I am going to give you the spoiler alert warning right from the beginning because the film I about to review is too amazing that I may spill some details. Spoiler Alert: There is going to be some information leaked in this article that could give away some details or all the details in the film. So either proceed with caution or do not read any further, but you were warned. From the minute that it was announced that Hugh Jackman (X-Men) was going to star in his very last X-Men/Wolverine related film ever I had to see it for myself. Jackman stars in Logan, a film that looks at a much older Wolverine than we are used to in a very different world. There are hardly any mutants left on Earth after many of them were killed. Logan goes by a different name to disguise himself amongst the non mutants of society. All of that is put to risk when a young girl who is believed to be a new mutant shows up at his compound on the border of Mexico. Now Wolverine has to gather up Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and the little girl named Laura (Dafne Keen) before the dark forces catch up to her. The film also stars Boyd Holbrook (Milk) as Pierce, Stephen Merchant (Tooth Fairy) as Caliban, Richard E. Grant (Bram Stoker’s Dracula) as Dr. Rice, Eriq La Salle (Coming To America) as Will Munson, and the film was directed by James Mangold (Walk The Line).
There is so much to praise about this film that I do not know where to start. The story is absolutely captivating as we are introduced to Weapon X-23 (Laura) who is basically Logan’s daughter because of how she was made. We see this guy who has never known how to love because of the fact that he feels that everything he loves dies. Then the girl comes along and she challenges all of that throughout the whole film. He also has to deal with a very sick Charles Xavier who by the way is a weapon of mass destruction because of what his mind can do and I love how they explored that angle in this film. The film has the feel of an X-Men movie without the 100% look of one and that is what I loved about the film. It is stylistically like a Johnny Cash song, it feels very melancholic in tone almost like you know the end is near and you’re on this last ride. The acting was absolutely amazing from everyone and the back and forth dialogue between Stewart and Jackman is absolute gold. You almost feel like they are father and son the way they banter at each other in the film. This may just be the best X-Men movie or Wolverine movie ever made and I know that it’s a bold statement to make, but after watching this it’s true. The script was amazing, the acting was amazing, the cinematography was amazing, the soundtrack to the film was amazing, so what more could you possibly want from the film? If you do not go out and see this then you don’t know what you are missing. Make sure you get to the theater on time because there is something special from someone in the beginning that is hilarious. I am giving the film an A+ for a final grade.
There are reasons I decided to do this challenge and it was to see epic films and there was an ultimate goal that I wanted to achieve besides hitting number 366. That goal was to be at this very point where I am reviewing Rogue One: A Star Wars Story for today’s film. The film takes place some twenty somewhat odd years after the events of Star Wars: Episode III. The Imperial Empire has taken over the galaxy with Emperor Palpatine firm in control. The Rebel Alliance with their backs against the wall discover that an Imperial pilot has defected from the empire with information on a weapon that the empire is creating from the lead engineer himself in Galen Erso (Mads Mikkelsen). After learning this herself, Galen’s daughter Jyn (Felicity Jones) will risk it all along with a group of rebels to retrieve the info to help the Rebel Alliance. The film also stars Diego Luna (Milk) as Cassian Andor, Alan Tudyk (Zootopia) as K-2SO, Donnie Yen (IP Man) as Chirrut Îmwe, Wen Jiang (Chinese Zodiac) as Baze Malbus, Ben Mendelsohn (Australia) as Orson Krennic, Forest Whitaker (Arrival) as Saw Gerrera, Riz Ahmed (Nightcrawler) as Bodhi Rook, Genevieve O’Reilly (Glitch) as Mon Mothma, James Earl Jones (Star Wars: A New Hope) as Darth Vader, and the film was directed by Gareth Edwards (Godzilla).
Spoiler Alert: There is going to be some information leaked in this paragraph that could give away some details or all the details in the film. So either proceed with caution or do not read any further, but you were warned. First off, I am going to star this by saying that I really and truly enjoyed the film from beginning to end. I thought it was a great stand alone film that was made to explain some details leading up to episode IV that many of you may have wondered about. Now was it better than Star Wars: A Force Awakens? While it may be a valid question, I find it a little unfair because they are two different films. I loved a lot of the individual performances in this film from people like Donnie Yen who was funny and awesome all at once. Felicity Jones was terrific in the film as Jyn and while Diego Luna may not be Han Solo, he was still very cool as well. This film had Darth Vader and even though his appearance was brief, it gives this an edge over F.A. I have to admit that his entrance was pretty bad ass. This film may have had too many quick hard cuts during a lot of the scenes which would be my only criticism. The story was great and the acting was great and it injected humor right in the perfect spots. The battle scenes were pretty amazing as well and it reminded you why you loved Star Wars. I did think it was very awesome to see the late Peter Cushing in the film once again even though he is not listed because it was a CGI version of him. Wait till you get to the end for the surprise visit that comes then. I think there is very little to criticize about the film, but I’m sure others will find the flaws. I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade.
Sometimes there are films that come out that either get a bad review or there just not in the theaters that long that I overlook them. That was definitely the case with today’s film Hail, Caesar! which was gone before I got around to seeing it. The film stars Josh Brolin (The Goonies) as Hollywood Fixer Eddie Mannix who works for Capitol Studios. Eddie has a lot on his plate with having to take a western star (Alden Ehrenreich) and shuffle him to a completely different genre, trying to hide a pregnancy out of wedlock from the public eye, and even trying to figure out who kidnapped his lead star (George Clooney) during the middle of filming a really big epic movie. It’s either that or he accepts a job to work in a completely different field. The film also stars Ralph Fiennes (The Grand Budapest Hotel) as Laurence Laurentz, Scarlett Johansson (The Avengers) as DeeAnna Moran, Tilda Swinton (Moonrise Kingdom) as Thora/ Thessaly Thacker, Channing Tatum (22 Jump Street) as Burt Gurney, Frances McDormand (Fargo) as C.C. Calhoun, Jonah Hill (22 Jump Street) as Joe Silverman, Veronica Osorio (Diego And Valentina) as Carlotta Valdez, Alison Pill (Milk) as Mrs. Mannix, Fisher Stevens (Short Circuit) as Communist Writer, and the film was directed by Ethan and Joel Cohen (No Country For Old Men).
I am a huge fan of the olden days of Hollywood and America at the time with the fashion, hairstyles, and just the way of life. So it’s easy for me to say that I really enjoyed that aspect of the film, but as far as the overall film was concerned, I didn’t think it was a great film. I thought the film was relatively OK for a Cohen’s brothers movie. The film for a while seemed to be a behind the scenes look at what went down in the classic Hollywood era of the big studios and the way they covered up scandals from the press. The kidnapping of George Clooney’s character to me seemed more like a side story than the main focus of the film which kind of bothered me, but usually anything that was happening it always went back to it. Some of the things I enjoyed watching was how the films were made and the big scenes that we saw like the pool scene with Scarlet or the bar scene with Channing. Those were some of the cool moments of the film that maybe people overlooked. The film was also commentary on the ideals of those times especially with the paranoia of communism. That was a big issue back in those days and the writers are the ones that organize it in this film. They feel they need more recognition than they get which was also maybe a sign of the times then. It’s not a terrible movie, but it’s not great either. That is why I am going to give the film an B for a final grade. Rent it from Redbox or On demand if it’s available.