Sunday, November 21, 2010

Need For Speed: Hot Pursuit: PS3 Review

If you think this is a reboot of the classic hot pursuit released in the old days, then you would be almost right. But this is actually a full reboot of the NFS series. After so many disappointing sequels (except for Shift, though by that time, people were really down and out), EA knew they need to do something, and so Criterion Games was called and now we get this. Thankfully, this is truly a wonderful experience!

Lets start with the game. There is no story. But don't get disappointed since you don't really need one. You can choose to be a Racer or a Cop, each progressing through levels, unlocking more races, cars, equipment, leveling up equipments until you get to rank 20. And that's about it. What makes this fun is the sheer collection of supremely awesome cars you can only imagine of owning. Lambos, Maserati's, Paganis, McLaren and so many more grace the title with pure awesomeness. Some people may complaint of not having Ferrari's and even Toyota in the game, but its still fine really.

If you're a racer, you can partake in race events or preview events of hot cars blazing through tracks in a time trial thingy. There will also be events where you need to dodge cops and win the race. That's a little bit more trickier, but truly very fun.

As a cop, you can also partake in preview events, go on a one on one high speed car chase (You always loved watching it, now go do it!), or take down multiple racers at any given time.

And then there's multiplayer. Bring your race event, one on one (called Interceptor) or Hot Pursuit events into the foray. The connection can be good, but best played close with everyone around your area. You may get jumping or blinking cars if you do choose to play with people further than you.

And then, there's Autolog.

have you ever noticed how Leaderboards are always so hard to tackle? Well, why no tackle one among your friends? The best part here is that Autolog even tells you if you're beaten by one of your friends. keep track of your time, post on the Wall (Somewhat like a Wall on facebook) and even add your friends who are playing the game. Autolog makes this game so addictive that it is so amazing to even be playing it with your friends. the downside is that, if you don't have friends, you won't have people to fight with. But still, Autolog is so central to the experience that nothing else matters.

I could use a better soundtrack, since I only like 2 songs in the whole game. The graphics are neat and it really feels great to be racing in the outdoors. No modern shit coming around you, and that's really fine. The roads were meant to be trashed anyways.

Closing Comments

If you have always loved racers and don't spending some money over Gt5, get this. It will be so worth your time because its so damn fun.

Graphics: Neat and crisp. there are some jaggies, but I can live with that.
Story: None. But who cares.
Gameplay: Just enough variety to keep you satisfied.
Replay value: Autolog will keep your blood boiling and make sure that you want to beat your friend, no matter how many times you have to take.

Kyo's Score: 9/10.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Buried: Movie Review

Since I like using other posters, I used this instead. And WOW. What a wonderful experience for me. Very haunting too. Since this movie can go 2 ways (you either love it or hate it), I suggest that if you don't want to see a guy stuck in a coffin for 94 minutes and just that only, don't watch it. But if you want to see how does it feel to be stuck in a coffin for that long of a time, read on.

Paul Conroy (Ryan Reynolds) is an American truck driver working in Iraq. He and his crew was ambushed by Iraqis and now, he's stuck 6 feet, or maybe even lower under and he has to cough up 5 million dollars as ransom so that he can escape. But from the time that he has (Movie time began at 6.05PM) to 9PM to pay up, can he survive?

The director was really having fun with the movie and its audience. Ryan probably felt it was a very good script and we all have to agree. Being stuck in a coffin for 94 minutes is no joke. I think its hard. But frankly, I somehow felt that Ryan did not fully deliver his A Game. Somehow, something was a miss. But I couldn't pinpoint it.

The script was also a genius. Truly awesome. Reason being you can see how they bring in so many issues being spoken off that truly makes the movie so believable that it goes higher with each note possible. The situation became so tensed that it really drives you at the edge of your seat wondering how Paul would make it out alive, or not.

I left the cinema hall with this very closed feeling. Like my whole mind was in a coffin. The dark theatre hall gave me a very horrible glimpse of how it feels to be really stuck in that coffin and to place yourself there. I was so quiet that i was holding the bar of a railing at The Curve after I left the movie. Got scolded by my GF but its alright, she didn't know what I went through. It all felt real. It was creepy.

I have to give kudos to the camera work. Very well done. All the while the movie can feel so closed. heck, it could even just be in a small studio and it would've been cool enough. The time lapse also was very accurate in the beginning. But somehow, it was not towards the end of the movie. (The time began at 6.05Pm to 6.35PM and a little bit. It did make up 30 minutes of the time. And then he woke up after sleeping a bit around 7PM. And then 8.15PM onwards). These little details were really awesome.

And the ending, well, thank God it wasn't typical, but definitely left a WTF moment for the hall I was in. Even the last line in the whole film shows that the director was really having fun with its audience. Its really a piece of work.

Sadly, the movie would only work once. That's it. Its not enough for repeated viewings. Once you know what happens, you're ok already. Perhaps one of the weakest points, but still shouldn't stop you from doing all of this.

Kyo's Score: 9/10. One of the best movies I had this year left feeling creeped out and smiling a little bit once it ended. I really had good fun. Even if it took a lot out of me to get out of that spooky feeling. hehe.

The Other Guys: Movie Review

Ever wondered why you were always the sidekick and never the hero? (Life situation applies entirely) Well, meet the other guys. That's you right there jumping with guns toting at shooting at bad guys. Well, before this you always had to sit on a desk doing paperwork. Feels shitty don't it? Well, that's also the movie in some ways. How it started was so nice that it was badly done in the end.

The Other Guys comprise of Detective Allen Gamble (Will Ferrell) and Detective Terry Hoitz (Mark Wahlberg. WOOT!). 1 loves his desk pushing papers and developing Iphone apps (Faceback. Seriously. Cool) and the other, well, a disgraced detective who shot some baseball players knee and cost him his job. Owh, and he learned dancing, sarcastically to mock people. And he's fantastic at it too. That's a laugh out loud riot.

The story comes when 2 of the best police officers took a leap of faith into their deaths. IDIOTS. Well, that's Samuel L Jackson and Dwayne Johnson right there. When they died, the other guys gotta get up. So, they tried, and ended up uncovering something much bigger than they did expect.

What I loved about this movie? Its jokes are nice. (Wooden gun!) Michael Keaton was AWESOME, then again as always. And having Dwayne and Sam at the beginning was really cool and fun to watch. Marky Mark may have found his muse as a tough guy in a comedy. No kidding, ever since Date Night he was still in awesome mode. I don't know how the Fighter is going to look like but hey who knows?

However... the real problem was how sour the editing was done. Seriously, it was so horrible that it did not work well in so many ways. You get high moments, and then uber low. It was utter rubbish. It completely marred the whole movie experience. I'm gonna agree with another that Hot Fuzz would be the best choice.

So if you still wanna watch it, go for the early part, leave in the half way. The Good GUys win. Done. No need to spend more time on this.

Kyo's score: 6/10. If it weren't for the characters who worked their asses off, I would've left.

Devil: Movie Review

As a Muslim, I believe in the existence of many things. Satan, Jin, Ghosts, and so on of other worldly things. So I'm not surprised with the movie Devil really. The Devil can be anything or anyone. And the Devil will always be there to mislead. So when it comes to this movie, why the Devil choose an elevator to trap 5 strangers and execute them one at a time?

The story is basically the Devil taking 5 wretched souls to hell. The best part, among the 5, one of them is the Devil itself. Can you trust the person next to you then?

When it comes to the story, i would M Night deserves a "boleh tahan lah" rating. Its quite an old story of perhaps good vs evil, and why mankind should also do good and abstain from evil. But I can't help but feel that all this feels a little too cheesy. but perhaps that's just me. Though, that's not really my main gripe considering how M Night has been pure shit the past few movies.

My main gripe however was the dialogue. The script all felt cheesy. Its not charming in its own entirety. In fact, the only time I remembered the dialogue was fantastic was when the Devil revealed itself as... one of the members in the lift. I won't tell you who, but I love the quote that the Devil said. In fact, the Devil would probably be the only smartest being in the whole movie. Everyone else including the detective didn't do much to convince that everyone is to be judged.

So, for an average story and bad scripting issues, I can give this a pass. I have hated horror movies for quite a while now. But this does feel like the same ranks as other crappy Malay Horror movies I've seen (Then again, like there was any good Malay horror film made so far.).

Kyo's Score: 5/10. Honestly, I left the theatre just asking forgiveness from Allah for all that I did. For only He can forgive for all my sins.

Friday, August 20, 2010

When the PS3 gets Hacked: Kyo's View

Word buzzing around the Internet is that some fellows from OzModChips were successful on hacking the PS3. What does this actually mean?

Well, for starter games can now be backed up. That's the polite term. The harsher terms, games can also be downloaded and pirated. Good for those who want to back up their games (although to be frank, I haven't seen my BDs spoilt so far and still see no reason why I should back it up since I believe in it), but maybe bad for developers who built games just to get ripped off by gamers who are cheap. And we know how the whole world is cheap.

Good also that it'll lead to homebrew developments. Or even cheats. I'm not sure how, but it sounds and looks like it should work. To a good advantage. Maybe Sony should have done something like Apple and Google by providing a market for micro apps. Who knows eh?

What do I think from all this? Personally, after telling myself to quit piracy for so long, I couldn't be bothered. I don't have a problem on where I can get my original games and I don't mind shelling the extra cash to get it. I live in a 2 room house with my parents and sister, so I'm nowhere near rich. And I drive a bike to work, that tells you how cheap I am.

But I stand by being responsible. This is my effort on being a civilized man who doesn't need to resort to crime like what I have done before. Its a shameful thing, but i'll leave that as memories.

So, regardless of what happens, this is nowhere going to affect me. Besides, my Yakuza 4 is coming anyways. Nowhere near fazed. :P

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Scott Pilgrim's Precious Life: Graphic Novel Review

For a very long time I have not graced comics or even graphic novels (Graphic novels being never, until Joker and The Killing Joke). But that did change this year, when I started with Joker and The Killing Joke (thanks syefah for the present) and now, its Scott Pilgrim. And I must say, where have I been the past few years to not even notice this?

Scott Pilgrim is a Canadian slacker. Plays in a band, has just started dating a highschool girl (Scott is 23 btw), and is enjoying his life. Until, a particular lady has been using his dreams to travel and make deliveries for Amazon Canada. Immediately, he became obsessed, and even worst, the girl is real, and her name is Ramona Flowers. Insisting to go on a date, he orders something and baits her on a date, which she accepts and he had a blast. Well, until, Matthew Patel, the first of Ramona's League of Evil Exes shows up. Now, in order to date Ramona, Scott must defeat Ramona's 7 evil exes. The thing is, did he manage with the first one?

The comic got a Harvey award (one of the best acclaimed for comics and graphic novels) and is almost ready to be screened in movie theaters this week. Malaysians definitely have to wait a little longer to get it (November, Dammit). I took notice of this movie and went gaga, because this is not your typical story, this is an action-comedy-romance-musical (As Edgar Wright puts it) stuffed all in one, and it really works.

Scott is in someways, very annoying and cocky. However, the first volume of 6 gives you a slight hint of how he is and what he's gone through. The first few pages would make you feel you loathe him, but you want to stick around to find out what really happened to his life, and even Ramona's (which Scott conveniently discloses in the book that it'll be explained in the proceeding volumes, way to go on breaking the fourth wall).

The other characters also work to help Scott tell his story. You've got his gay roommate Wallace (which he conveniently sleeps on the same bed with him), and then Ramona (who I actually imagined did sound a little stale like her movie counterpart) with her rollerblades going across Toronto (which the roads are heavily snowed, you figure it out), his part of the band (Kim Pine being a double standard character) and even his girlfriend Knives Chau (who's Chinese mother speaks like a real Chinese. And that's a riot). They all work very well in his life.

When it comes to plot, this book has just the right pacing and timing for it. I didn't feel like putting the book down even though I just came through the closing chapter. And the humor bits, are very fun and more conveniently suited to the gaming generation (which happens to be a little weakspot which i'll get later). Heck, Bryan even gave its readers a chance to play a song from Sex Bob-Omb, Stephen Stills' band (which Scott is the bassist). heck, the lyrics are even funny as hell.

The art style feels like a crossover of Japanese manga and American drawings. And you get... Somewhere in the middle. Its nothing to shout about, but the style does feel quirky, which probably sets the right tone for me.

The weaker part, audiences may not really know the jokes and references the book is trying to make. Well, maybe not all of it since it does include some clever jokes that hit on lots of wonderfully scripted parts. The version I had was probably a bad print (the pages were a little disoriented), so you may wanna be careful.

At Rm 40.90 (Borders and Kinokuniya, MPH is RM 45.90), the length of the book is really nice. Its probably just the right amount of time, and you may want to pick up a 2nd reading once you're done running through the whole book. Available in 6 volumes, this is the start of something lovely and I don't think you'd regret getting it. Regardless if you're videogame proficient or not, don't miss out and do check out the movie trailers of Scott Pilgrim vs The World. Its a total blast.

Kyo's score: 9/10. Comics/Graphic Novels are always fun in my books. hehe.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Batman: City of Scars: Fanmade Film Review

Dear All,


To begin, go over to Over there, go ahead and find Batman: City of Scars and you will find a 35 minute video showing the fanmade film. And seriously, it is such a treat.

The story goes with Joker escaping from Arkham once more. This time, he successfully killed the parents of another child, leaving him orphaned. Bruce feeling that similar pain confronts and tracks him once more, and to question himself what was he become.

Its amazing to know that this is from a fanmade film. It trumps the sequels that was during the Clooney era, stands on par with Kilmer and Keaton, and is so close to Nolan's effort. Its truly outstanding. heck, even the gadgets make the detective look damn rich. And that was actually fun (I want the Batpod!)

The script feels fresh and we're mostly treated to a monologue of Batman questioning himself (Not gonna spoil anything). The score is lovely and quite haunting at times. While the shots may be its weakest point sadly. It does feel messy a little but perhaps it works to show the grit of Gotham.

The cast did a lovely job. Batman fits (even better than Bale's) and the Joker is nice (Sorry, Heath is still the best in my book when it comes to mischief and haunting). The rest of the case is also good where you have Harley Quinn, The Ventriloquist joining the lovely ensemble.

heck, I was even blown away by the stunt and fight scenes. It was really fun to watch.

But alas, the real point to bring out is how the story really does, and it fits well. It makes us question yet the answer lies with Batman himself.

Overall, i'd recommend 35 minutes of your time for this film. It is truly spectacular and I give kudos to the guys who did this. Congratz, you have made Bob Kane, and his legion of fans proud. :D

Kyo's score: 8/10. Truly a wonderful effort. If you're interested with other fan made stuff, go to youtube and find the Joker interrogation scene. The one with 13 million views. You'll know why. :P

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Salt: Movie Review

When it comes to food, I like them less salty than the normal. Most of the time I would be eating saltless food or just a little bit. But this movie, has proven to me that it is a little too salty to my liking (That means, its a bad thing to me).

Evelyn Salt (Jolie) is a CIA agent. When a Russian Spy defects and unveils that Salt apparently is a secret agent working for Russia, she is being hunted down. Knowing that she is innocent, she goes out on a run to clear her name. But something else is brewing, something much bigger than Salt's worth as an agent.

I hate movies that gives me the ending after 20 minutes of watching it. This is that movie. Because of that, I tried to sit down and see if there's anything else worth watching. Sadly, there's not much.

So obviously the plot was poorly conveyed and the editing was poorly done (you can throw away some scenes but NO... you had to put them in). The shots, worst. I DON'T NEED CLOSEUPS. Seriously shots were horrendous.

Script gets cheesy and dull. But scores were good though. But not enough.

And about Jolie, yeah, she's great in this one. Hands down for that. But I think i blame the script and the director for making me guess what the hell is Salt trying to do actually. We don't even know what emotion she's feeling (COME ON!).

To my book, its a weak movie and its probably one of the weaker offerings this year. Now to see how Last Airbender bombs the cinemas.

Kyo's score: 3/10. Only for the good score and Jolie. Sorry miss. This movie is just too bad to taste.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Inception: Movie Review

When a movie establishes a set of rules, it will strictly follow those rules to the end. What Inception does to its viewers is throw so much of the rules that you actually need to bring in your brain to the cinemas to truly enjoy this movie. This isn't The A-Team (which I still feel biased and love that more over this. :P), and this might just be the beginning of a bigger sensation then what the current trend is doing, discussing about a movie that would probably leave a big impact in our lives (whether you notice it or not). To sum things up, go watch it and find out. But if you're intrigued to find out my gripes about the movie, read on.

Dom Cobb (You-jump-I-jump-man) is an extractor who excels at stealing ideas within your subconscious through dreams. After a nasty string of events, he was forced to go on the run and longs to return home to his kids. His chance props up when Saito (Ken Watanabe) offers him a chance of salvation, but only through inception. Inception is the act of implanting an idea within a person's mind, that would lead him to believe that it is his own. It would stay with the person because the act will be done subconsciously (and I have had experiences that your dreams and subconscious can be VERY motivating). Assembling a team of experts, they travel deep within the mind of Robert Fischer Jr. (Cillian Murphy) to do the act. But, for a concept that has never been existed before, would it be possible?

There's no doubt the cast is fantastic. And kudos to Joseph Gordon Levitt, Tom Hardy (Major kudos from me), Ken Watanabe (Damn, his English is really excellent, no where near powderful) and even Cillian Murphy (who I believe gets more screen time). Leo is no doubt at his prime, which i don't need to mention anyway (And for those of you who still think he's the same guy from Titanic, go watch Blood Diamond and The Departed. You don't get nominated for two movies at the same time in the same year).

Perhaps the main star of the movie is the story, its director and its editor. The director did a great job (as Nolan has always done ever since Memento) and the editing for this movie is also fantastic (so much of weaving that it all fits perfectly).

The movie may riddle you to ask what really happened and what's going on (maybe a little spoiler there. :p) but as it is the star, I won't spoil much over here. Just that a good concentration and observation may answer most of the question that will pop up.

So, my gripes? lets begin with action. While you have the fantastic zero gravity action sequence (Kudos JGL for a very good performance and knowing where to go to make things look so seamless), the rest of it felt ho hum. But however, i do begin to understand this part. You see, we as humans would be limited to certain thoughts and limitations (mere human beings would be practical, not imaginative). Hence in the dreamworld, we're treated with some sort of mild mannered action sequences that doesn't look bombastic or innovative (only exception was Zero Gravity).

There was also a moment that I felt was a little too much to explain. It could have been done simpler (because I was wondering how much time has passed, and my answer was "not much"). It was only in the early sequences that it suffered this problem.

Putting all that aside, I still believe this is a wonderful movie that I would recommend for all to see. Its not too taxing (If you want something that really is taxing, go for Insomnia and Memento. Those are worse) but you need to open yourself up to the concept and listen carefully.

Owh, as for the ending, if you ask me, it was better that way. Why? Well, go watch it then you'll know. :P

Kyo's point: 9 out of 10. Minus 1 due to ho hum action sequences and draggy feeling at the first. And lucky you JGL. Hope you get that Riddler part (Though, Rainn Wilson don't look so bad either.)

Friday, June 25, 2010

Toy Story 3: Movie Review

If only Thin Lizzy could change their song title to Toys are Back in Town, then this would have been perfect. But the movie itself is a wonderful, and perhaps dark, journey into understanding how we should never forget those that we hold dearly.

Andy, the owner of the story, is all grown up. And he's about to leave college soon. Like most growing teens, we'd end up forgetting about the toys that we grew up with. We threw them out, put them in the store, attic, wherever. As the toys were headed to the Attic, except Woody (Tom Hanks), all of them were mistakenly taken out and headed to Sunnyside, a day care centre for kids. Greeted by Lots-o-Huggin Bear and Ken (Michael Keaton, NO KIDDING), all was fine and dandy until they were manhandled roughly. Now, every toy of Andy's vow to get themselves and Woody back to Andy and the Attic before he leaves for college.

I grew up with the first 2 movies and it was really fun. I remembered first the most (after watching it like, 20 times, through illegal means that I'm not proud of now) and the 2nd was forgettable. But now, this one marks as even more memorable due to its dark tone in certain parts of the story.

The plot pacing was, ok frankly. It wasn't as engaging as the other movies, but still ok. The animation was wonderful, the sound was too. Voice cast, as usual fantastic. Props to Michael Keaton, seriously, for being Ken.

Gripes with the movie? I cried like a baby. I said it. But its because you can feel the attachment when the ending comes. I can't spoil it here, but if you did grow up with the toys, it might leave you bawling. I have never cried in a movie hall before, and this broke my record.

But that's not just the only memorable scene. The whole movie, in its covers, actually asks us about how we treat others. For the adults, we could ask what have we done in our lives and what have we left behind (These sort of emotions is what Pixar is best at. Dependency was in Wall-E, Up was about imaginations). For the kids, they are in for a treat as the ending, will be a happy one. But they will be scared in certain scenes when everyone would question the fate of the toys.

Its rare to get movies that makes you question yourself about a whole lot in life. We did have Yasmin Ahmad in the past to do so, and Muallaf will go down probably as an underrated movie that many may not understand the questions. But lets hope that Pixar continues on and on with their movies and the questions that they have given to us. This movie is such a delight that you may want to watch it again and again.

Kyo's score: 10/10. I still love The A-Team more because I'm biased about that. :P

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Sony E3 2010 Press Conference: Kyo's View

I slept during this, but managed to read all about it. And thank God Sony has good things in store for everyone!

Starting the conference was...3D for the PS3! And yeah, the whole auditorium saw KZ3 in 3D, but sadly not everyone else outside. But hey, its ok. Some games like Super Stardust HD and Wipeout will be available in 3D, and that was just the start of things.

Very excited on how Sly Cooper's Collection will be available in 3D for the PS3. Man, 3 games in 1, please tell us it'll be cheap...

And then, Playstation Move. Not so impressive if you ask me, but more details need to be shown. Good thing is, you don't see Move copying what Nintendo has and is focusing on new titles (unlike the jackass who did).

Finally, there's Kevin Butler. LONG LIVE KEVIN BUTLER!!! (The actor really. Thank you God for giving Sony some sense to bring in the big man who gave us all a character that we could laugh and love).

We did get a peek at Medal of Honor, which looked nice. And then, Sony pulled off the shocking thing, which was Portal 2. Well, the guy hates the PS3, but I guess he got spiritual enlightenment. :P

So, 3 conferences from the 3 giants are out. My verdict? The clear winners were Sony and Nintendo. Both at a tie. The reason, they both presented new technology for the masses (3D PS3 games, and movies later, 3DS) and some very great looking games (3DS wins more on this because the support will be immense. 3D FF7 anyone? :P) Well, there's next year Microsoft. Our money's on Move and 3DS. Not Kinect. Sorry.

Nintendo's E3 2010 Press Conference: Kyo's View

WOW. What a show. Staying up til 1.30am was great! Because this year, Nintendo did not disappoint at all!

Opening the show we have The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, with Motion Plus support. Asking yourselves to hold a nunchunk like a real shield is a nice tough, but seeing your sword go with you is even better.

And the momentum continued. Totally surprised with Goldeneye 007, Kirby's Epic Yarn (which is not only cute but very creative), Donkey Kong Country Return (Side scroll me in 3D) and Golden Sun Dark Dawn just to name a few (DID YOU SEE THAT BATTLE SEQUENCE???).

And then, there's the 3DS.

I urge you not to continue reading my blog and go to It will explain the console better. I'm outta here to save money for a 3DS!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Microsoft's E3 Press Con 2010: Kyo's View

My my. 2009 was great for Microsoft in terms of the press con battle. You've got the Beatles coming over, you got previews of nice games, and you've got Hideo Kojima coming in to preview MGS Rising.

How was 2010?


Yes, I got my COD Black Ops. Gameplay was nice. Yes I have my GEoW 3, which was also great. Yes I've got MGS Rising's teaser with a little bit of gameplay and Raiden sucking juice from some robot's spine. Yes I've got Halo Reach and Fable 3 making appearances.

And yes I have Xbox Kinect and the redigned 360 hardware.

That's it. And to top off last year's performance, they gave away free 360s. And yes, audiences love free stuff.

So Microsoft leveraged highly on Core games first, and then the casual side of games. Now, Microsoft, i need you to be more innovative rather than giving me rip offs of other consoles. Dance Central? If you have more hits than Just Dance then bring it. Kinect Sports? Urgh, why? Kinectimals? Sigh...

Being in a Ferrari, yeah that sounds like a fresh take. So, GT5? When are you going to show what's in a Ferrari then?

I was really hoping for new announcements. Or at least surprises. But, no. Now, lets hope that the other press cons can deliver. Beginning with, NINTENDO.

The Karate Kid: Movie Review

When Pat Morita taught audiences how to "Wax on, Wax Off", people started guessing what other things you can do in daily life that is similar to karate. Well, why not try picking up a jacket instead? Its easier, and becomes the new lesson for the new remake of the Karate Kid.

The plot is similar to the first movie, but different cast and setting. There's Dre Parker (Jaden Smith) who moves to another country (contrary to another city in the original), and gets bullied by trying to make friends with another girl. When things get worst, the maintenance man, Mr. Han (Jackie Chan) comes to the rescue, with Dre having to agree to enter a tournament to beat the bully.

One of the issues audiences had was the name of the movie. Most would have complained that it should have been the Kung Fu Kid. But to be frank, who would have known the Kung Fu Kid, rather than the Karate Kid? Its better for the production to have leveraged on the old name, since it got people talking. haha.

The plot, is similar until the end. But the shots the movie was filmed at, FANTASTIC. The crew should cherish the fact they got to shoot this at the Great Wall. That one needs you to pull off a whole lot of strings just to be up there. Location and set pieces who carefully chosen and they look great.

But to me, that was the only good part from the movie. Everything else, is well, a 21st century remake. And that's about it. It does get draggy in the first part (Shocked to learn it was for 2 hours and 20 minutes), but works out the pacing at the end. I do however recommend you watching this movie if you want that nostalgia feeling. Because in this movie, everything ends happily ever after. And yeah, the action is nice too.

Kyo says: 7 out of 10. Mainly for the action and the stunt teams.

Friday, June 11, 2010

The A-Team : Movie Review

You gotta love it when a plan comes together. Of course this coming from a fan who has chased the series since he was still in Primary (Thank you TV2 for the fond memories of reruns), you'd be thinking I'll be biased. Well, on a biased point, GO WATCH THE MOVIE. For an unbiased one, read below.
The A-Team, an elite crack commando unit escaped from a maximum security prison for a crime they didn't commit. The best part, is that Joe Carnahan (director) decided to change certain settings. It used to be Vietnam War vets. Now they are just war vets currently in Iraq. And yes, they were framed and sent to prison. Escaping it, now they want payback and clean records. And yes, it definitely gets better from there.
It is truly nonstop action from start to finish, with little joke fillers (That will crack you wide open) to add in the middle of the actions scenes. The rush is so great that when you decide to look at your watch you realize its almost over, and you'll hate that, because the movie leaves you begging for more.
While the plot is, how shall I put it, simple? Yet you might get frustrated on the abundance of loopholes on how efficient Hannibal (Liam Neeson) can be (This however, was explained in the prison scene in the early of the show). But I can think that you might not care on how efficient Hannibal might be. You just know and love it when a grand scheme of plans come together.
The shots taken however, were a little messy sadly. It could have been clearer. The sound and effects, FANTASTICO! But I would say that special effects feels a little overly used in this movie. Action scenes, well, if you've watched Smokin' Aces, expect that to be 5 times crazier.
Now comes the characters, while everyone was great (be reminded, never to piss off an MMA fighter), I believe Sharlto Copley stood out the most as Howling Mad Murdoch. From the moment you see him at the Psych hospital til the very end, you will love him. Bradley Cooper works very well as Faceman, remaining very faithful to the original. Liam Neeson was always fantastic to watch with. Quinton "Rampage" Jackson, hats off to you on being a milder BA. But that's alright.
If you think the trailer gave you everything to watch about The A-Team, boy you would be DAMN WRONG. Go watch it, because I was proven wrong. I thought I had the story nailed down to me after watching the trailer 14 times (i counted), but DAMN!
Now, all good praises however do come to an end. There is that abundance of loopholes (Maybe it was just to be faithful to the series in someway), messy scenes, this being not-your-daddy's-A-Team (expect mild language and sexual scenes), and uninteresting bad guys that you would be confused to like or hate. So in some ways, you won't this perfect.
All in all, if you're a fan, you'll love it! If you're an action movie goer, you'll love it too. But if you're looking for a deep story, sorry, you would get dissapointed.
Kyo's Flames: 8 out of 10. My best movie for the year. Sorry Kick-Ass!