Movie Review: It Chapter Two (2019)

it-chapter-2-cast

Summary: Twenty-seven years after their first encounter with the terrifying Pennywise, the Losers Club have grown up and moved away, until a devastating phone call brings them back.

You can read Movie Review: IT (2017) and Spoiler Talk: IT.

Pros:
Cast and Characters.
  • The Losers’ Club.
    • James McAvoy and Jaeden Martell as Bill Denbrough. While Richie was my favorite kid in the first movie, I actually think James McAvoy was my favorite adult. They gave him a lot of emotional things to go through and he’s so good at that that I was so invested in his journey throughout the film. As a kid, he had a stutter that as he grew bolder, he was able to speak without it. He is the leader, even though the actors say they all are, which is true, but let’s be real, Bill’s the leader lol. He’s smart, resourceful and determined. He started out wanting revenge for the death of his younger brother and when he finds out it was an actual entity; he was determined to take it down. Jaeden Martell was great as Bill, very likable and soft which works for his character because he’s like a leader who has to grow into his role. We get a lot of flashbacks with him and there’s one where Jaeden and James actually get to act together and that was one of my favorite moments in the film. They are the only ones to really get to work with the other actor of their character and it was really great. As an adult, he’s a successful mystery novelist and is married to a successful actress, Audra Phillips. It’s clear that he hasn’t quite gotten over Beverly even if he doesn’t quite remember her due to a line he says to Audra. He also has a hard time writing good endings because I mean, he hasn’t really experienced one lol. I liked that that had to do a lot with his development. He’s the first one to get called and the first one to come back and he’s also the first one to be more on board with everything. I loved his scene with Mike in the attic of the library with the visions. Wonderfully acted by both actors. I also loved that throughout the film as he lost his nerve and became more afraid, his stutter came back full force and HE DOES SUCH A GREAT JOB! GOSH! I love me some James McAvoy and I was so invested in him. I mean, I know Chastain got top billing but he knocked it out of the park. I loved the strength he had in trying to pull everyone together at the behest of Mike. I love that he had to learn what happened wasn’t his fault, because he feels such crushing guilt. I also really loved the Fun house scene with him because it was something added just for this movie for us to see not only how Bill feels responsible but also lights a fire under him. Oh, the scene at the storm drain was also a great scene too. Man, he’s so good.
    • Bill Hader and Finn Wolfhard as Richie Tozier. He was my favorite character from the first movie and I really liked him a lot in this one too. My biggest issue was that while Richie was involved way more than both Stan and Mike, he didn’t get as much development as the others. As a kid, he was a loud and foul mouth which got him into trouble a lot. He’s Bill’s best friend, which I thought was evident in a lot of their conversations, their fight and his awesome speech at the end, Finn Wolfhard did a really great job in this role and I love that fact that his idea of Bill Hader playing Richie as an adult actually happened which was great casting. We get a few flashbacks where we see Richie encounter Pennywise in monster form, as well as dealing with other character moments which were pretty nice and I thought Finn handles that emotional moment wonderfully. It’s very subtle but I think it’s clear to understand. Plus, he’s a boss at running away from things thanks to Stranger Things lol. Adult Richie is a successful stand-up comic in LA and he’s very similar to how he was as a child. He’s still foul mouthed and still makes jokes, even in the worst of the times… which to get off point for a moment, I know the “Beep beep Richie” is the Losers’ way of saying “Shut up” to Richie but no one literally says that in the first one other than Pennywise and it was just random. Just an Easter egg I guess, but I suppose fans were upset it wasn’t used properly before Pennywise’s taunt and they randomly included it in this and I was like “Wait… I’m glad you used it but it was so random because no one else has ever said that to him” just something I’d thought I’d mention lol. Bill Hader was really good, I quite liked him as well and I liked that he was still similar to how he was as a child where he’s against this but when it comes down to it, he has everyone’s back. It was pretty cool seeing Bill Hader in a role like this. He is definitely someone I have found myself thinking about a lot after I saw the film. A standout to me.
    • Jessica Chastain and Sophia Lillis as Beverly Marsh. As a child, she was physically and sexually abused by her father. She’s his “little girl” and all that. She was bullied at school due to rumors of promiscuity. She was the love interest of both Bill and Ben with her being more into Bill. Sophia Lillis was great as Beverly as she became a strong member in the group, she was brave and always willing to charge in with Bill. I personally think Amy Adams would have been better cast, as Sophia looks more like her but whatever lol. Jessica Chastain was fine, I thought she fit into the group just fine and that she did well with a lot of Beverly’s emotional moments. I did find myself rolling my eyes at her being overdramatic sometimes but I think my favorite moment of her was in the beginning when the Losers all get together again in the restaurant, it was very reminiscent of Sophia Lillis’ Beverly. Also, I hate to say it lol but the scene in the bathroom during the last third as well.
    • Isaiah Mustafa and Chosen Jacobs as Mike Hanlon. I am so happy that Mike’s role was larger in this because he was grossly underused in the first one. There’s not much to say about him as a kid other than, he was the strong silent type and came off as the protector being that he was bigger than the others. As an adult, he stayed behind in Derry as the librarian and has made it his mission to keep track of Pennywise so he could call the others back if he needed to. He almost has an eccentric quality about him because he’s been so hyper-focused on this for so long. I liked Chosen Jacobs, I thought he did well with what he was given but they still didn’t give him his due even in the flashbacks. ANYWAYS, I am proud of Isaiah Mustafa because he was great. He pulled off the manic and sweet personality that Mike has. A gentle giant in ways just because he’s a big guy lol. He had some really great scene with James McAvoy and I would like to see them partner up in the future in some other movies, they had great chemistry. He has some really strong scenes towards the end.
    • James Ransone and Jack Dylan Grazer as Eddie Kaspbrak. He is a hypochondriac and is over exaggerated in how he always thinks something is wrong with him lol. As an adult, he is a successful risk assessor and married a woman similar to his mother (who is played by the same woman who played young Eddie’s mom lol). Eddie was clearly a fan favorite from the first film because JDG was great with his quick-fire comments, witty replies and his little ticks. I mean, him and Richie are the two I immediately think of when I think of the first movie because they were really good. He’s very funny and I thought James Ransone did a great job portraying an older version of the Eddie we’re used to. He clearly paid attention to JDG and tried to really capture some of his ticks and how he delivers his lines because I thought he managed to pull it off. He’s really quick with a lot of retorts, he’s funny without trying to be funny and I like that his arc centered around being brave because he had that issue in the first one too but it’s magnified in this one.
    • Jay Ryan and Jeremy Ray Taylor as Ben Hanscom. As a kid, Ben was bullied for being overweight, but he was a sweet kid. He was into history and he got “inducted” into the Losers’ club after he finds them when he escaped from Henry Bowers. I thought JRT had this innocence and likability about him that helped his character even though he might have been a little forgettable at times. He has a great flashback scene in the school though lol. As an adult, he is fit and a successful architect. We get some flashbacks to see how he got into that. Jay Ryan plays adult Ben and I think he was the weakest actor out of the bunch and I also thought he didn’t belong a lot of the time, I’m not sure why but I often forgot he was there. When he inserts himself in the scene, he does have this likability about him and he comes off very earnest… but I don’t know lol. But I won’t put him in the cons because I still liked him, he was fine. He had a lot of quiet moments with Chastain to showcase more of how he feels about her and to show us that he’s been lonely for his adult life and all of that is great. But honestly, outside of kind of pining and then kind of being someone to be a bit encouraging, he was just fine.
    • Andy Bean and Wyatt Oleff as Stanley Uris. So, we don’t really get the chance to know Andy Bean’s version of Stan as much as the others, but I have to say, he is spot on casting physically because he looks like he’s related to Wyatt lol. We get to see a lot of Wyatt in flashbacks and I’m glad because it helped his character since he didn’t get a lot of screen time and other things in the first one. He was the stick in the mud of the group but he was very wise and both actors manage to pull that off in the little we get to see of him.
  • Bill Skarsgård as Pennywise the Dancing Clown. He is an ancient monster that awakens every 27 years to feed on the fear of children it murders. Pennywise the clown is clearly it’s favorite form because he gets to have more fun lol. He does a lot of scaring in the first film and gets overpowered and injured but he comes back with a vengeance and he haunts the town of Derry. When the Losers come back, he begins to haunt them as well. He wants revenge for what they did to him all those years ago. I mean, he pulls out all the stops on them. Being that he is a shapeshifter, he takes the forms of many creatures in this film. Some of which we’ve seen before. I think one of the most interesting things about him is when he’s luring people in, he’s very charismatic (creepy) and he appeals to certain natures within that person. However, when he’s with our Losers, whether it be in flashbacks where he’s tormenting them, after they defeated him that first time, or in present where he’s back, he’s really trying to terrify them to get them back for what they did. Bill Skarsgård is amazing. He still does that eye thing which I’m used to now but still off-putting and then he makes some great facial expressions and coupled with the makeup… it’s a lot lol. I still don’t like clowns and if Pennywise ever showed up around me, I’d freak out but at least in the movies, I enjoy watching him do his thing. The voice, the body movements, his presence, it all works. Sometimes he comes off a little silly, particularly when they do the face thing with the teeth but otherwise, he’s a great villain. He does take the form of other creatures in the movie.
Intense Adventure. This movie has a lot of adventure elements, especially when it gets to the last third of the film. When they enter the sewers, the action is going down and it’s handled really well actually. Sure, there are a lot of horror elements in the last act but it’s also very physical and the characters have to do a lot. I was really into it and invested in watching them defeat this monster. It’s definitely bigger than the climax in the first one and we get to see the characters go off on different sections of adventures, some things we’ve seen already from the first film and other are new things. I mean, it’s pretty nonstop once they get into the sewers so be ready for a fast-paced adventure in the last 45 minutes.
Character Chemistry… sometimes. I think the adults manage to have chemistry in some aspects of the film but not always, so I will mention this later. James McAvoy and Jessica Chastain have worked together before and they have chemistry, friendly and romantic which is important since Bill and Beverly had something when they were kids. Bill Hader and James Ransone play off each other really well as while I thought Richie was Bill’s oldest friend and vice-versa, Richie and Eddie seemed to be closer and that shows in this one too. Isaiah Mustafa played really well off of everyone, especially McAvoy as they had a lot of scenes together and Jay Ryan fit in where he could get in… sometimes lol. A great scene though is when they all are in the Chinese restaurant and they just are having a great time, I believed they were all great friends. I also love group shots lol.
Chinese Restaurant/The Fun House/Storm Drain Sequence. Once all the Losers make it back to Derry, they meet at a Chinese restaurant to have dinner and it’s a great sequence because we get to see them fall back into their old ways, remember each other and their childhood and it’s a great scene for all the actors to just live in their characters. It was probably the scene where you see them the most like their kid counterparts. It has a lot of stuff happening, emotional moments, light and comedic moments and of course the scares which was creepy and everyone did well in freaking out about it. I sat in my chair like O.O the entire time. As for the Fun House, you see this part in the trailer, where Bill is in a hall of mirrors trying to save a little boy from Pennywise and it’s such a good scene. It really adds more to Bill’s character and the guilt he feels for Georgie. I read that it was a scene they added last minute, it doesn’t show and I think it was necessary to have. Bill has a lot of internal struggle and this scene really shows all of that. Pennywise is taunting him, and he’s in the fun house to eat this kid and Bill is trying to save him. He ends up getting stuck to watch this kid scream as Pennywise is on the other side of the glass. It’s a great scene and James McAvoy is so good in that scene. He is masterful and I really felt his fear. The kid did a good job as well and of course Bill Skarsgård as Pennywise was good in the scene too. The storm drain scene where Bill goes by his old house and he sees the storm drain where Georgie went missing and he stares at it for a moment. There’s a flashback which Jaeden does a great job acting in. Adult Bill has a moment and I can’t spoil it obviously but gosh it was so good.
The Horror Elements. Obviously, it’s a horror film so there are supposed to be scary elements. Now, with that said, depending on how scared you are, they may not scare you. I really only jumped maybe once in the film and it was towards the end with the “Not Scary At All”, “Scary” and “Very Scary” doors lol. It was what was behind the second door that got me lol. OH! I’m sure you remember the trailer with the old lady, that entire sequence was frightening, all the buildup that led to her reveal was great stuff because you can see her in the background doing weird movements and it’s an entire trip. Her actual reveal was pretty silly, I think I laughed, but everything leading up to it was unsettling. I think the biggest thing this movie does really well is the buildup to things. Pennywise surely takes out all the stops when it comes to going after the adult Losers because he wants revenge but the anticipation of what’s going to happen gets you more than what actually happens, at least, I think. This happens in the locker with Ben, the pharmacy with Eddie, the park with Richie and of course the storm drain with both versions of Bill.
Good Humor. Just as the first one was funny; this one is very funny. I mean, with Bill Hader it was bound to be funny. A lot of the humor goes to both Hader and James Ransone as Richie and Eddie respectively. They both really feel like adult versions of their kid actors. I think Ransone really tried hard to really emulate Jack Dylan Grazer’s quick-fire reactions and witty comments and he managed it most of the time but JDG is so great lol. But anyway, even when they’re not spouting off jokes, they have great facial expressions or even moments that help dissipate the horror. Not to mention, some things that were meant to be scary turned out funny.
The Flashbacks. So, we get some flashbacks with the kids from the Loser’s club which is great because I saw the first one because of the kids. We get to see some scenes we saw in the first one but we also get a lot of new scenes. A lot of them is with the losers on their own, after they defeated Pennywise that first time but he comes back to get in a few more scares. Or at least I think it’s after they defeated him, I thought one of the scenes made that clear but it also is a little confusing because it’s like “they defeated him where he went into early hibernation but he came back just to torment them a few more times??” I don’t know, but either way, I liked the flashbacks. It’s clear they did some de-aging on the kids because it’s been two years since filming and some of them have changed, particularly Finn Wolfhard lol. I mean look at him in the first movie and then look at him now. Some characters get more flashbacks than others, more like little moments than scenes but we still get to see more of them and what their lives were like. Stan has a great flashback during his Bar Mitzvah and I was like Yass Stan the Man. Great scenes.
Cons:
Too Long. This movie is 169 minutes or about 2 hours and 49 minutes long. I mean, it’s long and I think you would be aware that it is. It didn’t really bother me but I wanted to put it here because I’m sure people will complain about it.
Fluctuating Chemistry. I don’t think it’s like horrible or anything but I do think there are times when certain characters just don’t seem to fit as well. It happens every now and then and maybe it had to do with the conflict with the characters in the film but there are times where it’s like “wow, y’all look uncomfortable together” and like I said, it might be the writing. However, Jay Ryan was such an outlier with this group it was pretty noticeable a lot of the time. I don’t know what it was to be honest but I just thought he was the odd one out. It was just something I noticed.
The Romance. I’ll get into this more in the spoiler talk but I don’t really like how it was handled. One character, I thought it was fine. It was the love triangle with Bill, Beverly and Ben that I didn’t quite like. It’s not in your face or handled super poorly the way it normally can be handled in horror films but I thought the payout was lame no matter how it ended in the book. I didn’t believe in the end pairing because I didn’t think there was enough time for them to really have those romantic moments. That is all.
CGI Stuff and Horror. Obviously, this movie is a horror film and don’t get me wrong, I am not a horror fan, there are just some movies that catch my attention that happen to be horror lol. But, a lot of the time the build up for a reveal is handled really well but when things actually happen it turns out funny instead of scary. For example, I’m sure you remember the trailer with the old lady with Beverly in the house. So, that entire scene is unsettling and the old lady does weird stuff in the background and you can see her doing it, but when she actually is revealed, she looks ridiculous that I laughed. That happens a few times. My friend had her face covered with one eye visible for most of the movie and I know she was scared but I’m sorry, I cracked up quite a bit lol. Also, towards the end when we see Pennywise’s true form, it’s a mixture between the clown and his true form and if you have a fear of both clowns and what his true form is, then I can see it being too much and while I don’t like clowns, Pennywise isn’t that scary to me anymore and his final form was also kind of ridiculous. I laughed when they first showed it. I say all that to say, it may be scary to some but funny to others and while I was a little unsettled, I laughed at a lot of the designs. Unlike Judith (the painted lady) and the headless boy from the first film who were genuinely scary, I didn’t quite get that here. Not to mention, it’s also really a little weird when we get flashbacks with the kids and they are de-aged, some more than others, I think I noticed this particularly with Finn Wolfhard, probably because I’m so aware of him. I mean, look at him in the first one and then look at him now and it’s pretty obvious lol.
Loses the Simplicity. I thought a lot about this afterwards, but I think because this movie has to wrap everything up and so much is happening, it suffers a little for being complicated and having a ton of exposition at times. I know Mike is trying to impress upon the others the seriousness of the situation but a lot of times, it’s him talking and shouting at them and then everyone shouting at each other trying to say how they feel about everything. Then you have the entire third act of the film where they go into the sewers and it’s just a scary and fun joyride from there but they have to do so many things that it’s like “get to the point!” don’t get me wrong, I understood everything, I enjoyed the process but I’m also aware that what made the first movie so good, is that it’s complicated but pleasantly simple and it felt more contained whereas this one, is bigger and you can tell. It just feels like so much is going on and being thrown at you at once that it can become an overload of just stuff.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoy this movie. I think the first one is much better but this movie does a lot of great things. The cast is masterful which is great because the kid actors were the main reason why I wanted to see the first one in the first place. I thought all the adults managed to play the characters well where I can see the kids in them and not be completely upset at how they’re nothing alike. I still hoped for Amy Adams for Beverly but after seeing it, Chastain was fine. I’m happy at the development that Mike and even Richie received compared to the first film and I thought that James McAvoy and Bill Hader were standouts. They all have great chemistry together, especially when it counts. There are three really strong sequences that were acted so well that I just can’t even. This movie is really funny as well. There are a lot of laughs, some that are uncomfortable and some that are genuinely funny. The flashbacks scenes were some of my favorites because we got to see more with the kids and get a bit more development and time with them, which was great and it was handled so well in the film that it didn’t take me out the way flashbacks usually can. There is also some horror in here for the horror fans. I’m not one of those but I was able to handle it for the most part. Now, speaking of horror, I think the buildups to the scary moments were better than some of the actual scary reveals because  sometimes they just looked ridiculous that it made me laugh. I was more unsettled at the little stuff that might have happened in the background or that led up to the reveals. I do think the chemistry was off in some places, but mostly when it came to Jay Ryan. I do not believe the pairing at the end of the movie. I’m not upset about it but I wish the film did better in making me believe it was even an actual option, not just one-sided. Lastly, this film has a lot of stuff to get through and handle and you can tell that there is a lot more going on and it has a hard time, sometimes, making it through without it feeling like a lot. But in the end, IT Chapter Two is a great follow up to a wonderful first film and I definitely recommend it.
Rating: 3.8 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen IT: Chapter Two? Who is your favorite Loser? What did you think about this film? Let me know in the comments below!
There will be a spoiler talk for this film once I see the movie a second time :D.
Be sure to like, comment and follow this blog for more Movie Reviews!
Advertisements

Movie Review: Dark Phoenix (2019)

dark-phoenix-production-problems

Summary: Jean Grey begins to develop incredible powers that corrupt and turn her into a Dark Phoenix. Now the X-Men will have to decide if the life of a team member is worth more than all of humanity.
This is a really late review lol but finally here it is!
Pros:
Cast and CharactersHonestly, we have a lot of characters in this movie but I don’t think there is enough screen time for most of them for us to really care about them outside of the fact they are characters we have seen in previous movies or we know them from the comics.
  • Sophie Turner as Jean Grey. She is an extremely powerful mutant with telepathic and telekinetic powers. In this film, the X-men have been working alongside the government in certain missions. In this one, it’s something with NASA so the X-men are sent to help out which causes Jean to have to hold the spaceship together while Kurt tries to save the last astronaut. This causes her to be hit with the cosmic cloud. Throughout the film, she deals with the unraveling of her mind and the strength of her powers. She goes back and forth between being vulnerable and confident as she loses more of who she was and goes into someone she’s not sure she wants to be. The film is ultimately about her and her journey and I think Sophie Turner does a good job with the ups and downs Jean goes through. If you don’t like Sansa Stark then you might be reminded of her in the beginning when Jean’s all crying and what not but when she takes on the confidence of the Phoenix she does the smirking expressions and the kind of darkness of Phoenix to the point where I was like “Yass I’m into it” lol. Also, her American accent was a lot better in this one compared to her first outing as Jean. She slipped a few times but it was overall good.
  • James McAvoy as Charles Xavier / Professor X. He is a mutant pacifist and he founded Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters. In this, Charles seems to be loving the attention they are getting from the world and others call him out on it. If anyone can be said about Charles, it’s he tries to make decisions with the best intentions, for the “greater good”. He never does anything to ruin a person’s life, or to better himself. He does it to help and I think that’s always been his thing. Sure, he may not always be morally right and he may not make the best decisions, but it’s not like he’s a bad guy. Anyway, James McAvoy is so good as Charles though, he’s always so good.
Supporting Characters. 
  • Michael Fassbender as Erik Lehnsherr / Magneto. He’s not in the movie that much, he comes in maybe the halfway mark and then sticks around but he’s not a big player like he has been in the past. He only really gets involved because he’s living on some mutant island where they can be safe and Jean goes to him for sanctuary. When he finds out what happened, he spends a good chunk going after Jean. Michael Fassbender is still good as Erik, he doesn’t get a ton to do in this movie but when he’s on screen, he still is very dynamic.
  • Nicholas Hoult as Hank McCoy / Beast. I like Nicholas Hoult and I think he does really well with the emotional weight his character goes through really well. I do not like him in the movie but I think Hoult still does a great job with Hank though.
  • Tye Sheridan as Scott Summers / Cyclops. He can fire optic beams with his eyes. In this film he and Jean are in a developing relationship and it’s part of what helps her stay grounded, that and the idea of family. He’s a foundation of hope for Jean. I like Tye Sheridan and I like him as Scott, he doesn’t get a ton to do in this film but I like the chemistry with him and Sophie Turner.
  • Jessica Chastain as Vuk. Without going into any spoiler details, she is trying to lead Jean and teach her how to use her power that causes her to give in to the power. She is very clinical and unsettling. I think a lot of it has to do with her appearance but I think Jessica Chastain does a fine job in the role.
Story Idea. Of course, the story idea of Jean dealing with the cosmic powers from space and the whole dark phoenix thing is awesome. I think it’s really great to see her struggle with her power, her trauma and identity.
Use of Powers. The action in this movie is handled well. How Jean’s powers are used, while not as massive as they could be, I thought was handled really well, particularly the scene at the end when she really gets to show out. I also think how Nightcrawler gets to use his powers, particularly in the last half of the film is super exciting! Getting to see Charles in the midst of battle use his powers against someone else who also has his powers… to see other characters get to shine during action scenes was really fun to watch. If anything, the action and power use is really exciting! On a negative (?) note, they do know that Storm can do more than harness lightning, right? Just thought I’d ask.
Cons:
Other Characters. I swear, the other characters are just there because they were in previous movies. I love both Storm and Nightcrawler. They are my favorite X-men and I feel like the movies just don’t know what to do with them, or at least how to utilize them the way they should. Even Scott, is just reduced to “Jean I’m here for you…” and blah blah blah and I’m like *rolls eyes* I know the movie is about Jean and while the other characters KIND of get to shine in action pieces, I just wish their personalities get the same love as the action.
Nothing’s happening? For a good chunk of the movie there’s not much happening. It just seems like Jean’s going from place to place, crying and being afraid of whatever’s happening to her. She goes from person to person to find help and finally when she meets Jessica Chastain, things seem to be kicking off. It just felt like an hour of nothing really going on until the last 30 minutes or so.
Forgettable. I don’t think this movie makes the stamp it really wants to make. I feel like in the sea of X-men movies we have, this one will kind of just float on by because the tension isn’t really there. I didn’t feel like anything was really going to happen that would be long lasting. I mean, it’s hard to really take it seriously considering what’s going on behind the scenes with Marvel Studios taking over now, but even without that, I don’t think it would really make the impression it wants to make. I mean, outside of me doing this review, I’m like… okay.
Freaking Mystique. She’s never been my favorite character in the X-men universe but she’s a bit cool and the movies made her cooler however, I don’t care for this whole thing of trying to make her be a good guy or make her be an X-men. Is it because it’s Jennifer Lawrence? Is she not allowed to be a bad guy? In this movie she’s leading the X-men team out in the field but she is also upset at Charles, even more so than she’s been in other movies. I’m over her. Mystique has always worked at the betterment of herself. Yes, I don’t mind her wanting to protect the kids, but stop trying to make her into something she’s not because it’s just really annoying and it makes me hate her. I don’t think Jennifer Lawrence is a bad actress, I think she’s fine, I just find her character (particularly in this) super annoying and I don’t like the direction or the writing for her character. She comes off really whiny.
Do We Hate Charles Now? I’m sorry this might be spoiler-ish? I feel like they might have been setting this up in other movies, which is fine, but since when do we all hate and distrust Charles? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not going to act like his choices were perfect, especially when it came to helping Jean, but let’s not act like he does things for his own ego. He does things to help others. Sure, he’s at an interesting place in this movie but don’t sit here and allow Mystique, and then Hank to sit here and act like Charles is the reason for every bad thing that’s happened? No thanks. I did not like that and I was upset every time it was brought up and the first 30 minutes, I was sitting in my chair fuming. I don’t think it was a good plot point because it was stupid. Having Jean be upset or whatever is okay because that makes sense but the other stuff? Meh. I hate it.
Overall, I didn’t hate Dark Phoenix, especially not in the way I’ve seen other people call it ‘trash’ which I don’t think it is, but I don’t think it’s as good as it should be. This movie has gone through a lot in terms of reshoots and what not and I think it shows. I think Jean and Charles who are the main leads are interesting and Sophie Turner and James McAvoy handle their characters really well. The other characters do just fine overall and the acting is good. The story is really interesting and I just wish we got to see a bit more and I really like how the powers are used in this film, everyone kind of gets their moment to shine. Now, I don’t think the character development and personalities get the same amount of love the action does. I think it’s a very forgettable movie in the sea of comic book movies or even X-men movies. I HATE Mystique in these movies and I’m sick of her being shoved in my face as a good person, they’re giving me whiplash with who she is and what her motives are. JUST STOP. Jennifer Lawrence clearly doesn’t want to do these because I swear, she’s phoning it in. Also, this whole thing of people wanting to turn on Charles because he’s made some bad decisions, I mean please. UGH! I hated that too. In the end, this is a fine movie to watch, especially if you are an X-men fan. Check it out.
Rating: 2.9 out of 5 stars. 
Have you seen Dark Phoenix? What were your thoughts? Comment below and let me know! I would love to hear from you.
Thanks for reading and be sure to keep an eye out for any future reviews!

Best Movies of 2017

movie-of-the-year

So 2017 has ended… which means it’s time for the “Best of the Year” to be revealed. So many movies, and going back through, I watched a lot but I also feel like I missed a lot. Hopefully, I do better in 2018 with actually watching the movies I actually WANTED TO SEE IN THE FIRST PLACE! But this post will have a few treats for you.
First, I’m going to name a few honorable mentions that I heard were good but I didn’t see. I may see them before the 2018 Oscars, but I haven’t seen them as of this list.
Best Movies I Didn’t See (But wanted to):
War of the Planet of the Apes, Okja, Dunkirk, Lady Macbeth, The Breadwinner, The Shape of Water, Wind River, Your Name., Detroit, Mudbound, Marshall, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri, All the Money in the World, I, Tonya, Molly Game’s, Blade Runner: 2049 (this one I won’t watch until I see the first one).
These next few movies were ones that I saw and loved, or really liked but they didn’t quite make the list. This does not mean they’re not as good as the ones actually on my list, it just means that they didn’t make it into the top 10. Click the titles and you can see my reviews for the movie.
Honorable Mentions:
Beauty and the Beast, Wonder, Hidden Figures, Girl’s Trip, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, The Red Turtle, Baby Driver, The Lego Batman Movie, John Wick: Chapter 2, Colossal.
Now without further ado, these are the movies that are my favorite of the year. This is my personal opinion and I’m sure everyone is not going to agree with me, but that’s okay. These movies were the ones that made a lasting impact on me and that I would consider my favorites and the best of the year. I reviewed all of the movies posted, so click the title and you can check out the reviews!
My Top 12 Best Movies of the Year:
I was gonna do just ten but then I forgot I saw Logan, and then I watched Call Me By Your Name and it was already hard enough to pick my list, so I decided to do 12. It’s my list. lol.
12. Sleight 
hero_sleight-2017
Now, I don’t think this movie is like the best thing ever, but I was so shocked while I watched it that I couldn’t stop talking about it after. Movies that I might consider the best, will also be movies that affected me in a way that I can’t stop thinking about it. Jacob Lattimore was fantastic here, and I think he has a bright future ahead of him. The story is one we’ve seen before, but it has combined elements that make it unique. I think it’s a great watch. I really enjoyed it!
11. Wonder Woman
landscape-1489502614-wonder-woman-new-poster
This is a monumental movie for everyone. Seeing a female lead comic book movie, where the character is handled so well that she can stand on her, now that’s something special. Gal Gadot was very good as Diana, she had innocence, but she was strong and it was so cool watching the fight scenes. Chris Pine also stood out as Steve Trevor, he wasn’t just a love interest, he was a strong character who stood on his own as well. This movie is special and it was great watching it. The scene in No Man’s Land and in the little city were probably the best scenes in this film. Fantastic. It was also great seeing so many women kick ass on Themyscira.
10. Spider-Man: Homecoming
smhc_post_master
I had a lot of expectations to see Tom Holland take on this role in his own movie. In the 20 minutes that he was in Civil War, he was great and I was convinced. Seeing this movie, was like watching the animated cartoon or reading some of the comics. While I like the other two actors who have played this role, I think Holland manages to encapsulate the role with perfect balance of being both Peter and Spider-Man. This movie is also not about his origins, but more along the lines of how he became the hero we recognize. He is also a kid, so there is an innocence about him as well. Michael Keaton is also a great villain, he was an every man but he was scary. I very much enjoyed watching this movie and I can’t wait to see where they continue to go with this young character.
9. Split
split-2-unbreakable-samuel-l-jackson-mr-glass
I love James McAvoy, he is such a great actor. He plays five different characters that we actually see in this movie. Technically, I would have loved to see him play all of the personalities but I’ll take what I can get. There is a “twist” involved, and without the twist, it’s a fantastic movie, and I know for some, the twist will make or break the movie. The story is also very interesting in how it’s handled. Great movie.
8. The Disaster Artist
disaster-artist
A surprising movie that doesn’t make fun of the worst movie in the world, but tells the story behind that movie. It could have easily been a parody of Tommy Wiseau and The Room, but instead it talks about life in Hollywood, and how hard it is to make it out there. It’s funny for everyone, especially those who enjoy the spectacle of the movie it talks about. This is probably James Franco’s best acting, he’s so natural and it’s obvious that he’s having so much fun in this role but he also keeps it from bordering on the “ridiculous” but instead the human.
7. Thor: Ragnarok
thor_ragnarok_main
The best of the Thor franchise. It took a chance to not only have a serious nature, but to balance the comedic side of the Thor character. It allowed Chris Hemsworth to show that not only is he an actor star as this character, but that he is funny. We were introduced to Valkyrie who was great, Loki and Bruce Banner return as good and interesting characters. This is the first time we truly see Hulk living in the spotlight, even talking and having conversations. It’s big, it’s colorful and bold. This movie is a lot of fun and the music… oh man. Definitely the best of the Thor trilogy.
6. Logan
logan-movie-x-men-wolverine-car-2024-chrysler-e8-300-limousine-film-model-interior
I almost forgot about this, but this is the Wolverine movie we all wanted. It was great to see Hugh Jackman’s swan song in this role. It was Rated R, brutal, beautiful and emotional. I cried watching this movie. Not only was Hugh Jackman the best he’s been in this role, but Patrick Stewart, who also has been Professor Xavier for the same amount of time, was also the best he’s been in his role. Dafne Keene, was X-23 was a standout and I hope she goes on to do great things. It was sad to see him go but Logan is a movie that is the bow to a great character.
5. Call Me By Your Name
thumbnail_26685
I just watched this movie and my entire list imploded. This movie IS SO GOOD. Armie Hammer is definitely a standout in it, but Timothee Chalamet was also very good. The relationship that blossoms in this film, happens very organically, and it does touch on how it is to experience love for the first time. It was very realistic. I was glued to the screen. So good.
4. Get Out
hero_getout
A very surprising movie, taking a very interesting look at how black people are viewed. It does have a lot of interesting things to say, especially in the first two thirds of the film, and while I had my problems with the third act, I think this movie had some great acting, great direction by first time director Jordan Peele. and the imagery says a lot. This is definitely an experience that should be enjoyed by movie goers.
3. IT
59de99dddfa76-image
I do not generally like scary movies, but this movie is fantastic and I had a great time watching it. The acting from the young actors is so good, that I cannot wait to see what else they do, the story is great and while it was scary to me, I enjoyed how the fears played into the character growth of the young people. I can’t wait for Chapter 2.
2. Coco
coco-pixar
Pixar has done it again. A movie that celebrates a culture and family. Coco is an emotional roller coaster of a movie in which things are discovered, earned and lost. I cried watching this movie, the music is mostly memorable but the singing is all great.
1. Lady Bird
lady-bird
This movie felt like I was watching someone’s life. It felt so real and like a documentary that it can relate to anyone’s relationship with their mother. Now, I’m sure that everyone doesn’t have an exact copy of this relationship between mother and daughter, but there are parts that relate. An extraordinary movie, with fantastic acting.
I hope you enjoyed this list. Please let me know what you thought were some of the best movies of the year were down below!
Also participate in the poll!
Don’t forget to like and follow this blog.

Movie Review: Atomic Blonde (2017)

Atomic Blonde (2017)

Summary: An undercover MI6 agent is sent to Berlin during the Cold War to investigate the murder of a fellow agent and recover a missing list of double agents.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. There are a lot of characters. The other agents John Goodman, Toby Jones, some of the villains and other characters. They’re all good in their roles but none of them are really standouts at least in the way the three I am going to talk about are. Or at least, not as important.
  • Charlize Theron as Lorraine Broughton. She is a top level MI6 agent, her story starts as she is being debriefed and is narrating the past events. Lorraine at this time is a weathered agent, someone who has obviously returned after being fed to the lion’s den (something like she says). She can definitely fight her butt off and she loves her clothes. She wears some bomb coats. I think Lorraine is interesting in some of the things she does, it’s hard to know what she’s doing it for exactly. Does she actually care or is it all a farce? I think Charlize Theron is a great actress, she’s beautiful and she is a commanding presence on screen no matter what. I also think her British accent is usually very good, however, I thought it was kind of not as good as it normally is but maybe that was part of the character…. dunno. Anyway, I feel like she such a great job that she almost transcends the writing of her character to be honest.
  • James McAvoy as David Percival. I definitely think he was the standout in the film. I love him so much, he is such a great actor. His character was also very interesting. You never knew what you were going to get with him. Whose side is he on? Does he fight for himself? David is supposed to be Lorraine’s contact when she gets to Berlin and it’s seen right away that she does not really trust him. I mean who would. But James McCoy is so good at that he makes you love him, but he also makes you hate him.
  • Sofia Boutella as Delphine Lasalle. I’m glad that she was such a standout in Kingsman that she has gotten bigger roles. I definitely wondered about her a bit in the beginning when we first see her show up. I thought her character was interesting and she was good in the role of being a bit innocent compared to the jaded Lorraine and David. She was good in her part, it was small but she was good for what she had.dd
The Fight Scenes. There are some good action scenes in this film, but there is one that I believe was one take and it was so tense. Lorraine is trying to keep someone safe and it starts off with two goons, she fights them and she is kicking butt and they are kicking her butt. More and more goons come and she just keeps taking names, but they are definitely getting licks in. Oh man, I was alert for that scene, it was so tense that I perked up and was wide awake.
The Soundtrack. This film is set in the late 80s, and all of the music is 80s music, some are covers and I really enjoyed them. I also really liked how they were used in the film. The song paired with the stylized opened credits was great.
The Cinematography. I thought this film look really good, it’s set in Germany in the 80s, so it’s very stylized and it looks like it was lifted right from that time period. It was very cold looking and crisp.
The Direction. I liked a lot of the different shots. There are moments while Lorraine is walking that the camera would spin around her, or it would be flipped upside down, and especially the one take fight. I always think that’s impressive, especially during fights scenes. It helps make it tense and gets me into the fighting.
Cons:
Really Slow. My goodness this movie starts off really slow. It feels like a glacial pace. We get a flashback, then it cuts to “10 days Later” and the story gets started but I was waiting for it to pick up. There was a lot of exposition in the beginning and I was bored.
The Walking Scenes. There are a lot of scenes of Lorraine walking to places, walking into rooms and I started to get irritated after a while. Obviously, Charlize Theron is very beautiful, she also used to be a model so she knows how to walk, and walk she did… a lot… into a lot of places.
Convoltued. One of the weakest aspects of this film is definitely the story. It wasn’t hard to get or to really follow, it was just a lot. I’m not going to spoil the story or anything, but so many people had their own agendas, their parts in the whole story that I really didn’t care about the story by time the movie was over.
Overall, I wanted to like Atomic Blonde a lot more than I did. I was bored for a majority of the film, it’s not bad but it’s just not really interesting. There’s a lot going on. I thought the acting all around was very good, the cinematography was good, the soundtrack was fun and engaging and I think there was some great direction choices and I think that James McAvoy was a great standout in the film. The action scenes were tense but the one take scene was the best one in the film, Charlize Theron was amazing in them. On the other hand, I think this film is very slow, especially in the beginning, the story is convoluted, there’s a lot going on and it feels like at times the movie forgets what the main point is due to everything going on. There are also some silly extra scenes that pad the film and do nothing other than show off Charlize Theron’s model walk.
Rating: 3.0 out of 5 stars. 
Have you seen Atomic Blonde?
What is your favorite Charlize Theron film?
What is your favorite film featuring a strong female action lead?

Spoiler Talk: Split (2017)

a6ac379976d46b38_mcdspli_ec100_h

This is definitely more of a thoughts than a review. If you’d like to read my spoiler free review of the film, then I will link it here. However, this particular post will SPOIL THE CRAP OUT OF THIS MOVIE! So, if you have not seen it, don’t read this, unless you don’t care. This also might be long lol, I just have to talk!!
Characters. So I’m going to go a bit more into depth about some of them, not all of them because I don’t need to go into depth with everyone. I mainly want to focus on James McAvoy’s characters.
“Dennis”
He is very much a meticulous person. He stands up straight, wears glasses, a black button down shirt that is to his neck, black pants and he’s very… clean. He has OCD, is very orderly, clean, he freaks out if something is dirty… he’s quite meticulous. There is a scene where he comes into the girls’ room and it looked like he was going to clean their bathroom but he freaks out about it being dirty. It was kind of funny because as far as we know, they’ve only been there a day and he’s already distraught that it’s dirty. He even tells them how to clean it and color coordinated their cleaning products.
He also spends majority of the time pretending to be “Barry” when he goes to see Dr. Fletcher. I thought it was interesting because when we first see “Barry”, he has this Boston (I think) accent and he seems to be very extroverted, into fashion. So when he’s in the office, trying to reassure her, he’s compulsively straightening items in her office. I remember going… so… why is he doing that? Does he have OCD too or is that “Dennis” faking it? I was right, total faker, it just seemed to weird to have two personalities with the same disorder. He was there to let her know everything was fine as the other personalities would take over for a moment to email the doctor. She is a bit suspicious but he manages to pull it off the first couple of times even though she asks. I think she should have been more suspicious.
We learn that he likes to watch young girls dance naked, which is why when he first enters their room, he studies each of them and manhandles Marcia out of the room. It’s also because of his OCD and his cleanliness that he freaks out and sends her back when she pees on herself (after being told by Casey to do so). I mean, he really freaked out about that.
Later, Dr. Fletcher manages to get “Dennis” to be honest about parading in her office as “Barry” due to his disorder giving him away. She’s never met him as the others have kept him from the light. They have a very interesting conversation where we learn quite a bit. Kevin was physically abused as a child as a three year old. His mother was also had Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, it was around this time when “Dennis” was created. He was there to protect Kevin, he’s the tallest and strongest of the personalities. Dr. Fletcher picks up on all of that, especially after learning a lot of about “Dennis” from “Barry” who is the leader of the personalities. Apparently, Dennis had been banished from the light (to take control of Kevin) because of his naked dancing girls thing.
“Patricia”
We don’t see a lot of her, but she’s also interesting. James McAvoy refers to her as a “kinky nun” in his interviews, which I find hilarious. She’s an older British woman. She treats “Dennis” and “Hedwig” like the’re younger than her (I mean “Hedwig” of course is but ya know what I’m saying), so I would assume she’s older.
She first is introduced when the girls wake up, they can hear her arguing with “Dennis” outside of their door. They can see her clothing through the crack of the door. Of course, they assume it’s a woman. I love their expressions when she opens the door. She’s the one who first mentions why they’re there. We learn from Dr. Fletcher that “Patricia” was also banned from the light due to her beliefs. Since things are revealed as the film goes on, that question is answered later thanks to what is learned from “Hedwig” and “Dennis”. There is supposed to be a 24th personality called “the Beast” who is a culmination of the personalities (willingly or not) and will arrive by train.
There is one scene where I was a little confused about “Patricia”. After having a girl’s moment with Marcia and Casey, she brushes and puts flowers in their hair, she takes them into the kitchen for sandwiches. She uses a steak knife to spread the mayo, she tapped the knife on the top of the jar and scraped it (like she was trying to get access mayo off of the knife, even though there wasn’t any). She freaks out when she her cut is crooked, like really freaks out. So, I couldn’t help but wonder if that was “Dennis” pretending to be “Patricia” or if he reacted badly to the crooked sandwich cut and took over for a split second. We didn’t see anything indicated from “Patricia” about her being anal over something like that… so it was curious to me.
The next time we actually “see” her is when they buy flowers to welcome “The Beast” and “Dennis” is in control, but it switches (masterfully thanks to a eye twitch by James McAvoy letting us know that “Patricia” does not need glasses) to “Patricia”. She welcomes the train and I think “Dennis” took back over to get on the train. My theory is that since “Patricia” seems to be the one who started this whole “Beast” thing, she wanted to be the one to “welcome” him but “Dennis” is the strongest and biggest so it makes more sense for him to be the one who welcomes “the Beast”.
“Hedwig”
Again, my favorite personality. He’s a nine year old boy and he’s first introduced when Casey wakes up. Claire and Marcia are looking at the door afraid, and “Hedwig” comes into focus.
“My name’s Hedwig and I have red socks.” My name’s Olaf and I like warm hugs lol. 
Casey immediately asks him how old he is, she tries to talk him into trusting them by asking him questions and getting him talking, “I just ate a hotdog” lol. He tells them what their purpose is for being there. He makes mention of a “Beast” and how they are special, et cetera (which is also his favorite phrase). He explains how the identities are set up in Kevin’s mind, how they’re in a room with chairs and there is a spotlight for the identity in control. “Barry” is usually the one who regulates who steps into the light to take over, but he’s figured out a way to keep “Barry” in his chair. Doing this, allows “Dennis” and “Patricia” to  come into the light. Apparently, the other identities never really let him “come out to play” because he was bad and they made fun of him et cetera. So basically, he’s been the one controlling who goes into the light and he’s on “Dennis” and “Patricia”‘s side because they are nice to him.
Next time we see him, Casey wakes up and he’s in the bed with her (I think he was “Dennis” the night before). He asks her if he can kiss her (he wanted to kiss Marcia but she’s in trouble) and it’s awkward “you might be pregnant now” lol. “Hedwig” starts talking about his CD player, he likes to dance to Kanye West (I think) and that it’s next to his window. Casey talks him into taking her to his room to show her his CD player. He’s unsure of it at first but she convinces him. They go to his room and he puts on music and starts to dance.
This is my favorite scene of the movie… it starts off funny (people were laughing, my younger brother was cracking up) but I started to get uncomfortable as the dance went on. I didn’t know the story behind it *** but it was weird and I stopped laughing to just watch him. It’s this moment that I started to think that though “Hedwig” is a child, he’s probably the most sinister and menacing out of the three we’ve seen so far. Casey asks about the window, turns out it’s just a drawing. Then shows her a walkie talkie that she tries to use to contact the other person- it’s “Dennis’s” and “Hedwig” stole it. He tries to take it back from her but she punches him and is trying to talk to the idiot on the other line, “Hedwig” tries to attack but when the camera pans back on him, it’s no longer “Hedwig”.
We see him again later at the end, when “Dennis”, “Patricia” and “Hedwig” are all talking while looking in the mirror.
***In an interview, Shyamalan said that if you pay attention to the dance, it’s telling a story. He wrote in the script that it’s like the beginning of a dance battle, and James McAvoy created this dance where “Hedwig” is telling about a zombie who bites someone’s neck, they die and they come back to life. Rewatching that scene with that knowledge, definitely puts it into perspective and so much creepier.
“The Beast”
Okay, this is where I feel like the movie will be made or broken for some people. “Dennis”, “Patricia” and “Hedwig” believe that a 24th personality is going to manifest in Kevin which is a “Beast”. His body will change, he will manifest superhuman speed, strength, resilience and agility (similar to actual animals). They go on the train and become the “Beast”. Sooooo he kills Dr. Fletcher (She went to the house after receiving like 50 million emails from “Barry”) and she tried to save the girls but is killed. Claire and Marcia try to escape their cells, but the “Beast” kills them both. Casey finds the doctor’s corpse and finds the note she wrote on before the “beast” comes to devour her. She learned that saying Kevin’s full name “Kevin Wendell Crumb” brings Kevin to the light. He’s out for like 2 minutes, he sees the doctor, Casey tells him he killed her and he tells her to shoot him. The other identities take over to talk her out of killing them, switching back and forth until the “beast” returns and attacks. The beast tells her (after she shoots him point blank with no affect) that he wants to rid the world of the impure, those who never suffered in their life but he sees her scars, says she is pure and runs away.
Casey Cook
So, in terms of the flashbacks from the movie, while I thought they were randomly brought in, I get their reasons. It shows Casey as a child with her father and uncle on a hunting trip. The first few scenes show her learning from her father, or just enjoying their company. All of that indicates why she’s so calm under pressure, or how she knows how to tell Marcia to pee on herself when “Dennis” takes her out of the room first. It’s obvious she’s scared but she remains the most level headed out of the girls. She’s a survivor and thanks to the flashbacks, it wasn’t hard to tell what she survived. As the film progresses, we see her interact with each identity. “Dennis” likes to take their clothing if it’s dirty and he keeps taking her shirts but she has on so many layers that unlike Marcia and Claire, she doesn’t end up half naked. “Patricia” in a weird way, likes to be with the girls because she is a woman and she likes to revel in their femininity (by brushing their hair and putting flowers in their hair etc.) Casey has the idea to befriend “Hedwig” and it works for the most part until she takes it too far and goes with him to his room, and sees that the window he’s talking about was a hand drawn one.
We see a few more flashbacks, one where her uncle gets her to play a game with him, that required taking off their clothes… which implies he molested her as a child. It helps put a lot of her character into perspective in a way the other girls just can’t be. So when the “Beast” appears and pursues her… it ends in a different way then it did for the others.
The Ending.
Pain is Purity
We learn the “Beast” is created because they want to rid of the world of the impure, of those people who do not know pain. We learn that “Dennis” stalked Claire and Marcia for a long time and concluded that they did not know pain which makes them perfect sacrifices. Casey just happened to be with them, he didn’t plan on her being there, so when the “Beast” pursues her, he stops once he sees the scars on her body. He says she’s pure and he leaves her to live.
What I find interesting is just how he deduces a person’s pain. Just because a person carries themselves a certain way doesn’t mean they aren’t in pain. I suppose he was looking for some sort of physical marker but I found that interesting.
Later, a worker finds Casey huddled in the room, he leads out of her the underground building and it turns out they were under a zoo, Kevin has been living under a zoo. She passes the stupid security man on the other side of that walkie talkie***.  They find the other bodies in the basement. Casey sits in a police car and a policewoman tells her that her Uncle is there, Casey gives her this look that makes the policewoman kind of recoil. It looked like she might finally tell someone what he’s been doing.
*** Now about this security guard… imagine being on duty at a zoo, someone radios you. They sound terrified, they tell you they were kidnapped, what their name is… but you think it’s a joke?? Is there no tv in your office? The news reported on these girls being missing, even said their names. I mean, seriously? If it was me, I would ask them to tell me where they are, and I would google the name (in case I didn’t see the news or any sort of internet anything) and then call the police. Why would you think someone was pranking you like that? That’s not funny. Idiot.
The Twist
I really don’t even want to call this a twist because I watched an interview where Shyamalan said he hated that he was associated with “twists” but like I said in my regular review… it kind of is for people who know his previous work. It was really hard trying to talk about it without actually giving it away but this movie is connected to Unbreakable, another Shymalan film with Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson. This is learned, at the end. There is a diner, the news is talking about Kevin and his multiple identities, how many he has, how the newest one seems to be a mashup of the very predatory animals in the zoo where he worked and they’re calling him “The Horde”. A woman reacts to this news, that it sounds familiar to some years ago with a man in a wheelchair and ‘what was his name?’, Bruce Willis answers her ‘Mr. Glass’ and she’s all ‘yeah!’.
I went OHHHHHH wow. I’ve never seen Unbreakable but I know enough about it to know who Mr. Glass is and what that person is to Bruce Willis so the movie made a bit more sense to me. If you have no idea what that movie is, then whatever you think of the movie will probably remain.
  • If you like it, then that won’t change because you didn’t know about the tie in regardless.
  • If you don’t like it, then that won’t change either because the tie in means nothing.
If you know Unbreakable then your thoughts might change.
  • It may have started out good, got stupid with the “beast” thing but now you know so exciting!
Split is an origin story to a villain in this superhero universe Shymalan created 16 years ago. I definitely need to watch Unbreakable. I watched in an interview that he created Kevin years ago, but he was finally able to revisit him now which I think is awesome considering the world of comic book movies we live in now. This would be pretty original and I’m excited to see where it goes next.
I still really like this movie lol.
After reading this spoiler review, did your thoughts change? What do you think now? Let me know in the comments below!
Don’t forgot to follow and like this blog!
~Alyx

Movie Review: Split (2017)

split-feature-screen1

Summary: Three girls are kidnapped by a man with a diagnosed 23 distinct personalities, and must try and escape.
Pros:
Cast and Characters. It’s almost a bit too hard to talk about the characters in this film as most of them are played by the same actor. But, I think it’s truly the performances that really elevate this movie, because without the two… maybe three leads we have, the movie could have been really silly.
  • James McAvoy as Kevin. So I’m going to try to do a breakdown of each one we see at least. But he is masterful, I love James McAvoy and I think this is one of his best roles, this is his best acting and I love him so much. The way he shifts between these characters, even if it’s not in the same scene is amazing. The little ticks he does for one personality, that is completely gone for the next. The way he walks for them, or react to things… it’s just so fantastic. I honestly would say he deserves some awards for this role. This character has Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID).
    • Dennis– We see him the most, he has violent tendencies and OCD. We learn a few things about him in particular. He’s quite scary. He wears this black button down shirt that is buttoned to his neck, black pants and glasses. He stands really tall and is pretty menacing. However, due to his OCD he freaks out about certain things. But he is definitely seen as “the leader” of the others at least.
    • Patricia– We see her a few times, she’s like this older English woman. She seems to be really into incense, tea etc. She comes off like a kind woman but she’s just so unsettling as well. I think there was something off about her in one scene which I will discuss more in my spoiler review.
    • Hedwig– He was my favorite character. He’s a 9 year old boy. He’s the one who tells the girls their purpose and Casey immediately tries to befriend him to help. It’s easy to see that he’s been influenced by Dennis and Patricia but there’s just a bit more about him. Because he’s a child, he’s unassuming but boy…it’s just so good.
  • Anya Taylor-Joy as Casey Cook. She is the lead teen, at first she comes off really odd, and when they’re kidnapped, she seems really chill compared to the other girls. However, as the stakes begin to raise, not only do we learn more about her through flashbacks, but we see start to do something. I think her character is tragic and I couldn’t help but wonder if there was something about her… that was different in the way that Kevin is but not exactly the same way. This is the first movie I’ve seen with her and I think she’s a great actress. There is something a bit weird about her but it works so well because she just seems like a natural in this role. She makes her fear real, her frustration, her confusion, her disbelief… it’s quite amazing.
  • Betty Buckley as Dr. Karen Fletcher. She was great. She’s a psychologist who tries to help Kevin with his DID. She believes that DID can, in extreme cases, cause physiological changes. She really tries to get other scientific people to understand the extreme cases which does sound nutty. The way she tries so hard to interact with each personality. The fact that she seems to have devoted so much time to Kevin and his disorder, she cares, but I think it’s safe to say that she’s also just a bit frightened of him. I thought Betty Buckley was great here, you really believe that she has been out in this field for quite some time and that she’s been working with Kevin for a long time.
The Story. It’s a little weird, especially as it begins to unfold more but I really like the idea of a man with DID who is the villain of the story. I like the build up, I like the suspense that is created as the film continues. It’s a slow burn so if you’re not patient, this may not be what you want.
The Humor. It’s not hilarious but there is humor in it. If you are looking to laugh hard, this isn’t the movie. Hedwig has some great lines and moments, same with Dennis and Patricia but a lot of times it’s uncomfortable laughter because it’s funny but then it’s also like… “are you about to flip on me?” type thing. It’s so great.
The Dance Scene. Without spoiling it, there is a scene where Hedwig takes Casey to his room to see his CD player. He plays, I think it’s Kanye West and he’s dancing… it’s so great and also horrifying. It turns into a quite intense scene. Another reason why I love Hedwig.
The twist. It’s so great. I am not really familiar with the item the twist is based in, but I know about it enough to get it. It’s at the end, and when it happens, the news is talking about Kevin and how he is being called “The Horde” due to his many personalities and a woman makes a comment where someone responds. When I saw it, I went “oh wow, is that…?” So now, I need to do my research to fully understand it but I totally get it and I’m sure those who are familiar with Shyamalan’s work will love it.
Cons:
The Supporting Characters. They’re are two other teenage girls that Dennis kidnaps and they’re here as well because they’re… serviceable but disposable. Hayley Lu Richardson seems like she’s a good actress but she was a bit annoying and over the top. Jessica Sula is soooo pretty and she’s probably the most forgettable as outside of maybe two scenes, she doesn’t really do anything.
The Flashbacks. So there are flashbacks in the film for the Casey’s character. At first, I wondered if what we saw her learning in the flashbacks were going to be a direct correlation to what her choices would be in present time. It ended up being that to an extent but it takes a moment for them to serve their purpose.
It Can Be Slow. The beginning starts off really slow I think. I mean, we jump right into the story, but there’s definitely a slow burn and it’s reeeallly slow. It takes quite a moment for things to get started. You can’t help but wonder why certain choices are made so late. It takes a long while to get moving, and that does affect the experience, you might start getting a little antsy.
Not Enough Personalities. I wish we saw more of the other personalities. The ones we saw were definitely interesting and I really enjoyed them. Yes, it had it’s humorous moments because of them being so different but after a while it gets a little menacing with the ones we saw. So it’s because of that, I wish we saw more of “Barry” or “Jade” or “Orwell” as they were the names we see on folders etc. Plus, I would have loved to see James McAvoy play a bit more of them. I can’t help but wonder if there are deleted scenes where he does.
The Twist. This is here because I think if you don’t know the other thing, then you won’t get it. It’ll be like “what?”, I don’t know the foundation of the twist as it’s directly related to something else but I know ABOUT it which helped me get it.
Overall, I really really enjoyed Split. This is James McAvoy’s movie, but of course Anya Taylor-Joy and Betty Buckley help as well because without these solid performances, this story could have been really silly. I do think that there is a part of that becomes really silly, in the twist area and while I understand it even without fully complete previous knowledge, I think people who don’t know, will totally think it’s stupid. Or, they might enjoy it because it’s crazy. My younger brother and sister (17 and 15) both enjoyed it and they have no idea what the twist meant. So it really depends. If anything though, come here for James McAvoy.
Rating: 3.9 out 5 stars.
I’m going to do a “spoiler review” for this because I just have to talk a bit more in depth about certain things. It’ll be right after this.

Movie Review: X-men: Apocalypse

X-Men: Apocalypse Review

I don’t own the trailer.
It’s here, the end of the world is here! X-men: Apocalypse is the third movie in the newest X-men trilogy consisting of X-men: First Class, X-men: Days of Future Past and X-men: Apocalypse and I have to say that I liked it overall but unlike other Marvel movies, I didn’t leave the theater feeling as if the movie was as good as I’ve been hearing from other casual moviegoers. I haven’t read any other reviews but I think the movie was just fine. I’ll talk about why I think that below. Remember, this is my opinion of this film, if you’ve seen it and agree with me, please let me know in the comments, if you disagree, also please feel free to respond in the comments as well.
Pros:
  • Cast and Characters. Of course James McAvoy as Charles Xavier and Michael Fassbender as Erik Lensher are great as they have been since First Class. Jennifer Lawrence returns as Mystique, Nicholas Hoult as Beast/Hank McCoy and Rose Byrne as Moira McTaggert. We also have lots of new characters as well which I have to say I enjoyed, well for the most part anyway. I’m not going to talk about all of them here but the ones I think were standouts.
    • Michael Fassbender does his thing as Erik, he is trying to live a normal life following the events in the 70s in Days of Future Past but things do not turn out the way he would like and he becomes one of the four horseman. Fassbender plays him with such emotion and vulnerability that it’s easy to feel sorry for him. He is still a young man and still continues to battle between his rage and his sense to protect those he’s known most of his life. It’s always such a struggle and I think Fassbender does that so well.
    • James McAvoy as Charles is wonderful. I adore McAvoy and I think he has such charisma as young Charles that it’s easy to believe in him and his hope for the future of the world together with humans and mutants. He’s also funny which helps keep him a humanized character instead of just being one of the most powerful mutants in the world. Charles also goes through both physical and mental struggles as he deals with watching his old best friend fall in with Apocalypse and his want to cleanse the world of the weak. He battles mentally with Apocalypse due to his mind being strong and the fear, the strength and the hope McAvoy presents in Charles is palpable.
    • Tye Sheridan joins the cast as Scott Summers/Cyclops and I already like the actor from Mud but I think he plays Scott well. I always remember Scott being the leader of the group, strong, smart and loyal. Tye plays Scott with a charm that shows he has the chance to be a great leader once he learns to fully accept his abilities and his natural inclinations. There is also fear and vulnerability in Scott, his abilities are powerful and he has yet to completely control them but as he learns, the confidence is there. Also, he does has some nice chemistry with Sophie Turner.
    • Sophie Turner is Jean Gray and I haven’t seen her in anything (I don’t watch Game of Thrones) and while I believe she had trouble with her American accent, I enjoyed her. She’s soft and cute but she holds herself as someone who is not only afraid of their power, but someone who has yet to fully understand the vastness of what she can do. Jean is probably the one of the most powerful mutants, if not the most powerful and watching her learn how to have the chance to be there is awesome. Sophia maintains a vulnerability as Jean that is sometimes maddening because I know what she can do if she tapped into it and stop being afraid. I do think she should relax her face a bit when she’s speaking because sometimes it looks as if she’s not emoting and it doesn’t come off scared or nervous but… indifferent which I’m sure isn’t the goal.
    • Kodi Smit-Mcphee is my favorite ever: Nightcrawler/Kurt Wagner and I’m so happy he was in this movie. I adored him! He’s so tall and lanky that whenever the camera panned to him, or focused on him, I kept looking at how long his neck was (lol). Kurt is awkward and funny, he’s from the circus so he hasn’t ever been to America or experience much in their culture so he’s excited to be able to experience the 80s era in the US. Which, I have to say, his outfit was definitely Michael Jackson “Thriller” era inspired. Whenever he’s afraid, even with that blue makeup on, he is able to express it well, he’s not sure his strength either and I know Nightcrawler can do some amazing things with his Bamf-ing ability. It’s interesting though with him being in this storyline and to think of him X2: X-men United and the connection. I know they “erased” those storylines in a way but still.
    • Evan Peters is great as Peter/Quicksilver. He’s funny, charming and will be a great addition if they continue to make more movies with this younger cast. There is a scene, towards the end, that I won’t spoil where he comes face to face with Magneto and it was great.
    • Oscar Isaac as Apocalypse. First, I think I might be a little biased because I love me some Oscar Isaac and I think he did well with what he had. His makeup and costume seemed very constricting, but he plays creepy and intimidating well. Even though there were like 5 voice bytes layered, his base voice, was silky and alluring which is useful for his role. He really tries to do his thing in this movie and I don’t think he was miscast because I think he could have killed it.
  • The costumes. This is set in the 80s so there is a wide variety of clothing from them to pull from which is hinted at Nightcrawler’s hair and Michael Jackson attire, Jubilee’s yellow jacket and Mystique’s crinkly hairdo. So far, this is the best Magneto costume, it actually looks like armor and a suit instead of fancy robes. Angel’s costume was very “comic book- esque”, as was Psylocke’s. The costumes at the end after the battle is over when the young heroes are in the danger room, were a nice nod to their comic book counterparts and also probably the closest to actual costumes so far. Not just black leather. I mean they’re not perfect, they could look a bit better but the nod was nice and the idea that we could see more comic book style costumes in the future makes me happy. Keep away from the spandex though.
  • Wolverine’s cameo. This is NOT a spoiler. If you’ve seen the trailers then you know he’s in it. There are times where I think they force Logan into the leading roles too much buuut when he’s kicking butt it’s the best thing ever.
  • The opening credits. This is a minor thing but of course I love the X-men theme period. It also goes through time from Apocalypse’s time to the 80s, that little tidbit was pretty nice.
  • The powers. Considering most of the abilities had by mutants are outwards, the way they are portrayed are handled well, at least some of them. Especially with the young ones not fully being able to control their powers. Showing the vastness of Charles’s telepathy, Magneto’s power being fueled by his emotions, Jean’s powers, Scott’s optic beams, Nightcrawler’s teleporting (there’s a scene towards the end where he teleports someone onto a jet and they actually show in a way, where he goes when he teleports!), and Quicksilver’s speed (another great scene).
Cons:
  • The villain. What? How can he be both in pros and cons? Well… Apocalypse is here because I think his character was built up too much but when he actually came around, it was hardly what it could have been. He’s built up to be this great villain who was considered a God in his time, and while the role of “cult leader” (as Oscar Isaac says) was played nicely because his role is to appeal to the rage, loneliness and despair these people are feeling. He takes them and makes them stronger, making them think he has their best interests in mind, that part of him is fine but the idea of him being this powerful mutant, who could be the end of the world wasn’t big enough, or scary enough. It kind of reminds me of the Age of Ultron and how is “age” was more of a week, same kind of thing. Also, his motivations aren’t entirely clear. Yeah, he was lost in time, it went on without him and now he’s angry but… why exactly? He says stuff like “humans and their machines” and rejects the ideas of using machines, and stuff about people being weak but his motives aren’t made entirely clear. Especially since he manages to persuade four people to follow him.
  • Mystique being a “heroine”. I don’t know if this has to do with me getting tired of Jennifer Lawrence or not, but I don’t like the idea of Mystique being put in the forefront like she is a major player. I don’t mind her growing up with Charles and being like his sister but it’s almost like they keep trying to make her the lead when she’s not. Her character isn’t that interesting to be a leading figure. I get that they wanted to make it seem like she’s a hero as she’s the one who stopped Erik from killing the President in Days of Future Past after Charles encourages her not to the same. I mean, young Ororo looks up to her, the younger people “look up to her”, Kurt is ‘you’re her!’ when he sees her… why exactly? Because she supposedly is “mutant and proud”? If that’s true, then why she is never in her full mutant form? It’s never really explained why they look up to her like that. Is it because they saw her stop Erik? I don’t know if the turnaround of watching her attempt to do the same thing and then her stopping Erik would have that much affect. She’s just Katniss with powers, it’s annoying and I still wouldn’t follow her. I liked her version of Mystique much better in First Class.
    • As a side note, I also have to say that the blue textured body outfit doesn’t look as good on Lawrence as it did on Rebecca Romijn and now I wish they stop using that look and stick with her comic book appearance.
  • Anticlimactic. While trying to not spoil anything, the climax should have been more epic. He’s Apocalypse for goodness sake! There is a mental battle with Charles which was fine but Apocalypse was upset that his plan was ruined. However he doesn’t really do anything about it. It should have been grand, “you screw up my plans everything is going down”. Most of the damage done is by his Horsemen which I think is a cop out. I get that they’re his “followers” or “protectors during the rituals” buuut he has all these powers but we only see him use five or six of them. I kind of wish this movie was split into two, this is one of the few times it should have split.
  • Slow on the start up. By this I mean, it kind of takes a while to get some traction. To an extent that’s okay but when it starts to feel like it’s dragging in places, it doesn’t work. The first half is the part that’s dragging the most, maybe it’s because it’s trying to introduce so much but it takes a while to get moving.
  • Mutant Acceptance. Now, I know Days of Future Past erased a lot of the past movies (X2 will always be the best and forever in the timeline to me), but I can’t imagine humans being accepting of mutants just because of what happened in the 70s. If anything, that should have made it worse and made people freak out about them more. I mean, Kurt is walking around in America without a problem, no one reacts to him. They could have at least shown some people reacting in fear, curiosity, or disgust or something. Even when Scott’s power is first revealed, he’s in school, the student is just like ‘whoa’ instead of thinking about the fact that this dude just shot beams from his eyes. X-men always represented the “minorities” in their treatment as a parallel to real life, no one is that accepting just because someone did something 10 years ago. I mean, the actual mutant students are more afraid of Jean than humans are afraid of mutants as a whole. It just seemed unrealistic to me.
  • No payout. I’m not sure if that’s the best to phrase it but what I mean is, points that happen in the beginning, that may have been started, weren’t concluded, or they happened so fast it was unsatisfying. One of those being Nightcrawler and Angel’s fight and Quicksilver finally meeting Magneto and knowing he’s his father (not a spoiler, it’s in the trailer).
  • Tonal Shifts. There aren’t many. There are bright moments in the movie, a lot of it dealing with the younger kids otherwise the movie is heavy and bleak and not in an effective way.
  • Characters being underutilized. There’s a lot of characters in this movie and some of them aren’t used well. Storm, Angel and Psylocke are all victims of this, it’s unfortunate that Apocalypse’s minions are the ones who are underdeveloped and underused.
    • Storm is the first one recruited and after her introduction, she doesn’t get more talking lines, nor is her power used to it’s full potential. I know she’s young, a teenager but nowhere near close. She does more than conjure lightening and float. Also, why exactly did she choose to join Apocalypse? It’s never actually said.
    • Angel is introduced in a cool scene, he talks once, later has a small scene where he’s recruited and that’s the last time he talks and I think it’s like two or three lines. He’s cool too, his metal wings are awesome but he barely does anything. Plus, why exactly did he join Apocalypse? Because he gave him metal wings? Meh… this could have been played up more considering his introduction is tied with Nightcrawlers (keep an eye out for that spoiler talk for more on this one).
    • Psylocke seems cool (Olivia Munn is fine but she definitely isn’t a strong actress), her motivations are bit more obvious than Storm and Angel’s but still nothing, she probably does the most in the fight at the end but she still does nothing throughout the movie.
Overall, it was interesting to see that after I saw the movie, the entire theater was silent. I see a lot of movies and I have never seen the theater, especially for a superhero movie and I wasn’t surprised to be honest. I don’t think it’s “one of the best superhero movies” or anything like that because it’s the weakest out of this new X-men trilogy, which is funny because that’s kind of referenced in the movie itself. But the movie lacked the same type of gravitas that some of the previous ones had. I mean, it’s not horrible but it doesn’t reach the potential it has, nor the hype surrounding it. It’s Apocalypse but it hardly lives up to that name. The stakes aren’t high enough, they don’t hardly reach the “epicness” it should have. Some characters are underutilized, some are overused and it’s no longer interesting, while some of the powers are handled well and come across as cool, others still look cheesy. Characters who had great chemistry in previous films (Charles and Erik) barely have screen time together and when they do, it’s the same rehashed conversations.
It’s anticlimactic, the villain lacks quite a bit but I don’t blame the actor at all, the younger team members shine a bit in their own right, some more than others (Kurt) but others are background unfortunately (Jubilee). If you’re a casual moviegoer the movie may fall flat, but if you are an X-men comic fan (or a fan in general) it may sate some of your needs. Personally, the movie didn’t do very much for me but it’s worth the watch for the new cast.
Rating: 2.79 out of 5 stars.
Click here for the spoiler talk.