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The Meg 2: The Trench (2023)

Meg 2: The Trench (2023)

A research team encounters multiple threats while exploring the depths of the ocean, including a malevolent mining operation.

They certainly upped the stakes with this one! Though it's still... predictable. And there's comedy to the point the desperation never truly comes through - at least at the end. During their walk to the underwater station I was thinking they might capture it better this time around. It's one of the things the previous movie seemed to be lacking too. So unlike Jaws.

Maybe there's just too much going on at the same time for you to be able to zone in and really appreciate - or feel thrilled by - the individual moments. Though you can't say the action scenes don't look good! Statham's got real Jetski skills too, and the suits look awesome. The level of tech in the beginning of the film's impressive, and the special effects are - even if you can't really call them 'realistic' - impressive too.

It almost feels like an action game sometimes. Like Far Cry, maybe...

Seeing Jason Statham and Jing Wu together's cool too. They're both action icons in their own right.

Sergio Peris-Mencheta makes a bad-ass nemesis too, and Skyler Samuels and Sienna Guillory seem suitably cold and calculating initially... until they just die.

I would've liked to know what came after - and would've liked at least one of them to end up behind bars - or at the hands of her enemies.

And how did they resolve the incident when it was all over? How many lives were lost at the beach resort?

Some news stories, or some law enforcement - something to show that it wasn't just an isolated incident - would've been nice to round things off.

It looks cool (I mean it really looks cool - the visual coolness is a big upside) but feels superficial otherwise - like with that aforementioned inconclusive and isolated ending I reckon, just like the last one did.

Still enjoyed it though.

And Jason does have one kick-ass line.

See you later, chum.

 rated 3.5/5: not bad at all

Violent City (1970)

Violent City (1970)

It's a Charles Bronson film! An old classic with an obvious name. Gritty and slow as they only were in the way back then days.

It starts on a boat, with a totally jacked Bronson and a topless jackal of a broad.

Unexploited exotics, lush forests and blue seas... imagine being alive in the seventies. We've destroyed so much since. We've fucked up our world in it's entirety - all over - in all possible ways, and it seems we're not stopping either.

Everything seemed better back then.

They had a car chase to rival Bullit too.

The river boat graveyard was an unexpected highlight too. Wonder where that was. Wonder if it still exists.

The movie's about jealousy, a woman, the way of the world, and violence...

And it was better than expected. It's the seventies but they have some gadgetry, too. Like the see-through window to the swimming pool. All the details - simple though they may be by modern standards - I like them still. Prefer them to the ones of today, even. Even this vile, and violent world, seems favorable compared to the current one.

At least then things were simpler - even if they were just as hard. Bronson's the silent but strong type, yet quite the bard.

Forgotten gem this movie. Violent City. It riles; it's gritty.

Great watch.

 rated 4/5: fo shizzle

Gangnam Zombie (2023)

Gangnam Zombie (2023)

Gangnam is a CITY! I had no idea, I thought it was a made-up dance, it all makes sense now...

The intro here is so good, I'm always impressed with how creative and meticulous they are with their craft. Koreans.

Though after that... it gets unfortunately subpar, with both limited cast, and setting, and action sequence hits that... don't really hit at all.

You clearly see them just swing through air, and the bad guys drop. And yet the one bad guy keeps coming. And what about the one that crawls towards the main characters upside down on the ground?!

Come on y'all... that stunt's overplayed. Very unnecessary. Virtually non-existent threat level. They're a threat when they run. Maybe that crawl move works better (for the audience that is) in close quarters...

The movie does have a couple twists though, and I enjoy the characters. The zombies get old after a while but initially they were hella authentic too.

I appreciate the cast, the end, and the attention to detail.

Wish the rest of the movie was a bit less restricted.

 rated 3.5/5: not bad at all

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Animal (1977)

Animal (1977)

Now this is class. :) Romance and action, featuring a male and female stunt couple, sort of. Jean-Paul Belmondo and Raquel Welch, was it?! He wants to get married, but she's not quite happy with it, and meanwhile they're shooting movies. Doing stunts. Doing crazy stuff. There's a tiger. There's a helicopter thing. It's fun!

It's strange how the classy locales and protagonist without fit so well together, but he's got charisma, and Rachel (as well as everyone else) is beautiful, and when it's over what a trip it's been.

Had a blast with this. It's a simple form of entertainment, at no one's expense but to those who lose out in love to the main man. But don't feel sorry for them. You don't, do you?

Gotta love the mood! It feels like: life. Living to the fullest. An animal but not the cruelest. Even if they're human.

 rated 4/5: fo shizzle

Everything Everywhere All At Once (2022)

Everything Everywhere All At Once (2022)

A middle-aged Chinese immigrant is swept up into an insane adventure in which she alone can save existence by exploring other universes and connecting with the lives she could have led.

I definitely was not expecting the bloody dildos! XD Or the butt plug fight. That was amazing... the action sequences may not be the most realistic always, but intense, and creative in a good way. For the most part.

I love the very concept. How the lower the probability of something is the easier it'll be to skip into an alternative realm... though the implications of this may not be what you expect. It's refreshingly different from all the multiverse-travel or parallel-timeline movies I've seen thus far.

It also combines both the sci-fi and the horror elements you'd typically find with such movies with a refreshing amount of... comedy!

And I love how elements go full circle. Like the googly eyes.

It's wholesome how though you keeping coming back to the same worlds, and the same scenarios - as boring or mundane as say a tax revision or a girlfriend introduction may be - they play a bigger role than you initially thought they would.

And everything matters.

Some things really are random but a lot of those seemingly random things serve a purpose after all, and they move beyond the boundaries you'd typically expect or find reasonable... like those stones. With googly eyes.

In the end it's a parallel to life as much as it is an out-of-this-world sci-fi movie, and to how we ought progress as a species; how to make sense of it all. How to set things in place. How to make those memory lapses and social dilemmas we might relate to the crumbling foundations of a multiverse actually make sense; have a positive influence on our outlook and life...

It's not so much about escaping the Matrix after all, but more so of making the best of it.

It's like an adult take on sci-fi. Despite the fantasy: it's real.

Michelle Yeoh was great - as always - she plays unconventional roles with ease it seems. As was Ke Huy Quan - though I feel like his role here may be overpraised - it's good but not quite as multifaceted as Yeoh's was. I think he won some awards too.

Stephanie Hsu as great as well, Jamie Lee Curtis was amazing - also with a very multi-faceted role, and James Hong - who really does look old here, and Brian Le - maybe the most recognizable martial arts man in the mix - also with a very unexpected fight scene!

It really goes places you don't expect it too, and I love that about it, but towards the end I'm also getting a little tired of the constantly flickering faces - to denote shifts in timeline/dimension, and the rotating lights that play on their faces. It's a cool effect once or twice, or at more notable moments, but they just keep repeating it, and there's clearly a limited amount of faces and timelines they alternate during this procedure too...

For the most part this movie is amazing, but I get a little tired of that.

Maybe it's by intention but... it breaks the spell a bit for me.

Less recycling there and this would've been a clear 5/5 in my book. It's innovative beyond bounds, whilst still managing to remain grounded and relatable, and meaningful, and fun, and intense, and Michelle's amazing...

I'll definitely remember this one, slightly monotone or no.

Amazing movie.

 rated 4.5/5: almost awesome

The Gangster, The Cop, The Devil (2019)

The Gangster, The Cop, The Devil (2019)

Watched Kill Boksoon just recently, and what can I say! Once you get back into Korean movies you can't get enough of them. They're just so... full of attitude! And atmosphere. And justice. It's almost naïve in a way, but that's what you want to see in the world too no? Gangsters and cops alike uniting to take down the devil. That which just has zero regard for human life.

I've seen Ma Dong-seok in a few other movies at this point, and he always impresses. No less here. Maybe more here. He's the Korean Sylvester Stallone you could say. A guy you'd assume is just as tough in real life as he is on screen. He carries a weight about him. When we walks. When he speaks. With the very fabric of his being.

This is a dark thriller at times, but more so a cops and robbers game similar to say Kill Zone or SPL. But without the martial arts.

There are fights but they're street fights. Just straight up vicious brawls without any finesse what-so-ever. And that's why they're awesome!

The sense of authority that Ma has here reminds me of the scene in Kill Zone where Samo throws the bottle on the ground, and a hundred henchmen throw theirs. It's impactful. It's power. It's respect. It's God tier crime boss, as you rarely see in the movies.

Maybe since they'd rather not portray the criminal in such a light that you suddenly just want to join a gang. Become part of that brotherhood. Share both in the blood and in the spoils of war.

It's straight up awesome, this one. Maybe it's really worth a five too.
The atmosphere's top-notch always.

I love the premise too.

 rated 4.5/5: almost awesome

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