Spider-Man: No Way Home: A Detailed Review (Spoilers)

BEWARE OF SPOILERS AHEAD!!!

10/10

A brief introduction, I viewed this film on Dec 16 at the earliest IMAX screening. Spider-Man: No Way Home is going to be in my top 3 films of 2021, having seen the trailers near the end of Oct – mid-Nov, the anticipation for the film was to die for. In honor of keeping articles short, I will place all my thoughts into a couple of paragraphs.

Overview

Now, Spider-Man (2002) has been one of the oldest comic book movies that I’ve seen when it first came out [in 2002] with the first iteration played by Tobey Maguire. Through the years we received two other actors to play this character, Andrew Garfield and Tom Holland. The recent one is Tom Holland, and although he has received criticism for the way he has been made to portray this character in his two movies, excluding this one, it definitely had its different directions than the other ones, but Spider-Man: No Way Home really takes the cake!

This film does an incredible job at mixing the tones that the other franchises had to them, and as the trailer below holds no secrets the villains that returned also bring their respective film’s way of moving the story along. It’s a beautifully orchestrated MCU entry that doesn’t feel like an MCU film aside from its cheesy jokes which aren’t necessarily bad. Tom Holland really steps his game up during this film and we can see a sudden change from the boyish charm of the other two films [Homecoming and Far From Home] to this new more mature interpretation, which leaves an incredible want to see how his story continues. Not to mention, the return of Alfred Molina as Doc Oc and Willem Defoe as Green Goblin, who both absolutely killed their role once again putting on one last show before they say an official goodbye to reprising their roles.

Review

Now, as I mentioned this is a film that doesn’t hide its big bad. Having it is clear that it has both Tobey Maguire villains Doctor Octopus (Alfred Molina) and Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe) as well as Andrew Garfield’s Electro (Jamie Foxx) and Lizard (Rhys Ifans). It’s clear that the film will have the cross-over of the year, even updated to beating Avengers Endgame‘s crossover event.

As I mentioned, Tom Holland crushed his role in this film not just being a good Spider-Man and Peter Parker, but going above and beyond at performing his character’s development.

Tom’s rendition of the hero has always had its criticism with the fans as being only a good hero because of Tony Stark’s tech, but in this film, he shows he is more than that. Growing up from his kid-like attitude and wishful thinking, we see his maturity multiply by the end of the film. A major part that adds to this is because of his Aunt May dying, but before doing so receiving the speech of “With great power comes great responsibility.” Not to mention, meeting the two other legendary Spider-Men points of view and help of guidance. The sudden change needed to be molded to make the toughest choices, and with that Tom’s character needed to do the adult and difficult decisions. His performance in this film all throughout really leaves me teared up to the brim of emotions, and honestly leaves an insatiable desire to see more of him as Spider-Man on the big screen.

Now, we can’t forget to talk about the big reveal I mentioned before, yes, all three Spider-Men come together near the end to fight the big bad’s and although they aren’t on the screen for the entire film, their impact is astronomical. Hearing the crowd cheer for this one wasn’t as bad as other times, as I can genuinely agree with the reactions. It was a nice and warm feeling to have these two other Spider-Men be on screen one last time as the character really was a sight for sore eyes and an amazing way to have closure.

Now, we can’t forget about its villains, having five characters back but only three actually performing. Alfred Molina reprised his role as Doc Oc, Willem Dafoe returned as Green Goblin, and Jamie Foxx played Electro once again. These three come back with arms up ready to throw you out of the ring. Their performance took your breath away when they had screen time, and each in their own ways of outdoing their last acting chops from previous films.

Alfred Molina gives his all to give the best as Doc Oc even coming back to his pre-arm self as sort of an anti-hero or at the very least becoming a hero at the end, in a way making amends just like he did in Spider-Man 2. Jamie Fox even came back as a better version of Electro than in his time in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, although a little underwhelming to say the least as his character seemed not like the one he played in the original manner, which isn’t bad just takes out a sense of knowing who this guy was in his world. Going over to Willem Dafoe’s performance as Green Goblin, which I have to say was my favorite part of the film. His ability to switch between Norman Osborn and Green Goblin is uncanny and honestly makes me question if he does have another personality like the Goblin on screen. By far the one part that shocked me the most is when Peter’s sense was alerting him of the oncoming trouble and Green Goblin taking over and “coming out to play” only to change his facial expression in front of Peter.

Now to keep this article short, I will say that these villains made it a blast to watch the film and made Peter change with so many deaths and all the suffering they brought.

All in all, the film is a solid 10/10 for me and I imagine for you and others as well. I’ll definitely go and see it once again in IMAX before I am able to preorder my copy of the film. I hope we are all able to see more of Tom Holland as Spider-Man in the future as this film was an incredible stepping stone for his career. Nonetheless, let me know what you thought about the film in the comments as there is still much to talk about that I didn’t include on here. Check the film out now and let me know what you think, till next time peace.

Eternals: A Detailed Review

Eternals: A New Perspective outside of the Avengers

A New Direction with the Upcoming Phase

9/10

Although I am late to the media coverage party for Eternals it’s still a great piece of hero film to talk about. Although with time and a good amount of articles being out we can clearly see that most of the critics and audiences lean towards this film not being favorable, that isn’t the case for this article. Now, this isn’t biased writing on the contrary I like to speak on other qualities than the industry’s way of working. As you the reader know, I don’t like to talk about whether the film is a film in the likes of comparing it to a pre-aged sense of the field, I write with pure intentions of mentioning whether a film is good in its storytelling and whether it’s a film to be enjoyed by all.

With that being said, Eternals matches everything one can look for in a film, it’s entertaining, has its classic Marvel comedy bits, action, and does an outstanding job at telling a story!

Overview

With most MCU films we can see a repetitive structure that they use in their films and although it’s repetitive it’s still loved by many, which is why many still come back for more; not to mention how it’s world-building and connecting its films piece by piece. Now, Eternals takes a different approach, taking into account that its main cast is filled with diverse characters some being in the LGBTQ+ community, different ethnicities, including a hearing-impaired heroine, and having its lead be an Asian woman, one would be perceptive to say that some of the criticisms in articles are made from biased perspectives. The story told goes above and beyond and its pacing is well made having the film’s run time of 2 hrs and 37 mins feel nothing short of an hour and 30 mins at most. The incredible cast brings their characters to life and honestly one leaves not only having a favorite of the 10 but also wanting to see more. It’s a highly enjoyable watch and I would recommend it to anyone wanting to look for a Friday night watch.

REview

A Quick Word for “Eternals”

When the first trailer came out back near mid-September, we obtained only a handful of trailers, teasers, or articles on the MCU project. Although it wasn’t marketed as much as other major films, the pieces and glimpses we got were enough to amaze me as well as others who watched the trailers. And after viewing it on the first release, it didn’t disappoint!

Having such a range of actors was definitely a beauty to see having Gemma Chan, who played Sersi, be the main protagonist and she killed her performance, although having seen her in Crazy Rich Asians I’d expect nothing more than incredible acting. Not to mention her amazing co-stars, having a deaf actress on-screen was phenomenal and Lauren Ridloff, who played Makkari, was a star in her own hitting great comedy and romantic notes all while doing ASL and simple mannerisms. We also have Lia McHugh, who although only has a handful of films in her portfolio, plays Sprite amazingly well and held her own bringing the audience’s emotions to turnover, which I’d say is always a win when playing characters who are supposed to make the audience have a certain grudge for their actions. We also bring our attention to Don Lee, who plays Gilgamesh, who is also making his debut in American made films (i.e Hollywood). Not to say he isn’t a star on his own, as he’s been in many great films, his most recognizable for American audiences would be his role in Train to Busan. Now I’m not forgetting the amazing talent that is Angelina Jolie, Kumeil Nanjiani, Salma Hayek, Brian Tyree Henry, and Richard Madden.

They’re all doing wonderful and emotional performances and if I wasn’t against writing 10pg school papers, I would include my love for each character and how their talent brought them to life on the big screen in Eternals. But to save time and your attention I’ll move on to my last points.

I know for many people they were expecting a typical MCU film when sitting in their theater seats, but that wasn’t the case for how this film played out. Chloé Zhao, who directed this film, does an out-of-the-norm move for Marvel and makes this film have a little more depth, having every character have a deeper story than just their powers or coolness. Chloé does an amazing job at showcasing the characters of the film and overall story, going beyond the hero’s journey route. Having especially Gemma Chan’s character, Sersi, ask questions about our own values, self-worth, and capabilities while asking philosophical questions about “God” and free will. Now, I know this isn’t the take that everyone got when watching but it sure is something I picked up, as well as it amplified my experience.

There are controversies that floated around articles, even some having clear biased opinions on the film based on prejudices of their beliefs, but this isn’t the article for that.

Now to wrap it up, this film is a great piece to watch and keeps its viewers entertained even if it isn’t their first watch. Its action, story, and talent performance is all to die for and my respect for Chloé Zhao increased by going out of the box with how she chose to direct this film. Now, I’m not saying there aren’t negatives, at the very least the inclusion of the evolved Deviant not having much use to the overall story, that is unless they continue it in future works. Aside from that, I give this film a solid 9/10, but don’t just take my word for it watch it yourself as “Eternals” comes out on Dec 24th, 2021. Give it another watch and let me know what you think. Till next time, peace.

52nd Nashville Film Festival: Feature Film Capsules

52nd NFF (2021) Capsule Feature Film Reviews: Part 1

The 2021 Nashville Film Festival is coming to an end, and as to no surprise it has been an incredible experience; and I was only at the virtual event, imagine the in person experience. I want to thank the Nashville Film Festival committee for allowing myself and The Nerd Corps to join it, and although it hasn’t ended yet it’s still a grateful thanks. I’ll write an overall review of the event when it ends but I want to leave a couple of capsule reviews early for our viewers so they start to be interested in these upcoming films.

Now if you are not familiar with what a capsule review is it’s simple; it’s about a paragraphs worth of my opinion on certain films I’ve seen in the event without spoilers, using too much detail, etc. These are private/ payed for events and as a press visitor I am not allowed to speak of them in the forms mentioned above. Now on to these films!

Courtesy of NFF

The Murder Podcast

Directed and written by William Bagley, this isn’t what I expected looking at the name but it was not the worst thing I’ve seen. Its comedic tones were wacky and its supernatural wasn’t a Blumhouse production, but that isn’t a problem it just goes to show to never judge a book by its cover or synopsis. As I mentioned, the comedic tone was wacky but it works in favor of what I believe was meant by William and the overall film. It honestly reminded me of the older live action Nickelodeon movies I used to watch or even an AwesomenessTV film. Now it’s no jab, although it’s not my cup of tea it did give me a handful of laughs and not to forget it did have some great shots in the film.

The Murder Podcast = 1.5/5 Stars

Courtesy of NFF

7 Days

Directed by Roshan Sethi and written by Roshan Sethi and Karan Soni. Overall being the second film I watched I loved every aspect of it, not to mention the two main actor/actress duo. With an oversimplified synopsis by myself, it’s a film dealing with two characters being stuck together for 7 days with the COVID-19 lockdown at its peak start and everything about it works. The writing is amazing and the execution by the talents were 10 out of 10 giving this a romance drama, not the usual romantic comedy. The film is heart warming and I’ll be watching it again whenever it becomes available to the public.

7 Days = 5/5 Stars

Courtesy of NFF

Poser

Directed by Ori Segev & Noah Dixon and written by Noah Dixon. At first glance and viewing you would think this film was made under A24, but that isn’t the case. The cinematography is beautiful and incredible and like I said I’m surprised it isn’t a A24 film or a Neon film, as the pacing, lighting, frames, and story reminds me very much of them. One could say it’s even incredibly artistic or artisan for films with its use of color and lighting and the sound design works well to give more feel to the film. It’s just such a beautiful piece of art and I enjoyed my time watching and will probably rewatch in the future if possible.

Poser = 5/5 Stars

Courtesy of NFF

See You Then

Directed by Mari Walker and written by Kristen Uno and Mari Walker. The film tells a story of the characters without telling you a narrative of for either character, giving subtle nods at what each meant. Although the biggest was making sure you knew one character had gone through a transition, it gives insight into the Trans community which is lovely to see. The music and sound design is soothing to say the least but overall the story and the film itself reminded me of the Before Trilogy. The way the story is told isn’t all new but that doesn’t mean the story itself isn’t new. Although its pacing was like the said trilogy above, instead of leaving for hope and romance, this film works as if oil was left boiling and nearing the climax someone threw a cup of cold water in the pot, causing a huge spiraling fire. Nonetheless, it was a wonderful watch and although it felt a bit slow at times it was enjoyable.

See You Then = 4/5 Stars

Courtesy of NFF

Ludi

Directed by Edson Jean and written by Edson Jean and Joshua Jean-Baptiste. The story is well written along with the tone and leading ending gave way to something we don’t see much of in film, the telling of the Latin culture coming to look for a “better” life in the US. Although some scenes felt like it was meant for a film, the writing wasn’t bad at all and its comedic timing and sass was nice to see. Its pacing did seem to fall off at times but what I believe to be the use of this was to give emphasis to the ending and character development. I was surprised to have it capture so many things immigrants come here to find only finding hardships most of the time and it was nice to see it shown to us, the viewers.

Ludi = 4/5 Stars

Courtesy of NFF

Hard Luck Love SOng

Directed by Justin Corsbie and written by Justin Corsbie and Craig Ugoretz. The film is nicely paced for its 1 hour and 40 minute runtime, and it tells a story without telling it directly to the viewers about the characters. Its nice tones and the main protagonist’s cheerful and nice personality sets up for a lovable character with a semi mysterious past. The music and its sound design is also a major help in the story telling and fits incredibly well to say the least. Although it’s nothing out of the ordinary realm it’s definitely a film for anyone wanting or looking for something new to watch once it goes to the public.

Hard Luck Love Song = 4.5/ 5 Stars

Venom: Let There Be Carnage: A Detailed Review

Let There be carnage: And Carnage there Shall

There is no secret that Venom was disliked by many fans of the character and the same goes for its sequel, which isn’t being welcomed with open arms. Many I questioned if they were going to go see it confidently told me if they were it was because of work, unlike myself who just wanted to see this sequel.

If you haven’t noticed in my other articles by now my taste in films are very different than the norm, liking what most people would call “trash.”

I have no problem admitting that this film wasn’t the best, even concluding that it falls under its predecessor, but I can also say that I enjoyed certain aspects of the film.

Overview

Venom: Let There be Carnage is a sequel that was overall disliked before it even came out, there’s no running from a preset destiny. Overall the film’s run time played against it having it feel rushed in certain acts and having the characters not go through a proper growth pattern. Andy Serkis had a good vision having certain scenes feel like a cheesy comic panel, which isn’t bad in my opinion, but having certain characters be too over the top gave out. I honestly can say it wasn’t a good rendition but I also don’t want to say that it wasn’t entertaining, as I enjoyed the overall time I spent watching the film. But it’ll ultimately comes down to you the viewer to decide if you are going because you want an accurate depiction of the characters or if you simply want to be entertained for an hour and a half.

Review

Overall I’ll keep this review short and spoiler free. Serkis from what I saw and understood, wanted to depict Eddie Brock and Venom, played by Tom Hardy, to be a sort of comedic anti hero. Similar to Deadpool they wanted to bring a joking relationship between the two and I don’t mind it at all, but it honestly doesn’t play well with such a short run time being about 30 minutes shorter than the first film. There were many scenes that had great potential showing the characters attachment to each other but the necessary movement forward in the film failed to provide such views into their relationship.

I personally feel if it wasn’t cut short, these characters could have had a greater opportunity to be fleshed out. On the other hand, Cletus Kasady played by Woody Harrelson did a good job at showing the psychopathic killer in a live action atmosphere. We all know how his love for murder and blood is what makes his symbiote attracted to him and Carnage’s hatred feeds off of this satisfaction of chaos and that can be shown in many parts of the film. Not to mention the incredible character design and the sound design which gave me chills when I first heard his screech in theaters. Although in this film there isn’t a bond between the both like in the comics it shows a lot for his character and his actions, which you can clearly see if you watch till the end.

Naomie Harris also does an incredible job at portraying Shriek, now although she doesn’t have a symbiote in this film like the comic counterpart, I thoroughly enjoyed her performance. Although without having spoilers we may be in for a Shriek variant in the next film, although I can’t say for sure if it will happen. Not to mention having the mid credits makes it worth the viewing of the entire film, which was a BIG surprise for fans all around.

Now before I go in a train of confusion, I’ll keep it short. Venom: Let There be Carnage wasn’t a film that will obtain a nomination for an award but it does a good job at keeping me entertained. This is my own opinion though, and I understand majority rules against such expressed opinion but if you enjoyed the first one then you may enjoy this one as well. Granted I want to hear others’ opinions before I would give a full spoiler included talk, but for now check it out if you want, and let me know what you think in the comments. Till next time, peace.

Exilium Series: A Spoiler Free Review

Exilium Series: A new Adventure for readers

Have you ever seen Extinction starring Michael Peña on Netflix? If you haven’t it tells the story of a man trying to save his family from an alien invasion only to find out a devastating truth about him, his world, and the said invaders.

This is what the Exilium comic series reminds me of with so much more, having the Earth have alien refugees, human allies and racists, invaders attacking Earth and truths unfolding to a surprise ending. Mr. Slabak and the others who helped envision this story that really brought out a new world and as a comic book geek I really enjoyed something new.

Now this is a short comic book series and as I was reading I kept forgetting so I was left wanting more at the end of every panel.

Now this will be a short and spoiler free review, as Exilium is working on a season 2.

As I mentioned I’m a big comic book geek and have my very own yet small collection, and it’s not very often I add items especially if i didn’t like them, but I hope that I one day find a collection book of these comics to add to my shelve. It’s an interesting story and although some lines were cliché or predictable, I still enjoy it to the fullest reading the entire series in one sitting. As I mentioned above it’s a short series that is pushing for a second “season” of books, so check out the trailer below to get glimpses of the story and the hope for the creator and his Kickstarter.

Overall

Overall I HIGHLY suggest this series if you are into aliens, allies, space travel, paradoxes, and so much more Sci-Fi stories. I am extremely grateful I got a chance to read and write about this series, as I don’t normally get many chances and rest assure that the story will keep you entertained as it did me.

If you get a chance you can find this story on Comixology, Coud9Comix and others and help the creator reach their kickstarter goal.