By Paul Anthony
Welcome to a new week and oh wow what a weekend it was, we had Bad Boys for life and Dolittle going head to head. Many people figured this would be a battle to start the year off both films are big budget films and had star power to go with it but what we ended up getting a no contest. Bad Boys for life took the number 1 spot by a landslide and for Dolittle it failed to come even close to Bad Boys. In fact Dolittle came in third behind the war movie 1917 which took the second spot and Dolittle took the third spot and with a budget of 175 million, this film has become the first big bomb of the year. For the winner this blog I am giving it to Bad Boys because it just crushed anyone and the losers for this week was Dolittle and Under Water. Dolittle because it is becoming a flop and Under water because it fell from 7th to 11th an no longer in the top ten.
1.Bad Boys For Life, 62.150 million
2. 1917, 22 million
3. Dolittle, 21.950 million
4. Jumanji: The Next level, 9.680 million
5. Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker, 8.302 million
6. Little Women, 6.350 million
7. Just Mercy, 5.770 million
8. Knives Out, 4.323 million
9. Like a Boss, 4.35 million
10. Frozen 2, 3.918 million.
Now here are the prediction for how next week’s top ten should or could look like.
- Bad Boys For Life
- The Gentlemen
- The Turning
- Just Mercy
- Jumanji: The Next Level
- Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
- Little Women
- Like a Boss
- Knives Out
By: Justin Hopkins
A Co-worker lent me the original and while I enjoyed it. Thought it would make a great remake. A great story, with psychologically disturbing element to it. Just knew if they came at it from a different approach, they could do something special. When I heard about that one was indeed being made, was excited, but as quickly as I heard, it kind of vanished. Read it was coming to theaters, but it turned out to select theaters and kind of slipped by me for a bit. Now, here we are. A little late to the party, but that is okay. The only question, is was it worth the wait? So, lets travel the ladder, and breakdown Jacob’s Ladder.
The movie starts out with a soldier, being triggered into a flashback, by the sound of a can crushing under his foot. Can became a bomb, and helicopters and flashing lights. All stopping when he took a drug. Only, to have what appeared to be choked out from behind in one moment, and overdosing the next. Two people dragging his body away after he died. We jump to a military base, where Jacob is talking. Feeling is slightly uneasy. He goes to make a call home, and find out he is going to be a Father, when he has to leave, cause a wounded soldier is brought in. Turning out to be his brother, and as the sound of a flatline comes in. We see Jacob in a surgery room, in a hospital. Lost a person and the sound triggered the previous flashback. We see he has a happy life, with his Wife Samantha and son Gabriel. Except, he is having nightmares of a firefight. After he arrives at the hospital, another Soldier has an Overdose, and like the first. He too, is taking the drug. On his way to the therapist, he runs into a homeless Vet, who claims that his Brother Isaac is not only alive, but in the city and is in danger. He doesn’t believe it, nor does his therapist. On the subway he experiences his first hallucination, and when he gets home. Is attacked by two men. One of which is horribly mutilated. He tried to take the second to the police station, but he is not in the trunk. Except the same vet is there, and this time, Jacob takes him seriously. Is going to take him to Isaac, and starts to explain what H.D.A is. A drug that targets traumatic memories in those with P.T.S.D. Except, it makes them crazy, and people are hunting them down. Before he can get finish. Is pushed in front of a train. When no one believes him. Jacob takes it on himself to investigate and after a few jumpscares. He finds Isaac, except the paranoia and as the line between truth and fantasy gets even wider. We find that nothing we have seen is how it is supposed to be and I will leave it there.
(I am putting this here as a secondary warning. If you are planning on watching this movie and checking this out first to see what others think. Would suggest not going further cause I am going to talk about the twist and can ruin the experience of watching it unfold.)
This movie.. tries to pull off a wild swerve, and I didn’t see it coming till the big reveal. Which is that Jacob was the lost brother, on The Ladder all this time, and Isaac was the V.A.Doctor the whole time and The Ladder not only was wiping out the traumatic memory, but making him believe that he was his brother the whole time. Now, I think it was creative, but the process of achievement was very sloppy. There wasn’t a gradual change in the characters, but a rough and rugged one, Samantha especially, cause she was coming off more unlikeable the more we saw her. They really could have used a bit more time to show a natural shift of Samantha and Jacob being the coupe to Samantha and Isaac, but that was not the only problem. An even bigger one, was what Jacob did immediately after, by going to the red head we saw earlier.
She turned out to be a dealer of sorts, working with Hoffman. This scene felt so tact on, because they wanted to bring in more from the original Jacob’s Ladder with her demonic angel wings. The problem is that they were telling a completely different story and it no longer fit the narrative. Would have been better to skip the scene all together and go to Hoffman, or the very least, show her with the wings earlier, and not have them here.
Now, this movie wasn’t all negative. There were some good things as well, and thing I loved was the message that this was telling. They really got the Flashback scene at the beginning of the movie right. The smallest surprise of a loud sound is all it takes to trigger a flashback. Showing how many soldiers suffer from PTSD. The lengths some will go to make the memories stop and how susceptible they are to people like Hoffman. Who is using them like lab rats. A pretty powerful message to have.
Acting wise, you have Michael Ealy playing Jacob and Jesse Williams playing Isaac. I did enjoy their chemistry when they were together. About to building up the brotherly bond between the two. Each had difficult roles, because they had to pretty much switch on the fly. While they pulled it off, Nicole Beharie didn’t. Don’t want to point the finger at her. Maybe if she had more time, would work better, or might be better if I watched it again, but first opinion; she wasn’t that good. Lastly, I did enjoy Guy Burnet’s Hoffman. He seemed like a throw away character till the end, but I did enjoy his speech at the end. As twisted as it was, legitimately believed that he was the only one doing anything for the vets.
Would I suggest this movie to someone? A question that has been floating back and forth since the movie ended, and even all the way through this blog. I enjoyed some of the acting and I liked the message with the P.T.S.D. In a way, it did keep the spirit of Jacob’s Ladder, but only as far as the drug is concerned. The demons were more tacked on to appease the fans of the original and used as nothing more than a jump scare than anything. And the swerve, while creative, wasn’t executed well and I am sure there are better movies that tackle the P.T.S.D. side of things. With that said, I would suggest checking it out. It’s not a movie for everyone, you can have a bit of fun with it, and I did enjoy watching it. And that is all I got. I hope you enjoyed and as always…
Thank you for reading.
By Paul Anthony
I have to admit I never thought the first film ever truly made money but I was wrong. The benchwarmers was a film that came out way back in 2006 and had a budget of 33 million and made 65 million so a 32 million dollar profit. The movie was comedy of course but had a good plot with just certain things being way over the top which you can expect when you have film that stars Rob Schneider, David Spade, Jon Lovitz. Not to mention the film was made by Happy Madison which Adam Sandler production company. Now when I first saw this movie it wasn’t in 2006, maybe 6 or so years later I actually got to watch and I thought it was pretty decent for what they wanted to do. I never researched if there was ever going to be a sequel or anything like that but then one day a few weeks ago one film caught my eye on Netflix titled benchwarmers 2: Breaking Balls. Yes the sequel is a direct to DVD film and the title makes you think this film going to be true garbage but in this case I thought this film was better then the first one despite the title. First only person who is back from the first film was Jon Lovitz reprising his role as Mel but even then his character wasn’t that much over the top with his billions of dollars. In this film the new lead is played by Chris Klein.
The Plot follows ben whos is played by Chris Klein, who was once a up and coming star in the minor leagues of baseball but one game gets his balls crushed when he gets struck by a baseball, it ruined his career and family. years later he works as a landscaper, his wife left him and took their son who sees of course. It is revealed that he became a lawyer through online classes though most good companies don’t approve of that, he gets a job with one of the best companies in the city but the trick is which he learns when he gets there is that his boss only hired him to play on the softball team which Ben no longer wants to play baseball, so he quits and continues to search for a job until he comes across Mel’s firm who wants him both as a lawyer and a manager as of his firm softball team. At the firm he sees a intern that is determine to save her little town from becoming a sewage plant which in the long run they do win the case. However the Firm’s softball team is a joke until ben coaches them and make them believe in themselves and they start winning games and make it to the championship against the defending champs which just happen to be Ben’s old employers of course the benchwarmers win but with some over the top stunts and fights and the film ends on a happy note.
Besides some minor over the top scenes that does nothing for the movie I thought this film was pretty good. Now the comedy wasn’t there though it was a comedy because of the over the top scenes but it never made me laugh instead this felt like a truly a film on a low level about underdogs, the film went away from using kids but that was okay. The acting was average nothing stood out too much in a bad way. Plot was basic and predictable but that is okay as well. In the end I am giving this film a C plus or 70 percent. It’s not the best but not the worse either and better then the first I thought so at least.
By Paul Anthony
Welcome back to another edition of our Roundabout, let’s not waste anytime shall we! Early this morning the rap Legend Eminem dropped another surprise album just like he did back in 2018 when he released Kamikaze now he released Music To Be Murdered By where he continues his attack on the world that said he was washed up and threw some bars at people that attempted to diss him for his previous album insults. This is the rap legend 11th studio album and 2020 also marks his 21st year in the rap game, how crazy is it that he still going strong congrats!
Here is some sad news we learn this week and if you are an wrestling fan then you know the name. This pass week Rocky Johnson passed away. Now many of the younger fans will know him as The Rock’s father but he in his own right was his own person and made a name for himself, he got into a business and broke color barriers and paved the way for his son and many others as well and for the family here at Smash we are sorry for your loss.
Wendy Williams from The Wendy Williams Show in under fire for making a comment regarding Oscar winning Actor Joaquin Phoenix’s cleft, she basically said he look sexy in a weird way or something in that order, I am not fan of her show nor do I ever watch but I will say this much, these comments don’t make her a bad person or anything like that. I don’t believe she deserves to get any backlash for but social media took it upon themselves to take it an extra step. Now She did have to apologize for it but still she wasn’t mocking him or anything like that, let’s grow up people.
Will Smith has been a busy man in the passed year or so. We got Bad Boys three opening this week which has to be the final film of the series but he did say something that caught my attention. He admitted that during the promotional tours he sometimes has to pretend to like his movies though I don’t believe he admitted which films he didn’t like. Will has a long career in film but he has had plenty of misses. Does this really shock you that some people have to do this? I mean there are just as many of bad films as there good films in one’s career, they can’t like every single film they star in.
Justin hates Tom Cruise but I am pretty sure he likes Jack Reacher, well good news is Reacher will be coming back but not in a film form instead he will be coming to Amazon Prime and this makes me pumped because here is why the show Jack Ryan has been a hit for Amazon so why not bring in another fan favorite character. Jack Ryan has been in a number of films but never could gain steam so let’s see if magic can strike again!
Sony release the trailer for their film Morbius, which stars Jared Leto as the main character. Sony struck gold with Spider-Man films from Disney and Venom was sleeper hit with that being said Sony really wants to build their villains up and let’s see if this film can be any good!
Okay let’s wrap this up with some humor here and there is a man who is deaf is now suing Porn Hub for not having closed captioning on their porn. Of all the things to sue for and to go public with it has to be funny. I have to wonder what closed captioning would look like with porn, I am guessing a lot single words and letters!
By Paul Anthony
I have to say I am not the biggest fan of the show, I watch it from time to time but I am a Wheel of Fortune guy but when I got wind of this tournament I knew I had to watch to see these three champions of the game use their style to win the grand prize of 1 million dollars, who would win I thought because each person held records in the game show history. Brad Rutter was a champ nearly twenty years ago when a champ could only go a week on the show but when the tournaments came around he showed up and won the big bucks. Then you had Ken Jennings who has the longest winning streak in the show history but always would come in second in certain tournaments after that long streak but then you had James Holzhauer who set record wit his gambling style and playing the numbers, which helped him set the single game record, so when you put those three together who would come out at the G.O.A.T.
The games played pretty much how we thought it would be. Truth be told brad no doubt was the weakest of the three and it showed badly for him. Brad luck seemed to run out before the tournament even began so in the end it was going to come down to James and Ken and that battle was epic. James’ game was numbers, he would start high to get those daily doubles and gamble by risky is it all, he might have been very lucky with his answers and smart with picking his spots. However he was going against Ken who nearly beat a machine that was programed to win. Ken didn’t need luck he was smart though he never took it for guaranteed which might be his charm. Ken had to be the favorite no matter what. Match one went to him but barely James hit his spots and lost by only two hundred points but he finished strong, Match 2 went to James then the rest was all Ken who took home a million dollars and with that win seals the deal that Ken Jennings is the Jeopardy G.O.A.T but don’t feel sorry for Brad and James, they left with a cool 250K not bad for losing right? I am sure we haven’t seen the last of these three in the game. James I am sure will be back for the champions of champions his time is far from over and maybe one day we will get rematch.
By: Justin Hopkins
So, I was struggling a bit. Choosing which movie I wanted to review for this Classic 13. Would pick one, I was so sure about, only to change my mind at the last moment. Even started watching one and turned it off after a minute. Just nothing seemed to feel right, until I spotted Event Horizon. A movie a Co-Worker of mine stressed how great this was and called it, “Hellraiser in space.” Have to say, after watching it. He wasn’t that far off, except this may be in fact, better than Hellraiser. So, lets go amongst the stars, and go through the psychological horrors held within Event Horizon.
The movie opens with a bit of information on where Mankind is on space exploration. 2015 colonized the moon. By 2032 began mining on Mars and in 2040, The research Vessel went to explore the far reaches of the solar system, only to disappear beyond Neptune and we open in 2047. A rescue crew and Dr. Weirs are heading to Neptune tol address an immediate situation. Once they get closer to Neptune, Dr. Weirs makes them aware of the situation and what the Event Horizon actually was, and that was finding a way to travel ” Faster than light.” By using a gravity drive, the ship would fold time and space, so that it’s location and destination would be one in the same. Allowing it to punch through and appear where it was going in seconds. We find out later on, that it achieves this affect, by using a man made Black Hole. It all appeared to go exactly according to plan, but never returned till now and they are going to find out what happened. When they arrived, they couldn’t detect any signs off life, and a Miller, Stark, Mr. Justin, and Cooper go in to investigate, and while checking out the room the Gravity Drive. He gets sucked inside. Sending out a massive shockwave that damages the Lewis and Clark ship. Forcing everyone to evacuate onto the Event Horizon. With twenty hours of oxygen, they not only have to try and get the ship fixed, but figure out what happened on the ship, as more and more start to hallucinate and paranoia begins to sweep over, and that is where I am going to leave it.
I almost don’t even know where to begin throwing positives. Philip Eisner, seems like a good place. The Writer, who brought this psychological masterpiece together. It is one thing to scare someone, but this movie gets into your head. The way it tortures everyone with their greatest regrets, failures, and desires even. Way it haunts peters and teases her with her son and his condition. Miller is a caring leader, but strict, and the ships hurls the reason why he is so strict at him, and poor baby bear (Justin) And everything in this movie has some sort of meaning, and that is so much more powerful than just building emotion. It makes repeat watching even more fun. I am watching it while I type this and picked up to things that I overlooked the first time, because I knew more. That is just beautiful. Standing ovation for Philip Eisner.
Giant kudos goes out to Paul Anderson and everyone who worked behind the scenes as well. The shots and lighting were great. The scene where they are first inside. Flashing of lightning illuminating the gory walls waiting to be discovered. The atmosphere is intense. When you are looking at the Event Horizon, in the dark and dim lights. You see all these regular instruments, that take on an evil, and scary form. You had these floating balls of coolant that were such a fun addition to have floating around the glorious room that housed the Gravity Drive. The sets were great and shots made them that much better. The CG involved, is not bad for a nineties movie. Don’t know much about space, but they don’t do anything to outrages to the point of dumb, and the carnage candy is awesome. Especially the death of D.J and again where Justin getting sent out into space.
I don’t even think I can give a nod to one actor over another here. They were all so good. You had Laurence Fishburne, as Captain Miller, who you don’t really like, but he has a reason for being so strict and his sole reason for being is his crews safety. Than you have Sam Neill as Dr. Weir. This is the first movie I have watched of his that is not Jurassic Park, and definitely want to watch more. While he may not have started out as the bad guy, by the time he gets there. Is such a good bad guy. Could talk about the chemistry these two have been great, but that’s the truth between everyone. Kathleen Quinlan, Joely Richardson, Jack Noseworthy, Jason Isaacs, Sean Pertwee, and the “lifesaver” Richard T. Jones. Absolute All-Stars, each and everyone.
Negative wise… Guess you can say some of the space CGI is a bit dated, but I have seen so much worse in recent years than what we get here. So, minor nitpick I can see someone might have. Doesn’t really bother me to much, but one big one, is something we don’t have, and that is the full 130 minute cut of the film. It was cut down due to how gruesome some of it was and whatnot, but when they went back and wanted to use it. It was not well achieved, and most of which is simply lost. Obviously, this isn’t going toward my final thought on the film, and I don’t have anything negative to say about the film itself. Just something depressing I found out about the movie.
In closing, if you haven’t had a chance to check out this classic film. I couldn’t suggest it enough. Mastercraft in Psychological Horror, and shows that you don’t need jumpscares to scare your audience. Just a showcase of talented people, crafting a story, with some talented actors bringing it all to life. Final Grade – S
Hope you enjoyed and as always…
Thank you for reading.
By Paul Anthony
Welcome to this week edition and like always we will look at the top ten movies and see how well they did! This past weekend we saw the advantage of having a limited release first then having a wide release. two films in the top 5 had limited releases before going into this week. The number 1 spot goes to the war film 1917 and last week winner Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker fell to number 2. Just Mercy which is a drama that had a limited release came in at number 5 in it’s first weekend as a wide release. the Biggest winner though goes to Just Mercy because it sat at number 29 and jumped up 24 spots to reach the top 5. 1917 was big winner as well because it went from 17th to 1st jumping up 16 spots. We do have a few losers both Spies in Disguise and Frozen 2 fell four spots but still remain in the top ten unlike the Grudge who fell from 5th to 12th. I am also starting a new title and that is the flop of weekend and the first one to be added to this list is Under Water which came in 7th in it’s opening weekend. now Let’s look at our top ten.
- 1917, 36.500 million
- Star Wars; the Rise of Skywalker, 15.059 million
- Jumanji: The next Level, 14 million
- Like A Boss, 10 million
- Just Mercy, 10 million
- Little Women, 7.650 million
- Under Water, 7.003 million
- Frozen 2, 5.761 million
- Knives out, 5.725 million
- Spies in Disguise, 5.108 million
Now we do have two big names entering the run this week and that is the long awaited Bad Boys for Life and the reboot of Dolittle! Now here is what I am predicting!
- Bad Boys For Life
- Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker
- Jumanji: The Next Level
- Just Mercy
- Little Women
- Frozen 2
- Like a Boss
- Under Water
By: Justin Hopkins
So, I decided to mix things up, just a little bit. Up until this point, have mostly kept this series to B movie horror, but the action genre has some gems just waiting to be stumbled upon. Checking through the list, 88 jumped out to me right away. Mostly, because I am a big fan of Katharine Isabelle. The synopsis sounded promising and was sure this would be perfect. Wow, this movie was really something else. Let’s jump right into this one and I will do my best to make heads and tails of this rather interesting film.
88, starts out by giving some information on what Fuge States are (In a very brief explanation, they are a mental disorder where one loses memory and self identity for periods of time. Mostly due to a traumatic event) and that is where Gwen is when the movie starts. In a trance like state when she is broken of it has no idea where she is, how she got there or anything. Her hand is bloody and wrapped up, and her bag is full of gumballs and a gun. When one of the waitresses sees it, screams and alerts the cops in the diner. After an old man taps her, and she flinches, causing her to shot another waitress, and she flees the scene, with the police right behind her. Then we jump to another version of Gwen, passed out on the side of the road in a red dress. This is not the Gwen we see at the diner, but one who almost runs off pure impulse. She attacks the man who pulls over to help her, and steals his car and cigarettes, and goes by the name Flamingo, and this is how the movie plays out. Hoping back and forth, with the Gwen version trying to find out what has happened to her and the Flamingo one, going about things almost randomly, till she learns that her boyfriend was killed by a man named Cyrus, and that is honestly, about as close to the story that I could easily describe in the way I normally would.
Have to give a round of applause to the Director April Mullen and writer Tim Doiron. The way they brought these two stories together was simply incredible. Nothing is ever just a wasted moment. Even a simple sentence in the Gwen half ends up being something massive in the Flamingo story and vice-versa. A little sentence about the situation between Vinnie and Cyrus becomes a big part of what set everything off. The milk and gumballs and the number 88. It’s a movie that makes you sit and pay attention to everything and can be a slight issue at times, cause it’s so easy to miss something. That said, they did a fantastic job at connecting all the dots though.
Between watching and doing this, did a bit of research on Fuge states. Out of curiosity, wanting to see how much of what we see from Gwen\Flamingo is coming from the real deal, and yeah they did a good job at that. Flamingo is a character who doesn’t really ever seem to be in reality. She just goes about her day from one thing to the next. Often experiencing hallucination and blackouts. Now, she may or may not be to an extreme exaggerated form. I don’t know that much about the condition, only read a few articles, but the fact they obvious took time to take the condition seriously is a nice touch.
Acting wise, Katharine Isabelle was fantastic. Playing the more sweet and caring Gwen, who didn’t want to hurt anyone and just wanted to know what happened and why her love was killed. Than turn it around to the mentally broken and violent prone Flamingo. Both roles were so important. Each of them had to carry the narrative and couldn’t imagine anyone other than Katharine Isabelle did. On the villain side, we have Cyrus, played by the extremely talented Christopher Lloyd. He plays such a great bad guy, because it always comes as such a surprise. It shouldn’t really at this point, but he was really sadistic in this, and I think they may have ruined it a bit with the ending. Which we will get into now.
I genuinely didn’t see the Gwen ending coming and still don’t know if I liked it. Felt like a shock that was right there for you to see, and that was how Aster died. All this time, was about avenging his death, and then you see what happens. That while Cyrus and his men were coming to kill them. It was Gwen who shot him by mistake, and that was what triggered the Fuge State, and she gets arrested after Cyrus kills himself. I liked the surprise. Did something different, and not so much the surprise swerve that causes my dislike, but the suicide. I cared about both Gwen and Flamingo and this just seemed to make everything the two have been through for nothing, but maybe that was the point and they want you to think about it long after it’s over, and ask me a week from now. May end up really liking this, but for now. Was such a depressing way for Gwen’s story to end, but not the final shot. Once, again we jump back to Flamingo, going into the Diner. She starts to hallucinate again, as she takes the spot in the diner, we start with, and her and Aster’s song begins to play, and we zoom in on her face. Recreating the exact shot that the movie begins on. While I don’t quite like where the story ends. I did like how the movie comes to an end, by circling back to where we start with.
This movie can be a chore to watch at times. At an hour and twenty eight minutes, it doesn’t seem like all that long, but with how much that is happening and how much you have to pay attention. It can fell much longer, but would absolutely suggest 88 to anyone who wants a mind bender of a movie to watch. It’s a fun movie that is well worth the watch. Hope you enjoyed the review and as always…
Thank you for reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
I found myself more excited for this movie than I originally thought I would be. I enjoyed the trailers. The little bit of what we have seen of the monsters, I liked. Really made me think about what they were. To a point, was was excited to see Kristen Stewart. Outside of one of the Twilight Movies, have never seen one of her movies, and she is a big name and excited to finally see one of her movies that I wanted to see. So, I went in with a fair amount of hype… and they cleared all expectation by leaps and bounds. Lets go in and explain what I love so much about Underwater.
They start things off with some rapid fire news clips about an incident that shows an explosion had taken place and that drilling would continue. It was kind of hard to read, but you get enough to know that something bad had happened. Then you go to Norah, who has a bit of monolog as she is in the showers, brushing her teeth. She goes to investigate a sound and you get an idea of how big the place is, before everything goes crazy as an explosion rings out, and she races down the hall. Trying to make everyone aware that they have to go now. Her and Rodrigo manage to make it, but before anyone else can make it. They have to close the doors, before the pressure takes down the entire rig. After checking on the terminal. Seeing the damage was extensive and they have to get to the pods immediately. They start through the falling apart rig and ever enclosing claustrophobia. Managing to save crew member Paul along the way, and find the pods have all been taken and only Captain Lucien and a handful of survivors and the only way they are going to make it out alive, is to go further down, and walk across the sea floor, and get to the pods on the drilling facility itself. Stressing the amount of danger that is alone, but an even more dangerous entity awaits and that is where I stop, because you should go and watch this movie as soon as possible, and don’t let the incoming spoilers ruin it for you. So, if you haven’t come back when you have before reading on.
This movie did several things that I loved, and one was way they build tension, and used everything they could to achieve that. That the monsters were not the only danger that the survivors had to content with, but the crushing pressure, lack of oxygen, low lights. All of which played into the monster attacks as well, because when they did come for them. There was so little that any of them could do and the monsters seemed to even use those elements to their advantage. A way a predator in its natural environment would.
Love the way this film was shot. Making you feel just so claustrophobic at times. All the sounds of the rig falling apart and later the monsters scratching and slapping off the metal. The muffled sounds from underwater sounded great. Underwater scenes looked great. Only showing little bits at a time, and the monsters seemingly coming from nowhere because of how dark the ocean is. Goes into what I said earlier and how well they used everything they had to their advantage.
Than we get to the monsters, and wow they really knocked it out of the park. Looked like a bizarre mixture of squids and humans and then you get a massive creature that comes out of the drilled hole in the ground. They show them, but never fully, nor do they tell you much. They make the excellent choice of leaving them unexplained and let your imagination come up with what these things were, but all of them, looked great.
Than there was the humanity that is in play here. Normally, when you get a group, in a dire situation. You get one who is either hiding information to save themselves, or sabotaging someone else. Not here, you don’t quite the opposite. Most of their demises, came because of them making the ultimate sacrifice, so, the others could live. From Rodrigo not telling anyone his helmet was defective, The Captain cutting the cord. All leading up to the finale. It was the ultimate display of humanity, making sure they could get as many out as they can.
Before I move on, have to talk about the cast. Like, I said, don’t know much about Kristen Stewart. Hear a lot of negative things about her, but I think she was stellar as Norah. Norah was a character already rocked by death, from losing her fiance, and haunted by her decision to close the door on the rig that was blowing up, and you see her carrying the weight of every loss, and when it was her time to make the sacrifice. You really cared and was awesome to see her take out the creature at the same time, and Kristen Stewart brought her to life in the best possible way and really shined. Right behind her was Jessica Henwick as Emily. Really rooting for her, and had me on the edge of my seat when it looked like she was going to die. Evolving from someone so scared to even step into the water, to saving both Norah and Liam. At first, I thought I was going to put T.J. Miller in the negatives. Every other word out of his mouth, was some sort of a joke. Some hitting and some missing by a wide margin, but I got to thinking more about his character, and what happened to him, and most importantly, when he died, and it all clicked in one big positive for me. His jokes, despite being a little to many. Makes you really care about his character and he dies before the tension from the monsters kicks into high gear and doesn’t slow down the pace when it really starts going.
Negative wise…. I got nothing. I explained the issue I had with T.J’s jokes, and there are times where you struggle to see what is going on, but that is not a negative as far as I am concerned. It represents what is going on to the characters at that moment and you do get to see the creatures and everything you want to see anyways. The actors were all spot on and loved the story.
The highest grade we give on these, is S, and this is an easy S grade movie. I had so much fun and strongly suggest watching this in the theaters, and that is all I got. I hope you enjoyed. As always…
Thank you for reading.
By: Justin Hopkins
It is a sad way to kick-off a new year, when you realize that a game you love, is just not for you anymore, but that is the way this year is starting for me. A game that I have loved for the best part of a year and a half, has finally pushed my last nerve and have to walk away. It is sad, but as I look into the new year. There is a lot to be excited for. So, one game may have come to an end for me, I have six more to look forward too. Before I start, got to say, I play on Playstation, so with the exception of my Honorable Mention. We will focus on Sony. Not that there’s anything wrong with PC or Xbox, just going with what I got. Cool, let’s get started than.
HONORABLE MENTION – HELLBLADE 2: SENUA SAGA
The only reason that this is sitting at Honorable Mention and not number 1, is that it is not confirmed for 2020. I haven’t bought an Xbox since the 360. The moment that trailer dropped, I knew I would be getting an Xbox X-Series to continue Senua’s Journey. I loved the first game. Such an intense, beautifully made game, with a gripping story that sucked you in the game with everything they did and can only imagine what they have store for the second game.
6. PREDATOR: HUNTING GROUNDS
It seems that I am in need of a new online multiplayer game and what better, than Predator Hunting Grounds. Seems like a very basic idea. You either play as your choice of Yautja and hunting a team of marines. The Marines are working together to complete their mission and escape alive. The concept art looks fantastic, especially for the Yautja and am really excited to use the bow and you get the skin from the first movie if you Pre-Order. As always, go into it with a bit of caution. Online multiplayers can fall apart quickly, but still willing to give this one a chance all the same.
5. Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2
This game is probably the one game I know the least about, but am strangely being pulled towards it. It action roleplay game, that sees you playing a young vampire in Seattle, and that was all it really needed to be said to win me over. As you play through, you learn new abilities through factions engaged in a civil war, and I just like it. Wish I could say why. Didn’t even play the first one. Just has a certain vibe that has really won me over, and if they have a fair amount of creative character, would be that much more happy for it.
4. MARVEL AVENGERS
Alright, so the first trailer did not do this a whole lot of justice. The Kamala Khan one though, did a lot better, and with test players hyping it up even more. Don’t know if this was announced, but curious on how many heroes will be involved, and the story looks interesting, and I have a weakness for Superhero games. Have even enjoyed the bad ones, so this one should be a blast. Especially, if we get to play as our choice of characters, or focus a bit more on the lesser known heroes.
3. RESIDENT EVIL 3: NEMESIS
Resident Evil 2 Remake was fantastic and set the bar for how a video game remake should work. They stayed true to what made it great. Tweaked a few things to change it up and gave side stories and than the original versions. We might not get all of that this time around, but with them saying they took what they learned in 2 and carried it over to 3 has me confident going in, and as a bonus, you get the online multiplayer that they have been talking about for some time now, Project Resistance. Capcom has a successful track with their remakes, and have no doubt they can make it at a hat trick with Nemesis.
2. Doom Eternal
I love the Doom Series. They are so much fun. The adrenaline filled carnage of playing Doom Guy. Running around killing everything in your wake. Game literally knows exactly what it is. Oh, this rocket launcher, isn’t enough. Well how about if it shoots multiple locked on rockets? Still want more, how about a movable turret? No, here is a gun that will wipe out everyone in a bloody paste and you get to carry them all around at your ready. Low on ammo. Get up and close for more, or use this chainsaw, and god yes, give me more. Can play these game all the time, and a pre-order for Doom 64. A big yes to even more Doom, and just misses out on the number one slot.
1. DESTROY ALL HUMANS
I don’t think there is any game series that brings back more fond memories than Destroy All Human. A friend of mine way, back in high school gave me a game he swore I could not beat without cheats, it was Destroy All Humans, and I did beat it without cheating. Bought a Wii for the lone purpose to play, Destroy All Humans: Big Willy Unleashed. Watched another friend fail for over 4 hours to get any points in human plink-o in Destroy All Humans: Path Of The Furon. I even have the Original on PS4 due to a charity giveaway, but when this game finally comes out, am going to be getting a copy and just getting lost in the world of Cryptosporidium 137 all over again. Graphics look spectacular and hope for some new content, but one way or another. Destroy All Humans is the game I am most looking forward to the most, in 2020
I know, I didn’t say Cyberpunk 2077. I am going to play it, but is a game I know less about than Vampires. I know they have been working on it for a long time and don’t want to look into it at all. Want to go in blind, and because of that. It did not make the list, but I am sure there is plenty more that didn’t make the list. Feel free to drop any in the comments. In the meantime, hope you enjoyed and as always…
Thank you for reading.