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We watch and review fantasy and Sci-Fi movies. (Both new releases and classics via - Amazon Streaming) We also tweet about fantasy genre news from across the blogosphere. Follow us @WizardWyrm on twitter.

We Review: It – Chapter Two “A different ending than the book, and some cool effects make it worth watching. 3.5 stars” – MR

It Chapter Two

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 
It Chapter Two
ItChapterTwoTheatrical.jpeg

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Andy Muschietti
Produced by
Screenplay by Gary Dauberman
Based on It
by Stephen King
Starring
Music by Benjamin Wallfisch
Cinematography Checco Varese
Edited by Jason Ballantine
Production
companies
Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures
Release date
Running time
169 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $60–70 million[2]

It Chapter Two is a 2019 American supernatural horror film and the sequel to the 2017 film It, both based on the 1986 novel It by Stephen King. The film is directed by Andy Muschietti and written by Gary Dauberman. Set in 2016, 27 years after the events depicted in the first film, it stars James McAvoyJessica ChastainBill HaderIsaiah MustafaJay RyanJames Ransone, and Andy Bean as the adult versions of the Losers Club. Jaeden MartellSophia LillisFinn WolfhardChosen JacobsJeremy Ray TaylorJack Dylan Grazer, and Wyatt Oleff reprise their roles as the younger Losers, while Bill Skarsgård also returns as Pennywise the Dancing Clown.

Talks for an IT sequel began in February 2016. By September 2017, New Line Cinema announced the sequel would be released in September 2019, with Dauberman writing the script and Muschietti expected to direct. Principal photography began in June 2018, at Pinewood Toronto Studios and on locations in and around Port HopeOshawa, and Toronto, Ontario, and wrapped on October 31, 2018. The film was produced by New Line Cinema and Vertigo Entertainment.

It Chapter Two premiered at the Regency Village Theater in Los Angeles on August 26, 2019, and was theatrically released in the United States by Warner Bros. Pictures on September 6, 2019. Much like its predecessor, It Chapter Two received praise from critics for its acting (particularly Hader and Skarsgård), themes, and faithfulness to the novel, though criticism was aimed at its runtime and lack of scares compared to its predecessor.

Plot  ***SPOILER ALERT***

In the late summer, in Derry, Maine, Adrian Mellon wins a stuffed toy at the local carnival. After seeing a little girl who lost to him look upset, he gives it to her before reuniting with his boyfriend, Don Hagarty. Their kiss is interrupted by a gang consisting of John “Webby” Garton, Steve Dubay, and Christopher Unwin, who shout homophobic slurs, causing Adrian and Don to walk out of the carnival. Adrian and Don are later ambushed by the gang, and are severely beaten, Adrian to near death, before he is thrown off of the bridge into the water below. While he is gasping for air, he notices Pennywise the Dancing Clown near the edge offering help. Don catches up to Adrian, but not before he witnesses Pennywise brutally murder Adrian. Mike Hanlon, the only member of the Losers’ Club to have stayed in Derry, overhears on the police scanner and rushes to the scene. Upon realizing that It has returned to their old town, he calls the members of the Club and invites them back to town.

Bill Denbrough is a successful author and screenwriter but often gets criticism for his stories’ endings. Beverly Marsh lives a glamorous life as a fashion designer but endures an abusive relationship with her husband. Ben Hanscom has become fit and is a successful architect. Richie Tozier has become a stand-up comedian and has had several failed relationships. Eddie Kaspbrak is a risk assessor and has married a woman similar to that of his mother. Stanley Uris is a partner in a large accounting firm. All find the call from Mike to bring up bad memories, but ultimately agree to come, save for Stanley, who later commits suicide.

The remaining members of the Losers’ Club meet at a local Chinese restaurant and bond over old memories, while sharing stories of their new lives. When the time comes to open fortune cookies, they reveal a cryptic phrase that reads “Guess Stanley Could Not Cut It”. Soon after, the remaining fortune cookies begin moving on their own and opening, revealing disturbing monstrosities inside including a spider with a baby’s head, a one-winged bat, and a pre-birth bird covered in blood. Richie smashes a chair on the table and, after Mike reveals the real reason why he called them back to Derry, Richie and Eddie decide to leave. Bill comes with Mike back to his house, who drugs Bill’s water with special properties that help Mike explain what he has learned about Derry over the years. He reveals that he met with a Native American tribe and showed him the Ritual of Chüd, a way of destroying It once and for all. They return to the group’s hotel, and convince Richie and Eddie to stay and finish what they started.

Mike says that in order for the ritual to work, each Loser must have an artifact from their past to place in the ancient pottery. Beverly goes back to her old house and finds an old pack of cigarettes she hid, in addition to Ben’s love letter, before being attacked by a grotesque naked monster who masqueraded as Mrs. Kersh, a woman who lives there. Bill goes to the sewer where Georgie was killed and recovers his paper boat before having a run-in with a boy from the restaurant named Dean who happens to live in his old house. He tells the boy to get out of Derry and never come back, but the boy says he’s going to the carnival. Ben goes back to their high school and finds his yearbook page, which Beverly was the only person to sign. Eddie goes to the pharmacy and recovers an inhaler. Richie goes to the abandoned arcade and finds a game token, where he remembers a bad memory of him being taunted for his sexuality before being attacked by a giant Paul Bunyan statue. They use a shower cap from their clubhouse as a placement for Stan, and Mike finds the rock that started their rock fight against Henry Bowers and his gang.

Meanwhile, Henry Bowers is visited by Pennywise in the mental hospital where he has resided since the Losers’ attack nearly 30 years prior. He kills a guard and escapes, later ambushing the Losers at their hotel and stabbing Eddie in the side of the face. Eddie takes it out and stabs Henry back, but he escapes before Ben and Beverly can catch him. Bill finds a message from Pennywise alluding to the little boy from earlier, and realizes that Pennywise is going to the carnival. Bill arrives and chases Dean into the mirror maze, but is too late, as he watches Pennywise break a mirror and violently kill him. Bill, traumatized by his failure to save both Georgie and Dean, returns with a mission to murder It himself. The rest of the Losers, after killing Henry, follow Bill to the abandoned Neibolt house.

They climb into the sewers and make their way into a chasm where Mike sets up the steps necessary for the Ritual of Chüd, including burning the artifacts they gathered from their old memories. He instructs the others to chant a phrase, during which It’s “deadlights” appear and make their way into the ancient pottery. He seems to trap them, but a red balloon grows under the lid and out from the pottery, getting larger and larger in size until it pops and reveals a giant version of Pennywise with spider-like legs and blades on the ends of them. The Losers are thrust into nightmarish scenarios in which they are forced to escape from, resembling memories from old places in Derry they spent time in. Bill is forced to confront the fact that he pretended to be sick the day of Georgie’s death, inadvertently causing it, while Beverly finally realizes it was Ben who wrote her that letter years ago. Richie is caught in the deadlights, but Eddie saves him; however, Eddie is impaled and killed by Pennywise shortly after.

The Losers regroup and realize Pennywise can be killed if they make him feel smaller than he really is. They insult him and make him physically grow smaller and weaker, until they are able to tear his heart out and crush it together. Richie tearfully tries to save Eddie, but the group tells him that they have to go as the chasm crumbles around them. They return to the quarry where they once swam together, and Beverly and Ben share a kiss.

After these events, Bill is beginning to write a new book while Mike is moving out of Derry to start a new chapter of his life. Bill is told by Mike about a letter from Stan that he wrote to every member of the Losers’ Club before killing himself, explaining why he did it. Meanwhile, Ben and Beverly are in a relationship and Richie returns to the bridge where he had once carved the initials of him and another person, now revealed to be Eddie. He re-carves them before tearfully leaving.

Cast

The Losers’ Club

  • James McAvoy as Bill Denbrough:[4]
    The stuttering yet resourcefully determined former leader of the Losers’ Club who, out of revenge for the demise of his younger brother Georgie, fights his killer, Pennywise, during the summer of 1989. He promises that he and the other losers will return to Derry if It comes back. As an adult, Bill is a successful mystery novelist, and is married to a successful actress named Audra Phillips.

  • Jessica Chastain as Beverly Marsh:
    The only female member of the Losers’ Club, who was abused physically and sexually by her father, was bullied at school over false rumors of promiscuity, and was Bill and Ben’s love interest. As an adult, she has become a successful fashion designer in Chicago while enduring several abusive relationships that include her marriage to Tom Rogan.

  • Jay Ryan as Ben Hanscom:[5]
    A member of the Losers’ Club who fought against It and was bullied as a child because of being overweight. As an adult, he is fit and a successful architect living in Nebraska.

  • Bill Hader as Richie Tozier:[4]
    Bill’s bespectacled best friend and fellow member of the Losers’ Club, whose loud mouth and foul language often get him into trouble. As an adult, Richie becomes a successful stand-up comic in Los Angeles, contrary to his occupation as a disc jockey from the novel.

  • Isaiah Mustafa as Mike Hanlon:[6]
    A member of the Losers’ Club who fought against It. As an adult, Mike is the only one to stay behind in Derry and becomes the town librarian and summons the other Losers back to Derry when It resurfaces. Mike also has a serious substance abuse problem stemming from being traumatized by the events in his childhood.

  • James Ransone as Eddie Kaspbrak:[7]
    A member of the Losers’ Club who is the epitome of a hypochondriac, overly exaggerated by the immense number of objects in his medicine cabinet. As an adult, Eddie is a successful risk assessor living in New York City and is married to Myra, who is very similar to his Munchausen syndrome by proxy-stricken mother Sonia.

  • Andy Bean as Stanley Uris:[7]
    A member of the Losers’ Club who fought against It. As an adult, Stan becomes a partner in a large Atlanta-based accounting firm and is married to Patty Blum, a teacher.

Our Thoughts

While I love the book, and like the first film version, I also liked this one well enough to review it.  Stephen King has his usual cameo appearance, but in this one he states he didn’t like the ending (of a character’s book) thus hinting this ending will be different, and I was glad it was. There are some cool “shock” scares, and some creepy effects, so it was worth the cost of a ticket. 3.5 stars – MR

 

Find It: Chapter Two and see the new trailer here.

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We Review: Angel Has Fallen “4.5 stars and an Academy award to Nick Nolte. No, seriously!” – MR

Angel Has Fallen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Angel Has Fallen
Angel Has Fallen poster.jpg

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Ric Roman Waugh
Produced by
  • Gerard Butler
  • Alan Siegel
  • Matt O’Toole
  • John Thompson
  • Les Weldon
  • Yariv Lerner
Screenplay by
Story by
  • Creighton Rothenberger
  • Katrin Benedikt
Based on
Characters
by

  • Creighton Rothenberger
  • Katrin Benedikt
Starring
Music by David Buckley
Cinematography Jules O’Loughlin
Edited by Gabriel Fleming
Production
company
Distributed by Lionsgate
Release date
  • August 23, 2019 (United States)
Running time
121 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $40–80 million[2][3]
Box office $23.2 million[2]

Angel Has Fallen is a 2019 American action thriller film directed by Ric Roman Waugh. It is the third installment in the Fallen film series, following Olympus Has Fallen (2013) and London Has Fallen (2016). The film stars Gerard ButlerMorgan FreemanJada Pinkett SmithLance ReddickTim Blake NelsonPiper PeraboNick Nolte, and Danny Huston. The plot follows United States Secret Service agent Mike Banning, who must race against time to clear his name after being framed for an attack on the US President, Allan Trumbull.

The film was officially announced in October 2016, and Roman Waugh was hired in July 2017. New members of the cast were added in early 2018 and filming began in February of that year around Bulgaria and the United Kingdom.

The film was released in the United States on August 23, 2019, by Lionsgate. It received mixed reviews from critics and has grossed $23 million.

Plot ***SPOILERS ***

Secret Service agent Mike Banning (Gerard Butler) undergoes training at a private military facility, and is recommended for the position of Secret Service Director by the President of the United States, Allan Trumbull (Morgan Freeman), to replace retiring Director David Gentry (Lance Reddick). Banning hides the fact that he is suffering from migraines and insomnia with regular visits to several doctors, and begins taking medication to cope with recurring back pain.

While the President is on a rural fishing trip, armed drones attack his protection detail, with only Banning surviving and saving the President; both are incapacitated, with Trumbull in a coma. FBI Agent Helen Thompson (Jada Pinkett Smith) finds substantial evidence that Banning may be responsible for the attack, with the van used to carry out the attack containing Banning’s hair and DNA. Banning is subsequently arrested.

En route to a detention facility, Banning and his transport are ambushed. He escapes after killing the assailants, revealed to be agents who took part in his training exercise. Banning calls his wife Leah (Piper Perabo), letting her know he is alive. The call alerts Thompson to Banning’s location, leading to a car chase. but Banning escapes again before heading to his father’s home in the woods.

With Trumbull still comatose, Vice President Martin Kirby (Tim Blake Nelson) is sworn in as Acting President. It is revealed that Wade Jennings (Danny Huston), Banning’s friend and former fellow Army Ranger now CEO of paramilitary company Salient Global, has framed him. Via surveillance cameras, Banning and his father Clay (Nick Nolte) observe Jennings’ men approaching the house; Clay detonates explosives around the perimeter, killing the would-be attackers as he and Banning escape, and Banning reveals to his father that he has a wife and daughter. Leah and her daughter are on the verge of being kidnapped by Jennings’ men when Clay saves them. Kirby reveals to the press that Banning is responsible for the assassination attempt with support from the Russian government.

Finding the bodies around Clay’s cabin, Thompson deduces that Banning was set up. Thompson and another agent meet Jennings, who kills them both. Trumbull awakens from his coma, and Kirby is revealed to be involved with Jennings. Kirby plans to retaliate for the President’s “attempted assassination” by attacking Russia. Banning reaches Trumball’s hospital and is captured, but Trumbull orders his release. Banning leads Trumbull to safety with help from Gentry and other loyal agents, as Jennings destroys the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit by increasing the oxygen and nitrogen supply to unstable levels, causing an explosion.

Banning hides Trumbull and Gentry as Jennings’ men pursue them. After a long gun battle, Jennings attempts to escape via helicopter, which Banning destroys. They face off hand-to-hand, and Banning mortally stabs Jennings. Banning is exonerated while Trumbull and Gentry arrest Kirby for treason due to the evidence uncovered by Thompson. Clay decides to live with Banning and his family. Feeling guilty over his failure to protect Trumbull, as well as his undisclosed ailments, Banning offers his resignation, but Trumbull forgives his mistakes and offers Banning the promotion to Director of the Secret Service, which he accepts.

Our Thoughts

A great addition to the franchise. Some of the scenes were a little weak, with the director opting to use blurred generic backgrounds, instead of high-tech, more modern military environments, but it worked because of the above average acting. I swear Nick Nolte deserves an Academy Award for his role. If you like intense, action-packed, “save-the-world,” shoot ’em ups, this one is for you! 4.5 stars and highly rated. – MR

 

Find Angel Has Fallen and see the new trailer here.


We Review: #Stuber “Highly Recommended and a hilarious 5 stars” – MR #StuberMovie

Stuber (film)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Stuber
Stuber poster.jpg

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Michael Dowse
Produced by
Written by Tripper Clancy
Starring
Music by Joseph Trapanese
Cinematography Bobby Shore
Edited by Jonathan Schwartz
Production
company
Distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Release date
  • March 13, 2019 (SXSW)
  • July 12, 2019 (United States)
Running time
93 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $16 million[1]
Box office $11.2 million[2]

Stuber is a 2019 American action comedy film directed by Michael Dowse and written by Tripper Clancy. It stars Kumail NanjianiDave BautistaIko UwaisNatalie MoralesBetty GilpinJimmy TatroMira Sorvino, and Karen Gillan, and follows an Uber driver who unwillingly becomes part of a police officer’s arrest operation.

The film had its world premiere at South by Southwest on March 13, 2019 and was theatrically released in the United States on July 12, 2019 by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. The film was produced by 20th Century Fox for that studio before the close of the March 2019 merger of that studio with Disney. The film received mixed reviews from critics, who criticized it for not taking full advantage of its potential but praised Nanjiani and Bautista’s chemistry.

Plot ***SPOILERS***

A meager Uber driver named Stu is forced by an aggressive Los Angeles Police Department detective named Vic to drive him around town to catch a notorious drug lord named Oka Teijo. For Vic, it is especially personal, as Teijo murdered Vic’s partner.

Along the way, Stu deals with Vic’s mad behavior while trying to express his feelings to his friend Becca. Stu and Vic confront each other about Stu’s inability to man up while Vic is called out for his toxic masculinity and negligence toward his daughter Nicole.

Eventually, the two face Teijo at the location of his drop, where Vic finds that Captain Angie McHenry is a dirty cop who has been working with Teijo and was planning to frame Vic for murder to get him off their trail, while Stu does admit he loves Becca, but then realizes it wouldn’t work since he knows she doesn’t feel the same way and that they shouldn’t even be friends.

Stu and Vic work together to take the villains down, but Nicole ends up in the mayhem when she finds them and is nearly shot by Teijo. Stu takes the bullet, and Vic almost kills Teijo before Nicole stops him, and the cops arrive to bring Teijo to justice.

After Stu and Vic recover, they become good friends, and Stu starts to date Nicole, although Vic isn’t sure how to feel about that.

Our Thoughts

This movie was great. Non stop fun and excitement, a great date flick or just a fun night out with friends or family. The fight scenes were not ridiculously acrobatic or portrayed by super human feats, though Batista is a hulk, if there ever was one. Good energy and pacing. A few of the laughs almost caused soda to spew. Highly Recommended and a hilarious 5 stars – MR

 

Find Stuber and see the new trailer here.


We Review: #SpiderMan – Far From Home “#Marvel continues to deliver. 5 stars – MR”

Spider-Man: Far From Home

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Spider-Man: Far From Home
Spider-Man Far From Home poster.jpg

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Jon Watts
Produced by
Written by
Based on
Starring
Music by Michael Giacchino
Cinematography Matthew J. Lloyd
Edited by
  • Dan Lebental
  • Leigh Folsom-Boyd
Production
company
Distributed by Sony Pictures Releasing
Release date
  • June 26, 2019 (Hollywood)
  • July 2, 2019 (United States)
Running time
129 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $160 million[2]
Box office $110.8 million[2]

Spider-Man: Far From Home is a 2019 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 sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017) and the twenty-third film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film is directed by Jon Watts, written by Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers, and stars Tom Holland as Peter Parker / Spider-Man, alongside Samuel L. JacksonZendayaCobie SmuldersJon FavreauJ. B. SmooveJacob BatalonMartin StarrMarisa Tomei, and Jake Gyllenhaal. In Spider-Man: Far From Home, Parker is recruited by Nick Fury and Mysterio to face elemental threats from another dimension while he is on a school trip to Europe.

By October 2016, discussions had begun for a sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming, with a release date given to the film before the end of the year. Holland was confirmed to return in July 2017, with Watts and the writers also confirmed to return by the end of that year. In 2018, Jackson and Gyllenhaal joined the cast as Fury and Mysterio, respectively. Holland revealed the sequel’s title ahead of filming, which began in July 2018 and took place in England, the Czech Republic, Italy, and the New York metropolitan area. Production wrapped in October 2018. The film’s marketing campaign attempted to avoid revealing spoilers for Avengers: Endgame prior to its April 2019 release.

Spider-Man: Far From Home premiered in Hollywood on June 26, 2019, and was theatrically released in the United States on July 2, 2019, in 3D and IMAX. The film was positively reviewed, with critics calling it a “fun and satisfying sequel” and praised the performances of the cast, particularly Holland and Gyllenhaal.[3] It has grossed $110 million worldwide.

Plot ***Mild Spoilers***

In Mexico, Nick Fury and Maria Hill encounter a storm, which is revealed to be the Earth Elemental. A superpowered man, Quentin Beck, arrives to fight the creature. In New York City, the Midtown School of Science and Technology restarts its academic year to accommodate the students who were among those resurrected by Bruce Banner eight months earlier.[N 1] The school organizes a two-week summer field trip to Europe. Peter Parker, while still distraught over Tony Stark‘s death,[N 1] plans to confess his growing feelings for classmate MJ. He attends a fundraiser for the homeless, coordinated by his Aunt May. There he disconnects a call from Fury and leaves after being posed questions about Stark.

In Venice, Italy, during the trip, Parker and his friends are among those attacked by the Water Elemental, which proceeds to wreak havoc on the city; Beck arrives and destroys the creature, while Parker attempts to help. Fury sabotages Parker’s trip and gives him Stark’s glasses, which were meant for his successor. The glasses are equipped with the artificial intelligence E.D.I.T.H., which has access to all databases of Stark Industries, and can launch weapons at command. Beck claims the Elementals killed his family and that he hails from a different reality, one among many in the Multiverse. Parker rejects Fury’s plea for help and rejoins his class, but Fury covertly redirects the school trip’s itinerary to Prague, where the Fire Elemental is projected to strike. It appears there at a carnival, but Beck, with Parker’s help, destroys it. Fury and Hill invite Parker and Beck to Berlin to discuss the formation of a new superhero team. Parker considers Beck worthy of being Stark’s successor and bequeaths him the E.D.I.T.H. glasses.

MJ deduces Parker is Spider-Man. They discover that a piece of detritus she retrieved during the battle is a projector that presents an image of the Air Elemental. The two realize Beck is a fraud. At a nearby pub, Beck — a former holographic-illusions specialist at Stark Industries who was fired for his unstable nature — thanks his team of fellow ex-Stark employees. Parker travels to Berlin and meets with Fury, only to realize that the version before him is an illusion created by Beck. Parker battles multiple illusions and is ultimately hit by a train….

Our Thoughts

This should have been called, Night Monkey. I enjoyed this one a lot, and recommend it highly, as a great time for all ages. They do an excellent job of keeping the scope of the film small enough for Spider-Man. The teen love angle(s), and the adult love angle are entertaining, and as with all things Marvel, it has a bucket full of belly laughs. The audience cried, the audience cheered, and they clapped at the end. Fun for all. A Summer must see! Highly recommended. 5 stars – MR

 

Find Spider-Man: Far From Home and see the new trailer here.


We #Review: #MIB: International “A fun night out. No real suprises other than Les Twins. At times, these famous dancers turned alien, steal the show. 4 stars” – MR

Men in Black: International

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Men in Black: International
Men in Black International (Official Film Poster).png

Theatrical release poster
Directed by F. Gary Gray
Produced by
Screenplay by
  • Art Marcum
  • Matt Holloway
Based on
Starring
Music by
Cinematography Stuart Dryburgh
Edited by Christian Wagner
Production
companies
Distributed by Sony Pictures Releasing[1]
Release date
  • June 11, 2019 (New York City)
  • June 14, 2019 (United States)
Running time
115 minutes[2]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $94–110 million[3]
Box office $129.1 million[4][5]

Men in Black: International (stylized as MIB: International in promotional material) is a 2019 American science fiction action comedy film directed by F. Gary Gray and written by Art Marcum and Matt Holloway. It is a spin-offof the Men in Black film series, which is loosely based on the Malibu/Marvel comics of the same name by Lowell Cunningham. The film stars Chris HemsworthTessa ThompsonKumail NanjianiRebecca FergusonRafe SpallLaurent and Larry Bourgeois, and Liam NeesonEmma Thompson also reprises her role from the third film, while Tim Blaney reprises his role as Frank the Pug from the first two films.

Talks of a fourth Men in Black film began after the release of the Men in Black 3 in 2012. In February 2018, Hemsworth signed on to lead a spin-off while Gray was hired to direct, and Thompson joined the cast the following month. Filming took place in New York CityMoroccoItaly and London from July to October 2018.

Men in Black: International was theatrically released in the United States on June 14, 2019 by Sony Pictures Releasing, under its Columbia Pictures label. The film received negative reviews from critics, who criticized the “lackluster action and forgettable plot”, although the chemistry between Hemsworth and Thompson was praised.

Plot ***SOME SPOILERS***

In Brooklyn in 1996, Molly Wright witnesses her parents being neuralysed by agents of Men in Black (MiB) while she helps an alien escape, avoiding neuralysation herself as her parents assumed that she was asleep.

Twenty-three years later, having been rejected in applications to the FBI and the CIA on the grounds of her “delusions” regarding the evidence of alien life, she manages to track down an alien landing and track the MiB agents back to MiB headquarters in New York. Although she is caught upon entering the agency, Molly makes an impression on Agent O, arguing that she has proven her skills in finding out about the organization’s existence and has no life outside of her search for the agency. Convinced, she is awarded probationary agent status as “Agent M” and assigned to the London branch of the organization.

Once in London, M meets High T, the head of the London branch, and manages to arrange for herself to be assigned to assist Agent H in his meeting with Vungus the Ugly, a member of an alien royal family who is a close friend of H. During their night out with Vungus, they are accosted by mysterious alien twins who can manifest as pure energy, who fatally injure Vungus. Vungus passes a strange crystal on to M before he dies, claiming that he cannot trust H with it as H has changed since they last met. Although Agent C expresses disappointment for H’s dealing with the situation, M points out that few people knew Vungus’ location when he was attacked, which leads to the conclusion that Vungus’ location was betrayed by one of the MiB agents present when High T assigned H to guard him. Nervous over the possibilities of a traitor in MiB itself, High T assigns C and M to conduct an investigation while H is demoted to desk duty, with the investigation suggesting that the twins had DNA traces of the Hive, a parasitic race who invade other planets by merging with the DNA of the conquered species. M learns that H and High T were responsible for fighting off a Hive invasion at the Eiffel Tower in 2016, using a wormhole included in the original migration to Earth, but since that time H has fallen from grace, demonstrating an uncaring attitude towards his duties and apparently only keeping his job due to High T covering for him due to the soft-spot they have for each other.

H convinces M to join him in following up a lead in Marrakesh, where they recover “Pawny”, the last survivor of a small group of aliens who were attacked by the Twins. Pawny pledges new loyalty to M, but they are subsequently trapped by MiB agents coordinated by C, who has recovered video footage of Vungus passing the crystal on to M and believes that she is the traitor. With the aid of one of his alien contacts, H is able to acquire a rocket-powered bike and escape with M and Pawny, where they learn that the crystal Vungus gave M is actually a weapon powered by a compressed blue giant. As they repair the damaged bike, H’s alien contact manages to steal the weapon and take it to Riza Stavros, an alien arms merchant and H’s ex-girlfriend.

Traveling to Riza’s island fortress, the trio attempts to infiltrate the base and recover the weapon…

Cast

  • Chris Hemsworth as Henry / Agent H, a suave agent in MIB UK branch.
  • Tessa Thompson as Molly Wright / Agent M, a rookie MIB recruit assigned to the UK branch.
    • Mandeiya Flory portrays a younger Molly.
  • Kumail Nanjiani as Pawny (voice), a tiny alien warrior that H and M befriend.
  • Liam Neeson as High T, the head of MIB UK branch.
  • Rafe Spall as Agent C, an MIB agent in the UK branch who is sceptical of H’s past.
  • Rebecca Ferguson as Riza Stavros, an alien intergalactic arms dealer and H’s ex-girlfriend.
  • Laurent and Larry Bourgeois as The Twins, a shape-shifting alien duo seeking a dangerous artifact.
    • Laurent Bourgeois also portrays the human that The Twins kill and copy his appearance on.
  • Emma Thompson as Agent O, the head of MIB.
  • Kayvan Novak as Vungus the Ugly, a member of an alien royal family and friend of H.
    • Kayvan Novak also portrays Nasr and Bassam
  • Tim Blaney as Frank the Pug (voice)
  • Spencer Wilding as Luca Brasi
  • Marcy Harriell and Inny Clemons cameo as Molly’s parents in a flashback.
  • Thom Fountain and Drew Massey as the Worm Guys (voices), worm-like aliens that work for MIB.
  • Sérgio Mallandro as himself

Our Thoughts

While fun for the whole family, there was nothing here exceptional or inspiring. That said, it was good clean family fun that won’t freak out the younger kids, and not so cheesy that older kids and teens will get bored. It is Summer. Enjoy the movies. MIB: International is entertaining and safe for all. 4 stars – MR

 

Find MIB: International and see the new trailer here:


We Review #Godzilla: King of the Monsters “In this film, Godzilla plays the Green New Deal. Don’t waste your money.” – MR

Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019 film)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Godzilla: King of the Monsters
Godzilla – King of the Monsters (2019) poster.png

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Michael Dougherty
Produced by
Screenplay by
  • Michael Dougherty
  • Zach Shields
Story by
Based on GodzillaKing GhidorahMothraRodan
by Toho
Starring
Music by Bear McCreary
Cinematography Lawrence Sher
Edited by
Production
company
Distributed by
Release date
  • May 13, 2019 (Beijing)
  • May 31, 2019 (United States)
Running time
132 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $170–200 million[2][3]

Godzilla: King of the Monsters is a 2019 American monster film directed and co-written by Michael Dougherty. A sequel to Godzilla (2014), it is the 35th film in the Godzilla franchise, the third film in Legendary‘s MonsterVerse, and the third Godzilla film to be completely produced by a Hollywood studio.[Note 1] The film stars Kyle ChandlerVera FarmigaMillie Bobby BrownBradley WhitfordSally HawkinsCharles DanceThomas MiddleditchAisha HindsO’Shea Jackson Jr.David StrathairnKen Watanabe, and Zhang Ziyi. It is dedicated to executive producer Yoshimitsu Banno and original Godzilla suit performer Haruo Nakajima, who both died in 2017. In the film, humans must rely on Godzilla to defeat King Ghidorah and other Titans who have awakened and are causing destruction around the world.

The sequel was green-lit during the opening weekend of Godzilla, with original director Gareth Edwards expected to return. After Edwards left the project in May 2016, Dougherty, who had been hired in October 2016 to re-write the script with Zach Shields, was announced as the director in January 2017. Principal photography began in June 2017 in AtlantaGeorgia and wrapped in September 2017.

Godzilla: King of the Monsters is scheduled to be theatrically released in the United States on May 31, 2019. It received mixed reviews from critics, with praise for the visual effects, musical score, and action sequences but criticism aimed at the underdeveloped human characters and thin storyline.[5] A sequel, Godzilla vs. Kong, is scheduled to be released on March 13, 2020.

Plot

Paleobiologist Emma Russell works for crypto-zoological organization Monarch to track down and study Titans, giant God-like monsters that once dominated the Earth. She and her daughter Madison witness the birth of a giant larva dubbed Mothra. Emma calms Mothra down through her device, the “Orca”, which is capable of emitting frequencies that only Titans can hear. Mothra becomes docile, until an organization of eco-terrorists, led by Alan Jonah, attack and kidnap both Emma and Madison. Mothra manages to escape and cocoon itself underneath a waterfall.

Monarch scientists and soldiers led by doctors Ishirō Serizawa and Vivienne Graham approach Mark, Emma’s ex-husband, to track down Emma and Madison. They follow Godzilla to Antarctica and realize Jonah intends to free a Titan encased in ice called “Monster Zero”. Jonah’s team ambushes the Monarch soldiers and Mark is unable to rescue Emma and Madison. Emma frees and awakens Monster Zero herself. The Titan begins rampaging until Godzilla emerges and the two engage in a fight that ends with Monster Zero flying away after killing Graham.

Monarch finds out that Jonah’s next target is Mexico when they are contacted by Emma, revealing her involvement with Jonah all along after being fueled to finish her research after the death of her son, Andrew, during the 2014 attack on San Francisco.[N 1]Before the evacuation is complete, Jonah orders Emma to wake up Rodan. Monarch’s jets lure Rodan to fight the approaching Monster Zero, who defeats Rodan. Godzilla emerges from the ocean and engages Monster Zero, tearing off one of its heads. In the midst of the battle, the military launches a missile known as the “Oxygen Destroyer” towards them, seemingly killing Godzilla, who sinks into the ocean. Monster Zero survives and regenerates a new head. Rodan becomes submissive to its rule as Monster Zero awakens all the dormant Titans.

Through mythological texts, Dr. Ilene Chen reveals that Monster Zero is Ghidorah, an ancient alien who serves as Godzilla’s primary rival for apex predator. Mothra emerges from her cocoon and flies to the Bermuda facility in the ocean where it is able to communicate with Godzilla, who had survived the detonation and is recuperating in a chamber inside an ancient underwater city. Monarch uses the communication frequency to locate the pair. There, Mark and a Monarch team board a submarine to revive Godzilla, as they realize the natural process could take years. They decide to detonate a nuclear weapon, allowing Godzilla to feed on the radiation, but due to earlier damages the submarine suffered from a vortex, the weapon system is offline. Serizawa volunteers and sacrifices himself to manually detonate the weapon, which revives Godzilla.

In Boston, Emma realizes that the destruction Ghidorah and the other Titans will bring is far worse than what humans could inflict, but Jonah ignores her pleas to turn back. Madison overhears this and steals the Orca. In Fenway Park, Madison broadcasts a frequency that attracts all the Titans to its location. Ghidorah arrives in Boston and attempts to destroy the Orca, with Godzilla appearing with Monarch’s assistance to engage it. Mark leads a Monarch team to rescue Madison and escape the city before Godzilla overloads and emits a thermonuclear explosion. Mothra and Rodan arrive and fight each other while Godzilla battles Ghidorah. Mothra defeats Rodan but is disintegrated by Ghidorah. Her essence descends onto Godzilla.

Mark, Emma, and Madison are reunited and attempt to restart the damaged Orca to lure Ghidorah away from an injured Godzilla. As they are evacuated, Emma drives away with the Orca to continue luring Ghidorah so Mark and Madison can escape, sacrificing herself in the process. Godzilla recovers, now glowing red, and unleashes thermonuclear blasts, bombarding Ghidorah with atomic pulses that burns it away. Rodan and the other Titans then converge on Godzilla, and bow to him.

During the credits, it is revealed that Monarch has divulged their information on the Titans to the public. News clippings indicate Mothra regenerating in a cocoon, Titans beginning to converge on Skull Island, and ancient paintings displaying Godzilla battling Kong. In a post-credit scene, a fisherman reveals one of Ghidorah’s decapitated heads to Jonah, who purchases it.

Cast

  • Kyle Chandler as Dr. Mark Russell:
    Emma’s ex-husband, Madison’s father, an animal behavior and communication specialist who formerly worked for Monarch, and co-inventor of “the Orca”, a machine that enables communication with the Titans but can also “potentially control them using their bioacoustics on a sonar level.”[6]. After suffering a loss, Mark has an unfavorable opinion of the Titans, Godzilla in particular. Despite this, he joins a rescue mission along with Dr. Serizawa and Dr. Graham to save Emma and Madison from nefarious forces.[7][8] Chandler spoke of the film’s themes being about “healing the planet”.[9]
  • Vera Farmiga as Dr. Emma Russell:
    Mark’s ex-wife, Madison’s mother, a paleobiologist working for Monarch with a history of environmental activism, and co-inventor of the Orca. Unlike Mark, Emma believes that humans and Titans can co-exist peacefully.[10] She and Madison are kidnapped by a mysterious organization interested in her technology, with their own plans for the creatures.[7] Farmiga has described her character as being a “DJ for the monsters”, stating, “She has figured out a way to communicate with the creatures…” She also described the film being about “saving the environment.”[6] Farmiga noted that while the previous film focused on a father/son relationship, King of the Monsters focuses on a mother/daughter relationship. Due to this, Farmiga believes the film may pass the Bechdel test.[11]
  • Millie Bobby Brown as Madison Russell:
    Emma and Mark’s 12-year-old daughter. Like her parents, Madison is academically gifted in science but she’d rather live a normal life. She has a distant relationship with her father since her parents divorced but she remains in contact with him. She is kidnapped alongside her mother.[7][12] Lexi Rabe plays a young Madison under her credited name of “Alexandra Rachael Rabe.”
  • Bradley Whitford as Dr. Rick Stanton:
    A crypto-sonographer working for Monarch. Dougherty verified that Dr. Stanton is loosely modeled after Rick Sanchez from Rick and Morty. Dougherty had the character “drink a lot” to keep the character in line with the spirit of Rick Sanchez.[9]
  • Sally Hawkins as Dr. Vivienne Graham:
    paleozoologist working for Monarch as Serizawa’s right-hand woman. Hawkins reprises her role from Godzilla (2014).
  • Charles Dance as Colonel Alan Jonah:
    A former British Army colonel and MI-6 agent who defected after becoming disillusioned by humanity during his time in the service. Obsessed with “leveling the global playing field” and restoring the natural order, he became the mercenary leader of an anarchist eco-terrorist group funded through the trafficking of Titan DNA. In 2005, he was jailed in a Pakistani prison after encountering Monarch agents when attempting to breach the walls of an underground MUTO dig site with a band of accomplice mercenaries.[13] After previously stalking Emma and attempting to raid some of her labs around the world, he takes her and Madison hostage to gain control of the Orca and further his agenda.[9][14] Dougherty described Jonah as a mysterious character with conflicting ideas about the Titans’ role in the world, believing that mankind has damaged the planet and bringing back the Titans will potentially set things right.[15]
  • Thomas Middleditch as Dr. Sam Coleman:
    Monarch’s Director of Technology, leader on the development of the Monarch Sciences network, and communications liaison with the U.S. government.[16]
  • Aisha Hinds as Colonel Diane Foster:
    A decorated colonel who formerly served as an instructor in the 75th U.S. Army Ranger Regiment and is now the leader of the G-Team, the special military forces group run by Monarch specializing in battles involving Titans.
  • O’Shea Jackson Jr. as Jackson Barnes:
    chief warrant officer who is a member of the G-Team.
  • David Strathairn as Admiral William Stenz:
    An Admiral in the 7th Fleet of the United States Navy. He is the commander of the U.S. Navy task force and was previously in charge of tracking down the MUTOs. Strathairn reprises his role from Godzilla (2014).
  • Ken Watanabe as Dr. Ishirō Serizawa:
    A high-ranking scientist working for Monarch. His father Eiji Serizawa was one of Monarch’s founding fathers, so he’s seen by many as the agency’s de facto leader. Watanabe reprises his role from Godzilla (2014). Watanabe noted the film’s themes, stating, “In the 21st century we need to do think about natural disasters. This creature is symbolic of that natural disaster. We cannot control them, but we must live on this planet.”[17]
  • Zhang Ziyi as Dr. Ilene Chen and Dr. Ling Chen:
    mythologist working for Monarch, specializing in deciphering the mythological backgrounds of the Titans in connection with tales and legends throughout history.[18] With her twin sister Dr. Ling, Ilene is a third generation Monarch operative in her family, having joined the agency like their grandmother and mother before them.

Joe Morton appears as an older Dr. Houston Brooks, a character that originally appeared in Kong: Skull Island and was previously portrayed by Corey Hawkins. Additionally, CCH Pounder portrays Senator Williams, Anthony Ramos portrays Staff Sergeant Anthony Martinez, Elizabeth Ludlow portrays First LieutenantLauren Griffin, and Jonathan Howard portrays Asher Jonah, while Randy Havens portrays Dr. Tim Mancini. Tyler Crumley portrays Mark and Emma’s son Andrew who was killed during Godzilla’s fight with the MUTOs in San Francisco. Kevin Shinick cameos as a weatherman. Through motion captureT.J. Stormreprises his role as Godzilla,[19] while Jason Liles, Alan Maxson, and Richard Dorton portray the heads of King Ghidorah. Liles also portrays Rodan via mo-cap.[20] Godzilla, Rodan, Mothra, and King Ghidorah were credited as themselves.

Production

Production credits[21][22]

  • Michael Dougherty – director, co-writer
  • Zach Shields – co-writer, executive producer
  • Barry H. Waldman – executive producer
  • Dan Lin – executive producer
  • Roy Lee – executive producer
  • Yoshimitsu Banno – executive producer (posthumous)
  • Kenji Okuhira – executive producer

Our Thoughts

Godzilla has always represented the terror of the deep, and the idea that this destructive creature feeds on the radiation left by US bombs in Japan helped the creature grow dear in the hearts of original fans.  In this movie, they turn politico, and make it into an eco-awareness flick I like Godzilla, and I like him in this movie, but I go to movies like this to get away from reality. Not be beaten with it. I didn’t like the acting, the plot, the story, or the directing. The special effects are very cool and tight, if a little different than, say, Jurassic Park, or Starwars. If you like this franchise, see it. Otherwise, save your money. This one will have an extended cable movie channel run, I’m sure. – 2 stars is a gift. – MR

Find Godzilla: Kind of the Monsters and see the new trailer, here.


We Review: #JohnWick Ch.3 #Parabellum “An entertaining series, but just more of the same from part 1 and 2. 3.5 stars” – MR

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  
John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum
John Wick Chapter 3 Parabellum.png

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Chad Stahelski
Produced by
Screenplay by
Story by Derek Kolstad
Based on Characters
by Derek Kolstad
Starring
Music by
Cinematography Dan Laustsen
Edited by Evan Schiff
Production
company
Distributed by Lionsgate
Release date
  • May 9, 2019 (Brooklyn)
  • May 17, 2019 (United States)
Running time
131 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $75 million[2][3]
Box office $187.7 million[4]

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (also known as John Wick: Chapter 3 or simply John Wick 3) is a 2019 American neo-noir action thriller film starring Keanu Reeves as the titular character. It is the third installment in the John Wick film series, following John Wick (2014) and John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017). The film is directed by Chad Stahelski[5] and written by Derek Kolstad, Shay Hatten, Chris Collins, and Marc Abrams, based on a story by Kolstad. It also stars Halle BerryLaurence FishburneMark DacascosAsia Kate DillonLance ReddickAnjelica Huston, and Ian McShane. In the film, ex-hitman John Wick finds himself on the run from legions of assassins after a $14 million contract is put on his head.

The first film was always meant to begin a series, and a third installment was announced in June 2017. Much of the returning cast and crew was confirmed in February 2018, with new members joining that May. Filming began that month and lasted through November, taking place in New York CityMontreal, and Morocco.

John Wick: Chapter 3 was theatrically released in the United States on May 17, 2019, by Summit Entertainment. It has grossed $187 million worldwide, surpassing the entire gross of the second film in just 10 days, and received positive reviews from critics, with praise for the fight choreography, visual style, and Reeves’ performance.

Plot

Less than an hour after the conclusion of the previous film, former hitman John Wick is now a marked man and on the run in Manhattan. After the unsanctioned killing of crime lord and new member of the High Table Santino D’Antonio in the New York City Continental, John is declared “excommunicado” by his handlers at the High Table and placed under a $14 million bounty. On the run from assassins, John reaches the New York Public Libraryand recovers a crucifix necklace and a “marker” medallion from a secret cache in a book. He fights his way through numerous assassins populating New York City until he reaches The Director, a woman from his past, who accepts the crucifix as a “ticket” for safe passage to CasablancaMorocco. The Director also brands Wick to signify that he has used up all his favors with her.

Meanwhile, an adjudicator with the High Table meets with Winston, the manager of the New York City Continental, and the Bowery King, the leader of a network of vagrant assassins. The adjudicator admonishes both for helping John Wick kill Santino D’Antonio, and both are given seven days to give up their offices or face serious consequences.

In Casablanca, John meets Sofia, a former friend and the manager of the Casablanca Continental. He presents his marker and asks Sofia to honor it by directing him to The Elder, a high-ranking member of the High Table, so that he can ask to have his bounty waived. Sofia takes him to an assassin named Berrada, who tells John that he may find the Elder by wandering through the desert until he cannot walk any longer. In exchange for this information, he asks for one of Sofia’s dogs; when Sofia refuses, he shoots the dog. In a bout of rage, Sofia shoots Berrada, and the duo fight their way out of the kasbah and flee into the desert.

Having fulfilled her marker, Sofia leaves John in the desert. He roams until he collapses from exhaustion but is found by The Elder’s men. John explains his actions, saying he is desperate to live on to “earn” the memory of the love he once had with his wife. The Elder agrees to forgive John but only if he assassinates Winston and continues to work for the High Table until his death. To show his commitment, John severs his ring finger and gives his wedding ring to The Elder.

Meanwhile, the adjudicator recruits the assassin Zero and his “students” to enforce the will of the High Table. With Zero’s help, the adjudicator accosts the Director and the Bowery King. As penance, both are maimed, the Bowery King almost fatally. John arrives back in New York City and is pursued by Zero’s men, but he escapes to the Continental and takes sanctuary. He meets with Winston, who encourages John not to die as a killer but as a man who loved and was loved by his wife.

Then the adjudicator arrives…

Our Thoughts

Though my wife says this is the best of the John Wick films, I disagree. From start to finish there was absolutely nothing surprising here. If you have seen part 1 or 2, you know exactly what to expect. There is not enough new, or intriguing plot to give it a higher rating. JW is great movie night fun, and an entertaining series, but part 3 is just more of the same from part 1 and 2.   3.5 stars – MR

Find John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum and see the new trailer here.


We Review #Avengers: #Endgame “They saved the best for last! 5 Stars” – MR

Avengers: Endgame

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Avengers: Endgame
Avengers Endgame poster.jpg

Theatrical release poster
Directed by
  • Anthony Russo
  • Joe Russo
Produced by Kevin Feige
Screenplay by
  • Christopher Markus
  • Stephen McFeely
Based on
Starring
Music by Alan Silvestri
Cinematography Trent Opaloch
Edited by
Production
company
Distributed by Walt Disney Studios
Motion Pictures
Release date
Running time
181 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $350–400 million[2]
Box office $305 million[3]

Avengers: Endgame is a 2019 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics superhero team the Avengers, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is the sequel to 2012’s The Avengers, 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron and 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War, and the 22nd film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film is directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely and features an ensemble cast including Robert Downey Jr.Chris EvansMark RuffaloChris HemsworthScarlett JohanssonJeremy RennerDon CheadlePaul RuddBrie LarsonKaren GillanDanai GuriraBradley Cooper, and Josh Brolin. In the film, the surviving members of the Avengers and their allies work to reverse the damage caused by Thanos in Infinity War.

The film was announced in October 2014 as Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2. The Russo brothers came on board to direct in April 2015, and by May, Markus and McFeely signed on to script the film. In July 2016, Marvel removed the title, referring to it simply as Untitled Avengers film. Filming began in August 2017 at Pinewood Atlanta Studios in Fayette County, Georgia, shooting back-to-back with Infinity War, and ended in January 2018. Additional filming took place in the Metro and Downtown Atlanta areas and New York. The official title was revealed in December 2018.

Avengers: Endgame was widely anticipated, and Disney backed the film with extensive marketing campaigns. It premiered in Los Angeles on April 22, 2019, and was theatrically released in the United States on April 26, 2019, in IMAX and 3D. The film received praise for its direction, acting, entertainment value and emotional weight, with critics lauding its culmination of the 22-film story. It also broke numerous box office records, and has grossed $305 million worldwide.

Plot

**SPOILERS** ALERT ** SPOILERS **

Three weeks after Thanos uses the Infinity Stones to eliminate half of all life across the Universe,[N 1] Carol Danvers rescues Nebula and Tony Stark from deep space and returns them to Earth. They rejoin the remaining AvengersNatasha RomanoffBruce BannerSteve RogersRocketThor, and James Rhodes. The team track Thanos to an uninhabited planet he has fled to. Thanos reveals he destroyed the Infinity Stones to prevent the culling from being reversed and is decapitated by Thor.

Five years later, Scott Lang escapes the quantum realm[N 2] and finds Romanoff and Rogers at the Avengers’ compound. He suggests traveling back in time via the quantum realm to thwart Thanos in the past. The trio turns to Stark to develop a time machine for them; Stark, now raising a young daughter, only agrees after reflecting on the loss of Peter Parker. Stark assists Banner, who has learned to become the Hulk without losing his intelligence, in completing the project. Romanoff recruits Clint Barton, who has become a vigilante after his family was disintegrated. Banner and Rocket find Thor in Norway where he has become a drunken recluse.

The Avengers split into groups to retrieve the Infinity Stones from the past. Banner, Lang, Rogers, and Stark travel to New York City in 2012.[N 3] Banner visits the Sanctum Sanctorum and convinces the Ancient One to give him the Time Stone, promising to return it afterwards to prevent the Universe from breaking down. Meanwhile, Rogers manages to steal the Mind Stone, but Lang and Stark’s attempt to steal the Space Stone fails and Loki escapes with it. Rogers and Stark use the last of their size-altering Pym Particles to travel to S.H.I.E.L.D.‘s secret base under Camp Lehigh in 1970. They steal the Space Stone and some vials of Pym Particles to return to the present.

Rocket and Thor travel to Asgard in 2013 to retrieve the Reality Stone from Jane Foster,[N 4] where Thor obtains his former hammer, Mjolnir. Barton and Romanoff travel to Vormir in 2014 and learn from the Soul Stone’s keeper, the Red Skull, that it can only be acquired by sacrificing someone they love. After a fight between the pair, Romanoff sacrifices herself. On Morag, in the same year, Nebula and Rhodes steal the Power Stone before Peter Quill can.[N 5] Rhodes returns to the present with the Stone, but Nebula is left behind when her cybernetic implants overload when her mind connects to her past self. Thanos uses this connection to access future-Nebula’s memories and thereby learns of his future fate and the Avengers’ plans. He captures future-Nebula and sends past-Nebula forward to the present as a spy.

 

Cast

Our Thoughts

I loved it. This was a great ending to an epic collection of films. While a tad too political for my taste, the finale delivers a little something for everyone, including romance, more action than you can imagine, and tears. There were lots of tears around me in the theater, but I won’t say why.  Marvel definitely saved the best for last. 5 stars and highly recommended. – MR

 

Find Avengers: Endgame and see the new trailer here.


We Review: #CaptainMarvel “Nothing new here. Not bad, but not awesome. 3 Stars.” – MR

Captain Marvel

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel poster.jpg

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Anna Boden
Ryan Fleck
Produced by Kevin Feige
Screenplay by
Story by
Based on
Starring
Music by Pinar Toprak
Cinematography Ben Davis
Edited by
Production
company
Distributed by Walt Disney Studios
Motion Pictures
Release date
  • February 27, 2019(London)
  • March 8, 2019 (United States)
Running time
124 minutes[1]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $152–175 million[2][3]
Box office $994.3 million[4]

Captain Marvel is a 2019 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics character Carol Danvers. Produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, it is the twenty-first film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film is written and directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, with Geneva Robertson-Dworet also contributing to the screenplay. Brie Larson stars as Danvers, alongside Samuel L. JacksonBen MendelsohnDjimon HounsouLee PaceLashana LynchGemma ChanAnnette BeningClark Gregg, and Jude Law. Set in 1995, the story follows Danvers as she becomes Captain Marvel after Earth is caught in the center of a galactic conflict between two alien civilizations.

Development of the film began as early as May 2013, and was officially announced in October 2014, making it Marvel Studios’ first female-led superhero film. Nicole Perlman and Meg LeFauve were hired as a writing team the following April after submitting separate takes on the character. The story borrows elements from Roy Thomas‘s 1971 “Kree–Skrull War” comic book storyline. Larson was announced as Danvers at the 2016 San Diego Comic-Con, with Boden and Fleck brought on board to direct in April 2017. Robertson-Dworet soon took over scripting duties, with the remainder of the cast added by the start of filming. Location shooting began in January 2018, with principal photography beginning that March in California before concluding in July 2018 in Louisiana. Jackson and Gregg—who, among others, reprise their roles from previous MCU films—were digitally de-aged in post-production to reflect the film’s 1990s setting.

Captain Marvel premiered in London on February 27, 2019, and was theatrically released in the United States on March 8, 2019, in IMAX and 3D. The film has grossed over $994 million worldwide, making it the highest-grossing film of 2019 and the 11th highest-grossing superhero film of all time. Critics described it as “entertaining”, “enjoyable”, and “savvy”, and praised the performances of Larson, Jackson, and Mendelsohn.

Plot (–SPOILERS–)

In 1995, on the Kree Empire’s capital planet of Hala, Starforce member Vers suffers from amnesia and recurring nightmares involving an older woman. Yon-Rogg, her mentor and commander, trains her to control her abilities while the Supreme Intelligence, the artificial intelligence that rules the Kree, urges her to keep her emotions in check.

During a mission to rescue an undercover operative infiltrating a group of Skrulls, alien shapeshifters with whom the Kree are at war, Skrull commander Talos captures Vers, subjects her to a memory probe, and heads to Earth. Vers escapes and crashlands in Los Angeles. Her presence attracts S.H.I.E.L.D. agents Nick Fury and Phil Coulson, whose investigation is interrupted by a Skrull attack. In the ensuing chase, Vers recovers a crystal containing her extracted memories while Fury kills a Skrull impersonating Coulson. Talos, disguised as S.H.I.E.L.D. director Keller, orders Fury to work with Vers and keep tabs on her.

Using her extracted memories, Vers and Fury go to the Project Pegasus installation at a U.S. Air Force base, where they discover Vers was a pilot presumed to have died in 1989 while testing an experimental jet engine designed by Dr. Wendy Lawson, whom Vers recognizes as the woman from her nightmares. A S.H.I.E.L.D. team led by Talos disguised as Keller tries to capture them, but they escape in a cargo jet with Lawson’s stowaway cat Goose. They fly to Louisiana to meet former pilot Maria Rambeau, the last person to see Vers and Lawson alive.

Rambeau and her daughter Monica tell Vers, who was once close to them, that her real name is Carol Danvers. Talos arrives and reveals the Skrulls are refugees searching for a new home and Lawson was Mar-Vell, a renegade Kree scientist helping them. Talos plays a recovered recording from Lawson’s jet, prompting Danvers to remember the crash: Lawson attempted to destroy the engine’s energy-core to keep it from the Kree, but was killed by Yon-Rogg before she could. Destroying the engine herself, Danvers absorbed the energy from the ensuing explosion, giving her powers but losing her memory.

Danvers, Talos, Fury, and Rambeau locate Lawson’s cloaked laboratory orbiting Earth, where Lawson hid several Skrulls, including Talos’s family, and the Tesseract, the power source of the energy-core. There, Danvers is captured by Starforce and interfaces with the Supreme Intelligence. During their conversation, Danvers removes the Kree implant that was suppressing her powers, allowing her to reach her full potential. In the subsequent battle, Fury retrieves Goose, who is revealed to be an alien Flerken. Goose swallows the Tesseract before blinding Fury’s left eye. Danvers destroys a Kree bomber, forcing Kree officer Ronan the Accuser and his squadron to retreat, before overpowering Yon-Rogg on Earth and sending him back to Hala with a warning to the Supreme Intelligence.

Danvers departs to help the Skrulls find a new homeworld, leaving Fury a modified pager to contact her in an emergency. Meanwhile, Fury drafts an initiative to locate heroes like Danvers, naming it after her Air Force call sign, “Avenger.”

Our Thoughts

Captain Marvel’s glowing hands power is getting old. The bad guys in Iron Man II had it, and the kid in Deadpool 2. Probably at least 3 X-men, as well.  I liked the Fury backstory, and how all of this ties to Guardians of the Galaxy, and Avengers, but COME ON MAN! Disney’s quest to make everyone feel the same, and push politics, is ruining movies.

I’ll still give it 3 stars, and I understand they are trying to give little girls a new heroine. Well, if that is the case, make them one. In the comic world Captain Marvel was just a fill story to help tie the world together. I suppose with Endgame coming up, they had to fill the gaps. It isn’t awesome, but it isn’t bad. See it before you see Avengers: Endgame (review to come Friday 4/26 in the evening) I was disappointed, more in Disney, than in the movie. 3 stars. – MR

Find Captain Marvel and see the new trailer here.


We Review #Alita: Battle Angel “One word: Badass!” – MR

Alita: Battle Angel

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Alita: Battle Angel
Alita Battle Angel (2019 poster).png

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Robert Rodriguez
Produced by
Screenplay by
Based on Gunnm
by Yukito Kishiro
Starring
Music by Tom Holkenborg
Cinematography Bill Pope[1]
Edited by Stephen E. Rivkin
Production
company
Distributed by 20th Century Fox[2]
Release date
Running time
122 minutes[4]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $170 million[5][6]
Box office $35.6 million[5]

Alita: Battle Angel is a 2019 American cyberpunk action film based on Yukito Kishiro‘s manga series Gunnm, also known as Battle Angel Alita. It was directed by Robert Rodriguez, written by James Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis, and produced by Cameron and Jon LandauRosa Salazar stars as Alita, a cyborg, with supporting roles portrayed by Christoph WaltzJennifer ConnellyMahershala AliEd SkreinJackie Earle Haley and Keean Johnson.

Originally announced in 2003, production on and release of the film were repeatedly delayed due to Cameron’s work on Avatar and its sequels. After years of languishing in development hell, Rodriguez was announced as the film’s director in April 2016, with Salazar being cast the following month. Principal photography began in Austin, Texas, in October 2016, lasting through February 2017.

Alita: Battle Angel premiered at the Odeon Leicester Square on January 31, 2019, and was released in the United States on February 14, 2019, by 20th Century Fox in Real D 3DDolby Cinema and IMAX 3D formats. The film received mixed reviews from critics, with praise for its visual effects, action sequences and Salazar’s performance, with some calling it one of the better manga adaptations, while criticism was directed at the “muddled” screenplay and the set-up of sequels.[7]

Plot (***SPOILERS***)

In the year 2563, a catastrophic war known as “The Fall” has left the Earth devastated. While scouting the junkyard metropolis of Iron City, cyborg scientist Dr. Dyson Ido discovers a disembodied female cyborg with a fully intact human brain. Ido rebuilds the cyborg, who does not have any recollections of her past, and names her “Alita” after his deceased daughter.

Alita befriends a teenage boy named Hugo, who dreams of moving to the wealthy sky city of Zalem. Hugo introduces her to the competitive sport of Motorball, a battle royale race wherein cyborgs fight to the death.

Alita discovers that Ido is a Hunter-Warrior when she follows him one night and they encounter three cyborg assassins led by Grewishka. When Ido is injured, Alita instinctively attacks the cyborgs, killing two of them while severely damaging Grewishka before he retreats underground. Despite Alita rediscovering her skill in the ancient martial art of “Panzer Kunst”, Ido discourages her from becoming a Hunter-Warrior. The next day, Alita finds and brings home a Berserker body from a downed ship outside the city. Ido refuses to install her in the body, fearing the consequences of her heart’s full compatibility with it.

Fed up with Ido, Alita herself registers as a Hunter-Warrior. One night, she and Hugo enter the Kansas Bar to ask other Hunter-Warriors in helping her take down Grewishka, but they refuse, as Grewishka is not on the wanted list. Suddenly, an upgraded Grewishka storms into the bar and challenges Alita to a rematch, revealing he has been sent by his boss, Nova, to destroy her. Despite her courage and martial arts skills, Alita’s body is sliced up by Grewishka’s bladed fingers before she blinds him with her left arm, and Ido, Hugo, and another Hunter-Warrior force him to retreat. Ido transplants Alita in the Berserker body, which automatically interfaces with her system.

Having fallen in love with Hugo, Alita enters a Motorball tryout race as a means to send Hugo to Zalem. Ido discovers that the other contestants are Hunter-Warriors and wanted cyborgs hired by Vector to kill her. He warns Alita and as the race begins she destroys many of the contestants with her superior skills. Meanwhile, Hugo is being hunted by Zapan after he frames Hugo for murdering a cyborg. Hugo calls Alita for help and she leaves the Motorball race to rescue him. She finds Hugo just as Zapan arrives and reveals to her that Hugo has been attacking cyborgs and stealing their body parts for Vector for use in his Motorball games. Knowing that Alita is in love with Hugo, Zapan mortally wounds him and tells Alita that Hunter-Warrior law dictates that she must either kill Hugo or let Zapan finish him off. Chiren, Ido’s ex-wife, manages to save Hugo by attaching his head to Alita’s heart. Zapan attempts to stop Alita from leaving but she slices part of his face off.

Ido transplants Hugo’s head onto a cyborg body before telling Alita that Hugo’s actions were based upon the false belief that he would be able to eventually buy his way into Zalem. Ido confides that this was only a lie fabricated by Vector, and that citizens of Iron City will never enter Zalem. Alita decides to confront Vector, who has been mind-controlled by Nova, a powerful Zalem scientist. Through Vector, Nova reveals to Alita that Chiren has been harvested for her organs and then orders Grewishka to kill her. Alita battles Grewishka again and kills him before stabbing Vector, telling Nova he made the mistake of underestimating her.

Our Thoughts

Though I have some quips about the whole sexuality of beings with nothing but organic brains, thing… ie: why be a girl (or a boy) if you are just a brain in a robot body. But that aside, the message to youth, that the look of our bodies is not nearly as important as the quality of our minds, rings through in both triumphant and tragic ways.  Having never read the books, or seen the anime, I didn’t know what to expect. I have to say it was awesome. It seems there will be more awesome to come. I will see this one again, and I am glad we saw it in IMAX 3D. 5 shining stars, and Highly Recommended. To sum it up in one word, Alita was Badass! – MR

 

Find Alita: Battle Angel and see the new trailer here.