Gunpowder Milkshake movie review

A lot tastier than the ostentatious juxtaposed title suggests, there’s nothing subtle about Gunpowder Milkshake but it’s aim to be an empowering, over-the-top, gloriously absurd actioner is true.

It’s ingredients:

The framing and mise-en-scene of Nicolas Winding Refn.

The manic energy of Neveldine/Taylor.

The stylised, orchestrated violence of Chad Stahelski.

The Looney Tunes style gunplay (and Paul Giamatti) from Shoot ‘Em Up.

The tasty Karen Gillan as the dominant flavour with a delectable array of supporting notes (Lena Headey, Michelle Yeoh, Carla Gugino, Angela Bassett) each adding their own spice to the mix.

Blend it all together and drink it all up in it’s delicious bloody goodness. 

Navot Papushado, I drink your milkshake. I drink it up! 

Chaos Walking movie review

In a world where The Hunger Games and The Maze Runner and Divergent and and and get multiple sequels, it’s criminal Chaos Walking looks like it’s going to be denied and disappear the way of Doug Liman’s previous YA franchise false start, Jumper.

It is true that this follows the genre (or should I say generic) playbook and brings very little new to the recently overpopulated YA dystopian science fiction genre, but that didn’t stop those other franchises.

What it does have is a fascinating core concept where the thoughts of men are externalised for all to literally see and a central pairing of Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley that are charismatic and committed and absolute bonafide movie stars. You know they done good when you’re not talking about Mads Mikkelsen (who is typically superb).

I would watch more. Fortunately there’s a series of books by Patrick Ness I can read in lieu if this never comes to fruition.

(#NowReading)

All-in-all, this is a solid if unspectacular entry in the genre and nowhere near the chaos reviews and ratings and production delays would have you believe.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine movie review

It’s true that Wolverine/Logan/Weapon X/James Howlett’s backstory has evolved over the years and isn’t always entirely clear. That doesn’t eXcuse this confused mish-mash of an attempt to bring a version to the big screen, however.

The opening credits – in the same release year as Snyder’s Watchmen and Fleischer’s Zombieland – are presented in speed-ramping style providing hope after the poorly-acted prologue. Sadly, the film never reaches this level of artistry again.

Despite the success of Schreiber’s casting as Sabretooth, I am not a fan of the forced family connection. It’s unnecessary and adds nothing to the legacy. It also makes a mockery of the uncanny likeness between actor Peter O’Brien and Hugh Jackman, considering that there is literally no blood connection between them.

Speaking of casting, only Huston as Stryker is similarly Schreiber successful. Everyone else, not so much, bub, which is a sin considering the quality of casting previously in the XCU. They’re either miscast (Kitsch), stunt cast (Will.i.am) or misrepresented (yes, I’m looking at you Reynolds’ Weapon XI).

A series of poorly choreographed, acted and effected vignettes in search of a cohesive movie, I can only assume that the prefiX Origins suggested there was going to be more such efforts looking at the most popular mutants before the advent of the X-Men. Much like The Mummy and it’s Dark Universe though, the poor quality of the inaugural effort left such franchise hopes screaming to the sky in frustration. 

Put an adamantium bullet in my head and eXtinguish the memory of this failed blunted and stunted Gambit.

Rick and Morty S5 review

This latest season has proved to be pretty run-of-the-mill and mediocre overall with no stand-out episode a la Pickle Rick or The Vat of Acid to elevate it.

Has the cartoon concept reached the end of its creative course?

The highlight for me was probably E3. A Rickconvenient Mort riffing on childhood cartoon Captain Planet or E1. Mort Dinner Rick Andre as a bizarro arrogant Aquaman comes to tea. The lowlight has to be E6. Rick & Morty’s Thanksploitation Spectacular which is essentially a full episode worth of the Family Guy Peter vs poultry punch up.

Inevitably, I’ll watch if and when it returns for S6 but equally I’d also be happy for them to only sporadically release specials when the concept for the episode is strong enough.

Rebecca (2020) movie review

I haven’t read the source novel by du Maurier.

I haven’t seen the adaptation by Hitchcock.

I watched this readaptation by Ben Wheatley fresh without expectations or preconceptions.

I really enjoyed the immersive experience of 2020 Rebecca.

I was drawn into the world through the charismatic screen presence of Lily James and Armie Hammer.

I completely bought into their romantic entanglement and attraction to each other.

I was entranced by the opulent set and costume design and location shooting.

I was invested in the morality tale unfolding before me with no easy answers and a choice of character to root for.

I am continually amazed by Wheatley’s ability to genre hop and always deliver the cinematic goods, as he’s done so once again here.

I watched the readaptation by Wheatley.

I have plans to see the adaptation by Hitchcock.

I have the desire to read the source novel by du Maurier.

Toy Story 2 movie review

A first watch with my youngling SpySon. “More Daddy” was the response as the credits rolled.

A double figure watch for this fortysomething. Don’t worry son, there’s still another couple I can introduce you to.

A superior sequel. Pixar pluperfect.

And as the years go by
Our kinship will never die
You’re gonna see it’s our family destiny
You’ve got a friend in my SpySon
You’ve got a friend in my SuperSon
Yeah, you’ve got a friend in all of me.

Blankets comic review

This book isn’t a cuddly comforter. It presents that to you right from the very start.

What it is is an intensely personal portrait laid out to bare for the world to read like a patchwork memory quilt. 

Which they should.

Written and illustrated by Craig Thompson, this autobiographical coming-of-age graphic novel centres around Craig and his first love relationship with manic-dream-pixie manifestation Raina, but also manages to touch upon religion, sibling love, familial love, divorce, abuse, the perils of peer pressure, bullying and disability.

It’s not light reading but it is excellent reading.

Drawn in stark black and white in contrast to the world of grey it presents, this choice is not about simplicity and shortcuts, as evidenced by the frequent splash pages and panel work that plays with the form and manipulates the reader’s experience so we can get into Craig’s dreamy, poetic headspace.

There are so many areas of potential identification that some of it rings uncomfortably true which I’m sure it would do for all of you at times too.

This is indie comics.

Toy Story movie review

A first watch with my youngling SpySon. Silence is the golden measure on such occasions. You could have heard Mr. Potato Head pieces drop.

A double figure watch for this fortysomething. Still moves me and makes me laugh as much as it always does. You could have heard my heart swell getting to share this viewing experience.

Pixar perfection. Right out the gate. You are a superior, sterling production company, and you have my admiration.

Till next time. 

X-Men: The Last Stand movie review

Astonishing how this took two celebrated comic arcs and mutated them together into an adaptation less than the sum of its parts.

Many returning characters are done a disservice here whether through script choice or actor departure. It hurts the instalment without tarnishing the overall franchise legacy. New characters are pretty naff and unmemorable too.

Considering the title and themes, it really should have an epic Endgame quality to proceedings but instead the film seems to be in a rush (much like the original) to get the intertwined stories done-and-dusted. Not every film needs to be two-plus hours but this trilogy closer deserved space to breath.

All that said, it isn’t the dark disaster many label it. Some bold choices were made, that you have to acknowledge even if you don’t agree with them, giving the world weight and consequences most comic movies shy away from.

It’s Janssen’s best performance, even if she isn’t given enough to do; Berry’s pick of the bunch, too. Iceman comes of age in a cool moment whilst Kitty phasing and Juggernaut bashing through walls is a smashing visual. The fastball special fan service also hits the mark.

I’m going to take a stand and say although X3 is a drop back in quality from X2, it’s on a par with X and if I was to choose one of the two to watch I’d probably opt for this, despite its flaws.

Disagree?

Don’t you know who I am? iamjacsmusings, bitch.