Friday, May 4, 2012

REVIEW: The Avengers

Robert Downey Jr. - Tony Stark / Iron Man
Chris Evans - Steve Rogers / Captain America
Mark Ruffalo - Bruce Banner / Hulk
Chris Hemsworth - Thor
Scarlett Johansson - Natasha Romanoff / Black Widow
Jeremy Renner - Clint Barton / Hawkeye
Tom Hiddleston - Loki
Clark Greg - Agent Phil Coulson
Samuel L. Jackson - Nick Fury

The Avengers are here after a 4 year build up with 5 films featuring the members of the team. What Marvel has done is change the way all comic films will be made. This film is a game changer. You know how "The Expendables" was a joy-gasm to watch because all of your favorite 80's action stars teamed up for a heavy hitter movie? Watching The Avengers gave me that same joy-gasm. Perhaps even more because I knew exactly what I was going to see as far as a plot and characters.

Loki, now banished from Asgard (see Thor for more details) seeks revenge on Thor and the planet he has grown fond of, Earth. He teams up with the Chitauri and with the power of the Tesseract/Cosmic Cube, Loki seems unstoppable. Faced with a challenge the Earth has never seen before, Nick Fury reactivates The Avengers Initiative. However, pulling Earths mightiest heroes together and have them work together is more challenging than stopping Loki from enslaving humanity.

Now that we have that taken care of, let me list why I loved this movie.

First, every actor played their parts perfectly. I knew this was gonna be a given, but I was still simply blown away with how believable their performances were. Robert Downey Jr. was born to play Tony Stark. I can't think of any other actor past or present that would play this character better than Robert Downey Jr.

Many people that were worried about Mark Ruffalos performance and comparing it to Edward Nortons performance in The Incredible Hulk need not worry. Mr. Ruffalo did a fantastic job portraying Bruce Banner.

I knew going into this with the 4 year hype it was going to be packed full of action. I was correct. Although with Hawkeye and Black Widdow not being as big of characters and fan favorites as Iron Man or Captain America, the action was evenly spread throughout every Avengers member and each member brought something special to the climactic fight. That was my only concern with this movie and I'm glad I was very wrong. Avengers has without a doubt the most action out of all of the Marvel movies, so for those that don't like a lot of stuff blowing up, you might not like this movie. Then again, it's the freaking Avengers.

I'm trying not to spoil anything, but Hulk has without a doubt the most badass moments in this film. Tony Stark as expected had most of the funny lines. Loki, however, stole the show for me, and Tom Hiddleston is on his way to being a HUGE name in Hollywood (if he isn't already).

To conclude on a more personal note, I can't think of a more enjoyable movie going experience than watching this film. I think the last film that made me this happy watching it was the 2009 Star Trek film. Besides the joy-gasm of seeing every actor in their character forms fighting together, the hilarious moments between each character and pretty awesome plot, this film more than anything brought me back to when I was 10 years old. Watching this movie made me feel like a 10 year old kid seeing my favorite superheroes coming to life. You can't get any better than that.

SUMMARY: The Avengers redefines what a comic film should be. This has topped The Dark Knight in great fashion as the ultimate comic film. This film will not only satisfy your desire for an action packed summer blockbuster, but will make you feel like you're a child watching your favorite heroes coming to life. Magical films like this are very rare. DC needs to really step their game up. Bravo, Marvel & Joss Whedon. Bravo.

RATING: 10/10

Written By: Hammy
Twitter: @BrainstuHammy

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

REVIEW: Justice League - Doom

Kevin Conroy- Batman
Tim Daly- Superman
Susan Eisenberg- Wonder Woman
Nathan Fillion- Green Lantern
Carl Lumbly- Martian Manhunter
Michael Rosenbaum- Flash
Bumper Robinson- Cyborg

What? It's been 4 months already? I guess that means it is time for the latest DC Animated Universe movie to come out on dvd. This time it is another Justice League movie. This one is somewhat based on the Justice League: Tower of Babel story.

The story mostly focuses on Batman and the fact that he is so paranoid that he has files on his computers of how to "neutralize" the other members of the Justice League. Of course if it stopped there we wouldn't have a movie now would we? After the Justice League battles the Royal Flush Gang we find out that Flash villain Mirror Master stows away in the bat mobile and is able to steal said files on the computer for Vandal Savage who hired him. With this info Savage hires villains for each hero to form the Legion of Doom(members include Metallo, Bane, Cheetah, Star Sapphire, Mirror Master, and others) each of whom are able to neutralize the Justice League just as the files stated.

I won't spoil the rest but I will say the middle act and last act of this movie are fantastically done by the late Dwayne McDuffie. The changes made from the source material make sense(replacing stuff that wouldn't work on screen for stuff that works better on screen) and each hero is well represented here. Especially Batman, who is the main focus, and Green Lantern.

One thing about the art for this one is they kinda made the designs a combination of western animation style with aspects of japanese art style. This means the hulking characters are huge compared to the smaller characters. Bane was huge once he got the venom pumping through his veins. The designs might take time to get used to for some but they work here.

The strength of the movie is in the voice cast. This is probably the best all around voice cast that has been assembled for a DCAU movie. It's always a pleasure to hear Kevin Conroy voice Batman. Also you get Tim Daly reprising his role as Superman from Superman: TAS. To round out the rest of the Justice League you have Susan Eisenberg, Michael Rosenbaum, and Carl Lumbly reprising their roles of Wonder Woman, The Flash(albeit Barry Allen instead of Wally West), and Martian Manhunter from Justice League and JLU repsectively. Add Smallville's Phil Morris as Vandal Savage, Olivia d'Abo as Star Sapphire, and Bumper Robinson as Cyborg and the cast is very well rounded. Also Reno 911 fans will like the choice for Bane as the guy voicing him is Carlos Alazraqui who played Garcia on Reno 911.

Overall this is one of the better DCAU movies to come out. I'd rank it above Green Lantern: First Flight, but not above Batman: Year One or Justice League New Frontier. Still top 4 isn't bad at all and is a great last script for Dwayne McDuffie. If you are a fan of the characters or the Justice League you will surely enjoy this. As will Kevin Conroy as Batman fans.

I give this 4.5 Paranoid Batmen out of 5.

Written By: Mike Falcone
Twitter: @BrainstuFalcone

REVIEW: Assassins Creed - Revelations

Desmonds story continues while the stories of 2 Assassins end

First off, let me just say I was simply blown away with the first demo I played. I only managed to play a demo for about 10 minutes, but I knew I would love this game. Then I saw this trailer...

I love the Assassins Creed series. It's one of my favorite series of games I've ever played. The idea that I'm a stealth ninja-like killer with many weapons at my disposal killing random guards is not only fun and exciting, but I found these games to be stress reducing as well.

Now, onto the game itself. As you can tell from the trailer, Ezio is much older than he previously was in "Brotherhood". 90% of the game you are in Istanbul, still fighting the templars, but also finding out the truth about the Assassins, the Apple, those who came before and Desmond.

Total badass...

I'm not going to reveal anything about the story, but it left me begging for more. Not in a bad way by any means. I will say this though, it sets up for the finally in Assassins Creed 3. You also find out what happened with Altair after the events of the first Assassins Creed.

The only disappointment I have is I wish you had a little more playing time as Altair instead of occasional flashbacks. That's just me nitpicking though.

Ubisoft once again hits it out of the park with a visually stunning epic

What is also an improvement is the multi-player function. More options are at your disposal as you stealth your way around a map trying to kill your opponents.

OVERALL: Assassins Creed: Revelations is another solid entry in this amazing series. I have never had this much fun playing a video game as I have been playing these games. I can't wait for the finally this Fall!

RATING: 9.5 random guard killing sprees out of 10

Written By: Hammy
Twitter: @BrainstuHammy