2018 Anticipated Movies

Introduction:

Typically, I end up seeing about one movie a month. Looks like we might be off to a slow start in 2018. That said, there are quite a few movies I really want to see this year. Here they are roughly in release order.

 

Black Panther:

Release Date Feb 16, 2018

In recent years, Marvel has done a great job of fleshing out a lot of the characters I’d never heard of because I’m not a huge comic book fan. I read a few Star Wars comics as a kid, but never subscribed to any particular series. Marvel Studios spinoff stories have been well told, well acted, and all around superbly played. That’s why it made my list.

 

Tomb Raider:

Release Date: March 16, 2018

I’m pretty sure this is a reboot based on the excellent video game, Rise of the Tomb Raider. I loved that game. Still do. It provided a cool backstory to how Lara ended up becoming an adventurer. Video game movies in general often leave much to be desired, but I’m going in with the perspective that the movie is going to be its own thing with only vague things like the game. The franchise has usually come through in terms of providing a nice action flick.

 

Avengers: Infinity War

Release Date: May 4, 2018

Looks amazing. I’m a tad nervous about how they can pull off a good movie with so many characters to give screentime to. How do you balance a thing like that. I’m pretty sure from that trailer there are over a dozen Marvel characters teaming up this round.

 

Solo: A Star Wars Story

 

Release Date: May 25, 2018

Not sure I believe this release date. It will make a longer wait for the 9th episode of Star Wars but it’ll be way shorter a wait to get to this movie. This one, to me, will be the true test of whether or not Disney can make a viable spinoff Star Wars movie. Rogue One was excellent, but it also fit in very nicely with the established storylines. Here, they’re venturing into a previously unexplored backstory. Should be fun, but I have my reservations.

 

The Incredibles 2:

Release Date: June 15, 2018

It’s been ages since I saw the first movie, but I remember liking it. Sequels tend not to be as good as the original, but since it’s probably been over a decade since the first one, the franchise probably had a chance to reset.

 

Robin Hood:

Release Date: September 21, 2018

Heard it’s darker than most Robin Hood tales, but it still looks like a good time. People have always taken weird angles with the outlaw. I loved the BBC’s latest TV series on the subject. I guess I’m more curious about this one than truly excited.

X-Men: Dark Phoenix

Release Date: November 2, 2018

I’ll be the first to admit that I haven’t kept up with the entire X-men franchise. I think I missed most of the first movies. Might try to do some catchup, but regardless, the last few have been decent movies. They’re decent scifi action.

 

Ralph Breaks the Internet

Release Date: November 21, 2018

The first Wreck it Ralph movie was a good time that harkened back to the beginning days of video games. It struck that rare balance between being a cool kids movie and having enough video game lore to intrigue young adults who grew up in the 80’s and 90’s where video games had some booming years.

 

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Couldn’t find any great promo pictures. Might be too early?

Release Date: December 14, 2018

Arguably the stupidest sounding title on my list, this one looks like a great movie. (Not a fan of the multiple hyphens.) Most fans will agree that the Spiderman movies have successfully entered a new era with Tom Holland in the spidey suit.

 

Conclusion:

I’m optimistic about the year’s choices of big screen movies. Should at least make the AMC stubs plan worth it. Usually, I see Star Wars first on principle, but this year, I’m breaking tradition and going to see Jumanji on Jan 1.

What are you looking forward to seeing in theaters?

 

 

 


Recap 2017 Movies

Introduction:

I didn’t do as well as I usually do keeping all the movie stubs this year, but I’ll look at a list of 2017 movies and let you know what I got to see. These mini-reviews are as spoiler-free as I can get them, but no absolute promises something won’t slip by.

 

Rogue One

Dates Seen: 1/2/17, 1/3/17, 1/4/17, 1/10/17 (and another 4 times in 2016)
Rating: 5/5 stars
Comments: Okay, so anybody looking at those dates would see that I really enjoyed Rogue One. Hadn’t planned to see it 3 consecutive days, but I remember the one on the 2nd was because I wanted it to be the first movie I saw in 2017, the Tuesday one happened because the theater had $5 tickets on Tuesday, and the Wednesday one happened because I had AMC credit and wanted to see what the hype was about the Dolby digital sound.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story satisfied most of the fan base. It brought to light the grittier side of the Rebellion against the evil Empire. War is messy. I also think it did a nice job with fleshing out some of the political maneuvering going on as moffs tried to please the emperor. The rather large cast of new characters integrated well with the old favorites.

 

Lego Batman

Date Seen: 2/20/17

Rating: 4/5 stars

Comments: A decent Lego movie that didn’t hesitate to poke fun at the long and varied history of Batman movies. Surprisingly, it also showed some character growth for our dark knight. I did end up seeing it again as a dvd, but it’s not the sort of movie I could take on loop.

Logan

Date Seen: 4/10/17

Rating: 4/5 stars

Comments: I had some time to kill in New York City, so I caught this movie I’d intended to see but hadn’t gotten to before. It’s enjoyable. There’s decent action. I liked the new kid and her story. They integrated the program thing well. I’m sort of a sucker for this type of secret government experiments scifi.

 

Born in China

Date Seen: 4/22/17

Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Comments: Beautiful music. Nice for a nature oriented documentary. Not sure it’s one that needs to be seen on a big screen, but it’s worth watching.

 

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2

Date Seen: 5/6/17

Rating: 4/5 stars

Comments: One of those rare sequels that comes off just as enjoyable as the first. The first may still be slightly better, but this one had all the same hallmarks: snarky humor, cool fights, weird scifi.

 

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

Date Seen: 5/27/17

Rating: 4/5 stars

Comments: A worthy successor to the Pirates saga. Like any 4th or 5th (this is the 5th right?) movie, it’s not quite as good as the first. The first movie was downright awesome, but the sequels have always fallen short of it. This particular one takes place a long time after the first few, so it’s sort of a reboot of the series. Disney’s trying to breathe new life into the franchise, and they mostly succeed.

Wonder Woman:

Dates Seen: June-ish 2017 (pretty sure I saw this one twice)

Rating: 4.5/5 stars

Comments: I thoroughly enjoyed this movie. It’s one I’d consider adding to a personal dvd/bluray collection. I haven’t yet, but maybe someday I’ll remember that at an opportune time. The movie has quite a bit of setup, but I enjoyed all that because I’m not familiar with the Wonder Woman lore. They even managed to throw in some character development, some humor, and a heck of a lot of action.

 

Spider-Man Homecoming:

Date Seen: June-ish 2017

Rating: 4/5 stars

Comments: Think I missed one of the reboot series for Spiderman. I don’t think I saw the ones with Andrew Garfield in the red tights. Anyway, this reboot works. I pity the poor props person who had to rebuild the Death Star they had to drop in the movie. The movie focused on Peter Parker trying to muddle his way through high school and being a superhero. Mr. Stark treats him like a kid, which has him terribly frustrated.

 

Dunkirk

Date Seen: July-ish 2017

Rating: 4/5 stars

Comments: This is definitely a movie enhanced by seeing on a big screen. There are very few lines of dialogue throughout this whole movie. It does a decent job showing the struggle to survive, and the desperation of the moment. War is messy.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Dates Seen: 12/15/17, 12/17/17, 12/28/17

Rating: 4.5/5 stars

Comments: As the middle of a trilogy, it’s probably going to have the least closure of the new Star Wars movies. When people asked how many times I will see it, I’ve been answering that it’s likely to fall in between Rogue One (8) and The Force Awakens (14). The Last Jedi will likely stay in theaters longer than Rogue One, but I doubt I’ll be inclined to see this one 14 times in theaters.

I’ll definitely buy the dvd and watch it a few more times, but it doesn’t have quite as much closure as I like in stories. Note, this is the same reason Empire was never my favorite. That shocks a lot of hard core Star Wars fans. The porgs are useless but amazingly cute. The story development is intriguing. It’s definitely a Disneyfied version of Star Wars, but it’s still very good.

 

Conclusion:

I feel like the year’s movie selection held a good number of gems. Did you see any of these? What did you think?


Movie Reviews: 4/5 Stars Spiderman Homecoming

Note: I don’t own the rights to the movie poster. You can find it here.

Introduction:

I enjoyed this movie. It’s an origins story for Spiderman, but it gets past the stuff we’ve seen before and dives into Peter’s struggle to balance school and life as the webslinger. He’s frustrated because Tony Stark/Iron Man’s treating him like a kid. He’s also crushing on a girl who’s head of the Academic Decathlon team. He’s a genius but unreliable when it comes to competing.

Additional Comments:

  • I loved how doing the right thing didn’t always make everything better.
  • Much of the movie turned into typical Marvel action fare – how many buildings and vehicles can we destroy in the next two hours?
  • Tom Holland fills the role nicely. Aunt May works. Her last line’s perfect. I like how they worked MJ in.
  • I’m never a fan of home videos so the beginning was annoying. I like the idea, but the shaky cam style messes with my head.
  • There’s a good balance between ups and downs for the hero, sentiment, growing pains, and action. And comedy. I don’t think there were quite as many funny lines as other Marvel movies, but they worked in some situational comedy like the gangster giving him interrogation advice.
  • I wonder how many Death Stars they broke for that one scene?
  • They’re definitely shooting for a sequel, but there’s enough closure to feel like you’ve seen a complete story.
  • Except the stinger. It’s a stinker. (Okay, so mildly amusing but leaves one feeling annoyed nonetheless.)

Conclusion:

They’ve successfully passed along the Spiderman torch, yet again. Not even sure I saw the Andrew Garfield version. Last Spidey I remember was Toby…and that was a very long time ago. Definitely the sort of movie worth seeing in theaters and adding to your blu ray collection if you have such a thing.

In the mood to splurge on your Spiderman Obsession?