Wednesday, October 11, 2006

X-Men: The Last Stand

Now I like my comic book films, I like comic books (although I've not got into the X-Men comics), and I liked the first two X-Men movies directed by Bryan Singer.

For X3, Brett Ratner takes over the reigns and you can tell, the simple thing is to say "all action, no soul", even when killing people off and having our heroes cry about it, there's still something lacking.

The effects are pretty good, although you can tell more focus has been put on them than the characters themselves, and thus they don't have the impact that they should've had.

The script's pretty weak. I've listened to the Creative Screenwriting Podcast where they did a Q&A with Simon Kinberg and Zak Penn the writers, (Zak who also worked on X2 with the aforementioned Mr Singer) and even they sounded disappointed with how it turned out. Clearly without Singer's guidance, what made the X-Men films good has been lost.

Now the film was entertaining enough, but it was slow and trundled along in places, people waffling away, even themselves seeming at times disinterested in the (slowly) unfolding events.

There was no character growth that I noticed at least, something you'd expect from the third film in a franchise with recurring characters, Wolverine seemed a little weak and simply there for the wisecracks (which doesn't bode well for the Brett Ratner directed Wolverine spin-off), Storm was just plain dull, Magneto (played by the ever brilliant Ian McKellan) was probably as good as the other two, but had a line "what have I done", clearly thrown in for the American audience as a facial expression would've done the trick far better.

Some of the newer characters, Ice Man (forgive me if that's not his proper name) et al were quite good, we'll try and forget about Vinnie Jones' shocking Juggernaught though :/

By the end of the film, I was glad it was over but at the same time, the mushed together ending was far too saccharin laced and left far too many questions un-answered, but not in a "good-cliffhanger-way", more in a "doh-forgot-to-write/film-that-way"

God help us for X4, Wolverine and Magneto :/

X-Men : The Last Stand : 5/10

Thursday, October 05, 2006

The Protector

More cheese penguin? This film is ladled with it...and it's damn good fun!!

Tony Jaa, the Thai bastard lovechild of Jackie Chan (who makes a humorous cameo) and Bruce Lee, kicks more ass in the follow up to his bone breaking..breakthru movie Ong-Bak (also bloody good).

Now I was watching the un-subtitled version, so mostly Thai, some sporadic Aussie and oddly enough English accented dialoge and apart from the odd lengthy dialogue and exposition scene, I could pretty much follow what was going on, depsite the really bad cutting, but then it's a martial arts action flick, not a David Lynch mind-fuck.

Basically Mr Jaa, has his elephant nicked and he has to go to Sydney to kick ass and get it back.

If you like martial arts movies (proper ones, not the ponce like Crouching Tiger..) you'll heartily enjoy this!

The Protector - 7/10