Nothing can top how dreadful the plot was though. The movie combines tropes and falls into traps continuously right up until the end. At the very beginning, characters are introduced but are rarely in the film. It's like how they put Brian Cranston in the trailer for the first Godzilla movie and was killed off in 15 minutes. The main characters are a group of people that don't show up until all of the exposition has been laid out. They rival the human villain who ends up wanting to destroy the world because humans are a disease killing the planet. The story is embroiled in lazy writing and the lowest common denominator ideas, allowing the audience to turn off their brains and watch colors flash on
The movie also tries to have comedic moments peppered throughout to keep the tone light. This doesn't work in the first half of the film as no on in my theater even chuckled. Once Godzilla is introduced the humor does start to land, but for that first half its very cringey.
Ironically, since the visuals aren't that special, I can't recommend anyone seeing this in the theater. There is nothing exciting about this film and even less to be excited about for the next one. How can I believe that Kong has a chance against a lizard that shoots beams from his mouth? Yes, tons of characters needlessly die, the music pauses allowing for something shocking to happen, and some of these characters are returning for the third movie. It comes across as the laziest piece of entertainment put together, hoping big monsters fighting would carry the weight. Please never see this.
I was physically tired after watching the movie, it took so much effort to try and pay attention
the ominous tone of the original but works for the more upbeat version of the story. His impressive streak of musical numbers continues with each song retooled to be more fun. They are accompanied by unexpected visuals interwoven with classic iconography which makes each musical sequence pop. It helps that all the iconic songs are still here and keep most of the charm from the original. Apart from Smith, the other songs are good enough to stoke the nostalgia flames but never recapture the whimsical nature of those sequences.
Now here is where everything starts to fall apart. The first thing I noticed was the city of Agrabah didn't feel real. I could tell each little set was stitched together in wide shots to create a bigger city. The sets themselves didn't feel lived in as they were too clean. You can't show dirty homeless people begging on the street in the cleanest city ever seen in a desert, it just doesn't work. The off-putting feeling bleeds into the actors as well. The most egregious is sadly Aladdin, played by Mena Massoud. He doesn't work in this movie, and although by the end you get used to it, he always seems out-of-place. Its a completely different story when it comes to Marwan Kenzari who plays Jafar. It wasn't the acting that made his character more of a caricature but the direction that he was given. The plot gives Jafar a back story so he can seem more like a delusional evil man. It's weird how the live action version of the character seems more like a cartoon than the animated version does.
I also have to point out that this is the least Guy Ritchie film I have ever seen. Apart from the opening chase sequence, the film seems tamer than anything he has ever done before. It looks like the Disney executives had a lot of say in how the movie would come together. Even Ritchie's iconic speed ramp shots are used sparingly, only ever really used in completely CGI compositions. I don't know if all of this is good or bad, it was just weird going to see a Guy Ritchie film and not seeing his flare for most of it.
There were more technical things I noticed as well. The first time the audience is officially introduced to Princess Jasmine, the shot is out of focus. It's not a stylistic choice, you can't see anything in the center of the screen. It's a wide shot so it doesn't make sense for it to be blurry. Another thing I noticed was the new music. The score had new songs that used motifs from the original soundtrack. It was a little off-putting to hear the melody from A Whole New World that would transition into a completely different composition.
Overall, I am pretty indifferent to the movie. It shocked me that Will Smith is the best part of it. All of his musical numbers top all the others and even when he's not big and blue, he still makes it work. That is in stark contrast to the rest of his costars that either seem out of place or chew the scenery a little too hard. Then there's the story setup that makes key plot transitions clunky. The scene before A Whole New world does not make sense for that chain of events. Plus, I really wanted Jafar to turn into a giant snake like he does in the original, but they changed events so that wouldn't work. I guess if you need to watch something unoffensive this is a sure-fire bet. If you have access to the original, that will probably be a better time than this.
I think its a 6 instead of a 5 because I was entertained enough, though your mileage may vary
or the neon green of LEDs, he always finds an excuse to add it. On top of that is the great shot composition; there are many perfectly centered wide shots, mediums, and creative use of capturing the action taking place. It's honestly really great stuff that tells the audience that someone is paying attention to all the details.
Where the movie falls apart is pretty much everywhere else. When you go to see John Wick, the only things you should be expecting are action, a little bit of story, and more action. So when I say that I wanted to fall asleep during action sequences, this becomes a really big problem. For unknown reasons, the action is slowed down compared to the first two. Instead of the lightning-fast reaction time and beautifully choreographed fight sequences, all of that was replaced with slow and clunky movement. There were too many moments where good ideas were overused and I couldn't savor any of it. Instead of being delighted by what was going to come next, I could see it. Opponents slowly striking Keanu Reeves so he had time to block it or gags used one too many times. You never get to relive the feeling you from watching John Wick or Chapter 2 as he expertly takes out waves of enemies. Instead, it looks like everyone is letting him win, or more accurately, the choreography just wasn't as good.
There was also a really annoying use and lack of music. In a growing trend to be more like Steven Speilberg, the first three fight scenes do not include any music whatsoever. Relying solely on sound effects and grunts made by the combatants to fill out the sequence, this attempt at making the combat more "artsy" doesn't work. Even in later scenes when there is music to accompany the action, it doesn't make a difference since the choreography is so slow. There were also stretches of the movie where the same sound effects were used over and over which was really jarring. You have characters crashing through glass and hear the same glass sound over and over. Then in one fight, the wrong hit sound effect is used, making a slap sound like a full on punch.
Then comes the complete 180 that is the plot of Chapter 3 - Parabellum. It's obvious that there was a large story reduction in the sequel compared to the first, so this installment layers it on thick. It's not just that there are more story elements than before, its how they're used and which ones are thrust into the spotlight. Instead of John Wick being in a world that has a seedy underbelly with its own rules, the whole franchise becomes about that ecosystem. The garnish has become the meal as events in this movie happen just to set up things for a potential fourth installment. It seems characters are motivated by magic as people break rules established in the first two films as law. Logic and character development are thrown out of the window as John Wick scrambles to become a franchise of its own. It does do a good job fleshing out more of the world, but not for its own sake.
John Wick Chapter 3 - Parabellum is the most disappointing experience I've had in entertainment. One character says you have to kill what you love to protect it, which made The Last Jedi comparison much easier. It seems that a lot of critics really enjoyed this movie, and I've outlined some areas that it does excel in, but they are mistaken. This film is a string of disappointments that don't stop after you leave the theater. I don't want a sequel, I don't want to see it again, but I will watch the planned spinoff. The extra world building done here did a great job potentially setting that up and I am curious to see more of that setting. So you should not see this movie if you haven’t seen the other ones. You probably shouldn’t see it at all, but if you do plan on seeing it eventually, it might be better in a theater. The visuals are too gorgeous on a large screen to pass up… maybe.
With characters wasted, relationships thrown by the wayside, I am ready to do the same with this franchise
walking around and believed in the world that was being shown off. The VFX were great considering I felt like this was a real place filled with tons of animals. It also had major Zootopia vibes—that scene where Judy first arrives is almost recreated here. This film has all the production to be taken seriously; it's shot on film and people cared while making it; all of which lends itself for the audience to enjoy it.
The problems come down to almost everything else. The plot was paper-thin. It was structured like how a child would tell a story, with them constantly going, "and then, and then, and then". Which really bleeds into how the characters came across because they came off as pretty basic. The dialogue is to blame since in some scenes, you could tell actors were trying to do a good job with the material that they were given. It must have been the script considering the dialogue just sucked. It wasn't even that funny of a movie with all the best parts being in the trailer. Any attempt at a joke that wasn't already shown didn't even make me giggle.
For all the praise I gave the CGI for bringing Pokémon to life, there is a sequence hinted at in the trailer that was awful. The whole thing looked fake and I don't understand how you make a forest seem unbelievable. The music, while not super great, does incorporate sounds from the games as a motif which can't be picked up when watching the movie. Finally, Ryan Reynolds isn't just doing Deadpool without cursing, he adds a lighter touch and smooths out the edges in his delivery.
It comes off more like a kids movie than anything, which isn't bad, but foregoes any depth to keeps adults invested. As pure eye candy and entertainment, it works. If you follow the brand or have children, this could be a good enough experience to see this in the theater. If you have never even heard of Pokémon other than when people were standing in the streets with their phones, this is not for you. As someone who has had some contact with the property and is a sucker for good CGI, I was entertained enough.
I guess you can say that the movie wasn't electrifying
of fun is headed by Billie Lorde's character Gigi who represents the best of the humor in the movie. Her sporadic appearances are gags that never fail to delight. The laughs aren't always delivered though, as I found myself laughing less than most people in the theater. The comedic moments are mostly shock value or borderline slapstick comedy. The film was pretty hit or miss in its entirety as there were many moments of silence in the theater when the movie was trying to be funny. If you've seen the trailer some of the best jokes are in it and they don't have the same impact when you have already heard them.
The same mixed bag can be applied to the cinematography. There are some sequences that are superior to other entries in the genre but for the most part its all standard stuff.
All of that unbridled enthusiasm accounts for a lot, but it doesn't wash the movie of all of its sins. The series of events that make up the plot feel compartmentalized, creating a jarring effect. The story never felt natural - it was always a set up for the next gag. By the whole thing happen in one night, the number of events that occur seem impossible to happen. Each segment was a playhouse to have jokes in, rather than used to create a compelling narrative.
It's like someone got a blender and took the premise of 21 and Over and joined it with scenes from Eighth Grade and ideas from Lady Bird. How are you going to have a karaoke scene where a character bursts from their shell and a pool scene where they are searching to fit in; straight out of Eighth Grade. What about a strong friendship ruined by the pursuit of infatuation, in which a friend breaks a long-standing trust; Lady Bird. I've seen these story elements before and done better. It doesn't have the hard-hitting moments for me to take it seriously, it's too "fun" for that. Every chance Booksmart gets, it will try to make you laugh instead of having you feel something deeper.
By no stretch of the imagination is this a bad movie, it's just not the immense success people are pretending it to be. Other than most of the characters feeling more like caricatures, undercutting one of the most powerful scenes by cutting audio, and the ending straight out of a fantasy, Booksmart is a comedy that happens to tell a story about young people transitioning into the greater world. This is a safe rental when it comes to streaming, and considering the fact that no one went to go see Eight Grade, a film that won for best original screenplay at the Writers Guild Awards, I'm guessing most people aren't going to see this in theaters either.
Honestly not much special with this movie