Kubo plays the Two Strings featured review 

KUBO AND THE TWO STRINGS – His Guitar Gently Weeps

Kubo and the Two Strings is an obscenely beautiful technical masterpiece, and may be the most incredible achievement yet in stop motion animation. While there’s obviously a layer of digital assistance rounding out the magic of Laika’s lively physical figures, the blend is wonderfully seamless. But that’s not all, because Kubo also boasts the best story yet of Laika’s impressive filmography. Kubo is about legacy – how it is shaped not only by our actions and values¬†but through our families and the stories we leave behind. These themes are bolstered…

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The BFG - Friendship review 

THE BFG: Too Big For it’s Own Good

The BFG comes to us courtesy of Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment and Disney. The film is every bit as full of whimsy that a pairing ¬†between these two would suggest. Based on the novel by Roald Dahl (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory), the film follows a 10-year-old orphan named Sophie, who gets kidnapped by an otherwise Big and Friendly Giant, and finds herself with problems altogether unfamiliar to those from her previous life. Let’s focus on the good first. The acting in this movie is delightful. Ruby Barnhill, whose name…

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Lothar Diving into Combat in Warcraft review 

WARCRAFT – As “Not Terrible” as Game Adaptations Come

Movies based on video games are never “good”. Often they’ve been “godawful” (Super Mario Bros.), with a few falling into the so-bad-they’re-good category (DOA: Dead or Alive). The best they ever get is “okay” (Resident Evil), with the vast majority falling into the “bland” (Prince of Persia) or “gimmicky” (Final Fantasy) categories. So it may surprise you when I say that I really enjoyed Warcraft, While it certainly has no shortage of “bland” elements, and stumbles over a lot of chances it had to excel, I think it’s about as close as I’ve seen to a video game adaptation being “good” without actually earning that qualifier. It certainly has enough standout qualities for me to call it “above average”. As The Powerwaifu so aptly put it, “I wouldn’t kick it out of bed.” 

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Gods of Egypt - Horus and Bek review 

GODS OF EGYPT – aka Pop Stars of Narnia

As a student of film, GODS OF EGYPT is fascinating… fascinating in a “How in the hell did this get greenlit with a $140 million budget?” kind of way. Let’s set aside the film’s quality for a moment and just wonder at that. The film is not based off of any pre-existing franchise (not even a shitty YA novel), has no headlining stars with box-office draw, a director (Alex Proyas: I, RobotDark City) with an uneven track record, and yet SOMEHOW this film got greenlit by a Lion’s Gate subsidiary with the budget of a minor Marvel film and the assumption that they had a replacement franchise for Hunger Games on their hands.

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Smaug greedily eyeing a Hobbit snack review 

THE HOBBIT: THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG – A Charming Adventure is Buried in Another Three Hours of Slog

However much you liked the first Hobbit film, you will probably like THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG a little bit more. If the first movie did it, the second does it more, and with a bit more payoff. Unfortunately, if the first movie did something poorly, it did more of that too. Among the film positive qualities: generally excellent acting, phenomenal cinematography, fun fight choreography, Smaug’s design and animation, and realizing that Legolas is basically the elven equivalent of a racist redneck jerk. Sadly as THE HOBBIT tries to out-epic LORD…

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Smurfette+gets+naughty+with+Gargamel review 

THE SMURFS 2 – Surprisingly Watchable Family Entertainment

So… THE SMURFS 2. Finally saw it put together after working on it for months, and it turns out… it’s less cringeworthy than I’d imagined! The film is obviously written for young children, but the majority of the silly humor was actually fairly amusing. (Hank Azaria tears it up as Gargamel). Aside from the kitschy pop music, the film even more surprisingly comes across as legitimately heartfelt. In a clever exploration of Smurf lore, the story revolves around the (sometimes) unrequited love of step-parents, and then delves rather meaningfully into…

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Thorin+Oakenshield+taking+over+the+whole+damn+movie review 

THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY – An Unexpected Letdown

Pictured: the chief protagonist from THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY. Bilbo is featured, of course. He’s even introduced as the film’s narrator, but I was shocked by how little the story was told from his perspective. Rather the filmmakers opt for Gandalf or Thorin, the characters already versed in adventuring. This, unfortunately, strips the story of most of the book’s humor and sense of wonder (something far more present in the LOTR trilogy). Many bits of the book are re-written to completely change the nature of the adventure into something…

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