Tuesday, 18 June 2019

Film Reviews: Tolkien and X-Men--Dark Phoenix

Tolkien
17 June 2019
112 mins
PG-13
Dome Karukoski (Director) 
Nicholas Hoult, Lily Collins
Biography/Drama

The formative years of the orphaned author J.R.R. Tolkien as he finds friendship, love and artistic inspiration among a group of fellow outcasts at school.
(IMDB Synopsis)

For me, Tolkien was a mixed bag. It wasn't bad per se--the performances were good, the pacing fine, the soundtrack pleasing--but it simply never thrilled me. I thought the Lord of the Rings connections overly belaboured, as if we wouldn't get them if they weren't spelled out for us, and I wish more credit had been given to Tolkien's other academic achievements, alongside his fantasy writing. Overall, I am glad I saw this, but it's not something I'll rush to rewatch or buy on DVD. 3.5 stars.



X-Men: Dark Phoenix
17 June 2019
113 mins
PG-13
Simon Kinberg (Director) 
Sophie Turner, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender
Fantasy/Sci-Fi/Action

Jean Grey begins to develop incredible powers that corrupt and turn her into a Dark Phoenix. Now the X-Men will have to decide if the life of a team member is worth more than all of humanity. (IMDB Synopsis)

Considering all the bad press this film has received, I went in without high expectations, but, in all honesty, I didn't think it was that dreadful. Yes, it's definitely the weakest of the four in the new series, and I certainly felt the cast weren't given much in the script with which to work (especially a woefully underused Michael Fassbender), but it was still entertaining. The visual effects looked good, there was plenty of action, and I wasn't twiddling my thumbs, waiting for it to end. It's a shame they couldn't go out with more of a bang, but this was still a watchable film despite its flaws.

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