Tag Archive: Movies


Directed By: Joe Chappelle
Starring: Ben Affleck, Peter O’Toole, Rose McGowan, Liev Schreiber

What It’s All About:

Lisa and her sister Jenny are heading to the resort town of Snowfield, Colorado to hit the slopes. They arrive to discover that the town is empty, aside from the dead bodies of their landlady and a local police officer. They join Sheriff Bryce Hammond and his deputies in investigating the town when they uncover the ancient enemy.

The Final Verdict:

Book to movie adaptions are seldom impressive, and Phantoms is no exception to this truth. With obvious ties to other classic horror films as “The Blob” or “The Thing” Joe Chappelle has conjured up a convoluted story that ends up a mess. Sloppy production, lacklustre performance and lacking story. All I can say is “Affleck, you da bomb in Phantoms, yo!”

2/5

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Directed By: Martin Campbell
Starring: Mel Gibson, Ray Winstone, Danny Hutson

What It’s All About:
Edge of Darkness follows the story of Thomas Craven (Gibson), a cop who’s daughter is killed in a drive by shooting which is assumed to be an attempt on his own life. After investigating his daughter’s personal life, Thomas quickly learns that not is all what it seems as he gets closer and closer to unravelling a much darker and sinister motive for his daughters death.

The Verdict
While it’s great to see Gibson back in front of the camera rather than behind it, Edge of Darkness fails to capture the imagination of the audience. Drab dialogue, sporadic action sequences and numerous plot twists that are highly predictable make this film one to miss. You sit there waiting for something to happen yet nothing ever really does, and it ends on a note that will leave a sour taste in your mouth. The movie going public deserve so much more.

1.5/5

Directed By: James Cameron
Starring: Sam Worthington, Zoë Saldaña, Stephen Lang, Michelle Rodriguez, Sigourney Weaver

What It’s About:
Avatar tells the story of Jake Sully (Worthington, a paralyzed marine who’s twin brother was part of the Avatar project on the jungle planet of Pandora. Due to the expensive nature of the Avatar, a host body that looks like one of Pandora’s natural inhabbitants, the Na’vi, Sully is put in as a replacement for his dead brother as his DNA is a match. Humans are planning to mine the planet for a rare form of mineral, and once Jake becomes part of the Na’vi tribe and falls in love, he stands up to save the Na’vi from the attacking military forces.

The Verdict:
It’s been a long time since we’ve seen a Cameron epic, even longer since his last foray into the Sci-Fi genre, and Avatar steps up to the plate in a big way. Featuring new technology built from the ground up, the 3D animation of this movie needs to be seen to be believed. Leaving the cinema for the first time left me with such a feeling of joy that I haven’t felt since I first saw Star Wars when I was a child. Unfortunately the advances in technology won’t be as appreciated now as they were then. Each member of the cast puts in a stellar performance, the only aspect that lets this movie down is it’s rather generic storyline. Generic and predictable doesn’t always mean bad, James Cameron has always been a great story teller, and that’s what Avatar is; a great story told in a masterful way. See this movie in 3D and be amazed.

9.2/10

transformers_revenge_fallen_2 Michael Bay brought us one of the biggest movies, both at the box office and pure scale with Transformers back in 2007. It was a true showcase of modern day CGI, not overdone featuring a fun and action packed adventure. Two years later we see the release of the sequel, Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen but can Bay make another compelling movie with the Autobots and Decepticons?

I found Revenge of the Fallen to be a mixed bag. Some parts of the film were a vast improvement and really fleshed out the characters, especially Sam’s parents who really provided some of the best humor of the movie. New character Leo really stood out on screen, and even managed to steal some of the limelight from LaBeouf.

On the other hand one thing that really let the film down in my opinion was just how over the top it really was. I know many of you are sitting there thinking “how can Transformers be anything BUT over the top?” but during the first film, I never once thought to myself “wow, the Transformers look fake”. This time round there is simply TOO many transformers, hell EVERYTHING becomes a transformer in this film. Instead of having a compelling story with meticulously choreographed action scenes, this is just a blur of close up metal shots and a bunch of yelling. A lot of the time you will find yourself not even knowing who is who, and ultimately it lets the movie down.

The story is ok, Sam discovers that a sliver of the All-Spark has been residing in one of his jumpers, and upon touching it he gains the knowledge that the cube contained. The Decepticon leader plans a full scale assault on Earth and resurrects Megatron to find Sam and gain his knowledge, which will lead them to a device buried on Earth thousands of years ago. This device was built to harvest our sun, so the Decepticons can have the lifeforce to keep their race alive.

It’s a strong enough story to keep it going, with a cast that provides a lot of comedy, and manages to keep you on the edge of your seat for a portion of the movie.

The movie has a long run time, 147 minutes. I’m all for long running movies, but I constantly found myself wondering WHEN this film was going to end. It just never wound up and ran way too long.

Overall if you are a fan of the first movie you will enjoy this, but ultimately it’s just missing some of that energy that made the first movie so great.

6/10

Ram Jam For The Count

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After hearing the buzz surrounding Mickey Rourke’s latest movie The Wrestler I was dubious. Often indie flicks will get rave reviews, and more often than not I will walk out of the cinema, or leave my couch stumped as to why. No it’s not because I don’t understand movies, I love my movies and I love the really weird and out there ones, but often a buzz ends up killing a movie for me. The Wrestler was an exception to this rule.

Rourke brings a surreal aura to the screen as he fills the role of Randy “The Ram” Robinson, a veteran wrestler from the 80’s clinging onto his former glory and still battling it out in the independant wrestling arena.

The movie is gritty and isn’t afraid to show the “acting” portion of “Sports Entertainment” but manages to show that there is still a huge physical demand of Wrestlers, that injuries are common, and even goes as far as to show how some of the “tricks” are done.

The movie take a no frills approach, nothing is over dramatized which makes this film feel very, very real. Rourke’s amazing performance is backed up by equally amazing performances from Marisa Tomei as stripper slash mum Cassidy, and Evan Rachel Wood as Stephanie, Randy’s estranged daughter.

If you get a chance to see this limited release movie in the cinema make sure you do, it’s easily one of the best movies I’ve come across in the last 12 months. Don’t let the buzz keep you away like I did, The Wrestler is well worth going through a No Holds Barred Cage Match to catch a glimpse at a world, often hidden behind smoke and mirrors

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While not a new movie, I thought it was time to check out Grindhouse, a two movie production with Rodriguez and Tarantino that was released last year. Rodriguez released Planet Terror while Tarantino released Death Proof.

I’ll say it now, I’m a self confessed Tarantino fan, I own every movie he’s ever released, and I was quite excited to see him redeem himself after the Kill Bill series (I personally did not think much of them). Well now I believe that if Tarantino wrapped up a steaming turd in tin foil he could sell them as earrings and still have critics and fans saying how fantastic they were, and that’s the feeling I get with Death Proof.

Annoying characters plague the movie, drab dialogue that doesn’t have any memorable moments like his earlier work like Jackie Brown or Resovoir Dogs, and a story so thin that I think a game of Pac Man has more of a story.

Kurt Russell plays Stuntman Mike, who basically drives around in his big black car, stalking and murder females. The story follows two groups of females that have altercations with Stuntman Mike. Seriously, that is the whole story.

Dissapointing, and while featuring the trademark Tarantino qualities found in all of his films, apart from some sexy cars, this movie in my opinion is terrible.

As a Tarantino fan, I am shattered

3/10 

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While speculation has been running wild with the recent developments on the war between Blu-Ray and HD-DVD a interesting piece of information has been leaked to the press…

Digital Bits reporter Bill Hunt is saying that his “second to none” sources informed him that both Paramount and Universal are currently in the process of jumping off a sinking ship and joining the Blu-Ray wagon. 

Paramount recently denied the rumour that they were going to the Blu camp, but this is due to the contract they currently hold with HD-DVD, that is keeping them from switching right now, and to confirm these rumours

BUT word on the street is while Paramount can announce any day now that they are making the switch, we will be waiting until at least Feburary 2008 for Universal due to contractual obligations

This sure will be the last nail in the coffin for HD-DVD.

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Seems to be that all my posts of late have been to do with the HD Format war, and yet again another blow to the HD-DVD camp with rumours that Paramount are also leaving the format, right after Warner Bros jumped off the now sinking ship and got on the Blu-Ray wagon

But it seems these could be much more than just forum speculative rumours, word has it that Paramount actually had a clause to get out of the exclusive format contract, which involved if major studios (like Warner Bros) jumped ship, that they could have the chance to do the same. 

If this is true, surely New Line would follow leaving the HD-DVD format officially dead

IF you got a HD-DVD player for Christmas, I’d be trying to take it back…….now 

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Quite hillarious how a few days after I write my piece on Blu-Ray winning the HD War, that Warner Bros announce moving across to Blu Ray exclusive, and HD-DVD cancelling their CES Conference! This is definately a HUGE blow to the format, and sure signals the end of HD-DVD in 2008

With only two studios backing HD-DVD exclusively (Universal and Paramount) I think we will see them jump from this sinking ship early this year

So perhaps a Blu-Ray Xbox in the future is not such an impossible dream after all 😛

Blu-Ray To Win The War?

It seems like the war being raged between Blu Ray and HD has seemed to quieten down, and maybe it’s because HD is off in a dark corner slowly and peacefully dying?

Everywhere I got lately there is Blu Ray advertised. All Sanity stores have now started stocking blu ray movies, as have Target, Big W and EB Games, and Video Ezy stores nation wide have Sony Bravia screens with Sony PS3 displays and Blu Ray Movies for sale, but where is the same exposure for HD-DVD?

I went to JB Hi-Fi in the city to purchase a HD Drive for my Xbox 360 and some movies, and when I got there they had 21 titles, and only 102 HD-DVD movies in stock. I looked at the other shelf where Blu Ray was sitting and there was over 40 titles and just over 280 movies in stock. I said casually to a salesman who was helping me out “HD must be selling heaps this christmas” to which he laughed and said “we can’t seem to give these away, we’ve actually stopped ordering them”. The blu-ray titles were selling like hotcakes, and ultimately I put down my HD purchase and just bought $250 worth of surround sound and blu ray movies

This seemed to be the trend in every store I’ve gone into since, and my blu ray collection is growing at a steady rate. With the new Macbook Pro rumoured to have Blu Ray drives, it seems that HD may have finally lost the war