“Moana” movie review

I had the honor of seeing “Moana” yesterday with some friends. I’ve been watching the trailers for this movie forever and been waiting for so long. I was expecting to be impressed, just by watching the animation and the clever lines from the trailers, but Disney has outdone itself again with this masterpiece!

First of all, the tone of the movie is a little bit different from the previous Disney Princess movies. Moana’s movie seems a little more self-aware, producing gems like:

“You wear a dress and have an animal sidekick, you’re a princess.”

“When you write with a bird, it’s called ‘Tweeting’.”

And let’s not forget the songs! “How far I’ll go” is not only inspiring, it’s amazing! Ali’i has an amazing voice that fits Moana’s character and adds a strong element to her character. The first reprise is interesting, because even though Moana is upbeat and hopeful about the adventure and travel, she actually fails terribly to get past the reef. This leads her to question her decision and debate whether she’ll turn to her responsibilities or turn to where her heart is pointing her.

Moana is easy to identify with, she tries to be responsible and smart, but just keeps going back to being herself. The movie’s message comes across as a mix of ‘be yourself’ and ‘find where you belong’, without being cliche or repetitive. The other characters in the story, Maui, Moana’s Grandmother, her parents, and even Heihei, were awesome and well written. Instead of your typical Disney Parents ( I.E dead or abusive and cruel) Moana’s parents are loving and try to teach Moana as best as any parents can.

Her adventure with Maui takes her across the ocean to face various villains, one of whom is hilariously vain and while not *evil*, he does present a problem because he’s a giant hermit crab whose made his shell from jewels, gold, and Maui’s magical fish hook. Did I mention that the crab has one of the catchiest song/dance numbers in the entire film? I’m pretty sure ‘Shiny’ is going down in history right alongside ‘Under the sea’. Speaking of that song, he also mentions Sebastian at one point after the credits.

Through her adventure, Moana and Maui teach each other valuable lessons about being humble and knowing what you want to do, and what you are able to do. At one point Maui mentions that without his magical fish hook, he’s ‘nothing’. He sacrifices that fish hook during the battle at the end of the movie. Of course, he gets it back…. but I think I’ll end there and not spoil too much for anyone who hasn’t seen it yet.

So, all in all, I’d recommend seeing this movie multiple times. It is simply amazing in it’s writing and animation, and the morals the story teaches are simple and easy to understand. While it is at some times predictable, it shines with it’s own unique form and excellent story-telling.

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“Fantastic Beasts” A review

I went to see ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find them’ with my sisters and mother. This is the first “Harry Potter” film my sister had ever seen and the first one I’ve seen since the ‘Deathly Hallows’ came out in theaters. I wasn’t sure what I was expecting, since the book ‘Fantastic Beasts and where to find them’ was not only very short, it had no plot at all. It was simply the fun guide to the magical creatures and animals that roamed the world that harry potter lived in.

So when the film started, I kept my mind open. I’ll admit now, it started off slow, but I loved every minute of it. The sets and costumes were stunning, and all the world-building that went into it was phenomenal. It’s important that you read the headlines of the newspapers at the beginning of the film, as they cast light on one of the characters in the film who holds an important piece of the wizarding world.

Because I took an oath to put out NO spoilers for the film, I will instead concentrate on the writing and acting of the characters. They were all brilliant and believable, but in all honesty, I must say that the fellow who played ‘Jacob’ really stole the show. His level of expression and vocal fun makes him almost cartoony compared to the stoic and quiet characters that are Newt and the others. Queenie makes me think of Luna Lovegood, not only in her speaking mannerisms, but in her appearance.

The animals are hilarious and believable, with many being inspired by real life creatures such as Rhinos and eagles. Newt Scamander comes across as a British/Wizard Steve Erwin with his interactions with the magical creatures. These include a Thunderbird named Frank. Yes, Frank the Thunderbird, whom Newt is attempting to return to the deserts of Arizona where he belongs.

So, because the ‘Harry Potter’ Fandom is under an oath of general silence, I can’t give away much more without giving away the plot, but let me say give you a hint with a riddle.

 

The foe of a friend

The friend of a foe

Who held death in his hands

and twice let it go?

 

“Trolls” review

I had the fun honor of seeing the movie ‘Trolls’ with my sisters on Sunday when we were having a girls’ day out.

Let me first say this: if you have some sort of seizure disorder, don’t see this movie. This movie is so colorful and bright that it’s almost as if a clown barfed into a box of crayons. The textures and character design are almost cloyingly cute and fun, even the Bergens.

The songs in the movie were top-notch and the way they tied into the film itself was hilarious (with one Troll literally just sitting back with a confused expression and watching everyone else singing and dancing randomly). At one point, there’s a so-called ‘Wham’ line that explains why one character does not sing or dance.

The Bergens are hilarious, while children might be more inclined to love and dote on the colorful Trolls, adults will find the Bergens hilarious and relatable. At one point in the story there’s a message of ‘Be yourself’ with a very Cinderella-esque sub-plot between two of the characters.

When I saw the movie, to be honest, I loved it. The main message of the movie is ‘Try to stay positive and accept your true colors’, basically meaning ‘Be yourself!’. I think the world needs a happy, funny movie to pick itself up with. I’m really, honestly tired of going to movies and having opinions, politics, and motives shoved down my throat. This movie did none of that. It made me and my sisters laugh. There was some humor that went way over the kids’ heads (“What’s sarcasm?” one characters asks. Another says “I think I had one once!”).  The movie hits the golden spot of being appealing to both children and adults alike.

In a time in the world where a lot of people are in a very dark place, I think everyone needs a little happy right now.

So I personally give this movie a rating of 7 stars out of ten. It wasn’t too deep or gritty, but the emotional character arcs and hidden aspects of characters (turns out, one of them is very romantic) that neither me or my sisters were expecting added a lot to the film and how it came across to us and the rest of the audience. It’s a movie I wouldn’t mind seeing again.

 

 

trolls

First Official “Moana” Trailer!

I’m so excited to see this. Disney just released the first official ‘Moana’ trailer to the internet.

Moana stars as the newest Disney Princess and is a skilled navigator who goes on a journey with a legendary Demigod, Maui, in order to save her people. Maui is played by Dwayne Johnson, and Auli’i Cravalho is the voice of Moana. ‘

Here are my thoughts on the trailer:

This looks like it’s going to be good, and I see some references from Hercules in the beginning portion. Maui turning into an eagle was pretty darn cool. Moana looks awesome and her design is just gorgeous, I like the Disney is branching out from traditional princesses by giving their newest princesses various tools and weapons so that they can save themselves, and giving them actual brains (well, except maybe Anna).Merida is my personal favorite of the Disney Princesses, next is Mulan, but I think Moana might take Mulan’s place considering how good this looks.

Angry Birds: A review

Most people are familiar with the phone game franchise the ‘Angry Birds’. It’s popularity seemed to have beaked around 2012, but as of this weekend it seems the interest is back with a gusto.

 

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Photo: Rovio Entertainment

 

The Angry Birds movie has opened in theaters in America to the tune of $39 million dollars, which isn’t bad at all, and is actually very good for the franchise itself. It also has about $94 million worldwide right now, and on a budget of about $80 million that means that they’ve already broke even.  While it has mixed reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, I knew I had to see it for myself. I went with my relatives to the theater today to see it.

Just a disclaimer though: I’m a sucker for kids movies and animation in general. Animation as an art form makes me giddy no matter what movie I’m seeing, so maybe this review will be a bit biased. Although, just for the yolks who haven’t seen it, I won’t give any major spoilers.

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Angry Birds Movie… has good reviews!

It appears the curse on video-game-to-movie adaptions has been broken.

By the Angry Birds?

It might come as a bit of a surprise to some of you guys, it sure surprised me, but the Angry Birds Movie has premiered and is being positively reviewed by critics and viewers. Rovio and Sony came together to work on the project that will be coming to US theaters May 20.

The movie takes us to happy, idyllic Bird Island. A prosperous little village (complete with it’s own Police Department) is home to many happy, healthy, rather prolific birds of every shape and color. They’re all very happy. Except a few. The movie follows fiery Red, Speed demon Chuck, and big-hearted Bomb, as they all have to go through Anger Management. Their lives are interrupted by the arrival of a bunch of little green invaders from a mysterious ship… the pigs.

AngryBirds

According to viewers (I was not one of them, I live too far away for any premieres) the movie is lighthearted, clever (with the Anger-Management class teacher, Matilda, referring to herself as a ‘Free Range Chicken’ being one of the jokes), and teaching a good lesson; sometimes it’s okay to be angry, but you need to know how to handle well. Didn’t we learn this in Inside Out? I guess the folks on Bird Island could use a viewing.

This is great, because I actually want to go see it. At least it’s faring better than that disaster Ratchet and Clank. I didn’t see Ratchet and Clank because the animation in the previews is rather off-putting. It looks like plastic. Can you say ‘Uncanny Valley’? Either way, the animation of the Angry Birds Movie looks beautiful, you can see all the teeny-weeny details of each individual feather on each individual bird. I’m looking forward to seeing this.

Also, on another note. Did you know there’s a Bird Island, Minnesota? Yeah, I didn’t either.

http://birdislandcity.com/wordpress/

The Doctor’s new companion is…

…. Pearl Mackie! She will be playing a girl named Bill, who has the fashion sense of Rose Tyler and apparently Donna’s attitude. The new companion was named on Saturday on the BBC network, with many people cheering on afterwards.

Bill and the Doctor can be seen interacting in the new trailer released by BBC, which shows a bit of Bill’s personality and the contrast between her and the Doctor. In my opinion, Clara was a little bit of a Goody-two-shoes and was too similar to the Doctor in personality (or was that the point?) so having a decent foil would provide more friction to the show. If I had to pick the companion myself I would have chosen Faye Marsay, the lady who played Shona in the Last Christmas special, but Pearl Mackie is good. A companion who isn’t so perfect or flawless would be good for the series.

Bill comes on as the companion to replace Clara Oswold, who left last season after basically being turned immortal and dead at the exact same time. (Long story.)

 

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This also comes after Moffat stepped down as the writer of Doctor Who in January, which was also followed by a lot of cheering. With a new companion and a new writer, the show could be headed in an entirely new, possibly better direction.

‘The Angry Birds Movie’ launches OST, Blake Shelton’s music video — CINEMA BRAVO

Atlantic Records has announced its release of “The Angry Birds Movie (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)” due everywhere on Friday, May 6th. The Columbia Pictures and Rovio Entertainment 3D animated comedy “The Angry Birds Movie” arrives in theatres across the Philippines on May 11th. “The Angry Birds Movie (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)” is available now for […]

via ‘The Angry Birds Movie’ launches OST, Blake Shelton’s music video — CINEMA BRAVO

New “Angry Birds Movie” trailer and thoughts

 

Rovio recently released a brand new international trailer for the “Angry Birds” movie that will be flying into theaters this May.

Something that was bothering me up until now was that there was something vaguely familiar about the movie style. Goofy, occasionally gross humor? Check. An outcast? Check. Spazzed out sidekick? Check. Protagonist whose considered ugly by his peers? Check.

This movie is starting to remind me of Shrek.

Either way, the trailer looks awesome and the little girl with the dinosaur is pretty cool. Also, Mighty Eagle looks awesome.

 

VIDEO: New “Angry Birds Movie” Trailer

Rovio has taken it’s first peck at the movie industry with it’s upcoming movie “The Angry Birds Movie”.

The film takes us to an Island paradise filled with happy, naive birds. Except for a few. Fiery-tempered Red (Jason Sudeikis), Whirlwind Chuck (Josh Gad), and Bomb (Danny McBride) star in this movie flying to theaters May 20, 2016. The islanders are visited by the little green pigs famous to the game and the story takes off from there. Red doesn’t trust the pigs (and seems to be one of the few birds on that island with a lick of common sense) and is intent to figure out what they’re up to.

On another note, I can relate to Red easily. We’re both Ill-tempered redheads with impressive eyebrows.

The movie looks like it’ll be fun, so I’ll make sure to see this in theaters when it’s out. Anne and Maria certainly seem to be looking forward to it and won’t stop cackling about the scene with Mighty Eagle’s “Lake of Wisdom”. I don’t usually laugh at toilet humor, but that ending was pretty freaking hilarious.