Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)

Avengers: Age of Ultron
Director: Joss Whedon
Writer: Joss Whedon
Based on: the comics by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby
Sequel to: The Avengers
Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett JohanssonJames SpaderAaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth OlsenPaul Bettany, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Stellan Skarsgard, Don Cheadle, Anthony Mackie, Hayley Atwell, Idris Elba, Linda Cardellini, Claudia Kim, Thomas Kretschmann, Andy Serkis, Julie Delpy, Stan Lee
Part of: Marvel movies
Seen on: 26.04.2015

Plot:
The Avengers – that is Tony Stark/Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Steve Rogers/Captain America (Chris Evans), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Bruce Banner/The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Clint Barton/Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) – have become quite a team. In their most recent take-down of Hydra men, they managed to get back Loki’s scepter. Before Thor can take it back to his world, Tony and Bruce ask to analyze it and they discover a form of intelligence inside of the scepter. They decide to use it to try and create an AI as a defense program. They succeed and said program – Ultron (James Spader) – comes to life. Unfortunately he has his own vision of what a safe world looks like and the Avengers have to face Tony’s and Bruce’ creation.

I really loved the last Avengers movie, and this sequel has many of the same strengths. Unfortunately it also has a lot more problems than the first one, especially when it comes to plot and character development. Nevertheless I really enjoyed myself.

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28 Weeks Later (2007)

28 Weeks Later
Director: Juan Carlos Fresnadillo
Writer: Rowan Joffe, Juan Carlos Fresnadillo, Enrique López Lavigne, Jesús Olmo
Sequel to: 28 Days Later…
Cast: Imogen Poots, Mackintosh Muggleton, Robert Carlyle, Rose Byrne, Jeremy Renner, Harold Perrineau, Catherine McCormack, Idris Elba
Seen on: 02.04.2015

Plot:
After the virus outbreak that decimated the population of the UK, it is time to rebuild and repopulate the island. Don (Robert Carlyle) survived on the island and is waiting for his children Tammy (Imogen Poots) and Andy (Mackintosh Muggleton) to join him – the first children back on UK soil. Medical officer Scarlet (Rose Byrne) is a little miffed that she wasn’t informed about it – and she really doesn’t approve. Another outbreak could still happen. When the children find their obviously infected and supposedly dead mother (Catherine McCormack), everything starts to go wrong.

28 Weeks Later was a more than decent zombie movie. Even if I didn’t totally love it, I very much enjoyed it and I thought it was a really good sequel.

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Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (2013)

Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom
Director: Justin Chadwick
Writer: William Nicholson
Based on: Nelson Mandela‘s autobiography
Cast: Idris Elba, Naomie Harris, Tony Kgoroge, Riaad Moosa, Zolani Mkiva, Simo Mogwaza

Plot:
Nelson Mandela (Idris Elba) is an up and coming lawyer in South Africa – or as up and coming as a black guy can be under apartheid. Bit by bit, though, he is drawn into the political movement. Supported by his second wife Winnie (Naomie Harris) he becomes a leader and instigator and is finally arrested. But even when he’s in prison, he still serves as a symbol for the revolution.

Mandela is not a particularly good film, despite the excellent performances and the interesting topic. The script lacks coherence, the pacing is off and it’s just really, really long.

mandela-long-walk-to-freedom

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Thor: The Dark World (2013)

Thor: The Dark World
Director: Alan Taylor
Writer: Christopher Yost, Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely
Based on: Stan Lee‘s, Larry Lieber‘s and Jack Kirby‘s comic character
Sequel to: Thor
Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Natalie Portman, Stellan Skarsgard, Kat Dennings, Idris Elba, Rene Russo, Anthony Hopkins, Christopher Eccleston, Ray Stevenson, Tadanobu Asano, Zachary Levi , Jaimie Alexander, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Jonathan Howard, Chris O’Dowd, [SPOILERS] Benicio Del Toro, Chris Evans
Part of: Marvel movies

Plot:
Ever since the events in Avengers, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) has done his best to ensure the peace across the realms, while Loki (Tom Hiddleston) is locked up on Asgard. Which means that Thor doesn’t have time for Jane (Natalie Portman) who is still waiting for him. But when Jane stumbles on the Aether, an ancient weapon, Thor comes to her aid, just as Malekith (Christopher Eccleston) comes for the Aether, planning to destroy the universe with it.

As much as I love the first Thor movie – and I do – I have to admit that it doesn’t quite reach the heights that Thor: The Dark World reaches. I can’t remember the last time I laughed so hard in a movie, especially an action movie. It does almost everything completely right and it’s just plain great.

thor-the-dark-world

[SPOILERS]

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Re-Watch: Thor (2011)

Thor
Director: Kenneth Branagh
Writer: Ashley Miller, Zack Stentz, Don Payne
Based on: Stan Lee‘s, Larry Lieber‘s and Jack Kirby‘s comic character
Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Natalie Portman, Stellan Skarsgard, Kat Dennings, Idris Elba, Rene Russo, Anthony Hopkins, Clark Gregg, Ray Stevenson, Tadanobu Asano, Josh Dallas, Jaimie Alexander, Samuel L. Jackson, Jeremy Renner
Part of: Marvel movies
[Here’s my first review.]

Plot:
After yet another attack by the Frost Giants on Asgard, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) loses his cool and together with his brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) pays them a rather violent visit. Their father Odin (Anthony Hopkins) is less than happy about this and decides to ban Thor to Earth until he’s learned his lesson and is less rash. On Earth, scientist Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) stumbles upon Thor and doesn’t really know what to do with him. And if it wasn’t challenging enough for Thor to try and return to Asgard, a shitload of trouble is brewing with Loki.

Even on re-watching, Thor is an absolutely entertaining and fun-filled film with a great cast and really good pacing. I enjoyed the hell out of it again.

thor

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Pacific Rim (2013)

Pacific Rim
Director: Guillermo del Toro
Writer: Guillermo del Toro, Travis Beacham
Cast: Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day, Burn GormanMax MartiniRobert Kazinsky, Ron Perlman, Diego Klattenhoff

Plot:
In the future huge monsters – kaijus – have started to rise from the sea. To defend themselves humanity has developed huge robots – jaegers – that have to be piloted by two people at the same time, for which they need a certain neurological compatibility. One of these pilots is Raleigh (Charlie Hunnam), who lost his co-pilot and brother and has since retired. But he gets re-recruited by Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba) who plans a last ditch effort to keep the monsters at bay before the jaeger program is disbanded.

I was disappointed by Pacific Rim. With all the positive reviews and buzz the movie gathered (and Guillermo del Toro at the helm), I’m afraid that my expectations were just way too high.

pacific-rim

[Slight SPOILERS]

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Prometheus (2012)

Prometheus
Director: Ridley Scott
Writer: Jon Spaihts, Damon Lindelof
Prequel to: the Alien movies (kinda)
Cast: Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron, Idris Elba, Guy Pearce, Logan Marshall-Green, Sean Harris, Rafe Spall, Emun Elliott, Benedict Wong, Kate Dickie

Plot:
After scientists find several unrelated cave paintings and murals that all depict the same star constellation, a mission is sent out to go to the planet and find out what’s there. And at first, the Promethes mission seems a full success – much to the joy to the scientist team of Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) and Charlie Holloway (Logan Marshall-Green). But the android David (Michael Fassbender) seems to have his own mission.

This is a pretty, pretty movie with some pretty, pretty people in it. And the cast really does try their best. But all their talent and all the pretty in the world can’t make up for the sheer stupidity of this film.

[SPOILERS]

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Thor (2011)

Thor is Kenneth Branagh‘s newest film, starring Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Natalie Portman, Stellan Skarsgard, Kat Dennings, Idris Elba, Rene Russo and Anthony Hopkins.

Plot:
After yet another attack by the Frost Giants on Asgard, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) loses his cool and together with his brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) pays them a rather violent visit. Their father Odin (Anthony Hopkins) is less than happy about this and decides to ban Thor to Earth until he’s learned his lesson and is less rash. On Earth, scientist Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) stumbles upon Thor and doesn’t really know what to do with him. And if it wasn’t challenging enough for Thor to try and return to Asgard, a shitload of trouble is brewing with Loki.

Thor is brilliant. THE END.

Alright, alright. I’ll write more, though the general message will stay the same: The movie is funny, it looks wonderful, the casting is excellent and did I mention Kenneth Branagh’s impeccable comedic timing? In short, this movie is serious fun.

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The Losers (2010)

The Losers is the adaptation of the comic by Andy Diggle and Jock. It was directed by Sylvain White and stars Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Zoe Saldana, Chris Evans, Idris Elba, Columbus Short, Óscar Jaenada and Jason Patric.

Plot:
Led by Clay (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), the Losers are a team of highly trained military men working for the US. When a mission of theirs in Bolivia goes haywire and someone called Max (Jason Patric) starts giving them orders, the Losers start to disobey and finally have to fake their own death. A short while later, they meet the mysterious Aisha (Zoe Saldana) who promises that she can bring them back to the US and will even help them find Max – if they kill him for her.

The Losers is not an artful masterpiece. But it’s a movie filled with wisecracking characters who deliver a new one-liner every two minutes (alternating them with the explosions). It’s mostly well-acted and it’s quite frankly pure fun.

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