Friday, July 29, 2011

Red Tails...

Finally leaving his Star Wars roots alone momentarily, George Lucas has written what looks to be a pretty awesome movie:

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Season of the Witch

Overall, not a bad film, but not everything I had hoped for.
Season of the Witch is about two warriors that, against the Church's orders, leave the crusades after taking part in the killing of innocent women and children. To be pardoned from their crime of abandonment, they are ordered to transport a witch accused of spreading the Black Plague to a monastery where she can be stripped of her evil powers.
I'll admit that the movie was interesting and it kept me intrigued throughout the entire journey. The movie felt like a mediator between The Crucible and Van Helsing, sporting a very deceptively mind-twisting villain with some fantastical creatures and action scenes thrown in. The special effects were convincing (minus a few jumpy slow-motion effects) and the art direction of the film was very well conceived. While the acting was good,the movie should have been played out more like a thrilling drama and less like an action film. The intense scenes of the film were well done and enough to keep you on edge. So, overall not a bad ride.
On the other hand, the characters weren't engaging enough for me to care what happened to them, there were some very predictable moments, the "redshirts" were pretty obvious, there were a few loopholes that made me grind my teeth a bit, and the climax of the film was a bit of a put-off. So, it was about half and half. The film was fun, but don't expect a great movie.

**Spoiler Alert**
Considering the title of the film and the build-up (is she or isn't she?), I was disappointed when the girl turned out to be a demon instead of a witch in the end. We've had plenty of exorcism movies as of late and we haven't had a good witch movie in a while. I was sad when it stopped echoing The Crucible and started retelling The Mummy.
Considering that the demon was incredibly evil and killed those that stopped it from reaching its destination (how the characters suddenly deduced this plot was a bit rough), why did it save the altar boy? Demons don't feel charity and the boy had no real purpose in the journey; as a matter of fact, he wasn't even supposed to be there. What made the demon suddenly decide to save this useless boy? Didn't make sense to me.
I laughed at the final words of the film. After the demon was exorcised and the girl was herself again, minus any clothing, she tells the altar boy that she has no recollection of her heroes or the journey. Then, as they ride off into the sunset, her voice-over explains that most people will think the plague was a passing virus and that she will spread the truth because she was there! She just said she had no idea what had happened!
Also, they talk about needing more Holy Water and then go on a search to find it... and then never use it.
**End Spoiler Alert**

As far as questionable content:
The movie is wrought with violence ranging from battle scenes to hangings. Pretty violent stuff. Because the film deals with the Bubonic Plague, there are a lot of disturbing images of the victims.

P.S. - The image in this post is copyrighted by Rogue.

The Adjustment Bureau

I have always thought that movies based on Philip K. Dick stories (A Scanner Darkly, Next, Paycheck) have always been translated into film really well - some better than others (Blade Runner, Minority Report). While not my favorite adaptation, this film was a great thriller and enjoyable watch.
The story is about David Norris (Matt Damon) , a young and popular congressman, who one day meets a beautiful and mysterious woman (Emily Blunt) and falls head-over-heels for her, only to discover that there are strange circumstances that arise to keep them apart.
Matt Damon and Emily Blunt's on-screen chemistry is awesome. Both played their characters really well and both seemed to play off of each other even better. If nothing else draws you into this movie, the relationship between these two will. Matt Damon is just an awesome actor. Period.
As with most other Philip Dick stories, the plotline is very mind-bending and supernatural. The story progresses extremely well and leads up to a satisfying climax. Many people were disengaged by the conclusion of the film, and while I thought that it could have been solved better, I was still contented with how it ended and enjoyed the ride getting there. The content could have been delved into a little further and I would have liked to know more about what happened to some of the other characters in the film, but there was nothing that put me off in this film. It was a fun flick and I recommend it if you're in the mood for a good thriller.

As far as questionable content:
There is some swearing throughout, including two strong uses of the F-word, and a brief sex scene in which you don't see anything below the shoulders.

P.S. - The image in this post is copyrighted by Universal Studios Home Entertainment.