Ironman 3– movie review

A movie franchise always has it's highs and lows, and each person will remember the best of a series of movies and regret watching the lows.

Robert Downing Jr IS the Ironman, and he has added the personal touch to the man in the metal suit, with his larger than life megalomaniac style, and it will be hard to think of another person who can play this superhero better.

Nevertheless, the high in the franchise, most will probably agree, is the first movie or the combination Avengers movie, helmed superbly by Josh Weldon.

The trouble with the third installment is perhaps the need to break out of the same mold with more of the over the top larger than life RDJ swagger, and new cool gadgets and the like.

So they bring in Shane Black, best known for his efforts in writing Lethal Weapon, and he tries to add a more human factor in, plus a bit of conspiracy into the show, and he throws in heavyweights like Ben Kingsley, expands Gwyneth Paltrow's role and adds another star who can act and fight in the form of Brit Stuart Pierce. Rebecca Hall (The Town) also plays her small but important role with much gravitas.

With two Oscar winners thrown in, Iron Man starts the movie fighting a seemingly invincible and terribly cruel villain in the form of Mandarin, but there is a twist and Iron Man runs around in this movie with rather larger proportion of his time without his super suit actually.
So does this new formula to rescue the franchise work? There is still good chemistry between Don Cheadle and RDJ, but when you add too many elements, characters and a rather unconvincing conspiracy, there seems to be too many things, and also too many iron suits running around.

Sure action aficionados will be pleased, with plenty of explosions at rather deafening volumes, but you find that even that lack the Michael Bay touch and it's too much too many in way too many scenes.
Nevertheless there were a few really funny moments and the chemistry RDJ had with the kid who helps him was sweet and hilarious. Ben Kingsley does a wonderful job in his role and for those who missed it, it seems Mandarin is a Liverpool fan! 
It's spectacular to watch in the cinemas, and probably will have kick ass surround effects on Blu Ray, but this outing is more for the hard core Iron Man fans and is unlikely to win new fans with this outing.

Not bad, but not great, and part of the reason may be Shane Black tries too hard to introduce a new facade, adding two Oscar Winners into a rather convoluted plot and dilute RDJ's larger than life style.

2.5/5, but probably it will be a great demo BR disc.

GI Joe Retaliation– movie review

GI Joe will sell a certain number of tickets regardless of it’s actual quality, since there are a considerable number of economically viable folks now in their 30s or 40s who remember the old cartoons and toys very fondly. The first remake about 3-4 years ago, didn’t do too badly either, and was a commercial if not a critical success.

The formula is simple, get some fine, handsome, fit young men, partner them with the latest weapons and gadgets, throw in some equally fine hot ladies with outrageous figures, and add plenty of explosions, and viola, you have a movie that even Michael Bay could endorse.

You will see some of the old main stars from the first movie back here, plus some new additions, and I have to say getting Bruce Willis in the picture and let him have some fine quips (“my cholesterol is a little high”) is a hoot.

There is little character development time, but who cares? This isn’t Oscar winning fair, and revels in the booms per minute, and kills per second count, plus some very solid sound engineering.

This is one show you should go to the cinema to view, it was a fabulous experience with plenty of chest thumping bass, and good surround action.

The plot is almost threadbare, with a Cobra operative replacing the US president, and he orders the elimination of the GI Joe outfit, and the remnant survivors seek revenge. No worries about your girlfriend asking too many questions, since there is really not much even for the most inquisitive gal to ponder on…

The release date on this movie was delayed so as to avoid confrontation with meatier fare last year like Spiderman, and you can understand why, with the lightweight plot and acting, but action aficionados will not be disappointed.

Some actors really just turn up for the paycheck and it shows, others put on a great show, and the Rock is one of them, and Bruce Willis does a nice turn with his limited screen time in this one. You won’t see another big match up between Ray Park (Snake Eyes) and Lee Hyun Byoung (Storm Shadow) but look for the improbably twist, which I reckon was demanded by Lee’s Korean and Asian fans…

Chick factor is actually rather low, but you do get some ladies who look great, fight well and get your testosterone levels up.

This will most likely make a good Blu Ray disc, unless the makers decimate the bass again like what they did with Avengers (bass cutoff all over in that Blu Ray).

Recommended for a watch / rental when the disc comes out, and for those who played with the toys, a keeper.

Domestic bliss - sweaters and arguments...

A couple lived for many years together... a long life, fulfilling and happy.
During this time, the wife kept a metal box which she told the husband never to open, and he dutifully obeyed. One day after almost sixty years of marriage, as the wife lay on her deathbed, she called the husband over, feeling it was time he knew what was in the box.

He brought it over and opened it for her. Inside the box, there was a couple of knitted sweaters, and a big wad of cash, worth almost $100 000.

The wife then explained, that before they were married, the grandmother of the wife had advised her, that whenever she felt angry with the husband, she should knit a sweater...

At this point, the husband smiled proudly and in his heart, he was glad that she was only angry with him only twice.

He nodded, told her he understood what the sweaters were about, and asked about the big pile of money...

She replied "oh, that the money I got from selling all the other sweaters.."

Married life isn't about no quarrels, but how we make it work and even if occasionally, life is as sour as lemonades, we just take the squeeze and make lemonades...

Make sweaters, not war.. keep warm, stay in love...


Not just another Sydney trip - food and more

So who has not been to Oz and in particular Sydney? Blue mountains? Harbor bridge? Koalas? I think most of us have seen them all .. How a...