Aladdin (Press-screening review)

Director; Guy Ritchie
2h 8 minutes
Disney Live Action/Adventure/Family
Swedish premiere; May 22end

The middle eastern tale brought from the Thousand and a night saga – one who inspired the Disney animated version that came out in 92.
Now, several years later, we get to once again rediscover magic carpets, genies, and forbidden love.
Aladdin, the story about two completely different worlds colliding into one – a street boy and an Arabian princess who can only marry a prince. Despite their faith, they meet and change the written rules, proving once again that love does conquer all.

I had my doubts on how they would live up to the phenomenal classic from 92, though pleasantly surprised by the end of the film, I was still somewhat disappointed, not fully satisfied with what they delivered.

The visual deserves all the cred. I was charmed by the colors, the costumes, and set – in awe of the beauty and depth of the Middle Eastern vibes.
I enjoyed the new song Speechless performed by Naomi Scott who portrayed Jasmine, such sensational voice, however, not truly fitting for the role. Jasmine is an Arabian girl, and Scott didn’t fully represent it. Mena Massoud, playing Aladdin was what surprised me the most, I wasn’t sure when seeing the trailer, but as I was eased into the film, the more I saw him in the role, the more I liked and accepted him as the character.

And, though I didn’t buy Will Smith as the genie, I do get why he was cast.
The genie is an over the top character, there are no boundaries for him and there has to be someone who can basically take such persona and exaggerate, and not many in today’s business can do that. Besides, Robin Williams did leave some pretty huge shoes to fill.
I do wonder though if they could’ve worked with an animated version of the genie (same look as the Disney version perhaps) as a tribute to Robin yet Will doing the voice? I don’t know, but it was just wrong. Maybe Jim Carrey? He got some great face expressions.
Mark Hamill, even Bill Hader would be a better fit.
The rap gave me chills, the movements in Prince Ali had my inner child cringing – even now remembering and thinking back.
And some scenes were brutally messed up when moved up in speed, it was more like the camera jumped rather than it being planned and part of the movie.
Also, whoever was the brain behind casting Marwan Kenzari as Jafar was too far off, not knowing what they were doing. It was just awful, nothing, nada, close to the original.

What I did love, was the A whole new world scene.
I mean, that brought some memories and I was floating on cloud 9 – dreaming, completely blissful and enchanted as they swept off on a magic carpet ride under the stars above waters, singing together one of Disney most romantic and recognizable songs – and staying authentic to the original was the most fantastic part of it all.

In conclusion, it wasn’t great nor bad. Would I recommend it? Sure. Would I watch it twice? Probably not. 6,9/10
Now, let’s see what The Lion King will be like and I’m eagerly waiting to see who’ll be cast in the live action film of The Little Mermaid, one of my favorites, so they better not butcher it!



Extremely wicked shockingly vile

Director; Joe Berlinger
Biography/Drama/Crime
1h 50 minutes
Out on Netflix.

Efron is brilliantly convincing as Ted Bundy, portraying someone who is a savage, manipulative and one expectational liar. From beginning to end, the movie truly captures your soul and never lets it go, grabs ahold of you entirely and you’re trapped under this spell of fantastic acting, great visual, and a gruesome story – one based on real events.

Personally, look wise they didn’t match at all – if you compare both Bundy and Efron. Based sole on Bundy’s description as a handsome man and a charming character that had it easy with the ladies, then I totally get casting Efron. And though the look wasn’t there, Efron made up with one exceptional performance among side one great ensemble.

The script is quite fast paced which is what I enjoyed the most, it doesn’t start off dull nor does it become it either – they get right to the point, and there wasn’t any unnecessary dragged out scenes, which made the movie a whole lot more enjoyable.
The visuals of the late ’70s were beautifully shown and so was the costumes, sets, and locations.

If you’ve heard the story you already know the plot, about a serial-killer who practically lived two lives – having everyone around him convinced he wasn’t this dark, twisted, and insane monster capable of the horrid things he was being accused of, though he later admitted to 30 murders and the youngest victim was only 12, Kimberly Leach.

It’s despicable, reading it and not being able to wrap your head around how someone can be this mentally ill, and then seeing it being played in front of you on the screen, yet, you can’t help but to watch and be fascinated at the same time how the brain of a psychopath is wired. Doing this on one side, and living as a loving husband and father on the other.

Overall, an entertaining movie for the interested one. 6/10



The Upside (Bluray review)

Director; Neil Burger
Comedy/Drama
2h 6 minutes
From January 11th 2019

Copy provided by Sony HOME

I’m not going to compare it to the classic, ”will become historic”, and charismatic French version, that would be cruel to the crew behind this American version, and after all, they still deserve cred for not only trying but actually managing to still deliver a heartwarming and somewhat entertaining film, nonetheless.

If you’ve seen the original then you are more than familiar with the story and plot, the only difference is basically the language.
The movie is based on a true story and an unlikely yet amazing friendship between two different worlds of people, a wealthy man with quadriplegia and an unemployed man from the darker side of town.
They bark on a journey, and it becomes a roller coaster of laughter, frustration, tears, and love, all wrapped into one soul-sweetened script.

I’d recommend the original version, all the days of the week, But, don’t judge this one too quickly, even though I didn’t truly buy Kevin Hart in this sort of role, he’s still a brilliant actor. 6/10

Extras;
Deleted scenes
Gag reel



What men want (Review)

Director; Adam Shankman
Comedy/Romance
1h 57 minutes
From; February 8th

If you think you are gonna get the charming, charismatic, entertaining film from 2000 featuring Mel Gibson yet from a females point of view – you are in for a disappointment.
I truly enjoyed What women want, and miss those types of scripts and films, so I was beyond thrilled when seeing the trailer to What men want, figured it’d be equally fun and cute, but I just ended up wasting 2 hours of my life, and wondering why movies like these are still being created.

The basis is the same, the ability to hear thoughts. But instead of a man being able to get inside the head of a woman, here, a woman gets inside the head of a man.
Ali Davis (Henson) works at a male-dominated environment and one day during a frustration, trying to understand men, she has a tarot reading, hits her head afterward and suddenly starts hearing what all the men want, what first seems like a nightmare she slowly sees as a blessing and to her advantage.

The script was poorly written, dull, and zero humor which overshadows Taraji P. Henson phenomenal talent as an actress, she’s always fantastic, I mean, Cookie Lyon must be one of the greatest character ever created and written and she nails it perfectly with both finesse and brilliance, but here she shines away due to the bad film. 3/10 And that is only because of her work, besides that, don’t waste your time,



Glass (Review)

Director; M. Night Shyamalan
Thriller/Sci-fi
2h 9 minutes
From January 2019

He introduced Unbreakable, left us in awe with Split and ended with Glass. From the year 2000 has M. Night Shyamalan given us three psychological thrillers that makes you think and use your brain to the very core. It’s not your typical thriller/Sci-fi, it is a script that with its depth, intrigued and heavy dialogue, and supreme acting, will leave you gasping for air, moments after the credits, leaving you stunned with question marks because you don’t feel like you’ve had enough.

Glass is the third film in the trilogy, Unbreakable that came out in 2000, Split from 2016, and now Glass. There is a red thread, so you must obviously watch all 3 to comprehend the complexity of the story and plot. James Mcavoy plays, well, he’s split. A man diagnosed with 24 personalities, one more diffuse than the other, a multiplex persona who switches from one personality/character to another in a matter of minutes, seconds even. His story is brought up in the 2016 release, and we get to meet just a few of the names, here we get introduced to a few others while bringing back Mr. Glass and David Dunn from Unbreakable.

I loved Split, I found it intriguing, dark, fascinating, and brilliant. Glass, however, was duller to my taste. The slow pace had me snoozing off every now and then that I quickly lost interest. It’s a good movie, it just isn’t great nor as near as phenomenal as Split.
And though I thought I would get some answers, I was left with more questions instead.

David Dunn (Willis), uses his supernatural powers to track down Kevin (McAvoy), the man from Split. Once he thinks he finally has him, Dr. Ellie Staple (Paulson) takes them both and locks them in, trying to solve the case once and for all, wondering what causes these men to believe they are supernatural.

I wouldn’t say that if you enjoyed the first two you’ll automatically enjoy this one, at least that wasn’t my case, but it’s worth a watch. 6/10



Johnny English Strikes Again (Bluray Review)

Director; David Kerr
Action/Comedy
1h 29 minutes
Out on Bluray
Copy provided by Sony Home

Not too shabby, not being such a big fan of the first one I didn’t quite know what to expect of the sequel, well, to be completely honest, I didn’t have any expectations at all.
I kept stalling and dragging out the time to sit down and watch it, I just wasn’t in the mood for it, but yesterday decided to once and for all to sit down and watch it, just so I could post this reviews for you guys,sooo,you’re welcome.

It took me by surprise on how much I actually enjoyed it, I don’t recall laughing this much during the first one, hence the uncertainty to watch this one.
Atkinson is a legend, the man oozes humor and is the embodiment of pure comedy. All you have to do is to look at him and you will laugh, your face will light up, and I mean that in the sweetest and most genuine possible way ever.
Truly one of a kind, a fine actor who should always stick to this genre because he does it so effortlessly and perfect, nailing it every time.

Johnny English Strikes Again, the title itself says it all. He is back and equally raw and clumsy. After a massive cyber attack in Britain, English must come back after his retirement and track down the hacker.
Bough and Johnny himself partners up and hop on an adventurous ride filled with old school gadgets, cool cars, and loads of shenanigans. A joyful ride for the entire family. 6.5/10

Extras;
The comedy genius Rowan Atkinson
The cars
The gadgets
Location and design
+ much more



Halloween (Bluray Review)

Director; David Gordon Green
Horror/Thriller
1h 46 minutes
Out on bluray.
Copy provided by SONY HOME.

A disgrace to all horror movies out there, a snoozing fest at its best, counting the minutes for this dull, dragged out, and altogether boring movie to come to an end.
It has been quite some time since I truly was this bored during a film, I didn’t know what to do with myself, completely losing it and about to climb the walls.

It has been been four decades since the horrific Halloween night, and now, years later, Laurie finally confronts her long-time enemy, Michael Myers.

Not something I’d ever recommend, I just waited for the credits to start rolling.
Don’t get me wrong, Jamie-Lee Curtis is legendary, as always she’s brilliant in front of the camera, pure finesse and has mastered fine acting, however all that gets shadowed by the bad plot and writing. The script lacked thrill and suspense, two important factors in horrors. 3/10

Extras;
Back in Haddonfield: Making Halloween
The Original Scream Queen
The Legacy of Halloween
Journey of the Mask
+ more



Second Act (review)

Director; Peter Segal
Comedy/Drama
1h 43 minutes
From; January 4th

Peter Segal gives us a sweet, charming, and a quite lovely film, nothing more, and nothing less.
I wouldn’t call it ”comedy” per-say, I don’t recall laughing once nor even so much as cracking half a smile, yet, it was heartwarming.
A semi-predictable script with a fantastic cast.

I cannot help but become completely smitten by Jennifer Lopez whenever I see her, she is most certainly a girl crush of mine. I simply adore her, she has an essence of charm and beauty that radiates through the screen that is quite impossible to ignore. However, I feel like she isn’t reaching her full potential with scripts and movies like this one. She can do so much more, yet here we are.

Maya, a 40-something woman without any fancy educations decides to reinvent her life and wants to show what street-smarts can do.
After 15-years at the same place as a store worker, she gets a call from a big brand wanting to take her in as a consult, little does she know that the reason behind that position is because of a decision she made when she was 16 and is now coming face to face with a special someone she never thought she would ever see again.

It’s a cute movie, definitely worth your time. 5/10



First Man (Bluray review)

Director; Damien Chazelle
Biography/Drama
2h 21 minutes
Out on Bluray.
Copy provided by SONY HOME

Watching paint dry would have been a much more entertaining Saturday night than watching this long depressing dull drag of a movie.
A film that didn’t even capture my attention nor slightly kept me interested for one bit. Not a single moment went by without me praying for its end.

I haven’t been this bored during a movie in a long time, and hope not to go through it again anytime soon. First Man is an historic event yet I didn’t experience anything remotely near something as legendary as I would’ve hoped from such story, it quickly becomes dull and dry and nothing I’d ever watch twice nor personally recommend. Making a motion picture that is over 2 hours long is one thing but making it THAT boring is just cruel.

A look at Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon.

A sleeping pill at its finest. A film that you will do just fine not watching. 2/10

Extras;
Deleted scenes.
Shooting at NASA.
Astronaut Training.
Recreating the Moon Landing.
+ more.



Instant Family (press screening review)

Director; Sean Anders
Comedy
1h 58 minutes
Swedish premiere; February 27th

A delightful, heartwarming, and soul-touching film based on a true story.
A well-written script with its sharp, entertaining, and reasonable dialogue to phenomenal acting, truly a movie worth your time.

I was pleasantly surprised at this unexpectedly great family movie for everyone to enjoy, it grabs a sweet and gentle hold of you and doesn’t let go until the very end, it was an emotional roller coaster and I was ready to hop on a second time around once the credits started rolling because I had a blast, like one I haven’t had in a long time.
I laughed, I smiled, and I shed a tear and loved every second of it.

Based on directors Sean Anders life, a couple decides to open their home and hearts to become foster parents. And what first seems like the perfect set of siblings turns slowly into a living nightmare for Pete and Ellie when nothing goes as hoped.

It’s the perfect feel-good movie, a story that will have you smiling from ear-to-ear, and have a great time and be in the best mood when leaving the theater. Strongly recommended. 8/10