REVIEW: Captain America: Civil War

Photo: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Photo: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Chris Luckett

When The Avengers came out in 2012, it seemed like the ultimate climax of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Of course, it was simply the climax to the first act of what would ultimately be three (or four) phases, each with their own Avengers capper.

The worry that came with that, particularly after the behemoth scale of The Avengers, was… How could Marvel hope to top (or even just equal) a supergroup movie with more standalone pictures hinged on individual superheroes, without just creating the impression of the franchise just spinning its wheels?

Marvel being the Pixar it currently is, they pulled it off. Not only that, but despite the fact The Avengers: Age of Ultron proved to be even better than The Avengers, it was outdone by Captain America: The Winter Soldier — the best movie Marvel had yet made, despite it being a sequel to the worst they’d made.

And that was before a superhero war broke out. Continue reading

REVIEW: The Avengers: Age of Ultron

Photo: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Photo: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Chris Luckett

Cinema has a long, storied history of computers running amok. From 2001: A Space Odyssey and Blade Runner to the Terminator and Matrix series, intelligent machines have become the new evolution of Frankenstein’s Monster.

The Avengers: Age of Ultron appears on the surface to be yet another superhero juggernaut, but what separates it from its Marvel brethren — and what elevates it above most of them — is that the villain isn’t a malevolent alien or a possessed scientist, but an artificially intelligent monster of our heroes’ own creation. Even Earth’s mightiest heroes aren’t invulnerable to hubris.

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REVIEW: Godzilla (2014)

Photo: Warner Bros.

Photo: Warner Bros.

Chris Luckett

The character of Godzilla has appeared in 42 movies over the last sixty years, and most of them have been terrible. Some point to 1969’s Godzilla’s Revenge as the low-point of the series while younger moviegoers cite the 1998 reboot Godzilla as the character’s worst film, but most tend to agree the “King of the Monsters” was at his best and most fearsome in the 1954 Japanese original, Gojira.

Gareth Edwards, director of the excellent 2010 movie Monsters, here tries his best to satisfy both the fans of the long-running series and audience members unfamiliar with the monster beyond its cultural parody value. He mostly succeeds.

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