This movie is all about magic, but doesn’t necessarily have that Pixar magic.
Tom Holland voices Ian in “Onward,” a young elf living in a world that, despite fantasy and magic elements existing, has become like our own modern society. A high schooler, Ian lives with his mom Laurel (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) and his older brother Barley (Chris Pratt) who hasn’t exactly found his way in life.
Ian’s father Wilden passed away before he was born, something that weighs heavily on him. When he turns 16, though, he receives a staff for his birthday and finds a spell to bring back his dad for one day. He starts the spell, but is only able to bring his dad’s legs back. Knowing they only have a day, Ian and Barley decide to go on a quest to find a way to complete the spell.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Onward’ offers a dull quest”
It seems like the dragons are trained by this point, but the name still rolls off the tongue nicely.
In the third and likely final film in the series that started in 2010, the main character Hiccup (Jay Baruchel), an expert dragon trainer and rider is now chief of Berk. Since the events of the second picture, the island village where vikings reside has become a sort of safe haven for dragons. Because the people of Berk have become experts in handling dragons, thanks largely to Hiccup’s efforts in the past two movies, the dragons are able to live in relative peace.
However because of how many dragons are coming to the island for safety, the land is becoming overcrowded. This is on top of the fact that there are antagonistic forces who want to eliminate dragons, seeing them as a threat. In response, Hiccup decides to find the so called “Hidden World,” where dragons can live safely without being found.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Third ‘Dragon’ ends the series on a positive note”
What a disappointment.
After several decades, the character Mary Poppins has finally returned to the big screen. The new film with the iconic character takes place several years after the original, but follows some of the main characters. The Banks siblings, Jane (Emily Mortimer) and Michael (Ben Whishaw), are now grown and Michael has children of their own.
However, times are tough again for the family, as Michael’s wife has passed away and bills are piling up. In fact, Michael’s financial troubles lead to the possibility of him losing the house. Because of all the difficulties, Poppins (Emily Blunt) arrives again to help get things back on track.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Mary Poppins Returns’ without the magic”
Despite rocky a rocky reception over several movies, the DC Comics Cinematic Universe still has movies coming out. The latest is this feature following the hero of the deep.
“Aquaman” takes place after the events of last year’s “Justice League” and follows the water-based hero, played by Jason Momoa, whose actual name is Arthur. Embracing the idea of being a hero, Arthur has taken it upon himself to fight crime and rescue people on the high seas.
However, while this is taking place, the politics of his estranged home Atlantis are turning dangerous. Arthur’s half-brother Orm (Patrick Wilson), who’s now a ruler in Atlantis, is fed up with humans negatively impacting the ocean and now wants to launch a war. In order to stop the potential conflict, another Atlantis royal, Mera (Amber Heard), recruits Arthur to take his place as the true king.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Aquaman’ is flawed, but fun”
A steampunk world with some fantasy and Hugo Weaving to boot? This should have been a fairly entertaining ride. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case with this adaptation.
“Mortal Engines” is set several hundred years in the future where human civilization was devastated following mass explosions. The story picks up with large sections of humanity living in mobile cities that move from place to place, some with more power than others.
The main focus of the story is on Hester Shaw (Hera Hilmar), who’s seeking revenge against Thaddeus Valentine (Weaving), the head researcher for the (now) mobile city of London, who’s trying to harness the power of old technology from the pinnacle of human civilization. In her adventure, Hester meets Tom (Robert Sheehan), a young museum worker who ends up tagging along.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Mortal Engines’ is a poor attempt at building a new fantasy series”
It’s safe to say that the magic is gone.
For the uninitiated, “Crimes of Grindelwald” is the second installment of the “Fantastic Beasts” series, which is a spinoff of the “Harry Potter” movies. The series is set decades before the “Harry Potter” events and follows a wizard named Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne), who’s an expert when it comes to dealing with various creatures.
In this installment, Scamander is tasked by a younger Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) to keep track of a situation in France that’s related to the fearsome antagonist of the series, Grindelwald (Johnny Depp). Like its predecessor from 2016, “Crimes” has Newt team up with his friends from New York, Jacob (Dan Fogler), Tina (Katherine Waterston) and Queenie (Alison Sudol).
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Beasts’ sequel isn’t all that fantastic”
I can’t say that I ever expected Jack Black and Cate Blanchett to make a good onscreen duo, but here we are.
The two performers appear on the big screen in this fantasy film, directed by Eli Roth. While they headline the picture, though, the main character of the picture is Lewis, played by Owen Vaccaro. The film’s opening finds Lewis moving to Michigan to live with his uncle Jonathan (Black) after the death of his parents. Not long after Lewis moves in, he soon finds out that both his uncle and his uncle’s friend Florence (Blanchett) are warlocks.
As he begins to learn about the world of magic, Lewis not only finds out that sorcery exists, but that the house he’s living in contains an evil clock with nefarious designs.
Continue reading “REVIEW: Black and Blanchett elevate otherwise forgettable ‘House with Clocks’”
After seven books and eight movies, the “Harry Potter” franchise seemingly came to a close in 2011. The door to that universe was reopened last weekend, though, with the prequel “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.”
However, this flick didn’t quite capture the passion, wonder and most of all storytelling ability that its predecessors did.
The film follows the character Newt (Eddie Redmayne) a researcher and writer who travels the world studying and protecting various beasts of the magical world. The movie picks up as his travels bring him to the United States.
Continue reading “REVIEW: ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Offers Some Excitement But Not Much Else”
Jessica Brown Findlay
While “Victor Frankenstein” references the famous mad scientist, this retelling actually takes place from Igor’s (Radcliffe) perspective. The movie begins with Igor working as a clown and amateur doctor at the circus. His whole life changes, though, when he meets Victor (McAvoy), who sees his medical techniques.
After the two meet, Frankenstein decides to bring Igor with him to help with scientific experiments to reanimate dead tissue.
Continue reading “Victor Frankenstein review”
Vin Diesel is Kaulder (though it sounds more like Colder), a witch hunter working for a branch of the Church called the Axe and Cross.
After killing the Witch Queen hundreds of years ago, Kaulder was cursed with immortality. He’s used this ability to keep the world safe, but things start to get dangerous when rumors of the Witch Queen’s return begin to come out.
Continue reading “The Last Witch Hunter review”