Archive | February 2020

Mortal Kombat review

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Friday Roundabout 2-21-20

By: Justin Hopkins

Hello, and welcome to this weeks Roundabout. Where we go back through the week and give my opinion on some of the things that occurred throughout the past week, and this weeks has given us more than enough to pick through. So, let’s dive right in with some Baseball news.. that doesn’t revolve around the Astros, but a more personal team, The Pittsburgh Pirates.

It’s very difficult to be a Baseball fan in Pittsburgh. A team that looks at a growing team with 98 win season and think, Lets rebuild. A lot of times, you got to go in and just try and enjoy the fact you are watching the game, and less about the team. It’s one thing to think that as a fan, but when a recently signed Center Fielder is saying it, it makes it that much harder. When Jarrod Dyson was asked about being apart of the Pirates organization, he went on about how he has to take the good with the bad, and there was nowhere else to go and play. Now, a lot of people got on Baker Mayfield and how over confident he was about the Browns the past season, but as a fan of a lackluster team. Would love to go in with some big talk and false hope from the players. Cause all this interview did, was make it that much more depressing, with my only hope, that he’ll play hard to better his odds on being traded. No wonder why Pittsburgh ranked at last, with a zero percent hype for this season.

On to some potential better news. According to the great Bruce Campbell, there are a few Evil Dead Movies in the works, with one potentially set to start shooting this year. I would love to see Jane Levy return as Mia, but it sounds more like they are going into a completely new direction, and no, it does not sound like Ash will be involved. Which, I am fine with. Bruce has given us a ton of great memories, and in his words, it’s time for another idiot to try and save the world, and there are other stories to tell, and I for one, am looking forward to a new adventure in this world.

Borderlands is a game that has been sitting in my Playstation Library for quite some time now. The promise that next week I am going to start playing made over and over again. With the news that Eli Roth has been brought in and filming to begin by the end of the year though. May force me to follow through with actually playing. WIth Video Game Movies seeming to come more and more. With Sonic and Detective Pikachu doing so well. Mortal Kombat due out in January, Tomb Raider 2 in the works, and Uncharted trying to get out of the starting gate. Eli has a chance to make Borderlands a fun ride. Just hope that he learns from the pitfalls and brings the spirit of the game to life.

With a new movie and a continuation potentially on the horizon. Where else can we go, but to two remakes coming to us from HBO Max. Both Police Academy and Oceans being in the works. Police Academy has a better chance of succeeding out of the two, if they let it be raunchy and have fun with it. Oceans on the other hand, is going to have a much harder time. I don’t normally care about studios doing remakes. If someone has a better idea for an idea, let them run with it and see how well they do, but this will be remake number 4 for the franchise. Third in twenty some odd years, and the last one didn’t fare so well. I do wish them luck and hope they got a good script. Cause they will need it.

In sad news, the world lost a great entertainer in Ja’net DuBois. I grew up in a house that always played classic TV shows such as Good Times and have seen her quite a few times, and always sad to see a true Pioneer pass away. Contributing heavily to African American Actress breaking out in Hollywood. Passing away in her sleep at the age of 74. Our thoughts and positive energy goes out to the DuBois family in their time of mourning.

#NoMoreSpoilersInTrailers is still in effect for more than one trailers, but there were a couple first trailers going around that you should check out. The movie Run looks particularly good and Castlevania Season 3 has me hyped for the next installment in the excellent series. If you haven’t seen them, I do suggest giving them a watch.

And that brings us to the end of this week’s Roundabout. As always, I hope you enjoyed and…

Thank you for reading.

XFL: Review so far!

By Paul Anthony

Sport leagues that we know like NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA. Have been around for a very long time and have earn the right to be at the top and then those leagues have minor leagues to groom their young talent. Let’s look at the NFL with 32 teams and each team has 53 men that makes a total of nearly 1700 players not counting practice squad. Now we know there are clearly more people who want to play pro football when they leave college either through being drafted or graduation. Look at how big the NCAA football system really is. It’s not fair to say those who don’t make it isn’t that good enough to make it, the sad point is there isn’t enough room for everyone to make it. There has only been one other true football league and that is the AFL or Arena Football league. Last year we had the AAF which folded midway through the season and left many players without a job. At This point we knew the XFL would be starting the following year, Which gave everyone hope or at least I thought so. XFL was around once before back in 2001 but folded just after one season. 19 years later they came back but will they last more than one season and will they grow?

I wanted to wait review the season after week 2 because the second week of these new football leagues are very important because now the hype is over, things are settled down and the season is in full swing. There is no doubt AAF folded because it ran out of money and we see the AFL teams fold as well because the league has shrunk but not folded. XFL is different though and that is because they have a little more money to work with and they have been drawing decent crowds which is averaging around 15000 per game and the ratings are around 1 million per game. these numbers sound low but things take time. With more money to spend and not spending like crazy which the average player makes 1000 dollars at the lowest each week and up to 2700 for winners with a salary cap of 4 million for each team it’s something the league can afford and I do hope they give us a second season.

Ratings are important and even at 1 million per average it’s still doing better than some tv shows that networks could use to replace it. Now If the ratings dip below a certain number then it could spell doom for the league. America loves football, we see that football in any market thrives. Just look now Las Vegas has a football team and a hockey team. XFL needs to use a good 5 year plan then see what happens, which I hope they can afford it and maybe even consider playing within the NFL season when people are craving Football more at. At this point XFL is doing good for being a baby league but they will need to grow but for now let’s enjoy more Football!

Box Office Rundown 2/17/2020

By Paul Anthony

Welcome to this holiday weekend edition of Box Office Rundown and the first to feature Sonic as the number 1 movie. Now I am sure Sonic will be repeating it’s success next weekend as well. Sonic may have taken the number 1 spot but no one thought it would run away from the pack like it did. Usually when a movie gets delayed it never a good thing but in this case it turned out to be a great thing. Birds of prey came in a at distant number 2. Sonic wasn’t the only film to debut, we had The Photograph and Fantasy Island debut as well as Downhill. I didn’t think much of Downhill or the Photograph but I thought Fantasy Island would do a little better than it did. Sure it came in at number 3 but this year hasn’t been kind so far to horror films which is bad news for Brahms: the Boy 2 because that film has no hype around it. Now this upcoming week we have Harrison Ford’s movie The Call of The Wild on top of The Boy 2, once again we will be having an revolving top ten but here is the current top ten.

  1. Sonic The Hedgehog, 57 million
  2. Birds Of Prey, 17.115 million
  3.  Fantasy Island, 12.4 million
  4.  The Photograph, 12.270 million
  5.  Bad Boys For Life, 11.305 million
  6.  1917, 8.090 million
  7.  Jumanji: The Next Level, 5.7 million
  8.  Parasite, 5.500 million
  9.  Dolittle, 5.050 million
  10.  Downhill, 4.671 Million

Now Sonic was no doubt the winner but here are the losers, Dolittle and The Gentlemen dropped 5 spots with The Gentlemen falling out of the top ten. Now here are my predictions

  1. Sonic The Hedgehog
  2. The Call of the Wild
  3. Birds Of Prey
  4. Brahms: the Boy 2
  5. Fantasy Island
  6. The Photograph
  7.  Bad Boys For Life
  8.  1917
  9.  Jumanji: The Next Level
  10.  Dolittle

Sequel Saturday Presents Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest

By Paul Anthony

Recently Johnny Depp has been in the media’s eye for abusing Amber heard well that is what she claims but then a tape got recent and it was Amber who was the abusing luckily the truth came out and cleared Johnny’s name. So With that being said I decided it was time to review a Johnny Depp movie and then I decided on Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest. Here is the run down, Dead Man’s Chest is a direct sequel to the first film which is The Curse of the Black Pearl, which came out in 2003 and grossed over 650 million dollars from a budget of 140 million. Which back then was a pretty good amount, by today’s standards that would be the low point where a movie should be at. Nevertheless a sequel was coming. Three years later we got Dead Man’s chest. Like always the budget got larger it went from 140 million to 225 million which is an increase of 85 million, did it pay off for them in the end? Well it sure did  because it grossed over a billion dollars and ended up becoming the highest grossing film of the series only the fourth film came close to it. it’s one thing to make a lot of money but another to live up to the film so the question is did?

The film starts with Will and Elizabeth wedding which comes to an halt when they get arrested for allowing Jack to escape at the end of first film. At this point I would have to assume the events of the first film was only a few months ago because it couldn’t have taken years for Lord Cutler Beckett to arrive and arrest them. At this point Will’s father Bill visits Jack on his ship to reveal that the debt he owes Davy Jones needs to repaid which Jack made a deal with him years ago to raise the Black Pearl and jack would join his crew for 100 years or 100 souls, this debt was something Jack was never going to repay and forgot all about it. Commodore James Norrington who gave Jack a one day lead to escape is on the run and disappears but is also set to be arrested for his action. All Three men want Davy Jones’s chest which contains his heart for their own goals some better than others. Will wants the heart to free his father and Jack wants it to free his debt and Norrington wants it so he can join the navy again. The adventure begins and they have a good one on one on one sword fight but Davy Jones’s crew catches up with them and battle begins and at first Jack runs away when the Kraken is released Elizabeth realizes the monster only wants Jack so she tricks him and chains him to the ship which allows the others to escape and Jack goes down. Its not long after that we learn Norrington won the battle for the heart and rejoins the Navy. The group now decides to rescue Jack but first they need a captain whose been there and the resurrected Hector Barbossa to lead the way and the film ends.

the film overall did get better but did seem at times that they couldn’t figure out when to actually end the film but found the perfect ending. The story had a good twist with the good guys not truly winning, which was gambit if this film would have failed. The highlights for me was the sword fight and the ending of course but other than that there wasn’t too much magic that carried over from the first film. In the end I am giving this film a good high B grade or 89 percent.

Sonic The Hedgehog Movie Review

By: Justin Hopkins

**SPOILER WARNING**

  It was almost a shoe in that I was going to go see this movie. No matter how far away from my normal it is. Growing up, you had your Mario games, which were always good, and the insanity that was Crash Bandicoot, where I spent most of my time. Then, you had Sonic The Hedgehog. A bright, colorful world, with some interesting music, that was all about going fast. Levels that were so much fun, and tested you each time. Doing your best to try and beat your top score. Trying to rescue the animals and defeat Eggman. While the years have not been as kind to him, as his Nintendo counterpart, the character of Sonic has maintained his allure, and when his movie was announced. Brought all of those feelings I had when playing the earlier games rushing back to the surface, and couldn’t wait to see it. Was it worth the wait though. Through all the years, and marketing fiasco. Did they do the blue hedgehog justice, or was it just another nail in the coffin. Lets jump through some rings and discuss shall we.

The movie starts out with Sonic running through a city, with Dr.Robotnik chasing after him. Firing rockets at him. A bit of narration later, and we jump all the way back to when he was a child. On his own planet, that looks a lot like the games, and he is running wild. Despite being told he had to keep his speed a secret, from his mother figure. An owl named Longclaw. Who scolds him for exposing himself like that, and they are attacked. She tries to escape with him, but ends up getting shot down. Using a ring, opens a portal to Earth. Giving him the sack of rings. Telling him to never expose himself again, and to never stop running. Before making him go through, and the portal closes, with her holding off their attackers. We jump to ten years later, and he has made himself home in the small town of Green Hills. While he has stayed true to Longclaw telling him to stay hidden. He has made himself a part of everyone’s lives. By watching from the shadows. From messing with Crazy Carl, the lone person who knows he is there and especially the Police Chief Tom Wachowski and wife Maddie Wachowski, and while he puts on a good face about it. The loneliness is eating away, until it literally bursts out of him. Causing a massive blackout. Which is picked up immediately by the Government. Who sends in the eccentric genius, Dr. Robotnik to figure it out. Sonic seeing that he is about to be caught. Collects his things and runs to Tom’s shed to make the jump to a new planet, but before he can go through with it. Is busted by Tom, and he drops the rings into a portal. Sending them to San Francisco. Enlisting Tom’s help, Sonic sets off to retrieve them, with Robotnix right on their heels the entire way. Dead set on either bringing him in, either alive or dead.

I really enjoyed how they handled bringing the characters to the big screen. Had a lot of simple things that were just woven into one story. From Sonic struggling to keep himself a secret, but being torn apart in his loneliness. His desire to have friends and do all this stuff he can only observe from afar. When you mix in how hyper active and good natured he is, really shows many layers Sonic actually has. Then you have Tom, who is longing to have more in his life. To be a hero, and have the excitement and rush that he feels should come with a badge. Along with a foil of a bad guy, who is not only the smartest guy in the world, but knows it, and brow beats and terrorizes everyone in his wake. Mix in fast paced action, comedic moments, and a lot of emotion and you get yourself a really charming story.

Speaking of, the action scenes were perfect. It took him back to his roots and made it all about his speed. Showing it in the bar that he can’t throw fists, but when he just uses his speed to his advantage, is next to unstoppable. Especially in the finale, during the final chase from Robotnik. Didn’t know how he was going to turn things around, but excited to see how it was going to happen.

Now, suppose I should talk about the animated look of Sonic The Hedgehog. Now, I may be the rare exception that didn’t mind his first look. They definitely made the right choice though. With all the close ups they had on him. Would have wore thin on those who didn’t like it, and he looks better now, but the part I loved, was the end credits. They had a full animated look of the Sonic from the game. Running through a level, that was set up with moments from the movie. Was such a fun way to bring us into the Mid Credit scene and hope more people take a lesson from this, because it was great.

Of course, there was plenty of call outs to the games. Living in Green Hills, which is a play off the Green Hill Zone. Love how they showed how he got his red shoes, in a rather touching scene of him getting his first ever gift and how much they meant to him. This might be me reading to much into it, but found it amusing that when he was hit off the roof and the rings went everywhere, like they would in the game, but when he was knocked down for what appeared to be for the count, was also when he didn’t have the rings on him, which again, what happens in the game. Also, Robotnik’s robots, and one downed robot would spawn another and another. Really showing how much of a genius he really is. Plus, one that really wasn’t part of the game, but loved the line, I hate mushrooms. Taking a friendly jab at his rival Mario which got me to laugh a little harder than necessary.  Always have to appreciate when they pull from the resources at hand, and they do that in spades here.

Castwise was simply perfect. Ben Schwartz did wonderful as the voice of Sonic. Bringing out the fun loving side of Sonic, but also how hard he was taking having to leave. Was finally getting to enjoy Earth one moment and how much that it hurt that he had to leave. James Marsden was great as Tom. A fun loving cop, who lives to do the right thing by everyone, with a ton of sarcastic wit. Which blended so well off not only Sonic, but even more off Jim Carrey’s Robotnik. There is a moment where Robotnik and Tom meet and just feels like a really conversation off the cuff and not scripted. Carrey doesn’t seem to have missed a beat. Bringing out so much of Robotnik. Eccentricities, Egomaniacal, and stole a lot of the scenes he was a part of. Made the comically villain seem like a genuine threat and not just a joke. Just wanted to see more of him especially if it was with Sonic or Tom especially.

Negative wise.. Would kind of like to know why Sonic called him Eggman. He had a reason behind everyone’s nickname. Called Tom Donut Lord due to him talking to his donuts, and Maggie the Pretzel Lady because she does Yoga. Kind of hyped for the DVD to see if there was something I missed or deleted scenes. Suppose that since I am hyped this isn’t a negative, but it’s all I got, and starting to realize that I am pretty much praising every movie I have seen this years and it’s all I got.

This was all around, just a fun, heart warming movie. It wasn’t side splitting movie, just one that made you smile, and even more so if you are a fan of the Sonic The Hedgehog Games, but not necessary to kick back and simply enjoy it. Final Grade is an A+ and would gladly suggest checking it out in theaters.

I hope you enjoyed and as always…

Thank you for reading.

Friday Roundabout 2/14/2020

By Paul Anthony

First and fore most let me say Happy Valentine’s Day and I hope everyone enjoys the weekend! Okay now let’s get down to business where we run down through some news that you might have missed. Last night seemed to be a quiet night until you guessed it Matt Reeves released the first footage of Robert Pattinson in his Batman Suit now it was nothing more than the chest up in a dark red light area with some music playing and it was in my eyes a pretty epic scene. Now I am the first to say I am looking forward to seeing more before I make final decision on if I like it or not but the teaser scene was a good start but some fans aren’t impressed and comes out and says his jaw structure isn’t right and what not but than there are some fans that are digging the outfit and compare it to the video popular Arkham game series either way it is creating a lot of buzz and even had DareDevil trending because of the red lighting and stuff like that.

We will continue with the D.C. trend because last week the Film Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn was release and yes it came in at number 1 and grossed so far 90 million worldwide off an 85 million dollar budget people are calling it an failure because the studio was expecting more money from opening the weekend. now a rumor broke that Warner bros was changing the name to Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey to get people to go and see it, now to my understanding many people who saw it did enjoy it, the studio denied it but now the film is called now, weird right?

Ever since they remade Nightmare on Elm Street people craved for Robert Englund to come back and he doesn’t help his cause by talking about the idea of being Freddy again. now when studios reboot a franchise you can kiss the previous actors goodbye this is no different however he now saying he is too old and I have to agree he is right but he did reveal he would like a cameo which I agree and it should be a good send off and I hope it will shut fans up!

Also we got to listen to Billie Eilish theme song for the next James Bond film which comes out in April called No Time To Die which is the same as title as the song. Now I heard the song and without video from the movie I wasn’t impressed but when I watch the video it made sense now once again I have to see entire film with the song to fully judge it but for now it is another good start.

Earlier this wee WWE signed a female wrestler who made the news in that world in a big way and that because she is the 18 year old daughter of The Rock and that makes Simone Johnson an fourth generation wrestler and of course Charlotte Flair gave advice to her and that and that was block out the noise which she would know because of what she had to go through in the business so good luck and can’t wait to see her in the ring. Now John Cena is one of the biggest names in the business and has earn this respect and that respect is that he can pick his opponent at WrestleMania. I am sure we will soon see what story will happen with who when that time comes.

Academy Awards Winners are!

By Paul Anthony

Here we are again another award show honestly the biggest one of the season and to say it was a dud would be an understatement. Every year it does seem like that this show does take a hit. They went without a host and jokes went over people’s head and the speeches were predictable and there were enough of weird moments and the crowd was basically falling asleep, well I was but then a surprise performance by Eminem which woke the crowd but if you missed the show here are the winners of this years Academy Awards!

Best picture
1917
The Irishman
Jojo Rabbit
Joker
Little Women
Marriage Story
Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
Winner= Parasite
Ford v Ferrari
Best actress
Cynthia Erivo, Harriet
Winner= Renée Zellweger, Judy
Scarlett Johansson, Marriage Story
Charlize Theron, Bombshell
Saoirse Ronan, Little Women
Best actor
Winner= Joaquin Phoenix, Joker
Leonardo DiCaprio, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
Antonio Banderas, Pain and Glory
Adam Driver, Marriage Story
Jonathan Pryce, The Two Popes
Best director
Winner= Bong Joon-ho, Parasite
Sam Mendes, 1917
Todd Phillips, Joker
Martin Scorsese, The Irishman
Quentin Tarantino, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
Music (original song)
“I’m Standing With You” from Breakthrough
“Into The Unknown” from Frozen II
“Stand Up” from Harriet
Winner= “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again” from Rocketman
“I Can’t Let You Throw Yourself Away” from Toy Story 4
“Glasgow” from Wild Rose
Music (original score)
Winner= Joker
Little Women
Marriage Story
1917
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
International feature film
France, Les Misérables
North Macedonia, Honeyland
Poland, Corpus Christi
Winner= South Korea, Parasite
Spain, Pain and Glory
Makeup and hairstyling
Winner= Bombshell
Joker
Judy
Maleficent: Mistress of Evil
1917
Visual effects
Avengers: Endgame
The Irishman
The Lion King
Winner= 1917
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
Best film editing
The Irishman
Jojo Rabbit
Joker
Winner= Ford v Ferrari
Parasite
Best cinematography
Winner= Roger Deakins, 1917
Rodrigo Prieto, The Irishman
Lawrence Sher, Joker
Jarin Blaschke, The Lighthouse
Robert Richardson, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
Best sound mixing
Ad Astra
Joker
Winner= 1917
Ford v Ferrari
Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
Best sound editing
1917
Winner= Ford v Ferrari
Joker
Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
Best supporting actress
Winner= Laura Dern, Marriage Story
Florence Pugh, Little Women
Margot Robbie, Bombshell
Kathy Bates, Richard Jewell
Scarlett Johansson, Jojo Rabbit
Documentary short feature
In the Absence
Winner= Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl)
Life Overtakes Me
St. Louis Superman
Walk Run Cha-Cha
Documentary feature
Winner= American Factory
The Cave
The Edge of Democracy
For Sama
Honeyland
Best costume design
Sandy Powell & Christopher Peterson, The Irishman
Mark Bridges, Joker
Arianne Phillips, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
Winner= Jacqueline Durran, Little Women
Mayes C. Rubeo, Jojo Rabbit
Best production design
Winner= Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
The Irishman
1917
Jojo Rabbit
Parasite
Live-action short film
Brotherhood
Nefta Football Club
Winner= The Neighbors’ Window
Saria
A Sister
Best adapted screenplay
Steven Zaillian, The Irishman
Greta Gerwig, Little Women
Winner= Taika Waititi, Jojo Rabbit
Anthony McCarten, The Two Popes
Todd Phillips & Scott Silver, Joker
Best original screenplay
Rian Johnson, Knives Out
Noah Baumbach, Marriage Story
Sam Mendes & Krysty Wilson-Cairns, 1917
Quentin Tarantino, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
Winner= Bong Joon-ho, Parasite
Animated short film
Dcera (Daughter)
Winner= Hair Love
Kitbull
Memorable
Sister
Animated feature film
How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World
I Lost My Body
Klaus
Missing Link
Winner =Toy Story 4
Best supporting actor
Winner= Brad Pitt, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood
Al Pacino, The Irishman
Joe Pesci, The Irishman
Anthony Hopkins, The Two Popes
Tom Hanks, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

Box Office Rundown 2/10/2020

By Paul Anthony

Welcome back to another week of where we find who made it to the number 1 spot and who came up short. This week we saw the release of Birds of Prey which as predicted debuted at number 1. However the problem is the numbers were underwhelming with barely making it to 34 million but with international numbers which saves a lot of movies to worldwide gross came to around 81 million dollars. Another winner in my eyes has been Knives Out this movie last week was out of the top ten only to be back in the top 10 and been in the top ten for most of it’s box office run which started at the end of November. We can’t have winners without Losers though only one of these two films are actually an loser both Gretel and Hansel and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker fell three spots though both remain in the top ten. This week will no doubt shake things up a bit because we have three new movies joining the box office with one being a big name. We have Sonic the Hedgehog which is predicted to be number and then you have Fantasy Island and The Photograph. 2020 hasn’t been all that kind to horror films so it will be interesting to see how well Fantasy Island will actually do.

  1. Birds of Prey, 33.250 million
  2.  Bad Boys For Life, 12.005 million
  3. 1917, 9 million
  4. Dolittle, 6.660 million
  5. Jumanji: The Next Level, 5.553 million
  6. The Gentlemen, 4.180 million
  7.  Gretel and Hansel, 3.510 million
  8.  Knives Out, 2.350 million
  9.  Little Women, 2.325 million
  10.  Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, 2.226 million

 

Predictions

  1. Sonic
  2. Birds of Prey
  3. Bad Boys for Life
  4. Fantasy Island
  5. The Photograph
  6. 1917
  7. Jumanji: The Next Level
  8. The Gentlemen
  9. DoLittle
  10. Knives Out