Deadpool 2 Review *Spoilers*

Dear Blog,

OMG, OMG, OMG… Deadpool 2 was amazing!

If you haven’t yet seen it, then I strongly recommend you do. As with most sequels, I was a bit apprehensive when entering the viewing for this movie. sequels had the tendency to go overboard, taking all the jokes we loved about the first film and going full on overkill in any movie to succeed it. I’m looking at you Ragnarök. As the first Deadpool was such a refreshing, comical yet thrilling movie, different from any marvel movie before it, it was almost inevitable that the second movie in the franchise would fall to the same errors. However, it did not.

Deadpool 2 didn’t feel like a sequel, it felt like a continuation of an already well established character. The story line felt fresh (though admittedly through a very repetitive model. Days of Future Past, anyone?) there were no secret sisters, no daddy issues and no Winter Solider. It was simple but with the ability to break our hearts in the first ten minutes. (Vanessa!! Why!!!) but even through his grief, Wade maintained his same natural humour we had enjoyed during his first outing. All-in-all, this has been my favourite movie of 2018 so far, with Black Panther holding a solid second.

Here are a few key points in the movie that really had an impact on me:

  1. Obviously, Vanessa’s shocking demise so early on. We had gone through 2 hours previous, watching Wade and Vanessa’s love blossom to him rescuing her and her total acceptance of Wade’s new appearance only to have the happiness stripped away in a matter of minutes. We were not prepared and the one time I had hoped marvel would continue their tend of bringing back dead characters, they left her dead. I am not OK.
  2. Firefist! (or Russel). I have got to say how refreshing it is to not have an english character! Typically, a lot of sequels take place in London and or have an English character within the main group (Thor: Dark World, Cars 2, Kung Fu Panda 2, Garfield 2, Pocahontas 2, London has fallen, Iron man 3). It gets very boring. Russel is from New Zealand, a nation that is often over shadowed by their australian neighbours so it’s great for them to get a little shout out in mainstream movie.
  3. Deadpool’s toddler legs… I can’t even comment…
  4. Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead are back! And its great to see them both again. Negasonic has grown up a lot since we last saw her and has gained a girlfriend, Yukio. This was a nice little detail raising further awareness for the LGBTQ+ community. Superheros can be tough and can love whoever they like.
    My one dislike for the movie was for Colossus, whose personality just didn’t feel as genuine as it had in the first Deadpool movie. Also, his CGI seems to be slightly off. DP2’s version features a more slender metal man and he seems to have lost a fair bit of muscle mass from his shoulders. The one thing I absolutely head about sequels is the lack of continuity. Sadly this was a bit distraction to me.
  5. X-Force and all their demise. Oh my god, here we go! A whole new bunch of superheros, the next X-Men… And they are all dead… Seriously, this was one of the funniest scenes. From Vanisher to Pete the Human, this ten minutes had everything you needed. After Pete comments on the wind speeds before they all sky dive out of a plane, each hero dies in a rather comical way. Bedlam lands straight into an on coming bus. Shatterstar (what a cheesy name) swerves into some helicopter blades, spraying alien goo everywhere. Zeitgeist flys into a wood chipper and as Pete (who landed like a pro) runs to his aid, Zeitgeist vomits acid, melting away Pete’s arm, killing them both. Finally, Vanisher (whose sky dive in general was damn hilarious) flys into some power lines, giving us a very brief glimpse of his secret identity…
    Domino was the only survivor. No guesses why.
  6. Dopinder. In the first Deadpool movie, we meet Dopinder as Wade’s taxi diver. In their brief interaction, we learn that he is in love with a woman who is marrying someone else. Later on in the movie, Dopinder and Wade meet again. This time, there is a thud in the boot and Dopinder admits having kidnapped his rivel. In Deadpool 2 it is revealed that the duo later killed the man in question. Having had a taste of murder, Dopinder spends the rest of DP2 desperately trying to become a contract killer. It’s a very entertaining character arch.

 

If you haven’t already, go watch Deadpool 2, even if everything has just been spoilt for you by reading this post. There are plenty more surprises and a very big superhero gets a much-needed reboot.


I have not been paid to promote Deadpool 2. 

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Black Panther Review *Spoiler Free*

Dear Blog,

Wow. Just wow. I recently saw Black Panther and it is easily one of my favourite marvel movies to date. I am an avid movie goer and will see as many movies as I can afford but I will always have time for a Marvel movie, it has become some sort of mission of mine.

With Marvel paving a path ultimately leading up to Infinity War, I did wonder how a stand alone superhero movie would fair, especially as Black Panther is the final solo film to be released until the war breaks out.  As people get used to each superhero and as more sequels are made, the more comical the movies have become (I’m looking at you Thor Ragnarök and Guardians Vol 2) which, sure is fun, but I feel has taken away lot of what we loved and replaced it with cheap one-liners. This was not the case with Black Panther.

The first thing you’ll notice about this movie is the incredible sense of culture and pride that the people of Wakonda express. From the very first scene, we are introduced to a contract of modern live verses tribal heritage and it becomes painfully clear how lost true culture has become in the western world. (I say this while typing away on my laptop surrounded by so much mind consuming tech, that a life in Wakonda sounds like paradise). Everything from the ceremonies to the chants, even the language, Xhosa, captures the feel of Africa and carries you with it.  The Second thing you’ll notice is the sheer beauty of this (fictional) African nation. The CGI is beautiful. The landscape is coated in mountains with rivers and waterfalls everywhere you turn. It’s a breath of fresh air compared to the alien planets used in resent films.

So the look and feel of the film is pretty awesome. The cast is equally amazing and beautiful and fit their roles perfectly. It is so refreshing to see a movie based on a certain nationality and then being portrayed by actors of the same descent unlike a certain Air Bender… We were first introduces to Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa in Civil War, where he rocked the Black Panther suit to take Iron Man’s side and take down the Winter Solider. He is perfect for this role as his natural expression is that of pride yet compassion. However he is not my favourite casting decision for this movie…

Michael B Jordan is. OK so I have no real issues with his actor, He has played every role the way he has been asked to. Unfortunately for his, the last movie is was in, a fellow marvel movie was that abomination, Fantastic Four (2015) where he played Johnny storm. Personally, I feel that wasn’t a great role for him. The director made Johnny very mono and almost boring when in the comic books, he is the lively, bubbly one of the group. So when I heard that Micheal B Jordan would be the lead antagonist for Black Panther, I was apprehensive. Oh, how wrong I was. The role of Erik Killmonger in Black Panther was made for him. You see this side to Jordan whats thirsty for blood and during the entire film, he never loses that drive. You can see it dead in his eyes. It makes Erik such a great villain, one who you kinda hope succeeds just because you want more of him. Having been raised in California instead of Wakonda, you also get this huge street vibe, one that is as intimidating to the views as it is for the people of Wakonda. I honestly can not praise this performance enough.

If you haven’t yet, I strongly recommended you go see Black Panther especially if you enjoy the traditional marvel movie. There are a lot of characters who pop up from previous movies so you might need to re-watch Age of Ultron and The Winter Solder. Enjoy it and watch out for a very cute rhino.

My Love/Hate Relationship With Brave.

Dear Blog,

With the recent release of COCO (OMG by the way, such a brilliant movie), I got into thinking about Pixars other huge hits (lets ignore Cars 2, I don’t care how popular that film was, it was awful…). It’s hard to have a favourite with all the great, emotional tales pixar has explored but I’d have to say that Brave is my number one.

If you are unfamiliar with the story of Brave, it follows the life of Merida, in the bonny land of Scotts, as she prepared to meet her suitors (cue a lot of Princess Jasmine vibes). In typical Disney fashion, Merida isn’t thrill with the idea of marriage and following an argument with her mother, Queen Eleanor, she rides into the woods, stumbling upon a chain of Will O’ the Wisps (cue Pacman vibes) which lead her to a witches cottage. The witch gives Merida a cake which will ‘change her fate’ when Queen Eleanor eats it. Unfortunately for our hero, the witch forgets to pre-warn Merida how to revert the spell, only to later leave a riddle “Fate be changed, look inside, mend the bond torn by pride”.  Back at the castle, Merida presents the cake to her mother who willingly takes a bite before suddenly becoming unwell. In the Queens bedroom, the cake’s spell begins to have an effect and Boom! Queen is a bear! Duh, duh, duhhhhh! I’m not joking, that’s seriously what happens. The rest of the movie revolves around turning Queen Eleanor back into a human. Along the way, Merida’s three brothers also turn into bears after eating the remainder of the cake so there’s a lot of bear action.

Now, I love this movie, I really do. It carries a huge sense of culture and tradition tied with beautiful music and animation. It feels Scottish which adds a huge impact as there aren’t too many films set in Scotland. Most people will think of a certain movie featuring Mel Gibson and his infamous ‘Is he Scottish? Is he American?’ accent. Another thing I admire are the characters design. They are much more proportional compared to previous Disney characters. You could say this is down to Pixars involvement but then I’d remind you that Andy’s face in Toy Story was almost concave. Merida’s design does sway more towards the typical Disney princess with her small chin and long, slender neck but her body and eyes are much more realistic. The movie also has amazing colour. Merida’s firer red hair creates a pleasant contrast against the dark, wet landscape. It’s a very nice, warm feeling.

OK, now for the bad stuff. Where do I begin? The trailer? OK, lets start with the trailer… Oh god, the trailer. Actually, that’s unfair, the first trailer itself was great. Simple, captivating and just enough information to leave you wanting more. Except IT WAS TOTALLY MISLEADING! The trailer makes you believe that archery, a sport Merida enjoys very much, plays a huge part in the movie. But it doesn’t. Yet the bear’s that the whole story revolves around are only briefly mentioned. I get that trailers don’t want to give away the whole movie otherwise there would be no point spending your money to go see them but they are meant to give the viewers an idea of the plot. There would be no point in a horror movie showing you sandy beaches and sunny skies if that was only 5% of the actual film There would be a lot of horrified people in that audience. But hey, maybe I’ve interpreted it wrong. I just feel mislead. If I hadn’t watched a trailer for Brave first, I’d have probably enjoyed the movie a lot more.

That’s enough on the trailer but it does lead me into my next little rant, which is the bear plot. Now, remember I said this was my favourite Pixar movie and I stand by that because as a whole, the story is fun and carries itself nicely along. The thing is, there was another movie by Disney about a human turning into a bear released 9 years before Brave. Anyone remember Brother Bear? Another movie I really enjoyed but unfortunately didn’t do so well at the box office. Brother Bear is about three brothers. One is killed trying to take on a bear. The youngest brother, Kenai, tries to get revenge, kills the bear and ends up turning into one himself. He befriends a bear cub and they go on an adventure to find the cubs mother.

Brave and Brother Bear have so many similarities. From the species changing, to the magic, they both even have baby bears involved some point. I have to question whether it was pure coincidence or a conscious ploy to revive a bear themed story. It’s like Spider-man all over again! Why bears anyway? And why bears in Scotland? It made sense in Brother Bear as Kenai and his crew were based in Alaska, where grizzly bears are common. A quick google search reveals there are no wild bears in Scotland and no suggestion there has ever been. That is poor research, Disney.

So, to conclude, Brave, I love you, very much but you are just a fancy CGI body on top of an underrated movie. But who am I to judge? I write blogs…