Benz Eye View: Pixels

Pixels
Pixels

Pros:

The visual effects are surprisingly good.  I believe it is because they are so simplistic with its bits and pieces that it is done well in a realistic world.

It is pretty cool that Sony managed to get many video game characters from different video game companies (i.e. Nintendo, Konami, etc.).

The action is also pretty cool and well done.  Like the visual effects, it is simplistic enough to be entertaining, and easy to follow what is happening.

Cons:

The writing seems to concentrate only on the actors’ abilities to ad-lib.  Meaning, they spend several minutes of these characters spewing jokes and one-liners that its only contribution is to be funny, and not progressing the story.  This makes it distracting, and it slows down the movie.

I do not care about any of the characters (except one), because they are poorly written and cliched.  The only character I cared for is Q*bert, and he only comes in after 3/5ths of the movie have passed.

Not only does movie have plenty of plot holes, but the subplots are stupid.  With a concept this admittedly dumb, that just makes it worse.

Overall:

Based off a two-minute short, Pixels is as a ridiculous as you expected.  However, with Happy Madison Productions involved in this picture, this makes the movie even worse.  I mean, come on.  These guys really need to stop making movies for the sake of having their friends to come together and have fun.  If they want to do that, at least make a movie that everyone else can enjoy (i.e. 50 First Dates, Click).  However, they have a tendency in creating terrible movies (i.e. Jack and Jill, Paul Blart: Mall Cop, etc.) that they seem to enjoy, but no one else does.  This movie is not that bad, but they seriously need get their act together and make a good movie.  With a dumb plot, bad writing, and jokes that will get old really fast, Pixels is just another typical Happy Madison Productions movie: uninteresting.

3/10

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Benz Eye View: Ant-Man

Ant-Man_poster
Ant-Man

Pros:

Pretty good cinematography on showing the atomic world (small), and the regular world (big).  It conveys how big or small the person is in Ant-Man’s perspective.

Many characters are pretty funny, but some of them can speak a little too fast, so pay attention in order to get the joke.

The design for Ant-Man, the ants, and Yellowjacket are pretty cool.

Cons:

The writing needs work.  The pacing has issues, and I spotted a few plot holes that can be really bothersome.

The villain, Darren Cross/Yellowjacket is really lackluster.  They did give him a reason why he is doing his “evil” work, but he is not interesting, poorly developed, and even a bit cartoonish.

The other characters are barely interesting.  They could have been more interesting, but they are predictable and cliched enough to make me barely care for them.

Overall:

When I heard this movie is going to be made in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, I thought, “Ant-Man?  ANT-MAN?!  A guy who has the ability to shrink in the size of an ant, to have super strength and speed in the small size, and to control other ants.  The concept itself is ridiculous.  I hope Marvel Studios know what they are doing.”  Do they?  Before I answer that, I want to talk about some of its background.  The Ant-Man movie was written and directed by Edgar Wright.

Edgar Wright: the guy who the Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World's End)
Edgar Wright: the guy who made the Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World’s End)

He worked on it for over eight years.  Marvel has even said that his script was the best they have ever seen.  Unfortunately, Wright came to Marvel one day, and found out that they are rewriting his script, because they needed it to fit into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  The only thing he did is leaving Marvel, so they decided to get a lesser director, Peyton Reed (Bring It On, Yes Man).  With that backstory in mind, I hope the Edgar Wright script is good, because this Ant-Man movie is average at best.  At worst, it is very lackluster.  There were very few times that I actually cared about what is going on, because the things in the movie that are good are really good.  The rest just needed work.  This is not a terrible movie by all means, it just needs to be improved on.  They did a decent job into actually getting me to buy a super hero with the ability to shrink like an ant, but hopefully they can do better next time in their next Marvel movie (which its after-credits scene is the only thing that I was actually got me excited).

5/10

Benz Eye View: Minions

Minions
Minions

Pros:

The animation is great.  The characters (especially the Minions) are so alive and active, you cannot mistake that these characters are moving, animated creatures.

As for the Minions themselves, they are very likable and funny.  As for the three main Minions (Stuart, Kevin, and Bob), their characteristics and appearances are different enough for people to know and like them (although, it may take a while since they look very similar to each other).

There is a surprisingly good amount of action scenes that are not only entertaining, but also funny at the same time.

Cons:

There is a certain amount of humor that is crude, and will only satisfy younger audiences.

Some jokes are not executed that well, at least for me.  I did not find them funny, but the audience I was with did.

The movie relies on stereotypes and cliches that may be boring and unfunny to some people.

Overall:

I have never seen any of the Despicable Me movies, so I figured that I do not need to watch those movies in order to watch this prequel.  Fortunately, you do not need to watch the Despicable Me movies in order to watch this one.  On its own, I thought this movie is pretty good.  It certainly does have its charm thanks to the Minions.  They talk in gibberish (and sometimes Spanish), they are silly but not stupid (not that stupid, at least), and they are very dedicated to find their villainous boss.  However, I did not find the movie itself to be that funny to me.  The audience I was with laughed out loud at its comedy, but I just chuckled.  Maybe this movie is not for me, but I can tell it is a pretty well-made movie.  It is certainly a made more for children than adults (where as Inside Out was made more for adults than children).  I am willing to watch the Despicable Me movies now, and Minions will satisfy any fans of the series.

7.5/10

Benz Eye View: Terminator: Genisys

Terminator: Genisys
Terminator: Genisys

Pros:

The concept of the movie is interesting (Kyle Reese being sent back in time except he is in an alternate timeline), if not a little confusing and infuriating on the rest of the Terminator movies (I assume so since this movie is implying that 3: Rise of the Machines and Salvation never happened).

Arnold Schwarzenegger is back, and he does a great job being the Terminator again despite his old age.

The rest of the actors (except one which I will get to) does a pretty good job in their roles.  A big plus is that they got Matt Smith (aka the 11th Doctor ) to be part of this movie (I am a Whovian).

Cons:

The special effects do not look good.  I can easily tell that it is fake or it is a green screen behind the actors.  In comparison, Jurassic World’s special effects were good (if not overused).

Look at this and tell me which is the real and fake Arnold.
Look at these and tell me which is the real and fake Arnold.

I think there is too much action in this movie.  I used “I think,” because the action sequences felt a bit dull and lackluster with its bad special effects.

The one actor that does not fit in this movie is Emilia Clarke as Sarah Connor.  The character is a strong woman who went through so much, especially in Terminator.  Linda Hamilton from the original Terminator films did a great job looking and playing that role.  Her appearance alone makes me says, “She is a tough woman that went through hell, and she can prove it.”  On the other hand, Emilia Clarke, as much as she does well acting the part, she does not look like the part.  From her appearance, I can only say,”Ahhh.  Isn’t it cute that she is playing tough to look cool?  How adorable.”  God bless her that she tried, but better luck next time.

Overall:

The first two Terminator films are classics.  The next two…not so much.  How about this new Terminator movie?  Here is the thing: I am conflicted with this movie.  There are some things that I like about it, but there are things that I don’t.  How am I suppose to score this movie?  It comes with this decision: what made the first two Terminators so great?  Terminator 1 and 2 were so great, because it had many morale quandaries with a small amount of action scenes used well.  This movie has plenty of action scenes with little morale quandaries used poorly, and with little surprise.  If they are planning to make another sequel, it is very unlikely it will dominate the original two films.  However, it may surpass the sequels, which this movie did not for me, but it may satisfy you guys depending on your action tastes.

5/10

Terminator: Genisys?  Sega called.  They say it is not a good idea to have Genesis in your subtitle.  Especially if it is misspelled.
Terminator: Genisys? Sega called. They say it is not a good idea to have Genesis in your subtitle. Especially if it is misspelled.

Benz Eye View: Spy

Spy
Spy

Pros:

The action scenes with Melissa McCarthy are impressive considering her…I am not going to say it.  For all I know, it may be a stunt double in a suit.

Jason Statham is surprisingly funny, particularly when he is being serious in many ridiculous moments.  Also, the other cast members are kind of funny as well.

…That is about it.

Cons:

The first act of this movie is the worst part.  It takes too long to get interesting since there are poorly executed expositions, and not-that-great jokes…

…Speaking of jokes, some of them can be outright distasteful for some people.  Then again, this movie does realize that, so I am not going to hate on it too much.

Most action scenes are in slow-mo way too many times.  I do not know why they are doing this, but my guess is that they are doing it to be cool, which it is not.

Overall:

I have heard that this movie is really good and funny, so I decided to check it out.  I can say that this movie is not for me.  I prefer not have a comedy that spends most of its time saying many one-liners, exposition jokes, and dirty humor.  I understand that this is supposed to be a satire for many agent movies…

Guess what this poster is making fun of.
Guess what this poster is making fun of.

…but only if it is done well and in my taste.  As for what the target audience that this movie is going for, it is fine if you enjoy the type of humor I mentioned.  All-in-all, this movie fits well for its audience, but not me.

6/10

*sigh* I want to watch Inside Out again…