Archive for the ‘Movie’ Category

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

As the saying goes, better late than never. I was glad to be able to get the chance to watch this movie. I guess you can consider me a Star Wars fan but not to the extreme (otherwise I would have watched this on the very first day of showing). I viewed it more on the performance of the characters and the storyline/plot.

I was pretty impressed on this movie. It’s a good comeback for the Star Wars franchise. Admittedly, I did not go back to the previous installment, The Return of the Jedi, but nevertheless, you somehow get the connection and it was not difficult to recall.


I am particularly amazed with Daisy Ridley who played Rey. She was the combination of strength and grace, and her acting is superb. I would watch out for her in future films. I also adored BB-8. For a robot, it’s very relatable and cute performance. It’s like a ball of fun. I just want to have him with me all the time (ok time to get back to reality). I also commend actor Oscar Isaac who played Poe Dameron and Adam Driver who played Kylo Ren. Isaac took command of his role and he was believable. Driver also for the antagonist, he was effective and just evil (which is good for his role). And of course, who can deny Harrison Ford and Carrie Fisher who played Hans Solo and Princess Leia, respectively. it made the movie more enticing and I guess more sincere to where they left off the last installment. I just wished there was more humor between the two like before but them again, they have matured very much, literally. I also like the comeback of C-3PO, R2-D2, and Chewbacca. It was very refreshing and brings a smile to my face like a long time reunion. And one more thing, I am particularly surprised to see Greg Grunberg who played Snap Wexley. It was nice to see him in film again, even if it was only a minor role.

A few meh moments for me was John Boyega who played Finn. The performance was just weak and I find him cowardly and there was no defining moment for him. Though he tried to fight Kylo Ren using a lightsaber but it was expected that he would loose as he has no knowledge on how to use it. This gave Ridley a more shining moment as she saved him and somehow partially defeating Kylo Ren. I was expecting more from Boyega. Another one was Lupita Nyong’o who played Maz Kanata. The role was a masked soldier and only the voice was evident plus the role was somehow insignificant and forgettable. As a role, this was a tad bit shallow. And lastly, Mark Hamill who played Luke Skywalker, played a very short role plus it was never a build up when Ridley would meet up with him in the end. It was obvious there was no climax/build-up to this scene. I guess they had to do this in preparation for the next instalment but it’s just too short and too expected – no thrill. 

Well, it seems that the Star Wars saga continues and I wonder when and how will this all end. I just hope they build this up after this chapter and not freaking loose the appeal. Nevertheless, this was a far better installment prior to A New Hope chapter.

4/5 Stars rating

Creed: It’s All about the Legacy

First and foremost, I am not a boxing fan but when I was growing up, I was exposed to some movies that focuses on boxing like the Rocky franchise. I was not keen on understanding the boxing aspects but more of the acting and how entertaining it could be to a certain extent.

Then last month, I came across some promotion of an upcoming movie titled “Creed”. It’s another one of those boxing movies so you kind of imagine how enthusiastic I was (sarcastic remark). But then it featured an actor named Michael B. Jordan. I knew him only from the Fantastic 4, a movie catastrophe. Jordan played Johnny Storm as the Human Torch. Though the movie flopped big time, he did catch my attention because it did not really give him the opportunity to shine as an actor, more so as Human Torch. So when I was watching the preview, it did spark an interest to try and watch the movie when it opened.


The verdict? I was blown away with the movie. Though I knew Sylvester Stallone was in the movie, I thought of him just an actor, acting as a coach for Jordan. But NO!!! This movie is actually a continuity from the Rocky franchise. Jordan played as Adonis Johnson, the illegitimate son of Apollo Johnson. Stallone was Rocky as a retired boxer and now owns an Italian restaurant. Was the “Italian” restaurant a surprise? Not at all. And Stallone was helping Jordan become the best boxer that he could be.

The acting was great, the cast was awesome, and the plot was amazing. I really couldn’t find any fault or “it could have been better” scenarios. I actually enjoyed the movie, both the boxing action and the story itself. Jordan did redeem himself in the movie as a real actor. I was convinced that he was a boxer. But the most surprising moment for me was the way Stallone acted. He was believable and adorable. I have a sense of appreciation on his role because it’s more raw and vulnerable in the movie. I felt the acting of Jordan and Stallone were neither overly or underly done. It was just perfectly right. I also appreciate the little humor every now and then which released a bit of the tension of the movie/plot.

I also have to make mention one of the fantastic scene in the movie or at least for me. It’s the first official fight of Adonis as a boxer. If you will take note, it was a one-take scene. The camera was just moving circular around the ring while they fought. There were no cuts in the scene so the way it was choreographed was impressive.

This is one movie that the action is as equal as the emotion that unravel within the story which makes a great worthwhile movie therefore I highly recommend this. There are other interesting twists and turns (especially on the legacy aspect) in the movie and I prefer not shredding them all here so you could find the time to watch this movie. But rest assured, you will not be disappointed.

5/5 Stars rating

World Invasion: Battle Los Angeles

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When I started watching World Invasion: Battle Los Angeles (Sony Pictures) in DVD, it is so similar to the Independence Day movie in 1996. One good thing about this movie is it tackled mostly the human factor and emotion during an alien invasion. Comparing it to Independence Day, which is more extreme heroism with a mix of cynicism due to the comedic and sarcastic approach. Battle Los Angeles seems to be more toned down with its heroic acts, which makes it more real and believable.

The storyline became more real as it never was a perfect plan but a series of trial and errors, and in each attempt they do it caused lives, which again is very relatable, and instead of criticizing them, the tendency is to understand the rationality why it had to happen.

I have no specific comment on the actors, which is a good thing because I believed them in their role and character. The scene when William Martinez (Ramon Rodriguez) died I was in a way relieved because it goes to show what experience does matter in this sort of situations and they way he died was indeed heroic in his own way. Aaron Eckhart was perfect for the role of a mature, retiring Marie Staff Sergeant, Michael Nantz. And of course I must make special mention of Michelle Rodriguez as Elena Santos. I guess she could be type casted for war movies, not that it’s a bad thing but she’s very good at it – the female machismo.

Somewhere in the middle of the film, you tend to wonder when will this end because of the action and battle scenes were just never-ending but it goes to show that once you accept and appreciate the movie, it does take you on the journey.

I particularly like the ending because it makes you use your imagination that the war is not over and the teamwork of the rest of the platoon would persevere and determined to defeat the aliens. It didn’t leave an impression of heroism on the platoon but it’s just the way they were disciplined in their training. Probably a lesson we could all learn in our daily lives.

Here After

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Clint Eastwood, the director of the movie, has done it again. Here After (Warner Bros.) is a beautiful masterpiece and a witty way of merging the trilogies, having a single plot of dealing with afterlife experiences not to mention that relationship each have with the other.

I am not one bit surprised with Matt Damon’s role as George. One thing that is refreshing is that he doesn’t have any action scenes unlike his past and more popular movies. This way you tend to appreciate the raw talent focusing on actions and reactions to things and situation.

Other cast members also were exceptional. The short role of Bryce Dallas Howard was also mind-blowing especially the scene where George was forced to tell the past of Melanie and despite the warnings, she still insisted that resulted in a one-take tear dropping which was so perfect for that instance. Cecile De France (as Marie Lelay) was great in her own right. Though admittedly I had to focus more on the subtitles that I was not able to “really” notice her performance. One of the things that got me was the scene between George and Marcus (Frankie McLaren) when he was “connecting” with him, describing how his brother is. That was a true tearjerker scene. You could actually feel the pain of Marcus.

It’s been months since I encountered such a brilliant film and it’s such a pleasant surprise since, at first, I do not have any impressions of the movie – probably the reason why I deeply enjoy this film.

I Am Sam

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Just recently watched I Am Sam (New Line Cinema) on HBO and it brought back such memories when I watched this for the first time. The problem is when I turned the channel to HBO it was just starting… what’s the problem? You really need to be emotionally ready for this movie. I was not but I had to endure it but it’s so worth it.

This is one of the movies that you just cannot turn your back at every scene. Sam Dawson (Sean Penn) is remarkable in this movie. I appreciate the scenes were he is at work (Starbucks and KFC) trying his best to do a good job even though sometimes it just goes bad but the spirit and determination for him to earn a living to be able to provide his daughter a good life really pinches your gut.

There are so many powerful scenes in the movie – too many to mention. Some of my favorites were the courtroom scene, Sam trying very hard to organize his thoughts as he answers the questions for the lawyers; When Sam met his daughter, Lucy Diamond Dawson (Dakota Fanning) for the first time after being separated by Child Services – very powerful and believable; The confrontation between Sam and Rita Harrison-Williams (Michelle Pheiffer) when Rita succumbs to the vulnerability of telling Sam that her life is not as perfect as Sam thinks; And when Randy Carpenter (Laura Dern), the temporary parent and shelter for Lucy Diamond, went to Sam’s house to return his daughter – the connection of the father-daughter was that strong that convinced Randy that Lucy Diamond is better off being with her father.

The cast were perfect for their roles. And the nomination of Sean Penn was very well deserved. I also liked that Diane Wiest as Annie Cassell, Sam’s neighbor and who helped him raise Lucy Diamond as an infant. Loretta Devine plays Margaret Calgrove, a social worker who recommended that Lucy Diamond will be better in a normal parents and home. And of course Richard Shiff plays Mr. Turner, the smooth and cocky prosecutor.

I really recommend this to everyone who wants to feel good at the end of movie but do expect some tears to flow down every now and then. Though this is such an old movie (2001), it’s also good to revisit the movie and enjoy and celebrate being human. It’s very true that “Love is all you need.”

Due Date

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I really couldn’t say that I fell in love with the movie from the very start. Though Due Date (Warner Bros.) has a good and simple plot, and achieving a typical “odd couple” for the journey was set. I guess the “complications” along the way was a tad bit too stretchy for me. Don’t get me wrong, the acting was great but it’s a bit too shallow and somewhat forgettable, though still entertaining. Robert Downey, Jr. plays Peter Highman; Zach Galifianakis plays Ethan Tremblay and/or Ethan Chase; Michelle Monaghan plays Sarah Highman; and Jaime Foxx plays Darryl. There was also a scene with Danny McBride who plays a disabled Western Union employee and he is so hilarious.

I did have some issues on how Zach Galifianakis played his role. It was second guessing is he was gay in the movie on the basis of his mannerisms, like the way he walked or the way he handles his dog. Not that there’s really something wrong with his character but it wasn’t really clear and precise so it tends to be speculated and until the end of the movie, I was still wondering.

I also had a problem with the gun shooting scene. The thing that I don’t get is that Zach’s role is not retarded or lacks some common sense, though clumsy most of the time, but to accidentally shoot Robert was a bit desperate. I guess that’s how simple the storyline is that they need obstacles like this to stretch the movie a bit. It was an intense scene when both Ethan (Zach) and Peter (Robert) started doubting the paternity of the unborn child of Sarah (Michelle) in connection with Darryl (Jaime) and it will only be answered and clarified once the baby was borne. It kept you guessing and second guessing until they reached the hospital where Michelle was giving birth.

But one thing I did appreciate is the unfound friendship that was borne between them all throughout the journey. A true “odd couple” plot. There were intense scenes where they either despise, resent, and hate each other or empathize, understand, and appreciate each other.

Overall, I still do recommend this movie for those who just want to be entertained with no expectations of the movie or even the characters. The lessons of the movie is also worthwhile and basically you can meet new friends in the oddest of places – they did.


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I must admit that I was surprised in a way on how the story of Megamind (Dreamworks) would appear of the big screen. The trailers and teasers would be enough to entice you to watch but it’s such a revelation on how the story progressed and ends. This is one movie that has it’s own twists and turns which keep you in tuned and glued to your seat.

The actors and their voices were perfectly cast for this movie. The voices are very distinct and it’s easily recognizable. Will Ferrel as Megamind, Tina Fey as Roxanne Ritchie, David Cross as Minion (a cute character I must say), Johan Hill as Hal Stewart and Tighten, Brad Pitt as Metro Man, and Ben Stiller as Bernard. It’s not only a delight on how the actors do complement the characters but the storyline is very amusing and it will keep you guessing until it unfolds itself in the end.

Megamind’s character, as a super villain, is something that will grow on you. It leaves me in awe and wanting to get a stuff toy for myself. For a villain, I rarely find them amusing (who does?) but the way his character was formed and explained, it all made sense why he is that way and the more you get to know him, the more you not only understand but somehow appreciate him as well.

Lastly, this is one movie that although offers 3D version of the movie, it certainly didn’t add great value for money. I watched it in regular 2D format and it’s awesome all by itself without paying double for something that you have to wear the whole entire movie. Sometimes, it makes me wonder and question what movies are best suited for the 3D format.

A very highly recommended movie for the whole family with very valuable lessons that some evil has the potential to be good after all. For those who watched it, you know what I’m talking about and for those who haven’t — what the hell are you waiting for?


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The moment my partner brought home a DVD copy of Altitude (fresh from the USA) I kinda knew what I was in for. I am really not a fan of bloody death type of movies but this different. It’s more suspense and thriller. Funny but the story takes place inside a small airplane with a group of friends who are flying the plane all by themselves.

During their flight, something went wrong. The instruments started malfunctioning that made the plane increase in altitude and they’re slowly running out of gas. They encountered a storm and this is where the thriller starts. A mysterious force is trying to kill each one of them but only one has the power to stop this force.

As far as actors are concerned, I’m not that keen to critic their skills because they’re not as popular as the others so there’s no point of comparison but it doesn’t shy away from the storyline. This way you just focus on the story more than the acting. And this this type of movie, who needs famous actors – just a huge waste on the budget.

You do feel that you’re at the edge of your seat once you’re trying to figure out what is happening to them and it doesn’t fall short of the suspense and thriller factor. The story is solid and you just want to make sure you see the ending to try and get the whole story. Though I have to admit that some petty conversations inside the plane is a bit corny but it does set the precedence on the actors character so in a way it’s effective.

For a low budget movie, this is a good deal. Not sure if this has being shown here already but if ever you should try to watch it but make sure you’re up to some shocks and edge of the seat seating. And it’s not going to be shown, try to get a copy.

The Secret of Kells

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I first known of The Secret of Kells was in the Academy Awards when it was nominated for Best Animated Feature. From there I just feel the need to have a copy of this DVD. It took a while to search for this movie since it’s hardly known here in our country but with patience I was able to get hold of a copy. And true enough, I indeed affirm that it’s truly deserve a nomination.

The movie is quite interesting though the diction if a bit too much for me but then again it’s very Celtic-Irish in nature so I am very thankful for the subtitles. The story is based on Celtic mythology where adventure and magic coincides which makes it a great storyline. Though I am clueless with this type of mythology, it’s a great tale nevertheless.

One of the intriguing characters is Abbott Cellach (voice of Brendan Gleeson), the uncle of Brendan – the main character, on his issues about containing and restraining his nephew to stay within the bounds of the village and not wander around in the forest. But knowing the intense curiosity from Brendan plus the need to get something from the forest, that’s where he meets Aisling, a mysterious young wolf-girl who lives in the forest. Then the adventure begins.

I’m just sure if this is something I would recommend for the children. Though it’s a cartoon, it does come across as a bit too deep and dark. It still could be watched by kids but there should be some sort of explanation on certain scenes like “Why do they need five goose feathers?” or “Do they really need to go to the forest just to get the berry for ink?” But again, this would be a very interactive type of movie where you can discuss how and why things happen. But no matter what you decide, this movie is a very good movie – a magical, mystical, mysterious movie.

Superman/Batman: Apocalypse

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I don’t think that I will ever outgrow my fascination with cartoon or animation of superheroes. It doesn’t matter what company made it whether it’s from DC or Marvel. It’s a great simple escape into a world that good wins over evil, and the hero saves the day type of storyline.

I first came across this DVD from my partner. The thing is we were expecting something else. We were expecting that this would be the movie of the actual apocalypse between the battle of Darkseid vs. Superman and Batman. Don’t get me wrong, this movie has the components of the three but it is a different story. Despite the surprise of not watching that, we were entertained as well because it’s another one of those twists and introduction of a new superhero. I am referring to Supergirl. I must admit that I have no clue as to the origin of Super Girl and somehow this movie seemed to make sense. One of the interesting thing to know is that Supergirl is actually stronger than Superman but one of the boggling things is that if Kara (Supergirl) was able to escape the Planet Krypton just as Kal-El (Superman) when they were infants, then how come Superman is older?

It was a bit disappointing that Batman’s contribution to the story is a bit insignificant or forgettable compared to Wonder Woman. I mean Wonder Woman played a big role in the story from training Supergirl in Paradise Island also her role in fighting with Big Barda in defeating the Furies. I guess probably she’s more powerful with her power than Batman’s.

I particularly liked the battle of Wonder Women in apocalypse together with Big Barda, who was once the leader of the Furies but changed sides. It amazing to see the women kicking some evil women butts. I also liked the final battle between Darkseid vs. Superman and Supergirl. It was apparent that Supergirl did have stronger powers compared to Superman, which was great and all the more that she’s on the good side.

The movie was generally awesome and all the more I crave for more movies like this. Though honestly, I do not find this to be a General Patronage type of movie because of the violence and death scenes but for adults with child-like hearts this is a movie you should watch.

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