The 5 minute review: Watchmen: Director’s Cut (Bluray) WARNING SPOILERS

July 24, 2009

Alright, I’ve already reviewed the theatrical cut, which you can read the pros and cons of it HERE.  So this will be a short review of the Director’s Cut of the Bluray release.

First off, I think I prefer this director’s cut to the original although half of the added scenes are added violence (one which is fitting and the rest not really necessary) and the other half of the footage was mainly scene extensions that added a bit more detail to the story and added lines from the graphic novel.  Personally I prefer the DC, although it makes the film top the three hour mark.

The most important scene that was added was Hollis Mason’s death.  It was very well done, having Mason flashback and envision he was fighting his old enemies from his vigilante days as he fought for his life and ultimately died.

The bookend to that scene was Dreiberg’s reaction to the news of his good friend’s murder at the hands of knot tops while Rorschach was interrogating someone at a bar.  He basically sees a knot top at the bar that makes a comment he probably should have kept to himself considering that Dan just found out his friend was murdered which costs him an ass beating (as well as some of his teeth).  My favorite part of this scene was Rorschach’s unintentionally funny (or was it?) line; “Dan…not in front of the civilians.”  I believe this scene was lifted from the graphic novel.

Outside of the added footage, the quality of the audio and video is second to none.  I know a lot of people hate on Zack Snyder but I really dig his eye for visuals.  The movie looked gorgeous in theatres and looked incredible on my HDTV.

Audio was also crisp and clear with a punchy audio track that will give your setup a workout.

Overall, I really enjoyed the Director’s Cut and if you enjoyed the movie, I can’t imagine you liking this less.

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The 5 minute review: Let The Right One In (Bluray)

July 24, 2009

More like let the wrong one into my PS3.

I’m surprised how little I cared for this movie given all of the praise it’s gotten.  I’m not a big vampire movie fan, but that’s not the problem I had with this movie, for me it was the pacing.  The movie moved so incredibly slow and was so incredibly ambiguous that it left me wondering what the hell the point was.  I’m usually all for less is more (it’s one of the reasons why I love the games ICO and Shadow of the Colussus), but here it felt like 20 minutes worth of story happened (albeit pretty decent story) in a two hour movie.  I got what the movie was trying to say, I guess the problem was that nothing happened to make me care.

Usually I can at least see why people swoon over a movie but I can’t say I can see it with this one.

It was an ok movie, but it did nothing for me.


Watchmen Review [MASSIVE SPOILERS]

March 7, 2009

WARNING:  If you read this review before watching the movie, you will ruin it for yourself.  You have been warned!

 

Wow where the fuck do I start? One of my favorite graphic novels in movie form…so this movie was a big deal to me.

First off let me say that you can tell by the way everything was filmed that Zack Snyder really respects the work. It’s a lose-lose situation here because if he deviates from the aesthetic and style of the graphic novel, then he’s a dick for changing too much of it and if it’s exactly like the graphic novel then he’s a hack because all he did was lift images/dialogue from the graphic novel which apparently takes no talent to do.

I think that for the most part, the movie stayed true to the graphic novel for as much as it could have been possible. I’m actually amazed by how much of it was like the comic and sometimes with disturbingly unflinching detail.

I’ll go into detail as to what I liked and didn’t like.

Likes:

Opening Credits- It was a very clever way of giving you some backstory without spending too much actual screen time on it.

Rorschach- Such a great performance by Jackie Earle Haley. The movie is worth watching based on his performance alone. There is not one thing I disliked about his performance. Although I always imagined Rorschach to have an accent, Haley did such a great job that I didn’t care.

The Comedian- I absolutely loved Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s depiction of him….it was spot on! Aside from Rorschach, it was my favorite performance. The scene when Nite Owl and The Comedian clear out a riot and the scene where he’s in Vietnam are some of my favorites (I can’t believe they showed him kill the girl he impregnated).

Imagery- I liked the way Zack Snyder filmed this. It had a similar “cinematic flair” that 300 had before it, but not as intrusive or in your face. Everything looked as I thought it would.

Dr. Manhattan’s “retelling” of his origin- This was the scene I was most worried about them butchering because it’s one of my favorites. Luckily, I think they nailed it for the most part. It’s just as I read it when I first read the GN and really got the feel and tone of it right. 

You know what? I practically liked everything about the movie. From the action scenes (which although greatly elaborated on compared to the graphic novel, still bad ass), to the acting, to the pacing…everything felt right…except a few things.

Dislikes 

The ending- Let’s get this out of the way first. Although I didn’t like the fact that they changed the ending, it wasn’t the complete aberration I expected it to be. They almost had it right (as right as you can have it while changing the ending I mean) but there were a few things I felt they should have done to make it 100% acceptable.

First off, they should have shown the energy detonating in several cities around the world, not just New York. This would have made Dr. Manhattan a common enemy whether the USSR liked it or not. That makes a lot of sense to me (within the context of the ending we got), and would explain why the major powers around the world would have something at stake when joining forces with the United States to stop Dr. Manhattan. If that was done, it would have made me be completely ok with the ending. Let’s face it everyone, having it be a fucking squid would have made just about everyone check out as far as caring about the story.

Nite Owl’s reaction to Rorschach’s death- Yes I expect Nite Owl to completely lose his shit when he was killed but the timing was all wrong. The way it should have been timed is that he walks out right as it is happening.

Otherwise having him watch the whole exchange between Rorschach and Dr. Manhattan (you could see what was coming based on what they were saying), watch him get killed, and then react the way he did seemed silly. ign_tongue.gif

No Hollis Mason death- Really? This could have been done with one quick scene. Without that scene it seems like all of Mason’s scenes/references were just randomly added to the story with little reason. 

 

Ozymandias: I did the right thing didn’t I? it all worked out in the end.

Dr. Manhattan: ‘In the end’? Nothing ends, Adrian. Nothing ever ends.”

 They completely butchered this line…to the extent that they didn’t even have the proper characters say it and simply had someone say “I bet he’d respond with”. 😦 Not a big deal, but that was one of my favorite lines from the graphic novel.  

Overall I really liked the movie. There’s one thing that no one can say about this movie and it’s that it shat on the original work because it kept most of the GN’s core themes intact. In fact, I’ll be looking forward to seeing it again and will more than likely get the Bluray release of it. It wasn’t as good as the graphic novel, but most of these kinds of things never are.


The 5 minute review: Resident Evil: Degeneration (Bluray)

January 19, 2009

 I don’t think it was completely devoid of entertainment, but it wasn’t a great movie.  The CGI was pretty one minute and unimpressive the other.  The lip syncing and facial expressions could have been MUCH better.   Also at no point did I find the movie atmospheric or scary. Then again, horror movies do nothing for me.   The voice acting was fairly solid all around with nothing that would offend anyone that likes good voice acting.  The video quality was great, but I found the sound quality to be pretty average.

The only redeeming factor is that this is the first time Claire Redfield and Leon have teamed up since Resident Evil 2 (this movie supposedly takes place after Resident Evil 4, but before Resident Evil 5).  The Claire/Leon dynamic is still not enough for me to recommend it to anyone but die hard Resident Evil (the videogame series, not the movies) fans .