I get so excited over anything Madea. Seriously, Madea Goes To Jail, Madea’s Christmas. Everything. Just give me my Aunt Madea. I was surprised that it took so long for them to get to Halloween. If we’re at the point where we’re getting a Star Wars film once a year, why can’t Tyler Perry do that with this Madea? Don’t say overkill- there are eight Policy Academy movies.
There are some big name Youtubers in this movie. Or so I’ve been told. I had no idea. It’s not a blink and you’ll miss them situation, the whole high school kids scenes was overdone and gimmicky. Beyond the cheesy acting it was so forced. I started thumb tapping waiting for them to get back to Madea and her gang of friends. At least they were believable, body suits and all.
The premise of the movie is Perry’s character paid to babysit to keep a teenage girl from going to a Halloween party. While staying in the house, ghoulish things start happening. You get the feeling you wondered into on the Scary Movie episodes. The thing is, it’s not just cornball scary, it’s funny Madea angry fight back scary. Cassi Davis who plays Aunt Bam and reactionary funny. Patrice Lovely (Hattie) gave fascial jestures that played well off Madea.
These three along with Perry playing multiple characters are the movie. The sprinkled in Youtubers are here to bring the internet kids, but don’t make too much of them. I just wish they were written in to be funny and less annoying.
Who’s going to see this movie? The Madea and Scary Movie fans. Throw in anyone that wants to laugh at your scared aunt for over an hour.
If Felicity Jones does nothing else with this trailer maybe she’ll put to rest the whole filler Star Wars episode rants. First thing, this is how you cut a preview. We finally get to see who is Jones, why is she part of the rebellion, all with a micro-second of Darth Vader.
Introduced is Jyn Erso’s father? Who is he? The likelihood is that he’s not part of the rebellion. Star Wars has always grabbed us with the father storylines. It’s done so well. Even in episode seven we’re still trying to search our brain for Rey’s parents. (My money is on her being the daughter of Erso and Skywalker.)
Next to plot is the supporting characters Riz Ahmed, Diego Luna, and Donnie Chen. She needs this to make the movie a standalone and not a mere prequel. Erso even has a brother that’s revealed through casting but not the trailer.
So far so good. The movie stealer look to be Vader. We get him for a second and he might be two minutes in the whole movie but his absence in seven set us up for this anticipation. December sixteenth, people. You’ve been warned.
Max. Steel. Let me confront the problem with this story- there isn’t one. Max and Steel don’t have a comic book background. He is a toy from Mattel. That’s it. The hardware coming before the story wouldn’t be a problem if Mattel hired a few comic book writers and illustrators and gave their property an actual Disney finish. What they did do in the 90s, was slap together a very basic comic book to promote the figurine.
Then came the tv series. Now, they were actually giving their character better plots and a legitimate villain. The issue- it’s a choppy story that you’re promoting to a movie.
The skeleton story revolves around Max McGrath. Teenage boy struggling with his own identity, who doesn’t know the story of his father, comes into universal strength with an alien sidekick, who helps him channel is power. Sound familiar? Yeah, that’s the problem. If you’re going to write a very generic story there needs to be interesting characters, shocking villains, and a plot that blows everything away. But when you’re coming from no comic book structure, that isn’t even possible.
Ben Winchell (Max McGrath) did a good job with the script he was given. He can’t rewrite his character. The movie’s savior is Josh Brener (Steel). If it’s not going to be a well written comic book movie, at least it’s funny. He looks like a futuristic drone but sounds like the snowman from Frozen.
When you watch the trailer, you’re given the impression this is from the Marvel or DC universe. Don’t kid yourself. This is a Disney Channel movie with an overdose of CGI and a good budget. With that budget came a solid fight scene and visually appealing morphing. That’s ten minutes out of an hour and thirty.
I wanted to love Max Steel, but it’s not a total mess. The visuals are great where the story is muddy. The fight scenes are strong. It’s the story that comes off as bland and that can’t carry the movie.
Who is going to see this movie? Anyone that came from the animated series. This is your movie. If you’re coming from a comic book fandom, remember it’s no Guardians of the Galaxy.
Ah, here comes 20th Century Fox with trying to mastermind the next franchise series. Initially, I thought, they are going to treat this as Xmen: Cousins Edition. They almost went there. You could feel the beginning of this movie being guided that way, but it didn’t last long. In the middle of the first act, the movie began to shake off the impostor syndrome.
Miss Peregrine’s Home for Particular Children is a stellar book- with solid characters and writing. What Tim Burton has a problem doing is telling that story with Tim Burton cinematography. The first two acts become painfully generic. Over formulated. Being Tim Burton he could have experimented with structure and saved the pacing. If he had, then we could have still chastised him for his diversity in film comments but praised his originality in the film. Neither happens.
The story is about Jake, who doesn’t fit in to his life outside this island for special powered kids, but doesn’t think he’s weird enough to be one of them. In the book, it does a great job of him not coming off as broodish, just out of place. When he meets Miss Peregrine, he still an outsider and that’s a good story the book tells. You belong when you’re comfortable with yourself first. No magical house will fix it. In the movie, Asa Butterfield just gives off a very meh feeling. Meh to meeting new people, meh at their powers, meh at his role in the house. I don’t blame Butterfield, I blame Burton because I’m sure that was the direction. Don’t convey too much. Be the white wall. I’m telling you, the invisible boy was more interesting.
Your entire ticket price is going to Eva Green and Samuel L. Jackson. Green wasn’t the female Xavier, she is the leader of the misfits. The last thing you need in the movie is to be reminded of how badly Fox destroyed the Xmen series. Green puts a little big of herself in the character, with the winks and the mannerisms. You didn’t feel that in the book, but you do feel her the actor. It’s not detracting and serves well. Jackson doesn’t appear until the third act. He lifts the movie to a place that you wished had come in the second act. The middle dragged and saving everything for the end of the movie is a waste of film and time. There’s also a great fight scene towards the end that would have been good with a mild prequel early on. Something to make you salivate. Instead there are parts of the movie where you’re just waiting.
I can’t end this review without talking about the children. Bronwyn is a giggling mini Hulk. Fiona is underestimated. My favorite is the sheer creepiness of the twins.
Who is going to see this movie? Anyone across the demographic that read the book. Also Tim Burton fans. Is this more preteen? Yes, but so was Harry Potter and the Hunger Games and they picked up a huge chunk of the 18-34 movie goers. Is it as great as The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe? Nope, but still not as stale as Twilight.
Let me make something clear, it’s between Rogue One and Suicide Squad for movie of the year. There are no other contenders.
I go into every comic book movie hoping for the best but preparing for the worst. See Game of Thrones and X-Men for further clarification. If you come from the original source of work you know how disappointing translations can be. While that’s fine for 90 percent of moviegoers, the 10 percent of readers lived with these characters long before a camera came along and should be respected.
The comic book movie to beat is Watchmen. There’s no better translation and when it came to keeping gritty. Sorry Margot Robbie you just couldn’t compete with Malin Akerman. Not overtaking Watchmen doesn’t hurt Suicide Squad’s overall appeal.
DC needed a win. Batman vs Superman wasn’t terrible but the writing relied way too much on fight scenes. You’ve got two of the most interesting people in the universe and you need CGI to carry a movie. Suicide doesn’t fall for that cheap mistake.
Ninety percent of the movie is Harley Quinn (Robbie), Deadshot (Will Smith), and Joker (Jared Leto). Ninety percent of the movie between those three is Quinn. This hurts the movie. Not because Robbie can’t act because she’s a stellar Clown Princess, the problem is where is Enchantress? Her role not only gets stunted, it’s depleted. You forget she’s there. Katana’s role isn’t a complete afterthought, but even most of her scenes get thrown to Deadshot.
Will Smith can act. This is not a movie for beginners. Thankfully Smith can bring it, some of the writing in this movie between him and Harley sets up for things later to come. (Cough cough).
You’re either going to love or hate The Joker. Honestly, I think most of you are going to hate him. Not because he can’t act- but be honest, you want Heath Ledger. Which is fine, I get it, but penalizing Leto isn’t right. Joker has to be unpredictable and psychotic. Master those two things and you can build upon him. Leto did that. Plus he gave great face in the movie. Classic Joker.
I have no intention of watching How To Get Away With Murder, but Viola Davis makes me a believer. She was a strong without being nasty component to the movie. Her character is unlikable. Her screen time limited. She along with Joel Kinnaman pulled off being backbones to the movie.
There was the villain? Are you sure because I know there were fighting against someone and it could have been the wide receiver for the Patriots and I’d be none the wiser. That’s where the biggest fail of this movie is. Our anti-heros become our good guys so now you need to write someone annoying that I want eliminated. Good writing could have solved this in minutes. Good shooting could have made me felt something. Honestly, I left the movie forgetting they were fighting against someone. It felt like fighting for the sake of explosions.
The big three take care of that. Deadshot, Harley Quinn, and Joker, overtake Killer Croc plot so you’re absorbed with their action scenes. It works but Captain America does a better job at plot structure.
Forget all that. This movie is still a wild, upside down ride! The first twenty minutes you get the character’s backstory and then hold on because it’s go time.
Duffies out of 5: 4.5. Fun. Well acted. Glorious fight scenes.
Viewer Demo: Comic Book fans and everyone in-between. Look for readers to be more critical which they should be.