Friday, July 22, 2011

Review: Captain America: The First Avenger

Title: Captain America: The First Avenger
Distributor: Marvel Studios
Director: Joe Johnston
Writer(s): Christopher Markus (screenplay), Stephen McFeely (screenplay)
Staring: Chris Evans, Hayley Atwell, Sebastian Stan, Tommy Lee Jones, Hugo Weaving, Dominic Cooper, Stanley Tucci
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action
Running Time: 125 min
Synopsis: After being deemed unfit for military service, Steve Rogers volunteers for a top secret research project that turns him into Captain America, a superhero dedicated to defending America's ideals.

What Others Are Saying?

Rotten Tomatoes: T-Meter: 71% (Fresh), Top Critics: 75% (Fresh), Audience: 86% (Like It)
Metacritic: Critics: 67 out of 100, Users: 8.5 out of 10
MRQE Metric: 67 out of 100
Yahoo Movies: Critics: N/A Users: A-

My Review

Source Material: Based on the Comic Book series with same name.

Entertaining Value:
  • Action Elements: This film is for the most part action pack. What I liked over this movie and other action movies is the action was well choreographed. When I watched let say Transformers 3 sometime there was to much going on but in this movie there seem to be a balance of action and drama.
  • Comedy Elements: There is quite a bit of one liners and homages to original Captain America. Both of these aspects of the film ease some of "war-like" tension. Some may argue that its to campy and light hearted but I think it makes it fun and entertaining. I'm guess there is more movie going people that are looking for fun and entertaining films over a artsy-fartsy films.
  • Dramatic Elements: There is some emotional scene but personally I think there where on the week side. Don't get me wrong the actors were awesome...I'm will to say perfect casting.
  • Sci-Fi / Fantasy Elements: Another comic book movie in the books.
Cinematic Value:
  • Acting and Dialogue: 7.5: Chris Evans is the go to guy if you ever want a superhero. With that being said I'm all right with him being both John Storm and Steve Rogers After seeing the film I came to the conclusion that Chris Evan is to Captain America that Christopher Reeves is Superman. I know Marvel would like to reboot Fantastic Four once they get there right back from Twentieth Century Fox. Therefore casting a person that will basically make us for get about Chris Evan's Human Torch. Anywho lest talk about the other fantastic actors in this film. Hugo Weaving in my opinion is in the top five actors who make an awesome bad guy...I think its the voice. "Mr. Anderson" lol A Matrix reference. It was great seeing Tommy Lee Jones being awesome again. Don't even get me started on the beautiful Hayley Atwell.
  • Art Direction: 8: This film is basically a period peace...Time period WWII...Captain America = Well America and Red Skull = Nazi Germany/ Hitler. I believe that atmosphere was portrayed in this film very well. In a friend of mines review of this very same movie he made a valid point. In a round about way the high-tech weapons that Hydra (Red skull's followers) used was obvious no match for the weapons of the time, therefore disconnecting with the 1940's.
  • Cinematography: 8: Because the action sequences were so well done the over all the film's cinematography was good, if not better than good. Not really much more to say on that topic just have to see to believe it.
  • Direction: 7: The pace was decent, there were some slower parts. I see Joe Johnston work as average if not slightly above average. When you got a guy who is mainly known for film such Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, Jumanji, and Jurassic Park III, would you worry that he might screw up...He did a decent job but I thinking it might have turned out slightly better under other direction.
  • Editing: 8: There are some cool montages that show off the bad ass-ness of Captain America
  • Screenplay: 8: The villain was a bit weak I think the story could have benefited from using more Red Skull, besides that it was good.
  • Sound and Music: 7.5: Good, had some campy music in the middle that was fun and light heart.
  • VFX: 8.5: Most of the film seemed liked it was done with practical effect except for the obvious like the transformation scene. Witch is a very good thing.
Overall: 8: I'm sure if your a fan you already scene it and if you haven't your in line right now, or at least have plane to see it. But if your waiting for this cinematard to make recommendation...then I say see it. its a good action movie that fairly entertaining, and it also a comic book movie.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2

Title: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
Distributor: Warner Bros. Pictures
Director: David Yates
Writer(s): Steve Kloves (screenplay), J.K. Rowling (novel)
Staring: Ralph Fiennes, Alan Rickman, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some sequences of intense action violence and frightening images.
Running Time: 130 min
Synopsis: The final chapter begins as Harry, Ron, and Hermione continue their quest of finding and destroying the Dark Lord's three remaining Horcruxes.

What Others Are Saying?

Rotten Tomatoes: T-Meter: 97% (Fresh), Top Critics: 100% (Fresh), Audience: 93% (Like It)
Metacritic: Critics: 87 out of 100, Users: 8.4 out of 10
MRQE Metric: 84 out of 100
Yahoo Movies: Critics: A- Users: A

My Review

Source Material: Based on Book with same name.

Entertaining Value:
  • Action Elements: There is a good amount of action, lets just say a good amount of the film is a battle sequence. A full blown war break out at Hogwarts. We finally get to see some bad ass wizard encounters, that just makes you smile.
  • Comedy Elements: This is a darker film but that Harry Potter humor and light heartiness isn't completely gone. Meaning you will get a good couple of laughs.
  • Dramatic Elements: Man a live there are a few sequence that might just make you cry especially if your a "fanboy" of the books. These scenes are cinematically beautiful.
  • Sci-Fi / Fantasy Elements: If you don't know by now that Harry Potter takes place in a high fantasy wizarding world then you mostly live under a rock or your just not in touch with any popular culture at all. Either way this film has a bunch of visual effect to achieve the magic from Harry's world, that us Muggles don't understand.
Cinematic Value:
  • Acting and Dialogue: 8: The performance were great overall. There was some highlighted character this time around that was nice to see for a chance. Notably, Minerva McGonagall played by Maggie Smith has an awesome battle with Snape. I think I enjoy the adult actor performance sometime over the now teen actors. I absolutely adore the performance that comes from Ralph Fiennes, and Alan Rickman. I' m not sure who else could have been a better Dark Lord, Ray Fiennes is such a great antagonist. Alan Rickman voice scream Snape, but this film we see the real Snape.
  • Art Direction: 9: The film is straight up beautiful...I hope to see Oscar nomination.
  • Cinematography: 9: Like I said before this film is an action film. With that being said the filming of the action is not horrible like we saw with Transformers a few weeks ago. Also so many different emotion were sparked with the cinematography alone, it was fantastic.
  • Direction: 8: I was never board and the film seemed to flow smoothly. David Yates did a good job in my opinion.
  • Editing: 8: I would basically say the same I did for directing for the editing.
  • Screenplay: 8.5: Lets talk a bit about adaption. The average length of a screenplay is somewhere between 90 pages to 120 pages. Keeping in mind that one page of a screenplay is about one minute of screen time. The book had 759 pages which equals 759 minutes or 12 hours and 40mins. That would be one long about two 120min moives pulse or minus 30mins, meaning a screenplay with over 200pages, that's a little more manageable don't you think. So with that being said some stuff has to be cut. To a "fanboy" these cuts usually ruin the film complete, making claims like,"They forgot this...didn't explain that...WTF" To someone who hasn't read the books, confusion maybe in order but they get over it quickly. This is how I tend to approach adaption film. 1. Did the filmmakers hit the main plot points and premise I remember from the source material? 2. Dose the added material for cinematic effect add to the over story, therefore making a more exciting movie? 3. Dose the content of the film have good literary structure? 4. Was there good character development? 5. Did I enjoy the film as much as I did the book?
  • Sound and Music: 9: I love the score as much as the other Harry Potter film. Music just add another depth of emotion.
  • VFX: 10: The magic was brought to life again but this time better than ever. I see VFX award or two coming out of this film.
Overall: 8.5: Sorry I spent sooooo much time in the screenplay section but I know the worst part of every Harry Potter film or another film with a huge fan base is what the filmmaker choose to leave out of the film. Overall the film is great and I think all Potter fan will enjoy it. I'm sure most of anybody has seen it. I didn't get a chance to watch until Monday after it this review is a bit old news. I suggest watching Part 1 then watch Part 2 while Part 1 is still fresh in your head.