Movie Review: The Maze Runner: Death Cure (2018)

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Plot: Young hero Thomas embarks on a mission to find a cure for a deadly disease known as the “Flare”.

Contains minor spoilers

I have experienced a rather good start to the year with new releases. I am still not over the wonderful The Greatest Showman (2018), and I am still listening to its’ soundtrack every single day. I can’t wait to purchase the DVD and show it to everyone I know, so that they too can be as happy as I. It also provided a pitfall for The Death Cure – could anything impress me after I was so ridiculously happy?

Well, The Death Cure didn’t make me as happy (two tonally different films as there ever was), but it did entertain me. The opening sequence, the lead culprit in the massive time delay of the film when Dylan O’Brien was seriously injured on set, is exciting and intense. I also really appreciate a film where the main characters can actually shoot and is not just randomly shooting into thin air – all the actors can be applauded for holding a gun in a manner that shows they’ve had some training.

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The relationship between Thomas (O’Brien) and Newt (Thomas Brodie-Sangster), is still as tight as ever. They are in this together, and the two actors themselves share a great chemistry on set. I like Newt, he’s such a sarcastic character full of pithy remarks. I still absolutely loathe Theresa – who doesn’t, and even her final attempts at redemption couldn’t convince me to find actual time for her. He doesn’t deserve Thomas or his compassion, and I completed related to my fellow movie goer when he passionately yelled “Can this bitch just die?!” in cinema – although good sir, do not refer to women as bitches, please.

I will perhaps always hate Aiden Gillen (perhaps unfairly). He also plays a devious bastard in The Death Cure, and this does not help him in terms of affection. He is able to play a weak man really well. He meets his fate in The Death Cure in a much more brutal and enjoyable fashion than in Game of Thrones.

The film has a solid progression, and although it did start to feel long I wasn’t terrible irritated by that. There was a stage at about halfway through the film where I wondered how on earth they were planning to wrap things up in the time they had left, but they managed.

Granted that I really didn’t like the second one (I am still not sure what went on there), this film turned out remarkably well. The Death Cure is not perfect – I felt that half of the female stars had no acting power, and they are, as always, very underrepresented. I always enjoy a dystopian setting that turns out to be some clinical trial drama – that is essentially what Divergent and The Maze Runner boils down to – what ethical values are governments willing to forsake of their people when faced with a massive viral disaster? This is my food man. However, it should be noted that the rights of a patient will never be compromised for the advancement of science, thank you very much.

Overall, The Death Cure did just fine as my second film for this year. That guy with the hollowed out cheeks and funky attitude was proper badass and had an epic moment or two. Eyebrows returning – he looks like he waxed his eyebrows, and I still think it must be a challenged to be permanently surprised. I’ve never read these books, so I can’t compare it to the source material, but as a dystopian film it works well and rounds of the series just fine.

Rating: 7/10

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Movies 2016: Worst to Best

The year 2016 will be known for a number of things – an inordinate amount of celebrity deaths and an equally inordinate amount of lackluster movies. Are these two correlated? I’m not convinced its’ not. Anyway, here is my list of movies I watched this year that was released in 2016. It’s not been a good one.

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Number 19: Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice 6/10

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Number 18: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find them 6/10

Number 17: Before You 6/10

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Number 16: The Choice 6.5/10

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Number 15: How to be single 6.5/10

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Number 14: The 5th Wave 7/10

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Number 13: SUICIDE SQUAD 7/10

Number 12: Rogue One: 7/10

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Number 11: The Huntsman: Winter’s War 7/10

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Number 10: Legend of Tarzan 7.5/10

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Number 9: Finding Dory 7.5/10

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Number 8: Captain America: Civil War: 7.5/10

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Number 7: Zootopia 8/10

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Number 6: The Jungle Book 8/10

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Number 5: 10 Cloverfield lane 8/10

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Number 4: Dr. Strange 8/10

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Number 3: Deadpool (8/10)

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Number 2: Bridget Jones’ Baby: 8.5/10

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Number 1: Pride and Prejudice vs. Zombies 8.5/10

Movie Review: Scorch Trials (2015)

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Plot: After having escaped the Maze, the Gladers now face a new set of challenges on the open roads of a desolate landscape filled with unimaginable obstacles.

Thoughts:

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Littlefinger. I somehow know that he’s going to be a villain. No hope that he has moral fiber. Aiden Gillen wasn’t the most satisfying villain. There is something about polo necks that lacks the essence of masterminded evil, and more importantly, Gillen seems unconvinced about his role.

Security doors in Scorch Trials are opened by mere handles. Seems very secure.

The scene where they are relinquishing their only weapon to their friend that is becoming a zombie – Can we just talk about how stupid this is? Shoot the guy, he’s indicated that he wants to die, and take your weapon. You know, to protect yourself.

The best thing about this film is that they found water in the very first building they entered.

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Let’s just quickly focus on these buildings – why are they looking like that? I need to know how buildings can be utterly destroyed by the sun. Windows are out, buildings have fallen over each other. There wasn’t a specific war, earthquake or tornado. Those are the things I’d think would lead to buildings being completely destroyed.

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This villain woman. Does she think she’s Gandalf the White?

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This Teresa chick. She’s irritating AF with her judgy little face. Her biggest issue is that she lost her mother due to zombitis. Well, sorry, but now every teenager must give up their enzymes??

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The new girl is at least better than Teresa. She obviously has more moral fiber than Teresa, and all in all I’d like her more to end up with beautiful Thomas. I’m appreciative that we finally have a girl in this movie that isn’t completely repulsive or evil.

Thomas Brodie-Sangster – I like him. He does a good job with being a leader and a voice of reason.

So here’s my issue with the whole Scorched world – why am I seeing green trees in this scene?

New definition for Dystopia: A story perpetuating the myth that teenagers matter.

Rating: 6/10

Both movies so far have been really lopsided. The first one is arguably better, but I am still not all that sure what the hell is going on. I think reading the books would help, but I’ve heard from reputable sources that I’d pull my hair out with the writing that is going on in there. Apparently Scorch Trials are also one of those “incredibly loosely based” adaptions, so reading the books won’t help all that much. I do know now that Thomas is planning to fetch Asian Zac Efron and save his life. And hopefully pop Teresa and Gandalf while he’s at it.

Movie Review: The Jungle Book (2016)

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Plot: The man-cub Mowgli flees the jungle after a threat from the tiger Shere Khan. Guided by Bagheera the panther and the bear Baloo, Mowgli embarks on a journey of self-discovery, though he also meets creatures who don’t have his best interests at heart.

Rating: 8/10

This is firstly the most reluctant 8/10 I’ve ever given. I wanted to go watch Captain America, but that really couldn’t happen as my mom just isn’t a superhero kind of girl and the whole point of the outing was treating her. So I sulked a little bit about not seeing the Cap – I also have the worst flu in existence and that is definitely contributing, but it all worked out well in the end. – and as you all know I’ve since seen Captain America: Civil War and reviewed it here.

2016 had a slow start to movies, but it is making progress in becoming a good here. The Jungle Book is another favourable entrance, and Jon Favreau truly did a phenomenal job. The Jungle Book looks so good – the forest is beautiful, the descriptions and storytelling is enthralling. It is obviously a great job by Disney – their new releases of old stories are gorgeous so far. It must have been a risky undertaking having a novice child as your only human presence on screen, but it paid off in the end. Despite having a few scenes where the child isn’t all that convincing, he did a great job and he certainly looks like Mowgli.

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I can’t say too much about the film – the plot is no secret and remains close to the original material. As was done with the less impressive Cinderella last year, The Jungle Book is the exact same as its animation. In this case it works very well. The CGI is mind blowing, the voice casting is great (Scarlett Johannson is perhaps the best as Kaa) and the songs are as addictive as when they first came out. The Jungle Book is a feast on the eyes and is worth the ticket – and definitely the 3D!

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