Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)

Tom Holland is the best Spider-Man so far! He tops Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield in my opinion.

Tom Holland is who makes this film brilliant. His quirky, awkward teenager presence as Peter Parker is welcomed on screen. ‘Spider-Man: Far From Home’ finds Peter Parker desperate to keep a normal life. We watch as Spider-Man tries to cling onto his summer vacation with his friends at school. Travelling around Europe, Peter sets himself a plan to tell MJ (Zendaya) how he really feels – aww. But when Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) makes an entrance by shooting Peter’s friend with a dart gun, Peter’s summer holiday becomes a save-the-world expedition once again.

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‘Spider-Man: Far From Home’ has the same awkward funny moments as ‘Homecoming’ did. The plot is also a brilliant one, interesting and intriguing. Leading on from the catastrophe of ‘Avengers: Endgame’, the world is feeling the loss of beloved Avengers, where others have given up the game and many have died. Spider-Man still lives, although weight is off his shoulders when another different superhero comes on the screen – Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal). Elementals have taken over the world, destroying famous cities; fire, wind and water explode through Venice, London, Prague.

I did have a few reservations about this film. For starters, I wasn’t sure about Jake Gyllenhaal as Mysterio as it did seem like a weird choice. Furthermore, Marvel has had so many numerous films, can it continue to get better or it is just the same story over and over again? Especially after the mass hit of ‘Endgame’. However, I did not need to worry. Jake Gyllenhaal was a good addition to this Marvel film. His and Tom Holland’s bond on and off screen has to be loved by the audience. Plus, the plot was refreshingly different and interesting throughout.

SPIDER-MAN: ™ FAR FROM HOME

‘Spider-Man: Far From Home’ was an enjoyable film. It has the action and the comedy. Tom Holland and Zendaya are fabulous and brilliant characters on screen. As is Peter Parker’s best friend, Ned (Jacob Batalon). Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan is ever more so present in this film and should be loved, his character is brilliant. Elements throughout the film get darker and twisted as the plot unravels and unravels. For some reason, I knew all the twists in this film, so if you know them, they don’t become such the great twists and turns throughout. Although, still worth the watch as it is a great film with brilliant Spider-Man skills developing further and Peter Parker’s presence as a teenager is also perfect.

PS. Don’t forget the two scenes at the end of the credits – they’re gooduns.

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Captain Marvel (2019)

Let’s bring it all the way back to the beginning. To the beginning of earth’s understanding of out of space threats. To the creation of Marvel. It is the start of all stories.

I didn’t have my hopes up with this film, it’s just another film I was going to see. And to begin with, I wasn’t completely sold. But soon enough, I was absorbed into the film. I loved the music, who doesn’t love a bit of No Doubt and TLC? Then of course the special graphic effects were amazing, when are they not nowadays? ‘Captain Marvel’ was so fast pace, it was a great escapism to get lost into.

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Vers (Brie Larson) has completely forgotten her identity after a crash made her lose her memories. Living on the planet, Kree, she finally has the opportunity to use her powers that were given to her to fight for her country. In her first mission, an ambush is set waiting for her. Landing on earth, she finds her emotions always get in the way of her mind as she tries to track down the enemy’s target. But that’s not the only thing she discovers, but instead everything she’s forgotten. You become warped into an enemy that can shapeshift. You have no idea where they are as they could look like anyone. It’s fun and simple.

I really liked her story. I wouldn’t say it was the most shocking, because I could kind of tell where the whole movie was heading. But regardless, that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy watching it unfold. I did love all the originality of the beginning of Marvel. Definitely enjoyed all the connections to unasked questions in all the other films. We see the return of Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) – which I have to say, they did well to look younger – his story of how he first found out about space troubles. Plus, there’s a cat, and it’s amazingly hilarious. Other than the cat, I can’t say the comedy was hit there as usual in Marvel films, unfortunately.

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Was this the best Marvel film I’ve ever seen? Probably not. But I still enjoyed the story very much, particularly loved Vers back story and lost past. And I adored the connections to other films, the realisation of questions you didn’t even ask in previous Marvel films. I even enjoyed the plane fights and Vers growing into her powers. It’s an enjoyable escapism and a brilliant original story. You know you’ll have to watch all Marvel films before ‘Avengers: Endgame’ anyway!

The Hitman’s Bodyguard (2017)

The story of this action comedy (but mostly action), is one I didn’t expect. The trailer doesn’t really express the plot, and it was very different than I thought. The plot is: when Belarus’ dictator (played by Gary Oldman, by the way) is finally arrested for his violence and ruling, the opposing side find it difficult to pin evidence against this murderous man. The only key witness they have is Darius Kincaid, a contract killer, played by Samuel L. Jackson. The plot is for Kincaid to get to The Hague’s Court from Manchester Prison at Interpol. But it’s not that easy when the dictator’s men are trying to kill him so he can’t testify, and Interpol has an unknown leak (unknown to the characters, the audience is aware of who it is quite quickly). Therefore, he cannot trust anyone. This leads to the once Triple A Awarded Bodyguard to step onto the scene and protect this contract killer, much to his distain. This bodyguard is Michael Bryce, is played by the amazing Ryan Reynolds. Determined to gain his high-value status once again, Bryce follows his precise rules of efficiency and safety. Although, this turns not so easy when Kincaid doesn’t want to be helped and he just rolls with the punches as things happen.

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Sadly, I feel a bit deflated after watching this film, I expected so much more from it and instead it was a bit weak in places and surprisingly special effects were obvious, particularly some green screened effects. I’m not sure if these bad green screens where supposed to be a comedy element, if it was, I just didn’t get it. To me, it just reminded me I was watching a film, distracting me and ruining the escapism element any film is supposed to have. Because isn’t that why we watch films?

‘The Hitman’s Bodyguard’ was a lot more revolved around love than I thought it was going to be. This meant it was very talky, talky at times. Sometimes, a bit over the top with the talking, there’s one scene that lasted way too long. Plus the whole conversations were all the same thing, LOVE. Plus, there wasn’t much a build up of what’s going to happen, even though they really tried to push this as hard as they could. But the ending was clever, and alternate plans you didn’t expect did add shock and surprise to the film, because that was something I didn’t see coming. There is a definite overuse on swearing that was a bit unnecessary in every sentence, but to be fair, I think that was the point for Jackson’s character.

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Ok, so this sounds like a really bad review and it wasn’t as bad as I’m saying. There were some moments of comedy, particularly Bryce’s flying through a windscreen, that bit did crack me up. There were also some fun action scenes, some impressive ones. A lot of the action scenes were accompanied with contradicting music, which at some points worked and at others, clashed a bit too much. Otherwise, a lot of the music was very James Bond. Salma Hayek also appears in the film as Kincaid’s wife, although her story was confusing and I didn’t really understand why she was in prison if she was innocent, or what have you. She was a very angry character… She was mainly there as prop for reasoning of Kincaid’s capture and his dedication to her. The film has a lot of flashback scenes, that delved into the characters’ love lives, of course.

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Finally, this wasn’t the worst film I’ve ever seen, far from it! I just had a few issues with it, as you can tell. It is an enjoyable film, there are moments of action and comedy and that’s all you need in an action comedy, right? The actors are obviously great, with the likes of Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson, you wouldn’t expect any different. I guess I was just expecting a bit more POW and cooler action scenes. But I do have to admit, I enjoyed the motorcycle scene and definitely when Bryce was protecting Kincaid quietly in the streets of Amsterdam. Overall, I didn’t hate watching it, but would I watch it again? I’m not so sure. It might become one a bit lost in the mass of action comedies to be honest.

Barely Lethal (2015)

Another high school cheesy film, because why not? Hailee Steinfeld from ‘Pitch Perfect 2’ and ‘3’, Sophie Turner from ‘Game of Thrones’. Most importantly, Samuel L. Jackson and Jessica Alba. But there’s a spin on this high school comedy, because chuck in a bit of action and you get the story of the young orphaned girl turned killing machine, but oh she doesn’t want to be this assassin, she had no choice in this life, she wants the ‘normal’ life, the life of high school.

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So, Prescott School for orphaned girls, a school teaching young girls to be assassins. Which means, no attachments, no friends, no family. But this separation never sat right with the one student who carries our plot, Hailee Steinfeld’s character, Agent 83, or otherwise known as, when she renames herself, Megan from Canada. I say this because when she gets an opportunity to leave the school, she fakes herself as a foreign exchange student from Canada and applies into the Larson family to live in Newton, USA. In which, this kicks off what she calls, “Mission High School”. The Larson family? Divorced mother of two (Rachael Harris), daughter, Liz (Dove Cameron) and son, Parker (Jason Drucker). To be honest, I really did like this family, and they seemed a great family to move into. Liz, in particular, is a great character, she envies the fact that her mother has taken in a new daughter, however she becomes a character to really like.

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The problem this film had, other than the blatant cheesiness and predictability level… But what else would you expect? Anyway… The problem was the narration had so much potential, there were elements that could have gone so much further, but they didn’t. It remained in the predictable light of a high school, throw in assassin, film. The enemy of the film wasn’t actually explained at all, it was someone called Victoria Knox, played by the brilliant Jessica Alba, but why was she even the villain? I don’t know! She could have brought so much potential to the film. Her character could have been so complex and her reveal they thought would be a twist in the film was expected and obvious. It could have gone so much further to bring her hatred of Prescott to reason, maybe even brought a better plot line that Prescott wasn’t the school it was. Regardless, it remained a teen movie, when it could have been so much more. Additionally, they really could have made Hailee Steinfeld’s character more badass, I mean seriously, she was a trained assassin, and there are hardly any moments this was even shown, plus she was supposed to be best in her class, but still, there wasn’t many great, fun action scenes.

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Overall, ‘Barely Lethal’ had a lot of potential, I really wanted to like it. But to be honest, it just wasn’t that great. I mean it wasn’t awful, far from the worst film I’ve ever seen. When it comes down to it, however, I won’t be watching it again and I probably wouldn’t recommend it. Which is really a shame, I just so wanted this plot to be a fab teen action comedy. But truth be told, I didn’t do much laughing, instead it was actually awkward in places and quite cringey. And like I’ve already said there wasn’t much action, the action there was was a bit pathetic, and some of it, odd. So there you go, ‘Barely Lethal’ doesn’t jump to one of the best teen films. Potential was definitely there though.

The Incredibles (2004)

‘The Incredibles’ is a brilliant classic animation that should be in everyone’s childhood. Well that’s my opinion anyway, and it’s my review so I would encourage anyone who hasn’t seen this film to watch right away.

“Every superhero has a secret identity”. This is something we become to know extremely well in this film, it is the basis of ‘The Incredibles’. When the world no longer wants superheroes, they are forced to live among everyone else. I love how this is done at the beginning of the film, through newspaper clippings, sketches in court – it will become clear if you watch it… The beginning throwing you straight into that action element of the film, and delving into the love of Mr Incredible being a superhero. Then it jumps 15 years ahead and begins the main story line, the Parr family trying to live a normal suburban life.

THE INCREDIBLES

Introducing the characters then. As I’ve already mentioned the film is based around the Parr family. The man of the family, a man of incredible strength, Mr Incredible or Bob Parr (Craig T. Nelson). Next, the wife, a woman of extreme flexibility, Elastigirl/Helen (Holly Hunter). And their three children. Invisibility and force fields are the powers of the eldest child, Violet (Sarah Vowell). The middle child, Dash (Spencer Fox), is like his name says, very speedy to say the least. Then finally, the youngest Jack-Jack, who’s “not even toilet trained”. And of course, there has to be a villain! This is Syndrome (Jason Lee). Syndrome, a non-super wanna-be superhero, if that makes any sense… The film is built up and built up to the ultimate plan of Syndrome’s, which finally hits at the end in a burst of more action and the urge of the Incredible family to save the world.

This film has a mixture of romance, comedy, adventure and a lot of action. Then throw in some enjoyable and brilliant animation. What more could you want? As Bob reminisces the old glory days of using his powers and saving people, it leads to him lying to his family. This eventually leads to a family adventure, one involving a lot of action. As Helen angrily goes to save Bob, their two eldest children become tied up into the action, which forces them to finally come to grips with their superpowers. Dash, a child in love with his powers but unable to show who he is, finally is able to run and run fast; his scene of running on the island is such an enjoyable part of the film for the audience, with edging close calls as he is chased by those who want him killed, the audience is wrapped up in Dash’s love for running and him discovering his new limits to his powers. The romance between husband and wife, Bob and Helen – despite the lying – is cute in its own way too.

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I have to mention, watching this film as an older audience – not saying I didn’t enjoy it, quite the opposite, this is a brilliant film. But the film is very clever in how it covers other issues in life, especially family issues. A young girl struggling with her confidence. A young boy unable to express himself, just wanting to compete. A man who just wants to be accepted in society again and appreciated for saving people which he loves to do. And finally, a woman trapped in lies told by her husband. I love how all this could potentially delve into realities of the audience even if it is a film about superheroes. This makes it a family film for everyone to enjoy.

‘The Incredibles’ ends on a cliff-hanger, begging for a second film. Which I believe is a want for many people, including me. So I thought what is best is to do a film review on this classic animation that should be remembered and appreciated by everyone. Just in case those who haven’t watched it can, seeing as it is such a great film, and be ready for ‘Incredibles 2’. Yes, in preparation for the next Incredibles movie, said to be released in 2018. 14 years after this classic first one. I will definitely be racing to see this next one. Just hope it is up to standards of this brilliant one. So go and watch the adventures of the Parr family because you won’t be disappointed in this animation.