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Thursday, April 30

Haiku Revieu | Furious 7

Thursday, April 30
Furious 7

Statham fights the Rock
Statham fights Vin Diesel, twice
Goodbye Paul Walker

Deckard Shaw seeks revenge against Dominic Toretto and his family for his comatose brother.

WARNING: Possible spoilers ahead.

Only a couple of weeks late on this one!

It's no secret that I love the Fast & Furious franchise. (Yes, even Tokyo Drift, although love might be a little strong in its case.) And I've been excited to watch Furious 7, since seeing the end of Fast & Furious 6—which promised even more ridiculous action with the addition of Jason Statham.

But then, Paul Walker died, and it made me want premiere day to come a little slower. Paul was a driving force behind the franchise, and I was dreading seeing his "last ride."

That said, when the day did come, I was super excited. And the movie did not disappoint. It's full of over-the-top action sequences, laws-of-physics-defying fight scenes, and a host of great one-liners. As I suspected, Jason Statham is an amazing addition to an already stellar cast. I laughed, and I laughed.

And then, at the end, I cried. I won't say why, so at to not spoil it for those who haven't seen it, but it's a fitting tribute to Paul. Sad, but good, if that makes sense?

The movie also does a great job of tying Tokyo Drift, previously the outlier of the series, into the rest of the series. (If you haven't watched any of the movies, I'd suggest watching them in this order: 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 3, 7.) But it's a little laughable, and not in a good way, seeing a scene with Lucas Black from Tokyo Drift juxtaposed with one of him a decade later that viewers are supposed to believe happened mere hours apart.

If you're a fan of the franchise, or just really like action movies, this is a film you definitely need to see.

Check it out:

Wednesday, April 29

Haiku Revieu | Insurgent

Wednesday, April 29

Divergent: Part 2
Tris is now an action star
What's with the damn box

Beatrice Prior must confront her inner demons and continue her fight against a powerful alliance which threatens to tear her society apart with the help from others on her side.

WARNING: Possible spoilers ahead.

I'm not as late with this review as the other two I posted earlier this week—only about a month and a half after seeing it rather than more than two. This movie is still in some theaters!

To be honest, I didn't really care to see this movie in theaters. I liked Divergent, the first movie in this series, well enough—I gave it ***1/2 stars in my review—but I liked Divergent, the book, much more than the others in the series, so I figured the movies would go downhill equally. I was sort of right in that assumption; Insurgent is pretty ridiculous, and, for the most part, not in a good way.

I saw the movie with ladies from my book club, and thank goodness they were there, because I would have felt bad laughing at some of the supposedly more serious moments if no one else was. These movies just try so hard to be something they're not, and even with the changes between the film and the book, which, I'm sure, were meant to make this more appealing to the movie-going masses, there's something missing.

Even the great actors in the movie—Maggie Q, Kate Winslet, Octavia Spencer—had little to work with. Shailene Woodley's Tris is just plain terrible, and the various states of her hairdo throughout the movie are massively distracting. Miles Teller's sassy Peter is a shining light, but his quips only do so much.

Then there's the end of the movie, which feels oddly final. How there are going to be two more movies in this franchise, I do not understand.

If you're a series completist, by all means check this one out. It's good for a laugh, at least!

Check it out:

Tuesday, April 28

Haiku Revieu | What We Do in the Shadows

Tuesday, April 28
What We Do in the Shadows

Silly but lacking
Vampires in modern times
Werewolves, not swear-wolves

Viago, Deacon, and Vladislav are vampires who are finding that modern life has them struggling with the mundane—like paying rent, keeping up with the chore wheel, trying to get into nightclubs, and overcoming flatmate conflicts.

WARNING: Possible spoilers ahead.

This review is very late—it's been about two months since I saw this movie. But it might help you decide if you want to watch it when it becomes available on demand/on Netflix/at a Redbox?

Although I loved the premise of this movie—A bunch of hapless vampires dealing with the modern world? Yes, please!—the actual movie left a lot to be desired. Many of the best jokes of the movie are in the trailer (heads up, those of you who were about to watch it below), and even they aren't all that funny. The humor is similar to that of Flight of the Concords, and fans of that show will recognize quite a few people in the film, but it never quite made me laugh more than a chuckle. And if you know me, I laugh loud and freely when I find something amusing.

That said, I really enjoyed the sets and some of the silly special effects. Maybe I just wasn't in the right mindset for this kind of humor?

I'd recommend adding this to your Netflix queue—I wouldn't spend money on it (again)—if you're a FotC fan.

Check it out:

Monday, April 27

Haiku Revieu | Kingsman: The Secret Service

Monday, April 27
Kingsman: The Secret Service

Comic book James Bond
Darcy is an action star
So many fun suits

A spy organization recruits an unrefined, but promising street kid into the agency's ultra-competitive training program, just as a global threat emerges from a twisted tech genius.

WARNING: Possible spoilers ahead.

This review is very late—two months to the day that I actually saw this movie. But it might help you decide if you want to watch it when it becomes available on demand/on Netflix/at a Redbox?

I was excited to see this movie before it came out, thanks in part to the combination of Colin Firth and Matthew Vaughn (who's had a hand in movies such as X-Men: First Class and X-Men: Days of Future Past). Colin is, well, Colin—how can you not love the man who's played roles such as Mr. Darcy, Mark Darcy and Jaime (Love Actually)—and Matthew Vaughn has a great track record of doing comics justice on the big screen.  Also: How has Colin Firth never been in an action movie? He was absolutely delightful as the James Bond-ish Harry Hart. Taron Edgerton, who plays the movie's "unrefined, but promising street kid" recruit, also does a fabulous job. I see big things in his future.

I've never read the comics that this movie is based on, but the idea of a secret British government agency who use fancy gadgets and are impeccably trained is a fun one, if not completely unique. But this isn't your typical James Bond story; it's much less serious and much more ridiculous—particularly the fight scenes. As someone who gets a huge kick out of over-the-top action scenes, however, the ridiculousness is a major pro rather than a con.

There's one major flaw to the movie that left a bit of a bad taste in my mouth, and that's an uncomfortable sexual encounter that happens near the end. I'm sure it was meant as an edgy nod to the idea of Bond Girls, but it just seemed crass and out of place in an otherwise fun movie.

Still, I'd recommend Kingsman to anyone who enjoys comic adaptations/action movies. Just don't bring the (young) kids.

Check it out:

Tuesday, April 21

Nerd News | Jurassic World and Fantastic Four trailers + Star Wars: Rogue One details

Tuesday, April 21

I still have some reservations about this reboot, but I have to admit that this trailer is pretty dang awesome.


Miles Teller is one of those guys who often plays the comedic relief, so it'll be interesting to see him in a leading man role. (No, I haven't seen Whiplash.)

This trailer is also great.


But as much as I love the Jurassic Park movies, the fact that no one in these movies takes a look at the past and thinks, "maybe we shouldn't mess with dinosaurs" has my common sense screaming for mercy. It's a good thing my common sense has a mute button (see also: Fast and Furious).

New information has been released about the first stand-alone Star Wars movie in the new canon universe—Star Wars: Rogue One. (Thanks for the heads up, Rebecca!)

Up until now, details around the first entry in the Anthology Series, Gareth Edwards’ Rogue One, have been minimal. Edwards revealed that the film will revolve around a rogue band of resistance fighters who unite for a daring mission to steal the Death Star plans and bring new hope to the galaxy. “I couldn’t sit in a cinema and know that someone else made this film,” Edwards said in the panel. Fans were treated to concept art and a brief video that caused a packed house to erupt. (via)

Felicity Jones, the only cast member yet to be revealed, "will play a soldier in the Rebellion." (via)

Although I'm still a little put out about the "erasure" of the extended universe that happened when Disney bought Star Wars, I'm definitely excited for more Star Wars movies, both involving the core characters we know and love and those—I'm assuming—we'll grow to love after we get to know them.

ICYMI: A new Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer was released last week.

Thursday, April 16

Nerd News | Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer #2

Thursday, April 16

The Internet (at least the corner of it that I follow on Twitter) is currently going insane. And I can't blame them.

I—no joke—started crying at the end <SPOILER>when Han and Chewie showed up</SPOILER>. I CANNOT EVEN.

Tuesday, April 14

SQUEE | Avengers Family Feud

Tuesday, April 14

I now have so much more* respect for Joss Whedon. How any of these ridiculous(ly awesome) people get any real work done, ever, is beyond me.

*I already had a ton, natch.

Sunday, April 5

Happy First Contact Day!

Sunday, April 5

P.S.—Happy Easter, too!

Wednesday, April 1

'Ello, April

Wednesday, April 1

The 2015 Man Calendar:

Mr. April: Michael Fassbender
Mr. March: Jensen Ackles
Mr. February: Tom Hiddleston
Mr. January: Eoin Macken

Download this page of the 2015 Man Calendar for personal use by clicking on the image; it will open in a new window. Right/control click to save it. Then print the page on letter-size cardstock, and trim it to 6"x9".