Reviews

‘Ambulance’ Review

Nobody sticks to their roots more than Michael Bay. Love him or hate him, you have to respect his craft and Ambulance is one of his best films from start to finish. A wild ride with energetic performances from Jake Gyllenhaal and YayahAbdul-Mateen elevate this movie to exciting heights.

Two robbers steal an ambulance after their heist goes awry.

Sometimes you just need certain directors in your life. Enter Michael Bay and all the stuff that comes with it. I knew going into Ambulance, it was at least going to be entertaining as hell, but what I didn’t expect was just how much I was going to enjoy this movie. I think from the very get-go, if the two leads are played by lesser actors, this movie is actually a complete and utter dumpster fire. That’s not the case and there is serious star power at play here and it truly propels the movie forward at all times. Gyllenhaal is outstanding here giving such a unique, fun and over the top performance that it could only belong in a Michael Bay movie.

In a world where we have come to appreciate the Bayhem, the Bayisms, and everything else that comes with a Michael Bay movie. Well he found a new toy to play with while filming, drones. The amount of drone shots in this is staggering. At first it comes across as a pretty inventive and awesome concept, then you are almost laughing at the amount of drone footage used here. It works for the most part, but it got washed up towards the end of the movie.

A little Heat, a little Fast and Furious. A great heist to kick off the madness of the movie, followed by a 90 min chase scene in an ambulance and that’s where another Michael Bay trope is introduced, the bombshell (Eiza Gonzalez). She plays Cam, one of the best paramedics in the city of LA, but she lacks heart. A stone cold worker, who doesn’t really appreciate the work she actually does. Once she drops her patients off, that’s it and her relationship with co-workers have made her an unappealing co-pilot in the ambulance. So when she’s tasked with trying to save a cop who has been fatally wounded while trying to stay alive, her character gets a chance to grow and develop. For once it felt like the Michael Bay hottie actually had a story arc and something to do. He’s learning!

The film flows really well, you’re hooked in immediately with everything. They don’t mess around, they just throw you into the thick of it and wasted no time to get the action going. From start to finish this is one of the strongest Bay films in recent memory. Almost returning to what made him successful to begin with. When he’s paired with a terrific cast, his films can be good! He’s just such a hit or miss director and has almost become a parody of himself at times. Ambulance could be the launching pad for a Bay run here and I’m here for it. This just felt like an old school movie, a smaller budget heist film is something we don’t get often.

In a world full of comic book movies, sequels, spin-offs, prequels, reboots. It’s just refreshing to get some original IP and a fun ride. Seeing this in IMAX was awesome and it really gripes you from the very get-go. We need more Bayhem in our lives and I can’t stress enough how much fun Gyllenhaal was. Go see it on a big screen, grab some snacks and just enjoy the wild ride. I just love movies like this so much.

Ambulance = 81/100

Reviews

‘Sonic 2’ Review

In a world full of horrible video game movie adaptations, we now have perhaps the best one to grace the big screen. Sonic 2 is a worthy sequel that delivers on everything Sonic, introducing Tails and Knuckles, who are both standouts in the movie.

Sonic and Tails Team Up in the 'Sonic 2' Trailer

When the manic Dr Robotnik returns to Earth with a new ally, Knuckles the Echidna, Sonic and his new friend Tails is all that stands in their way.

Who would have guessed, that after that first Sonic teaser trailer 4 years ago we would be here. Not saying fans should complain about everything, but it worked and not only did they change the design of the titled character, we know and love, but that changed the landscape and outcome for the movie. In recent memory, I can’t recall a franchise that has benefited more from fan outrage, and it was all acceptable because that original design for Sonic was so bad, this sequel simply would not exist if they didn’t do something about it.

Now, let’s discuss this amazing time at the movies shall we? Sonic 2 picks up a little after the events on the first film. Eggman is on the Mushroom planet, where he is about to try and get home when he bumps into everyones favourite Sonic character, Knuckles (Idris Elba). I’ll start by saying, good for Idris Elba for stepping up and doing this. Not only does he do such a good job voice acting for Knuckles, but Knuckles is arguably the best part of the movie. He reminded me a lot of Drax from GOTG, because of how stupid they made him. Not dumb, but just so innocently stupid that it made everything he said so funny. He has some of the best jokes in the entire movie and that’s saying a lot considering he was sharing the screen with Jim Carrey for most of it. Congrats to Jim for having the biggest box-office opening of his career with Sonic 2, which is crazy to say/think about. He plays Robotnik perfect once again, and in the 3rd act he truly shines as the world class villain. The definition of a scene stealer, they couldn’t have picked a better person for the role. Let’s hope he puts on that stash once more for the 3rd movie (which is coming).

Growing up for me, there was Batman and Robin, Aliens and Predators and Sonic and Tails. I’m so happy that they let this friendship blossom on the big screen, because they have one of the best video game relationships of all time and seeing it come to life was special. Tails (Colleen O’Shaughnessey) is reserved and has been watching Sonic from afar for quite some time. Much like his pal Sonic, he feels alone in the universe and just wants a friend. That message is at the heart of the movie, friendship and what it’s like to feel alone. Sonic (Ben Schwartz) has his “family” but he needs someone more his speed. Enter Tails and they immediately hit it off. Tails is just so cute and adorable, and the connection he shares with Sonic propels the movie forward in a organic and fluid way.

I can’t fail to mention the human characters in the movie, the Wachowski’s (James Marsden & Tika Sumpter) who are doing their best to raise Sonic like a normal child. We have the sister in law Rachel (Natasha Rothwell), who is the main component in the human side of things because she’s getting married in Hawaii. The humans have to be in the movie, but it felt like two movies going on at the same time, and we all know which one is the one we want. For the next outing I would dump the nonsensical human element and solely focus on Sonic and his new friends. We don’t need them and it clearly bogs down the film and that’s why a movie that was 2 hours could have easily been 90 mins. You don’t feel the run time but the humans are always just there and could have been scrapped all together. This isn’t a diss but we all just want more Sonic, Tails and Knuckles!

That’s how you make the next adventure truly great. Cut down on the humans, and focus a lot more on the Sonic lore and maybe even have them go off planet. We have seen all sorts of worlds in the video games and maybe it’s time for Sonic and his new pals to take a field trip.

Sonic 2 = 82/100

Reviews

‘Morbius’ Review

Jared Leto tries his best to save what can only be described as a forgettable and unwatchable comic book flick.

Morbius review: Jared Leto plays himself in a bloody quick time event - The  VergeBiochemist Michael Morbius tries to cure himself of a rare blood disease, but he inadvertently infects himself with a form of vampirism instead.

So we were all sky-high after watching The Batman. For weeks on end it ruled the box-office and the world. So we were all on a roll when Morbius came into our lives. I can’t believe that I saw this movie so I could sit here and write a review that about 5 people will read (thank you!). But here we are, in a world post Morbius and things seem duller than ever. I can’t believe we are still trying to make movies like this, that end up doing well enough at the box-office that we could quite possibly see a Morbius 2 down the line……

After seeing the movie, it was painfully obvious that a lot of this was left on the cutting board and there was a ton of reshoots. Including the last two post credit stingers, that set up something that nobody asked for and that nobody wants? From the very first images we saw and trailer, a lot of that stuff didn’t even make it into the final edit of the movie. Postponed time and time again, the movie never got the momentum it needed to be successful.

The story is simple really, Morbius (Jared Leto) has been dealing with a rare blood condition his entire life. A brilliant mind, yet a fragile body, he spends his entire life trying to find a cure. With help from his friend Milo (Matt Smith) he is able to successfully combine bat DNA with his own, but no without a price. Morbius turns into a monster that can only be controlled with either human blood or the stuff of his own creation, artificial blood. When he can no longer control the beast inside him, the FBI steps in, and thats where we are introduced to Agent Simon Stroud (Tyrese). Who immediately felt like his role and purpose in the movie was severely cut down. He just felt rushed in and almost like background noise. The movie never gets on its feet and takes off. It feels so all over the place, never leaning into one direction, making for a very sloppy experience. Bleak and one dimensional characters, rushed plot and some messy CGI, make Morbius one of the worst comic book movies in recent memory.

Feeling like one long preview and trailer for those two post credit scenes, that promises this character will team up with some other bad guys to take down Spider-Man. Not knowing which Spider-Man they are referring to, making the last scene in the movie seem even more unbelievable. A truly interesting character that could have severed better alongside a character like Blade and made more of the first antagonist of his first movie. Morbius isn’t someone you have drive the car, he could make a perfectly fine passenger who could help just an okay movie, turn into something worth while. Sony just doesn’t have the slightest clue what to do with these Spider-Man side characters. They got so lucky with Venom being the hit it was, but even the sequel felt rushed and they messed up Carnage. So thinking Morbius could be the new Venom was such a false narrative to begin with, almost making meeting expectations for the movie impossible to reach from the very get-go.

I’m just tired of movies that feel like a launching pad only for future movies that we will probably never see, because you need a solid foundation in order to build anything on top of it and this foundation is shaky as hell. Focus on the here and now and not the future. With movies like Kraven the Hunter coming out, it seems like it will have the same fate, and that’s a mistake. These are great characters that should be flushed out and have an effect on the comic book landscape and not turned into a laughing stock.

Skip it. I wish I had.

Morbius = 24/100

Reviews

‘The Batman’ Review

The definitive Batman movie is upon us. A neo-noir detective story for the ages, reminiscent of Zodiac and Seven. Full of beautiful cinematography, and one heck of a performance by Robert Pattinson.

The Batman' review: Robert Pattinson shines in Matt Reeves' dark take on the Dark Knight | CNN

When the Riddler, a sadistic serial killer, begins murdering key political figures in Gotham, Batman is forced to investigate the city’s hidden corruption and question his family’s involvement.

After 5 viewings, I think I’m finally ready to talk about The Batman. Truly a movie for the ages. After five long years, a pandemic, release dates being moved. The Batman has finally arrived and it some how exceeded all of my expectations. Expectations that have never been higher for a movie, which, to say the least is a little unjust and unfair, but when you love Batman as much as I do, it’s hard to resist. This is everything I’ve ever wanted to see in a Batman movie, from the character himself, Gotham City, his fellow rogues gallery, and how the universe was built. This is a perfect blend between realism and fantastical, a perfect mesh of the animated series and the Arkham video games. Two of the greatest iterations we have ever seen from the character. Sprinkle in a little Scott Snyder New 52 Comics run and we have without a doubt in my mind the best Batman movie to ever exist.

It’s year two and Batman has become a nocturnal animal. His entire life is dedicated to the Batman. He thrives on being “vengeance” and striking fear in all the criminals of Gotham, even if he can’t be everywhere at once. As days and weeks mush together like one long acid trip, Batman uses camera contact lenses and journaling to record and keep track of everything that is happening around him. A cool idea that makes his detective work easier on the mind and lets us realize further that this iteration of Batman is always the smartest guy in the room.

Written and directed by the great Matt Reeves. A fan of the character, which you can tell from the first 10 minutes of the movie, that this is a man who understands Batman. From the narration by Pattinson at the start and end of the film, leading into the first appearance of the character, as he describes himself as being “the shadows” of Gotham. Matt Reeves has crafted a euphoric experience for the hardcore Batman fan. Subtle teases, Easter eggs and references galore gives us such a vast array of characters and what’s to possibly come for The Batman.

Greg Fraser (cinematographer), who is fresh off Dune, bring us arguably the most cinematic and beautiful comic book movie we have ever seen. The cinematography is at the highest of highs with every single shot practically picture perfect. POV shots, wide frame and the aesthetics throughout the movie, make this not only just a great looking comic book movie, but movie in general. Gotham City comes to life as a dreary, rainy, grimy and gothic city. That feels forever dirty and hopeless and becomes a character in itself during the duration of the movie. Gotham City is just as important as Batman when crafting a great story. Something that has lacked in recent Batman outings, but not here. You know you’re in Gotham the entire time, and it’s a depressing place. Somewhere you would find a grown man in a bat costume lurking in the shadows. When he appears on screen and Michael Giacchino’s epic and haunting score hits, it sends chills down your body. Batman is no stranger to having a beautiful scores, but this whole ensemble truly is one for the record books.

Everyone and I mean everyone is acting their ass off in this movie. From Jeffery Wright’s Jim Gordon, who has such an interesting relationship with Batman. The buddy-cop routine between them is something we haven’t really seen before. They have so much time together on screen, solving cases and bouncing ideas off one another. One thing I loved, he was constantly refer to Batman as “man” like they are pals. He understood what he stood for and the more the movie went on, the more of his fellow officers understood why Jim was so close to Batman. Zoe Kravitz gives a memorable and electric Catwoman performance. Serving as not just the love interest, but a vital role in the story being told. She’s able to help Batman with his detective work and makes him realize that you need to expand your circle sometimes. Paul Dano and Colin Farrell act as our villains here. Riddler and Penguin respectfully. The more I watched the movie, the more Riddler grew on me. He’s a nut job, at the end of the day, most Batman villains are broken people with broken minds, and that’s exactly what we got from Paul Dano and his Riddler. He’s a full blown psychopath, and they are always the most dangerous bad guys. There’s a great scene where Batman is interrogating Riddler and he’s so frustrated because he can’t lay his hands on him and you can see his rage and frustrations. The Riddler has outsmarted him and Batman is realizing sometimes your fists can’t solve every problem in Gotham.

Penguin is one of the best parts of the movie. He’s basically involved in the best two scenes of the movie. One at the Ice Berg Lounge, the club that he runs. Even Batman going to the Ice Berg Lounge was so cool to see in live action, and Penguin was just perfect. Farrell is unrecognizable and he deserves a ton of praise for what he does. Funny, smart, cunning, and looking to be the biggest mobster in Gotham. The best scene in the movie, a horror esque Batmobile highway chase scene. We don’t see the Batmobile until about half way through the movie. When that engine revs up, it’s giving Christine vibes, Stephen Kings famous killer car a run for it’s money. It’s loud and it’s intimidating as heck. What follows is an all-timer chase sequence where Reeves and Fraser truly deliver something remarkable.

Now for the reason we are all here, Batman. Robert Pattinson, that man was born to play this particular iteration of Batman. Everything about his performance is thought out. The way he walks, the way he turns, the way he makes eye contact with certain people. How his cape moves, the way he uses his gadgets, how he fights. It’s all so strong, and mechanically beautiful. Rob just felt like Batman, the way he talks, his relationship with both Gordon and Alfred. The use of rain and the sounds of Batman’s boots walking is so flawlessly executed here. He’s a cowboy in a Western, but they are used to let people know the boogeyman is coming. When we first see Batman, it’s like a horror movie villain popping out for the first time. Very Jason and Michael Meyers, where you know he’s coming, you can hear him, but it’s to late to run now. Batman was treated so differently here than any movie prior. All these small details that you wouldn’t think could contribute to a Batman movie, that actually elevate it to new levels. It’s hard to put into words how I feel about Rob and what he accomplished. I smiled my ass off even the fifth time I saw the movie. He just has moments where I’m like “THAT’S BATMAN.” Some of those moments are seconds long, some are minutes, but one thing is for sure, he is the new definitive Batman. From the first person he saves to the last, his arc comes full circle and it’s heartwarming and emotional to see. From the citizens of Gotham asking Batman not to hurt them after saving them, to a little boy reaching for his hand in darkness. He just felt so raw. It’s only been 2 years, he isn’t peaked. He’s still afraid of heights, makes mistakes and honestly at times, gets beat up a little bit.

My only true gripe with the movie. Not enough Alfred. Andy Serkis is fantastic, but he has maybe 10 minutes of screen time? I think he had a busy schedule during the making of this and it’s something I need more of in the sequel. He’s a brilliant detective and it appears that he trained Bruce in a lot of ways growing up. Couldn’t write all this without mentioning Alfred!

The Batman takes a place on the Mount Rushmore of movies for me. For so many reasons. For what it stands for, what it accomplished and what’s to come within this universe that Reeves has created.

I left the movie time and time again wondering why Jim Gordon shined that bright light into the sky and what adventure Batman will get up to next.

Score 98/100

News

‘Bullet Train’ Trailer

Brad Pitt is on a high speed train confronting all sorts of deadly assassins in a game of cat and mouse. Count me all the way in.

Bullet Train (2022) - IMDb

Sometimes you watch a trailer and realize 30 seconds in that you’ll be there opening weekend. This movie kind of has it all. Star power, stylish action and a premise that certainly never fails in Hollywood. A group of assassins in close quarters fighting amongst one other is always a recipe for success.

Directed by the action heavy David Leitch who is always trying to one up himself with each new movie. He certainly is bringing in a star-studded cast to hunt each other down. Pitt seems perfect for this kind of movie, he’s a complete bad ass but also seems like a sweet heart. I’m going to kill you but I don’t want to do it kind of guy.

This is just a small taste of whats to come for Bullet Train, guns, fists and swords? It’s just going to be straight up cool, a unique movie in it’s own right. It shoots up the list of my most anticipated that’s for sure.

Miss seeing Brad Pitt in movies and the fact we will see him like never before is the only excuse I need to go see this movie.

Reviews

The History of Batman

With The Batman arriving shortly, I’m running down every Batman theatrical release since 89. Prepping my mind and body for the ultimate experience that is about to happen. The world is truly not ready for what’s about to go down in The Batman.

Some say there’s never been a “bad” Batman movie. Well, those were the exact words out of the newest member of the Bat-family, Robert Pattinson. He’s on record saying that he’s seen every Batman movie in theatres and that he thinks every Batman movie had a time and place and they all serve their own purpose in one way or another. I tend to agree to some degree, so that’s why I decide to run the gauntlet of Batman movies and see for myself. Starting with the only cartoon movie to make the list Batman: Mask of The Phantasm.

Batman: Mask of The Phantasm. Release Date: December 25th, 1993. Director: Eric Radomski & Bruce Timm. Box-Office: 5.6 Million.

The best Batman movie that no one has seen? This cartoon iteration, a spawn of the iconic and beloved Batman The Animated Series, tells the tale of Batman’s origin and the first and only love of his life. While showcasing the present day adventures of the Dark Knight. For a cartoon this movie explores mature themes and even feels like a mature movie.

When Bruce Wayne and Batman both get a blast from the past, they scramble to put the pieces of the puzzle that is his life together to help save Gotham and the woman he once loved Andrea Beaumont. Chasing a new threat in town, The Phantasm, they are picking off crime lords one by one, and making it seem like Batman is behind these crimes. We know Batman doesn’t kill, especially in the cartoons, debate the killing thing all you want. When his Bat life and personal life finally come to blows, he must decide what he ultimately wants in his life.

From his origin days, Bruce wanted nothing more than to strike fear in the criminals in Gotham and try to save the city. Until he almost gave up that life for Andrea. It’s a theme that is rarely explored, Batman giving up the mantle for a woman or for anything really. I love this movie because how the exploration of both Batman’s psyche and Bruce Wayne’s. Sprinkle in a little Joker action and we have an amazing Batman story on our hands. One of the best ones ever told through film and something the biggest Batman fans hold close to their heart.

A story that could work so well in live action and perhaps something we could get one day. It’s a reminder of how powerful the animated series was, and how ahead of its time it was. A flawless work of animation and Batman lore that was the launching pad for so many Batman stories and how the character was handled going forward. It was a total game changer and something I will continue to watch and rewatch for the rest of my life.

Score = 93/100

Batman. Release Date: June 19th, 1989. Director: Tim Burton. Box-Office: 411.6 Million

That New Michael Keaton Batman Rumor Just Got Debunked | Cinemablend

The Dark Knight of Gotham City begins his war on crime with his first major enemy being Jack Napier, a criminal who becomes the clownishly homicidal Joker.

Gotham City should almost feel like a character itself. That’s one thing Burton had down, the aesthetics of Gotham City and just how dull, dreary and gloomy it can be. Gotham should also feel timeless, in the sense you could watch it at any time and never truly know what era the movie takes place in. Burtons Batman movies have by far the best Gotham aspects and it’s one thing I’m really looking forward to in The Batman. Gotham feels like it has a personality and a real identity as it should. The city almost makes the people living in it, so it only makes sense to have it represent the evil that dwells within it.

A booming soundtrack, an epic and emotional score, a wicked Bat-Mobile, pieces were here, and everything just clicked into place for this movie. Some how it just always feels like it’s missing something. Whether that’s one big action fight scene, there are a few sprinkled in, but nothing that knocks your socks off, or that just Batman as cool as he is, can’t truly come out of his shell, because he’s held back by filming. Burton was in his heyday but technically comic book movies just aren’t what they can be now, they did the best they could, but at the end of the day, it’s what holds this film back.

Score = 84/100

Batman Returns. Release Date: June 19th, 1992. Director: Tim Burton. Box-Office: 266 MillionRoad To 'Batman V Superman': 'Batman Returns' | Monkeys Fighting Robots

While Batman deals with a deformed man calling himself the Penguin wreaking havoc across Gotham with the help of a cruel businessman, a female employee of the latter becomes the Catwoman with her own vendetta.

What a sequel. It really changed so many things. You know who hated this movie? Moms. Thanks a lot Moms. Well, them and McDonald’s, apparently they had a hard time selling Happy Meals with the toy line from this movie. Maybe that’s why this movie made like no money?

Which is hard to believe, because some days, I think this could be my favourite Batman movie ever made. At times it certainly feels like the most “Batman” influence movie we have ever gotten. Burton ups the aesthetics with the sequel. Everything is bigger and brighter, the sets are more grandeur. We get some of the most iconic comic book performances across the board. Keaton returns has the Dark Knight, but Danny DeVito and Michelle Pfeiffer really steal the show. This is a dark and intense movie, and their performances match the tone perfectly. Pfeiffer’s transformation scene into Catwoman is one of the single best moments from any Batman movie. She’s tortured and just wants to find someone in her life, and when she finally does, she’s too broken to accept that good things can happen to her. As for DeVito, his take on Penguin certainly doesn’t get talked about enough. He’s immersed in the character and no one is really hamming it up here, this is all taken pretty seriously and that’s why for me, it works so well.

Even the already boisterous score is taken to another level, with such emotion behind it, that it elevates the movie. From the very get-go you understand that Burton is taking Batman and his entire world very seriously. Much like the movie that came before it, the only thing that holds it back, is the time it was made. The action does feel bigger, but this is a character driven story, not something that relies and leans on huge fights and non-stop action.

They always had plans to continue with Keaton, Burton and possibly even Pfeiffer, but something changed and it is one of the biggest what if’s in my mind. They wanted to cross over with Superman and potentially bring in Johnny Depp as Scarecrow. Now that’s a movie I needed to see.

The biggest question. Is Batman Returns a Christmas movie?

Score = 90/100

Batman Forever. Release Date: June 16th, 1995. Director: Joel Schumacher. Box-Office: 336 Million

Batman must battle former district attorney Harvey Dent, who is now Two-Face and Edward Nygma, The Riddler with help from an amorous psychologist and a young circus acrobat who becomes his sidekick, Robin.

Keaton, out. Kilmer, in Burton, out. Schumacher, in. Talk about a tonal shift. We had the grand gothic aesthetics of Burton’s Gotham City. Enter a new neon Gotham, were jokes are a plenty and everything just seems a little more fun. There’s so much happening in this movie, introducing a new Batman as well as a massive shift in tone, it made this movie hard to swallow for fans.

This movie gets a ton of flack, but overtime fans and myself have grown to appreciate this for what it is. Val Kilmer actually looks pretty great in the cape and cowl. He also makes a fantastic Bruce Wayne. Exploring more of his psyche and the grief he carries with the death of his parents. Exploring the mental side to both of his identities with something not previously seen with Keaton. He certainly isn’t the problem with this movie, in fact Batman is the most serious aspect of the entire film. The problems lies elsewhere, starting with the villains that are so over the top and corny, it makes it very difficult to take them seriously. Especially coming off the grounded and serious performances of Catwoman and Penguin. Even when it tries to be serious, it just ends up falling flat on its face.

Enter Tommy Lee Jones as Two-Face, and just from the get-go his entire demeanour and performance don’t sit right with me. One of his strongest foes belittled and made into almost a cruel joke. On the other side of that coin we get the Riddler. Now, Jim Carrey does a weird job here. He’s hamming it up so much here, that again, it’s hard to take this performance seriously. At the end of the day though, he’s by far the superior villain of the film. Once he gets into his iconic green costume I feel like his performance does seem elevated. Just the mixture of these two classic villains doesn’t mesh well, making the pairing odd to say the least.

Now the biggest addition to the mix. Chris O’Donnell as Dick Grayson. It would have been hard to tackle Robin as a young boy, but making Robin apart of this story, feels rushed and forced. Although his “origin” is perhaps the best part of the whole movie. The one scene that feels the closest to the previous two movies. He’s not terrible, just needed one more solo Batman movie first. If this were now, I feel like the Robin stuff would have come at the end of the film and not in the beginning. There was already so much going on and the addition of Robin is over kill. Toss in the forever horny Chase Meridian (Nicole Kidman) and now it’s a real party.

There’s an alternative cut of this somewhere out there. A more serious and dark film. The “Schumacher Cut” is something fans want and something I want to see. Additional scenes and a more serious tone, is something that could turn this already acceptable Batman movie into something great?

Score = 66/100

Batman & Robin. Release Date: June 22nd, 1997. Director: Joel Schumacher. Box-Office: 238 Million.Batman & Robin' screenwriter apologises: "We didn't mean for it to be bad"

Batman and Robin try to keep their relationship together even as they must stop Mr. Freeze and Poison Ivy from freezing Gotham City.

There’s only so many puns a man can handle. Regarded as the worst and weakest Batman film to date, this movie is kind of a train wreck. But in a way that you really cant take your eyes off of it. We get another man wearing the cape and cowl, none other than George Clooney himself, and boy does it seem like he doesn’t give a shit. The man didn’t even do a Batman voice. Kilmer held up his end of the bargain and gave us a decent portrayal of both Batman and Bruce Wayne. Where Clooney gives us a bland and forgettable performance, it’s not great.

Piggybacking off the vibe and tone of Forever, they double down with the neon lights, more puns and some just god awful dialogue. Most of that awful dialogue comes from the legend himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger as Mr. Freeze. If only the last two Batman movies before Nolan stepped in would have taken their villains seriously, we could have had some decent movies on our hands. Freeze is a joke, making even his powers the means for jokes. When in all reality, he can be a tortured and compassionate villain who the audience could have sympathy with. He’s terrible but doesn’t take the cake. That honour befalls on Bane. Yelling words and breaking down doors, once again a fascinating and iconic Batman villain turned into a literal punch line. Bane the strategic mastermind, combat extraordinaire, merely a juiced out man, who says maybe 10 words? Uma Thurman comes in with an okay-ish take on Poison Ivy, who just seems to hot to handle. She’s just lame. Why these movies insisted on having some cooky plots and gullible schemes, it’s just laughable the whole way through.

You can have a good time with this movie, but cringe finds it’s way throughout the entire runtime. Like, they play hockey and have skates popping out of their Batman Boots. You will never ever see these things in another Batman movie for as long as you live. You almost appreciate how a studio wanted something like this, and compare it to what we are about to receive and it’s quite insane. Poor casting and terrible story is a recipe for disaster, but there is something about these Schumacher movies that feel good. The campiness runs deep, but maybe that’s the point? He tried something and for moments it can work, but overall the lack of talent in front of the camera is what holds these back.

I can’t wait for the Mr. Freeze redemption tour when he appears in the Reeves trilogy.

Score = 33/100

Batman Begins. Release Date: June 15th, 2005. Director: Christopher Nolan. Box-Office: 373 Million.

Watch Batman Begins | Netflix

After training with his mentor, Batman begins his fight to free crime-ridden Gotham City from corruption.

Wow, when you see the box-office, it’s crazy. The world still had a Batman hangover and it’s so clear that Superhero movies just weren’t the draw they are right now. It didn’t even make 400 million, crazy. The Batman will gross that in probably 7 days, which tells you everything you need to know about the world and how they feel about the dark knight.

When you discuss directors that changed the landscape, that changed the genre, that changed cinema, Christopher Nolan is one of them. The world may not have seen this movie in bunches, but I can tell you that on some days, I truly believe this is the best Batman ever made (so far). A polar opposite feel, grounded, dark, gritty, all these things can sum up the Nolan universe. No more bright lights, over the top villains, and piss-poor scripts. How we perceived comic book movies changed forever when Batman Begins dropped. Hans Zimmer creates an epic score, that suits this universe so well. The perfect blend of music and imagery, create the ultimate experience.

Christian Bale suits up as our new Cape Crusader, making him for most people the definitive Batman. An all-star cast that showcased legit acting chalked full of real performances. Villains felt serious, and didn’t have some over the top schemes that felt out of this world and unrealistic. What Nolan brought to Batman was realism. So grounded that his interpretation felt more of a man in a bat-suit than Batman. That had its pros and its cons. It was almost to detached to the Batman mythos and he reinvented something completely. You need that balance of realism, grounded-ness but at the same time those special elements that make Batman who he is. Remember he does fight people who can control plants or shape-shift.

I really love the Batsuit in this movie. I think its been the best live action suit (so far). It’s Bale’s best performance as Batman here, the best voice, costume and it just felt so raw. The hype around the sequel got so intense, I wonder if this role almost got away from him a little bit. I wish we got this Batman in the two movies that followed, because for me, we didn’t.

Lastly, Nolan showed that you didn’t need a post credit stinger to get fans excited. This has arguably the greatest final scene in a comic book movie. Setting up The Joker, letting fans who this would continue and got us all so excited for what was to come.

Score = 94/100

The Dark Knight. Release Date: July 18th, 2008. Director: Christopher Nolan. Box-Office: 1.05 Billion.

When the menace known as the Joker wreaks havoc and chaos on the people of Gotham, Batman must accept one of the greatest psychological and physical tests of his ability to fight injustice.

Imagine that was the final shot of the movie? Chaos triumphs. Evil finally conquers good. It’s rare to see that in a film as big as The Dark Knight. This movie doesn’t come without all sorts of what ifs and questions, but one thing is certain, this is a groundbreaking achievement in film-making. It’s a movie that literally everyone went a saw, you would be hard pressed to run into someone, who hadn’t seen The Dark Knight.

Nolan was already a remarkable director, but it feels like TDK was the movie he finally found his identity and where all his tricks and strongest qualities fell into place and he made his greatest film to date. Directors are still chasing the success of TDK, because it was so revolutionary and ground-breaking, comic book movies have been coping this mould for quite some time.

Everyone is on their A-Game in this, including the man himself, Heath Ledger. It’s rare to see such a performance, honestly it’s regarded as one of the finest pieces of acting this century. What happened to him is a travesty, but this memorable performance is something that will live on forever and something no one will ever forget. Heck even Eric Roberts is giving one hell of a performance. It’s just not Heath that carries this film, it’s a collection of terrific performances from top to bottom. Eckhart grows on me every time I watch this. I think the biggest mistake the movie makes is killing him off. I get that it fulfills his arc for the movie but he was so powerful and such a worthy foe for this Batman that having him stick around could have been an interest idea for the finale.

We get the best Bale Batman moment when he falls onto the van with Scarecrow in it and follows it up with the iconic line “I’m not wearing hockey pads” line. We also get one of the greatest sequences honestly ever put to film? Flipping the 18 wheeler, introducing the Bat-Pod, the showdown between Joker and Batman. I love it to so much, it’s peak cinema. Joker hunting down Dent is 10 minutes of pure movie magic.

Fans have always wanted a little more you know? One last scene with Joker, a deleted scene, anything. You always wondered how the final movie would have gone down if it weren’t for Heath’s passing. There’s no way you don’t return to his character and I’m sure that was probably the idea. It could be the greatest and bigger “what-if” in the history of movies.

My biggest gripe with the movie. Nolan detached himself from the Gotham City he build in Begins. The Narrows are no more and that was one of the strongest aspects of his first film. I feel like that aura and the Joker would have meshed beautifully, it just felt like Gotham no longer had any sort of identity, and that should never be the case in a Batman movie. Lastly, I hate the redesign of the Bat-suit. It’s arguably the worst looking suit in all the Batman movies. Even Schumacher had great looking suits.

At the end of the day, I saw this movie 9 times in theatres.

Score = 96/100

The Dark Knight Rises. Release Date: July 20th, 2012. Director: Christopher Nolan. Box-Office: 1.08 Billion

Critical Distance: Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight Rises - Slant Magazine

Eight years after the Joker’s reign of anarchy, Batman, with the help of the enigmatic Catwoman, is forced from his exile to save Gotham City from the brutal guerrilla terrorist Bane.

The grande finale. The big sendoff to our beloved Batman. Was this always the conclusion Nolan had in mind? Maybe not, but it’s the one we got and for Bruce Wayne and Batman it certainly is a proper sendoff. He goes up against his toughest foe yet and with an already broken body, Batman is pushed to his absolute limits.

8 years have passed and Batman finally comes out of retirement. No thanks to Tom Hardy’s Bane, who is a force to be reckon with and a powerful force whenever he is on screen. For me having 8 years passed was weird, it should have been a shorter time, but after the trilogy ended, it was obvious that Nolan certainly had an idea for what he believed the Batman stood for. The whole idea of the Nolan Batman, anyone can be Batman, it stands for more of a symbol than anything else. It stands for hope, it means that Gotham can be protected and that crime won’t be safe in the streets. It doesn’t matter who’s behind the cowl, that’s not what makes Batman who he is, as long as he is out there, Gotham will be safe. That’s why this movie ends the way it does.

So in all of these 8 years, Bruce Wayne never decided to take care of his body? He’s a billionaire, it never makes sense why he thought he didn’t need to protect his body. If he knew deep down that Batman would once again be called upon, why not keep in good shape, even if Bruce Wayne became a recluse. It’s my biggest gripe with the whole movie, because it’s something that is so out of character for Bruce Wayne.

Bringing to life part of the Knightfall storyline, having Bane break the Batman’s back is a special moment for comic book movies. It’s a tense and hard-hitting scene that feels so raw and gritty because of how quiet it is. Batman is pushed to his limits mentally and physically and it ends with a fantastic showdown that showcases everything that makes him the beautiful and beloved character that he is.

Could we have gotten more of Nolan and his Batman with Joseph Gordon Levitt? Possibly, but I think Nolan was done with all of this, and with the passing of Heath, I still don’t think this was the real story he wanted to tell. It’s still such a strong trilogy that made fans want more Batman. When we see Batman again for the first time it’s 45 minutes into the movie and when that spine tingling score takes hold, it will literally send chills down your entire body.

This movie has some really special Batman moments, but at the end of the day, he was just a man behind a mask, a symbol. This wasn’t a true telling of Batman and that’s what’s going to differentiate between the Nolan movies and what’s to come with Pattinson. The world isn’t ready.

Score = 89/100

Reviews

‘Doctor Strange In The Multiverse of Madness’ Trailer Hits

We are reaching new levels with the new Doctor Strange movie. Any and every Marvel character has a chance to pop up in this thing. It’s going to be a smorgasbord of Marvel heroes and villains.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness Trailer Reveals First Look at Defenders Costume

Seriously, if you thought No Way Home was crazy because a couple of old Spider-Man people came back. That’s simply going to look like child’s place once we are done with Multiverse of Madness. It’s almost getting to the point in the MCU where I myself might have to do some research on who some of these characters are.

Since his entry into the MCU, Doctor Strange has only grown not only as a character but in popularity. Almost the centrepiece of the entire franchise now, he’s been at the centre of attention really since Infinity War. With the events of No Way Home, he’s really opened up a can of worms and reality as we know it, is about to change.

We’ve gotten two trailers and things are certainly up in the air. This could be based on the fact that Strange is trying to prevent a certain event from happening, or trying to change something he has already done. We are seeing multiple variations of the man himself, even a zombie variant. Now, we got the incredible What If episode late last year, where it explored Dr. Strange and what happens when he becomes obsessed with changing an event in his life.

All I know is that this movie is going to alter and change the landscape of the MCU forever. Consequences will be mighty and by the time the movie wraps, who knows who will be left standing.

Wanda seems pissed.

News

‘Nope’ Trailer Hits

We are all the same page right? Nope means, Not. Of. Planet. Earth.

Image

There are directors, and then there are film-makers. That craft things that entice and unite movie fans around the globe. Jordan Peele is one of those selected few now. He brought the world to its knees with Get Out, and promised us that he was just getting started. Now he’s telling an alien story? This is one of the better teaser trailers or recent memory. Can always count on him to blend comedy and horror with a little remixed hip-hop music in the background.

Without a doubt, this has the best ending shot from a trailer in recent memory. Keke Palmer getting sucked into the sky, but it some how just feels terrifying. Peele is also reuniting with Get Out star Daniel Kaluuya and this appears to be his most ambitious film yet. Steven Yeun is also joining the ranks, and he seems to be playing the ring leader at some crazy tourist attraction, which I’ll talk about in a few seconds.

You know nothing is ever as it seems with Peele and his movies, but from the look of things, either aliens are on earth living among us, and they have been turned into somewhat of a tourist attraction kind of thing. Think a circus but with alien lifeforms and their kind is coming to earth for either revenge or to bring their babies home. You can catch glimpses of weird things and people throughout the trailer, and maybe it’s them who’s opening this gigantic portal in the sky. That’s just my guess, and seeing how this is a Jordan Peele flick, I’m going to be way off, but that’s the feeling I’m getting from the first few watches of the trailer.

What a summer event this is going to be.

News

First Trailer For ‘Halo’ TV Series Hits

Move over Mandalorian there’s a new Chief in town.

Halo' TV series heads to Paramount+ on March 24th | Engadget

Okay, if you told someone a TV Series based on the widely popular video game series Halo was to come out. You wouldn’t ask for Master Chief to look much better than that. It’s a spitting mirror image of the iconic suit that has been in our lives for almost 20 years now.

This show feels very Mandalorian if you ask me. The quality of the show looks great, nothing cheap about it. From the little we saw, you couldn’t really ask for much else with footage that we got. Having never played a single Halo game, I’m not sure what this show will explore. The origins of Master Chief? Will it be based off the actual story lines of the first game? I’m not really sure. What I do know, is that this appears to be an interesting science fiction television series that promises action as well as intrigue.

He’s one of the coolest video game characters in recent memory, and played by the great Pablo Schreiber, and when I said it feels very Mandalorian, because even though they got this great actor to be behind the helmet, I don’t think we will actually get to see his face in the show. It’s just the vibe I’m getting and I think that’s a great concept.

The show is dropping soon, and let’s see how it goes. This could be a steaming pile of garbage. The track record for movies and television shows based off video games is not great. But this could be the start of a new trend. With The Last of Us dropping layer this year, 2022 could serve as the launching pad for a wave of great properties based off video games. I have faith!

Reviews

‘Scream’ Review

One of horrors deadliest killers returns. The newest Scream is a worthy addition to this already beloved franchise. Where old school meets new school in a perfect blend of what makes this franchise so great.

Scream review: Time to give up the Ghostface | EW.com

Twenty-five years after the original series of murders in Woodsboro, a new Ghostface emerges, and Sidney Prescott must return to uncover the truth.

There are certain rules for surviving a horror movie, everyone knows this. 25 years ago made these rules were made famous, and people in Woodsboro have been trying to follow them ever since. Ghostface has a long line of victims, and the body count usually gets bigger with each new installment in this franchise. While there are certain rules one must oblige to in order to survive these movies. For me, these movies themselves must follow certain rules in order to be successful.

They are as follows. One, the opening scene must set the tone of the movie and must be memorable and arguably the scariest part of the movie. We all remember the iconic opening of Scream, that haunted audiences and made you realize no one would ever be safe in a Scream movie. Drew Barrymore was thought to be the star of the movie. Secondly, the movie has to have a decent kill count, and some imaginative and worthy Ghostface kills. Finding new ways to kill people is something Scream is known for, and great and memorable kills helps with the overall feel of the movie. Finally, you need the reveal of the killer to actually be shocking or surprising in some way shape or form. These movies are always whodunits, so the big Ghostface reveal and their motive is something that can either make or break the movie. Lucky for this movie, it meets the incredibly high expectations of all 3. Now, I won’t be going into spoiler territory, because these movies are best served not knowing any of those juicy details.

Directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett had rather large shoes to fill. Wes Craven, one of the many Gods of the horror genre is sadly no longer with us and this is the first Scream movie that he was not apart of. Wes Craven would have be proud of what was accomplished here and this movie is almost a love letter to everything that came before it. They are able to blend the perfect mix of bringing in new and interesting characters and honouring those legacy characters that they bring back. As for the legacy characters, who we all know and love, Sydney (Neve Campbel), Gale (Courtney Cox), and Dewey (David Arquette), they all serve a purpose and feel like they needed to be there. Not shoehorned in or just there for the sake of fan service. The Scream movies and especially this one always have something to do with the past. Hence why they all felt vital to everything going on during the movie.

As for the new cast, they once again manage to bring in the best looking young people in Hollywood that all happen to go to the same high school. It can’t be a Scream movie without a good looking cast. Everything comes back to the past, so as for these new meat puppets, they are all somehow connected to the original killers or victims from Scream. We have sisters Sam (Melissa Barrera) and Tara (Jenna Ortega), who’s history I will keep quiet about. This movie is all about Sam, as she is set up to be the new Sydney. We have Sam’s boyfriend Richie (Jack Quaid), who is a lovable yet unqualified person to help protect Sam, because he knows nothing about horror movies, or does he? Never trust the boyfriends, or maybe this time you can? We have Tara’s group of friends, Liv (Sonia Ammar), Wes (Dylan Minnette), Amber (Mikey Madison) and the clear standouts and MVPS of the movie, twins Chad (Mason Gooding) and Mindy (Jasmin Savoy Brown). They are the niece and nephew of the legend Randy. So they know a thing or two about how to survive a horror movie. The whole new cast works great, they are interesting enough that you end up caring about them, and they each bring their own unique qualities to their respected character. This really feels like a whodunit, more so than the last 3 installements. They are questioning the moves and motives of all of their friends and can’t help point fingers at one another when something goes wrong. The movie does a great job trying to tease who the killer is and who isn’t as you change your mind about five or six times throughout the film. Until the final bloody showdown that exposes the killers and why they are doing all of this……

What I love about these movies is just how simple and fun they can be. Not to mention I just think Ghostface is so damn cool and one of the best creations in all of horror. This feels like a proper sequel, nothing is held back, it’s violent as hell and the blood shed and body count is high. This feels like a rated R movie, unlike some of the last few sequels. They are setting up a new franchise here, where we could easily get a few more Scream movies and that’s just good news for everyone. I would say this is the second best film in the franchise and I can’t wait to see where they go next. Yes the movie has some flaws, more so in the first half of the film, but the 3rd act blood bath really took me for surprise and it’s just so great seeing Neve Campbell do her thing again.

Scream = 81/100