Riddickulous

riddicThis movie was so boring I couldn’t fall asleep.

In his quest to get back to his home of Forya, Riddick is betrayed and finds himself stranded on an unknown planet. He comes upon a mercenary base and sends out a distress call. Full knowing that whomever responds is coming to collect the bounty on him. He has survived the harsh planet but now he must survive the bounty hunters coming to kill him.

To put it frankly, this movie was not good. I will say that the special effects were pretty good. I’ll even say the acting was well done. The only thing I did enjoy about the movie was seeing Katee Sackhoff. That just wasn’t enough though.

The big problem was the story. There were too many situations that just seemed too contrived. Early in the movie, Riddick is standing on a cliff edge at the moment he is betrayed. The sequence ends with the betrayer shooting the edge of the cliff and Riddick falling. Would he have really walked as far from his ship as he did and stand on this ledge? Why did they even land the ship on this peak to begin with? Then there was the silliness of every single person, except the religious guy, trying to be the galaxy’s biggest bad ass.

Maybe the worst part was just how boring the movie was. It was two hours long but if felt like it lasted forever. The movie starts out at a snails pace and is made even more dull by Vin Diesel’s narration. The film is plagued with scenes dragging out. Too much time is wasted trying to set things up. The back story took forever to explain and wasn’t even very compelling. Even after the set up is done, the payoff is lack luster to say the least. The movie comes of with the looks of an ‘A’ list movie but the plot of a ‘B’ list one.

Perhaps my hopes for this movie were just too high. Having enjoyed the other movies in the series, I wanted to enjoy this one as well. Alas, I did not. At least I didn’t pay much to not be entertained. Red Box had sent me a discount code to it only cost me fifty-three cents. That is about all I think this movie is worth.

Worst part? They have it all set up for the sequel. Damn, I hope they get better writers.

Gray V T

gravity
This movie really brings me down.

It’s just another day in space, until things go completely wrong. The Russians have apparently destroyed one of their own satellites causing a massive debris field. This has now put all the astronauts in the direct path of danger. Survival is the only task left and it will not be easy.

This movie received a lot of praise and I was really looking forward to watching it. Maybe my expectations were too high but I was left pretty disappointed at the end of it. I don’t want to start any science arguments but I feel like there some issues of things not being realistic. Then again, what do I really know about space anyway?

I get that the movie was really using space and all these things for the backdrop of a story about deeper human experience. Even with that said, it just wasn’t that interesting. I enjoyed watching all the extras on they Blu-ray more than I did the actual movie.

White House Clown

White House DownI think I just watched a really bad Die Hard remake. Hear me out on this one(possible spoilers).

Protecting the Speaker of the House should be a good job, but John Cale aspires for more. To impress his alienated daughter, he is trying to get a spot on the President’s Secret Service protection detail. He has used his connections to secure an interview and has decided to take his daughter with him to the White House. Unfortunately, the interview does not go well but he does not let his daughter know. They decide to take the White House tour while they are there and this is when things begin to unravel. A bomb has gone off in the Capitol Building and the White House has gone in to lockdown  trapping the tour group inside. To make matters worse, terroristic forces have now seized the White House. John Cale must now save his daughter, the President, and democracy.

Where do you start with this movie? Let’s go with the cast. The cast consists of a moderately impressive list of actors that you’ve heard of or at least have seen before. Channing Tatum being the big “star” with Jamie Foxx, Maggie Gyllenhall, and James Woods supporting. Too bad they had to lend their acting credentials to a story that had more holes in it than a block of swiss cheese. The writing effort on this film was the most insufferable part. I don’t think a lot if any research was done on this one to make it accurate as to how the government would handle such a situation. Including the monuments in the city might be the only accurate part of this film. The film relied upon chance and coincidence too many times to make it anywhere near believable. As for special effects, not that they looked bad but they didn’t blend in as well as they could have.

Why do I think this is a Die Hard rip off, and a bad one at that? Look at the similarities. First, character name – Die Hard: John McClain, White House Down: John Cale. Secondly, both are cops, New York vs. D.C.. Each character gets caught in a building that is taken over by terrorist. In each movie, a member of the hero’s family is also trapped in the building, wife vs. daughter. In moving around the building, they end up on top of an elevator and in a crawl space. Both hero’s acquire radios from the terrorists to listen in on them. How could you not notice that both end up running around saving the world in a white tank top? You’ve even got the villains lined up to match. James Woods takes Alan Rickman’s role. Even the secondary villain is a copy. The hero kills the guy’s “brother”, he swears that he will kill the hero, then they have a big fight scene together. Even the crime being committed is a cover for another crime in both movies. In White House Down, the President is held for ransom but the real plot is to steal the presidency. In Die Hard the hostages are being held to get political prisoners freed but the crime is robbing a vault.

Of the two movies ruining the White House under siege theme, this one comes in second place. If you are still compelled to see it, Amazon has the trifecta copy for about $19 and I’m not sure that is a good deal for this. I borrowed this to watch it and was glad I saved the money. Too bad mama was the one that paid for this and now she doesn’t want to talk about it.

Man of Stool

Man of SteelI really thought Superman Returns was going to be the low watermark for Superman movies…I was wrong.

If you don’t know the story of Superman, let’s do a quick recap. Superman’s home world, Krypton, is destroyed by its people over mining it(at least in this movie). Before its destruction, however, Superman’s father places his infant son in a spaceship that eventually lands on Earth. Here Superman grows up, learns of humanity, and how to use his powers for the betterment of mankind. In this flavor of Superman, his nemesis is a group of criminal Kryptonians that have been endlessly searching for him. Now he must battle them and save Earth.

The movie wasn’t completely bad so let’s cover the good parts first. The special effects were amazing. Nothing looked cheap or drawn in. Kudos to Russel Crowe being able to pull of another great supporting actor role. Amy Adams was quite fetching. That little wiggle in her walk was great. That’s if for the good things.

Now the rest of the movie and I don’t even know where to start. Why do they have to go over the back story of Superman every time? Superman is a pretty well established character in pop-culture and this movie further aggravates the tale by dragging it out through almost the entire movie by using flashbacks. Not only does it make the movie unnecessarily long but it makes it choppy and difficult to get into. Plot holes are staggering in this one. I can only hope my disinterest in the story as a whole was the reason I didn’t understand why certain things were happening. It just seemed like too many story elements were unnaturally grafted in. I’m fairly certain that whomever wrote this particular scrip doesn’t know too much about Superman or I hope somebody forced in a hole slew of changes against better judgment. Whether it was the story or the actor I’m not sure but Henry Cavill is not a convincing Superman.

I was excited about this movie, that was until I actually saw it. Rebooting a franchise sometime works out for the best but I feel like this reboot landed straight in the toilet. I can’t wait to see the Superman vs. Batman flick. Ah-man, I hope they cancel that thing.

A friend of mine had purchased this movie on iTunes so at least I didn’t pay to watch this disaster. It’s not on Netflix or Amazon Instant yet. The going price at Amazon is $18.50. Mama said let’s just move on from this one.

Darksliders 2

Darksiders 2I played the original Darksiders and had a lot of fun with it. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for the sequel.

Darksiders 2 continues the timeline and events of the first Darksiders. You play as another one of the four horsemen, Death, as he ventures to prove his brothers innocence.

Uh, where to start. Let’s be positive first. The graphics are great. The first game had good graphics but this game is better. The music was extremely well done and added greatly to the mood of the game.

Too bad that was it for the positive. The developers added an unneeded and overly complicated inventory system. I don’t want to worry about what boots I’m wearing just so I have better defense to attacks. The story was unclear and why you were doing things wasn’t always clear. The first game kept you engaged with constant enemy attacks whereas this game has too many points where you are solving puzzles God of War style and not even facing enemies.

Don’t buy this game. I borrowed it from a friend and was happy I did so because I almost did buy it and would have been even more disappointed. I gave up and didn’t even finish the game.

I hear mama calling so it’s time to go.

After Acting

After EarthIt wasn’t that bad…it wasn’t that good either.

General Cypher Raige is a well renowned and respected Ranger but is nearing the end of his career. He has served humanity long and well protecting them from the alien threat that found on their new home world. There is one final mission for General Raige and he has decided to take his son, Kitai, with him in the hopes that they will reconnect after their long time apart. Their bonding trip is disrupted when the space vessel flies through an asteroid field and thus forced to crash land. The planet they end up on is the same Earth that humanity fled from so many ages ago. Now overgrown with danger, father and son must fight to survive.

Presented with beautiful aesthetics, the movie ultimately limps on the broken crutch of the story. The blend of computer graphics and built sets is done very well. Even the advanced technology is pulled off in a surprising good fashion. Some of the futuristic tech is somewhat tailored to suit a little too much at times but I can give that a pass. What does not get a pass is the story line. Droll and unimaginative are harsh words but fitting nonetheless. The alien itself even came across as run of the mill. Pretty to look at but hard to watch is not something a movie should be, or your date to the movie for that matter.

Perhaps with all the metaphors and lessons the movie is supposed to be about I can only hope that the movie itself serves as a greater one it that perhaps Jaden Smith himself ultimately finds that he cannot and does not need to follow in his father’s footsteps. I don’t want to be hard on the young man but he has a void of charisma where his father is overflowing. Through out the movie I struggled to accept much less identify or sympathize with Jaden Smith’s character. They very nearly pulled a heart touching scene off at the very end but I just wasn’t convinced when it was finished. It’s not a positive sign when I can’t buy Jaden Smith as Will Smith’s son. I understand that the characters were supposed to be distant but I also understand that the resolution should have been better done.

If you’ve seen the trailers and commercials for After Earth, you have seen most of the better parts. Regretfully this was yet another movie that looked like something different in the trailers than it actually turned out to be. Fortunately I didn’t pay anything to watch this. I was able to borrow it and from that experience I don’t recommend paying Amazon $18 for this film.

Mama can’t say much to me about this one, she didn’t even finish watching it.