Posts Tagged ‘TWOPANDAS’

Review – True Blood – She’s Not There (S04Ep01)

Saturday, July 2nd, 2011

It is good to be the King, no?

This week:
She’s back (via the fairy dimension) but time has moved on, just like the people in Sookie’s life. The world comes crashing back in on Sookie and we find out what our favourite Bon Temps residents have been up to.

Pluses:
Bill did his house up finally.
Jason finally got his wish to be a Deputy.
Tara’s arc totally makes sense given what she has been through.
Pam being Pam.
Eric has lost a lot of his bulk from last season.
The poo is finally off Sookie’s walls.

Minuses:
Fairy realm. So poorly done and hopefully the end of this arc.
Necromancy (though I know where it is going).
Jesus and Lafayette.
Jessica and Hoyt.

This episode was a bit disappointing. As soon as they did the time jump I was really interested in seeing how some characters had developed – Everyone’s favourite baby vamp, Jess, was a character I was really interested in seeing. I know it is early days, but what was portrayed wasn’t very Jessica. I felt like they were trying to cram too much in to cover everything. Given how short a time span a series is, I hope we get to see more of the development and never go back to the fairy kingdom.

#twofangtasialovingpandas

Review – EndGame – Opening Moves – Pilot (S01Ep01)

Sunday, March 27th, 2011

I am an alcoholic, agrophobe with a heightened sense of self worth. What is there not to love?

Synopsis:
Chess grand master Arkady Balagan is a man who is trapped in a hotel after witnessing a tragedy. Facing eviction for not paying his account, Balagan takes on cases to pay his way.

This week:
We get to meet Balagan and his unlikely band of side kicks. A chess addict, a clearer and a bar tender, and his ex-fiancee’s sister – his only friends in this home away from home. The adopted son of the bar tender’s friend is kidnapped, and Balagan uses his unique ability of seeing all the moves on the board, to find the little boy.

Pluses:
Quite an unlikely anti-hero. Infact there is very little to like about Balagan, yet you do.
Interesting way he “sees” the board and hypothesises situations.
People look normal.

Minuses:
The supporting cast is a bit hohum – though hopefully they will develop.
I wonder if they have written themselves into a corner, as our main character can’t leave the hotel.
Going to be a case of the week scenario with only one over all arc.
Didn’t really buy into the suspense.
Stereotyping to the extreme.

I will check out this Canadian drama again to see how it develops. It is still lacking depth though, however the overall premise seems quite sound and an interesting take on a cop/PI drama.


#twoblackandwhitepandas

Review – Burke and Hare (2010)

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

So instead of waiting for people to die of natural causes, we will "assist," humanely of course!

Synopsis:
This black British comedy takes a light hearted look at the mass murders committed in Edinburgh over the course of a year from 1827 to 1828. Based loosely  on the truth, Burke (Simon Pegg) and Hale (Andy Serkis) turn to mass murder to supply a prestigious medical college with cadavers.

Pluses:
Interesting truth behind the story.
Simon Pegg plays the role of Burke as a likeable anti-hero.
Serkis’ Hare was a much more interesting and multi-layered character. I later read that David Tennant was initially scheduled to play Hare but had to pull out due to scheduling clashes. I would much rather have seen Tennant play it than Serkis.
The supporting cast was brilliant! Ron Corbett!! Tom Wilkinson, Hugh Bonneville and Tim Curry. Blink and you will miss Christopher Lee.
Enjoyably shot and really well lit. A lot of this movie takes place at night or indoors.

Minuses:
Isla Fisher was just recycling previous roles and added little.
Mass murderers aren’t loveable larrikins.
It felt a bit over done – like everyone was trying that bit too hard.

Overall, watching people do the cameos and minor roles was much more entertaining than the movie itself – which is a real shame. Maybe it is just me, but I didn’t really find myself wanting them to get off, for Burke to get the girl etc.  So my lack of buy-in saw me remarkably disengaged.


#twopandaswhomurderforcash

Review – Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior – Two of a Kind (S01Ep01)

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

I am going to shoot my agent for convincing me to do this gig.

Synopsis:
This is a spin off from the hit show Criminal Minds. It follows a Red Team of the FBI who focus on profiling criminals and seem to be able to work outside normal boundaries as they report only to the Director of the FBI. They all have backstories which will impact the way they approach the cases.

This week:
A 8 year old white girl from an affluent Chicago neighbourhood is abducted. The team are sent there by Toby Zeigler (Richard Schiff) to find the little girl, only to hear of an 8 year old black girl from the bad side of town was taken a week or so ago… could there possibly be a connection?

Pluses:
Great cast – Forest Whitaker, Janeane Garofalo and more.
Richard Schiff as the Director.

Minuses:
Could it be any more cookie cutter?
Makes a procedural drama seems ground breaking.
So obvious plot.
Why is there a Brit in the FBI?
The Garcia character is a stereotype of a tv stereotype.
Last scene was just an insult to the viewer.

I hadn’t watched Criminal Minds for some time, but given the cast, was interested in giving it a go. I won’t be back.

#twodisappointedpandas

Review – Mr. Sunshine – Employee of the Year (S01Ep02)

Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

Hey, I am playing to type! What do you mean I can't wear my purity ring?

This week:
Ben has worked at the Sunshine Centre for 10 years and is looking for some recognition. Crystal decides to run a competition for best staff member. A Jonas brother plays a pop idol and Alice and Alonzo have some not so friendly competition.

Pluses:
Better writing than the pilot.
More development of the characters.
The pop star story line and its resolution.

Minuses:
Janney’s character is still woefully overdone.
Just how bright are Nate Torrence’s teeth? Distracting as all hell.

Let’s be honest, this is a long way from being in the same league as Community (which I am well behind with reviews) but it didn’t quite suck this week.


#twosomewhatindifferentpandas

Review – Megamind (2010)

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

Blah blah blah blah? Blah blah blah. Blah.

Synopsis:
From babyhood, MegaMind and MetroMan have been adversaries. When MegaMind finally manages to defeat MetroMan, he finds his life is empty and has to rethink his choices.

Pluses:
Hearing Brad Pitt to superhero was fun!
Invisible car (and losing it).
The watch.
Oh noes! Copper.

Minuses:
I don’t think I laughed once.
Didn’t like the animation style – MegaMind just lacked detail.
Storyline promised a lot more than it gave.
Clichéd.

Why do animated movies these days seem to need to finish with a song and dance? How To Train Your Dragon didn’t, but that is the only one recently that hasn’t (that I have seen that is). I quite wanted to like this, and had hopes that it would be better than Despicable Me, and it was – just.

#twobluebigheadedpandas

Review – Love and Other Drugs (2010)

Tuesday, February 15th, 2011

Gyllenhall: How can I be less likeable to the audience? Platt: No idea but I am just going to have fun

Synopsis:
Tells the journeys of Jamie and Maggie (Gyllenhall and Hathaway). Jamie has floated around his life, directed by his cock and now works for an international drug company as a rep in Ohio. Maggie has a chronic and degenerative disease, and is just after living for the moment. Can these two free spirits with different motivations make it work without becoming too dependent on the other?

Pluses:
There were some very amusing scenes about drug sales in the first half of the movie.
Oliver Platt – nuff said.
Early Maggie.
Maggie’s apartment – wouldn’t want to live there – but looked lovely.

Minuses:
I found the whole thing rather trite.
The Viagra pushing scenes weren’t at all funny.
Lacked depth and thematic challenges.
Not enough Oliver Platt.
Unrealistic ending.
Too many of the supporting cast were playing caricature not people.

I found this movie very unsatisfying. It tried too hard to be risque with the sex and I didn’t empathise with Jamie at all and Maggie was almost as unlikeable.

#twoperscriptiondrugpushingpandas

PS. Click here if you want to see Gyllenhall’s penis.

Review – Nikita – Coup de Grace (S01Ep13)

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

What? You don't think I can take down two highly trained and armed operatives with nothing but a dull Samurai Sword?

This week:
Alex has a big mission coming up. Nikita is going to foil it. Percy blusters. Michael is called in. Suspicions are raised.

Pluses:
Alex playing both sides.
Michael starting to sniff out the truth.

Minuses:
Why not just check Alex’s mobile phone location?
Nikita in a sword fight.
The case while a twist, wasn’t that interesting.
No empathy for the target and no real interest in the case at all actually.
What, they just climbed down off the roof? Please.

This episode lacked the depth of usual Nikita episodes, and was way too focused on nothing. It was still a distracting and enjoyable show, but left me feeling half full.

#twopandasinasilverdresswithasamuraisword

Review – Hereafter (2010)

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

The first 10 minutes of the movie are spectacular - Eastwood should have directed 2012!

Synopsis:
Three people (a journalist, a psychic, a twin), all coping with mortality (and near death) differently, go about their lives until coincidence brings them together. (Please note, it is NOTHING like the ads on TV at the moment but more like the slow journey of the trailer though not as uplifting and definitely NOT a thriller)

Pluses:
The score was brilliant – really added to the movie.
The moments of humour especially during the cooking scene and during the psychic hunt.
Each interesting stories in their own right (just not sure they work well together).
Opening scene of the Boxing Day Tsunami.
The minute or two before the London Bombings.
Bryce Dallas Howard was highly engaging.

Minuses:
Felt the acting by the remaining twin was quite wooden.
For someone so adamant about not doing something, Damon’s George does it a lot.
There was just too much filler for me.
The tempo of each of the stories were just so different – I could have seen each separately if the telling was tight.
Unsatisfying ending.
So slow.
Did George’s older brother have to be such a slime ball?
The lighting felt so deliberate and distracted from the story.
Nothing like the ads.

I am sure that the Clint Eastwood lovers will rave about this movie. It was nicely shot, with a lovely score, but it left me non-plussed. Afterwards, I said to those I saw it with, that it was a 2 hour walk into darkness. For a movie that was released three and a half months ago in the US, it made little waves here – for good reason.

Big thanks to The Film Pie for the free tix. It was on my list to see after seeing the ad.

#twodisappointedpandas

Review – Faster (2010)

Monday, February 7th, 2011

I don't have many lines, but damn it I am good at bad arse looks

Synopsis:
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is a convicted bank robbing felon that has just been released from prison. He has a hit list – the men who killed his brother. What follows is a revenge flick, which sees our anti-hero dodge a “beautiful” hitman and a drug addict cop.

Pluses:
The car chase scene post bank robbery.
A fun romp for 90 mins.
Nice to see Johnson in something other than a feel good Disney movie.
Johnson oozed cold, hard, vengeful killer.
Very strong supporting cast.
The music.
I am a fan of the revenge movie.

Minuses:
The dialogue was pretty poor.
The twist was about as obscured as a twist in The Cape.
Three stories intertwined, that only one really satisfactorily ended. The Hit Man ending was just silly to me.

I was surprised that during the preview screening I went to, people were laughing out loud at some of the cheesy lines. There was no cheering, but people certainly got into it. I cringed a couple of times, but over all, I had fun. I wouldn’t recommend it to my female friends or my higher brow male friends, but this movie has a clear demographic and it targets it well.

Thanks to ReviewBrisbane for the tix.

#twopandaswhoareghosts