Archives for category: Sci-Fi

Let there be no doubt. I love the Hunger Games series and thus I always get scared before going to watch a new one. With all the other movies of the same genre, The Maze Runner and Divergent, coming out and falling far outside the Wow-zone, why shouldn’t The Hunger Games stumble and fall?

It just never does.

The Hunger Games: Mocking Jay Part 1 Poster with Katniss Jennifer Lawrence

Hell yes, I would be a warrior if I could look this fierce!

What is this film?

“The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1” is the third installment, in other words the third book that now gets the compulsory treatment of being dragged out into two movies. And somehow this doesn’t make me so sad as overcome with joy. Because I don’t want it to be over.

If you haven’t watched “The Hunger Games” yet then just do me a favour and start, even if you are outside the young adult demografic. It is so much better than its demographic..

We start where the last movie abruptly ended. Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence, the one who tripped at the Oscars) has just been rescued from the Games and is now stuck between a rock and a hard place. All she wants is to save Peeta, who didn’t get saved from the Games, although that was the original deal she had made. She doesn’t want to be a symbol of the republic.

But everyone else wants her to be the Mockingjay they all need.

 

Is it any good?

“The Hunger Games” can do no wrong, at least not when it comes to me.

Where other movies are predicable, Hunger Games movies always manage to surprise me, even though the choice in storyline isn’t necessarily groundbreaking. Where other movies have nagging and whining heroines, Katniss manages to cry and whine a bunch with me only thinking that she damn well has good reason to cry and whine. I mean, her whole world has turned to shit and it’s out of her control.

Although she tries her best to control as much as she can.

And where other movies just creates a world, the world of Hunger Games has a lot of interesting political, cultural and social commentary and satire that makes it that much more interesting to delve deep and start thinking about our own world. I mean, would you watch Hunger Games if they started to show it on TV?

And best of all, it always manages at some point to suspense me to the edge of my toes.

There aren’t a lot of movies who can do that these days.

 

The harsh reality of being an icon

An interesting aspect of the Hunger Game movies are how they go under the skin of the “celebrity”-world. How are celebrities created and maintained? How much fun is it really to be one? How much of what we see in the media is true? How much of it is staged? These elements are crucial to be aware of, especially for young adults whose only ambition in life is “to be famous”.

What makes Katniss the ultimate heroine of course is that she can’t act. The media stategist actually have to put her in the middle of all the hardship and war for her to speak as Mockingjay, the revolutionary character that she has to become to inspire a whole world to rise up and take a stand against District One.

This fact is an excellent juxtaposition to her otherwise very selfish thoughts. Because don’t think that Katniss really wants to be a hero for the better of all mankind. She knows being a hero is a shit job. She just wants to save the ones she loves. And they just want to save the cat 😉

 

Is it worth a cinema ticket?

If you haven’t watched any of the other Hunger Games movies, I would watch those first. I think you probably will understand what is going on just from watching this film on its own, but the truth is that you will ruin the effect of the previous two movies and you really shouldn’t go your life without this experience. Even if it is on your cheap ass 55″, flat screen LED-TV 😉

If you have already watched Hunger Games, you know that these are movies that deserve a great, big-ass screen and Dolby Atmos to proper drag you into this world of districts, vast social differences and advanced technology. It is made for the cinema experience. So get going!

 

What mood should you be in?

You don’t need to be in a specific mood to enjoy Hunger Games. There is action, there is romance, there are jokes both light-hearted and sarcastic and there is the escape into a world so different from our own yet still so similar which in and of itself helps us understand and criticise how we go about our own business.

You just need to be in the mood to watch a movie, really.

 

Further Watching

If you’re not in love with Jennifer Lawrence after watching all the Hunger Games movies, then I declare something is wrong with you. And most likely you don’t like the movies either.

If, like anyone normal, you love Miss Lawrence, you should check out some of her other movies. I would recommend to start with her Oscar-award-winning performance in “Silver Linings Playblook” (2012) where she stretches her acting muscles against Bradley Cooper (the cute guy in the Hangover movies) with some psychological issues and such.

Or, you could start with one of the early movies that put her on the map as an actress to watch, the chilling, and unnerving “Winter’s Bone“.

For another movie on creating a war through media manipulation, check out “Wag the Dog” (1997) where americans create a fictional war in the media to cover up a sex scandal involving the president in the time before reelection. Hilarious!

 

If you like my opinions on movies, then please follow my blog and I will give you a new recommendation on a movie in the cinema each week, from the ImDb top 250, Netflix or just Kult movies or Guilty Pleasures that I think are worth watching.

 

Jennifer Lawrence even has her own TV-Crew with her in her films :D

Jennifer Lawrence even has her own TV-Crew with her in her films 😀

Who am I?

I’m a freelance writer who likes to go to the movies. But I don’t like it when I waste my money on a bad film. I need to bitch about those movies.

If I see a movie that is absolutely worth the trip to town, 130 NOK ticket (£13/$20), popcorn and drink expenditure, then I need to rave about it!

And since I want to watch all the movies in the world, you can waste less of your time, check in with me and only watch the good ones.

In these New Release blog posts, I will pick a movie currently in the cinema in Norway at random, and tell you if it was worth a cinema ticket. It might be good, but does it deserve so much of your time and money, and does it benefit from a big screen and a huge crowd?

I actually buy tickets myself (unless I can get my boyfriend to be generous) and don’t have the luxury of being invited to pre-screenings, so my New Releases will be a bit late. Hopefully they will still be in a cinema near you 😉

 

Why do I think I can talk about movies?

With an over average interest in movies since watching Star Wars as an 8 year-old, and with some background in the industry, I know at least a little bit about what it takes to get a movie made, and have loads of opinions about what makes them great.

But no matter my merits, it is whether or not you agree with my taste in movies (or my boyfriend’s, whose opinion will be noted if opposing my own) that will make these reviews beneficial to you.

 

Where can you find the film?

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1” was released on 21st of November and is still on as of today. It even has a black page on Imdb, whatever that means.

Want to get my next blog post? Follow my blog and get an email next week when I will hopefully get around to watch number 6 on the Imdb top 250 list, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. I watched half of it and couldn’t take the slow pace so now have to force myself to watch the rest at some point. In the mean time, check out number 5, “Pulp Fiction”. Does it stil deserve to be on the top 250 list?

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Why the hell are they in this maze? That is pretty much  the only reason why I wanted to watch this movie. I wanted the answer to that question.

And just so you don’t get disappointed, like some teenage girls in the cinema I was in. This IS based on a book series so there WILL be sequels and the question may or may not be answered.

At least I don’t trust the answer I got!

The Maze Runner Poster of the entrance to a big labyrinth

A giant, ever-moving maze is actually quite cool (or scary)

***no non-obvious spoilers***

What is this film?

“The Mazerunner” (2014) is (another) dystopian, kinda-sci-fi movie based on a popular young adult book series where young adults fight for their lives in weird, dystopian set-ups. Oh, and there is usually some love, a neglected theme in this movie, but I’m sure we will get to that in Phase 2.

The movie starts off with our hero Thomas waking up as he is pulled by a cart to the surface of a glade surrounded by huge walls and a group of ragged-looking Neverland boys staring at him. He doesn’t remember anything before this moment.

This is quite the intriguing set-up, and if you want to watch the film you really shouldn’t know any more beyond this point. I won’t give away any big plot points in the review, but the less information you have, the more intriguing the storyline of the movie will be.

The question is, do you really want to watch another movie that stands in the grand shadow of “The Hunger Games“? Right after the failure of “Divergent”? (what movie? check out this honest trailer to remember!)

 

Is it any good?

Meh.

The twists and turns of the plot are quite intricate and sophisticated, and sometimes, there are no way to predict where it’s actually going to go, which is a good thing. You think you know the status quo on things in this world, but you never really do.

Except that the grand solution to why they are stuck in the maze in the first place is a bit common or unsurprising. If it is actually the solution though. It could be a mind fuck.

It is a shame, however, that the same complexity and care hasn’t been thought out when it comes to the characters. On this note, the film suffers from being an adaptation of a young adults novel where apparently characters don’t change or are simply good or evil.

How boring…

 

The ending that ruined it for me

I’ll have to admit, I was kind of into this movie, bad characters and all. It is fast paced, intriguing and unexplainable things happen and you really want to figure out what the hell is going on.

But the end just kills it.

The end is shit for a couple of reasons.

1. A character goes far out of the scope of his own characterisation.

He is built up as a person who believes in staying in the glade and live there forever. Why try to get out of the maze when they can all survive in the security of the glade? You can’t build this person up as such a stubborn believer of this view and then have him break it for absolutely no apparent reason.

Maybe the reason fell out in the editing… I don’t know.

2. I also could have been without the person who dies at the end.

I am sure Thomas and this guy has a meaningful relationship in the movies, and therefore it makes sense to kill him off to up the stakes. But really, in the movie, it just feels forced. It feels like the only reason this character existed, was so that at this moment I would cry.

I didn’t cry. They killed off the fat kid. Shocker! (whops! spoiler).

Don’t get me wrong they tried a bunch of times to create some bond between Thomas and this character, and on some of the fourteen-year-old girls in the cinema it worked.

Maybe I’m just too old for this shit.

 

The pathetic excuse of a female character

What is this? The 1950s?

Fair enough that in the glade there are only boys. That makes it more fun when suddenly a girl, Teresa, is thrown into the mix, arriving unconscious on the cart.

But did she really need to be:

1. A Kristen Stewart look-alike

2. A useless whiner

3. The one who stands around looking while the guys do all the work

I thought we were past these tropes by now. It is so boring and so passé.

 

What is wrong with being a builder?

When are teen movies going to stop evangelising stupid and rather useless traits?

In this movie, “the Runners” are the best boys. The fast ones, the strong and apparently smart ones. The builders, the guys who build the houses they all sleep in, are the dumb and lazy ones.

In what world is this actually true?

I don’t know many builders, but the ones I do know are smart and sharp. They have to know a lot about physics and engineering to do what they do. Being a builder should be way more respected than it is today. In the situation in the glade, it is way more useful to be a builder than someone who can run and map the Maze while it is open during the day.

Yes, the runner might get you out, but in the mean time, the builder will keep you dry (and don’t even get me started on the farmer who will keep you fed).

I would love to see a movie where the builder or farmer is the hero. Please.

 

Is it worth a cinema ticket?

If you’re going to watch it, it might as well be in the cinema as the Maze looks truly spectacular.

And you can have some fun listening to the where the laughs and other reactions come from the fairly young crowd.

Note that my boyfriend loved this movie as well did his brother. So generally if you are fine with interesting plot and don’t care that the characters learn something, then you will be fine.

They did however start thinking it was worse after a discussion with me 😉

 

What mood should you be in?

You should be a teenager that hasn’t already seen Hunger Games or Divergent to truly enjoy this movie.

Some of the stereotypes are really worn out and characterisations are flat, but what it lacks on that part it makes up for in plot.

The plot changes the entire world that we are in about three-four times, which makes for interesting and unpredictable watching.

 

Further Watching

Just wait for more Hunger Games movies to come out. It’s only about a month and a half. You can survive the wait!

 

The Meh Cast who look a lot like Twilight knock-offs or Hunger Games casting rejects

The Meh Cast who act a lot like Twilight knock-offs or Hunger Games casting rejects

 

Who am I?

I’m a freelance writer who likes to go to the movies. But I don’t like it when I waste my money on a bad film. I need to bitch about those movies.

If I see a movie that is absolutely worth the trip to town, 130 NOK ticket (£13/$20), popcorn and drink expenditure, then I need to rave about it!

And since I want to watch all the movies in the world, you can waste less of your time, check in with me and only watch the good ones.

In these New Release blog posts, I will pick a movie currently in the cinema in Norway at random, and tell you if it was worth a cinema ticket. It might be good, but does it deserve so much of your time and money, and does it benefit from a big screen and a huge crowd?

I actually buy tickets myself (unless I can get my boyfriend to be generous) and don’t have the luxury of being invited to pre-screenings, so my New Releases will be a bit late. Hopefully they will still be in a cinema near you 😉

 

Why do I think I can talk about movies?

With an over average interest in movies since watching Star Wars as an 8 year-old, and with some background in the industry, I know at least a little bit about what it takes to get a movie made, and have loads of opinions about what makes them great.

But no matter my merits, it is whether or not you agree with my taste in movies (or my boyfriend’s, whose opinion will be noted if opposing my own) that will make these reviews beneficial to you.

 

Where can you find the film?

The Maze Runner” was released in Norway on 19th of September and it is still on as of today.

Want to get my next blog post? Follow my blog and get an email next week when I reveal another Guilty Pleasure movie!

Call it what you want! The Avengers Revamped. The Avengers Outlaw Edition. Not Another Marvel Superhero Flick.

Regardless, you can’t go your whole life without spending 2 hours of your life flexing your laughter muscles and revisiting good old classic 70s-80s songs.

That is what Guardians of the Galaxy will give you. You won’t regret it.

GuardiansoftheGalaxy_Poster***NO SPOILERS***

What is this film?

“Guardians of the Galaxy” (2014) is the newest superhero franchise that Marvel Studios has seen fit to spew out off its every churning movie machine.

Not that I mind that they do, but at some point you’ve got to wonder how many more franchises are there in the depths of the Marvel cartoon library (I am sure someone could answer me that).

Basically a bunch of thieves and bounty hunters accidentally have to join forces as an evil man is trying to get his hands on a strange ball (I won’t say what it is).

It looks and feels a lot like “The Avengers”, albeit with antiheroes and a trailer that promises a lot more silly fun.

 

What is the buzz?

Nerds and geeks all over the world are a-buzzing. Even 9gag had a poster with a demand that you go see it pretty high on the Hot list when it came out. Now there are loads of other great Guardians of the Galaxy posts 😉

My cousin called me straight after exiting the cinema to tell me that I NEEDED to go to the big house and experience it for myself.

It is THAT funny! It is THAT great!

Naturally, my expectations started to get very high. And often that leads to a crash and fall.

 

Is it any good?

Don’t get me wrong here. I absolutely loved the movie. It’s been a long time since I had THIS much fun during a trip to the cinema. Because there is no doubt that this is a funny movie.

This movie hits the perfect balance between silly and serious. Enough silly so that it feels continuously funny, and enough serious so that it doesn’t become a parody but actually it’s own movieverse (“universe in a movie” for those who don’t read “merge”).

It’s just that I know I would be absolutely raving about this movie IF I hadn’t seen “The Avengers” first.

It has the same saucy and snappy feel to it as “The Avengers”. Good and entertaining dialogue, interesting and unusual character traits (at least unusual for the sci-fi genre) and a dysfunctional group of superheroes who, by force of circumstance, have to work together.

They are not strickly speaking superheros as they don’t have explicit superpowers. They are thieves, bounty hunters and robbers (mostly), so they come off more like antiheroes than superheroes.

But those are minor details and don’t steal from the comparison.

 

Is it better than other Marvel superhero flicks?

To me, the multiple protagonist stories of Marvel function better than the single protagonist stories. For instance, I loved Iron Man as a character in “The Avengers”, but find him annoying and too self-absorbed to be identifiable in his own series of movies.

The fact that “Guardians of the Galaxy” is another take on “The Avengers” formula, makes it instantly superior to 90% of the Marvel Studios productions.

So it has that going for it.

It also has a cast of fairly unknown (the definition is: unknown to those who don’t read cartoons) characters which are actually original and funny.

For instance, Peter Quill (also known as Starlord, at least by himself) has an obsession with a tape of 70s-80s songs left him by his mom which lends itself as soundtrack to the entire movie. A refreshing new sound for a sci-fi.

Interestingly, the soundtrack, “Awesome Mix, Vol. 1”, reached number 1 on the US Billboard, the first soundtrack to do so made up of zero original songs.

 

Which superhero did I love the most?

In these cast movies, one feels obliged to choose a favourite.

Although I have preached strong females before, and the green-skinned Gamora (Zoe Saldana, who plays blue alien in Avatar) certainly is a strong female character whom I admire despite her skanky clothes, this time it was not to be the obvious ones that became my favourite.

The other contender I had was Rocket, the Racoon. Although he is genious (both literally and as a character), he didn’t steal my heart this time around.

I would also like to give a shout-out to Drax the Destroyer (played by Dave Bautista) who plays surprisingly emotional and soft for being a big, tattooed brute.

 

Groot – my surprise favourite character

It is the big, clunky tree. The Chewbacca of Marvel. The superhero Treebeard. It is Groot that was to become my favourite.

And it is not just because the only words he can speak are “I am Groot”.

He surprised me. I mean, after seeing him fight, I kind of want to be a tree. He had so many tricks up his sleeve, I always thought that I’d seen the end of his powers, and then he whips out a new one.

All hail Groot!

 

Is it worth a cinema ticket?

You should definitely watch this in the cinema.

There is a reason why they keep producing these special effects heavy, superhero-flying, action-on-top-of-action-with-an-extra-dollop of-mayo (for good measure) blockbuster movies (and sequels and prequels). They lend themselves terribly well to the cinema.

A giant screen, superb surround sound and a bucket of popcorn is just what you need to take this movie to the maximum of what it could be.

And, as I have already mentioned it is funny, you get the added bonus of sharing many, many laughs (I had a few proper out loud ones that lasted long) with all the other geeks and freaks who managed to drag some people with them to the cinema.

Make a day out of it!

 

Should you watch it in 2D or 3D?

I watched it in 3D and there were actually a fair few moments when stuff was falling on you.

Space usually lends itself well to 3D, and in this instance I think it enhanced the experience. I say I think because I was at this point deeply drawn into the story and couldn’t care less if I was watching in 2D or 3D. And I was never distracted away from this “suspension of disbelief” (as the scholars call it).

That is ultimately the best thing!

 

What mood should you be in?

You need to be in the mood for something funny. Though be aware, I almost cried twice, so there is more to this movie than funny one-liners.

And you should be aware that after watching this, you will have to go and watch the sequel which is literally promised (in words) at the end of the movie.

 

Further watching

Watch the entire credits and get a few extra seconds. It seems fairly pointless (that is, it doesn’t immediately hint towards what a sequel would be about), but I am sure some people who know the Marvel universe better than me will be able to decipher some meaning.

I mean, who is the duck?

I on my part will watch “The Avengers” (2012) again and try to determine which one is my favourite. Currently it is Avengers, but it might be circumstantial. Time will show!

 

If you like what I write and have a need for reviews now and then, follow my blog and I will give you a new review every week.

Next week will be another Guilty Pleasure movie; “The Devil Wears Prada“.

In the mean time, you can read last months Guilty Pleasure “Mrs Doubtfire” or whether or not you should go see “How to train your Dragon 2” in the cinema!?!

Guardians-of-the-Galaxy-Groot

Who am I?

I’m a freelance writer who likes to go to the movies. But I don’t like it when I waste my money on a bad film. I need to bitch about those movies.

If I see a movie that is absolutely worth the trip to town, 130 NOK ticket (£13/$20), popcorn and drink expenditure, then I need to rave about it!

And since I want to watch all the movies in the world, you can waste less of your time, check in with me and only watch the good ones.

In these New Release blog posts, I will pick a movie currently in the cinema in Norway at random, and tell you if it was worth a cinema ticket. It might be good, but does it deserve so much of your time and money, and does it benefit from a big screen and a huge crowd?

I actually buy tickets myself (unless I can get my boyfriend to be generous) and don’t have the luxury of being invited to pre-screenings, so my New Releases will be a bit late. Hopefully they will still be in a cinema near you 😉

 

Why do I think I can talk about movies?

With an over average interest in movies since watching Star Wars as an 8 year-old, and with some background in the industry, I know at least a little bit about what it takes to get a movie made, and have loads of opinions about what makes them great. But no matter my merits, it is whether or not you agree with my taste in movies (or my boyfriend’s, whose opinion will be noted if opposing my own) that will make these reviews beneficial to you.

 

Where can you find the film?

Guardians of the Galaxy” was released in Norway on 1st of August (a bit late on the New Release this month) and it is still going strong with both 3D and 2D screenings.

Want to get my next blog post? Follow my blog and get an email next week when I reveal another Guilty Pleasure movie!

 

If you trust me, then you stop reading right now and get your cinema ticket to “Edge of Tomorrow”. No questions asked. Then come back later and see if you agree with me.

Need more convincing? Ok, keep reading! Just promise me that the second you know I have won you over, stop reading. If you know as little as possible about the movie up front, the better the experience will be for you!

One wonders if Live.Die.Repeat. is a more appropriate and memorable title than Edge of Tomorrow...

One wonders if Live.Die.Repeat. is a more appropriate and memorable title than Edge of Tomorrow…

 

What is this film?

This is a science fiction/war movie based on the manga and novel “All you need is Kill” by Hiroshi Sakurazaka. Originally set in Japanese surroundings, it has been adapted to encapsulate Europe, mostly London and France.

Doug Liman, the director, is famous for the Bourne trilogy, the action series with Matt Damon. This in itself should be a testament to the quality of the action portrayed in “Edge of Tomorrow”.

The film stars Tom Cruise (the guy who jumped on a sofa), an old timer at sci-fi flicks and Emily Blunt (the bitchy receptionist from “The Devil Wears Prada“), a refreshing new face in the world of robots and aliens. A look she wears well, I might add.

 

Why is it good?

The story is what makes it good. Hands down. Thank you Hiroshi Sakurazaka.

The story unravels like the iconic comedy “Groundhog Day” with Bill Murray. Tom Cruise gets caught in a time-loop. Every time he dies he jumps back to the same point in time and has to relive the day before the massive, D-day battle (where he usually dies). You might think that sounds boring, the same thing over and over again, and it so easily could have been.

It is neither repetitive or boring. Therein lies the genius.

The reasons for why and how the time anomaly is achieved is also believably explained, unlike “Groundhog Day” where it is more an assumed act of karma. I will however leave it to the movie to explain.

The gritty war-realism paired with the complex technology is what sells it. There are visual elements in abundance to make you think of D-day and WW2 movies, a brilliant choice that is expertly adapted from Tokyo, which is the city under attack in the book. The movie echoes the realism given by celebrated war movies such as “Band of Brothers” and “Saving Private Ryan”, and it is probably this fact that knocks this movie into believable rather than absurd.

 

Can Tom Cruise still carry a movie?

In his last movie “Oblivion” (2013), Tom Cruise looked a little dragged an tired, old and uncomfortable. In “Edge of Tomorrow” he holds his own much better.

He plays the charming public relations major, Cage, who knows how to talk and convince people to believe what he says. He is however a coward who doesn’t want to go to actually fight the war. This point of view is refreshing and nice as war movies go, because I am wildly guessing that a lot of people would feel the same as Cage faced with the prospect of actual combat. Watching him desperately try to explain his time-loop predicament, basically failing at what he is good at, is hilarious.

For every action-loving female out there, Emily Blunt is the new hard-core woman to adore. She is the elite-soldier of the revolution against the enemy. She is the hero. And she remains the ever professional soldier with one goal and one goal only. To defeat the enemy. Again refreshing.

Don’t think this movie will give you what you presume. It will give you way more than that.

 

Why is this movie worth your cinema ticket?

We were a double couple who went to watch “Edge of Tomorrow” at the Imperial Cinema in Copenhagen, a rather amazing cinema with great sound and screen. All of us loved it. Both boys and girls. Perfect flick for couples.

I normally would say that war movies have too much random/meaningless/storyless violence in them which renders it boring. This movie contains ALOT of war and violence, but given its untraditional story structure, there is always a purpose to the fighting. They are at least always trying to remember to shoot that enemy or to duck next time.

Out of all the movies I have watched so far this year, this is the movie I would go watch again and again in the cinema. It is perfect for the grandness and spectacle.

If you value the original stand-alone movies, the movies that are not part of a franchise or number seven in the line of remakes. If you want Hollywood and other film productions companies to continue looking for original work and taking a chance on producing it, THEN GO WATCH AND SUPPORT THIS MOVIE NOW! You will not regret it! This is one of the good ones. Don’t let X-Men make more money.

 

Is it worth the 3D experience?

We watched it in 3D out of necessity (it was the available screening at the time), and I didn’t particularly notice that it was a great addition. But it didn’t annoy me either.

So choose whatever is more comfortable to you.

Most of the movie has layers of visual effects and thus gets a pretty nice depth and look from the 3D, a look that is not strictly necessary, but which I am not hating either.

 

What mood should you be in?

It is a good, entertaining movie. Any kind of mood will do.

If you don’t want to think, let the visuals wash over you and the funny quips entertain you. If you want to use your brain, try to understand the logic behind the time-travel and everything else that is unearthed from the enemy. Some of it can be quite mind bending.

 

Further Watching

Obviously you will have to watch “Groundhog Day” (1993), a movie that is completely different from this one, but warrants a watch as a cult comedy film.

In this one, Bill Murray is a depressed and sarky journalist who gets caught in the same day (he doesn’t die, he falls asleep and wakes up the same day). “Groundhog Day” also avoids repetitiveness and boredom and is a true gem of cinema history.

For another sci-fi movie that embraces realism, try the South-African “District 9” (2009), which opted for a documentary, found footage/news footage style so seldom utilised to its fullest in mayor blockbusters with expensive visual effects. The funny thing is that the cheap style of filming, with its connotations of authenticity, makes you actually start believing the visual effects that normally function as spectacle.

 

Next week I promise I will stick to the plan and unravel another gem from the Netflix library. I have already made the blog post, I just had to postpone it to let you know about this ripper of a movie that seems to be dying at the box office in the aftermath of the X-men franchise.

If we don’t constantly want endless sequels and prequels, we need to go out and watch the quality movies out there. With “Edge of Tomorrow” you won’t go wrong!

 

Don’t miss out on the next New Release that is actually worth a cinema ticket, subscribe and get an email update whenever my next blog post is published 😀

High-tech equipment vs. WW2 aesthetics and convensions

High-tech equipment vs. WW2 aesthetics and convensions

 

Who am I?

I a freelance writer who likes to go to the movies. But I don’t like it when I waste my money on a bad film. I need to bitch about those movies. If I see a movie that is absolutely worth the trip to town, 130 NOK ticket (£13/$20), popcorn and drink expenditure, then I need to rave about it! And since I want to watch all the movies in the world, you can waste less of your time, check in with me and only watch the good ones.

In these New Release blog posts, I will pick a movie in the theatre in Norway (or while on vacation like this time) at random, and tell you if it was worth a cinema ticket. It might be good, but does it deserve your time and money, and does it benefit from a big screen and a huge crowd?

I actually buy tickets myself (unless I can get my boyfriend to be generous) and don’t have the luxury of being invited to pre-screenings, so my New Releases will be a bit late. Hopefully they will still be in a cinema near you 😉

 

Why do I think I can talk about movies?

With an over average interest in movies since watching Star Wars as an 8 year-old, and with some background in the industry, I know at least a little bit about what it takes to get a movie made, and have loads of opinions about what makes them great. But no matter my merits, it is whether or not you agree with my taste in movies (or my boyfriend’s, whose opinion will be noted if opposing my own) that will make these reviews beneficial to you.

 

Where can you find the film?

“Edge of Tomorrow” was released in Scandinavia last Friday (6th of June), and given the big names on the poster, it should be in a local cinema anywhere.

Help this movie overcome the Malificent turkey (which I haven’t watched, but which I have heard is lacking in story structure) and the X-men mediocracy. The movie with the solid story has got to win. It already has 8.2 out of 10 on ImDb.com. That tells you something!

If you like what I write, please give me a shout in the comments or sign-up to read my next blog post which I promise will be a new Netflix gem!

 

 

 

No. Although my boyfriend will disagree with me, so I guess if you like action regardless of story, then you won’t mind spending the cash.

I will follow the fold of comments already out there, and state that you probably should already have watched (and loved) the previous X-Men films to have any sort of enjoyment from this latest instalment.

And to be honest, you probably won’t need to watch it in the cinema, unless you want to support the franchise so they can get better direction and script for the next one.

 

Poster of X-men: Days of Future Pasts

The future and past founding fathers of X-Men. And Wolverine and Mystique who just never die. Ever. Maybe Mystique should get her own film too. At least now when she is played by JLaw

 

What is this film?

“X-Men: Days of Future Pasts” is the latest addition to a long line of X-Men films. If you count the Wolverine spin-offs, this will make it the seventh in total, the second of the reinvented X-Men where the story started from the beginning.

It is directed by Bryan Singer, who directed the first two films of the original trilogy. This initially gave me some hope that this film would recover what was lacking from “X-Men: First Class”, a movie that I found so bad I couldn’t shut up about it in the cinema. My boyfriend was thoroughly annoyed.

There are too many familiar faces in this movie, I will just name them by their character names.

 

Where does this movie start?

“X-Men: First Class” left us with Charles Xavier wheelchair bound after Magneto (also named Eric Lensherr) accidentally bends a bullet into his spine. He is determined to start a school for mutants. Magneto has left with a whole bunch of the other mutants, including Mystique.

“X-Men: Days of Future Pasts” starts with a gang of mutants we don’t already know who defeat some crazy, adaptable robots by transporting one of their party’s consciousness back in time to warn them of the attack.

The old gang of mutants from the original trilogy, find out about this skill and want to use it to send Wolverine back in time. He is to prevent the incidents that led to the rise in mutant hostility and the production of the robots that have now made nearly all mutants instinct.

Wolverine travels back to a moment in between “X-Men: First Class” and the original movies, so there is some time there where only comic book fans will know what was going on.

 

Is it worth a cinema ticket?

You would think that a large franchise like X-Men, with their spectacular effects and even 3D, would in it self make me want to recommend that you buy a ticket. And that was my presumption when I chose this movie for this month’s “Is it worth a cinema ticket?” entry.

Alas, this is not the case.

They forget that I want to feel something. Specifically I want to feel the community and friendship that made me want to go to Xavier’s school for gifted youngsters in the first films. That’s what made me want to be a mutant. That is what made me love the franchise.

I realize that the school is not up and running, and that where there before was a clean-cut divide between Xavier and his students, and Magneto and his minions, it is now a blur of different shades of grey as to who is with whom, who is good or bad.

But it should still be possible to find other elements that will drive home those feelings that this movie sorely needs.

 

Is it worth a 3D cinema ticket?

The 3D is not put to any good use other than to vamp up the ticket price. And that is only a benefit for everyone else but you.

I know that cheesy 3D effects make you loose the plot, are inadvisable and frankly belong in a theme park, but when you are surrounded by mutants with all different kinds of powers that involve things hovering in the air, I do find it odd that I didn’t find the 3D beneficial.

Just 2D it and buy a bigger size popcorn.

 

Is it entertaining?

My boyfriend loved it to bits. But then again he loved “X-Men First Class” so he is obviously blinded when it comes to X-Men (sorry beau).

To me, the fact that he loves it, is another notch in favour of the fact that only people who have already seen and loved the X-Men franchise, will recognize enough elements in the story to be satisfied.

There is a lot of: “Oh, who is that one again?”, “I loved that in the old ones”, “Yeah that ties up neatly with [insert fact].”

However, there is nothing wrong with making a movie just for the fans. As long as you have enough fans.

 

Why isn’t the movie good enough?

I love all the actors in the film; James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, Hugh Jackman, and of course all the other characters from the old universe.

So, this movie has all the pieces that I need to love a movie: great concept, exceptional talent and interesting relationship dynamics. They just don’t quite get there.

I want this movie to be better than it is. I want it to achieve the greatness of the reinvented Star Trek franchise. I want to be enraptures, sucked in, a believer.

Instead I am left mildly entertained and wanting to watch the old movies one more time to remember how good it used to be.

Fail.

 

What mood should you be in?

Unfortunately, the only mood you will be in need of is “Braindead Action Movie Mood”.

Perhaps be prepared for a slightly complex understanding of time travel and how that works in this film. It is fairly interesting and does create a sense of urgency towards the end.

 

Cool new mutant powers

For us who haven’t read the comic books, it is always a treat to see what kind of new powers we will witness in action. And it is often surprising powers that prove the most useful in combat situations.

Blink, an Asian mutant from the futuristic group of X-Men, can open portals anywhere. Now, this might only sound cool for escape situations or a lovely, flight-free vacation, but I will have you know that lil’ miss Blink knows how to use those powers to basically make every evil robot kill themselves.

In addition, we are introduced to Peter Quicksilver, who is very fast. And boy can you have fun with people when you are very fast. You can even break into the Pentagon, which in this plot is inherently useful and highly entertaining.

I, for one, also have some more respect for what Xavier can do with his powers. The visualisation of telepathic powers has been kicked up a notch compared to the old films. They come across cooler than before (although they are inherently the same).

Xavier is also not a 100 % good character in the new movie, a refreshing touch. I even read that there are some X-Men stories where he goes really dark, a dark side he constantly struggles to suppress. Now that would be something to watch.

 

Further watching

I did an X-Men marathon this week because of this film. I needed to be reminded of why I love these characters and that I did.

Which mutant power would you like to have (you can only have one)? I’m liking this portal conjuring power.

Next week I will take a look at a “Guilty Pleasure” movie. I define a “Guilty Pleasure” movie as a movie not considered great, often of the romantic comedy, comedy, slasher horror or brain-dead action persuasion, but which for some reason makes you watch it over and over again.

I will try and identify the elements of a “Guilty Pleasure” movie that make you want to watch them again and again and again.

Sign up and get an e-mail when my next blog post comes out.

 

The Young Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) tries to open the Cerebro, where he can connect telepathically to any human on earth, after years of using a drug that favours his legs over his abilities.

The Young Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) tries to open the Cerebro, where he can connect telepathically to any human on earth, after years of using a drug that favours his legs over his abilities.

 

Who am I?

I a freelance writer who likes to go to the movies. But I don’t like it when I waste my money on a bad film. I need to bitch about those movies. If I see a movie that is absolutely worth the trip to town, 130 NOK ticket (£13/$20), popcorn and drink expenditure, then I need to rave about it! And since I want to watch all the movies in the world, you can waste less of your time, check in with me and only watch the good ones.

In these New Release blog posts, I will pick a movie in the theatre in Norway at random, and tell you if it was worth a cinema ticket. It might be good, but does it deserve your time and money, and does it benefit from a big screen and a huge crowd?

I actually buy tickets myself (unless I can get my boyfriend to be generous) and don’t have the luxury of being invited to pre-screenings, so my New Releases will be a bit late. Hopefully they will still be in a cinema near you 😉

 

Why do I think I can talk about movies?

With an over average interest in movies since watching Star Wars as an 8 year-old, and with some background in the industry, I know at least a little bit about what it takes to get a movie made, and have loads of opinions about what makes them great.

But no matter my merits, it is whether or not you agree with my taste in movies (or my boyfriend’s, whose opinion will be noted if opposing my own) that will make these reviews beneficial to you.

 

Where can you find the film?

“X-Men: Days of Future Pasts” was released in Norway last Friday (23rd of May), and given the grand franchise, I don’t think we were late in release, so it should be in a local cinema anywhere.

The rest of the X-Men series can be found in practical box-sets for next to no money (it is 399 NOK for all 6 of them on Blu-Ray in my local DVD shop Platekompaniet)

 

If you like what I write, please give me a shout in the comments or sign-up to read my next “Guilty Pleasure” blog post next week 😉

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