Tag Archives: animated

Heavy Metal 1/5

Quite tiresome movie which I actually saw in the cinema the first time around, and kind of remembered fondly as a goofy cartoon with decent music, but this time around I found the terrible animation and mostly poor early 70s rock music just a grating experience. The only sections I liked were the story about the taxi driver, and the bomber crew/zombie story. The rest are just boring and embarrassing. It felt like pornography for 12 year olds.

It’s even parody proof, as it’s so ridiculous to start with.

5 Disney Movies 1995 to 1999 – 135

Tarzan

In this cast, Mark and Sam talk about assorted movies and the latest Godzilla trailer, and about 5 Disney movies:

  • Pocahontas
  • The Hunchback of Notre Dame
  • Hercules
  • Mulan
  • Tarzan

Aladdin 4.5/5

Aladdin

This is easily the second most funny Disney movie after The Emperor’s New Groove, but it does feel a little dated with some of Robin Williams topical references – I think everyone will recognise Jack Nicholson for years to come, but maybe not Rodney Dangerfield and Scorcese-esque De Niro – but the really good turns from the incidental comedy characters such as Iago, Abu and the carpet keep it cracking along at an excellent pace. There’s also some very creative ideas going on in the fast-paced sequences, such as the escape from the closing treasure-pit or the final fight.

Very enjoyable.

Beauty and the Beast 1991 4/5

Beauty and the Beast

First Watch!

This was a pretty terrific and absorbing Disney, with some great songs/animation combos, and a more resonant story than you often get with Disney.

One downside is it did keep making me think of the far-superior La Belle et La Bete (and giving me an urge to watch that again), which it shares many elements of, but Disney-fied, of course. That’s not a significant fault of this movie though, it does have enough charm of its own to stand up proud.

The Little Mermaid 3.5/5

The Little Mermaid

A decent Disney entry, with some pretty good songs, a memorable villainess, and some good comedy sequences. I laughed out loud in the bit where Sebastian is confronted with the horror that is the kitchen of a French chef.

However, not perfect. The whole ‘Ursula as the other woman’ plot was cursory and rushed, but I was kind of thankful it was. Any longer would have dragged the film down. 80 minutes is the right length for this sort of thing.

The Rescuers Down Under 3.5/5

The Rescuers Down Under

Rather charming Disney feature, unusually (at this time) a sequel. The animation seems to be a distinct step up from the late 60s/70s animation style (though many of the Disney’s from this period are classics, despite a basic animation style), and it’s a nice, light tail with a dark central character in the evil poacher, played nicely by George C. Scott.

I didn’t check this out, but the animation style, particularly of the poacher and his monitor lizard, seem very Don Bluth.

Lion King 4/5

Lion King

First watch!

Rather finely paced story, with simple but smooth and pleasing animation, fine comedy characters, and a story that stays simple and effective. They really cast fine vocal talents too.

I can see why this is considered a modern Disney masterpiece.

Treasure Planet 2.5/5

Treasure Planet

A middling Disney effort, with some effective, if maybe a little jarring, mixing of traditional animation and CGI. It’s too long (15 less would have been better), but the main characters are well developed and charming, there’s some fun stuff for smaller kids, and the character development and story development build nicely.

Definitely not top tier Disney, but solid middle tier.

Iron Man & Hulk: Heroes United 1/5

Iron Man and Huk Heroes United

This was rather poor, but I admit I was kind of excited to see a Hulk/Iron Man pairing, so perhaps my expectations were too high. To break it down
– Good: a few (a very few) of the shots and action sequences were quite good. I liked seeing the Hulk wearing a little Iron Man armour.
– Bad: Quite shallow, childish script that really made this not suitable entertainment for anyone over, say, 13, but at the same time it seemed a little strong and full on for younger kids. The CG mostly looked very poor.
– Odd: A section where the guys had to fight off monsters that seemed to have nothing whatever to do with the main story. Yeah, watching the duo fight a pack of wendigos was cool, but made no narrative sense at all.

Beowulf 2/5

Beowulf

This pitches up between real-life cinema and more cartoonish styles, and feels like the worse of both. The nearly-human animation feels unreal by its very nearly-ness, giving the whole thing of watching a cast acting through thick botox-poisoning. In contrast, the animation of Grendell seems oddly dated (it felt that way when it came out), and feels like a prototype cgi-rendering of the first version of Treebeard, or like someone asked the muppet guys to built a large model of a monster for stagework, and then someone converted that to CGI. It’s a very odd feeling. Another odd section is a sub-Austin Powers part where Beowulf fights naked, but his genitals are hidden by strategically placed items/people throughout several parts of a long scene.

It really doesn’t fly, except the final fight with the dragon. But at nearly two hours, this felt a long, unentertaining slog, only lightened by the obvious yarning of Beowulf, and the final fight with the dragon, which was quite enjoyable.

The Lego Movie 4/5

The Lego Movie

Very fun movie with one insanely catchy tune that will lodge in your head like a brainspider. It’s goofy and surreal, with plenty of jokes, some of which are at oldschool Lego expense, which is fine. Without spoiling however, I think this movie is not just working on a meta-level (big deal, a lot of kids movies do that, to keep the adults interested), but actually transcends this in the last act and becomes meta-meta-level (meta about meta-levelling).

Combine this is various butt-reference jokes, Batman, robo-pirate and similar, and you have something that the kids will enjoy, but so will the adults. In the screening I was in, you could hear the kids really laughing in places, but you could also hear the adults laughing just as hard in the same places.

Definitely recommended.

Star Wars: Clone Wars 4/5

Clone Wars

This is a review of both parts of the Star:Wars Clone Wars 2-D animated series.

This is fun, exciting and fresh, and the best Star Wars since the original trilogy.

Originally broadcast in 4 or 5 minute segments, this still works wonderfully as a single cut-together entity, almost entirely due to the canny filmmakers who wisely used cliffhanger devices between segments, thus providing the dramatic glue to allow the cut-together version to work well.

The animation is simple but very effective, the action is well choreographed and exciting (in Volume 1, there’s a battle between Mace Windu and, well, a droid army, that’s just fantastic), and it never flags. We get some important insight into Annakin’s journey, Yoda’s powers, and how General Grievous got where he got.

Thoroughly recommended, the crowning achievement to date of Star Wars, since Return of the Jedi.

Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs 4/5

Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs

Rather charming, clever and extremely inventive animated movie, that starts well and just gets better and better. I like some of the great ideas in here, like the clever girl having her own protective behaviours such as hiding her own smartness, and the fact some of the characters act against how they’d act if this movie traded in stereotypes.

One of the best animated movies I’ve seen for a while (for its inventiveness and weird moments, like people being chased by walking roast chickens). It plays to me like the weird lovechild of Tim Burton and David Lynch, sentenced to work at pixar together (maybe that’s a little strong).

Beautiful.

Episode 001 Tron – Legacy, Top 5 Memorable Movie Deaths

In this show, Mark and Sam review the movie Tron – Legacy, pick out their top 5 memorable movie deaths, and discuss such diverse entertainment as Star Trek and alternate universes, Nightmare Revisited (the soundtrack of The Nightmare Before Christmas redone by bands), and Battle Royale.