Movie Review: GHOST IN THE SHELL – completely uninteresting adaptation of the famous manga franchise, that plays like bad 80s sci fi.

Ghost In The Shell, Scarlett Johansson’s most recent action movie, can barely be discussed without mentioning the newish cinematic pejorative “whitewashing” as an integral part of any criticism.  I’m not going to put any kind of sociopolitical slant on this review, but if you haven’t heard the term, it refers to white actors being cast in roles that certain groups believe should go to ethnic actors.  It’s not an entirely unfounded criticism (Matt Damon’s recent monster movie The Great Wall was called out for it), and certain movies kinda invite it openly.  Case in point, is Ghost In The Shell, based on the famous manga franchise.  It’s a particularly egregious example – not only does Scarlett Johannson play a character that pretty much should have been played by an Asian actress, but almost all of the main roles are played by white actors.  And they didn’t even bother to switch the action to the west either!

Continue reading “Movie Review: GHOST IN THE SHELL – completely uninteresting adaptation of the famous manga franchise, that plays like bad 80s sci fi.”

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Movie Review: CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR

Civil War

Captain America: Civil War bears almost no resemblance to the comic book by Mark Millar and Steve McNiven from about 10 years ago, and when I heard about a cinematic attempt to do even a light adaptation of the book, I was dubious. On one hand, the Russos did tremendous work with Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and that movie had almost nothing to do with any of those arcs either, but then I heard the increasing cast count for this one, and got more than just a little wary. The sign that a superhero movie like this is going to hit the skids is when the cast begins to overwhelm the archplot – but when you are ostensibly making even a light adaptation of a character-dense, universe-changing plot like Civil War, you can’t avoid a giant cast. Continue reading “Movie Review: CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR”

Movie Review: UNDER THE SKIN – arty, fascinating sci-fi that shows Scarlett Johansson can still bring her A game.

Under the Skin

Watched Jonathan Glazer’s Under The Skin over a couple of days due to the odd times of the day I was viewing. There’s plenty of people who have written off Scarlett Johansson as an actor thanks to her big movies (Avengers: Age of Ultron) and celeb status, but she’s been great before (Ghost World, Lost In Translation) and she’s great here too. Continue reading “Movie Review: UNDER THE SKIN – arty, fascinating sci-fi that shows Scarlett Johansson can still bring her A game.”

Movie Review: AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON – underthought and full of generic action. Time for Whedon to exit the franchise.

Age of Ultron

Opening weekend, Avengers: Age of Ultron. The theater was predictably packed, but me and my two fellow movie patrons got decent seats so my judgement of the movie wasn’t prejudiced by a shitty viewing experience.

Okay, so how was it? As I write, the movie is sitting at over $600M global box office, but is that ever a real judge of quality? In most cases, never. I’ll be completely honest, I didn’t love it it, never came close. Continue reading “Movie Review: AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON – underthought and full of generic action. Time for Whedon to exit the franchise.”