The Hitman’s Bodyguard Review

The Hitman’s Bodyguard is an action movie that came out in 2017, it stars Ryan Reynolds and Sam Jackson. I’m going to get into my initial thoughts first and then continue with what I think about it these few years later.

So I just got back from The Hitman’s Bodyguard. It was a pretty good movie. Let’s start with the plot/story. The story was a little predictable, but it still had some good twists. I really like the way they give exposition and flashbacks. They really show the characters and the way they think, especially in the one with the Kincaids. The villain was ok, again a little “seen before” but some stuff happens that makes him cool. The effects could have used some work, the CGI is pretty noticeable. Now we get to the strengths of the movie. The main characters are really good. They have established backstories and motivations that really well established throughout the film. The acting was also really good. The best being between Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson. They were hilarious and had great chemistry. All the other characters have some great comedic moments as well. The next strength is the dialogue, it was all pretty good with all jokes hitting pretty good. And Finally the action. It was handled pretty well. The fight scenes could probably be a little less shaky, but its not a deal breaker. The chase scenes are all pretty fun and fast paced. Over-all it was a fun, fast-paced, funny action flick. 7/10

I still feel this way about the film. I’ve seen it a few times since it released and it’s still pretty fun. As I said in my initial thoughts the weakness of the film is the main villain. It kind of makes a waste of Gary Oldman who could have had his own more interesting villain. He mostly works to set up the plot of the film and to bring together the ending. Everything else about the film was still pretty fun though. The action is pretty good, the soundtrack is good and the chemistry between Jackson and Reynolds is great. If you haven’t seen it yet, it’s easily available out there.

Is Hollywood becoming uncreative?

So this is a thing I’ve seen a lot over the past few years and something I keep hearing about. “Hollywood is becoming uncreative, all they release or make are things based on prior IPs”. To me this complaint can be valid, but people need to remember a few things.

Firstly, Hollywood is a business and money is the main reason they make movies. For that very reason it makes sense that Hollywood will focus on making things that could possibly make them as much money as possible. That’s why we see so many adaptations, sequels, remakes, reboots etc, being released. there is existing material which means there is an existing fanbase to market too. Sometimes it works, just look at marvel for that, and some times it doesn’t. This way there is less risk involved in making and releasing a film. It’s why whenever something becomes huge there are eventually a ton of movies released to try to copy that success, which will be touched on later.

The second thing that people need to remember is that this isn’t a new thing. People are acting like this is a new phenomenon sweeping the industry. When in reality this has been going on for almost as long as the industry has been around as an industry. So many of the best remembered movies are remakes, reboots, sequels, or adaptations. This isn’t a new thing, though it is increasing and getting more noticeable as time goes on. Now what I can get behind are how remakes especially are getting lazy, but that is due to Disney releasing live-action remakes that are barely adapting the source material. But again, they make a ton of money. I mean heck, I’m a huge Godzilla fan and those franchises are based entirely on rebooting and remaking things. In the Godzilla franchise alone there are 9 reboots in the franchise spanning over 60 years.

Thirdly, this isn’t just a Hollywood thing. This is an everyone thing. Just look at how many tv shows or streaming shows out there are based on pre-existing works. Heck a lot of them are just reboots of older shows. Heck if people are tired of super hero movies in the theatres, just look at how many super hero shows are on tv and more are continuing to be made as more streaming services are becoming more popular. Everyone wants their Daredevil. Netflix had Daredevil, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Punisher, Jessica Jones, and the Defenders. Amazon Prime has The Boys. Netflix now has the Umbrella academy. HBO Max is going to have the DC shows, and Disney+ is going to have the marvel shows. And those are just streaming services, not just airing shows. This isn’t just a movie thing, this is an everyone thing

Fourthly, the rise of streaming services has caused Hollywood to get worried and start focusing on things that will bring people back to the theatre. Making movies is a hard thing in itself, making a successful movie is something else entirely. Just look at how many movies have been released this year, and how many of them have actually been successful. I’m guessing not a lot. The industry of today is very different from the industry of even 20 years ago. There is much more competition from all over the world to now streaming services which means that Hollywood is going to be even more picky about the movies they choose to produce. These days there is a lot more money riding on them than there used to be. Movie budgets have grown exponentially over time, especially over the last 20 years. Even though filmmaking has become more easily available out there. Film is a very expensive business, even in just making the movie a lot of money is spent. So they’re going to go with what will give the biggest return on the amount of money spent.

Finally, original stuff is still being made out there. Now maybe it’s not in theatres as much anymore, but there are many ways to be seen out there nowadays. Even when it’s an adaptation or based on prior based material it can still be made original and interesting. You gotta look out there for it. I mean there’s so many movies that have gotten huge based on how good they are. They will usually have a huge name behind them.

In conclusion, just relax and watch what you want. This is a trend that will continue because it makes money. When it stops making money than Hollywood will change. Just look at the expanded universe trend. So many movies were trying to copy Marvel, some were successful such as Legendary Godzilla, some were semi-successful such as DC, and some failed upon arrival such as The Dark Universe, but that happened for a different reason that will be talked about one day. There’s a wealth of content out there, just find something and stick with it.

Doctor Strange Review

Doctor Strange came out 3 years ago in November of 2016. It introduced everyone to a character that would eventually become important later on in the MCU with Infinity War and Endgame, and will be an important character going forward in the MCU.

Just got back from seeing Doctor Strange…..It was amazing.

The acting was all really good. Madds Mikklsen was an amazing villain as Kaecilius. He was menacing, and had some good motivation. He is memorable and there is possibility of him returning. He was powerful and imposing, but also had a sense of awe and fun to him. His zealots were imposing and scary with their knowledge and power. Tilda Swinton was great as the Ancient One. She had this gentleness and kindness to her, but was also imposing and tough to her students. She is powerful and full of mystery that eventually comes to play later on. Rachel McAdams was really good as Strange’s semi-love interest, even though she didn’t has a lot of screen time. Chiwetel Ejiofor was great as Karl Mordo. He was stern and tough, but also had a friendship about him that allowed him to be who he was. He learns things that cause him to go a path that makes sense considering his character. He is very rule driven, and is determined to keep the natural order and balance. Benedict Wong as Wong was fun. He was the tough Librarian who had a fun little running joke with Strange. Benedict Cumberbatch was amazing as Dr. Stephen Strange. He gets that egotistical cockiness that a lot of marvel heroes have, that becomes pathos and eventually helps him win in the end. The characters and their motivations are all great. The action was amazing, some of the best in Marvel. The fight scenes were all great, well choreographed and implemented the magic well. The highlights being the fight in the sanctum and the final fight. The way the magic works is great, with the offensive stuff being martial arts based, with magical weapons helping them too. The special effects are amazing. Like the best I’ve seen from Marvel. It was mind-blowing, trippy as all heck. The writing is really good, with the comedy flowing well and being mostly effective. The story was…a little formulaic, but it is a Marvel origin movie so. The score was great and gave that feel of magic. The sets and costumes were all amazing, really fitting the setting and what they were going for. The 3d works really well with this film and enhances the viewing of the visuals. Overall this movie was a lot of fun and entertaining as all hell. I would go into more about the final fights but that would be spoilers. I give it an 8/10 Go see this movie

This was written back when I was still using a numbers system to grade movies on. I eventually decided to change out of that because I felt that a star or number system feels too factual when it comes to talking about something. It feels too formal to me, and it feels like you have to grade based on how you felt they did. I changed to my current system, inspired by Roger Ebert, because I felt that you could still weigh on the aspects of story and character and technical acumen, while still being able to put your personal enjoyment into the review. Anyways back to the review.

My opinion on this movie hasn’t really changed, it’s still a fun ride with some amazing VFX and does the characters justice. After all this time though it still seems like Marvel can’t get passed that “origin movie has to be like phase one” issue. Although it is different than phase one in how it’s visually distinct from those movies. I still love the way they handled the final battle and how it could help create a big villain for future movies. Over-all it is still great, two-thumbs up!

Is CG getting worse ?

This is a question that has been asked many times over the past few years. As time has gone by computer generated images has become incredibly important to the world of filmmaking. It allows the filmmaker to create whatever they want without putting people at risk and spending the money on doing so, as theres a lot of costs in doing that stuff. The issue though is that CG is being so relied on today that companies aren’t able to spend the time on making it look as good as it can be. We as an audience are becoming more and more knowledgeable on the subject as the industry increases its reliance on CG. Because of being surrounded by so much of it we become more aware of the good and the bad. We have been exposed to it in a majority of the movies and tv shows we watch for almost 30 years now. There have been so many examples of good and bad CG over the years. The technology, software, and skillset of today are very different from even 20 years ago. Technology has changed that much in that amount of time. It went from only the biggest movies having the best effects to smaller independent filmmakers on the internet being able to have incredible effects. The big issue is that people aren’t able to spend the time on making things look the best they can, plus as technology advances eventually we’ll get to a point where there is no increase in the way CG looks. The way CG looks has a lot to do with time, budget, workforce, and what they have to work with. Yes technology has changed, but when artists have the time to create these worlds as well as the manpower too, we can get some incredible stuff. Time is a major factor, these companies that do these effects all only have a certain amount of time, or are able to only work on a small part. It’s why the CG in Black Panther can be laughable and then Infinity war is incredible, the time and resources were focused on that movie. CG is very reliant on having the time to get this stuff done. So there may be a decrease in the quality of CG as the effects become much more demanding. It’s why some movies made 25+ years ago still look incredible, while movies released in the last year can look laughable. It’s also why you see a bunch of different companies when it get’s to the effects area in film credits, as a lot of the time they are outsourced to a number of different effects companies so that they each have the time to create them with as much time available. Making these effects is time consuming work, it’s why 10-12 different companies worked on a movie like Avengers Endgame. Making good CG takes a lot of time as there’s a lot of stuff to be accounted for. A good example of this is just how hard it is to recreate a person in CG. Disney has had a lot of trouble getting it right.

The problem is the way CG is used, it’s at it’s best when it’s used to accentuate something real, create a world, or in trying to create something that doesn’t look real. There are great examples of creating real people in CG, it’s just that it needs the time to do so. A great resource for CG info is the Corridor Crew youtube channel. These guys are talented filmmakers and CG artists that understand how CG works. This rant was in response to a question I’ve seen a lot, and my answer comes from stuff I’ve learned from them. Here’s a great example of what I’m talking about. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=inbjhcMu46g&t=731s

That’s everything I have to say, keep a look-out for the next post. Have a great day !