Saban's Power Rangers

Saban's <em>Power Rangers</em>

The new Power Rangers movie is pretty damn great. Surprise! 

Who would’ve seen that coming? We live in a world where reboots rise eternal, and are mostly awful cash-grabs with no heart or substance. This film bucks that trend, embracing the campy chaos of its past with effective fan service and giant robot action, while also developing a real depth and soul along the way.

Read More

Review: Godzilla

Godzilla After a 16 year hiatus in U.S. theaters Godzilla returns to the silver screen bigger and louder then he's ever been. With its incredible CGI and fairly decent (if not cliched) story it definitely takes you on a ride. Whether or not you like that ride will depend on how patient of a person you are. It stumbles here and there but make no mistake, 60 years after it's original debut on the shores of Japan, Godzilla stakes its claim as the King of the Monsters. After a disaster at the nuclear power plant that he works in, Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston) is obsessed with finding out what really happened on that fateful day in 1999. 15 years later Ford (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), Joe's son and who has since joined the army, is called in to basically come and get his "crazy" father. We get the obligatory family dynamic rounded out by Elle Brody (Elizabeth Olson) and son Sam. After Ford realizes that his father isn't crazy he decides to join him on his quest. They eventually meet Dr. Serizawa (Ken Watanabe) and it really isn't difficult to figure out what happens from there.

As thin as the plot is, director Gareth Edwards and company somehow manage to make you care about these people as these scenes clearly show you why these characters are who they are. Cranston as usual, knocks his performance out of the park. Johnson does a decent enough job playing the stoic army vet and well, Olson really doesn't have much more to do other then give that thousand yard stare of her's. Still, she works with what she's given and isn't bad. Watanabe is just a doctor that's there to give sage advice when needed. Nothing more nothing less.

This is where the patience comes into play. Going to a movie called Godzilla you're expecting to see a giant monster tear up a city. Well, that does happen but it's a slow burn. I actually enjoyed the direction they took to get him on screen. When Godzilla finally arrives it's well worth the wait as it looks absolutely bad ass. You never see the creatures from their perspective. They're always shot from the human perspective which gives the monsters an incredible sense of scale. They're massive and completely unapologetic about destroying a city. They've got no grace, no regard for human life. They're basically Rick James saying "FUCK YO COUCH" as they annihilate Hawaii and San Francisco and I'm 100% ok with that. This however will be another topic of contention as well. We want to see giant monsters fight but the film tends to troll the audience. As soon as the proverbial feces is about to hit the fan there's a convenient cutaway to some human drama which I can probably guess a lot of audience members won't give a damn about. Trust me when the final reel hits and you've got your ringside seat. You'll be chanting "This is Awesome" like a WWE crowd.

The movie has its flaws and could stand to have a bit more Godzilla in it but I enjoyed the hell out of it. Even the music had a mix between that old school monster movie vibe and the basic horns and violins that every other action movie seems to have these days. The direction is very pretty, even when there's maximum destruction happening on screen. The acting is solid and the movie is just all around fun. I'm actually excited for a sequel which I'm sure is already in the pipeline.

[easyreview title= "Review of Godzilla" cat1title="Terrence's Rating" cat1detail="Overall Review" cat1rating="3.5" overall= false]

Review: Total Recall

Loosely based on the Philip K. Dick short story We Can Remember It for You Wholesale and the 1990 film of the same name, Total Recall is set on a dystopian futuristic Earth where chemical warfare has ravaged all but two areas, the United Federation of Britain (where apparently only one person has an British accent) and the Colony (a mix of Australia and Asia, or as I like to call it, Austrasia). Colin Ferrall plays factory worker Douglas Quaid.  Unhappy with his mundane existence, Quaid decides to visit Rekall, a company that specializes in implanting memories of a more exciting life.  While at Rekall, Quaid finds out that his memory has been altered before and that the life he's leading may not be real.  Quaid discovers that he was a double agent sent in to infiltrate and sabotage a resistance movement but eventually went rouge.  Quaid must find out whether his life as a factory worker, with wife Lori (Kate Beckinsale), is real or if his life as a member of the resistance, with lover Melina (Jessica Biel) is genuine.

This movie is very middle-of-the-road.  It does nothing of note to distinguish itself from the 1990 Paul Verhoeven film.  Say what you will about the 1990 Total Recall but it's over-the-top acting, corny dialog and ridiculous amount of unnecessary violence at least make that movie memorable.  This new Total Recall feels very bland and somewhat forgettable.  Colin Farrell does a decent job of carrying this movie.  He's very different from Arnold Schwarzenegger's corny, one-liner spewing, meat head.  Farrell's version of Quaid is an actual human being and not a walking stereotype.  However, its a double edge sword.  Farrell is played straight but ultimately not unique while Schwarzenegger's cornball dialog and terrible delivery is completely memorable (even if it is for the wrong reasons).  The rest of the cast is hit or miss.  Kate Beckinsale seems to enjoy being relevant again, Jessica Biel just seems lost, and Bryan Cranston seems to enjoy mixing it up with Farrell as one of the films villains.

I can't wholeheartedly recommend a movie that I almost fell asleep through.  If you truly want to check this out, wait for it to hit cable.  For everyone else, get your ass to Mars as its probably the furthest place you can be from this rather boring movie.

[easyreview title= "Review of Total Recall" cat1title="Micah's Rating" cat1detail="Overall Review" cat1rating="2.0" overall= false]