Terrificon 2017 Review and Haul

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Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! If you have followed this blog recently, you may be aware of me going to a convention called Terrificon, it is a convention dedicated to comics, superheroes, sci-fi, horror, fantasy, and to the world’s misfortune, fidget spinners. The convention went from Friday, which was August 18, to Sunday, which was August 20. I was there Friday and Saturday, I had quite a bit of fun and I can’t really say I have many complaints about it.

As far as guests go, it’s your usual situation there, you’ve got your celebrities, your artists, and your vendors. I didn’t really see too many artists, however I recall my sister interacting with a number of them. When it comes to celebrities, the convention had people such as Burt Ward (TV Batman, Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders), Lee Merriweather (TV Batman, Barnaby Jones), Sean Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy, Gilmore Girls), Chris Sullivan (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, This is Us), Shannon Purser (Riverdale, Stranger Things), Finn Jones (The Defenders, Game of Thrones), Jessica Henwick (The Defenders, Star Wars: The Force Awakens), and Benedict Samuel (Gotham, The Walk). A number of the vendors were local, the ones I bought items from were NY Collectibles from Bronx, NY, The Dragon’s Lair from Wallingford, CT, Festival Flea Market Mall from Pompano Beach, FL, Greg White Comics from Kissimmee, FL (believe that’s the correct info), and Fuzzy Fish Inc from an unknown location (There’s one in Tybee Island, GA but I highly doubt that’s even close to the correct info, who knows I might even have the wrong name.).

Throughout I met three celebrity guests, Chris Sullivan, Shannon Purser, and Violet Beane. For Chris Sullivan, I actually met him alone, we shook hands, and I took a photo with him. The photo cost $30, which I ALMOST forgot to pay because after taking the picture, I got so close to just walking away! I would have likely ended up feeling guilty if I did. I had a good laugh with Chris and a guy near him about it. Also, before we took the photo, I talked to him about “This Is Us,” a show on NBC which he plays the character of Tim. I don’t watch the show, but my grandfather does, we actually talked a bit before I went down to the con, and my grandfather told me to tell him he was angry to never find out something that some viewers may be mad about me saying because it sounds like it is in spoiler territory.

The next celebrity guest I’ll bring up is Violett Beane. My sister watches CW’s “The Flash,” I don’t commit to many TV shows, so I don’t watch it at the moment, heard good things though. She’s on there and she plays the character of Jesse Wells. My sister got an autograph from her and she was asked if she was excited for the new season. She responded saying she was, and I, being the party pooper I was, had to admit I don’t watch the show. I didn’t say I didn’t LIKE it, I said I didn’t WATCH it. I asked Violett if I should start watching, she said yes like I was stupid. I didn’t hate her for the way she said it, she may have been dumbfounded with me, but it was understandable. Plus it was almost like she said it with a hint of swag. Hate that word! For the record, I would watch it, but I’m in the middle of “Star Trek: TOS,” “Firefly,” and I need to also catch up on “The Goldbergs” and “Kevin Can Wait.” I’ll remind you, I review MOVIES, which takes away from TV.

And finally for the celebrities, we’re gonna dive into Shannon Purser, hehe, that kind of sounds like a sexual innuendo. You may know Shannon as Barb from “Stranger Things,” another show I heard good things about and don’t watch. This time I have a better defense, which is the fact that I don’t use Netflix. I went with my sister to Purser’s table, she got some custom art signed, and Purser said a few kind words about my sister’s “Doctor Who” t-shirt.

For the convention itself, this took place in the Mohegan Sun Convention Center in Uncasville, CT. The center itself is nice, and it looks fancier than other convention centers I’ve seen. This was especially noticeable with the floor and ceiling. The venue is a decent size, and there weren’t many crowds pushing each other. While the whole center isn’t exactly big, it’s definitely good enough for a convention like this. Everything seemed to be organized and clean, so I can’t give many complaints there. I didn’t go to the second floor, but there were panels and professional photo ops being done there. The first floor had the ballroom and the pre-function lobby, where a few comic artists and all the celebrity guests were. There were barely lines for anything whatsoever, and the only people that had crowd control barriers leading up to them were Burt Ward, Lee Merriweather, and Dean Cain.

Now, let’s dive into some of stuff I got at the con. First off, I got a couple license plates. They happen to be the original “Ghostbusters” Ecto-1 license plate and a license plate that said “Assman,” which you would know about if you saw “Seinfeld.”

These two license plates came from the shop which I assumed was “Fuzzy Fish Inc,” I currently don’t have any pictures or promotions to prove what I just said. I’m just going from memory and what the program map tells me based on where I remember walking around in the convention center. I mentioned the Ecto-1 license plate from the original “Ghostbusters,” but they also have the Ecto-1 license specifically from “Ghostbusters II” and the one from “Ghostbusters” 2016, or as I like to call it, “Ghostf*ckers” 2016, because the people behind this film f*cked it up so much and may have f*cked up what was so good about the 1984 “Ghostbusters.” OK, that actually sounds like a terrible nickname because that almost sounds like a porno, let’s go with “Ghostsuckers” 2016, because the movie sucks so much that it shouldn’t have been made or even thought of to begin with. Oh wait a darn minute! Sucking is what some people do during sex to a penis! Gah! Forget what I said about Shannon Purser, THOSE, are sexual innuendos! The store also has “Outatime” license plates, which you may recognize from “Back to the Future” as a license plate for the DeLorean. I actually own one of those, it’s in my room, and I’m gonna put these two plates next to it.

I got one video game at the con, it’s “Kingdom Hearts II.” I own the first game, so I figured why not get the sequel. The game cost ten bucks which I wouldn’t consider a bad deal considering how revered this game is by the gaming community. I also saw the first game for twenty bucks, but I already own it, so I saved myself some money there. This came from NY Collectibles in Bronx, NY. I actually talked to a guy who was checking out the game for me, he pointed out how scratched the game disc was, and believe me, it was scratched like hell. The scratches made me somewhat skeptical of whether or not I should actually buy this game, but then he assured me that the disc was playable. I believed him. I haven’t tried it out, but we’ll see what happens in the future. After he gave me his assurance, I said, “Well, you aren’t GameStop.” Granted, I like GameStop and I do shop there occasionally, but I hear gamers sometimes give a lot of crap about them. The guy went on saying he went to a GameStop once and he saw a disc that was so scratched it was unplayable. I said I POSSIBLY could relate, and now that I think about it, I can relate. Because in 2012, I got “The Bigs” for the Xbox 360, it’s a baseball video game and it’s kind of fun. I now own the PS2 version, which I have played occasionally. The disc was so scratched that I returned it the next day and ended up not getting another copy of the game, but instead getting a copy of “The Bigs 2.” Interestingly enough, the disc now has a circular scratch, which is likely to be my fault from once tilting the Xbox 360. I mean, I get why gamers don’t like GameStop, they only carry newer console titles, even though that’s what you find in places like Walmart, Target, or Best Buy, they are extremely corporate, meaning that you can find them everywhere, so it’s basically the McDonald’s of video game stores, and they will literally pay you nothing for selling your games. Speaking of games…

At the con, I purchased my favorite card game of all time, “Cards Against Humanity.” This was purchased at The Dragon’s Lair from Wallingford, CT for a price over $40. For your information, you can get this game for a cheaper price in other stores. Target sells it for $25 for example. For those of you who don’t know what “Cards Against Humanity” is, take “Apples to Apples,” forbid the children from joining in on the fun, and top it off with a vibe you’d find in “Sausage Party.” This game is not for kids, I play it a lot online with friends, and I laugh my ass off every single time. Although another difference between this and “Apples to Apples” is instead of associating the player’s cards with adjectives, these are fill in the blank associations. If you haven’t played the game I highly recommend it. It’s fun with friends, it might be awkward with family though, although my mom actually wanted to play this with me and I’m more than happy to let her play with me if the opportunity ever comes up. I mean, as far as nontraditional mother-son events go, this is one I’d rather do than watch “Fifty Shades of Grey,” not because of the sex and kinky scenes, but because how poorly received it was. I wouldn’t even want to watch “Fifty Shades Darker” either because I heard that’s as much of a s*itshow as “Fifty Shades of Grey.” And no! I’m not reviewing it! I already reviewed “The Emoji Movie” for you all, consider that a favor! We’ll see what happens in the future.

I also picked up four posters. Where did I pick them up? To my knowledge, I believe the place was Greg White Comics. This place had a ton of small posters, a lot of which I remember were from “Star Wars,” “Spaceballs,” and “Terminator.” Speaking of “Star Wars” and “Spaceballs,” those were two of the posters I picked up. As far as other posters I got, I got one for “Blues Brothers” and “Family Guy,” specifically, one that was a parody of the original “Star Wars” movie. You know how during season 6 the first episode was an hour long parody of the original “Star Wars?” Well this poster is associated with that. By the way, if you haven’t seen that episode, please watch it, even if you aren’t a “Star Wars” fan you’ll laugh. The “Blues Brothers” poster, from what I can tell, is foreign, which I actually didn’t notice until looking at it as I’m writing this. I saw this poster on IMDb, but something weird I noticed about it is that it said the movie was rated PG, and the poster I purchased said the movie was rated PG-13. By the way, I Googled what the rating was, and it was PG. Last but not least is for “Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi,” or in this case, “Revenge of the Jedi.” If you are a hardcore “Star Wars” fan, a collector, or possibly alive during the eighties, you may be aware that before “Return of the Jedi” was released to the public, it was at one point going to be called “Revenge of the Jedi.” The store I got these from had a good deal where you could get four posters for twenty bucks, so why would I NOT get these four posters?!

I also picked up a couple t-shirts, t-shirts which in fact I can’t wait to wear. These were sold by comedian and actress from the Nickelodeon show “Every Witch Way,” Lisa Corrao. Seeing her in person, I had no idea who she was, then I Googled her to find out she was forty-two. I couldn’t even tell she was forty-two, she actually looked like she was in her twenties. It’s kind of like Julia-Louis Dreyfus, the older she gets, the younger she looks, at least to me when looking at her in real life. I purchased two shirts which were twenty bucks each, one which said “Jar Jar Stinks” and another which said “You’re not Groot.” The first shirt, if you can’t tell, is making fun of the obnoxiously horrible “Star Wars” character known as Jar Jar Binks, which may be the worst thing about the prequel trilogy, possibly rivaled by midichlorians, Anakin and Padme’s forced romance, the fact that Samuel L. Jackson never got to scream like crazy, Hayden Christensen’s performance, or Jake Lloyd’s performance. I always thought of the phrase “Jar Jar Stinks” as a nickname in my daily life and I’m glad to a see a shirt that says the same, although at the same time, I wanted to be the one to make it. You’d know what the second would mean if you know what “Guardians of the Galaxy” is, or at the very least, if you know who Groot from “Guardians of the Galaxy” is. You may know the only thing he says is “I am Groot,” and when he says it, it’s in that order. So instead of saying, “I am Groot,” the shirt says “You’re not Groot.”

Corrao also gave me a free autograph, which was also the only autograph I got at the con. I pay for a good number of autographs when I go to cons, so the fact that this was free was awesome. If the autograph was given only because I bought shirts, it’s still worth it in my book.

This con, if you didn’t know was also paying tribute to Adam West, who you may know from TV’s “Batman” as Batman, and from “Family Guy” as Mayor West. There was a lot to see when it came to “Batman.” There was a Batmobile, a Batcopter, the rope you’d see for batclimbing, a Batsignal, a Bat Kiddie Ride, a Batboat, and a Batcycle. Around the area where all of these battacular objects were, the sixtes “Batman” theme was playing in the background. There was also a screening of the 1966 “Batman” movie. I didn’t attend it, I personally I’m fine with not attending it, although I could imagine attending it would have been fun. Not to mention you have Lee Merriweather, who played Catwoman along with Burt Ward, who played Robin. The two of them were also at the screening and they even did a Q&A.

That pretty much completes my review and purchase analysis of Terrrificon 2017, I wouldn’t mind coming back next year when they do this again on August 17-19. One difference between this year and next year is that this is gonna be in a bigger space which is also in Mohegan Sun. Next year, instead of being in the Mohegan Sun Convention Center, this is going to be in the Mohegan Sun Exposition Center, which is cuurrently being built and is set to open in summer 2018. The center will have three times the space of the Mohegan Sun Convention Center, allowing more people to fit in. So I want to know, did you go to Terrificon, how was it? What did you do there? Did you buy anything? Leave a comment below, and I assure you, I do read them. Also, pretty soon I’m hoping to review “The Glass Castle,” but only time will tell when I actually get around to it. Stay tuned for more reviews, and if you guys want me to check out any cons, let me know about that down below! Also, cons, weird request, if you want me at your con either to review it, or less likely, as a guest, notify me! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

Ghost in the Shell (2017): Pretty but Uninteresting

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“Ghost in the Shell” is directed by Rupert Sanders who also directed 2012’s “Snow White and the Huntsman” and it stars Scarlett Johanson as a character who has a human mind, but she also has an artificial body. Throughout, this character we are introduced to, who goes by the name of Major, is tasked with stopping the world’s most dangerous criminals while at the same time, she’s trying to confirm the mystery of her true identity.

For the record, this movie is not original. This is based on a manga of the same name which began back in 1989, which later had multiple anime flicks, video games, and TV shows. The first “Ghost in the Shell” movie came out in 1995 and now it is considered to be one of the greatest anime films of all time. People praise it for how it is presented visually and having watched the movie, I can totally see why. If you ask me, I don’t watch much anime, so I can’t judge whether or not this belongs with the greats. I have watched this movie in the past and enjoyed it, but I’m just getting this out. That’s not all I’ll say about this, and this will be important later in the review.

Let’s talk about the main character of Major Motoko Kusanagi. As far as character traits go, she was very similar to the character I witnessed in the 1995 movie, which is a good thing and a bad thing. I do respect this movie for relying heavily on its source material and utilizing it throughout the runtime. She has a similar personality and she looks similar (for the most part) to the character in the 1995 version.

Now, let’s get into two topics meshed together. Asia and… CONTROVERSY! What does that mean? We’re gonna be talking about North Korea. Haha, just kidding, we’re gonna be talking about Japan. What about Japan? The atomic bomb droppings at the end of World War II. Haha, just kidding again, although we are bringing Japan into this. When the “Ghost in the Shell” franchise began, it all started in Japan, so naturally, just about everything that was being made which happened to be related to the franchise is considered a Japanese product. This movie however was made as a Hollywood product from Paramount and DreamWorks. The movie also has Scarlett Johanson playing the main character, which a lot of audiences were mad about because it’s an example of whitewashing, or what is referred to as taking a character of a certain race that isn’t white and having a white person fill in the shoes of the role. This has been done in “Aloha,” with a main character named Allison Ng played by Emma Stone, in “Doctor Strange” with the Ancient One played by Tilda Swinton, and in “Gods of Egypt” with just about every character in the movie. Months ago I was surfing the web, and I came across something that said the Japanese audiences who were into this movie were shocked about the outrage. As I’m writing this review, I came across an article from The Hollywood Reporter and it features a quote from a mega manga fan named Tetsuya Kataoka. Tetsuya said “If you want a Japanese cast, then a Japanese company should make the film in Japan,” and someone else said that having a white person, while not as great as having a Japanese person, is better than having a Chinese person. As far as that statement goes, I disagree because Japanese and Chinese people somewhat look the same, but white people don’t look as similar to those two races. Granted Chinese people and Japanese people have slight differences from each other, but they’re more similar to each other than white people are to either of them. Now as far as casting anyone that is a different race than what would be expected for a certain character, is a con for me before going into a movie and I don’t care if it involves whitewashing or not. Although I will say, in general, Johanson does a fine job as Major, and if there were any white people to cast as this character, Johanson, looking back, would definitely had been a good pick.

Now I know what some of you might be thinking, “Jack, what the hell is wrong with you? Is your brain wired incorrectly? You’re only saying this because you think Scarlett is hot!” To answer that possible thought, I will say, yes, she is hot. I even point that out, maybe a little more times than necessary during my countdown of my 10 favorite Marvel Cinematic Universe films (link down below if you want to check it out). However, that’s not necessarily why I approve of this casting choice. I approve of this casting choice because of how Scarlett played the character, it made me feel like I was watching someone who was actually Japanese, it was definitely artificial, but in some ways, I bought it.

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I’m not really gonna talk much about the other characters but I’ll go over some details about them. A number of these characters are also part of the source material and the casting along with the costume design is rather faithful to the franchise, and yes, there are Japanese people in this movie!

I just recently mentioned that Japanese and Chinese folks are similar to each other in many ways. You know something else? “Ghost in the Shell” from 1995 is vastly similar to “Ghost in the Shell” from 2017. This is essentially a live-action remake of the 1995 version only with a few tweaks. So in a way, it’s almost similar to what Disney is doing with a lot of their movies like “The Jungle Book” and “Cinderella.” There’s also a cliche that older material is superior to recreations of the older material, and in the case of “Ghost in the Shell,” that cliche applies here. This, to me, was especially noticeable during the action sequences, which were all eye candy, but they also looked like something I’ve witnessed before.

Basically the action sequences shown throughout the picture all resemble an action sequence we’ve gotten in the 1995 movie. I will say, the first action sequence, the one where we see Major shattering the window of a building, may be better than the sequence it resembles. The one on the right image above wasn’t as good as its counterpart which I have in mind however. The climatic battle in this movie, was somewhat equal to the climactic battle in the original, although it might lose points for that now that I think about it, there’s no originality brought to the table here. I know this is a remake, but I think some things a remake should do are either take a spin on something that could pay off, or improve flaws or imperfections that one would have with the original.

One last positive I will give is the movie’s visual effects, this feels futuristic, pretty, and glossy. The city in “Ghost in the Shell” somewhat feels like a glossier version of the city you’d see in “The Fifth Element.” Then again you can take “Star Wars Episode II” and say Coruscant, based on one scene from that movie, you’d probably know it if you watched the movie, is a glossier version of the city you’d see in “The Fifth Element,” only in that movie it was more of a rip off than anything else! Although, this does make me think of a problem that I’m hearing a lot from people concerning the DCEU films, which is that while they may have great effects and sequences, the story and characters don’t really make up for it. I thought similarly about “Ghost in the Shell,” while I did appreciate the movie visually, I couldn’t appreciate it in a lot of other ways. I tried to like Scarett Jo’s interpretation of the main character, and I liked it various ways, but I don’t think it’ll be remembered as much as what we’ve seen before her interpretation. I didn’t really find the supporting characters interesting, I was just waiting for another cool action sequence because that was the only part of the movie I felt worked so far aside from looking at visuals in general.

In the end, “Ghost of the Shell,” while visually appealing, really could have been improved on a number of other levels. The movie bored me, I may have almost fallen asleep at times, and I wouldn’t say it was worth the $30 I paid for it at the store. I will say this, I would recommend this as a test movie. What do I mean? If you purchase a new media player, like a 4K player or Blu-Ray player, or perhaps a new TV, buy this movie in a high-resolution format and just stare at the TV in awe, because this is like looking at a statue that’s incredibly clean and very well-kept, but at the same time, it’s extremely obscure and not many people would seem to know or care about what they’re looking at. I’m gonna give “Ghost in the Shell,” the live-action remake, a 4/10. This movie, to me, reminded me of when I went to see “Warcraft,” it’s eye candy, but the rest of the movie leaves a bit to be desired. One plus I will add though, out of a lot of bad movies I’ve seen, this isn’t one of those bad ones where I literally raged throughout the entire thing. For the record, I even do that during good movies like “Spider-Man: Homecoming” and “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.”

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Thanks for reading this review, I would like to let everyone know that this weekend I will be at a convention called Terrificon. This is taking place at the convention center located inside Mohegan Sun casino in Uncasville, CT. There’s gonna be some celebrity guests there including some guests from TV’s “Batman,” Burt Ward (Robin) and Lee Merriweather (Catwoman), other guests include folks such as Sean Gunn (Gilmore Girls, Guardians of the Galaxy), Chris Sullivan (This is Us, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2), and Shannon Purser (Stranger Things, Riverdale). There will also be a focus on comics, a celebration of Jack Kirby’s birthday, and a tribute to the one, the only, Adam West. Or is it Adam We? If you get that reference tell me what it’s from down below, I’ll tell you whether or not it’s right, and if you’re right, I command you to pat yourself on the back, unless your hands and arms don’t work. If you see me at the convention and recognize me, don’t hesitate to say hi, I will remember to bring blue sunglasses to make myself look more distinguishable. I’ll be there all three days, August 18-20, but I’ll be at the convention center for Friday and Saturday, just a warning. I can’t wait, it’s gonna be epic! As far as other reviews go, I’m planning on seeing “The Glass Castle” sometime soon and we’ll see what else happens in the near future. Stay tuned for more reviews, and I’ll ask you, what do you think about the “Ghost in the Shell” franchise? What is your favorite edition of the manga? What is your favorite of the movie released in the franchise? What are your thoughts on the video games and the TV shows? Let me know all that down below! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

Where Are The Original Movies?

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Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! Let me ask you a question. What are some movies you’ve seen recently in the theater? I’m willing to bet some of you might say films like these: “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” “Wonder Woman,” “Fifty Shades Darker,” “The LEGO Batman Movie,” “John Wick: Chapter 2,” “The Mummy,” “Kong: Skull Island,” “Transformers: The Last Knight,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” “War For the Planet of the Apes,” “Annabelle: Creation,” “The Fate of the Furious,” “Ghost in the Shell,” or “Power Rangers.” What do these films have in common? Well, none of them are original, they’re all based on something.

If something has been proven recently, at least from my observations, it’s that Hollywood has a desire for taking ideas which have been done in the past, either as an art form or as a real-life event, maybe in some cases regardless of how interesting they are, and making their own adaptations out of it. Even some of the greatest directors of all time have done this, directors who have come up with BRILLIANT original ideas. Christopher Nolan for example, he did the “The Dark Knight” trilogy and he also did “Insomnia,” which is a 2002 remake of a movie released in 1997 which goes by the same name. Robert Zemeckis, the director of the “Back to the Future” trilogy and “Cast Away” has done films based on true events, including “The Walk” and “Forrest Gump,” which were both well received. Joss Whedon, well known for creating original TV shows which have been well received by various people such as “Firefly” and “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” has eventually gone on to direct Marvel’s “The Avengers,” released in 2012, along with “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” released in 2015. Don’t get me wrong, there are lots of times when unoriginal content can work.

There have been plenty of comic book movies that are making buttloads of money at the box office. If one thing has been proven over the past few years, it’s that people, no matter what age, love superheroes. I love em too. When it comes to superhero movies, I generally find them to be fun movies where I can just munch on popcorn for a couple of hours, enjoy some action, perhaps get a few laughs out of my system, or just simply get completely caught up with whatever is going on in a studio’s “cinematic universe,” which both Marvel and DC have going for them at the moment.

There have also been highly appreciated book-based adaptations, in fact, there are some movies that exist I don’t even think some people realize were based on books, or if they do realize that, they never bothered to read them, including “The Martian,” “Arrival,” “Room,” “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” and the entire “Lord of the Rings” saga. Another set of unoriginal ideas that have usually worked include movies based on true events. You might see a number of these around the Oscar season including “Deepwater Horizon,” “The Lone Survivor,” “Zero Dark Thirty,” “Ray,” and “The Hurt Locker.” These films are usually powerful, while also paying tribute to someone or something associated with an event of focus shown throughout, and while they might not always be ENTIRELY TRUE bit by bit, they can make for compelling and interesting stories.

When it comes to misses on unoriginal ideas, one thing people often point to, are remakes and reboots. There are a number of comic book adaptations that are getting rebooted left and right, I’m looking at you “Spider-Man” and “Batman.” Although there have been remakes of movies that were done in the past that have been well received as original ideas, but poorly received as unoriginal ideas. These include “Point Break,” “Ghostbusters,” “Psycho,” “The Wicker Man,” and “Poltergeist.” I don’t work for Hollywood in any way, shape, or form, I’d like to, and I have some ideas for movies and TV shows, both original and unoriginal, but there’s no time to get into that. Although as one who doesn’t work for Hollywood, people like me usually assume that people who think remakes, reboots, and other unoriginal content are what studios should be putting out are just “lazy.” And it may be true, after all, people might sometimes go see a movie if it is something they’re familiar with. As a kid, I was familiar with “Diary of a Wimpy Kid,” both the books and the original movie, so when I heard “Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules” was coming out in 2011, I figured I’d go see that. When “The Amazing Spider-Man” was coming out, I went to see that. I went through this phase for awhile, I barely saw any movies in theaters, although in 2013, that changed, I started getting into other material, and YouTube had an overload of trailers that I checked out and became interested in, therefore intriguing me to see movies involving original ideas such as “The Internship,” otherwise known as, a near 2 hour Google commercial, although not a bad one. “Pacific Rim,” which combines monster movies and “Power Rangers.” and “Gravity,” which might as well be called “The 3D Is So Amazing, You Can’t Even Tell It’s Post Converted!” Now that we’re here in 2017, I think original ideas aren’t happening as often, or, if they are still happening as often, they’re not as successful as I feel they could or should be. Just look at the box office totals for 2017 thus far. I checked Wikipedia’s “2017 in film” page, and the top 10 films in terms of what they earned at the box office are currently all unoriginal.

The movies I found on the list in order from the highest earned total to the lowest happen to be “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Fate of the Furious,” “Despicable Me 3,” “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” “Wonder Woman,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales,” “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” “Wolf Warriors 2,” “Logan,” and “Transformers: The Last Knight.” After seeing this, I went to a page on Box Office Mojo dedicated to the box office results of 2017, and the highest grossing movie I saw on the list which was original happened to be “Your Name,” an animation from Studio Ghibli. I’ve heard fantastic things about the film so far, I haven’t watched it, but I heard great things. This film is at the #15 spot on the list, which interested me. The movie didn’t make much money where I live, which is the US, but it did make money in other countries. I noticed it made lots in Japan, which didn’t really shock me considering how Studio Ghibli is a Japanese animation company. But I also took into account that it made loads in China and South Korea. It’s easy to see why it would make money in countries like Japan, Studio Ghibli is Japanese, it’s an animation which is going to encourage people to bring younger audiences along for the ride, “Spirited Away,” another piece of work from Studio Ghibli was Japan’s highest grossing film ever when that came out, and Studio Ghibli has an excellent track record with their movies. Don’t understand? Just look up films such as “When Marnie Was There,” “My Neighbor Totoro,” “Howl’s Moving Castle,” and “Castle in the Sky.” In a way, Studio Ghibli, may as well be viewed by Japanese audiences in a similar way to how American audiences view Pixar.

One time period that interested me when it came to the making of original content is the 1980s. This was something that came to mind after reading Curtis Armstrong’s new memoir, “Revenge of the Nerd.” In case you don’t know who Curtis Armstrong is, he is a famous actor, and in this book, he talks about his days as a stage actor, converting into a film actor, and everything before and after. At multiple points throughout the book, he’s talking about the “Revenge of the Nerds” series, a series which may contain a defining role for Curtis, Dudley “Booger” Dawson. In case you didn’t know, that series has four installments, although it almost didn’t even make it to two. The first installment came out in 1984, and 20th Century Fox, the studio who owns the movie, thought it was a travesty that belonged in movie hell. For the record, this became a cult classic and perhaps one of the most quotable comedies ever. Just the “Nerds!” chant alone is stuck in my head. 20th Century Fox thought that because of this movie, they should put an embargo against any sequels. Armstrong states in a chapter dedicated to “Revenge of the Nerds II: Nerds in Paradise,” “Fox still considered Revenge of the Nerds a misstep and, in addition, had implemented a strict studio-wide no-sequel rule as part of their new “quality-control” policy. As far as quality control went, it was successful in eliminating sequels but it didn’t stop them from continuing to release plenty of inferior product. But it was “original” inferior product, so that was okay.” I’ll say, just be glad that “Return of the Jedi” came out in 1983 or we probably would have less of a chance of seeing that movie come to life, perhaps zero chance even! Although, if the sequel embargo were still around, “The Phantom Menace” would have probably never been made so that’s one disappointment of the embargo going away. Well, as long as prequels count here too and not just sequels. “Revenge of the Nerds II: Nerds in Paradise” was actually the first sequel to be green-lit by Fox once the sequel embargo was no more, as Curtis heard from one of the cast members from the series, Robert Carradine, who’s known for playing the character of Lewis. What people like Curtis and Bobby saw from Fox in the 1980s is pretty much the opposite of what everyone’s seeing today from just about every film studio. Boy have times changed!

When I look at studios today, not to mention people making pitches to studios, I kind of feel bad at times. Part of me imagines a reason why we aren’t seeing original ideas anymore. That reason being, is that studios are afraid. What are they afraid of? Not getting enough money, and they see a movie that has been successful in the past and their brain is directed towards remaking that movie instead of new and fresh movie. Just look at Disney right now!

Here’s a question. When was the last time Disney made an original movie? OK, it actually wasn’t that long ago with films like “Zootopia” and “Moana,” but they’ve released LOTS of unoriginal content over the past few years! Disney seems to have a fetish for live action remakes, with movies like “Cinderella,” “The Jungle Book,” “Pete’s Dragon,” “Beauty and the Beast,” and you even have remakes for “Aladdin” and “The Lion King” currently in the works. Lucasfilm, which has “Star Wars,” was once owned by Fox, but now they’re part of Disney! So you can basically say that Leia is now technically a “Disney Princess!” Disney even owns Marvel, so basically every single movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is a Disney movie! Fox still has the rights to “Fantastic Four” and “X-Men,” but Disney has “Iron Man,” “The Avengers,” “The Incredible Hulk,” “Captain America,” “Doctor Strange,” “Thor,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Ant-Man,” and part of the rights to “Spider-Man.” They are continuing to make separate stories about superheroes including “Black Panther” and “Captain Marvel.”

Despite what I’m seeing with all of these unoriginal ideas, I still occasionally take a glance at original ideas every once in a while when the opportunity comes up. This year, when it comes to original ideas, I’ve seen movies like “Baby Driver,” “You Can’t Have It,” “Gifted,” “Snatched,” and “Colossal.” Believe it or not, I actually dislike three out of these five films. Although I wouldn’t say they’re absolute atrocities, except for “Snatched.” I walked out of “Baby Driver” and “Colossal” with grades of at least 9/10. This is a sign that original films can still rock. When it comes to the box office, “Baby Driver” was on the higher end of the spectrum this year, not as high as “Your Name,” but so far it’s beating unoriginal content like “Power Rangers,” “The Emoji Movie” if that counts, “Rings,” and “Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie.” For “Colossal,” that film’s in the middle when it comes to the box office as a whole this year, but keep in mind that it’s a film from a studio that’s just starting out and it wasn’t in too many theaters. “Colossal” is an independent film directed by Nacho Vigalondo, and it’s being distributed by Neon, and according to Wikipedia, this is the first film Neon ever distributed. For home video, they have a distribution deal with Universal, which part of me dislikes because they’re owned by Comcast and I hate those psychos right now, but whatever. They haven’t done many films right now, so if you’re perhaps an independent filmmaker and looking for a distributor, try looking into Neon.

Another hope for originality, believe it or not, is Amazon. How do I know? Recently I Googled, “how long does it take for an amazon original movie to become free” because I wanted to check out an Amazon Studios movie called “The Wall,” but I was also curious, as an Amazon Prime member, the average time it takes for a movie under Amazon to become free to Prime members. I clicked on the first result that came up, stating: “Amazon Studios Frequently Asked Questions : Amazon Studios.” Before we get any further into this, Amazon has done original movies including “Manchester by the Sea,” “Paterson,” and “The Neon Demon,” and even done original TV shows including “Transparent,” “Goliath,” and “Sneaky Pete.” When it comes to the process of making something such as a movie or TV show which can be distributed by Amazon, it’s all explained where I checked. This whole process is not for minors, however if you are 18 or over you can submit your ideas to Amazon all you want, which honestly just excites me. Why? I turn 18 in November. So if I have an idea that I feel could make a good script and it’s completed when I’m 18 or older, I can submit it to Amazon! As far as I know, Amazon hasn’t done much unoriginal content whatsoever, they’ve taken content that revolves in one way or another around past events including “The Man in the High Castle,” “The Big Sick,” and “Gleason.” Another part that a lot of consumers might enjoy is one that I somewhat hinted at not long ago, if an Amazon Prime member ends up watching your movie on Amazon once its out of theaters and releases on home video, chances are it might be free, because Amazon has a list of exclusive films and they’re all free for Prime members.

I want to know, do you have an original idea for a movie or TV show? Well, if you do, I recommend pitching it somewhere, probably Amazon, but if you want to leave a comment as to what your original idea is, go ahead! But be careful, because if you don’t pitch it, that idea could be someone else’s, possibly mine! I would give my own ideas, but there could be a chance that some schmuck could see it and possibly steal it in a couple months!

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Thanks for reading this post, I once again want to remind everyone that next weekend I’ll be at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, CT for Terrificon, a three day convention lasting from Friday August 18, to Sunday August 20. I’ll be at the convention center on Friday and Saturday, but I will be in the building all three days, although I won’t be there for long on Sunday. I’m planning on possibly livestreaming for some of the convention on Twitter, so follow my account, @JackDrees, if you want to check some of that out, but that’s if I actually livestream. Also, if you are at Mohegan Sun for the weekend, don’t hesitate to give a hello to me if you know who I am or recognize me. You might just find me somewhere wearing blue sunglasses. And no, not for cosplay purposes. I’m not sure if I want to do any future posts on the convention, like on what I get there or anything like that, but only time will tell. But if you do want to check out my post that I did, exposing some details about the convention itself, I’ll have a link to that down below, and if you want to check out the website for Terrificon, I’ll have a link to that down below as well! Stay tuned for more posts and reviews! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

MY TERRIFICON PREVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2017/07/13/announcement-im-going-to-terrificon-at-mohegan-sun-in-uncasville-ct/

TERRIFICON WEBSITE: http://www.terrificon.com/

Man Arrested For Pleasuring Himself at a Showing of The Emoji Movie *CHILDREN MAY READ AT THEIR OWN RISK*

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Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! In case you didn’t glance over the entire title of this post, this post is a bit unsuitable for younger viewers. This involves masturbation, so if you let your children read this blog, let them read at their own risk, otherwise, enjoy reading this! So, where was I? Oh yeah, right. Based on my recent reviews, my brain is scarred! I’m still alive, but I feel appalled. I recently reviewed “The Emoji Movie” and “Sharknado 5: Global Swarming,” I want something good to review! Speaking of terrible films such as “The Emoji Movie,” we’re actually going to talk about it. Not about the movie, not about its poor reception, not about how it’s an abomination against humanity and how it literally is a disgrace for solely existing, we’re gonna talk about one specific moviegoer who, let’s just say, “had some fun” at “The Emoji Movie.” I can’t freaking believe I’m saying that!

Alright ladies and gentlemen, let’s dive into New Jersey, a US state with towns that have fascinating names including: Mahwah, Paramus, and Hackensack. There’s a theater called Xscape located in the town of Howell, a less interesting name, where the event of focus here occurred. During a showing of “The Emoji Movie,” “a white, heavyset man in his 20s or 30s” was one of the members of the audience during a showing on Thursday, August 3rd, and hopefully one of the ONLY members of the audience. There was also a woman there with her children, she noticed the man with his pants unzipped, stroking himself.

According to the woman there at the scene, she said the man “was seated alone in the back row of the theater.” If you ask me, you shouldn’t masturbate in a movie theater, especially if it’s a family film we’re talking about here, but I’ll give credit to the man for sitting in the back so nobody had to be distracted by him from behind. Nevertheless, despite what was said about this man being in his 20s or 30s, it turns out the man was actually 43 years old. His name is Abraham Parnes and he was charged with lewdness and left on a summons. You know what he didn’t leave with? A refund for his ticket for “The Emoji Movie.”

In all seriousness though, before the arrest occurred, the manager was aware of all this. The woman actually reported the incident to the manager, the manager came into the theater and told the guy to leave. Once the woman got home, she called the police, and the police eventually arrested the man.

There are multiple things that happen that very rarely take place, or might even occur only once, and remain that way. There’s only one time the Arizona Diamondbacks won the World Series, not to mention there’s only one time they even made it to the World Series at all. Jimmy Carter served as the US president for only one term. The TV show “Firefly,” which is now beyond revered among the nerd community, only lasted for one season on FOX. Multiple things seem to happen only once, and never again. Masturbating in movie theaters IS NOT ONE OF THOSE THINGS.

While cell phone use in movie theaters is a lot more common than masturbation in movie theaters, this is not a one-time thing. Another fellow who was once caught masturbating in a movie theater goes by the name of Paul Reubens, to some of you, this name might sound familiar. If it does, chances are you may know him as Pee-Wee Herman in “Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure” and as Lock in “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” Between the releases of both pieces of work, Paul Reubens went to an adult theater in 1991, where he too was caught masturbating. He defended himself overtime in an interview to Playboy, but people still recall his arrest. So yeah, Paul had a hell of time with his pee-wee. My biggest question is this, what did Paul see in the theater? He went to an adult theater after all, so if it wasn’t related to porn then what excuse did he have to play with himself? Part of me wonders if what he was watching happened to be so boring that he had nothing better to do than jack off. He could have walked out of the auditorium and whipped it out at home, perhaps he could have purchased a Playboy Magazine beforehand! But apparently that wasn’t the best idea for him. So instead of buying a magazine from Playboy that could have made him avoid this incident, he attended an interview by Playboy which partially involved this incident. Now that I say all of this boredom stuff, I wonder if that was the reason for Abraham masturbating during “The Emoji Movie.” Was the movie too boring and he wanted to make the experience more interesting? In fact when I ask if the movie is boring, I know I’m asking a rhetorical question. Just look at the reviews for the movie! Here’s some quotes from a few:

JOHNNY OLEKSINSKI (New York Post): “Hear that? It’s the end of the world.”

MICHAEL ARBEITER (Nerdist): “perhaps the most convoluted high-concept science fiction film you’ll see all year.”

MARA REINSTEIN: (MaraMovies.com): “Excuse me while I scan my phone for the vomit emoji.”

This is a case of either getting bored or the moviegoer started getting horny after looking at Jailbreak or Flamenca. Anything could have happened to make the guy start stroking his “eggplant” but who knows what?

I will say, I never masturbated in a movie theater, I mean, why would I do that?! I’m there to watch a movie, not jerk off! If I went to a theater with the intention to jerk off, that would probably be a porn theater! Although chances are I can’t really go in one of those because I’m not eighteen yet. Plus I don’t even think any places like those even exist in the first place! I can imagine some theaters thought it was fine for some people to jerk off during films like “Showgirls” or “Fifty Shades of Grey” or “Secretary” or “Magic Mike.” OK, maybe I’m going too far with that, maybe they didn’t think it’s “fine,” it would likely get the seats wet but maybe they thought it was somewhat, well, let’s say, “understandable.”

I could ask if you have ever done anything dirty in a movie theater but that just seems extremely eccentric, so instead I’ll ask this. What is the weirdest thing you’ve witnessed in a movie theater? It could be anything, it could be a movie, it could be anything in the bathroom, it could involve a person, anything. Let me know in the comments! Also, be sure to check out my review for “The Emoji Movie!” I have the link for it below if you want to check it out, it’s a good read! Another thing I’ll state is that I don’t know what I’ll see next, I do have intentions to see “The Glass Castle,” hopefully I could see something before next weekend because I’ll be at Terrificon in Uncasville, CT! If you’re at the Mohegan Sun casino and happen to recognize my face from August 18-August 20, be sure to say hi if you want to! Also if you want more info on the convention itself, I have a post dedicated to it that’s essentially a preview. Tickets are still available for the event although if you want tickets for it, get them quick because Saturday and Sunday tickets are selling fast, not to mention, the convention is less than a week away! Stay tuned for more posts and reviews, and I hope I can see something soon, even if it’s worse than “The Emoji Movie!” Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

“THE EMOJI MOVIE” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2017/08/02/the-emoji-movie-2017-a-literal-pile-of-sir-patrick-stewart-warning-strong-language/

MY TERRIFICON PREVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2017/07/13/announcement-im-going-to-terrificon-at-mohegan-sun-in-uncasville-ct/

TERRIFICON WEBSITE: http://www.terrificon.com/home.html

Sharknado 5: Global Swarming: Another Attempt at Jumping the Shark

You know what I’m afraid of? Sharks. You know what I’m also afraid of? I’m afraid of the “Sharknado” franchise and what it is doing to the movie-viewers of our world! These movies just keep on coming out even though they just plain suck! Now that we have five of these, I have yet another crapfest to suffer through!

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So… it’s come to this. “Sharknado 5: Global Swarming” is directed by Anthony Ferrante, who also directed the first four “Sharknado” installments. This movie stars Ian Ziering (Beverly Hills, 90210, Godzilla: The Series), Tara Reid (The Big Lebowski, American Pie), Dolph Lundgren (The Expendables, Universal Soldier), and Cassandra Scerbo (Make It or Break It, Not Another Not Another Movie). I could tell you that this movie is about stupidity and leave at that, but since I attempt to put a lot of effort into my reviews, perhaps more than various films I watch, I’ll dive into the plot. The plot is that the whole shark-tornado phenomenon has gone global. This all starts in the city of London, where our heroes are meeting with NATO, unfortunately for Ian Ziering and Tara Reid’s characters, they lose their son, Gil. Now in order to save him, they must travel into a sharknado (laughs).

I’ve watched multiple installments of “Sharknado” before, in fact I’ve actually reviewed “Sharknado 4: The Forth Awakens” when that came out. What did I think of that movie? Well, it was a piece of s*it. And you know something? The same can be said about “Global Swarming.” “Sharknado” is a franchise I know a number of people like… for some reason. They know it’s cheesy, they know it’s bad, but they still enjoy it. What do I think? I can’t stand it. To me, “Sharknado,” as far as movies on TV go, is like the “Transformers” franchise when it comes to movies you see in the theater. Only difference is that I can find enjoyment out of “Transformers.” Although when I saw the fifth one, I was kind of just done with it. Now that we have FIVE “Sharknados,” I’m just BEGGING to Syfy to just bury it in the ground. I get this is a TV film and it’s kind of meant to be cheesy, but there’s so much that is happening, so much that I complained about while watching this crap that it literally destroyed my mind afterward. Down below I have an actual tweet from my account that I posted last night, moments after finishing “Sharknado 5.”

Also, I livetweeted through this s*itfest, much like a great portion of people who own a TV, here’s some of my tweets:

Want to watch this movie? If you said no, I wouldn’t blame you. Anyway, let’s talk about the characters. That is if, they’re actually characters, to me they’re really just people written, I’m sorry, I mean, SCRIBBLED on a page for the sake of making a so-called story.

We’ll start off by talking about April, played by Tara Reid, one of the only positives in the entire movie, and possibly the franchise, only because she’s hot. Although then again, saying that is almost like saying that I’m dating the best girlfriend in the world because she’s the best looking woman I found on, I don’t know, Tinder or something, and she’s great at sex. But in reality, my girlfriend has no personality, just sex appeal. Well I guess my girlfriend’s actually not that great then. Other than that, I don’t care about her, I can’t really relate to her, I just literally wanted every character in this film to die. Although one plus I can give April is that she didn’t ruin the “Star Wars” line “May the force be with you,” once more. All the other things I remember about her character is that she is basically an 80’s humanoid at one point, and she does all sorts of shark-killing s*it. What else is there to remember? Oh my gosh, I’m GETTING A HEADACHE WHILE WRITING THIS REVIEW! I DON’T THINK I’M KIDDING WHEN I SAY THAT! Then again you can’t see me, so, what do I know, what do you know, what does anyone know?

Let’s get to stupid character #2 and talk about Fin Shepard, played by Ian Ziering. I barely recall anything he did in this movie much like April. I just remember he was there for shark killing, he was looking for his son, and I also remember him at the end. I SWEAR to you, this movie is ultra-forgettable. It’s RARE for me to actually forget about a movie shortly after I see it. When the movie’s two leads are barely even memorable other than their names, that’s a problem. And I’ve seen every “Sharknado” movie. THAT’S A FACT. I watched the first one, I saw the sequel but it was being riffed by Rifftrax, I saw the third one but it was more of something that was just on in the background, I don’t really recall that much, I witnessed, livetweeted, and reviewed the fourth one, and now I saw this monstrosity. Also, one of the things I hated the most about this film is this line he gives to the pope, “Forgive father, for I am Fin.” I lost my mind when I heard that crap!

Also returning in “Sharknado 5” we have the character of Nova, played by Cassandra Scerbo. I remember her more in the first minutes of the original “Sharknado” compared to “Sharknado 5” so that says something you need to know about this character. Once again, I barely remember anything about Nova, I don’t care about her, and I was just like, why are all of these people I’m tweeting alongside with obsessed with her? Is it because of how hot she looked in the first movie when she was in her bathing suit? By that logic, Nicola Peltz’s character from “Transformers: Age of Extinction” must be a phenomenal character because she’s a 10/10 when it comes to looks, even though she didn’t give a good performance.

Last but not least when it comes to “characters,” we’re gonna focus on Gil. I don’t have an image for him, couldn’t find too many likable ones, so bear with me. I HATE GIL. I thought he was just plain annoying in “Sharknado 4” but now that we’re somehow here in “Sharknado 5,” he’s gone from bad to worse. While he wasn’t technically as annoying as he was in the installment before this new one, he played a huge part in the movie, which ultimately made me not root for anybody in. He got sucked into a sharknado, and now it is up to April and Fin to save him. I may be a dick for saying this, but seriously, after hearing this kid squeal in the last movie I was just done with him, I was like, “Goodbye kid, I don’t need you no more.” Although when it was revealed that April and Fin were going to try saving him, I lost my s*it. Sure, it’s their kid, but that kid f*cked up my brain in the worst way possible!

Another reason why people watch these films are the celebrity cameos. And while they aren’t really cringeworthy, you can’t help but think, “Why are they here?” You’re seeing all of these people: Claudia Jordan (Deal or no Deal, The Price is Right), Abby Lee Miller (Dance Moms), Fabio, and Tony Hawk, how much are they being paid? Are they being forced to do this against their will? The only cameo I ended up liking and remembering was Gilbert Gottfried’s, which was one of the cameos, if not the only cameo I ended up liking in the fourth movie. Although after seeing this movie, I’m glad I can think to myself that Gottfried is still putting out quality content and not just this stuff. Seriously! Have you seen a couple of this year’s episodes of “Last Week Tonight?” His voice is dubbed over the voice of Jared Kushner!

Let’s get this out of the way. Two things I hate in life are Comcast and product placement. This movie, unfortunately, combines the two together. This is actually, believe it or not, something that occurred in “Sharknado 4,” and seeing it here, it’s actually not as bad here as it was there. In fact, if I remember correctly, I believe there’s less product placement in this movie than the previous one. Although when it comes to Xfinity at the end of the film, the film began to make me screech like a fire alarm. I get it Syfy, you’re owned by NBCUniversal, a Comcast company, doesn’t change the fact I think this is s*itty product placement and it makes me angry!

In the end, “Sharknado 5: Global Swarming” continues to make me lose my faith in humanity. We’ve created masterpieces such as “The Wizard of Oz,” “Back to the Future,” “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” now this is the entertainment that people want. I want more quality content, I don’t care what it is, just give it to me! At least “Jaws” listened to viewers and knew when to stop making movies, they stopped at four installments, this series is still going, and it’s gonna keep going until the end of time… (Sigh). One last complaint I have before I give my final verdict is the screaming. I get it, it’s a sharknado, but this movie didn’t learn it’s lesson from the last movie and to not give a headache to its audience from the screaming. Surprisingly, Tara Reid gave an annoying scream. I couldn’t believe what I was watching. I don’t watch “Game of Thrones,” but I was watching this, and I knew someone else on Twitter who was watching this too, at one point they changed the channel to HBO to watch “Game of Thrones,” I imagine they made the right choice. I’m gonna give “Sharknado 5: Global Swarming” a 1/10. “Sharknado,” I need you to learn from the pros, although I don’t think you’ll listen to me because you’re a TV movie, know when to settle down. Joel Schumacher’s “Batman” series stopped after a couple of installments, the older “Superman” movies stopped at “Superman IV: The Quest for Peace,” “Back to the Future” stopped as a trilogy, take notes. Just let your series become obscure enough for no one to ever have to experience again, and we shall have peace. Thanks for reading this review, I kind of hope I’d watch a better movie after watching “The Emoji Movie” recently, but what can you do? Although if you do want to check out my review for “The Emoji Movie” be sure to click the link down below and check it out! Also, if you’re somehow into “Sharknado” or you just want to see me talk about more bad movies, be sure to check out my review for “Sharknado 4: The Fourth Awakens.” It’s been over a year since I reviewed that piece of crap and the fact that it exists, much like the movie we’re focusing on, is a sin in itself. Stay tuned for more reviews! I want to know, what do you think of this movie? Do you like the “Sharknado” franchise? Do you think I’m being too hard on it? Let me know in the comments! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

“THE EMOJI MOVIE” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2017/08/02/the-emoji-movie-2017-a-literal-pile-of-sir-patrick-stewart-warning-strong-language/

“SHARKNADO 4: THE FOURTH AWAKENS” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2016/08/01/sharknado-4-the-fourth-awakens-may-the-absurdity-be-with-you/

Transformers “Bumblebee” Spinoff to Release Same Day as Aquaman, PLUS WHY THIS IS A BAD IDEA

Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! I enjoy watching big budgeted blockbusters. They are movies I can have fun with regardless of how serious they portray themselves. These partially include some of the comic book based movies we’ve gotten over the years. I enjoyed movies like “Captain America: Civil War,” “Wonder Woman,” and “Doctor Strange.” Now, if you have been following movies in recent years, you may notice every winter, there’s that one blockbuster movie that everybody goes to see. In 2009, that was “Avatar.” In 2012, that was “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.” In 2015, that was “Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens.” This year, I bet that movie will be the next “Star Wars,” but in 2018, you’ve got a number of blockbusters coming out that people will probably see, including “Aquaman” and “Bumblebee.” Now if you are unfamiliar with these upcoming films, let me give you a little info as to what kind of ride you’re in for.

“Aquaman” is going to be based on a popular DC Comics character. This movie is going to star Jason Momoa (Baywatch, Conan the Barbarian) as the title character, it is in the same universe as “Man of Steel,” “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice,” “Suicide Squad,” “Wonder Woman,” and “Justice League,” which is to be released this November. The main premise is that Arthur Curry, AKA Aquaman, learns he is the heir of the underwater kingdom of Atlantis, and he must face front to his folks and be a hero to the world.

“Bumblebee” is part of the “Transformers” franchise. This installment is specifically directed towards the series established starting in 2007 with “Transformers,” directed by Michael Bay. This film is a spinoff to those movies, exclusively about Bumblebee, one of the recurring autobot characters from the series. The movie is also going to also feature characters played by Hailee Steinfeld (The Edge of Seventeen, Pitch Perfect 2), Pamela Adlon (King of the Hill, Californication), and pro wrestler/prank call meme, John Cena (The Wall, American Grit). This film is set to take place in the 1980s, where we see Bumblebee as a VW.

Now I’ll ask you, which of these movies sounds more exciting? If you said “Aquaman,” I wouldn’t be surprised. As of now I think both movies probably aren’t gonna be fantastic, but we’ll see what happens. Why am I not surprised if you said “Aquaman?” Well, let’s start with the obvious, it’s a f*cking superhero movie. If anything gets audiences in the theater nowadays, it’s superheroes. “Deadpool,” which was released last year is now officially the highest grossing R rated movie ever made except for “The Passion of the Christ.” Marvel’s “The Avengers” is the #5 movie ever in terms of worldwide gross. 2017 has seen a huge success when it comes to superhero movies at the box office. This has been proven with movies like “Wonder Woman,” “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” “Logan,” and “The LEGO Batman Movie.” Not to mention, people are hyping the hell out of movies like “Thor Ragnarok” and “Justice League.” The superhero train has been going on for a long time and something tells me it won’t come to a stop for a while.

As far as “Transformers” goes, the concept is not bad at all, the reason why people go see these movies because it involves giant robots fighting. Although if there’s something the “Transformers” series has taught its viewers, it’s that the robot fighting isn’t really the main focal point. So far there have been five installments in Michael Bay’s “Transformers” franchise. Right now, one of them is still in theaters, and not surprisingly, not many people seem to enjoy the latest addition. If you ever read my review for the fifth and previous installment, otherwise known as “Transformers: The Last Knight,” you may notice I share a similar opinion. None of the movies in the franchise are masterpieces in any sense of the word. I consider the first “Transformers” to be underrated, but it’s not the next tour de force or anything. The second installment is mediocre. The third one is almost as good as the first one, but the ending is kind of weird. The fourth one is not great, but it has some likability throughout. The latest one however is my least favorite in the franchise, and while there some things I admired throughout, I ultimately remember getting physically angry during the presentation. Another thing I’ll state has to do with the box office. Judging by worldwide numbers, “Transformers” has made $709,709,780 at the box office. “Revenge of the Fallen” made more with a total of $836,303,693. “Dark of the Moon” made a total of $1,123,794,079 making it #15 on the all time worldwide box office list. From then on, the totals shrunk, “Age of Extinction,” despite making a lot of money, didn’t live up to the success of the third movie with a worldwide total of $1,104,054,072. Although that movie did incredibly well in China and it became one of the all time highest grossing movies ever released in that country. The fifth movie is currently not at the lowest spot on this list but it’s not as high as “Revenge of the Fallen,” but also keep in mind that the film recently came out. As of now, it has $570,708,186 and counting. Could it at least beat the second movie? Who knows?

Let’s also judge based on quality here. I mentioned before that none of these “Transformers” movies are masterpieces despite earning tons of money, the same can be said for some movies made by the guys who own “Aquaman,” Warner Bros. and DC. Much like Marvel, DC is getting its own cinematic universe, which is known as the DCEU, AKA the Detective Comics Extended Universe. This will continue with the release of “Justice League” on November 17th of this year. While most of the DCEU movies so far have gotten some form of divide from movie to movie, the most recent released work, “Wonder Woman,” was generally well received. In fact, it’s one of the few films this year I gave a 10/10 to. Granted it’s not perfect, the villains aren’t memorable, they serve their purpose but it’s nothing to rave about. Although it’s better than some MCU villains *cough* Ronan, we’ve gotten over the years. That’s probably the only flaw I can state when it comes to “Wonder Woman.” The other movies are essentially mixed bags. A lot of people either really like “Man of Steel,” or really hate “Man of Steel.” I’m one of the people who likes it, although I do think it has flaws. “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” was disliked by critics and fans alike, although some people think it’s good, and some even go so far to say it’s actually genius because of something involving the name of “Martha.” I agree, it’s actually a cool idea, but the movie itself was at times, boring, lacked a story, and even had a terribly miscast Lex Luthor. Although I will say other positives in movie existed: The score, Wonder Woman, and the climax. So ultimately, “Batman v. Superman,” despite having flaws, to me, became more watchable since it first came out. When it came to “Suicide Squad,” I liked it the first time, but despised it the second time. The movie has plotholes galore, flashbacks galore, and despite the soundtrack having some good tunes such as “Sympathy for the Devil,” “Seven Nation Army,” “Bohemian Rhapsody,” and being able to enjoy all of the tunes at first, something about it feels off now that I think about it. I didn’t care as much the second time around and I kind of hate Harley Quinn a little bit because it was revealed in the DCEU, she killed Robin, so essentially we never got to see him. Oh, and LEGO Batman makes fun of it in his solo film.

“What am I gonna do? Get a bunch a criminals together to fight the criminals? That’s a stupid idea.” –Batman

When it comes to money, all of these films were successful. Each one except “Man of Steel” is now in the top 100 when it comes to worldwide lifetime gross at the box office. Although none of them made it to the gross which the third and fourth installments of “Transformers” achieved. Only one of these movies made it past “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” and that was “Batman v. Superman.” Speaking of “Batman v. Superman,” it did receive a big drop at the box office on its second weekend. This is possibly due to bad reviews, other movies being out, or the fact that everyone wanted to see it on opening weekend even if it meant skipping out on your family’s Easter dinner.

While it is true that the third and fourth installments of “Transformers” made a lot of money, it’s also true, that the fifth one, despite having earned a lot right now, might not make as much as other installments in the series. All the movies now look and sound the same and there’s very little diversity in terms of formula and plot, if there is a plot to begin with. Also, one of the biggest criticisms given by moviegoers to the franchise is that it focuses too much on the human characters. That’s not what they paid to see. It’s quite possible that this upcoming “Bumblebee” movie could be more about Hailee Steinfeld more than anybody else, including Bumblebee himself. Maybe it could work, perhaps if there’s not gonna be many other robots in the movie it could be like “The Iron Giant.”

Some people are also saying that superhero movies are reaching a peak. Based on the popularity and fascination people still have for superheroes, I don’t see anyone usually tired of superheroes. If this idea of superheroes peaking doesn’t grow any bigger, then I can see “Aquaman” getting more money. Speaking of money, I believe “Aquaman” has one ENORMOUS advantage in their favor if being a superhero film wasn’t enough. This may sound like a pun, but trust me, it’s not.

Unlike “Bumblebee,” “Aquaman” is going to be optimized for the IMAX experience. If there’s one gimmick that most moviegoers are willing to pay extra money for, it’s IMAX. I’m DEFINITELY one of those people. Why do I bring this up? Well, let’s dive into it. So far, every installment in the DCEU has been enhanced for IMAX and the same can be said for every installment in the “Transformers” franchise. Both universes in my book, are both excellent for IMAX. In the DCEU, you get a lot of fast paced action as you may see in “Man of Steel” and “Batman v. Superman.” As for “Transformers,” each installment contains loud and epic giant robot fights, that’s IMAX material right there! Part of me feels like as far as the IMAX experience goes, people would pay extra to see superheroes fight on an IMAX screen, although wouldn’t mind settling for another experience. But when it comes to robots fighting, IMAX would immediately come to mind for a lot of people.

Also, remember the December blockbuster topic this is all a focus on and other movies associated with this? Movies like “Avatar,” “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” and “The Hobbit” series were all released in IMAX. The fact that “Aquaman” will be released in IMAX can possibly support my statement that it will end up making more money than “Bumblebee.” Although if you go back to 2014, a month before December, “Big Hero 6” beat “Interstellar” at the box office and yet “Interstellar” was MADE for IMAX, and I mean MADE for it considering how it was partially shot with IMAX film cameras. Once again, I’ll say, it was BEFORE December which both movies came out so that may not be the best point.

One last point I’ll make before this post is over are the directors of the individual films. Both directors have done well received work in the past. In “Bumblebee,” you have Travis Knight (left), an animator known for his work on “Kubo and the Two Strings” and “Coraline.” He hasn’t directed all that much, but he directed “Kubo” and that was one of my favorite movies of 2016, so that gives me some confidence that he’ll put some effort into “Bumblebee,” hopefully more than Michael Bay. As for “Aquaman,” that’s being directed by James Wan (right), who’s well known for his work on horror films including “The Conjuring,” the “Saw” series, and “Insidious.” He’s also the director of “Furious 7,” which I consider to be one of the best installments in the “Fast & Furious” franchise. Both movies have great talent behind the camera, we’ll just have to wait for the final product.

I want to know, what do you think of all of this? Do you think it’s a good idea for these two movies to compete against each other on the same opening day? Why or why not? Also, which one of the movies being focused on here are you personally more excited for? Thanks for reading this post. I might review a movie next week, I might not. I don’t know what I’m doing yet. However if you do want to check out my movies which I have reviewed recently, I shall inform you that for your pleasure, you f*cking sadists, that I went to see, the one, and hopefully the only, “The Emoji Movie.” I enjoyed this movie, possibly in an alternate universe, but in this universe? Hell no! There’s an icon that can take you to this review, I hope you enjoy it, but if you’re a kid or you’re reading this with a kid, enter with caution, because in terms of language, this is probably the most swearing I’ve done in any of my reviews. Nevertheless, I hope you enjoy reading that review, and stay tuned for more reviews! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

The Emoji Movie (2017): A Literal Pile of Sir Patrick Stewart (WARNING: STRONG LANGUAGE)

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Before we begin this review of the piece of crap they call “The Emoji Movie” I would like to remind everyone that I’m not doing this for clicks, as you can see above, I have proof I saw this. I’m doing this review for a couple of reasons. 1: To give you a movie review. 2: I’ve gotten requests to do this. I would like to say to those people, thanks for the request and I’m happy to deliver on it, but at the same time, f*ck you. But seriously, who doesn’t love hearing a guy complain about a s*itty movie? If you have children, let them read at their own risk, and enjoy my review!

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“The Emoji Movie,” AKA an animated s*itshow, is directed by Tony Leondis, who you may know for directing “Igor,” an animation from 2008, and it stars TJ Miller (Silicon Valley, Deadpool), James Corden (The Late Late Show with James Corden, Gavin and Stacey), Anna Faris (Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, Mom), Maya Rudolph (Bridesmaids, Grown Ups), Steven Wright (Mad About You, Son of the Mask), Jennifer Coolidge (Legally Blonde, 2 Broke Girls), and Patrick Stewart (Star Trek: The Next Generation, X-Men). This movie revolves around the Meh Emoji, played by TJ Miller, and if you know the Emojis and are familiar with them, you’d know they represent symbols and they can’t really change, so naturally in this movie about Emojis which actually live inside a person’s phone, each Emoji is only capable of making one expression. However, TJ Miller’s Meh is a bit more expressive, making him unique from other Emojis. However Meh isn’t intending on having that unique quality about him last so he sets out on a quest in order to make him a normal Emoji.

I bet you’re asking, “Jack! What the f*ck are you doing?! This movie has no potential! Why are you seeing this?!” My answer to you is, I don’t know. Going in, I expected this movie to make me want to kill myself. On opening night, “The Emoji Movie” was leaked to have gotten a 0% on Rotten Tomatoes. Granted the rating has gone up since I found out about that, but it’s worth pointing out. If I weren’t doing this blog, I’d probably ignore this movie, but the thing is, quite a few people have requested that I’d do this. I made a Twitter poll not long ago and when the results came in, it turned out more people wanted me to review “The Emoji Movie” than not review it. So ultimately, I wanted to see how deplorable this movie actually was. And trust me fellas, this movie was crap! This is probably the worst animation I’ve ever seen. This movie copypastes elements from other animations which have been released over the years but has none of the charm, heart, humor, or likability needed to make a good product. This movie makes “Ice Age: Collision Course” look like “How to Train Your Dragon.” This movie makes “Transformers: The Last Knight” look like “Pacific Rim.” This movie makes “Terminator: Salvation” look like “TRON.” This movie makes “Battlefield Earth” look like “Interstellar.” This movie makes “Fant4stic” look like “Spider-Man 2.” “The Emoji Movie” is so bad that it doesn’t come as much of a shock when you think about it, it’s a movie about Emojis! A concept which on paper, sounds dumb as s*it and is also dumb as s*it in reality. When I talked about the first teaser trailer for this atrocity, I knew something bad was going to happen, and damn I turned out to be right!

Let’s talk about TJ Miller’s character of Meh in depth. If you ask me, I like TJ Miller, I enjoy him in “Silicon Valley,” I appreciated his character in “Deadpool,” and I also like his voice. Even if he’s doing crap, he still does a fine job. For example, he was in “Transformers: Age of Extinction,” which in my book is mediocre at best. He played a character named Lucas Flannery and at one point while watching that character, he might as well come off as some sex pervert or something. Granted he’s not on screen as long as other characters, but this is something many people saw in that character. If you watch him in the beginning of the film, you’d probably have a good guess as to what I’m talking about. TJ Miller wasn’t terrible casting-wise for Meh, which utterly surprised me, he also isn’t TERRIBLE as a character, but the thing that this movie was trying to do with a lot of the characters, this one included, was make them funny, although the movie failed to deliever on that. Although I will say, one thing that’s kind of funny about TJ Miller being cast in this movie, is that in “Deadpool,” another movie he’s in, he has to explain to the main character of Wade Wilson, what the poop Emoji is.

WADE WILSON (Ryan Reynolds): (Looking at a text from Ajax) What is that?

WEASEL (TJ Miller): That’s the s*it Emoji. You know the turd with the smiley face and eyes. I thought it was chocolate yogurt for so long.

Along Meh’s journey over the course of the runtime, we meet a couple supporting characters. Hi-Five (James Corden) and Jailbreak (Anna Faris). This is part of where the elements from other animations come into play. Hi-Five is basically the comic relief of the film, it’s almost like your typical “scene stealer” you’ve seen in movies like “Up” (Dug), “The Secret Life of Pets” (Snowball), or “Frozen” (Olaf). I’m fine with this movie having a character like that, but the big problem I have with the character has to do with the most basic quality a comic relief character needs, which is humor! I don’t recall any funny moments from the character, same for the movie itself. I wanted this character to literally DIE. There was one moment where there was some sort of giggle coming out of my mouth, but I need more than a giggle! In fact there were actually kids in this theater with me, they almost didn’t utter a sound. I actually was in the second upper row in the theater, there was barely anyone in my row, but one row above me, there was a family. I don’t know what their final thoughts are on this movie, but I remember one part of the movie scaring a kid, and I recall that more than making them laugh. By the way, the character who caused the kid to get terrified was Smiler, played by Maya Rudolph, we’ll get to her in a bit, but let’s talk about Jailbreak for now. Jailbreak wasn’t the worst character on screen, although there were some things I didn’t like about her for sure. One thing that was noticeable was how much she was like Wyldstyle (Yes, that’s how her name is spelled) from “The LEGO Movie.” The only difference between her and Wyldstyle is that Jailbreak doesn’t have a boyfriend when we first meet her, and she’s basically displayed as some sort of feminist. I don’t have too big of a problem with that, but still. Not only do we get a rather cliche character, but as she develops during the film, she just becomes more and more cringeworthy! Oh yeah, speaking of cliche characters from animations, TJ Miller’s Meh, who we recently talked about, actually is kind of stock too! In a way, he’s almost like Emmett from “The LEGO Movie” and Ralph from “Wreck-It Ralph!” I imagine some of the people imagined this is part of went on behind the scenes. Some dumbasses watched some animations and said “Oh yeah, that was the s*it!,” and thought “Let’s try to recreate those, but with Emojis!” So they went to Sony Pictures Animation and suggested this s*itshow of an idea to them and Sony Pictures Animation told them, “Welcome aboard! Time to capitalize on the name “Emoji!” Who cares if it’s s*it? We decided that “The Angry Birds Movie” was a good idea so let’s become known as the phone movie gods!” My response to that is, thanks Sony Animation! Thanks for being a bunch of f*cking twerps that don’t understand the concepts of art and storytelling (flips two birds)!

On a different subject, let’s talk about Maya Rudolph’s character of Smiler, she was the film’s main antagonist. I find this character to be one of the most annoying villains I’ve seen in my life. And by annoying, she didn’t exactly annoy any of the movie’s characters, she annoyed me. I HATED her voice. She’s basically what would happen if Joy from “Inside Out” went insane. I despised this character! As a villain, her motivation was clear, but as a character, her personality didn’t make me smile, IT MADE ME RAGE! Speaking of things that made me rage, we get ANOTHER similarity to “The LEGO Movie” when it comes to the villain! She has these minions that are supposed to look menacing, you know how in “The LEGO Movie” they have these characters referred to as Micromanagers? They’re all black and red and they essentially, well, micromanage stuff. Guess what’s in this piece of crap?! MORE BLACK AND RED MINIONS! They look different and they don’t exactly do the same thing the Micromanagers do, but it just comes off as unoriginal especially when you keep a lot of the other elements from this film in mind. What are the names of the minions? I don’t know and I don’t give a f*ck!

One of my absolute biggest disappointments concerning “The Emoji Movie” is Sir Patrick Stewart. Now keep in mind, when say Patrick Stewart is a disappointment, I didn’t hate him in this movie, it’s just that I wanted to see more of him. He plays the Poop Emoji, and I think it’s a superb casting choice, by far the best one in the movie. Who doesn’t want to see a British piece of s*it walking around with a remarkably soothing voice? I will say, regardless of what you think of Patrick Stewart in this film, there’s one interview where Stewart is talking about the movie, it’s on “Conan.” The interview was meant to promote “Logan,” but Patrick Stewart and Conan O’Brien talked about “The Emoji Movie” at one point. I don’t know, I just love it. The video’s down below if you want to watch it.

Although one of the biggest flaws when it comes to this character, is something concerning him and his son, Poop Jr., or PJ. There’s this one scene from the trailer containing a poop joke, you know what I’m talking about if you’ve seen it. Before that even happens, Patrick Stewart comes out of a stall with his son, who is established to be ten years old. I’d be OK with this if the son was like, I don’t know, three and he wasn’t toilet trained, or if he was puking at one point or had diarrhea or something, but the problem here is, he’s toilet trained, shouldn’t he be in his own stall? Does he or his father have some sort of fetish with watching people eliminate waste? OK, no, that’s probably not the case, this is a kids movie, but still. In fact, during the same scene, TJ Miller’s Meh is in the bathroom too, he’s actually in there with his mother and father. One thing I want to know, is this a unisex public restroom? Because if it isn’t, this would be really awkward. Also the record, it’s easy to tell based on the qualities of the characters that none of the Mehs are transgender or anything. Just put the father Meh in the bathroom without the mother and you would avoid me questioning this scene! Speaking of which, let’s talk about Meh’s parents.

The parents of Meh are referred to as Mel Meh (Steven Wright) and Mary Meh (Jennifer Coolidge), and they serve their purpose. They’re there when they need to be, but my biggest problem with them is that maybe they’re in the movie a little too much. OUT OF THE MOTHERF*CKING BLUE, some subplot comes up that has to do with them separating, which basically does nothing for the film as a whole! You may as well consider this the opposite of “Seinfeld” because “Seinfeld” is a show about nothing and yet it turned out to be something, and here, you get something, but it turns out to be nothing! By the way, there’s a f*cking “Casablanca” reference thrown in somewhere into this subplot. THIS MOVIE TRIED TO REFERENCE “CASABLANCA!” A critically acclaimed, black and white film, was referenced, in this movie! I’m a sucker for references, but movies, TV shows, video games, whatever it may be, in my book, have to make sure these references are utilized properly and doesn’t end up feeling forced! I haven’t seen “Casablanca,” but this reminds me of the “Ghostbusters” remake when they try to reference “Scarface!”

Now part of movie takes place in this inside a real world and another part of it is in a virtual world. Does it sound like something that’s been done before? If you said yes, I’m with you because this idea has been done before. Three movies that pop in my mind when it comes to this are “Wreck-it Ralph,” “The LEGO Movie,” and “Inside Out,” all of which I consider to be great. You can also say this was done in 2011’s “The Smurfs,” but you’d be wrong, that has transporting between dimensions, not to mention it’s just hilarious to call “The Smurfs” a MOVIE. Here, the virtual world is inside a cell phone with all of these apps and Emojis and all sorts of other s*it. The real world is basically during present day, and we see a teenage boy who has a crush on a girl. While they did happen to exchange phone numbers, he’s still a little apprehensive towards the status between him and the girl because he’s having trouble deciding what to say to her and what Emoji to send to her. Now one movie reviewer whose content I frequently check out is Jeremy Jahns, he has an “awesometacular” YouTube channel. He mentions in his review that this makes no sense because the boy and the girl already has given out phone numbers to each other so the boy should have no problem contacting this girl. Believe it or not, I don’t use Emojis quite often, but I am in high school, and IF I have a crush on a girl, I might sometimes not know what to say or type, or if I know there’s something I know I want to say or type, I might not know exactly when I want to say or type it. The boy in this movie, the one who owns the phone all of these Emojis are in, wasn’t a horrible character, but watching him at times in this movie was just weird. His role in the movie involves trying to ask out Addie, the girl he has a crush on to what is referred to as the “Fall Dance.” That’s a pretty cliche dance name if you ask me, but that’s not important. He also is trying to take his phone to tech support because it’s starting to go crazy due to all the activity going on in there with the Emojis. He certainly moved the plot along, but when you combine the world of the Emojis with reality, it suddenly becomes cringeworthy. This is especially noticeable during the “Candy Crush” segment of the movie. In fact, let’s compare this to two other animations, “Wreck-It Ralph” and “Inside Out.” This also just goes to show you how much this movie is like those!

When it comes to both of these movies, both of those take place in two different dimensions which can’t be crossed. In Wreck-It Ralph, you have the real world, which is basically inside an arcade, and for the virtual world, it’s inside the games which make up the arcade. In “Inside Out,” the movie took place in the real world, where we see the life of Riley, the film’s main character who moves to San Francisco with her parents, along with the virtual world, which is inside Riley’s head and we get to look at all of the emotions such as Joy, Fear, and Anger. What makes “Wreck-It Ralph” and “Inside Out” great is that they focus a lot on their story and happen to remain smart, which is kind of funny because this movie takes place in a “smartphone.” Also, “Wreck-It Ralph” was a fun ride for kids and adults alike, “Inside Out,” wowed me and almost made me cry at the end. Another similarity is that these three films contain a character going on an adventure away from where they primarily belong, which is fine, I don’t mind that, but the other movies did it better. Also, the inclusion of “Candy Crush” kind of reminded me of “Sugar Rush” from “Wreck-It Ralph.” The way the characters and apps are in “The Emoji Movie” remind me of “Wreck-It Ralph” too because in “Wreck-It Ralph” you’ve got all of these iconic video game characters like Pac-Man, Q*bert, Bowser, Zangief, and Sonic the Hedgehog, who actually was played by the same guy who did the voice for him in “Sonic Free Riders” and “Sonic Generations.” In this movie, it’s kind of hard not to include these characters, after all, this is “The Emoji Movie,” but “Wreck-It Ralph” did a better job at including those characters by not including anything that would be considered forced or cringeworthy. Not to mention, the characters that are all in the Wreck-It Ralph video game are exclusive to this movie, they aren’t based off of any sort of video game, they were made up for the “Wreck-It Ralph” movie. When I first heard about “The Emoji Movie,” I thought this movie wasn’t necessary. I gave kudos to the animators for making it look good, but then again you can look at an animation like “Ice Age: Collision Course” and say it looks good. Also, in “Wreck-It Ralph,” the video game the main character belongs in goes out of order due to “technical difficulties,” and in “The Emoji Movie,” the phone might not have much time left because of its own technical difficulties. And there’s one moment in this movie, specifically towards the end, which reminded me of a flashback that occurred in “Wreck-It Ralph” in Sugar Rush.

One thing I DETESTED in this movie is the obnoxious product placement! This movie has more product placement than a Michael Bay “Transformers” film! You can argue that “The LEGO Movie” was a commercial, but here’s the thing, the story came first. It almost felt like Sony Animation or someone else behind this film thought about contacting a bunch of companies who make apps and say “Hey, you want to be in our s*itf*ck in the ass?” and they somehow put them all in there so they can just make s*itloads of money! “The LEGO Movie” utilized product placement to a certain degree and there’s only one moment in the movie that feels commercial-esque (the moment that talks about a bunch of LEGO sets) but not only does it fly by, it’s kind of makes me laugh. This movie has an entire segment inside “Candy Crush” that moved the plot along, and when it comes to other stuff, it’s almost like this: “You guys know Facebook? Oh look, here’s Facebook!” “You guys know YouTube? Here’s YouTube!” “You guys know Instagram? Oh look, there’s Instagram!” There’s also a segment containing a dance sequence which was PAINFUL to watch. Guess where it takes place? “Just Dance!” There’s even a moment where our heroes have to get to Dropbox! Not only that, but guess how they get there? Twitter! No, they don’t go through the app, instead, the Twitter bird mascot shows up! What the f*ck?!

I want to ask something, were you expecting a good movie out of this? Because I sure wasn’t. This was one of my least anticipated films of the year, and the reason why I saw it is basically people wanted me to go see it. I’m doing this for others, not myself. “The Emoji Movie” is nothing but a rip off of better animations, a s*itty idea which became a s*itty movie, and a poorly written, anger-inducing f*ckpile of a film created by a bunch of c*cksucking jackasses that just want to capitialize on a trend! If this movie makes enough money, there’s a slight chance that some motherf*cker might make a “Fidget Spinner” movie! I have a good idea for one, but we DON’T NEED ONE! If you bring your family to this film, you’d all probably be bored. If you bring your boyfriend or girlfriend to this film, they’ll dump you. If you bring your husband or wife to this film, they’ll divorce you. If you bring your best friend to this film, they’ll call the friendship off. If you bring your boss to this movie, they’ll fire you. If you bring a celebrity or someone like that whom you admire because they like you well enough and want to hang out with you, they’ll need a restraining order in order to protect themselves from you. “The Emoji Movie” is a quality example of a s*itty Hollywood movie that f*cks up people’s minds and makes them all explode. I’m gonna give “The Emoji Movie” a Sir Patrick Stewart/10, which can translate to 💩/🔟 if you speak Emoji, which can also mean s*it/10, although if you’re a kid it would be better for you to say poop/10, which in plain English, comes out to 1/10. There’s no reason for this movie to exist, I’ve only seen a few movies in my life that are worse than this damn pile of holy s*itness. I would probably much rather go back in time and f*ck Adolf Hitler in the ass than watch this movie again. Also for the record, I’m heterosexual so that makes it extra embarrassing. Thanks for reading this rant–err–I mean, review. Please don’t see this movie. You’re better off watching “Dunkirk” with your kids. Sure, it may be a war film with scary events happening, but at least you’ll be watching art. Speaking of which, check out my review for “Dunkirk,” the link is down below, it’s a good read, I highly suggest you check it out. Stay tuned for more reviews! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

“DUNKIRK” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2017/07/26/dunkirk-2017-a-bloodless-yet-realistic-depiction-of-war/

Is Dunkirk the Best IMAX Experience Ever?

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Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! If you followed my blog at all recently, you may know that I loved the movie “Dunkirk,” it’s not perfect, but I even think it has a slightly higher replay value than “Wonder Woman,” which I actually gave a 10/10 in my review for it, by the way, it’s still a 10/10 must see in my book. I originally gave “Dunkirk” a 9/10, which still stands, but the fact is I might watch “Dunkirk” more than “Wonder Woman,” at least that’s what my mind says for now, because “Dunkirk” is a very unique survival story whereas “Wonder Woman” has some cliches, although those cliches are done in a way to make you feel like you’re experiencing something totally new or fresh, kind of like in 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” Not to mention, despite the villains being better than numerous MCU villains we’ve gotten over the years, they didn’t exactly reach a level of greatness. In my review for “Dunkirk,” one thing I touched upon, was the experience itself. “Dunkirk” is being released in 6 different formats, I only saw the movie once so for now I only got to experience “Dunkirk” in one format. The formats listed are IMAX 70mm, standard 70mm, 35mm, IMAX laser, standard IMAX digital, and traditional digital. By the way, there are no 3D options for this film, only 2D, which can be a plus considering the extra fee you’d usually have to pay for 3D. I did a post last month recommending that you should see “Dunkirk” on film, although today we’re gonna talk about IMAX because when I saw this movie in IMAX, it was a fairly unique experience, and this is coming from someone who often goes the movies and sees a good number of them in the IMAX format. When I went to see the movie, I got to experience it in IMAX 70mm in Providence, RI, IMAX 70mm is suggested to be the highest format possible. Slate has a very informative and excellent video on this whole format comparison and it is almost hard to say it better myself, the link is available below if you want to watch it.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2017/07/25/we_watched_dunkirk_in_standard_digital_and_70mm_imax_to_see_if_viewing_format.html

Now if you were planning on seeing “Dunkirk” at some point, first off, do it now while it’s still in theaters, it’s a great movie and deserves to be seen in the theater! Second, one of my biggest recommendations is that you avoid traditional digital projection. Why? Simply because you’ll be missing details or a scope from this movie that you could see in any other format. I’ve gone into depth about this before, but I need to bring it up again. When I brought it up for the first time, I said that you must see this movie on film. While that is true, today I’m going to talk about IMAX, specifically. Yes, even digital! And I actually want to talk about IMAX in depth, which I’ve done before, but this is gonna be informative.

Before we get into projection, I want to talk about one of IMAX’s screens. This is an IMAX digital screen. If a movie is being played and projected to cover the whole screen, the aspect ratio would be 1.90:1. The main purpose for these screens is to retrofit multiplex theaters such as Regal or AMC for “the IMAX experience.” Is it worth the money? To me, only in a number of circumstances. For example, if there’s a big movie out and I want to go to a super enormous IMAX only to find out they have no tickets left for the movie I’m see, that happened to me when I saw “Rogue One” on opening night, or if I want a bigger screen and tuned up audio than what you’d get in a normal theater. The digital IMAX experience is by no means, a terrible experience. It still has the traditional IMAX surround sound which moviegoers love, it still has a big screen, although it’s not as big as other IMAX screens and it’s only slightly bigger than a traditional movie theater screen. To compare, screens under the IMAX digital treatment, have been measured in feet, I have a local IMAX screen which has been marketed to be “eight stories high.” Is that an exaggeration? Possibly, but if you check out the screen in person, it’s pretty freaking huge!

Right here we have the IMAX digital projection system. This has, unfortunately, been cheating many moviegoers over the years. Not only is it small projection by IMAX standards, not only has it been used on small IMAX screens, but it also has been used on IMAX’s big screens as well. We’re gonna be talking about a couple more projectors in a moment, but let’s get something out of the way. The traditional IMAX aspect ratio, AKA, the aspect ratio you’d see while watching documentaries on IMAX’s big screens in museums, aquariums, and a few other places, is 1.43:1, and part of “Dunkirk,” was shot in order to be featured in that format. That means, no matter what you see on an IMAX screen like this, that is if the theater is using digital projection, there will be black bars on the top and bottom of whatever you’re seeing. In fact, there’s even this one movie I went to see in IMAX, in fact, IMAX brought back “The Wizard of Oz” for a week once. I have not seen “The Wizard of Oz” in IMAX anywhere, but it was only available for IMAX digital projection. So I would imagine that if you went to see this movie in a true IMAX theater, some folks might not only be distracted by black bars on the top and bottom of the screen, but also on the sides.

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Here we have what most folks, including me would refer to as “true IMAX.” This screen can be completely covered with an image which has an aspect ratio of 1.43:1 and the projectors that bring that image to life are actually the clearest IMAX has to offer. IMAX digital, when showing a movie, can create a 2K image with a dual set of projectors, whereas IMAX laser, an IMAX digital superior, also has a set of two projectors, but can fully project a 4K image. IMAX 70mm projectors can project images at a much higher quality. The contrast ratio is lower than the other projectors, but it’s not really that bothersome to me. I have a 4K TV in my room which has a lower contrast ratio than a 1080p TV I once had in my room, and I never recalled something like that bothering me. Granted it was only slightly lower, but still. In fact, when comparing the contrast ratios of these projectors, they are all not really too far apart from each other. The images you can see on this projector can be shown at a rate of 18K. These projectors have also operated in IMAXes with a 1.90:1 screen. A few years back, the Chinese Theater in Hollywood retrofitted one of their cinemas with IMAX technology including the IMAX digital projection system. Although in 2014, they did a special engagement for Christopher Nolan’s “Interstellar” which made them one of the theaters to feature the movie in the IMAX 70mm, so an IMAX 70mm projector was hooked up for this occasion. What did it look like on the screen? I don’t know. I imagine it looked nice, but I wouldn’t know if the curtains had to cover part of the screen to truly immerse the audience or what. As of now, they have the IMAX laser system. And I hear that they aren’t the only non-1.43:1 theater to have this. The Empire Leicester Square IMAX in London has a laser projection system as well.

Just an FYI on the traditional IMAX projection systems. The first one I’ll introduce is the Grand Theatre projector. This is an IMAX 70mm film projector, not only that, but it’s also the one intended for the largest of the IMAX screens. The top right picture contains a Small Rotor projector. This projector also plays IMAX 70mm film, although it is meant to be projected towards slightly smaller screens. Despite the screens being smaller, it’s still bigger than the screens you’d find at your standard multiplex’s IMAX digital theater. The last projector, displayed on the bottom is the IMAX laser projection system. As mentioned, this is clearer than IMAX digital. Granted this still digital, but it’s clearer digital.

Another theater I’ve yet to go over is the IMAX dome. These are also referred to as OMNIMAX. I don’t go to these theaters that often, in fact I’ve only been to one twice and they were both on school field trips. Unlike most theaters which has you looking at either a flat or slightly curved screen, the OMNIMAX will allow you to look upward at a screen that is basically showing you images in a fish eye perspective. IMAX screens are never flattened in any of the theaters which IMAX equipment exists. They are either curved or domed. And yes, domed is actually a word, I didn’t think it would be. Although if you don’t want to look at an IMAX screen that looks more like a TV screen or a traditional movie theater screen, OMNIMAX would be a good option. And to my knowledge, pretty much all of the OMNIMAX theaters operate with IMAX 70mm projection equipment. I heard La Geode, a dome in Paris which uses IMAX technology has made some upgrades over the years, but they still have the IMAX 70mm equipment for what I know. If you guys know of an IMAX dome that DOESN’T currently have IMAX 70mm technology, let me know about it in the comments section.

IMAX is also well known for its audible sound systems. IMAX theaters usually have 6 channels of surround sound in, but recently they’ve been installing 12 channel sound systems, both of which sound amazing and they totally shake the whole theater at times.

I know I’m going on for a while about this, but to get to my main point, I needed to talk about IMAX in general. As mentioned before, I saw this movie in IMAX 70mm film. I mentioned in my review for “Dunkirk” that this movie must be seen on film. Honestly, I think it should be seen any way you can see it, but you should seek out ways to see it that aren’t traditional digital projection. IMAX has digital projection, but since it’s technically a one of a kind theater, I wouldn’t say it has traditional digital projection. Let’s start off with the reason that can apply to every IMAX theater in the world, the sound.

I just recently mentioned that the sound is amazing in IMAX regardless of whether you’re in a theater that has 6 or 12 channels of surround sound. I’ve been to the IMAX many times in my life, and I’ve experienced a lot of movies there that really made me feel like I was in the action just on sound alone. There have however been few movies that have done that more than others. These include movies like “Interstellar,” “Night at the Museum,” “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” and “Jurassic World.” “Dunkirk” is no exception to this. I can still recall when this movie started, it put me RIGHT into the action. After all, this movie, is basically, all action. It’s just one battle/survival sequence for nearly the whole runtime. Now I saw “Dunkirk” in an IMAX with 6 channels of surround sound, so imagine how much more audible this movie would be if I were in a theater that had twelve of these bad boys! I actually live ten minutes away from an IMAX with 12 channels of surround sound, so if I see “Dunkirk” there, just think about what would happen! This is one of those movies where I was also able to believe the sound. There have been movies where I’ve been impressed with sound editing, but sometimes it might either be sounds we’ve heard before, maybe one sound choice doesn’t work, or it just sounds too theatrical. Pretty much all of the sound in this movie, felt real. All of the bombs in this movie, sounded like real bombs. All of the gunfire sounded like real gunfire. There are some other really good sound choices during this movie. If you saw the first announcement teaser and remember all of those soldiers on the boat, the sound in that scene is awesome to say the least and it really built the tension.

Also, no matter where you see it, look forward to how the movie looks. This movie looks GORGEOUS. Not only is the cinematography a thing of beauty, but at times, it can really put you in the movie. This is partially because most of the movie was shot in the IMAX format, which as mentioned, can allow the whole screen to be covered. This at times will allow for a more immersive experience, especially if you’re seeing this movie in a 1.43:1 theater. At times, I felt like I was having all sorts of flyers going around me, the paper kind, not the plane kind. Also at times I felt like i was on a beach. One other example of how the IMAX technology is utilized is during the scenes featuring the fighter pilots. In “Star Wars” one of the best sequences in those movies happen to feature dogfighting in space and it is pretty fun to watch. It’s fast paced, it’s got terrific sound, it’s adventurous. Here though, it’s none of that, but I’m not saying that’s a bad thing. OK, I take that back, the sound’s actually not bad at all. In “Dunkirk,” it’s absolutely realistic. At times, you might look inside the cockpit of the fighter plane and notice the pilot and it’s just very crammed all over. Then you look outside and it’s almost like you’re the pilot and you’re just trying to concentrate on your enemies. The gunfire from the plane also sounded authentic and it didn’t feel Hollywoodized. Very little of this movie has sequences with black bars. You can look at other movies like “The Dark Knight” and possibly appreciate the IMAX sequences you get, but it takes up about thirty minutes of a movie which is two hours and thirty-two minutes long. “Dunkirk” is shorter than “The Dark Knight,” an hour and forty-six minutes to be specific. Although “Dunkirk” has more footage shot in the IMAX format and covers the screen for about eighty minutes of the entire movie, which means you get more time dedicated to greater immersion.

The only downside I can say I have with seeing this in IMAX 70mm, and this is something I actually noticed when watching “Interstellar” in IMAX 70mm as well, is that while the movie sounds beyond amazing, it might actually prevent you from hearing or understanding some dialogue. This was a minor issue though. When I was watching this movie, there was actually less I could understand. Partially because of the accents, which I’m able to let slide, and also because of the music. Don’t get me wrong, the music was spectacular. I love the work and effort Hans Zimmer put into this movie’s score which was really engaging, but sometimes it was overpowering and I couldn’t hear some dialogue. It’s a minor issue though in my book. I imagine that would probably be different when experiencing this movie in a different fashion. Also, another reason why this is a minor issue to me is because I wasn’t able to connect with any character during this movie.

As much of a disconnection with characters sounds like a negative, to me, it’s a positive. Because from what I gathered, this movie isn’t about the characters, it’s about the event itself, and despite how the movie didn’t take much time to build characters, I still rooted for all of them because their ultimate goal, is just to survive, and I gotta say given the situation they’re in, rooting for them makes lots of sense. I just want to say something, Michael Bay should take notes from this movie. Because if you watch any of the movies from his “Transformers” series, you might notice how he doesn’t make it mainly about the transformers and basically gives human characters more spotlight. In every one those movies, you have either Shia LeBouf or Mark Wahlberg playing their own version of “Mr. Relatable” and the Transformers are essentially there with their own story to provide the movie’s action even though there’s more focal points of the movie with that. If Michael Bay toned it down with the human characters and put in more robot action, these might be better movies. I’m not saying the human stuff is terrible, it just isn’t all that necessary. With that being said, this movie which is a focal point of the post, is “Dunkirk,” it doesn’t have any person’s name in it, it’s just “Dunkirk.” Sure, this movie can be called “Dunkirk” and still work with relatable characters in it, but the take without any sort of character development personally worked for me because let’s face it, war is brutal. War sometimes doesn’t give you much time to sit around and talk or have chats during battle. This movie doesn’t really give any of the characters any time to relax, therefore it doesn’t give you any time to relax, and I felt like I was at war the whole time, partially thanks to the ridiculously cool IMAX experience I had. While we’re still talking about this, the only thing missing was the blood, however the movie is still realistic enough even without blood.

No matter where you end up seeing the movie “Dunkirk,” you’ll probably end up having a good experience, but why settle at good? Standard digital projection at this point may be considered good, but any other format can provide a better experience and when it comes to IMAX specifically, this movie was made for it per se. I’ve seen a lot of movies in IMAX, immersion is a factor that has often applied to the IMAX experiences I’ve witnessed, and it is not really hard for IMAX movies to allow you to immerse into them, but this one, made me feel like I was literally in it, as if it were super immersion. Is this the best IMAX experience of all time? It’s most certainly one of them, maybe not the best to me, but it’s VERY CLOSE, but it could be the best to some people. I personally thought “Interstellar” was the best IMAX experience I’ve encountered, not to mention the best movie experience I encountered. I still remember the beginning of the movie when I heard the Indian surveillance drone flying by. It was almost as if the sound of the drone entered one ear and flew out the other. Also, if you can a place that has IMAX 70mm equipment and it’s being used for “Dunkirk,” go there. There are BARELY any movies played in that format and this is one of this year’s couple movies playing in IMAX film, if you want to know the other one that’s actually going to be “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.”  On a last note, go see “Dunkirk,” just do it, in fact based recent critical responses, you’re probably better off taking your kids to see “Dunkirk” as opposed to “The Emoji Movie.” Thanks for reading this post, and speaking of IMAX, I’ve actually just encountered some interesting and shocking news concerning IMAX because it involves an alteration that probably nobody saw coming. That, as a matter of fact, is how IMAX plans to calm down a little bit on 3D releases. I might do a post on that, I’m not sure, but we’ll see what happens. Also be sure to stay tuned for more movie reviews, including possibly one for “The Emoji Movie,” a review I don’t want to do, but I’ve been requested to do it, so I may as well get that s*itshow out of the way. Stay tuned for more great content! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

The Emoji Movie Scores 0% on Rotten Tomatoes, IS IT REALLY THAT SHOCKING?

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Hey everyone, Jack Drees here! One of my last posts of 2016 had to do with “The Emoji Movie.” In that post, I dove into the sheer awfulness of the teaser promoting the movie, along with the idea of the movie itself. By the way, if you’re interested in that post, the link for it is down below. There was also another trailer for this movie, which by the way, was better, but that didn’t get me any more excited for the film. This flick has a cast with names I like, including TJ Miller (Silicon Valley, Deadpool), Anna Faris (Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, Mom),  Patrick Stewart (Star Trek: The Next Generation, X-Men), and even Sofia Vergara who I like despite how I think “Modern Family” might as well just be the single most overrated show, if not in the territory for sitcoms, ever made. The animation overall, at least from what I’ve seen, isn’t all that bad either. Aside from these statements, I can’t really think of any other positives I can give based on what I’ve witnessed other than one example of toilet humor from the main trailer. Why am I doing this post? Well, this isn’t a review of the movie, I haven’t seen it. Other people have though, and so far the results are not looking good.

The Emoji Movie: How is This a Thing?!: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2016/12/27/the-emoji-movie-how-is-this-a-thing/

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As of now, this movie has 0% on Rotten Tomatoes! This is something that I don’t normally see with many films. Although there are films that currently stand among this category, including “Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2,” “Space Chimps 2: Zartog Strikes Back,” “Fred: The Movie,” “Max Steel,” “The Ridiculous 6,” “Beethoven’s 4th,” “Mulan II,” “The Fox and the Hound 2,” and “United Passions,” a movie so poorly received that The Guardian’s own Jordan Hoffman said in his review “as cinema it is excrement.” Haha, love that quote. I just want to remind everyone, that there’s this one movie that came out last year in January, which was also animated. That my friends, is “Norm of the North.” I never saw it from beginning to end, although if that’s something you’re interested in (laughs), it’s free on Amazon with Prime Video. Many people consider this to be one of the worst animations ever made, especially when you consider the fact that it was in theaters. It currently has a 3.7/10 on IMDb, along with a 9% on Rotten Tomatoes. I know “The Emoji Movie” literally just came out, but this could be worse than “Norm of the North.” A lot of people disliked “Norm of the North” due to it’s animation and content displayed in the movie. I can only imagine how this movie would be compared to that. The animation looks decent in the trailer, so either it looks like crap in some scenes of the movie I don’t know about, or everything else is beyond horrible and the animation is just fine.

I wasn’t even expecting this movie to be good, I was just hoping the folks over at Sony Pictures Animation would put at least a shred of effort into this movie, and speaking of underwhelming animations, Sony Pictures Animation came out with a movie last year as well, which also has to do with something iconic related to phones. That, ladies and gentlemen, is referred to as, “The Angry Birds Movie.” Much like “Norm of the North,” I didn’t see this, but I heard it wasn’t too great. It got decent ratings on IMDb, 6.3/10 to be specific. But this film does have its haters, haha, I kind of just made them sound like trolls. This film was considered underwhelming due to how it seemed to display conservative propaganda, from my view from watching the Cinemasins video on this movie I have no idea if the people behind this movie ere even go for that or what. There’s also how it seemed to make particular viewers think that some of the movie might actually be a little over the edge for certain children, and other reasons. Also, you have to consider the fact that this was written by the same screenwriter who wrote the first two live-action “Alvin and the Chipmunks” movies.

This almost makes me think that in the near future, we’ll be seeing more movies based on stuff having to do with your phone or other electronics. What’s next? A movie about Twitter where we have to root for the blue bird who has some necessary story arch? A movie about Snapchat where we have to root for the ghost in the middle of the yellow square? A movie based on Subway Surfers where there’s a subway surfing competition? A movie based on Jetpack Joyride which is basically an escape movie the whole time? A social media mascot cinematic universe? People are saying that movies based on video games are crappy, let me just remind you that I have an idea for a video game based movie and I do think it has potential, but I don’t have time to get into that. Movies based on Emojis is probably, on paper, one of the dumbest concepts I’ve heard for a movie, AND IT GOT GREENLIT! AND RELEASED! IN THEATERS! IN REAL-D 3D! Just be glad Christopher Nolan’s “Dunkirk” came out last week or else this would receive a greater chance of being an IMAX movie!

So I was right, this movie is very likely to be an abomination. If I go see this movie, I wonder if I’ll just mark it as the worst movie of the year. I can only imagine what would happen from here. As much as I don’t want to see the movie to maintain my utter sanity, I also feel like seeing it just to see how truly awful it really is. If I don’t see this in the theater, I’ll more than likely buy it or rent it when it comes out on home video. If there’s anything else left to say, it’s this. First off, f*ck you Sony and Sony Pictures Animation for releasing this. Second, to this movie, I gotta say, good luck at the box office, good luck. Who knows? Maybe my ten dollars could go towards this movie, only time will tell. Thanks for reading this post, and also be sure to check out my latest review for the movie “Dunkirk.” Just click on the red box that will take you to the review, or who knows, maybe if you scroll down, that review will be right below this post. I love the movie, I highly recommend it, but also recommend you read the review just you know what to expect going in. Also, be sure to look forward to my future reviews, I mentioned I MIGHT review this movie, not sure though. Although I will say I do want to check out “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets” and “Atomic Blonde” because they do sound intriguing. Stay tuned for more great content! And since we’re talking about Emojis, this is a reminder to everyone to not be a 💩😶, if you don’t know what that means in your native language, unless you speak Emoji, comment down below and I’ll leave a response to that comment saying what that means. Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

Dunkirk (2017): A Bloodless, Yet Realistic Depiction of War

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Now before we begin my review for “Dunkirk,” I want to remind you that this movie is playing in several formats all over the world. If you want more information on that or if you want help on deciding how or where you should see the movie, I’ve got a couple links down below. The first link is to a post I did about a month ago concerning this movie, and if you aren’t satisfied with that, the second link is to a Vox article on the same topic, and personally, even though the first link is my own work, I will admit I think the Vox article does a better job on showcasing all of its information and including all of the necessary details whereas I might leave certain things out or focus on certain ideas more than others, so make your pick. Nevertheless, both of these are informative reads and don’t worry, neither of these contain spoilers for “Dunkirk.” Anyway, on with the review!

MY POST: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2017/06/19/why-dunkirk-must-be-seen-on-35mm-film-70mm-film-imax-70mm-film-or-imax-laser/

VOX ARTICLE: https://www.vox.com/culture/2017/7/19/15985474/dunkirk-explainer-format-imax-digital-70mm-35mm-buy-ticket

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“Dunkirk” is directed by Christopher Nolan (The Dark Knight, Interstellar), one of my favorite directors of all time. The movie has characters played by Fionn Whitehead (Him), Aneurin Barnard (War & Peace, Citadel), Kenneth Branagh (Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, Henry V), Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises, Mad Max: Fury Road), Mark Rylance (The BFG, Bridge of Spies), Barry Keoghan (Rebellion, ’71), Jack Lowden (Denial, The Tunnel), Tom Glynn-Carney, and Harry Styles, which if you’re a dad and you have a teenage daughter, there’s a chance to your misfortune that she probably dragged you to a concert he has performed at one point.

This movie is based on a true story which took place during World War II. Basically, the entire movie revolves around a battle which the Allied soldiers of Britain, Belgium, and France are surrounded by the Germans. At this time, the Allies are trying to flee away from the beaches and harbor of Dunkirk, France.

If there’s one thing I was anticipating about this film, perhaps near the top of list of things to anticipate in this film, it was the experience itself. This movie was shot partially with IMAX cameras and the rest was shot with standard 65mm cameras. No matter where this movie was going to be shown, it was probably gonna end up looking beautiful based on footage I witnessed before going to see this film in the theater, but if it was shown on a high quality projector, it might just be like looking at something with a naked eye. Now I saw this movie at a theater which is over an hour away from my house, it’s an IMAX theater and it’s located in Providence, RI, and I went for a number of reasons. To see the film the way Christopher Nolan intended, to see the film on film, and possibly catch details that my friends seeing this movie at a standard theater like AMC, Regal, Showcase, Carmike, Warren, Cinemark, Alamo Drafthouse, or Santikos won’t see if they actually happen to check out this movie at a theater like that. As I’m writing this review, not only do I recommend you see this movie on film, preferably on higher quality film, if you see this in digital, unless it’s IMAX probably, especially laser, you may as well be missing out on a film experience to remember. Because this may be in my top 5 (wild guess) movie experiences, based on picture and sound, I’ve ever encountered. Regardless of what you think of this movie in terms of content or story, this will definitely be something to remember based on senses. Also, if you want a link to where you can find all of the theaters playing the movie in 70mm, including IMAX, here’s a link to where you can find them, and I’ll give credit to these guys because the image displayed above showing a format comparison, that’s something I found in this link.

http://nofilmschool.com/2017/07/christopher-nolan-dunkirk-70mm-release

Before going into the theater, I’ve seen a number of a reviews for this film, and one complaint I’ve often heard is the lack of characterization in this film. Now, THAT IS TRUE, there is a lack of characterization. But you know what? I don’t f*cking care! Because believe it or not, it actually works! Let’s face it, this is a film about war, this is a film about survival. There’s action throughout the ENTIRE movie, not to mention this is based on true events. I can imagine some people talked with others during this scenario a little bit, but I think there aren’t many times when someone makes friends or just has time to chit chat when they’re in the middle of a big, loud battle of a war. Don’t get me wrong, characterization can work in movies, but not every movie needs it. And there definitely have been times where it didn’t work. Just look at the “Star Wars” prequels! I got to say, this is one of those movies I really appreciate, even though I barely know anybody’s name or much of their background aside from which side they’re on.

This paragraph is gonna focus one of my biggest fears going into this film, and then I’m gonna drift off track a bit, then we’ll get back into gear. You may be curious, what is this big fear? Well, ladies and gentlemen, that fear happened to be, Harry Styles. If you don’t know who Harry Styles is, he’s actually never acted in a movie before. He’s done few things prior to “Dunkirk” in terms of acting, but ultimately, he hasn’t really done that much. What does he typically do? Well, if you are aware of the boy band, One Direction, Styles is actually a singer-songwriter for the band. I have NO INTEREST in One Direction, in fact I’m not a teenage girl who has posters of hunks in his room. I’m a teenage boy with posters of superheroes in his room. On the topic of teenage fangirls going into this movie, many of them, based on tweets I read, were looking forward to see Styles on the big screen. In fact, when they were watching this in the theater, apparently they thought to themselves, and this is, in writing, my very own Harry Styles fangirl impression: “OMG! GIVE THAT HUNKY HARRY ALL THE OSCARS! 😍💞” Based on this evidence before going to the theater, I honestly thought this was pure fangirling, although at the same time maybe they were complimenting his performance. I’m not insinuating every Harry Styles fangirl will like something just because Harry Styles is in it, maybe some do, I don’t know, but this did sound like pure fangirling. Now I will admit, I’m a fanboy in many aspects. I’m a fanboy of “Spider-Man,” “Star Wars,” “King of the Nerds,” Christopher Nolan, IMAX, JK Simmons, “Portal,” Howie Mandel, Curtis Armstrong, Robert Carradine, Gal Gadot, and many game shows. Although as a fanboy, believe it or not, I don’t automatically fully appreciate something just because there’s something specific attached to it. I might fully appreciate something if there’s something specific DONE RIGHT attached to it. What do I mean? For “Star Wars,” something I consider done right for example is the most recent film in the franchise, “Rogue One,” and something I consider wrong in the franchise is “The Phantom Menace.” For Gal Gadot, I think she’s sexy, I love her as Wonder Woman, and I will even say she partially saved “Batman v. Superman” from being a total catastrophe, although she was in the movie “Criminal” which came out in 2016, which was rather underwhelming, she was alright in it though.

Sticking with the original topic, how was Styles in this movie? He wasn’t bad at all, as far as his performance went, fangirls, this your warning to keep your cool, it didn’t stand out. I’m not complaining when I say that, but you also have to consider who else was cast in this movie. And I’m not saying they were better, OK, I actually am saying that, but that’s not my point. My point is that you have a lot of characters in this movie, and they were mostly white males with similar hairstyles. You may as well also consider the whole characterization thing I mentioned not long ago, the fact that Harry hasn’t done acting all that much, and performances across the board had many similarities. Besides, this movie revolved around men at war. By the way, out of all the Harry Styles look-a-likes in this movie, I gotta say Fionn Whitehead probably gave the best performance out of all of them. After seeing this movie though, I will say I wouldn’t mind seeing Harry Styles in more movies. His acting is certainly better than his singing. Then again, I’ll mention, I’M TEENAGE BOY, WHAT CAN I SAY? Although I gotta say there is a performance that stood out to me.

The guy on the left, Tom Glynn-Carney played a character in this film. It may be the red sweater talking, I don’t know, but I liked his performance. It felt really authentic, I felt like I was at a doctor’s office going into some medical procedure and the doctor said to me, “Don’t worry sir, you’ll be alright,” although in reality he’s about to shove some crap inside me I can’t even describe, and probably don’t even want to describe. I’m not saying that’s how his character was in the movie, it’s just what his character, performance-wise, reminded me of.

Since I’m bringing up fears I had going into this film on this post, I’ll bring up more. Another fear I had, is the fact that the film was PG-13. This wasn’t really a huge fear of mine, but it was still there. In films containing some sort of war such as “Saving Private Ryan” or “The Patriot,” you might expect some blood, therefore contributing to the R rating. Although then again “Lord of the Rings” has a lot of war in it and yet for what I recall that barely has any blood. In fact the extended edition of “Return of the King” is actually said to have the highest body count ever recorded in a movie. After seeing this movie, the sound, the effects, the atmosphere, and the performances all felt realistic. There wasn’t much blood, I did see some, but it wasn’t all that much and it wasn’t moving. By the way, if you watch this movie, look forward to the dogfights, seeing this in full frame IMAX from first person perspective is as the kids call it now, lit. I’ll even go as far as to say that these moments in first person are actually more fun to watch than the entirety of “Hardcore Henry,” and that movie was basically in first person from beginning to end!

Speaking of the film’s highlights, Hans Zimmer scored this film. If you ask me, it’s hard to choose a favorite movie composer, however, it is easy to say which movie was composed best out of all the ones I’ve seen. That to me, would be “Interstellar,” also directed by Christopher Nolan and composed by Hans Zimmer. Now this is the seventh project these two have worked on together, and yes, I’m also including “Man of Steel” even though Nolan didn’t direct it. He did write and produce it though. I’ve seen a lot of films these two have done and I’m impressed with a lot of their work. “Dunkirk’s” soundtrack, much like others I’ve heard from Zimmer, along with all the sound I heard in this movie, made my ears have orgasms! Is the music exactly hummable? I wouldn’t say so, however if I listen to it a few times, I might have it down. Although it was awesome nevertheless. This score also does something you might hear in the “Interstellar” and “Inception” scores. If you pay close attention when watching the movie or when listening to the soundtrack, you may hear ticking and tocking. It’s almost as if it’s saying that time is not on the side of the hero. Although when it comes to displaying time, “Interstellar” does that best out of these three scores, which is saying something since the “Inception” soundtrack has a song literally called “Time.”

One of my personal favorite one word movie quotes comes from “The Matrix,” and it’s Keanu Reeves’s character of Neo saying “Whoa.” And BOY was I uttering that throughout the movie. Although when I said “whoa,” it was more of a soft exclamation than a declaration. I mentioned I love how this movie was presented in terms of clarity and how it was shot, but I also love the sound. The first bullet that goes off in this movie, literally set me up for nonstop action and motivated me for what’s to come. The sound overall felt real, especially the bombs and planes. This is just a fraction of the incredible immersion I felt from this astoundingly audible and picture perfect film.

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In the end, I enjoyed the crap out of this movie. I don’t watch many war films, but this is one of those films, that was a visual experience. I’ve had many of these films which I came across throughout my lifetime. There’s “Interstellar” (YES, I’M MENTIONING IT AGAIN, I’M SORRY, IT’S THAT GOOD OF A MOVIE), “Mad Max: Fury Road,” “The Matrix,” “Kingsman: The Secret Service,” “Gravity,” “La La Land,” the entire “Lord of the Rings” saga, and “Terminator 2: Judgement Day.” There’s very little dialogue, you don’t really get to know the characters, and while many other movies or TV shows work because you get to know the characters, this movie works because you DON’T get to know the characters. The technical aspects in this movie AUTOMATICALLY make me want to run all the way back to the theater to see this again! This is one of the LOUDEST movies I’ve witnessed in my life! I want to buy the Blu-Ray, although if there’s a 4K edition I’ll probably snatch that. What else can I say except, Christopher Nolan has done it again! This is not my favorite flick from Nolan, but it is certainly some of his best work. I’m gonna give “Dunkirk” a 9/10. I’m giving this a 9 because this is a movie that I would HIGHLY recommend. Definite seal of approval from me! The characters aren’t developed, but I don’t care, because given the situations the characters are facing throughout the movie, it was enough for me to root for them. And I’ll say, this MIGHT, and I say MIGHT jump to a 10 later. It’ll probably depend on the movie’s replay value and if I pick up on any details I may have missed the first time I watched this movie, and part of me is willing to bet I did miss something. Also, PLEASE SEE THIS IN A THEATER IN THE LARGEST FORMAT POSSIBLE OR ON FILM. Don’t pirate this movie, don’t wait for Netflix, this film IS worth your money. Thanks for reading this review, as you can obviously tell, I really appreciated the movie, and right now I might put this in my top 5 best of the year. As far as upcoming reviews go, pretty soon I’m gonna try to see “Atomic Blonde” or “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.” Stay tuned for those reviews if I ever get around to them, and I hope I can get those out soon. …Wait a sec, I feel like I’m forgetting something… Oh right, that piece of crap. If you want me to see the horse’s ass I like to call “The Emoji Movie,” leave a comment with the hashtag #GOSCREWYOURSELFEMOJIMOVIE and while it’s not guaranteed I’ll see it, the chances of me seeing it will definitely increase the more users I see commenting. Leave a comment if that’s something that interests you.

Also, if you are interested in Christopher Nolan much like myself, or if you want to know my thoughts on his movies, be sure to check out my reviews for “Interstellar,” “Inception,” and “Insomnia.” The links are down below, check those out, and stay tuned for more reviews! I hope to see this movie again, hopefully in the theater, I know a theater close to my house is playing this in 70mm film and another is playing it in IMAX laser, we’ll see what happens! Scene Before is your click to the flicks!

“INCEPTION” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2017/07/19/inception-2010-beyond-your-wildest-dreams/

“INSOMNIA” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2017/07/11/insomnia-2002-a-movie-thats-better-the-second-time-watching-it/

“INTERSTELLAR” REVIEW: https://scenebefore.wordpress.com/2017/07/04/interstellar-a-beautiful-intense-breathtaking-brilliant-sci-fi-marvel/