Part Of The Journey Is The End

There was an idea…called The Avengers Initiative. The idea was to bring together a group of remarkable people, see if they could become something more. See if they could work together when we needed them to fight the battles we never could. – Nick Fury The Avengers

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The MCU is in incredible piece of pop art. Unlike anything that came before it, and unlikely to ever be duplicated. (Many have tried and failed.) The brainchild of a genius producer, ushered in by some talented directors and held together for good or ill, by the charisma of that group of remarkable people.

Avengers: Endgame is the payoff. When Avengers: Infinity war ended, with Thanos “watching the sun rise over a grateful universe.” (Universe is actually less than grateful but he’s nuts.) breath was held and we waited. How would our team, our guys, all of whom were left behind after this rapture, handle this?

They fight, of course. They save the world. That’s what they do. And then they rest. As a critic, it’s hard to come at a movie that has this much to  get done, gets it done (mostly) and also manages to be a hell of a lot of fun, a showcase for the three men and one woman who were basically holding this whole endeavor on their good looking charismatic backs. (And a few other people who were backing them up.)

Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, Chris Evans and Chris Hemsworth, are incredible performers who have given Tony Stark, Natasha Romanoff, Steve Rogers and Thor Odinson life and joy and heart, and here they get to pay off ten or so years of work. They are all excellent. (Especially Johansson, Nat’s had a journey y’all.)

Endgame is good. It’s very good. As close to perfect as it could be, from a critical standpoint. And from a fan standpoint, it is perfect.

Rankings:

  1. Avengers: Endgame

Trailers

Aladdin:
Kristi: It’s that soon?
Me: Meh, at least there’s no white people in it.
Aless: That is literally the only thing it has going for it though.

The Long Shot:
I will see it. I’m here for President Charlize.

Gemini Man:
Guys, Will Smith is back. I think we should all be happy about that.

Hobbs & Shaw:
Hot damn, I cannot wait for this. The only thing that upsets me is that it appears Shaw will not be brought to justice for Han’s death. Which is kind of a bummer. But the new trailer does have both Statham and Johnson saying “family” like sixteen times. So you know F&F….

Toy Story 4:
It really does look breathtaking doesn’t it? Even if it feels a little like the plot is a retread of 2. 

And from here on out, beyond that cut, we’re into spoiler land. I AM WARNING YOU.

I’M TOTALLY SERIOUS. SPOILERS HEREEEEEE

Continue reading

Ready For Endgame: Ant-Man And The Wasp & Captain Marvel

When I think about these movies, it’s in the shadow of The Snap, and how they even more than the others, reinforces that one of the strength of the MCU is that the journey counts as much as anything. We all knew that Ant-Man And The Wasp and Captain Marvel were hurtling towards the inevitable destruction of half the population.

But they handle it very differently. First of all, as I talked about both when I reviewed Ant-Man a few years ago, and when I talked about Ant-Man And The Wasp last year, I find these movies completely and utterly charming. I smile the whole way through all of them. Paul Rudd is wonderful. Evangeline Lilly is wonderful. Michael Douglas is wonderful. The whole supporting cast is wonderful.

Scott’s main motivation is his love for his daughter, which binds him with Janet Van Dyne, who just wants to get back to Hope. Oh, and she’s Michelle Pfeiffer, which is awesome. Seriously, you guys, I love this movie a lot, and I’m very worried about how Scott is going to feel after he returns from the Quantum realm and finds that his new family is gone. (Also, I hope Cassie is OK, I get the feeling it will be his ex wife, Judy Greer, who got snapped in that scenario.)

And then we have to talk abut Captain Marvel, which Aless and I went to go see again last weekend, so that one, we could see it again, and two, I could write about it intelligently. I love this movie. I love Carol Danvers, I love that she’s so powerful, that she doesn’t let people define her, that’s her arc. She’s in charge, she’s going to do what she wants, and it’s wonderful.

Like Ant-Man hinging on Paul Rudd, so much here is because of Brie Larson’s low key and charming performance. She’s smirking, quipping and pushing the boundaries at every moment, but it always feels like she’s a fully formed person, even when she’s Vers, and she isn’t.

Both movies end on a triumph for their heroes and then in the post credits brings us post snap, Scott in the quantum realm with Hope, Janet and Hank dusted, and Carol responding to Fury’s page,ready to join the Avengers.

One thing that’s great about a few key movies in The MCU is that they make for an inescapable status quo for the others. Because Ant-Man And The Wasp and Captain Marvel came out in between Infinity War and Endgame the snap had to be dealt with, it couldn’t be ignored. But the movies manage to stand on their own, even without that hook. We knew that they’d answer the questions of “Where were those guys when Thanos hit?” but we also knew that wasn’t going to be the point.

OK, that’s it. We rewatched the whole deal. Isn’t that crazy? It’s crazy.

Next time we touch base with The MCU, it’s going to be for Endgame, and the beginning of movie season. Taking this Monday, sometimes Tuesday when I’m busy/tired, will be the final seven (eight maybe) Game Of Thrones winners. And after that…well..we’ll talk after that.

Movie Season 2018 Wrap Up

Movie season was quiet this year. I missed a lot of stuff. I considered extending a week to catch up, but frankly, it’s just not in the cards.

I am going to be going to the movies a lot more though, I think, in the coming months, and I’ll be doing a fair share of reviewing, just not ranking of those films. I considered ending Movie Season all together after this year, and may still cap it at 2019, since my focus in consumption has changed quite a bit, but frankly the year of Avengers: Endgame and Star Wars: Episode IX makes for a more compelling finale to this feature than “the year I was too tired/broke to hit the multiplex much.”

So we push on in 2019. But for now, let’s talk about 2018, and the bajillion Superhero movies that I reviewed. (With a few others in between)

Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse

It’s been a week and I’m still blown away by it. And it won the Golden Globe for best animated film! Hooray! But seriously, this is a great movie, that deserves every single plaudit that it’s getting. As a coming out party for Miles it was more than amazing, and just as a movie on it’s own.

Aquaman

I’ve been giggling a lot just thinking about this movie. I was feeling a little bit burnt out on superheroes before this and Spider-Verse, if I’m feeling honest. In the week since, I’ve rewatched Young Justice, (and started the new season) read Crisis On Infinite Earths, watched Titans and started Runaways. Seriously, these two very fun superhero movies have got my interest peaked again and I’m thrilled about it.

The Incredibles 2

It feels like I saw this a really long time ago, but I loved it so much in the moment. Again, with the superhero burnout, I haven’t wanted to watch it a second time, but maybe I will.

Bohemian Rhapsody

SO MANY TISSUES. Also, congrats to Rami Malek! He was very very good in this movie

A Star Is Born

I’m psyched for Gaga, really. And I love these songs, I really love them. I think there’s something powerful in retelling stories, and clearly this is one that people really like.

Solo: A Star Wars Story

Again with the giggling. I seriously enjoyed this, and I can’t wait until it hits Netflix and I can watch it again. I actually have seen it a second time (thanks Redbox!)

Creed 2

I’ve declared Dolph Lundgren this movie season’s MVP.  He was great here and super fun in Aquaman, and it’s pretty great.

Mary Poppins Returns

I admire this movie more than I actually like it. I think it pulled off it’s balancing act really well. Has some strong performances, and good songs. It just didn’t stick to my ribs the way I was hoping that it would.

Deadpool 2

I am among the few who preferred this to the original I think? I thought the story was stronger, even if it wasn’t as funny. Either way, I do not fear for us getting more Deadpool. If anyone can survive the current climate of things at Marvel, it’s the guy who was never going to get a movie in the first place.

Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again!

This movie is so wonderful, and I can’t wait to watch it when summer comes, and there’s rose flowing and my friends and I are dancing around a room.

Ocean’s 8

I kind of forgot I saw this. But I remember really liking it.

Infinity War

This is very far down the list. I watched it again last week. It’s quite good.

Ant-Man And The Wasp

Dude, another one that I kind of completely forgot, but again, when I think about it, I liked a lot, but gets knocked down for sheer, ya know, forgetability.

Venom

Wow, this was a bad but fun movie. Seriously, so fun, though.

So that was Movie Season 2018. 2019 begins the last weekend in April, with Endgame. I’m rewatching the MCU in preparation now, and I’ll spend the summer and fall on Star Wars as well as whatever else is going on, movie land wise..(Including Clone Wars, Rebels and Resistance.) 

 

He’s In A Rough Place, Emotionally

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I finally saw Ant-Man And The Wasp last night! Hooray! (I’ve also decided to sign up for Sutbs A-List, so that I can get through the rest of movie season with relative ease. Double hooray!)

I really, really loved Ant-Mana lot, it’s probably the most rewatched MCU movie for me. (At least post Avengers…) due in no small part to Paul Rudd’s lovely performance, it’s heart being about fathers and daughters, and Michael Pena as Luis. (Sadly not as well used here)

Ant-Man And The Wasp is not as good as Ant-Man, but it’s still quite good, and makes use of a Partridge Family song, which is a delight. Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer are delightful in both their kinda creepy de-aged versions (prep for a full movie of this effect in Captain Marvel folks…I wonder how it will sustain?) and as their distinguished perfect selves. (Lawrence Fishburn is also good.)

I didn’t think the villain, Ghost, was as disconnected as I’d heard (She’s pretty well tied in to Pym, his legacy and SHIELD.) (Also, like, I love Howard and Peggy, but DAMN, SHIELD SUCKS you guys.) And Evangeline Lilly does well enough, and Paul Rudd is still great, but this is a lower tier one. (This seems to be happening with the second parts of Marvel trilogies regularly. The Winter Soldier being the exception that proves the rule…)

Worth seeing, as it stands alone in a few ways, and it has a damn charming cast, but not going to move mountains or anything.

POST CREDITS!

First in the mid credits, as everyone gets ready to enter the Quantum Realm for some experimenting, only Scott makes it before Janet, Hank and Hope all get poofed. So…yeah…we’ll see what happens there.

Rankings:

  1. Solo: A Star Wars Story
  2. Deadpool 2
  3. Ocean’s 8
  4. Infinity War
  5. Ant-Man And The Wasp

Trailers

The House With The Clock In The Walls: This looks like a delight, and since I now have A-List, I will likely actually see it. (I discovered if I even only go to one movie a week, not even the 3 allotted, the thing will pay for itself.)

Creed II: I would have gone to see this even if it wasn’t about Adonis avenging his father’s death by fighting Drago Jr. But since it is about that, well, now I’ll go see it seventeen times.

Alpha: This movie looks so dumb, but PUPPIES!!!!

Bumblebee: I hope it’s good, since it’s writer is now making the Batgirl movie, but I’m not super confident…

The Nutcracker And The Four Realms: I’ve talked about how excited I am for this movie before, but the new trailer makes me even more so. Seriously, it looks kind of wonderful.

Dumbo: “Baby Mine” will make me cry no matter what, so there’s that, I guess?

HAPPY MOVIE SEASON 2018!

You guys, tonight Infinity War begins and so begins Movie Season 2018.

I’m totally freaking out. I’m in complete denial that we’re finally at this time of the year and even more so that tonight I’m (probably?) going to have to say goodbye to Chris Evans as Steve Rogers as Captain America. Like seriously, I’m not OK, I’m not going to be OK.

As for the rest of movie seasons, let’s talk. Last year a few factors brought out a more mellow season. This year I’m hoping to remedy that, but I’m not making any promises. I’m gonna try to return to the Movie Season 2015 hey day of a movie every week, thus finding interesting things I maybe wouldn’t have seen otherwise, but I make no promises.

I do know that the below movies are totally happening no matter what:

Avengers: Infinity War – 4/27

Obviously, you guys, I mean, duh, right? Just Duh.

Deadpool 2 – 5/18

Again with the duh, I’m curious about it, I want it to be good. (PLEASE BE GOOD) And I mean, Ryan Reynolds right?

Solo: A Star Wars Story – 5/25

LANDO! That is all. OK, no I have other things to say. This looks really fun. And I like my Star Wars fun, you guys, which is part of why I wasn’t crazy about Rogue One, but this, this could be good.

But also, Donald Glover as Lando. I like being right about things.

Ocean’s 8 – 6/8

Lady Heist! Sandra Bullock! Mindy Kaling! Anne Hathaway! The Met Ball! De-lightful. I’m so so in.

The Incredibles 2 – 6/15

Blah blah blah family. Blah blah Pixar is amazing. Yap Yap Superheroes. *Fart Noise* Baby Jack Jack powers.

I’m kidding, I’m as excited as anyone to check in with The Parrs. I’m psyched for Brad Bird too. I hope this gets him out of movie jail.

Jurrasic World: Fallen Kingdom – 6/22

Ya know, I still haven’t watched Jurrasic World a second time? I loved it in the theater, I just, don’t want to know how dumb it is and hate it. Like at all. This looks, HELLA dumb, but Dr. Ian Malcolm is back, so you know…yay?

Ant-Man & The Wasp – 7/6

Take a deep breath America. We’re finally getting a in the title female hero in the MCU. Also, when I rewatched Ant-Man this weekend, I was reminded of how much I love it, and how excited I am for this movie.

However, if we don’t get a flashback scene of Janet VanDyne-Pym and Peggy Carter fighting bad guys together, I’m going to be a bit put out.

Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again – 7/20

Did the world need a sequel to Mamma Mia? Probably not. Will I put together a boozy brunch and then dine in theater girls day to watch this movie? Probably. Will I cry? Almost definitely. Do I think this movie will be any good? Oh, for sure no.

Christopher Robin – 8/4

I loved Saving Mr. Banks, so I’m all in for big budget Disney-Classic Fanfiction, which is what this appears to be, when an adult Christopher Robin finds his way back to the Hundred Acre Wood.

Crazy Rich Asians – 8/17

WEEEEEEE! Crazy Rich Asians has so far been my favorite book I’ve read this year and this is probably the movie I’m most looking forward to this movie season. Is that weird? Does that mean that I’ve officially succumbed to superhero fatigue?

I dunno, I’m just real real psyched to see this movie, you guys.

Venom – 10/5

I am wary of a Venom movie with no connection to Spider-Man, but the trailers look cool, and I like Tom Hardy, so ya know, we’ll see. I would love to see Tom Holland pop up though.

A Star Is Born – 10/5

I’m still not like 100% sold on Bradley Cooper as casting for this, though I never needed convincing on Lady Gaga taking on a role once occupied by Judy Garland and Barbara Streisand. That’s kind of perfect. (However, I will always mourn for the version starring Beyonce that never was…)

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald – 11/16

Oh, like we’re not all going to go see this movie. Come on. Jude Law as Young Dumbledore? Please, yeah, we need this.

Wreck-It Ralph 2: Ralph Breaks The Internet – 11/21

Looks way cute. I love the first Wreck-It Ralph so I hope this delivers with as much heart as that one did, which was the best/most unexpected part of the thing.

Second Act – 11/21

I’m not sure I actually want to see this this badly, but I do love J-Lo, and my friend Deidre Friel has a supporting role, so I want to see her on the big screen. (ALSO, like Way to Go Deidre! Being in a Jennifer Lopez movie and all!)

Aquaman – 12/21

I mean, whatever, with the DCEU anymore. I’ll go, I’m sure it’ll be fun. The last few have ranged from actually great (Wonder Woman) to fun and adequate (Justice League) to fun but awful (Suicide Squad) as long as this stays on that spectrum and we get plenty of shirtless Jason Mamoa, I’m cool.

Mary Poppins Returns – 12/25

The rule of thumb was “Marvel To Star Wars” except for that I’ve realized it’s more often actually “Marvel to Big Budget Splashy Flashy Musical” (Even that first movie season that wasn’t really movie season ended with Les Mis) (Others have wrapped with Into The Woods, La La Land and The Greatest Showman) As I mentioned above, I’m on board for the expensive Disney Fanfic. Especially when it features Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda, yes please.

I know there are some big gaps in there, (All of September, for example) but I’m sure as more releases get announced and I start seeing trailers, I’ll fill in those cracks. Plus, I am going to try to do more Indies this year. I know I say it every year, but there’s really no excuse anymore. I have easy access to an excellent Bow-Tie cinema and quick cheap access to NYC.

Anyway, tomorrow we’ll review Infinity War, if I can stop crying long enough.

Happy Movie Season!

 

“It Matters Most That We Stay Together”

Happy Movie Season 2016!!!!! As I move into my fourth summer here and my third official movie season (where does the time go?) it really couldn’t have kicked off better than with Captain America: Civil War.

Civil War

While Civil War doesn’t quite hit the highs of The Winter Soldier (to be honest it will be very hard for any movie to ever hit those highs again.) it’s a really worthy entry into the MCU and proof positive that these movies might be able to scale back their conflicts a little.

Yes, believe it or not a movie that features an epic 10 + minute long melee between 10 superheroes actually feels quite small, because that fight is not actually the climax of the movie. (Though it is awesome.) There are two conflicts throughout the film that eventually converge.

After the events of Age of Ultron The United Nations has drafted The Sokovia Accords, which would put the Avengers under the jurisdiction of, well, now Secretary of State Thunder Bolt Ross. This splits the team in two, Captain America, Falcon, Hawkeye and Scarlett Witch on one and Iron Man, Black Widow, War Machine and Vision on the other. Each team also recruits a bug themed guy. (Mans Ant and Spider respectively.)

The second conflict is of course, Bucky centric. Now living in hiding, a bombing during the finalization of the accords that kills the king of Wakanda is blamed on The Winter Soldier. So obviously, the prince of Wakanda T’Challa is out for revenge and Steve needs to deal with that.

There’s a conspiracy, there’s quips, and in my favorite moment, Steve and Sharon finally kiss. (With Bucky and Sam looking on and nodding approvingly.) But the real conflict is far more emotional, torn between his two friends, Steve has to choose and that emotion explodes in the punchy punchy finale. There’s a lot going on and I don’t want to spoil much of the plot which has some fun zig zag moments.

Rankings!

  1. Captain America: Civil War

Trailers!

X-Men: Apocalypse

YASSSS! EPICCCC!!!!! SOPHIE TURNER BEING A BADASS!!! OLIVIA MUNN BEING A BADASSS! OSCAR ISAAC STILL SEXY EVEN WHEN WEIRD AND BLUE!!!! STORM WITH MOHAWK!!!!

Jason Bourne

Julia Stiles is back in this one! I am overjoyed by that. I wish that Julia Stiles was in more movies. She’s great. Oh, also so much building jumping.

The Secret Life of Pets

I might be looking forward to this in ways I’m not looking forward to many of the action movies this year. It looks completely perfect and adorable.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

It just looks so good you guys. So good, At-Ats! Just everywhere!

Movie Season 2015: Let’s Go To The Movies

This has been a long and active movie season. I was going to wait another week to write it up and then I realized that I am not going to see anymore movies and I needed a post to put up today. So. Here’s Movie Season, and what I remember from each movie.

1. The Martian

I’m kind of amazed, given where I started with all of this how most of the big splashy block buster are more towards the middle. Not that The Martian isn’t flashy, it’s just, I don’t know, more serious? I can’t explain it. I did love this movie. And I looovvvveddd the book it’s based on

2. Straight Outta Compton

I like hip hop now. I really never did. I am the whitest white girl to ever not even. But if my Lululemon and Ugg Clad, Pumpkin Spice Swilling, Tequila Shooting ass can relate to the story of NWA as presented in this film anyone can.

3. Creed

It was a big year for re-quels (I saw and covered four of them) and this was by far the best one, and the most effective. It’s the second best Rocky movie ever. (After the first Rocky) and manages to be entirely it’s own thing while paying tribute to this huuugge iconic monolith. It’s an exceptional feat of film making and OMG PUT MICHAEL B. JORDAN IN EVERYTHING

4. Crimson Peak

I still giggle every time I think about Crimson Peak, which, honestly is not that often, but still. I’m sure once it makes it’s HBO rotations I’ll watch it like six more times. And we saw Tom Hiddleston butt! And it’s feminist! And there are ghosts! This movie is an underrated gem.

5. Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Stop it. You’re crying. I’m not still crying nearly a week later, that would be ridiculous. But the magic is back. It’s back in a big way. I’ll probably see it again…and again…and again and again until I finally have no more tears to cry.

6. Bridge of Spies

The more I think about it, this might be my new favorite non Dino related Spielberg movie. It’s definitely my new favorite Tom Hanks performance. It’s very beautiful. And the movie is good. It’s quiet, but affecting

7. Mockingjay Part 2

This series is over. I’m going to miss it. The movie itself is something deeply special, but I still think that Mockingjay Part 1 is the best part of the series.

8. The Man From UNCLE

Speaking of underrated gems. The lack of love this movie got is criminal. It was awesome. 

9. Spectre

Also awesome. As Aless and I exclaimed as we watched it, “He had a suit on under his other suit!” Which is ridiculous. And Wonderful.

10. Ant-Man

It’s a testament to how strong the fall was that Ant-Man fell so in the middle of the pack because it was probably my favorite movie of the summer. I need to watch it again, but everytime I think about it, I get super happy.

11. Mad Max: Fury Road

WE LIVE WE DIE WE LIVE AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Another that I need to revisit, but I did absolutely adore it. I actually have a plan to do a kind of roundtable about this movie with other pop culture and feminism loving ladies I know.

12. Inside Out

Oh, there’s the crying again.

13. Trainwreck

I’ve only fallen harder for Amy Schumer since this movie came out and I’m convinced that she’s living exactly the life I wanted to live when I was twelve years old. (I no longer want that life, but I’m very impressed by it.)

14. Tomorrowland

Every time I tell people that this movie is worth watching, they looked at me like I’m insane. But it really, really, is. Is it the best movie ever. Of course not, but it’s worth a look.

15. Jurassic World

I loved this movie so much that I’m afraid to watch it again and learn that it was really, really stupid. But also…Chris Pratt…sooooo…..

16. Ricki And The Flash

I…sort of forgot I saw this. But Sebastian Stan was all smiley in it, which is something I can get behind because he has a lovely smile and he’s often so mopey.

17. Avengers: Age of Ultron

God what a messy disappointment, huh? I still like Bruce/Natasha though, and Hawkeye’s boring family.

18. Minions

What even is this movie? I don’t remember, I saw a lot of movies this year.

19. Fantastic Four

BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooooooooooooooooooooooooo

20. Terminator: Genisys

I badly wish that this had been good. It very easily could have been, and I still maintaining, “watching Khaleesi punch Computer Doctor in the face,” is a good idea for a movie. I mean literally that though, not some other characters played by Emilia Clarke and Matt Smith

21. Entourage

Ha. hahahahahahahahahahaha. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

22. Pitch Perfect 2

How much I disliked this movie made me sad, because I loved Pitch Perfect so much.

 

So, that’s this year’s Movie season! I had a lot of fun, but I’m also glad that it’s over and I take a bit of a breather. (I mean, I’ll still see Hateful 8 and maybe The Revenant and probably Joy, but I don’t feel like I need to.) 

Time to gear up for 2016, which begins with Captain America: Civil War in May!

Have you heard of me? You probably haven’t heard of me

Ant Man

OK.

I can admit when I’m wrong.

I can admit when it’s time to let go of my preconceived notions and think something that I previously thought wasn’t going to work is actually really really freaking great!

And Ant-Man, is really, really freaking great.

OK, from here on in we’re into spoiler land.

You have been warned.

Ant-Man opens with a CGI younged up Michael Douglas as Hank Pym walking into a half built Triscallion in 1989 to tell Howard Stark, Peggy Carter and some other guy that they can’t have his tech.

Oh, and John Slattery is back as Howard.

And Hayley Atwell in old makeup.

Right, so, if you were worried, at all, Peggy Carter is in this movie.

We jump forward in time and see Scott Lang getting out of prison. Scott’s an expert cat burglar, but he’s planning on going straight for the sake of his young daughter Cassie. He gets sucked into one last score by his old cell mate, but it turns out to be a set up by Pym and his daughter Hope, who want Scott to stop Pym’s former protege from creating weapons tech from the shrinking technology Hank created back in the day.

Paul Rudd is great, Evangeline Lilly is great, Michael Douglas is great. The guys on Scott’s crew are amazing. A fight sequence between Scott and Falcon (yup!) is stellar. All of the ant stuff is awesome.

The movie is great in a way that we haven’t seen from Marvel in a while. It’s fun the way Iron Man was fun, but is also not at all like Iron Man, if that makes any sense?

Go see the movie!

Rankings

  1. Ant-Man
  2. Mad Max: Fury Road (You had a good run, may you ride shiny and chrome, you live, you die, you live again.)
  3. Inside Out
  4. Tomorrowland
  5. Jurassic World
  6. Avengers: Age of Ultron
  7. Minions
  8. Terminator: Genisys
  9. Entourage
  10. Pitch Perfect: 2

Trailers

The Walk: I look forward to watching this on HBO some day. Aless is annoyed because the documentary about this was already great. I’m inclined to agree.

Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation Alright, ok, I’ll go.

POST CREDITSSSSSSSSSSSS

Seriously, I don’t want these spoiled for anyone at all. They’re that good. In the “mid-credits” as it’s been called, we see Hope and Hank, a large bit of the tension in the movie comes from the fact that Hank doesn’t want Hope shrinking, as her mother, Janet VanDyne was lost in the micro world. But he finally understands that he needs to let her go, and shows her the Wasp Suit. Hope smiles and says, “Well, it’s about damn time!” To which Aless and I shouted, “HELL YEAH IT IS!” About damn time for The Wasp, about damn time for another female super hero in the MCU, about damn time for all of this shit. 

And then it got even better as the credits faded out, we see Sam walking down a dark hallway and greeting Steve, they walk over to another space and there’s Bucky, glaring at them and breathing heavily, you know, like you do when your best friend and his new best friend have you chained to a thing, probably because you were brainwashed to kill them, or whatever. So BUCKY ALIVE AND FOUND, and then Steve says, “We can’t tell Tony, we don’t know what he can even do because of The Accords.” Sam looks at Steve and says, “I might know a guy.”

WE SEE YOU ALL AT CIVIL WAR! (I’m freaking out. Seriously, we were squeeing all over the place.)

We Are Not Things

Mad Max

There are a million things that have already been said about Mad Max: Fury Road, and I don’t know that I want to add to the din.

But it’s wonderful.

I don’t know how to describe it or recommend it highly enough. It’s a two hour long car chase through the desert, done with mostly practical effects. (Whether you like the movie or not is based on whether you like the idea of a two hour long car chase through the desert. I happen to think that’s awesome.)

It’s surprisingly feminist, reenforcing the idea that no one belongs to anyone else, and delving into themes of human trafficking, without, well, actually talking about human trafficking at all. It’s pretty, pretty great.

Charlize Theron’s Imperator Furiosa is a remarkable character who will hopefully live on through the ages.

Tom Hardy as Max is servicable. What’s cool here is that it’s not really his story, but he’s certainly a large agent in it. Hardy is talented and charismatic. He is not Mel Gibson. This is not his fault and should not really be held against him. But I mean, it’s Mad Max…this is complicated in my brain.

George Miller spent over 10 years of his life making this movie. It shows.

SEE THIS MOVIE. At all costs, just do it. It’s so, so, so, so very worth it.

Rankings:

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road
  2. Tomorrowland
  3. Avengers: Age of Ultron
  4. Pitch Perfect: 2

Trailers:

Jurrasic World: OK WE GET IT THE MOVIE IS GOING TO BE AWESOME! I’m actually really excited about this. Who else?

Ant-Man: Starting to get a little hyped, but still not really into it. Will still see it.

Fantastic Four: I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHY I’M SO EXCITED! I DON’T EVEN LIKE THE FANTASTIC FOUR!

Vacation: Might be awesome, might completely suck? There will be no in between.

Entourage: Dude? Seriously? VINNIE IS DIRECTING THE MOVIE? This is going to be terrible. I’ll report back tomorrow!

It wasn’t always like this

Tomorrowland

New York Magazine’s review of Tomorrowland called it the “anti-Hunger Games.” And while, yes, in many ways this movie shares a twisted version of that series’s DNA, it’s also very much it’s own wonderful thing.

The plot, without spoiling too much is standard Heroes Journey stuff. Florida Teen Casey Newton hears a call (she touches a magical pin that takes her to another world). She’s then lead there by a herald, a little robot girl named Athena, to her mentor, Frank Walker.

Then they go on a fantastical adventure to save the world.

That’s selling the movie short, because I came out of it grinning from ear to ear, madly in love with Casey as a protagonist, and the word “delightful” kept coming up as the best way to describe the movie.

I’ve made no secret of the fact that I’ve been looking for this movie for years, and actively anticipating it since last October. (Remember, when I saw George Clooney all up close and stuff? I may have mentioned it a time or ten.) And it didn’t disappoint at all.

When I was a kid on rainy Saturdays my dad would take us to the video store and we would rent movies. A lot of the time he’d be sharing stuff with us that he’d loved before we were born, Star Wars, Indiana Jones, The Princess Bride. I’ve spent a good chunk of my 20’s on the look out for those movies for when my kids are born. The Avengers, Pacific Rim, and now, Tomorrowland.

The cast is wonderful. Britt Robertson delivers as Casey and Raffey Cassidy as Athena are wonderful. George Clooney and Hugh Laurie are, of course, superb. Thomas Robinson turns in a really fun performance as young Frank and you can’t help but see the similarities between him and Clooney. (Seriously, that kid should grow up to be quite good looking.) There are fun small roles by Tim McGraw as Casey’s dad. (Seriously, I’m always surprised by Tim McGraw as actor, he’s always reliably good.), Kathryn Hahn and Keegan Michael Key (If he turns in one more awesome and unexpected performance this year, he is The King Of Movie Season 2105, he’s been GREAT these past two weeks.) A lot of people try to give out the name “The New Spielberg,” as if they will ever be another, but Brad Bird comes close, getting the action and feelings of each scene exactly right.

I should also note that Disney has been on a roll. I’ve seen every release since Frozen in a theater and the only one that hasn’t met or exceeded my expectations has been Maleficent.

Rankings!

  1. Tomorrowland
  2. Avengers: Age of Ultron
  3. Pitch Perfect 2

Trailers:

Shaun The Sheep: This animation studio has never been one of my favorites. But it looks serviceable enough in the Wallace and Grommit and Chicken Run vein.

Pixels: Can we just…not, maybe? There’s an excellent “Tales of Interest” segment from Futurama, watch that instead.

Paper Towns: Ugh, everytime I see an ad for this I want  to throw things. And this coming from a woman who once called Nick And Norah’s Infinite Playlist “unappreciated genius.” Again, I think I’m just too old/not old enough to be into it.

Star Wars: Remember last year, when I got inappropriately weepy at each and every X-Men: Days of Future Past or Mockingjay trailer? This is going to  be like that. I saw the Lucasfilm logo, and was like, “nope I got this, I’ll be fine this time.” I heard the music, felt a lump in my throat. Saw the Darth Vader helmet and swallowed. Mark Hamill began narrating and my eyes welled up. The screen went black and the tears started to roll.

Ant-Man: I’m trying you guys, but I just don’t care. I wish I did, and I’m hoping to be proven wrong, but I just…can’t get psyched.