Guardians of the Tomb (2018)

Director: Kimble Rendall

Writer: Kimble Rendall, Paul Staheli (Screenplay) Kimble Rendall, Jonathan Scanlon (Story)

Starring: Bingbing Li, Kellan Lutz, Kelsey Grammer, Chun Wu, Shane Jacobson, Stef Dawson, Jason Chong

 

Plot: An innocent discovery of a well-preserved mummified Chinese Emperor from 200 B.C. unearths a two-thousand-year-old nightmare, a secret that should have remained buried.


Tagline – Unearth the legend. Unleash the curse.

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Terrible Adventure

 

Story: Guardians of the Tomb starts when pharmaceutical business man Mason (Grammer) turns to the daughter of his former partner Jia (Li) to search for her brother Luke (Wu) who went missing during the latest search for a cure that would put the company back on the map.

Jia joins Mason, survival expert Jack Ridley (Lutz), Gary (Jacobson), Milly (Dawson) and Chen (Chong) in search for the answers in the tomb, a tomb which is filled with deadly spiders that could bring a new cure for diseases.

 

Thoughts on Guardians of the Tomb

 

Characters – Jia is a specialist in venoms and dangerous animals from around the world, she knows how to remain calm around them if somebody is infected, she is forced into the field after her brother goes missing on his latest expedition, where she must use her own expert skills to keep the team alive and guide them out alive. Jack Ridley is bough in because of his skills in survival situations, he is here to keep the team safe. Mason is the co-founder of company, he has seen his partner killed and is always looking to push the boundaries in search new products which could help make him money in the pharmaceutical world, he leads the team after his own men go missing. Luke is the younger brother to Jia, he goes on the adventures, with his latest one seeing him go missing, he is working for Mason too.

PerformancesBingbing Li is easily the best of performers in this film, she does look like she is trying unlike most of the rest of the leading members of the cast. Kellan Lutz continues to fall into the generic soldier figure, offering nothing new, Kelsey Grammer does seem to be wasted in his role, he would have been better to not go on the adventure too. Chun Wu is solid enough in what is a smaller role, though it he could have done more with more screen time.

StoryThe story follows a rescue mission after a discovery mission goes wrong inside an ancient tomb in China. This is a story we have seen before, we know how ancient tombs tend to play out, with traps only this time we get spiders that are protecting a tomb. We have greed, family and memories planning out for the characters, even we do end up just going through the, spiders are coming lets run storyline way too often. This is simply enough without being anything original or enjoyable.

Adventure/HorrorThe adventure involved in the film follows the characters as they go through the tomb. The horror in the film comes from the spiders being deadly.

SettingsThe film keeps us going through the tombs with each room offering a new problem for the team to face.

Special EffectsThe effects come from the spiders which at times are awful looking CGI, in a place where we could have had practical ones.


Scene of the Movie –
Couldn’t find one.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The CGI spiders.

Final ThoughtsThis is a disappoint adventure horror that could have been a lot of fun, only to become bland, predictable and just becomes forgettable quickly.

 

Overall: Forgettable.

Rating

 

 

ABC Film Challenge – Action – O – Origin War (2016)

Director: Shane Abbess

Writer: Shane Abbess, Brian Cachia (Screenplay)

Starring: Kellan Lutz, Daniel MacPherson, Isabel Lucas, Luke Ford, Rachel Griffiths, Temuera Morrison

 

Plot: Set in the future in a time of interplanetary colonization, an unlikely pair race against an impending global crisis and are confronted by the monsters that live inside us all.


Tagline – A father on a mission, a convict on the run, must fight for the future. The countdown has begun

Runtime: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Sci-Fi Pilot Episode

 

Story: The Osiris Child starts in the future where colonization has become the normal. LT Kane Sommerville (MacPherson) was a once great pilot whose accident left many dead, now he works on one of these planets, split from his family, when his daughter Indi (Croft) visits, unable to take her to the base he leaves her in the big city.

When a virus outbreak happens on the surface, the base is on lockdown, only for this to be a cover up for a monster they created outbreak and he must escape to the surface, where he meets escaped prisoner Sy Lombrok (Lutz) as the two reluctantly work together to save Kane’s daughter.

 

Thoughts on The Osiris Child

 

Characters – Lt Kane Summerville is a disgraced pilot working on a remote planet, his career has cost him his family being away from his daughter. He will get a chance to redeem himself when his daughter is put in danger, he rushes against time to save her from the impending destruction of the planet. He sees this as his final chance to make up for his mistakes. Sy Lombrok is one of the prisoners on the planet, he reluctantly joins Kane on his journey giving him his chance for redemption. Gyp is one of the people that joins the men on the journey, she has lived on the surface of the planet and enjoys a drink or two General Lynex is the one planning the destroying the planet after her own experiment goes wrong, she doesn’t care how many people will die to cover up their mistake.

PerformancesDaniel MacPherson in the leading role is strong who is willing to do anything for his daughter, it isn’t the most difficult role though. Kellan Lutz as the brooding criminal with a secret for his imprisonment does well through the film. Isabel Lucas and Rachel Griffiths both struggle to deliver on the standards involved.

StoryThe story follows a military pilot teaming up with a prisoner to save his daughter before the newly colonized planet is destroyed to cover up the mistake by the military. We know this type of story and it does play out like a video game, with each stage becoming more difficult. This story does feel like it is just a set up for a bigger concept, with the story told in chapter form too helps that theory. The story does have plenty of sup-plots which could have been investigated in more depth, which a film couldn’t have offered, because they are interesting and get flown over without given that much time on.

Action/Fantasy/Horror/Sci-FiThe action in this film feels very safe with one plane chase, bit of driving then a few bullets flying at the monsters. The horror elements in the film comes from the origin of the monsters which will be killing machines. The sci-fi world is brilliant because we get to see just how going to new worlds could happen.

SettingsThe world building in the film is the highlight because the new planet system feels like we could see a massive scale behind everything which shows us just how prepared this film is for the story to open up for more too.

Special EffectsThe effects are simple enough, the monsters don’t always look that scary though.


Scene of the Movie –
The original sin.

That Moment That Annoyed Me It feels like a pilot.

Final ThoughtsSimple sci-fi action film that feels like it should be preparing for something much bigger.

 

Overall: Simple and effective.

Rating

 

 

Movie Reviews 101 Halloween Midnight Horror – A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)

logoDirector: Samuel Bayer

Writer: Wesley Strick, Eric Heisserer (Screenplay) Wesley Strick (Story) Wes Craven (Characters)

Starring: Jackie Earle Haley, Kyle Gallner, Rooney Mara, Katie Cassidy, Thomas Dekker, Kellan Lutz, Clancy Brown, Connie Britton

 

Plot: The spectre of a dead child rapist haunts the children of the parents who murdered him, stalking and killing them in their dreams.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Remake Deserves Better Praise

 

Story: A Nightmare on Elm Street starts by taking us back to Springwood and puts us into a nightmare of Dean Russell (Lutz) where he meets Freddy Krueger (Haley) before waking up and introducing to all the characters, Nancy (Mara) working in the diner Kris (Cassidy), Quentin (Gallner) and Jesse (Dekker). Continuing the opening sequence we see Dean fall back asleep and it is here where Freddy takes his first victim.

We start to see the side effects of the death of Dean as Kris starts to try and learn about why she was in photos as a young girl with Dean and never remembers being friends with him at that age. The friends all start having the nightmares about Freddy and the friends have to try and find a way to stay alive. The truth about who Freddy is takes a different turn this time around which brings the connection to him a lot closer to home for our characters.

A Nightmare on Elm Street is a re-imaging of what can only be put as a classic, people slammed this movie right left and centre. I have gone through all of the Elm Street films in a week and I can safely say this remake deserves higher praise that what it got. The film doesn’t waste too much time explaining about Freddy but instead looks into the idea that the children actually have a connection with Freddy before he is killed. I also liked the idea that the story teases the idea that Freddy could have been innocent. On the negative side of this we lose the serial killer side downgrading Freddy to child molester (which I know is still bad but he doesn’t have the same level of threat). We do end up having a couple of similar deaths which doesn’t seem to fit the idea of the re-creation, we also have re-hashed lines that don’t fit the situation. I also hated the final scene but both films use this to make us question everything we have seen. Overall the story does give us new ideas but it is the ideas of repeating older storylines ruining the idea of a re-imagination. (6/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Jackie Earle Haley: Freddy Krueger is the serial killer from our teenager’s dreams he is darker than previous outing but still possess his sinister laugh. We learn what happened to Freddy but what is much more interesting in this outing is we get teased about his potential innocence. Jackie does a good job in the role bringing a new darker style to the icon. (7/10)

 freddy

Kyle Gallner: Quentin Smith is the fellow student who has a crush on Nancy and as Freddy starts taking his victims he ends up working with her to save themselves before it is too late. Kyle does a solid job in the role but doesn’t really shine to the level required. (5/10)

quentin

Rooney Mara: Nancy Holbrook is our leading lady who works with Quentin to try and save herself from Freddy, she digs into the past to learn the terrifying truth about who Freddy really is. Rooney has openly admitted she did this role for the money and you can see in her performance because we all know the potential she has. (5/10)

 nancy

Katie Cassidy: Kris Fowles is the false lead in the film much like the original had who starts getting visions of Freddy but most importantly starts putting together the connection between her and her friends at a younger age. Katie gives a solid performance continuing her horror trend as a victim. (6/10)

 kris

Thomas Dekker: Jesse Braun is the teenager who is left to be responsible for the killing of Kris even though we see he had nothing to do with it. Jesse helps pass on the message about what is happen to Nancy before being killed. Thomas does a solid job but never really gets enough time on screen to make an impact. (6/10)

 

Support Cast: A Nightmare on Elm Street has a supporting cast that includes the parents that are covering up the secret and for the most part that is all we have as extra cast members.

 

Director Review: Samuel Bayer – Samuel does a solid job directing bringing a new approach to a much loved film which works in places but not in others. (6/10)

 

Horror: A Nightmare on Elm Street brings a creepy darker side to the story but struggles to reach any real scare levels. (7/10)

Mystery: A Nightmare on Elm Street adds in a mystery angle about the connection between the children and Freddy. (9/10)

Thriller: A Nightmare on Elm Street keeps you guessing to what the connection is because it goes in a different direction that we have seen previously. (7/10)

Settings: A Nightmare on Elm Street keeps the settings similar to what we would expect to see and have seen before adding to the horror levels. (7/10)
Special Effects
: A Nightmare on Elm Street uses good effects to create the nightmare sequences and Freddy make up. (8/10)

Suggestion: A Nightmare on Elm Street is one to try, I know people love the original and will always compare it but as a stand-alone movie this is actually a solid horror film. (Horror Fans Try)

 

Best Part: Teasing the idea of the innocent Freddy.

Worst Part: Showing us he wasn’t innocent.

Kill Of The Film: Dean because it is the only original one.

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $115 Million

Budget: $27 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

Tagline: Never Sleep Again.

Trivia: Johnny Depp accompanied his friend Jackie Earle Haley to auditions for A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). Instead of Haley being chosen for a role, it was Depp who was spotted by director Wes Craven, who asked him if he would like to read for a part. Depp got a part in that film, Haley didn’t, but Haley would go on to play Freddy in this remake 26 years later.

 

Overall: A brave re-imagination that brings new ideas to the franchise while still using the older ones, better than people give it credit for but no classic.

Rating 75

The Expendables 3 (2014)

logoDirector: Patrick Hughes

Writer: Sylvester Stallone, Creighton Rothenberger, Katrin Benedikit (Screenplay) Dave Callaham (Characters)

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Harrison Ford, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mel Gibson, Wesley Snipes, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Kelsey Grammer, Antonio Banderas, Victor Ortiz, Ronda Rousey, Kellan Lutz, Jet Li, Glen Powell

 

Plot: Barney augments his team with new blood for a personal battle: to take down Conrad Stonebanks, the Expendables co-founder and notorious arms trader who is hell bent on wiping out Barney and every single one of his associates.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Mindless Enjoyment

 

Story: The Expendables 3 stars by Barney (Stallone) and his crew trying an ambitious assault on a train to rescue Doc (Snipes) cue the over the top opening action sequence. Barney, Doc along with Christmas (Statham), Gunner (Lundgren) and Toll Road (Couture) meet up Caesar (Crews) and go off onto the next mission. This mission will bring them face to face with an old enemy who was long thought dead Stonebanks (Gibson). Beaten down Trench (Schwarzenegger) and new addition Drummer (Ford) get and give the next status update before gearing up to take on Stonebanks again.

Barney decides not to risk his long-time friends on the next mission and along with old associate Bonaparte (Grammer) helps him build a new younger team which includes Thorn (Powell), Mars (Ortiz), Luna (Rousey) and Smilee (Lutz). With his team together and an old favour called in on Trench, Barney sets out to stop Stonebanks. The plans seems to go down well but Stonebanks has a plan and this leads to Barney’s new team getting captured leaving Barney to go back alone but Galgo (Banderas) joins him before Barney’s old team show up to join him in saving the day and rescuing his old team.

The Expendables 3 is never going to be a film to challenge you on a story level, it does all we want when we go to see an action film with any of these stars in. I do feel this one tries to make the story slightly more personally and also tries to pass the baton onto a younger cast without dismissing the originals. Let’s be honest we don’t care what the story is really about we just want to see these guys and girl this time kick ass and survive impossible odds. (7/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Sylvester Stallone: Barney the leader of the unit known as the Expendables he faces tough choices when an old enemy he thought was dead returns and wants revenge on him and his team. Sylvester does a good job in the role that is all enjoyable from him. (7/10)

 barney

Jason Statham, Wesley Snipes, Randy Couture, Terry Crews and Dolph Lundgren: Lee Christmas, Doc, Toll Road, Caesar and Gunner. I have decided to look at each team. First the originals with the addition of Wesley Snipes all the characters are fun poke fun at their age compared to the new team. (7/10)

original

Harrison Ford and Arnold Schwarzenegger: Drummer and Trench while both are with CIA both work with Barney to get Stonebanks. Both the actors get to pole fun at themselves and in Ford character stick the fingers up to Willis via Stallone’s script. (6/10)

 drummer

Glen Powell, Victor Ortiz, Ronda Rousey, Kellan Lutz: Thorn, Mars, Luna and Smilee when Barney needs a younger team he picks this group of misfits who can bring the fight into the next era. All four do well with their limited screen time and look like they could fit in with any of the rest of the cast. (7/10)

 team

Mel Gibson: Stonebanks an old friend turned enemy against the Expendables he is now a war criminal that has to be bought down. Mel does a good job while trying to do the same and Van Damme last time out. (7/10)

 gibson

Antonio Banderas: Galgo the man desperate to prove himself who gets shot down at first but finally gets his chance. Antonio does a great job and is easily the scene stealer this time around. (8/10)

 banderas

Director Review: Patrick Hughes – Patrick gives us everything we have come to expect from these stars, plenty of guns a blazing. (7/10)

 

Action: The Expendables 3 is full of action be it fire fights, hand to hand combat or just blowing stuff up. (9/10)

Thriller: The Expendables 3 does struggle to bring the tension to the party but you can forgive it because of the action. (4/10)

Chemistry: The Expendables 3 has great chemistry between the cast showing a real unite between them all. (9/10)

Settings: The Expendables 3 uses it settings to make a good combat scene showing how far into conflict these characters will go. (9/10)

Suggestion: The Expendables 3 is one for the action junkies to enjoy, don’t expect anything serious just sit and enjoy it. (Action Fans Watch)

 

Best Part: Banderas steals the film.

Worst Part: Still not enough Jet Li.

Action Scene Of The Film: Final Showdown

Funniest Scene: Banderas introduction.

Favourite Quote: Lee Christmas ‘You were stupid enough to get yourself into this mess! And we’re the only ones crazy enough to get you out of it!’

 

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Has talks

Post Credits Scene: No

Similar Too: Any action films that these guys have done

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $206 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 6 Minutes

Tagline: New team. New attitude. New mission.

 

Overall: Does Exactly What it Says on the Tin

Rating 74

The Legend of Hercules (2014)

logoDirector: Renny Harlin

Writer: Sean Hood, Daniel Giat, Renny Harlin, Giulio Steve (Screenplay)

Starring: Kellan Lutz, Gaia Weiss, Scott Adkins, Roxanne McKee, Liam Garrigan, Liam McIntyre, Rade Serbedzija, Johnathon Scaech

 

Plot: In Ancient Greece 1200 B.C., a queen succumbs to the lust of Zeus to bear a son promised to overthrow the tyrannical rule of the king and restore peace to a land in hardship. But this prince, Hercules, knows nothing of his real identity or his destiny. He desires only one thing: the love of Hebe, Princess of Crete, who has been promised to his own brother. When Hercules learns of his greater purpose, he must choose: to flee with his true love or to fulfil his destiny and become the true hero of his time. The story behind one of the greatest myths is revealed in this action-packed epic – a tale of love, sacrifice and the strength of the human spirit.

 

Verdict: The Legend of the Scorpion King, umm I Mean Hercules

 

Story: With the tried and tested story of betrayal by ones king leading to an incredible journey to return to take the throne from a tyrant king. Slap in the name Hercules you can sale this on the fact a real life mythical hero and son of the God Zeus. This does mean he has an unfair advantage in any combat with his added strength and speed. I do feel this didn’t need to use the name Hercules, but choose to make things easier for the audience to understand how he became powerful. It really is the basic overcome betrayal story that needs no imagination just a sit down and enjoy film. (7/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Kellan Lutz: Hercules the son of Zeus, disowned by his King and left for dead by being sold into slavery, before he starts to fight for his freedom and raise a nation to stop the tyrant king. Kellan has a perfect look for a Hercules, his fighting skills work to his advantage but he doesn’t shine on the delivery of his lines. (7/10)

 hercules

Gaia Weiss: Hebe the Princess of Crete who has fallen in love with Hercules, but is to be married to his brother Iphicles against her will. Typical Princess role who wants to put up a fight but knows her happiness is not as important compared to the safety of her people. (6/10)

princess

Scott Adkins: King Amphirtyon the tyrant who invades whoever he wants to make sure everyone knows how powerful he really is, he has his son Iphicles ready to step into his throne when the time comes. Good basic king role but he does get to show off his fighting skills by the time the film ends. (7/10)

 king

Roxanne McKee: Queen Alcmene mother of Hercules who wants to see her son rise up and take over, treating the people correctly, but her faith in her Gods will put her in danger from her husband King Amphirtyon. Good supporting performance. (7/10)

 

Liam Garrigan: Iphicles the next in line to be king, when it comes to combat Hercules eclipses anything he has achieved in battle. Good performance with his character has a constant look of evil on him. (7/10)

 broyther

Liam McIntyre: Sotiris a general sent into battle with restricted soldiers who befriends Hercules and the two of them join forces to lead the take down of the king. Good supporting performance. (7/10)

 

Director Review: Renny Harlin – Good basic action film created following the ABC rules perfectly. (7/10)

 

Action: The fights all look good mixing in slow motion 3D effects add a little but not much. (8/10)

Settings: Basic settings created with the set locations looking goof but the travelling ones leaving little to the imagination. (7/10)
Special Effects
: You can see a lot of the CGI effects here and the 3D doesn’t add much to the film. (5/10)

Suggestion: This is one to try, but in all honesty you have a choice of three Hercules films this year and this wouldn’t be my first choice. (Try)

 

Best Part: The 6 on 1 Battle.

Worst Part: Nothing original here

Action Scene Of The Film: The escape from the chains

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Because it didn’t make money I think no, but it could have the next chapter if we didn’t have a flood of Hercules films this year.

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $61 Million

Budget: $70 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 39 Minutes

Tagline: Every man has a destiny

 

Overall: Been Here, Seen This, New Hero Please

Rating 66