“Do you know what it’s like to live forever?” – Kaulder
SYNOPSIS: The last witch hunter is all that stands between humanity and the combined forces of the most horrifying witches in history. – via IMDB
I didn’t have much hope for this movie, but it didn’t mean that I wasn’t interested in seeing it. For the lols, you know? It was an alright movie, nothing fantastic, but I think of many worse movies to waste time on. This one also had a cast that intrigued me, and they all did a relatively good job. It was good to see Michael Caine again, but disappointing that there is nothing fresh and new to bring to the table with his character. Vin Diesel doesn’t shock, either, and delivers the performance you expect from him as well as the character he represents. It was crazy strange to see him in all the scenes from back in the day. My husband was immensely disappointed when the movie flicked from the past into the present as we know it, he thought he was totally in for something else. However, it isn’t a bad thing that the movie was set in the present because the effects for the past and the sets and all were just… not good at all, but I could understand his disappointment when he thought he was getting this badass film about with hunters with swords and old school and stakes and all that. Nope, it was just not meant to be. Rose Leslie is, of course, beautiful, and holds her own here, though I feel that the role was somewhat beneath her talents. The movie boasts some terribly corny dialogue, this has to be stated. Like, there were times I cringed, times I actually just laughed, and other times I rolled my eyes. I think if people take this seriously, they are going to hate it. If they just want something to pass time and turn their brains off for, you can do worse (though granted, you can do plenty better, too). It’s just an average film that doesn’t break any boundaries, and never strives for brilliance, which is the pitfall. Oh, and some dodgy screenwriting.
“Oh, you think darkness is your ally. But you merely adopted the dark; I was born in it, moulded by it. I didn’t see the light until I was already a man; by then it was nothing to me but blinding!”
This was a brilliant way to conclude a brilliant trilogy! I know that Luke and I don’t necessarily see completely eye to eye on this one, but I still think it is really good. At least we can agree that this trilogy is a stroke of utter genius. Plus, Tom Hardy as Bane. I mean come on, like that wasn’t going to go down phenomenally. Tom Hardy was just an amazing Bane, and his role was simply flawless. Nolan again nailed that perfect mix in the villain, where you wanted to know more about him and see what he was going to do, but still held out that Batman would save the day. Christian Bale is, again, just the most perfect Bruce Wayne/Batman. Seriously. The way he embodies both the billionaire playboy and the Dark Knight? It’s awesome. However, as much as this movie got right, I am not going to pretend there weren’t flaws. The pacing was a little uneven, and there was some incredibly flawed logic thrown in here. For instance, I get that John Blake is intuitive and all, but just guessing Batman’s identity right off the bat was just too much for me, and there is also the issue with Bane knowing exactly where Applied Sciences was, though it is apparently “not on the books” anywhere, and not public knowledge. Also, I am not a fan of Anne Hathaway, and her Catwoman/Selina Kyle is someone that grows on you after multiple viewings, but is still not a character I enjoy a lot at all. Yeah, there were a few niggles, but so what? This movie is ridiculously quotable. My fiancé just doesn’t even know what to do with me… walking up staircases and he doesn’t turn on lights? “Ah, you think darkness is your ally.” Threatening someone? No sweat! “It would be extremely painful… for you.” My one colleague and I communicate a lot in Bane quotes (well, any movie quotes). It’s a problem, we know, yet we have absolutely no plans to change that. But truly now, Bane is awesome on so many levels (and so hot here – the ladies will understand this, though it was unexpected)! And there are so many quotes in this movie that beg to be used. One of my favourite things in this movie was the return of the Scarecrow. I adore Cillian Murphy and I am a big fan of his Dr Jonathan Crane/Scarecrow. I was thrilled to see him given more screentime this time around as opposed to The Dark Knight. Anyway, The Dark Knight Rises is another solid outing from Nolan, is really fun even though it is flawed, and closes one of the greatest trilogies of all time off properly. Go watch these all again immediately. Go on.
PS: I just remembered now – this movie was totally worth every second of my two week self-enforced internet ban prior to its release (I hate getting things late in SA)! It still remains a running joke, and Natasha still can’t believe I underwent something like that for a movie.
“Do I really look like a guy with a plan? You know what I am? I’m a dog chasing cars. I wouldn’t know what to do with one if I caught it!” – The Joker
SYNOPSIS: Batman raises the stakes in his war on crime. With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon and District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman sets out to dismantle the remaining criminal organizations that plague the city streets. The partnership proves to be effective, but they soon find themselves prey to a reign of chaos unleashed by a rising criminal mastermind known to the terrified citizens of Gotham as The Joker. – via IMDB
I get the same thrill every single time I watch it, without fail. Yes, let me rave about it some more. This is truly another masterpiece from Christopher Nolan, and everything was just as it was supposed to be. The cast was fantastic (again), and Heath Ledger brought so much to the table with his performance, though it was heartrendingly his last. The day he died we really did lose one of the greats and I will always maintain this. Hans Zimmer composes us a beautiful and perfect score for this, and it only makes everything you see that much more amazing. He truly is a phenomenal composer, and adds so much to all the projects that he works on. I love that this was also not a simple plot, and it was constantly being changed up. This is the Joker, after all. Nolan gets the villain thing. Again, we know Batman must triumph, but the Joker is so mesmerizing you want to give him free reign of Gotham and just see him tear to it to the ground. The Joker thrives on chaos, no more, no less, and I think The Dark Knight captured that perfectly. The effects were also incredibly well done, and the cast all came together to give us something to chew on. Aaron Eckhart was so good as Harvey Dent, he was the White Knight of Gotham, he was someone you could back, a man of integrity and honour and nerves of steel, and his descent into the underbelly of Gotham and being thrown from his pedestal was intense and painful to watch, and you can get why he would lose his mind. The movie is infinitely quotable, and there are so many cool little things strewn throughout this (the small tidbits) that make it so great (think the Joker’s vegetable peeler between all his knives). I am still a fan of Christian Bale as Batman, he is fantastic, and he really handled the material well for the film, being torn between fighting for Gotham as well as turning himself in to stop the Joker. Bruce’s relationship with Fox is still one of those fantastic ones. I was also a fan of the brief sighting of the Scarecrow, because you all know how much I loved Cillian Murphy in that one. There is so much to rave about in this movie… the action, the script, the performances, the score, the effects, truly. It is a phenomenal watch, and remains my favourite of the bunch just because it is so chaotic, crazy and out there.
“There is nothing to fear, but fear itself!” – Scarecrow
SYNOPSIS: After training with his mentor, Batman begins his war on crime to free the crime-ridden Gotham City from corruption that the Scarecrow and the League of Shadows have cast upon it. – via IMDB
The movie was simply amazing, with great cinematography as well as a brilliant score. This is one of my favourite origin stories, if not my most favourite. I know they have been done to death, but let’s face it, not quite the way that Nolan has done it. The man is a master, and he revolutionized the way we perceived the Batman films after they were butchered by Joel Schumacher. Nolan’s casting choices were dead on. Michael Caine is a perfect Alfred and Gary Oldman’s Jim Gordon is a solid, trusty character. Christian Bale is my favourite Batman because he manages to pull of both Bruce Wayne and the caped crusader, which is something a lot of actors fail to do. ore often than not in superhero movies the actor can either pull off his identity or the alter ego, but so few times are they a success at both. He is pitted against the awesome Scarecrow, and Cillian Murphy was freaking perfect here, he plays the role so well. You cannot forget about Liam Neeson’s Ra’s al Ghul because he was truly a formidable enemy to have. Morgan Freeman’s Lucius Fox is a character that I thoroughly enjoy. The confused love story between Bruce and Rachel is very sad, too. Never overplayed, never not there. I think that the humour that is put forth in this movie is exactly what it has to be: not enough to make it a comedy, but not so greatly lacking that there is nothing but insurmountable drama. The humour that is laced throughout this is hilarious and gets me giggling good and proper, which is fun. The plot is put together well, and manages to stand on its own, and is definitely more than your average hollow action flick. If you have not watched it, where have you been?! For those who have watched it, watch it again and again! A Christopher Nolan Batman marathon is worth it each and every time. The length of the movie was just right, with plenty time to tell us Bruce’s story as well as take us through the motions of becoming the Batman. It did not feel long or dragged out anywhere, so well done! There is so much great stuff going on for this movie, from the awesome score from Hans Zimmer, to the great performances from the cast, a fantastic story and plenty action that looked fantastic… you can’t help but love this movie!
“The suit is the modern gentleman’s armour. The Kingsmen are the new knights.”
– Harry Hart
SYNOPSIS: A spy organization recruits an unrefined, but promising street kid into the agency’s ultra-competitive training program, just as a global threat emerges from a twisted tech genius. – via IMDB
I was so stoked to finally get to this. Kingsman: The Secret Service got so many great reviews, and people who loved Bond loved this, so I just had to know what it was all about. British? Spies? Suits? Colin Firth? I was so in. Unfortunately, I missed it in cinemas, which sucked, but I finally got to seeing this. It has been my only break between exams, and damn it, it was a really great one! I had so much fun with this. I thought Colin Firth was absolutely brilliant here, but then, Firth is always good. He is like the epitome of British class, and I love him for it. He was so well suited here (hehehehe – just leave me and my exam brain be). Aside from him, the rest of the cast was highly entertaining, too, what with Samuel L Jackson stepping in as the odd villain, Michael Caine standing as a fancy head of a fancy, top secret institution, Mark Strong as the great technical mastermind (think Q). I enjoyed the throwbacks there were to the Bond franchises, and I have to admit that Kingsman was funny and fresh. I had so many genuinely good laughs throughout. I am so glad that the glasses were explained, because each time I saw something about this movie and saw Colin Firth in those glasses I was like “WTF”. However, it all makes sense eventually. The unknown for me in here was Taron Egerton, though I think he did a really good job with Eggsy, and I enjoyed his character. The action scenes were so exaggerated and the style in was shot and presented in was different, and I thoroughly enjoyed it, it fit so well with what was going on. There was so much that was predictable (do not take that to mean boring) and then there were also places that were plain down shocking, things happening I didn’t really expect. The extreme Britishness of this movie was just so awesome, though some places didn’t seem quite as convincing as they should have, and I loved the suits that we got to see in here (because suits… come on). The costume design overall was very good (aside from the suits now). There were so many absurd moments laced throughout this movie (think McDonald’s) and there were scenes that were perfectly captured (think the church) and dialogue that got you giggling (think politicians), and bringing them all together you get a fresher comedy than we have seen in quite some time. I had such a blast with Kingsman and highly recommend it – funny, action-filled, entertaining and well shot. What more could you possibly want from a film like this?
“As the sound of the playgrounds faded, the despair set in. Very odd, what happens in a world without children’s voices.” – Miriam
SYNOPSIS: In 2027, in a chaotic world in which women have become somehow infertile, a former activist agrees to help transport a miraculously pregnant woman to a sanctuary at sea. – via IMDB
Well, well, well. I didn’t think I would dislike this movie as much as I did, as much flak as I may get for this. It came in recommended from my neighbour, though he said that there were a few scenes that the whole film basically hangs on. I didn’t realise that this movie had this mad love surrounding it and critical acclaim and all, and I went in relatively blind in terms of plot. It was evident in the first fifteen minutes that I was not going to enjoy it. I hated the camera work, it was jumpy and all over the show and gave me a headache. Then there was the dialogue, and I am sorry, there is nothing that will change my mind on the fact that I thought it was horrendous and awkward and didn’t flow right. There were more irritating characters than you could shake a stick at and the world may love Alfonso Cuarón but this was just not that great. It felt incredibly long, and I was ready to start bawling when I was sure we were nearing the final third, only to find that we were barely halfway. What annoys me is the fact that it had quite a good premise. It was interesting, it had potential, there were things to do and places to go and instead all that potential was squandered, and littered with bizarre and highly unlikable characters and events and things don’t flow properly. I was expecting some awesome plot twists, but none were delivered as promised. It was utterly predictable, and I was underwhelmed by the fact that the infertility issue was never explored more. Also, that ending! After all my pain and suffering, that’s how it went? Ugh. There were a few scenes that were done well and some things that were beautiful, especially when you think about it, but there were others with really flawed logic (such as a dude pushing a car all by himself, containing two women, along a muddy country round with hills). I feel that the cast was underused, as well. Julianne Moore and Michael Caine are big draw names (for me, anyway), and not much was really done with them when you get down to it. I know this is a pretty harsh review, but I was no fan. At all. And then when I saw the rave reviews and ratings coming back I was sure that I had missed something completely, and I did give this movie a fair shot. Overall, I was really hoping for more and instead I was left with this bitter taste of disappointment, and that sucks. Really.
“What is magic? Focused deception. But deception meant to entertain.” – Daniel Atlas
SYNOPSIS: Four magicians each answer a mysterious summons to an obscure address with secrets inside. A year later, they are the Four Horsemen, big time stage illusionists who climax their sold out Las Vegas show with a bank apparently robbed for real. This puts agents Dylan Rhodes of the FBI and Alma Dray of Interpol on the case to find out how they did it. However, this mystery proves difficult to solve even with the insights of the professional illusion exposer, Thaddeus Bradley. What follows is a bizarre investigation where nothing is what it seems with illusions, dark secrets and hidden agendas galore as all involved are reminded of a great truth in this puzzle: the closer you look, the less you see. – via IMDB
You know, reviews for this movie were really mixed. I know my other half asked me a few months ago if we had this to watch, and I put on The Prestige instead, because he had never seen it and I personally feel it’s the best movie of the sort. Naturally, he was head over heels for it. So then recently we decided to finally get to this, which came in highly recommended from people around us. I was pretty neutral on seeing it. Let me tell you, that changed soon enough after starting it. What the hell?! I cannot express to you how disappointed I was. What a ridiculously talented cast, wasted. Completely. I felt that Dave Franco was insanely underused, too, not to mention that Michael Caine was such an important character who suddenly disappeared. You would have thought that Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg coming together again would be a good thing. The holes all over this movie were terrible, it was all just not working for me. The final act is truly what killed this movie for me, in my opinion. The first bit of it is fun, nothing too serious, just alright. Albeit that there is no character development or anything like that and the prerequisite that we don’t ask questions as to how these four magicians suddenly got huge and what they have been doing for the past year. It felt too much like it was trying to be a cross between the Ocean’s movies and something from The Prestige. I love all those movies, I just didn’t like the implementation here too much. I don’t know, there was just too much wrong with this movie for me to like it a lot. I don’t hate it, the first bit was fun, the debunking of the magic, watching the tricks, all that. I liked that aspect of it, because who doesn’t love to wonder a little when all magic is said and done? But then later it just dives. There’s this plot twist that just feels clunky and silly, and illusion gives way to real magic at the end (I don’t know – the cards????). The conclusion of the movie was absolutely freaking ridiculous for me, too. In what world is that how this was going to play out?! Also, something I had a major issue with is the sudden and abrupt cuts between scenes at the best of time, leaving you feeling flustered and confused. I know that my write up is a bit harsher than the score would reflect, but I cannot say that this was good, I cannot say that this was bad. I suppose halfway is about the right place to place this. Meh, this had the potential to be so much more, but it just fell flat.
“We used to look up at the sky and wonder at our place in the stars, now we just look down and worry about our place in the dirt.” – Cooper
SYNOPSIS: In the near future Earth has been devastated by drought and famine, causing a scarcity in food and extreme changes in climate. When humanity is facing extinction, a mysterious rip in the space-time continuum is discovered, giving mankind the opportunity to widen their lifespan. A group of explorers must travel beyond our solar system in search of a planet that can sustain life. The crew of the Endurance are required to think bigger and go further than any human in history as they embark on an interstellar voyage, into the unknown. Coop, the pilot of the Endurance, must decide between seeing his children again and the future of the human race.- via IMDB
This has, undoubtedly, been my most anticipated movie of 2014. I have talked my other half’s ear off about how I cannot wait for it, so naturally I had to go the minute it pitched up here. I was not going to waste a second of my time waiting to get to it seeing how Gone Girl aired for only thirteen days in my useless cinema. If I missed this, someone was going to burn. So, what with all my excitement and anticipation, how did it stack up? I must say that I was extremely impressed. Visually it was absolutely gorgeous, though I didn’t expect anything less on that front. A solid cast carried this story for us, and I thought the performances were great all round. Initially I was not over the moon to see Anne Hathaway in such a large role for it, but she managed to not irritate me to the end. I was thrilled to see Matt Damon, I do so thoroughly enjoy the man, and McConaughey was fantastic as the lead, Cooper. The casting of the actors to play the children (Mackenzie Foy and Timothée Chalamet) was wonderful, and I was especially pleased to see Jessica Chastain and Casey Affleck play their grown counterparts. They fit the bill and were realistic and believable. I know that some people have complained about the dialogue being clunky, and also silly at times with explanations (such as explaining to an astronaut about a black hole in space), but I did not find this to be the case. I enjoyed most of their conversations (though at times it did get a little convoluted), and I was grateful for the explanations sprinkled throughout the movie, and the way it was done. It did not feel like Nolan was treating the cinema-goers like idiots, but rather just ensuring we were all on the same page, and I appreciated that. Naturally Hans Zimmer created a fantastic score to accompany the film, building up tension and emotion in all the right places, and coming in as nothing short of complementary. Interstellar manages to recreate some exceptionally sad emotional scenes, many of them stemming from the tapes that the astronauts are receiving from home in space. There was some humour in this film, which was lovely, but was certainly focused more on the dramatic aspect. I thought the multi-purpose robots were extremely cool, and I felt for Cooper, trying to be the best dad that he could. John Lithgow, as always, plays a wonderful fatherly/grandfatherly figure, and I always like seeing him, no matter how small his part. I do feel that Michael Caine could have been used more, but I understand that there were a lot of characters and time constraints. Interstellar is a long movie, but it is certainly a wonderful journey, even with the flaws that it has – as much as I have sung the praises, there are things that fall a little short of the mark, but were definitely not enough to cripple and ruin this movie for me. Interstellar was well worth the wait, in my opinion, and is a really good movie overall – most importantly, it is an experience. Christopher Nolan has, once again, delivered another stunning film, though this will certainly not be in a high running for taking over and outranking some of his other works.