Monthly Archives: August, 2014

Hercules

Before I start the plot and overview of this movie, there has been many versions of this legendary character played by different actors over the years and many adaptions in TV series. There is another movie a week or so before or at the same time which has a different title but a different version. This one has Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson in it and for me it was the sole reason I like to watch any movie with him in it.

Plot

The story starts with the twelve labors of Hercules told by Hercules nephew who admittedly is tied up over a spike pointing directly to his bottom. As he tells his captures the story of his uncle, Hercules is coming to save him with his band of friends – which consists of a fighting soothsayer, a dog-like fighter, a fighter who likes gold and an amazonian woman archer. From there he and his band finds a inn to celebrate but a woman is asking for Hercules help to save the kingdom from wild creatures and a bandits. Hercules felt something is amiss but he had no choice to follow the task at hand. But he had one thing that haunted his memories which he needed to face, which seem what was not his fault.

Overview

As all movies or TV series of this mythological character is centered by a demigod –  half human and god – Hercules, son of Zeus. The first person I knew who played this character is Steve Reeves, from the Italian films from the 1950 to 1960 and these actors also played Hercules – Gordon Scott, Kirk Morris, Mickey Hargitay, Mark Forest, Alan Steel, Dan Vadis, Brad Harris, Reg Park, Peter Lupus (billed as Rock Stevens) and Michael Lane. Steve Reeves was the best actor for Hercules and still is for me(even though he died in 2000). The others were good for their parts. Kevin Sorbo in the Hercules TV Series was okay in his role. I liked Dwayne Johnson’s version better than the others. It also felt like I was watching the old Italian movie with Steve Reeves – almost. I can’t compare the two movies at all but say one thing – they seemed to complement each other.

Even though this was like a remake of the 1958 film but it was not the same – different. Where? Well like all legends of Hercules,  each story points are almost the same but each writer who wrote the screenplay shows it differently. The movie Directors direct it to their vision with the screenwriters and even though the Hercules I remember showed all the labors through the movie until the last; this movie showed it all the eleven  in a few seconds and his last labor was the Cerberus – a three head dog. This was the haunting dream of Hercules where his wife and his children dies – thinking he killed them. This is what was his last labor was about.

The wild creatures and Bandits were considered as centaurs – half man and horse. But of course this movie dispels such creatures as fake unlike the first movie I watched. This was a movie that is as close to fact if there was a real Hercules as a man. If we were to look at this movie as a real factual account then a man’s sheer strength can be seen as a falsehood if Hercules had a band of men and a woman. Of course, the way this movie portrayed the story is very excellent in such a way that it may look like Hercules was a son of a god.  Oh his band of friends, Hercules save them from dangers we know nothing about them(just that the characters say it). Then there was a part in the movie where Hercules pushes a giant statute down the stairs in the advancing King’s army who he trained. If that is only the sheer strength of a man then we must come to the conclusion if he really was a son of Zeus.

This seems to me that fact or myth; is it possible for a man to push a statute at two-storey house or more tall to be pushed by a single man.  Can a mere man push that much tonne of rock? Sheer strength and will power is possible … but not a marble rock statue. All I know is this and by this I mean in my own thoughts; this movie is up to the viewer to sort out whether to watch it or not. I liked this movie because it showed that myth can be false at times and may be true as well. This movie also shows that soothsayers can be wrong as well but they can also be a help when they are needed.

It show fact as truth and myths as false but some of these facts and myths seemed to be the other way round; eg, centaurs were really men on horseback. Another example is the Cerberus is really three hungry wolves. Hercules as the man is the only thing that I found to be something to wonder about. Was he real or myth? That is a question mixed in mythology. I must say I really enjoyed this movie to the action and almost mythological atmosphere that portrays well. ♠♠♠½

Guardians of the Galaxy

Plot

After the death of Peter’s mother, he runs away from the hospital clucking the present, his walk-man to be abducted by aliens… twenty-six years after, his persona Star-Lord sets to get a silver orb which holds the Infinity stone. Once he retrieves it, he soon discovers that a Kree revolutionist known as Ronan the Accuser is after the stone for Thanos but Ronan takes it himself. Thanos’s adopted daughter Gamora is also on the case to retrieve it from Star-Lord at the behest of Ronan but she has her own agenda. Then a bounty hunters Rocket and Groot are also on the hunt for Star-Lord, but on Xandar the Nova Corps intervene. They then went into a prison where they meet up with Drax the Destroyer.  From escape to Knowhere and back to Xandar the unlikely crew of the yet to be Guardians of the Galaxy form a bond which starts to peel away to their final confrontation with Ronan.

Overview

Marvel comic movies sometimes shows more at the end of the film which I urge everyone to watch. Thanos seems to be the center character in the movie – even though he is not shown so much. Here in Guardians of the Galaxy, Thanos mostly seen for a two to three minutes than in the end of the movie, Green Lantern. Its my thought that Thanos is a major player in the Marvel Universe.  Peter Quill is a character who is half human and alien like his father – a star child.

Groot played by Vin Diesel is a perfect for a tree like person – “I am Groot.” is a saying that seem to be tiring but with Rocket who understood him was played well. It seems that occasions there seemed to be times that I wonder when will it get funny and before I even thought it, it started with Rocket looking for their bounty Peter Quill. As you can guess Stan Lee and a young woman come to Rocket’s ipad type device and the comedic one liners starts and I laugh out loud.

Of course, Groot deny his drinking as Rocket catches him… Then you see how the laughs follow as well as all the action that this science fiction comic come to the big screen. It is more computer generated but it seem flawless, yet my technical mind could see a slight flaw and not noticeable as you watch the movie. It was just a better movie than Green Lantern.  Like I said that Thanos is the one behind all the evil in the Marvel Universe seems far-fetched but yet his minions seem to play a role – like Ronan the Accuser.

I enjoyed this movie, Chris Pratt seemed to enjoy being Peter Quill aka StarLord even though, the inaptness of the character which seem to show through the whole group of the Guardians. But it also showed that over time people of different backgrounds, race and culture could actually get along. That in itself is the optimum moral to the story. ♠♠♠♠½

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

This week just passed, I was just enjoying the movies that came out. The first is the remake(well story, a little different) of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes then followed by Guardians of the Galaxy, Hercules and last Deliver Us from Evil. On Tuesday which is my budget night to watch the movies at my local theater, I usually take my mum with me to watch movies because she likes movies I like to watch. This  was what we both planned on Friday, as well.  Friday was a full day of watching three movies and I did enjoy the day; so did mum. In the next few hours/days or so, you will read the next three posts about the other movies I’ve mentioned.

Here is the review.

Plot

Follows from the Rise of the Planet of the Apes, an cotangent called the Simian Flu went viral. Caesar and his apes are learning to live by some rules like “Ape no kill ape” and etc. The surviving humans go to the dam to switch on the electricity but are faced with the apes as an organised force. Koba hates humans and revolts against them and Caesar.

Overview

Unlike the original Planet of the Apes five movies which in its time was and is for me is a classic end of the human race portrayal of what it should look like in the future.  End of the world scenarios are a probable event which could happen in the future and yet movies, books and comics show us this and still we don’t heed to the warnings. Of course, the future is not set in stone but we don’t have  much time. These two sentence seem so far-fetched  to even think about but that is what I thought when I watched Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. Under the current intelligence of the old and the new stories of the Planet of the Apes itself is a book which was written by Pierre Boulle. Little did I know that until I did a search for it.  Of course I should have known this but I still like the old movies as well as the new.

The overall view of the movie is verily linked by one thing and that is humanity itself. We once were apes as we evolved into humans so will the apes. Intelligence is taught and the serum from the the Rise of the Planet of the Apes plays a part for the apes; we see it expand by Caesar strong stance in the beginning with Koba who’s son is shot by a human Carver – after the hunting of deer. Caesar’s son Ash is conflict by his fathers’ strict upbringing and Koba sense of hating humans. Koba takes controls and Ash lets him lead and war was inevitable course for the Apes and Human but a man, his wife and son bonds with two apes. The man Malcolm convinces Caesar to get the Hydo-Electric dam working but Koba sets thing in motion which creates the war between Humans and Apes because he found a store of armor that the Humans have kept hidden. After getting Carvers’ hat, Koba plans the war that he hates humans. Meanwhile, Malcolm’s son is communicating to an orange ape while Caesar fears his wife is dying after the birth of a son. Because of Carver stash a gun away, Caesar had to tell Malcolm and his party to leave. Meanwhile Caesar returns to his wife who is was close to dying as Malcolm, his wife and son with the orange ape sees the reasons. But Malcolm’s wife had some medications to save Caesar’s wife, this made Caesar say to Malcolm to stay for one day. Humans and apes help to put on the power together. Little did they know Koba had  made his decision after fighting Caesar.

Ape kills Ape but ape survives thanks to Malcolm and family, during which Koba convinces all apes except for the apes loyal to Caesar. Ash encounters Malcolm and finds out his father is alive and follows …

In this movie it showed that the writers  showed humanity at its best and worst; and ultimately in to two types of homo-sapiens – human and ape. The sense of leadership that Caesar wanted was peace like between humans and apes.

I stated above, the Planet of the Apes is based on a book which I haven’t read, but it seems the old and new movie adaptions seem to have one thing reoccurring that a future apes will survive and humans will become their slaves or prisoners. Charlton Heston’s character from the past to the future of earth didn’t get to know where he was until he was in the forbidden zone where he saw the statue of liberty. Mark Wahlberg’s character lived in the satellite above earth  and the apes on board escaped from their cages; he and others went to the escape-pods as the satellite started to crash to earth. Even though, those two Planet of the apes had different story-lines where apes who used sign language while the original talked; the basic emphasis on time travel seemed very much through out the movies – even though the timeline is awkward to understand.

Of course the old and new versions still play with the main points I’ve stated above, even though I enjoyed it it was much better than the first two of the newer versions. This movie for me is like the original one with Charlton Heston – The Planet of the Apes.  To compare it with the original is a bold thing for me to say but it was moving as the original was. ♥