I really don’t have much to say here, Robots had a lot of potential to be interesting but sadly it doesn’t amount to much.
Shailene Woodley is definitely trying here and the movie itself at least looks decently made, there’s a few shots here that are nice to look at. But that’s where the positives end.
Somehow the movie makes the concept of Robots taking over incredibly dull, with a very tacked on political message that really does not come together at all. The movie quickly turns into a mess, the road to get to the end of the movie is a rough one. I absolutely hate using this word in my reviews but Robots is about as boring as watching paint dry, there is very little going on and none of the characters are given proper development.
Crater is yet another Disney+ Original Movie that a had a humongous amount of potential but falls very short when the movie tries to execute it’s themes.
Crater has decent enough act the standout is McKenna Grace who gives a strong performance that has some character moments that help develop her character, Kid Cudi is pretty fun but there is honestly not a whole lot to say about him here.
The main problems here are mostly the writing and world building, the writing leaves a lot more to be desired with character moments that are completely missing. Sure we are given some information about the characters but not enough to the point where the viewer will care about them, the world building is very poorly explained as well as having way too many scenes that spill out exposition for long periods of time.
What’s frustrating is Crater does wrap up pretty nicely, there’s some beautiful and emotional scenes during the final moments of the movie that actually could pull your heartstrings. But due to the very bumpy road to get to that point it really holds Crater back from being a decent movie.
Crater can be summed up as a coming of age movie but in space that has a lot of failed potential, there’s a good movie in here somewhere it’s just not showing up unfortunately.
The Artifice Girl takes the concept of AI and how it’s rapidly growing then does something quite interesting with it.
The performances from Tatum Matthews and Lance Hennriksen are quite great, they are the sole reason why the third act stands out so well and put so much power into their performances. The first bit of the movie where there’s nothing but a long but very investing interrogation room scene is quite great, while this sort of thing has been done before it still makes for great attention grabbing and really sets up the movie well.
The second act is where the movie fumbles a bit, it starts to show the movie’s low budget with some not very good acting (outside of Tatum Matthews) and writing that doesn’t quite land all that well. However the movie does start to ask questions about how ethical is AI and asks a lot of questions about Tatum Matthews’s character.
The third act performance wise with some very long scenes with Matthews and Hennriksen are quite great, story wise it becomes a bit more of a mess there’s potential here that goes a bit underutilized. Plus the movie does fall into the whole “the AI is taking over and there’s nothing we can do” area that a lot of these very low budget Sci-Fi movies tend to go down.
With that said I do actually think this was an interesting enough movie, it’s heavily flawed but there’s just the right amount of decent performances, questions of how ethical and a solid first and third (mostly) act that warrants a watch.
The Artifice Girl is available on all VOD platforms.
Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 is the latest installment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the final film of the Guardians Of The Galaxy trilogy. The discussion about superhero fatigue or the superhero genre itself putting mediocrity or flat out terrible movies is still a very relevant. Especially given with what we got so far this year, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania outside of a few performances was a horrible start to phase five and Shazam: Fury Of The Gods suffered very identical problems that Quantumania did and just sort of came and went.
However Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 is what happens when you focus on far more than just building a cinematic universe, random cameos and actually have very interesting themes with strong writing. The Guardians Of The Galaxy films I consider to be the best of the MCU and a lot of it has to do with how beautifully well written the characters are and James Gunn’s direction which are both very present here.
For starters the character’s are once again incredibly well written here, the film completes a lot of the arcs the characters have went through from the last several years, Chris Pratt once again kills it as Peter Quill, while he doesn’t get as much development here as he did in the previous movies he really doesn’t need to. The last film really wrapped up a lot of his story and in this one it tied up some loose ends which does lead to a very emotional touching end for his journey, it’s one that’s been hinted at for awhile and to see him accomplish it is truly satisfying.
Bradley Cooper is at his absolute best here as Rocket as the trailers and information about the film has said, the film takes a look at Rocket’s backstory which is quite dark, that’s one thing I should mention Vol. 3 is the darkest of the trilogy (heck this might be the darkest film of the MCU if we are going to be honest.) the backstory really does a fantastic job of building Rocket’s character, there’s so many emotions and really makes Rocket one of the most interesting characters of the MCU. There’s so much pain and sadness in the many flashbacks that truly do make you cry, Rocket’s backstory is among some of the best the MCU has ever done and it’s truly beautiful to see his arc be completed.
Dave Bautista as Drax actually goes through quite a lot of development here, he’s shown in the previous films that he really cares about the team, but here you can absolutely see the result of that. It helps that Bautista gives a phenomenal performance and really puts so much heart into the role, it always did seem like he was having a blast playing Drax whenever he was on screen and that shows here.
Karen Gillan as Nebula is yet another highlight performance of the film, while yes Gillan has always killed as Nebula but I would argue she takes the performance to a different level in this one. Not only does her arc complete in this film but it’s such a beautiful end to it as well, especially during one particularly moment at the end that has everyone together, Nebula is by far one of the most developed characters of the MCU and truly one of the most interesting as well.
Chukwudi Iwuji plays the villain High Evolutionary and it’s quite refreshing to see a villain who isn’t sympathetic at all, one of the problems a lot of people have had with some recent MCU villains is they are always either given a sympathetic backstory or make arguments where someone can say “they are right” while yes that’s not necessarily a bad thing, but when you constantly do it film after film (or show) it starts to become very old. High Evolutionary is straight up evil, he wants to commit genocide and torture creatures he sees as “not perfect” Iwuji’s performance is so unhinged that it’s to the point where it’s quite brilliant. Iwuji says that some inspirations for his performance was William Shakespeare and that really shows, he balances a lot of absolutely unhinged moments with some calm and collected moments.
James Gunn’s direction much like the previous two films is absolutely brilliant, there’s a beautiful blend of comedy and dramatic moments that help the film move along at very steady pace. It tells a beautiful story while making some very hilarious jokes, the music is once against fantastic as well. One scene in particular towards the end uses “Dog Days Are Over” by Florence + The Machine and it’s truly a brilliant use of it, the scene really puts a nice closing on an incredible journey we have had with these characters.
Lastly there’s the film itself and it’s everything that the end of a trilogy should be, it completes the many character arcs while introducing a few new elements that add to the overall themes and characters.
I know it may look like I went on a lot about the characters, but that’s honestly the main source of power in the Guardians Of The Galaxy Trilogy…the characters, since 2014 we have been on a journey with these characters that are quite unique when it comes to the writing style, the team is arguably the characters who went through the most development out of all the characters from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I believe the reason why these characters and films are so fantastic is mainly development, the characters loving each other like a family and the overall charm.
Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 is the perfect closer to the trilogy and is among one of the very best films so far this year!
Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 is playing in theaters.
Hypnotic was the May 1st Regal Mystery Movie and of the ones I’ve went to (I missed the ones for Missing and Sisu) this is definitely one of the better ones. There’s definitely a lot to like about Hypnotic and I applaud Robert Rodriguez for doing his own thing.
The performances can be a bit of a mixed bag at times, I like seeing Ben Affleck take on different roles especially these types of roles. With that said I wouldn’t call his performance good but I will say that it’s pretty entertaining at times, the supporting cast such as Alice Braga and William Fichtner are pretty solid especially Fichtner who does give an intimidating performance.
The many ideas of the movie are decently executed during the first two acts, as both acts are very engaging. There is definitely some questionable editing that makes some scenes a complete and total mess, but for the most part it tells a pretty engaging story. Character development is pretty nonexistent here, sure we are given some information about the characters but we are never really given a backstory, who they really are or why they are doing certain things.
What hurts this movie mostly is the third act that is way too fast paced and ends very abruptly, granted there are moments during the third act that are very unintentionally hilarious. But it isn’t quite enough to really save it from being a mess.
If it sounds like I didn’t go into much detail with Hypnotic it’s because the movie is hard to really talk about without spoiling. And I really don’t want to do that because I do think the several twists in Hypnotic are interesting and definitely should be seen going in as little as possible. Overall I definitely liked Hypnotic a bit more the more I thought about it, it’s not anything I don’t think I will ever come back to but it is something worth looking into.
Kids vs. Aliens is a movie I really wanted to like because there was clearly a lot of effort and talent put into it, plus it does have that classic low budget feel that’s incredibly charming. However there’s a ton of problems here that really don’t do the movie any favors.
The gore is a lot of fun and there’s truly some pretty gnarly kills that are highly entertaining, the acting is overall not bad (some performances are much better than others) and the last half of the movie is quite entertaining that does throw in a few surprises that I’ll admit I didn’t see coming. The last half is where the movie truly finds it’s footing and manages to grab the viewer’s attention.
Unfortunately for this movie it’s only 75 minutes long which isn’t necessarily a bad thing but in this case it doesn’t benefit the movie when you take a look at the first half of the movie, it’s on the bland side and takes way too much time on establishing the character’s relationships with one another. Again not necessarily a bad thing but the characters in the movie range from being very poorly written to incredibly forgettable.
It is a shame because Kids vs. Aliens does have heart and it definitely seemed like that the production was a lot of fun, but the movie really doesn’t leave the viewer with very much and really wanting a lot more from it.
The Devil Conspiracy is one of those movies where after you finish watching it you are left with saying “what?” And probably not in a good way.
I am a bit surprised I actually liked this more than I thought I was going to, meaning I thought I was going to absolutely hate this. Which let me be clear that The Devil Conspiracy is not a good movie very far from it, it’s a complete and total mess especially when the third act rolls around it spews complete and total nonsense that if you think about for more than a minute you will see how nonsensical it is.
With that said I do think the movie does reach that “it’s so bad it’s hilarious” category decently well, there’s dialogue that comes from Father Michael Marconi (played by Joe Doyle) and Lucifer (played by Joe Anderson) that truly must be heard to be believed. The interactions between the two are truly hilarious and are easily the best part of the movie, the main problem here that really does kill a lot of the unintentional humor is mainly due to how long the movie drags out.
The movie is 1 hour and 51 minutes long which it most certainly overstays it’s welcome, it becomes very tedious and makes the viewer keep checking how much time is left. As I said before the third act is nonsensical and not in a good way, between the horrible editing and dialogue at this point it seemed like nobody knew how to finish the movie so they sort of just slapped on a third act and hoped for the best.
The Devil Conspiracy is available on all VOD platforms.
65 is so far the most disappointing movie of 2023 for a multitude of reasons, 65 had a very promising premise as well having the writers from A Quiet Place and Adam Driver involved. Finally it was a movie involving dinosaurs attacking people, which is unbelievably uncommon outside of the Jurassic Park movies.
I’ll start with what worked as always, Adam Driver does a fantastic job here. Driver has always been a really strong actor and that applies here, Ariana Greenblatt is also pretty solid here as well. Driver and Greenblatt work very well together on screen there’s some genuinely sweet moments as well. There’s some neat action scenes that are pretty thrilling as well and I do appreciate the limited dialogue scenes in a lot of areas in the movie. They add some suspense that is well done for the most part.
Unfortunately that’s really where the movie ends for me, a lot of people have said this movie is basically Jurassic Park meets A Quiet Place and I can’t help but agree, while that might sound good on paper when it comes to execution it becomes a mess. The movie doesn’t do nearly enough with it’s premise and the limited dialogue scenes while interesting never really amount to anything, there’s some decently suspenseful moments that were begging to be explored more.
A lot of the sci-fi elements are very surface level at best, and the direction is sort of lifeless. While I understand that might have been the intention due to earth not having any humans at this time, it doesn’t help when 65 tries to explore Adam Driver’s character. While his past about his daughter is very upsetting the viewer just isn’t given nearly enough development to really care. It’s sort of tacked on to a very below average sci-fi movie.
Overall 65 had a lot of potential but unfortunately misses the mark, if you are a fan of Adam Driver and want to see this only because of Driver you might get something out of it otherwise I don’t recommend it.
It should really be pointed out how big the scope really is in Shin Ultraman, because wow this is a large movie that is just a huge amount of fun. There might not be a whole lot to Shin Ultraman in terms of story but there really does not need to be.
For starters the film itself is very well made, it’s anime come to life in the best possible way. Which isn’t a bit too surprising due to the director being Shinji Higuchi who directed the live action Attack On Titan parts 1 and 2 (he also did Shin Godzilla which I loved). There’s so many strange elements combined with the traditional Kaiju elements we all know and love, there’s a lot of energy to the action scenes as well as so much entertainment value.
The score is booming at different parts of the film especially during the action scenes that give the movie the extra energy it needs to bring in the viewer, it’s such a creative little movie and this is coming from someone who really didn’t watch the Ultraman tv series. I definitely have heard of the character but just haven’t checked out the series.
Honestly what you see is what you get with Shin Ultraman and what’s shown is a huge amount of fun and genuinely fantastic, some of the writing definitely could have been a bit better during the first act of the film. But overall it’s quite great and I would imagine any fan of Kaiju films or Ultraman would love this one.
Not going to lie I watched Divinity five days ago (at the time this was written) and I still don’t quite know what to think of it, Divinity was a last minute addition to my Sundance schedule. I added it mainly due to hearing some talk about it being a very “out there film” and that description doesn’t even begin to describe this film.
Divinity is if you took Mad Max and Tetsuo: The Iron Man, mixed with 16mm black and white cinematography and then made it like taking a psychedelic drug, there’s so much creativity here that it’s truly insane. The use of the 16mm black and white cinematography heavily reminds you of those very strange experimental films you come across every now and then only in film form. It also does remind you a bit of the universal monster movies as well, there’s some really spectacular use of stop motion and live action during the final battle of the film that gives it such a unique look to it.
The cast is quite great as well, Stephen Dorff is quite great but the one who steals it is Moises Arias who really gives such a interesting performance that matches the tone the film is going for, the direction from Eddie Alcazar is quite a strong one it puts you in this world where just about anything can happen. The viewer is immediately taken into this world through the visuals and cinematography that does a lot of the talking, there’s so much creativity and imagination here that is truly exciting.
Divinity is definitely not going to be for everyone, having that said if it sounds like your type of thing I do recommend checking this one out once it releases.