Posts Tagged ‘bryan singer’

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Bohemian Rhapsody (2018)

November 15, 2018

Anticipation Level: 6/10

Director: Bryan Singer (The Usual Suspects, X-Men, X2, Superman Returns)
Starring: Rami Malek, Lucy Boynton, Gwilym Lee, Ben Hardy, Mike Myers

I’m no Queen or Freddy Mercury superfan and while I recognize and enjoy the band’s most famous songs, I’m not really familiar with their discography either. With that said, I can’t speak on Bohemian Rhapsody‘s historical accuracy. I’ve read that some of the timelines presented are erroneous, but none of that affected my viewing of the film at all.

I thought Bohemian Rhapsody was enjoyable and it had some very good high points, but it felt longer than its 2 hour and 15 minute running time. It functioned much better when the band was on screen together creating their most famous content than when the film focused more on Freddy Mercury’s private life. Rami Malek was Oscar worthy as Mercury though. He gives one of the year’s best performances I’ve seen so far. The film closes with a rather spectacular recreation of Queen’s Live Aid performance in 1985. It’s a strong 15 minute set that is said to be an exact replication of that actual performance and that’s pretty damn cool.

Bohemian Rhapsody was fun movie that highlights Queen’s most iconic songs and gets a great performance from Rami Malek. There were a couple moments I found moving, but overall I wasn’t too invested in the story. It’s worth watching and is obviously a must see for fans of the band.

Replay Value: I could watch it again but I probably won’t.

Sequel Potential: N/A

Oscar Potential: Rami Malek is a strong contender for Best Actor. I can’t imagine him not making the cut at this point. I think I prefer Bradley Cooper’s performance in A Star is Born. I’d be pretty surprised to see this movie garner much other Oscar attention, but it could possibly contend in sound categories and maybe Costume Design.

Dina Meter: If I find a movie struggles with pacing a little bit, I generally think Dina probably won’t like it too much. I think she’d think was okay.

6/10 (Fun)

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X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)

December 23, 2016

Starring: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Sophie Turner, Nicholas Hoult
Director: Bryan Singer (X-Men: Days Of Future Past, Superman Returns, X-Men 2)

Bottom Line: Judging from the trailers, this movie looked every bit as messy as Batman Vs Superman so I skipped it in theaters and now having watched it at home, I can see my fears were completely justified. It’s terrible. When an X-Men movie starts off in ancient Egypt and looks more like a sequel to The Mummy you know things are not looking up. Oscar Isaac seems like a highly capable actor, especially in last year’s Ex Machina, but his portrayal of Apocalypse will probably go down as one of the worst roles of his career. The rest of the new cast adds little to the overall story. The new Cyclops is kind of cool, but Sophie Turner is horribly miscast as Jean Grey, feeling nothing like a young version of Famke Janssen’s take on the character. I was excited to see Jubilee in action for the first time, but she is merely a background character.

I wasn’t looking forward to director Bryan Singer’s return to the franchise – especially after Matthew Vaughan did such a good job with X-Men: First Class – but he managed to bring his original trilogy and the reboot together seamlessly in X-Men: Days Of Future Past, making a solid movie out of a concept that could have been executed so poorly. Well, he couldn’t save the mess of a script he’s dealt here and history repeats itself, as the X-Men franchise once again delivers two good movies and a third one so bad it’s likely going to need another reboot.

This movie is all action spectacle and little else. You’ll likely be looking at your phone after 15 minutes.

Replay Value: Another X-Men movie that doesn’t exist to me.
Sequel Potential: I think the franchise dies again with this film, but Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine has another adventure due out next year with Logan.
Oscar Potential: How about Razzie potential?

Grade: 2.5/10 (horrible/skip it)

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The Wolverine (2013)

August 2, 2013

Starring: Hugh Jackman
Director: James Mangold (Walk The Line, Girl, Interrupted, 3:10 To Yuma)

I can’t say I was too excited to see The Wolverine, but with a lack of other options that fit our time frame and a girlfriend and mother that refuse to watch movies in 3D, it seemed like the obvious choice. After the disappointing X-Men: The Last Stand in 2006 and the travesty that was 2009’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine–a film so bad it killed off an entire franchise before it even started–my interest in the continuing sagas of Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine had pretty much evaporated. Fortunately, Matthew Vaughn breathed new life into the the X-Men franchise in 2011 with First Class and then The Avengers put everyone on alert, and the result is a pretty good solo Wolverine flick.

Interestingly enough, The Wolverine acknowledges the previous X-Men films–even the shitty third installment that includes the death of Jean Grey–and manages to bridge the gap between time periods and tell its own story, all while not totally sucking. That’s an accomplishment after the terrible origin film. Obviously Hugh Jackman is great as the title character and while this film doesn’t really challenge the actor’s abilities, it’s hard to imagine anyone else playing the role.

Setting the film in Japan was a good concept. I liked seeing Wolverine interact with mostly human characters in an environment you wouldn’t really expect to see in a film about a mutant superhero. It was a breath of fresh air in the comic book genre. Although, there was a scene that takes place on top of a train that while kind of awesome and funny, is pretty ridiculous for the human Japanese characters. The two Japanese lead actresses did a good job and Rila Rukushima was particularly awesome as Yukio. In fact, aside from a two hour running time that feels more like two and a half hours, The Wolverine‘s biggest weakness is in its villains. Viper is the main villain in the film and is played by a Russian actress that I’m unfamiliar with. Not only is the character a Poison Ivy rip off, but a white woman playing the lead antagonist in a film with a Japanese setting seems wildly out of place. Everything about her sucks: the acting, the concept, the motive. Ugh. The climax is a face off with the Silver Samurai that, well, is just bizarre. Wolverine fighting ninjas and yakuza? Awesome. Wolverine fighting mutants and old, Japanese men in robot suits? Crap.

Basically, The Wolverine is an enjoyable film that could have been much better with a different final act and more interesting villains. As it is, it’s still a step forward from the last film in the Wolverine franchise, and the mid-credits scene (the best moment in the whole film!) is reason to be excited about the future.

Grade: 5.5/10 (Recommended/Rent It)

Replay Value: Not worth owning unless you’re a die hard fan. I’ll probably never see it again.
Sequel Potential: Wolverine will be making his next appearance in 2014’s X-Men: Days Of Future Past.
Oscar Potential: None.
Nudity: None.
RottenTomatoes Scores: Critics: 67% Audience: 75%
IMDB Rating: 7.2/10

Recommendation: Not really worth theater prices, but something that’s worth watching when it comes out to rent. I’d rank the X-Men films as follows: X-Men: First Class, X2, X-Men, The Wolverine, X-Men: The Last Stand, and X-Men Origins: Wolverine.