Author: Vik Verpl.

Captain America: The First Avenger – Review

Captain America: The First Avenger is synonymous to Iron Manand Thor in the sense that it serves as a predecessor to the anticipated 2012 The Avengers, as made evident by the title. While, yes, being one of the better superhero-adaptations, it’s — exactly like the large proportion of its kind — laced with a derivative protagonist, a highly foreseeable storyline and an overal feeling of unoriginality. The film unfolds in the present, where our superhero Captain America (Chris Evans; Fantastic Four, Scot Pilgrim vs. The World)  is found frozen in a block of ice. After cutting back a number of decades to the time of World War II, we meet Steve Rogers. He has ample courage, but is trapped in an unfitting body. Simply put: He is a weakling unable to defend himself. However, he has a good heart and equal intentions. Having the conviction that not fighting for his country is a right he doesn’t have, he, without giving up, makes ample attempts to be accepted into the military. And his perseverance proves rewarding, as he eventually does succeed. But only because he caught the eye of Dr. Abraham Erskine (Stanley Tucci;The Devil Wears Prada, Lucky Number Slevin) who’s in dire need of a fitting test subject for an experiment to create a “supersoldier”. Dr. Erskine was not in search for a physiologically fit man, instead he aimed for a person capable of understanding respect for...

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Psycho (1960) – Review

In an era where films are consistently conventional and rarely deviate from formulaic stories and structures, one can always go back a couple of decades and watch Alfred Hitchcock’s classic Psycho. It’s one of many films that confirms him being the rightful owner of the “Master of suspense” title, and it might even be his best picture. While I’m not of the opinion that it’s one of the most morally unsettling stories to have ever been told (as many have said it to be), I do believe that it’s one of the greatest and ballsiest of the suspense genre to have ever seen the screen. And it is of said genre, not horror as some might have you believe, although it does comes very close. Certainly, the iconic (and brilliantly shot) shower scene is horrific, but it remains a psychological suspense/thriller. At the same time, it brought about the entire slasher genre, yet there’s a crystal clear difference between films such as Friday the 13th, Halloween, Black Christmas and Psycho. Not only is Hitchcock a master of suspense, he is also a master at storytelling. After a terrific opening credit sequence, we are told everything we need to know about our main character Marion Crane (Janet Leigh) in a mere few minutes, which is just one example of how eminently structured it is. She takes long lunch breaks from her work at the Phoenix office to meet with her...

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Green Lantern – Review

Green Lantern, directed by Martin Campbell (Casino Royale, Edge of Darkness) is yet another comic book adaptation released this year, and would, I imagine, score a solid ten on a silliness scale. But then again, it seems to be most self-aware, seeing it unabashedly adresses its absurdities through dialogue. The large proportion of superheroe movies aren’t privy to unconventionality, and this one certainly isn’t any different. It comes to no surprise that it too follows the good-versus-evil mantra we’ve seen ample times before. The Green Lantern Corps (what should have been called “The Green Ring Corps”)  are a group of humanoid creatures residing on the planet Oa. They are warriors, and each of them are responsible to keep order and peace within their own section of the universe, seeing it has been divided in several (does this imply that the universe is finite?). As the oath says, no evil shall escape their sight. Hal Jordan, played by Ryan Reynolds, is a skilled test pilot with a lot of courage. When one of the Green Lanterns crashes on Earth after being agressed by the exponentially growing Parallax (an evil creature threatening to destroy the universe), the ring chooses a a new bearer for itself. And naturally, its choice is Hal, making him the first human being to ever have become a member of the corps. When the malignant Parallax adumbrates...

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There Will Be Blood – Review

There Will Be Blood (loosely based on Upton Sinclair’s novel Oil!) is what you would call an epic– and monumental one at that. It’s another endeavor by the oh-so-masterful auteur Paul Thomas Anderson (Sydney, Magnolia), and unlike several other works of his, it doesn’t concentrate on an abundance of characters, instead it focuses on only one: Daniel Plainview, played by Daniel Day-Lewis (who’s the only recognized actor in the film). His tremendously dazzling energy alone renders this one of the most powerful films of the decades. You will agree when I say Daniel Plainview is an oil man. His only goal in life is becoming as rich as he possibly can. He went from poor silver prospector to more-than-wealthy oil company owner, possessing several flourishing wells. In short: He’s a self-made man. When a stranger named Paul Sunday comes along and offers him the location (at a price) with huge amounts of oil, he accepts the proposition (after threatening him with his life, naturally). A small town called Little Boston is the place Paul spoke of. Daniel soon buys the Sunday family’s ranch, and most of the land around it. There he meets Eli Sunday, who is Paul’s twin brother (or so I assume), a supposed prophet and leader of the Church of the third Revelation. A peculiar and a fascinating clash between the two polarizing men (Eli being excessively religious, and Daniel...

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