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Overlord (2018)

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The German doctor, he believes the tar in the ground
has some kind of a power.
He calls it his science.
But it’s just an excuse to kill us.

When I watched the movie “Trench 11” at the end of last year, I already said this might be the cheaper version of “Overlord“. The starting point was identical. In “Trench 11” it’s a group of soldiers who had to search an abandoned bunker of the Germans. There were rumors the Germans conducted experiments there. The Germans tried to fabricate a chemical product so they could create invincible storm troops and thus conquer the rest of the non-German-Friendly world. The biggest difference between “Overlord” and “Trench 11” is the choice of world war. In “Trench 11” they were wallowing in the trenches during World War I. “Overlord” takes place during the 2nd World War. That means a lot of raised hands and loud clacking of heels. But the rest is actually similar. A film that shows the madness of a filthy war and mixes this with non-human creatures with the madness flowing through their veins.

 

 

It’s D-Day all over again.

Operation Overlord was the code name for the invasion by the Allies in German-occupied Western Europe. Obviously, that’s where the film got its title from. And that’s also where this film begins. A swarm of flying fortresses on their way to France to drop a load of paratroopers. It seemed as if I was watching “The Longest Day” back again. Even the ritual with the agreed code words “Flash” and “Thunder” is used in this movie (I missed the clicking though). The opening scene is still impressive and reminds you of legendary WWII films such as “Saving Privat Ryan” (although the first 15 minutes of the latter were obviously more impressive).

 

 

First, it’s a genuine war-movie

The first part is therefore entirely devoted to the mission of a few American paratroopers. The task they need to complete is disabling a radio tower somewhere in a French village. An extremely important assignment, it seems, It sounds far-fetched but the success of the entire invasion depends on it apparently. From the group of soldiers Boyce (Jovan Adepo), Ford (Wyatt Russell, son of) and Tibbet (John Magaro) take center stage. Boyce is the wimp. An inexperienced soldier who’s regarded by the others as useless. Ford is the leading officer who has to make sure the operation succeeds. A gut-eater avant la lettre. And Tibbet is the bigmouth of them all who brags about his sniper qualities. Something that he wants to put into practice in Berlin. He’ll put a bullet through Hitler’s head and thus end this world war rapidly.

 

 

And then the horror kicks in.

Their path crosses that of Chloe (Mathilde Olivier), a French resistance fighter who wants to take revenge on the German occupiers of her village. Understandable, since those Germans systematically use the inhabitants of the village as test animals. Including Chloe’s parents. From here, the film gradually transforms into a horror/zombie film. Not that it’s all so scary or nerve-racking. In my opinion “Overlord” is nothing more than a typical war film in which a commando, with a specific mission, not only battles German troops but also non-human opponents. So be prepared for lots of veined bloodthirsty creatures, blown away or crushed body parts and gallons of blood.

 

 

Pulp War/Horror Movie.

I wasn’t really impressed by this film. For me, it’s just a more expensive, slick version of “Trench 11“. Maybe I was misled by the trailer. The trailer suggested it would be a blood-curdling zombie movie. Ultimately, the film shows the horror of this world war in a proper way. And there are also a bunch of crazy Nazi doctors who try to create an Übermensch. Something similar as when General Ludendorff sniffs some kind of chemical stuff in “Wonder Woman“, after which he suddenly has superhuman powers. In short, “Overlord” is a pulp war/horror movie. It’s great material to create some kind of videogame from. It isn’t very original and certainly disappointing for the seasoned horror fanatic. But this much I can say. It isn’t boring. On the contrary. It’s entertaining enough. And it’s been expertly put together. It’s worth a look for sure.

 

My rating 6/10
Links: IMDB

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Alita : Battle Angel – Fast Paced Action-Rich Combat Scenes

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While I’m learning name, do you have one for me?
Alita.
It’s a nice name.
I love it!

I was really looking forward to this movie “Alita: Battle Angel“. A cyber-punk setting and unparalleled computerized images that are perfectly injected into a real-life environment. Of course, you know Alita (Rosa Salazar) is the result of a hard-working graphic designer who has been sweating for hours behind his computer screen to project a graphic shell onto a real-life person. However, it didn’t bother me. Alita seemed like a lifelike person. Even though she had those unnatural large Bambi eyes. I admit that at the beginning, my eyes always wandered down to her derriere to see if there was such a sweet little wagging tail. But eventually, how strange it might sound, I thought the end result was quite meager. Poor in terms of atmosphere and narrative.

 

Alita : Battle Angel

Cheesy father-daughter story.

Maybe my expectations were a little too high. Or was it the cheesiness of the father-daughter story? There’s the all-consuming grief after the loss of a daughter. A search for a surrogate daughter to appease this sorrow. And that causes Dr. Dyson Ido (Christoph Waltz) scouring the dump of Zalem (the last air city that immediately reminded me of the movie “Elysium“) for discarded cyborg parts, so he could construct Alita. He’s a kind of Frankenstein. But this time using non-human parts.

 

Alita : Battle Angel

 

Oh no. The romantic part.

Or maybe it was the romantic part. The last thing I needed. Really. The moment Hugo (Keean Johnson) came into the picture, I already knew that this rebel-looking hunk would make a romantic connection with this artificial being. And I really didn’t feel like witnessing romantic frivolities that make young teenage girls float. The only thing you aren’t sure about is the outcome. A happy ending? Or a catastrophic one?

 

Alita : Battle Angel

 

The visuals are tremendous.

The only thing I regretted afterward, was that I hadn’t seen it on the silver screen. Probably it will all have been bigger and more impressive. Because frankly, the visuals are really amazing so to call (Not so hard when you see the budget they had). Great eye for details. A city that looks like a run-down anthill where metallic constructions stand next to remnants of the past. And a whole bunch of futuristic technologies and vehicles.

 

Alita : Battle Angel

 

Past-paced, action-rich combat scenes.

And also, the action-rich combat scenes look great actually. Swirling images in slow motion and impressive choreography you might say. Especially the fight in the bar with Zapan (EdThe transporter refueledSkrein), the skirmish in an alley after she followed Ido and the underground fight with Grewishka (Jackie Earle Haley) appealed to my imagination. And finally, there are also the Motorball competitions. Action-packed, fast-paced and mouth-wateringly brought into the picture. It immediately reminded me of the old film “Rollerball” from 1975.

 

Alita : Battle Angel

 

Impressive visuals, poor story.

But despite all the graphic power and hard action, I found it overall disappointing and moderate. Even though the fighting was extremely solid in terms of views, it was too safe and colored inside the lines. Perhaps because they were aiming at a young audience. But most of all I missed a solid and clear story. The so-called Great War was mentioned, but they didn’t do much more with it. The flying cities were also a complete mystery to me. There was no explanation. Beware, I had the same thing with “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets“. Also, a visually overwhelming film where the story is difficult to understand. This last film is also based on a comic, just like “Alita“. I can imagine that fans of these comics can empathize better with the story. But my biggest annoyance was that at the end I realized that I had watched a lengthy intro to the sequel that is probably already on the table at Twentieth Century Fox. And I hate sequels. Good advice Fox. Provide the continuation with a touch of humor, because that was missing too here.
Conclusion: a film that looks magnificent with a not so impressive story.

 

My rating 5/10
Links: IMDB

 

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Finally Official – ‘Matrix 4’ Is On The Way With Original Cast

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“Lana is a true visionary, a singular and original creative filmmaker”

This time it’s for real! This is not a drill “Matrix” fans. Warner Bros. Picture Group chairman Toby Emmerich has confirmed, the computer generated world of ‘The Matrix’ will be returning to the big screen. The original cast will be reprising their roles, while Lana Wachowski will be sharing co-writing duties with Aleksander Hemon and David Mitchell. Lana will also be directing the future installment, with no word as of yet if her sister Lilly Wachowski will sign on. But chances are, that may change once things get further underway. Toby Emmerich released an official statement on the project, here’s what he had to say:

“We could not be more excited to be re-entering ‘The Matrix’ with Lana. Lana is a true visionary, a singular and original creative filmmaker, and we are thrilled that she is writing, directing and producing this new chapter in ‘The Matrix’ universe.”

Though Plot details haven’t been worked out. Lana Wachowski shed some light as to the direction we can expect:

“Many of the ideas Lilly and I explored 20 years ago about our reality are even more relevant now. I’m very happy to have these characters back in my life and grateful for another chance to work with my brilliant friends.”

Keanu Reeves is set to return as Neo with Carrie-Anne Moss reprising her role as the infamous computer hacker, Trinity. How this will all work has yet to be revealed, considering both characters met their demise at the end of the current trilogy. There’s is also no word yet on whether  Laurence Fishbourne will return as the rebellion  leader, Morpheus.

Production is set to begin 2020

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Underwater | Official Trailer – HD

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Genre:

Action, Drama, Horror

Release Date:

January 10, 2020

Director:

William Eubank

Cast:

Kristen Stewart, T.J. Miller, Vincent Cassel, Jessica Henwick, John Gallagher Jr., Mamoudou Athie

Plot Summary:

After an earthquake destroys their underwater station, six researchers must navigate two miles in the dangerous, unknown depths of the ocean floor to make it to safety in a race against time.

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