Film Review #2 “Man of Steel”

Starring: Henry Cavill, Amy Adams and Michael Shannon
Directed by: Zack Snyder
Rated: PG 13
Running time: 2 hrs 23 mins
Warner Brothers

Our Score: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Warner Brothers has brought Superman back with the “Man of Steel” and it is better than ever. This movie will definitely revitalize the franchise. They obviously think so being that they already have “Man of Steel 2” in the works.

The movie starts out on Krypton with the birth of Kal-El. His father Jor-El (Russell Crowe) warns the planets elders of the destruction of their world which General Zod (Michael Shannon) interferes with. They did a great job showing more of life on Krypton and its technology. General Zod tried to convince Jor-El to join him but of course Jor-El refuses which leads to a good confrontation and build up.

Kal-El is sent to Earth to survive and give hope to the human race. We are now seeing a mature Kal-El aka Clark Kent living on earth trying to just blend in. Of course he gets pulled into doing some heroics which eventually leads him to look back on his life and the meaning of his existence. The way the mix the story of the young Clark Kent to the man he is in the film is very well done that it did not matter that we knew what was going to happen. Kevin Costner did an excellent job as Jonathan Kent even he didn’t have much screen time. It was just enough and not too much but did lay the ground work for Clark’s upbringing.

Lois Lane (Amy Adams) gets word of a mysterious person who saved people and follows the trail that will eventually lead to the Man Of Steel. I feel that their relationship was quick and didn’t build on it much and could have used more time. Now let’s get to Michael Shannon as General Zod. He did an amazing job and was very scary. You can reason with and see why he is so angry. After all he just wants to preserve the Kryptonian way of life.

Last but not least let’s talk about Henry Cavill as the Man of Steel. He has a very good strong presence about him and showed some good emotion as a being from another planet just trying to blend in with the world. Throughout the movie he is called Clark Kent or Kal-El. They did not call him Superman except for once in the movie.

The fights scenes were great and definitely worthy of the Man of Steel. They were fast, strong, and powerful. The special effects were great and smooth. I was able to see it in 3D and felt that it didn’t add anything to the movie but it didn’t take away from it either. At the end of the movie after the final confrontation my mouth just dropped and didn’t believe what I saw. This is a must see and I do not believe that the Superman fans will be disappointed.

Film Review “Lockout”

Directed by: James Mather, Stephen St. Leger
Starring: Guy Pearce, Maggie Grace, Vincent Regan, Joseph Gilgun, Lennie James, Peter Stormare
Distributed by: Open Road Films / FilmDistrict
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Running time: 95 minutes

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

I went into this thinking it would be just another prison rescue movie. Well the movie definitely proved me wrong. Not only was there action from start to finish it was also very funny and kept your attention throughout.

The year is 2079 and Snow (Guy Pearce) is being framed for murder. He finds himself in a no-win situation but with a possibility to clear his name. Pearce does an excellent job and has a lot of one liners that are very humorous. Emilie Warnock (Maggie Grace) plays the president’s daughter. When the two finally meet their personalities clash and find themselves in situations they would rather not be in. Hydell (Joseph Gilgun) plays a very psychotic trigger happy inmate. I do hope to see him in more movies.

The special effects were pretty good for the most part. At the start of the film when Snow is fleeing a crime scene there is a chase. This scene doesn’t look that well and almost feels as if you were watching a video game. Through the rest of the movie the effects weren’t as bad and done quite well.

As I stated before, this is not your typical prison break movie. The movie is filled with action and humor throughout. I definitely left the theater enjoying the movie more than I thought I would have. If you like action/thrillers this movie does not disappoint.


Related Content

XBOX Console & Game Review: Star Wars R2-D2 Console & Kinect Star Wars

Platform: Xbox 360
Release Date: April 3, 2012
Distributed by: LucasArts
Price: $449.00

Star Wars R2-D2 Console: 4 out of 5 stars
Kinect Star Wars: 3 out of 5 stars

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…. OK enough of that. The Star Wars Limited Edition Xbox 360 is really well done. When I finally got it and started to open it the nerd in me was very excited. Being a long time Star Wars fan and that my other 360 was broken there was no doubt in me getting this.

It comes with the Xbox 360 Console which is custom themed to R2-D2. The Kinect Sensor is the first white one of its kind on the 360. The wireless controller is gold and themed to C-3PO. The controller is detailed very nicely. A 320GB hard drive is the largest available on the 360. It also comes with two games Kinect Star Wars and Kinect Adventures.

Hooking everything up was pretty easy. Upon turning the 360 on for the first time the console made its first R2-D2 sound. The console will make R2 sounds when you turn it on and off from the console or open and close the tray from the console. If you use the controller to power on/off the console it will not make the R2 sounds.

Now on to the Kinect Star Wars game. It starts off with C-3PO and R2-D2 and recently recovered Jedi Archives. Listening to the two droids go back and forth with each other like they do in the movies gives a good feeling of being immersed into the Star Wars Universe. You have several different modes you can select from.

Campaign Story: The bulk of the content in the game. You are a padawan learner and you go through the Clone Wars. The voices at times do not match with the animation. The voice acting is not the greatest but it is not bad either. When it comes to the lightsaber battles it is almost like a turn based RPG. At first your enemy will attack you and you have to block then once you build enough stamina you go into a lock where your weapons clash together and you have to break the lock by doing one several different options like Force Push, Kick, or Head butt you opponent. After successfully doing so, you can now attack your enemy. This gets repeated until one of wyou go down. Now I must say that the Kinect did capture the movements pretty decently. Also the nerd in me I used my Master Replicas Lightsaber hilt to give it more of a Jedi feeling for me. This did not affect the Kinect at all regarding being able to read my movements. Depending on what hand you use for your Lightsaber the other is used for your force moves. You can force push or grab and toss your enemies around. Not all enemies can be affected by the force. One thing that does ruin the experience is the use of cut scenes. While playing you are constantly put into a cut scene where you have no control over your char. It does this pretty often and does get annoying.

Pod Racing: This is done really well and one of the better mini games available. The controls work great and you have to hold your arms up as if you were in the podracer itself. When you pull your arms back your racer slows down and applies the break. Thrust your arms forward gives you a burst of speed. Turning can be a little bit tricky but once you are used to it you should not have any problems. The story is geared more towards a younger audience but is fun none the less.

Rancor Rampage: You are the rancor and everyone else is your meal. Nom Nom! This mode is very entertaining and a lot of fun. You are a rancor on the loose and you can pretty much destroy anything in your path. You can also eat the poor people that are running around. What is also fun is you can pick up people and throw them, you do get added bonus the farther you can toss them.

Duels of the Fate: This mode takes you through a series of Lightsaber duels. This is pretty slow and not as exciting as one would hope.

Galactic Dance Off: Who of us would not want to dance with Slave Leia!! Well after this you will not be 100% fulfilled. Even though the story line may not make sense it was indeed fun if you can get past that. I mean I can’t see as Leia having fun and smiling while Jaba’s captive. Yes in the game it does seem like she is having a good time, but as I said if you can get past that part the play is fun.

Film Review #2 “Rise of the Planet of the Apes”

Starring: James Franco, Frieda Pinto and Andy Serkis
Directed by: Rupert Wyatt
Rated: PG 13
Running time: 1 hour 45 minutes
20th Century Fox

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

When I first heard about this movie I was thinking why!  Then I thought about it and wondered what could have happened to cause the Apes in today’s times to take over and mankind to be slaves.  Well this movie does just that and does it very well, that it is very believable.

The film begins with of course the capturing of chimpanzee’s to bring back to the lab for experiments.  Dr. Will Rodman (James Franco) is on the verge of finding a cure for Alzheimer’s and other ailments that attack the brain.  Not only would this cure it but make you smarter.  But with no side effects?  Of course things go wrong and that leads to the developing story line to the rise of the apes.

The special effects are absolutely amazing.  Watching Caesar grow and evolve in the movie is definitely worth it.  You can see him thinking and feeling very clearly, which you can also tell that he will eventually be up to no good….you would too if you went through what he did. The facial expressions of Caesar are very lifelike. This is due to the amazing work of WETA and performance capture from Andy Serkis. Also watching Caesar rally the troops and climb to the top is well done.  I do not want to say too much otherwise it would ruin the movie for you.  You will just have to go and see it.

The movie does start off slow but that is made up for the great storyline and character development.  There is not a lot of action but don’t let that stop you from seeing this movie.  I feel that this movie was very well done and the story line was great despite the lack of action.  Also when the movie is over don’t just get up and leave!