Monthly Archives: July 2017

We Review: War for the Planet of the Apes “Monkey see, monkey do.” – MR

War for the Planet of the Apes

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
War for the Planet of the Apes
Caesar, with a  sawed off shotgun and Nova behind his back, on a horse with the film's logo and "Witness the End July 14" at the bottom.

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Matt Reeves
Produced by
Written by
Based on
Characters created
by

Starring
Music by Michael Giacchino[1]
Cinematography Michael Seresin
Edited by
Production
company
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release date
Running time
140 minutes[3]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $150 million[4]
Box office $174.9 million[5]

War for the Planet of the Apes is a 2017 American science fiction film directed by Matt Reeves and written by Mark Bomback and Reeves. A sequel to Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011) and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014), it is the third installment in the Planet of the Apesreboot series. The film stars Andy SerkisWoody Harrelson and Steve Zahn, and follows the confrontation between the apes, led by Caesar, and the humans for control of Earth. Like its predecessor, its premise shares several similarities to the fifth film in the original series, Battle for the Planet of the Apes, but it is not a direct remake of that film.

Principal photography began on October 14, 2015, in VancouverWar for the Planet of the Apes premiered in New York City on July 10, 2017 and was released in the United States on July 14, 2017, by 20th Century Fox.[6]The film has grossed over $174 million and received critical praise, with many critics highlighting the acting (particularly Serkis), story, musical score, action sequences and direction, and some calling it one of the strongest-ever conclusions to a film trilogy.[7]

Plot

Some time after the U.S. military was called to fight off an increasingly intelligent and dangerous army of apes, the apes’ clan, led by the chimpanzee Caesar, is attacked in the woods by a paramilitary faction known as Alpha-Omega. AO also has in its service apes that previously followed Koba, a human-hating bonobo who led a failed coup against Caesar. Some of the AO militants, including the gorilla Red, are captured and reveal that Alpha-Omega follows the leadership of a ruthless Colonel. Caesar releases the prisoners as a peace offering to the humans, but makes plans to relocate the clan across the desert, not wanting to suffer any more ape casualties. The night before their journey, Alpha-Omega infiltrates the apes’ base and the Colonel kills Caesar’s wife, Cornelia, and their elder son, Blue Eyes.

Leaving behind his younger son, Cornelius, Caesar departs to exact revenge on the Colonel. He is accompanied by Maurice the orangutan, Luca the gorilla and Rocket the chimpanzee, while the other apes head for the desert. Caesar’s party confronts traitorous albino gorilla Winter in an Alpha-Omega camp and learn that the Colonel has departed for a location called the “border”. Caesar inadvertently kills Winter, which causes him to worry that he is becoming like Koba.

During their journey, they encounter a man living in an abandoned village and kill him when he reaches for his rifle. After discovering his daughter, who is apparently unable to speak, Maurice insists that they take her with them. Further along, they discover some Alpha-Omega soldiers who have been shot and abandoned. Their examination of a survivor reveals that he, like the girl, cannot speak. Later the group meets Bad Ape, a chimpanzee hermit who lived in the Sierra Zoo before the Simian Flu pandemic. Bad Ape directs them to the border, a former weapons depot that was turned into a quarantine facility when the virus first began to spread.

When the group arrives at the border facility, Luca is killed protecting Caesar from an Alpha-Omega patrol, motivating Caesar to proceed alone. However, he is captured by Red after witnessing the rest of his ape clan being forced to build a wall with no food or water. The Colonel reveals to Caesar that the Simian Flu virus has mutated and now causes humans who survived the original strain to devolve, becoming mute and regress back to a primitive state, and that he is barricading himself in the facility to fend off rival military forces coming to defeat him because he favors killing any infected humans – including his own son – to stop the spread of the virus.

While Caesar is tortured with starvation, the mute girl, whom Maurice names Nova, sneaks into the facility to give him food and water. To prevent her from being discovered, Rocket allows himself to be captured as a diversion. Together, Caesar and Rocket are able to work out a means of escape via an underground tunnel that leads out of the facility. Maurice and Bad Ape use the tunnel to rescue the apes, and Caesar orders the others to escape while he goes to confront the Colonel. As the facility comes under attack by the rival military forces, Caesar reaches the Colonel, but realizes that he has been infected by the mutated virus.

 

Cast of Apes

Our Thoughts

If you like this franchise then you should love this movie. I didn’t love this one. I only liked it, mainly because I’m just not into the whole idea of it. That isn’t to say it isn’t a solid, entertaining flick. I just don’t get it. It was worth the price of a ticket, and had great special effects throughout. I will give it 3.5 stars, because it held my attention until the end, and wasn’t boring. Monkey see, monkey do. – MR

Find War for the Planet of the Apes and see the new trailer here.

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We Review, Spider-Man: Homecoming IMAX 3D “Fun for all! 5 Shining Stars” – MR

Spider-Man: Homecoming

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Spider-Man Homecoming poster.jpg

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Jon Watts
Produced by
Screenplay by
Story by
  • Jonathan Goldstein
  • John Francis Daley
Based on
Starring
Music by Michael Giacchino
Cinematography Salvatore Totino
Edited by
  • Dan Lebental
  • Debbie Berman
Production
company
Distributed by Sony Pictures Releasing
Release date
Running time
133 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $175 million[2]
Box office $268.7 million[2]

Spider-Man: Homecoming is a 2017 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics character Spider-Man, co-produced by Columbia Pictures and Marvel Studios, and distributed by Sony Pictures Releasing. It is the second Spider-Man film reboot and the sixteenth film of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film is directed by Jon Watts, with a screenplay by the writing teams of Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daley, Watts and Christopher Ford, and Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers. Tom Holland stars as Spider-Man, alongside Michael KeatonJon FavreauZendayaDonald GloverTyne DalyMarisa Tomei, and Robert Downey Jr. In Spider-Man: Homecoming, Peter Parker tries to balance high school life with being Spider-Man, while facing the Vulture.

In February 2015, Marvel Studios and Sony reached a deal to share the character rights of Spider-Man, integrating the character into the established MCU. The following June, Holland was cast as the title character, while Watts was hired to direct, followed shortly by the casting of Tomei and the hiring of Daley and Goldstein. In April 2016, the film’s title was revealed, along with additional cast, including Downey. Principal photography began in June 2016 at Pinewood Atlanta Studios in Fayette County, Georgia, and continued in New York City, before concluding in Berlin the following October. During filming, Watts, Ford, McKenna and Sommers were revealed as additional screenwriters. The production team made efforts to differentiate the film from previous Spider-Man incarnations.

Spider-Man: Homecoming premiered in Hollywood on June 28, 2017, and was released in the United States on July 7, 2017, in 3DIMAX and IMAX 3DHomecoming has grossed over $268 million worldwide, and received positive reviews, with critics praising Holland and the other cast’s performances, the light tone, and the action sequences. A sequel is scheduled to be released on July 5, 2019.

Plot

Following the Battle of New York,[N 1] Adrian Toomes and his salvage company are contracted to clean up the city, but their operation is taken over by Tony Stark‘s U.S. Department of Damage Control (D.O.D.C.). Enraged at being driven out of business, Toomes persuades his employees to keep the Chitauri technology they have already scavenged and use it to create and sell advanced weapons. Eight years later, Peter Parker is drafted into the Avengers by Stark to help with an internal dispute,[N 2] but resumes his studies at the Midtown School of Science and Technology when Stark tells him he is not yet ready to become a full Avenger.

Parker quits his school’s Academic Decathlon team to spend more time focusing on his crime-fighting activities as Spider-Man. One night, after preventing criminals from robbing an ATM with their advanced weapons from Toomes, Parker returns to his Queens apartment where his best friend Ned discovers his secret identity. On another night, Parker comes across Toomes’ associates Jackson Brice / Shocker and Herman Schultz selling weapons to local criminal Aaron Davis. Parker nearly drowns intervening, and is rescued by Stark, who is monitoring the Spider-Man suit he gave Parker and warns him against involvement with the dangerous criminals. Toomes accidentally kills Brice with one of their weapons, and Schultz becomes the new Shocker.

Parker and Ned study a weapon left behind by Brice, removing its power core. When a tracking device on Schultz leads to Maryland, Parker rejoins the Decathlon team and accompanies them to Washington, D.C. for their national tournament. Ned and Parker disable the tracker Stark implanted in the Spider-Man suit, and unlock its advanced features. Parker tries to stop Toomes from stealing weapons from a D.O.D.C. truck, but is overpowered and trapped inside the truck, causing him to miss the Decathlon tournament. When he discovers that the power core is an unstable Chitauri grenade, Parker races to the Washington Monument where the core explodes and traps Ned and their friends in an elevator. Evading local authorities, Parker saves his friends, including his fellow classmate and crush Liz. Returning to New York City, Parker persuades Davis to reveal Toomes’ whereabouts. Aboard the Staten Island Ferry, Parker captures Toomes’ new buyer Mac Gargan, but Toomes escapes and a malfunctioning weapon tears the ferry in half. Stark helps Parker save the passengers before admonishing him for his recklessness and taking away his suit.

Parker returns to his high school life, and eventually asks Liz to go to the homecoming dance with him. On the night of the dance, Parker learns that Liz is Toomes’ daughter. Deducing Parker’s secret identity, Toomes threatens retaliation if he interferes with his plans. During the dance, Parker realizes Toomes is planning to hijack a D.O.D.C. plane transporting weapons from Avengers Tower to the team’s new headquarters. He dons his old homemade Spider-Man suit and races to Toomes’ lair. He is first ambushed by Schultz, but defeats him with the help of Ned. At the lair, Toomes destroys the building’s support beams and leaves Parker to die.

Our Thoughts

This movie was well acted all the way around. It was funny, serious, and at times gripping. We watched the IMAX 3D version and the effects were spot on. If you follow my reviews, you’ll know I love Marvel movies, and this film is no exception. Fans of anything Avenger, will love this one. One thing I have to say is, just like most Marvel movies, this one especially sets a great example of how important education is for our youth. Fun for the whole family and well worth the price of a premium ticket. 5 shining stars. – MR

Find Spider-Man: Homecoming and see the new trailer here.


We Review, Transformers: The Last Knight “3 stars… entertaining but unrealistic even for a sci-fantasy flick” – MR

Transformers: The Last Knight

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Transformers The Last Knight poster.jpg

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Michael Bay
Produced by
Screenplay by
Story by
Based on Transformers
by Hasbro
Starring
Music by Steve Jablonsky[1]
Cinematography Johnathan Sela[2]
Edited by
Production
company
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release date
Running time
149 minutes[4]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $217–260 million[5][6][7][8]
Box office $496.5 million[9]

Transformers: The Last Knight is a 2017 American science fictionaction film based on the Transformers toy line created by Hasbro. It is the fifth installment of the live-actionTransformers film series and a sequel to 2014’s Transformers: Age of Extinction. Directed by Michael Bay, the film features Mark Wahlberg returning from Age of Extinction, with Josh DuhamelGlenn Morshower and John Turturro all reprising their roles from the firstthreefilms and Anthony Hopkins joining the cast. Bay and Wahlberg have stated they will not return for another sequel.[10]

The film premiered at Odeon Leicester Square in London on June 18, 2017, and was theatrically released in the United States on June 21, 2017 by Paramount Pictures, in 2D, 3D, and IMAX 3D. It received negative reviews and, with an approval rating of 15% on Rotten Tomatoes, is the worst reviewed film of the series. The film has grossed over $496 million worldwide against a budget of $217 million, making it the eighth highest-grossing film of 2017.

A spin-off, entitled Transformers Universe: Bumblebee, is scheduled for release on June 22, 2018. A sequel to Transformers: The Last KnightTransformers 6, is set to be released in 2019.

Plot

In 484 AD, King Arthur‘s wizard Merlin forges an alliance with the Knights of Iacon, a group of twelve Transformers who have hidden on Earth. The Knights give Merlin an alien staff, and combine into a huge dragon to help Arthur triumph over the Saxons.

In the present day, most of the governments on Earth have declared Transformers outlawed, and the multinational Transformer Reaction Force (TRF) has been formed to destroy the alien robots. Despite the absence of Optimus Prime, who left the planet to search for his creator, new Transformers continue to arrive regularly; the newest ship to arrive crash-lands in the half of the ruins of Chicago, where it is found by a group of children. When a TRF mecha confronts the kids, they are saved by Izabella, a survivor of the Battle of Chicago and her Transformer companions Sqweeks and Canopy, but Canopy is killed by the TRF in the process. Bumblebee and Cade Yeager arrive and help them escape, but Yeager is unable to save the Transformer in the ship. Before he dies, the knightly robot attaches a metallic talisman to Yeager’s body—an act observed by Decepticon scout Barricade, who reports this to his leader, Megatron.

On the far reaches of the Solar System, Optimus discovers that the Transformers’ homeworld, Cybertron, now disassembled into pieces, is heading directly for Earth. He finds the being in control of Cybertron’s movement, the sorceress Quintessa, who professes to be the maker he is searching for. The staff which the Knights gave to Merlin was stolen by Quintessa, and using her powers, she places Optimus under her control, dubs him “Nemesis Prime” and charges him with recovering it. Earth, she reveals, is actually Cybertron’s “ancient enemy” Unicron and she intends to drain his life force so that Cybertron can be restored.

TRF member and former Autobot ally William Lennox brokers a deal between the TRF and Megatron, releasing from their custody a squad of Decepticons that will help Megatron recover the talisman from Cade. Megatron hunts Yeager down and follows him to his junkyard hideout in South Dakota, where he and many of the surviving Transformers are holed up. After the Decepticons retreat, Yeager is approached by Cogman, a Transformer envoy of British Lord Sir Edmund Burton, who takes him and Bumblebee to England to meet his master. There, Burton arranges a meeting between Yeager and Viviane Wembly, an Oxford professor. Wembly has just been kidnapped by the Autobot Hot Rod, using his long-term disguise as her Citroën DS. Burton explains that he is the last living member of the “Witwiccan” order, an ancient brotherhood dedicated to guarding the secret history of Transformers on Earth. He also reveals that Viviane is the last descendant of Merlin, and that she must find and use his Staff to prevent the impending destruction of Earth by Cybertron.

Our Thoughts

I suppose if you are invested in this series it was great, but I have only watched a few Transformer movies, and those after they made it to cable. It is just too unrealistic. A Camero that changes into a car sized robot is cool, and possible, but a Camero that changes into a robot the size of a jumbo jet, is out of proportion. The staff of Merlin, when it is in the human girl’s hand, is maybe four feet tall, and then when Optimus Prime holds it, it is taller than the girl. These little things didn’t take away from the awesome transformation effects, or the semi-cool plot, but I noticed them. Kids and fans of the franchise will love it. I give it 3 stars for being entertaining but unrealistic even for a sci-fantasy flick. – MR

Find Transformers: The Last Knight and see the new trailer here.