Franchise Weekend – The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian (2008)

Director: Andrew Adamson

Writer: Andrew Adamson, Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely (Screenplay) C.S. Lewis (Novel)

Starring: Ben Barnes, Georgie Henley, Skandar Keynes, Williams Moseley, Anna Popplewell, Sergio Castellitto, Peter Dinklage

 

Plot: The Pevensie siblings return to Narnia, where they are enlisted to once again help ward off an evil king and restore the rightful heir to the land’s throne, Prince Caspian.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Magic Lost

 

Story: The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian starts in Narnia where Prince Caspian (Barnes) is taken away from the kingdom for his own safety when his Uncle Miraz (Castellitto) has a son. We move to London, post-war now as we meet the Pevensie children, Lucy (Henley), Edmund (Keynes), Peter (Moseley) and Susan (Popplewell) who find themselves magically transported back to Narnia, a different Narnia to the one they left though.

With Narnia on the verge of another war the children must lead the resistance against Miraz as they all wait in hope of Aslan’s return, but with a battle from within as Prince Caspian clashes with Peter as the children must answer questions to why they abandoned Narnia all those years ago.

 

Thoughts on The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian

 

Characters/PerformanceThe children are now all back in London, they get called back to be the leaders Narnia thought they were going to be. The children all seem to have smaller parts in this film and just doing less of the more we saw first time around. Prince Caspian is a solid character but nothing too important in this battle with the villain just being human makes the threat not are scary as the first time around.

Performance wise, it would be fair to say we have nothing but average at best performances here, the kids are all fine coming off slightly too posh with the rest all feeling like no bigger name actors wanted to get involved in the film.

StoryI feel the story just doesn’t seem to have the magic we had first time around, first the idea the kids just go back after the war seems out of place because the first story seems to be about escaping the war. The battle within Narnia is just a power struggle again but the animals don’t talk as much and it is mostly a human battle losing all the fantasy elements which made the first fun.

Adventure/Family/FantasyThe adventure side of the film does feel lost here, as does the family and fantasy side which showed how Harry Potter was the dominate force at the time.

SettingsThe settings also don’t seem to be as well created as first time, nothing comes off memorable through this one.

Special EffectsWith this seeming to be a human battle the special effects are no as needed in what should be a big fantasy battle film.

Final ThoughtsThis was a huge step back, with a huge budget I just don’t get how it came off as dull as it did.

 

Overall: Poor sequel that should have continued what was created.

Rating

 

 

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Franchise Weekend – The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (2005)

Director: Andrew Adamson

Writer: Ann Peacock, Andrew Adamson, Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely (Screenplay) C.S. Lewis (Book)

Starring: Georgie Henley, Skandar Keynes, Williams Moseley, Anna Popplewell, Tilda Swinton, James McAvoy, Jim Broadbent

 

Plot: Four kids travel through a wardrobe to the land of Narnia and learn of their destiny to free it with the guidance of a mystical lion.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Good Start to a Franchise

 

Story: The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe starts as the Pevensie children Lucy (Henley), Edmund (Keynes), Peter (Moseley) and Susan (Popplewell) are evacuated to the country during World War II.

When the youngest Lucy discovers a wardrobe in the house she finds the magical world of Narnia and Mr Tumnus (McAvoy) who teaches her all about this winter ravished land with the evil White Witch controlling. With Edmund finding his way into Narnia he meets the White Witch (Swinton) who asks him to bring the rest of the children to her kingdom.

When the four children are reunited, they learn they must fight alongside Aslan the lion in a battle against the evil Witch in an adventure they could never imagine.

 

Thoughts on The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

 

Characters/PerformanceLucy, Edmund, Peter and Susan are thee four children, they all have their difference but most of all they work together to succeed on their mission. They must look after each other through the human war and the fantasy war they find themselves fighting in. thee White Witch is a character that works on the villainous side of the story and with her deceiving white image we can get misled to her true nature. With any extra characters being the different fantasy creatures the children meet along the way we know the world we find ourselves in.

Performances now, the four children all do a good job in their roles showing each of the character’s strengths and weakness. Tilda Swinton always makes for a great villain with McAvoy giving us a good supporting performance.

StoryStory wise this plays into the idea of what children could find themselves doing when they have escaped from a war-torn country. I do understand that this is meant to be a real adventure they find themselves on but the reality is it can be looked at as an escape. The idea of a battle between good and evil is all fine and needed for this film as it is the start of a bigger set of stories to come.

Adventure/Fantasy/FamilyThe adventure is massive for these children as they find themselves in a fantasy world they could never imagine, this is one the whole family could find themselves enjoying.

SettingsThe settings all come off very well for this film as we see the bleakness of the world the children find themselves escaping from and the wonder of the fantasy world they find themselves entering.

Special EffectsMost of the special effects here are brilliant, we do have a lot of CGI which in the most part in flawless it would only be the voice acting for some of the creatures that I would question.

Final ThoughtsThis is a good starter for a franchise, it does go generic with the male children doing the fighting and the female being considered for magic and curing style but this franchise came at the wrong time getting buried by the Harry Potter one.

 

Overall: This is how you start a franchise correctly.

Rating

 

 

Captain America: Civil War (2016)

casting cardDirector: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo

Writer: Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely (Screenplay) Mark Millar, Joe Simon, Jack Kirby (Characters)

Starring: Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr, Scarlett Johansson, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Don Cheadle, Jeremy Renner, Chadwick Boseman, Paul Bettany, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Rudd, Emily VanCamp, Tom Holland, Daniel Bruhl, Frank Grillo, William Hurt

 

Plot: Political interference in the Avengers’ activities causes a rift between former allies Captain America and Iron Man.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: The Best So Far

 

Story: Captain America: Civil War starts as we see Captain America (Evans) and his team Black Widow (Johansson), Falcon (Mackie) and Scarlet Witch (Olsen) taking down a criminal unit with their own villain in Crossbones (Grillo). But this does lead to a mistake happening as the heroes cause more damage than they should.

With the government looking to close down the Avengers while Zemo (Bruhl) is making his moves against Hydra.

Tony Stark (Downey Jr) and Captain America both clashing on whether to sign the document that will put a limit on the Avengers action and with this the lines start getting drawn between the two men. Tension increases when the peace talks get attacked with all the fingers pointing at the Winter Soldier (Stan).

Captain America not accepting that Winter Soldier is behind the attacks goes against the new deal finding himself arrested and branded a criminal. Once free the sides are drawn and battle between the superheroes is about to be unleashed.

Captain America: Civil War is the best Avengers movie we have seen to date, this is a simple fact that we have nearly all of the Avengers bar Thor and Hulk in this one with addition too. We have the heroes dealing with the consequences of their actions in previous films. The best addition to this story I would say is that villain, now without giving too much away it is his motivation which is great but while this is great it is also a negative because we don’t get enough time to focus on his side of the story because we are dealing with the battle from within for too long. Fresh off the back of once of the most average superhero films in recent years Batman v Superman this uses the character battles better making each moment a potential end for anyone of the character which really adds the tension needed in this film and I can safely say this is the one that could be saving the Marvel Cinematic Universe from becoming average.

 

Actor Review

 

Chris Evans: Captain America is leading his own team of Avengers that ends with innocent people being killed. This brings in a new world agreement that the Avengers only worked when called upon but Captain isn’t playing by those rules as he wants to prove his old friend Bucky the Winter Soldier is innocent of attacks. He draws his lines against Tony Stark leading to battle between the Avengers themselves. Chris gives his best performance in this film franchise to date.

Robert Downey Jr: Tony Stark is willing to sign the agreement because he is feeling the effects of the innocent lives they have lost. He clashes with Captain making him the law in the battle for superhero supremacy. Robert is good in this role against Captain America which works very well.

Scarlett Johansson: Black Widow is one Captain America’s team but when the agreement is made she finds herself torn between the two men who are forcing fellow superheroes to pick sides. Scarlett does well with her performance but sadly she is very underused through the film.

Sebastian Stan: Winter Soldier is Captain America’s good friend that is being framed through the film, Steve stands by him through the battle making him the one that is causing the friction between the heroes. Sebastian is great in this supporting role being the middle man for the bigger picture.

Support Cast: Captain America: Civil War the biggest cast so far with each character getting their moment in the battle and the story, we also get new characters like Black Panther and Spiderman introduced like they have been part of this universe from the very start.

Director Review: Anthony Russo, Joe RussoAnthony & Joe give us the best movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to date.

 

Action: Captain America: Civil War has brilliant action sequences going on from start to finish as we see the heroes fight each other.

Adventure: Captain America: Civil War puts our heroes on the adventure that will put their alliances to question.

Sci-Fi: Captain America: Civil War throws us into the middle of a sci-fi battle with superheroes.

Superhero: Captain America: Civil War could actually be the best use of superheroes we have seen in the Marvel world.

Settings: Captain America: Civil War uses the settings to make the action happen, but with most of the fighting only being between the heroes we end up in locations where innocent people can’t be hurt.
Special Effects
: Captain America: Civil War has brilliant special effects to make all of the battle sequences look breath taking.

Suggestion: Captain America: Civil War is the Marvel film I think people should be going to watch first now. (Watch)

 

Best Part: Airport battle.

Worst Part: The villain is excellent but we don’t see enough of him.

Action Scene Of The Film: Airport Battle.

Funniest Scene: Airport Battle.

 

Believability: No

Chances of Tears: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: Yes

 

Oscar Chances: Special effects nomination should be heading this films way.

Runtime: 2 Hours 27 Minutes

Tagline: Whose side are you on? 

Trivia: This is the live-action debut of T’Challa, the Black Panther, one of the first African superheroes.

 

Overall: This is the best film from the marvel cinematic universe to date.

Ratingcard

 

 

Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

logoDirector: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo

Writer: Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely (Screenplay) Joe Simon, Jack Kirby (Comic Book)

Starring: Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, Robert Redford, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Cobie Smulders, Frank Grillo, Emily Van Camp

 

Plot: For Steve Rogers, awakening after decades of suspended animation involves more than catching up on pop culture; it also means that this old school idealist must face a world of subtler threats and difficult moral complexities. That comes clear when Director Nick Fury is killed by the mysterious assassin, the Winter Soldier, but not before warning Rogers that SHIELD has been subverted by its enemies. When Rogers acts on Fury’s warning to trust no one there, he is branded as a traitor by the organization. Now a fugitive, Captain America must get to the bottom of this deadly mystery with the help of the Black Widow and his new friend, The Falcon. However, the battle will be costly for the Sentinel of Liberty, with Rogers finding enemies where he least expects them while learning that the Winter Soldier looks disturbingly familiar.

 

Verdict: Marvel Betrayal

 

Story: So we have seen what happened to Tony Stark after the Avengers now it is time to look at Captain America. He has learnt to adapt to the future, but still hasn’t really made any new friends. This story shows how the SHIELD has been compromised and Captain America has become the villain, he must clear his name and find out what has happened and who is responsible. Seems simple really, we have a few personal battles like Captain America and The Winter Soldier true identity. In the end it is a welcome addition to the series and with a post credits scene that really builds to the next chapter but in the end I found this just another average comic book story that is important to the series but not the most memorable. (7/10)

 

Actor Review

 

Chris Evans: Captain America now used to the future but when Nick Fury is killed, he is the only one who can uncover the truth, but he does bring along a couple of familiar faces and a few new faces that are welcome allies. He has to prove who was responsible before he is taken out but SHEILD. Good performance from Evans who is growing into the role as the films come. (9/10)

 captain

Samuel L. Jackson: Nick Fury planning to always be one step ahead at SHIELD he gets blocked out of the system before being target by assassins. Fury would eventually return to Captain America for help before he is killed leading to everything else that happens. Good supporting performance with typical Jackson intensity. (8/10)

fury

Scarlett Johansson: Black Widow the deadly assassin who teams up with Captain to uncover the truth, with her brilliant combat skills she makes a great addition to the team. Good performance showing her kick ass skills. (8/10)

 widow

Robert Redford: Alexander Pierce the head of SHIELD who has been planning his own take over using his connection with HYDRA. He uses his intelligence to get what he wants and push people into supporting him. Good villain performance without using any combats just his brains. (8/10)

 redford

Sebastian Stan: Winter Solider an assassin who is trying to kill Captain America, but he is also a man from his past, Captain tries to talk him around but he is fully programed to kill and complete his mission. Good performance making a villain with conflict. (8/10)

 winter solder

Anthony Mackie: Falcon a soldier with big dreams that bumps into Captain who gives him a chance to prove himself, which he does becoming a trust ally in fights. Good performance in the sidekick role. (8/10)

falcon

Director Review: Anthony Russo, Joe Russo – Good direction to keep the franchise going in the right direction. (8/10)

 

Action: Good action that keeps upping the levels as film continues. (9/10)

Sci-Fi: Good look at a future world that could happen with the wrong people in power. (9/10)

Settings: Good settings used but nothing that can really make the sense different. (7/10)
Special Effects
: Solid special effects used throughout. (9/10)

Suggestion: This one for all the franchise fans and all action fans will enjoy this. (Action Fans Watch)

 

Best Part: Car invasion.

Worst Part: Filler for next part.

Action Scene Of The Film: Final Fight

Funniest Scene: Interrogation scene.

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Yes

Post Credits Scene: Yes

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $713 Million

Budget: $170 Million

Runtime: 2 Hours 16 Minutes

Tagline: In heroes we trust.

 

Overall: Just Another Superhero Film

Rating 72

Thor: The Dark World (2013)

logoDirector: Alan Taylor

Writer: Christopher Yost, Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely (Screenplay) Don Payne, Robert Rodat (Story) Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, Jack Kirby (Comic Book)

Starring: Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston, Anthony Hopkins, Christopher Eccleston, Jaimie Alexander, Zachary Levi, Ray Stevenson, Idris Elba, Kat Dennings

 

Plot: Thor (Hemsworth) returns to Asgard and unites all nine realms earning respect from all realms but his heart is still drawn Jane Foster (Portman) on Earth. An old enemy of Asgard Malekith (Eccleston) leader of the Dark Elves has been waiting for his chance to rise up and conquer and once Jane finds the Aether she becomes possessed, Malekith awakens and heads to Earth. Thor must come back to the rescue and brings along his brother Loki (Hiddleston).

 

Verdict: A smart, funny superhero film

Story: As a story on its own it will be very hard to pick up and watch and really understand what is going on. (6/10) As part of the franchise this is brilliant story that offers some much need reunion between Thor and Jane. It also gives us a conclusion to Loki story but leaving enough doors open for a Thor sequel as well as an events to return for the Avengers. (9/10)

 

Actor Review: Chris Hemsworth – Thor goes against orders to save the day much like the first Thor. Chris was made for this role and continues to do a great job in the role. Star Performance Award, Iconic Performance Award, Action Star Award (9/10)

 thor

Actor Review: Natalie Portman – Jane Foster the human love interest that’s curiosity gets the better of her. I feel like this role could go to a more unknown actress as someone of Natalie calibre needs to be in a more dominate screen role. (6/10)

jane

Actor Review: Tom Hiddleston – Loki the scene steals of the Avengers but locked up due to events in that film. Helps Thor escape to stop Malekith. Tom has made a real name for himself in this film and with the role he continues to be the star of the show. Scene Stealer Award, Favourite Character Award (9/10)

 loki

Actor Review: Christopher Eccleston – Malekith the leader of the Dark Elves who want to take control of all realms. Good villain role from a very capable actor. (8/10)

 malekith

Director Review: Alan Taylor – The first steps into movies and he does an excellent job fitting into the world created by previous directors. (9/10)

 

 

Action: The action scenes are very ambitious and stand out. (9/10)

Adventure: The adventure side of the film is good. (8/10)

Fantasy: With the creations of Asgard we get a brilliant fantasy world. (10/10)

Special Effects: Brilliant special effects all round. (10/10)

Believability: No but what comic book it? (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Settings: The setting put together brilliantly be it Asgard, The Dark World or London. (9/10)

Suggestion: I personally enjoyed this film and would recommend this to people, but I do feel that you will need to have seen Thor and Avengers to understand some of the jokes and reasons certain things have happened. (Superhero Fans Watch)

 

Best Part: Asgard invasion

Worst Part: Too many inside jokes about previous films.

Action Scene Of The Film: Asgard invasion

Funniest Scene: Any scene with Darcy (Kat Dennings) in

Oscar Chances: No

Chances of Sequel: Yes being it stand alone or next Avengers

Similar Too: Thor

 

Overall: Super, Superhero Action Film

Rating 88