Actually did not want to be among the dogpile of half-stars that this movie was receiving from peers, so much to the point I was even remembering that I’ve seen much worse this year as I watched The Emoji Movie. And while said thought still remains rooted in my head, I can only come out of The Emoji Movie confirming that it truly is as bad as it is being made out to be. Not since Foodfight! have I come across such a lazy mishmash trying to pose as family entertainment in the most cynical manner and while showing off such an ugly sense of cynicism being at full display. The whole time I was sitting through The Emoji Movie I had only refused to believe that a conceptualization so asinine would be made into a real product by a major studio given what Foodfight! has proven and it seems clear enough that within later years to come, this will only go down along the like.
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The famous espionage story we’ve already come to know done to the very best of its ability. An innocent man getting himself tangled into a case of mistaken identity, and the quest to clear their own name – something that we can only expect Alfred Hitchcock to make the very best from, and with North by Northwest, he has done exactly that and formed what is without a doubt one of his very best films. But of course one can only count on Alfred Hitchcock to have made some of the most exciting thrillers of Hollywood’s classic era, and nowadays they still wouldn’t lose a touch of what made them exciting to watch during their time. But the case with Hitchcock is that his thrillers haven’t only been the very best of their own genre, for films like North by Northwest only show why he was among the most clever of filmmakers working in Hollywood, he was one of the very best in general.
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Roland Emmerich collaborator Dean Devlin, who had garnered fame from writing Independence Day and the 1998 Godzilla film makes his own directorial debut with Geostorm. Although Devlin was responsible for writing some of the more tolerable entries in Roland Emmerich’s filmography there isn’t really so much being said there and without Emmerich, what exactly is to be expected with half the effort of what gave us Independence Day? Perhaps something more stupid, one that would at least feed off from whatever visuals it can throw at you as a means of hiding an incredibly corny human story – typical of modern disaster films. If San Andreas showed us that this formula wasn’t limited to Roland Emmerich, I can’t imagine thinking Dean Devlin would have done anything outside of such.
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I’m still baffled how a product like The Snowman ended up becoming as ravaged as it is despite the amount of esteem that its crew seems to have, whether it be the fact that Martin Scorsese was an executive producer who was signed on to direct, to have Tomas Alfredson take over. I would only have expected that from the fact Tomas Alfredson had directed the excellent Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy he would only have transitioned rather smoothly when directing another mystery film of a smaller scope with The Snowman, but clearly something had gone wrong. If I were to get something out of the way, The Snowman as it is does not work, but it isn’t wholly bad – rather just a film whose potential is evident but never expressed properly. So how exactly do you pinpoint where everything went wrong with The Snowman?
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I like seeing an entertaining slasher film becoming the backdrop for another film being about finding out what has been done wrong by oneself. As a matter of fact I was on board with the idea of the film’s protagonist being stuck within a time loop to to continuously die before finding out who was her killer as long as the film knew what it was. It was easy enough for me to say that for the most part, Happy Death Day seemed to be exactly that – but considering I didn’t expect much out of the film it also caught me where the film was growing to become, and I was in for what would have been a pleasant surprise. Then quickly enough, a twist that seemed so cheap, rushed, and even predictable rendered everything pointless. It’s a shame, because Happy Death Day wasn’t a movie that really took itself so seriously and created a charm from such, but it never seemed fully utilized.
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Actually not too bad considering where else it could have gone. Martin Campbell’s career has never always been the most consistent but when he’s at his best he can assuredly create an exciting action scene (among many reasons his Bond films are among the best of the bunch). At his worst, however, he seems to have no control over what he wishes to tell (The Legend of Zorro, Green Lantern). With that having been said, it’s also fitting enough to say that Jackie Chan is always a delight to watch in the action genre when the film gives him enough room to work with – leaving part of me to hope that this would be a chance for the better side of Martin Campbell to show itself once again. To some extent, it was worth it for The Foreigner proved itself to be much better than it had much capacity to be – even if its more lackluster elements still are noticeable.
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Most certainly a product of its time, but not in a good manner at that. Michael Winner’s nihilistic Death Wish is a ruthless film on all counts where it is expected most, but in the end, it never seems to be a film that goes beyond that. That wasn’t the worst thing I found about Death Wish, but it was also difficult enough trying to keep myself staying invested. It was difficult to stay on board with all of the ugliness that was on display, for apparently the philosophy wasn’t what Brian Garfield had intended with his original novel – and that isn’t even the worst part of Death Wish from my own perspective. Perhaps it already has found itself speaking to what America had been going through at the time, but considering how quickly have times changed decades within its own release – it’s clear how much of this does not hold up.
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I was never bored watching American Made, but all I could ever think of as I was seated down was what this movie would have looked like under the eyes of Martin Scorsese. I feel like Doug Liman was trying to remind his audiences of how much of a blast The Wolf of Wall Street was, by taking a true story and turning it into a breezy adventure. But I’m not entirely sure that Doug Liman completely understands what made said film feel as if it was moving by so fast, because the most I kept thinking of was how much I would much rather be watching The Wolf of Wall Street. It seemed to be the worst recurring thought to have watching American Made because I know already that it isn’t the first film of its sort to be done within this style, and it isn’t made with the same cleverness that made its originators work as well.
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It still amazes me that after thirty years of being butchered from studio interference and having been ignored during its original theatrical run, Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner still feels refreshing as if it were something that had only recently came out. Like the best science fiction films it isn’t one whose wonder lies within the excitement created by its distinctive visual style but how it presents itself – not as a showcase for hypnotic set pieces but as a meditation on life, pushing towards what we are afraid to ask. Even today the genre subversions still feel present and on rewatches I only find myself appreciating it all the more, after having already been left fascinated with a first watch. But it wasn’t until more revisits mere fascination grew into adoration, and soon the resonant effect of Blade Runner only made itself clear.
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The mere idea of a sequel to Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner was always going to be troubling to me because the original is one of my favourite science fiction films, let alone one of my all-time favourite films. Seeing what Denis Villeneuve had done for the science fiction genre with his recent Arrival had only left me raising my hopes, and to say they were met is an understatement when talking about Blade Runner 2049. For not only is Blade Runner 2049 a sequel that expands beautifully upon the creativity that was shown in its predecessor but one built with the same thought and care which made the original as remarkable as it is. It isn’t a sequel that merely retreads a path that people are familiar with, but one that expands upon the ideas its predecessor had established forming not only a worthy sequel after a long period of time, yet also one destined to become a landmark of its generation in the same way the original film is.
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