Friday, February 26, 2016

Oscar Predictions/Thoughts 2016

   The time is here again to look back on the ultimate critical acclaimed (more or less) movies of the year via the Oscars. I have to say I am incredibly happy with some of the choices on here, one of my more personally favorite choices ever. So for awards I care about, like usual, I will post my predicitons and wants:

Best Picture

  • The Big Short
  • Bridge of Spies
  • Brooklyn
  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • The Revenant
  • Room
  • Spotlight

Who I want to win: I think of this last, I would be equally happy with The Revenant or Mad Max ….surprised both made it onto a list like this, amazing amazing films in the top of 2015. I would also take that “surprise and liking” factor for The Martian as well.

Who I think will win: I would say at this point its a stacked category, thats a tie between The Big Short/The Revenant/Room/ And Spotlight. I think , Room aside, they all have a chance at it. Maybe the effort of the Revenant and prior awards will take notice though...

Best Director

  • Adam McKay – The Big Short
  • George Miller – Mad Max: Fury Road
  • Alejandro G Inarritu – The Revenant
  • Lenny Abrahamson - Room
  • Tom McCarthy – Spotlight

Who I want: I would be extremely happy with Inarritu winning again, but of course, I tink George Miller would be even more satisfying at this point in his career, cmon go to Valhalla!

Who I think: Probably a near tie between the statistically favored Inarritu from other awards, however he won one last year which puts him at a slight disadvantage to …. McCarthy for critic acclaimed Spotlight....hmmm! Could see a dark horse win by any others too.

Best Actor

  • Bryan Cranston – Trumbo
  • Matt Damon – The Martian
  • Leonardo DiCaprio – The Revenant
  • Michael Fassbender – Steve Jobs
  • Eddie Redmayne – The Danish Girl
Who I want: LEOOOO PLEASEEEEEEE, I THINK THIS IS FINALLY IT! An incredible performance, and hes been nominated so many times and failed I think he just needs to win, and this film was his best chance yet...allll the other awards shows agree for the most part..hoping for a victory cheer Sunday plz..

Who I think: Leo has his highest odds ever, but he is contended by equal shots by Fassbender and Redmayne....well see what happens...

Best Actress
  • Cate Blanchett – Carol
  • Brie Larson – Room
  • Jennifer Lawrence – Joy
  • Charlotte Rampling
  • Saoirse Ronan – Brooklyn

Who I want: I must admit I really have no comment here as I haven't seen any of the above films...... some good choices it seems though

Who I think: My critic watch tells me it's going to be Cate Blanchett rivaled by Larson, could be wrong though...

Best Supporting Actor
  • Christian Bale – The Big Short
  • Tom Hardy – The Revenant
  • Mark Ruffalo – Spotlight
  • Mark Rylance – Bridge of Spies
  • Sylvester Stallone – Creed

Who I want: It would be incredible to see Stallone win a Oscar too, so I'll have to lean towards him. But of course Hardy would be very welcome as well as he was nearly as impressive as Leo was in that film.
Who I think: Stallone actually has great odds from past awards, but I think Bale and Ruffalo contend for this as well ….

Best Supporting Actress
  • Jennifer Jason Leigh
  • Rooney Mara – Carol
  • Rachel McAdams – Spotlight
  • Alicia Vikander – The Danish Girl
  • Kate Winslet – Steve Jobs

Who I want: Considering it was the only film I have seen on this list, I will have to go with Leigh for the Hateful Eight, one of the many highlights there!

Who I think: I think Winslet has this locked down from what I can see and recent shows...

Best Original Screenplay

  • Bridge of Spies
  • Ex-machina
  • Inside Out
  • Spotlight
  • Straight Outta Compton

Who I want: Machina, Inside Out, or Compton all represent the great and out of left field noms that should be more of in the any of those!

Who I think: Could go anyway... I could see an Inside Out, or I could see a Bridge of Spies as making up for its other awards.

Best Adapted Screenplay

  • The Big Short
  • Brooklyn
  • Carol
  • The Martian
  • Room
Who I want: Here I'm going to have to really cheer for The Martian because apparently its a great adaptation and it is as a film and hopefully other wins elsewhere leaves here as its chance to shine

Who I think: Got a feeling on Big Short, Carol, and Room tied....

Best Animated Feature Film
  • Anomalisa
  • Boy & and the World
  • Inside Out
  • Shaun the Sheep Movie
  • When Marnie Was There

Who I want: Inside Out, Pixar's best in years!!!!

Who I think: Depending on how the academy feels on Pixar winning again, either Inside Out or Anomalisa for a more mature film..

Best Animated Short Film
  • Bear Story
  • Prologue
  • Sanjay's Super Team
  • We Can't Live Without Cosmos
  • World of Tommorow

Who I want: World of Tommorow for Herzfeldt's first win please, incredible.

Who I think: Buzz abounds on Sanjay's Super Team

Best Original Score
  • Bridge of Spies
  • Carol
  • The Hateful Eight
  • Sicario
  • Star Wars : The Force Awakens
Who I want: Finally, Star Wars, my favorite thing in the world and movie of the year 2015 on this site. You can guess who I want. Also would be open to the great Hateful Eight score too.

Who I think: For categories like this probably something within conventions like Bridge of Spies or Carol...

Best Sound Editing
  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • The Revenant
  • Sicario
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Who I want: I would be happy with any on here, but especially of course Star Wars

Who I think: I can see The Martian or The Revenant having the most critic potential for their ambience.

Best Sound Mixing

  • Bridge of Spies
  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • The Revenant
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Who I want: Once again I would be happy with any, but Star Wars too, win them all!

Who I think: Same as above reasons for Martian, Revenant. Or could be a token award for Bridge of Spies...

Best Cinematography
  • Carol
  • The Hateful Eight
  • Mad Max Fury Road
  • The Revenant
  • Sicario
Who I want: The Hateful Eight by far, one of the film's best suits. Would be happy with Mad Max or The Revenant too as always.

Who I think: I could see any about equal, perhaps Sicario dark horse, if not Carol or The Revenant too,

Best Film Editing

  • The Big Short
  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Revenant
  • Spotlight
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Who I want: Star Wars, duh... a lot of good ones here though.

Who I think: I can see The Revenant or Mad Max, or perhaps something like Spotlight.

Best Visual Effects

  • Ex Machina
  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • The Revenant
  • Star Wars: The Force Awaken
Who I want: Ahh my favorite category because always the movies right up my alley... and so I will have to choose Star Wars, its best shot of the night, but would be happy with any.

Who I think: I got a shiny and chrome Mad Max feeling, or Revenant for that bear.

Overall neat, we'll see how right I am and if not curious anyways!!! Tune in Sunday evening the 28th.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Deadpool Review

Director: Tim Miller 
Cast Headliners : Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccrin, Stefan Kapcic, Ed Skrein, etc
Original Release Date : February 12th, 2016

  There's been a lot of dream movies lately and coming,and Deadpool is without a doubt one of them. It's been a crazy journey. First the character finally appeared but was ruined in 2009's X-men: Origins : Wolverine, which contained a decent brief Wade Wilson but a terribly mis-adapted “The Dead Pool”. Since then rumors of a version that did the character justice have floated around and it seemed to be in production forever. Now, finally, several X-men films and a timeline reboot later, the time has come to deliver on the promise, and it certainly wonderfully does and is the movie a fan would always want and offers a fantastic starting point to this character even if meeting him for the first time.

As fitting for the character, the movie starts off in media res and plays around with time (amongst many other twisting of film conventions and 4th walls!) as it goes on. Right from the first moment we meet Wade Wilson aka Deadpool( Ryan Reynolds, reprising his role from 2009 but damn awesomley right this time) as he goes on hillarious, action-packed rampage tracking down someone named Francis/Ajax (Ed Skrein). The movie's incredibly hillarious and unique sense of humor is noticeable from even the opening credits and its a nonstop ride of blood and laughs over the next couple hours ahead.

Deadpool is the film's title and protagonist but its an understatement that he's the shining blazing wonderful highlight of the film as well. He has a cool perfectly-comics accurate costume (aided by subtle CGI) that luckily stays on for the main majority of the film and he has a regenerating mutant ability that puts Wolverine to shame (and is used in some hillarious moments). These make for incredibly awesome action scenes (aided by the frenetic craft of director Tim Miler) and also give him a sense of immortality not quite like any other super”hero” to grace cinema. But he's no hero, and that's a brilliant point. Deadpool, once he gets his powers, has an insanity to him and a willingness to murder that sets him apart. This leads to plentiful moments that have a combination of badassness, humour, and even a bit of a comment on the way other heroes do things. And all along the way Reynolds fully embodies the character's personality. From his voice , wacky lines, and even the way he moves he's LITERALLY as perfect to the comics as can be. This is true even whether he's in the full costume, unmasked with his mutated makeup face, or pre-powered. This role was the actor's destiny to play, and his wonderfully hillarious perfection in it definitely heals the wounds of his previous X-men appearance and even attempts at other comic movies like Green Lantern, RIPD, and Blade 3. Of course the first two on that list are mocked many times through the film which is another great example of the movie's wacky meta-ness. Everything is something the character would have done on the original iconic pages.

The humor beams out of the amazing central star but it comes from nearly every corner of the world around him as well. The movie is so fortunate to have been rated R as it wouldn't have worked so well as it does without it. The jokes are often dirty, vulgar, and extreme but always hillarious whether referential or uniquely slapstick. The swears and pop culture come constant, fast, and fitting. While one constantly enjoys the Merc with a Mouth's presence the supporting cast has some great lines as well. There's Deadpool's friend Weasel (TJ Miller), roomate Blind Al (Leslie Uggams) and the prime X-men connection that comes in a perfectly comics-accurate, overly noble, and properly Russian recast Colossus (Stefan Kapcic) and his trainee Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand). The character's share the films snappy pace and writing on their own and are magnified when interacting with Deadpool. The X-men connection is prime for some referential jokes but also the movie firmly stands alone as somehthing stand-alone and arguably more fresh and superior to its parent franchise.
Now it takes a bit for this portion to happen and its interestingly mixed with the above but there's also the film's aspect as a origin story and main motivation. Wade Wilson falls in love with Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) in his pre-mutated days. The romantic plot is of course very R-rated , but actually Vanessa and Wade's romance is surprisingly great as well. Baccarin does a great job as the very kind of person Deadpool would find interest in, and their moments together are humorously , darkly charming and memorable. She is arguably one of the best “love interests” around in this genre. Wade seeks a treatment for a immense cancer that develops, and his dark experience and her subsequent kidnapping is what sets the full plot full circle and provides a touching tone at parts.

If anything does not match the fireworks of bloody laughs and fun that is the rest of the film's quality, it's the villians and their role to the plot. Skrein's prime antagonist Ajax is ...there but utterly generic aside from being a pain in Deadpool's side enough to act as a catalyst ( a point which the film itself even mocks). Gina Carano's Angel Dust character is around for fierceness and a couple comedic moments but similiarly fades away in the tapestry of mania that is the rest of the experience. One never feels that anyone Deadpool faces is a threat, and they wouldn't be, but it adds to the aspect of the movie having a very simple plot and progression of events compared to its shenangins elsewhere. But when a person, hardcore comics fan or newcomer, comes to see a Deadpool movie its HIM that counts and it delivers on that. The rest of the opposing force and villians are just a excuse for fun antics, and maybe that's in itself another meta point.

Overall, and this is coming from someone who views Deadpool as one of their favorite comic “characters” (he's not exactly a hero and knows it) , it is nearly a perfect dream come true. This is mainly in the plentiful fun moments and Reynold's starring role. But even in its metaness, insanity, musical choices, and remix of superhero staples (there's a Stan Lee cameo of course) it is exactly the movie it should be and is. More than perhaps a few exceptions in film history, it feels like one is reading a Deadpool comic book that's come to life on screen. That aspect is what counts, and one cannot wait to see where this character goes because it starts of to an amazingly unique, fresh, and yet warmly familiar to hardcore fans start. The newcomer will love it as wel as it just bleeds fun in addition to its red. They made the chimichanga no doubt. 9 out of 10

Zoolander No.2 Review

Zoolander No.2
Director: Ben Stiller 
Cast Headliners : Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Will Ferrell, Penelope Cruz
Original Release Date : February 12th, 2016

  The original Zoolander was very much a film of its era of the late 90s/early 00s. Packed with cameos of relevant celebs of the day and having a zany attitude, set of jokes, and colorful fashion aesthetic it definitely stands as one of Ben Stiller's silliest and best in his repertoire. Now a sequel in Zoolander No.2 has arrived, and it mostly carries on from the good aspects of that, Blue Steel included.
The film nicely takes into account the gap since the previous release within the world. After the events of the first film, Derek Zoolander(Ben Stiller, also in the director's chair again) has become secluded in the hilariously desolate icy wilds of “extreme Northern New Jersey” after the death of his wife Matilda(Christine Taylor) and distancing from his son Derek Jr(Cyrus Arnold). Billy Zane (yes, himself as himself) gathers him and his old rival/friend Hansel (Owen Wilson) to attend Don Atari(Kyle Mooney)'s show in Rome and their careers and the film's comedic adventures begin again. Simultaneously, the world's most good looking people are being murdered (including a demise of Justin Bieber that's worth the price of admission) and Interpol agent Melanie Valencia(Penelope Cruz) seeks the help of the supermodel duo.

If this all sounds a little messy, it's because it is. The movie's plot is, as with the first, all over the place with its melding of fashion, comedy, and action. The cast is huge, bringing back pretty much EVERY SINGLE CHARACTER EVER from the first film aside from Derek/Hansel, including Mugatu(Will Ferrell) and his assistant Todd(Nathan Lee Graham) and more that have to be seen. This also includes cameo roles whether in character such as the wacky new additions as villainous Alexanya (Kirsten Wiig), the assistant VIP (Fred Armisen), or as themselves in hillarious and surprisingly meaningful turns by Kiefer Sutherland and Sting and more that have to be witnessed first hand. There's a lot of moments that showcase these cameos for comedic effect and one's enjoyment of the cameo parade is up to them.

But if one seeks the core “plot”, it's a decent silly time as well. Without a doubt out of the sea of characters Stiller's, Wilson's, and Ferrell's turns definitely are the best. They seem to have walked right off the screen of the first installment and have many great lines and moments. Their unique wacky personalities and moments are still here, although it must be said that a large portion of jokes (although not the majority) are just remixes or references to the fact of the same jokes from the old one. When the jokes are taken to the next level, they're humorous, but sometimes the audience may feel deja vu. That's not to say there aren't funny bits of new material as well.

Essentially the film is just a parade of the same wacky classic characters, colorful silly aesthetic , and celeb cameo moments one would expect out of the sequel that this is. It doesn't break major new ground and its short and thin plot holds it back from the originality of the first one. But if one liked that one, this is some overall pretty decent dumb laughs. 7.7 out of 10