Monday, February 16, 2015

Movie Review: How To Train Your Dragon 2

Hey guys!  I finally got to see HTTYD 2 last week (I got the Blu-Ray of both the HTTYD movies and a DVD copy of Beauty and the Beast for my birthday.  So excited!) But anyway, I'm probably one of the very last people to get a movie review up for this puppy, but hey. 

(Image from

I'm just going to go on ahead and post spoilers; the movie's been out on DVD since November-ish.  The storyline is superb; one  of the best sequels I've ever seen.  No plot holes, no sense of "they're just doing this for the money and didn't even think this through".  It gives a wonderful backstory and even explains Hic's scar!  The movie shows a wonderful message of how trust is everything, including the strong bond between a human and an animal.  There are plenty of foreshadowing events that you pick up on once you watch it a second time, and it's fascinating.  I love that Valka actually looks like Hiccup, because it was one loose end tied up nicely -- plus, Valka!  I also love how Hiccup and Astrid's relationship is evolving, but not too fast or too slow.  It's just a comfortable kind of friendship/girlfriend/boyfriend relationship and it's great. 

Holy crumbs, the animation.   I just sat and ooh-ed and awe-d at the TV for the majority of the film.  The graying hairs, the fur pieces, the dragons, how everyone is shown at the appropriate ages and they actually look like themselves...GAH.  Perfection. 

Soundtrack:  I'm a sucker for soundtracks like this.  Scottish/Celtic-type soundtracks like this will automatically get a 11/10 score from me, but this one was amazing.  Plus, the actual songs sung are great and actually feel great for the movie. 

Cast:  I was so excited to hear that the original cast was coming back.  One big mistake with movie companies is that when they reprise a role for a sequel or prequel, they can't/don't get the original cast back.  The fact that Jay, America, Gerard, etc. came back is amazing and I really hope they're still on for the third movie! 

Overall, I would give How to Train Your Dragon 2 a 10/10.  It was very well-thought-out and I hope the third one is as well-made as the first two were!  Have any of you seen HTTYD 2?  Plan to see it?? 

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Movie Review: Guardians of the Galaxy

Hey everyone!  I know, I'm dreadfully slow at getting this review up, but this is the review for Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy movie, plus the Blu-Ray extras. 
I'm not going to go into detail about it, just in case someone hasn't seen it yet - just covering the general summary. 

The Movie:
Guardians of the Galaxy is an intense movie with incredible graphics.  The CGI is strong in this one.  The movie is about Peter Quill's origins as Starlord, and how the Guardians of the Galaxy were formed.  Gamora, Groot, Rocket the Raccoon, and Drax the Destroyer are all in the movie as well.  Lee Pace as Ronan the Accuser (seeing Lee Pace go from the Elven Thranduil in The Hobbit movies to a blue-skinned terror known as Ronan the Accuser was..interesting!)  and a few others are the villains in this film. 

The movie follows the not-so-orthodox team as they assemble and go on a dangerous mission to keep the entire galaxy safe.  That's not the easiest task, obviously! 

The casting: 
Couldn't have been better.  Chris Pratt is Peter Quill.  Zoe Saldana plays an excellent Gamora.  Dave Bautista is perfect for Drax.  And Vin Diesel..."I am Groot". 

The CGI: The CGI in this movie is impeccable.  Most of this movie is probably CGI, with the exception of a few scenes.  I'd like to know how long it took them to make this movie!  Whew.  I thought the graphics might be a little crappy in the movie, seeing as there's just so much of it, but they pull it off incredibly well and make you feel as if you're right in these strange planets with everyone else! 

The Soundtrack: 

I....I'm hooked on a feelin'...that this soundtrack is as good as the rest of the Marvel movies.  Seriously, I give up even trying to rate the soundtracks for these Marvel movies because they're all so good!!!  While it might not be *as* good as Henry Jackman's for The Winter Soldier or Big Hero 6, it's still great!

The Content: Here's where we hit a little bump.  I was a little surprised with how inappropriate Marvel was with the dirty little jokes.  Therefore, if you have kids and don't want them exposed to dirty jokes, you may want to skip this movie, unfortunately.  That's really the only issue with the movie.  Between the dirty jokes and the extreme usage of a few specific expletives, it's a bit disappointing. 

I would give Guardians of the Galaxy a 9/10.  If it weren't for the content, I'd be giving it an 11 out of 10! 
I still recommend it, however! 

Have you seen Guardians of the Galaxy yet?  What did you think of it? 

Blu-Ray Special Features list
On the Blu-Ray disc of this movie, you get quite a few special features. This includes:
--Avengers: Age of Ultron exclusive look (!!!!!)
--Audio Commentary
--Deleted Scenes
--Making-Of Featurettes
--Gag Reel

All of these special features are really great - especially the Making-Of Featurettes, if you're into learning how they make the movie.  I recommend paying a few dollars extra to see these features if you can't find them online!