After thirty years, Eddie Murphy has returned as one of his most iconic characters in comedy history, Prince Akeem Joffer in Coming 2 America, the long awaited sequel to one of the funniest comedies of the eighties. In Coming 2 America, Akeem has been crowned King of Zamunda by his dying father, King Jaffe Joffer (James Earl Jones), and is ruling with his Queen, Lisa (Shari Headley), who Akeem has met and fell in love with while on his trip to Queens in the first film. Blessed with three daughters (KiKi Layne, Bella Murphy, and Akiley Love), Akeem eventually learns that he also has a son and must set out with his best friend and royal aide, Semmi (Arsenio Hall) back to America and seek him out.
When it came time to adapt ‘Doctor Sleep’; Stephen King’s sequel novel to ‘The Shining’, Mike Flanagan seemed to be faced with some tough decisions when writing and directing. Not only were King’s original novel and Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 adaptation two different beasts, but they were so dissimilar that the author famously hated Kubrick’s take on his work. However, it seems that Flanagan has succeeded in crafting not only a worthy sequel nearly four decades after the original, yet a movie that seems to work on its own terms (Hey, if it is enough to please the “King”, then I am sure it will work for modern audiences).
A Proper Sequel or Flashback Fodder?
It’s no secret that I loved the short ONA series Planetarian when I first watched and wrote about it September 2017. When it FINALLY got a Blu-ray and DVD release from Funimation earlier this year I absolutely had to purchase it. That’s when I learned this little gem had a sequel film the whole time! Obviously, I had to watch this film and determine if this properly followed things up or was absolutely unnecessary. Continue reading “Planetarian: Hoshi no Hito – There Was a Sequel Film the Whole Time?!?”
This review is part 2 of a series where I look at the entire Zero Escape franchise. If you haven’t read part 1 where I talk about the first game, 999, I suggest you do that before reading this one. Some spoilers for 999 will also be in this so you may want to play that first if that bugs you. This review will be split into two sections: the first section will be a spoiler free review of Virtue’s Last Reward (VLR for short) and the second will be a spoiler section where I discuss certain points in greater detail. Continue reading “Zero Escape: The Nonary Games Virtue’s Last Reward – Reviewing Them All Part 2”
There really is not that much to say about ‘Sherlock Gnomes’, except that its animation, when compared to its predecessor ‘Gnomeo & Juliet’, is a breath of fresh air. That is saying something for an animated feature that could be passed off as something that feels more like a Direct-To-DVD movie than something meant for theaters. I did not hate ‘Sherlock Gnomes’, but I cannot stamp it off as great either. It is what it is.
Believe it or not, ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ is the seventeenth movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe; and the franchise does not seem to be slowing down. However, since 2014’s surprise hit ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’, Marvel Studios has felt the need to fuse the action genre with more comedic elements. That does not seem to be a bad thing, since audiences still seem to have a blast at the movies every time. I even enjoyed ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ with all the jokes and some of the spectacle it had to offer, more so than the previous ‘Thor’ movies. While ‘Thor’ and ‘Thor: The Dark World’ had spectacular visuals and humor to even the tension, those movies were quite fine with what they gave us. I will go so far as to say that ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ is a fast-paced, humorous, and somewhat epic ride, thanks to director Taika Waititi’s energy and Mark Mothersbaugh’s score.
In 1982, a filmmaker named Ridley Scott (‘Alien’, ‘Gladiator’, ‘The Martian’) took us to a world never before imagined by the human mind. In this world lied breathtaking sights, new and innovative technology, and ideas that would shape life as we know it for the future. No matter how many times this world has been revisited, it still manages to captivate all who visit it to this day, remaining a cultural phenomenon and an experience to witness; it was the world of ‘Blade Runner’! Now, 35 years later, Director Denis Villeneuve (‘Arrival’, ‘Sicario’) takes us back to that same world; only this time, almost everything has changed. The sights we saw have evolved into colorful giants of virtuality and 3-dimensional realism; and while some of the technology remained the same, the world itself has expanded into a bigger, fully realized city of danger and possibilities; The year is now 2049!
I’m not sure what to say about ‘Alien: Covenant’, but as far as I can remember, it is one of the most disappointing science-fiction movies since ‘Morgan’. Here’s a little fact! If you remember my review of last year’s ‘Morgan’, I mentioned how the director of that little film was Luke Scott, a.k.a Ridley Scott’s father. Why do I bring up this fact? Well, if you know the movies ‘Alien’ and ‘Prometheus’, then you know the name ‘Ridley Scott’. He has made acclaimed movies (‘Gladiator’, ‘Blade Runner’, ‘The Martian’), and he has made critically divisive movies (‘The Counselor’, ‘Exodus: Gods and Kings’). What Ridley Scott wanted to do was to capture the feeling audiences felt when watching ‘Alien’ for the first time, from its opening titles which fade in one by one to the ‘Alien’ theme by Jerry Goldsmith, to its plot which critics have felt was similar, while also serving as a sequel to the divisive ‘Prometheus’, which was a semi-prequel to ‘Alien’ that worked as a visually stunning stand-alone movie, but sadly feels like a video game more than a horror movie worthy of the ‘Alien’ name.
The marketing for ‘Fifty Shades Darker’ is as follows. “Slip into something a shade darker”. Well, for the first half of this sequel adapted from the second addition to E.L. James’ popular erotic ‘Twilight’ fan-fiction ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, I ended up stepping in what looked to be a steamy pile of sh*t, only to end up braving the dark trenches of Christian Grey’s sexscapades with his submissive Anastasia Steele, all the way through a very interesting, yet romantic story-line which sets up the final movie in the ‘Fifty Shades’ series. I can’t deny that ‘Fifty Shades Darker’ is a really bad sequel, let alone one that works as Hollywood pornography instead of an actual film, despite actually feeling some interest in its second half.