The Badger On: Justice League (Movie)

 

 

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There was not going to be any doubt that I was going to see this movie. Being the DC fangirl that I am I was always going to see it. The Eagle did not come but I knew that he wouldn’t considering his dislike for Ben Affleck. I however was not alone as my niece had requested this movie as her 10th birthday present so she along with her sister and my mother went along on Friday night (17 November 2017) to see it.

I am probably going to be a little more critical on this movie than a lot of fan reaction that I have seen. Don’t get me wrong I did like the movie a lot but I do see its flaws and it could have been a lot better than what it was. With all the problems they had I am not surprised. With the edits to the script and reshoots to Zack Snyder stepping down and Joss Whedon taking over and I also suspect there may have been a few too many hands in the pie at Warner Brothers when it came to editing as well it is not surprising that the movie seemed a little rushed and the plot and villain seeming weak.

They did however get the heroes right. Ben Affleck’s Batman/Bruce Wayne was a showed his vulnerability a lot more in this film. Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman/Diana Prince was the compassionate heart of the team, the den mother. As for the new comers each one of them were in their own way trying to find their place in the world with these new abilities. Ezra Miller’s Flash/Barry Allen is a the light and humour of the film. Jason Momoa Aquaman/Arthur Curry added strength to a character that is seen as weak to those that only know him from the old Superfriends cartoon. Ray Fisher’s Cyborg/Victor Stone I think was the one that I worried about the most as I have a fondness for the Cyborg character but worried that he would not be portrayed quite right. I had nothing to fear though as I think that he was wonderful and added soul to the team.

I guess I can’t talk about the heroes side of things without talking about Superman. I am not the biggest fan of Superman as you may know from my other blog but I have to say I liked him a lot more in this movie than I have before, not that I really had a problem with him in Man of Steel or Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. His disorientation and anger after being resurrected was understandable and I enjoyed his interaction with Flash and their ‘race’ in the movie and also in the credit scene. My elder nieces adores Henry Cavill’s Superman and she gushed about them coming out of the movie.

As stated the plot and the villain were not strong but here goes. I am not going to go into detail about it extensively but I will say that I am not familiar with Steppenwolf as a character as I have not read any books that have him as a character. I know that he has appeared in various DC/Justice League cartoons though he did not make much of an impression on me that I even remembered his name or would know who he was if I was to re-watch. Let just say the arrives meaning to take over and reshape with earth in the name of Darkseid using 3 mother boxes. Batman and Wonder Woman gather up the Flash, Aquaman and Cyborg and using one of the mother boxes resurrect Superman and they take Steppenwolf down.

All the main actors act well and the fight scenes and affect were well handled.

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The Badger On: Your Name (Movie)

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This is the first anime movie that I have done a review on and I couldn’t be happier that it is Makoto Shinkai’s Your Name. I would have loved to have seen this in theatre and I did contemplate it but the timing was never right as it was released here in Australia at the end of last year. I actually tried to torrent it but I am happy that I never did as it was worth the wait.

 

This is a beautifully animated story with a lot of heart and feels and if you like me you will cry by the end of it. The story revolves around Mitsuha, a high school girl living in a small fictional mountain town of Itomori. She is the daughter of the local mayor and lives with her grandmother and little sister in the local shrine where she works as shire-maiden. The other main character is a high school boy named Taki who lives in Tokyo. He is kind, short-tempered and works part-time in an Italian restaurant.

 

They begin to switch bodies every couple of days and they communicate by leaving messages on their phones or writing in notebooks. After Mitsuha sets Taki up with an older co-worker and her mentioning a comet that is supposed to come by as their date finishes the switches stop.

 

Feeling like there is something missing he travels to Mitsuha’s town using memories from the switches and drawings he had made of it. He finds the location but the town had been destroyed by a part of the comet that broken off three years ago with everyone living in the town dying. He locates the isolated shrine and goes there and drinks the saki that Mitsuha had made and they are able to switch once more and is able to warn her of the comet strike. They attempt to write each other names on their hands so they won’t forget each other but they do.

 

Mitsuha races back to town and convinces her friends in assisting in getting the town evacuated. They partially do but Itomori is still destroyed by the comet. 5 years later Taki is looking for a job but feels like there is something or someone missing from his life. Mitsuha has moved to Tokyo and also feels this way. One day they see each in opposing passing trains and they both get off at their next stops and run around Tokyo looking for each other before meeting on a set of stairs in which they ask each other their names.

 

You really have to see this to fully understand it and feel the emotion. As I have said the art in this is gorgeous especially those in and around Itomori though the scenes within Tokyo are also lovely and realistic. The other thing that I would like to mention about this is the music which is also beautiful and suits the movie. It is done by a Japanese rock band Radwimps.

 

I cannot recommend this movie enough

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The Badger On: Spider-Man: Homecoming (Movie)

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I did not see this in the cinema which is I think obvious since it was out a couple of weeks after Wonder Woman. I am also not a fan of Spiderman in general if you have read my review for Captain America: Civil War or any of my Pop Goes the Badger posts in relation to the Marvel in general.

I have seen this twice through the digital copy that I bought through iTunes not so much for me but for my fiancé The Eagle and also for my nieces. I watched it first on my own and then again over the weekend with the Eagle as he is a Spidey fan.

Admittedly I didn’t think much of it the first time that I saw it though my anxiety was pretty bad that day and so I was having a few issues with focussing. I did enjoy it a bit better the second time but I think that it was mainly because the Eagle enjoyed it.

The story starts after the Battle for New York in the Avenger where Adrian Toomes and his salvage company are contracted to clean up the city. They are taken over by a government operation and angry about this he and his employees keep the tech that they had already salvaged and use it to create weapons.

After returning from the battle in airport in Civil War but is told by Tony Stark he is not ready to become an Avenger. He returns to school and annoys Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau) with updates with what he is doing. He does local stuff in the evenings and eventually stops and ATM heist when the crooks where using weapons developed by Toomes.

After another altercation with people working with Toomes Spiderman meets the Vulture. Spider-man is able to track Toomes and cronies to Maryland and he re-joins his school’s academic decathlon team so that he can go to Washington. He sneaks out gets traped but escapes and eventually saves his classmates after they are trapped in an elevator at the Washington Monument.

Coming back to New York Peter find out where the Toomes is going to be next. After a battle on the Staten Island Ferry in which Tony Stark has to come to his rescue Tony tells him off and also takes back the Spider-Man suit. Peter returns to normal school life and asks his crush Liz to the Homecoming dance. When he goes to pick her up he realises that her father is Toomes/Vulture. Toomes also realises that Peter is Spider-Man and threatens him. Peter ends up abandoning Liz at the dance to go after her father. They have another battle in which Spider-Man saves Toomes’s life.

Tony Stark has a change of hearts and offers to allow Peter to join the Avengers but Peter declines saving that he wants to stay local for a while. Tony however does return the suit to Peter.

The performances were good especially Tom Holland as Peter Parker/Spiderman but then he was good in Civil War and they choose the right person this time around. Michael Keaton also played his part well as Adrian Toomes/Vulture but at the same time I think his motivations were a little weak. I enjoy the character of Ned played by Jacob Batalon as the BF/sidekick character to Peter Parker.

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The Badger On: Wonder Woman (Movie)

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So I guess I am a little late in getting this up considering how excited I was to see this movie in the first place. I have also seen it twice now. Once opening weekend with the fiancé (engaged now btw) and again over the weekend with both nieces and mother.

Both times I enjoyed it immensely and will have to say that it is the movie that I have enjoyed the most this year but I think that was going to be a given but we will have to wait and see if Justice League lives up to potential. With my dislike of Spiderman, in which I will most likely see in cinema because of fiancé, and Thor, which I probably won’t unless fiancé again, I doubt that I will enjoy either movie as much as I did Wonder Woman as both times I came out feeling happy and with a smile on my face. Fantastic Beasts was the last movie that I felt that way about.

I could go through the plot but it is an origin story and if you know the basic history of Wonder Woman then you pretty much know it already. Diana grows up on Themyscira (Paradise Island) with her mother Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons and the Amazons themselves. She learns to fight becomes a great warrior and has never met a man until Steve Trevor crash lands. She leaves the island with him but she might never be able to return.

This how the first part of the movie goes though Hippolyta (Connie Nielsen) never wants Diana (Gal Gadot) to learn to fight but eventually she is taught by her Aunt Antiope (Robyn Wright). Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) does crash land but unlike most telling’s of her origin he is not the only man to land on the island as he is followed by the German army. The first battle scene on the beach is beautifully shot, though admittedly all the fight/battle sequences are.

Just like in BvS: Dawn of Justice Gal Gadot is luminous as Diana Prince/Wonder Woman and she brings a tough innocence to the character. She and Chris Pine have wonderful chemistry together. He was also wonderful and charming as Steve Trevor. Lucy Davis as Etta Candy was delightful and comical and so were Steve Trevor rag-tag team of Sameer (Said Taghmaoui), Charlie (Ewen Bremner) and Chief Napi (Eugene Brave Rock).

As for the antagonists Danny Huston does a good job with the red herring German General Erich Ludendorff as does Elena Anaya as Isabel Maru (Doctor Poison). I am however a little disappointed with Ares though I will admit that I didn’t see the misdirect when it came to him.

As mentioned before the direction and battle sequence are wonderful especially the No-Man’s Land sequence and Patty Jenkins deserves all the accolades she is getting and she should definitely do the sequel and get more directing gigs after this one.

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The Badger On: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 (Movie)

If you have read my list of favourite Marvel movies found in my Pop Goes The Badger Blog you would know that  Guardians of the Galaxy came in at number 2, after the Avengers, as the Marvel movie that I most enjoyed. Despite 3 more movies coming out since then, including this review, I will stand by that. Even though Captain America: Civil War is probably their best made movie on a enjoyment level I still prefer the Avengers and Guardians more. Actually I will say that Winter Solider is still probably my favourite Cap movie, on my enjoyable scale, as the last time I watched Civil War (and second viewing) I fell asleep. I might have to revise that list to include the three additional movies but might wait until after Spider-Man: Homecoming and Thor: Ragnarok are released.

I will try not to be too heavy with the spoilers considering that this movie has not been released in all regions.

First off, it is an enjoyable movie, actually my bf likes this one better than the first though he still thinks that there is not much of a storyline in either movie. I still, however, think the first one has a charm that this one kind of lacks. There is a little growth in the characters and the humour is much more present in my opinion and Baby Groot is adorable and should bring a smile to your face every time he is on screen.

While the original movie was an introduction and formation of the team, Vol 2 is a movie about family and fatherhood. At the end of the first movie Peter Quill/Star Lord (Chris Pratt) finds out that he is only half human with his father being something that even the Nova Corps were unaware of. In Vol 2 we meet his father a Celestial (a kind of god) named Ego (Kurt Russell). Peter is a little resentful of his father to begin with but eventually get swayed by the charm of Ego and actually finding his father. Gamora (Zoe Salanda) is suspicious of Ego and also resentful to an extant as she feels that Ego is taking Peter away from the family that is being formed within the Guardians.

It is not just Peter and his budding relationship with his father that is being explored. The relationship between the Gamora and her sister Nebula (Karen Gillan) and the treatment the endured by their adoptive father Thanos along with the relationship of Peter and his kidnapper Yondu (Michael Rooker), who we find out was hired by Ego to bring Peter to him after his mother died but didn’t. Yondu also builds a bit of a relationship with Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper) as they are very much alike in some ways.

Like in the first one the music is good though admittedly not as good or used as well as the first one, in my opinion. Stand out tracks being Fleetwood Mac’s The Chain and Cat Stevens Father and Son. The last one in  particular might bring tears to your eyes, as it did me. I think it just one of those songs that you just instinctively know the words too as I was mouthing the words to it as it was playing and my bf was singing aloud to it.

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The Badger On: Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them (Movie)

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Well duh, it was only logical that I was going to see this movie. It is:

  1. Set in the Harry Potter Universe
  2. Written by J.K Rowling herself
  3. The main character is a Hufflepuff and we badgers support each other.

A couple of things before I start to Squee. I did see this while it was in cinema but it was not our usual cinema and not a very good or comfortable one. The other thing is my anxiety was very high during this movie not only because of the movie itself but also because I had an assignment due and I have no idea if I am going to complete the last task because frankly it was making me feel uncomfortable.

I saw this with my bf naturally, my eldest niece also naturally and surprise, surprise some others. The others being my bf’s brother and sister-in-law, my second younges niece who is 9 years old and my sister. My sister, who introduced me to the Harry Potter world, is the only one who didn’t like the movie, she thought it was boring and spent most of the movie playing on her phone.

Just so you know our sorting my BF is a Ravenclaw and my sister and older niece are both Slytherins, the younger one is too young but I have my fingers crossed that she will be a Hufflepuff like me and nature and some early online results (not Pottermore) are pointing that way though admittedly it is a tie between the badger and the snake. No idea what they in-laws are.

Well back to the movie. I, of course, loved it. I have also bought the screenplay book which I have only just finished (a week in Melbourne with nothing to do and nowhere to go and no transport to get anywhere and no Wi-Fi can do that) and I have also re-watched the movie as I bought the digital copy when released and will also by a physical copy soon.

A little blurb I guess: Newt Scamander arrives in New York with a case of Magical Creatures some escape and Newt along with a No-Maj (muggle) named Jacob and two American Witches Tina and Queenie Goldstein assist in trying to capture them. There are also mysterious magical goings-on in New York that could expose the magical community to the No-Maj world.

Ms Rowling did a good job with the writing of the screenplay for a first attempt as the story told was enjoyable and I laughed, cried and clapped my way through the movie. At the screening that I saw it in it was given a round of applause at the end which I naturally participated in. The special effects to bring the magical creatures to life were wonderful and you could see the obvious care and love that Newt has to the creatures in his case. The highlights being the mischievous niffler, the beautiful Thunderbird Frank and the mating dance in Central Park with the Erumpent. Also Picket the Bowtruckle was cute.

Acting wise Eddie Redmayne (who is a Hufflepuff in RL) was wonderful as Newt Scamander as was Dan Fogler as Jacob Kowalski. Katherine Waterson and Alison Sudol as the sisters Tina and Queenie Goldstein were also great and I particular loved the relationship that developed between Jacob and Queenie. Also great were Ezra Miller as Credence Barebone, the ‘squib’ and Colin Farrell as Percival Graves the shady and menacing MACUSA (Magical Congress of the United States of America) Auror. The twist at the end was very interesting though I am not sure how I feel about the casting. I will not go into detail about it though I suspect that if you have seen the movie already you know what I am talking about.

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The Badger On: Logan (Movie)

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I know it has been a while. I have been to the movies a couple of times prior to this review. The first I did start to write something up but I wanted to see the movie again and didn’t get a chance to so I might wait for the Digital/DVD release of it, which should be soon. The second I actually fell asleep during due it being really hot, a heavy meal prior and popcorn during and I was tired to begin with. Unfortunately this did not impress my BF who was rather annoyed that I feel asleep.

 

So that leads to my review of Logan. Now we all know that I am more of a DC fan than a Marvel and though technically this is made by Fox and not Marvel/Disney Wolverine is a Marvel character and I do have a fondness for the character. Actually X-Man/Wolverine is probably the only Marvel creation that I do have a fondness for though Guardians of the Galaxy and Deadpool might creep in there.

 

I am going to admit right off the bat that I did cry by the end. This has probably been the best X-Men movie that has been made in a while and this isn’t really an X-Men movie it just has elements of it. Hugh Jackman in his final (?) outing as Wolverine/Logan’s age has caught up to him and the adamantium that has been bonded to his skeleton now poisoning him and his healing ability slowing down.  He is  wonderful in his curmudgeon best, though in his own way it is an act as he does truly care for both Caliban (Stephen Merchant) and Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and he did end up caring and even seeing Laura/X23 (Dafne Keen) as his daughter by the end of the film.

 

Dafne Keen was definitely the highlight of this movie with her not speaking until the last third of the film and only responding to action sequences with grunts and screams. The way she reacted to what was going on around her was wonderful. Professor Xavier’s and Wolverine’s last moments in this movie were beautiful and horrible at the same time as Wolverine’s in particular is what brought me to tears with Laura referring to him as ‘Daddy’ for the first time.

 

Wonderfully directed and co-written by James Mangold this is a road movie where you can feel the tension of the chase by the bad guys in the form of Transigen/Reavers  who are responsible for the creation of Laura from DNA taken from Logan and the other young mutants who are trying to cross the border into Canada where they will be protected.  Like Deadpool before it this is a MA15+ movie with its violence and language but the violence to an extent was very artistic.

 

If you are a fan of Wolverine please go and see this movie as it finally gives you the Wolverine that should have always been.

 

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