‘Annihilation’ Looks Creepy 

Love me some Natalie Portman. 

(PARAMOUNT)

So the guy who did Ex Machina (Alex Garland), that movie was phenomenal is back with his newest project Annihilation. Remember how good Ex Machina was? So to say I’m pretty intrigued by his new movie, is an understatement. This trailer is creepy and really mysterious, where I’m not quite sure what is going on to be honest. 

It seems that people are some scientific expedition and everything isn’t quite normal. At least the laws of nature are off, and this appears to be a dangerous mission of sorts. With Ex Machina being different and kind of a statement piece and a true piece of art. I’m sure this will follow suit on that regard. 

Natalie Portman looks to be playing a biologists on this expedition and is in search of her husband, who is played by Oscar Issac. This has a really strong female cast, with Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tessa Thompson and Gina Rodriguez rounding out the ensemble. It’s really hard to get a grasp of what the movie is actually going to be about, it looks like things don’t go as planned and Natalie Portman’s character is replaying the events of the mission. There are plenty of awesome visuals throughout the trailer, and I think that’s why I’m so intrigued by it, really doesn’t look like anything we have seen in awhile and I’m fully on board for that. The visuals are really unique and the cinematography is so colourful and beautiful, it sucked me right in. It’s based on a best-selling book, so this movie will already have a following, and really I’ll watch anything Natalie Portman is in. 

 Check ya later. 

Tomb Raider Is Back

A video game movie, based on another video game. Probably not going to work. 

(WARNER BROS.)

Film studios never learn. They just keep making movies based off video games and they just keep striking out. Have to give them some sort of credit I guess, there’s no lack of trying on their end. So here we go again, Tomb Raider is back, and I haven’t even seen the originals, so to say I care about this in the slightest is well spot on. I didn’t even play the video games growing up, but everyone knows this franchise, because well Laura Croft is a smoke.

I’m getting a real Uncharted meets Cast away vibe here. Which in reality sounds like an amazing movie, but we will see how they do on the execution part. I’m not going to go over any plot details from the trailer, because just give it a watch yourself and you’ll find out!

They didn’t disappoint either in the reboot because Oscar winner, yeah you read that correctly, Alicia Vikander (🚀🚀🚀) is playing the title role for this upcoming movie. Okay, so I know they are extremely similar but this looks like Uncharted to me, and if you are unfamiliar with that video game franchise just look it up. I know Tomb Raider is way before Uncharted was a thing, but I’m talking the style and the tone of the movie, match it perfectly. I’ll say this, I didn’t hate the trailer, in fact this doesn’t look half bad. That has to come with a grain of salt considering this movie is based off a video game and we all know how these things usually turn out. Besides Alicia we have a pretty stellar cast, Walton Goggins looks to be playing the villain a role very well suited for him, because he makes playing an asshole look pretty damn easy. We also have Dominic West (McNulty from The Wire) who is just fanatastic, and if we get him drinking Jameson and singing Irish folk tunes, I’m all in. 

This has the potential to be a half decent movie, with a great cast and some pretty good looking action set pieces and effects. It’s just hard to get excited for something that has such a terrible track record. Only time will tell I guess, but I’ll give this trailer some credit, it really looks like they are trying harder. 

Check ya later. 

‘Dunkirk’ Review 

Style for miles. – That’s the best Harry Styles pun I could think of.

(WARNER BROS.)

 

Over time, I believe that Dunkirk will be remembered more for what’s missing, rather than what we witness on screen. It’s tense, it’s loud, and it makes you feel like you are standing on that beach with 400,000 other soldiers. I felt like I was part of the war, and Christopher Nolan really encompasses what I imagine it would literally be like to be stranded on that beach, waiting for a way home. It’s visually beautiful, in terms of filmmaking, its damn near perfect. With all that being said, I walked away from Dunkirk a little confused. For the first time in a very long time, I couldn’t remember any characters, not a single name. That’s not because there aren’t any characters, there is ZERO characterization within Dunkirk, and I’m not sure if that was done on purpose or not. It’s a war movie, so you usually find yourself rooting for certain characters or certainly getting attached to a few, but it was difficult to do so within the realm of Dunkirk. It just felt weird that even our greatest heroes within the movie, don’t receive any kind of backstory or personality that really bummed me out. That is Dunkirk’s biggest problem, there’s just a serious lack of substance to it, but that doesn’t take away from the actual movie. It’s just kind of something you have to deal with, and either you’re going to hate that aspect of Dunkirk, or you won’t mind at all.

The opening is so hauntingly beautiful, for me it was the best part of the movie, and it was a mere two minutes long. I won’t go into it, because I want this to be a spoiler free review, but it was really the only moment of the entire movie, that felt stress free. Any real moment where you weren’t worried about these poor helpless men. It’s a peaceful moment, right before we get 106 minutes of sheer action, suspense, chaos and death. Christopher Nolan once again delivers, I’ll say this isn’t his best movie overall, but the man really knows how to make a movie! He’s been on such an incredible streak, that it’s hard not to justify that he is the best filmmaker working today. I expect a best director nomination at next years Oscars, and he’s probably the front-runner right now to win the award. This movie screams Oscars. I’m going to say best supporting actor, best director, best picture, sound editing, sound mixing, best cinematography, and best costumes are pretty much all locks for Oscar noms. I’m looking forward to coming back and seeing if I’m right or not. That’s the thing about Dunkirk; it’s just so well made, but has other serious flaws, that for me weigh it down.

The cast is unique, because well the lead of the movie (Fionn Whitehead) might have 10 lines of dialogue throughout the whole movie. Which suited his character, but again it was tough to get behind a guy, who doesn’t speak and we know little to nothing about him. Tom Hardy plays a badass jet fighter, and in classic Nolan form, covers up his entire face. Also what’s with Tom Hardy and not being able to understand ONE word he says? I swear he puts peanut butter inside his mouth before he speaks. So that was frustrating, but he does pull a serious Kramer on his jet’s gas tank, that thing just kept going! Mark Rylance will get the supporting actor nod, I just couldn’t see this movie without him, and they needed his character, as he added the much-needed humanity and hope aspect. I’m shocked guys, Harry Styles is a good actor people. Like he works really well in this. Nolan making him a pretty boy d-bag is a masterstroke of genius. He’s part of some of the best scenes in the movie and is involved in arguably the tensest moment of the film.

With a run time of only 106 minutes, this is go go go from the start. You really don’t have a chance to breathe, after the opening few minutes. I found that ironic, in the sense that about every 10 minutes we find soldiers fighting for their lives in water trying not to drown themselves. For myself, watching people drown in movies is insanely stressful and there’s a ton of it in Dunkirk. There’s music going on throughout the film, which adds to the suspense, and builds on tense moments, the use of sound is extraordinary. When planes are flying over the heads of shoulders, it’s so loud and so effective, you almost have the urge to look up yourself. That’s how you make a movie, that’s how you get the most out of the audience experience.

One thing I wanted more of was some historical context. I wanted to know more about why the British and the French were in this situation.  They really didn’t dive deep on that, and maybe they were expecting everyone to already know the backstory, but I think it could have been really effective if they were to touch on it a bit more throughout the movie. This was a really huge event in human history; I felt they should have maybe touched on that just a little bit more. This was about 400,000 men trapped on a bench, with nowhere to go, planes flying overhead dropping bombs. They were helpless, they were hopeless, and you felt that, but for me, it just needed a little more gravity to it.

A spectacle is the best way to describe Dunkirk, you have to see it in IMAX, and it’s something that everyone should see. It’s why movies are made, and it’s the definition of movie making. It also can be described as an art house war movie because it’s just so different from anything that has come before it. It’s extremely powerful, and you feel the pressure, you feel the tension. I felt for every single man on that beach and you understand and realize pretty quickly just how bad they wanted off. I just wonder if our main hero ever got the chance to take his number two.

Check ya later.

Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews – Dunkirk = 90/100

Let’s Talk About That ‘Dark Tower’ Trailer 

Matthew McConaughey honestly looks to be the nicest villain in movie history.

(SONY)
The Dark Tower, something I really know nothing about. I know it’s based off the much beloved Stephen King novel. I know it’s coming out August 4th this summer and I know it stars a couple of real gems in McConaughey and Idris Elba. So when the trailer popped up online this morning I was pleasantly surprised at what I saw. After reading some of the Youtube comments, it looks like the books snobs will be out in full force for this one.

Idris Elba is some sort of gunslinger and it’s up to him to save both his world and ours. McConaughey looks to be playing “The Man In Black” who is trying to destroy both worlds. Honestly from what I saw from this trailer the action looks to be pretty dope. They really came up with some unique ways to reload your gun, and this being based off a Stephen King novel I expect a great story full of twists and turns. I’ve always felt that Idris Elba hasn’t got his just dessert yet, he’s such a talented actor, but hasn’t really been the lead in a big Hollywood blockbuster. Well this looks to be his chance, and I couldn’t be happier for the guy. I just hope this doesn’t turn out to be like The Lone Ranger.
Now for McConaughey. I’m not sure if I’m buying him as a bad dude. Like he’s never done that before and it just seems off putting. Mostly because he didn’t really change for it, he’s still talking like he always does, and I just wish either his voice would have been different or his appearance. Because when I saw this movie was coming out I didn’t know he was going to play the films baddie until I saw the trailer. So hopefully the man proves me wrong, it’s not like the man can’t act. So PROVE ME WRONG MATTHEW.
All in all this movie looks cool and it seems like a cool new universe to be a part of. With a stellar cast and some cool looking visuals I can get on board with this. It could be the last good movie of the Summer with an August release date. In the mean time I might get my hands on the book so I can march with those book snobs come August!
Check ya later.

‘Alien 3’ Review 

Imagine getting 40K for shaving your head, well Sigourney Weaver did.

(FOX)
Quick note, I watched the assembly cut for this movie, its much better than the theatrical release.

Talk about studio interference. There is a lot of backstory when it comes to Alien 3. The legendary David Fincher directorial debut back in 1992. To this very day Fincher has a hard time talking about this project and rarely does so. In fact there was so much studio interference in the making of Alien 3, which they spent roughly 13 million dollars on 10 separate writers before finally locking down a final draft for the movie. After the massive success of James Cameron’s Aliens, FOX wanted to cash in on this mega franchise and thought they needed another Alien movie a.s.a.p. So after all sorts of re-writes, some involving Ripley – some not. A draft even involved Hicks and Bishop to be the main characters while Ripley would be in a coma for the majority of the movie. To many cooks in the kitchen can best describe Alien 3. The studio could never figure out what exactly they wanted and little did they know they had a master craft of a director at the helm, who had a vision and could never fully let it be played out.

So Alien 3 takes place right after the events of Aliens, we have our three survivors in their stasis pods in hyper sleep. When an egg is onboard their ship, it crash lands on “Fury 161” a wasteland of a planet, home to an all male prison facility. Right off the bat, fans were not happy, because they killed off both Newt and Hicks. We had come to love these characters in Aliens, and Ripley finally had a sense of happiness and somewhat of a family. That was taken away so quickly in this movie, so Ripley goes to sleep at the end of Aliens the happiest she’s ever been, to waking up and realizing her whole world has been turned upside down. Personally I wanted to see the characters of Hicks and Newt explored more and was bummed out the first time watching this, and finding out they won’t be a part of this continuing journey that we see Ripley go on. The biggest change we see Ripley go through is the fact that Sigourney Weaver shaved her head for this role. I like it, it works for the movie, and everyone at the prison is bald, because they have a lice problem. I’ll give it to Sigourney she pulls off the look. One other thing about Sigourney Weaver, she was nominated for an Oscar for her work in Aliens, so let’s just say she went into Alien 3 with some clout. Not saying that’s a bad thing, but when you have clout, it can go a long way. With that, she didn’t want any guns in this movie, she is very anti-gun, so that was one of her stipulations, and FOX agreed to meet that demand. Because a big plot hole of Alien 3, is that they are located at a maximum-security prison but have no weapons and I always found that to be odd.

So Ripley finds herself surrounded by killers and rapists, but is never intimidated or scared. Again it’s Ripley she’s a total badass and doesn’t back down. Dillon (Charles S Dutton) is the leader of these guys; he’s a believer and very religious man. One of the biggest themes of the movie is religion and about finding God. They were all once terrible men, but now they believe they can make peace with God and still be accepted into heaven when they are dead. Charles S. Dutton is just spectacular; actually all around the acting is top notch. Sometimes it’s hard to work with such a poor script, so everyone is really doing the best work they can with the material provided. Dillon gives some incredible speeches throughout the movie, and for me, he’s one of them most memorable characters in the alien universe. The guy fights one with his bare hands, he’s just got a real hard attitude and Charles S. Dutton, did a bang up job portraying this guy. Ripley finds herself nestling up to the medical doctor Clemons (Charles Dance) as she needed some sort of comfort after everything she had been through. I enjoyed seeing their relationship grow, but again whenever something good comes along in her life, it fades even quicker. Clemons doesn’t stick around too long, again I would have liked to see him survive a bit longer or even till the very end. Charles Dance is a phenomenal actor, and they didn’t use this man properly in Alien 3. The other inmate worth mentioning is actually the lone survivor of the movie, Morse (Danny Webb) and I friggin love this guy. He serves as the comic relief for this movie. The inmates, especially Morse, don’t care for Ripley all that much and treat her poorly. Some even try to rape her during the movie, but when things start to go to shit, Ripley steps up and the inmates realize how strong and courageous this woman really is. Especially Morse, when she saves him during the final act of the movie.

So when a face-bigger attaches itself onto an Ox, a new breed of Xenomorph is born. Something that Ripley has never seen before and it’s stalking the prisoners one by one. With no weapons to kill, what the prisoners call “the beast” they all have to come together and think of a way to get rid of it. When Ripley finds out that she has one inside of her and not only that but a queen. She realizes that things just got serious, when her ex employer wants to take the creature out of her and study it. The tone of Alien 3 is a bit iffy, it wants to be suspenseful  like Alien, but also give us some action like we saw in Aliens. The effects in this movie are not the best in the franchise. Considering this came out after Alien and Aliens, you would imagine this would have the best effects of the three. That’s not the case, I’m not saying they are bad, but they simply just don’t hold up the way the other two films do. The Xenomorph itself at times looks great, when you can tell it’s being done practically, but when it’s not, it can be a bit messy at times. Fincher used the POV shot of the alien running a lot in the third act of the movie, it’s a cool effect but its a tad overused.

Here are my final thoughts on the movie. This movie is really only hated or loved. There really isn’t a middle ground for Alien 3. I feel that it’s so hard to try and compare it with what came before it, because both of those movies are masterpieces. So you have to look at this movie with those in the back of your mind, and just take it for what it is. Remember, there was so much interference with this movie, that it’s hard to tell what David Fincher ultimately wanted to accomplish, and I can’t even begin to imagine what working on a big budget movie like this would be like, let alone having hundreds of people breathing down your neck, or questioning every little decision you make. I love the last 45 minutes, it’s some of m favorite alien stuff, and I’m on the side of people who love this movie. I feel like maybe over time, more people will come to the idea of liking it the way I do. Appreciating it for the way I do, and understanding that this isn’t a perfect movie, and understanding that so much stuff was happening behind the scenes, and Fincher has gone on to make some incredible films. If you look up interviews of him talking about this movie, good luck because they are super rare. When he does talk about it, you can see how much it pains him, because he had a vision for what he wanted this movie to be and it never got to happen, and being a film maker that is probably their biggest fear. This was the last great alien movie, okay until Prometheus, but that took almost 20 years to happen, so enjoy this movie for what it is, because I know I do.

Check ya later,

Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews – Alien 3 = 77/100

 

Throwback Review – ‘Ghostbusters’

The 1984 version, not the Melissa McCarthy one….

video-how-many-calories-is-stay-puft-marshmallow-man-from-1984s-ghostbusters

I’ve decided I’m going to write a weekly review on some of my favorite movies and I’m starting this list off with a movie that some days I consider to be my favorite movie of all time. It’s a weird/tough question to answer, what is your favorite movie? What does that even mean? The movie you have watched the most in your life? The movie you know the most quotes too? Is it simply the movie you enjoy watching the most? Well if so the answer to all three of those questions is Ghostbusters. It came out 4 years before I was even born, it came out shortly after Michael Jordan was drafted to the NBA, this movie is super old, but it has and will always stand the test of time. Regarded as one of the greatest comedies of all time, to me this movie is can summed up in two words, almost perfect.

To this day I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen this movie, earlier this year AMC decided to air Ghostbusters everyday. (Thank you AMC). Regardless of which part the movie was at, I found myself immediately sucked into the Ghostbusters vortex and couldn’t get out. Ghostbusters is kind of like my sunken place (Get Out reference). There’s just something about this movie that I find truly magical, maybe it’s because I owned the Ghostbusters Firehouse growing up as a kid, and still have my Stay Puff Marshmallow Man toy, or maybe because I just think it’s such an incredible concept for a movie, that I can’t help but love it. Ghostbusters just holds a really special place in my heart, and it will be a movie that I know I will enjoy until the day I die, so I thought it was only fitting that I wrote a review for it.

You have to know the run down by now, Peter (Bill Murray), Ray (Dan Aykroyd) and Egon (Harold Ramis) all of whom are paranormal experts, but once their university grants dry up, it’s time for them to go into business for themselves. It’s up to them to protect the city of Manhattan from all things ghosts, before the all-powerful Gozer destroys it. Calling themselves The Ghostbusters, word spreads around town quickly and they soon become the talk of the country, as the city begins to become overrun with ghosts and they are the only ones who can stop it. They don’t do it alone; they bring in Winston (Ernie Hudson) of course after their plate gets a little too full. Let’s be clear, this is Bill Murray’s movie, the guy is a living legend and this is up there for one of his greatest roles. He has so many incredible one-liners in Ghostbusters, and the comedy is so natural. It doesn’t try to be funny it just is, something that a lot of comedies have a hard time doing today. The laughs are so subtle that if you’re not paying much attention it’s really easy to over look some hilarious stuff. Ghostbusters was written by two of its stars, Aykroyd and Ramis and honestly they are gods for it. This is such a unique and original idea, that I can’t even fathom ever coming up with an idea like this. It started off with Aykroyd and John Belushi writing a script for the movie, but when Belushi suddenly passed away, Ramis stepped in and helped him rewrite the movie, to become what we know now as The Ghostbusters. Not only did these two guys write the thing, they also were superb in it, the three of them are comedy legends, and it was really sad that Harold Ramis died before the 2016 version came out, because I wish he could have been apart of all the celebrations and reunions because he deserved to be there just as much as anybody else. Once Peter’s girlfriend Dana (Sigourney Weaver) gets possessed by a spiritual ghost, along with her over-protective nerdy neighbor Louis (Rick Moranis) things become personal for the team. I can’t stress enough how much I miss Rick Moranis, he retired from Hollywood shortly after his wife passed away, and he was an awesome actor. (Little Giants, Strange Brew!) The science-fiction queen herself Sigourney Weaver is fantastic in this movie, she really was a kick-ass chick back in the day, from this franchise to the Alien franchise. She will always be known as the nice lady who paid them in advance before she became a dog. Ghostbusters gave us a lot of memorable characters and performances, and helped launch the careers of many people, and it even gave us Slimer! It also gave us one of the coolest movies cars ever, the Echo 1 that thing was a real beaut.

Towards the end of Ghostbusters, something happens, a scene that for the life of me, I can’t explain why I love it so much. I think its badass, awesome looking, considering it was 1984 at the time, fantastic movie score playing and when I think about this movie, this is usually what comes to mind first. Maybe because these guys were just four average joes who happened to have unlicensed nuclear accelerators strapped to their backs, and could destroy life as we know it in a blink of an eye, but yet they were the only guys who could save the world from annihilation. This is supposed to be a comedy, yet this scene just gets me fired up every single time. So here’s that scene…. Nimble little minx isn’t she!

The last 30 minutes is all time for me, from the scene above to the showdown with Stay Puff. Let’s just stop and talk about the Stay Puff Marshmallow Man for a second. “It just popped in there, I tried to think of the most harmless thing,” as Ray puts it. When coming up with character Aykroyd he wanted something that seemed puffy and cute — but given the right circumstance everything can be turned into dark and evil. Stay Puff was something that could never possibly destroy The Ghostbusters, and he might have if they didn’t cross the streams. I just always find myself smiling when he comes on screen, I don’t know it’s something about a 100 foot marshmallow man that I find endearing. He’s just one of the most memorable things in all of movies, I swear to god. It just reminds me so much of a classic Godzilla movie, Stay Puff slowly walking down the streets of Manhattan destroying everything in its path, before a showdown with our boys. Not before ultimately getting roasted just like Ray used to do around the fires at Camp Waconda. I’ve always wondered how long it would take to clean up all that marshmallow? Were the people of Manhattan just going around eating all of it, like everyone loves marshmallows! Like the mayor just comes out and provides enough chocolate and gram crackers for a massive s’more party, actually if that movie is made today, that is 100 percent a post credit scene. Or did it kill a lot of people, like hot falling liquid marshmallow falling from the sky, that sounds so dangerous. But it would be a really cool way to go out now that I think about it. Why did they think it was a good idea to have a goddamn painting be the bad guy in the sequel, why make a sequel at all, it was fine with just one Ghostbusters, actually I like to pretend there is just one Ghostbusters. See these are questions you ask yourself when you have watched this movie as much as me.

When it comes down to it, this movie just makes me happy. I love when it’s on TV, I can quote the shit out of it. Bill Murray is one of my favorite people ever; it has everything I want in a movie. Laughs, action, great acting, writing and directing. It’s almost a perfect movie, I could go on forever about Ghostbusters, it’s a cult classic, a cinematic masterpiece. They just don’t make movies like this anymore, unfortunately they try to “reboot” or “remake” classics like these, and it’s a shame. I’m not even a big fan of Ghostbusters 2 it just doesn’t have the same effect on me as its predecessor. So just remember if someone asks you if you’re a god, you say YES!

Check ya later,

Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews — Ghostbusters = 92/100

Matthew Vaughn Come Save Superman

The DCEU is looking for someone to take over the Superman franchise. Matthew Vaughn is the perfect choice

rehost-2016-9-13-bf1395c0-f534-4378-a771-1454a66b9905
(Warner Bros.)
Warner Bros. is going ahead with a Man of Steel sequel, and they’re eyeing their man for the directing job. Back in 2013 the DCEU officially launched with the release of Man of Steel, and it was met with mixed reviews by both fans and critics. Helmed by Zack Snyder, the “godfather” of the DCEU as some would put it, is taking a back seat for the sequel, and Warner Bros. have been in hot pursuit to find his replacement. They might have found the man for the job and his name is Matthew Vaughn.

Matthew Vaughn, is on a little bit of a role lately, with hits such as; Kick-Ass, Kingsmen: The Secret Service and X-Men First Class, he knows his way around a comic book franchise. He even pitched a Superman movie to WB back in the day, and had this to say about the titled character. “I think that’s the one thing not to do with Superman, trying to do the serious ‘The Dark Knight’ version. Superman is about color and fun, or it should be, for me.”

His movies are all colorful and fun, and he’s no stranger to approaching a comic book movie, with already 3 hits on his resume. This seems like a match made in heaven, but the problem with WB is, they like to meddle in peoples work, and that has showed in their last few movie releases.

Now this approach would seem the polar opposite of the Superman the DCEU fans have come to know in Man of Steel and Batman v. Superman. Their Superman is brooding and a sad character, and maybe Vaughn could breathe some new light into this iconic hero. If that’s the case, this could be the best thing that could happen to Superman, bring back the character to its original roots in the Christopher Reeves era, and making him a fun hero to root for once again.

With the DCEU universe stumbling out of the gate with their first 3 movie releases, some fresh blood might be the best thing for it. With the sizeable hit that was Batman v. Superman, but not meeting the fans expectations and having serious tone problems. Following that up with the lackluster Suicide Squad, WB is praying that Wonder Woman this summer can finally turn this sinking ship around. Justice League is set to hit theatres this coming November, and with the apparent death of Superman in Batman v. Superman, he is looking to make a serious comeback in Justice League, and hopefully he might have awoke with a new and improved funny bone.

I’ve been a fan of all of Vaughn’s work, and super stoked about the Kingsmen sequel, that I could only get excited of the news that WB might be bringing in another fantastic director for one of their projects. Patty Jenkins who’s doing Wonder Woman, everything we have seen so far makes it look promising, and adding James Wan, and Matt Reeves into the mix, could make for some serious blockbusters down the line for Warner Bros.

So I’m on board with this potential hiring of Matthew Vaughn, I really hope he doesn’t want to bring back the underwear over the pants. That can stay with the Christopher Reeves era.

Check ya later.

Lets Talk About Disney

I still don’t get why Donald Duck never wears any pants

Disney, making kids and adults alike cry like little babies since the beginning of time. No matter who you are, at least one Disney movie has a special place in your heart. It’s undeniable; they just know how to pull on your heartstrings in the worst way possible. Remember the first 10 minutes of UP? That might be the saddest 10 minutes in cinematic history. They can also make us extremely happy, well it’s pretty easy to do that when every single movie has a happy ending. Disney is doing something new these days and taking the beloved animated films we all grew up with and turning them into live action adventures. They started with the Jungle Book, which was just outstanding. Fun fact, nothing in that entire movie was real, expect for Mowgli. Go back and watch it and it’s actually mind blowing, damn movie technology has come a long way. Any who, their next project is everyone’s favorite love story Beauty & The Beast and it hits theatres next week. So I’m going to talk about some of my favorite Disney movies! Last thing; remember all the weird sexual references in these movies, what the hell is up with that Disney?

Aladdin

That street rat really didn’t know what he was doing when it came to wishes. Okay I guess it beats asking for it to rain junk food from the sky but that was Kazaam, and let’s not talk about that. Actually wait, if you switched genies from those two movies, which is the better movie? The answer is simple, they would both tie for being the greatest movies ever made. Shaq flying around on a magic carpet, sign me up. Aladdin was so awesome, I would pay a lot of money to have Abu as a pet. I legit do a mean Abu impression, ask me next time you see me. Aladdin was the first Disney movie I wanted to watch over and over again, mostly because of the incredible job Robin Williams did but also I think Jafar is one of the coolest Disney villains ever. Did you know Steve from Full House voices Aladdin, man he must be sleeping on a pile of money every night from the residuals alone.  Final note they are making this into a live action flick, if they have someone else do the voice of the Genie, we boycott this movie. It’s simple the only lines spoken in the movie are lines from the original so they can still have Robin Williams be the voice of this character. It’s his character and his character alone. Robin Williams or we riot!!

Toy Story

It’s toys with feelings! Kind of a scary premise for a movie, because if this actually happened my toys would have straight up murdered me when I was a kid. Things got pretty intense, all sorts of galactic battles happened that sometimes involved packages of ketchup. Shit got real when it came to my toys and me. Toy Story really shaped the future of animation and truly was a life changing moment when I went to see this movie. Andy was super nice to his toys almost too nice if you ask me. I think in like 10 years Pixar should make a rated R movie and it’s just about Andy as an adult and he’s just a sick and twisted bastard. A serial killer who writes ANDY on all his victims’ feet! Holy shit that’s actually a sick premise for a movie and would totally be a smash hit. Who wants to help me write this movie?  I wasn’t fond of Woody or Buzz, to be honest I was a Mr. Potato Head kind of guy, that guy was hilarious! One thing is for sure, Tim Allen must pray to a Pixar poster every night because they are the only people giving that man work today. Poor Tool Man Taylor, who knew he would be a ghost in Hollywood today.

UP

What was Mr. Frederickson’s job? How much money did he spend on balloons in his life? Did he blow them up himself? Did he have a pump? Why have they made 3 Cars movies but we haven’t gotten an UP sequel? So many unanswered questions. Talk about an emotional roller coaster, I can’t reiterate how sad the first 10 minutes of this movie are. No wonder the Mr. Frederickson literally gave zero fucks about anything. He really did have the ultimate mic drop moment, just flying away with your balloon house, right before they are going to demolish it, what a badass. UP has my favorite Disney character ever, Dug the talking dog. He was hilarious, and just wanted to love and be loved. It made me realize I hope I’m still kicking when the world actually has that technology, it will be the only way I will ever own a dog. Really hoping for that UP sequel, somehow it involves water balloons……SQUIRREL!

Bedknobs & Broomsticks

I know, the 10 people reading this, at least 6 of you don’t even know this movie probably. It’s very old (1971), and it stars Murder She Wrote herself Angela Lansbury. Remember she was a witch/babysitter, who goes on a bat shit crazy adventure with three kids, that involves playing soccer against cartoons and summing the knights of the roundtable to defend Great Britain. I don’t really know why I took a liking to this movie when I was younger, but I watched it so many times growing up. I’m actually shocked Hollywood hasn’t remade this yet, or maybe it’s in the works, because nothing can ever be sacred anymore. Maybe it’s just when you’re a kid, you want to go on an adventure like this, it was weirdly violent too. They fought Nazi’s in it; whenever they are involved you know the movie is going to rock. The last battle scene was something I cherished as a child, I thought it was the coolest thing ever. This movie can do no wrong, so enjoy this clip I pulled of animals playing soccer synced with some crappy house music (sorry).

The Lion King

This is one of the first movie going experiences I can remember. Going with my dad and brother, and all of us going nuts when Rafiki came and fought off those hyenas at the end of the movie. It was honestly like the reaction we have now when someone gets dunked on in a basketball game. I’ve loved the movie theatre experience ever since, and  a moment in my life I will never forget. Still to this day the most shocking death in movie history, that backstabbing bastard Scar, killing Mufasa. That was hard to take in at such a young age, and the amounts of memes people have made out of it (I’m looking at you Tony Romo), it has to be the all time biggest Disney gut punch. The songs were great, it gave us Timon and “They call me Mr. Pig” Pumbaa. They are giving this the Jungle Book treatment and going down the live action route. Donald Glover will be Simba, and I’m personally excited to call him Lionish Gambino for the next little while. I could not be happier for that guy; he is blowing up right now and taking the world by storm. I would not be mad if they have Simba lay down a few freestyles in this movie. Why not, lets make this happen, I don’t think anyone will complain about a rapping lion. Is the world really ready to watch that tragic death scene again, but with like real lions, okay not “real” lions but it will look real so better bring a box of Kleenex.

The Incredibles

The best Pixar movie ever, and some could argue the best Superhero movie ever. Yeah, I just went there. I love when I am hung-over and I turn on the TV only to find this movie is on, and I know I’m fully committed to watching it. It’s on the list of best cable movies ever, that once it’s on, you’re done, you are not changing the channel, you’re focused on this movie and you will not move until it is over. The champion in this category Shawshank Redemption (You totally just nodded your head in agreement). We are finally getting the much-deserved sequel next summer, and I’m super interested to see where they take it. I hope that maybe the kids have aged in like real life time, so they are now teenagers/young adults and Jack Jack is quite possibly the villain?????? Again, two Cars sequels before they give their best movie ever one? Man something is wrong over at Pixar; we should be getting a new Incredibles movie at least once every 3 years. Since the first one the world has really exploded into Superhero frenzy so I’m hoping they kind of play on that a little in this one, and maybe poke fun at some stuff. The sky is really the limit for this movie, just give us what we all want, more Frozone. Just remember, NO CAPES!

Beauty & The Beast

Beauty & The Beast it’s like Shallow Hal but for kids! Wait if the moral of the story is looks don’t matter. It’s what’s on the inside that counts. Why does the Prince transform back into a hunk? Shouldn’t he be a fat slob, but Belle still totally digs him? Why am I just realizing this all now, Beauty & The Beast is full of shit. Are all the morals in Disney movies ass backwards? Who knows, but one thing is for sure, this movie comes out next Friday, and I’m pretty excited for it. The original is such a great movie; it’s almost the one Disney movie that didn’t need to be adapted into a live action version. I’m not sure what they could really improve on, but Emma Watson is in it, and well she’s the perfect human being so I will gladly go see this movie. Ewan McGregor is playing Lumiere the French candlestick and MAN is his accent putrid. It sounds like he has peanut butter in his mouth the entire time he is talking, so that might just get a tad annoying. The thing I’m most looking forward to in this is Luke Evans and Josh Gad who are playing Gaston and LeFou, they have such a good bromance in the original and I’m hoping that’s the case here. Josh Gad is hilarious and I hope he really brings it for this role. I still find it weird at the end of the original movie when they get turned back into real people that they are just acting like everything is cool beans. I would need years of therapy, going from being a fucking teacup to a real life human being, that’s a lot to take in, especially for an 5 year old. Only Disney am I right!

Check ya later.

‘Logan’ Review – Goodbye Old Friend

“What’s Wolverines costume? The guy wears a fucking tank top and a pair of jeans”. – Deadpool

la-et-hc-logan-trailer-20161020

As I live and breathe, the Wolverine. That Hugh Jackman, he making me cry. Logan, written and directed by James Mangold is one for the record books. Logan is more than just a comic book movie; it transcends the genre and should be an example of what a comic book movie can be. I’m going to go pretty light on the plot details, because there are a few surprises in the movie, and FOX did an incredible job at marketing this movie without giving too many things away. Ultimately Logan has to cart this girl around, and he’s not to sure about who she is and what her background is. Him and Professor X must keep this girl save, but the thing is she doesn’t really need much protection. She’s the one protecting them at certain points in the movie; she kicks all sorts of ass in this. This little ass-kicker is Laura played by the new comer Dafne Keen and she is simply marvelous. For this being her first role, she really knocked it out of the park. Essentially these three go on a road trip, to a safe place called Eden where the remaining Mutants are staying. As Logan finds out more about this young girl, he starts to learn more about himself, as she teaches him to reach out to the people you care about and it’s never to late to start a family. Think of it as Thelma and Louise meets Unforgiven. I loved it from start to finish, and actually watched it twice in 2 days before I wrote my review.

Logan is all sorts of brutal; from almost the opening frame the violence in this movie is gruesome. I loved everyone second of it, it wasn’t over the top or felt out of place or unnecessary either, it felt just right. Fans of Wolverine have been waiting 17 long years for a movie like this, to see him slicing and dicing this way through each enemy. There is so much blood and limbs in this movie, oh my god. The action sequences are very hard hitting, fast paced, violent, and masterfully crafted pieces. It’s unlike any action we have seen in the X-Men universe so far, well really any comic book movie that has come before it. James Mangold manages to do what Christopher Nolan did for the Batman franchise. This is a very grounded movie; it has a western style vibe to it. It’s a very serious, dark and somber drama that has incredible action bursts throughout the movie. You really don’t feel how savage the action is until it’s all said and done, and we are left in a quiet setting seeing Logan’s wounds, as for the majority of the movie he is beat to shit. This isn’t the Avengers, bright lights and jokes every few minutes, where you feel like nothing is ever at stake. Yes there are funny moments sprinkled into Logan, and our heroes are not walking around sad and depressed throughout the entire movie but there is a lot of emotional baggage that comes with it. Our heroes are seriously broken in this movie; there is almost zero hope in their eyes. Logan and Professor X have gone through so much and lost so many friends and loved ones that it’s hard for them to see any good in the world they are now living in. It’s not until they meet this new mutant Laura that a little flame of hope sparks inside of them. As they learn how to become heroes again, in a world that seems to have lost most of them. They learn how to help one another again and be part of a team and more importantly care for one another. Logan is seriously such a broken human being in this story, he’s old and beaten down and it was fantastic to see the Wolverine we have come to love over the past two decades reappear when the right emotional buttons were pushed. The action wasn’t forced either, these intense and brutal action scenes were always because our heroes found themselves in dire situations and they were always fighting for their lives. It was warranted and fit so naturally in the story.

Everyone really gave it their all in this. They were all in for their roles and the acting was all around exceptional. Dafne Keen really blew me away. Chalk it up to another strong and silent but deadly little girl. With the success of Stranger Things, X-23 really had an Eleven vibe to her, she doesn’t say much but her facial expressions alone were worth a thousand words. For a little kid to step into a role like this, in a movie like this is so impressive. She was honestly Hit-Girl mixed with Eleven, and in a movie as brutal as this she really held her own. I’m curious to see where they take this character, or if they will even expand on her. When you’re stealing scenes with Patrick Stewart and Hugh Jackman, and it’s your first major role, that’s insanely impressive. Speaking of Patrick Stewart he gives an Oscar worthy performance. Such a raw and gut wrenching portrayal of the leader of the X-Men, he’s on his last leg in Logan, having lost control of his powers and becoming more and more dangerous to everyone he loves. He’s fragile and senile and wants Logan to find his inner peace, as he doesn’t have much time left to enjoy the simple joys in life. Just like Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart has been playing this character for 17 years now, and this was his last time doing this role, so it was an emotional performance to say the least. Now let’s talk about the man himself. Hugh Jackman, this obviously is sadly his last kick at the can. First things first, without Hugh Jackman there is no X-Men franchise plain and simple. He helped build an empire of movies, and is the reason why these movies have been so successful, when you think about X-Men, Wolverine is usually what comes to mind first. They give him the proper send off that he deserves and there is some really strong symbolism at the end of the movie that sums up everything I just mentioned. Flat out after watching Logan, I don’t think it’s smart to recast this character for at least 5 solid years. That’s hard to do, because like I said Wolverine and even Professor X are so synonymous with this franchise this puts FOX in a very tricky situation. It felted like comic book pages were being ripped from their book and being put onto the screen. Hugh Jackman is the embodiment of Wolverine in Logan, and I left the theatre really upset that he can’t continue on after this incredible performance. There are some serious gut wrenching emotional beats, which just leave you almost breathless. This is a very human story, it’s about losing hope and the feeling of being alone and forgetting what it’s like to be loved and to give it.

At one point of the movie Logan notices that Laura has some X-Men comic books in her book bag and I thought this was a really cool concept to actually have physical comics about the X-Men existence in this universe. Wolverine went on to say that they were all “bullshit” and the majority of the stuff that happens in the comics didn’t even happen in the real world. It was interesting that they decided to put something like this in the movie, that the X-Men had become so beloved in the world that people were writing fictional stories about them. One gripe that most people have about Marvel movies is the villain but I thought Boyd Holbrook was one of the better bad guys yet, as Donald Pierce the head of security at Transigen the company that is trying to hunt down and eliminate any mutants. He was a compelling villain and they really didn’t need to have a big baddie in this movie because we just really wanted to see Wolverine cut though a ton of idiot henchmen and that’s exactly what you get. Stephen Merchant plays Caliban, a Mutant friend of Logan’s who helps care for Professor X as well, he serves as sort of the voice of reason in the movie, and I thought he did a fantastic job, so he deserves a shout out.

In terms of how everything wraps up, I found it to be satisfying, I might have wanted a few more little emotional beats towards the end, but overall I think life long fans will be happy with how things shake out. Watching everything play out throughout the entire movie was kind of heart wrenching, this is an emotional journey that our characters go on. Finding out things about themselves that maybe they didn’t know they had in them. It’s a beautiful movie, it’s shot and edited so well and James Mangold really made a masterpiece. This is in the upper echelon of comic book movies and it will redefine the genre, because at the end of the day I think this is more of a drama piece with super hero elements tied in. I haven’t enjoyed a comic book movie like this since The Dark Knight, I will miss Hugh Jackman but he gave us fans 17 wonderful years. Hearing Wolverine whisper, “so this is what it feels like” was very chilling and it was the kind of human emotion that was even more powerful than the extraordinary powers these people had themselves. Something I’ll never forget.

Check ya later,

Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews — Logan =97/100

My Love Letter To Logan

I wonder when Hugh is legally going to change his last name from Jackman to Jacked-Man? Just a thought.

So people we are finally here, it took 17 years but we finally made it! Logan is fast approaching and I couldn’t be more excited. Remember the year 2000? I was still a young pup, I hadn’t even hit puberty yet, and we had to listen to music on a Discman. Where you listened to the same 13 songs over and over and over again. Actually now that I think back on it, it makes total sense that I know like every boy band song ever written in the 90s. But I’m not here to gush over BSB; I’m here to gush about the Australian badass that is Hugh Jackman. He’s been playing Wolverine ever since the very first X-Men movie debut all the way back in the year 2000. Since then he’s been in 9 total X-Men films. Simple math would say that’s a movie roughly every 2 years, and the shape he needs to be in for this role, probably made the last 17 years of his life a living nightmare. I couldn’t imagine the dedication it must take to always be in that kind of shape, and the level of commitment Hugh put into playing this beloved character. Apparently the guy is just tired of eating egg white omelettes, so he’s hanging up his claws for good. Not before giving us one last performance, a performance we have all be waiting for, a rated R Wolverine movie! It’s going to be one for the record books, and I know I will be sad to see him go, but he’s already gave us some many incredible Wolverine moments that we as the human population couldn’t have asked for a better Stocky Canadian Killer. Well there is one thing I want, but we aren’t ever going to see it and that’s YELLOW SPANDEX.

A lot has happened in my life since Hugh Jackman took center stage as the leader of the X-Men. A lot has happened in the world to be honest. Its crazy to think that Hugh has been playing this character for about 3/4 of my life. Doing any job for 17 years straight is a daunting task, and no one in Hollywood plays the same role for that long anymore. Not even close, most actors don’t want to be tied down by long contracts, or have to worry about being typecast. You could always count on Hugh to be in the next movie, and there was never any doubt that he would walk away from this role. Now is just the right time, and with recent health issues, now is the best time for him to step down and take a much needed break. But there’s always one thing you could count on every two years, and that was muttonchops and claws. Yes, not all X-Men movies have been Citizen Kane kind of material, but that didn’t matter. All we needed was a little Wolverine sprinkled in to make things better. Wolverine is a top 5 comic book character of all time in my mind, so whenever he was on screen it was a real treat. It just so happens that FOX casted the perfect human being to play him. We’ve had 3 Spider-Mans, 2 Batman’s, and 2 Superman’s and countless other Superheroes appear on screen since 2000. I think it will be damn near impossible to replace Jackman as Wolverine. I can’t think of anyone that could take over this mantle, it’s easy to think of any other character and say to yourself, “Oh so and so, could be the next Batman or Spider-Man or whoever,” but not Wolverine. I’ve been wrapping my brain around this question for weeks now I just don’t have an answer. I know people will say that these are just movies, and he’s just an actor and this is just a fictional character. But I’ve grown accustom to having this man play this character, and I hold him so close to my heart. I will speak for more than just myself, when I say, when March 3rd hits and Logan gets released, a lot of people will be saying goodbye to an old dear friend.

When you love movies as much as I do, and come to appreciate what they can do, and the joy they can bring people, you don’t want that feeling to ever stop. The worst part about it, this being his last kick at the can, knowing it will be his best performance ever and without doubt the greatest X-Men movie ever made. I can’t help but stop and think we could have had this Logan in our lives from the very get go. It’s almost like I will be leaving the theatre on Thursday night with permanent blue balls, something no man wants.

From what we’ve seen far, it looks like Twentieth Century Fox is keeping the faith with the Old Man Logan storyline from the comics. Which we find our guy, Wolverine finding himself unable to heal like he once could, living a life of seclusion after all of his mutant pals have been killed off. Professor X is still kicking as well, and it’s up to the pair of them to protect Mutant, X-23 from falling into the wrong hands. This promises to be the most intense, violent and brutal Wolverine yet and with the success of Deadpool last year, it was only fitting to make Wolverines last outing rated R. These movies are changing the game in terms of how Superhero movies are being made. Small budget but telling good stories, and focusing more on the characters rather than the CGI. I just don’t want to walk out of the theatre wanting more, and being unsatisfied with the ending, because if any character deserves a grand finale ending, it’s this one. He’s giving so much to this character and to it’s fan for almost 2 decades, the least the studio could do for him, is make this movie one to remember.

So I’m going to go grab some butter knives, go smash some pumpkins and pretend to be Wolverine one last time. In the meantime sit back, relax and watch these awesome clips of Wolverine kicking all sorts of ass in X2.

Check ya later.