Movie Review: Captain America Civil War

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So this was probably one of the most anticipated movies of the spring, despite the fact that it was up against some intense competition, with Jungle Book and Mother’s Day being strong performers. However, I was pretty sure this one would take the number one spot, as it’s already set records outside the US. And for once, a big budget blockbuster is pleasing critics and hitting all the right notes with audiences.

And it had a lot of notes to hit.

The film opens in 1991, with a frozen Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) being thawed out for another in a series of murderous missions. One after another, the code words needed to activate the killer are spoken: “daybreak … furnace … homecoming … freight car …” Flash forward to present-day Lagos, where an Avengers squad made up of Captain America (Chris Evans), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Falcon (Anthony Mackie), and Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) is foiling the theft of a biological weapon. There’s a shit ton of casualties and it all goes downhill for the Avengers from there when they have to submit for government oversight.

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There’s a lot going on, but they managed to balance it pretty well. I never got too confused, despite a cast of what feels like millions. They go through ever doggone country in the world and tie in every other franchise that Joss Wheaton ever read a comic on, and they never stop moving. All the actors blended into their characters, and there’s a lot of characters to keep straight.

But for the most part, I still knew what was going on, because the plot’s pretty straight forward. They don’t want to deal with United Nations regulators telling them what to do, despite the wake of destruction they often leave. It doesn’t become a one sided argument, because it argues the point from both sides. I mean, when you see what they leave behind when they’re being heroic, you can kind of see the government’s point.

“Yeah, guys, you got that lady’s purse back from a mugger, but there were 45 civilian casualties and your caused $85 billion worth of damage to the city. Maybe next time, don’t start with the nuclear option?”

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It all eventually culminates in one of the best battle scenes I’ve ever seen. It should have been confusing, or too much, but it wasn’t. The direction is subtle but the action is perfectly choreographed, which is why I never felt like it was too much, when this movie should be the definition of too much. There’s a method to this madness, and I didn’t even resent the over the top ads for future movies.

The latest offering of Captain America is a misnomer, because it’s got just about every other character you can think of. But it’s extremely well-done to the point where you can follow it easily. It’s controlled chaos and worth the watch. It’s one of those rare movies that’s critic and audience approved and should not be missed.

WE GIVE IT: 4.5 STARS!

four and a half stars

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Movie Review: Avengers: Age of Ultron – Easy, Stupid Fun With A Ridiculously High Budget

The summer movie season rolled out with the first big blockbuster of the season. The much anticipated Avengers: Age of Ultron is finally out. While not the best in the series, it certainly looks like the most expensive.

The premise is this. Tony Stark/Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) has created a villain. Ultron was initially designed to protect the planet earth. Of course, because it’s artificial intelligence, it immediately becomes an evil robot bent on world domination.

When will people learn?

The avengers, Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Steve Rogers/Captain America (Chris Evans), Clint Barton/Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Bruce Banner/Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) all get together to save the day. As if there weren’t enough main characters to remember, be prepared for a couple more including Pietro Maximoff/Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and sister Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen).

The humor that made the first few movies good is still there and fans of the comic books series will appreciate some of the tongue in cheek comments, like why Thor is the only one who can lift his hammer. There’s a few side stories going on where the writers try to inject some humanity into their characters, by showing the burgeoning love affair between the Black Widow and Hulk, as well as Hawkeye’s rural life.

Despite that, this movie is nothing you don’t expect. It’s easy, stupid fun with a ridiculously high budget. Everything unfolds as you’d expect and it’s pretty much a paint by numbers big budget action movie. They didn’t climb too far out of the box on this one.

It’s absolutely CGI heavy, with extensive battle scenes filmed from impossible angles, with people doing impossible things. While visually stunning, it feels a bit like the battle scenes were padded out for the purposes of fleshing out a simplistic script.

Everyone reprises their characters with the same enthusiasm as they had in the first few movies. That’s a feat in and of itself, as they’ve all been at this for a while. Iron Man is still charming, the Black Widow is still creepy, and everyone still wonders why Hawkeye is even there.

This is Joss Whedon’s last direction go around with this franchise, and I will say he went out on a high note. The movie is well done, fun to watch and easy to follow. It’s exactly what a big budget blockbuster should be, and Whedon has managed to keep it going for awhile now. Here’s hoping when someone else takes the helm, it will be just as good.

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There’s already a new one planned, Avengers: Infinity War Part 1, that is expected out in 2018. This is a franchise that has still managed to not lose its steam and will probably be around for a long time to come…as long as they keep making money.

While a bit heavy on battle scenes and CGI, it’s still a commendable effort and was the perfect start for the summer movie season. If you’re looking for fun that won’t make you think so much, this one is worth the watch. .

WE GAVE IT: 4 Stars – Watch the Official Trailer and Official Movie Poster below!

4 stars

 

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Introducing the Marvel Movie Marathon and the Avengers: Age of Ultron Marathon Trailer (Video)!

58921LThis is the type of news we like to start the week with.  This is the season where Marvel fans go completely out of their minds with anticipation.  I would have to say this is pretty cool for just movie fans in general.

How does 29 hours of all 11 Marvel movies released since 2008 sound?  To my girlfriend that probably sounds like a nightmare, but to my collegeroommate (who is now 34) it sounds like two amazing days off of work.  This is all going to go down at AMC and Regal Movie theaters located around the country.

Fans who actually manage to stick around for the entire thing will be rewarded with the first showing of Avengers: Age of Ultron!

So far Regal movies have identified 4 locations and AMC theaters have many more locations but will not be showing all eleven Marvel films.  Here is how they breakdown:

REGAL

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They will be showing all 11 films.  If you live in the following cities you are in Luck:

Ontario, CA,

Atlanta, GA

King of Prussia, PA

Houston, TX

AMC

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Amc will be showing only 6 but they have many more locations, including some that are very close to me.  Here is their list of cities:

Atlanta, GA,

Baltimore, MD

Boston, MA

Chicago, IL

Cincinnati, OH

Dallas, TX

Denver, CO

Detroit, MI

Hosuton, TX

Indianapolis, IN

Jacksonville, FL

Kansas City, MO

Los Angeles, CA

Miami, FL

Minneapolis, MN

New Orleas, LA

New York / New Jersey

Philadelphia, PA

Phoenix, AZ

San Diego, CA

San Francisco, CA

Seattle, WA

Tallahassee, FL

Tampa, FL

Toronto, ON

Washington, DC


 

I advise you to visit both sites for the latest most up to date information and Advance ticket sales.

REGAL MOVIES  |  AMC

WHAT IS A MARATHON TRAILER?

I can’t believe you don’t know what a marathon trailer is!  And you call yourself a movie fan?  Of course you don’t know what it is because I made the term up.  It sounded much better than a “mashed up, long ass” trailer, but that’s exactly what it is.

A Youtuber by the name of JohnnyB2K (cool name), has decided to take all three Age of Ultron trailers and link them together in chronological order.  I think he did a pretty good job despite all of the petty Youtube comments on the sound quality.  To those people pressing thumbs down I say, “Where’s your trailer”.

JohnnyB2K tried to put everything in chronological order to the best of his ability.  The order dictates a lot of the story so it will be interesting to see how close he got.  People are complaining about spoilers from this trailer.  Maybe they missed the part where he just used the EXISTING TRAILERS. People, it’s not that serious.

Maybe I will see some of you on April 29th.  I will be the guy wearing one of those hats that holds the drinks on each side and an adult diaper on.  Can’t afford bathroom breaks.  Enjoy the trailer!

Movie Review: Mortdecai (2015) – A bit like Austin Powers…only not remotely funny.

31JAN2015 - 3I arrived at the theater knowing that this movie was going to have problems. No matter how good, people don’t tend to go to movies they can’t pronounce. It’s not that they fear said movie might be over their head. It’s just, when they’re talking on the phone to their friends, and telling them they’re going to see a movie, they don’t want to sound like an idiot. For example;

“Hey Essa, what’re you doing tonight?”

“Going to see Motouchy? Mordeashai? I don’t know. It’s that movie where Johnny Depp has another weird mustache.”

“Mortdecai?”

“That’s the one.”

Silly name aside, this movie had potential. Who doesn’t love a dashing art dealer and Johnny Depp in full character mode? In fact, this is a role that seamed custom made for Johnny Depp, much like his instant gold hit with Jack Sparrow. But in this case, something doesn’t work.

The premise is this. Mortdecai is in debt and he needs to climb out of it. When a valuable painting is stolen, a security agent agrees to let Mortdecai off the hook if he helps track down the crooks, who also have ties to terrorism. Mortdecai takes the job and wife Johanna (Gwyneth Paltrow) comes along to help. This premise is based on one of the books in the Mortdecai series “Don’t Point That Thing at Me.” I have to say, the books were far better than the movie adaptation.

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For some reason, Mordecai felt really cartoony. That would usually work fine, but for the fact that no one else felt cartoony. It was like Depp was living in his own alternate reality, while everyone else was in real reality. He went too far with the character and turned him into a caricature instead. When you toss in a lot of adult humor, with a main character who feels like a cartoon, things just get uncomfortable. I have to say, it’s a bit like Austin Powers…only not remotely funny.

Also, Gwyneth Paltrow is not designed for comedy. Sure, she might be ok in romantic comedies, but straight comedy is not her forte. I feel like her part would have been better played by an unknown. This is a movie that requires the ability to do gross out humor and Paltrow seemed unwilling to let go.

The cast flopped between trying too hard or not trying hard enough. Nobody hit the nail on the head.

It’s a strange movie to find an audience for. While the characters themselves feel like they were designed for children, the constant sex jokes and curse words give this movie an R Rating. That means that the audience who might have liked it, teens, are left out of the loop, while most adults would just find it stupid.

This might just be the flop of the year. The studio apparently had big dreams for it, indicating that they felt it would become a franchise along the lines of The Pink Panther. But after earning only a paltry $4 million, which isn’t even half of Depp’s fee, this movie is nothing short of a disaster. It’s slowly sinking down at the box office, holding the 9th spot, but it’s probably likely that the movie will disappear entirely after only a few more days.

We Gave it: 1 Star: Official Movie Trailer and Movie Poster Below

1 star

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