Saturday, June 28, 2008

Wanted: Movie Review

I was thinking this movie was to have Bon Jovi's Wanted Dead or Alive, but it seems that it isn't really necessary to fit with the movie's dark and entertaining theme. Indeed, this is an R rated movie to be kept away from kids, and definitely is the best one by far to be had in this summer. In fact, I think this is much much better than Kung Fu Panda (Though, I was not able to catch it myself today. Darn it.)

Meet Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy), an accountant manager sitting in a cubicle repeating the same thing in life over and over again with an annoying and cheating girlfriend, a very horrible boss and a double crossing best friend to top the things off. What a horrible life indeed, that was until he met Fox (Angelina Jolie), a trained assassin that helped him meet with Sloan (Morgan Freeman), the man behind the Fraternity, an association made for assassins to be trained to pull of hits on men all over the world. The motto, kill 1 and save a thousand.

Ever watched a Mazda drifting on the sides of a building? If you do, you've probably at least watched the trailer of Day Watch, the movie made by the visionary director Timur Bekmambetov. He brought Day Watch and Night Watch to life from the books, and now he did Wanted, which is so much better than the two. In fact, those 2 movies were already amazing that I thought this one was nearly incomparable.

The plot is really well crafted and this movie ties up what was needed. Though, there are some parts that are worthy of mention to further address back the lack of clear clarification. Perhaps a "i know why they did so" part of the movie. The script is great, provokes us to truly think of what is our real destiny. And the shots were great too, just that the flaws are so minor that you'd probably just ignore it considering the experience was already great enough.

James, this was a character for you. You were amazing in covering up your Scottish accent, and you really deserved this away from your role in the first Narnia. Angelina Jolie was smoking in this one, and if guys thought that her hot body was enough to buy a ticket for this movie, please do more than that and appreciate her role as Fox since she was really good in this. Morgan Freeman was great in his role. But I think his role in Batman Begins was the best by far. Still there are some quirky moments of Morgan's acting that made a lot of sense and made the movie much more entertaining. The cast of supporting actors were also great (They even had a Russian in there, haha.) and fits everything back in place.

I'm an action junkie, and I may attest this is a really worthy movie in comparison of other tough guy hero flicks. I was amazed by Len Wiseman's ability on providing solid action scenes in Live Free and Die Hard, but Wanted makes everything much better with a great story to boot and providing even crazier action scenes. The jokes are spot on, though perhaps in Malaysia, some of them aren't truly spot on to begin with for their taste. But still, the jokes work well.

We could really tell ourselves that we have a big relation to Wes. He is just like anybody else in this never realizing his true potential of what he may really be. Not to say that we are made to be assassins, but we have something deep within us that we feel is there for us to unearth. You could really see the struggle and remorse that you'll feel on Wes and bound to have you thinking of your own life.

Go watch this movie. Stop reading my review and go. From story to action, from running and gunning to crazy investions with mice, you will love this movie. To Timur, great job and great team. But 1 flaw, how come the gun didn't bring out the sound? Your hiding it? :P To end this, I would like to quote from Wesley which I think is the best quote I've heard in a long time.

"What the f*ck you've done lately?"

The Incredible Hulk: Movie Review

You will like it when Hulk is angry. But you would not like it so much on the other parts when Hulk is not angry. But still, it is encouraged to make Hulk hungry... eh, i meant angry. You'll find that joke when you see it. :)

Bruce Banner (Edward Norton) is a gifted scientist experimenting on gamma radiation. He was so sure that he'd found a way of making gamma radiation work for him, but everything obviously went wrong. So, he is now on a refuge to evade the army led by General Ross (William Hurt), leaving his beloved Elizabeth *Betty* Ross (Liv Tyler) and going against a new recruit English recruit named Emil Blonsky(Tim Roth), or the latter man known as Abomination.

This movie isn't a sequel to Ang Lee's Hulk. In fact, this is a new movie about Hulk, which in account already is the 3rd version of the movie parts (Spiderman was also filmed in the older days, where they had 2 versions of the opening. The older had lots of sequels.) Better yet, this is even better than Ang Lee's version. Sorry my friend, though you did do a good movie to me, but this one by Louis Leterrier has achieved a good level of praise. But, I recall hearing someone say it was as good as Iron Man, but I would really beg to differ.

The movie's plot is well portrayed. But it lacks the certain "oomph" to make it feel that we are sitting on the edge. The camera shots and angles were neatly crafted, but there are some loose ones in the movie itself. Like the chase scene, could've been done better with a bit more of positioning on the shots. The scripting was ok, and so so. But it gets to the job done well.

Ed Norton did good than Eric Bana, period. He portrays what we know of a scientist, scared of something within him and really is doing his best to get rid of it. His body frame and size makes it a really big contrast between him and the Hulk, which is great to serve as a man who is weak and small. Liv Tyler, hurm she could've done a bit more better on her expressions and tone of voice, but she still gets the job done as a leading lady. In my opinion, Jennifer Connelly could've taken the part back and made it better by a little bit. Tim Roth was a bit...confusing. I wasn't quite sure of how he got into the whole mess and really unsure of what his character is supposed to be. good or bad? mean or kind? justice or obsess? Try figuring it out for me. William Hurt, fits perfectly. Perfectly speaking, the man was made for this role as General Ross. He gives a show as a army man, and also as a father only wanting what's best for his daughter. Nuff said.

Action sequences were finely crafted, and the amount was what i was hoping for from Iron man. The action, for me was better than Iron Man. Jokes were there, and good too. The chase scene is a good display of military tactics but as earlier said the camera could've been positioned better. Louis told interviewers that he wanted the movie to have doors open. And surely he did, but some loose ends were definitely not tied, because they should have been at the very least.

If you've watched the old 1st version of The Incredible Hulk, you'll be happy to see Lou Ferrigno in the movie. In fact, he was helping to voice Hulk for the movie, and he did a great job on it. His voice and script would definitely make fans cheer. And with every Marvel movie, there's Stan Lee ey? This one too. So, have fun watching him ey?

I liked Ang Lee doing the 2nd version of the movie. It was an ok movie to me. But this one was much better in comparison. The incredible has arrived, and it is by far a great ride to the finish. But don't expect the ending to be satisfying, but it should leave you with a good amount of interest to see a better sequel.

PS: If I'm not wrong on this, do your best to make sure to see 1 last scene of General Ross drinking. And do watch Iron Man's last teaser to further understand what I mean. The man will be talking to the General, and lets hope for the best the next big movie, and I mean really big movie, will come. :)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Get Smart: Movie Review

Have you ever seen Get Smart before? It was acted by Don Adams (passed away in 2005) as a very bumbling US agent who somehow manage to always makes thing bad at first and the best in the end. And that was the 1960's, and now we're in 2008 seeing the same by Steve Carell instead. And its a movie also instead. I got my chance today to really watch this, and it seems that I have a little bit of a edgy feeling to this.

The movie is about Maxwell Smart (Steve Carell of The Office fame) who has long enough wanted to become a field agent for CONTROL (honestly, I have no idea what does it really mean). He got his chance when KAOS (the bad guys) made a ruckus on wanting to blow up places and placing heavy interest with nuclear bombs. So Agent 86 (that's Max over there) along with Agent 99 (Anne Hathaway), Agent 23 (Dwayne Johnson) and the Chief (Alan Arkin) set out on a mission to stop KAOS from wrecking...erh... chaos...

Looking at the people who acted here, some hit the spot, while some don't. Dwayne was good as Agent 23, charming, good, witty and his acting really shows what tough guy really says. Alan did great as an old man wanting to kick young butt. Anne was basically doing an ok job if you asked, a bit pale in comparison with her previous performance in The Devil Wears Prada. While Steve, knowing how annoying and how mad he is, give a bit of a good job and sometimes not too good there. So, hits and misses.

The comedy is awesome. the jokes are really spot on. I'm a sucker for action, and also for comedy. But this movie doesn't really fuse the two well enough to make it a great treat. There are some parts that you wish the laughter should go on and not the action instead, but not vice versa. The plot is good at the start, but doesn't finish up too well in the end. The story does feel a bit loose at the last part, but still ok and perhaps forgettable in the end. Some camera takes could've really been improved, but overall its still an ok thing.

I see a good amount of reference to the old series, especially that shoe phone. Of course, the idea of a cell phone wasn't really accepted in the past, but it was a great tribute to see that shoe phone. haha. I was really hoping to use the posters of the faces being covered (perhaps except Steve's) for this post, but well that one should do. Ken Davitian, The Great Khali, Terry Crews, Masi Oka all made their appearances here and they look great as a supporting cast.

If you tell yourself that you want to knock yourself out watching a comedy with a little hint of action, here is that movie for you. But don't bank on having the loose ends tied, which actually did frustrate me a bit. But if you've enjoyed the trailers, I don't think you have much more to anticipate unless if you want to really see how foolish can a parody to James Bond be. So knock yourself out. :D

Friday, June 06, 2008

No More Heroes: Wii Game Review

Ever heard of someone toying with the idea of insanity in a game? Well, if you've met Suda-san, creator of the original Killer 7 series for Capcom, you'll feel that No More Heroes is exactly like being at home. Honestly, the psychoticness never ends. And that means its very good.

The game revolves on Travis Touchdown, the guy holding some kind of sword that emits light to it (in other words, a light saber. :P) He finds himself killing a some guy named Helter Skelter and ends up being number 11 in the rankings of Assassins. His goal, to only fight someone better than him, and end up as number one.

The game is very very different from any that I've encountered before, and it's a really great change to playing other standard action games (Remember God Hand? That was uber fun. :D). The game plays in third person view, and you walk around killing people. And somehow, also doing some side jobs like picking up coconuts, moving lawns and so on. Game reviewers have rated this game as purely psychotic as there is really no sense of playing this game, because it never made any sense. Besides, when was the last time a protagonist ever said he only wanted to be number 1? That is exactly where this game charms.

In battle, you'll fight using the A button. To stun opponents, go for the B trigger. The Wii-mote is waggled to do finishes, which are very very fun to do and look at the gore for it. The nunchunk is used to control Travis and also as a bonus for wrestling moves. Of course, it makes no sense again to do wrestling moves when you have a light saber right? But, it is a great move to use that when your opponent is on the floor, you can execute a downed kill by just pressing the A Button when it flashes on screen. And since its a light saber, you have to charge it when it goes low. What, you think it uses UV lighting? To charge it, erh, you need to waggle it left and right. But it also works if u, urh, follow what Travis is doing on screen. Do it to feel embarassed if you're a guy. :P The Wii-mote speaker is of good use as you can hear sounds of the light saber flashing, listen to the phone call by that psychotic lady, and other intersting little tunes that just works with the game.

The game centers most on killing, and that's it. It's fun to play some training games, buy some clothes, hunt for treasure, or cruise in the city with a big big big bike, and somehow it doesn't get boring.well, except for the bike part, but we'll get to that later. The boss battles range from great to awesomely challenging. Some are easy to figure, but I won't be surprised if you find yourself dying a few times, because the challenge is hard and worth it.

But, I should say that all good games do come to a bad point. The city feels, necessary and unnecessary. Necessary, because the treasure hunting and Lovikov balls make it so, and the un part, is because some locations are too darn far to travel. We also see lots of problems with the city as Travis could somehow skid to the left when he rams a car. And people don't splatter in blood. Man... The battle is spot on, yet some minor improvements could've been made on that baseball part.

The graphics are cel shaded. Just like Killer 7, Auto Modelista, Viewtiful Joe and so on. Yet, Suda-san wanted to use additional touches like pixelated graphics. And honestly, it looks awesomely charming. Ah, maybe I'm biased because I'm more of a pro pixel junkie, hehe. but still, even the sound sizzle as it reminds you of hearing tunes from the older days. Man, talk about nostalgic. The dialouge is good, but the lady needs to either be Japanese or French, and not both, because she sounds like a Japanese attempting to be French.

Overall, there are good action games, and then there's No More Heroes. This is obviously a good killing game that will last you for a good amount of time, along with being senseless and great to be certified for. If you could overlook the minor problems, you won't be surprised by landing yourself with the great game.

PS: Thanks to Corez for lending me the copy to review it. hehehe. :D Owh, and if you do get the game and want to get to the motel early from somewhere far away it, just fly into the river or sea, you'll get there back easily. :P