Sunday, June 30, 2013

Trivia Questons and Answers.

Trivia is back with some more questions.
What is the specific species of Hobbit that Sméagol and Déagol are in the Lord of the Rings?

Name the movie that this quote is from:
"I am a leaf on the wind - watch how I soar"

Character 1: You can have a nice pile of bananas!
Character 2: Oh, I see, because I'm a monkey I must love bananas!
Character 1: You don't love bananas?
Character 2: Of course I love bananas, I'm a monkey! Don't be ridiculous!

Last week's answers
What does the Doctor say always take to a party? Here is the quote: “Always take a (blank) to a party." Extra points for anyone who names the episode in which it is said.
Answer: A Banana

What are the last spoken lines in Return of the Jedi? (does not include Ewok song)
Answer: "He's my brother?" 
In the sci-fi series Firefly, what is Wash's real name?
Answer: Hoban "Wash" Washburne
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Liebster Award Again.

Click here for today's main post, Trivia Questons and Answers.

Thanks Edessa and Solace for tagging me. Since I have received this award many times and therefore I will just answer the questions I was tagged with and not tag anyone else.

Here are the questions by Edessa at HoloNet Entertainment Daily
1. If you could go anywhere in the world for as long as you'd want to, where would you go?
I have no idea. I am not much a traveling person.

2. What's your least favorite food?
Green beans, peas, butter beans, I absolutely hate them!'

3. Biggest pet peeve?
Anonymous spam comments. I get so many of them it is driving me crazy! I get at least 20-30 comments everyday!

4. What's the best movie and/or video game and/or tv show you've ever watched/played?
Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, absolutely no question nothing is better. Favorite video game, Mass Effect, no video game has its level of emotional investment. Best TV, Doctor Who and Firefly.

5. Do you prefer "junk movies" (movies just for enterainment's sake) or deep, complex ones?
While I occasionally enjoy "junk movies" for just entertainment like the Expendables 2, in general I prefer deeper films with characters that I really connect with like Star Wars, Avengers, and any movie on my Top 100 list.

6. What's one of your most favorite memories?
Going to see the Lord of the Rings trilogy in theaters as a kid. It was one of the reasons why I became a armature film critic. After Star Wars, no film series has effected me more and it was the "Star Wars of my Generation" because it was a big deal going to see it.

7. Where do you see yourself in five years? Ten years?
Working at a place that needs an IT guy I suppose and hopefully still writing this blog.

8. What is your number one fandom?
Star Wars obviously, nothing is better.

9. Would you rather be stranded on a deserted island with Deadpool or Wolverine?
Tough question, Deadpool may randomly decide to kill me for look at him funny, but I have always wanted to talk to Deadpool, he is the best!

10. Describe your room in three words.
Absolutely nothing remarkable.

11. What's your dream job?
Professorial film and video game critic.

Here are the questions by Solace Utara at Prophets of the Force
 My Random Questions
1) What advice would you give children today?
Watch Star Wars.

2) Whom do you consider to be the hero of our generation?
"Heroes, there is no such thing." Depends what you mean by the question. Who do most people consider their "hero" or who I consider my "hero".

3) Have you ever saved someone's life?
Kind of: My father fell asleep at the wheel and woke him up and grabbed the wheel before we drove off a very steep drop, although I also saved my life as well.

4) What was the last song you heard?
Firefly's theme song: "The Ballad of Serenity" aka, best song ever.

5) Where do you go for advice?
My parents.

6) Which countries have you been to?
America and only three states.

7) Would you rather live without your favorite fandom or the internet?
Not a fair question, what is the point of one without the other?

8) What talent would you like to have?
No idea, maybe the ability to write better.

9) What is one thing you would like to change about the past?
Not that I have had a terrible past, but there are a lot of things. I am one of those people who can't stop thinking about my mistakes, even if they are minor.

10) Where does all your money go?
Collage, movie tickets, occasionally video game.

11) What is the most dangerous thing you have ever done?
Not sure, I am not a risk taker by nature.

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Friday, June 28, 2013

Reader's Choice.

Reader's Choice is back and it is time for you to vote for what you want me to post from the choices below.
Firefly/Serenity Review (multipart)
Man of Steel Sequel Villains (2 parts)
Doctor Who: Blink Review
Doctor Who: the Girl in the Fireplace Review
Alien Franchise Review
Stanger than Fiction Review
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly Review
The Big Sleep Review
The Treasure of the Sierra Madre Review
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon Review
Star Wars: The Force Unleashed Review
If you have not read my latest and final part of my Top 100 movies, click here to read it and please comment.  Something to note, that next week I will most likely post a Top 100 movie Update, maybe a review for recently released, Oz the Great and Powerful review, and probably a preview of July's upcoming films by guest author Jordan at RATH'S REVIEWS.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Top 100 Movies: Part 11: 5-1.

Over 100 movies and 11 posts later, here is the final part of my Top 100 Favorite Movies ever made!

At Number 5: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring/Extended Edition
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, the Star Wars of my generation. Does it even require an explanation as to why I love the movie? Even though those with short attention spans might not enjoy it, the Fellowship of the Ring's pacing was perfect for building the world and setting-up the characters, a perfect launching point for second best trilogy of all-time.

At Number 4: The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King/Extended Edition
The final chapter in the most epic trilogy of the 21th Century, The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. Everything built up to this epic finale and it did not disappoint in the slightest. It validated the fantasy genre as a serious genre by winning the Oscar for Best Picture, not even a sci-fi film has done that, unfortunately. 

At Number 3: Star Wars Episode IV: Return of the Jedi
The epic conclusion to the most incredible cinematic experience ever conceived. While some may complain that the Ewoks were out of place, they worked well in the film for me. Jabba Palace rescue is awesome, especially Leia. Luke's epic struggle with the Emperor, Vader, and the Darkside is perfectly symbolized in the final battle. Han and Leia's relationship and characters are further developed and come a fitting end. Just about everything works, it trilogy could not have ended any better. 

At Number 2: Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
Star Wars, the first film in the greatest and most influential franchise of all-time. Basically, Star Wars, created the modern Sci-Fi genre. Sure there was 2001 and Forbidden Planet, but Star Wars made science fiction a legitimate genre. Nothing has been more original than Star Wars, a perfect mix of science fiction and fantasy into a completely new universe. The characters are one of the many keys to the trilogy's greatest because they are so relatable and likeable. No film has influenced me more than Star Wars, without it, I would have never even started this blog.


At Number 1: Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
Hands Down Best Movie Ever Made! It is hard to describe how beyond incredible The Empire Strikes Back is in words. It had an amazing opening, the most shocking plot twist ever, amazing special effects, the best soundtrack ever, outstanding action, and that is not even half of it. It is a true masterpiece of cinema in every sense of the word. There are no flaws in the film, it is the closest thing there ever will be to a perfect film to me. While I am opened minded, the chances that I will ever see a film that surpasses Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back is incredibly slim to none.
While it may seem that the this list is finished, I have two special video tributes planned for the coming weeks and an updated version of the list will be posted in the near future featuring many of my new favorites that I have seen since starting the list and some honorable mentions. Hopefully the first video, featuring mostly films in the top 20, will be posted next week and the other one in the following week with a special challenge.
In a previous post, I asked you, the readers to guess which are my Top 10 Favorite films and the winners are Shena Tokala at Pens, Thespians, and Words and JT at JT's Tales and The Window on the South. Both where quite close and just about everyone guessed that Empire Strikes Back was my favorite since it is kind of obvious. 
What are your thoughts on my list? I hope everyone enjoyed it, look for my video tribute soon.
Here are links to previous parts of the list:
Top 100 Movies: Part 1: 100-91.
Top 100 Movies: Part 2: 90-81.
Top 100 Movies: Part 3: 80-71.
Top 100 Movies: Part 4: 70-61.
Top 100 Movies: Part 5: 60-51.
Top 100 Movies: Part 6: 50-41.
Top 100 Movies: Part 7: 40-31.
Top 100 Movies: Part 8: 32-21.
Top 100 Movies: Part 9: 20-11.

Top 100 Movies: Part 10: 10-6.

A big thanks to everyone for the many comments, feedback and support!

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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Comments: Embedded or Popout: You Decide.

Since I have not changed my blog layout in a while I figured I would try something new and see what everyone thinks. I want you to vote between the embedded comment box, which I have changed to now, and the popout comment box. Because this blog main goal is entertaining you, the reader, I want to know your opinion on this subject. Below are some pros and cons of each comment box type. Also please check back tomorrow for the final part in my Top 100 Movies list. 
Pros: Most commonly used, therefore everyone knows how to use it.
Easy to reply with.
Cons: Must leave main page to comment.
Pros: Do not have to leave main page to comment.
Cons: Often glitchy.
Which one should I use? You decide in the comments and to test out the embedded comment box, I have added temporarily or permanently, depending on the votes.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Lego Movie Trailer Review.

The Lego Movie, a real theatrically released movie about Legos and here is the awesome trailer and Batman is in it! This trailer has a very strong Wreck-It Ralph vibe with all the Lego references. Lego  were my favorite toy when I was a kid and I had a gigantic collection of many of the vintage Legos and anything Star Wars related so this trailer actually makes me very excited. Similar to the reason I enjoyed Wreck-It Ralph so much with all the video game references, The Lego Movie appears to have a ton of Lego references, which is awesome! Normally animated films are not my style, however there seems to be one every year that catches my interest like Wreck-It Ralph did last year, and The Lego Movie will be the animated film for me next year. Something else that makes me excited is that they choose the live-action comedy directing tea, Phil Lord and Chris Miller, who directed 21 Jump Street, which I have not seen. However, making an unconventional like that can really work like  Rich Moore did for Wreck-It Ralph because he had done more adult comedies like the Simpsons. Making a usually adult humor director clean-up his humor often creates a really funny film. The voice cast is spectacular, Chris Pratt, who will star in the upcoming Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy film, is the star of the film and I like what his part from the trailer. Just look at the cast:, Will Ferrell, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett, Liam Nesson, and Morgan Freeman, seriously top notch casting.
What I find kind of funny is that this is the closest thing we are going to get to a Justice League movie with Wonder Woman making her first big screen appearance in Lego form and the first Superman/Batman appearance ever. Batman will be playing a major part in the story, however the aforementioned probably will not.  
When I first heard about the film I expected something akin to the glossy appearance of the cut scenes in the Lego video games, however it surprised me with a stop-motion-animation type style, which is awesome and makes me actually excited. Before I started this blog my brother and I made Lego stop-motion short films, which you can see here, )also please remember that we made most of them 6-7 years ago so the voice acting is rubbish) and the animation style of the trailer looks amazing. Even though it is computer generated, it looks an awful lot like stop motion.
Overall I think the trailer looks great, it should be funny and packed with Lego jokes. Below are some screen caps. So, what did you think of the trailer? Please comment below.
Superman, voiced by Channing Tatum, this will be the first time Superman and Batman are on the big screen.
Wonder Woman's first theatrical appearance and it ends up being just a cameo in Lego form. Will she ever get her know movie or, at least, a Justice League appearance?
 Perfect attention to detail, the broken thing on the helmet is great, because that was always the first thing that broke on those guys.
 Major mistake, the few white guys from NBA All-Stars series were pale, not yellow skinned. Why didn't notice this? I can confirm this because I know them.

Best part of the trailer!
What did you think? Please comment below.
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Monday, June 24, 2013

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (guest post by Jamie)

Here is another guest by my good friend Jamie.

Hey, It's Jamie again! Today I'm going to be reviewing Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, the horror/musical adapted to the screen by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter, along with Alan Rickman. There are several reasons why I wanted to review this movie; it's multi-faceted and you can look at it from many angles. I'm going to start off explaining how I, a sheltered homeschooler, got around to seeing a movie like Sweeney Todd and why I actually enjoyed it. I'll cover the plot, the music and a few of the characters, too. While the film is not for everyone, it was a fascinating piece to view and I hope you will enjoy my post.

Short Plot Summary: The film retells the Victorian melodramatic story of a revenge-seeking Sweeney Todd, a English barber who becomes a serial killer who murders his many of his costumers,  then allows his accomplice, Mrs. Lovett, to process their corpses into meat pies, while he waits for the man who destroyed his family and life to come pay the barber shop a visit....

Warning to Viewers: this film is rated R for graphic bloody violence. I would not recommend anyone under the age of sixteen to view unless you are used to seeing bloody films or have someone there to warn you when to look away if you prefer doing that.
I was maybe fifteen or sixteen when I first crossed paths with Sweeney Todd and it was through the soundtrack. I was in a habit of bringing home a lot of soundtracks from the library to listen to, and one day I picked up Sweeney Todd without realizing it was a musical. However, upon listening to it, I discovered I really liked some of the songs. I managed to paste together the story's idea via the lyrics and pictures in the cd's booklet. Songs like "The Worst Pies In London" "Johanna" "Pirelli's Miracle Elixer" "By the Sea" and of course the vicious "Epiphany" quickly became my favorites and the ones that I re-listened to the most.

It wasn't until this past Spring that I started borrowing darker movies to watch and re-stumbled over the film while making a list of all the Tim Burton and Johnny Depp movies I wanted to see. Because of my recent love of dark Victorian tales and my familiarity with the songs, I got up the courage to borrow the film even with it's R rating. And that's my long journey that led me to finally watch the film.
As I said above, you can look at this movie in different ways. This is the story of a mad man who committed unbelievably cold acts of murder while being completely obsessed with seeing the one man who wronged him suffer his deserved revenge. This is also the story of a once husband and father who lost all that was dear to him and was himself inwardly destroyed and lost all will to live outside of revenge. It's a story where everyone is both a hero and a villain; well, except for Alan Rickman's character, of course. 

When you look at it, it's an extremely dark story with extremely dark elements: lots of murder, rape (alluded to, not shown), cannibalism, ect. To me, the ultimate message of the movie was that revenge, however sweet at the moment, is not healing. Revenge only brings on more death and you end up hurting those you care for most. 
Johnny Depp was amazing. According the special features on the disc, he had never sung before and the first song he ever sang was "My Friends". Even though he's not a professional singer, he did a fabulous job with his songs and really brought out many depths of emotion for his character: broken-heartedness, anger, oily smugness. His acting earns, of course, an A+ from me.
As to my thoughts on Sweeney Todd, or Benjamin Barker, himself: I felt very sorry for him. While there was nothing to excuse his acts of murder, he was actually doing something that made sense to him. Without knowing the message of grace and redemption from Christ, Sweeney could only come to the conclusion that all men deserved die and he was willing to do the job himself. "Emphiny" bring this thought process to life. 

I feel very sorry for Sweeney for how he came to that state; especially when in the flashbacks at the beginning of the film you see that he was once happy. What I did love about Sweeney was how much he loved his wife and daughter even though he had lost them, you can tell he had invested his life into them. So when they were taken, he became like one dead. Overall, he's actually a simple but interesting character who should certainly make you sympathize his plight.
Mrs Lovett was played by Helena Bonham Carter; I've loved her singing voice since I first heard "Worst Pies In London" and I loved seeing her act; she and Johnny make a great couple. A personally side note; I would love to cosplay Mrs Lovett someday because she's a) beautiful b) has a wardrobe that I love (neck line could be higher but besides that) c) she has a fun accent that I can actually manage out when I sing her lines d) I love almost all of her songs and e) I can easily relate to the henchmen role that she has.

As to the character Mrs Lovett herself: she's a great sidekick for Sweeney. You can quickly tell she loves him and wishes he returned her feelings. By the end of the film, however, it's clear that her love is only a selfish love and it doesn't keep her safe around a man like him. As a person, she's rough around the edges, full of good intentions and a horrible cook until she starts using Sweeney's victims in her pies; then, grossly enough, her business picks up. She becomes a mother figure to a orphan who was the servant of Sweeney's first victim and she cares for him very much, showing she has a tender heart afterall. I really like Mrs Lovett and I feel sorry for her too because there was never a chance for Sweeney to return her love.

About eighty percent of this movie is music. While it's not sung all the way through like Les Miserables, the story is carried by song and the use of actual dialogue is a small. The songs themselves all pull together well. The singing feels more natural then the musicals where out-of-the-blue the characters go from talking to doing a musical number in the streets. The characters sing as though it is their way of communicating their emotions and problems to each other. It works for me. Below is opening titles.

Overall: Sweeney Todd: Demon Barber of Fleet Street is a sobering, dark story full of beautiful songs that speak of the depravity of the human race and how it effected one man's life for the worst. This film is not for all. But those who enjoy dark Victorian England, musicals, horror or just the overall world of Tim Burton, should give this film a try if you can stomach the gore that comes with it (or can watch through your fingers like myself). What I took away from the film is that revenge, no matter how sweet, is never the ultimate answer. 

And make sure you know what's in your pie before you take a bite....


Thanks Jamie for another awesome guest review. Be sure to follow her blogs Through Two Blue Eyes! and Fandoms and Films. Please comment and check back tomorrow for my Lego Movie Trailer Review.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Most Accurate Meme Ever: Firefly Addiction.

Over the past month I have been binge watching Joss Whedon's Firefly and I have to say: the show is pure awesomeness and so was the film Serenity! I am now a Browncoat and a big fan of everything about Firefly. Are there any other fans of Firefly reading right now? Hopefully there are and even if not, I have a five part review/discussion about Firefly, its characters and the feature film that concluded the story, most of which will be spoiler-free. I am not sure when I will post it, probably when you vote for it for "Reader's Choice." Also the picture is the most true meme ever, nearly 11 hours of bliss and a lifetime of withdrawal. I watched the series with my brother because we love sci-fi and know we carry on conversations in Firefly quotes, no joke. As requested by Jake P. I am working on a post about possible villains for the Man of Steel sequel, however that is proving to be more difficult than I had anticipated. In other news, I have reached 95 follows! So thanks everyone for the support.
Here are the upcoming posts:
Monday: Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Review (guest post by Jamie)
Tuesday: The Lego Movie Trailer Review
Wednesday: Comments: Embedded or Popout
Thursday: Top 100 Movies Final Part.
 Sorry everyone for the short post, since it is Sunday I decided to do this instead of trivia.
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Saturday, June 22, 2013

Downey Jr Back for Avengers 2 and 3!

 Awesome news Avengers fan, everyone's favorite billionaire, playboy, philanthropist will be back for the Avengers 2 and 3! After some contract dispute, Robert Downey Jr. finally signed on for two more Avengers films. An Iron Man 4 is not in the contract, which is probably a good thing, since the trilogy ended on such a perfect note and The Avengers sequels should be continue his story well. I am not certain if Chris Hemsworth and Jeremy Renner are officially signed on for The Avengers 2, but I am mostly sure Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, and Mark Ruffalo are signed on for The Avengers 2 and many more films. To celebrate this good news, here are some gifs awesome of Tony Stark.



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Friday, June 21, 2013

LOTR: Two Towers: Book Vs Film: Part 5.

Here is the final part of the Lord of the Rings: the Two Towers Book Vs. Film. After I finish the Return of the King I will try and write a similar type post.

     Arguably one of Peter Jackson’s most controversial changes from the book to the film is the scene where Frodo commands Sam to leave his company and return to the Shire on their journey up the Stairs of Cirith Ungol. While, the entire event was moved to the third film, The Return of the King, this had little effect on the actual plot because The Lord of the Rings is one epic story split into three books for marketing purposes. In the book, Frodo and Sam are tricked by Gollum/Smeogal to travel up the Stairs of Cirith Ungol to Shelob’s Lair, where the giant spider named Shelob dwells. After reaching Shelob’s Lair Gollum sneaks away and leaves the Hobbits for Shelob to devour. Frodo and Sam are chased by the spider and Frodo is encapsulated by Shelob’s web and is poisoned by her paralyzing venom. Sam follows close behind and fends off the creature to save Frodo. However, in the movie on the journey up the Stairs of Cirith Ungol, Gollum/Smeogal takes the last piece of Lambas Bread, the Hobbit’s only food, and throws it off the cliff while the Hobbits are sleeping. Additionally, he places crumbs on Sam thus framing him as the culprit. Because of this, Frodo forces Sam to leave and return home since Frodo believes that Sam betrayed him. This is completely out of character for Frodo compared to the book; their friendship is much too strong for Frodo to even consider dismissing Sam. However, this might be due to the more powerful nature of the Ring as previously mentioned. Clearly, in the scene that Frodo is entranced by the power of the One Ring, thus clouding his judgment. The most likely cause for this change is to add drama and suspense when Frodo enters Shelob’s Lair. While the change is somewhat understandable from a film making perspective, it was an unnecessary alteration to Frodo’s character.

      Although devoted fans of The Lord of the Rings books may be annoyed by changes made in the film adaptations, many of these alterations are reasonable. While the books retain their respected position in fantasy literature, the director had to be guided by his goal to produce a suspenseful and visually stunning film. The enormous popularity of the three Lord of the Rings films is ample evidence of his success in this endeavor.
EDIT: Despite what I have said in this series of posts, I would never want any second of The Lord of the Rings films to be changed in the slightest. While I there were parts in the film that could have been adapted more accurately, every change from book has a purpose, regardless of whether "purists" like or not. Peter Jackson created three perfect films that have few if any equals in the 21st Century.   
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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Watchmen (2009) Review.

Note: Since this review was written before I watched Man of Steel, it may refer to it in the future tense. Also please check back tomorrow for Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers Book Vs Film.

Thoughts: Watchmen, directed by Zack Sndyer and based on Alan Moore's legendary graphic novel of the same name. Watchmen is often considered to be one of, if not, the best graphic novel and was the only graphic novel to make Time Magazine's "100 Best Novels." It takes place during an alternate 1980s where Nixon is in a third term and masked vigilantes are either driven into retirement or work for the government, except for one vigilante named Rorschach. The Watchmen graphic novel is known for being a "deconstruction" of superheroes and how flawed heroes would most likely be in the real world and, Dr. Manhattan is the only character with actual powers. To me at least, the importance placed on the themes are a little overrated in that respect. However, the film does not portray those themes nearly as well as the novel. Unlike many comic books, Watchmen is a self-contained story with characters made solely for the story.
Watchmen the film received mixed reviews from critics resulting in a serviceable rating of 64% Rotten, which would seem fairly accurate to the quality of the film.
At the time of watching the movie, I had not read the graphic novel, recently I have and it was an excellent novel, definitely for mature readers only though. Reading the novel made the film better in retrospect. In terms of being an accurate adaptation, Watchmen is kind of mixed. While many of the comic panels were accurately translated to screen, some of the main characters came off as flat and not believably human enough, mostly due to the actor's who played the characters and writing of said characters. Laurie/Silk Spectre was the worst of the group, especially considering her significant amount of screen the character received. Adrian Veidt / Ozymandias was poorly written and acted, *Major Spoiler* the twist of him being the villain was barely a surprise due to his villainess performance. *End Spoiler* Jon/Dr. Manhattan was much better than the other two, but still could have been executed better. Conversely, Rorschach, Nite Owl, and The Comedian, were great characters, accurately transferred to the big screen. Rorschach in particular was the highlight of the film. Nearly all of his scenes were fantastic, it would be great to see an entire Rorschach film. Also there are multiple cuts of the film and I believe I have only seen the original cut (I happened to catch the movie on cable), however, after reading the novel I am more interested in seeing those alternate versions.

Normally I do not fact the content of a film into my review, but Watchmen does contain things that I consider completely unnecessary in terms of overt sexual content, even more so than the graphic novel. Also in scenes taken directly from the novel there were added profanity for no real reason, the dialogue of the novel did contain some profanity, but nearly as much as the movie.

Directed by: Zack Snyder
Genre: Comic Book,
Release Date: March 6, 2009
Running Time: 162 minutes
MMPA rating: R

The Good: Excellent visuals, Translates many panels perfectly to screen, A few cool actions scenes, Looks like the graphic novel, Some social commentary came through the adaptation, Rorschach was awesome, Attention to detail in the sets,

The Bad: More style than substance, Lacks depth of novel, Too much sexual content, Malin Åkerman and Matthew Goode were miscast, Pacing issues, Lacks a human element,

Extreme Warning: Due to the amount of sexual content, the film is only recommended to mature audiences (unless censored). Also the blue guy in the trailer, who is a completely computer generated, Dr. Manhattan is shown to be stark naked throughout most of the film.

Plot: The following plot summary is copied from
The 'Minutemen', a collection of costumed crime fighters, formed in 1938 in response to a rise in costumed gangs and criminals, and the 'Watchmen' similarly form decades later. Their existence in the U.S. has dramatically affected world events: the super powers of Dr. Manhattan (Billy Crudup) help the United States win the Vietnam War, resulting in President Richard Nixon (Robert Wisden) being repeatedly reelected into the 1980s. The existence of Dr. Manhattan gives the West a strategic advantage over the Soviet Union, which by the 1980s threatens to escalate the Cold War into nuclear war. During that time, growing anti-vigilante sentiment in the country leads to masked crime fighters being outlawed. While many of the heroes retire, Doctor Manhattan and the Comedian (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) operate as government-sanctioned agents, and Rorschach (Jackie Earle Haley) continues to operate outside the law.
Watch the movie to see what happens next.

Plot: 7.3/10- As stated previously, some of what made the novel great does come through in the film, other aspects fall flat. Pacing is probably the biggest issue. It really dragged in a few areas, in retrospect however, the pacing was not a big problem if you have read the novel. The mystery was intriguing but it was not terribly difficult to figure out.

Action: 7.4/10- In typical Zack Sndyer fashion, the action is stylized, bloody and brutal, using a lot of slow-motion effect. My main criticism is that there could have been more action, because what is there is fantastic and even better than Sndyer's previous film 300.

Acting: 6.4/10- Jackie Earle Haley kills it as Rorschach. Easily the best performance and aspect of the film. Most of his scenes were the highlight of the film. Patrick Wilson as Daniel Dreiberg / Nite Owl was great in his role, the second best performance of the cast. In his limited role, Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Edward Blake / The Comedian did an excellent job at bring his character to life. Billy Crudup as Jon/ Dr. Manhattan was neither good nor bad in his role, he was decent. Matthew Goode as Adrian/ Ozymandias was miscast, his performance was far too over-the-top. Malin Åkerman as Silk Spectre was poorly miscast. Her performance was noticeably weak throughout the film. The other cast members were fine but nothing special.

Special effects: 8.2/10- As with any Zack Sndyer film, the special effects were spectacular! Even a few years since its release, the effects are still effective. The attention to detail in the set design is excellent, most sets appear to be taken directly from the page. In general the character's costume look fine, although some of them have a cheap, almost corny look to a few of them, which can be off-putting to some viewers.

Soundtrack: 7.0/10- Watchmen soundtrack consists of many licensed, most of which are from the 80s. Some viewers may fine this the choice of music odd, and I normally dislike songs during serious films, but it worked well within the context of the film.

Comedy: 4.9/10- Watchmen is certainly not a comedy, however Rorschach's remakes are great and humorous in a dark and twisted way, similar to Clint Eastwood in his earlier films.

Would I Watch This Again: After reading the graphic novel I do need to watch the "Ultimate Cut" of the film.

Before Reading Novel Rating: 6.2/10- Due to the slow pacing and other issues the film is decent but never reached its full potential.

After Reading Novel Rating: 7.7/10- Even though the novel is superior because it has so much more time to develop the story and characters, reading the novel makes me appreciate the attention to detail of adapting the film, particularly in the visual sense. Usually reading the book a film was based on makes said film worse, however it makes a subpar movie better than it would have been otherwise.

Closing comments: For those who enjoyed the movie and have never read the graphic novel, it is highly recommended that you do so, however both the film and novel are intended for mature audiences only.

Recommended for *Mature*: Comic Book fans, Zack Sndyer fans,

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Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Trailer Review.

Note: For some reason this was posted twice, must be some kind of glitch.
Before I start the trailer review, sorry everyone for not commenting, replying to e-mails, or posting yesterday, I had unexpected medical problems so I was in the hospital yesterday making sure I did not have to have my appendix removed. Fortunately it was nothing majorly serious, I will just be sick for a few days. Sometime next week I will post the final part to my Top 100 movies, hopefully something will not get in the way again.
If there is one thing that this trailer shows, it is that there are Elves, lots of Elves. Did Peter Jackson forget the film was named "The Hobbit"? Because it appears to a movie mostly about Elves. Obviously this is not going to be true, but that is what the trailer wants you to think. I am not complaining though, Elves are awesome; it is still odd regardless. Maybe Jackson is trying to appeal more to mainstream, since most people like Elves. An Unexpected Journey was fantastic, albeit slightly disappointing considering how perfect The Lord of the Rings trilogy is, but still ranking 8th on my favorite films list. Hopefully Desolation of Smaug will surpass its predecessor, and I hope Peter Jackson is sure not to show the 48fps version to critics so the film can receive the positive reviews it deserves.
Legolas coming back is not a surprise, however I had assumed that he would be in a more cameo role but it appears that his role will be much more akin to Gollum. Adding Tauriel seems like an odd move by Peter Jackson, from what I remember from reading the books, there were no major or even named characters added from the book, or at least from Tolkien's extra writing. The only reason I see is that he wants to add a female character to the mostly male centric cast. Despite this, Tauriel looks like a cool character and Evangeline Lilly  will be a very attractive elf. There are rumors that one of the dwarves might have a romance with an elf, but those are just rumors. One more thing, the trailer music was epic! It was costume track by Audiomachine especially for the trailer; unfortunately it has not been released by itself. Here are JT's thoughts.

JT: I agree with you there James. I was not surprised by other details but there were too many elven shots. For those who don't know, The Desolation of Smaug movie is based on approximately chapters 5-12. It ends right before the clinax but there is a lot packed into the end that will make a third movie. Needless to say, Elves don't figure nearly as much as Jackson would like them too. Dare I say "Sellout to the fangirls!" (apologies to the fangirls. I know you didn't need Tauriel to like this movie.)

JT: The Dwarves have arrived at Lake-town. If you spent time memorizing their harstyles, you know exactly which dwarves you can see.
JT: That is Mirkwood , It is way more heavily detailed than it needed. I think WETA was having too much fun here.
James: Ever since Legolas was said to be from Mirkwood, I have been curious about how different the Elves culture are compared to the others.  
JT: That is not my image of Thranduil at all. I always saw him as an Old king Cole/Robin Hood and his merry men type. Anybody notice that his eyebrows are brown? Fail. Basically everything about him is messed up, even the moose-riding.
James: Well, Thranduil does look like he could be Legolas' father, the resemblance is quite strong, although a wig and makeup are probably the main reason. 
James: Thorin looks like he has fought some spiders and he appears a tad angry, wonder why? It's not like the guy hung-him-out-to-dry when his people needed his help. 
JT: Wait, James what are you trying to say exactly? I can't elaborate because i know all the spoilers.

JT: Barrels out of Bond! Though how in Middle-earth are they going to pull off getting away w/ the top off the barrels? wait and see...
James: This is a much talked about part of the book and where everyone thought the first film would end before it was split into a trilogy.
JT: Best shot!
JT: Is that Azog attacking Tauriel? I predict girl power defeats the zombie orc.
James: Interesting thought about Tauriel killing Azog. It would only seem right that Azog would be offed near the end of the film so that Smaug is the main villain for the final chapter.
James: Legolas seems more angry and maybe slightly more manly. He has some weird expressions in the trailer.
James: Seriously, why so much of the Elves talking, did Bilbo and any dwarf other than Dwalin even have a single line?

James: Tauriel looks like a very cool Mirkwood archer, there certainly seems to be a lot archers in the movies lately.

JT: Two lines: We don't need her, and she's being Lego's girlfriend despite press releases to the contrary. Phooey on you PJ!
James: She may very well be Legolas'

James: Grumpy cat Legolas! I need to ad captions and create a meme! See the rebalance, he looks just like Grumpy cat. 

JT: The hoard of Smaug! Or Thorin, depending on who's side you're on...:D And this isn't nearly half.
James: According to Ford Smaug is richest character in fiction, so there was to be a several tons of gold!

JT: Gandalf at Dol Goldur. He looks scared, but then, you only live twice, and his time hasn't come yet.
James: One of the only frames of Gandalf in the trailer. I know Gandalf leaves the Dwarves company and only Tolkien's extra writing chronicles what happens.

James: The effects for Azog look great, although nothing can match Andy Serkis as Gollum.

James: Finally some Bilbo, the movie is named "The Hobbit" after all.
James: Luke Evens, aka, guy who looks a lot like Orlando Bloom from the Pirates trilogy.
JT: His character is Bard the Bowman, and he shows up in Laketown. He actually looks just how I imagined him.

James: Several scenes of awesome action! Desolation of Smaug appears to have even more action than its predecessor.

JT: O Bloom is the good guy again (or before)!

JT: Smaug is a fail. He looks like a picture transplanted from a poorly drawn 2D version...
James: Hopefully Smaug will look better in the film, the effects should be much better.

What are your thoughts on the trailer? Please comment below. Also Middle Earth fans, check back Friday for The Two Towers: Book Vs. Film final part and tomorrow for my Watchmen review.

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