Movies are awesome

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andersonh1
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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by andersonh1 »

ZS Justice League - Watched disc 2 and finished the movie. Overall it's a vast improvement on the theatrical release. I like the callbacks to Man of Steel with Superman taking flight, and the voiceovers from Jonathan and Jor-El. The Flash having to either reverse time or run back in time to undo events where the League lost is one of the highlights of this version, and Darkseid comes across as well-realized and threatening. I'd rather have seen Superman back in the blue and red instead of the black and silver suit though. Steppenwolf's death is pretty brutal, and as much violence as he's inflicted on others, I still felt a bit sorry for him in the end, though watching Superman pummel him into submission with ease after the rest of the team combined had struggled to combat him was great. The sequel hooks are interesting, and it's a shame we'll likely never see any of the ideas play out. Not that I want to see corrupted Superman, but a Justice League movie where they combat Darkseid's invasion wouldn't be bad. All in all the story is suitably large and gives all the characters more to do, and my main complaint is the same as it is with all these Zack Synder films: superheroes more than willing to kill. Circumstances might arguably justify some of it, but it still goes against my preferences.

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andersonh1
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Re: Movies are awesome

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The Amazing Spider Man - I finally watched the first Andrew Garfield movie. It's very moody and slow, and set at night for a lot of it, all of which feel like the wrong choice for a Spider Man movie. Andrew Garfield is very good, and so is Emma Stone, and all the cast really. Garfield really plays up the socially awkward side of the character, though he comes to life when he's masked up and throwing quips at the bad guys. The Lizard is pretty well realized as a CGI character, at least watching on tv (no idea how he'd look on the big screen) and Connors seems fairly true to those old Lizard stories in the first Spider-Man omnibus as a basically good man who undergoes a personality change when he tries to regrow his lost arm. What's going on with Peter's parents though? There is a story in the second omnibus where they were revealed to have been agents of SHIELD or something, so maybe this is riffing off of that idea.

Not a bad movie, could have been better. Nowhere near as good as the Tobey Maguire films. Definitely makes me appreciate Garfield's Spider Man more in No Way Home. I got the 2-disc set that has both his movies, so on to the second one.

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Sparky Prime
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Re: Movies are awesome

Post by Sparky Prime »

andersonh1 wrote:
Sun Apr 24, 2022 11:09 am
What's going on with Peter's parents though? There is a story in the second omnibus where they were revealed to have been agents of SHIELD or something, so maybe this is riffing off of that idea.
The sequel would go on to expand on them somewhat. They're based more on the Ultimate Universe versions of the characters (if you ignore the contradictions from Ultimate Origins)...
Spoiler
In a nutshell, they're scientists who found out their research was going to be used for no good, and when they try to do something about it, they are killed when their plane crashes.

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Sparky Prime
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Re: Movies are awesome

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Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
Overall, while I felt there were a few things they could have done better, I really enjoyed this film. I managed to avoid most of the spoilers going into it, so there were some nice surprises.
Spoiler
America Chavez is on the run from someone who wants to take her powers which allows her to open portals to other universes and ends up in the MCU universe. Dr. Strange and Wong save her but she's a little hesitant to trust them given the previous Dr. Strange she met tried to take her powers when he thought they were out of options. Strange and Wong realize the demons had runes on them, suggesting a witch was controlling them, so Dr. Strange goes to Wanda for help... Only to find out she's the one behind it.

Little surprised they made Wanda the villain of this story, since they had left Wandavision off with her on the path of redemption. The events of Wandavision are largely glossed over here. Wanda says she'd been expecting Strange to come talk about what happened in Westview, but Strange says she did the right thing in the end, and that's all he cares about. But despite having come to terms with letting that life go, Wanda has since become obsessed with being reunited with her children. I assume this is the result of the Darkhold's effect on her, but again, the movie doesn't really go into it.

Also a little disappointed they don't really give us much on America. We learn when she was younger, she got scared when a bee landed on her, accidentally causing her to send her mothers to some random universe, with her being sent to another. She's obviously spent many years traveling around the multiverse surviving on her own, being unable to control her powers which activate whenever she's scared enough. Most of her history is largely glossed over. We also find out she's looked for variants of herself, but never found any, and doesn't dream, suggesting there is only one of her throughout the multiverse. But again, the implications of this is quickly brushed to the side and not really explored.

Strange and America end up getting sent to another universe where Strange meets the Illuminati, a group of heroes made up by Captain Carter (just like she appeared in What-if), Captain Marvel (Maria Rambeau rather than Carol Danvers), Black Bolt (Anson Mount reprising the role), Mordo (replacing their own version of Dr. Strange as the Supreme Sorcerer), Reed Richards (played by John Krasinski) and of course Professor X (Patrick Stewart once again reprising the role). This was one of the highlights of the film for me. It was great to see the first appearances of some of these characters in the MCU. It is interesting that they included Black Bolt. I'd thought they'd completely forgotten about the Inhumans, since the original plans for them didn't work out, resulting is a fairly lackluster tv mini-series. Makes me wonder if they've got plans to revisit them. Unfortunately, the Illuminati don't last for very long because they completely underestimate Wanda, and believed Dr. Strange to be the true threat.

One thing I wish they'd explained... Dr. Strange is still wearing the Eye of Agamotto, even though it no longer houses the Time Infinity Stone. He opens it at one point when they have to get through a door another version of him had locked, so it obviously has some mystic abilities without the stone... I'd assume it's more like the comic book version now, where it can see through disguises and illusions as well as see recent past events. But it isn't clear what it did here. This would have been the perfect opportunity to explain it, but... oh well.

Dr. Strange ends up needing to use the Darkhold after Wanda captures America. In the ensuing battle, Wong tells Strange their only option is to take America's powers, but Strange goes with another option. This is somewhat of a theme for Strange throughout the movie. Early on in the film, he'd been asked if he did the right thing in handling the outcome of the blip, and he's struggling with having cut himself off from having a relationship with Dr. Palmer, who says he always had to be the one holding the knife. So he gives up his control over the situation by telling America she can control her powers by confronting her fears. America sends Wanda to the reality with her children, who are scared to see this version of their mother. America brings Wanda back and realizing her mistakes, destroys the Darkhold in every universe, apparently sacrificing herself in the process.

In the end, America begins training in the mystic arts, and we see Strange gain a third eye, the toll using the Darkhold had for him. Although we really aren't given any explanation for what this means for him going forward. In the comics, the Eye of Agamotto will often manifest itself as a third eye on his forehead, but this is clearly something different... At any rate, mid-credits, Strange is recruited by Charlize Theron (dunno who her character is) to stop an incursion in another universe he inadvertently caused.

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Re: Movies are awesome

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Sonic the Hedgehog
Spoiler
Sonic ends up hiding on Earth to protect him from those that would misuse his power. But after 10 years living on his own watching people from a distance, his loneliness eventually gets to him and he accidentally creates an EMP. The military (fun fact one of the generals is played by Gary Chalk), believing it may have been some sort of attack, send Dr. Robotnik to investigate, despite not having a high opinion of him. Sonic attempts to leave Earth via his warp rings, but is knocked out by the local sheriff and looses the rings. Robotnik quickly discovers a quill from Sonic and the Hedgehog himself forcing the sheriff to help Sonic recover his warp rings. In the process, they become friends and join forces to defeat Robotnik by sending him to a mushroom planet.

Mid-credits, Robotnik is shown alive and well on the mushroom planet, still in possession of Sonic's quill he used to power his Eggmobile, swearing he'll get back at Sonic. And Tails arrives on Earth to warn Sonic about something...
It's a good thing that they redesigned Sonic from the initial design they showed in the first trailer, because that 'more realistic' design would have been super distracting. Jim Carry, while he portrays Robotnik very differently from the games, I really liked what he did in the role. Being a character from our own Earth, it makes sense. And there is hints of him evolving to become more like the video game version. Overall, it's a good movie, especially as far as video game adaptations go.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2
Spoiler
Robotnik uses Sonic's quill and what's left of his equipment to send a signal and see who shows up, and ends up meeting Knuckles. Together they travel to Earth to confront Sonic. Knuckles believes Sonic knows where the Master Emerald is hidden, having been in the care of the owl Longclaw, that his tribe attacked in the previous movie (apparently Longclaw and all the echidnas were killed). Sonic escapes thanks to Tails, and Robotnik, intrigued by Knuckle's mention of the Master Emerald, agree to continue working together. Eventually, they track down the Master Emerald, where Robotnik betrays Knuckles and steals it for himself. Returning to Green Hills, he's confronted by G.U.N. and creates a massive robot similar to the Death Egg robot boss at the end of the second game. Sonic, Tails and Knuckles team up and manage to knock the Master Emerald out of Robotnik. When Sonic recovers it, it breaks into the Chaos Emeralds. Sonic becomes Super Sonic and quickly defeats Robotnik, who disappears following the fight. Knuckles reforms the Master Emerald and, along with Tails and Sonic, agree safeguard it, settling back into life with the Wachowskis.

Mid-credits, G.U.N is cleaning up the wreckage of the Death Egg robot, finding no trace of the Eggman himself (although his henchman is seen alive and well disguised as a G.U.N agent to escape), when one of the agents reports they found a 50 year old file while scrubbing Robotnik's existence from their systems... The file contains coordinates to Project: Shadow.
This time around, Sonic's human pals get largely sidelined. They still play a role in helping Sonic, but it's much more reduced than it was in the first film now that Tails and Knuckles have been introduced. Honestly, I think they could have even cut out a couple scenes with them in Hawaii because they weren't really all that necessary. Eggman I was a little disappointed they didn't do a more with him in this film in terms of making him more like his video game counterpart. He basically just gets keeps the new mustache that we saw in the post credits of the first film. Although Jim Carry still does a great job in the role. Also disappointed that the Master Emerald is just a fusion of the Chaos Emeralds. I guess it sort of simplifies the connection between the Master and Chaos Emeralds by making them one in the same... But, I dunno, I feel like it looses something. I didn't feel this movie was quite as composed as the first. It felt like they tried to do a little too much in this one. It was still a good movie though.

Little odd to me that Colleen O'Shaughnessey, the voice actress for Tails, is the only person they got from the video games to reprise the role in these movies.

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Re: Movies are awesome

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Sonic was an ok kids movie, I think the redesign was smart but the art wasn't really up to the level they were trying to convey, it felt too cartoony in its lack of detail. The story was fine, James Marsden really carries this film and works well with the cast, Jim Carrey was just doing his standard schtick and it felt dialed up too high.

Chip n Dale's Rescue Rangers, on the other hand, was terrible. It was cheap, it wasn't funny, it wasn't a good story, it wasn't well done, and it somehow felt obvious which is odd for a movie about cartoons. It really thought it was the next Who Framed Roger Rabbit but without the writing, without the energy, without the technique and skill, it can't reach anything approaching those heights.

Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore is also supposed to be a family franchise, right? This movie is terrible, it's such a mess, everything's up its own ass in the story, everything's incredibly important and complex and nonsensical, all this political maneuvering sucks the magic out of the story. Everything's miserable and a drag.

Onward, another family film, jeez I didn't realize how much stuff hitting streaming was in this realm for me, this was Pixar on autopilot wasting their setting on a Monsters Inc knockoff and their premise on rote storytelling, their casting wasted on uninspiring leads with no charisma together.

Ghostbusters Afterlife, technically another family film, is such an odd entry because it's a comedy that's not funny, an adventure that doesn't really do anything, it has no real action aside from one scene in the middle, it's a toothless indie drama and a forgettable nostalgia-fest that has nothing to say.

Death on the Nile, finally not a family film, is better than I expected, Gal Gadot really cannot act at all though, but the rest of the cast is good and you can feel there's ideas on how to make a modern film of a century-old story. Despite the shoehorned origin story for Hercule Poirot being godawful, I actually enjoyed this.

Spider-Man No Way Home got away with murder, it made me like Andrew Garfield as Spider-Man, it made its overly-long length feel reasonable aside from one too many endings, I enjoyed it despite a few notable flaws.

Hitman's Wife's Bodyguard was a big step down from the original, it felt like they couldn't get the stars together for more than a day or two, so there's a lot of scenes with characters knocked out or otherwise removed. The Ryan Reynolds character gets written so much more silly that it loses any sense of grounding it had in the first.

Red Notice, this movie was so bad, there's nothing here at all, it's just the 3 stars turning in B-level work or worse, then a lot of CGI and almost no other characters, this was incomprehensibly bad.

The Batman was 3 hours I wish I could get back, it was terribly written and conceived. Pattinson's Bruce Wayne isn't so much a character as a moody nothing that just punches and stares broodingly through the whole film as a character arc. It's an ugly film in a way that has no ideas, so it's just ugly trying to copy comic book ideas. It's dumb in ways that are astonishing. Batman as a detective is a joke, he misses an incredibly obvious piece of evidence that could have solved the whole thing in the first 20 minutes, he lets others do all the detecting just so they can report answers to him, and he never gets ahead of the villain in any way. Speaking of which, Paul Dano's Riddler is such a bad idea. There's a medium-big action ending that's really grotesque and hateful and ill-conceived. And the more I think about this film, the more I think the 5/10 I gave it was too generous.
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Re: Movies are awesome

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The trailer for Black Adam is out. I'm more interested in Dr. Fate and Hawkman than the main character himself, but overall it looks interesting, and I'll be curious to see how they handle what is essentially a villain-led movie. Will Black Adam's connection to Captain Marvel be mentioned?

DC takes way too long to release these movies. They need to adopt a model like Marvel Studios and put these out a couple a year, because they cast someone good as a character, and then it's years before a sequel is made, meaning the actors are going to age out of a part rather quickly in the big gap between films. But maybe they don't care, they're just making movies and don't care if they tie together or not.

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Re: Movies are awesome

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andersonh1 wrote:
Thu Jun 09, 2022 5:23 am
But maybe they don't care, they're just making movies and don't care if they tie together or not.
I think this is the case.
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Re: Movies are awesome

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Chip and Dale's Rescue Rangers: I liked this. It was fun and funny and the took shots at a lot of stuff that you wouldn't think they'd be able to. A few examples: Ugly Sonic (before they redesigned him) is a character in this movie. Blaster is seen in an audience shot. Roger Rabbit makes a cameo. It's a ridiculous fun comedy, I would recommend watching it when you can visually pay attention to it as I'm sure there were plenty of things I missed since I was doing a project for work at the time. My only... complaint? I guess? Is that it feels a little heavy handed to have an anti piracy/bootlegging message coming from DISNEY of all places. Almost as if the house of mouse is saying "don't steal our stuff". You know what, Disney? Your lawyers are already too overzealous for their own good (look up what happened to Gargoyles sometime), so you can take that message and shove it. Other than that, I enjoyed it.

Top Gun: Maverick: I REALLY enjoyed this movie. Like better than the original enjoyed it. It had more action, more heart, a great soundtrack, and... yeah, this is as good as a sequel to Top Gun could have been. They nailed it out of the park on this one. Go see this movie!!

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Re: Movies are awesome

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andersonh1 wrote:
Thu Jun 09, 2022 5:23 am
DC takes way too long to release these movies. They need to adopt a model like Marvel Studios and put these out a couple a year, because they cast someone good as a character, and then it's years before a sequel is made, meaning the actors are going to age out of a part rather quickly in the big gap between films. But maybe they don't care, they're just making movies and don't care if they tie together or not.
These films keep underperforming, they're dumping tons of resources into them and then realizing the end products aren't what the execs expected - mainly because the execs are clowns who don't understand what they're hearing when they greenlight pitches, I suspect - and there's no singular controlling hand at WB's DC. WW was a hit, WW84 was a bad joke. Aquaman and Shazam had lighter tones away from Zack Snyder's control and were hits, but the social medias keep telling them to make exclusively grimdark everything. The studio butchered the dubious-quality original Suicide Squad, so they found a powerfully singular voice in James Gunn to make a sequel and it got COVID'd into the grave. Your solo Batman movie decisions piss off its original star/writer/director so you throw everything about that film out and start with a fresh take that disconnects from your cinematic universe, it's got decent heat but can't sell a toy to save its life and performs weak with audience scores, its box office does only good not great money despite soft competition. You lose 3 directors on your Flash spinoff movie, finally will it into existence then the star goes so off the deep end that you're confident you can't use him on the film's promotional tour and there's even talk of not releasing the film as it stands.

If you're a studio exec, you don't want to speed things up until they're firing on more cylinders, and they definitely are not doing so right now; they need to slow things down and figure out where the voice is, who is going to keep it all in check, and how they can execute it efficiently, and they have to do so during the biggest shakeup their company's suffered in 50 years.
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