The Revenant: Alone in the Wild

Hello everyone! For this week’s”New Movie Show” we have Dicaprio’s latest attempt at an Oscar, The Revenant.

THE REVENANT

The_Revenant_2015_film_poster

DIRECTED BY: Alejandro G. Iñárritu

STARRING: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Domhnall Gleeson, Will Poulter

GENRE: Epic Adventure Western

YEAR: 2015

COUNTRY: United States

revenant-snow-xlargeIn 1823, a party of trappers under the command of Captain Andrew Henry hunt for pelts in the vast uncolonized wilderness of the Northern Plains in what was until 1821 part of Missouri Territory. When Arikara Native Americans launch a surprise attack on the party’s camp, many of the trappers are slaughtered and the survivors flee on a boat. At the recommendation of the party’s guide and most experienced hunter Hugh Glass, who has knowledge of the area and natives, they abandon the boat and begin the journey back to their outpost, Fort Kiowa, on foot. The decision bothers some, particularly John Fitzgerald, who is hostile towards Glass’s half-native son Hawk, as he was partially scalped by natives years earlier.

While scouting ahead alone, Glass is ambushed by a grizzly bear after disturbing her cubs. He manages to kill her, but is badly mauled; the party discover him close to death and carry him on a makeshift stretcher. Fitzgerald argues that Glass will not survive his injuries and that they should kill him to speed their journey. Unwilling to kill Glass, Henry offers payment to those who will stay behind with him instead. Fitzgerald, Hawk, and the young Jim Bridger volunteer. Henry makes Fitzgerald promise to stay with Glass until he dies and give him a proper burial.

the-revenant-fn01Alright Revenant, lets see why you are special. First off, the film is absolutely beautiful. The cinematographer inside me was so impressed with The Revenant that it peaked my interest in the subject once again. Despite what I heard, The Revenant also felt authentic, like DiCaprio was actually stranded and left for dead. Lastly, both the performances of Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hardy were on point and superb. It made me really believe that there is an existing rivalry between the two.  While the supporting cast didn’t impress me as much, they were able to hold their ground, just not that well.

I am sorry everyone…while I agree that Leonardo DiCaprio’s performance was Oscar worthy, it didn’t help the fact that The Revenant was just too boring. The Revenant was very slow and dragged on for the almost three hour run time. When I have to check my watch to see if the film is even close to being done, then you know that there is a problem.  Pure Oscar bait and it obviously served its purprose.

PROS:

  • Excellent cinematography.
  • Authentic feel.
  • Main cast performance.
  • Supporting cast performance.

CONS:

  • Boring.
  • Snail-like pacing.
  • Oscar bait.

SCORE: 7.0 / 10

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The Hateful Eight: A Bloody Stay at a Civil War B&B

Hello everybody! For this week’s “New Movie Show” we have the latest film from Quentin Tarentino, The Hateful Eight.

THE HATEFUL EIGHT

The_Hateful_Eight

DIRECTED BY: Quentin Tarentino

STARRING: Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Walton Goggins, Demián Bichir, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Bruce Dern

GENRE: Western, Mystery

YEAR: 2015

COUNTRY: United States 

hateful-eight-samuel-l-jackson_0Some time after the Civil War, a stagecoach hurtles through the wintry Wyoming landscape. Bounty hunter John Ruth and his fugitive captive Daisy Domergue race towards the town of Red Rock, where Ruth will bring Daisy to justice. Along the road, they encounter Major Marquis Warren (an infamous bounty hunter) and Chris Mannix (a man who claims to be Red Rock’s new sheriff). Lost in a blizzard, the bunch seeks refuge at Minnie’s Haberdashery. When they arrive they are greeted by unfamiliar faces: Bob, who claims to be taking care of the place while Minnie is gone; Oswaldo Mobray, the hangman of Red Rock; Joe Gage, a cow puncher; and confederate general Sanford Smithers. As the storm overtakes the mountainside, the eight travelers come to learn that they might not make it to Red Rock after all…

Alright Tarentino, let’s see what you have to offer this time around. I would like to applaud the entire cast (except for one individual) as they performed extravagantly and matched each other beat for beat. For a very character-driven film, I was worried that they wouldn’t bounce off each other as well as they did.  I don’t normally talk about the cinematography of a film over here on Media in Review, but Tarentino made that mountain look amazing and dangerous all at the same time. Beyond that, the dialogue is absolutely perfect. There is a reason Tarentino is known as the “King of Dialogue”. KurtRussellSamuelLJacksonHatefulEight

While the film does take place after the civil war, Tarentino overdoes it just a bit with the racial slurs. While this has become a Tarentino staple in his last few films, this time it actually made me uncomfortable watching it unlike in Django Unchained. Tarentino definitely got his point across about how much racism has changed since the civil war into the modern world. Also Channing Tatum, why were you in this film? You weren’t here very long and I am glad you were disposed of quickly.

PROS:

  • Main cast performance.
  • Supporting cast performance.
  • Cinematography.
  • Well-written dialogue.

CONS:

  • Uncomfortable racism.
  • Channing Tatum…

SCORE: 8.0 / 10

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Django Unchained: Slavery in the West

DJANGO UNCHAINED

Before I get to the review, please take the time to check out my other site The Electron Pub @ theelectronpub.wordpress.com. I’m working towards my bar tending license, so here is where I post reviews of drinks, recipes, and eventually some instructional videos.

TITLE: DJANGO UNCHAINED

DIRECTOR: Quentin Tarentino

YEAR: 2012

COUNTRY: United States

Oh, Django Unchained, how I wish that I did not wait so long to finally watch you. I had completely forgotten about Django Unchained upon its initial release, but on a random trip to Redbox I decided to pick it up. Already embarrassed to call myself a Tarentino fan since I had not seen the film, I pressed play and was intrigued by the start. I am so happy that I didn’t pass over the film completely.

Django Unchained follows the adventures of Dr. King Schultz, a dentist turned bounty hunter (Christoph Waltz) and Django, a freed slave (Jamie Foxx). They becoming bounty hunting partners and eventually team together to find Django’s wife Broomhilda (Kerry Washington). This leads them on some interesting adventures, clashing with slave owner Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his head of house slave Stephan (Samuel L Jackson).

I have to say, there are so many things right with this film that it is hard to just pick a few to talk about. I do have to point out that Django Unchained would not have been so successful if the characters weren’t so god damn awesome! Christoph Waltz and Jamie Foxx do amazing jobs at bringing the different cultures and mannerisms of their characters that they are just to damn entertaining the watch. The story of the film is absolutely riveting as well, I was so interested in the film that the almost three hours flew by. Another cool tidbit is that Django Unchained is actually a remake of the classic western film Django. The original star of Django (Franco Nero) makes a cameo in the film during one of the most memorable lines.

Foxx: “My name is Django.”

Nero: “How do you spell it?”

Foxx: “D_j_a_n_g_o. The D is silent.”

Nero: *chuckles* “I know.”

     Alright, now to get to the fun part of the review. The major issue I have with Django Unchained is that they use n****r and its variations a little to much.  If you don’t like the use of n****r and its other variations, then you might have a problem with this film.  I have a few friends that absolutely hate the word and are unable to watch Django Unchained because of it. It is very disappointing since the film is quite good. While I don’t have a problem with the word and I know it is supposed to add authenticity and make the characters feel “more real”, so in my opinion it contributed to the film largely. Let’s just say though, the word n****r and its variations are used about 110 times throughout the film.

Not to mention Leonardo DiCaprio’s racist skull speech.

PROS:

  • Hilarious relationship between characters.
  • Great dialogue.
  • Great combination of genres.
  • Leonardo DiCaprio at his finest.

CONS:

  • The use of the n-word may bother some viewers.
  • Why can’t minions or lesser villains shoot accurately?
  • Ridiculously violent, but what do your expect from Tarentino?
  • The film is quite lengthy.

SCORE: 9.5 / 10

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