Thor: Ragnarok (2017)

Thor: Ragnarok
Director: Taika Waititi
Writer: Eric Pearson, Craig Kyle, Christopher L. Yost
Based on: Stan Lee‘s, Larry Lieber‘s and Jack Kirby‘s comic character
Sequel to: Thor, Thor: The Dark World
Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Tom HiddlestonMark Ruffalo, Cate Blanchett, Idris Elba, Jeff Goldblum, Tessa Thompson, Karl Urban, Anthony Hopkins, Benedict Cumberbatch, Taika Waititi, Rachel House, Clancy Brown, Tadanobu Asano, Ray Stevenson, Zachary Levi, Luke Hemsworth, Sam Neill, Matt Damon, Ken Watanabe
Part of: Marvel movies
Seen on: 4.11.2017
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Plot:
Thor (Chris Hemsworth) is fighting to prevent Ragnarok – the end of the world. Having successfully defeated the demon Surtur, he returns to Asgard, only to find Loki (Tom Hiddleston) posing as their father Odin (Anthony Hopkins). After having located the real Odin, he tells Thor and Loki that Ragnarok is still coming: the real threat is their sister Hela (Cate Blanchett). It doesn’t take long for Hela to appear and show how much of a threat she really is.

Thor: Ragnarok is probably the best Marvel film to date. It’s entertaining, full of queer (and also straight) aesthetics and had me in literal tears it’s so funny. It’s absolutely lovely.

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Pete’s Dragon (2016)

Pete’s Dragon
Director: David Lowery
Writer: David Lowery, Toby Halbrooks
Remake of: Pete’s Dragon (1977)
Cast: Oakes Fegley, Bryce Dallas Howard, Robert Redford, Oona Laurence, Wes Bentley, Karl Urban, Isiah Whitlock Jr., Marcus Henderson
Seen on: 31.8.2016

Plot:
After his parents die in a car crash, Pete (Oakes Fegley) finds himself in the woods, seemingly all alone. But it soon turns out that there is somebody with him after all: a big, green dragon Pete calls Elliot. Together they have a good life in the forest until the local lumber company run by brothers Jack (Wes Bentley) and Gavin (Karl Urban) starts encroaching on their territory. Pete becomes curious and approaches Jack’s daughter Natalie (Oona Laurence), which ultimately leads to him being caught by the adults and brought in to the city by ranger Grace (Bryce Dallas Howard), who happens to be Jack’s fiancée. But Pete doesn’t want to leave the forest behind, much less Elliot – and his stories of a dragon in the forest can become quite dangerous for Elliot.

Pete’s Dragon is very different from the movie it’s based on, but I did enjoy it – more so than I expected I would. But I didn’t really fall in love with it.

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Star Trek Beyond (2016)

Star Trek Beyond
Director: Justin Lin
Writer: Simon PeggDoug JungRoberto OrciPatrick McKayJohn D. Payne
Based on: Gene Roddenberry‘s TV show
Sequel to: Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness
Cast: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon PeggJohn Cho, Anton Yelchin, Idris ElbaSofia BoutellaJoe TaslimLydia WilsonDanny PudiGreg GrunbergShea Whigham
Seen on: 26.7.2016

Plot:
The Enterprise is about halfway through their five year mission of exploring uncharted space. But five years is a long time and Captain Kirk (Chris Pine) starts wondering about other career options. Before things get very far, though, they all land at Starbase Yorketown. The base has recently rescued Kalara (Lydia Wilson), a scientist whose ship was attacked. The Enterprise is sent off to rescue the rest of Kalara’s crew, but things don’t go as planned: instead the Enterprise is destroyed and the crew is stranded on the planet Altamid.

Star Trek Beyond was an entertaining film again and – to a non-Trekkie like me – it felt like the trekkiest of the new films so far. There are still a whole lot of plot holes and not everything worked flawlessly for me, but I had fun watching it.

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Re-Watch: Red (2010)

Red
Director: Robert Schwentke
Writer: Jon Hoeber, Erich Hoeber
Based on: Warren Ellis‘ and Cully Hamner‘s comic
Cast: Bruce Willis, Mary-Louise Parker, John Malkovich, Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren, Brian Cox, Karl Urban, Julian McMahon, Richard Dreyfuss, James Remar
[Here’s my first review.]

Plot:
Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) enjoys his retirement. Most notably, he enjoys his monthly calls to his represntative at his insurance company, Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker). Shortly before he gets the courage to actually see her, though, his CIA-operative past catches up with him: a kill squad comes to his house and levels it pretty much completely. Frank survives, the assassins don’t but now Frank has to get Sarah to safety and then call on the help of his old squad – Joe (Morgan Freeman), Marvin (John Malkovich), Victoria (Helen Mirren) and Ivan (Brian Cox). All the while he’s being hunted by CIA-agent William Cooper (Karl Urban).

Red still is one hell of an entertaining movie. I think I enjoyed it just as much as the first time round.

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[SPOILERS]

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Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)

Star Trek Into Darkness
Director: J. J. Abrams
Writer: Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman, Damon Lindelof
Based on: Gene Roddenberry‘s TV show
Sequel to: Star Trek
Cast: Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, Benedict Cumberbatch, John Cho, Anton Yelchin, Alice EveBruce GreenwoodPeter Weller, Noel Clarke, Leonard Nimoy

Plot:
After a couple of attacks on Starfleet by John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) and his subsequent escape to the Klingon home planet Kronos, Kirk (Chris Pine) and his crew are sent there with a new kind of missile to kill Harrison. Even though Spock (Zachary Quinto) and Scotty (Simon Pegg) have their doubts about the legitimacy of that mission, Kirk sticks to it. At first at least.

I expected Star Trek Into Darkness to be fun in a not exactly intelligent way. Nevertheless I had my problems enjoying it because it was just so damn dumb. But even that I wouldn’t have minded so much if the pacing had been a little better. It’s still enjoyable, but just not as much as I had hoped.

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Dredd (2012)

Dredd
Director: Pete Travis
Writer: Alex Garland
Based on: John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra‘s comic
Cast: Karl Urban, Olivia Thirlby, Lena Headey, Wood Harris, Domhnall Gleeson, Rakie Ayola

Plot:
In this ultra-violet future, there is no more separation of power – there is only the Judges, who are not only judges, but also jury and executioner all roled into one. And one of the best of these enforcers is Judge Dredd (Karl Urban). That’s why the Chief Judge (Rakie Ayola) asks him to take on Anderson (Olivia Thirlby), a new recruit. She failed her entrance exam but because she’s a powerful telekinetic, they want to give her a chance anyway. And it just so happens that their first case leads them to an apartment house controlled by Ma-Ma (Lena Headey), an extremely dangerous drug dealer. And suddenly Anderson and Dredd find themselves locked in that building with a whole lot of goons with a whole lot of firepower after them.

Dredd should have been better than it was. If you look at the parts separately, they are pretty damn awesome, but if you put them altogether you get a movie that is somehow less than that. Instead it was rather boring and unengaging.

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The Bourne Supremacy (2004)

The Bourne Supremacy
Director: Paul Greengrass
Writer: Tony Gilroy
Based on: Robert Ludlum‘s novel
Sequel to: The Bourne Identity
Cast: Matt Damon, Franka Potente, Brian Cox, Julia Stiles, Karl Urban, Joan Allen, Marton Csokas, Michelle Monaghan

Plot:
Jason (Matt Damon) and Marie (Franka Potente) have been hiding for quite a while, but Jason’s past, while still not entirely clear for him, catches up with them in the form of assassin Kirill (Karl Urban) who, instead of killing Jason, ends up killing Marie. So Jason goes after him and the Treadstone project, trying again to figure out what the hell happened.

The Bourne Supremacy might not be quite as good as The Bourne Identity, but it’s still a pretty decent film with a very good cast.

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Priest (2011)

Priest is Scott Stewart‘s adaptation of Min-Woo Hyung‘s graphic novel, written by Cory Goodman and starring Paul Bettany, Maggie Q, Karl Urban, Cam Gigandet, Lily Collins, Stephen Moyer, Brad Dourif and Christopher Plummer.

Plot:
As long as anybody can remember, humans and vampires have been battling each other. And the vampires seemed to be winning – until the Priests came along, a specially trained task force sent by the church. They managed to relegate the vampires to reservations and a kind of peace has settled over the war-destroyed world. But then a small town on the outskirts is overrun by vampires and the young Lucy (Lily Collins) is abducted. Lucy’s boyfriend Hicks (Cam Gigandet) calls on her uncle for help – a Priest (Paul Bettany). Together they go after the vampires.

Priest is everything it promises to be: full of oneliners that are instant classics, hammy performances and plot and characters from the stereotype shelf. In short, it’s absolutely craptastic. The only thing that was really unentertaining about it was the lack of naked Paul Bettany: he only got to undress once and then only for a couple of moments. Not okay.

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Red (2010)

Red is Robert Schwentke‘s adaptation of Warren Elliscomic, starring Bruce Willis, Mary-Louise Parker, John Malkovich, Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren, Brian Cox, Karl Urban, Julian McMahon and Richard Dreyfuss.

Plot:
Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) enjoys his retirement. Most notably, he enjoys his monthly calls to his represntative at his insurance company, Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker). Shortly before he gets the courage to actually see her, though, his CIA-operative past catches up with him: a kill squad comes to his house and levels it pretty much completely. Frank survives, the assassins don’t but now Frank has to get Sarah to safety and then call on the help of his old squad – Joe (Morgan Freeman), Marvin (John Malkovich), Victoria (Helen Mirren) and Ivan (Brian Cox). All the while he’s being hunted by CIA-agent William Cooper (Karl Urban).

Red is everything it promises to be: fun, full of action and oneliners and it’s very entertaining to see this group of people kick ass big time.

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Star Trek (2009)

Star Trek is, in this case, the new J. J. Abrams movie starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Zoe Saldana, Karl Urban, Simon Pegg, John Cho, Anton Yelchin, Eric Bana and Leonard Nimoy.  

Before I go into anything here, a quick disclaimer: I am not a Trekky (sp?). I have seen a few episodes of the various shows (mostly Voyager and DS9), but I never really got into the fandom. So, if you want a review by a fan, maybe deadra will write one someday or maybe she’ll leave her comments here.

Plot:
Star Trek tells the beginning of it all – how everybody got to know each other, how Spock (Zachary Quinto) and Kirk (Chris Pine) became friends and how everything started on the Enterprise.
After the death of his father (Chris Hemsworth), James Kirk grows up to be a rebel, constantly challenging the rules around him. He joins the Star Fleet, where he soon excels – and meets new friends, Uhura (Zoe Saldana) and McCoy (Karl Urban). Soon they all get pulled into the troubles arising from a Romulan ship that seems to be stranded in time.

Despite a few plot holes, Star Trek is a very entertaining movie with good acting, a nice sense of humour and perfect special effects. Having never really liked the show(s), I didn’t expect much but I was definitely pleasantly surprised and had a lot of fun – also as a not-Trekky. [Though deadra did have to explain a few things to me – there were some insider jokes I didn’t get.]

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[SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS]

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