As you all certainly know by now, I am a huge fan of the DC Animated films because I feel they have the edge on Marvel in that department. Plus, there are only 15 days left (including today) and I’ve been wanting to see today’s film Justice League: Throne Of Atlantis because I am an Aquaman fan. Arthur Curry (Matt Lanter) has always been in search of answers to certain questions his whole life, but when his surface father is killed in a mysterious attack, it sends him into a downward spiral. After certain unrest in Atlantis, Queen Atlanna (Sirena Irwin) wants Mera (Sumalee Montano) to find her son Arthur in hopes that he can be the link between both worlds, but she is killed by her devious other son and now Arthur will have to avenge her and save both worlds from colliding. The film also stars Sean Astin (Justice League: War) as Shazam, Rosario Dawson (Death Proof) as Wonder Woman, Nathan Fillion (Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox) as The Flash, Shemar Moore (The Brothers) as Cyborg, Jerry O’Connell (Stand By Me) as Superman, Jason O’Mara (Son Of Batman) as Batman, Sam Witwer (Crank) as Orm, Harry Lennix (Man Of Steel) as Black Manta, Juliet Landau (Ed Wood) as Lois Lane, and the film was directed by Ethan Spaulding (Son Of Batman).
I feel like every DC character story starts with them either being a drifter trying to figure out their place in life or an alcoholic trying to find their place in life. That was definitely the case in this film as Arthur Curry is a drunkard trying to figure out exactly who he is after the death of his father. I thought that the film was definitely a cool origin story for Aquaman that gives you some insight into who he is and what he can do. The film also introduced us to new scenarios like Wonder Woman and Superman dating which was a little different for me. One of my favorite things about the film is when he actually learns to use his powers especially the one where he summons the aquatic life like the shark that eats a certain villain in the film. The battle scene between the Justice League and the hydra/squid creatures was pretty cool and the overall battle scene at the end was good as well. Shazam is really starting to become one of my favorite characters as well because he looks like an adult, but he’s really just a kid so he acts like one in a way (his humor at least). My only criticism of the film is the little love story angles that you get, but I do understand why they did it (for subplots of course). I thought the voice acting was good and the story was well written. I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade.
I usually reserve Wednesdays for my action film piece called Ass Whoopin Wednesdays, but sometimes there are films that supersede everything. A Quentin Tarantino film by definition is one of those films and that is why there is no Ass Whoopin Wednesday flick. So, we are checking out Tarantino’s eight film The Hateful Eight which stars Kurt Russell (Tombstone) as hang man John Ruth. All John wants to do is deliver a prisoner of his named Daisy (Jennifer Jason Leigh) to the town of Red Rock so that she can be hung. The only problem is that there is a massive blizzard and when they get to a safe place, John is having a hard time trusting a couple of guys he picked up along the way and the four other strangers he encounters in the safe house. Is John right about them being up to no good or will he get the job done. The film also stars Tim Roth (Reservoir Dogs) as Oswaldo Mobray, Samuel L. Jackson (Avengers: Age Of Ultron) as Major Marquis Warren, Walton Goggins (House Of 1000 Corpses) as Sheriff Chris Mannix, Demián Bichir (The Heat) as Bob, Michael Madsen (Kill Bill Vol. 1) as Joe Gage, Channing Tatum (22 Jump Street) as Jody, Zoe Bell (Death Proof) as Six Horse Judy, Bruce Dern (Django Unchained) as Gen. Sandy Smithers, James Parks (Kill Bill Vol. 2) as O.B., and Dana Gourrier (Django Unchained) as Mindy.
I want to start this paragraph by saying that this was an excellent film that didn’t tell you that it was a certain type of film and it didn’t live up to it. This film was exactly as it was presented and that was mostly a mystery film set in a western of sorts. I love how Tarantino calls this his eight film and it’s called The Hateful Eight which could be a nod to Italian filmmaker Federico Fellini who named his eighth film 8 1/2. I wouldn’t be surprised if this was true considering the fact that Tarantino is just as much a fan of cinema as I am. It was hard to choose a stand out performance from the film because everyone from Russell, Goggins, Jackson, and even Leigh did an amazing job in the film. What helped them was the fact that the film was well written and the dialogue is amazing as what would be expected from a Tarantino film. So as you can see, it was hard to just choose one person as a standout. The other factors that make this film amazing is that it was filmed using 70 mm film which gives it that authentic look and the soundtrack was done by Ennio Morricone. Ennio deservedly won the Oscar for best Score because it definitely fit the type of film that it was. If you are a true fan of Tarantino then do not miss out on this film, it is a classic. That is why I am going to give the film an A- and it gets that because Django Unchained was the better Western. Plus there are definitely somethings that are going to happen that you don’t see coming.
While all of us who are fans of comic book movies wait for Ryan Reynolds (Waiting) to star in Deadpool (which comes out in February), I figured I would review the last film he made to date. The name of the film is Self/less and it was directed by Tarsem Singh (Mirror Mirror) and the film looks at a topic that all of us may have wondered about. What if we possessed the ability to take the brilliant men of the world who are old and about to die and transported them into new bodies? It brings up the idea of immortality and man’s ability to play God. That was the question that was raised to New York real estate tycoon Damien (Ben Kingsley) as he was slowly dying of Cancer. He was lead to believe that the bodies that were available were created in a lab and so he makes the jump. Unfortunately as he gets used to his new body (Ryan Reynolds), he begins to discover that maybe these bodies belonged to people who had souls of their own. As soon as he discovers this, he is on the run and he has to protect the family of the man who once occupied the body. The film also stars Natalie Martinez (Death Proof) as Madeline, Matthew Goode (Watchmen) as Albright, Victor Garber (Argo) as Martin, Derek Luke (Captain America: The First Avenger) as Anton, Melora Hardin (Hot Chick) as Judy, and Michelle Dockery (Non-Stop) as Claire.
Ryan Reynolds takes a lot of crap for some of the roles he chooses where people feel he can only play a certain part, but I beg to differ. We know that the film didn’t do as well in the box office as the studio had hoped, but I feel like people should given the film a chance. It was definitely a cool and new concept for a Sci-Fi thriller like this. It gives you an insight into what the possibilities could be and what the side effects can be by taking over a new body. Ben Kinglsey is an amazing actor to begin with and he plays a bitter old man who has always appreciated the money first over the real joys of life. Ryan Reynolds is kind of the coming of age part of the film where he begins to realize that he loved all the wrong things in life and decides to make up for it. I really enjoyed the acting from Matthew Goode, he does an amazing job play a manipulative man hell bent on perfecting his research and will do anything to achieve it. There’s plenty of action, suspense, and mystery to please any fan and I love the special effects in the film. Now I pose this question to all of you. Would you sell your body to save someone you loved even if it meant never seeing them again? Would you take over a body knowing that a real soul once possessed it and is still kind of there? Check out the film and answer that for yourself. I am giving the movie an B+ for a final grade.