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  • paulywalnuts 3:56 am on September 9, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Karl Urban, , Riddick, Vin Diesel   

    Riddick Movie Review | Vin Diesel Recaptures the Magic 

    Riddick Movie Review | Vin Diesel Recaptures the Magic

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    Vin Diesel returns to the franchise that helped launch his career, despite never gaining more than a cult following.  It’s been nearly ten years since the franchise tried to go Star Wars on us with “The Chronicles of Riddick.”  Writer/Director David Twohy strips down the good vs. evil for the sake of the Universe, and returns the character to familiar territory.  Just as in Riddick’s first appearance in “Pitch Black,” this movie is mostly about man vs. some otherworld monsters, and everyone else getting in the way.  It’s a simpler story, but the stars of this movie pull it off and recapture the magic that’s been missing from this franchise for … well, almost ten years.

    The movie opens with Riddick injured and alone, and being hunted by a pack of wild creatures.  Flashbacks explain how he goes from leading a race of warriors at the end of “Chronicles” to where he is today – I won’t ruin it for you.  The first act is all about Riddick recovering, adapting to his new planet, and discovering the dangerous predators that lurk in dark.  Riddick finds a mercenary outpost, and sends a distress beacon.  Two teams of bounty hunters arrive to hunt and capture Riddick, but not all is what it seems.  Santana (Jordi Molla) is the sadistic leader of one group of bounty hunters, including David Bautista.  Matthew Nable plays the leader of the second group of bounty hunters, including Katee Sackoff and Bokeem Woodbine.  The bounty hunters don’t like each other, and the second team of them may know more about Riddick than they’re letting on … they sure aren’t trying to collect the dead or alive bounty on Riddick’s head.  11 vs 1 … but the odds tend to favor the one guy that has his name in the title.  And let’s not forget the monsters lurking in every dark corner, either.

    The pace of Riddick is a lot slower, closer to “Pitch Black” and “Alien” before that – and movie is better for it.  Twohy’s directing focuses less on surprises, and more on making sure each scene is dramatic, tense, and fulfilling.  The best scenes are the nighttime hunts where Riddick can see in the dark, and his adversaries (and the audience) is a step behind in figuring out what just happened.  Molla and Katee Sackoff in particular make the most of their screen time, though David Bautista is neither funny enough to be comedy relief, nor charming enough to be loved.  His career may yet mirror the Rock’s, but this movie won’t do it for him.  Everything else in the movie – delivers.

    Watch this if you were a fan of the original “Pitch Black.”  It recaptures the magic, and doesn’t try to be a great movie for anyone but those fans.  And you know what – it doesn’t have to be.

    IMDB Rating:
    7.2 out of 10

    Rotten Tomatoes Rating:
    60% of critics liked it / 68% of the audience liked it

    This (grooms)man’s Rating:
    7 out of 10 – it delivers what you want it to deliver.  Fanboys and fangirls will be satisfied.  If you don’t know if you’re a fanboy/fangirl, this isn’t your movie.

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  • Justin 3:47 pm on May 18, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , Karl Urban, , , , , , ,   

    Star Trek Into Darkness | Parodying Star Trek in a Canon Star Trek Movie 

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    Star Trek Into Darkness, one of the biggest movies of the year hit theatres this week, and while overall reviews for this movie are very good, this is my official letdown (for now) of the summer as Star Trek Into Darkness is essentially a canon trek movie that is parodying a previous Star Trek movie; and the best one for that matter.  Star Trek Into Darkness  stumbles around looking for character arcs, themes, and a compelling, well-constructed plot. 

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    The movie starts off fairly strong with a Indiana Jones esque intro-event with Captain Kirk (Chris Pine) taking action during a away mission that saves Spock (Zach Quinto) and gets Kirk into some trouble with Starfleet as he is, as per usual, breaking regulations, but that’s what Kirk does best. Shortly after, Earth ( a futuristic London specifically) is bombed by a mysterious person names John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) that Kirk and the crew of enterprise are soon commanded to pursue. The crew is all back with John Cho as Sulu, Zoe Saldana as Uhura, Simon Pegg as Scotty, Karl Urban as Doctor McCoy, and Anton Yelchin as Chekov. Also we have newcomer Alice Eve as Carol Wallace (or is it Marcus…?).  And of course Benedict Cumberbatch as John Harrison. Though unfortunately Karl Urban/McCoy and Yelchin/Chekov are completely wasted. Cumberbatch’s performance is the best among all of them during the movie without a doubt.

    Again, the movie has a very promising beginning. And throughout the movie, as expected, the visuals and the audio are great.  And there are several action sequences that are very well done (though most have been seen before…and so are also alittle forgettable), but while JJ Abrams’ 2009 Star Trek was fun, witty, and smart with a opening that was quite epic (http://groomsmenonfilm.com/2013/05/16/top-10-star-trek-movie-moments-3/) Star Trek Into Darkness is not smart at all, and is unbelievably generic in its storytelling.  Now I cannot go into too much detail as to why I say Into Darkness parodies Star Trek because I’ll  be in spoiler territory, (but don’t worry scroll down to see it).  Yes your eyes will be on the screen for the entire 2 hours, there are certainly some laughs, and great sequences, but I honestly expected much more than a story that has been done  before. I think it’s average B reviews are appropriate; its a fine summer movie.

     

    Star Trek Into Darkness Grade: B/B-

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    [Okay here comes the spoiler warning!]

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    [SPOILERS BELOW!]

    Now, for the 800lb gorilla in the room. Yes John Harrison is Kahn. And I’m actually totally okay with this. The problem is the absolutely unoriginal story telling here. Writers Orci, Kurtzman, Lindelof, and  Director Abrams had four years to create a Star Trek that was their own, and they ended up stealing someone else’s movie.  Not only did they rip off a better film, but their script is still filled with lazy cheats, and building the story around the set pieces rather than vice-versa. The whole purpose of the alternate universe was to create new adventures.

    It’s truly Kahn in name only. A new story would require originality and effort, and no one wants to put in the hard work.  Instead, they continue to rip off Wrath of Khan.  They plagiarize Spock’s famous death scene but instead decide to “kill” Kirk.  There’s no real weight to this death (given there’s no decades-long relationship/we’ve only seen them together in two movies and we all knew Kahn’s blood would save someone in the end), so we know Kirk will be fine.  Abrams and his writers pat themselves on the back for reversing the roles, even though that role reversal doesn’t tie into any earlier conflict.  The death scene has NOTHING on the original scene; all I saw was two new actors re-acting the original scene; I almost thought it was a joke, I couldn’t believe it. Seriously  I almost started laughing. And Spock looking down at Kirk’s body and yelling Kahn was just embarrassing and that did it for me (Seriously he doesn’t even yell Kahn well….) Oh yeah and then Uhura just beams down and shoots Kahn in the back?!? (And don’t get me started on using the original Spock (Leonard Nimoy) to TELL Spock (Quinto) that Kahn is dangerous …)

    In Star Trek II, Kahn may be the villian, but the movie embodies everything about Kirk. The Wrath of Khan brings him a deadly nemesis from his past, who then forces Kirk to learn a harsh lesson, and lose his closest friend.  The movie embodies the best of the original series (the tense, naval-style battles; outsmarting rather than outgunning the enemy; an admiration for the creative and destructive power of science), but you can enjoy it without having seen a single episode. But if you’ve seen The Original Series, Spock’s death has serious weight.  It’s the end of a decades-long friendship, and the line “I have been, and always shall be, your friend,” gets the tears flowing.

    I clearly love the original Star Trek II: Wrath of Kahn, so most people won’t feel the way I do. Again it’s a fine summer movie; but if you want the real deal, go watch Star Trek II: The Wrath of Kahn. There is a reason it’s considered a classic.

     
  • Justin 5:50 pm on December 17, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Anton Yelchin, , , , , Karl Urban, , , , ,   

    New Trailer for Star Trek Into Darkness 

    A new trailer for Star Trek Into Darkness has gone online. Unlike the previous teaser, this one is far more melancholy and epic as we hear Pike (Bruce Greenwood) tell Kirk, “There’s greatness in you, but not an ounce of humility. But there’s going to come a moment when you’re wrong about that. And you’re going to get yourself, and everyone under your command, killed.” From there, we see the epic action director J.J. Abrams is going to unleash. Details on the story are still scarce, but a teaser trailer never gives those away. They’re meant to entice, and this new trailer is even better than the first one.

    The film stars Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Benedict Cumberbatch, Karl Urban, Anton Yelchin, Zoe Saldana, John Cho, Simon Pegg, Alice Eve, Peter Weller, and Noel Clarke.  Star Trek Into Darkness opens in 3D on May 17, 2013.

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  • Justin 4:28 pm on December 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Bruce Greenwood, , , , Karl Urban, Zach Quinto,   

    Star Trek Into Darkness | Official Teaser 

    Star Trek Into Darkness Official Teaser is now online and it looks pretty badass. JJ Abrams returns to direct the sequel to the 2009 summer blockbuster that has revived the great Star Trek franchise.

    The movie is supposedly the Wrath of Kahn / Dark Knight for the series and again, looks great.

    Star Trek Into Darkness will see the entire cast returning including Chris Pine, Zach Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, John Cho, Bruce Greenwood as well as some new faces including Benedict Cumberbatch.

    Star Trek heads Into Darkness May 17, 2013.

     

     
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