Transformers: The Last Knight (2017)

Director: Michael Bay

Writer: Art Marcum, Matt Holloway, Ken Nolan (Screenplay) Akiva Goldsman, Art Marcum, Matt Holloway, Ken Nolan (Story)

Starring: Mark Wahlberg, Anthony Hopkins, Josh Duhamel, Laura Haddock, Santiago Cabrera, Isabela Moner, Stanley Tucci

 

Plot: Humans and Transformers are at war, Optimus Prime is gone. The key to saving our future lies buried in the secrets of the past, in the hidden history of Transformers on Earth.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Mad Action Film

 

Story: Transformers: The Last Knight starts as we learn about the ancient battles the English had where the Transformers helped Merlin (Tucci) win the battle. The world has now banned from most places on the Earth but in Cuba they are still welcomed. Optimus Prime is gone and the Transformers continue to arrival. Cade Yeager (Wahlberg) continues to protect the Transformers with Colonel William Lennox (Duhamel) refuses let the good Autobots from being captured but the impending return of Megatron brings the threats to Earth.

Meanwhile in England Sir Edmund Burton (Hopkins) is preparing for the final battle, Vivian Wembley (Haddock) doesn’t believe in the legends of King Arthur and her tours prove what it could be. On Cybertron Optimus Prime wants to rebuild his home planet which means returning to Earth to find an ancient Staff giving to Merlin.

Cade finds himself teaming up with Vivian in the middle of the battle between the Decepticons, Autobots and the Government as Cybertron heads towards Earth which would cause the end of the world.

 

Thoughts on Transformers: The Last Knight

 

Characters/PerformanceCade Yeager is now an outlaw hiding the Autobots in a junkyard, here he lives a quiet life but when a new threat heads toward Earth he finds himself being selected as the Last Knight that can fight to save the Earth. Sir Edmund Burton is the guardian of the secrets of the Transformers, he fills in all the gaps as to what is happening as well as bringing together the team. Vivian Wembley is an anti-believer in the history of King Arthur but when she learns she is the last descendant of Merlin she must work with Cade to save the Earth. Vivian is added for a new love interest for Cade and the high educated between the two.

We have the military characters which includes the returning Colonel Lennox, who just do military stuff and mostly get in the way. The King Arthur and Merlin figure who just re-tell the story we know. We have the comic relief with Izabella, Jimmy and many of the Transformers but we never get too close to any of the characters.

The performances are what you have come to expect, Wahlberg is good in the leading role even if he can look lost at times he has the charisma to lead the films, Laura Haddock adds class with her performance by not only being the stunning woman but a smart one, and Anthony Hopkins enjoys the chance to have fun in a mega blockbuster.

StoryThe Transformers storylines are never the most in detail stories, we know this by now on film number 5. We mix into the Transformers story King Arthur legend, well it is new and does continue to world build and it is as nonsense as you expect for a Transformers film because if we are being honest the story isn’t the most important part of the film.

Action/Adventure/Sci-FiThe action is massive once more with Transformer battles in a giant scale and the city-wide battles and even ocean size battles being a massive experience. The adventure takes across the world again to save the world from not only Megatron but Cybertron this time. The sci-fi side does bring us into a world of giant robots that can be vehicles in a giant space battle.

SettingsWe have a couple of settings, we see how Chicago still devastated by the effects of the previous films, the hidden locations of Cade at the Autobots, we also have London being used for the chase sequences and while this isn’t anything new it is a fun watch, but in the end, we just use locations of iconic landmarks.

Special EffectsThe effects for the battles are great throughout the film bring us into the story to enjoy the massive over the top battles.

Final ThoughtsThis is a film that always gets criticized because it doesn’t have the most intense storyline but the reality is this is one franchise that is all about the massive action sequences that take away of beliefs needed for the world of Transformers.

 

Overall: Bonkers, Enjoyable, nonsense action film

Rating

 

 

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Beauty and the Beast (2017)

Director: Bill Condon

Writer: Stephen Chbosky, Evan Spiliotopoulos (Screenplay)

Starring: Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans, Josh Gad, Kevin Kline, Hattie Morahan, Hayden Gwynne, Ewan McGregor, Ian McKellen, Emma Thompson, Stanley Tucci

 

Plot: An adaptation of the Disney fairy tale about a monstrous-looking prince and a young woman who fall in love.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Beauty and the Beasty CGI

 

Story: Beauty and the Beast starts as we learn about the curse placed upon the selfish prince who becomes the Beast (Stevens). Years, an unknown number of which never gets explained either pass, as the castle, the Prince and his memories are forgotten.

Meanwhile in the small French village is Belle (Watson) a British young woman who reads and that is taboo in this town, she is considered different but her father Maurice (Kline) continues to encourage her to remain different. Enter the arrogant Captain Gaston (Evans) who wants Belle’s hand in marriage but she isn’t having that.

When Maurice gets captured after taking the wrong path by the Beast, Belle goes in search of him, taking his place as the prisoner of the Beast, learning about the curse and the household objects that are alive, candlestick Lumiere (McGregor), clock Cogsworth (McKellen), teapot Mrs Potts (Thomspon), tea cup Chip (Mack) and many others who are trying their hardest to break the curse on the Beast.

We know the story is all about love and that is the only way to break the curse, as time goes by, I say time I think it is more days Belle learns that the Beast isn’t all his appearance appears and he is also much like her struggling to fit in because of he is different and love blossoms in a battle for freedom.

 

Thoughts on Beauty and the Beast

 

Characters/PerformanceBelle is a character I think is good because it does encourage women to be different regardless of what people say, she is a dreamer who isn’t willing to marry just for status. Where I don’t think this character is good is the way she acts like she is better than other people because she is willing to be educated. The Beast is also a mixed feelings character, he was selfish and got what he deserved but he does learn his lesson about his ways going nervous when getting to know Belle. Gaston is by far my favourite character in the film as the typical arrogant captain who thinks he can get what he wants, he is willing to fight rather than hide but you are never meant to root for him. Maurice is fun but I feel plays into my own issues with the film as it plays into time between the village and castle. We also have a lot of fun with the Lumiere character who is trying to make love happen between the two with the other household items all being the highlights of the film.

Performance wise, I found myself wondering why Watson was cast in the lead because she doesn’t convince to the levels needed, while I do think Dan Stevens is a good actor but couldn’t buy him as the Beast. Luke Evans is great in his role pulling off the singing and actor wonderfully. The voice talents are all great too with well established stars in the roles.

StoryLooking at the story we get something that is fully Disney styled, we have the woman who is different in a good way, falling in the love with the outside to avoid the asshole captain/prince, the story encourages individualism and has plenty of fantasy elements about curses. It is all fine and kids could enjoy as well as nostalgic fans.

Family/Fantasy/MusicalThe family can all enjoy this movie, the fantasy elements are good the curse is all great and work for the film. the music is also good with solid singing throughout.

SettingsThe settings all work good, they are mostly CGI creation but are working for how the story is going.

Special EffectsHere is my biggest issue with the movie, the CGI special effects look weak throughout, you can see the green screen throughout which took me out of the film most of the time.

Final ThoughtsThis is a film for the fans out the 1991 version of the film, they will get enough out of this film, I found it too long in places being over an hour long and the CGI left me losing the fantasy side of the film.

 

Overall: Disney will make money but that is the only positive they want.

Rating

 

 

Bryan Singer Weekend – Jack the Giant Slayer (2013)

casting card

 

Plot: The ancient war between humans and a race of giants is reignited when Jack, a young farmhand fighting for a kingdom and the love of a princess, opens a gateway between the two worlds.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Enjoyable Adventure Film

 

Story: Jack the Giant Slayer starts by giving us the story that poor boy Jack and Princess Isabelle who love the story of the giant that came to Earth before being banished. Jack (Hoult) all grown up is trying to sell his horse and cart finding himself in the kingdom of King Brahmwell (McShane) who is trying to keep tabs on his now of age daughter Isabelle. We know Jack made a deal where he ended up getting some beans that just so happen to be magic.

With Isabelle trying to escape her impending marriage to Roderick (Tucci) she finds herself at Jack’s house. When the beanstalk rises it takes Isabelle up into the giant kingdom leading to Elmont (McGregor) Roderick, Jack and Elmont’s men to climb the beanstalk.

Upon reaching the top we learn Roderick’s plan while our character have to learn that not all legends are fairy tales.

Jack the Giant Slayer is a story we should all have known by now but how do you turn this into a feature film, well this is how it is done. We create a battle between humans and the giants filled with generically average characters all with their own motives. I do think the expanded story works but in a world where we have had Lord of the Rings and going through Game of Thrones this comes off slightly short.

 

Actor Review

 

Nicholas Hoult: Jack is the simple farm boy that finds himself selling his house for beans only to discovery that these beans take him to the giant kingdom on top of a beanstalk. Jack must rescue the princess and become the giant slayer he was always destine to become. Nicholas is good in this leading role showing he can be a future star.

Eleanor Tomlinson: Isabelle is the princess of the kingdom that wishes to see more of the world before being wed to the older man Roderick. While she does become the very basic damsel in distress by the end of the film. Eleanor also gives us a good performance even if her character is basically the damsel in distress we don’t see as much anymore.

Ewan McGregor: Elmont is leader of the king’s guard, he is fearless and will give any common man a chance to help do the honourable thing, which includes Jack. He works with Jack to makes sure the princess is safe once the giant from myth become a reality. Ewan has a lot of fun in this role where we get to see him supporting the next generation of stars.

Stanley Tucci: Roderick is planned to be wed to the princess, but he has his own plans which do include bringing down the giants to help him get everything he wants. Stanley plays the typical villain add his own spin to it without being that memorable.

Support Cast: Jack the Giant Slayer has a solid supporting cast but they just get enough real time out of everything involved.

Director Review: Bryan SingerBryan gives us a good enjoyable film even if the CGI comes off slightly iffy.

 

Adventure: Jack the Giant Slayer sends us on the adventure that could well be the first one we ever heard.

Fantasy: Jack the Giant Slayer throws us into the fantasy world where giants live above humans.

Settings: Jack the Giant Slayer has the settings that makes us feel like we are going to be in the world created.
Special Effects
: Jack the Giant Slayer has some bad CGI moments which can take away from these moments.

Suggestion: Jack the Giant Slayer is one I do think people will enjoy but I can see how come people be turned off. (Try It)

 

Best Part: Final battle is very good.

Worst Part: CGI

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $195 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 54 Minutes

Tagline: Prepare for a giant adventure

 

Overall: Solid adventure film that will be the one that will enjoy from the childhood stories.

Ratingcard

 

 

Spotlight (2015)

spotightDirector: Tom McCarthy

Writer: Tom McCarthy, Josh Singer (Screenplay)

Starring: Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, John Slattery, Brian d’Arcy James, Stanley Tucci, Elena Wohl, Gene Amoroso, Billy Crudup

 

Plot: The true story of how the Boston Globe uncovered the massive scandal of child molestation and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese, shaking the entire Catholic Church to its core.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Interesting Factual Film

 

Story: Spotlight starts with a short look at what happened in 1976 Boston where a Priest gets off any charges of molestation. Move forward to 2001 in the Boston Globe where the ‘Spotlight’ team Robby (Keaton), Mike (Ruffalo), Sacha (McAdams) and Matt (James) run an elite segment in the paper. When Marty Baron (Schreiber) comes into the paper people start fearing about their jobs, but one of the first things he does as a stranger to the city is to challenge the Spotlight team to look into the Boston Catholic Church and their molestation case.team

The team of four start looking through the stories from the last 25 years that have all almost gone unpunished and what they dig up will change the way the world sees the Catholic Church forever.

Spotlight is a film that gives us a big history lesson about how corrupt the Catholic Church had become, it shows how easily they could cover up all their wrongs and thought that everything was just fine because of the contribution that made to society. The reality is how big everything got how far up the ranks the corruption within a religious circle things got showing just how bad things were for the innocent victims. This film shows how hard it was to speak up and remember all the things the victims were made to do showing how it has affected their lives forever. If you want a good, no a brilliant history lesson this is one for you.

 

Actor Review

 

Mark Ruffalo: Mike Rezendes is part of the Spotlight team who is liaising with lawyer Mitchell Garabedian who is also trying to take down the Catholic Church on his own, he gets pointed in the right direction as he investigates his side of the story. Mark is brilliant in this role giving us a performance that can go hand in hand with his Zodiac one.

Michael Keaton: Walter ‘Robby’ Robinson is the leader of the Spotlight team who is the one that can confront the higher officials that stand in the rest of the team’s way, he is blunt when it takes on these people. He has the most connections and is one of the most respected people in the newspaper. Michael continues to give brilliant performances after his one in Birdman last time out.robby

Rachel McAdams: Sacha Pfeiffer is one of the Spotlight team who gets to know the victims while being the partner to Robby in the interviews with the Catholic higher ups. She uses her ability to show her empathy towards the victims to help them feel comfortable about their stories. Rachel gives us a brilliant performance in this role where she shows her serious side.

Liev Schreiber: Marty Baron is the man who gets placed in charge of the paper where he comes to Boston to give fresh eyes on the Catholic Church cover up. He tasks the Spotlight team on this story to expose a story he had no idea would be one of the biggest in Catholic Church history. Liev is almost unlike anything you have seen from him before but I would have liked to have seen more from his character.

Support Cast: Spotlight has a brilliant supporting cast that all help get to the bottom of this story.

Director Review: Tom McCarthyTom gives us a brilliant story showing how the world we thought was safe could be filled with so much corruption.

 

Biographical: Spotlight shows just how much hard work had to be put in by a team that trusted each other to come up with their end of the story.

History: Spotlight gives us an example of a power who thought they knew all and could get away with anything and how easy they could be bought down.

Thriller: Spotlight has moments of thrills but it is more about how well the team puts the story together,

Music: Spotlight uses the music to show the moments unfolding without going to heavy on any side of it all.

Settings: Spotlight keeps most of the settings in and around Boston which helps us know where the story first broke.
Suggestion
: Spotlight is one to watch to learn about how the Catholic Church operated, but you do need your serious head on while watching. (Watch)

 

Best Part: The performances are brilliant.

Worst Part: Could be considered too serious for some.

 

Believability: Based on what really happened in Boston.

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Awards: Nominated for 3 Golden Globes including Best Picture, Director and Screenplay

Oscar Chances:

Runtime: 2 Hours 8 Minutes

Tagline:  Break the story. Break the silence.

 

Overall: Brilliant history lesson of one of the biggest scandals in Catholic Church history

Ratingcard

Emma Stone Weekend – Easy A (2010)

logoDirector: Will Gluck

Writer: Bert V Royal (Screenplay)

Starring: Emma Stone, Penn Badgley, Amanda Bynes, Dan Byrd, Thomas Haden Church, Patricia Clarkson, Cam Gigandet, Lisa Kudrow, Malcolm McDowell, Aly Michalka, Stanley Tucci

Plot: A clean-cut high school student relies on the school’s rumour mill to advance her social and financial standing.

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

Verdict: Good Modern Teen Comedy

Story: Easy A starts with Olive (Stone) telling us that rumours have left her reputation being shattered, where she has her best friend Rhiannon (Michalka) who wants Olive to go camping, but she lies about what happened leading to Rhiannon spreading the rumour.

When the rumour starts spreading the whole school seems to learn about Olive’s weekend with Marianne (Bynes) leading the stories due to her religious beliefs. Olive decides to embrace her new popularity in the school even if it is built on lies. Olive has just one person to turn to the gay Brandon (Byrd) who is also suffering from the rumour mill but the two decide to make their own rumour. The problem with this ruins any plans Olive has to be with the guy Todd (Badgley) that she really wants to be with. Just how far can the rumour mill spiral out of control though.

Easy A is a teen movie that I have started to grow out, my generation would be the American Pie franchise era. I think this does bring the idea of high school into the new world well because it still has the social situation and embraces the use of the modern technology. When it comes to the subject matter the film isn’t afraid to explain that is is a modern telling of the Scarlett Letter which I think is different to others who try to bring classic literacy into teen genre. I will say I loved the 80’s movie references but I would question why Olive was watching them. Overall I thought this was a good welcome addition to the teen comedy genre. (7/10)

Actor Review

Emma Stone: Olive is the quiet student who ends up embracing a rumour about her sexually stories. She becomes the talk of the school as they see her as the slut but in the end she is just making money for fake sexual encounters but the rumour starts getting completely out of control. Emma really has sky rocketed after this role showing she had all the talent. (9/10)olive

Support Cast: Easy A has such a big supporting cast that is hard to pick out who were the main supporters, the adult characters played by Thomas Haden Church, Patricia Clarkson, Malcolm McDowell, Stanley Tucci and Lisa Kudrow all give wonderful performances. While the teen characters all gives great performance dealing with Olive’s decisions.

Director Review: Will GluckWill brings us a new era of teen comedy that will be the stand out for the 2010’s. (8/10)

Comedy: Easy A has good comedy moments especially when the rumours start spiralling out of control. (8/10)

Romance: Easy A has good basic teen level romance with nothing too much until the final scene. (7/10)

Settings: Easy A keeps most of the story in and around the high school settings which works for the film. (8/10)

Suggestion: Easy A is one for a the teen comedy fans out there. (Teen Comedy Fans)

Best Part: Emma Stone’s performance.

Worst Part: Being picky, I didn’t like how there was a true supporting lead.

Romantic Moment: Final cliché moment.

Favourite Quote: DillIs everything all right? It sounds like you’re having sex in here, which I know can’t be true due to the fact that you have a homosexual boyfriend.

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $58 Million

Budget: $8 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 32 Minutes

Tagline: Let’s not and say we did.

Overall: Great addition to the teen comedy genre.

Rating 75