Friday 26 September 2014

SPECIAL: Some TV Series

It's late that means the TV starts to fill with more excitement, with both new and returning TV are some that I have seen, and commented based on respective season/series premieres...

The Blacklist (S2)

          The Blacklist is the one that I watched first, perhaps because it is also one of the earliest release, yet also because I can't wait to see more of James Spader as Red. Back for Season 2, this season premiere didn't disappoint, but didn't exactly thrill as much, either. We get more of the same, which is more of the good stuffs, really. Red's charm, curious blacklist-ers, and we're up and running for more of The Blacklist for the next 9 months. One thing that made this episode even better, is that they immediately picked up this Berlin character from last season's cliffhanger, and it looks to go on even in episode 2, which means that more is already at stake even this early in the season.

Conclusion: If you likes the first season, I think this season will give you more of the same...and more. So, yeah, why not?

Gotham (New)

          Gotham is one of the most exciting new series I've been looking for. There is no need to hide that I am a big Batman fan, from the games, movies, and I have said this to people that the thing most exciting about Batman, is the array of villains looking to make a mess in his beloved city. Now, with a series focusing on the origins of these charismatic villains, I thought this is awesome, but only if they can pull it off. One episode in, and I was pleased. It was not one that left me in awe, but I believed this was a hard series to pull off anyway, so to be able to bring what they did in the pilot episode, it was more than enough to get me to follow the whole series to the end. There are lots of positives and negatives to discuss with this one, but maybe that is a discussion for another time.

Conclusion: I think this will be a great series to follow, as long as you can keep up with the characters.

Agents of SHIELD (S2)

          Season 1 was a mixed ride with this show. They got fans excited initially, but let them down throughout midway in the series, before pulling off an exciting story arc during the 7 episodes towards the finale. Season 2 starts pretty harshly (in a good way), they don't even give us time to breath. Continuing whatever situation we were left in, the story keeps the tone and kept the strong emotional plot, while still daring to do more even in episode 1. And the flashback episodes & character was good, too. What still kept me disappointed is their inability to access (or employ) characters or artefacts that are more relevant to the universe. Instead, they seem to be left with low-rated characters, made-up weird artefacts, and when they tried to claim the Quinjet, yeah that was seriously disappointing. It should not be that way.

Conclusion: Marvel fans will follow (even if they seem not so good). Non-fans should give it a few more episodes before deciding whether to follow or not.

Scorpion (New)

          This was one unexpected series. The pilot was good and exciting and fresh. But then I looked back and realized that it probably isn't going anywhere with the premise and set up. Whatever is new and fresh for this series, may have exhausted it's freshness in the pilot episode alone. Unless the writers can be more daring and infinitely more creative, I'd say that this one will soon be more routine and boring. But trust me, the pilot episode was very good, and worth the watch. For future episodes, I'm not so sure, unless the writers can pull it off, in which case "hats off" to them.

Conclusion: Pilot is very good, but we'll need to give it a few more episode to see if they can maintain the quality & excitement. 

Friday 19 September 2014

Looking Forward: OCTOBER 2014

Bigger and better movies creep in as we near the holiday season of November-December...

Gone Girl (Oct 3-USA, Oct 2-UK, Oct 9-Singapore)

          Not one that I'm particularly excited (by heart). It's more towards curiosity, and that what pulls me in is the credibility of the talent. A genre of mystery & thriller already has quite the appeal for a secretive & twisty discovery. And now for the talent within. Story: based on a novel. Directing: A masterclass like David Fincher who has his own style for quality mystery movies. Cast: Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, etc. All those and the curiosity may just be enough to drag me to the theatres for this.

Links for trailers: (Trailer #2)

Dracula Untold (Oct 10-USA, Oct 3-UK, Oct 2-Singapore)

          I know nothing much about this apart from the cast members and what I see from the trailers, and even that is enough to convince me to see this. How much this untold story (as a story) is going to be intriguing is still beyond my thoughts. But from the trailers, there seem to be a considerable amount of action for it to be quite an exciting action fantasy film. The way I see it, with a cast team like Luke Evans, Dominic Cooper & Charles Dance as well as some action-packed trailer, there is no reason not to check it out when it arrives on theatres.

Links for trailers:

Fury (Oct 17-USA, Oct 24-UK, Oct 22-Singapore)

          It might not be here if this is not the month of October. Fury has the makings of a big budget action movie, with an amazing cast & director too, yet it seems to promise nothing new. From what I know so far, it is an action-drama war movie, set to portray as much authenticity as possible with the deep emotional portrayals from the characters. The cast is an exciting one, too, but aside from this, it doesn't look like it showcases anything new & intriguing. But then, what else is there to look forward to? (Don't worry, November is close by...)

Links for trailers:

Other Movies:

The Judge (October 10)
-A fancy looking comedy-drama starring the one and only, Robert Downey Jr...

Nightcrawler (October 17)
-A crime-thriller with a very intriguing & eccentric plot...

The Book of Life (October 17)
-An animation film with some excellent voice casts...

John Wick (October 24)
-An action thriller starring Keanu Reeves, with a rather familiar premise...

Thursday 11 September 2014


"We get out now, or we die trying!"

          The Maze Runner possesses a very interesting premise to begin with, and being a film of discovery and uncovering the truth, it kind of rests on the reveal to be good for viewers to be able to fully enjoy it. Well, in all honesty, its both satisfactory yet disappointing. Everything else is just fair enough to enjoy and kind of what we expected, with nothing special coming through.

          From minute one, the premise is set, and questions after questions are brought up yet remain unanswered. This is for the viewers to join along with our heroes as they uncover the truth of the situation they are in. It's satisfactory in the case of the revelation, the truth behind what really happened, well, without spoiling it, it's kind of fresh and acceptable. What is not, though, is getting to that reveal. Again, without spoiling it, the methods initially uncovered to get some truth out of it kind of felt rather unsatisfactory. I don't expect a lot from this film, so I can accept it, but in truth, it could have been done much, much better. (Putting aside the fact that it came from the novel).

          With a movie that aims to keep viewers in the dark until the final reveal, it mostly rests on such reveal and everything else matters quite little. Of course, throughout the film, we follow our heroes as they slowly discover new things happening, and for this film, I thought it was done fairly okay. They keep us questioning yet they reveal little hints and clues, which is good and keeps us intrigued. Unfortunately, as it leads towards the final reveal, they did not touch upon these again, so it felt less significant.

          Every other aspect was done well, just what I expected from this film, but still, it could have been done better. The action was fun, some running in the maze was quite suspenseful. A little touch of comedy, and yes, a little touch of drama, too. The cast was surprisingly good, and I quite liked some of the main characters too. Overall, it was a satisfactory film to watch, but in all aspects, could have been done better.


I guess the final sentence should make the verdict already, regarding all aspects of the film.

SCORE: 6.5 

Wednesday 3 September 2014


"Tell me about your target"
"Male...old...used to have skills"
"Used to?"

          The November Man has its moments that is satisfying enough as a spy thriller film with an excellent showdown of skills and wits between the two main cast. If you take those away, however, it becomes a boring movie with typical action, typical story, and really unsatisfying characters. The only thing done right with this film, is the two main characters, and nothing else.

          The relationship between the two main characters, Deveraux and Mason, is really the only thing exciting about this film. The confrontation between the master and his best student. Testing each others skills and wits, while costantly revolving around the notion of one character knowing the other all too well, to predict moves and make their next one. It could have been done better, but at least they pulled it off satisfying enough that I can enjoy these confrontations all the time. Yet I have to give credit to both Pierce Brosnan and Luke Bracey for making it work and being such likeable characters too.

          Aside from this though, the movie really don't have anything to show for. The action is very typical. You'd seen it a thousand times before. The story is quite typical, holding on to some of the general cliches and twist that you may (or may not) come to expect from these kind of movies. The only special thing about the plot, is again, pitting the master against the protege, and pushing the relationship to the limit, is all that makes the plot interesting.

          Meanwhile, in terms of characters, none of the other characters are even slightly interesting, including the villain. When you have a villain that is neither fierce or compelling, it becomes a problem. This is no superhero flick, granted, but even spy movies could have a villain that could really bring the shit (sorry) down. Take a look at the Bond movies (no pun intended for Brosnan, really). Yet again, even in terms of characters, the only ones interesting are Deveraux and Mason. Luke Bracey did well as the young student who is both skillful but has internal struggles of his own. Meanwhile, Brosnan just always have that charisma and flair onscreen, making him look cool in anything that he does.


Good: Excellent two main characters (relationship, character, plot)

Bad: Everything else, Typical action, Almost typical plot, Uninteresting supporting characters

SCORE: 6.0