By Paul Anthony
Some actors just don’t know how to let go of an franchise that they made famous and this in this case with this film. Sylvester Stallone, made two big franchises in the late 70’s and all of the 80’s and we have to thank him for that. We know why they made Rocky Balboa which came out in 2006 and the film proved to be a modest success which I guess what made him decide to do the other franchise and that was Rambo with the 2008 filmed titled Rambo. Now once again the film was a modest success like Balboa but more importantly the film gave Rambo an ending, because he finally returned home and you knew there didn’t need to be any other ending. After Rocky Balboa, they took the series in a new direction which worked, it was only natural for them to attempt to bring Rambo back and it truly wasn’t needed. The reviews and ratings were the worse in the series and the gross was the lowest of the series and the story was random and put together, only thing that made movie watchable was just the violence for the gore fans.
The events take place 11 years after John returned home, which he manages the farm with an old friend and her granddaughter. Gabriela one day decides to visit her real father who left them when she was younger. Her friend reveals his whereabout which is in Mexico but after her father tells her harshly he doesn’t care about them, she storms off and hits the club and there she is drugged and kidnapped by the cartels. Rambo gets the word that she is trouble and goes and finds her which after the cartels beats him up and he recovers, he then finds her but she dies of an overdose which she is buried on his farm. Cartels wanting revenge because Rambo killed one of the main brothers the other brother raids Rambo’s ranch but Rambo rigged it and killed every single body that showed and cut the heart out of the other brother and Rambo vows to fight for the greater good.
Here we have only one good thing to say about this movie is the gore which is sad but when you have an very old actor who can’t move like he use to then you have rely on something else and that is the graphics. To me the story felt random, I know we are told that John has a close relationship with these people but we never really sorry it and that is the problem no character development and the movie falls apart from there. I know they maybe want to do a prequel which is fine but nothing besides that or a reboot. In the end I am giving it a C for grade, just an average film.
By Paul Anthony
In every generation there are actors that everything they do is gold and they start to show up in everything and boom they still the show for years to come and right now it is Kevin Hart’s time to touch everything and have it turn to gold. That is just one aspect because for a movie to work you need another person and that other person is Ice Cube who can do magic as well at times. Hart has been around but mostly doing stand ups and making cameos then slowing in a supporting role then made his way to being a main star. In 2014 was one of his first true main role in Ride Along which made 154 million from a 25 million dollar budget you knew a sequel was coming and two years later, we got Ride Along 2. The budget was bigger at 40 million but the profit was lower at 124 million nevertheless it made money, when the profit is lower than the first film, you have to wonder why because there are always more than 1 factor in a lot of cases.
Lets talk about the plot, the film picks up sometime after the events of the first film. Ben played by Hart is now a rookie cop but is at home helping to plan for his wedding. James who is played by Ice Cube is working another big case which he must go to Miami to solve the case which by convincing their LT, Ben gets to go with him to prove he is more than a joke, Now being James’ partner he dubs them the Brothers In Law. Which James can’t stand but in Miami they come across an important hacker played by Ken Jeong who has information to help them but they quickly learn this isn’t a easy task because the main bad guy is a high end person with a lot of connections which he uses to slow them down but nevertheless the brothers in law solves the case and Ben gets home in time for the wedding.
There was no doubt that the laughs did come in this film with the three top stars. However they could have used a few more jokes to keep the laughs going but with these buddy cop films there needs to be some seriousness some where which divides the fans up a little. the action was another case where it just needed to be more to help carry the laughs. The biggest highlight has to be their little twist with the high speed car chase in which Ben uses turn signals to make his turns only to use it against the people that are chasing them. Car chases are too common in films and it is nice to see something different in them. I believe the movie didn’t do as well as the first because one it wasn’t that much better then the first film but also Star Wars returned to the big screen and that film took a lot of the market. In the end I am giving it a B for a grade because A lot of magic was there but it just needed so much more!
By Paul Anthony
Here we are about to talk about a movie that just couldn’t get released. The Movie kept getting pushed back and back. This film was suppose to come out in August of 2019 but then got pushed to January of 2020 then to March then to April but then this virus happened and it seemed like this film was doomed but then Amazon bought the rights to the film so the move goers could see this film and the film got a home release. The question I always have is if this film was released how much would it make? Truth is the budget was a low 18 million for this comedy and it did gross when it could overseas a nice 5.5 million. Comparing this film with Dave Bautista other film Stuber I would ball park around 30 million. Now Stuber was considered a failure with being an summer time film, which could have been the reason why this film was moved out of the summer. So how good was this film? Well the truth be told this film was on par with Stuber, except this was more aimed at families rather than just adults, so if you liked that film than you will like this film as well.
The film revolves around JJ who was a former Special Forces soldier who became a spy for the CIA. It is clear that though he was a great soldier, he not a good spy. We seen this in the opening scenes when he blurs out information that he didn’t receive unless he was a spy. The one thing he can do is fight and blow stuff up which is how he makes it out a live. After returning to the headquarters and it seems like he did a good thing he is told by his boss that though he did good with fighting , he didn’t get any information that was truly needed and is told that maybe being an spy just not for him but is given a easy mission in Chicago with his new partner. His Mission is to watch a family of a criminal they have their eye on, simple enough right? Soon as they get to Chicago he comes across the niece of the Criminal and his cover is blown but she manages to blackmail him as long as he serves a father figure and teach her how to become a spy. The adventures that he does with the girl brings the laughs of course and they even save the day together and when the mission is over, he decides to return to Chicago to live with her and her mother who he began to have feelings for towards the end of the film.
This film had some cheap laughs but you couldn’t figure out who the audience should be because it wasn’t meant for kids but wasn’t meant for adults either. Some things wee just too out of place for me to really like but enjoyed Bautista and glad to see he is growing as an actor. In the end I am giving this film an C for a grade. It felt average to me and honestly can’t say more about it.
By Paul Anthony
Okay the title says it all but I am going to recap because it has been a while. For starters let’s go back to last August when the film Fast and Furious Presents Hobbs and Shaw came out. Now I am not the biggest fan of spinoffs because at times they are just not needed, not every character needs a spin off to tell a story. I think we can all agree with that. Anyway, here we are dealing with a spinoff, with two characters who have become popular in a franchise because of who plays them. Still I had no interest in seeing the film, so I did a mock review which I based everything on trailers and word of mouth and I ended up giving the film a D for a grade and said that I wouldn’t give it a higher grade then that. So I finally I had time to watch it because I wondered if I had changed my mind. I will give my grade at the end of the blog like always. The film however proved to be a hit because it grossed 760.0 million off a of a budget of 200 million, once again you wanted the gross to be higher but you will take the victory and this film gave us some good feuds with the cast of the franchise as well. Because of the money that the film made, there will be a sequel down the road.
The plot is pretty much what we came to expect from a Fast and Furious film. Hobbs and Shaw are recruited by the CIA to stop a terrorist group who basically made technology to enhance humans to make them cyborgs of sorts and kill off the weaker humans with a virus, the lead villain who is played by Idris Elba is the first of his kind and proves to be a much bigger threat to Hobbs and Shaw. At this point Shaw’s sister Hattie implants the virus in her to stop if from getting into the bad guys hands. The gang goes a few rounds with the villains until they win with some over the top action and removes the virus from Hattie and gives it to CIA which they put it in lockdown. Hobbs returns home and shows his family his daughter and everyone is reunited because Hobbs at some point had beef with his family.
The biggest problem I had with this film was it is part of the Fast and Furious, they failed to explain why the rest of the team wasn’t around because you know the team always around to save the world. With a spin off comes adding a story to the characters that messes up the backstory that we already know, like Hobbs family history or Shaw’s history and how he’s actually a good guy and everything like that and of course Shaw has a baby sister who we never knew about and as for Owen they barely mention anything about him even in flashback scenes. Here are some of the things that I did like about the film, the comedy and action with The Rock and Jason Statham then add in cameos from Ryan Reynolds and Kevin Hart was a good touch, no doubt having the four of these guys as leads in a film would be a hit. In the end I am giving it a higher grade, It’s going from a D to an C and if you want good laugh with action sure this could be your film to watch.
By Paul Anthony
I have to say many people have dreamed about becoming an astronaut and heading into space. In fact that was a dream of mine to be a space traveler one day before I started write and enjoy that as well. It is no doubt very hard to go into space, the training you have to go through is like no other. Most of the people that work for NASA was in some sort of military before they join NASA. Now even after the physical training, the learning process is hard because one false move and that is all it takes. We can look at NASA history in that department and it is not very good. Even one death is way too many to go exploring the galaxy.
Now we get into another field and that is acting, we know that people to get a role or train for a role is no easy task. If you are an action star staying fit and well kept shape is very important, yes even with green screens and such there are times where you got to do something that involves running, lifting and even fighting and that takes a lot of work, I don’t anyone will doubt that. We have seen many good movies about space and even missions that have gone wrong. Some of my favorite realistic space movies include Apollo 13, Gravity and The Martian. Here is the thing though, yes they were about space but those people were never in space but then news broke that Tom Cruise would do a movie in space not in studio about space and even NASA confirms this.
Tom Cruise may not be everyone favorite actors but he is one of the few people in Hollywood that does most if not all his own stunts and that is something you have to respect the guy for doing and I am sure Justin would disagree but look at Hollywood as a whole and you have him Tom that respect at least. Tom has suffered injuries on set before and even suffered an injury well filming Mission Impossible 7. However Space is a little different much different to be honest. As of right now we don’t know what this film is and if he will even start filming it but this film would be the first true film in space!
Now we don’t know if this trip will be one scene or the entire film. More details will come out as soon as life returns to normal of course. I know this will be dangerous and it is a big risk he is taking to make whatever film he wants to make. With this being history in the making I hope that the film will be good and not a flop because no doubt that is movie will cost a pretty penny, heck it could be one of the most expensive films ever made regardless if it is one scene or not. Training will have to start soon because even with astronauts they train for months just to do one mission. If this film is to be made I have to say I am excited to see this film and what happens next!
By Paul Anthony
The things I love besides entertainment is history and science. What if there was a movie that was good but also was about history and it was an adventure movie. Well that is what we got for this weekend edition of Saturday Sequel. Today we are going to be talking about the 2007 hit film National Treasure: Book of Secrets. the has the cast from the first film pretty much intact from the first film. The film stars Nicolas Cage, Justin Bartha, Diane Kruger, Jon Voight and Harvey Keitel. The film takes place a short time after the events of the first film. Once again these films peaked my interest because of how they blend their own history with real history. The film made a good amount of money which is a great sign, the total gross was nearly 458 million dollars compared to the first film which made 348 million. The budget was bigger but only by 30 million, in which the budget was 130 million to the film which was 100 million. You would like the grosses to be a little higher than 500 million but Disney can afford it as long as they make their money back.
Here we are back in the civil war era when the film starts, two men one of which is John Wilkes Booth, they ask Thomas Gates to decode a message in which he does but when he realizes what the message is he decides to burn it, which angers the men and they shoot him in which he tells his son clues to what the message was and of course Booth shoots President Lincoln. They fast forwarded to modern day where Patrick and Ben is giving a speech about that situation. They get interrupted by Mitch who is another treasure hunter, that needs to find the city of gold, decides to convince people in which does that Thomas Gates was apart of the group that planned for Lincoln to be killed. This was a trick to get Ben to search for the city of gold, which he does. He pieces together clues from the White House and London and even France that leads him to Mount Rushmore where that mountain is a cover up of the city of Gold. The problem is Mitch isn’t a good guy here, he’s the bad guy that makes his money in the black Market, so he attacks Ben’s family in every sense to get Ben to work for him in which he does. In the final moments when they find the city which is rigged with traps, Mitch shows his better sign telling Ben he just ruined their family’s name to get his help to find this place and allows them to go by sacrificing his life so the crew can get out alive and return Ben informs the president that Mitch deserves the credit as well as him.
The Movie may have not been the best of it’s kind but it did enough, sure I do believe more action scenes may have helped the film a little more but for a Disney film that reached all families I have to say they did a good job overall I am giving this film a high B. if you find something to knock about go ahead because there is much! Part 3 was finally announced, so I am curious to see what they will do with part three, just sad it took this long to announced it!
By Paul Anthony
I heard that this film was becoming so big on Netflix that it wasn’t funny and then I was told it was must watch film. Now when people say it is must watched film, they are either right or they are wrong. Extraction must confuse people because in the end I don’t know if it is a fully must watch film. The film stars Chris Hemsworth, who is no doubt a big time star and his star power continues to grow and it may grow even more because of this film. Yet I am not ready to say this was a great movie. It was one of those movies where you liked things about it but had no clue what is going on.
The biggest issue really with this movie is the plot and the fact that there is no plot. Okay so this movie is about a drug lord trying to kill his rival’s son who is still in high school at least that is how he looks. Chris’s character is hired to protect the boy and the battle begins as they try to get him to safety but this drug lord is powerful and has the police and the military on his side, in the epic battle they manage to save the boy but it appears at the cost of losing Chris’s character. The film ends with the drug lord getting shot in the head and the boy swimming and being at peace.
I want to say that I missed something in the plot but the truth is that was basically the plot. Now I will say each person in this film did what they could with what they had. So I admire that aspect of the movie. The action was the big reason why many people flocked to see this film and the action did live up to what people are saying about it. The fights were basic which is nice in the time where we have CGI making the fights so much more dramatic and fast.
As I mention before the plot was way too basic and here is another problem, when you have a weak plot that also means the character development takes a hit as well. Truth is I had no clue who these characters were. All I knew was that the boy needed protection. It wasn’t until after the fact I realize why he was so important. This film may have strictly relied on Chris’s star power and the word mouth that this was a must see film. Sadly in the end this wasn’t a must see film and in fact Michael Bay action films had more of a story to it and that says something right there. I will say that because of the action and performance I love to see if they can make a much better sequel, which was already announced. They give me a plot that makes sense and develop the characters then we got a must see film. I am giving this film a C for a grade.
By Paul Anthony
You ever come a cross a sequel that you never knew was a round or even imagine that there would be one regardless of how it was released? Yeah that is exactly what happen to me. So lets start from the beginning to explain everything a little better here. The film I am reviewing here is Bulletproof 2. Which is the sequel to 1996 flop that starred Damon Wayans and Adam Sandler in which the film was a buddy cop movie that was just a waste of time. The film manage to gross 22 million dollars in 1996 but their rotten tomato score was only 8 percent, which means no one liked it. Now here we are 24 years later talking about the sequel which came out earlier this year but a direct to video release. Before I talk about the plot for this film I have to say it took me a minute to realize that the two main characters from the first film are in this film as well just not played by Wayans and Sandler instead they are replaced by Faizon Love and Kirk Fox. To the film’s credit they recast the people with two people that would match up with the previous actors in the sense of comedians and so forth. Usually I start with saying if this film has the magic of the first film but the problem here is the first film didn’t have magic, so could this film be any worse? You said yes then you would be somewhat right and let me explain in just a second.
The plot was pretty much on point with the first film. Carter has to go undercover to solve a case which he uses his old pal Archie Moses name but then things get a little crazy and he actually needs Moses to join him. Things go according to plan except when there is a crack in the foundation and Moses rats them both out thinking he would be saved but instead the bad guys or bad women won’t no loose ends. Nevertheless the film has Carter getting shot in the head again but this time Moses sticks by his side until he awakes from his coma which was just a month and Moses departs wishing his friend the best.
Pretty simple plot like I said, well the actor was okay at best but the comedy really wasn’t there. They were trying too hard to be funny and the laughs weren’t there much like the first film. One of the bigger issues I had was the nudity in the film. It took direct to video back a step. This isn’t the late 90’s where these films had to that to get the attention of audience. In the end I am actually giving this film a F for failure because it was pointless to even make this film and if you were going to make this film then the point was make it better than first film which wasn’t hard but in this case I must rather watch the first film then this.
By Paul Anthony
We are marching towards April and yes we are all locked up in our house and we totally forgot that it was Women’s Month and there are so many good movies that represent women in such a strong light and one of the roles that I grew up on was of course the Resident Evil franchise when it first came out way back in 2002. So I wanted to revisit that franchise for this blog. The first film was a big hit, the budget was 33 million and the movie ended up making nearly 103 million dollars and 70 million dollar profit. It is only natural that a franchise would soon start and just two years later we got a sequel. Like all the other films that are sequels, the budget became bigger increasing to 45 million but the good news is that fans wanted to see this film and the numbers increased to 130 million for a total gross and profit of 85 million which was a 15 million increase over the previous film but was it worth it?
Let’s talk about the plot, the film picks up directly where the first film left with Alice being caption and then tested on and when she wakes after amount of time that is wasn’t made clear Raccoon City had to deal with the outbreak and crazy enough, the city was locked up and quarantine from the rest of the country. Once Alice wakes up and escapes she learns what happens to the city. Along the way she meets and befriends other survivors who want to escape and expose the truth to the rest of the world. Well of course Umbrella doesn’t wan the truth to get out there, so they set out to kill all those who want to expose them. However a higher member of Umbrella lost his daughter and wants Alice and her friends to find his daughter and he will give them a way out. of course the fight begins but Alice manages to find the little girl. It is revealed that her father made the virus for her so she could be able to walk and grow like a normal child but the T Virus was taken from him and misused but at the same time he also created a anti-virus as well which his daughter has. When the final fight happens Alice has to go up against her old friend Matt who also bonded with the virus but mutated into some form of a monster though he and her are actually being controlled however they gave her free reigns so she doesn’t know and the fight is pretty much even until Alice gets the slight upper hand but she stops when she realizes who the monster is and Matt regains control and turns on Umbrella saving Alice but then the bomb drops and we learn once again Alice survives and is recused by her friends who also survived and the movie ends when the audience learns Umbrella wanted her to escape.
Well I have to say the movie was a slight improvement over the first film and did a good job at introducing more of the game characters like Jill. They gave us a story that we could get behind with learning what the outbreak was and so forth and they gave us that little thing with having Alice be some type of program and super human. I got to say I did enjoy the action mixed with Mike Epps comedy to switch it up. Certain things like that can go a long way. In the end I have to say I am giving this film a good 90 percent or a good A and I have to say it is one of my favorite sequels so far!
By Paul Anthony
Netflix is no doubt is becoming bigger and bigger and with that being said, they are recruiting big time people in the game but they also are starting to recruit big time directors. Michael bay is one of those directors. Here we have a big budget film which the budget is around 150 million and the film was lead by Ryan Reynolds and even have Dave Franco in the film as well though his character doesn’t survive long, sadly he is the first member to get killed and that is pretty much it for him with this film.
Now the plot is basic which you can understand for a Michael bay film, basically you have people who have fallen off the face of the earth or ” die” and become “ghosts” as they call themselves and they go off and fight crimes to make the world a better place. The group is led by Ryan who goes by the name of one, which is the rule of the group. they don’t know anyone’s real name they just go by numbers which means they don’t have ties to each other and that means less emotions when someone dies. Though that aspect goes out the door because 4 teammates start to date each other which One finds out later. In short the group loses just one member which One recruits another member and he becomes number 7. they train for what will be their first true mission and in the end they succeed and part of the rules are when the mission is over they part ways until they are needed again and so they do.
Now like I said this a bay film so it had no real story but his bread and butter is the action. Now with that being said and with the budget the action scenes were a big step in the right direction for Netflix. I know they operate a little different because I often think how would this film do making money if it was release in theaters. Well From a 150 million dollar budget and the time it was actually released and most of the reviews I would say you would be looking at around 500 million dollar movie which would make it some what of a successful film. Now the question becomes how would I rate this film? With everything I just said I do think it wasn’t a bad film. The story doesn’t make you over think about the plot and it’s simple and the action was there enough to overcome everything else. In the end I am giving it 70 percent. It was average film in my eyes, now am I curious for a sequel, yes I am but we shall!