Archive for the Movies Category

Star Trek Beyond… In Review

Posted in Movie, Movie Review, Movies, Star Trek, Writing with tags , , , on January 7, 2017 by darkjade68

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Before I Say Anything Else, Let Me Start By Saying I Respect That They Dedicated This Film To Both Leonard Nimoy, And Anton Yelchin (Checkov)

Leonard Nimoy Was One Of My Favorite People On The Planet, And Spock Was My Favorite Character In The Original “Star Trek” Shows And Films

And Anton Yelchin Was One Of My Favorite, If Not My Favorite Part Of These New “Star Trek” Films. He Was Just A Very Special Talent.

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STAR TREK BEYOND… IN REVIEW

Let me start by saying that preview above, sadly, was much better than the actual Film.

When I originally saw the preview for this Film (I think it was a different preview than the one above, which is actually pretty good), I actually didn’t think that it looked like it was going to be very good… But, as time has gone by, once I saw it was orderable, I’ve kinda wanted to take a look. Partly because I liked the first two Reboot “Star Trek” Films, partly because it’s a “Star Trek” Film.

The Writing; After watching this Film last night, I knew it would be a challenge to try and explain what appeared to go wrong overall with this film. My biggest suspicion, was the Writing. Followed by possibly the Editing, and lastly the Directing.

That in mind, I thought I’d start with the Writing in determining this.

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The First And Second Reboot “Star Trek” Films were written by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, who appear to have been working together for a long time on such films as “Tranformers” I and II, and “Cowboys And Alians”.

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They were also joined by Damon Lindelof on the Second Reboot, “Star Trek Into Darkness”. He also worked with them on “Cowboys And Aliens”, and also was one of the writers on “World War Z”.

All of these were decent films, though their efforts in “Star Trek” Reboots were probably better.

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Writing this Third Reboot Film, “Star Trek Beyond”, was Simon Pegg (The Actor who plays Scotty in the Reboot films), and Doug Jong. Both of them have previous writing credits (Most notably “Shaun Of The Dead”, which Simon Pegg Co Wrote)

I’ve never seen any of either of their work… I’ve only heard that “Shaun Of The Dead” is funny.

All I can say is, this film felt very sloppy, and disjointed.

The Story;

Though there were some good concepts here and there, for the most part the whole thing felt like “Then this happened… Then this happened… Then this happened,” with no sense of… Solidity I guess… Still difficult to explain, lol

One very sad thing I will say is, J. J. Abrams (Along with  everyone else involved with the First Two Reboots) did a great job of reinventing the Old/Original Star Trek Characters, and making us look forward to their new Adventures.

But this third film not only took the Original 1966 Characters for granted, it also took the New 2009 Rebooted Characters for granted.

Which I gotta say, is really sad for the Actors, even more so than the fans of Star Trek.

And it makes me wonder how each of them actually felt about this film.

But that info. is probably impossible to find out there, as I guess there’s a Sequel to this latest film already planned.

The Directing; It’s difficult for me to discern how much of the issue with this Film was the Directing, how much was the Writing, and how much was the Editing.

I know they all played a part.

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The only film I’ve seen that Justin Lin Directed was “The Fast And The Furious Tokyo Drift”.

I actually liked that film. Though I admit, I really liked a couple of the actors, and I love Tokyo at night.

Still, it wasn’t bad.

STAR TREK BEYOND

I’m curious to hear what people think in regards to how much of the problem was the Directing, and how much was the Writing in this film… But I suspect the Writing is the main problem.

Editing; All I can say is, something was off… But maybe it had to do with the Content/Shots they had to work with, or just bad Writing, or unintuitive Directing… Really hard for me to put my finger on it.

Actors; 

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What can I say, the Acting was good… Admittedly, some of them seemed a bit off sometimes… But I suspect that had to do with either the Writing, or Directing… Really hard to say… But their efforts were consistent with the First Two Reboot Films.

Characters;

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Like I say, the Acting was good, but as I mentioned above, I do feel that how well they developed the Characters in the First Two Reboots was taken for granted in this film… The Cliche’s, if you will, became multi layered… Leaving a feeling that you were only seeing the shell of these characters. Sorry to be repetitive, but Writing, and/or Writing and Directing.

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And the New Character Jaylah (Sofia Boutella), wasn’t an issue as I feared from the preview… If anything, I felt she had to kind of be in ‘neutral’ during some of the film, because either the Writing or Directing just wasn’t good enough.

In Conclusion;

It’s important in reading this article/post that you realize, I’m not Writing this to ‘Slam’ the new film, the Writers or Director… I’m just an extreme admirer of the whole “Star Trek” Franchise, and so every film, and series is important to me.

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That said, lets face it, J. J. Abrams isn’t exactly easy to replace. And though he did Produce this Third Reboot, he did not Direct it.

We all know he shifted from the “Star Trek” Franchise to the “Star Wars” Franchise, and there’s a chance that “Star Trek Beyond” may have paid the price…

Though, I’m definitely not slamming him for that… In my opinion, he has successfully Rebooted both the “Star Trek” and “Star Wars” series.

In truth, he’s such a busy, and highly demanded guy, I doubt he would have Directed the Third Film anyway…

Final Thoughts; I was terribly disappointed in this film. In fact, even the ‘hey it’s just a movie, have fun watching it’ factor wasn’t quite enough to keep me watching the whole thing… The main reason I watched the whole thing was so that I could do this post to be honest with you.

And the main reason I did this post, is because I know they can do a lot better than this film… Because I’ve seen them do it, for one.

What can I say, I’m a Writer, and I’m a Filmmaker… And this Film left me very unsettled.

One last thing, I really do want to give credit to those involved because it was obviously a behemoth of a film to Produce.

Nuff Said

5 Stars Out Of 10

Check it out, and let me know what your opinion is

DarkJade/James-

Directing Is A Challenge… Acting & Directing Is A Gift

Posted in Film Making, Filmcraft, Films of Meaning, Movie, Movies, Writing with tags , , , on December 6, 2016 by darkjade68

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In 1995, Mel Gibson Directed, And Starred In The Film “Braveheart”

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At The Time, It Was One Of My Favorite Films Of All Time

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But Two Years Before, In 1993, Mel Gibson Directed His First Film, “The Man Without A Face”

Which He Also Acted In

Originally Casted To Play The Lead Role Was William Hurt

But When He Ended Up Not Playing The Role, Mel Stepped In

I Knew I Liked The Film, But When I Watched It Again Today, I Remembered Why

The Writing And Directing Were Good, But It Was Mel Gibson’s Acting, And Character, That Truly Inspired Me

If You Haven’t Seen It, I Recommend You Do!

Captain America: Civil War

Posted in Movie, Movie Trailers, Movies, Writing with tags , on November 29, 2015 by darkjade68

Avengers Age Of Ultron… In Review

Posted in Film Review, Movie Review, Movies with tags , , , , on October 12, 2015 by darkjade68

Avengers-Age-of-Ultron-FAN-MADE-Poster-the-avengers-35940286-1200-18002Avengers Age Of Ultron… In Review

My History With “The Avengers”;

Let me start by saying, as a kid the Comic Books I read were “The Avengers”, “Captain America”, “Iron Man” and “West Coast Avengers”… And from DC, “The Flash”…. That said, when the movies associated to those characters started coming out, I was the perfect audience for them. But, I will admit, at this point, I’m a bit tired of Superhero Films… Granted, I know full well that they’re not going anywhere, in fact DC Comics is about to more heavily weigh in soon.

I will say this about the first two “Avenger” Movies, they very much remind me of the Comics. It’s not all that easy to juggle that many characters, but they do achieve it successfully.

The First “Avengers” Movie I really enjoyed… Not as much as I enjoyed the First “Iron Man” Movie… But a lot more than I enjoyed the First “Captain America” Movie. Oh, and both “Thor” Movies are very good.

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Story;

When I think of “The Avengers”, or “Superman”, and in some cases “The X-Men”, one of my thoughts is how can anything on Earth stand a chance. There lies the challenge. In the First Avengers Film, Loki was the bad guy who was from Asgard… And Alien Creatures aided him. Case and point. If you’re looking for the more ‘here on Earth’ intricate hero stories, watch the “Batman” Movies, or the “Arrow”, or “Daredevil” Television Series… The Films are great, and the TV Series are a lot of fun.

But that’s not what you will find in movies such as “The Avengers”.

That said, the Story was interesting enough, but as in the First “Avengers” Film, the Characters, and quieter Character Scene interactions are the greatest strength of these movies. Credit goes to Joss Whedon (The Director), whose Character Directing is what in my opinion is his strength (He wrote and Directed the “Buffy The Vampire Slayer” Television Series for all that don’t know).

Avengers-Age-of-Ultron-Character-Poster-Captain-AmericaThe Characters;

My Favorite Character in the First “Avengers” Movie, to my surprise, was Scarlett Johansson’s “Black Widow”… No, not because of her looks, because of her Acting, which is why I started liking her when I first saw “The Horse Whisperer”, which I believe was her first film. My Second favorite character in the First “Avengers”, was “The Hulk” (Mark Ruffalo). Not counting Robert Downey Jr.’s “Iron Man”, who I was first introduced to in “Iron Man”… He was amazing in the “Iron Man” Film, and carried it forward in “The Avengers”.

But enough about the First Film. In the “Avengers Age Of Ultron” Film, to my pleasant surprise, “Captain America” was my favorite character. I only say to my pleasant surprise, because though I already liked Chris Evans (From “Fantatastic Four” The Human Torch), I wasn’t all that happy with his portrayal in the “Captain America” Film. I think it was more of a Directing, Writing thing though. But he got better in “The Avengers”, and better in the Second “Captain America” Film, and even better in this Film. My next favorite character was a true surprise to me… A Character I had completely forgotten about existing, since I read the “Avenger” comic books years ago. Who that character is, is a bit of a spoiler, but I guess most of the world has seen this Film already, so I’ll just post a picture of the Character below, but say no more.

avengers_age-of-ultron_the-vision-transformation-2Played by no other than Paul Bettany, who I love, and who’s ‘voice’ is used in both the Original “Avengers”, and all of the “Iron Man” Films… Nuff said.

Beyond that, the other characters are fine, the Film begins with a big action sequence, which visually is of course entertaining, but I do admit that the immediate banter between characters felt like residue from the first Film. And so at first, I found myself more waiting, than watching for the Film to improve. But it does.

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Review;

In the end, between Captain America’s character who I really enjoyed, Paul Bettany’s character who I also very much enjoyed, and Joss Whedon’s more heart felt Character Directed moments, I left this Film feeling both Entertained, and satisfied. The reality is, they pour an immense amount of effort into these Films, and we get to watch them for one small price compared to their Production Enormity. And thus, I rate this Film a 7.25 out of 10.

Definitely check it out if you like Hero Films… And if you don’t, you still might enjoy certain characters, and certain moments.

Nuff Said

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The Japanese Trailer For Ant-Man

Posted in Movies with tags , , on June 26, 2015 by darkjade68

Kill The Messenger & Into The Woods… In Review

Posted in Film, Movie Review, Movies with tags , on March 29, 2015 by darkjade68

kill-the-messenger-54b41f5362d9aKill The Messenger & Into The Woods… In Review

Kill The Messenger

Story; The story was decent… It’s a true story.

Directing; The Directing was ok… Overall it felt a bit lack luster to me

Acting/Characters;

kill-the-messenger-2014-jeremy-renner-movie-trailer-release-date-cast-plotGary Webb (Jeremy Renner); I’m a fan of Jeremy Renner… Ever since “Hurt Locker” (If you haven’t seen it, do)

I also liked him as Hawkeye in Avengers. He’s a good actor. In this he was ok… Visually he reminded me a lot of Sean Penn. He did a decent job in this, but I really feel like the lack luster Directing affected all of the Cast.

There are a lot of good Actors in this Film, but like I say, everything is affected by the Directing.

Review; In the end, this is a Lack Luster Film… The subject matter, however, is important. I’d give this Film a 6 out of 10. See it for the content.

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Into The Woods

Story; I have to say that I loved the Musical/Play version of this Story. Stephen Sondheim is a Genius.

That said, I enjoyed the stage version (Which I saw on T.V) much more… But I hadn’t really expected the Film to capture that.

Director; Rob Marshall is great (Moulon Rouge). He did a decent job with this Film.

Acting/Characters;

283f9a93-5e09-4bed-8c7f-a02f0f91bdbe_meryl_streep_witch_into_the_woodsMeryl Streep (Witch); When I originally saw that they were making this into a movie, my main concern was that it would be made into a Meryl Streep Showcase. But it wasn’t. Meryl Steep is one of the best Actresses of our time, however, I also find her as a person to be very self absorbed, Lol. I realize that, that is often a character trait of actors… But for me, it sometimes shines through in her performances. In the case of the Witch, there was maybe one scene that felt a bit much, but beyond that, she did a good job.

depp-into-the-woods-1335_612x380-600x372Little Red Riding Hood (Lilla Crawford); To me, Little Red Riding Hood was probably the best Actor/Character in the Film. I’m not talking Oscar Worthy Performance, I just found her Character to be the one that drew me the most into the Story.

As you see, Johnny Depp was asked to play the Wolf, and he was fine… I do love him as an Actor, but for me, after seeing Jeff Goldbloom do it in the Stage Production, everything else pretty much pales.

The Rest Of The Cast; Once again, many good Actors in this Film. And they all did a decent job. But Little Red Riding Hood and the Witch were probably my favorite. Kinda liked the Baker too.

Review; Overall, I enjoyed watching this movie. Having seen the Original, it really paled. But the effort on the Directors part, as well as the Actors, and the overall Production was very good. I’d give this Film a 6.75 out of 10. See it if you like Musicals… And young Adults would probably like it, ages 10 to 14… Not that it’s really a Kids Movie, but I do think they would be a more forgiving audience when it comes to Fairtale-ish Things.

As Promised, Star Trek The Motion Picture… In Review (In Honor Of Leonard Nimoy & Spock)

Posted in Movie Review, Movies, Science Fiction with tags , , , on March 15, 2015 by darkjade68

Star-Trek-Motion-PictureAs Promised, Star Trek The Motion Picture… In Review (In Honor Of Leonard Nimoy & Spock)

On February 27 I Posted that in Honor of Leonard Nimoy, I would would Watch and Review all 6 of the Original

Star Trek Films

In all honesty, I began with the First Film, knowing that when I saw it when I was young,

I was seriously disappointed, and frankly, bored by it

That statement might not sound all too friendly, but I was 10 to 11 years old

“Star Wars” had come out two years before (Which may not have helped)

And I don’t know, it’s just the way I felt

Since then, I can not recall if I’ve actually sat through the whole thing, and in all honesty

It has been hard doing so, Lol

I know I sound both mean and critical right now, but in all honesty, I’m not, Lol

Here’s my review

(That preview pretty much captures what I mean, Lol)

Story;

The story is horrible, and terribly executed. (I know I sound like a jerk right now, but I’m really not, I’m just honest, Lol)

IMDB DISCRIPTION

When an alien spacecraft of enormous power is spotted approaching Earth, Admiral Kirk resumes command of the Starship Enterprise in order to intercept, examine and hopefully stop the intruder.

Sounds typical, but, read on

star trek motion picture 8Directing;

Lets just start with the Directing, which certainly played its’ role in this very not good film.

When I first sat down to rewatch this film, I got through about a third of it, and needed to take a break. First of all, there are an immense amount of drawn out scenes, that make the film drag terribly. And the acting, wow, really not good. As I started watching it again today, I found myself thinking that what this film is, is a 60’s Sci-Fi, simply shot in the 70’s… But after looking up the films that this Director has Directed, these three stood out… “The Sound Of Music”, “West Side Story”, and “The Day The Earth Stood Still”…

After texting my brother that perhaps the film would have been better, if there had been more singing, Lol… I continued watching. (I actually love “The Sound Of Music”)

When I estimated that it was like a 60’s Sci-Fi Film, I may have missed the mark… It’s probably more like a 50’s Sci-Fi Film, which makes more since… I can’t really remember “The Day The Earth Stood Still”, though I may have actually liked it, as it is a classic I believe… The stretcccched scenes, combined with the extreme silence in this film (Like 2001, but I think less deliberate), made it extremely painful to watch.

Even as I continued watching it today, I literally fell asleep… I was tired a bit, but I just couldn’t keep my focus on it, it was painfully slow and dry. This film literally succeeded in capturing ‘zero’ % of the spirit from the original shows… Which were largely Character Driven… So many great characters in this film just standing around, being serious, and wearing tan clothing, Lol

I know this first review of six doesn’t seem much like a tribute to Leonard Nimoy, but I do believe that honesty and integrity are important to him, and thus I am just trying to be honest.

I know that I am not the first or only that felt this way about this film, in fact I do believe that the fan response was probably what helped to inspire the franchise to do such a good job with “Wrath Of Khan”… But we’ll get to that film next, after I watch it again as well.

Characters;

Like I say, watching all these great characters that you’ve come to love from the original series, just stand around and be morose with one another, was sincerely painful.

My Review;

I have to sadly give this film a 3 out of 10… A film that I wouldn’t normally review, but in honor of Leonard, I will review them all.

I hope that this review doesn’t appear harsh, or disrespectul, I assure you, I’m just trying to be completely honest… On to “Wrath Of Khan”.

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