Sunday 24 September 2017


            This is a proper sequel, in every sense of the word. It takes all the best parts of the first film and either brings it back or enhances it. Though I don't think a lot is enhanced, but given how good the first film is, sometimes its good enough just to enjoy more of the same. And like the first film, Kingsman: The Golden Circle, to my satisfaction, has a very heartful story and some very emotional moments.

              This sequel brings back all the qualities that made the first film great. The high-octane action sequences are great fun to watch - with great action choreographs (especially those whips & lassos) presented by fast camera movements. And given the R-rating, director Matthew Vaughn didn't need to hold back. Although, I have to say it is used more to the comical side than to the gory side of things.

               And there's also some of that fun humour & dialogue. Meanwhile, the plot overall is probably nowhere near best story of the year, but it is decent. And I like the fact that it really progresses the story & development of the characters - which is also why I can say that this film is a proper sequel, because it is, even in the sense of the story.

              But the part I like best is the fact that this film has some very heartful moments. Obviously, I won't spoil them here, but there really are a few scenes I could pick out which were surprisingly quite emotional. So although this film is made more as a fun, silly action movie on the surface, this also shows that Matthew Vaughn cares about the story and the characters - and I like that and that deserves commendation.

              In the end, this film is really a proper sequel in every way, from the story & characters, and to the qualities it brings back. If you have a movie as good as the first Kingsman movie, sometimes more of the same is good enough. And this story moves forward and expands the world, and yes, I want to see more Kingsman movies...

VERDICT: 82 / 100

Sunday 17 September 2017

SPOILER TALK: The Defenders S1

It has been a month since the release of the first season of The Defenders...
But I just have this nagging thought on why, on a very personal level, I didn't actually like it...



               Before I start, I just want to call out again that I didn't necessarily think that this is a terrible show. It's not really a good one either, but as mentioned in my non-spoiler review, there are some things to enjoy from this series, and the story progression of the characters are fine. But there are things which happened which I really didn't like, and this is why I really disliked the final two episodes...because at the end of episode 6...

               Elektra killed Alexandra and took over as the main antagonist. On so many levels, I didn't like this. First and very simply, you had a character like Alexandra played by the amazing Sigourney Weaver who is suddenly undermined by an Elektra character who had been like a lost child throughout the series. Though Alexandra wasn't necessarily a great villain herself, it just gets worse by being undermined by Elektra.

             Furthermore, this is an Elektra who had spent a full episode sleeping in Matt's bed and seemingly remembering her past life. And all of a sudden, she is now this badass who wants to take over the world? How this that happen? What was the plan?

            And the worst part for me is that, on a very fundamental level, Elektra is not this big bad main antagonist character. If she is to be the best killer in the world that The Hand unleashes upon the heroes, then that works. But you look at that character on a very fundamental level, and you can see that Elektra is not a big bad antagonist. She is not a villain with a plan. It just doesn't fit and doesn't make any sense.

            And this is why I really disliked how the final two episodes of the series turned out to be. It did not make sense on many levels as I have described above, and it just loses its powerful opposing force. Especially when you've had great villains like Wilson Fisk or Kilgrave, this is just...pathetic, unfortunately...

Sunday 10 September 2017


             The only knowledge I have about the man named Barry Seal - which is who this movie is all about - is from the Netflix series Narcos. Meanwhile, this film employs the narration style similar to that which was used in Narcos as well - albeit with more humour such that it becomes more Guy Ritchie-esque. So, to me, it ended up feeling a little bit like watching a Narcos episode (or movie, rather) that is directed by Guy Ritchie (which it isn't, because the director is Doug Liman).

              That being said, the movie is pretty good and pretty damn enjoyable. While my comments above make it seem like its nothing I've never seen before, it does not mean that I didn't enjoy it. As a matter of fact, I did. To think about it, it is actually a very fun style of storytelling which actually (fortunately) has not been overly used in modern movies. Of course, not all movies fit this type of style. So then, to be able to see this kind of fun, fast-paced style (and one that is done brilliantly) is a joy.

              To add on to that, Tom Cruise is perfect in the role. Of course, the real Barry Seal probably would not be remotely close to how he is portrayed, but for the sake of the movie, Tom Cruise did a bloody good performance that really fits and enhances the style of the film. The rest of the cast was okay, but there was no standout.

                The plot is decent, but again, it is the narration style that stood out - credit to director Doug Liman for that. The music was great as well and fits the tone of the movie perfectly. Otherwise, I think this is an excellent film which pulls of the style to perfection, and it makes it a rare biographical film that is just fun to watch with a great character you like to see. Really worth the watch.

VERDICT: 82 / 100