Godzilla (2014)- A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Godzilla (2014)- A Quick Capsule Review (Revisited)

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Gareth Edwards’s second film as a director sees him once again dealing with ‘monsters’ but this time he dares to tread where many more experienced directors have failed and take on the might of Godzilla.  And you know what?  For the most part he pulls it off.  What Edwards does best is to strike the right balance between the ample destruction and the people.  Where as Zack Snider’s destruction porn is all about falling building, Edwards makes it about the characters.  Where as Michael Bay reveals in explosions, Edwards reveals in human drama.  This doesn’t mean that the film doesn’t have it’s wham! Bam! moments – it does and in spades – but they mean something. So the story isn’t perfect and the film uses the ‘hint’ reveal a few too many times, but Godzilla does so much right that you can forgive it a few small issues.

Best Bit: Monster Smack down.

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Buy

If You Liked this Try: Pacific Rim, Jurassic Park, Monster

 


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Godzilla: King of The Monsters (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Godzilla: King of The Monsters (2019) – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Godzilla: King of The Monsters isn’t terrible.  It’s also just not that great.  I almost wish this had been a terrible Asylum style offering because at least that would have been entertaining.  Sadly Godzilla only manages being rather boring and average.  It’s muddy CGI monster fights muddy CGI monster (mostly in darkness) with little coherent plot or characters to care about.  Which is why I think this film would have been WAY better if they had thrown a few men in rubber suits and set them against each other WWE style.  At least then it would have been fun and held my attention longer than it did (by hour two I was starting to drift off). The cast deserve better, especially the talented Millie Bobby Brown who spends most of her time slack jawed or wide-eyed and the films odd habit of rolling out a ‘Oh it’s them’ actor cameo just gets distracting by the end (Joe Morton, David Strathairn and even the criminally underused Sally Hawkins).  So overall it’s not as good as Gareth Edward’s 2014’s Godzilla and both pail into compression with the original Japanese Godzilla films.

Best Bit: I guess the monsters doing stuff

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Godzilla (2014), Monsters, Kong: Skull Island 

 


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Podcast: Godzilla: King Of The Monsters (2019) – Phil’s InstaTake

Podcast: Godzilla: King Of The Monsters (2019) – Phil’s InstaTake

Ross and Phil Talk Movies The Podcasts

On this (solo) episode of the podcast Phil delivers his InstaTake on the latest Summer blockbuster – Godzilla: King Of The Monsters .  Who wins?  Who cares… Find out on this podcast!

Hosted by Phil Hobden.

Films Discussed: Godzilla: King Of The Monsters, Godzilla

For more on Ross Boyask search @RossBoyask on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook. Also check out @EvoFilmsUK online.

For more on Phil Hobden check out www.philhobden.co.uk , Twitter (@PhilQuickReview) and Instagram (RossAndPhilTalkMovies)

#RossAndPhil #RossAndPhilTalkMovies #MoviePodcasts #Podcasts

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Pacific Rim Uprising – A Quick Capsule Review

Pacific Rim Uprising – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
Pacific Rim 2 was meant to be pretty terrible.  After all I REALLY wasn’t a fan of the original and the trailers, cast and advanced buzz did very little to sell this sequel.  I guess then it was a pleasant surprise that Pacific Rim 2 actually turned out to be really good fun.  Okay it’s still rubbish for sure but it zips along, the action is watchable and the CGI decent.  Not every film has to be Goodfellas and there’s always a place for mindless fluff like this. Just don’t expect to remember too much after you leave.

Best Bit: Yaeger arrived  

Buy, Stream, Avoid: Stream

If You Liked this Try: Pacific Rim, Real Steel, Godzilla

Phil’s Top 5… Monster Movies!

Phil’s Top 5… Monster Movies!

Other Cr*p Top 5

Each week Phil, from Phil’s Quick Capsule Review, takes a look at a different movie or TV related Top Five.  This time out: Monster Movies!

 

Close but no cigar: King Kong (1933), Godzilla (1954), Cloverfiled, Troll Hunter, Lake Placid

5 – Tremors
Okay so not on the same par as many here, but Tremors was the monster movie done on a budget with a splatter of humour and a dollop of Kevin Bacon.  And it works.  Full of heart and charm, Tremors remains a gem of a movie.

4 – The Fly
Cronenberg does body horror better than most, and here Jeff Goldblum slowly turns into the horrific brundlefly after an scientific mix up.  It’s scary, it’s brutal, it’s brilliant.

3 – Alien
Alien is the monster movie set in space.  The unstoppable killer born from an egg, hatched in a chest and then released on an unarmed and (mostly) unsuspecting crew. And it’s good.  Really good.

2 – Jaws
Jaws was the perfect example of necessity being the mother of invention. Had everything gone to plan we’d have seen much more of Bruce the shark.  As it was the fault animatronics caused Spielberg to get creative and a legend was born.

1 – The Thing
Carpenter’s horror remake of sorts was a commercial flop on its release. But years later it’s not only considered a cult favourite but by many one of the best horror monster films of all time. Even today, years later, its almost perfect.

 

 

 

Blog: Monsters Dark Continent – A Quick Capsule Review

Blog: Monsters Dark Continent – A Quick Capsule Review

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review:
What a pleasant surprise.  After what was at best a lukewarm trailer Monsters: Dark Continent, the loose sequel to Gareth Edward’s indie hit Monsters, actually delivers a mostly impressive low-budget adrenaline filled war film that thrills, shocks and surprises in equal measure.  Much like Edward’s original though be warned: those expecting Godzilla style monster on monster (or human on monster) clashes will be sorely disappointed.  The monsters once again are very much background, with the war and human element pushed to the front.  What’s left is a little over long, a little unfocused but brutally raw and effective.  Not  perfect then, but much better than I expected.

Best Bit: War is hell, son.

Buy, Rent, Stream, Borrow: Rent

If You Liked this Try: Monsters, Black Hawk Down, Godzilla

 

Author: Phil Hobden

Phil’s 2015 Preview & Look Back At 2014 Predictions…

Phil’s 2015 Preview & Look Back At 2014 Predictions…

Quick Review

Phil’s Quick look at what’s wetting his whistle for the upcoming year in films… Yup 2015 is going to be a BIG year.

Most Excited:  Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Er of course.  What else could it be? Well probably the Avengers. or Mad max.  But actually it was always going toe Star Wars.  Even after the prequels tanked and Star Trek Into Darkness ended up being a bit of a let down, an intriguing teaser trailer and a promise of film more like the original trilogy has gotten my excitement levels peaking.  It could all still go very wrong BUT right now the signs look very good.

 

2. Avengers: Age Of Ultron
Come on did you REALLY expect anything else???  Avengers was blockbuster cinema at it’s best and so far Marvel haven’t put a foot wrong (even the ‘risky’ Guardians turned out to be a massive hit).  So the returning Joss Whedon, the additional of the excellent Elizabeth Olson, James Spader and Andy Sirkis, the fact it’s coming after probably the strongest run of Marvel film yet (Iron Man 3, Capt 2, Guardian’s) well it all means this one has VERY hight expectations attached.  Oh and judging by the trailer… it’s shouldn’t disappoint.

 

 

3. Mad Max: Fury Road
This is an odd one.  The trailer looks amazing. Tom Hardy is about as good as you can get in terms of replacing a peak Mel Gibson. And Miller has always been at his best with the Max films.  There is a BUT. And that But is it’s been forever since the last great Miller film.  And even longer since the last good Mad Max film.  BUT (again) the trailer is amazing and it IS Mad Max… so fingers (and toes) crossed.

 

 

4. Pitch Perfect 2
Oh fuck it. Come on Pitch Perfect was awesome fun. And if they go in with even a 10th of the same spirit and sense fun as they did with that film, this should be a winner.  The Pitch Is back.

 

 

5.  Bond 24
No trailer.  No story.  Pretty much no idea other than Mendes and Craig returning, alongside Skyfall alumni Whishaw, Fiennes and Harris.  Oh and Lea Seydoux.  And Christoph Waltz.  And… okay to be honest I was sold with Mendes.  Look Skyfall was probably one of the best Bond films ever.  And whilst it’s going to be hard to follow up, you kinda get the feeling if Mendes is back he has an idea.  And THAT should make this well worth a watch.  Oh and did I mention that pesky Blofeld rumour…

 

Bubbling Under: Mission Impossible 5 (At worst the last two MI films have been bloody good blockbusters), Ant Man (Could this be Marvels first flop… no), Minions Movie (It’s got Minions… ), American Sniper (Clint! Cooper! Guns!), Kingsmen The Secret Service (Great trailer! Great Cast! Great Director! ), Fast & Furious 7 (It’s still got lets), Magic Mike XXL (Magic Mike was ace), London has Fallen (Butler is back!  If it’s half as mad as part 1 it should be a hoot)

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Stinker Of The Year (Part 1): Terminator: Genisys
It pains me to say it but this just looks terrible.  A terrible title. Those horrid Entertainment Weekly cast shots. A reboot story.  An old Arnie T-800.  There’s just nothing that excited me about this film.  At all.

Stinker Of The Year (Part 2): Point Break
Fuck you Hollywood.  Point Break is about on of the most perfect action crimes films ever made. And you want to reboot it.  In the wold of ‘Extreme Sports’.  Yup Hollywood is creatively bankrupt and this is the proof.

Jupiter Ascending (They haven’t made a good film since The Matrix), Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension (Ugh… really?),  The Fantastic Four (Good director, bad cast), Fifty Shades Of Grey (Shooting fish in a barrel) , Jurassic World (Trailer didn’t grab me. ), Hunger Games, Insurgent, Maze Runner Sequels (The Teen Angst thing has dramatically run out of steam)

 

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So how did I do last year?

This is the time of the year when I look back at my picks of the good, the bad and the ugly from 2014 and see how close I was (or as it often is the case, how far!)…

For the Best:  I tipped X Men Days of Future Past, Godzilla, Interstellar, The Raid 2 and The Monuments Men as my Most Anticipated of 2014.  Well X-Men was a bit of a let down for me (although critically it was very well received).  Godzilla, Interstellar &  The Raid 2 were all very good, but with only Interstellar ending up near my top 5 films of the year. The Monuments Men flopped critically and commercially and whilst it wasn’t quite as bad as everyone thought it was a let down.

As for the Stinkers?  Well Transformers: Age Of Extinction ended up being one of the worst films I’ve ever seen.  But we all knew that even before the film was made.  So that was spot on then! Jupiter Ascending slipped to 2015 so is back on that list for next year and whilst  Need For Speed was bad Robocop wasn’tthe cluster fuck we all expected (although totally forgotten about by the time end of year rolled around), Expendables 3 was great fun probably the best of the 3 films (and the unrated cut delivered all the action the PG13 cut missed) and Noah ended up being EXACTLY as expected – dull, stupid and far too long.

 

So here’s to 2014… see you again next year!

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – 2014 Roundup Best & Worst Of The Year!

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – 2014 Roundup Best & Worst Of The Year!

A Blog Grosse Point Geek Uncategorized

As the year comes to a close, it has to be said that on reflection, 2014 has been pretty damn good for films. The summer blockbuster season produced one of the best sequels for ages in Dawn of The Planet of The Apes, we bade a fond farewell to Middle Earth with the release of the final Hobbit film and Marvel managed to do it again with the one two punch of both Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Guardians of The Galaxy. There was also the continued rise of some really exciting actors, specifically Richard Armitage (The Hobbit and Into the Storm) Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game) and Matthew McConaughey (just about everything).

It wasn’t all plain sailing though – Michael Bay managed to take a stinking robot sized dump on us all with the appalling Transformers: Age Of Extinction, Renny Harlin proved that Die Hard 2 and Cliff-hanger were but distant memories by giving us the risible Legend Of Hercules, and shockwaves went round Hollywood with the untimely deaths of both Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Robin Williams – both wonderful, talented actors who will be sorely missed.

So to business – now remember the following is only my opinion and doubtless a certain person (no names mentioned Hobden) will be in dire disagreement with me on most of it.

Read On.

 

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2014’s Top Ten Best Films (in no particular order):

  • The Wolf Of Wall Street – one of the most entertaining, profane and downright hilarious films since Pulp Fiction.
  • The Dallas Buyers Club – managed to be both heart-breaking and very funny with a brilliant academy award winning turn from Mathew McConaughey
  • Dawn Of The Planet of The Apes -really well made with amazing SFX, Andy Serkis’ astounding motion capture performance as lead ape Cesar and some exciting top notch action.
  • Captain America The Winter Soldier -incredibly entertaining and refreshingly different.
  • Guardians Of The Galaxy – utterly mental but so much good fun – damn clever too.
  • The Imitation Game – cracking film – If Cumberbatch doesn’t win an Oscar for this there’s simply no justice.
  • Fury -highly realistic, relentlessly exciting, and superbly acted – will stand the test of time as one of the best war movies ever made.
  • Interstellar -mind bending sci fi, outstanding SFX, great direction from Nolan and yet another amazing performance from McConaughey.
  • Gone Girl -great date movie, Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike were fantastic in the lead roles, and there was the usual rock solid direction from David Fincher. A must see.
  • The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies – certainly flawed and not as good as Return of The King, but still a cracking good movie, full to the brim with director Peter Jackson’s boundless imagination, epic battles and great acting (especially Richard Armitage as Thorin).

 

The Top Ten Honourable mentions

  • The Expendables 3 – daft as a brush, but absolutely huge fun, jam packed with fisticuffs, explosions and gunfights – plus Mel Gibson was a revelation as the villain.
  • Godzilla – Would have easily made the top ten best list if it hadn’t been for some very limp human characters and the criminal underuse of Brian Cranston. However it was exceptionally well directed by Blighty’s own Gareth Edwards and featured SFX and monster action that was frankly gobsmacking.
  • Maleficent – surprisingly lovely film, with real hidden depths and a wonderful performance from Angelina Jolie.
  • Pompeii – great action, good use of 3d that actually benefitted proceedings and a deliciously OTT Kiefer Sutherland as the chief Roman baddie.
  • Hercules – preposterous in just about every way you can think, but a rollicking good ride, featuring some top battles and good show from Dwayne Johnson.
  • Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit – Another fun film – Phil hated this, but I just couldn’t help liking it – hopefully there will be more.
  • 300: Rise Of An Empire – ridiculous prequel/equal/sequel to Zach Snyder’s 2006 original. Nary a shot was without a rippling torso, severed limb or a lot of shouting, and Gerard Butler was sorely missed – but despite this it managed to be extremely entertaining.
  • The Raid 2 – Another one that would have made the top ten best list – not quite as good as the first entry, a bit talky and at least 20 minutes too long, but the presence of the indestructible Iko Uwais, Gareth Evans sure handed direction and some bone crunching fight scenes made for a absolute corker of a film.
  • Lone Survivor – Peter Berg atones for Battleship, with the true story of four Special Forces commandos trapped behind enemy lines in Afghanistan. Featuring brutal action, a welcome absence of jingoistic American flag waving and some great acting – especially from Mark Wahlberg and Taylor Kitsch.
  • Edge Of Tomorrow – Basically Groundhog Day meets Aliens –but Cruise gets his best role for a long time, plus it was really well written, and all the set pieces were excellent.

 

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The 4 Most Overrated of 2014

  • X-Men: Days Of Future Past – With Bryan Singer back directing, I expected to be blown away by this one – but instead of a welcome return to the awesomeness of X2 and X-Men 1st Class, what we got was at times a very entertaining film, that sadly let itself down all too often by miring the audience in overly talky dialogue and overblown exposition. Not only that but the ending made no sense at all.
  • 22 Jump Street : The first one was well written and funny, this admittedly was good in places – especially when Ice Cube was on the screen – but was I the only one who thought it was just a rehash of the original film?
  • Lucy – On release this was a massive box office hit – however I am still trying to fathom out as to why. Ok Scarlett Johansson was pretty good in the title role, but the story was basically a rip off of Limitless and by the end got so preposterous that it stretched even my usual levels of tolerance.
  • Snowpiercer – Despite having a good first 40 minutes plus a great title, cast and setting – this one turned out to be a right let down. Mainly due to the fact that what should have been a slam bang post apocalyptic actioner ,turned out to be a rather boring arty farty oddity that had woefully disappeared up its own orifice by the time the credits had rolled.

 

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The Top Five Worst of 2014

  1. Transformers: Age of Extinction – There are not enough words in the English language to describe the utter unmitigated hatred I have for this steaming pile of celluloid ordure. There is just no excuse for a summer blockbuster about Robots fighting each other to be nearly 3 hours long, deathly dull, mind numbingly boring, badly written and offensive. Without doubt the worst film of 2014 and quite possibly of the last 10 years too. Shameful.
  1. The Legend Of Hercules – Laughably pants, with a balsa wood infused “performance” from Kellan Lutz, crap fights; terrible direction from Renny Harlin and editing that appears to have been done with a blunt machete. Avoid like the plague.
  1. Non Stop – how on earth an action movie starring Liam Neeson of all people can be this bad is beyond me. Dire.
  1. 3 Days To Kill – Despite a spirited central performance from Kevin Costner , this meandering Taken wannabe failed miserably on every level to be even remotely engaging and provided more evidence (if any was needed) that McG is one of the most inept directors working today.
  1. The Amazing Spiderman 2 – Overly bloated sequel with an oddly dislikeable performance from Andrew Garfield as Spidey, Jamie Foxx’s awful pantomime villain, zero story and dull action scenes – which all in all made for one of poorest superhero movies for a very long time.


Next Time: My Preview of 2015

 
Author: Will Strong 

 

Blog: Grosse Point Geek – Rapid Fire Reviews (Godzilla, 47 Ronin, Xmen and more!)

A Blog Grosse Point Geek Uncategorized

See below quick reviews of 11 films I have seen in the past couple of months… it’s Grosse Point Geek’s quick reviews!

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47 Ronin

Director: Carl Rinsch

Actors: Keanu Reeves

Dear God where to start with this one?? Delayed for ages, cost up to $225 million dollars to make, total flop on release. Combines SFX heavy fantasy with an (apparently) true story,  tries very hard to be Lord Of The Rings meets the Last Samurai – and fails miserably.  For a start Reeves is too old for the lead role and as a result  is massively out of his depth. The direction and production values are completely average with a story that drags on and on, there’s the occasional fight but they are so bloodless and standard that you just don’t care. A total  and utter waste of time and money.

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The Monuments Men

Director: George Clooney

Actors: George Clooney, Matt Damon,  Bill Murray

What should have been an action packed  cross between Oceans’ 11 and The Dirty Dozen turns out to be a right limp affair, that wastes a superb cast and an interesting story.

Well directed and acted but if Clooney had just gone for a straight out boys own adventure film, this would have been so much better. A wasted opportunity and very disappointing to boot.

Next time George, do better.

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X Men: Days Of Future Past

Director: Bryan Singer

Actors: Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellan, Halle Berry, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender

This one left me in a right pickle. On the positive side the story, direction, performances and writing are all excellent. However for long periods its just all talk and exposition. Fair enough  -the action sequences are great but there isn’t enough of them, the apocalyptic future setting is well staged – but again – there isn’t enough of it, the Quicksilver character is brilliant  – but maddeningly again  – there bloody well isn’t enough of him!

This had the potential to be as good if not better that X2 – but sadly wasnt  – overall the 4th best of the X franchise – worth seeing but prepare to be a bit bored in parts.

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The Mortal Instruments: City Of Bones

Director: Harold Zwart

Actors: Lily Collins, Jamie Campbell-Bower, Lena Heady

If I see another one of these sodding Young Adult film adaptations again I think I’ll scream! You know the drill –drippy teenage girl finds out something supernatural about herself, meets equally drippy, moody teenage boy who just so happens to be a warrior of some nature – blah! Blah! Blah!

Not completely boring, and granted there are a couple of good fight scenes but its 2 hours I’ll never get back  – recommended for rabid fans of the Twilight series only  – and if that’s you then don’t bother visiting this site ever again!

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Snowpiercer

Director: Boon Jong-Ho

Actors: Chris Evans, John Hurt, Jamie Bell, Tilda Swinton.

Apocalyptic actioner – very well directed with some great performances from Bell,  Evans and especially Swinton. However, when it should be hitting 1st gear, it frustratingly slows down and gets all weird and talky.

Shame really, as up until it slammed the brakes on, it was damn good.

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Warm Bodies

Director: Jonathan Levine

Actors: Nicholas Hoult, John Malkovich, Teresa Palmer

Cracking film, great fun, lots of heart and two smashing turns from both Hoult and Palmer. A must see for all fans of Shaun of The Dead and The Walking Dead. Highly recommended.

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A lonely Place To Die

Director: Julian Gilbey

Actors: Karel Roden, Sean Harris, Melissa George.

God-awful thriller – What I mistakenly assumed  would be a cross between The Descent, Cliffhanger and Wrong Turn  turned out to be an utterly pants film with zero tension and a preposterous plot……………..and will someone please tell Sean Harris that the persistently intense and moody acting he does every time, in every part I’ve ever seen him play  is wearing painfully bloody thin!

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Transcendence

Director: Wally Pfister

Actors: Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall, Paul Bettany.

Flopped on release with both audiences and critics. Personally I thought it was ok  – nothing special though. Bettany and Hall are both excellent but Depp is miscast. Good SFX and Pfister’s direction shows flair but to be honest the story is nothing we haven’t seen before in the likes of Tron and Lawnmower Man.

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The Amazing Spiderman 2

Director: Marc Webb

Actors: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Jamie Foxx

This one annoyed the hell out of me. The first ASM was ok and had two great central performances  – however the sequel is nothing more than an overblown,  SFX heavy, bloated monstrosity. Garfield is annoyingly smug, Foxx is pointless and pantomime, there’s zero plot and the action is generic and boring. Safe to say I absolutely hated this film with a vengeance – avoid at all costs.

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The Good, The Bad, The Weird

Director: Kim Jee Woon

Actors: Song Kang-ho, Lee Byung-hun, Jung Woo-Sung

Top film this. Korean action adventure from the director of The Last Stand. Packed with inventive set pieces, great production design and a mind blowing last 20 minutes  –  just about does everything right. Well worth a look

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Godzilla

Director: Gareth Evans

Actors: Bryan Cranston, Aaron Taylor-Johnson.

What this lacks in human characterisation, it makes up for in astounding SFX, incredible monster v monster action and stunning set pieces.

All memories of Emmerich’s 1998 disaster are mercifully banished by the genius that is Britain’s own Gareth Evans who brilliantly directs this cracking summer blockbuster.

Destined to be a classic and an absolute must see.

 

 
Author: Will Strong 

 

Will Strong’s Preview Of 2014…

Will Strong’s Preview Of 2014…

A Blog Grosse Point Geek Quick Review

Every year Phil and Will look at what’s grabbing their attention for 2014.   Here’s Will Strong’s pick for the films to look out for in 2014…

    1. Hobbit –There and Back again (cant wait!)
    2. Godzilla (trailer looks amazing)
    3. X Men Days of Future Past (could be brilliant, could be X Men 2 good or could be meh)
    4. Interstellar (Nolan needs to deliver here but will be interesting)
    5. Pompeii (looks fun and its P WS Anderson!)
    6. Robocop (could be very good – trailer is excellent – however the original was so good I cant see this being better )
    7. Hercules The Thracian Wars
    8. Expendables 3 – Gibson, Banderas, Stallone, Arnie, Snipes etc etc  – nuff said!
    9. Fury – sounds like it could be awesome
    10. The Monuments Men – looks very good and lots of fun
    11. Captain America The Winter Soldier – im worried about this one – could be ok but the directors are very untested and are we experiencing too much Marvel output at the moment?
    12. Guardians Of The Galaxy – this will ether be Star Wars meets the Avengers or John Carter meets Dune
    13. Sabotage – looks very action packed plus Arnie is in it
    14. Edge Of Tomorrow – could be very good
    15. The Raid 2  – this could be awesome but how do you top the original?????