Lucky # Slevin
***1/2 our of ****
Rarely am I priviledged enough to watch a really, really good movie. That's they way with most of us, I imagine, unless most movie watchers are a lot more discerning that I am. ^_^ Anyway, Lucky # Slevin was just that - a really, really good movie. It had a great cast who can actually act (novel concept!), sharp writing, an entertaining store with a nice little twist (if slightly predictable) at the end, and did I mention the great cast?
Okay, here we go:
Hapless Josh Hartnett plays Slevin Iforgetthelastname who goes to visit a friend, Nick. First person he runs into is an adorable Lucy Lui:
And just so we're all clear, I do not often like Lucy Lui, but she was good in this movie.
And due to a case of mistaken identity, Slevin is promptly hauled off to meet with mob boss #1, Morgan Freeman! Guess what! Nick owes Freeman money, and Freeman thinks Slevin is Nick! How can things get any worse?
THEN he gets hauled off to see mob boss #2, Sir Ben Kingsley! More owed money! Things are worse!
Throw in slithery hitman Bruce Willis, and you've got a real mess!
Oh NO! Poor hapless Slevin and Adorable Lucy Lui must now figure out what to do!
But wait! Are things truly as they seem?
And that was the severely abbreviated version of the plot. ^_^
The acting is great, and the banter between characters was wonderful. I love it when movies pull off that light, constant, tit for tat banter. And like I said before, the casting is great. I mean, how much more perfect can you get than Freeman and Kingsley as mob bosses? And we all know how badass Bruce Willis is as a hitman. Like we've never seen that before. ^_^ Stanley Tucci has a smaller part, but he's still great. When Josh Hartnett isn't in terrible chick flicks he's a good actor, and this movie even made me like Lucy Lui. The whole movie is worth watching just for the end-- even if you do guess the twist, it's infinitely satisfying. The movie also a bit more violent than you might expect, so if you don't like a bit of graphic violence with your gangster movies you should probably avoid it.
And in conclusion...
This movie is awesome.
That's it. ^_^ I'm done!
The Showbox, Seattle
Wednesday night was an event that I had been waiting on for a very long time. Dragonforce played the Showbox. Incidentally it was also my birthday, and I can't think of a better place to be on my birthday than at a Dragonforce show!!!
I managed to completely avoid Horse the Band and nearly managed to avoid All That Remains completely. I heard their last song and that was it, thank goodness. The show had sold out, so there were a LOT of people there. I thought that it would mostly be All That Remains fans - after all, how many people in Seattle are into Dragonforce, a power metal band from London? Apparently more than I thought, because I think almost everyone there was there to see Dragonforce. It was pointed out to me later that Dragonforce had recently gotten a lot of exposure from playing Ozzfest this year, so that probably had a lot to do with how many people were there.
The band played very well. There were a few missteps, and I heard a rumor that one of the lead guitarists was completely trashed, but on the whole every one of those guy sare brilliant musicians and it shows. They are also complete dorks.
A lot of the time when they would make jokes the crowd didn't really react. Bad sign. ^_^ But it was obvious that they were having a great time which makes the bad jokes and stupid banter okay. And of course all of the songs were awesome. There really is nothing quite like seeing power metal live. ^_^ The guitarists were a pleasure to watch, and the basist have a monster of an instrument. They were dynamic onstage and totally messing around with each other, and weren't lax about the power metal posing, lead singer especially. Highlights of the show were the songs 'Black Fire', 'Through Fire and Flame', and 'Valley of the Damned'.
Unfortunately about 3/4 of the way through the show I got totally owned by a crowd surfer-- kicked in the side of the head. Hard. Due to a combination of heat, not having been able to get a full lungful of air since Dragonforce started, and the kick, I got lightheaded and felt ill... totally saw stars. So I had to step outside for a few minutes, and I missed a whole song. >_<
I mentioned that 'Valley of the Damned' was one of the highlights of the show. It's my very favorite Dragonforce song, and I had been waiting for them to play it the whole show. When I had to step out for a minute I was afraid I had missed it. But it was their very, very last song. What a way to finish the show. ^_^
Ultimately, the concert was awesome, and I had a great time. I will definitely see them again if I get the opportunity!
**1/2 out of ****
The Covenant is one of the most wholeheartedly silly movies I have ever seen. And you have to love it just for that reason! I only gave it two and a half stars simply because the movie is SO BAD, but that shouldn't suggest that I didn't enjoy it, because I most certainly did! Immensely!
So there's this covenant of four families. The eldest son (at least I think it was the eldest son... I can't really remember) of each family inherits these uber powers. But there's a catch! The uber powers are addicting, and bad for you! If you use them enough it makes you age really really fast, so you become an ancient old man by the time you're forty. Good incentive not to use 'em, huh?
Enter the only son of the lost fifth family!
Naturally, Mr. Fifth Family is baaad news. Totally addicted to the power, and wants more. Main character is approaching his 18th birthday, the time of "Ascension" when the kid turning 18 gets his full powers, and guess what? Bad Guy wants Good Guy to "will" him the power, which will of course kill Good Guy. What might convince Good Guy to do this, you might wonder? Bad Guy holding the Pretty Blond Girl hostage, of course! Oooooh!
I feel that I need to take a moment to explain the best part of this movie. See photo: <---------- This is the main character's best friend. He is also possibly the WORST actor I have ever seen in my life. This is an extremely high distinction because I have seen a lot of movies. I'm not kidding - almost every line he says makes you want to laugh. However, he is definitely eye candy. And when you see the men's locker room scene and behold the god-like body that this actor posseses, you will immediately understand. ^_^ MMMMM! Anyway.... where was I.... The movie has a few things going for it. First and foremost, it tries to take itself a little too seriously, and I think there were multiple scenes that were really, really funny that weren't intended to be humorous. This always makes for an entertaining movie experience! ^_^ The dialog is entertainingly bad and chheesy from start to finish, and the acting is laughable. The special effects are (I'm sure!) where 99% of the budget for this film went, so there was definitely entertainment value there, and the fight scenes were hysterical!
It really is a movie made for teens. Younger teens. So if you see it, just be warned that a sillier action/thriller movie you will never come across. This is a movie you watch purely for a laugh. I went and saw it with Andrew and Bob. Bob appreciated it for what is was, like I did - I think Andrew was somewhat less impressed. ^_^ It's not for everyone.
I went and saw The Wicker Man on Saturday with Andrew and Bob. I didn't really know what it was about, and I couldn't remember the preview, but I thought "hey, Nicholas Cage is in it, it's a horror movie, it can't be that bad. Right? RIGHT??"
No, not right. Very, very wrong in fact.
Nicholas Cage plays a police officer haunted by his failure to save a mother and daughter who are hit by a semi while Cage has them pulled over by the side of the road. Enter former fiance sending a letter pleading for help in finding her missing daughter. Cage goes to creepy isolated island in the pacific northwest and finds himself in a crazy earth worshiping, female dominated commune. >_<
Cage spends most of the movie wandering around the island discovering things, having bad dreams (which seem like they should mean something, but in the end, no, they don't) and trying to get more information out of the ex fiance, who seems perpetually dazed and chronically confused. That's her in the picture. Doesn't she look confused? She looks like that through the whole movie.
The writing is bad, there are plot elements that either go nowhere or I'm just not smart enough to figure out where they wrap up. I'm guessing the former. The acting is all right, and the only thing that saves this movie is Nicholas Cage and a couple of other appealing actresses. Unfortunately, they don't really have much to work with. And of course the biggest thing that drove me crazy were all Nicholas Cage's dreams. They set it up so that it's obviously more than just the dreams of a man haunted by a tragic event. You know, flashbacks at key moments, repeated dreams, etc. But nothing ever comes of it. It doesn't really have any bearing on the main plot. Maybe they were just looking for extra jump scenes, I don't know. But it sucked.