TL;DR – A visual spectacle with some fun moments but not much more
Rating: 4 out of 5.
The Mandalorian: The Heiress Review –
One of the bonuses of using a streaming service for your delivery platform is that you are not constrained to 1-hour time-slot (well 45min with ads) of broadcast TV. The Mandalorian has already used this to bump up the story and action in the first episode The Marshall. This week we get to see it reverse with a much shorter but more concise episode.
So to set the scene, in last week’s episode The Passenger things didn’t quite go to plan, and that is saying something, which led to the Razor Crest being a leaky sieve with nothing but the cockpit secure from the ravages of space. However, janky it may be, but at the start of this week’s episode we finally make it to Trask an ocean moon orbiting the gas giant Kol Iben. After some … interesting moments landing (that did give me some Firefly flashbacks) they arrive mostly in one piece hoping to find the Mandalorians left on the planet. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – This is an episode of getting all our ducks in a row, but a good version of that.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
The Boys: We Gotta Go Now Review –
In a world where superheroes have the power to do anything they want … what is to stop them from just doing it? This is the question that The Boys has been asking for a while, and this week we get to see that the answer to that is not a whole lot.
So to set the scene, in last week’s Nothing Like it in the World everyone’s world got turned on their heads. A-Train (Jessie T. Usher) got kicked out of the Seven, Homelander (Antony Starr) is continuing to lose his position on top, and Butcher (Karl Urban) lost everything because of his blind hatred of Supes. With everyone spiralling out of control, it is the perfect time for people like Stormfront (Aya Cash) to spill in and upset everything, which is precisely what happens. Now from here, we will be looking at the episode as a whole, so there will be some [SPOILERS] ahead.
TL;DR – When it gets to the emotional core of music Stuck has some real emotional weight, but it has issues getting between those moments.
Score – 2.5 out of 5 stars
Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene
There are many things that can make a bad day and I can tell you that being
stuck in a train carriage with a bunch of strangers for an indeterminate amount
of time would be very high on that list. With this in mind, I was captivated
with the idea of setting a musical in that setting and where you could go with
the pressures and opportunity of keeping everyone in that one space. What we
get in the final film is a story with two halves, however, unfortunately, they
don’t quite work together.
So to set the scene, it is a day in New York and disconnected strangers are
running around in their day trying to get from one place to another. You have
Lloyd (Giancarlo Esposito) a homeless gentleman who is getting ready for the
day in the actual train carriage. Alica (Arden Cho) a dancer trying to get home
and avoid her stalker Ramon (Omar Chaparro), Caleb (Gerard Canonico) who is
running between his many jobs, then Eve (Ashanti) and Sue (Amy Madigan) who are
just trying to get home on a difficult day. Fate is a precarious thing at
times, and this day as they board the train everything grinds to a halt as a
police incident closes the train lines trapping the train in-between stations,
and as the carriages are locked there is the realisation that they are trapped
and the only thing you can do is sing.
TL;DR – When it works it is some of the best TV on the planet at the moment, when it doesn’t well at least it is still well shot and acted.
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
With The Passenger (see review) coming to a close we have reached the end of Westworld’s Season Two. It was a season of competing timelines, the coming of a war, a mother searching for her child, and a lone warrior standing up when everyone needed him too. Today we are going to look at the highs and lows of Westworld’s sophomore season as we return to the holiday destination now turned into a massacre. So say goodbye The Maze and hello to The Door.
TL;DR – This first episode is like watching an oncoming storm approach. It is beautiful but also full of trepidation as it unleashes its torrent.
Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars
What is life? It is a question as old as time itself. Were we created? Did we evolve? A little of both? Well in this week’s episode we take a look at some of those questions when the created become the creators and the created fight back. While Journey into Night (see review) had to do a lot of setting up to get the season started again, Reunion doesn’t have that baggage and as such it barrels full steam ahead into the season.
Wow, just wow, for a long time Netflix has been moving into the movie distribution industry, but so far they really have not put out anything truly remarkable, focusing more on Adam Sandler type movies, when they actually get around to promoting them. So when some friends in the industry mentioned that Okja was the real thing, I was surprised, then I found out that it was made by Bong Joon-ho, whose Snowpiercer was a fascinating film, even if I did have a couple of issues with it. So I loaded up Netflix, put out my lunch, and wondered what we were going to see, and I can honestly say I was not prepared for the feels, in any way shape and form.
TL;DR – While not a flawless movie, it is beautifully crafted and a great follow-up to the Disney classic.
Score – 3.5 out of 5 stars
The Jungle Book continues Disney’s campaign to recreate its classic animated films in live action remakes or hybrid live action. So far we have had the quite bold Maleficent, the serviceable Cinderella, and now it is time to take on Rudyard Kipling’s masterpiece ‘The Jungle Book’. The choice to do The Jungle Book is an interesting one because it is not without its problems, the original cartoon while still a classic in every right, does have some very problematic depictions. As well as this, the author of the original work is Rudyard Kipling and whether Mr Kipling intended to or not his poem “The White Man’s Burden” became a literary justification for a new wave (or at least an intensification) of colonialism and imperialism throughout the world. So while none of this would have been problematic in the 1960s, it is today, and it is clear Disney or at least the director and writer had these issues on the radar when filming. So within this potentially problematic environment, it is really quite interesting to see Disney take quite a risk here, and it is a risk I do believe that has paid off for them.