Society has always had the need and the want or desire to play God throughout history of cinema (e.g. Frankenstein, Ex Machina). Of course like all of them, they are usually destined to be doomed. So for today’s film, I chose to watch the newest film in Artificial Intelligence entitled Morgan. Morgan (Anya Taylor Joy) is a new breed of artificial intelligence kind of humanoid that was breed as an organism by scientists as an experiment. One afternoon, Morgan has sort of a metal lapse and she attacks a scientist. The corporate company that is paying for the experiment decides that it wants to send in a risk-management consultant by the name of Lee Weathers (Kate Mara). Lee must decide whether Morgan is a valued asset or to terminate a dangerous asset. The film also stars Rose Leslie (The Last Witch Hunter) as Dr. Amy Menser, Michael Yare (Game Of Thrones) as Ted, Toby Jones (Captain America: The Winter Soldier) as Dr. Simon Ziegler, Chris Sullivan (Stranger Things) as Darren, Boyd Holbrook (Gone Girl) as Skip, Vinette Robinson (Sherlock) as Brenda, Michelle Yeoh (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) as Dr. Cheng, Jennifer Jason Leigh (The Hateful Eight) as Kathy, and the film was directed by Luke Scott (Loom).
The idea for the film was there and for the most part they did a fine job, but maybe the execution didn’t go off as planned. The first part of the film is kind of boring as it’s getting you up to speed with what is going on and exactly who Morgan is. The real excitement in my opinion is when Paul Giamatti shows up to test Morgan as to whether she is an asset for the company or not. That is when the intensity of the film really starts to build up because for a while all you get are pieces of a secret until that secret is finally revealed to you as to why she was locked in the box again. Giamatti is really just there to mess with her mind and prove that she in fact is not human and therefore is not capable of feeling real emotions. He is a ball buster and the only one who is going against science. I didn’t recognize Anna Taylor Joy until I saw that she was in the film The Witch. She was phenomenal in that film and she did a pretty good job in this one as well. One thing that I will say is that she was kind of freaky looking to me which might have been a very small aspect for what they were going for. The one thing I didn’t understand was what was the point of the character of Skip? He really doesn’t serve a real purpose in the film, but he’s just there. There’s a big twist at the end of the film, but if you do the math you’ll figure it out as soon as it happens. I saw the ending coming as soon as it started to unfold which doesn’t bother me too much, but they could have done better with that. Overall, it’s just an OK film that was looking to explore a different aspect of A.I. in cinema. I commend them for that, but it won’t change my grade this time. I am going to give the film an C+ 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.
For today’s film, I felt like I need a little mystery and drama in my life and I found today’s film laying around. The film is called The Jacket and it stars Adrien Brody (Predators) as Jack Stark, an injured gulf war veteran. Jack Stark was injured in the line of combat and sent home to Vermont suffering from acute Amnesia. After a mishap, he is accused of murdering a police officer, but because of his condition they believe he has no memory of it and he is sent to a hospital for the criminally insane. While he is there, he is put through some torturous acts by Doctor Becker (Kris Kristofferson) who puts him in a morgue drawer. While in the drawer, Jack has some revelations about the future and he tries to solve it before he meets his untimely death. The film also stars Keira Knightley (Domino) as Jackie Price, Jennifer Jason Leigh (The Breakfast Club) as Dr. Lorenson, Kelly Lynch (Road House) as Jean Price, Daniel Craig (Sky Fall) as Rudy Mackenzie, Steven Mackintosh (Kick-Ass 2) as Dr. Hopkins, Brendan Coyle (The Raven) as Damon, Mackenzie Phillips (One Day At A Time) as Nurse Harding, and the film was directed by John Maybury (The Edge Of Love).
The best way that I can describe this film to you is to think of The Butterfly Effect, but in a mental hospital and without the bad repercussions and distorted realities. By going inside this morgue drawer, he is able to go into what some would call hallucinations, but he is actually in the future. The only thing is that at first they don’t really explain that he is in the future very well as you think it’s a memory that he is having until he finds one key object that you’ll have to watch for yourself to find out what I am talking about. I do however want to say that truly believe that this film had to be Adrien Brodys best role that he had ever done in his career. He was absolutely brilliant in the film and I have to give it to Daniel Craig as well. Craig is really convincing as a crazy guy who believes that he isn’t that crazy. Keira Knightley is smoking hot and we get to see a little more of her than I expected in the film, but she does great as well. I am surprised I haven’t seen more of this film on Television or anything else. I stumbled upon it not realizing that I had the movie and I never watched it (believe me for some strange reason I have a lot of those). Anyhow, I was very impressed with the film and enjoyed it a lot. They list it on IMDB as a horror film, but more suspense in my opinion. I mean the tones of the film are very dark and bleak like a horror film, but it’s more of a mystery story. So, I am going to give the film an B+/A- for a final grade because it borders on both of those grades.