Written by: Zack Snyder & Steve Shibuya
Directed by: Zack Snyder
Starring: Emily Browning, Abbie Cornish, Jena Malone, Vanessa Hudgens, Jamie Chung, Carla Gugino, Oscar Isaac, Scott Glenn & Jon Hamm
Review: Steampunk Zombie Nazis. That’s really all they needed to hook me…but add in dragons, giant samurai, robot assassins, nukes, an orc-a-pult, and hot girls in leather with machine guns and katanas destroying it all, and it’s almost superfluous. I’m not saying I didn’t appreciate the extras, because I certainly did. The eye candy alone makes the movie worth it. Add in Scott Glenn as a wise old sage, and you’ve got a winner. Also, Steampunk Zombie Nazis!
Time: 22 seconds
Written by: Todd Farmer & Patrick Lussier
Directed by: Patrick Lussier
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Amber Heard, William Fichtner, Billy Burke, David Morse
Review: The latest installment of The Nicolas Cage Crazy Eyes Chronicles arrives with some fancy 3D effects–that only pay off once or twice–and a surprisingly well-built cast. Cage’s demonic wrath is okay, I guess, but it pales in comparison to Fichtner’s performance as Satan’s accountant, and Heard’s psycho bitch rendition of Daisy Duke. Not to mention a five-barreled shotgun called the Godkiller. Gotta love it.
Time: 20 seconds
Written by: Jeremy Brock, based on the novel by Rosemary Sutcliff
Directed by: Kevin Macdonald
Starring: Channing Tatum, Jamie Bell, Donald Sutherland, Mark Strong
Review: As much as I enjoy Roman-style bloodshed, this one bored me. When the face-stabbing and limb-hacking was actually on screen, it was quite enjoyable. But those few and far between sequences were interluded with far too many sitting-around-a-fire and riding-horses-through-the-flowing-hills sequences. And the ending was far too much like a buddy cop movie. Now I want to see an actual buddy cop movie set in ancient Rome.
Time: 20 seconds
Written by: Christopher Murphey, based on a story by Robert Mark Kamen
Directed by: Harald Zwart
Starring: Jaden Smith, Jackie Chan, Taraji P. Henson, Rongguang Yu, Zhenwei Wang
Review: As usual, remakes make us wary. In this case, the original is…what it is. Although it’s riddled with cheese, it is a classic. The question becomes whether the original is improved upon by the addition of Jackie Chan, and the removal of the utterly ridiculous crane stance…or is it ruined by the addition of Lady Gaga? Despite its PG rating, it was very entertaining. Also: no crane stance. Another plus.
Time: 19 seconds Read More
Written by: Jane Goldman & Matthew Vaughn, based on the comic book by Mark Millar and John Romita Jr.
Directed by: Matthew Vaughn
Starring: Aaron Johnson, ChloÃ« Grace Moretz, Mark Strong, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Nicolas Cage
Review: This movie in and of itself was funny, and delivered on the character-driven attempt to evoke every kind of emotion among the audience members (those of us who feel feelings, anyway). And then the reason I saw it. The movie had to be cut three times in order to achieve an R rating, so I’m anxiously awaiting the director’s cut that will deliver more of the balls-out action sequences of an eleven-year-old girl kicking the unholy shit out of anyone she sees. It’s some of the craziest fight choreography I’ve ever seen. And I’m a Tony Jaa fan, so that says a lot.
Time: 20 seconds
Written by: Gary Whitta
Directed by: The Brothers Hughes
Starring: Denzel Washington, Gary Oldman, Mila Kunis, Jennifer Beals, Ray Stevenson
Review: Mix together Mad Max and Leon, then form it into a holy arrow of some kind, and fire it through the testicles of a would-be rapist, and this is what you get. It’s good to see Oldman return to his psychotic bad guy role, which he does very well, and even better to see Denzel Washington flip out and kill tons of dudes.
Time: 14 seconds
Written by: Michael Robert Johnson, Anthony Peckham & Simon Kinberg, based on a story by Johnson & Lionel Wigram, based on characters created by Arthur Conan Doyle
Directed by: Guy Ritchie
Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Mark Strong, Rachel McAdams, Eddie Marsan
Review: After the putrid retch that was Revolver, it’s good to see that Guy Ritchie is back making them awesome. I’d waited for this movie for a long time, and I’m happy to report that it did not disappoint. The kicksplode was a special type of Victorian brand…and extensive to boot. Also: Doilies!
Time: 13 seconds
Written by: Stuart Beattie, David Elliot, Paul Lovett, and Michael Gordon
Directed by: Stephen Sommers
Starring: Ray Park, Marlon Wayans, Channing Tatum, Dennis Quaid, Rachel Nichols, Byung-Hun Lee, SaÃ¯d Taghmaoui, Joseph-Gordon Levitt, Christopher Eccleston, Sienna Miller, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Arnold Vosloo, Jonathan Pryce
Review: Casting Ray Park as Snake Eyes earned them a lot of leeway. I was even willing to forgive the fact that they put lips on his mask. It’s the ninja equivalent of Bat-Nipples. But they countered that with a good deal of brilliant homage, as well as enough kicksplode to entertain me for the two hours needed. Even if they twisted a fond childhood memory a bit (Accelerator Suits…? The hell?), the action made it a fun movie. Not a great movie by any means, mind you, but a fun one.
Time: 21 seconds
Written by: Ehren Kruger, Roberto Orci, and Alex Kurtzman
Directed by: Michael Bay
Starring: Shia LaBeouf, Megan Fox, Josh Duhamel, Tyrese Gibson, John Turturro, Ramon Rodriguez, Peter Cullen, Hugo Weaving
Review: The only problem I had with the first one of these was that it tended to have things on the screen that weren’t giant robots fighting other giant robots. So that needed fixing. And so it was! This time around, if you’re not seeing a big bot tear another’s face off (seriously, this is done quite a bit), then you’re probably instead focused on some of Megan Fox’s various parts. Which is acceptable. You can shut your brain down for this one. Shut it down hard.
Time: 21 seconds
Written by: Akiva Goldsman and David Koepp, based on the novel by Dan Brown
Directed by: Ron Howard
Starring: Tom Hanks, Ayelet Zurer, Ewan McGregor, Stellan SkarsgÃ¥rd, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Pierfrancisco Favino
Review: Well, they fixed the hair. And that’s good. But they did well with the rest of it as well, and that’s unexpected. Instead of an overhyped dissapointment, this one seems to be the unholy union of National Treasure with the first movie. Which occured in a meat grinder. That was on fire.
Also, Anti-Matter! Yay!
Time: 13 seconds