Super Chat: Arrowverse Mid-Season Finale

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Ya’ll! I have some exciting news! So a while back, I was watching either “Supergirl” or “The Flash” on the CW. I always live tweet when I watch my shows because it’s so fun. So, I received a message, or a direct tweet in which someone asked me if I would like to be on her show, she told me a bit about it and I’m suspicious by nature, so I looked into her. She was legit. Just Jess hosts a show on WCCB, The CW for Charlotte, NC and she asked me to be on her show. I was super excited and I told everyone. I mean everyone I come in contact with everyday and most importantly close friends and family.
I was super excited but super nervous. Today being the day December 6, 2017, I knew I was nervous because my stomach was playing games. One of my best friends came down to be at the station with me, so thank you Tracey.
So basically, I met Jess, as well as the other guest, Wess and Jess gave us the rundown of her show and I was even more nervous but so excited. So we get started and I really tried to make sure I wouldn’t talk fast, Tracey would motion me if I got to fast lol, thanks.
I was so nervous that I kept moving, all of my energy was in my hands and in my feet. Thank goodness there was this huge block in front of my legs so you can’t see how much my feet were moving. I’m usually pretty still but I couldn’t contain myself. I know my hands moved a lot and I was like “girl calm down”.
So below, is the Meet Me part of the episode. It was filmed at the end but as you are meeting me and my fellow guest, it’s gonna be first. Please enjoy!
It was so much fun! I can’t wait to talk even more about these shows and I hope I receive the chance in the future to work with Jess again.

 

You can also read the article sharing the videos as well.
SUPER CHAT: THE FLASH AND SUPERGIRL MIDSEASON FINALES
Please enjoy these videos of the Super Chat and definitely check out the other videos on the YouTube page of Jess’s Super Chat videos!
Keep reading Speak Now Storyteller, don’t forget to like, comment and follow
Lastly, stay cool everyone!

 

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Lady Bird (2017) Review

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Summary: In the early 2000s, an artistically inclined seventeen year-old comes of age in Sacramento, California.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. I think this movie is filled with colorful characters. I think all of the cast is very good in this movie. I can’t say much about the characters without giving the movie away so I’ll do my best.
  • Saoirse Ronan as Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson. I always have to look up to see how old Saoirse Ronan is because I swear she’s been around forever but she’s only 23. She calls herself Lady Bird, and she’s a senior at a Catholic school. She wants to leave Sacramento and go to school on the East Coast. I wouldn’t say she’s particularly cynical but she does give off that feeling but at the same time, she feels like a dreamer. It’s interesting really, and it makes sense as she’s a teenager. LB deals with boys, with the whole thing of growing up, getting a job, learning about adulthood from her parents, and having to figure it out on her own. She is a strong and realistic character. I think Saoirse Ronan was great! Her delivery of this dialogue is perfect, she’s really funny but she’s also so emotional. Wow. The look from her eyes alone that shows she’s angry, or sad… the airport scene… watching her eyes was fantastic. She’s great.
  • Laurie Metcalf as Marion McPherson. First of all, she’s ANDY’S MOM FROM TOY STORY! I knew she sounded familiar. But she has a lot going on. She works in a clinic I believe, and she also works over the finances as she’s always talking about it. Marion seems to be unhappy with a lot and she’s a bit mean and negative towards her family, “bit” is an overstatement. Maybe she didn’t have a great life growing up, she does reference some of her history, which I think says a lot about how she is as an adult. I think Laurie Metcalf was great, she is sympathetic but at the same time you kind of want to hate her and you just might but it feels realistic.
Supporting Characters.
  • Lucas Hedges as Danny O’Neill. Danny is a student at Lady Bird’s school and Lady Bird first sees him at his audition for the school musical. She is immediately drawn to him. He is a good kid. He’s a bit… I don’t know, odd? But he’s sweet. He and Lady Bird have a relationship and he’s so happy… but he has his own problems that causes some issues but I think for this time period, his reaction was realistic. I remember Lucas Hedges in Manchester by the Sea and I thought he was great in that film and while his role is a small one, I think he plays Danny to be quite memorable. His first scene with Lady Bird alone was a great scene.
  • Beanie Feldstein as Julianne “Julie” Steffans. Julie is Lady Bird’s best friend, she seems to be the “happy” friend compared to Lady Bird who is a bit more… all over the place. She is smart and talented where she gets a lot of recognition and it creates some interesting conversations. I thought she was sweet and of course like a lot of coming of age movies, she does get pushed to the back burner by her best friend but she’s a true friend. I’ve never seen Beanie Feldstein in anything, but she’s likable in her role and she even has some emotional moments where you understand it from her viewpoint.
  • Tracy Letts as Larry McPherson. Lady Bird’s father. He’s a bit closer to her than her mom is. He works with her on her secrets, with secrets of his own, but he’s supportive for the most part. He has great fatherly moments with Lady Bird.
  • Timothee Chalamet as Kyle Scheible. LB first sees him while he’s performing with his band, well at least this is the first time she looks at him and think he’s cute. He’s that mysterious type, plays an instrument, reads a lot (I think the same book though), and always talking about how he’s against the system etc. He’s a cutie and it’s easy to see where his role goes with LB. The young actor though is good in his role.
There are many other characters as well, a lot of students that Lady Bird comes into contact with, most especially Odeya Rush as Jenna Walton and the professors such as Jake McDorman as Mr. Bruno, Stephen Henderson as Father Leviatch, and Lois Smith as Sister Sarah Joan. All of the acting is top-notch.
The Music. Jon Brion composes the music in this film and I think it has a subtle beauty to it. The film is set in the early 2000s, I think 2002, and the music fits. There’s even a bit of Justin Timberlake’s “Cry Me A River” during a party. But during emotional points, the music is very emotional and soft. I also love how towards the end, it swells but it doesn’t overpower the film.
The Time Period. This film is very much a coming of age film and I think it works so perfectly in this time period. It has this perfect balance of feeling “dated” but also feeling “fresh” and “up to date”. It’s easy to tell that it’s not a film set in the present but the issues swirling in this movie, with the family, within Lady Bird herself, is timeless. It has a timeless feel to it which just fits the movie.
The Story. This is at its core a “coming of age” story and it’s beautiful. Christine calls herself “Lady Bird” and she is determined for people to call her that as well. She has a strained relationship with her parents, her relationship with her father is stronger than the other with her mother but it’s easy to tell that there is a bit of strain there too. But it’s the relationship between Lady Bird and her mom where this film really gets involved. The entire family seems to have strain. Lady Bird has her father drop her off a block from school, she argues constantly with her brother (who I’m assuming is adopted), and her relationship with her mother is a roller coaster where at times they seem to get along but then someone says something and it turns into an argument. A perfect example of this is the scene in the thrift shop with how they’re arguing and it immediately switches to them agreeing. It was great. The film also deals with Lady Bird’s want to go to college away from home, far away and her struggle with how to deal with that. She has a best friend in Julie and it seems that they have a hiccup as well. There are also boys. This film hits every note really and it does it in a way that doesn’t feel cliché but has a natural flow. It shows that scariness of leaving childhood and going into adulthood.
Quirky/Great Dialogue. This is definitely a quirky movie. The dialogue is smart, funny but it’s not over the top. The situations are the same, everything that happens feel like it could happen and I’m sure have happened to some people. Lady Bird’s problems are things that teenagers have to face growing up, but the movie doesn’t make her look overly stupid, overly emotional or make it “too smart” where some people can’t enjoy it. It kind of has a Wes Anderson feel sometimes but this is Greta Gerwig’s directorial debut and she also wrote the film. It’s great. The movie also has great dialogue. You know how there are times when stories written for teenagers make them sound older than what they are, make them sound pretentious or they’re trying to sound quirky? This movie doesn’t do that. The dialogue is funny, is holds weight and it’s just so good.
The Emotional Weight. This movie is emotional, but it’s not “hit you over the head” emotional nor does it feel like I’m being manipulated into being emotional. Anyone could pick a plot point out of the movie and connect with it. This movie had me in tears throughout. It wasn’t consistently emotional but there were many times where I just sat there in tears. Every scene with her mother is emotional in some way but there are three or four scenes in particular that I thought were the best scenes in the movie.
  • The Prom Dress Scene. Just the conversation between Lady Bird and her mom while shopping for a wedding dress. I think many daughters and mother’s have this conversation and it’s very interesting to see just how negative her mom is or can be, even without trying to.
  • The Kitchen Scene. This happens before the airport scene but Lady’s Bird mom finds out about something and Lady Bird is talking to her in the kitchen and it’s a lot. It’s a beautiful, gut-punching, heart wrenching scene.
  • The Airport Scene. This scene is mostly quiet, it’s just Lady Bird, her mom and dad drying in the car and her mom is not speaking to her after a decision Lady Bird made. So I won’t go any further, but seeing the emotions on Lady Bird’s face when she sees that her mother won’t even look at her, and then later the emotions that move across her mother’s face. Oh man, I was in tears.
  • The Ending. It’s literally like a narration and some quiet scenes… beautiful.
Cons:
Random Side Plots. There isn’t a lot of this going on but one most notably, I thought was weird, but it doesn’t affect the movie really, I just wanted to comment on it, was that there is a storyline with Father Leviatch and we don’t really know what’s going on and I think that’s fine. But later, there’s a scene between him and Mrs. McPherson that I thought was random as nothing happens afterwards. We never hear about it again and I just thought it was strange that it was even in the movie.
Overall, I loved this movie. It’s perfect. I don’t have any problem with it minus that one thing that doesn’t affect the movie at all. I think all of the acting is superb by everyone in this movie, even the supporting (minor) characters. Saoirse Ronan is a strong lead in this film and her mother Laurie Metcalf is fantastic right alongside her. The music fits the film with its subtle nature, the story line is a true story, that doesn’t try to be more than what it is, but it also feels authentic and real. This movie is fantastic.
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars. 
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Have you seen Lady Bird? Are you interested? No? You should be.
Answer my question: What is your favorite coming of age film? 
Let me know in the comments! Don’t forget to like, and follow this blog for more reviews among other things!

Wonder (2017) Review

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Summary: Based on the New York Times bestseller, WONDER tells the incredibly inspiring and heartwarming story of August Pullman, a boy with facial differences who enters fifth grade, attending a mainstream elementary school for the first time.
So I read the book for class, so I was able to think about that a lot while watching the movie. There are some differences but I think overall this movie was a solid adaptation of the book. I liked the book but not as much as other people have, it was just good. I actually liked the movie more. But anyways… I tried not to let the book get in the way too much it’s hard when the book is so fresh. ONWARDS!
Pros:
Cast and Characters.
  • Jacob Tremblay as Auggie Pullman. Auggie was born with Treacher Collins syndrome (look it up). He is a 10-year-old boy and the movie begins with him getting ready to go to public school, the 5th grade. He’s never been to school before and he’s not very happy about it, but as time goes on, and he begins to make friends, he loves school (even though he’s still mad his mom sometimes for making him go) and I like Auggie for the most part. I think Jacob Tremblay was a great choice for this character as he has this way of being so cute, likable and also a bit annoying lol. I mean, Auggie is a kid but he’s also a bit spoiled considering he’s been the center of attention all of his life. I liked the fact that Auggie had this thing where he could tell a lot about a person by looking at their shoes… shows that he’s human and a kid. He may have dealt with a lot, but he’s still a kid. He’s whiny, he’s spoiled but he’s loyal, and funny, and he loves Star Wars (just like Jacob) and it’s clear he loves his family, including his dog Daisy. Auggie is a great kid, and he is a KID and I think sometimes people forget that about him when reading the book or watching the movie, he’s still a kid. He’s not going to perfect and I think this movie did a good job at that, showing that he does have a little smart mouth, that he too can judge people. He felt like a kid. Jacob Tremblay is great and I can’t wait to see more from as he gets older.
  • Julia Roberts as Isabel Pullman. She is Auggie’s mother. Isabel is a superwoman, she has home-schooled Auggie and has dealt with the stress and pain of him having many surgeries. She has her faults and I think she recognizes them mostly when it comes to her daughter but for the most part, she’s a good mom. She wants Auggie to fit in at school, she wants him to have friends and be comfortable but it’s easy to tell that she has a hard time with it, even though it was her idea. I thought Julia Roberts was great, she had great chemistry with Jacob Tremblay, great with Owen Wilson and Izabela Vidovic. She felt like a mom, a wife, and the strong backbone of this family. She has some great funny lines and moments and she, of course, has great delivery.
  • Owen Wilson as Nate Pullman. Auggie’s father and a bit of a comedian. Nate is the dad who is cool, but it’s not “in your face cool”, he just is and I think Owen Wilson has a good balance of being a bit of a dork and being cool that it works out well for him. I loved the scene at the end with him and Auggie, it was emotional and sweet.
  • Izabela Vidovic as Olivia “Via” Pullman. Auggie’s sister and probably one of my favorite characters because I can relate in ways. She is in high school and it’s her first day as well but her parents are more worried about Auggie, she feels overshadowed due to her brother’s difference. She doesn’t love him any less, she doesn’t hate him but she is a teenager and it does bother her to the point where she lies to the cute boy about being an only child. She just wants the focus for once. I saw Izabela Vidocic play a young Kara Danvers in Supergirl and I thought she was good there, she’s really good here too. Very sympathetic and emotional.
Supporting Characters.
  • Daveed Diggs as Mr. Browne. It’s so great to see him in a movie! He plays Auggie’s English and homeroom teacher. He is a quirky guy but he’s kind, and I love how he interacted with the kids, especially Auggie. There’s a great moment during a school picture and I love what he did. I thought Daveed did very well, he didn’t overdo it. He didn’t feel like a Broadway actor trying to be a movie actor (they can overdo it sometimes). He works in the movie and plus, he’s beautiful lol.
  • Noah Jupe as Jack Will. I loved this kid. I liked him in the book too, but he first meets Auggie when he and two other students are charged with showing Auggie around the school before the term starts. He starts off really quiet and observant, just watching Auggie and he even stands up for him a few times in the beginning. Jack is the kid who struggles with what he should do, he doesn’t want to be treated badly for being nice to Auggie but at the same time, he doesn’t want to be mean to Auggie either. He does end up becoming Auggie’s best friend and their friendship is a strong part. I just discovered that Noah Jupe is British and I wouldn’t have known that from his role in the movie, he does an American accent so well. I was a little worried about him at first because he would overdo some stuff, but as the movie went on, he just felt more natural in his role.
  • Millie Davis as Summer. Summer is sweet, she watches Auggie for a while and it’s easy to tell that she struggles with what she should do but when she decides to be his friend, they become fast friends. She’s also loyal to him. It’s sweet. Millie Davis was good, but I did think she was a bit too over the top sometimes but otherwise, she was good.
  • Bryce Gheisar as Julian. This kid… I didn’t like him in the book and I didn’t like him here either. He was the main bully. I don’t think he was as bad as he was in the book, at least that I remember, but after meeting his parents, it was easy to see where he gets it from. Bryce Gheisar did a good job but he manages to have these weepy eyes that make you feel a bit bad for him… sometimes.
Auggie and Jack’s Friendship. I thought this was a strong part of the book, and it’s a strong part of the movie. In the beginning, Jack is with Julian and Charlotte to show Auggie around, he is the nicer of the two boys and he immediately, while at school, goes to sit with him at lunch. Of course, something does happen that breaks them apart, but it’s easy to tell that Jack really does like Auggie and wants to be his friend. Their loyalty to each other is quite astounding, yes they have a snag in there, but they were both so affected by it that you know it’s true friendship.
The Pullman Family. The family dynamic is also a big one. Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson have never done a movie together before, but they felt like a married couple and I thought they had good chemistry with each other. I also loved the relationship between Via and Auggie, her section is probably one of my favorite sections of the book and movie and it’s clear she loves her little brother, she holds no ill will towards him, but she does feel overshadowed, like a child with a “sick” sibling would. The four of them together also worked really well. They felt like a family.
The Directing. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw that Stephen Chbosky (Perks of being a Wallflower) directed and helped write the script for this movie. I think he did such a great job adapting Perks (he wrote the book) into a movie (he directed the movie) that it makes sense that he was as close to the book with this movie as possible. I loved a lot of the transitions in the movie, and I loved how it looked or how certain things were shot. I didn’t care for the breaking up of the parts, but I loved the little additions of the astronaut as what Auggie’s wants and sees himself as.
The Music. Marcelo Zarvos composes the music for the movie and I liked it quite a bit. It has a whimsical feeling to it.
The Story. I think the story has a lot of different layers going on. It has Auggie’s story of feeling accepted and learning how to accept his difference, his parents in how they deal with their children, Auggie’s sister Via having to find her own way, and the other kids in deciding to be kind. At its core, it’s a story about acceptance for everyone involved. It’s a sweet story. It also handles bullying, something that has always plagued schools, even adults, and this movie really hits on that. It’s also a story about family.
Heartwarming. This is a sweet movie. The Pullman family feel like a real family, with everyone having their own worries, their own struggles, especially Via. Also, watching the kids become friends, and seeing Auggie’s struggles and emotional roller coasters, and even learning a bit into other people’s lives, it’s one of those movies that makes you feel good overall.
Cons:
Long. Boy, this movie feels soooo long. It’s just under two hours and it feels like it just kept going on. I can’t imagine really young kids really sitting through this. At some point, it felt like the movie should have ended (I felt the same way about the book) and it just kept going and I was like “oh yeah, I forgot they had some more drama to go”. I really think the structure of the storytelling doesn’t do it a lot of favors and without doing it just like the book, might have helped it.
Summer’s Character. I do think it’s sad to note that Summer’s character was greatly underused in the movie compared to the book. I’m all for Auggie and Jack’s friendship but Summer was technically the first friend, they did a lot together. The movie brushes over her. We don’t meet her family, she doesn’t do the science project with Auggie, she hardly says much as the movie goes on after their first meeting and the first couple of times she talks to Jack. It was kind of odd. I liked her in the book, she was one of my favorite characters, so it was sad and disappointing that her character was so minimized in the movie.
The Kid Actors. So I don’t want to condemn all of the kids in the movie, but lord, mostly at the beginning of the movie, they weren’t very good. I think most notably Bryce Gheisar  (Julian), it was just so cringy. Even Elle McKinnon (Charlotte) was a bit too much at times. I mean, they’re kids so I want to give them a past but it’s so obvious. There is one particular part where Summer (Millie Davis) is talking to Auggie and he’s accusing her and she gets all emotional about it, but it was really bad acting lol. While I love Jacob Tremblay, he even suffers from a bit of overacting. Yes, they’re kids but I’ve seen that kid do something AMAZING in Room so, it was just odd to me.
The Emotion/The Story. So I didn’t want to necessarily call this movie “emotionally manipulative” like I have seen from critics of the book and by extension the book, but there is something about this movie (and the book) that I don’t really like. While kids are bullies and do terrible things, it just felt over dramatic to the point of ridiculousness, especially the scene in the forest towards the end. It seems to make me want to cry, it’s trying to make me cry at parts and it feels like it’s trying way too hard to make me cry. The scene at the end did make me tear up but that felt organic where at other times, it felt insincere.
Set up like a book. So in the book, there are parts in which certain characters get to have a point of view and we learn more about them. In the movie, they do the same thing. There are parts where character’s names come up on-screen “Auggie”, “Via”, “Jack Will”, “Miranda” and we get to see a bit more into their lives. While in the book that works, I don’t think that really works in the movie. I don’t mind when timelines aren’t linear and you have to go back to see what happened to someone before but it just flowed weirdly in the movie. They were obviously trying to follow the book and it is a unique thing but it just makes the movie feel even longer. I also understand why Miranda’s part was involved, just like in the book, but I think it’s unnecessary from a story standpoint. They cut out Justin’s point of view, they should have cut Miranda’s as well.
Overall, I liked Wonder for the most part. It’s a nice family movie and it has it’s messages and important plot points to pull from it. I thought the acting was great, the music was beautiful, and whimsical, especially during the scenes with Auggie daydreaming. I loved how the film looked and it’s a very strong adaptation of the book, I was able to think “oh yeah that’s straight from the book”. I thought the friendship between Auggie and Jack Will was a very strong element, both young boys did a great job portraying the growth of the friendship. The Pullman family was also a great relationship portrayed on screen. However, I do have some gripes with the film. I do think the kid acting from supporting characters comes off a bit over the top, or hokey and I want to give them a pass because they’re kids, but it’s pretty annoying so I can’t really. Half a pass. I think the movie tries too hard to be like the book that while it’s a good adaptation, it makes the movie feel too long, and drawn out with some of the pacings. It also tries to take the structure of the book and I don’t think it works as well as it does with a book. I also think the movie tries a too hard to get tears from viewers, I’m a crier in general but I didn’t feel any of the emotion it was trying to make me feel until maybe one or two parts at the end. I think Wonder from book to movie is solid, and I think kids who loved the book will love the fact that it’s a movie. If you didn’t like the book, I doubt you would like the movie much but again, the acting is great. I liked the movie more than the book because of the acting from the main cast.
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars. 
Have you seen Wonder? Have you read the book? Do you think it’s a good movie adaptation?
Also, answer my question, what is your favorite movie that was adapted from a book?
Let me know your thoughts in the comments! Don’t forget to like and follow this blog for more!

Coco (2017) Review

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Summary: Aspiring musician Miguel, confronted with his family’s ancestral ban on music, enters the Land of the Dead to work out the mystery.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. There are a lot of characters in this film, but I’m not going to go over all of them. Just the two main characters and some of the supporting because of their roles in the film. Just know that all of the characters are bright, colorful and likable!
  • Anthony Gonzalez as Miguel Rivera. He is a 12-year-old aspiring musician. He feels out-of-place in his family of shoemakers. He doesn’t want to be stuck in this mundane process that his family is stuck in. They have banned music and he doesn’t understand this, at least in a way that keeps him from loving music. Miguel wants to be a musician and he finds ways to protect his love. What I loved about Miguel is that he felt like a kid. He made his mistakes. He acts like a kid. When he decides to steal a guitar in order to play for the talent show, he faces the consequences of his actions… then he gets a second chance… and he steals the guitar again. That’s hilarious and so accurate. He is clever, he’s funny and determined. Miguel knows what he wants and he does what he can to go after it, and even as the story continues and things are discovered, he rolls with it. Anthony Gonzalez was great, he reminded me of Auli’i Cravalho as Moana in how she sat in her character, he did the same thing with Miguel. I really enjoyed his energy for this character. Plus, he has a great singing voice on him.
  • Gael García Bernal as Hector. He is a charming trickster in the Land of the Dead. When we first meet him, he’s trying to make it through customs (they have a whole system it’s great lol), by pretending to be a celebrity and it’s revealed that he tries to sneak over the bridge every year. So, when he meets Miguel, he enlists his help in order to actually make it over the bridge at some point. Hector is a charming character and a lot is revealed about him that turns him into a tragic character as well. He was probably my favorite character in the movie. At times he seems very selfish, or like he can’t be trusted and there’s more to him that makes him relatable and you can’t help but to feel bad for him. I’ve never seen Gael Garcia Bernal in anything, I saw one but I don’t remember him in it and it’s been so long, but I really liked his voice. He’s very charming and he helps Hector be likable and tragic at the same time. Also, he has a nice singing voice.

Supporting Characters.

  • Benjamin Bratt as Ernesto de la Cruz. The most famous musician in the history of Mexico. He is also Miguel’s idol, he’s the reason why he wants to be a musician. He even inspires Miguel to build a guitar that looks just like his. He has many fans around the world, but his untimely death (lol it’s hilarious) puts him in the Land of the Dead, but he’s even more beloved there due to his charm and charisma. I definitely can’t give anything away with him, but it all makes sense once you watch the film. I like Benjamin Bratt and his voice is great for this character. The larger than life personality, the charisma, and even the ego, just works. Bratt only sings Remember Me in the film, while Antonio Sol does the singing at other times in the film.
  • Alanna Ubach as Mama Imelda. She is Miguel’s great-great-grandmother. The ban on music started with her. There is a lovely opening scene in which Miguel tells the story of her life and how her heart was broken. Due to her husband choosing music over her and their child (Coco), she dedicates her life to creating roots for her family. A shoemaking business. Mama Imelda is a businesswoman and she protects her family. Even when Miguel ends up in the Land of the Dead, she does whatever it takes to help him. Alanna Ubach (she was Maria in Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit and she’s in Legally Blonde) is great! I loved her voice for this character. She is just the right balance of maturity, fierce determination (Miguel obviously gets it from her) and love for her family. She has a great song during the climax of the film.
  • Other Characters. Most of the other characters are Miguel’s family. Most notably, Renee Victor as Abuelita Elena, she is Miguel’s grandmother and she takes after Mama Imelda in that she strongly enforces the ban on music. She’s funny and a bit extreme. Ana Ofelia Murguia as Mama Coco and she gives us a very emotional performance anytime Mama Coco actually speaks. She is Miguel’s great-grandmother. His parents, his family in the Land are all great and colorful characters!
The Look of the Film. Oh man! Pixar is amazing! The look of this film is so beautiful! The colors! Oh wow! The Land of the Dead is so beautiful. The flowers are so vibrant and beautiful, and useful in the story. The way the skeletons look in how there are little-engraved designs in the faces, they look like the masks or the painted skull faces which was a nice touch. The world that is created is inviting and beautiful. Even when Miguel sees it for the first time, my eyes were huge. It’s a feast for the eyes. I want to go and see it for myself, but ya know as a visitor, not a permanent resident. Plus, the attention to detail on the little city of Santa Cecilia is also beautiful, it feels like a real place and while I don’t know much about Dia de Muertos, but I like how the graveyard where families would leave offerings for their families looked like how I’ve seen them before.
The Story. I think this movie created a way for kids to process death. It’s a way in that it’s  spirited and touching. At the center, the movie is about family, connection, culture and of course following your heart in a way that doesn’t compromise who you are. It doesn’t feel overly complicated but it also isn’t just a simple story that it feels elementary or childish. It has its twist and turns and it’s emotional. The story can be felt by everyone.
The Music. So I’m listening to the soundtrack while I write this because I didn’t really remember it after leaving the theater minus a few sung songs because of the accompanying scene. Listening to it, the songs I liked in the scenes are still good songs. Germaine Franco, Adrian Molina, Robert and Kristen Anderson-Lopez (The Lopez’s wrote the music in Frozen) wrote the songs and Michael Giacchino composed the score. I liked Hector’s lullaby and “Everyone Knows Juanita” because it’s cute and the scene is emotional. “Un Poco Loco” is probably my favorite in the film because Anthony Gonzalez and Gael Garcia Bernal have so much fun in that song and its super cute! “Proud Corazon” is also a great song for the ending of the film. As I mentioned before Mama Imelda’s song during the climax is also great, it’s in Spanish “La Llorona” and the scene is great.
Emotional. There may be light spoilers here. Just like any Pixar movie or Disney affiliated, they love to add the emotions. I’m also an emotional person these days, but I teared up a lot and I think I full on cried towards the end of the film. I have a big family so that definitely connected with me. One of the big things for the people in the Land of the Dead is that they can only remain there as long as their living family continues to put their pictures up on their ofrenda (alter). The living must also continue to share with their children about their ancestors so their stories can continue to live on. If that does not happen, then the spirit is considered a “forgotten”, and they have a “Final death” in that their spirit completely moves on because they have no connection anymore. That kind of stuff is emotional. Plus, Miguel’s reactions to seeing that happen to people he may have just met were also emotional. A scene after the climax is emotional, I cried. I teared up when Hector sang his lullaby. Then the scene towards the end when Miguel sings Remember Me made me cry. So…if you’re a crier, expect to cry. If you’re not a crier, that’s fine, just know the movie will still get you in the feels.
Cons:
Not Enough Music. I don’t think there is enough of it in a movie about becoming a musician. I don’t think it needed to be a musical or anything, but the music was pretty spare. It’s a nitpick but something I noticed.
Lags/Feels Slow. In some parts of the film, it feels like it just lags for a moment and I did pull my phone out during those few times, it’s not boring but it definitely feels like the pace slows down and that makes it feel longer than it should and it’s not that long, it’s barely two hours.
Overall, I really loved Coco! I think Pixar has done it again. This movie has heart, it has a strong story, strong leading characters, great supporting characters. Everyone is well-developed and feel like a real family. I definitely don’t want to spoil anything but the title is very important. The film is beautiful with how it looks. Everything is so vibrant and colorful! The songs are fun and accompany their scene well, even listening to the soundtrack, I can’t help but love them on their own. Anthony Gonzalez and Gael Garcia Bernal were great in their roles and had great chemistry with each other. It’s emotional as well and focuses on family, culture, and connection. It has a few flaws in that mostly it lags a bit making it feel slow in places and a minor nitpick with it not having enough music from the characters. Otherwise, I think Coco is a great family film, or see it by yourself and have a nice treat of a sweet movie!
Rating: 4.49 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Coco? Are you interested?
So tell me: What is your favorite Pixar movie??
Comment below and let me know your thoughts and your answer to my question!
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Justice League (2017) Review

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Summary: Fueled by his restored faith in humanity and inspired by Superman’s selfless act, Bruce Wayne enlists the help of his newfound ally, Diana Prince, to face an even greater enemy.
So I’m going to say that I wasn’t necessary excited for this movie as the other DC movies haven’t been very good outside of Woman Woman which I liked enough. So, WW set the bar high and I was more interested in seeing Jason Mamoa as Aquaman to see his take on it, and to see Ezra Miller as The Flash SINCE I LOVE EZRA MILLER and I love The Flash. So I was excited to see them. But anyway, on to the review.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. I think one of the best things this movie has going for it is that the cast is good, they have pretty good chemistry with each other and they’re all fun.
  • Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne / Batman: A wealthy socialite and owner of Wayne Enterprises who also dresses up like a bat and protects Gotham City from criminals. He is a highly trained, a masked vigilante equipped with a lot of tools and weapons. In this film Bruce spots a parademon and makes it his mission to try to recruit the others to help fight as Superman died. I mean, Bruce is Bruce, Batman is Batman. I think Ben Affleck is a good choice for both characters. Being this older version of the character, he’s even more jaded than usual but at the same time, weirdly optimistic. I think he does a good job in understanding the character at this point in his life. I appreciate that he doesn’t growl when he talks as Batman but he does mumble since he talks through his teeth.
  • Gal Gadot as Diana Prince / Wonder Woman: Diana is a antiquities dealer, an immortal Amazonian warrior and the crown princess of Themyscira. She has superhuman abilities and is awesome. She is very different from the Diana we knew and loved from her solo outing, she’s still hurt and angry from the events that happened there and it shows because she isn’t nearly as eyes wide open as she was before, that also has to do with the fact that she’s been around for years. Diana is still trying to find her footing even though she helps whenever she’s needed. In this film, she works with Bruce, but she also opposes a lot of his theories and she basically is the one who understands the most what’s going on, as she keeps telling us. Gal Gadot is still great in her role, I love her facial expressions when she’s fighting, and when she’s enjoying whatever fight she’s in.
  • Ezra Miller as Barry Allen / Flash: In this film, I believe Barry is probably about 20 as he’s a University student. We first meet him when he’s speaking with his father in prison and it’s easy to tell that this sort of thing still bothers him, but as we get to meet him more, we find that he is a bit awkward, likes to crack jokes and obviously the youngest of the group. I liked his energy throughout the movie, he was funny, he was always smiling and I think Ezra Miller has really good comedic timing. I mean I get why people wouldn’t like him but I loved him and I can’t wait to see his solo movie. He was definitely the comic relief in the movie. I also liked the little extra things he would do for the role, like whenever he got ready to run, he would do a yoga pose, or he would breath deeply to prepare. I also enjoyed how when he was hungry as he burns a lot of calories that he would affect his body posture and facial expressions to show it.
  • Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry / Aquaman: He is a meta-human with aquatic abilities and superhuman physical attributes due to his Atlantean physiology. He’s been a Good Samaritan to the people in a small town that lives on the water. He likes his alcohol and he’s super cool with all of his tattoos (good use of Momoa’s personal tattoos honestly) and it’s easy to tell that he’s distrustful of most people he doesn’t know. I liked that about him because it shows that something may have happened with him. I think Jason Momoa definitely enjoyed this role because he was able to be strong, funny and have fun. Whenever he was fighting, he would do “yahoo!” and I loved how he would comment about Bruce being dressed as a giant bat. He was totally a bro, but a likable bro lol.
  • Ray Fisher as Victor Stone / Cyborg: A former college athlete, and a genius who gets into a car accident that nearly kills him. His father uses technology to reconstruct his body giving him abilities that allow him to fly, turn his arms into cannons and manipulate technology. Victor has to deal a lot with his struggle of his humanity and if he is still a human even though he’s mostly machine. I like that he has to deal with that throughout the movie before having to decide whether or not he comes to term with it. I liked Ray Fisher enough, I didn’t think he was the most memorable of the team but I didn’t think he was bad or anything, he was okay. He’s so handsome lol.
Supporting Characters. I was going to go through the supporting characters but I realized that they’re not very important at least to this movie. Sure, Jeremy Iron as Alfred is great just as he was in BvS. Amy Adams returns as Lois Lane and she’s not in the film very long, she’s there to serve a plot point and that’s about it, same to be said for Diane Lane as Martha Kent. I guess outside of Alfred, Joe Morton as Silas Stone is probably the most important side character but that’s mostly because of his connection to the plot lol.
The Humor. I think the movie is funny, it has a lot of moments where I just cracked up because the characters, mostly Aquaman and Flash, had a lot of great lines, or interactions with other characters. I love how Barry tried to fist bump Victor and he would never do it. Or Aquaman’s reactions to the plan that Bruce had, or just most of his expressions. I don’t think every joke lands BUT I think a lot of them do that helps the movie from feeling slow and boring.
The Flash’s Effects. I will go into this more later, but I do think that The Flash’s effects were cool. I liked how they tried to distinguish this version’s lightning effects to be different with the blue instead of the red/yellow. It’s different and I thought the colors were pleasing in the film.
The Action. Not all of the action works but there are some great moments in the film. Steppenwolf goes to Themyscira and fights the Amazon, that entire scene was great! It was great to see the Amazons again and see them be awesome! There is also a fight in the middle of the film, I thought that fight was much better than the one at the end, I would have been fine if the movie focused on that storyline instead but that fight was really cool. Also Wonder Woman’s first fight scene in the museum (?) was AWESOME, that felt like it was right outside of a comic book.
Cons:
The Villain. Oh boy, this dude was so generic that anytime he showed up, I was like “oh yeah, you are the villain trying to do something for Darksied” meh. I don’t even think they mentioned Darksied again so if you missed it when he said it, you will absolutely no idea what he is trying to do. He wants to destroy and change the planet. Okay, but for what? No one ever really talks about it again other than the fact that it’s BAD! He was just a big villain with his “gross” minions and I wasn’t at all worried for anyone, or at all scared of him. I mean, of course he’s a movie villain, but I didn’t think he struck up any type of fear in anyone. Which leads me into my next point.
The Story. It was really weak. I mean, I felt there weren’t any stakes. Again, there is too much going on in this story. I wanted to give a lot more bullet points for this but I’ll just put it here since it all has to do with the story.
  • No stakes. I wasn’t worried about anything going on in this movie, other than the fight in the middle when Arthur, Victor, Diana and Barry all show up to see if Bruce’s plan worked, I didn’t think they had anything to worry about really. Whatever threat they wanted to build up, just didn’t build up. Diana just kept saying over and over that it was dangerous but it didn’t seem that way other than her saying it.
  • The emotional weight. There were a few moments of emotional weight that SHOULD have hit but didn’t and I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that we’re really just meeting Arthur, Victor and Barry in this movie and we know nothing about them in this particular world/universe. Barry’s moments with his father in jail are always emotional moments and I think Ezra Miller’s and Billy Crudup’s emotional abilities were wasted in that scene as it felt forced in there. Victor’s struggle with his humanity was nice and it helped give him something to do in the first half of the movie, but honestly, a solo movie or something before this would have helped with that. Also, Mera and Arthur have a talk after Steppenwolf fights them in Atlantis and I know what they were talking about to an extent but I also didn’t care.
  • The plot. I mean who cares. Steppenwolf comes back because Superman is dead, and tries to go after these Mother Boxes to remake the world. Okay. Again, why exactly? He really only says it once. Again, they suffer from too much going on and not knowing how to balance it all for me to truly care.
The Characters. Don’t get me wrong, I liked them. But I also thought that there wasn’t really much to them, story wise. I think the actors worked with what they were given.  When I tried to go back over the characters, I realized that they were kind of shallow. There were moments when Bruce made me think of Bruce from Injustice but it was inconsistent. I thought Diana was very different and for some reason they definitely played up her being a woman more (the shots of her butt, people commenting on how pretty she is… take more notes from her solo movie please), and I get that she’s a different person than she was in her movie, but that is what makes her interesting. Victor has his humanity struggles and his connection to the Mother Boxes but I don’t think they did much with him outside of what he could do with the Mother Boxes. Arthur and Barry had a bit more heart personally, but that’s because of how cool they are.
Designs of Characters. I didn’t like the design of Cyborg, the Parademons or Steppenwolf. Cyborg’s design wasn’t aesthetically pleasing. I was pretty optimistic before I saw the film about his design because I figured the film wasn’t finished that he would look better but he didn’t. I think you could tell that they had to replace Ray Fisher’s body with CGI because the way his head moved compared to his body was odd. The Parademons could have had a different design, I mean I know they more or less look like that in the comics but they look too much like other things from other movies. A friend of mine mentioned they looked like Ultron’s henchmen which now I can’t unsee that. Steppenwolf looked like that hammerhead shark guy from Pirates of the Caribbean and I think his design could have been different. He’s this big grey guy and I think they could have done a little more with his design.
Special Effects. There are a lot of moments in the movie where the special effects looked really bad and weird. The effects on Cyborg were awkward, I didn’t like the blue light on his forehead and then the red light with his eye. It didn’t look well together. There is a particular character that shows up a few times where it’s easy to tell that something was digitally done to their face (a friend told me why that happened) and while I get it now, it still bothered me and I noticed it every time they showed up and was so bad.
The Fight Scenes. Not all of them were bad but there were some badly choreographed fights. Most notably, the one in Atlantis. I was really looking forward to that because I want to see how it looked underwater and it was meh. It was disappointing. The fight scene at the end, the big one, was also lackluster and there were times when The Flash was running that all you saw was a bunch of lightning and I mean I get it, he’s so fast BUT I WANT TO SEE THE ACTION. The big fight at the end, there are moments when I had no idea what was going on, there was this weird orange tint on the screen and they would cut away or do a long shot when someone was fighting. Why?
Disjointed/Structure. I don’t know if everyone really knows this, but Zack Snyder had to step down from finishing this movie due to a tragedy in his family, so Joss Whedon (Avengers, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Buffy: The Vampire Slayer) came in to finish the film in post production. He was originally hired to write additional scenes that would be reshoots but due to the tragedy, Whedon ended up finishing the post production of the film and filmed the scenes he wrote. I think it’s easy to tell that it was handled by different people because it gets very clunky in there. It almost feels like one of those puzzles where you have to slide the pieces in order to make it fit and someone didn’t know what they were doing at first, and then someone had to come behind them and fix it and they tried their best but one piece was still not fitting correctly.
Bad/Awkward Cuts and Transitions. Wow, this movie so many bad and awkward cuts and transitions. There was a particularly bad one that I was so shocked at how bad it was and it happened quite a lot in the movie. In the beginning, there’s a scene with Batman and a thief, and there’s a bit of dialogue and then it just cuts to the next scene. Later with Diana and Victor, they have a conversation and after it’s over, the scene cuts awkwardly again.  There’s a lot of that in the movie and it’s really distracting.
Overall, the day I saw Justice League, I found myself liking it more than I do now. This review has been hard because the more I thought about it, the more I found myself not liking it as much. I believe it’s definitely better than Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad but definitely nowhere near as good as Wonder Woman. It has a lot of flaws, but it’s fun. I did have fun watching it. I enjoyed seeing this characters on-screen together, I loved seeing Ezra Miller as The Flash and seeing Jason Mamoa as Aquaman, they were new and felt fresh. It was great to see Ben Affleck and Gal Gadot return as Batman and Wonder Woman and I liked Ray Fisher as Cyborg. I think the actors were fine in their roles. I liked some of the action, the music was fun, I particularly liked the credits song and I thought that it had a lot of funny moments. However, there were a lot of times where the characters felt like shells of what they should be, or have been, the action wasn’t consistent, the story was clunky with no stakes, I didn’t believe the danger. The special effects were inconsistent and there were a TON of bad and awkward cuts and transitions. I wanted to really like this movie, I like it enough that I would buy it, but I don’t think it’s as good as it could have been. I just hope that the future movies, get better. Perhaps the solo movies will be handled better.
Rating: 2.89 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Justice League? What did you think of it? Comment below and let me know!
Who is your favorite DC comics character?
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P.S. There are TWO credit scenes.

(First Look) Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindlewald

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So this is the first time, I’m really doing a “First Look” type of thing with a movie coming out. I kind of did it with Beauty and the Beast with the trailer but this time I’m doing with the first picture they released.
But I think it’s important to note first, that I thought Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was fine. Check out my review here. But I had my issues with it, mainly with it being unfocused and boring. They tried to do too many things in one film and I didn’t really like that. Now, I’ve seen comments about how they felt that these movies were “shoe-horning” the Harry Potter-isms in the movie and this one is going to be even more of that, mostly with Dumbledore being involved, but I think that’s silly because it’s a prequel universe to the Harry Potter timeline… so why wouldn’t they put things we’re already used to seeing in this movie? I mean…?
The Title
Regardless though, I think it’s the whole “fantastic beasts” thing that is being “shoe-horned”. The beasts felt like a subplot in the first one and that bothered me with a film called “Fantastic Beasts and WHERE to Find Them”, I mean I get it. But it felt unimportant compared to everything else going on. I thought the film was going to focus on Newt trying to capture these beasts and what not but it didn’t really focus on that. It was part, but it felt sporadic. Why is this one called Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald? Why can’t it just be called “The Crimes of Grindelwald“? That makes much more sense to me than putting the Fantastic Beasts in front of the title. If it’s going to be about them catching Grindelwald, then let’s leave it at that. It can be argued that “fantastic beasts” refers to Credence (Ezra Miller) and the unnamed girl in the picture next to him (Claudia Kim) being that he’s a Obscurus and has somehow survived from being attacked in the last movie. Not that I thought he actually died. He seemed to powerful for that. Claudia Kim is supposed to be a Maledictus, a person who turns into an animal, so maybe that works but it just seems odd and doesn’t fit together “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald“. It doesn’t roll of the tongue lol.
The Picture Itself
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So I like it. I don’t think it looks weird or anything. I like the feel of it and it definitely fits into that 20s theme. I like how in the stagnant picture how everyone kind of have their own thing going on.
  • Albus looks great in his long coat, I wonder though he long it takes him to become the eccentric Dumbledore we know as an older adult.
  • Grindelwald also looks great, I don’t care what anyone says, but I think Johnny Depp looks great in this picture and I’m excited for him.
  • Tina and Newt are close together and she is leaning towards him but Newt is just looking awkward as always.
  • It’s cute that Jacob has his hand on Queenie’s arm and she’s leaning into him.
  • Theseus almost looks a bit… scary in the center but I also think it’s interesting how Newt is behind him instead of being center himself. Anyway, Theseus and Leta look like a pure blood couple lol.
  • Credence and Maledictus (I’m sure that’s not her actual name, it’s unknown right now) look interesting in the corner. I mean, honestly, my eyes go to them first. But Credence is hunched over but not in the way he hunched in the first movie, in the first movie, he hunched because he was always scared or sad but here he’s hunched (it really seems like a natural state for him really) and has this look like “mess with me but I’m also trying to control myself” lol, plus with Maledictus hanging on him and she has a sad look on her face too and I love her outfit.
Now if you look at the picture with the YouTube video and how it moves. I can’t find a gif so just look at the video lol.
  • Albus immediately turns his head and look at Grindelwald, which I think is so interesting. Obviously they have a history and it looks like Albus can’t help himself… plus he’s chasing him. So double entendre lol. Make note that Albus does NOT have the Elder Wand yet.
  • Grindelwald doesn’t really move, the only thing I thought moved was his expression. If you look closely, he looks like he’s smirking but the smirk goes away. Not sure what that’s about. Does he feel bad about what happened between him and Albus? Meh, I doubt it. Maybe he feels bad about what happened with Credence since he worked so hard to make him trust him. Dunno but it’s interesting. Also make note that Grindelwald has the Elder Wand (one of the Deathly Hallows).
  • Jacob and Queenie don’t move position, but they both sort of look at Grindelwald. Queenie’s smile goes away when she looks at him and Jacob’s eyes look at Grindelwald.
  • Theseus and Leta look at each other. That’s about it.
  • Credence doesn’t move but Maledictus’s expression saddens and she leans on Credence more. I can’t help but wonder Credence does for her what Tina did for him previously, and in a way what Graves did for him.
  • Tina immediately turns and looks at Newt. However, before he awkwardly looks at her, she turns away. I don’t know how long it’ll be before they *spoiler alert* get together and married but maybe that’s foreshadowing that they keep dancing around each other.
  • Lastly, Newt shifts awkwardly before turning to look at Tina (who just looks away), he does an awkward double take before slightly glancing at Leta and Theseus.
The Characters Involved.
So we have returning characters but also a good group of new characters. I wanted to go a bit more into them from what we know and to what we might find out.
Returning Characters.
  • Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander: He is a self-proclaimed Magizoologist. He has finished his book about magical beasts. He works in the Ministry of Magic in the Beasts Division of the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures (whew a mouthful). In this film, he is supposed to be working alongside Albus Dumbledore in apprehending Grindelwald who has escaped from MACUSA, because he has thwarted Grindelwald before. I liked Newt fine, he’s definitely odd but I also don’t think I got attached to him at all because he just felt like he was there. I hate to compare but Harry Potter is so loved because he felt like a real person, regardless of him being new to magic the first time we meet him, he still felt real. Newt doesn’t feel that way yet.
  • Katherine Waterston as Porpentina “Tina” Goldstein: I’m trying to figure out why she went back to MACUSA after they tried to execute her without any real evidence or trial. That’s weird. But anyway, she’s a MACUSA Auror who works mostly with the Major Investigations Department. Spoiler alert again… she’s Newt’s love interest because they get married down the line. Tina was kind of meh in the first movie, so hopefully they’ll allow her character to be more likable here.Dan Fogler as Jacob Kowalski: I really liked him in the first movie, he was a great addition. But… why is he here? To be Queenie’s love interest? I like them but I hope he has more to do than that otherwise he’ll feel useless.
  • Alison Sudol as Queenie Goldstein: I really liked Queenie, she reminded me of Luna Lovegood. I know that she and Jacob will be reunited even though his memory was wiped at the end of the first movie. I also hope she has more to do because I did really like her. She’s also a Legilimens.
  • Ezra Miller as Credence Barebone: I love Ezra Miller. LOVE HIM. I knew his character wasn’t dead even though the attack on him at the end of the first film, seemed pretty final but he seemed way too powerful to be destroyed like that. So, somehow he’s returned and I wonder what his role will be like. In the first one, he was so abused that he violently repressed a lot, including his magic, which made him powerful. But, I want to know what happened to him, how he came back etc. Apparently his role will continue to expand in the series which I’m down for because his character was interesting.
New Characters.
  • Johnny Depp as Gellert Grindelwald: He is a Dark wizard who commits violent attacks throughout Europe and causes mass chaos in US. He wants to build up his forces and create a New Wizarding Order (similar to Voldemort). Apparently he escapes from MACUSA. He shares a long, deep and mysterious relationship with Albus Dumbledore until they got into a big fight. I think Johnny Depp looks very good in this photo. A lot of people have talked about him, and while I agree he looked weird at the end of the first one, he looks much better here. He looks healthy and in his right mind. He looks mysterious and kind of sexy, it’s kind of weird lol. Grindelwald is supposed to be sleazy and that’s what he looks like, he’s the opposite of Dumbledore. I’m very interested in seeing what happens with him. I really want Johnny Depp to get a win, I’ve always loved him and I want him to do well in this movie. I wonder if Grindelwald will get back in contact with Credence as himself this time since he’s been outed and no longer Colin Farrell.
  • Jude Law as Albus Dumbledore: He is an extremely and powerful wizard in the British Wizarding Community. He is known for his academic excellence and is currently the Transfiguration professor at Hogwarts. He believed in Newt when he was expelled from school which makes sense why he goes to him for help in catching Grindelwald. I think Jude Law also looks FANTASTIC as a young Albus. I’m really interested in seeing how he plays him considering we’ve had two older Dumbledores both being very good at different parts of the character in the Harry Potter films. I can’t wait to see how things turn out when he comes face to face with Grindelwald.
  • Zoë Kravitz as Leta Lestrange: She’s shown very briefly in a photograph in Newt’s possession. It seemed like they had a thing in school, mostly where Newt liked her. I don’t know much about her but according to the wiki “she is a damaged and confused young woman who still exerts a large amount of control over Newt, who might still be in love with her”. She risked the life of a student at school, responsible for Newt being cast out of a lot of British wizarding society circles, all because he took the blame for some of her crap. She of course is related by marriage to Bellatrix Lestrange. In this film, she is engaged to Newt’s brother Theseus Scamander. As I said, I don’t know much about her but I really like Zoe Kravitz and I know she’ll do a good job, but I’m curious as to what her character will be like in the film. I’m also interested because it’s Zoe Kravitz! So are the Lestranges black or what? That’s so exciting lol.
  • Callum Turner as Theseus Scamander: The older brother of Newt. They have an interesting relationship in which they don’t really understand each other but they’re nice to each other. He is described as a “war hero” in that he fought in WWI (so did Newt) and works in the Auror Office. He has spent the year hunting Grindelwald and is engaged to Leta Lestrange. I don’t know much about him either. I don’t know if Pottermore goes into detail about him but for one I’m curious to see how he and Newt interact (especially since Eddie Redmayne is older than Callum Turner) and if their relationship is actually a strained one that they pretend isn’t, not to mention, with Newt probably still having a thing for Leta. If you look at the moving picture, Newt does kind of look at her before looking back at Tina (who looks away before he looks at her), so maybe Newt and Theseus don’t really get along. I mean Theseus looks like a douche.
  • Claudia Kim as a Maledictus: Nothing is really known about her, I’m sure her name isn’t Maledictus but she has a blood curse that causes her to transform into a beast. In this film, she is the main attraction of the wizarding circus and freak show. That’s definitely interesting to see, we already know that the wizarding world can be cruel, especially when it comes to “blood impurities” so I’m curious to see how she and Credence meet since in the picture, she is draped over him. I’m interested in her period. I want to know how she got caught, how long she’s been in the circus and I’m assuming she escapes, so I want to know how.
The Costumes/The Look
So one of the strong points of the first film was definitely the costume and the design. I really liked how the film looked a lot. I think this photo embraces that as well. Yes, I can get this all from a photo. Now to go down the line.
  • Albus is wearing an AWESOME coat. I want it. I love long coats. I do wonder when he stopped wearing those awesome coats and started wearing those long robes. Don’t go to the dark side Albus! Keep the swanky coat! Plus that beard! He also looks a far cry from the man we end up knowing. Dumbledore has had a lot of sadness in his life so I’m not surprised. Again, he’s not holding the Elder Wand.
  • Credence really looks different. First of all, you can cut glass on Ezra Miller’s face but this is a big difference to the black coats in the first movie. I can’t help but wonder if he works in the circus and that’s how he meets Maledictus. He looks like he’s wearing worker clothes but the expression on his face is also an extremely new one. It’s angry.
  • Maledictus looks beautiful. I love her outfit. I wonder what she turns into, maybe some kind of bird due to the detail on her leggings. Or what if she turns into a Occamy!? The design on her leggings kind of look like the scales of an Occamy and her hair style looks like the feathers on its head. Oh man, what if I call that? That would be so awesome!
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  • Leta Lestrange as I said looks nice, I really like the color on her and while I’m sure Leta and Newt are about 29 (Zoe Kravitz is 28) it just makes her look too old. Maybe it’s the type of dress and the hairstyle. She looks beautiful as always but there’s something I don’t like lol.
  • Theseus Scamander first of all, looks like a douche but he’s wearing a standard three-piece suit. It looks nice but it looks sharp and severe.
  • Tina looks soooo good here. Her hair really annoyed me in the first film, even if that was the style, but I think this looks much better. I guess going back to work for MACUSA did her good. Her coat is amazing, it looks like silk but hard to say.
  • Newt looks just like he did in the first film, with that yellow vest and that long green jacket. I like his look. It’s frumpy lol but it works for him. I really like his coat.
  • Jacob looks the same and he looks nice. I really like his suit too, I think it’s blue and the little detail of his tie is really nice.
  • I LOOOOVE Queenie’s dress! Oh my goodness that thing is amazing! Her shoes! Wow! It’s quirky and sexy just like her.
  • Grindelwald is wearing a GREAT coat. It’s kind of like Albus’s but he’s too cool that his  is open. I like the pockets of his pants and his vest. He looks like a gentleman but at the same time, he doesn’t because he’s wearing a lot of layers and it seems a bit overkill but it works for him. Plus, the hair, lol this look kind of fits Johnny Depp.
My Hopes for the Film
As I said before, the first one is fine, I didn’t dislike it but I didn’t really like it either. I really want this film to be:
  • Focused. That was my biggest problem with the first film is that it was unfocused. There was a lot of storylines going on that the movie didn’t seem to know which one it wanted to follow and by time it figured it out, the movie was already ending. There already seem to be a lot going on with Albus and Newt going after Grindelwald who has escaped. I’m sure Tina will be helping in some way as well. Theseus will probably show up as he’s been chasing Grindelwald for a year. What will Queenie and Jacob be doing? Just connecting? Will Leta actually be around or is it really in flashbacks? What about Credence and then Maledictus? There already seems like a lot going on, I just hope that they can handle the multiple storylines and make it come together for the film. I love that J.K. Rowling is writing the screenplay but I think you can tell she’s a novelist.
  • A Strong Story. This goes hand in hand with it being focused, but I don’t doubt it will be an interesting idea, but I want it to be STRONG. I want to care about what’s going on, not to be bored. It will never replace the Harry Potter stories, but I want these movies to build on the huge and ever-expanding Wizarding World and make me love it even more. The first one didn’t do that, it just felt unnecessary. I want this film (and the ones coming after) to feel necessary. I want the story to be intriguing that I can’t wait for the next one.
  • Interesting Characters. I don’t doubt that the acting will be good as I thought the acting was fine in the first film, I didn’t dislike any character, I just didn’t really much about a lot of them because they didn’t have a lot to do, or they were just there because the script said they had to be. But I really want everyone, including the new characters to be interesting. I’m not asking for the script to go into so much detail about everyone, I mean that’s almost impossible for a movie like this (if it was 3 hours long then I’m sure it could), but at least give us enough that it feels satisfying. I also hope that the returning characters are built upon and not just continuing the story without any real reason of being there.
  • Good Music. Let’s keep the good music flowing around here! I like good movie soundtracks! It sounds shallow but that’s what I want lol.
So that’s all I got for now. There’s a lot to be said from this one picture and that little video. I think there’s a lot of potential but I also think it could be along the same vein of the first one where it’s just… okay. I don’t want a movie that belongs to the Harry Potter Wizarding World to just be okay. I didn’t get around to reading The Cursed Child but I didn’t hear many good things about it and I don’t want this set of prequels to be thought of collectively like that book(play) is. There’s so much in the Harry Potter world that there is room to be explored and be built upon without having to worry about a set of books to go by, there’s room for new stuff but I hope that doesn’t ruin things.
I’m not really excited from the one picture (trust me, first look photos for other movies have gotten me freaked before) but I’m hopeful.
  • What do you think of the photo?
  • The video?
  • Do you think this cast looks good?
  • What do YOU want to see be explored in this movie?
  • What is your favorite Harry Potter book/movie?
Let me know in the comments! Please don’t forget to like this post and follow this blog!

Murder on the Orient Express (2017) Review

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Summary: A lavish train ride unfolds into a stylish & suspenseful mystery. From the novel by Agatha Christie, Murder on the Orient Express tells of thirteen stranded strangers & one man’s race to solve the puzzle before the murderer strikes again.
**I have to say that I don’t think this is a remake considering it’s based on a book, it’s just another adaptation.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. Normally, I would do a little breakdown of all the characters, or at least the ones that stood out the most, but I found that I couldn’t really do that here. I can’t do that without giving away important bits of the story. But I think every actor did very well in their roles. Kenneth Branagh plays the detective Hercule Poirot who is trying to solve the murder. Everyone else come and go throughout the film, we learn just a bit about each character to begin to form our own ideas of why they could have comitted a murder. However, I will say that I thought Johnny Depp did a very good job in the movie, he’s not in it for very long but his character was probably the most interesting and I did want to know more about him. I’ve always loved Johnny Depp and I still do, so he was a standout here.
Very Stylized. I think the film looks very great. I know I say it all the time when I talk about the look of the film, that it looks crisp. But it does! It’s so beautiful! Any time the camera would travel over to the train from an aerial view, the landscape looked so beautiful. Just seeing how the snow looked, or how it looked at night, even the costumes all looked so beautiful!
The Music. Patrick Doyle does the music here and I thought it fit the film very well. I liked the score at the end of the film very much but it helps create this element of mystery and intrigue throughout the film. Any time it was needed, it would crescendo. It’s lovely.
The Mystery. I thought the mystery was very interesting. I love solving puzzles and mysteries and I really was trying to figure it out as the film went along. That’s the part I loved the most about the film was trying to figure it out. Trying to discover the little hints of answers, trying to catch little things that would help, I really loved all that.
Cons:
Kind of boring. I liked the movie, don’t get me wrong. But I thought it was a bit too long, drawn outa nd boring. I love mysteries, I love solving puzzles and looking at all the clues. My favorite boardgame is in fact Clue but being that this is a movie, I felt like they were trying to drag it out for this big finish at the end and I think it fell flat. There’s nothing really going on other than the Detective trying to solve it and bits of informationg being given. Other than that, there really isn’t anything else going on and it’s gets a bit boring and tedious because of it.
No Character Stands Out. I thought all the actors were great but I didn’t think any of the characters were interesting outside finding out who the killer was. I wasn’t able to really get into any of the characters to really feel anything for them. I don’t think it had anything to do with how many there were because there are movies were there are ensembles and at least some of the characters are interesting, or all them (Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter etc). A lot of time is spent with Hercule Poirot and it felt like Kenneth Branagh really put himself in the forefront (he directed as well)  and that affects the rest of the characters. When the stinger comes at the end, I wanted to really care but I couldn’t.
Overall, I liked the movie, I thought it was fun for the most part. I looks great, the acting is all very well done, the music really helps the movie and I think that it’s pretty standard in terms of being a “whodunnit” type of film. With that said, I do think the movie is a bit boring overall, and it feels too long because there’s not a lot going on and it can lag a bit during scenes. I’ve never read the book or seen the old adaptation but it just feels like it was missing something. Perhaps it needed to be more fast paced and that would have helped. It’s not this sophisticated film and it didn’t need to try so hard. I also didn’t think any of the characters really stood out, it felt like Kenneth Branagh was front and center and while that wasn’t always a bad thing, it did prevent the other characters from being interesting. It doesn’t add anything new to the genre but the mystery is fun to figure out.
Rating: 2.8 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Murder on the Orient Express? Did you see the original adaptation? Read the book? How did it hold up?
Let me know in the comments below! Also, don’t forget to follow this blog for more reviews!
Thanks for reading!