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IT poster

IT 2017 Movie Review

By LaTaey Lane

IT directed by Andy Muschietti and starring Bill Skarsgard is a remake of the 1990 original film by horror legend Stephen King. IT follows the story of seven middle school kids from a small town called Dairy in Maine as they band together to fight against the adversity of socialism and the horrors of a demon clown named Pennywise. Pennywise wrecks havoc on the town and its inhabitants as he attacks and preys on the children’s deepest more inner fears.

This was a really good horror movie. Bill Skarsgard’s rendition of Tim Curry’s Pennywise was just awesome. He made the character into his own and did the film great justice. There were screams around every corner and the intensity of the film provided that authentic feeling you get as a child watching horror for the first time.

The best thing about the film was Bill Skarsgard and the young lady Sophia Lillis. The other cast members were not as convincing as the original cast of youngsters, and I did not appreciate such a dramatic change in the character’s back stories and personalities. I do feel that the purity and innocence of being a child were taken away from the writing. There was too much foul language, and at times it became overdone and overused. I know kids will be kids, but this was a bit much. The original writing and cast choices were not only perfect but projected Stephen King in the way he was meant to be perceived as a writer. Being brought to the 80’s was a nice addition, but I think the score was worthy enough to be way better. The score did not carry the film and transport movie goers to the time. I still think it was good. I just hope that the casting director makes good choices when choosing the adult cast for Chapter two. I hope that they are well known established actors that will just enhance the film, but the fact that Stephen King had no involvement in the film, that may be unlikely that the adult cast will be well known. I’m looking forward to seeing where they will take the story since the parts of the setting and elements of the creature were already changed.

I give this movie a strong 4 stars for scare tactics!!

Happy Horror Season

L.L.

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Annabelle Creation Poster

Annabelle Creation directed by David F. Sandburg and starring Anthony LaPaglia and Maranda Otto follows the origin story of how the infamous Annabelle doll came to be. This movie blends the classic haunted house story with the classic idea of demonic possession. The parents of a little girl must cope with the loss of their beautiful daughter and in the process open themselves up to a realm of unimaginable darkness. Soon after a displaced orphanage of girls along with a nun and priest set up residency in the home of Mr. and Mrs. Mullins. The girls quickly learn that there are secrets that the Mullins family have locked away within the house. The innocence of a child like presence becomes something evil in such a way that the residents in the house began to fight for their very souls.

I know that many people go into watching these horror movies with a closed mind, claiming that they have seen it all. That maybe true but if you are looking for a good old-fashioned scare filled with hand grabbing, door creeks, floor board sounds, and severed bodies, then this movie is for you.

The acting was average, and special effects were pretty good, but it was the manner in which the Annabelle story was written that drew me in. The writing was done in a way that answered many questions, but it also was related to the original movie, which also tied into the demon nun from the Conjuring, which we will learn more about when The Nun hits theaters in 2018. I’m very invested in this franchise and I hope that people are willing to give it a chance.

Overall this movie was very enjoyable with lots of scares around every corner. This is a great movie to kick off the horror movie season.

I gave this movie 4 stars.

L.L.

Check out the trailer below.

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Transformers Knight

Transformers: The Last Knight, directed by Michael Bay and starring Mark Wahlberg, takes you back in time to the story of King Arthur, Merlin and the knights of the round table. This element of the story was so exciting and had me thinking about the Arthurian Legend. The story delves deep into the history of how humans and the extraterrestrials began their alliance and revealed more history between the war among the Autobots and the Decepticons. The battle between Good and Evil is intense and continuous throughout the film. I’ve read and heard some of the reviews concerning this movie, which was negative, and it seems that this film grossed the least amount money out of the franchise. I’m not sure why this is because honestly, this was a great movie. The storytelling process was very interesting; the writing was well done. I felt as if I was brought into the story and experienced the journey along with the characters. Mark Wahlberg didn’t disappoint but some of the other new characters needed more developing like Isabella and Jimmy, but I think that they could have been better portrayed by other actors. I felt as though their acting styles were forced. Thet both tried too hard and during some scenes, I thought that their characters were not needed. Sir Edmund Burton played by Anthony Hopkins was a great addition to the cast and served as a guardian and historical counsel in the film. I really enjoyed the battle sequences and the enhanced technology brought the characters to life in such a way that made this whole idea so realistic. You could tell that the writers did some intense research in regards to history, fantasy, and folklore.

The visual effects were amazing, and the overall energy of the film brought a smile to my face as the story unfolded. This movie was so good that I would see it a second time. If you have the time to do a Transformer movie marathon then do it, there are past references throughout and a reference to a future possible battle(so don’t leave during the end credits). Seeing all four movies brings the story together. Despite some casting issues, this is a great film to see. I gave this movie five stars!!

L.L.

Check out the Trailer Below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wonderwoman poster

Wonder Woman directed by Patty Jenkins and starring Gal Gadot and Chris Pine tells the origin story of how Wonder Woman came to be. The fast paced superhero film opened with Diana (Wonder Woman) living as a child within the magical world of the Amazon. Living within a community of strong Amazonian warrior women, Diana is first sheltered by her mother and the others. Her will to fight and be strong resonates within her as her aunt tries to bring out that inner strength. Under the direction of her aunt, she trains to prepare to fight the ultimate enemy until she is ready.

Diana’s world is turned upside down when she meets a mysterious stranger that nearly drowns in the Amazonian waters. Her journey of strength, self-discovery and love follows her as she travels to early 1900’s England.

I really enjoyed watching Wonder Woman, I absolutely loved Gal Gadot in the starring role. I was very impressed with her when I first saw her in the Batman vs Superman film. The time sequences of the Amazonian warriors was very good. I actually wished that the entire film took place in that world. Once she crossed over to the early 1900s, I really didn’t care for that time period, so it was hard for me to get past the setting, but I knew that the director was trying to take us back to a place where we and Bruce Wayne first saw her. The film does a nice job in explaining her origins. Now I am interested in seeing what the future holds for Wonder Woman.

The special effects were infused nicely and didn’t get lost in the film. The character chemistry worked well, but the score wasn’t memorable. The costumes were great and I loved the way Gal looked in the updated version of her costume. I know it will be a hit at New York Comic Con!!!

This is a good movie and you will enjoy the action and excitement that it will bring!!

I gave this movie 4 stars!!

L.L.

Check out the trailer below!!

 

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Guardians of the Gal vo2

Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, directed by James Gunn, and starring Chris Pratt and Zoe Saldana is a continuation of the saga of a group of superhero criminals who have vowed to protect the universe. On their quest to keep order within the cosmos, Star-Lord finds answers to his past and discovers some new found truths about the real person he has become.

Without spoiling it for those who haven’t seen this film yet, I must say that it was well done. The storytelling was done well. I just feel that this movie should have been the first film and the first film the second. It was nice to have questions answered about Star-Lord’s past, instead of waiting after four or five films to have questions answered.

The film had a great tone to it, which the aspects of comedy contributed to, but I did feel as if it was a bit too much comedy. It was one step away from being compared to a stand up comedian’s show.  The cast was great and I love the chemistry that each character displayed. This movie was a lot of fun to watch. There are a few surprises with supporting cast members and memorable marks that others made upon us.

I’m always a big fan of special effects and at this point in the game, the effects have to be spot on. The special effects for Guardians was just that! I really did not enjoy the score of the first film, but it was a lot better in this one. I’m assuming that as time goes on the score will continue to get better as the main character and film evolve together.

Overall this movie was every enjoyable and thrilling to watch. I’m looking forward to the third film.

I gave this movie 5 stars!

L.L.

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Beauty-and-the-Beast-2017-movie-poster

Beauty and the Beast directed by Bill Condon and starring Emma Watson and Dan Stevens was a fairytale masterpiece that brought the classic romantic Disney, animated tale to life in the form of a live action film. Most people know the story of Belle and her adventures to share her uniqueness in a world where being different wasn’t always accepted, but for those who don’t, Belle and her father live in a quaint little French village, as they work together and manage a life without her mother, Belle goes on a quest in search of something more. Not realizing when and how that will come, she finds herself on the edge of a new world as she makes an attempt to save her father after he gets in trouble from a local trip. She soon encounters her father’s capturer and quickly sacrifices herself for the health and safety of her father. Shocked that her father’s capturer is a Beast, she remains strong and not afraid of him. At first Belle and Beast are at odds with each other, but as time passes Belle realizes that the Beast has a loving, caring, and gentle spirit. She comes to the realization that a terrible spell has been cast upon the Beast and all the inhabitants of the castle. She is determined to do all she can to help, but does not realize that love is only thing that can break the spell.

This version of Beauty and the Beast was done is a remarkable way. The cast was superb and visually the movie was just magical. For two hours I was swept away as if I were a character in the story. The special effects were brilliant, and even though I could clearly tell that the Beast was CGI character, he still looked really believable. The emotions and story behind the characters made me feel connected to the adventure. I must applaud the casting director for a job well done especially when it came to infusing cultural diversity into the characters. Several characters were African American and it was nice to see African Americans be included and represented as equals in a fairytale of this magnitude.

Overall, Beauty and the Beast is a must see film. I look forward to adding this movie to my personal collection and no matter what anyone says, adults can enjoy this movie just as much as any child! I gave this movie 5 stars!!

L.L.

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Underworld Blood Wars staring Kate Beckinsale and directed by Anna Foerster is a fast paced vampire fantasy that wraps up the long reigning war between the vampire clan and the Lycans.  Selene finds herself alone and now a hunted outcast within her own community, as she tries to defend herself and protect her hybrid daughter from her enemies. A new Lycan enemy has risen from the shadows, Marius and is in desperate need to find Eve (Selene’s daughter) and use her blood to transform himself into the ultimate powerful Lycan hybrid.  Selene’s ignorance of her whereabouts is deemed helpful but that does not give her a pass to live freely. Instead Marius continues to hunt her down and destroy everything in his path to get what he wants. Selene and her friend David make an attempt to seek refuge in one of last surviving vampire Covens. One that eventually appears to be linked to David and the Coven that Craven led in the first Underworld. Answers to questions of the past are finally revealed and Selene discovers that some members of this Coven are not on her side. Once again betrayed by her own kind, Selene and David head to the Artic to seek help from another ancient tribe of vampires that appear to peaceful seekers and defenders of Selene’s cause.  It is there that she learns that Marius’ part in this play a more sinister role in destroying the life she once had. The final battle begins and Selene finds herself on the brink of the true death.

Underworld Blood Wars was an exciting film to see. The story telling process did the franchise justice. The action sequences were classic Underworld with a few surprises that horror fans will love. The effects were technologically developed in a way that allowed the movie goer to fully appreciate the ideas being presented. The vampire world was very enticing and I must say that the overall look of the characters in full costume was beautiful. The black leather designs were unique to every character and added to the world being presented. It allowed the environment to become a character in itself. My only issue, the movie was over too fast.

I gave this movie 5 stars for a fun whimsical vampire fantasy!!!

L.L.

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