Jonathan Liebesman dishes out the plain old cheese pizza in Teenage… MoreJonathan Liebesman dishes out the plain old cheese pizza in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Sliding in at a mere 90 minutes, it is a quick viewing. Aside from a mediocre 15 minute opening, the pace picks up and moves at a quick stride the rest of the way. The problem is that the back-story is poor, the characters aren't built up, and the plot details are too simple for its own good.
A ton of action explodes its way onto the screen. Highly stylized and heavy reliance on CG is both its shining moment and downfall. The CG allows for some adrenaline packed material, but at the same time, there isn't enough down-to-earth martial arts choreography.
The mixture of CG and real life characters don't work all that well. Megan Fox and Will Arnett have terrible characters and too much screen time in comparison to the real stars of the show, the 4 turtles. Thanks to the lack of time focused on the turtles, the voice-work takes getting used to; however, it is much better than watching any of the human characters.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has its ups and downs leaving a picture that just slides on by.
Sam Taylor-Johnson's adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey puts emphasis… MoreSam Taylor-Johnson's adaptation of Fifty Shades of Grey puts emphasis on the Grey. The color grey; as in bland.
For a 2 hour story surrounding kinky sex, there is very little in the way of arousing excitement. The story is thin and it never seems to be heading in a forward direction. Integral plot details are far and few in between, leaving the sex to stand out.
On the subject of sex, there are a number of erotic scenes with a bunch of buildup for them. To associate with the R-rating, these scenes never fully engulf what makes the Fifty Shades of Grey what it's meant to be. Possible pushing to the NC-17 rating is what is needed.
Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan are attractive in their own right, but viewing their performances is very tiring. Maybe the characters are meant to be this way, but it's easier to read then view on screen.
Fifty Shades of Grey does have a few moments, and only a few. Easily passable.
Directors Chad Stahelski and David Leitch schedule a dinner… MoreDirectors Chad Stahelski and David Leitch schedule a dinner reservation with John Wick.
Despite showcasing a linear storyline with a lack of depth, John Wick manages 90 minutes of pure entertainment. The introduction and buildup do well to setup what the film unleashes the rest of the way. At that point, it's sit back and enjoy the ride.
The violence is bloody and the action is a plenty. Watching John Wick go to work is a definite highlight. Bullets hit their mark consistently, leaving the body count at a high mark.
Keanu Reeves is very monotone, which should create boredom, but the lack of dialogue and the details surrounding his character help to cover it up. Michael Nyqvist is a suitable villain, while Willem Dafoe, Adrianne Palicki, and Ian McShane successfully fill out the major supporting characters.
John Wick is as simple as its title. No more, no less. Recommended.
Paul Tibbitt knows what to get out of The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out… MorePaul Tibbitt knows what to get out of The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water.
A quick 90 minute journey from Bikini Bottom to the surface is what the story entails. Laced with obnoxious humor, as well as internal jokes, the film finds itself easy to swim along with. Familiarity with the series isn't a requirement for this viewing, but it helps since there isn't much character background to educate.
The combination of original 2D animation, 3D rendering, and live action does wonders for this film's production. It serves as nice change ups throughout the story.
There is nothing to argue about when it comes to the voices. The likes of Tom Kenny, Bill Fagerbakke, Rodger Bumpass, Clancy Brown, and Mr. Lawrence have been lending their talents to these characters for a long time. Antonio Banderas serves as the lone live action character to entertain.
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water makes waves for a fun ride. Leave it at that.
Patrick Hughes blows it all with The Expendables 3.
Opening with… MorePatrick Hughes blows it all with The Expendables 3.
Opening with balls to the walls action, the 120 minute story grasps hard at the start and again at the finish, leaving a little bit of a breather in between. The film has its ups and downs with the light plot and its lefts and rights with the action, going both old school and new school with its characters.
The body count is high and the action is over the top explosive bundled with some hit and miss CG. The violence is mild, however, leading to a PG-13 rating.
The plethora of characters may seem like a chore to follow, but it really isn't that bad, especially with little in the way of background. Sylvester Stallone carries the film on his back, while everyone else is along for the ride. Ronda Rousey is a fresh female face in a sea of male characters. Antonio Banderas is a scene stealer in his own right.
The Expendables 3 isn't afraid to let it loose, and while this takes away some of the seriousness, it's all good clean fun in the end.
Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez's Sin City: A Dame to Kill For takes… MoreFrank Miller and Robert Rodriguez's Sin City: A Dame to Kill For takes a mediocre stroll around the hood.
For an hour and 40 minutes, the story delivers itself in chapters. Chapter telling isn't a problem; however, the story-lines are poorly intertwined with each other, leaving a feeling of 3 separate arcs to follow. The film noir style that the picture employs also tones down any excitement; in the end the film feels very monotone in nature.
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For goes black and white with a spot of color for its presentation. It gets tiresome fairly quickly, hampering the film visually. It is what it is, but the violence never feels cringe-worthy and the nudity never looks as extravagant as it should.
The cast is nicely chosen. Despite a bland performance, Mickey Rourke finds himself with a likeable character. Eva Green always finds ways to stand out. She truly is a dame to kill for. Powers Booth is a nice watch.
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For passes by at a steady pace, yet when the end credits start to roll, it's hard to feel like anything happened.
The swords come out in Masahiro Ando's Sword of the Stranger.
If… MoreThe swords come out in Masahiro Ando's Sword of the Stranger.
If there is an opening sequence that gets the job done, this anime has it. Blood splatters and body parts go flying in what proves to be a taste of things to come. Granted, the middle of this 100 minute picture does slow to pace itself, the plethora of characters to follow are enough to keep the story alive.
The swordplay is stylized and the violence is bloody. The incorporation of the Chinese in a Japanese setting provides high potential for the amusing action sequences. Visually, the characters are fitting for a Japanese anime.
The cast that employs the voices for the characters work well with the provided dialogue. Tomoya Nagase and Yuri Chinen carry the film most of the way.
Action adventure animes come in good quantites and Sword of the Stranger is a better than average one.
David Koepp's Mortdecai isn't a smooth traverse around the continents;… MoreDavid Koepp's Mortdecai isn't a smooth traverse around the continents; yet somehow manages to stay the course.
Sporting nearly 110 minutes of mustache, and riddled with sexual innuendos, Mortdecai holds interests with its missing art painting plot. At the same time however, the problem with the story is that it moves quite hastily and coupled with the variety of characters and over the top moments, it becomes quite hard to grasp.
The laughs aren't as many as this picture warrants, unless sexuality is the seed to laughter. The violence is mild and there are only a couple F bombs, which apparently is enough for the R-rating.
It's hard to argue with Johnny Depp. His reactionary expressions and line delivery fit well into this outrageous art dealer of a character. Ewan McGregor, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Paul Bettany provide excellent supporting characters around Depp.
Mortdecai has its share of flaws, but this picture gets a passing grade with its comedic style.