NEW HAWKEYE POSTER AND TEASER!
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SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS SPOILER-FREE REVIEW!
I've watched Shang-Chi twice now, and all I have to say about this movie is supremely positive. I don't know how to start this review, because I just wanna scream and parade around with glee. Shang-Chi is a movie we should have had a long time ago in the MCU, but better late than never.
Shang-Chi is a martial arts bonanza from start to finish. The story jettisons in such a compelling direction, gripping you and embedding itself as a vital story worth watching. Simu Liu is guaranteed to be people's new favourite actor in the MCU with ease, but the supporting cast are equally fun and engaging - this is definitely a movie about a family though, not just one guy kicking butt to save the day.
Fight choreography in the MCU has always been something I greatly appreciate, but we've certainly been blessed with Shang-Chi, raising the bar for future installments. This film has some crazy elements we've never experienced, and just get crazier as it goes - paying homage to kung fu films of old, and Jackie Chan slapstick fights, but then also amplifies things with the Marvel stimulant. That being said, it feels like the least 'Marvely' movie for the majority (in the best way possible), but of course has bold implications for the future of the MCU.
I apologize that this review is an absolute shambles with next to no structure, but it's difficult to find words worthy of use. As I said at the start, the Chinese mythologies and unbridled martial arts are things I feel the MCU should have had a long time ago - it instantly feels like such a key/favourable direction for storytelling in this universe. Yes, I was expecting some amazing fight choreography/cinematography similar to Crouching Tiger, Hero, even the Matrix, but the film then takes things ten times further and embraces such unexpected (but extremely welcome) directions. You are not ready for this movie!
My final notes: Anyone unhappy with the rings being bracelets rather than their original comic book depiction, just know that these rings are so goddamn awesome, and the fight scenes they feature in are insanely inventive and creative. Other than Endgame, the final act of this movie is my favourite final act in any MCU movie (and I imagine the only reason Endgame wins for me is because of all the longterm development it's built upon). With this being the first actual Phase 4 movie, I can confidently say that Marvel still have a plethora of worthy stories to tell beyond the Infinity Saga. Shang-Chi has a grand future ahead of him.
What did you guys think? Let me know! (If you haven't seen it yet, please avoid the comment section).
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WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT MOVIE SPOILERS...
I made a post a couple weeks back regarding movie spoilers, and how they're bombarding social media to no end. I tried to remain relatively calm and collected, but I'm just fed up at this point.
Spider-Man No Way Home doesn't come out until mid-December, yet most of us more or less feel as though we know the full plot before we even got the trailer. Why is that? Oh yeah, because all we see when we go online are spoilers and leaks. A great deal will be fake, but there'll be some real ones among them - what angers me though is that they'll be shared no matter what.
The people sharing these leaks have absolutely no regard for anyone - their sole purpose at this point is to ensure they report on absolutely everything spoiler-related for the sake of views and likes. If these people are genuinely excited for the movie and personally don't mind spoilers, then fair enough, but don't upload/post shit on social media without any spoiler warnings - don't have your YouTube thumbnail a screenshot of an alleged leaked scene you selfish dumbass.
Because there's an absolute ocean of leaks for this movie now, you could argue that, "Well everyone knows *this* by now, so it's hardly a spoiler at this point". Ah yes, because prior carelessness occurred and 70% of people encountered initial spoilers, let's continue to report on them to ensure the remaining 30% have the movie spoilt for them too.
Honestly, when the trailer came out, I was like, "Yeah, looks good... shame I knew literally everything that was gonna happen". I can't imagine the amount of excitement I would've (should've) felt if I hadn't fell victim to other people's carelessness.
I'm not a psychologist, but surely people must get something out of spoiling movies for other people, like some sort of sociopathic feeling of euphoria whenever they show the world they're in possession of new information; information which normal human beings would acknowledge to be spoilers, capable of ruining people's experiences and anticipation.
I'm all for breakdowns and speculations, but when you introduce straight up spoilers as factual pieces of information, you're no longer in the realm of speculation - at that point you're just straight up spoiling a movie we won't be seeing for another 3 and a half months. Hell, if you really do need to post/upload spoilers to get those views, at least exert a morsel of effort to keep video titles cryptic and thumbnails free from stolen/illegal/fake footage. Stop waltzing around as though spoilers aren't sensitive pieces of information.
This current age of the internet and social media sucks so goddamn bad, because you are literally unable to enjoy anything anymore. You can thank a random YouTube channel for this particular rant today. I would have kept things vague, but I'm just sick of it now, so I'll go ahead and say that it was a channel called "Everything Always". I'm all for the breakdowns, reactions and reviews, but you obviously have no shame or consideration. I also notice that the channel's initials are the same as "Emergency Awesome", what a coincidence, that definitely wasn't intentional (not that I'm defending Emergency Awesome in any way since that dude has the most manic, clickbaity titles in existence). If you're concerned about spoilers as much as me and this channel appears on your Recommended page, I'd strongly suggest hiding them from appearing there again until they learn how to create content that's free from thumbnail/title spoilers.
Anyways, rant over. Thanks for reading. Thanks for being reckless with your growing platforms. Continue spoiling shit and learn nothing. No skin off your back since you'll be getting views and likes. Enjoy them, knowing that it's movie fans like me who'll suffer.
Feel free to read my original rant about movie spoilers below. If you're on the verge of posting a snarky comment, I'd advise reading the original rant in case I cover your inevitably impetuous response...
I wish Doctor Strange would erase my memory.
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If you haven't seen the teaser yet, check it out below!
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SPIDER-MAN NO WAY HOME TEASER!
I'm excited, but I'm just really disappointed that literally every aspect of this trailer was ruined via toys, other merchandise, and constant leaks/rumours. I would like to have experienced all of these jaw dropping reveals freshly, through this trailer, but sadly, the internet and it's grubby inhabitants just can't respect other people. If you personally find leaks and you don't mind, at least make the effort not to carelessly share them. It takes next to no common sense to do so.
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Screw "What If"
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ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY CHARACTER POSTERS!
If you haven't seen it yet, there's a new trailer too!
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ETERNALS POSTER AND NEW TRAILER!
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Plus: Exclusive Clip, "Scaffolding Escape!"
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New: SHANG-CHI CHARACTER POSTERS!
Plus a new character featurette...
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WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT MOVIE SPOILERS...
Don't worry, there's no spoilers in this post - just a rant about people's insatiable need to spoil things.
If you're reading this, it's probably because you're a fellow movie enthusiast. Entertainment by any means has the ability to bring people together. We can anticipate and experience things, then discuss and share said experiences. Sometimes we have to wait an agonizing amount of time - often seemingly forever... but when it finally arrives, we're happy we waited, and most often than not, it's usually worth waiting for too.
As a kid, spoilers were never really a risk I encountered, partly due to the internet being not as, let's just say, socially collosal and expansive as it is today. I was able to enjoy movies, games, TV shows and comics from start to finish and get surprised along the way. The duration between a piece of media being announced/confirmed, and the time it took for it to release and be ingested was never a spoiler minefield, partly because such a minefield didn't exist.
Flashforward to present day, and we all have the same social media apps installed. We use these apps to discover content and stay updated with friends and family, though for some reason, in the last few years, all I seem to encounter on a daily basis are just spoilers for things I care about. The argument could be made that the algorithms are attempting to tailor content to me for convenience. I'm not denying that this is a beneficial system in theory, but when I'm forced to see spoilers against my will purley due to it relating to something I'm interested in, it gets a little annoying.
Another argument could be made that I don't have to use these apps, which is certainly true, but I shouldn't have to deprive myself of near-infinite entertainment that I do care about, just because a portion of people/organisations make it their mission to recklessly splurge out exclusive content for the sake of views.
These spoilers range from rakishly explicit images, to implicit news headlines trying their hardest to be allusive, though fail to realise most people aren't stupid and will probably know what a cryptic headline is implying, without needing to read the actual article. I've seen screenshots from upcoming movies that I would've rather not seen, I've seen people posting pictures of merch and figurines for things before we've even seen a trailer. Yes, merch/toys aren't always accurate, but they still give you a good idea of what's in store.
I miss being able to just sit and wait for a trailer, enjoy the hell out of it, wait in anticipation for the movie to release, and then just be able to f**king enjoy it when it's out! Now, everyday just feels like I have to dodge spoilers no matter what I'm doing. If I get a whiff of a spoiler, I have to double down on my vigilance to ensure it remains unspoilt. I have to make sure that remains the case right up until release day, and then let out a sigh of relief when I finally rest my cheeks on the cinema seat. If you're excited about something, why the hell has it become an obstacle course to make sure that remains the case?
I understand that some people are okay with spoilers, and I understand that some outlets try to share spoilers with some sort of security attached, for people that don't want to inadvertently see things, which I definitely appreciate... but to some degree, you have to acknowledge that there is nothing stopping a fellow reader taking that spoilery information and passing it along without the same degree of care.
Posting spoilers is easy content. It comes with an element of exclusively that is bound to pull in a larger audience, but I dislike this severely. If you have encountered a spoiler deliberately or accidentally, it is your responsibility to make sure others aren't forced to learn about them. If everyone else around you is posting spoilers for views, don't worry, it doesn't suddenly make you uncool for not taking part. If anything, I find it admirable if you're making the conscious effort not to participate in sharing spoilers.
At the end of the day, seeing spoilers isn't life or death, and in the grand scheme of things, this issue seems petty, but when you're passionate about something, you want to be able to enjoy it properly. If you bought a new book, you'd be annoyed if the person next to you skips to the last page and bellows out the ending. If you're queuing up to watch the final of a football tournament, you'd be annoyed if a time traveller teleported in front of you and spoiled the outcome. The irony of these over the top examples is that we're actually encountering this for movies/shows, however they're in the form of mundane social media posts.
This issue is just getting worse by the day, and I imagine every new movie that's set to release will just breed more and more spoiler content. I think there needs to be greater consequences for the initial leakers, and more of a deterrent for the people/outlets that are itching to share them. I'm not a tech whiz of any kind, but why can't we have something similar to an AdBlocker which censors potential spoilers? Silly, I know - ideally though, it would be nice to not have to suggest desperate ideas to avoid things I don't want to see. These are first world problems for sure, and I'm not denying that in the slightest, but it still sucks. It shouldn't have to be like this. Why is there such a need to declare you know something before other people? I honestly don't remember the last piece of content I experienced that hadn't had an aspect of it spoilt. I watch the trailers, featurettes and interviews as it's the quantity the content makers want me to see prior to the movie. I look at the poster because they want me to visualise what's in store. It should stop there. This is what we should discuss, speculate on and get hyped about and nothing more.
What are everyone else's opinions?
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I think the poster is a bit dull. Come on, Marvel, be brave! Don't just have my man standing there - we've already seen that! Have him fists clenched in a flying kick stance or something!
What do you guys think?
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Sorcery is a slippery slope to madness!
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What did everyone think to the Loki finale?!
(Potential spoilers in the comments)
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WHAT IF...? POSTER AND TRAILER!
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SPOILER-FREE BLACK WIDOW REVIEW!
Well, it's been two years since I went to the cinema. Two years since I watched a new MCU film. I've been dying to see a movie - any movie, so in a sense, my expectations weren't crazily high. I was just happy to be home (my local cinema). And boy, it's good to be back!
Although we already know the fate of Black Widow, I feel this film was still a necessary installment, albeit sadly long overdue. Of course, it's better late than never, but I feel like this film would have benefitted from being released between Civil War and Infinity War. Easier said than done, I know - Marvel had a tight schedule and plenty of pre-Infinity War stories to tell. Thankfully, the movie steers clear of feeling redundant, as it serves as a fulfilling backstory for one of the MCU's oldest characters (having first debuted in Iron-Man 2), as well as potentially telling some exciting origins for others.
In terms of the story, it feels as espionage and James Bond as possible - in other words: Whatever elements Black Widow brings to the ensemble movies, it is cranked up to eleven and invites us into her exclusive realm and lifestyle. Is it one of the strongest stories we've had so far? I would put the movie around mid-tier when you compare it to the rest of the MCU. This isn't a bad thing in any way. To say there's so many installments now, it's a relief to know that new and exciting stories can continue to be told, without feeling like a carbon copy of one another. When I rank MCU movies, rest assured I deem them all above par in comparison to general cinematic releases, so it doesn't really matter where I rank them. This film more than anything provides an opportunity for us to peek behind the curtain, further to what was alluded to in those Age of Ultron visions. Having watched this, the next time you replay previous installments, you'll have a greater level of empathy and understanding for the character, which will in-turn enrich the part she plays, thus securing the MCU's "re-watchability".
We get some fun and exciting characters. Florence Pugh's character is a great addition to the universe, as well as David Harbour's. Everyone gives it their all and melds naturally into a pre-existing juggernaut with ease. Without spoiling, I hope to see the return of particular people in the future. This again is a testament to the movie - although we know Natasha's fate, we can still be excited for the future as a result of this movie. In terms of the movie's villain, I can't review Taskmaster efficiently without potentially spoiling anything, so all I'll say is this is Black Widow's story, and the people around her are stepping stones. The theme of family and closure outshine the traditional good vs evil theme, but everyone plays their part to get her to where she needs to be.
In conclusion, I can happily say it was still worth the wait. Do I feel like our extended anticipation might damage other people's expectations? Almost certainly. Now that things are seemingly reverting back to normal though, I'm keen to get this Marvel train back on track, and Black Widow was a valiant foot on the accelerator, to ready us for the MCU's exciting return to theaters. The acting and the action were on point. The family elements worked well. And most importantly, my Mum enjoyed it, so if she enjoyed it then it must be a good movie because her opinion is sacred.
Have you seen it yet? Let me know what you thought in the comments! (If you haven't watched it yet, please steer clear from the comments section!)
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It's been 2 years since I saw an MCU movie on the big screen. On Wednesday the 7th, I'll finally be watching Black Widow and posting my non-spoiler review soon after! I'm so excited!
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