How to Train Your Dragon 2: Crying over an animated dragon

Film

How to Train Your Dragon 2

A few weeks later than planned, How to Train Your Dragon 2 was finally seen in the cinema. FINALLY. Happy to say, it was worth the wait. However, just wished we were able to see it at the “nice” cinema.

With How to Train Your Dragon 2 being a 3D film too, the “nice” cinema where we saw X-Men: Days of Future Past, was only doing 3D showings. Naive that we were, we just expected all the cinemas to be as lovely as that place.

100 movies: Reign of Fire

100 movies of 2012

Every year I set myself a target, usually of about 100, of films to watch. These are new films. Not new, new films. But films that are new to me. Any time I’ve seen a new one, I post a bit of a brain dump of my thoughts on the film here. Enjoy!

Reign of FireReign of Fire (04/03/12)

A brood of fire-breathing dragons emerges from the earth and begins setting fire to everything, establishing dominance over the planet.

In the post apocalyptic world people look sweaty, dirty and apparently have access to some amazing gyms/personal trainers. Not that I should be complaining about the last part.

Reign of Fire’s post apocalyptic dragon filled world makes for a decent enough film. Christian Bale’s Quinn is someone I could get behind. Doing whatever he could do to survive and help the survival of his community. Sure, it’s not exactly and original character, but I am pretty sure that is this film’s main concern.

The only bit I did have a bit of annoyance with, was when the Americans arrived to save the British from their dragon problem. Eyes roll into the far, far back of the head. Though, I was glad when that worked out ‘really well’ for them!

The dragons looked great. The film itself looked pretty damn good too. I’ll never get old of seeing a completely broke down London. Poor Big Ben – he never catches a break.

Reign of Fire was better than I was expecting. I went in with pretty low hopes, so perhaps that’s why I enjoyed it a fair bit. Overall, an engaging little post-apocalyptic, sci-fi action film. With dragons.
Rating: 3/5

Read on to see all the films watched this year…

120+ Movies: Getting Back on Track

120+ Movies of 2011

The Hangover Part IIThe Hangover Part II (27/05/11)

Right after the bachelor party in Las Vegas, Phil, Stu, Alan, and Doug jet to Thailand for Stu’s wedding. Stu’s plan for a subdued pre-wedding brunch, however, goes seriously awry.

Going into this film I knew what I was expecting – more of what was in the first film and then some. So this film ticked that box well enough. It pretty much stuck to the same formula as the first film. Well, I think it treated the first film as a template to the second. Things almost happened exactly the same way as they did in the first with different variables. Some ludeness was upped. The amount of stupidity from Alan was upped, which did grate on my slightly.

Though I laughed throughout most of the film. There was plenty of stupidity. It’s not as good as the first one, because the first one set all the rules and this second film has stuck to the rules like glue. I probably won’t be buying this when it gets released on blu-ray/DVD, but it was a fun ride. Marginally disappointed in that this could have been one hell of an even funnier film given the talent.
Rating: 3/5

How to Train Your DragonHow to Train Your Dragon (28/05/11)

A hapless young Viking who aspires to hunt dragons becomes the unlikely friend of a young dragon himself, and learns there may be more to the creatures than he assumed.

Now this is a surprisingly good film! It’s a simple story. Young boy trying to find his place. Forms unlikely friendship. Everyone learns a vital lesson by the end of the film. But it’s so nicely told with some equally touching moments and brilliantly funny parts!

The bonding scene between Hiccup and Toothless got me to tears in record time, thanks to a really beautiful score by John Powell.

Think this is my favourite animated film from Dreamworks. It had some real heart to it, which I find other Dreamworks animated films just don’t have. I’m happy there’s a sequel, but I hope they get things right again and don’t mess with a great formula. Just maybe improve it slightly.
Rating: 4/5

ZodiacZodiac (28/05/11)

A San Francisco cartoonist becomes an amateur detective obsessed with tracking down the Zodiac killer.

This is what I call a ‘heavy’ film. My brain hurt a lot after finishing with it. Not to mention left feeling a little bit unsatisfied. Well, that was my initial feeling after I’d finished watching the film. Looking back on it, how on earth could it have ended any other way.

Brilliant performances from all the cast in the film. The Zodiac killer himself terrified me. More-so due to the fact that he was/is real. Sends a shiver down my spine.

Loved the look of San Francisco and the colour tones in the film.A very beautiful looking film as well as packing a lot of substance.
Rating: 4/5

Up in the AirUp in the Air (30/05/11)

With a job that has him traveling around the country firing people, Ryan Bingham leads an empty life out of a suitcase, until his company does the unexpected: ground him.

My god, it took me so long to finally watch this film! But I’ve seen it now, so stop looking at me that way.

Brilliant film. Great dialog. Amazing cast. The ending of the film did not go where I was expecting it to go. I was expecting a happy ending, which I guess it was in a way.

I adored the opening sequence of the film and all of the aerial shots in the film. They were beautiful! I want to make a snapshot of one of them and put it on my desktop.
5/5

Read on to see the entire list of movies seen this year so far:

100 movies: 3 more films down

100 movies of 2010

Wonder if I can hit 120 films before the year’s out….

A Serious ManA Serious Man (19/11/10)
Coen brothers do good on another film. Loved A Serious Man. I was a little confused at the beginning – I really had no clue what was going on. But by the end I think I understood the purpose of that little scene. More than once I found myself laughing at various bits in the film. Not to sound terribly racist, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a film about the Jewish culture before. A very smart little film that kept me watching and had me entertained.
Rating: 4/5

Away We GoAway We Go (20/11/10)
I think I liked this film. Honestly I can only just remember watching it. Sadly, it was fairly forgettable. It’s a really sweet story about a couple trying to figure out where they want to be, physically and spiritually. I felt a bit bored and frustrated by Burt and Verona’s aimless meanderings. I could see where they were going, but the journey didn’t interest me. All the different types of parenting felt a little too obvious. Nice film, glad I saw it, but wouldn’t jump to see it again.
Rating: 2/5

Law Abiding CitizenLaw Abiding Citizen (20/11/10)
I think the only way to describe this film is a cross between the Saw movies and TV’s Dexter. A law-abiding citizen, played by Gerard Butler, is bent on revenge after his family are killed during a home invasion. But he’s no ordinary revenge seeking murderer. Much like Saw’s Jigsaw and Dexter, he’s educated himself on the best ways to get his revenge on those that wronged him. There’s only really one way this film could have ended and it did just that. However along the way I wasn’t hooked into the film whatsoever. Jamie Foxx played a character who I couldn’t care much for and so struggled when I was meant to be on his side of the story. Gerard Butler did well enough in his role, but just failed to capture my imagination. This law-abiding citizen is no match for either Jigsaw or Dexter.
Rating: 2/5

Read on to see the entire list of the movies I’ve seen this year.

100 movies: Action junkie

100 movies of 2010

The Expendables (13/08/10)
Awesome film. Don’t look at me like that. I loved it. It was fun, entertaining, funny and had plenty in it to keep me occupied. The pacing was a little slow in the beginning, but once it got going the movie sped by really very quickly. Loved some of the little throwbacks to some of the action films some of the cast were known for. Best one being Dolph’s scene which was straight out of Universal Soldier! I really am amazed at the cast in this film. I’m not a fan of Jason Statham, Dolph or Jet-Li, but they really worked well in this film. I didn’t roll my eyes when any of them were onscreen.

There’s enough explosions in this film for their to be a shortage of explosives. I was thinking that there was an awful lot of fire in the film!

The plot’s not the most inventive, but it really didn’t need to be. There were plenty of good jokes. Sure Stallone looked permanently shocked, with his eyebrows at the top of his forehead permanently, but he wasn’t bad. He did good here.
Rating: 4/5

Gamer (14/08/10)
I’m guessing this film was trying to same something important about people being slaves to the system. It almost did it, but I got distracted by the blindingly bad action sequences. Well they weren’t bad, but they were made to look more frenetic than they were and my eyes started hurting. I don’t mind a bit of shaky cam, I loved it in the Bourne films, but this was ridiculous. Michael C. Hall was very un-Dexter like. There were a few faces that were recognisable, Alison Lohman, Sam Witwer and I reckon there must have been a fan of Psych somewhere in the production staff when I saw James Roday and Maggie Lawson together!

It wasn’t a great film. Just very eh with the occassional ‘OH!’ when I recognised certain cast members.
Rating: 2/5

Read more to see the full list of movies I’ve seen so far this year.