Avengers Assemble (2012) – A Rewatched Quick Capsule Review

Avengers Assemble (2012) – A Rewatched Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
So Disney Plus launched and I went back to where it all started.  Yes Avengers Assemble changed the landscape of modern cinema.  Yup Iron Man was more significant in terms of launching the MCU but The Avengers/ Avengers Assemble showed that a multi-layered set up across multiple films and characters could be brought together in a film that gave (almost) everyone their moment in the sun whilst being coherent, fun and full of memorable moments (and quibble lines). It also nailed the Hulk after multiple miss steps.  Avengers Assemble is still the best of all the Avengers movies AND one of the best MCU films.  It also wipes the floor with Justice League but you already knew that.  Essential.

Best Bit: Attack on New York

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Iron Man, Thor , Captain America

 


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Bloodshot (2020): Review by Grosse Point Geek

Bloodshot (2020): Review by Grosse Point Geek

A Blog Grosse Point Geek Other Cr*p

Plot in a Nutshell:
A crack US Marine (Vin Diesel – one dimensional) and his wife (Tallulah Riley – hideously miscast) are kidnapped and murdered by a shadowy bunch of mercenaries, all is not lost though as here comes Dr Guy Pearce (sleepwalking) and his trusty advanced nanobot technology and hey presto big Vin is rebuilt as an unstoppable, unkillable super soldier armed with the ability to instantly heal himself every time he gets shot, knifed or blown up. I could go on but as you have probably guessed from here on in there are a lot of fights, explosions and more than a fair share of slo-mo shots of Diesel looking hard as nails and really pissed off.

What worked?
The effects are pretty good, one or two of the action scenes are well handled and there is a fairly clever plot twist halfway through that wasn’t bad at all.

What could have been better?
The action tries to be inventive but is mostly bland and fails to excite, the baddie and the rest of the supporting cast are faceless non entities, plus there is the glaring problem that Diesel has not one iota of charisma and simply cant act –  and (with the notable exception of the Riddick trilogy) he’s no different here than he was in every other action film he has ever made:

frowns a lot? – check

looks constipated?  – correct

Wears a vest showing off his abs? Yep

Thinks he is making Shakespeare? You betcha

Rest of the cast just there for the money? Absolutely

Review Summary:

Vin tries his best but proves once again that he simply cannot compete with the likes of Dwayne Johnson, Arnie or even John Cena in the charisma stakes, not only that but the story is one we’ve seen many times before particularly in Robocop and Universal Soldier.

On the whole this is just a forgettable film that passed the time well enough but is really is bit of a waste of time and effort – which as always, is a bit of a shame.

 

 


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Birds Of Prey (2020): Review by Grosse Point Geek

Birds Of Prey (2020): Review by Grosse Point Geek

A Blog Grosse Point Geek The Blogs

Plot in a nutshell: Newly dumped by the Joker, Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) finds herself pursued by every criminal and low life in Gotham that she has ever wronged. One of these is Roman Sionis  AKA Black Mask (Ewan McGregor) who promises not to kill Harley if she retrieves a special diamond containing the numbers of a former mafia don’s bank accounts.

 

What Worked? Margot Robbie is absolutely fantastic as Quinn and proves just as fun, unhinged and wild eyed here as she was in Suicide Squad. Mary Elizabeth Winstead is also very good as Huntress as is Jurnee Smolett-Bell as the ass kicking Black Canary and Rosie Perez as Renee Montoya – a Gotham Detective with a penchant for spouting one liners straight out of bad 80’s cop shows. Its also seriously action packed, with loads of bone crushing fights and wince inducing violence. The script, by Christina Hodson is well written with plenty of one liners and profanities plus Cathy Yan’s direction is sure-fire and confident.

 

What could have been better?: Ewan McGregor is somewhat miscast as Roman Sionis and is far too OTT and pantomime-ish to be effective enough as a truly memorable villain.

 

Review Summary: After the divisive Batman V Superman and the utter debacle of Justice League, it seems that DC have finally got their house in order and delivered another very good standalone entry in their loosely linked expanded universe. One can only hope that the forthcoming Wonder Woman 1984 and next years The Suicide Squad will keep their excellent run of form going strong. I have to say that they are still nowhere near challenging the mighty MCU but on the strength of this film, plus last years Joker and Aquaman one must concede that DC are certainly more plausible contenders than they used to be.

 

See at Cinema? – Yes

 

Buy On DVD/Blu Ray? – Yes

 

 


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Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn (2020)- A Quick Capsule Review

Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn (2020)- A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
It feels a bit mean giving Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn a  7/10 (Spoiler Alert for the rating I guess) but it’s just one of those films that’s ALMOST brilliant.  For sure Birds Of Prey is funny, charming, violent and colourful. It even has a good villain in McGregor. Yup Birds of Prey is so fun it even manages to make you forget about disaster that was Suicide Squad (that said Robbie was the best thing in that too). And if this was JUST Robbie I’d be onboard. It would be an 8/10.  Maybe even higher.   But the whole Birds Of Prey thing just doesn’t work well enough.  Sure Jurnee Smollett-Bell is good as Black Canary but Mary Elizabeth Winstead & Rosie Perez just seem miscast and the film spends time introducing characters that just don’t need to be there or that you just don’t care about.   Yup it may say Birds of Prey above the poster but this is Quinn’s movie and the film is far better when she is on screen.

Best Bit: The Tank Girl punk rock n roll feel

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Cinema

If You Liked this Try: Suicide Squad, Wonder Woman, Tank Girl 

 


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Justice League (2017) – A Revisited Quick Capsule Review

Justice League (2017) – A Revisited Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Justice League isn’t the worst film ever as some critics will have you believe.  BUT it’s also a long way from being good.  DC’s Sniderverse continues it’s desire to make some of the best superhero of all time as dull as possible with the introductions of the latest batch – Aquaman (Underdeveloped), Cyborg (Terrible design & CGI) and The Flash (Not a patch on the TV version) along side an increasingly bored Batfleck, Sulky Superman and the actually still good Wonder Woman.  They team up, they fight CGI things and little else happens.  Nothing has weight, people com back from the dead (and we don’t really get to see the wider implications of this, despite it being a major story point) and SuperJoss crash lands Snider’s film with the help of a script polish (you know its him as the moments stand out like a sore thumb) and CGI moustache removal (it’s as bad as it sounds).  For me it’s the weakest of the DCEU (but the margins between this, Man Of Steel and Suicide Squad are VERY slim) and pretty much kills any further spin off’s dead.

Best Bit: Wonder Woman. Again.

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Wonder Woman, Batman Vs Superman: Dawn of Justice, The Dark Knight 

 


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Joker (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Joker (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Let’s cut to the chase…. You can fully believe the hype here – Joker is one of the best films of 2019.  Period.   It’s dangerous, intense and brutal… a game changer of a film that does so much more than I expected it to do.  Playing out like part V For Vendetta part Taxi Driver, The Hangover’s Todd Philips delivers a film that you’d think had been done by a master filmmaker.  Not the guy who delivered some pretty average films.   Joker is stylish but without being in your face and, contrary to the Birds Of Prey trailer that screened beforehand, relies on performance and nuance over flash. Philips is a revelation.  But for all the films expert direction it would be very different without Joaquin Phoenix’s central performance as Arthur Fleck.  He’s mesmerising, edgy and, at least for a time, highly sympathetic. Phoenix must be a shoe in for an acting nomination at the Oscar’s next year. Joker delivers more than it had any right to and become essential viewing in the process.

Best Bit: Joker On TV

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Cinema

If You Liked this Try: V For Vendetta, Taxi Driver, The King Of Comedy , Fight Club

 


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Hellboy (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Hellboy (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
The 2019 version of Hellboy is a real slog.  Okay full disclosure I was never a massive fan of the Del Toro Hellboy films but at least I could see WHY people liked them.  This Hellboy… well let’s just politely say that it’s a hot mess.  Okay politeness over… from it’s 90’s quality visual FX to it’s 70’s quality make up to it’s scenes that literally look like they were shot by low-budget filmmakers in a Car park stairwell there is little to recommend here.  Script, direction, design… all poor.  And man its dull. Yup there was studio interference but even with that in mind Marshall needs to shoulder some blame.  It’s just a mess from start to finish – not least the cast which just doesn’t work.  It’s not QUITE the worst film of 2019.  But it’s damn close.

Best Bit: When it finished

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Avoid

If You Liked this Try: Hellboy (2004), Hellboy II: The Golden Army, Doomsday

 


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Shazam (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Shazam (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Shazam is the best modern (post Nolan) DCEU film to date.  Okay so other than Wonder Woman that’s still a pretty low bar but regardless Shazam is a genuinely funny, genuinely charming and probably top 10 of the year film with loads to entertain kids and adults of all ages.  Of course it’s the cast that make this work and Zachary Levi especially nails the titular character, with Mark Strong once again laying it down thick and fast as the villain.  Okay so the last thirty minute plus smash-em-crash-em goes on too long (the film really shines in the smaller moments) but it, and you, are having so much fun you can pretty much forgive it. Shazam delivers.  See DC CAN make a good film.

Best Bit: Testing powers

Cinema, Stream, Avoid: Cinema

If You Liked this Try: Wonder Woman, Deadpool, Aquaman 

 


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Spiderman Week: Spiderman: Homecoming (2017) – A Quick Capsule Review

Spiderman Week: Spiderman: Homecoming (2017) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
A year on Spiderman: Homecoming is still a top draw Marvel film.  Keaton’s Vulture, Holland’s Peter Parker, even the support from Favreau and Downey Jr enhance the film and it’s still great to see a teenage Spiderman (yes I’m looking at you Garfield).  There’s still pacing issues (second time around the film takes a while to get going) but it’s worth it for scenes like that in the car and the odd Ferris reference.

Best Bit: The car

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Spiderman, Spiderman 2, Ant-Man

 

 


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Spiderman Week: The Amazing Spiderman (2012)  – A Quick Capsule Review

Spiderman Week: The Amazing Spiderman (2012) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Let’s get this straight: Did The Amazing Spiderman Need to be made.  Simply put – no.  But is it worth watching?  Certainly.  It’s a flawed production for sure with CGI issues, a poor villain and a feeling of been there done that that seeps through from start to finish.  BUT the central story of Peter Parker/Gwen Stacy as performed by Garfield & Stone is just devine and the film does a lot to reset the problems of Spiderman 3 that left little room for any further movies.  So not a must see but certainly with some good action, a great cast and a great central paring there are far worst films to watch.

Best Bit:Emma Stone

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Spiderman 2, Spiderman, Spiderman 3 

 


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