Category Archives: Movies

My thoughts on movies

‘Rogue One’ is Fan Service on an Emotional Roller Coaster

*generic spoiler warning*

If you don’t know these words by heart you should at least know where they are from:

“It is a period of civil war. Rebel spaceships, striking from a hidden base, have won their first victory against the evil Galactic Empire.

“During the battle, Rebel spies managed to steal secret plans to the Empire’s ultimate weapon, the DEATH STAR, an armored space station with enough power to destroy an entire planet.”

 

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Review: ‘Fantastic Beasts’ is Fun and Surprising

Kind of too late for a spoiler-free review, but if you don’t want spoilers then you know what’s good for you.

It feels hard to enjoy a movie when you get there late with your friends and the only seats left are in the very front row—especially an action-fantasy blockbuster like Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. In retrospect, Fantastic Beasts was cool and I enjoyed it, but the first time watching it I kind of felt like the pacing was a little too fast. I didn’t hear the names of most of the creatures, and I couldn’t keep track of the characters, either. At least not as much as I would have liked to.

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My 10 Favorite Movies

Recently, Tim Champlin tweeted me and asked if I could do a list of my ten favorite movies. I thought it sounded like a great idea, so I jumped at the opportunity to do it. Before I get into this list, I want to set a few ground rules. First, these are my favorite movies. I don’t know how to quantify “favorite,” but I do know that it is not the same as a list of the ten best movies. Some of these movies may not be great, but they are movies I could sit and watch again and again, for the most part. Also, you can’t argue someone’s favorite movies. You just can’t. Another rule I set for myself was limiting myself to one movie per series. Otherwise, this list would be nothing but Star Trek, Star Wars, and Lord of the Rings. That would be boring. So, in no particular order, here is my list.

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‘Finding Dory’ Hits Close to the Mark

Finding Nemo has always been my favorite Pixar movie. It is one of THE defining movies of my generation. By all rights, I should be offended that they decided to make a sequel at all. And yet after seeing Finding Dory the other day, I’m actually glad that they made one. Finding Dory doesn’t really work as a stand-alone film: in fact, the exposition of Dory’s backstory ties in directly to where Dory met Marlin. I wish they hadn’t explained away so much of Dory’s spontaneity. Yet as annoying as it was for Pixar to retcon so much of Finding Nemo it segwayed nicely into Dory’s conflict as the central protagonist.

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‘Civil War’ Delivers a Balanced Story and Emotional Impact

Spoilers discussed but not really mentioned in detail.

The first time I saw Captain America: Civil War in theaters, I had my doubts about whether or not it actually was a Captain America movie.  It doesn’t feel like Cap gets a lot of depth because there is so much else going on.  The plot and exposition is really about the buildup to the two main battles at the end. However, it is still a Captain America movie because the events in this film shape the mantle of Captain America and how Steve Rogers carried it. While I and lots of other fans are disappointed because we wanted more resolution for Steve and Bucky’s stories, the ensemble of characters was still balanced, even with the show-stealing introductions of Spider-man and Black Panther.

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Batman v Superman- A Review

Batman v Superman is probably one of the most highly anticipated movies of this year. Maybe one of the most anticipated movies of the last few years. Considering the movies that have come out or that are coming out, that’s saying something. After seeing the numerous previews and teasers for the film, everyone was left with the same question: Would the movie hold up to expectations? The people wondering this ranged from people who were hoping that it would finally be the movie we have been waiting for from DC to the people who were fully planning on seeing a train wreck in the theater, and couldn’t wait. So, who was right? The answer, in my opinion, is all the people who were in the middle of the two extremes. It wasn’t earth shattering, game changing good like, say Marvel’s The Avengers, but it wasn’t the steaming pile of brown stuff that was 2010’s Green Lantern. Simply put, it was mediocre at best.

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Jake’s List of 10 Movies for 2016

2016 is here, and that means we have a whole new year’s worth of movies to look forward to. 2015 was all about The Force Awakens. What will be the big hit for 2016? So far it looks like Captain America: Civil War may be the king of the year, but it has plenty of competition. This is my list of 10 movies I am looking forward to in the upcoming year. It’s not a comprehensive list, because there are a ton of really cool movies coming out this year. My list may not be the same as yours, but these are the 10 movies I am looking forward to. They are listed in order of when they are coming out.

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Star Wars: The Best is Yet to Come

WARNING: This essay includes an open discussion of spoilers. If you haven’t seen the movie and don’t want to be spoiled, don’t read this.

I have now seen The Force Awakens twice. I am relieved to say that this isn’t rebooted, dark and gritty Star Wars. This is Star Wars at its best. It’s the same feeling I get when watching the original trilogy AND the prequels. It’s fun, it’s fast, it’s exciting. There’s humor and warmth as well as stirring emotional scenes and deep moral lessons to contemplate. The action sequences are high-flying and thrilling. It flows with the rest of the saga like a river…but that’s still partly pending resolution of how we got from the happily-ever-after in Return of the Jedi to something-is-very-wrong-and-needs-to-be-set-right on Jakku.

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Fun Halloween Films: Ghostbusters

I love Halloween time. It is one of my favorite times of year. Maybe it’s because it is in the Fall, or maybe it’s because of all the candy. The point is, I really enjoy it. Having kids, I have enjoyed it even more. It is a lot of fun planning costumes with them and seeing how excited they get to dress up and go trick or treating. Another thing I like about Halloween is watching the occasional “Halloween Film.” Like Christmas, there seems to be films that I watch only at this time of year. The only problem is, I can’t stand horror films. There are probably lots of reasons why I don’t like them, but maybe the most simple is that I just never got into them. They’re just not my jam (that’s right, I’m hip, so I can say things like “my jam”). So what movies do I like to curl up on the couch with that special someone and that special bowl of popcorn and watch during this time of year? This week, we will be giving you a list that you can turn into your very own Fun Halloween Movie Marathon.

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Will Superhero Movies Go The Way of Westerns.

desktop-1441735070Steven Spielberg told the associated press  “There will be a time when the superhero movie goes the way of the Western,” That is quite the statement in the current climate of big budget movies filling seats and filling the coffers of the movie Execs. First gut reaction was “What he must be crazy.” I do how ever want to take a more in depth look at the statement.

First of all I live in the town of Kanab also know as Little Hollywood. Why is it called that you ask? Well a good portion of western movies and TV shows were filmed here and their sets still can be seen today. So westerns are a big part of this towns culture and also a lot of the residence still are Cowboys and Gals. The town enjoys the history of the boom of Western movies and we celebrate it every year with the western legends round up.

Westerns did diminish in production that is a fact. Hollywood decided to move on and focus on other genres. They did not how ever stop releasing good western movies here is a list of movies over the past few years and these are just of the top of my head.

  1. Cowboys and Aliens
  2. Django
  3. True Grit
  4. Appaloosa
  5. Priest
  6. 3-10 to Yuma

So is the the genre dead. No It has never been dead. People still want to be that cowboy or out law fighting to survive.

I now come to Superhero movies. We have seen an explosion of good, no great movies that have enthralled the audiences with a chance to step in the shoes of their favorite hero of their childhood. Children are gaining a new respect for these characters too.

Both DC & Marvel have slated movies clear into 2020. Are they going to fill the seats up til then and into the future. I truly think they will because these types of movies are not new to us. Superman debuted in film and TV in the 1950s close to 65 years ago he alone has gone through many an TV show and Movie with huge followings. Many still believe Christopher Reeves is the Best Superman and not too mention the Smallville cult following is immense. I could go through many other comic book heroes and point out all there TV appearance and Movies they have been in but that could take me some time.

Will these movies slow down in popularity. Well more than likely nothing can sustain the growth it is currently enjoying. But will the disappear or become unpopular I say no. People always want to get away from their lives even if it is for two fantastical hours with their hero. Also look at the content available for Hollywood producer to draw on. content that already has a following a base to start from. Hollywood execs know that if they place the right project in the right hands they will be able to fill seats.

Not to say that all Superhero movies are made equal. We currently have had the opportunity to see two franchises that point out that it is all about who is at the helm on whether we receive a movie worth watching.

Guardians of the Galaxy stands out as a story line that had little following and was very obscure content that know one knew. I recall taking to a good friend of mine saying Marvel has done it wrong now. Oh how I was wrong. I went to go and see the movie and I was blown away by how I was drawn into the characters who I knew little about and enjoyed every minute of it.

Then there is Fantastic Four. This franchise was well known and people were excited for the reboot to see if it can live up to their expectation. Unfortunately it fell flat. Disjointed and a confusing plot showed that just putting on the title a famous franchise will not make it money.

So back to Spielberg’s statement to the press “Will they go the way of the western.”  No I do not think so. I think the momentum will slow down but myself and so many others are excited to see where the genre takes us.