Jurassic Park (1993)


You’re Implying That a Group Composed Entirely of Female Animals … Will Breed? … Sexy!

The decision to watch today’s movie (and the ensuing remainder of the trilogy) happened because of my recent reviews of the Back to the Future trilogy. It wasn’t me thinking about great trilogies that got me interested, but every one of the Back to the Future movies began with a trailer about the recent BluRay releases of this movie’s trilogy. Then I says to myself that it’s been far too long since the last time I watched this, and their time had come. We get started with the original, Jurassic Park, written by Michael Crichton and David Koepp, directed by Steven Spielberg, and starring Sam Neill, Richard Attenborough, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, Joseph Mazzello, Ariana Richards, Wayne Knight, Martin Ferrero, Samuel L. Jackson, and Bob Peck.

When a park worker is attacked and injured by something at his new park, lawyer Donald Gennaro (Martin Ferrero) tells eccentric billionaire John Hammond (Richard Attenborough) that the investors will pull out unless he gets some experts to sign off on it. Gennaro brings Dr. Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum) and Hammond brings paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant (Sam Neill) and paleobotanist Dr. Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern). They take a helicopter to the park and that’s when they find out the magic Hammond has created: he’s reanimated the dinosaurs! I just spoiled the whole movie for you! And for another spoiler, it turns out that dinosaurs don’t get along with humans. That’s why Jesus killed them all 3000 years ago. Sarah Palin told me so. Anyways, Dennis Nedry (Wayne Knight) makes a move to steal a bunch of dinosaur embryo’s by shutting down the security around the park. Problem is, the above mentioned people are all out on a tour with Hammond’s grandchildren, Tim (Joseph Mazzello) and Lex (Ariana Richards), and the security gates and tour vehicles just simultaneously shut down in front of a Tyrannosaurus cage. I think we may have an idea where this is going. Spoiler alert: Jesus saves them all with his sweet, Jesus-y bisceps.

Have you guys heard of this movie? It’s pretty damned good! The story is fairly simple, but the premise is pretty well thought out and, more importantly, there’s lots of good action. The story of the movie is basically just that people are put into a predicament and need to escape it, but the premise of the movie is much better. Your typical action movie probably wouldn’t put very much thought into how the dinosaurs got there, but this one did. Being cloned from blood stored in the belly (or thorax or whatever they wanna call it) of ancient mosquitoes that are preserved in solidified amber. Then, in order to keep the dinosaurs from breeding and running amok on the island, they are genetically engineered to all be female. Then, to add another wrinkle (that doesn’t actually make any kind of a difference to this movie) they begin to breed because they’ve used some reptile DNA and there are apparently some frogs that can turn tranny when they live in a sausage party. I don’t know if any of these things are true and/or viable, but they worked for me. The action was great. The movie starts off pretty strong when we watch the guy get attacked by the Velociraptor, getting dragged up the side of the cage reminiscent of the girl in Jaws. It slows down for a little while as we meet our characters, but then ramps up the action increasingly once the dinosaurs get involved. The scene when we first meet the T-Rex still holds up as a fantastic scene, and it includes my favorite moment in the movie. It’s when the T-Rex has flipped over the car and is attacking the undercarriage of the car. It bites a tire, which releases air into it’s mouth, making it kind of step back and stare at it like a dog that’s confused when his toy squeaks. And that T-Rex still holds up. Even living in a world of Avatar, that T-Rex still looks great. And when the T-Rex throws down on a couple Velociraptors at the end of the movie, wins, and then roars triumphantly as a banner falls, it’s still pretty awesome. But a couple of things for this movie: why is the entirety of Jurassic Park only able to be accessed through DOS prompts? No one uses that anymore! Also, how are we to get behind Sam Neill and Jeff Goldblum as our heroes when it takes them like 10 minutes of a T-Rex attacking the car with two kids in it to decide they should help? I understand that a T-Rex is intimidating and that little boy was pretty damned annoying, but you gotta do something, man! But the men aren’t the only assholes in this movie. Laura Dern was present for Sam Neill’s whole speech at the beginning of the movie about how Velociraptor’s will look you in the eye as two more attack you from the side, but she chose not to warn Bob Peck that he might be in that exact situation in a few moments. His blood is on your hands now, Dern!

The performances were pretty great in this movie. I always like Sam Neill. That guy’s pretty underrated and never really got the bump in his career that you’d expect this movie to give, even though he was great. The best scene of him was from right in the beginning of the movie when some chubby kid that had somehow gotten onto a dig site starts talking shit about Velociraptors and Sam Neill tells him that great story about how they would kill the shit out of his chubby ass. It gives you pretty much everything you need to know about the character right away. Very knowledgeable and passionate about dinosaurs, but could perhaps use a little bit of work on his ability to deal with kids. Laura Dern didn’t do much for me in this movie. She seemed just a hair above damsel in distress the whole time. She did fine, but not much more. Jeff Goldblum was … well, he was Jeff Goldblum. They just kind of let him talk and take what they wanted to use. He could get a little tedious, but was otherwise fine. Richard Attenborough was good in this movie. He was so happy all the time that he made me think he would probably play a great Santa Clause. The kids were alright too. Joseph Mazzello was a little annoying, but that’s what he was going for. Ariana Richards mainly just screamed a lot.

It’s so nice when you can look back on a movie you watched when you were 10 and enjoy it almost as much, and Jurassic Park does that. This movie holds up like a champ. Good story involving a well thought out and explained premise, and mostly great performances. The directing is Spielberg. That’s equivalent to great. It amazed me most of all that this movie’s graphics were still able to hold up so well, but they definitely do. As does the entire movie, for that matter. I only have them on DVD right now, but it’s just a matter of time before I re-purchase them on BluRay. This movie belongs in any collection, regardless of size. We’ll see if that goes for the rest of the series over the next two days. Jurassic Park gets “I spared no expenses” out of “If the Pirates of the Caribbean breaks down, the pirates don’t eat the tourists.”

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Pulp Fiction (1994)


And You Will Know My Name is the Lord When I Lay My Vengeance Upon Thee.

I sometimes get worried when I start a review after watching a movie that caused me to take almost no notes whatsoever. This usually doesn’t happen when watching a crappy movie because I think of lots of jokes to take down during those; this mainly happens during good movies. What is there to say about a good movie? Well, let’s find out. This movie was suggested by my friend Chris, a young crippled boy who probably submitted his request through the Make A Wish Foundation. Or he posted it on my Facebook page. Either way, this movie is a classic movie, much beloved by many people I’ve spoken to about it. As with most movies with such a pedigree, it took me a while to see it for the first time, but once I had, I loved it and bought it on DVD. When it was requested, I busted out that bad boy and sat down to write what you are presently reading. This movie is Pulp Fiction, written and directed by Quentin Tarantino, and starring John Travolta, Samuel L. Jackson, Uma Thurman, Ving Rhames, Bruce Willis, Tim Roth, Amanda Plummer, Eric Stoltz, Rosanna Arquette, Maria de Medeiros, Harvey Keitel, Peter Greene, Duane Whitaker, Alexis Arquette, Steve Buscemi, Kathy Griffin, Phil LaMarr, and Christopher Walken.

This here is a difficult movie to summarize, and even more without spoilers. So there will be spoilers, but I’m going to try to do this chronologically. Two hit men, Vincent Vega (John Travolta) and Jules Winnfield (Samuel L. Jackson), go to an apartment to pick up a briefcase with mysterious, shiny contents. They kill the people in the apartment and leave with their informant, Marvin (Phil Lamarr). On the drive, Vincent accidentally shoots Marvin in the face. They go to Jules’ associate’s, Jimmy’s (Quentin Tarantino), house to clean up the situation, but his wife, Bonnie, is coming home and they need to get it done by the time she arrives. The Wolf, Winston Wolf (Harvey Keitel), is called in by their boss, Marsellus Wallace (Ving Rhames). He takes care of the situation and Vincent and Jules go to breakfast. Here, they get involved in a hold-up at the restaurant by Ringo (Tim Roth) and Yolanda (Amanda Plummer). Because Jules is reluctant to give up Marsellus’ case, it devolves into a Mexican standoff between the four. Jules defuses the situation and Vincent and Jules take the case back to Marsellus. Here, they see Marsellus paying off boxer, Butch (Bruce Willis), to take a dive in his fight. After turning over the case, Marsellus asks Vincent to take his wife, Mia (Uma Thurman), out for dinner that night to occupy her. He does, they have a nice night of dinner and dancing, and he returns her home. While he’s in the bathroom, Mia finds a baggie of heroin in Vincent’s jacket and snorts it, mistaking it for cocaine. She immediately overdoses and Vincent must rush her over to the house of his drug dealer, Lance (Eric Stoltz), and his girl, Jody (Rosanna Arquette). They are able to revive her by administering an adrenaline shot directly into her heart. Later, Butch does not take the dive in his match. Instead, he kills his opponent in the ring. His intention is to take the money and his girlfriend, Fabienne (Maria de Medeiros), and run away. But Fabienne has forgotten his watch, given to him as a child – along with a disturbing story of a POW camp and anal storage of said watch – by Captain Koons (Christopher Walken), who was in the POW camp with Butch’s father. Butch returns to his apartment for the watch and kills Vincent, who was there looking for Butch. On the way back to Fabienne, Butch sees Marsellus in the street and hits him with his car. Marsellus chases Butch into a pawn shop owned by Maynard (Duane Whitaker), who stops Butch moments from killing Marsellus. Maynard knocks out Butch and Marsellus. They wake up to find themselves tied to chairs with ball gags in their mouth. Maynard called in his buddy, Zed (Peter Greene), and they decide to rape Marsellus. Butch escapes but decides to go back to save Marsellus with a katana. Marsellus tells Butch to never come back to LA, which he happily does with Fabienne.

That is basically the entire movie, condensed to a paragraph. You get a two and a half hour movie out of that by filling it with lots and lots of dialogue. Normally, this would make for an excruciating movie, but this is written by Quentin Tarantino. Much like the oft-mentioned Kevin Smith, Tarantino is an expert at taking scenes where nothing is happening beyond people talking, and that conversation has nothing to do with moving the story along, but make it super compelling so you don’t mind or get bored. The dialogue is definitely the most appealing part to this movie, but that is not to say that the story should not be lauded. Take out all the dialogue and you’d still have a good movie, but not a great one. It’s funny in a lot of parts, dark and violent all over the place, and always intriguing. Though it works in this movie, I’m generally not a fan of the movies being shown out of order. In this movie, it’s fine, but it also makes it a little hard to follow the order of things. But now I’ve written it down in chronological order, so all is well. As with most Tarantino movies, the music is fantastic as well. He loves to throw in those old songs, most of which probably wouldn’t be remembered now were it not for him. Take Miserlou, for example. I like the song, but there is no way I would know that song if it weren’t for this movie.

The acting is pretty much all the way perfect in this movie. John Travolta was a quiet badass who remained calm throughout the greater majority of the movie, even with Bruce Willis pointing a gun at him moments before his death. The only time he lost his shit was when Uma Thurman was dying in front of him, and that was more about getting killed by Marsellus than it was about her death. Samuel L. Jackson was really intimidating at most parts of this movie, more so when he was staring a gun down it’s barrel in the restaurant and when he was quoting the bible at people he was about to kill. “I’m sorry. Did I break your concentration?” Priceless. Uma Thurman was probably as hot as she’s ever been in this movie, and very real as well. I’m not usually one to dig on Uma for whatever reason, but something about that hair do worked for me. Ving Rhames was a great, powerful character in this movie that had that power taken away by a good ass-raping. And he reacts to that much as I assume I would: with a shotgun blast to the rapist’s penis and a threat against anyone who may mention it ever again. I could go through everyone in this movie, but I’ll have the same thing to say about every character from the biggest to the most minor: very real, very good. I think the person that impressed me the most was right in the opening scene of the movie: Amanda Plummer. She comes off first as a sweet lady out to eat with her boyfriend, talking innocently about robbery possibilities. When it’s time to bust out the guns and rob the joint, she is frightening as hell. And later, when Roth has a gun pointed at him, her tough persona cracks drastically as she is terrified she’s about to lose her man to this endeavor.

No surprises here, people. If you’re looking to be shocked by my reviews, keep walking. But I can’t hate on every movie, people. I like stuff too! WHY DON’T YOU GET OFF MY BACK!?! …Sorry. Anyways, great story, fantastic dialogue, and amazing performances land this movie firmly in position for you to own it. Everyone either does or should. So go get it or watch it. Pulp Fiction gets “I want that trophy, so dance good” out of “I don’t need you to tell me how fucking good my coffee is.”

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Deep Blue Sea (1999)


A Mother Fucking Shark Ate Me!

I have heard of this movie many times before, but never decided I should see it.  And that just proves that I have made smart decisions in life.  But, unlike watching The Mothman Prophecies, I enjoyed watching this movie, because I loves me some good joke fodder.  And this movie is one of the best examples of joke fodder movies I can think of.  So let’s dive right in (yeah, puns) to the Deep Blue Sea, written by Talley Griffith and directed by Renny Harlin, and it stars Thomas Jane, Saffron Burrows, mothafuckin Samuel L. Jackson, LL Cool J, Michael Rapaport, Jacqueline McKenzie, and Stellan Skarsgard.

Dr. Susan McAlester (Saffron Burrows) goes to a meeting to defend her controversial Alzheimer’s treatment to some white guy and Russell Franklin (Samuel L. Jackson).  Her empassioned speech makes them give her another chance, but Franklin decides to go with her back to her underwater facility, Aquatica, to check on her progress.  Upon their arrival, he meets the “shark wrangler”, Carter Blake (Thomas Jane), and we find out that their Alzheimer’s tests are being conducted on sharks.  They pull one of the sharks up to test if it’s brain fluids and see if their testing is working, and that’s when shit goes down.  First, that mother fucker bites the arm off of Jim Whitlock (Stellan Skarsgard).  McAlester sets the shark free as Blake is about to shoot it and they get Whitlock up to the surface to be taken to safety by helicopter.  Nuh uh, Skarsgard.  You got on God’s bad side today!  The gear sticks on the thing that’s lifting him and he plummets into the water while tied to a gurney, so he’s surely drowning.  The crew descends back into the facility for the Real World confessional, where McAlester admits that the testing has made the sharks smarter, but I think they need a little proof.  And that’s when they see it: Whitlock, still strapped to the gurney, is being kept alive by the respirator they paramedics put him on.  How lucky for him!  Oh wait … nope.  He’s in the mouth of one of the sharks.  And he’s swimming with Whitlock face first towards the glass.  The team escapes the room and start making their way towards the surface.  Also, there’s a cool called Preacher who has a bird that hangs out with him (because ladies love cool James), and he also has to make his way to the surface and meet up with the team.

It should come as no surprise that this isn’t what I’d call a “good” movie.  What I will call it is a “fun” movie.  Though I’m confident it wasn’t intentional on the writer’s part, I laughed numerous times in this movie.  The premise itself is so absurd that I got a good laugh out of it.  Why do we decide to test things that will make something smarter on creatures we REALLY don’t want to be smarter?  Why not sloths or penguins?  Oh no!  We go with apes and sharks.  At least the Planet of the Apes makes sense because apes are the closest species to man.  Making smarter sharks makes not sense on so many levels.  And these sharks were so ridiculously intelligent too!  That and lucky.  These sharks go to places no other shark would try because every corridor in the movie had just enough water for them to make their ways comfortably through the halls, but also enough that the humans would feel comfortable walking into the hallways.  When one shark had LL Cool J trapped in a stove, it’s random thrashing actually turned on the stove.  Yeah, ’cause THAT’s likely!  Just about as likely that his Zippo would still ignite after soaking in his pocket underwater for so long.  And ::SPOILER:: it turns out the sharks planned the whole thing to gain their freedom.  Are you shitting me?!  You planned to smash Stellan Skarsgard’s face into a glass window to force the crew to release a certain series of doors that would flood and collapse a certain side of the facility and allow you to jump the fence?  Hans Gruber’s plan’s weren’t as well thought out!  It’s also never really explained why God hates the shit right out of Stellan Skarsgard.  I half thought about checking the earlier parts of the movie again to see if there was some point where Skarsgard was pissing on the grave of an Indian or setting crosses on fire.  I did find it interesting that the movie went for a surprise at the end.  ::SPOILER:: LL Cool J and Thomas Jane are the only survivors of the movie.  I was pretty shocked when Saffron Burrows got killed because she was a quasi-love interest and they never kill the girl.  If you have two girls, you kill one, but the other lives, right?  Not Deep Blue Sea.  The problem with that is: I don’t want surprise sadness out of my big dumb action movie!  Big dumb action movies are allowed to give the audience the obvious ending.

The performances were all pretty flimsy.  Thomas Jane plays a pretty obvious hero type, but does it well enough, even though I’m pretty sure the explosion that kills the final shark would’ve created shock waves that would’ve killed him too.  I think Mythbusters taught me that.  Saffron Burrows plays a pretty obvious scientist-who’s-obsessed-with-her-work type.  At least there was a part that made a pretty flimsy excuse to get her into her underwear, where she had to use her scuba suit to stand on in order to ground herself as she electrocuted a shark.  But she’s really skinny and not that appealing, so that didn’t do much.  Plus, it was kind of out of no where and not really necessary to the movie, especially since the shoes she was wearing appeared to be rubber.  Also, at the end, to draw the shark closer to Thomas Jane so he could kill it, she cuts her hand and jumps into the water.  They smell blood; everyone knows that!  JUST PUT YOUR HAND IN!  I guess you got what was coming to you.  Samuel L. Jackson is usually a pleasure to watch in any role, but he was strangely awkward with everyone in this movie.  I was caught way off guard when he died, though.  THEY ATE HIM!  A MOTHERFUCKING SHARK ATE HIM!  LL Cool J can act; I’ve seen him do it before.  So, if you watch this movie before you see him do something better, keep that in mind.  He won’t convince you here.  Plus, he’s really annoying with all his quasi-religious mumbo jumbo he keeps spouting.  I’ve got nothing against religion, but he would say contradictory things along the lines of “Dear Jesus, help me to survive this situation … and KILL THE SHIT OUT OF THAT MOTHERFUCKIN SHARK!”  You shouldn’t say these things to Jesus.  Michael Rapaport’s character made me think he was the love child of Ben Affleck and Justin Bartha’s characters from Gigli.  Kind of Italian, kind of retarded.  Jacqueline McKenzie was the character you need in any of these kind of movies of the one that starts going crazy and losing their shit.  But her death made me laugh the most because she, of course, gets killed by a shark.  But when she rises out of the water in the shark’s mouth, she’s sitting on it in a way where she had a leg on either side of it’s mouth and her crotch inside it’s mouth, which made me think dirty things.  Stellan Skarsgard was, by far, the greatest actor in this movie and, quite possibly, in the world.  Actually, I think he’s a great actor and all, but I felt like I need to amp up the props because this movie crapped in his mouth.  Save for (arguably) Samuel L. Jackson, Skarsgard has blown everyone in this movie out of the water since this movie with his appearances in Pirates of the Caribbean, Thor, and soon to be the Avengers.  Also, I just wanted to mention that I also thought it was funny that, in the first five minutes of the movie – when some kids are partying on a boat and are later attacked by one of the sharks – one of them proclaims “We’re havin’ a party, man!”  I’ve been to a few parties in my day and never once has someone felt the need to declare that fact for the rest of our edification.

This is not a good movie by a long shot, but it is a perfect joke fodder type of movie.  It’s completely ridiculous, but fun to watch.  Most of the performances are mediocre, but they’re elevated by the greatness of Stellan Skarsgard.  It’s pretty to look at, but even prettier to laugh at.  I will actually say that you SHOULD watch this movie if you have Netflix streaming.  It won’t cost you anything you’re not already paying and you can’t help but laugh at this thing.  I’ll give Deep Blue Sea “What you’ve done is taken God’s oldest killing machine and given it will and desire” out of “There’s doctor Jim Whitlock, the most brilliant man ever!”

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Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)


I Punched Out Adolf Hitler 200 Times.

I just watched a trailer that made me really excited for May of next year. So excited that I decided I should try to do one movie a month that will set us up for that movie. The movie I’m excited about is the Avengers, and today’s movie is the most recent Avenger movie about the oldest Avenger, Captain America. I’ve already knocked out Thor, so I have two Iron Man movies and two Hulk movies left. So, again, the one I’m knocking out for this month is Captain America: The First Avenger, directed by Joe Johnston and starring Chris Evans, Hugo Weaving, Hayley Atwell, Stanley Tucci, Sebastian Stan, Tommy Lee Jones, Dominic Cooper, Neal McDonough, Derek Luke, Kenneth Choi, J.J. Feild, Bruno Ricci, and a brief appearance – as in most Avenger movies – Samuel L. Jackson.

A bunch of scientists are messing around in the Arctic when they find something in the snow. It’s a giant spacecraft looking thing. Inside, they find a circular object with red, white, and blue on it. We then dive into the backstory of that circular object. Back in 1942, a Nazi scientist named Johann Schmidt (Hugo Weaving) busts into a church looking for a shiny, blue cube with untold powers. In the US, a scrawny kid by the name of Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) keeps getting rejected from the army because of his health and wussiness. But the kid’s got moxie! A scientist named Dr. Abraham Erskine (Stanley Tucci) recognizes Steve’s moxie and allows him to join the army to see if he’s got what it takes to be the guinea pig of Erskine’s super-soldier program. At first, his commanding officers, Colonel Chester Phillips (Tommy Lee Jones) and British agent Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell), don’t have a lot of confidence in him. But, after being the only soldier to jump on top of a dummy grenade that was thrown as a test, they agree to allow him into the program. Moxie! A couple injections and some vita-rays later, Steve Rogers turns from a scrawny fuck into a big hunk of man meat. At first, Steve is made to go around on propaganda tours to raise money for the war, but when he tries that mess for the troops, they mock him for being lame. He finds out that his old friend Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) and a number of other troops were taken prisoner so Steve Rogers resolves to rescue them. He successfully rescues them and meets Schmidt, who then takes off his Agent Smith mask and reveals that he’s the Red Skull – failed first experiment of the super-soldier program – and that he’s got a plan to basically destroy the world. Steve Rogers, with the help of Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper), gets a snazzy new outfit, a sweet, very familar, Vibranium shield, and starts ass whooping some Nazi’s under the name Captain America, even though he’s only First Sergeant America.

It always warms my heart when Marvel makes a good movie out of one of their franchises. As with most comic book companies that have taken their characters to the big screen, Marvel has had a spotty history, but they were able to pull off Captain America very well. And thank Odin for that too, because Captain America is not only one of the biggest names in comic books, but he’s also kind of an American icon. The story of this movie could probably not help but be good. Just put the Captain America origin story up on the big screen. That can’t be that hard. That origin story was good when it started, and it has been refined over the years in different incarnations of the Captain that I can’t imagine much difficulty for the writers here. At first, I was thinking that the message of the movie about a scrawny kid becoming a hero was a good message, then I got to thinking that this message is lost because of the fact that he was only able to become a hero by getting changed completely by a serum that real scrawny people won’t have access to. But who cares, the movie is good times. I also like the whole part about Captain America disappearing in martyrdom, then being found in present day and recruited for the Avengers, but that was a fairly small part in the movie that just bookended the rest of the movie. It was also pretty cool that Cap starts off using a gun but quickly learns that he can whoop ass with just his shield and stopped using guns. A couple of story things that caught me was that, at one point, a spy from Hydra tries to sabotage and steal the super-soldier program and he sets off a cigarette case explosion with a button in a lighter. The thing I thought was weird was that this same lighter made a car explode and made his submarine come up. That is a versatile lighter button! Also, Captain America gets onto Red Skull’s big ass plane by the landing gear which made me think: shouldn’t someone do something about landing gear? How many times have you seen someone sneak their way onto a plane through the landing gear, either in movies or video games? Heck, I just did it in Uncharted 3 a couple days ago. Someone should figure that out.

I really like the visual style of the movie too. It’s definitely a period piece, taking place in the 1940’s and all, but it’s also got a little futuristic part to it because of all the cool technology that Stark and Schmidt had invented. The contrast really worked for the movie. The effect of shrinking down beefcake Chris Evans into a scrawny kid actually worked better than I expected. I half expected it to be an awful, young Jeff Bridges from Tron thing, but they did it much better. There were times when the face didn’t fit that well, but for the most part it looked good. I also watched the special features and found out that sometimes it was just Chris Evans in the scene and they shrunk him digitally and sometimes they plastered his face onto a scrawny dude’s body. They also changed Cap’s outfit a bit, as they tend to do in movies, but it still had the classic look to it. It wasn’t nearly as drastic as the changes in the X-Men movies, where each of their distinctive outfits became black leather gear. In this movie, Cap’s normally weird outfit of a blue scaly top, red pirate boots, and wings on his helmet became something more practical with the same color schemes. And they threw in the old outfit as his propaganda costume just to show people how gay it would look.

I came to a realization in watching this movie. I really want to hate Chris Evans because he’s all in shape and handsome and whatnot, but I can’t. He’s an entertaining guy to watch. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him do an emotionally charged performance before, but I thought he was cool in Fantastic Four, Captain America, and Scott Pilgrim. He’s like Brad Pitt, but not as great an actor. I really want to hate them both, but I like their movies so I can’t. Hugo Weaving is also a badass. I had just been thinking the other day about people that have played so many awesome characters in movies and my best example was Hugo Weaving. He has Red Skull, Elrond in Lord of the Rings, V from V for Vendetta, Agent Smith in the Matrix, and he’s the voice of Megatron in Transformers. Tommy Lee Jones is also awesome in this movie. He doesn’t play it like the classic army guy that R. Lee Ermey made a staple. What he does do is play a pretty serious role that is always making snarky comments. My favorite was when Hayley Atwell kissed Chris Evans goodbye before he got on Red Skull’s plane and then he looked at Tommy Lee Jones and TLJ said “I’m not kissin’ you”. Good times. Hayley Atwell herself did a fine job but she was mainly there to have a love interest for Cap. I liked Sebastian Stan as Bucky, Stanley Tucci as the doctor, and Dominic Cooper as Howard Stark, but I don’t really have anything much to say about them.

Captain America is not a movie that will bring out tons of emotions in it’s audience, and I’m not sure they’re really going for that. What they seemed to want to make is a good times movie, and they did. The look was fantastic, the story was from the comics and was always great, but translated well, and the performances were all great too. I bought this movie on BluRay the day it was released and I believe this is a good enough movie to join any respectable movie collection, but in the very least, you should rent it. I’ll give this movie “I think it works” out of “I’m a captain!”

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Star Wars: Episodes I, II, and III (1999, 2002, and 2005)


Twi’leks are hot!

As requested, I will be reviewing the Star Wars films in two reviews, by their trilogies.  First, the prequel trilogy (Episodes I, II, and III) and next the original trilogy (Episodes IV, V, and VI).  Do I need to display their numbers as Roman numerals?  Probably not.  But I’m gonna.  Before I jump in to my first attempt to do multiple movies in one review, I will warn you that I will be spoiling in this review.  But, on the other hand, if you haven’t seen Star Wars by this point in your life, I hate you.

Episode I – The Phantom Menace.  (1999)

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away there are trade disputes.  The Trade Federation has put a blockade around the planet of Naboo and two Jedi, Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson) and Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor), are sent in to fix it.  The Viceroy of the Trade Federation gets the order from Darth Sidious to kill the two Jedi.  But the Jedi won’t go down easy.  They fight their way out and stow aboard a ship going to Naboo.  Here they meet the ruination of the Star Wars series, Jar Jar Binks (Ahmed Best).  With him, they go to visit the recently captured Queen of the … Nabooians? … Queen Amidala (Natalie Portman or Keira Knightley, depending on when you see her) and rescue her, taking her to Tatooine.  They meet Anakin Skywalker (Jake Lloyd for the time being), a slave of a flying blue thing named Watto, and make a wager with Watto for Anakin’s freedom and the parts they need to repair their ship.  Commence 15 minutes of pod racing!  They win and leave.  Qui-Gon wants Anakin because, as with most religious type figures, he likes little boys.  No, it’s because he has an unusually high count of midichlorians, little creatures that get you tied in to the Force … and also clean a pool really well.  They head to the capital planet of Coruscant and get Senator Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) elected Supreme Chancellor of the Senate, a decision that will in no way come back to bite them in the ass.  They go back to Naboo to try to save the planet and the two Jedi get into a fight with Darth Sidious’ apprentice, Darth Maul (Ray Park).  He kills Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan kills him right back.  Then they save Naboo.  Obi-Wan is made a Jedi Knight and takes Anakin on as his apprentice, as per Qui-Gon’s last request.

Episode II – Attack of the Clones.  (2002)

10 years later, same far, far away galaxy, a Separatist movement has been set up against the Republic behind former Jedi, Count Dooku (Christopher Lee).  Amidala (Now a Senator and occasionally Rose Byrne), returns to Coruscant to vote on some junk and someone tries to kill her, instead killing her stand-in.  Obi-Wan and grown up Anakin (Hayden Christensen) are assigned to protect her.  After another assassination attempt, Obi-Wan is goes to Kamino (or as the Mexicans call it, El Kamino) in search of the assassin.  Anakin goes with Amidala back to Naboo to tell her his dissertation about why he hates sand so much.  Hating sand gets this woman moist and they start getting all romantic like.  On Kamino, Obi-Wan finds out that a now dead Jedi had ordered the production of a clone army, all cloned from Jango Fett (Temuera Morrison).  Eventually they fight, but Jango escapes.  Obi-Wan follows him to Geonosis, a planet where they’re creating a droid army.  Then he gets captured.  Back on Naboo, Anakin is having bad dreams about his momma dying so he and Amidala go back to Tatooine.  There, they find that she was sold to a guy who freed and married her, then she was taken by Tusken Raiders.  Anakin goes and finds her, but she’s been tortured nigh to death and dies in his arm.  So he kills all the men, women, and children in the Tusken camp.  Okay, perhaps he overreacted.  They get a message from Obi-Wan and go to save him, but then get captured themselves.  In classic Bond villain style, they are to be executed in an overly complicated way that always works.  They escape and the rest of the Jedi show up.  Then Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson, mother fucker!) cuts off Jango Fett’s head.  This makes Baby Boba (Daniel Logan), his son, sad.  In order to make this move on Geonosis, Jar Jar had to go and fuck up things more by giving emergency powers to Palpatine, who passes the use of clone soldiers.  A big battle engages and Obi-Wan, Anakin, and Amidala chase down Dooku.  Dooku soundly beats them both in a lightsaber duel, cutting off one of Anakin’s arms in the process.  Then Yoda (voiced by Frank Oz) comes in and whoops all up on that ass.  Dooku escapes.  At the end, Anakin (with new robo arm) gets married to Amidala in secret.

Episode III – Revenge of the Sith.  (2005)

Obi-Wan and Anakin infiltrate the flagship of General Grievous (voiced by Matthew Wood), commander of the Separatist droid army, to rescue Supreme Chancellor Palpatine.  They again fight Dooku, who promptly knocks out Obi-Wan.  Anakin, on the other hand, cuts off both Dooku’s arms and then executes him, being egged on by Palpatine.  (Did you get the “on the other hand” pun?  You’re welcome)  Back to Coruscant, Anakin meets up with Amidala again and she reveals she’s been knocked up by his Jedi jizz.  Anakin starts having visions of Amidala dying during childbirth and vows he won’t let it happen.  And he especially won’t be the CAUSE of it happening.  Because of his closeness to Palpatine, the Jedi Council tell him to monitor Palpatine.  Anakin has begun to get all emo on the Council because of Palpatine’s manipulation and their denial of his promotion to Jedi Knight.  I hear you, Ani.  Palpatine also gets Anakin’s attention by telling him he’s heard of a dark side of the Force ability to keep people from dying.  Anakin figures out that Palpatine is Darth Sidious, Lord of the Sith.  Obi-Wan is sent after Grievous and kills him.  Mace Windu goes to make sure Palpatine relinquishes his control of the Senate with the death of Grievous and Anakin tells him that Palpatine is the Sith Lord.  Windu orders Anakin to stay behind as he confronts Palpatine, but Anakin is torn because he believes Palpatine is the only one that can save Amidala.  Mace fights Sidious and wins, until Anakin goes and screws it up.  Sidious starts shooting some lightning at Windu, but it’s deflected back at himself, fucking up his face and starting to kill him.  Anakin rashly cuts Windu’s arm off and Sidious shoots Windu out the window.  Sidious then names Anakin his apprentice in the dark side, changing his name to Darth Vader (probably naming him after those Star Wars movies).  Then Sidious sends Vader out to kill all the children in the Jedi Temple, and then go to Mustafar to kill the Separatist leaders.  Obi-Wan finds out what Anakin has done and informs Amidala, but she won’t tell him where Anakin’s gone.  But he stows away on her ship as she goes to confront him.  Feeling he’s been betrayed by Amidala because she brought Obi-Wan there, he Force chokes her into passing out, then Obi-Wan and Anakin get into one hell of a lightsaber battle.  Yoda tries to stop Palpatine by attacking him directly, but is unable to defeat him and must escape.  Obi-Wan has better luck and cuts off Anakin’s legs as Anakin tries to attack from an inferior position.  Then Obi-Wan collects Amidala and leaves Anakin burning up by a lake of lava.  Amidala does die during childbirth, but the twins (Luke and Leia) live.  Who knows if those kids will ever make something of themselves, coming from a broken home as they do.  Darth Sidious rescues Vader from near death and turns him all robotic, telling him of Amidala’s demise.  He yells “no”.  Leia is given to a Senator from Alderaan to raise, and Luke is taken back to Tatooine to be raised by his step-family, Owen and Beru, under the watchful eye of Obi-Wan.  The rest of the Jedi are spread throughout the galaxy, waiting for their moment to return.

WOW!  That’s a gundamn lot of writing, and I haven’t even started reviewing!  Oh well, here we go.

The Phantom Menace is, almost inarguably, the worst movie of the 6.  It looks pretty as hell, especially when they’re on Naboo, but almost everything else about this movie doesn’t work.  Liam Neeson, Ewan McGregor, and Natalie Portman all perform well.  Jake Lloyd got on my nerves a little, but most of that was probably the dialogue (“Are you an angel?”)  Also, this kid was basically Jedi Jesus, as it’s revealed that he was immaculately conceived.  Of course, everyone knows that Jar Jar Binks was horribly annoying in every way.  Conversely, Ray Park as Darth Maul was a total metal badass.  Too bad he only got to be in one movie.  The basic premise of the movie starts off poorly too because it’s about trade disputes.  How do you make a trade dispute interesting?  Jedi!  And then it’s still not that interesting.  All the little skinny droids, which are the main soldiers in the movie, are completely useless, almost as much so as Storm Troopers.  The pod racing was a horrible position to be in during this movie.  It took 15 minutes and was really boring.  It was like watching intergalactic Nascar.  Hell, even Jabba the Hutt fell asleep during it.  The dialogue was pretty bad in parts of this movie.  Also, it made me think that George Lucas has the sense of humor of a 5 year old.  At one point, Jar Jar steps in poodoo and, at another point, a creature farts.  This is supposed to be humor.  This one was not a horrible movie, but it was a let down for the movie that brings back the Star Wars saga after so many years of waiting.

Attack of the Clones comes next and gives Jar Jar the backseat.  He passes on his crown of “Most annoying thing in Star Wars” to Hayden Christensen.  This kid was trying throughout the entire movie to act his way out of a paper bag, but remained in it until the very end of the next movie.  Ewan McGregor gets better in this movie and also shows the audience that Obi-Wan’s favorite pastime is cutting off people’s hands in bars.  Natalie Portman does the best she can do with the shitty romantic dialogue that Lucas wrote for her, but also makes us think she’s retarded by leaving the STUPIDEST THING SHE KNOWS IN CHARGE OF HER PLANET!  How you gonna make Jar Jar a senator?!  It’s because of him that everything bad in the Star Wars series happens.  On the other hand, we wouldn’t have the original trilogy without his actions.  I also think it’s strange that I can’t get myself a girlfriend but a smokin’ hot biddy like Natalie Portman will get busy with a guy that just indiscriminately killed men, women, and children.  Not a horrible movie again, and it’s on it’s way towards getting better.

Revenge of the Sith elevates the prequel trilogies from the abyss it would have been in if the third had been on par with one of the others.  It seems to have to stuff a lot into the amount of time it has because it has to tie up all the loose ends and get us ready for A New Hope.  In the beginning of this, beloved robot R2D2 reminds us why we all love him so as he takes on a giant robot trooper as he’s surrounded by others.  R2D2’s like a honey badger!  He just don’t give a fuck!  You little badass you.  Anyways, Hayden is back and as bad as ever.  In this movie, credulity is stretched as Anakin starts getting more and more obviously dark side-leaning.  He starts wearing clothes as emo as he’s acting; getting all black and dark and morose.  And, again, why the hell couldn’t Lucas get someone from a famous romance movie or something to come in and write his romantic dialogue for him?  The rest of the dialogue ranges from fine to awesome, but when someone is falling in love, it’s all “You’re beautiful” “That’s because I’m in love” “No, it is because I am the one who is in love … with you!”  As for examples of the other dialogue, the way Palpatine manipulates others (throughout all of the movies, but especially here) is sublime.  I was fixing to join the dark side if he kept going.  The end of the movie is where everything is at it’s best.  Ewan McGregor is awesome as he’s just defeated Anakin and you can watch his heart break as he has to defeat someone he’s so close to for the evil he’s committed.  Hayden is at his best when he shuts the fuck up and kills younglings and Separatists.  And the climax of the movie is everything you hoped it would be.  Big ass battle between Obi-Wan and Anakin in a place that looks like Hell itself.  Yoda and Sidious throwing down in the giant Council chambers.  The birth of Luke and Leia and the birth of Darth Vader as we know him.  Then they kinda screw it up with Vader’s “NOOOOOOOoooooooooo!”  But it’s not that bad, just a little goofy.

So that’s it.  The longest review I’ve done (until possibly tomorrow).  Altogether these movies are of course the weakest of the saga, but it’s so hard to surpass the original trilogy’s glory for me.  The awesome thing about these movies being first in the chronology of the series but last in real-time chronology is that this series gets to steadily increase in awesomeness, unlike most movies that get worse and worse as they go on.  None of us will remember it that way, but when my blu-rays are passed down to my children and their children, they’ll think that’s the order they came out in and all will be right in the world.  The first two could be skipped, but to use them as a build up to the pretty epic conclusion of the third is worth the time.  The Star Wars prequel trilogy gets a “You were supposed to be the Chosen One!” out of “I hate sand”.

And, as always, please rate, comment, and/or like this post and others.  It may help me get better.