Is 2014 shaping up to be the year of the Blockbuster? With the amount of action adventure movies this year, it sure seems likely. I thought I'd touch base on 5 films that I've seen this year thus far and give brief reviews of each.
So, this year I've seen the Lego Movie, Divergent, 300: Rise of an Empire, that Awkward Moment, Robocop, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, I, Frakenstein, The Amazing Spiderman 2, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Godzilla, Captain America: the Winter Soldier, and Neighbors to name a few. Out of those, I'd say that there were 5 that have stood out thus far. Join me as I discuss them in order of good, better and best.
X-Men: Days of Future Past
I've grown tired of Wolverine. I'd hate to say it because he used to be such a favorite character of mine. Marvel and company seem to be handling him as if he is the ONLY character that people want to see in comic book movies anymore. I'm sure if they had their way that they would try and include him into the Avengers franchise just to make more money. (yes I know, he does become an Avenger eventually ... ) For a movie that is called "X-Men" you would think that a lot more of the focus would be on the GROUP rather than the dude with claws, I digress, my apologies. Anyways, X-Men: Days of Future Past is by far my favorite take on the X-Men universe by far. Which says a lot. Bryan Singer saw what was being done with atrocities like Last Stand, Origins, and the Wolverine and wanted to right the wrongs that had tarnished what he started. I commend him on basically eliminating all the garbage that came after X-Men 2 and giving the franchise a clean slate to do things right from here on out. That by far is the best thing that DOFP brings to the table. I could talk about the movie and it's plot, but that would take an entire post in of itself. (if you didn't know there is time travel involved and a lot of plot holes and questions start to pop up when you do that ... but if you go along with the main idea then you'll be happy with most of the ride) Truly, when you look at this movie as a sequel to not only First Class but as a tie in to X-Men 1 & 2 ... it did what many thought couldn't be done - it ties together 3 movies that you might not have thought possible while also eliminating movies that we would rather forget existed anyways. Kudos Bryan, kudos.
(the trailer has more emotional depth than the entire movie)
My Review: 7.5/10
Captain America: the Winter Soldier
So I'm not gonna lie - Captain Ameericuh 2 was actually a lot better than I had anticipated and I'm glad I saw it in theaters. The first film featuring Chris Evans as America's hero was a strong outing but nothing that I would write home about compared to the other films in the Marvel lineup. Though, it did fare better with critics compared to the Wolverine Origin mess of a movie, X-Men 3 and any of the Hulk movies. This time around, Marvel and crew found a great way to tie in Captain America 2 with the first Cap movie along with the ever popular Avengers by including characters from both films and plots that intertwine quite nicely. What I'll bring up time and time again about comic movies done right is that it always helps to have the talent behind them shine. Chris Evans is definitely owning the Captain character and the same can be said for Scar Jo as the Black Widow. We get a lot more in depth with both characters this time around and we also dive further into S.H.I.E.L.D. and the members that make up this organization. If you're on the fence about Captain America 2, I'd recommend it if anything to get yourself ready for the Avengers 2.
(not sure if this makes you want to see the movie or not...)
My Review: 8/10
the Amazing Spider-Man 2
So, next to Deadpool I have a hero that is near and dear to me - naturally I will always favor a Spiderman movie regardless of what others might think of it. For X-Men: DOFP to get a 91% on RottenTomatoes and Spiderman 2 to earn a mere 53% shows how skewed some fanboys and critics are. Now I would not give this outing of Spiderman a rating of 90% +, but it was easily better than X-Men. Spiderman has more original content and heart at it's core than X-Men: DOFP ever did. X-Men tried to be complex and clever by adding time travel, too many characters and plot holes that didn't need to be there ... while Spiderman focused on one main character, his relationships, and the struggles he deals with trying to balance being there for his family and friends and being the hero the city needs him to be. Not only that, but Andrew Garfield is SO GOOD at being Peter Parker and Spiderman, the acting credit alone warrants the movie getting a higher rating than a 53%. If I had to nit pick at Spiderman 2, I'd say the one thing they did poorly was Harry's character and introducing the Green Goblin too early in order to speed up the progression of future films. Though because they sped things up, we did get a chance to see arguably one of the most iconic moments in Comic book history play out on screen - and it was so fantastically well done. Even the wife, who knew what was going to happen, thought it was an impressive and resonating scene. (those that know the comics know what I'm talking about). In short, was it better than the 1st one, I don't think so - but what was better was definitely not only the character of Peter Parker, but the portrayal of Spiderman.(for example - his spider sense, his attitude and mockery of villains, his POV through the streets of the city, and just the special effects all together) I look forward to the rest of the films to come in it's wake. (Sinister 6, Venom, Spiderman 3)
(this trailer makes it look much more complicated than it is)
My Review: 8/10
the LEGO Movie
I didn't see this movie in theater - I'll admit it. Though, I wish I would have because everything about it was AWESOME! (for those of you who have seen it, you might get why I made that text bold ... *insert wink face here) You might be surprised that I'd rate the LEGO movie above the Amazing Spiderman 2 - well consider me surprised as well. I saw the commercials, it looked clever and different, but the marketing failed to make me buy a ticket and go see it. About 30 seconds into watching it at home, I was simply amazed. EVERYTHING that you could possibly make out of LEGOs is done in this movie. Whether it's water coming out of a shower head, dust rising up from something smashing the ground, or robots destroying a city - it's all done with LEGOs. (or ... at least CGI LEGOs) Seriously, the attention to detail like texture, the art on the pieces of LEGOs themselves, or even the way the characters move - is all done with precision you might not expect. Toss in a great story, a very surprising twist at the end that is not only fun and different but actually quite powerful in terms of a earning a resonating and emotional response from the audience - and you get what I'd dare say was the surprise movie of the year. Oh, and did I mention that it's hilarious the entire way through? Yeah, watch it!
(my favorite character in the movie is 1980's space guy)
My Review: 8.5/10
In 1998 we were given what we thought would be a modern take on the classic Godzilla, and I won't lie, I was a fan. I wouldn't say I was a huge fan, but I thought the movie was good enough at the time, and I probably didn't know any better. After seeing 2014's version of Godzilla, I was obviously unaware at how EPIC Godzilla could be if done right. This movie is the perfect blend of campiness, action, mystery, intrigue and amazing effects all mashed into a great throwback to what made Godzilla such a popular franchise. I went in with pretty high hopes and I came out smiling from ear to ear. What's even more impressive is that both my wife and Sta's wife came out with equally positive responses as well! I could critique the acting and the one liners that seem out of place or how they cut the astounding Bryan Cranston's part too short but I don't need to. The last 45 minutes to an hour of the film more than make up for any doubts you might have and are well worth the wait. I couldn't tell you the last time that I cheered out loud in a movie much less clapped before it was over. Definitely the highlight of 2014 thus far and I can't wait to own it on BluRay.
(yeah ... it's like that)
My Review: 9/10
So that's my Epic 5 Movie Review! Have you seen any movie this year - if so, what and were they any good? Let me know in the comments.
Thanks for Reading!
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