Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Now Playing: Edge of Tomorrow

Why is it that Tom Cruise gets so many good goddamn movies?  His agent must be phenomenal.  But, I won't repeat myself, as I've talked about this before.

Enter: Edge of Tomorrow.

A film that uses many video game images (Jim Raynor's skull helmet in Starcraft, Cloud Strife's sword in Final Fantasy VII, Metal Gear's exoskeletal suits....) and then does what most video games shy away from: put them on a woman.  There are notable exceptions (Metroid and Mass Effect among them), but rare.  The real hero in this story is the Rita Vrataski, the Angel of Verdun or the Full Metal Bitch, depending on who you ask.  Ably played by Emily Blunt, Rita is simply amazing.  She's tough, smart, quick, and brave.  She drags Cruise's Bill Cage along with her, chagrined that his cowardice rewards him with the gift of time travel.  She makes hard decisions, sacrifices herself over and over (and over!) again.  She is, simply put, awesome.  The kind of poster-hero that every little girl or boy can look up to.

Aside from the one lingering question, at the very end, which Jadek and I worked through on our quick walk home, the plot and pacing is solid.  A nice rental, if you don't want to waste warm spring afternoons inside a chilly theatre.  4 out of 5 stars.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Now Playing: Maleficent

I've been waiting for Maleficent for what seems like ages!  I mean, it combines so many things I love: Angelina Jolie, a "true evil" villain in the titular character, reverse storytelling, special effects, fantasy, an amazing title song...sigh. So, I had high hopes.

The only real disappointing part was just how short the movie was! Clocking in at only 97 minutes, I felt there was so much more we could have explored ...alas.

What there was of it, was beautiful.  It made the little girl inside me very happy indeed.  4 out of 5 stars.

And for your aural pleasure, Lana Del Ray's Once Upon a Dream, below.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Now Playing: X-Men: Days of Future Past

100-word review!

I liked X-Men Days of Future Past a lot; it did a pretty good job retconning all the previous movies.  Left some good questions to chew on too – like, how did Professor X recover after his adventures in X3? And what happens to all those timelines after the last scene? I really enjoy the star-studded cast, the insane amount of cameos, the subtle nods for long-time fans… really, any movie with a lineup that includes McAvoy, McKellan, Stewart, Fassbender, Lawrence, Jackman, Berry, Paquin, Dinklage, Ashmore, Page... pretty much unstoppable.  It was great; you will have to see the other five movies to really get everything out of it though.  4 out of 5 stars.