Review: Black Panther (2018) (Does It Deserve To Be In The Billion Dollar Club?)

(SPOILER FREE)

“You are a good man, with a good heart. And it’s hard for a good man to be a king.”

So, Black Panther has joined the billion dollar club! It’s about time I reviewed it, isn’t it? Yes, I saw it the weekend it came out, but I’ve been otherwise engaged since then. And I wanted to see if time did anything to alter my view of Black Panther. It gave me a chance to step back from the hype surrounding Black Panther. Black Panther is yet another film, like Wonder Woman, upon which criticism is focused on the cultural aspect of the film, rather than the inherent quality of it. Let’s be honest, Wonder Woman hovered between decent and mediocre. Having a superhero film with a black person as the titular hero isn’t anything new, is it? Blade came out twenty years ago! Of course, it’s hard not to focus on the cultural aspect of the film when that’s all that anyone talks about. But my feeling for the film is still what it was after I first watched it. I bloody loved it! Continue reading

Advertisements

Review: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017) (Wonder Woman 2?)

(SPOILER FREE)

“What’s the law on what ya can and can’t say on a billboard?”

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is yet another victim of the instant gratification world we live in. It opened to critical acclaim, yet just as quickly fell to scathing reviews and judgements about its treatment of race issues and placing a white man’s redemption in the narrative. It happened last year with La La Land. Can’t we just take our time and enjoy things? Maybe give Three Billboards a critical reappraisal in a few years or so? What I saw when I watched Three Billboards was a damned fine film. A film not without its flaws, but a damned fine film nonetheless. Continue reading

Review: Darkest Hour (2017) (Churchill On The Tube?!?!?)

(SPOILERS AHEAD)

“He stands for one thing and one thing only: himself”

Do you want a film about World War II where at least three of the main characters are rich, white, old and have a speech impediment? Do you also want a film that completely shifts its tone in the third act, upending everything that’s been built up in the previous two acts? Then Darkest Hour may be the film for you! Can Churchill’s manner of speaking be classed as a speech impediment? Well, it impeded my hearing of the dialogue. Does that count? Darkest Hour is a good, even very good film the first two acts. However, a pivotal scene in the third act comes across as crass and ridiculous. For me, at least, it ruined the entire film. Continue reading

Review: Coco (2017) (Another Pixar Masterpiece?)

(SPOILER FREE)

“Sometimes, I think I’m cursed”

Well, I was not prepared for that! Pixar’s latest animated film, Coco, proved to be an emotional rollercoaster for me. I’ve not cried that much during a film for a very, very long time. And it wasn’t just a few tears…towards the end it was a full-on flood! My fiancée didn’t even shed a tear! Maybe it proves my theory of the male period…but that’s a tale for another time. It probably means that I can’t review it objectively, but I’ll try my best. For now, Coco stands out as a top-tier Pixar film. And that’s saying something, isn’t it? Continue reading

Review: The Greatest Showman (2017) (Is This The Musical You’ve Been Waiting For?)

“Ladies and gents, this is the moment you’ve waited for…”

I don’t know about you, but I hate most film musicals. Try as I might, but I can’t watch them. The mere hint of a musical sends me running away in fear. Last year, La La Land made itself the first musical I ever went to the cinema to watch. And…I enjoyed it! It shouldn’t have been anywhere near the Oscars, but it did the job. A year later, I found myself at the cinema waiting to watch The Greatest Showman. Why? The trailer suckered me in, and my fiancée wanted to see it. And…I bloody loved it! The Greatest Showman stands as the only musical I could watch over and over again…and it also gave me a duet between Hugh Jackman and Zac Efron, something I never knew I needed until I saw it (and I need more!). Continue reading

Review: Star Wars: Episode VIII: The Last Jedi (2017) (This Is Not Going To Go The Way You Think…)

“What do you know about the Force?”

It’s been five days since I watched The Last Jedi. Part of me wanted to love it. Part of me wanted to hate it. It may have received one of the most divisive reactions to a Star Wars movie ever. But my mind is still divided against itself over The Last Jedi. I’ll probably come up with a rating by the end of this review. But that could change after a second viewing. I reckon a second viewing might be necessary to absorb everything portrayed in The Last Jedi. It was bloated, poorly paced and plodding at times. Some character plot lines were questionable at best. The core story wasn’t very interesting at all. But The Last Jedi tried its best to shock us by throwing everything including the kitchen sink at us. And that’s why I still can’t make up my mind about it. Continue reading

Review: Justice League (2017) (Justice Served?)

(SPOILER FREE)

“How many people have you really saved?”

Where do I even start with Justice League? I’ve put off writing this review since Friday because I simply don’t know if I even can be bothered to write about it. It seems Warner Bros couldn’t be bothered with Justice League. The film feels rushed, unfinished, and put together by a child. Even considering the change of directors earlier on in the year cannot excuse the mess that is Justice League. I was a defender of Batman v Superman because that dared to be different. Justice League is a sub-par copy of The Avengers, lacking Snyder’s distinct vision for the DCEU. Continue reading

Review: Thor: Ragnarok (2017) (Thor-Some?)

(SPOILER-FREE)

“I know what you’re thinking: how did this happen?”

Thor: Ragnarok is the latest Marvel Cinematic Universe film to get a shedload of critical acclaim. I’ve seen it advertised on Twitter as the “best reviewed Marvel film yet.” Of course, whenever something receives high critical acclaim, my Spider-sense tingles. It’s true, Thor: Ragnarok is enjoyable. You’ll laugh yourself silly. But I felt a little nonplussed when the credits started to roll. The third Thor film has little in common with its predecessors. The tonal shift is jarring, the characters involved are used mainly for laughs, and the story seems to have been written on the fly… Continue reading

Review: Blade Runner 2049 (2017) (A Sequel Thirty-Odd Years Too Late?)

(SPOILER FREE)

“I hope you don’t mind me taking the liberty”

When we were told that we were getting a belated sequel to Blade Runner, one of the most influential sequels of all time, I reacted with apathy. Why do we need a sequel thirty years after the original was released? Blade Runner might be very well respected as a film, but I couldn’t imagine many people buying tickets to see a sequel to it. And, of course, not many people have bought tickets to see a sequel to Blade Runner. It only making $30 million in its first weekend, compared to its budget of around $150 million. But I’d advise, nay implore, people who love cinema to watch Blade Runner 2049. What could have been worthless cash-in turned out to be one of the films of the year… Continue reading

Review: Kingsman: The Golden Circle (2017) (Or: How Not To Do A Sequel)

(SPOILER FREE)

“You think that s**t’s gonna work this time?”

Kingsman: The Secret Service was a novel surprise back in 2014, an ultraviolent spy spoof that worked gloriously. In fact, it was so successful in what it did that a sequel wasn’t necessary. However, a sequel was thrust upon us. Could the sequel be a successful spy spoof that didn’t copy the outline of the first one? Could it spoof sequels? Could it give us a reason for its existence? My answer to all of the above questions is: no. It’s a mess, in basic terms. It adds nothing of substance to the Kingsman universe. A plodding pace, a silly storyline and incongruent scenes add up to an awful sequel. Continue reading