The Rocketeer (1991)

Director: Joe Johnston

Writer: Danny Bilson, Paul De Meo, William Dear (Screenplay) Dave Stevens (Graphic Novel)

Starring: Billy Campbell, Jennifer Connelly, Alan Arkin, Timothy Dalton, Paul Sorvino, Terry O’Quinn, Ed Lauter, James Handy

 

Plot: A young pilot stumbles onto a prototype jetpack that allows him to become a high flying masked hero.


Tagline – Three years before the United States declares war, Cliff Secord leads America’s first battle against the Nazis.

Runtime: 1 Hour 48 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Fun Adventure Film

 

Story: The Rocketeer starts in 1938 as young pilot Cliff (Campbell) and his engineer Peevy (Arkin) find a mysterious jetpack in one of their planes after a group of mobsters crash in their airstrip. Neville Sinclair (Dalton) wants the rocket and has Eddie Valentine (Sorvino) and his men try to retrieve it.

With Neville turning out to be one of the biggest stars in an emerging Hollywood, Cliff’s girlfriend Jenny (Connelly) has a part in his latest movie, which brings him to the attention of Neville and his goons, once he uses the jetpack to save a friend.

 

Thoughts on The Rocketeer

 

Characters – Cliff is a quiet, shy and clumsy pilot, well clumsy on land, he has a blossoming romance with aspiring actress, he is always trying to prove he is the best in the sky and when he gets his hands on a jetpack he becomes the Rocketeer. Jenny is the aspiring actress that has only been getting small roles and only wishes Cliff would support her dreams more. Peevy is the engineer that can fix anything for Cliff, he watches him risk his life and knows he can handle himself. Neville Sinclair is a big-name actor in Hollywood, he wants to get his hands on the jetpack and will use his goons to get his hands on it.

PerformancesBilly Campbell is good in this leading role, you can see the innocent reactions in his eyes. Jennifer Connelly is good even if she is just mainly the damsel to Cliff’s character. Alan Arkin does get to have fun in his role, while Timothy Dalton works well as the primary villain in the film.

StoryThe story here follows a young man that suddenly gets the equipment to make him superhuman with the addition of the jetpack, though the mob are also after the jetpack and he must protect his friends from his secret. This is adapted from a graphic novel and you can see this as it is mostly an origin story about how Cliff became the Rocketeer. When it comes to the villains we get cliched mob figures throughout which is fine, but soon becomes tiresome with their reactions to everything going on. This is however a fun story that can be enjoyed throughout.

Action/Adventure/Sci-FiThe action in the film is a lot of fun because it is wildly over the top and fits the comic book ideas we are now used too. The adventure takes Cliff from a small time role of a pilot to one of the most wanted men in Hollywood and not for the good reasons. The sci-fi elements from the film come from the inclusion of the jetpack and how it comes from the mind of Howard Hughes.

SettingsThe film is set in Hollywood where we have the rise of mobsters in the corrupt on the early stages of Hollywood are shown through the use of the settings.

Special EffectsThe effects in the film are good for the most part, the flying sequences are a step forward from the old school Superman films and have dated when it comes to modern film stylings.


Scene of the Movie –
First time with the Rocket.

That Moment That Annoyed Me The mobsters feel too cliched.

Final ThoughtsThis is a nice fun film that can be enjoyed, it has dated in places but for a time when comic book movies didn’t come along that often this shows you can make them fun without them being connected.

 

Overall: Fun from start to finish.

Rating

 

 

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Edward Norton Weekend – Primal Fear (1996)

Director: Gregory Hobilt

Writer: Steve Shagan, Ann Biderman (Screenplay) William Diehl (Novel)

Starring: Richard Gere, Laura Linney, John Mahoney, Alfre Woodard, Frances McDormand, Edward Norton, Terry O’Quinn, Andre Braugher

 

Plot: An altar boy is accused of murdering a priest, and the truth is buried several layers deep.


Tagline – Sooner or later a man who wears two faces forgets which one is real.

Runtime: 2 Hours 9 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Brilliant Thriller

 

Story: Primal Fear starts when the Archbishop is murdered, all clues point to bloody covered Aaron (Norton) as the murderer, he shy stuttering alter boy. When former district prosecutor Martin Vail (Gere) turned defence lawyer sees this as a spotlight for his new career direction and going against former colleague Janet (Linney) and her boss the district attorney Shaughnessy (Mahoney) the case goes to trial.

When Martin learns that Aaron has a split personality disorder with a much more aggressive Roy doing the dirty work for Aaron and the bigger picture of the motivation behind the murder comes to light.

 

Thoughts on Primal Fear

 

Characters – Martin Vail is the lawyer, he once was one of the biggest prosecutors in the city but has turned his back on that career to become a defence lawyer. He sees this case as the one that will give him his big break as a defence lawyer doing this case for free. He has a strong trusted team, he is made out to be a womaniser, though we never see him hit on anyone, only that he once had a fling with Janet in the past. Janet is the prosecutor that is taking the case, she is the one taking over Martin’s role and with a previous relationship with him. She knows this will be a career maker for her and is enjoying going head to head with her former mentor. Shaughnessy is the District Attorney that wants the death penalty and will not let Janet forget this. Aaron is the shy alter boy that is accused of murder but with him being found covered in blood even if you can’t see him doing this murder, Roy is the aggressive personality next to Aaron that knows the truth and seems to be the release of everything Aaron holds in. Shoat is the judge trying to control the case in what lawyers are trying to pull for their wins. Molly is psychologist that is studying Aaron trying to figure out what his mindset learning about Roy.

PerformancesRichard Gere is fantastic in the leading role, you see here how he shows the desperate he is to win this case. Laura Linney is strong in her role which must go against Richard Gere. Edward Norton gives one of the best debut roles of any actor in the history of film, he is disturbed when needed and calm when Aaron and crazed when Roy. The supporting cast are great too without taking the spotlight of the rest of the cast.

StoryThe story follows the trial of a disturbed young man accused of murdering an archbishop. While the court case unfolds like you would expect with twists coming from every corner and evidence coming to light through nearly every witness. As a fan of courtroom dramas this plays into everything I enjoy and I love watching crimes get solved in a courtroom. The story is very well paced and even being over 2 hours long doesn’t feel like you are giving the film this much time.

Crime/MysteryThe crime focuses on the murder and what gave the killer motivation, the mystery plays into the motivation too and just how the shy timid altar boy could have committed the murder.

SettingsThe film uses the courtroom for most of the scenes, we have the location involved in the crime too which shows how the lawyers are operating on both sides of the case.


Scene of the Movie –
The final twist.

That Moment That Annoyed Me I would say the side case Martin worked on being touched on through the main case gets slightly annoying.

Final ThoughtsThis is one of the best courtroom dramas of all time, with a crime which does balance the line between what would be considered a bigger crime and performances that could be considered the career best for members of the cast.

 

Overall: Courtroom delight.

Rating

 

 

Halloween Kingathon – Silver Bullet (1985)

Banner-3logoDirector: Daniel Attias

Writer: Stephen King (Screenplay) Stephen King (Novel)

Starring: Gary Busey, Everett McGill, Corey Haim, Megan Follows, Robin Groves, Leon Russom, Terry O’Quinn

Plot: A werewolf terrorizes a small city where lives Marty Coslaw, – a paralytic boy – his uncle and his sister – the narrator of the story.

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

Verdict: Forgotten Werewolf Film

Story: Silver Bullet starts in a small town with narration explaining that we are going to learn about their long nightmare which started on a full moon. Tarker’ Mill is the small town in question where our Jane Coslaw (Follows) live with her family as well a narrates the story. Jane lives with her little handicapped brother Marty (Haim) and there parents Nan (Groves) and Bob (Russom), Jane and Marty have your typical sibling rivalry that is really pushing Jane’s patiences.

The town is under attacked from a werewolf but the residents are still trying to figure out what is going on. Marty looks up to his estranged drunk Uncle Red (Busey) who has been causing problems for years. When the body count continues to grow Marty teams up with sister Jane, Uncle Red and his new wheel chair the Silver Bullet to stop the werewolf terrorizing the town.

Silver Bullet brings us into a classic werewolf tale but most importantly it enters into the idea of the town really not knowing what it is attacking people while we did. I liked how the film flowed with our leading character Marty learning the truth rather than it being a complete battle from start to finish, I also like how it was investigating who the werewolf was as many films don’t touch that subject. I think this is one of the better forgotten werewolf films. (7/10)

Actor Review

Gary Busey: Uncle Red is considered a drunk by his family but is always looked up to by his nephew Marty. When the people of the town start getting picked off he works with Marty to figure out what is going on along with the newly created Silver Bullet. Gary gives a good performance in a role I don’t think many other people could have play this well. (7/10)

Everett McGill: Reverend Lowe is the prim suspect in the werewolf case and ends up involved in a cat and mouse like style against Mary. Everett makes for a good villain creepy throughout. (7/10)

Corey Haim: Marty Coslaw is the handicapped boy who starts questioning what is going on in his town while everyone else is involved in a witch hunt Marty starts investigating the idea of a creature being responsible. Corey does a good job as the determined young boy in a different look for a leading role. (7/10)

Megan Follows: Jane Coslaw is our narrator who is recounting her story about what happened where she has to suffer dealing with her young brother who never gets blamed for anything. She does end up helping her brother investigate who the werewolf was. Megan does a solid job in this role. (6/10)

Support Cast: Silver Bullet has a typical supporting cast with the highlight being the Sheriff played by Terry O’Quinn from Lost fame.

Director Review: Daniel Attias – Daniel gives us a good werewolf film that could be in the league with the very best. (7/10)

Horror: Silver Bullet brings us a good horror element film with the added werewolf story. (8/10)

Mystery: Silver Bullet gives the town the mystery of what is going on while giving us the mystery of who is the werewolf. (8/10)

Thriller: Silver Bullet keeps us guessing on how it will end and has a couple of very suspense filled scene. (8/10)

Settings: Silver Bullet keeps the setting in a small town showing just how close the community is when they have to fight back. (9/10)
Special Effects: Silver Bullet has good special effects for the time showing that transformation scenes are important in the genre. (9/10)

Suggestion: Silver Bullet is one to watch, I think a lot of people might have missed this and could enjoy this. (Watch)

Best Part: The chase scene.

Worst Part: Showing the werewolf too early to the audience.

Action Scene Of The Film: Silver Bullet versus the car.

Believability: No (0/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: No

Post Credits Scene: No

Oscar Chances: No

Budget: $7 Million

Runtime: 1 Hour 35 Minutes

Tagline:  Part human. Part wolf. Total terror.

Overall: Good Werewolf film that many will have missed.

Rating 70

The X-Files (1998)

logoDirector: Rob Bowman

Writer: Chris Carter (Screenplay) Chris Carter, Frank Spotnitz (Story)

Starring: David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, John Neville, William B. Davis, Martin Landau, Mitch Pileggi, Jeffrey DeMunn, Blythe Danner, Terry O’Quinn

 

Plot: With problems appearing between FBI agents Fox Mulder (Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Anderson), a dangerous conspiracy is starting to appear. A deadly virus, which appears to be of extra-terrestrial origin has appeared, which could destroy all life on Earth. With the help of a paranoid doctor Alvin Kurtzweil (Landau) Mulder and Scully must act fast in order to save everyone on the planet.

 

Verdict: The Conspiracy continues.

 

Story: In what feels like a bonus extra-long episode of the show you be believed that nothing has changed. They do get closer to the truth than they have got before but this could easily be just another season finale. If you watched the show you know what is coming and how they get there so don’t expect a new challenging story. (8/10)

 

Actor Reviews

 

David Duchovny: Mulder always believing in something out there and constantly get Scully involved even when she doesn’t believe him. Good performance as the conspiracy crazy FBI agent. (8/10)

 mulder

Gillian Anderson: Scully after trying to move on with her career she ends up getting pulled back into the hunt for the truth. Good performance but much like David it is nothing more than we get off the TV show. (8/10)

scully

Director Review: Rob Bowman – Creates an enjoyable film that keeps you interested from start to finish. (7/10)

 

Mystery: The show always created mystery this continues it. (8/10)

Sci-Fi: Uses its sci-fi elements very well. (9/10)

Thriller: Not quite edge of the seat but keeps your attention. (7/10)

Settings: Uses some isolated location to add to the conspiracy of what is going on in the places people don’t go to. (7/10)
Special Effects
: Good use of special effects throughout. (8/10)

Suggestion: It would be fair to say this is only one for the actual fans of the show, certain things wouldn’t add up completely if you haven’t. (Fans Watch)

 

Best Part: The bee defence system is good.

Worst Part: Not needed film if show was still going on.

Action Scene Of The Film: Final scene

Believability: Depends what you want to believe. (5/10)

Chances of Tears: No (0/10)

Chances of Sequel: Yes has one.

Post Credits Scene: No

 

Oscar Chances: No

Box Office: $189,176,423

Budget: $66million

Runtime: 2 Hours 1 Minute

Tagline: Discover the past, live the present, fight the future.

Trivia:Chris Carter wanted 5 season show then films, but Fox made him write the film to fill in the gaps between season 5 and 6.

 

Overall: The Truth Continues to Alluded Mulder

Rating 71