Hello, fellow moviegoers!
In the lead-up to “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” the “Star Wars” fan base has been divided to say the least. Many questioned whether or not we needed a movie about a young Han Solo, and there was a lot of doubt that Alden Ehrenreich could portray the iconic character originally brought to life by Harrison Ford.
Now that “Solo: A Star Wars Story” is officially in theaters, I’m curious to see whether or not fans of the franchise will accept this new entry or reject it in a similar fashion that some did with “The Last Jedi."
Let’s put all that publicity aside for a second and discuss the actual movie. Is it any good? Well, I would say so, yeah.
Is “Solo: A Star Wars Story” a brilliant film that is going to reunite all “Star Wars” fans? Not really, but it’s still an entertaining film that I think most people will enjoy.
First of all, I want to say that one of the best things in this film is Ehrenreich’s performance as Han Solo. He managed to capture the spirit and the essence of the character without just doing a Harrison Ford impression the whole time. He kept the spirit of the character, but he also managed to make it his own, which I believe should be applauded.
The rest of the cast also gave very good performances, specifically Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian. While “Solo” handles and portrays the character of Lando in a different manner than the original “Star Wars” trilogy, Glover brought the perfect amount of charisma and charm needed. Occasionally I found myself seeing Glover on screen instead of the character, but that never became a legitimate problem.
There’s a lot of little things wrong with “Solo.” For example, some of the new characters are poorly written, the visual effects were a bit iffy at times and the villain was pretty generic. Where “Solo” struggles most is with the opening and concluding scenes of the film. The first 10 minutes and the last 10 minutes were pretty spotty. They seemed a bit unfocused and just weren’t very exciting.
However, I found everything between the opening and conclusion to be a fun summer sci-fi adventure.
While in the theater watching “Solo,” I was loving the experience. There are a lot of moments in the film that are sure to make fans of the franchise extremely happy. I consistently found myself with a smile on my face while watching “Solo,” and at one point I even noticed that I was welling up with tears of joy, which I certainly did not expect.
Thankfully, the thing that “Solo” handles best is the relationship between Han Solo and Chewbacca. Director Ron Howard managed to perfectly recreate the companionship between the characters. The two have a hardcore bromance going on, and it was incredibly entertaining see how that started and evolved.
I never expected that I would say this, but I would love to watch another film about a young Han Solo with this same team. Ehrenreich was great in the role, and I found the overall experience to be a lot of fun.
“Solo” doesn’t really concern itself with expanding the “Star Wars” universe. It focuses on being a fun swashbuckling space adventure. Is this going to go down as one of the best in the franchise? No, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. This is probably the “Star Wars” film that is best suited for casual watching. While it does have flaws, it is also very exciting and an enjoyable experience.
So what did you think of “Solo: A Star Wars Story”? How would you compare it to the rest of the franchise? Let me know by commenting on this post! Also, if you enjoyed this review, share it on Facebook and Twitter! It really helps! I will be posting here throughout the summer, so be sure to check back for more movie reviews and other miscellaneous movie thoughts!
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Hello, fellow moviegoers!
When the first “Deadpool” film hit theaters in early 2016, nobody expected it to be the cultural phenomenon that it was. Many hoped that it would be an entertaining movie, but the character had yet to prove that he was appealing to the general moviegoing audience. That film went on to become one of the most successful R-rated films in history, and the persona of Deadpool was widely praised and accepted by audiences around the globe.
Work on the “Deadpool” sequel began quickly, but it got off to a rocky start when it lost director Tim Miller, who had been a massive driving force behind the first film. Director David Leitch (“John Wick” “Atomic Blonde”) stepped in to helm “Deadpool 2,” and he managed to craft a sequel that while arguably not quite as good, is sure to please any and all fans of the first film.
First of all, “Deadpool 2” undeniably recaptures the fun-factor of its predecessor. Wade Wilson is back in all of his quick-witted and fourth wall-breaking glory. While it has plenty of call-backs to the original, “Deadpool 2” establishes that this character isn’t a one-trick pony, and he is here to stay for a long time - provided the character survives the potential deal between Disney and Fox.
Ryan Reynolds, once again, proves that he was born to play this character. He is able to perfectly portray all of the things that make this character what he is. He’s funny, he’s self-aware, he’s vulgar, and yet, on top of all that, he’s dealing with his own emotional problems. Reynolds presents all of these traits in brilliant fashion. He embraces the character of Wade Wilson, and cements him as one of the most unique characters to be seen on the big screen.
“Deadpool 2” sees a lot of new actors and actresses join the cast of this franchise. Zazie Beetz plays Domino, a mutant whose superpower is the fact that she’s lucky, which works a lot better on-screen than I had anticipated. Julian Dennison plays a boy named Russell, a young mutant with fire powers who is being hunted by the time-traveling brute Cable, played by Josh Brolin.
While all of these new additions worked well, the best was undoubtedly Brolin as Cable. He was tough, intimidating and, at times, even a little scary. Yet, Brolin also managed to bring a sense of heart and personality to the character. In this film filled with incredibly comedic characters, Brolin is able to hold his own with pure power and smugness.
One thing that I was apprehensive about going into this film was how they were going to set-up X-Force, the new super-team Deadpool forms that was teased in the trailers. While I won’t spoil anything, the film handles the team in a completely unexpected yet hilariously welcome way, and I’m curious to see how the recently announced “X-Force” film turns out.
I’ve seen “Deadpool 2” twice now, and I’m glad that I saw it again before writing this review. That’s because upon my first viewing, I didn’t think the sequel had as much emotional depth as the first. When I saw the film again a couple days later, I found myself much more emotionally involved, and I appreciated the films themes much more.
“Deadpool 2” is definitely a film that requires multiple viewings. With many subtle jokes and hidden easter eggs, you’re sure to pick up on even more each time you see it. Thankfully, the film makes these repeat viewings easy by being a genuinely enjoyable action-comedy.
If you didn’t enjoy the first “Deadpool” film, chances are you won’t enjoy this one. However, if you’re a fan of the character you’ll definitely have a good time here. Some might prefer it to the original, some might not, but the fact still exists that it’s in the same ballpark in terms of quality.
So what did you think of “Deadpool 2”? Are you at all interested in an “X-Force” film? Let me know by commenting on this post! Also, if you enjoyed this review, share it on Facebook and Twitter! It really helps! I’ll be posting movie reviews here all throughout the summer, so be sure to check back for those and more miscellaneous movie thoughts!
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This review is spoiler free.
Hello, fellow moviegoers!
The “Star Wars” franchise is undoubtedly the most popular and iconic film franchise of all time. “Star Wars” films are events in and of themselves. Since Disney’s acquisition of the series, they’ve found firm ground for releasing these films in December, aside from the upcoming “Solo: A Star Wars Story” (which I think will probably get delayed to the holiday release anyway).
The latest of this new phase of “Star Wars” films comes in the form of the saga’s eighth episode, “The Last Jedi.”
The new installment, directed by Rian Johnson (Looper), has proven to be one of the most divisive “Star Wars” films in a while. Personally, I enjoyed the film. There’s a lot to like, but it does have flaws.
Before I get into what I loved about “The Last Jedi,” I want to touch on what didn’t work for me.
The biggest problem I have with this film is the subplot concerning the character of Finn and new addition to the franchise, Rose. This whole storyline doesn’t add a whole lot to the movie, and it feels like it’s there just to give the characters something to do. While it had a couple good moments, the overall pacing of the film was really hurt by this subplot. It slowed the whole movie down and just makes the audience wish we could get back to the other characters.
Another thing that bothers me a little is difficult to talk about without spoilers, but I’ll try the best I can. Despite there being a lot of cool moments and game-changing stuff for the series, it doesn’t feel like a lot happens in this movie. It doesn’t really feel like the second chapter of this new “Star Wars” trilogy. It feels more like the aftermath of “The Force Awakens.” For the most part, “The Last Jedi” feels like the type of film that just bides the time until we get to the next part in the saga. While that’s not inherently a bad thing, I can’t help but wish that it stood on its own a little more.
The positive things in this film definitely outweigh the negatives by far.
The performances in this film were some of the best seen in the series so far. Daisy Ridley brings a much needed sense of depth and emotion to the character of Rey. Mark Hamill gives what might be the best performance he’s ever given in the role of Luke Skywalker. However, in my opinion, the best performance in the movie was undoubtedly Adam Driver as Kylo Ren. He builds upon his already fantastic performance in “The Force Awakens” and handles the direction they take the character very well. He’s torn, he’s damaged, he’s angry and Driver is able to deliver all of that in spectacular fashion.
Visually, this is one of the most beautiful “Star Wars” films to date. The cinematography is wonderful, but it never gets in the way of the film. It’s never style-over-substance, it’s a good mix of both. There are so many individual shots in this film that evoke strong emotions from the audience. Emotions such as awe, fear, nostalgia, surprise and many more.
The most admirable thing in “The Last Jedi” is the direction they take the characters and the franchise. They took both the characters from the original trilogy and the new characters introduced in “The Force Awakens” and brought them places that I did not expect. As for the franchise, things happen in this film that will undoubtedly have major repercussions in the series. That’s about all I can say without spoiling anything.
My favorite arc in the film involves Kylo Ren and Rey. These characters were introduced well in “The Force Awakens,” but they are truly explored in “The Last Jedi.” We get a really good look at who these characters are, what they fear and what motivates them.
The character of Luke Skywalker has changed quite a bit since we last saw him in action at the end of “Return of the Jedi.” He’s older, and he’s had a lot of bad stuff happen to him and as a result of his actions.
“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is a very different kind of “Star Wars” film. We’ve never quite seen anything like this, and it takes a little bit to get used to. After my first screening of the film, I didn’t really know what to think. I knew that I liked it, but I didn’t know how much. Now that I’ve seen it twice, my opinion has solidified a lot more. I liked “The Last Jedi.” It certainly has flaws, and its far from my favorite film in the series, but I found it quite enjoyable.
Just as a fun little add-on I want to rank all of the “Star Wars” films, so you have a slightly better idea of where this one lands (#1 being the best and #9 the worst).
So what did you think of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”? How would you rank all of the films in the series so far? Let me know by commenting on this post! Also, if you enjoyed this review, share it on Facebook and Twitter! It really helps! I’ll be posting on here from time-to-time over the next few weeks, so be sure to check back for more movie reviews and miscellaneous movie thoughts!
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Hello, fellow moviegoers!
So fun fact. I started KruzeReviews three years ago today. It feels weird typing that. These past three years have gone by so fast. It’s almost surreal to think about. Starting this blog put me on a path that has led to a lot of great things in my life (and hopefully much more).
I haven’t posted on here in a while, but that doesn’t mean that I haven’t been active in reviewing films. As I’m sure many of you know, I am now reviewing films for the Daily Nebraskan. I love that job, and I’m really grateful to my editors Ellis Clopton, Joe John, and Sam Crisler (yes, I’m leaving the Oxford comma) for really pushing me to become a better writer with every article that I write.
I thought it would be kind of fun to talk about how exactly all of this got started.
Basically, it was on a whim. I was sitting in a friend’s basement, and I decided to try something. I was going to start a Twitter account on which I would talk about and review movies, TV, comics, and whatever I wanted to. I thought it would be interesting to try and get everything into 140 characters, however, I quickly discovered that was an inefficient way to review things. I couldn’t say everything I wanted to say.
I came to that realization after I saw the David Ayer film Fury. There was a lot to that film, and there was no possible way that I was going to be able to fit all of my thoughts into a tweet. So, during the drive home, I decided that I was going to start a blog.
I got home, jumped online, and started writing. Now here I am three years later.
I’ve since had film reviews published by the Fremont Tribune. I helped start my high school’s newspaper. I’m a freshman Journalism major and Film Studies minor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I actively write for the Daily Nebraskan. The Columbus Telegram picked up one of my articles last week. And this weekend I will be judging films for the White Light City Film Festival.
That all has happened following a heat-of-the-moment decision to start a Twitter account.
I’m so thankful for all the support I’ve gotten from everybody. It really means a lot. I’m doing what I love, and I hope to continue doing this for a long time.
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