Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category

Spider-Man 3

Luckily when I checked the local cinema yesterday there were still four good seats left for Spider-Man 3 at a reasonable time today, so I snapped up two of them for Will and I. It proved to be a good move – I’d never seen such a packed cinema! Not even the dreaded front row had a seat to spare.

Spider-Man 3 was larger, faster, and unfortunately a tad less impressive than its predecessors. Don’t get me wrong though, I wasn’t bored for a second of it. Okay, I lied, I was bored for about 2 minutes and that was Kirsten Dunst’s fault. Man she’s irritating. The rest was good.

Warning: Spoilers ahead!

So now we have one hero who goes a bit bad but returns to good, two bad guys (one of whom isn’t all that bad), and one good guy turned bad turned good again. It went a little overboard, but the story was at worse crowded and definitely not confusing. Bringing in Gwen Stacy was a nice touch, bubbly and fun she was a welcome change of pace to a soggy Mary Jane.

Spidey becoming evil was interesting. The scene that expressed this wonderfully was his second fight with Harry/New Goblin. It was emotionally charged, something I reckon made the first two movies so good and was what was missing when it came to Spidey vs. Venom and Sandman. But what was with the dancing? It was amusing, yes, but also irrelevant and mildly disturbing.

As far as the graphics went, they were absolutely brilliant. The scene where Sandman first rises as a monster was beautiful, how he’d try, then fall apart, then try again. I loved how they did Venom – he looked awesome in full giganto mouth mode. (Unfortunately that view was rare and they showed him mostly with Eddie Brock’s face sticking out.) Oh, and better not forget the scene where Spidey tears off the black suit and the goo slithers down and covers Brock. Gorgeous.

And yay for “‘Nuff said”. 

Becca’s rating:
    

Will the man’s rating:

300

Warning! Spoilers after the jump.

When we first saw the trailer for 300 at the end of my Happy Feet DVD, Will and I turned to each other and agreed, “Well… That looked trashy. Probably not worth watching on the big screen.”

Last night however we ran out of things to keep us entertained and ended up going to see it. I’m glad we did, and now I have to say that if you are going to watch it, watch it on a very, very big screen.

The visuals and action sequences (I counted two, each of which lasted for approximately 45% of the movie) were stunning. It was extremely gory, but things were so heavily stylised that it didn’t feel gory.

As for the storyline, there is none. They feed you little morsels every now and then about how life is back in Sparta, but you know they’re not really trying. Those scenes mainly provide a chance for your eyes to rest, refocus, and prepare for round 2. (Save of course for when the ever-feisty Queen Gorgo skewered Theron, quite rightfully so too. Revenge is nothing if not entertaining.)

I was mildly disappointed that the best fight scenes were the first ones and they didn’t give us a grand over-the-top finale. I like finales. They could’ve also done a bit more with the Persian army overviews. Remember 10000 Uruk-hai at Helm’s Deep? Just imagine what they could’ve done with hundreds of thousands of Persian soldiers.

Now I know there’s been a bit of a political stir over 300. I see it as just a movie, loosely based on historical fact with the term ‘loosely’ used very, very loosely. It’s not meant to feel real, or be anything that was real. To be fair though, if those were ancient Chinese depicted as a disfigured, RuPaul-worshipping mob, I’d be slightly pissed off too.

It was worth the price of a movie ticket – a great movie it is not, but it is something new, unique and visually fantastic. And, pants are optional.

Becca’s rating:
    

Will the man’s rating:

X-Men: The Last Stand

Rating: 3/5

Warning: Spoilers after the jump. Beware the jump link!

Got around to seeing X3 yesterday. Thankfully we booked in advance, the place was packed! Being a huge X-Men fan I went in thinking I wouldn’t be able to fairly judge the movie, but here it goes anyway.

Honestly, I really don’t think it lived up to the first two installments. It was fast, explosive, and noisy, which is pretty much what I go to cinemas for but it was too much. It skipped from sub-plot to sub-plot so quickly you didn’t have time to sink your teeth into any of them. On the plus side though the graphics were great, it was a huge adrenaline booster, and Ian McKellen was in it.

Now, I really need to get something out.

They killed Professor X! You bastards!

I feel better now. Moving on…

Phoenix is played by the hot, sexy piece of wood that is Famke Janssen. Wake up woman! You’re meant to be unstable, not comatose. Thankfully Hugh Jackman, always wonderful as Wolverine, was there to save the movie’s climax. Ian McKellen was again show-stopping as Magneto, with the movie’s most impressive scene being where he tears apart and levitates the Golden Gate Bridge.

There was a lot stuffed and jammed into a short space of time. Seeing the most charming Beast was terrific, as was seeing Bobby really become Ice Man. Unfortunately so many characters and sub-plots were left undeveloped. Leech (where did he come from and where did he go?), Rogue taking the cure, the Worthington Family, Juggernaut (exactly who decided to cast him as unwelcome comedy relief?), the list goes on and on.

And why, with all their powers, did Arclight, Quill, and Psylocke feel that the best way to dispose of Warren Jr (creator of the cure) was to throw him off a building? (Of course Angel couldn’t save him if they didn’t, but it was still annoying.)

Turtle rating stars by Schildieproductions.

Star Trek to Return

‘Star Trek’ to Return with ‘Mission Impossible: 3′ Director at Helm: Hurrah! According to some sites it’ll focus on Kirk and Spock’s first mission. The next series though (whenever that happens) should so go further into the future. I’d love to see something reminiscent of Asimov’s Foundation novel, with the Federation seemingly at it’s peak but clearly in decay to those who are astute enough to see it. Unlike the Empire though, the Federation will not fall but be restored. (Note: I haven’t read Asimov’s Empire series, so I don’t know anything about it from that time.)

War of the Worlds (Spoilers Ahead)

Just finished watching War of the Worlds. Honestly, I don’t know what the fuss was all about. The first descriptive word that came out of my mouth when I left the cinema was ‘mediocre’ (for Spielberg’s standards), and that was to avoid insulting my boyfriend in case he enjoyed it.

Before I get to any real spoilers though, the funniest part of the two hours had to be the guy sitting behind me. Near the beginning of the movie, this question was asked: “What’s the capital of Australia?” Whoever was behind me promptly announced in a know-it-all voice, “I know. Sydney!” Pffft.

Back to the film though. It started off brilliantly, I loved the lightning strikes and the tripod’s emergence from underground. Thankfully the son’s ‘I hate you dad’ scenes were limited.

Halfway through though things started to go A.I. The basement cat-and-mouse game seemed to last hours, turning what could have been a welcome break from all the destruction into something dreadfully dull.

The ending was rushed and crude. Could they not have hinted that the aliens were dying before the last ten minutes of the movie? And of course the military needed Tom Cruise the action hero to point out that the shields were down, apparently they don’t have brains of their own.

I did like the part though when the family gets kicked out of the car by the mob, that was a bit more realistic and emotional. Not much else in the movie made me care about them enough to root for them to survive.

Maybe I’ll go buy the book, I’m sure I’ll find it more impressive.

Batman Begins (Spoiler Free)

Well I just finished watching Batman Begins, and it must have been the first time in years that I didn’t exit the cinema criticising someone’s acting abilities. In short, I thought it was a terrific movie. The villains were menacing, the city haunting, and the hero believably human.

It tells the story of how Bruce Wayne evolved to be more than just a man. The brilliant cast somehow pulls off making a man who runs around dressed like a bat seem plausible. Gotham City was beautiful, in that rotting, crime-infested sort of way.

I gotta get me one of those cars.

Flying Wookies!

One long and torturous week after opening, I finally got to see Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.

I’m sure everyone’s already up to their ears in reviews, so to keep things brief I thought it was fabulous, but was expecting a little bit more. The action was incredible, but it wasn’t enough to take the ‘best movie’ title from Episode V. Random commentary and possibly (look at me, I’m a warning!) spoilers ahead.

R2-D2 has been my favourite character since I was a kid. Hurray for the spunky little droid and all the scenes they gave him! I was happy to finally learn whether he does or does not get his memory wiped. R2 knows…

Badass Windu is just the coolest Jedi ever. It was incredible to see him channelling/reflecting Sidious’s Force lightning. But couldn’t Kit Fisto have been given a more noble death? I know he wasn’t a central character, but still!

I love Wookies! Yoda riding a Wookie, now that’s too adorable.

All the battles and fights were terrific. Well orchestrated with incredible graphics. Don’t you want a giant lizard now? I want a giant lizard now.

There’s been a lot of disappointed over Hayden Christensen’s portrayal of Anakin, and some of his deliveries were unintentionally hilarious. But really, how many young actors can you think of who wouldn’t sound ridiculous spewing out how “together we can rule this galaxy!”

I’ve seen a lot of rave reviews and a few that thought it was absolutely horrible, to me it was somewhere in between. 7/10 would do. I left the cinema thinking it was mind-blowing, but a few hours later I feel like putting on some Star Trek instead.

On a different note, I tried playing the demo of Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy. Hah, I officially proclaim myself to be hopeless at fighting games! I um… blew up Chewbacca.

A Bit Biased Are We?

Every Wednesday at 9:30pm boob tubes all around Hong Kong are graced with nature documentaries. Being the animal fanatic that I am, I allow myself to become completely absorbed in them.

For the past three weeks they’ve been playing a ‘Wildlife Greats’ series where they count down the top ten animals in a certain category. And for every episode the top animal has been a big cat, beating out everything from living fossils to anacondas to lemurs.

The idea of a biased nature show just makes me laugh.

Ocean’s Twelve

Since Tuesday is cheap movie ticket day here in Hong Kong, I went to see Ocean’s Twelve yesterday afternoon.

Compared to the first movie, the two hour ride was a little bit bumpier, a little bit kookier, and I can’t say that I really knew where I was the whole time. While I did get in quite a few laughs, I missed the glamour and finesse of Ocean’s Eleven. As expected, there were plenty of twists and turns in the plot but none as brilliant as that of its predecessor.

The all-stars however were still as cool and charming as ever. I would’ve liked a little less Catherine Zeta Jones and more of the charismatic man-crew (especially Bernie Mac), but hey, what can you do. If only they hadn’t felt the need to superglue tabs onto everyone throughout the entire movie – catching up with everyone at the beginning was good; zooming in on people’s faces eleven times halfway through just made me dizzy.

All in all though it was a terrific way to spend an afternoon and the jokes were still being brought up and replayed well into the night. I must however end with a word of warning – if you haven’t seen the first movie, definitely do so before watching this one. It jumps right into things without flashbacks, so if the Bellagio heist doesn’t ring a bell you’ll find yourself rather confused.

BJ: The Edge of Reason

Went to see Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason after dinner last night. I thoroughly enjoyed all 110 minutes of it, although Willie, the significant other, seemed a bit less delighted when leaving the cinema.

I enjoyed quite a few good laughs and I’ll admit that I teared up during a couple of scenes. As in the first movie, the fight between D’arcy (Colin Firth) and Cleaver (Hugh Grant) proved to be rather entertaining. Unlike the first one though, in this one they get wet. Oh Colin Firth does look good wet.

The most annoying part of the movie for me was how fast it moved through so many different scenes, followed by how many awkward moments they managed to cram into the first half. Funny as they were, put together it’s just overkill. All in all though, I came away smiling and feeling perky, giggly, and girly.

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