Saturday, January 7, 2017

Nothing Will Ever Be the Same Again, Again! (2016 review, part 2)

via Birth Death Movies

I am not precisely one to make a big deal out of going to see movies, yet I wound up at the cinema quite a few times in 2016. The most fun I had in 2016 was seeing Captain America: Civil War, but there were other highlights; Doctor Strange was good, albeit familiar; Star Trek: Beyond proved to the best of the Star Trek reboot films while my favourite, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan was re-released to celebrate the franchise's 50th anniversary; I checked out Jason Bourne and found it unfortunately inferior to Matt Damon's earlier films; Shin Godzilla took the notorious Godzilla back to his roots in a very welcome piece about bureaucracy and Japan's complicated history with nuclear energy; finally, Rogue One was a decent but very problematic Star Wars film which I felt worked in spite of all its plotting problems.

Thanks to Netflix, I delved into quite a lot of other pictures which were brand-new last year; highlights of those included Zootopia, which proved to contain a very effective message about proving oneself and combatting personal prejudices; For the Love of Spock, Adam Nimoy's documentary tribute to his father, centered on Leonard Nimoy's performance as Spock; Green Room, an extremely intense thriller about a punk band trapped inside a Neo-Nazi bar; The Legend of Tarzan was surprisingly good, delving into a chapter of real African history which I was already interested in; I watched the horror mockumentary They're Watching primarily because its creator was Micah Ian Wright, a controversial comic book creator; I saw Deadpool and concluded "I can see how someone else would find this funny." Deadpool had the potential to be something different but its claim to be something other than a typical super hero movie was an exaggeration - it's just another super hero, only with nasty language.

Netflix also led me to some fine documentaries, with Hot Coffee discussing the infamous coffee lawsuit at McDonald's and how it was perceived as a frivolous lawsuit when, in actuality, it was a legitimate case; Winter on Fire told of the toppling of the Ukraine government and was very informative. Some other good films included the Disney movie Inside Out and the excellent horror adaptation Kwaidan. But the best film I saw for the first time in 2016 was Creed, the new sequel to Rocky, which I found captivating in part because it paid its dues to the Rocky franchise while simultaneously working hard to develop its own identity.

Tomorrow: Books!

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