Friday, January 11, 2019


When I was a little kid I enjoyed watching Superfriends on Saturday morning. For some reason out of all the cool heroes that made up the Hall of Justice, I seemed to like Aquaman the most. I'm not sure
why since I dislike oceans and fish and have never liked being in water. Anyway my idea of Aquaman has always been a yellow haired dude with green and orange water suit. As you can imagine I was a little surprised when Aquaman made his debut in Justice League and he looked like a member of a biker gang. I tried to roll with it but I think Arthur Curry doth protest too much with the overblown tough guy attitude and heavy drinking. We get it, you are a cool rebel who doesn't want to be a super hero.

This week I went with my son to see Aquaman. I saw it had received pretty good reviews and I was wanting it to be good and was hoping DC was on an upswing with one of their movies. I felt the movie started pretty weak. The scene where Black Mantis and his dad show up had some of the worst cliches and bad writing I've ever seen in a movie. When Aquaman makes his first appearance it was almost laughable. He'd say some smart ass comment and flip his hair back in dramatic fashion and then an electric guitar would play a riff as he looked into the camera. Seriously?

The movie got a little better as the story developed but I had a hard time getting into it. Some of the special effects were off the chart amazing while others were pretty lackluster. I think Jason Momoa is a cool guy but his character just tries to hard. Amber Heard was a pretty face with her dramatic red hair but I didn't think either lead was very convincing and they didn't have any chemistry. Willem Dafoe, Nicole Kidman, and Temuera Morrison had the best performances but their screen time was limited. I found myself looking at my watch half way through the movie and that's not a good sign for an action movie. I think I actually liked the recent Superman movies more than Aquaman.

The music was also very odd. Some times it was a dramatic score but then there were scenes that switched to a synthesizer and it sounded like it was trying to be Daft Punk in Tron. I did like some of the underwater effects and really liked the scene when he got the green and gold Aquaman suit towards the end of the movie but overall I just felt like it was lacking in substance, script, development, and acting. I wanted to like Aquaman more but I can only give it 6.3 stars.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle

A couple years ago I saw The Jungle Book and really enjoyed it. I thought Jon Favreau did a great job directing it and felt it was an enjoyable family film. I was surprised to see another rival version of the story come out entitled Mowgli so soon afterwards. I was even more surprised when I realized it was being released directly on Netflix.

Mowgli was directed by Andy Serkis. He is also the voice of Baloo. Like the prior movie from 2016, this is also a live action version as opposed to animation but it has a darker and more intense feel to it. There is no breaking into song in this version and very few cute or funny moments so it's less of a kid's film since it holds closer to Rudyard Kipling's book.

Just like the prior movie, this one also has a stellar cast including Christian Bale, Benedict Cumberbatch, Cate Blanchet, Andy Serkis, Naomie Harris, and others.

One thing that I really liked about this version was the attention to some small details that brought more realism. Things like Mowgli being filthy, the scars from injuries, etc. I had a hard time deciding which version I thought had better CGI. I liked some aspects of each film more but overall I'd have to give Mowgli a slightly higher score. I was shocked to see that it had lower scores on IMDB than The Jungle Book. 

I give Mowgli 7.6 stars. 

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