Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Director: James Gunn
Writer: James Gunn
Based on: Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning‘s comic
Sequel to: Guardians of the Galaxy
Cast: Chris PrattZoe SaldanaDave BautistaVin DieselBradley CooperMichael RookerKaren GillanPom KlementieffSylvester StalloneKurt RussellElizabeth DebickiChris SullivanSean Gunn, Seth Green, Michael Rosenbaum, David HasselhoffVing RhamesMichelle Yeoh, Jeff GoldblumStan Lee
Part of: Marvel movies
Seen on: 3.5.2017

Plot:
Peter (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax (Dave Bautista), Rocket (Bradley Cooper) and Baby Groot (Vin Diesel) have made quite a reputation for themselves. People have even started to ask them for help. But it’s not easy to leave your old habits behind and when Rocket not only helps but also steals, one thing leads to another and the group find themselves crashing on a planet where they meet Ego (Kurt Russell) and Mantis (Pom Klementieff). This is not a coincidence: Ego tells Peter that he is his father, throwing him for quite a loop. But trouble has only just begun.

I was not a fan of the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie to begin with, and I thought that Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 was even weaker. At least Baby Groot was cute.

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Mechanic: Resurrection (2016)

Mechanic: Resurrection
Director: Dennis Gansel
Writer: Philip ShelbyTony MosherRachel LongBrian Pittman
Sequel to: The Mechanic
Cast: Jason StathamJessica AlbaTommy Lee JonesMichelle YeohSam HazeldineJohn CenatiempoToby EddingtonFemi Elufowoju Jr.Anteo Quintavalle
Seen on: 26.4.2017

Plot:
Arthur Bishop (Jason Statham) has retired from the assassination business and withdrawn to Rio. But he is approached there with a business proposal that he declines. Instead he goes to Thailand to visit with his friend Mei (Michelle Yeoh) and to escape the figurative heat. Also vacationing there is the beautiful Gina (Jessica Alba). But it seems that Gina might be more than just a regular vacationer and that the person trying to hire Arthur hasn’t given up on their plan just yet.

I was looking forward to Mechanic: Reurrection and then it never made its way to cinemas in Austria, at least not in an undubbed version. So when I saw that they had it on the airplane, of course I had to watch it. And it may not be quite as good as the first Mechanic, but it could have been a lot worse as well.

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Re-Watch: Sunshine (2007)

Sunshine
Director: Danny Boyle
Writer: Alex Garland
Cast: Cillian MurphyMichelle YeohTroy GarityRose ByrneHiroyuki SanadaBenedict WongChris EvansCliff CurtisMark Strong
Seen on: 27.11.2016

Plot:
2057. The sun is dying and the only solution humanity has found is to send a team of astronauts there to reignite it with a fission bomb or else find all of life on earth doomed. The first mission, Icarus-I, to do just that has already failed, now a new team, Icarus-II, is on its way. When they pick up the distress signal of the Icarus-I, they decide to pick up the bomb that the ship has aboard, as a failsafe for their own mission. But that bomb may come at a higher price than they expected.

When I watched Sunshine for the first time, I remember not being particularly taken with it. But it was one of those films where I started getting doubts about my own judgement and that made me curious to check it out again almost 10 years later. And in this case, it definitely paid off, although I still didn’t fall head over heels for it, I did appreciate it much more than the last time.

[SPOILERS]

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The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (2008)

The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
Director: Rob Cohen
Writer: Alfred Gough, Miles Millar
Sequel to: The Mummy, The Mummy Returns
Cast: Brendan Fraser, Maria Bello, Luke Ford, John Hannah, Jet Li, Michelle Yeoh, Isabella Leong, Russell Wong, Liam Cunningham, Anthony Wong Chau-Sang

Plot:
Alex (Luke Ford), son of the famous, but retired archeologists Rick (Brendan Fraser) and Evy (Maria Bello) tries to make a name for himself through a dig in China. And when he digs up the tomb of the Dragon Emperor (Jet Li), his efforts seem to have been successful. Then his parents turn up in China as well, on one last mission. And the Dragon Emperor comes back to life. Things go quickly downhill from there.

Where The Mummy Returns was a fun sequel, this one wasn’t anymore. It was just sub-par in pretty much every single aspect.

The-Mummy-Tomb-of-the-Dragon-Emperor

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The Lady (2011)

The Lady
Director: Luc Besson
Writer: Rebecca Frayn
Cast: Michelle Yeoh, David Thewlis, Jonathan Raggett, Jonathan Woodhouse, Benedict Wong

Plot:
Aung San Suu Kyi (Michelle Yeoh) thought she had left Burma behind. She built herself a life in the UK with her husband Michael Aris (David Thewlis) and her two sons Kim (Jonathan Raggett) and Alexander (Jonathan Woodhouse). But then her mother falls ill and she returns to Burma to take care of her. And suddenly Suu’s past catches up with her and she finds herself in the middle of the political change towards democracy in the country.

Aung San Suu Kyi is definitely a fascinating woman and Michelle Yeoh delivers a wonderful performance, but this movie has very many issues that pretty much eclipse those two facts.

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Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011)

Kung Fu Panda 2 is the first feature film by Jennifer Yuh, written by Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger and starring the voices of Jack Black, Angelina Jolie, Jackie Chan, Dustin Hoffman, Gary Oldman, Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu, David Cross, Michelle Yeoh, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Victor Garber, Danny McBride and James Hong. [Here’s my review of the first one.]

Plot:
Po (Jack Black), head of the Furious Five – Tigress (Angelina Jolie), Mantis (Seth Rogen), Viper (Lucy Liu), Monkey (Jackie Chan), Crane (David Cross) – is pretty content with his life. That is, until the kingdom is threatened by the evil Lord Shen (Gary Oldman) who developed a new weapon that is able to defeat Kung Fu and with which he plans to take over. But a soothsayer (Michelle Yeoh) has predicted his defeat – and his fate and Po’s seem to be more closely tied together than both realise at first.

Kung Fu Panda 2 is a very sweet film and an excellent sequel.The cast is good, the story is nice, but it’s the animation that really stands out: it’s that fantastic.

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What Just Happened?

Mathieu Kassovitz is one of my favourite directors (though he’s also a good actor). So, I had high hopes for Babylon A.D., even though Vin Diesel was the main actor. Plus Charlotte Rampling, Michelle Yeoh and Gérard Depardieu are a really strong cast.

I have to admit, the movie left me a bit confused. There were scenes, which were really cool, but mostly, it felt like they didn’t take their time. The introduction of the world was too short, things happened too quickly and everything just seemed so… hurried.

To defend my sweetie Kassovitz right away: He had some major issues with the production company and had to cut a lot of the movie and shoot scenes differently etc. Well, it was pretty noticeable. At least, I got the European version, which is about 10 minutes longer than the US American one.

There were many details that I liked a lot [the advertisements!] and the whole world seemed to be really well thought through. I haven’t read the book – Babylon Babies [French] by Maurice G. Dantec, but the film made me want to.

Unfortunately, they didn’t use Michelle Yeoh like they could have – in the action scenes, she gets to kick ass, but we hardly get to see it. Also, give me more Charlotte Rampling! And Gérard Depardieu!

I didn’t much like Aurora (Mélanie Thierry). She is pretty, but didn’t do anything else than look pretty and cry a bit. Even though she was physically the strongest, she was a really weak character.

Well, I think I can summarise it with saying that it was good material wasted, unfortunately.