Seventh Son Movie Review

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Master Gregory is the last living warrior of a clan, called Spooks, known for fighting off evil spirits. His claim to fame is that he imprisoned Mother Malkin, a all powerful witch, a long time ago. The local church informs him that the a local girl is possessed and he sees to if after getting throughly drunk. At the local church they do their best to exorcise the child. He performs his own counter spells and out pops Mother Malkin. As she falls into his trap, she kills his apprentice, and escapes. She then goes out to rebuilt her fallen empire. Gregory then sets off to find the “Seventh Son” to help defeat her before she can rule the world.

This is one of the most standard movies I’ve seen in a while. It’s predictable, has a steady pace if not slow at times, and most of all it’s kinda boring. It falls along the same storyline of a guy having some need to find the mystical chosen one for some exceedingly difficult task. Just like the Matrix, the Hobbit, or even most of the Elder Scrolls videogame series. After that there’s a mild kinda training montage with a series of tests. Then theres really contrived love subplot between the chosen one and a villain. It’s explained, but all the interactions are something to be desired. Half the time it seemed like he was just a horny dude and the ladies actions were so obvious the blind could see what she’s doing. Then theres the other love story subplot between Master Gregory and Mother Malkin that is nearly non-existent. Plot holes this size aren’t forgivable and I lost interest about the two characters whenever they interacted. From a viewer perspective its discouraging because the back story between the two love birds needs to be told in order to place empathy and some kind of concern for their welfare.

That’s the main problem that this movie has: it struggles to develop anything. The characters are almost copy pasted out of other movies. Like: Gregory is the stereotypical war vet who’s a cynic and drinks too much. Thats only every other hero ever told in just about ever movie/book/video game genera out there. Malkin is the bad guy in the film with little to no explanation as to why she wants to rule over the world other then “just because.” At least over the top James Bond villains had an excuse. Some hated society, some wanted to change society, and with Malkin it’s implied she wants to destroy it or get revenge, but its not throughly talked about. Its appalling that the main two characters are as deep as a puddle. Everything is really spelled out in simple sentences and nothing is drawn out to any length to give a impression that there’s any growth amongst anything.

Jeff Bridges add some character to Master Gregory, but comes off as being completely odd. He talks with some kind of accent, but since no one else does, nor anywhere they visit, seems to have this kind of accent it sticks out like a soar thumb. Some people are sure to like his strange characters quips, but its usually hit or miss with this movie depending on the scenes circumstances. Ben Barns was probably the worst in the film. His acting and delivery on most spots were stale. Also the chemistry between him and Alicia Vikander was exceedingly forced. Alicia Vikander was OK for the most part, but failed to get emotional intense when needed. Julianna Moore is as good as ever, but her character was so average that I don’t think her acting could help that.

The Seventh Son boils down to having a stale plot and some very average fighting scenes. They spent more time changing into dragons or fighting then doing anything else. Everyones acting is here and there and is jumbled between good acting and rather stale pieces. The visuals are alright, but with so many contrived and cliche things thrown on top of it it doesn’t do anything to improve the situation. For a fantasy movie this is a very average experience and I’d recommend almost anything that’s come out in the last 10 years over this.

I’d wait till this one came out on DVD.

4.5/10

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Thor: The Dark World Movie Review

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Warning Some Spoilers

Odin, ages ago, fought and extinguished the Dark Elves who were trying to reverse the course of the universe and turn it eternally dark. In turn he captured their ultimate weapon known as the Aether. It has unlimited power and can’t be destroyed. So Odin and his men hid it. Jane and Darcy, back on Earth, discover a wormhole in London due to certain cosmic forces aligning. Jane gets sucked through one by the Aether. Meanwhile Loki is facing his punishment in the Asgard prisons and Thor struggles with various family issues.

This is one of the better Marvel movies made. It’s fun, fast paced, and has a lot of what most people could want from a Thor movie: action. It moves at such a rapid pace doesn’t fail to explain anything. However it failed a few times to explain why some things existed. So we were pretty much left with “this happened, deal with it.” They’ve always done a great job on building the characters as usual. They did borrow some from astrology to explain one of the main plot points, which was rather cool.

As the story develops they only touch lightly back on the Thor romance. The most interesting aspect is that they gave a villain a insane amount of screen time. This really develop the relationship between Loki and his brother Thor. The main thing that shook most was the unexpected deaths of people. However since the comics tried to keep true to the Norse mythology, then most should have known it was coming. I know I did.

The cast did a good job for their roles, but there were some noticeable differences. Natalie Portman (Jane Foster) did a decent supporting role, but considering her skill as a actress it was disappointing that she didn’t have more important lines. She pretty much played a ‘damsel in distress’ kinda roll. Hell, half the movie she spent it falling down. Chris Hemsworth (Thor) is good as the usual ground smashing hero, but there aren’t too many things that endear him to the audience.

Tom Hiddleston (Loki) shined seeing as he had the best lines. Not only does he shine as a smarmy jackass, but there are a few scenes that really make you feel bad for his character. But then he quickly corrects that later and makes you hate him all over again. Another that stood out was Kat Dennings (Darcy Lewis). She plucky. She’s strange. She’s hilarious and shows some similarity to her other performances, but it was still welcoming seeing as her quaky personality helped balance out some of the more tense moments. Also Stellan Skarsgard (Erik Selvig) was fantastic as a supporting character as usual. Instead of being drab, like in Pirates of the Caribbean series, he flounders about as the crazy madman who can see the universe and is captively strange while performing.

This is a solid Marvel film. It feels like it’s leading up to more Marvel movies or is building up for another sequel. It excels in continuing the story from the comics and creating really unique fight scenes. However it falters on minor story flaws that don’t play to character strengths like it did in the original.

Go see it in theaters, it’s pretty good.

7.5/10

Man of Steel

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Some spoilers!

Jor-El (Russel Crow) is a scientist tries to convince the rulers of Krypton to abandon the planet due to it being completely dry of resources. General Zod throws a revolution against the current rulers and kills them. As Jor-El then fears for his sons life, the first natural born person on Krypton in eons, rushes off to ship his son to Earth. Kal-El/Clark Kent (Henry Cavill) grows up knowing his different and learns of his extraterrestrial heritage. He eventually has to defend Earth from General Zod who wants to rule Earth and rebuild Krypton.

This is a great fast paced movie. It starts with a bang with the destruction of Krypton. The struggles of any kid are amplified because Clark slowly starts to realize he’s different and his parents help him hide what he is. Later he travels the globe taking odd jobs and helping who he can when he can. Yes there is some immaturity to his actions, but most are within reason and for the greater good.

The greatest parts of the movie is that despite all Superman is facing he still takes time to see if others are OK, or safe. There’s a few scenes where he does ask if someone is OK during the middle of a fight or sky scrapers crashing down around everyone. This movie truly captures the essence of the Superman character: a almost pure (i.e. completely good) person. Which running into someone so flawless probably would be alien in itself which only adds to the stand-off-ish kinda personality of Superman.

In return this movie isn’t about much else. Yes, it answers questions like it tells why Jor-El sent Superman to Earth. It fails to be something concrete considering Superman would have turned out the way he did regardless because with most people ‘the apple doesn’t fall far form the tree.’ It also completely ties up whatever loose ends concerning the origins of Superman, and it did a lot better then I had expected.

Although I don’t understand why they introduced Lois Lane (Amy Adams), and their relationship so early. She came much later in Clark/Superman’s life and was more obsessed/in love with Superman then Clark. She was the making of a modern day working woman who’s more invested in a career then some man. So the fact that they left the whole relationship completely open was fine by me. It also left everyone to assume that it would be something in the sequel.

Oddly enough many have complained that half the movie doesn’t have Superman in it. Superman, in any form whether it be comics, movies, or tv shows, was rarely just about Superman. It was about the good in humanity, the durability of the human spirit, and how there are millions more out there like him willing, wanting, and able to help but they just can’t fly. More then half the characters in the displayed this. The best example was the side character Colonel Nathan Hardy, who was played by Christopher Meloni. I guess all those years on Law and Order: SVU did him well. Anyway, the two characters relationship develops over time and Colonel Hardy eventually sides with Superman. This showed Supermans slow ‘talk-things-through’ approach that you often see in the comics and it worked well with this character.

Every one did a decent job acting wise. Henry Cavill was good as Superman, but needs more lines to explore the emotional side of the character. Amy Adams was a cute additive, but, as said before, wasn’t really needed, even with the story structure. Richard Schiff did a decent job for most of the movie, but when the shit hit the fan in the later half of the movie he needed a little more UMPH to the performance when he realized everything was going to end for them badly. Michael Shannon was great as a insane bad ass as usual. Russell Crowe was great as ominous narrator, but the drama is sapped away later in the movie due to how calm him and Kent seem while they know billions could die in the next few hours.

This is worth seeing in theaters. The action is spot on and fun to watch. The character development is steady and leaves enough room for a sequel. It completely explores the Superman origins, even though it’s told in a more modern day explanation, and fully develops the Superman character. It even gives side characters enough room to grow. Just ignore the critics and go with a friend.

9.0/10

8.0/10 – IMDB

55/100 – Metacritic Critics Score

8.3/10 – Metacritic User Score

Oz the Great and Powerful Movie Review

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Some spoilers ahead!

Oz is a conman who works as a magician for a unknown traveling circus. They travel where-ever and seduces a few local woman and moves on. On one occasion he seduces the circuses Strong Man’s girlfriend and he comes after Oz. So Oz flees the scene in a hot air balloon and is able to escape. Soon after he is sucked into a tornado and transported to the magical land of Oz.

I like this prequel, but it seems to be missing a certain charm the original had, or maybe it’s because I’m not eight (8) years old anymore. Most of the early on scenes bugged me. For instance there are many scenes that were simply drawn out a tad much. Like in the beginning when Oz first enters the land of Oz there’s a extra long scene of where his crash lands in some lake. In the original Dorthy got shot into the land of Oz and INSTANTLY landed on the Witch. The story didn’t take it’s time on random things. It pretty much started and didn’t have random spacing of things with little importance.

Another was a scene where they’re running from some creature that the witch Evanora sends after Oz, right after he lands and The other odd thing was that she some how knew where he is in Oz. I know she’s a witch, but how the hell is she psychic too? Even if she had some kind of witch power to be psychic like the dialogue was worded strangely and the event lost most of it’s meaning. Also the scene that followed it was the two Oz and Theodora running from the monsters and the bridge randomly starts to collapse under them. That’s just so cliché.

Another was the setting up of Mila Kunis’s character, Theodora. To a certain point it didn’t matter she was in the movie till the very end. It’s insinuated that Theodora and Oz slept together and/or were romantic some how. The scenes kinda fizzles due to lack of chemistry between the actors.

Also the transition Theodora undergoes makes little to no sense. Yes, it’s made very clear that she feels betrayed, or cheated on, but since her character was so blatantly in LOVE with Oz I don’t believe she’d change like she did based only on assumptions, girl gossip between her and her sister (Evanora), and NOT waiting to hear what Oz had to say about it all. Most people that are that in love don’t so readily betray those they love. Now I want to say yes it makes sense because she’s a naive panicky person. But to a certain extent it would only make sense if she was maybe five (5) years old or hadn’t experienced any tragedy ever in her life. So simply put: she’s simply too naive to be believable. The only plus to it is that it does help speed up the movie.

Green is the new sexy.

Green is the new sexy.

As for the acting goes everyone did a decent job. Some people complained that some of it felt fake. Well no duh. It’s a movie! I thought some of the acting was hammed up some to slightly pay tribute to the older 1930s Oz. James Franco shinned as a completely insecure, nervous, womanizing, smart con-artist. He seems to play different roles in just about everything he does and does relativity well. But there were certain parts where. Mila Kunis was super cute in the beginning, to the point of being sicky sweet, and later became a well rounded villain after her transformation segment. Said segment was less dramatic then it could have been due to how the audio came out. Its nice to see her as a villain, but considering half her carrier has been “bad guys” or crotchety women it’s not much of a change. Rachel Weisz does a decent job in a stronger female lead, compared to some of her ‘damsel-in-distress’ roles like The Mummy. It was good to see Zach Braff in something other then Scrubs and did a relatively decent job as a supporting role. However there was a few opening scenes that needed tweeking. However, Michelle Williams soft and warm pretrial of Glinda, the Good Witch, that balanced out many scenes that were almost too cute to stand.

Despite all my griping there is a few laughs to be had. Many had me rolling my eyes with a warm smirk. There are a few that are really subtle in their approach so if you aren’t paying attention you might not notice them. The CGI is a fantastic addition and adds some depth to Oz. It is fun to watch, but realize it has a target audience of children under the age of 13. It’s warm, fun, and has a sense of fun, despite it’s slow paced moments. If you’re willing to see some actors/actresses in roles you wouldn’t normally see them in, go see it.

7.0/10 – I hate my rating is so similar to IMDB’s, but it does warrant a theater visit rather then a 6.0 something rating of “see it eventually.”

7.1/10 – IMDB

Please realize this is a PG movie.