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Cruise Flies back in Top Gun Maverick-Mini-Review

Posted by THE SNAKE on June 5, 2022 at 10:15 AM Comments comments (0)

 Hi All , Yes I'm back with another Mini-review for yet another blockbuster film. This time we take to the skies with Top Gun Maverick.

Starring Tom Cruise

Jennifer Connelly

Val Kilmer

Ed Harris

Miles Teller

Glen Powell

 

Director JOSEPH KOSINSKI



 

Top Gun Maverick

 

Yes the KITG crew once more ventured into the void of cinematography.

This time we were viewing what many consider to be lightning in a bottle that has struck twice.

 

Tom Cruise returns as Pete 'Maverick' Mitchell from the classic 1986 film directed by the late Tony Scott.

 

Cruise has wanted to do a sequel to the film for years and Tony Scott even had a script in the works before his untimely death in 2012.

 

Now I never saw the original Top Gun at the cinema and my viewing back in the day was at home on VHS on a 20inch CRT tv.

 

It was the time of the VHS boom and we rented films consistently.

So we never got the scope of the film from watching it on the big screen.

Unlike today where you at home you have large screen TV's and HD and 4K resolution.

 

But hearing how the film was made, and my home projector set up not up and running as of yet. We chose to see the film on the big screen at the cinema.

 

I was excited to see the aerial stunts of the planes, all the actors had to go through a rigorous training regime and learn to operate cameras and direct themselves within the plane's cockpits for the aerial scenes.





 

Yes no CGI here folks, these are real planes you are watching here.

 

This is what makes the film a must-see at the cinema.

The story is simple, Maverick ( Cruise) is still in the Navy air force but as a Test Pilot for new planes, he has gone through various problems in his career, always blowing his chance of promotion.

 

When he makes one truly big mess and has to bail out of an expensive test jet he faces dismissal.

 

But to his bewilderment, he is ordered back to Top Gun.

Upon arriving he learns they need him for a mission of utmost importance.

What he does not know is that his job is to train the latest high-flying Top Guns to carry out this mission.

 

The film runs about two hours and twenty minutes. And amazingly it goes quite fast, the emphasis here is on the action and everything moves at a faster pace than in the original which did have a bigger segment of romance within it I remember.

 

For this film, it was mostly new faces and a fresh start, Kelly McGillis and Meg Ryan were never approached to reprise their roles. Though they do appear in a memory from footage of the first film.

 

Maverick has a new love interest, an old flame played by Jennifer Connelly.

 

The star of the film is the fantastic aerial scenes and the tensions between Maverick and his potential students.

 

Val Kilmer reprises his role as ICE from the first film, who now is an Admiral.

 

Tom Cruise continues to make box office hits and chooses his films carefully, unlike so many others.

 

You know if it's a Tom Cruise film it will deliver.

 

We enjoyed our time with the film. The story is tight and the action comes thick and fast, it was nice to see a film with a feel-good factor that harked back to the 80s when films were about fun and action with real-life pyrotechnics, and explosions and all..

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Too many films rely on the whole CGI thing now because actors and actresses don't want to get dirty.

But here Cruise delivers and proves you can still make a fun action film with a story where real actors do real stunts without a computer in sight.

And for this Top Gun Maverick must be commended.

 

Up to date, Top Gun Maverick has become the sixth highest-grossing film of 2022.

Whether it can surpass its predecessor which cost a mere $15 Million to make and made back a staggering $357.3 million we will have to wait and see.

 

But as Maverick cost a cool $170 million to make and can not see the same mega success. In effect, Maverick would have to take $3.9 Billion to match the original Ratio.

 

View Date: 31st May 2022

Location: Cineworld, Stevenage

 

Review By: Sertes Nake




Dr Strange in the Multiverse of Madness-Mini-Review

Posted by THE SNAKE on May 25, 2022 at 2:50 PM Comments comments (0)

 Yes I'm back with another Mini-review, this time of one of this summers Blockbuster films. As the Marvel Cinematic Universe expands we here at KITG try to get our heads round all the stories.

So without further ado,enjoy the review.


 

 



Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness- 2022

 

Yes, another Mini-review for you all, once again the KITG crew ventured out to see the second in the Doctor Strange movies by Marvel, and the 28th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

 

Now I for one have seen most of the Marvel films over the years, but there are a few that I have not yet, add to this the fact that Marvel also makes TV streaming series of some characters which all fall in line with the Universe of Marvel and it makes it quite hard to remember or know of each character.

 

If you have missed a film or two and not seen all the series it can make key elements of the story within these films pass you by as you may have not seen that particular previous film or TV series.

 

So I went into the film with the hope to be able to unravel all the stories and fill in the blanks about what I may have missed.

 

This time we have Doctor Strange suffering from dreams/nightmares, whatever you may call them.

 

When he attends the wedding of his close friend Christine he witnesses demon-like spirits wrecking the city and going after a young girl.

 

Being the superhero he is, he intervenes to save the girl after going through a series of death-defying confrontations with said demons.

 

After saving the girl who happens to be very wary of him, he discovers his dreams are not just dreams but real happenings in an alternate reality and universe.

 

This becomes more apparent when the young girl presents to him the dead body of himself from another universe...

 

His goal is to help the girl and find out what these demons want.

 

He turns to an old colleague by the name of Wanda Maximoff aka Scarlet Witch.

He tells Wanda his situation in a bid she may help.

 

Like any Marvel universe film, the film starts and ends with huge CGI effects and battles across universes against unfathomable foes.

 

To get to the truth Doctor Strange must travel to various universes to uncover the reason behind all the wanton destruction.

 

He encounters his own self in various forms and has to also confront allies that are foes in his own Universe and vice versa.

 

It does give many cast members different characterisations to unravel within the same character.

 

Unlike something like Shang Chi where you may marvel at the choreography of the Martial arts action, most Marvel Universe films are just big CGI showcases with actors going through the motions in front of Green screens while special effects are added after.

 

We enjoyed our time with Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and I suppose in the end the real stars of the film are the computer geniuses behind all the effects.

 

Though the actors do give a believable performance considering for the most part they do all this in plain studios.

 

For myself, I don't usually rush to see any of the Marvel films on the big screen as there all pretty much the same, all delivering the same kind of movie with different characters.

 

But as I like Benedict Cumberbatch and have seen him perform some real amazing acting in other films I didn't mind going to see this one as I regard the first Doctor Strange Movie as one of the better films from the Marvel catalog.

 

At nearly two and half hours it goes quite quickly as the action comes thick and fast.

And as a switch of your brain action fodder, it's quite fun.

 

View Date: 23-05-2022

Location: ODEON Luxe

Review Date: 24-05-2022

 

Review By: Sertes Nake




 


Where have another couple of Mini-reviews soon as we have arranged to see another couple of films on the big screen in the coming month?

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Director: Sam Raimi

Starring

Benedict Cumberbatch as Dr.Stephen Strange

Rahcel McAdams as Christine Palmer

Elizabeth Olsen – as the Scarlet Witch

Benedict Wong -Wong

Chiwetel Ejiofor as Karl Mordo

 

Patrick Stewart as Professor Charles Xavier


Image Copyright (c) Marvel Studios 2022


Mini-Review - The Northman 2022-Alexander Skarsgard

Posted by THE SNAKE on May 21, 2022 at 1:45 PM Comments comments (0)

 


The Northman - 2022 - Director :Robert Eggers

 

Hi, all here we have a mini-review of a film the KITG crew ventured out to see the other night.

 

Though the film has a fair bit of battling it is also quite in-depth in its depiction of the Viking age.

 

Based on a legend of a Viking by the name of Amieth. Set around 895AD.

 

Set in the lands of Rus, Iceland, and Norway the film follows the life of a young Viking Prince Amieth.

 

The young Prince witness the death of his father and vows revenge whilst escaping.

 

The film shifts a few years and Amieth is a warrior who was raised by Vikings that saved him and taught him the art of the Berserker, basically, a badass muscle-bound lunatic who slices through his foes with a ferocity unequaled.

 

With a runtime of just over two and a quarter hours, the film is no flash in the pan and its pacing at times can be a bit slow. The beginning starts off like an art-house movie with a thespian-type monologue. I must admit I was a bit wary o this at the start and thought, Can I handle this for over two hours.

 

Luckily the film takes a more modern style of verse in its depiction of characters after about twenty minutes.

 

That's not to say that it becomes like all other films based on the Viking age.

The director Robert Eggers is known to be quite concentrated on being historically accurate in the depiction of his films.

 

And the film does offer some interesting scenes of the brutality and near animal-like savagery of the Vikings and their traditions of bloodletting and scenes of full nudity in abundance.

 

The Northman will entertain, and the action pieces are excellently done for the most part, yes with all American-style films the fast cuts do happen.

 

But what makes the film watchable are the top cast of Alexandra Skarsgard, Nicole Kidman, Claes Bang, Ethan Hawke, and Willem Dafoe in a small role.

 

We'd enjoy our time with the film and in the end, we're glad we went to see it.

 

So even though the film has been deemed a failure in the box office stats with it not even making back its cost of 70-90 million dollars and only taking 59 million dollars at the box office it should not stop all from seeing it who are fascinated with the Viking culture.

 

The Northman is not for the faint-hearted or those not into bloodletting. But for everybody else get on down to the cinema and see it before it's gone.

 

Where have another mini-review next week as we are down to see another film at the cinema next week?

 

View Date: 20-05-2022

Location: Odeon Luxe

Review Date: 21-05-2022

Review By: Sertes Nake




Poster of The Northman - (C) 2022 Universal Pictures / Focus Features

 


Alita : Battle Angel - Mini Review

Posted by THE SNAKE on June 26, 2021 at 5:15 PM Comments comments (0)


One film I have wanted to see for a while and just never got round to was Battle Angel Alita. I didn't want to rent it and thought i would buy it on disc when it's at a reasonable price. Well this i did recently and I only went for the DVD as it was under £4.00  so if i hated it i could always resell it. 

Anyway Battle Angel Alita is a concept that's been in the works for many years, James Cameron was interested in making a film adaptation of the original Manga back in 2003. The film was on and then off , and then sent into limbo for years , All due to James Cameron concentrating on the Avatar film which grossed millions.
Battle Angel was going to be lit after Avatar but Cameron changed his mind due to the sheer success of Avatar and went on to concentrate on the next two sequels to Avatar which are coming very soon now.

But in the meantime  Director Robert Rodriguez became interested in the concept for Battle Angel.  of course the story how it all came about is quite convulted but I won't go into that here. . So in 2016 Twenty Century Fox and James Cameron announced that the film would go ahead and release in 2018 . Plus that the film would be directed by Robert Rodriguez.


Filming began in 2017  , produced by Cameron and based on a sreenplay by Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis. The film stars Rosa Salazar in the lead role as Alita. 

The film is based on a original Manga series  by Yukito Kishiro and consisted of Nine voloumes. 

The film focuses on Alita a amnesiac cyborg whose head and chest are found in a scrapyard by one Dr Ido .Bewidered by how the remains of such  could still harness and show signs of life Dr Ido quickly retrieves the remains and rushes back to his lab in the dystopian Iron City. The year is 2563.

There's quite a nice touch at the beginning as the Twenty Century Fox logo comes up and it changes to a dystopian looking Twenty Six Century Fox logo. Of note this was the last film Twenty Century Fox released before they where aquirred by the mighty Disney, who seem to be buying up everyone.


Now due to major works in house our cinema room is under refit at the moment so i was relagated to watching this on a 32 inch TV in another room. So maybe the visual impact of the film was slightly diminished because of that compared to watching on a projection screen. 

But all in all I enjoyed my time with Alita Battle Angel. , after waiting so long for the film did it live up to expectations?

I enjoyed the intial build up and the story behind the hunters guild , it reminded me of Sega's old game Phantasy Star Online. 

Also the way that the main character was filmed , getting Salazar to play the role as is and impose this cybernetic framework over her is amazing.
Your really believe this is a real Cyborg. Also the Big eye manga style character of Alita is a mesmerizing thing to watch. 

Rodriguez gets the performers to really get the emotion running , you feel the humanity and anger in Salazar's performance. The Blade Runner style city is gritty yet colourful enough to make your eyes pop.
But also as the film goes on through it's two hour running time you begin to realise that this story can not be told with the time alloted. 

There's a lot to take in , with Alita being a remnant of a bygone age of super soldiers and the fact that now she is the result of a obssessed Doctor who wants to create a perfect Cyborg. But this is also at odds with that part of the story as Alita's actual body which she recovers and Dr Ido refuses to use is the perfect cyborg body for Alita. 

Plus we have the fact that most of the film centers round a futuristic rollarball game which mixes Rollarball with the Running Man. The game which is run by the nortorious NOVA who runs the Floating City of Zalem which is suspended above the Iron City and is home to the elite who live a life of grandeur and  a city we actually never get to see other then fleeting glimpses or outer perimeter views. 


Alita Battle Angel is a fine and fun film that leaves you wanting more at it's end. as your dangled  threads of her past in fleeting glimpses and to be honest I could have done without another Avatar movie , a film which i thought ended with closure to a degree. 

Alita's story still needs to be told as we still have a lot to learn about her. 


Robert Rodriguez has hinted he would like to do a sequel but in the end it will be down to Disney now who own the rights. 

But for all who have not seen Alita Battle Angel , you really should if your into Sci-fi , Manga or just all out of the wall style stories. 

I enjoyed it immensely and await for the return of Rosa Salazar as Alita on our big screens .

Mini Review by Sertes Nake .. 



Mini Review - BLAST- 1997- Linden Ashby

Posted by THE SNAKE on March 6, 2020 at 9:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Yes it's another Mini review for you all. Here we look at a film from 1997 which harks back to a time of the heyday of B-movie action films.

 

MINI REVIEW - BLAST - 1997

Starring Linden Ashby / Andrew Divoff / Rutger Hauer 

BLAST  is a budget action film starring Actor / Martial Artist Linden Ashby , for those unfamiliar with him , FYI he played Johnny Cage in the live action Mortal Kombat film alongside Robin Shou and Chistoper Lambert

Blast plays like your usual one guy against a army of bad guys , inspired by the lkes of Die Hard no doubt.

Linden plays Jack Bryant a ex competiing martial artist who got badly injured and had to give up on his career , he fell on hard times and now works as a Janitor .

But Jack just happens to be  a Janitor at the forthcoming Atlanta games . And just happens to be on duty at the Swimming halls while the USA team are going for their practice , And lo- and behold his ex wife just happens to be the coach of the team.

At this very time a group of terroists infiltrate the Swimming halls, plant bombs and hold the team hostage. 

They are led by a crazed terroist played by Andrew Divoff. 



Only one man can stop them and it's Jack , Atlanta is in  lockdown as the terroists have planted bombs across the city , Plus their goal is one of deception as their main objective is march larger. 

But have no fear Jack has help at the end of a phone , a adversary of of the terrorist  who was presumed dead  , it's Leo who has no legs and long colouful drealocks  and goes around in motorised wheelchair. . All is not lost.

And yes Leo is played by the late Rutger Hauer.

Blast is a film that's OK to watch while you eat your dinner , it's no showcase for martial arts and compared to other films in the genre around the same time looks baron . They really needed some more extra's to fill out the scenes. 

Linden Ashby rarely gets to show his ability in martial arts , even though he is versed in Taekwondo,Karate and Kung Fu. There's a few nice little moves as he runs around avoiding terrorists and taking them out one by one. There's no real fight scene that offers any substance and the final is a letdown 

If you took Jean Claude Van Damme's Sudden Death , took out all the crowds , and left just a few people in a empty building , for go any of the bigger combat scenes  and add  Rutger Hauer's quite comic style character to the proceedings then your have this film. 

Here at Kick'em in the Ghoulies we watched this on our Amazon Prime subscription , whatever you do don't spend money on this because it really is just fodder for lunch.

Review by Sertes Nake

Mini Review- WISHED /2017 film by Dayan Eng

Posted by THE SNAKE on March 1, 2020 at 3:05 PM Comments comments (0)

MINI REVIEW


Yes mini reviews are here , Not all films we view really warrent a full on site feature, some dont really fit into the sites criteria.

The only time we will feature a comedy or romcom film in a site feature is if we are attending a film event and are covering many films.

So now we have these small snippet of film reviews where we get to grips with some casual viewing .

Our first film is a 2017 Comedy from China by Dayan Eng who directed and produced., it's a bit of a indie film and when released in the summer of 2017 it placed third at the Chinese box office and it had stiff competion.




MINI REVIEW - WISHED-2017

Wished stars Xia Yu , Yan Ni and Victoria Song. It also has cameos by Daniel Wu and David Wu ( two stars well known for there action roles in Hong Kong action films).

Xia Yu plays a Insurance slaeman who just can't catch a break, he has a job he's not fond of and has low expectaions and ditches his girlfriend to save her a life of misery.

But when all hope is lost he meets a young woman who claims to be a goddess and will grant him 19 wishes from his past life. Unfortunatly he is unable to choose these wishes and they are based on wishes he has made over his life .

Of course he just thinks this woman is a crank but when strange things start happening he starts to wonder , Also this goddess of wishes shows up in his aprtment who he shares with his friend.

Without spoiling the crazy fun in this film , think of something you wished for as a child and then it comes true right now. It so funny in places .

Of course as the film goes on hs wishes come from his later life so there a bit more sensible ,or at least you might think. 

There are some great nods to old school Hong Kong movies and Hollywood ones to. 

For a Indie title it featured a fun story and good special effects for the $5 million dollar budget.

Wished went on to appear in the USA and won awards to. 

Wished is available to view on Amazon Prime video Now , or can be got on Region 3 DVD or Bluray as well. 

For a relaxing film to have a laugh at Wished was good watch that exceeded my expectations as i expected i might end up turnng it off, but it grabbed me and i stuck with it.

Though the subtitles loose something in translation Wished is a fun watch.

Sertes Nake 

March 2020