The Way Back (Movie Review)

Title: The Way Back (2020)

Director: Gavin O’Connor

Screenplay Writer: Brad Ingelsby

Stars: Ben Affleck, Al Madrigal, Janina Gavankar, Michaela Watkins, and Brandon Wilson

Genre(s): Drama | Sport

Runtime: 1 hour 48 minutes | Rating: R

IMDB STORY LINE:

Back in high school, Jack Cunningham had everything going for him. A basketball phenom, he could have punched his ticket to college or even the pros, but, instead, he chose to walk away from the game, forfeiting his future. Jack’s glory days are long gone…but, as it turns out, not forgotten. Years later, he gets the chance to take back his life when he is asked to coach the struggling basketball team at his alma mater. Jack reluctantly accepts, surprising no one more than himself, and as the boys start to come together as a team and win, he may get his last shot at redemption. Written by Warner Bros

Now let’s talk about the movie… That’s why we are here, right?

SHOW RATING OVERVIEW ★★★★★ (5 Stars)
Writing/Story: ★★★★★  |  Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★★  Cinematography:  ★★★★★ 

Writing/Story: ★★★★★

This was such a powerful script. If you are looking at this film as a sports film, it holds up. The story surrounding the basketball scenes are really good. It’s an underdog story where the worst team in the league ends up winning it all. I loved that.

If you are looking at this film for the human, emotional aspect… WOW! The dramatic aspects of this script along with the truly heartfelt acting take the movie beyond just good and make it a great film.

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★★

The Way Back stars Ben Affleck and if I’m being 100% honest, I’ve never been a huge fan of his. I liked him in Good Will Hunting and he was ok in Gone Girl and a few other movies. Although, for the most part, he is just ok. He tends to play the same character in everything he is in. I guess that is why I was so surprised when I watched this movie. Ben Affleck gives us an AMAZING performance. It is the best acting I’ve ever seen him do. The emotion he puts into the role is so beautifully devastating and real. Knowing that he has suffered from addiction in his real life, I can only imagine that some of these scenes had to be extremely hard for him to do.

Cinematography ★★★★★

I have nothing bad or good to say about the cinematography. I think that because the script was so good and the acting was even better, I didn’t notice the cinematography, but that means it was also good enough not to be noticed in any negative ways. So, it gets five stars too.

FUN FACTS:

* The movie's original title was 'The Has-Been'.
* Like Jack, Ben Affleck has also struggled with alcoholism.

MY FAVORITE QUOTE:

“You want to know why they’re leaving you open? It’s because they don’t think you can hit the ocean from the beach.” ~ Jack Cunningham

TO SUM IT UP:

Four little words say it all, “I LOVED THIS FILM!”

Have you seen The Way Back yet? If so, let me know your thoughts in the comments below. If not, I highly recommend seeing it for yourself and forming your own opinion.


BATMAN: Metahuman or Not?

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QUESTION: Is Batman just a rich man with toys or is he a metahuman?

About a week ago, I got into a discussion about Batman with some friends. I stated that he is just a rich man with toys and they got visually offended and argued that he is in fact a metahuman. Not wanting to speak out of turn, I did a little research to figure out what the heck they were talking about.

Let me start by saying, Batman is NOT my favorite superhero. I like his origin story. As a young boy, Bruce Wayne, witnesses his parents being murdered by a mugger. That experience drives him to fight crime in Gotham City, he does so by taking on the identity of Batman.  Pretty cool, but just wanting to fight crime doesn’t make him a metahuman.

Batman, from what I know of him… through movies alone – I admit I have not read the comics… but what I know of him, Bruce Wayne, or rather Batman has no inherent superhuman abilities. He simply relies on his own scientific knowledge, detective skills, and athletic abilities. He is smart… very smart, but the last time I checked being intelligent doesn’t make you a metahuman. If it did, wouldn’t geniuses like Isaac Newton, Leonardo da Vinci, Galileo, and Von Goethe all be considered metahumans?

The thing is, the appeal for me, and so many others, is that Bruce Wayne is in fact NOT a metahuman. It’s a huge redeeming factor for him. Batman, like the Green Arrow are just really good at what they do, but they aren’t metahumans. They don’t have any special skills or powers.

Sure, Batman is the worlds greatest detective… So was Sherlock Holmes, but no one ever called him a metahuman! The cool thing about Batman is that he doesn’t need powers. He is the only superhero in the trinity (Superman, Wonder Woman, and Batman) who doesn’t have special powers. He is one of the only members of the current Justice League lineup who doesn’t have metahuman abilities and that is awesome! The appeal of Batman has always been that he is simply a rich man with toys who wants to make Gotham City a better place and rid it of crime. His super power is his money and he uses his money for good.

Now, with that said, with the introduction of the Dark Knights: Metal comic book in 2017… which dealt with the weird metals in the DC universe… it seems that we’re being told that Batman was actually exposed to Dionysian, one of these dark metals, which has given him metahuman like powers. Basically, metahumans are created by these dark metals and since Batman was exposed to the metals, he is now being called a metahuman. What does being a metahuman allow Batman to do that he couldn’t do before when he was merely human? Well, he now has the ability to overcoming his injuries and he is stronger and more powerful than he has ever been.

I guess, technically he is a metahuman because this dark metal now runs through his veins… but I still just see him as a rich man with toys. What do you think, is Batman a rich man with toys or a metahuman?

MY FAVORITE BATMAN:

Michael Keaton will always be my batman. However, the list of actors who’ve played batman is pretty amazing. from the very first batman; Lewis Wilson in 1943 to Ben Affleck in 2017. Not to mention Dante Pereira-Olson who will be playing Batman in the soon to be released Joker on October 4, 2019 or Robert Pattinson who will be playing Batman in The Batman which is set to be released some time in June of 2021.

COMMENT BELOW AND TELL ME WHAT ACTOR PLAYED YOUR FAVORITE BATMAN!


Batman (Throughout History):

FILM U.S. RELEASE DATE ACTOR DIRECTOR
Batman 7/16/1943 Lewis Wilson Lambert Hillyer
Batman and Robin 6/26/1949 Robert Lowery Spencer Gordon Bennet
Batman: The Movie 7/30/1966 Adam West Leslie H. Martinson
Batman 6/23/1989 Michael Keaton Tim Burton
Batman Returns 6/19/1992 Michael Keaton Tim Burton
Batman Forever 6/16/1995 Val Kilmer Joel Schumacher
Batman & Robin 6/20/1997 George Clooney Joel Schumacher
Batman Begins 6/25/2005 Christian Bale Christopher Nolan
The Dark Knight 7/18/2008 Christian Bale Christopher Nolan
The Dark Knight Rises 7/20/2012 Christian Bale Christopher Nolan
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice 3/25/2016 Ben Affleck Zack Snyder
Suicide Squad 8/5/2016 Ben Affleck David Ayer
Justice League 11/17/2017 Ben Affleck Zack Snyder
*Joker October 2, 2019 Dante Pereira-Olson Todd Phillips
*The Batman 6/25/2021 Robert Pattison Matt Reeves

MY FAVORITE BATMAN QUOTES:

“It’s not who I am underneath, but what I do that defines me.” ~ Bruce Wayne / Batman

“All men have limits. They learn what they are and learn not to exceed them. I ignore mine.” ~ Batman

“I wear a mask. And that mask, it’s not to hide who I am, but to create what I am.” ~ Batman

What do you think?

I want to know what you think… Where do you fall in the Batman: Human Vs. Metahuman debate? Comment below and let me know. I still believe he is human, but I’d love for someone to convince me otherwise!

Check out the video on my YouTube channel below… and make sure you hit subscribe so you never miss a video.

BONUS… Joker (Release Date: Oct. 2, 2019) Trailer: