review

Review: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

I went into Dayman v Nightman: Dawn of the Troll Toll (see video below) with exceedingly low expectations, which is a strategy that has been working well for me lately. I was hoping for the best but expecting the worst (are they gonna drop the bomb on us) and secretly wanted this movie to blow my god damn socks off. It did not, but it was a lot of fun to watch. I invite you now on my journey through BvS:DoJ, let’s start with a trailer that is superior to the real actual trailer in every respect to get everyone in the mood….

Things kick off with this movie chronologically right after Man of Steel (2013) which gave us an excellent take on the origin story of Superman. If you haven’t seen it basically Superman destroys half of Metropolis while facing off against General Zod (a fellow Kyptonian who is a real piece of work). And by “destroys half of Metropolis” I mean they really mess that city up, like, how did Metropolis even recover? And Bruce Wayne happened to be in town to witness all of it.

zod wayne tower

Woopsie!

That was Wayne tower being completely obliterated by the way. So, Superman has just rolled into town unannounced and unknown and been involved in an insane amount of violence and death. Naturally Batman is not into this and the citizens of the country are also concerned which is where BvS begins, things have started off okay!

Enter Lex Luthor CEO of LexCorp. Words cannot express how much I hate Jesse Eisenberg as Luthor, it was frustrating to watch him neurotically mumble his way through this character who is supposed to be utterly terrifying. He sucks. Lex is trying to be the architect of the greatest battle of all time, Batman v Superman and although his plan starts with a lot of good ideas it deteriorates so quickly. Much like the film. As far as evil geniuses go he had a plan and it was a decent plan but it wasn’t diabolical or that clever.

lex.jpg

Lex Luthor lacking any semblance of villain worthy intimidation.

What started as a deep and thoughtful exploration into the resentment Batman and Superman hold for each other quickly spirals into a nonsensical farce with plot developments so weak it hurts. Maybe if Lex wasn’t so terrible it could have been saved? No that’s not it because anyone who has seen this film with their own eyes and witnessed the “Martha” fiasco knows this script was not exactly great material to work with.

I genuinely feel bad for Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill who both do a very good job in this film. Especially after seeing how sad Ben Affleck has been lately (see video below) because the fact the movie misses the mark has nothing to do with them!

Between the completely unnecessary flashbacks to the death of Bruce Wayne’s parents every five seconds and the overload of set ups for the upcoming Justice League films there really isn’t any substance to this script. It jumps from idea to idea as frantically as a small child trying to explain an exciting action sequence in a movie. “And then superman did this and batman did this and oh by the way all this happened ages ago which is important then omg lex luthor was doing something and then OH MY GOD THEN WONDER WOMAN CAME oh and there are all these other heroes but I don’t have time to explain..”

wonder woman

She’s a wonder.

Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, now I had set the bar about as low as it could go, I had buried the bar of hope in the back garden of my mind palace because I love Wonder Woman. Her arrival on the scene was hands down the best part of the movie for me and she pulls out some serious bad-assery in her brief time on screen. I’ll admit I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this Wonder Woman! She’s absolutely nothing like the Diana Prince I grew up watching in the glorious Wonder Woman show but she kicks a lot of ass and gets shit done. She shows up just when you’re about to give up on the whole thing and somewhat redeems the movie, but it’s not enough.

All in all this movie was essentially a powerpoint presentation. There wasn’t any real story but a whole lot of flashy and admittedly amazing visual stimuli with a ripping score by Hans Zimmer (I am biased here because Zimmer is king in my books). That being said a lot of superhero movies do follow this format. I see people comparing this to The Avengers which I honestly hated a whole lot more. I think a lot of people will read that and get straight to their hate stations but honestly guys the Avengers sucked, Age of Ultron sucked and Batman v Superman was sucky but not entirely shit. Both movies are great examples of more style than substance but at least BvS has likeable characters.

It was awesome to see Batman and Superman beating the living shit out of each other and it was even more awesome to see Wonder Woman lasso the fuck out of Doomsday. If you go into this movie with the same attitude as any action movie you’re going to have a good time. Comparing this to the Dark Knight trilogy is a waste of time and energy, those movies were fantastic and brilliantly written and it is sad that it doesn’t live up to that but it’s not necessary to slam hyperbole everywhere saying THIS WAS THE WORST MOVIE I’VE EVER SEEN EVEN DAREDEVIL WAS BETTER THAN THIS (I’m looking at you Rotten Tomatoes).

bvs sad

Affleck being comforted by a small girl.

I just think fans of Superhero stories in general (myself included I love this genre in every format) act like spoiled brats when things don’t go their way. Fans of the DC franchise have been building up hype for this movie in a shark like feeding frenzy for months on end and when they finally saw the film and it wasn’t as perfect as they imagined it to be they took up their pitchforks and called for the heads of everyone involved. Except Affleck, everyone seems to love Affleck.

So everyone just needs to calm down. Just because you love something doesn’t mean it belongs to you exclusively, just because you’ve read all the comics or own a batman costume or think you know more than the average Joe when it comes to these characters, it doesn’t mean you could make a better movie or get to decide “oh it’s terrible it’s the worst thing I’ve ever seen and I feel personally attacked by Warner Brothers for RUINING MY ENTIRE LIFE.”

I will be watching this movie again, probably a few times and I will be complaining about certain things when I talk about it but I don’t feel like I need to burn down Warner Brothers because they didn’t perfectly create what I wanted.

In summary this was disappointing, but if you’re a fan of the genre go see it with your own eyes before you jump on the hate train. It’s a good enough movie, a solid 2.5 hours of fun superhero antics that isn’t completely terrible. Will it be held in high regard among Batman fans? not compared to the Nolan movies. Superman fans? Maybe but they are upset that Supes didn’t get as much character development as Batman. Justice League fans? it sets things up for the upcoming Justice League films yes but it’s a pretty rushed example of team work at the end.

bvs gang

Squad Goals

 

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Review: The X-Files Revival

SPOILER WARNING – None really but if you are still watching the original series and are yet to complete the first nine seasons save yourself the risk.

Like most Xfiles fans we have been hoping, praying (if religious) and speculating on whether our favourite show would ever come back.

Tonight, it did.

And not to be hyperbolic but it was absolutely incredible from start to finish and I currently feel like I’m riding a crazy Xfiles high.

We’ve been fans of this show since it was originally on in the 90s, the ominous theme song marked our bed time but most nights we would beg to stay up and watch, and often denied under the guise of “it’s the chicken one, it’s too scary.” But when we were slightly older we watched it religiously. And again, and again, and again.

And finally, our years of patience and our tenacity and wanting to believe have paid off.

xfiles02

Reunited and it feels so good!

The feel is the same as the original show, with some added tension between our favourite team Mulder and Scully, which we are hoping will be explained soon. The old mannerisms of both characters return, from the classic Mulder phone call to the unforgettable Scully sceptic face. The whole deal and I was internally screaming while texting my CablaGoobla co-writer all in caps with hundreds of emotional emojis.

They hold no punches, covering everything from 9/11, National Security, world events, big oil and of course GLOBAL ALIEN CONSPIRACIES.

We are introduced to a new character played by Joel McHale who blends in perfectly with the atmosphere of the show, and who (like all new characters) we are very suspicious of from the get go, Xfiles 101 here; Trust no-one.

Despite the episode of normal length, our hysteria and excitement made it feel like it went for approximately two minutes and both of us wanted to watch the whole episode again immediately.

xfiles03

I can not stress to you how fantastic this was, just wall to wall glory from the original Xfiles team, crushing every minute and bringing the goods from the very first frame to the very last second. The final scene particularly had me in awe, shouting at the screen as the credits began to roll, but thank you Fox because we get to watch part two tomorrow. Because we need answers, 2012 has come and gone and now that you’re back we are allowed to be irrationally impatient! BECAUSE WE ARE SO EXCITED.

If you’re not an Xfiles fan… Do yourself a favour and start from the pilot, you will never look back. If you are an Xfiles fan… well all I can say is.. you will not be disappointed, it’s everything you wanted the revival to be!!

I don’t even care if this review reads like the ravings of a complete lunatic. Because my favourite all time show is back and it’s just as fucking good as it ever was.

CablaGoobla out!

Ye Be Warned Wednesday: Pixels (2015)

This movie took a perfectly awesome premise (aliens attack earth with 1980s video game villains) and turned it into one of the most bogus things I have ever seen.

Now, I knew it was very risky territory going, the movie stars Kevin James and Adam Sandler who I am no fan of, in fact I actively avoid movies that either (or both) of them are in. But when I saw the trailer for Pixels I thought “hmm how could they fuck up a plot that seems to be really fun and action packed?” the answer, my friends, was IN EVERY CONCEIVABLE WAY.

The first of many instances I wish Sandler's character would die.

The first of many instances I wish Sandler’s                                 character would die.

This “action comedy” takes 45 minutes (yes I checked) to get to the action and as far as I can tell the comedy element was non existent. I laugh at some really dumb things, the other day I was at the park and I saw some kid eat shit on his bike  (he was fine by the way) and I chuckled to myself. Those five seconds of watching a kid fall off his bike were more entertaining to me than Pixels.

The comedy is low brow, big, scream in your face type comedy, which when done well can be hilarious (I’m looking at you Ace Ventura, hell even Adam Sandler’s 90s movies) but instead of uttering a SINGLE scoff laugh I just found myself cringing the whole way through.

Adam Sandler plays Adam Sandler (as usual) and Kevin James plays the President of the United States. But that’s not the bleak part, there are some actually AMAZING actors in this who utter less than ten lines (Sean Bean & Jane Krakowsi) which drove me absolutely nuts. Peter Dinklage (Game of Thrones) plays a mullet-rocking, arcade champion / convicted felon who says lines so cheesy it made me want to just hug Dinklage and say “it’s okay mate, we’ve all made mistakes.”

The Dream Team (if you are a middle aged crystal meth addict having a hard come down)

The Dream Team (if you are a middle aged crystal         meth addict having a hard come down)

The special effects are incredible, but don’t get excited there is only about half an hour of “exciting” action, I use the word exciting very very loosely here because in no way was I anywhere near the edge of my seat, in fact I was essentially laying down the entire movie and trying to decide if my time would be better spent having a hobo nap.

The scene from the trailer / poster that everyone seemed excited about starred Pacman, arguably the most iconic and famous of all arcade characters (slightly behind Donkey Kong & Mario of course). This whole section of the movie, fucking sucked. Imagine a giant game of Pacman on the streets of New York city, now imagine someone taking that AWESOME idea and spending 80% of the scene on Adam Sanders face and terrible one liners, it was a huge betrayal.

My face when I realised Sean Bean was in this, then again when they only used him for ten minutes of screen time.

My face when I realised Sean Bean was in this, then again when they only used him for ten                            minutes of screen time.

In summary: this movie was a complete piece of shit, I regret wasting my time (almost 2 hours of it) and literally asked myself “Jesus Christ what are you doing with your life?” while I was watching it. It was so bleak I contemplated my very existence and felt horribly guilty that I ever thought watching it was a good idea.

Things I would rather do than watch this movie again:
1. Go to the dentist
2. Kick my toe twenty five times
3. Drink olive oil
4. Get salmonella

Ye have been warned.

I’m refusing to add the trailer because I don’t want any of you to be deceived like I was.

Review: Avengers Age of Ultron (2015)

Ah yes, the Avengers – The “Super-Group” of heroes that is nowhere near as awesome as the X-Men and would 100% lose in a fight against Suicide Squad (that’s right I went there). As I am sure you all recall the first Avengers was a bleak slideshow of awfulness that went on way too long and had far too much Iron Man (who I hate with the passion of a thousand suns).

Well this team of bozos returned earlier this year in “Age of Ultron” a story of a determined and genius Artificial Intelligence created to bring peace on Earth. Despite creating this perfect robot capable of wonderful things The Avengers swear to destroy Ultron by the end of the film.

Poor Ultron, I mean really when you create an A.I whose sole purpose is to save the human race from an impending alien invasion you would THINK you would lay down some specific ground rules, for example Asimov’s laws of robotics, but no stupid Tony Stark (Iron Man / Robert Clowny Jnr) just failed and because of his failure Ultron is the “bad guy” when really he is the only good character in this film.

The cast of the Avengers looking at their pay cheques.

       “We’ve all made a huge mistake.”

I really hate the Avengers, so I am going to give you a character by character run down of why this movie was AWFUL before I get into the actual story, you might want to put on some protective gear because you are about to witness the DEEP BURN of rage.

Iron Man: I thought I would kick this off with the most annoying, least charismatic, most infuriating character. Iron Man was never taught to speak properly, every line that comes out of his smug mouth is mumbled to the point I had to turn my TV up to volume 40 just to hear him (11 is normal volume). I instantly regretted bothering because he also talks so god damn fast it just meant all I could hear was “mmmmmummmble” at maximum volume. Between his mumbling and failure to specify ONE SINGLE RULE for his AI to live by I found myself praying for his death ten minutes into the movie.

Captain America: Credit where credit is due Captain America does have some pretty sweet moves with that crazy shield of his during the fight scenes, and I appreciate that. What I didn’t appreciate was how lame this guy is. Yes we know you come from a “different time” and you didn’t choose to have superpowers / were experimented on but come on buddy, you really need to learn that it’s okay to swear when you are fighting an army of robots. Captain America is the superhero equivalent of that racist grandpa you have who gets away with everything because he’s “from a different time.”

"Lord forgive me, I hate myself".

“Lord forgive me, I hate myself”.

The Hulk: Casting Mark Ruffalo to play the Hulk would have to go on my top ten “What the fuckitty fuck were you thinking list.” The Hulk is an emotional guy, yes I know he resents his superpower of being able to turn into a giant green killing machine that can’t tell right from wrong (which in itself is annoying, I wish I could do that when I got angry). Mark “walking rom-com teddy bear” Ruffalo has too many feels. The only feels I want to see from the hulk is violent rage, and what’s up with the romance between him an black widow – BLEAK. The Hulk does punch in the face of Iron Man in one of the highlight fight scenes of the movie  though so I have to give him a few points for that one.

Black Widow: Oh Scarlett “how the might have fallen” Johanssen. You can just tell she regrets the life decision of signing on to do these movies in every single scene. Between the dead pan expression and monotone voice there really isn’t much to say about her character. The crazy thing is, she is an actually a good actress, everyone who saw “Her” is aware that her voice can indeed be used in many emotional ways but I think giving absolutely zero fucks about this film kind of takes the need for emotion away.

ScarJo starring as her current career all time low.

ScarJo starring as her current career all time low.

Thor: Thor is the only good thing about the Avengers, but he too is afflicted with THE MUMBLES. Every time this guy spoke I would sternly shout “SPEAK UP AN ENUNCIATE YOUR WORDS THOR” the Australian accent really does not help by lowering his voice about a thousand octaves (I’m Australian so this shouldn’t be an issue). That being said Thor’s zingers were the only ones that made me laugh and he does some pretty sick moves with THE HAMMER OF THOR. He is an actual superhero so he has my respect, even if I had to be his grandma the whole time telling him to “SPEAK UP LOVE.”

Hawkeye: This fucking guy. Hawkeye has ZERO superpowers, his “thing” is that he is good with a bow and arrow and he loves to complain about the fact he doesn’t have cool powers like the other ones. STOP REMINDING US YOU SUCK HAWKEYE, WE ARE FULLY AWARE THAT YOU SUCK. “wah I want to retire to go live with my pregnant wife in peace, but wah the Avengers need me too much” – NEWSFLASH they don’t. Get out of my life.

So having covered how much the protagonists suck I would like to point out how much the antagonist Ultron kicks ass.

Ultron: Voiced by James Spader Ultron is by far the best thing about this movie. An artificial intelligence with a glorious robot body, an army of drone robot slaves and the power to realise the reason the human race is going to die if aliens invade is because the human race is too busy killing each other to get their shit together to unite. This guy knows what’s up but he is foiled at every turn by the god damn shitty avengers!!!

All hail Ultron!

                        All hail Ultron!

So now you know the lay of the land, the main story of this movie is “will the Avengers kill the one thing this movie has going for it and save the human race from a fate they (let’s be real) probably deserve?” Well…

Joss Whedon (creator of Buffy) is responsible for this absolute monstrosity of a film, I don’t know what went wrong. Part of the charm of Buffy was the hilarious and over the top zingers but in this film the characters aren’t appealing enough to get away with them and they are so over used it just becomes cringe worthy. Please Whedon, see the error of your ways and return to your former glory, for the good of the industry.

In summary, this movie sucked, I hate everyone in it except the robots, robots rule, death to the Avengers.

Here’s the trailer:

Review: Insurgent (2015)

So ICYMI the film “Divergent” came out a few years ago and was the first in this series of films based on the Young Adult novels by Veronica Roth. Insurgent is part two, and let’s just say, it’s very underwhelming.

This is my reaction face, it never changes, it never falters.

This is my reaction face, it never changes, it never falters.

So the plot centers around a dystopian “end of the world” scenario (recurring theme in YA fiction these days) where the remaining citizens of the world are crammed into one city protected by a giant wall. The people are divided into “factions” and your faction is determined when you come of age as a teenager.

The first film (Divergent) revealed our protagonist “Tris” (Shailene Woodley) does not fit into any one faction but is in fact a “divergent,” this makes her kind of a superhero (who has the inherent skills of all factions but ZERO awesome powers), but like all superheros the big lady in charge (Kate Winslet) is not a fan.

Still with me? Look it seems complicated but it’s one of those things where two seconds into the movie you understand.

This second installment “Insurgent” picks up where the first film ended, which means Kate Winslet has decided she wants to reign supreme and tries to kill anyone standing in her way ala Hitler. But look out, a bunch of teenagers are coming after you on their god damn youthful high horse to ruin everything.

Teenagers, I'm honestly surprised none of them have slurpees.

Teenagers, I’m honestly surprised none of them have slurpees.

This movie…. sucked.

I am not a fan of YA fiction, simply because I can’t stand teenagers in real life and in movies they are always portrayed as wiser, braver, more heroic and generally better than adults, when let’s all be real, teenagers are the worst. We were all teenagers once, and when each of us looks  back on that time we cringe and think of what obnoxious assholes we all were.

Anyway aside from the major downside of yet another end of the world movie where teenagers save the day there really isn’t much to note about this movie. As always Kate Winslet is a shining beacon in a bleak world of expressionless acting, monotone dialogue and a sea of  CGI. Worth noting this is the only sequel Winslet has ever appeared in, and we can forgive her for this because for twenty years she has consistently appeared in much more interesting films.

Winslet on Twitter - "This movie is so boring #GirlsGottaEatTho"

Winslet on Twitter – “This movie is so boring                               #GirlsGottaEatTho”

While watching this movie I was just waiting for something cool to happen, I mean in theory this has potential to be a really cool SciFi story! I have heard the film is nothing like the book it claims to be based on (as always) so I can’t help but wonder if it’s worth reading to tap into the potential glory.

I was so bored. I just.. I can’t express how boring this was for me. I’m not even mad, I can’t even get mad enough about this movie to write a funny review because the whole thing was just cardboard.

Look, if you have kids, this is probably a good movie to watch with them. It’s generally harmless, they will probably love the action scenes, it’s easy for them to follow and it won’t make you AS MAD as a lot of other kids movies. But if you’re a grown up looking for a decent movie, don’t even bother, may I suggest you stare at a wall for two hours instead because in all honesty that would be just as entertaining as Insurgent.

I don’t like writing blunt mean reviews but Insurgent really missed the mark for me.

Here’s the trailer (that is actually awesome and totally tricked me into seeing the movie)

Review: Fear the Walking Dead (Premiere)

WELCOME TO NOOB CITY.

Yes this week AMC launched their spin off of the wildly popular “Walking Dead” appropriately titled “Fear the Walking Dead.” Having just watched the first episode I am intrigued by but also skeptical of this parallel story.

The show follows the EXCEPTIONALLY noobish Clark / Salazar family as the world slowly devolves into the zombie riddled Earth we have all come to know and love from Walking Dead. You got a few classic cliches in there from junkie son, rebellious teen daughter all the way up to step father JUST TRYING TO HELP OUT.

Mr & Mrs Noob with their children Obnoxious Teenage Girl and Heroin Face

Mr & Mrs Noob with their children Obnoxious                    Teenage Girl and Heroin Face

I liked this first episode, it’s a slow burn but it things are buiding nicely and I am extremely excited to actually watch the city of Los Angeles collapse into chaos as the mysterious zombie virus takes over. There are a lot of great in jokes (for us who know the world is coming to an end) as well as a handful of scenarios often use in the first ten minutes of zombie movies before shit hits the fan, they have played with all these scenes and hints nicely! But honestly if I don’t get some God-Damn answers I am going to be extremely cheesed.

The first of many "WHY DID YOU GO IN THERE" scenarios.

The first of many “WHY DID YOU GO IN THERE” scenarios.

My one criticism is…. not a single character appeals to me. I don’t know what it is about Walking Dead and now FTWD that makes me hate the characters!! It’s hard to tell if it’s bad / clunky writing that makes them awkward and unappealing or some kind of profound statement that only selfish, obnoxious assholes have what it takes to survive in this kind of world. Anyway, they all suck but hopefully we get introduced to some better people a little ways down the road. The acting is okay, it felt very soap opera from the premiere but I think that’s just because I am not used to seeing so many first world problems complained about in a show that centers around a zombie apocalypse.

The action factor was LOW but given this was the first episode and it seems the whole first season is going to be a slow build up to chaos I am willing to wait it out in the hopes I get some grade A face exploding carnage out of my long term investment. Again, if this investment does not yield some brutal violence though I am going to be very disappointed.

ALL IN ALL if you are a fan of The Walking Dead and want to see how “shit got fully fucked” by the zombie virus, check this out. If you’re not already a fan this is probably going to be a bit of a dull anticlimax for you! The first episode wasn’t great but I am holding my punches…. for now.

Here’s the trailer!

Review: Inside Out (2015)

Disney and Pixar have unleashed yet another animated rollercoaster of emotion for kids to stare at with wonder while the adults cackle and ugly cry the whole time.

Inside Out is set inside the mind of 11 year old girl Riley as a few big changes are taking place in her life. Right from the get go the emotion of Joy (Amy Poehler) takes the lead and leads us all on an adventure that is the cutest thing I have ever seen.

In the “Headquarters” of Riley’s mind we also have Anger (Lewis Black), Disgust (Mindy Kaling), Fear (Bill Hader) and Sadness (Phyllis Smith). These guys control all of Riley’s reactions as well as the processing of thoughts and general brain admin.

Literally all the feels.

Literally all the feels.

This movie was an absolute joy to watch (pun intended) it is exciting, emotional and full of adventure as well as being a wonderful representation of mental health and that all feelings have value and are important. It shows the way your mind grows up with you and how drastic these changes can be to a little kid, I thought it was beautiful.

To say I cried would be an understatement, this movie (like most Pixar movies will really bring out the child in all of us, they are so easy to relate to and pinch the nerves and bring out the feels BIG TIME, it was ugly cry central while I watched this movie.

Ermagherd Riley Noooo!

Ermagherd Riley Noooo!

All of the voice acting is fantastic, especially Amy Poehler as Joy. Everything she says will force a huge goofy smile on your face.

The writing is genius, as we go on this adventure of emotion each area of Riley’s brain is so beautifully illustrated and clever. From the world of abstracts that is the subconscious to the halls of stored memories being vacuumed up to make more room each location is so well thought out and designed that it will stir feels in everyone watching. It just encapsulates the complex world of thought and emotion in such a positive and fun way, I can’t stress how great I thought this movie was!!

I highly recommend Inside Out, kids will love it for the adventure, and there are A LOT of jokes for parents / grown ups. If anything I would say this movie was made especially for parents while throwing in all the things kids love as a bit of an afterthought.

It’s a short movie though, when the end came I found myself wanting more, but I think that may be because this movie made me feel like a kid again, and who doesn’t want to be back in their glory days of childhood every once in a while.

Here’s the trailer! Even watching this gave me all the feeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeels!