Avengers Assemble (2012)

Rating 12
Length 2h23
Release 26.4.2012
Director Joss Whedon
About Nick Fury is compelled to launch the Avengers Initiative when Loki poses a threat to planet Earth. His squad of superheroes
Moon: no moon sighting
Where to Watch: Disney Plus
Trailer:


First Thoughts

This was the film in the franchise that truly got me into Marvel. The second Joss Whedon was signed on, my fan-girl self was propped up like a meerkat waiting for any and all scraps made available in the run up to the release. Back then his shitty side was still a cloaked rumour and this outing was a hit.
Then Ultron wasn’t so good and as Whedon left, he made sure he wouldn’t be asked back. Now we know he’s truly a douchebag and slime ball. I think I’ve been stalling my rewatch of this, thinking the film would be tainted.

The Good

  • This has one of the smoothest opening to a Marvel movie to date. Which is even more impressive when you consider the sheer character count involved. It helps that the dialogue helps with those transitions. It’s all rather clever as it also drip feeds the information regarding the Tesseract to the audience too.
  • Agent Coulson is the MVP for me in this film. He’s the heart, the comedy and the geek in all of us. Clark Gregg plays it perfectly and you really feel the weight of his loss after his intermittent appearances so far.
  • The film has the DNA of Whedon; his pop culture references, smart and quick dialogue and wicked action sequences. This film works so well because it gives the audience what it wants: the answer to the ultimate question “who would win in a fight between x & y?”
    The best signature scene would have to be right after Nat has worked out Banner is Loki’s play. The group’s in-fighting had been perfected by Whedon on Buffy and this scene works like a charm.
  • I love that we finally have a Bruce Banner that works. Mark Ruffalo gives us the ideal Banner that blends the intellect, temperament and regret into a believable character.
    We also have to give credit to Ruffalo for The Hulk too. Through motion capture, we’re able to get the balance, or rather imbalance, between the two egos. If we are ever going to see Avengers fight with each other, you need to have The Hulk in the mix.
  • I absolutely love the film score and the introduction of the Avengers theme music. Alan Silvestri has composed many iconic themes, but this has to be my favourite. Not only is it well used here, it is something that has appeared in many other MCU films.

The Bad

  • I do not like the scene in which Rogers hands Fury money. Mainly because it’s clear Rogers has been debriefed by Fury, so knows who he is. So other than it being a racist stab at the ‘man out of time’ aspect of Cap, I can’t see it’s purpose.

The Ugly

  • Coulson is the reason I have trust issues. Obviously this is not so much about this film, but things that came out after the fact. I cried when Coulson died. I saw Assemble in the cinema at least 6 times over the summer of 2012, and I cried every time.
    Then Agents of S.H.E.I.L.D came along and resurrected my favourite MCU character. Yes, on one hand, I was happy. However, it has implications. It makes any death in the MCU reversible. It takes away the importance of his death in this film upon a rewatch. It’s actually so problematic that there are debates about whether Agents of S.H.E.I.L.D is cannon.
    It also means I always second guess any other death that occurs in the universe. Loki’s timeline (even pre-tv show) further cements this emotional detachment. There’s a character much further down the line that I know I would have sobbed at their demise. However, I don’t trust that they’re really gone.

Final Thoughts

Still as enjoyable as the first day I watched it. There’s enough other people involved to be able to see it as a brilliant film without the skank of Whedon.

That’s My Boy (2012)

Rating 15
Length 1h 56
Release 7.9.2012
Director Sean Anderson
About While still a teen himself, Donny (Adam Sandler) fathered a son, Todd (Andy Samberg), and raised him as a single parent. On Todd’s 18th birthday, Donny cut the youth loose. After years of estrangement, the older man shows up unexpectedly on the eve of his son’s wedding day, sending the young man’s life into a tailspin. Donny wants desperately to reconnect with Todd, but he must now deal with the repercussions of the bad parenting he exhibited in the past.


The Good?

  • It eventually finishes. Eventually.
  • I laughed. Twice. That was it.

The Very Bad

  • Andy Samberg is completely wrong for the character he’s playing. Its more for the likes of Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Josh Gad or Jonah Hill. Samberg didn’t quite pull off the meek, timid and uncool look so his evolution doesn’t really appear.
  • The Sandler voice makes an appearance. I hate it. There’s no need for it and Sandler is better than that. It’s an indication that his character is going to be stupid, but it’s just shit.
  • Some of the jokes are just really, really bad. They’re at the expense of people who are lovely in the film and that just sucks.

The horrifically Ugly

  • The teacher-pupil relationship. Okay, my bad for not reading up on about the film before hand, but seriously?! Are we not done already with using rape (statutory in this case) for comedy. I’ve said it before, but films like this that capitalised on the comic relief of female sexual predators are so dangerous. As always, you put a woman deemed ‘unattractive’ by social standards and its no longer funny and everyone would be up in arms.
  • The Grandma cleaning up all the wank rags. There’s only one other film that’s made me physically throw up and that was the Saw movie that had people drown in an industrial vat of mulched pig carcases.
  • As if that’s not all bad enough, the final act reveals that Todd’s fiancé has been fucking someone else. The brother. Yes, this film decides sex with a minor is not gross enough, so adds incest to the mix.


Final Thoughts

Honestly, had it not been for Andy Samberg, I’d have never even given this the time of day. This is worse than Freddy Got Fingered and should be avoided at all costs.

Film Review: Seven Psychopath (2012)

Rating: 15
Length: 1hr 50
Release: 5.12.2012
Dir: Martin McDonagh
About: Marty, an aspiring screenwriter working on a screenplay, unwillingly gets involved in an underworld crime when his strange friends abduct a dangerous hoodlum’s pet.


The Good

  • Seven Psychopaths is an early Quentin Tarantino movie without the pretentious attempt to be an auteur. The dialogue isn’t as contrived or forced and it’s actors certainly appear less stagnant.
  • It’s a solid cast and I was left with a wish to see Colin Farrell and Sam Rockwell teamed up in another movie. There’s something about the partnership that works on screen.

The Bad

  • There’s little that distinguishes what is part of Marty’s screenplay and what is part of the actual film. It does mean this isn’t a casual watch and can feel quite taxing to keep up, much in the same way Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang needs you to actively focus for every second.

The Ugly

  • I feel as if it was meant to be funnier than I found it. Perhaps I just wasn’t feeling it today, but I really found the overly visual body count to outweigh any humour that could be found within. I did laugh at times, but I’m not sure laughing like a 12 year old every time Sam Rockwell utters the word ‘c**t’ actually counts.

Final Thoughts

So this is essentially John Wick without the hand to hand combat and way more talking. I enjoyed it more than I thought I would, but it’s not something I’ll rewatch any time soon.

Paranorman (2012)

Rating: PG

Length: 1Hr 32

Release: 14.9.2012

About: A misunderstood boy takes on ghosts, zombies and grown-ups to save his town from a centuries-old curse.


Treats

  • This is one of the best stop motion films I’ve watched. It’s a craft that brings with it a magical feel and Is perfect for the world of Paranorman.
  • The story is a charming Blithe Spirit and Sleepy Hollow mash-up. Despite the nods of familiarity, it does seem unique and a refreshing change to the typical zombie movie.
  • The character of Neil is delightful and adorable. His relationship with the solitary Norman is what makes the film. Well, that and him playing with his dead dog.

Tricks

  • For me, it spends a little too long developing the characters and the relationships than the story. For all of its cuteness and sweet message of forgiveness, it feels like it takes forever to get going.
  • Now, I was entertained by the visuals, but a lesser film would not have kept me engaged long enough to care about the plot.

Final Thoughts

A cute pallet cleanser to watch after some of the heavier horrors. Some Easter Eggs and adult humour that will go over little one’s heads.

Halloween Advent Reviews: Fun Size (2012)

Rating: 12a

Length: 1Hr 23

Release: 29.10.2012

About: Wren (Victoria Justice) is a high-school senior who can’t wait to get away from her dysfunctional family. On Halloween, Wren’s mother decides to go out with her much-younger boyfriend, leaving Wren to look after little brother Albert. When Wren is distracted by an invitation to the party of the year, Albert disappears into a sea of trick-or-treaters. Enlisting the aid of her sassy friend, April (Jane Levy), and two other classmates, Wren sets out on a frantic search for her sibling.


The Good

  • Johnny Knoxville does what Johnny Knoxville does best and it works well in this film even if he does seemingly come out of nowhere. He provides some laughs and gives the film a semblance of a plot for the second half.
  • There’s a wonderful scene between the brother and sister towards the end of the film that I actually wish the film had played on a little more. It provides the film with a nice nod to problems kids their age may face.
  • The little kid, Albert, is a wonderful little shit. Being a selective mute is an interesting choice and while it’s not a fully form plot point, it gives him that ‘baby on the run’ persona seen in Baby’s Day Out. His costume is ace and I love the situations he finds himself in.

The Bad

  • It’s not very festive. Which is strange, because every scene is plastered with pumpkins. It lacks a certain tone that seems to be present in a movie about autumn’s favourite holiday.
  • Thomas Middleditch is his Sillicon Valley ‘Richard’ self in this. So much so his character and story is nauseating. That gut feeling of wanting to reach into the film and punch the fuck out of him feels like a regular thing when I see him on screen, but it doesn’t half distract from the film. I’ll leave that to you to decide if it’s a good or bad thing.

The Ugly

  • Can you really call yourself a ‘family fun’ movie when you have more than four pedophile jokes? Imagine if they made another Paddington movie that employs Jimmy Saville jokes and has a Gary Glitter soundtrack and you’ve got this movie. The pedophile jokes range from the tongue in cheek to the out right wrong “hey, what I’m doing is 100% legal” says the Spider-man clad grandpa trick or treating with the kids.
  • Seriously, the film doesn’t really know who it’s audience is. It could have quite easily been a American Pie or Superbad, but instead it’s Ferris Buller by way of Adventures in Babysitting and Baby’s Day Out with weird sex references.
  • The mature humour clashes with the ‘family’ nature the film claims to be going for. From middle aged widow stopping her daughter from going to a party to bone her 26 year old boyfriend, to Wren’s best friend almost killing a cat because she ‘Naired her ass’ and the fumes put the kitty into a coma. Not to mention an oversized robot chicken that humps the back of the car. It’s all just a little much.

Final Thoughts (trick or treat?)

It says it all that Nickelodeon made the film to go on to ban it from being aired on their own channel. The biggest issue is that in terms of it being a film watched in the build up to Halloween, it does not do its job.

It’s a nasty trick and not something I’ll rush to rewatch.