Disaster Weekend – Aftershock (2010)

aftershockDirector: Xiaogang Feng

Writer: Wu Si (Screenplay) Ling Zhang (Novel)

Starring: Fan Xu, Jingchu Zhang, Chen Li, Ti Lu, Zi-feng Zhang, Jiajun Zhang, Zhong Lu

 

Plot: The epic story of a family separated as a result of the Great Tangshan Earthquake of 1976.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Emotional Charged Epic

 

Story: Aftershock starts as we meet the family of husband Daqiang (Guoqiang Zhang) wife Yuanni (Xu) and children Deng (Zi-feng Zhang) and Da (Jiajun Zhang) who live a normal happy life in the city of Tangshan, but one night their lives are shattered when a devastating earthquake destroys the city.

With Daqiang killed in the quake Yuanni begs everyone to help rescue her children from the concrete grave they find themselves under as she finds herself with the impossible decision of which one of her children she can save because saving one will kill the other. Saving her son Yuanni believes her daughter is dead leaving her with the dead bodies but somehow Deng survives and is rescued by a solider to start her new life. We also follow how Yuanni and Da (Li) start the next chapter of their life with Yuanni filled with the guilt about the decision she had to make.

Decades pass without either knowing the truth of the other’ lives as Deng (Jingchu Zhang) and Da have the impossible chance encounter at another earthquake and learn of the heartbreak the earthquake caused both sides of the family.

Aftershock is bar far and above the greatest disaster related film I have ever seen. The disaster is only the background to this story and the effects are incredible. The story is the most important part of this film and see the 32-year tragic story of the family divided by the disaster, this side of the story shows the decisions the family make because of what happened and each decision pulls of the heart strings. This film will bring a tear to the eye because of how powerful this film is and is an absolute must watch for all. Each performance is brilliant and you can feel the emotion the characters are feeling.

 

Overall: Heart-breaking, stunning, epic, emotional, powerful film that is simply the best in the genre.

Rating95

 

 

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Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (2015)

logoDirector: Christopher McQuarrie

Writer: Christopher McQuarrie (Screenplay) Christopher McQuarrie, Drew Pearce (Story)

Starring: Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg, Rebecca Ferguson, Ving Rhames, Sean Harris, Simon McBurney, Jingchu Zhang, Tom Hollander, Alec Baldwin

Plot: Ethan and team take on their most impossible mission yet, eradicating the Syndicate – an International rogue organization as highly skilled as they are, committed to destroying the IMF.

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

Verdict: Non Stop Action

Story: Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation starts in London, Ethan Hunt (Cruise) who gets his latest mission, a shadow nation known as the Syndicate who have turned the tables on Hunt. CIA Director Alan Hunley (Baldwin) is out to close the IMF with William Brandt (Renner) there to defend them the ruling is that the IMF is closed.

The Syndicate captures Ethan preparing to torture him before Ilsa Faust (Ferguson) saves him but remains undercover inside the Syndicate. Hunley is trying to hunt down Hunt even if it ends up going through his former team with Benji Dunn (Pegg) first up. Hunt continues to use his old team mate Benji as he tries to bring down the Syndicate, the question remains just how deep does the Syndicate’s cover up go and can Ethan and his team stop them before they complete their plan to create a new world they can control.

Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation is the toughest test Ethan has faced to date while I still wonder how anyone would even consider the fact Ethan has gone dark after just the four mission we have seen, we have to deal with it again here. I like how through the how film you are not sure what side of the fence Ilsa is but when it comes to Ethan’s story it does feel like more of the same. It is unfair to say this is bad because if it ain’t broke don’t fix it and this could easily be the most action packed of the series especially as it doesn’t seem to let you have time to breathe. This is a wonderful addition to the spy genre. (8/10)

Actor Review

Tom Cruise: Ethan Hunt is our leading special agent who has been working on tracking down the Syndicate, when his unit gets closed down yet again he must go rogue himself with both the Syndicate and CIA after him. Ethan has to turn to his trusted team to supporting him along with undercover British Agent Ilsa to stop the Syndicate once and for all. Tom Cruise continues to show why he is the biggest blockbuster star around this a great performance. (9/10)hunt

Jeremy Renner: William Brandt has to deal with the wrath of the CIA Director who is out to stop Ethan and the IMF. He must let Ethan complete the mission but can’t directly help him in anyway, before teaming up with Luther to save Ethan. Jeremy continues with this almost awkward role, not his fault his character just feels out of place in the action side of things. (7/10)

Simon Pegg: Benji Dunn is the technologically skilled team member of Hunt’s who ends up getting pulled into the field which he wants to take down the Syndicate while being chased down by the CIA. Benji brings all the laughs to the making everything have a lighter feel which is much needed with all the action. Simon gives a great performance with an added laugh in almost every scene he is in. (9/10)benji

Rebecca Ferguson: Ilsa Faust is the member of the Syndicate that helps Ethan but through the whole film we never really know who she is working for even with her connection with the British Secret Service. Rebecca does a good job in the role that offers up the most interest mainly because we don’t know where her alliance is and Rebecca helps give mystery to his character. (7/10)ilsa

Sean Harris: Solomon Lane is the leader of the Syndicate, former British Intelligence who is waging his own war where he can end up control the fire arms being used in wars. Sean makes for a good villain but I think we still need that little extra from his characters side. (7/10)

Support Cast: Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation has a big supporting cast that are the henchmen, the supporters of Ethan and just the pawns in the game as the truth needs to be bought out.

Director Review: Christopher McQuarrieChristopher brings his own style of action to this film to make us entertained from start to finish. (8/10)

Action: Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation has brilliant action sequences through the whole film. (9/10)

Thriller: Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation keeps you on the edge of your seat from the opening sequence until the end credits. (10/10)

Settings: Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation uses each setting to create another action sequence that all works but nothing to make us think they are important to actual story. (6/10)

Suggestion: Mission Impossible – Rogue Nation is a must watch this year as it is easily one of the best action films of the year. (Watch)

Best Part: Morocco chase.

Worst Part: I think there is more to come from the Brandt character.

Action Scene Of The Film: Morocco chase.

Funniest Scene: No masks.

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: No

Oscar Chances: No

Runtime: 2 Hour 11 Minutes

Tagline:  Go rogue

Trivia: The stunt coordinator told Simon Pegg that Cruise was going to do all the driving because he didn’t have any driver better than him.

Overall: Spy films have never felt more action packed.

Rating 85