Tagged: Thomas Mann

Summary: After the Vietnam war, a team of scientists explores an uncharted island in the Pacific, venturing into the domain of the mighty Kong, and must fight to escape a primal Eden.

Year: 2017

Australian Cinema Release Date: 10th March 2017

Australian DVD Release Date: 19th July 2017

Country: United States, China

Director: Jordan Vogt-Roberts

Screenwriter: Max Borenstein, Derek Connolly, Dan Gilroy, John Gatins (story), Merian C. Cooper (characters), Edgar Wallace (characters)

Cast: Will Brittain (Young Marlow/Marlow’s Son), James Michael Connor (General Ward (voice), Eugene Cordero (Reles), James Edward Flynn (Sgt. Dren), John Goodman (Bill Randa), Corey Hawkins (Houston Brooks), Tom Hiddleston (James Conrad), Mark Evan Jackson (Landsat Steve), Samuel L. Jackson (Preston Packard), Richard Jenkins (Senator Willis), Tian Jing (San), Rachel Joseph (Iwi), Toby Kebbell (Jack Chapman/Kong), Brie Larson (Mason Weaver), Thomas Mann (Slivko), Thomas Middleditch (Jerry (voice)), Jason Mitchell (Mills), Miyavi (Gunpei Ikari), Terry Notary (Kong), John Oritz (Victor Nieves), Allen Rachel (Secretary O’Brien), John C. Reilly (Hank Marlow), Shea Whigham (Cole)

Runtime: 118 mins

Classification: PG

 

OUR KONG: SKULL ISLAND REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

Kyle McGrath’s Kong: Skull Island Review:

The second film in Legendary Pictures “MonsterVerse” Kong: Skull Island is the story of a team of soldiers, scientists and explorers who at the end of the Vietnam war set off to an uncharted island in the Pacific. Almost immediately they encounter the wrath of the mighty King Kong who destroying their military helicopters leave them stranded on Skull Island. The survivors must traverse this unknown land to reach their originally planned evacuation point completely unaware that there are things on this island much worse than a 100 foot tall monkey.
I thoroughly enjoyed 2014’s Godzilla. While I thought the movie had some issues I feel it captured the perfect tone and representation of the titular King of the Monsters. I had heard about Kong: Skull Island from one source that it didn’t take itself too seriously and then from another that it took itself too seriously. After seeing the film I think it’s a mixture of both and it isn’t alway pretty.
From the beginning the filmmakers attempts to make “Apocalypse Now but with monsters” comes off as comedic. The opening scene which itself is set at the height of WW2 as both a US and Japanese soldier crash land on the island and duke it out before being interrupted by Kong feels more like a parody than anything. I was seriously expecting it to turn out to be “golden age of Hollywood” crew making some schlocky movie as a reference to the storylines of other “King Kong” films before being attacked. But no, this is the tone of the movie, rather than awe or drama I’m expecting a punchline and usually getting one from one of the movie’s many comedy relief moments. At a moment of high tension as Kong is about to eat some unfortunate soldier it jump cuts to a man biting into a sandwich. This is comedy stuff and drives a steamroller through any tension the film has built up and turns it into a joke.
The other serious moments, or attempts at serious moments come from the characters mostly, all of whom are non entities. There are simply way too many characters in this movie and not enough plot to go around to flesh them all out in 2 hours. One of the shortcomings of Peter Jackson’s King Kong (2005) was the amount of time early on spent on supporting characters who either weren’t going to make it or weren’t going to be relevant at all by the halfway point.
Their stories felt genuine at least however. Here every other character has some monologue about their past. They talk about writing letters to their mama back home, or their newborn son they’ve never seen or they reminisce about some village they obliterated in ‘nam. All of it feels so melodramatic and ridiculous, again like it came from a parody film such as Black Dynamite and it comes from characters who probably shouldn’t be in the movie at all as their only purpose is to be fodder for some beastie or in some cases not even that. I know it’s complaining about “forced diversity” or “trying to appeal to the Chinese audience” in movies is low hanging fruit but it helps if in a movie your writers give a black guy and a Chinese girl something more substantial to do than just exist, follow the main characters around and talk to each other every now and then to remind us they’re there.
All of this damages the movie. I don’t care about the plot or Samuel L Jackson’s Colonel Kurtz-surrogate insane military commander because so much screen time is dedicated to redundancies. I would say it feels like a movie that has had 30 minutes of story cut out of it if it wasn’t for the low quality of what IS in the movie telling me otherwise.
Now while the actual monster on monster action fares much better and let’s be honest that’s what people came to see even that I found to be harmed by the need at comedy relief. We’re told about “Skull Crawlers”, the REAL threat on the island and what our hero Kong is up against, in a scene which needs to be interrupted for some jokes from long marooned soldier John C. Reilly told in exactly such a fashion that you’d expect from him. The result is on par with a Bond villain slipping on a banana peel in the middle of his master plan speech to James.
That said fans of the genre may get more out of this movie than out of Godzilla 2014. Purely from the fact that while in that film the filmmakers wished to hide the monsters from us as much as possible, here they can’t seem to wait to show it to us.
The film is what it is, a monster themed popcorn movie with cheesy comedy, wafer thin characters and story and 100 foot ape. I do believe that much more could have been done with it however if the filmmakers just knew more what tone they wished to take and story they wanted to tell. The film is tries to mix serious moments with comedy but comes off more like Hot Shots 2 than Mash.

 

 

Average Subculture Rating:  

 

 

IMDB Rating:  Kong: Skull Island (2017) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment Kong: Skull Island Reviews: N/A

 

Trailer:

Beautiful Creatures

Summary: A supernatural love story set in the South, Beautiful Creatures tells the tale of two star-crossed lovers: Ethan (Alden Ehrenreich), a young man longing to escape his small town, and Lena (Alice Englert), a mysterious new girl. Together, they uncover dark secrets about their respective families, their history and their town.

Year: 2013

Australian Cinema Release Date: 21st February, 2013

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Richard LaGravenese

Screenwriter: Richard LaGravenese, Kami Garcia (novel), Margaret Stohl (novel)

Cast: Bryan Adrian (Billy), Eileen Atkins (Gramma), Camille Balsamo (Katherine Duchannes), Tiffany Boone (Savannah Snow), Beau Brasseaux (Caster Shades), Richard Brosnahan (Genevieve Duchannes), Leslie Castay (Principal Herbert), Lindsay Clift (Althea Duchannes), Milton Crosby (Earl), Viola Davis (Amma), Zoey Deutch (Emily Asher), Alden Ehrenreich (Ethan Wate), Alice Englert (Lena Duchannes), J.D. Evermore (Mitchell Wate), Lucy Faust (Juliette Duchannes), Andrea Frankle (Lila Wate), Kyle Gallner (Larkin Ravenwood), Sam Gilroy (Ethan Carter Wate), Cindy Hogan (Mrs. Asher), Jeremy Irons (Macon Ravenwood), Thomas Mann (Link), Margo Martindale (Aunt Del), Treston Miles (Emory), Gwendolyn Mulamba (Mrs. Snow), Lance E. Nichols (Mayor Snow), Philippe Radelet (Suttler), Randy Redd (Revered Stephens), Emmy Rossum (Ridley Duchannes), Robin Skye (Mrs. Hester), Emma Thompson (Mrs. Lincoln/Sarafine), Jackie Tuttle (Isobel Duchannes), Pruitt Taylor Vince (Mr. Lee), Justine Wachsberger (Justine Duchannes), Teri Wyble (Charlotte Duchannes)

Runtime: 124 mins

Classification:M

Dave Griffiths’s ‘Beautiful Creatures’ Review: 

If you’ve seen all the publicity around ‘Beautiful Creatures’ you’ll know that it is supposed to be the replacement film for all of those who have been in mourning since both the ‘Twilight’ and ‘Harry Potter’ franchises have come to a close. The sad fact is however that ‘Beautiful Creatures’ is so bad that it doesn’t deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as the other films.

Based on the semi-successful series of novels by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl ‘Beautiful Creatures’ follows Ethan Wate (Alden Ehrenreich – ‘Twixt’, ‘Stoker’) a young literature obsessed high school student who since the death of his beloved mother and dreamt of the day that he can escape from Gatlin, South Carolina instead of wasting his days away in a dead-water town with his best friend, Link (Thomas Mann – ‘Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters’, ‘Fun Size’).

Then suddenly Gatlin is made a little bit brighter by the arrival of Lena Duchannes (Alice Englert – ‘In Fear’, ‘Ginger & Rosa’) who is sent to live with her mysterious uncle Macon Ravenwood (Jeremy Irons – ‘Night Train To Lisbon’, ‘The Words’). The religious townsfolk have always been critical of the family for years believing that they practice in witchcraft and they instantly decide that Lena should leave especially after an incident that sees Emily Asher (Zoey Deutsch – TV’S ‘Ringer’, TV’S ‘Switched At Birth’) and Savannah Snow (Tiffany Boone – TV’S ‘Unmatchable’, TV’S ‘Suburgatory’) injured.

When Lena finally allows Ethan close to her he learns that she is a caster (fancy name for witch) but that she is scared that on her sixteenth birthday she may turn dark like the other females in her family, something that family members Sarafine (Emma Thompson – ‘Brave’, ‘Men In Black 3’) and Ridley (Emmy Rossum – TV’S ‘Inside’, TV’S ‘Shameless’) are counting on happening. And while it appears that it is written in stone that doesn’t stop Lena, Ethan, Macon and local ‘seer’ Amma (Viola Davis – ‘Won’t Back Down’, ‘Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close’) from trying to prevent it from happening.

It is surprising just how bad ‘Beautiful Creatures’ really is. It is obvious that Summit Entertainment wanted to re-create the success they gained with ‘Twilight’ and they have obviously directed screenwriter/director Richard LaGravenese (‘P.S. I Love You’, ‘Freedom Writers’) to make this film as similar to their blockbuster as he could. Sadly though this brings the film completely undone, the soundtrack and the leading lady that looks like she could be Kristen Stewart’s sister almost make the film seem like a parody.

Also adding to the parody feeling are some of the cheesy moments during the film that actually have the audience laughing at instead of with the film… actually some of those moments are so bad there may be a few groans as well as laughs. LaGravenese then drags the film down even further when he tries to introduce some ‘Dark Shadows’ style comedy into a film that really should have been a supernatural horror in the vein of ‘The Craft’.

Sadly the producers of ‘Beautiful Creatures’ couldn’t even get the casting right for the film. Emma Thompson and Jeremy Irons pretty much embarrass themselves in roles that could really tarnish their careers while Alden Ehrenreich is far too old to be playing a teenage romantic lead. And as for Alice Englert well she shouldn’t be giving up her TV work anytime soon because her performance here certainly won’t be having Hollywood producers knocking on her door.

No matter how much of a fan of the genre you are ‘Beautiful Creatures’ is the kind of film that you really need to avoid. This is one of 2013’s shockers… Golden Razzie nominations are sure to follow.

Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Beautiful Creatures′: Check Episode #21 of our The Good The Bad The Ugly Podcast for a more in-depth review of ‘Beautiful Creatures’. Dave Griffiths also has another review of ‘Beautiful Creatures’ available on the Helium Entertainment Channel.

Rating: 2/5

IMDB Rating:Beautiful Creatures (2013) on IMDb

Hansel & Gretel Witch Hunters

Summary: After getting a taste for blood as children, Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and Gretel (Gemma Arterton) have become the ultimate vigilantes, hell bent on retribution. Now, unbeknownst to them, Hansel and Gretel have become the hunted, and must face an evil far greater than witches… their past.

Year: 2013

Australian Cinema Release Date: 7th February, 2013

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA, Germany

Director: Tommy Wirkola

Screenwriter: Tommy Wirkola

Cast: Gemma Arterton (Gretel), Rainer Bock (Mayor Engleman), Alea Sophia Boudodimos (Young Gretel), Robin Atkin Downes (Edward (voice)), Cedric Eich (Young Hansel), Famke Janssen (Muriel), Kathrin Kuhnel (Adrianna), Jeppe Laursen (Tracker William), Thomas Mann (Ben), Derek Mears (Edward), Jeremy Renner (Hansel), Christian Rubeck (Tracker Jonathan), Peter Stormare (Sherriff Berringer), Bjorn Sundquist (Jackson), Phila Viitala (Mina), Lucy Ella von Scheele (Mary Behlmer)

Runtime: 88 mins

Classification:MA15+

Dave Griffiths’s ‘Hansel And Gretel: Witch Hunters’ Review: 

To read Dave’s review of ‘Hansel And Gretel: Witch Hunters’ review please check the Helium Entertainment Channel

Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Hansel And Gretel: Witch Hunters′: Check Episode #19 of our The Good The Bad The Ugly Podcast for a more in-depth review of ‘Hansel And Gretel: Witch Hunters’.

Rating: 2.5/5

IMDB Rating:Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters (2013) on IMDb

Fun Size

Summary: Wren (Victoria Justice) is on the verge of moving into the high school popularity stratosphere when she is asked to go to a Halloween party with the coolest guy in school. The only thing standing in her way is her style-cramping 8 year old brother who may just turn out to be even cooler than her date.

Year: 2012

Australian Cinema Release Date: 29th November, 2012

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Josh Schwartz

Screenwriter: Max Werner

Cast: Osric Chau (Peng), Patrick de Ledebur (Mike Puglio), Jeremy Isaiah Earl (Officer Savage), Abby Elliott (Lara), Annie Fitzpatrick (Mrs. Brueder), Ana Gasteyer (Jackie), Stefan Gatt (Hulk), Chelsea Handler (Joy), Victoria Justice (Wren), Kerri Kenney (Barb), Johnny Knoxville (Jorgen), Brandon Landers (Buddy D), Mariana Lessa (Lica), Jane Levy (April), Thomas Mann (Roosevelt), Thomas McDonell (Aaron Riley), Thomas Middleditch (Fuzzy), Jackson Nicoll (Albert), Holmes Osbourne (Mr. Brueder), Josh Pence (Keevin), Maria Perossa (Hailey), James Pumphrey (Brueder), Erin Scerbak (Andrea), Morgane Slemp (Melinda), Rachel Sterling (Kassi), Peter Navy Tuiasosopo (Mr. Mahani), Lori Pelenise Tuisano (Mrs. Mahani), Nicholas Varricchio (Jonathan), Allison Weissman (Mackenzie), Krista Marie Yu (Jordan)

Runtime: 86 mins

Classification:PG

Dave Griffiths’s ‘Fun Size’ Review: 

For Dave’s review please check http://www.helium.com/items/2396537-fun-size-review.

Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Fun Size′: Check Episode #10 of our The Good The Bad The Ugly Podcast for a more in-depth review of ‘Fun Size’

Rating: 1/5

IMDB Rating: Fun Size (2012) on IMDb