Film

Mission: Impossible

by Cap'n Carrot on August 3, 2015 · 0 comments

in Film

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Although it began a series of increasingly good summer blockbuster over the course of two decades, 1996′s relaunch of the television series of the same name as a theatrical film (which introduced the world to Tom Cruise‘s most successful ongoing character in IMF Agent Ethan Hunt) is problematic at best. Poorly plotted, including a huge fuck you to fans of the original series by turning the television show’s central hero (Peter Graves) into a greedy villain (Jon Voight) selling CIA secrets to the highest bidder, the film hasn’t aged well. Turning Jim Phelps into a villain would be like rebooting Superman into a coldblooded killer. What kind of an asshole would do that?

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While Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol and Mission: Imposible III may have more dramatic weight given the personal motivations that drive each film, director Christopher McQuarrie instead focuses solely on delivering an immensely enjoyable summer popcorn flick that feels like an old Bond film (complete with multiple locations around the globe and a swagger the Daniel Craig films lack) mixed with the sensibilities of Ocean’s Eleven. The result may or may not be the best in the franchise, but it is arguably the most fun film the series has produced.

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We now have our first trailer for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 which concludes the story of Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and the revolution against the Capitol which she’s kinda-sorta the inspiration for. Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Woody Harrelson, Elizabeth Banks, Julianne Moore, Jena Malone, Natalie Dormer, Robert Knepper, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and Donald Sutherland all return. The Hunger Games franchise concludes in theaters everywhere on November 20th.

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20th Century Fox has offered up this new trailer for the sequel to the disappointing The Maze Runner. The sequel continues the trials of Thomas (Dylan O’Brien) and the other survivors of the Glade searching for answers about WCKD and the experiments each of the adolescents was subjected to. O’Brien, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Ki Hong Lee, Kaya Scodelario, and Patricia Clarkson all return and are joined this time by Rosa Salazar, Katherine McNamara, Giancarlo Esposito, Aidan Gillen, Barry Pepper, and Lili Taylor. Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials opens in theaters on September 18th.

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Head over to RazorFine to check out my list of The Top Ten Movies of 2015 (so far)

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Slow West

by Cap'n Carrot on July 20, 2015 · 0 comments

in Film

slow-west-blu-rayHow many westerns can you name where the lead character isn’t a gunfighter, sheriff, rancher, farmer, or outlaw? Written and directed by John Maclean, Slow West stars Kodi Smit-McPhee as Jay Cavendish who has arrived in the new world and headed west in search of the love of his life (Caren Pistorius) who fled her homeland with her father (Rory McCann) following an unfortunate accident which makes their return to Scotland impossible.

The far-too-trusting Jay is encountered by bounty hunter Silas Selleck (Michael Fassbender) who offers his services to keep the young man alive (while failing to state his real reasons for doing so involve the $2,000 reward on father and daughter). Over the film’s 84-minute running time the pair meet an odd assortment of characters and get into a few scrapes that, along with flashbacks to Scotland, begin to inform the audience of the tragedy surrounding Jay and his crusade.

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Adapted from Mitch Cullen‘s novel A Slight Trick of the Mind, Mr. Holmes is an intriguing, if flawed, idea offering audiences a look at the retired detective fighting senility while struggling to remember the details of his final case decades before. I say flawed because despite a terrific performance from Ian McKellen removing the keen intellect from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle‘s Sherlock Holmes also removes the character’s most definable trait leaving only a hollow shell in its place.

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Ant-Man

by Cap'n Carrot on July 17, 2015 · 0 comments

in Film

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Ant-Man marks a departure for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. With the exception of Guardians of the Galaxy, which takes place deep in outer space and far from the films that feed into The Avengers movies, every Marvel project to this point has centered around a classic Marvel character that fits a rather well-used pre-designed Silver Age mold. Rather than center another film around a genius scientist turned hero, Ant-Man casts Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) as the weathered former hero choosing instead to focus the plot of the movie on his less straight-laced successor Scott Lang (Paul Rudd).

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Ex Machina

by Cap'n Carrot on July 15, 2015 · 0 comments

in Film

ex-machina-blu-rayIn creating a film about artificial life that is almost entirely driven on emotion rather than logic writer/director Alex Garland has beautifully crafted one of the most memorable movies in recent years. The film begins with a computer programmer winning an exclusive trip to the secluded home of the company’s CEO who has far more going on than anyone associated with the world’s largest search engine could possibly guess.

In the hidden compound Caleb (Domhnall Gleeson) comes face-to-face not only with his boss, the alcoholic self-absorbed Nathan (Oscar Isaac), but also Nathan’s creation Ava (Alicia Vikander) who Caleb was handpicked to help Nathan test whether or not she is indeed the world’s first true Artificial Intelligence. Stranded miles from civilization in these odd surroundings, Caleb’s view on sentience and reality will be tested as Ava proves to be everything Nathan promises, and more.

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Minions

by Cap'n Carrot on July 10, 2015 · 0 comments

in Film

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When I learned of a Despicable Me sequel starring only the Minions I was skeptical. Although hugely popular, how do you give a full-feature film to the oddball supporting characters who speak only a mishmash gibberish language and who had been used mostly for comedy relief (with heart) in both Despicable Me and Despicable Me 2?

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