia Organa is the first person to try and rescue Han but only ends up becoming a prisoner herself before getting free and going on the mission to lower the shields. Carrie does a good job but you can’t help but wonder how she always gets captured. (7/10)leia

David Prowse/ James Earl Jones: Darth Vader wants to bring his son into the force but on his dark side, but if he doesn’t he is happy to kill him to stop the rebels taking over the empire. The final side of the Vadar chapter works very well showing how he became the dark side but how he could change. (8/10)vadar

Anthony Daniels/Kenny Baker: C-3PO & R2 D2 both come in useful as the mission continues, C3PO gets treated like a god by the ewoks while R2-D2 is as feisty as every. The pair give good performance as the lovable droids. (7/10)droids

Peter Mayhew: Chewbacca continues to be loyal to Han Solo willing to go on any mission with his long time friend. Peter continued to make Chewbacca a lovable character. (7/10)

Support Cast: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi has a large supporting cast than previously as we see the character our heroes have met before they turned up in the saga.

Director Review: Richard MarquandRichard gives us a fitting conclusion to the franchise that redefined the sci-fi genre. (9/10)

Action: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi has plenty of action involved from the rescue scene, to the final battle. (9/10)

Adventure: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi takes our heroes on the final chapter of their epic adventure. (9/10)

Fantasy: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi puts us into the world where our characters meet a string of different characters along their adventure. (9/10)

Sci-Fi: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi takes all the action into an intergalactic war. (9/10)

Settings: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi creates another group of original settings for our characters to enter as well as revisiting previous ones. (9/10)
Special Effects: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi has great special effects throughout until the very disappoint change in the recent version to change Anakin. (7/10)

Suggestion: Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi is a must watch especially if you have seen the original parts of the franchise. (Must Watch)

Best Part: Vadar v Luke

Worst Part: Including new Anakin.

Action Scene Of The Film: final battle.

Funniest Scene: Ewoks.

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Final part of original saga before the prequel saga and upcoming sequels.

Post Credits Scene: No

Oscar Chances: Nominated for 4 Oscars.

Box Office: $309 Million

Budget: $32.5 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 14 Minutes

Tagline: Return To A Galaxy… Far, Far Away

Overall: Brilliant finish to the greatest saga every put to film.

Rating 

95