Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017)

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Yoda: The greatest teacher, failure is.


Starring: Daisy Ridley. Mark Hamill, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Carrie Fisher, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels and Gwendoline Christie, dir. Rian Johnson (Brick, Looper)

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Cinematographer: Steve Yedlin (Looper, Unknown, Brick)

cinemagraph source: benlmc on r/Cinemagraphs
The Last Jedi distributor: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Click here for my review of The Last Jedi.

Call Me By Your Name (2017): A Beautifully Executed Picture Led By The Equally Brilliant Pairing Of Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet (Review)

 

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[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media]
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Based on the 2007 novel of the same name, Call Me By Your Name follows 17-year-old Elio Perlman (Timothée Chalamet) as he spends the summer with his family in their 17th Century Italian villa along with his father’s doctoral student, Oliver (Armie Hammer). The film also stars Michael Stuhlbarg, Amira Casar, Esther Garrel, and Victoire Du Bois and is directed by Luca Guadagnino (I Am Love, A Bigger Splash).

“But to feel nothing so as not to feel anything – what a waste.”

My Thoughts On The Characters And Story

Set in the summer of 1983 when the Sony Walkman was all the rage and people just showed up at your house without prior cell phone confirmation, Call Me By Your Name delivers on a gorgeously heartfelt, emotional witty punch in the gut that I absolutely adored watching. Following my watch on a Tuesday night and expressing my adoration for it on Instagram, my best friend who I was planning on meeting up with the next day proved that fate exists by stating she was going to ask whether I wanted to watch the film when we went out. After thinking about it for about a morsel of half a second, I sent the showtimes for Wednesday and basked in the glory of this phenomenal film for a second time less than 24 hours after my initial watch. It is a surprisingly rewatchable film although I must warn you that frequent bouts of tears will endure on subsequent watches, similarly to when you watched it for the very first time. 

Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet excel in every scene they appear in. As the story mostly follows Elio’s perspective, Chalamet shines as a young man struggling to understand the flood of feelings that plague him. And honestly, if you encounter a human being who possesses even an ounce of charisma that Armie Hammer has, who wouldn’t briefly picture what their lives would look like together? The acclaim Chalamet is receiving (particularly with his recent Academy Award for Best Actor nomination) is infinitely well deserved. I do think it’s quite a travesty that Hammer is not receiving similar awards consideration for the Best Supporting category. He not only works incredibly well with Chalamet on screen, his presence is known and felt throughout the film – I felt a jolt of excitement every time he appeared because I knew he brought his A game to this role and his character is elevated immensely because of it. 

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[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media]
There are also no weak links in the supporting cast, Amira Casar and Michael Stuhlbarg execute virtually flawless performances as the Perlman parents. The refined monologue you’ve probably heard of that caused Frank Ocean to declare a new change in parent will seep into your very core with how eloquent the words are and how gentle Stuhlbarg’s approach is. While discussing the scene, he provided some insight into what he believed his character was thinking at that moment and how he wanted to “be honest as a parent”:

“… I think he’s offering up a part of himself to his son at a time when his son needs it. I understand that his father is not just a father, he’s a person and had a life before he met Elio’s mother. He has some, perhaps, joy at the fact that his son has felt something so deeply and perhaps a sense of regret from his own past that he didn’t take a road that he wanted to. Or maybe a road he wanted to take and did take and it didn’t workout. I think he’s offering up a part of himself to his son that his son needs at that moment.”

As someone whose favourite films revolve around the concept of characters in minimal locations simply talking to each other (see: Richard Linklater’s Before trilogy or 12 Angry Men), Call Me By Your Name provides a captivating look at sexuality and the internal struggles/complexities involved with it. The film takes its time to develop the characters, provides a mesmerizing sense of location and allows the audience to feel as though they are present within every scene. They are a fly on the wall, watching how these individuals with their own difficulties and joys communicate with one another verbally and through gestural actions. The various symbolic motifs present provide a further layer of depth to the film that anyone whose interested in analyzing film will have a field day with. Yet it does well in not bogging the actual film down with heavy-handed imagery, the nuances present will give those interested in further watches something to look out for. On my second watch, I paid close attention to Guadagnino’s use of flies and the various colours worn by the characters because, as Breaking Bad has taught us, everything means something.

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[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media]
Besides the obvious emotional components that make up Call Me By Your Name, it is remarkably funny. I found myself laughing more than I anticipated going into a film centered around lovers who will probably never be because thanks society. If the press circuit for the film has shown anything, it’s that Hammer and Chalamet genuinely care about each other and appreciates the talent one another brings to the film. It’s an absolute joy seeing them work together and, most importantly, their relationship feels like a true progression of a same-sex relationship between two compelling individuals. 

How Were The Other Aspects Of Call Me By Your Name?

The work of Sayombhu Mukdeeprom as cinematographer is nothing short of fantastic. Not a single frame is wasted in the film, every sequence is meticulously crafted by Guadagnino and his DP, taking the time to develop not only the characters but the various astounding landscapes present absolutely everywhere

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[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media]
The soundtrack is also a vital aspect of the film that I’ve listened to on repeat since my watches as it contains the toe-tapping talents of The Psychedelic Furs, Loredana Bertè, Bandolero, Giorgio Moroder and Joe Esposito. The clip of Hammer dancing to The Furs’ “Love My Way” was how I originally found out about the film and the way the song is utilized is honestly one (or 2) of the major highlights of the film for me.

Sufjan Stevens composed two songs featured prominently in the film, “Visions of Gideon” and the Oscar nominated for Best Original Song, “Mystery Of Love.” I cannot wait for the upcoming Blu-Ray release so I can constantly remain in awe of everything about this masterpiece… Also for any Canadians out there, in certain sequences Chalamet looks identical to a young version of our current radiating specimen of a Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau. 

[Credit: Sony Pictures/Mongrel Media] | Made with Giphy

If you’re looking for a heartfelt, witty and aesthetically gorgeous drama featuring two phenomenal lead actors, check out Call Me By Your Name

Call Me By Your Name receives a coveted 5/5 Matt Damon heads.

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featured image credit: sony pictures/mongrel media

Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017): This IS The Star Wars I’m Looking For (Non-Spoiler Review)

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[Credit: Lucasfilm/Disney]
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Star Wars: The Last Jedi is the eighth installment of the Star Wars franchise and follows Rey (Daisy Ridley) as she develops her newly discovered powers of the Force while the First Order does battle with the Resistance. The film stars Adam Driver, Mark Hamill, Oscar Isaac, John Boyega, Carrie Fisher, Andy Serkis, Kelly Marie Tran, Laura Dern and Benicio del Toro and is directed by Rian Johnson (Brick, Looper).

My Thoughts On The Characters And Story

When it was initially announced that director Rian Johnson would helm a new Star Wars trilogy before Episode VIII released, excitement and hesitation simultaneously settled in for me. Clearly, Lucasfilm and Kathleen Kennedy herself adored what Johnson did with The Last Jedi which translated to them entrusting a brand new trilogy to him, however the uncertainty arose because I thought, “man what if I hate what he does with Last Jedi?!” I’m in the camp that firmly believes the more, the merrier – If I hear they want to release 3 new Star Wars flicks a year I say hey, that’s great! Would we possibly get some films set during the KOTOR era? The one goddamn era every single fan has been pining for since the release of those legendary video games….

Coming out of my screening of The Last Jedi, I am ecstatic to say I officially cannot wait to see what Johnson brings to a new trilogy because I absolutely adored Star Wars: The Last Jedi

[Credit: Lucasfilm/Disney] | Tenor.com
As someone who liked The Force Awakens very much, there was something lacking within it. Last year’s Rogue One was actually my favourite recent SW installment of the two because it felt like a Star Wars film that I’ve never seen before. It pushed buttons that have never really been pushed before and, after watching it twice in theatres and once at home since, I wondered whether another Star Wars film would have a similar effect on me. I still need a few watches of Last Jedi to see whether it definitively surpasses Rogue One in my rankings but one of the first things I said when I exited the theatre was “… I think I liked that more than Rogue One.” 

From its stellar opening sequence to its final moments, I was hooked throughout. I appreciated the fact that there were actual space battles occurring utilizing some of the best digital effects the industry has to offer. Although the usage of the beloved lightsaber is used sparingly, it is depicted effectively. When the humming of the saber penetrated my ear holes, I felt it. I savoured it. There are certain instances where characters are using the sabers and I wanted to slow down time to properly ingest everything I was witnessing. It’s one of those instances where, as you’re watching it, you make an addition to your internal checklist saying “remember to check YouTube every single day to see if someone upload this scene on there.”

The implementation of the humour was actually one of my favourite aspects of the film. What is commonly seen in the additions to the MCU (Thor: Ragnarok being the latest), many of the jokes featured in their superhero story fall flat during the more dramatic moments of the films which undercut the emotional impact certain scenes have. The Last Jedi features a number of comedic beats inserted throughout that I felt worked effectively in the scene. I found there being a perfect balance (wink, balance) between the humour and dramatic moments particularly during one instance where we’re introduced to a crew of Judgmental Fish Nuns who are basically the embodiment of myself. 

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[Credit: Lucasfilm/Disney]
I thoroughly enjoyed watching the arcs of all the main crew progress and I absolutely adore the route they went with the iconic Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill). Learning more about why he became the person he is in Episode VIII, 30+ years following Episode VI and the effect the Jedi/Force had on him was spectacular to see. He is an embattled, melancholic and agonized individual who has experienced some major shit throughout his journey that started him out as a simple farm boy destined for greatness. How he chooses to “train” Rey (Daisy Ridley) only furthers my excitement for seeing how the next generation of Star Wars characters handles their respective responsibilities within the galaxy. Rey is easily my favourite character of this new trilogy and I love how Ridley embodies her vigor and spirit. Of course, it’s always an emotional roller coaster seeing anything related to the late, great Carrie Fisher and I thoroughly enjoyed the decisions made for her legendary character, Princess Leia.

There isn’t really anything critical I can say about the rest of the stellar cast – Oscar Isaac as Poe DAMNeron will forever be my favourite thing ever. John Boyega‘s Finn matures exponentially in Last Jedi and I just love seeing it. An issue I originally had with The Force Awakens was Adam Driver as Kylo Ren and I wondered how he would do as he grew more comfortable in the role 2 years later. He is definitely better in Last Jedi particularly toward the beginning of the third act but, again, I wasn’t too much of a fan of his portrayal during the first two acts. Domhnall Gleeson AKA The-Guy-Who-Is-Starring-In-Everything returns as the ambitious General Hux and I very much enjoyed watching him gleefully express both his joyful moments and immense frustrations when dealing with the Resistance. Kelly Marie Tran makes her debut as Rose Tico who was a charming addition although certain components of her relationship with a character felt a bit forced. Laura Dern also made a fantastic addition to the Star Wars crew as Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo. She can honestly have amazing chemistry with a potted plant so I thoroughly enjoyed every time she was on screen and I adored the lore of her character. I took issue with a particular decision Holdo makes that could’ve easily been avoided, although I understand why she felt the need to make it. Overall I felt the relationships developed between certain characters were executed well.

[Credit: Lucasfilm/Disney]

How Were The Other Aspects Of The Last Jedi?

Johnson knows how to film the sweeping, epic shots that make an impact watching it on the big screen. The Snoke room and everything that happens in that red room of terror is absolutely marvelous. I enjoyed the inclusion of the music much more in Last Jedi than I did Force Awakens; a brief, fleeting moment involving just Rey as her Theme plays in the background is one of my absolute favourite moments of the entire film. There’s also a fantastically killer sequence involving her and another character toward the end of the film that I cannot say more about for fear of spoiling! There is also a disgustingly wonderful tracking shot inspired by the very first Academy Award winner for Best Picture, Wings (1927) that made me way too giddy when I initially noticed it. 

As we all know, The Last Jedi‘s divisive has been known in the online world and I am in the camp who thoroughly enjoyed where the story went and how they chose to develop these characters. While it isn’t without flaws, the ultimate enjoyment and pure satisfaction I felt coming out of the theatre and writing about it now makes me ecstatic for Episode IX and the Johnson-helmed trilogy.

Side note that doesn’t really pertain to the filmCan we PLEASE though, real talk, f’real be blessed with a “Duel Of The Fates“-esque pulsating, orgasmic-inducing song for at least one of the upcoming Star Wars? While I hold a genuine disdain for a number of components of the Prequels, every human on Earth can agree that that song is one of the best things to have come out of it. You’re welcome for my great suggestion, Disney.


Star Wars: The Last Jedi receives 4.5/5 Matt Damon heads.

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featured image source: Lucasfilm/Disney

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The Disaster Artist (2017): I Cannot Tell You My Thoughts, They’re Confidential (Review)

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[Credit: Warner Bros.]

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The Disaster Artist tells the true story of a man with a dream named Tommy Wiseau (James Franco) who enlists the help of his friend Greg Sestero (Dave Franco) to create real, Hollywood non-Mickey Mouse movie called The Room. The film also stars Alison Brie, Seth Rogen, Ari Graynor, Josh Hutcherson, Jacki Weaver, Hannibal Buress, Jason Mantzoukas, Nathan Fielder, Paul Scheer and Zac Efron and is directed by James Franco (In Dubious Battle, The Sound and the Fury).

My Thoughts On The Characters And Story

As someone who has seen The Room a shockingly disgusting number of times, it’s a truly terrible movie. I’m not sure why I have seen it as much as I have, it’s mostly wanting to show my friends and family a movie that is so undeniably horrendous & incoherent because ‘masochist’ is my middle name. It’s also insanely quotable, I probably say “don’t tahch me motherfahker” on a daily basis. After watching the film for the first time a few years ago, I learned that Greg Sestero AKA a beautiful specimen of a human wrote a book detailing the behind-the-scenes experience of filming this strange picture and providing insight as much as he could into the mind of Tommy Wiseau, a guy I don’t think of as a visionary or a misunderstood soul. He’s kind of an asshole and is probably an alien who’s traveled back in time to deliver a movie he thought humans would enjoy. 

So when I heard about James Franco taking the reins of filming an adaptation of Sestero’s informative book, I was ridiculously excited and this film really delivers on the humour component – I found myself laughing horrendously throughout the film which is certainly a testament to the screenwriters because I thought I would only laugh at the sequences involving the actual filming of The Room. James’ portrayal of Wiseau is fantastically brilliant, I appreciated wholeheartedly that he wasn’t doing a Wiseau impression because any exaggerated Wiseau diction would’ve gotten old real quick. It was funny initially hearing him when he arrives on screen and as the film progressed, I grew more used to it. The depiction of Wiseau is mostly surface level which isn’t inherently a bad thing, however with how rich the source material is (seriously, everyone should read The Disaster Artist) and, not to mention, how ridiculous the actual man is, it would’ve been nice to see more of a deeper dive into the psyche of Wiseau. 

[Credit: Warner Bros.] | Tenor.com
Younger Franco as Greg Sestero, he was enjoyable to watch on screen however he kind of had a burrowed frow expression for essentially the whole movie. If you watch any interview with Sestero, he speaks in a very calm… soothing… manner that Dave simply doesn’t showcase. In terms of his relationship with Wiseau on-screen, both Francos unsurprisingly have great chemistry together. I enjoyed the various callbacks sprinkled throughout the film, particularly involving the seriousness of the pinky swear. 

The secondary cast is brilliant; Zac Efron is easily the standout for me. He appears in only one or two scenes but he absolutely NAILS his performance as Chris R. (Not just “Chris”… Chris R. This is real Hollywood movie). It’s always nice watching Trudy Campbell AKA Alison Brie appear in anything and watching her act alongside her husband and brother-in-law made me happy. The Great Jacki Weaver‘s portrayal of Claudette is fantastic and reading about how serious the real-life Carolyn Minnott took her role in The Room was simply heartbreaking for me (she actually fainted of heat stroke during filming and took it all in stride. This woman is a national treasure). 

[Credit: Warner Bros.] | Tenor
As the film progressed toward the end of the second act and more conflict was needed to be inserted, this was where it kind of fizzled out for me. It seemed like an argument had to be had at this particular moment to begin the conventional sad montage. While I enjoyed watching the film, my excitement dwindled a bit following that however the final few moments where side-by-sides were shown were a fantastic way to end it. 

Prepare For Some Serious Night At The Roxbury-Esque Head Bobs

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‘A Night At The Roxbury’ | Paramount Pictures

The soundtrack is one of my favourite aspects of the film, kudos goes out to the ones responsible for choosing the quintessential late ’90s/early 2000s tunes that had me politely stomping my foot and nodding my head along in pure jubilation. 

‘The Disaster Artist’ | Warner Bros.

I’d recommend checking out The Room first or at least being familiar with it prior to watching The Disaster Artist (but seriously, just watch it) and then you may bask in the glory of seeing the characters re-enacted by some of Hollywood’s best.

The Disaster Artist receives 3.5/5 Matt Damon heads. 

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featured image source: Warner Bros.

Lady Bird (2017): This Remarkably Witty Coming-Of-Age Story Will Have You Fill The Six Inches Left Open For The Holy Spirit With Laughs And Tears (Review)

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Lady Bird | A24
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Lady Bird tells the story of Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson (Saoirse Ronan) as she maneuvers her way through the beloved high school experience and explores her various personal relationships with family, friends and college. The film also stars Laurie Metcalf, Tracy Letts, Lucas Hedges, Timothée Chalamet, Beanie Feldstein, Stephen McKinley Henderson, and Lois Smith and is the directorial debut of Greta Gerwig.

My Thoughts On The Characters And Story

There are certain films where you find yourself immersed entirely with everything occurring on screen and when it concludes, you’re left genuinely disappointed because you enjoyed it that much and are craving for more – Lady Bird is one of those movies. 

From the talented mind of actress and screenwriter Greta GerwigLady Bird starts at a high and continues through its 94 minute run time, providing witty quip after another and depicting compelling characters who are delightfully fleshed out. With a coming-of-age story set in a high school, filmmakers always run the risk of featuring tropey teen after stereotypical mean girl in a universe of perpetual eye-rolling courtesy of the out-of-touch adults who are dopey because the script calls for it. This film encompasses what I love about certain films of the genre (particularly Mean GirlsNapoleon Dynamite and The Edge Of Seventeen) and adds a new perspective through the eyes of Lady Bird (the name was given to her by her, in case you were wondering). 

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Lady Bird | A24

Referring to Lady Bird as simply “enjoyable” is doing it a major disservice. It encompasses virtually everything I want to see in this kind of movie: compelling characters, a simple story, witty dialogue, killer soundtrack/score and an overall feeling of… just… somethingSaoirse Ronan is perfect in this role. She works so unbelievably well with every single person in the film whether they are a vital component of it or the extraest of extras. Her camaraderie with Beanie Feldstein’s “Julie” and Feldstein’s incredible delivery of her sharp dialogue was delightful to watch. Laurie Metcalf gives a heartbreakingly spectacular performance as the matriarch of the McPherson household. There were a number of mother/daughter instances that resonated with me so hard. Lest we forget Tracy Letts’ portrayal of the remarkably sweet Larry McPherson. Lucas Hedges and this year’s breakout star of Call Me By Your Name, Timothée Chalamet, provided some stellar performances as well.

I also thoroughly appreciated the lack of monstrously exaggerated sequences that aren’t within the realm of belief. The moments of conflict feel real because these characters are so well written, you genuinely believe and sympathize with what has transpired. One particular moment actually had me cover my eyes because I was terrified at what was going to happen (it involved a friend telling someone they were coming over).

“Thank you, Greta Gerwig, for terrifying me more than many horror films can accomplish.”

I placed myself in the respective person’s shoes and wanted to shove my head into a computer because the embarrassment was overwhelming and it honestly wasn’t that big of a deal – That is what teenagehood is. Man, that’s what being a human is but particularly when you’re on the cusp of adulthood and want nothing more than to be accepted amongst your peers so the little white lies come out. Thank you, Greta Gerwig, for terrifying me more than many horror films can accomplish. 

How Were The Other Aspects Of Lady Bird?

Lady Bird‘s 2002 setting provides an interesting backdrop as there is a sense of simplicity to it since we’re still a few years away from total technological control, however this is a post-9/11 world. Like, a few months post. The societal innocence we became accustomed to was shattered with heightened security beginning to be implemented and the barrage of bombings occurring in the Middle East. The insanity the world was experiencing at the time is referenced in the quiet, sereneness that is Lady Bird.

Lady Bird | A24

For every threat of mind controlling chips in cell phones, there is a pool party where former *NSYNC member, Justin Timberlake’s modern classic “Cry Me A River” plays in the background. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. There isn’t anyone I’d want to experience it with (again) than Lady Bird. 

The film’s gorgeous-looking aesthetic is also positively wondrous. There truly isn’t a dull scene throughout its entire duration, I was genuinely enthralled with not only what the characters were saying but the mesmerizing cinematography that accompanied what was on screen. I had no idea what I was expecting with Lady Bird and what I got out of it was a phenomenally entertaining film that spoke to me entirely. 

Lady Bird | A24

If you’re looking for a sharply written coming-of-age film with characters you actually care about, check out Lady Bird.

Lady Bird receives a coveted 5/5 Matt Damon heads.

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featured image credit: a24

Justice League (2017): An Enjoyable Addition To The DCEU That Really Makes Me Crave More Wonder Woman (Review)

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[Credit: Warner Bros.[
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The League Of Extraordinary Justice follows a changed and inspired Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) as he enlists the help of Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) and three other powerful beings to face Steppenwolf (Ciaran Hinds), a great enemy looking for his Mother… Boxes. The film also stars Ezra Miller, Ray Fisher, Jason Momoa, Henry Cavill and Amy Adams and is directed by Zack Snyder

My Thoughts On The Characters And Story

In a universe filled with flying robotic insects and costumed vigilantes,  I think the most unbelievable part of it is that the Kents still haven’t fully paid off that farm. It’s been in their family for like, a millennia. Did Pa Kent’s life insurance not cover intentional death by hurricane? 

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[Credit: Warner Bros.] | Tenor
Another day, another superhero film arrives that divides fan bases when all I ask is, can’t we all just get along? As I’ve mentioned throughout my various comic book film reviews, I am neither a Marvel or DC-stan. I like when an MCU installment showcases the muscly Thor utilizing his God-like powers set to “Immigrant Song”, I like when a DC movie illustrates the insane ass kicking abilities of Wonder Woman. I will say for Justice League, it is my second favourite DCEU movie behind this year’s unbelievably phenomenal Patty Jenkins’-directed Wonder Woman. Gal Gadot has grown on me throughout her 3 appearances as the Princess of Themyscira (Batman V Superman and WW being the other two) and I honestly found myself waiting for the next scene featuring her or some other Amazonian entity. I enjoyed Gadot’s performance in Justice League despite there being certain moments where she had a frozen stern look on her face or the instances where an atrociously obvious CG green screen is featured in the background. 

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[Credit: WB] | Tenor
Battfleck was around as the spearheader of the Justice League. Affleck read his lines accordingly and had a few quick quips, he really gave the embodiment of a serviceable performance. The new members of the League, Barry Allen/Flash (Miller), Victor Stone/Cyborg (Fisher) and Arthur Curry/Aquaman (Momoa) were welcome additions. The Flash’s frequent hesitation to enter battle was hysterical, Miller absolutely crushed it in the role. Fisher portrayed the Cyborg with a chip on his shoulder effectively; I don’t want to say it was a “robotic” performance because that’d be too easy but it was relatively robotic.

Jason Momoa + his gorgeous locks appear as Aquaman and while I enjoyed him as the character, there was one specific sequence involving his underwater world of Atlantis wherein he spoke with a fellow Aquaperson that was just… Not very good. Momoa is clearly a powerful presence on screen (as seen during his run on Game Of Thrones) so hopefully his performance is a bit more endearing in his James Wan-directed standalone set for release next December. 

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[Credit: WB] | Tenor
Steppenwolf, portrayed by the fantastically brilliant Julius Caesar Ciaran Hinds, uttered as many generic villainous catchphrases as possible, it became thoroughly entertaining after awhile. I do like how they connected S-Wolf to the other Leaguers(?) Is that the proper terminology? However, the visually muddled vomit that were he and his cronies every time they appeared on screen became a bit tiresome. 

As far as the actual getting together of the crew, I thought it was executed effectively. My favourite getting-a-crew-together sequence hails from the 2001 Steven Soderbergh masterwork, Ocean’s Eleven so when these kinds of plot devices come about, I usually wonder how it would hypothetically stack up against Ocean’s. Of course, I wouldn’t dismiss another film because it doesn’t exactly fit the brilliant mold of what Ocean’s did, I’m not a cinephilic psychopath. Batfleck did his thing, trying his best to monotonously convince other people to save the world (a common occurrence seen in many modern superhero films… JUST HOW OFTEN IS THE WORLD IN IMMINENT DOOM FROM OTHERWORLDLY CREATURES?!) Every character had their respective reservations (or not) and it was satisfying seeing them all ultimately come together. 

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[Credit: WB] | Tenor
I do wish there was more of a dynamic between the crew. Every cast member seems to have a smashing good time together during interviews and such (Sadfleck moments not including) that didn’t really translated within the film. Their chemistry fell sort of flat for the most part. There were definitely sequences, however, where I felt the genuine chemistry/camaraderie building between them – A specific one involving the Lasso Of Truth was frigging brilliant

How Were The Other Aspects Of Justice League

The technical components of the film are where it gets kind of hairy. It’s definitely more aesthetically pleasing than what was seen in previous DC incarnations like Suicide Squad or BvS, however there were glaringly obvious moments where you knew the cast was wandering around a sound stage a la the Prequels. Also… That Henry Cavill upper lip/mustache work. Yowza.

It was nice seeing Cavill’s Superman smile and throw the charm on for just a split second, something I hope we see more of as the DCEU trudges along, ie. Henry Cavill’s Superman actually enjoying where he’s at for a moment or two. It’s been said ad nauseam but Cavill is a remarkably charismatic human being (see: 2015’s The Man From UNCLE) so witnessing the few quips he makes in Justice League was a breath of fresh air in this predominately grim and brooding cinematic universe.

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[Credit: WB] | Tenor
If this film is any indication, future DCEU additions may veer away from its typical darker tone and strive to create a balance between the bleak/dreary and light/humourous. Justice League isn’t as “ha ha!” as something like Thor: Ragnarok but it does know when to hit you with certain quips and when to just let the scene play out. As with any CBM, there are certain jokes you can spot coming a parsec away, not to mention predicting some of the regular dialogue as well.

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[Credit: WB]

If you’ve generally been a bit “meh” when it comes to watching DCEU properties (except for Wonder Woman ofc), you may be in for a pleasant surprise with Justice League 

Justice League receives 3.5/5 Matt Damon heads.

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featured image credit: WB

Tenor Has All You Need To Satisfy Your Gif Cravings

Like every other real human bean on the planet, I love me a good gif. Tenor.com has virtually any gif you desire at the simple click of a mouse or the touch of your finger on a mobile device.

I was recently contacted by them to utilize some of their killer Justice League gifs for this review and I’m now officially obsessed with perusing through its vast catalo–

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[Credit: WB] | Tenor

Alrighty then!

As I always occasionally say, why communicate with words when a trusty gif will do the job with pizzazz?! Make sure to check out Tenor for all your gif needs. 


What are your thoughts on Justice League?

Are you intrigued to see more from the DCEU or are you essentially over it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

 

Thor: A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Ragnarok (2017) (Review)

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[Credit: Marvel Studios/Disney]
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Thor: Ragnarok follows an imprisoned Thor (Chris Hemsworth) as he must battle his way through a gladiatorial competition and Jeff Goldblum’s handsomeness in order to return to an Asgard on the brink of destruction courtesy of his long, lost sister Hela (Cate Blanchett). The film also stars Tom Hiddleston, Tessa Thompson, Mark Ruffalo, Idris Elba and Karl Urban and is directed by Taika Waititi (What We Do In The Shadows, Hunt For The Wilderpeople).


Captain Obvious PSA here: If you have a beautiful, bouncing baby in your possession, for the love of all that is holy please don’t bring it into a movie theatre auditorium. 


My Thoughts On The Characters And Story

Thor: Ragnarok is easily my favourite Thor film out of the current 3, if they somehow managed to include the Queen Natalie Portman (and actually give her something to work with) it could have possibly been my favourite comic book film of the year (I’m still torn between Logan and Wonder Woman on that front). Utilizing the natural charisma Chris Hemsworth has and allowing him to demonstrate it in Ragnarok was one of the best decisions Marvel could’ve made. While Thor has been more of the stern, stoic Avenger for the past few film installments, Ragnarok’s Thor is the embodiment of charm. Hemsworth works so unbelievably well with every single person in this film, it’s such a delight to witness. You can feel the joy of every actor when they appear on screen and when they’re having fun, you’re having fun. Unfortunately, this fun became a bit tedious at times. 

You’ve heard/read time and time again that Thor: Ragnarok is… fun! It’s a fun… fun ride, it’s a whole bunch of fun times at the movies and don’t get me wrong, it is. In terms of the humour component of it, I found myself chuckling at times when the dialogue was written effectively and the delivery was brilliant, however the one type of humour that I feel a bit of disdain for is when the prolongation of a joke occurs. By this, I mean a joke that is said and then the next 15 or 20 solid seconds are spent with the characters remaining in silence, looking around at each other and/or the room they’re in- I hate this shit. There are always exceptions to every rule so of course there are one or two examples in the film world where this is executed hysterically and it’s the funniest moment of the respective movie, in Ragnarok, certain humour components went on for so long it became eye-roll inducing at times. The entire cast is thankfully blessed with some wickedly smaht charisma so it wasn’t a torturous experience, however it definitely felt like everyone was anticipating the next ha ha! moment. 

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[Credit: Marvel Studios/Disney]
Tessa Thompson was the biggest standout for me besides Hemsworth. From the moment this powerful entity drunkenly staggered onto the screen (and that GLORIOUS Valkyrie flashback, oh my word) I was infatuated. I felt the strongest emotional connection with her and the other Queen of the screen, Cate mf’ing Blanchett. After learning about her through every one of  her expository moments, I sympathized with her. Odin (Sir Anthony Hopkins) was a jerk. She may have had violent tendencies in her youth, however she contributed to the formation of Asgard because she is a dominating force on the battlefield. Hate the player, do not. Hate the game. She can terrify the God of thunder and demolished Mjolner, a notion that is unheard of from any villain in the MCU thus far. While I would’ve liked to see more of her – preferably not monologuing her background – everything she did, I loved. 

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[Credit: Marvel Studios/Disney]
Is there ever a time when Mark Ruffalo isn’t an unbelievably endearing presence on screen? Ragnarok did a terrific job in making me hyped to see more Thor in the upcoming Infinity War because I really wasn’t a big Thor fan in the past. As Phase 4 (this is four, right?) slowly concludes, hopefully we see more of Thompson in the MCU future within Phase # Whatever-Phase-Marvel-Wants-To-Shoot. 

How Were The Other Aspects Of Thor: Ragnarok?

As someone who could listen to anything synth-related for the rest of my life, I cannot commend Ragnarok enough for its absolute killer soundtrack and score. Firstly, I consider using Led Zeppelin’s “Immigrant Song” as kind of cheating because that song can make even the most mundane of activities seem remarkably epic but I digress, the utilization of this song is virtually perfect. There is also a “Pure Imagination” sequence that is… SO. GOOD.

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[Credit: Marvel Studios/Disney]
I avoided as many trailers as I could have for the film (except for that initial spectacular teaser trailer) and following my watch, granted myself the opportunity to check them all out. I’ve been listening to the following tune that was used in another trailer and it is an incredibly enjoyable experience watching these other worldly beloved characters having space battles while the pulsating synth booms in the background. 

The film’s aesthetic is gorgeous and offers a ton for the audience to feast their eyes on. The colourful garbage planet of Sakaar is run by Goldblum’s streak of glittery blue lipstick and is home to many interesting-looking characters who are probably descendants of the “Dink Dinks” from Spaceballs

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[Credit: Marvel Studios/Disney]

Thor: Ragnarok receives 3.5/5 Matt Damon heads.

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