Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Now Playing: Godzilla

Sixty years ago, Ishiro Honda’s iconic classic Godzilla (or, more accurately, Gojira) came out.  The King of Monsters has reappeared dozens of times since, sometimes serious, sometime silly, every time entertaining.

Flash forward to 2014, and Godzilla is back on screen.  Having watched the one remade in the 1998, (which was a straight-up monster movie with heroic humans), I was pleasantly surprised by the movie’s more serious turn as well as its indictment of WMDs, human hubris, and the general attitude of “shoot-first, investigate-later”.  I didn’t expect science (science!) to be a factor and I certainly didn’t expect a coherent storyline, but both were present and accounted for. Not to mention a cast of very capable actors, with Bryan Cranston, Ken Watanabe, and Juliette Binoche adding their usual panache.

I won’t go into too many details, because spoilers would actually ruin the movie.  Suffice it to say that if you’re Sci-Fi geek, you’ll love it.  3.5 out of 5 stars.  (And while the trailer is good, it was the teaser that got me going)

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Now Playing: The Amazing Spiderman 2

We went to see The Amazing Spiderman 2 a couple of weeks ago.  I do love Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone – they have great chemistry.  The movie, overall, was okay, but I felt it was a little slow.  I expect that from origin stories, but sequels should slip along at a fairly rapid pace.    It suffers from too many villains (see Batman Forever) and not enough time to give them the screen time needed to, well, care.  Castling was pretty much spot-on, but we saw entirely too little of everyone to really see the benefits of it.  And that Twilight-esque passage of time bit?  Schmaltz!

I guess Captain America is still too fresh on the brain.  I’m giving this a 3 out of 5 stars, based on special effects, cinematography, and casting alone.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Now Playing: Transcendence

I watched Transcendence over three weeks ago – sorry for being so late.  It was okay, but nothing mind-blowing.  I found HAL so much creepier.

It did spark a debate on whether one would choose to “live” eternally as a computer on a massive hard drive somewhere, if one could.  Also, as an extension of that question, what make a human, "human"? If you cut off my arms and legs, I’m still human.  What if you cut off my stomach too?  What if I’m just a brain/stem combo – still human? Robocop kinda talked about this – but he had a few meat organs left.  What if I all I have are the unique chemical composition of my brain and the electrical synaptic responses therein?

Dark thoughts for a Spring day.

Oh!  2.5 out of 5 stars.