‘Blade Runner 2049’ Review 

Simply marvelous, one of the best science fiction movies of the decade. Unlike anything I’ve ever seen

(WARNER BROTHERS)
A sequel 35 years in the making, some people have been waiting their wholes lives for a follow up to the masterpiece that was 1982s Blade Runner directed by the legendary Ridley Scott. It’s crazy to think about a sequel being made 35 years later, and it turns out to be one of the greatest sequels in the history of cinema. This is why we go to the movies; it’s movies like Blade Runner 2049 that make people like myself realize why I love film so much. It had everything I want in a movie it is simply marvelous. This dark and twisted, futureristic, neo-noir film, that is exstential in every sense of the word, is just all around stunning. Denis Villeneuve directs the follow up, and he is fast approaching becoming one of the best, if not the best director in Hollywood right now. Villeneuve’s track record right now is uncanny and something I can’t really fathom at this point. Every time he steps up to the plate, he hits a walk off home run. I think it was a mistake not getting this man to direct Episode IX because he is the perfect man for the job, especially after watching this science fiction masterpiece. Blade Runner 2049 is the kind of movie that inspires young filmmakers, or creates new ones. This will be a vague review because I don’t want to spoil a single thing about this movie, you need to go experience this for yourself, because it’s unlike anything I have ever seen. I knew it would be one of the most beautiful movies, but it even exceeded my expectations in that regard.

So the movie follows Blade Runner, Agent K (Ryan Gosling) as he is investigating a case from the past. As he learns more about the case and himself, he starts to question everything he knows and his beliefs. The case ultimately leads him to Deckard (Harrison Ford) and the two of them must work together for the common good. I’m really going to leave it at that, and not getting into any specific plot points, because going in and just experiencing this movie is what it’s all about. Everyone knows that Ryan Gosling is an A-list actor, a movie star, but he reaches new heights in this. It’s weird, I don’t think anyone else could have been in this role, Gosling does so much acting in his face, and he really is a master brooder. He really showed that he could lead a franchise, that he is more than just a love interest in a rom com. Like I said, everyone already knows this, but I don’t know I was just really blown away by his performance, and he worked really well alongside Harrison Ford. Imagine playing a character 35 years later. I thought he might mail it in here, but Harrison Ford was simply delightful as Deckard again. He did not take any scenes off and he seemed to relish being back playing this character. This is his best performance in a long time, I know he came back as Hon Solo, but this role and performance is vastly superior to his in The Force Awakens. I think Ford fed off Ryan’s intensity and they just complemented each other so well here, and I would really love to see them work together again. The rest of the cast is fantastic, Dave Bautista is great, and he just keeps on impressing me after his shift towards becoming an actor. Some of the cast has very minor roles, where they are only in a few scenes, but the scenes that they are in, they are all in for their roles, and that’s what you need in a movie like this. Everyone committed and wants to be the best they can be. Robin Wright as Joshi, who is K’s boss is also great, she’s good in every thing, so that should not shock anyone. Jared Leto who plays Niander Wallace is good. It’s Leto and I think there’s a fine line between people really loving Leto and people who are just sort of “mehh.” I like Leto so I thought he was great as the bad guy Wallace, I guess he really isn’t a bad guy; it’s hard to describe his character. The two people I was pleasantly surprised about were Ana de Armas who plays Joi; I’m not going to go into detail about her character, because it’s actually really interesting and unique, so I will just say that I thought she did a fantastic job. She’s in a ton of scenes with Gosling and they were so good together. But for me besides the two leads in Gosling and Ford, the best performance has to go to Sylvia Hoeks, who plays Luv. She is Wallace’s assistance/body guard, and she is menacing and just really stood out in the movie. Again I don’t want to say to much, but after the movie, I thought this women, just got a lot of people’s attention and we will be seeing her in more things to come.

But the real star of the movie is the cinematographer Roger Deakins. I can’t overstate how beautiful this movie is. At times and certain moments the visuals are actually distracting because of how beautiful they are, you’re almost not paying attention to the actual movie, but rather taking in all the scenery. Without doubt the best cinematography that I can ever remember seeing in the movie theatre. Some of the visuals and imagery are breathtaking and I couldn’t really believe what I was looking at. The movie takes place in the year 2049, and I swear, there wasn’t one moment where I thought, yeah that looks fake, or that’s too much CGI. It’s flawless, and perfect and so crisp looking. The detail and the colors are so incredible, and again it’s just something you need to go see, because it’s so hard to describe and put into words. Just give Roger Deakins his Oscar now, like don’t even bother having the cinematography category this year, because there really is no dog in this fight other than Roger. This movie will win a bunch of Oscars, the score and the sound is also perfect. You need to go find the biggest screen you can, that has the loudest speakers, get a large soda and popcorn and just get transported to this world. The reason I go to the movies is to escape from life, you want to be transported to another world, and this is exactly what happens. Blade Runner 2049 is a film from start to finish. One of the best parts about this movie is that it just wanted to be its own movie. They didn’t try to build this massive universe that will have a ton of other sequels or spin off movies. They had an idea in mind for the movie and they executed that plan to mere perfection. You just get immersed into this world and you don’t want to leave, I know I didn’t. At a run time of almost 3 hours, it flew by, because you just want to keep seeing these incredible landscapes and I felt that the movie was paced beautifully. The movie is also very thought provoking they ask you questions and challenge your way of thinking. Just like the original, they want to open your mind and that’s exactly what happens.

I really can’t express enough how much I loved this movie; it’s one of the best sequels ever made and also one of the best science fiction movies ever made. It’s a shame that I don’t think a lot of people are going out to see this movie, so I think with word of mouth that could change. I can also see this movie not being for everyone. This is a piece of movie art that will live on forever. I really can’t wait to see it again. This is one of the best movies of the year! GO SEE THIS MOVIE.

Check ya later

Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews – Blade Runner 2049 = 96/100

‘Wonder Woman’ Review 

No surprise here, women can make incredible movies and it needs to happen more often. Wonder Woman is simply delightful.

(WARNER BROS.)

Well it only took 75 years, but the world finally got a Wonder Woman movie and boy it didn’t disappoint. Wonder Woman has so many things to be proud of. It’s the first superhero movie with a female lead in almost a decade (but we really shouldn’t count Catwoman), it’s the first ever superhero film directed by a woman (Patty Jenkins) who is a goddamn rock star, and it’s the first movie to gross over 100 million dollars in its first weekend with a female director! It took awhile, longer than it should have and this was a momentous and important weekend for woman and their role in the film industry. Along with the fact, it’s the first funny, and overall one of the best DCEU movie to date, with a staggering 93% on Rotten Tomatoes and universally loved by critics and fans alike – this movie was a grand slam for Warner Bros. The financial and critical success is wonderful, it’s exactly what the DCEU needed, but it shouldn’t over shadow the significant cultural impact this movie will have on the world. Wonder Woman has breathed new life into the superhero genre and certainly into the universe where she comes from. After last years Batman v Superman when the world got introduced to Gal Gadot and her portrayal of Diana Prince, I honestly knew then and there that this was a casting decision made in heaven. I had a blast watching this movie and when I left the theatre I couldn’t stop thinking to myself, “why don’t more women get the opportunity to make great movies.”

First things first, THIS MOVIE IS COLOURFUL PEOPLE! Holy moly, I was blown away by the entire thing, but the DCEU is kind of known to be dark and very “doom and gloom.” This movie had that stuff in it, but so much more, and some of the colors, and visuals throughout Wonder Woman are breathtaking. The movie opens up with a young Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) in Themyscira as she watches over the other Amazonian warriors train, and she is mimicking their movements, she is determined to be the greatest warrior ever. When her mother Hippolyta (Connie Nielsen) forbids her from becoming the warrior princess she wants to be so badly, it’s up to her Aunt Antiope the fiercest Amazonian ever (Robin Wright) to secretly train her. Themyscira looks stunning, it has a real Troy vibe to it, dealing with the Greek Mythology background. The set pieces and on set locations are terrific and the first action sequence takes place on a beach and it’s epic. Robin Wright steals the show during this scene, showing an acting side we’ve never seen before. She also has one of the coolest moments on the movie during this scene where she shoots three arrows at once, at three different German soldiers. Before this epic battle, we have our male hero, Colonel Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) crash land in the waters of Themyscira. Now this place was hidden from the outside world, but not anymore, and the Amazonian’s are in fear, that everything they love and protect could be in danger. When Steve Trevor tells them exactly what’s going on in the outside world, that the ‘war, to end all wars” is going on, Diana feels the need to help. I should mention that the reason why they have been hiding all this time is due to the God of War himself, Ares. Now with this war going on, they believe it’s Ares behind it, and he needs to be stopped. I just want to talk about Chris Pine for a second here, and just how good he was in this movie. Without a doubt, this has the best love interest/relationship I think I’ve seen in a superhero movie. The chemistry between Gal and Chris was incredible, and even though this was a war movie, it had a lot of rom-com feels to it, and they played off one another extremely well. There are a few scenes that feel like they are straight out of a rom-com and when I say that, I mean the best of what a rom-com has to offer. The last scene of the movie between these two characters was so well done, and so brilliant and just nothing seemed forced between these two. You know that they will fall in love, but it’s really special how they go about doing it. These movies always have a love interest who is always finding themselves getting into trouble and need to be saved or it’s just cheesy and doesn’t really make sense, but with Chris Pine’s character none of that happens, and he’s a big part of the movie, he’s almost the driving force for the whole thing. So shout out to Chris Pine, who just continues to give really good performances, and I hope he returns to the DCEU.

So when Diana decides she is the only one who can stop Ares, she leaves with Colonel Trevor and heads for jolly old London. This is where the movie really opens up, and we get to see the side of Diana that’s very naive and innocent. One of the things the movie does so well, and Patty Jenkins did such an amazing job, at capturing the spirit and essence of the character. Diana is such a strong, independent and passionate woman, but now that she’s in the real world, she quickly realizes just how little women are appreciated or respected. She just wants to explore the world, and she loves the simplest things. There are a few great moments, one involving a baby and she just falls in love immediately, and another is actually taken from one of the animated movies, where she eats ice cream for the first time and her reaction is priceless. It makes sense, imagine going your whole life without ice cream and just think of what your reaction would be. It was just little things, and little moments like this, that truly made this movie special. Gal Gadot was born to play this role, and I know she might not be the greatest actress working in Hollywood today, but she owned this role, and has come a long way in such a short period of time. Usually when people get casted as a superhero, you spend some of the movie thinking if someone else could do better or someone that is more suited to play the character. That never happened once for me, at times, I felt like Gadot was ripped straight from the pages of a Wonder Woman comic book. Zack Snyder has really casted the DCEU perfectly, when you think about it. She owned this movie, and I really hope that puts all the haters and doubters of Gal to sleep, because she really gave it her all and it showed in her performance.

Once they arrive in London, they meet Sir Patrick Morgan/Ares (Professor Lupin!), and three of Trevor’s running mates, Charlie (Ewen Brenner), Sameer (Said Taghamoui) and Chief (Eugene Brave Rock). We also get to meet Steve’s secretary, Etta Candy (Lucy Davis) who was really funny in her role. From the little screen time she had, she did the best with it. She makes a routine shopping trip, into one of the funniest scenes in the movie. All the side characters work in Wonder Woman, just another reason why this movie worked so well. Honestly they all had something to do, and they are given just enough background and development that you end up caring about them. So when all of them arrive at the front lines of the war, known, as “No Man’s Land” which I thought was clever and smart. Diana wants to stay and help, but Steve insists they keep going, and that no man has ever crossed these lines and made it back alive. She tells him that ‘she’s no man’ and we have the best moment of the movie. When she walks out of the trenches in her Wonder Woman outfit, I had some goose bumps. This is where the colors of her suit shine and it’s just a really beautiful moment. Which leads into one of the best action sequences, it’s Wonder Woman’s warehouse scene (from BvS). Not only that, but from this scene I got a little Saving Private Ryan vibe, and whenever you can compare a movie to that one, well you’re only singing praises at that point. The whole second action sequence is something I will want to watch over and over again, it’s perfectly done, and they really show off just what Diana can do in combat. I loved how the lasso of truth looked, and how she used it throughout the movie.

With every great hero comes a villain, and in Wonder Woman we get a few bad guys. Not the greatest of villains but they were okay. Danny Hutson plays Erich Ludendorff; he’s a German general who does not want to see the war end. I got a Red Skull comparison in mind from Captain America, and he was hopped up on some sort of gas the entire time, but his character felt a little stale to me. His sidekick was actually a side chick, a chemist, Doctor Poison (Elena Anaya) who is creating some horrible toxic gas, which looks to end the war and kill millions of people. I actually really liked this character, I just think they didn’t fully utilize her, and she had some layers to her, and I wish they had explored her just a little bit more. It’s really hard to have a great villain these days, but they all did the trick. Now for Ares. He was okay, but he comes at the end of the movie, and really my only problem with this entire thing was the ending. Wonder Woman was doing such a great job at not being like every other superhero movie, and then it becomes just like every other superhero movie in the end. You know, the big CGI-filled fight scene with the big bad guy at the end. They didn’t need to do that, I understand why they did, but they had something really special going on, and it just takes you out of the movie. I also just found the fight scene to be really dark, and I had a hard time figuring out what exactly was going on. Honestly though, that was really my only nitpick of the entire thing.

A lot of movies in the past few months have been very forgetful, and I don’t really think about them too much a few days after I have seen them. This isn’t the case for Wonder Woman. I’m just amazed how this thing turned out; obviously going into it I had my doubts. The DCEU hasn’t been on the best of tracks lately, and the last movie they released was Suicide Squad, and well I’m just not going to go there. Gal Gadot and Chris Pine did their thing, they were the stars of the movie, but Patty Jenkins needs to get a lot of credit for this. I really hope executives from movie studios take note, and start to let women direct bigger budget movies. I just felt happy the entire time watching it, there are so many laughs and great moments throughout the movie, and I’m just really happy for her, because this is a really big deal, and I hope people can understand that. This isn’t like a top 5-superhero movie, but it’s the second best DCEU movie, but I have a feeling I will end up liking this more than Man of Steel in the long run, but it’s just a really good/well made movie. Wonder Woman is such an incredible character with great morals, and values and I’m glad that we finally got to see all this on the big screen. I don’t know if she becomes the driving force of the DCEU going forward, or can be the Captain America for the Justice League. I know I’m much more excited for the Justice League movie now, I just hope they can continue with this great momentum they have built. All I’m going to say, is this movie is way above average.

Also I’m fan casting Sofia Boutella as Cheetah for Wonder Woman 2.

Check ya later,

Nate’s Movie Tour Reviews – Wonder Woman = 90/100

 

 

‘Blade Runner 2049’ Looks Breathtaking 

So I guess I should watch the original Blade Runner now.

(WARNER BROS.)

Wow, wow, wow. This movie trailer is simply breathtaking. After the smash hit Arrival last year, Denis Villeneuve he’s back in the director chair for the follow up the the massive hit Blade Runner. Right away I’m going to say that I really don’t know anything about Blade Runner, it’s a movie I feel ashamed for not have seeing yet. I will be getting around to sometime in the near future. I know it’s one of the most respected science fiction movies ever made.

Everything in this trailer is just gorgeous, Villeneuve makes some of the most boring landscapes pop and every frame seems to be packed full of fantastic colours and backgrounds. So I’m not so sure what this movie is about, but they are bringing back it’s original star Harrison Ford. Who seemed to play some sort of cop and now Ryan Gosling has come along and needs his  help. Ryan Gosling back at it, doing his thing. You know not saying a whole lot, but doing most of his acting through his facial expressions. Jared Leto looks creepy as hell, who appears to be the films villain. Coming off his Joker role, he is well suited to be the baddie in another blockbuster.

I honestly think I’m going to watch the original and I could care less if I didn’t see another thing for this. I’m sold, I will be there opening night. It’s hard for movies to do that these days, with trailers being rolled out every few months. So kudos to their marketing team for already getting me in a seat, that’s a hard thing to do from just one full trailer. Harrison, Leto and Gosling seem to be a trio movie match made from heaven.

Check ya later.