Game of Thrones: Season Two (2012)


Any Man Dies With a Clean Sword, I’ll Rape His Fucking Corpse!

Game of Thrones: Season Two (2012)It stood to reason that I put out my review for Season Two of Game of Thrones a week away from my review for Season One since that is about the time it took me to finish both of them.  That may come as a bit of a spoiler to the eventual review of this season, but I don’t care.  I have a review to write and this is the thing that I’ve watched.  So let’s jump right into my review for Game of Thrones: Season 2, based on the novels by George R. R. Martin, and starring Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, Maisie Williams, Sibel Kekilli, Michelle Fairley, Emilia Clarke, Aiden Gillen, Kit Harington, Alfie Allen, Jerome Flynn, Iain Glen, Charles Dance, Isaac Hempstead-Wright, Sophie Turner, Jack Gleeson, Stephen Dillane, Liam Cunningham, Richard Madden, John Bradley, Conleth Hill, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Gwendoline Christie, Rory McCann, and Carice van Houten.

Robb Stark (Richard Madden) continues his campaign against King Joffrey Baratheon (Jack Gleeson).  He sends Theon Greyjoy (Alfie Allen) to gain the support of his father, Balon (Patrick Malahide), and sends his mother Catelyn (Michelle Fairley) to seek help from Renly Baratheon (Gethin Anthony), who is fighting with his brother Stannis (Stephen Dillane) over who has claim on the throne.  Stannis has sex with the priestess Melisandre (Carice van Houten) when she promises to give him a son, which turns out to be a shadow creature that kills Renly, causing Catelyn to flee with Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie).  Robb tries to trade Jamie Lannister (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) for Sansa (Sophie Turner) and Arya (Maisie Williams) Stark.  And then Stannis sails against the King.  Also, Arya is posing as a boy while travelling back to Winterfell, gets taken hostage and taken into the house of Tywin Lannister (Charles Dance).  And, across the ocean, Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) is trying to lead her people across a desert and they almost die before they finally reach the town of Qarth, where shit is also going down.

Here’s something crazy: the writers of this movie didn’t go on some crazy drug binge and decide to start ignoring the excellent material they were working with.  Seriously.  After two seasons of this show I’ve almost broken down and decided that I should check out these books.  And I hate reading!  But I’ll probably just wait until the DVD’s come out.  The second season was just as good as the first, and I refuse to decide which is better.  That’s not necessary for a review, right?  I would say that, in my opinion, this season didn’t have as much by way of emotionally impactful moments as the first season had.  Ned Stark was beheaded in front of his family in the first season.  This season didn’t have that.  It didn’t have Khal Drogo dying.  It had some great moments, but maybe I’m not thinking of them as much because the battle in episode nine was so epic it overshadowed the rest of them.  It was badass.  Disembowelments, ships exploding in green fire, and a feel of the battle of Helm’s Deep mixed with storming the beaches at Normandy.  The only part I took issue with was not really clearly understanding what happened to Dinklage at the end of it.  He seemed like he was fatally sliced in the face.  It didn’t really look like a fatal wound, but they tried to act like he might have died from it, probably for the cliffhanger.  But at first I thought they were going for one of those slow reveals where the top of his head slid off because the cut when all the way through his head.  There were other great moments in the story, like the tense part where Arya was trying to covertly serve drinks to Tywin Lannister and Petyr Baelish and not get recognized by Petyr.  There were also little parts that I didn’t care for.  The only one I can currently think of is the fact that episode five had two separate occasions where “You can’t avenge him when you’re dead” worked to convince people.

The performances are still fantastic.  They’re also the same people, so it’s not very surprising.  One thing I still find weird about Game of Thrones so far is that all I ever heard about the series before I started watching was how awesome Khaleesi was.  First off, her name isn’t Khaleesi like everyone made it seem like it was.  It’s Daenerys.  Emilia Clarke is sexy and great in the show, but she hasn’t made that much of an impact.  There was kind of a drought of her through most of this season, and the parts she was in weren’t always that interesting.  Wandering around a desert, then almost marrying a black man, then getting her pets kidnapped by the lead singer of REM, then they light that guy on fire and it’s the end of the world and he knows it.  But he feels fine.  She doesn’t even have much impact on the story in general, which is exemplified by the fact that she’s the only big character on the other side of the ocean.  The rest of the world in this show doesn’t even know she exists yet.  My favorite character in the series remains Maisie Williams as Arya.  I don’t know why, but I like this kid’s moxie.  And I like all the characters that are nice to her, like Tom Wlaschiha as Jaqen H’ghar.  I also think he reminds me of Gambit.  Plus he was the one that answered the question I kept asking early on: Why does no one realize Arya is a girl?  Why does no one say to Arya as she’s pretending to be a boy, “Little boy, you seem to be developing breasts.”  But then Jaqen and Tywin Lannister both figure it out, so maybe she just surrounded herself with stupid people.  I like Rory McCann as Sandor “The Hound” Clegane more in this season as well, mainly because of the part where he rescued Sansa from getting raped.  It was brutal and badass.  But later, I started thinking about how highly inconvenient it would be for a warrior like him to be afraid of fire when there would be so much of it in a typical battle in this time.  And the rescue situation started making me mad at Sophie Turner’s Sansa.  Why doesn’t she escape with The Hound?!  What kind of stupid Stockholm Syndrome is she developing that makes her stick around this castle?!  Lena Headey still brings it as Cersei Lannister in this season, but I liked her most when she was getting drunk during the big battle, and especially her line about a woman’s best weapon being between her legs.  They introduced two new characters in this season that I liked as well.  Natalie Dormer had one hell of a smokin’ hot body, but looked goofy wearing that waffle cone dress she wore (See picture below left).  And there was also Gwendoline Christie as Brienne of Tarth or, as I called her, Lady Tilda of Swinton (See picture below right).

Margaery Tyrell (Natalie Dormer) Waffle Cone DressBrienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie) Tilda of Swinton

Season Two of Game of Thrones was just as awesome as the first.  Not as emotionally substantial as the first, but it makes up for it with a fantastic battle in episode nine.  All of the performances are still top of the line.  Season Two became yet another overly expensive TV series I’ll have to buy on BluRay, and I recommend you all do the same.  Can’t wait for Season Three to hit the shelves.  Game of Thrones: Season Two gets “I much like my head.  I don’t want to see it removed just yet” out of “Those are brave men knocking at our door.  Let’s go kill them!”

WATCH REVIEWS HERE!  YouTube  OTHER JOKES HERE!  Twitter  BE A FAN HERE!  Facebook  If you like these reviews so much, spread the word.  Keep me motivated!  Also, if you like them so much, why don’t you marry them?!

Alien3 (1992)


This is Rumor Control.  Here Are the Facts.

As I come towards the end of my reviews of the Alien series proper, I’ve been trying to remember if my dim recollection of the Alien series matches what I’ve been seeing in the scores on Rotten Tomatoes.  So far they’ve been spot on as they’ve rated Alien as awesome and Aliens as even better.  But when they come into Alien3 and Alien Resurrection, the scores drop below the 50% margin.  I don’t really remember hating the last two movies, though they do pale in comparison to the first two.  So let’s see how my recollection matches up to reality in my review of Alien3, written by David Glier, Walter Hill, and Larry Ferguson, directed by David Fincher, and starring Sigourney Weaver, Charles Dance, Charles S. Dutton, Brian Glover, Ralph Brown, Paul McGann, Danny Webb, Lance Henriksen, Pete Postlethwaite, Niall Buggy, Tom Woodruff Jr., Peter Guinness, and Holt McCallany.

On the Colonial Marine spaceship called the Sulaco, a movie writer unzips his fly and pisses right on everything we loved about Aliens, simultaneously killing Newt, Bishop, and Hicks before the opening credits have even stopped rolling.  The remaining survivor, Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver), crash lands on the prison planet of Fiorina ‘ Fury’ 161, where she’s rescued by the prison’s doctor, Clemens (Charles Dance).  The prisoners – particularly their religious leader Dillon (Charles S. Dutton) and the warden Harold Andrews (Brian Glover) – don’t like Ripley’s presence because it disrupts the calm of the all-male prison community, so the warden contacts the Weyland-Yutani Corporation, that quickly sends a vessel out to retrieve her.  Their calm is further disrupted when the Xenomorph eggs that were hidden aboard the Sulaco hatch, laying it’s egg in an ox and breeding a bull alien that starts wreaking havoc on the prisoners.

The way the title is usually written for this movie, they seem to be implying that this movie is Alien to the power of three, but is it?  Nope!  But is it that bad?  No, not really.  It has its problems, but it’s good enough for what it is.  It’s really got two main things working against it.  First, Alien and Aliens were amazing, making this one that much worse by comparison.  Second, not only was it worse than Aliens, but it destroyed some of what we liked about Aliens in the opening credits.  I’m pretty sure we all got to like Newt, Hicks, and Bishop, but then you killed them all off right away because you wanted to make a new movie and not pay them.  Or they didn’t want to come back.  Or whatever.  Maybe it was just as simple as their whole idea being the all-male prison colony and it not really being super appropriate to have a 10-year-old girl running around.  Whatever it was, it wasn’t really appreciated.  The only thing that could make it worse is if they killed Ripley … oh …  Another thing that could be considered a problem with this movie is the fact that the final third of the movie is just a bunch of people running around corridors, filmed in nauseating handheld cameras.  Other than that, it’s an okay movie.  I did like that the Xenomorph finally started living up to its name by taking on a different form because it had a different host, and the Bull Alien mostly looked pretty cool, but the CG available to them was pretty consistently awful.  The lighting never matched up and the creature stuck out like a sore thumb.  One thing I’ll give the movie credit for is that it has one of the most iconic scenes of the Alien series in it.  I think one of the first images that comes to mind when I think about the Alien series is the image of a bald-headed Ripley with the Xenomorph right next to her head, extending his second mouth, and that happens in this movie.

I don’t have a whole lot to say about the performances in this movie.  In some parts, Sigourney Weaver took Ripley to further levels of badassness in this movie, but I thought a couple of moments were just bitchy.  Take, for instance, when she decides she’s just going to walk around with the prisoners.  Sure, that shows that she’s badass because she’s not afraid of them, but the other half of that is her being a bitch.  The prisoners didn’t want her around because of the temptation.  They knew they were bad men and didn’t want to disrupt their harmony, but she’s going around flaunting herself to fuck with them.  Everyone else did their parts very well and are not to blame for the failings of this movie.

Alien 3 might have been a good movie if they just hadn’t named it “Alien”.  It brings down the quality ratio of the series pretty harshly because it just can’t live up to its predecessors.  The story would be more enjoyable if they didn’t choose to kill off pretty much all of our favorite characters, the design of the new Xenomorph was pretty great but lacked the CGI to display it, and the performances were good, but couldn’t really redeem it.  I still would say it’s worth a watch just because it’s a continuation of Ripley’s story, but I doubt it will find too much favor with Alien fans.  Alien3 gets “Don’t be afraid.  I’m part of the family” out of “But we tolerate anybody.  Even the intolerable.”

Let’s get these reviews more attention, people.  Post reviews on your webpages, tell your friends, do some of them crazy Pinterest nonsense.  Whatever you can do to help my reviews get more attention would be greatly appreciated.  You can also add me on FaceBook (Robert T. Bicket) and Twitter (iSizzle).  Don’t forget to leave me some comments.  Your opinions and constructive criticisms are always appreciated.

Underworld: Awakening (2012)


My Heart is Not Cold.  It’s Broken

It’s taken us a long time to get to this point.  At the time of the writing of this review, it’s been almost a week since I saw today’s movie.  I had prepared for my vacation by readying a week of reviews for you, my audience.  While on my vacation, I saw two movies in the theaters.  Today’s movie, to me, required that I review three movies before this one could come out.  And now I’m beginning to wonder if I’ll remember this movie well enough to write a review about it.  Well, I took a great deal of notes during the movie, so we’ll find out.  And, now that we’re all caught up with the story of these movies, and all caught up with the story of me reviewing this movie, I present to you my review of Underworld: Awakening, written by Allison Burnett and Kevin Grevioux, directed by Mans Marlind and Bjorn Stein, and (back in beautiful, skintight glory) Kate Beckinsale, as well as India Eisley, Stephen Rea, Theo James, Michael Ealy, Charles Dance, Kris Holden-Ried, and Sandrine Holt.

Six months after the events of Underworld: Evolution, humans have decided that they are not getting enough action in this vampire/werewolf war, so they start killing both of them.  Selene (Kate Beckinsale) decides that she does not enjoy being killed that much, so she takes her boyfriend/hybrid Michael Corvin (Scott Speedman?) to get the Hell out of Dodge.  The humans have other ideas.  They attack them at the docks and both are seemingly killed.  Instead of being dead, they wanted to make a movie longer than 5 minutes.  Something called “Subject 2” releases Selene from a cryo-prison, but does not stick around long enough to show her how to use the three seashells.  Following her natural curiosity, Selene eventually finds out that Subject 2 is a hybrid, much like Michael, and is also a little girl, much like Michael.  This little girl, Eve (India Eisley), is apparently, and inexplicably, the child of Selene and Michael.  Also, the scientists that were holding them want them back, so they have that to worry about too.

I kinda dug this movie.  The story is nothing to write home about, and probably wasn’t anything that really needed to be written down in the first place, but it was and it was fine.  It seemed like a lot of the story of the movie was decided on based strictly on the fact that Scott Speedman wasn’t going to be back.  This caused them to do as much as possible to keep him out of the story but possibly still alive so that he could still be a driving factor of the movie.  At first he’s alive, then he might be dead.  Then Selene is seeing visions through someone’s eyes and she’s all “Oh, he might be alive.”  Then she finds out it’s their daughter and she’s like “Oh, he might not be alive.”  Then there’s a facility where they were being held, and he might be alive again.  They decided to replace him with a little girl, and if I hadn’t just watched the first three movies, I wouldn’t have known the difference.  Parts of this movie seemed to just serve to waste time.  Somewhere in the middle, they’re in a vampire coven and the elder doesn’t like Selene and Eve being there.  He makes that clear from the start, but they still decide to randomly throw in a scene of the elder stopping Eve in the hallway and saying “I know what you are and I don’t want you here.”  Complete waste of our time as an audience.  I imagine that the real reason anyone actually watched this movie would be the action, and it’s pretty damned solid in that category.  The movie is pretty solid action for the first and the last thirds of the movie, wasting very little time on story.  The middle third is probably a little story heavy and action light, so you may get bored around that point.  But you should only go into these movies looking for some fun action anyway, so you get that, and should be happy with it.  There are some really good graphics to be found in this movie, but at least one glaring problem: the little hybrid girl.  It could’ve been done creepy, but it ended up just looking like a vaguely creepy goth girl.  She did the occasional badass thing, like ripping a werewolf in half, but the look never allowed me to be won over.  I got confused when the gigantic werewolf showed up, wondering if that was going to end up being a sumo wrestler or Shaquille O’Neal turned Lycan, but it was explained to me later.  Later in the movie, when Selene shoulder tackles a van onto it’s side, I wrote “Fuck yeah!” in my notes immediately.  It made me think about that story about a human mother being able to lift a bus to save her child, then I started wondering what that meant Selene would be able to do to save her child.  There’s the answer.  And if you also wondered what the inside of a throat looks like, you can have that question answered here as well.

The performances are much as you’ve come to see from the previous encounters with these characters.  Kate Beckinsale is still cold as ice as Selene, but has a few moments where you feel bad for her because she’s struggling to be able to connect with her daughter while simultaneously being a badass.  And she does indeed pull badass off, like few other women can.  Also, let’s face it, most of us guys watched these movies to see her running around in skintight leather.  Many worse things have been captured on film than Kate Beckinsale wearing skintight leather, filmed from behind.  Of course, they kind of shit on that in a couple of places by making her put on a trenchcoat.  Not cool, guys!  India Eisley did well enough, and it wasn’t her fault that the effects they used for her never really worked.  The rest of the cast never really did anything to grab my attention.  They didn’t do anything to bog down the movie, but never really elevated it either.  The biggest problem I had with the cast was Scott Speedman.  What’s this guy doing that he can’t come back for the movie?  Being some secondary part in a Rachel McAdams/Channing Tatum joint, that’s what.  Fuck that noise!  You could’ve at least been a main character in a movie that tends to make a good deal of money and has a strong cult following.  Instead you’re in The Vow, that didn’t even crack 30% on Rotten Tomatoes.  Unless you’re fucking Rachel McAdams, I am not down with that decision at all.

We have finally reached the end of the Underworld, at least for now.  Instead of finding Satan frozen in ice as Dante did, we find a solid action flick that is worth the price of admission.  The story won’t really shock you or stick with you in any meaningful way, but there is definitely some action worth seeing in this flick.  When it comes out, I’ll feel comfortable purchasing the tetralogy on BluRay.  Before that time comes, I’m comfortable saying you’ll find this to be a pretty fun time at the theaters.  Underworld: Awakening gets “This is a new war and it’s only beginning” out of “Consider us even.”

Hey, peeps. Why not rate and comment on this as a favor to good ole Robert, eh? And tell your friends! Let’s make me famous!