NEW SEASON! – STRANGER THINGS 3

Great news citizens of Hawkins, Indiana! Stranger Things will return to Netflix for Season 3!

Not sure of an official release date yet, but its great to know Mike, Dustin, Eleven, Lucas, Will and even newbie Max will be back to save us from what still remains in the upside down….

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NEW SHOW | STAR TREK: DISCOVERY

STARRING: Sonequa Martin-Green, Michelle Yeoh, Jason Isaacs

Today was the Netflix release of Star Trek: Discovery, the newest Star Trek series since Enterprise in 2005.

This series revolves around the Commander Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green), an intelligent and head strong young human woman who has been raised by Vulcans after her family were killed by Klingons. When their ship – USS Shenzhou – captained by Captain Georgiou (Michelle Yeoh) comes across an unknown object floating around in space; Commander Burnham volunteers to go and see what it is.

What she discovers – see what I did there – is the presence of Klingons who in this setting haven’t been seen in over a century. The first two episodes are then a battle of wills between Burnham and Captain Georgiou who differ on how to deal with the possible threat of the warrior race.

This all sets up for an exciting opening episode but for me, I was lost for a while in how much Burnham annoyed me! It’s the same annoyance that one feels for Mr Spock and his supreme intelligence and sense of superiority. However, because I was so annoyed by her only went to prove how well she’d embodied the characteristics of Vulcans.

The appearance of another familiar race – the Klingons – is done well as they feature heavily in the episodes as does their language. Their guttural language reminds me a lot of Dothraki but that’s neither here nor there; I’m sure George R.R. Martin got his inspiration from somewhere! Their leader’s drive for unification amongst their race against what they view as a common enemy is definitely relevant to current events. Whether this was intentional remains to be seen but it doesn’t go unnoticed, especially within the inclusion of such a diverse cast.

An African- American woman as the protagonist of a sci-fi series is virtually unheard of but can definitely work. Martin-Green does well enough in the role for me to continue watching it.

My only negative with the show is the effects. While it is set roughly ten years prior to the original Star Trek series – I’m talking Captain Kirk original here people – it looks slightly dated. I realise this may be keeping in line with the original but watching with 2017 eyes makes me a bit picky. I’m used to Apple HD level viewing; felt like I was watching through SnapChat on an Android 😉

Either way, I’ll be watching this and see if it brings any surprises along the way.

ALIEN: COVENANT – REVIEW

Starring: Michael Fassbender
Director: Ridley Scott
Running Time: 122mins
Cert: 15

Some of you may remember my review of Prometheus; the much anticipated prequel to the Alien franchise and the disaster i thought that was.

Alien: Covenant is no exception.

While this film actually wraps up any loose ends as to how the Xenomorphs were created and why; it was still let down by the acting and the lack of real action. The ultimate revelation at the end of the film is definitely insightful and a little shocking; but this was let down by everything else that went on before.

In short, Ridley Scott basically re made Alien with more unknown characters and a monster that because this being prequel of course; a monster we had already seen. The shock factor of the Xenomorph was lost in many ways because we’re not particularly scared of it anymore. Sure, its still shocking and gory but the ‘fear of the unknown’ of the original films is lost because now you’re just anticipating when the facehugger is going to come out of the egg or when the extra mouth is going to pop out of the black adult alien.

Sadly, it was all very cliche and it didnt even have characters that you could sympathise with or relate to in this outing. For people who are meant to be scientists and prepared for medical emergencies or ship malfunctions etc. once something bad happened; they all seemed to fall apart very quickly. Within an hour; half the crew were dead and you either didnt really care or thought it was their own fault.

The one saving grace of the film is of course, Michael Fassbender. The one star in the film; of course not counting Guy Pierce in the opening credits and James Franco in a throwback of a home movie. His portrayal of the androids David and Walter are amazing. His movements, his speech; his lust for art and culture while in David form is fantastic and more so very believable.

I anticipated his scenes as they created a sense of foreboding that had you on the edge of your seat. Not physically of course but more so in anticipating what he was going to and when; where everyone else was pretty predictable.

The film gets points for nostalgia purposes but generally, its really…plain. Theres nothing to gloriously praise or even criticise. Its just kind of…there.

Alien: Covenant is out May 12th.

 

PROMETHEUS: Epic Sci-Fi or Epic fail?

Hmm…
Im trying not to be one of those film critics /bloggers who hates every film they see just to be different but so far, nothing has been tickling my fancy.
Prometheus is sadly no exception.

As most real movie goers (by real i mean Transformer and Superhero films are not the only films you get excited about) i was excited about what Prometheus had to offer and as aforementioned, it failed to deliver.
As always, its best and easiest to start at the beginning and that was definitely captivating. The initial shot of outer space and carefully selected montage of epic landscapes set the scene for a truly spectacular setting but as the film progressed, this failed to be the case. Sure it was set in space but thats as epic as it got.

No epic fight scenes between man and beast. No tiptoeing around dark corners trying to detect where said beast could be hiding. No money shot of conquered beasts head on a metaphoric spike. Keeping it one hundred as you can always count on me to do, the film missed the boat of complete and utter epic failure just because of the ending. Waiting two and a half hours for what could have been accomplished in the first half an hour; if not sooner was poor judgement in the plot and structure department.

In the way of actors, Michael Fassbender (Young Magneto for those that don’t know) played an excellent cyborg robot thingy and was the most believable of all the characters. Idris Elba’s accent? Lets not disrespect the one negro in the film please. The rest off the unknowns played their position as very stock sci fi characters: over zealous female scientist and quirky geologists/biologists and trigger happy security personnel. Charlize Theron, though she played her iron lady character well enough, her presence quite frankly wasnt needed.

As i touched on earlier, the best part of the film was the ending and this was only because you finally saw and understood the connection between this film and the Alien Quadrilogy (Alien VS Predator franchise not included)

As a movie lover and one able to appreciate good movie making, i can honestly say that the film itself was made very well. With a director like Ridley Scott, this was always going to be the case but in terms of general content and the wow factor, the film was missing a lot. I was left with a few unanswered questions for a plot that quite frankly sounded as though it had been thrown together in order to quickly create a movie that would make lots of money.

Epic fail? Sadly, but yes 😦