Before we begin, we must recognize the true hero of this story: Chatty-guy-behind-us. When the movie was sneakily attempting to foreshadow something or self-indulgently tried to build a moment, Chatty-guy was there for us! He heroically defused the tension from key scenes and selflessly, loudly kept us informed of events happening directly in front of us on a giant screen.
We’re wrapping up Peggapalooza with Simon Pegg’s [IMDB] latest. Of course, he reprised his role as Scotty from 2009’s Star Trek [IMDB] and 2013’s Star Trek: Into Darkness [My Review], but he also co-wrote this installment. The reboot of the first film left fans cautiously optimistic. The second left them worried. How will this fare?
It’s impossible to discuss Simon Pegg without mentioning The Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy (it’s already been mentioned several times during Peggapalooza). The films are directed by Edgar Wright [IMDB], written by Wright and Simon Pegg [IMDB] and star Pegg and Nick Frost [IMDB].
Cornetto’s, for those unaware, are a popular prepackaged ice-cream treat popular in the United Kingdom. Each of the films in the trilogy features a distinct, thematically appropriate, flavor.
The celebration of Simon Pegg [IMDB] continues with this Australian import. Pegg exercises his range here, taking on the role of Charlie Wolfe, a professional doer of dirty deeds and all-around bad guy. He’s been hired by a local club owner (Callan Mulvey [IMDB]) to eliminate his cheating wife (Alice Braga [IMDB]).
This is the third film in the contiguous DC cinematic universe. It follows Man of Steel [My Review] and Batman v. Superman [My Review]. I enjoyed the first for its careful initial character development, but recognized its many flaws. I bemoaned the fact that character development was forgotten in the vapid, overwrought follow-up. Both left fans wanting more and Suicide Squad with every chance to be the first truly great entry in the series.
Alan Moore and Brian Bolland’s 1988 graphic novel, “The Killing Joke” was considered the quintessential Joker story of the modern era. It became the definitive origin story of the character and starkly highlighted the depths of his depravity. More importantly, it delved more deeply than ever before into the dark, codependent relationship between Batman and the Joker. It remains, nearly thirty years later, one of the most influential stories in all of comics.
[This is the 600th movie review that I’ve posted. Hooray for arbitrary large, round numbers!]
This is a sequel to the 2013 blockbuster “Olympus has Fallen” [My Review]. That review summarized the movie as, “Action fans will find a lot to like but unfortunately it lacks the soul to make it truly great.” This entry in the increasingly unlikely series could be summed up in much the same way.
Films have toyed with first person perspectives for decades, usually only in small doses. Thrillers show us what the killer sees while horror and sci-fi let us stalk the heroes through heavily filtered monster-vision. Heat-vision, night-vision, x-ray-vision, robot-vision and whatever-vision have all been simulated time and again. It’s an effective gimmick, but can it carry an entire film?
Fans of Edgar Rice Burroughs Tarzan stories have a rough row to hoe with modern interpretations of the character. Johnny Weissmuller’s [IMDB] primitive portrayal in the 1930’s set specific, but utterly incorrect, expectations of a grunting man-brute. A characterization that’s since been parroted repeatedly by hollywood.
My son was four in 2002 when Insomniac released the first “Ratchet and Clank” game on the PlayStation 2. He wasn’t truly able to play, but he watched me avidly and was upset if he discovered that I’d played without him. With the release of following games, they became our favorite series. We’d play through the games together, sharing our discoveries, and comparing notes. He’s 17 now (and I’m old). Will the modern reimagining of that first game and the companion feature film hold up to our idealized memories?