REVIEW: Django – Unchained

Former dentist, Dr. King Schultz, buys the freedom of a slave, Django, and trains him with the intent to make him his deputy bounty hunter. Instead, he is led to the site of Django’s wife who is under the hands of Calvin Candie, a ruthless plantation owner.

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Now don’t get me wrong Quinton Tarantino developed a great plot for this movie however I can’t help but feel that it fizzled out towards the end and he was trying too hard to develop a decent ending. Saying that I thought the ending was fantastic and many of the ending scenes could have been a perfect ending to the film. At the start of the film you see Django chained to other slaves when along comes Dr. King Schultz to save him, but what Django doesn’t know are his true intentions which you find out later on in the movie (I thought this part was especially great). Being a Tarantino film the plot develops into a great storyline with lots of blood, subtle humour and straight up action. Being a blood thirsty film fan the effects and ‘OTT’ shootings and blood was fantastic. Great watch.

Django: Unchained had a star studded cast and has some of the most talented stars in Hollywood on the bill including Jamie Foxx, Samuel L Jackson, Leonardo DiCaprio and Christoph Waltz… not forgetting a cameo from Quinton Tarantino himself which I thought was unnecessary, awful acting but hilarious still. Jamie Foxx was defiantly the right man for the job portraying all the moods that Django would be feeling at that current time period starting with being vulnerable chained to other slaves in transport into growing stronger and learning to be the best at what he can do “killing white folk and getting paid for it”. Samuel L Jackson played Calvin Candie’s head slave Stephen in a witty but very strong performance with such great humour coming out of his mouth, Leonardo DiCaprio as Calvin Candie was one of the strongest characters in the movie, he portrayed the character so well, we have never seen DiCaprio in this type of roll before but man was he good. However the man who stole the show was Christoph Waltz as Dr. King Schultz, we saw him in Inglurious Bastards portraying ‘The Jew Hunter’ in this movie he takes on a slightly lighter role of a bounty hunter… yeah lighter. He’s fast on the trigger and deadly… a knockout performance.This had the potential to be the best movie of 2013 already but in regards to the plot thinning towards the end it will just be one of 2013 great productions but I wouldn’t say no to see it again.

The original theme used in the film was brilliant and really got stuck in my head and was so relevant to when the movie was set. The thing you get with Tarantino is that you know he’s going to go big and ‘OTT’ with effects and blood and he didn’t disappoint. Great visuals, great audio.

Overall Rating: 5/5

REVIEW: Halloween (2007)

The residents of Haddonfield don’t know it yet… but death is coming to their small sleepy town. Sixteen years ago, a ten year old boy called Michael Myers brutally kills his step father, his elder sister and her boyfriend. Sixteen years later, he escapes from the mental institution and makes his way back to his hometown intent on a murderous rampage pursued by Dr Sam Loomis who is Michael’s doctor and the only one who knows Michael’s true evil. Elsewhere a shy teenager by the name of Laurie Strode is babysitting on the night Michael comes home… is it pure coincidence that she and her friends are being stalked by him?

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The plot in this film is brilliant, it follows loosely on the original storyline with similar elements still looming, in my opinion what makes this film is the beginning of the film and the in depth explanation of Michaels growing evil as he is convicted to a mental asylum. Rob Zombie has done an excellent job of this and his twisted movie making ways following in the footsteps of ‘House of 100 Corpses’ and ‘The Devils Rejects’ assures you that there is a lot of blood and brutal killings, none of that shit CGI effects you get from low budget movies, blood and lots of it!

Rob Zombies adaptation of the characters was brilliant in my eyes, he really showed development of the characters and the actors he used to portray this such as Sherri Moon Zombie, Sid Haig and Bill Mosley all who have appeared in Zombies previous horror movies played an excellent part. However let’s not forget a certain blood thirsty killer Michael Myers, he truly made this movie spine chilling walking around with his signature kitchen knife slashing innocent people that walk upon his path of destruction and rage. One key point to add here is the change in his appearance; his obsession with masks led us all to wonder what mask he would take up this is remake of a classic slasher movie… and the answer was the Halloween mask his sister’s boyfriend who he bludgeoned to death with an alumni baseball bat wore. The mask gave off that the effect of human skin, and the person behind it was human… if you can call him human. The characters truly stole this movie for me. Full marks.

This is one of the films that I could watch over and over again… Although it was a bit slow to start… you know there’s going to be blood, and that’s what you wait for and receive!

Everything was up to scratch for a film of this genre, no CGI effects the better if you ask me! Lots of bloods, pure gore none of that fake shit. Also what was effective was the used of long range camera shots to show Michaels presence in the background as he was tailing Laurie and her teenage friends.

Overall Rating: 3.5/5

REVIEW: The Hobbit – An Unexpected Journey

Bilbo Baggins is swept into a quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor from the fearsome dragon Smaug. Approached out of the blue by the wizard Gandalf the Grey, Bilbo finds himself joining a company of thirteen dwarves led by the legendary warrior, Thorin Oakenshield. Their journey will take them into the Wild; through treacherous lands swarming with Goblins and Orcs, deadly Wargs and Giant Spiders, Shapeshifters and Sorcerers. Although their goal lies to the East and the wastelands of the Lonely Mountain first they must escape the goblin tunnels, where Bilbo meets the creature that will change his life forever … Gollum. Here, alone with Gollum, on the shores of an underground lake, the unassuming Bilbo Baggins not only discovers depths of guile and courage that surprise even him, he also gains possession of Gollum’s “precious” ring that holds unexpected and useful qualities.

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The plot in the book is phenomenal, however at the moment I am unsure what my feelings are about Peter Jackson trying to spit a 309 page book into three films, is it to insure he gets every spec of detail in? We’ll have to wait and see! The plot is full of heart warming adventure and plenty of action; one of the most notable scenes is the battle of Erebor. The plot gets 5/5 from me!

Without a doubt Martin Freeman was the right man for the job! His portrayal of ‘Young Bilbo’ was brilliant, he brought humour and pure emotion to the role and is well nearly as short as a hobbit… who could tell the difference? The entire dwarf class played a brilliant part in the movie filling the film with joy and laughter, they weren’t too bad in battle either… for dwarfs. Although there are many new characters we haven’t seen previously in Peter Jackson adaptation of J.R.R Tolkien’s novels we do see the likes of Gandalf (Ian McKellan), Elrond (Hugo Weaving), Saruman (Christopher Lee) and Galadriel (Cate Blanchett)  return to our screens to assist our favourite hobbit along his unexpected journey.

“I know you doubt me – I know you always have. You’re right, I often think of Bag End. I miss my books and my armchair and my garden. See that’s where I belong. That’s home. That’s why I came back. You don’t have one – a home. It was taken from you. But I will help you take it back if I can.” –Bilbo Baggins: The Hobbit

Over and over and over and over a million times over! Well worth the watch!

Again there was much speculation over The Hobbit being shot and shown in 3D, and also the fact that is was originally recorded for 48HFR (High Frame Rate). It was the first Lord of the Rings films to be in 3D… and can I say they made the right decision filming it in 3D and HFR. The visuals of the movie were stunning; I couldn’t take my eyes of the screen especially the moment that they stumble upon Rivendell. The HFR produces faster frames and made the picture so much clearer than your average film, it won’t be long before other films follow in its footsteps. One word… STUNNING.

Overall Rating: 5/5

REVIEW: Texas Chainsaw 3D

 After the first massacre in 1974, the townspeople suspected that the Sawyer family were responsible. A vigilante mob of enraged locals surrounded the Sawyer house, burning it to the ground and killing every last member of the family. Decades later a young woman named Heather learns that she has inherited a Texas estate from her grandmother. She decides to bring her friends along on the road trip to investigate her inheritance. On arrival she uncovers she has inherited a mansion but is yet to uncover the terrors that lurk in the basement below it.

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The plot has a decent background to it following after the original 1974 film, the plot develops steadily and is great for all those Texas Chainsaw Massacre fans out there however if you haven’t watched any of the films before you might get lost, but for you viewers that have seen the others in the franchise.. what a twist right?! Probably the best aspect of this movie was the characters and how they picked up from the original film, although this follows on from the 1974 original it is more modern than other adaptations for example the use of iPhone’s. Leatherface played by Dan Yeager was ultimately twisted and without a doubt handy with a chainsaw but I couldn’t help notice that he didn’t do much of the killing… I mean compared to other films of this kind it was very weak. The character that stood out for me was the character of Heather who later on finds out a horrifying secret about where she comes from, absolutely fantastic. Although I am a fan of the franchise I think I’m going to give this one a miss when it comes to DVD.

There was much speculation about the 3D aspects of the film and well they were all right. Not every film is meant for 3D and Texas 3D is a flop even if it is top of the box office. I counted one moment where it actually looked 3D, very disappointing.

Nether the less, still check it out… I’m sure you could pick it up in a bargain bin soon after DVD release!

Overall Rating: 2/5

REVIEW: Sinister

“True-crime writer Ellison Oswalt moves himself and his family into a house where an horrific crime took place earlier, but his family doesn’t know. He is trying to find out more about the crime so he can write a new book about it to help his flailing career. He uses some “snuff” film footage he finds in the house to help in his research, but he soon finds more than he bargained for. There is a figure in each of the films, but who or what is it? As a result, his family start to suffer (as does he), and things take a turn for theworse. Will they survive?

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The movie starts at a steady pace and continues the chilling effect throughout with Mr Boogie definitely giving it that fear factor. The movie is full of obvious sections that will make you jump (although I think its stupid and not scary in certain circumstances and films of it genre) however I must say this film did make me jump and was in fact both scary and disturbing. As the movie came to a close the plot kind of lost its way and it didn’t explain anything that happened in the previous scenes, and the ending was bad too.

The characters in the movie are really well cast and Ethan Hawke gave a very convincing performance, however I feel that it was Mr Boogie and the children of the snuff movies that really made the film for me. It’s quite surprising how a few children can make you tremble, an utterly spine chilling performance.

 I would watch this movie again, great film, however maybe not for a few months.

 Some of the shots that were used were great and were very common of  a horror/thriller like this, the snuff movie footage was good and the audio was very creepy especially the effect of the old movie player.

Overall Rating: 4/5