Friday, August 5, 2016

Suicide Squad

What a strange year this has been for movies. Somehow DC has simultaneously been on a hot streak in terms of the quality of their product, but also on a bizarre down slope when it comes to the critical reception of their films. Luckily, both movies will make enough money that it doesn't make any difference. The fan reaction has been much kinder than the questionable critical consensus, and it seems that audiences are starting to take the Rotten Tomatoes score less and less seriously these days... which is how it should be. Personally, I've been really excited for this film ever since it was announced, and particularly after Batman v Superman I was desperate for anything DC related. With a very promising cast and a tremendous marketing campaign, I had a feeling this might take a lot of people by surprise.

Jason Bourne

Of all the franchise movies coming out this summer, this is definitely the one I was least convinced would actually happen. For years now we've been hearing about how Matt Damon and director Paul Greengrass have been trying to work out a story for the 4th film in the Bourne series, since apparently neither would return without the other. Even one of my favorite screenwriters, Jonathan Nolan, did a pass on a potential story and wasn't able to come up with anything he was satisfied with. So when it was finally announced that the pair was reuniting for a sequel to Bourne Ultimatum, I couldn't have been more excited. One day I'll have to review the Bourne series, but as I stated in my review of The Bourne Legacy, I am a huge fan of this franchise. With a great deal of optimism (tempered slightly by some mixed early reviews), I went into my screening last week anxious to see what the team had come up with over the last nine years.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Star Trek Beyond

After loving the first two films in this rebooted Star Trek universe (or the Kelvin-verse, as I hear it's called), I was surprisingly not that excited about this movie. A lot of that has to do with the really abysmal trailer that was released earlier this year featuring the Beastie Boys' "Sabotage" and making it seem like another installment of the Fast and the Furious franchise with the cast of Star Trek in the lead roles. As we'll get into, there's a reason why that song was played over that first trailer, though I'm not sure that justifies its inclusion... Once the positive reviews started rolling in, however, I had a renewed optimism that Beyond could live up the first two films, despite the departure of J.J. Abrams from his directorial duties.

Independence Day: Resurgence

I was a HUGE fan of the original Independence Day as a kid, and so even with full awareness of the absence of Will Smith from this cast, I still couldn't stop myself from being excited to see Independence Day: Resurgence. The trailers looked pretty good, promising the return of Jeff Goldblum while playing on the nostalgia of President Whitmore's now iconic speech to perfection. The space battles and worldwide destruction looked pretty incredible as well, so I went into my viewing with the slightest glimmer of hope, regardless of the already scathing reviews that had shown up the day before its release.