The Titan (2018)

Director: Lennart Ruff

Writer: Max Hurwitz (Screenplay) Arash Amel (Story)

Starring: Sam Worthington, Tayor Schilling, Tom Wilkinson, Agyness Deyn, Nathalie Emmanuel, Noah Jupe, Corey Johnson

 

Plot: A military family takes part in a ground-breaking experiment of genetic evolution and space exploration.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 37 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: The Pilot for a Show?

 

Story: The Titan starts as we learn that the world is facing extinction, Professor Martin Collingwood (Wilkinson) is conducting experiments to select a candidate to go through a genetic evolution that would make their body ready to land and survive on Saturn’s moon Titan.

LT Rick Janssen (Worthington) moves his family wife Dr Abi Janssen (Schilling) and son Lucas (Jupe) to the training camp as one of the candidates and easily one of the most promising. When the candidates start showing side effects, Abi starts investigating just what the experiments are about.

 

Thoughts on The Titan

 

Characters – LT Rick Janssen is one of the candidates selected because an unbelievable survival story, he quickly becomes the number candidate with his ability to adapt to change better than any of the others selected, though the change is hard on him and his family. Dr Abi Janssen is the wife of Rick, she isn’t involved in the experiment though does pick up on the idea that something doesn’t seem right with what is being done to her husband. Professor Martin Collingwood is the man running the experiment, he knows and believes this could be the last hope for humanity

PerformancesSam Worthington in the leading role is solid enough in the leading role without doing too much with his role, this is the same as Taylor Schilling who for the first half of the film she doesn’t do too much, but quickly becomes the standout of the second half. Tom Wilkinson in his scientist role is one he could do in his sleep.

StoryThe story here shows us how the end of the world is coming and we follow an experiment which is designed to hopefully offer humanity a new hope. Now this story is misleading because we are sold on the idea of the evolving to surviving on Titan, rather than just watching the almost training process for the change. This story will leave people wanting more and less because we are promised so much either from the race against time side of the film or the future we are searching for, with neither getting the focus needed. There is also a moment where the experiment gets challenged on ethics only to fall short and never follow through. This story has too many missed opportunities for a truly challenging sci-fi story.

Sci-FiThe sci-fi side of the film shows us just how the scientist are planning to find a new home for the human race when the world needs to become saved. This is solid enough idea, though never uses them enough.

SettingsThe film takes us to a remote base for the experiment, it has nothing that makes it stand out or make it memorable.

Special EffectsThe effects are solid enough for the most part, we do to see moments of change even though it isn’t anything that isn’t that much standing out here.


Scene of the Movie –
The underwater moment.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The lack of time in space.

Final ThoughtsThis is a film that feels like a pilot to a TV show, it has all the potential to be fantastic, only to not including the more fascinating parts of the ideas.

 

Overall: Fails to capture the potential.

Rating

 

 

Advertisements

A Quiet Place (2018)

Director: John Krasinski

Writer: John Krasinski, Bryan Woods, Scott Beck (Screenplay)

Starring: John Krasinski, Emily Blunt, Noah Jupe, Millicent Simmonds, Leon Russom, Cade Woodward, Doris McCarthy

 

Plot: A family lives an isolated existence in utter silence, for fear of an unknown threat that follows and attacks at any sound.


Tagline – If they can hear you, they can hunt you.

Runtime: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Nerve Shredding Horror

 

Story: A Quiet Place starts as we follow the Abbott family, 89 days into an apocalypse, father Lee (Krasinski), mother Evelyn (Blunt) and children Regan (Simmons), Marcus (Jupe), Beau (Woodward), they must stay silent or an unknown predator will come for them, we see how they get supplies and travel on created paths which won’t make noise. When Beau makes a noise with a toy he has taken, we learn the devastation of the predator.

About one year later we return to the family, living on a farm, still in as close to silence as they can get, we do have tension between Regan and Lee, while Evelyn is expecting a new baby. The new two days will show how sudden the threat can be as the predators are attracted by the additional noise and the battle to survive is on.

 

Thoughts on A Quiet Place

 

Characters – The characters focus on the family dynamics, we have the father Lee that is desperately trying to find a way to keep his family safe, while supporting them by hunting and building a defence, Evelyn that is holding everyone together, while preparing for her next child, Regan is the most interesting character, in a world of silence, her character being deaf adds a dimension to how she can cope better than the rest, she is filled with guilt because of what happened to her younger brother, believing her father blames her. Marcus is the youngest and the one Lee wants to prepare to take over the duties in case something ever happened to him. These are the characters we spend most of the film with and you do want to see what they are getting up to.

PerformancesJohn Krasinski took dual roles here, behind the camera too which he gets it perfectly correct, his acting performance is wonderful too and being opposite his real wife helps get that extra level of emotion be needs as a husband and father. Emily Blunt, the one that can do no wrong, she is brilliant too throughout the film. the two child stars are fantastic here, giving us a performance that makes us believe they are actually related too.

StoryThe story here is simple, a family trying to survive in a world where any noise will attract a predator that will kill you, you can’t run, you can try to hide and you will not beat it. The story is brave because it shows you the predator early on, which is what is needed because it shows you just how sudden death will be if you make a sound. Watching the family dynamics is interesting too because we are seeing a family dealing with grief and guilt for what happened, while also trying to survive in this world. How they go about it is interesting to see and apart from generic horror mistakes this story will keep you on the edge throughout the film.

Horror/ThrillerThe horror in this movie comes from knowing you will not survive an encounter with this predator that hunts through sound, we are kept on edge for the whole film which helps us believe the world we are entering.

SettingsThe world created seems simple, it does feel lived in because of the time the characters are meant to have been surviving in 400days+ and using the environment to survive shows us how the human knowledge could find a way.

Special EffectsThe effects are mostly used for the world around the predators, they look scary, they are terrifying and effects show us what they can do.


Scene of the Movie –
The whole night sequence is edge of your seat.

That Moment That Annoyed Me This is a strange moan, as this is meant to be selected to be at times. We sometimes hear what the deaf Regan hears, which adds something haunting to the movie, then we have music which works, I would have loved to have seen this whole film from what she hears, pure silence.

Final ThoughtsThis is easily a contender for horror film of the year, it is fantastic, edge of your seat and by the end you will need regain your breath.

 

Overall: Must see Horror movie of the year.

Rating

 

 

Wonder (2017)

Director: Stephen Chbosky

Writer: Stephen Chbosky, Steve Conrad, Jack Thorne (Screenplay) R.J. Palacio (Novel)

Starring: Jacob Tremblay, Owen Wilson, Julia Roberts, Izabela Vidovic, Noah Jupe, Mancy Patinkin, Danielle Rose Russell

 

Plot: Based on the New York Times bestseller, WONDER tells the incredibly inspiring and heartwarming story of August Pullman, a boy with facial differences who enters fifth grade, attending a mainstream elementary school for the first time.


Tagline – Auggie Pullman will change your world

Runtime: 1 Hour 53 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Emotionally Moving

 

Story: Wonder starts as we meet the 10-year-old Auggie (Tremblay), he has had 21 surgeries to both save his life and rebuild his face after being born with a birth defect, he has been home schooled by his mother Isabel (Roberts) his whole life, with his father Nate (Wilson) and older sister Via (Vidovic) always there to support him, at home he is like no other 10-year-old.

Auggie is going to be starting middle school for the first time, this is a huge step for the young boy who is used to people staring at him, but now he enters school, where it is kids, who are less likely to accept him at first. Auggie hates school, he gets picked on because of his looks, but over time he learns to accept this and tries to let people in. This is where the story gets smart, we move away from seeing everything from Auggie’s perspective and follow of Via’s life has been affected by Auggie need the attention more, she is starting High School and is feeling just as alone in need of a friend. We follow fellow middle school student Jack Will (Jupe) one of the kids selected to try and help Auggie through school and how he feels about being pushed into being the friend. We finally follow Miranda (Russell) who was Via’s best friend and almost like a sister to Auggie too, she has become distant from Via and we learn her growth through the year.

We follow a school year for these people, the highs, the lows and the moments that will shape their futures.

 

Thoughts on Wonder

 

Characters – Auggie the 10-year-old born with a birth defect, that still has the scares from the surgeries to save his life, he learns about starting school, meeting new people who instantly question his looks, he learns a lot in this year, but most of all people learn a lot from his bravery. He dreams of space and loves Star Wars and uses it to help him through the difficult moments of his days. Nate is the father of the household, he loves his children and wants them to have the best future they can, he puts everything into a positive spin for Auggie. Isabel has home schooled Auggie for his whole life, she gave up her Masters to do this, with him starting school she can continue the work always worried about his well-being. Via the big sister, she does love her brother deeply, but we learn that she needs some attention too, she struggles inside with her problem, ones that aren’t shown, alone in her new high school, she does try to fit in and learns to break free. We do meet the fellow middle school students, we have the main bully who is a by the books character and we get the ones that want to accept Auggie, the ones that are brave enough to do this first, showing they accept the person other the look. Miranda was Via’s best friend, but this year she is different, we learn the reason for her actions through the film, but I do wish we spent more time with this character because of the moments we learn about.

PerformancesJacob Tremblay, you know the kid from Room, he is fantastic in this leading role again, showing us that was not a one off, this kid has talent. Julia Roberts is strong through the film, while I wouldn’t say the character is overly challenging to play I do think Roberts brings it to life in ways only she could. Owen Wilson, where has he been for the last couple of years? This shows that we missed him, he is a great father figure, he has a smile on his face hiding his own fears in every scene and the one scene he is broken, you join him in his tears. Izabela Vidovic mostly likely what get as many people talking about her performances, but don’t take anything away from her, she is great and at times you want to spend more time with her characters story. The rest of the cast do a wonderful job too as we understand every decision the characters are making.

StoryThe story does focus mostly on Auggie and his first day at school, leading into his first year at school, which on its own, is something we have seen before. It is a good go to story because it will teach about understanding people’s differences both physical and mental, this check all those boxes. Where this story is stronger than just that is following the lives of the people around Auggie, be it his sister who doesn’t get an equal amount of attention while having her own problems. A best friend that’s world has come crashing down and has pushed people away or the young boy that already has the pressure thrown on him, now needing to learn to accept an outsider, while he was once that outsider. I think showing how the lives of others have change is just as important for this story to show, the year these characters must go through.

FamilyI do think the family could enjoy this, I think it has enough to make you smile and laugh together and the moments that will make you cry too.

SettingsNew York is the setting, one of the busiest cities in the world and it shows how Auggie will need to get used to the crowds that are out of his control, where people will judge him unfairly, the school is the first steps for him.


Scene of the Movie –
Graduation.

That Moment That Annoyed Me While diving into Miranda’s year, we miss that one scene where the two make-ups.

Final ThoughtsThis film will make laugh, smile and cry all the way through, it has so much about accepting people for being different both for their flaws and strengths.

 

Overall: Fantastic, moving, emotional and beautiful movie.

Rating