Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Movie Trailer Review: ONLY GOD FORGIVES

"Wanna Fight?"

Those simple lines of dialogue spew innocently and chillingly from Ryan Gostling in his second collaboration with Director Nicolas Winding Refn. In 2011, mainstream audiences were widely introduced to Refn with DRIVE, in which Ryan Gostling plays a stunt driver, who, with a vast knowledge of cars moonlights as a professional escape route for criminals, thief's, and would be bad guys. You know the story; if you don't here's a taste.

Drive was a hit with critics and audiences alike and now the duo of Gosling and Refn are a bonafide hit! This brings us to their second collaboration: Only God Forgives, feast your eyes.

The two words that come to mind after watching this are "violent fairytale". The trailer for Only God Forgives is, emotionally, colorfully, and with the few lines of dialogue it let's go, setting us up for potentially one of the most unique revenge tales of which I am completely on board for. Director Nicolas Winding Refn and his muse Gosling unfortunately received boos and scathing reviews from this year's Cannes attendees.  However, negative reviews aside the sort of detached feel I get from this trailer really has me amped up for it.

Gosling plays Julian, a respected figure in the criminal underworld of Bangkok, runs a Thai Boxing club and smuggling ring with his brother Billy. Billy is suddenly murdered and their crime family matriarch, Crystal arrives from London to bring back the body. When she forces Julian to settle the score with his brother's killers, Julian finds himself in the ultimate showdown.

While watching this trailer I was struck with the thought: if Bruce Lee were alive today or his son Brandon; would this be something up their alley? Right?

The color palette here is balls out amazing, it adds another layer to the emotion of the trailer. Red's, purples, neon lights make it feel like some fucked up version of OZ.  The half covered faces in shadows really make you aware to the fact that that our hero could be or is just as evil as our villain. So who are you really rooting for? The motivation or lack thereof of each character in this trailer pushes to the limit wether or not we do or care for anyone one here. Bold yes, but it could also mean a dull flick at the same time. Here's hoping its balanced well. The music again is done by Cliff Martinez and is childish, yet creepy and the cut aways to some of the violence happening here are gruesome. On a technical scale this is truly a master at work for that I'm sure I will be grateful to fork over some cash.

Now, will you like it? I'll be honest with you, Refn's films; Pusher, Valhalla Rising, Bronson, and Drive all are very very different, like crazily different. So I would say see all those movies, but at the same time nothing expect for a uniqueness of his style of change will stay the same.  This is definitely a guy who loves sub-text; the dialogue underneath the dialogue. It's not for everyone I get it but give it a shot. There are some awesome revenge movies a float in cinema, even if you end up hating this movie the fact that you'll be talking about it means its done its job. We need more movies like that.

I want to see this movie, I am looking forward to it. But in all honesty part of of me is wondering if I'll enjoy it more if I completely hate it. Odd I know, but the mind plays funny tricks. The movie also co-stars Kristin Scott Thomas. Wether your a fan of conventional revenge or just really wacky fucked up revenge; this is definitely going to fall some where in there.

I encourage you all to meet the devil in theaters July 19, 2013.


Monday, June 10, 2013

MAN OF STEEL. (An Emotional) Trailer Review.

What can be said that hasn't already been said about this beautiful 3 minutes. In my mind Man of Steel is by far one of the most anticipated movies of this summer. Yes, we've gotten Iron Man 3; Marvel's proven their worth in building a universe. Mr. Abrams has solidified himself as a summer blockbuster pop corn movie auteur with his long awaited sequel Star Trek Into Darkness and I'm sure will continue that track record with his next film Star Wars VII (fingers crossed). Fast & Furious 6 proved that street racers can threaten NATO generals, drive fast cars, and we love them for it!

But in 4 days we get to see the story connected to these images and inspiring words. Take a minute and watch the trailer if you haven't already.

Tell me you don't have a heart wrenching knot in your stomach after that?!

Last July, yes that's right in 2012! nearly a year a go! when the first teaser trailer for this movie came out I wrote a little ditty on it it. Take a read if you if you like.  My review could very well be one of "ohhh how cool was this and how cool was that!!" talk, but oh no, this is not the review you signed for.

The opening is powerful; a great war or battle is happening on Kypton (which for those of you who don't know, this is Superman's home world). Jor-El played by Russell Crowe speaks to his son for the last time. A father says good bye to his reason for living. A father makes the ultimate sacrifice. This small opening challenged me with the question of what I would be willing to do to save my son. The climax of this opening is seeing the pod fly to earth and our journey begins.

When it comes to movies trailers these days are they viciously plagued with 2 minute summaries of that particular movie and leave nothing for you to grasp on to when you actually see it in theaters. Its that, or it gives away all the good parts, best lines and then your left with cinematic blue balls! That being said I argue that this trailer which is long for most, it runs 3:45, sprinkles your cornea's with beautiful imagery, action and non action a like. But the dialogue lets you know that Kal-El. Clark Kent. Superman. Is an alien from another planet and we will challenge you with the emotional toll that takes on a young boy who grows to a man, fearful of what he is capable of. It gives you everything but also nothing at all.

This is handled beautifully when Jonathan Kent, Clark's human father tells him that he is the answer to "are we alone in the universe"; to which a young Clark reply's "Can't I just keep pretending I'm your son?" GODDAMN I WANTED TO CRY RIGHT THEN AND THERE. This small exchange between father and son is what I believe is at the heart of this movie and its what we as film goer's yearn for in our movies. Or at least I do. I want to be wowed and in awe of action, spectacle and things that go boom! But all that accounts for nothing if you, yourself cannot relate to the character, the man, and what he is going through.

We've all felt like an "alien" in our own right. Not accepted. Not included. Not seen. But just as the elder Kent tells Clark, "I have to believe that you were sent here for a reason", I am more convinced in my purpose here on this planet, I was sent here for a reason and so were you, who are reading this now. Yes, at its core you could call this a comic book movie, but I am going to say that this is a human movie. Even if you are not a fan of movies like this, I challenge you to see this movie, actually I take that back, experience it, allow yourself to be taken on an emotional journey that will hopefully change and make you think about life in a different way. This movie is for the outcasts, this movie is for our modern day heroes, and people like me, you and everyone in between.

It's no surprise that this trailer affected me deeply. I am hoping that this movie delivers on all cylinders and with this trailer my hopes are solidified. Please leave your comments below.

Man of Steel opens June 14, 2013.


Sunday, February 3, 2013


Who would have though that we'd be at SIX! Writer Chris Morgan, whose written these movies since Toyko Drift has pleasantly surprised audiences refreshing this series that was once about street racing.

Director Justin Lin returns with great stunt work and series regulars Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster, Dwayne Johnson, Chris "Ludacris" Bridges, Tyrese Gibson, Sung Kang, Gal Gadot, and new additions Luke Evans, Gina Carino, and of course...DRUM ROLL PLEASE; MICHELLE RODRIGUEZ IS BACK!

All you need to know is that this movie comes out May 24th, 2013. VROOOMMM!!! (speeds away)

Super Bowl Spots: OZ the Great and Powerful

Disney sadly is still not giving to much more away in this spot. I say sadly because the trailers so far haven't really convinced me of going to see this. However I do love me some Franco, here's hoping theres a story in here and not just Sam Raimi doing a Tim Burton version of this re-imaginiation.

The film stars James Franco, Mila Kunis, Michelle Williams, Bruce Campbell and Rachel Weisz and will be out March 8th 2013.

Super Bowl Spots: THE LONE RANGER

Director Gore Verbinski channels the ghosts of the old west on July 3rd, 2013 with Armie Hammer, Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, William Fichtner, Barry Pepper, and Tom Wilkinson.


The Crew of the Starship Enterprise Returns May 17th, 2013.

The film stars Chris Pine, Zachary Qunito, Zoe Saldana, Anton Yehlchin, John Cho, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, Bruce Greenwood, Alive Eve, and Benedict Cumberbatch

Thursday, January 24, 2013



In all honesty, I'm all for movie adaptions on fairytales and fables but now things are just getting a little out of control.  In 2012 and now in the beginning of 2013 the trend now seems to be superhero movies and adaptions of classic fairytales which one could argue run a fine line of being similar.  However the recent string of fairytale adaptions i.e. Red Riding Hood, Mirror Mirror, Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, Beastly have all been really terrible adaptions on material that could haved been RE-TOLD, as these stories always are, through a unique vision. However studios just seem to want to get the hottest young star at the moment, put together the simplest story possible, make sure the main male lead takes his shirt off and...."yea let's post convert in 3D".

Originality gone.

But let's get back to this "fairy-fail".  The pitch for this movie is that Hansel and Gretel, who after killing the evil witch that tried to kill and eat them, now have a taste for blood and become witch hunters. Jeremy Renner stars as Hansel who as an actor has this swagger about him that makes even his most minor character very memorable. I look forward to his return as Hawkeye in the Marvel universe and The Avengers 2 in 2015. I don't see this being that much of a breakout role for him, his roles in The Town the most recent Mission Impossible are fair better game.  Gemma Arterton who plays his sister Gretel on the other hand I'm not a big fan of, she's always cast as these very weak and dainty princesses and annoying damsels and she's just terrible at them! It looks like this movie shows her as the more aggressive of the sibling pair, so it might be interesting to see what she can do with this "ballsy" female character.

The supporting cast include character Peter Stormare whose been in movies like Bad Boys 2, Jurassic Park 2, and Minority Report. He also played a key inmate in the prison drama Prison Break on Fox.   Famke Janssen rounds out the supporting cast, she is Jean Grey in the X-Men movies and has also been in the James Bond movie Goldeneye, and the Liam Nesson vehicle Taken.

The trailer itself looks very action packed and with the inclusion of 3D those close ups of guns cocking and shooting will most definitely wear-out their welcome.  With not a lot of story, a guarantee of witches being killed and some present day one liners, I feel like this movie will just land flat. This material and any fairy material is always ripe for a modern day take and its very disappointing that the opportunity to take the characters and dark themes of these stories somewhere new and unique has been passed up for "turn off your brain" movie with absolutely no substance.

My suggestion is get a better taste of revisionist fairytale, tales with Guillermo Del Toro's Pan's Labyrnith and Bill Willingham's graphic novel series Fables.

Leave this movie alone, but if you really have to see it, do a matinee. Please, do a matinee

Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters begin the hunt on January 25th, 2013