Justice League (2017)

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They’re finally united after what feels like a well earned age…hang on a sec…nope…just over one year later. DC and it’s universe has the League team up big style and through some horrendous and expected barrage of CGI and more weak story I can surprisingly say it’s not a bad film. It’s not good…but not bad either.

With the world mourning the passing of Superman (Henry Cavill), Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) is trying to piece together a mystery. He hopes to bring a team together and with the help of Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), they manage to create a league for justice with The Flash (Ezra Miller), Aquaman (Jason Momoa) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher) to try and stop the havoc of an alien army leader.

In comparison to ‘Dawn of Justice’; this movie is fantastic but then that’s not exactly saying much because 2016’s setting up of the League was incredibly dull and dire. One of the main issues in this DCEU outing is the dialogue. In some places the writing by Joss Whedon and Chris Terrio is clunky and overly on the nose. They try to mix in lighter moments and you can tell former Marvel hand Whedon is behind this, but with the odd balance of gruff moodiness in the DC films with the quips, it just doesn’t quite work.

It isn’t solely the dialogue aspect, it’s within the story itself where there are next to zero stakes raised. There’s no gripping factor of worry to be had watching these characters do battle. Everyone in the league becomes so right for the fight they’re partaking in, that at no point did I feel that anyone would ever lose. It just becomes painfully convenient how characters fare to tackle the obstacles. The plot shuffles along from one moment to another as is the case with Zack Snyder films and it doesn’t sink in to really let tensions rise. Threat levels are at an all time low even though apparently it warrants Bruce needing to call a super-powered team together, the dispensing of villains throughout always seemed on the cards and more than anything, every way out was achieved in an easy manner.

The scene on Themyscira was one of the stand out moments and a couple of cool sequences can be found seeing The Flash with his electrically charged bursts, they’re entertaining but not as neatly executed as Quicksilver’s similarly slowed down scenes. Wonder Woman is my MVP and even though Snyder’s direction and the different writers thin her out and set her up for more male gaze than her standalone feature, she carries a great charisma and believable care for justice in this movie.

Amongst some slight hits and clear misses, this film and the DC franchise as whole seems obsessed in CGI. That’s not always a problem if handled correctly but they always go overboard and this movie has an abundance of chaotic computer generated imagery taking precedence. It looks OK in places but on the whole it’s cheap looking and everywhere, including the less than believable wonky face of Steppenwolf. Also battles are back lit like a Michael Bay special with excessive explosions and slow motion.

Affleck is alright again in his turn as the bulkier and moodier caped crusader. Gadot as mentioned brings a needed charm and likeability to the action and her guitar riffing moments of bad-assery are as cool as ever. Cavill does show up, I’m not calling that a spoiler because obviously he’d be there and he’s less boring than usual and in fact is the most interesting part of the film behind Gadot. Miller is clearly set up by the writers as the comedic relief and he delivers the majority in a convincing and funny way but it doesn’t always hit the mark. Momoa seems shady but two dimensional as the protector of the seas even if the CGI water worlds looked awful, hopefully his feature will look visually stunning unlike here. Fisher as the enhancing Cyborg is the Ultron of the pack just handily updating when the script calls for it. J.K. Simmons is hardly involved which could be a blessing. Amy Adams is in it more than I expected and gladly brings a human touch to the events even if she takes a back seat as the continuously boring Lois Lane.

There a mass of flaws within the ‘Justice League’ but saying this, I actually think it’s an entertaining film and enjoyable in a number of places. I also like, perhaps their self retaliation against #MarthaGate by having Motherboxes, as if alluding to that atrocious moment before.

5/10

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Ten from the Bottom ’16

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Well thank goodness 2016 is nearly over. What an eventful year, iconic celebrities passing away, politics around the world going crazy, Stranger Things deservedly soaring, Trump undeservedly soaring and movies of the past 12 months missing the mark more than usual. It truly was a disappointing year for film with a lot of the feature’s I’d seen scoring average marks at best.

This easily could have been a Top 20 list…I’ve even had to be cheeky enough to tie a couple of films just to squeeze them into the running order. I’m also sick of this year and looking forward to a joyful experience of 2017 that here’s the bad movies that just missed out from pride of place in the final countdown:

Ghostbusters….The Legend of Tarzan….A Bigger Splash….Bad Neighbors 2….X-Men: Apocalypse….Office Christmas Party….Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children….The Big Short….Bad Moms….Keeping up with the Joneses….The Girl on the Train….Finding Dory….Passengers….The BFG and The Huntsman: Winters War. 

On with the main show then —

10) SUICIDE SQUAD…AND SAUSAGE PARTY

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Yes it’s cheating the system slightly but just call it the Troy Review Electoral College and this is why they both win (or lose by being in the list). Firstly with Suicide Squad, an eagerly awaiting fun looking film with a punchy trailer that actually had a poor script, poorer execution, a soundtrack like an epileptic record player and a bad Joker. Squad review.

Sausage Party had a good if not great premise but is such a film catered to guffawing teenagers with smut layered on every scene that eventually the sex jokes wear thin and there’s nothing left to offer…that food orgy scene is OTT, a lame sequel set up comes about and well…read more in my full review —> SP

9) ME BEFORE YOU

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Not my type of film anyway but on top of this is the near constant cheesiness involved. It’s also a film pushing into trying to be that sad movie that girls wipe away stains of mascara after watching it. More than this, the problem lies with the main disability and how forced it becomes. Me B4 U review

8) ALLIED

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The so-called passion between Cotillard and Pitt is more wet than a Christmassy brussel sprout fart, the story-line is absurdly dull with no clever turn and the boredom factor reaches near Spinal Tap levels of 11. Don’t be a traitor, read the full review here.

7) ZOOLANDER 2

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Fashion is danger! So is this ‘comedy’ sequel sprawling with celebrity cameos, a very shaky script and an overwhelming disappointing feeling you get by seeing it. It tries too hard and fails harder…check out how hot my review is right now.

6) FRIEND REQUEST…AND THE 5TH WAVE

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Let’s begin with Friend Request which is like an unwanted invite you get after seeing Unfriended. This sort of follow up/remake film is terrible. There’s lame jump scares, things become unintentionally funny and it feels similar but badly so to the visual flair of Unfriended. Delete now.

Chloe Grace Moretz in this shocking young adult science fiction attempt is okay but stares into the distance a lot, like I did trying to watch this film. Cheap effects and a terrible twist don’t help the movie along. Review.

Into the Top 5 we go –

5) AMERICAN PASTORAL

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The directorial debut from Ewan McGregor but not one to remember. The one word that would describe this movie is boring. It could have been way more interesting and powerful but it’s overly sentimental and hard to get through. American Bore

4) WARCRAFT

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So much going on and none if it really any good is this mostly boring fantasy flick from the brilliant director Duncan Jones…though you wouldn’t think it watching this. Long, silly and a titled beginning which hopefully has no middle or end to come. Borecraft.

3) BATMAN VS. SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE

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Long. A ridiculous plot. Lex Luthor’s more ridiculous plan. Jesse Eisenberg’s even more ridiculous acting. Boring Cavill. Boring generally. MARTHA! Thank goodness for Batfleck. BvS review

2) WIENER-DOG

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A couple of laughs really really really don’t save this film. It’s dreary, striving to be artistic and/or pretentious. The comedy it does have becomes annoying as it gets drawn out to breaking point. The movie is disjointed and the ending of it all is so horrendous and of bad taste that it leaves the film with such a sour note making you hate it further. Wiener of a film

Well…after taking that depressing trip down movie memory lane, I’ve come to the end of the line. Numero uno, the big kahuna of bad…a film so utterly terrible, unfunny and disgraceful that I knew it would be the first placed worst movie as soon as I’d finished watching it, almost a year ago.

1) DIRTY GRANDPA

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What do you want?? Read my review. I don’t wish to waste time writing more about this film. Go away…see you (hopefully) in 2017!

Suicide Squad (2016)

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Finally, after some admittedly brilliantly edited and fun trailers, the finished article is here. I had been anticipating this for a long time and I’m not even much of a DC nut. With all these expectations I feel that, whilst it’s much better than Martha vs. Martha: Dawn of Justice, it’s still a messy disappointment.

Fearing what could happen in the aftermath of Superman’s ‘death’, Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) wants to assemble the baddest of the bad to combat any world threatening forces. Amongst her wishlist are superb hit-man Floyd Lawton aka Deadshot (Will Smith), Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) and Chato Santana aka El Diablo (Jay Hernandez). Headed up by Colonel Rick Flag (Joel Kinnaman) this villainous and deranged group are tasked with stopping some magical cronies.

What I did like about this superhero…or perhaps anti-hero movie is the frenetic colourful style that runs through it. The look of the characters are also effective in creating identity and a cool mark of branding for the film. The Joker with his slick green hair and many tattoos is a special spin on the comic book baddie we all know, Harley will be everywhere by Halloween, what with her easily identifiable and mad get up. The characters, when grouped together light the film up in a way that rivals El Diablo’s power, especially when near the end they’re fighting in slow motion and showing just what they can do.

The intrigue is also sort of there, or at least director and writer David Ayer attempts to put some in amongst everything else but the kitchen sink that’s already walloping the screen. In a way the shady dealings and talks of official Amanda Waller are dealt right, you feel the political greyness of her world but at the same time it gets lost underneath the rest of this insane world. Everyone feels like a villain at some point as Ayer tries his damnedest to make us actually like the supposed bad guys, the whole witching hour of destruction is another case of flimsy story and loud noise syndrome to include CGI and a third act dilemma.

In a way I liked the psychotic nature of Harley Quinn, her clear knowing of her sex appeal and mad behaviour vamped up to the eleventh degree is all well and good and you can find it fun to a point but then it gets too much and her crazy becomes crazily tiresome, even a last ditched try to throw in some emotional loss her way feels too little too late. The main problem with all the characters is they feel very thin, the majority are written with some sob story backdrop that keeps coming back as if straining to have some heart in this feature.

Steven Price of the beautiful ‘Gravity’ music scores this in a way that feels less than his talent. I can’t even remember much of his work because it’s drowned out by a barrage of songs that feel like a broken jukebox shuffling through hits from The White Stripes to Eminem. The character’s introductions are so fast and backed by differing songs that they feel more like snippets from music videos. In general this is the issue with DC, they’re rushing through their universe and setting up so much that a huge portion gets forgotten and muddled. Glimpses of the Justice League people once again show up like that’s enough to warrant their own movie next year after only just having set up that whole ideal.

Margot Robbie is obviously having fun playing her part as the excitable and fearless baseball bat wielding Harley Quinn. She’s one of the stronger parts of the movie along with Jared Leto. He ensures The Joker is maniacal and unhinged but sadly he’s underused and doesn’t get to shine so much. Viola Davis is pretty good to, convincing as the shadowy government figure using these freaks as her own circus of tricks. Will Smith is alright, he’s bad-ass and gets delivered a larger chunk of the screenplay what with his asides, snips of jokey dialogue and daughter infused drama. Killer Croc, Katana and Slipknot are already dwindling in my memory with how little they do.

Without any hesitation, this is the best film to come out of the DC extended universe so far, it’s fast, humorous in places and quite different but it’s a disappointing movie striving to be edgy and all feeling rather hollow.

5.5/10

Super (2010)

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Much more violent than I expected, as I was just going in thinking this would be a comedy spoof on vigilante heroism. I know James Gunn was at the helm but I wasn’t prepared for the amount of brilliant violence this superhero-drama-comedy has. None of this is a problem for me at least, I liked the dark tone and avenging story arc.

After sleazy Jacques (Kevin Bacon) takes away Frank’s (Rainn Wilson) wife, Frank ends up hearing the words of God and begins a life of superhero justice to try and get Sarah (Liv Tyler) back. It’s a bloody trail of finding himself as he joins up with eager beaver Libby (Ellen Page) as they become the Crimson Bolt and…Boltie!

I like this small but cool genre of superheroes without powers, it’s interesting to see how the movies take a look at the hero in question. This movie did release at the same sort of time as the graphic novel based ‘Kick-Ass’, but this one even if it’s not as fun has a better hold on the person underneath the costume. The way we feel for Frank as he’s subjected to a life of hurt, bullying and being at the bottom, this plus the frankly odd but yet funny words of God and a TV Network avenger help create an interesting narrative for Frank.

James Gunn utilises on his B-movie style seen from ‘Slither’ and gives this 2010 feature a heck load of blood and some Slither creature inspired tentacles for good measure. There isn’t any action sequences per say but there are some brilliant uses of harsh judgement on wrong doers throughout, all that make you realise this is what would happen if people switched and became costumed advocates of good. The red pipe-wrench is amusingly brutal and the buddy drama between Frank and Libby is well scripted by Gunn.

Admittedly, there are a couple of occasions when I thought this film took a tiptoe step too far over the line. The main one being the awkward scene between a horny Libby and a half asleep Frank that ends up going somewhere you can imagine but don’t want to. It just didn’t sit right with me in any way at all. Their friendship was good but stretching that felt wrong and soured the movie.

Everything does also lead, quite limply up to a final act shoot out, which never feels tense or a mountain for Frank to climb, somehow you expect this average Joe to square up to criminal lords and win. Though amongst the thin characters and not overly exciting last act of vengeance, there is an unexpected moment that leaves Frank more motivated and I liked the film for going somewhere like that. As mentioned before, this film succeeds in following Frank well and you do feel like you understand him.

Rainn Wilson plays this beaten down shlob very well, crying ugly, raging madly and running awkwardly he steps up to the mantle of crimson hero rather well and becomes a deranged yet spiritual figure. Ellen Page is off the handle loopy at times, her comic obsessed character sparks off the more grumbly Frank greatly. It’s almost manic how she goes about being loud, seductive, annoying and excited. Kevin Bacon has little to do but pulls off the charismatic note as Bacon only can. Nathan Fillion gets a mention because of his costumed Holy Avenger being overly preachy yet funny.

With an uneven mix of funny and dark violence, this is a weird hero movie but one that does make you laugh in places. I think you perhaps have to have a faintly twisted mind to appreciate where this film dares to tread.

6/10

 

Captain America: Civil War (2016)

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A more grown up touch, insanely fun sequences and the grand ideas of fractions in the camp; this American superhero movie is certainly one of Marvel Studio’s best yet. There’s plenty to keep you entertained over the 147 minute run-time, so even though it does feel long occasionally, it still stands solidly as an action packed yet thoughtful comic book feature.

After Captain America/Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) and his team try and stop Crossbones in Wakanda, some collateral damage causes world leaders to unite in trying to have the Avengers as a public ideal, called into action on their terms and not when the heroes decide to; causing mayhem in the midst of their actions. Iron Man/Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) believes signing these Accords is the best decision and as others join his side, Steve finds himself questioning his motivation but carries on joined by a team as they come head to head in an internal battle that could see the hero squad disassembled.

Beautifully, this movie has courage in tackling the more adult idea of friends and foes. Seeing the Avengers fall apart because of their own egos and processes is darker and much more satisfying then an outside villain of robotic or space origins doing the damage. After the brilliantly political thriller vibes of Winter Soldier, the Captain America movies are doing a grand job of cementing their own tone. This outing has a brooding quality ticking away with a neat constant crisis of identity and failing comradery ensuring that theme isn’t overshadowed by action and special effects.

Captained or directed by Joe and Anthony Russo with a keen eye for giving characters, at least 14 main ones, a story arc and engaging factor is no mean feat and they do it so well. I had fears before seeing this movie that the amount of characters would bloat the plot and suffer the whole movie but even with the amount of people flying or running back and forth, it never feels messy which is a relief. The Russo Brothers manage to direct a fun yet intelligent film that keeps us hooked and expands on the motives of already well set up figures like Captain America and Iron Man whilst introducing new characters with their own narratives, goals and conflicts.

Dealing with a huge script like this, knowing audiences have expectations and want to see the moment a frozen soldier from WW2 fight a rich man in a suit as a cinematic moment of awesomeness must have been daunting but writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely have successfully created a screenplay that includes all those gleeful battles but importantly they have tackled the big moral dilemma of what these heroes do, focusing a lot of the story on the worldwide destruction they leave behind, the people they hurt and all of this is written and shot in a way that feels grounded in reality which truly helps the movie feel relatable even if you know it could never happen.

Even if you know little or nothing of the comic book origins, this film has such an engrossing narrative idea that you end up mulling over the stance you’d take in this situation. This is a great use of interpolation as you question their actions and ultimately decide whose side you’d be on. There is a gut-punching aspect in this movie as we see the cracks appear and these once cartoonish characters become disillusioned, broken and hateful.

Flicking briefly over to the less than positive side, the movie did feel slightly long, not boring just a tad stretched in places. Also I know if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it but this whole Marvel formula is still evident, with the set up, opening fight, middle dilemma and grand ending battle. So even though it does stand upright with its own tone and juggles a lot of characters splendidly, it doesn’t break the mould which I hope it would. There’s also the niggling idea that I want them to be braver in their execution, literally. They should be confident that we’ll still keep coming back even if they kill off characters but you never going in expecting anyone big to die, so all threat of that feels void of feeling.

Great muscle man Chris Evans is still on form as Captain America, his shield technique and fighting growing more impressive as he goes on. Evans plays Rogers in a more developed way too, showing the confused yet patriotic nature as he believes they must continue fighting even if the world doesn’t want them too. Robert Downey Jr. gets to showcase more emotion as a haunting moment of his past plays a heavy weight on the plot. He’s still got charm and witty lines to deliver in his usual way which I’m not complaining about and he also appears as a creepy smooth young version of himself. Scarlett Johansson kicks ass with more head-smacking hand to hand combat and showcases her agent background as Black Widow more. You never know where she is in terms of what camp she’ll settle with, her performance grows as if pleading with Rogers to help stop the inevitable fallout. Elizabeth Olsen is back, and not held back as she waves her fingers creating masses of magical damage. Olsen acts as the figure people are scared of well, because she’s just like a lost girl afraid herself of what she can do and what might happen before realising her strengths. The two new main cast members are great; Chadwick Boseman is stealthy and cool as Black Panther and entices us to what else we’ll see down the line. Tom Holland is a perfectly set up Spider-Man, fast and agile in his new suit and irritatingly dweeby yet fun as Peter Parker. The film is filled with a superb ensemble from Daniel Bruhl to Paul Rudd. Also can it become canon that every CA film has someone from Community in it!

Heroes fall in this genuinely fun action movie, it may not be as good as Winter Soldier but it’s got plenty of thematic interest, a talented cast and a great sign of things to come. What a smashing way to kick off Phase Three.

7.5/10

Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)

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I don’t think a huge blockbuster film of this calibre on top of being the first time in cinema to see two DC heroes square up to each other was meant to be this boring, but Holy Smokes it is. It’s just written poorly or not all it feels like as we jump from moment to moment, these pillars of good in their own rights are completely tarnished by effects, Zack Snyder and a laughable villain.

After the death of his parents and huge damage to Metropolis; killing his friend and toppling his building, Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) becomes Batman in order to try and battle the God-like powers of Superman (Henry Cavill). Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) also wants to stop the alien in red and blue and with the assistance of some discovered Kryptonite, he may be able to set Supes versus Bat with ease, leaving him to…make more money and um live in a totally destroyed city.

That’s the thing, the story in this film is near non existent that Chris Terrio and David S. Goyer were probably just putting their feet up and thinking that having these two massive comic book characters fighting would be enough. Well hey, that’s been filling the trailers and selling tickets so however bad this film is, it’s making a heck of a lot of money so I doubt they’re caring that their screenplay is so devoid of intelligence, suspense or power.

For this yawn-inducing 151 minute movie, we hardly see any real action between the heavy weights. Instead we get lots of Affleck as Wayne, Lois Lane subjected to tedious journalism and an awful turn from Eisenberg as a mop-haired Luthor that seems to have aspirations to be a Batman baddie instead of Superman’s adversary. There’s a lot they’re trying to slot into this film but most of it is headaches from the amount of CGI that gets thrown into the mix. Instead of what could have been an interesting look at the idea of justice and man vs. God, that gets smoked over by more than Batman’s smoke grenade. I’ve never switched off in action movies and yet somehow in this film, I found my mind wandering as uninspiring sequences played out.

Zack Snyder directs this film like he’s trying to bring the Christopher Nolan touch to his movie. There’s a somewhat dark and broody level to this movie but it becomes too much and with that is Snyder’s typical directorial influence as we drift into ‘Watchmen’ visuals that feel so out of place and stretch this movie’s runtime ever further. I mean, that whole desert Batman scene, with winged creatures and then the vengeful laser shooting Superman was so stupid and added nothing. There’s no consistency with this film, like Snyder is trialling different ideas to keep us entertained but actually making everything unbalanced, which on top of the less than ordered screenplay equals a mess of a film.

The whole special effects over use is mind-boggling, for why they ever needed to include such a horrendous visual of a genetically enhanced character is beyond me. It looked hideous, filled the IMAX screen with too much CGI and enforced my opinion that this movie is over the top. I may as well be Brick Tamland shouting LOUD NOISES to try and rival the constant barrage of smashes and crashes this movie is overloaded with. If the effects weren’t drowning you with noise then you could be sure that Hans Zimmer and Junkie XL’s score would. I mean, together they had their moments in making some dramatic music but it swelled way too much and smothered the scenes. Oh and that operatic hilarity of the score for when Luthor goes to the ship felt so off kilter.

I said it from the outset that the DC Universe are behind and trying to keep up with the well mapped out plans from Marvel. The fact that we only had ‘Man of Steel’ and then they bring in Batman to try and keep appeal shows that they’re rushing to set up the Justice League and no longer be stragglers. Hey, who cares, straggle away, make another Superman movie, introduce Affleck in a standalone Batman film, have Wonder Woman first before shoe-horning them all in together with flashes of the Flash and cameos from Aquaman and Cyborg too. This film is way too bloated because they’ve shoved everything in instead of focusing on setting them all up properly and then uniting the Justice League. It’s sad that this film felt more like a tiring ordeal to sit through than an exciting event.

Ben Affleck, to his credit does good in his role which will now quell that dire turn as Daredevil. He brings a suited stiffness and arrogance as Wayne and a hard bulky combat ready look as Batman. Henry Cavill is still bland as Superman, providing little more than a muscled body and a vague stern look from time to time. Jesse Eisenberg was announced and gave me hope and intrigue to see what he’d bring but however good he is at playing the villain, I can’t shake how ridiculous he is. Eisenberg makes Lex Luthor sound and act like a pantomime villain dreaming to be like the Joker as he gallivants around like a neurotic and excitable puppy. Amy Adams tries her best in a dull role as Lois Lane, getting into possible strong moments only to become the damsel in distress. Gal Gadot for me was the only positive I could find, the music with her arrival as Wonder Woman helped make her seem like the character we all wanted. Gadot played Diana Prince with a seductive Selina Kyle grace and convinced me as the warrior with a lasso of truth.

Batman v. Superman just doesn’t work, being a festival of a lot going on but nothing to prevent the onset of boredom, unless you’re a die-hard fan that looks past obvious faults. It’s not as massively bad as I expected from the reviews and friend responses but…it is bad.

4.5/10

Deadpool (2016)

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Not like other Marvel outings, this riotous and violent action film is both an unconventional superhero flick and love story. It’s gleefully bold in being rude, bloody and constructed with pacy excitement. This is a great addition to the comic book world that does new things to finally twist the tired guidelines and therefore results in audiences seeing a fun new anti-hero to save the day.

Former mercenary and still loud and dangerous as ever Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) finds out he’s got serious bouts of cancer so he goes to Ajax/Francis (Ed Skrein) to get treatment thinking he’s being made into a superhero, as he becomes immortal. Wilson eventually finds out they’re turning people into slaves so he adopts a suited identity as Deadpool to avenge his torturous capture and win back his one love in the form of Vanessa (Morena Baccarin).

It’s awesome to see a superhero movie hit the screens that doesn’t feel bloated or tired. This project gladly drops the expected formula we’ve come to expect from the MCU and turns it upside down and inside out with added gore. Deadpool is a character that I admit I knew very little of, apart from the look of his costume, but from what I hear this film sticks very well to the source material unlike the X-Men bodge job they made with Ryan Reynolds the first time around. That’s the thing, this film is joyfully frisky because it winks at the whole superhero genre and specifically the X-Men family, to which Deadpool wants nothing to do with.

Tim Miller smashes onto the scene for his debut directing job and whoa Nellie does he show what a capable director for this he is. The way this superhero feature is shot does make you feel like you are witnessing something refreshing. The stylistic shots around the titular character and his fighting style or the zany quick back and forths between scenes does make this film entertainingly different. It’s like Miller seems to care more for the character tomfoolery than typical segwayed set ups for further instalments which are found in most other Marvel pictures. There’s a good amount of style and substance to the directing by Miller which blows apart the comic genre but still leaves enough to make it explosive, recognisable and…dirty.

One of the strongest components in this film is the character of Deadpool himself and the way he presents himself on screen. In fact he realises he is on screen and talks to us, breaking down the fourth wall and inviting us into his mad world. This new angle with self awareness and arrogant charm is a jewel to behold as it sparkles with satisfactory smarts in being a meta type nudge at the whole superhero brand. From his kiddy Adventure Time watch to the hero moving the camera away, Deadpool is a knowing and animated persona that just won’t quit and we’re glad for his maximum effort.

The opening credits alone give us a hint to the different road the film will travel down, what with no cast names but general stereotyped titles appearing for us to read. The best one has to be in the writing where it says something about being the real heroes and those heroes are Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick who really do craft a fantastically clever screenplay just with teenage crudity thrown in for the masses. The interactions between villain and hero or lover and lover are sharp and wickedly dark in places that makes this film stand on the edge, looking down into an abyss it could easily have toppled into if it wasn’t careful. Intelligently the writers carry on staring down at the likes of ‘Dirty Grandpa’ in said abyss as they know how to make the rude moments work.

Ryan Reynolds is a comforting jerk in this film as you feel at ease watching him sink into the red suited menace. It’s clearly a love child of Reynolds as he wants to get this hero right and not CGI green either. What with ‘The Voices’ and elements of ‘Self/Less’ Reynolds is proving himself to be a watchable rising actor from the usual comedy farces he made before. The movements and vocal delivery of him in this are so on point that he is Deadpool and there’s no denying it. Morena Baccarin steps away from the DC world of ‘Gotham’ to play the equally un-PC Vanessa to match up with Wade. She’s gorgeous and feisty in this film and not subjected totally to background boredom. Ed Skrein is the obligatory British villain as they themselves mention and he does it well, the rough tone to his voice helping shape him as a non-stop antagonist for Wilson to face. T. J. Miller serves his purpose as the comic relief and is still believable as a kinda friend of Wilson’s. All of this and I still haven’t mentioned Blind Al, Dopinder, X-Men mutants Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead who are all characters that get enough screen time for us to buy into them.

Whether we’re seeing Matrix like bullet countdowns, Hugh Jackman digs or knowing narrations lead us back to the origin story, this movie is colourfully manic but in a very very good way.

7.5/10