JRForan

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from New Britain, CT

  • Activity

    • 3 years ago

      JRForan
    • 3 years ago

      JRForan
    • Terminator: Genisys Review

      4 years ago

      JRForan

      As I took my seat in the theater this afternoon, I was prepared to be completely disappointed in Terminator: Genisys. I paid to go see it because I was a fan of the franchise, but everything I read said that it was Terminator: Salvation levels of bad which, in my opinion, meant it would be one of the worst movies I've ever seen. After the film finished, however, the only people I was upset with was the people who said it was that bad and whoever cut the 2 trailers for the film.

      Terminator: Genisys is a fun time at the movies and really puts the Terminator franchise back on the right track. It's not going to win any awards, but I enjoyed every minute of the film. In fact. I had a very similar feeling watching Genisys as I did watching Jurassic World, in that it felt like I was finally back in a world that I've been missing for a good 10 years. The writing did it's job well, there was one moment the special effects got a little iffy, but overall, they held up well, Arnold puts on a great performance in the role he was always meant to play, Emilia Clarke does a fantastic job filling Sarah Connor's shoes, Jai Courtney is a Kyle Reese you root for, Jason Clarke never disappoints, and J.K. Simmons absolutely steals the show.

      I don't want to talk to much about it because there are some things that the trailers don't spoil (surprisingly enough). I'll end this by saying Terminator: Genisys is well worth the price of admission and is a solid addition to the Terminator franchise.

    • My Thoughts on Ant-Man

      4 years ago

      JRForan

      Lately, I've been getting a question fairly regularly: "What are your thoughts on Ant-Man?"

      My thoughts are as simple as the question: "I'm incredibly excited."

      Let me give you some simple facts as to why.

      1.) I'm a fan of Ant-Man as a character and I have been for the last 2 years. Granted, I'm more a fan of the Hank Pym version and don't know a whole heck of a lot about Scott Lang, but the powers, the technology, and the universe revolving around the character of Ant-Man are awesome.Hank Pym himself is awesome, and the little I know about Scott Lang makes him seem awesome.

      2.) The cast for the movie looks great. Paul Rudd is a joy to watch on screen. He brings very real emotion to all of his performances and he can always make audiences laugh. Michael Douglas is awesome and he always puts on a great show. Corey Stoll is just starting to get more roles and he totally deserves it just based off of his House of Cards acting. Evangeline Lilly is beautiful and tallented, and she's shown me that she has acting ability since Lost. The rest of the non-main cast members that I've seen or heard of before are also top notch.

      3.) When was the last bad Marvel movie. Sure, I wasn't a huge fan of the Ed Norton Hulk film, and I personally took a long time to come around on Iron Man 3, but Marvel hasn't had a bad movie since 2007 (the year of Ghost Rider, Rise of the Silver Surfer, and Spider-Man 3). Their track record has been on point since the establishment of Marvel Studios, and has only gotten better since the Disney buy-out leading to this year, which has one of the most entertaining and incredible Marvel comic movies, Age of Ultron (That's right, I say it's one of the best comic book movies ever made. Sue me.) Marvel hasn't been steering us wrong lately, and they won't start now.

      So yes, I am very excited for Ant-Man. I'll be seeing it at the midnight premiere, and I'm sure it will be extremely enjoyable.

    • It Follows: A Review

      4 years ago

      JRForan

      I find myself in a situation that I truly never have before. I just went to a movie with a friend of mine, and now that I'm home, I find myself needing to share what I just saw. I just saw the film It Follows and, my God was it absolutely incredible.

      It Follows is a horror movie. When I first saw the trailers, I was absolutely convinced the film would be nothing but pop-scares for 2 hours, leaving a fresh urine smell to the theater, after all, that is what most horror movies go for these days.What the film was, however, was something that hasn't been done in a good long while: a horror movie. Through the entire hour and 40 minute run time, there was 1 pop-scare in the film and 1 very short shot of something gory. The rest of the film was straight thriller style terror, sort of like the original Halloween. You can always see this slow-moving monster coming, and no matter how far you go, eventually it catches up to you. It also has those moments where things are super drawn out, with the (absolutely fantastic) music behind it, and you're sure something terrible is about to pop out, but it doesn't come. It's excellent at building tension, which is way more scary than a bloody face popping out from behind the refrigerator as soon as you close the door.

      Another thing I loved about the film is it just sort of throws you in. There's no exposition of, "Oh, this thing is killing people because it's a ghost and someone stole it's mother's pop-tarts and here's 15 minutes of backstory that won't become important until the last 10 minutes of the film." No. It goes, "This is the monster. Here are the rules it follows. Go." and it immediately sucks you in.

      And the music and the cinematography and the atmosphere. Ugh. It puts you in this world, doesn't really give you a time period it takes place in and doesn't express a location any more than "Michigan" and that's only if you read the signs and license plates. It explains exactly what it needs to explain and then, much like the monster in the movie, it slowly creeps forward.And then it uses these around the room pans and these shots where you can just see out into the background so you can see where the monster is, all the while the fantastic 80's horror synth score is playing and you feel this building and building of tension until it hits a moment of both you and the character screaming in your head, "I NEED TO GET OUT OF HERE NOW!"

      It's also incredibly original. In a time when every movie coming out is an adaptation of a book, an adaptation to a comic, a prequel, a sequel, or a straight up remake, It Follows brings something fresh to the table. Now I am a big fan of creature lore and this movie makes it's rules and follows them throughout. Now I don't want to spoil any part of this movie at all (because I really think everyone should go see this film), so I won't go into said rules at all, but they work and they're new, and it's really freaking interesting.

      Now, to be fair, I will say a couple of negative things (mind you, they're the only two thing I can think of) about the film. When it first started, the acting seemed a little clunky. It felt like, "These are the words that were written in my script. I present them to you"... for the first 10 minutes of the movie. But as soon as things start happening and the monster first is mentioned, I was immediately hooked in. Also, the ending is a bit of a horror cliche, but it works really well with this film, so I was more than okay with it.

      What I'm trying to say is, I absolutely LOVED It Follows. If you like horror films, and I mean real horror films and not pop-scare-gore-porn, you should really see this movie. If you're a fan of the classic 80s thrillers, you NEED to see this movie. It is modern horror done right.

    • Best Picture Thoughts and Feelings

      4 years ago

      JRForan

      The 2015 Oscars are fast approaching and this is the first year I have ever seen all of the nominees. As a self-proclaimed film buff (or movie nerd, depending on who you ask), I figured I'd give my 2 cents on all the nominees. So without further adieu, let's get started.

      I wanted to start with the film I feel doesn't even deserve a nomination: The Grand Budapest Hotel. Now don't get me wrong, I love me some Ralph Fiennes, but this movie is just not great. Not even that good, really. It's the same movie Wes Anderson has been making for 14 years. Some writing style, same film making, same performances from the cast, same production design. It brings nothing new to the table and it just isn't a good movie. Plain and simple.

      Next, the movie that isn't great, but I can understand the nomination in some way: American Sniper. I understand this film is a commercial success, but honestly, it isn't great. Bradley Cooper, puts on a fine performance, but it's nothing special. The writing, the directing, it's fine, but it's nothing to write home about. All I felt while watching that movie is that Clint Eastwood was trying as hard as he possibly could to make "The Hurt Locker" but he couldn't do it. So he shoveled as much of it as he could into a bucket and made something that could almost be considered a propaganda film for the U.S. military and for Veteran's Services. I can appreciate that they used some real military men in the movie, but over all, it's trying way to hard to be something that it isn't.

      Next, the 3 way tie for Second Place: The Theory of Everything, Selma, and Boyhood. Now these movies still weren't mind-blowingly great, but there was something in them that makes them kind of special and worth the nod from the academy.
      Now, I'll be honest, I could not stand Boyhood. It was about an hour too long and I hated every single character aside from Ethan Hawke, and even he got a bit much at times. The writing was pretentious and the acting amplified that tremendously. I spent the entire movie wanting to punch the main kid in the face; to just shake him and tell him to stop being such a prick and be nice to his mother who is struggling to give him a decent life. The one thing that made it special was how it was filmed. Spending 13 years filming the same movie is an interesting and bold was to make a film, and I really truly appreciate that.
      The Theory of Everything was fine. It was a bit slow and the filming was just okay, but the portrayal of a person slowly succumbing to ALS was amazing. The struggle with the disease was made so real, and that's was I truly enjoyed about the film. I could care less that it was Stephen Hawking. Just the fact that it was a person and his wife and family having to come to terms with the disease and slowly slipping over time was heartbreaking. That's what made it worth watching.
      Selma, again, was fine. The cinematography and direction was terrible, in my personal opinion. It's like Ava DuVernay was trying to rip off Tom Hooper and Zack Snyder at the same time and it does not work out. Also, the fact that Oprah tries to plant herself into as many scenes as possible not only took me out of the film completely but aggravated me to no end. Her character had no true purpose. It was written in probably just to get Oprah some screen time. The performances from the resy of the cast, though, were fantastic.David Oyelowo is a spot on King and it's a joy to watch him work. It's also a very real, humanizing take of MLK, which is incredibly fresh and made the movie that much more interesting.

      Now, the top 3 and the almost 3 way tie: Birdman, The Imitation Game, and Whiplash. These movies were absolutely fantastic in so many ways and I enjoyed every second of them.
      The Imitation Game had some truly standout performances. I am truly loving Keira Knightley's return to film in the past few years. The writing in the film is also fantastic and was a joy to watch. All in all it was a fantastic and truly interesting and remarkable film, especially for a guy who loves World War II history.
      Birdman was a 100% good time at the movies. Now I love me some long takes, so this movie's cinematography, editing, and directing knocked it out of the park. Top that off with some absolutely amazing acting and writing and you have a serious contender for best picture. It was so fresh and new, it was a joy for the eyes. And it was so fun, watching the transitions from scene to scene. It was theater meets film and it was amazing.
      Whiplash is my favorite of all the movies nominated. It's my choice for best picture and if J.K. Simmons doesn't walk away with the award for best supporting actor, I will lose my mind. The writing, the acting, the directing, the music, the moral... It was a film this generation of do-no-work-expect-massive-rewards kids needs as a kick in the pants. It is an interesting and remarkable film to watch and it is a film I know I will come back to time and time again when someone asks me for a movie recommendation. It is, in a word, brilliant.

      So that's my thoughts and feelings. Take them as you will, seeing as I have no formal education in the art of film. Whether you agree or not, these are just my opinions, and I look forward to seeing who the big winner is on the 22nd.

    • Rest in Peace, Monty Oum

      4 years ago

      JRForan

      When I was in middle school, I watched an animated video online called "Haloid." It was one of the coolest things I had ever seen, no matter how many times I watched it.

      A few years later, that same animation style showed up on the web series "Red vs. Blue" and I found out it was the same animator: A man named Monty Oum.

      When Monty joined the RT crew just over 5 years ago, he created some of the most interesting, mind blowing content I had ever seen on the internet. He added new elements to shows I already loved and created new shows which were fantastic in their own right.

      I never met him, but Monty was an inspiration to me, both creatively and in how I live my life. Rest in peace, Monty Oum. There are few who can do what you did as well as you did it, and even fewer who could inspire people the way you did. 33 was far too young to go.

    • The most out there ASOIAF Theory

      4 years ago

      JRForan

      So recently, I've been reading a bunch of Game of Thrones theories online to prepare for The Winds of Winter and I had a thought. A radical, out there, crazy thought that I've yet to hear in any community discussions. All of Cersei's children are known to be the spawn of Jaime, but what if they aren't? What if they are, in fact the true born children of Robert Baratheon, are at least some of them are? Just listen.

      Here are some things we know. Cersei and Robert did have sex on multiple occasions. Now, while Cersei says when he would drunkenly stumble into their marriage bed she would finish him off, "in other way." Now, something we know from modern science is that the pull out is the least effective form of contraception, so there is a chance that Robert put a baby in her belly.

      Now, I know what you're thinking. What about the hair color. I have an argument for that, too. House Baratheon is said to have direct blood ties to House Targaryen. House Targaryen has white blonde hair, giving it an almost silver look. This would mean House Baratheon holds the recessive trait for blonde hair. Now, Cersei and all of House Lannister has blonde hair, giving her the genotype bb. Robert would have the genotype Bb, given the Targaryen blood. Now, it's been a while since I've done a Punnett square, but from what I remember, if say Robert and Cersei have a 50% chance of having a child with blonde hair. Now, it's more than likely that most of Cersei's children are in fact Jaime's, but if one of them was, in fact, Robert's blood, then there's a decent chance it would be blonde.

      GRRM loves his twists, so wouldn't it be insane if he completely destroys Stannis's claim by giving Robert and Cersei a true born heir? I know it's a little tonfoil-y, but it would be pretty awesome. Anyway, there's my theory. Just a crazy thought from 4 AM last night. Continue with your lives.

    • Summer Blockbusters: Finale: X-Men

      5 years ago

      JRForan

      This is my last installment of these movie reviews. Maybe I'll be back to do more the next time a movie comes out that I care about, but hey, who knows. Alright, let's do this.

      X-Men: Days of Future Past: Now this movie, I have been waiting for since X2. Finally, Bryan Singer is back to put all of your favorite mutants on the silver screen. As a kid, I loved the X-Men. As an adult, I continue to love the X-Men. What I'm trying to say here is, I love the X-Men. This movie made my love them even more. The movie starts with quite possibly one of the coolest action scenes in movie history. From there, it just continues to get more and more bad ass. I really want to keep this review short for 2 reasons. 1, I want you to be able to stop reading this as soon as possible you that you can go right now and see this movie, and 2, I want to be able to leave and go see this movie again. There are things I could say, like the acting is phenomenal, the writing is incredible, the visuals are spectacular, the sound is amazing. I could, and have, said all of these things. And if that doesn't make you want to leave and go see this movie right now, then let me give you this one final sentence which will, for sure, make you want to go see this movie right now: This movie has officially taken Wolverine: Origins out of the X-Men movie canon. Have I sold you now? I bet I have. So what are you doing still reading this? GO SEE X-MEN DAYS OF FUTURE PAST RIGHT NOW!!!

    • Summer Blockbusters: Pt 2: Godzilla

      5 years ago

      JRForan

      As previously stated, these are just my views on the first blockbuster movies kicking off the summer season. Take them as you will. Here we go.

      Godzilla: Okay, admittedly, I went into this movie with some pretty high expectations. I mean, the director compared it to Jaws and Jurassic Park, two of my all-time favorite movies, and everyone was talking about how great the movie was. Not to mention, Bryan Cranston, star of one of my top 3 favorite shows of all, Breaking Bad, was given a lead role. I was pumped. Then I watched the movie. Now don't get me wrong, I loved looking at the screen. The VFX were absolutely fantastic. Any time the monsters were on the screen, I couldn't look away. But here's the problem: The monsters, especially Godzilla himself, as an incredible lack of screen time. The movie constantly follows these characters, 99% of which are uninteresting. The remaining 1% is Bryan Cranston. Here's another problem, and another rather large spoiler, Bryan Cranston, who seemed to be the main character of the film from the trailers, is dead within the first 45 minutes of the film, possibly earlier. The pacing of the movie is also incredibly poor. The characters talk about doing exciting things, and then when the exciting things happen, they become boring things because boring characters are doing them. I suppose, in the end, my problem with Godzilla is the same problem I had with Pacific Rim: When you make a movie about giant robots or giant monsters, the movie has to be about the giant robots or the giant monsters. If I wanted to watch a movie about boring actors and their relationships with other boring actors, I could just watch The Notebook. When I go see Pacific Rim, I want to see Idras Elba get into a giant robot suit and kick some monster ass. When I go see Godzilla, I want to see Bryan Cranston yell, "Holy crap, look at that giant monster. He's going to fight that other giant monster!" and then I want to see Godzilla kick some giant monster ass. Unfortunately, neither of those movies delivered on anything other than cool VFX.

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