The Shining (Movie Review)

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I love receiving review requests. So, when a request to review The Shining came in, I jumped on it. Did I really need a reason to re-watch The Shining? No, but I’ll take it. 🙂

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

STORY LINE:

Jack Torrance, a writer and former teacher, signs a contract to spend the winter, with his family taking care of an old hotel with a violent past. Secluded in the Colorado mountains for 5 months, Jack, who is recently sober, slowly gets more violent and angry. His son, Danny, tries to use a special talent, the “Shining”, to inform the people outside about what is going on in the hotel.

MY 2 CENTS:

The Shining has always been one of my favorite horror films. It is perfect in just about every way. When The Shinning was first released, in 1980, it received mixed reviews. People didn’t really know what to make of it.

The fact that it was nominated for a Razzie award – honoring the worst of cinematic under-achievements – just blows me away. In my opinion, it is pretty perfect! Much like Citizen Kane or Schindler’s List, I can’t think of anything wrong with this film.

Sure, it’s metaphorical and it leaves the audience wondering what they just watched. What is wrong with that?  

Writing/Story: ★★★★★

I loved the novel. It was one of the first books I ever read that truly scared me. And the film, although very different than the novel, had the same effect. I have read that Stephen King hated the movie and recently read the following quote:

“The book is hot, and the movie is cold; the book ends in fire, and the movie in ice. In the book, there’s an actual arc where you see this guy, Jack Torrance, trying to be good, and little by little he moves over to this place where he’s crazy. And as far as I was concerned, when I saw the movie, Jack was crazy from the first scene. I had to keep my mouth shut at the time. It was a screening, and Nicholson was there. But I’m thinking to myself the minute he’s on the screen, ‘Oh, I know this guy. I’ve seen him in five motorcycle movies, where Jack Nicholson played the same part.’ And it’s so misogynistic. I mean, Wendy Torrance is just presented as this sort of screaming dishrag. But that’s just me, that’s the way I am.” ~ Stephen King, on The Shining

In my opinion, yes, the book and the film are very different. However, just because I love the book doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate the movie for what it is. The Shining is a classic horror film that will, until I die, send chills up and down my spine and nightmares into my sleeping mind.

Cinematography ★★★★★

This film has some of the best cinematography I’ve ever seen and to say that about a horror film is pretty amazing. Most horror films, especially these days, are all about the jump out at you scares, the blood and gore, and less about the visual aspects of the film.

The opening scene, where he is driving up the mountain, is stunning.

Fun fact… Although the inspiration for the fictional hotel came from Colorado’s Stanley Hotel, Kubrick ended up using Oregon’s Timberline Lodge for the exterior shots of The Shining’s Overlook Hotel and all of the interior scenes were filmed in England.

The entire film, from the opening until the closing credits, visually draws you in and leaves you on the edge of your seat in anticipation and fear.

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★★

Jack Nicholson is absolutely fantastic in this film. When you first watch him, he is oddly and uncomfortably comical. His is so light hearted in some of the scenes, especially the terrifying ones. However, as you watch his insanity settle in, you realize it is a great performance. One of the scariest scenes is when Jack is stalking his wife up the stairs. He is telling her, with a crazy smile on his face, “Wendy? Darling? Light, of my life. I’m not gonna hurt ya. You didn’t let me finish my sentence. I said, I’m not gonna hurt ya. I’m just going to bash your brains in. …”

Shelley Duvall appears to be on edge and devastated throughout this entire film. I’ve heard that Stanley Kubrick treated Shelley very poorly throughout filming. Some people say he did it in order to get this devastated performance, and although I don’t agree with his methods, I have to admit it worked. Watching her, you truly do believe she is afraid… devastated… and just completely lost.

Danny Lloyd is amazing and, in my opinion, gives us one of the all-time best child actor performances. He is natural and completely believable. I find it hard to believe that his film credits pretty much start and end with this film. However, he does make an appearance in the film Doctor Sleep, the sequel to The Shining. But, I was disappointed to find out he is playing just a spectator and not reprising his role as Danny.

FUN FACT:

There is a photograph at the ends of the film, that shows Jack Torrancce, Jack Nicholson’s character, smiling at the 1921 July 4th Ball at the Overlook Hotel. It leaves the audience on edge, because it leaves you questioning reality. Has he been there the whole time? Was he there before? The worst part is that the questions are never answered.

When asked what the photograph means, Stanley Kubrick said, “The ballroom photograph at the very end suggests the reincarnation of Jack.” That would mean that Jack Torrance is the reincarnation of a guest or someone on staff at the Overlook in 1921.

MY FAVORITE QUOTES:

“Some places are like people: some shine and some don’t.”

“I like you, Lloyd. I always liked you. You were always the best of them. Best goddamned bartender from Timbuktu to Portland, Maine. Or Portland, Oregon, for that matter.”

This quote makes me wonder… ‘I always like you.’ Is he referring to the fact that he knew him before, from time spent at the hotel? Plus, the mention of Portland, Oregon… is that a nod to the fact that the exterior hotel shots were filmed in Oregon? Just food for thought.

TO SUM IT UP:

This film is a terrifying glimpse into the declining mental state of a man on the edge. It’s a horror film where the lead character – a drunk on the wagon – is an abusive husband and father. Sure, it is an extreme situation but the fact that this type of thing can, and has, happened makes it all the more disturbing.

This movie came out in 1980, so you’ve probably already seen it, but if not, I highly recommend it.  Especially if you plan to see Doctor Sleep while its still in the theatres… watch The Shining first, even if just to reacquaint yourself.

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

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


To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018) ~ Movie Review

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Watch the movie on NETFLIX! Buy the book HERE!

SHOW RATING OVERVIEW ★★★★ (3.75)
Writing/Story: ★★★★ | Cinematography:  ★★★★ | Sound: ★★ | Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★★

IMDB STORY LINE:

Lara Jean Covey writes letters to all of her past loves, the letters are meant for her eyes only. Until one day when all the love letters are sent out to her previous loves. Her life is soon thrown into chaos when her foregoing loves confront her one by one.

MY 2 CENTS:

Now, I need to read the book! I’ve read a number of online reviews that say the movie stayed true to the book and if that’s the case, then like I said… I need to read the book.

Writing/Story: ★★★★

This movie was light hearted and fun. It’s not a “think piece” by any means. It isn’t meant to strike up political debate… or any debate for that matter. It’s just a cute, high school centered, feel-good movie… Well, feel-good in the ‘I’d never want this situation to happen to me, but watching it on screen is a lot of fun’ sort of way.

Since watching the film, I’ve read a lot of reviews… some good and some not so good. Honestly, I don’t get it. This movie is meant to entertain, and it does that. It’s a cute romcom and it seems like the actors are having a great time in their roles.

Cinematography ★★★★

There really wasn’t anything spectacular about the cinematography in this film, but there wasn’t anything bad about it either… so it gets 4 stars!

Sound ★★

Ok, I don’t usually put ‘Sound’ on my list, but this one stood out and not in a good way. There were a couple of times when the sound just went a little wonky, but the one that stands out the most was when Lara Jean confronts her bully in the girl’s bathroom. It sounded like a movie video that was recorded on a very old VHS tape recorder. Not good.

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★★

I think what I liked most about this film was the characters. They felt real and they were relatable. Now, most of that has to do with the writing, I know that. The author of the novel as well as the screenwriter, who adapted the novel, did a great job with character development. By the end of the film, you feel like you know these characters and you can probably relate to at least one of them.

With that said, some of the credit also has to go to the actors. I thought this cast did a great job brining these characters to life.

Lana Condor, as Lara Jean, was cute, spunky, awkward, and the perfect girl next-door.

Noah Centineo, who I have to admit is hit or miss with his acting, did a much better job in this film than in Swiped (2018) a disaster of a film.

Janel Parrish, who played Lara Jean’s older sister Margot, commanded the screen even though her roles was rather small.

MY FAVORITE QUOTES:

“My life was a mess… but I could clean my room.”

TO SUM IT UP:

If you like relaxing with a feel-good movie, then you should watch this one. Grab your popcorn and get cozy. Its 99 minutes of pure enjoyment, where you don’t have to think about all the other pressures in life!  

Have you seen ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’? Let me know your thoughts, in the comments below. As always, I do recommend seeing this film for yourself and forming your own opinion.

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

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018) Trailer:

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (the novel)

Lara Jean’s love life gets complicated in this New York Times bestselling “lovely, lighthearted romance” (School Library Journal) from the bestselling author of The Summer I Turned Pretty series.

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them…all at once?

Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.


Isn’t It Romantic (2019) ~ Movie Review

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SHOW RATING OVERVIEW ★★★★ (4.33)

Writing/Story: ★★★★
Cinematography: ★★★★ Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★★

IMDB STORY LINE:

A young woman disenchanted with love mysteriously finds herself trapped inside a romantic comedy.

MY 2 CENTS:

I won’t lie, I love romantic comedies… they are my guilty pleasure! Plus, I am a huge fan of Rebel Wilson, her comedic timing is amazing. So, after watching the preview, I was all in!

Writing/Story: ★★★★

This movie was clever! Think of every romcom cliché you can… now, imagine them all in one movie… what you get is ‘Isn’t It Romantic’. The thing is, in this film, it works. It’s a parody on romantic comedies… The movie is making fun of all romantic comedies well being one of the funniest, wittiest, and most beguiling romantic comedies I’ve seen in a while.

This story could have gone south… and tanked, but writers Erin Cardillo, Dana Fox, and Katie Silberman obviously have a clear understanding of what works in a romantic comedy and what we all make fun of. They gave us a perfect balance of comedy and emotion.

Cinematography ★★★★

I have nothing bad to say about the cinematography in this film… nothing amazing either.

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★★

Rebel Wilson was amazing, as she always is. Her comedic timing alone could have carried the film, if that had been necessary. However, with the cast line up this movie had, there was no question it would be fun to watch.

Having Adam Devine and Rebel Wilson playing off each other, yet again, seemed like one of the most natural things in the world. Their chemistry on film may have started in Pitch Perfect, but I have a feeling it will continue for years to come.

Liam Hemsworth, as Blake, did a great job playing the arrogant, good looking, rich guy… and a bit clueless too.

Betty Gilpin, as Whitney, was fantastic. The part is a bit underrated but Gilpin made the role something to remember. If you don’t know Gilpen, then you need to watch GLOW… she is brilliant!

MY FAVORITE QUOTES:

“My life’s become a mother-BEEPing romantic comedy and it’s PG-13.”

TO SUM IT UP:

If you like Romcoms… laughing… and just an all around feel good movie, then you should watch this one. Grab a cozy blanket, a bucket of popcorn, a couple glasses of wine (or your favorite beverage), your significant other, and settle in for a great date night in!

Have you seen ‘Isn’t It Romantic’ yet? Let me know your thoughts, in the comments below. Tell me what you thought of the movie. As always, I do recommend seeing this film for yourself and forming your own opinion.

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

Isn’t It Romantic (2019) Trailer:

IT Chapter Two (2019) ~ Movie Review

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SHOW RATING OVERVIEW ★★★.★★★ (3.75)
Writing/Story: ★★★★★ | Cinematography:  ★★★ | CGI: ★★ Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★★

IMDB STORY LINE:

Twenty-seven years after their first encounter with the terrifying Pennywise, the Losers Club have grown up and moved away, until a devastating phone call brings them back.

MY 2 CENTS:

I have to say, seeing as Stephen King is my favorite author, this film is probably my most anticipated films of the year. I loved the book, thought the mini-series back in 1990 did an amazing job bringing the book to life, and really enjoyed the 2017 version of IT Chapter One. With the whole cast from the 2017 version coming back for Chapter Two plus the addition of Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, Bill Hader, and so many other awesome actors I can’t deny I was very excited going into the theatre.

There is a lot to love about this film… there are also a few things I didn’t really care for. Now, I’ve heard complaints about the movie’s length, at 2 hours and 49 minutes it is a very long movie, but you have to consider the length of the book… Like most Stephen King novels, it’s not short!

Writing/Story: ★★★★★

As I said before, this movie is based on the novel IT by Stephen King. When IT was originally adapted to live action, it was a mini-series on television. I remember eating it up. I had just finished reading the book and couldn’t wait to see it. With it being a mini-series, they were able to really get a lot of the details from the book into the show… something you can’t really do when it’s a movie on the big screen, you just don’t have the time to fit it all in.

Splitting the movie into two parts, Chapter One and Chapter Two, did allow for more detail, but I felt as an audience member that chopping it up so much really made certain aspects of the films uneven. Plus, when you really look at what the movie is about, an evil clown comes to town every 27 years and kills kids… it’s a little surprising how long the movie is. Both movies pretty much have the same plot – Pennywise is back, killing kids, and the members of the Loser Club have to fight and kill him.

I think one of the reasons I really liked the original mini-series and even why I liked the 2017 movie a little more than this one is because you really get to feel what they are going through from a kids perspective. Think about it, evil creepy clown running around town in the sews killing kids… as a kid, that is some seriously scary stuff. However, with these characters, they approach Pennywise in much the same way they did as children, they have all the same fears they did 27 years before. However, that isn’t really realistic, as we get older, we change, people evolve, what we are afraid of changes and we approach our fears in a different way.

Cinematography ★★★

I think there are some really great shots in in this movie. However, I also think that the way it was filmed gave away a little too much too quickly. Sure, as the audience, we already know who Pennywise is and what he looks like, but I just think with a scary movie there is something to say for keeping the monster hidden that amps up the suspense. It seemed that Pennywise got a lot of screen time in this film, which took the scare level down significantly for me.

Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI):  ★★

Fun fact about the young actors who played the Losers Club members in IT Chapter One: They grew tremendously in the 2 years following filming that they actually had to be digitally ‘de-aged’ in some scenes because they looked significantly older than before. For me, every time I noticed it – which was often throughout the film – it pulled me out of the moment. I get that there really wasn’t another way to do it, since the flashback scenes with the kids had to look like they were from the same time period as the 2017 film, but for me the technique just wasn’t executed that well.

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★★

Let’s talk about Character(s) and acting… First off, there isn’t a whole lot of character building in this movie. I understand that we, as the audience, already know the characters from when they were children in the first movie, however this is 27 years later… people tend to change, a lot, in 27 years. The movie gives us only one scene for each of the main characters to show us what they are like now. It just feels really rushed as the movie pushes the characters together, trying to get them back to Derry. Then, once they are there the pace slows down considerably and it almost feels to slow with not enough action.

In terms of acting… WOW! Everyone is really strong. Both the adults playing the Loser Club as well as their child actor counterparts.

I think one of my favorite scenes is when they all first come together, at the restaurant. They haven’t seen each other is 27 years and yet there is an instant connection. You can see and feel the comradery as if they have remained close friends all their lives. They do a really good job of making it seem like these adults are the grown versions of the kids we saw jut two years ago in the 2017 movie. Mannerisms and speech patterns are all very similar and it helps to be able to connect each of the children actors to their adult counterparts.

Best actor award has to go to Bill Skarsgard who plays Pennywise. Pennywise is just a wonderful role for an actor. Tim Curry was amazing as Pennywise in the 1990 mini-series and Bill Skarsgard has done a wonderful job in both the 2017 and 2019 files. He is creepy – Defiantly the thing that nightmares are made of.  

MY FAVORITE QUOTES:

“See, the thing about being a loser, you don’t have anything to lose. So, be true. Be brave. Stand. Believe. And don’t ever forget, we’re losers, and we always will be.” ~ Losers Club (IT Chapter Two)

“Here’s Johnny” ~ Henry Bowers

  • The reason I like this one so much is because it’s a throwback to another Stephen King book, The Shining when Jack Torrance has gone crazy and is chopping down the bathroom door with an axe to kill his wife.

TO SUM IT UP:

Although I enjoyed this film, maybe not as much as the 2017 movie, I have to say it just doesn’t fully live up to the 1990’s mini-series. However, I do tend to lean toward originals more so then remakes and books rather than movies.

Have you seen IT Chapter Two yet? Did you see IT Chapter One, or better yet did you see the Original IT Mini Series? And, even more importantly, have you read the book? Let me know your answers, in the comments below. Tell me what you thought of the book, the mini-series, or the movies! I’d love to know. As always, I do recommend seeing this film for yourself and forming your own opinion.

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

Open the video and watch it on YouTube so you can subscribe to my channel and never miss a video!

IT Chapter Two (2019) Trailer:

IT Chapter One (2017) Trailer:

IT mini-series (1990) Trailer:


The Art of Racing in the Rain (Movie Review)

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SHOW RATING OVERVIEW: ★★★.★ (3.33)
Writing/Story: ★★★ | Cinematography:  ★★★ | Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★

IMDB BLURB:

Through his bond with his owner, aspiring Formula One race car driver Denny, golden retriever Enzo learns that the techniques needed on the racetrack can also be used to successfully navigate the journey of life.

IMDB STORY LINE:

Dog lovers often believe their canine family members understand language, comprehend events, have opinions, and exude loyalty. In “The Art of Racing in The Rain”, wise old dog Enzo Swift shares thoughts about the life experiences which prepared him to protect his family in times of greatest need.

MY 2 CENTS:

So, 2019 seems to be the year of dog movies. Earlier this year we had A Dog’s Way Home and A Dog’s Journey. Now, The Art of Racing in the Rain. So, have you seen this movie? If so, what did you think of it? I need your comments down below.

Let’s jump right in and talk about the critical points…

Writing/Story: ★★★

The writing is good… average. I wish I had read the book, so I’d be able to compare it, but I didn’t. So, I will say this, there isn’t a whole lot of meaningful dialogue in this one. There are a lot of cute little one liners but not a lot of substantial dialogue where the characters are getting to know each other or connecting on a meaningful level. It has a strong made for TV feel about it.

The story is cute… who doesn’t like a movie centered around a cute dog. However, when this one takes a turn… leaving the dog story for a bit and focuses more on the human aspect of the film, that’s when we really get to see it for what it is… a Lifetime movie with a pretty common plot.

Sure, there are some emotional moments and some tragic things happen. Things that could happen to anyone… things that will break your heart if they happen in real life. However, it’s the way they go about it in this film that just didn’t hit the right emotional buttons with me.   

With that said, most dog movies are seen as family films, but this one does hit on topics that are a bit too depressing for kids to be entertained by.

Cinematography ★★★

Honestly, there just wasn’t anything sensationally about the cinematography in this film. Nothing to wright home about. There was one scene, when Denny is racing in the rain and

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★

I have to say the Best Actor award in this one has to go to the dog. Or rather, dogs, plural. There were multiple dogs that played Enzo, but seriously these dogs did an amazing job. Kudos to the trainers on set, they did a fantastic job getting the dogs to do exactly what was needed for this film. Plus, with Kevin Costner’s voice giving life to the dog how could the film really go wrong, right? His timing and delivery of Enzo’s lines was perfect.

Our other two main characters were Amanda Seyfried, who played Eve, and Milo Ventimiglia who played Denny Swift.

Amanda was great, she always is. She is a natural on screen and wow… I didn’t see that coming. This movie, as I’m sure the book did, took a major turn with her character. I won’t give it away, but I wasn’t expecting it. She did a beautiful job showing true emotion throughout her performance, I just wish we could have seen a bit more of it from the dog’s perspective.

Milo did a good job too; I’ve enjoyed his acting since his days on The Gilmore Girls. I think he felt a little stiff in this one, but over all not bad. He had some good emotion driven moments, but all in all his character was more one liners than deep, true, conversation. The movie is called The Art of Racing in the Rain, I really wish we could have seen him race a bit more. We saw him drive around the race track… mostly when there weren’t other drivers on the track with him. I felt a little gipped that we didn’t get to see a few good races.

MY FAVORITE QUOTES:

“There is no dishonor in losing the race. There is only dishonor in not racing because you are afraid to lose.”

TO SUM IT UP:

The story as a whole, wasn’t bad. When the focus was on the dog… telling the story from the dog’s perspective, I was really into it. It was when it took a turn and focused more on the human aspects of the story instead of what it was… a story about a dog… that’s when it lost my focus a bit.

Listen, with that said, this movie is still really good. If you loved it, I’m glad. I enjoyed it too. I know I might not have the most popular opinion about this film, but my job here is as a critic… I look at all aspects of the film and tell you what I think. This one just didn’t move me in ways other dog movies have moved me other the years. Sure, I got teary eyed once… I didn’t cry, but I got a bit of blurry vision when the Enzo road in the race car, and sure there are some serious – SERIOUS – topics discussed and things happen… terrible – sad things that I did get emotional about. I knew nothing about the movie before seeing it, other than it was narrated by a dog… I don’t want to give away to much since I’m sure not everyone watching this video has seen the film.

Have you seen The Art of Racing in the Rain yet? Have you read the book? If you have let me know, in the comments below, what you thought of either the book or the movie! I’d love to know. I haven’t read the book, but I plan to and I do recommend seeing this film. Watch it yourself and see what you think.

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

View the Official Trailer Below!


Captain Marvel (2019) Movie Review

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  • TITLE: Captain Marvel (2019)
  • DIRECTORS: Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck
  • SCREENPLAY WRITERS: Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck, and Geneva Robertson-Dworet
  • STARS: Brie Larson (Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel), Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury), and Ben Mendelsohn (Talos/Keller)
  • GENRE(S): Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
  • RUNTIME: 123 minutes

SHOW RATING OVERVIEW ★★★ (3.5)
Writing/Story: ★★★ | Cinematography:  ★★★ Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI): ★★★★★ Character(s)/Acting: ★★★

IMDB BLURB:

Carol Danvers becomes one of the universe’s most powerful heroes when Earth is caught in the middle of a galactic war between two alien races.

IMDB STORY LINE:

After crashing an experimental aircraft, Air Force pilot Carol Danvers is discovered by the Kree and trained as a member of the elite Starforce Military under the command of her mentor Yon-Rogg. Six years later, after escaping to Earth while under attack by the Skrulls, Danvers begins to discover there’s more to her past. With help from S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Nick Fury, they set out to unravel the truth.

MY 2 CENTS:

Writing/Story: ★★★ The Marvel Cinematic Universe is finally introduced to Carol Danvers, played by Brie Larson. She learns about her past, she discovers who she is, and she finds herself caught in the middle of a war between two alien races and realizes she is more powerful than she ever knew or thought possible.

Carol Danvers is the everyday woman turned female hero. In my opinion, we don’t have enough female heroes on screen so I was really looking forward to this one. Unfortunately, I was disappointed. I understand that when the lead character doesn’t know anything about their past, it can be difficult to tell the story and portray that disassociation to the audience. With Carol Danvers, we learn about her past at the same time she does, through audio recordings and short flashes of things that happened in her past. It’s similar to when you’re reading a book and the author just word vomits all over you, telling you what happened instead of showing you. I wanted to see Carol physically discovering her powers, reacting to things instinctively, which would then lead to sparks of memories. Instead, more often than not these memories were brought on by the audio recordings, the short flashes of memory, and her visits with the Supreme Intelligence (played by Annette Bening) which is somehow supposed to tell her or show her what she most desires… I won’t even get into that because it was just a really strange plot line to me.  

Honestly, for me, this was more of a Nick Fury movie… It was my first experience really getting to know the Character of Nick Fury and I thought Samuel L. Jackson did a great job with the role. I loved seeing the younger version of Nick Fury since my only other experience with him was in Spiderman: Far from Home earlier this year. Captain Marvel was more of a buddy cop movie staring Brie Larson and Samuel L. Jackson. Or an amnesia self-discover movie… or maybe it’s a fish out of water movie since she comes to earth and has no idea how earth operates.

Cinematography ★★★ Visually, there just wasn’t much to talk about with this film. There isn’t a whole lot of style with this one. This film felt like a series of storyboard moments. The actors are intentionally framed, and their performing but there is no really remarkable style to speak of. That isn’t to say there aren’t good moments. There are. There are a couple really fun fight sequences and a cool slow-motion walk to the space craft, but other than that there just isn’t a lot of visual style to it.

Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI):  ★★★★★ I have to say one of the most noteworthy aspects of this film was the CGI done to de-age Samuel L. Jackson and Clark Gregg (Agent Coulson). Truly amazing CGI. If for no other reason than to see the stunning CGI work, this one is worth the TV rental fee. After the first scene or two, I stopped noticing and they seemed completely natural, which to me is the sign of a truly gifted CGI team. If you stop noticing the CGI and it starts blending into the rest of the film then you know they’ve done a great job.

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★ I felt like Brie Larson, although maybe not my choice for Carol Danvers, she did have some good moments. The chemistry between her and Samuel L. Jackson was fun to watch. They played nicely off of each other and the banter back and forth was very clever and entertaining.

Like I said, Brie Larson wouldn’t really be my choice for Carol Danvers. It isn’t because I don’t think she is a good actress, I do. I loved her in Room, and honestly think she is fantastic in the right role. However, in this film she just wasn’t the right choice. She doesn’t seem to fit the strong superhero persona. Her acting style felt forced and she seemed stiff and uncomfortable in the costume, and her movements were choppy, rather than fluid, during the fight sequences.

Although I felt like Lashana Lynch did a decent job at Maria, Carol’s best friend, there just didn’t seem to be much chemistry between the two actresses. Sure, Carol doesn’t have any memory of their friendship, but Maria does… There should have been some sign of that internal struggle she would have been feeling having lost her best friend, thinking she was dead for years, and then having her show up on her doorstep. I just wish there had been more of an emotional connection between the two of them. Without that, I just didn’t really care for the characters.

MY FAVORITE QUOTE:

“I’m not gonna fight your war. I’m gonna end it.” ~ Carol Danvers

 Honestly, this is a pretty good superhero quote and to me, probably the most superhero thing Carol Danvers says in this film.

TO SUM IT UP:

I was more disappointed than I was entertained. The movie isn’t terrible… but it’s not great… it just seemed to fall flat.


Have you seen Captain Marvel yet? If you have let me know, in the comments below, what you thought of it! As always, I do recommend seeing this film and finding out for yourself what you think of it. My opinions might not line up with yours and you might just love the film.


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

View the Official Trailers Below!

Alita: Battle Angel (2019) – Movie Review

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  • Title: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
  • Director: Robert Rodriguez
  • Writers: James Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis
  • Stars: Rosa Salazar (Alita), Christoph Waltz (Dr. Dyson Ido), Jennifer Connelly (Chiren), Mahershala Ali (Vector), and Keean Johnson (Hugo)
  • Genre(s): Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi | Thriller
  • Runtime: 122 minutes

SHOW RATING OVERVIEW ★★★★ (4.333)
Writing/Story: ★★★★ | Cinematography:  ★★★★★ | Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★


IMDB STORYLINE:

Alita is a creation from an age of despair. Found by the mysterious Dr. Ido while trolling for cyborg parts, Alita becomes a lethal, dangerous being. She cannot remember who she is, or where she came from. But to Dr. Ido, the truth is all too clear. She is the one being who can break the cycle of death and destruction left behind from Tiphares. But to accomplish her true purpose, she must fight and kill. And that is where Alita’s true significance comes to bear. She is an angel from heaven. She is an angel of death. Written by Anthony Harmon


MY 2 CENTS:

Writing/Story: ★★★★

This movie was Based on a graphic novel series by Yukito Kishiro. I haven’t read the graphic novel series so I can’t compare them to the movie. I’m just reviewing what I saw on screen and I personally think that James Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis did an awesome job with the adaption and that Robert Rodriquez was exactly the right director to bring it to life.  

Battle Angel Alita Deluxe Complete Series Box Set

Right from the start of the film, you are swept away in this mysterious, dangerous new world where nothing is as we know it today yet the societal struggles of class are all too familiar.  

The only think I really had a problem with was the unnecessary romantic storyline. I didn’t really believe the relationship between Alita and the local boy who falls in love with her.

Cinematography:  ★★★★★

I don’t usually call out the cinematographer by name, but this film was so much fun to watch and the imagery that Bill Pope gave us on screen was truly beautiful. The world created in this film is stunning and the effects are amazing!

The motor ball scenes which depict this world’s sporting event are insane. Basically, the players go around a race-track with a metal ball that they have to capture. Its violent and fast-paced, and so exciting. As a movie goer, I was drawn right in.  

The visuals in this world are insane!!! The fight sequences are so exciting. I love a strong female character, but I do think that Alita is a character than all movie goers can enjoy.

Character(s)/Acting: ★★★★

Rosa Salazar was fantastic as Alita and the special effects associated with her character were astounding. I will definitely be checkout out more of her work.

Christoph Waltz was good as Dr. Dyson Ido. You could really feel his fatherly love for Alita as well as his internal struggle with what he was doing just to survive.

I’m a Jennifer Connelly fan but with this film, I felt that her character was really under-utilized. There just wasn’t much character development with her character. I felt like they could have done so much more with her.    

Mahershala Ali was another actor that just felt stagnant in this film. There wasn’t much to his character. He was a puppet and I felt like just about anyone could have played his role.

Keean Johnson who plays Hugo, Alita’s love interest, actually surprised me. No, I didn’t believe the romance between them, but he did a great job with his internal struggle. He so desperately wanted to get up to the upper world and will do, and has done, literally anything he has to do to get there. Then, when he meets Alita his starts to struggle with some of his decisions.

MY FAVORITE QUOTES:

“This is just a body. It’s not bad or good. That part’s up to you.” ~ Dr. Dyson Ido

“You’ve been given a chance to start over with a clean slate. How many of us get that?” ~ Dr. Dyson Ido


TO SUM IT UP:

Overall, I loved this film. I’ve seen some less than flattering reviews on it, but I really enjoyed it and think it was a lot of fun. Sometimes you really just want a fun, strong, unstoppable character and that’s what you get with Alita.

Have you seen Alita: Battle Angel yet? If you have let me know, in the comments below, what you thought of it!

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

View the Official Trailer Below: