Maze Runner: The Death Cure (2018): The Continuation of Teen Angst, Starring Dylan O’Brien- PART 3, To Be Rebooted Once Hollywood Runs Out of Young Adult Dystopian Books To Base Movies On, Still Better Than Twilight

Before we begin my review for “Maze Runner: The Death Cure,” I wanted to give a shoutout to someone I know. This person I’m talking about just created an account here on WordPress. She’s a good companion of mine, who goes by the name of Millie. This companion just initiated an all new blog by the name of “Movie Reviews and More!”. The overall intention of “Movie Reviews and More” is to provide movie reviews, rumors related to the entertainment industry, and just talk about movies regardless of whether or not they’ve been released. Millie began her blogging journey days prior to the publication of this post you’re reading as of this moment. If you could do her a favor by checking out her blog and following her, that would be much appreciated. Now that we have that out of the way, let’s start my review!

MOVIE REVIEWS AND MORE!: https://moviereviewsandmore780585661.wordpress.com/

“Maze Runner: The Death Cure” is directed by Wes Ball, the director of the previous two “Maze Runner” movies, and stars Dylan O’Brien (American Assassin, Teen Wolf), Ki Hong Lee (The Nine Lives of Chloe King, Wish Upon), Kaya Scodelario (Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, The Truth About Emanuel), Thomas Brodie-Sangster (Love Actually, Nanny McPhee), Dexter Darden (Geography Club, Joyful Noise), Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad, Once Upon a Time), and Rosa Salazar (Insurgent, Parenthood). This film is being advertised as the final “Maze Runner” installment, and in this one, Thomas goes on a mission to find a cure for a disease that’s spreading all over civilization.

It hasn’t been until recently that I watched the prior two “Maze Runner” installments. After watching both from beginning to end, I have to say I enjoyed the first one, but the second one felt like Melatonin in the form of moving images, which is another way of saying the second movie made me almost fall asleep at times. Going into the third film, I didn’t have truly high expectations. The movie had a low score on Rotten Tomatoes, not to mention a January release date. Let’s face it. Movies+January=Begging for mercy. It’s simple math! It’s still January as I’m writing this and I’ll have you know that this is the first 2018 release I’m focusing on. There’s a saying known as “worst for first,” although I can tell you right now that’s not true because last year I saw “The Emoji Movie” and that was the twentieth movie I’ve seen released that year. Depending on what happens in 2018, I don’t think that’s going to be the case here either, because “Maze Runner: The Death Cure” surprised me in terms of its positivity. As I walked into the theater to watch this movie, not to mention, prior to even going there, I had one thought to myself. I thought, “Please be better than the second movie!” Not only did I get a film that’s better than the second movie, to me it has around the same praise I have for the first movie. If you read my review for the first movie, you’d already know that I’m not saying this movie’s perfect. We’ll get to that, but let’s go on by stating some positives.

This movie was directed by Wes Ball, and as mentioned, he directed both the first and second installments to this series. The fact that he’s come back to direct this third movie is just unbelievable, and I mean that in a good way. Although then again you have Michael Bay coming back to direct every single “Transformers” film and look how those have turned out. I say this is positively unbelievable because you have several films out now based on young adult adaptations. These young adult adaptations have come from books that have gotten multiple installments. The “Maze Runner” franchise is one example of that. Let’s compare this statistic with other similar films. As for “Twilight,” every single movie in the franchise has a different director making the picture. Well, that is if “Breaking Dawn” wasn’t split into two parts so in that case, the same guy directed both of those movies. “The Hunger Games” started off with direction from Gary Ross, and every film after that was directed by Francis Lawrence. “Divergent” was directed by Neil Burger, but that didn’t last because the next two films in the franchise were to be directed by Robert Schwentke. “Fifty Shades of Grey,” YES, THIS COUNTS, because it’s based on “Twilight” fanfiction, even though its target demographic is middle-aged women, was directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson. Then once that movie came out, it had two more scheduled to be released. “Fifty Shades Darker,” the sequel to “Fifty Shades of Grey,” was directed by James Foley, who also directed “Fifty Shades Freed,” which will, unfortunately, be out soon. It just goes to show that with these young adult adaptations and the sole young adult adaptation wannabe, nobody can commit to these movies. With the existence of “Maze Runner” and Wes Ball, we have an exception on our hands. Not only did he direct these movies just for the sake of having a job, he actually tried on all three. He failed on the second one despite looking nice at times, but he tried on all of them. Ball now has a trilogy to look back on as an accomplishment. As for this film, Ball once again delivers by executing solid performances out of the actors along with neat location choices. According to IMDb, the movie was done in South Africa, and it fit the post-apocalyptic vibe quite well. A lot of the cinematography done by Gyula Pados, who also did the cinematography for the previous “Maze Runner” installment, was very proper and it I could easily tell what was going on. So for overall direction, this movie’s solid.

Moving onto the actors, let’s talk about Dylan O’Brien. After seeing Dylan O’Brien in this movie and hearing a little more about him, I have massive respect for him. While all of the actors here commit to their roles, I have to say that O’Brien did an exceptional job committing to the one for which he was responsible. In 2016, it was reported that O’Brien was injured on set while filming “The Death Cure,” suspending production indefinitely. Turns out the injury came from a car making contact with him. Production resumed about a year after the injury happened. The fact is, they got it done. O’Brien survived, everyone’s fine, and the movie was made. Having said that, I want to write my own movies, I might even want to direct them, and I’ve had an idea for one for some time and I’ve often thought to myself for this one I’m thinking of in particular, Dylan O’Brien would be the lead role. Now that I’ve seen O’Brien and what he’s done as far as this movie goes, I want to work with him even more. O’Brien plays the character of Thomas once again, and he’s definitely got some charisma here, much like some other characters.

Another notably fine character is Newt, played by Thomas Brodie-Sangster. I thought Brodie-Sangster’s performance was solid and the way his character was written, along with Dylan O’Brien’s, brought out some great chemistry between the two. I’d probably have to watch the other two movies again, but I don’t think I felt as much of a connection to him as I did here. Maybe it’s because this is the last installment, maybe it’s because I watched this in a theater, not to mention an IMAX theater, I don’t know, but the point is, I like Newt here.

Another character worth talking about is Kaya Scodelario’s character of Teresa. In this movie, we first see her on the side of WCKD, which if can’t tell by what that acronym sounds like, is this franchise’s evil organization. I’m not gonna go into supreme detail about Teresa, but just about every single action from this character was something I was able to believe.

This movie, to me, was full of surprises, and I think I made that somewhat clear. Another surprise that caught my attention was that I actually cared about Rosa Salazar’s character of Brenda. She was introduced in “The Scorch Trials” as a character I didn’t really have much of a connection towards and since the movie itself was a near-snoozefest, that pretty much explains my thoughts towards her character. Brenda actually had a standout scene to me at one point during this movie. She’s driving a bus, and she has to escape, and the way she attempts to escape is pretty awesome. Actually, you know what, I take that back. It was aMAZEing.

As mentioned, this movie isn’t flawless, and as a movie reviewing moron, I gotta be fair here. Going into this film, I will have you know that I was actually at a restaurant beforehand having breakfast. My sister, who wasn’t going to see the movie, was receiving explanation from my father as to what the movie we were going to see was like. He described it as a combination of “The Hunger Games” and “Resident Evil,” at least that’s what my mind suggests. As for that second insertion, I’m not talking about the video games, he’s never played those. He’s talking about the movie adaptations. I haven’t seen one of those films, but I heard they’re abysmal, but having heard various things about them, I think I can make that connection now. The “Resident Evil” movies have a number of moments where you basically have to suspend your disbelief like crazy. This movie has that too, you just wonder how some of the stuff in this film actually happens. It’s not “Batman & Robin” bad, but it’s still a thing that occurs. One more issue I had was the first part of the film. I honestly thought it was a tad draggy but it quickly recovered as the movie went on.

If this movie, at least in my book, could trim up those issues, it might just be the best “Maze Runner” movie yet. Not only that, but it might make this the most solid based on dystopian young adult adaptation movie series I’ve seen to date. In my rankings, it’s tied with “Divergent,” but “The Maze Runner” is actually better because it could actually finish its own story. Based on what I’m saying about “The Scorch Trials,” that’s not really saying all that much. Others would disagree with me, and I’m not lying. Germain Lussier from io9 Reviews made an article titled “The Death Cure Doesn’t Give The Maze Runner the Ending It Deserves.” Not only that, but David Sims from The Atlantic calls this movie a “grim, half-hearted farewell.” I never read the “Maze Runner” books, so maybe my opinion is little different than others. Although Sims never says whether or not he’s read the books so that fact stands here. Nevertheless, maybe I’d like this movie a little less if I have actually read the books, but only time will tell. I might not ever read the books. This isn’t my first time saying this, but movies are more fun! By the way, sorry, books.

In the end, I was rather satisfied with “Maze Runner: The Death Cure.” Wes Ball once again proves to be an effective director who I personally think should get more work in the realm of action movies. Dylan O’Brien nails yet another performance as the lead character of Thomas. I thought a lot of the characters were great. The sound editing was a joy. The set pieces were amazing as well. Also, one of the best parts about all of this, we have a solid January movie! Whether or not this third installment is better than the second one requires no contest. As for being better than the first one, that’s a hard judgment to make, it could be slightly better, slightly worse, or equal. With that being said, I’m going to give “Maze Runner: The Death Cure” a 7/10. One last thing I’m wondering about this movie is this. Why do so many franchises like this have a fetish for needles? Just put this side by side with “The Hunger Games,” “The Giver,” and “Divergent” to see what I mean! Oh yeah, and even more hilarious, “The Hunger Games” has a character called Nessie Needle! Thanks for reading this review, be sure to check out my friend’s blog, and also be sure to check out my past “Maze Runner” reviews. I have reviews for “The Maze Runner” and “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials,” so take a look at those if you’re interested. Also, as for upcoming content, I’m not sure what I’ll see next. Maybe “The Commuter” or “12 Strong” will be my next review. We’ll find out when time allows it. Stay tuned for more great content! I want to know, did you see “Maze Runner: The Death Cure?” What are your thoughts? What is your favorite “Maze Runner” installment in the movie trilogy? What is your favorite “Maze Runner” book? How would you rank either saga? Do you think either the books or movies are better? Let me know down below! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

“THE MAZE RUNNER” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2018/01/18/the-maze-runner-2014-the-continuation-of-teen-angst-starring-dylan-obrien/

“MAZE RUNNER: THE SCORCH TRIALS” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2018/01/25/maze-runner-the-scorch-trials-the-continuation-of-teen-angst-starring-dylan-obrien-part-2-to-be-concluded-in-almost-2-5-years-also-this-is-wckd-boring/

Advertisements

Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials (2015): The Continuation of Teen Angst, Starring Dylan O’Brien- PART 2, To Be Concluded In Almost 2.5 Years. Also, This is WCKD Boring

Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! Last week I reviewed “The Maze Runner,” and I’m letting you know about this because one, it feels appropriate, and two, just about nobody saw it. Sure, people saw “The Maze Runner” as in they saw the movie, but nobody clicked on my review. I’ll have a link down below to my review for “The Maze Runner,” and if you’re lucky enough, you’ll be one of the first people to check it out! This week, I’m going to be following up on my “Maze Runner” review I did last week and I’ll be showing you all my thoughts on “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials,” as suggested in the title of this post. A title so stupid that it’s nearly a copypaste of the title to my first “Maze Runner” review, but with more s*it sprinkled into it. Enough with that, let’s start the review!

“THE MAZE RUNNER” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2018/01/18/the-maze-runner-2014-the-continuation-of-teen-angst-starring-dylan-obrien/

mv5bmje3mdu2nzqyml5bml5banbnxkftztgwmzqxmdq3nte-_v1_sy1000_sx675_al_

“Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials” is directed by Wes Ball, who also directed the first “Maze Runner” installment, and stars Dylan O’Brien (The Internship, Teen Wolf), Kaya Scodelario (Now Is Good, The Truth About Emanuel), and Thomas Brodie-Sangster (Love, Actually, Phineas and Ferb) and is the sequel to “The Maze Runner,” which came out one year prior to this installment, and is based on a popular teen angst book by James Dashner. Now that the Gladers we know from the first movie are out of the maze, they have to deal with a new landscape, with new obstacles. And this landscape looks like it’s seen some s*it.

When it comes to the first “Maze Runner,” I really enjoyed the movie for what it was. It’s a lighthearted teen angst movie with a bunch of folks trapped in a maze, trying to get out. Several moments had me glued to the screen, and now that these people are out of the maze, the question is, what’s next? This movie goes into that. In honest truth, I can barely tell you what comes next, because this movie. Was. Boring as f*ck! The first “Maze Runner” was engaging and entertaining, and while the first forty minutes of this thing is quite the same way, although maybe not as much, it just didn’t work out in the end. I actually saw ads for this film in 2015, and I haven’t seen the first installment to this series yet, but I knew about it and everything. Compared to the first film, this looked uninspired, and looked like it was there to have something happen as filler before the last film. I’m not entirely against the young adult genre, there is some good stuff that has come out of it. Although this is one major example of the bad. While not as intolerable as “The Fifth Wave,” I certainly can’t say this had a likable feel to it.

Don’t get me wrong, the vibe that’s present for the movie kind of works. Most of it is in a desolate landscape and given the music, story, not to leave out the motivations and attitudes of the characters, I’d say everything was logical. Although as far as the movie’s progression goes, that’s where the weaknesses start to pour in. This movie honestly, as I watched it, felt like a cash-in. I don’t know how much planning went into this particular installment, nor do I know how much planning went into writing the book for it, but if the book was lazy, the laziness of this movie therefore wouldn’t be all that surprising. I mean, I know the sequel was planned because of the semi-cliffhanger ending the first film gave, but it doesn’t change how poor the execution here was.

The first forty minutes, as mentioned, were entertaining to me. In fact, you know how this movie is called “The Scorch Trials?” Basically the Scorch is what the desolate landscape is called. Everything that happens prior to getting towards the scorch scenes was the entertaining chunk of the movie. As I got to the Scorch portion of the film, I wanted to take out my phone and do something on there instead of watch the movie. I assure you whatever it was I did on my phone, was ten times as fun as the movie. You might as well say that as we got to the scorch scenes, my mind was instantly “scorched” by Dullivan, the god of boredom. Even one or two fast paced chase scenes couldn’t keep me intrigued. I tried my best not to fall asleep, and while I succeeded, I can’t say I feel like I benefited from this experience.

I was however engaged by the ending. While part of it was predictable, I was constantly thinking to myself, when was this s*it going to conclude? I wanted to do something that would have been worth my time. I won’t go into much detail, but it was a big turnaround for my interest towards the film. I got engaged for a moment, but it wasn’t enough for me to say this film is competent.

This film once again stars Dylan O’Brien, or for this movie to make sense, Dullen O’Brien. He’s not a bad actor and once again, I buy him as this teenager. He does a fine job playing Thomas and the transition from one movie to the next was very fluid. During the first forty minutes, I was able to root for this guy not to mention with those alongside him. Even though this movie is wicked boring. Whoops! Sorry, I meant, WCKD boring.

I can’t even talk about this movie anymore! I honestly want to have more to say, but in the long run, I have to stop here! I’ve been running this maze too long and it’s time to collapse in fetal position! If you think that I’m lazy for not going on, let me just remind you that this movie felt lazy so it all comes together! So yeah, this movie sucked, it was boring, and that’s pretty much the gist of it. Badabing badabang badaboom.

Guys, if you can’t tell by how much I wanted to get this review off my belt, I hated this movie. “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials” is yet another flop in the young adult genre and I just hope that when it comes to “The Death Cure,” I don’t have a similar experience. When it comes to teen angst movies, this may not be the most horrible of every single one I watched, but it might be the most boring. I only described one character! You know why I did that? Because this movie f*cking sucks and I hate talking about it! Part of me doesn’t even want to rate it! But rules are rules, I gotta rate this bitch. I’m gonna give “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials” a 3/10. Once again, if you watch this movie, chances are you won’t be totally bored through the whole thing, but there’s barely any good parts in it. I have never read the “Scorch Trials” book, but I imagine it’s better than this junk. Thanks for reading perhaps one of my most intentionally lazy reviews ever despite having a descriptive title. I barely survived the horrendous killer maze that was “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials,” and in the end, that’s what really matters. This weekend, I hope to see “Maze Runner: The Death Cure” and I just hope for humanity that it’s better than this movie, or at the very least, just a good movie. Although this is a January film and if you know how movies are, January is a s*itshow. Stay tuned for that review and more great content! I want to know, did you see “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials?” What did you think about it? Did you read the book? What did you think about that? How would you compare the two pieces of work alongside each other? Let me know in the comments! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

The Maze Runner (2014): The Continuation of Teen Angst, Starring Dylan O’Brien

Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! In 2014, one movie I kind of wanted to see was “The Maze Runner,” unfortunately, I never got around to watching it. Although a few months ago I was buying a number of Blu-rays at one of my personal favorite shops around the mall, AKA Newbury Comics, and I managed to come across “The Maze Runner” and “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials. I still went on for months after buying them without watching either one of the films. That however, has changed. On January 26th, “Maze Runner: The Death Cure” will hit theaters. Appropriately, I felt I should review the first “Maze Runner” and the second “Maze Runner.” Since I’m a chronological type of person, we’re gonna kick this series off by talking about the first “Maze Runner.” Without further ado, let’s start the review.

mv5bmjuynta3mtaym15bml5banbnxkftztgwoteymtkymje-_v1_

“The Maze Runner” is directed by Wes Ball who has mainly done work in the film industry in the realms of art and visual effects. Aside from a few short films, this is pretty much the guy’s directorial debut. This movie stars Dylan O’Brien (Teen Wolf, The Internship), Kaya Scoldelario (Now Is Good, The Truth About Emanuel), and Will Poulter (We’re the Millers, Son of Rambow). “The Maze Runner” is about a youngish boy who is brought into this green, limited realm. He meets a group of men who tries to get him to adapt to the way things are. However, there is a way out (sort of). There is a maze separating this realm from the outside world. “Runners” are searching inside it every day, trying to find a way out. It’s at a point when this youngish boy learns about all of this, when he desires to join the runners.

This movie came out in 2014, it’s based on a book by James Dashner, and one thing I noticed about not only the 2010s decade, but perhaps slightly before this particular decade began, is how many popular young adult teen angst novels were being adapted into movies. Some examples include “Twilight,” “The Hunger Games,” “Harry Potter,” “Percy Jackson,” “The Chronicles of Narnia,” etc. I’ve seen a number of these, and no, “Twilight” wasn’t one of them. Thank goodness! While some of these young adult novels might fall under say the romance or fantasy genres, one concept that has applied a lot to recently popularized young adult books is the sci-fi dystopian element. This has been extremely evident with the worldwide phenomenon known as “The Hunger Games.”

I’ll be honest with you, I read the first “Hunger Games” book in the summer of 2012, and I don’t even recall making it a quarter of the way through the whole thing. I watched the movie, and while it wasn’t bad the first time watching it, the film got worse over more watches and the more I thought about it. The second film’s good, but I’ve yet to see “Mockingjay” parts 1 & 2, because as of now, I no desire to pay for two parts.

There’s a series that relates to this called “Divergent,” and I haven’t read the books for that. I enjoyed the first movie, I thought the second one was slightly better, but the third one sucked. As for the third movie, this is yet another case of splitting a book into two parts, and I’m wondering if that’s partially why the movie didn’t do well in terms of reactions and returns at the box office. Oh yeah, also don’t forget the rather dull story, annoying characters, and crappy CGI. One of the biggest problems I have with the movies however is that Tris keeps changing her hair. What’s up with that?!

People often consider “Divergent” a ripoff of “The Hunger Games,” but that’s simply not true. Both have corrupt governments and are futuristic, but just tinker around with them a little bit and you’ll see the differences underneath. “The Hunger Games” is an event that involves fighting to the death whereas “Divergent” is simply about a girl in a certain class that society doesn’t like. As for “The Maze Runner,” it’s got some similarities to both “The Hunger Games” and “Divergent.” However, as far as the book goes, “The Maze Runner” came out before “Divergent,” so you can technically say “Divergent” has similarities to “The Maze Runner” and “The Hunger Games.” All three books involve a post-apocalyptic world with a nasty regime, there’s a teen who has to fight against the overlords, and they’re all tested. The similarities are significant in all three films. However, I think out of “The Hunger Games,” “Divergent,” and “The Maze Runner,” I have to say I think “The Maze Runner” may be the best film of the three. This doesn’t say much about the book, but as a film, this one likely reigns supreme.

What I just said doesn’t mean “The Maze Runner” is a masterpiece, I just think it’s an enjoyable flick that could help you pass the time for a couple of hours. Since I have that out of the way, let’s get into some problems.

Pacing wise, this movie is mostly competent, you can follow everything quite well, and your eyes will be stuck to the screen for a long time.  However, as the movie gets towards the end, I have to say that there’s a point, specifically when a screen comes on and everybody’s listening, that the pacing just goes off for a second. I don’t know how others feel about that but that’s how I feel. I will say though, without spoiling much of anything, the movie has to do something in particular, and that thing in particular is what caused the drag for me.

One little nitpick, and I don’t know if this was an idea that the book’s author had, or if it was a director, or an editor, or who it could have possibly been that had this vision, but there are these enemies that you see in the film. They’re called Grievers. As enemies, they are serviceable and I don’t really have much that’s significantly wrong with them, but thinking about them, they almost look like ripoffs of the Xenomorphs from the “Alien” franchise. I’m surprised I’ve even said that because believe it or not I haven’t watched one “Alien” movie.

Dylan O’Brien plays the main character of Thomas throughout “The Maze Runner,” and I’d say that the character was well written, and I’d say having gone through the movie, O’Brien’s a nice pick to play the character. Granted, I can tell they probably cast Dylan O’Brien mainly because girls have a crush on him since he’s on “Teen Wolf” and if you know what the show is, you’d understand my point. To my happiness, the script focused less on his physique and more on his hope to become a runner and leave the maze. That remains true for every single one of the movies characters, which is just rather refreshing. Speaking of refreshing, there’s not much romance in this film. There is friendship, there is interaction, but there’s never any romance. And in a world where that is prominent in both the “Hunger Games” and “Divergent” franchises, that is awesome.

I really like the scene in the film where we first meet Thomas and he forgets his real name. The way he finds out is kind of hilarious. Basically, we meet him, it’s daytime, we are introduced to the Gladers, and soon, night arrives, we see a bunch of boys around a campfire. Thomas is in a fight, and as he is fighting, he’s getting his butt kicked, and all of a sudden, he remembers his name is Thomas, announces it in front of all the boys, and everyone is just exclaiming to the tenth degree. Pure hilarity.

As for another standout character, we have the big bad bully, Gally, played by Will Poulter. While Thomas is just trying to save everyone, Gally would occasionally interfere, saying that Thomas needs to be punished. I must say, this is good choice from a casting perspective, and I’m not saying this is a negative despite coming off as repetitive, he kind of looks like bullies we’ve seen in the past in terms of what’s happened in TV and movies. Just compare him with characters such as Biff from “Back to the Future” or Buzz from “Home Alone” and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

In the end, I’d say “The Maze Runner” is a really enjoyable film for what it is. It has some of the teen angst cliches, but at the same time, is a little more lighthearted in ways making it feel like you can have fun watching the movie. I have nothing against dark and gritty films, but in reality, that’s how a majority of teen angst films seem to come off. If you have never seen “The Maze Runner,” I do recommend it. I don’t know what to say about the book, or how much you’ll like the movie if you’ve read the book. I just know they’re not exactly the same. I’m going to give “The Maze Runner” a 7/10. Thanks for reading this review! I’m going to have my review up for the second part of the “Maze Runner” trilogy next Thursday, January 25th, which is also the night of the early screenings of the final installment, “Maze Runner: The Death Cure.” So stay tuned for my review of “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials,” along with more exciting content coming your way. I want to know, did you watch “The Maze Runner?” What are your thoughts? Did you read the book? Which is better? The book or the movie? Let me know your thoughts down below! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

Molly’s Game (2017): Passable, but with “High MIstakes”

mv5bntkzmzrlyjetmtq5yi00owy3lwi0nzytngq4zdkzztu0m2iwxkeyxkfqcgdeqxvymtmxodk2otu-_v1_sy1000_cr006741000_al_

“Molly’s Game” is directed by Aaron Sorkin (Steve Jobs, The Social Network) and stars Jessica Chastain (Interstellar, Zero Dark Thirty), Idris Elba (Pacific Rim, Thor), and Kevin Costner (Man of Steel, Dances with Wolves) in a movie based on a book of the same name. It’s about the true story of Molly Bloom, a former poker entrepreneur and Olympic-class skier who was charged with running the world’s most exclusive high-stakes poker game.

I haven’t really followed much of Aaron Sorkin’s previous work. This movie is actually his directorial debut, and if you have followed Sorkin’s work, you’d know he’s typically known for his writing. Sorkin is responsible for creating “The West Wing,” which he often wrote. As far as movies go, he has written “Moneyball,” “Steve Jobs,” “The Social Network,” “A Few Good Men,” and “Charlie Wilson’s War.” I was actually going to watch “Steve Jobs” in 2015 during its theatrical run, but I never got around to it. Nevertheless, I heard the fellow can write. Having seen this movie, I’d say he can direct too. I can appreciate the vision this movie contained. Going at a quick pace, all the while providing a serious tone. There were a couple of moments that I really liked from a lighting perspective as well. The colors just meshed together almost like a very small lens flare that didn’t feel obnoxious in any sort of way. As far as writing and editing goes, here are my thoughts.

I totally see what people are talking about when it comes to Aaron Sorkin and writing, the two go together like FedEx and that arrow between the “E” and the “x.” What’s that? You didn’t know about the FedEx arrow? Google the FedEx logo and observe it closely. The opening sequence of this film has Molly Bloom talking like I’m listening to what happens when an auctioneer and a motivational speaker combine into a single person. Not only was the diction well done, it was funny, it was informative, and it set a proper tone for the movie. This movie’s based on a book, and I apologize to books, but I never read the book for this film. I don’t know how similar this movie’s introduction is to the book, but if the writing resembles the book here, I’d say this is great writing in general. Props to both Bloom and Sorkin if that’s the case. Still, at the very least, props to Sorkin. I’ve heard a saying that the best directors make the best editors. As far as directing ability goes, this was mostly competent. I have a couple of issues, but this can apply to either the script or the editing instead of just directing.

A couple of shows that really make me uncomfortable are “The Office” and “Modern Family.” I heard a lot of people like both programs. Personally, I can’t watch them. Maybe I’ll give “The Office” a try because I hear a lot of folks talking about it like it’s the greatest thing between Netflix and the idea of Netflix and chill. Also, f*ck Netflix. However I don’t think I can watch “Modern Family” ever again. It’s not only unfunny despite how many people watch it and revered it is, but it’s also shot in a style that tries to make you feel like you’re there, but it just comes off like a student film to me. It almost reminds me of the shaky cam from “The Hunger Games!” “Molly’s Game” is not as bad, it’s not as shaky, it’s not as handheld, it works for what it’s doing. …For the most part. When it comes to editing, this movie cuts way too quickly sometimes. It tries to maintain this very quick style of filmmaking, and it just doesn’t work. I noticed one or two jumpcuts here as well. As far as writing goes, it’s tonally inconsistent. While most of the movie is fast and stays fast, it sometimes just slows down to a point where it’s horribly slow. Throughout the entire film, Jessica Chastain is narrating as Molly Bloom and it almost feels like something that should keep you going towards the edge of your seat. There are moments here that just don’t match what the movie feels like the entire time. It feels like a couple movies meshed into one. It’s like combining one movie, “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” with another movie, “Manchester by the Sea,” although it’s a million times happier. The editing combined with the screenplay is like a hotel room with a comfortable bed, no bugs, it’s got a clean carpet, the TV is 4K, everything looks nice, but the toilet isn’t working, the shower’s water system is screwed up, and the sink handles for hot and cold are grungy and hard to operate. It just all needs minor tweaking on perhaps major flaws before absolute perfection.

However let’s move our attention to the best part of the movie, Jessica Chastain as Molly Bloom. Some people may go see this movie for a number of reasons. Some people are interested in the story of Molly Bloom, some people like Aaron Sorkin’s writing, and some will say that the cast looks promising. I’ve observed Idris Elba and Kevin Costner in this film, and while both give competent performances, Jessica Chastain trumped them both. If the writing wasn’t excellent enough, this movie had an amazing actress to go off of it. I must say, despite my love for Jessica Chastain, I haven’t seen too many performances from her. However, much like the other movies where I saw Jessica Chastain performing, this is another fine example of how someone should act in a movie. They transform into a different person, and they allow the audience to see them as more than someone on a screen.

In the end, I got to say that “Molly’s Game” is not really a movie that I’d recommend to everyone, but I wouldn’t say to shy away from it either. It’s one of those movies that can impress you in a number of ways, but isn’t entirely screwed together to the point of perfection. I like the acting. I like the directing. I like the writing. However, the movie itself is sloppy when it comes to pacing. At times it wants to accelerate, and at others it wants to drag. There are times where I just nearly wanted to fall asleep, and I must have felt that during the fast parts due to the inconsistency of pacing. Although I will say this, Jessica Chastain f*cking rocks. I’m going to give “Molly’s Game” a 6/10. Thanks for reading this review! On Thursday, I’m going to start off my “Maze Runner” review series by talking about the first installment in the movie franchise, “The Maze Runner,” so look forward to that. Also, depending on what happens, tomorrow I’m going to upload a surprise post. I won’t tell what it is. But January 17th is a special day in my heart. That’ll be your hint. I might not post this, but that’s if I don’t finish it in a certain amount of time. Stay tuned for more reviews and other great content! Did you see “Molly’s Game?” What are your thoughts? How do you think Aaron Sorkin did as a first-time director? Let me know down below! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

75th Golden Globes and Gender Equality: What Does It Equal?

mv5bnjm2ndq0odm0of5bml5banbnxkftztgwndi3nte0ndm-_v1_sy1000_cr007561000_al_

Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! On January 7th, 2018 the “75th Golden Globes” was held. Seventy-five, undoubtedly, is a big number for any event, however this felt like other “Golden Globes” shows I watched with a 75 shoved in the title. Although based on my experience, it wasn’t as pleasant to watch. Nevertheless, it happened. Strange things occurred when it comes to the show. No, that’s not a “Stranger Things” pun, even though the show had a nomination. Apparently “The Boss Baby” was GOOD ENOUGH to be nominated for Best Animated Feature Film. As for one of the winners, specifically James Franco (The Disaster Artist), who won Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy, which in my opinion is incredibly deserved, he allowed Tommy Wiseau, the person who may be most responsible for his film, to come onstage as he was thanking him. As Wiseau came up, he tried to take the mic, but Franco pushed him out of the way. To be fair, Franco had limited time to speak so this was rather understandable. However it still comes off as either rude or weird. I don’t know, make your pick.

For those who were wondering what Tommy would have said, he went on KTLA 5, a local news network out of Los Angeles, CA. While he was on the program, he was promoting his disasterpiece, “The Room,” saying it’ll be back in cinemas for one night only, specifically Wednesday, January 10th. This technically means that “The Room” has a quality that associates with a lot of bad movies, despite how this is technically a rerelease, you can now say “The Room” released in January! During the promotion, the whole push incident was brought up. Tommy explained what he would have said if he actually had the mic. “If a lot of people love each other, the world would be a better place to live, and I’d say I’m making dream, it’s alive, it’s real, and again I’m very proud of “The Room,” etc. That’s it, that’s all I want to say. Nice thing. But somebody was like naaaaw, you cannot do that.” Out of all the things that were prominent at the Golden Globes this year, it was the message to not sexually harass and the promotion of the #MeToo movement.

The #MeToo movement was popularized in October 2017 when word was getting out that apparently a lot of men in Hollywood happened to be perverts. Such people included Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Louis CK, Ben Affleck, Danny Masterson, Brett Ratner, and Bryan Singer. I think this movement is a good way to say that you shouldn’t sexually abuse others against their will.

When it comes to a lot of award shows I watch, I notice that they always touch upon certain social issues. As this occurs, people give their thoughts on the issue and I have nothing against it. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, there’s nothing wrong with having an opinion on anything. Unless of course you actually enjoyed “The Emoji Movie.” This year, the Me Too movement was extremely prominent. Almost everyone was wearing black. Not just women, but men too. A lot of women mentioned something along the lines of sexual harassment and how awful it is in their acceptance speech, Oprah Winfrey was given the Cecil B. DeMille award, which lead to an extended speech about sexual harassment, how “time is up,” and letting women know that they shouldn’t have to worry about the concept as much in the future now that all of the #MeToo stuff is happening. The #MeToo movement from my personal point of view is a very positive movement. However, the question I have is, is it completely justified or executed in a proper manner?

On one hand, I’d say it’s absolutely justified, sexual harassment is a serious issue. I’m well aware it’s usually the men who give the harassment and the women who receive the harassment, and I’m proud of all these women coming out and telling the hidden secrets behind all of the perversion they’ve received over the years. There are times however during this Golden Globes event where I think the events surrounding it went a little too far.

As mentioned earlier, almost everyone who attended the Golden Globes wore black. When it comes to the people who didn’t, one standout is Blanca Blanco. Yes, that’s her real name. Blanca Blanco is an actress who appeared in movies such as “Teen Star Academy” and “Fake News.” So in other words, you probably don’t care about what she’s done career-wise. Blanco showed up to the event wearing a red dress, which eventually lead to loads of flak. She made an exclusive statement to Refinery29, an American digital media company whose target audience is young women, and she had this to say:

“I love red. Wearing red does not mean I’m against #timesup movement. I applaud and stand by the courageous actresses that continue to brake the circle of abuse through their actions and their style choice. It is one of many factors leading women to a safer place because of their status in the acting world. I am excited about the ‘Time’s UP’ movement because true change is long overdue.”

By the way, me spelling “brake” is not an error, that’s how Blanco wrote her statement.

Up above is a photo of Blanco in her red dress, and this is when the controversy first started. A number of people think the dress is fine example of stupidity that disgraces the #MeToo movement whereas others think its just a nice looking dress that stands out. I’m on the side that doesn’t exactly care about the dress color. It’s extremely elegant and presentable as a dress, and it doesn’t matter whether its red or black or violet! Although rainbow colors would be a little weird for it according to my imagination. Blanca Blanco is that one person who shows up at the photo studio for a family photo who didn’t wear the same outfit, and I don’t care! By the way, why do outfits always have to match for family photos? That’s so odd! If I ever shown up to an event such as the Golden Globes, I would try to look nice, but in the end, color isn’t something that should necessarily be non-optional for its attendees. You can do it to show your support for a movement, but just because someone doesn’t wear a certain color, it doesn’t mean they don’t support a movement. What was it that Blanca Blanco said in that statement?

“I love red.”

You go girl! Also, what amazes me about this is how women’s rights are still an issue today, and everyone is kind of saying that this woman doesn’t have the right to wear red. By the way, I’ll have Blanca Blanco remind you something.

No red-shaming!

Next up, we’re gonna talk about Natalie Portman, or as I like to call her, one of the two people in a romantic relationship that had no chemistry in “Star Wars Episode II.” She’s a fine actress, but from a script perspective her character just didn’t work. During hear appearance at the Golden Globes, she went onstage alongside Ron Howard, and before going any further. Look at Natalie’s smile! She looks like she went into an orphanage, stayed awhile, and had a nice meal. And by a nice meal, I mean she ate all of the children! While the two were onstage, they were presenting the nominees and winner for Best Director. Natalie had one thing to say before the nominees were presented. She said, “And here are the all male nominees.” Best Director had five nominees, all of which were male. They are Christopher Nolan (Dunkirk), Steven Spielberg (The Post), Martin McDonagh (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri), Ridley Scott (All the Money in the World), and Guillermo del Toro (The Shape of Water). Let me just say that all of these from what I heard were completely justifiable nominees, and I can somewhat understand people complaining that Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird) or Patty Jenkins (Wonder Woman) didn’t get nominated. However, I don’t really find this joke funny. For one thing, it’s kind of forced and comes off as cringeworthy. Another thing I don’t like about it is that it’s basically shaming talented people, just because they’re men. Yes, you can technically say that the nominators are to blame here, but in reality, it doesn’t change the fact that you’re accusing them for nominating people and what they did was wrong because they have something that they can’t alter! Well, unless you get a procedure done. Not to mention, Portman was standing next to Ron Howard, a male director. Do I find the jab offensive? Not really. It’s just something that shouldn’t have been said. This may be a night to promote gender equality, but it’s also a night to celebrate achievement in film. And yes, more female directors would be nice, but it’s a female’s choice on whether or not she directs a movie just like how it’s a male’s choice. As much as I would love to see more great movies directed by women, I ultimately just want to see terrific movies directed by PEOPLE. Speaking of women and men, let’s talk about how the show opened.

Seth Meyers kicked the night off by walking onstage, and before he introduces himself with his full name, he says to everyone, “Good evening ladies and remaining gentlemen.” Having heard that, not only is that clever, but also hilarious. The monologue continues and eventually arrives at a point where Seth does a bit that he does on “Late Night with Seth Meyers” called Jokes Seth Can’t Tell, but every single joke is coming from a Hollywood star in the Golden Globe audience. I can’t really say I laughed all that much, even though it was nice hearing Jessica Chastain’s voice. At one point, we get to Amy Poehler, who I can’t really say makes terrible decisions in the business given that she played Joy in “Inside Out,” but hearing her talk here made me think I was watching “Ghostbusters” 2016. I’m not against feminist values, but she’s just forcing this “mansplaining” joke, if you can call it a joke, down everyone’s throat. It just felt like an awkward comedy or a really horrible “SNL” sketch.

Also, I want to say, Barbra Streisand (Yentl, The Guilt Trip) showed up at the event, and when she went onstage, this happened to be towards the end of the show. This was some time after Oprah Winfrey accepted her Cecil B. DeMille award. I must say, out of everyone who appeared and spoke at the event, she probably had the speech that will be recalled most out of them all. When Oprah exclaimed “Their time is up,” that put my brain into remembrance mode. So when Streisand shows up onstage later, she reminds everyone that time’s up, she was the first and only female director to win Best Director at a Golden Globes event, and that we need more female directors, not to mention more nominated female directors. I’m gonna say the same thing I said about Natalie Portman. People should make great movies, not just women. And I’m also gonna say this, just let the people nominated have their night. Much like Natalie’s jab, I don’t find anything Streisand is saying offensive. In fact, she does make a good point, we do need more competent movies from female directors. Although in reality, movies are movies, and people are people. I don’t care who directed the movie, as long as it’s not Anthony Ferrante (Sharknado 1-5). In the end, I just think what she’s saying is somewhat disrespectful at this time and place. If all the Best Director nominees were objectively terrible, let’s just say the nominees were Michael Bay (Transformers: The Last Knight), Paul W.S Anderson (Resident Evil: The Final Chapter), Peter Chelsom (The Space Between Us), Tomas Alfredson (The Snowman), and Dean Devlin (Geostorm), then I’d understand. However, all the nominees probably deserved some respect based on how well received their films happened to be. I seriously want to know, when you watch “America’s Got Talent,” does the host, AKA the one who presents all the winners and people going through to the next round, say something like “We need more variety winners?” No they don’t! I’m not against Oprah Winfrey’s speech whatsoever because it was mainly about ending abuse. Not nominating many female directors isn’t abuse, it’s just not considering people in a certain category. Also, I must say, at least Natalie Portman’s comment, while perhaps forced, was an attempt to make people laugh. Streisand’s comment just felt like it was rushed and it literally had no impact other than simply existing. With the exception of a gender swap, there is probably no other way a man can change exactly who they are. They’re a man, they can’t control that, just as how women can’t control being a woman. I’m not against the idea of nominating more female directors and having them win, but I’m against the idea of women literally having to insult boys for being boys. PLEASE DON’T TAKE THOSE LAST FOUR WORDS THE WRONG WAY.

There are so many people who gave this Golden Globes event a 1 on IMDb, and I can see why. I wouldn’t say it’s a 1/10 show, there are some good moments, it’s just that a chunk of the stuff about Time’s Up came off as forced despite being a positive movement, much like the #MeToo movement. You can share ideas, but there’s a fine line between sharing ideas and forcing them. Sharing them was done with Seth’s introduction line, forcing them was done with Natalie Portman as she presented the Best Director nominees. Next year, let’s try sharing and see how that pans out. Thanks for reading this post, I just want everyone to know that next week I will have my review up for “Molly’s Game,” I’m going to see it next Monday, so I’ll either get the review up by the end of the day or on Tuesday. Also, on Thursday, January 18th, I’m going to be starting my review series for the “Maze Runner” movies, starting with the first installment, simply referred to as “The Maze Runner.” This is being done because the third movie in the series, “Maze Runner: Death Cure,” will be releasing January 26th, and I figured I’d review the first two “Maze Runner” films in preparation for the third installment. Stay tuned for those reviews, and look forward to more great content! Did you watch the 75th Golden Globes show? What did you think? Let me know down below! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

“So I want all the girls watching here, now, to know that a new day is on the horizon! And when that new day finally dawns, it will be because of a lot of magnificent women, many of whom are right here in this room tonight, and some pretty phenomenal men, fighting hard to make sure that they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say “Me too” again.” -Oprah Winfrey

2017 Box Office: Little Room For Originality

mv5bote5njywntq3m15bml5banbnxkftztgwmzi1njy4mzi-_v1_sx1777_cr001777744_al_

Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! As it is the beginning of 2018, I feel it is appropriate to leave links to two posts down below for you to read in case you haven’t read them. My top 10 BEST movies of 2017, and my top 10 WORST movies of 2017. I’ve had fun making these lists, I’m sure you’ll have fun reading them, and I’m also interested in hearing what your best and worst films of the year are. So, read the posts, leave a like, comment, add Scene Before to your subscriptions through email or WordPress, and keep life going!

TOP 10 BEST MOVIES OF 2017: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2018/01/02/top-10-best-movies-of-2017-2/

TOP 10 WORST MOVIES OF 2017: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2018/01/02/top-10-worst-movies-of-2017/

Staying on topic, the end of the year and the start of a new one has a meaning when it comes to film. From one perspective it means January is here and a lot of crap is being put in theaters that people are gonna suffer through if all the award winning movies are high in ticket sales. Another perspective goes along the lines of what I just did with the posts above which I have links to, my top 10 best and worst movies of the year. Not only that, but we also have a bunch of award shows that are on the rise. January has the Golden Globes, the Screen Actors Guild Awards, the BAFTA awards, and the Critics’ Choice Awards. In February you got some stuff here and there, but when it comes to film, many people say the Academy Awards might be the only thing that matters (unless you’re that one guy who handed Warren Beatty the wrong card). When it comes to reflection, that’s not the limit to what’s been done this year so far. I’m pretty active on Twitter, and one account I occasionally surf is Collider. They posted a tweet which contained the five highest grossing films at the box office for 2017. This tweet had a link which lead to the highest grossing films of the year, looking over 2017’s box office winners and losers. Here’s the tweet:

This list reveals the top five for the specific category, and as I looked at the results, I’d say that it all makes a lick of sense. How do I feel about it? Honestly, not too good. Because a some time ago, I asked something about the future of movies, and so far nothing has been done about it. Although then again, it wasn’t that long ago that I asked. The question I asked was also the title of a post I did, the post is called “Where Are The Original Movies?” The answer, not here.

Of the top five films mentioned on this list, THREE are superhero films based on comic books, ONE is from a franchise that people recognize instantaneously once you put a picture of a lightsaber in front of them, and ONE is a live action remake that only adds a couple new things in of a Disney animation which is considered a classic by a lot of people. By the way, those aren’t the only two adaptations of the story! Oh yeah, did I mention FOUR of these have Disney at least partially associated with them? I will admit that I personally am at fault. I managed to see four of these films. These include “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” and “Wonder Woman.” I review movies, and it feels like a job where I don’t get paid because I don’t monetize my site at the moment, and I actually legit wanted to see all of these films.

Out of the four I saw, I only found one to be great, in fact it made my top five of the year, specifically “Wonder Woman.” I gave it a 10/10 in my review and while it’s not technically flawless, given the villain side of the story, I thought it was an amazing ride with Gal Gadot proving to the world that she is this kick-ass superhero. Plus I felt for the most part this seemed like it was not a studio-type film unlike 2016’s “Batman v. Superman,” it was more like one person (Patty Jenkins) unleashing their vision and sharing it with everyone.

When it comes to “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” it tried to be a different “Spider-Man” movie, but in the end, the execution could have been better. The script had Spidey cracking jokes all over the place. And I think that’s fine, this is Tom Holland playing him, and he played the character in “Captain America: Civil War,” another movie where Spidey cracks jokes. Not to mention, BRILLIANT jokes. Unfortunately, the brilliance wasn’t repeated in “Homecoming.” In my review, I gave it a 7/10, but right now it’s borderline 6-7/10. Speaking of failed attempts at humor, let’s talk about “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.”

When I saw the first trailer for “Guardians 2,” I was in instant hype mode. Granted, I don’t consider the first installment to be the best movie in the MCU, but I also think it is definitely one of the better ones. Not to mention, I consider it to be the most fun out of all the movies released in said cinematic universe. This second installment however wasn’t exactly terrible, but it should have been WAY better than it was. It shoves too much into one movie, kind of like “Age of Ultron,” and at the same time, it feels like it doesn’t feel it inserts too little. No pun intended, but BABY GROOT SUCKS! The humor seemed to land with just about the five-hundred other people watching the film alongside me, but I only laughed at various times. It just wasn’t that funny. The first one is lovable, quotable, and memorable. This one isn’t lovable, but you can say it’s quotable and memorable. I remember a turd joke. I remember a conversation about male genitalia. I will say that for the most part, “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” at least tried to be one thing. I can’t exactly say the same for the conundrum that is “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.”

I love “Star Wars.” There are so many days where I think about “Star Wars” and how much it has brought a tremendous influence on our culture. When it comes to “The Last Jedi,” it’s a very weird installment when it comes to the “Star Wars” saga, and I don’t mean that in a good way. I say that because you can look at a movie like “Colossal,” think of it as weird, and praise it for being weird. The way I’m using “weird” when it comes to this movie is not a good kind. I mean that as in, this movie is “not ‘Star Wars.'” I do appreciate it for not ripping off “The Empire Strikes Back,” but the way they’re taking a lot of the stuff shown in the movie made the whole experience more of a wreck the more I think about it. Also, I’m glad Porgs aren’t in the film for that long, but seriously, they can go to hell.

For the record, the results I talked about are domestic. These results make me wonder what the rest of the decade will look like for box office returns. In the 2010s decade, there have been a small number of original films making the top five for box office returns. These include “The Secret Life of Pets,” “Inside Out,” and “Frozen.” I will give credit to “Inside Out” because I do feel it deserved every penny it made. I watched that and it was extremely emotional. I did watch “The Secret Life of Pets” in the theater, and while it was a technically passable animation, it wasn’t exactly something I would ever want to watch again or show to a kid. I also watched a portion of “Frozen,” and it made me want to die. Beautiful animation, but what else does it have going for it?! The further we go in terms of cinematic history, the more I’ll probably miss 2009 because in that year, “Avatar” came out, and it shut the door on other movies at the box office. And while I do consider that movie to be overrated, and already somewhat dated, I do have to give credit because at the very least, it’s a property that nobody’s heard of.  People have picked up on how much it can be compared to movies like “Pocahontas,” but still. Although I wonder how many people confused it for “Avatar: The Last Airbender.” Sure, it’s from a well known director, but it’s still better than paying money to see “The Hunger Games.” Why did it make so much money? IT’S F*CKING POPULAR! But wait, there are other films on this list too. Just for the sake of letting out information, let’s add on the other top films at the 2017 box office. Just to tell you which ones are actually original ideas, I have those in bold.

6. IT
7. Thor: Ragnarok
8. Despicable Me 3
9. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
10. Justice League
11. Logan
12. The Fate of the Furious
13. Coco
14. Dunkirk
15. The LEGO Batman Movie
16. Get Out
17. The Boss Baby
18. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
19. Kong: Skull Island
20. Cars 3

As you can see, only TWO original films are in the top 20 for the 2017 box office numbers. Just a fun fact, I saw neither one of those, and I’m deeply disappointed in myself. I never got around to watching “Coco” because I don’t know anyone who would want to watch animations, but I heard so many great things about it. As for “Get Out,” I was in a similar situation, I don’t know many people who would want to watch a horror film. I almost picked it up on Blu-ray based on thoughts I had in the past, but I never got to it. Although for those who actually did manage to go see those films, I have tremendous respect for you. Admittedly, I saw five of these fifteen films from beginning to end. I saw another one, “Kong: Skull Island” for the first ten minutes, but my 4K Blu-ray player was having problems therefore not allowing me to watch the rest of the picture. Of the five I saw, I loved two of them. This seriously does beg a question I asked in the past. Why do people watch these movies?

If you want my theory, it’s because everyone is familiar with a particular property. This is why “Star Wars” has owned the box office for the past three years. Main saga installments such as “The Force Awakens” and “The Last Jedi” broke box office records because a large number of people wanted to see these films since it’s part of a well known franchise that a lot of people admire. They didn’t really know what the verdict was from critics who saw the film early, in fact many people, including myself, bought tickets as early as about two or so months prior to release. People went to see “Thor: Ragnarok” because it’s Marvel, the same can be said for “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.” Also, you can consider how both of those movies received positive ratings from critics. People saw “Logan” because the Wolverine’s in it. People saw “Justice League” because it’s DC, although in reality you can say that’s why some folks skipped this movie. You can also say because it has Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Cyborg, Aquaman, those people. People saw “The Fate of the Furious” because it’s “Fast and Furious.” Not to mention, it’s not that complicated of a movie, it’s not one of those films where you have to sit down and think. You just eat popcorn and let time go by. People saw “The LEGO Batman Movie” because it’s animated so it’s good for the kids, it has Batman, and “The LEGO Movie” was not only popular, but well received. People saw “Cars 3” because it’s animated, it’s from Pixar, there are a couple of installments leading up to it, and there’s a good chance your kid dragged you to it. You see my point?

I also have to say that studios are partially responsible for this craze. When studios like Disney put out another “Star Wars” movie or another Marvel movie, do you think they’re doing it because they want to put out a quality movie that will be talked about generations to come? It’s possible, however it’s also possible that they’re thinking with their wallet, or in this case their Scrooge McDuck money vault. Yes, I’m still talking about “The Force Awakens” today, and I think it’s an amazing movie. One of my biggest problems with it is that they played it safe, but it’s a very minor issue. There’s a good chance I’ll probably still be talking about “The Last Jedi” too, but I might not be talking about it saying that it’s a great movie. The name “Star Wars” will put almost anyone in the theater. If “The Phantom Menace” didn’t prove that already, these past few years certainly have. Disney also released “Beauty and the Beast,” which I heard is visually dazzling, but ultimately just the same story as the animated version, just told in live action, with a couple songs added in, and changing someone’s traits to make them homosexual. I’m not saying live action remakes from Disney are terrible, after all I really enjoyed “The Jungle Book.” I will blurt that I actually might not have the right to say what I’m saying because I didn’t see any version of “Beauty and the Beast.” This is the problem. Hollywood is just redoing old ideas and passing them off as new. It works for “Super Mario Bros,” not for Disney movies.

As for 2018, originality isn’t looking too great for Disney either. Let’s see what movies they have lined up:

  • A Wrinkle in Time (based on a book by Madeleine L’Engle)
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story (Star Wars)
  • Avengers: Infinity War (Marvel)
  • Black Panther (Marvel)
  • Ant-Man and the Wasp (Marvel)
  • Incredibles 2 (Pixar sequel)
  • The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (Based on a story and ballet)
  • Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 (Disney animation sequel)
  • Mary Poppins Returns (Title pretty much says it all)

It’s not just Disney to blame here. Let’s talk about some other unoriginal films coming out in 2018!

  • Deadpool 2
  • X-Men: Dark Phoenix
  • Ready Player One
  • Pacific Rim: Uprising
  • Rampage
  • Tomb Raider
  • Fifty Shades Freed
  • Creed 2
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
  • Bumblebee: The Movie
  • Aquaman
  • Fantastic Beasts and the Crimes of Grindenwald
  • Venom
  • Slender Man
  • The New Mutants
  • Sicario 2: Soldado
  • Johnny English 3
  • Goosebumps: Horror Land
  • The Grinch
  • Super Troopers 2
  • Scarface
  • The Equalizer 2
  • Barbie
  • Mission: Impossible 6
  • Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
  • Maze Runner: The Death Cure
  • Insidious: The Last Key
  • Animal Crackers
  • Ocean’s 8
  • The Purge: The Island
  • Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation
  • Teen Titans Go! to the Movies
  • Robin Hood
  • The Predator
  • God’s Not Dead: A Light in Darkness

You get the point by now…

I get that filmmaking is technically a business, and people use it to make money, but they have to realize what they’re doing to people who watch the films. They could walk in, walk out, and say that they had an experience. It could be good, it could be bad. The real question is: How many experiences like the ones I just described will have a good chunk of people who felt like they experienced something new? Granted, storytelling has been around for a long time. The oldest written story passed down to us, The “Epic of Gilgamesh,” was introduced to the world around 2100 BC. We’ve been telling stories for as long as time can stand. It’s quite possible that original stories are going the way of the woolly mammoth. In fact a lot of original stuff we’re actually getting now borrows elements from other pieces of work. At this point, I don’t really care if we get a new franchise or a new movie from something we haven’t technically watched in the past, but I want to see more of that and less sequels each and every day. I may be a picky eater, I always have been since I was a kid, but my tastes in film go like this: As long as the film’s good in any way possible, it’s cool. Do I like unoriginal work? Yes, as long as it’s good. I’m not saying every original film is good either. Heck, 2017 gave a ton of original crap! Films like “Gifted,” “Downsizing,” and “The Space Between Us.”

I’m also not saying every unoriginal film did well at the box office in 2017. Films like “Blade Runner 2049,” “xXx: Return of Xander Cage,” “Ghost in the Shell,” “Underworld: Blood Wars,” “Resident Evil: The Final Chapter,” “A Bad Moms Christmas,” “The Mummy,” and “The LEGO Ninjago Movie” didn’t appear to be as successful as other films during the year. By the way, for those of you who skipped out on “Blade Runner 2049,” you missed a work of art.

What I want studios and filmmakers to learn is this: It’s OK to take risks, it’s OK to be different, that’s what storytelling is about. Showing a unique vision to the world, not grabbing everyone’s wallet and swallowing it because of something they already know getting a new installment. How do you think Quentin Tarantino is popular today? How do you think he got popular in the first place? Is he doing the same thing as everyone else? Is he recycling old ideas? Sure, he definitely has influence from others, but his ideas are usually original so people usually view his movies as refreshing. Christopher Nolan has borrowed ideas from others, including his own brother, but at least he has done some stuff of his own like “Inception.” Not to mention, he stays away from traditional Hollywood conventions, even in unoriginal content like “The Dark Knight.” Another director I have my eyes on now is Nacho Vigolando. He wrote and directed “Colossal,” one of my top films of 2017.

The concept of “Colossal” itself, takes a number of elements from other movies, but in end, it’s truly its own thing. A girl named Gloria (Anne Hathaway) is kicked out of her apartment by her boyfriend who goes by the name Tim (Dan Stevens). Gloria moves back to her hometown where she reunites with a childhood friend, Oscar (Jason Sudeikis). As the movie progresses, we are shown that a monster recently attacked Seoul, South Korea. The thing that everyone has yet to realize, Gloria is responsible for the monstrous actions. You can do so many things with this, and what they did with it was just imaginative. It tries to be a lot of things at once, and believe it or not, it actually works! Films like this are something that I could imagine inspiring a generation of filmmakers. The problem is that it’s not all that popular, it’s an independent film, and was never really marketed all that well. In fact, I never really anticipated “Colossal” to be the absolute masterpiece that it is. People never really talked about it much before or even during the release. The same can’t really be said for a chunk of unoriginal content.

One of the movies I’m really looking forward to in 2018 is “Incredibles 2.” Not much has been shown for it yet, but regardless, I want to see it. Why? Because the original film is my favorite animation ever made! This just really makes me wonder, how rare is it for someone to actually go on for a long time, hyping for something totally original? Hype is something that people usually have for unoriginal content for no other reason other than because what they’re hyping for IS that unoriginal content. I’ve hyped for original content, but the more I look around, that’s not the case with everyone else. Look at all the hype “Avengers: Infinity War” is getting right now! This based on comic book story has been built up for quite some time through the release of a ton of films, and now that it’s almost here, there’s an enormous craze regarding it.

I’m not saying all unoriginal ideas are bad, I think I’ve made that clear already. In fact, I want to say one of them could be a future masterpiece. This year I was one of those people who actually got off their ass, went to the theater, and saw “Blade Runner 2049.” Just about everyone who saw the film would agree with me when I say it’s good. I’d bet not everyone would say they enjoyed it as much as I did. There will inevitably be those people who were bored out of their minds due to the movie’s slow pace, but in the end, this movie is just a testament to cinema. From a technical perspective, I was blown away. Roger Deakins’s cinematography was some of the best I’ve seen all year. The visual effects were eye candy that you’d want in your mouth instantly. Watching every single frame pass by was like looking at neon Heaven. Story-wise, I was also impressed, especially for a sequel like this. It develops all of its characters perfectly, continues in a future that probably will not happen entirely, but based on the world of “Blade Runner,” it does seem like something that would make sense from a certain angle. I’ll remind you that the original film came out in 1982 and took place in 2019, this sequel released thirty five years after, 2017, and took place in 2049. Sadly, not many people saw this when you compare the results this movie got against others. Although you might as well consider that not many people left their houses to go and see the first “Blade Runner” either. One of the biggest things I appreciated out of this sequel is how it didn’t set the stage for endless sequels or a cinematic universe. It felt like a movie, not a neverending TV series.

As interesting as cinematic universes are, they are becoming more and more common and the concept is just becoming rather boring. I will say, I have an idea for a cinematic universe, I think it could work, but as far as standalone franchises, I’m only incorporating two of them. It’s simple and effective. Standalone sequels have a beginning, middle, and end. They can give a sense of satisfaction. I’m not saying cinematic universe movies don’t have a beginning, middle, and end, but meshed in there is setup. Sometimes it works, sometimes it just comes off like a kid trying to get attention. Despite how much “Avengers: Infinity War” may sound like a finale for the MCU, trust me when I say it’s not. For one thing, there’s going to be a fourth “Avengers” film the following year, and Marvel still has more plans for films afterwards. They have another “Spider-Man” movie and another “Guardians of the Galaxy” movie! According to James Gunn, writer and director of the first two “Guardians of the Galaxy” films, not to mention the possible writer and director of the upcoming third installment, he says that “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” will expand the cosmic universe. Honestly, I don’t know how to feel. At least “Two and a Half Men” had a conclusion! It took about twelve or so years to get to it, but it happened! Although you know what could happen once this cinematic universe ends? One word. Reboot. And you know what? It’ll probably make some f*cking money!

You know what else could be true? I don’t know, we’re probably just reaching the bottom of the barrel and running out of ideas. Although I can’t say that’s true because I have an idea for an original film. I won’t say what it is, but if any major Hollywood studio wants in on it, I’d be happy to send it to them. I don’t have the script finished yet, but I can definitely work on it if you want to see this idea realized in the future.

I’m not against unoriginal content, but from my personal viewpoint on society, these results make it seem like that’s all anyone watches now. Is it a popular thing? Someone watched it. Is it based on something that happened before? Someone watched it. I just want to see a future where at least some original content gets to shine as much as unoriginal content. Well, as long as said original content is good. I want to say to both studios and audiences, take some steps off the beaten path. I did that when I saw “Colossal,” I was originally planning to see “Kong: Skull Island,” but “Colossal” was the movie I ultimately had time for, and it was f*cking worth the ride.

Thanks for reading this post! As far as upcoming reviews go, I do plan on seeing this film called “The Commuter,” there’s a chance you may have heard of it on TV. It stars Liam Neeson as a person on a train who’s caught in a criminal conspiracy. The director who’s doing this film directed “The Shallows,” which was pretty great, but it’s January, so anything could happen.

Also I want to inform you that pretty soon I’ll be starting a new mini-series of reviews, specifically for the “Maze Runner” movies. I’m gonna watch “The Maze Runner” and “Maze Runner: The Scorch Trails,” and I’ll review the first film one week, and follow up with a review for the second film the week afterwards. This is all being done in preparation for “Maze Runner: The Death Cure,” which comes out January 26th. Stay tuned for those reviews and more great content! I want to know, which movies did you see in 2017? Did you see any that made the top results at the box office? Do you think we need more original content? Would you watch more original content? Leave your comments below! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

Top 10 WORST Movies of 2017

Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! I just posted my top 10 BEST movies of 2017, so that means I now have to do my top 10 WORST movies of 2017. I’ve seen a good number of movies this year, some of which were great, some OK, and others that I probably don’t want to watch again unless I was being paid, or maybe I don’t want the money because the movie would torture me enough to where I beg for mercy. This list is dedicated to THOSE films. The worst of the worst. Just like with my BEST movies list I’ll remind you that I not seen every single movie that has come out in 2017. So if you’re wondering why movies like “Fifty Shades Darker,” “Resident Evil: The Final Chapter,” or “Jigsaw” are not present here, consider what I just said your reason. There’s tons of crap that comes out that there’s not enough time to watch it all. Not to mention I haven’t seen “Fifty Shades of Grey,” nor have I seen any prior “Resident Evil” or “Saw” installments so it would be even weirder watching those movies. So there you go, my case stands. Also, this is my personal opinion so if you’re wondering why I didn’t put a certain movie on the list, there’s a chance I didn’t see it or I actually admired it. Another rule I’ll state is that the films I’m talking about had to have been shown in the theater at least once, and as far as I know, I haven’t seen any theater times listed anywhere for “Sharknado 5: Global Swarming” so that movie’s off the list. Before we proceed onto my top 10, I have two dishonorable mentions I feel need to be briefly talked about on here.

Dishonorable Mention: The Glass Castle

My first honorable mention is “The Glass Castle.” This is based on a book I didn’t read in its entirety, but having gone through a portion of it, I have to automatically say the book is not only better than the movie, but actually something worth your time.

Dishonorable Mention: Gifted

Lastly for the brief mentions, we have “Gifted,” which is a word that associates with the movie’s title, a character in the movie with said title, but not the movie itself. It has solid performances and nice location choices, but the amount of product placement this movie had made it feel like a commercial.

Now that we have that out of the way, let’s reflect on my poor life choices. These are my top 10 WORST movies of 2017.

#10: Transformers: The Last Knight

(Sigh) That’s right. This s*it happened. “Transformers: The Last Knight” happened. I know a lot of people don’t like the “Transformers” movies, but I will say that each one has at least one redeeming quality about them. The score, the effects, I will even go as far as to say that the first movie had a solid story. The experience I had watching this film in the theater is one of the worst I EVER had. I can imagine everyone who saw this in IMAX got a slightly better experience than I did seeing this film in Real-D 3D. While some movies partially shot with IMAX cameras change its aspect ratio only when shown in IMAX, not to mention every once in awhile during the runtime like with “The Dark Knight” and “The Dark Knight Rises,” I actually experienced aspect ratio changes in a standard theater! I mean, WHAT?! This doesn’t bring ANY immersion to the table! Unless I was seeing this in something like RPX or Cinemark XD or something else along those lines, watching this movie anywhere but IMAX would be a s*it filled ride down a toilet! Unlike other movies partially shot in IMAX which changes its ratio after some period of time, the ratio kept changing every other second, and it almost felt like there was no reason for it! The only real positive I can give to this film is that it is actually somewhat funny at times and the effects are also kind of cool. Other than that, it’s pretty much the same thing you’ve seen in previous “Transformers” installments shoved into this one. Here’s some advice: Either end the franchise, start over, or just TRY to make a good movie.

#9: Snatched

This next movie is Goldie Hawn’s return to the big screen. Having seen this film, she should have waited just a bit longer. After seeing “Snatched,” I can confirm it is complete and total s*it. I will be somewhat fair to this considering it is after all a stupid comedy so it’s not really trying to come off as Shakespeare material, but in all reality, this movie was bad. The movie reminded me of “The Guilt Trip,” which a good amount of people didn’t like, but I thought was all right for what it was. So in a way, you can say this is a worse version of “The Guilt Trip.” Although instead of a parent and child going on a road trip, they’re on vacation in paradise. The experience of watching the movie itself is rather unfunny, awkward, and you grow to dislike some of the characters as you watch it. One thing I really hate in comedies, maybe depending on the movie, is when you can predict what’s coming. This movie has that for me. There was one really funny scene and a rather chuckleworthy character, but if the movie didn’t have those elements mixed in, it would be higher on the list. Did I mention this movie’s complete and total s*it? Cause if I didn’t, “Snatched” is complete and total s*it!

#8: The Circle

mv5bmjy2otm2njc3ml5bml5banbnxkftztgwndgzodu3mti-_v1_sy1000_cr006741000_al_

Let’s just say that the movie I’m preparing to tell you about is one you’ve never seen before. I tell you the plot is rather relevant in ways, it’s based on a book liked by many readers, it has cast members including Tom Hanks (Saving Private Ryan, Forrest Gump), Emma Watson (Beauty and the Beast, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone), John Boyega (Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, Attack the Block), Bill Paxton (Weird Science, Aliens), Karen Gillan (Guardians of the Galaxy, Doctor Who), Patton Oswalt (King of Queens, Ratatouille), ALL of those people! Then you see the movie, and kick me in the f*cking crotch. What movie I’m talking about? I’m talking about “The Circle.” Aside from the fact that the plot could have been executed better and that there’s periods of the film where basically nothing happens, the movie just makes you think, why are all of these actors together?! How do you get all of these heavyweights/popular names all in one movie and have it suck ass?! The movie’s marketing makes you think that Tom Hanks is going to be in the film for quite some time, but he isn’t really! He’s barely even there at all! In fact, speaking of actors here, what purpose does John Boyega serve? For what I recall upon first watching the movie, you could literally remove him from the picture and have little to no change to the story, at least that’s what I recall. Oh yeah, and speaking of abominable things this movie has, the ending sucks. This ending’s so bad that as far as this decade goes, it rivals movies like “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” and the “Ghostbusters” reboot. The good news is, if you are somehow curious to watch this piece of crap, it’s free if you’re an Amazon Prime member (at the time of making this list)! So if you have Prime, you have the option to subject yourself to this unbelievably atrocious torture.

#7: Underworld: Blood Wars

mv5bmjqymdk5oteznv5bml5banbnxkftztgwmjmwndu0mdi-_v1_sy1000_cr006741000_al_

Kate Beckinsale. Badass, right? Not here! Not in “Underworld: Blood Wars” she isn’t! This is fifth installment in the “Underworld” franchise, and at this point, it needs to stop! In fact, it looks like it’s gonna keep going on, I heard it’s getting a TV series sometime in the future. The whole idea behind “Underworld” isn’t that heavy, it’s a world of humans, vampires, and werewolves, it’s a time of war, and it might as well be an excuse for mindless action. I enjoyed the first two “Underworld” installments, but based on how I feel about the material released after, that’s where the series should have stopped. I mean, to be fair, there’s one good thing about the movie and that’s the fact that it’s really short compared to a lot of other movies released nowadays, so you can say that implies I spent less time suffering here than I did during other films.

#6: The Only Living Boy in New York

Coming in at #6 is a movie I watched towards the year’s end since it was free on Amazon. By the way, the fact that this movie was free was the only perk that came with watching it, because other than that, I gotta say “The Only Living Boy In New York” is a piece of crap. Kate Beckinsale plays one of the lead roles in this film and I hate saying that because that means “Underworld: Blood Wars” isn’t the only dumpster fire featuring said actress! This movie was directed by Marc Webb, who also directed another movie on this list which is featured in the honorable mentions, “Gifted.” I will say though, at least “Gifted” was funny at times, it had some likable characters, and a hint of charm to it. Here in this movie, it almost feels like nobody’s happy, the main character’s mopey, the mistress he falls in love with during the movie is confused and thinks more like a computer running on Dial-Up Internet than a human, nobody seems like they’re in a good mood. Also, let’s talk about the music. By itself, the music isn’t all that bad, but at times, it feels a little too epic for a movie such as this. At times it felt like something that would be appropriate for something like an adventure flick as opposed to a drama. The way people behave in this movie almost gave me a headache. The choices they make, the way they act around each other, the way they are themselves, it’s just awkward, boring, or painful to watch. Also, the reason behind the movie’s title is something I didn’t care for. I didn’t care for how the main character wanted to write and I cared more for the mistress story. And this is really freaking sad if you ask me because as the owner of Scene Before, I’m a writer!

#5: Downsizing

mv5bndyxndq5otyxov5bml5banbnxkftztgwotcyodkxndm-_v1_sy1000_cr006401000_al_1

Coming in at #5 is “Downsizing.” Prior to this list’s publication, this was the most recent 2017 release I saw, meaning 2017 ended with a big whimper. On paper, this film sounds interesting. A guy is shrunken down and goes to live in this space with other tiny beings. Trust me when I say that this movie just makes you rack your mind up with tons of questions about the film’s practicality. Not only that, but the movie is just BOOORING! If there’s a clever way to describe “Downsizing,” I’d describe it like this: In the first act, it might as well be called “Questioning the Logic of Everything: The Movie,” and the following acts are basically what can be referred to as “C-SPAN with no politics and more fictional characters.” If Matt Damon made a bad decision on doing “The Great Wall” this year, that logically means he made an even worse decision by doing this piece of s*it.

#4: How to Be a Latin Lover

mv5bytawzdk5nzitm2u0ms00nduxltgwmdatnzvmzdmxmzmxmwyxxkeyxkfqcgdeqxvyntawodk1nzy-_v1_sy1000_cr006481000_al_

There are some films that are funny such as “The Hangover,” some that try to be funny but fail such as “Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb,” and then there are those that give you the illusion that you just died, you entered Hell, and it’s the Devil that’s torturing you. Case and point, “How to Be a Latin Lover.” Woooow. If “Snatched” is complete and total s*it, then “How to Be a Latin Lover” is complete and total birds*it. I didn’t see this in the theater, but I was eager to check it out once it came out on Blu-ray because I found it used for a reasonable price. This is a comedy that not only has jokes we’ve seen before HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF TIMES (sex jokes up the wazoo, some of which are just cringeworthy to say the least), but also contains lazy jokes that I never thought I’d hear. Speaking of cringeworthy, there are a number of characters that really made me feel as if I was getting ten needles shoved in my eyes at the same time. Kristen Bell was just cartoony to the point of absurdity, the lead character played by Eugenio Derbez was unlikable, the henchmen are just giving forced jokes that are just painful to listen to. The jokes given by the henchmen could entertain kids watching say “Alvin and the Chipmunks 5: Chip Just Got Real.” That’s not a real movie, but it better not be in the future.

#3: Father Figures

If “Snatched” is complete and total s*it, and “How to Be a Latin Lover” is complete and total birds*it, then “Father Figures” is the biggest piece of dogs*it of all time! Imagine you’re tied to a chair, a dog is magically floating over your head, and said dog is taking a dump in your mouth for almost two hours. That would be irritating, right? I refuse to call this movie what they want me to call it! It’s not “Father Figures!” It’s “Bastards!” It’s a somewhat funnier title yet still appropriate for the story! Although if you want to be more accurate, it should be called “Bastard” because in reality, this movie is one f*cking bastard. Owen Wilson and Ed Helms aren’t funny in this movie, the only good parts about it are Terry Bradshaw and JK Simmons. Ving Rhames, AKA the guy whose voice you hear in the Arby’s commercials is in the movie, so that’s a plus. I can’t say he stands out. But at least I get to say he’s in it! Out of all the films I’ve seen this year, this one probably contains the scene that shrank my brain more than any other. This movie was draggy, annoying, and overall just unpleasant to watch. Avoid it like the plague!

#2: The Space Between Us

mv5bnjyzodu1otkwn15bml5banbnxkftztgwmda3mtmwmdi-_v1_sy1000_cr006751000_al_

Sci-fi is one of my goto genres when it comes to naming great films. I can give a ton of them. “Star Wars,” “Blade Runner,” “The Matrix,” “Interstellar,” “Back to the Future,” “The Martian,” “Arrival,” all of those movies show my love for sci-fi, not to mention film in general. Movies like “The Space Between Us?” Not so much. Seriously, what was this thing?! I have a friend who saw this movie, she got the “privilege” of seeing it with the rest of her work crew, and she f*cking hated it. This movie, like “How to Be a Latin Lover,” is a movie that I didn’t see in theaters, but picked up once I found it used on Blu-ray. It’s an absolute rarity that I can’t stand watching a science fiction flick as much as I wasn’t able to stand this one. Like, what the f*ck did I watch? The whole plot of the film is that two beings are attracted to each other romantically, one’s on Mars, one’s on Earth, and we have to suffer through one of the worst romances ever put in a movie. These two have no chemistry, and I felt like I was gonna die watching this. Oh yeah, and some of the camerawork and editing sucks too. I don’t think there’s many movies that annoyed me as much as this one when it comes to jumpcuts. It’s just so stupid! As much as I like Tom Holland as the MCU’s Spider-Man, I’m kind of mad they didn’t cast Asa Butterfield as that character because if they did there’s a possibility we wouldn’t have to have seen this garbage.

#1: The Emoji Movie

We’ve reached the bottom of the list folks. We’ve officially broken ground and went under! This is #1! There’s only one word that can describe this movie, and that word, is s*it. In fact, I think it’s very appropriate because this movie actually has a piece of s*it in it. At #1, I give you, the movie I DID NOT WANT TO SEE, but I did anyhow to fulfill the requests of those who wanted me to watch this, and to prove that I’m willing to sit through any movie. My #1 worst movie of 2017 is… “The Emoji Movie.” Remember how I said in my top 10 best list that “Colossal” was jaw-dropping? Well, this is jaw-dropping as well. I dropped my jaw as vomit exited my mouth thinking about this piece of crap. OK, I didn’t do that, but really, what minds thought this movie was a good idea? Well, according to the poster, Columbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Animation, and I’d like to give a giant f*ck you to both of them. I know I usually swear on these posts, and I have gotten some criticism for it, but f*ck it, I gotta do what I gotta do. And what I gotta do is say, f*ck this movie! Speaking of which, while I may swear on various posts, I don’t think I’ve done it to the extent which I did during my review/rant for “The Emoji Movie.” The post was so graphic in terms of language that I actually had to provide a warning in the title, which is a first for this blog! Here are some actual quotes from my tirade–err I mean, review, sorry, review:

“Some dumbasses watched some animations and said “Oh yeah, that was the s*it!,” and thought “Let’s try to recreate those, but with Emojis!” So they went to Sony Pictures Animation and suggested this s*itshow of an idea to them and Sony Pictures Animation told them, “Welcome aboard! Time to capitalize on the name “Emoji!” Who cares if it’s s*it? We decided that “The Angry Birds Movie” was a good idea so let’s become known as the phone movie gods!” My response to that is, thanks Sony Animation! Thanks for being a bunch of f*cking twerps that don’t understand the concepts of art and storytelling (flips two birds)!”

 

“It almost felt like Sony Animation or someone else behind this film thought about contacting a bunch of companies who make apps and say “Hey, you want to be in our s*itf*ck in the ass?” and they somehow put them all in there so they can just make s*itloads of money!”

 

““The Emoji Movie” is nothing but a rip off of better animations, a s*itty idea which became a s*itty movie, and a poorly written, anger-inducing f*ckpile of a film created by a bunch of c*cksucking jackasses that just want to capitialize on a trend! If this movie makes enough money, there’s a slight chance that some motherf*cker might make a “Fidget Spinner” movie! I have a good idea for one, but we DON’T NEED ONE!”

 

And I just realized, I haven’t even gotten into the film itself. It’s basically an hour and a half of TJ Miller being this Emoji that doesn’t fit into its own environment, he goes out on a quest to become a normal Emoji, and while this is happening, we sometimes cut to the real world outside the phone where TJ Miller is and we see this teenager who has a crush on a girl. At the same time, his phone is acting up and he wants to solve the problem. This is because of certain, catastrophic events if you will. Throughout we get this quest that has elements of “Wreck-It Ralph,” “The LEGO Movie,” and “Inside Out.” Although unlike those movies, this movie did its story in such a lazy fashion. Product placement up the wazoo, annoying characters up the wazoo, forced plot points up the wazoo, forced characterization that doesn’t even fit up the wazoo, and s*itty dialogue up the wazoo. The only positive I’ll give towards “The Emoji Movie” is the animation, it is passable and if this movie were silent, I imagine some people would be fine watching this. But here’s the thing. It’s 2017. Good animation is a requirement by now, it’s something a lot of folks expect in their movies. This movie, story-wise is dumb as f*ck, and character-wise, is full of crap. “The Emoji Movie” is not only one of the worst movies of the year, I will even go as far as to say, it’s the all time worst animation I’ve ever seen. It’s stupid on paper! So imagine how much dumber it is on a screen! This movie is worse than cancer! This movie is worse than Hitler! This movie is worse than getting a sword shoved up your ass! This movie is worse than any other movie I’ve seen in 2017.

Guys! 2017 is history! I think that is something that a small part of me never thought I’d say. This year not only wasn’t the greatest for movies, it was probably the worst for me personally. I may be a Negative Nancy because there were a number of positive moments in 2017, such as getting to meet the cast of “Revenge of the Nerds,” getting to see an IMAX 70mm presentation, and getting a chance to do a ton of reviews for the latest in film. Although in reality, this year was shrouded in f*ckery. The US alone is a proper example. We have a controversial group of people alongside a controversial leader of the country. We have a lot of sexual harassment scandals coming out of nowhere, which is good for getting the word out, but they occasionally involve people who have been admired. We also have the “new Internet.” Net Neutrality has been repealed, meaning that the Internet itself can be more expensive from a user perspective, which could mean that you have to pay to read my blog (at least I think that’s possible). By the way, f*ck FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. Seriously though, the year’s over, and it’s time to move on! I would like to thank everyone for reading my blog in 2017, and I hope to see more people reading it during 2018! I think personally that 2018 will manage to be worse than 2017, but only time will tell, and I really want to get off that topic now. Thanks for reading this countdown! I hope your 2018 goes well, I’m hoping to review more movies for you guys, unleash more content, and I hope you enjoy it all! I mentioned at the beginning of this post that I did my top 10 BEST movies of 2017, and if you want to read that, click the red box below that says “Top 10 BEST Movies of 2017.” Stay tuned for more reviews, more countdowns, other great content! I want to know, what are your worst movies of 2017? Do you think I missed a certain film? Let know about it and maybe I’ll agree, and if I haven’t seen it, I know now not to watch it! Leave all of that info down below! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

Top 10 BEST Movies of 2017

Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! It’s now that time of year, 2017 is over, we’re heading into 2018, another year down, another one to go! Now that we’re here, it’s time to count down my top 10 BEST movies of 2017! As far as 2017 goes, I wasn’t exactly as impressed by many of the movies I saw that came out in this particular year as I was in 2016, but there were definitely some options to choose from for this list. By the way, that statement shocks me given how terrible or underwhelming some of the big blockbuster or summer films were to me in 2016 (Indepndence Day: Resurgence, Ghostbusters, Suicide Squad). Before we start the list, let me just remind you that I have not seen every single movie that has come out during 2017, so if you’re wondering why “Logan” isn’t on this list, that’s why. Also, this is MY list, not your list, nor is it anyone else’s list. If you have a top movies of 2017 list, it should be formed based on your own experiences, because ultimately there’s a chance you could disagree with a certain pick I have here. Before we dive into my top 10, let me just have you know that there are forty-six possible movies to choose from for this list, I saw more than that number as far as 2017 movies go, but not all of them were theatrically released. Since there are forty-six to pick from, not all of them could be in my top 10, but just because I’m nice, I’m gonna do something I didn’t do last year, and include two films that I believe deserve honorable mentions.

Honorable Mention: John Wick: Chapter 2

My first honorable mention is “John Wick: Chapter 2,” a sequel which does what it needs to do. Keep some parts of what made the first movie interesting, while still progressing the franchise’s universe. It’s action scenes have extended shots, which I admire because it doesn’t give me a headache. Also, the mirror scene is badass!

Honorable Mention: Atomic Blonde

On the topic of action, my next honorable mention goes to “Atomic Blonde,” a really intriguing flick which shows lots of noir inspiration. It also has one of the most well shot action sequences of the year, specifically the scene on the stairwell.

Now that we have that out of the way, let’s get rocking and rolling! These are my top 10 BEST movies of 2017!

#10: The Big Sick

Starting off this list is “The Big Sick.” This film is basically about how Kumail Nanjiani met his wife, Emily. Who plays Kumail in this film? Well, he plays himself. And while I will admit that’s kind of playing it safe, it’s done very well. Overall this film was lovable from start to finish, I love a lot of the performances here, especially Holly Hunter’s. I’m a guy so love stories aren’t exactly my thing, but this was a really enjoyable look at a relationship, not to mention a real one. I am curious to know how much of this was fact and how much was fiction, but only time will tell. Also, I’m glad we finally got Ray Romano doing some good work once again instead of another forced “Ice Age” sequel that you’ll try to forget once you finish watching it. One of this film’s distributors is Amazon Studios, and as much as I’m somewhat concerned that Amazon might take over the world, or perhaps take it over alongside Disney, I’m glad they’re making films because most of the content coming out of Amazon Studios is worth your time. This is just one of them. Speaking of which…

#9: Crown Heights

I didn’t start 2017 off anticipating, looking forward to, or even thinking about watching “Crown Heights,” but after watching it, I was given an absolute surprise if there ever was one. This movie is based on the true story on the false accusation involving Colin Warner. Did I know who Colin was prior to this film? I wouldn’t say I did, but now that I saw him, I have to say I felt bad for him. This movie had a job, and that is to make us root for this one guy who wasn’t given a proper verdict in court, and the movie did that. I’m somewhat interested to do some research and see if there’s anything this movie didn’t cover, but I thought the movie, in general, was awesome. The acting was great, the atmosphere was indescribably perfect, the scenes had the right emotions at the right times. I got to watch this film for free on Amazon, and if I don’t like the film, I do think to myself that at the very least I didn’t pay much to see said film. I had that experience when watching films like “The Wall” and “The Only Living Boy In New York.” Luckily, “Crown Heights” stayed out of that territory.

#8: Mission Control: The Unsung Heroes of Apollo

#8 is something that went under the radar for a lot of people, and that is a documentary called “Mission Control: The Unsung Heroes of Apollo.” Yes, this is a documentary, but I wouldn’t say I’m cheating with this entry because it is feature length, not to mention it was shown in some theaters. This movie premiered at South by Southwest, it was also shown at the Sarasota Film Festival, then a couple weeks after Sarasota, it released theatrically and on several streaming services. The movie wasn’t shown in any theaters around me, but I did manage to watch it on Amazon. I would like to thank one of my best pals, Kayla, for mentioning this movie at one point and bringing it to my attention, otherwise I would have never watched this. If you know the stories behind the Apollo missions detail by detail, chances are you’re gonna probably know what’s coming here. Although if you don’t know what these missions are as well as other people know them, this movie goes into detail about it and it does provide some decent explanation throughout. I can still remember sitting on my bed, I’m watching this on my TV, and they get to the Apollo 11 segment, which I did know about and I imagine a lot of other people share that particular knowledge. As I’m watching, I’m on the edge of my seat. Oh yeah, and Apollo 13, I remember one of the interviewees giving some of the funniest and all time greatest phrases ever spoken while reflecting on an event.

JIM LOVELL: “After the flight were discussions with the control people, I said well, we thought we would deliberately not talk to you, so that might make a good movie one of these days.”

This is overall a great documentary, I do recommend it, not just if you’re a space junkie or a history buff, but if you’re just looking for something good to watch, it’s a real fun journey.

#7: Baby Driver

mv5bmjm3mjq1mzkxnl5bml5banbnxkftztgwodk1odgymji-_v1_sy1000_cr006741000_al_

“Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Fast & Furious,” “La La Land,” combine those three movies and tell me what you get. Don’t know? I’ll tell you. One epic thrill ride I like to call “Baby Driver!” This movie was my introduction to Edgar Wright (Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Shaun of the Dead) and after seeing this film on the big screen, I want to go back and watch a lot of his other films because from a cinematography standpoint, this movie stands as a beast. I mentioned this film is kind of like “Fast & Furious,” and that’s because of the action and car chases, but in all reality, this is better than any “Fast & Furious” movie ever released because the camera doesn’t cut as much when you’re simply trying to enjoy some action! Ansel Elgort surprised me wholeheartedly with his amazing performance, and F*CK IT! I’ll say it! Kevin Spacey was awesome here! I know about the whole allegation thing and it is insane, but I can’t help but point out a simple positive this film had!

#6: The LEGO Batman Movie

In 2014, “The LEGO Movie” came out, it was awesome. Now one of its major characters is getting a spinoff in the movie’s universe and damn it turned out to be just as good! I give you, “The LEGO Batman Movie!” When I watched “The LEGO Movie,” Will Arnett’s interpretation of Batman undoubtedly made him the best character in the film from my personal view, and the Caped Crusader continues to show that here. The tone is set right from the beginning! You know how in “Deadpool” they went in a spoof direction for the opening credits? They didn’t do that here really, but they did happen to go in said direction for the title sequence and the pre-end credits sequence as well, which was hysterical to say the least! The script was hilarious, the jokes were timed well and everything was fast paced, the chemistry between Batman and Robin was played out perfectly here! I also want to give massive kudos to whoever decided to include all sorts of Warner Brothers affiliated characters in the climax! I mean, HOLY CRAP! YOU HAVE “MATRIX” CHARACTERS IN A KIDS MOVIE AND IT ACTUALLY WORKED! Before we move on, let’s also not forget the epic song in the beginning.

“Who always pays their taxes?”
“NOT Batman!”

Also, something I have to get off my chest is that there’s one character in this movie, Alfred to be specific, and he’s played by Ralph Fiennes, who also plays Voldemort in “Harry Potter.” This movie also has Voldemort in it, but he’s being playing by Eddie Izzard. I have nothing against Eddie Izzard, but how awesome would it have been for Ralph to play Voldemort here?

#5: Wonder Woman

mv5byjk1yzq4mgmtmzlmoc00nwqxlthjmtmty2zknjvjmgmyn2zhxkeyxkfqcgdeqxvynjczote0mzm-_v1_

This may be hard to believe based on how this movie’s universe prior to this film’s release was chaotic, but this was my most anticipated film of the year, and holy crap those expectations were met! What movie am I talking about? I’m talking about “Wonder Woman.” Everything about this movie was done the way it needed to be done. My only criticisms of this film is bits and pieces of the story considering it’s rather cliche. Also, the villian was somewhat forgettable. You can say it takes a lot of inspiration from 1978’s “Superman” and borrows elements from 2011’s “Thor” and “Captain America: The First Avenger.” Doesn’t change the fact that the cliches were handled extremely well! Gal Gadot proves to the world that she IS Wonder Woman, Patty Jenkins’s vision was very well realized, the score was awesome, Wonder Woman’s theme is one of the best themes I’ve heard for a hero in my entire life! Oh, what’s the other thing? WE FINALLY HAVE A FEMALE SUPERHERO ORIGIN STORY THAT DOESN’T SUCK! In fact, it’s not just good, it’s kick-ass to the tenth degree!

#4: Dunkirk

This next movie just tells you one thing. Christopher Nolan’s a f*cking genius. That’s right! Coming in at #4, is “Dunkirk!” This was undoubtedly one of my most anticipated movies of the year. Christopher Nolan is directing, so how could I NOT look forward to this? The guy has directed some of my favorite films of all time. These include “Interstellar,” “Inception,” “Memento,” films such as those! From a story, this is something that is extremely experimental, and I’d say it worked out. One key difference between this and other war films like “Saving Private Ryan” is that you don’t really take any time to get to know any of the characters. The whole movie is essentially one giant action sequence, which is what war is. There’s no sitting down for breaks! There’s no talking with others for fun! There’s no looking at the camera to tell how important you are to an audience! There’s no crying in baseball! Actually, take out that last one. THIS IS WAR! While I admit, upon first experience, I was trying to wrap my head around everything, including the non-linear story, I will state that when I saw the movie, it was one of the greatest experiences I’ve ever had in a theater. I went to see the movie in IMAX 70mm, and if you didn’t get a chance to watch the movie in that format, I’m sorry you missed out because it was absolutely worth every penny. That’s not saying you can’t watch this movie anywhere else, it’s just enhanced in some places compared to others. There were several sequences where the sound was inside me and the full frame IMAX projection was unleashed to its total potential. I bought the movie on 4K the day it came out on home video. I didn’t have a 4K Blu-ray player, but I had a standard one, so that lead to me rewatching the movie on standard Blu-ray, and the film looked like a detailed painting. This film is what actually going to the theater is all about. Not renting a movie on DVD, not streaming it on Netflix, but getting off your ass, getting in your onmyassmobile, and heading straight to the movie theater.

#3: The Disaster Artist

mv5bognkmzlimgmtmdi5ni00otzkltgymtytnzk5zty1njvhyjvmxkeyxkfqcgdeqxvyntazmty4mda-_v1_sy1000_sx675_al_

Up next, we have, “The Disaster Artist.” This film is based on the making of “The Room,” a so bad it’s good movie that gained a cult following over time. I was so excited for this film to come out, that I anticipated it more than I did for “The Last Jedi!” I watched “The Room” before this movie came out and I have to say that everything which is being said about it, I can totally side with. It’s a stupid movie, but it’s the kind of stupid that you have to see. On that subject, “The Disaster Artist” is brilliant, and it’s the kind of brilliant that you have to see. Despite waiting three weeks, I got to watch this film in a crowded theater, and it was an utter blast. It’s definitely the funniest movie of the year, James Franco not only did a great job acting, but also directing this film. It’s not just James’s acting chops that are unleashed to full potential. You’ve also got some killer performances from actors such as Dave Franco, Seth Rogen, and Ali Graynor. This film is a great example of how hard it is to make a movie, and how much harder it is to do it in Hollywood. In fact, based on what’s unfolded during the picture, you can say it also tells you how hard living in Hollywood as someone who works in the film industry, regardless of whether it’s film or TV we’re talking about truly is. To me, in a way, “The Disaster Artist” is this year’s “La La Land,” although I’d say this is actually better than “La La Land” because it’s a thousand times funnier!

#2: Blade Runner 2049

mv5bmjm3njcxndm4ml5bml5banbnxkftztgwmji4ndizmzi-_v1_sy1000_cr006481000_al_

They say that sequels usually don’t surpass the original. Whether or not this movie does, is debatable, but it doesn’t change the fact that the overall experience of watching “Blade Runner 2049” was probably one of the greatest I’ve ever had. When I originally saw this film, I gave it a 9/10, and that was because a number of characters almost felt like they didn’t have too much of an effect on the plot. Although looking back, they didn’t take away that much from the film, and this is one of those films I saw that I thought about almost every single day after I saw it. Roger Deakins’s cinematography was breathtaking, the visuals were spectacular, the screenplay was brilliant, and it probably contained my favorite line of the year, specifically when Deckard says “Her eyes were green.” The score of the film is legendary! I cannot begin to tell you how many times I listened to the soundtrack after watching this film! I did it during spare time, I did it during homework, I did it in the car, I did it wherever I could! Major credit to Hans Zimmer and Benjamin Wallfisch on creating this epic soundtrack that for some reason wasn’t nominated for a Golden Globe! I guess we’ll have to wait and see what the Academy says before the Oscars. I went to see this in IMAX laser and while I will say “Dunkirk” was a better and more immersive experience, this was a close second in terms of movie-going experiences this year. I’m not even finished with this yet, Harrison Ford gave a performance of a lifetime! The transition from 2019 Deckard to 2049 Deckard was perfect! Ryan Gosling was just as great as the character of K! I also love how it doesn’t try to set up a future universe or sequel, even though a sequel to this film would be nice. As much as I admire some movies that do that, we’re getting that way too much of that and it’s kind of getting less exciting the more we see it. This is a film that stands on its own, EARNS its near 3 hour runtime, and is something I’m deeply saddened that more people didn’t go see.

Also, before we go on, I’d like to say once again, I have an enormous admiration for this movie’s soundtrack. Since I might be a know-it-all, I will state that there is a song that’s on the “Blade Runner 2049” album which isn’t in the movie. It’s called “Almost Human,” it’s written by a Christian singer known as Lauren Diagle, and it’s a ride from start to finish. Lauren’s song is the last song on the album, and I think it really fits with the film. As far as it not being in the film, that’s not a major complaint to me because I don’t know how well it would fit in any of the film’s scenes. I’m not saying that because it has lyrics and the movie heavily relies on mostly grand techno music that is supposed to give a sense of scope. After all, this movie has songs from Elvis Presley and Frank Sinatra. I have a YouTube video up above that will allow you to listen to the song. If you have seen the film, but haven’t gotten a chance to listen to this song, give it a listen and tell me what you think, because this is how we roll on Scene Before. Even if you didn’t see the movie, you can still listen to this song and tell me your thoughts.

#1: Colossal

mv5bmty2ntexota2mf5bml5banbnxkftztgwntmwmje2mti-_v1_sy1000_cr006871000_al_

That’s right folks! We have arrived at #1! We’re about to conclude what I consider to be one of the most important countdowns of the year! We are at the top of Mount Everest! We are at a cliffhanger! What’s my best movie of the year? “Logan’s” not on my list, so it can’t be that! Let me give you a hint. As mentioned, we’re at the top of the Mount Everest, and I assure you that Mount Everest itself is… “Colossal!” There are a number of movies where I literally went out feeling moved, and this my friends, is one of them. “Colossal” is not just one of my favorite movies of the year, it is one of my favorite movies PERIOD. I went in thinking this was going to be great. But I didn’t think it was great. I thought it was F*CKING GREAT! In fact, instead of going to see this movie, I actually wanted to go see “Kong: Skull Island,” but due to time constraints, I couldn’t. You know what? I think I made the right choice. This is one of the most original films I’ve ever seen. Sure, you’ve seen monster movies. Sure, you’ve seen drama movies. Sure, you’ve seen comedy movies. Sure, you’ve seen superhero movies. “Colossal” combines elements of all these genres to create one thrilling experience. The story of the film, is awesome! A party girl who likes to drink has connections with a monster in Seoul, South Korea. How f*cking rad is that?! Not only that, but there’s this whole thing underneath about alcoholism that’s handled very well. I felt somewhat bad for the characters who would constantly drink in this film. There’s a lot I want to talk about related to this film, but in order to do that, I need to spoil the hell out of it and I don’t want to do that. So I’ll just say, just about every scene involving the sandbox, made the movie worth a watch. Speaking of which, the climax contained two of my favorite scenes of the year, and those two add to be a couple of my favorites in cinematic history. Those scenes dropped my jaw and haunted me instantly. It took this film as it is and almost gave it a war film vibe, and then said vibe changed into something that would probably come from someone as insane as Orson Welles. In the year of 2017, I’m glad films like this are being made. Films that are original and moving. We need more of these films. I adore these films. And films like these can quite possibly make my #1 spot on my top movies of the year list.

Well folks! This list is over! We now have my top films of the year! I enjoy making countdowns like these, because unlike other countdowns where I have to do research sometimes, this is mainly just reflection. Pure reflection. Plus, this is on a topic I think about all year long. I build it all up for months and months in advance, we’re getting closer to the end, I can’t wait to talk about it, and it finally arrives. It’s kind of like sex, only longer. Although one thing’s missing, because I’m also a Negative Nancy. Since this year had some pain and suffering in it, not just in terms of the US and how its being run as a country, but also in terms of movies, I’m going to counting down my top 10 WORST movies of 2017. That list will be up very soon, I promise you. Thanks for reading this post and stay tuned for more great content! One such piece includes my top 10 WORST movies of 2017, as recently mentioned. I want to know, what are YOUR best movies of 2017? You can list one, you can do a top 5, top 10, top 15, top 20, whatever you want to do. I just want to know! This is where it all gets fun because I get to hear from you and I would be interested to see if our lists differ in any way. Do you think I missed a movie on this list? Do you agree or disagree with me? Leave a comment below! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

Downsizing (2017): More Like Upboring

mv5bndyxndq5otyxov5bml5banbnxkftztgwotcyodkxndm-_v1_sy1000_cr006401000_al_

“Downsizing” is directed by Alexander Payne (Sideways, The Descendants) and stars Matt Damon (The Martian, The Bourne Identity), Christoph Waltz (Django Unchained, Inglorious Bastards), Hong Chau (Inherent Vice, Treme), and Kristen Wiig (Bridesmaids, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty). This movie is about a guy who shrinks down after the realization that this action would change his life for the better.

I went to see this film with my mother, and both of us knew very little about it. I knew basically what I just described up above. Matt Damon plays a guy who at one point gets shrunken down. I found out a lot of things about this movie as it went on. For example, I found out the movie’s garbage. I also found out the people who are shrunken down go on and live in a tiny land. Another thing I also found out is that the shrinking was an idea to save the environment and the Earth from overpopulation. What’s another thing I found out? Oh yeah, and I found out the movie’s garbage! Allow me to explain the unbelievable boredom that you’ll experience watching “Downsizing.”

Have you ever watched C-SPAN and thought to yourself, what if something like this was full of fictional characters? No, this movie isn’t full of political discussions, but try watching C-SPAN for a number of minutes and try not to change to channel. Speaking of boring, have you ever read a terms of service agreement from beginning to end? This movie has one, it’s short, but if it were longer, that’s basically what this movie is. It’s a long terms of service agreement. Something you don’t want to look at, and in some cases, makes you wonder why you intended on signing up, or in this case, bought tickets, for what you’re experiencing. F*ck this movie!

This movie stars Matt Damon as the character of Paul Safranak. He and his wife decide at one point to shrink themselves down because if they do that, their lives will be better. They can live as large as a king, and work as little as Kim Kardashian. By the way, f*ck Kim Kardashian. Matt Damon gave a rather competent performance as his character. In fact, seeing Damon perform was one of the more redeemable parts of the entire film. There’s something about Matt Damon that makes you appreciate him. I thought his performance here was better than another stinker which came out this year, specifically “The Great Wall,” but it wasn’t enough to make a good movie.

I’m not even gonna get into the other characters. Because I don’t even care about them enough to talk about them! I almost fell asleep while watching this film, which I will say I’ve never done once during a movie while I watched it in the theater. Let me just say that Matt Damon’s wife is played by Kristen Wiig, there’s an Asian chick who doesn’t understand English that well played by Hong Chau, and there’s LITERALLY NOBODY ELSE that I feel should be talked about here in detail because I’d probably have to watch the film again in order to get information on them.

There are so many things that are wrong with this film. Aside from being a total borefest, there are tons of questions that sparked in my mind as I dredged through this atrocity. For instance, why the f*ck am I watching this? But also, how the f*ck is some of this s*it happening? While the film is logical in ways, it doesn’t have any noticeable physics errors for example, there are many questionable things that just come together to create one gigantic mess. As everyone gets downsized, literally all of their hair is shaved. Why?! Another thing that I questioned during the film is how all of these small people got a lot of their items. I mean, the movie never goes into it, but a lot of it is explainable. I’ve got a couple valid reasons in my mind. A big thing I wonder is how these folks get their money. Is money downsized? Are wallets downsized? Also, when everyone gets downsized, they’re naked. Therefore, they don’t have their credit card on them. Another huge question, does the government approve of financial downsizing? I don’t know when this takes place, but it has to either take place in the future or present day. By that logic, I imagine people would still be addicted to their phones. When one person shrinks himself or herself down, it’s a total life changer. Would phones suffer from downsizing? Yes, the downsized world would contain factories producing products like phones and everything along those lines. But why can’t you downsize products? This really makes me concerned about that money thing I just mentioned. I remember Matt Damon using a phone when shrunken down, but I can’t remember if it was one he had before the shrinking process. Also, since downsizing’s a life changer, I gotta say, that s*it doesn’t make any sense. Yes, you’re changing the way you live, not to mention where you live. Ultimately, you’re still the same person. The movie makes it sound like you’re never going to talk to the people you know again. Not only does Matt Damon talk to someone he knows who doesn’t shrink, but in general, how do you talk to people you can’t communicate with easily? Do it on the phone! You can still talk to your family on the phone! Also, once a person gets downsized, this process can’t be reversed. So they couldn’t make a separate machine for upsizing? Or make upsizing an option on the machine? At least say that there’s no way to do that! This movie is nothing but garbage!

I don’t have much else to say, but there’s this awesome pun given during the movie. Matt Damon is on the phone talking to one person in particular, which, yeah, more phone s*it. He says something to get the person to say “Don’t get short with me.” As terrible as this movie is, hearing that line might be worth the price of admission.

In the end, “Downsizing” sounds like an interesting movie on paper. A guy shrinking himself down to live a better life isn’t that bad of a concept, but this film not only bored me, but managed to make me question it more than I intended to. So for that, I wanted only one thing to shrink at this point, which was my anger. Unfortunately, it only grew as the movie progressed. F*ck this movie! I’m going to give “Downsizing” a 2/10. Thanks for reading this review, pretty soon I’m going to have my lists for my top 10 BEST movies of 2017 and my top 10 WORST movies of 2017. I’ve been working on those for quite a bit, and I can guarantee you that as of now, this movie made the worst list for sure! Stay tuned for more reviews, those countdowns, and more great content! I want to know, did you see “Downsizing?” What did you think about it? Or, what are some of the most boring movies you’ve ever seen? Let me know down below! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!