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: Li'l Duce's Reviews Palace  ( 296561 )
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« #1050 : November 14, 2022, 03:46:18 AM »

The Specialist (1994) I had missed this one, can't say why. Probably because of the hype at the time about Stone. I was wrong, if that was the case: Stone is in fact one of the assets of the flick, showing lots of skin in a scene with Stallone with background music by John Barry which makes it tolerable. It starts very badly (the opening scene is cheap) but it gets better and better as Stallone starts bombing the murderers of Stone's parents. Yes, there are some inconsistencies like Stone having reached her thrities while the assassins (Roberts, especially) have not grown old a bit. Also, that Roberts does not try and easiiy succeed in discovering Stone's identity is not credible. But from the said moment the action becomes gripping and never let's go. I must admit I never appreciated Woods  playing the villain ever since OUTIA: he just hasn't got the looks and he tries to make up for it by overacting. But still is 7-8/10   


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« #1051 : November 20, 2022, 02:49:16 AM »

X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019) The problem with this one is, even more than the two final combat scenes, one between the two factions of mutants and the other with mutants vs. aliens, both shot in the dark, the fact that the aliens are terrible only in the short scenes when they deal with defenceless humans. So one doesn't know what kind of power they have that might be a threat to the mutants. 6/10


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« #1052 : November 20, 2022, 10:53:48 AM »

Avengers: Infinity War (2018)  I see that at IMDB they agree with me; it's better than Endgame and one of the best Marvel. The pace is fast, action scenes effective and  dialogues, sentimental relationship and everything that slows down the story disposed of fast. 8/10


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« #1053 : November 20, 2022, 02:58:12 PM »

Captain Marvel (2019) At IMDB some say that this starts slowly and then acquires momentum. For me is the other way round: as many other movie based on the hero who doesn't remember the past and what the plot is all about, this is interesting in the first part and loses speed in the second half.  6-7/10 because of Jackson as an early Fury.


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« #1054 : November 20, 2022, 09:28:31 PM »

Thor: The Dark World (2013)  This one has got the London fight which is good. I was about to give it a 7/10 but the unexpected finale raise it to 7-8/10.


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« #1055 : November 22, 2022, 09:09:43 AM »

The Split (1968) Whoever made the casting should have won an Oscar: it was just incredible. The problem is with Jim Brown: he was not an actor and it shows, alas. And then, it's a B movie and it shows but it must be seen not only because it's a Parker movie but because of the 2-3 actors involved who will be Stars 3-4 years later. And then: Carroll is simply the '60's Lena Horneand Harris is playing against type. 6/10 


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« #1056 : November 22, 2022, 02:53:17 PM »

Thor: Ragnarok (2017) It is chromatically attractive but only the fight in the arena between Thor and Hulk is notable, the rest is the usual fare. 6/10


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« #1057 : November 23, 2022, 01:14:53 AM »

Mary Poppins Returns  (2018) I didn't expect much musically: the original had the best score for any Disney movie ever, in the same league as some of the best Broadway musicals: hard to get even near. Songs were just run-of-the-mill stuff, thank God in line with classic american song tradition instead of some rap or rock stuff: at least the fact that the movie is set in the 30's of last century provided a stop to that insult. But the unexpected minus came from casting: only 1 out of the 4 leads is right for the (little) part: the other three just shouldn't be there. Emily Mortimer looks pretty and I can imagine she's an adult Jane Banks. But the fella playing her brother, apart from not looking like an adult Michael Banks if you're familiar with the original, just doesn't look right for the part: lomg-haired and big mustached and too nervous acting: it just doen't rhyme with the character. So we come to the substitute for the Van Dyke part, here a street-lighter. In the movie we are told 2 or 3 times that he's "beautiful": uh? He's anonymous at best and thee is not a single element to make him remarkable. How he ended up in business is a mystery. And finally Mary. To play this character you must have a girl who looks pretty, with delicate, gentle features as she must look funny while playing an apparently strict nanny. Emily Blunt looks like a Swiss governess, she hasn't got a particularly pretty face, she's tall and strong looking like a British guard: so all the point of the character gets lost. So one should be left with the CGE. Nothing special there, too. Actually, when you compare the sequence of the music hall with the one of street picture in the original (both adopting the humans with drawn characters) you easily realize how much of inventiveness in the drawings of the characters was there. Meryl Streep (an actress I have always detested) has been assigned the weakest number and she does nothing to elevate it. Van Dyke and Lansbury inject a small touch of vitality in the scheme and the last number, the one with the balloons is  visually superior to the Let's Fly a Kite in the original as it probably is the  Street-Lighters choreography compared to the Step in Time one: but musically those numbers were  of another class, of course. 6/10


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« #1058 : December 04, 2022, 11:10:20 AM »

The Score (2001) I had seen it twice but this time in the original. One of the best thriller of the new millennium, though  how the score is planned is hard to digest (how can the hitters be sure that security isn't gonna check at once if there's anything wrong in the basement as soon as the cameras show malfunctions?). And I always liked the finale. 7-8/10


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« #1059 : December 06, 2022, 03:28:08 PM »

Conan the Barbarian (2011) I stepped into the dvd (both in 2d and 3d) and thought it was some kind of cheap production like those italian ridiculous sf flicks that came out after Star Wars. I was wrong: this has got good production values, though it has nothing on the stars side. But the villains (father and daughter) are good. The problem lies, predictably, with the lead: somebody to sub for Schwarzenegger hasn't come out yet. But still I think that somebody more muscularly exaggerated than the guy playing Conan might have been found. This guy is not even a good actor, so his casting is a mystery. Still I give this movie (lambasted at IMDB) a full 7/10. Had a credible lead been picked up I would have given it a 8/10: it is action packed from start to finish, the fight scenes themselves remind me of the 30's pulp more than the Milius movie did.     


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« #1060 : December 09, 2022, 01:16:53 AM »

Alien vs. Predator (2004) I thought I had reviewed it but apparently didn't. It is more based on effects than suspense and so after you know what is all about  it becomes a bit boring. I remembered it as a better movie. 6/10


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« #1061 : December 09, 2022, 04:03:45 AM »

Aliens vs Predator - Requiem (2007) Better than the first as it plays a bit more on suspense and less on fights. 6-7/10


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« #1062 : December 11, 2022, 10:55:28 PM »

First Knight (1995) Not quite convincing rehash of the King Arthur-Lancelot-Guinevere story. I saw it because of Connery, of course. The action scenes have some novelty (the small crossbows, the gauntlet, the photographic effect of the night cavalry charge) but it is mostly centered on the sentimental side of the story. The Holdsmith's OST is annoying. 6/10


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« #1063 : December 14, 2022, 05:58:55 AM »

Elektra (2005)  This was quite interesting at the start, but in the end disappointing. The idea of a female professional killer was good, but the problem is that many facets of the story remain unexplained (why is the Hand looking for the teen? they want to kill her at the start but then they want to capture her. And what is Stamp's role? And I could go on and on). Not having read the comics these are bound to remain unexplained questions. 5/10


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« #1064 : December 14, 2022, 01:46:19 PM »

Black Panther(2018)  The only scene worth mentioning is the chase in South Korea. The rest sees little and not impressive action and too many dialogues. 5/10



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