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Sunday, March 27, 2016

Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice Review (Spoiler Free)

          There is a lot of controversy surrounding Superman. He is an alien that has caused A LOT of destruction in Metropolis at the end of Man of Steel. Bruce Wayne/Batman isn't very happy about this because people who he loved and cared about, along with innocents died in this battle of Metropolis. Batman is ready to take down Superman. These two heavy weights are going head to head while Lex Luthor is planning an evil scheme.
          Ben Affleck absolutely killed it as Bruce Wayne/Batman. One of the checkboxes this movie had to check off was, it had to make Bruce Wayne a compelling character and it had to show why he disliked the idea of a Superman. They did that and more. Wayne was interesting, he was compelling, and I completely understood why he went against Superman. It's very important to have a good Bruce Wayne because if you don't have a good Bruce Wayne, you wouldn't care about Batman. Let me tell you this; This is by far my favorite Batman we've had. All respect to Keaton and Bale's representation of the character, but they didn't really do much when it comes to the fighting/martial arts part of Batman. The biggest thing that has bugged me about their representation is that they treated Batman like he didn't really know how to fight. He just throws punches and that's it. This Batman was brutal. He was dark. He definitely knew how to fight. The action scenes with Batman are by far the best parts about this movie. Along with Affleck, Jeremy Irons was a pretty awesome Alfred.
          I wasn't a big fan of Henry Cavill's portrayal of Superman this time around. I loved him in Man of Steel but, something was just off in this movie. The biggest thing that made me feel that way was his line delivery. It could've been the fault of Cavill. It could've been the fault of the script. I just don't know who to blame for this issue. Another thing that felt out of place was they never really gave any motivation to why Superman dislikes Batman. In the end they try to give him a reason for hating Batman, but even before that the two characters had an encounter and it made no sense why Superman was so pissed of at Batman.
          Lex Luthor played by Jesse  Eisenberg will annoy you. Even if you liked him in the trailers (which I did), he will annoy you. If you have ever seen Batman: Forever with Jim Carrey as the Riddler, that is basically what Luthor is in this movie. A character that is very socially awkward and has lots of ticks that get annoying after 2minutes of watching him on screen. Eisenberg's portrayal of the character was good, it's just the character that will drive you insane. The one thing I liked about Luthor was they made his motivation of why he is doing the things he is doing make sense. They didn't however make sense of how he did the things he did. (This is not a spoiler because it appears in the trailer) when Luthor creates Doomsday, it made no sense of how he did it which caused a lot of confusion.
          Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman was pretty awesome. For the brief time she was on screen I felt really pleased with her performance.
          The action in this movie is fantastic. The fight at the very end where the 3 big superheroes team up and fight Doomsday (again, it was in the trailer so therefore not a spoiler) was awesome. Snyder really knows how to direct action and it showed in this movie. The actual fight between Superman and Batman was awesome. It was like it leaped right of the page of Frank Miller's graphic novel "The Dark Knight Returns" (if you haven't checked that out, GO DO IT.) The action won't be one of the things you complain about when you leave the movie. It's a really pretty movie, it's a good looking movie but unfortunately, it was also a big mess.
          Batman V. Superman has a lot of problems dealing with the narrative/story.  Zack Snyder can direct beautiful movies, just sometimes he has a tough time balancing substance with story. The biggest problem with this movie is that it has multiple movies in one movie but, it didn't find a way to connect these multiple movies/stories. It had the political thriller of what should the government do with Superman, it had a story with Bruce Wayne trying to figure out things about people that may appear in future DC movies, it had a story with Superman having conflict with Batman. All stories are great on their own,  there was just no way to connect them. It felt very messy and very scattered. The worst part is, when this movie already had too much things going on, it opened another can of worms. You can tell that they wanted to include so many little details that it ended up causing the movie to have way more things that it could handle.  Lois Lane has a tough time being a relevant character. She goes back and forth from being a character that needs to be there, to just being Lois Lane.
          At one point Wonder Woman gets an email from Bruce Wayne and the subject line of the email should have just said "Let's get ready for the Justice League!" It was the laziest way to shoe in these characters. The movie was so focused on getting every puzzle piece in place to set up future Justice League movies, that it forgot to be a good stand alone movie.
          Batman V. Superman isn't a good movie, but it isn't a bad movie. You will be entertained by it. There is no doubt about it. It made me excited for future Justice League movies. I saw this once on Friday, and wanted to go see it again on Saturday, and I'm going next week. It's not bad enough to make you never want to see it again. It's worth going to if you want to be entertained. But it's not worth going to if you want a well done, cohesive comic book movie. It's not that bad.
Batman V. Superman gets a 2.7/5

Go give this movie a shot.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Zootopia Review

          Zootopia tells the story of a rabbit named Judy Hopps who really wants to become a police officer. This is not something that is normal. In fact if she does become a police officer (which she does) she will be the first ever rabbit that is part of the police force. When she manages to get a case that has to do with missing mammals, she teams up with a sly fox named Nick Wilde that tries to help her solve the case.
          This movie is fantastic. It has so much more meaning than I ever expected it to have. It's definitely a more mature/adult oriented movie than I thought it would be. This is a great well rounded film. Not only is it a great film for kids to enjoy, it's a film that adults will enjoy as well. In fact it has a lot of themes that kids will not understand like sexism, racism, drugs, etc... I'm being dead serious about that. I was absolutely surprised about what kind of issues this movie handled. At some points I was surprised about what they put in the movie because kids just won't understand it. Now, don't get me wrong this is still a film kids will have a great time watching. However it is a film that I believe adults will actually enjoy a little more.
          Zootopia puts more effort into telling you the story it wants to tell, rather than putting it's effort into making you laugh. It really felt like this movie was made for adults but instead of humans being in the movie,  there were animals that walked and acted like humans.  Even with this movie tackling the certain themes, it was extremely entertaining and fun.
          The two main characters were so great! Ginnifer Goodwin as Hopps and Jason Bateman as Nick Wilde did fantastic voice work. Same with all the other celebrities that had a part in it. JK Simmons, Idris Elba, even Shakira did a great job. Michael Giaccino (it seems like he composes every Disney movie now a days) once again strongly delivers, giving this movie a fantastic score that I already downloaded. I don't want to sell short the amazement I had watching the action scenes. The animation was beautiful, it felt much more real then other animated movies.
          Zootopia is definitely in my top 3 Disney animated movies, it's also in my top 5 animated movies of all time. The characters were great, the script is one of the best, the message is well above anything I've ever seen in a kids film before. And I can't forget to mention how funny this movie was. It was hysterical. There were points where I was laughing, and I just couldn't stop. I can't wait to see this movie again because I know there were jokes I missed when I was laughing.
          I'm going to give this movie a perfect, 5/5

And there is a great Godfather reference that I really appreciated.