Day 172: Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)

star trekFor today’s film, I wanted to pay tribute to Anton Yelchin (Alpha Dog) who recently passed away by checking out one of his films that I hadn’t seen yet. Of course that film that I chose for today is Star Trek Into Darkness. In this latest edition, Captain James T. Kirk (Chris Pine) finds himself without a ship and a crew due to a mission gone wrong. One day when Kirk and his Captain Pike (Bruce Greenwood) are being briefed about a recent attack, they too are attacked by a strange man who possess uncanny powers and strength. Kirk is then sent on a mission to recover the one man wrecking crew named Khan (Benedict Cumberbatch) before he destroys the whole entire world as we know it. The film also stars Karl Urban (Dredd) as Bones, Simon Pegg (Mission: Impossible Rogue Nation) as Scotty, John Cho (Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle) as Sulu, Anton Yelchin as Chekov, Zoë Saldana (Guardians Of The Galaxy) as Uhura, Peter Weller (RoboCop) as Marcus, Alice Eve (She’s Out Of My League) as Carol, Deep Roy (Charlie and The Chocolate Factory) as Keenser, Noel Clarke (Adulthood) as Thomas Harewood, and the film was directed by J.J. Abrams (Star Wars: The Force Awakens).

star trek 2I honestly do not believe that there is anything J.J. Abrams touches that isn’t awesome. The first Star Trek film was amazing, Episode VII of Stars Wars was great, and this was an excellent sequel. This one starts off with a bang and it never lets up for two hours and that is what I loved about it. The film is essentially a prequel of what’s to come for all the films that were already made and most especially Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan. I thought Benedict Cumberbatch did an amazing job as the superhuman Khan, but I have to admit that I do have to watch the Star Trek films because I haven’t seen most of them. I need to at least see the Ricardo Montalban version to do my compare and contrast of the two. Anyways, One of my favorite things about these films is the CGI because we can do unbelievable things and create worlds tat would have been time consuming so long ago and sometimes impossible. The action sequences are amazing as well and there is plenty of it. One thing I have to say about J.J. Abrams is that he has made Star Trek likable in a sense that anyone will go see those films now whereas before it was Star Wars vs Star Trek. This film actually has me excited to see the next one, but it will be sad t know that it’s Anton’s last ride as the beloved Chekov. I am going to give this film an A- for a final grade.

Day 134: The Book Of Life (2014)

the-book-of-life-movie-wallpaper-2014For today’s film, I wanted to watch it because I am a big fan of animated movies when they are done right and cool and because I’ve seen every Friday The 13TH film ever so can’t do those. We’ve seen Disney and Dreamworks dominate the field, but in 2014 20TH Century Fox released The Book Of Life. In the town of San Angel, Mexico, there lives three kids with very different paths in life. You have Manolo (Diego Luna), a young man who belongs to a long line of bullfighters. There is Joaquin (Channing Tatum), a man who will go off and fight wars and battles to become a great general and then there is the beautiful Maria (Zoe Saldana), the sophisticated daughter of the General Posada (Carlos Alazraqui) who both of the men I mentioned are fighting for. So a couple of spirits in La Muetre (Kate del Castillo) the ruler of the land of the remembered and Xibalba (Ron Pearlman) ruler of the land of the forgotten place a wager on who will win the hand of Maria in marriage. Will it be Diego or Joaquin? The film also features the voices of Christina Applegate (Don’t Tell Mom The Babysitters Dead) as Mary Beth, Ice Cube (Ride Along) as the candlemaker, Hector Elizondo (Unnecessary Roughness) as Carlos Sanchez, Danny Trejo (Machete) as Skeleton Luis, Ana de la Reguera (Nacho Libre) as Skeleton Carmen, Placido Domingo as Skeleton Jorge and the film was directed by Jorge R. Gutierrez.

book-of-life-2640_0180_0127_beauty5k_v001_cropI am definitely fascinated by these types of stories and the lure of the Day Of The Dead festival that takes place in Mexico. I saw one review call the film’s story line formulaic and while it might be it is definitely visually stunning to say the least. In the film, you get taken into three different worlds that are all so visually stunning and enchanting to the eye. I mean you get to check out some old Mexican folklore with some very stunning animation, what more could you possibly want from the film. The story is typical where two men are fighting over the girl, but you already know who is going to win her heart right from the beginning. It’s just a question of what obstacles and road blocks is he going to have to face to get there. I think that is what most reviewers are referring to because we’ve seen it all before, but with the effects I can easily forgive them for that. You have to pick and choose your battles with films, but this one is easily enjoyable and pleasant to watch. It has quite the amazing cast attached to it and Guillermo del Toro’s name is attached to project as a producer so what else could you possibly want from the film? I am going to give the film an B+ for a final grade.