By: Justin Hopkins
Thor has always been the sore thumb of the MCU. The actors and actresses have always turned out good performances, Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleson leading the pact. Story wise though, have always come up short. Ragnarok turned that all around. Giving us a fun, suspenseful, action filled movie, with a surprise ending.
When utilized correctly, foreshadowing is a wonderful writing tool. Done so subtle that you hardly notice that Surtur and Odin have given hints on the ending till its over and those scenes are that much powerful for it. Big thumbs up for it.
Chris Hemsworth’s Thor comes full circle in this film. Better then anyone in the Marvel cinematic universe at this point. Introduced in the first film as a bratty, arrogant child and we’ve watched him continuously grow from there into the character we see here. One who enjoys life, humble and still maintains the heart of a warrior. If this is his final solo Thor movie. Glad it ended with him earning the title King of Asgard.
Cate Blanchett gave us a villain like we haven’t seen much of at this point. Diabolical, heinous, powerhouse Hela. Thor’s sister and Goddess of death. She held herself throughout as a woman with no fear and took down anything that got in her way. Had you hanging on to every word she said and anticipating her next move. The speech between her and Thor in the Throne room was adrenaline pounding and chilling at the same moment.
Newcomers and support cast all brought in new elements that made this movie what it was. Tessa Roberts Valkyrie was tremendous as the fallen solider working up the courage to face the cause of her downward spiral. Finally got to see Idris Elba’s show Heimdall as the tougher then nails warrior protecting the innocents. Can’t say enough about how good Mark Ruffalo and Chris Hemsworth working together. The short Hulk arc was just enough to answer some questions and leave us wanting more. Throw in the fun and charismatic Jeff Goldblum and Taika Waititiall. Making this top of the MCU Library.
The last thing I need to bring up was how well the Doctor Strange cameo was. Alot of cameos can come across as forced, but his was seemless. Showing that in the time since he took the mantle, he had become a guardian of the Earth and more powerful sorcerer.
Thor Ragnarok is an MCU must see in theaters. Great performances and story. CGI was top notch. Fun and witty. Fight scenes were exciting and heart to spare.
By: Justin Hopkins
Jeepers Creepers was terrifying when I was a kid. Presenting us with a new monster that was bone chilling and mysterious. Fed off people’s fear and ate what he liked off the ones he chose. Completely relentless, taking everything they could throw and it was the first time I watched a monster movie where the monster won, and in not some last second resurrection for the jump scare, but got exactly what he wanted. Then the second one came out giving us an even more exciting chapter, and have been patiently waiting on pins and needles ever since. The monster had so much more story to tell, and couldn’t just end there. Took 14 years but we finally got the part 3, and the wait was well worth it. Bringing the Creeper back in hellacious fashion and gave a great story to run forward as well as end the period of time that eclipsed between the three movies.
The story was pretty solid at times. Showing us a farming community who’d heard stories of The Creeper, but chalked it up to folklore and legends. Shifting between the talented Gabrielle Haugh’s character Addison Brandon who was living with her tormented Grandmother who was being haunted by the ghost and victim of the Creeper. Warning her to run. That he was coming to retrieve the hand he lost and the son had buried. Meanwhile you have Sheriff Dan Tashtego (Stan Shaw) and returning Sgt. Davis Tubbs (Brandon Smith) leading a group of men to finally put an end to the Creepers rampage before the 23 days run up.
These movie seemlessly bucked a massive horror tend, by filming primarily in the day light, in wide open areas at times. Allowing us to see the creature throughout the movie. Those on make up and prosthetics deserve all the credit in the world because it was their hard work that made that happen. Sculpting a chilling mask and got every little detail but was thin enough to allow Jonathon Breck to create facial movements at the same time.
Jonathon Breck has really etched himself in horror movie elite with his performance as the Creeper. Taking him to a whole other level in the film since he was on display so much. Carrying himself like the dominate force of nature he is suppose to be. While showing a surprising ammount of charisma that complement the Creeper. Breck enjoyment of playing this character again was apparent and the Creeper was that much better for it.
Minus a few poor CGI shots and a needles slow motion sequence. Thought very highly of this long awaited sequel. The twist at the end putting the events of this movie between part 1 and 2 may be a little off putting to some but I liked it. Knowledge of knowing what was going to happen next. Tying up these three and with Gina Philips cameo and closing monologue. Am ecstatic over the prospects of a part 4. Giving this movie a 3.75 out of 5.
By Paul Anthony
We are now approaching Halloween, in fact we are only a few days away now, so what is a better time to look at the big three horror icons remakes. For those who don’t know, we have reached ten years since the release of Rob Zombie Halloween film. At this point I was like wow it’s been ten years already, in this blog in honor of that we will look at what worked in that film and Friday the 13th and Nightmare on Elm and what didn’t work. We will start with Friday the 13th first and finish with Halloween last so let’s begin!
The previous decade was a roller coaster ride for Jason with release of Jason X which pretty much ruin him and made him into a joke, really Uber Jason get real. It did rebound with Freddy vs Jason which is the highest film in the Friday the 13th franchise, but they decided to reboot the franchise and six years later we got our next solo film. The film was supposed to be a true remake but instead become reimaging, they decided to do put four films into one, which was a smart idea, no need to have a franchise to go 8 or 9 movies deep with very little story. Showing Jason there witnessing his mother being killed made us give him just a little sympathy. Making him be quick and running was a homage to his debut in part two, which people forget about, and him wearing the bag then finding the mask was perfect. Now let’s add in the brother/sister storyline to give the film a story was much needed. Things that didn’t work pretty much the acting and writing and making the teens as dumb and horny as possible and I don’t understand making Jason so big which seems to be theme with horror remakes. We are now left with wonder what the next reboot will give us, if it will truly happen.
The following year in 2010, we saw another legend return and his name was Freddy, the first film not to feature Robert Englund which didn’t please fans at all, but having a new Freddy was needed, the film tone down the campy comedy and made the humor dark and dry which was much needed, after all it was supposed to be a nightmare not a dream. Outside of that it goes downhill, with the writing and acting and even changing the characters last names was just wrong. Then you got the use of CGI for Freddy instead using make up was a big letdown. Sure, the make up for Freddy was getting cheesy and truly so fake but still. At this point the franchise is on ice with no word of a sequel or a reboot.
Now let’s get to Michael shall we, 2002 we saw Halloween resurrection which just killed the franchise like Jason X did. Five short years later Rob Zombie stepped up and directed a film that brought Michael back to the spotlight. First giving us a little insight to his backstory helped us understand why he was the way he was and a look at his family though from the original his family was never that crazy which hurt the point he was trying to make about Michael upbringings. Rob has a style that is like no other and at times it can be a problem. Michael returning to get his mask made the mask that much more important and keeping it the same and creepy was a true plus on his part. A new view on Dr. Loomis was brighten having him be corrupted by the fame added a good twist onto the character. Now here was didn’t work, too much time on Michael back story, we don’t see the Michael we know until roughly an hour into the film which was too long not to feature him. Having Michael be a giant was big mistake, Michael was normal size and wasn’t that strong which truly made you afraid, this Michael however you just knew what he could do. Haddonfield being filled with crazy people truly made Michael seem like he was normal living in that town. Haddonfield was a nice little town, changing it just wasn’t right. This was Rob Zombie style, which made him famous, so you couldn’t expect any less. We are now waiting for the next Halloween film which is coming next year but this time John Carpenter returning and so is Jaimie lee Curtis, this film will be the part 3 that we never truly got, which makes us pumped for his return!
By Paul Anthony
Well it is that time again where we are going to cover some WWE stories that peaked our interest. Here in this blog we will cover the idea of Women’s tag titles, the recent break out of illnesses in the locker room and looking at survivor series. With a lot of information to discuss let’s get right to it.
First let’s consider the rumor of them starting a tag team title, which unlike the guys where they have two tag team champions, one for each show. In the woman’s case, there would only be one tag team for both shows despite the fact each show has their own woman’s championship. I am all for women getting their own tag team titles but I don’t believe this is the right time for it and here’s why. The biggest issue that there aren’t enough women to make a real tag team division, should they call up from NXT another large group of women for each brand then it can be different and let’s not forget they still don’t get enough TV time in my opinion. TNA has the same thing, they have the women’s title and the tag titles but even before the company became a dying company, they didn’t have enough women to make the division and it didn’t make sense and the titles soon became an afterthought. I’m not saying WWE will fall into that trap because currently they are doing good with the women’s titles but like I said before they need more women and give them more time.
Let’s move onto the illness situation that has hit the locker room, Roman Reigns, and Bray Wyatt and maybe even Kevin Owens. Roman has the mumps and Bray believed to suffer the same illness. This forced WWE to change the ppv TLC to feature AJ Styles who is on Smackdown go up against Finn Baylor and have Kurt Angle team with Dean and Seth to fight the Miz and his crew. Going forward depending on long Roman out this could change WWE plans with the shield, rumor is after Survivor Series the shield reunion would end with Dean turning heel which to me is a great idea, he’s character was always meant to be a heel more than a babyface.
With the brand split Survivor Series makes more sense you have the two brands duking it to see who is the better brand, the teams are shaping up and could we see the undertaker return? We know Kane seeking revenge against roman but will this all change if Roman isn’t back, I am not sure if we will see the undertaker at all if roman can’t go. The Long-term plan is to have Roman fight Brock for the title at WrestleMania. In the next few weeks the pictures should become more and more clear, right now though we have to take it day by day.
By: Justin Hopkins
It’s that wonderful time of year again. Where one can binge watch all of the scary movies one desires without people thinking their nuts. Not that is an issue. Some of the best movies and awesome female heroes come from the horror genre. As well as some of the most passionate fan base. With eleven days remaining and so many to watch; question becomes which movies to start with. Allow me to help, with my personal to 14 horror movies to watch before Halloween.
14 Silent Hill
By Video Game to Movie standards Silent Hill is a rare gem. The change from the male to female was a brilliant move. Radha Mitchell was great as Rose and the scene where she was chasing the girl through town and surrounded by monster was ripped entirely from the game it was based off of. Monsters were scary, inhabitants were unpredictable, and savage kill from the infamous Pyramid Head. Throw in the amazing Jodelle Ferland who played the innocence and horrifying sides of Alessa and this movie earned its spot on the list.
13 Childs Play
This year marked the return of Andy Barclay to the childs play world. No better time to return to how it all began. Watch how Charles Lee Ray became the good guy doll and turn Andy’s life into a nightmare. Throw in one of the great deaths as Dinah Manoff took a two story plunge.
12 Jeepers Creepers
I remember watching this as a kid, and terrified by the fact the monster won in the end. Creeper being an unstoppable force who was relentlessly pursued his victims. Gina Phillips and Justin Long had excellent chemistry and Johnston Breck etched his name into horror movie lore.
11 The Birds
The most unsettling part of this Alfred Hitchcock Masterpiece was the lack of a score. Without the hints of sounds cues to warn you. The violence and bird attacks catch you by surprise, and by the end leaves the audience in suspense over whether they’ll truly be safe again.
10 The Exorcist
What can one say about an all time great. The possessed Linda Blair scared an entire generation senseless. Everyone brought their best and delivered.
Despite the decades and all the different displays. None have topped that first chest burster scene. Alien set the bar in Sci-fi horror and gave rise to a phenomenal female hero Ellen Ripley.
Steven Spielberg took a rather common phobia and made it a rampant one. This was a freight filled roller coaster that didn’t let up till the end.
7 Friday the 13th part 2
As good as the first was, Halloween needs its Jason and part 2 is the way to go. The old school grunge feeling gives it a good charm and seeing Jason before his Hockey mask is an interesting change of pace.
An underrated horror movie in every facet of the word, with a powerful message of the dangers of seeking vengence. Lance Hendricks brought emotional turmoil as a Father desperate to seek vengence against those he blamed for his son’s death. Yet, discovered it came with a terrible price. Meanwhile Pumpkinhead is a everything on can want in a monster. Towering over his enemies and nothing can save his targets from his wrath.
5 The Omen
Down to the top 5 and in comes a classic. Showing a royal families decent into chaos and death as Gregory Peck struggling to find out what really happened the night his son died and if the child he was raising was really the Anti-Christ.
Robin Williams showed the world a genie that was helpful, fun loving jokester. Andrew Divoff reminded us why we should fear them. Performance was up there with the best. Intimidating and suave. Using people’s desires and wants against them and all they had to do was ask. Victims list read like a whose who of legendary horror actors including Robert Englund, Kane Hodder, Tony Todd and more.
3 Nightmare on Elm Street part 3
The first Nightmare was nearly perfect and this one was even better. Freddy once again going after the kids of the parents who killed him. Heather Langenkamp return as Nancy. Helping them learn their dream powers to fight off Krueger once and for all. With Robert Englund knowing Freddy so well by this point, able to flesh him out even more. Making this nightmare the one to scare you thus year.
2 Halloween Part 4
Kind of kneeling to tradition by putting Halloween on this list. Skip the cliche of the first and enjoy Part 4 instead.
1 John Carpenter’s The Thing
Hands down, The Thing is perfect for Halloween movie. Kurt Russell and Keith David at their finest. Claustrophobic, psychological, gory, jump scares and everything else included. The shocking finale leaving you in wonder and awe of the horror you watched. Making it the best horror movie of all time.
As with any list, this is purely opinionated, and that’s the best part. Hope my list can lead you to movies you haven’t seen yet. By all means comment your favorites in the comments. On that note, going to wrap it up with honorable mentions. All great picks, but borderline other genes to much to be included in this list.
Honorable Mentions: Predator – Aliens – Resident Evil Vendetta
By Paul Anthony
I know we are all sick and tired of hearing about the NFL drama but just when you thought the story was over, you learn it only keeps going and going. Let’s look back at how this drama started and find out when this saga could end, if there is an end in sight, so let’s start from the beginning.
We go back to August of 2016 during the preseason star quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers Colin Kaepernick was scene not standing during the national Anthem, now after the game he was asked about and he stated why, he did this as a protest the violence that was happening to African- Americans and the police. However, many people saw it was disrespecting the flag and the Military, after speaking with a friend who was a veteran, Colin was spotted taking a knee, instead of sitting and when he was asked why he stated that he wanted it to make it clear he wasn’t trying to disrespect the military. People at this point were still beyond frustrated with him, after the 2016 season Colin became a free agent which he is still currently a free agent. Some people believe he wasn’t signed because of this whole drama while others just disagree with that.
2017 season saw more players from different teams taking knees, the Cleveland browns was the first team to have all players take a knee. President Trump started to take notice and made comments, that shall we say wasn’t needed and only lit the fire even more. After His comments, the next weeks teams once again took knees and in the Pittsburgh Steelers case where they no showed for the anthem, well all but one came out.
At this point Jerry Jones who is the owner of the Dallas Cowboys said if they don’t stand then they don’t play referring to his team, the commissioner Roger Goodell held a meeting with everyone in the NFL, they discussed a range of issues but didn’t discuss the main issue of the taking the knee during the anthem….
Yes, the main topic wasn’t discussed which makes me think how pointless the meeting was and how clueless he truly is. The sad thing is we all use sports to escape the world we live and now it is showing up in our sports, we may agree or disagree with what they are doing but there needs to be something down, but what is the solution? Players can use other platforms to voice their options and do what they feel is right and just play the game, we all love the game and want to enjoy it and not think about the drama that we all must deal with.
I hope they realize this soon but I think at the same time Rodger Goodell will milk this and let the situation get worse before it gets better the fact is he should have called meetings and what not last year and act fast which he did not which only proves he has no clue what he is doing so with him and Trump and the players I don’t expect this mess to go away anytime soon.
By: Justin Hopkins
This past week was a great week for TV, as the Arrowverse has returned. Supergirl kicked things off Monday. Flash and DC Legends of Tomorrow followed on Tuesday, with Arrow premiering last night. Proving once again that the Arrowverse is DCs best. In each show you see actors actresses who give their all for their characters. Getting emotions, laughs, and awesome action sequences. This may be a ranked list, but even the show in last was still pretty good. That said, coming in at number 4
4. The Flash
Grant Gustion has been spectacular as Barry Allen. Everyone has been stellar, but this episode was kind of generic. Presenting an enemy that Cisco and Wally can’t stop. Who is demanding The Flash or hell destroy the city. Leaving them to have to bring Caitlin back to save Barry from the speed force prison. Who comes back crazed from his time there and the only thing to snap him out was when Iris was in jeopardy. By the numbers right up to the final fifteen minutes.
By showing Caitlin having trouble keeping Killer Frost persona under check and introducing The Thinker as the one behind the Samari and it was his goal to bring back The Flash. Having just with to save the episode from irrelevance.
This show had it all going for it. Supergirl in a dark depression over having sent away Mon El. Superman telling her how strong she was for making a choice he couldn’t have actually tore her down more then it helped. Doing everything in her power to live only as supergirl. No longer wanting to be Kara. Going all the way to quitting her job as reporter. Meanwhile her friends were tying to give her space. Alex growing nervous over her wedding, and learning it’s her Dad can’t walk her down the aisle. Creating a heartwarming moment when she asked J’onn J’onzz to do so.
The story was so well handled. Really believed National City was in trouble for a moment. Loved J’onn being the one to get through to Kara. With villain Edge and the newest Kryptonian starting to gain power. Set up to be remarkable season of Supergirl.
2. DC Legends of Tomorrow
This is hands down my personal favorite show in the Arrowverse. Great ensemble of characters that are fun and deep. Feeling like a family. Masterful turn for Rory from villain to Anti-hero. Coming off a great cliffhanger and promise of Constantine to appear later. Was definetly hyped and loved episode one.
Turning Rip into a bit of an adversary was a stroke of genius. Appearing as head of the Time Bureau to clean up the anarchism. Disbanding the legends entirely. The split showed them failing at moving on, and when Rory bumps into Julius Caesar in Aruba. They jumped at the chance to reunite and show Rip they deserve their jobs back. Stealing the Waverider and set out to put Caesar back. Making one slip that proved costly. Yet when the Time Bureau walked into a trap. They were quick to jump in and save the day.
This show keeps improving. The team keeps improving with laughs and emotions. Lining up to perhaps build up more chemistry between Sara and Rory. With Rip and Agent Sharp proving to be more of a roadblock. Holding back important information on an impeding danger. This may well outshine the rest, and missed out the number one slot by an eyelash.
The patriarch of the Arrowverse has seen it’s fair share of lows and highs throughout its run. Coming off a finale that showed helplessly watching the island blow up with his team on it. Season six had to hit on an emotionally charged one. Giving us just that and a shocker of an end.
Opening with Oliver taking down Faust, back in Star City. Using their flash back method to tell who died and who survived. Oliver’s grief and desperate search of the devastated island. Deathstroke leading him to his comatose sister. Samantha stumbling over. Surviving just long enough for him to promise to be a Father to his son. Everyone else survived, but Diggle is so shaken up he unable to hold his gun, William blaming Ollie for his Mother’s Death, and Ollie torn up by grief of his Sister. Also alive and gunning for vengence is the Black Siren after being shot and left for dead by Quentin. Show lining up to end on a happy note of hope between Oliver and William when they dropped a bomb, in the form of the news showing a picture of Oliver dressed as the Green Arrow.
An explosive, emotional roller coaster of a way to kickstart the sixth season. Leaving us to wonder who saved Laurel and what will happen now that his secret has been exposed.
The Arrowverse is alive and exciting as ever. Plenty of room to grow. Can’t wait to see how they all play out.
By Paul Anthony
Just last week the entertainment industry got rocked hard and that is no punt intended but last Thursday a story broke about Harvey Weinstein, some of us may have never heard of him while others have, you may recognize the last name and both are one. Harvey was the co-founder of Miramax and the Weinstein company, which have produce number of movies. But last week a story broke that accused Harvey of sexual harassing and assaulting and even raping women over three decades.
On October 5th, Megan Twoney and Jody Kantor published an Expose in the New York times accusing Harvey of these crimes and five days later, American writer Ronan farrow who is the son of Woody Allen stated the number of women was 16. 13 of them were harassed while the other 3 were raped, he also stated that he wanted to break the news sooner but his company NBC News told him not to. A Possible cover up there just maybe. Because of this Harvey wife of ten decided it was enough and left him.
You may ask why are we hearing about this just now? In these reports, it was stated that Harvey spent a lot of money either paying the women off either in a settlement or on his own behave. Some actresses reported that when they turned Harvey down, he would drop them from any projects that they were in. However, two very large profile actresses came forwarding claiming Harvey of harassing them, those two are Angelina Jolie and Gwyneth Paltrow. Brad Pitt stated he had tell Harvey to back off from his wife.
Many politicians, who Harvey donated to are now sending his donations to women organizations. Now Weinstein’s lawyer Lisa Bloom stated that her client denies any of the wrong doing that he is accused of but from criticism, Lisa announced that she would not be representing Harvey any longer, which as quit as she left, his new lawyer Charles Harder would be suing both the New Yorker and Times for causing this mess.
Rather he truly sues or not is a different story but the damage has been done. He was fired from the company that he helped started and his wife left him in a hurry, his public imagine is ruin and I am. This might cause a ripple in Hollywood because many actresses are speaking up while the actors who have worked with Harvey are staying silent or saying no comment, which maybe ticking the women off. This story is new and big so I am sure more details will come out as we get deeper into this.
By Paul Anthony
Let me start by saying I am a sports fan, I always have been and always will but the one sport I struggle to watch or even root for is Soccer, I don’t know if it’s because Pittsburgh doesn’t have a team just yet in the MLS but overall soccer which ranks as the number one sport in the world but here in north America it struggles to remain number 5 or 6 depending on NASCAR, but we want the league to grow and we hope it continue to grow. Usually viewership gets higher when the US National team does well in the World Cup or in the Olympics but this past Tuesday USA soccer took a step back and failed to qualify for next year world cup for the first time since 1986 and gets worse, much worse.
First let’s start with saying all they had to do was tie and they would be in but they couldn’t even do that and the worst part is they lost to the 99th ranked team in the competition. That’s right the US team lost 2-1 to Trinidad and Tobago which is one team by the way. This truly had to be a dark day for soccer now the team must wait until the next World Cup in Qatar in 2022. Even the MLS issued a statement saying this truly was a major setback for Soccer in the US.
No doubt this truly a dark time but for how long will it remain this way? Well let’s look a head the next Match the Us National team will play will be in 2019 in the CONCACAF Gold Cup then the following year will be the Olympics, so will two years be enough to reverse this trend? Because let’s be honest, this is a trend they were on for years. They peaked in 2002 but since that they failed to make 2012 and 2016 Olympics and now this.
Is talent really on the way? We like to think so we currently have a 19-year-old star in Christian Pulisic and there are others 19-year-old that are on the rise who should be tested and ready to go by 2022 but will this be enough?
I sure hope so because in the end I would see Soccer succeed but I doubt it will if the national team doesn’t step it up I believe ratings and viewership will fall and damn near kill the sport.
By Paul Anthony
In 1993 a Disney movie was released it was called Hocus Pocus, now the film wasn’t a hit in fact, it was nearly a flop. The budget was 28 million and the film only grossed 35 million. But like many films now it became a cult classic and had its own fan base, years began to pass and fans started to scream we want a sequel and it never happened. Recently rumors came up and it seems like part would finally be happening, well we all jumped the gun, it is true another film is finally happening but it’s not what we all want.
That is right Disney announced that another film was happening in the form of a remake and it gets better, it will better, it will be a TV Movie on their Disney channel. We know in a remake that there will be a new cast redoing the story but we haven’t heard if the original cast will make cameos but is this what we really wanted?
I truly haven’t watch anything new on the Disney channel, it seems like that channel has lost its steam with making good movies on that channel. I remember hits like Halloween town and High school musical and so on but nowadays the hits aren’t there and they want to do a film that people been dying for? This is a big risk, now Disney does a lot right with their films, I don’t think anyone can deny that but as Disney grew I believe the channel has become an afterthought. Now maybe it’s their way of getting people back to watching that channel. As much as I don’t want this remake to happen, when they release it I will be watching it, to see how good or bad it truly is.
Now I am disappointed that there won’t be a true sequel but at times when I watched the first film I wonder if Disney wanted to do a sequel they would have. I watched and I realize that the film was clear with being a one-time thing. We live in an era where fans want a sequel when there doesn’t need to be one. This is where remakes come in so studios can change some things around so they can produce those part two and threes.
So, what can we expect? Well the channel now caters to the young audience more than ever so expect the comedy to be for kids and forget the horror. Needless to say I think this film will disappoint us more than anything but hey we wanted it right?