Captain America: Civil War (2016) – Review

Review: Initiated 8 years ago and assembled formally 4 years ago, world’s mightiest heroes—The Avengers is in a brink of division in Phase Three of Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) kicked off by Captain America: Civil War. Cap’s latest outing isn’t merely a direct sequel to The Winter Soldier; more, it’s a universal sequel to Avengers: Age of Ultron-call it Avengers: Disassembled—and an introduction to a larger MCU.

In aftermath of New York battle and Sokovia incident—where, for the first time in MCU, collateral damage is taken into account—citizens of the world demands supervision to Avengers’ actions as manifested in a decree called Sokovia Accords. Justice-driven Steve Rogers a.k.a. Captain America (Chris Evans) stands immediately against the accords; meanwhile, guilt-ridden Tony Stark a.k.a. Iron Man is pro-Accords for he is feeling responsible for the damage. As schisms immediately consume the Avengers, a series of terrorism threats allegedly done by Bucky Barnes a.k.a. The Winter Soldier leads the initially strong-in-unity Avengers into bigger riffs. Continue reading “Captain America: Civil War (2016) – Review”

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Eye in the Sky (2016) – Review

Review:  The U.K., U.S.A. and Kenya join forces in a mission to capture top-tier Al-Shabaab extremists meeting in Nairobi, Kenya. At surface, this looks like a war movie; but, director Gavin Hood (X-Men Origins: Wolverine) actually only devices a girl who sells bread to craft Eye in the Sky into this year’s most dilemmatic and taut thriller.

Col. Katherine Powell (Helen Mirren) is leading the mission called Operation Egret. On different part of the world, Lieutenant General Frank Benson (Alan Rickman) is supervising the operation with representative of U.K. governments.  Via surveillance drone controlled by pilot Steve Watts (Aaron Paul) and ground intelligence agent (Barkhad Abdi), Powell discovers the targets plan a suicide bombing and the operation instantly raise to “shoot to kill.” By the time, the missile is about to launch, the unexpected comes—the girl I mentioned previously enters the zone; the real war finally arrives.  Continue reading “Eye in the Sky (2016) – Review”

The Huntsman: Winter’s War (2016) – Review

Review: Snow White & The Huntsman (2012) was a fair attempt, period. Alas, nothing but the affair story between the Snow White (K-Stew) and director Rupert Sanders survives from the darker-than-any-fairy-tale project. Yet, it at least inspires Universal to continue delving to Snow White’s ill-developed universe as displayed in The Huntsman: Winter’s War.

Snow White and the director have already been eliminated from the development, and the torch is passed on first-time director (and VFX supervisor of the first film), Cedric Nicolas-Troyan. Winter’s War begins long before the event in the first film occurs. The titular huntsman from both films (Chris Hemsworth) becomes the center of a ‘love-conquer-all’ clash and queendoom rivalries that set a prequel, spin-off, and sequel to the predecessor. Continue reading “The Huntsman: Winter’s War (2016) – Review”

Straight Outta Compton (2015) – Short Review

Review: Exactly mirroring violent, candid, and depressing lyrics of gangsta rap behemoth, N.W.A a.k.a Niggaz Wit Attitudes, Straight Outta Compton is an unapologetic biopic of 5 Compton buddies rising from crime-laden suburb into million-dollar worth popularity.

F. Gary Gray’s directorial attempt is explicitly brutal and confident. However, the script seems loose in containing ‘what it meant to deliver’ in one vault—resulting in unequal storytelling. The first half is the most upbeat and power-house journey to controversial stardom with pumped-up energy—where the violent and straightforward lays. Meanwhile, the second half is a little letdown with unbalance portion of narrating the group’s downfall for several factors—Ice Cube’s departure, Jerry Heller’s fraud, and Eazy-E’s tragic death.  Continue reading “Straight Outta Compton (2015) – Short Review”

The Jungle Book (2016) – Review

The Jungle Book takes CGI into a whole new level—with idyllic details and awe-inspiring depth—without leaving the heart and the faith of Disney classic behind. The details of the ready-made theme-park wilderness as well as the perfect blend of voice-over and animal sounds are juxtaposed exotically with Louis Prima’s spirit.

Review: Jon Favreau’s The Jungle Book really takes audiences for a tour de force to CGI-laden wilderness of a subcontinental jungle. The best part is, the CGI fiesta does not serve as gimmicks instead it translate the whole picture into life.

Not only it captures the inner spirit of Rudyard Kipling’s children literature, it also paints the idyllic jungle life with heart and faith of Disney’s 1967 classic. It is a story of a jungle—along with the rules and the logic; the green, dark, and moist of the jungle juxtapose with the groovy life of its inhabitants.  Continue reading “The Jungle Book (2016) – Review”

10 Cloverfield Lane (2016) – Review

10 Cloverfield Lane has taken a ‘sequel’, even franchise development, into a new level. It’s completely original, savvy, thrilling, unpredictable, and cancerous at once, thanks to excellent performances from John Goodman and Mary Elizabeth Winstead. For maximum experience, I suggest you stay away from any trailers, promotional images, and even the original Cloverfield.

Review: Since J.J. Abrams announced that Dan Trachtenberg’s directorial debut , 10 Cloverfield Lane (initially called Valencia during production) would be a ‘blood relative’ sequel to Abrams-produced Cloverfield (2008), a new discourse embarks on this question: How ‘blood relative’ is defined?

Stripping off the groundbreaking found footage style from the predecessor and focusing more on a taut, psychological approach, it seems that the movie strictly conceals its ‘blood relative’ connection. And more, 10 Cloverfield Lane challenges the audiences to prove whether it is actually connected and/or emerged in the same Cloverfield-verse until the end. Since it’s spoiler-susceptible, I’d keep this review clean from any spoiler-y gimmick, which might taint its cinematic experience. Continue reading “10 Cloverfield Lane (2016) – Review”