will list a few movies that fit into this bandwidth that I haven't seen just to
give a more complete look at what I have and have not covered, mostly because I
have only 3 entries here and there were more out there to watch. "Winter's Tale," widely considered
one of the worst movies released all year I wanted to see it to be disappointed
in how it probably was not as bad as people say; "How to Train Your Dragon 2," I actually want to see the first one before seeing this one, it looks
like something I would love; "Maleficent," I have no real desire to
watch this; "Horns," I do not even know if this came out anywhere,
much like "The Lady in Black" it looks to be a Danny Radcliffe movie I
will not enjoy; and "Exodus: Gods and Kings" I have no trouble
appreciating Biblical stories as a sort of mythology, but this particular story
has been done definatively twicebefore so why again, how about a movie of
Joshua taking over Jericho? And on to
the main events.
"Exodus" has had definitive telling in the past Noah hasn't and for a
big release this is a very challenging presentation of the material. The hero is driven mad with religious fervor,
a world so corrupt and failing that its destruction does not seem like an over
reaction, non-traditional portrayals of esoteric material, and a favorable
depiction of evolution and environmentalism.
The idea that dominion over nature means stewardship rather than a right
to exploit is actually a good counter argument to a lot of drill-baby-drill
perspectives held by religious people.
is far from perfect, it is boring, there are clear instances of a story break
(making it to the mountain of Methuselah, escaping the flood on the ark, and
ultimately the movies actual ending on dry land), maybe my patience with
stories being told in multiple parts has made me more critical of epics like
this being told in a single installment.
I can also see this movie as being too dark or violent for people who
are expecting a biblical story for the family, though I do not think that a
planetary holocaust should be your first choice in that venue.
This is an
odd one, and I am glad that Frank Miller had very little creative input on the
subject. While the original
"300" was a fun movie about a tiny nation trying to rally against a
larger empire to secure their way of life dedicated to reason... Let's be clear, it is propaganda. The glorious
white people with their sculpted abs, brilliant minds, and bloodlines pure of
the deformities of other cultures fighting against the multi-ethnic force who
in real life expressly forbid slavery while the Spartans had the largest slave
population in all of Greece. Frank Miller is a deplorable racist, and while his artistic contributions to comic
books are begrudgingly acknowledged we should all take a step back and look at
how he has gone crazy and all of his work has had undercurrents of racism and
misogyny, because "300: Rise of an Empire" kind of does take a step
back and look at how complex things were.
Spartans are looked at as violent but useful to the more tactical Greeks, and
the Greek people are seen (rightly) as villains in need of conquest by the
Persians. Eva Green's character was
abused in Greek society and saved by the Persians, her hate makes sense. Things are messy and it is cool to see that
underlined in a sequel to one of the most incorrectly black and white morality
films ever made.
Noah there are lots of issues. The
timeline is all over the place, unlike in the first where the strange
(anachronistic) technology of the Persians are defeated in montage they are the
center piece of the film and if goofy steam punk battle is not your thing then
this will be boring, Eva Green is good but many might object to how sexually
and literally aggressive she is considering the historical figure she portrays
was cautious and levelheaded, one of the few Persian captains that was not
taken in by the Athenian naval trap that broke the Persian campaign. It is a strange movie, and years too late to
be an effective follow up (much like "Sin City 2: A Dame to Kill For"
which also came out this year, and is also a stylized Frank Miller story with a
topless sexually aggressive Eva Green as the star).
A decent poster in which it is about the movie, not a particular actor in it.
The best of
the Hobbit movies, so much so that it make s me like the others less. The movie has focus as the plot threads and
characters shown in the previous movies all start moving toward the ultimate
goal of controlling the golden horde beneath the Lonely Mountain. All of the principle characters, Bilbo,
Gandalf, Thorin, and Legolas get their moments to shine (I still consider the
addition of the elves to be beneficial to the story). The monsters are inventive and cool, the
various steeds of the heroes are cool, the armor, the ruins, nearly all of the
visuals work (yeah the CGI gets a bit much here and there but not as noticeably
as the last one). The heroic sacrifices are
good (not perfect, I was expecting Thorin's final action in the story to be a
bigger move), and the added weight of character death makes them movie hit
harder. The Elves are as always cool and
work perfectly, they are both generous, but have their own desires.
of course downsides, as I mentioned before Thorin's final battle while fine
could have been better, there is a scene in which the party of 13 dwarves
storms out of the mountain and rallies the dwarf army that is losing ground...
That makes no sense to me as they are not the Avengers, they are just 13 guys,
some of which are not warriors, but it turns the tide. Humans are woefully out gunned and rather
than cleverly beating back the bad guys they mostly just keep fighting and
inexplicably not dying. There are sections
in which a lot of proper nouns are thrown around.
also like to maintain that these movies should have been called "Middle
Earth" not "The Hobbit", and should have been marketed
differently. Peter Jackson should have
said, "We are going to use 'The Hobbit' as a framing device, but since
this will likely be the last movies set in this universe for this generation of
filmmakers, I saw it as both fun and necessary to explore other aspects of the
world. Lots of characters exist, and a lot of magic, action, and world is
there. If I don't put those things into
this movie, then it won't fit in anywhere.
Some people have talked about 'The Silmarillion' and I do not think it
would work, better to take what we have and put it in here where we can and
enjoy as much of the universe as possible with this story as a backbone." But they didn't do that and so we have people
complaining that there isn't enough story to fill three movies even though
these movies are packed with content.