Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Get A Job

Betrayal!!! Betrayal!! Betrayed me! This movie did not deliver Anna Kendrick as much as I expected it to. The second movie this week with a criminally low usage of Anna?? You lied to me Get A Job! They betrayed me, they didn't keep their promise, they tricked me and I don't care anymore. (Oh God I quoted The Room...)

In other news, not a bad movie really. It kinda started off as a giant middle finger to all Millenials, but at the end it got a great message out. Get A Job is a very good comedy movie following the everyday problem of finding a job. It stars Miles Teller and Anna Kendrick as a couple who constantly are on the lookout for the next job, and weird funny stuff occurs. I like how they made a movie about as simple and as mentally breaking as job searching and really make it enjoyable and humorous. Hands down best character is Bryan Cranston, oh yeah Bryan Cranston is in this movie. Bam there you go, just sold this movie. He is great in this! Makes me laugh my ass off constantly. The comedy is really good, made me laugh quite a bit so can't say it's a horrible comedy. Honestly, I was really expecting to talk a lot more about this movie, yes it did a good job telling the story, with funny characters, and a good cynical viewpoint of modern generations, but beyond that I got...nothing. Good movie, but could only really recommend it if it's a rainy day and you just don't have much else to watch at the time. I don't know, maybe you will see more in this than I did, I knew a person who said the best movie they ever saw was White Chicks, so you know, make of it what you will. I'm gonna watch Mr. Right and quench my serious Anna Kendrick jones. Have fun everybody!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Up In The Air

You know, I've been hearing about this movie for a little while. Oh, Up In The Air it's such a great movie! Up In The Air it's so celebrated and loved and enjoyed. And it's true.

Up In The Air is one of the best movies I have ever seen in my entire life. The plot follows a man whose life is lived through airports, he constantly travels around the country with the sole purpose of firing people. That is his job, to end people's jobs, nothing more. We follow him and we meet a lovely woman who he forms a quick and lovely relationship with, we also see him gain a new friend in the form of someone who is controlling a force that could end his life as he knows it. She takes the digital approach to terminating jobs instead of in person, putting his life job in jeopardy. From there many things happen, both good and bad, as in life culminating in a somber, bitter sweet ending. The main thing about this movie that I love is how it can break down the average working human being. It's very detached from emotion, and yet like at the same time embraces the center of emotion. It brings up the points of life, love, happiness, being alone, why do people react the way they do, all done in a truly amazing and beautiful way. It stars George Clooney as our main character, who is not even acting in my opinion he really is just being this character. It's unreal how great he is. Vera Farmiga is his love interest, she is wonderful as always and I love to see her in fun roles. Anna Kendrick is actually very un-Anna Kendrick, she starts off sort of uptight and for lack of a better word neurotic but halfway through the movie we get the Anna Kendrick that I know, love, and adore but sadly it doesn't last for long. The music is mellow, and very slow paced and it hit me hard near the end of this movie, this is the kind of music I want to hear while I look at a city from the window of a plane. I really must say that this movie was important for me to watch. I know if I watched this movie 2 or 3 years ago, hell even a year ago I would not look at it the way I do now. I watched it at just the right time in my life and sort of, you know, my current emotional state and my thoughts toward the world, and the people that live in it. This movie brings up the point which really only reaffirms the fact that this is what I want to do for the rest of my life. This is what makes me happy, I love to talk about movies, and this movie makes the point of to follow your dreams and to do something that makes you happy. Whether it's to spend time with the people that you know and love, or to do the job that you want to do. To not settle for anything lesser. It brings up that people shouldn't be alone, you should always spend time with people that you like and enjoy being with, never be alone. Uh....Star Wars is my favorite movie of all time, nothing is really going to change that. And yet, it is not a movie that literally changed my life. This movie did. It made me look at the world I live in and the people that surround me very differently. Very few movies have made such an achievement, but what I have noticed is that they all deal with relationships, real genuine human interaction. Up In The Air is a movie about not spending your life alone, to follow your dreams, to be happy with what you are doing in your life, and to be with people you care about. Her with Joaquin Phoenix and Scarlett Johannson was about building a meaningful and true relationship, about love in a true sense, in the most human-y human way possible. Lost In Translation, the movie I can never stop praising, and is in fact very similar to this movie, was finding a person that gives you this sort of solace in life, someone you love to be with and want to always be around, this beautiful special bond that two people can form with one another. It's these movies that change my life perspective in many ways, but mostly the way I look, treat, and talk to people. If there was any movies to take from these reviews that I do, to really sit down and watch, it would be these. Most of the time I feel very alone, but when I am with my friends and my family I grow very sort of...appreciative of life. You really can't take living for granted. We are all running clocks, we can't turn back or be put on pause, we all have our time to go. So you better make something really worth of it, so when you, like I, look back on your life you will not say these words, "It was all a waste of time. It was not worth it. It was a mistake.". Live the way you want to live, and the way I want to live is through movies. I'm The Dude, and I want to see you tomorrow.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

.....And Now I Am The Dude In White

I return to you now at the turn of the tide. We have a movie tomorrow and on Tuesday, but also one on Friday and Saturday. Yes, leading right into December. And you know what the sad part is, usually when I take September off I plan out reviews until the end of that year, and into the next year at least into March. But this year....I got nothing. The last review I have planned is December 22nd. After that, a whole lot of nothing. Why? Well mainly just because I have no more movies at the apartment. I have just about reviewed them all. All my other movies are in storage. No joke, I only have 3 DVD cases, one for movies, one for animated TV shows, and one for live action TV shows. That's all the space I can really afford. Now granted, the television shows I have rarely touched upon. Because how do you properly review a TV series? I do it season by season just giving overviews of the whole season, can't give it all away now can I? I honestly think 2017 is going to be the year of the television reviews, and also new movies in theaters are coming back hard man. I am going to try and see new movies at least once a week if not more. I mean, it's a neccesity at this point now man. Sink or swim, and I am choosing to swim. I counted all the releases next year, there are 17 movies I want to see in theaters. It's a miracle if I want to see 4 movies in a year! 17?? Unbelievable. 2017 is going to be one hell of a year! But until then, have a wonderful evening and I shall see you tomorrow. Goodnight everybody!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Holiday Sickness

You know what I love? Being sick close to holidays. You know what I love even more? Not having a clue what to review when I'm not doped up on cold medicine, which is often. I was going to review both The Truman Show, and One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest but I have no clue when I will be feeling healthy again. So I'll try to get those out this week, and if I don't I can at least recommend something to watch on television. A few channels have got some good marathons on, AMC has a John Wayne marathon though I personally liked it better when they played The Godfather trilogy, VH1 has a good selection of 80s movies playing, and ABC Family (I refuse to call it FreeForm) has a decent selection of kids movies to entertain the young ones if you have some over, all of which going on Thanksgiving day so take your pick and have fun. You know Thanksgiving was always one of my favorite holidays, I always got to see my family, enjoy all that food, but I was not one for the ball of foot so most of the time if I wanted to watch something I had no choice but to hang out in my room with other people who wasn't one for sports. That was always fun. Now though...not so much. I always try to make it a worthwhile holiday but it gets harder as time goes by. So for me, I want you to have a great Thanksgiving, do not spend it shopping. Boy, what a joke that is, having a holiday built for giving thanks for what you have and for spending time with people you love followed by a day where commercialism reigns supreme and everyone wants a piece of that cake, rioting over material things when you could be home having pie and coffee for breakfast. Now tell me, which would you prefer?

Friday, November 18, 2016

Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them

Well 15 years after The Sorcerer's Stone hit theaters, we venture once more in to the magical world created by J.K. Rowling. Does it do justice to her works?

The short answer is, yes in a way. The long answer, let's begin. The first thing I have to point out is I have no idea what a movie is about beyond trailers, so I have a sense of surprise when I see the movie, and this movie had a lot going on it other than just an easter egg hunt for magical creatures. The story takes place in 1926 New York City, and I was actually a bit off with the time. I thought it was either going to be the 30s or the 40s, I even narrowed my guess down to a year, 1937 so I was a bit off. It's quite interesting to see the magical world not only in a different era but also a different country. The basic rules of the wizarding community is still there but slightly different, and my God I thought the Ministry Of Magic were massive assholes, this organization set in America was the bane of my existence for this entire movie! I have never had more hatred for a fictional organization in my life. But all it does is make our protagonist's more enjoyable and you can really stand for what they are trying to do. Our hero Newt Scamander is a brilliant zoologist for the wizarding world and is on a quest to obtain a rare magical animal only found in America, after he arrives though several mischievous creatures escape and the hunt is on to capture them all to avoid the revelation that there are witches and wizards walking amongst us. But something more dangerous is happening around them. First of all the scenery is great, both in location and in the creatures. Yes you can tell it is very obvious CGI but it still looks impressive. The magic is familiar and yet new and looks and even feels just right. The casting is perfect in the case of our main hero, played by Eddie Redmayne who I can fully believe is Mr. Scamander and oddly enough he acts well...very Time Lord-ish. He feels like the wizard equivalent of The Doctor, in fact Matt Smith tried out for the role and Eddie looks a lot like Matt both in clothing and physical features. I mean it's just uncanny! He is the real star of the movie to me, nothing else compares. The story kept me interested all the way through, and even had a twist that no one could ever see coming and made my jaw drop to the floor. The creatures are brilliant in design and you do care for them greatly, even though I was very shocked at how few creatures actually escaped. I mean, in the trailer it seems like 10 creatures actually escaped when in reality it added up to about 5 total. Not a bad thing by any true stretch but did turn out to be a bit misleading. Beyond that, I really liked this movie! When it was first announced I just asked why couldn't they leave well enough alone, but obviously the world of Harry Potter is a bit more expansive than the 8 books, now is this movie series good enough to warrant four more sequels? That can only be answered in time my friends. Until next time.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Doctor Strange

Wow. Okay, first Marvel movie I have seen since Iron Man 2. Boy howdy was that different.

Doctor Strange, very good superhero movie based off of a lesser known Marvel character, how does it hold up? Well it's no secret the visuals in this movie are brilliant, with colors, and patterns, and psychedelics creating a truly mind bending experience. Casting was quite good, Benedict Cumberbatch is a no brainer in my head for a hero like Doctor Strange, although he's very Sherlock in places which makes me laugh that much more, Mads Mikkelsen was a treat to watch as always, dare I say those are the main reasons that I wanted to see this movie. It's not a big surprise that I am mainly a DC fan and not a Marvel fan, obviously I have been several years late to this cinematic universe, so I was trying to acclimate myself to this with mostly sound success. I sympathized with Stephen, was interested by the magic, blown away by the visuals, liked the mythos, but sometimes...the comedy just rubbed me the wrong way. Now I get it, Marvel is very lighthearted, it cracks jokes, I get that but there is a difference between comedic relief and shattering the mood. Several times I got thrown off, just by the excess humor during what should be a serious scene. Is that a thing in most Marvel movies nowadays? Cause...we might be having problems with that. I appreciate humor, I laughed several times, but they need to work on balancing humor and drama. I'm not saying it should be completely serious and dark, far from it, just tone it down a bit. Beyond that one little issue, I enjoyed the movie. It's not going to make me a Marvel fanboy, I barely stayed past the credits, I know, blasphemy!! Heretic! Don't care that much! The story was well put together following a very Cumberbatch surgeon (Is that a noun now? That should be a noun.) who following a brutal car crash, has lost the ability to use his hands. He seeks a man who has overcome an impossible medical disability who tells him to search for a temple. He travels there and slowly learns more about everything he knows about life is merely microscopic compared to the innerworkings of the multiverse. He learns spells, fights corrupt magic users, and even throws down with a multi-dimensional conqueror of worlds. It's pretty thrilling. Final sum up, go see this movie if you are interested. I know I was and am quite happy to have seen it, so I say go for it. You never know what you may learn...

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Return Of The Caped Crusaders

Thank God this was a good movie. I don't know if I could have taken another rubbish animated DC movie.

A love letter to the classic 60s Batman television show, Return Of The Caped Crusaders is a well deserved return to the Bright Knight iteration with Adam West and Burt Ward. A loving tribute with admiration and respect, this movie captures the zany, ridiculous, and truly wonderful feel of the campy 60s show with added easter eggs for the die hard Batman fans, our story follows the caped crusaders hot on the trail of the most dastardly group of villains ever to plague Gotham City, the Joker, the Penguin, the Riddler, and Catwoman. An obvious throwback to the 1966 movie, with even more to offer than before. The voice acting is spectacular, obviously always a treat to hear Adam and Burt in the roles that made them forever famous, the look takes a more realistic version of the art style used in The Brave And The Bold tv series, with excellent use of color and even a few bits of the highly acclaimed Batman The Animated Series thrown in. The cast is the true reason to watch this movie, although the movie itself is very good and feels like a long lost episode of the 60s television series, although I have to admit it saddens me to really think of how many fine actors we have lost that were once in the old show, but the replacements do their best to bring justice to such iconic performances and they deserve some respect for that. For a movie that is barely even an hour and twenty minutes long, lots of things happen that feel just right in this vein of Batman lore, from the lavishly ludicrous villains, to the brilliantly ridiculous gadgets, this movie is built for a true fan of the television show which I am. I found it campy and silly when I first viewed the 1966 movie (since it was many years before the television series hit home video) but as it played on I grew a love and admiration for it, and still defend it to this very day. And I am very happy to see another edition to the Adam West Batman legacy.

Tune in next week for more, same time same channel, with one warning: the worst is yet to come!!

Friday, November 11, 2016

Alice Through The Looking Glass

I quite enjoyed this movie. But I must admit I have not read the books in so long, I know it's an adaptation so it differs from the book but for the life of me I can't remember much about Through The Looking Glass, Alice's Adventures In Wonderland I remember much of but the sequel which already most people are not aware of I can't remember hardly a thing. Well now after the longest opening I have ever written, let's continue.

You should see how many notes I've written down, like seriously I have much to discuss in this movie. First thing, the movie takes place a few years after the first with Alice now currently being a ship captain. I am really not kidding about that. She captains a ship, uniform and all, she looks like she just raided Commodore Norrington's uniform from Pirates Of The Carribean and commandered a ship. Ridiculous yes, but pretty awesome. After she returns home she is invited to a party, not unlike that other party in the first one, as she is called to a mirror and is compelled to walk on the other side. Wonderland is here, Ms. Alice. She soon reunites with all her old friends from the first movie and it is a joy to see them again, same actors and all. But all is not well, Hatter is seriously disturbed after reliving the memory of losing his family and asks Alice for help. Side note, Johnny is much more better in this movie. You think he's just going to be weird Johnny Depp in this movie but far from it, there is a lot of sadness in his character and this movie gives great depth to the character through that, accentuated even further by his undying friendship with Alice, it is just so lovely. Alice then pays a visit to Time, played by Sacha Baron Cohen and I know, I know, you think he would be really annoying and miscast in this role but really, he does a very good job. Time himself is not a villain by any means, he's just a man performing his task of keeping time in line, if anything you could argue Alice is the villain in this movie. She steals a device called the chronosphere which keeps all time in balance in Wonderland to try and save Hatter's family. That's the basic plot, but there is much more to discuss. The chronosphere is a time machine but is modeled very much like H.G. Wells' Time Machine and travels across the Sea of Time, which I actually do remember is a part of the book and the Sea is amazing in design. Actually speaking of design, the film is gorgous with warm colors and lovely set design in Wonderland mixed beautifully with Time's palace which is shrouded in darkness with a gothic design, mechanical and cold like a clock itself. Surprisingly the film is not directed by Tim Burton, but produced by him, is it for better or for worse? I leave that up to you, but I really enjoyed the movie as is. Another excellent aspect is it builds upon the world seen in the first movie, you see many more locations and people that you never saw in the first movie, and that is awesome to me! Since the film deals with time travel, it's a bit difficult to not have Doctor Who elements pop into my brain, just how it all plays out works, and the quite frankly lovely message about time near the end is just the cherry on top. Oh my God, and it has the greatest cameo...ever!! I flipped my lid when I saw that friggin' Jim Moriarty from the BBC Sherlock series is the head of a mental institute. I mean is that not perfect casting or what? If you've seen Sherlock you are laughing your ass off right now, and rightfully so. Compared to the first movie, I'd say I enjoy the first more but without a doubt I will buy this movie. I'd love to add it to my collection, and hopefully you enjoy it as much as I did.

And tomorrow to cap off the week, we will time travel ourselves back to 1966 where we will visit two crusaders against crime....

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Star Trek Beyond

Time for some new movies. How does this movie hold up on Star Trek's 50th anniversary? Well....

It did a very good job, I highly enjoyed the movie and felt it was an appropriate celebration of Star Trek. The plot takes place two and a half years after the Enterprise crew encountered Khan, as they explore the deep reaches of space. The ship is brutally attacked, destroying the entire ship and stranding the crew on a hostile alien planet as they desperately try to escape. Good plot with some interesting new characters, but of course the crew is the best part. Nothing much is new in terms of character development, with one exception but we will touch base on that later. The comedy is still there but toned down from previous films, the sets are...unbelievable, these are the best designed sets of the new Star Trek movies with extensive levels and amazing attention to detail, the special effects are still kick ass adding new and yet older ships and some original ideas. And has without a doubt the most ludicrous, most badass fight scene ever near the end! The movie has plenty of nods to past Star Trek movies and television shows, some only the most hardcore Trekkies will spot, I myself only caught a handful. From a ship straight out of Star Trek Enterprise to the poster itself being a throwback to Star Trek The Motion Picture, there is tons to notice. And of course, it is almost impossible to not talk about how we lost two beloved members of the Enterprise, Leonard Nimoy sadly passed away before filming and the movie takes the time to pay respect to the one and only Mr. Spock with a beautiful and heartfelt scene at the end, and we tragically lost Anton Yelchin in a car accident after filming ended, it was a true shock and I am still very sad that he is gone, Star Trek will never be the same without these two wonderful actors. I want to thank all of you who joined me tonight, and as always till next time live long and prosper.

Join me tomorrow as we travel through the looking glass. You are invited.

Friday, November 4, 2016

Godzilla (2014)

Good job Gareth Edwards, you did the seemingly impossible.

The newest American Godzilla movie, why do people not like this one so much? I thought it was pretty damn good all things considered. Could have been much, much worse but it wasn't and that is the important thing. Right from the beginning it catches your attention with a great opening credits scene taking a stock and cliche opening and making it interesting, but we also get Bryan Cranston, being awesome like always (No I haven't seen Breaking Bad yet. Please hold your fire.). He plays a scientist working at a nuclear power plant in Japan, when suddenly the reactor becomes unstable. Cut to 15 years later, and he is on the hunt for answers as to what truly happened that day, accompanied by his son played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson who works in the military as they discover monsters laying dormant. They meet another scientist Dr. Serizawa (Same name as the scientist in the 1954 version) played by Ken Watanabe who informs them that the monsters are in fact from prehistoric times and that if they ever got loose, there is a natural force to combat them, Gojira. The monsters soon awaken and start a trek to repopulate their species which causes the Big G to be called on the scene to deal with them. The film was directed by Gareth Edwards, who makes very visual films and this is no exception. True it is set in modern day but it has such striking color and well done cinematography that it gives the film a bit more visual appeal. I can narrow it down to a single scene, the HALO jump, coupled together with the iconic and haunting music used in 2001: A Space Odyssey, make it one of the most memorable scenes in the entire movie. Now a few people didn't like this movie very much down to one problem, a lack of screen time from certain characters. Now honestly I had no problem with that, even though in this two hour film you only see a grand total of 10 minutes of Godzilla and yeah, you want to see the big guy a lot but isn't that the case with all Godzilla movies? You want to see him almost all the time on screen, I get that, but I loved the mystery around the monsters and how they were revealed throughout the film. You get glimpses of Godzilla throughout the whole movie but it's rare you see a full head to toe shot of him but it really works! It gives you a great sense of just how truly giant he is, I love the design of it very much, looks like the King Of The Monsters equivalent of me actually. The fight scenes are really good, although they tease just a bit, you see them throw down multiple times but not the whole fight until the end. That doesn't bother me a bit, I like bits and pieces before the grand finale and yes it is worth it in my opinion. I can't wait for the sequel which is due in 2019 if memory serves correct, so still awhile to go. But we have plenty more monster films in the future to tide me over until then. Thank you so much for joining me in Japan. Goodnight.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Godzilla 2000 (1999)

Boy that's a paradoxical title isn't it?

The first in the Millenium series, over 16 years old, how is it? Pretty great. The plot isn't spectacular, but what comes out of it is highly entertaining. The Japanese government searches the depths of the ocean to discover a new source of energy, then soon find an alien craft that rises from the depths and is strangely focused on Godzilla. That is one of the major high points for this movie, it has an excellent sense of mystery around the monster, named Orga and you never know what it really looks like or why it is focused on Godzilla until near the end. Orga mutates several times throughout the movie, similar to Shin Gojira and I love the originality with the monster. But then again Toho has always had such genius designs for it's monsters, and this design of Godzilla might actually be my most favorite of all the designs. In fact, the whole movie looks great, the models are so highly detailed they look real, I am floored by the sets in this movie. We get many good shots of Tokyo at night, and the more I thought about it I realized the fact that I have probably seen more movies set in Tokyo than New York City, Japan has always been present in my life since I was real little in some form or another, and will continue to until I die. Japan is in the heart, wherever I go she is with me. And now, time for backstory! In 1994 Toho planned on making the final Godzilla film after 40 long years, killing the King Of The Monsters once and for all. They did just that, giving the rights to TriStar to make future American Godzilla films. They failed. Horribly. To the point where Toho was so outraged they released this movie less than a year later in 1999, titled Godzilla Millenium. Then it got a theatrical release here in the States in 2000, which hasn't been done since Godzilla 1984 and never again until Shin Gojira, but sadly it bombed. Yes this film actually failed, which is why we don't get many Godzilla films here until it gets on home video. It's very sad but very true. But you can never keep the big guy down, he has died at least three times, four if you count the TriStar movie, but Goonies never say die or something, so he always comes back. It was one of the first Godzilla movies I ever saw, I still love it, I think you would enjoy it, but we got one more to go before the week is out. Tune in tomorrow for a GOOD American Godzilla movie.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Godzilla (1984)

Alright time to review Godzilla 1985, even though it was originally released in 1984, made it to America in 1985, and has not been allowed to be released on DVD until September of this year in America. Confused yet? Good, let's move on.

For this particular review, I watched the original Japanese version instead of the American version although either version is still great to watch. Godzilla has returned to Japan after 30 years of dormancy to raise terror and destruction yet again. Grade A entertainment. Time for backstory! Godzilla first appeared in 1954 and appeared in several sequels for 20 years evolving from a destructive allegory for a nuclear bomb to a savior of the Earth, ending the what is known as the Showa era in 1974. Ten years later...he was resurrected as a destructive force, ignoring all other movies except the original in 1984 beginning the Heisei era. And this film truly updates the look with excellent special effects, sophisticated and ambitous models, coupled with new military weapons. Of course since this was made in the mid 80s the Cold War was still heavy in the air, so Russian and American forces suggest to use nuclear weapons against Godzilla. Of course Japan is against nuclear weapons of any sort, Japan never forgets their history and Hiroshima is explicitly mentioned in this movie, Japan is a hero in my eyes for prohibiting any nuclear weapons in real life. The atmosphere has an almost apocalyptic feel to it, with a doomy and epic theme for the King Of The Monsters. Add in some nifty editing and framing, and a decent human story, and you have one of the best Godzilla movies ever made. Top 10 for me easily. Get your hands on it now if you are a fan of the Big G, or if you want a good monster mash.

Tomorrow we look at the beginning of the Millenium era.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

We're Not Done Yet!

Halloween is going overtime here on What The Dude Says! I thought about it for a bit and remember that I said I wouldn't mind doing the monster mash in Tokyo come November? Well that's where we are headed. This week just for the hell of it, and if you didn't get enough monster action, I shall review three Godzilla movies, all from different eras. One from the Heisei series, one from the Millenium series, and the newest american movie. There's a lot more King Of The Monsters coming in the future. The new japanese movie will hit video, we get a sequel to the american 2014 Godzilla, we even get a rematch of King Kong Vs. Godzilla. That's right, I said rematch. Plus it's always fun to talk movies where a guy in a giant rubber lizard suit stomps on a model city. So check it out tomorrow, and Blue Oyster Cult said it best....go go Godzilla!