Power Rangers (2017) Review

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Summary: A group of high-school kids, who are infused with unique superpowers, harness their abilities in order to save the world.
**There may be mild spoilers ahead but I’m going to try not too. Most of the stuff might be pulled from the show or seen in the trailers.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. Of course this film is riding on the five main teenagers, their chemistry with each other, their acting, how they are as these iconic characters and of course them being Rangers. I think they all do a good job in their roles. I can definitely see hints of the original characters in them but they are updated for this time period, and all given character traits that a bit more realistic, not so cheesy and 90s lol. They are different but the nostalgia factor is there.
  • Dacre Montgomery as Jason Lee Scott/Red Ranger. His name is JASON LEE SCOTT! YOU GOT THAT MOVIE!? Anyway, he starts off as a football player, perhaps even the “golden boy” who pulls a prank and goes a bit too far and lands himself in detention. He’s the Andrew of this Breakfast Club. He is struggling with who he is, where he belongs and what his place is in the world. Obviously as the Red Ranger he is meant to be the leader, but he doesn’t start out that way. He has to figure it out and that’s quite compelling for his character. He has to learn his team and learn himself along the way. I think Dacre Montgomery is very handsome but there was something about him that I wasn’t sure I believed. It was inconsistent. There were times where I felt his acting was subpar and he was overshadowed by the others, and times where he did really well. He’s Australian and he does a good job at hiding that.
  • Naomi Scott as Kimberly Ann Hart/Pink Ranger. *Ahem* Kimberly Ann Hart thank you very much (and Claire of the Breakfast Club). She starts off as a mean girl, and we don’t really get to know why that is until later, she hides it which was nice for her. Kim maintained this mysterious air about her in the film at least until she lets it go. I don’t think she necessarily came off as mean but it definitely seemed like a suit of armor she wore otherwise, she is also trying to find out who she is. She wants to move forward, doesn’t know how and feels stuck in Angel Grove. Naomi Scott is so beautiful and she hides her British accent well. I think she played Kimberly well, a girl who needs to find out who she is, someone who is struggling with her past “mean girl” actions and wanting to be part of the team.
  • R.J. Cyler as Billy Cranston/Blue Ranger. He is the smart one of course lol (he’s the Brian of the Breakfast Club), he is also Austistc, which I thought was a nice and interesting addition to his character. He is actually pretty funny too, some of the faces he makes when faced with decisions. However, I think he is the most honest, and probably the most endearing out of all of them. That is evident by a particular scene in the middle of the film. The way he talks about being friends with the others, or how he feels about his father and his mother, it was all handled so well. He was probably my favorite in the film. I’ve seen R.J in Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and he was the best thing about that film and he stands out again in this one. It’s easy to tell that he grapples with being strong and confident (though I think he comes off more confident than the original Billy at first), he talks to much but he’s caring and sweet. Definitely my favorite.
  • Becky G as Trini/ Yellow Ranger. Definitely mysterious (also not so much Allison from Breakfast Club but pretty muchand she comes off cold for a majority of the film. She doesn’t warm up to everyone quickly. Kimberly tries and it takes a while, which I liked. They weren’t automatically friends like how every two girl rangers are in each season. She is quiet, reluctant and sassy when she speaks. It’s easy to tell that she doesn’t have friends, and that she may not really fit in anywhere and while she may not be searching, she does want it. She’s strong and headstrong. Being Becky G’s first film, I don’t think it really shows. She doesn’t come off like she’s been doing it for a long time but it doesn’t feel like she’s acting. I was impressed. I also feel she’s the furthest from her TV show counterpart.
  • Ludi Lin as Zack Taylor/Black Ranger. I quite liked him. He has a big personality, impulsive, sassy and says and does whatever he wants. After Billy finds a power coin, Zack makes it his business to get the others out, it’s kind of funny actually. The way he approaches everyone and everything is like a slacker who doesn’t care would, but of course he has personal things that totally shows he’s not always like that. Just like some of the others, he’s also trying to figure things out, and this adventure could help that. I liked Ludi Lin, I wouldn’t really buy that he’s a high school student though, the actor is almost 30 and he looks more like he’s a college student. It’s fine though, (he’s the Bender of the Breakfast Club). His Zack could be really annoying and probably kind of douchey, but I think he manages to stay away from that and keep him likable.
  • Bryan Cranston as Zordon. He is the mentor of the rangers. He is in the morphin grid in order to remain alive. Zordon lived years ago and he’s a bit grouchy about how things are going with the new rangers. It’s actually a bit of a departure from his personality in the show. He has to do his own learning in the film as well, he doesn’t have all the answers. It’s pretty great to have Bryan Cranston because he’s a great actor regardless. I liked how
    • I also liked his design. Instead of being in a tube, he’s able to move around the entire ship wall and his face is easier to see a bit more… emotional.
  • Elizabeth Banks as Rita Repulsa. I was curious how this was going to go considering the show version of her. I liked it though. There’s a bit more backstory for her character, and she’s creepy. The voice Banks puts on fits well with the time period she comes from and what she was. I liked how she stalked into rooms, the scene where she attacks Trini was a great scene. She was imposing but sexy. It was almost weird because when you think Rita Repulsa, you think of the pointy boob dress, the weird hair and the voice. All of that is gone but it’s good.
    • I liked her costume too. So, unless you were just not paying attention, Rita has the Green Power coin, and she has a demented green ranger uniform. Which means Evil Green sequel.
  • Bill Hader as Alpha 5. So I liked him lol. He’s a robot who can transform his body for certain purposes. He was able to move around quickly and he definitely had a dry sense of humor. Thanks Bill Hader. I liked that he didn’t sound like a child, and that while he’s Zordon’s assistant, he also has a bit of a backbone.
    • I will admit, his design was a bit weird when I first saw it, but seeing it in action, I thought it was cool. Yeah, his little pot belly is weird and his little lights look like headlights but for the way he moved around and did things, it worked well enough for me. I just hope that if they continue with these films and come up to Alpha 6 they should alter his design a bit and don’t ever ever do that stupid voice they did in the show.
The Power Ranger Suits. I know these received a lot of flak but I quite liked them. I liked them from the first time they released the in suit photos. I liked that they actually look like armor and look like they can actually protect the people inside them. Don’t get me wrong, I love the original show and their iconic costumes but these are new, fresh and practical. I liked how their vizors could open, I’m sure they did it so we can see that the actors are actually in their suits (they’re not CGI suits, they actually wear them. I think some of the lights and the purple diamond on the chest is CGI) but I thought it was cool. We can see how scared they are, or that they’re in pain etc. It kept us close to them. I also loved how they were able to morph, though I do have some questions about it that I will talk about in my spoiler review.
The Action. So, we see training happening, it’s kind of montagey but not Rocky montagey.  When they’re in their suits its awesome and fun! I liked the idea that they had powers outside of the suits and that it seemed that the suits themselves just protected them while fighting and helped them connect to their Zords. The scene you see in the trailer of them landing on the rock and Billy doing that awesome three kick thing, yeah it’s good. I appreciate that you can actually see the action.
The Zords. Soooo, I again liked the design when they were first shown. I think they’re pretty awesome. I liked that they looked like they could actually fight and do cool things. Watching Trini wreck stuff in that Saber Toothed Tiger and seeing Kimberly flying around in her Pterodactyl I thought was very cool. I liked them all, they weren’t clunky and obvious miniatures.
The Megazord. So, I did not have a problem with the design. I thought it was pretty sleek looking and made sense to be a fighting machine, compared to the gigantic lego man. I liked the fact that when they come together, instead of being in a control room together, they each are in their own pods where they actually have to move a part of the megazord where it really forces them to listen and work together. I thought that was a great addition.
The Friendship. So in the show, the main five started off as friends, or at least they knew each other well enough. They weren’t really strangers to each other. In the film, they all went to the same school and knew OF each other but they weren’t friends. It had to be grown and I liked that they had to work at it, to learn how to trust each other and be a team. It wasn’t already there. Sure, that helps bypass a lot of “origins” stuff but since we’re getting to know many people at once, I liked the fact that they tried to take out time to make sure we knew them and they knew each other. Someone definitely loved The Breakfast Club though because there was a lot of moments that happened that were similar to parts in the film. The scene in particular where they sit around and talk in that circle… most notably inspired.
New Additions/Improvements: I will go more into it in my spoiler review, but there were a few story elements added that I thought were really helpful to the story and the tone of the film. There were a couple of choices they made that I thought helped improve how the story moves forward compared to the show. Don’t get me wrong lol, it’s still a little ridiculous but they handled the additions and different elements well. Just as an example, there’s a different backstory given to Zordon in the film that as far as I know is very different from the show and same with certain elements to the Rangers’ backstory.
Cons:
Weird Camera Movements. I think a lot of my problems were mostly technical stuff. But this bothered me mostly in the first act of the film. There’s a moment where a character gets into a car accident and the camera is in the car with him and it’s spinning all around and what not. I can see why it would look cool but I think it would have been better to see the truck flip over like it did and then fade into the next scene without us seeing the inside. It also just didn’t look good. There was another time when a character is riding a bicycle and for some reason the camera was looking at the road… why? We don’t need to see the terrain he’s riding over. Just let us see him ride the bike lol. There was also some shaky cam at the beginning too which I hate, especially during action scenes.
The Dark Tone. So while I enjoyed the film, I do think it loses the fun that the show had. I’m glad it’s not campy and cheesy, it didn’t need to be but I do think that the fun aspect of the show, the bright nature is lost in the need to be more realistic and mature. I like a lot of the changes and additions but it’s sad to lose the fun and light.
The Megazord Design. So it’s here too, because while I liked it overall, I do think there should have been more color. I’m glad it wasn’t clunky looking, but I think there should have been more. Maybe where the Pterodactyl is, it should have looked more pink and the whole chest part should be red, that bleeds into the yellow.
Krispy Kreme. I wonder how much money they paid to be in the film because they’re brought a lot. Product placement boy! lol of course what Rita was looking for had to be there. There’s a funny scene with her in there but after that, moving on please.
Felt Rushed. The film is 2 hrs and 4 minutes long and I appreciate the time spent on certain character points, but I also felt like it was really quick. It’s kind of weird to be honest, while I liked their friendship and how it grew, it also felt in the beginning that certain relationships formed really fast. There was a lot of tension though, which helped slow it down. It seemed like someone made some weird choices in the beginning but someone else came in and tried to fix them later in the movie lol.
Extremely Cheesy/Extreme Bullies. Now, I know this is based off an extremely cheesy show, but the tone to this is different. It has similar elements of the show but the tone is different and I thought the bullies were super extreme in the way they acted. One of the bullies tries to literally break a character’s wrist and head butt him and the girls cut a character out of their lives… literally. lol that was some Mean Girls extreme stuff lol.
Overall, I really enjoyed and liked Power Rangers. I think it manages to pull away from the iconic show, but not in a way where it seems like it’s embarrassed to even be linked to the show. I mean without the show, this movie probably wouldn’t exist. The characters are relatable and we are able to really connect with them, and we can see that they are not perfect beings. They are young people trying to find their way in the world, and figure out who they are. I liked the chemistry within the group, they fit together once they got together. R.J. Cyler definitely being a standout in the film. The suits were cool and original and were realistic for what they were doing. I liked a lot of the changes and additions made to the story and background of this universe. The designs of a lot of things was different and interesting. The action was cool and easy to see what was going on. On the other hand, there are some weird directional choices, especially in the beginning of the film, it felt like certain storyline aspects and were a bit rushed when they didn’t need to be. While I liked the Megazord for the most part, I do wish they added a bit more color to the design. It’s also unfortunate that the light and fun tone the show had seemed to be traded out for a more realistic and mature approach. I think there could have been a healthy balance.
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Power Rangers? Are you even interested?
What is your favorite Power Ranger season and who is your all time favorite Ranger? (So far, mine is Mighty Morphin, Zeo and Lost in Space with Tommy, Billy, Kimberly, Adam, Tanya and Carlos being my faves. I really like the original MMPR cast period).
Let me know in the comments below and don’t forget to like and follow this blog! Stay tuned for a spoiler review!

Beauty and the Beast (2017) Review

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This was my most anticipated film of the year. I was so excited. I saw it twice and I loved it both times. Whatever I say here, unless I blatantly state as such, is not knocking the original animated film, nor am I detracting from it or anything like that. This review is for this film only. Due to it being a remake, I may say something about the source material but as comparison if anything.
Summary: An adaptation of the Disney fairy tale about a monstrous-looking prince and a young woman who fall in love.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. There are a lot of characters in this film but they were all so great that I have to talk about them. Some will probably get more detail than others, but just bear with me.
  • Emma Watson as Belle. I loved this casting when it was announced. I think she was prefect for the role, she embodied Belle’s intelligence, her spunky attitude (plus a bit more depth), her beauty and her love for those and the things she loved. I saw a lot of criticism before the film came out about Emma not being graceful enough for Belle and I think that’s just silly. In this film, Belle is a farm girl and she gets her hands dirty, she even makes her own washing machine. She’s beautiful yes, she’s whimsical yes, but she also takes charge and does her thing. When she goes to save her father, she drops everything and goes. I loved it. I loved how she stood up to Gaston, she didn’t stroke his ego, she just said no. Her love for books was evident, it wasn’t just holding one, she really loved them. I wonder if some of these aspects came easy to Emma being that she played Hermione Granger (who in some ways is very similar to Belle) and is very similar to Belle herself. When it came time for her to be graceful, she could. The dance was beautiful and she took charge there as well. I liked her quite a bit. She handled her emotional moments very well, and she had control of her eyebrows lol, sometimes Emma Watson does the eyebrow dance and it was under control here lol.
  • Dan Stevens as The Beast/The Prince. 
    • We see him as the Prince in the beginning, the douchebag Prince. It was quite entertaining to see that, I’m glad they did that, also by showing us that he was an adult when he was cursed. I know his age is still in question from the animated film** but he’s obviously well aware of his actions here.
    • The Beast: We spend the most time with him in his form and he was so sassy. I grinned like an idiot during a lot of his dialogue (I’ll talk about his appearence later). He was mean and he was course and unrefined. His shock at Belle wanting to take her father’s place I thought was well done, as his experience with fathers wasn’t good. He’s really only mean in the beginning and I thought Dan Stevens did a great job in portraying that, even if his expressions were CGI’ed, his eyes were a great catalyst for his acting. Some of the nuisances he would do, like his expressions or his movements were great additions to the character. He also had great chemistry with Emma Watson both as a Beast and a man later.
  • Luke Evans as Gaston. I like Gaston because he’s a villain in the animated film, but I do NOT like him as a character because he’s terrible. However, I actually liked him in this film. Luke Evans was so charismatic that he was more on the thin line of being a villain more than giving off that impression the entire time. I think it helped that he wasn’t a gigantic muscular dude. His humor was on point, his facial expressions when he’s admiring himself, when Belle turns him down, when he gets angry but is calmed down by LeFou, it was on point. I quite enjoyed him. Plus, I don’t think I ever disliked Luke Evans in a film. It’s easy to see that he enjoyed playing this part. When he did go into full villain mode, he was a scary dude. His demeanor changed and that makes for a scary villain.
Supporting Characters. Oh man. I’m going to go through them as quickly as I can.
  • Ewan McGregor as Lumiere. I think he was my favorite. I read about Ewan McGregor being worried about the accent, I’m not French but I thought it sounded fine. At least for the type of film and character. I liked that he was a little man who could make his form look like a candelabra, it helped him move differently and quickly. His take charge and almost busy body attitude makes him the orchestrator for a lot of things. Lumiere was also the source of a lot of humor in the castle. He’s so romantic and carefree it’s hard to dislike his character. His mocking impressions were great. The emotion at the end… *sniffs*
  • Sir Ian McKellan as Cogsworth. He was great. He’s the head of the household but he’s totally afraid of The Beast. It’s hilarious see him to talk about him to the others but when he thinks he’s around, how scared he gets. McKellan has a great voice and at first it might be odd but it fit the character.  He also had some dry humor going on which I love.
  • Emma Thompson as Mrs. Potts. She’s amazing. Her Mrs. Potts is the same in her motherly attitude towards everyone but don’t make her mad, she will put you in your place. I loved it. The voice Thompson put on for her showed that she was mostly likely a village woman and obviously a servant. I loved her relationship with Chip and how she was the one who tried to guide the others.
  • Kevin Kline as Maurice. He was great, definitely can see in a way where Belle gets her “oddities” and headstrong personality from. Kevin Kline is great in this role. He is an active father and will do anything for his daughter.
  • Josh Gad as LeFou. He’s very different from his animated counter part, which was fine with me, all that controversy for this character didn’t bother me. He’s funny, he didn’t overdo it which I think he can do a lot. The little nuances he did for this character was great and cute.
  • Audra McDonald as Madame Garderobe. A renowned opera singer who gets turned into a wardrobe. I bet Audra McDonald had fun in the recording studio for her character, she sings more than she actually talks and she’s hilarious. Being that as the petals fall they become less and less human, she has a hard time staying awake. It’s great. Also, Audra McDonald is a QUEEN. Her voice!
  • Gugu Mbtha-Raw as Plumette. Also has a French accent, I think it’s really just her and Lumiere which was fine. She was flirty, sassy and romantic. I also loved her reveal at the end, it was so cute.
  • Nathan Mack as Chip. Aww so cute! He definitely seemed a bit older than his animated counterpart, but he was cheeky and used his saucer as a skateboard, which like Lumiere, helped him move around quicker.
  • Stanley Tucci as Maestro Cadenza. I love Stanley Tucci, he’s a chameleon. He was a cool character, we don’t see tons from him but a talking piano, that’s awesome. He has some great scenes at the end with the mob.
The Costumes. Jacqueline Durran’s costumes are to die for! The attention to detail on them just blew my mind as I watched the film. I liked the little pockets on Belle’s apron, I liked the detail on the inside of her cloak. The red/pink dress she wears during the “Something There” was so beautiful. I know a lot of people didn’t like her dress but I loved it from the first time I saw it. It pays homage to the original dress but it puts it’s own spin on it. I’m not a big ruffle person but the way the dress moved, it worked. I read it took 12,000+ hours to make that dress. It was beautiful on Emma Watson. The Beast wears this tattered cloak and it’s so haunting and scary, it shows that he is still in his angry and pity mindset. Later, he wears this long blue cloak and OMG I wanted that thing. His suit during the dance was also beautiful and the suit at the end. The attention to detail on the clothes. Gaston’s red coat in his iconic “Gaston” scene was also beautifully made, I want that too. All of the clothes, all of the nods to the French fashion was there.
The Relationships. This is going to be broken down a bit.
  • Belle and the Beast. Of course this is the most important one and I thought they handled it well. They added a bit more for them to do, more conversations and interactions. We can see the influence she has on him. The looks they give each other, it’s really cute. I thought Emma and Dan had great chemistry, even with the CGI Beast lol. The ending is also really cute.
  • Belle and Gaston. He was definitely persistent and it was funny. However, I liked the fact that she always just said “no” or turned him down without stroking his ego. I also liked how she stood up to him during the climax. It showed her strength even more.
  • Belle and Maurice. Such a great father/daughter relationship. He really loves her and would do anything for her, and same for her. She wastes no time in going to him both times. The love they have for each other was evident, I thought Watson and Kline had some great chemistry.
  • Gaston and LeFou
  • The Beast and his servants. Always a humorous relationship. They are his family, no matter how badly he may have treated them. They were afraid of him but they also stood up to him quite a bit, mostly Mrs. Potts and Lumiere. The scene before the dance was a great scene with all of them.
  • Lumiere and Plumette. So cute and romantic. I also loved the interracial aspect of it.
  • Lumiere and Cogsworth. Of course, a great friendship. It’s easy to see that they are polar opposites but Cogsworth respects Lumiere’s carefree attitude and Lumiere appreciates Cogsworth’s loyalty and sarcastic comments. The ending scene when the last petal falls, quite emotional.
  • Mrs. Potts and Chip. I’m glad the whole idea of Mrs. Potts have 50 million children was “addressed” here, lol but they were adorable. Her frantic-ness at the end. This mother loves her son and I don’t think she was too old to have a kid that young. *rolls eyes*
  • Maestro Cadenza and Madame Garderobe. Another interracial that I loved. They were separated due to the curse as she’s a wardrobe and he’s a piano but the end lol. He misses her voice and she misses his music, perfect couple.
The Production Design. The sets on this film are so beautiful. The Beast’s castle is so large, with it’s many twists and turns and the attention to detail with the French inspired architecture. The way it continues to change as the rose continues to wilt is pretty amazing. The layout of his entire land, whenever there was an aerial view of the castle grounds, it was so breathtaking. The town is also nicely done, it looks like a small town, closed in which helps adds why Belle wants to leave it. The forest, the way the snow looked in the forest, and even how it looked at the castle. So beautiful.
The Character Design. I’ll mention this again later, but I liked how the supporting characters looked in their looks. I thought with Lumiere being a little man who can manipulate his appearence to look like a candelabra was smart and unique. It allows him to move quickly and more. Cogsworth was so intricately designed. I understand that some found Mrs. Potts and Chip to be creepy, but seeing them on the screen, I don’t think so. Definitely French designed tea set. I was a little wary about Plumette’s look but I ended up loving it. I liked the fact that she could fly, it made sense with all of her feathers and it made it easier for her to maneuver and do her thing, she was also really beautiful. The wardrobe, seeing her talk was kind of weird but awesome at the same time, her design was great and the piano as well. All of the trinkets in the house were very well designed.
The Music. Alan Menken returned to help with the music once again, especially as the iconic songs were slightly changed in their arrangement and he wrote four new songs for the film. I liked that The Beast had a song, it helped give a bit more insight to him at the moment and it was my favorite song actually. There’s a song that the main people in the castle sing and it was very sweet. It reminded me of “Human Again” but it was a slow and sweet song. Belle also has a song in a particular part of the film, I liked the song. Maurice also has a quick short song. The other songs were also very well done and I think the actors did well in the singing of them. I was impressed.
  • The Musical Numbers. So this film is definitely a musical and for the most part, they are very similar to how they are in the animated film which isn’t a bad thing, but they do put their own updated spin on it. In the “Belle” number, the town is smaller so it feels a bit more suffocating and I don’t think there is a Bookshop, I think that dude was the Priest but just happened to have books that Belle could borrow. I also loved how Gaston and LeFou were outside the town (which makes sense if they were hunting lol). “Be Our Guest” was also well done, it was colorful, it wasn’t as big as it could have been but I thought it was sweet and they did a good job. “Something There” allowed for us to see more interactions with Belle and the Beast and it was cute and had some funny moments. “Gaston” was definitely the most fun and “Beauty and the Beast” was lovely.
The story/Updates. So the story is the same as the animated film, obviously, they take some notes from the original story in which Belle asks Maurice to bring her a rose from his travels. I love this story. It’s not Stockholm Syndrome, especially not even here because she definitely could have escaped, was going too and she even leaves.
  • The updates (without spoiling): I’m just gonna name a few, I think a lot of the updates helped answer questions the original left a question.
    • The fact that Maurice was a music box crafter.
    • Belle made her own washing machine and wanted to teach girls how to read.
    • Maurice’s reactions to the castle.
    • Some extra details in the opening scene, about why the town doesn’t seem to know about the castle and prince.
    • A few more conversations between Belle and the Beast in understanding each other
    • How Belle got the Beast back to the castle after the wolf attack
    • A conversation between Gaston and Maurice
    • LeFou’s character
The Transformation Scene. I was worried on how they were going to do this scene and I thought it was handled well. It’s ultimately the same, but how it gets started is a bit different and I don’t mean with Belle’s confession. There’s a nice musical beat and BOOM. It was even better the second time around. Of course the close up shot of his eyes is always important. Funny thing: When I saw it the first time, and Dan Stevens did his dramatic turn around, my friend and little sister said “Ooooo” and “OH he’s hot. Oh yes” lol. When I saw it the second time, and he turned around my two friends said “Gaston is way cuter” and I just cracked up. I find Dan Stevens to be very handsome and I love his eyes and I think Luke Evans is also very handsome, two very different looking men.
Cons:
The Beast’s Animation. Overall, I liked his look but there were a few times in the film where it looked weird. Sometimes when there was a wide shot where he see his full body, it was strange. Also, in his solo song, he’s like bounding around, it looked kind of weird at times. Also, it would have been nice if he was a bit bigger, in terms of width, like his chest could have been a bit bigger. Sometimes, his height seemed to change, it might have been the camera angles but at times he looked maybe a foot or two taller than Belle and other times he look huge! It was inconsistent.
The Opening Scene. So, I appreciate the opening in that we get to actually see the Prince be a jerk, but it was also a little weird. I think it was the narration that wasn’t doing it for me. I think it would have been better to just see it without the narration attached.
The Paris Scene. So there’s a scene in the film, it’s about the halfway mark that I could have done without. It was cute and sweet and I liked Belle’s song but I also don’t think it was necessary. It seemed to be a deleted scene that was left in the film.
Overall, I loved this movie. It was easy for me to separate this from the animated film. I think the animated film is the best Disney movie to date and I was excited to hear about what they were planning to do. I was excited and I think my expectations were met, it didn’t exceed them but met them. I expected a good film, with a new spin on the original and I think I got that. If you love the original and think it should never be touched then you might not like this and should not see it. If you refuse to have an open mind, then don’t bother. If you love the original but are curious to see what they do, then check it out. The original will never go away, it will always be superior and it will always be there.
Beauty and the Beast did a lot of things right, the casting was well done, everyone was great in their roles, their respective looks and songs were good and I enjoyed watching and listening. I think Emma Watson and Dan Stevens had great chemistry and I think Ewan McGregor and Luke Evans were standouts in their roles. The music holds up, even with slightly new arrangements it’s still beautiful and I enjoyed the new songs. I loved the look of the film, the costumes, the production design, the attention to detail given to everything is so evident to me that I think this film will be a contender in some technical awards Oscar season. It does have it’s missteps, I think the animation of the Beast goes in and out on looking real at times, the opening narration just didn’t do it for me, I wish it was just the scene, the extra plot scene could have been put on the deleted scenes floor.
With that said… I still loved this movie.
 Rating: 4. 27 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Beauty and the Beast? Have you seen the original? If not, what’s wrong with you? What did you think of the remake? Comment below in the comments and let me know!
My Disney Live Action Remake List from Best to Least Best:
  1. Jungle Book
  2. Beauty and the Beast
  3. Cinderella
  4. Maleficent
I don’t count Pete’s Dragon as I never saw the original.
**I almost forgot about this, but in reference to my asterisks above, I wanted to mention about the Prince’s age in the animated film. I never thought that he was a child, I always assumed that time stopped. I mean, thinking about it now, it’s odd because that would mean did the town age? Or…? But the stained glass windows in the opening of the film didn’t look like a child whereas I guess in the Enchanted Christmas, he was a kid. I don’t know… it’s always weird to me. So I’m glad they made sure we knew he was an adult in this film.

Kong: Skull Island (2017) Review

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Summary: A team of scientists explore an uncharted island in the Pacific, venturing into the domain of the mighty Kong, and must fight to escape a primal Eden.
Pros:
Cast and characters. For the most part, I liked everyone. The actors do a good job in their roles, their characters are likable.
  • Tom Hiddleston as James Conrad. He is a former British Special Air Service Captain but is now seeking “mercenary” work from others. He gets mixed up in the expedition due to the amount of money he’s offered. We spend a lot of time with him, we trust him, he knows what he’s doing and wants to keep everyone safe but respect the land they’re on. He’s smart and cunning in navigating. I love Tom Hiddleston, it’s great seeing him in an action role like this (yes he’s Loki but that’s different), he’s very charismatic and likable. He also has great timing with humor. Also good chemistry with the other characters. The 70s look good on him.
  • Brie Larson as Mason Weaver. A photojournalist and peace activist, she joins the expedition for her own reasons. She’s sassy and feisty. I think someone thought she was a man due to her name and everyone’s surprised at her addition but she holds her own. Just like the women in King Kong films, she has a few run ins with Kong. I love Brie Larson, she’s such a great actress and can be really funny and dramatic. I thought she had great chemistry with Hiddleston and surprisingly Kong lol. The 70s look good on her.
  • Samuel L. Jackson as Preston Packard. A US Army Lieutenant Colonel and leader of the Sky Devils helicopter squadron. His group is hired to fly. His character is interesting. He completely takes a left turn that I wasn’t expecting, at least not from him. So without spoiling, that’s all I’ll say. Sam Jackson is a great actor, and he’s great here, as he always is. He’s kind of scary himself. He knows how to make some creepy faces lol.
  • John C. Reilly as Hank Marlow. A lieutenant whose spent 28 years stranded on the island since WWII. He knows the land and the creatures and has befriended the natives on the island. He’s hilarious, eccentric and it’s obvious to see that being there for so long has messed with him, but he holds it well. I don’t always find Reilly funny, but I really liked him here. His character is that kooky person people find whose been alone for years and sometimes they can be super annoying, but I think Reilly manages to prevent that. He’s probably a favorite character.
Secondary Characters.
  • John Goodman as Bill Randa. I might have put him in a leading character spot but I think he belongs here more. I think John Goodman is a great actor and sometimes he is so scary. He kind of has that going here, but for a different reason. He knows something and won’t be honest about it. That makes him scary and dangerous. Goodman does good with that here, it’s a smaller role, but he sets everything in motion.
  • Thomas Mann as Slivko. I like Thomas Mann. He’s part of Samuel L. Jackson’s group. He spends most of the film with Hiddleston, Larson and Reilly. He’s really funny and his loyalty is tested in the film. Mann is likable and his character could come off annoying but I think he manages to keep a balance.
  • Tobey Kebbell as Jack Chapman. He is Packard’s right hand man. That’s all I’m going to say. First time I’ve seen Tobey Kebbell play a role like this. FUN FACT: He also does the motion capture for Kong.
The Directing. I think a lot of choices for direction was fantastic. Certain angles chosen, especially of Kong, especially when it’s lined up with his eyes. Or certain shots of characters. I do this thing where I’ll pretend I’m taking a screen shot if it looks really good. I love a lot of the camera choices.
The Humor. I think with a film like this, it’s really easy to get caught up in the jump scares, the action and what not, but it’s actually pretty funny. Everyone has some great comedic moments. Most of them come from John C. Reilly or the banter between Jason Mitchell and Shae Whigham.
The Cinematography. Oh this film looks so good. When they’re on the island, the shots of Kong with the sun behind him,
The Action. The action is good, fast paced and fun. It definitely keeps you on your toes.
The Music. I really liked the musical score. There are like three songs in particular for Kong himself and they’re beautiful.
The Design of the creatures. I quite liked how the creatures looked in the film. I liked how large Kong was and how emotive his eyes are. He was very large, but definitely easy to tell he’s a gorilla and has his own iconic look. There’s also a bull like creature, that was magnificent. He looked like a mountain. Of course there are others.
Cons:
Hard to connect to the characters. While I liked the characters enough, I do think it’s hard to connect to them outside of their purpose of being in the film. So, me wanting them to live etc, was more on me liking the actor or they were funny characters. There was dialogue sprinkled in there to help with certain characters but I definitely had no idea what their names were most of the time.
Predictable. It’s a different take on the King Kong story we’re used to, which is cool, I liked it but I mean it’s predictable. It’s not hard to figure out what might happen, what’s probably gonna happen.
The story. There’s a lot going on in here. Hidden agendas etc and I feel like some of those story lines didn’t really need to be here. John Goodman’s character has a whole thing going on outside of what’s being presented and I felt like they should have just stuck to that one storyline for him. Everyone doesn’t need to ulterior motives because soon enough Samuel L. Jackson’s character has his own thing going on. I think there should have been one or two driven storylines and they should have stuck to that.
Overall, I enjoyed Kong: Skull Island, I think it was a fun film. I thought it had a great look, the characters were fun for the most part, they were a bit on the shallow end in terms of us knowing them but they’re mostly likable. There are some great directional choices and the  the score is beautiful. I do think it’s a bit predictable and the story has a lot going on but it’s a fun ride.
Rating: 3.00 out 5 stars.
What did you think of Kong: Skull Island? Let me know in the comments below! Don’t forget to like and follow this blog!

Rock Dog (2017) Review

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Summary: When a radio falls from the sky into the hands of a wide-eyed Tibetan Mastiff, he leaves home to fulfill his dream of becoming a musician, setting into motion a series of completely unexpected events.
Pros:
Eddie Izzard as Angus. He’s this rock god of a cat and he’s pretty funny. Most of the laughs came from him. Angus is in a rut, he must write his next single and he just can’t do it. He meets Bodi and they write a song. Angus is also a jerk. He manages to turn it around a bit by the end of the film but he’s one of those characters that you like because they’re a jerk.
Enjoyable/Funny. This is one of those films that while it’s terrible, it’s kind of fun while watching it. I laughed quite a bit while watching it.
Cons:
The Character Relationships. They’re not all bad exactly but, Bodhi meets Darma and her band, they interact twice, and whenever he tries to tell them that someone wonderful has happened, they don’t believe him… but when they find out what he said is true, they’re suddenly his friends. They’ve only talked like twice! How are they friends? There’s not type of growth for us to believe that. Yes, it’s a kid’s film but still, kids aren’t stupid.
The Animation. It’s actually kind of terrible. I can’t recall seeing anything by the company and it unfortunately looks like one of those knock off animated films that I always come across while shelving in the library. It’s not beautiful. It’s clunky, unoriginal and it doesn’t look crisp and well done.
It’s Boring. The climax was lame. The animation is lame, the music is lame, the characters are lame.
The Story. I don’t understand why the whole wolf thing needed to be included. I mean, I get it, sheep and wolves are enemies and dogs protect the sheep… yeah but it’s stupid. The film should have just been about this teenage dog (I guess he’s a teenager) who wants to be a rock star after hearing the famous dude but his father is strict, or wants him to remain in the family business or something and he ventures out on his own to achieve his dreams. That other stuff… was completely unnecessary and it made the film clunky.
Overall, I mean, this movie is for kids but I think studios should stop thinking that kids will watch anything because the kids in my theater, were definitely not paying attention. This is one of those films that is a direct to DVD release but somehow it got put out in theaters. I mean, it’s cute but that’s really about it. The only reason I saw this was because Lionsgate is doing  promotion with Regal Cinemas where if you see their four films, you get the free digital downloads of all four: John Wick: Chapter 2, Rock Dog, The Shack and Power Rangers. My friend and I only care about John Wick and Power Rangers so we made it through Rock Dog and we’ll being seeing The Shack sometime this week.
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Rock Dog? Are you even interested in seeing it? Let me know in the comments below! Don’t forget to like and follow this blog!

Moonlight (2016) Review

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Summary: A chronicle of the childhood, adolescence and burgeoning adulthood of a young black man growing up in a rough neighborhood of Miami.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. We spend the most time with Chiron but thanks to him meeting others, the viewers get to meet them as well. The characters in this film are acted so well, everything is so understated and subtle. They feel like real people.
  • Chiron.
    • Alex R. Hibbert as Little. When we first meet Little, he is running away from bullies. Juan manages to find him, since Little won’t speak, he takes him to his house, feeds him and that sparks a friendship. Alex Hibbert starts off us with this character and he does such a great job setting the tone for this character. He keeps his head down, keeps his lips pursed like he doesn’t like the fact that people keep asking him to speak up. He looks like he has secrets. I thought he did very well.
    • Ashton Sanders as Chiron. I think he was my favorite out of the three who play the character. Being that he’s a teenager, this is usually a tough time in a person’s life as they are growing out of childhood and on the verge of adulthood. Things change. His mother is deeper into her addiction and he’s being bullied at school. Ashton Sanders is so good! He maintains what Alex started, the awkward walking, keeping his head down, the pursing of the lips like he has something to say but can’t say it. His confusion at his sexuality shows in his face later in this particular section and I think Ashton handles all of that very well.
    • Trevante Rhodes as Black. First of all, he is fine lol. Now Chiron is an adult, he is a drug dealer in Atlanta. He still says arms length away from others, just does what he has too. He seems have stayed the same into an adult but this time, instead of hating drugs from an arms length away, he hates them up close. He has a conversation with his mother and he ends up reconecting with an old friend. Trevante Rhodes also manages to maintain the same way about him the other two did, the same type of walk, keeping his head down, the quiet way of talking. He doesn’t purse his lips much anymore (I mean how can he with that stupid grill in his mouth) but everything is the same.
  • Mahershala Ali as Juan. He rightfully won that Oscar. He is drug dealer, who meets Little while he’s running from bullies. He’s kind to him, tries to find where he lives but as Little won’t tell him, he takes him home and cares for him. Even as time goes on, he forms a friendship with him, teaches him to swim and how to make his own path. I really like Mahershala Ali, he knows how to be very subtle and Juan is a man who has to do what he has to do in order to live his life, but when he’s not on the streets, he’s a different person. It’s great the way he takes in Chiron and teaches him many things. His story about living in Cuba and moonlight, I thought came full circle by the end.
  • Naomie Harris as Paula. Deserved her nomination. I read that she filmed her scenes in three days and it does not show. When we first see her, she doesn’t look like she does drugs but it’s easy to see the downward spiral. Each time we see her, it’s a different point in her life, when Chiron is a child, she seems to be abusive and angry at him, as a teenager, she’s a crack addict and only gives him attention for drug money and as an old woman, well things are different. Naomie Harris is such a great actress, she plays each version of this woman so well, it’s almost scary to see the change. She also made me cry as an adult.
  • Janelle Monae as Theresa. Definitely a supporting role, but she’s great and contagious. She is Juan’s girlfriend and becomes close with Chiron as she tries to get him to talk comfortably with her, even though he may not do that as a child, he definitely spends a lot more time with her as a teenager. She is what his mother isn’t and it’s clear to see that she loves him and he loves her. Janelle Monae is so likable in this role, the sassiness, her strength creates such a great supporting character.
  • Kevin
    • André Holland as Adult Kevin. He reaches out to Black, he is now a Chef in a dinner in Miami and life hasn’t gone according to plan but he is content for the most part. He and Black have a conversation, they learn more about each other as adults. Kevin does most of the talking and it’s quite interesting to watch their interaction. I felt like Andre Holland was a bit miscast in the role, he seemed to old to play this role, Black couldn’t be more than 25 and Andre seemed much older. Perhaps it was a well thought out choice due to what his life was like. He did a good job though.
    • Jharrel Jerome as Teen Kevin. He called Chiron “black” and I wouldn’t say they friends like they were when they were kids, but ya know teenage boys. He talks up being a ladies man, though I think he was just doing it on purpose, and later he and Chiron have a nice conversation. However, he us forced to choose a side when Chiron’s bullies want to “haze” him. I liked him, probably in the same way I liked Ashton Sanders. He was charismatic and kind of likable, he played teenage Kevin the way I would think a kid like him would grow into. Seems to be well off, used to getting his way and no one messes with him. Yeah, good job Jharrel (fun fact: he will be in the film adaptation of Walter Dean Myer’s Monster).
    • Jaden Piner as Child KevinCons. He is Little’s best friend, he’s small like Little but unlike Little, he uses it to his advantage and makes himself seem big. It seems like he comes from a better off family. He teases Little but he also is someone that Little obviously looks up too. Jaden Piner is adorable, he reminds me of Journey Smullet-Bell, like her twin brother (when she was a child). Some child actors can be good and some can be really bad and I think he was in the middle.
Tenderness. I think this film has a lot of tender moments between characters which I thought was beautiful and it isn’t always romantic tenderness. It’s two characters, or even three, who care so much about each other that they created this bond that it’s so easy to feel from the screen. I think it’s great, especially when at times black people can be shown as being sexual beings when it comes to love/romance and this didn’t make a big deal out of it.
Subtle. I liked the fact that a lot of things are shown or discussed in a subtle way. Nothing is made a big deal out of, it feels human.
The Transitions. At first, I was confused because it felt like the chapter for Little just ended, but I noticed that it was a pattern and each pattern was the same but a different color to signify a new time period. I thought it was quite unique.
The ending. I do think it comes full circle, at least in the very last shot we see. We hear Juan talk about it in the beginning and then the way the film ends I was like, wow that’s so awesome.
Cons:
Questions. I wouldn’t really make this be against the film because it’s probably an art choice, but considering the way the film is edited, we don’t know what happened in between those times when Chiron grows up. It leaves a lot of questions and it’s kind of frustrating, especially when it’s referenced but there isn’t really an explanation. I like the showing and not telling so much but when it’s not there at all, I want to know! Tell me!
Cliche. This isn’t really a terrible thing but I do think that outside of the way the film is told, and the acting, I do think characters like these aren’t necessarily new and fresh. We’ve seen them before.
Overall, I loved this film. It’s amazing. I had minor problems with it and as soon as it was over, I knew and wanted it to win the Oscar for Best Picture. I know a lot of people don’t like it, or refuse to see it due the nature of the film, but I think it’s important that a film like this was made because this does represent people, even men in the Black community. Besides, it may not apply to your life, but it’s a wonderfully made and well acted film.
Rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars. 
Have you seen Moonlight? Now that it’s won Best Picture at the Oscars are you more interested or not interested? Let me know in the comments below. Don’t forget to comment, like and follow this blog!

Get Out (2017) Review

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Summary: A young African-American man visits his Caucasian girlfriend’s mysterious family estate.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. This movie has it’s special group of people and legit all of them were interesting people and I think the actors did a great job. I can only go into so much detail without spoiling the characters in the film.
  • Daniel Kaluuya as Chris Washington. First of all, I think he is so good looking. I thought he looked good in Sicario but anyways, he’s really good here. His character is into photography and he seems to be a chill dude. He’s a bit nervous to be meeting his girlfriend’s parents, especially in knowing that her family is white. As he in their world, he looks a bit uncomfortable but is really good at keeping it together. But he begins to feel like he’s losing it and it’s so great. I think Daniel does such a great job at maintaining a nice young man persona (which he is) as well as being uncomfortable with being around white people. The way he is during the get together, he is trying to be a team player but things are weirdly happening. He reacts the way I know I would. I also appreciate his strength in the later scenes.
  • Allison Williams as Rose Armitage. Rose is the “girl next door” girlfriend. It was interesting how she was able to stand up to the police officer who questioned Chris (even though he was driving), definitely privilege there. She has a big smile, seems really sweet and doesn’t seem to be like her weird family at all. Allison Williams works here, she has the big smile that is inviting and welcoming, and as the film progresses we get to see more and she’s great in the role.
  • Catherine Keener as Missy Armitage. She is Rose’s mother, a Psychiatrist, tries to help Chris quit smoking using hypnosis (something he is not interested in), but she seems to be diagnosing him every time they talk. It’s weird. They have an interesting run in at night. I like Catherine Keener, she has an interesting voice and she works well here, she’s very unsettling in a therapy kind of way.
  • Bradley Whitford as Dean. First of all, this guy looks so weird with facial hair, I didn’t realize who he was until today. Anyway, he’s that guy who feels the need to explain that “I would have voted for Obama for a third term”, or finds a way to try to placate Chris’s uncomfortableness. Especially in reference to Walter and Georgina. He’s that guy who a black person would roll their eyes at because they’re trying so hard. He’s also a brain surgeon. He wasn’t as bad as “unsettling” as the mother, but he was up there. I think Bradley Whitford (who I also like most times) plays the part well, the lame dad, who thinks he’s hip but it’s more annoying than anything.
  • Caleb Landry Jones as Jeremy Armitage. I think he was the weirdest. He’s Rose’s younger brother and he obviously makes Chris uncomfortable due to his assumptions, especially about him being good in and liking sports (which Chris is meh towards), or the fact that he has a great physique for MMA. He even tries to get Chris to do some moves with him (so weird). I think he was the most unsettling of them all considering how he would stand in the background, or corners just looming over everyone, not to mention, he wouldn’t do something to his hair and Caleb has really lovely red hair lol. I think Caleb was perfect in this role because he is totally weird.
  • Marcus Henderson as Walter. He is the groundskeeper of the Armitage estate. Chris sees him and Dean tries to explain that Walter helped out when his parents and that they didn’t want to let him go (same with Georgina). He is really quiet, stares oddly and when Chris goes to introduce himself, Walter talks like he’s from another time period. He also does that creepy run (you see it in the trailer). Dude is so creepy. I think Marcus Henderson plays that really well too, to be able to maintain weirdness about the character.
  • Betty Gabriel as Georgina. I only saw her in that one movie that I will not name as I hated it but she was one of the few things I liked about that movie. She’s so pretty to me but Georgina is the Armitage’s maid and she pops up out of nowhere so many times (the only time I actually jumped was because of her). She also seems to have a fascination with herself in the mirror and she interacts with Chris a bit and every time she does it’s so weird. Good job Betty, you are officially scary lol.
  • LilRel Howery as Rod Williams. He is Chris’s best friend, the funny one. He’s the one who tells Chris not to go to the country with those white people (lol) and he’s the one who solves a lot of mystery on his own. TS MUTHAF**** A lol. I liked this dude. Everyone needs to have a friend like him.
  • Lakeith Stanfield as Andre “Logan” King. I think Lakeith is a great actor, I first saw him in Short Term 12 and he was pretty great here too. We see two versions of him. That’s all I’ll say. He does a great job too.
The Direction. There are so many good shots in this film. I can’t even, especially in the last act of the film. All of the scenes that are in Chris’s head, or flashbacks to his childhood, they’re all handled so well. Jordan Peele knew what he was doing, I was pleasantly surprised. The feeling of claustrophobia presented in a lot of scenes, or unease, or uncomfortably, it all depends on the choices made by the director. Two thumbs up.
The Story. On the surface, this story is about an interracial couple going to the white family’s estate. It travels through how uncomfortable Chris feels in this situation even if he loves his girlfriend. However, there is something sinister going on and I kind of figured something along the lines of what was going on, but it ended up being a step further than what I thought. It’s scary and honestly something that in a weird way could be considered funny but it’s scary for any black person to think about happening to them.
The Imagery. While the thrill factor is there, the imagery used in the film helps boost those moments. I don’t want to go into it too much because it gives things away but the things shown really help put certain things happening into perspective.
The Horror/Thriller Factor. I wouldn’t necessarily say this movie is a horror film but more of a psychological thriller. There are few jump scares but I only really got scared once. I don’t think it’s really scary but more haunting. The scene between Chris and Missy in her office, that’s the first really unsettling scene because it’s weird. Then when Chris is meeting all of the white neighbors another time because the camera is shifting between all of the people and it’s like overwhelming for Chris and for the viewers. Then of course the entire third act… again, I wasn’t scared but more like O.O. It’s so great.
The Message. This movie is not out to offend anyone, but I’m sure it’ll make a lot of people upset. It’s just exploring the fear that black people have when being a white man’s world, which is legit. It’s extreme but that’s the point. The people in this film aren’t Neo-nazi people, or whatever, but are nice people, with nice lives etc. but they represent those people who make life uncomfortable for black people while also admiring the best parts of that person. It addresses many levels of racism.
Cons:
The ending. This is really my only con and it doesn’t knock the movie down any bit for me. I think the ending is solid but it leaves so many questions unanswered. It can be argued that that’s the point, which is fine, sometimes, but I want more answers. Why would they make sure it was actually over before doing what they did? What about the other people in the wealthy neighborhood? I NEED TO KNOW!
Overall, I love Get Out and it was so surprising to me. I figured it was going to be good from the beginning but it really surprised me with how good it was. Jordan Peele created a film where the black man is not the villain, he is the victim but he is an active victim. He has created a film where it shows the fears that black people feel when surrounded by white people, as well as addressing the microagressions directed towards black people. It’s really an interesting film. The direction was great, the film looked nice and clean while including a lot of imagery that helps boost the way the film can be viewed as well as the story. It’s a very intriguing and unique story. The actors were well cast in their roles, they were fully realized. I love this film.
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Get Out? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments below! Don’t forget to like and follow this blog!
P.S. Jordan Peele is married to a white woman… is he crying for help? Do you need help Jordan? lol (I’m just kidding).

John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017) Review

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Summary: After returning to the criminal underworld to repay a debt, John Wick discovers that a large bounty has been put on his life.
Pros:
Cast and Characters.
  • Keanu Reeves as John Wick. I don’t care what anyone says. I love me some Keanu Reeves. He is awesome. He will always be awesome. John Wick is an ex-hitman and this picks right up from the first one. He doesn’t like when you take his stuff. He’s stoic, and he doesn’t talk often, when he does, you listen. He has anti stormtrooper aim. He’s the Boogeyman and everyone knows his name. He is amazing with a gun, he is physically amazing and he handles his business. He doesn’t want to be in this life, and keeps trying to stay away but something just keeps bringing him back in. Without spoiling anything… John Wick is awesome.
    • Keanu Reeves did most of his stunts himself and the man is in his 50s!! That’s awesome! I don’t think he is the best actor in the world, but he works in this film. He is John Wick. Being quiet, mostly working with his body and his actions is what makes John Wick really cool. Plus, he still sounds like Ted “Theodore” Logan sometimes with his delivery that makes some lines funny but I think that helps because some of the dialogue is so funny that only Keanu can say it. I totally don’t think about Ted when I see you in movies Keanu (if you just so happen to see this review).
  • Common as Cassian. When they said his name I couldn’t help but to think about Rogue One lol. Anyway, he was really cool too. He starts off as a bodyguard to a politician but goes out for revenge for John Wick. He has some really good action scenes with John. He seems to be stoic like John but a bit angrier in some instances. I think Common did a good job, I quite enjoyed him in this role.
  • Other Characters. We come in contact with a lot of people, Ian McShane plays like the head honcho of their Assassin organization, Riccardo Scamarcio is someone from John’s past, Ruby Rose as this assassin hitman. We get to meet a lot of people. They all have some awesome scenes.
Action. The action in this film is so good. It’s so easy to tell that it was well choreographed and that everyone involved worked really hard to make it look good and effortless. I think it worked so well. The action has been upped from the first film which makes that part of it better than the first. If you love action films with great fight scenes, this is your movie. It’s impossible to not be pulled in by the action.
Fight Scene with Common. There are a couple of scenes were John and Cassian face off and I just have to say that every time they do, it’s so awesome. There is a scene where they are walking in a train station or something, and they are trying to shoot at each other, but they keep hiding their gun from the civilians, it’s hilarious. Common really put himself out there in this physically demanding role, I was so impressed and surprised with him. He held his own against Keanu Reeves when it came to the physicality of their characters. I think all of those moments between the two are standout moments.
The Assassin World. So I love it when films create their own mythology or lore for their world and this film is no different. We got a taste of it in the first film with the Hotel, but in this film we get to see so much more of it. The Continental is like “holy ground”, you don’t conduct business there and it’s considered a sanctuary to the people involved, that’s pretty cool. It’s gets even cooler. We get to see John fully in this world and what the rules are. It’s pretty expansive. It’s like the mob but without the dramatic sit downs.
Ending Scene. You’ll know exactly what I’m taking about, but John goes to meet Ian McShane in Central Park and… that’s all I’ll say. Just know that I started to get stressed out even more and it was the end of the movie lol. It’s so unsettling and great.
The Directing. A lot of the choices chosen, especially during the action scenes were great. We could ACTUALLY see the fight scenes and follow what was happening. It’s so plain to see that it’s the actors actually doing these stunts because you can see them, there aren’t shaky cams or jump cuts, it’s straight forward and in your face. AWESOME.
Cons:
The emotional connection. I had to think about this for a moment, but I think the emotional weight that held the first film is gone here. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, but without spoiling why John gets involved again, it prevents the viewer from having an emotional connection to him again. That may not be very important but considering that it was there in the first film, it would have been nice if it crossed over.
Over the top moment. There is this particular moment towards the end, where we see just how many people in involved in this world and there’s this one part, that while it was awesome, it was impossible lol. I can imagine some people going “really? come on!”
Ruby Rose. I wanted to like her character because she seemed like she was really cool and outside of a few moments, she was bland. A bit overdramatic and one of the last scenes she’s in, wow lol. Maybe she’s not an action person.
Overall, I loved this movie. It’s so fun, the action was great and was directed very well. Keanu Reeves owns this role and is so awesome in it. Knowing that he does his own stunts adds to the cool factor of the film and his role. Unfortunately, it is very similar to the first film so it doesn’t necessarily feel original but I think that’s okay for the type of movie it is, especially since the stakes are definitely upped here and the action is so much better. I don’t think it’s trying to really be anything completely new, it just wants to be a good time, which it is.
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen John Wick: Chapter 2 yet? Are you interested? What are your thoughts on this film? Is it better than the first one? Tell me what you think in the comments below!
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