Tagged: Stanley Tucci

Summary: A deadly threat from Earth’s history reappears, and a hunt for a lost artifact takes place between Autobots and Decepticons, while Optimus Prime encounters his creator in space.

Year: 2017

Australian Cinema Release Date: 21st June 2017

Australian DVD Release Date: 4th October 2017

Country: United States, China, Canada

Director: Michael Bay

Screenwriter: Matt Holloway, Art Marcum, Ken Nolan, Akiva Goldsman (story)

Cast: Erik Adahl (Bumblebee voice)), Daniel Adegboyega (Saebert), Gil Birmingham (Chief Sherman), Steve Buscemi (Daytrader voice)), Santiago Cabrera (Santos), Jerrod Carmichael (Jimmy), Jim Carter (Cogman voice)), Gemma Chan (Quintessa), Peter Cullen (Optimus Prime (voice)), John DiMaggio (Nitro Zeus/Crosshairs voice)), Josh Duhamel (Colonel William Lennox), Dino Fazzini (Alden), Marcus Fraser (Gawain), Rebecca Front (Aunt Marie), Liam Garrigan (Arthur), John Goodman (Hound voice)), Minti Gorne (Young Viviane), Laura Haddock (Vivian Wembley), Jess Harnell (Barricade voice)), Richard Hills Jnr. (Cheldric), John Hollingworth (Tristan), Sir Anthony Hopkins (Sir Edmund Barton), Tom Kenny (Wheels voice)), Jason Matthewson (Spenser), Martin McCreadie (Lancelot), Isabela Moner (Izabella), Glenn Morshower (General Morshower), Phoebe Nicholls (Aunt Helen), Allen Phoenix (Luke Reynolds), Jade Quon (Cogman), Trent Seven (Hengist), Omar Sy (Hot Rod voice)),  Stanley Tucci (Merlin), John Turturro (Agent Simmons), Mark Wahlberg (Cade Yaeger), Ken Watanabe (Drift voice)), Frank Welker (Megatron voice)), Reno Wilson (Mohawk/Sqweeks voice)), Rob Witcomb (Percival)

Runtime: 154 mins

Classification: PG

 

OUR TRANSFORMERS: THE LAST KNIGHT REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

Kyle McGrath’s Transformers: The Last Knight Review:

Despite his negative reputation as a filmmaker I consider myself to be a fan of a lot of Michael Bay’s films. Bad Boys, Pain & Gain, The Rock, 13 Hours and even Armageddon are all films I have enjoyed. He’s drawn the ire of some film fans however with films like Pearl Harbour (which I’ve not seen) and the incredibly popular Transformers franchise.

Transformers The Last Knight is the fifth film in the live action Transformers film series. Continuing on with new series protagonist from the previous film, Cade Yeager (Mark Wahlberg), this film sees the good autobots still lumped together with the villainous decepticons and outlawed by mankind in the wake of collateral damage which they seem to have brought to earth. Leader of the autobots, Optimus Prime, upon completing his long journey back to the Transformer’s home planet of Cybertron is captured by a new enemy with plans to use him in her plan to destroy earth.

The film proceeds more or less as anyone who has seen any the previous 4 films might expect. Having not fully enjoyed the series up til now I found myself once again disappointed in the development of the story, characters and the comedic relief which still comes off as inappropriate either in timing or in content (although perhaps not quite as bad this time as cutaway shots to dogs humping or John Turturro talking about robot testicles as we saw in the franchise’s second instalment).

The over the top action which Bay and this series are both known for of course returns as well. I must say that the mixing of CGI and live action which has always been impressive still excels if you stop to appreciate the movie on such a technical level.

That is if you can actually keep track of what is going on. I’m not sure if this has something to do with the film having 6 different editors but I felt like I was inside the head of a schizophrenic at times with how the movie is shot, edited and jumps from one plot thread to another.

Something I’ve noticed with the story of each of these films is that every single one of them presents a new revelation on how long Transformers have actually been on earth. They were here building the pyramids, they were the true reason for man walking on the moon, they were here with the dinosaurs and now they were instrumental in the legend of King Arthur. I believe these revelations are to make the audience not think that the world would be a much better place, and avoid periodical catastrophic events killing thousands, if the Transformers would simply leave. Each film needs a new reason for them to be here and after a while they’re starting to pile up on each other and conflict.

On top of that it means every film feels too heavy with exposition as this new reason needs to be explained though in such a way which won’t completely bore the fans who are there for the action. This is where the inappropriate timing of humour comes in as the movie can’t go too long without the equivalent of a pie in the face gag.

Characters both human and robotic are introduced and dropped frequently. Rather than focusing more on key players we’re aquatinted with more supporting characters who don’t appear to serve much of a purpose and disappear from the film before they do. John Turturro & Josh Duhamel both series regulars who were absent from the previous film round out the cast but again don’t do much.

This wouldn’t be too much of an issue but as a result the role of major characters like Vivian Wembley (Laura Haddock) seem rushed or are flat out absent from most of the film in the case of Optimus Prime or the leader of the decepticons, Megatron.

Optimus in particular whom I’ve never thought was handled well in any of the films barely makes an appearance til past the halfway mark then 10 minutes later he’s back to making these forced rallying speeches to motivate the troops to go into the final battle when he hasn’t earned the right to take on that leader role.

I think a problem with the Transformers film franchise for a lot of people has been the lack of genuine passion for what was going on. The films are visually stunning and often exhausting to watch as the staggering amount of man hours which have gone into creating them is clear to see. But at the same time they can feel hollow and boring.

When the recent Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles live action films, themselves produced by Michael Bay, were announced the details of changes to the established ideas of the property caused an uproar. In time this led to the decision to shift gears and so the sequel from the ground up was crafted with die hard fans of TMNT in mind. Familiar villains, heroes, monsters and even the theme song which any fan would know off by heart were included and I believe this made a much more enjoyable film in the process.

The Transformers films have never had this reinvention because they never really needed to being the franchise was always so popular despite negativity from some audiences. This sums up my thoughts on Transformers The Last Knight. If you have enjoyed the franchise up till now then you will definitely enjoy this latest addition. However, unlike with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows, I can’t think of a reason to recommend this sequel to anyone who has felt let down by the series up till now.

 

 

Average Subculture Rating:  

 

 

IMDB Rating:  Transformers: The Last Knight (2017) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment Transformers: The Last Knight Reviews: N/A

 

Trailer:

Beauty And The Beast

Disney have just released the trailer for their live-action version of Beauty & The Beast.

Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” is a live-action re-telling of the studio’s animated classic which refashions the classic characters from the tale as old as time for a contemporary audience, staying true to the original music while updating the score with several new songs. “Beauty and the Beast” is the fantastic journey of Belle, a bright, beautiful and independent young woman who is taken prisoner by a beast in his castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and learns to look beyond the Beast’s hideous exterior and realize the kind heart and soul of the true Prince within. The film stars: Emma Watson as Belle; Dan Stevens as the Beast; Luke Evans as Gaston, the handsome, but shallow villager who woos Belle; Oscar® winner Kevin Kline as Maurice, Belle’s eccentric, but lovable father; Josh Gad as Lefou, Gaston’s long-suffering aide-de-camp; Golden Globe® nominee Ewan McGregor as Lumiere, the candelabra; Oscar nominee Stanley Tucci as Maestro Cadenza, the harpsichord; Oscar nominee Ian McKellen as Cogsworth, the mantel clock; and two-time Academy Award® winner Emma Thompson as the teapot, Mrs. Potts.

Directed by Oscar® winner Bill Condon based on the 1991 animated film, “Beauty and the Beast” is produced by Mandeville Films’ David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman with eight-time Oscar-winning composer Alan Menken, who won two Academy Awards® (Best Original Score and Best Song) for the 1991 animated film, providing the score, which will include new recordings of the original songs written by Menken and Howard Ashman, as well as several new songs written by Menken and three-time Oscar winner Tim Rice. “Beauty and the Beast” will be released in U.S. theaters on March 17, 2017.

You can view the Beauty And The Beast trailer below:

 

The Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 1 Poster

Summary: Katniss Everdeen reluctantly becomes the symbol of a mass rebellion against the autocratic Capitol.

Year: 2014

Australian Cinema Release Date: 19th November, 2014

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Francis Lawrence

Screenwriter: Peter Craig, Danny Strong, Suzanne Collins (novel)

Cast: Mahershala Ali (Boggs), Elizabeth Banks (Effie Trinket), Wes Chatham (Castor), Sam Claflin (Finnick Odair), Stef Dawson (Annie Cresta), Natlie Dormer (Cressida), Michelle Forbes (Lieutenant Jackson), Michael Garza (Eddy), Woody Harrelson (Haymitch Abernathy), Liam Hemsworth (Gale Hawthorne), Elden Henson (Pollux), Philip Seymour Hoffman (Plutarch Heavensbee), Josh Hutcherson (Peeta Mellark), Robert Knepper (Antonius), Jennifer Lawrence (Katniss Everdeen), Jena Malone (Johanna Mason), Patina Miller (Commandor Paylor), Julianne Moore (President Alma Coin), Evan Ross (Messalla), Willow Shields (Primrose Everdeen), Donald Sutherland (President Snow), Jermaine Tindell (Luther), Stanley Tucci (Caesar Flickerman), Jeffrey Wright (Beetee)

Runtime: 123 mins

Classification: M

 

OUR THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART 1 REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

David Griffiths:

There is no way any filmmaker would envy director Francis Lawrence for the task ahead of him we he started his directorial duties on The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1. Just like David Yates (Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 1) and Bill Condon (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1) Lawrence has found himself with the extremely difficult task of making the first part of a two part novel adaption franchise both watchable and enjoyable.

It doesn’t sound like much a struggle but when you consider that a huge chunk of a first half of a novel is normally about character development and ‘setting up of the world’ if often means that the filmmakers are trying to turn something ultimately dull and technical into something watchable at the cinema. Both Yates and Condon struggled with their tasks the result being fans calling the Part 1 of the finales the weakest films of the franchise, even Peter Jackson didn’t seem up to the task with the first Hobbit film with some saying it was so dull it looked like a documentary about walking treks across New Zealand.

To his credit Lawrence has done an okay job with The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1, true it doesn’t have a lot of the action of the first two films but being the filmmaker that he has shown us he is with character studies like I Am Legend he decides to turn the tables on the franchise and go for a completely different tone this time around.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 picks up with Katniss (Jennifer Lawrence) recovering in District 13. Her second tour of the The Hunger Games arena has left her shell-shocked and an emotional wreck. At first her mental state makes her resist the offer from former double agent Plutarch Heavensbee (Philip Seymour Hoffman) and District 13 leader President Alma Coin (Julianne Moore) to be the face of the rebellion against the capital, the person who will unite all the Districts together.

However, shortly after seeing what the Capital soliders have done to home District Katniss soon teams up with Gale (Liam Hemsworth) and Finnick (Sam Claflin) to make ‘propaganda films’ to unite the people, which in turn becomes a battlefield role. Tension heightens more when it they begin to see the Capital interviews between Caesar Flickerman (Stanley Tucci) and Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) and now featuring Peeta telling people to end the rebellion, something that Katniss fears is a sick game orchestrated by President Snow (Donald Sutherland).

Lawrence’s different tone with this film is not a tone that all will enjoy. The last two Hunger Games films were loaded with action throughout, this film does not share that luxury. Instead the film becomes a real character piece but also deals with the impact that war has on the people involved. Katniss’ behaviour suggests that she is suffering from Post Traumatic Stress (although the term is never used), while the film’s look at propaganda on both sides of the war is possible not something that you would expect to find in a film that is based on teenage fiction.

The film does suffer from a lack of action though and as an audience you almost want to cheer during the occasional times when Katniss and Gale find themselves having to take some shots at enemy planes. The character studies are interesting enough in their own right but that isn’t what people have come to know and love from this franchise and at times you do feel sorry for Lawrence as a director because it does grind the film down to a virtual halt.

What Lawrence however can’t be forgiven for though is not bringing action to the screen when it could have been there. When Gale and crew go on their mission to rescue Peeta it was a moment when Lawrence really could have brought some action and suspense to the film, but unlike other moments during this franchise it just seemed to fall by the wayside and never reach the full tension that it could have.

The power of this franchise though is summed up though by the star power and talent of the actors that are drawn to take up roles in it. Philip Seymour Hoffman, Stanley Tucci and Woody Harrelson do the best with their limited screen time while the inclusion of Julianne Moore is interesting seeing her character doesn’t seem to do much except for look sullen and order people around. The young cast do a really good job though. Once again Jennifer Lawrence comes to the fore as the damaged Katniss while Liam Hemsworth plays mopey extremely well. The weaker script this time around though means though it is only really Jennifer Lawrence who gets a chance to shine this time around.

Despite Francis Lawrence’s attempt to change the tone of this film compared to others in the franchise it is easy to see that the film is weaker than its predecessors and the annoying part is you get the feeling that this film is about to explode into a climatic finale, which raises the question should the production company behind the film have just given up the extra cash and made this a near on three hour finale and give both the screenwriters and director at hand a fair chance. Still it is better than most of the other teen-fic films going around but it really does feel like a film that is only going to be enjoyed by those who are hardened fans of the franchise to date.

Stars(3)

 

Average Subculture Rating (out of 5):  Stars(3)

 

IMDB Rating: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 (2014) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 reviews: You can also read Dave’s The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 review on The Book The Film The T-Shirt.

Trailer:

Gone Girl PosterSo who was talking about what on the net this week. These are the most popular movies and television shows on the net this week.

1. Gone Girl (2014): Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, Tyler perry

2. American Horror Story (2012) : Evan Peters, Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Frances Conroy

3. Annabelle (2014): Ward Horton, Annabelle Wallis, Alfre Woodard, Tony Amendola

4 Dracula Untold (2014): Luke Evans, Dominic Cooper, Sarah Gadon, Art Parkinson

5. The Walking Dead (2010): Andrew Lincoln, Jon Bernthal, Sarah Wayne Callies, Steven Yuen

6. The Maze Runner (2014): Dylan O’Brien, Kaya Scodelario, Will Poulter, Thomas Brodie Sangster

7. The Avengers: Age Of Ultron (2015): Robert Downey Jnr, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth

8. The Equalizer (2014): Denzel Washington, Marton Csokas, Chloe Grace Moretz, David Harbour

9. Gotham (2014): Ben McKenzie, Donal Logue, David Mazouz, Sean Pertwee

10. Once Upon A Time (2011): Gennifer Goodwin, Jennifer Morrison, Lana Parrilla, Josh Dallas

11. The Flash (2014): Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker, Rick Cosnett

12. Arrow (2012): Stephen Amell, Katie Cassidy, David Ramsey, Susanna Thompson

13. Transformers: Age Of Extinction (2014): Mark Wahlberg, Nicola Peltz, Jack Reynor, Stanley Tucci

14. Game Of Thrones (2011): Lena headey, Peter Dinklage, Maisie Williams, Emilia Clarke

15. Supernatural (2005): Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, Jim Beaver, Misha Collins

16. Batman vs Superman: Dawn Of Justice (2016): Ben Affleck, Amy Adams, Henry Cavill, Jason Momoa

17. Fury (2014): Brad Pitt, Shia LaBeouf, Logan Lerman, Michal Pena

18. Lucy (2014): Scarlett Johansson, Morgan Freeman, Min-sik Choi, Amr Waked

19. Sons Of Anarchy (2008): Charlie Hunnam, Katey Sagal, Mark Boone Junior, Tommy Flanagan

20. Homeland (2011): Claire Danes, Mandy Patinkin, Damian Lewis, Morena Baccarin

21. Horns (2013): Daniel Radcliffe, Juno Temple, Heather Graham, Kelli Garnder

22. Guardians Of The Galaxy (2014): Chris Pratt, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Zoe Saldana

23. Sex Tape (2014): Jason Segal, Cameron Diaz, Rob Corddry, Ellie Kemper

24. Left Behind (2014): Nicolas Cage, Lea Thompson, Cassi Thomson, Chad Michael Murray

25. The Judge (2014): Robert Downey Jnr, Robert Duvall, Vera Farmiga, Billy Bob Thornton

Transformers Age Of Extinction 3

Before you head out to see Transformers Age Of Extinction make sure you check out this featurette which takes a look at the cars that make up the Autobots.

Directed by Michael Bay, TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION stars Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci, Kelsey Grammer, Jack Reynor, Nicola Peltz, Sophia Myles, TJ Miller, Han Geng and Li Bingbing and is in cinemas now.

 

Transformers Age Of Extinction 2

The hugely anticipated new film TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION grossed a stunning USD$300 million at the global box office this weekend.

 In Australia, the film scored the highest opening weekend of 2014 with a final tally of over AUD$10 million. The film opened to number one in the U.S. with a stellar USD$100 million and it broke box-office records in China grossing USD$90 million, the biggest weekend debut of all time for an international movie in that territory.

With just 37 international markets opened to-date, the juggernaut will continue to roll out in Europe and Latin America following the World Cup.

Directed by Michael Bay, TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION stars Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci, Kelsey Grammer, Jack Reynor, Nicola Peltz, Sophia Myles, TJ Miller, Han Geng and Li Bingbing.

Mr Peabody & Sherman

Summary: Using his invention the WABAC machine, Mr. Peabody and Sherman go back in time to experience world-changing events and interact with some of the greatest characters of all time.

Year: 2014

Australian Cinema Release Date: 27th March, 2014

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Rob Minkoff

Screenwriter: Craig Wright, Robert Ben Garant, Thomas Lennon, Michael McCullers, Jay Ward (series creator)

Cast: Jasper Johannes Andrews (Baby Sherman (voice)), Guillaume Aretos (Robespierre (voice)), Lake Bell (Mona Lisa (voice)), Leila Birch (WABAC Machine (voice)), Karan Brar (Mason (voice)), Mel Brooks (Albert Einstein (voice)), Ty Burell (Mr. Peabody (voice)), Zach Callison (King Tut (voice)), Max Charles (Sherman (voice)), Stephen Colbert (Paul Peterson (voice)),  Walt Dohrn (Spartacus/French Peasant/Taxi Driver (voice)), Lauri Fraser (Marie Antoniette/Egyptian Woman (voice)), Jess Harnell (Abraham Lincoln/George Washington/Bill Clinton/Isaac Newton/New York City Cop (voice)), Allison Janney (Ms. Grunion (voice)), Tom McGrath (Odysseus (voice)), Pautrice A. Musick (Teacher (voice)), Al Rodrigo (Ajax (voice)), Joshua Rush (Carl (voice)), Stephen Tobolowsky (Principal Purdy (voice)), Stanley Tucci (Leonardo da Vinci (voice)), Steve Valentine (Ay (voice)),  Patrick Warburton (Agamemnon (voice)), Ariel Winter (Penny Peterson (voice))

Runtime: 97 mins

Classification:PG

OUR MR. PEABODY & SHERMAN REVIEWS & RATINGS:

Greg King:

To see Greg’s Mr. Peabody & Sherman review please go to www.filmreviews.net.au.

Stars(3.5)

Average Subculture Rating (out of 5): Stars(3.5)

IMDB Rating:  Mr. Peabody & Sherman (2014) on IMDb

Other Subculture Media Mr Peabody & Sherman reviews: For our full Mr Peabody & Sherman review please check The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #73.

Trailer:

The Hunger games Catching Fire Poster

Summary: Katniss and Peeta are dethroned from their respective victory riches and are put back into the arena for the most climatic and menacing of the Hunger Games, known as the Quarter Quell.

Year: 2013

Australian Cinema Release Date: 21st November, 2013

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Francis Lawrence

Screenwriter: Simon Beaufoy, Michael Arndt, Suzanne Colllins (novel)

Cast: Nelson Ascencio (Flavius), Elizabeth Banks (Effie Trinket), Bruce Bundy (Octavia), John Casino (Woof), Sam Clafin (Finnick Odair), Lynn Cohen (Mags), Rita Conte (Hob), Stef Dawson (Annie Cresta), Rode Ferland (Marcus), Wilbur Fitzgerald (Cray), Meta Golding (Enobaria), Bruno Gunn (Brutus), Woody Harrelson (Haymitch Abernathy), Megan Hayes (Female Morphling),, Liam Hemsworth (Gale Hawthorne), Philip Seymour Hoffman (Plutarch Heavensbee), Maria Howell (Seeder), Josh Hutcherson (Peeta Mellark), Toby Jones (Claudius Templesmith), Bobby Jordan (Blight), Lenny Kravitz (Cinna), Sandra Ellis Lafferty (Greasy Sae), Jennifer Lawrence (Katniss Everdeen), Jena Malone (Johanna Mason), E. Roger Mitchell (Chaff), Amanda Plummer (Wiress), Jack Quaid (Marvel), Alan Ritchson (Gloss), Elena Sanchez (Cecelia), Stephanie Leigh Schlund (Cashmere), Willow Shields (Primrose Everdeen), Taylor St. Clair (Ripper), Patrick St. Esprit (Commander Thread), Donald Sutherland (President Snow), Stanley Tucci (Caesar Flickerman), Jeffrey Wright (Beetee)

Runtime: 146 mins

Classification:M

OUR THE HUNGER GAMES: CATCHING FIRE REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

Adam Ross: You can read Adam’s full The Hunger Games: Catching Fire review on The Crat.

Stars(4)

 

Nick Gardener: You can read Nick’s full The Hunger Games: Catching Fire review on Southern FM

Stars(4)

 

David Griffiths:

The original “The Hunger Games” film left audiences in the middle. On one hand it was a better teenage genre flick than the later “Twilight Saga” films, but on the other hand the fact it was aimed at a younger audience meant that director Gary Ross held back on some of the darker elements that were portrayed in the novel.

Now comes “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” the difficult second film in the trilogy. Some three-part franchises choke when it comes to the second film, the film does nothing to bridge the first to the third film and becomes a dull affair for the audience. That certainly can’t be said for “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” that equals the original film and overcomes a couple of flaws by director Francis Lawrence’s (“Water For Elephants,” “I Am Legend”) decision to allow the film to find its dark side.

Following the series of novels by Suzanne Collins “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” is set twelve months after the original film. The young hero Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence – “The Devil You Know,” “Silver Linings Playbook”) is back living in District 12, although this time she is the nicer diggings of the Victor’s Village. Life is far from easy for her though as Katniss is forced to live a double life. Behind closed doors she is sorting out her feelings for good friend Gale Hawthorne (Liam Hemsworth – “Paranoia,” “Empire State”) while in public her fake relationship with fellow Hunger Games winner Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson – “Epic,” “Red Dawn”) must continue.

On the eve of joining the promotional train for the 75th Annual Hunger Games Katniss’ life is further turned upside down when she learns that her’s and Peter’s actions have seen them become the face of a threatened revolution. After a threat from President Snow (Donald Sutherland – “Jappeloup,” “The Best Offer”) Katniss realises that she must ‘tow the line’ but with that not working she soon finds her and Peter having to team up with Haymitch Abernathy (Woody Harrelson – “Out Of The Furnace,” “Free Birds”) to survive a new game thought up by Snow and his new right-hand man Plutarch Heavensbee (Philip Seymour Hoffman – “A Late Quartet,” “The Master”).

Francis Lawrence does push the boundaries of this franchise a little more. He makes it a bit bloodier and even enhances the metaphor of Snow’s regime being similar to Nazi Germany but sadly Lawrence and his cinematographer Jo Willems (“Gotham,” “Limitless”) leave the audience a little underwhelmed with the film awash with a bland look.

Still that doesn’t put too much of a dampener on the film because the story really does come to the forefront. This film raising the stakes for most of the main characters certainly brings more suspense to the screen and despite some badly signposted areas of the film there are enough unexpected twists and turns to warrant the audience paying full attention. Unlike most teenage franchises you also get the feeling that this is one series that isn’t too afraid to kill off main characters if the story calls for that, at the end of the day that just enhances the suspense even more.

One disappointing thing about “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” is that Josh Hutcherson and Jennifer Lawrence just seem to breeze through their performances. Lawrence has shown in films like “Winter’s Bone” and “Silver Linings Playbook” that she is one of the finest young actresses going around but she never really gets to show those skills this time around. A real waste of an Oscar winner if I’ve ever seen one.

Liam Hemsworth also doesn’t get any decent screen time but Donald Sutherland is rewarded for his patience with the first film with the chance to really sink his teeth into a really menacing role… something that he seems to grasp with two hands. But stealing the show are Woody Harrelson and Stanley Tucci (“The Fifth Estate,” “Percy Jackson: Sea Of Monsters”). Harrelson continues to remind audiences what a fine actor he is with his great portrayal of the alcoholic Haymitch while Tucci shows his versatility by showboating as the energetic master-of-ceremonies Caesar.

There is no doubt that Francis Lawrence certainly lifts this franchise to a different level with his darker approach to “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.” Sure there will be some out there that simply want to put the film down because it is part of a popular franchise but truthfully this is fairly decent film that certainly isn’t a waste of time to take a look at.

 Stars(3)

Average Subculture Rating (out of 5): Stars(3)

IMDB Rating:  The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013) on IMDb

Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire′: You can also read Dave’s The Hunger Games: Catching Fire review on The Book The Film The T-Shirt.

Trailer:

Transformers Age of Extinction

 

Here it is Transformers fans – the Transformers Age of Extinction teaser trailer has just been released.

Transformers: Age Of Extinction is directed by Michael Bay and stars Mark Wahlberg, Kelsey Grammer and Stanley Tucci. It will be released in the U.S. on 27th June, 2014.

You can check out the Transformers Age Of Extinction teaser trailer below.

Transformers Age Of Extinction

Ready for the Transformers: Age Of Extinction first look? Well hear it is.

Transformers: Age Of Extinction is directed by Michael Bay and stars Mark Wahlberg, Nicola Peltz, Jack Raynor, Stanley Tucci and Kelsey Grammer. It opens in the U.S. on the 27th June, 2014.

Check out you Transformers: Age Of Extinction first look below.