Now You See Me: Movie Review

Now you don’t (I had too).

Director: Louis Leterrier
Runtime: 115mins
Screenplay: Edward RicourtBoaz Yakin

now_you_see_me_xlgThis movie I awesome, I honestly wanted to see it for two reasons, it was the first true movie since the Avengers movie for Mark Ruffalo and I really like the pace of the director (note that this director, helmed “The Incredible Hulk” and is now working with the current hulk for this one)

This movie deals with a lot of magic yes, but oddly enough it’s not entirely on the forefront of the movie. It’s very much based on the story and the cat and mouse game all while making the viewer guess just what the hell is going to happen next. My best friend and Essenex co-founder saw this movie and did a review as well so peep that. [be nice to link him here

He tweeted and said it was the best movie of the month (May) and I didn’t believe him, but after seeing it I was easily swayed to agreement.

The movie relies heavily on the viewers’ suspension of disbelief to be really effective in executing its magic. But it also has the “viewer’s” angle in the movie in the form of Morgan Freeman. He’s the truest skeptic in the movie. Mark Ruffalo is the guy who is assigned to bring the magicians to face justice, and he honestly gets really into his character I felt. Then you have Jesse Eisenburg, who is much like the guy in Facebook. I wouldn’t say it is a typecast but I wouldn’t say he isn’t either. Going back to my acting class, the best actors play themselves my teacher told me so if it works for him, by all means continue. Oddly enough, it’s very fitting for his role.

The director, Louis Leterrier has a characteristically noticeable  way to change between acts and it’s no different here. Each major magic show is the cue for each act. and it helps to pace the movie. if you remember the incredible Hulk (with Ed Norton) each fight scene was the closing of the act and helped to pace it. It’s great when a movie has a good flow between dialogue and action.

And here is where I complain… It is a movie of course that the magic works. Being a film student, I had a bit of a hard time believing what was on the big screen. But the story was so strong I let the story kind of take over. Towards the end of the second act and even the explanation ending I was a bit confused so that alone had me really liking the movie… I couldn’t guess what was about to happen. Everyone always complains that there’s no originality in Hollywood anymore. Which may be true because a lot of how this movie started felt like Ocean’s Eleven.

Bottom line you’re probably going to have to watch this movie twice to fully understand where the twists came from.

Rating:

  • Overall rating of the movie:  9 out of 10
  • Cinematography: 8 out of 10 (camera stunt work is decent),
  • Editing: 9 out of 10
  • Special effects: 7 out of 10
  • Audio: 8 out of 10
  • Acting: 10 out of 10
  • Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Much better to watch at home so you can really understand it. Worthy of a rental, in my eyes. But it would look nice on a shelf if you have friends over.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace” . Your eLEWsive Thought Provided by: “LEW System”

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW

The Avengers Movie Review

WOW… UM SIMPLY WOW. This movie rocks on all cylinders, Joss Whedon, PLEASE for the love of God stay on to make this movie’s future sequels. I WILL TRY NOT TO SPOIL TOO MUCH!!

Robert Downey Jr. Robert Downey Jr.
Chris Evans Chris Evans
Mark Ruffalo Mark Ruffalo
Chris Hemsworth Chris Hemsworth
Scarlett Johansson Scarlett Johansson
Jeremy Renner Jeremy Renner
Tom Hiddleston Tom Hiddleston
Clark Gregg Clark Gregg
Cobie Smulders Cobie Smulders
Stellan Skarsgård Stellan Skarsgård
Samuel L. Jackson Samuel L. Jackson
Gwyneth Paltrow Gwyneth Paltrow
Paul Bettany Paul Bettany
Jarvis (voice)
Alexis Denisof Alexis Denisof
Tina Benko Tina Benko
NASA Scientist

Director: Joss Whedon

Writer: Zak Penn and Joss Whedon (story) Joss Whedon (screenplay)

Every penny that was put in to this movie, which according to IMDB, is estimated at  $220,000,000–YEA THAT MUCH.

Joss Whedon directed this movie as well as wrote it (along with Zak Penn) and, as I’ve said previously with Cabin In the Woods, he really knows how to write. His expertise in character dialogue is second to none. He uses a lot of quick wit & exciting banter between all the cast, and not one character overshadows another. He’s a writer who has written for Marvel before in various comics, so he understands and respects the material and for the most part–thanks in part to the acting, all the characters are spot on with their delivery. “I’m not big on inside jokes…. I like people who’ve never seen the Avengers, to have as much fun as people who have been waiting for this movie their whole lives.”-Joss Whedon. That statement is so true about this movie. There’s a rule at Marvel Comics: Treat every issue as if it were someone’s first ever issue. The writers there all have to abide by that, and if you are a writer, I bet you can imagine how much of a challenge it is to do that on a monthly or even sometimes a weekly basis.

HULK: New actor, Mark Ruffalo portrays both Bruce Banner and the hulk in this movie. His take on it was more witty and determined, as Bruce, like he knew his role from the start. He is MY favourite hero for his brute strength and I’ll have you know, there isn’t much left out to show how strong he is. I WILL SAY however, I don’t like the new hulk design because in the Ed Norton film, he had more of a realistic body build. Instead of just muscle he had RIPPED, DEFINED muscle, and this one reminded me of the bad Ang Lee hulk movie. Basically, Ed Norton is a better Bruce on looks alone, Mark… well not so much. I didn’t like how they made him a bit more barbaric at times either, but we are yet again in a “reboot” phase for this character in a way. This though, is by far the best hulk we have ever seen, and I know I’ve contradicted myself a few times, but it’s a love hate thing.

Iron Man: If you ever felt he was just a dude in s suit, who early on [*SPOILER*] Captain America, thinks just the same thing, then you are SURELY MISTAKEN. He is used probably the most, but in recent comic history, this is about right since he is basically the brains of missions. Tony Stark is EVERYWHERE in this movie, and his witty banter with EVERY hero in this movie is dead on to his arrogance. Spider-Man is like that in a way, constantly making jokes, this is the kind of  Spider-Man I’d like to see one day. Basically, his role was improved upon to be more of a hero, but otherwise still the same old Stark

Thor: SORRY LADIES…no shirt off here, but he probably has the best entrance to this story, outside of Hulk where it was being constantly teased to the audience. He had a lot of the charm that he has in the comics in this film. His origin movie focused a lot more of the moral, but this time he is all action.

Captain America: THIS IS BY FAR HIS BEST SHOWING. I thought Chris did an amazing job in “Captain America: The First Avenger” but they got his role down pat in this movie. He was a leader, a tactician, a soldier, brave, out of touch with the times and very American (p.s. stay after the credits… just look at cap and think about it while keeping in mind where Bush sent troops). Chris Evans is an under rated actor, and even though most (critics) don’t take comic book movies serious, watching this should make you see all, if not  just the “Big Three” (Iron Man, Thor & Captain America) as good an actor as any.

Nick Fury:  Sam has done this role a total of 4 times previously (of course we aren’t counting his face being used to revamp Nick Fury in the Ultimate Marvel Universe where most of these films have been based on), but this is the first time we see him as a man who knows what must be done sees what’s he’s being told, but says that isn’t the smarter way of doing things. Basically we see why he’s the head of  S.H.I.E.L.D. and why Sam Jackson is still the most bad ass of all actors.

Black widow: Scarlett has never been more than a pretty face to me. She has both good and bad moments in this film, but more so good than bad. Her best scenes come from the first half of the movie, I’m not a fan of Black Widow so moving on.

Hawkeye: The archer was introduced during the “Thor” film, and I’m sure to many, was a highlight to the film. He has a “secondary” role, but was much like the bad ass that was seen in the”Ultimates”  (you really need to read these two volumes, it’s by far the best “Avengers” story you will ever read in your entire life). When the second half of the movie rolls out, you will know what I’m talking about.

Loki: Tom Hiddleston really understands how to use his face to drive a scene. I thought he had the best skill outside of Anthony Hopkins in the Thor movie. He may not have been the single best actor in this movie, but he definitely isn’t overshadowed by anyone else’s performance (this is, I’m sure, in part to great direction). He was on the verge of being a villain in Thor, but here he is CLEARLY someone that has lost his way, holds a jealous grudge towards his adoptive brother, and, just like in the comics, a very evil villain who likes to show off for sport.

In many recent years Marvel comics has had many brand cross over books from: Civil War, Secret Invasion & most recently, Fear Itself.  Seeing this movie reminded me of a lot of those movies and given a few tweaks here and there, I think its very possible to see the crossover stories on the big screen. I sure as hell hope if any story gets made, Civil War and World War Hulk gets done.

LASTLY, the camera work for this film is amazing, the use of the depth 3-D helps the movie in so many ways. I know many don’t like 3-D, but that’s in part to many not understanding it.Don Cheadle said it best, “Look, it’s me. I’m here. Deal with it. Let’s move on.” – Iron Man 2 – Rhodes. Many need to adapt those words to the use of 3-D. There is minimal shaky camera work in the movie, it mostly pretty clear minus maybe two fight scenes, though one is due to lighting which is why it’s not as great. I don’t know if this is my favourite thing about this movie, but I love  the fact that it is a full circle movie, everything brought up is then somehow mentioned again in a fresh new way. There are two “after credits scenes”, so be sure to stay and watch.

  • Overall rating of the movie: 4.8 out of 5,
  • Cinematography: 4.5 out of 5,
  • Editing: 4.5 out of 5,
  • Audio: 4 out of 5,
  • Acting: 4 out of 5,
  • Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Theatre in the best way you can (like Imax or something). Then blu ray, save up for a 3-D t.v. then buy the blu-ray 3-D version.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace” and May the Force be with you!

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW