Review : The Hobbit the Battle of the 5 Armies

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“Bilbo and Company are forced to engage in a war against an array of combatants and keep the Lonely Mountain from falling into the hands of a rising darkness.”

The problem with these Hobbit movies, is that they came AFTER the master piece that was the LOTR trilogy. So no matter what did this and the movies that came before it did, there was no way to over come that level of pressure it had on its back. That’s not to say this isn’t a good movie, it really is a very solid movie, though in my opinion not up to par with the desolation of Smaug. This movie does have a lot of heart but it also feels a part of it is missing. Maybe its the fact that the stakes of this movie don’t seem as present as those in the LOTRs or the fact that i KNOW whats going to happen for certain characters, that it pulls me out a bit in how much i should care for them in that moment. The ones who’s futures i wasn’t privy too however, were very well done. The entire company of actors here are really amazing. Even though Smaug doesnt have a huge part in this movie, his scenes with Luke Evans’ Bard are really something to behold. I definitely think you should see this movie, as it is a fitting conclusion to The Hobbit series, my only wish was that these movies came out before the LOTRs so they had a better shot of really carving out a place for themselves.

Review Score : 7.5 out of 10

Review : Exodus Gods and Kings

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“The defiant leader Moses rises up against the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses, setting 600,000 slaves on a monumental journey of escape from Egypt and its terrifying cycle of deadly plagues.”

Now this review will be a bit longer than usual, because this is such a polarising film. I can’t simply review it, with out addressing the elephant in the room that is the so called white washing of this cast. So firstly, is it white washed? Well yes and know, obviously there are more people of the considered proper ethnic background cast here than “White” people, thats not the issue, the issue if that the lead roles (those of the prominent figures) are most all been cast as “White” actors. The topped billed cast is almost exactly half white and half other races (there are a whole lot of races in this movie). This still doesn’t answer the question, and that’s because i don’t think it is as simple as it has been made to appear. YES every role in this movie could have been cast by capable characters of the considered proper colour. YES this movie could have still been made if that had happened. Could it have ended up the same way? NO. Let me explain. Hollywood is a very special place (take that special however you want to), but it is also a very predictable place. There is one thing that drives everything, and that thing is money. Films needless to say need money to made, films such as this one probably need A LOT. A lot has also  been made of the director Ridley Scott’s comments that “I can’t mount a film of this budget, where I have to rely on tax rebates in Spain, and say that my lead actor is Mohammad so-and-so from such-and-such. I’m just not going to get it financed. So the question doesn’t even come up.” Now while i will say that that comment may not be very PC it is also not incorrect. Despite what you think, these words are mostly true. To get the kind of budget needed to make a movie of this scale (as scale there is in spades here) studios want to see big name talent attached, otherwise they won’t believe that they can get there money back, and they won’t give you any, or as much as you need. I know it sounds wrong, and it is, from a certain stand point, but it isn’t wrong from a business stand point, and thats the one that matters here. Yes i do think that the movie could have been done with none white actors, but as a film fan, what matters is do these actors pull me out of the experience, because all i can think is why is this dude white? And for the most part, i didn’t. Funnily enough also, the only parts where that did happen where with two characters that probably have 2 lines each entire movie. Some people also pointed to a Sphinx that had its features changed to look more “white” i believe. From my point of view that Sphinx just looked a lot like Joel Edgerton to me, which makes sense in my mind seeing as that’s who they would have been making it for, but thats an impossible argument to win, you see it which ever way you want to. From a religious point of view the movie has also taken some heat. Many people are of the opinion that God has been taken out of the picture here, and that is simply not the case. It is simply a portrayal that some people might not like or appreciate. But why make this movie if the goal was simply to repeat what has come before? So now we can finally talk strictly about the movie here, and this movie is vast and epic. You can truly get a feel for the environments you are put in, and how much it must of taken for mere human labour to create. The acting here is very good also, but a movie like this really does need strong characters to take you across all the time that this movie spans. This movie is also much more interpretive in the way it presents religion and faith. It doesn’t simply give you answers, it gives you a much more human account of the events it portrays. Now would i recommend people see this movie? Yes i would, it is a GOOD movie. However i understand all the outrage and calls for a boycott as well. And very much if this movie does offend you, then don’t see, i’d just say don’t call it a bad MOVIE if you don’t see it (call it whatever else you want). So all in all in the end what we have here is a very solid movie that will forever be marred by allegations and press blurbs of quotes and constant charges of injustice levelled against it.

Review Score : 7.5 out of 10