CWM

Archive for July, 2013|Monthly archive page

Wolverine Slashes His Way Straight To My Heart

In Movies on July 30, 2013 at 3:25 pm

Image

“The Wolverine” directed by James Mangold finds our man with claws a few years after “X-Men: The Last Stand”. Wolverine, Hugh Jackman, is living a life away from humanity because, well, he’s just kind of sick of humanity and death. Despite this, a young girl by the name of Yukio, played by Rila Fukushima, seeks out Wolverine, offering him solace and a chance to say goodbye to an old friend. This old friend, played by Hal Yamanouchi, was an individual Wolverine saved during World War II who has since become quite rich and powerful forming the company Yashida, after his own name, and offers Wolverine the ability to be human and normal. During this visit, Wolverine also encounters Yashida’s granddaughter, Mariko, played by Tao Okamoto, his own son Shingen, played by Hiroyuki Sanada, and Viper, Yashida’s personal doctor, played by Svetlana Khodchenkova. While in Tokyo, Wolverine becomes enmeshed in the Yakuza, family politics, and samurai warriors. In short, this movie was a huge improvement on “Wolverine: Origins” offering a darker version of everyone’s favorite X-Men. Hugh Jackman will forever be known as Wolverine and this role will only help solidify him as this iconic character.

 

One thing I thoroughly enjoyed about this movie, was how it logically flowed from one end to the other. I compared this to “Star Wars” when talking about it with my friends following the movie. Luke Skywalker is shown as a farmer in the beginning of “A New Hope” and is suddenly piloting space ships by the end of it. To look at these instances back to back, it seems like a huge leap, but the movie itself makes sense and you understand how Luke got to where he was. “The Wolverine” begins with Wolverine as a reclusive woodsmen in Alaska and then displays Wolverine slicing and dicing on a bullet train in Japan. Every choice that Wolverine makes to get there, makes sense and this movie truly benefits from it.

 

The darker tone also elevates this movie, because, well, in my opinion, I like darker, grittier, more realistic movies. I like seeing Wolverine struggle with the death of Jean Grey. I like seeing him ram an arrow through a hunter’s hand, and I also like seeing Wolverine pushed to his limits. I like when superheroes struggle and I think this movie benefitted greatly from that.

 

I also really like Yukio. I thought she was a great character who was quite funny and offered a bit of a side kick feel to Wolverine, who, as we all know, never really wants one. She was also quite fierce and I do appreciate a female character who can hold her own in the ring.

 

 

 

 

The one thing I did not enjoy about this movie was that it was a bit predictable. I knew what was going to happen and I knew some very key plot points that I wish I would have been wrong about, but, I still enjoyed this film nonetheless. So, if you have a chance, check out this movie. It was action packed, well acted, and fairly dark. 

 

Advertisements

Pacific Rim-Tastic!!!

In Movies on July 15, 2013 at 10:57 am

 

pacific-rim-drift-50

I have been tracking this movie since its inception and I have been incredibly pumped about it. Seriously. Like really really looking forward to this movie. When, I first heard that the numbers weren’t going to be strong for it, I was disappointed because well this movie sounded like it would be a Blockbuster hit and for some reason it wasn’t being predicted as such. It was what I wanted Transformers to be and that movie was playing every half an hour at my theater, but for some reason this movie had only two show times, which is very concerning. Despite this, I recommend you check this movie out. THIS, will be a movie I buy, especially if the director’s cut includes more robot fighting.

“Pacific Rim” tells the story of David vs. Goliath where instead of David hitting Goliath in the head with a stone and a slingshot, he gets a whole bunch of people together, they build a massive robot, equipped with swords and a plasma cannon, and then they murder Goliath and all of his family. The story begins with a montage courtesy of Charlie Hunnam playing Raleigh Becket. Raleigh tells the story of how monsters emerged from the Pacific and began destroying the major cities of the world. Not one to back down, the human race bands together and created the Jaeger program which is German for fighter. These huge machines battle the monsters in order to keep the rest of us safe. Raleigh is an ace pilot with his brother Yancy Becket, played by Diego Klattenhoff from “Homeland”. Two individuals need to pilot a Jaeger because the human brain can’t synchronize with the robot all by itself. The best fighters are the ones that have the best drift, meaning that they think the same and react in the same way. The story jumps forward to a point where the Jaeger program is being decommissioned because nobody has any money anymore and a giant wall just appears to be a much better idea. Stacker Pentecoast, Idris Elba, asks that Raleigh return to the Jaeger program in order to have one last battle to save humanity once and for all. Raleigh, without a partner, meets Mako Mori, played by Rinko Kikuchi, who he feels in instant connection, drift compatibility, and wishes to pilot his old Jaeger Gypsy Danger with, much to the chagrin of Marshal Pentecoast. The research department consisting of Gottlieb (Burn Gorman) and Newton Geiszler (Charlie Day) believe that a dramatic last stand might not be the best way to defeat these creatures and Newton, AKA Newt, believes that the Kaiju are smarter than the humans think and enlists the help of Kaiju dealer Hannibal Chau (Ron Pearlman) to learn about the creatures in more detail.

There are a lot more characters and Jaegers, but I don’t want to spoil anything for you. In total, this movie was amazing. The fight scenes were fun, the action was great, the acting was a bit clunky.

I’m not sure how Guillermo Del Toro chose Charlie Hunnam or why really because he wasn’t that strong of an actor. There were a lot of flubs and missteps I felt throughout his scenes that could have been better and stronger. I also get a little sick of his Jax swagger that he always walk with. I’m not sure if he has a condition or something and must constantly bounce upon his feet but seriously that man walks like he wants everyone to know how legit he is.

Idris Elba held his own in this film all the way up to his great cancelling the apocalypse monologue. I believe he had a great gasp on his character and that came through completely well. He was strong, stoic, and commanding. Not a lot to ask from an actor as good as Elba, but he still hit the nail on the head.

Charlie Day was alright in this film, again, he too suffered from some missteps and clunkiness. I felt like he understood the character but his delivery was off. Some of his scenes were great, especially the ones with Ron Pearlman, but the scenes he shared with Hunnam could have been better.

Despite the acting glitches, this movie was beautiful to watch. The computer generation was fantastic and brutal, portraying the Kaiju’s teeth breaking while the Jaeger’s arm was getting ripped off. A lot of it was also quite upsetting. These battles often occurred in a very slow and heavy motion and when things went wrong, they were jaw dropping. The same can be said for when things went write.

The only thing I ask of this film is to see more Jaeger fighting the Kaiju. That’s all I ask. I’m hoping the rumors are true that the director’s cut will have more scenes like this and, if this is so, I will definitely be buying it. Please check this movie out I assure that it is much better than “Grown Ups 2” and it is completely worth it.

Ray Is The Man!

In Television on July 5, 2013 at 12:19 pm

Image

“Ray Donovan”  tells the story of well, Ray Donovan, a Hollywood fixer, reminiscent of Michael Clayton, played by George Clooney, in “Michael Clayton”. Live Schreiber stars as the go-to man in Hollywood who will help those who are in a tight fix, especially if those individuals are involved within the seedy underbelly. As the show begins, we see that Ray’s  life is anything but perfect. His wife, Abby, played by Paula Malcomson, doesn’t like the neighborhood that her family is living in, his brother Terry, played by Eddie Marsan, is a boxer suffering from Parkinson’s Disease, his other brother Bunchy, played by Dash Mihok, is struggling with his molestation from a  priest as a child and his father, Mickey, played by Jon Voight, just got out of jail and is determined to be a part of Ray’s life. To make matters worse, a client who Ray is paid to watch is being stalked and Ray just has to intervene only come to find out that he has protected this girl in the past and she really wants to experience Ray sexually. Ashley Ruckers, played by Ambyr Childers comes off as a sex addict who just really wants Ray.

Phew, that’s enough about the plot, let’s get to the show.  The first episode was a bit clunky with a few scenes that didn’t need to be included and a few scenes that could have been flushed out more. I would have liked more of Ray’s company flushed out. There was a scene at a funeral in which another individual approached Ray telling him that Ray did not need public scrutiny. This is known of course, but I felt like I didn’t know who that was. That being said, I do like watching shows in which all the dots aren’t connected, however, I would like a wee bit of assistance. But other than that, I rather enjoyed it.

I liked the idea of Boston transplants to Hollywood, where we will get to see a little dose of Boston pressure on Hollywood types; I mean who doesn’t love seeing an actor who believes he is “the man” get bludgeoned in the face with a bat. I also enjoyed the presence of a back story. I’m interested to see what happened between Ray and his father, which, hopefully, is not resolved in the next few episodes.

I would like Schreiber flushed out more. Some of the best scenes in “Breaking Bad” occur when we see Heisenberg and Walt combine and confront one another in Bryan Cranston’s face. I want to see this. I want to see a calm Ray Donovan crack and just rage. I want to see a Dexter-like freakout when his back is up against the wall.

All in all, I enjoyed this show. I hope my requests are granted and that there is plenty of more violence within this show.