Transformers: Redeeming the Franchise

July 5, 2011 at 10:29 am (movies, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , )

Transformers: Dark of the Moon, the third installment in the Transformers trilogy is much better than the second movie. In fact they glance over so much of Revenge of the Fallen that it’s like the movie never happened. Seeing as how Fallen was not a good movie, it might be best to forget its existence. Megan Fox is mentioned maybe twice in the new movie and her absence explained as a break up. The racistly stereotypical ghetto twins are passed over as if to erase them from the franchise. Beyond the holes in the thru line this movie actually followed a story and the fight scenes were kept to a tolerable length that don’t cause seizures and confusion like the second film.

The movie was good, not as good as the first, but a strong film for the genre. A few elements were added that I was not expecting. Civilians are actually shown being killed, and the transformers have a lot more fluids spewing from them like spit, and blood – or is that transmission fluid? Once again many of the characters that have been in the other movies have few, if any, speaking lines. Ratchet and Sideswipe barely speak and Barricade is only seen during a panning shot of one of the fight scenes.

I didn’t see the movie in 3D, but the 2D version was worth a look. I hear that the 3D was done well and not an afterthought like it has been in so many movies lately. If you are a Transformers fan or like action movies that have a plot go see this one. If you have yet to see the second one, don’t bother. Let that one sit in purgatory to think about how bad it was.

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Inglourious Basterds – “Killin’ Naazis” at the Box Office

August 22, 2009 at 2:28 am (movies) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Inglourious Basterds has to be one of Quentin Tarantino’s best films. Contrary to Tarantino’s trademark style this movie runs chronologically, allowing for less concentration on the part of the viewer. Overall it seems that he has matured in his film making and brought together a beautiful piece of cinema. Not to say I haven’t enjoyed most of his films, Kill Bill aside, but this one was much stronger and did not need the time travel that was necessary in his past films to show every conceivable perspective through each character’s eyes.

The true star of the movie was not the well-known cast members like Brad Pitt, Mike Myers – who has a guest appearance, or BJ Novak – of The Office fame, but rather Colonel Hans Landa played by Christoph Waltz. Waltz, who currently lives in London and is fluent in German, English and French, displayed a fantastic performance. In many scenes he had a John Malkovich like delivery, but his range throughout the movie is very impressive.

Over the course of the movie Tarantino’s twisted sense of humor is shown quite often in the fashion we have come to expect from his work on films like Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction. He also pays homage to past movies like his insertion of a brief clip from Alfred Hitchcock’s 1936 movie Sabotage, among other works.

The movie was well written, shot, edited, and the cast was perfectly chosen. I believe it is the strongest film Tarantino has put out to date – don’t just take my word for it, German film critics are even praising it. If you have the chance to see it, do.

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Transformers – Mediocre Movie in Disguise

June 29, 2009 at 10:11 am (movies) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Transformers Poster

Transformers Revenge of the Fallen is a pretty movie. It has all the special effects and MTV-esque edited fight scenes you have come to expect. Storyline – not so much.

I enjoyed the first movie, the plot was there, the action was well done, etc. This installment had some enjoyable humor, and some aesthetically pleasing scenes. The fight scenes were cut so fast that half the time I didn’t know who was who. Some of the transformers (Autobots & Decepticons) from the first movie – Ratchet, Ironhide, etc – had barely enough lines between them to qualify for a SAG card. The movie is long and seems to be a victim of the new trend in Hollywood that they spent too much money in post-production to edit out scenes that add nothing to the movie.

Overall it was decent, I had no emotional connection to any of the characters, and feel like they combined Black Hawk Down and Transformers a little too much in this one. The first one was much better.

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