Advertisements

Category Archives: Comic Book Movie Reviews

Kick-Ass 2 (2013)


Kick-Ass 2 Poster

Kick-Ass 2 (2013)

After being surprised at how much Kick-Ass (2010) actually kicked ass, I was excited to see this sequel.

Kick-Ass 2 good group

This time around Kick-Ass (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) has teamed up with a group fellow wannabe superheroes that he inspired to dress up and fight crime.  Red Mist (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) is out for revenge on Kick-Ass and has gathered a group of so-called super villains to destroy him and everyone he knows.

The movie was written and directed by Jeff Wadlow and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Chloe Grace Moretz, Morris Chestnut, Jim Carrey, Clark Duke, John Leguizamo, Lindy Booth, Claudia Lee, Donald Faison, and Garrett M. Brown.

I did not like this movie as much as the first one.  At times, it was pretty tacky.  Ass was kicked and laughs were had, there was a lot of quality action, but it just was not as good as it could have been.  It was less believable and more predictable.

Kick-Ass 2 Carrey

With the addition of Jim Carrey, I thought that for sure Kick-Ass 2 would be funnier than Kick-Ass.  I was wrong.  There were a few more laughs, but not because of Carrey.  His role was not big enough to make a difference.  Most of the other new characters in the film were not developed enough.

Moretz stole the show in the first movie and she was still probably the best part of this one, but she did not get the opportunity to kick as much ass as she did in the first film.

Kick-Ass 2 bad group

The film concentrated a little bit too much on the drama that the characters were having at school and at home instead of concentrating on them fighting crime.  This made the film a little slower at times and less enjoyable.

Even though I didn’t like a few aspects of the movie, it was still entertaining enough to have fun watching.  Almost all sequels are not as good as their predecessors, but maybe I just went into this film with expectations that were too high.  The story went a slightly different direction than I anticipated, but I still laughed and had a good time.

Kick-Ass 2 Johnson Moretz

I rate this movie a 6.5 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Rent.

Advertisements

The Wolverine (2013)


The Wolverine Poster

The Wolverine (2013)

Recently I watched X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009) for the first time and this made me more enthusiastic about seeing The WolverineHugh Jackman’s Wolverine has won my vote for best X-Men character.

The Wolverine Hospital Bed

In The Wolverine, Wolverine (Jackman) is summoned to Japan by an aging, old friend whom he saved during the war.  The old man has become very rich and powerful and he wants to repay Wolverine for saving his life so long ago.  However, he may have ulterior motives.  When he reaches Japan, Wolverine becomes caught up in a war between his old friend’s empire and the Yakuza.  Wolverine becomes weakened and for the first time faces mortality.

The film was directed by James Mangold and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Hal Yamanouchi, Ken Yamamura, Rila Fukushima, Tao Okamoto, Svetlana Khodchenkova, Hiroyuki Sanada, Brian Tee, Will Yun Lee, and Famke Janssen.

The Wolverine Jackman

Some of what I especially liked about X-Men Origins: Wolverine is also what I liked about The Wolverine.  The film was concentrated mostly on the life of just one X-Men character and therefore it was more enjoyable.  You are able to feel more for Wolverine because you get to see his whole story.  There is much more character development than the first 4 X-Men films and this allows the viewer to become more attached to the characters and the problems that they face.  Also, not every single character in the movie was a mutant and that made the ones that were mutants more unique and therefore more likable.

The Wolverine face peel

In comparison to X-Men Origins: Wolverine, I felt that The Wolverine was a slight step down.  It was a little bit longer than it needed to be and it lacked the star power.  The supporting cast does do a quality job, but there is not another actor in the film that can compete with Jackman.  X-Men Origins: Wolverine had Liev Schreiber and Danny Huston.  The bad guys in The Wolverine were not bad enough.  They did not have as much of a screen presence.  Jackman dealing with his own mortality was almost more intense than the enemies that he faced.  Don’t get me wrong.  The film was still very fun to watch, but bigger stars could have helped make it more powerful like X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

The Wolverine

Hugh Jackman kept reminding me of a young Clint Eastwood at times throughout the film.  He was a fierce cold-blooded loaner ready to do whatever he felt was right and not caring who got in his way.  Jackman is 2 inches shorter than Eastwood, who is 6’4’’, but maybe it was Jackman’s haircut, facial hair, and attitude that was reminiscent of a middle-aged Eastwood.  The slight resemblance contributed in making Wolverine a helluva bad-ass to be reckoned with.

In my opinion, The Wolverine is the second best X-Men movie to date.  X-Men and action movie fans alike should approve of the quality of the film.  The special effects are sharp, the action is extreme, the characters are entertaining, and the movie as a whole is a blast.

The Wolverine Jackman Train

I rate this movie an 8 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Buy.

Click on the link below to see a picture and read about the time when my wife and I and some friends got into a fight with Wolverine and Iron Man.

We Got Into a Fight with Wolverine and Iron Man

If you liked The Wolverine, then you should certainly enjoy X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009).

Kick-Ass (2010)


Kick-Ass Poster

Kick-Ass (2010)

I delayed seeing Kick-Ass for 3 years.  Honestly, at the time that it came out, it appeared like it would be jam-packed with gratuitous amounts of stupidity.  I was fed up with superhero movies being the trend and given the fact that Nicolas Cage was a part of it made me worried.  Cage is one of my favorite actors, but at the time that he made Kick-Ass he was taking any and every movie role offered to him.  He was having money problems and he needed to get out of debt.  During that time, he systematically dismantled his image and his career by force-feeding the world 11 movies over the course of 3 years.  I thought the title was pretty lame and I was very skeptical to say the least.

Kick-Ass Johnson

The movie is about a nerdy high school kid (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) who one day decides that he wants to be a superhero.  He dresses up like a superhero and therefore thinks that he is one.  Fighting crime proves to be much more difficult than he anticipates and he gets in way over his head.

The film is directed by Matthey Vaughn and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Nicolas Cage, Mark Strong, Chloe Grace Moretz, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Michael Rispoli, Clark Duke, and Jason Flemyng.

Kick-Ass Fighting

After writing off Kick-Ass three years ago, I never really thought twice about it until I learned of the upcoming sequel a couple of months ago, Kick-Ass 2 (2013).  I heard from a few different people that Kick-Ass was actually pretty awesome.  I decided to give it a chance.

The movie was actually pretty bad-ass.  The soundtrack set the tone quite nicely with a couple of different songs by The Prodigy.  Later it transitioned to Elvis Presley and even Ennio Morricone.

Kick-Ass Strong Plasse

Nicolas Cage was better than I expected he would be.  The film was during his low point, but his character turned out to be moderately entertaining.

Mark Strong was a superb hard-ass.  He played his part perfectly.

Kick-Ass Moretz

Aaron Taylor-Johnson was alright, but it was the young Chloe Grace Moretz that stole the show.  She sure kicked some ass.

I was shocked at how much I enjoyed this movie.  It was far better than I originally anticipated.  There is a bit of language, blood, raunchiness, and violence, but overall it was mildly funny and supremely amusing.  It was a well-acted and clever, kick-ass journey into an almost believable world where superheroes exist.

I rate this movie an 8 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Buy.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)


X-Men Origins Wolverine Poster

X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)

With the release of The Wolverine (2013) this weekend, I thought that it was about time that I watched X-Men Origins: Wolverine.  I have seen all of the other X-Men movies and I used to watch the cartoon as a kid, so I’m not sure why I waited so long to watch this movie.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine tells the story of Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) as a child and his earlier life prior to the other X-Men films.  Wolverine and his brother Victor Creed (Liev Schreiber), both mutants, are forced to leave home together at a young age.  They fight through a number of wars together until they are recruited by Colonel Stryker (Danny Huston) to become part of an elite unit made up of all mutants.  Eventually Wolverine disagrees with what the unit stands for and decides to leave.  He moves away, falls in love with a woman, and leads a simple life.  Time passes and Wolverine’s life gets turned upside down when his old unit wants him back.

X-Men Origins Wolverine Huston Schreiber Jackman

The film was directed by Gavin Hood and the rest of the noteworthy cast includes Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Durand, Will.i.am, Taylor Kitsch, Daniel Henney, and Dominic Monaghan.

After watching this film, I am sort of kicking myself for not watching it sooner.  It does an excellent job of showing where Wolverine came from and why he is the way that he is in the other films.  After the movie, I gained a greater respect for Jackman and his Wolverine character.

X-Men Origins Wolverine Jackman Water

This is my favorite X-Men movie so far.  What I especially liked about the film is that it concentrated on the life of one of the X-Men instead of overflowing the movie with tons of mutant characters with too many stories to go around.  This made it possible for greater character development and helped to create a more meaningful story.  Of course, there are a number of X-Men characters in the film, but they didn’t try to tell the story of each one of them.

X-Men Origins Wolverine Gambit throwing cards

Gambit/Remy LeBeau was one of my favorite X-Men characters when I was a kid, and it was fun to finally see his character in a live action film.

X-Men Origins Wolverine Jackman Schreiber

Jackman and Schreiber both brought a level of fierce intensity to their characters that were very exciting to watch.  This, in conjunction with the solid supporting performance by Huston and the film’s awesome special effects helped to make X-Men Origins: Wolverine the sharpest X-Men movie in the box.

I rate this movie an 8.5 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Buy.

Click on the link below to see a picture and read about the time when my wife and I and some friends got into a fight with Wolverine and Iron Man.

We Got Into a Fight with Wolverine and Iron Man

Note: Jackman and Schreiber were both in Kate & Leopold (2001) together.

If you enjoyed X-Men Origins: Wolverine, then you will probably like The Wolverine (2013).

Man of Steel (2013)


Man of Steel Poster 2

Man of Steel (2013)

With the countless number of sequels, remakes, and superhero movies that are being spewed out these days, I have become very skeptical and picky when it comes to deciding which of these movies I will see and which I will avoid like the plague.

Honestly, Man of Steel was a difficult choice at first.  My initial reaction was derision.  I rolled my eyes and scoffed.  How many Superman movies does this world really need?

Man of Steel Cavill Adams

Superman and Batman are probably my favorite superheroes.  What I always enjoyed about those characters was the fact that they both had alter egos and they both were always trying to do good by helping people.

The thing is I like Batman better than Superman.  Batman is more real.  He puts on a costume and goes out, mostly at night, to right wrongs in his city.  Batman is fed up with the scum in his city and he tries to clean up the streets.  Superman on the other hand, is an alien from another planet who ends up on earth.  Superman looks human, but has a number of superpowers that make him almost godlike.  He disguises himself as a human, but puts on a costume when its time to fight the bad guys.  He is faster than a speeding bullet, can fly, has x-ray vision, and is virtually invincible except around kryptonite, etc. etc.  Superman is a godlike alien from another planet.  Batman is a human vigilante.  Which is more believable to you?

Man of Steel Crowe

Following my initial reaction about the new Superman, I learned who all was cast in the movie.  I raised one eyebrow as I contemplated the film’s potential.  The cast includes Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner, Amy Adams, Diane Lane, Michael Shannon, Laurence Fishburne, Harry Lennix, Richard Schiff, Christopher Meloni, Antje Traue, and Ayelet Zurer.  Great cast right?  Except Henry Cavill is a dud and he was cast as Superman.

Man of Steel Cuffs

In my opinion, they needed a far superior actor to play the lead role.  Sort of like Christian Bale played Batman.  Instead they surrounded an almost nobody with an awesome cast.  The part will boost Henry Cavill’s career, but that doesn’t make him a better actor.  They needed someone like Mark Wahlberg, Bradley Cooper, Jeremy Renner, Jake Gyllenhaal, or even Matt Damon.

Still, the strong cast was enough to make me want to see Man of Steel.  It also helped that Christopher Nolan produced the film and both he and David S. Goyer wrote the screenplay and story.  Of course, Nolan and Goyer also both wrote The Dark Knight Trilogy, which Nolan also directed.  However, Nolan did not direct Man of Steel, Zach Snyder did instead.  Snyder is a capable director, but Nolan is far superior.

Man of Steel

Man of Steel is about a boy who finds out that his parents on earth are not his real parents.  It is believed that he was sent to earth from a different planet.  These details are revealed to him by his earth parents after he figures out that he has super powers.  Now he must learn what he was sent to earth to do and what type of man he will become.

Man of Steel on fire

The film was bursting at the seams with special effects.  The aspects of Superman that I do not enjoy were highly prevalent in the movie.  I don’t like the overuse of super powers and Michael Bay-esque explosions, along with multiple superhuman aliens in an endless battle of invulnerability.  Everything in their path becomes obliterated and it all seems so unrealistic.  With that being said, I expected the film to be that way.  But, I also hoped that the film would concentrate more on the humans on earth than the aliens on Superman’s home planet.  That hope was shattered.  It became more about Superman stopping an alien invasion on earth than Superman just stopping bad guys on earth.

MAN OF STEEL

Although there were a few things about the movie that I did not like, I will admit that those things were done tastefully.  The special effects were amazing.  They were too much at times, but they were also insanely awesome at times.  The cast was great, but Henry Cavill could have been replaced with someone better.  Everybody else’s performance made up for his.  It’s not that he was bad, but he just could have been much better.  The supporting cast should not be better than the main character.  That is not a solid foundation for a film.

Crowe, Costner, Shannon, Adams, and Lane all made the movie worth watching.  They used their acting super powers to totally make the film.

Man of Steel Shannon

Man of Steel is a worthy update to previous Superman movies.  Even a superhero skeptic like myself, enjoyed the movie.  With the obscene amount of action in the film, it will certainly be better on the big screen.

I rate this movie an 8 on a scale of 1-10.

Buy, rent, or run?  Buy.