Vulcan Stev's Database

It's a BLOG Captain, but not as we know it.

Vulcan Stev Family Movie Review: Iron Man 2

Starring:
Robert Downey Jr. …  Tony Stark
Don Cheadle …  Lt. Col. James ‘Rhodey’ Rhodes / War Machine
Scarlett Johansson …  Natalie Rushman / Natasha Romanoff
Gwyneth Paltrow …  Pepper Potts
Sam Rockwell …  Justin Hammer
Mickey Rourke …  Ivan Vanko
Samuel L. Jackson …  Nick Fury
Clark Gregg …  Agent Coulson
John Slattery …  Howard Stark
Jon Favreau …  Happy Hogan
Paul Bettany …  Jarvis (voice)
Kate Mara …  U.S. Marshal
Leslie Bibb …  Christine Everhart
Garry Shandling …  Senator Stern

Plot synopsis from IMDb: With the world now aware of his dual life as the armored superhero Iron Man, billionaire inventor Tony Stark faces pressure from the government, the press, and the public to share his technology with the military. Unwilling to let go of his invention, Stark, along with Pepper Potts, and James “Rhodey” Rhodes at his side, must forge new alliances – and confront powerful enemies.

2010 – Paramount Pictures/Marvel Studios – PG-13 – 124 min

VS: 1.8 pointed ears
This is one of the exceptions to the Hollywood rule that sequels suck and are usually nowhere near as good as the original.  I think that Marvel keeping the rights to the Avengers franchise is probably one of the smarter moves to come out of Hollywood in quite some time.  Keeping Samuel Jackson as Nick Fury was another good idea as well.

Why not a full two ears? I think the whole drunken Iron Man scene was a tad bit overdone.  I’m not a hard-core Iron Man fan and I’ve only been following the Marvel mainstream Avengers since Spidey joined.  So I cannot comment whether the writers followed cannon or not.  I’ve never seen Tony Stark as a drunken idiot.  Yes I know Stark has a drinking problem but endangering the lives of guests in his home?

The shot at the end of the movie has got me salivating for next year’s “Thor”

Pvt Black Spartan: 1.9 pointed ears 
This movie picked up right were the last one left off.  I didn’t rely too much on the previous movie either.  Props to the writers and director for not putting too much “flashback” into the script.  Samuel L. Jackson has the character of Nick Fury locked.

PIT #2: 2 pointed ears
This movie was awesome.  War Machine rocked even though the role of Rhodey was recast.  I found no faults with this movie at all.

PIT #3: 2 pointed ears
Taking Daddy to see this on his birthday was a treat.  I like how the movie looks inside Tony’s head.  I mean I like how Tony has problems and then he fights to m things better.  I also liked the fact that there was no kissing in this movie (editor’s note: we did have to take a bathroom break so we may have missed that scene if there was one).

The drones rocked.

7.7 pointed ears out of 8.  This is a worthy successor to the first.  Marvel’s plan of a MEGA-franchise seems to be playing out very well.  IM2 has set a relatively high bar for next year’s Thor and Captain America.  My only worry at this point is that each succeeding director will attempt to “Top” Iron Man and leave the bar wa-a-y to high for 2012’s Avengers movie.

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May 24, 2010 Posted by | Marvel, Movie Reviews, Movies | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Vulcan Stev Family Movie Review: Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock Holmes

Warner Bros. – 128 mins – PG-13

Starring:
 Robert Downey Jr. …  Sherlock Holmes
 Jude Law …  Dr. John Watson
 Rachel McAdams …  Irene Adler
 Mark Strong …  Lord Blackwood
 Eddie Marsan …  Inspector Lestrade
 Robert Maillet …  Dredger
 Geraldine James …  Mrs. Hudson
 Kelly Reilly …  Mary Morstan
 William Houston …  Constable Clark
 Hans Matheson …  Lord Coward
 James Fox …  Sir Thomas
 William Hope …  Ambassador Standish
 Clive Russell …  Captain Tanner
 Oran Gurel …  Reordan
 David Garrick …  McMurdo

Synopsis from IMDb:  After finally catching serial killer and occult “sorcerer” Lord Blackwood, legendary sleuth Sherlock Holmes and his assistant Dr. Watson can close yet another successful case. But when Blackwood mysteriously returns from the grave and resumes his killing spree, Holmes must take up the hunt once again. Contending with his partner’s new fiancée and the dimwitted head of Scotland Yard, the dauntless detective must unravel the clues that will lead him into a twisted web of murder, deceit, and black magic – and the deadly embrace of temptress Irene Adler.

VS: 1.9 pointed ears
I am not a Sherlock Holmes fan.  I ‘ve read maybe one of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s novels.  I am familiar enough with the character that I know the basics.  From what I remember of the Holmes canon, this movie is a faithful interpretation of the character right down to Holmes’ use of cocaine (inferred in a scene but not mentioned on screen and my reason for a point 1 reduction).  That said I was sufficiently intrigued by the trailers to put this movie on my “See it if it comes to Grundy” list (Grundy being our local dollar theater).  I was not disappointed.  I enjoyed this film from start to finish.  The violence is not gratuitous and is used to depict Holmes’ analytical mind in more than one scene.  19th century London looked appropriately gritty and smog infested.  Given the state of special effects that shouldn’t surprise me but it did look nice.  I was also pleasantly surprised to find that Mrs VS enjoyed the movie (but I’ll let her tell why in her section).

Robert Downey Jr. played Holmes to the nines.  Never did I see a hint of Tony Stark, too often when I go to see a film I can be distracted by seeing too much of an actor’s previous performance.  Downey gave life to a character who could well be an ancestor of Tony Stark without calling on the previous character. 

I also failed to see the supposed “gay subtext” in this movie.  I suspect that blog rumors and pronouncements of the former  are from people who are over analyzing everything.   This movie goes in the DVD collection when it is released.

Mrs. VS: 1.5 pointed ears
This was a fairly decent movie.  The scenery was appropriate to the era being depicted.  It is not a good-looking movie, but then 19th century London was not a beautiful place.  I happen to like murder mysteries (ed note I didn’t know that) and this movie was rousing good mystery.  The man bursting into flames was a little gratuitous but understandable given the aspirations of the villain.

Pvt. B.
rating coming

PIT #2: 2 pointed ears
This movie is the best movie of 2010 (OK it’s only February but it’s STILL a good movie).  This movie took everything that I knew about Sherlock Holmes and put it up on the screen.   You can be a complete Sherlock noob and still enjoy this movie.

PIT #3: 2 pointed ears
This movie rocked.  I didn’t see a single kissing scene.  Although there were no car chases, I understand that is because the automobile had not been invented in Holmes’ time (though we did get to see a large ship sink).

Overall 7.4 out of 8 ears

Families be warned the PG-13 rating is earned for depictions of (legal) drug use, depictions of cultic rituals and minor language.

Definitely a must-see if you get the chance.

February 17, 2010 Posted by | Movie Reviews, Movies | , , , , , , | 5 Comments