2018

The Predator (2018)

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From the outer reaches of space to the small-town streets of suburbia, the hunt comes home in Shane Black’s explosive reinvention of the Predator series. Now, the universe’s most lethal hunters are stronger, smarter and deadlier than ever before, having genetically upgraded themselves with DNA from other species. When a young boy accidentally triggers their return to Earth, only a ragtag crew of ex-soldiers and a disgruntled science teacher can prevent the end of the human race. This movie is directed by Shane Black under 20th Century Fox.

CAST: Boyd Holbrook, Trevante Rhodes, Jacob Tremblay, Keegan Michael Key, Olivia Munn, Sterling Brown, Alfie Allen, Thomas Jane, Augusto Aguilera, Jake Busey & Yvonne Strahovski.

GENRE: Science-Fiction, Action, Adventure

WHAT I LIKE?

The Predator offers a decent popcorn entertainment with a brand of violence you would expect from the Predator franchise. Overall, it is an enjoyable flick with good action sequences and decent amount of thrills. What I like about Predator is its comedic timing of some interesting characters in most scenes which actually worked in providing enough spice to the movie in general. Production-design and Musical Scoring is good. Visually, the gore and bloody scenes were executed well. For me, you may or may not watch The Predator in cinemas.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

The Predator Franchise is a bit exhausting already and it is just right to put into rest. The story is dragging so much unnecessary subplots and developments. It maybe a little enjoyable but the 2018 Predator movie lacks enough back story to please first-time viewers of the franchise. It is neither appealing nor engaging since it lacks enough action-packed Predator VS Man & Man VS Predator formula that could have been staged and executed in large amounts.

RATINGS:

6/10 Popcorn

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2018

Alpha (2018)

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While on his first hunt with his tribe’s most elite group, a young man is injured and must learn to survive alone in the wilderness. Reluctantly taming a lone wolf abandoned by its pack, the pair learn to rely on each other and become unlikely allies, enduring countless dangers and overwhelming odds in order to find their way home before winter arrives. This movie is directed by Albert Hughes under Sony Pictures.
Cast: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Johannes Haukur, Leonor Varela, Natassia Malthe, Priya Rajaratnam & Jens Hulten
Genre: Action, Adventure

WHAT I LIKE?

ALPHA is a riveting and breath-taking masterpiece sent in the Ancient times about a beautiful relationship between a canine and a human who were both caught with extreme weather conditions and challenging circumstances along their journey. What I like about ALPHA is its Visuals and Cinematography. It was truly a cinematic masterpiece of thrills and actions. The Production Design was impressive. The ICE AGE thing is pretty cool and well-executed. CGI effects of the canine is realistic and impressive too. Aside from an amazing execution, ALPHA is also acted with great actors. For me, ALPHA is a good flick but you may or may not watch it on theaters.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

In as much as I would like to love the movie’s impressive and top-notch Visuals and Cinematography but ALPHA is not as memorable as it should be. For me, it is forgettable and lacks enough charm and intensity for it to be remembered for sometime.

RATINGS:

7/10 Popcorn

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2018

The Nun (2018)

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When a young nun at a cloistered abbey in Romania takes her own life, a priest with a haunted past and a novitiate on the threshold of her final vows are sent by the Vatican to investigate. Together they uncover the order’s unholy secret. Risking not only their lives but their faith and their very souls, they confront a malevolent force in the form of the a demonic nun. The Nun is directed by Corin Hardy under Warner Bros. Pictures.

CAST: Taissa Farmiga, Demian Bichir, Bonnie Aarons, Charlotte Hope, Ingrid Bisu & Jonas Bloquet.

GENRE: Horror, Mystery

Here are the latest movie reviews in the CONJURING UNIVERSE:  Annabelle Creation| Conjuring 2

WHAT I LIKE?

The Nun is perhaps one of the most anticipated movies in the Conjuring Universe as it gave a chilling glimpse from Conjuring 2. What I like about The Nun is its dark and eerie atmosphere from beginning to end. The Nun picks up from a mysterious suicide that happened in an Abbey in Romania. The Vatican sent a Priest and a soon-to-be-Nun to investigate. What I like about the Nun is its cheap jump-out scares that is truly enjoyable for some screamfest fans out there. If you want to enjoy screaming with friends and strangers, watching The Nun should be on your list. Plot-wise, it is easy to follow with some interesting back story and history. If you are going to judge The Nun as a horror story, it got all the elements. The creepy and dark background was effective the whole time. The Nun and other ghost figures in the movie are truly horrifying. At some point, it is disturbing. Cinematography and Production design-wise, The Nun is okay. Acting-wise, The Nun offers a modest piece on the table. 

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

In as much as I want to glorify The Nun’s scary, spooky and creepy feels, the whole movie lacks in-depth plot presentation and execution from its narrative content. How I wish they could have given a deeper back story of The Nun and its dark past. Some scares were too predictable and overrated too. For me, I must give it to Conjuring 2 as the best movie in the Conjuring Universe. 

RATINGS:

7/10 Popcorn.

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2018

Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral

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Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral is a Filipino Historical film about Gregorio “Goyo” del Pilar, the youngest General during the Philippine-American War, who died in the Battle of Tirad Pass. It is written, directed, scored and edited by Jerrold Tarog under Artikulo Uno Productions, Globe Studios & TBA Productions.

CAST: Paulo Avelino, Mon Confiado, Arron Villaflor, Carlo Aquino, Gwen Zamora, Empress Schuck, RK Bagatsing, Leo Martinez, Benjamin Alves, Bret Jackson, Ethan Salvador, Jojit Lorenzo, Jeffrey Quizon, Ronnie Lazaro, Robert Sena & Matt Evans

GENRE: Historical Film, Action, Drama

Catch my latest reviews of Jerrold Tarog Films BLISS  |  Heneral Luna

WHAT I LIKE?

Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral is an epic Historical Filipino cinematic masterpiece that is truly worth the wait and the international recognition. I am truly proud of this film as it celebrates not only Philippine History but a breakthrough in Filipino film-making industry. Goyo picks up a part of our History books during the Filipino-American War in the 1890’s and the bloody battle of the epic “Tirad Pass” in Ilocos Sur Region. What makes this movie so special is its artistic approach in integrating major elements and historical facts while adding up some fictional aspects. There is a disclaimer on the first part of the movie so audience could expect some creative techniques along the way. The good thing, the historical and realistic story-telling was not ruined hence, it was emphasized more. The film is composed with engaging conversations and some pretty cool battle scenes. There was consistency from production design to choices of attires considering it is a period film. So far, this is the best Pinoy Period Film to date offering impressive set designs and props that truly shows the movie’s well-executed craftsmanship. I really loved everything about their setting. My most favorite scene in the movie is the Tirad Pass. The view is just breath-taking and hair-raising for me. Action scenes were done with precision and was not over done. Drone angles were utilized well also. Cinematography top-notch along with their Musical scoring. I can’t help but be proud of the overall Production of the movie. More than an impressive and jaw-dropping backdrop, Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral boast of talent actors in our generation. Paulo Avelino was fit for the role. He was charming and he was at his normal best. Mon Confiado delivers too as President Aguinaldo. Other able cast includes Carlo Aquino, Gwen Zamora, Ronni Lazaro & Empress Schuck. I am really impressed with the casting for Goyo. Jerrold Tarog gave a tremendous effort in becoming the Director, Writer, Editor & Musical Scorer of the whole film. Goyo deserves the blockbuster. Goyo deserves an international recognition. Go ahead and support Goyo: Ang Batang Heneral in Cinemas nationwide.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

I can’t unlove Paulo Avelino and the movie for sure.

RATINGS:

10/10 Popcorn

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2018

The Hows of Us

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A young couple dream of growing old together as they as they deal with the struggles of being in a long-term relationship. They must make decisions and take risks as they fight for their passion and for the love of their lives. This movie is directed by Cathy Garcia-Molina under Star Cinema.

CASTS: Kathryn Bernardo, Daniel Padilla, Jean Garcia, Susan Africa, Ria Atayde, Kit Thompson, Alwyn Uytingco & Juan Miguel Severo.

GENRE: Romantic, Drama

WHAT I LIKE?

For me, THE HOWS OF US is definitely the best KATHNIEL Movie so far. I have been a fan of all Kathniel movies and I am looking forward for their movie projects. The Hows of Us is by far their most promising movie offering  matured and quality performances from both Kathryn & Daniel. Plot-wise, it is very easy to digest. What make it stand out from all their other movies is that the film is raw, honest, genuine and very realistic. The movie is simply all about having a long-term relationship and just surviving it against all odds. What makes it special is the scenarios and decisions the characters have to be made. All of the scenes are truly relatable. With the conflict of Passion, Family & Stability, The Hows of Us has perfectly portrayed  the crossroads of emotions and decision-making. At some point, I am really affected by their decisions too. The movie is emotionally-compelling specially that the lines and conversations were brilliantly-crafted. I must commend the script writer for a job well done. Cinematography is also commendable especially the scenes shot in Amsterdam. Musical Scoring was good too. Acting-wise, Kathniel and Daniel delivered their best performance yet. Chemistry is given. But what sets their performances from all their previous movies is MATURITY. I see a more seasoned acting prowess from both of them. Kathryn slayed every scene. Daniel never failed to give justice to his role too. Overall, The Hows of Us will truly affect its viewers especially that it touches a lot of values and issues which are truly happening nowadays. What I like about the film is that it imparts a very valuable lesson about love and life. Moreover, it makes us realize the decisions we will be making that will truly define our future. Worth-watching all over again.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

How I wish AMSTERDAM was given a little more emphasis in terms of Production Design. Nevertheless, it still give me that invitation to go there very soon.

RATINGS:

10/10 Popcorn.

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2018

Crazy Rich Asians

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The movie follows a native New Yorker, Rachel, as she accompanies her longtime boyfriend, Nick Young, to his best friend’s wedding in Singapore. Rachel eventually found out that the guy he is dating belongs to one of the country’s wealthiest families and is a sought-after bachelor too. Being on Nick’s arms puts a target on Rachel’s back especially his own disapproving mother. This movie based on a New York best-seller from Kevin Kwan is directed by John Chu under Warner Bros. Pictures.

Cast: Constance Wu, Henry Golding, Michelle Yeoh, Gemma Chan, Harry Shum Jr., Awkwafina, Sonoya Mizuno, Lisa Lu, Ken Jeong, Jimmy Yang, Ronny Chieng, Nico Santos.

Genre: Romantic, Comedy, Drama

WHAT I LIKE?

Crazy Rich Asians is like an expensive gift wrapped with a very fabulous ribbon that is more than worth the price of your admission ticket. The movie is a glittering and golden masterpiece that is consistent from beginning to end. From a non-book review reference, I am very impressed if I based it on the movie alone. What I like about the movie is of course, it’s an all-Asian cast and crew which give it more of a connection for us Asians. More than just a native connection, the Crazy Rich Asians depicts very well various Asian culture and traditions without sacrificing the moral lessons it wanted to impart to its Global audience. After watching it, I must say the CRA appeals to all movies from all parts of the globe. The Crazy Rich Asians picks up from the relationship of Nick & Rachel going into a transition after Rachel finds out that Nick and his family is crazy rich. Crazy Rich Asians was shot beautifully especially showcasing Singapore and nearby islands. It lives up to its title since all the locations, fashion statements, food, activities and even to the tiniest details was covered with expensive glitters. Production design-wise, the movie exceeded my expectations. Singapore was the best choice of the movie’s setting. I loved how CRA utilized well the Marina Bay Sands and some of Singapore’s iconic tourist spots. Aside from an impressive production and cinematography, Crazy Rich Asian’s strength lies from its interesting, out-of-this-world, hilarious and very talented cast. I have never seen a film filled with so many amazing and impressive characters. Henry & Constance were both perfect for the role. Their chemistry is undeniably strong. I must commend Constance as Rachel on CRA since she nailed the role. Henry as Nick on the other hand was the dream Asian bachelor everyone dreams about. The comic support of Awkwafina is truly one of my favorite parts in the movie. She just brought so many things on the table. Michelle Yeoh was a perfect mother villain too. Crazy Rich Asians brings enough spectacle and emotional pinch especially when talking about fighting for your love against all odds. Also, it imparts valuable family lessons that is truly relatable despite the extravagant packaging of the film. In the end, CRA reconnected and was a success in delivering its message to us viewers. I am just so excited to see the sequel. Worth-watching and highly-recommended to everyone.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

In terms of the ROMCOMM Formula, the Crazy Rich Asians falls short but for me, it is totally forgivable.

RATINGS:

10/10 Popcorn.

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2018

The Meg

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A deep-sea submersible–part of an international undersea observation program–has been attacked by a massive creature and now lies disabled at the bottom of the deepest trench in the Pacific.With time running out, expert deep sea rescue diver Jonas Taylor is recruited by a visionary Chinese oceanographer, to save the crew from this unstoppable threat – a pre-historic 75-foot-long shark known as the Megalodon. This movie is directed by Jon Turteltaub under Warner Bros. Pictures.

Casts: Jason Statham, Bingbing Li, Winston Chao, Rainn Wilson, Ruby Rose, Page Kennedy, Jessica McNamee, Olafur Olaffson, Cliff Curtis & Masi Oka.

Genre: Action, Adventure, Thriller

WHAT I LIKE?

For a shark movie, The MEG succeeds in the basic of formula of thrills and story line. What I like about The Meg is the foundation of its plot about discovering a new place underneath the deepest part of the ocean where Megalodon lives. The whole undersea observation was pretty cool too. Acting-wise, Jason delivers a satisfying performance. There were a handful of edge-of-the-seats moments throughout the film.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

Overall, The MEG was a pretty disappointing movie compared to other previous Shark movies released in Hollywood. Visually-speaking, it is not as impressive and as scary as The Deep Blue Sea nor The Shallows. The shark seems to be a bit CGI-ish especially underwater. Some of the scenes were hilarious instead of scary to me. How I wish they invested on making the shark scarier and more realistic for me. Visual editing was pretty half-baked to say the least. Plot-wise, it was creative but it lacks shark terror attacks especially on humans. I expected a longer human interaction given the fact that the shark is heading to public beach. I expected that scene to be bloodier and gory but it was like a short-lived moment for me. I mean, they already tarnished the shark’s image, how I wish they made it more of a flesh-eating monster as visualized by the whole film itself. The MEG did’t reach my Top 5 Shark Movies to date.

RATINGS:

6/10 Popcorns

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