Logan Review

This review is of the TV-14 edited version of the film. All thoughts below should be addressed as such as a review of the unedited version would be more negative

Wolverine’s had a checkered history with his films. Most people didn’t care for the first one or even the second all that much. This was the one that finally made the books as a definitive title for the character. At least for most people because after seeing this one I can confirm that it is the weakest film in the X-Men franchise. Yes, weaker than X-Men origins. It’s a very depressing look at how the Marvel Universe could have turned out for the mutants and Wolverine never really got to have his happy ending.

The movie starts up in the future where Wolverine is even more of a drunk than usual and doesn’t have any qualms about using his claws on people now. He’s just sick of everything turning out so badly so he’s been saving up money for a while now. He’ll take Professor Xavier away and they’ll both basically die. Wolverine even got himself some adamantium bullets to finish the job. Before any of this can happen, a lady appears asking for his help. Wolverine definitely says no since his adventuring days are over but she is murdered and her daughter Laura ends up hitching a ride.

Professor Xavier insists on their helping her so Wolverine is stuck now. He’ll have to try and get her to her final destination which is supposed to be a safe haven from the mutant hunters. This won’t be easy though as something is up with Wolverine’s abilities and his healing regeneration has been greatly reduced. Meanwhile Xavier has a lot of seizures now and can barely use his abilities either. Time is not on their side so the race is on.

I definitely have a lot of issues with the film, mostly just around how depressing it all is so lets go with the positives first. The fight scenes are very solid. I think that characters with a strong regeneration ability should be used to fighting a little recklessly because any trade is actually in their favor. So they can be good with either landing hits on their own, or dealing out equal damage. It makes sense so I’m cool with that and Wolverine does get in some good combos once he gets going.

I do think he feels very nerfed but at least there is a story reason for it. Otherwise I would expect Wolverine to look much better in this film. Another positive is that Laura’s character was handled very well. She has grown up with a rather lousy life at this point and so she is doing her best to move on forward. She doesn’t dwell on the past all that much and only talks when necessary. She really just wants to complete her mission and get to safety to put this life of violence behind her. When she does fight Laura is calculated and ruthless in destroying her opponents.

She’s not some kind of super hero so she doesn’t have to worry about the mercy rule. Laura’s life has always been in a do or die scenario so if she doesn’t strike quickly then she knows that it could all be over. I thought she was definitely the highlight here and in general I always liked her character. It would be a lot of fun to see her more in some future movies.

Okay now lets talk about some of the iffy stuff. First we have to talk about Wolverine. I’m cool with a main character being reluctant to help and not wanting to get back into the hero game. So when he turns the lady down the first few times you can understand. There is no obvious threat at the moment and there are presumably others who can help. Once she asks him for help again by flagging his car (Wolverine runs an Uber type operation) and it’s obvious that she is in critical danger, he shouldn’t have left her again.

Bring her and Laura with him in the car. Abandoning her was just an awful look and I can see why Laura was so upset. Logan tries abandoning Laura several times as well later on in the film. He also puts Caliban in a rather bad spot by having him drive off with the villain. This version of Logan has absolutely 0 qualms about killing so just stab the guy a few more times to make sure that he doesn’t get up,. I’ll give him less grief about this though since he thought that the guy was dead.

Logan is just way too depressed here though to the point where he acts like a villain. It’s almost like Bruce Wayne nearly murdering Terry McGuiness back in the first episode of Batman Beyond by turning off the suit. There’s a line that you cross when you go too far into being a thorn in the way of justice. That’s just how Logan is here and it takes an extremely long time until he finally gets ready for action.

Then you throw in the fact that he’s a lot weaker here and it’s annoying to see him lose just about every fight that he’s in. Common thugs are beating him up left and right, never mind the X-24 clone who really lays him out. Even if Wolverine’s not a nice guy anymore, you hope to see him getting some wins but until his rage mode near the end he is getting thrown around a whole lot. It’s not cool and it definitely doesn’t help him as a character. I just didn’t like Logan here, his days of being the Wolverine were definitely long gone.

I can’t say that I liked how Xavier was portrayed either. The guy is half crazy and can’t even control his own abilities with the seizures now. I have a super hard time believing that this could happen to a telepath, particularly one of Xavier’s ability. The twist of how this affected the X-Men was also awful. It’s certainly a convenient way to make sure that nobody else shows up but it’s not satisfying at all. To think that this is how it would all end after so many battles and fights to achieve peace between humans and mutants.

This ending is certainly not what anyone would have hoped for. I’d have much preferred Xavier to go out in a blaze of glory or something like that. In the end, the world went from being fantastical to quite normal since the world seems like any everyday place now. At least Caliban seemed like a reasonable guy right from the start for the heroes. He was probably the only one who seemed like a nice guy with no drawbacks so of course things get really rough for him here.

As for the villains, Pierce is the main one and he’s okay I guess. There’s just not a lot to him and you could think of the guy as an average thug only he’s got some tech so he can fight a little bit. I think with a bit more screen time he could have been better as the charismatic kind of villain but the film was not able to pull that off. Dr. Zandar is your average twisted scientist villain who just likes to be as evil and cruel as possible so there’s not much to him either. Not a quality villain.

The only one who seemed solid was X-24. At first I actually thought he was Sabretooth who somehow managed to return to the main lines once more but the twist worked out rather well. I like the idea of this guy being as savage as Wolverine was in his prime so the dilemma is in how to take this guy out. He really is quite strong and made for an impressive threat. Whenever he was on screen you knew that things were going to get really tough for the heroes.

As you’d probably expect, this film gets very violent. You really have the claws in full force by both the heroes and villains with the usual human experimentation going on as well. It’s trying really hard to be the most violent of the X-Men films to live up to the Wolverine rep and it earns this but at the detriment of the film. You don’t need all of this excessive violence and it takes away from the action scenes. The movie definitely should have toned things down and it would have helped out.

At least the ending of the film is solid enough. I didn’t have any issues with it and it seemed like a classic way to end things. I absolutely would have preferred a happier ending with more room for big sequels and all that but it still wasn’t bad. It’s not a grim dark ending either, just more of a bitter sweet one so the heroes couldn’t win on all fronts and had to settle for a few.

At the end of the day, part of the problem with this film is that it’s going more for an apocalyptic future vibe rather than being a full blown comic book movie. You don’t have too many big battles with lots of super abilities and flashy CGI. Instead you usually have very dreary backgrounds with the characters fighting very ordinary humans aside from X-24. The fact that the humans do well is sad in itself. At least by the end you have them taking the Ls as the heroes finally get ready for combat.

Overall, Logan’s not a good movie. It really wrecks Logan’s character quite thoroughly and I would say that Xavier was really mishandled as well. Laura was a shining point in the movie at least. You’re better off watching Dark Phoenix as the true end point to the X-Men series as that one soared above expectations and did deliver with a lot of fun fights and cool plots going on. If Wolverine does get another film, I’d like them to just put him in a fun setting and let us see Wolverine the superhero as opposed to Logan, the jaded old timer.

Overall 4/10

Morbius Review


Morbius is one of those films that seemed doomed on arrival. Nobody really cared all that much about the character so why would a whole film about him do good? It’s also vampire themed which was tapped out decades ago. The only thing that put this film on the map were the memes and unfortunately it’s safe to say that the memes are better than the actual film. I wanted to hear someone yell “It’s morbin time!” in the film at least once. Ah well, at least the second after credits scene is hilarious and one of the funniest ones you’ll ever see. It’s a serious scene that is funnier than most of the humor based ones so the film has that going for it.

The movie starts by introducing us to Morbius and his friend Milo who were both born with a very rare blood disease. They can barely even walk and their bodies will continue to deteriorate until they die very young. They also have nonstop pain that hits them during every waking moment so their lives are quite tough. Morbius is determined to develop a cure though. Many years pass and Morbius is really close but the only solution appears to be involving bats and he will have to break a lot of laws to pull this off. Morbius succeeds but at a heavy cost. He is now a vampire and must drink blood in order to survive. Fake blood also won’t suffice for very long so soon he will need to feed on humans. Can Morbius resist the urge and find a cure for the cure or is he doomed? One thing’s for sure, he has no catchphrase to fall back on and save his life.

Lets talk about some of the stuff that doesn’t work here. Right off the bat you can bet that the blood stuff is a non starter here. You always have Morbius drinking blood and everything because that’s how he is able to exist. We don’t really see the blood but it’s nevertheless quite gross to see him drinking out of the bags and always gagging afterwards. Blood is just not a good drink to have at the ready and it’s a disadvantage of the vampire genre.

Then you also have this really awful song/dance sequence for Milo. Oh man it could have at least been semi decent if the song wasn’t so bad but it was one of the worst songs I’ve seen in a film in quite a while. The film couldn’t afford to have a scene like that because it was already skating on thin ice. I also just didn’t like Milo in this film. The guy gets too emotional too quickly and never thinks anything through rationally. He’s the kind of guy who seems okay for a minute there but very quickly you realize that any amount of power would quickly corrupt him. This guy is not hero material.

As for Morbius, the guy was running experiments on animals which is a really rough way to start his character arc. Experimenting on animals is never okay and so that’s an easy way to get me not to root for the character. He’s also just not my kind of lead for the most part as he lacks confidence and isn’t ready to just get in there and start landing hits. There are some brief moments where he gets real confidence and starts to be a real main character but those moments rarely last. At least based on the after credits scene he is finally back to being a confident leader so if they stick with that for any sequels then that will be an improvement.

The real standout character here was actually Al. So in a subplot that doesn’t go anywhere you have these two cops, Simon and Al. They are basically following Morbius around and trying to get to the bottom of the situation. What I liked about Al a lot was how he was able to quickly see through everyone’s lies. For one reason or another everyone he talked to would always lie to his face. So Al tends to give sarcastic remarks back to let them know that he knew they were lying and t was a nice dynamic. I was glad that he didn’t just play dumb there. This guy was quick on the uptake and I think giving him more scenes would have been nice.

Then you have the serious member Simon. He gets a quick chase scene with Morbius and holds him at gun point so this guy is very impressive. I really think the cops had a solid dynamic so it’s a shame that they couldn’t have done more. As it is, you could cut them out of the film and nothing would really change. They may give some set up for a sequel film but at the end of the day that doesn’t have much baring on this one.

The main heroine here is Martine and she’s a solid character. You just wish the film didn’t have to throw her into a romance right away. It doesn’t add anything to the film and the romance is just so weak. You don’t see why this started at all because they had a good working relationship going and you don’t want to wreck that by having both characters start getting emotional. It’s always best to keep it professional and that would have been a good idea. At least this way Morbius has an extra loyal ally at all times. Martine does well in staying strong under pressure.

Finally you have Emil who was the mentor type figure in the film which means that the death flags around him were absolutely massive. It’s very rare for the character to not get absolutely wrecked in a film like this. At least he talks tough and seems to be in the know. There’s not a whole lot he could have really done differently here.

One positive thing I can say about the film is that the effects are really good. Personally I liked the energy trails that Morbius would leave behind him during fights. The action scenes really hold up quite well. Morbius is also surprisingly powerful so he would definitely be able to hold his own against other Marvel heroes. His only weakness would be the time limit without drinking blood so he’ll need to find a fix for that. So at least the movie does have a little glimmer of hope there.

The sequel just needs to focus more on the action and less on the vampire elements. It also needs a fresh villain here, someone with a different power set so you can have more imaginative battles. I would have my hopes quite low for a sequel but I am sure that you can still pull it off with the proper writers and a good story. You don’t even need to rely on guest stars although they certainly would not hurt.

Also, one of the main conflicts here felt a little forced in how it happens. It reminded me a lot of the Amazing Spider-Man 2. So keep in mind that with this condition you are constantly in a lot of pain and so if there’s a way to end that pain then you’re most likely going to take it. I felt like Morbius had 0 empathy at this point and handled the situation in the worst way possible. At least offer some hope about a real cure coming soon but otherwise it does appear to everyone like Morbius was thinking “I got mine!” and leaving it at that.

It doesn’t excuse the villain from going crazy immediately but you can definitely see how it happened. The whole situation may not have been avoidable but it’s hard to say and would definitely have gone differently at the very least otherwise. It’s not that hard to have at least been a little tactful but of course that’s not Morbius’ strength.

The film doesn’t really have many fun scenes either. Like you’re never laughing except for after the credits and most of the film is just rather dreary. I would say the premise was fine but the execution was just bad. Still, if you do watch the film then stick around for the after credits scenes. I actually liked both of them which is rare since when you have two, usually one of them will be sub par as a result. Fortunately that was not the case this time.

Overall, Morbius is basically as bad as everyone said it was. The film just didn’t even feel like it was trying. The vampire stuff is pretty bad but even the normal scenes tend to be okay at best. I liked Morbius beating up some thugs and stealing their base but for every scene like that you have 5 lab scenes of him either drinking blood or getting hit with needles. The movie needed a completely different approach. Ironically the memes actually laid the groundwork for this so the sequel should embrace them and then the film could be good. Perhaps it would feel a bit like pandering but if executed right then we’d really be in business.

Overall 3/10

Skyscraper Review


Skyscraper is a film that didn’t get a ton of hype after it was released. It just seemed to be forgotten by the wayside right away. Still, the trailers looked like fun and I would say that the movie delivers on the premise. It may not be doing anything super original but it’s what I would call a very safe action film. You know what you’re going to get. There aren’t any big twists and turns here, just a lot of big action stunts and some fight scenes. You can’t go wrong with this title and any action fan will have a good time here.

The movie starts off with Will taking a big injury which forces him to retire from the hostage squad. Fortunately he has a good gig as a security consultant now and was even invited over to check on the largest building in the world. His wife Sarah and their two kids are allowed to live in the building in the meantime as it’s otherwise empty for the moment. It’s all looking good until a bunch of terrorists light the building on fire and race to the top. They want to grab some kind of device that Zhao has, so the CEO locks himself in the penthouse suite. Will has 3 objectives now, he needs to rescue his family, stop the terrorists, and recover the device. If he is unsuccessful then the world could be in grave danger.

To try and give the villains a fighting chance for a change, Will lost his leg a while back so he has to use a prosthetic in order to move around normally. While the intent may have been to nerf his abilities a bit, I wouldn’t say that the film did a great job here since it doesn’t really seem to slow him down at all. If anything it comes in handy for things like stopping doors from closing or being used as a blunt object. Suffice to say, there are no fighters here who can take Will on. At best they can buy some time for themselves by taking hostages as otherwise Will would just take them out in an instant.

Will’s a solid main character. He’s your classic family man just trying to do a good job and keep it moving. The guy’s previous history of combat experience is comically long which I think the film was having some fun with as the detective reads off his profile. I can definitely see how you could do more sequels to this film if you really wanted to since Will is a jack of all trades here. Regardless, there’s nothing bad to say about him.

Will’s wife Sarah also does well when it counts. She is able to use some self defense against one of the villains when he attacks and she is able to generally take control of the situation rather well. Knowing the basics of combat really goes a long way. The two kids mainly just get in the way. It’s mostly unavoidable I suppose since they’re just kids but they won’t be winning any awards here. Without them the adventure would have been a lot easier for the heroes.

Now as the film goes on we also get to see the outside world reacting to this a bit including Inspector Wu. He does his best to get a handle on things but he is really ineffective here. It doesn’t help that his sidekick is super determined to prove that this was an inside job despite all evidence to the contrary. I thought she was incredibly unreasonable the whole time. In other movies there are instances where the skeptic is reasonable but this isn’t one of them. For example, you know all the classic films where a character is stabbed so they immediately say that they can’t be guilty since no person would stab himself?

I always call foul on that because a good villain would absolutely do that. This film though makes that more unreasonable, you have Will’s family being held hostage and the guy is jumping across buildings and performing all kinds of big acrobatic stunts. There is also a lot of visible evidence that people have entered the facility. It just seems like a reach to keep pinning this on Will and Wu takes some blame for just allowing it to happen and not saying much.

The film’s villains are more on the forgettable side though. First up we have Ben who is the most petty one of the group. He whines a lot about how the world is unfair as his justification for what he is doing and lets just say that I wasn’t shedding any tears over here. The main villain is Botha and at least he’s tough. There’s just not much to say about him beyond the fact that his skills are quite impressive. At least he is actually able to give Will a fight which is always important. Then there’s his right hand woman Xia who is fairly tough and down to business.

The villains aren’t bad, they just don’t stand out. There isn’t much more to them beyond their desires for money and destruction. You won’t remember much about them by the time the film is over. In general that’s why this film will be known as more of a general action film. It follows all of the classic story beats and doesn’t make any mistakes with them but it’s also not trying to go beyond that.

The writing is good and the pacing is on point. The movie’s effects and backgrounds also just look good. I certainly wouldn’t want to be in a floor where the ground is transparent though. That just seems like a bad idea. I don’t care how strong the glass is, it feels like you would fall through at any moment and I just couldn’t get behind that. In general I’ve never seen the appeal of being super high up though. I’m absolutely satisfied being close to the ground.

Overall, Skyscraper is a pretty good film. I’m not going to say that it’s great or anything like that but it certainly does the job and doesn’t leave you shaking your head. It’s just taking a very safe approach which is a valid way to go about this. I’d like to see it try to take the next step in a sequel though. Then it can ideally really begin to show what it’s got. Still, you’ll have a good time here as you just enjoy the atmosphere.

Overall 7/10

Picnic Review


This film is one of those titles where it’s a little hard to feel bad for the main guy at times because he keeps making the situation more and more difficult for himself. If he had just been upfront with everyone then the film probably wouldn’t have even had much of a dilemma. Still, in the end that’s not the tactic that the guy decided to use and it ended up costing him quite a bit. This can be a decent drama film but probably not one that you will be finding to be too memorable.

The movie starts off with Hal heading over to a small town. He is penniless once again as things just don’t work out for him but he doesn’t want anyone to know it so he makes up stories about being rich or coming here on a vacation. The train driver doesn’t buy this for a minute but couldn’t care less anyway. The real trouble starts once Hal gets into the town and he asks his old friend Alan for a job. Alan’s a good guy and is willing to help but becomes less enthusiastic once Hal starts making up stories about being a big shot or Alan really wanting him to work at this job. Hal also starts attracting quite a few ladies at the village and now everything’s going crazy. What can he do?

So the first thing Hal could have done would have been to just tell things straight. He fell on hard times and Alan is doing him a favor. Don’t hide those facts, especially when Alan is right there. Hal really pushes his luck in just about every scene and the lies aren’t even that convincing so you know that they are going to fall all around him at any moment. The whole film is really just watching the world around him slowly burn as a result.

He shouldn’t deserve all of the blame though as the other characters could have handled things better as well. In particular I thought Rosemary got off way too easily. She basically tries to cheat with Hal because she wants some excitement and when he isn’t too keen on the idea she causes a huge scene and puts him on a spot. This destroyed what was left of his reputation and completed Alan’s decision to turn against him.

I wouldn’t say Alan was great either here. I can see why he was upset about Hal lying the whole time and that’s understandable but then towards the end it almost feels like he is being easily manipulated by Rosemary’s big scene. Like that was the tipping point when I would have changed that to a different scene. By the end he’s definitely not ready to be all that reasonable anymore.

The main heroine here would be Madge as she always had the best chance from the 3 ladies. She likes Hal well enough but I can see why some of the other characters are skeptical and warn her not to pursue him. All that know about this guy is that he’s a chronic liar who gets into a lot of trouble and doesn’t seem reliable in the slightest. Keep in mind that he just got into town and by the end of the movie he’s already being chased out of it. Is this really the guy you want to pin your entire future on? It seems a little reckless at best and flat out irresponsible at worst. I can’t say that I was able to get behind the romance here at all.

It’s all much too quick and the ladies here seem too desperate. The guys get jealous but I guess their bonds just weren’t all that strong. One thing that holds Picnic back though is that there isn’t much of a plot beyond this. It’s really just about Hal showing up and causing a panic because of his lies and the fact that he was too good looking for the little town. That’s it, it’s not like there is a big villain (Rosemary is the closest to that) or a lot of twists and turns. The movie just goes on until it ends. It’s a low key drama with some romance.

To make that work you would likely need more humor or a very strong cast of characters. This film has neither of those. It’s not boring at least and goes by fairly quick but I wouldn’t call this a good movie. It’s just not quite strong enough to make it to that level. I wouldn’t say it has a lot of replay value either and I can’t think of what hook I would use to tell people to watch it. There isn’t a really big reason in particular to recommend this film to people. Even the picnic itself isn’t all that memorable.

The town sure does make it a big deal though. It’s like a whole festival just for hanging around outside and eating. The fact that a picnic is one of the biggest events in the town also shows you how there isn’t a lot to do here. You better enjoy the food because otherwise that would be game over. I think what would have made the film more interesting would have been if the film leaned into the premise a bit more and had like 20-30 different people going after Hal or if it focused a bit more on how his lying making things tough on the town.

Have him break something by accident and lie about it or point the finger at someone else. Effectively Hal would be destroying the town from the inside by getting everyone to be really suspicious of each other. That would have absolutely been the best way to go here and I think it would have been highly effective. It would have certainly amped up the drama here and also given the town more reason to be so angry at him. Otherwise it’s not like the guy was a super criminal here, he didn’t do enough to justify how everyone turned so violent by the end. Even if Alan and Rosemary were instigating most of it.

Overall, Picnic isn’t a very memorable title and it’s also not a very eventful one. If you want to watch a film about a picnic then that’s probably the novelty feature for this movie but that’s just not enough of a hook. You can do a lot better with both romance and drama films so you can just leave this one by the wayside. It may not be a very bad film but there just aren’t any really strong elements to it.

Overall 4/10

War of the Colossal Beast Review


It’s impressive that the first Colossal Man movie got a sequel but unfortunately this one isn’t quite as good. The decision to turn Glenn into a mindless monster was definitely an odd one and doesn’t work as effectively. Part of the fun in having a giant man is seeing him interact and how he adjusts to this. The first film may have been leading up into having him turn mindless but going all the way with it was definitely a big mistake.

The movie follows Glenn’s sister Joyce who has been trying to locate him for a while now. It’s actually a bit of an odd choice right off the bat. Why aren’t we still following his fiancé Carol? I suppose the real life reason would be that they couldn’t get the same actress but I feel like that wouldn’t have been a big deal. Either way Joyce functions in pretty much the same way as it’s her turn to play detective this time. She does well in tracking Glenn’s possible whereabouts until she actually gets to the right place.

Ultimately there isn’t a whole lot she can do to stop him but she gets the government on the trail so that they can capture him. Unfortunately a cure will be difficult as always so they are basically delaying the inevitable as he is still a big threat that could hurt just about anyone. The government’s main liaison this time is Mark and he makes it clear that the army will take care of Glenn if he poses a threat. So getting them involved was a bit of a risk but it was still Joyce’s only realistic option. Otherwise Glenn was already being a threat anyway.

Again this is weakened by the fact that he is so mindless now though. He can only just roar endlessly the whole time so there is no chance for dialogue or anything like that. He’s just completely lost his mind and that doesn’t make for an interesting villain. You could only pull that off if this was a creature with a really cool design, but a giant human? No shot at making that work out, it’s just not in the cards. Also I thought the design wasn’t as good. In this film they try to show that he’s deteriorated a bit due to the accident from last time but also the radiation. So now part of his skull is showing at all times and so he looks rather beat up. It’s more on the gruesome angle than actually looking really cool though.

The other characters are decent enough. Mark does well in his role and he seems like a good guy. There is a limit to how much he can actually do here but at least he is trying the whole time. It would have been easy to have just ditched Glenn to his fate but he is actually trying to make things work out for everyone. Then you have Dr. Carmichael who is like pretty much every other doctor in these old films. He seems reasonable enough but can’t really work miracles.

I actually liked this old guy who appeared at the start of the film as his driver got scared by Glenn so he had to find the kid. This was really just a way to kick the film off so he doesn’t have a big role or anything but I liked his energy. The guy was determined to get his money back and sue if needed. The kid who got scared was more on the annoying side. I thought all the scenes of him being too afraid to talk at all were really overblown. The movie just had a super slow start as a result and once we got to move past that it was for the best.

The movie still has good writing like the first film but around the board it’s just a bit weaker. The pacing only gets good after the opening scenes and of course Glenn is a big step down with how mindless he is. I definitely would have liked for him to have still had his character. Then the cast as a whole would be a bit weaker although it’s close. So with all of that going against it, there was never any chance that the movie could have beat the original. That wasn’t going to happen but I would still call it a good movie. If you ignore that the first one exists, then it is a perfectly serviceable title.

It doesn’t do anything special but it makes no big mistakes. There’s no moment where you’re really shaking your head here and that’s the positive point of making what I would call a very safe film. You’re not taking any risks or putting yourself out there so the floor is stable but the ceiling may just not be as high. You’re not going to score an 8 with this approach but you won’t likely score a 4 either. It just puts you in an area with smaller variety.

As a final note, it’s a little hard to believe that the Colossal Man was able to hide for so long though. Again, remember that he is basically mindless and he is absolutely huge. Where was he hiding for so long? It was clearly long enough where the government thought he was dead and nobody believed the giant guy could be around. It just strikes me as unlikely that this guy could be slipping around, even if there weren’t security cameras and such back then. They probably should have just said he could shrink or something but of course then it would be a whole new movie. Only other option would be to have this film take place a little sooner, like the next day or something. Even then I question how he made the trip over to Mexico undetected unless he can breathe underwater.

Overall, You’ll enjoy this film if you’re up for a fairly generic creature feature film. This one does have more action than the first so you will actually get to see the Colossal Man in action. It helps to counter the fact that it loses in virtually all other areas. It has less replay value than the first one without a doubt but it still gets enough right to be worth a watch. It has actual flashbacks to the first movie which is nice for continuity. So because of that I would recommend watching the first title before this one. They may be good as stand alone adventures but it still feels like you would get the added boost by watching the first one before this. It may make you end up comparing them a lot but that will just have to be unavoidable here.

Overall 6/10

The Amazing Colossal Man Review


It’s time for a creature feature film of sorts even though there isn’t actually a Kaiju here. The movie just falls into that kind of style and it works well. The movie’s very low key and slowly builds towards the end but so long as you’re fine with not really seeing the Colossal Man get any action for a while then you’re going to be in for a good time here.

The movie starts with Glenn and the rest of the army awaiting a big army test. They’re testing a powerful bomb/weapon so nobody is to get close. Unfortunately, Glenn notices that there are some civilians in the line of fire after a plane goes down so he dashes over but gets hit by the radiation. This causes Glenn to start growing to an incredible size. The plus is that this heals all of his burns like a sort of regeneration but the downside is that his heart isn’t growing fast enough and he’s also turning insane. Is there any way to save Glenn or is this game over for him?

His fiancé Carol tries her best to help Glenn out but the main issue in the film is that there isn’t really a way out. There is seemingly no cure that will work in time and in the meanwhile Glenn is in constant pain. I think that’s part of what makes this one of the roughest trials for a lead here. It’s a pretty hopeless situation even if he wasn’t going crazy. Of course if he could have helped them that would be great but he lasted a while before cracking and it wasn’t really doing much.

I can’t say that I liked Glenn much by the end though. Even if turning giant was part of the issue, it would have been good if he could have stayed strong. Maybe have the government start acting shady which is what gets him to start being a little paranoid and you go from there. It would definitely help him out as a main character and make him more sympathetic towards the end.

There are two main adults on the government side in Paul and Eric. They try to help manage the Glenn situation but I wouldn’t say they do a terrific job. Part of why Glenn cracks is because nobody is really telling him much. Sure, they do tell him stuff like they’re looking into the issue and all that but nothing concrete. After a while it’s clear to him that they’re leading him on and I don’t think he’s totally wrong about that. Any cure would be a longshot and might not even make it in time.

I also think using a circus tent as a base probably wasn’t the best idea to his already damaged psyche. Surely there could have been other large areas to use that wouldn’t have been quite as insulting to the guy. If the film could have used any extra boost though, it’s that I wouldn’t have minded seeing the Colossal Man destroy more buildings and such. The actual destruction is kept fairly minimal probably so the film wouldn’t make Glenn seem too irredeemable.

This is also probably the kind of film that would be more difficult to execute in a modern setting. As the film is low key it can only really work with the dialogue being up to par. Of course a modern film would likely add a lot of action which would make the point moot as that’s another way to succeed but if you’re going to do this through pure dialogue then you need the old way of speaking like in this film. Then with that you’re all set for action.

Of course a modern element that could work would be for Carol to have a more active role in the story. Something beyond just walking around and asking for questions about Glenn. Not that she didn’t do a good job with this but it’s still a more passive role as opposed to her knocking out some guards to find him or something like that. I suppose it’s nice that the government wasn’t evil in the end this time though.

I absolutely would not want the job of feeding the Colossal Man though. I was even a bit surprised that the guy escaped with his life since it really seemed like he could be squashed at any second. Glenn was definitely not playing around by this point and was pretty much all gone. The ending underscores why he was ultimately not a huge thread though. At the end of the day unless you’re bullet proof then there is only so much damage that you can pull off. In a way the government could have stopped him at any time and you the viewer knows it.

Overall, The Amazing Colossal Man is a pretty good film. I wouldn’t call it amazing or anything but it gets the job done and follows the classic formula of a creature feature. In fact it’s so direct that there isn’t a whole lot to discuss compared to other films. You could probably guess most of the story beats just from the title without even watching the film. The writing is solid and the character cast is good which makes for a solid combo. The movie goes by quickly and has a good amount of replay value. You’ll definitely want to go into this expecting more of a drama film than an action one but as long as you go in with that mindset then you’ll be all set.

Overall 7/10

Grease 2 Review


Sometimes a movie will at least start out good and you see the potential slowly get squandered away but this time you could really say that the movie was no good right from the start. It immediately feels very weak and is just ripping ideas off of the first one. It’s not subtle about doing this either and so it’s just weaker than the first film in every way along with a historically bad song thrown into the mix. You’ll definitely want to skip that one as quickly as possible.

The film starts off with everyone heading back to school and a lot of singing has taken place. It’s been a while since the events of the first film but things are more or less the same with how you have the gang of guys and the gang of girls who are all supposed to pair up. Well, Stephanie is through with this and breaks up with her counterpart. She wants to be with someone dashing, someone who is like a true mystery man. That seems like it’ll be difficult though and then a new transfer student named Michael appears.

He’s a nice guy who he doesn’t quite fit in with the gangsters. The thing is that he likes Stephanie and wants to find some way to get her to appreciate him. She doesn’t give him a chance normally so then he decides to become a superhero. The cool rider of her dreams. All it takes is a leather jacket and a helmet to cover his face. Now Stephanie can’t get enough of him. Should he keep up the deception so that they can get married or will he have to come clean and risk it all?

There’s not a ton of plot here though as that setup is interrupted a whole lot by a ton of random songs and characters messing around. There’s almost no focus here and as I mentioned earlier, a lot of the gags and such are directly ripped from the first film. This one doesn’t have any real originality and it shows. The songs are also much weaker. In particular the reproduction song has to stand out as one of the worst songs of all time. I don’t recall hearing a song in any movie that was quite this bad.

The scene goes on forever too and goes well beyond the point of the teachers appearing to look incompetent. This guy should have been fired right out of the gate. The principal also doesn’t really get any big hype moments the way that she did in the sequel. She is around for this movie but doesn’t do a whole lot beyond just glaring and standing around. Feels like a true waste of her character in the meantime. Of course that’s basically the case for anyone here. Frankie returns but her role is so small that she may as well not have returned. She really doesn’t add anything to the story.

Right off the bat the romance is really bad here. Stephanie is super mean to Michael throughout the entirety of the film because he’s just too nice and she wants someone who’s a delinquent. It’s quite telling that she fell for Michael in his alter ego form immediately. That’s because the romance is super shallow. She’s not falling in love with the person but the ideal/mask behind the guy. Nah that’s not a good look for her at all. So by the end you definitely aren’t rooting for them to get together.

I think the film could have done something good with her character but it was squandered. She just comes across as too mean. Also, one of the big drama moments here is that she is given an ultimatum that if she won’t date one of the other gang members then she has to stop wearing the gang clothes. She seems sad about this…but just toss it? It should be a no brainer since she has already decided that she doesn’t like any of those guys. Being in the gang never seemed too important to her either so the whole thing was a bit odd.

As for Michael, well I’ll give him some props for being determined but should he really want to try to date someone who can’t stand him? The level of aggression here was really something so even if he can trick her into liking a different form of his, it doesn’t really seem like a good deal at all. He would always have to be on guard and even if later on she liked the normal form as well, you may have doubts on if she really likes him or just the superhero form.

There’s just a lot of reasons not to care for the romance. I suppose at least you will care more about them than the side characters who really have nothing to do here. It seems like after the main characters left in the first film, the gangs have gotten extremely weak now. It’s actually played for laughs how they now get picked on by a rival gang. Come on, that’s disgraceful. So they’re getting picked on while in their own home turf and they are still more determined to stop the cool rider than the other gang? That’s why they will never be in first place, their priorities are all mixed up.

Michael certainly learned fast too since he was able to easily out speed both gangs and pull off incredible jumps. This guy was a living legend after only a day or two. At least this will buy the rest of the gang some time to finally get good but it’s not like any of them are likable enough to root for anyway. Then in the girl gang the only one with a big role is one character who wants people to stop treating her like a kid. In a better movie this could have led to a lot of very emotional moments and big character beats but in this movie it was just there as fluff. It ultimately doesn’t get all that important as the movie just dashes to the end.

If you take away the musical aspect then this could be better but unlike the first film I wouldn’t even say there is a whole lot of potential here. At least the first film had quality dialogue, an interesting setup, and just a lot of promise. This one wasn’t trying hard to make a plot right from the start so even if you take away the awful songs, it’s not like it would be positive. I would still take that as a consolation though.

Overall, Grease 2 is one of those ultimately lazy films that figures it can strike lightning twice without having to actually do anything. It’s just an extremely weak movie all around and it’s probably for the best that they hadn’t made a third one right after this. I would say to stay far away from this one. Even if you’ve seen the original and liked it, you’ll want to avoid Grease 2. It’s possible that liking the original would actually make this one feel even weaker since you’ll have seen what it could have been like.

Overall 2/10

Grease Review


After all these years I have finally seen Grease. This one is known as a fairly iconic film so it’s about time that I got to really see what it was about. I wouldn’t actually put it in as one of the better comedy films for me as it does have a number of weak points. The weaknesses of the musical genre are always right around the corner after all.

The movie starts by showing us how Danny and Sandy became good friends by spending a summer together. It was all fun and all for them but eventually they had to go back to school. When Sandy bumps into him there she is thrilled at first but it quickly becomes apparent that he is going to pretend that he doesn’t really know her. Danny desperately wants to fit in with the local tough guys and so now he may even choose them over her. Will this romance pull through or was it doomed right from the start?

At the very least it should have been doomed with Danny giving Sandy the cold shoulder like that. He put her in quite the spot and it takes almost all of the film until he’s finally ready to stand up for her in public. That’s way too long and she went through a lot before that period. I would say that Sandy could have stuck up for herself much. Basically her gimmick is that she’s the super nice, but a bit naïve character who doesn’t break the rules and doesn’t really notice when others are making fun of her.

This gets a bit tricky since everyone at school tends to be rather mean. Eventually Sandy gets the hang of this but I would say she didn’t really need to change. Just break out of those friendship groups if the others are just going to be so harsh the whole time and keep it moving. I wasn’t crazy about how this plot ended for her even if it does make for a fairly good twist near the end of the film. I can’t say that I really saw it coming so the movie managed to be a bit unexpected there.

I’m going to be a lot harsher on Danny though because you could argue that most of everything that happened here was his fault. He could have absolutely just been nice to Sandy when she showed up. The whole school custom of his clique only being allowed to date members of the other clique just feels outdated anyway. Danny has enough pull within the group too where I really don’t think they would have pulled anything if he had gone that route. Even if they did, he needs to be able to choose Sandy over anyone else. If he doesn’t then how strong can the romance be?

The romance in Grease is really weak and that’s one big element that huts the movie since romance is one of the main genres. It’s hard to really root for any of the characters to get together. Instead it might be better for them to break things off if the romance itself isn’t their top priority. There are also some backup romances for the side characters and I wouldn’t say any of theirs are all that good either.

Rizzo gets a full sub plot where she thinks that she is pregnant and it changes things. She went from basically being the mean leader of her gang to everyone talking behind her back. The film tries to turn this into a very sympathetic plot but it doesn’t work perfectly well due to how much she was messing around. It’s not like issues in other films where they weren’t very preventable or the main character had no way of dodging them. This problem she basically caused all on her own so that’s not a good look.

She was also just way too mean to Sandy the whole time so it’s not even like she was generally nice. The only character who was actually fair to Sandy the whole time was Frenchy. Frenchy isn’t a very interesting character or anything but at least she wasn’t a bully so I’ll give her props there. All of Danny’s friends were fairly judgmental and not too smart. It’s great that they all get along but if they were really good friends then Danny shouldn’t have felt so pressured to act behind their backs.

I did like the principal though. She made sure to run a very tight ship and wasn’t going to just let these guys run all over her. In fact the bullies pretty much don’t dare to talk back to her. It’s clear that she works hard in establishing dicipline here and manages to pull it off so big kudos to her. Her assistant isn’t very smart and tends to hold her back but I suppose you can’t win them all.

There are a lot of songs here as this is a musical but for the most part I wouldn’t say they’re really my style. There was a song where the characters are jumping on cars and running around that was fairly decent though. This does continue the tradition though where musicals tend to have songs that don’t hold up against films that just happen to have songs. It’s like when you build a film around the concept then the writers run out of good songs or something.

Grease is really at its best when it’s focusing on the comedy aspect of things. A character seeing a ghost in the sky for example was a much more effective scene than any of the romance ones. I suppose I liked seeing Danny try to join different clubs. That made for a fun subplot and the gym teacher was really impressive. Somehow he was able to balance being knowledgeable about every sport while still having time to walk the main character around. Now that’s what I call impressive.

There are also small visual jokes that tend to be fun like the characters all combing their hair in unison. The writing is good for the most part and the movie never drags on. It can be entertaining but does so amidst an unlikable cast of characters and a very weak set of romances. If the film had focused on the story a bit more and cut out the musical element then this probably would have jumped up a bit more. I can’t say that there is real replay value to be had here. There are definitely a lot of moments with potential and the film can be entertaining but it never stays that way quite long enough for me to call this a good film.

Overall, I can now say that I’ve seen one of the all time greats even if I didn’t quite like it as much as most. I’ll have a review for the sequel up shortly though so be ready for that. Often times a sequel can have a hard time living up to the original but in this case since I wasn’t a big fan of it, things could be a bit different. At least that’s what I figured but I won’t spoil the surprise. After all that review will be published on the same day as this review. If you really like romance movies and musicals then you’ll probably enjoy it but otherwise you can do a lot better.

Overall 4/10

Peppermint Review

This review is of the TV-14 edited version of the film. All thoughts below should be addressed as such as a review of the unedited version would be more negative

Peppermint is definitely one of those films that is very much a basic thriller. There’s not a whole lot going on here beyond the main character getting her big revenge but that’s exactly what you’re expecting here. The film lives up to the premise it’s advertising so that’s always a good thing. In the end it can be a bit violent as you can guess but ultimately I’d say it’s a fairly decent thriller that holds up well.

The movie starts off with Riley destroying a villain so then we get a flashback to set this up. Her husband was recruited to get into a dangerous gig but he declined the offer. The main problem here is that the news of his declining didn’t make the rounds in time so the mob leader quickly destroys him as well as his family to make a statement. Riley was able to survive the bullet wounds though and after seeing how the justice system was bought out by the crooks, decides to handle this on her own. At the end of the day there is nobody else that she can trust but herself to get the job done here. Now it’s a race to destroy everyone who has wronged her, the courts, the gangsters, etc. She will keep moving forward until she has destroyed her enemies!

There isn’t a very large cast here as most of the villains are bumped off fairly quick. I would say the only important villain here would be the actual leader at the top of the charts. He’s not someone who should be taken too lightly at all. Diego is his name and he actually does a good job of ruling the mob. The guy rules by fear to the point where he murders people just for thinking about betraying him. That’s certainly an effective way to
stay in charge and also prevent more people from getting ideas.

At the end of the day once you get past the fear then he’s just another guy. In fact we even see the mob that owns this mob and it shows how he’s still just a big fish in a small pond. I suppose if we ever get a sequel to this it could be about Riley going after those guys next. The movie really fleshes out the world around it pretty well so there’s a lot you could do after this. To an extent Riley even feels like a bit of an Anti-Hero. We see that she has ended crime in a whole area and is protecting people even outside of her quest for revenge.

She helps a kid by beating up his alcoholic father and just generally makes the world a safer place. Riley isn’t above murdering her opponents of course so she’s not a full hero but definitely a figure that will give the villains some real pause here. They absolutely do not want to mess with her. Riley went off the grid for a few years to hone her fighting abilities and this seems to have really paid off big time. At this point she is able to out fight just about anyone in her way even if they are armed.

Riley is a fun lead character. She goes about her business very directly and doesn’t drag out the deaths or anything like that. She quickly lets them know why she is about to destroy them and then does it. It’s all a very straight forward approach which shows that she means business. Also she did try going through the legal system first. It just didn’t work so she was then forced to seek other avenues which made a lot of sense. Once the mob has bought out the court then it’s clear that justice won’t be coming.

Then we’ve got the main cop Beltran who does well here. He’s definitely not thrilled about getting mixed up with the gang since everyone who messes with them tends to disappear but he does want to see true justice get accomplished and goes past that fear. He also helps the film execute a really solid ending which really helps wrap everything up nicely. A bad ending can really and I mean really hurt for a film like this so getting around that was absolutely crucial. This ending is basically perfect so I was satisfied.

I wouldn’t say there are any big issues with the film either aside from some violence. As a revenge thriller like this you can absolutely bet that people are getting shot and destroyed but by and large it avoids being too excessive about the whole thing. What helps is that we mainly follow Riley as she destroys everyone and don’t get nearly as many scenes of the villains popping each other off. It’s a pretty big distinction because that’s usually when the films tend to get a bit more gratuitous with that.

I also always enjoy the classic trope of one person launching a full war against the entire villain empire. Just give her a few months of training and skills and now nobody can stop Riley. Is it super realistic? Perhaps not but it’s definitely always fun to watch. She also got a whole lot of intel to be able to locate everyone and take them out at the ideal times. Riley didn’t just panic and jump into action but planned everything out carefully and it paid off for her.

Overall, Peppermint is a pretty good film. I dare say it was better than I had been expecting. If you told me that this was a comic book origin story I would have believed you. It’s very much got those Punisher vibes at the ready. The fights are good and there is a lot of room to make a sequel out of this. I would definitely recommend this if you want a pretty intense action thriller. I wonder if revenge thrillers go for one word titles on purpose. Salt, Taken, Peppermint, Faster, etc. Maybe it’s a subliminal message that the film is about to be nonstop action with quick pacing.

Overall 6/10

Merrily We Live Review


Now this is a film that’s really bonkers right from the start. You’ve got a whole lot of people in a big house trying to stop the madness from continuing. The film never takes itself too seriously and just embraces how wild it all is which I would say works well. It’s just a full comedy that will get you some good laughs.

The film starts off by showing us that the main family has been robbed. The family can really blame Emily for this as she has a habit of inviting people in to live with them without doing any big background checks or research. At heart she just wants to do the right thing and help everyone out but this tends to backfire real badly. Now she has decided to finally stop doing this but when a guy named Rawlins walks in she decides to take in one more person. The rest of the family is convinced that this guy will be trouble though and are determined to kick him out. Will they be able to claim victory here?

So right off the bat I do have to agree with the family that Emily needs to stop this. It’s great to try and get someone back on their feet but just bringing in any random person off the street to live in her home is a bit too much. Aside from this being an obvious safety hazard, you may just get robbed like what happened here. It also seems as if this is not the first time that this has happened. The main issue is that Emily has a very short memory and also gets lost in her thoughts. Half the time she forgets her own memories and so the whole movie she just seems really confused.

It’s all part of the gag of course but as a result I would have to put her as one of the weaker characters in the film. She just gets everyone into trouble the whole time. Meanwhile Rawlins is a standout character. He takes everything in stride and always finds a way to turn the situation to his advantage. To his credit he even tries to stay out of trouble but often it is just outside of his control so from there on he just does his best. By the end of the film it’s clear that he has to be the most clever character.

It’s easy to root for him too since it’s not like he tried to be in this position. He just happened to be in the right place at the right time. Meanwhile you have his rival Grosvenor who is the main butler there and naturally wants Rawlins gone. He’s the kind of guy who wants absolute power so being told that this new guy will be working under him doesn’t go over so well. Unfortunately for Grosvenor he is always on the losing side here. He just can’t keep up with Rawlins at all from wit to toughness.

There’s one or even multiple times where Rawlins calls Grosvenor out on his challenges and the guy quickly backs down. It has to be rough being the boss but knowing that the underling can beat you at any time. You don’t feel too bad for him by the end since Grosvenor’s reasonable concerns just turn into straight paranoia by the end. If he had stopped to try and get along with Rawlins then things could have just gone a whole lot better for him.

As for the rest of the family, they all get some stuff to do as well but there’s almost not enough time for all of them to get a really meaningful role. First up you have Henry who is the father of the household and he isn’t thrilled about Rawlins either. He doesn’t have much more luck than Grosvenor though as Rawlins is just always one step ahead and ready to stop all of his attacks. Rawlins’ final attack involving a phone call was just perfect for him because it provided the guy with absolute safety.

Then you’ve got Jerry who initially takes a hard stance against Rawlins as well but his charms eventually win her over so that’s the end of that. You can forget about her boyfriend as well, now that guy is absolutely doomed right from the jump. Just seeing him for 2 seconds is enough for you to know how that plot is going to end. Marion also ends up falling for Rawlins because the guy just has too much flair and personality.

I suppose with this group all just living their lives as always with their routines, it probably felt nice to have someone just shake things up the whole time. Rawlins does add a whole lot to the dynamic so it’s good to see him here. The film really nailed his character here which was important. How much you enjoy the film will absolutely be determined by how much you like him as a main character and how you enjoy the family. They’ve all got their quirks and all so if you find them annoying then that could hurt the film.

I’d say it works though and it all goes down to how the film is super aware of how absurd the whole thing is. It doesn’t hold anything back with the characters all being crazy and this just escalates as the film goes on to the point where Emily can’t even recognize her own worker. (Rawlins) Despite the guy not even wearing a disguise at all. You just have to roll with it all and then it just works.

Overall, Merrily We Live is a good film. It’s just crazy enough to turn a super ordinary plot into something fun. There’s even a little scare for some of the characters when someone is thought to be dead for a few minutes there. As long as you have a few good laughs during the film then it will have succeeded. It’s all rather fast and there aren’t any bad characters here so that gets a thumbs up from me. It may have a little less replay value than some other comedy films but on your initial watch you should definitely be all set.

Overall 7/10