Transformers: Dark of the Moon

Happy Thursday everyone!  A little late, but better than never, I’ve finally seen Transformers 3 (in 3D no less!!).  While in Philadelphia I was able to meet up with Mr. Batduck and geek out a little by going to watch a movie that we both know Mrs. Batty would not have had any interest in so we ended up at the theater of the King of Prussia Mall with our Real D 3D glasses on.

I have enjoyed the franchise up to this point, but was really not too thrilled with the second movie.  The plot and action seemed thrown in to make a loud noise as opposed to advancing the story, but they do appear to have rectified this in the 3rd installment- to a point.  The comedic moments were very funny, the new chick (who looked a lot like the other girl to me) did a great job and her character added some dimension to Sam’s story-line in my humble opinion, and the action made more sense because they were fighting off an invasion.  I’m not sure why that made a difference for me, but it did.

All in all- I’ll give this a 4 out of 5 for sheer entertainment value.  Good job Mr. Bay!

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Movie Review: Atlas Shrugged Part 1

Friday the 15th of April has finally come!!!  I woke up, got some breakfast/lunch and made my way tot the one theater in the area that was playing the film.  I give this an overall rating of 7 out of 10.  Call me biased, but I’ve always been a big fan of Ayn Rand and Atlas Shrugged.  The fact that they’ve FINALLY made a movie out of the book is just incredible.  That being said, it was never going to be a blockbuster movie.  The story and content are way too philosophical to be the Godfather, but the screenwriters should be commended.  The action of the film was steady, though not fast paced, but they managed to take nearly 400 pages of pretty dense material and create a good story with character development, plot movement, and mystery.

The problems that I have always seen with attempting to adapt Atlas Shrugged into a movie are pretty simple.  The characters have a lot of inner dialogue that advances the story and much of the plot points are given to you via newspapers, subtle conversations and small interactions between minor characters.  One way that the screen writers addressed this, in my eyes, was a very important updating of the world to a near future date.  One reviewer described this as a dystopian future and taking from the atmosphere the blatant references to Ayn Rands communist experience in the USSR was a master touch and highly necessary.  It was actually a little disconcerting to watch because the world of the film was 99% our current reality.  The dialogue, as it is in the book, is overly philosophical, but that is the nature of Atlas Shrugged.  It is a story about a philosophy.

The one thing that I was a little disappointed about was the portrayal of Dagny.  Taylor Schilling did a phenomenal job of portraying one of my heroes of literature, but the one part of the character that I didn’t feel was her sexuality.  Dagny’s affair with Reardon left me a little cool.  The progression was meh and the culmination of the affair was expected- overall, not a hot scene and I pictured fireworks in the sexual tension when I read the book.  I did, however, love the way that Ellis Wyatt was portrayed, he was dynamic and interesting and larger than life in a way that the book didn’t convey.

Either way- I am going to be waiting for part 2 with bated breath.  Not only did I enjoy the movie, but I am more sure now than I was yesterday that this is a relevant story in the current world.

Movie Review: Black Sheep

Black Sheep: Get the Flock Out of Here!

Black Sheep: Get the Flock Out of Here!

Here is the synopsis from the Rottentomatoes.com:  This blood-soaked horror comedy is the story of Henry Oldfield (Nathan Meister), a New Zealander with an unfortunate phobia…of sheep. When Henry was a boy, his father was killed in a herding…This blood-soaked horror comedy is the story of Henry Oldfield (Nathan Meister), a New Zealander with an unfortunate phobia…of sheep. When Henry was a boy, his father was killed in a herding accident on the land, and Henry fled to the big city. Now, years later, he has returned to sell his half of the farm and–at the behest of his therapist–to face his fears. Meanwhile, Henry’s sadistic older brother Angus (Peter Feeney) has taken over the family business, and become widely known for his controversial genetic experiments on the animals. When two animal activists release one of Angus’s genetically-altered lambs, Henry’s trip quickly turns into his worst nightmare, as the lamb’s zombie-like bite turns sheep and people into vicious flesh-eaters. Henry joins forces with one of the animal activists (Danielle Mason), and together they try to escape the sheep and find an antidote for the virus. Director Jonathon King cleverly plays on the silliness of the normally docile, dimwitted lamb as terrifying monster, and his shots of the sheep swarming over the hills induce equal parts thrills and laughter. However, the storyline could perhaps have benefited from a bit less action, and a bit more plot, as the suspense and jokes begin to fizzle by the end. The excellent WETA WORKSHOP (known for its work on the LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy) delivers hilariously gory special effects. Faces are eaten off, humans throw their own limbs, and heads explode, culminating in a raucous bloodbath that will likely earn BLACK SHEEP cult status among the EVIL DEAD crowd.
Now- needless to say, Zombie Sheep and Environmentalists = AWESOME!  This movie is truly campy and I would honestly liken it to Evil Dead, but that being said- I Flipping LOVE Evil Dead!  The cinematography is actually quite fantastic and being shot in New Zealand only means that the set is gorgeous.  The acting is surprisingly good.  I can only imagine that these actors were trying to make the best of a seriously cheesy script.The humor wasn’t as bad as you’d expect and yes the gore was pretty fake, but damned if the evil sheep fetus infecting everyone isn’t the cutest little animatron!All in All- I give this movie 3.5 out of 4 stars because it was wildly entertaining and it proved the motto, where men are men, and sheep are scared!