John Carter

John Carter is not, as some would have it, an out-and-out awful film. There is one particular action scene that is both awe-inspiring and emotionally affecting, and it serves as a glimpse of what could have been. As a piece of epic sci-fi, it’s a good way to spend two hours.
Rating: 3 starsHoopla Factor: 3 stars Continue reading John Carter

Hugo

The critical acclaim surrounding the film leaves me wondering if it is purely the thematic content of the film that had such an impact. Hugo is a film that looks and sounds great, and it’s clear that a lot of love went into making it, but the humdrum storytelling leaves a lot to be desired.
Rating: 3.0 starsHoopla Factor: 2.0 stars Continue reading Hugo

Sucker Punch

There’ve been pointed accusations suggesting that this is nothing more than titillating misogyny, whilst Snyder’s faint replies have been along the lines that the film is actually challenging or parodying male-created sexual fantasy stereotypes. To be honest, neither ring true for me.
Rating: 2.5 starsHoopla Factor: 3.5 stars Continue reading Sucker Punch

Sherlock Holmes

This is a really pretty film and it matches perfectly with Ritchie’s cinematic style. Hans Zimmer’s score is fantastic also – probably the best orchestral score of the year – and, of course, the performances are great. Everyone knew that Downey Jr. would make a great Holmes, and he does.
Rating: 3.5 starsHoopla Factor: 3.5 stars


Mired in the mess of editing cliches that betray this most modern version of the venerable franchise as 'a Guy Ritchie film', Sherlock Holmes features a confused and incomplete storyline and seems more like a preface to its inevitable sequels than a fully realised feature film in its own right.
Rating: 2.5 starsHoopla Factor: 2.5 stars

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9

Whilst I was enthralled by their tale (and wowed by the action sequences), the experience was ultimately disappointing, particularly if one was hoping for a plot to match the intricate and gorgeous visuals. If the story telling matched the production values, then this would be a fantastic feature indeed.
Rating: 3.0 starsHoopla Factor: 4.0 stars Continue reading 9

Hellboy II: The Golden Army

Despite the glorious world on show, it all comes a bit too easily, so the film doesn’t feel as epic as it should. It deals with the nature of the greater good in its own simple way, and is quite effective in doing so, even if it pales in comparison to the complexity of other comic book movies.
Rating: 3.5 starsHoopla Factor: 4.0 stars Continue reading Hellboy II: The Golden Army

The Golden Compass

In its haste to get to the big action scenes and battle sequences, it forgets that the audience needs to care about those fighting (and dying). The exposition in the opening half overwhelms the character information to the point that each is given rare moments to define themselves.
Rating: 2.5 starsHoopla Factor: 2.0 stars


Every time the characters refer to the alethiometer, they quickly follow it up with 'golden compass' (though tellingly off-camera), and this goes to show just how 'careful' people are when 180 million dollars are on the line.
Rating: 2.5 starsHoopla Factor: 3.0 stars

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